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“Mura”

21 Mar

Over the past 5 years I posted about sewing for Days for Girls International 28 times.  What’s new?  Last year I had the opportunity to change my shipments/deliveries to a new local team led by a long time friend.  My work flow shifted as best described in Wikipedia  as:

Lean manufacturing or lean production, often simply “lean“, is a systematic method for waste minimization (“Muda“) within a manufacturing system without sacrificing productivity, which can cause problems. Lean also takes into account waste created through overburden (“Muri“) and waste created through unevenness in work loads (Mura).

There is a second approach to lean manufacturing, which is promoted by Toyota, called The Toyota Way, in which the focus is upon improving the “flow” or smoothness of work, thereby steadily eliminating mura (“unevenness”) through the system and not upon ‘waste reduction’ per se. Techniques to improve flow include production leveling, “pull” production (by means of kanban) and the Heijunka box.

My emphasis has been on “improving workflow” in my attic sewing room.

My usual shipments to Iowa supported 40 kits with 10 items for each kit (Total=400).

With local delivery, I shifted to supporting 10 kits at a time (10 items for each kit/Total=100).

Although I still buy flannel 32 yards at time, 8 different colors/patterns 4 yards each…(this facilitates washing/drying impacting shrinkage)…which I cut into one yard lengths, which makes 10 flannel pads, which is very manageable and are placed in freezer gallon ziplock bags, which makes for easy counting and the ziplock bags are then provided in the finished DfGI kits.

I sew 80 flannel pads with 8 different colors/patterns combined into 10 ziplock bags.  Then I make 20 liners with PUL, pockets and wings in 2 different color/pattern combinations (10 each in ziplock bags), which are delivered LOCALLY to be completed as 10 Days for Girls International Kits.

https://www.daysforgirls.org

Local chapters pack sewn pads and liners with panties, wash cloth, soap, instructions in a sewn drawstring bag with the DfGI logo for delivery around the world.  It is not just about sewing!  Local chapters are encouraged to make deliveries.  Our chapter delivered 50 DfGI kits to Haiti December 2018!

 

From Houzz: 10 ways to organize your books

14 Feb

 

Elfcroft survey:  What I found….

  1. Classics/Contemporary           NO
  2. Read/Unread                             Only digital books
  3. Genre or Niche

    Miscellaneous

  4. Series or Edition

    My first series

  5. A to Z or Z to A                         NO
  6. By Size

    Coffee Table books:  bottom shelf

  7. By Topic

    One of many:  I Ching research

  8. Hard Cover/Paperback           NO
  9. Outward Facing                         NO
  10. Mood or Setting

    Hour for hour, most of my reading of digital books is in-flight

    Wow!  Choosing just one of the 10 suggestions made by Laura Gaskill would be TOO limiting.  Thank you Laura!

    Check out using library style carts (post dated Dec 3, 2018 “Coincidence? Mini Libraries”)

Joy=February Garden Planning

8 Feb

149th Year:  R. H. Shumway Seedsman

https://www.rhshumway.com

What may be better than Valentines Day?  Receiving the BIG, beautiful RHShumway seed catalog in February when the outside temperature is 20 degrees F.

I normally buy local herb/tomato/vegetable nursery plants in May.  This year, as well as plants I am ordering seed.  Three categories of plants have my attention.

  1. Gourds and Luffa Sponge:  future crafty bird houses, dippers and sponges
  2. Persimmon root-stock:  Regional fruit
  3. Annual flowers:  Zinnias, Snapdragon, Bells of Ireland, Cockscomb

Expect future posts on my garden expansion project.

 

From Houzz: Inspiring spaces for crafting

31 Jan

 

Outstanding examples of lovely work spaces!

I especially like the weaving room.  It is so important to have a way to showcase projects.

