Saturday, December 31, 2016

Starting the Year with Clean Sheets

Tonight, I'll put fresh sheets on the bed.  As the year grows old and morphs into the a different year, the new sheets will take me back to an easier time, a simpler time, when clean sheets were all I needed to feel safe and loved. As I sleep and wake in the new year, the discomfort of change that a new year, a new president brings is over shadowed by the joy of clean sheets. 

When I was a child, and this was when we didn't have fabric softeners or if we did, my mother didn't believe in them,  the sheets were very crisp and sharp when they came off the clothes line.  I remember jumping into bed and feeling their sharpness pressing into my nightgown, but as I moved and scrunched the sheets, they softened and became smooth.  As they smoothed, I was comforted in knowing that this was what would happen, and I would sleep in peace. 

Clean sheets.  The new year.  Comfort.  Joy.  This will be good.  
Goodbye 2016.
Welcome 2017.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

 1) The election is over!  We have a new president.  Now, I wish the hate  would stop.

2) Getting ready for knee surgery on Monday.  I'll be glad for that to be over.

3) Walks at Minneopa Falls were nice.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

A Blog Post Can Be A Statement

Be kind.
Forgive.
We're all in this together.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

God Bless America

Whether you supported 
Hilary 
or
President Elect Trump,
the time has come
to for us to gather together
to
forgive,
offer peace,
and
move on with our lives.
God Bless America
because if we  don't trust in Him
we are going to screw it up again 
and
again
and 
again
and 
again.


Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Monday, November 7, 2016

A blog post can be a thought or a Meme with reflections by You and Me

Thoughts on the Psalm

We are made with a soul and body.
In order to live and grow, the body must have water.

Our souls must also be fed to grow closer to God.  A plant which grows in the soil must be watered or it will wither and die.

We all long for something greater than ourselves.

In our secular world, we find ourselves longing for the things of the world, especially money and all that money can buy.

Our souls cannot be nourished by worldly things.

Our souls can only be nourished, fed, and watered by God.

The psalmist speaks of the longing for God.  Do I long for God?  How do I satisfy this longing?

The obvious answers are that we put God first in our lives and that we live for God and God alone?

Do I do that?  Do I put God first in my life?

Forgive me, Lord, I do not.  I long for you, but I feel that longing with the wrong things.  
'
I stand aside, and I let the world and all of its temptations take me down.

Lord, I ask for your forgiveness for this.

Let my daily prayer be:

Help me, Lord, God, to make me and my home Christ Centered.  Help us to put You first above all else.  Help us to live for You and with You in our very troubled world.
Teach us to love You above all else.
Amen.

What are your thoughts on these two psalm verses?
I'd love to hear them.

A Blog Post Can Be: I Made Saurkraut this Weekend!

It should be ready by Wednesday or Thursday.
The cabbage needs to ferment, 
then it will be ready.
Homemade saurkraut  is full or probiotics that help your gut.
By helping your gut, you also help your immune system.
No matter, I love saurkraut!
Store bought is okay.
Homemade is 
THE BEST.

You can make large or, like mine, small amounts.
All you need is some fresh cabbage and salt.
Yes, that's it.
Very little can go wrong.
The most important element of making the kraut is cleanliness.
Everything must be sterilized.
After that, the rest is easy peasy.
You simply chop up your cabbage, add salt (about 1 tablespoon per head of cabbage), let the cabbage sit until you begin to see a bit of liquid forming.  That takes about 10-15 minutes.  Then stir with your hands until you see more liquid, put in a jar.  Tamp is down as you add the cabbage.  Cover
and wait.

Here are some great sites that will give you the best information about fermenting veggies.




Now, do you see the blue lid on the jar?  That's called a pickle pipe.  It allows the gases to escape from the jar, but it does not let mold into your jar. 
I found those on Amazon.
Inside the jar is what is called a 
glass pebble.
It's much larger than a pebble.
I also found those on Amazon.  They keep the cabbage weighted down so that the liquids can rise and ferment the cabbage.   Love them!
 I also found those on Amazon.
So, if you're interested, make some kraut!
If not, that's okay, too.
Whatever you do, have fun!

Sunday, November 6, 2016

A Blog Can Be a Question: I don't know If You'll be Watching the Election Results or not...

but if you are,
and you feel like coloring,
here's a face
that you can complete 
and color.
Just right click,
hit save,
and 
it's yours,

I hope you relax and enjoy your 
Sunday.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

A Blog Can be A Reminder that A Group Did Something Amazing for You!


This is the group that brought Pixie into my life, 
and for that,
I am forever grateful!!!!!
Please help if you can.
They need your help to take care of the hounds!

