Monday, June 30, 2008

Michele Beschen - DIY Network

Ok! All of your creative types, crack open your piggie bank, use some of that rainy day money, sell your worldly possessions on ebay, beg, borrow, ( no stealing). Find a way to get to the ZNE Convenzione!
Michele Beschen, Host of the HGTV and DIY Network television show - B Original! - will be attending both 2008 and 2009. In 2008 she'll serve as the ZNE Show Hostess on Friday night. In 2009, she'll be the keynote speaker on Friday night!
That's just the beginning of the excitement at the ZNE Convenzione! So be sure to check out the ZNE site . I love this quote from Michele, it sums up the philosphy of so much about why I love ZNE and ZNE events.
“It's our job to help people find that creative place within themselves. We all have it, and it can lead to some amazing discoveries, you just can't be afraid to create something – anything – that in the end, is going to be as individual as you are.” - Michele Beschen
I am so excited to able to attend ZNE Convenzione and am looking forward to meeting many little time! And then to get the opportunity to meet her again in 2009! I'm speechless ( I know, you really don't believe the speechless part!)!
Learn more about Michele Beschen on her blog, Courage To Create. Don't miss her website here... or this link to her show
So...if you don't hear from me at the end of August...this is what I'll be up too!!! Don't you want to come, too!

Gotta Get Busy!

Whewww.....I have all of those "late"/"hurry" quotes running through my head.

I'm late, I'm late for a very important date.
A stitch in time saves nice
The hurry-er I go the behind-er I get.
Better late than never. But never late is better.
Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.

Maybe it's not so much hurry or late, as busy and overwhelmed? Well, busy. I'm retired, how can I be overwhelmed.

Last week was VBS at our church check out our blog for the exciting details. It was exciting. We had 64 neighborhood children. Just the right number for our staff of volunteers. As with most things worth doing, it requires effort. It was worth the effort, but I am tired! We usually set up during the week before, then there is prep each day and clean up at the end. Whew....where did the time go.

Ok, then I have book club tomorrow night. I am suppose to lead the discussion on David McCullough's book 1776. I have discussion questions ready, but I haven't finished the book....duh!!!!! And I'm not in the mood. I skip over the battle stuff and read the social history parts. Very bad.

THEN.....I haven't been over at the BRO for more than a week. I'm the President of this non-profit groups Board of Directors. I maintain a website, blog, hunt down grants, write letters, shop for toys and baby items, etc. Ack! So I was there today. They get there at the crack of dawn. Well, they get up at 6 am and get there about 8 am or 8:30 am. I'm still thinking about getting out of bed then. After which I walk the dogs. So I arrive about 11am. I am such a slouch.

Bible Study is's the last session til September. Of course, I haven't read that lesson yet, either. Sigh.....

I'm working on my Zaftig Chunky Book pages for the ZNE Convenzione SWap. Chunky pages are 4 by 4 inches, I need to make 30. I'm trying to use up supplies I have, clip art, designer paper, charms, tags, etc.......Here are my first two....I may still add the word ART to the bottom of these pages somewhere, if I can find letters the right size.

So while lots is happening, I'm glad. I'm very blessed to be involved in all that I am involved in. And that I have the abilities to do it. This is just a bit maudlin....thanks for being patient. I''ve got this off my chest, now maybe I can get busy!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

VBS - 50th Anniversary

Yep! It's the 50Th Anniversary of my first time at VBS. I was thinking about that today. I have been working at my church's VBS the last 15 years or so. In my previous life ( first marriage) I worked a few years, and while I was in high school. I, of course attended from the time I was about 5 or so til I was too old. Probably a Sophomore in high school.
It was always fun to hang out with church friends. They usually went to a different school, so you only saw them on Sunday and at camp or VBS.

Anyway, I am going to the same church I grew up in. My grandparents, started going there in the late 1930s when they moved to St. Louis from the Kansas City, Kansas area. My mom was from Texas, and met my dad when she was staying with her aunt.....but that is story for another day.

The past several years I have been the craft lady. I volunteered to do the Bible Adventure story this year, to give one of our newbie volunteers a stab at the crafts. I think Laura is having a good time. I was a bit reluctant about the Bible Stories. I am a Christian, ( a Liberal Evangelical as some of us like to call as not to be confused with the right wing..... and all of their baggage....I have enough baggage of my own.)

Anyway, I am a Christian, but I am not a Biblical Scholar. I confess I fall into the very same trap as the Conservatives.....we both suffer from "Selective, Literal, Biblical Interpretation. I pick and choose the scriptures I want to pay attention to.Dangerous for everyone involved. you really want me to tell your kid Bible Stories. One of my favorite scriptures is from Micah...."What does the Lord require of justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with God." And I love the story about Judith, who seduces the enemy, Holofernes, hacks off his head and saves her people. We never get to tell that story in VBS. Not to mention the fact I am a Presbyterian (PCUSA) , a reformed protestant, Christian group....and Judith is not in "our" Bible.....bummer.

