Waltzing Through The Waves (Part 2)

Interlude:

I was 15 when my mother died.  She passed away two months before her 47th birthday.

I remember it clearly.  I went home at lunchtime to pick papayas from our side yard because we needed some for our Home Economics class in the afternoon.  Next thing I knew, my cousin Narlyn was screaming my name saying my mom collapsed while she was having lunch with my dad at school where she taught.  They  brought her at my auntie’s house a few meters from ours.  Our auntie had a jeepney that would take mom to the nearest hospital which was two towns away.  An ambulance was nonexistent in our little part of the world back then.

I ran as fast as I can.  The small crowd that gathered around her at Mama Noring’s house parted as people let me through.  She was barely conscious but she opened her eyes when she heard me calling her name. She tried to talk  but couldn’t.  Her eyes welled up with tears as she looked at me.

That was the last time I saw her alive.  She had a stroke.  Years later I realized that with fast medical assistance she would have made it.

I think of her often especially now that Adi is sick.  The circumstances of living in a sleepy town of a developing country didn’t give her a second chance to live and love.  With Adi, medical science is here at our disposal.  He will make it.  I will do everything in my power for him to make it.

CHAPTER FOUR:  Dr. Chovanec and the Angel in Disguise

On his second check up, Adi was told to go for a CT scan.  The hospital gave him the date– May 4th.  It was almost a month from his initial check up which was on April 10th.  It was like an eternity of waiting.

And it was an eternity of waiting for the biopsy result, an eternity of trying to pull ourselves together, of learning to waltz through the daily grind despite our inner turmoils.  We coped by talking, by assuring each other we’ll make it through whatever it will be.  We took strength from each other.  I took extra strength in the only way I knew how — I prayed.

May 4th came, his CT scan happened.  The next day the hospital called to say they had the results of both biopsy and CT scan and to please come next week to see Dr. Chovanec, the head of the ENT department.  For the hospital to schedule Adi with the head of the department gave us a sense of foreboding.

So now we’ve come full circle to May 12th, when it was confirmed Adi had chondrosarcoma in his nasal cavities.  The ultimate question then was, what now?

My husband, in his understandably dazed state, only remembered few things the doctor told him.  He said he was told he needed surgery, stat, to remove the tumor and then later he would have to go through proton beam therapy to make sure the cancer cells are eliminated.

Every surgery comes with risks but this one comes with bigger ones like blindness, infection, bleeding — the list is awfully long.  The procedure is called craniofacial resection.  The name alone sounded ominous to me.  It’s a major surgery that’s done by incisions through the skull and on the face to gain access to the tumor.  He will also have a long incision in his right leg where the surgeons will get fats or tissues to “cushion” his brain.  Dr. Chovanec told him straight, without mincing words, that he might die during the procedure, but he might also live to tell his tale.

If you were Adi, what would you decide to do?  Get the surgery with the risks it entails, or choose to live the remaining days, months, a few years of your life to the fullest before succumbing to cancer?

If you were me, what would you do?

We spent that weekend in denial and in fear.  One of my greatest fears, him leaving first, seemed to be happening before my eyes.

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Seasons of love. Top: Autumn 2014, Loket Castle, Czech Republic. Bottom: Winter 2016, Prague, CZ.

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Four days later, we found ourselves in Dr. Chovanec’s office.  Adi was still undecided about having the surgery so I tagged along to meet his doctor and would be surgeon. I also wanted to feel if I could entrust my husband to him in case he’d opt for the surgery.

Lucky for us, Dr. Martin Chovanec was the perfect balance of straightforward and sympathetic.  He was also very patient answering our questions, especially mine since I was mostly the one asking.  We felt his sincerity to help which, unfortunately, is lacking in many doctors these days.  Other doctors treat you like you’re just one of the statistics, just another one of the many that they see everyday.  They seem to forget that to them you may be just one of the ants, but for other ants  you are one of their own.  You are special, you are loved.

Adi already felt comfortable with him from the very beginning.  In tough situations, I listen mostly to my instinct. My instinct told me here is someone who doesn’t bullshit us, who sticks to the facts and is committed to saving lives.  Surgeon, checked.

Still we wanted to weigh down our choices.  “How much time does my husband have without surgery?,” I asked.  Dr. Chovanec answered:

Two, four months.  Maybe two years.  But he will be in extreme pain and his character will change.  He’ll be irritable, depressed.  There might also be a change in appearance, like his eyes would literally bug out because of the tumor pushing them.”

