~ A Simple Washcloth ~ A little cotton yarn, a hook … and a new perspective emerges

 

I’ve been taking a lot for granted lately, and feeling quite glum at times while doing so.  Then, scrolling through my Facebook feed, I saw an interesting post from a lady in a crochet group I joined.  Her post was sharing a request for people to crochet 10-inch square washcloths for a mission in Africa.

As I continued reading through the post, and of how something so simple and basic is not had by many that the mission helps, I was both humbled, and convicted (you know, that slight, digging sensation deep in your innermost being that nags at you until you see your error and feel truly remorseful).

It appeared that the drive was locally-based, but I wanted to contribute if it were possible.  Thankfully a lady in the group said I could mail any I chose to make to her, and she’d pass them along to the person hosting the drive along with hers.  Yay 🙂 (and thank you again, Brenda Jo 🙂 )

I set out to make 10 of the 10-inch washcloths, and had such a meaningful time making them.  I was glad to contribute.  I was glad that I could be part of the drive, even though I lived out of the area in which it was being run, and I was further glad that I was being part of something that was both helping another, and pulling me out of my self-centered funk.

My  younger son helped me choose the colors, and I looked for different stitches to use so that the cloths would be pretty as well as useful.  It was fun, and by the time I reached my 10th washcloth, I can say that my funk was no more 🙂

With each simple washcloth, as I crocheted along, I was reminded of how something so simple could actually make a difference in someone else’s life.  With each stitch, I thought of the mission, and of the people who would be receiving them ~ it made my heart happy, and more appreciative.

I was pleased with how they turned out (and even more pleased that I was able to participate 🙂 ).  Here are a few more of the washcloths that I made and sent off to the sweet lady who agreed to pass them along for me:

             

             

 

My #CookedPerfectParty Party Kit Arrived! Planning Continues…

Disclaimer: I received the party pack, including coupons for (3) free packages of Cooked Perfect Fire Grilled Wings, and the items shown in the picture below (koozies, bottle openers, temporary tattoos…).  I received no monetary compensation, and all opinions are my own.

I was fortunate to be selected to host a #CookedPerfectParty through HouseParty and received my party package today! The package is sponsored by Cooked Perfect and features their Cooked Perfect Fire Grilled Wings.

#CookedPerfectParty pack that I received free from HouseParty & Cooked Perfect

Prior to applying for the #CookedPerfectParty, I had no idea that Cooked Perfect had chicken products ~ I’d purchased their frozen meatballs many times in the past, but the chicken offerings were new to me.

When I was notified that I was selected to host a party, I set off to Wegman’s to scope out the product beforehand ~ Wegman’s has a great selection of the wings as well as thighs and chunks.  I picked up a couple to try ~ you know, in the name of quality assurance prior to the party 😉 .

The Cooked Perfect Fire Grilled Wings are available in a nice variety of flavors, from Bourbon BBQ to Zesty Herbs and Spice. The Wildflower Honey BBQ sounds especially appealing!

If you’re interested in checking them out, swing by Wegman’s, or the Cooked Perfect website.

Be sure to check back for my updates as party day approaches ~ I’m going to be testing the wings out in the new Power Air Prfyer XL that my older son recently bought.  I’m eager to do a side by side comparison between oven baked and air fried 🙂  I’ll also be working on party favors and decorating ~ lots to do for the party!

*NEW* 1-2-3 Trade with Me ~ Pin Trading at Sesame Place

My older son has been collecting and trading collector’s pins at Walt Disney World since he was a little boy.  He’s amassed quite a nice collection, displayed in portfolios and on lanyards now as an adult.  It’s a treat when we visit Disney and see the new pins available, and we thought of it as pretty much our “Disney” thing.

That is, until now.

I’ve learned that this year, Sesame Place is introducing their own pin trading program, 123 Trade with Me.  With my 3 year old being a Sesame Place super-fan, I am excited that he will carry on the pin trading love, much closer to home 🙂  With Sesame Place being nearby, I have a feeling my younger son will be enjoying the pin trading fun a lot!

                      photo, SesamePlace.com

Pins and lanyards will be available for purchase within the park at Mr. Hooper’s Emporium ~ lanyards are priced at $9.99 each, and pins ranging in price from $8.99 to $10.99.  Currently, there are 32 unique pins to purchase/trade/collect, with more to come in the future.

