Thursday, March 29, 2012

Live Like The Butterfly


Another gorgeous spring design by Kathy Davis.  Nobody does cheerful and inspiring like her!

Friday, March 23, 2012

3/22/12--Round Reed Seagrass Basket


Well, here is last night's creation; a Round Reed Seagrass Basket!  This one really tried my patience.  The sides are built with chase weaving, which requires you to lay a new weaver right beside the old one when you need to splice in a new piece.  I had loose ends everywhere!  Plus, the seagrass can be untwisted at each end and twisted back together to form a new piece; well, those were sticking out all ugly too.  Lastly, even though I had it clothespinned in place, the handle kept popping out.  AAARGH!  But it finally all came together, and I must admit that the texture of this piece is my favorite part of the basket.

The best part of last evening, though, was the realization of what a small world this really is.  My friend and high school classmate Gail was there, as was Julie, who graduated from another high school the same year as I and was in 4-H with me.  Bev, Joyce and Heather, who I have written about previously in this blog, were also there.  Nancy, who I had not seen since before the holidays, was also in class last night.  And I met two new gals who I really took to; Missy and Megan, who are working on their graduate degrees at Purdue.  As all of us introduced ourselves during class, it was amazing to realize the connections we all had in one way or another that we had just discovered.  Sisterhood is a wonderful thing!

Getting back into the basketmaking groove is one of the best decisions I have made for myself in a while.  Good friends, good work.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

My Daisy Wreath (Idea via Pinterest)


Here is a snapshot of the wreath that currently graces my front door.  I got the original idea from Pinterest and adapted it to the materials I was able to find at my local Jo-Ann Fabrics store.

The materials list for this wreath includes:
  • Lion brand "Fun Fur" yarn (I only needed one skein)
  • 12" green foam wreath form
  • One yard of daisy trim (the Pinterest original was pink centers, but all I found was yellow centers
  • Wide ribbon (I used floral ribbon, but in retrospect, I would spend a little more and get a more satin craft ribbon)
Take the yarn and wrap it tightly around the wreath.  This is the part that takes the longest.  I was able to secure both the beginning and ending yarn by tucking it under the wrapped parts; no glue needed for that part.  The Fun Fur yarn creates the grassy look all by itself; you just need to "foof" it up a bit as you go.

Now, take the yard of daisy trim and cut the flowers into separate single flowers.  Take glue (I used Aleene's Tacky Glue) and put a small dot on the back of each flower, then glue it wherever you want on the wreath.

Lastly, cut a length of the ribbon (I cut a 2 yard length; better too much than too little!) and tie a loop with bow to hang.  I found a clear acrylic wreath hanger at Old Time Pottery for $.79 and bought it; it shows off the bow much better.

I made this wreath during the Purdue-St. Mary's men's basketball game on Friday 3/16.  I had it finished and on the door by halftime.  That's how quick it goes together!

If you try it, enjoy it!  This is one of those projects that looks great when it is finished and you didn't have to spend a lot of time and effort and money making it look that way.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Getting That Agricultural Urge

This week+ of beautiful, warm, June-like weather we have been having in Indiana has stirred up those urges inside of me to get out and get my hands into the dirt and plant my garden.

Due to the high prices of just about everything (I just about keeled over the last time I went to the grocery store), I have decided that, like it or not, I need to pay more attention to my garden this year.  I have also developed an interest in raised bed gardening, where you can sit on the side and harvest or weed or whatever and you can reach across the garden pretty much with one strike of your hoe.

Therefore, I am transforming my garden patch in my backyard from an 8' x8' square to a 16' x 4' raised bed rectangle.  Nothing fancy or too expensive; I am using landscape timbers (some cut to fit) and rebar scraps to pound into them and hold them in place.  My Dad is coming to help (supervise; I don't think he knows that yet, but shhhhhh) so it should be a fairly quick process.  I will have to sow some grass seed along one 16' side of the raised bed to regrow the grass, but that should also take no time at all.

I have even gotten the ex involved in this project; he has promised me some DRY pig manure from the farm (if you want sure money, let's start betting right now on the amount of dryness in the manure I get).  If possible, I might also get the use of a pickup truck and a wheelbarrow to get some of the free mulch from the city pile down by the riverfront.

Please pray that the nice weather holds out long enough for me to get this project done!  I would love to get some potatoes planted as soon as I can.

