Tag Archives: Citizens of Gigglesville

A New Hobby

29 Nov

M1 recently gifted me a new hobby kit – a complete felting kit. I talked about wanting to try felting but never followed through because I was obsessed with crafting DIY miniatures. She must have remembered and bought the kit for me to try. Of course, I was thrilled when I received it.

The latest activity to try

But I was also afraid to even start on it. What if I don’t like this new hobby? What if I do like it? Then, how do I plan my schedule? As it is, I have so many things to do to keep me busy.

There’s the crafting of DIY miniatures. Currently, I am at the tail-end of DIY project number 22. And there’s carving on balsa and meranti wood to make my Citizens of Gigglesville and gnomes of all shapes and sizes.

Let’s not even delve into painting, which I have my easel and several canvases sitting there collecting dust. Throw in the cooking, cleaning, golf, and occasionally, some design work – there’s hardly any time left. And now, with a new hobby venture, how do I divide my time? Tough.

DIY Project #14 or 12B, Part 3

11 Jun

I breezed through DIY project number 14 or 12B effortlessly. I guess when I put all my energy and focus into it, the job gets done faster. Despite it being a complicated set, it was challenging yet enjoyable, and I finished it in 13 days. Quite a feat, I’d say.

Welcome to my Bookstore!
Lovely angles of the Bookstore

But soon after the completion, I decided to take a break from building miniatures. And instead, I channeled my creativity back to carving! It felt good.

Not whales because I ran out of the specific wood size, nor Citizens of Gigglesville but Gnomes, albeit a different approach. I found a forgotten piece of wood and decided to carve three Gnomes in one go.

A trio of Gnomes!

It has been very exhilarating to carve again. My progress so far is pretty good, and as I anticipate the MCO will extend for another 14 days until the end of the month, I can get this display piece completed in no time. Awesome.

The Perfect Cuppa

12 Apr

Two years ago, after months of serious searching, I finally found the perfect teacup to use with my Nessie and the Deep Tea Diver tea gadgets. And coincidentally, the glass cup is a whale-themed one, perfect for me who, once upon a time, carved Whales (besides my Gnomes and Citizens of Gigglesville). These days, there is hardly any carving done because I ran out of wood.

Anyway, the teacup comes with a ceramic lid and spoon and just nice to keep my tea hot. However, these days I hardly go into the office because of the pandemic and MCO restrictions. The glass cup and the two tea gadgets are left unused. Pity.

Nessie and the whale glass cup

Excuses! Excuses!

18 Dec

I find myself admiring and playing with project number eight instead of finishing it up. Every evening, I would place a Citizen of Gigglesville on the sofa chair and giggle at the scene before me. It’s very entertaining!

Citizens visiting the Study
Looking very contented!
Citizen #118 doing a balancing act

I am finding excuses to procrastinate and not to start on the lights. There’s the fact that I have work to do in the office this whole week, and I don’t have the time because I’m also playing golf and cooking. It’s becoming a mental block.

Honestly, I find reading instructions is not something I enjoy. But doing up the lights requires focus, and I need to be more disciplined about this if I intend to wrap up project number eight before Christmas. So, no more excuses!

DIY Project #8, Part 3

14 Dec

The tail-end of project number eight is just so hard! I find that I do not quite enjoy making chandeliers or hanging lights for all my sets. The last complicated one during project number five was a let-down. After painstakingly working on them and putting them up, the middle light did not work. I was disappointed.

Gotta push myself to do the lights

So here I am, procrastinating on this lighting challenge. I thought I would take some time to finish this project, but I’m much faster than anticipated. All the shelves, books, and accessories are done and placed accordingly to the plan as outlined. Even the sofa chair, which initially, I thought would be a challenge, was completed without issues. I even took the initiative to change the color of the main wall.

The making of a sofa chair
The completed sofa chair

Well, I’m pushing myself to wrap this up soon because I’m keen to get started on project number nine, a fruit shop similar to project number seven, the tea parlor. In other words, it is an easy set, and it would be nice to end the tumultuous year working on something easy without any added stress.

Making my Citizens try the sofa chair. Some are happy, some are not!

Another Proud Moment

14 Aug
My beautiful home

The two-story bungalow is finally complete! Yay. Towards the end of the project, I was sidetracked with my busy golf schedule, cooking, and my unfortunate mishap. But all’s good now.

The set has been very challenging from the start. From wiring, wall alignments to dealing with fabrics, it was a test of patience and skills. But I suppose I can be forgiven if the set has not been perfect because after all, this was my first DIY project.

Gaps in the wall and windows but not obvious at a glance
Messy wiring & difficult sofas

The wiring was stressful compared to the cafe because firstly, it’s a much bigger set, and secondly, there are more light points. The biggest challenge, however, was dealing with fabrics. The pillows! Ugh. The last few pillows delayed the completion of the set. I sat myself down and got this over and done with when I couldn’t do other things much because of my recent fall.