At home with Elfcroft, I sew solo.  My sewing room also accomodates knitting, needlepoint and legacy projects that may not make the finish line…

Globe Trotting

16 Jan

Since 2014, I have made a list of countries travelled to by friends and family.  In five years the list is:

Thailand, Ecuador, Peru, Sweden

Germany, Australia, Canada

China, Japan, Mexico

Scotland, Iceland, South Africa, Zimbabwe

Spain, England, France, Holland, Italy

Switzerland, Israel, Argentina

Jamaica, Haiti

My interest in world travel started early.  My grandmother brought dolls in native dress home as gifts for my sisters and me.  (Perhaps that is another post.)

From an early Elfcroft post (and a suggestion for my globe trotting friends):

What happens when you rummage through Grandmother’s end table?  The risk is discovery of something that needs to be dealt with, such as hundreds of postcards sent and received over three decades (1964-1994) of world travels with teacher groups.  The first sort was to separate sent from received.  Then, thanks to Mom saving itineraries, the post cards are arranged by trip, in chronological order.  I used three binders, two for Mam-ma’s travels and one for friends and family.

Mam-ma’s world travel

I chose binder pages so the cards could be viewed from both sides without removing from the sleeve.  The text, date and postage from country of origin are easily observed.  Post cards from Iceland are featured in the photo below.

Why use a camera? Buy post cards.

Having reference maps was essential to understanding the many regions Mam-ma travelled.  Originally, I was going to remove the pages from atlases purchased at Half Price Books, however many times I wanted to use both sides of the pages in different section of the binder.  Solution:  I made color copies from the atlases.

Maps provide context

Itineraries as table of contents

Mom saved all Mam-ma’s itineraries typed in the format shown above.  This was very helpful with sorting.  World travel of our grandmother’s life time ready to share with inquiring minds.

Coincidence? Mini Libraries

3 Dec

I saw this tweet the same day I finished stocking a library cart for the barn we inherited from my father-in-law.

I found a stainless steel 3 shelf cart with rails in the barn.  We kept his books on WW2, hunting deer, bees, tree and bird identification, playing craps, a couple of 1995 issues of PB mag (PB does not stand for peanut butter :), investment and music books from the 1920s.  The chair (not much on looks) is by a window.   Perfect!

Mini Rolling Library, In Memory of Grandpa

….So like the  little library in the cemetery honoring the deceased, our little library cart holds content dear to its former owner.

From Houzz: Housework as Meditation? Really?

15 Aug

 

I consider sewing and knitting activities for meditation.  Housework as meditation would be a new attitude for me.  It’s worth a try 😉

 

Days for Girls International:  Registered Super Solo Sewist

2 Jul

2018 is Elfcroft’s fifth year volunteering as a Solo Sewist.  This month’s shipment approaches the 4000 level for number of items sewn to support 380 kits.  Liners as well as flannel pads are top-stitched for durability.  I strive to maximize color and pattern in each of my shipments.  These items (total 320 pads and 80 liners) have shipped to a DfGI chapter in Iowa to complete assembly of 40 kits arriving today.

The 2017 DfGI Annual Report is available:

https://www.daysforgirls.org

Dirty job: composting

27 Jun
Yard compost bin

Yard

Kitchen compost bin

Kitchen

 

Compost bins

 

 

 

 

 

Composting is both a dirty job and “Black gold” to enrich vegetable garden….this season’s yield…200 pounds!

For eighteen years, I have used a three step process to mitigate the slime and smell of kitchen waste.  This year I added a fourth step.

  1. Compost kitchen and garden waste (very slimy and smelly)
  2. Compost yard waste (primarily trimmings of perennial flowers).
  3. Add kitchen compost to yard waste = black gold
  4. Top off with ashes from fire pit for enrichment

All gardening starts with dirt.  Yes, it is less expensive and messy to buy compost by the bag at garden centers.  Homemade is better.

More from Houzz: Unique Home Libraries

11 Jun

In this era of digital books this article makes you want to reach out, take a book off the shelf and turn pages!