I looked at my husband and my bestfriend.  Eleven and a half years of happy married life flashed before me in a quick montage.  I cannot see him hurt.  I cannot see him in so much pain. But I’m afraid for him to also take the risk of having his skull be opened.  He might die on the operating table.  Worst, he might come out alive from the surgery with major impairments or disabilities.  Ultimately, I knew it’s going to be his decision and not mine.

Dr. Chovanec saw we were struggling with our choices. He scheduled Adi for an MRI on May 19th and told us to meet him again on the 24th for our decision.  He then asked us to follow him to meet a patient he operated on five days ago.  This patient had more or less the same radical surgery that Adi would get.

And there she was, sitting in her hospital bed, browsing her phone.  Her head was partly shaven where the long stitches were.  Imagine yourself wearing a headband, that’s how the incision ran — from ear to ear.  Her left eye was bruised and swollen but if you’d cover her head, she could pass as someone who just had a bad fall.

She stood up to meet us, shook Adi’s hand and mine.  Adi asked a few questions not wanting to tire her.  She answered and assured us it will be okay.  I was in tears through it all.  Here is the living proof that there is hope for Adi.  If this lady made it, Adi would also make it.  Thank you, God, for showing us it’s possible.

A week later Adi confirmed to get the surgery.  Dr. Chovanec scheduled it on June 7, 2016.

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Seasons of love.  Top:  Adi and his parents, Spring 2015, Konopiště, Czech Republic.  Bottom:  Summer 2015, Bavaria, Germany.

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CHAPTER 5:  Before  The Day

By now you’re probably wondering how much is the cost of the surgery.  Better yet, how much is the expected cost for all the hospital visits and treatments?  My answer is I don’t know. Not yet, anyway. I’m thankful to the Czech healthcare system for eliminating the financial problem in the equation.  Except for some medicines, our insurance is covering most of Adi’s medical expenses.  I don’t know what would be left of us if we still had to worry about the financial side of this story.

It’s June 6th now, one day before the day.  Adi is admitted at the hospital early in the morning. There’s nothing for me to do except try to do the mundane at work and get a hold of my nerves as much as  I can.

His parents, who live two hours away by car, offer to keep me company at home especially for tonight.  I know they are beyond worried  as I am and I don’t want to add anything to that by being needy so we agree for them to come after the surgery to see him. For now  we all deal with our fears in our own separate ways.

At 5pm Adi sends me a  message that he’s just hanging around the hospital with nothing to do.  I take the subway straight from work to visit him.  It’s a sunny spring afternoon, so opposite of how I’m feeling inside.  I feel numb and disembodied but also hopeful.  Hours of praying have given me hope.

We talk by the hospital entrance.  Adi reminds me what to do if the smoke detector at the apartment goes off in false alarm again.  He asks if I always carry my pepper spray and tells me to always have my phone in hand in case I need to call someone for help. While he’s going through his list of reminders for my safety, Dr. Chovanec passes us by on his way home. He wishes us good luck for tomorrow and tells me he’ll call me right after the surgery.

At home at around 9pm, I get a call from Adi.  He says that a nurse already shaved his head.  He is about to shave his chest and right leg.  They also gave him a pill to help him sleep. He’s thinking of taking it in an hour or two.

In the complete silence of our apartment I think of how we’ve both come at this moment together, of how this could be our last.  I feel no bitterness nor anger.  We love and we are loved.  In essence, Adi and I have everything that sums up living.

— To be continued.—-

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Waltzing Through the Waves (Part 1)

Disclaimer:  This is no fiction but our own (mine and my husband’s ) real story, written from my point of view.  I’m posting it without any intention of harming or maligning anyone mentioned here especially the ones in the medical field.  I simply want to tell our story, the things we went through and the ones we are still going through, to remind ourselves that there’s nothing we can’t endure with faith and love.

 

PROLOGUE

I seriously don’t know where to begin.

Maybe I’ll start with this memory  I have of about five months ago.  My husband and I were sitting in a hospital outpatient room waiting for his doctor to see him.  With us in the room was this family; mom, dad and a teenaged daughter. They didn’t talk much but worry was written on the parents’ face, their fear palpable in their silence.  After a while the daughter’s name was called in.  The mom went with her but the dad went outside to wait where he was visible through the open door, pacing back and forth in the relentless late July sun.  An hour later, Mom and daughter finally emerged out of the doctor’s office.  The mom’s tear-streaked face said it all:  the doctor told them a bad, very bad news.

I  felt a squeeze in my heart and said a little prayer for this family. I know that look.  That’s how I looked when my worst nightmare had been confirmed.