Friday, November 4, 2016

A Blog Post Can Be: Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

1) Jenny and I drove out to The Falls today.  It's a state park about 
20 minutes from here.
We had a great time!

2) I am amazed at the weather this November.  Our highs are still in the 50's - 60's - 70's!
Yes, a few days that warm.
Maybe I won't close up the woman cave yet.

3) The election is almost over!

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

A Blog Post Can Be Worth Repeating: Memories

I stopped when I opened the small, corked jar,
and
for one, brief second,
I stopped breathing.
More memories,
certainly 
unexpected.
Who would have thought that someone
at one time
placed these roses in that jar.
The fragrance was still there,
not strong, just a whisp of scent to remind me
of 
that Mother's Day,
that anniversary,
that birthday,
I'm not sure when, 
but the memories flooded back.
I'm just not sure which one.
Surprise!
Memories in a jar.
 

A Blog Post Can Be and Idea

I read a short article the other day, and I don't remember where, 
but the article suggested 
that a person would remember their 
To-Do List
by d
drawing the list
rather than writing it out.
I thought I'd give it a try.
This was part of my to do list
the other day.
I have to admit I remembered it
without looking.
One of the items is completed.  I haven't forgotten, 
I just haven't had the time.

Can you figure out what I have left to do? 
It's #1.
Close up the Woman Cave.
Have you ever tried something like this?
How do you remember things more easily?

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

A Blog Post Can be a Letter: Dear November,

Dear November,
The months have flown by this year.
Somehow, I missed the advent of fall, and next month, winter will officially be here. 
Today is cloudy and cold.
That's typical weather for you, November.
Life has changed so much, again, but there are some steadying influences this month.

Last year, on Thanksgiving,
I thought I was going to loose Pixie.
I never dreamed she'd still be with us this November.
For that, I am grateful.
Pixie turned 12 this year.
I don't know how much longer I have with her, but she has been a great gift from God to me.

 As far as Thanksgiving goes, I'm not sure that I'll be able to get together with our "extended family."
Knee surgery is the week before Thanksgiving.  Well the kids can go and bring me some food back.
That's  ok.
Pixie, kitties and I can celebrate until everyone comes back.

 We'll see our first snowfall this month.  
Brrrrrrrrrrrr.
To me the first snowfall is the most beautiful.
After that, I'd rather see rain, not freezing rain, just rain.

Well, November, there's really not much more to say.
I'm not fond of your weather, so, other than that, I hope you don't fly by.
Christmas comes way too soon.

I'm hungry for turkey and dressing.
Nummy.
Now, I have to clean my house.
It's time for me to go.

Good-bye.
Mallory
 
 

Monday, October 31, 2016

A Blog Post Can be What I Need the Most Anymore: A Nap

A year ago, naps were infrequent for me,
but now,
I need a nap every morning, 
and,
if I don't get one,
I get cranky and very tired.
Fred likes to sleep in his paper nest.
I like to sleep on the couch.
It's almost time.
I'm going to take a nap now.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

A Blog Post Can Be a Declarative Statement: I was Chosen

That's what my daughter tells me:
I was chosen.

When the kids were small,
I rarely had any peace and quiet 
in.the.bathroom,
unless they were watching TV,
playing  with friends, 
eating a snack,
you get the picture.
Then, they got older, 
and,
at last,
I had time to myself in the bathroom!

Now that Marvin and Fred have moved in with us,
I have been chosen,
again.


Fred has decided that my bathroom time, 
or as I now tell him,
my litter box time,
is our 
QUALITY TIME.

I have no choice.
A closed door does not stop him.
Pixie cannot stop him,
although she has tried,
but Fred gives her that look,
the one in the photo,
and
Pixie retreats to her bed to play dead.
No,
Fred has chosen me
in this time,
in this place.
This is our quality time.

Yes,
I am blessed.
I have been chosen.
Things could be worse.
It's ok.
I'm used to it now.
I have been chosen.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

A Blog Post Can Be a Thought...

Because someone is different does not mean they are bad, it only means they are different.
The Gals:
Maya, Bayaline, Jazzmun

Friday, October 28, 2016

A Blog Can Be Thankful: Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

1) It looks like Fred is starting to tolerate, not like, Pixie.  Fred is now willing to walk past Pixie without
hissing at her.   Pixie stays in place and doesn't run and hide.

2) Hit the thrift store today, and I found a wonderful sweater/poncho for the fall.  It's in perfect shape!

3) Found the perfect yarn on sale for my lighted rug.  Check Pinterest for this idea.

It was a good week.
 

