At last, it’s a bit cooler…

It’s been HOT for the last couple of days – Tuesday night was so hot that I ended up sleeping outside in a makeshift camp on the concrete under the tin roof patio – groundsheet, big cushions off the lounge, pillow, quilt, with reading light and CPAP machine hooked up to the power point that runs our rainwater tank pump –  and even though I now have 73 different itchy bites IT WAS WORTH IT.  Once the bright full moon rose over the roof I could actually get a couple of hours sleep.  I stayed out until about 3.30am, when it was cool enough to go back into the bedroom.

ACTUAL SIZE! They breed BIG mozzies up here.... (well, they felt this big...)

The cheap and nasty banana lounges went back to the big chain hardware store – they STANK!  They were unbearable.  Glad we got our money back on those.

Yesterday arvo I spent lying on the floor of the lounge wrapped in a wet towel with the fans blowing on me… I am really finding this heat difficult, and I think I have to attribute it to the change in med1cat10ns – I don’t remember struggling with it this much in previous heatwaves.

Today we did some more tie dyeing – a friend’s daughter is having a “hippy” birthday party so I offered to make her a t-shirt – and Mr Beloved needed a few too.  The shirts are baking in plastic bags in the sun and are too hot to touch – a good sign, because it helps the colours batch and become really intense. Photos to follow.

I have picked up ANOTHER damn head cold – this time it’s gone straight to my ears.  Every time I blow my nose my ears block up even more.  MISERY!!!

Right – time to get showered, do an inventory of what’s left in the fridge, and head to the greengrocer – another baking session when it cools down tonight (zucchini slice again) should see us through the next few hot days.  Just as well we don’t mind eating the same thing for a week at a time!

In other news… psychotherapy and some distractions

I saw my psychiatr1st again today.  We talked about medicat1on changes (scary!) but I don’t think I’ll be changing anything until the new year.  Frustrating but at the same time, necessary – I might need to go inpatient for a little while as we change the prescript1ons, and the ward closes over Christmas/New Years. (You don’t want to mess with psych meds, they interact unexpectedly and the changeover can be weird.)


(Look at the pretty flower and the intensely interested dog!)

Group therapy… was better last week, but still scary.  I go again tomorrow.  It’s completely exhausting.  Last week was much better than the first week, but it’s still very intense  – partly because of just HOW LONG you’re sitting there, and partly because you just don’t know what’s going to come up – and I wasn’t ready to deal with some of the issues that were raised last week. Then on Friday I had another two hours of therapy on top of groups – arrrrrgh!  My brain hurts!

Nigella damascena seedpod

I’m also doing homework  – working through some of the “Infopax” that are available FREE online from the Centre for Clinical Intervention in Western Australia.  I’m currently working through the “What me, Worry?” modules.  Their approach is based in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, which is ok – I’ll take what works for me and let what doesn’t work go.   (The group therapy and one-on-one therapy I do is based on Acceptance Commitment Therapy which is a different way of looking at things and one I find works better for me generally.)

The new door curtain

We had a disappointment with the tie dyed shirts – the sizes were WRONG!  (See this post on Mr Beloved’s blog for details – essentially, the store short-changed us in the size by saying the size was the same as last year but making the shirt SMALLER!)

Unreformed, Unapologetic Hippies


Yep. We dye and wear tie dyes.  PROUDLY!

A length of plain calico (quilter's muslin) now forever hippy-fied

This is probably going to be the new doorway curtain between the lounge and bedroom.

Grooovy, maaaan

Due to excess fabric stash and “not enough bread” we will be making clothes from this book soon.  (Well, the whole sewing room clean up thing has to happen first, and I don’t have the energy for that yet, but we have PLANS.)

And we have mung bean seeds just waiting to be sprouted.  Mmmmmm, mung bean sprouts!  I love them! Not least because they bring back memories of my childhood, when mung beans sprouted in a jar in a cupboard under the sink.  We don’t have a cupboard under the sink so I’ll probably keep them in a dark space in the bathroom.

Today is a good day to dye….

At last!  Mr Beloved and I have been planning this for a couple of weeks now but the weather (and our energy levels!) have been working against us.  Today I managed to get out of bed at a reasonable hour (read: before 10 am!) and we got started:

Getting the dyes mixed....

As you can see, we don’t dye in any sort of precise way – not like the professionals who get results they can predict!  I roughly follow the directions from the dye manufacturer (actually, I can’t remember whose dyes these are – I bought them about 6 years ago, almost certainly from KraftKolour  – the dye powder lasts for ages if you keep it in a dry and dark place) combined with information from the dyeing section of  Robbi Joy Eklow‘s book “Free Expression: The Art and Confessions of a Contemporary Quilter“.

Twisted, tucked, turned...

Here are some of Mr Beloved’s shirts, ready for the dye – he’s tried a few different patterns of resists with rubber bands and string.  Should be interesting!  We need BIG sizes of plain white t shirts with no printing on them – and it’s actually quite difficult to find them.  Whenever we see some at Lowes we grab them.  I’m not a huge fan of the pocket or the high neckline so I might modify mine….

One of Mr Beloved's shirts, dyed

Mr B likes white spaces on his shirts.

My shirts

I like LOTS of colour and not much white.

The shirts are now baking in plastic bags – they need at least 4 hours –  it’s a really good sunny day (currently 26 C) so the chemical reaction should be working beautifully.  These are fibre reactive dyes which bond with the soda ash soaked shirts, and the dyes last FOREVER.   Unfortunately that also means when you have the inevitable leak in your cheap disposable glove and dye your fingers and hands, you have to wait for the dye to WEAR off – it doesn’t wash off!

We have mixed dyes left over so I think we’ll try and find some more shirts this week.

Once the shirts have “batched” (cooked in their plastic bags in the sun) they will be untied and rinsed, then washed to remove excess dye – and with these dyes, there’s always lots of unbonded dye to wash away – that’s just how they are.  We’re supposed to get storms tomorrow so I’m not optimistic about getting them washed and dried in a hurry… but when they are I’ll post photos of the end results.

Must go and shower – the dyeing was a sweaty business – even the poor dog was feeling the heat!

Hot Dog!

(yes, our terribly baked brown yard is NOT attractive… we have bugger all topsoil after the flood, so it’s hard to get anything but weeds to grow…)

I have an appointment to get my hair cut this arvo (just a trim,nothing exciting!)  then tomorrow I’m in group therapy at the hospital from 9 til 2.  Yikes!  I’m a bit nervous about that.  At least they feed you (morning tea and lunch) but still…