 

CHAPTER ONE:  My Worst Nightmare Has A Name

We go back in the afternoon of May 12, 2016.  It’s a beautiful spring day but all that beauty is lost on me.  Except for my husband Adi and my sister Michelle, no one knows I have been wrapped up in anxiety for almost a month now.  I have been oblivious to all things bright and beautiful around me.

I take the bus from school, impatient to get home  at the same time dreading to open the apartment door. This morning Adi went to see his doctor. I know the news will either be good or bad and nothing in between.

He meets me at the door.  I ask, ” So what did the doctor say?”  He replies, ” Let’s sit down first.”

We sit in his study, then he tells me the words that will haunt me for the rest of my life:

Adi:  “My doctor said it’s cancer and it’s called Chondrosarcoma.  The good news is, this type of cancer has a high prognosis.  The bad news is the position and the size of the tumor.  It’s in my sinus cavity.  It’s already big, sweetie, it’s pushing my brain.”

The moment he says these words my face mirrors that of the girl’s mom’s.  No one but the two of us can hear our hearts breaking in a million pieces.

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Back when he was healthy. Top: Angkor Wat, Cambodia 2014. Bottom: Siena, Italy 2012.

 

CHAPTER TWO:  When It All Officially Began

If you think this type of  cancer would come in a blaze of symptoms, you’re wrong.  At least not in Adi’s case. It came slowly, almost stealthily, that when we finally caught on, the tumor had already grown and his sense of smell was almost gone.

His doctors don’t know when it all started.  I have a suspicion it all began when he started to snore about two years ago.  It wasn’t loud snoring, not the kind that would wake up the dead and slap you quiet if they could, so we just dismissed it as another extra baggage you carry when you’re forty.

Then there was the week-long headache in the early autumn of last year.  He went to see his GP, who sent him for an X-ray of his sinuses.  The result came back negative (which to this date still baffles me).

Since the summer of last year till his diagnosis this spring, he had a toothache that came and went as it pleased.  Same tooth, same level of pain.  His dentist drilled and filled but after a month or two  it would be painful again.  On his last dental visit, my husband was told he had an inflammation in that tooth.  His dentist drilled a deeper hole, filled it some more and sent him home with a copy of his dental x-ray.  Easy peasy lemon squeezy.

There were still other symptoms that only made sense after April 10th of this year.  For us, this is the official date of when it all began.  This is when his entire jaw hurt like hell that we finally realized this is not your ordinary toothache.

 

CHAPTER THREE:  A Nosebleed May Not Be Funny After All

April 10, 2016

Adi is back from playing tennis with our friend Karel.  It’s lunchtime on a rainy and cold Sunday.

He’s sitting quietly on the couch with a faraway look on his face.  I put lunch on the table and ask him what’s wrong.  He says it’s his tooth again.  He also feels he’s coming down with a cold again. His left nostril is still  blocked from the last cold he caught few weeks ago.

We eat in silence, each adrift in our own thoughts.  When lunch is over, I start preparing him my concoction against annoying colds; chamomille tea, lemon and honey.  He drinks a few sips and right away starts grunting in pain.  He covers his jaw with both hands, trying desperately not to scream.

You have to understand that my husband has a huge tolerance for pain and is hardly dramatic about it, unlike me.  To see him in this condition makes me grab my phone to call for an ambulance.

Adi:  No, don’t call.  I’ll take a pill and maybe the pain will go away.

Me:  No, this doesn’t look good.  We have to go to a hospital.

He takes a pain reliever and paces back and forth, back and forth, until the pain slowly starts to dissipate. He says it’s getting a bit better, that the pain is now concentrated more on the darn tooth again.

Less than an hour later, we head to the nearest hospital in Vinohrady.  In no time he is called in.  I’m not really worried.  There’s no reason to be worried.  It’s just a toothache, an inflammed one like his dentist said.  It will be okay.  He will be okay.  He is okay.

After about 20 minutes, he’s out of the doctor’s office.  “So, what did the doctor say?,” I ask.  He doesn’t answer right away and motions for me to follow him out of the clinic.  We’re out in the damp, cold hospital grounds before he tells me what he has been told:

” The doctor said I have something in my nose.  She’s not sure what it is, maybe a polyp or something. She took a biopsy. We’ll know the results in ten or so days.  She wants me to use a nasal spray meanwhile and to come back on Wednesday for a check up.”

I say ok, you’ll be fine, making a mental note to google what’s a polyp once we get home.  Little do I know that Adi at this point already knows he is not fine.

