j-flamingo reflections

Inspired by the grace and beauty of the flamingo, my life reflected by my love of reading, writing and creating.

The Quilts of Grandma Rae

It's hard to believe that it has been about 10-11 years since I finished this quilt with my sweet Grandma Rae. She had a dream to make a quilt for each of her grandchildren. Since it is so time consuming and her grandchildren kept growing and coming so fast, I'm not sure how many she was actually able to make.
I feel lucky and happy that she invited me over at a time when I lived close enough to walk over and help her finish my quilt. She let me choose my colors, fabric and pattern. I chose the star quilt pattern because I had an orange star quilt as a young girl growing up that I just loved so much that it tattered away to pieces eventually. I missed it and its comfort so much.
I really needed this experience in my life back then. She helped me in many ways and through each step in the quilting process. Some parts are more fun than others in quilting. It was a challenge and a lot of work. What I enjoyed most was the warm relationship that I gained with my Grandma Rae and the insight I saw into my own mother's past also. I will always treasure this moment and think of my loving Grandma fondly.
One part that I will always remember was my first little girl, Hopie, was playing around us as we were working on this quilt. It's another reason why it means so much to me. I was a new and very nervous mother. I wasn't used to the unexpected things that little ones do at Hopie's young, around 12-18 months, age.
Once, little Hopie, tried to stand up using a TV tray and since it wasn't very stable at all, it collapsed on her and she hurt her head. Immediately, my Grandma helped Hopie and me, then we ended up in the ER for her to have stitches. It was so scary then but with quick action Hopie recovered nicely and she is fine, of course, at 12 yrs. old now.
Another incident, was when Hopie tried to drink some of my Grandmother's fabric dye. We hastily called Poison Control and followed their directions to help Hopie. It all worked out without another trip to the ER, but Hopie had a nice dark brown ring around her lips and a brown tongue for a few days. I remember that she would still smile so cute and with that brown circle around her mouth, if you can just picture that, well then, I couldn't help but smile back.
These are what I recall of the cherished memories I have of making a quilt with my Grandma Rae. I'm grateful to her love, gratitude, knowledge, outlook on life, quilting experience and her inspiration. She was literally a life-saver to me through all of this!

Horse Bookmark

Today, I came across a blog about stamping from Dan in U.K. He had done a tutorial about how to use distress inks that are alcohol based. I had bought a Tim Holtz ink pad that was like this and hadn't tried it yet. So, when I saw this tutorial, I was very inspired. I tried it out and I made this horse bookmark. This is only my first attempt, so I'm sure I'll get better at it as I practice. I'd also like some more of those inks and crazy stamps like the one he used but for now I'll just enjoy the ones I have.

As for my supplies I used, they are:
light brown card stock - unknown
tea dye Distress Ink - Tim Holtz
Dark Moss fluid chalk ink - ColorBox
Gold Violet Two-Tone ink - Pearl Ex
White Craft Stamp pad - Stampin' Up
Mare and colt horse stamp - Stampabilites
Bluebonnet stamp - Hero Arts
Garden Collage stamp - Stampin' Up
Watercolor pencils and blender pens - Stampin' Up
Oh, and a spritz of water

Overall, I loved this technique and I will try it again. I'd recommend watching Dan's tutorial before trying it yourself. He has some great tips. One that I was excited about was one that I have used and that is using post-it notes for masking, it works so well!
I had fun and I can't wait to try it again. I'll be sure to post the results.

Now playing: Roxette - Listen To Your Heart
via FoxyTunes

J.S. Bach on a Sunday Morning

I love classical music on Sunday mornings and I'd like to tell you about different music I'll listen to each Sunday. I'm not worried if you care or not. I'd just like to express my feelings about it.
Bach's music helps me retreat into a more meditative state. I love his use of strong chords and how they reach into the depths of my soul. I'm not usually one to like Opera but I love the far-reaching mysterious voices that come when people are singing his music. It's very dream-like and beautiful to me.

Here's a couple of quotes that might shed some more light on meditation:

“We could say that meditation doesn't have a reason or doesn't have a purpose. In this respect it's unlike almost all other things we do except perhaps making music and dancing. When we make music we don't do it in order to reach a certain point, such as the end of the composition. If that were the purpose of music then obviously the fastest players would be the best. Also, when we are dancing we are not aiming to arrive at a particular place on the floor as in a journey. When we dance, the journey itself is the point, as when we play music the playing itself is the point. And exactly the same thing is true in meditation. Meditation is the discovery that the point of life is always arrived at in the immediate moment.”
~Chad Alan Watts

“Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless - like water. Now you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup, you put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, you put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.”
~Bruce Lee

Meditate - be music, be water.

