Monday, February 27, 2012

Lent Hats week 1

Just wanted to share the hats I made the first week of Lent.  If you missed the post about why I am making hats you can read it here. 


The first hat is Gayle's Baby Hat, there is a blanket to match

hat 2 is the Baby Stripes Hat by Julee Reeves

Hat 3 is the Rib Knit baby hat by Jennifer Sauselein

and hat 4 is the Baby Bunny Newborn or Preemie hat by Jennifer Dickerson

All are available free through Ravelry.  Hope you are having a great week!
Until next time,

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Lent

I have to be honest.  I have never fasted anything for Lent.  I never really understood it.  I didn't grow up in a church and the churches I attended/attend as an adult don't "officially" do Lent.  I heard people talk about it in general terms but it wasn't until recently that I really began to understand what Lent was about.  So, here is what I learned.  In a nutshell the season of Lent is about becoming closer to Jesus through fasting (self-discipline for a spiritual goal), prayer, and giving back.  These are things that I should be doing all year, but this is a time to especially focus on it.

Fasting:  after a lot of self-examination I have decided to give up the internet for all but an hour a day.  (The hour is necessary due to an online Bible study I am participating in as well as checking email for communications with customers and teachers.)  The internet is my biggest time waster and I to often get on to just check something "real quick" only to discover it has been much longer than I thought.  I will have to more be diligent about what I do and focus on what really NEEDS to be done online rather than wasting time.

Prayer:  I seem to do better with prayer when I journal, so I have pulled out my prayer journal again.  I have become the gal who throws up the quick prayer whenever something pops into my head but I don't really spend time in deliberate prayer.  I hope to work on that these next 40 days.  I will also be reading 40 Days With Jesus: Celebrating His Presence during this time.

Giving back:  My goal is to make 40 hats to donate to God's Tiny Angels during this season.  Since I won't be on the computer as much I should have more than enough time to complete this task.

So if you don't "see" me around the internet as much, at least you will know why.  I am hoping that this will help me to draw closer to God and as a result I can feel more peace, which is my goal for the year.    Do you participate in Lent?  If so, I would love for you to share what you are doing so I can pray for you.

Until next time,

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Salt dough pendant

Have you ever played with salt dough?  It's a great, inexpensive, tactile crafty product that I can almost garuantee you have everything to make it in your kitchen already!  (If you don't then you should!)  What do you need?
2 parts flour
1 part table salt
water

That's it!  I used 1/2 cup flour, 1/4 cup salt and then added just enough water to form a dough that resembled pie crust and we were able to make these:

as well as a few smaller hearts.  (The impatient mom tried to turn them into necklaces and ended up breaking them when trying to force the ribbon through the hole!)

Just knead the dough roll it out or shape it then either bake it at 250 F until completely dry or stick it in your dehydrator overnight (which is what I did).  For the silver pendant

 I used one of my rubber stamps to get the floral impression then used a tooth pick to poke the word peace in it.  Painted with regular acrylic silver paint.  Once dry I watered down some black paint, applied it and let it sit for a minute or so and then gently rubbed the high spots.  Allow this to dry and seal with a spray polyurethane, sealer, or even nail polish!  It is deceptively light.

This is a great craft medium for the kids, but it's also fun for adults.  Look at some of the creations I found on the net:

Salt dough Fairy Door

 
DSCF0335
these are EARRINGS!

What are you waiting for?  Go raid your cabinets!
Until next time,

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day 2012

Hope everyone is having a wonderful Valentine's Day today.  Just wanted to drop a quick thought your way to remind you that whether you are with a special someone or not, you are LOVED!



Until next time,

Monday, February 13, 2012

Staying in the Peace

I have tried to write this post several times explaining why I have chosen this particular verse this week.  Each time it became a very long, and even more importantly, a very personal post.  Every time I ended up deleting it.  What I had thought was going to be a personal quest to find peace has just become a quest to find peace when things get turned upside down and the dreams you had for another are at best put on hold and at worst gone forever.  I don't feel comfortable saying more than that at this time because while the situation could have a HUGE impact on me and my household, it isn't my story to tell. 

After finding that out yesterday I was amazed at how I was able to maintain peace.  Am I upset?  Yes.  Disappointed? Definately.  But what is done is done and rather than dwell on it, I am chosing to give the situation to God and move forward.  This weeks verse reminds me that peace is not something that I can get on my own.  It is a gift that I recieve when I chose to surrender.  This world is full of things that are not peaceful and I can chose to live in the world or to live in the one who has overcome!


So despite the news from yesterday, despite having my 3 year old spew all over herself, the store and me today while grocery shopping (she wasn't sick when we left the house I promise!) and despite everything else the world continues to throw at me, I am taking heart and staying in the peace!

