Thursday, December 30, 2010

Trying the Domestic Thing

I've never been any sort of domestic goddess. I like cooking, but it's been a long process of "becoming." The first meal I ever made for my husband tasted, as he so kindly put it, like Lysol smells. I liked it, but chicken deep fried in lemon pepper batter with lemon rice on the side obviously wasn't his thing. I never made it again. My landlady at the time did her best to teach me to cook "real" dishes. She was Italian, and for three and a half years I was her pet project . . . and a disappointment.

Something clicked between then and now, and most meals I make are edible at the very least and often pretty darn good. Just don't ask me to make beef of any sort because I get lost in that section of the meat department. I really don't know one cut from another and I get frustrated and end up serving beans to my family that night instead.

For 17 years of marriage, however, I have never really tried the sewing side of domesticity. The idea of making curtains and duvet covers and pillowcases and clothing of any sort? I just can't take myself there because I have flashbacks to my childhood and the polyester t-shirts I wore--the same pattern in varying material (but always polyester)--for several of my formative years. "Traumatized" would be a strong word. "Shell-shocked" would not.


This Christmas, however, I took the leap. Ron asked what I wanted, and I confidently said, "A sewing machine." The excitement in his voice was sweet . . . a certain air of innocence there, like a child who can't believe his good luck at getting the toy he always wanted but never hoped for out of fear of being disappointed.

Here's the one I picked out. (I needed a beginner's, and even this one is a little advanced for me. See that knob on the right? I've spent two days trying to figure it out.)

And here, apparently, is what I'm supposed to be wearing while I sew. And another reason the idea of sewing has always frightened me a little. Am I required to wear slippers? Obviously not. But after a few months at my little machine, will I resort to slippers and a housecoat as my go-to outfit? I've decided I have to have faith in the friends I have who sew and get dressed every day.

Also to ward off the slippers and housecoat, I've decided to not make a single curtain, duvet cover, pillowcase, or article of clothing until I have mastered these:

Okay, so that was my first. His name is "Thump-er" and he's a love bird. Those are wings (misshapen, yes, but perfectly functional in his world) and eyes wide with love.

I started this today and don't know yet where I'm going with it.

Finally, to keep myself entertained while making monsters, I watch monsters. That's "Angel" in case you can't tell--as in David Boreanz, as in Joss Whedon--because nothing makes a home a home like a few vampires and demon hunters.

I sense Ron's childlike enthusiasm fading quickly.

Good thing I made beans for dinner.


AngryBaker said...

I'm jealous of your fancy machine. Mine only has 4 stitch options and I kind of hate that. Ron needs to get you some sewing slippers now - totally necessary.

Happy sewing!

Bobbie said...

So far I've only used one stitch option: straight. Well it's straight when I remember to put the foot pedal thingee down. Simon had to point that issue out to me. I think I might have to actually take a sewing class.

Erin Stocks said...

I love, love, love this post. Well done, you!

Val said...

Those slippers are hilarious! And your creatures are fantastic! Keep it up! (Am I overdoing it with the exclamation points?)

Bobbie said...

Val, I wear my Ugg slippers instead. Or my new red boots. :-)And I'm glad you like my monster/creature/thingees. I'm sure I could learn a thing or two from Zoe though.

And thanks, Erin. This (my blog) has been the extent of my writing for a few months. I needed to take an emotional kind of break . . . or a break from my emotions. The up and down of it all was getting the best of me. I'll creep my way back in slowly.