Sometimes, I just have very basic rules about faith. "God loves you, love your neighbor, no exceptions!" It seems simplier that way.

So I need a lot of direction. But it's working out. Yesterday, we all had leprosy, but were cured by Jesus, and we learned to be thankful. Today, Jesus made the blind man see, with a little mud and spit....we reenacted the event....using blindfolds, and oatmeal....much tidier, and we learned to be helpful to others. Tomorrow we walk on water. The directions make is seem sooooo easy. Thursday is the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus and Friday is Pentecost. WOW! Heavy stuff! So keep me in your prayers.

check out our VBS here

Back to the start of this post.....I was thinking about it being the 50th anniversary of my first time at Bible School. My parents even taught at Bible School thru the years. In the photo you will see me, with the sunflower, along with my brother and sister-in-law, and my great niece ( their grand daughter), she is busy being shy. But this is Payton's first time at VBS. Her mom went to VBS here too, once or twice, and so did her grandpa, my brother, Jim. I'm not sure if my sister-in-law(Pat) ever attended VBS here or not, but she did join the church when she was in high school. Well, I talked Jim and Pat into helping out this year. Everyone seems to be having a great time, and learning that God loves them, and that they should love their neighbor, no exceptions. I'll wait and tell them the story about Judith and Holofernes on another day.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Lavender Wand

A couple of years ago, I discovered the Lavender Farm located in Suburban St. Louis. Winding Brook Estates. It's a lovely place, with a Lavender Gift shop on the farm, and in the little suburban towne of Eureka, they have a store where you can take classes. I learned to make a lavender wreath there earlier this year. Anyway.....a couple of years ago I went with a couple of friends to pick was $12 a bundle. You got pretty much for your $12. But decided I wanted my own. So in spring 2007 I planted 3 plants. I didn't get very many blooms. But this year they are blooming like crazy. Today I decided to try my hand at making a lavender wand. I found these instructions on line. Pretty easy to follow....I didn't play complete attention, which is the story of my life. I wove/weaved over one lavender stem, the instructions said two.
So pick yourself some lavender, an even number. Try to make the stems 2 times as long as the blooms. Tie a piece of ribbon just below the blooms. Turn the stems with the flowers down, then gently bend each stem down, making a cage around the blooms. I gently tied it at the bottom to keep them together, sort of arrange them a little so they are evenly spaced, I didn't do that...but will on my next wand. Then pretend you are doing embroidery, or cross stitch, you know...don't try a knot. and then just you get closer to the bottom you might loosen the tie...then when you feel it is finished, wrap some ribbon and tie a bow. I used a tapestry needle, easy to thread the ribbon thru, and Joann Fabrics and Crafts had craft ribbon on sale today , 4 rolls for $1.00. I'll have to get some photos of the lavender, it grows next to the garage, kinda bushy, and I probably didn't prepare the soil properly. The soil in this area has a lot of clay, and I think the plants need drainage, but with all the rain we have had, they look pretty robust. They get full sun all afternoon. And hey, they survived a St. Louis winter. Now it just needs to sit and dry!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Cornstarch Walk on Water

I've lost my mind! I'm teaching Vacation Bible School next week, and this is one of our activities. Should be interesting. We'll see what happens, check back for more details!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Garden Tour For A Cure 2

It was a very nice day at the Missouri Botanical Garden in St. Louis. A bit warm and over cast, but the Niki Saint Phalle sculptures didn't seem to mind the heat!
garden21 This guy was big enough to walk inside of! and the inside was mosaic with mirrors....very fun!

garden20 A totem pole, and you could sit on the bottom....a great resting spot in the garden.garden6
The kids were allowed to crawl in and out of this one!

garden19A few roses were still budding, with the heat and rain a lot of them where in full bloom.












Dale Chihuly Glass.

I had to repost these photos, photobucket was acting odd, and not loading the slide show. These are from flickr...thanks for coming back and seeing my photos....check out the links below..

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Collage Lost & Found - Week 4

Our last week working in Collage Lost & Found with the ZNE BOOK CLUB. I love all the ideas and techniques in this book by "Josie" Cirincione. Easy to follow instructions and great photos that show you "how" it's done. Our last project was to make a domino or game piece pendant, and tell a story.

The pendant with the girl and dog is one of my favorite clip art images...I love dogs...and the words "good friends" come from a Bobbsey Twins book my mother received as a Christmas gift from her parents in 1931. It is really beat up, other people would have put it in the trash by now, but it is perfect for making collage pieces that need words and this edition has great words about family, Christmas, travel, animals...very fun stuff.

