Saturday, February 3, 2018

The Greatest Showman

Last Saturday I went to see the movie called "The Greatest Showman". It was absolutely fantastic. It was so good I actually went and saw it again the very next day, and then saw it again a few days later!
If you have not seen it, I highly recommend it as it is definitely a movie that needs to be seen on the big screen.
The genre is similar to my other two favorite movies, Les Miserables and Moulin Rouge. It is visually stunning, has lovely costumes, great music, singing, and of course, fabulous choreography. Best of all, it actually has a great story!
(My kids want to see it again, so maybe sometime this week we will see it again.)

My husband always buys flowers for our anniversary and the cats seem to enjoy them as well.
Mr Nova loves to admire them up close. (I have to watch him like a hawk otherwise he will knock them over and try to eat them.)
Most normal people keep their flowers on the kitchen table but mine have to live in my office to keep them safe from the beasts!

(Go see "The Greatest Showman" before it disappears from the theatres.)
Cheerio,
Sam

Friday, January 26, 2018

Cats Play With Lego Blocks Too!

Hi everyone,
This is just a shameless plug of cute cat pictures that were taken a few years ago.

My kids had been playing with Legos and toy animals while Nova and Kovu watched.




Cheerio,
Sam

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Hazel's House (Roofing) - Part Six

Hi everyone,
Of course I had to let the tree grow into and onto the roof!

Tree branches just have life of their own. (And yes, the front panel still opens up.)


Now the next picture is a bit of a failure and it is too late to go and photograph it again.
It is supposed to be showing how the three stories stack together with the new roof.
However, the top layer is actually on backwards!
You are looking at the back of the house and the front of the third story. Oh well.
Cheerio,
Sam

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Hazel's House (Roofing) - Part Five

Hi everyone,
The exterior of Hazel's house is now finished, and the paper mache is drying.
There's only one problem – I hate the roof.
The original plan was to have a roof garden, but to put it simply, I have cats.
(A smorgasbord of delectable plastic plants would be irresistible to my beasts.)

The old roof from Dr Zoe's house has been sitting in my office, and I wondered if it would fit this house. So I tried it.
Here it is from the front,

the back,

and the side - perfect!

Inside you can see that there is a gap at the back, but that can easily be filled in with scrap wood.

I think Fairy Hazel should be happy with the new roof. It will give her some extra storage too!
Cheerio,
Sam

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Paper Mache Fun

Hi everyone,
I have been having a blast doing paper mache on my dollhouses. Probably the best thing about doing paper mache is that once you start, you cannot stop to answer the phone, cook meals or even do chores! You are literally up to your elbows in glue.
I have been watching 'Everybody Loves Raymond' on DVD while I'm working. Well, not exactly 'watching', but more like listening and having a good laugh. (If you have in-laws you can relate to some of the situations.)
Here are my secret ingredients (well, not so secret) for adding texture to Hazel's house - white glue, water and paper towels.




Cheerio,
Sam

Saturday, December 30, 2017

The Visalian - Part Two

Hi everyone.
I hope you all had a great Christmas and I want to wish you all a Happy New Year.
You are probably all wondering why I had Kinsey's house upside down the other week.

I was doing some paper mache on the walls. Why am I doing that?
Well, the wood in this house is delaminating in some areas and it is very uneven.

See the naughty wall with the arrows down below?
Well this piece gave me an armful of splinters, 31 to be exact.
I was removing the wall when it suddenly gave way, and my right arm slid right across it.

All I could say was "Silly wall, now you look ugly with half your wood missing," when all of a sudden I felt searing pain in my wrist and forearm.
I then noticed I had a million slivers of wood in the area below the wrist where the tender, delicate piece of skin that barely covers the veins is.
Shaking like crazy, I got one of my kids to hold a magnifying glass while I very carefully pulled them all out - and with my left hand too!
Let me tell you that this is the absolute WORST place on your body to get a splinter.
I wish I had a photograph, but at the time I was just too preoccupied with surviving.

I am also toying around with some LED lights I have from IKEA.
No, these are not silver snakes but maybe the beginnings of a tree-like ceiling texture.

Cheerio,
Sam

Friday, December 15, 2017

Apple Blossom - Part Three

Hi everyone,
I attached the extension and I covered the house in the first layer of paper mache.
Yes, this is the embarrassing stage. It looks like a kindergarten project - not something a grown up would make.
I do have a rough vision of what this should look like one day.

This house will now sit up above my desk for a few weeks to make sure it is completely dry before I add anymore layers.

I think I will make a back for this dollhouse. The new windows are rather large and you can see too much background. Anyway, it will help keep out dust (and inquisitive little kitty cats!).
Speaking of whom, here is a quick pic of my boys.

Cheerio,
Sam

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Apple Blossom - Part One

Hi everyone.
Although work continues on Kinsey's, Hazel's and Dr Zoe's houses, I am also working on Luka's old house. For me, working on multiple houses is how I operate.
Here is the before picture.
And here it is "in progress".
I totally demolished the right side extension and rebuilt it. The original was made from cheap Balsa wood that was completely caving in on itself.
As for the tower, I was considering adding brick or stone to it when Luka stepped in. He said that he wanted it to look like Hazel's house, as he thought the tree-like texture was very interesting.
I must say, it is kind of difficult renovating a house as it is turning into a tree before your very eyes!

I enlarged the windows and moved the front door to the tower. I also cut out the wall to the extension for a more open concept.

Finally, here are the finished "bones" and the new second floor balcony. (I still need to attach the extension.)

And on a final note - I was in the thrift store when I came across this dollhouse for only $18.

You may notice this picture was taken inside my office – yes, I had to have it! I know it is another Apple Blossom, but for a solid wood dollhouse, the price was too good to leave behind. However, when I got it home, one of my kids claimed it for their own.
(Apparently, I am not allowed to have two dollhouses that are the same!)
Cheerio,
Sam

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Thanksgiving

Hi all.
I hope everyone who celebrated Thanksgiving had a good one. I had to host it for the first time EVER. (It is kind of weird that the only Australian in our group of relatives is the one who prepared an American Thanksgiving meal!)
We had a total of twenty-five relatives over for dinner. Even though I am not a cook, I managed to get the main meal together. Of course the highlight was dessert. Thankfully my sister-in-law and her kids are expert pie makers and came to my house early in the day to make them. We had various pies including pumpkin, peanut butter, mince-meat, and my two utmost favorites - apple and pecan. They were totally delicious!

We spent three days celebrating together and playing many rounds of Bananagrams. (If you have never played this game I highly recommend it. It is faster and easier than Scrabble and everyone can join in.)
The visitors have gone now and we are getting back to normal.
I know Kinsey is about to be homeless so I am working as fast as I can on her house.
YES, I KNOW KINSEY'S HOUSE IS UPSIDE-DOWN. (I am working on the interior.)

Cheerio,
Sam