Saturday, September 29, 2012

Gifts of Friendship...

I am truly grateful for the friends I have made through blogging.  My life is richer and I am very blessed.
Recently I had a birthday and I have been receiving wonderful gifts from many of my dear friends.
I will share some of my treasures with you and therefore you may see the generous hearts creative people possess.  Here is my package from Dorthe of Den Lille Lade.  I know you already follow her all the way to Denmark and back.

This lace collage is so beautiful.  The time Dorthe took to create this is as precious as the gift itself.  I have not seen many round collages with all the lacilicious bits and pieces that only Dorthe can put together so well.

Here is my card.  A beautiful hand made angel to watch over me.  I am certainly blessed to share Dorthe's friendship.  Thank you from my heart and soul Dear Dorthe.

This is another wonderful gift I have received.  This time from my faithful pen pal friend Dogwood.  She loves pink.  Please check out all the creative play Dogwood does on her pinkdogwoodblossom blog.  We have been sending little gifties back and forth for over two years after having met online through April National Letter Writing month.  We live just a few miles apart but have never met...yet.

The cute little box with the coordinating paper and ribbon contains tiny little rusty garden tools and a garden of paper flowers to tend.  This brings such a smile to my face.  Thank you so much Dogwood my dear friend.

Today must be brought to you by the letter "D". Dorthe, Dogwood and now Donna!  This package came from my friend Donna of Brynwood Needleworks.  I know you follow Donna!!  She is a seamstress with the most elegant touch.

From fabric Donna creates the most lovely and perfectly sewn luncheon/dinner napkins. These are truly beautiful.  Just for the record I do not intend to have food and its messy droppings fall on these.  No!  I want to enjoy them in a unique way of display.  Ideas are formulating in my head.

See all the detail Donna does?  The Brynwood label which is very professional and smart.  The leaf stitching around the edging of each napkin.  Thank you Dear Donna for thinking of me and sharing your gift of creativity with me.  I am very blessed.
I hope you like seeing all the beautiful creations made by wonderful and talented and generous friends.  I have lots more to share with you in future posts.  
Our weather is quite warm this week.  I remember October is always a surprise as Mother Nature figures out what she wants to do just before the leaves turn spectacular colors.  Every year as I volunteer at the local Chamber of Commerce I get phone calls asking me, "When is the best time to come to see the Fall colors?"  If I were Mother Nature I would know that answer...however I must be polite with the callers and simply say something to the effect of, "I'm not certain as we have not had the cold snap that is required for the leaves to turn completely."  Helloooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo...
As September is winding to a close I am enjoying the slower pace just before the mad holiday rush that engulfs us as the extended holiday season comes rushing towards us at its frantic pace.  
Creative Bliss to each and every one.  Thank you for being such a big part of my every day.  I adore reading your comments and send you each happy hugs...

Monday, September 24, 2012

Mouse House Memories...

My Mouse House memories are fond ones for me.  Ever since I was a very little girl I have adored mice.  When I was about two years old my mother and I lived in a house and I called it the mouse house.  I remember it being very small.  There was no other reason to call it that as I certainly never say any live mice in it.
So with my love of mice I have always collected them.  Forever and still to this day.  Oh I try to be selective about my choices now as my tastes have refined...actually that should read as I have run out of room...or maybe it should read as I might be growing up and maturing.
As you can see my mouse house is full to overflowing but I still manage to fit in the tiniest little new ones here and there.  Mr. C tells me that I must eliminate in order to get new ones as they must all fit into this one curio cabinet.  As you can see I do not listen very well.  I have them sitting on top of the case and you would probably find a few more in some other rooms in my home.  I do adore them all.

This shelf is dedicated to my Franklin Mint mice.  Each one came with a name and a story.  I like to put my own mouse tales to them from time to time.

This shelf is dedicated to my Disney themed mice.  Mickey and Minnie are priceless to me.  I grew up with them and love them so much.  The Mickey head is actually a camera I bought for my daughter when she was little and it used to work but somehow through the years it quit working.