As with Disney, Sesame Place appears to be releasing core pins, as well as “limited edition” and “Season Pass Member” pins.  “Special Edition” pins will be sold for a shorter period of time. [I’m eager to see which pins will fall in to this category – my thought is perhaps some relating to holidays and peak events, such as Elmo’s A Very Furry Christmas.]  Once pins have run their course, they will be “retired” and then only available through trading (or I suppose eBay 😉 ).

Of course, there are some basic rules that have been cited for pin trading.  Most importantly, make sure your pins have the Sesame Place logo and the trademark  TM/© Sesame on the back of the pin.  [There have been a fair amount of ‘fake’ Disney pins circulating on eBay and elsewhere, so I suppose there may be knock-offs of Sesame Place pins at some point – be mindful that a ‘good deal’ you encounter online may not be that terrific if you cannot trade them after all.]  Once you have your pins, find a Sesame Place Team Member who is wearing a trading pin lanyard, and ask if you may see their pins.  If there’s one you’d like, ask for a trade.  You may trade up to 3 pins per Team Member per day.

The new 123 Trade with Me pin trading program is definitely a highlight of the season this year for my family, and I look forward to both seeing the pins available and my younger son’s carrying on the pin-trading

Opening Day at Sesame Place this year is April 29th — so get ready — for the usual Sesame Place fun, plus some pin collecting and trading 🙂

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Disclaimer:  All views herein are my own. I’ve not received any compensation nor free/discounted items for presenting my viewpoints.  I was not asked to represent Sesame Place in any manner – I’ve presented the information and opinions solely out of my enthusiasm for Sesame Place and their new trading program 🙂

The Father Effect

Have you ever had an issue plague your heart and mind for a long period of time, struggling with the doubt, never being able to fully move beyond a point in healing, and feeling as this is just the way things will always be?  I’ve experienced this for nearly all of my years of life.  I reached a point where I just accepted it, and lugged it around as if it were a part of me: an unwanted part, a part that didn’t fit, didn’t belong – much like a third arm that served no purpose, wasn’t useful in any manner, and just hanging there, a lifeless impediment.

I thought this was just the norm ~ and then, in an instant that all changed with a simple stumbling across a television program (of all things).

A mindless moment quickly turned in to a deep and revolutionary experience.  It sounds so dramatic; I suppose because it truly was.  I sat hinged on each scene, relating to so much of it. The Father Effect movie addressed so many of the emotions that I had deeply felt for decades.

photo credit: pexels.com

It did much more than that though.  It presented the “other side.”  I had always seen the situation through my eyes, from my perspective.  This movie presented the larger scope, and I sat genuinely in awe of the reality that there was far more to the issue than I had previously understood.

By the end of the movie, I can honestly say my perspective had changed.  It had morphed from one of resentment, loss, and mourning to one of forgiveness, acceptance, and healing.

I’d heard people mention in the past about how one day an issue melted away, freeing one after years of being weighed down by it.  I never understood (or quite honestly even truly believed) the testimonies.  That afternoon though, I did understand, and genuinely believed.  That weight, that extra lifeless impediment that was always present, was no longer there.

My feelings of utter worthlessness and not belonging anywhere were put in to perspective.  Their source wasn’t grounded in truth about my worth or ability to be loved. Rather, the source was grounded in someone else’s pain.  My father’s tossing me aside, his most recent wife’s not even giving me the courtesy of knowing he had passed away (I learned about that through Google), and the hurtful words uttered by others were not reflections of me. Rather, they were reflections of pained individuals seeking to assuage their own feelings with little to no regard for how it was impacting anyone else, including me.

The truths shared in this movie, and the way in which they were presented, are so very powerful, and healing.  I am thankful for the men and women who participated in the movie, and for the gentleman who created the project.  They, in their sharing, have aided in my healing and growth ~ for that I am sincerely grateful.

It’s with this renewed sense of self, and fresh understanding, that I can say without hesitation or lack of honesty, that regardless of what happened in the past, I love my father ~ and I choose to believe that in his own way, he loved me too.

photo credit: pexels.com

 

   May your memory be a blessing, (A)(B). 

 

Fluffy Slime & Fluffy Slime with Glitter ~Super Easy DIY

 

       

 

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been seeing a lot online about fluffy slime and fluffy slime with glitter, and wanted to learn more about it.  My three year old son is mesmerized by those ‘surprise egg’ and ‘mashems’ reveals on YouTube, and many have been incorporating slime in to the videos as well, so I knew this would be something he’d be interested in too.

