Friday, January 27, 2012

Looking Forward. . .

With Christmas over and decorations placed away (yes, January is just about done :)) I'm hopeful - looking forward to a new year..  And a "Happier New Year" to all!  And, how about you?  What will this new year hold?  I believe is the question that's on the minds of many - if not all of us.  Last year was difficult we faced many trails as well as, saying goodbye to loved ones - still my heart is thankful.
Christmas to was stressful - not as happy as hoped, but we were blessed and thankful family was near even if only for a short while.  I also was blessed from two dear friends with special gifts.   One from my childhood chum that truly touched my heart, thank you Becky.

Musical Water Globe
The Musical Water Globe plays Amazing Grace -  as the heart inside turns.  On the heart:
The Light of God surrounds me.
The Love of God enfolds me.
The Power of God protects me.
The Presence of God watches over me.
Wherever I am, God is and all is well.

The base is engraved; "Good friends are like stars.  You don't always see them, but you know they are there."

It came after Christmas and when I needed it the most.  A boost if it were from the Lord sent by a friend!

This year my hope is to focus more on things that are happier to and for my heart!  I've worked so hard the past few years that truly time wasn't left or taken for myself.  I've put thing's I used to enjoy aside rushing from one duty to the next.  Christmas was also an eye-opener to me - I think I spent 95% of my time in the kitchen mostly cleaning and preparing for what came next, just working.  I was thankful Mat was here and helpful get to all the things I couldn't - I can't do it "all" anymore~  One example - which caused disappointment was not finishing a Christmas present; I did get to finish afterward (details below) yet this being one example.  I used to do many things and fun things too, most importantly was taking time with the Lord.  Everything joyful - it seemed I'd do less of or I placed on a back burner; especially since moving here.  All which has left me tired - burnt out, feeling somewhat lifeless!

Lifeless gives one the idea of not living when I guess the proper term would be a lack of desire to do anything.  Also, aches and creeks I've never experienced - of course you might say at my age it's only natural - I don't totally agree.  Remember, A merry heart doeth good like a medicine; but a broken spirit drieth the bones.  Proverbs 17:22 KJV  So I'm taking steps - to use that measure of faith and starting again to get my "act" together! LOL 

The finally finished and sent Christmas Gift.  Several years ago this project actually was a vision and started with going to pup sit for my grandpup, Sage (photo's).  She was about 6 mos. I imagine and when we went out to walk on a trail Sage found a stick she carried everywhere.  I thought wow that would make a great wind chime and a memory of Sage.  Sage to our sadness is no longer with us but we have happy memories of her and now Julie has memory wind chimes.   I used "Sage's" stick, Capiz shells, copier, velum paper, photo's, decoupage glue, fishing line, artist brush and copper for a decorative touch.  Also a drill and bits.  :)

It's funny I had the stick for so long and knew I wanted to use shells.  After a few years the shells I wanted to use I found at the Pottery Barn - I wasn't even looking.  Of course time went by and I guess it's that timing thing - well just before this Christmas and while asleep I saw the shells in my dreams with Sage's pictures.  I was excited!

Using vellum paper - I was thinking of something light weight that you still would be able to hear the shells in a breeze.  Then came collecting photo's you'd like to use and how to print them on the vellum.  I have an HP printer and I Googled a few sites for some direction and found the best answer for printing on vellum at the HP site.  duh~
Of course I found them after the fact - lol - printed the pictures of choice - cut them to size.  If I had used info from HP I would have used less ink.

After getting the pictures ready I then decided where I would place them.  Since the shell are different in size I placed them out how I wanted them to hang - then decided where prints would go.  (This was actually the first step shell placement and drilled the smallest holes with drill for hanging).  I used Mod Podge (glue) and first applied to back of print lightly and placed on shell.  I continued on with the rest of the printed pictures.  After they were dry, I choose the softest flat headed art brush to finish (seal) the top of the print.  This was tricky since "vellum" doesn't soak the ink in as reg. printer paper.  So some of the ink pulled away.  It still worked.  Also using the softest brush possible left less lines.  Let dry.

I then strung the shells together and using tape decided where to place them on the stick (they need to be close enough to hear) to get an idea where to place holes.

I used copper as a decorative touch and placed the wire on the edges of the stick first then drilled holes for hanging and for shells.  I used a larger drill bit than I used on the shells.   Copper washers to help hold the line and to hang.

The cool thing about the vellum prints on the shells they look transparent in the light and you can see the print on both sides.

I was disappointed this wasn't ready for Julie at Christmas - mostly I still owe her a quilt :/  - another long story, I'm hoping soon.  So it did make me feel bad.  I also learned my hands don't work as well as they did a couple years back.  The plan is to not dwell on the problems and not wear myself out.  The Lord is so wonderful in how He cares for us and that we aren't to carry burdens - trust Him and give them up! 

Thinking on this I thought came to me quickly that I need to share.  I actually think its humorous.  
"Give them their do, then bid them adieu." VLB 1-25-12  That's right! Your concerns that you have pray for them and do what you can then give them up!  Know one can solve a problem better.  True you do have a mind - so use it.  Pray for wisdom and direction.  Don't focus on the problem - God is working all the time focus on all the good that He still does!

Done~  till next time.  .  .

BTW-  Joanie, I hadn't forgotten your caring for my outside with lovely oils and creams the desert can surely dry you.  Also for family the fellowship and the goodies - much love to all.