My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond #556: Crunch Time (?)

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Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 12-18-2011 02:16 PM 1448 reads 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 555: Thank You to Ellen35! Part 556 of My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond series Part 557: Making Progress »

Well folks, it seems we are getting down to the wire. Everyone I talk to seems like they are kicking it up to high gear to get everything done in time for Christmas. Why then, do I feel so lazy?

I have noticed this trend in myself the past week. Instead of being more keyed up and moving faster, it seems that I have adopted this ‘what will be, will be’ attitude and have slowed down. It isn’t really like me and it feels rather strange. Especially a week before Christmas.

Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that I got all of my stuff to be mailed out the door. For me, that is a large portion of what I worry about this time of the year. With most of my family and friends not being here with me, I think that was a large concern.

The things that I have to do for people here are mostly done too, with just a few projects left in the works. There doesn’t seem to be any urgency, as I know I will have time to complete everything. I even may make all the kitties some catnip stuffed mice if I have a chance. I have my three cats, and Lee next door has five and Keith’s parents have a lovely calico named “Lacie”. I made Lacie a stuffed mouse last year and she literally played with it until it fell apart. She could use a new toy for her little stocking.

I am caught up with the magazine stuff too (for now) and even though I realize that stuff will be due in January for the next issue, there is weeks between then and now and I just don’t feel like pushing myself in that direction just yet. The same with the wholesalers, as catalog submissions are not due until the end of the month either. Besides, I am thinking all the time of new things and have several ideas in my head that only need to be made. So it isn’t like the well has run dry or anything.

I am working on the pieces for Ellen’s fence and I hope that in the next couple of days I will have all four of them done. For those of you who didn’t read the day I talked about it, Ellen has a picket fence section that they put in their yard. On top of the pickets, they place four characters to celebrate the particular season it happens to be. Somehow they lost their Christmas characters and they asked me if I would paint some new ones for them. It is hard to say ‘no’ to them (Cozmo, you reading?) and I took on the job. I finished the most complex one first – the Santa head – and I think it came out nice. Here is a picture:

The candy canes should be done today, too. They are in progress with the most tedious parts done. I just need to finish up on some greenery on them and then I hope to do the poinsettia today also. I think I am going to have a ‘jammy day’ and just spend the day painting. After that, there will be only one more piece to do and I think I will make that a bell. Since Bernie and Ellen’s last name is “Bell” they really like bell things around the house.

I must be honest in saying that my heart really isn’t into doing these. Perhaps that is why it is taking so long and I feel kind of poopie about it. I think that knowing that they are going to be stuck out in the snow kind of takes the wind out of my sails. I plan to use outdoor varnish, but they are painted on pine (wood which Bernie gave me) and I don’t have my hopes too high that they will last more than a couple of seasons.

I have had others tell me to ‘paint it simpler’ but anyone who knows me know how impossible it is for me to do that. I really wouldn’t know how to do a job like this any other way than trying to do my best. That is just me. As I was picking on Santa’s highlights, I finally said that enough was enough and he is done. I suppose I could have picked for several more days to give him more depth and dimension. But then I pictured him posted on that fence in the Nova Scotia winter and I thought to myself “Why?” So he is what he is.

I sure do pick a weird time to slow down, don’t I? Inside me though I feel that if I don’t take a little time to be lazy and poke around, I will kind of burn out. I can’t keep going in high gear all the time and in reality, this may be a very good time to take a step back and regain my energy.

A friend of mind posted a recipe for mushroom perogies last week on her blog. She loves to cook and try new things. Coming from a family with European roots (both my grandparents were from Czechoslovakia) I had grown up with some wonderful ethnic cooking. It has been a long time since I have made perogies and today it sounds like a plan. There is a light dusting of snow on the ground, and it just seems like a good day to stay in and cook and paint. Sundays are good for that – especially in the winter.

I hope you all remember to take some time to enjoy the day too. Everything will get done. And if it doesn’t, there is always tomorrow.

Have a great Sunday

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

5 comments so far

View Leldon's profile


67 posts in 2900 days

#1 posted 12-18-2011 06:02 PM

Sheila, as soon as I got all my orders done I took a break. I didn’t need too, but I did! I guess I’m still on it seeing how I haven’t got anything made yet! Oh well! If it is late it is late. Your Santa looks amazing! Your painting always makes me want to learn how to paint, even though I know I couldn’t be as good as you!

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9231 posts in 2947 days

#2 posted 12-18-2011 06:28 PM

Well, my dear friend, I am certainly glad you did. You work all the time too and you also need take time for yourself. What good is it if you can’t enjoy your life? Thanks for the nice thoughts on the painting. I can one day deliver the stuff to you and you can finish them up for me. You would do that, wouldn’t you?? ;)


-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View BigTiny's profile


1676 posts in 2916 days

#3 posted 12-19-2011 12:17 AM

Hi Sheila.

So you like to cook do you? Okay, here’s an original of mine that was published. I came up with it for Mrs Tiny to celebrate her return from her favorite niece’s wedding. I figured something wedding related was in order, so here is my

Pork in Confetti

Cut a pork tenderloin into bite size slices
In a wok or frying pan, heat a bit of cooking oil with a bit of garlic and/or ginger to taste and fry the pork slices until just done.
Cut up some small bell peppers of various colors (you can find purple, yellow and orange as well as the usual red and green) into bite size pieces.
Open a can of pineapple chunks and pour the juice into a saucepan. Bring just to the boil, then thicken with a slurry of a teaspoon of corn starch in an ounce of cold water. Boil gently for a few minutes until thickened and then reduce heat to a simmer.
Add pork plus enough of the pineapple and pepper pieces to round out the dish, reserving the rest for another recipe. Simmer until everything is heated through but the peppers are still crunchy.

Serve hot over rice.

Egg rolls as an appetizer and fortune cookies as desert with hot Chinese tea rounds out the meal.

Hope you try this some time. It’s one of Mrs Tiny’s favorites.


-- The nicer the nice, the higher the price!

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9231 posts in 2947 days

#4 posted 12-19-2011 01:30 PM

Hi, Paul:
I so love to cook, although I don’t do as much of it now as you can imagine. I make just about anything from scratch and don’t get a lot of packaged foods. With growing up in the Chicago area, I was fortunate to be exposed to many different ethnic foods and I have learned to make most of my favorites. I love cooking different foods and when I used to go to painting with the girls I would bring them samples of foods from all over the world. My favorites were Greek, Mexican, Italian and of course those from my Bohemian heritage., as well as Asian dishes. They liked some but others were a bit too ‘exotic’ for them, they said.

Your recipe looks great and I will definitely give it a go. I love pork tenderloin and it is one of the meats we have here that are fairly reasonable in price too. It looks like something that I can make fairly quickly, which is what my goals usually are these days. Thanks so much for sharing. (I hope Mrs. Tiny is feeling better too!)

Take care, Sheila

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

10123 posts in 4080 days

#5 posted 12-20-2011 04:24 AM


That looks yummy!

I grabbed it & printed it out… Will give it to Head cook…

Hope she cooks it soon…

Thank you.

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:"

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