Thursday, October 27, 2016

A Blog Post Can Be Something You Show: Mushroom Heads

I firmly believe that I am being drawn to a different type of 
"art"
rather than the bead and component aspect of polymer clay.
Things have happened,
and I won't go into details,
that have encouraged me to look at  sculptural art
as a means of expression.
I prefer 
sculpture.
So, let me introduce you to the
Mushroom Heads.
They are pieces, formerly 
jewelry components,
that are now attached to make them
Mushroom Heads.
As I cleaned out my other beads,
I found some I had saved, rather than thrown away.
Suddenly, I knew.
Mushroom Heads in a bed of roses.

Now, I have to figure out a base for them.
I'm sure something will turn up for the
Mushroom Heads.

Any suggestions?

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Sometimes a Blog is Worth Repeating: It's December 27, 2007

Do I look forward or back?
Do I dream of the future
or
Remember the past?
The
New Year,
2010,
will bring changes,
as did
2009.
So, what do I do
for the rest of the year,
Do I look forward
or
do I search my mind
for the past?
What should I do?

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

A Blog Post Can be an Event: The End of the Soap Making Season

For me, it's a season:
Soap Making.
I make soap in my garage because of the fumes from the lye.
The garage door must be open.
The time, I have found to be the best for making soap, is either early spring or early fall.
This year, the season was early fall. 
Today, the season ended.
The last soap was made with olive oil, coconut oil, grape seed oil, and rose petals harvested fresh from the garden.  
There is no fragrance, but it's pretty soap.
The extra soap bars will be given as gifts.
Personally, I love my soap!
Next year, when soap season begins, 
I might even try soap in layers. 
We'll see.
For now, the season has finished. 

Monday, October 24, 2016

A Blog Post Can be A Morning that Will Become a Memory: The Last Gift From the Garden

Rose Petals.
The last gift of the garden.
Now, they are in the soap.
It's beautiful.
I wish I could show you.  
Soon, the frost will put the bushes to sleep.
Spring will revive the plants, 
and
roses will bloom again.
Now, I have harvested the last of the blossoms.
The garden gave it's all.
Rose hips? 
you ask.
I'm not sure.
Perhaps there is more.
I must look in the bushes
then find a use.
Right now,
I have used the final gift of the garden.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

1) The colors are amazing!

2) The last of the tomatoes are in the freezer.

3) Rose petals are ready to make the soap.

It was a great week!

Friday, October 21, 2016

A Blog Can Be the Other Side of the Story

I am one of those mothers whose life was at risk during my last pregnancy. I was told the longer I carried, the higher the risk of losing my  life. If a woman learned of a risk late term, the solution is delivery of a viable baby, not abortion. I carried my baby to 30 weeks, and he and I survived. Who is to say my life was any more valuable than his? If anything the argument could be made as his mother, it would fall on my shoulders to protect him, even with my life. It seem backwards for a child to sacrifice for the parent.

I struggled to have my children, and losing my twin preemies makes one understand how precious life is.  This topic gets me riled up because we didn't know if I could have a child.  I have a friend who actually asked me to take her to an abortion clinic.  I was outraged. I tried so hard to have a baby, and we looked at adoption. With my child,  the doctors told me I had to have him to save myself.  I fought with them, insisted on steroid shots to help mature his lungs.  I was in ICU with Hellp syndrome and was told the only cure was to have the baby.  I denied consent.  I ended up having an emergency c-section. On my way into surgery,  I prayed for God to take me and save my son. I felt this warm feeling engulf me and knew God was taking control.  I cry when I tell the story.  I have felt God bless me and my son.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

