Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Not exactly fiber art...but...sparkle time!


Here is my new sweater...which I think is almost fiber art!! :) but technically not. Made in a factory...and mass produced...etc...however, I love the textures and color.  This is part of  my New Years Eve outfit for this year...I love to wear sparkles on Christmas and New Years.  Dont let anyone take away your sparkle!!
 Another idea for a rug--I am into horses and ships...for some reason.  Do not have a horse or a boat...nor do I sail or live on the ocean...still love ships right now...looking for a huge model ship that I like.
 This is a rug I am gathering wool for...bought this way too small wool suit online and will use for the blue in this rug and maybe the sailing ship if I do that.
 I would like to do an English Flag for my family room in rug hooking....will make it look a bit old...tea stained kind of...

Monday, December 17, 2012

About living in the moment

When we ,as artists, start worrying about taking the time to create art....saying to ourselves that we should be doing this or that....here is an article about living in the moment...and tying to have less stress and worry in your life.  For me, creating art, does help my stress level....I do tend to get lost in what I am doing..and I do live in the present moment when I am creating.  How about you?

The Draining Worry Habit and How to Overcome It


Image by amira_a (license).
“Worry often gives a small thing a big shadow.”
Swedish Proverb
One of the most common and subtly – or not so subtly – destructive habits people get wrapped up in must be worrying.
It has certainly been one of my biggest issues.
I get a lot of emails from people feeling that they worry too much about work or their loved ones and they create create elaborate and negative scenarios in their minds. And it sucks so much energy from them.
In the past few years I have become pretty good at handling worry quickly when it pops up. And to keep it far from my mind most of the time.
And I’d like to share my most effective tips with all of you that may have this draining habit in your life. I truly hope you’ll find something that helps in this article.
Stay in the present moment and today.
Worries come from imagining how things will go terribly wrong sometime in the future. They become bigger as you spend time building elaborate scenarios in your mind. And can become even bigger as you replay that one bad event from your past over and over in your mind and fear that it will be your reality in the future this time too.
When you spend too much of your energy and time imagining the future or reliving the past then that often leads to a lot of worries.
So an important key to drastically less worries is to not spend more time than necessary there and to spend most of your time in the present moment and on this current day.
Two of the most powerful tips I use to do that are:
  • Just take care of today. When you start your day or when worries start to cloud your mind then sit down for a minute. Breathe. Then narrow your focus greatly. Don’t look forward because then you’ll see all the things you have to do to, for example, reach a goal. Instead, focus on just taking care of today. Nothing more. Tomorrow will come in time. And then you will take care of that today too.
  • Tell yourself: now I am… As I do something I simply tell myself this in my mind: Now I am X. For example, if I am brushing my teeth, then I tell myself: Now I am brushing my teeth. If am writing then I tell myself: Now I am writing. It is easy to drift away to the future or past. This phrase keeps me grounded in the present moment and in today.
Ask yourself: How many of the things you feared would happen in your life did actually happen?
Most things you fear will happen never happen. They are just monsters in your own mind. And if they happen then they will most often not be as painful or bad as you expected. Worrying is most often just a waste of time.
This is of course easy to say. But if you remind yourself of how little of what you feared throughout your life that has actually happened you can start to release more and more of that worry from your thoughts.
So whenever I am struck with worries, I ask myself this question and I remind myself of how little of the things that I have worried about over the years that have actually become real. I find that this most often calms me down.
Refocus your mind from the powerless worrying to how you can solve the situation.
To move out of worry I find it enormously helpful to just start moving and taking action to solve what I am concerned about.
And the simplest way to do so is to think for little while and to come up with one thing I can do to start solving this worry inducing situation. And then to start doing that in small steps to keep discomfort, fear and procrastination away until the situation is under control or not an issue anymore.

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Copyright 2006-2012 Henrik Edberg.

"Say Hello to my little friend!"





