I Wish Upon A Star

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It seems to be almost a promise that if I write that things are looking up, of course my next post will be about how things didn’t look up. Though this could be a simple continuation of the last post and my worries about how the medication may not be working when I am on the job. Like I said, it seems to work whenever I am at home but when I am at work it is a different story. 

I reported for my shift this Friday ready and excited to get through the weekend especially since I had some new dresses for trying dim sum for the first time the next day. 

It was okay, at first as usual. I did my pacing thing in the back office waiting for my shift. Which no one even questions any more. They just accepted that I can’t sit still very well. However there was one manager that I have always some issues with did not like it, His solution was to have me start early. I didn’t know how to say “no” to that so I went ahead and clocked in interrupting my ritual I guess you could say. Within two hours I noticed that I wasn’t able to finish my sentences. I couldn’t catch my breath, the room was spinning and I was developing chest pain. A few more check ins were attempted as I figured it would go away as these symptoms usually do with my panic attacks. The strange thing was that there wasn’t any feelings of panic beyond why was I experiencing these symptoms and why weren’t they going away? Over an hour I struggled through and eventually had to tap a manager on the shoulder and let her know what was going on as bare bones as I could – especially since we were on stage at that time. 

I asked after a possibility of an early release quickly and moved on to attempt working with another guest, during which my symptoms began to escalate. After finishing with the guest I moved to the managers office where I found the manager I spoke with earlier and quickly just said that I have a panic attack disorder and believed I was experiencing a panic attack. I explained the symptoms and that I wasn’t positive I would be able to make it for another five hours to the end of my shift. 

My Klonopin was in my purse so I grabbed that and filled my cup with water to sit down in the proffered office to hopefully work through the attack and see if I can talk myself into finishing my shift. 

One of my compulsions is writing as many of you know and tends to calm me down so I began to write out my symptoms and thoughts. One set was the realization that it wasn’t a matter of being able to finish the shift it was a compulsive thought line of “I can’t. I can’t. I can’t.” I could but I can’t

I hadn’t told my manager about the chest pain until another manager came in that was already familiar with my situation and told her about the chest pain and the pain that was psychosomatic-ly moving along my left arm centering at my elbow.

Which prompted questions if I would like paramedics and that I would need someone to pick me up as I would not be able to drive home.

Of course I turned down the offer for the alpha (paramedics). What if this was once again all in my head? Paramedics show up and my blood pressure is normal all that stuff. Plus paramedics, just for a panic attack? It just seemed silly.

And once again, of course came along the questions if this role was right for me. Should I transfer. (Get out of their hair).

“I’m doing better. Really. I don’t know why this is happening. I feel confident in my job. I was fine during the morning shifts. Which you would think would be the opposite for the lack of sleep I was experiencing due to the shift change. There is no reason to be feeling like this. No reason.

Eventually I called my mom and told her what was going on so I can make an appointment with my psychiatrist to look at my meds and get him to write a note for what was going on. And as usual for me the moment I got on the phone I started to blubber. Following that call, I called my friend Linda that I was going to be staying with that night anyways to see if she would come and pick me up.

So we left my car there, picked up some food on the way to her place and I hopped into the tub for a bath when we got back. And just sat in the water for maybe two hours, refilling the tub when the water became cold.

My coworker has become a close friend and has taken to calling me almost every day whenever he is bored and tends to have freaky timing. The moment I got of the tub and plugged in my phone expecting to not get a phone call, **ring ring**.

I told him about what happened and how I was feeling and he already started making plans on how to cheer me up. We were already meeting up for dim sum the next morning but since I wasn’t going to be able to work he was working with more time.

We ended up going to the M&M super store at the Florida Mall because “I need chocolate. Stressed backwards is desserts.”

Which took me a long time to figure out. For someone with dyslexia, that was pretty sad.

It had begun to rain a little bit but the beauty of Florida is that it never lasts long usually. We went to Gatorland. I had never been before. Bad Floridian, I know. But the number of gators they had astounded me!

So many gators!

So many gators!

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This poor guy was missing a foot.

This poor guy was missing a foot.

Gatorland also had birds. Lots and lots of birds. 

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Small birds.

Small birds.

Slightly bigger birds.

Slightly bigger birds.

Frou frou birds.

Frou frou birds.

