Monday, January 22, 2018

Life Happens

 On our way to Starved Rock State Park here in Illinois to see our friends and hopefully see some eagles.
 It was so gloomy and foggy.  Some spots on the highway were really soupy.
 There was still ice on the rivers, but the temperature was rising all day.
 We found our friends already checking out the eagle situation.
 Over the river on a branch was one eagle, posing for photographs.  We did see one other eagle in flight.  It's pretty thrilling.
 We headed over to the lodge for brunch.

 The conversation started out serious, as Sue was in a terrible car accident in early December.  She was hospitalized for three days.   Of course we talked about our kids and grandchildren, pleasant conversation and sharing.  I hugged Sue repeatedly, so grateful that she is doing better. Life happens to us all, but we are here for each other through thick and thin.
 What a great room, no pun intended.

 Plenty of spaces for relaxing and conversation.

 This is Dot and Kev.
 This is Sue and Ron.
 This is a kindly old couple, but forever young on the inside.  We ladies have been friends for 50 years. That is where I am concerned.  Sue and Dot go back to maybe first grade, and Kev and Ron have been friends since grade school too.  The guys, have know each other since our courting days in the 70's.

A good time, as we always have when we are together.
 Earlier in the week we had some snow.

Just love the look of the neighborhood in a blanket of snow.
 On Monday, I looked out the window to see this amazing sky at sunset.
 How do you even try to describe this beauty?
It only lasted minutes but it was stunning. 
 I put this geranium in my hubby's office at Christmastime.  It loves the all tech talk and the sunny days.  Sorry honey, I will try to keep up with the falling petals.

 I enjoy this pop of color in the winter.
 Changed things up just a little for Valentine's Day.

 I pick out all the green candies from Christmas to enjoy at Valentine's Day. ;-)
A little bit of Valentine's Day in the kitchen.

On a sad note, my guild lost a dear member on Saturday.  Our friend Shirley died suddenly.
Shirley was an amazing artist.  She was generous with her talent, decorating the Church for the different seasons and holidays.  As a guild member, she held the record for cutting out the  most Hug a Bears.  Her quiet nature and kindness made her a pleasure to work with.  She had a twinkle in her eye when she talked art and gardening.  Shirley will be sorely missed, but we are comforted because so many of us have her lovely paintings.   Those paintings will be cherished, just as Shirley's memory will be cherished by all of her sisters in Guild One.

Thank you for stopping by and for your friendship and kindness.
Enjoy this beautiful day.
Love, Penny

Monday, January 15, 2018

The New Year Makes Me Crafty

 A trip to the thrift isn't always successful, but then there are times you can be inspired.  This little plate spoke to me.  This is the type of calligraphy of the word Friendship I was taught by dear Sister Ann in High School.  Oh to learn the beautiful Spencerian script of the swirls and graceful letters of the script beneath the word Friendship. My penmanship could use a little practice.  Remember the workbooks we had in grade school, practicing the loops, upper and lower.  I remember the sore I got on my finger from holding the pencil too tight.  Maybe when Penny learns cursive, I can practice with her.
Then I found this weird sign.  As soon as I saw it, I knew what it could be.  It's shape reminded me of those old school Hymn boards found in churches.
 I used some chalkboard paint to cover the Brandy bottle.
 Then used some chalk based paint for the frame.
 A few guide lines...
a stencil and a chalk pencil...
and I had myself a Hymn board. Quirky, perhaps, but I love it. I may wax the finish to give it an antique look. Favorite hymn?  I have dozens, choir girl that I was for many years.
Think I'll leave it blank for a while.  Dearest suggested Amazing Grace.
 I've been using this room upstairs to store all the overflow from Christmas.  Since we have a wedding to plan and decorate for this summer, I moved in the tables and I gathered all the tools I will need and put them all in one place.
 I've been a woman without a craft room for months now.  The basement never worked out.  It was too dark and far away from the rest of the house and my dearest was two floors up.  It's not as bright as the other side of the house, but I brought in a standing lamp and I have an Ott light for close work.
 This is going to work out much better. (Until I change my mind again;-)
I know I've shown this before but ...
I have this little envelope framed and hanging in my space.  The first letter I ever received.  That penny has been stuck on the envelope for almost 63 years! A scientific anomaly! What glue lasts 63 years?  Beside being a treasured keepsake, it may have some value, beside the 1955 penny.

Kind of a botanical theme accidentally taking place here.

  Next door in my office...
Collections of glass hobnail vases, mercury glass votives.  
We have to plan a shower, a rehearsal dinner and decorate tables for the wedding of Mike and Amanda later this year.  So many other decorations and supplies are taking up space here there and everywhere it seems.  I know from the experience with Jon and Charlotte's wedding, the time will fly.  They have already celebrated their first anniversary!
I got to spend time with both of our boys this weekend.  Jon spent the day, lounging and watching movies with his Dad.  So good to have him just hanging out.  Mike came by the next day and watched football, talked tech with Dad.  No Penny this weekend.  She had a busy social calendar, a birthday party and play dates.  

Even when we can't be together, we still have fun.
I purchased a bag of doll clothes at the thrift, of course, 
and with Grandpa's help we had a fashion show on Facetime for our girl.  I played the song, Girl from Ipanema, (There is no better song for a fashion show.) Grandpa held the phone as I walked all the dolls and animals we have here at home down the catwalk, dressed in the new doll clothes. (The catwalk being the dining room table)  Penny and Kristen laughed and laughed. Grandpa thought I was enjoying it the most, which was true.  I love to make our girl laugh, I want her to have the happiest memories of her old grandma and grandpa.  She loves silly and so do I!
Clarence, my bear, Stitch and Tigger were quite embarrassed, but played along.

 Bits of nature keep the winter blues away. 
 The amaryllis is still going gangbusters.
Four huge and beautiful blooms.

Today is Martin Luther King Day, he said,
"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.  
Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that."

Sending love out into the universe,
Praying for Peace.
Enjoy this beautiful day.
Love, Penny