Saturday, April 30, 2016

meditation- wreck it journal

My youngest sister has a way of locating odd things I wouldn't find.  As an example, our whole family now has a Wreck This Journal.

The whole premise is to find ways to wreck the journal, but with prompts. I find it both meditative and cathartic.  But, it is also incredibly lovely in the way it gets you to open up creatively. There are prompts that tell you just to number the pages randomly. Or to spill your drink on it, drag it behind you, take it in the shower.

I am going to start sharing various ways I am meditating and relaxing my creative tensions every week. Here is your first look into my Wreck-it Journal:

prompt- fill the page with circles
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Friday, April 29, 2016

DIY- Collapsible dog water dish

A few years ago, I was playing with Vinyl Fuse.  What is Vinyl Fuse? Well, essentially, it is iron on vinyl covering.  I am a lover of laminate (as you should know by now...). Laminated small scale projects is a favorite activity of mine, especially if you cannot get that fabric laminated in the factory.

Now that we have a new dog that we take everywhere, I knew we needed something to get that guy water in. It's easy to carry around a bottle of water.  Less so to carry around a bowl... therefore:

I present to you the Collapsible Water Bowl!

It folds, wedges into cup holders and is all around awesome. I keep one in the car and tend to make them for friends that are dog lovers as well. It isn't just for dogs though...

You can get the tutorial here, happy spring, dog lovers! (and cats tooooooo)

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Craft Social Preview- Embroidery

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I have had such a great time teaching sewing this school year! With the summer approaching, my schedule changes with the boys schedule. I will be in Hillsboro much more this summer, and looking to facilitate learning of craft here.  To that end, I am starting a weekly Craft Social.
The Craft Social will be a small group for 2 hours on Tuesday evenings when we can get together and do a project. I will be on hand to help with the craft, but this is really a group event. FOr the first one we are going to work on little embroidery projects. As an example I thought I would share with you some projects I recently did to renew my embroidery fandom.

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It is known on this blog how much I love Lucky Jackson's illustration. I adore that she sells embroidery patterns that I can create in my own way. They become a little bit of an addiction. I've put them all up in the new house, and I have added these two recently. While I have practice with these and the 3 hours they take me is reasonable, the craft social attendees will leave with all the supplies to finish their project IF they don't finish in the 2 hour timeline.

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This style isn't for everybody though. So I have a multitude of small embroidery projects to choose from as well as sweet little mini hoop frames for creating little necklaces.  The little creature above is one Murphy is getting ready to start for his teacher.  Right now it looks like a weird blob, but when it's done, well, I am sure it will be fabulous.

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If you are ready to have a little social crafting session, contact me at and check out for sign up info. The cost is for materials only, of which you will keep and take home. These include: pattern, needle, embroider floss, small frame or large frame depending.  I encourage you to bring a photograph we can copy to create one of a kind personal art for you and your family!

These social are held in my home.  I ask you to respect this fact.  Fair warning, I have 2 cats and a dog.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

back to natural remedies

Hawley came home from school today, teary eyed and trying to tell me what had happened. Essentially 5th grade is hard. Especially when you switch from old familiar well loved school (central oregon) to 2 new schools in one year.
In addition to the many things I have told him (drink some water, write it down, talk to the counselor, is this a big problem or a small one, can you talk to the kid directly to solve your problem? ) we are using some Essential Oil blends to help our tensions.
I want him to be able to handle conflict and the resolution of these issues better than I do. But, when you come home tired, crying and worn out, a hug is the best medicine.

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So we hugged, he talked and then we made a little roller ball to help him out.  What is a rollerball? Well, let's talk Essential Oils friends.

In the past, I have used Essential Oils mostly for Aromatherapy.  Adding them to lotions, my bath, cleaning products, etc. But, when we moved, we started seeing a lot of upset in the boys and ourselves.  From trouble sleeping as we were settling, to dealing with these headaches at school. I've also been using E.O.'s to help combat my Fibromyalgia and relax my anxiety.
Yes, I drank the Kool-Aid, joined up, am a member, all of those things.  I am part of doTERRA Essential Oils now, and I am here to help you! Over the next few weeks I am going to share some of my favorite combos and uses of E.O.'s.

