Monday, September 27, 2010

Fabric Pumpkin Tutorial

This is my first tutorial so please forgive any neophyte mistakes.

What you will need:
  • fabric (I think prints look best.)
  • scissors
  • needle & thread
  • rice
  • fiber-fill
  • twig
  • hot glue gun (a girl's BEST friend)
  • silk leaf (autumnal colors of course)
  • large plate

Step 1
Lay plate on fabric and cut about 1" from edge. (This is a 12" serving plate, resulting in a 14" circle.)

Step 2 

Sew a loose running stitch 1/2" from edge of fabric. Leave needle attached and gather fabric to form a bowl. (I know I should have used a dark thread for the tutorial, but I am going to keep this pumpkin and I didn't want to have to sew it twice.)

Step 3  
 Pour a 1/2 cup of rice into bowl.

Step 4 
 Add fiber-fill.

Step 5
Hot glue twig (at an angle looks FAB) and cinch opening.
Sew closed. Make sure to hide your knot in a fold.

 Step 6
Glue silk leaf to stem or at the base of the stem where
it meets the pumpkin. I added a coil of green
florist wire to up the cute factor.

They are so easy to make, so you could have a whole patch of pumpkins in no time.

Hint: If you are using a thick fabric you will need to make your stitches long (farther apart). Otherwise you will end up with a LARGE opening after you've cinched it together. The opening will be better suited for a branch rather than a twig.

Bonus Hint: If you have an actual pumpkin stem that would be the BEST THING EVER! 

I hope you have as much fun making a patch of pumpkins as I did.

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Pumpkin Patch

My friend Heather sent a link for adorable pumpkins made from coffee filters. You can find the link here. The pumpkins are quite cute, but rather small. I think I will make them as place card holders for Thanksgiving dinner. Won't that be cute!

I started thinking about all the fabric I have in storage, and decided to go shopping through my own goodies. I just love that kind of shopping - it's FREE!

The large pumpkins are made from a circle with a 20" diameter. The small pumpkins are made from a circle with a 14" diameter. And there was total cheating with the circle cutting. I took the face off an oscillating fan, laid it on my fabric and cut about an inch away from the edge, ending up with a 20" circle.

The small circles were cut using the same method above but with a large serving plate. You get an idea of the size you end with if you look at the pumpkin sitting atop the teacup.

If you want I can take pictures of the next pumpkin in process and post a tutorial. That would be so exciting. It would be my first tutorial!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

I Can Change it to T-A-U-M-A

I like my name. Really like it.

That hasn’t always been the case. I remember slamming the door after I had gotten home from the 2nd grade and yelling to my mother, “You just had to name me Tauna!”

You see, almost everyone in my class had their names printed on their stuff. All kinds of stuff –pencils, notebooks, bracelets, stuffed animals.

Guess who has NEVER found her name printed on mass-produced products?

Now I don’t care if I can’t find my name on a key chain. I like having a unique name. However,
 my name is proof that people do not listen to one another.

Here is a sampling of some of the names I’ve been called after being asked my name.

Shauna, Fauna, Lana, Hauna, Hannah, Tonya, Tanya, Taxna (I really think that person was drunk), Tuna, Tanna, Taupa, Tronna, Trina, and Connie (this one happens a lot!).

When giving my name for an official reason I first pronounce then spell my name. Even that doesn’t help. Nine times out of 10 people will spell my name however they feel like it. Unfortunately, that doesn’t cut it when the government is concerned. I’ve had to fight to get my name spelled correctly on checks and my first passport. Um, “little things” like that matter.

Today, I had to visit another government office and found myself on the “Tauna” merry-go-round. It’s a fun little ride in which you pronounce & spell, pronounce & spell, and pronounce & spell.

Here’s how it went.

Lady at Anonymous office: "How do you spell your name?"
Me: "T-A-U-N-A" (Said v e r y slowly.)
LAAO: "T-O-N..."
Me: "No. T like Thomas, A like apple, U like umbrella, N like Nancy, A like apple
LAAO: "Well I can't find you in our system."
Me: "How are you spelling it?"
Me: "Would you mind putting my name in your system?" (I was laughing, but she wasn’t.)
LAAO: "What's your name?" (I spelled it TWO more times.)
LAAO: "What's your address?" (I gave her the information.)
LAAO: "I found it, but someone spelled your name wrong in our computer. That's why I couldn't find you."
Me: "How was it spelled in the computer?"
LAAO: "It’s spelled T-A-U-N-A, but I can change it to T-A-U-M-A."
Me: "No, no, let's leave it the way it is. I think it will be easier if I start spelling my name T-A-U-N-A."

I finally convinced her that T-A-U-N-A was correct, but I may find out next year that I'm really Tauma.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Fresh Tears for Worn Memories

The worst day of my life, to date, happened 17 years ago. I lost someone dear to me, and my heart stopped beating.

Not the physical heart that supplies life giving blood. It was my loving heart that renders and receives life dependent commitment. For a while I felt numb. Heavy. I thought my chest would collapse from the pressure. I begged God for sleep so I wouldn't have to feel the vacuous pit that engulfed me. Everything was black.

Soon my heart began to drum with such raw force I thought I would collapse.

But I didn't.

It pounded so hard I felt bruised inside- tender and so fragile. My heart and my mind wanted to escape.

But I couldn't.

Someone was holding me in place. Holding my heart. Hiding me in the still blackness. Clutching the pain that I couldn't contain as it seeped from me.

How could I have endured without Him? What would have become of me? How could I have survived without my Jesus?

And never did I ask, "Why?" I'm not sure how that is. Maybe He shushed my heart with His love to the point of understanding. Not understanding why such things happen, but understanding that He is in control of all things.

It has taken 17 years for me to attempt words about what that day was to me. My heart has healed. Well, mostly. There will always be some acreage dedicated to the love and memory of Andy.

I told my sweet friend Jennifer that as I am now in my 40s, I wonder if I will ever have the impact on this world that Andy had in his 22 years here. Oh what a heart that boy had. And wise beyond his days. It was always amusing to him that men, many years his senior, often sought him out for coffee and study time. He was so in love with Jesus. His faith was infectious. If you didn't know Jesus before Andy said hello, you had been introduced to Him by the time Andy said goodbye.

He was my iron, and he kept me sharp. He was my encourager, and he made me try harder. He was my clown, and he made me LAUGH! He was my friend, and he made me love.

I miss Andy, and I'm jealous of him. He has met our LORD face to face. Nothing compares to that. And truth be told, I'm a little jealous of God too. He has our Andy.

Friday, September 3, 2010

This Day Keeps Getting Better

I haven't even delved into my quiet time of  Bible study and meditation, but God is already speaking! I love it when He does that.


So far He has encouraged me with His word and several words from others. I am bathed in love and hope.

Then, as if my day wasn't already beautiful despite SEVERAL things, He added another sparkle! Remember a post from a few weeks ago titled I Can't Be Bothered? Well I think I may be winning that person over! And by I, I mean God. The best part is that I'm not trying to win said someone over. I have just been acting the same.

Isn't God FAB!

This person has extended an invitation to teach me something I have long wanted to learn. There could be some sweet bonding time in our future.
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