Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Dancing by the Light of the Moon...

"On with the dance! Let joy be unconfined;
No sleep til morn, when Youth and Pleasure meet
To chase the glowing hours with flying feet."

~George Gordon, Lord Byron, Childe Harold's Pilgrimage~
In the inky dark of night,
She danced in the garden in bare foot delight.It was in these pre-dawn hours,
That she twirled among leaves and flowers.
The hem of her gown was ripped and torn,
Upon the last blushing roses thorn.
Her wrap became the veil of a fairy bride,
As she pretended in her moonlight glide.All her finery was getting soiled,
But her fun this night was not to be spoiled.She tilted her head so the moon and stars illumined her ornate hair,
While she gazed at her reflection in the pond, without worry or care.Tonight her WISH, her dream had come true,
Guess what it is, I leave the ending to you!I can't wait to read your creative answers!

I have been working on a process of making a slightly dimensional soft sculpted version of a paper doll and La Belle here is the result. It was a bit like being a mad scientist trying various processes and sculpting until I had one that was complete and looked right. I want to continue to play with the process to see if I can get more depth to the form.

La Belle is mounted to a handmade background of brownish taupe tissue paper and paint. I used a white pearl paint and layers of a rich cream and burnt umber to mottle the background. The white paint gives hints of shimmer. Her clothing is made from a coffee filter, bits of tulle, vintage lace with natural age spots, and a snip of vintage silk for her bodice. Her hair is braided, twisted, and sewn from real wool and is adorned with ostrich feathers, pearls, crystal beads, and ribbon rosettes. Her gossamer wrap is a snip of a white bridal stocking. Her "wish" is torn from an old tattered dictionary. She is mounted in a double framed shadow box. I like the inside frame of black and gold very much but am undecided about the wood outside frame. I may need to paint or change it up. Any suggestions?

I hope you all have a glorious day!

Miss Sandy

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I've Been Blogged...

I was getting ready to post this afternoon when I checked my email only to find out that I had been Blogged! Not being sure exactly what that meant I thought I'd better investigate. The email said that some editors from Blogged.com had reviewed my blog and rated it. I was give a score of 7.2 out of a possible ten, a rating that means "very good" in the "Home and Family" category. The evaluation was based on the frequency of updates, the relevancy of content, site design (Thanks Kris!), and writing style.

Curiouser and curiouser I went over to Blogged.com to check it out. Sure enough, midway down page ten there I am. Quite the honor and surprise! I checked out their policies, about them, and other such stuff and claimed ownership of my blog. I was actually surprised at all the blog choices and categories they have. Now, I cannot vouch for every blog they list as they are too numerous to go through but I did checkout and find some excellent ones.

If you would like to check them out, recommend a blog, or rate a blog you can go HERE. To see my category, simply click on the little button that says, "blogged" on my upper side bar just above "Daily Inspiration". This will take you to the first page of the "Home and Family" page, just scroll down and page over until you find me. Feel free to visit there and rate away, with honesty please! I'd love to have your feedback on what you like or don't like, what you'd like to see more or less of. I always appreciate your input and your readership.

Last week sweet Vee left me a little calling card:
Isn't that the best, to be a certified gold card carrying top of the line blogging friend? Thank you so very much sweet Vee for the honor! Vee said her card came with no rules so she got to make up her own. I'll be passing this along very soon.

I am currently working on a post about another very special blogger and hope to have it up in the next day or two. Sorry for being MIA four a couple of days, another migraine. I am back up and running and hope to be back on a regular posting schedule by next week. Until next post, many blessings pouring your way!

Miss Sandy

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Serendipity Sunday: There's No Place Like Home...