Here you can see more mice than I can count.  I even still have the tiniest little gold mouse nail charm that my teenage daughter bought and gave to me long ago.  I think it was the eighties when long fingernails were all the rage and you drilled a little hole in the fingernail tip and inserted this little charm into the hole.  I wore that mouse for a very long time and am so thankful I still have it.
So as I stroll down memory lane on this Memory Lane Monday with Donna of Brynwood Needleworks I am smiling with joy at seeing my lovely little mice all snug in their mouse house.
As "do-overs" Mr. C and I blended our two homes and contents.  When it came time for me to move in with him he didn't want me to bring much STUFF!  Finally he agreed that my mouse house could come as long as it was in a back room where no one would see it.  So on moving day as I was back to my home to get some more things he moved the curio cabinet.  When I got to his house I was shocked and pleasantly surprised to enter the foyer and find my mouse house proudly resting against the wall separating the entry from the formal living room and the family room.  There it was for all to see and enjoy.  I just knew Mr. C and I would be happy and together for a very long time from that point on.  He had also ordered some new custom glass shelves as there were only three and now I have six.  Mice are small you know and they do not need 12" clearance between shelves.  Mr. C is quite the engineer and I am a lucky girl.
We are Falling into Autumn here and it is delightful.  We still have zero rain so still very dry everywhere.
May your memories keep you smiling...

Saturday, September 22, 2012

My Name is Sherry...

My name is Sherry...Saucy Chick Sherry to be exact...and I am a Craftaholic!

My muse and I could spend hours in this room alone and never get bored.  However lately with all the busyness of life we are lucky to steal snippets of time in minutes only to play and be creative.

There are so many projects started that I seriously do not know how many.  I am afraid to count them for getting overwhelmed and probably be found running from the studio screaming in terror.

In all reality I am such a lucky girl!  These are my drugs of choice and I couldn't be any happier to be in this pickle pile of projects. Now to make (not find) time to be productive is my goal.
P.S.  I hope there is no cure for this addiction as I love being creative and able to make so many different types of lovelies to share with friends and family and to hopefully sell at my upcoming participation in our Zumba studio boutique.
I shall be spending time working outdoors this weekend and cleaning up more property as Fall nears.  We have some very expensive wood left over from the deck rebuild to put away indoors in case we ever get rain.  It feels good to organize and clean up...why can't I seem to do it in my studio?!?!?!
Wonderful weekend to everyone.  Enjoy this time of year (including my friends who are having Spring).
I very much appreciate each and every one of you and adore reading your comments you leave.  Thank you sincerely...

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Halloween Swap Tags...

 My Halloween Mystical Magical Muse did not let me down.  She came through once I began gathering everything I could relate to Halloween.  This photo above shows how I used some Dutch Boy paint chips to make some tags.  The colors were already put together so it was very fast and easy.  I merely cut them to size, backed them with some construction paper and will cut them out individually.  I have yet to use these.

 I am trying to "use what I have" instead of going to the store and buying more supplies.  It is astounding the amount of supplies I do already have, including these perfectly Halloween orange tags.  Here I am auditioning the placement of some fun elements.

Thankfully I did not forget to take a photo of my finished tags for the artjoystuff swap this time.  I hope everyone enjoys what they receive from me.  I had lots of fun with my muse making these.
Now that these are completed and mailed to Kimberly I am trying not to rush Halloween.  First I want to savor every day of September and enjoy Fall that is taking place all around me.  We do not have any vibrant colors as of yet but we do have cooler mornings and nights and leaves are falling off the oak and maple trees.  Squirrels are gathering acorns for winter nourishment.  The lawn grass is growing slower so it doesn't need mowing quite as often.  My colorful pots of flowers are waning.  The roses are blooming fewer and fewer.  The pond Lilly pads are ending their stay.  Soon it will be time for the pond to hibernate for winter.
Life is good and I am enjoying every moment.  I wish for you to enjoy your moments as well.
Being creative in my mind and gearing up for a very busy season ahead...

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Fiercely Cute Kitty...

This is the fiercely cute kitty that winged its way to my home after I commented on a similar one featured on a blog.  Judy of jfabrications is the most talented and generous lady in all of Australia.  I have been following Judy for some time now and am always amazed at her various talents.   If you don't already follow her please go visit by clicking the link in her blog name.  You will never be disappointed ever.  Judy is making these kitty ornaments and donating them to her local thrift store for charity work.  I cannot imagine how much time she spends on each one.  Oh and the cutest little teapot dolls she is now making also.

