Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Almost like a baby picture

You know the ones.....

you have taken in your adorable toddler/grandchild/ neice and nephew/ puppy to a studio and the next thing you know you are forking out 20 bucks for a photo. ONE photo.

One you know would only cost 2 bucks to print at Wal-Mart and maybe even less on your home computer....

but you get sucked in.

You have to have that image...that shot, that one perfect glimpse in time.

That is how I felt when they e-mailed me this image

Because while I know that I am not perfect, this moment was.
I was afraid to run my first half marathon alone. I was afraid to run it in a different place, I was afraid to run it after laying around for 2 months with a bummer ankle and toothache.
But I did it anyway.
All by myself....
....and this photo takes me right back to the moment that I did it.

So for that, I will pay.

Do we really capture enough of the celebration moments to relish and relive?

What's more, do we give ourselves cause to celebrate?

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Some days I hate it here

I am being totally honest.

Some days I see the stained glass windows, the tall ceilings, the sloped roof, and I sigh with a happy heart. My house feels like a cottage, and we seriously love spending time together here.

Other days, all I see are the cracks in the walls, the not so level floors, the old linoleum and the lack of storage.
Some days it smells musty and old. The walls are thick and I can't hang up a picture. The carpet, although redone, feels old.
My kitchen is more like a Smithsonian display of 70's hideousness than a workspace.

Some days I curse it, and even cry.

It is the day of upgrading. Friends and family alike, moving into new (great priced) homes with a pantry in the kitchen and real live mudroom. It is the age of big homes, beautifully painted and decorated with stone and stucco in yummy warm colors. It is the day of a great room and cold storage....
none of which I have.

I am sorry sweetie, that some days I don't appreciate it.
I know we are over indulged and many people live beyond their means.
I know that in just 24 months we will not even have a house payment. (I can't wait)

I know that we would not be different, happier, more content just because we change locations.

I know it is never good to compare and compete.
I know we are blessed.

I know we are better than we deserve.

But just some days....
I want more.

Am I bad because of that?

Friday, February 12, 2010

Valentine's Love and Swap Box

I was lucky enough to get in on the challenge of creating a Valentine Box for another artistic blogger arranged by Treasured Heirlooms. I made mine, learning as I went, and realizing using Modge Podge is not always as easy to use as it looks.
Click on one of the links on my sidebar to see more of the swappers blogs.

A few days after sending it off I received my lovely box from my swap partner, Andrea at Bella Vintage Studio.

It was so beautiful I hardly wanted to untie the pretty lace. Inside proved to be just as stunning.

Ephemera and tidbits, lace and trinkets, pictures and tags just waiting to be made into something lovely. There were chocolates, too, but I was eating them while arranging my goods for the photo, so they were left out of the picture. (They didn't look so good chewed up).

To purchase some of Andrea's goodies for yourself visit her studio store at ETSY.

To add to my Valentine collection, today I received an unexpected (and unsolicited! Even Better!) Valentine in the mail from Becky at Moonlight Journey. She made the gorgeous tag on the left.

You can see the time she takes with each piece, right down to the envelope. I believe sentiments such as this are a lost art, but one I intend on relishing in more, myself. The journal and bookmark are things I made with one of her digital graphic sheets, just print and embellish (or not, I left the cover as is, I loved it so much) and attach, and you have a beautiful creation of your own. Becky's blog is equally amazing, as well.

You can also catch the corner of the New Year book I challenged myself to read, "Life Is A Verb" by Patti Digh. I am only 20 pages in and have already been stunned by the journey it has taken me on. I recommend it to anyone who is looking to appreciate the life they have and live it with intention, especially those artistically inclined.

Now comments are off, so take a minute to click on one of the links in my post and discover something new. Happy Valentine's Day.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Pretty Little Things

This Valentine's season my sister at Little White Attic decided to begin a family Valentine swap. Nothing too big, just make a little something to send to each other. We had nieces, sisters, and even our mom join in the exchange.

I have to tell you, if you have the winter time 'blahs' set up an exchange with someone you know. I loved finding all sorts of little treasures in the mailbox, excitedly ripping into cute little hand addressed envelopes waiting for me, with bits of art inside.

The display has become quite impressive, and while my husband couldn't quite figure out what all the fuss was about ("you'll just throw them away on February 15th!") I LOVE these sentiments from the girls in my family, and I will keep them until someone pries them out of my cold dead hands! (feel free to click on collage photos to get a closer peek).

The best part about it was seeing what everyone came up with, some quirky and funny, some reminding us of childhood Valentine's, some glamorous and vintage alike. I hope we decide to do it again next year- because as I appreciate the pieces I wonder why we don't do things like this for each other more often.

My son also surprised me with a recent school project. He took sewing last term, and for his final project decided to make a tote bag sling. He said he didn't want it and that he would make one for me. Once I chose the fabric he was picky about the zipper and straps, but finally we agreed on the materials.
I have to say, I have never sewn anything unless babied step by step by a sister, so seeing what he made really impressed me. He even promised to help me make an apron soon. I hope he has the patience to work with a rookie like me, but for now, this little backpack is another piece of art in my eyes.

I also received my Valentine's Box from swap partner, arranged by Treasured Heirlooms. I have been instructed to wait to show what I got, so that you means you will have to wait, too, but let me just tease you by saying it was an artists dream to open that little box, and you will be sorry you didn't join the swap when you see it!