May 21

Confederates in the Attic

It began with a childhood fascination with the Civil War and culminated in this book about America’s continuing obsession with The War Between the States.  This book reads like a personal adventure filled with tragic, fun and curious stories; but amid all the disparate subjects and characters, you get a sense of how the Civil War shaped America and still has incredible significance and presence to this day.

Posted by lori . Filed under Few and Well Chosen (Books) | 5 Comments

May 20

Eye of the Needle

Eye of the Needle is a 1981 movie based on the book of the same name by Ken Follett.  Donald Sutherland is “die Nadel,” a German spy in Britain during WWII who gathers vital information about the D-day invasion and must get it back to his superiors in Germany.  On his way back to Germany, a storm strands him on an island off the coast of Scotland.  There he meets Lucy and…you’ll just have to watch the movie and see what happens.  This is a spy thriller and a romance, and it works convincingly on both fronts.

 

Posted by lori . Filed under A Bowl of Popcorn, a Movie and Thou (Movies) | 3 Comments

May 19

Zipper = Flower

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April Showers Bring May Flowers

Inspiration:

McCall’s Pattern #M6047 (This is the same pattern I used to make the rick rack flower.)

Supplies:

Zipper

Thread

Needle

Pliers

Scissors

1.  Separate the zipper sections.

2.  Since I was using a short zipper, I sewed the two pieces together and trimmed off the extra material.  If the zipper material frays, apply fabric glue to prevent further fraying.

3.  Using heavy thread, hand gather 1/8″ from the outside edge of the zipper.

4.  Adjust gathers tightly.

5.  To form the flower, start at one end and roll the flower towards you, securing the layers as you roll.  Sew down the edge to finish.

6.  Now that is one edgy flower!

 

Posted by lori . Filed under Look What I Found! Now What Do I Do With It? (Crafts) | 2 Comments

May 18

Happy 4th Birthday, Freedom!

Saturday, May 14th was Freedom’s 4th Birthday!  Happy Birthday, Freedom!  Freedom’s racing name was Free Spitfire.  We thought about changing her name when we got her…because Freedom didn’t sound like a good “girl’ name.  We tried Sara, Beanie and several others, but none of them seemed right.  Finally, I was calling her “our girl doggie.”  It was at that point, we had to admit that “Freedom” was the right name for her.  Freedom is confident, independent, friendly, lovable and sometimes a little bratty (in the best kind of way).  We often ask ourselves, “Where would we be, without our Freedom!” (best said with a Scottish accent in the tradition of Braveheart…blue face paint not required).

When I announced I was doing 4 Faves – Friends Version in May, my friend Amy brought over some of her favorite things to show me.  While she was showing me her favorite Kyjen dog toys, Freedom came over and gently took the toy from Amy and proceeded to play with it.  That’s a pretty good recommendation; so I bought some for Freedom, for her birthday.

Greyhounds are fun to buy toys for because they LOVE toys.  Our first greyhound, Paloma, loved toys…she loved them to DEATH.  The objective for Paloma was simple.  Find the squeaker, kill the squeaker, remove the squeaker and finally, remove all the stuffing.  Done.  Next, please.  We never found a toy, no matter the price or the promise, that Paloma couldn’t accomplish her mission on.  There was only one qualification for Paloma’s toys…cheap.

Freedom and Casper are gentler with their toys, so it’s fun to buy them nicer toys.

Kyjen toys are durable (remember, that is a relative term), have sewn on eyes, and they’re interactive.

Freedom and Casper both enjoyed the new toys.  The birthday fun didn’t stop there.  They both got a birthday bath and then a favorite treat…ICE CREAM!  Happy Birthday, Freedom!

Posted by lori . Filed under Greyt Hounds (Greyhounds) | 7 Comments

May 17

4 Faves – Friends Version 3.0

May’s 4 Faves all come from my friends.  Check out what they like.

Hourglass Film Noir Mascara

This is my friend, Amy’s, favorite mascara.  She loves it because it doesn’t clump and it doesn’t flake.  She says it makes your lashes look like beautiful, fine fringe.  Here’s a great review on Makeup and Beauty Blog if you want a little more information.

Sloggers

I have to get me a pair of these!  Another favorite of Amy’s; they’re cute, comfortable and waterproof.

Deanne Pace – Works in Metal

My new friend, Mayzie, suggested this fave.  Deanne’s jewelry speaks for itself…BEAUTIFUL!  Plus, a portion of Deanne’s dog-themed jewelry is donated to animal-related charities.  Deanne also has a fun blog, Road Dog Tales.

Mr. Clean Magic Eraser

This fave comes from my friend, Lori.  She is the Director of Facility Care for Granger Community Church and she KNOWS cleaning.  This is one of her favorite things, and I think that says a lot.  One day, we noticed that one of the walls had a paint mark on it.  Lori grabbed a Magic Eraser and removed the paint we didn’t want from the paint we did want…like magic.

 

 

Posted by lori . Filed under 4 Faves (Favorite Things) | 4 Comments

May 16

Mess…Week 2

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Fill this tree with interesting things.

(I filled it with beautiful words.)

This month, I’m playing my way through the book Mess by Keri Smith.

