Friday, February 27, 2009

Bag Labels

I'm so proud of myself! I designed and printed my own labels for my bags and such. I wanted some small tag style labels to add the professional look, but I didn't want to pay for them when I knew I could make them.

I designed them using Publisher and a template for labels that are 1/2"x1 1/2". The font had to be about 7, but they are completely readable (maybe with a magnifying glass for some of us over 40!). I also used a design that Publisher has included and modified it to suit me.

I printed them on printable fabric from Electric Quilt Company. The fabric is a good tight weave and is adhered to a plastic backing and feeds through the printer just great. Now, I am cutting off rows of labels as I need them. I am not going to worry about the raw edges, because if I cut them straight, they stay pretty much on grain and will not fray much.

I thought I would sew them onto the bags, but really hate that kind of hand sewing, so I remembered I had some narrow Steam a Seam fusible on a roll (which I could not find on their website, so they may have discontinued that product, but other companies make fusible strips sold on a roll). After removing the printable fabric backing, I used the strips to make my little labels fusible!

I feel so accomplished today! I applied about a dozen labels to the bags I have made lately in the short hour I was able to be in my sewing room this afternoon. Every little bit helps!

Monday, February 16, 2009

God Help Me...

I wrote a letter today (amazing!) to my close friend's daughter, who is having some difficulties lately, and I thought I would share it (I am not using her real name). Since it was the Holy Spirit that helped write (maybe I should say wrote) it, I think it turned out pretty good. It all started because I wanted to give her something to let her know I was thinking of her. I chose a small handbag I had just finished, made from denim embroidered with handbags (of all things!). It also had a rhinestone zipper closure, just the cutest touch with the denim! I also enclosed a stone, you will see in the letter why I did that.

Dear Susie, I wrote this in a hurry, while chasing little boys, so I hope it makes sense. While we don’t talk often or much, I have always cared about you since you were in my four-year old class, all those years ago!

I was thinking what I could put in this bag to cheer you up, so I looked for some scripture that had the word bag in it. When I came across David and Goliath, I thought about how you have been facing giants lately.

1 Samuel 17:48-49 As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him. Reaching into his bag and taking out a stone, he slung it and struck the Philistine on the forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell facedown on the ground.

Satan tries to come as a giant to scare the wits out of us. Sometimes, he whispers giant lies to us. Sometimes he uses other people to create giant situations that are beyond our control. Whatever he does, he does to try and make us afraid or angry and unable to function as God intends.

When we are scared or angry, we do foolish things, make bad choices and sometimes blame God for not protecting us. I know that I have done that, even very recently. But fear and anger can drive us to God if we let it.

To be honest, I have been angry with God for not doing things in my life to suit my idea of what should be happening. I wanted Him to change Travis and Sarah and He didn’t. I wanted Him to give us custody of the grandkids and He did. So now, I take care of the kids and I find myself angry with God because I had to leave a job I loved and I feel out of control. I got some of what I wanted and now I find it all frustrating!

My point is that we all struggle with our emotions and Satan does his devil best to widen the gap between us and God as we struggle.

Psalm 145:8 The LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love.

God is slow to anger, even when we are angry with Him. He is faithful even when we are unfaithful. He loves us unconditionally and just asks us to love Him.

Micah 6:8 He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? T o act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.

That’s it, Susie…walk humbly with God and He will lift you up!

Love, Becky


Friday, February 13, 2009

Well, I see I haven't posted anything for a while. It's because we've been sick, of course! Last week, Middle D brought home something akin to the flu. He was a sick puppy for about five days, then we had to endure another five of attitude when he got well. Ugh. Then Little D came down with it and one night ran a 104.8 fever. We went to the Dr. the next day and came home with more antibiotics for ear and lung infection. Again. Now it's time for Grammy and Grandpa to get it. I tried to fight it off with herbs and homeopathic remedies, but nothing worked completely. I will say I haven't gotten the high fever, but there's always secondary infections around the corner!! Enough negativity...

Last week, I was able to get a quilt top sewn together using my Wordle fabric that I had printed by Spoonflower a few months ago. It is the berry colored fabric with the words from Isaiah 40 printed on it. I think it turned out great! The pattern, called Garden Melody, is one my mom and I designed last winter for her poppy fabric printed by Andover Fabrics. Stop by her shop or Andover to see the fabulous fabric. They don't have it up yet, but her latest line is of Tulips and we spent the last couple of weeks designing new quilts for that fabric. I do the beginning rough work in EQ6 and then she begins in fabric and makes design decisions as she goes. She called me frequently to consult and ask questions. It seems to work pretty well for a long distance relationship! BTW, she's in Oregon and I'm in Tennessee, nearly 3000 miles apart!