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Native Florida birds.

Native Florida birds.

Then the creepy bird.

Then the creepy bird.

They sold little bags of hot dogs you could use to feed the gators and of course the birds were interested as well. I mean, who wouldn’t be? Free food! Except there are some birds that are determined to get your hot dogs. That is when the stalking began. This creepy freaking bird started to literally stalk us. 

Stalker.

Stalker.

And because my friend was the one holding the treats… he seemed to get the brunt of it.

Even with the emus

Even with the emus

IMG_2871His new found loves made for great photo opportunities however. 

I found out the weird vulture stork looking thing was actually called a Woodland Stork and they are the most aggressive of the varieties that were found at Gatorland.

Aggressive? These birds? No. They just want a hug. From a hot dog…

We ended the day with dinner at The Wave found at Disney’s Contemporary Resort. I of course have never eaten there before same with many of the restaurants my friend takes me to. He has taken me to the Sci-fi diner, dim sum, City Walk and T-Rex at Downtown Disney. 

The forty five minutes waiting for a table was spent talking about DAAR and my relationships with my coworkers, how I started at Art and should I stay. If I shouldn’t stay, where should I go?

I apparently had a bad start. Immediately singled out by (his words) jealous people that got the ball rolling for how people would interact with me the rest of my DAAR career. Just like Speedway it seems. 

While we were sitting down, an adorable little girl was playing “capture the daddy with a big squirt gun” and it was very cute. She would come into the area we were sitting in and chase after him. Eventually the father surrendered and corralled her off saying “They are trying to have romantic time. Let’s leave them alone.” 

Immediately. 

“Uhh.”

Me: Not exactly but sure let’s go with that!

We tend to get that reaction a lot and it doesn’t even phase me anymore. 

Soon after our little buzzer thing went off and we found our table. 

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Wonderful fluffy multi-grain bread served with soft butter and salt.

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He ordered the lamb with a substitution of Jade Rice and Caramelized Mushrooms.

He ordered the lamb with a substitution of Jade Rice and Caramelized Mushrooms.

I ordered the Flat Iron Steak with fingerling potatoes and a substitution of onion mashed potatoes.

I ordered the Flat Iron Steak with fingerling potatoes and a substitution of onion mashed potatoes.

As always I let him order my drink since he is the expert and has yet to lead me to a bad drink. I learned I prefer Mojitos made with Sprite as opposed to just soda water. But look at this garnish!

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And here is the dress I wore.

And here is the dress I wore.

By the end of the night, I was feeling a bit better. Still stressed. Worried. But definitely feeling better. 

Photography Practice

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I was finally able to borrow a friend’s laptop and transfer photos from my camera to my phone and share some with you, today.

*NOTE* These photos are unedited beyond sizing.

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Posted from WordPress for Android. As much as I try to proof read, typos and grammatical errors will more than likely occur and I hope you can graciously forgive them and me.

EPCOT Flower and Garden Festival 2014

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I had a little bit of free time yesterday since my appointment with my psychologist wasn’t until three in the afternoon and I took the opportunity to head to EPCOT and get some photos of all the gorgeous topiary displays around the park. And I may have gone selfie-happy.

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This upcoming Sunday I will be joining up with a friend and will be hitting the Magic Kingdom and I take loads of pictures then, too. If you have any comments (*cough cough* compliments) about my mad skilled photography please say something!

Am I the only one who feels like they are at the optometrist when editing photos? 1… or 2…? 1… or 2…? 

Pesky Purple Dress

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So.

This thing has been a nightmare.

It started off well enough. I was excited for the challenge. I am quite the amateur when it comes to sewing so this pattern provided many news challenges and wonders for me to embark upon. Lining, pockets, and damned princess seams. Using silk brocade that has been sitting in my hope chest of sorts for nearly twelve years. I have more where that came from, I was a bit obsessed in middle school. You can see it in the background of the bodice lining photo.

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I used Simplicity 1687 with bodice view A from their Runway line. Many great possibilities were seen for this pattern but after actually pulling up a garment, there definite fitting issues I need to address. It almost fits true straight off without altering it except of course as with all my dresses the top of the side seams need pinching, the waist a bit but most importantly – the upper bodice. The neckline gapes in the most unseemly way and the shoulder seams want to slide down and off my shoulders entirely to fix the problem.

