Blessing Tree


Having had a bit of a creative slump lately, I was moping around at home trying to figure out something I could do to get me back on track.  I didn’t want to make a card (odd, for me, because I always like making cards) and my attempts at making a Kelly Rae Roberts-inspired collage were all dismal and uninspiring.  So, what to do?

I have a box of “bits” that I hold on to for upcycling/altering or using in other projects.  It’s got tins and wooden blocks, boxes, decorations and papier mache forms.  Basically, it’s a box of crap that I have collected.  It’s a hoarder’s dream, but it does come in handy when I am stuck for inspiration and want to do something different.

So, with that in mind, I rummaged around and found these weird Christmas decorations.  I bought them years ago in a post-Xmas sale, so they only cost me 25c each or something (the original price was $9.99 – ridiculous!).  I thought they would be good for altering, stamping on, painting etc.  I liked the shape and the fact they had a good solid base, as well as being able to hang them from something.

Crazily expensive Xmas decoration!

I had been playing around with them for a bit when I decided to make a tree out of one of them.  Don’t ask me why.  I like trees, I guess, but I had never really had an urgent desire  to make a little mini-tree of my own.  This one came together reasonably quickly, once I got into it.  I covered the body/trunk in dictionary text and sealed it with gel medium mixed with a little black and brown paint.  I raided some sticks from the neighbour’s tree and made wee little branches with them, stuck into the holes in the wooden shape.

During a crafty session with my nephews and nieces, I made some teeny-weeny mushrooms and a little bird out of polymer clay.  After baking them and letting them cool, I painted them (with a lot of squinting) with acrylic paints.

Polymer clay teeny-tiny mushrooms and a birdie!
Painting mushroom # 1
Adding the final detail to mushroom # 3.  Do you know how fiddly it is to paint tiny little “gills” on a tiny little mushroom?
Wee birdie.  I didn’t make him too detailed.  Partly out of laziness, but mostly because I was scared of making a shemozzle out of it.

I then crafted a little bird’s nest from twine, which was oddly therapeutic. Just twisting and fraying the twine and making it a roughly bird-nesty shape.  I really do like making tiny things.  I don’t know why, but they are very satisfying and appealing, from a creative point of view.  I really do need to wear my glasses when doing this stuff though!

Mini bird’s nest!
Happy little birdie in a tiny nest!

Eventually, it was all put together (very carefully – it’s not the most robust of creations!), sitting on a base of sphagnum moss glued to a wooden lid, and I’m pretty happy with it.  It’s just for me.  No purpose behind it (not a gift or something to sell) – it’s just purely for me.  I added the “Benedictus” text (from an old large print dictionary) because, very roughly translated, it means “Blessed Be” which kinda resonates with me for various reasons.  I wanting to make some more things like this now.  I’m feeling the mixed-media vibe right now!  I’d like to try some tea-bag art next…will keep you posted!

Thanks for stopping by 🙂

The final product.  Blessing Tree complete.  Blessed Be!

May the Road Rise

Another quick and simple card today.  I did think about adding to this one, but it seemed pretty much “done” from the get-go, with just backing paper, birdie and blessing.  I shaded the bird a little, with some distress ink, so that he was tonally matched to everything else.  I’m glad he was holding on to a branch because it meant I didn’t have to cut out teeny weeny toes like I normally do 🙂

I wish the sun was shining warm upon my face today, but it is bleak and rainy and bleurgh.  It’s been so jolly cold – lots of I-can’t-feel-my-toes kind of days and I am now suffering from a horrible lurgy, made all the more miserable by the grey and depressing weather.  Getting up in the morning is hard enough when it’s dark outside and drizzling with rain , but then add to it a stinking head cold and you might as well forget the whole thing and stay in bed. Which is very much what I wanted to do today.

Until we meet again…x




Today, April 8th, is the three year anniversary of me contracting and surviving meningitis.  Those three years have gone by so quickly but, at the same time, my illness seems like just yesterday and I remember my hospital stay in great detail.

This is just a quick post to send out a “Thank You” to all the people (doctors, nurses, family, friends, physiotherapists and so many others) who cared for me and made sure I got through this particularly dark time in my life.  Dark because I was so scared and so very very ill – but also an extremely uplifting experience because I was loved and looked after and never left alone for a single moment.  I think I summed it all up in my Facebook post today (after someone had told me I was amazing):

“Actually I think I am just supremely lucky to have been surrounded by lots and lots of angels in the form of awesome doctors (including the student doctor who came to see me the day after I came out of the coma and said “Meningitis…grrr..agggh” like the zombie at the end of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and told me he was really really glad I didn’t die ’cause that would have been “a bummer and everyone would have been sad”), amazing nurses (who entertained me with hospital gossip and dance routines and brought me milo in the middle of the night and sat on the floor next to my bed and talked to me about anything but illness and fed and dressed and bathed me when I was incapable of doing anything myself), lovely patients who helped look out for me even though they themselves were unwell, wonderful orderlies who rubbed my hands when they were so painful and made me laugh and encouraged me to eat, beautiful friends and family who loved me and visited me and didn’t let me wallow in self pity when all I wanted to do was sink down under it and drown and for everything to be over. I’m not amazing, just amazingly blessed.”

I will be forever grateful to everyone for surrounding me with so much love and care.  It filled up my heart and made my body strong and helped me walk again and come back to the land of the living.