Monday, November 14, 2016

Just a Little Rant

Beware!  I don't typically complain or "rant" on my blog, so this is a rare crabby pants post by the usually ever-optimistic bluebird!

Over the past week, I've thought a lot about our Presidential election.  It didn't turn out the way many thought it would, and certainly not the way I wanted it to.  I was in shock for a day or two, had some good discussions with coworkers, and mostly avoided commenting on social media.  (Not that I didn't want to!)  But I have too many coworkers, friends and family members on both ends of the political spectrum that all have their opinions and beliefs, just as I do.  I refuse to argue that any beliefs are any less relevant than mine.  Discussions are good, but name-calling and insults are pointless.  I only have my own experiences to draw from, as does everyone else.  I have LGBT friends and family members, as well as dear friends from other cultures.  I find everyone fascinating, and whether I like their ideas or not, I try to see why they believe what they do.  Everyone has their reasons - I only hope to receive the same respect for my beliefs.

I might be disappointed with this election, but I will stay steady in my beliefs and fight (vote) for what I believe in.  I don't have to like the President Elect's ideas, but I will hold my tongue and give him a chance to make things better.  Elections are like this - back and forth.  Each candidate thinks they can do better than the other.  No one can change anything overnight or all alone.  

What really bothers me the most are the reactions on BOTH sides.  The gloating and "told-you-so" attitudes, as well as the protesting, blocking and whining.  Where did all this nastiness come from? Why can neither side win or lose gracefully?  The hatefulness is incredible.  What good can this possibly be teaching our children?  

We've tried to teach our kids to be open-minded, kind, and respectful problem-solvers.  But our world shows them how to fight, hate and be nasty to get what they want.  In my oh-so-practical brain, the hypocrisy is incredible.  I don't understand what happened to "working together".  And honesty and truth.  Sheesh - out the window.  Pretty sad when candidates can't tell you what they'll do for you, but they can tell you a million reasons why the other guy is your worst nightmare.  Most of the time I wasn't sure who the ads were promoting.  And most proclaim "integrity".  Maybe I have a different definition of that word?

I have many reasons to be bitter about a lot of things, but it certainly wouldn't do me any good.  My husband is back to work at a permanent job after several years of temporary jobs that started during the recession in 2009.  The nasty comments about unemployment and jobless people were pretty disheartening.  We have also lost 11 family members during the past 4 years - ranging in age from 11 to 80-something.  Watching loved ones grieve is so hard!  Bitter?  I could be that crabby old bluebird instead of a happy one.

But we've also had our daughters' weddings to celebrate, as well as other family and friends being blessed with weddings, babies and good health.  So I choose to be happy and optimistic about the future!  I'd rather count my blessings than complain about how bad it is.  Or protest that things aren't going my way.  I'm on the right side of the dirt, and there are so many wonderful things to look forward to.   A little hope does wonders.


Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Seeing the Light?!

At our last Twin Cities Tatters gathering, we got to chatting about various lighting and magnifiers. I've tried the lighted magnifying glass around the neck, but it always slips.  Recently, I've been thinking maybe I need a new bifocal Rx, but really I think it boils down to the lighting in my living room.  It doesn't seem like it should be this tough to figure out why I can't stay focused very long, but so many things can affect productivity!

Another tatter had magnifiers that clip on to your glasses, and can be flipped up.  Great idea!  I hadn't seen those before - I guess I really hadn't looked, so I didn't know that they were even an option.  I went right away and found some at Michael's for about $10, and have been trying them out.  I really like that they just clip right on to my glasses - no fussing with a lanyard or a clip.  Now I just need to deal with the lighting.  My sewing room has a wonderful lamp over my chair, but as it gets darker and colder in these fall months, it's much cozier to sit in the living room!  

Who knew a $10 pair of clip-on magnifying glasses and a good lamp light could be so exciting?  Ha!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

More Crafty Wedding Stuff

Yes, we've made it through another wedding!  It's been so fun watching our 2 daughters marry their best friends - we now have TWO truly great son-in-laws.  And, in preparation, once again I chopped up another wedding dress.  YIKES!  This time it was my own dress.  What the heck? My dress has been in storage for 33 years, and my daughters didn't want to wear it.  Regardless, it's still difficult to cut up a beautiful dress.  Well, the first cut anyway . . . then I was on a mission!

My daughter wanted some lace from my dress for a sort of veil - just to drape down from a barrette on the back of her head.  So out came the scissors and some hot glue after finding a blingy barrette. Easy peasy!  Bluebird Wang at it again - it's incredible how much it costs to purchase a veil or headpiece.  Cheapy McCheaper Mom to the rescue, ha ha!

The intent was to just let it hang down in the back, but the photographer spread the lace out over her shoulders.  I think it was a wonderful idea, and looks like a beautiful shawl in some of the photos.  I really thought that was a fabulous idea - obviously he has some experience with brides!

We also saved some $$ by making the bouquets ourselves again.  We bought some bouquets of mixed flowers from Costco (a membership warehouse store) and figured out the  bouquets.  You can order mixed bouquets of certain colors (in season) and then take them apart to create bouquets.  A little floral wire and floral tape, and voila!  A mess, but WOW - were we pleased!  They turned out just perfect, and looked beautiful.  I did wake up on the day of the wedding hoping the flowers hadn't wilted or GOD FORBID froze in the refrigerator in the garage.  Needless to say, I was in the garage checking on them at about 5:30 a.m. 

I really think they look fabulous! [patting self on back here]

Another thing we did ourselves was make the cupcake stands.  We purchased crystal platters/plates from Goodwill, and glued them to various height glasses/sundae dishes/vases.  Better than renting a plywood cupcake "tree"!  Haven't seen cake and cupcake pictures yet, but they looked very nice.

The bride also made her centerpiece vases, and for favors dipped pinecones in wax with a wick wrapped around them for "fire starters" for fall bonfires.  They were in cello bags with fall colored ribbons, and a tag that said "C'mon baby, light my fire" with their name and date.  I love stuff like this - I think my girls have inherited this love as well!

And now, they've been married for a week.  What a fun day it was!

And, I think I can get back to some tatting and sewing on my own projects now.  I've been a little overwhelmed [to say the least] but I think we will get back to some normal routines now!  [What's normal, really?]

Happy Fall!  My favorite time of year.