 Here is a close up of the hand painted face.  This is a very regal kitty and will be looking after me and protecting me for many years to come.  Thank you so very much dear Judy.  I adore you and think the world of you and your generous work you do for so many others.  I am truly blessed we are friends.

Here is kitty balancing on the deck railing where the sun is shining brightly.  You can be certain he is now safely back in the house and watching over me here at my computer as I type.
I have gotten many lovely gifts for my recent birthday and will be sharing them in future posts.  I am truly thankful for each of you who follow my blog and for your friendships I have come to cherish.
Our weather is just about perfect...mid 80's and sunny.  Cooler mornings and evenings with Fall in the air.  Our oak trees are dropping green leaves and not even waiting for the colors to change.  I think it is because of the drought and not having enough rain water.  Mr. C and I continue to clear and clean our property.  We are doing about 5 acres around the house.  I am also trimming my Whooly Thyme again after doing so just two months ago.  It is growing over the patio stones again...I have been hand watering it and it is very happy and so am I.
My Halloween Muse helped me yesterday and I am working on my swap tags.  I see many of the other swappers have already completed and mailed theirs to Kimberly.
Blissful Creating...

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

10 Minute Block...

 I am such a creature of habit.  I see a tutorial of something I like or am inspired by and think I would love to make that...some day.  So into the tutorial folder it goes.  And then it sits.  I never seem to get back to that folder nor do I ever seem to make any of those wonderful things.  I must do it right then or forget it.  But...this time I kept a link in my red urgent box.  Come on...10 minutes?!
We all know of Suzanne McNeill if we have been in the crafting world for any length of time.  She is a wizard of all things crafty and sewing/quilting.  Here is her link to 10 Minute Quilt Squares.
Here are two that I made not to her sizing but out of some squares of fabrics I already had in my stash.
 Really?  Yes!  Only 10 minutes and here are my quilt squares.  I finished the centers with her suggestion of the Cathedral design and stitched the bias of the square inward.  I love the look.  Fast and simple and easy.  That is my kind of project.  These will make good pillow toppers...except that I have no rooms that allow for these fabrics or colors.  I could finish them into pillows and donate them to a charity which is exactly what I think I will do.  These quilt squares would also make fun book or binder covers.  Maybe for a quilt class you are taking and need to keep your notes in a notebook.

Here is a close up of the center.  This one is machine stitched however you could also hand stitch this for a softer more hand-finished look.  That would take more than 10 minutes though.
Now don't you want to try this 10 Minute block?  Small or large they are super simple and fast to make.  Thank you Suzanne McNeill for being such a genius in our creative world.
Our weather is cooler and definitely feeling Fallish.  The past two days Mr. C and I have spent all daylight hours cleaning up the property.  He chain sawed a couple of trees down and then split the wood and stacked it in the wood shed. Tons of weed-wacking and picking up of fallen tree debris.  Raking numerous piles of pine needles, leaves, trimming debris, acorns and what ever else is on the ground.  Loading the pickup truck to overflowing we have made three trips to the dump today alone.  Exhausted and filthy I am looking forward to a wonderful shower and relaxing evening.  We still have fire season and terrible drought so doing all this cleanup of the property is a very good thing.  Less fire fuel for certain.
My head is filled with thoughts of the upcoming gifting and boutique season.  My Zumba studio will be hosting a boutique and I signed up to have a table of gift items for sale.  My Merry Mystical Muse will need to get busy.  This weekend I better make my Halloween Swap Tags and get them in the mail.  The days are passing very fast.
Creative Bliss to each of you my clever friends...

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Memories Framed...