I wanted to make something else with the Wordle fabric, so I made this cute bag. It's not very big, but I like it!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Wordle

I love Wordle: You put in words and it scrambles them into a really cool graphic...They call them "word clouds." Every time a word is repeated in the original text, it is a little larger in the word cloud where the words are only listed once. You can mix them up, changing the color, font and shape of the cloud. It is so cool!

This one is Psalm 40. Click on this image to see it larger:

Wordle: Untitled

Here's another from the words to "Did You Feel the Mountains Tremble?":

Wordle: Did You Feel the Mountains Tremble?
I'm tired of winter. We have had very cold weather for our region for a couple of weeks now and this week we had several days of snow. Today the high temp will be about 48-50, depending on who you listen to. Yay!

Now anyone who has a little one understands how difficult it is to do anything but care for and play with them. Little D is being a pill today...into everything, not necessarily being naughty, but exploring things he is not supposed to. Right now, he has climbed up into his empty high chair and is yelling at me. I'ts not that he's hungry, he just got down from there a little while ago. Five minutes ago, Middle D kicked him off the couch where he slammed into the coffee table. I have yet to figure out what made the huge noise was when he fell. Can't find a bruise yet, it's too early. Can't wait for nap time!

My project today will be to finish the quilt top that I started on Tuesday. I decided to make up the pattern Garden Melody that Mom and I designed last year for her poppy fabric. It's really turned out well, purple, green, gold, berry...a sorts of colors. The impetus was that I had a fabric printed by Spoonflower that has words from scripture on it, the background is berry and the words are black. So I found a print that had the right color in it and then chose coordinating fabrics. It is a very striking combination. I will post a pic as soon as I can, maybe later this afternoon!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Broccoli Cheese Soup

This may seem like a silly post, but mothers will relate to this small victory: I am happy that Little D actually ate some broccoli cheese soup just now. Granted it was only about a tablespoon, but it had real broccoli in it, something that he has shunned so far. He wasn't sure about the texture, because I could see him wanting to spit it out, but he liked the cheese flavor and so he ate it!

I have to admit that it is really a good batch of soup, using leftover cheese sauce and broccoli from dinner the other night. I thinned down the sauce with chicken stock and milk, added a few dried onion flakes, garlic powder and then chopped the broccoli really fine. I heated it for a few minutes then served with goldfish (to swim in the soup) and whole wheat toast. The boys ate it up!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Latest Bag




I designed a really cute bag recently. It's tapestry in a funky circular pattern. I used a shape I have seen a lot recently and attached straps with D rings and used a magnetic snap, making it look quite professional. The lining is cotton, with pockets on both sides. It is approximately 12"x6"x2". Great for a daily handbag. You can view at my Etsy shop.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Sunday's Sermon

Pastor preached a great sermon this morning on how to be great according to Christ. In Mark 10, the disciples James and John come to Christ and ask to sit on Christ's right and left in his kingdom.

From birth, our desire is to be great, to be noticed or to be first. I see this in our boys. They always want to be served first, have the most of something or to get the last word. If I am focused on one, the others will vie for my attention.

Unfortunately, I see those same qualities in myself. I want to be first, best and greatest, too. I want the last word. I want to do what I want to do, when I want to do it, not when someone else says so. I hate it when someone interrupts what I am doing. Christ would have it otherwise. Dying to myself, denying my desire to be great, becoming a slave to others is how Christ expects me to live.

I've been struggling with my feelings. I expected to be doing other things at this time in my life. I had my children when I was very young, raised them and expected them to lead their own lives so I could do things I had never been able to do. But, one son cannot handle his life, so we are raising his three children instead.

This is not where I thought we would be. And yet, it must be where God wants us to be, because only by his will do we have custody of the boys. Things sailed through court in a way that no one expected. That had to have been God.

A friend once told me that most anger stems from blocked goals. Meaning that some people who don't get what and where they want, become angry. Between blocked goals and hormones, I seem to get pretty angry. However, I cannot take that out on the little boys. They are the innocents in this. When we see them do things that come from the lack of parenting in their lives, we get angry. When they do things that copy the things that they saw in their family, we get angry. When they just act like little boys, we get angry. We want them to be great. It's a real struggle.

So, Pastor hit it on the head when he said we must die to ourselves and serve others. Christ died serving us and the least we can do is to do the same. Does that mean I will be a perfect servant now? No, but it means that I will try to do better, listening to Him and letting Christ live through me, because I can't do it alone.

Mark 10:43-45: "...Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."