But me, I am oblivious to his inner troubles.  Ignorance is indeed bliss because I am just so ignorant about diseases in general.  For me, what could go wrong with a toothache or a nostril blockage and whatnot? It’s far from your intestines, as my grandma used to say, so everything should be okay, right?

Turns out I’m dead wrong.

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Back when he was healthy. Top to bottom: Cantilan, Philippines 2013 and 10th wedding anniversary in Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic 2014.

The reality that Adi may be seriously sick only starts kicking me in the gut when five days later he tells me he had a terrible nightmare the night before.  I ask him what was it about.  I can sense that he’s hesitating to tell me, carefully weighing the words he’s going to say.

He says he’s worried something is really wrong with him.  More than that, he’s worried about me, what will happen to me if something will happen to him.  Who will take care of me, who will help me navigate through all the Czech systems especially now that we just bought another apartment.  How will I cope with everything on my own? His barrage of worries continues on.  I frame his face with my hands, his image is blurred with my flowing tears.

Me:  “Don’t worry, Adi, you’ll be fine.  Even if you’re really sick, which I think you’re not, we’ll fight together.  I think you’re just stressed with everything, with the buying of the apartment and this.  You should see your friend Lukáš today.  Maybe you need a breather. Don’t worry about anything.  Don’t worry about me.  I’m fine.  I’ll be fine. Let’s wait for the biopsy results, also for the CT scan result which they told you on Wednesday to do in a few weeks.  Then we’ll go from there, ok?”

He nods, a tiny bit appeased with my monologue.  In the evening I’m able to convince him to go for a drink with his friend.  When he leaves, I immediately start googling for polyp symptoms, nasal problems, perennial toothaches, etc.  I type his symptoms and nasal polyp pops up.  This is good, I tell myself.  A small surgery can remove it.  The only thing is that alongside nasal polyps, paranasal sinus cancer also keeps popping up.  These two diseases almost have the same symptoms except two:  night sweats and nosebleeds.  Adi had about three nosebleeds the past few months.

His symptoms, scattered in the course of about nine months, are:

  • headache
  • toothache
  • clogged left nostril
  • cold that lasted over two weeks
  • decreased sense of smell
  • mild to moderate night sweats
  • nosebleed in the left nostril
  • snoring

I start shaking as fear takes over me.  This is bad.  I dismissed the night sweats as a bad company tagging along with his bad cold and we thought the nosebleeds  were just because the air was dry in the old apartment.  Teachers and kids at school often have them especially in winter so no big deal.

Back home in the Philippines we make fun of nosebleed as a figurative way of saying things are too much for you to take in or to understand. Then we laugh at the joke.  Except that I’m not laughing now.  I’m scared.

 

—-  to be continued —-

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Kokořín Castle

After five months of ignoring my blog, here I am again.  I thought of writing a long post about why I was MIA  (again) but that would require a lot of words, maybe a series of posts, and I’m just not in the mood for that.  So for now, before my favorite season ends, this one will do.

This summer’s been one for the books, the kind that brought me to the low of lows while sometimes giving me glimpses of the high highs in life.  Despite everything, I still consider it as one of the best summers ever.  It  brought me to places I’ve never been before such as making me realize how strong I actually am.  Literally, it brought me to Kokořín Castle.

Kokořín Castle is in the middle of a natural reserve and is only about half an hour drive from Prague.  My husband and I chose to visit this castle a few weekends ago because of its proximity to Prague and because of the rock formations near it.  Like most castles, it’s quite a steep climb on foot from the parking area so it’s good to wear your most comfortable shoes when visiting.

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The entrance to the castle grounds is free.  A guided tour costs 80kč (about €3) per adult. Students and children pay less.  We aren’t into guided tours so we opted to climb the tower for 30 kč each.  Up here you can marvel at the view of the courtyard and at the 360 degree view of green surroundings to your heart’s content.

It’s great that though we visited in the height of touristy season, there were only few people around.  It helps that the Czech Republic has looooots of castles around.  It’s no surprise to sometimes find yourself alone in a castle tower.  You can imagine your own fairytale without someone bursting your bubble or you busting someone’s rib for a perfect bird eye’s view.

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Around three kilometers away from the castle are rock formations  shaped by centuries called “Pokličky.” Pokličky means lids in English because that’s how the top stone slabs look like.  You can either drive from the castle parking to here or hike through a trail in the woods. For us, it’s no fun to drive when you can hike so hike it was.  But it wasn’t fun when I started limping from the blisters caused by my shoes.  Wrong choice of shoes for the occasion again.  I never learn.

