Friday, November 30, 2012

Discovered the masters of wood

I cant explain it but living in Maine inspires you to create. Every town has art galleries, craft shows, theater, musems and other venues that pull you in to discover your creative side. This is what has happen to my husband and I. My current art medium is soap. I spend most of my day reading and watching videos on the subject and I enjoy each moment. My husband is embraceing the art of woodworking. His current interest is woodframing. We were shopping for some tools and a cashier at a craftstore reccommended we stop in to Rockler. We did and we were blown away. The service awesome and the products premier. Molly was are sales clerk. She had such passion and knowledge well beyond her years. She also showed us a picture of a rocking chair she made. It was stunning. We stayed a while browsing asking question and getting instruction. When we returned home I took my soap out of the Pringles mold.

My 1st round soap!!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

3rd batch of soap

I am excited about soap making. Today was my 1st attempt at Hot process soap making using a crock pot. It did not go as plan. I did not cook the soap long enough and I stirred the soap to soon. I salvaged the results and used a Pringles can for the mold. I will unveil tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Exploring Maine

Today was another day of discovery in Maine. I have really taken on to learning the craft of soap making and needed to find some supplies. I figured this should be easy but it was not. I tried several stores and came up with nothing. I know there are many online resources but I wanted to search in the area I live in. One of the merchants did not have the supplies I was looking for but told me about the Long Branch School & General Store. I looked them up immediately when I returned home. I was nicely surprised to see what they are doing. The school teaches traditional skills that are almost loss in this century from blacksmith to soap making. I know that Maine is big and there are more places to search but I found much more then supplies today.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The land to create

I have always enjoyed working with my hands. Learning how to write was fun. To use a tool to create something had me smitten. When I was a adolescence my grandmother paid a lady to teach me to knit. I can't remember her name but I remember how patient and nice she was. Time stood still in that moment with her. Teaching me the knit stitch was her only agenda. I don't remember practicing that much on my own but I happily anticipated our knitting session.

In my junior year in high school I volunteered to answer phones for the special Olympics in my city. I shared a cubicle space with a kind elderly lady who was doing a technique with a canvas and needle. I enjoyed watching her. She noticed my interest and she told me about the cross stitch technique she was doing. It was beautiful and intricate, yet easy to learn. She begin to teach me. I learned the cross stitch technique easily. I continued cross stitching thru out college. It was soothing to cross stitch while watching a movie, talking with a friend or listening to music.  I stopped cross stitching the year our daughter was born. I was afraid that I would forget a needle was not put away and she would get accidentally pricked.

The following year we welcomed our second child a son into the world. By the time  both children were toddlers I felt more comfortable to try cross stiching again. The children did not bother my needles or canvas but they kept my so busy it was hard to complete a stitch. By the time I put them to bed I would be so exhausted from the day I would fall to sleep on my knees after praying with the children.

Parenting small children almost solo because my husband was in his residency didnot  allow much time to sit and think.  But time and change can bring new opportunities. I had cut my hair when our daughter was one and I wanted to learn more about managing African American hair in its natural state. I heard about a technique called Sisterlocks. I found a book and online information about classes to learn the technique. I began to pray about it. There was a 3 day class offered in Atlanta and the fee was over $600.00. My life to this point had proven that I have a spiritual gift of big faith and this was needed to get me to the class. A miracle did happen and I went to the training. John was on break and was able to care for the children. I went eager and ready to learn. What moved me the most was that the technique reminded me of cross stitching. I got excited to think that I would be paid to "cross stitch" someones hair. I ended up having a great business at home for almost 10 years.

This recent move to Maine has brought me to a new place of discovery. There are so many crafters ( or those who work with their hands) that I have been working on finding my nitch. I live in a community of writer, woodcrafters, artist, knitters, soap makers and the list goes on. Every time I am out for a walk  I run into a neighbor who is either starting or finishing a project. This has truly inspired me to find a craft. So in my search I connected to soap making. I love baking
(not cooking) and this craft mimicks the actions of a baker.  I enjoy spending hours reading and researching. I have made 2 batches of soap and preparing for my 3rd batch. Wow maine has been a unique place to live. It is a land to be creative. It's A-Maine-zing!!

This is my 2nd batch of soap!

Monday, November 26, 2012

My 1st soap bars!!!!

