Wisdom Doesn’t Come Cheap

Do you ever think of yourself as wise?

When I think back to my younger days, I remember:

I thought I knew it all…

No one could tell me anything new…

Nor could anyone tell me I was wrong…least of all, my spouse!

Yes, young and stupid.  Do you see yourself that way as you look back in time?  I definitely do, and I think it’s accurate.

Wisdom is acquired over time, and some of us have a very slow learning curve (me!).  We’re never quite “there”, either.

Wisdom Doesn't Come Cheap

Our loudness, confidence, and outright arrogance of youth, in time, are tempered with real life experiences that humble us.  A good humbling can really shut me up!  Does it have a quieting effect on you?  It does for me, that is for sure.

This verse comes to mind almost daily.  It helps me see things more clearly.

Proverbs 14:1

Here are a few ways I’ve torn down my house in the past:

Disrespect shown to my husband…

A negative attitude toward my husband and/or kids.

Anger displayed to my kids.  Ahem…usually not with my grocery store voice, either.

Need I go on?

You get the point, right?  Because I could go on…line after line of admissions.  Couldn’t you?  Couldn’t we all?

Our hands aren’t the only things that tear down our homes – it’s our mouths!  Poorly chosen words can tear down our house – and it’s costly.

On the positive side, I have the opportunity to re-build my house (simply place hands over mouth).  And so do you.  Starting today.

Support my husband through word and deed.

Encourage him in his work – at the office and at home.

Encourage my kids, discipline with love and kindness.

You get the picture, right?

I hope so.  I don’t want to have to air any more dirty laundry to make my point.  Remembering my days of less wisdom (and outright stupidity) is painful!

Now that we’ve got that straightened out, let’s go to church!  It’s a spectacular Sunday!  🙂

Blessings,

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Have Thine Own Way, Lord

It’s surprising to me sometimes how favorite old hymns originated – and the lives of those who wrote them.

Adelaide Pollard was born during the Civil War in Iowa.  Her given name by her parents was Sarah, but she liked the name Adelaide  better.  So, when she became old enough, she changed her name to Adelaide.

Adelaide went to Chicago to teach in a girls’ school after attending Boston School of Oratory (Emerson College).

While she struggled with frailty, health-wise, she met John Alexander Dowie, a Scottish-born faith healer who had a rather strange ministry.  Dowie claimed to be Elijah who would precede the Coming of Christ.

Uhh…didn’t John the Baptist already do that?  Didn’t Jesus say he was Elijah returned?  Yes…

And if you are willing to acept what I say, he is Elijah,
the one the prophets said would come. 
(Matthew 11:14)

Dowie bought 6,800 acres near Chicago and started building “Zion City”, which ended in failure.  Adelaide supposedly was healed of diabetes through Dowie’s ministry, failure or not.

Adelaide later joined in the ministry of Sanford, an evangelist who predicted the imminent return of Christ.   She moved to New England to assist Sanford, and it was there (in her 40’s) that she felt God calling her to minister in Africa.  But, she was unable to raise the financial support and became heartsick with disappointment.  Adelaide attended a prayer meeting where she met an elderly woman who prayed for her.

It doesn’t matter what you bring into our lives, Lord.  Just have your own way with us.

The prayer’s closing phrase pierced Adelaide’s heart so much that she started formulating “Have Thine Own Way, Lord” in her head.  She went home that evening and studied Jeremiah’s story of the potter and the clay in chapter 18.

Before bed that night, she wrote out a prayer that later became the hymn.

Did Adelaide ever make it to Africa?  Yes, she did…eventually.  As best, it was God’s  timing.

But she didn’t stay.  World War I broke out, sending her to Scotland and then back to America later.  She wrote poems there, spoke to groups, and ministered freely.

At 72, Adelaide purchased a train ticket at New York’s Penn Station for a speaking engagement in Pennsylvania.  While awaiting her boarding at the station, Adelaide had a seizure and died shortly thereafter.  The Lord had His way.  She’d lived a long, fulfilling life.

Isn’t that a neat story?  I love learning about people’s lives, don’t you?  Truth is often much more interesting than fiction!

Have a spectacular Sunday, y’all!

Blessings~

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How to Choose a Machine for Home Decor Sewing

HOW DO YOU CHOOSE A MACHINE WISELY?

That has been a popular question this week.  I’ve been planning to make a video on exactly what you need for sewing home decor.  Later.

