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Monday, December 31, 2012

NEW YEAR'S wishes.....

With a NEW YEAR ahead of us I find it so exciting ~ as if opening a very precious GIFT!!
With a fresh outlook on the days ahead I feel rejuvenated and inspired. Winter's days are now gaining in daylight once again which certainly delights me!

With having had two surgeries during the second week in December I am READY for renewed health and energy in the days ahead.  I feel so blessed to have had good medical care, and friends and family that have looked after me, generously giving of themselves during this busy time of year.  

(Reprinted from

May God's richest blessings be yours as you celebrate the beginning of this new year!

2 Corinthians 5:17 comes to mind..."Therefore, if anyone is in Christ he is a new creation, the old has gone, the new has come!"

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit."      Romans 15:13

Friday, December 21, 2012

Christmas Gift Wrapping and "This art that makes me happy: Ready for Creative Jump Start 2013"

After not feeling well for awhile, and then having two surgeries in two days last week, I am looking forward to returning to my blog with gusto in the new year ahead!  It will feel so good to be creative once again!

Working on handmade Christmas gifts is lifting my spirits immensely.  It helps to keep me settled in one spot using my hands, mind and heart to feel like I am accomplishing something worthwhile!  
Here are a few photos of what I am accomplishing:

What an INSPIRING creative resource for the NEW YEAR!  

Click on the following link:

 Oh!... I'm so excited to be included in this exciting adventure coming in the new year!!!
Sure hope you will join me and then share throughout the new year as to your inspired projects!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Give Thanks To Our Lord and Each Other...

 What FABULOUS weather we are enjoying here in Southern Minnesota!  It is in the 70s with plenty of sunshine and a gentle breeze that teases my hair and eagerly blows in through our open windows!  JUST FANTASTIC!!!!  Feels so good to air out the house again before winter winds blow cold.

Right now it is hard to imagine that I will be adding Christmas decorations to our home in just a few days!  Instead of frantically shopping this Friday I will enjoy a peaceful day at home creating a cozy winter home scene indoors to share with family and friends.  That sounds so wonderful to me!

           (Catherine Klein)

In all things,
                                                I Thessalonians 5:18

With joyful prayers and loving Thanksgiving wishes to all as you share time with family and friends now and throughout the closing of this year.......~Sandie  

Monday, November 12, 2012

Handmade Pottery Yarn Bowl

My current project is keeping my hands busy with knitting.  As a long-time "novice" I am trying to learn to be fluent with the knit and purl stitches!  It is great fun using these size 13 needles!!  The project (can't say just what that is at this time as Christmas is not that far away) moves along quite rapidly.
More than that I want to show you the BEAUTIFUL handwork of Ning's Pottery in Owatonna, MN.

This artisan was selling her lovely pottery at a local craft show that I attended this past summer.  Much to my delight I was able to purchase this fun to use yarn bowl to use when I knit or crochet.  The colors are lovely.

The following photos show the detail Ning adds to her unique pieces.

More of Ning's creations can be found on her website:
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Hob Nobbers Blog Decorating Give-Away

Hello Friends!
Just a quick note to share about a give-away on an sweet acquaintance's blog.  Sandy of, is offering this give-away in preparation for Christmas Decorating.  You have to check it out for yourselves to learn more about it!!

Sandy's Pinterest site is chock full of fun inspiration and ideas for CREATING!  Gotta love that!!
HAPPY HAPPY TRAILS to you......~Sandie

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Life By Design: A Show about Lisa Leonard, Jewelry, Faith and Family (Pr...

Give a listen as this couple shares their inspiration for living moment by moment in this lifetime ~ and being CREATIVE while living their daily lives!  It's exciting to know that they give our God praise for all that they have!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

My First Canvas Collage/Jeanne Oliver's 2012 E-course

WOW!!  It is completed!  This my first ever canvas collage.  It was to be an altered journal according to our class schedule, but I used the Never Dull technique on a magazine image to make this collaged figure.  The inspiration and encouragement came from Jeanne Oliver's CREATIVELY MADE online e-course (which was so generously gifted to me by Carol Spinski).

This creation is an expression of my being...