A Blog Can Be Worth Repeating: I Had to Look Back to Find Him: Moments with God

He was there with me.  I just didn't know it.
Thanksgiving morning, my beautiful, loving, therapy dog came down the stairs dragging her foot.
I thought she had had a stroke during the night.
She would whine a little, but something was terribly wrong.
Of course, the vet was closed that day.
Since we were dining with friends, I decided I wouldn't go.  
I knew I had to stay home with Pixie.
My tall son came downstairs and lifted Pixie on to the couch to give her some relief.
I told him I wasn't going to dinner.
He suggested I call our friends and ask if we could bring Pixie along.
Maybe she would stay in the garage.
I did just that, and they said, "Bring her, but we'll put her in the house."
(They do not allow animals in their home normally.)
So, off we went to dinner.
Pixie was put in their bedroom on the floor, covered up with a blanket and our jackets.
I didn't realize it, but everyone kept sneaking into the bedroom with hugs, love and food.
I was still very worried.
Dinner was over.  My son picked her up and scooped her into the car.  I remember thinking that I could never carry that 60+ pound dog, but he did it with ease.
We got home.  Pixie was no better, so I called the vet.
She told me what to do to help relieve her pain, and she had me make an appointment for Friday.
Friday morning, we had a diagnosis:
Lumbosacral stenosis.
It's a very painful, degenerative condition, however,
IT IS TREATABLE!
Ka-ching!
Again, we went home, this time armed with medications that would relieve Pixie's pain.
She responded in less than an hour.
Now, she wasn't healed, and she had a long way to go, but she was clearly on the mend.
She was carried around in the strong arms of my son.
He took her out and walked her, as best she could be walked since she was dragging her leg and walking on her knuckles, to go potty.
That night I slept on the couch while Pixie slept on the love seat.
We all made our sacrifices, but Saturday morning, the pain had returned.  I called the vet.  They asked me to bring her right in.  There was a change of medications and a laser treatment was added.
You could see Pixie visibly relax.  Things got better for her.
Fast forward to Monday.
Pixie was going up and down the stairs, again, even though her leg was a little gimpy.  
She had an appointment for another laser treatment.
We beat the snow, and she feels better.
Her leg is still very weak.  She almost slipped going down the stairs, but I don't have to carry her.
So, where was God.  I had to look back to see and know that He had been with me through all of it.
1) Pixie's stenosis had never acted up before.  If my son had not been home, I could not have carried her.  She's just too heavy for me.  The timing was impeccable.
2)  Pixie responded to the medications within an hour, and they are not that expensive.  She will need to be on them the rest of her life.
3) Our friends allowed Pixie to come to Thanksgiving, and, they allowed her to be in their bedroom!
3) The laser treatments helped!  Not every dog responds the way Pixie did.
4) Even though her leg is a little bit weak, and it will, most likely stay that way, Pixie is learning how to use her other legs to adjust.
5) Even when I was at my lowest being worried about Pixie, I felt that everything was going to be all right.  I know she's 11, and I have been blessed with her.  I have to be ready to let her go.  The thought was overwhelming for me, but I made it through.
God found His way through the chaos of my live to let me know that He loved me and that He loved Pixie.
I was blessed and inspired to think about all of this.
Chaos is chaos, but Love trumps chaos with no effort at all.
Thank You, Lord, for reminding me that no matter what, no matter where, 
You are always there for me.
 Amen.
 

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Friday, October 7, 2016

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

1) The garden is closing down.  It's falling its natural instincts as the temperatures cool and days become shorter.  It was a good season.

2) Pixie had a great birthday.  She's an old lady now.  She's 12!

3) The trees look beautiful!  The colors that were covered up by the green are now showing. 

God is good.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

OK: Off topic again. It's been a beautiful day to make soap.

This is coconut oil soap still in liquid form.
It's cooking in my crockpot.
That's a faster way to make soap 
and let it cure.
When the soap cools, I will cut it immediately.
I didn't realize that if you don't cut the soap right away,
you might end up with one
HUGE
bar of soap.

It's still cooling, and as soon as it's solid,
I will cut the soap.

Next up will be a salt soap.
I've read that salt soap is really good for your skin.
We shall see.
The only thing is you need to increase the coconut oil by 70%.
That will be fun!

I started to make my own soaps 2 years ago.
I love these soaps!
I have dry skin, and, most of the time, I don't need to use lotion 
when I use these 
moisturizing bars.
Well, I'm at the bottom of my soap supply.
It's time to get the soap made before it's too cold to open my garage door.
The mixture of lye and water really smells.
You need good ventilation to make soap.
I've seen videos of people making soap in their kitchen.
I don't know how they do it.
The smell overwhelms me.
If you decide to make soap,
be very careful with the lye.

More later. 
I have to check the soap to see if it's  hard enough to cut.

More later.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Worth Repeating: The Journey - Taking the Wrong Way

We've all done it. We've gone the wrong way at some point in time. Sometimes we see the sign, and sometimes we don't. We've taken a left instead of a right, or we've taken a right instead of a left. We end up where we thought we weren't supposed to be, but then we find that, maybe, just maybe, we were supposed to be here all along. These turns and twists in the road cause my anxieties to elevate. When I get where I'm going, then I look back. It was where I was supposed to be. 

Have you ever done that? How do you feel when you take the wrong turn?

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

We Interrupt 31 Days of Writing about Polymer Clay to Say: Happy Birthday, Miss Pixie Marie!

"The Girl" is 12 years old today!
Happy Birthday, Miss Pixie Marie.
A gift from God,
His beautiful Hug,
Happy Birthday!
You'll get your cupcake later today!

Monday, October 3, 2016

Day #3 This Little Piggie Went to Market

I went on a "piggie" burst for a few days.
I made many different types of pigs.
They were really fun to make.

