Friday, July 21, 2017

new shabby charlotte doll . . .

This doll was so much fun to make . . . and I love how she turned out.
When I stain my doll bodies . . . I brush them with coffee and put them in the oven on low heat and let the coffee do what it's going to do.  I am not sure what happened to her face . . . I guess she was just meant to be a creepy little doll.  I have a few little things to do with her yet . . . and I will get her listed in my ESTY shop.  
If you like silly . . . and sometimes creepy little dolls take a look. 
She would make a wonderful decoration for Halloween.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Shabby Charlotte Doll - Maurita

 She’s a little dark . . . a little creepy . . . 
. . . and completely lovable.
For sale in my ETSY shop - Clarehelen

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Shabby Charlotte doll - Nova

Meet Nova - I just listed her in my ETSY shop . . . clarehelen 
I like how she looks sitting by the turquoise bottle and planter.

Nova is a simple little doll that makes every day special.
She believes in magic . . . the kind of magic that surrounds all of us if we simply take the time to notice it and to practice it.  The magic of a smile . . . the magic of kindness . . . the magic that you find when you look for the joy in the journey.  She tries to laugh as much as she can, she likes to eat lemon cake for breakfast, and believes in love . . . always.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Summer . . .

Summer means fresh tomatoes from the garden . . . stacks of books to read . . . 
. . . and sunglasses.  
Life is just better when you are wearing sparkly sunglasses.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Paint Night

Jennifer and I were sitting at my table one night . . . and she informed me that she had just signed us up for a paint night.  When she showed me the painting that we would be doing I understood why she decided we needed to go.  This is a busy time of year for me with the school year ending and getting ready for next year.  Also - once school is out we work four 10 hour days, which usually turn into 11 or 12 hour days for me . . . so by the time this night came around I was exhausted and the idea of going someplace at the end of a long work day seemed like more than I wanted to do . . . but how could I pass up painting?  Of course - I ended up having a great time and I am so glad that I went. 
This paint night was by no means instructional . . . in fact we had to hold our hands on our canvases and vow to not say things like,  "I messed up." . . . or "Mine is awful."
We were there to have fun and relax . . . and paint.  I love to paint - so of course I was going to have fun!  As much as I love skeletons . . . I am really not so sure what I am going to do with this painting, but I do have some ideas to turn it into something fun to hang up on Halloween.
A couple hours of painting . . . and a couple of Corona's with salt and lime . . . and the thoughts and any stress that I had from that 10 hour work day were gone. 
Now Jennifer wants to sign us up for another paint night.  

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Shabby Charlotte dolls for sale . . .

 . . . because everyone needs a little blonde voodoo doll!

Ghislaine is a very clever little voodoo doll
and made with hopefully enough magic that she brings a smile to your face. 
She is nearly always happy, somewhat sarcastic, and also very determined. 
When given a job to do . . . she doesn’t quit until it is finished.  Loyal to the end . . . Ghislaine will do whatever she has to do to help the people she cares about. 
 Keep this little doll around to 
remind you that life is too short to let anything or anyone bother you . . .
 I have posted photos of these dolls before - but never got them listed on ETSY shop.
I am trying to get back to doll making . . . so hopefully will have more new dolls listed soon. 
If you interested . . . take a look at my shop - clarehelen
I have fun making these crazy little dolls.
Finn is a high spirited little zombie who loves people way too much to ever think about hurting them.  She tends to get excited very easily and loves to try new things.  She loves sushi and hot coffee with whipped cream and red sprinkles.  She loves to dance . . . pick flowers . . . and simply wander around town seeing what kind of shenanigans she can get into.  Her favorite color is pink, but she loves dressing in red just because it puts her in a good mood. 
You can’t go wrong having this little zombie around . . . she is loyal to the end and loves to include her friends whenever she is out having a good time. 

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

good things today . . .

More origami cranes today . . . this time with Mr. Ford's 4th graders.
I wish I could post a picture of all of the their faces . . . so instead I will go with some of their t-shirts.  I love all the t-shirts I see everyday at school.  I am thinking there may be a photo project there . . . I will have to give that some more thought. 
This group really caught on . . . and were finishing cranes in record time.  

1. Folding paper cranes with Room 11
2. Making smoothies with our Ninja (I love this thing)
3. Fresh zucchini from the garden
4. Someone doing me a big favor . . . going above and beyond
5. My work family - they really are amazing!
6. Coctel de Camarones . . . thank you Jessica!
7. Sleeping baby photo . . . our dear little Avery Rose
8. Coming home . . . 
9. Making some time to paint
10. Finding a boysenberry cobbler on my desk this morning . . . made by my boss

Let her sleep, for when she wakes up
she will move mountains.

Monday, May 29, 2017

finally finished . . .

 I started these blankets ages ago . . . and finally got them finished.  I would work on them for awhile - then get doing something else . . . then get them out again and work on them for while.  I guess some projects are like that.  I think it took my daughter-in-law bringing her t-shirts over to finally get me moving to finish all three of them.  I think Jake has all of his baseball t-shirts somewhere also . . . so I may have to make another one.  :)  
It feels good to have them finished!  
 It dawned on me while I was making Kasey's quilt . . . that I probably watched her cheer all those years ago - when Jake's team played against her high school.  
 Some of these t-shirts are sort of old . . . especially on Luke's blanket. 
I think some of those he wore in Jr. High.
Such a simple way to re-purpose old t-shirts.   

