Wednesday, April 29, 2015

WOYWW 308--Spring Crafty Corner Reorganizing

Visit crafty desks around the planet at What's-On-Your-Workdesk-Wednesday.

Thanks for stopping by my crafty corner of the world. Everything is about to change. Right now I have my cross-stitch organizer out...I'm going to make a pillow with this sparkly angel I stitched a couple of years ago. It's a little dark in the not great! Then, I have work to do. This white gate-fold, cute stenciled table I have been inhabiting is going next to the window, the leaves are going down, and it's transforming into a sewing table. Then, the big ole green desk in the corner with the cubby shelves is going to be my craft desk. I'm cleaning out every cubby in that set of shelves, and reorganizing the drawers. This is a job. But I'm suddenly inspired from some YouTube desk tours, so I guess that's all it took! Spring is a great time to reorganize and clean out, and I know some people don't believe a craft space can be "pretty" but I really want to pretty things up. And I'm just needing more regular desk space combined with space for scrapbooking, paper crafting, and art journaling.

I'm just happy to be around this week! I had the first of two laser sessions on my eye last week. The second one is next week, so I'll be out again. I'm doing fine, and hopefully my eye will continue to heal and do better! Thank goodness for the medical technology we have. Yes, it does hurt to have this done, but the procedure only lasts a few minutes, and I have an amazing eye surgeon. Very thankful! Have a good week.

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Gardening & Journaling About It

Years ago I took a patterned paper tag pad I bought, and used the papers to make a garden journal. Snapped pictures, posted about it, and then kind of forgot about it. When it came time to use it, I couldn't find it! Classic me, in the crafty corner, putting things away and losing them. So recently, I accidentally found it, stuck in the wrong cubby and covered with envelopes. So now what? I'm using it this year to journal about my garden. Guess it was just meant to be.
First there'll be the baby pictures of my baby garden--seedlings on the greenhouse.
I'm also going to use the journal to draw my garden plan, plot where I'd like to put starts, and plan ahead where I will sow seeds straight into the garden. My spaghetti squash always seem to do better when the seeds are sown right into the open garden, the pumpkins too. And I plant basil seeds all summer.
I love putting beads or buttons on journal covers.

I'll use a couple of pages for the canning recipes I'm going to make with the tomatoes, and my favorite garden recipes like bruschetta, roasted cherry tomatoes, and fresh pasta sauce.
 I think I'll do better this year at keeping track of where I've planted different varieties of plants.
A day in the garden last year
I hope the journal will wrap up the gardening season with some beautiful pictures like this (my ongoing harvest last year). And I might press a couple of zinnia blooms into the journal. Hopefully it will be packed and so will the garden.

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch, Grow

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

WOYWW 306--A Busy Basket

Since the weather has been warmer, I don't always stay in my cozy crafty corner of the house in my leggings and hoodie--I wear t-shirts and embroidered jeans and wander more into the hitherlands...I might sew in the dining room, especially if I'm attempting an actual pattern...I might stitch and art journal on my greenhouse sunporch...or I might hang out in the great room with everybody. I have a busy basket, and it travels around the house.

Tell us your desk story at What's-On-Your-Workdesk-Wednesday. Or just visit!
This is from Tuesday morning actually. Semi-clean. So there's the busy basket right now, in the middle of my desk. It's stuffed with my stitching, my junk journal, calendar, and Coach zipper pouch of stuff. (I own vintage Coach that I actually bought myself right after college, back in the eighties and I still love it.)
This week I'm obsessed with my little seedlings, starts and garden plans. I love growing food and flowers. I'm also obsessed with my gardening journal, now that I've found it! I'm definitely going to use it this year--I'll post more about that tomorrow. There's my regular mixed-media art journal opened up to a page I made from the gelli plate and I'm adding some journaling and trying out some stamps on it. That little heart envelope on the stand there is a cute wedding invitation from my niece--I'm trying to be the first person to send back the reply. In the upperleft corner is a bunch of little embroidery hoops I found in my stash which I plan to actually use and make some art with. There's my tube of an amazing lemony hand cream I love and use all the time.

In the meantime, I'm short today, for I'm off to the eye doctor for a dilation/checkup which means I won't be able to get on the computer for hours! But I'll be back.

Happy Wednesday!

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch

Monday, April 13, 2015

A Morning on the Greenhouse

I am loving this fresh spring air and being able to enjoy my morning coffee on my greenhouse sunporch. It is not heated, so I'm never out there in the middle of winter--except to water all the plants: some that I'm overwintering, and others that just live there year-round like my aloe veras and Christmas cactuses. Our deck is torn down, and I can't wait for the new one! But in the meantime, life is good on the greenhouse.
With my oatmeal and banana and coffee, I stitched and watched crafty videos on my tablet. This is my busy basket that I throw things in to take into different rooms, depending on my what I'm doing.
 Minnie is my constant companion, and was right next to me.
I love my Christmas cactus plants - even though they only bloom in November and December. We always put a Christmas tree on the greenhouse - so it becomes very festive out there.
My seeds are growing! Happy happy! I have them on the sunniest, warmest end of the greenhouse next to a huge aloe vera plant. In case you don't know the tragic story of my biggest aloe vera plant, read it here. But don't worry, it has a happy ending, and that aloe vera plant became so huge, I had to divide I now have two huge aloe veras, and a smaller one. Now, I may need to either get a bigger pot or divide that aloe vera again!

