Sunday, June 15, 2014

June 15, 2014

Last weekend was busy indeed.  I took a rare vacation day on Friday 6-6-14 to set up the Nar Shaddaa Base display at the Joliet Historical Museum for the 5th Annual Joliet Library Star Wars Day.  Where the display was slightly smaller than last year, it still took a lot of effort to select, pack, load, unload and set up.  I got to the Museum around 10:30 AM and spent several hours doing set up. 

We also had a request to make an appearance Friday night at the Joliet Slammers game, so I brought an extra costume with me.  After I finished setting up the Nar Shaddaa Base display, I went over to the Library to help haul some pieces for the Library display down but had to get back to the Museum, pick up my Rebel Fleet Commander costume and head to Silver Cross Field for the Slammers game.  It was a warm evening, but thankfully not too hot as the Commander costume can be a little warm.  I forgot to pack a pair of socks to wear in the RFC boots, so had to use the slouch socks I had on and that didn't work out well.  At least the costume still  It has been quite some time since I wore that costume and it fit and was a little looser than last time I remembered wearing it.  Always a good thing.

I stayed at that Slammers game longer than I intended and as soon as I got home I gathered some other last minute things together for the next day.  I got up early (as usual) and got suited up in my Jedi costume and headed to Joliet around 6:30 AM.  It was mass chaos and a blur from then on.  The event went well and has gotten so large that it is a bit scarry. 

This year things started off with a parade because the local American Legion Band wanted to join in.  From there I spent most of my day at the Base display because there was too many things that might get stolen.  The day went so fast that I can't really believe it. 

One thing that brought tears to my eyes is that the members of our Jedi Squad presented me with a new lightsaber that was constructed by one of our members.  It is a work of art and truly beautiful.  I am so grateful for it. 

I have also still been busy spraying at my restoration site.  I was out there yesterday again for 4 hours spraying all sorts of nasties.  Then there is also butterfly monitoring.  We got a really late start for monitoring this year because of the weather and the first few trips along the route have been very dismal in the amount of butterflies we have seen.  We are scheduled to head out today again and hope that we find a few more than the last trips.  While out spraying yesterday, I did see a Great Spangled Fritillary and we should have Little Wood Satyrs out. 

I have tried to get some work done in the garden as well.  I am really grateful that I started editing out some of the plants in the fall.  Things get out of control really fast and some of the plants (especially the number of asters) were out of control.  I had some issues with my "spitting carp" fountain, the thing got all of the water pumped out. Which was a good thing I guess as the pump did not sustain damage and I got a chance to clean out all of the leaves and debris out of there and re-filled it. 

The vegetable garden is doing a LOT better than last year and I actually have quite a bit growing that I could not even get started last year.  Fingers crossed that it will be a good year.  The cherry tree is disappointing this year.  Where there were tons of blooms, there are few cherries.  I don't know if the blossoms didn't get pollinated or what.

I also ended up with a new project for today.  My mailbox post has been doing the lean for a couple months now.  I finally just broke it off and will have to replace the post and mailbox today if I hope to get mail again this week so it is off to Home Depot as soon as they open.

Also started this week was a Yavin Medals project.  Since Tuesday was raining, I made a trip to Countryside to Reynolds Advanced Materials and picked up some molding and casting supplies.   Jeez...did prices on that stuff go up!!  I almost had a heart attack when the clerk told me my total bill.  I started off making a new mold for the medals and then started casting with the "cast magic" system of powders and paints for the casting materials. 

The first ones did not come out like I liked, so I switched base colors from red to blue.  I was still not very happy with that and switched to black and tried brushing the gold color powder into the mold in a different manner.  The last attempts seemed to work better and I quickly ran out of casting materials.  I ended up with about 14 useable medals and had to toss about 4 of the others.  Those medals still have to be clear coated and painted on the back, a logo decoupaged on and then a ribbon added. 

 I also hauled out my Y-Wing flak vest and will attempt making one of those for Scott from Wisconsin.