allie-oops sweet happy life

What a sweet happy life it is!

Friday, October 14, 2022

The Curated Life

 I've been thinking a lot lately about curating my life - I like the term, "curated", as it gives me a sense of intention - a deliberate choosing of what to put into both my home and my days. Perhaps with all the turmoil and busyness this year has brought, it has created in me a desire for a calm, uncluttered life.  

Mom has been hospitalized four times this year.  Weeks in a nursing home.  Lots of home care visitors.  Lots of doctor appointments and tests.  It's been very difficult to find a rhythm for our days, to say the least.

Jennifer's latest post, on elefantz.com, really made me think.  She used the word "rhythms", which struck a chord with me.  I remember reading awhile ago that someone decided to think of those never-ending chores as "cycles" - getting up in the morning and figuring out where they were in the laundry cycle, the dish cycle, etc.  I tried to think of those things that way, but it didn't work for me.  I'm a problem-solver - and dirty dishes in the sink?  I see those as a problem, so I solve that problem and forget it.  Trouble is, it's a never-ending problem.  So, thinking of those chores as rhythms is easier for me.  Like the ebb and flow of the tide - they're always with us, there's no end, but by changing my perception of them, it creates less stress. 

Especially with mom here.  This is the cleanest you'll ever see my kitchen table:


That's all mom's stuff.  We have boxes of medical equipment on a stool that I can no longer use, along with the Play-Doh that she uses to help her hands be more flexible.


Nothing gets put away, because there is no place for it, and we use it every day.  For an order-loving obsessive like me, what to do?  It's our rhythm for now.

I do get to escape to my art room almost every day.  And it calms my soul.


That's about as cluttered as I like to see ANY horizontal surface when not actually in use.  That's my natural rhythm.

And now, we've made the decision that mom will stay here, we will bring some of her stuff here, furniture and paintings - don't ask me where we'll put it.  This will take some serious curating for my home!  And now her home as well.  I want her to feel at home here, not like she's just taking up space that I'd rather use for something else.  

Living with intention, making the decision to either add or remove something from your days, these are hard things - but I feel so much better for doing them.  Choosing to spend my time doing not just for mom but for myself as well - reading my bible, drawing, painting, caring for my home - these are things that are not only necessary but joyful.  Cluttering up my days with too much to do makes me crazy stressed.  A deliberate slowing, and choosing to think in terms of rhythms instead of problems has actually solved a problem, of never enough time to take care of the daily "problems" (dishes, laundry, meds, errands) that aren't really problems, but tasks....and there is a rhythm to them, it just took a change of mind to see it.

How do you curate your time and home?  I'd love to know.

Til next time;

Love,

Allie




Friday, September 23, 2022

A Grand and Glorious Day

The wedding is over, and what a wedding it was!


credit: https://misslyssphotography.com/


Such a thrill seeing your child marry the woman of their dreams.  We actually made it on time, even though hubby had to run to the store the morning of to get a shirt, shoes and a belt.

They asked for no cell phone pictures, so my phone never made it out of my purse, but my cousin captured my son and I doing the mother/son dance.



My son chose the song, My Mother's Eyes by Frankie Valli for our dance - oh that was a tearjerker, let me tell you.

My favorite picture:

credit: https://misslyssphotography.com/

The pictures aren't the highest quality because I shamelessly stole them from her facebook, and facebook compresses them.

But oh, what a gorgeous, perfect, thrilling day.  I didn't get to sleep until 4am (drank too much coffee at the reception, it was delicious).  The wedding itself was at a chapel on a lake, down a steep hill, and they carried my mom down in a wheelchair - had to go down a few steps - at least we know her pacemaker is working!!!!!  She got quite a ride.

And now, life may return to a little bit more normal - dare we hope?  Our temps have gone from 88F to 44F overnight, I had to turn the heat on this morning for mum.  Too early!!!

See you soon!
Love,
Allie
credit: https://misslyssphotography.com/



PS - some comments are not coming to my email, some are - I'll try to remember to come back here to read them!

 

Saturday, September 3, 2022

  "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."