Last week, I started working my way through some of the exercises (click here to see that post).  The thing that struck me the most was: 1. My life is filled with wonderful things that I do and that I enjoy.  2. These activities support and enrich the life I have and the life I love.  3  Something is missing.  That “something” is taking the time to play, to dream, to experiment.  I want to change that.  I think that everyone reading this understands my challenge because it is the same challenge we all face…where do I find the time?

I started blogging in January, sort of on a whim.  I felt the pull to reconnect to my “creative” side, so I started on a journey to do that.  It’s five months later and this journey has become VERY important to me.  Much more important than I ever imagined.  So what does that mean?  For me, I need to reexamine every aspect of my life and reassess my priorities and the way I use my time.

So how do I do that?  I’m going to start by reviewing some resources on time management and goal setting to see if I can gain some clarity and skill in making a shift in my life.  That leads me to ask you, “What have you done when you’ve decided to pursue a new goal or had a change in your life that caused you to have to “shake things up” and change some of your priorities and habits?  Do you have any favorite books or web resources that have been helpful?  I’d love to hear from you!

Enough of that…let’s play!

1.  Drip some kind of colored liquid here (ink, watercolor, tea, juice, etc.).

2.  Move the book so that it runs in all directions.

3.  Let dry.

Alternate:  Blow liquid with a straw, or fold page to create a symmetrical inkblot.

(I dropped fabric paint on the page and blew on it with my mouth.)

Abrasion test.  Sand this image until it is gone.

(I sanded it until I liked it.  Then I stopped.)

1.  Think of an object.

2.  Try to draw it by tearing.

(This is a greyhound.)

Alter this image, or deface it to change the meaning of it completely.

(It was a group of dudes; now it’s a group of chicks.)

 

Posted by lori . Filed under Creating the Creator (Creativity) | 4 Comments

May 15

Creative Space – After (Part 4)


Bookcases – After

Here’s what I’m work on this month in my creative space.  If you’re new to What Remains Now or just want a review, here’s what’s happened so far…January, February, March and April.

One of my goals is to get all the things I work with into this space.  That hasn’t happened so far, and I haven’t been working on projects as I would like to be doing.  I’ve been slowly gathering things up, but mainly I’ve been using my creative space more as a dumping ground.  Here’s what that starts to looks like if you don’t have a plan.

Bookcases – Before

It’s evident to me that I need to get to work on storage.  I’m currently re-doing the closet, so that will play an important role, but I wanted to get this mess cleaned up before it became a big problem.  One of the most important steps in organizing and creating a system that works is setting limits and having a specific place for everything.  This is critical for me because I have “hoarder” tendencies.  Setting limits makes it easier for me to see when I’m getting out of control.

The following list is not complete; it’s just a place for me to start thinking.  Here’s what I need space for:

1.  Items I’ve purchased to re-purpose (top shelves of bookcases)

2.  Supplies like buttons, ribbon, wire, etc. (bookcase shelves and drawers)

I found these great containers at Target.  They fit perfectly in the drawers.

3.  Fabric & yarn (closet)

4.  Items listed on Etsy (closet)

5.  Projects I’m working on (bookcase shelves)

6.  Patterns and inspiration files (bookcase shelves and closet)

7.  Paint, glue, brushes, etc. (bookcase shelves)

The only thing I did this month for the closet was select and purchase the paint.  I’m painting it “Season’s Promise” a fresh yellow-y green.

I’m going to quit goofing around with this and get all my things gathered up so I know what I have.  Let’s see what I have to show you in June!

Posted by lori . Filed under Want to Talk About (Whatever) | 6 Comments

May 14

The Great Gatsby

When I think of the 1920’s, I think of The Great Gatsby.  Published in 1925, it is the story of Jay Gatsby and his love for Daisy Buchanan.  Daisy is old-money; Gatsby is new-money.  The writing is beautiful and the characters and scenes will stay in your mind always.  It deals with money, obsession, greed and the hope of a new beginning.  It is the story of the 1920’s, and a story for all time.

Posted by lori . Filed under Few and Well Chosen (Books) | 2 Comments

May 13

Revolutionary Road

Revolutionary Road is based on the book of the same name, written in 1961.  It looks at conformity in the 1950’s, but you will see that not much has changed and the subject matter is completely applicable today.  It deals with the hopes and aspirations of a suburbanite couple and looks at the price of giving up on our dreams.  Revolutionary Road can be an uncomfortable movie to watch, because it makes you consider things you’ve given up on and compromised in your life.  It is a tragic movie, but it beautifully captures a struggle we all must deal with.

Posted by lori . Filed under A Bowl of Popcorn, a Movie and Thou (Movies) | 2 Comments

May 12

Paper = Pinwheel Flower

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April Showers Bring May Flowers

Inspiration:

Running With Glitter – Guest Blogger live.love.photograph

Supplies:

Paper

Scissors (I used a paper cutter)

Glue Stick

Hot Glue Gun

Button & Twine (or some decoration for the center of the flower)

1.  Cut two strips of paper.  I cut my strips 2-1/2″ x 12″.  This makes a very large flower!

2.  Accordion fold the strips of paper.

3.  Glue the two strips of paper together to form a circle.

4.  Pinch one side together and push down to create the pinwheel.

5.  Apply a generous drop of hot glue to the center.  Hold it down until it dries.

6.  Glue the button to the center.

7.  You now have a beautiful paper flower to make into a bouquet or glue on to a pretty card.

Posted by lori . Filed under Look What I Found! Now What Do I Do With It? (Crafts) | 4 Comments