Those of you who know the movie (Pacino)...know what that saying is all about...but this is not THAT!!  I got a new puppy on Sunday....Still have not named him...I feel like I need to live with him a bit and his name will come forth.  He sure is cute.  He is a mix of schnauzer and bichon frieze.  Called a chonzer.  All I know he is cute!  I suppose as he gets older I will have his hair cut as a schnauzer but now he has that just got from bed look :) !!!!  Bed head!  He is more himself than he has been the first 2 days..today he is feisty...and I am saying to myself ..oh my, what have I done??!!  But he is going outside pretty good ....so heres hoping potty training will be successful...I have to keep my eye on him 24-7  as he is chewing on cords and shoes and anything he thinks smells and looks like it needs chewing.  His cuteness will get him through....I keep telling myself ..this too shall pass and then he will be awesome.  He really is already...my heart is exploding with love for him already.  I cannot leave his sight or he cries like someone is torturing him,...hey, at least I feel needed and loved for sure!!!  Here are some pictures...my camera went dead after I took these so I cant take more till I go get batteries. We named him Hans. 

Sunday, December 9, 2012

 This is an antique rug ...and I think I am going to do this next for my next hooked rug.  I'll have to make up the edges not shown...because this is all I have.  But I love it.
 Another thought is a willow pattern rug....Here are some examples of rugs and quilts taken from the traditional willow pattern....


I think this very old painting will make a fantastic rug....so it is in the running...
I love this painting...it would make an awesome rug as well I think......yes.........


Friday, December 7, 2012

I am sharing this because I am thinking how we as artists can say "I cant do that"..and how we need to be bolder and how amazing art can be created if we allow it to happen!  Ask these questions of yourself and see what you come up with.

“People Say ‘I Can’t’ Too Much.”

Happiness interview: C.C. Chapman.
How did I first learned about C.C. Chapman? I can’t remember; it’ s lost in the sands of time. Somewhere in the wilds of the internet. He’s a writer, photographer, speaker, and creativity and social media guru, so there are a lot of ways I could have encountered him.
We finally met in real life at SXSW, the big blogger conference in Austin. He is as nice and interesting in person as he is on the screen and page.
I’m thrilled for him: his first book, Amazing Things Will Happen: A Real-World Guide on Achieving Success & Happiness, just came out. (In the photo, you can see him holding the very first copy.) Here’s what I wrote about it: “For people who want to make a leap into a new kind of career but just can’t quite make the jump, C.C. Chapman offers practical advice, real-life examples, and thoughtful, realistic encouragement that will allow them to dare to do amazing things.”
He’s done a huge amount of thinking and writing about how to make life happier, so I was very eager to get the chance to ask him some questions.
Gretchen: What’s a simple activity that consistently makes you happier?
C.C.: Cooking. It doesn’t matter if I’m scrambling some eggs or making a full on Thanksgiving dinner. When I’m in the kitchen I’m always happy.
What’s something you know now about happiness that you didn’t know when you were 18 years old?
That there is more to life than money. When I was coming out of High School I was too focused on how much my paycheck was going to be above other things. Yes, money is important and can help you be happier, but it should never be priority one. Having a loving wife (who was my girlfriend back then) who supports me and is my best friend on top of my wife brings more happiness than any wad of cash.
Is there anything you find yourself doing repeatedly that gets in the way of your happiness?
I get caught in the “click stream” as I call it sometimes. That is where you go from checking your inbox, to seeing what is being said on Twitter, then over to Facebook, then a quick look at my Google Reader and back to my inbox. Suddenly and without notice I’ll realize that an hour has gone by and I’ve really accomplished nothing. I get frustrated and angry at myself for allowing it to happen.
Is there a happiness mantra or motto that you’ve found very helpful? (e.g., I remind myself to “Be Gretchen.”)
My dad always told me, “To each their own.” There are always going to be people we encounter who have different beliefs, tactics and ways they live their lives. It is way too easy to get bothered and unhappy about these people. But, if what they are doing is not directly causing you or someone you care about harm, than just let them be and move on because challenging them is not going to help you in any way and usually just adds up to more frustration. This little bit of advice has made my life MUCH happier.
If you’re feeling blue, how do you give yourself a happiness boost?
Listening to music is the first thing that comes to mind. I’ve always loved music and popping on a favorite song or album always makes me smile. No matter how frustrated or down I might be, the right song can always make me a bit happier and break out of any funk big or small.
Is there anything that you see people around you doing or saying that adds a lot to their happiness, or detracts a lot from their happiness? 
People say “I can’t” too much. They make excuses for why they are not doing whatever it is that they wish they were doing. When I challenge them and ask for specific reasons why they can’t do something I rarely get something that isn’t a personal roadblock that they’ve put up themselves. Sure, whatever path they are wishing they were on might not be an easy one, but life rarely is. People would be much happier if they realized that they’ve got to work hard to achieve their dreams, but that hard work towards a goal that they really want will in fact make them happier.
Have you always felt about the same level of happiness, or have you been through a period when you felt exceptionally happy or unhappy – if so, why? If you were unhappy, how did you become happier?
When I was much younger I was not very happy at all. I was bullied and didn’t have very many friends growing up since we moved around a lot. It had a profound effect on me and my life as I have always cherished those people that are my friends. As I got older, I realized that friends shouldn’t ever be based on quantity, but rather on quality. Having kids of my own this is something I try to teach them. Popular kids are rarely as happy as they seem on the outside. Having a core set of close and trusted friends is a cornerstone of why I’m so happy these days compared to back then.
Is there some aspect of your home that makes you particularly happy?
I work out of a home office, and I love it because I’m surrounded by memories and comforts. I have a big couch and a leather reading chair that I can kick back in and unwind. There are lots of windows to let the sun in and photos and prints all over the walls. I can’t look anywhere without seeing a knick knack or little treasure from one of my trips and I always feel comfortable and happiest there.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Video to watch of rug artist

