Edward says “Hello” from his Hammock

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My Sewing Machine – A Tad Under the Weather


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My poor sewing machine’s gizzards are all strewn apart.  This Singer 66 is my first vintage sewing machine, and she is my wonderful workhorse.  As I’ve learned how to refurbish sewing machines (I’m still a rank beginner), I’ve figured out that this machine was only partially refurbished, and that’s why her parts have been brought out from under her skirts to see the light of day.

Anyways, her main electrical wires had been replaced, but she still has some original wiring.  This mess is the interim step to replace the wiring, as well as replace a small bit of the motor controller that had snapped after decades of use.  For months, my machine has been limping along with a vital part of the motor controller snapped in two and just crammed back together with only friction keeping the machine sewing.

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I love vintage things like the nameplate for the controller.  I might have to shine that piece up.

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Here’s a closer-up of the actual motor controller (the white thing).  And, the wee black thing (not the big black thing) at the bottom of the white thing is snapped in two.


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I had to include this photo.  It’s just wrong to have a sewing machine motor’s just lying there.  Just wrong.

It looks like my Featherweight might get a work-out today.

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Happy Thanksgiving – Keep it Simple

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That’s my pot of cranberry sauce to be.

I grew up with canned cranberry sauce, and it seems so simple.  Buy the can.  Use can opener.  And, dump the can-shaped cranberry jelly into a dish and serve.  And, I loved it.

Then, ….  Last year, I found out how much I’d been deceived.  Making cranberry sauce from scratch is simple.

Buy bag of fresh cranberries.  Dump cranberries into sauce pan (high sides are good).  Add a cup of water.  Add a cup of sugar.  Boil, and then reduce heat and cook for 10 minutes.  Cool and enjoy.

See… The instructions take up the same amount of space, and here’s the added value.  It tastes better.  The cranberries do all of the work.  They mush themselves, and they gel themselves.  And, they pop like popcorn for added enjoyment.

I loved cranberry sauce before.  I love it more now.

And, … everyone will think you spent hours struggling to make cranberry sauce, unless they’re in the know…

Anyways, Happy Thanksgiving and Keep it Simple.

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(My cranberry sauce just a gelling.)

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The Rat World is Mourning the Passing of its Rat Ambassador


Photo from Martin “Marty” Mouse Facebook Fanpage

Yesterday, Martin Mouse, “Marty” crossed the Rainbow Bridge after a short battle against heart failure.

Marty was well-known for several of his adventures including his space trips and his international businesses.

And, he was even known outside the rat world.  For instance, he has frequently been found on Buzzfeed.

According to his owner, one of Marty’s subsidiary businesses, Pillows and Calendars, are still taking orders.  A reindeer and an angel pillow will soon be available for purchase.  Although now, the angel pillow is a bit poignant.

Marty, all of us are missing you.

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Hero Rat Theme Song

Today, APOPO linked their theme song on their Facebook page.  And, I just had to share.

APOPO is an NGO that trains African Giant Pouched Rats to detect mines and Tuberculosis.  They are a Belgian organization, but they are based out of Tanzania where their training programs are located.  They started removing mines from Mozambique, but with their successes, they have expanded to other countries around the world that suffer from mine fields where people are trying to live.  Check out their impressive mine detection work here.

And, as if that’s not amazing enough, APOPO has rats that detect Tuberculosis and save even more lives.

Also, I’ve heard that APOPO is researching other projects such as having rats help with disaster recovery by training rats to maneuver around a disaster area with a camera attached to the rat.  This last area fascinates me greatly, and I hope that APOPO has great success with this area of research.

Last thing, I wanted to mention was that a great Christmas/holiday gift could be a HeroRat adoption.

Here’s a video about Hero Rat adoption.

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Happy Halloween – Pumpkin Fiesta 2014 – Update 6

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We decided to  go ahead and put the pumpkin out on our front stoop with a lit candle to illuminate their carving efforts.

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Pumpkin Carving Video … starring Doctor – Pumpkin Fiesta 2014 – Update 5


The video quality isn’t the best.  I will have to try again with my better camera.  But, here’s an action shot of Doctor carving the pumpkin.

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