Wednesday, November 7, 2018

I Am Here

Have you heard Pink's song, I Am Here?  I love everything she does, but this song is really meaningful to me and it really fits my mood lately.  Where does everybody go when they go?
Well, I was here all of September and October, but in November I went to SF to see my family.  The trip was a quick decision I made a few weeks ago -- I was tired of saying, "I should go" and just found a date that worked and got some tickets.  Sometimes you just have to listen to your heart.  My husband and son were on the fence about it, but they made time to go with me and I think they're really glad they did.
We spent some time remembering the ones we have loved and lost.  They are in a lovely final resting place.
We drove to the wine country, got lost in its beauty, and had a great meal in Sonoma.

A really wonderful evening on a patio -- it was cold in Colorado, but in the 80's in California.  Happy sigh.
My new favorite wine.
We visited my father's youngest brother and his wife in Stockton.  It was so wonderful to see them and it made me very happy.  Also in the photo: my cousin and my half brother.
That night, my brother treated us to another really great dinner at a local casino.  We even tried our hand at the slots.
Ben is now 21 and able to gamble; we both lost -- but it was fun trying!
On our last day there, we visited with more of our family, who all graciously made time to get together for a visit in our honor.  It was a real reunion!  Above, me with my brothers and cousins (and also my dad's first wife.)
We all reminisced about our families and our grandparents; above, a photo of my grandmother, who I will always miss.
We had so much fun.  And then it was over, and we were back home in Colorado.  I'm sad and missing it all -- but, ever so glad to have been there.
In October, I got to go and see one of my favorite, favorite writers: Anne Lamott!  She was having a signing for her new book one night in Denver, and I got one of the last spots.  It was completely amazing to meet her, and so inspiring!
Now, it's back to holiday preparations; I've been making ornaments...
and listing them in my Etsy shop...
but not selling any...
I don't know what's up with that?  No one is spending money, it seems.  I just keep listing, though.  I have some really fun stuff in my shop, and even more I haven't had a chance to list yet!  Everything in my shop ships free now!

Go see!  And, please check back -- I'm planning to list and list and list in the next few days!  💖

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Creating a wedding invitation keepsake, and hiking unexpectedly

Dennis and I attended a beautiful wedding last weekend for one of my new co-workers.  Everything about the day was lovely and we were so glad to be included!
The wedding colors were dark blue and white, and I was so inspired by the pretty invitation that I decided to create a frame for it for them as a keepsake.
Here's how it turned out.  While the images of brides were scans of originals, almost all of the rest of the details including the beaded flowers, millinery and fabrics, were vintage (of course!)  Here are some of my favorite details/close-ups of the decoupaging:

The back, and a little gift card I made to go with it.  I know that decoupaging with vintage paper isn't everyone's style, but I hoped she'd like it, and she did!

This weekend was quieter; after Dennis was out of town for the whole week (and the whole week before, too), he came home Friday and took me to a local pop up vintage market.  It was small, but we had a lot of fun!
Then yesterday we drove up to Greeley to visit Ben.  We had a really nice time on a lovely day with him and Cora; we hiked (accidentally!) at a State Park, among other things.  It was so wonderful to spend time with them.

I had hoped for Fall color, but it was a little bit too early for that; the pretty photo below is someone else's, from another part of Colorado, but I'm adding it for emphasis.
I hope you had a wonderful weekend, too!

Friday, September 7, 2018

New again

So, here I am at my new job.  I work inside the back area of a library, and it's a really sunny, spacious office.  As you can see, they told me to "make the space my own" so I brought in some of my art and a family photo (behind me.)  I'll probably decorate more later, too.
I think I'm going to be happy there.  I work every morning and get to leave at noon.  At my last job at the call center, I didn't go in to work until mid-afternoon and I really liked that schedule.  The last couple of weeks I find I'm having a hard time adjusting back to early morning wakings.  Especially since just this week, there was snow on Pikes Peak and, after Labor Day, a chill in the air in the mornings which makes me very sad; it also make me want to roll over and hide under the blankets when my alarm goes off.
But --  once I'm at work I do enjoy how quickly the morning goes and then I'm off the rest of the day!  Look at this friendly group of ladies I work with!  The one in the pink to my right is the gal I'm replacing me; she stayed on for a week to train me but then Tuesday was her last day so we took her to lunch.  I'm really going to miss her!  Big shoes to fill.  Everyone at work is so very nice.
I took this photo of pink birds flying between two buildings in downtown Colorado Springs on Labor Day, when Dennis and I went out to lunch and to see a movie.  It reminds me of how there are many forces at work in this city, striving to showcase the arts.  This is never more obvious than at the libraries, where so many community and arts activities are offered!  Just last Friday I attended a two-hour class on songwriting, taught by The Reminders.  It was so inspiring and interesting -- it really got my writing juices flowing.  Since I'm now there at the "makers" library every day, I don't doubt I'll be getting more involved with all of it in the future months.  Happy thought.
Today is an exception: I'm working all afternoon instead of the morning.  It's chilly out again, and I slept in until almost 8 am.  Dennis is right now flying home from Montana, where he's been working since Tuesday.  He's working so much lately.  It will be nice to regroup.  Tomorrow I'm taking my car in to hopefully get rid of that awful noise it's been making, and then we will be celebrating a wedding with some new friends Saturday night and Sunday afternoon.  In between all that, I'm hoping to finish up on four globes I've been working on!  Two are normal sized, and two are tiny. 
Then I've got to get working on Christmas tart tin ornaments and some other ideas I have -- and I have a load of vintage Christmas to list in my shop.  I'm contemplating a weekend vintage market in November -- right now I'm wait-listed for a booth.
When we're in between seasons and there's a lot of change going on in my life, my body wants to slow down, relax, maybe even, if I'm honest with myself, hide.  My flip-flopped new schedule has me too fatigued mid afternoon to do much of anything and I find if I sit down to rest, I take a nap.  Then it's easy to lose momentum and get nothing done the rest of the day.  I can feel myself cycling into depression.  I know I'm not the only one fighting this battle!  I also know I have to nip it in the bud before succumbing to it.  I have long planned to join a new gym this fall, which is convenient with my new job and should be a no-brainer -- but I have not been able to get my butt over there to sign up.  I'm not exercising at home either, even though all my bones and muscles seem healed now after physical therapy.  So: the gym is my goal for September.  What is yours?