I came across this on my facebook page tonight.  I loved watching it.  A lot of you have been telling me over and over...use what you find...use other things than wool...just hook with whatever!...That I dont have to buy expensive wool....(even though the hand dyed wools are soooooo nice!)  But I like her point that it becomes more folk art more like how women used to hook ..with what they found...and has more meaning and life and history...before you even finish the rug...because of the materials...and I thought about this...this is how I decorate my home and dress myself as well.  I like used things.  I like the history of objects and the variety you get when you acquire those things that speak to you and that make you happy and not that they necessarily are the "correct" or "in" thing....but the objects...or in this case, the materials for your art...make you happy even while you are making it.  To me, after all...its in the dream, the gathering, and the making that makes me want to continue always making art.....for me...that's almost all of it....and when I love what I have made...all the better!  It is neat to look at it finished and remember the journey you had while making it.  What was happening in your life?  What events took place?  What space where you in in your life at that time?  Where did the materials come from?  Etc....But I get such sanity and peace and healing and excitement from creating art....that that IS what is important. She encouraged me to get creative......which is always good.  Today, I started setting up my "art studio" space....getting everything out of boxes...etc...its going to take awhile and will probably get moved many times before I end up where I am supposed to be in the house...but the thing with rug hooking as opposed to my quilting...is that I can grab the hoop (like she did in this video) and just sit anywhere...which is nice when I finally get all my supplies and wool and cutter etc...out so it all can be grabbed.  Happy Hooking!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Day Before Thanksgiving




White Chocolate Cranberry Macadamia Nut Cookies

White Chocolate Cranberry Macadamia Nut Cookies

Ingredients

1 cup unsalted butter
1-1/2 cups brown sugar, packed
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-1/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup macadamia nuts
1 cup white chocolate chips
1-1/2 cups sweetened, dried cranberries

Cooking Instructions


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

2. Sift together flour, soda and salt in medium bowl. Set aside. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, cream butter in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add sugar and vanilla; stir to combine. Add eggs one at a time and beat until combined. Gradually add flour 1/2 cup at a time.

3. Fold in the macadamia nuts, white chocolate chips and dried cranberries.

4. Drop by heaping teaspoon on a baking sheet 1-1/2 inches apart.

5. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire rack.

 These cookies look awesome I think for this time of year!  Enjoy!


So....Im still alive.  Some things have gotten easier.  Im not afraid anymore.  For a long time I was so afraid at dark...fine during the daylight hours...but at dark I got scared of every noise and just terrified to be alone.  Now...Im fine.  Noises dont scare me...I walk around the house, even in the dark, and have no fear....this is huge.  I feel confident in this small way...not that nothing could happen...I mean people do get robbed and worse,but you know...chances are...so I am ok. 
Somehow...I have been JUST able to sort of pay the bills??!!!  I mean...the heat is still on...my tv works, I have internet and a land line and electricity and running water....so yea!!!! (For now)  I found out I qualify for a free cell phone...my friend calls it an Obama phone.  So, I even have a cell....although it rarely works..always says no service!  But beggers cant be choosers......and hopefully it will work in an emergency...which is what it is for. Thank God for my library...it keeps me busy...reading and I have been getting tons of movies to watch there as well.  My cat is a soul around me to help a bit with the loneliness...but the loneliness is the worst thing of all. 
I need a car so badly.....a car is first on my list of things to buy.....you cannot imagine how hard it is to not have transportation in an area where there is no busline...I just feel so trapped and isolated.  It is very very limiting as to how I can entertain myself as well with no car....if I had a car (assuming I had gas money) I could go to my quilt clubs, my book clubs, and I was thinking of possibly joining a choir....or some such groups.....but I find I cant even get to the grocery store.  I do have a friend who takes me when she can to the grocery store.  And there is a local food pantry that has helped meet the needs left after the grocery money is all gone...(which is fast!---man, groceries are expensive arent they???)  Also, a Godsend, I found out a qualify for free rides to all my doctor appointments....which is also HUGE!  I am so thankful to be able to get to my appointments...for awhile I wasnt sure how that was going to work.  I finally have a therapist and a psychiatrist--as of yesterday.... who will, fingers crossed, hopefully be able to help me with some much needed medical therapy and prescriptions.  I have been without medical therapy for this WHOLE time...in my crisis and I have SO needed help.  So, I have some HOPE now in that way...finally...thank you God....
This is a time where sometimes I think I have little to be Thankful for this Thanksgiving...and then look at all the blessings I just wrote about!!!!  You know, these blessings are better than fancy trips or material possessions....or whatever in the past I may have dreamed for.....these are life blessings ....meat and bones...life sustaining...and although its been humbling and hard to find this help...its there!...  Someone from a church group actually has come over and started putting plastic all over my windows in the inside for the Winter...they are coming back to do the upstairs...how cool is that?  And he got my clothes dryer working!!! I wasnt sure what I was going to do...I was picturing hanging my wet clothes in the freezing cold and bringing them inside as stiff sculptures....I am extremely excited about my dryer working!!
  So, I thank you God for all the people and the blessings that you have put in place to help me this year.  I think too, of all the people hurt by Sandy this year...and so I know I am not alone...by any means. 
Here's hoping you all have a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving...and that you can SEE your many blessings...because we all have reasons to be happy and feel blessed...we all do....sometimes you just have to look at things a bit different is all....have a bit different expectations and learn to see the silver linings...and the glass half full....Like I have always told my children.....attitude is everything.  While I am say that, I still do struggle each day to remember that.....but it is so true.  We have the power to feel however we want to feel.  Hopeful, happy, blessed, loved and gracious......if we choose!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Just finished this great book!