I've been focused on gathering recipes and creating combos that work for my family and friends. Outside of straight lavender to help soothe, I put all of my recipes into a 10 ml roller ball. A roller ball is the little part that gets coated in the oil and transfers it to your skin. These are great because you can carry them easily, apply them easily and make them fast.

Here are some of my favorite helpful mood combos for roller ball application.  When you are applying these, try to choose some target areas of fast absorption.  These include the wrists, behind the ears, and bottom of the feet.

Lady Time:
20 drops Clary Sage
15 drops Lavender
5 drops Frankincense

top with Fractionated Coconut Oil(F.C.O.)

15 drops lemon
15 drops Frankincense
top with F.C.O.

Mellow Mama:
25 drops Citrus Bliss
10 drops Hawaiian Sandalwood
10 drops Patchouli
10 drops Ylang Ylang
top with F.C.O.

Monsters be gone: 
30 drops Balance
30 drops Citrus Bliss
top with F.C.O 

Peace Child: (highly concentrated use with caution, cut recipe in half if needed)
85 drops Vetiver
30 drops Ylang Ylang
20 drops Frankincense
15 drops Clary Sage
10 drops Marjoram
30 drops Lavender

top with Fractionated Coconut Oil

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All of these blends are awesome but doTERRA has proprietary blends that I find incredibly lovely. The top of the list is OnGuard, I use this year round for helping with immunity.
I also LOVE LOVE LOVE the OnGuard toothpaste from doTERRA.

Then I have been using Console most frequently at night.  I will  put these on a MadreBeads Lyndon Diffuser necklace, or a drop on the mattress near my head for sleep. You can also diffuse these throughout a room with a water diffuser.

And Motivate, a truly useful blend that I use before teaching, creating, or just cleaning the house:

I have some classes offered through Nic and Fig's where we tackle specific issues surrounding us and how to use essential oils to help.  With the Nic and Fig's classes we make something each time.  Whether it is a rollerball or a counter top spray or therapeutic play-doh!

You can also order directly from me:
I am available to chat via Skype or email, or facetime if you are so inclined or have questions you want answers to as fast as possible. Just shoot me a message and we can arrange a time. With every order you get directly through me I will give you 10% off retail and send you a rollerball to get you started!
For more Inspiration Check out my Essential Oils board on Pinterest!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016


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I've been thinking about relationships lately. How we define boundaries and create fulfilling relations online and in real life. I wonder about myself. I wonder how my sarcasm effects the people I meet. Do I offend them? How? Why? Why haven't they talked to me about it? Why haven't I told the people that have "rubbed my fur backwards" that I am unhappy? Is that what being nice is? Hiding our true selves to save others? Or am I just scared to confront, are they?

As an artist and a teacher, I have to take criticism with a brave face. Even when I know that the points are valid and I can learn and grow there is a little part of my drive that dies out. Often it spurs me in a new direction as it has recently, but other times it feels a little like picking up your piece of cake to discover its really poo.
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As I change directions slightly, and edit my relationships to their proper boundaries, I wonder, have I lost friends? Or were they ever? Or are they really just bosses and clients and customers and I was confused?

So it's a few days later, and I spent hours driving today for a sewing machine that was supposed to be a  "good deal" (that is yet to be seen). It is a part of the editing and changing, but may just end up being baggage.
I spent the 3 hours considering many things.  Listening to ODESZA and petting Ralphie, travelling at 70 mph in a little trance on I5. I thought about my insecurities. I thought about my strengths. I remembered relationships I thought I had forgotten, bringing me back to my theme for this last week.

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Have you considered how your own relationships are?  Are they healthy?  Do they promote a sense of pride in you? A sense of security?  Can you rely on the people in your life to be around when you need them> are you around when they need you?

I know that I tend to be protective of people I love. I try to make things easier for them at my own expense. Whether that is emotionally or monetarily expensive is about the situation. At the same time, I think I fail to see or hear what people really need from me.  If you have ever heard Brene Brown talk about empathy, it's enlightening. I always thought I was a kind person, but maybe I am more selfish than I would like to think.

