Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Nature can be so cruel.

I hate the storms in the springtime. My heart is aching for all of the people in Joplin and over in Oklahoma City area that have lost their homes and even more precious, their loved ones. It's so sad - heartbreaking really.

Although it can't compare what the other people are going through, we are saddened over the loss of our birds in the bird nest. We had a beautiful mama bird and four sweet little eggs. A couple of days ago the eggs hatched. We couldn't tell if there were three or four tiny little birds but we kept a close watch over what was happening and would watch the mama come and go. Last night with the storms rolling in, we weren't sure what we could do to protect the nest but Doug piled up bags of mulch to ensure that the tree that the nest was in wouldn't tip over. This morning when we went out to check there was only one little tiny bird in the nest that looked like it had been through the mill. We looked all over trying to see if we could find the other baby birds but there was no sign of them anywhere. We waited a couple of hours to see if the mama would come back but she never came. I don't even want to think about what might have happened.

We called the local vet that takes in injured birds and took the one remaining tiny bird up to them. They will feed it and turn it over to the bird rescue to take care of and eventually let it back into the wild. Nature can be so cruel.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Want to go to Handmade U?

My friend Rachel is hosting her very first art event in Omaha in September. She chose an adorable cabin to hold the event and is having Michelle Geller as the star instructor! Michelle makes the most fabulous journals and has a cute online shop called Hold Dear and we are sure to have an amazing time.
Space is limited and I believe there are only two more spots available to stay at the actual cabin but there is nearby lodging and Rachel can accomodate 9 more people at the actual workshops. If you are interested *sign up now!*

Monday, May 16, 2011

I won the giveaway on Terri's blog!

I met Terri in person last year when I attended Silver Bella. It's always exciting for me to meet other people from Oklahoma at Creative Events. I really believe we need our *own* event and to be able to have people from other states come here and see all that Oklahoma has to offer.
Anyway - Terri was having a giveaway on her blog and I was chosen as the lucky winner! Yay Me!
First, let me say that everything was packaged so beautifully! Terri has a creative gift. I opened the outer box to find all this and I could hardly wait to check it all out:

She included so many treasures and totally spoiled me.

Look at this precious button bracelet that was inside the beautiful floral box seen above.

I love the vintage flowers and embroidered handkerchief, don't you? And I can never have too many buttons.

Terri also included some beautiful vintage trim that I'm going to have to find a special project to use it on, a vintage buckle, cupcake liners, notecards, and Martha Stewart ink pads.
Thank you Terri! What a sweet surprise!

Nest update: Momma bird is sitting on four little eggs. I'll be sure to let you know when they hatch. :)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Fiberfest 2011

When I first moved to Oklahoma I thought there was going to be tons of country festivals and farm markets. I love that kind of thing and unfortunately, they don't happen nearly as often as I like. I've been here ten years now and finally there seems to be more of a movement towards small markets and festivals. Not like the big state fair that is way too commercial - I like the "real thing" - the small town people showing and selling their stuff.
Today in Tulsa was Fiberfest in which there were a bunch of vendors selling handmade items along with lots of different "fibers" for knitting, crocheting and weaving. There were several free workshops but I didn't get there quite early enough to sign up for any. Fiberfest was held at this beautiful estate in South Tulsa that I never even knew was there! I would have liked to walk the entire grounds but I stayed pretty close to the area the festival was being held.

Some of the vendors were inside this cool barn. I didn't take pictures inside because the lighting wasn't that great. One lady had a table full of felted wool handbags that were beautiful. There were also vendors selling handmade soaps, jewelry, scarves, sweaters, and a vendor selling photographic art.

Lots of big trees and rolling hills. A beautiful location - serene and peaceful.

I purchased some wool and some alpaca fibers but the highlight of the day for me was seeing the two alpacas from JR Alpacas.

Janice Robinson is the owner of these two beautiful creatures and when I asked if I could take a few pictures she put them on a leash and brought them out of the pen so I could take some good shots. How awesome!
They made this cute little noise back and forth "talking" to each other and Janice said they are most definitely pack animals.

I loved hearing her speak about her farm, caring for the alpacas, feeding them, shearing them and the joy she gets from raising them. When she started her alpaca farm there were only about 13 other farms in Oklahoma doing the same thing. Now there are approximately 80 farms. They shear the alpacas once a year in the spring time and it takes one whole year for the coat to grow back in to the desired length for shearing again.

Did you know that alpacas don't have upper front teeth? Nope - just on the bottom and a hard palate on the top.

I'm not a farmer by any stretch of the imagination but I did find myself dreaming about having a little piece of land someday with some Alpacas on it.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Four eggs and a new door!

Yesterday we woke up to find that the nest has survived the storms the last couple of days and now there are four eggs! The weather has suddenly turned cold again (in the low 60's) and today the mama is sitting on her eggs. When we go to check she just sits there very still probably hoping we won't hurt her. No mama - we're making sure everything is okay!

So, we are cruising along on our "to-do" list around the house but my question is this, "Why can't anything be easy or go smoothly?" It's always something, isn't it? Nothing major, just little annoyances along the way.

