cavalier king charles spaniel · dogs · friends · golden doodle · painting · Uncategorized

The Soul of the Dog

A few weeks ago, my friend Molly’s dog, Murray, had his eyes painted by artist Sheila Wedegis.   She is dedicating all of March to painting dogs’ eyes, or as she puts it, the soul of the dog.  Sheila posted an invitation to send our photo to her of our dog, and I sent her a picture of my Cavalier King Charles Spaniel,  Princess Fiona.  I received an email the next day that she would be painting Fiona’s eye !  I started following Sheila’s blog and fell in love with her painting style, and how she captures their soul, through their eyes.

SOULOFTHEDOG#15This is the painting she did of my Princess Fiona, she has captured her sweetness and her beauty and I cannot wait to receive the painting.

I can’t forget about Murray, and his mom Molly, who introduced me to Sheila’s work.  Murray is a Golden Doodle, who has his own blog, Murray’s Mouth.

Soulofthedog#2A little bit about Sheila…

Born in Boston, Sheila Wedegis has spent most of her life in the New England area. Sheila relocated to Palm Bay, FL from Portsmouth, NH with her husband, Roger, three cats and her black lab, Sophie and chocolate lab, Fergus. Art has been her passion and expression since she was a child. Her formal training was at Butera School of Art in Boston, however  her greatest growth has been in the actual “doing” …painting what she knows and loves

Through on going studies and workshops, observations and experimentation, there has been a constant rebirth with herself and her work.   While grounding themselves in the realities of her life, Ms. Wedegis’ pieces contain an unmistakable spiritual essence.

“To touch the soul of one other person, to know they are not alone on this journey” is the dedication of her work and the reflection of her life’s journey.


sheila-wedegis-1343391586-logo1

 

Stop by and look at Sheila’s piece’s, I guarantee you will love her work.

Thank you Sheila!

 

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friends · Uncategorized

Will You Be My Valentine?

I am proud to be part of the  “Lovey-Dovey” edition of  Collectively Creative, hosted by Kelly of Cobwebs, Cupcakes & Crayons!

Will You Be My Valentine?

Valentine’s Day is approaching once again, and I am thinking about what Valentine’s Day means to me.  It first became important to me in grade school.  I remember picking out a box of assorted valentines at our locally owner drug store.  I have always attended schools with small class sizes, so one box always was sufficient.  I always looked forward to exchanging Valentine’s Day cards with my friends and classmates.   My mother would help me write everyone’s names on the envelopes and I would sign my name on the back of each card.  I still have all of the Valentines  I gave my mother, she saved every card I gave her in a folder, and gave them to me when I had a place of my own.

The tradition ended in fifth grade, the days when a simple card or a small heart-shaped box of candy that made you smile were over, it now had a new meaning.  It was no longer about friendship and fun, it was for the girls that were dating, my mother would still give me a valentine and that cute little box of candy in the shape of a heart.  Valentine’s Day took a new twist in High School, it was now about big cards, stuffed animals and a big box of candy, if you were dating, and if you weren’t, you would pretend the day didn’t exist.

Valentine’s Day as an adult has an entirely different meaning.  In the beginning of my 20 year relationship it was nice restaurants, fancy flowers and great chocolates, now we are lucky to have the evening off of work.  The day is still special, but in a different way.  The day is not about spending money and giving gifts, but more about making time for each other and giving love.  I have given Don the same Valentine, birthday card and father’s day card for 20 years, he opens it up, says it is the perfect card, sets it on the table and forgets about it.  I put the cards back in my special drawer for next year…….  It is a joke with my friends, and I have a friend that actually beat me on this joke.  My friend gave her husband a card, he read it and set it on the table, she took it back to the store and got her money back, lol.  He never even noticed that the card wasn’t sealed or signed.  Priceless !!

Love is the greatest gift we can give and receive, but it has to be everyday, not just on Valentine’s Day.  The day has become very commercial, with exchanging extravagant gifts and dining in expensive, overly crowded restaurants.  My day will be filled with  kindness, time, compassion, respect, and thoughtfulness to the people I love.

I love you means so much more than three words inscribed on a candy heart.

rugs-bannerIn the last 6 months, I have spent endless hours teaching myself to crochet.  I have been on a mission to find a heart rag rug pattern that wasn’t difficult for beginners and wanted to share my findings with you.