Last night, 
I thought I would make a few  more 
piggies,
and 
I did.
However, 
my piggies decided they didn't want to be piggies,
so
I made fish instead.
That's what happens sometimes when your muse gets going.
My muse wanted fish.
I wanted piggies.
The score:
Muse 1
Me 0.
It happens.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Day #2 Doodles Moving On

Of course I forgot to take a photo of the doodle sheet from which I made these pendants!
However,
I really thought it was a pretty sheet!

I was able to cut three very usable pendants from the sheet, and two that were 
ok.  

All  I need to do now is add a bit of shine to the pendants, and they will be ready.

Technique was the same. 
When the sheet was finished,
I covered the sheet with a piece of plastic wrap and cut out my pieces with cookie cutters to avoid sharp edges.

I'm looking forward to exploring more uses for the doodle sheets. 

Saturday, October 1, 2016

I Honestly Forgot About This Until I Received the Email

Of course, I am running behind
Already.
I didn't find a category that would cover my topic, 
so, you can find me under
Too Awesome to Categorzie
and
probably a little bit behind.
My plan, right now,
and
it's subject to change is to explore the world of 
polymer clay.

A Bit of My History with polymer clay.
I began to work with polymer clay about 4 or 5 years ago after it became apparent that I needed to keep my hands and mind very busy to pull myself out of a deep depression into which I had fallen.  My daughter had been diagnosed with an incurable cancer called multiple myeloma.  There were times when I would move in with her, for extended periods of time,  to help her out.  I couldn't take my glass studio along with me when I was with her, so after trying other types of art such as felting and jewelry, I began to explore the world of polymer clay.

Now...
I am  still busy with polymer clay.  My daughter is doing well, and she has moved in with me.  Experimentation and exploration are the words I would use to describe what I do with polymer clay.
Let's Talk Doodles

I've only recently begun to explore doodling with clay.  I am also exploring different types of mediums on which to put my clay.  I used a cardboard backing for this piece.  I plan to change things a bit with my doodles and see if there are some pendants in doodling.  I have a feeling there will be so, stay tuned.
In the Meantime

Here's how I made this particular doodle.  Oh, do you see the bird in it?  I began with a sheet of white clay that I put on a piece of corrugated cardboard.  I rolled out ropes of black clay in different thicknesses, and I simply began to doodle.  When I was finished, I pulled out the alcohol inks and dripped drops of inks onto the canvas.  I dabbed up the colors with a baby wipe.  When I was finished with this process, I baked this piece for 50 minutes.  I have one more step to complete this piece, and I'm not sure how I will accomplish the shine I think this needs.  
Again, stay tuned and welcome to my site.

And the One Accepted Was:

The Gals!

They were accepted into the art show beginning next week. 
I was there to pick up Fatima, and 
The Gals 
were already hanging on the wall.
I didn't win a cash prize, but that's all right.
To be in the company of the most amazing artists is a compliment.
Woooooo Hoooooo!

Friday, September 30, 2016

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way
1) See the picture on the left?  I entered "Fatima" and "The Gals" into a juried art show.   One, and, I don't know which one, was accepted.  I'll find out tonight when I go to pick up the "declined" project.

2) My knee surgery is rescheduled!!!!  

3)  My blood sugars are much more in control now than they were two weeks ago!  Yes!
 

 

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Yesterday was a Beautiful Fall Day

Last night, before I went to bed, I changed the sheets.
I crawled into my bed, with its clean sheets,
and 
it was wonderful!
There is nothing, no pleasure, like jumping into a bed with newly laundered sheets!
Absolutely, nothing!
I felt the movement of the sheets as I shifted my body to get comfortable enough in bed to read.
I thought of the time when I was young, and my mother put newly laundered sheets on my bed!
They were stiff.
They were uncomfortable, 
and
it took a few days for me to get used to them.
By then, it was time to wash the sheets again, and hang them outside to dry.  
Today, and ever since I was married and moved away from home, I continue to wash my sheets weekly, but I don't hang them out to dry.
I don't know.
I don't buy into the myth of sheets dried on the line.
You see the commercial where the wind is blowing, and the kids are playing, all the while, Mom, or in these days, Dad, is hanging the sheets on the line to dry.
That night, everyone has beautiful smelling, clean sheets.
Nope.  Not me.
I want to wash my sheets in a machine,  use my unscented fabric softener in the dryer.
I want my linens to be crisp, clean, and soft.
Wrinkles are all right.
The wrinkles come out quickly, but this myth of childhood, when things were "better," well, I'm not sure they were better, they were different.
Different is all right.
I still want machine dried sheets!
(PS: The Title has nothing to do with this blog post!)
(Insert a smile and a wink here!)