(Click on photos to enlarge)

Through this course I have learned to take time to think on who I am.  God created each one of us as unique individuals with special gifts that we are to put to use!!
Thinking over my life thus far I have had fun thinking on the gifts God has given ME.  It has been instilled within me to love others.  Much joy comes from sharing time with those I love.  It is such a rich  pleasure to be loved in return.  Children hold a special "key" to my heart as well as the pets that enrich my this time our sweet canine companion - Ladie, and two felines - Fauna and Sable, and my
flock of doted-upon chickens.
In March of this past year my life was blessed with the addition of my first grandbaby!  Oh what joy he brings to the moments that I share with him.  It's an added blessing that I get to spend more time with his mama and papa too!
My two sons and their ladies are such a joy to share time with.

In the following photo I wanted you to see that I added just a bit of wire and beads to adorn the top side.
Decorative staples are used to attach the wire.
 The woman symbolizes me and the owl is representative of all that I love.   One can nurture, but we must be prepared to let it have wings.

In this corner I added a pieced layer of paper with "I Love You,  Remembering these special moments with you".  The #52 is representative of the year I came to be on this earthly journey.

To NURTURE and love, whether it be people
 in my life, animals, gardening, creating,
 bringing heartfelt warmth to our home 
and/or just plain LIVING!
  How grateful I am for my life and who I am!!
  "Abide With Me" is a hymn that my heart sings.

Liquitex Modeling Paste and a round tissue paper cardboard roll were used to add texture to this area as I recall "bumps" and other difficult times in my life.   We all have them, even though we experience different circumstances.

These "keys" and the words, You have the keys to my heart",  remind me that I am not alone.  God has the MAIN KEY to my heart and others hold their very own "key" with the laughter, tears, joys and sorrows that get shared in our everyday living.

On the lower right edge I added the stamped date for when I completed my canvas collage.
It has been so energizing to be creating in my "Creative Haven"
while working on this project, so I stamped those words
as a reminder!

What a delightful learning experience this has been!  THANK YOU, Jeanne, for your thoughtfulness and the inspiration shared, and a special thank you to Carol Spinski at Raised In Cotton ~ ~ for gifting me with this opportunity to learn something so new and exciting!!

Sweet Autumn blessings to each of you reading this note!


Thursday, August 30, 2012

Folding Book/Accordion Photo Album

Greetings to each of you that have come to my table(blog)!!  It's with a grateful heart that I am recovering from my surgery.  Having returned to work, at a temporary computer job instead of being a baker, I am happy to report that I am adjusting and finding renewed strength!
What joy there is in knowing that my Lord watches over me.  He cares for my every moment and my well being! 

My sweet grandson provides terrific inspiration!!!

What a delight it is to find some creative time and have a project with photos to share on my blog!  So many other important events have been happening in my having the pleasure of sharing time with this sweet little fellow ~ my grandson(sounds so good to my ears!)!!!   Harrison has been with us for 5 months already!

For Harrison's GREAT grandma's birthday I made this folding photo album as a way to share these photos.  To me these are so fun to create, especially in 6"x6" and 9"x9" finished sizes.   What a unique way to display captured precious moments of time!  

Using supplies that I had on hand I wanted a timeless yet fun combination of color and texture.

As you can see in the first photo I made the closure with a length of  hand-dyed bias seam binding(using Ranger Distress Inks).  Worked so well in creating my own color to coordinate with Cosmo Cricket's EARTH LOVE designer papers.   The front label is made from card stock that I painted with chalkboard paint.  Writing with a white gel pen made it look like I used chalk.   A wooden button from Prima Marketing adds a finishing touch.

The inside pages are made from 3- 12"x12" sheets of card stock, which resulted in the 9"x9" size book.  

Hopefully you can tell how this book has a unique way of folding and unfolding.  Several sites have a tutorial available.  The one that helped me along is  Their photos were very helpful in configuring the folds!!

Back Cover (or right side of book)

Center Page

Front cover (or left side of book).

To fit the photos onto the folded pages I cut and resized each one.
  In trying to make it an"unfussy" back cover I just added a simple tag that I stamped with my name and year.  The colorful dots on the inside pages are stamped with distress inks to mimic those on the book covers.

Back Cover
It's a fun pleasure to share these baby photos with Harrison's loving GREAT grandma, who lives so far away.  

May you and your families stay safe while you have a memorable Labor Day holiday!!

Until we meet again.......~Sandie

Monday, June 25, 2012

Creating Vintage Journal Via Jeanne Oliver's E-Course

Hello to each of you reading my blog!  Finally I am feeling up to posting as my eyesight is clearing and time spent holding my arms at a keyboard is improving.   Healing from my surgery is taking place and I have SO MUCH to be grateful for!!  Hopefully soon I can begin to drive a vehicle again.  Thankfully, my husband and friends have helped me in getting to church and to the grocery stores.  Otherwise "Home Sweet Home" is where I have spent my time recouping ~ and that is with a GRATEFUL heart!!
Here's my first creative endeavor in what seems a LONG while....