This place mat pattern is free and I added a few extra rows to make it a rug.  The instructions are well written and I was very happy with the results.

h2aI also found a wonderful pattern on Etsy that is also well written and the seller invited me to write if I had any problems.  The only problems I am having with crochet is my own errors, lack of following details and maintaining stitch tension.

h1a

If you have a great heart pattern you would like to share, or if you follow one of the patterns I have provided, please share, I would love to see your creations 🙂

Happy Valentine’s Day

Please visit my fellow bloggers of Collectively Creative:

I Love You More Than… – (Cobwebs, Cupcakes & Crayons)
Heart To Heart – (Pillows A-La-Mode)
Top Ten Romantic Movies of All Time – (The Thinking Closet)
DIY Heart T-Shirt – (NorthStory)
[DIY] 12 Pre-Planned Date Cards – (Inspire and Indulge)
The Love Letters – (Mrs. And The Misc.)
Valentine’s Day Bon Bon’s – (Happy Little Kiwi)
Lovey Dovey School Lunch Ideas – (Time With Thea)
Loving These Products – (Neaten Your Nest)
Kniting Hearts(Gentle Stitches)
A little Lovie magic – (The Thing About Joan)
Sending hugs – (Cul de Sac)
Give a Fortune of Love – (Green Door Hospitality)
Will You Be My Valentine? – (A Ponytail Kind Of Day)
The Lovey-Dovey Edition Logo
friends · Uncategorized

The Spirit of Christmas

The holiday season is typically a time for families to gather round the dinner table, break bread, share stories, and enjoy one another’s company. Unfortunately, not every individual or family is able to partake in the joy of the season due to hard economic times.  I strive in giving back to the community and adopt a family every year, but this year I decided to do something different.

I am very fortunate to be associated with two amazing local businesses, and I received a call asking if I was interested in being part of a Hurricane Sandy fundraiser. I immediately said yes, but since it wasn’t front page news, I, like many, thought this natural disaster was under control and in the rebuilding stages.  I have never been so wrong !!

We decided to start a Hurricane Sandy “Fill A Truck” fundraiser, and then drive the filled truck to an area in need, about four hours away.  I made phone calls for weeks, trying to find a drop area, and every call was a dead-end.  One of the partner businesses is associated with Rotary International and he wrote a letter, asking for assistance in finding a drop area, Rotary International responded immediately with contact names and areas in need.

I started calling the contact people, and I was not prepared for what I would hear, didn’t the papers and the news say that they were in the rebuilding phase?  The first woman I spoke with told me how her group is helping several churches and food pantries and after fifteen minutes on the phone I asked her if she had any damage.  I had no idea that the woman I had been talking to for this length of time had lost everything, her home and business.  She continued to tell me what life has been like for her, living in a house with no power, in the winter, not having a car, both were ruined, but she is focused on helping people who are left fortunate than her.  This is not an isolated story, a post written on December 8 about current conditions, “The debris pile as you enter Seaside Heights is 2 stories high and the size of one or more football fields”.  Visit Rotary International to read more about how you can help.

Our “Fill A Truck” fundraiser is going to be a success, and I am grateful to be a part of such a great community that is willing to help others in need.

In the Spirit of Christmas, reach out and pay it forward.


I’m excited to be a part of this edition of Collectively Creative! The theme for this month is, appropriately, being Joyful.

The Joyful Edition Logo 2012

COLLECTIVELY CREATIVE:

Framing Christmas PJs – (Cobwebs, Cupcakes & Crayons)
J-O-Y to the World – (Pillows A-La-Mode)
How To Display Christmas Cards – (Organized Living Essentials)
Adding Joy to Every Room – (Neaten Your Nest)
The Spirit Of Christmas – (A Ponytail Kind Of Day)
Wrapped In Christmas Lights (Happy Little Kiwi)
Sharing Joy – (Gentle Stitches)
The Joy Of Discovery – (Love, Laughter and a Touch Of Insanity)


prayers[4]
books · candle · craft · crafting · friends · Recycle · Repurpose · Uncategorized · upcycle

Old Book Lamp

Do you have some old books collecting dust and you just don’t know what to do with them?  Why not make a lamp? I make several different ones and this one doesn’t require drilling a hole in the books.

Supplies needed:

  • Old books
  • Candle lamp
  • Doily
  • Glue gun
  • Mod podge or white glue
  • Twigs or vine
  • Old eye glasses

Pick out books that you would like to create the base of your lamp, you can choose as many as you like.  I like to glue the sides of the books with Mod Podge so when I pick up the lamp the books won’t open.  I let the books dry overnight, and when they are dry, I glue the books together, using a hot glue gun.  I glue the doily to the books and then the candle lamp, also using a glue gun.  I like to put some twigs or vines around the base of the lamp and add a pair of old eye glasses, gluing in place.  To add more country charm, add a silicone bulb.  If you would like t make your own silicone bulbs, here is my tutorial.

 

Have you made a book lamp?  I would love to see what you have created, please share your link.

 

 

 

cooking · friends · thanksgiving

Thanksgiving requests

What does celebrating Thanksgiving represent or symbolize to you?

Our Thanksgiving is about family, and our menu is always a family affair. I start thinking about the menu in September, asking family members what they would like this year, I love taking special requests, and my family enjoys having their requests served.  I just spent a wonderful evening with two of my favorite ladies discussing the menu.