Normally I would just pinch and dart my way out of these problems but the fact the upper bodice is lined makes it too bulky and it just looks unattractive.

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Raw edges. I know.

There is pleating on every section of the skirt and it actually looks really nice. There were only four panels unlike the six I am generally used to.

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The pockets aren’t inseam using a yoke or the side seam. Actually the pockets are slowly pieced together as you make the lower bodice and pleat the front skirt panels. I quite liked the process. I do plan to add small hidden hooks and eyes as I believe the weight of the fabric is too much and the bands gape.

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I still much much prefer hand picking my zippers. I happened upon the perfect color match amongst my mothers thread supply. You can’t even see the color difference.

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I know I will come to love this dress and any variation there after as soon as I address and fix these fit issues. Of course I would greatly accept any advice that can be given. 🙂

I will post photos wearing the actual dress as soon as I get outside and can wrangle someone to be my photographer.

It Has Been A Stretch or Two.

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It’s definitely been quite a while since our last adventure. I should probably apologize for that. But I simply didn’t… feel like it.
Anyways for the majority of October and November I was on a little ‘stay-cation’. Sassy had come to Disney for three weeks and it was probably the best time of the last few years!
I had forgotten what it was like to be in the presence of a real friend.
Normally even sharing seen entire house with just a couple of people I will go crazy after a few days and last a week at most. But three weeks were nothing and I wish everyday that she didn’t have to leave.  I have my fingers crossed that she gets the lottery for her green card this’d time. I will find some other way to get her here!
It took her a week to get over her jet lag, and the second week was mostly spent with me starting to get sick. And rage quitting UNO. I still say it was more than luck. 😛
But the last week was filled with endless photos. We did Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, and it was the best night. We sat our butts on the second floor of the Main Street Train Station for over an hour and a half waiting for the fireworks and Christmas parade!
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And I whooped her on Buzz Lightyear Space Ranger Spin!
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This ‘snow’ was very pretty but oh Lord, did it stink!
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We would spend a bit of time almost every day going for walks around Pop Century and Art of Animation. I also took a lot of walks around by myself as well. Time to myself where I could listen to music and just walk. I never do well just sitting down for too long.
And with that last night at Hollywood Studios for the Osbourne Lights, her great visit came to an end and it was time for me to take her back to the airport. We stalled as much as we could. I even parked and checked into her flight with her. We walked around looking at the different shops till we could stall no more and I had to leave her to go through the security check.
I’ve been worried about her since she left.
I know how I have been going crazy myself going back to this house and way of living. 
I took my sewing machine back and made a craft room.  My mom had it set up to the side of the living room and there was no way I could work there. I’ve never worked well in open areas.
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Simplicity 1687 is my latest project. After wearing the Dragon Dress when meeting my boyfriend’s parents (that’s… a story for another post, okay?), and receiving so many comments – I decided to get back on the horse.

I chosen to use a purple silk brocade for this particular design. I’ve never worked with silk before or installed a lining. So…. it is definitely taking some time.
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But I’m getting there! It will just take some time. Wish me luck guys.
And let’s hope my 22nd year goes better than my 21st.

Powering Through Dyslexia

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I took up sewing entirely based on the fact there was no money for clothes. So when I finally get the call back to work and that mean five days (at the least) of professional attire and all the clothes I had were either left over from high school (2010) or from garage sales. I didn’t ask to go shopping so I could have nice clothes to properly present myself to my new leaders and coworkers. Instead I went through piles of fabric that date from the seventies and on to attempt several levels of difficulty higher than what I have attempted thus far. It is so frustrating whenever I attempt to ask for help and my dyslexia is turning everything backwards and the reaction I recieve is contempt and discriminatory.

As many of you know, I suffer from severe dyslexia and it has been one of the reasons for my bullying ever since I was a small child. To be raked over the coals like that by someone who recognized my dyslexia for what it was as a toddler, and never even tried to get me help for this – hurts.

Anyways. I’m trying to use mostly dress patterns since I honestly don’t have any blouses. The problem now present however is most of the fabric I have found in the house is two yards or less. Mostly scrap fabric bits that have been essentially hoarded in piles since the seventies.

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Please, do ignore the Chinese take away.  Haha.

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I really love the design of this pattern but it requires over 3 yards of fabric not including the lining! Yowza!