Readers are asking questions about sewing machines regarding my  3-Step DIY on Covering Outdoor Cushions post.  Personal emails come from access to my contact page.  The questions keep coming up NOW.  So, I decided to help you navigate this as far as my knowledge on the subject and the level of research I’ve personally done.

There is a difference.  I know this because I started out my sewing apprenticeship (ha!) in clothing.  And, the machine needs are different.

Can I just be real  about this topic – the topic of making clothing – again?  No offense to ANYONE who is proficient at sewing clothing.  I promise.  I envy your clothing queendom.  But, then again, I don’t. (Hey…I promised real.)

Sewing clothing, for me, is tedious – and a huge use of my time.  When I could go to a store and buy something I like (even better!) and pay just as much as I spent on fabric for the item that takes me days  to make, what’s the point?

There’s no wisdom in that (for me).

Choose Your Sewing Machine Wisely

Sewing home decor is a different story.  There is a huge difference between the look of a room (and the cost of it, too) that is made with window dressings and textile accessories that have custom fabrics and fine finishing.

Hand-sewn hems – deep hems – for the lush-ness of custom,

Linings added for strength, flow, durability, and longevity…,

Companion fabric accents and trimmings for added details and decorative punch,

Colors perfectly blended for the feel you desire your room to exude.

Yes, you get all of that!  Oh, and that is why you need a certain type of sewing machine – unless you have an unlimited supply of green to pay someone else for the look of custom.

But why do that when you can do it yourself and save thousands?  And that’s the major difference between making clothing and home decor.  With window treatments alone, you save thousands over a lifetime of making your own.  I never saved a penny with making my own clothing.

Now that I’m finished with my rant, here’s the nitty-gritty  on sewing machine selection – if you’re in the market for a machine to sew home decor.

This machine at first glance appears to be awesome.  Even the reviews are very high at 4.5 stars.

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SINGER 7258 Stylist Award-Winning 100-Stitch Computerized Sewing Machine with DVD, 10 Presser Feet, Metal Frame, and More

Wow!  Look at all those stitches it will make.  Impressive, huh?  You bet.  But…that means more can go wrong with this machine.  Anything electronic that we can’t repair ourselves must be taken to an expert to get it up and going again.

Can I also tell you that for sewing home decor, you’ll never need more than these stitch settings?

The straight stitch,

the zig-zag stitch,

a hem stitch for quick hems (not necessary, but nice to have),

and a button-hole stitch as a bonus.

So, anything in addition to these is extra you don’t need for making window treatments and accessories.  The more that’s there, the more that can malfunction.

The reviews were looking very good on this machine.  It pays to read the Frequently Asked Questions, as well!  When I read the answer to a question about the thicknesses it will stitch over, it stopped me in my tracks.  The answer was, for hemming jeans, zig-zag the edge and turn it under once  and stitch over only two layers.

Here’s your sign:  No double-rolled jeans hem for this machine. Do you hear the buzzer sounding?

How in the world would you sew several layers of fabric when constructing window treatments made of heavy-weight fabric plus lining?  Even a corded pillow requires stitching over six layers of fabric at the cording joint – four layers around the remainder of the pillow.

So…THIS machine would be my top pick right now – without actually using  it, mind you.  I know.  Old school, right?  There is nothing wrong with old school.  Old school has served me very well for all of my life.

Singer Sewing MachineSINGER 4423 Heavy Duty Extra-High Sewing Speed Sewing Machine with Metal Frame and Stainless Steel Bedplate

But there’s no computer screen.  (Say maybe you.)

That’s right – and less to malfunction.  There’s nothing worse than your machine going out on you in the middle of a sewing project.

The 4423 got 4.5 stars, as well…and is cheaper.  And there are more details you should know – too many for me to list here. Read all the review comments, FAQ’s, and specs here*:  SINGER 4423 Heavy Duty Extra-High Sewing Speed Sewing Machine with Metal Frame and Stainless Steel Bedplate

This machine is said to be extra hardy with its heavy duty metal frame.  It will sew over several layers of fabric, which YOU WILL NEED for sewing certain home decor items.  Speed is a plus, but that’s not something that would be high on my list.

My affiliate link*:

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There is something else to consider.  If you are just learning to sew and not sure you’ll even like it, you could go with a less expensive machine with the idea of upgrading later.  There are many Brother machines for under $100.

