Sunday, July 5, 2015

Pocket Letters

Keeping in touch just got a whole let prettier

Recently, I was introduced to a new concept on the art of pen pal writing. This 21st century invention involves a plastic nine card holder, often used for collecting baseball cards, and small pretty pieces of paper 'blinged' up to the delight of both the maker and the recipient. These cute little pieces can be embellished with anything one can imagine. I was told that if you can scrapbook then you can create these delightful packages. Once you make a pocket letter, as they are called, you can look for a swap partner. I did this by joining a small Australian group, run through Facebook.
Of course like many things I love, once I start I keep on making them. However, I have done just three swaps. It is a fun way to meet new people and you can decide with the swap partner whether you want to continue on swapping or if it was a once off event.
I have included photos of two of my pocket letters, and you will notice that there is a front and a back to them. In the back you can include little odds and ends as you desire. This is not necessary, but adds to charm and pleasure for the recipient. Oh and importantly is the 'letter', which is slipped into one of the pockets. Most pocket letter makers include a tea bag so their partner can enjoy a cuppa.

Additionally, I have been ordering craft product to make these pocket letters and to add to my immense collection of beautiful papers. Addiction?

The photo below shows another habit of mine-adult colouring books. I came across these about 2 years ago and now there is a mass influx of these type of books everywhere. The selling point is the 'mental health' benefits as it helps people to de-stress, calm down, be more mindful, live in the moment. I feel that these would have been helpful in my days working as a counsellor. "Here, take this book, it will help you heaps". I will say it has been quite calming for me at times.

So that is a little crafty update from me.


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Pocket Positives

                                              Rusty African Chimes hanging in our almond tree

What do you write? When you feel shut down. Something? Anything? No, who is going to bother reading? I wonder if I am making sense. Maybe to myself, but not too others. 
Being in a dark place for much longer than is acceptable. Not acceptable to me and not to those in my life. Seeking professional help, that doesn't 'fix' the problem. Feeling alone with the Big Black Dog. Scary at times. Tiring, all the time. Debilitating. However, there are bright moments among these dark days and for that I am grateful. 
The moments can form a collective of pockets, which I can delve into at times when the mood strikes. Yes, a lovely pocket of positives. 
Moments such as discussing craft products with like minded women in craft groups. Finding out where to buy the newest, prettiest paper or ephemera. Sharing the funnier side of life and being able to laugh and chuckle freely-I love that. I was a person who laughed a lot. However, nowadays it takes a bit longer. 
The camaraderie, is a salve for wounded soles. 
Supporting other women as they go through life with all of its ups and downs.

                                                              Flowers in the front garden

Life throwing us curved balls. Taking away the people we love. People hurting the ones we love. 
On we go...

Friday, February 20, 2015

Just a few things

The above quote helps explain why I am not a regular writer on my blog anymore.

However, I am updating the blog so I don't have to see the Christmas post and be hit in the face by my slackness. I thought that I would begin by showing a few of the things that I have been doing since the last post. Of course this is not the sum total of that period, but just a bit that I have photos for. First up is a dish that I made in my new 5 in 1 cooking pot thingy. I found the recipe on a Facebook page set up for the discussion of these cookers. I have made it twice to great delight. I was impressed that something I made turned out. It's called Creamy, chicken, tomato and bacon rigatoni. If anyone reads this blog still and would like to give it a go let me know. I used the slow cooking option and it cooks quite quickly, although not as quick as the original recipe stated, however I did increase the ingredients so that is why.

This photo is of the beautiful moth orchid given to me by my daughter Katie. I love it, but as I told her I have black fingers and worried it would die. At this point one has lost all of its flowers but they are both alive.

This beautiful journal was given to me by my dear friends A. She knows how to select just the right gift. I truly treasure this and have not written in it. I wont until I can decide what is the best thing to do it justice. I did think about using it as a quote keeper. You know when you come across a quote or saying that really resonates with you. Yep, think this is gonna be the book for that. I also have some pretty markers, pens, washi tapes to compliment it. This journal has the added bonus of smelling like coffee. The maker of this book dyed some of the paper with coffee and so it is infused into the pages. Mmmmm :) I would really like to have a go at making a journal from scratch so will look out for some materials to do so.

This pic is small, sorry but it is a diary I ordered to use this year. Despite warnings from some friends, I went ahead and bought an A5 size. Not big enough! I liked it though as I could get it personalised with my name and could choose the cover. Next years diary will be at least A4.

Tonight some friends are coming to visit me. After two years or more chatting online and corresponding the 'old fashioned' way I get to meet my friend A-M and her man. Will report back after the event when I have recovered.

Till then

Do something you love


Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Just a few of my favourite things

Happy Christmas 2014

 I wasn't going to decorate the house this year due to a lack of cheer and festive spirit. However one of my daughters came over to give me a hand to clean up and the suddenly I gave the go ahead to decorate for Christmas.
 I will admit that it cheered me a bit. My two grandsons appreciate it, even if they repeatedly try to strip the tree. At night time when the lights are turned on, they are in awe. 
Many of the houses in our street have decorated and I love to hear their expressions of pure wonder and delight. That, to me, is more than worth the effort. 

Additionally among a rush of great ideas I got hold off a twig and got The Bloke to spray pain it black.I placed small deep red hearts on it and I love the way it looked. Simple, cheap and effective.

Today's long overdue post is due to one of my daughters, Nicole, who lives away from the family wanting an update as she likes to see all that we get up to. Of course this post does not include all that we have done through the year, otherwise it would be book size. 
I have felt a few times that I might like to come and post and record what life is like for me. However most of this year I have been caught up in a heavy bout of depression.
 Things have not been good. Luckily for me, I found a GP who comes to see me at my home, and who trialed me on a new medication and increased the level until it suited my body. I will say that my moods have improved, but I have a way to go until I can call it a successful regime. I expect to still have bad days like anyone else, but my bad days stop me from enjoying the day to day stuff and my family fully. Depression sucks!

However, interspersed in the dark patches are spots of bright cheer.
I am talking about my furniture painting obsession. Yep, I'm still at it. Annie Sloan Chalk Paint is my medium and I like nothing better than buying a cheap piece of furniture or whatever it is I want to make over and slapping this chalky goodness over it and waxing it to a smooth, velvety touch. Oh this heaven to me. It has helped me from loosing my mind entirely.
I can go weeks, even months without touching a paint brush, but when I get the energy surge I am all go-go-go. Paint going all over the place and I even got some on my brown leather lounge last time. Oops!
Luckily it comes off in water, another great thing about this type of paint. By the way I am not paid to say nice things about this paint.

The green table below is one I bought from a fellow furniture painter. I just love it as is painted in two of my favourite colours. ASCP Versailles and ASCP Old White.

The next pictures are an old Kitchenette I bought from someone who was going to restore it but changes their mind. I cleaned it thoroughly and then with lots of help from The Bloke painted it in ASCP Old White. Nothing dramatic, not distressing as I am sure over time it will develop the look without my help. I just have to get something to line the inside bottom shelves as they despite cleaning are too sticky and yukky to use. This cupboard is now in my new bathroom to hold all out towels and stuff.

The next photo is the small dining table that I use as my desk. I sit here all day and do everything here. It's a crafting table, meeting place for friends, holder of all things that don't have a home. My computer sits on it. I love it. The photo doesn't show it properly as it looks quite patchy here, but is actually pretty good.

The next photo, sorry for the blur, is am old gold coloured mirror that I painted old white. It lives next to my bed until we find the right place for it.

Now, this is a great little stool I recently bought and haven't had time to paint. I am going to paint it white on top and leave the bottom black. If some where down the track I change my mind, then I will slap some Versailles on it.

Final pic shows a table and chairs I bought very cheap months ago. I was unsure what to do with it. Now I am going to paint the chairs in old white, recover the seats, and use them in my lounge at a round table that I have had for ever. This table is sitting on my side veranda, waiting for me to decide what I will do with it. I might even sell it as is.

So there you have it. I wish everyone a lovely festive season and a very happy new year.


Friday, September 12, 2014

Bathroom Photos

After quite a lengthy delay, and without the complete set of renovation photos here are my latest offerings. I hope it was worth the wait. I can say that the bathroom is very nice to use and much easier to navigate around given my size and needs. There are a few minor jobs left to do and that includes hanging a large mirror I painted in the Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, old white. The delay is partly caused by the bloke and I not wanting to drill into the wall tiles to install the hooks. I worry that if the mirror was to break we would be left with holes in tiles and that is not a look I want to live with. The 3M Command hooks that stick on I don't trust as I have had a few accidents when using them. 

The old white buffet in the first photo is one I painted in ASCP old white, as is the little case sitting on top, which is where we store bathroom necessities. 
I confess that since taking these photos the buffet has been moved to the dining room; its original home, and we have instead moved the large ASCP duck egg blue painted dressing table into the spot. I feel this means my bedroom suite has come back together again.