Friday, November 30, 2007

Happy Friday..... And a WIP

Okay, so we will be inconvenienced by the well issue. However, one inconvenience has been offset by a huge convenience factor. Mom lives alone. She is tickled pink that she is going to see us so much. And HERE is the huge convenience ----- she has told me that if I will bring a load of laundry everynight - she will add her few things to it and have it ready the next night - dry and folded. Just how dang cool is that. I bought a bottle of laundry detergent and hauled a basket to Royston - oh yeah, call me lots of things but stupid is not one of them. We will pay the increase in her water bill for this convenience. Cheaper than a laundromat and definitely cheaper than a maid.

Recovery news - I rested really well last night - more like crashed and burned - but I needed it. Today - I feel almost back to normal but without the lethargy and fog from the medications I have been on for years. I have a tiny bit of discomfort. But nothing significant. I have a beanie hat to finish this afternoon and it is a stunning day. It is also my last 1/2 day of work - back to full reality next week - this afternoon I may sit in the porch swing and finish this hat before taking off to a basketball game.

Tomorrow will find me working on the piecing for this little lovely.

While Charles was building walls in the barn, I was doing the same on fabric. Another UWIH item as well. Those long lines in the background are designed to be boards. I will handwash this tonight and pin it out for blocking. I have the fabric selected for the rest of the item. You won't find the finished one here, but I will post it over at CIP when I finish, this is one of the projects I listed for my Sister over there.

Tonight - I'll just be stamping and gluing tags and cards and such for the CIP packages.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

The well is dry....

Literally. last night Abby drew the short straw. We have a bored well. For you city girls that means nothing, but for us rural folks - we rely on our well. The south is in a drought right now and we are officially out of water at our house. Tonight - Charles and Molly will shower at his office - Abby and I will go to my Mom's. We loaded the truck with coolers of water this morning at the church and will use that for flushing and face washing and tooth brushing. I will hand wash what few dishes have to be and my children will become familiar with the cultural phenomena called the laundromat.

The plumbers seem to think we can limp along until the spring. We will try and put back money for a new well - just in case. The well recovered but there is just not much water there at all. So we will join the ranks of those who are strict about conservation.

Now on to more fun things.

Look carefully - that is my dining room floor and yes those are sparkles - teeny bits of white glitter. Right next to the island between the living and dining rooms. I just had to have this picture before I cleaned it up.

How did the glitter get there? Inquiring minds might want to know. Well the glitter was in this bowl it was being sprinkled on things and obviously I am just not as tidy with it as I would like to be. When ever I work with glitter it winds up everywhere. Including on me. I just tell people that it's the good fairy coming out.

What was I sprinkling the aformentioned glitter on? Well ----- sticks of course. Sticks that have been spray painted silver. So far in this process I am USING WHAT I HAVE.

Here is where UWIH ended. Those red birds - I had to have them to complete the project. So I bought them and spent - 3 dollars and 21 cents. Not too bad. They were inexpensive, but they didn't have wires on them - so I improvised. Stuck a hole in the bottom with a toothpick - hot glued pieces of pipe cleaners.

Night before last I had crocheted and crocheted, using up some scrap yarn I had. 6 rows - quick and simple - round and round.



really cute little birdies on their nests.

What cha think ya'll?????

Have a wonderful day ---- Teresa

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


I love scrolling through my camera after the monsters have an impromptu photo session of their own. These are fun - candid - true to life photos of them. Sure they are staged, but by them and for them. Also they edit and delete and redo over and over until they are happy with them.

I present - the Atkinson' top models - latest and greatest shots.

Molly B - in her homecoming dance dress. I cannot believe she is a senior in high school.

The softball player - Miss Abby - this was taken by big sis in my truck. I know my name is mom, but doesn't she have the most stunning and soulful eyes. I cannot believe she is in high school.

Now more accomplishments - using what I had. Sorry to say I broke that yesterday to a tune of 3.21 at the florist for some red birds. More on that project later.

I found that crochet was easy to pick up and down through the recovery. You have seen Molly's hat. Well - I have made many of these - including a black one for local best friend. I had to frog it several times because it needed to be fit OVER a golf cap. (I left a slit in the front for the bill of the hat to go through). I have made a total of 11 of these. They really are quick and easy to do.

These two are a bright orange novelty yarn and there is a sibling version of this in a white that I finished yesterday morning. These will be Christmas gifts for kids on my CIP project list.