But…the Singer 4423 is so inexpensive, it’s worth getting it for the long haul.  If you decide to never sew again, you could sell it easily on eBay – or keep it for those mending projects we all put off forever.  😉

Just so you know, I plan to order this machine and give it a test on several projects before a sure-fire recommendation.  If you’re not a follower by email posts, you can sign up here so you won’t miss out on my next post about this machine.  Plus, you get my free e-book, which is a PDF that doesn’t require a special e-reader device.  🙂

Any questions or comments about these choices?  I know I haven’t discussed other brands, but I can.  What brand would you like me to review?

Blessings~

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I’m sharing this post at Metamorphosis Monday.

A Fellow Reader’s Bedroom Sewing Success

I’ve not published a post that included pictures of a reader’s sewing project before today.  But why not, right?

Thanks, Christene, for sharing your success with us!

Christene's Shams and Spread

Christene found this great fabric on clearance at Boca Bargoons, a decorator fabric shop in Orlando.  Don’t you love that texture?

Christene's Shams

This was Christene’s first time to make a bed spread and shams.  The spread was so large, she needed help holding it while sewing.  Here’s another reason it’s called a spread:  Christene had to spread hers across two tables to assemble.

Her daughter (who loves to sew) helped.  I can’t think of a better way to spend time together as mother and daughter (except shopping, of course – ha!).

No-Flop Shams Success

Christene couldn’t remember which weight of batting I used for my Shams With a “No-Flop” Flange, so she bought 1/4″ quilt batting for her inner liner.  She says it worked just fine.

After the sewing was complete, Christene painted the walls to match the fabric.  You can just barely see it below to the left and right of the bed.

Master Bedroom Shams and Spread

It all looks beautiful, Christene!
The color-pop of orange on the bed is wonderful, too.
I know you are so proud!

Isn’t this fun – seeing a project that another reader has been doing?  Don’t you think Christene did a very  nice job on her first spread and shams?   (Me, too!)

Blessings~

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What To Do With 52 Commas

Studies show that we are more productive when we get an optimal amount of rest.

God knew that our days would be filled with hard work – sometimes extremely hard, physically, mentally, and emotionally.  His command to observe the Sabbath with rest and refrain from work was for our benefit.

Six days a week are set apart for your daily duties and regular work, but the seventh day is a day of rest dedicated to the Lord your God.
(Deuteronomy 5:13)

After busy weekdays, do you use Sunday afternoons for catching up on sleep?  Are you resting today?

The Sabbath - Our Rest

Does God need  rest?  After six days of work in creating the world, did God need a nap?  Does He get tired?

No.  God is all-powerful, and His energy is without limit.  God sat back on the seventh day and watched His creation in motion…and it was good.  He appreciated His handiwork and reflected on its beauty.

He knows we  need rest, but the purpose for the Sabbath was also for a day of special focus on Him and for appreciating His blessings.

A day for reflection.

In the same way, we can sit quietly and appreciate the accomplishments of the week and say “it was good”, soak in the blessings from the Lord, and also rest.  It’s not often that we can fully concentrate while surrounded with activity, so our Sundays are God’s gift to us, so we can focus on Him, His blessings, His accomplishments through us…and rest.

God wired us for productivity.  Often we can continue on over the course of time, absorbed in our work (and sometimes play), and not even acknowledge Him.

We need a pause.

The Sabbath is our comma.

We have fifty-two commas each year.

Take advantage of them.  You need  them.

What about the week after  the Sabbath?  With proper rest, focus, reflection, and planning for the following week, we are all set for the things God will do for us, in us, and through us the next week.

Anybody can observe the Sabbath,
but making it holy surely takes the rest of the week.
(Alice Walker)

For your rest today, here’s a collection of relaxing instrumentals to help you along as you pause to reflect.

I don’t know about you, but I enjoy the Sabbath.  Yes, we have activities at church.  But, the remainder of the day is low-key and stress-free.  It’s very nice to worship God and think about Him throughout the day more than other days allow.

Beginning on Easter when Jesus arose, God’s people set the Sabbath on Sunday, the beginning day of their week.  If you have a job that requires you to work on Sundays, choose another day of the week to be your Sabbath, your pause.  God never said it had to be on Sunday specifically.

Having the Sabbath really helps me get prepared for the coming week.  What about you?  How does the Sabbath affect the following week for you?

It’s a spectacular Sunday!  Let us rest, reflect, and praise the Lord!

Blessings, friends~

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