Recently, I decided this next pattern would be choice even though it required princess seams (which is a skill I apparently suck at. But I will get better with practice!) and on its way to three yards of fabric. At 2 5/8 yards, those 3/8 of a yard really count when you are trying to squeeze a pattern onto the panels.

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I did acquire these really pretty and flowy “silky prints” from Jo Anns during their firefly sale but only two yards of each excusing the butterfly which I was able to get a 3/4 remnant.

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I’m just going to have to keep trying and sew into the night. As long as mom has her tv on it shouldn’t wake her up. I would be more worried about waking up my dad in the adjacent room.

Do you have any tips for working through sewing or life in general with dyslexia?

P.S. Please excuse any typos, I’m back to posting from my phone!

Hand Picking

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Hello there!

So, if any of y’all follow me on Twitter you may have heard about a little incident that may have caused some frustration this past Saturday night. I thankfully was able to save it for the most part, but I will be having to reinforce most of the seams and maybe add an extra length of fabric along the inside of the zipper bed so I can redo the stitching on the Hummingbird Dress.

Anywho, this prompted me to kick into gear and bang out another dress out of some red tag fabric I had picked up from Jo Anns a while back! This pretty neat print with some lotus blossoms and the like.

Koto Grid

     As this was an on-the-fly-I-can’t-even-find-the-pattern-instructions-anymore dress, I decided the say screw it and wing quite a bit of it. This presented itself mostly in way of inserting the zipper.

Now, I have a supreme and utter crippling fear of inserting zippers. I’m as jumpy as a grasshopper in May. Stories of needles breaking, needles breaking people, and bobbin cases cracking have all played a part. So when I came upon Tasia’s tutorial on how to Hand-pick a zipper into a dress a few weeks ago, I thought this was the perfect opportunity.

It is actually very simple as long as you know how to perform a back stitch! I also learned this technique from my favorite Designer and DIY…er from YouTube, SecretLifeOfABionerd thanks to her many sewing tutorials.

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     All it took for me to figure it out was to think as I naturally do, which is backwards. I am constantly translating things to being read or perceived in the manner they should rather than backwards or jumbled. To complete a back stitch just take your (hand sewing) needle and bring through from the underside of the fabric about a 1/4″ from where you actually would normally start. Then, take your needle and make a stitch back at the point where you would normally start your sewing. Thus a backwards stitch. Supposedly this is a much more sturdy stitch and if you were hand sewing a garment from start to finish, this is the stitch you should use.

And a prick stitch is just a back stitch that is teensy weensy on the actual back stitch part.

…. By no means is this a tutorial! I would be much more clear minded and provided pictures of the process.

So, please forgive my rambling and crappy explanations. 😀

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        There was so much more control and ease in inserting this zipper that I actually found it quite calming and relaxing. I am looking forward to the next zipper I have to install! It was very easy for me to adjust the tape really just take my time with it. When I am using a machine, I am so terrified I just want it done with! So, I zip whoop pun! through it and I am not too happy with the results.

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     As you can see there is quite a bit of tangled thread, uneven application and the top of the tape was not done is such good taste. I found even using the universal invisible zipper foot I found, it just wasn’t easy! It may have also been because of my feed dogs. They started to actually feed the fabric… sideways. I kid you not. Kinda like testing the alignment of your car.

     “Look, Ma! No hands!” And if you your car is like any of the ones I have had in my possession, they will almost always slide to the right or left. Beauty of living down country dirt roads. Lotsa, lotsa sugar sand.

     And that is exactly what my machine did. I always thought perhaps it was just the table I was using since it is slightly wobbly and unstable. I would always have to have a firm hand and feel like I was feeding a line through a reel.

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     Even down towards the end here you can see that it was indeed rough. But with the hand-picked zipper, this prick stitch is barely visible and still adds this cute little dotted detail. …I also have a weird eye for things.

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     I don’t know exactly how I am going to fix this raveling issue for the poor Hummingbird Dress, but hopefully I will. Cause I love this dress. Lots. We have this special bond, ya know?

     How would you guys fix something like this? Have you ever tried a prick stitch or hand-picked zipper?

     ….I really shouldn’t be asking this for my own sake but I want to know! Do you have any zipper horror stories?

          Til next time!