Saturday, May 27, 2017

4th graders make me happy . . .

Every year I fold origami cranes with the 4th graders at the school where I work.
Every year I enjoy it a little bit more.  I think 4th graders are wonderful!
You can see more of their paper cranes here.  I started my paper crane project a few years ago . . . not intending for it to take me so long - but I am still at it. I am pretty sure I have folded over 1000 cranes outside of the ones I have folded for my project . . . and usually after I do this with the 4th graders - some of the kids go "crane crazy" for awhile . . . so I will probably be sitting with some of them at lunch recess folding more.  

Thursday, May 25, 2017

always reading . . .

"So many books, so little time."
~ Frank Zappa
I really need more hours in every day!  So I can read . . . and paint . . . and sew . . . and play . . . and take care of all the ideas whirling around in my head.  So I try to make the most of my time each day.  It is hard for me to sit and just do nothing - so there is always a book and journal in my purse to keep me occupied while I am in the car or waiting for an appointment.
I cannot a imagine my life without reading.
 I have had several people try to convince me to switch to reading on a Kindle.
I just can't seem to bring myself to do that.  There is something about the feel and smell of a book . . . turning the pages . . . taking pictures of your stack of books you want to read . . .  and bookshelves packed full of stories and magic.
What are you reading?

"Reading is like thinking, like praying, like talking to a friend, like expressing your ideas, like listening to other people's ideas, like listening to music, like looking at the view, like taking a walk on the beach."  ~ Robert Bolano, 2666

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Today I choose JOY!

Challenges are what makes life interesting ~
Overcoming them is what makes it meaningful.

I have been away from here for too long.
It hasn't been by choice . . . life keeps getting in the way.
But along with life getting in the way . . . . life is also giving me plenty to enjoy and celebrate.
I refuse to let life's challenges get the better of me.  I look at these beautiful children and know for sure that life is precious and wonderful . . . and meant to be lived with joy and passion.
Life doesn't always make that easy . . . but attitude makes that possible.
Today I choose JOY!

Monday, May 1, 2017

happy busy . . .

I am reading . . . and making things . . . and painting little girls nails . . . and painting . . . and planting flowers and a few vegetables . . . I am just not documenting any of it very well. 
I am hoping to be better about that . . . but for now I am just enjoying being "happy busy".

I am reading etta and otto and russell and james.  A friend recommended it to me and so far I am really enjoying it.  I bought six new books to read last week . . . I've been in that sort of mood - two down . . . four more to go.
I am also working on some t-shirt quilts that I started ages ago.  I decided that since I was in the mood to finish them that I would also make one for my daughter-in-law with some t-shirts she had kept.  So fun and easy to make . . . I am not sure why it has taken me so long to finish them.  It will feel good to get them done and start on something new.
Have a wonderful day . . . 
Find JOY in the small stuff! (like this wonderful tin full of pins)

Friday, April 21, 2017

not a post about onesies . . .

This was supposed to be a post with pictures of cute onesies that I appliqued for my new granddaughter Avery . . . with matching hair bands, but I actually forgot to take pictures of them.  How do I forgot to take pictures of anything????  I am still trying to figure that one out.  Plus I didn't even realize that I hadn't taken pictures of them for a couple of days.  What is with me?  I am pretty sure I must have been thinking only about giving them to her . . . and more importantly - just excited to go see her.  So maybe I will get pictures of them later . . . if not - they turned out really cute and I am hoping to make some more.  So instead . . . you get pictures of my Turmeric Tea . . .  or Turmeric Milk may be a more accurate description.  I have made something similar before, but I really like this recipe and having been drinking it consistently.  Turmeric is supposed to help with inflammation as well as having other health benefits.  How much it helps??? - but it is worth a try.
Plus this is just fun to make every night.  
Richard commented that I was mixing up some witches brew . . . maybe it was the moon and star spoon that gave him that idea.  (The spoon belonged to my grandma . . . and I love using it.) 
 He did agree though that this tastes pretty good.  
You start out by making a turmeric paste . . . that keeps in the refrigerator up to two weeks.
Someone else commented while looking in my refrigerator . . . that it does look like something else.  But we won't go there . . . . because who would keep a jar of that in their refrigerator?  :)
Paste Recipe
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup turmeric
Simmer on low 7-10 minutes.
Store in glass container in refrigerator.  Will keep up to two weeks.
Turmeric Mild Recipe:
2 cups coconut milk
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. coconut oil
1 tsp. - 1 Tbsp. turmeric paste
1 tsp. chopped fresh ginger
4-6 peppercorns
1 pinch stevia
Whisk ingredients together in sauce pan over low heat.
Simmer for 10 minutes - stirring occasionally.
Strain.  Top with cinnamon.

The coconut milk tends to make this a little thick.  I have found that I like it better if I use a little less coconut milk and add a little water.  (1 1/2 cup coconut milk and 1/2 cup water)
Watch out spilling this stuff . . . it turns everything yellow and I would advise using glass bowls not plastic ones . . . just so they don't stain.  
No onesie pictures . . . but here is one of our new baby girl.
She is already a month old. 
Dream big little girl . . .