Using as much time as I can sneak away for myself, I have been excitedly making product (I'll share soon) to be offered at next month's Arts Alive. I was invited to show as part of a Design Collective. I'm excited both that I was invited and that I have, for the first time ever I think, thought of ONE THING that I would be happy making many of to (hopefully) sell that night. Stay tuned!
In the meantime....several months ago I saw this 8x10 inch frame in a clearance section at Michaels. It was marked down because the glass was missing.
Between me and you, I think it should've been marked down because it was so odd looking, almost ugly, really. But within seconds of seeing it I had a *vision* of what could be done with it. So I paid the three dollars for it and stored it with the other piles in the garage. Recently I was in the right creative space to feel like putting the plan into action. First I spray painted it Garden Green and then I pulled this old chest of fun plastic flower bits and beads out
and sat watching tv with John for several evenings while I wired "plastic flower sandwiches" together. Many many plastic flower sandwiches. I'm happy that it came out just like I had envisioned it.
A couple more evenings were spent spreading them about the frame and wiring them onto it. I finally ran out of biggish flowers and also ran out of room to get in there and do the wiring, so then I started hot-gluing smaller flowers here and there. Today I went and had a mirror cut for it.
I at first thought I'd display small jewelry on it, but now I think it's too busy for that.
Maybe just lay my business cards in the center when I'm out showing? Hmmm. Do I even need a purpose for it? It's fun and happy AND I used some of my stash! A win-win.
Today I'm feeling grateful. So grateful in fact that I even had a frozen turkey in my shopping cart this morning because I wanted to have a Giving of Thanks, but then put it back realizing we can give Thanks without all the trimmings.
I'm grateful that Heirloom tomatoes finally showed up at the Farmer's Market today.
I'm grateful that our weather is so cool that we can grow these delicate flowers in August. In California!
I'm grateful that Proposition Hate (8) has been overturned by a federal judge. How crazy was that in the first place anyway?
I'm grateful that my husband was home today to eat this plate of food for lunch.
On Monday night John said his chest hurt, and back into his shoulders. He thought it was probably heartburn, seeing as he's still such a young stud (in his mind) what else could it be? He slept in another room moaning all night but when I offered to take him to the hospital he said, "No. Just let me moan." . So I basically wrote him off as being a big baby. The next morning I googled his symptoms and felt pretty sure it was a heart issue, so I texted him to go straight to the ER. Which he did. We sat around expecting the blood test results to be just fine, but they were not. They indicated he had in fact a heart issue going on. So they admitted him and kept him hooked up to monitors overnight, waiting to take a treadmill stress test in the AM. We just knew he'd pass and then come home, but he did not. That afternoon they did an angioplasty and found not one but two blockages, at which points stents were inserted. It's amazing how they have streamlined this work, and that today, less than 48 hours after going to the ER with a heart attack, he was able to get up and walk out and come home. Why am I telling you this, when I usually keep the personal stuff off the blog? I have a few reasons.
One is that John is healthier now at 58 than when I met him at 42. He weighs about 25 pounds less now than he ever did, as a result of us eating healthier foods here at home (I do almost all my food shopping around the perimeter of the store now...not up and down the aisles.) He also walks the 5 or 6 miles every time he golfs (which is a lot) as opposed to driving the cart he used to own. So why the heart attack now? Largely Because of the choices he made when he was younger. So if you're under 50 and still reading this; TAKE HEED! In fact, I've never forgotten hearing about a study done on young American soldiers who were sent home in body bags from Vietnam in the 60's. Their average age was 19 and it was astounding the plaque they already had in their arteries. NOW is the time to lose weight, quit smoking, start exercising.
Two is that a typical heart attack isn't what we've come to expect from the movies; where the person dramatically grabs their chest and falls to the ground. It can go on for hours and manifest in a myriad of ways. Pay attention if yourself or someone around you may be having these symptoms.
Three...I am unable to to write a succinct sentence or two but hopefully this story will illustrate: In the bed next to John was a man 10 years older who had come in with the same issues. He was SO mean and cranky and ungrateful. The whole two days we were there. He would yell at the nurses and aides as if he was King Freaking Tut. John and I quickly realized he was just scared and alone (NO ONE came to visit him), but you can imagine the effects on one's health when they are just so darned crusty all the time! Last night the dinner was pasta with meat sauce. John and I sat there happily munching it wondering how much it would cost (we have no insurance) but not caring 'cause it was good and we were hungry. The man in the next bed was yelling "How is anyone supposed to eat this crap!? I can't believe I have to pay for this!!" He in fact won't be paying a dime, as he has both Medicare and MediCal. I listened to what the cardiac doc told him last night; that when they had done his angioplasty they broke three balloons trying to open them in his heart because his arteries are so calcified (can you just picture that? I see a piece of driftwood) and there is no choice but open-heart surgery. His reply was that he may have to wait on that til he finds a BETTER facility with more comfortable beds and better food. So there! Yesterday morning I walked in to find John working a deal on his cell phone. A half-million dollar deal that was supposed to close today was about to fall apart. The appraisal had come in $15,000 light from the accepted price and a bank won't finance anything over the appraisal. John called the client and asked, "If you had the $15,000 to throw in the deal would you still want to buy it?" The client said Yes. So John called the title company back and said, "If we let this deal fall apart, I don't get paid, the seller loses the house to the bank and my buyer doesn't get the house. If I throw in my commission (almost exactly the shortage) I still don't get paid, but the buyer and the seller win. Throw in my commission. I'm sure my buyer will make good on it when he can." I really don't know another Realtor who would do that, let alone one in the hospital facing his own frailties for the first time. John literally danced out of that hospital this morning with a huge smile on his face, happy to be alive.
I'm not saying it's ALL in the attitude and putting forth good karma...I'm sure some of you know good people who lead loving and harmonious lives yet have had bad health experiences, but I really do think it makes a difference. Sure can't hurt to stay positive in the face of adversity, right?
That's the end of my story. It was a good day and I feel very grateful. :-)
I have a pretty big finish to share. Well, it's not actually finished, but I'm pretty pleased that it has reached it's current phase of completion. I had to go all the way back to Oct of 08 to remember when I started it. Here's the *before* picture from that post
And here's where they stand today:
That's 1250 yo-yos sewn into 50 5x5 squares. I sat watching tv with John and working on them most nights. Took them every time I did a flea market or craft sale. Always in this little bag Monica gifted me when I visited her in OR a couple years ago.
Hey! Speaking of Monica, look just behind the finished yoyos up there. It's her wonderful new holiday fabric sitting patiently waiting to be used.
I won't be surprised if the next step takes nearly as long--sewing them all down to this 'base'
and then sandwiching it to a back.
I think I'm going to miss sewing yo-yos! Don't know if I should start another project using them or pick up that counted cross-stitch that got put aside before the turn of the century.