I set out to compare recipes (both with and without borax*) and techniques, and all seemed to be pretty much the same basic recipe with other ‘add-ins’ to set theirs apart from the rest.  I am a basic kind of gal, so I opted to keep it simple, and chose to stick with the basic elements while omitting the ones I felt were not essential.

(* just a quick note on the borax: Many of the recipes I saw touted headlines of ‘borax-free’ and subbing in liquid starch or contact lens solution in place of borax.  I’m not certain as to their concerns over the use of borax, but I found it to be readily available, inexpensive (under $4 for a decent sized box at Wal-Mart) and after reading up on it, I deemed it safe for my family’s use.  If you’re not comfortable with using borax for any reason, you may want to try one of the substitutions).

The items and ingredients that you will need are quite basic and inexpensive.  They are:

* 4 ounces of white school glue (ie: one standard size bottle of Elmer’s or Rose Art)
* a teaspoon of water
* 1 cup of shaving cream (not gel)
* lotion (scented lotion will lend a pleasant fragrance to your slime)
* food coloring, if desired, to add pizazz to your slime
* glitter, if you want to add a little sparkle and crunch
* 1/4 cup of very warm water
* 1/4 teaspoon of borax

The process is equally simple:

* First, in a small cup or bowl, combine 1/4 teaspoon of borax and 1/4 cup of very warm water, mixing until the borax is fully dissolved. Set aside.

* Next, in a medium bowl, add 4 ounces (one standard size bottle) of white school glue. I add a teaspoon of water directly to the bottle and swish it around to release any stubborn glue not wanting to participate without an extra nudge 😉 and add it to the bowl as well. Mix.

* If you’re adding food coloring, I prefer to add it in now (I found it easier to incorporate before the shaving cream is added). Be sure to add a bit more than you think you need, as the color will be less concentrated when you add in the shaving cream. Mixa-mixa.

* Now, add the one cup of shaving cream. Mix.

* Add a few pumps of lotion, and mix.

* Take your borax and water solution, and add a teaspoon at a time, mixing well after each addition, until it comes together in a clump. Don’t be heavy handed with the borax solution, or you will ruin your slime. Just add enough until it comes together in to a clumpy ball-ish form. Remove from bowl, and knead it on the counter or table until it reaches the consistency you like. The slime will become less tacky the more you knead it. If it doesn’t, then you can dip your fingers in the borax as you knead, being careful to not add too much.

It does look like a sticky mess when it’s out of the bowl, and there’s the temptation to dribble on a lot more borax, but try to refrain from doing that — I learned that if you do, you will cause the slime to become too thick and ‘hard’ to where it’s more like silly putty than slime. If you do end up adding to much borax solution, you can *try* to remedy this and not waste your ingredients (and time), by adding more lotion — I needed to do this when I made my first couple of batches. Simply add a few pumps of lotion to the slime, and knead away, adding more as you deem necessary until you reach the desired consistency. If you didn’t add a crazy amount of borax, you should be able to salvage your slime if you add enough lotion, as I did.

In my first attempt, I added way too much of the borax solution, resulting in a slime that snapped rather than stretched.
After kneading about 20 pumps of lotion in to the snapped slime, I achieved a better, though not perfect, texture.

* If you’re adding glitter, now is the time to do it. Pat out your slime, and add as much or as little glitter as you’d like. Fold the slime on to itself, enclosing the glitter within slime, and knead until it’s incorporated. If you determine it’s just not enough, repeat the process until you reach the desired amount of sparkle and crunch.

Pat out your slime, add desired amount of glitter in to the center of the slime. The slime can hold a lot of glitter, so you can add a little, or a lot depending on how sparkly and crunchy you’d like the final product to be.
Fold the edges of the slime over the glitter and knead, knead, knead. If you determine you’d like more sparkle and crunch, repeat the process until you reach the effect you’re looking to create.
Ready to play!

Voila! Your diy fluffy slime or fluffy slime with glitter is ready to use.

Store in an air tight container for future play.

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It was fun and inexpensive to make. Each batch of fluffy slime without glitter cost me under 50 cents, and about 75 cents with glitter.

My son has been having a lot of fun playing with the slime, and it holds up pretty well. I did notice that it loses some of its ‘oomph’ and volume over the course of a few days and a lot of play, but it’s still much more voluminous than basic slime.

Have you tried making fluffy slime?  How did it turn out?  Did you use borax or opt for a substitution?