Sunday, January 15, 2017

Where I Belong

When you move as often as we have over the past twelve years, you start to wish that someone would develop an app to make the process so much easier. Just plug in your parameters and preferences, and voila, you would have an instant list telling you exactly where you belong.

If only it were that easy.

Instead, we throw arrows at maps and charts and hope for the best. And then I question myself incessantly.

Do we belong in this neighborhood or that neighborhood?

Does Sam belong in this school or that one?

Do we belong in this church or that church?

Should I join this committee, or should I belong to this group instead?

Should I get a job here, or would I rather work there?

Someone, please, tell me where I belong?

When I was a child, my mother taught me this German prayer.

"Ich bin klein (I am small)
Mein herz ist rein (my heart is clean)
Soll neimand drin wohnen (and I belong)
Als Jesus allein." (to Jesus alone)

Such a sweet, powerful statement of faith.

In Mark 9:41, Jesus spells it out for me. You belong to Christ.

Plain and simple.

And He goes on to say that even small acts of love will have big impact, simply because we belong to Him.

I am small, my heart is clean, and I belong to Jesus alone.


Saturday, January 14, 2017

Lizzie Kate Winter Cottage Boxer

The irony is not lost on me. I am stitching a cabin while in the full throes of cabin fever.

Funny, isn't it?

It's this darn holiday cold that will not go away. I finally went to the doctor, and I officially have bronchitis. Oh joy! I'm on antibiotics in the hopes that I can kick this nasty cough to the curb.

In the meantime, I am making myself do stuff at home so that I won't go bonkers. Dinner is in the crock pot, cookie dough brownies (for the boys) are in the oven, and healthy coconut chocolate chewies are in the freezer for me.

I'm going to get some card making accomplished today. In the meantime, I am stitching this project.

I have stitched Autumn, Spring, and Summer in this series. I figure it's time to finish Winter. After all, there are many many many (okay, maybe too many manys?) weeks of winter yet to come.

Blessings on your weekend, cafe friends!

Thursday, January 12, 2017


This card...

...started out as this card:


I just did not like it.

For starters, I picked the wrong purple, going by the color of the ink pad lid (PTI Plum Pudding, you deceive me every time!) and not testing it first.

And I just didn't like the composition and layout.

Lucky for me, do-overs are totally allowed in paper crafting!

So I removed a few things, and cut off a few things, and added a few new things, which brought the card to this:

Same stamped panel, but with a new layout that made me happy.

And let's face it, if we don't like it, we probably will never mail it. Am I right?

{Today's Brew: Folk Art Inchies stamps (Inkadinkadoo), Bird stamp from PTI, sentiment from PTI,  PTI inks, PTI card stock, PTI paper, amuse twinkle rhinestones}

Don't you love do-overs? And just think: God gives us do-overs every morning! A fresh start. A clean slate. A chance to say "This is the day the Lord has made! I will rejoice and be glad in it!"

Gladness, cafe friends!

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Fooling Around With Folk Art

I snuck down to the studio to get some craft time yesterday. I just needed to play and get creative and recharge for a few minutes.

I've been inspired by folk art lately. I just love its simplicity of design and color. I remembered this Folk Art stamp set from Inkadinkadoo, and decided to play with it. I cut a few 1 1/4 inch squares, stamped on each one, and then came up with a pattern for adhering to the card front. It gives a sort of patchwork quilt quality to the card, don't you think?

{Today's Brew: Folk Art stamps (Inkadinkadoo), PTI card stock and ink, SU polka ribbon}

Thanks for visiting the cafe today!

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Winter Welcome

Some years, I am anxious to get all the Christmas taken down and get the house cleared out again. But this year, I'm going about it a little slower. Perhaps that's because I'm embracing Hygge this winter. So instead of taking all the lights and greenery down outside, I've decided to add a few snow men to the greenery and call it "winter decorations".

I think when you live in the Midwest, you have to embrace all the seasons. No sense in fighting can last a long time up north!

Blankets and pillows, warm coffee and a pastry, good books and stitching projects. Just a few of my favorite ways to say "Welcome, Winter!"

Friday, January 6, 2017

A Good Day

My sister, Tina, retired last week! Woo hoo! After more than twenty plus years in nursing, she is ready to have her days all to herself. And Tina is super talented...a quilter, a seamstress, you name it. She does it. I have no doubt her days ahead will be filled with creativity!

I painted a sky background for this floating bunny, then colored the other images with COPIC markers. I used a Sharpie to make a frame around the stamped images.

{Today's Brew: stamps from Mama Elephant, Kuretake Gansai Tambi watercolors, Memories ink, COPIC markers, Sharpie}

Time to celebrate!

Thursday, January 5, 2017


Do you hygge?

Hygge (pronounced hue-guh)  is a Danish term that often defies definition.

For starters, it's a feeling of coziness and warmth. It is often connected with winter, but can actually be experienced all year long.

Hygge is the practice of living in the moment, and making that moment warm and cozy and friendly.

In the Midwest, we refer to this time of year as our winter hibernation. And in many ways, that is also what hygge is all about. The days are short and the nights are long. Time to light some candles, stoke the fire, and snuggle in with a warm beverage.

This cold of mine had me feeling down yesterday. I had to snap myself out of it and remind myself that this year we are going to hygge. We are not going to rush through the season, trying to survive until spring. Nope. This year, we are going to embrace the season for the wonderful opportunity that it gives us to slow down and pause.

I brewed a cup of tea with honey (for this cough), dimmed the lights, lit the candles, and burrowed in under a warm furry blanket with an inspirational book.

It helps to have a warm furry someone to snuggle with, too.

I spoke to my mom about this Danish concept of hygge. When I started to describe it, she said "Oh! You mean 'gemutlichkeit!' "

Apparently, the Germans have been practicing their own version of cozy cheerfulness all along.

It is very cold today, but I'm going to bundle up anyway. Time to get out of the house and find a warm and cozy cafe where I can hygge.

Gemutlichkeit. Not to be confused with Gesundheit.

God bless you!