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We  got back to the parking lot from Pokličky just around 7:30 in the evening.  My blisters were getting unbearable but the hike was worth it.  The trail weaves through ponds, streams, cottages and meadows — things that you won’t get to admire much when you’re only passing by in a car.  It’s interesting how it felt like time moved so slow here when it’s so close to the country’s bustling capital city.  So close yet a world apart.

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The sun was setting when we drove back to Prague.  Sunsets always get me — another day, another destiny/ destination over.  Only the experience, and the lessons such as choosing the right footwear, remain.

xoxo

 

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Saiph Tunic

I’m back!

If I were in a romantic relationship with my blog,  I would have been dumped long ago  due to my MIA tendencies. Its reason for dumping me would be that I didn’t find it interesting enough that’s why I neglected it for months.  I, as the obvious culprit, would try to go my way around without admitting anything and would have said something lame like “ It’s not you, honey bun.  It’s me.”

Well, yeah , it’s me. The last couple of months were a rollercoaster ride of stressful events. I just couldn’t bring myself to sit down and write.  If I remember correctly, the process of buying an apartment in Prague wasn’t so stressful nine years ago.  For no reason other than the universe conspiring to teach us a still unknown lesson, buying apartment number two is such a major headache.  The headache is dulling now, thank goodness, but the thought of moving and the process it entails makes my head throb all over again.

I’m not here to rant though.  I’m resurrected from months of  online semi demise to rave about this tunic I’ve recently finished sewing.   It’s comfortable, feminine, and with just the right amount of frills – totally my style.

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This babe is from Papercut Patterns. I consider it as my birthday present because I found its existence on my birthday last December after months of scouring the net high and low for a pattern like this. Weird how I didn’t see it before since I’m not new to Papercut Patterns’ designs.  Maybe it’s just a classic case of finding things the moment you’re not looking for them.

Just like my ever favorite Flutter tunic, this pattern is easy to follow.  I read many stories about how the hem frill is quite short so I added 5 cm to it.  I also added 6 cm to the bodice but it turned out unnecessary.  In the end I had to chuck out 10 cm off the bodice for me not to look like I just borrowed someone’s sleepwear.  Next time though, I think I’ll follow the measurements.  Longer bodice and shorter hem frill might also work just fine for me.

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My only minor complaint about this pattern is it’s quite loose on the bodice.  The shoulders and sleeves fit perfectly but I feel like another person will fit in the waist. It can actually look unflattering in some angles like I was four months preggers or just gobbled the entire dinner table. I don’t know how to fix it for future projects as this was already cut in size XXS.  Maybe add back darts? But that would just skew the flow, right? Or maybe it’s just my body shape.  I do resemble a pregnant stick sometimes.

All in all I’m very happy with this tunic.  It’s classy and gives out a 60’s vibe.  It’s also fun to style as you can dress up or dress down with it depending on your shoes and accessories.  Here in Prague it’s ridiculous to be out walking in heels in those cobblestones so flats it will be for Saiph and I.

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Pattern:  Saiph Tunic by Papercut Patterns

Fabric used: Rayon

xoxo

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DIY Phone case

The good part about cleaning your apartment is finding random things that you could upcycle.  The bad part is that these things only add to your growing pile of must upcycle.

Such is the case of these old jeans.  They were just sitting in my stash box until last weekend when I suddenly had an epiphany.  A phone case it’s going to be!

My very cheap case has seen better days but I refuse to buy a sturdy one from Samsung or any fancy one from any fancy store.  Phone cases in Prague are so ridiculously expensive. Lucky me Lillian gave me a pink one for my birthday, but if you’re around preschoolers it’s advisable to have your gadgets fully armored.  A case in a case is how it is.

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I can probably make at least 5 more phone cases from this pair of jeans, or even a purse! Ah focus, focus.

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I just traced my old case near the hem, adding half a centimeter to the dimension before cutting. I also traced the loop. I have no tool for snap buttons but I figured I can just use any normal button I can find.

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Because the fabric isn’t sturdy for a case, I had to to use fusible fleece to pad and stabilize it. See next photo below.

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Now the two pieces are more stable. There’s no need to use interfacing for the loop pieces though. Note to self: Always have fusible fleece/interfacing in your stash. They often come in handy.

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Next step is to run a zigzag stitch on top to prevent the pieces from fraying. I used two different thread colors for fun.

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Sides and bottom were sewn with a half centimeter seam allowance.

