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Affirmation and Inspiration - Artisan Handmade Three for Thursday

 

 

“More smiling, less worrying. More compassion, less judgment. More blessed, less stressed. More love, less hate.” 

― Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart



 

In these days which seem filled with words of hate and division, it’s sometimes hard to remember that there is MUCH more good in this world than there is bad.  We just have to be aware of it. The smile of a friend or stranger. An unexpected helping hand. A kind word. Being strong in the face of adversity. That’s why I love the quote above . . . and sometimes use it as my mantra while doing some deep breathing to slow down my sometimes very active monkey mind.

Colours by Donovan - Three for Thursday

 

 

A couple of days ago, while I was picking up some veggies and fruit from our local Whole Foods, I keyed in on a song that was playing in the background - a song I loved waaaaay back when.  When I got home, I looked it up on YouTube, played the video and then let the mix of music from the mid-60’s to early 70’s continue playing. Brought back to many happy, and some sad, memories.  One of the songs that played was Donovan Leitch’s “Colours,” a song I adored then and still adore now. I get lost in the peaceful lyrics, the lovely simplicity of the folk guitar accompaniment and Donovan's hauntingly beautiful voice.  The song was released in 1965 and, 54 years later, is still a classic. I have played it over and over since “rediscovering” it. The lyrics are shared near the end of the post.

 

Here’s a link to the YouTube video (version without harmonica): 

Donovan’s “Colours” 1965  

 

And here’s an incredible live version of the song with Pete Seeger sitting in on banjo: 

Donovan "Colours" 1966

A Moment of Zen - Three for Thursday

 

 

Anyone who knows me well knows that I love to garden, mainly growing flowers.  There is so gloriously fundamental about putting my hands in the living soil and planting something that will benefit bees, butterflies and/or hummingbirds (my way to decide what to plant - plus drought tolerance once established is a must since we live in the Chihuahuan Desert).  Planting and tending to the plants is my meditation and I experience many moments of Zen when I feel deeply connected to myself, to others and to Mother Earth.

 

Just what is “Zen?”  It’s to explain, especially when it is often tossed around so carelessly in popular culture (maybe like I just did above).  Zen is an authentic spiritual tradition, a path to an awakening: awakening to / realizing who we really are, and awakening the aspiration to serve others and take responsibility for all of life.  Zen is believed to be our true nature expressing itself moment by moment.

Make it an Artisan Handmade Mothers Day - Week 7

 

 

Week 7 of the Mother’s Day Countdown - 2019 has come and gone like a flash.  Since Mother’s Day will be here before you know it (here in a flash), now is the time to start shopping for that perfect handmade gift for Mom.  Hosted by Julie and Harry of Blue Morning Expressions on their The Blu Print blog, the Countdown to Mother’s Day is a perfect place to start your shopping!  Each week, handmade artists share up to three of their unique items, each one a perfect gift for even the hardest to please Mom. This week, a total of 36 artisan items were shared on the Countdown from 12 handmade artists.  Browse all the wonderful handmade shares for Week 7, visit the shops of the artists featured and buy your Mom a unique beauty that was handmade from the heart.

Handmade Valentines Day Jewelry Gift Ideas - Three for Thursday

 

 

Love recognizes no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps fences, penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.  

-- Maya Angelou



 

Valentine’s Day will be here before we know - a day filled with pink and red, hearts, candy, cards and other tokens of love.  Speaking of tokens of love, I thought I’d pull together some charming artisan handmade jewelry from three different artists in this new post of Three for Thursday.  The first two jewelry selections are heart themed, but with a difference. Just in case, however, hearts aren’t your thing or your loved ones “thing,” then I also included a third item that would make a superb gift but that isn’t overtly Valentines-y.

Autumn Artisan Handmade Gift Ideas - Three for Thursday

 

 

According to the calendar, we're about ½ way through autumn, the favorite time of year for many people.  I live in the Desert Southwest and most people don’t associate the desert with fall color. But we have it!  Granted not as eye catching as the forests in along the East Coast or the aspens in many places in the Rockies.  Color is here, nonetheless: glowing yellows and reds and purples of the deciduous trees.  And my amazing cosmos are looming up a storm with carmine reds, pale pinks and glowing white.  The hummingbirds left about a month ago (always sad to see them go) but new migrant birds are showing up, especially the cheerful little juncos.  Am waiting for the beautiful blue scrub jays with their raucous calls and jaunty attitudes to show up under the bird feeders.

Need Some Love - Artisan Handmade

 

 

 

There is something ALL handmade artists go through:  you design a beautiful piece of jewelry, or create a fabulous painting, or crochet an intricate piece of table art, or . . . the list goes on and on.  You have put so much of yourself into the piece, you love it and you are sure it will sell very, very quickly. Unfortunately, there it still sits in your shop . . . and you have no idea why!

Unique Artisan Handmade - Three for Thursday

 

 

The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul. 

Dieter Uchtdorf


 

Two weeks have already flown . . . and here it is, time for another Three for Thursday blog post.  Three wonderful handmade items from three different artists are featured. The artists highlighted this week are:  Marcia of MarciaMcKinzieArt with unique watercolor batik paintings (I chose all beautiful landscapes); a wide range of fiber crafts by Jacki of Christie Cottage; and unique boho style jewelry by me, Catherine of Shadow Dog Designs.  If something catches your eye, please be sure to click on the photo or the link below the picture to be taken to the item for more photos and information. I hope you enjoy the unique artisan handmade items featured below. And, remember:  BUY HANDMADE!

Necklaces and Earrings - New Jewelry from Shadow Dog Designs

 

 

That's the thing with handmade items. They still have the person's mark on them, and when you hold them, you feel less alone.

 

Aimee Bender, The Color Master: Stories


 

I love the idea that when you hold a handmade item, that you feel less alone.  I hope that everyone who wears a piece of my handmade jewelry feels that way! The one of a kind jewelry definitely has my “mark” with many good wishes and peaceful intentions added.

School Daze - Wonderful Handmade Wednesday on Indiemade

 

 

When I drive the back way to Spa for Paws, where Seamus goes to romp and play with his doggie friends three days a week, we pass by an elementary school.  Today I noticed on the school sign that the first day of school is August 13, with teachers back at school August 3!!! What??? No wonder I have been bombarded with “back to school” brochures and coupons in the mail. I imagine that there a huge amount of ads on regular TV, but since I only watch PBS, NetFlix or the like, I don’t see them.  Thank heavens for that! But it sure seems awfully early for school to begin. Where has the summer gone???

 

The school sign prompted the theme for today’s Wonderful Handmade Wednesday on Indiemade, titled School Daze.  The artisan handmade items chosen will be welcome “just because” first day of school gifts, to help counteract the daze of school starting up again.  The meaningful, unique items chosen span a wide range of ages, from kindergarten/first grade through high school. I hope one of the beauties goes to school that first day!

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