Archive for September, 2010

Crafting My Best Life

Although this is a crafting-focused blog, the crafting in my life obviously doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Bottom line is that I’m a mom to ten kids, eight of whom still live at home, seven of whom I’m still homeschooling. Some of these kids have major physical, cognitive and behavioral challenges. So, the majority of my time is spent parenting and homemaking, not crafting. Yet, crafting is what re-charges me to do what I have to do. So, I prioritize it.

For the past three weeks, I’ve been dealing with some especially challenging behaviors from Peter. Peter takes medication and is working with a counselor. I usually have hope that these challenges can be eventually resolved. However, he’s had these challenges his whole life, so they’re probably not going to disappear overnight.

Only other moms who deal with behaviorally challenged children can fully appreciate the way that they drain you of energy. It sometimes becomes difficult to continually pull yourself up by your bootstraps. So, I decided this week that I just needed to go ahead and do something that I believe will add to my “energy storehouse”:

I signed up for Jenny Doh’s Crafting My Best Life course.

A few weeks ago, I had seen her promotional video for the course. She is the featured speaker at Silver Bella in November, so I was perusing her blog when I found out that she was teaching this course. I so badly wanted to sign up for it. I kept the video up almost all of the time so I could watch it again. But, I knew I didn’t have it in the budget to sign up. I kept waiting for some kind of financial miracle that didn’t occur.

So…the course began and I kept trying to tell myself that it didn’t matter, that it was OK if I didn’t get to take it. Meanwhile, I’m in the throes of dealing with the super-challenging behavior from Peter and getting more and more bogged down. Finally, Friday, I decided to see if there were a possibility of joining late. There was! So, on Monday, I signed up, with a financial contribution from Jacob.

I am already getting so much out of this course. I am already encouraged and energized by the exercises. My life may be one filled with challenges and responsibilities, but I am going to craft my best life.

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More Inspiration

Well, Tim has run off with my camera, again. So, I will have to post the ONE craft item I managed to squeeze in this week at a later date. Which probably explains my not-too-stellar attitude….

Anyway, thankfully, there are things like THIS to inspire me on weeks when all I can manage is looking at other people’s crafts.

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Want Some Inspiration to Keep On Keepin’ On?

There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep yourself open and aware to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. … No artist is pleased. [There is] no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others. -Agenes de Mille, The Life and Work of Martha Graham.

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My “Tool Box”

As I’ve mentioned, both of my gramas taught me to embroider. Throughout my childhood, my Grama Coffman would reach into this box to get some embroidery thread for my projects.

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Don’t you just love the flowers?

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And now I reach into it every single day to get my embroidery thread–and my needles, thimbles, scissors–for my projects. I even keep my projects, themselves, in this box.

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Groovy, eh?

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MOPS Crafting

We had our first Mothers of Pre-schoolers meeting this week. And, as I’ve mentioned, the theme is Momology: The Art and Science of Mothering. One of the components of this theme involves developing resilience as a mom and one of the activities associated with developing resilience is building a “Resilience Box” filled with things that help us develop our resilience. So…this first meeting, we decorated our Resilience Boxes to reflect our personalities.

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I had a lot of fun finding words and images…

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cutting and gluing….

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And what’s inside?

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Oh, look. It’s some of the extra little MOPS business card holders that Amelia made based on my Silver Bella pal, Lynn’s, awesome (as usual) idea. These cards and card holders were the first addition to the Resilience Boxes because participating in MOPS definitely helps us develop resilience as moms!

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So…I got in a little Whole Life Crafting this week at MOPS.

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Crafting Treasures

This weekend, I was on a mission to make an early morning bakery order delivery. Sweet Eleanor’s love language is quality time so I invited her to wake up early with me and ride along to chat and hang out together. She eagerly agreed to my plan.

We were done with the delivery by 7:15 am, but we weren’t done chatting or hanging out together, so we moseyed over to a crafts-only garage sale I had heard advertised on the radio last week. Oh, my.

Does this make your heart go pitter-pat or what?

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How about this?

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This?

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Or this?

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Or this?

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Yeah. Me, too. And my heart was really pitter-pattering when the nice lady hosting this garage sale let me have all of that embroidery floss for $5.

Eleanor and I got some other stuff, too…which we’ll probably show you on another post.

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Whole Life Crafting

I have so many crafting ideas in my head waiting to be executed that sometimes it feels like my allotted daily crafting time just isn’t enough to get all of the crafting done that I want to. This week, I felt like the whole week had passed without my getting anywhere near as much crafting accomplished as I would have liked. Then, I looked around and realized that I had been crafting all week…just not in the ways I had anticipated. For example…

…we made several Cinderella “flip” dolls this week:

3 flip dolls

We got the idea from The Storytime Craft Book by Kathy Ross. I am totally digging this book. I hope to own it, soon.

Eleanor's flip doll

Doesn’t Cinderella have a marvelous transformation?

Eleanor's flip doll 2

We also made The Three Bears, another idea from this groovy book.

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We’re having an encore performance–with Margaret as Goldilocks–right after supper tonight.

And if those two projects didn’t provide enough crafting for me this week, Amelia and I also pulled together the name tags for MOPS. This first meeting is Tuesday and I’m very excited about the theme: Momology: The Art and Science of Mothering. (Hence, the “art” name tags.)

MOPS nametags

And to top off my craftings this week, I made some origami with Charlotte at the Keepers and Contenders Club meeting yesterday afternoon.

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Yes, I’m afraid that I cannot even begin to complain that I didn’t spend enough time crafting this week.

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