Wednesday, March 19, 2008

scrappy fun

This is a quilt I pieced a few weeks ago - the pattern is "Pink Bliss" by Amy Bulter - it was in the Better Homes and Gardens "Quilt Pink" magazine. It was a lot of fun to piece. (Just a note, however, if you have the magazine and are thinking about making one of your own - there are a lot of measurement errors in the diagram - so you have to be careful). I liked making it so much, that I think I want to make it bigger - adding more squares - I just love how all the patterns and colors play off each other!

Friday, February 29, 2008


Guess I need to work on my photography skills - but going to show this picture none-the-less - trying to get myself back to this blogging thing as I think it is important for my own growth- even if no one else discovers it. So here is a painting (and I table cloth) I recently made.

I have mentioned before that I have been taking painting classes and said I may get up the courage to share my paintings. So here is one - that I actually like :-). I did this at home - but it was based on a lesson we did in class. I was inspired by the actual daffodils that I had bought - I LOVE daffodils (as you can see by the Herend Pottery in the background). I had an urge to paint them that would not go away - so I got out my paints and went for it. I love that I can see how much I've grown in my painting since taking the class. It's hard to tell - but I have used layers of paint and texture and collage - things I never even knew about before. I've used different colors and color combinations from what I used to do. So I have a long way to go - but am pleased with this journey marker.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Getting outside of myself

I keep trying to put myself in situations were I have to stretch and grow a little. Last night was one of those times.

One of my passions is nutrition. I have been grinding my own wheat and making bread and other goodies for about 5 years now. (Will blog more about that at a later date).

Last night we had a women's event where we got together for soup and homemade (by me) bread and then I gave a little talk and demonstration.

Even though it was a relatively small group of women and all women that I know well and love (and know they love me), I was a little nervous. But once I got into it, I started having fun. Everyone seemed to learn and get excited. What a wonderful feeling.

Teaching teenagers is old hat - but adults - that is a newer experience - one that I am finding that I love. (and I'm not bad at it).

I'm learning again to get outside of myself, relax, and just go for it (when doing things I'm afraid of).

I actually took some pictures of projects over the weekend - but haven't had time to get them on my computer - so I promise to add more pictures to this blog soon. But want to try to just keep blogging - to try to figure this whole thing out.

Monday, February 4, 2008

service, selfishness, balance..

When I got home Friday night around 9:00 after a long day - mostly work related - there was a message from a friend at church asking if I could cover for him watching some of the kids after church for a couple hours. I so want to be a servant, a person who gladly and graciously says "of course"... and of course, I did say I would be able to help - but I wasn't as cheerful as I wanted to be. It wasn't that I didn't want to help, or even that I wasn't glad to help, it was just that my schedule was getting very filled up and I had set aside Sunday afternoon to crash - rest, relax, take a nap, sew...

Then the next morning the phone rang - the woman in charge of our women's ministry committe (and I am on said committee), called to see if we could meet on Thursday evening - sigh... my only other block of free time, gone. Again, I said I could, but wasn't overly cheerful about it... we did need to meet - we have a retreat coming up and I committed to be on the planning committee...

For me though it's about the element of surprise - I don't like to be surprised in my shedule - I like to have it all known ahead of time - so I can plan accordingly, store up energy to last through the busy times, try to keep some balance...

However, life is not always in a neat package. And while I certainly need to be wise, I do need to allow for some surprises and learn to graciously accept the surprises - trusting my schedule to God, trusting that He will provide the health and energy, trusting that He will provide some down time. I do probably keep too tight of control over my time.

I started this post last Monday and have been thinking about this issue all week. Haven't got it all figured out yet, but being open to the changes and surprises and the needs of others has to be part of this...

Friday, February 1, 2008

Lost Community

One of my goals for this year is to be more intentional about being in community. As a single gal it's easy to retreat into myself and start to get a little isolated. I have many dear friends, but I don't always take the time to spend time with them like I should. I want to invite people over for dinner more, do more fun things together... just basically let more people into my life.

