Blogs, SWAP logs and Anatolian shepherd dogs….

Hello everyone,

A much belated post but better late than never. I have been busy trying to get as much sewing as possible and opted to use my blogging time towards sewing. This was an attempt to complete my SWAP2017 wardrobe before the April 30th deadline. Unfortunately I have missed this deadline by 4 garments (I have 2 cut out and 2 that need hemming and buttons). I am rather annoyed with myself given that I had six months to finish this but allow me to justify……..

Blog space – you my have noticed my penchant for having plenty of pictures per garment I make – I love pictures – I am such a visual person and when I look back on my younger self I want to have PLENTY of reminders of what I liked wearing and how I wore it etc. Consequentially I have run out of media storage space. blogs come with a free 3GB of space of which I used up 99.8%. I cant add pictures at the moment and I find it ever so hard to do a post without any pictures. So I have been holding off – weighing my options. I could pay for more storage here on this platform or I could move to and self host which sounds very attractive to me. I love learning new things and to me moving represents a learning opportunity. The problem with moving is that I have a huge amount of pictures (and from what I read pictures tend to be the most problematic when moving platforms) hence my dilemma. I will think properly about it when I get back from the US in June – I have quite a lot on at the moment and whatever decision I make requires me to have time to handle it which I don’t have at the moment.

My SWAP plans were going swimmingly with more than 50% of my garments done before April came around. I did find it very (very) challenging to sew things so far in advance especially when I couldn’t start wearing them straight away. My capsule is essentially a summer one and I was still in the groove of sewing cosy knits. But I did do well with a lot of discipline. With the kids off for 2 weeks in April and my OH away with 2 of my offspring for a ski trip – I was guaranteed a large chunk of time to sew away to my heart’s content. At my sewing speed I could have finished the remaining 4 garments in that time.

Best laid plans of mice and men…

We had unexpected house guests – 3 sets over the month of April. Family and friends who just happened to have realised they were coming our way and would be staying with us for a few days. All good – my kids love it when we have sleepovers. Being a hostess and sewing don’t go hand in hand so I fell behind my schedule. One of the guests, however, brought a dog. An Anatolian shepherd dog to be exact. Readers – it is a huge dog – so big my 7-year-old could sit on it without his legs touching the ground. Now, one of the highlights of this particular breed of dog is that has a thick double coat which sheds profusely, especially in the spring. And we happened to be in spring. It was shedding – a lot. I and 4 of my kids are allergic to dog fur (also asthmatic ), when we visit family members with dogs we start taking antihistamines about 3 days prior in order to be around dog fur without swollen eyes, blocked sinuses and wheeziness. My allergy is so bad I start using my steroid pump 2 weeks before a visit to reduce the rate and intensity of my asthma attacks when I am around dogs for an extended period of time.  Alas I only found out 4 hours before arrival that a dogsitter could not be found so we had an extra houseguest. Having never actually lived with a dog (apart from the various overnights in dog owner homes) I actually had no idea how much a dog sheds fur when its malting. Taking antihistamines and trying to set up a dog only area did little to contain the spread of dog fur to the rest of the house. It got everywhere – after a while I just sort of gave up and told myself that I will have to clean afterwards. After 2 nights and 2 days (it also happened to rain most of the 2 days so the dog was housebound) there was a lot of fur. The clean up started in earnest with a hope that in 24 hours I will have eradicated all traces of dig fur from the house and return to the previous pet free home state. Boy was I wrong – not having a pet means I didn’t have the equipment (or knowhow) like rubber attachments which apparently make it easier to remove fur from settees and curtains. Furiously going over and over with my vacuum cleaner wasn’t lifting all the fur I could see embedded in the carpets. 1 day turned into 2, 2 days into 3 days and so forth. Still 2 weeks later I find dog fur when I turn a corner several times a day. The plus side is that I actually ended up doing a very thorough spring clean of the house which took up most of the rest of time that I would have been sewing. In truth, I was mad about how much time it was taking to do but after some reflection – it wouldn’t have been so bad had I actually sewn everything up in the 5 months prior to the deadline.