Serendipity: An instance of making a delightful and unexpected discovery

~American Heritage Dictionary~

The following is an excerpt from my personal journal. This was written back in 1996, shortly after I became a new believer. It is based on observations I made while watching the "Wizard of Oz" with my daughter. Coming to know Christ was an instance of delightful and unexpected discovery. The search for faith led me on a fantastic and incredible journey with the unexpected result of homecoming for my heart.
"The Fantastic Journey," "Journey to the Center of the Earth," "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea," " "Around the World in Eighty Days," and the "Wizard of Oz" are all movie titles that relate to some sort of journey or adventure. Lord, they all seem to me to be what everyone is looking for, a fantastic journey here on earth. We seem to be looking everywhere, under the sea, all around the world, even to places that don't really exist, like the land of Oz, hoping to find something, anything fulfilling.I have felt very much like Dorothy in the "Wizard of Oz." I awakened in a new place when I met You, Lord. Like Dorothy said in the movie, it just isn't Kansas anymore. It is a strange, new, and beautiful place. Just like Dorothy I've started down that yellow brick road, not knowing where it was going to lead, and meeting some strange characters that look vaguely familiar.
I've met the Cowardly Lion and curiously he has a face much like mine or at least my reflection. Like that Lion, I've spent a great deal of my life being afraid of everything. He was seeking courage, as was I. He finds he had it within him all the time, so have I, You gave it to me. Like the Lion, I just had to learn to use it. The key to my success has been this: "Fear not for I am with you, be not dismayed for I am your God, I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, yes, I will uphold you with the right hand of my righteousness." (Isaiah 41:10) You are strength in my weakness.I have met the Tin Man who only wanted a heart. He thought he did not have one; maybe it got rusted and frozen up because of harsh exposure to unwanted elements. Mine did. He found he had one, a perfectly good one, he just had to use a little oil and a soft cloth to clean it up and get in proper working order again. Mine needed that also. It needed oil, Your oil of anointing, Your oil of joy, and a soft cloth, Your robe of righteousness. "I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul will be joyful in my God; for He has clothed me with the garments of salvation, He has covered me with the robe of righteousness..." (Isaiah 61:10) These were needed to polish my heart up and set it to working properly.I have met the Scarecrow, who only wanted a brain and thought his head was only stuffed full of straw. It was for a while, stuffed full of stubble left there from long ago, packed in real tight and crowding out good thoughts. He was a clumsy fellow, one of his many falls knocked his stuffing loose and he began to think clearly. He did have a brain, a good one; it just needed to be cleaned up. Mine had bits of stubble stashed and stored from the past, really packed in tight. One of my falls knocked my stuffing loose and I am beginning to think more clearly and my mind is seeing more of You, God. "Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me and know my thoughts; And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way of everlasting." (Psalm 139:23-24) The old stuff is beginning to disintegrate and light is sifting through, the light of Your Word.
What about Dorothy? She just wanted to go home. She knew there was no place like it. It was what she longed for and searched for. In vain she followed that yellow brick road. All she found along the way was trouble, a wicked witch, flying monkeys, magic spells, and not a moment of peace. The power to go home was within her all the time, on her feet, those shiny red shoes. She found out after traveling all that time that there is no place like home. Lord, I have found that out also, my heart longed for a homecoming to You. My heart longed to belong to You. All that searching down the wrong paths I have taken have led me to all manner of calamity and not a moment of peace. The power to go home was with me all that time, like Dorothy, I just had to ask. It was not in the form of shiny red shoes but in the shiny red blood of Jesus. "For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins." (Matthew 26:28) I have come home and there is no place like it.Lord, Dorothy met a wicked witch who tried everything in her power to hurt or destroy her every chance she got. I have experienced one similar to her, Satan. Satan, like the witch, plots to inflict pain, suffering, deceit, trickery, and destruction. In the movie there was always a way of escape or a successful rescue attempt. "There has no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that you are able; but will with the temptation also make a way of escape, that you may be able to bear it." (1 Corinthians 10:13) Thank You for always making a way of escape from calamity and sin
And what of that great and powerful Oz guy? Who was he trying to fool? He could not give courage, restart a rusty corroded heart, or clear a mind of hay and stubble, not could he show Dorothy the way home. I know the secret; there is one, only one, who can give us courage to face daily life and struggles. There is only one who can oil and clean our hearts. There is only one who can clear a mind of hay and stubble. Most importantly, there is only one who can lead us home. It is Jesus. "Jesus said unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes unto the Father, but by me." (John 14:6)

I have landed home Lord and there is no place like it! Thank You for giving me courage in the face of adversity. Thank You for the oiling, care and cleaning of my heart. Thank You for the clearing of my mind. Thank You for the daily leading in Your direction, showing my heart and feet the right path to take. "Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." (Psalm 119:105)

No Lord, this is not Kansas anymore, I am not riding that cyclone spinning and tearing out of control, deeper and further into sin. Everything has changed. This is a better place to be, quieter, peaceful, comfortable, and satisfying. It is so much more, there are not words enough to describe it except to say that it is the peace of Your presence. "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world give, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." (John 14:27)

Oh yes, I have traveled to Oz and met with many strange and wonderful sights. It was an adventure of a lifetime, but as Dorothy so aptly put it, "There is no place like home!" "That if you will confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and will believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you shall be saved." (Romans 10:9) Jesus, my heart is home!...."

Miss Sandy

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Wishing You a Wonderful Weekend...

"On the motionless branches of some trees,Autumn berries hung like clusters of coral beads,
As in those fabled orchardsWhere the fruits were jewels"~Charles Dickens~

I wish you all a "berry" wonderful weekend!

Miss Sandy

Photos: The above berries caught my eye as I was getting into my car at a flea market. They were draped across a rugged fence and reaching for the azure sky.

Friday, October 24, 2008

"Pocket Full of Wishes" Winner...

"If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you."
~John15:7~(Fine art print, The child prophet, Samuel, in prayer by Joshua Reynolds)

I cannot begin to express how blessed I was by all the prayer wishes left on Wednesday's post. My wish is that all your prayers will be fulfilled. I truly found it impossible even using the custom random number generator to choose a winner. You are all winners in my book, SERIOUSLY, you ALL win!

Each person who left me a comment on Wednesday's post, please email me your address along with your blog name, if you have one, and you will receive a handmade gift from me. Each one will be unique in it's design. Please be patient and give me a week before the mailing as I need to get them all made. I will email you when the
y go out.

