Friday, August 31, 2012

The Great Inspiration Friday (TGIF)

Ahhh...we have made it to another Friday. I work in a lovely office during the week--but on the weekends, and some week nights when I have the energy, I am stitching, cutting, gluing, drawing, writing, cooking, gardening, and creating something.

Probably, because this is not a paid position, but rather a passion, I'm pretty driven. It's just something inside your soul that wants to be expressed. And Fridays are a great time to power up your inspiration for your weekend crafting.

So, I've renamed TGIF - The Great Inspiration Friday. Where do you get inspired? I find it everywhere. I get out my craft books, magazines...I go to Barnes & Noble and browse around...I look at all the blogs I follow...and I always love a weekend trip to Michaels or Hobby Lobby. They offer coupons every week, so I keep a perpetual shopping list of what I'm going to need now and in the future, so that I can eventually get all the things on my list at 40 or 50 percent off the retail price. Good idea, right?

One Friday, I started watching Etsy TV on YouTube...that was awesome inspiration to see all of those amazing artists and crafters and what they will do and sacrifice to follow their passion.

I love to spend an afternoon at a good arts and crafts fair too! I'm sure we all do. And sometimes I just walk around my house and find things to embroider or sketch out. And as a blogger, there is always that magical time of day when the sun is just right and you have your little photoshoot. I have to have the sun--I will not shoot with flash. I have a white table I love to photograph things on when I'm shooting my creations--and I like to take it outside to my dark brown wicker coffee table. I just put a fresh coat of white linen paint on a pullout surface in my crafty desk, because in the afternoon sun coming through that window, it's a great place to photograph. Writing about my stitching and creating I think motivates me to keep it going, find new ideas, and create more. It's like feeding the soul and nourishing the heart. Now...if I just didn't have to make myself get on the darn treadmill every morning! But I do love watching a good Meryl Streep movie while I'm on the TM.

It's no secret that Saturday is my absolute favorite day of the week--so I dearly love Friday...a day full of hope and inspiration...the yellow brick road to my rainbow.

Eat, Write, Dream, and Stitch all weekend.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

When You Hear Thunder on Thursday...

It's Thursday! The day named for the Scandanavian god of thunder, Thor. That sounds a little name a day after thunder. But a summer thunderstorm can be a bit delightful--especially when we need rain so badly here in the middle of the United States. Plus, it might start raining here before the day is over--we are expecting a huge rainfall from hurricane Issac for the next few days. In the meantime...tomorrow is the last day of August, and in my desperate love of summer, I am still trying to hang onto it! I won't give it up until possibly October. Don't judge me!
I still have flowers in the gardens around my house, and they echo my summer spirit.
I just picked more tomatoes last night--I'm going to can them tomorrow in the large quart jars my sweet neighbor gave me. Woo hoo!
I can the tomatoes, slice them up for sandwiches, make bruschetta (recipe here), fresh salsa and pasta dishes. I hope I'm still harvesting for a while. There are about a dozen plants left, looking good!

So, my fellow summer lovers how are you hanging onto the last bit of our favorite season? Here's some ideas...
Keep growing seeds--herbs and flowers are good for the soul.
Keep painting your toes!
Lounge in the fresh air. (Hi Minnie!)
Wear fun shorts! (The more embroidered, the better I say!)
Knit something in a beautifully calm spa neutral.
Wear your espadrilles! Then celebrate a summer Thursday by doing something fun--skip, dance, doodle, eat ice cream, go shopping, or just sing.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Wednesday Is Hump Day and a Peek at What's on My Work Desk!

So I've got a weekday theme going on as we wrap up August. Monday was OMG-Oh Monday, Gag! Tuesday was the Top Ten Things on a Tuesday that make me happy. And Wednesday is a special day, because beautiful, creative, crafty bloggers around the  globe celebrate Wednesday by taking a peek at each other's work tables. How awesome is that! You see a little inspiration...perspiration...desperation at times...and loads of creativity and hard work. I love it!

A couple of days ago I clipped my coupons and headed to Michaels arts and crafts store. I got fabulous paints on sale, and lots of other goodies on clearance. I dumped everything onto my worktable, and there it has stayed for two days!

All the craft punching tools were 40 percent off. Woo hoo! I got a heart punch and a butterfly. Plus, I finally found a watercolor brush that you can put the water into it, in a tube in the handle. So cool! It was full price, so I used one of my coupons and got it 40 percent off. Yay me.

Cute ribbons for a dollar.
More of those glitter pots I dollar for four.

Anniversary collection floss on clearance, and using another coupon on gorgeous color variations.
I'm excited.
I was looking for some kind of a rock-like pendant, because I'm wanting to crochet a necklace for it with organic cotton yarn. Found it! On clearance. So happy.
So while I'm organizing supplies on my worktable, I've got my angel project going on my giant leather lapdesk. It sort of travels around the house! It's all good. Happy WOYWW everyone! If you're out of the loop, click on in at What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday. It's fun!

Somebody's dreaming of squirrels.

Tuesday's Ten Things That Make Me Happy

Tuesday is not too special. In fact, it's the day of the week notorious for not being too special.  Mondays are tough. (OMG--Oh Monday, Gag!) Wednesday is hump day. Thursday is the end of the week. Everyone thanks God for Friday. Weekends are sacred. And then, there's poor ole Tuesday.