I just finished this book.... I totally would recommend it...at first I thought it was really light reading...but then I caught myself in deep thought several times and crying and laughing...good combinations! Hit home in several ways....spend some time curled up this fall with this book!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

My new thrift store sweater.  I am not going to be buying too many new fall/winter clothes this year...but really wanted a sweater like this...also bought a nice cream turtleneck to go under...  Looking for some new comfy boots...I plan on wearing this all the time...why on my fiber art blog...well...its fiber...art I guess only if I had knit it!  Alas....I just wanted to share.  Hope its not too itchy!
 And here are the boots that I am going to win....just watch!  If anybody is bidding on these know that I AM GOING to get these boots regardless of price!!  Haaaa MUaaaaaa!  Im really just kidding ...sort of! :)   but I do love them and I do hope I win them...they look really comfy and they are my size!!  I will wear the living daylight out of these boots!  I will know in a little over an hour. Oh yea..;they are mine!!! YEA....I cant wait to live in these!  I love all BORN shoes and clogs and boots....BORN is my favorite brand second only to RIKER brand.....YiPEEEE

Thursday, July 26, 2012

From Handmadeology.com an excellent site!


from Handmadeology.com   check out this site...very good for those who create and sell.


Marketing 101: Niche Markets Part 4
Have You Done Your Newsletter?

Part 1: Niche Markets
Part 2: What is your wackiest marketing idea?
Part 3:  Getting out there
Yes, a newsletter is “one more thing to do,” but it can be one of your best marketing
tools. You have a unique product, one that many people may not understand. Your
newsletter is how you explain what you do and create interest that leads to sales.
I’ll take you through our own journey with Marble-T Design. If there are mistakes to
make, we’ve made them. We’ve read a lot about doing newsletters, looked at programs
available, and just generally put off doing this important piece of marketing.
We started with a general monthly newsletter, sent as a regular email. Nothing fancy
at all. We figured out how to keep an email list of preferred customers, and we figured
out how to send to groups, without having to do each one separately. This was 15 years
ago, and trust me, initially we sent them one at a time to every single person. Thankfully,
email programs and online assistance have come a LONG way since then!
However, we had probably $75 in sales every single month. We had about 300
subscribers (all opt-in off the website), and we had a wider variety of items available
from our website.
Then we just stopped. We kept meaning to get back to doing the newsletter, but it never
happened. We went through two computers and new email programs, and we transferred
the names each time. Now we’re with a new program on line, we’re up to just over 200
subscribers, and we have a nice, new format that is developing.
What are we doing now that seems to be working?
1. We made the commitment to do a monthly newsletter. This may seem pretty easy
to do, but we had problems. We wanted something classier than just a plain ole email.
So it meant looking at various email programs available on line. We have now done
April, May, and June for this year, and the July newsletter is now in draft form. If you
procrastinate, then this is not something easy to accomplish.
2. We looked at several of the various email/marketing programs available and
tried two of them. A lot of internet marketers recommend Aweber, but there is a cost
involved. More importantly, I didn’t feel it would work for us. There were a lot of options
we didn’t need, and probably won’t need, so we eliminated that. We initially went with
Constant Contact, monthly for $15, with a sixty-day free trial period (that’s what sold
us). Technical support was fabulous, and they designed a template for us (free of charge)
that complemented our website. We had a few concerns: the learning curve was steeper
than I would have liked (especially since I was still working full time and was limited
in marketing time). The main concern was that I couldn’t put more than 5 pictures in a
newsletter without having to go to a premium plan. Let’s face it, niche markets have to be
very visual, and the limited number of photos just didn’t work for us.
3. Decide on a program to use, even if it is just doing a monthly email from your
regular email program. We decided on Mail Chimp, completely free up to several
thousand subscribers. It subscribes people very easily, sends you notifications, and
provides some really good, easy-to-interpret stats on how your newsletter is doing.
And….I don’t seem to be limited in pictures. The learning curve may seem steep if you
haven’t used the program before, but it didn’t take me long, and now I have a set template
to use each time.
4. Make sure all the names/subscribers are “opt-in.” You can have problems with
sending spam emails if you just randomly send to people who haven’t subscribed. Don’t
bombard folks with unwanted emails. If folks have signed up for (in our case) free fabric,
I’ve included a note on the sign-up form that they will be added to our data base and
receive emails of coupons and news about marbling.
5. Put up subscription forms on your blog, website, Facebook page. Mail Chimp
gives you code to add easily. For your blog, you probably just need a widget for the side
bar. Facebook has a link to get Mail Chimp on your business page. You might have to
have your web host do the code to get your sign-up form on your website. Have your
sign-up everywhere you can.
6. Think about consistency in your newsletters. Physical appearance lets you brand
yourself through your newsletter. Let people see the same layout and features each time
they receive a mailing from you. Be consistent with the time of month you send the
newsletter. We schedule in our datebooks to be sure the newsletter gets written in the
third week of the month and then goes out on a Tuesday the last week of the month. This
is based on research showing when it is best to send a mailing, including what time of the
day has a higher opening rate.
7. Think about each part of the newsletter as you format it. I’ll show pieces of the
previous newsletter for examples. Make yours uniquely yours.
* First, have a heading that won’t automatically send your newsletter into a spam
folder. Stay away from “free” and words that could hint of spam. We finally decided
on “Out of the Marbling Tray,” so that it would be obvious the newsletter came from us.
Also, work your elevator pitch into your heading. Keep reminding people of what you’re
about. Ours is “An Ancient Art Made Modern.”

