Monday, November 26, 2012

Artsy-Crafty Edition

I assume nobody got run over at the shopping mall this weekend?  Good!

The season has officially sprung, and once again, I'm refusing to participate in total consumer madness.  Whatever the hot items are, I know nothing of them.  The sibs and cousins and I are holding strong on the family no-gift truce for the family holiday party (exceptions for under-18; minor cheating allowed for sneakily gift-carding young adult kids).  Nothing big, even among us chez nous.

But, I'm feeling festive!  And artsy -- a painting from an unbloggable provenance finally reached me after an unbloggable delay.  It was a humbling gift of the heart; a complete affirmation of the belief that something special rests in each one of us, and all we need to do is support the impulse and share the joy.

So, shopped the local arts store on Flack Briday, and discovered that the artist on duty is also a historian, whose day job is teaching community college classes (but his art photos are all about the western US); and a local art show, where it turned out that a colleague (married to an artist) was playing mandolin in the background at the opening party, and the organizing artist went to law school with another colleague.  Serendipity, no?  

All this sent me to the fabric store with an overwhelming burst of craftiness.  Santa always has stockings for everybody visiting on Christmas day, and I have a burning need to create new stockings.  Out of felt, the most forgivable of materials.  I bought 1/4 yard (72" wide) in 12 colors -- plenty for extra stockings to donate + decorative extras (trees; snowflakes; whatevah) -- the raw materials set me back a whopping $8.29, plus thread and tax.  And some other optional whatzits.  Just saying -- a little heart need not cost much or be hard to do.

I'm also behind, behind on some work thing.  gah.

What's the good, the bad, and the ugly for you?


esperanza said...

I'll whine later, but your art gallery story sounds like small town life rather than serendipity. Except for you know, the art part, and the mandolin.

kathy a. said...

It is kinda small-town, which is thrilling! My town is small, but a sleepy place in a major metro area; I never expect to see people I know from the big city.

kathy a. said...

i totally forgot the big W: sigmoidoscopy. which i dread very badly.

Sue said...

Artsy! Crafty!!

Awesome kathy! I am humbled. There isn't a crafty cell in my body.

Isn't it lovely when you discover what a small world it is? At times, the world is like a small town.

Good luck with the sigmoidoscopy. Preventative health care isn't always pleasant, but it's always good.

W: Spent my day off yesterday doing the holiday shopping. No groceries - thank goodness! - but I did have to venture into the mall for one item. I do not like the mall - at. all.

I put on my special fluorescent-blocking glasses, that helped a bit, but the whole experience (which lasted about 15 minutes) almost ruined my day. Ugh. Next year that item is off the list. Seriously.

AW: The rest of the day was spent shopping LOCAL!! We have such amazing locally operated shops.

esperanza said...

The mall makes me shudder. Shopping pretty much makes me shudder, though I did enjoy getting some artsy-craftsy shopping of my own done yesterday. I was attempting to avoid Too Many Projects this season, but it's not looking good.

Dear Universe or someone in charge thereof, Would you please return the Sweet Baboo to her formerly sweet self. This grumpy, argumentative, snotty baboo can go back to wherever she came from.

kathy a. said...

Esperanza -- hints about your projects??

Sue -- I swear, anybody can do something with felt! I'm only using the sewing machine for the edges of the stockings, but they could actually be done with fabric glue -- or hand-sewing, which is a popular classroom project in which everybody's a winner! Fabric glue it is, for the decorations and embellishments at my house.

Esperanza -- for Baboos not ready for actual needles, a hole-punch and yarn threaded through works for the sewing part of the project!

Also, design inspiration here:

esperanza said...

mmm...let's see. Finishing up a set of ABC's for Sweet's speech therapist. Doing two spa wraps (like for after showering) for two teenagers who are extra nice to the Baboos. New Christmas tree skirt. Some kind of star hanging thingy for the front door.

See? Trying not to over-project myself. Still have lots of people with "??" beside their names on the shopping list.

kathy a. said...

they all need felt stockings, in my opinion.

esperanza said...


Also some non-crafty projects, work related.

Sue said...

kathy - you will be pleased to know that when our boys were babies, I made them stockings for Christmas out of FELT!!! You're right, it was easy. They have snowmen on them (three white circles - check!) and other Christmas-y things.

