Thursday, August 28, 2014

Adventures in Upholstery - 7'4" Bench, Anyone?

As a break from doing lots and lots of restaurant boothing, we got to upholster a very long bench.  It was fun.  Now I want one.  Mind you, quite a bit shorter.  This one is 7'4".  You could fit two small people in there!

Erickson is photobombing.  I love it.
 We made a 3" seat cushion for the top.  Done exactly like all our other booth seats, so that wasn't much of a stretch.  Except for the ridiculous length!  It's nearly twice as long as most of our booth seats, which usually fall between 48" and 66".  This one is 88".
 Juffrey is admiring how nice and tight he made this.  *Smack!*  
I love my job.  We are having so much fun working together as a team.  Good things are happening!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Miette Hot Springs

On Saturday, we went for a day trip to Jasper, Alberta.  Last summer we discovered the Miette Hot Springs, and it was so much fun, we had to go back.
 The hot springs are just inside the park border east of Jasper.  They are up the road where the Pocahontas Cabins are.  17 km up a nicely paved, windy road.
The water comes from natural hot springs that are so hot (54 C) that they have to cool the water down.  There are 4 pools, and each of them is a different temperature.  There are warm, very warm(40 C), cold (20 C), and really cold (18 C).  
 These are the cold pools. (below)  Ultimately, the most fun place to be.  It's hilarious to watch everyone's faces when they step into the cold water.  So funny!  It's really refreshing, though.  Similar to a contrast bath at physio.  Hot water, then cold water, then hot, then cold.  It's very good for you.  And the more you switch between the hot and cold water, the easier it becomes.  Last summer, we weren't brave enough to dip into the really cold water, but this year we did, and I actually liked it!  Of course, you can't stay submerged for as long, but it feels soooooo good.  I can usually stay in the hot water for about 10 minutes, and the cold water for almost that long.  The really cold water, I can only stand for about 3 minutes.
Someday I will have to invest in a waterproof digital camera so I can take my own pictures.  I got all these off Google images.  It is a really gorgeous place.  And it wasn't that busy for being a long weekend!  We were really impressed.  I'd love to go in the Fall sometime.  It's open until October 14th.  And did I mention that it's only 6 bucks a person?!
 We went into Jasper for an early supper at Jasper Brewing Company.  I discovered another cider that I absolutely love!  Williams Cider was on tap, and I think this might be a new favourite.  It was sooo good.  After supper we went for a walk up and down the streets.  In front of the same train that we took our selfie, we saw a big wedding party getting their photos taken.  Pretty spectacular, hey?  I love the different coloured bridesmaid dresses.  Just like my Grandma Marion's wedding back in the early 50's.  :)
It was a gorgeous day in the mountains.  We are lucky to have so much beauty in our own backyard.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

We got to go for a motorbike ride!

Last Saturday, we went down to visit Ty's best buddy, Wes.  Wes has two motorcycles.  One is a BMW sport bike, and the other is a street legal dirtbike.  Ty had a 250 dirtbike when he was a teenager.  Him and the guys used to drive for hours from farm to farm.  So, he's an old pro.
 Ty and Wes came up with the great idea for all of us to go for a ride.  I rode with Wes, who is a more seasoned rider.
 One thing that Ty and I have lots of is helmets.  We actually brought 3 with us.  My mom gave me this pink one.  It's a top quality helmet.  It fits great, and the visor shuts completely!
 Ty wore his racing helmet.  I bought this for him for Christmas when we were first together.  Still one of my favourite memories.  I kept it a secret, and you should've seen his face when he opened it.  He was like a little kid.  :D
 We rode around town for a while, then stopped for coffee at this uber cool coffee shop.  This is an old double-decker bus.  How cool is that?!
 Then we went out on some country highways.  Lots of curvy corners.  Most of the way, it was only 80 km/h.  The thing I noticed more than anything is that you can smell all the smells!  The country smells so good!  I even love the smell of manure.  No, really!  It reminds me of my friends' farm that was my favourite place on earth when I was a kid.  Happy memories.  :)
We stopped at a day camp area by the river.  When you're biking, you have to take lots of breaks.  Especially when you're on bikes like these.
 It was a lovely pitstop.
 We managed to make it back home before it started raining.  All in all, it was a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon.  I can't wait to do it again!