* Second, keep the obvious sales pitch for the end of the newsletter. We put our
Monthly Special at the very bottom, as we want folks to get to know us and our art; that’s
more important to us.

* Third, make the special offer something they won’t find on the website. Make it
very special for your subscribers. Consider a freebie – we do a monthly give-away of
marbled fabric.
* Fourth, use pictures of what you do! We always try to include some information
about marbling, including links to YouTube videos of exquisite Turkish marbling.

* Fifth, feel free to spotlight others. This raises your chances of getting your
newsletter passed along to others. We spotlighted our marbling supplier in our last
newsletter. Let folks know you’re willing to share information.


Sunday, July 22, 2012

From Enchanted Home blog...wanted the recipe not to get lost!

Tina's  Salmon.....soooo easy.

OK for the salmon...easy peasy! I have another similar recipe which calls for making your own lemon dill sauce but honestly this way is so much easier and at least as good.

I large salmon filet
2 lemons sliced very thin
a small bunch of fresh dill (I prefer the fresh over the dried but in a pinch you can use dried)
Sea salt
Red pepper 
Olive oil
2 cloves of garlic cut 
1 bottle Mccormick lemon butter dill sauce

All you do is wash the wish, pat it dry, pour the entire bottle of marinade on the fish, squeeze half a lemon over the fish, add good sized pinch of sea salt, pepper chopped fresh dill, garlic and drizzle with olive oil, place 5 or 6 lemon slices over fish. Cover with aluminum and refrigerate, I have refrigerated for up to several hours. I bake it either in a pyrex dish or a baking tray for about 30 minutes and turn it up the last 3-4 to crisp it just a little bit. Take it out, squeeze the other half of the lemon over the entire fish and voila!  That is it!! Could it be any easier? And its very tasty!

Tina's  Salmon.....soooo easy.

OK for the salmon...easy peasy! I have another similar recipe which calls for making your own lemon dill sauce but honestly this way is so much easier and at least as good.

I large salmon filet
2 lemons sliced very thin
a small bunch of fresh dill (I prefer the fresh over the dried but in a pinch you can use dried)
Sea salt
Red pepper 
Olive oil
2 cloves of garlic cut 
1 bottle Mccormick lemon butter dill sauce

All you do is wash the wish, pat it dry, pour the entire bottle of marinade on the fish, squeeze half a lemon over the fish, add good sized pinch of sea salt, pepper chopped fresh dill, garlic and drizzle with olive oil, place 5 or 6 lemon slices over fish. Cover with aluminum and refrigerate, I have refrigerated for up to several hours. I bake it either in a pyrex dish or a baking tray for about 30 minutes and turn it up the last 3-4 to crisp it just a little bit. Take it out, squeeze the other half of the lemon over the entire fish and voila!  That is it!! Could it be any easier? And its very tasty!

Monday, July 16, 2012

We finally moved to our new house!

