i've been finding the most exquisite bits of lace lately. well, maybe not just lately, as i am always searching. i purchased three of these butterflies here. they are so delicate and fine. the seller was so kind. i sent her a picture of one of my lace books, so she could see what i was going to do with the butterflies. she owed me a little for a shipping overage and she asked me would i prefer that she send me a little envelope of lace scraps. of course...i never turn down scraps!
the envelope arrived yesterday filled with these beautiful bits. etsy sellers are the best. i have so many great stories about the nice people i have met on etsy. when i was first starting out making my leather journals, i ordered a few scraps of leather from a purse maker. she said she would throw a few extra pieces in the box. it ended up being more than a few. she sent me a giant box full of leather - all really nice, all different and some really large pieces. that was wonderful, but not the end of the story. she said, oops, she forgot to send the original piece that i had ordered. i told her it was ok, no need to send it. but she went ahead and sent it anyway, along with another huge pile of leather. i was so thankful for that and i still am. it really helped me a lot. it brought my books to whole new level and i'm sure that is one of the reasons i kept going with the book making. and a couple of years later, i am still using some of that leather.
i've got two books on the table this week. i'm kind of alternating. this one is similar to the last lace book that i made. i had a lot of scraps left over from that one. all tea-dyed. and all the excess paper that i had cut from the other one. so i am making a small size tea-dyed lace book, but i'm changing it up a bit and using different leather. i'm just getting to fun part of sewing on the pearls and buttons.
i found two of these beautiful doilies here and...
and a whole row of these points. old and delicate and very pretty.
some of that will most likely end up in the other book that i'm working on. this one is going to be larger, since a few people have expressed an interest in a larger size lace book. this one is all whites, creams, beige, a touch of pink here and there, a soft off-white leather... i feel myself stretching with this one. trying new ideas. i think it's good to continually improve. and old dogs can learn new
tricks : )
speaking of old dogs, it's my birthday today. i'm not too good at self portraits. or any kind of portraits, yet i'm feeling brave today. so here i am. age 46. and feeling pretty good. a few sparkly silver highlights in my hair, but not many wrinkles. still in good shape. and overall, in a pretty happy place in my life. i have three secrets. i walk. a lot. i love dessert and i never turn it down. so, if i know there is good dessert, i eat just a little bit of dinner. i actually would like to eat dessert first, but i don't. maybe not so good from a nutritional standpoint, but my thighs thank me. and the last thing. and the best. and the thing that gives me "the happy". i live an artful life. i surround myself with art. i dream about art. i make art. every. single. day.
"Dear God," she prayed, "let me be something every minute of every hour of my life. Let me be gay; let me be sad. Let me be cold; let me be warm. Let me be hungry...have too much to eat. Let me be ragged or well dressed. Let me be sincere - be deceitful. Let me be truthful; let me be a liar. Let me be honorable and let me sin. Only let me be something every blessed minute. And when I sleep, let me dream all the time so that not one little piece of living is ever lost."
it's been raining on and off for a week. i feel i may be able to sail away in this little boat if it keeps up any longer.
it has poured down at times in a deep, cleansing sort of way.
i stepped out this morning between raindrops and found little gifts of nature strewn about the yard.
i collected a handful of these cicada wings. i think they're beautiful...
...like tiny stained glass windows.
all of the graduation festivities are over for now. grammie has gone home. my daughter has gone off on a trip to the beach with friends. the other kids are catching up with their friends. the house is quiet today and i'm slowly getting back to my work. i do feel energized and inspired after my week off. even though i didn't know it, i guess i needed a little rest. i hope to have some new things to show you soon...
so, graduation was nice. no, i didn't cry. i only got a little verklempt when her schools' all-male singing group, The A'Cafella's, sang this song. it was so beautiful. i think, for me, the hard part will be in august when we have to leave her at college. i'll save my crying for then.
we've been doing some celebrating here with grandma, who came down from NY for the graduation. we're enjoying the weather, sitting for hours on the deck, chatting and grilling up all sorts of good food. i'm looking forward to next month when we travel up to NY to see all the rest of our family and celebrate some more.
when i look at the picture above, i'm surprised to see how big and grown-up they all look. and i guess that's because they are! life has sure changed in the last few years, but i'm making a real effort not to be sad about all the growing up. after all, i've been here for every minute of it, no regrets at all. and they really are turning into fine people to be around. so, even though the house will be a little noisier and messier and the fridge will be a lot emptier, i'm looking forward to summertime.