If you wish to stop reading now - its okay - the next few lines are for me - about me - and designed only to help others who might be struggling with some of this themselves.

My surgery has not been a traumatic issue for me. Minimal discomfort. Minimal inconvenience. Over the last several days I have pondered a few things. One - I am FAT - Years of medications to prevent a recurrance of cancer risks - bad eating decisions - a lifestyle that allows me lots of sitting time - all added up to many extra pounds. I felt bad and I looked bad. Overweight is unhealthy. Then I started having issues with my cycle - sometimes next to nothing - sometimes a gushing flood. I have often thought the excess was because I was fat. I felt old and betrayed by my body. I lost my "fun" and I lost the feeling of sexy. I never knew when I might spot or worse. All of this was so gradual that there was no alarm bell that said - "there is a problem here. "

Over the last several years, I have destroyed so many mental health demons. I now feel so much better about every decision I have ever made. I understand why and why they were good or bad decisions. So I felt qualified to make this surgery decison without any qualms.

I was warned about depression - no more children. That wasn't an issue for me at all and as it turns out has been an unnessary warning. I am not afraid of the cancer recurrance any longer. I'll just deal with it if needed. I will no longer be taking any drugs. AND on Sunday night I found myself dancing. Not dancing with someone or for someone, just dancing because it felt good to do so. Even though I am still uncomfortable and recovering, my body feels better. I feel strong. I feel back in control. I felt like moving to the beat of some song on the radio - just like I used to. We were painting backdrops at the church. I was in grungy clothes. The radio was playing - kids were everywhere - and Miss Teresa was singing and dancing - completely unaware and not caring who was watching. For the first time in a long time - I danced - for me.

People - I write this for me - to celebrate that moment - to remember it. But also to tell you - that no matter where you are in your life. Make sure that you are keeping up with your medical checks. Examine your mental health. The way you feel could have a medical basis or be related to how you eat or exercise. Maybe a medication is bringing you down. The tumour they removed from me was almost twenty ounces and the medication I took contributed to the agressive growth of the tumour. Your mental outlook is just as important. There may be a medical basis for how you feel there too, but regret over decisions, trauma, fear, and esteem issues are all possible too. Know as much as you can about your medications. Eat healthy - exercise - keep up with your check ups - do something fun for you everyday.

Life is far too precious to let it waste with negative thoughts. I am so happy that my "magic" seems to be returning. I'll be the one dancing and belting out a song. If you see me, I hope you will join me - but don't wait for someone to dance with. Feel your body - free your mind. You won't regret it.

Have a wonderful day --- Teresa

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

What a mess......

What in the world is Molly frowning about? Cleaning up a mess that I made - that's what. I was gathering supplies for painting at church on Sunday afternoon and I knocked a big bottle of bright blue glitter glue off the top shelf.

Now the bottles are plastic - right - but still it hit just right and the bottle shattered into about 12 pieces and splatted bright blue glitter all over those 120 year old floors. FYI - I cleaned it up - Molly had me stage this picture. Any ideas about getting blue glitter glue out of the cracks in the floor? Don't examine the picture too carefully you'll see part of the mess that is normally behind closed doors.

Went back to the doctor yesterday. I am doing quite well compared to the other patient who was there. We did preop together and her surgery was immediately after mine on Wednesday. She is still taking all the major pain meds all day and is having issues - she told me she had called the office almost everyday with a problem/complaint. I left there wondering if my case is unusual or is it hers that is the unusual one.

I'll be working until lunch this week and back to normal next week. I really didn't realize how tired I was, but once I got home and stretched out, I was gone. I slept for 3 and 1/2 hours -completely zonked. I never heard the girls or Charles come in. Apparently Molly thought the drop of drool hanging off my chin was funny.

I promised pictures of some accomplishments - I will space them out over the next few days. One of Abby's friends is getting a new baby sister soon and while we are not really close to them, we wanted to give them a little something. I had time to sit still and had the materials on hand to make a crochet edged blanket.

I modified some instructions I found via Dawn's 4:53 blog. The result is this lovely ruffled edging. I love how this looks - ruffley, flirty, feminine. This project added to the UWIH fund as well.

I hope this finds all of you having a wonderful day.

See you tomorrow - Teresa

Monday, November 26, 2007

Building Walls

Building walls is often a bad thing. Walls of fear. Walls of mistrust. Walls of anger. Dead end walls. Any of those kinds of walls are bad things.

Some walls are very good things. The wall of protection that parents try and provide for children. The wall of committment that a couple should have to protect their bond.

