Friday, May 22, 2009

The Moth Ball Saga

A really great friend of our family gave me some wonderful clothes. They were good quality, just the kind of things I would wear. But they had been stored with moth balls. Okay, no problem. I would do some research on the Internet and find out the best way to remove the moth ball smell.

Not that easy.

To give you an idea of the smell; it wasn’t just a little bit of mothball smell—it was overpowering! I sorted the clothes and decided what I would keep and what I would share with others. I did this outside! The clothes didn’t come in the house, they were too strong! Just the way my clothes smelled after sorting them was enough to make me wish I had a change with me (I was at my mother’s house). One of my nieces had never smelled really bad smells before, so she walked around holding her nose. We laughed at her and told her it wasn’t a bad smell, just really strong. Remember that the clothes didn’t come in the house- but the smell was so strong that it went all the way through the 3000 sq. ft. of the house. From being outside!

The best suggestion was time and open air. No one seemed to have a good idea for removing the smell NOW. So talking with my sister & mother, I decided that soda would be the first thing I tried. So I washed one batch of them with over 1 cup of soda. No luck.

The rest I hung out on the swing set/jungle gym to air out (wrong side out so they didn’t fade). They hung there for over 48 hours and the smell was almost as strong as it had been at first. Now what?

I brought them home and kept looking for ideas.

The reason that it was important for me to remove the smell is because our 5th grandchild is going to be born at any time and we are going to help with the 3 story house and 2 older boys so our sweet daughter-in-law can really recover. I needed these clothes and they could not smell of moth balls! Everything I read said that moth balls are toxic. That’s probably why I had such a headache after sorting them, washing some and hanging them all outside. I don’t want to take a toxic smell with me to take care of a new baby - whom I do plan on holding and snuggling!

One night, TK couldn’t go to sleep. I was blissfully snoring away, so he left the bedroom and did some work on the computer. For over 2 hours, he looked for moth ball smell removal solutions.
One thing he found was something called “Smelleze” that is only sold by distributors and not in any stores. I wasn’t going to wait to find a distributor and then pay for the product and the shipping. (Money is kinda tight right now). He also found vinegar as a solution.

Vinegar was next on my list. So I washed the already-washed-in-soda clothes with vinegar. I let them sit in the water for about an hour and then let the batch finish. That did help, but not enough. What now? It had been over a week and I hadn’t found a solution to the problem yet.

Yesterday, TK was doing a few things around the house and was getting out a horse shampoo we love. Now this horse shampoo is about 15 years old and was purchased when I was interning at the company that made it. It was called “Wonder Gold” and there is something gold that settles to the bottom after 15 years. It is not available any more. (good thing I bought 12 bottles of it)

Between the vinegar, soda and horse shampoo, the smell is reasonable. I plan to wear them and wash them a couple of times before we go take care of that sweet new baby, but there is hope now!

No, I haven't figured out the way to get the smell of moth balls out of clothes. I am just happy that what I have done has somehow helped. Each batch was washed at least 4 different times, with different things added each time. When the smell is "not too much" hanging them outside seems to do the rest. But it takes a lot to get them to the "not too much" stage!

Moral of the story:


Find something else.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

B2 is so TALENTED!!

The picture really is not enough! You want to look at it in detail for a long time. My sister, B2, is the one that created this Bride & Groom. One of our nieces is getting married and this was for her bridal shower.
What would you pay if she was doing this as a business? Just curious!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


About 2-3 weeks ago, we got a letter informing us that Dear Daughter was going to be getting an award at school and when the awards were going to be given out. They did not tell us what the award was for.

We chose not to tell her that she was going to get one until we were there last night. Looking back, it may have been a good idea to tell her and have her change out of the clothes she had worn to school, but hindsight. . .

She got the award for Outstanding 8th Grade Band Student.
Receiving her award.
With the 8th Grade Orchestra & Choir winners.

Posing for the “Kodak Moment”.

Happy Birthday M

Dear Daughter went to a birthday party for one of her friends from band. She had lots of fun.
Yes we are over 100 degrees already!