Our new house!  We moved in 2 weeks ago.  It will be a huge work in progress.  If you like home decorating as well as fiber arts like I do you may want to follow me/us on my other blog which is more about our total house remodel project and other of my ramblings. (lovingallthingsfrench.blogspot.com). I am on that blog much more than this one...mostly as my focus has been finding a home and decorating etc...more than creating artwork lately.  This isnt to say that I am not very very excited to get my art studio built and start being more creative again very soon!!  My husband will be building a  2 story garage (the house currently does not have a garage any longer since the fall of the carriage house.) with an art studio on the bottom.  This will be the nicest art studio space that I have ever had and will overlook the creek running in our yard and will have a walk out to a deck with a hot tub...He is going to put a fireplace in my studio and I sit and dream and plan away at my potential future space!  Also, I asked him to put a kitchenette and 3/4 bath in the studio so I wont have to go to the main area of the house till I am good and done with creating on any given day or into the night!.....SO..I do have plans to once again get creating. When we get to the art studio building and creating...this I will post on this blog!
 I cant tell you how relieved we are to have moved and can quit looking and to be in our, hopefully, forever home.  This house is old and needs so much work and love.  We have a 16 page list we are going to try to follow to keep us on task.  Basically, we are taking things one room at a time.  Not so fun, but needed, is to start in the basement.  So, I will not be posting any house remodel pics till after the basement is done. (It is a really yucky basement....I wont even go down there....)  The house will not always be purple....my husband has plans to brick it with antique cream city bricks and stone.  His specialty is masonry so he really excited to have this be his masonry masterpiece!  We have so much to do that it is easy for me to get totally overwhelmed.  I have to remind myself to be patient. 
We moved to a new city so Its been fun to do some exploring and learning and meeting new people.  However, as you can tell by the grass in the picture above, we are experiencing a heat wave and drought that is surpassing even what we had in 1988....Its bad...and its hot...and we dont have air conditioning!  In fact, many of the old windows do not even work properly and many do not have screens...so its been really uncomfortable and its been too hot to even walk around the town.  But everything IS in walking distance once the weather is tolerable.   My first new friends have been my swimming ladies.  Every day at 11:00 I go right across the street to the city pool and do water aerobics.  I love it...and I love my new swimming friends!  In fact, one of them mentioned the possibility of starting an art group when she found out I was an artist.  I always thought a small art group whether or not they did the same art as you or not, would be fun and help to keep ourselves accountable to keep at creating art.  If you know you have 'show and tell' or whatever or at least someone to show what you've been up to, you would/might be more likely to get yourself creating!  Also, we could collaborate our own little art shows a couple times a year.  Course, I also want to start a local book club as I dont want to be driving to my old book club anymore and I was thinking I wanted to start a dinner group here as well.  I love to entertain and I also love to see other people's homes...and Im a foodie....so these are some things, besides starting my new church (a block away!) that I am looking forward to starting and getting involved with!  I want to start a women's ministry group at my new church in the fall.   (Wish you, my blogging friends lived close so you could be a part of all of it!) 
If you dont mind, I might just plop down and write about my life here even though I am not creating art right now.  My art is trying to figure out how to remodel and decorate my home...which is art! I still spend quite a bit of time compiling fiber art ideas and looking at what every body else is doing.  I am going to go to Rachelle LeBlanc's Rug hooking week retreat...I thought it was this August...but then I found out its not until next year!  Alls good though as I really was not in the right place yet to be going to week retreat right now.  Cant wait already till next year...I love Rachelle and I love her rug hooking!  I am so inspired by her work.  If anyone wants to go with me in Michigan next summer let me know as it already filling up and believe it or not you already need to put your deposit in!  It will coincide with the big rug hooking convention every year..which I am having a brain fart right now with the name of it but you know!  The retreat is just an hour away...so I was thinking of going to that for the first 2-3 days and then on to the retreat with Rachelle.  Like I said, I would love to drive with someone(if you live anwhere near me) or at least room with someone...its more fun that way!  Let me know.
The Artistry of Hooking People Workshop and retreat
Musso Farm, South Haven, Michigan
August 18-21, 2013
Classes will be from 9-4:00.   Cost Details-$750 total
Includes Artistry of Rug Hooking Workshop book and wool for skin tones and hair color.
Contact : Jenny Drilon
jdrilon@myway.com
269-325-8873
 Accomodations. Private room, meals provided. This is a lovely farm with many sleeping options. There are two houses and a couple of cottages. Classes will take place in the main house unless weather permits we will hook in a lovely screen porch. Meals will take place in the main house. Rooms will be in Main house, cottages and Riverside.