(Philippians 4:13)

I see this verse everywhere, but usually translated to Christ who strengthens me.  Now, I love the KJ Bible - and I believe that every word of God is pure - and that if the KJ says "which", there's a reason.  So one night I just pondered this verse, prayed, and the next morning I thought, what if I've been reading it wrong?  What if I read it "I can do all things through Christ, which strengtheneth me?" Emphasis on the comma.  As in, the knowledge that I can do all things through Christ strengthens me.  Does that make sense?  It sure did to me....maybe I'm nuts, but it gives me comfort.  Well, all of it gives me comfort, lol!


my front yard early in the morning


As I've mentioned in the previous post, a lot has been happening this year.  Could I do all these things in my own strength?  Um, NO.  Mom just got out of an eleven day hospital stay, where they discovered she has aspiration pneumonia, she's taking thin liquids into her lungs.  So now I'm thickening her water, protein drinks, and soup.  It's tasteless, but I won't tell you what it looks like, ugh.


Hospital parking lot bunny

She seems to be doing better, she was really mentally altered there for awhile.  She's very glad to be home, and I'm glad she's home as well.  Now to see if we can get back into our routine of meals and medicines, exercises and cleanup....seems like if you stop even briefly, it takes extra effort to get back into it!  


I've wanted to get outside with my camera, but have failed miserably.  I must admit it was nice going up to the hospital twice a day, at least it got me outside....winter will come all too soon, and then I won't want to step out the door!  I'm going shopping with my brother tomorrow, he needs something to wear to my son's wedding, and I need shoes.  I think it will be nice to get out with him, and spend some time, just the two of us.


flowers in my front yard

May the peace of Christ fill your minds, and your homes....
Love,
Allie







Saturday, August 6, 2022

Been A Little While, Eh?

 

Hello my friends, it's been a very long year for me so far, although I've tried to keep up with you all through your blogs!  Let's see, what's happened this year.....

I guess it started with my hubby falling on the ice in January.  He hurt his ankle quite badly, couldn't walk at all, then fell every day again with the crutches.  A week later, I fell myself, in the garage, and ended up not being able to walk or use my right arm.  I fell on my shoulder.  What a blessing that my son was here, and was able to move our coffee makers upstairs!  

After 3 weeks of not being able to get downstairs, my brother called and told me he thought our mom was having a stroke.  Somehow, I managed to get dressed and into the car, and took her to the hospital. It may have been a mini-stroke, but they ran all the tests and she seemed fine to them.  I brought her home, and from that night on, she was living with me.

Eye surgery.  Pacemaker surgery.  Learning how to do insulin (she couldn't remember how to even pick her finger to get blood).  Finding all new doctors for her.  A fall, and a week later, we all got covid.  

After the fall, I took her to the ER, as she was acting goofy again - they kept her for a UTI.  By this time, we had been through the quarantine period for covid, but she was still testing positive so they stuck her in isolation.  This is how I had to visit her:


And my gosh, was it hot!  She made it through that, and came home, then fell again that very same night - hard - and had an ambulance ride where they again kept her.  This time, because I wasn't with her, and she was still testing positive, they wouldn't let me in with her.  She went from there to a nursing home, where they took abysmal care of her, and she finally came home.  Malnourished, with cellulitis, and very weak - but glad to be home.


Because, you know, home is where your daughter spoils you rotten.

During all of this, my arm was still not functioning, but it's better now, I can almost lift it as high as my shoulder.  And it doesn't wake me at night anymore.

Needless to say, I've done nothing else.  All of my sewing stuff is either packed away or given away.  My drawing supplies and paints are languishing.  My house is a disaster.  But you know?  God is so good!  My house is also filled with laughter, good food, and blessings too numerous to name.  

I have to admit I've missed blogging.  It's become a record for me of the years that have gone by.  Now that I can hold a camera with two hands again, I think I'll start back up.  For myself, though, to remind me - I know with no quilty content, I won't see most of you again.  And that's ok, we're all busy, believe me I understand that!

So - in the next month, barring any unforeseen problems, my son will be getting married.  And I have to find something to wear.  I also just (foolishly) cut 6 inches off my hair, so I may have to find a hairdresser.  Hard to cut your own when one arm doesn't work right, lol.  Life is full of the little daily things right now, so we are looking forward to a major occasion!  

Love,

Allie



Thursday, October 28, 2021

On The Road Again?

 Good morning, lovely friends.  Some more scriptures to share with you today.  