In the meantime, I do need to pick a winner for the "Pocket Full of Wishes" mini journal and the surprise goodies, drum roll please, and the winner is...
Cindy of Cindy is Crafty! Congratulations Cindy!

I'll leave you with a sneak peek of another work in progress on my work table and my wish for each of you who visit here at Quill Cottage.
May Christ dwell richly in your hearts by faith. May you be rooted and grounded in His love, comprehending the depth, breadth, length, and height of that love. May you be filled with all the fullness of God and given strength, joyfulness, and gratitude for each day. May the Lord bless and keep you. May His face shine upon you. May He be gracious unto you. May He bless you with peace.

Many Blessings,
Miss Sandy

Thursday, October 23, 2008

A Pocket Full of Wishes Prize.....

"A prayer in its simplest definition is merely a wish turned Godward."
~Phillips Brooks~
(Wish Upon A Star by Jessie Wilcox Smith)

Yesterday I asked you to make a wish and promised a peek at the prize. My heart was really touched by the wishes you left behind. You have blessed me beyond words. Thank you!

Here it is,
"A Pocket Full of Wishes" Mini JournalThe journal is covered in handmade paper. On the front is a mini pocket stitched from muslin and vintage lace. A small "WISH" tag is pinned to the pocket. The tag holds a little seed wish. A golden angel holding a harp adorns the pocket. This angel represents the angels mentioned in Rev. 5:8 who held harps and golden bowls filled with prayers, delivering them to the alter.Tucked into the pocket is a small collage card backed with handmade paper.
The card can be used as a book mark or a gift tag if desired. If the tag is removed, the pocket would be a handy place to keep business cards, coupons, or receipts.The journal has a tie closure and the inside front and back covers are decorated as well.A few surprise goodies will be tucked in with this little gift.
There is still time to sign up HERE . A winner will be chosen and posted tomorrow.

Miss Sandy

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Make A Wish.....

A wish is a hope or desire for something.

(illustration by John Bauer, a fairy offering wishes)

"Every wish is like a prayer ~ with God."
~Elizabeth Barrett Browning~
Aurora Leigh

We all harbor a delicate dandelion dream in our hearts, a seed~like hope or desire that we cling to. Until that seed is released it cannot be realized.
So make a wish...
Breathe it like a prayer.
Watch it take flight,
Let it float on the breeze.
Here, take one of these...
And make a wish.
What will it be?

Miss Sandy

P.S. I will pick a wish from one of the comments from this post and the winner will receive a prize. Tune in tomorrow to see the prize and Friday for the winner announcement.

Monday, October 20, 2008

It's Fall Ya'll.....

"I cannot endure to waste anything as precious as Autumn sunshine by staying in the house. So I spend almost all the daylight hours in the open air."
~Nathaniel Hawthorne~
It really IS fall ya'll! I have been waiting and waiting and waiting for fall to show up here at the Quill. The heat and humidity blew away on a North wind and ushered in some cooler weather. Best of all dame Autumn has opened up her box of brilliant crayons and has begun to color the landscape with bits of red and yellow. She was very kind to lend me a few leaves for a decorating project. I very much enjoyed her company all day on Saturday.
After spending some time tidying up the yard I decided to spend the day out of doors decorating my front steps. After sorting through my outdoor decor I really didn't want to do the same~old same~old but I also did not want to go out and buy anything new. What's a girl to do? Listen to the advice of her grandmother who always said, "Use what the Good Lord has given you." So I looked around God's Garden to see what kind of crafting supplies He had on hand.I have always wanted to try one of those swags over my front door and found some vine with green leaves that would fit the bill to use as a base. I had two sets of matching silk leaves that would do nicely for filler. I gathered bunches of berries, red and yellow leaves, acorns, and seed pods from darling daughters Mimosa tree to make myself some natural "floral picks".After securing the vine across the door frame and adding the silk leaves I wired on the bunches of berries using copper wire. I used upholstery thread and a needle to stitch together the leaves and seed pods, leaving long tails to tie them to the vine, hot gluing three acorns over the stitching on each one. I tied them to the vine.Using copper wire and leftover vine I wove a birds nest. I had to marvel over the fact that I had to use two hands, two knees, and sometimes a chin to hold everything into place and a bird can do this with one beak! (TIP: Don't use vine with thorns.) I think it came out pretty good. I filled the inside with some litter from the forest floor, bits of moss, lichen, and a tiny feather.I wired it to the corner of the swag and added a few springs of yellow silk flowers I had on hand. It is almost complete. I did not fill it out really full because I wanted it to look loose and natural. I may have to add some bits as the green leaves wither, we'll see. I want to add a bird but need a larger one so I guess I will be making at least one purchase after all. Somewhere I have some rusty metal letters that I want to wire in a "Welcome" message. I'll gussy up the steps a bit and then it will be a done deal. Next I'll be moving on to the flower bed next to our front gate. More fall decor to come!

Miss Sandy
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