I don’t know what came over me

Sometimes I get an urge to do something silly. My children- especially the girls- have watched my antics & rolled their eyes, sending me the unmistakable message that they really didn’t appreciate my attempts at humor.

When my oldest daughter was a teenager, she started listening to a few songs that were “remakes” of songs I grew up with. As I would drive her & her friends, I just had to sing along with those songs, but I sang them the way I remembered them and not the way the remakes sounded. She hated it. Her friends thought I was a cool mom & funny. At the time, I felt vindicated—I wasn’t embarrassing her, I was just funny.

With the youngest daughter, I have had those same unique urges. I act silly, dance around oddly, speak in a language that hasn’t been invented yet & generally be myself. Her eyes roll, too.

It is worth noting that before these girls were teenagers, they would laugh at my antics. So I have to believe that it is not “ME”, but the fact that they are at that time of life when nothing Mom does is cool. I think hormones play a huge part in the eye roll.

The other night I needed to talk to Dear Daughter about something that she NEVER likes to talk about. So I grabbed a couple of pillows and stuffed them in my clothes and went to speak with her. What did she do?

“Dad, Mom’s trying to act like Nanny McPhee!”

I thought the pillows looked pretty good.

(front & back in case there is any doubt)

Monday, May 11, 2009

Friday, May 8, 2009

Need your captions

What's wrong with this truck?
Look Carefully!
Once I realized what I was looking at, my camera came out and I snapped a couple of pictures to share. When you look closely, it appears they worked at one time. But they definitely were not working when I was following. And you can tell they have been there for a while-look at the dust pattern.

I asked a couple of people for a caption.
If you have a good one, share it!

from a police officer - REDNECK IMPLANTS

Last 8th Grade Concert

"Dad's taking my picture. Dont' smile."
Mr Murphy and the band after they finished.
The Bobcat Fiddler's are great! Lot's of audience participation.

Dear Daughter with Mr Murphy. He has been a great band director.

How To Sleep- by my niece

I got to have some one-on-one time with my sweet little niece yesterday.
"I want to take a nap now so lay down."
I laid down and she promptly put her little head and body over my shoulders and neck. As soon as she had her head down, she was asleep! I found a pillow and carefully moved her off of me and onto it. She is in the same position she fell asleep--right on her face. Apparently she always sleeps that way.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Enjoy the Ride

A wonderful friend just sent me this little video. Thanks, Robin, for your random email of kindness. I loved it.

Made me feel calm and happy about what I will do today.

Helped me remember what is more important-
people more than things,
life more than rush.

Best of all--It made me smile!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


I am trying to make changes to my blog and things are coming out looking rather funky.

Just be patient and it will look okay. Eventually.

At least that's what I keep telling myself.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Beaded Pieces

These are some pictures from just ONE of the displays one exhibit.

There are one or two women that create these beautiful beaded pieces for the Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef. They are amazing. In fact, there are beaded items in 3 or 4 of the displays. Not just one piece but almost the whole display is beaded.

My pictures don't so them justice. I wish my daughter in law was here to get some great pictures for me.

Friday, May 1, 2009

The PLARN Class

Thursday night there was a class at the Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef Exhibit about how to crochet a tote bag out of plastic bags. This class will be held the last Thursday of the month during the exhibit (April, May, June) at 6 pm in the Gallery@ the Library at the exhibit. You will learn how to turn your plastic bags into PLARN (plastic yarn) and then you will have help to start crocheting the plarn into a tote bag following a pattern provided.

Last night I was so busy that I didn't remember to take pictures until a few people had already left. But I did get those who were still there. It was a good group last night; some who had crocheted, some who hadn't, we even had a mother & daughter come together. Some Picked it up easily, others struggled. But everyone learned how to make the bags into plarn and got a start on their tote bags.

Some that attenede will finish their bags, regardless of how they look. But I worry about others who were really struggling! I wish I could help them more often because they will feel such a sense of accomplishment if they finish. If the plarn is too difficult, switch to yarn and use the same pattern. BUT JUST FINISH SOMETHING!!

Bye, Emily. We will miss you. Have fun on the farm! Crochet something while you are gone.

In hopes of encouraging all of you to finish, I am posting links to some How-to-crochet video tutorials.