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Rockin' Rod and Girls Having Fun

Well, you guessed it: I had the time of my life at the Rod Stewart/Cyndi Lauper concert!  First of all, it was great to spend time with my old friend Judy -- who I've known since 7th grade.  She visited Colorado for the first time and enjoyed our wonderful weather and the relaxing (compared to the bay area) feel.
On the night of the concert we had just found our way to our seats in section 306 when we got the surprise of our lives: I asked another fan to take a photo of Judy and I with the stage in the background.  The next thing I knew this fan, who it turns out was part of the backstage team for Cyndi Lauper, was handing us tickets to the sixth row next to the stage!  She told us, Cyndi liked to gift people with seat upgrades!  We moved down to our new seats in a happy daze!
Cyndi Lauper performed first and she was energetic and inspiring.  I re-lived many 1980's moments listening to her songs, which were always both fun and also touching -- like Time After Time, All Through the Night, and True Colors.  Of course the concert hall was a madhouse when she performed Girls Just Want to Have Fun!
Then, Rod Stewart wasted no time coming on stage, and it was like a dream.  It was so amazing to be so up close and see his face without having to look at the giant video screen!  I was swooning the entire time and you could not wipe the smile off of my face.
There were moments during the show when I looked skyward and greeted Margaret, who I know was watching from somewhere far away, like Cloud 9.  He really did put on a first class, high quality performance.
I even felt like Sir Rod and I had a little moment together at the end of the concert, where he looked at me with the recognition of how important he's been to me for the last 40 years. He said goodbye with his eyes and told me that it had been quite a ride.  Or, I could have been imagining it.
He did for sure bow elegantly and, I felt so strongly, bid a fond farewell.
Blogger's made many improvements so posting these videos should work; if you can't see them, please let me know and I can email them to followers of the blog.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Wait, what month is it?

Have you seen this meme on Facebook or elsewhere on the web?
It makes me laugh and at the same time it strikes fear in my heart!  Because I had such grand plans for Christmas crafting this year.  I intended to start in July.  Well, it's mid August and I finally did start preparing last week by sorting through my Christmas thrift store finds from this year.
After sorting, I started grouping.  These are all the special shaped tart tins, molds and cookie cutters that I bought specifically for crafting this year; I grabbed them whenever I found them cheap at thrift shops.
But when I went through the stash I already had, I discovered a great supply (above) that probably would have taken me through this year's crafting!  But no matter, because I have an idea to sell kits for making those wonderful little tart tin/mold ornaments this year -- so, extra is good.  I am so excited about this project and have spent time yesterday and today gathering my favorite images to use for backgrounds, etc.  I have a pile of paper to scan and duplicate for some designs and also for ephemera packs I hope to make.
My first step in all this sorting consisted of bringing a bunch of containers up from the basement and washing away the all the dust and glitter from storage, using the garden hose.  This morning I filled many of these up! The actual crafting, though, will have to wait until after my company is gone next week!
Meanwhile, I'm helping to do another monthly Vintage Auction on our public page, Vintage Supplies Marketplace.  I have listed lots of buttons if you are interested in getting some!  Vintage Supply Marketplace on Facebook.  The sale runs through Sunday, August 19 at 9 pm EST.  The necklace shown above is buy-it-now, but everything else that I'm selling is auction style.
It has been an unusually busy month for me for visitors.  First, I went to pick up my Aunt Delores so I could bring her to her sister-in-law's funeral.  It was a sad occasion but I enjoyed seeing many members of my extended family (most of whom I have never met before!)  Delores spent the weekend with us and it was a treat.
The following week my brother Joe came to Colorado from his home in California.  He was here for just a few days and had a lot to accomplish, but we were able to assemble all of the local family together to see him!  Here he is, above, with my son Ben and his girlfriend, Cora, who traveled from Greeley for dinner with Joe.
And here are all the kids -- including Joe's twins Alex and Spencer, whose birthday we were celebrating!  It was a super fun night.
In a few days from now, one of my oldest friends, Judy, will be coming to Colorado -- her first trip here!  I saw Judy last when I went to Margaret's funeral and stayed with her in SF for a couple of days, two years ago.  That's where the photo above was taken, with both of us trying to smile at the cemetery.  I'm very much looking forward to seeing Judy again, under happier circumstances!
We have lots of fun and relaxing planned; the biggest event though is the Rod Stewart concert we're attending on Wednesday night in Denver!  It will be my 4th time seeing him -- he's an absolute favorite and means a lot to me.  At my age, when I hear one of his old tunes a feeling washes over me like no other; it is the soundtrack of my coming-of-age years.  The photo above was taken in San Francisco when I went to see him with Margaret -- our first concert, in 1979.
Here's what we can expect to see Wednesday -- he's now 73 years old!  But I must be 14 again, because just thinking about being in the same room with him again makes me want to squeal like a teeny bopper!  And, oh, I expect to miss Margaret so much that night.  Her death is still an open wound; I am just telling myself to live in the moment and feel joy, while imagining her watching from heaven!  But I would not be surprised if I burst into tears anyway when I hear the opening strains of Maggie May.
Do you have a favorite Rod Stewart song?