I have bought a rubber brush which I am using to slowly get the hidden dog fur. I have accepted that there will be some fur for the next unknown  time period. Moving on from my obsession to remove all dog fur from the house (I generally , for the most part, love our large home but I have cursed its size more than I can count in the last 3 weeks :-)). Naturally when I spring cleaned the house I couldn’t stand my cave as it was – so I started on it and got sidetracked rearranging things, sorting the stash – getting rid of some of the stash etc. It’s now been spring cleaned and is a lovely room to retreat to, more so than before. I will do another tour blog piece to share the changes (and indeed the reduced stash).

If you have read this far I thank you –  if you haven, thank you none the less.

Until next time,



34 thoughts on “Blogs, SWAP logs and Anatolian shepherd dogs….

      1. I have come to embrace it – sometimes literally.
        We have three of the beasts, as well as cats but, luckily, none of us suffer from allergies. My workroom and our bedroom are on the top floor and the animals aren’t allowed up there so that’s a relatively ‘fur-free’ zone. Most of my friends and relatives either have pets themselves or are animal lovers so they are not phased by those tumbleweed moments when a cloud of dog hair that has hidden under a sofa and formed itself into a floating ball, drifts past on a faint breeze from an open window or door.
        In my next life I will be pet free, have cream carpets, white leather sofas and wear beige crochet slippers around the house but, in this one, I can’t imagine my home without at least one animal in it so I put up with it.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I abandoned the SWAP too, mainly just lack of interest, the ‘tried and tested’ route is just too dull! Meanwhile, my picture storage on WordPress is also about as full, so I switched earlier this year to hosting my pics on IMGUR [free, and folders are for me only, not public so I can use them as I wish]. Then I just post links in my blog. Had you noticed any difference? Probably not!
    Meanwhile, I’m avoiding the self-hosting thing, as I hear a lot of horror stories about security issues, and spam. Anyway, why pay?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. We have a dog, but she is a ‘hypoallergenic’ dog meaning she doesn’t shed much. It’s true, my Bichon is a little on the ‘fluffy’ side – more so right now cause she needs a hair cut – but, I don’t come across much dog hair at all. Shedded fur is why I won’t have cats ever again – well one reason anyway. Hope you get the rest of it up sooner than later. As for the self-hosting, I had thought of that a time or two, but things are so much easier this way. Like the previous comment, you could get an image account somewhere, Flickr comes to mind, and then insert the links on your posts. You will have your beautiful pics show up just as always and won’t have to move anywhere. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. My goodness, Hila! You need some expertise over your place! Do some searches online for specialist cleaners – like those that come in after a fire – but you need one that’s for allergy/asthma. Maybe your local medic/hospital can give recommendations. Then you can rest easily. Which you’ll need because… did you think that slipped past us… ?!

    You’re crossing the pond in June?! Deets, lady, please! Where will you be, in case someone might arrange a meet-up?

    PHOTO STORAGE: Will do a post for Mac users, as I’ve been blogging for yonks, and have 8% of my space used. EIGHT!

    Hope all is sorted soonest! xxx

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks for this. I’m a Mac User too and use iPhoto. I probably haven’t been that attentive to photo size as I could be (just using the “Medium / Large” settings, rather than “Full Size” in the File Export) , but even so I have used only 13%. I do like the idea of storing my photos somewhere else other than in WordPress though – it would kind of future proof my site.

        Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank for that – I hadnt thought to ask for specialist help. Unfortunately our itinerary is so tight that even though we will be in NY and NJ, I cant even make it to the garment district for a spot of fabric therapy. We are coming over for a family reunion so all the planning is out of my hands.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This post made me chuckle – sorry. Anyway I don’t understand about the WordPress storage thing: I have been blogging for almost 5 years and have used about 50% of my storage space. Are you using the space to store pictures that you’re not actually using for blog posts?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I use all the pictures uploaded on the media library. I think using the DSLR pictures really ate up my storage. They are great quality but evidently take up a lot of space. x


  5. I have a very furry cat who sheds a lot so I feel your pain. Interesting dilemma about your WordPress storage. I have plenty of space left for photos, but I don’t think I’ve been blogging as long as you have. I’ll likely run into the same dilemma at some point. Good luck sorting that out! We love your photos, so I hope you find a good solution soon 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m certain that I’m not the only one to miss your posts and all their lovely photos!

    I’ll never understand people traveling with pets.

    I hope that you have a great time in the US! What are your plans, and will any of us be lucky enough to meet up? (I’m obviously piggybacking on the previous post! )

    My life on a mountain top isn’t typical of US life, but I’ll be interested in your impression of life in the colonies!

    Can’t wait to see what you make when you get back to it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Lodi, We are there for 8 days. We leave just before end of May and return in June. We will be in New York then New Jersey. I have thought of trying to arrange a meet up but its unlikely to happen – the itinerary isnt leaving me much room unfortunately. I wont even make it to the garment district in NY :-(((


  7. Oh dog hair! We have dogs that aren’t supposed to shed…and they still do, but our is little enough to just be swept up and lint rolled. I don’t think I would be able to cope with any more!
    I embed all my photos from my Flickr account – it’s super easy and you can edit/ change picture size on there too. Hope you work something out as we all love to see your photos 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I feel for you having to deal with dog hair. I realised I’m allergic to cat hair when our old outdoor cat died, and a year later we were given a rescue kitten which we kept indoors to strengthen him. After a two month ‘cold’ …. it dawned on me that it might be an allergy, and sure enough it cleared up when our cat moved outdoors!
    Re: blog pics…i use a phone app which resizes my photos to a web suitable size – which means they use much less storage space and also that they load faster for readers.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m an android user too – Samsung.The app is free from the play store – it’s called called Photo Resizer by xllusion. Very simple to use, just select a batch of pics from gallery, and share them to the app, choose the size you want and they save in a resize folder, with the originals left as they are. Hope that helps 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Wow. I don’t mean to disparage your guest, but WTF? Bringing a dog into the home of people with allergies and asthma is pretty much the ultimate in rudeness. Especially a dog of that size. Before you think I don’t like animals, I currently have dogs (4) and take in friends dogs when they go on vacation. OK, mini rant over. Hope you are dog hair free soon and hope you all feel better soon.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Elle. I also love dogs – I just cant live with them in a house. I did think about it and to a certain extent I am to blame since in the past I have downplayed the extent of my allergies. They are quite old and never wanted them to feel burdened by us visiting them – his late wife knew though because women tend to pick up on these things and blessher – she would go out of her way to try and have a dog free space for me and the kids. She passed away 16 months ago and I think he is quite clueless about the behind the scenes stuff. I did go out of my way to make him and the dog as comfortable possible. AT least in future I will be able to firmly insist on kennels without feeling bad because I just cant do this again. I am getting specialists in with the proper equipment – the carpets keep yielding hair- :-__-


  10. I remember that the Monthly Stitch had rules about uploading photos, regarding their size, etc., which I read about when I first started blogging, so I have been very careful about photo size ever since my first post. I did change to the next level of WordPress though for a fee. It gives you more space, but more important for me is the guarantee of no silly WordPress ads.


  11. I’ve been told that it isn’t the hair actually that makes you allergic, but rather more skin secretions of the animals. It’s so for cats. It’s small particles that get i to your nose and lungs, not hair. I’m not sure if that can help. Being allergic myself to dust, I have noticed that it’s as worse when it’s lifted up in the air by swirling and dusting….in short things should get better with time and the particles sinking deep into furnitures.

    Liked by 1 person

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