Aug 27, 2013

My Home

As per usual, I always warn my dear blog readers when I'm about to share a personal post - consider yourself warned.  No crafts today just the words that have been bouncing around in my heavy heart, they need a landing place.  Continue reading if you'd like but if you comment, please be kind.  


One night, about three weeks ago, I woke up in the middle of the night feeling very unsettled.  I had just had a bad dream.  Not a scary dream just a very unsettling dream.  In my dream I had been away and upon returning found out that my home had been destroyed - removed might be a better description as there was nothing there, just a bare spot that had once been a home.  My family, Mr. K and the girls, were safe but everything else was lost.  We went to the site of our home hoping to find something.  Anything.  As we surveyed the site though, it was pretty hopeless.  The site was completely bare.  No remains of a structure anywhere.  There was nothing left.  I was just about to give up when I looked up and saw a small marble plaque I had purchased on a family trip when I was 13, it was just sitting on top of the dirt like it had been there all along.  It was clean, unharmed and untouched. The plaque, which is a real thing, is special to me because it was the first bigger ticket item I purchased with my own money and it has a carved picture of Christ on it. I've kept this plaque by my bed since I was 13.  I remember feeling such a sadness and despair in my dream - my home was gone.  The feeling in the dream was deep rooted in sorrow and then when I found my plaque, even though everything else was gone and I had no home, there was a feeling of hope and joy.

I woke up carrying both the feeling of despair and joy with me and I laid awake feeling completely unsettled  for a long time. I couldn't sleep so I tried to analyze it but couldn't make any sense of it.  Eventually I fell back to sleep.  I was still thinking about it in the morning though and so I decided to write the dream down. I put it in my journal and then I went about my day and quickly forgot all about that dream.

Three weeks later, as I read what I had recorded in my journal,  I understand that dream so much more clearly.  I wonder a lot about that dream and why I had it.  Did my subconscious know what was coming? Was it a spiritual experience?  Was I being prepared for something?  Was it a message about the bigger picture in life and eternity?  Was it a reminder to get my priorities straight?  I think I know the answer but I will keep those thoughts to myself.

So what's the importance of this dream?  Well, since my home in the dream was removed let me tell you about my concept of home.


This man, my dad, he has always been my home.

Having split my life as a kid between two physical homes and communities, neither of which I really felt rooted in, I always just associated the actual idea of "Home" as being wherever he was.  Home to me wasn't a physical structure, it was just him.  He was my home.  He was where I belonged.  He was where I was loved.  Even after I got married and created a life with my husband, had kids, moved a few times and now, even being settled in Colorado, when I'm asked about "home", it's still my dad.

I got word a few weeks ago that something wasn't right and he wasn't doing well, then a week later he got admitted into the hospital and for five days we, as a family, surrounded him and loved him the best we could but we knew it wasn't good.  The reality of the situation was heavy and on Saturday my Dad, my home, left this earth.

I did pretty good most of the week, my emotions were certainly always on the surface and the tears flowed regularly but it wasn't until Saturday, just an hour before he left us, that the reality of my home being gone actually hit.  I literally broke down and I couldn't deal with the loneliness that weighed so heavy on my heart. I tried to run away from it.  I wanted to escape the pain and I didn't want to face reality.  It was so hard.

As I look back to last week and even to just three days ago when he passed, I find it interesting that all along there was a sense of peace that was partnered with the pain.  It's so hard to explain.  I hurt so bad, the pain was definitely more dominate yet at the same time, I had a great sense of peace, too.  Life is temporary.  I know this, I always have, but the relationships we create, even if the person isn't physically with us, continues on.  Much like in my dream, when I found my plaque with the picture of Christ on it, and felt relief, it's the same for me now.  I find relief and joy in my belief that even though this life is temporary, families are eternal. And, it's through Christ that it is possible that I will be able to be with my dad again, and then, when it's time, we will both be home!


"Where we love is home - home that our feet may leave, 
but not our hearts!"  - Oliver Wendell Holmes


Aug 20, 2013

Winner!

I have so much to write.  I have a post that I've started and deleted and started again.  Finally I just decided to save that post and info for another day and just announce the winner of the ornament.  The tutorial will come but for now....


Congrats to....

MARY L!

Mary was the lucky winner and will get the ornament above.  
(Mary, email me)


Also, just as a quick announcement, my family is dealing with some heavy things right now.  Lots of sadness and worry and stress.  My posts will be sparse for the next little while I process and deal with all that is happening.  Thank you for understanding and for continuing to be apart of my blog family.  I will share details when I'm ready.

Thanks!

Aug 5, 2013

Christmas Ornament Giveaway


I was in a local craft store last week and it was all deck out like Christmas was here.  I'm sure this is happening where you live too.  To be honest I kind of feel bad for the employees of those stores, they have to deal with Christmas overload for 5 months before it really truly is the Christmas season.  It must throw them off a bit.  And, while I feel bad for them, I couldn't help but wonder if people are already gearing up for the holidays?  I mean, do those $500 fake Christmas trees at Hobby Lobby really sell in August?  Seems odd.

