Realize

I guess I didn’t realize what writing my own blog would entail, feel like, and require. As I’ve said before, I’m a freelance writer, so it’s easy enough for me to write blogs for someone else. But making my five-day-a-week blog fun and interesting uses a different part of my brain and comes from a unique place in my heart.

If I were reading this blog right now, I would tell the writer to calm down, have fun, and stop stressing. And that’s not bad advice. But I want to make sure that taking this project on will help other people and give me a platform to give a little something back to my readers.

I also did not realize five years ago how much fun it is to be a maker. Lucky for me, I have a retired contractor for a husband, and he came with all the tools and experience of 40 years in the business of building and remodeling houses. Now that we’re both retired, I have every DIY-er’s dream workshop. No, I haven’t come close to the mastery my husband has for making just about anything. But, boy, do I have fun using his equipment and learning from him!

So here’s my latest “made item,” and I hope it will inspire you to try putting something similar together yourself. This time, I changed the bottle type, changed the number of bottles, and made the handles from rope. Take a look:

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Simple, but useful as a centerpiece or flower holder, right?

So, happy making and here’s wishing you some realizations of your own!

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I Think that I Shall Never See…

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Fern Springs Farm

This is the beginning of a poem by Joyce Kilmer, published in the Poetry magazine in 1913, titled “Trees.” The end of the phrase that I used for my post is completed with these words: “a poem lovely as a tree.”

Reading it again today took me back to a third grade assignment my class was given to memorize the poem and then recite it to our teacher. I can even recall that she smelled like sweet flowers.

The poem was set to music in 1922 by Oscar Rasbach, and can be heard on YouTube being sung by Bob McGrath, famous for being  Bob Johnson on Sesame Street. But I digress.

I never forgot the poem or the song, which I sang in junior high chorus. And now, I live on a small six-acre former dairy and chicken farm. Fortunately, since I love to make things, I have an abundance of limbs, stumps, branches, weathered wood, and twigs to keep me busy all the time.

But more than having a plethora of crafting materials at my disposal, I have the great privilege of watching the seasons come and go by enjoying the changes in the trees around me. I am blessed to have a front row seat for observing the shadows and light as they slowly form and reform through the year.

It is a gift I try to appreciate to its fullest every minute. Here’s wishing you many days in the company of trees.

 

I Love Bottles

Maybe you’ve seen the advertisement on television during which Oprah Winfrey looks straight into the camera and says in an impressively sincere and thoroughly dramatic manner:

“I love bread!”

Her point was that if a person is using the Weight Watchers’ diet system, he or she can and may have bread, as Oprah put it:

“Every single day!”

Well, that would certainly make me want to use the WW plan ’cause I certainly love bread too. But what I really want to talk about today is the fact that I really, really love bottles. Maybe this is true because I love to recycle items by using them in a different way than they would normally be used. Could be because they are usually free or can be found in junk stores at very affordable prices.

Whatever the reason, I never met a bottle I didn’t like, as Will Rogers said (only he said he’d never met a man he didn’t like). I have an entire Pinterest page devoted solely to bottles and things that can be done with them.

The project using bottles I want to share with you today is simple, but special, in my opinion. The beauty of it is that it can be done in many different styles and is decorative and utilitarian, all at the same time.

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So, I found this wire basket, and since it was forest green, I painted it glossy back, thinking that would make it look a bit more farmhouse/industrial. The bottles were from a crazy purchase my husband made a few years ago – a crate of Mexican lemon seltzer. I’ve used the bottles for party punch, vases, and, yes, sometimes dust-catchers, probably because of their simple shape and their perfect size (the lemon drink – not so much).