Saturday, July 4, 2015

Nothing Says "America" Quite Like Home Made Ice Cream

Happy July 4th- What a great holiday! It's one of the few holidays in America that isn't centered around consumerism.  For a great celebration, all we really need is fireworks (any kind you want!) and home made ice cream.

At least that's how it is for me.

Dad used to make his home made ice cream on this day each summer while we were growing up.  He made 4 flavors: 
Vanilla with Pecans
Vanilla with Pineapple
Vanilla with Pineapple and Pecans

I might have been the culprit for why he had to make these subtle varieties.  I was a very picky eater as a kid.  And still am.  Although now, I'm past my "no crunchy things in soft things" texture demand.  I'm nuts about nuts.  Just like my dad.

He would spend hours on the makings of that ice cream of his!  I remember that it involved salt rocks, and that his hands got scratched up.  He did it out in the garage and it seemed very messy with newspapers all around, insulating the ice cream maker.  I could be wrong and may have mixed up these memories... but what I remember for sure is it was THE. BEST. ICE. CREAM. I. HAVE. EVER. TASTED.

So today, in celebration of America- and my Dad- and my idyllic childhood- I'm making my version of Dad's famous "Vanilla Ice Cream with Pineapple and Pecans".  Delicious!
Not as good as Dad's, but it'll do!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Music Monday- Kacey Musgraves "Late to the Party"

Last week was my birthday. And the whole week felt like a the greatest little party. 

I loved Kacey Musgraves' debut CD that was floating around for the last year or two.  She had the same guitar teacher that I had when I was a kid!  I love the sound of her music, her voice, but more than anything--- her clever lyrics.

Her second CD came out last week, just in time for my birthday!  I bought it through my Amazon Prime account so I got both an immediate download of the CD, and then a couple of days later the hard copy arrived in my mailbox.

I'm posting up one of my initial favorites of her new batch of songs- "Late to the Party".  I totally relate to the lyrics... Not really caring about being late to parties.  I'm not much of a group party person, even for my birthday.  "I'm never late to the party if I'm late to the party with you"- I'm so lucky and so grateful that I feel that way about the person I've spent pretty much all of my adult life with. Ahhh-- Fermin Arista.  Who needs confetti?! It's all one big fun party with you!

Friday, June 26, 2015

Vintage Earring Repurposing Project- Before and After

One of my neighbor friends was nice enough stop at an estate sale on my behalf while Fermin and I were out of town last weekend.  It was one I had been eagerly awaiting in our neighborhood, but as I was leaving town, I saw that it was going to happen while I was away. Yay for good neighborfriends!

She totally scored and got me a couple of small baggies full of vintage jewelry.  My favorite pair of earrings were these, pictured on the right.
vintage button earrings

As soon as I saw them, I put them on. I forgot to take out my pierced studs I was already wearing. My earring and the clip of these vintage earrings got tangled up and stuck together.  PANIC. I was so afraid that I was going to rip my earring right through my ear while Fermin was assisting my struggle to separate the two earrings.

Finally, I was free.  But my ear was sore and I was just freaked out.  When I tried to put the clip earrings back on, it sort of hurt.  I'm not sure if it was just due to my "incident" with the earring entanglement, or if the clips were just painful (as they so often are), but I decided to repurpose these earrings so that I (or anyone else) never had to deal with those stupid clips again.

First,I snapped off the clips and filed them down.  Then I noticed, either I had knocked the pearls loose, or they were already coming lose on their own. I decided to get out the handy E6000 I so often use for vintage jewelry repair to secure them down.
jewelry repurposing and repair
Then I wire wrapped a vintage pearl bead from my stash and used it as a connector between the button shaped earrings and the pierced ear wires.

adding a pretty little pearl...
 I'm so happy with the final result.  They look so much cuter on the ears now that they are dangle earrings.  As clips, they not only caused me pain, but got lost in my hair and didn't really show up.  Now they still have the charm of vintage, but with an updated look and a more comfortable feel!
repurposing complete!
I just put them up for sale over in the Resparkable Vintage shop- Go check out this link to see them and find out more.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Letters to Camp Longhorn

Who would have thought 30 years ago when I was mailing off letters to my best friend at camp, that one day, I'd be sending off letters to her daughter, at that same camp! Well, that's what's happening here today.  How cool is that?!

Friday, June 19, 2015

These People

Years ago- 10 in fact- I got some random email by someone forming a group to read and talk through Julia Cameron's, The Artist Way, together. I have no idea how or why I was on that email list, because I didn't know the person who sent it, and the meeting spot was a church which I don't attend.
But I had the book on my bookshelf-- had had the book on my shelf for several years- but had never gotten past Chapter 1 on my own.

So I thought, "Why not?" and I showed up to the very first meeting.

And so did all these people.

Our Artist Way group- 10 years later!
Because of the nature of the book, we were all pretty vulnerable in exposing our true selves to each other as we worked through each chapter of that book. We had conversations that were much deeper and we got to know each other on a whole different level and speed than what was typical for me. Anyway, we made it through the whole book, chapter by chapter and week by week. I don't think I ever would have done it on my own.  But with these people, I wanted to stick with it.

I had recently lost my Mom.  March 29 of 2005. I have often thought 2005 was the worst and hardest year for me.

But it seems there were angels all around me.  Lots of good came from that year, too.  The best being simply that I just made it through that year.

And this group of people, all these people I didn't know, and wouldn't have met otherwise, become so important to me and I looked forward to those Monday night meetings. 

The book, The Artist's Way, and the exercises in it, help you get back in touch with the little artist in you that might have gotten shoved aside over the years.  I was really focused on my songwriting performance during this time period and I'm sure that being in this group nurtured that in me. And without Mom, believe me, I needed all the nurturing I could get!

Honestly, the book was okay. It got me on to some good practices for sure.  But it was these people that created the magic.  Some weeks I'd be a little "meh" about the chapter we had read, but once we discussed it, whether or not the book resonated with me, these people did, and I always left feeling I had learned something invaluable.

Although we've kept in touch over the years, the time between getting together has grown longer and longer.  But it still feels like a tight and important group and we sure love each other, and have no problem picking right back up where we left off the last time.

 Ahhh... these people!