Sunday, April 17, 2016

In their natural habitat

Lily's Lab:  21st Century Potions
Lily is generally in her designated lab space when not being pressed into service as a model.  Right now she's enjoying having both a laptop and a potion brewing setup.  Tucked back against the wall is a first aid kit for any mishaps.  And yes, she realizes that coffee (that small blue cup) and potions do not quite mix.  That said, no one else here quite has the nerve to cut off her coffee supply.

Shepard's Cabin:  Designated Geek Space
Shepard's room got massively refurbished in the last month and a half, starting with the inclusion of the old 1990s school desk and mini Mac.  Eventually, the Mac will work like a real computer, but not yet.  The old acrylic shelves and drawer sets were condensed and reorganized and turned into the hutch setup around the desk (with the aid of a few foam core scraps to make up the height difference between the stack of drawers and the desk).

The hutch setup has the old Blasto (the first Hanar Spectre) comic book, the Lord of the Rings collection (with a model of the One Ring tucked in a drawer), assorted wargaming miniatures, and a mini martini set.  Also included are a hamster (of the miniature giant space variety) and a fish tank (no feeding necessary).  The white shelves were a foam core project meant to replicate IKEA shelving for dolls.  It currently still has 5 empty blocks, but it's only a matter of time...

The empty shelves are dedicated to a set of doll-sized science books that are slowly being made.  There will be 100 total when the set is complete, and the current status is 41/100.  And the other set of tiny books?  The complete 1950s New Basic Readers.

Nellie's Study:  Currently Taken Over by Cats
Nellie's room used to be one of the nicer rooms before several furniture shuffles and decorating sprees.  Sadly, it's been neglected lately and is next on the list for redecorating.  The giant wingback chair, while nice for floor displays and photoshoots, is too big and unwieldily for a shelf display.  It is, however, perfect for the cats.  Her desk has a few scattered school supplies (crayons, pencils, textbooks), but there's no fancy display shelf that all the other rooms have.  That will have to be remedied.

Samantha's Creativity Corner: Full of Curios and Droids
A good part of the space in Sam's room has been taken up by the resident droid and a curio cabinet of odds and ends.  There's also a desk with materials for writing stories or letters or what have you.

The curio cabinet is really rather full of things.  All sorts of things.  There's the Egyptian hand mirror, the Japanese fan, the antique Japanese fan, the music box, kokeshi dolls, a stereoscope, assorted pewter miniatures, assorted books, tarot cards, a few lanterns, an incense burner, etc etc etc.  Just the sort of random curio cabinet you need for 'I need something to write a story about.'

Cauthrien and Nora's Library:  Quiet Elegance
This is the only shared room, but Nora and Cauth are besties who don't mind the cramped space.  This room will always be the library, even if another room (*cough* Shepard's *cough*) has more books.  The majority of the fiction collection (except the Tolkien) are in this room, along with the fancy glass lamp and vase.  And the old clunky phone.  The big green vase will have flowers in it someday.

The bookshelf is so out of space.  There's the collection of Japanese fairy tales, a few Nancy Drew books, the Anne of Green Gables series, a handful of Little Golden Books, some Wizard of Oz books, assorted novels (A Little Princess, Little Women, etc).  The table (formerly a bistro table) also has a card game and a few sci-fi magazines in addition to the aforementioned lamp and phone.

Kana's Parlor:  Pretending to be an Antique Shop
Kana's room is another room with a real theme.  If it were up to her, it would look like a girl's bedroom out of an anime.  Instead, it's a hodgepodge of styles and items, with a few glass bottles and a ship-in-a-bottle on the mantle.  The little gardening-shelf-turned-sideboard has two different tea sets and the fancy candles.  On the cabinet is her laptop and her manga collection.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

An Easter Ice Cream Party (Free Retro Ice Cream Printables)

Happy Easter!

Kana here.  It's really rare that all of us get together for a party like this, but we said we'd have an ice cream party last week, and so we did.  It's a little cold, but when has that stopped us before?

We have some other snacks, but really, we're just showing off all the ice cream that we got recently.

It helped that the human finally made us an ice cream freezer for all that ice cream we bought.  We didn't want to keep it out because it always looked like it was going to melt, and as nice as the ice cream truck is, it didn't have a freezer.   What an oversight, huh?

The freezer is made entirely of foam core, with a sliding clear doors on top so you can see what ice cream is inside.  All the ice cream not in holders are in retro wrappers (download here).  The freezer is decorated with some vintage signs.  There's more storage under the top shelf through a door in the back.

Lily:  Here's your milkshake.
In other news, Lily is not allowed to serve ice cream anymore...

Kana:  What are those bottles and
what did you put in here?
Lily:  Nothing...
(The grey one is Veritaserum...)
For the record, the ice cream truck is not a potions lab and NOR SHOULD IT BE.
(Knowing Lily and our human, that truck is going to become a mobile laboratory...)

Shepard:  So, pre-packaged commercial
ice cream it is!
To the ice cream freezer!

Now, more about the new freezer in excruciating detail:  it's 8.5" tall, 9" wide, and 5" deep.  The actual storage part is only 7.75" tall, and is divided into two sections.

The top section has a clear plastic front and sliding doors on top.  It's 3.5" tall, which makes it just tall enough for the popsicle holders that come with the OG ice cream truck.  The doors slide in both directions so you can get all the ice cream in and out.

For more storage, the second section is accessible through the pair of plastic doors in the back.  It opens up to a 2.5" deep shelf for the shorter things (like the sundaes).  The two shelves in the back are approximately 2" tall each, and the front portion is a full 4" tall for the milkshake glasses.

And inside, we have all the ice cream still in its packaging (and thus no risk of potion roulette.  Thanks Lily...).  These are all 1950s-1960s vintage wrappers, resized to fit the ice cream that comes with OG ice cream truck.  OK, the cyclone logo is probably more recent.

You can print these on normal paper (and for the drumstick, you want normal printer paper), but to get the right texture for the bags, you can print them on tissue paper.  The human used the tissue paper that came inside the AG boxes from the last batch of toys.

Get a piece of tissue paper roughly 10"x7.5" (a little smaller is ok), and tape it to a piece of printer paper or cardstock.  You'll want to tape it down around all the sides or it will cause a paper jam.  (Also, a laser jet printer will melt scotch tape.  The human learned that one the hard way.)  Then load the paper in as you normally would, and the printer should print on the tissue paper.  The human hasn't tested with an inkjet printer, so it might not work as well.  Ink absorbency with different papers isn't an issue with laser jet printers.

Ice cream sandwiches and cyclones

All sorts of popsicles!

Twin pops!