Both pendants make me think of last weekend at the Castle in the Meadow event, in Detroit, Michigan. Good friends love you no matter what, and I find the zne art group loves you and your work, matter where you are on the art spectrum.

The castle is one of the castle images we received from Luna Girl, the words are also from my Bobbsey Twins book, a chapter title. I was searching for words and came across "Safe from the storm" and thought how the castle had kept us safe from the storm that hit the area at the end of our day. The staff and police asked us to stay til the tornado warning passed. I was amazed at the damage along the route I traveled back to my hotel in Novi/Livonia. If we had left the Castle at the designated time, we would have been in the middle of the these pendants are dedicated to the wonderful participants at the Castle in the Meadow party! they still need beads and wire....and the diamond glaze.....

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Garden Tour For A Cure

Welcome to my "Tour For A Cure" slide show. You are about to tour the Missouri Botanical Garden, as it was on June 5, 2008. I went there that day to celebrate the life of my father, who passed away June 5, 2006.Both my father and mother enjoyed trips to the Botanical Garden, known by St. Louisians as "Shaw's Garden". Currently, at the Garden, there is a special exhibit of the sculpture art of Niki de Saint Phalle. You will also see art glass by Dale Chihuly

Photobucket may be experiencing problems....plese check back here if my photos aren't showing.....sorry

Click here to see more Garden Tours for the Cure

The Breast Cancer Site

You can donate to the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure through my friend, Deb Wiethop's Team at Wellpoint.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Castle in the Meadow

What a wonderful day! It started with breakfast with Chel in the beautiful atrium at the Embassy Suites, I had the wonderful opportunity to meet the rest of the Queen of ZNE's family! Then I drove the royal rental coach ,with the Queen, to the Castle. ( Ok, a little deep.) What a joy to meet Chel, and spend a little time chatting about politics, religion, Ann Lamott and shoes. We even stopped at the Majier store and bought those infamous "jump rings". We stayed focused and bypassed the other crafts, it was a struggle.

We arrived "un petite retarde".....uh...we were almost late. God was definitely working a little wrong turns somehow ended up being the right way....we did arrive, alive! It must have been the spiritual conversation about Ann Lamott and the Presbyterian Church (USA) ( Where everyone is welcome, no exceptions.)

We arrived to find, Bernice, who is not 98, ( even though her "My space page" says she is) , Cathy from Georgia and Sarah. We stuffed the gift bags and oooohed and ahhhhed over all the pretties.

Then the whole crowd started to arrive, name tags helped. I couldn't keep track or get enough pictures. Hugs for everyone! Then on for the tour.

What a house! Meadow Brook Hall built by the Dodge family from 1926-1929. It has 110 rooms and 88,000 square feet of space. Imagine all the mixed media supplies and ephemera you can stuff into that space! It was lovely, from the silk wall coverings to the linen fold wood carvings on the panels in the library. There was even a Tiffany lamp, actually made by Tiffany. We may have stressed out the docent a bit with our get aquainted chit chat. But she made a lovely presentation.

Appetizers, wine spritzers, beer, soft drinks and fruit were consumed in between Chel's efforts to give instructions to a bunch of mixed media artists. Would it be easier to herd cats?

We finally got started, my project has vintage music( from PinkyLouLou) layered on to a neutral wall paper, the box is wrapped with crepe paper. Vintage images of queens and castles are from Luna Girl. Fluer-de-lis and crown charms are from my home town's own Red Lead Paperworks. More later about the other goodies we received.

Sadly, the happy day had to come to an end, but not before a tornado warning which kept us in the basement past our departure time. The castle staff and area police, wisely asked us to stay until the warning expired. Driving back to the hotel I was amazed at the number of trees and power lines that were down. I hope everyone is ok.

Then on to a lovely dinner at TGIFRIDays, where delightful Chris our server, helped me decipher the map, (since the Queen was picked up by the King for more family outing adventures. I had to find my way back....on my own....not nearly as much fun. ) A grand time was had by Bernice, Cathy, Hope, Jill and me....followed by a group hug in the parking lot, and wishes of traveling mercies and promises of future contact on the ZNE boards and attendance at art retreats throughout the midwest.

It was a royally delightful day!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Remembering Dad

Remembering Dad! Here is my dad...about age 4 in 1924. Probably Kansas City, Kansas. June 5 is the second anniversary of my father's death. I'm going to celebrate and remember his life by going to the Botanical Garden and do a photo shoot for my "garden tour" for "Tour for a Cure" coming June 15. ( See side bar photo), And, of course, feed the birds! Everyone, call you dad and say "Hi! I love you and thanks for being my dad!"

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Stampers Sampler!!!!

Here it is! My card is at the top of page 13! It is an honor to be included!