Tuesday, July 3, 2018

What do you fear?

This week's Life Q's prompt is all about what you fear most. Other than the obvious my fear is apathy. The way things are going in America right now tends to get all kinds of comments from all of us bystanders, but how many of us are letting our voices be heard? It's very scary and I hope things with turnaround one day soon. Click on the Life Q's link to see my art process with this prompt.

Monday, June 11, 2018

... If at first you don't succeed?'

We are all familiar with the phrase 'If at first you don't succeed try try again but I'm here to say that sometimes if
at first you don't succeed, you weren't supposed to!
Watch my process and explanation here.

Saturday, June 9, 2018

How To Rust Metal Embelishments in minutes!

Lately I have been in need of some rusted elements for my journal and cards and they cost a lot to purchase already rusted so I headed off to the local dollar store, picked up some paper clips and small safety pins and decided to do it myself.




After reviewing several videos on YouTube, I couldn't believe how quick this process was!
*** Apparently this can be a caustic combination so be careful and perhaps wear gloves***
Hydrogen peroxide plus vinegar creates peracetic acid. It may not be as toxic as bleach and ammonia or bleach and vinegar but it is toxic and can cause skin or respiratory irritation.

I didn't wear gloves but I worked right beside the kitchen sink and I was forever rinsing my hands!
Soak your metal bits in vinegar for about 5 minutes.
You need
• 1/4 - 1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide
• 1/4 - 1/2 cup white vinegar
3Tablespoons of white salt

Add to a mason jar leaving the top on loosely as mine started to fizz like soda pop and I was afraid I created some sort of explosive material!
Add your soaked bits into the jar and it should start to process within 5 minutes.
I left mine in for 30 minutes and I love the end result! I even took the mixture and painted some handmade clay hearts to give them that distressed look! Love it!

Monday, June 4, 2018

'Family Strength' - Life Q's Week 21

In this week's video I share my thoughts on family animosity. Instead of pointing fingers at one another, form those fingers into a fist of family strength.
To see my process go here

Sunday, June 3, 2018

De-Clutter!

We just got two new Hemnes yesterday and if you aren't fluent in Ikea speak that means end tables from their store to match the rest of our bedroom furniture. Our bedroom was so cluttered, especially our bed side tables. If you are anything like me, if I am the least bit stressed out or unwell, I find that my living space must be clutter free before I can rest and relax.
 I cleaned out three closets today and the bathroom counters while my husband was building our Hemnes!
Studies show that the more clutter your eyes can see, the more easily it is to be distracted and therefore impossible to relax. Read all about it here
I have always wanted a grown up bedroom without things all over the place and tonight when I came to bed and looked around my room I finally have my wish. It
looked like a hotel suite.
Now I can comfortably take a deep breath. Pause and exhale in my clean clutter free space.

Friday, June 1, 2018

All Things Beautiful

I don't think I've ever been so happy to see May 2018 go by in the rear view mirror as its been more stressful than most! And while I know I could be tempting fate, I've decided it's time to focus on all things positive and beautiful. My mind is in need of some peaceful thoughts and while I'm typing this, my husband just announced that something killed the baby birds in our front yard nest. Bless those sweet birdies but that is completely not in my control . Sadness can not suck me into its vortex, so I must move forward to a place of calm.
About a month ago I was gifted with this beautiful journal from my dear friend Abby and I have been waiting for the moment to start writing in it. I've decided that today, June 1, 2018, I am going to document beautiful things and moments.
                               
"I want to go to a place where I am nothing and everything
  That exists between here and nowhere
I want to got to a place where time has no consequence and 
The sky opens to my prayers
                                                                                        I want to go to beautiful, beautiful, ..." India Arie

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Things I've Learned About Dementia

Today is moving day for my mother and all of us can finally breathe a sigh of relief. She is moving to a lovely facility in Edmonton so though we will no longer be close neighbours, it will be wonderful for her.
This new facility is geared for patients in all stages of memory loss and they even have physicians who do their rounds every day.
So while travelling this dementia road with my family these are some of the things I've learned:

1. Try not to disagree or argue with your loved one. They are confused enough already and adding agitation to that confusion just makes things worse.
2. My mother has been recently suffering with a symptom in her dementia called Sundowning
Apparently a percentage of dementia sufferers have this where they become very restless and want to wander in the evenings.
3.  Be sure that where you place your loved one is an institution that specializes in dementia.
At my mom's new memory care facility the rooms and the beautiful gardens were made in a circle as most people with dementia like to walk in a circle.
4. A caring touch goes a long way. Whenever I notice my mom is agitated I hold her had, rub her back or sing familiar songs to her and she seems to calm down.
5. Try to keep her mind stimulated. This new facility has a college next door and many of the students regularly interact with the residents which I think is wonderful.
6. Last but not least keep being present in their lives. Now that she's being looked after remember that her family is her best advocates and her best medicine!




Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Life Q's Week #20 - Let Go and Let God

Sometimes when you feel that your world is crumbling all around you, a person needs to let go.
With all of the stressful events that have taken place during this past week, I've found myself in a place of numbness.
I miss my Percy and we are starting to call my mom the fugitive. There are times in life that one must realize that they cannot control everything and that they cannot do things alone so I've made the decision to step back, refill my well so to speak so that I have something to offer because right now it's empty.
Things have started to improve with my mother's living situation as I believe they have found a safer placement for her. For more details and to see the process of this week's prompt click here

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Planning a Pet Memorial for Children

Ritual is a very important part of our lives and cultures and I believe that when we lose a pet that it is an opportunity to model for  children that it is OK to be sad and it's important to say goodbye. All of my grandchildren grew up with sweet Percy at their side and they were very sad at his passing. Some expressed it openly and others kept their feelings inside.
My husband and I decided to make a memorial garden for Percy. We did not take any of his remains from the vet so this process was just in his memory.
First the boys painted slate garden stones and while they were painting they talked about their most fun memory of Percy and how sad they were when he died.
Once the garden stones were placed, we planted some bedding plants and then added some additional decorations to our garden including a solar operated butterfly, some cute garden gnomes , a wind chime hung in a nearby tree and glow in the dark pebbles all purchased at the Dollar Store. The best thing I found though was an angel with a puppy in her arms. Just the perfect addition to our space. We adorned the space with incense and blew bubbles all around. We ended this perfect 'ceremony' with ice cream bars and it was the perfect farewell to our sweet puppy.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Goodbye my sweet friend...

It’s with a sad and heavy heart that I share that our sweet gentle dog Percy passed away yesterday afternoon. It was very sudden and we are all still in disbelief. Percy was the most wonderful pet anyone could ever wish for. He was so gentle with our grandsons and loved getting hugs and pets from them. His buddy Fitz misses him already and my heart hurts today. Rest In Peace sweet Percy and thank you for your unconditional love.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Press the Restart Button

This has been an incredibly stressful week dealing with both family and health issues. We were even up all last night with a very sick dog but thankfully he is much better now.
A person has to allow themselves to feel, even cry if they need to, and then they need to pull up their socks and try to start again.
I remember when I was young and I would be upset about one thing or another, (each seemingly devastating issues) and my mom would say you take 24 hours to cry and feel sorry for yourself but after that it's time to regroup and reset.
As with everyone, some situations in my life have been harder than others but I have always tried to apply that practice so... tomorrow I am pressing the restart button and forcing myself  on the road of this crazy thing we call life. Every so often we all need to reboot.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Dementia Sucks

So I thought I was going to be posting a wonderful story about our stitch group and all of the lovely conversations we had last evening but then I received a call from my mother's residence that she was missing. She had gone for a walk around 7:45 PM and it was now 9:40 PM and she was no where to be found.
Some of the ladies that were just leaving our fun evening and some family members started a search party and my husband and I headed to the police station to fill out a missing persons report.
We searched high and low for over two hours. The hospitals, the parks, residential streets and it was starting to get very stressful and frightening.
          Close to midnight I received a call from my sister who lives in the in Seattle saying that a lovely woman had called and said that our mom was with her at a service station. She had walked over 5 kilometres at 89 years old! We drove to pick her up hugged and cried.
 She was fine but also so so confused and happy to see us. We thanked the woman profusely and took her back to her residence.
She normally wears a GPS bracelet but the battery had gone dead.
We were all so relieved that she was found safe and sound. The only blessing is that she will not remember being afraid, lost and alone in the dark.
 Please give extra love to those who have a family member suffering from this terrible disease. They need your love and support and we were so blessed to have that last night.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Life Q's- Week #19 - 'Honour the Crone'

First let me say if you haven't already joined my YouTube series called Life Q's 2018, it's not to late to play along! This is the third year I've done Life Q's where each week I give out a new art journal prompt and its been a great success!
Click on this link to check out how I created my page and to participate in this fun creative venture!
This week's prompt is all about honouring the older woman, the wise woman, the crone as she is known in medieval times. The point is to be sure to seek out these wise individuals in our communities and families as they have so much rich knowledge to offer!

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Get that garden planted!!

It's Victoria Day weekend or better known as the May long weekend here in Canada and the time we all feel safe to plant our gardens and bedding plants.
Planting before that time one risks running into Jack Frost who is just lurking around the corner to ruin all of your hard work.
My herb garden right outside my kitchen window!
Our grape vine!