This is why I haven't been sewing...

My sewing room is a mess!
 I took these pictures in January.  This situation has not improved.  If anything, it's gotten worse.  There is a spare bed under there somewhere.  LOL
 So, this weekend, our condo had a garage sale.  The condo board (which my husband is on) decided to rent a dumpster.  Yay!  
 So, far, I haven't found much garbage.  95% of my stuff is going to be donated.  I'm ready to purge!
 This is the junk closet.  You can't even walk in here.  I would like to get this set up with a small table and a couple sewing machines, to free up more space in the actual bedroom.  
 I have about 6 sewing machines, and I intend to use about 4 of them.  I would also like to save up for a separate coverstitch machine.  Mine is an 8-thread Babylock, so it does both, but it's nice to have a separate one when doing lots of knits.  I'm also saving up for a corner sewing cabinet.  A really nice one.  Costs about $1700.  And I'm worth it.  :D

So, today I started in earnest.  I already accidentally found a permanent home for my laptop!

This is one of my sewing cabinets.  There's a nice Singer in this one.  But I don't intend to use it until I get more organized.  So, for now, it will be home for my computer.  I brought it in here so I could listen to my iTunes.  It's such a perfect spot!
Anyways, I better quit blogging and playing on the computer and get back to work!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Queen & Adam Lambert Concert!

 I have been a big fan of Adam Lambert since his first single came out.  Unfortunately, I quit watching American Idol maybe a year or two before he was on.  I regret not watching it and seeing him make his amazing way through the competition.  I have seen some of his YouTube clips, but it's not the same as watching it live and getting super excited when someone is as talented as he.
 I am also a big fan of Queen.  I absolutely love Classic Rock, especially the 60's and early 70's.  Every time I learn a certain song is by Queen, I am more and more impressed by their repertoire.

I heard Adam Lambert was joining Queen for a big concert in Europe two years ago.  I thought that he was so perfect for them.  A few weeks ago, I was thinking about this and wondering if they happened to have a concert DVD I could watch.  And then I got invited to see the Backstreet Boys.  I happened to look up the BSB concert on Ticketmaster to confirm whether it started at 7 or 7:30.  And lo and behold, I see a banner ad at the top of the screen that said QUEEN + ADAM LAMBERT.  I nearly flipped.
I immediately started planning to go.  First, I asked my friend, Brady, if he would like to go with me, but he's being a frugal student for the next 4 years, and politely declined.  I knew I wanted to go no matter what, so I decided to go by myself.  Single seats are one of the best ways to get a decent spot a few weeks before the show, right?