I have been anxiously waiting for today to unveil my 1st molded soap bars. They came out easy but they are soft to the touch. I am enjoying this soap journey. I am learning so much from online research and you tube videos on soap making. I never thought about it as a art form but it is. I am preparing to do my 1st hot process soap. It is a different process that does not need a 4 week time frame to age the soap. I day dream about the different products that I can come up with. Wow, this time last year I was not having soap dream, but what a difference a year can make.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

My 2nd batch of soap!

Today I made my 1st batch of soap using the cold process method. This simply means that the only heat used is created when the lye transform the oil into soap thru a chemical reaction. This is sapoinfication. I enjoyed the whole process. I have been reading lots of soap making
books and watching videos on YouTube of the technique. The actual soap making process went quickly, the setup took the longest. I forgot to snap a picture before I covered the soap. I will post a picture tomorrow. I think I have found my "Maine" craft. It is A-Maine-zing!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A change in Thanksgiving plans!

Thanksgiving is one of our families favorite holidays. We have personally hosted Thanksgiving in our home for the past 20 years. Well this is the 1st year that no one will be joining our family of four. With our recent move to Maine a few months ago the new distance is to long for some to drive and to expensive for a plane trip with a short stay. We are going to miss the hugs, laughter, game playing, late night talking and memories awaken from viewing old pictures. Yet as a believer in Christ, I know that everything operates in divine order. I encourage my family to not just think about what we will miss but think about the positive moments we will have. With just the four of us we will be able to go to bed when we are tired the night before and wake up on Thanksgiving when we are actually ready to get up. We will take our time to prepare food and not worry about clearing the table. My husband and I can stretch out and nap together on the couch.

Yes the plan for Thanksgiving is not what we are use to but we will embrace it and be thankful!

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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The beginning of the day

I am a morning person. I enjoy watching the sunrise, being the 1st one up and inhaling the crisp morning air. Daylight savings is appreciated now. It makes the morning walks easy. Walking my dog in the morning is not just a duty but a great benefit to me. I get exercise and I've met a lot of neighbors. Most mornings I begin with prayer, praise and reading the bible. Next I take a walk, today as I walked I thought of all the people that I was thankful for. Since we just moved here a few months ago most of the people on my list are miles away from me. Yet because of my morning walks I have actually met a lot of new friends. The beginning of the day is the best part of my day.

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Monday, November 19, 2012

The decline of the bookstores

I am not happy to see the decline of the bookstores. Yes I do have a iPad with IBook and a Kindle app but I also have hundreds of books. My husband and I debate about ebooks and real books. He feels they are becoming obsolete I totally disagree. My husband is a foodie. I am a book lover. When I lived in Memphis a favorite pastime on Saturdays was to go to a estate sale to buy books. I was always able to find something of interest from parenting to expensive art books. I was a bit disappointed when we moved to Maine. Only a few estate sales on the weekend and even fewer bookstores. Where would I go for books. Praise God for libraries not only can I get my books but the library in my community has the best reading room. You can sit for hours reading. My husband and I actually did that on Saturday. He sat and read a book and a magazine. He brought his Ipad but never took it out. I left my Ipad at home charging up for my late night reading.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Rolling bed race

Decided to take a walk with hubby to Maine st and arrived just in time to see the Bowdoin college annual bedrace.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

My 1st batch of soap!!

I am too excited. I have wanted to make soap for over 10 years. Since our move to Maine I encounter many people who are crafters. I begin to pull out my soap books that I accumulated over the years. Then I took a plunge. I made a simple re-batched coffee soap. It is not very pretty but it is A-Maine-zing!!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The bravest thing I've ever did is give birth

On the Holmes and Rahe scale of life stressors pregnancy rated number 12. I personally had a stress free pregnancy. I was not sick, gained appropriate weight and my hair was growing. I have faith in God so I prayed for God's grace for a great pregnancy.

Well the test of my faith and bravery begin the moment I went into labor. One of my struggles at that time was weakness. I was not strong. I easily got frighten or "chicken-out" of something. I was now in a situation were I had to see it to the finish.
As my labor pains increased I requested a epidural. I anxiously anticipated the relief from this unbearable pain. My friends had me convinced that once I had a epidural all pain would cease. Unfortunately they were wrong! Not only did my pain not stop but the doctors pricked me 7 times trying to do the epidural. I ended up screaming our daughter into the world. The pain decreased immediately after her birth.

