Friday, July 29, 2011

Experimental crafting. A starting point for your creative juices.

Agapanthus Stems for home and garden decor. I'll show you how I made them...

I was inspired by this lovely garden decoration from Terrain (pictured below). So I scrounged supplies from around the house and got to work.

Using a sturdy wire for the base and floral wire (about 15-20 pieces) for the head, I mimicked the basic shape of the flower. The beads I simply threaded and rolled the ends of the wire around to attach.

Here's a closer look...

Then I spray-painted it all white. Just think how lovely it would be to make an arrangement out of a bunch of these, all sprayed different colors!

With one, upon Duke's suggestion, I sprayed the wire first and added the beads later for color. I like it.

Anyway, maybe this little experiment gives you a tiny idea that will turn into something marvelous.

Cheers, all.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

music to my eyes.


The sun commanded us. Go to a park. I read this morning in the community news that an old favorite, Nelson park, just sprouted a new drinking fountain.

My favorite memories from Nelson park are...

1. Duke took me there on one of our first dates. He stole my shoe and I chased him.

2. The boys and I chose to try and watch the sunrise there last February. February. Can you believe it?

Now I can add today to that list. It was lovely.

We really broke in that new drinking fountain...

I am so very thankful for the art of photography. I find its product valuable enough to invest my limited time. In turn, along with the preservation of precious moments, I see with keener eyes.

Without photography, I doubt I would have considered a drinking fountain to be a worthy attraction. It would have been just as heavenly had I never snapped a photograph, so long as we'd had our keen eyes on. I guess what photography does for me is gift me with gratitude goggles, for highlighting simple pleasures. The same goggles that my children wear always. I hope they never wake up a morning of life without them on.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Sweetie.

I never want to forget. They made up a game; they call it "sweetie." One of them is "sweetie" and the other is the compassionate caregiver. Sweetie asks for things and the the other answers, "Yes, sweetie" or "no, sweetie, not right now," depending on the inquiry.

Will you please roll the car windows down for me? "Yes, sweetie, of course." And down those imaginary windows come. It's like they're playing house only even more darling. They play at night before bed (we spy through the monitor) or in the morning hours as I clean. Really any time they think of it. And I love that they do think of it. All on their own.

Duke and I wanted to play pretend today, too. So we set up a restaurant for dinner time and served them as our guests. Yes, sir. Excellent choice, sir. Will you be wanting a beverage, sir?

Chocolate milkshakes with every-color of sprinkles? Coming right up!

Oh, the loveliness that little acts of sweetness bring into our family.

We're surrounded by real-life sweeties.

And we've plenty of opportunities each day to show them our love in return.

Oh, joy. (And a happy sigh.)

Monday, July 25, 2011

My birthday at the beach.

Twenty-six years. Happy childhood. Pleasant adolescence. Passionate marriage. Three point five babies. Ups and downs, par for the course. I'm quite pleased, really, with the way things are.

I've noticed that I am getting older. I look MUCH better with makeup on than without. I have to work at maintaining my weight. I have a "mom" body with stretch-marks and tired bags under my eyes. I asked Duke why it is that men seem to age more gracefully than women. He said it's because they shave and it exfoliates. I said I think that the standards of beauty are just higher for women. Wrinkles and gray hair on men are distinguished.

Wouldn't it be weird to be a teenager with a mother who never aged a day? A mother that looked like a sister. Too weird. This is the natural order of things and I am learning to see the great blessings of a full life when I look in the mirror (instead of my growing, pregnancy double-chin).

I have a family that loves me.

And far too many luxurious comforts, simply because I was born where I was born.

My eyes and ears and hands. I've every opportunity to soak in the beauty all around me.

So much beauty.

Simply stated, It's good to be me at whatever age.


I hope you are enjoying the endless blessings that surround you in your particular, package-deal life, too.

Friday, July 22, 2011

the drive-in experience.

I simply adore stocking up on candy and chips, packing the car with blankets galore, and heading to the drive-in.


The magic is in the headlights. The ambient sound of simultaneous radio tuning. The building anticipation as dusk settles.

The kids barely kept their eyes open past the opening credits.

That's ok, though.

The movie isn't exactly the number-one priority at the drive-in anyway.

(As evident by all the kissing that goes on there.)