Thursday, December 13, 2012

orchestrating moments of bliss

Bliss is a beautiful word defined as "complete happiness" and so I tread lightly when using it because I don't want to diminish its power the way I do when casually dropping similarly strong terms like "awesome" or even "love" -- as in "I love that awesome dress!" I believe that bliss is fleeting, it's momentary -- but it can be created and experienced and that it's important to orchestrate moments of bliss when you can.

This post was meant to be about muffins. How on days set aside to write or create I will often bake muffins or scramble eggs to have with hot coffee served in my favorite mug, all to set the stage for moments of complete happiness.

Today I have the morning and early afternoon reserved for writing a magazine tutorial. Having my work published is something that still dazzles me like a waking dream and I want to revel in even the smallest moments of the process. Muffin, coffee, writing, quiet. Sigh.

When I am working on new projects, coffee is switched out for flavored seltzer: fresh, lightly flavored and effervescent or "crispy" as I like to call it, and quiet is replaced with favorite music on repeat (my crafting go-to is the band Luna which is familiar-to-me, energizing but not at all distracting) as tidy rooms become gloriously disheveled messes and I dart from idea to idea. {Cleaning up afterwards is the "crash" -- what goes up, must come down!}

Short blissful experiences can happen in many ways. Sometimes for me it can be driving in the car on the way home from an errand after-dark while listening to more favorite music (The Lemonheads or The Strokes) with the windows down (this can be done in cold weather, too -- just crank up the heat), sharing a great big laugh with family and friends, being outdoors in the fall with the fire pit going, seeing a city lit-up at night, being near the ocean, smelling a nectarine, dancing, being silly with my boys, night-blogging with a glass of wine, and much more. Not so complicated or time-consuming but still wonderful. I will often pause to realize the moment and close my eyes, even for a second or two ... to be. in. it.

Okay, well the seltzer is poured so I'd better get working on my tutorial. Do you set-the stage to make activities enjoyable? Maybe you'll orchestrate some bliss for yourself today. {Hope so!}


Thursday, December 6, 2012

tinkered snow globe

Ever notice how the shiny over-sized twist-ties on heads of lettuce are the perfect shade of red? Perfect for wrapping around the lid of say, a canning jar that happens to have a small tree glued to its inside-center.

Which I then filled with salt, layered with sprinkles of glitter and added a few pearly beads to ...

to create a tinkered version of a mason jar snow globe.

But wait! First I needed to try out a new trick I'd read about: mixing epsom salt with white wine until a mush is formed

which is then spread and patted-down on surfaces and allowed to dry to create a frosty effect

{which I am guessing is how this delightfully crusty vignette seen at Anthropologie came to be}.

Once "frost" has hardened, shake off any excess crystalized salt and display as desired.

Serving suggestions: Perhaps display on a cake pedestal alongside other salty-sweet projects like this one

and relax & enjoy!


{Please note that these projects should not be eaten}