Friday, January 18, 2013

Things in Order

You know, that twilight time before truly waking up? You stay perfectly still wondering if it’s time to get up or if you can fudge a few minutes longer. For me, it’s then the really weird dreams happen. What seems like a complete dream happens within a blink of an eye – had one been open!
That happened to me this morning. The only thing I remember about it was an unknown voice telling me: “Get your things in order.”
Maybe because sometimes I feel like I'm going against the wind:
I didn’t feel sad or anything other than matter-of-fact. It’s simply the sense I woke up with. I need to get my things in order…I guess for the next chapter of my life or less clutter for the continuation of this one? 
Which ever the case, it wouldn’t hurt me one bit to get my things in order.

Then I'll start writing and sewing again!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

On Second Thought

Pantone's Color of the Year ~ Emerald ~ is such a lovely shade of green. On their website, they write:
Lively. Radiant. Lush… A color of elegance and beauty that enhances our sense of well-being, balance and harmony.

I certainly agree with this assessment!

The 2012’s color Tango didn’t excite me like 2011’s Honeysuckle and now the Emerald. Although I did use a bit of Tango in some of the doll dresses created last year, I couldn’t really get into the color. Much unlike the Honeysuckle and the plan for Emeralds!

Character "Emily" wore a beautiful emerald dress on the #2.11 episode of Revenge, "Sabotage". I thought it very posh of Revenge designers to incorporate Pantone’s CotY into their costumes! I had to laugh at myself because I knew Emerald was the color of the year!

My goodness. I had a rude awakening this morning! I thought it would be fun to have an official “swatch” from Pantone, even thought of going back to 2010 (when I officially started Lanetta’s Creations) and getting one for each year.

They want $9.95 EACH, plus $4.50 SH!

On second thought, I’ll spend the money on some beautiful Emerald fabric! At least, what I think is "Emerald" as there are so many shades of greens out there!!!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

On my own

When asked to be a speaker before plus or minus 200 women, and a handful of men, I know it’s an honor. I know this. It’s still frightening as all get out! When asked to give a book review on my own book, Where Forever Begins, A Simple Love Story, how or where do I begin?

I’m not a public speaker. In fact, the last time I did something before a much smaller group, I had a panic attack during the presentation! Or, maybe it was a gigantic hot flash? Rather doubt that excuse. No, I realized later I forgot to breathe! Seriously folks!

Last week, I asked my niece for help. Dr. Leslie gives presentations around the world – literally – and I couldn’t think of a better person to ask. My thoughts were all over the place, I needed help getting organized. I needed any tips she could offer me. A specific one she gave: don’t forget to breathe!

I’m practicing.

She also recommended I simply tell my story… not necessarily the story found within the pages of the book, but how/why I even started page one.

All those wonderful, sometimes eerie, memories are starting to come back.

This week I’ve done a little googling. Yes. Googling. I know MSWord it isn’t a word, but it should be. I basically wanted to know what’s included in a “book review” in order to give the organizers what they asked for, first and foremost.

(I cannot recommend this site enough. I’ve used it over and over again for many years. It’s an amazing resource for any writing. Period.)

A book review gives readers

1.   a sneak peek at what a book is like,
2.     whether or not the reviewer enjoyed it,
3.     and details on purchasing the book.

Well, number 2 is quite obvious. Why else would I have spent four years writing it?

Number 3 is easy.

It’s the number 1 – how much do I share?

The way to good writing is keeping the reader wanting to turn the page, not put the book down at all …. Forget sleeping, eating…

Because the review is on my own book, I need to give just enough sneak peek to peak folk's interest to buy the book, to turn those pages! That’s the fine line I’m walking….

Everything happens for a reason, in its own time.

This time last year or the year before, or before it, had I received this invitation, I would not have accepted. This invitation is timely and fits within my Twenty13 goals to get out from behind my sewing machines & laptop, and become more involved in the community and meet challenges!

Yes! I can do this!

I'm practicing!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Blessed Rain

It’s been a long time since we’ve had a good soaking rain around here. The stock tank was beginning to look pitiful. Praise the Lord! We are getting the blessed rain needed! Isn’t this a pretty picture?!?
I went to Dallas on Sunday with the primary purpose of taking down and packing up my parents’ Christmas decorations. My St. Louis niece, Dr. Leslie, whom I hadn’t seen in over a year, would also be in Dallas on a visit during this time. Between the two of us, we got them all done ~ and stored away until next year ~ by noon on Monday! Yes!