OH WHAT FUN!!  This past week I was inspired to create a vintage journal with the tutorial by Jeanne Oliver in her online e-course, "Creatively Made" that I am part of (THANK YOUS to Carol Spinski at Raised In Cotton!).  
(You can click on the photos for a larger view.)

Using an old book I cut it apart for the hard covers....

Then I cut up an old tattered doily to use around the edges...

The papers I chose are from "Love Letters" by Recollections Signature.  Ranger Distress Inks added extra color.   

Mod Podge worked very well for adhering the papers to the hard book covers.

My completed VINTAGE JOURNAL's front cover.

Tags, chipboard, ribbon, beads and trinkets embellish the pages...

Inside are many pages just awaiting my added thoughts and comments of my experience in Jeanne Oliver's "Creatively Made" e-course.  Jeanne is so inspiring!!  Just what I needed at this time in my life!!

How fun to meet others that are participating in this class online and to see what creations they bring forth!

THANK YOU, Jeanne!!!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Gift of Handmade Tags From Marcia!

While still in my "soft" neck brace, due to the cervical spinal fusion surgery in April 2012, and with blurry vision and unable to use my hands creatively I received TWO lovely sets of hand-stamped distressed tags from Marcia of!!!  What a sweet blessing and a generous gift!!  Even my sweet feline friend, Fauna, was next to me to share in the delight!!
( Most likely she would like to be playing with the strings!  TEE HEE!!!)

Once again my heart is soooo very grateful for each and every prayer that continues to help me through this prolonged time of healing!  I'm usually an enthusiastic and creative person so this slow pace is a bit difficult to deal with.....BUT God has been using the time to let me know that He is ALWAYS with me and KNOWS what I am going through!!

How treasured are the visitation times of friends!

As of TODAY the surgeon gave permission to remove the neck brace for short periods throughout the day when I am being fairly still.  OH YAYA!!!  Now, hopefully, I can look down a little more and see clearly to work on some paper crafting projects that I long for!!   That's an answer to prayers!!  The first fusion area is beginning to show signs of fusing together as needed ~ TWO more to go!!  My job is still on hold until this happens.  Some of the "blue" in my heart is seeing bits of SUNSHINE!  

MANY "THANK YOUS!!" again, Marcia, for your generous thoughtfulness in brightening my days!
Sweet bouquets of hugs.............~Sandie

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Thursday, May 10, 2012

Alive and Getting Better!!!

As you can see these photos aren't of my "best side"!!  TEE HEE!!  Due to the 3-level cervical spinal fusion surgery  of 3 weeks ago my neck is in this very stiff brace!

Once home, after being admitted to the hospital twice due to having a very severe reaction to the anesthesia/narcotics, the living room sofa become my abode for the first 2 and a half weeks.  These photos were taken after that time as I felt ever so dreadful those first few weeks!
After my first early dismissal from the hospital, Diane -a retired nurse and  God's precious angel of mercy, came to spend time with me as I was to have care 24/7 for my first week at home. Danger of choking is very real as the surgery is performed through an anterior(front) four inch incision close to the base of my neck.  During surgery the esophagus, trachea and aorta get clamped to one side, so the spinal discs can be replace by cadaver bone and the titanium plate adhered to the 4 vertebrae with 8 screws,  thus usually causing this area to suffer some trauma at this time.
 When Diane arrived she realized that I was near dehydration due to not being able to keep ANYTHING in my stomach and having the dry heaves.  I hadn't eaten in 5 days.
Diane drove me to the ER and expertly guided my way to get immediate help.  She and the many nurses helped me to hang on as I truly just wanted to leave my body.  I hurt everywhere!  
This following photo shows how much better I felt after getting to bathe and have my hair washed!  Sweet relief.  My husband, sons and daughter(-in-law ) helped me to have my laptop and necessary supplies nearby.  I felt so wrapped up in love from the quilt I snuggled in that was made by a DEAR DEAR friend last Christmas.  
Gifts of flowers and plants added much to brighten the room and my heart!
 "Dear to the heart" well wishing cards brightened my spirits.  Oh, how I have learned that I must give in return to others who are hurting.  
 My loving husband provided the roses of many colors!

