Dec 26, 2013

Washi Tape Crazy

(I was responding to a blog post over at Cloth Paper Scissors, and I got to thinking my reply would make a good post as well. )

I'm washi tape crazy, and if it sits still, it gets taped. I use it to decorate things like clothespins, light switch covers, ceramic tiles, paper mache boxes, as well as paper projects like cards and tags.

I like using assorted colors of painted backgrounds to change the way the tape appears. Try using several colors with the same tape to see varying effects. For example, with my clothespins I ordinarily paint them white before applying tape, but I've also made sets with, say, three pastel colors and applied the same tape. The result is novel because the tape is translucent (most of it.) Here are two sets I made that show what I mean. Each set is decorated with the same tape but the clothespins are painted different colors first.

You have to be careful with knock off tapes because they don't all have the same adhesive qualities. Some will have very little stickiness, some will stick too much and not be repositionable. For most of my projects, I will seal the tape with decoupage glue and/or acrylic sealer, because it will eventually peel off. At the same time, that is one of its redeeming qualities. You can remove it without leaving tape residue. I decorated a mason jar for 4th of July, then removed the tape and reused the jar for another project.

Here's my American flag---an idea I got from another blog, "Washi Tape Crafts."

Most washi tape is sold online, and the prices range from $2.50 - $5.00 USD per roll, depending on if it is true designer tape from Japan or a knock-off from China. Also, don't confuse Korean "Deco-tape" which is plastic, not paper. Some scrapbooking companies are making tape for sale in stores, like K&Co. Because I like to make things that are coordinated, I've been using a lot of the Scotch brand that came out recently. It's available at many office supply stores. Online, Cute Tape has a fine selection and good prices. Here's most of the tape I have. None of my Christmas tapes are included.

Apr 1, 2013

How Lovely Are Thy Dwellings

Many of you having been praying for me to discover God's direction in caring for my elderly parents and that the doctors would fix the swelling in my legs. Well, I have a story of praise to share with you. I know it is long, but I hope that you will read it.

My family and I were in Texas, and my husband and daughter went to tour the Longhorn Caverns State Park. Because of the swelling in my legs, which was painful and prevented me from walking much, I stayed above ground while they went below. It was a peaceful place, and I wandered down a quiet park trail. Having read about or heard from people who met with God in a natural setting, I started praying that I would hear that still, small voice. God speaks to us through His word, and I had my Daily Light with me, so I sat on a rock and read. After what seemed like an eternity of silence, I headed back to the park's cafe. It was then that I received a text from my parents: We both want and need you.

I had been waiting for that call for since November when my mother had her first surgery. I had resolved to not rush in with my usual take charge nature and wait for them to want me to help. They, like many their age, were fiercely independent and resisted offers of help. I had made sure to ask periodically if they needed me to come, and the answer was always, “I think I'm doing OK, so not now.”

Was this text God's way of speaking to me? I felt like it was, so I started putting things into motion to make it possible for me to go. I am leaving early wednesday morning and plan to stay until the end of April, longer if need be. It will be a sacrifice for me to drop everything I do, leave my family behind, miss medical appointments, and try to run my business from afar. However, as I told my daughter, God has set my feet upon a path and He will make a way. I just have to trust Him. She had been slightly disapproving of my going, insisting that it was time for someone else to step up to the task. I reminded her that we are commanded to honor our parents---the only commandment with a promise “that your days may be long upon the land which the LORD your God is giving you.”

So, what was I to do about my health issues, particularly my swollen legs and feet? How was I to care for two infirm parents when some days I had difficulty caring for my own self? Again, I am trusting that God will make a way. He is going before me, and as long as I obey, He will see that I succeed. He has many names and facets of personality, and I call upon them for different purposes: Jehovah Jireh, the God who is providing me a way to travel, Jehovah Rophe, the God who will heal me so that I can do my mission, Jehovah Nissi, the Lord is my Banner who gives me victory in defeating the enemy. He is also Adonai, the LORD of my life.

So, it was hardly a surprise when I woke up this morning and had...ANKLES. Let us sing praises to the God, our shield and defender, our place of rest, our strong tower. Let us not be anxious for the future but “come before His presence with singing. Know that the LORD, He is God.” (Psalm 100)

Here are the lyrics to a song I sung as a tribute to my mother who encouraged me to sing. Sing along with me.

How Lovely Are Thy Dwellings
music by Samuel Liddle copyright © 1908 by Boosey & Co., renewed 1935; renewal copyright assigned to Boosey & Hawkes, Inc. 

How lovely are Thy dwellings, O Lord of Hosts!
My soul longeth, yea, fainteth, for the courts of the Lord:
My heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.
Yea, the sparrow hath found her an house,
And the swallow a nest, where she may lay her young,
Even Thine altars, O Lord of Hosts, my King and my God.
O Lord God of Hosts, hear my prayer.
I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God,
Than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.
For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. 

Mar 4, 2013

Creative Unblockage---A Little Help From My Friends

As a creative sort, I use up a whole lot of energy on whatever task I'm creating at the moment, and writing a blog post has been sitting on the back burner. I think I need a turntable, or a lazy-susan. It would be sectioned off and labeled "Writing", "Crocheting", "Papercrafting", "Learning a New Craft". I would turn it to the next section and work on that project, then turn again. Unfortunately, it would have a very big section labeled "Maintaining an Etsy Store."

I probably need a whole turntable just for my Etsy store. I used to label days of the week with different activities, such as photography day, listing day, crocheting day, but there weren't enough days in the week. Part of the reason is because I'm so slow.

With the mental and physical fatigue of fibromyalgia, things that used to take me a short time, now take forever. I've read articles about time management that say to spend one hour a day on the internet. That was supposed to include updating Facebook and Twitter, as well as answering emails and blogging. An hour a day gets me answering my email, to give you an idea of how slow I am.