And the Journey Continues…

So, when last we met I was in the beginning stages of a paper mache deer head made from recycled material.

As I said previously, my husband is an avid hunter so I asked his opinion about the state of the project. “Wellllll,” he began, ” the neck is a little thin.”

I agreed.

cups for trachea

As you can see, I  used a Styrofoam cup cut in half. It actually had a better affect than I expected. I had hoped to create a thicker neck as my husband recommended but this shape looked like a trachea after it was papered as you will see in the final pictures on this blog.

Next, I needed to add the horns at this point. I decided to use pieces of wiring we had left from our last building project.

b8f94336-8832-4ec4-9581-f1e8a5a8560e

I didn’t know how I was going to accomplish this feat so I did what I always do when I have no idea how to do something… I just started experimenting till I felt it was right..

making horns our of wire                                                         8cddf94c-3625-4091-bce7-86d854b00c17

 

I have been adding layers of paper mache since these were attached and it is getting very near to the stage where I begin to “finesse” the shape.

Here is where we stand today…

deer with antlers after several layers                               deer w horns                                    deer w horns 2

I’ll be adding several more layers to give this handsome beast extra strength. Right now there is still a little looseness in the antlers and the muzzle is still a little flimsy. I expect over the next three days I should get between 15 and 20 layers on since I have a fan dedicated to drying constantly.

I’ll post more after these are dried and I have began adding the final paper sculpting.

Till then be well,

 

Andora

 

What My Little Birdhouse Taught Me

This morning at 3:30 a.m. or so, I couldn’t sleep. The fact that I hadn’t gone to bed till after 11p.m. did not elude me. This is nothing new really, but I couldn’t get my mind to shut off either.Normally, Kindle Fire is my go to distraction for occasions such as this but I couldn’t concentrate well enough to read and playing a game at that time of the morning just seemed insane to me.

I got up and went to my craft room. I didn’t want to wake my husband and creating something usually makes me feel much better. Sadly, that didn’t happen this morning but I did learn something I think.

See, I grabbed a little birdhouse that I had almost finished. It was already decoupaged, and only needed the final clear protective coat and a hanger to ready for use outside. This picture shows what an unfinished birdhouse looks like alongside the one I broke trying to put the hanging mechanism on.

unpainted and broken birdhouses 

I couldn’t get the hole centered on the roof so that I could thread the wire hanger. I tried the drill, but it was out of batteries. I tried a screw and screw driver to make the hole but it wouldn’t line up. I tried a nail. (Yes, at 4 a.m. I was nailing this poor sad little birdhouse.) Then, in my frustration I smashed the nail which broke the roof and the wood on the back side of the house.

broken birdhouse birdhouse without roof

As I was sitting there fuming at how I had only been trying to quietly create something nice for the birds, it occurred to me that the unfinished birdhouse would have been fine for the birds as all they do it flit in and out stopping long enough to be seen and then they are off again. I had already decoupaged the thing and it was decorated sufficiently for any feathered friend. Actually, I’m told they rather prefer the unfinished houses anyway. But I wasn’t looking for “good enough”, no, I was seeking to make it “perfect” or rather, my definition of perfect for that occasion.

I sat and let my blood pressure fall as it had risen quite high in all my frustration and I pondered how this little birdhouse was sort of representative of how I handle a lot of things.

I always want to be better, do better, try harder, give more. I always strive for “perfection” as I see it. But the thing is, in all that striving, I have never achieved perfection. I know that ‘excellence” would be a better goal. I know that the stress of always striving and never feeling “good enough” is hurting my heart; quite literally. Next week will mark the one year anniversary since I had a heart attack. This Sunday will mark three weeks since I had a TIA due to elevated blood pressure. When will I learn? What will it take for me to get it? All of this stress is killing me and most of it is self made! Of course there is stress that is just a part of life but so much could be avoided if I would just chill out and realize that God can use my broken vessel. He uses what we offer Him, He offers peace, He is The Perfection I seek and I will never be able to attain apart from Him.

So, I took my little broken birdhouse and thanked God for reminding me, again, that He uses broken things, and broken people for His glory. I created a whole new roof for the house out of craft sticks. I was going to fix the wood on the back but I knew I would likely need the reminder again so I just protected it with some glue and sealant so that I could see the scarred place in the wood.finished birdhouseThis is the front of my little birdhouse, and the next photo is the back. You can see all the imperfections and I’m learning to be okay with that.

Back side of finished birdhouse

Back side of finished birdhouse

Where Have I Been?

I haven’t blogged much lately and for that I apologize to my faithful readers and friends. Sunday, while getting ready for church, I had a TIA, or what the doctors called a “temporary stroke”. It was scary. Blood pressure was over 200 and I was not myself; couldn’t speak correctly, legs not working well for standing or walking, tremors, numbness from head to toe on right side. It was scary stuff.

I’m out of the hospital now and feeling a bit better. Working to get all the numbers right and praying for, if not understanding, then grace.

Promise to post more regularly in the future and if there is a topic you would like to discuss, you would like to challenge me to write a poem or article about, please do let me know. I love a good writing challenge.

Till next time,

Peace ~ Andora

Our Family Creed

We had to research family crests one week for a home school assignment. Because our family is blended and adopted in many ways  there was no one crest we could identify as our own. We created our own family crest representing different skin colors and backgrounds but exhibiting that our foundation is love and Christ.

My girls were 8 or 9 years old at the time, and our son had already graduated. I think they did a great job and we have used this many times. Family is not always those you are related to; sometimes it is those who love you and support you, who put in the time and energy to help you be your best. I love my lovable, imperfect, nutty, sometimes hormonal, always entertaining family and I feel so blessed that they love me.

Our Family Creed