We used them until about 5 years ago. The boys wanted to put their stockings in their keepsake boxes and use store-bought ones so that the originals won't get anymore ripped up than they are. Too many years of over-stuffed stockings and excited boys on Christmas morning have left them looking well used.

Hey! I could make new ones!

W: No time until after the holidays.

AW: They would be ready for next year.

liz said...

I think most people on my list are getting chocolates this year.

kathy a. said...

yay! chocolate for everyone! what else is going on, liz?

esperanza -- that's an impressive amount of craftiness. how are you doing the ABC's? (she'll love that!)

sue -- see, you try to pass yourself off as non-creative, but you are so busted. ;)

W: massive rainstorm.

AW: daughter's gotten herself back on a daytime schedule, and is applying for jobs with renewed enthusiasm. and as motivation, she wants to work on stocking decorating later!

liz said...

Yay for re-motivated, re-mornivated daughters!

Yay to all you very crafty pixies.

W: We lost in court and I am bummed.

AW: Because of the nature of the fight I'm in, even if we lose, we win. Because it's more evidence of how the government is fighting transparency.

AW: Filed an appeal.

AW: Good write-up in the local paper.

esperanza said...

We're off tomorrow, after a full day of therapies, to the grandparents' house for a short family visit. Monday will bring Sweet's follow-up for her foot, and spiffy new braces for nighttime (please, dear Lord, let him say they are just for nighttime).

W: SO TIRED of making that drive. SO TIRED in general. Going to bed soon.

Sue said...

Yay for job enthusiasm!

Aw Liz, sorry about the disappointment. But yay for appealing and good press!!

esperanza - sorry to hear about the So Tired.

W: You know that purse-sized hand lotion I picked up the other day? It's at home on my nightstand. My hands are dry and cracked.


kathy a. said...

go, liz! shining light on dark corners of government is a noble effort. great that you are getting positive press!

((( esperanza ))) that sounds like a long day, followed by a long drive. crossing fingers all goes well with the follow and braces.

sue, you have performed a community service, reminding us to check for portable necessaries, now that the season is upon us.

the stockings are moving along! so far: dog wearing santa hat; owl. upcoming: pig; pumpkin + santa hat; stars of david; cactus; cat pawprints; dog bone; snowman; underwater scene; christmas tree; small grove of trees; candy cane; stars; gingerbread man; ornaments; holiday lights; snowflakes.

the more non-traditional selections are for particular people! extras will go to a shelter + outreach program.

debangel said...

Kathy- you made an owl stocking? Can I see?? I only have a few shelves worth of owls, so it's not like I'm obsessed with them and you'd be feeding my addiction or anything..


Sue, I am with you on the dry hands! I can remember everything to do for James and the kiddos, and I can't seem to extend that to putting lotion in my purse. Is the dryness as bad there as it is in CO? I swear, they need to hand out Crocs and Chapstick at all Colorado DMV offices.

So, the whine: I went to the ob/gyn office today to have what my husband teased me was the "rod ride" (I am scared of doc appts, and he made me laugh hard enough that I not only forgot to be nervous, but couldn't come up with a smart aleck response till later) of the lovely ultrasound. Honestly, that's one of those things that *sounds* like it should be fun in theory, but is NOT. The tech was the best I've had, though. After an hour's wait, the doc came in exclaiming triumphantly, "ah-HAH!!". Uterine polyp, and a pretty nice-sized one at that. Hello, culprit of excessive stuck-pig bleeding and mid-cycle "surprises".

Whine #2: General anesthesia for the D&C to remove it. Yuck, especially since I have 1) never had a general 2) just watched how sick James' made him, and 3) James will be gone for most of January and February on business. So I have to try and schedule it during his short breaks at home.

Antiwhine #1: I WAS RIGHT!! The nurse practitioner at my PCP's office who did my Pap was telling me it was probably nothing and to wait. I *knew* there was something up.

Antiwhine #2: I don't strictly have to have surgery on it, as the chances of it being cancerous are very slim. So, eat my rare steak and spinach salad, chill out, and schedule it on my own terms.

Antiwhine #3: I am making my great-grandma's recipe for rice pudding and it smells SO GOOD. It's baked, and it is the best EVER. Anyone who wants the recipe, email me at ddebangel at that gmail thing :) (And if you want to "Like" my FB page where I post my cooking stuff, LMK.)

