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Monthly Archives: July 2015

Adding More Projects – Uh Oh…

If you’ve been coming around lately, you know I’ve gotten hooked on mosaics and have been working on my big “F” monogram off and on for weeks and enjoying every minute of it.

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The face of it is all grouted, but I still have to do the sides and glue on a few dimensional embellishments that add a lot to it. I’ve laid it out and just LOVE how it looks! Can hardly for you to see it.

But, before I’ve even finished it, I’m making plans for my next projects. I’d planned to graduate to some decorative pieces for my garden, but first, I have a few more monograms to do. My daughter, daughter-in-law, and my two oldest granddaughters have put in requests for their own (well, actually my daughter-in-law wants mine, but I don’t want to part with it, so I’m making her one of her own!)

So, I’ve purchased their bases, (available at Hobby Lobby for $12.99, but you can use your 40% off coupon for it…)

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…and started collecting up plates to smash up, and picking up beads and other embellishments as they go on sale. Pieces this large can get pretty expensive if you’re having to pay full price for everything.

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They are so, so much fun to make, but definitely a labor of love.

 

 

Sunriver Through a Tattered Lens

Most of the time when we were in Sunriver and the surrounding area, I had a camera around my neck. Big surprise, huh? And, as usual, I took all the expected photos of us, the landscapes, etc. And then I took some of the more unusual photos – the things that captured my attention that a lot of people wouldn’t think to click on, or wouldn’t think they’d want to remember.

Those are the photos that I call “Through a Tattered Lens.” I took fewer photos this trip than I normally do – only about 500 over 3 weeks. I was trying to figure out why, when it struck me that we were usually on bicycles, which makes photography a little more challenging.

So. Thanks for stopping by, and I hope you’ll enjoy what my crazy eye found interesting!

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A common site around the village

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Much less common!

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I’m guessing hundreds of thousands of tadpoles!

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As we were packing up and discussing what a great trip it had been, the consensus was it’s even more fun than Maui, if you can believe that!

So, looks like we’ll be back again next summer. Sorry, Maui. You’ve been replaced. At least for one year. After that I’ll be lobbying on your behalf!

Sunriver, Oregon 2015

Well, when we left on vacation I had every intention of continuing to blog nearly every day. After all, I’ve had wonderful internet connection, and plenty to blog about. But it’s been one thing after another.

Either I didn’t have a photo I needed to help tell the story…

Wait. You know what? I have excuses, but the bottom line is, I had other things I wanted to do, so I did them instead. I DID miss you guys, and I talked to you a lot in my head. I just couldn’t seem to get my thoughts on to the computer.

So. Last day of vacation, and I’m back. I have lots to catch you up on, and after a few hours of feeling a little pissy that it’s time to go home, I’m actually starting to get just a little excited about getting home and getting back into the swing of things!

SO!

For those of you who don’t know, we’ve been vacationing in Sunriver,  just south of Bend in central Oregon for the last three weeks. It’s a resort with a blend of year ’round residents and vacation homes/condos and a lodge or two. There are 33 miles of walking/bicycling trails, a marina, airport, stables, aquatic park, a nature center and observatory, and a shopping village. The Deschutes River runs right through it.

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We used to come here with our two kids when they were children, and have many fond memories of the area, and were anxious to come again with their kids. It’s hard to believe it’s been over 25 years since we were last here! We’d planned on it being all ten of us, but life happens, and it ended up to be a party of 5 for all but a few days, when our son-in-law joined us.

Back in the day we rented a small condo, but this time we got a large house, big enough for all of us with plenty of room to keep from being on top of each other all the time.

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It is nicely appointed with lots of bikes to choose from, passes to the aquatic park, and everything we could possible need in the kitchen. We brought lots of stuff we didn’t need to bring. We’re taking notes for next time!

The 1st 10 days we had nice mornings and thunderstorms every afternoon, and from then on the weather was perfect. We had a nice range of activities ranging from bike rides and walks to white water rafting, paddle boarding, shopping, eating, hiking, playing games, watching movies, and of course (much to the kids displeasure) workbooks and journals. And of course there was a trip to the Deschutes Brewery and Atlas Cider Co. You have to check out where your adult beverages are coming from! Mr. Tattered and the daughter are fans of Black Butte Porter, and I (well, ADORE is probably too strong of a word…) am quite fond of blackberry cider. One of our last stops was to stock up on both. I mean, who knows how long it will be before we get to partake again!

Rather than a blow by blow of everything we did, I’ll show you a few pictures to give you a flavor of the area. Enjoy!

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It’s really a beautiful area, and we barely scratched the surface of all there is to do. We’re already looking forward to our next visit!

Woohoo! It’s Grout Time!

We headed into town yet again, and THIS time headed straight for the thrift shop to find the last piece of pottery I need for my big “F”. I was afraid it would never get to the top of the list, but it finally did. And I hit the motherlode. I found several plates and other ceramic pieces that were cheap enough that I won’t feel terrible smashing them to smithereens. AND, I actually picked up a few pieces for future projects!