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Worth Repeating: The Leaves Are Gone

Sculptures,
living and strong.
Bare
Open
Naked
Ready for the rigors of winter.
Twisted,
Gnarled,
Reaching Beyond the Earth.
A sign from the grave of winter,
The sculptures will bud.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

5 Things I Learned About Life This Summer While Working in the Garden

1) Not every seed that's planted will grow, and even if all the seeds you plant grow, only the strongest ones will survive.  Not only do you have to grow, you have to be strong.

2) Many times, birds and other critters will try to steal the seeds you've planted and eat them.  You have to guard the parts of you that are growing so that someone who is destructive will not tear you down.

3) Water is to the growing plants like music is to the soul.  We must have that beauty to grow.  We must be nurtured, aka, watered frequently to grow and produce well.

4) When growing potatoes in a container, the best potatoes are the ones that are in the deepest parts of the container.   They are the most difficult to harvest, but they are the most delicious when harvested.

5) Gardeneing, like life, can be a dirty business.  You go out there clean, and, if you're doing it right, you come in dirty.  That's just the way life is.  If you want to live your life to the fullest, you have to get a little dirty.  Life is too short not to live with your heart and soul.


Monday, September 26, 2016

Random Thoughts on a Cloudy Day

I think I need more sleep.  I slept in, on Sunday, until almost 9 AM today.  (I went to Mass yesterday, so there was no need to set the alarm. )  I dragged around all day Sunday. I took a morning nap, too.  I guess I'm not sleeping enough.  That needs to change.

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I'm entering some of the "Gals" into a juried art show tomorrow.  They all have names now.  In frame #1, it's Felicity, Doris (pronounced Daw-ris), and Sabrina.
In the single frame, Fatima is her name.

I guess I have to get used to cloudy days again.  It is fall.  This will be interesting.  I'll be pulling out my Happy Lights.

My daughter is an amazing cook.  She makes a killer pasta and a tomato and potato soup, yes, she combines them, that are to die for, literally.  Wow!  If she writes these recipes down, I'll post them here, too.  The FB friends are waiting for them.  She makes her own pasta sauce from scratch.  Wow!

Fred, the cat, seems to be accepting that Pixie will be living with him now, and that she's a dog, not a cat.  Ok, Fred would rather she were a cat, but he thinks she's a very bad cat, as cats go.  So far, they cannot be friends.  Marvin, the cat, is more accepting.

The tomatoes have slowed down.  I think there is only one cucumber left on the wilted vines.  There might be a  couple of small pumpkins left there.  It was a great growing season!  The summer was perfect for the crops.  Next year we'll have even more crops to harvest!

My next random thought is:  Thank you for being a reader.  I'm not sure how many people read my posts, but thank you, if you do.

 

Friday, September 23, 2016

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.


1) I'm very pleased with "Never Kiss a Chicken."
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2) I'm feeling better.  I felt the side effects from my flu shot, but I'm much better now.  I'm very thankful that there is a flu shot available.  I've had the real influenza!

3) Yesterday was the first day of fall!
Yikes!  Where did summer go?

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Thoughts of Autumn

red leaves
yellow leaves
crunchy leaves
cooler weather
socks and sandals
light weight jackets
jeans
cool winds
rainy days
light frost
killing frost
dead leaves
gardens empty
leaves on the street
freezing rain
heaters
sweaters
short days
long nights
raking leaves
winter's coming
closing the woman cave
storing the garden tools
finding the snow shovel
putting away summer clothes
hanging up the winter clothes
sorting clothes for give away
wearing gloves
turning off the air conditioning
ordering seed catalogues
wishing it were spring

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Worth Repeating: Dear September

Dear September,

When I was a kid, I loved September!  September meant going back to school with new school supplies, notebooks, pencils, pens, cigar boxes for our school supplies, but most of all, a box of new crayons!

I can still smell the wax when I opened that box.  We could only bring a box of 24 crayons to school, so I looked forward to October, my birthday month, when I would probably get a new box of 64 crayons!  Isn't it odd, though, to think of you and think of the smell of wax when I opened my box of brand new crayons?

I also remember being hot in the early part of September.  It was then that I would smell the green chile  peppers roasting as everyone stocked up on the green and roasted the peppers to put away for winter.  The smell was heavenly!  The taste of those green peppers mixed with our food--beyond amazing!  I loved September for that reason!

