The Metal Chair with a New Cushion



This is how the new cushion looks on the metal chair.  When I first finished sewing the cushion I used regular stuffing which made the cushion look pregnant and too puffy.  I took all of the stuffing out and replaced it with five layers of a blanket I cut up using the same pattern used in the earlier post.

The side pillows were actually one pillow I cut in half.

I’ve found a tiny studio apartment in Reno, Nevada. Along with this little apartment, I’m trying something new…tiny house living.  It should be a good adventure.

Have a good week!

Making a Pattern


It’s Saturday, and I’ve got it in my head I need to make a cushion for this metal chair.  This is what I’ve done so far.  I taped notebook paper together in the shape of the chair.  I already have the upholstery fabric I want to use.

I realize this metal chair looks broken, but it’s not.  It has a sturdy swivel black metal base supported by four roller wheels. I found this chair in a metal salvage yard for $50.00.  The only thing other than the cushion I added were the arm rests, which are made of oak pieces of wood

I’ll show you what it looks like when the cushion is done.

Happy Saturday!  I hope it’s a good one.


I Did It! I Have a Place to Park a Car!


After three months of steady work, I have a place to park a car in the garage!

I made 8-10 trips to Marion County Recycling Center.  Each trip home my car looked like this:

One Empty Trunk

Today, a friend helped me by taking a load of broken furniture and junk to the Marion County Dump. I really appreciate the empty space.


After my friend left, I loaded up some old metal barn door pieces from the back yard and went to Cherry City Metals in Salem. I made $3.40 on my load. The process of dropping the metal off was pretty easy.  Recycling metal for money is new to me; it’s good to try new things.

 I’m trying to figure out how to recycle VCR Tapes, CD’s, Cassette Tapes, and books.  I’ve dropped off a load to Good will, but I have more to go. I can’t seem to figure out why I found like 20 pillows in all kinds of weird places in the garage.  They all have to go, too.

This has been a 15 year goal for me, and it’s sweet, so sweet, to have this garage space.

 Happy Friday!

I Give Thanks…


I give thanks when I see resilience in action.

-A parent helping to support their child through college when he had to pay his own way through school.

-A parent goes on to be a thoughtful grand parent and great grand parent when her parents died when she was in high school, and she had no one to support her when she was raising her children.

-A college professor who brings his undergraduate students together to paint a house for a neighbor when he spent his childhood living as a missionary child with only one parent in a country in Africa.

-A teacher who never took a trip outside of the U.S. quietly financially supports several students to take a school trip to Europe.

I love catching people in quiet moments doing for others what was not done for them in  fresh, new ways and with no regrets. This is what I call pure hopefulness.

I took the above picture at sunrise this morning in Reno, Nevada.

Happy Thursday!

Artwork Made by Rachel


Artwork Made by One of My Students ~Rachel, Grade 8,

In sorting through my teaching things in the garage, I found this cool water painting. The painting has such a playful, cartoon, and bubble gum young feel to it.  I give thanks for Rachel…I hope she is enjoying her adult years of life now.

I loved the playful work my students turned in for art assignments.  There was something thoughtful and playful happening at the same time.  When it came to grading these kinds of assignments…I was looking for something original, creative, and made by the student.


Regarding The Garage Cleaning

I’ve made about 8 trips to the Marion County Recycling Center to literally throw unused metal, mixed paper, cardboard, computer towers and monitors, plastics, paint cans, and batteries in collection containers.  Each time I leave the recycling area…I take in a big breath, because my car is empty.  It feels wonderful.  Slowly, I get a rush of emotion like some people do when they come off of an amusement roller coaster… I think to myself, “I want to do that again.”  Clearing out areas of the garage has been dirty and messy and not without its sentimental moments. Slowly though, a glimmer of hope is taking shape, because there are new things to come, new ways to use this over sized two car garage with a work shop area. I can feel the intuitive part of my thinking beginning to turn over new ideas.  Letting go of my notebooks from high school, college, and my notes from teaching has reminded me of my desire to learn new things.  These ideas haven’t taken any concrete shape yet.  All I know is I want to study, take more classes, and learn more things.  Perhaps with a third or fourth degree, I will have my future all worked out. In the mean time, thanks for joining me on this journey; this has been a true journey of discovery.

