Tag Archive | learning

Moving Forward



For far too long, I’ve been in the “selling” mentality.  I’ve had an Etsy shop for over 5 years with my paper roses and when I think of the amount of time, energy plus the supplies I have amassed over the years…it is daunting.  I’ve had over 200 orders over the years…bridal bouquets, toss bouquets , and boutonnieres(especially the comic book ones).

It all started when my daughter was in college and wanted something special for her favorite English Literature professor.  I had just started playing around in making the paper roses(watching the various instructional videos and perfecting it along the way0.  I made a bouquet of Pride and Prejudice book paper, wrapped the stems in ivory lace and ribbons.  It was primitive in regards to what I do now but it was lovely anyway and both my daughter and her professor were pleased.

My second project was making the rehearsal bouquets for the wedding my daughter was in that summer…for the bride and all the bridesmaids.  Since then I’ve made the rehearsal bouquets for all of the weddings of her friends along the way..

Working with brides(and grooms) holds a special spot in my heart since I worked in the Juliette Bridals in Pottsville years ago as a bridal consultant.  You are working with a dream and although there have been “bridezillas” along the way, the vast majority of them were a pleasure to work with.  Like everything else, the time I spent on the roses has not been wasted…the pleasure I’ve had developing the technique is never lost and the many brides and grooms who wrote back to tell me(and show me with photos) of how special the flowers made their day.

My roses have gone to many places over the years…US, Canada, Australia, England and Europe.  Some hairy incidents with the postal service…such as the time the box had been held in the clearinghouse because of flooding and made it to the bride on the day…she had gotten a back up…just in case.  The bride who needed it in time before she left for her destination wedding.  Comic book boutonnieres for the groom/groomsmen who refused to wear flowers.  The  bouquet that we finally got figured out…over 50 emails!  The entire bridal party’s bouquets, wands and boutonnieres that went to the Netherlands…5 boxes worth…and the bride sending me gorgeous pictures of the whole affair.  The brides needing something within the month.  The bride who told me I charged too much…I very nicely told her that there were plenty of Youtube videos showing the process and that she could get her bridesmaids together and do it as a group project.  She thanked me.  Two weeks later, I received an email telling me she had done that, they all each made one miserable rose and her bridesmaids told her, “order the flowers cause we aren’t doing this!”  All a learning experience.

I’ve decided December 31 to close my Etsy shop…the realization came that for far too long, I’ve focused on items to sell and make.  For far too long I’ve left my love of mixed media art, art quilts and upcycling clothing behind…I’d think about doing it and then thinking…oh no,  you need to concentrate on making more bouquets to put on the shop… This is the year for  me to focus on what I used to love to do and leave the selling mentality behind. Who knows, I might even get back to my doll making/repairs again.

A new year is coming up…time to spend a little time thinking about what is and what is not working in your life…I’m not talking about resolutions or goals or anything like that…I’m just saying that maybe it’s time to spend a little time and see if you are focusing on things that really don’t give you the joy anymore…just a thought…

til next time…Eva


Language Perils

My husband has an interest in maps and languages.  One of his absolute favorite things to do is sit with an atlas…doesn’t matter from where…and study it.  He will buy a map from a city and that will entertain him for hours.  Another love of his is learning a new language.  He will start his new language just before winter starts and all winter long, every night, he will spend hours on the computer learning his new language.

It begins with watching the free You-Tube videos.  Then he starts purchasing the CDs for the language.  Then a dictionary.  Then starts making flash cards.  Then childrens’ books in that language.  So on, so on and so on.

He’s a pianist and when he concentrates on a particular composer, he plays all of the music from that composer.  If they speak/spoke a different language, then he feels the need to read their words in the native language.  Admirable.  As  long as you don’t have to live with the said person learning language!

He started off with Dutch years ago when we were first married.  Every time he didn’t know what to do with himself, he’d get the Dutch information out.  This went on for years.  I was kind of relieved when he did the same with Spanish…thinking…good, this is useful, they are always saying how good it is to know Spanish.  That didn’t last long.

Last winter it was French.  I have tried French several times and never succeeded.  He was quite pleased with himself in accomplishing something I could not.  He was making flash cards of various words and placing them on our appliances and furniture.  Ok, I could deal with that.

Forward to this past winter.  Out of the blue, he decided that Norwegian would be a good language to learn.  He started off with You-Tube free videos.  The woman he was learning from wasn’t even Norwegian…so it was Norwegian with a NY accent.  I dealt with his proud pronunciations for a month.  Fast forward to last night…he has now been learning Norwegian since October.  9 months.

Every night after dinner, my husband gets my computer for a few hours before he goes to bed(he’s an early one…in bed by 9).  It had been a tough week workwise for me and I had made myself a cup of coffee and settled in my chair.  Kitty was on my lap and Zowie in her cage nearby.  We all were dozing a bit(pets and I).  All of the sudden, I hear a mumbling coming from my husband’s part of the living room.  He is wearing earphones and mumbling quite loudly in Norwegian.

Kitty started shifting around on my lap.  Zowie started getting agitated.  First she flapped her wings. Her next show of displeasure was rattling her string of bells.  And lastly, when nothing stopped the mumbling, she climbed down to her bottom perch where she could reach her door and started lifting that and slamming it…over and over again.  Between that and the mumbling, the minor headache I have basically had all week blew into a major one.

I had to calm Zowie down so I went over to her cage and petted her while soothingly talking to her.  Thankfully it was soon 9 and hubby stopped being on the computer.  “You were kind of vocal tonight…”  “Oh, was I?  I was listening to a Norwegian song and reading the lyrics…”

He went to bed.  Peace reigned once again.  You know, I always wanted to get back to Norway again…I had been there with my parents once and it was breathtakingly beautiful.  But between Disney’s Frozen cruises and my husband learning Norwegian, I think I am foregoing it for a while…

til next time…Eva