Then, September, you began to cool off a bit.  Everyone breathed a sigh of relief as windows were left open and the "swamp coolers" turned off.  You were really lucky if you had a swamp cooler!  Because of the dry air, your air conditioner would put water into the air of your home and cool it off.
You didn't run your swamp cooler a lot because of the expensive electricity, but there were times when you were cool.  You could sit and read inside and still be cool.

In the meantime, leaves were falling off the trees and drying.  I remember jumping up and down in the leaves just to hear them crunch.  Coming home from school, we'd all march in the leaves and come home with miniscule pieces of dried leaves clinging to our socks and filling our shoes.

September, you were a fun month when I was kid.  Even now, I am beginning to see leaves turning yellow.  I see gardens that are mature.  I see fresh produce from family gardens.  Sometimes, I'm even given a bit of fruit from a tree or vegetables from a garden.  Now, we bypass the heat and humidity.  We put on our light weight jackets when we go out.  We begin to harvest what we have sown this summer.  Yes, September, I miss summer, but I do welcome you with fond memories and expectations of the cold winter days ahead.   I'll be looking for a new winter coat this year.  September is a good month to buy a new coat.  There are a lot of sales right now.  September, you're finally here, and now, I'm off to enjoy you.

PS:: Don't tell anyone, but I still jump in piles of leaves when I can.  I also buy a new box of 64 crayons in September.  Shhhhhhhhhhh!  That's our secret, September.  Shhhhhhhhh!
 

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Thoughts about Tuesday

If Tuesday were a place,Tuesday would be an ordinary place.  Monday is extraordinary because Monday begins he week.    Tuesday is just Tuesday because it follows Monday.  Like the middle child, Tuesday's place is set in the week and often neglected because it’s the day after Monday. 

For most people, Tuesday is a workday.  We have passed Monday, and we are headed to the weekend, but we are still a long way from that weekend on Tuesday.  Meh.  It’s Tuesday.

If Tuesday were a city,  Tuesday would be dull.  People who lived in Tuesday would all look like someone who could not be picked out of a line up because their faces were very much the same.  Their houses would be plain, not exciting.  Their children would live in Tuesday World, and they'd never know a Monday or any other day except for Friday, because on Friday, even though the people would be grateful,  their lives would be stuck in Tuesday.

I am so grateful that I don't live in Tuesday.  Tuesday is not extraordinary. Wait, I think I do!

Monday, September 19, 2016

It finally Realized...

a blog post doesn't have to be long to be a blog post.
So, in order to write on a regular basis again,
I plan to write
simple,
short 
posts
especially when I feel overwhelmed like now.
Summer has drifted into fall,
and
I didn't realize it.
Suddenly,
the temperatures were cooling
and
leaves have begun to fall.
I've been digging sweet potatoes
and 
regular potatoes, 
and
I missed the change.
Feeling overwhelmed is dreadful, especially when you miss the beauty of life.
The fog appears to be lifting.  
I hope so.
If you can,
whisper a quiet prayer for me. 
I know it would help.
Thank you.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.



1) Soon, the frost will be on the pumpkin.  The days are growing shorter.  The temperatures are cooling down a bit.  We are headed towards autumn!  September is here!


2) My walking sticks are almost finished!  I'm now in the process of varnishing them.  Two more coats, and they will be ready to use!  I'll show pictures next week.

3) The garden is still producing.  We are enjoying the fruits of the garden!  Tomatoes, kale, cucumbers.  Nummy!  Soon!  Pumpkins!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

August Melts into September

The seasons change again.
August has melted into September
like the wicked witch of the west
melted when the misguided 
bucket of water hit her.
"I'm melting!  I'm melting," she cried.
So, August is over and September has begun.

What do I think of you, Dear September?
I think I love you!
The heat will cool.
The air conditioner will be shut off.
The windows will be open again,
and fresh air will fill the house.

The first frost will tip toe into the air.
Unless it's a killing frost, the pumpkins will not sweeten up.
The vines will die, and the harvest will begin.
On many nights, we'll cover the surviving plants until the evenings are so cold that nothing will save the vines from death.
The good news is that the harvest will be ready.
We'll have potatoes, pumpkins, and what's left of the tomatoes will be on the window sills ripening.

We'll pull out our sweatshirts and light weight sweaters and jackets.
Jeans are so comfortable,
unless the hangars have shrunk the jeans  again.

September, you will lead us into October which brings us closer to winter.
Leaves will be blown into bags.
We'll celebrate a cool, warm day!
That's one of the benefits of autumn.

I think of the ancient ones who walked or rode horses where we now have streets.
Oh, September, I'm anxious to embrace you as I loosen my hold on August.
Let's dance until it's too cold to move.
Now, I'll love you!!!!
 

