Monday, March 2, 2015

Doing Whatever We Can, When and Where We Can

I was thinking today about some current sayings, like “bloom where you’re planted,” and “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” They aren’t the same but they are similar. In both cases, we are encouraged to do what we can, when and where we can.

Too often, we try to match what others are doing to help in this world. Sometimes that takes us beyond our own scope and limits.

I recently declined an obligation I almost undertook. I realized that it was not right for me at this time. Taking on that particular responsibility would have stressed me out. That, in turn, would have affected the charity crafting group I started almost six years ago. We are small but we have made and given away almost 1,000 items to local needy. The stress might also have affected the quality of the volunteer effort I put into our senior mobile home park’s monthly newsletter. I have been doing that for a dozen years now. In both those cases, nobody else is willing or able to step in and take over. But the obligation I did not take on can easily be handled by several other people. That, in the end, was how I weighed the pro’s and con’s and made my decision. 

In the end, we each have skills and abilities and strengths to offer, even though sometimes we do not realize we are so blessed.

This made me remember my sister’s case. 

My little sis (11 mos younger than me) had to go into long-term care in '05 at age 65. For 4 years her "world" was a bed and a bedside rolling table in a room with 2 others. She always felt that she could no longer help anyone, yet this kid prayed, often. One of her many medical issues was Parkinsons. When her handwriting was almost undreadable, she'd send me (I was in NV and she was in CA) her "list" of people she prayed for, and I'd type it and print it on my printer, onto a 3x5 card, and send it back. Yet, her prayers seemed to have more weight with Him than those of others, including myself. When Betty prayed for something, it was often heard. She didn't realize how she was doing what only she could do - she had to time and focus on prayer when most of us are rushing through our days and nights and barely giving prayer a thought. She passed on in '09 but I'll never forget that about her.

So, I will not try to compete with others for the chance to help in the exact same way they help. I will consider what I can do. Then I will try to do that to the best, the very best, of my own ability.

Father, thank you so much for the skills and abilities you have carefully and lovingly led me to acquire and learn. I am grateful that you trust me to use them for your work. Bless me with any and all grace I need to fulfill your expectations.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Gotta Get Moving Forward Now

Wednesday, my lifting/bending restrictions from the cataract surgeries, were finally gone. 

However, I couldn’t get going on the projects that have piled up in here because I was in the middle of my monthly newsletter. That’s the one I do for our senior mobile home park. I’ve done it since May of 2003, on a volunteer basis. Where on earth does the time go? I can’t believe it’s been that long.

Anyhow, tomorrow I deliver one of the routes in here, to about 50 of our homes, to their porch railings. After that, I must get going.

I’ve pretty much depleted my stash of frozen crockpot meals, so I’ve got to make a bunch of those.
And I have our Spring Park-Wide Yard Sale coming up, the 2nd weekend in April. That’s barely six weeks away. That means steady de-cluttering and organizing. 

Our Friday morning charity crafters have been steadily accumulating hats, gloves, scarves (for the homeless), baby blankies, booties and jackets (for moms in need), and lap throws and shawls (for a local hospice). I wasn’t allowed to lift those bags for a few weeks, but now it’s time to sort and pack and distribute these things.

Yep, it’s time to get moving...  

Monday, February 23, 2015

Charity Crafting Lap Throw Finished

Charity Baby Blankie - finished
 Back on the 15th, I posted about the current charity crafting project I was crocheting (see this link).

This past weekend, I finished it. I had originally planned to put this one in the stash for the hospice items. I have 3 piles: homeless, babies, and hospice.

Charity Baby Blankie - in progress
But as you can easily see, this one just cries out to cover a little baby whose mom needs some extras for the little one. I do like how it turned out.

There is one for the hospice, in progress, that I am working at my Friday morning sessions with the other gals. That one is in shades of tan, gold, white, and similar colors.

This diagonal stitch is a really great one for when we are making something and using up small amounts of colors. It makes something that could be just “home made” look really appealing.  

Opera and Other Stuff

Because I disconnected from contract TV, and because I am on an analog-to-digital converter box, indoor-antenna setup, my TV viewing choices have changed in the past few months. 

On Sunday morning, I was surfing to find out which channels were coming in best right then. I ended up watching a PBS showing of Carmen. I didn’t plan to watch that. I’ve never, ever watched, or went to, an opera. 

When I was young, our family could never have afforded to go. Later, it just never crossed my path. So I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this presentation.

In fact, I was glued to the set for the whole production. With just a few commercials and just as few intermissions, time stood still. 

Thankfully, I was at least somewhat productive. I was crocheting something for a cyber-friend of mine. And, also, thankfully, it was a pattern I knew by heart so it didn’t matter that I hated tearing my eyes away from the screen to look down.

With my new eyes (post-cataract eyes), I had no trouble reading the English translation subtitles on the screen.

Yep, it was a very enjoyable morning - wonder what’s on next week? 

Rustic Crocheted Wall Crosses

Well, I just shipped off, today, an order for three of my crocheted Rustic Wall Crosses. I’ve been putting off making some more, but I guess I’d better get busy on that, among other things. When you’re your own boss, you’ve got to be tough on yourself. I’m not very good at that. 

I did finally take a photo of the last one I made, a soft green one with a silver center core. And I finally put it in the shop. 

But I do need to look at my cotton worsted yarn and make up a batch this weekend or sooner.

I also need to make some new hanging mini-signs - a friend asked for a specific design over the holidays and I meant to make some up for the shop. Once again, I allowed life to get in the way.

It’s time for me to get tough on my employees!