I ended up with a great spot only two sections away from the stage.  
Before the show started, I patiently waited in line for a t-shirt.  I love t-shirts, and will collect them if they show off something I’m passionate about.  
Anyways, on with the show!
It was so awesome.  They played favourite hits interspersed with lesser-known songs, and newer stuff.  The mix was very tastefully done.
Adam was absolutely astounding.  I would watch him sing anything for hours and hours on end.  He was totally himself, and his stage presence was unbelievable.  He puts so much feeling and meaning into everything he sings.  During some of the songs I didn’t know, I wished I knew the words, because he was so expressive and passionate with every word!
Even though he was undoubtedly the biggest star of the show, the producers made sure to balance it out so the two members of Queen got their due.  
Adam went backstage a couple times and let the other guys shine.  There was a simple acoustic set, and later on there was a long drum solo/drum-off, and a guitar solo.  Classic rock stars at their best.  Incredibly entertaining.
The end of the show couldn’t have been done more perfectly.  The last song of the set was Bohemian Rhapsody.  They did it justice, no question.  It started out with Adam singing, and then went to a video clip of Freddie Mercury singing at a live show.  During the “Mamma Mia” section, they played the original music video with the four heads, etc.  They ended it off with a little bit of Adam, a little bit of Freddie.  It was absolutely perfect.  That ended the show.
After a few minutes, they came back out for the encore.  I had to think for a minute, because obviously, Bohemian Rhapsody is their biggest hit.  Finally, I remembered that they hadn’t played We are the Champions.  Of course!  How appropriate!  A very fun, very theatrical, very big song to end off the show.  Adam came out in a leopard print suit and a crown.  
The encore only consisted of this song, and they ended their show very simply and tastefully with a few bows and waves.  It was a very joyous, lovely way to end the show.  Absolutely perfect.
One of the highlights of the show was the disco ball.  Words cannot describe how unbelievably epic this was.  It slowly came down from the ceiling, and the light changed and moved all the way down.  It filled every corner of the arena.  Things like this are one of my favourite parts of live concerts.  You just cannot capture that in a photo or a video.  
Now, can I talk about Adam’s costumes?  So much fun!
He started the show in this little ensemble.  Studded leather jacket, shades, and platform boots.  Absolute rockstar.
I think this little ditty was my favourite.  That fringe!
And of course, the leopard print suit and crown.  
I had such a blast soaking up his essence.  He is one in a million.  :)
I am beyond thrilled that I stumbled upon this concert.  It is a memory I will cherish forever.  :D

Fun Upholstery Update

I haven't said it in a while, but I still love my job.  I am absolutely blessed.  We live in our own little world upstairs in our huge woodwork shop.  It's just the three of us, and it's very cozy.  Our workspace is close enough to the offices that we get an awesome wi-fi signal.  I found some big iPod speakers at a garage sale not too long ago, and I am the DJ.  I have the Slacker Radio app, and I love it.  The guys love music, and they seem to be happy with whatever I play.    I like variety, so I change stations every day, sometimes twice a day.    This is something I am thankful for every day.
 This week we are working on 57 booths.  These are the parts to cover the seats.  Above are the panels, and below are the sides.  I cut these out in just over a day, and it will take me about a full day and a half to sew them.
 This is what they look like on the finished product.  :)
 Downstairs, upstairs, everywhere, we are surrounded by piles and piles and piles of boothing.  I believe we are working on 3 different projects.  The guys downstairs are building these for us.  Often we build our own.  I love dabbling in woodwork.  The project we are currently upholstering consists of 57 booths, which includes a bottom base (usually covered in carpet or rubber), a top base, a seat, and a backrest.  All four pieces are approximately the same size when finished.  Lots and lots and lots of rectangles!
 Here are backrests on the right and bases on the left.  Top and bottom bases are almost the same.  Top bases get upholstered.
 Like this!  Bottom bases are left plain and covered on-site.
  
 Upstairs in our workspace, this is Jerry's current pile of backrests.
 And here is Jerry.  This is a great shot.  It captures his smiling face.  He's almost always happy.
 This is Juffrey.  Him and I get along extremely well.  We make a good team.  He is very good at upholstery, even though he only has 2 or 3 years of experience.  He's a perfectionist.  He does very nice work.  :)
 And last but not least, here's me!  I've decided to make a simple change and go for a 12-20 minute walk on my half-hour lunch break.  I say 12-20 minutes because that's the range I've ended up with in my first four days.  :)  The faster I eat, the longer I get to walk.  I'm pleasantly surprised that this is a habit that so far is really enjoyable.  I look forward to going, and I enjoy being outside.  This trail is about 4 minutes away from our shop.  It's quite lovely.  The rain didn't even stop me today!  I brought my jacket, and the skies smiled upon me and the rain let up enough that I didn't need my hood.  It was merely spitting.  It felt really good after our little heat wave.  :)
Happy Thursday!