For this year's garden I'm growing varieties of tomato plants, squash, peppers, herbs and flowers--my usual. Our university has an amazing plant sale that's coming up soon though - that's where I get the unusual. Agriculture students grow a huge, interesting variety of plants over the year, and the school sells its plant sale ever. If your university has an agriculture department, check into it and see if they have a plant sale. This year I'm on a mission for Purple Cherokee tomato starts and more of that wonderful pink lavendar!

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch, Grow

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

WOYWW 305 - Hotel Stitching

Here's what's been on my desk while I've been on a little road trip...
That's my mountain lion, Joseph. He's mama's baby boy. If there's ever a few inches of clear space on my craft table, he joins me. Or waits for me to come back.
In the meantime, see what furry, crafty, messy and wonderful delights are on other desks 'round the world at What's-On-Your-Workdesk-Wednesday.

Here's my hotel stitching...
 I just packed up one of those thin, clear photo boxes with embroidery floss, pieces of that dark linen I found, stork scissors, and another matryoshka doll I've started. I threw it in my Jan bag with my art journal and some travel paints, and I was good to go. Kept my pretty crafty tote in the front seat with me at all times, and handy when we had some down time in the room.

Here I am with hubby at the Landing by our hotel...a lovely place on the lake to shop, walk around, enjoy eating out, and hear some outdoor entertainment.
It was cloudy that morning -- but ended up being a gorgeous, perfect day to walk by the lake. Little trips like this help renew my creativity! How about you? Have a wonderful week.

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch, Travel

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

WOYWW 304--Driving Off the Road

Good news--Call the Midwife is back, and so is Mr. Selfridge. It's spring, and I'm a happy camper. Welcome to my desk.

Visit What's-On-Your-Workdesk-Wednesday right here.

Do you ever sit at your desk with the intention of working on one thing, but then something kinda silly catches your eye, and you veer off the road and drive in the grass. At least, that's what I call it. I try to color in the lines, and then off I go. So, I was working on my Master Make List (you can see more about that in my post from yesterday if you wish), and do some stamping in my junk journal, and I suddenly saw an old piece of dark colored linen peeking out from a box. I thought it was pretty and rustic looking. But then I remembered how I never cross-stitch on linen because I can't see the holes! But something about that little dark piece of linen told me it needed some hearts. I started stitching, and suddenly I wasn't having any problem at all. I dropped everything, put on some crafty You Tube videos, and had a happy hour of stitching at my table. I love the result, and think it will be fun to applique to another piece.
Now back to my junk journaling! Have a happy week.

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

When You're Not Feeling Creative

When your muse is taking a break and the inspiration is not there, what do you do? I always wonder what causes this in the first place! Maybe too many projects in a row, and you just need a break. Or maybe your energy is down for a plethora of reasons. Maybe you're overwhelmed by your supplies and stash and can't even think of what to sew or glue to what! Maybe you're hungry, or need coffee!
I think matryoshka dolls are my muses!
It does take some creativity to keep busting your stash--but a good way to start is by shopping your own stash.

See my Stash Dash 2015 Right Here
Spending time with loved ones can boost your energy and creativity.

Here are a few more ways that seem to help me get creative again.

ORGANIZING--If my crafting space gets too cluttered and crazy, I can't think anymore. When I start putting some things away and doing some organizing and reorganizing, the ideas start to flow.

MAKE A MAKE-LIST--I actually keep lots of lists...that's another story. But my best list ever is what I call my Master Make List. It just has everything on it that I want to make someday. Some things are pretty basic like, "Work on the House Cross-Stitch" which I know is a bunch of cool patterns from El Blog de DMC that will eventually make a whole house, room by room. And I know I want to do it. But I have other things on the list in more detail such as, "Design a pattern for a stuffed cat" and underneath that line, I have indented and put a list of very specific features I want to create on my stuffed cats, like a die-cut heart embroidered with the word "joy" and embroidered eyes and eyelashes, etc. The point is, that list could be your muse when you need it.

CREATE WHEN YOU'RE CLEANING--When I have to break down and actually clean house, do dishes, do laundry, go to work, grocery shop, I still let my mind wander creatively, and I keep a little file of notes on my phone so nothing and no idea gets away from me no matter where I am. It just might make it to my Master Make List.
Inspired by junk journals I've seen on Pinterest

MAKE PINTEREST WORK FOR YOU--The whole reason I have boards full of beautiful embroidered projects, craft ideas, jewelry making, art journaling and mixed media is to inspire me when I need it. I had first joined Pinterest long ago when a friend invited me. I thought it was great looking at fun pictures, but it didn't really catch on with me until I realized that a lot of crafters have got on there and you can see some amazing work that cannot fail to inspire you. I'll share a few of my boards right here.

Sandy Leigh's Sew Blissful Stitching Board
Sandy Leigh's Art Journaling Board
Sandy Leigh's Scrapbooking Board
Sandy Leigh's Recipe Board
Sandy Leigh's Mixed Media Board
Craft with a child--my nephew wanted to make shell people the other day!

I even have boards devoted to the color pink, bento boxes, matryoshka dolls, gardening, and craft shows. Sometimes, just getting on Pinterest and pinning things to my boards inspires me.

SIP SOMETHING HOT--So I know it's now spring, at least here in the Ozarks, but something about the ritual pleasure of sipping a delicious hot tea makes me feel happy and creative. Keep some flavors of herbal teas you love in your cupboard, and you'll see what I mean. A little honey always makes it better too.

If you have some ideas about how to get the muse back, please share them here! Happy creating!
Mix up your media--stitching on paper always makes me feel creative!

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch