May 14, 2018

Crafting as Healing

Recently, I've been going through a tough time with the loss of a pretty big piece of my life (job). I'm struggling with being back at the job search, missing the work I was doing,  and finding somewhere where my skills and desire to help people fit. It's a process. Part of my process for dealing with change has always been healing hurts in my life through crafting, so of course a trip to visit my parents resulted in my mom and I going to a quilting show, buying some fabric (thanks Mom!) and making some fancy pillows for my couch. My partner always jokes that we don't ever just hang out, we "work' which is true in a sense, but I think that my mom and I do our best hanging out while we are tackling a sewing project or an organizing project. Or maybe my family is just weird, who's to say?

At any rate, I've wanted some of these pillows for a long time. My mom has some pillows like this on her couch and has also made some for my sister. The awesome part about them is that they're stuffed with all the scraps of fabric and batting from all of my mom's other projects, which makes them reusable friendly and super heavy and firm, which is amazing for couch pillows that need to stand up to lots of use! They're roughly 19' by 19", have a zipper so the covers can be removed to wash them, and are quilted free-hand with a walking foot on the sewing machine. My mom's good advice for the free-hand quilting was to have a plan and to let the fabric guide you as to the design that you make. I think they turned out pretty great! The inside of the pillows is lined with flour sack tea towels and the actual pillow part is also made of this flour sack material. There is just something amazing and healing about taking some fabric, gathering other materials and creating something out of nothing that is useful, taps into your creativity and allows you to spend some time creating and chatting with wonderful people.

Other things I'm currently loving for their healing properties:

  • Audio books to keep me focused-especially ones on minimalism. I just finished The Year of Less by Cait Flanders and I'm currently listening to You are a Badass by Jen Singero. Hoopla is amazing and free with a library card. 
  • New car! Bad timing, but I just purchased my first car and am loving being able to easily go for a family or friend visit, as well as expand the regions I'm able to job search in
  • Harry Potter Rifftrax-combining my love of Harry Potter with my love of making fun of movies.
  • Puppy cuddles. 
  • Sunshine and things growing in the park
  • Amazing and supportive friends in my life.
  • "Unicorns are real" bullet journal for keeping me organized
  • Remembering the amazing healing of blogging and journaling to help me document my accomplishments and actions

Aug 26, 2017

Getting my Crafting Mojo Back

every day may not be good quote

Recently I've been off after having surgery to get my gallbladder removed (NOT FUN) but have finally been starting to feel better generally and able to get up to some crafting. I hadn't realized how ill and stressed I've been this year with all the gallbladder issues until I thought about when the last time I'd done some crafting was! It had been a long time! I ended up playing around with some paints and some scrapbooking stickers I had and made this canvas. I also sealed it with Mod Podge to keep the letters on with somewhat bumpy results. :( However, good enough, and  I may actually take this to work and put it on my desk for those no good very bad days. I also did a huge overhaul of my craft room and got rid of so many things. I'm almost at the point where I can find everything that I need to do many types of projects and actually reach my sewing machine, so things are feeling a lot more creatively possible around here lately.

Dec 2, 2015

String Quilting up a Storm

It's been ages since I've blogged again, but I do still want to use this space to keep track of some of my projects and to help give me a creative boost when I need one! So I'll try to pop in and at least share some of the projects I've done or have been working on.

Here's a quilt that my mom and I made together. It's a string quilt, which uses scraps of material cut into strips. We tried to keep to a palette of browns and oranges and greens and tans mostly,and used the blue strips in the middle to tie everything together. My mom is a serious quilter, so we had lots of variety to choose from.

This was a fun and easy quilt to do, just a lot of sewing, as it's a sew as you go quilt. Basically, this means that you start with a square of plain fabric and sew all the strips onto the square, trim it and then sew all the bigger blocks together. Then you sandwich the quilt tip, batting and backing together, sew and turn. We did a few hand-stitched x'es to tack the quilt top to the backing and we were done! It was a huge job and SO much ironing and sewing though, but given that we used a flannel sleep inside instead of batting, this quilt is so warm, and just the right size to curl up with on the couch.

Here's a good string quilt tutorial if you're interested in making your own-just looking at the pictures makes me want to make another one!

Jan 27, 2015

Around Here

So, let's face it, my daily posts fizzled already, like many New Year's resolutions. If it makes you  (and me) feel better, I am keeping up with my daily journal entries in my Happiness project journal. Here's a bit of  an update on what I've been up to lately-I could try to play catch up, but I can't really be bothered, if I'm being honest. Some ideas seem like they'd be an inspiring challenge and end up just taking away from the time you have to enjoy your day and just aren't worth it. At any rate, wanting to post more on this space did encourage me to take a few more pictures than I usually would have, so enjoy those at least!

READING all the books lately! I just finished the Rosie Project, the Rosie Effect and Water for Elephants in the last few days. Suffice it to say, I haven't been sleeping much, but it's been worth it! If you've guessed that I was that kid in the playground reading a book, you'd be right.

REMEMBERING  to take my vitamins...I finally thought of downloading an app to track my progress. Check marks for me mean vitamin taking success! #oldladyproblems

CLEANING and organizing all the things still. I'm not quite up to date with all my January Cure tasks, but some parts of the apartment are feeling a bit more tidy and organized. My fridge has organizing bins in it and our storage room now has a shelf! This makes me happier than you'd think it would. I have even been doing the dishes, sometimes more than once in a day!

WANTING to have more time to draw. I got a new notebook and some new Sharpies, and I am having lots of fun doing some doodles. Everything looks nicer in black pen.

WEARING the same old duds. I am out of inspiration for winter fashions or not wearing the same sweater every day for comfy warmth.

WATCHING so much Friends on Netflix that all the friends are starting to visit my dreams. Well, mostly Chandler. Meow!

STARTING some more volunteer jobs. I hope that all of this time I'm spending will be worth it in the form of new opportunities in the future.

CONSIDERING some big decisions, I'm not sure if right now will be the right time, but I think I'm ready.

ATTENDING some super fun driver's training. This will be the year I get my G2 driver's license, and this seems to be the fastest way to do it. At this rate, I can take my test in June if I'm ready.

COOKING lots of yummy food. I made a great tofu, sweet potato, bok choy and zucchini stir fry, yummy refried bean tacos and some delicious spaghetti with goat cheese lately.

FEELING tired after those late nights of reading. Looking forward to cuddling up in bed tonight!

ANGRY at the evil laundry room door for locking early and trapping my comforter in the dryer

WORKING on all the things and probably a bit too much. Somehow I have three or four jobs and a number of volunteer jobs going on at the moment. Story of my life really- I'm an over-committer. My plate is feeling full, but mostly manageable at the moment.

DREAMING of some crafts I want to tackle someday soon.

WANTING to see my family and celebrate us some Christmas! I was planning to make it up to Peterborough in January, but this is clearly not going to happen. February sometime it is.

DRINKING so much tea and coffee lately to keep warm. Caffeine headaches, I am sick of you.

Jan 18, 2015

18 January

 A day of tidying and napping. I had a case of the crankies all day that has only just lifted. Sometimes the only cure for a bad mood is the magical combination of chocolate and tea.

Jan 17, 2015

17 January

A relaxing afternoon of practicing my driving out in the country with a friend, and stopping for lunch at a Mennonite restaurant. Delicious cake was eaten!

Jan 16, 2015

16 January

Friday night traditions  are the best way to end out a week. It was so good to finally relax and unwind.

Jan 15, 2015

15 January

It's funny how something grows to have less power over you the more you talk about it openly with people.