Then there are the "real" walls. Those that make a house and those that make up the building I work in. Those that make the church building and retail spaces. Real walls - required walls - necessary walls. For protections from the outside elements, for security, for sanctuary.

It just so happens, we tore out a few of the walls that made up our house. This house is old and had been built onto several times. Being the "packrat" that I am and knowing that we had buildings and barns on the property, I requested (made) the man keep most of the wood we tore out. Just look......

100 year old heart pine. We even saved the funeral parlor shelf (another post) and the mantles from the fireplace (both of those went back in too). We kept doors and windows too. We even kept an old closet thingy that was built in the corner of the dining room - it may reappear as well.

Anyway - with a female at your address who saves everything - and who is trying to USE WHAT SHE HAS - and who is trying to build a studio without borrowing money - what is the man at that address to do? Well - of course he gets to build a wall.

This is the back wall of MaggieGrace studios. This will all be painted basic white. I am thinking about the atmosphere that is MagnoliaPearl. I am not worried about the gaps - it is all insulated. We will cover as much of the walls as we can with this wood, then try and round up a little more from somewhere - or just add to it with new wood. I have to say I am tickled pink about how this looks.

Once I am released for lifting and real work, I will begin the paint process. Isn't it wonderful that KILZ now comes in a latex version. I really cannot wait - this is looking like it will be a reality and that is so very exciting.

I am back at work - at least 1/2 day today - the pile on the desk was not too bad. Parts of it were interesting. What they were unable to find - etc! Some of it was simply left undone - not necessarily a bad thing. Today I am simply trying to figure out where to restart. To the doctor this afternoon - then home.

Hope you all are having a great day. I am.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Happy Friday

My free wheeling time is almost gone. Thankfully - I feel quite able to return to work on Monday - although it will be only 1/2 day segments I think.

Is there anything better than that full feeling after a Thanksgiving meal. We had bunches of food and family stories. Visited with my inlaws - lying on the sofa afterwards - while "the boys" loaded some stuff to haul off today on the truck. Lovely day.

Headed into the weekend at full blast. Hope you guys are having a great afternoon.

We are.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Wednesday - a really long week

Today is one week post surgery - I really have progressed well. I can drive today per the doc and the plan with that new freedom is to go to the grocery store tonite for dessert makings. Charles and the monsters have concessions at the ballgame. I still have a knot and residual soreness on my lower left side, but it is completely manageable with ibuprophen.

It's 11.30 and my youngest sleeping beauty just got up. The restful quiet of the day will soon be broken with their voices.

Charles chose to stay home today and do some work on the studio. Pictures to post next week. I am sitting in a chair out there "supervising". Actually I am constructing on my sister's Christmas gift. (photo next week there too.) I go back to work 1/2 day Monday and probably Tuesday. The days of remaining in my pj's are rapidly coming to an end.

Thanksgiving is upon us and we will spend tomorrow afternoon with his folks. Lots of his folks. It is always a good time and we enjoy the loud and rowdy crowd that they are.

I will be glad to have all of this behind me. Every day finds me stronger and in less discomfort.

I have the Christmas lists started and can attack those now that I will be back to myself. While I will not be taking the "handmade" pledge, I am trying to use more handmade articles for this year. I will be diligently working on CIP mailers. I really want this last mailer of the project to have some special goodies in it and I want to mail these by the 1st of December.

Have a wonderful day


Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Local Best Friend - Laughs, Bad Jokes, Fun

Local best Friend brought lunch yesterday. We laughed and joked and teased mercilessly. Last he saw of me was in the hospital hooked up to various stuff and wearing those lovely fashion items like a hospital gown and those white leg things. He wanted to see the house.

Now - the girls made it public friendly - which means they piled every extraneous thing in my bedroom and closed the door. So now he has even seen that dirty little secret. Keep in mind this man is always pressed, shoes polished, golfer guy. Can tie a single or double windsor without a mirror. A true gentleman through and through. I am quite comfy stepping over the pile of shoes at the foot of the bed. My idea of ironing is to toss things in the dryer with a wet towel. I would much rather focus on my girlies and my crafts than worry too much about cleaning. Total opposites. (But he does have a Brenda and I don't - that would be his maid)

But true friendship has evolved through the differences. We have very similar approaches in our work. We both value our family very much. We make great sounding boards for each other. We have worked together. Now we don't - but keeping in touch is effortless. We pick up right where we left off any time there is a break in keeping up. We both have very strong faith statements. There is no petty competition between us. Neither of us carry grudges. It is easy to be together. We can be riotously funny, but even silence is acceptable. He knows all my ugly - I know most of his - and it just doesn't matter. He is older than I am and has forgotten many things he has done - you know that happens when you pass 50. He loves my girls and supports them so much. He is probably the most faithful MaggieGrace reader out there. Most of all - he is an encourager - not just for me - but for so many - and in so many ways. He truely wants every one to be the best person they can. I am fortunate to have him as my friend.

