Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Spell Has Broken!

Yippee Skippy!  I embroidered a little bear nose yesterday evening using a new technique, a sharp doll's needle, and all turned out well.  Thank goodness the dry spell seems to be finally over!

Since I seem to have returned to the realm of bears, now would be a good time to FINALLY show you some TBAI photos from nearly 2 weeks ago.  It was absolutely wonderful meeting all of these people that I have come to know through the internet.  I just can't wait to see them all again!

Look at ALL of these wonderful HATS!



Yours truly with dear Ginger of Bearbits.  She and her dear husband, Jay, took me under their wing for the weekend and introduced me to so many wonderful people.  Meeting Ginger was one of the highlights of my trip.  She is just so warm, sweet, and welcoming--exactly like her adorable bears and wonderful blog.


 
Here's Ginger and her sweet husband, Jay, at her booth on the big day.


 
Yes, me again, but this time I'm with Elanor of Shantock Bears.  I really ejnoyed getting to know Elanor and her dear one, Lex.  How I wish I could live near all of these wonderful people, but, alas, Elanor and Lex live in England.  Hopefully we'll be able to see them in their neck of the woods someday.  I know our girls are voting for that!


 
And, of course, one can never forget dear, sweet Darlene of Raspbeary Bears! Here she is surrounded by her lovely bears.  She is just SO thoughtful and sweet--you can't say enough wonderful things about Darlene!


 
Here's a great shot of Tyler of Teds 'n Such with two of his critters in the background. It was a real joy to get to know him.  You just have to check out his blog HERE.


 
It was so wonderful to meet Daphne of Back Road Bears. The weekend was SO busy--my one regret was not having enough time to spend talking and getting to know sweet Daphne better.


 
Our girls really loved seeing all of the amazing bears at the show, but I believe the highlight of the bear show for them was being introduced to and talking with their favorite teddy bear mystery writer, John J. Lamb!

Life is GOOD!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Favorites on Fridays and Some Extra Thoughts

This past week I read "Gift from the Sea" by Anne Morrow Lindbergh again.  (If you click on the title it will take you to Amazon.)  It's been many years since the last time I read it, and I am again struck by its relevance and insight.  Each time I read it, I take away something new.  This time simplicity is tumbling about in my mind. 
Simplicity.  It's a rather small word, but it applies to so many aspects of life--our schedules, our homes, our surroundings, our life.  It's rather astonishing.  I know that the more simple I keep things in my life, the happier and more content I am.  I think this lesson has really hit home extra hard this past week as we watch yet another dump truck being loaded up with stuff from across the street.

A dear neighbor died this past January, and her house is now officially (as of this past weekend) owned by a roofer who will be cleaning it up and remodeling it in order sell it again.  I have been impressed that he has really tried to find new homes for as much stuff as possible. It's not been unusual this week to see an extra car, or two, or three parked on the street and being filled to the brim with baskets, chairs, and whatnot.

Since Tuesday, he and his team have already loaded two dump trucks full of stuff that have went off to the landfill.  Unfortunately, I expect there will be at least 2 to 3 more dump truck loads (if not considerably more) to be carried away before they are finished cleaning out the house.  I suppose that's not TOO bad considering that his team is ripping out old carpeting and stuff.  However, before the house was auctioned, the auctioneers loaded up TWO dumpsters to the brim, and my neighbor's family hauled out enough garbage and stuff to fill at least another one or two dumpsters.  AND, of course, there were ALL of the things that were sold in the auction itself.  Stuff.  Stuff and more stuff.  It has completely boggled my mind.

So, in the past month, I find myself looking around our house and re-evaluating our stuff.  I never want to leave my children with such a burden.  But, in addition to that, I don't want my family to LIVE with such a burden in their daily lives.  Such a heavy weight.  My neighbor's house had been completely filled from top to bottom with small paths that snaked through the rooms. 

Simplicity.  Such a seemingly small word with such big meanings in my mind and life at this moment.

Warmly,
Cheryl

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

TBAI Times

Well, I'm back from TBAI.  It was a wonderful event, and I thoroughly enjoyed meeting all of the bear makers and collectors.  The level of workmanship at all of the tables was TRULY inspiring and amazing.

As much as I enjoyed it, I must admit to being "bear'd" out now.  I really expected to come home just buzzing with enthusiasm, ideas, and creativity.  Instead, I'm rather weary and fatigued--I've lost my zest.  I know it will come back to some extent soon, but I'm surprised by my lack of ambition.

I just ADORED meeting everyone at the show--I'll share some photos in one of my next posts.  While there, I even convinced myself that I must do a show in the future.  Since then, however, I've come to the conclusion that I'm just not cut out to do shows.  I appear to be barely cut out just to attend one!  Hopefully, I will perk up soon.

Warmly,
Cheryl

Thursday, August 12, 2010

My Tribute to the Mad Hatter

I'm off to the Teddy Bear Artist Invitational (TBAI) today in Binghamton!  This year's theme is "Alice in Wonderland" and we are all supposed to wear our "mad hats."  Well, after some searching I found a sweet black vintage hat and added sparkles, a fun ribbon, some pom-pom trim, and a rhinestone buckle that I added a glittered felt bear to.  I thought I was all done and set it aside.

Then one day we watched "My Fair Lady."  Oh my goodness!  Do you remember the scene at the Ascot Horse Races where all the women are wearing these outrageous hats.  My hat was put perfectly to shame!  Back to the drawing board!  Most everything that I had already put onto the hat stayed, but it needed MORE.  It needed much more "MUCHNESS."  So after playing with a lot of tulle and feathers, this is what my hat looks like now.
It may be TOO much now, but, alas, it is time to go and will have to do.  It definitely has that Ascot-flavor though now!
Warmly,
Cheryl

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Another Fabulous Giveaway!

I can't believe that I almost forgot ANOTHER giveaway that you MUST check out!  Emma's Bears is giving away these TWO little lovelies.  Zoom over there quick by clicking HERE!

Giveaways That Must Be Seen

Here are two giveaways that you just HAVE to check out!
Susan of Crowsnest Pass Primitive Folk Art is giving away this cute little blue mouse on August 14th.  Click HERE to zoom on over to her blog called Mouse Droppings.

 
And Pudra Studio is giving away this adorable little bear on October 2nd.  Click HERE, my dear travelers.

Good luck to all of you!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Favorites on Fridays

Today I'm celebrating the birthday of one of my absolute favorite persons--my dear, dear, sweet Matthew.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

I'm Becoming as Mad as the Hatter!

I think I'm going BONKERS!  I've been resting my hands and they are feeling better.  They get sore very easily though, so I know that I'd better rest them some more.  But I think I'm going BONKERS! 

When I'm tired and have energy for little else, I've been finding myself searching through Etsy, eBay, Amazon, and "who knows where else" for ANYTHING.  Anything to do.  Anything to buy.  Anything to make.  Anything to learn. 

Just yesterday, I had almost convinced myself that I really wanted to learn how to make molded felt faced dolls.  I even found a kit to start out with.   And the day before that I ordered "Anatomy of a Doll" from Amazon.  I even figured that I could change my name to "Bingle Bears, Babes, and Buddies."  I think I'm losing my mind. 

Well, let's put it this way.  I've really enjoyed making the doll I'm working on ... and I do know that I will finish little Lizzie.  And I have committed to making an Izannah Walker doll with our youngest this fall.  BUT ...  I'm really not much of a doll person.  Never have been.  I don't think I ever will be.  I can see myself making the occasional doll, but not all the time.

ACK!  I have GOT to start making bears soon or I might go completely over the bend.

Heaps of Hugs,
Cheryl