November 21, 2011

Building a Stronger Community: Being Thankful

This originally appeared on my blog, The World We Wish For, enjoy!

Being thankful is sort of a theme this week, right? At least in the United States, that is. But I bet many of us forget to be thankful the other 51 weeks of the year. It's very easy to get caught up in all of the things that we don't have or that have gone wrong in our lives, but everyone always has something they can be thankful for. I'm not naive, I know times are tough for a lot of people in the world. Even in the toughest of times, though, there is something for you to be thankful for. Take a moment and consider your life. Are you healthy? Do you have a roof over your head? Do you have a great family? Do you have at least one wonderful friend? Do you have a job you love? Do you have a hobby you love? If you answered yes to just one of those questions, then you have something to be thankful for every day of the year.

If we make an effort to be thankful for something every day, it will become second nature to look on the bright side and remember that we are all lucky for what we have, as meager as it may seem some days. Once we are able to be thankful, we are able to share more of ourselves with those who have less than we do. As we share ourselves, we pass along the gift of thankfulness and build a stronger, happier community.

I want to thank each and every one of you for reading. I am thankful for your support!

November 20, 2011

Sunday Meditation

Frugality is one of the most beautiful and joyful words in the English language, and yet one that we are culturally cut off from understanding and enjoying. The consumption society has made us feel that happiness lies in having things, and has failed to teach us the happiness of not having things. 
-Elise Boulding

November 7, 2011

Fun Fall Decor

A few weeks ago, my son had some homework. He was to go on a nature walk around town and collect objects for the class to work with at their science table. While we were out, I also collected some items. Here's the first project I did, yarn acorns. They're going to look adorable scattered on my table!

They're really easy. Just make a small ball of yarn and attach it to the acorn cap with a dot of good adhesive.

November 6, 2011

Sunday Meditation

Let us not look back in anger, nor forward in fear, but around in awareness.
-James Thurber

November 4, 2011

New Online Store

Some of you probably remember that I had an online store to sell my ceramics and polymer clay. Sadly, I no longer have access to the kiln where I was firing my ceramic work. Until I have a place to put one of my own, I'm switching things up a bit. My new store is called Mark Your Words and centers around all things wordy. There will be bookmarks, yarn-wrapped letters, beautiful dry erase boards, ornaments, jewelry, etc. My ceramics and polymer will show up from time to time, as well. I hope you all stop by and take a look. I'm pushing to build stock for the holidays, so come find a stocking stuffer for a loved one or a little treasure for yourself!

Fan my Facebook page and get in on some great coupons and giveaways that are happening through the end of the year!

November 1, 2011

Building a Stronger Community: Make Extra and Share

This was originally posted on my blog, The World We Wish For, enjoy!

We are coming into a period of time where multiple religious and secular holidays converge, along with all of the things that go with holidays and celebrations. Many of these celebrations include food. Some include the giving of gifts. In both cases, some of us go overboard (I'm looking at you cookie bakers everywhere!).  Instead of lamenting how much of what you baked, cooked, canned, pickled, etc is going to go to waste (or to "waist" if you, like me, try to eat it all yourself) why not share it. You could make your neighbor's day with a box of your special cookies. You could deliver some goodies to a school, office or shelter. No matter where you decide to share the fruits of your labor, they will be appreciated!

Now, I hear some of you telling me that you don't bake, cook, can, pickle...I get it, no problem. Do you knit, crochet or sew? Check with local shelters and schools. They are often looking for scarves, mittens and hats this time of year for folks that need them. Do you do other crafts? Donate some to a school's or church's craft fair. They'll be happy for the extras to use as raffle prizes or gifts for their workers. Do you love scrapbooking? Use some of your scraps to make bookmarks and donate them to your local library for their patrons. The possibilities are really endless.

The holidays are often thought of as a time of excess, but with a little creativity and a bit of community-building spirit, the holidays can be a time when EVERYONE has just exactly as much as they need.
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