Thursday, July 16, 2009

hey all you Artsy Mamas: Creative input needed!

I have three separate projects in the works and I was hoping for some creative input from all of you lovely mamas who read my blog!

1. A couple of years ago, a very special person in my world passed away. She lived in the house across the street from me, with her daughter and her granddaughter. She helped raise her granddaughter, who also happened to be my very best friend for many many years. And even though she had plenty of her own grandchildren and great grandchildren, she had plenty of room in her heart and her life for me. She wasn't a soft lady or even an affectionate one. But she was always there to listen and offer a word of advice. At her funeral, the family had me and my kids walk in and sit with the rest of the grandkids which meant the world to me. Having very little family ties of my own, it meant so much that everyone in her family acknowledged how much she meant to me. A few weeks after she passed, I was given three special items, handpicked just for me from her belongings... a brightly colored crocheted afghan, an orange beaded hanging plant holder, and this:Isn't it lovely? The beads are on what looks like a jute or hemp rope. Well, I want to really start using it but it simply doesn't hang right. I know very little about assembling jewelry and I was hoping that someone out there might be able to offer suggestions about what I could do with these lovely beads so that one day I could hand them down to my daughter.

2. Here is my coffee table. With a bunch of junk on it. I am thinking of giving it a make over. My first solution is always decoupage. Anybody have a better idea?

3. On Monday, Artsy Mamas (Okay, I) will be leading two back-to-back mother/daughter creative writing workshops at our local library. I'm really excited about this opportunity to come back into my community with a fun activity and try to get my organization off the ground again. What do I need from you? Your ideas! If you and your daughter (ages 8 and up) were to attend a creative writing workshop together, what would you like to accomplish? What would you like to be able to take away from the experience that you could incorporate into your daily lives, into your relationship? What are some of your favorite writing prompts or ideas? Any and all input is appreciated! Brainstorming comments are allowed!

I can't wait to read all of your fun and fabulous ideas!!


  1. put the beads in a shadow box. That will keep them safe and a cute way to display them. You could have them by themselves or put them with other special things.

    And for the coffee table, only thing I can think of is to paint it. Your idea sounds better! (or do both) Maybe paint it a color (maybe red) and then decoupage your favorite photos in black and white (maybe? what you think?)

  2. Thinking on the coffee table still...

    as far as the writing project goes, what I think would be really cool would be a daily or weekly journal type activity. You and your daughter can do it together (opening it to younger ages that may not be able to write stories just yet). Write a "story" about something that happened to you that day or week. You can embellish it and make it pure fiction, but the main event is something that happened for real. With older kids, it could be a daily or so thing, and you alternate days, but your story has to go together. (instead of being a collection of short stories, each day's entry is a chapter in a novel)
    With older kids, this gives you a little more insight into her days and life, and also does the same for her in regards to you, but without the awkward 20 Questions with monosyllabic answers typical of teens. :-)

  3. I don't have any suggestions, but I wanted to tell you that I really love the idea of the mother/daughter workshop! I hope to do something like that when my daughter is older. Great idea.

  4. I would do something like, "Why you are so great.." as a topic. Also, my great grandma had a table with a piece of glass on it, and under the glass was an ever changing mosaic of photos and "found" objects. I loved it, and always want one. You could easily and cheaply get a piece of glass cut and rounded for the table. ORRRR, you could bring it here, and I can help you mosaic it for real. That is fun and cheap, too.

  5. coffee table--I like the glass idea--or maybe some kind of heavy plexiglass even--and you could turn it into a kind of seasonal nature display with leaves or flowers pressed under it. That way the bigger kids could collect and display without the baby destroying it all. :)

    If you like the beads a lot, you should just restring them. It can't be too difficult. Get the string and clasp at a craft store and look up a video on how to tie the knots, if nobody you know can show you. There pretty; I'd want to wear 'em & I'm not even a jewelry person.

    creative writing ideas? uh...good luck. ;)

  6. THANK YOU all for the feedback. I think that I'm going to go with the plexi glass idea. As much as I am tempted to take it to Courtney's house for mosaic, I know that the kids would prefer that the table top remain smooth for when they like to color or draw there. The nature/photos/found objects idea is perfect. As a matter of fact, I remembered that in the attic we have a coffee table that belonged to my husband's grandmother, who is still living. We got it when my brother in law, who had taken it, moved out of his apartment. It's sooo awesome, with a glass framed top. I used to put our wedding photos in it. But once H started toddling, we put it away. So, what a perfect way to recapture that experience, only safely!

    Will let you all know how the writing workshop goes. :)

    And surely I can find someone who can help me correctly restring these beads. I want to wear them... maybe make matching earrings too. ;)


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