Today is a low key day. I am trying to finish the edging on a baby blanket. That tiny bedspread cotton is tedious to work with. But I am almost there. Then I will be working on CIP goodies.

Thanksgiving week - I am thankful for my health and recovery and for all of my friends. We have so much to be thankful for and this week I can focus on that because I am still and quiet.

Have a wonderful day.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Happy Monday

Tried it with no pain meds last night. Did not sleep well, but not uncomfortable enough to get up and take something. Just restless. I got up and saw everyone off this morning. I am listening ladies, the front porch still needs sweeping. But the craft room looks a LOT better. I need the table space, so I have piddled around getting things put away.

I am sorting and labeling and stacking etc. I will be making butterflies later today and maybe some stamp work for Christmas goodies. Tally on beanie hats for yesterday - 3 - that's 1.50 in the UWIH money box.

I really don't feel bad at all today. It is a stunning fall day too. All the doors are open and I am enjoying the sounds of Mr. Tal blowing leaves and such. He is elderly and just gets outside and putters around. He and his wonderful wife have a beautiful home and yard - I hate how the drought has browned the grass. We bought our house from them - it was his childhood home - and we have made it our home as well.

I have had time to study these walls a lot in the last few days. Photo's of family - UGA and music memorabilia. My stuff - the girls' stuff - the man's stuff. All a hodgepodge of us. Bitty reminders of people shown in a print tray. The hole in the sofa where Molly sits. Magazines. Abby's tray alongside the couch where she lays to eat. A shabby (really) table from my Nanny's house. Various cover for each of us (seems we cover up even in the summer). We live here. We love here. We fight here. We survive here. This is no showplace - life is way too important to us to keep one of those. I see Abby's ball shoes from the sofa. I see Molly's college apps from here too. Charles coat hangs on the door of the tv cabinet. My crocheting piled in the middle of the sofa. All reminders of what I am thankful for this holiday. My girls are growing up with a Mom and a Dad. My girls are important to us. My family is - his family is. Friends are welcome and the true friends really know I am a slob.

Or am I? I really would rather spend time supporting my girls than dusting and cleaning. I see absolutely nothing wrong with that. Will they remember with more affection that the beds were always made or that one of us was at every ballgame. Will they pass on to their kids that school projects on the dining room table are more important than keeping a fresh centerpiece there?

Just some things I am pondering as I bring a little order to the space. Gotta run - the dining room table is almost clear.

Have a wonderful Monday.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Sunday Night

It has been a good day. Off to a rocky start - seems the man at my address did not understand the phrase "I'm getting up to get ready for church, it will take me a little longer today." See in my interpretation that meant I wanted to go to church. It meant I felt good enough to go to church. The part I failed to clear up - I can't drive yet so he had to drive me to church. So at 8:30 when we need to leave, I find him still snoozing under the covers. I am tired, ever so slightly frustrated, and feel incredible burdonsome and underappreciated. Needless to say, the devil showed up early at my house and the fight he brought was ugly and tearful. But every thing improved afterwards.

I tried to add a picture, but dial up just will not cooperate. Today has brought more energy and productivity. That feels better. I will be alone tomorrow, seems everyone thinks I can be trusted to do as I should. The only plan I have is to try and sweep the front porch. I have been awake most of the day so I should sleep.

A few details of the surgery - no stitches - I have been superglued shut. The pain feels like I did a few hundred too many situps. Late afternoon leaves me looking several months pregnant (a look that I didn't carry well even when I was pregnant.) I have taken percocet at night but only for the bliss of the sleepy feeling. Motrin handles the pain just fine. And damn my belly button itches. The leftover gas from the surgery process feels like an alien may erupt at anytime - and since it is trapped in non-exit areas it just rumbles around.

I am working on CIP goodies. I have made three beannie hats. I would love to go sit in my favorite coffee shop and just enjoy watching people. Maybe Wednesday morning - doc said I could drive after a week. I feel much better than I expected, although I am taking Darla's advicve and staying in my jammies. Maybe I can eek out a few more days of pity.