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Time to flip the case inside out with my ever favorite tool for this job; a chopstick! Et viola the phone case is ready, that is if you don’t want any loop to button/snap it shut. But if you do, sew the loop like in the photo above and also flip it using a chopstick.

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Sew the open bottom of the loop to the top edge of the back case.

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Sew a buttonhole to the loop. This was my first time ever to sew one and it was a bit of a nightmare. I don’t know if it was me or my buttonhole foot but I couldn’t get the right size of the hole. In the end I sewed it using the usual zigzag foot but adjusting the pattern selector for buttonholes. I also hand sewn the button because I had no more patience left for errors.

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Woooh, it’s done!

Now what would I do next from those jeans? Another phone case? A purse or another cosmetics bag? Ah, the choices are endless…

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Flutter in Winter

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Am I obsessed with this pattern or what?  This is the fourth time I’ve sewn Flutter,  three for me and one for a friend.  I love how you can finish this tunic or top in a day.  I also love how comfortable it is, how I can wear it at school  without feeling overdressed sitting on the floor trying to make several munchkins concentrate on an activity, and still feeling feminine and stylish.  Stylish and pre-school may not rhyme for other people, but I’m one of those who have to be satisfied with how they’re dressed so they function properly at work.  My mantra is ” Do good, feel good, look good,” but the sequence gets jumbled oftentimes.  Heh.

I wanted to finish this tunic just in time for a pre New Year party with friends.  The theme was shiny, shimmery, splendidly blue.  (That’s what happens when a self- appointed organizer gets high on white flower or efficascent oil haha).  I thought I would just accessorize it well and it would be perfect for the occasion.  It could have been if I had the energy to have it done on time.  Shoulda, woulda, coulda are the last words of a procrastinating seamstress.

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The fabric is a lightweight cotton that’s quite slippery and stretchy.  I don’t know what it’s exactly called except that it’s a pain to sew.  Annoyingly, the two back pieces ended up in differently lengths.  Beats me how it happened considering how meticulous I am with the cutting and all.  Even with all the adjustments I did, I still ended up with an asymmetrical tunic with a back seam that stubbornly swerves to the left.

Note to self: be wary of fabrics that are suspiciously cheap.  I guess for less than €4, this one is expected to act up.  I shouldn’t also be bitching about it since I got it for free hehe. Thanks, Marianne! Yes, this is the one you bought for me at Látky Mráz.

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So it finally snowed a lot in Prague.  Last month was pretty warm with the day temperature abnormally reaching 16°C.  Everyone thought winter would never happen, even the plants and animals.  The trees were flowering thinking it was already spring, the birds seemed to have delayed or cancelled their trip down south, and the kids at school grumbled why they were going to a winter camp when there was no snow.  You bet a lot of people squealed in delight when the landscape finally transformed into a white wonderland.  Me being the loudest.

These photos were taken today at the woods near our apartment.  Good thing my photographer, aka my husband,  has already recovered from a two-week sickness to be out for a very quick photo shoot.  The temperature was -1°C so kids, don’t try this at home.

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Happy 2016 everyone!  May this year be our best ever!

xoxo

Posted in DIY, Dresses, Sew, Tops | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

Handmade presents: cosmetic bags

Now that Christmas is over, it’s safe to slowly start posting some of the items I sewed for friends and family, some as presents while a couple are dresses two friends wanted to wear for Christmas and/or New Year.

For presents,  I sewed a lot of cosmetic bags in different fabrics and sizes.  Adi and I did well this year as our Christmas presents were all ready at the beginning of December.  The only drawback is that I dilly-dallied in taking photos of my makes thinking I had so much time for it then totally forgot about it.  Good thing I was able to snatch photos of the ones for my sister-in-law, just a few minutes before driving to the in-laws’ place for Christmas.

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The pattern is again from So Sew Easy.  To make a smaller bag,  I just took an inch off from the original dimension.  These two fit perfectly well together.

I can’t stress it enough that I love handmade items.  The time and energy given to create them is what makes each item so special.  In a world where everything moves at a breakneck speed, time is the best gift you could ever give to someone, right? Right!!!  * That’s about a thousand of  my clones agreeing in unison.*

How was your holiday sewing been like?  Mine isn’t over as I thought.  There’s still this blue dress glaring at me.  I promised to finish it today so I could wear it to a party tomorrow but after a sleepless night (maybe I ate too much nuts in my cookies that I couldn’t sleep?), even glaring back at it is already draining me out.   We’ll see.

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