Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Birthday Party

I'm not sure there is any crafting joy greater than creating something for loved ones.  This weekend my little girl had a goldfish birthday party.  And, while it took a few late nights, I feel very proud with how the decor turned out.  So, it prompted me to blog them!  Thanks for taking a look at my proud crafting mommy moment :)

I did my best to make all the food tie back to the fish theme.  So we had:
Build your own Submarines
PB and Jelly Fish sandwhiches
Shrimp Coctail
Spinach dip, in a fish bowl which I called "Sea Weed"
Gold Fish Crackers (of course!!)
Pretzel Rods (Which I labeled Fishing Rods)
And gummy words or "Bait" as we called it
And I had cheese cubes laid out in the shape of fishes

 I made little pendants and hung them with command hooks that read: "Splish Splash" and "Happy Birthday."  Trying to cut all these little triangles reminded me that I spent some of high school geometry in the hospital and never really had a desire to figure out angles again after that...so hubs had to intervene and help.  Otherwise, they would have all been different sizes!
 The MagnaDoodle reads: Welcome, So good to SEA you :)
 For an activity for little ones, I cut out paper fish and created a Gone Fishin' Hole.  Huge hit.  Especially the glass rocks I picked up from the Dollar Tree.
 As a party favor, we sent the kiddos home with goldfish in a bag...of soap!  Adorable idea I nabbed from Pinterest and a huge hit with the kiddos.  I also purchased about 500 fish beaded necklaces from Oriental Trading so if you have a need for plastic fish (which I put in the soap) or fish necklaces, I'm your go-to.

I think that's all the bits and pieces of the decorations.  It was a total blast and now, I've got a year to plan my baby girl's next birthday!!!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Seam Ripper

Tonight, I made this Taggie blanket per the request of a friend.  She offered to pay me, but I said, "Why don't you watch my kid for a few hours?"  I believe this is called battering.  Either way, she's a wonderful friend and I'm happy to make a gift she can pass on. 

Since, I dedicated tonight to sewing, I thought I'd take the Singer Confidence for a joy ride just to see what she was capable of.  This leads me to the title of today's post.  Who created the seam ripper?  She's a genius.  I assume the inventor is a female because the seam ripper implies mistakes have been made.  I made plenty of mistakes while playfully exploring new stitches tonight on my machine.  Which got me thinking about other mistakes in my life.  If only I could easily grab my little gadget and rip out those last few stitches, the ones that missed everything up, then continue on all mistakes forgotten.  Unfortunately, life isn't so simple.  Mistakes require "I'm sorry's" and change and sometimes tears.  Some of my mistakes turned out to be blessings, but they definitely did not feel that way at the time.  Some mistakes changed everything, opening a new chapter in my life.  Others, I still think about on still nights and wonder how things would be if I'd said or done something differently.  I wonder, what would have happened in those moments if I'd been able to just simply pull out a few seams and try again.  Would the lessons I've learned from those mistakes settled the same way?  How different would our lives be if we had a seam ripper?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

An inspired fire: Taggie Blankets

An inspired fire: Taggie Blankets

Taggie Blankets

I made this awhile ago...but haven't posted them.  I got obsessed and made several for friends.  A great way for me to practice sewing and a great way to use up ribbon scraps.  One of the ones I made for Betty is mostly ribbons from packages at my baby showers a great way to preserve those wonderful memories!

Grace or something like it...

Here's a disclaimer.  This is a personal post.  But, one I've felt like I should share, so I'm going to.  I'm not trying to trash the Lutheran Church, it's just my thoughts on my Spirituality and where I feel God is leading me in that journey.  My journey has included a lot of great spiritual education that has given me strong roots.  But, when I found myself pregnant and unmarried, the church had a lot of finger pointing to do.  I sought mercy, the church sought justice.  God in his infinite wisdom provided me with both.