Have a great evening.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Yesterday I felt great - today I don't

I think I overdid some things yesterday. Today I am tired and frustrated. Not nearly as sore, but deep down tired. There are tears wavering just below the surface (hormones leaving my body) that I just can't get a grip on. I can't focus on anything at all. I am fine by myself, but everyone wants to hover.

I really want to get out and go to some friends 50th anniversary party, but I am not sure if I should. I do know that there is no way I can spend another day on the sofa. Guess what - I am not a good patient at all. Never have been.

I am physically doing incredibly well. Just a little soreness here and there. It's the frustration of being cooped up that drives me nuts.

Mom and I washed miles of vintage lace by hand yesterday and bundled it up to sell. I'll try to get it posted so you guys can look at it. It has been ironed and starched and I have kept a little of it just for me. Mom washed and rinsed and I sat on the sofa and ironed. It felt good to be productive and to see the results at the end of the day.

Today, I am trying to finish a couple of hats for gifts and to get my Christmas list complete.

See now I have goals and I already feel better.

Have a great day.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Home .........

We are home. A bit tired and very sore. Just where did the truck go that hit me? Not as bad as I thought I might be.

I do have to say, the hospital is no place to go for rest. I have restrictions on my activities for the next few days, but I do have to walk and rest. Mom will be here tomorrow and we will probably walk around the yard some. I have spent the afternoon on the sofa and I missed Martha - slept right through. Did anyone see AnnaMaria Horner on today's show?

I am coherent, the most pain med I have taken is at night and I took one percocet last night. Other than that only IV motrin and several things for the nausea that anthesia gives me. Non of which worked. LBF stopped by at the hospital, he may no longer be the friend after seeing that picture. Thanks for everyone who has checked in here. Stopped by the hospital. Called. Thanks for the prayers and best wishes too.

Back to the sofa for more rest. The tired feeling is overwhelming. Be glad when most of that is gone.

Have a great evening.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


This is "Mother" Teresa's daughter, Molly. She probably mentioned me before in previous posts...(see Batman photograph/Assassination of Henry IV for reference). She has forced me to post on her behalf today. The surgery went well, and my mom is now resting. She'll have to stay overnight, but I promise she'll be back and blogging by tomorrow!


Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Flowers in the garden of my life....

When I had my lumpectomy, I felt so alone. I had friends. I had family. I had a church, but I was only minimally involved. My husband - as of today - has never spoken to me using the word cancer and survivor. I felt alone and afraid. But I fought my way through all of it. Today this finds me a stronger person.

My faith is stronger. I "plugged into" the lifeline offered all of us through Christ and the fellowship of His family. I am personally stronger. Able to push away negative thoughts more effectively. My understanding of gratitude and blessings much broader. I have eliminated "deadwood" friends and brought into my circle a much more diverse group of people who think more along the lines I do. In other words I have grown.

I have grown to realize that I have no time for negative influences in my life. I am who I am and I want to be surrounded by those who love me for all that. I have no need for being brought down - actually I guard against that effect with every ounce of energy I can. In addition, I try my best to always look for reasons to be positive and grateful and to let everyone know that.

So today I am celebrating the flowers in my garden - by sending you a virtual bloom. You readers out there in the blogosphere are so important to me. The family and friends I am celebrating too. Here's your stunning beauty of a floral display.

I told local best friend this morning that I feel surrounded and supported by prayer and positive notes today. Since this is the way I communicate with my blog friends - I want to say thanks so much for your support, prayers, best wishes and encouragement. Not just about my surgery, but about so much I have shared here.

I leave you for the next few days in the hands of some guest bloggers. As I recover, there will be posts without pictures - it takes forever at home to load photos - but I'll be in and out and I'll be reading and checking in on you guys.

Take a look below at some of my biggest supporters. This is part of my extended family at Jones Chapel UMC.

Have a wonderful next few days.

Added after a phone call - please remember Ashlee Mealor. She is on Abby's softball team and was involved in a car accident last night. As of now she is at Scottish Rite hospital in Atlanta with a broken back - and PLEASE remind your teenage drivers that they are not immortal - that seatbelts are important - that speed is totally unnecessary - that being careful should be a way of life. This is the third accident in as many days involving friends of my children and my heart is broken for family and friends. to Pam and Don - I am praying for you and for Ash.