Citizens of Gigglesville testing the sofas before the pillows were added

It was another proud and exciting moment when I switched on the lights. I could feel a sense of accomplishment. So now, this piece is being displayed on the dining table, together with the cafe.

Looks gorgeous when lighted up!

It’s Rather Monumental

8 Jun
My eight inch Monument of Gigglesville

As expected, I didn’t take long to complete carving my latest Monument. I am proud to say it’s rather monumental. At a towering height of eight inches, this piece is by far my biggest monument.

I’ve also decided to put it to good use rather than displaying it on the shelf like the rest of the other Monuments.

The wedge

Supporting it will be a wedge that I had painstakingly used the wood planer to shave off to get the correct angle as a door stopper! Clever, ain’t I? It should look good and certainly very practical.

Stay tuned for the final piece!

MCO, Day 3

20 Mar

We have been under Movement Control Order (MCO) as instructed by the government and today is Day 3. I must say it has been good so far. I wake up when I am done sleeping. Then I have my tea at a leisurely pace because I don’t have to get ready for work to face the challenges ahead.

The number one worry-free plus point from this experience: no stress over the car next to our reserved parking lot at the office. The lady driver always, without fail, parks her car very close to our lot (and not in the center of hers) whenever she arrives before us, thus giving me very little room to get out of my car. A two weeks’ break from this daily annoyance is certainly welcomed.

We’ve been enjoying the comforts of home as I spent most of my time carving whilst hubby would be out in the garden tending to his plants. In between, I have been preparing meals and doing some light chores around the house. So domesticated. Hahaha…

My daily routine now: carving Whales

After lunch, I carved. And carved and carved. Then I would get dinner ready. The best part, we have been having pre- and post-dinner drinks more often than before. Whiskey, gin, wine and beer… we’re doing it all.

Then it’s Netflix all the way until bedtime. And this routine will be repeated day in, day out until the end of the month.

The downside from this partial lockdown: no golf until the end of the month as well! We contemplated taking walks in the evenings to address the exercise portion of our lives. Hmm… then again, doing house chores is exercising too.

The upcoming weekend may see a break in pattern or most likely not. Everyday feels like a weekend now. And so far so good, we are still sane.

New Carving Direction

3 Feb

It’s February already but I must say with the new year and new decade, I thought it’d be good if I embarked on new shapes to carve to expand my collection and ability.

Towards the end of last year, I was debating what I should carve next when my margarita partner sort of decided for me. She was in Japan (last year) and stumbled upon some cute figurines during her travel. And after several exchanges with me on WhatsApp, I decided on this cute little Yew wood piece from Takayama. It’s not cheap, let me tell you.

img_7672

My carving/whittling skills have improved tremendously from my first piece to what I am able to do now. But I want to push myself further to do more challenging pieces. So cute little bird will be my mould to try. So stay tuned for the progress on this!

Looking Back at 2019

31 Dec

Well well… it looks like another year has gone by again. Time to file the memories away to recall later fondly and another set of annual resolutions to make. Or break. But the end of 2019 is much more than another year gone by, it’s the end of a decade!

Looking back, I’ve had my fair share of good memories and heartaches with many things happening in the year. After all, there’s 365 days. What stood out most for me can be summed up to these.

Both girls are all grown up, with one having graduated and continuing on with grad school in the US and the other just starting college in Ireland. Proud parent moments. Then there’s me reaching the milestone big five birthday. Happy me occasion.

My carving hobby resulted in a mixed growth in Gigglesville’s population this year. There were only 13 new Citizens to reach 194 (I couldn’t push myself to reach 200), the Whales grew to 48, with 30 new ones while the Gnomes had only two new giant ones to make three dozen as of 2019. It could be better.

But with this carving activity, there was a price to pay: my aggravated injuries. My golf game suffered as a consequence and for the first time, I find myself not giving the sport any priority anymore. I lost the will to excel when injuries persisted. Hopefully this mindset can change to a more positive one come 2020.

Besides the sports injury, my endometriosis pain was well, a pain to deal with this year. More acute than ever, I was at the mercy of a monthly recurrence, it was dreadful. So I started the 16/8 intermittent fasting diet to manage the painful backache and cramp attacks. With a controlled diet and a list of food to avoid, losing a fair bit of weight along the way was a booster and motivation too besides minimizing the agony. It helped.

Not everything was rosy and good though. My iPad Mini has been wonky and unreliable with each passing day, my MacBook Air had to be resuscitated but nothing compared to losing our beloved English bulldog, Rooney aka official pet number one to old age and sickness. It was the saddest day of our lives and suddenly, the house was emptier than ever and our lives changed.

Looking back, if I were to put 2019 into perspective of a phrase, ‘the good, the bad and the ugly’ aptly summarizes the year for me. Now as I ponder what to expect for the new year and new decade, I hope it will be one that focuses on ‘the good, the better and the best’. No resolutions needed though.

To everyone, here’s wishing you an awesome 2020 ahead, Happy New Year and Goodbye 2019!