Now playing: Johann Sebastian Bach - Aria aus den Goldberg-Variationen (Glenn Gould)
via FoxyTunes

cards I made just to post here

I can't resist blogging and I couldn't think of what I wanted to post next so I made some cards just for the occasion. I'm amazed at how great I think these turned out. I really had my creative juices flowing for sure today.
I'm not sure what brands the cardstock is, some could be Stampin' Up, but the stamps are for sure Stampin' Up. Believe it or not, I only used one tiny piece of patterned paper ~ the rest of the paper is cardstock and inks that I created. My inks are a combination of Stampin' Up, VersaColor, ColorBox fluid chalk inks.
If you drop by, feel free to comment and let me know what your thoughts are on these cards. Perhaps, these might work for the card class I'll be teaching in October better.

Now playing: Edvard Grieg - Notturno
via FoxyTunes

Honeybees and Stings Part 2

This is completely ironic since I just wrote about my memories as a child with honeybees recently, yesterday(Sept. 4th), I was stung by a bee! So, I now realize that I forgot how much it really hurts! Ouch!
I called my dad, since he's a beekeeper, to ask him about it since I'm limping around and it's swelling so much. I had told him how the bee's stinger was stuck in my knee where it stung me and he asked if I had pinched it out or scratched it. Well, I had pinched it out and apparently that releases more venom into the area so that's why it has swollen even more. If the stinger gets stuck in you then you are supposed to scratch it out instead. So, there's something to remember - scratch the stinger out! I know I'll be fine and I feel bad that the bee most likely died since it lost its stinger but I want to scream also. Hopefully, in a few days, it will stop swelling and heal. Then I'll forget about the hurt of the sting once again and go back to liking honey.
I was with Hope when I was stung by the honeybee because it happened at the dentist office parking lot. I started to reminisce and this experience took me back in time to 7th grade when I was stung by a yellow jacket about six times at the school bus stop. It had crawled up my pant leg and became trapped and just kept stinging away. It was in the same knee, my right one, and I remember it swelling pretty bad too. I had to actually pinch the yellow jacket in my pant leg until it died and stopped stinging me. I was afraid to let go of it on the bus full of jr. high school students. I didn't want to scream out or draw any attention to myself about the situation or risk the very real possibility of being teased. So, I held the yellow jacket firmly in my pant leg until I got home and let go. I saw that it was huge and then I screamed. My mom was scared and came to help me. I can still feel the cold ice packet that she put on it. I was relieved for a bit. She still remembers that experience also. I've lived through being stung a few times now, I can do it again. Wish me luck!
Btw, Hope did great at getting her filling at the dentist. She was a darling patient and didn't have the laughing gas either by her own insistence, they told me. Hope, you always impress me!

just some cards I've made

First of all, I'm new to posting my cards or papercraft items so bear with me. I wanted to post some cards that I've been working on this weekend. I haven't done anything with papercrafting for quite some time-about 18 months or more. So, when I was asked to teach a cardmaking class, I was surprised they still wanted me to. Also, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to get back into it. Anyway, this is what I've come up with. I don't really think the pictures do them justice. I did my best in taking them though.
The thanks card is a design from my sister-in-law, Amy, sent me that she created. I took her idea and this is my version of her card. On the flamingo b-day card that is a Stampin' Up stamp and the paper is Elsie. The hope stamps are Close to my heart - Spunky Alphabet and I used a flower punch on the bottom. A fun technique that I came up with. Too bad, you can't see the inking and pattern paper because I thought it looks really cool. The red card is actually a deep burnt orange red color and the accents are orange and black. I thought these colors were perfect for fall. Anyone know the new fall colors and trends this year, though? The quote on this card reads: To love and be loved is to feel the sun from both sides. I love that quote so it's on my sidebar!
I'd love to hear your feedback, if you'd care to comment, so I can be sure to have some great card kits made up for the class which is coming up on Oct. 18th. Thanks for looking.

About this blog

Welcome Readers~to my blog! A tiny extension of myself and my life. Here, I'll share this journey through my top passions in my life - reading, writing, and creating. You can expect to read poetry, view my papercrafts and read design related posts. Every once in a while, I hope you'll grasp an honest feel of my heart. If you haven't noticed, I love flamingos! I think they are beautiful birds. *Thanks for your attention.*
She is pure Alice in Wonderland, and her appearance and demeanor are a nicely judged mix of the Red Queen and a flamingo.
~Truman Capote

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    I love living my life through reading books, creating beautiful things to make people happy, and sharing snipits of the world as I see it through writing, blogging or designing.