Monday, November 12, 2007

My creation

I have no pictures from my weekend, so I give you a FLICKr mosaic made from my favorites. I did crochet a tremendous amount - another beanie hat - and a ruffled edging started on a baby blanket. Lots of good stuff, just no pictures. I also added another 75 cents to the UWIH box.

We had a tough weekend emotionally, a classmate of my girls was killed in an accident on Saturday night. Losing a teenager like this is always difficult. As of right now all of the details are unavailable, but details or not - parents and friends and relatives are mourning the loss. One of my customers committed suicide on Friday as well. Just a tough weekend.

I am off to do preop this morning. Detail meeting with the boss on Tuesday. Then happy trails for the princess. I am just really ready to be on the other side of this. The paperwork pile is down to just a few folders - and I have one appointment late this afternoon.

Molly spent time Saturday making the house "public presentable" - definition - she hauled all the junk to my bedroom and closed the door. Charles is home today - hopefully working on the studio. I have a meeting tonight so I will be late getting home. Then pack a bag and get ready for Wednesday morning.

I hope all of you have a wonderful day. Take a look at the picture below. What do you think of all these images?? I am particularly fond of the scrap nest.

My creation
Originally uploaded by maggiegracecreates
todays mosaic

Friday, November 09, 2007

Please don't be jealous

MaryAnn - I am sorry if I embarassed you. I really want to come and play at your house. And I want to have a wonderful party and all of us sit in my studio and play (this will include margaritas and sweet tea.)

Now about the title - looking at all of the glass storage in previous posts - it is obvious that I like glass things too.

Tracey - my little sister - is in the process of cleaning out the house her in-laws lived in. She sent a huge shelf for the barn and sitting in the shelf was a box. None of this is expensive stuff but I will be using these for storage and prettiness in my world. Just look what was in the box. Most importantly--- the word of the day is "FREE"

I haven't even cleaned these up. This is exciting for me. I have favorites - the turquoise blue in the back and the teeny little cut glass dish (just behind the brown vase) that has a bird on the top. The tall skinny bottle will be cleaned up and lace and bits added (Curious Sofa Style). I'm thinking this will be a goodie for a friend.

Molly made the travel volleyball team and Abby made the high school basketball team. Our life continues at breakneck speed. There are meetings and job assignments and team mom duties to contend with and here I will be laid up recovering. I want to thank all of the local friends who are picking up the slack for me. Please don't volunteer me for the junk crap just cause I'm not there to defend myself - LOL.

Am I ever gonna inhabit that studio? I am incredibly impatient now. I have storage pieces ready to hang and shelve. I have boxes at the ready for yarn and fabric. But the vow was to do this without borrowing money and I will accomplish that. I get so overwhelmed with the feeling of debt and looking at how much college will cost. I really have no idea how this is going to be accomplished. And the man at my address just will not discuss any kind of plan. Apparently he is quite comfy just coasting along.

Things at work are almost under control. I have one more major work day. TODAY. Monday I will be out for a large portion with preop stuff and Tuesday -I'll be going over everything with the boss. I am really just ready for this to be over and done with.

Ball tournament tomorrow and Sunday. I'll go tomorrow and then be home on Sunday because of Sunday School and Youth play practice.

I hope all of you have a fantastic weekend. See ya Monday.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Buttons, beads, and pretties

Gonna start by saying thank you Elizabeth for that wonderful closet tale comment to yesterday's post. I don't iron either - toss most clothes in the dryer with a damp towel and they are good to go. Thank you Junking in Georgia - the green house story is just so male typical. And if you haven't met Mrs. G you really should -hilarity abounds - a personal favorite is hiding away the "machinery" for the party. Thank you all for reading - thank you each and every one for the comments. I had no idea what wonderful people I would meet here. Thank you all so much.

So Miss Vallen has a thing for buttons and stuff. MaryAnn has a thing for lots of stuff. There are other who have "things" they are drawn too. I love to look at the studio pictures and the pretty organized pool pictures over at FLICKR. Now the studio is beginning to resemble a habitable space and I am really thinking how darn much trouble it is going to be to move all my crap. I'll be sharing some of these dirty little collections over the next few days. It sure will be more fun to show them off when the studio is ready.

This is a shot of the top of the craft cabinet right now. Those horizontal bottles are my favorites - these are storing beads and buttons. Yes the green vase is full of buttons and yes it is the size that a dozen roses come in - this is only a small sampling of the button and bead stash too.

Add to it my mom just told me she has 6 gallons jars for me to go through at her house.

All of those lab bottles have been thrifted or found or bought at surplus auctions etc. There are tons of jars and odd containers. around - because that's one of my things.