Hello.  These are little plastic army men that I have saved for many years.  They belonged to my daughter's father when he was a little boy.  He had painted the helmets...some red and some blue so that he could tell which side was fighting the other side.  For some reason I had always thought that was so clever.
He and I have been divorced for many years and lost contact with one another.  My daughter and he were not in contact either.  Then I got notified of his passing.  It was very unexpected.
My daughter has learned a lot about death and fighting for her rights in the past many months. She was his only child and he left no will or trust.  He died in another state and she had to handle everything necessary.
She gave me some of his important papers and photos and asked if I would put them together in a frame.  It was a daunting task and took me a long time.  I decided on three frames as the content flowed better that way.  I am not sharing much of them as they are very personal and contain personal data.
This frame is a shadow box and contains his Army dog tags, immunization record and honorable discharge certificate.  This is where I felt the little plastic army men belonged so you can see them along the bottom inside edge of the frame.  The rest I placed in their cigar box bunker for safe keeping.
I have now given her these framed memories and she was very surprised.  She never knew I had his army men.  She will hang the frames in her office behind the door for her personal remembrance.  The little army men will be kept on a shelf safe and sound.  Maybe they will help fight for her as life can be such a challenge.
Our weather is becoming more like Fall everyday.  The days are warm but the evenings are cooling off fast and the sunshine is shorter each and every day.  Leaves are already dropping...partly from the horrible dry conditions we have had.  I would welcome a wonderful long rainfall.
I read that some of you are Fall deep home cleaners as opposed to Spring cleaning.  I think we are doing a bit of both.  Mr. C is busy washing windows on this very treacherous two story house.  Our window washer moved to Thailand and we did not realize how long it has been.  We also did not realize what hard water we have when it comes straight from our well.  Oh the water spots on glass!  Mr. C is a very hard worker and he is getting them clean but it is a difficult job and I am thankful he is doing it.  I am his helper.
I signed up to participate in Kimberly's artjoystuff Halloween tag swap.  Please check her blog link for details and maybe you will want to join the fun.  I am ready to get creative.  I am also recommitting to making my FW QAL blocks that Donna of Brynwood Needleworks is hostessing.  Please check her link for this.
Now I am off to clear some space in my studio.  Where do these piles of stuff come from?  Oh!
Thank you all so very much for the wonderful birthday wishes.  I will be sharing some of my gifts in future posts.  Bloggers are the most generous people honestly.
Blissful Creating Friends...

Saturday, September 1, 2012

"When I'm 64"...

 Let me begin with telling my most women would never tell this but I am proud of the many years I have lived.  So when my husband gave my daughter a theme for my upcoming birthday just a few weeks ago she ran with it.  "When I'm 64" by the Beatles.  We drove to Southern California to visit with family and friends and to see my daughters new home she has worked very hard to achieve.
Here we are greeted with "Penny Lane".  Yes the penny is a 1948...the year of my birth.
 These photos are out of sync but photos were not the most important part of the night.  This is "Strawberry Fields Forever".  She also had a dish of sliced apples because the Beatles were on Apple record label for a while.  No photo but there was a lovely orange yard sculpture to represent "Here Comes the Sun".  Another photo I am missing is "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds" tribute.  She printed my favorite Lucille Ball and had her surrounded with diamond playing cards.  The amount of effort and detail was so much fun and truly added the finishing touches on my surprise party.
Here I am totally happy.  The little bear that is sitting next to me is an eBay purchase by my daughter.  He actually sings "When I'm 64".  Super cute! Yes, you do see Tinkerbell in the photo.  She wanted to attend my party too as I am Grandma Tink and my granddaughters know how I adore her.
 This is part of the family.  They are watching crazy me open my gifts.  Amber and Amy are my lovely granddaughters who helped me celebrate.

You knew "Yellow Submarine" would be a part of this party.  I am blown away by the amount of work that Dan (my daughter's long time boyfriend) put into this amazing feat of cleverness.  He printed a photo of the original version and then created an excellent version...four times over.  Of course we had way too much food but if you know our family we always overdo the food.

The cake was embellished with the Beatles record too.

Here is a lovely photo of my daughter, Jenifer Michelle (Shelby) with Wayne.  We took a drive to Dana Point and enjoyed walking around and looking at the boats.  The weather was perfect!

Here I am with my lovely daughter.  I am so thankful for the special woman she is and that she is so good to me.  Thank you my dear Shelby.

After a great dinner at The Beach House in Laguna Beach treated to us by my dear husband we ventured over to the Pageant of the Masters.  In all the years I lived in So Cal I never attended this event.  My mother went many times and always told me I must go because of how much I would enjoy it yet I never went.
All I can say is WOW!  Thank you again Shelby for treating Wayne and I to this amazing event.  I will always remember how very special this night was.
We had a wonderful visit.  Your "Bed and Breakfast" was comfortable and lacked nothing.  Service was excellent and the food was wonderful.  Thank you for taking such good care of us sweetheart.  Thank you for putting on such a wonderful memorable birthday party.  Now I am 64.  Life is good.