Monday, March 19, 2012

One Week Into 50...

"What will this day be like?
I wonder
What will my future be?
I wonder
It could be so exciting
To be out in the world
To be free
My heart should be wildly rejoicing
Oh whats the matter with me?"


"I Have Confidence", music and lyrics by Richard Rodgers, from "The Sound of Music" (1965) 

Another Classy Goodbye...

Photo credit:  Brent Drinkut, The Lafayette Journal and Courier

This is the kind of kid you would want to have for your son.  Goodbye, Robbie, and thanks for all that you gave us.  Your future awaits, and it will be wonderful.

Monday, March 12, 2012

I Was Just Born 50 Years Ago...

Yes, I had the decency to arrive into the world at 1:40 something in the afternoon on March 12, 1962.  I am now officially 50 years old!  Doesn't feel much different than 49, to tell you the truth.  And I wasn't expecting it to.

What I am expecting is to continue to live, love and grow every day I have left.  To make sure others know that they mean the world to me.  To be more understanding and patient.  To find happiness and joy in the smallest and most unexpected places.  To learn something new every single day.

I also know that I have some of the most wonderful people in the world as my family and friends.  I am so thankful for the well wishes, cards, e-cards, phone messages, gifts, and Facebook posts.  You all are my best presents and I'm so glad you chose to celebrate my day with me!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

A Classy Goodbye

Photo credit:  Charlie Nye, The Indianapolis Star

So says a headline in the 3/8/12 edition of The Indianapolis Star.  You will be missed for that grace, class and professionalism.  Thanks, Peyton Manning, for all you gave us over the years.

Terrible Days, But Hope Is There...

Photo credit:  Kylene Lloyd, The Louisville Courier-Journal

Please keep the people of Southern Indiana and Kentucky in your minds and hearts as they try to put all the pieces of their lives together again after the devastating tornadoes of 3/2/12.  They need our help and our prayers.


Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Mindfulness

I've been doing some reading and brushing up on anxiety and panic, which, unfortunately, I have had to cope with for far too long a time in my life.  As a matter of fact--and this is sad--I almost don't remember the days before anxiety/panic became such a big part of my life.  I don't want to say normal, because what exactly IS normal?  But it has been a long time.

An interesting concept that is woven throughout my recent reading is mindfulness. Mindfulness is not thinking of the future at this point in time, telling the past you will take care of it in a bit, and just being fully and completely aware of NOW.

It is a kind of meditation to help you block everything out, to put yesterday in a box and put tomorrow on a shelf, and be "in" today. But it has proven to be helpful to me. If I just slow it down and concentrate on the here and now, I find I manage much better.

Being mindful is not a "sexy" 21st century concept; you definitely can't multitask and be mindful at the same time. Maybe as more of us start suffering from our stressed out, overloaded lifestyles, mindfulness will become more mainstream--for all of us.  Let's hope so, for all our sakes.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Trying To Get That Feeling Again

Here it is, one week till I join the 50 year old club. I was looking forward to it; now, I'm not so sure.

My happiness train derailed almost one month ago. No matter how much I immerse myself in work, no matter how many times I repeat to myself "I deserve better"--it's just not there.

I need to cowboy up and get back to me--and hope that a little peace of mind finds me in the next few days.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

More Pinterest Ramblings

As most of you who read my writings know, I am addicted to the social media website Pinterest.  It's a sort of online bulletin board to which  you can "pin" and repin ideas, photos, thoughts, etc. you find while surfing the web or exercising your creativity.

Thinking about this this morning, I think the thing that still floors me the most about Pinterest (besides how totally cool it is) is the fact that I have attracted so many followers of either some of my boards or all of my boards.  I think the number is up around 40 this morning, and I only joined right around October or November of 2011.  It's quite an honor and I love seeing those names pop up on my follower list.

In a vengeful way (which is so totally NOT me), I am enjoying the fact that there are so many people out there that like the same things I do and think that my boards are cool enough to check out for their own ideas.  My ex-husband used to ridicule me when I would dream out loud about opening a counted cross stitch shop in town.  "You couldn't do it.  Not everybody likes the same stuff you do."  I can still hear those words like it was just yesterday he said them.

Hate to tell you, dear, but there seem to be a lot of people--all over the freaking WORLD--that like the same stuff that I do, that think I have interesting taste.

Thanks, Pinterest, for being part of my world and being part of my own little cheering section!