Eeek! Sue, I was supposed to send you recipes! How did I just remember that? Does anemia make you forgetful? Yeah, that must be it. I'll get right on that.

Happy holiday prepping, Pixie pals ;-)

kathy a. said...

oh, debangel. you probably don't actually want to be dealing with all that bleeding, all the time.

why don't you check out more about the anesthesia? they might be able to use a shorter-acting, less barfy one on you. i had a uterine biopsy once (oh, we'll just stick this little thing through your cervix), and then they had to peel me off the ceiling because OMG. you really want general. xoxo

liz said...

I want the rice pudding recipe, please.

Schedule sooner rather than later, why have that hanging over your head?

AW: Our little court date lit a fire under the prosecutor. So even tho we technically lost, we are totally moving the game along, and therefore...WINNING!!!

(lesson in this: remember to keep your eyes on the road ahead. It's the goal that matters.)

Sarah said...

Liz - fight the good fight!

Debangel - when I had a D&C years ago, they did the twilight sleep. (Not even sure what that is - it's a step less than a general.) I've had that for dental surgery too. The recovery was pretty easy. Good luck in all cases.

Sue - aww for the stockings

KathyA - yay for your daughter's maturity and energy. And stockings! yay! Felt is awesome.

Esperanza - wow, that's a lot to get done. Rock on.

Whine: strep throat. It came on yesterday, I'm on antibiotics. But ugh!

AW: I met a really nice guy and we're trying out dating, just the two of us. He makes me want to get unstuck with where my life is right now, just a loving motivation, not any pressure from him. It makes me feel better about 2013.

Sue said...

debangel - I agree - go with the general and do it soon. It's best to have it done and over with. (why yes, I just ended that sentence with a preposition - insert well-known joke here - *grin*)

Yay kathy on the stockings - they sound lovely. Did I tell you I've ordered a novel about a woman with a quilting club who gives quilts to good causes? It sounds really good. It's a Christmas book, so I won't get to it 'til the new year, but I thought of you when I saw it.

Sarah - boo on strep throat. Feel better soon.

Liz - keep on fighting sister!!

AW: A week from today is our family Christmas dinner. Both hubby and I are really looking forward to it. The whole thing takes on a delightful and non-stressful tone without Bat-Stuff-Crazy-Wife-of-my-Dad in attendance.

W: I miss my Dad.

AW: I think I'll skype him this weekend.

W: My upper right shoulder blade seems to have re-invented the muscle spasm. Um, OUCH!!! I've relocated the laptop to the couch today with a heating pad on the shoulder. If I didn't have to write a sermon, I would stay off the 'puter. I'm thinking that excessive computer time at work is the culprit.

AW: Short sermon this week. Tell your friends! Come one, come all! Seriously, in fifteen years, not a single complaint when the sermon is concise and short.

liz said...

Sue - Sorry about your shoulder. May I recommend a singing service? A short sermon on music being the way most people think of this season, and a selection of the slightly less overplayed carols?

Sue said...

Great idea Liz! I've got a good 5-minute sermon written and I think that's all I can do. A few good Carols by Request will finish off that part of the service nicely.

Catch y'all later - this laptop is going away.

Whine of sadness: Thinking of the College in Colorado where the shooting occurred. So tragic.

kathy a. said...

oh, man. sue, i had not heard that news. it's actually in wyoming; and this sounds extremely weird. even for the U.S.


awards later.

debangel said...

Sue: I think a short, singing service would be perfect! Even more perfect: you promise your congregation a succinct service in exchange for long shoulder rubs. Problem solved :) Oh, and I'm glad you get to hang out with *just* your dad. I"ll be he's happy about that, too!

Sarah..woohoo for a little romance! Sending you mistletoe vibes. About time you had a good time :)

Re: the general anesthetic- if that's what the doc is comfortable with, it's cool by me- I just need to get a DNR/living will/crap I should have done years ago together, first. I think I will call on Monday to get the ball rolling. Frankly, I am a phobic enough patient (just for the ob/gyn and dentist, but for that, I need Xanax), that they should just go ahead and sedate me *now*, LOL. I think they should offer a general to everyone, once a year, and do Pap smears, dental cleanings, colonoscopies, ingrown toenails and bikini waxes, all in one swell foop ;)