Until next time,

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Conversation Heart Printable

This has been on my to-do list for years, ever since I saw this post on the Creative Ladies Ministry.  I finally (yes, I know it's last minute!) created this:

So what is it you ask?  It is a wrapper for those little boxes of conversation hearts that you can pick up EVERYWHERE this time of year.  This one in particular I know fits the sweetheart boxes sold in 4 packs at the dollar tree because that is what I used to make the template.  If your box is slightly bigger or smaller this will still work because there is extra on the left side of the image that can be glued under allowing it to grow some and you can always trim it down if needed for a smaller box. 

These would be great to pass out at church (I know it's tomorrow but this post will be here for years and years so someone in like 2019 may see it in time to actually buy the boxes, print all the templates, cut them out and glue them onto the boxes in time to hand out on Valentine's weekend), give as valentines in class, or use as a witnessing tool.  Feel free to use it as you please.  These will print two to a page and if you want to print them out I suggest you open the pdf file so that the scale is accurate. 

Until next time,

Friday, February 10, 2012

Sour Grapes

Many of the women at my church started a new weight loss program and are losing lots of weight quickly with very little effort. It's one of those "all natural" supplement programs and they are getting some really great results. Start up is over $200 a month. That is WAY outside of my price range.

With their weight loss though, I found myself fighting the green monster,

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then depression because I wasn't getting results as quickly,

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then anger that I was HURTING physically from my exercising (need I say that my muscles are totally rebelling at doing even the basic forms of strength training?).

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I haven't lost weight in about 2 weeks and I found myself praying for God to just give me even a small change in the scale because i was getting so discouraged with it all. Now I don't mean just a little prayer as I step on the scale, I mean some serious prayers ... with tears and everything.

Then, during my Bible study time, He responded to my prayer,  Not with what I wanted, but an answer that I needed. In Isaiah 5 the people are doing their own thing. Not so much that it was the wrong thing as much as it was they were doing it without GOD. The chapter begins with an analogy of God preparing and planting a vineyard that He expected to produce fine, sweet grapes only to get sour, wild grapes.


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He compares His people to the wild grapes. They didn't become what He had envisioned and went on to do their own things. Then you get to Isaiah 5:19 where they are mocking God saying "Hurry up and do something! QUICK show (me) what you can do. (I) want to see what you have planned." What a huge awakening for me! I have gotten so wrapped up in what the scale says (which isn't a bad thing in and of itself) that I have left out God! He has given me everything that I need to do this right, but rather than allowing the Son to help me grow into sweet grapes I have focused on how I compare to the other grapes in the field and that is making me sour and bitter. He should be my focus and the center and not how I am doing compared to others.

Chapter 5 continues with several lines of "destruction is certain" for His people who are not focused on Him. I can not do this alone. I have tried MANY times before and failed each and every time. Not only failed but gained MORE weight. I am now trying to refocus on why I started this study, which was about growing closer to the only one who can truly satisfy, and less on the temporary satisfaction of smaller numbers on the scale, because one day those numbers are going to stop getting smaller and then what do I have?

Another hint that I needed to bring God back into this journey was a DVD I found while grocery shopping with the hubby. Now I just want to say that I have looked at this particular rack of exercise DVD's several times over the last week trying to decide whether or not to purchase the DVD version of a VHS program I already own. That would allow me to workout downstairs rather than in the living room only. While going back and forth about it I have browsed every DVD on the rack. On this particular day there was 1 and ony 1 copy of a new DVD I had never seen before.


(You can check it out at http://amzn.to/Ap9Hqn)

So I bought it, and I have to say I LOVE it. That doesn't mean I enjoy the workout, because it does challenge me. What I do love is that throughout the DVD the encouragements are not along the lines of "what a beautiful body you are creating" but rather along the lines of "you are doing a great thing be being a good steward of the body God has entrusted to you". It reminds me the whole time that this body is a gift from God and is His temple and I need to care for it. I am challenged to do my best through the entire workout. It is great for keeping me focused on what is really important.

And that is the challenge I want to leave you with.

If you are going to do it, do it with all of your might!

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Do EVERYTHING for God's glory

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and do it with all your heart!

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So I am still on this journey towards a smaller me, and a more peaceful me, but I learned that my focus needs to be on God.  If my focus is in the right place, everything else will fall in line!

You can find out more about Made to Crave  and do the FREE 21 day challenge here.  You can also join me on SparkPeople for a free weight loss plan.  You can find me as Sunflowers4Me.
Until next time,





Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Off the hook and WIP's

Working on a few shamrocks to place in the Etsy store, and a few last minute heart appliques. 


and a few last minute heart appliques

I also started on a mobius cowl using a mohair blend.  Haven't decided if I am going to keep this one or gift it.  I plan to start working on some charity projects as well.  I have a bonnet I am making for Knit, Pray, Love and if there is enough time perhaps a beanie.  Of course Princess A wants one of everything I make which makes everything take twice as long!

Until next time,
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