Under Watchfull Eyes, Rachelle LeBlanc Hooked Rug 


Oh, and this--to the right is an awesome book I am reading....I highly recommend it!  I keep my journal right next to me...and I write as much as read...I have to remember all the good stuff for later! :)

Sunday, May 13, 2012

How to make a slipcover

This post is a copy from Miss Mustard Seed blog....I wanted it on my blog so I can use it later for reference.  Please note that it is not mine ...all credit should go to her and her blog.  Please follow her if youd like...looks like a good blog.

How to Make Slipcovers – a Six Part Video Series

A little over a year ago I made a six part video tutorial series on making slipcovers.  I used a wing chair as an example, but you can take these skills and make a slipcover for any piece of furniture.  I’ve received so many wonderful e-mails and comments from people with all level of sewing ability who used this series to make their first slipcover.  I thought it was time to put them in one post, so it’s easy to find, easy to share and easy to use as a resource.
 





You don’t have to be intimidated by the thought of making a slipcover any longer!  Enjoy!

Friday, May 11, 2012

The Purple House









The Purple House....obviously, we would need to paint right away...and then perhaps Tim will brick it with old cream city brick....than would look very nice. 
Good Morning!  Today we are looking at the Purple House.  This is our last chance to own a house.  The house we are renting is sold and we have to move out by the 22nd!  We had an offer on a house..which just wasnt meant to be I guess.  If we do not like this house or for some reason this house does not work out then we will have to rent month to month...somewhere furnished and put all of our packed boxes in storage until our money is liquid and we can actually buy without trying for creative financing.  I have been praying and praying that the timing for our finances could work out for us...but now we are totally running out of time.  I cannot tell you enough how stressful and sad and exhausting it has been ...this search for a home....this hoping that the money comes....I pray pray pray...and wonder what God's plan could possibly be for me.  He asks us to pray without ceasing...ask you and you shall receive....I know his plan is always better than any I could ever come up with...but I am very confused as to what good can come from us being so stressed at the last moment...to be packing with no where to go...to have the possibility really to be homeless for a time .....I am SO TOO old for this!  I cannot see the benefit in any way, shape, or form...and I try to be patient...I try to say to God...your will be done...etc etc..etc... but I just dont understand his will.....and I am feeling forgotten and uncared for by him actually.
So,  I found this house yesterday...its our last ditch effort to find a home that we could live with...(live IN) and that we actually like and that we could move into by the 22nd!!!  This is a foreclosure....so very very very cheap.  (Maybe God will like that part~lol)  Maybe he thought all the other houses were too expensive for us....maybe he knows something I do not and it would be better to have a cheap house....he DOES know after all that Tim can fix and make anything in the house better himself as he is a builder....So, this house is bank owned...and affordable and empty.  It is in a town very close...much closer than we were looking previously.  (Nicer to be closer to my parents and for my youngest child who has 1 more year of high school before going off to college).  Obviously it needs some work...but from the pictures anyway..there seems to be potential.  I am praying some more and keeping my fingers crossed and sending positive thoughts bouncing off everywhere...positive energy ......positive energy.....I like some of the nice details in the house...the size is right...2500 sq ft....the yard is nice...1 acre with a stream....We see this house in 2 1/2 hours.....and if it does not work out...we desperately will need to find a rental...and storage units for our house full of stuff....this is not going to be fun. I try to keep going forward...but we are out of options.  Still if for some reason, this be my last day to live...I dont want to live it so sad and worried....I will try to be happy.....carpe diem regardless!
Hoping there is enough room in here to add a separate shower.





I am loving the windows!!! Nice right?  Has potential...right?