       This weekend we headed to the greenhouse over at the Real Canadian Superstore and found almost everything we needed.
My husband had already started tomatoes and peppers from seed so I transplanted them into pots.
Feels great to get your hands in the earth and compost and to hit the hay good and tired after a hard day's work!

Rosemary waiting for some Basil!

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Oh what a glorious day!

I am really lacking sleep as I write this post, but  Royal watching was so well worth it! The wedding was to perfection and it had Meghan's touch all throughout with the Reverend's eulogy, the stunning choir and her church exit to the gospel song 'Amen'.
Our party that started at 2 am, was bar none one of the most fun parties I've ever had. The front entry was laden with rose petals and we had enough food to last a lifetime!
One of my favourite moments, and there were many,was the moment the bride was upon to walk down the aisle and the pure excitement of the twin Mulroney page boy! All in all it was such a special time my friends in our facintaors and pj's watching a rare international good news day in the world.






Thursday, May 17, 2018

How To Host a Royal Wedding Party!

I love a wedding and a Royal Wedding literally takes the cake. Stayed up for Diana's, Sarah's and Kate's and I am so so excited for the wedding of Meghan to Prince Harry. The trickiest part of hosting a wedding viewing party is the hour with which the events take place. For us all activities start on the morning of May 19, 2018 at 2:00 am MST with the actual wedding beginning at 5:00am MST.
I've invited a few friends who are brave enough to withstand this ungodly hour and we will have a
lovely English tea with all the expected yummy snacks topped off with, of course Muscato Sangria!
I thought I would share with you some of these free items I found on the web to help make your party even more exciting!
 It would be wonderful to be able to have the Royal party attend the festivities but in their stead you can download these for your guests.
Pinterest has quite a selection of cards found here  for playing Royal Wedding Bingo to add more giggles to the early morning gathering!
The Purple Pumpkin blog also offered some free printables here
for invitations, cupcake wrapper and toppers and tons more!
I found tons of royal flags for printing to wave as the carriage passes us by on our TV's and a fun colouring page here as a take home token.
Just remember to have fun and enjoy these good news moments whether you are a royal watcher or not!
There most likely won't be another wedding like this for the next 25 years!

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Pure Joy!

Last night I spent a night tossing and turning with my usual Lupus aches and pains to finally fall asleep in the early morning hours. I was awoken by a call from my son asking me if I would be able to watch our youngest grandson for a few hours. My first initial thought was to say no, I'm not feeling well. Promising to return his call once I awoke I contemplated how nice it would be to spend the day with that sweet precious boy. Called him back and he brought him over right in time for his nap. I felt like I'd won the lottery when I cuddled him to sleep and I realized what a necessary joy and privilege it is to hold a little one. The best medicine God ever created.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

I Hit The Jackpot!

My daughter called me yesterday and said mom, 
drop whatever you are doing and head over to our local Chapters book store in St. Albert.They are have an amazing 75% off sale!
Well I literally grabbed my husband and we flew over, doing the speed limit of course, because I knew that the gift items and books at Chapters are top quality and I was not disappointed.
The store is planning renovations at the St. Albert  location only and they have reduced some of the nicest items I have ever seen. I purchased a few things last night and then I came home, sat down and organized a Christmas present list.
I picked up my friend this morning and we headed back to Chapters where I stocked up on most of my holiday gifts! I have NEVER been ready this early in the year!
Apparently the sale is on until everything is gone so if you are in the area be sure to head over!

I'm Back!- Coffee from my Couch

Well it's been a hot minute since I wrote in this blog but a great big hello hello to you all!
This is going to be a bit of  rambling post that I'm going to call 'Coffee from my Couch' which will be featured from time to time. **Mug featured in today's post is my most recent Mother's Day gift from my daughter and family that says Nanna Bird...with two 'n's' (bird language I'm sure)**

So much has transpired in the past 5 years. I've had 2 brain surgeries to help relive the pain of Trigeminal Neuralgia It has helped some what in the sense that the pain attacks have been fewer and farther apart but are still severe when they hit!
We also have a new grandson who is already 18 months old! His name is Indiana but we all call him Indy and he is a true pleasure and joy in our lives.
Stitch and Bitch is alive and running again after a 35 year hiatus and what a great bunch of women we are! The stories, laughter and yarn and pattern exchanges are amazing.
My girlfriend Janet and I are also back into a musical theatre class so I feel like I'm slowly getting my life back on track and it feels great!
I will be posting REGULARLY about all of my crafting, knitting and much, much more so I  hope you please continue to follow my life's journey!

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