She went back to Missouri and I returned to the ranch yesterday afternoon. I had had it planned not to return home until this morning. It all changed once I saw the massive storm predictions. I drove through pouring down rain taking her to the airport and the drive back to the Dallas house. Sheets of rain. But then it slacked up as I loaded the vehicle! Another, Praise the Lord!

The rain was not bad on the way back home. Off and on it was heavy, but nothing like I experienced driving to the airport in Dallas! Then, the closer I got to the ranch, the less need for the windshield wipers!

As I came to the low water crossing, then began to climb the hill on the "house side", I prayed out loud:

Thank you, Dear God for getting me home safely.
Please, now let the bottom drop out! Amen!

It warms my heart when God answers prayers the way I'd hoped! 

The "Low Water Crossing"
I hope those who are in need, are also getting the Blessed Rain!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Twelfth Day of Christmas

I so get this one! On the Twelve Day of Christmas, my true love gave to me, Twelve Drummers Drumming … can you hear the drum roll? The Twelve Points of Belief in the Apostles’ Creed! This is what Christmas is all about, the reason for the season:

1. I believe in God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth:
2. And in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord:
3. Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary:
4. Suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, dead and buried: He descended into hell:
5. The third day he rose again from the dead:
6. He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty:
7. From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead:
8. I believe in the Holy Ghost:
9. I believe in the holy catholic church: the communion of saints:
10. The forgiveness of sins:
1l. The resurrection of the body:
12. And the life everlasting. Amen.

Photo Source: Whim Quarterly

I hope you enjoyed the Twelve Days of Christmas series I did this year as much as I enjoyed researching and writing about them! I learned much about the symbolism used in the song ~ especially what they are and what I had always thought they were (five golden rings for example!). It was a good refresher and reinforcement of my core beliefs. Although not a “religious” person, I am a spiritual one.

For me, it is now time to take down and pack up the decorations around the house! I’m very grateful I didn’t have the time to put up many decorations, so it won’t take long to put away!

For me, it is way past time to get organized! I will admit, I let lots of things go around here way before Thanksgiving in a rush to get ready for the last Christmas Trade Show that ended up not happening for me due to a personal emergency! I had several custom special orders (which I’m not complaining about one bit, and thank you again everyone!) to get out, then creating my own Christmas gifts to give.

For me, it is time to make a list, actually make several different lists – one for each goal and what I need to do in order to accomplish said goal ….  Now where did I stash the index cards?

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Eleventh Day of Christmas

On the Eleventh Day of Christmas, my true love gave to me ~ Eleven Pipers-Piping. It’s an interesting symbolism between the Pipers Piping and the Eleven faithful disciples. Now I can get this one.

Have you heard of the Purpose Fairy? I started following her on Facebook a while back. I’ve been to her website often and have never been disappointed. Among all of them, she has this particular blog post “11 Things You Should Start Doing for Yourself Today” that I highly recommend!

Just by the headings alone, I hope she will inspire you to read what she says about:
  1. Start breathing properly, softly and deeply
  2. Let go of your personal history – enjoy the present
  3. Let go of all those things that no longer serve you
  4. Forgive yourself for past mistakes
  5. Forgive all those people who have hurt you
  6. Release all judgments you have placed upon yourself and others
  7. Expect the best from life
  8. Nurture the relationship you have with yourself and others
  9. Start treating yourself as you would want others to treat you
  10. Start to nurture your mind, body, heart and spirit
  11. Develop an attitude of gratitude

Source: Purpose Fairy's Facebook page!

Now, for a little crafty inspiration, this clever person made her own ink stamp! Okay, I’m adding this to my list of things I want to learn how to do!
Click on the picture and it will open up her site!

Make your own stamp!!!
How clever is this?!?

Friday, January 4, 2013

Tenth Day of Christmas

On the Tenth Day of Christmas, my true love gave to me Ten Lords-a-Leaping. This phrase certainly symbolizes the Ten Commandments. I found a very nice, informative article about the Ten Commandments while searching for a photo or graphic to share. I’m not sure of the proper photo credit, but it was with the article by Indy Bikehiker (John Franklin Hay).