The whole idea has made me curious, are you an early shopper?  Do you shop for Christmas presents and decorations in August?

My niece starts early on her gift shopping and is usually done by mid-September.  I like that idea, it seems budget friendly and on-the-ball but it's really not me.  There is something about waiting until the 90 degree temps are long gone before I start Christmas shopping.  I like that.  I like shopping in sweaters and even snow.

While I may not shop early, I do like to dream up decor ideas and make ornaments.  Case in point, I made the ornament above last week.  It's August and snow was no where to be found, instead we were having heavy rain and a tornado watch but I enjoyed making it anyway.  

Do you want it?  I'll happily send it to one of my readers.

Just tell me two things:  When do you start shopping/creating for Christmas and if you'd be interested in seeing a tutorial on how to make the ornament.

Easy enough right?

I'll take comments until Friday, August 9th. And be sure to leave a way to contact you - I've had giveaways before where the winner never claims their prize because they didn't leave a way for me to contact them - so sad - don't be that person.

Aug 3, 2013

Deal Of The Day - Chevron Goodness!


I'm not sure if this is happening where you live but for us we are just two weeks out before school starts.  TWO WEEKS!  I think summers are getting shorter!  What this all means is that we are knee deep into back-to-school prep.

We've been clearing out closets.  Re-evaluating clothing needs and shopping a bit.  As we gear up for the beginning of school I have had a few requests from my Miss M.  She kind of sets the fashion standards around our home and one thing she wants is some fun new necklaces.  I made her one by accident yesterday, she happily stole (with my permission of course) the necklace I did a tutorial on.  But she also asked for chevron necklace of some sort.  Chevron is all hip and happen these days.  Yes, chevron seems to be everywhere so it was pretty easy for me to meet her request.

The problem is I kind of lost control and didn't just make one.

I made many.

We don't need many.

So, here's the deal - the deal of the day!


I have 5 round Chevron pendant necklaces in various colors and 


5 small rectangle Chevron pendant necklaces in various colors that need new homes.

They are listed and ready to ship from my shop and I'm selling them for a discounted price of only $13.50.  Be warned though, I only have one of each color so if you see it, and you want it, grab it!  I don't plan on making more for awhile. 




DIY Simple Necklace Tutorial



I woke up early this morning and was playing around with my jewelry stash.  I should have been sleeping in, it is Saturday after all but this body of mine is aging and sleeping in is just something it doesn't do anymore.  Sad!  However, the benefit of it all is I had a quiet house to work in and lots of creativity swirling in my brain.  As a result I made this and a few others like it and was having fun just creating.  I liked it but knew I had done something good when Miss M came into the room and said "Oh, I'm stealing that!"  I guess if she likes it, it means it's good enough to do a tutorial on, right?

So, want to make your own?  Here's how. 

It's super simple.



Here's what you need:


1- Head pin with a loop on the end
5- small beads in the color of your choice
2- piece of chain, 9 inches long each
4 - little jump rings
1- medium sized jump ring
1- Lobster claw clasp

Plus, you will also need Needle nose pliers and wire cutters


Step 1:  Put your beads on your head pin.  

Quick Tip:  I chose 5 beads, you can chose any number you'd like but just keep in mind that odd numbers tend to look better.  So, go with 3, 5 or 7 for the best end result.


Step 2:  Using your pliers, make a 90 degree bend just past the last bead.  You should have something that looks like the photo above.


Step 3:  After you make your bend, pinch your long piece near the bend, and wrap the wire around one tip of your needle nose pliers.  (sorry, the photo doesn't show this very well) 
  

Step 4:  Using your wire cutters, cut off the excess wire and then using your needle nose pliers again, clean up, and close the loop.


When you are done, you should have something like is shown above with two loops on each end. 


Step 5:  Next, it's time attach your chain.  First, attach a small jump ring to the loop on one end of your bead bar.  Before you close your jump ring, thread it through the last loop on one of your chain pieces.  This will connect your chain to your bead bar.  When you get one end done, repeat the steps and do the other end.  Make sure that your jump rings are closed tightly.


When you have both ends attached to your chain it will look like the photo above.


Step 6:  We're almost done.  Now you just have to add the findings to the other end of your chain so it turns it into a necklace.  To do this, attach your small jump rings to the end of your chain pieces.  Then on one jump ring, attach the larger jump ring and on the other, attach your lobster claw.  


When you are done, your necklace closure will look like the photo above.


Step 7:  Put it on and wear it proudly - so cute!  And, honestly, it's really, really simple to make which makes it all that much more fun!  


You can make them with any color, or style, of beads.  I tend to like them all one color and I prefer the more stone like beads, but you can make them with multiple colors and you can even use seed beads or pearls.  Lots of variations here.

And, here's a fun one if you are LDS and have girls in the Young Women's program.


You can make a Value theme necklace using all the Young Women colors.  In fact, you could have the girls make them themselves for an activity night.  They are easy and pretty low cost to make so it would make a great activity.