I am slowly looping back to my original thought on relationships. The real life ones and the ones on the internet. I have met many people through the internet. Many creative incredibly driven people. I always feel a sense of wonder at how they get it all done? cleaning, cooking, parent teacher conferences, designing web sites, blogging, sewing, painting, vacationing... it goes on and on.  I am consistently confused by the time management. Then I realize, like most things on the internet, it is the best foot forward.  You don't see the screaming toddler, the insanely tired woman, the piles of laundry. You don't see the words of someone trying to figure out how to get their toddler to stop shouting, or the mother hoping her teenage son has been paying attention and isn't being an idiot.

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So I have hope. I hope that this most recent little reset will renew some creative pursuits that fell into a side drawer. I hope that I can do the tasks on my house list and my business list. It's a beautiful day so to start with, I am going to go for a walk in my new community and take it all in.

All of it.

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Thursday, March 24, 2016

back in the sewing saddle again

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Part of my lapse in blogging has also transferred to my personal sewing.  I have been sewing a lot, still daily. But it has been pattern prep and samples for classes. I love this, but I haven't sewn anything for me. Whether it is curtains for the house, or t-shirts for the boys. I decided it was time. So of course, I choose lingerie of unusual materials because... why would I choose something simple?

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In the end, I had 2 that need disassembled and then this Watson set that is ugly as all get out on the inside.  I made it from a stretch silk, and while it feels lovely, it barely passes as "I know how to sew".

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I did make another, but the photos were not working out well.  It is a bright bright pink and no matter how I fix the white balance/saturation it still looks like it underwent radiation in a cartoon. It is one of  my favorite watson hacks though. I did the same thing to my bikini last year.  I'm getting back into it... slowly.

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Tuesday, March 22, 2016

New House- where I sew

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You may remember I have mentioned that we moved.  Across the state. Back to the area we consider home in our hearts.  Part of the getting of a new house means renovating, painting, and moving in. When Melissa of A Happy Stitch was talking about a post on her sewing space, I jumped at the chance.
Here is the first looks at where I sew...when I get to sew.

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My little sewing machine corner is very peaceful. I hung a Himmeli I made at Nic and Figs up to catch some light as well as a favorite tea towel turned wall hanging.
That sewing box in the corner has been with me since I was a very little girl. before that it was my mothers. I still have a Strawberry Shortcake pin on it.  Last year while I was working in the school district one of my students gave me a little note that said," You are awesome". So I put that up where I could see it and remind myself every time I sew.

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I've got it set up in a "u" of function. When you first come in you have the ironing board to the left and the computer to the right, followed by the cutting table and sewing machine and ending in the pretty storage area (we will get to the not pretty storage area).
There is still screen printing supplies and other miscellaneous crafting items to be unpacked.  For now they are still in boxes reminding me that I have more to do.
I also need to decide on curtains as those blinds are hideous and gross.  Hubs hung a tension wire for me to put said curtains on, I just haven't gotten there yet...

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I used to have pretty chairs in here. I discovered the hours I spend in this room need an old comfy office chair. I took this one from my mom's house, she had more than enough... I may cover it in something nicer, eventually.

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Since Ralphie follows me from room to room, we commandeered a star wars throw as a make shift bed under the table. eventually I will make him a better one.  However, every time I make a nice dog bed the cat steals it.

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And here is the "messy" storage zone. The reality of my fabric storage at this point is Rubbermaid. I keep everything in varying sizes of Semi-see through containers. This closet will get an overhaul as soon as I figure out what will fit and where.  For now, I know where everything is... mostly.

Melissa has a beautiful spot to show us today, so get on over to A Happy Stitch and check it out.  I would also take any advice for my messy closet... I've got a whole pinterest board, but I can always use more suggestions.

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My janome and I have been together for 8+ years. I have no desire to upgrade and that is ssaying something about the machines you use in your work. The ink stamps on a couple buttons has worn off yet she remains sticker free.  I think that eventually we will have a 20 year number of years together as she is my favorite and my best.