Ladie, my sweet companion chocolate Lab was longing for us to go out for our daily walks.
Yet she patiently watched the world go by through the glass storm door for several days UNTIL Amy, a sweet animal-loving neighbor came to her rescue, by offering daily walks.

How amazing our God is in providing for our smallest to the greatest of needs at just the right time.
Two days ago my whole being felt so BLUE!  Seemed that there was nothing I was capable of doing other than taking short walks or sleeping. (I'm ever so grateful to have my faithful friend, JAM, that would get me out for a daily walk and companionship!)  This feeling was ever so contrary to my way of living!  Even God's heartfelt Word just seemed empty.  Does that ever happen to any of you??
Yesterday, on a warmer sunny day, my sweet daughter(in-law) and my 6 week old grandson surprised me with time at a local garden nursery.   Traveling by car is uncomfortable, but the trip was short, so we enjoyed all the BEAUTIFUL colors and textures of plant life and garden embellishments.
That helped so much as gardening is another one of my passions.
Today my friend, Mary Ellen shared laughter and tears with me as we visited over the yummy ginger laced, lemon iced cookies she shared with Wayne and me.  VERY HARD to resist the temptation of eating Wayne's portion!!!  HEE HEE!!  I'll be a good girl!!

This song comes to mind as I write....
"Count your blessings, name them one by one.
Count your blessings, see what God has done!

Here's the link with music.....
Count your blessings

Well, my friends, this has taken some time for me to write so I will close for now to rest and refresh for a new day ahead and have time with my husband.
Sweet evening blessings................~Sandie

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Sunday, April 15, 2012

Thinking of you....

Just quick "HELLO" to let you know that I may be absent from my blog for awhile as I am having a 3 level spinal fusion surgery this coming Thursday!  Each and every prayer whispered for me is so appreciated.
These lyrics have been floating through my mind so often as this is a song I learned as a young girl.  Alison Kraus sings it so beautifully........

I don't know about tomorrow, I just live from day to day;
I don't borrow from it's sunshine,
For it's skies may turn to gray.
I don't worry o'er the future, For I know what Jesus said;
And today I'll walk beside Him, For He knows what lies ahead

Many things about tomorrow I don't seem to understand;
But I know who holds tomorrow, and I know who holds my hand

Ev'ry step is getting brighter
As the golden stairs I climb; ev'ry burden's getting lighter,
Ev'ry cloud is silver-lined.
There the sun is always shining,
There no tear will dim the eye;
At the ending of the rainbow, Where the mountains touch the sky.
 {written in 1950 by a traveling preacher named Ara Stanphill}
But I know who holds tomorrow, and I know who holds my hand!!!

My husband captured this photo of me today so I share it with you as I am delighted that I have the blessings of life and love!
May you know the hand that holds yours through ALL of life's up and downs!!
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Monday, April 9, 2012

Rag Quilt For My Grandbaby, Harrison

What a delight to cut, piece and stitch this rag quilt for my new grandson, Harrison!  His mama and papa  helped to choose the patterns and colors of the high quality flannel.  Each square has three layers of flannel which makes the quilt ever so soft and cozy!

Many pieces were stitched together to form the larger squares.
 This photo shows the front side of seams before laundering frays them.
In the following photo the reverse smooth side is displayed.

The seams were then clipped at 1/4 inch intervals, being careful not to cut through the stitching!

After being laundered just once the seams have frayed quite well giving the front side ruffled looking frames.

The quilt bears a label I designed, printed on the computer, then added just a bit of embroidered French knots before being handstitched to the quilt with a small bordering frame.

This GRANDMA is excited to share this captured image of Harrison!   He melted my heart with this expression while I was holding him!!! 

Mama and Papa are so delighted to have Harrison in their lives!  This photo from Easter morning warms  my heart.  It is my heart's desire that Harrison grows up in the knowledge that his family loves him and more so that God loves him!
How grateful we are that his mama had a healthy pregnancy and a safe birthing.  His Papa is so loving and caring.  What wonderful parents!
We are all so blessed!!

How grateful this GRANDMA'S heart is for so many fabulous blessings!

Please know that if I am absent that I must spend time with this precious gift from above before my spinal surgery date!!  It may be a while before I can hold him afterwards.

With hopes that your Easter was touched with Christ's priceless love and grace!  Because He arose from the dead we are able to have LIFE and live it more abundantly!  Live your life in a most ABUNDANTLY joyful way, my friends!      ~Sandie
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