So in that vain, I invited myself over to my (married) friends' house last night for dinner and to watch the season premier of LOST - as the season premier of LOST should not be watched alone. Another (single) friend called while I was hanging out over there last night and of course we invited her to come over as well. "You need to be in community," I said. "You don't want to watch alone. When something happens and you say 'oh my goodness', you want someone to say 'I KNOW!'" The pull of the couch in her own warm house was strong though - but she started thinking... "Yes, and if I want to ask - what did he just say - someone can answer." "Exactly," I said..."Plus, here they have Tivo - so if you miss something - we can just rewind." "AHH Tivo" she exclaimed - "I'll be over soon." So appartantly Tivo, not community was the big draw :-) We did have a great time - very thankful for good friends and for time to be together.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

A Chance Encounter

Yesterday I made an off-hand comment to a colleague of mine about having to leave work on time to go to my painting class. She shared that she painted as well and suddenly a casual friendship went a step deeper. There is something so nice about finding out that you share similar interests with another person. She showed me pictures of some of her paintings and I went to class even more inspired.

One of my goals last year was to take an art class. I have thought about doing so for years, but always chickened out. Finally, last summer, my parents gave me some money towards a class and I picked one out of a the course catalogue and signed up. It was a three day college workshop. I loved it. I loved how friendly and generous the other students were. I loved the teacher. From there I got up the courage to sign-up for a 9 -week acrylic painting class with the same teacher. I was so nervous. Would I suddenly discover that I had no talent whatsoever and that I should just give up? The first class was awkward, but I stuck it out. Again, everyone was so encouraging. I was beginning to doubt myself but kept going and decided to just have fun. I am taking the class again - as a "second quarter" student -so it is less scary and I can be the one to encourage the "first quarter" students. I'm not brilliant, but I continue to have fun and continue to learn and grow and that's what it's really all about.

And one of these days I may get up the courage to post some pictures of my paintings... :-)

How Cool

Tentatively checked my blog this morning to see if by chance anyone had left a comment. And someone did - how exciting - someone whose blog I have been reading for a while and had finally made a comment on. So thanks CAMMYK from Freckled Farm (and fellow magazine-aholic) for being the first - that is too exciting!!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Today is the Day

No more procrastination. No more trying to figure it all out in my head first. Today I am posting my first post on my first ever blog. What can I show you? - well - let me start with a quilt. A couple of years ago - Country Living Magazine (March 2005, I believe) did a spread on Jennifer Paganelli and her new line of fabric - Sis Boom. I fell head over heals in love!!! When visiting my parents in Florida I found the fabric at a nearby quilt shop and bought some. When I got home, I asked my mother to buy some more :-). She did. She sent it to me for my birthday - the package apparently was stolen off my back door. :-(. I ordered more online. It did not get stolen. I finally found a quilt pattern I liked. I got up my courage and started making the quilt. My first quilt in years. My first sewing project in years. I cut it out. I discovered an error in the pattern and had to rework everything. I got the front pieced together - JOY! Sis Boom fabric went on sale. I ordered 11 yards for the back and to make a shower curtain. It also got stolen from my front yard. I was able to order some more. I got it put together. Found someone to quilt it for me. I put the binding on and finished it. Much joy!!! I can't tell you how good it felt, in spite of the frustrations, to accomplish this. And my addiction to quilting and sewing kicked back in. This was about a year ago that I finished the quilt. In the process I have discovered other wonderful fabric designers. I have discoverd the creative blog world. I have discovered wonderful shops and internet sites to buy fabric, patterns and other creative things. I recently made my first etsy purchase from one of my favority bloggers - Brin at . I am starting to get brave and leave comments on some of my favorite blogs. And finally, I have now started my own blog. Where this will lead? I have no idea. Will anyone read it? I have no idea. But I have the compulsion to start. To try. I want to find my own voice in this wonderful creative world. So here I go...