My husband and mother commended me on my bravery. I did not see it that way. I had no other options but to push her out. Yet since having her and raising my now 15 year old I do see it as the bravest thing I ever done. She's A-Maine-zing!

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Monday, November 12, 2012

My favorite spot to blog

I have always enjoyed writing and have over 46 journals, poems, short story and a unfinished novel to prove it. In 2009 I began Blogging about my daughter's cooking and it has become one of my favorite things. I was living in TN and was drawn to blog in the kitchen. There was a large window that looked out at the pool, flower pots, japanese Maples and a bird feeder. I was easily inspired.

In Maine I find myself blogging in the living room during the day. The living room has a wall of windows that pours out lots of morning light. I Look Outside toward the windows there is a forest with a trail that always beckons you to come outside.

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Friday, November 9, 2012

The one thing I want to change in my life is..

Procrastination! I have hung out to long with this vice. I want to complete more goals. Since moving to Maine everyday is a new adventure. With so many new things to do my old habit of procrastination is growing. Why? I revisited a great book that I purchased titled "Eat that Frog" by Brian Tracy. The author instructs readers to go after that big ugly thing that is staring you in the face. There is no going around the things that need to be done. If we go and do the big one right now we will have time to do more things. If I could rid myself of procrastination the sky would be the limit of what I could do.

Who knows with more to do list done I can actually spend time learning about the trees I hurry past when I walk my dog thru the beautiful trails in Maine!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Our 1st snow in Maine

Wow! It's 34 degrees and the wind is strong. Our early morning walk to the bus stop was a challenge due to the Unshoveled snowy sidewalk. Yet we were all dressed properly for the occasion. The streets were quite clear from early morning shoveling.

Now that the children & hubby are gone for the day I thought about the benefits of working from home. I can stay put is #1 for me.

The Blogher prompt today wants to know about your dream job. I feel I am in my dream job: being a stay-at-home mom. But if I had to choose a job outside of the home I would be a curator over a unique contemporary museum. I've always enjoyed art, biography and history.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The last compliment I received was today.

I don't remember receiving lots of compliments when I was young. I remember lots of corrections. It was not until my early 20's when I met my husband a wonderful, honorable,strong,wise,tall and handsome guy that I begin to receive compliments. Every time I was in his presence he would compliment something about me. It took me a moment to receive this as genuine since I was not accustomed to this. Now at 22 years of married bliss my husband has not wavered. It might not be everyday but I continued to hear "you are beautiful, I am a blessed man, thanks for being my wife"
There is a scripture that says "He will restore all the years the locust have eaten". Over these years my old empty bowl of no compliment is now a full over flowing fountain.

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Tuesday, November 6, 2012

As President of the United States my 1st act would be.......

As president of the United States my 1st act in office would be Implementing nationwide Greenhouse communities. Millions of people are starving from lack of nutrients. Foods laden with fat and starch are often empty of nutrition. A Healthy body must consume whole foods. Whole foods are foods that are unprocessed and unrefined or processed and refined as little as possible. Fruits and vegetables are whole foods. Also raw honey,non-homogenized milk and organic grass feed meats. Unfortunately many know about their need for whole foods but are not easily able to access these foods due to where they live. My act would ensure that a greenhouse is in walking distance to every citizen of the United States.

I want to ensure my readers that I am not running for office yet but I am trying to write a blog post each day thanks to the blog prompts provided by

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Monday, November 5, 2012

Tomorrow's elections

I am still somewhat new to blogging well considering that my 1st blog began 2009 let's just say I am new to consistent blogging. I stumbled upon a website called Blogher and they do daily prompts so I decided to join in, beginning today.

Today's question ask about your thoughts on the election. Tired, & ready to elect the next president. I feel your pain 4 year old Abigail whose mom posted her daughter's feelings on YouTube.I certainly watched more debates this time then I remember. I am still reading about the issues in my state. As a Christian I believe in the power of prayer for everything particularly wisdom.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

I love Sunday & daylight saving

How wonderful to get up when you have fully awoken. As the weather becomes a little colder here daylight will be a welcomed friend.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Daylight savings!!!

I have been looking forward to the change in time particularly because of our morning walks to the bus stop. It is dark and cold. I know that this is to be expected in Maine but I'm not ready yet. So thankyou Lord for a beautiful sunrise last week.