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Worth Repeating: Enhancing Your Creative Gifts

Creativity is a gift, and everyone has this gift.  How we manifest that gift is unique.  For some, creativity is expressed in writing, drawing, or hands on work such as with glass or clay.  For others, creativity is expressed by making unique pieces of jewelry or sculpture.  For others, creativity is expressed in cooking, cleaning or organizing.  Yes, creativity is expressed in these ways too.  Decoration is my downfall, yet, when you walk into my neighbor's home, you see her creativity expressed by the framed photos on the walls, the flowers in the vases, and the colors in her kitchen.  My neighborhood is full of creative people.  My next door neighbor has a unique gift for gardening, and I do love her garden!  She has made our neighborhood much more beautiful with her creativity!
It doesn't matter how our gifts of creativity are expressed, the part of our brains which blesses us with the creative flow still needs to be nurtured and worked.  Creativity is a process.  Like a flowing stream, with all the swirls and pools, creativity needs to developed, because if the flow of water (creativity) dries up, a stagnant pool develops.
So, how do we do this, knowing, that at times our Muse is on vacation in Hawaii, and we are not.  The first thing we need to do is to accept that, at times, the creative flow will be slow or non existent.  This just happens.  Acceptance works wonders.  The next thing we need to do is to begin to lovingly  nurture the bits and pieces of creativity we know is still there.  You can't force the Muse's return, but you can gently urge her back.
How do we peel away the layers to our creative brains and open the door for creativity to flow again.  Luckily, there are a lot of things we can do.
Stop struggling and take a break.  I have been off my torch for almost 2 months now.  I am finally  beginning to feel the urge to light that baby up and make beads again.  It's been a long time since I have felt this way
Try something new!  I have been working with polymer clay, fibers, and wire during this self imposed hiatus.  I have also been working at organizing my home.  That has been drawing out my creative muse.  I think she wants to get back to glass!  She doesn't like organizing
I have been writing, too, much more than I have in a long time.  Writing exercises my brain, and helps to draw out my thoughts, sometimes, thoughts I had hidden away
Look at life through a different lens.  Now instead of resistance to many things, I say, "Why not?"  Acceptance of things we can't change is amazing.
Exercises that stimulate the brain also help.  One of my favorite exercises during this hiatus has become listing.  I am not one to make an art journal of lists, although, I have seen some beautiful art journals of lists.  I simply hand write or use my phone or Ipad to make lists.  They are simple, minimalist, and, yet, they are effective
One of my favorite writers of the past, Erma Bombeck once wrote, "I list, therefore, I am."  I think she's right.  In many ways, we are our lists: our lives, our likes, our dislikes, our hopes, our thoughts, our to do's, our yesterdays, our tomorrows.  And, listing can stimulate the brain to open up, to allow the creative juices to warm up and flow.  
So, I have an assignment for you.  I want you to begin to list, and to list often.  You can make a list journal or, like me, use the plain and simple for listing.  The goal is to list and list often.  You don't have to spend a lot time listing, or you can.  It's up to you.  All I ask is that you take the time to enjoy what you list.  An easy way to get started is to try this assignment.  Set the timer for  five to ten minutes.  In that time, free yourself up for this gentle exercise of listing.  If the phone rings, don't answer it.  Let your writing flow during that time.  If it doesn't, don't sweat it.  Enjoy the time you have to list.
Are you ready?  Here's your first assignment.  In these next few minutes, make a list of all the words you can think of beginning with the letter A.  That's it.  Then, for the next 24 days go through the alphabet making lists, and you are on your way!  You will find that the creative juices are flowing, maybe in ways you didn't expect.  The journey begins with one step.  This is your first step.  
The letter A.
Let me know how this works for you.  I'd love to hear.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

The Gals

What about your friends?
I mean your real friends.
The ones you do things with or not.
The ones who, if you don't see each other for years, can take up the conversation you were having when you saw each other last.
You know, those friends.

I've been having fun with my new friends.
I call them 
"The Gals."
I'm going to enter some of them in a juried art show soon.
We'll see if they are accepted or not.
Either way, I really like them.

This is Fatima.
I had totally different ideas when I started conditioning the clay,
but
Fatima wanted to be born,
Her birth was easy, and it was faster than I expected.
I love her.
I hope the jurors of the show like her, too.


These are some of The Gals.
So far, only the Gal in the middle has a name.
She has been named
Doris
pronounced "Daw-ris."
She's had a rough life, and she has some health issues.
She either had a stroke or has Bells Palsy.  She's feeling better, but she's been tried by life and has come up with a big smile on her face.

I don't know what to call the other two "Gals."
Do you have any suggestions?
I'd appreciate the help.