I think bloggers are like the radio DJ’s I listened to in the past. Radio DJ’s  were these people that had a command of our time and of our entertainment.  People who had a connection with their audience through one sensory organ…hearing. Larger than life people…people with humor and bravado.  People who always surprised me when I met them, because somehow their physical person didn’t usually match the person I thought their voice sounded like in my mind.  The dissonance always threw me, until the DJ would talk…and then I would be soothed by the sound of his or her voice.

My guess is if people who read my blog met me in person, they would experience this same cognitive dissonance.  People, like life, rarely turn out to be what we thought they would be like.

One of the reasons I am a blogger is because I have felt a tug on my heart to find the joyful and beautiful things in life and share what I’ve found.  I look for that sweet moment each day when I’m struck with how beautiful this place is, or the sweetness of a person I’ve met, or the craft work of someone’s hands touches me. I look for or an event that both lightens and warms my heart at the same time.  These moments lift me out of my daily life and have created a joyful path for me to follow over the years.  The sharing of these moments is the purpose and shape of my blog.

Thanks for taking in what I’ve been discovering about life.

Happy Sunday!






Letting Go Update


Picture taken by Ben Guenther

“When the spirit does not work with the hand there is no art.”  -Leonardo daVinci

I want to share an update on my Lenten challenge of getting rid of unused items and cleaning out the garage. The work of sorting the garage came with the job of going through the boxes of my teaching material.  In my school materials, I found this picture taken by Ben Guenther who was one of my students.  He turned in this picture on a poster board for an art assignment back in the day.  I think this picture is striking…and I like how Ben caught this butterfly in such a majestic way.  I have more student art work to share in upcoming posts.

My Lenten cleaning challenge is about 60% complete. I have successfully moved about 5-10 big pieces of furniture to a relative who needed furniture.  It was fun to watch the 2 Papasan chairs, a couch, a work table, a set of bunk beds, a set of Corelle dishes, extra silverware, linens, etc, all loaded up on a truck.

I am planning a garage sale, a delivery of TY stuffed animals to my daughter’s house in Reno, a delivery of teaching supplies to a fellow teacher friend, a trip to the recycling center and a trip to the city dump.  After I’ve sorted through the garage, I am looking forward to parking a car on at least one side.

By far the hardest things for me to let go of are the boxes of my children’s art work and school papers.  I have a strong connection to that time of life.  It’s taken me years to let go of these papers.  Once I realized my children don’t want their special drawings from 1st grade, it struck me it really was time to let them go.

I’m determined to stop holding on to things and live in a more present and a more minimalistic style.

This process of “Letting go” has been very cathartic.

Happy Monday!




John’s Crazy Socks: March 21 Honoring National Down Syndrome Day


March 21 is  National Down Syndrome Day 

My sister, Patti, works at John’s Crazy Socks in New York.  She loves working at John’s Crazy Socks and often works with John one of the Co-Founders of the company.   John has Down Syndrome.

I am highlighting this cool sock shop, because I admire the vision behind the company. Patti told me the story of how the company started when John’s Dad hypothetically asked his son one day, “If you could sell anything, what would you sell?  And John said, “Socks.”  John’s idea turned into a business.

All kinds of crazy, zany, and fun varieties of socks can be found at their website:

John's Crazy Socks

Patti sent me this picture of the Sasquatch Loves Oregon Knee High Socks!  They’re so cute!

Patti is amazed with how everybody’s birthday in the company is celebrated; she enjoys the special Friday lunches, and invests energy in drawing a new design of socks for a contest held by the company.

John’s Crazy Socks has been featured on BBC and other news stations.  Found here:

Found on Facebook:  

On a side note, I just watched a segment cBig Dreams, Small Spaces on Netflix about a famous British gardener, Monty Dons, who helps people with their gardens.   One family featured on the show made a special sensory garden for their child who has Down’s Syndrome.  What I thought was so cool…was this particular family planted three apple trees that have an extra set of chromosomes called Triploid to honor their child.  Several varieties of apples with the Triploid Chromosome are Jonagold, Winesap, Mutsu, and Gravenstein Apples (more information found at

Wishing you a great week!