Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Retiring Church Clerk

Well, I just finished transcribing my minutes for the Church's Annual Meeting last Sunday, and I signed it 'Retiring Church Clerk'. Phew! It feels good to be on to something else. This was my second go-around as Church Clerk and was 5 terms, I think. It's not a hard job, and I do like to be 'involved' and know what's going on, but . . . I want to do some other things.

Bob and I are interested in the Green Team Ministry, and the things they are doing. Under the leadership of Jim Winfield, our Music Director, they have saved the church a lot of $$ in utility bills, and are working on other ideas.
We are going to put together an entry for the St. Patrick's Day parade and I am making a 'Clutter Bug' in the nature of a Chinese Dragon. I wanted to take a picture of all the parts I assembled before putting them together, but I forgot. Oh well. If you want to visualize it, there's a round plastic laundry basket, 2 plastic containers with lids, a child's megaphone, 2 dusters(?) on sticks, several chenille stems and some orange ping pong balls donated by Pastor Rick. He's a ping pong champion among other things! I also bought navy and green tulle, and nine yards of green print 'floaty' fabric for .50 a yard. Joey drilled holes in the container lids and megaphone for me. The rest remains to be seen!

Lent is a Wonderful Time To Make a Special Commitment

I received this from two wonderful women, both Ministers in our Church. Maybe you would like to join in.

On Ash Wednesday, February 25th we will be joined by Christians throughout the world in the celebration of Lent, 40 days plus Sundays until Easter Sunday. We here at First Congregational have an awesome opportunity to make a special commitment during these 40 days.

All members, friends of and especially our children and youth, are invited to participate in a "Complaint Free" Lent. (Jan and Martha will be handing out purple wrist bands tonight. You might be able to make something similar if you wish to participate.)

Gandhi said, "Be the change you wish to see in the world...."

I'm going to try to be 'complaint free'. What about you?

Monday, February 23, 2009

Nifty Tool Thing

I bought this thing at the Sewing Show at Pheasant Run last Fall. I didn't know why I needed it - it just looked interesting. Well, the first time my embroidery machine got 'stuck' and there was a 'birds nest' of thread under the hoop, I knew just which tool to reach for!

It is very thin, and slides under the hoop with no problem. You can then cut through the thread mess and remove the hoop.

Now, if someone can tell be why my thread 'shreds' going through the upper tension, some times, I'd really like to know. It's usually the dark thread, and I've heard that it has more dye on it and is, therefore, thicker. Can't think of anything else. These machines are finicky.

Old Age is a Gift

OK, I really like this message, BUT - I am not admitting to being old - just to getting closer to it. Cara

Old Age, I decided, is a gift.

I am now, probably for the first time in my life, the person I have always wanted to be. Oh, not my body! I sometimes despair over my body, the wrinkles, the baggy eyes, and the sagging butt. And often I am taken aback by that old person that lives in my mirror, but I don’t agonize over those things for long.

I would never trade my amazing friends, my wonderful life, my loving family, for less gray hair or a flatter belly. As I’ve aged, I've become kinder to myself, and less critical of myself. I’ve become my own friend.

I don’t chide myself for eating that extra cookie, or for not making my bed, or for buying that silly cement gecko that I didn't need, but looks so avante garde on my patio. I am entitled to a treat, to be messy, to be extravagant.

I have seen too many dear friends leave this world too soon; before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging.

Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer until 4 AM and sleep until noon?

I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 60’s & 70’s, and if I, at the same time, wish to weep over a lost love… I will.

I will walk the beach in a swim suit that is stretched over a bulging body, and will dive into the waves with abandon if I choose to, despite the pitying glances from the jet set. They, too, will get old.

I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten. And I eventually remember the important things.

Sure, over the years my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break when you lose a loved one, or when a child suffers, or even when somebody’s beloved pet gets hit by a car? But broken hearts are what give us strength and understanding and compassion. A heart never broken is pristine and sterile and will never know the joy of being imperfect.

I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turning gray, and to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed, and so many have died before their hair could turn silver.

