Wednesday, December 31, 2008

life is like...

I'm working my first jigsaw puzzle in ages, and everytime I work one, I muse that life is like a puzzle. So many little pieces that come together to make something special. What can be a jumbled mess, with patience and attention, emerges into a state of order and completion.

Things not working out like you want? Try looking from a different perspective. It takes time to work a puzzle, it's not finished the first time you sit down to give it your attention. You do a lot of sorting, compartmentalizing. Think at first of the big picture, and set your boundaries. Get it straight along the outer edges, then start to see what goes where. See where you want to give your attention, and gather the bits to bring that into focus. But then again, you don't have to have just one focus...there are several parts to make the whole, and it's fun to figure out how to make the different parts of the puzzle, as with our lives, come together.

You might look and realize you have a piece in there that just doesn't fit. You've managed to jam it in there temporarily, and at a glance it looks as if it belongs. But when the other pieces try to fit in, it just doesn't work. We've all had this experience. While one side may jig in the jigsaw of life, the other sides do not. You have to pull it out of that spot and set it aside to see just how it will fit in the big picture. It may be a background piece...necessary for the picture to be complete, but not the main focal point.

Sometimes you don't see a piece fitting when you look at it individually. You may not recognize what that piece is until you join the parts to see the big picture. Sound familiar? Such is life. Sometimes things shift a bit, and you have to be able to adjust. Step back, take a look, and see if things have gotten askew. That particular row or section may have slipped, and once you set it right, the pieces go together easily.

Happy new year everyone. May the pieces of your puzzle be colorful and complete. And if you think you're missing a piece, take a look around. Maybe it's just dropped on the floor, waiting for you to pick it up again.

Monday, December 29, 2008

a bit of progress on the sewing room

Still not done, but I'm making progress. One of the ladies on the HGTV board, Kim-Strut526, has a picture of her sewing room, and she included a peg board. I had been thinking along those lines myself, so this was a good time to do it. It's not readily visible as you walk in, being tucked behind the door, and it works out really well. Keeps my rulers accessible, but not in the way.

My design wall is up, but I still want to tweak it a bit. It's 4 pieces of foam board that I taped together on the back side, and has batting on the front. There are 3 binder clips spaced across the top that are used to hang it on the wall. It feels a bit flimsy. I'll be thinking on that one. Maybe mount it on some little strips of wood similar to the peg board? Feel free to comment and let me know what you'd do, or how you did yours.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Sew Happy Quilting had a Christmas miracle...

You've got to see this. A wonderful Christmas miracle indeed. Make sure you watch the youtube video.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas and the sewing room

The kids came over Sunday for our family gathering and gift exchange. Flexibility is nice when there are other gatherings going on, and it worked out well to be finished with the hustle/bustle a bit early. Yesterday was good, going over to John and Bonnie's, and Nolene and Joe came too on their way back from Tammy's house.

Wednesday I got started on fixing up my sewing room. I kind of threw things in there when I moved in, and had things where I could pretty well get to them but not really put together. So I've painted the room, put up a curtain (though that could change, at least something's up besides the blinds) and have started getting it back together. At this point my plan is to not bring back in everything that went out! I'll get out today and possibly get some shelves to go on the wall. I'm slipping in the "before" picture and the "during" picture. Bear in mind I had the hutch in the sewing room initially, which took up some space, and it has recently been moved to a better spot, giving me more space to work with. The paint is Behr's Berries and Cream for the accent wall, and Canyon Cloud for the other three.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

the stockings were hung by the chimney with care

Years ago when the kids were small, 'way back when we lived in Haltom City, I made these Christmas stockings from one of those pre-printed quilted panels and embroidered their names. They were cute, and every year they've been brought out, even though the kids have long since moved out on their own.

Each year Santa still makes a visit to their stockings, leaving little trinkets of this 'n that. However, as they've grown and now have families of their own, the stockings have evolved into family stockings, and the number of trinkets has increased. Last year the stocking was supplemented with a Wal-Mart bag to hold some of the goodies.

This year, I decided to come up with something a bit better, but still honoring the age-old tradition. I picked up a couple of larger stockings, and stitched the old to the new. Now, instead of one, there are actually two stockings to hold the goodies! Wah-lah!!

In case I don't write again before the big day, Merry Christmas all. I trust your blessings are many.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

comfortable shoes

I bought a new pair of shoes the other day. I was in the store and had a lot of walking to do, and it didn't take very long to realize the flats I wore to work weren't going to cut it. You see, I bruised my big toes sometime in the last year, so I've been wearing open-toed shoes for awhile. Why I decided I would wear the flats when I knew we had shopping to do is beyond me, but it didn't take long to feel the pressure. Anyway, one of our stops was in a shoe store to get some gift cards, and while we were there, I took a look around. I came across these, reminiscent (probably spelled that wrong!) of Mary Janes. Can't say I was ever overly fond of Mary Janes, with their straps and patent leather, but these had plenty of toe room, and are actually made in tennis shoe comfort. (I notice the pic is kind of dark, but I think you can see it ok.)

So this got me to thinking of different shoe fashions. Remember saddle oxfords? Seems like I wore those for years as a girl in the late 50's. Then as I was googling for an image, look what I found! I don't wear heels anymore, but if I did, I don't think there's any worry that I'd be wearing these.

I rocked along through high school, and I think tennis shoes were my main footwear, can't remember too well so they must not have made an impression on me. But....a few years later I was working in a doctor's office, and clogs became the rage. Didn't I look cute in my little white uniform clogging around. Sorry, you'll have to settle for a mental image, I don't think I have a picture of me wearing them, but here's one of some similar clogs. I don't really recall them being all that great, but darned if I was going to say anything about it since I paid more than what I usually paid, and didn't want to hear any "I told you so".

Anyway, I guess I've graduated into the "I don't care what they look like, I want to be comfortable" stage. Though Elizabeth has been known to point out when it's time for new tennis shoes after they've worked in the yard a few times, I've got to say, that's probably when they're at their best.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

tick, tick, tick

Well, some would say it's tick tock, tick tock. But as I sit here in the quiet of the early morning, I hear tick tick tick from the clock on the wall. After all, each tick is a new second, so they wouldn't be echo's of the one previous. Ah, enough.

Anyway, I worked last night. We had our Night of Holiday Magic, the community's tree lighting event. I was in the booth to receive toys and food drop-offs, and people are generous. I was surrounded by sacks long before the end of the evening. Yes, there are people with needs this year, but it's nice to be reminded that there are those who want to help in whatever way they can. Sorry I don't have a picture to post, but if I come up with one when I get back to the office, I'll add it.With time ticking along, I haven't been able to do much more than toss Christmas goodies into my spare room. Think the sign will do any good to act as a deterrent to any who happen to wander down the hall?