08 July 2017

Sweatshirt Alterations {aka It's 100 degrees outside!}

Clothes have always fit me really weirdly. I have a long, thick torso, so things are either the right length but too baggy, or the right fit but too short. So much fun. So I've been looking up ways to tailor and adjust my clothes to fit me better. I'm not going to lie, I'm not the best with a sewing machine, but I do try to learn and not swear at it as much as others I know. (You know who you are!)

When I last worked at Trefoil Ranch, we ordered staff sweatshirts. I was super excited about mine! I got a white one so I could tie dye it. (Because everyone needs a tie dye sweatshirt in their life!) Sweatshirts are tricky. If they are unisex or ladies cut, it changes my sizing dramatically. I've had sweatshirts in the past that I ordered my size, but they were a ladies cut and it didn't fit. :(

This one I ordered a size larger just in case it was a ladies cut (because we didn't know when we ordered them). Well, it was (and still is!) way too big. Really comfy and warm, but too big. So I don't wear it!

As I have been learning and searching, I found ways to alter t-shirts. I figured if you could alter a t-shirt to fit you better, you could alter a sweatshirt. I thought about just taking in the sides, but realized I didn't like the way the shoulders fit.

I turned the sweatshirt inside out, and started to pin together trouble areas. I found as I took the shoulders and sleeves in, it made the rest of the sweatshirt fit so much better. I ended up taking 1" out of the shoulders the tops of the sleeves.

As I tried it on, the chest and sleeves were still weird and baggy (which made me nervous...I can't do much more than straight lines!). I experimented and figured out if I took the armholes in a little bit, it shaped it up a lot nicer. I ended up taking in a 1/2" on the sleeves.

Where the sleeves and shoulder alterations met were tricky, but I ended up hand stitching those corners so there wasn't a divot there.

I'm super excited! It fits much better, and I know I'll actually wear it. (And be more confident and not a floppy frump.) It's still not perfect, and I'll continue to make adjustments and learn, but I'm so excited it worked!

My next project:

A Wonder Woman cape and tiara! :) Wish me luck! 

05 July 2017

Rockets' Red Glare {aka Happy Birthday America!}

As I watched fireworks tonight, I got a little bit teary eyed.

I went up above Salt Lake City and found a grassy knoll to watch fireworks. It was AMAZING. You were able to see fireworks across the entire valley all at once. It was quite the sight, and I'm glad that I went.

As I sat and watched, I thought a lot about the colonists around the time of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. I can only imagine the mixed emotions people would have had as they became aware of the colonies' independence. Would they have celebrated as we celebrated tonight?

I thought about the men who penned and signed the Declaration. Their bravery to commit treason because they knew what they needed to do is astounding. I can only imagine the feelings of pride, terror, resolve, bravery, and courage these men felt. (And their families!) 

I also thought of Francis Scott Key as he wrote about his experience at Fort McHenry during the War of 1812. The British had laid a 3 day siege against the fort, and early in the morning, Key saw the flag flying over the fort, showing they had not been defeated. The words he penned in "Defense of Fort M'Henry" later became "The Star Spangled Banner," our national anthem. 

And the rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there
O, say, does that star spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free, and the home of the brave?

I thought of the Battle of Gettysburg, the bloodiest 3 days in Civil War. It ended yesterday 154 years ago. Gettysburg was probably the most memorable part of our spring break trip for me. When we were there, I felt I was on hallowed ground. The hot, sticky Pennsylvania air in the summer, brothers fighting brothers, and the stench of sacrifice lingering in the air. Would they have celebrated Independence Day that year?

The third day of battle, which culminated with Pickett's Charge, proved disastrous for the Confederacy. After an insane barrage of Rebel cannon fire to soften the strongly fortified Union positions, Robert E. Lee sent three divisions, about 13,000 men, across a mile-long open field between the Cemetery and Seminary ridges.

I thought about President Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. When he was invited to speak at the cemetary dedication he wasn't even the main speaker. However, President Lincoln's 249 word speech became one of the most famous speeches in our history.

"Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate—we can not consecrate—we can not hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract...."

This part hit home today:

"The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

I thought about other wars our country has been engaged in, all in the name of freedom. My grandfather served in World War II.  Countless friends have served in Korea, Vietnam, and the Middle East.


I thought about some of the freedoms and privileges I enjoy because I live in this country. I can travel without restriction, I can speak my mind, I can stand up for what I believe in to be right, and I can worship God freely. 

I'm so grateful to live in this blessed country at this time. The beauty of this land and the blessings that come from living here are amazing. I'm grateful I was able to celebrate independence today. :) 

 Happy Birthday, America!

02 July 2017

Happiness Equals

...Sunday drives in a canyon

...the wind in the aspens, the laughter of a trickling stream

...an investment in a jar of Nutella

...sweet pepper poppers

...new red heart shaped sunglasses

...sitting next to a running creek and dipping your toes in

...the smell of the mountains

...geeking out with someone you just met

...making plans to see old friends

...rewatching a favorite show and remembering why you loved it in the first place

...getting all the boxes unpacked

...FaceTiming family

...compliments from perfect gentleman strangers

...yummy food and good company after a great day at church

...getting your prayers answered in multiple ways

...laundry fresh out of the dryer

...roommates that make you laugh and not take yourself so seriously

...going to the park on Friday night to watch a free movie...just because

...a feeling I'm SO grateful for...

...knowing that I am loved, I am worth it, I matter to lots of someones, and I'm where I'm supposed to be. :)

30 June 2017

Adventures on the East Side (or Random Driving Thoughts)

I've missed Goodwill. Our Goodwill in Kingman was sketchy so the only thing I bought there were bowling balls. The Goodwill down the street from me is AWESOME, and I'm excited to venture there more. Also, Deseret Industries is awesome. (I love thrift shops!)

I've met more people from different countries in the last week than I did in Arizona and Las Vegas. I'm excited!

IKEA IS MINDBLOWING. I went there to check out dresser options and got lost. WOW! I'm not going to lie, I think it's pretty cool. I loved the self-sufficiency of it all, and that there weren't a ton of salespeople. People usually go to stores knowing what they want or need, and it was refreshing to just wander. I will be visiting again. :) (I'm also excited for my crepe pans!)

I went to Sugarhouse yesterday...I felt transported into another world. Holy cow! (Good other world, but another world.) I'm excited to explore the area with new friends.

When going to restaurants, I usually don't give them my first name. (I'm a little protective.) I usually give them Dixon. Yesterday I gave the girl my first name, and she didn't really believe me:
... Long awkward pause..."Cyri?"...."Like the...?"...{insert me nodding my head as in "why would I make this up?"}..."I'm sorry."...  Yep, that's why, people. I should just make names up all the time!

There are a lot of Greek restaurants here. (Including the Mad Greek! Shout out to Baker, CA!) There are just a lot of restaurants here period. :)

My little succulents are finally in their new home! Hooray! Word to the wise...don't put them next to a window you want to open...you'll inevitably knock them off at 1 am and have potting soil everywhere. {Just saying.}

I'm grateful that Utah is on a grid system, but it makes it difficult to get lost. I navigate really well with cardinal directions, but I feel like I'm losing a sense of newness and adventure because I can easily navigate. (I know that doesn't make sense, but it pops into my brain a lot.) Also the valley has a ton of highways/freeways that aren't on the grid system (all of them go in circles!). I get lost on those all the time.

I went social dancing this week! It was awesome! My roommate is on the committee for it, and she invited me to go. There were almost equal guys and gals, and everyone there wanted to dance. It was fun. I met new people, got to dance a lot, and twirled a lot in my skirt. :)

Our ward went to the Payson temple last night...it is gorgeous! I'm so glad that I went. The peace there was palpable (I could breathe!), and I was able to get to know more people in my ward. We stopped for Taco Bell afterward... "Temples and Tacos" will be a thing. :)

Utah is growing on me...slowly, but surely. :)