A closeup of butterfly makings. Sitting on the kitchen counter. The big canister is full of those 1/2 marbles and more buttons in their jars. The box with the "t" on top is my UWIH money box.

I read something yesterday that I have been pondering - this is something I have struggled with for years and this quote centered it for me perfectly. The quote Expectations are premature disappointments. I have unrealistic expectations of myself (and others) at times. Mostly of myself. I have a hard time giving up control because I am sure that if I do, something will be screwed up. That is why getting ready for being gone is so stressful for me. I go over and over the folders. I make list after list. I'll copy the list I give the boss, just in case I need to remember something - or he calls me with a question. I cannot let go -- EVER. I know this is something I need to work on - so I'll try to relax and rest after the surgery.

I do have several things planned to take my mind off of work. There are some beanie caps, and a cross stitch piece for my aunt, one for my cousin, and hopefully some easy CIP work. I have the sofa ready to be my throne for the week. There are blankies and pillows awaiting. The laptop will be ready for blog reading - I have a hard time posting from home - still dial up. But I may align a couple of guest blogs. And if the connection cooperates I'll be here some. Also - my mom will be with me some.

Have a wonderful day.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Overheard at my house.....

The pictures have absolutely nothing to do with the post. They are just a few blurbs of fun storage at my house. This is a wire plant holder with screen wire mesh. I made it years and years ago. It sits in the bathroom and we store all of our earrings on it. Just makes it easy to keep up with them. All three of us girls use it. It is one of the few things we share. If you have sent earrings to me - look carefully you may see them here.

Back to the title of my post. Let me just share the kinds of conversations that go on at my house. Last night Abby had late practice. When she got home she was eating dinner on the sofa. Molly is sitting and working on homework. All of a sudden Molly gasps and makes the most disgusting of noises. Seems Abby had enlightened the atmosphere. This conversation follows.

Abby - I think something is wrong with me.

Molly - I think so too. That's awful - what do you think is wrong.

Abby - I don't know but my farts don't make noise.

Molly - Oh but they certainly make odor. Smells like something crawled up in you and died.

How can you have a bad night when this is the beginning of your evening together. I am raising such lovely young ladies. Teaching them wonderful life survival skills - right.

Still incredibly busy. one week and counting - I have pulled all of my folders out of the file and am going through them one more time, making last minute adjustments. I am quite sure I will miss something, but hopefully nothing major. Feeling the pressure of getting all this done.

One last picture. Both girls tie ribbons in their ponytails often. I have no idea where this little hanging basket came from. I also have no idea when or how it became the storage for these. The girls stick their ribbons through it and then we are not forever looking for a ribbon. They don't get crinkled and they are handy hanging by the sink in the bathroom. Seems lots of our morning activity is here - so we also write all of our notes on the mirror in eyeliner or lip liner. Right now there is a note that says "chicken check" on the glass. A reminder to mom to write that check for the school fundraiser.

So what fun ways you use for storage and reminders? Are there things that work for your family that are unconventional? (we are fully unconventional at my house) Does chaos abound or do you have smooth running machine? (We fall somewhere in between) Have any overheard conversations that are worthy to share?

In Maggie Grace goodness - I frogged an entire hunters vest orange hat and started over - I was using a crochet hook that was too small for the gauge - yes its loud - but maybe it will replace the fart noise without any odor.

Have a wonderful day.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Thank you Martha Stewart

I am sure most of the blog world is aware of the Martha Stewart line of craft products availble at Michaels. Let me jump on here and say - the variety is wonderful. The quality immpecabble. I have favorites of course. Let me just go ahead and say that if you want me to have a merry Christmas (a not so subtle hint for my girls) get me an assortment of her paper punches.

These are picture from the Sunday School Class making book of the Bible Signs.

I never set the punch down when I use it. But the way these are constructed is wonderful.

These kids are three and four years old. Manual dexterity is a challenge at this age. Not a problem. Lay the punch on its side so the child can see the leave opening. Slide your paper in completely filling the window.

Push with the "strong" hand (Walker's description of what he is doing) .

Watch multi-colored leaves pop out on the table. Note - boys will be boys and they eventually discover that they can chop tiny bits of paper using the punch. There will be a mess around said work area. Bought lesson.

The result of this exercise. Decorated Bible book cards. This is a beginning SS class so we start with learning the two parts of the Bible and then at least how to pronounce the names. They take these cards home and hopefully keep them for a while. For the rest of November we have will complete the New Testament books and make a banner using the letters from Allsorts downloads (see sidebar) that says "thanks" - then on Dec 1st we will kick off the Christmas story.

