Thursday, January 26, 2012


I've always wanted to be artistic.  I know it runs in my family because I have siblings that are really artistic.  My brother Eric is really good at drawing as is my sister Deanne.  One day I asked Deanne, "How do you know how to draw things so they look like the thing you are trying to draw?"  She replied, "Oh, I just think about it in my mind and then I draw it."  Okay, I do that too, but something happens from my brain to my hand and it doesn't look like the thing I'm trying to draw."  I mean, I know exactly what a dog looks like but I think my brain doesn't add enough details like proportion.  I'm not sure what the problem is but I cannot draw just from my mind.  If I have a simple picture to copy I can usually get it to look somewhat similar to the original, but most people would not want my copy. Sadly I did not get that artistic gene that runs in my family-and it's something I've always wanted.  Giuliana got a gift in the mail from a friend of hers who is a wonderful artist.  He is Giuliana's age and when someone has a birthday or something to celebrate he often draws something for them and gives it to them as a gift.  Giuliana has collected some little drawings from this young man and has them hanging all over her room.  The above picture Giuliana received int he mail yesterday as a Christmas gift.  I was stunned, as was Giuliana.  She loved, loved, loved it!  I started thinking of all the talented people around me  and the things they have created and given to me or let me use for the time being.  As I walked from room to room yesterday I saw my house was filled with wonderful items created by others.  I will share some of them.
Christina, my cute little niece sent me these for Christmas.  She used her artistic skills to make me the cute necklace on the right and then covered a notebook with fun paper for me to use.  I love them both and I will use both the notebook and wear the necklace.  It was a fun surprise to get that.
This is a picture my friend AJ Fowler painted for me when I lived in Italy.  I was her visiting teacher and one day I noticed a beautiful painting of some Texas Bluebonnets in her livingroom.  I told her how much I admired the picture and she commented that she didn't think she did a very good job on it as she is just learning to paint.  It was then I realized that she had painted the picture that I thought was so lovely.  I asked if she would be willing to try painting a picture for me of the Bay of Naples.  She was reluctant but finally agreed-I even told her I would pay her-but she didn't want to be paid.  In the end this is the picture I received.  I love it for 2 reasons, because I loved the way it looked and because AJ painted for me.  I did end up giving her some money for it just because I knew she put a lot of work into it.
My sister Laura made me this cute plate.  It's perfect and I put it out every year at Thanksgiving time.  Laura is really good at sewing and making these kind of craft things and it's always exciting to get something from her.
My sister-in-law Stacey is another artistic person.  I received this picture for Christmas this year and it has been hanging in my house ever since.
 I wish I could keep this but alas, Spencer made this in his wood shop class, so it's really his.  I will just borrow it until he has a place of his own.  Clint made a beautiful chest like this also but he kept his in Utah.  Oh the talent that runs in our family!

Here is a sampler my mom made and turned it into a little quilt.  I love samplers and have spent a lot of time doing X-stich samplers, but this is one of my favorites.
A cute ceramic pot Giuliana created.  You would think this pot was for me since there is a "Y" on it but I'm pretty sure Giuliana will take it to BYU with her when she goes to college!  But at least I get to enjoy it in the house as long as Giuliana lives here.
Okay, this looks a bit cluttery but this is a cute utility box Bryan made for me one year.  It sits atop a desk in Spencer's old room and it was filled with office supplies but it looks like I need to clean it out.  Again, I think someday Bryan will want it back but I'll use it for now.
I have several things Deanne has made me but I'm always in awe of her drawing talent.  Here is a T-shirt she designed for my Mom and Dad's 50th wedding anniversary.  I thought was so cute, although it's a little hard to see from this picture.  Believe me it's adorable.
Maybe there is a wood working gene that runs in our family.  Here is a frame my brother Doug designed and gave to me.  It hold these small church posters that we love.  Giuliana has hijacked the frame and put it in her room, but luckily for me, when she leaves for college, the frame stays!

Here is a metal toolbox of sorts that Clint made in his metal shop.  It turned out beautifully and looks better than the things I find in the store.
So as you can see I am surrounded by incredibly gifted people who share their gifts and talents with me.  Now I'm not trying to say I don't have any talents because I think I do, they are just not those visible artistic talents that I've always longed for.  The past 10 years or so I have tried my hand at crocheting.  I have spent hours trying to decipher directions and practicing stitches.  I am not like my grandmother who can whip out a full size blanket in a weeks time.  My blankets often take 2-3 years to complete and I'm always amazed that I was able to do it.  They are not the best looking blankets in the world but I work at it-what I'm saying is, it doesn't come naturally.  The more I do the more confidence I have gained.  I mostly have made these blankets for my children, but every once in a while I'm brave enough to make one for someone else besides my children.  Here are a few blankets I have made that past couple of years. 
A blanket I made for Giuliana.  It is folded in half in this picture but it was pretty fun to make.
A blanket I made for Bryan for college.  After I was done, I couldn't believe I actually made it.
My most recent completed project.  This is a blanket I made for Spencer for college.  It turned out quite nice.  Even though I need a pattern for every project I do, and even though I can't think of how to do things without directions,and even though I don't know how to put colors and patterns together, I am thankful for the people who do know how to do this and share it with me as it brings me a lot of joy.  Yay for talents!

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