First, the patio. Now, it looks beautiful but we had to go round and round and had to ultimately go with the *most expensive option* due to an error that was made when the house was built three years ago. The patio turned out beautiful and even better than I thought it would and I am enjoying it immensely. I'm still working on the surrounding landscaping and decorating the patio itself but I just love the flagstone.
Next up was the garage project (no pictures just yet). That is actually still a work in progress in that we have to finish organizing. It took WEEKS to have the sheetrock and insulation removed and a huge dusty mess replacing the sheetrock with the bullnose edges. I couldn't wait to get to the painting phase where they would paint it a new, light color and just make the space feel so much better. In the middle of painting the guy went out for lunch and I checked his progress he had painted it the WRONG color! At first I was so upset since I had only told the project manager about 10 times I wanted a *new* color AND had called him the week before with the specific color I wanted. But, I decided to calm down and just tell the painter he would have to repaint the correct color and he did. Whew.

Finally, our custom front door. The door itself is beautiful and it lets so much light into the front hallway. I can't believe we didn't spring for this when we first moved in. Anyway -we were all excited that it was installed until we realized the company didn't put hinges on the glass panel so I can open it for easy cleaning. We paid extra for an operational glass door and we got one that is welded shut. So a call to the door guy and they have to build us a new panel for the door that will take several weeks. Also, new trim had to be put on the outside of the door so now that has to be painted along with the trim on the inside of the door that had to be removed and reinstalled for the new door.
In the scheme of things, I know these are minor annoyances - NOT major problems. I have to laugh that what seems like a simple project always involves more time and effort than what I originally think it will but the final result when all is said and done makes me wonder why it took me so long in the first place to get these things done.
Tonight we are off to see John Michael Montgomery at the Riverspirit Casino and tomorrow we have a wedding to attend so - a busy weekend for us!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Eggs in the Nest!

In the front of our house we have three evergreen trees in decorative planters. It gets so windy here in Oklahoma that sometimes when we come home, the trees are on their sides and we have to stand them upright again. It gets annoying because Doug is allergic to the sap from the trees and the trees with the planters are too heavy and awkward for me to upright by myself. I was just getting ready to move the plants to an in the ground location in the backyard when I noticed a little nest in one of the trees.
I've been watching the nest and the sweet little bird and one day I came home to one tiny blue speckled egg in the sweet little nest. The next day, there were two:

Doug came in this morning while I was getting ready and informed me that there are now THREE eggs in the nest!

I wonder how many more eggs will appear?
And yes, of course we have secured the planters with a bunch of bricks surrounding the bottom. I'm sure the neighbors think we are total white trash but I can't bear the thought of the tree tipping over and losing the eggs. We are supposed to get hit with a major storm this afternoon and I'm hoping and praying the nest won't get disturbed.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Birdsong Frilly Bird Swap

As promised, here are the pictures from the Frilly Bird Swap I participated in this past weekend at Karla's Birdsong Event.
True to form, I had one idea when I started and my bird came out completely different than what I originally planned on. I was stressing that my bird wasn't going to be "good enough" (why do we do that to ourselves?) but I showed Doug and he said it looked just like me so I decided to leave it just the way it was.

This beautiful bird was made by Laurie. Each of hers were a little different but for some reason this one just spoke to me - not only because of the necklace she has but also the sweet flower on her head.

Cami covered her bird with music and vintage wall paper and place her on a wire holder on top of an embellished spool. Love her bling crown!

This beautiful bird was made by Sharon Penney-Morrison. She is covered in beautiful sparkly fabric and buttons on her wings.

Just look at all the color on this bird by Gail Sell. Can you see her sparkle on her feathers and the beautiful roses around her neck?

Karla put her beautiful bird on a pedestal made from an egg in a nest. I never think of things like that!

Our sweet hostess of this swap, Sherry, made two birds for us: a male and a female -aren't they cute? I just love the sweet little roses for the girlie's feet.

Aren't they all just gorgeous? And so different!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

What a wonderful Birdsong weekend!

I had the most wonderful weekend attending Birdsong at Karla's cottage. Karla is such a wonderful hostess attending to every little detail and making each one of us feel right at home. It was an event that felt like a gathering of friends.
We had a great group of incredibly talented women - from the teachers right on down to the students. The classes were awesome - I learned lots of new techniques that I can't wait to try again. I just can't say enough good things about this whole weekend!
The first class was an adorable crepe paper tree taught by Carol Spinski. I need to tweak mine a little and add a few decorations but Carol was just a complete delight. Not only did she teach us the technique for the tree but also showed us how to make a wreath, a corsage and several flowers too. I can't wait to make more of these trees in different colors for upcoming holidays.

Our second class was to make two lampshade/sconce shades taught by Debbie Dusenberry. Debbie supplied us with wire frames, the linen with the vintage pictures and all kinds of embellishments to use on our projects. I only completed one shade and I *may* embellish mine a little more but I really am happy the way my shade turned out. I wish I had taken pictures of some of the more elaborate shades - each one was so different and so beautiful!

Debbie also brought along her beautiful sidekick Pearl.

Lisa McIlvain taught the third class of the weekend. She gave us a loom and supplied us with all kinds of fabrics to use to weave this adorable bag! I love, love, love mine! I still need to add a handle but I just think it turned out so beautiful. (I can say that about my project, right?)

The sample she made had a grapevine handle, and other embellishments as shown here in a picture that I'm using from Karla's blog.

The final class for the weekend was a Nest Banner taught by Karla herself. I finished all my letters but haven't quite made them into a banner just yet. These too, I just love!

I wish I had taken more photos during the event but honestly, I was just enjoying myself too much and trying to take it all in. Be sure to click on all the links and visit the other blogs - you won't be disappointed!
Next post I will show you the bird I made for the frilly bird swap and a picture of the sweet prize I won!