So...I just quickly thought of ten things that make me happy on a Tuesday. No biggie. Just making the day count!

So here Tuesday top ten. Love ya, Tuesday!

1-It all starts at home--my family. They are awesome. Be thankful for your family. Isn't my mom cute? She's 86!
2-My kitties. I usually have two or three kitties--they almost always live a long life. They just make me happy. Every day they do something to make us all laugh. It's like having extra children.
3-Yarn. That's all. Lots 'o yarn.
4-Floss. Skeins and skeins of it! When I look at my floss and yarn, my imagination blossoms.
5-A bouquet from my garden just makes my day. (I can hear angels singing.)
6-Summer pasta salad for lunch! It's all I need.
7-Fresh preserving my garden tomatoes. It's fun to do, and really nice, in the middle of winter, to open up this jar and experience the fresh aroma of your garden all over again.
8-Anything to do with Russian dolls! (Why am I so obsessed with nesting dolls?)
9-A garden full of fresh basil. I look at my basil patch and I see salad, bruschetta, pesto, sandwiches, pasta dishes, tomato sauces...just a garden full of culinary happiness. I keep a big pot of basil growing on my greenhouse sunporch all winter.
10-Stitching the day away. Stitching on the sunporch, sitting and chatting with everyone...stitching in bed, watching a good movie...stitching on the deck in the fresh air...stitching like I just don't care!

Sew...that's my Tuesday Top Happiness Ten! Think of ten things in your life that make you happy and you will just get this smile on your face without even trying.

Monday, August 27, 2012

OMG--Oh Monday? Gag!

Why are Mondays so hard? Why can't I get over them...I've been a grownup for a long time! How can we bash the Sunday blues for good?

I don't know all the answers...but I do know of some things that help. It's sort of like reverting to childhood: 
make sure your lunch is packed, 
your clothes are laid out, 
and your homework's done. 

I think grown people could make that work too! But it starts early in the weekend. 

First, enjoy yourself. Enjoy your Saturday! Visit with family and friends. Eat good outside...feel good about your house, even if you have to do some chores...enjoy them and be thankful for what you have!

Go to a museum, meet girlfriends at Starbucks, buy yourself a treat at the craft store. This is all stuff that makes me happy...and it's enough happiness to spill into Monday!

Smash something into your smashbook or art journal--anything! You don't have to be in I'm-Creating-Works-of-Art mode. Smash a ticket, a clipping of your extremely unreasonably priced dream bag from Vogue, a recipe you want to make, a quote or a verse that inspires you. This stuff is eye candy for the soul.

Start your own toy box. Throw in art journals, markers, stamps, stickers, things to clip, glue sticks--whatever you want to play with! On Monday morning when you're rushing around, stop and look in your toy box and smile, because you'll know it's waiting for you.

Have your lunch made--yes, it really is a good idea if you leave the house to go to work or school--have your bag packed, your clothes picked out, and cell phone charged. will have extra time to sit, relax and sip your tea or coffee in beautiful bliss. Gathering your thoughts and soothing your soul is a much better way to start the week than watching the news! My hubby and I like to sip our morning weekday coffees on the greenhouse sunporch. Even if it's just for a few minutes, I know it makes both of our days better!

Make dessert first! Plan your Monday night dinner over the weekend, and make something special for dessert! You'll be looking forward to it all day, instead of wondering what you're going to do at 4 p.m!

Check something off your To-Do list! I don't know that always feels good.

 So those are a few ideas for Oh-Monday-Gag. I'd like to see it become Thank Goodness It's Monday--okay, we know that will never happen! 

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Sunday Threads

"There is a time for finding and losing, keeping and giving, for tearing and sewing, listening and speaking."
Ecclesiastes 3:6-7

Saturday, August 25, 2012

A little birdie told me...

My little embroidered birds are flying around on their ribbon hangers in their new location on the greenhouse.

This gold stand is actually meant for Christmas decorations, but my little birdies like it just fine.
I created and embroidered them last winter--see my birdie blog here.

There's no time now...but come November and December, I'll be embroidering on felt again--making birdies...fat cats...owls...I can't wait! They look cute attached to Christmas presents. When I was in the middle of this project, I had a little plastic box with all my cut-out pieces and floss, so this was a nice portable project. We like those!

Friday, August 24, 2012

A book, a cat, and some coffee...

When your head is full of ideas, your hands are full of projects, your house needs cleaning, the garden needs watering, and the dishes are piled up, what do you do? Well, as much as I wish I could be one of those people who can get in a tub full of bubbles and make the world go away, I just can't. Honestly, sometimes, if my house isn't clean and all the dishes put away--I can't even think.

BUT--when I've done all the hard stuff first, I like to reward myself.
Sometimes it's as simple as a book, a cat, and some coffee.

Have a happy day!

I'm loving "Wicked" - I like to read right before I sleep!
Perfect bookmark, right?
At some point in the late evening, two cats end up on my bed! This is one of them, lounging on the deck.
Ahhh. Coffee.
Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch...but don't get overwhelmed!