"It is better live your own destiny imperfectly than to live an imitation of someone else's life with perfection." -Bhagavad Gita (emphasis added)

I've read that phrase before, but the last time I read that phrase, it hit me: This is why I never settled into being Lutheran.  I tried so hard to fit into that box, but I was always living a lie.  I ws trying to perfectly imitate what the church taught me.  Despite years of trying to fit that build and diving into theological discussion head first, my being Lutheran was like expecting a cat to be man's best friend.  Today when I reflect on my life, my destiny, I recognize the journey I'm supposed to be on.  It's a cluttered life.  It's imperfect.  There is a small amount of chaos surrounding each day.  But, there is also a large amoung of joy.  The journey I've been on has been a quest to find spirituality, center, a driving force.  Not a book of rules or decisions with the answers already made.

For me, being Lutheran was like cheating on a test.  The questions all right there in front of me and my #2 pencils sharpened and in my hand.  But, everytime I read a question, the bubble automatically filled in the answer.  Even when I disagreed with the answer.  I kept trying to answer C, but B filled in first.  And no matter how hard I tried, I could never get to a point where I believed B was right over C.

I've been told "hindsight is 20/20.  I think that is why I'm able to see so clearly that living perfectly in a structured destiny left little for me to dream about or desire.  The quest to finding God in our everyday lives is not about filling in an answer someone else told you is right on a test.  It's about living imperfectly and having the courage to wonder what will happen if we really aren't perfect.  That is what grace is!  Grace is not having the perfect score on your test.  And, understanding grace is having a recognition that imprefection is so much better!!!

I don't expect to live without consequences or discipline.  But, when it comes to spirituality, the air on your own journey is so much easier to breathe.  Following your own spiritual path is far more exillerating than living a spiritual lie.  What I've come to learn through this process is that freedom and grace, are the same thing.  As Janis Joplin says, "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose."  Living in grace, means living like you've got nothing to lose, because really, in terms of faith and God's love, you really don't have anything to lose.

You've got to figure, she knows something about freedom with a smile like that!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Romans 5:2

I'm writing today because, I miss it.  I miss writing.  After an almost year long sabatical from all things writing related, I finally missed it.  I miss publicly displaying my thoughts, feelings, hopes, ideas and the vulnerability of their exposure.  I played this cat and mouse game with myself today about writing.  I spent about 30 minutes this morning making a few cards and I told myself that now, I should do laundry.  Laundry is more important than taking the last few minutes of nap time to myself.  Isn't funny the way mommy-hood gives you this feeling that you are never allowed to have more than 1 "me" moment in a day?  Stupid lie.  How many moms live this way?
Anyways, I'm behind on my verse a day calendar because I have commitment issues.  I over-commit to things.  I get abnormally attached to things abnormally quickly.  For example, my calendar has been set on March 3rd for quite some time now because I really like March 3rd's verse.  Today, I finally commited to switching it.  This turned out to be a positive outcome:
"We throw open our doors to God and discover at the same moment he has already thrown open his door to us."  Romans 5:2 (MSG).  I've been working on hospitality in my life for a few years.  A less than hospitable thing happened to me and I've been trying to render out what hospitality should look like.  Since then, I've been seeking how to make myself a hospitable person.  It has become an obsession, a calling, and ongoing discussion between my head and my heart.  So this verse hits me hard, open doors are a huge part of living a hospitable life.  But more than that, the willingness to open those doors when we don't know what is on the other side is true hospitality.  With God, when we finally reach the point of opening that door to spirituality, He's already there.  No searching or wondering what's next required.  So we find ourselves right where we wanted to be all along, with everything we needed. 

And if you are wondering about March 3rd's verse, I might be back by next May.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Coffee Can

My new mom motto is: Coffee, Coffee, Coffee.  My sister-in-law has 4 boys, 4 and under.  When she found out she was prego with the last two (twin boys) she went out and bought the largest coffee cups I've ever seen.  So, I made this little canister for a friend...and put some ground coffee inside, of course!

It's just a simple pail I picked up at Joann's and then covered with paper.  Giving the gift of coffee is my first love language, finding paper that matches someone's personality is my second.  So, I think I liked making this project more than my friend enjoyed receiving it!  Delightful.