I've been confined to home since my car decided to stop working properly.  As I was driving, it sounded like someone laying underneath it with a very large hammer - not a good sound at all!  A friend of my husband's from work was selling his car, so here is my new ride - 


A 2009 Jeep Liberty.  I will love it as soon as the title transfer is complete and I can actually drive it.  I need something safe to ferry mum around, you know!


Monday I played around with doodling, first time since my Florida trip.  Incredibly, I found that I could get just as much housework done during the day as I usually do - instead of getting at it first thing, and keeping on all day, I pulled out pen and paint and just did a bit of housework while getting a new cup of coffee.  What an eye opener that was.....no more doing housework first.


I may turn this into a design.  My goal is to fill up my watercolor sketchbook with scripture.


So, here are the new scripture blocks, some have pictures and some don't.  Click on the title to download!

Scripture Quilt Block 31

Scripture Quilt Block 32

Scripture Quilt Block 33

Scripture Quilt Block 34

Scripture Quilt Block 35

Ok, there ya go, I'll be back next week probably - meanwhile, enjoy yourselves!  I've got mum here today, just fed her lunch and she'll probably have a nap now....her favorite thing to do here.  *smiles*

Love,

Allie

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

I'm Back

 Good morning lovely friends - I am back from a little road trip, a quick one, to Florida.  Last year, my dear friend from high school lost her dad, I helped her clear out his house so they could sell it, and then she lost her brother.  I stored her things at my house, because I have the room, and why pay for a storage unit?  So last week we drove most of it down to her home in Florida.



I love road trips, especially through the Smoky Mountains.  We stopped overnight each way in Asheville, N.C. and had breakfast at a darling little Christian restaurant in Chimney Rock.

I haven't been to Florida in about 40 years.  The forecast was for four days of rain, and rain all the way down - but the Lord was good to us and gave us grand weather the whole trip.  Traffic was also not bad, considering the amount of road construction everywhere!  

Lunch on the St. John's river

My friend Patty's kitty seemed to love my purse - he stuck his whole head and front paws in it, too funny!  He's an absolute sweetheart.  I almost felt like I should leave my purse there for him.  I promise I wasn't smuggling catnip.



Coming home wasn't too bad, the boys did dishes while I was gone (shocking, I know).  I have been incredibly tired since I got home - I'm not sure if it's the weather (cold and gloomy) or just that I'm getting a bit, um, senior.  I think I'll blame the weather.

More scripture for you today.  I still haven't been doing any drawing, and I think I will challenge myself to do a drawing a day, no matter how bad it is.  My goal is to fill my sketchbook with drawings and scripture, and then get a new one - maybe by the fifth one I'll be better, lol.  So, here we go, click on the title to be taken to the download.








And now I'm off to start my day, and dream of mountains....have a wonderful week, I'll see you soon.
Love,
Allie






Thursday, October 14, 2021

New Stitchery Club From Jennifer...

 Oh goodness - if you love embroidery, or even if you just think you might someday try it, RUN over to Jennifer's site - she has the most stunning new club!!!!  




Check it out - she's amazing, by far my most favorite designer!  I know I said I stopped sewing, but these are too stunning to pass by.  What a gift the Lord has given her!  
Click on this link - The Homemaker's Heart With Jennifer


I am back from my little road trip, and will upload new scriptures soon....still in recovery mode, you know?  The snacks being delivered today should help with that.  I'll have pictures too!

Love,

Allie



Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Mornings

 Scho-ka-kola;


Check.

Coffee;


Check.

Computer on;


Check.

You know what this means?  It means I'll wake up soon.  By the way, Scho-ka-kola (or, as we call it, German meth chocolate) was given to the German soldiers in WWII - it was a coveted bounty for the Allied soldiers.  It has caffeine in it.  Yes, you can still buy it today.  It helps me wait for my morning coffee.

It's a chilly morning here, with another beautiful day on the way, sunny but not as warm as it should be (according to heat-loving me).  We had flooding rain last week, and lost our power for four days!  Thank Jesus for generators.  We had just had groceries delivered, and managed to keep everything just fine, although I couldn't cook.  But morning coffee, with the coffee-maker plugged into the generator, made up for it.

While I wait for this morning's delivery of groceries, I thought I would upload some more scriptures.