As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think. I don’t question myself anymore. I’ve even earned the right to be wrong…

So, to answer your question, I like being old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be. And I shall eat dessert every single day. (If I feel like it)

I didn’t like that last line and tried to cross it out, but there's no option for that in blogging! I am going to do my best to stay as young as I can for as long as I can, and enjoy the life I have to the best of my ability.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Chinese Dragons and other things I've gotten myself into

I can't believe I did it again! Went and volunteered to 'do something'. This time, it's a Chinese Dragon like costume for 6 to 8 adults to wear for our local St. Patrick's Day parade! Actually, it's going to be a 'Clutter-Bug', made from recyclables, 'worn' by members of our church's Green Team. Others are going to collect empty water bottles and similar stuff along the parade route. I'm doing green hats and bow-ties for them with First Congregational Church Green Team, and our Tree of Life logo on them. Good ideas - but lots of work. The good news is that it seems we CAN get into the parade. Originally we were told there's a waiting list. Maybe they like the idea, too.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

New House for Quilt is an Apartment!

Well, the day finally came for the new block to come out. I had to drop everything and make it (them) immediately! Had a little difficulty in cutting the little squares accurately, had to re-cut several. I think I need a new, or easier to read, ruler. Other than that, making them was fun!! I think they are really cute.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Little Crayon Artist Oliver

Eagle eyed Karen noticed the ornament I was working on, next to the plate. Here he is, with the crayons attached. I'm thinking of applying for a 'designer' position and might submit this and the one of Georgie at left, as my samples.

One Trick Pony or not . . .

This is absolutely the last time I'm posting a picture of my Wedding Tree. I know, I know - you're thinking "why is she posting that again? Well, I added Stephanotis to the branches to lighten it up a little. What do you think? Is it overkill?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I ran out of cheese before I ran out of crackers . . .

I found the most delicious 'cheese spread' ever at Dominick's. It's goat cheese with golden raisins and rum flavoring. mmmmmmm The manufacturer is Celebrity International, and it's imported from Canada by Atlanta International New Jersey-

Pink and White Portrait Pillows

The picture on the left is my Grandmother and Grandfather's wedding portrait. The one on the right is Aunt Ella, my grandfather's sister. Aren't they beautiful? I wanted to enjoy them without ruining the photographs, so I made these pillows for my bed. They are hand beaded all around the edge, in various sized pearls. Fabric is cream and pale pink print. This set of pillows was the start of Portrait Pillows, Bags and more. Who knew? One pillow just lead to another. At first I thought people would like them - and called them 'Instant Ancestors'. I was half right. They did like them, but wanted them with their own family photos. Joey and Amy predicted this.

Amy's Domino Jewelry

My darlin' Daughter, Amy, makes this great jewelry and I want to show it off! I wear my jewelry every day, and people are always stopping me to admire it and, ask where I got it! I really love the jewelry. My whole family is represented. Amy sometimes makes it using color photos, and that looks great, too. I'm partial to the sepia, and love 'old photos' - you may have already figured that out, if you have read my blog. I have some of the most beautiful pictures circa 1900.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

There's a lot to do lately.

First of all, I received a similar message on Facebook from two special friends. Both filled out '25 random thoughts' about themselves, and passed it on for me to do the same. I've been thinking about 'the 25' ever since. Both friends are so deep and interesting, I want to respond in the same way. What a challenge! It may take a few days.

In the meantime, I have two pillow orders! And they have to be done by Friday. I'm also up-dating our Church Directory in two forms. One for new members, which is a revision of our last Pictorial Directory. The other is a digest size with just names and addresses - a nice, convenient size. And my last seewing class is this afternoon. And, it's gotten really cold again! brrrrr

Some time ago, I made a lampshade for Bob, using pictures of him from baby on, that I found when we moved. The lamp is a great old brass table lamp his Mom had given him many years ago. It is special to him, and the shade was stained. I covered the shade with textured silk I had sewn the pictures (printed on cloth) to. It turned out really well. I'll take a picture and post it soon.

After that, I did a small, childs lamp shade for display in my studio, using some pictures of me. A picture of it is at right.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Link for House Quilt challenge

I told some friends that they could get this link for the House Quilt from my blog, then realized I didn't put it on my original post, so . . .

I have made a promise to myself to finish this (B)lock (O)f the (M)onth quilt! It will be my first quilt and I think it will be fun. I love the little houses.

Each month on the 15th this website, Forever Green Quilts, will post a different block to make. At the end of the year, you then have a full quilt or wall hanging.