Tuesday, December 31, 2013

My Word for the Year

Last year we were challenged to take some time and think about what would be our word for the new year.  My word was "breathe" and I blogged about it here. It turned out to be a very appropriate word. I learned to breathe through some new health issues that hung around much longer than desired, through having a storm delay our youngest daughter's high school graduation for a whole day, through finding out that sleep apnea and now means a CPAP machine is a regular part of life, through learning how to be an empty nester, and finally having to put our sweet kitty to sleep the day after Christmas. I am counting my blessings, though, because so many have had to deal with so much more.

This year, my word is "soak". I looked up the definition which includes to lie in, and become permeated or saturated with liquid; to take a long bath; to steep, as for the purpose of softening or freshening; or to draw in. I'm not a big tub person, but every once in a while I take a long, soaking bath. It brings rest, refreshment, and quiets my body and soul. God is slowing me down this year with some changes in my schedule, and my heart is to soak in His presence. I want to absorb His love, His peace, His joy, and His creativity so that I am permeated. Isaiah 30:15 says “In returning and rest you shall be saved; In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.”. I'm ready for some soaking time.

What's your word for the year? I'd love to hear what you've chosen and why.

Before I go, here's a collage of pictures of our sweet kitty, Jade. She was part of our life for almost 15 years and I'm glad we had one last Christmas with her.
So, here's to 2014 and a New Year that waits with wonderful possibilities,and one hopefully full of dashes of grace and splashes of joy!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Short but sweet

As you may recall, back in September I was invited to join the ZNet Shows Design Team. I shared one post where I participated in a lightning round challenge for 7000 Bracelets for Hope, which was a lot of fun. We were also asked at the time if we'd like to be part of the Winter edition of Creative Spark which would feature pearls. I was on board with that! Well, it's out now, and chock full of beautiful designs as well as a couple of tutorials. It's a honor to be part of it ( you can find me starting on page 47, and then at the back). Merry Christmas to me!! Click on the image below to see all the lovelies ( I'm jumping up and down right now because I figured out how to insert HTML to make it work). Hope did an amazing job of putting this all together, so a big shout to her.

Glossi.com - Creative Spark Winter 13-14
Click to view Creative Spark Winter 13-14 on GLOSSI.COM

Hope it adds a splash of joy and a dash of grace to your day like it did for mine!


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

.ABS Ornament Blog Hop: It's a Narnia Kind of Thing..

This is my second year participating in the ABS Ornament Blog Hop hosted by Heather Powers of Humble Beads.  When pondering the possibilities, I fell in love  Heather's Woodland Evergreen holiday pendant, and immediately thought of one of my favorite books, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. C.S. Lewis is a favorite author of mine, and I've read the series ( as well as many other books of his) numerous times. While it's an entertaining read, he weaves all sorts of wonderful truths into the story and it becomes a lovely allegory. With that in mind, and loving the annealed steel wire that others have recommended, here's what I came up with:
Into Narnia

If you're a Narnia kind of person, there's a few little things built into this. The dark wire reminded immediately of the lamppost that Lucy sees upon entering. Wrapped inside the first bundle is a crystal to emulate said lamppost. There are four beads- two lava blue ones for Edmund and Peter in the main body of the ornament, and two crystal ones for Lucy and Susan. If you've read through the series ( I won't spoil it for you) you could see also where the wrapped crystal bead represents Susan, and the big, clear crystal symbolizes Lucy. It needed a little texture, and I couldn't find anything that seemed to go with it, until  spotting the raffia.  It was an aha! moment when I knew it would represent Aslan's mane.

Here's another view:
This isn't the greatest picture, but it's hanging on my new topiary ( gotta love Pinterest) that I've been dying to make and finally got done yesterday :) By now you know that I also love Rhonna Designs, so a shout out to her wonderful picture app.

One final peek:
Here's a couple of favorite quotes about Aslan:

"Safe?” said Mr. Beaver; “don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”

“Wrong will be right, when Aslan comes in sight,
At the sound of his roar, sorrows will be no more,
When he bares his teeth, winter meets its death,
And when he shakes his mane, we shall have spring again.”
C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

Here's wishing you and yours a Merry Christmas, the wonder of Narnia, an encounter with the Son of the Emperor, and a season filled with joy and grace.


Stop on by the rest of the participants...