I love the holiday; it’s on my top 2 list, Christmas being number 1.   I am totally, 100 percent in it for the turkey, and I look forward to the leftovers.  I tend to overdo, so I was thinking about a simpler menu, but who am I kidding,..  We always had an open door policy for the holidays, so I always make extra.

 Our Menu

 Appetizers – by request

 Main Meal

 Desserts – by request

And more than the food, I am looking forward to spending time with my family and loved ones on such an important day of the year. We have so much to be thankful for, and there is nothing in life like your family.

What’s on your Thanksgiving menu?

I’m excited to be a part of this edition of Collectively Creative! The theme for this month is, appropriately, being Thankful.

COLLECTIVELY CREATIVE:

craft · crafting · DIY · friends · Recycle · Repurpose · shabby · shabby country · Uncategorized · upcycle

Random acts of Sharing

sharing – unselfishly willing to share with others; “a warm and sharing friend”

unselfish – disregarding your own advantages and welfare over those of others

 

Thanksgiving will be here before you know it, and I usually take pause and think about what I am thankful for.  Why am I writing about this now and not closer to Thanksgiving?  In the past month, I have experienced many random acts of sharing, and with the recent events, I decided today was a good day for sharing.

To start, Hurricane Sandy, where folks who were dramatically affected by the storm, as well as others across the nation, are offering time, food, clothes, money and lodging to storm victims who need help. Businesses have supplied disaster recovery areas with food and beverages, as well as pledged millions to help the affected towns rebuild.

I recently went to a friends wedding and at the beginning of their reception, they thanked everyone for coming and sharing their day with them, what a wonderful thing to do.

One of my favorite bloggers celebrated her 1 year anniversary of blogging.  She created a Good Neighbor Award and asked everyone to nominate a fellow blogger that they would like to live next door to, someone to cook/sew/craft/shop/write together, to learn to do something new, to be inspired, or to visit over a cup of tea.  I was incredibly honored to be among the nominees.

I have friends that share their recycling with me.  I know it’s easier to just to put it on the curb, but to save it and give it to me, knowing that I will be repurposed, I am thankful.

I met a woman the other day, a perfect strangers, in a parking lot.  We met so I could buy some vintage Christmas bulbs that she had for sale, and another woman was there, doing the same thing.  I don’t remember how the conversation began, but we started talking about decorating and silicone light bulbs and how expensive they were.  The other woman, shared with me, how to make them yourself, and explained what I needed to use and how to do it. This simple act of kindness is the main reason for my blog today.  If she only knew that she would open up my creative side and that is all I would think of for days.  Thank you Helen!

How to make silicone light bulbs

Things You’ll Need:

  • Clear silicone caulk for outdoors, about 3 dollars
  • Small disposable bowl
  • night  light bulb, dollar store
  • wire or paper clip
  • metal hanger
  • Caulk gun
  • Scissors
Silicone bulbs usually cost about 3 dollars for 2, I made 12 for 6 dollars, and have enough silicone for many more.

Prepare the Silicone:

I placed my tube by the wood stove to warm it up.

Cut the tubing tip and squeeze the silicone into the disposable bowl,  I used an old sour cream container with a lid.

Do not stir the silicone, I tapped it on the counter to remove air bubbles and to settle the silicone.

Making the bulb:

Screw the bulb in the socket to test and make sure it works. Remove the bulb.

Wrap wire around the metal part of the bulb. Make sure the wire is holding the bulb securely.

Submerge the bulb in the center of the silicone until you have only the metal part of the bulb showing.

Pull the bulb out of the mixture,  simply pull straight out. Do not pull fast,  a slow pull will give you a long tip that is important to the look of your bulb.

Hang them by the wire on the hanger. Do not allow the bulbs to touch each other or anything else. Allow to dry three hours, and cure for 24 hours.

If you look closely, you will be able to see the difference between my first try and how they improved as I dipped more bulbs.  I added cinnamon to the silicone to add an aged look.

And the bulbs finished

In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out. It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being. We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit.
Albert Schweitzer

craft · crafting · DIY · friends · Recycle · Repurpose

Finally……

It feels great that I can finally take a breath and catch up with my “blogging” friends, I have missed reading all of your creative blogs.

I finally had the pleasure of going to lunch with my friend Val, and we talked forever.  Val sent me home with her “recycling”, and she has great recycling, take a look !!

Image

These are going to make wonderful gifts, especially the bottles with the porcelain stoppers.  I forgot the take a picture of the 3 wine bottles, ooops.  Thanks Val, you have the best recycling !

I am very excited that Thanksgiving is just around the corner, I am trying some new recipes and will be cooking for days, one of my favorite times of the year.

It feels great to be blogging again 🙂  Look for my daily blog, I am back !