A couple of weeks before Christmas, I looked and looked for a “bed cape” pattern that I liked well enough to sew up for my mother. I only found lovely crocheted or knitted ones, but I had about two yards of fleece I wanted to use. It was in my mind to make something such as a bed cape, but not really for bed. I wanted something she could throw around her shoulders to keep that nasty draft off the back of her neck or hitting her chest as she piddled around the house or relaxed in her recliner.

Without a specific pattern, I began to cut, try on, adjust and cut some more! I hope the following progress pictures will inspire you to simply go for it!

I folded the fabric & started cutting out the neckline, tried it on, then adjusted some more

I then measured/marked around from the neckline for the length, making it a tad longer in the back & cut

The marking isn't rocket science!
With the large scrap piece left over, I cut out a section to go as a lapel

I wanted "points" to be at the bottom front of the shoulder cape

I pinned the straight edge of the "lapel" to the front edges of the cape
I then cut one piece from the left over fabric about 9" x 60" and folded in half lengthwise
and stitched to the neck opening, leaving the ends of the tie "free"
To add a bit more of points, I trimmed the ends of the collar/necktie into points -
like one would do ribbon.
NOTE: The neckline seam is not layer trimmed, or did I stitch it down like "normal" - just left it be!
It was never my intention to put a "normal" hem on the cape, but I wanted something,
so I used a decorative stitching all around.
Momma likes it!
(I should have taken a picture when she had the ties tied! Oh well!)
And, it swoops down in the back just enough to make it "dainty" !!!
Try working with some fleece! It's nice to work with!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Ninth Day of Christmas

On the ninth Day of Christmas, my true love gave to me, Nine Ladies Dancing! Now this I can see why the author of Twelve Days of Christmas depicts ladies dancing and celebrating the Nine Fruits of the Holy Spirit.

Paul shared the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit when he wrote to the Galatians:

Love ~ Joy
Peace ~ Patience
Kindness ~ Goodness
Gentleness ~ Self-control

(Galatians 5:22-23 ESV)

Source: Simply Homemade

Although this is a cake wrap, I can envision other uses with the technique. With a bit of supplies, a printer, and lots of patience, wouldn’t this be a lovely way to share/preserve memories?

I’ve added this to my “to-do” list! How about you? Will you try it?

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Eighth Day of Christmas

Within the song Twelve Days of Christmas, today we get to the Eight Maids-a-Milking, the first “active” symbolism which represents the Eight Beatitudes. We can find the blessings, the set of teachings by Jesus, in Matthew5:3-10.

I found this interesting 2009 photo depicting Eight Maids-a-Milking. Someone took it while visiting the Butchart Gardens, located near Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. I glanced over other beautiful pictures taken there and wondered if any of my readers have ever actually visited the gardens?!?

I can only imagine how breathtaking it must be in person!

One of my 2013 goals is landscaping a large section of our yard. We have about an acre within the fence, with the house sitting in the middle. The east side is “his” – with the barn, ranch equipment, and car park. The west side will be the “gardens” I’ve always wanted and only dabbled with here and there. The Butchart Gardens, and the Dallas Arboretum, are my inspirations.

Living in a drought area of Texas, I must keep a Xeriscape landscape focus – without using cactus! Google images provide great visuals to get the juices flowing! I also try and watch the PBS show, Central Texas Gardener, or read over their website, for ideas, tips, and what to do when.
We constructed the Keyhole Garden in 2012.
The area, the corner of the yard behind the Keyhole is where I'm talking about!
It may not happen in 2013, but it is my hope to eventually stroll through the garden, sit among the flowers and greenery, and do handwork, or read, or crochet, or write – or pray.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Seventh Day of Christmas

Happy New Year Everyone!

The song, Twelve Days of Christmas, has Seven Swans-a-Swimming for the seventh day, depicting the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. I found the gifts listed in Romans 12:6-8 (NIV):

We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us.
If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith;
if it is serving, then serve;
if it is teaching, then teach;
if it is to encourage, then give encouragement;
if it is giving, then give generously;
if it is to lead, do it diligently;
if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.

Many years ago, I did a cross-stitch for Mother that reads:

What we are is God’s gift to us.
What we become is our gift to God.
Eleanor Powell

Although I haven’t in a long time, I love doing cross-stitch projects. I have several pieces started. One of the goals I’ve set for 2013 will be to finish them (whenever hands permit)! Some I will offer through Lanetta’s Creations, others will be Christmas gifts for family and friends.

Did you set “goals” or make any “resolutions” today? Which do you do? What’s number one?

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