Scripture Quilt Block 21

Scripture Quilt Block 22

Scripture quilt block 23

Scripture quilt block 24

Embellishments set 6

Click on the title to download.  There's only one more set of embellishments to upload, I guess I'd better get busy drawing....so far, my "art" days haven't happened, there's been far too much going on.  But I have been doodling!


More of a practice, you know, just to warm up and get in the mood.  I need to remember to switch my phone to airplane mode while I doodle, as interruptions don't help the flow.

Sunday I met with a quilter, and gave her the rest of the fabric I had from my best friend.  I kept a tiny amount - as mum would like me to make her a new rice bag, and I'll need one as well.  I also kept the fabric from my boys' scripture quilts, and enough batting to finish them, as I anticipate getting back to that this winter.  But oh the relief of not having all that fabric sitting in totes, gathering dust (metaphorically speaking), guilting me!  I'm so glad it went to someone who will enjoy it.

So that's it for me this week, I'll have mum tomorrow - I need to write out some checks for her, she can no longer see to do even that.  It just breaks my heart - she's an artist, went to art school right out of high school, and I know the feeling of never getting enough of seeing the beauty around us.  But for an artist to not be able to see....oh it's truly heartbreaking.

Friends, have a lovely week, I may not post next week or even the next one after that - I'm taking a little road trip and will tell you all about it coming up.  Be well, be happy, trust the Lord and keep those fingers busy!

Love,

Allie

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Fall Is In The Air

 I love autumn....crisp nights, intense blue skies, apple cider....but I don't love autumn spiders!  The deer are enjoying our apple harvest.



I've got my studio put together, all of my son's stuff is down in his new workroom, the house is starting to come together again.  It's been a busy week.  


I'm looking forward to getting up in the morning, getting my coffee, and just drawing and painting for half the day, instead of shifting stuff from one room to another!

I have more scripture verses for you today.  Something I noticed while embroidering these - I really get tired of stitching text, it's not my favorite thing by far.  But when I'm stitching the word of God, it does not weary me at all!  It's a great way to memorize verses, and I'm able to "think on these things" as I stitch.  I hope you enjoy it too.


Click on the link to download the file.

Scripture quilt block 17

Scripture quilt block 18

Scripture quilt block 19

Scripture quilt block 20

Embellishments set 5


Have a lovely week, my friends, next week will be very busy with two appointments for mum but hopefully some art work will get done as well!  I pray you find something lovely to do with your hands, and that Jesus fills your heart with His peace.

Love,

Allie



Monday, September 6, 2021

Labor Day

 Good afternoon dear friends!  We are having a gorgeous September day here, a holiday, and I'll be messed up on what day it is for the rest of the week.  Today feels like Sunday - I have to keep reminding myself it's not.


My move into my new art studio went very well.  Would you like to see some pictures?  It's very sparse...this is the north wall, looking in from the door.  Did I also mention it's very small?




This is the east and partial south wall.




South wall and door.




Closet wall - this needs work.



The closet is missing a door, and also the slats that go across the top.  At least I have my little snack cart within reach!

AND, my "art cart" is also within reach.  I purely love this little cart - it's adjustable, you can make the baskets straight up and down, or completely horizontal.  Amazing.



I wanted it very simple, uncluttered, easy to clean.  The closets are almost empty (just as well, they need a lot of work).  The views out the windows are nothing spectacular while I'm standing, but when I'm sitting down I feel like I'm in a treehouse!  Lots of treetops and sky.



Both of those pictures were taken standing up; normally I don't see buildings or fences.  It's insanely peaceful here, great cross-breezes, a very pleasant place to be.

Hopefully this will spur me on my art journey - now I just have to clean out the old sewing room and help my son move all his extra stuff into it!  I must say that this is not a new sewing room, I've given up sewing and quilting.  If I do need to do some sewing, there's always the kitchen table and my featherweight.  I'm keeping to one purpose for this room.

So in celebration of my move, I'm uploading some more embroidery files for you.  Well, I would upload them anyway, but if we can make a party out of it, why not?  Here you go, click on the title to download the pdf.






And there are so many more to come!  Fortunately, my wi-fi works great up here, I had been worried about that - but all is well.  Take care dear friends, see you soon!

Love,
Allie

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