Friday, May 27, 2011

In Progress

Hello Everyone!
I know that's it's been awhile since my last update. I have quite a few projects that are incomplete and I don't usually like sharing until it's all done and pretty (assuming it turns out pretty). I've spent some of my sewing time on projects that haven't worked out. I haven't decided whether or not I will show you those projects. Let's just say that purses and accessories are much easier to me than clothes.

As for projects in progress, I am re-working my sewing corner... again. Originally the plan was to curtain off this section since it's in my dining area, but the more I add to it and the more I use it, the more I am loving this space and don't want to hide what is such a part of me. My husband is so amazing about this, too. He's encouraging me to show this part of me, mess and all. I haven't fully decided on the curtain or not, but here's some in progress pictures.

First, here's a Mother's Day gift that had to go into my sewing corner. I stumbled across Kelly Rae Roberts's artwork at our local Carlton Cards and immediately was drawn to it. I often stop in the store just to look at the four foot section of her products on display. I love the colors, the mixed media, the quaint sayings (one reminds me to wear more skirts - I like it!) and the general "feel" of it all. I had such a hard time choosing, but I chose this one because the color mix kept drawing me.

Kelly Rae just launched her new online store, but doesn't ship internationally. Pout. Pout. I am hoping that Carlton Cards will carry more of her products over time.

Next show 'n' tell item: my new cabinet. I received this lovely piece for FREE! It needed shelves, but the cabinet itself was FREE! This was such a great find and it's working out great so far. Again, the initial plan was to hang a curtain on the front (and I still might), but the color stacks are making me quite happy right now.

Bins, bins and more bins. I was looking for fabric drawers for the cubbies, but haven't found a really great deal as of yet. Well, after my birthday spa party, I had all these basins stacked in storage and with a little trim (thanks to my David for cutting the lip of seven bins!) they work great.

I have labels ready and waiting to be attached. I am thinking clear packing tape, which I don't have right now.

And finally, here's a sneak peak at my progress on my picnic blanket. I am loving how this is turning out and would love to have an entire day to sew and sew and sew. In the meantime, it's coming along and may not be finished as soon as I like, but will be worth the wait!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

I Lied in Pre-Marital Counseling!

One of the first things I 'warned' David about myself in pre-marital counseling was that I was not domestic. I truly believed that I was telling him the truth and that I was doing him a favour by warning him so far in advance. A keep-your-expectations-low kind of warning. Well, guess what... I am domestic! This was such a huge revelation to me. I'll tell you how I found this out and why I've changed my story.

My dear friend, Jenni, bought me a GREAT book for my birthday. The Gentle Art of Domesticity by Jane Brocket is a delightful book that I was sad to finish reading.
As I was reading this book, I felt like someone finally understood what I hadn't been able to put into words about how I feel about the domestic arts. I didn't even know that that's what they were called. Here, let Jane explain it to you:
There is a world of difference between domesticity and domestication. this book is about domesticity and the pleasures and joys of the gentle domestic arts of knitting, crochet, baking stitching, quilting, gardening and homemaking. It is emphatically not about the repetitive, endless rounds of cleaning, washing, ironing, shopping and house maintenance that come with domestication. Domesticity rises above the bossiness of cleaning products and media exhortations to keep our houses pristine and hygienic, and focuses instead on creativity within the domestic space.
Domesticity gives us the opportunity to express ourselves, and the gentle arts are the most satisfying and achievable means of doing so.
(practicing the domestic art of crochet)

Jane also shares that it took her years to discover that she was "thoroughly domestic, and only grudgingly domesticated". I found her insights liberating and exciting. I suddenly felt the freedom to quit apologizing for not putting top priority on housework and admit that I find other things more satisfying and important. Yes, housework, to some degree, must be done. No, I don't obsess over unswept floors, dusty furniture and fingerprinted windows and mirrors. These endless, repetitive tasks take so much valuable time away from living. I am blessed to have a husband who encourages my creativity and gives me the freedom to explore homemaking outside of the society measurements. If I spend an afternoon sewing instead of cleaning, David lovingly compliments my accomplishments and overlooks what didn't get done. How blessed am I?!?!

I don't think we ever put it into a philosophy or anything, but Jane Brocket explains how I feel about it:
Domesticity is not synonymous with housework. In fact, I think there is too much media bossiness about cleanliness and tidiness these days, and nowhere near enough celebration of the joys of homemaking.
... I would argue that many of us are far happier in a more fluid state of domesticity with a certain degree of mess and disorder, and a more realistic and welcoming environment that reflects the busyness and creativity of its occupants. We may aspire to magazine-perfect interior, but, deep down, we know that the price to be paid in mental anguish and impossible effort, not to mention the deterioration of relations within the household, is far too high.
(Thanks, Patty~Jean! I love working with this yarn!)

There is so much I could share from her book, but I could get charged with breech of copyright, so I'll just suggest that you read it yourself. The local library is a great place to check it out if you're not ready to commit. I must warn you, you might want to buy several copies of this book by the time you're done. Just ask my friend, Jenni. Thanks for knowing me so well that you knew I would love this book!

 You can also get a regular dose of domesticity on Jane's blog, Yarnstorm.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The Beginning Two

One of my birthday presents, from my David, was the first two rings in my stacking family ring set. I have been so excited about these rings ever since I first saw them at Olive Bungalow. I wanted a family ring that I could have now, but isn't limited to the size of family that we currently have. If we have more children, I don't want to have to replace my whole ring. These custom stacking rings are the perfect solution!

The first two rings represent myself (the one with the birthstone) and Jesus (He is the vine). I will be adding another single gemstone ring to represent David and finally a double gemstone ring to represent Abigail and Malachi. That's four rings for now. They're nice and compact, so I'm not concerned about adding additional ones later.

 The packaging was so cute that I had to share that, too!

Michele has been quite busy with orders, but my rings were finished and shipped quite quickly. I won't say much for the US Postal Service, but they're finally here and I love them!

Sunday, May 1, 2011


Thank you for all the lovely comments and birthday wishes. I am pleased to announce the winner of my giveaway. Our random number generator result:

Congratulations, Jenny! I'll bring you your prize this week. By the way, I did keep a journal for myself and I love to share, so I hope you enjoy it!