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41  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: June 2009 Birthday Swap Gallery (& chat) on: July 02, 2009 05:49:02 PM
Oh, good, I'm so glad you like it Smiley  I sewed the entire thing by hand, something I've never really done before Smiley
42  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: June 2009 Birthday Swap Gallery (& chat) on: June 30, 2009 09:06:08 PM
I realized today that I have a bunch of swap photos to post, so here's the wonderful steampunk jewelry that Atsuko made for me Cheesy









The bee came on a chain, but as you can see, it also has a pin back, and I've been wearing it as a brooch with my favorite little black dress Cheesy

Thank you so much, Atsuko, I love them!
43  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: Witch/Wicca/Pagan Swap Round 12 Gallery of Fun Summer Days AND Nights! on: June 30, 2009 08:46:44 PM
So, when I was 18, I worked for a single summer as a junior counselor at Camp Arrowhead in Lewes, Delaware.  I'm writing this post because the alumni association for the camp has been asking for volunteers to visit area churches and talk about the camp.  Well, it's not really local for me, so I can't do that, but I thought it would be worthwhile to share my thoughts about it with you lovely people. 

I'll start off by saying that I would completely encourage anyone who lives close enough to send their children here, no matter what form of religion or spirituality you do or do not believe in.  Technically, the camp is episcopalian and they do have a chapel and a "Christian Education" block during the camp activities.  However, the Christianity you'll find here is unlike anything I've seen in any church that I've ever encountered.  The teachings and activities are heavily influence by American Indian spiritual beliefs and practices.  The summer that I was there, the sermons were about living harmoniously with nature, the music was about taking joy in life, and in Christian Education we made sand mandalas and medicine bags.  I can't find my mandalas anymore (we glued them down so the kids could take them home)  but I do still have my medicine bag hanging on the wall next to my bed. 

Making the bags was a lot of fun - During five day sessions, the first day, we made the bags, then each day after that, our CE focused on one of the four elements and everyone got a token to represent the element of the day for their medicine bags; a shell for water, rock for earth, feather for air, and a mirror to represent fire. Ironically, I think this camp may be what really ruined me as a Christian.  The sheer wonderfulness of the people and experience there made the attitudes of "real life" Christianity seem that much worse!

This was the start of me realizing that there were valid non-christian ways of explaining the world and even though I was only there for one short summer, so much of what makes me who I am came from there. I will gladly be sending my daughter there next summer (first year she's old enough) and every year after that she wants to go.  If she has half as good an experience as I did, I expect it to be every year until she's working as a counselor there. 

So, thanks for reading past "christian summer camp"  and if anyone is inclined to send their 7-year-old daughter there next summer, let me know and maybe we'll run into each other during drop-off Cheesy
44  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Re: love note! on: June 30, 2009 02:10:45 PM
That's so sweet Smiley  You should use red to cross out the word, then write fiance in black again, then after the wedding, cross out fiance, and write husband underneath that Cheesy
45  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: Bead Soup Swap Gallery on: June 30, 2009 09:18:30 AM
Oh My Goodness. I received my box from Chibi Neko.  WOW! Shocked Shocked Shocked I'm going to be taking pictures for a long time, but I'll get them posted ASAP.  Let me just tell you, Chibi filled a large flat rate box with beads.

Shocked Shocked Shocked
I'm off now to unpack it all, play with it, roll around in it, dive into it like Scrooge McDuck in a pile of money, and take some pictures  Grin
46  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: June 2009 Birthday Swap Gallery (& chat) on: June 30, 2009 04:34:03 AM
That's so cute Cheesy

I got my flat iron cozy out to Sparky17 yesterday... Hope you like it Smiley
47  Craft Swaps / ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED / Re: WWP Rd 13, Chunky Pages! closed, send July 25! on: June 30, 2009 04:08:22 AM
Edel, I'll trade you sharpies for chocolate Cheesy
48  Craft Swaps / ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED / Re: WWP Rd 13, Chunky Pages! closed, send July 25! on: June 28, 2009 07:23:10 PM
Yay, I love my group Cheesy  I can't wait to get started; I have so many ideas, I might have to make a list! For you gals who do this alot, do you have any suggestions for good places on the internet to browse for copyright-free images?
49  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Beads: Completed Projects / Re: First try at a chandelier earring... on: June 28, 2009 03:21:19 PM
That's lovely, especially for a first try.  It's generally a good idea to use the cheap stuff while you're working out your method, and switch to the better stuff once you have it down.  You might want to try using pliers to grip the wire if your nails are getting in the way. 

I made the jewelry for my wedding, so I know what you're going through.  I was finishing the last necklace while getting my hair done the day of the wedding!  Good luck with them and make sure you show us the final product Cheesy
50  Craft Swaps / ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED / Re: WWP Rd 13, Chunky Pages! all chunky page lovers welcome! sign up closed, send July 25! on: June 27, 2009 05:45:27 PM
I've found hot glue to be marvelous for holding things in place.  My daughter had a project for her 100 Days of School celebration where she had to glue 100 of something to a poster and bring it to school for their display.  So she wanted these flat-backed plastic craft "jewels" and she made a wonderful arranged of a tree with a nest full of birds and glued them all down by herself with tacky glue.  Unfortunately, we picked it up the next morning and about half the jewels came unstuck and fell all over the floor.  So she repositioned them and I went through with the hot glue gun and re-glued them all, prying up the ones that hadn't fallen to use the hot glue and now I couldn't get them off if I wanted to.

Of course, I needed my glue gun the other day and couldn't find it, which could be a problem  Roll Eyes
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