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The bowl I thought would work turned out to be too bright, but a plate I’d picked up with no specific thing in mind, was just right. A few more hours of smashing and cutting and gluing, and a night of drying, and I was ready to grout.

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And the fear set in. What if, after all these hours of adhering tiles and embellishments, I wreck it? Well. I didn’t really have a choice. I had to move ahead, or else relegate the whole project to the pile of unfinished projects, and I wasn’t about to let that that happen. So, I put on my big girl panties and dove in.

I’d watched a youtube video on doing mosaics (so that made me an expert!) but I quickly figured out that the spaces between my tiles would be too hard to fill using the traditional method. I found a plastic squeeze bottle, made up a thinned version of the grout, poured it in, and gently squeezed it into the spaces. And it worked! Real quickly I could see how the finished project was going to look and I was thrilled!

A few hours over 2 days and the majority of the top surface is done, just a few touch ups remain, and then the sides.

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I thought the grouting was going to go even more slowly than sticking the tiles on, but it’s really going pretty quickly. And the grout seems to be pretty forgiving. If I get too much on and it bleeds onto the tiles, it wipes off easily, and if I don’t get enough, I can come back and fill in later. Even little bubbles are pretty easy to work with.

I can hardly wait to finish the grout and glue the dimensional elements on. It’s going to be BEAUTIFUL!!!

And lest you think I was worrying about what my next mosaic project would be, my daughter and eldest granddaughters have let it be known they would not be opposed to owning a Gaga original, so we’ve begun shopping for cool beads already! This is NOT part of the “ignite” plan!

 

 

What July Reset?

Oh, yeah. I was going to do a post on a July reset, which means I was supposed to actually DO a July reset. Would you be surprised to learn I haven’t? No? Ahhhh, you know me well.

I thought about it, really I did.

It seemed like such a good idea. July being the new (or second) January, and a chance to reset the year, or at least check in to see if you NEED to do a reset. And boy do I! Badly. But it turns out that July wasn’t such a good month to attempt it.

I had all the kiddles the 1st two days, and the evenings were spent trying to get stuff gathered up for vacation. Then on the 3rd we left, and here I am being a bum in God’s country…

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Maybe when the newness of being footloose and fancy free wears off, I’ll spend a little time thinking about all the different things I need to do to get back on track.

But for now, I don’t think so.

I’m having too much fun working on my “F.”

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And it doesn’t hurt that I have a little assistant.

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I’m nearly done with the glueing part. I think putting the grout on is going to be a monumental task, but I’m looking forward to it.

I’m also acting as a cheerleader for getting the girls working on their projects. Hannah is learning to doodle, so I got her a couple of zen-tangle books for inspiration.

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The girls are doing journals and Hannah is using the zen-tangle technique on her cover.

Bea is doing a more traditional design.

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They’re also working on their “flat” friends…

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Stay tuned to see their adventures!

Yeah, I’m thinking I have more important things to do now than resetting anything! Heeheehee!

 

Where is Home?

We spent roughly 25-30 years of our 43 year married life living in Mt. Shasta. I know, roughly? Why don’t I know exactly? We were running around back and forth for a few years, so it’s not black and white. At any rate, we spent most of our grown up lives there, raised our family, made what will be lifelong friends, and still own a home there, so even though we haven’t live there for nearly ten years, it should still be a strong contender for “home.”

So now we’re up in Mt. Shasta for a couple of days, on our way to vacation in Sunriver, Oregon.

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The 4th of July is a big deal here. You’ve heard the saying “All hearts come home for Christmas?” Well, here it’s “All hearts come home for the 4th of July.”

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It’s a small town. A REALLY small town. Home to the biggest little footrace around, a totally small town parade, pretty decent fireworks over the lake, lots of kids coming home for class reunions, and really, just to visit, its numbers swell over this weekend.

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We don’t make it back every year, but fairly often. A piece of my heart will always be here.

But the truth is, it doesn’t feel like home any more.

We have family friends renting our house, so we stay in a hotel, although our daughter and grandkids stayed with them, and we spent the 4th there visiting.

We’d completely remodeled the house right before leaving, so we never really got used to the new look.  And of course, with their furniture and changes they’ve made to the backyard, it’s quite different. Maybe if it was still our vacation home, I would feel differently.

There are tons of memories. If I were to go our in the back yard and lie on a lounge chair and just look up at the trees and the sky, I’d probably start bawling (so I didn’t!)

But it’s not home any more.

Nor is Southern California where both Mr. Tattered and I were born and raised and where we met and married.

No, home is Folsom, where we live now. And fortunately, that is where our kids live, too.

We don’t have a LOT of history there yet. We’re up to ten years now, so we’re getting there. God willin’ and the crik don’t rise, we might end up living there longer than anywhere else. But since it isn’t the longevity that makes it home,  I started wondering what exactly DOES make a place home?

And for me, the best answer is “Home is where Mr. Tattered is,” and I’m very fortunate my family is there, too.

Do you have deep roots that keep a place other than where you live now feeling like home?

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