God - I love these kids. I love their enthusiam for learning new things. I love how breaking things down to their level gives me a clearer understanding. I love the questions they come up with. The world has not dealt them enough harshness to cloud their attitude. They are positive and receptive. Maybe that is why the Bible instructs us "and said, "Most certainly I tell you, unless you turn, and become as little children, you will in no way enter into the Kingdom of Heaven."Matthew 18:3
More MaggieGrace goodness tomorrow. Have a wonderful day.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Whew -what a weekend

This is not an original title. I have used it before - there was lots of activity crammed into two days. Start with a ball tournament in a format that let's you have 4-6 hour breaks between games - we hate that. Especially when you are too far from home to go back there - and in a small area with not much to do. What do I do - I pack a bag of stuff to accomplish. I made two beanie hats and quilted a few squares on the cowboy quilt. We also went to a yard sale and an antique shop (bought 3 craft books). We left early Saturday morning and got home late (after midnight Saturday night).

Sunday was full as well - church, volleyball tryouts, go to my sisters to get a shelf for the barn, choir practice, start painting the backdrop for the program, reinact the assassination of Henry IV, make a butterfly.

The reinactment was part of a history project for Molly. Seems Henry IV was stabbed to death in a street parade. (similar to JFK according to the history) A man emerged from the crowd and stabbed him to death. Pictured above is our diorama of the scene. This is all card stock and glue in a shoe box. It was fun to finish last night. Molly printed and collaged the buildings and the people on the street are hot glued into place. The carriage has multiple layers of popdots making it 3D. Projects have always been a favorite at my house.

I also made another butterfly. This one is for the "brown" challenge in the color group I am in over at Flickr.

9 days til surgery - 6 working days for me - I have the pre op stuff on Monday, so it is not counted as a work day. Feeling the pressure already this morning. My customers have realized suddenly that this will happen and as of 9:00 am I have seen 3 homeowners - could prove to be very busy this week. I will be very glad when all this is over.

Use What I Have savings tracking (UWIHT)
2 hats ---- 50 cents
1 diorama --- 25 cents
1 butterfly --- 1.00

Have a wonderful week.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Friday - a WIP and an idea

Aren't these colors yummy. This is Manos del Uraguay in a different colorway. This stuff is so luxurious to work with. Molly says it not itchy to wear either. This is the last of what is in my stash too I'll be asking for more of this for Christmas gifts. It is hand spun and dyed so the texture and color are random. I think I'm in love. It takes one skein to make a beanie hat like the Molly loves. It is however - expensive at 16.00 per skein for the varigated ones. I can mailorder a tiny bit cheaper but when you add in freight it still comes out about the same.
I personally have had a tough week but it should improve now that some things are fully in the open. I am so amazed that even given many opportunities to make something right - someone will choose deceit to protect themselves. The resulting loss of respect and trust apparently means nothing to them. Which I then interpret as "I mean nothing to them". But it will be okay now.
Now for an idea - I have had a lot of time using what I have this year. I also read a post over at JenandJules (see sidebar) that has had me thinking. I have more than enough stuff at my house to create with. Anything I come up on that I might need I quite possibly could sub for or swap for. I have a fortune invested in STUFF. What if I tie savings and debt reduction to the using what I have idea. I can see Mastercard laughing at this idea, but hear me out.
I add a small dedicated jar in my workspace. Everytime I use an item I already had, add money to the jar. Say .25 cents. Then when the jar is full I send that "extra" money as a payment on a debt. Take the butterflies for example ---- the list of materials wire - buttons - beads - paper. That's basically 4 items so for the butterflies I make I put a dollar in the jar. The beanie hats are only one item so they are just a quarter. I am going to try this for the month of November and just see if it is something I can work with. What do you think????? There is no limit on purchasing - this is more of a reward for good behavior kind of set up. I am targeting my money for debt reduction - but you could use yours for fun money or such.
Anybody else out there want to try this????
Have a wonderful day and a fabulous weekend. I'll be at a softball field.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

nananananana - batgirl

No pictures of the Abster- she was at a friend's house. But here is the lovely batgirl - holding her first place ribbon. The funniest part of the outfit - her cape - it is my old felt poodle skirt turned inside out.

Now today she is home sick - the crud has her bad.

Hope all of you had a wonderful trick or treat night.

Have a great day.