Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Finding Art Ministry - Norman Rockwell

While continuing my journey towards art ministry, I was drawn towards representations of Thanksgiving.  Historically this autumn harvest feast was celebrated to signify religious freedom.  Over centuries this holiday has lost some of it's religious intent and was replaced by a focus on family and home. During this time of the year many of us look back at all we have to be thankful for.  I feel absolutely blessed to have my two girls and loving husband and am extremely thankful for that.  My goals for my children is to teach them truly what it means to be thankful for what they have. 

During my research, I came across a quote that intrigued me:

"The pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts.  No Americans have been more impoverished than these who, nevertheless, set aside a day of thanksgiving."  - H.U. Westermayer

What a powerful message!  Those early Americans, possibly your ancestors, had none of our modern conveniences.  They buried more of their own than we can even imagine.  Yet, they still were grateful to God for providing food, shelter and the ability to worship the way they wanted.  Today a lot of us might consider these to be very simple basic needs and often times take them for granted. Reading this quote really had the wheels in my mind turning.  Too many of us (I will admit, myself included) have become focused on being the best and having the best. I really started to think about this and realized that when your time comes to take your place in Heaven - it will not matter one bit that you owned a Louis Vuitton or drove a BMW.  It's crazy to think how materialistic we have actually become.

Now - while these thoughts were going through my head, I was still searching for my Thanksgiving art ministry reference.  An image of a Norman Rockwell painting came to mind and turned out to be perfect!
Norman Rockwell is such an iconic artist who simply painted what he saw.  He enjoyed showing the America that he knew and observed.  Most of us are familiar with his Saturday Evening Post covers.  I love that the majority of his art showcases "down home" America and ordinary people in everyday life.  His paintings depict such a vivid narrative one almost feels as if they are a part of the scene. 

I am completely encouraged by his work and am inspired to take my first step in art ministry.  My plan is to create some paintings that display my interpretation of God's glory and donate them to local shelters and hospitals.  I feel this will be my way to share God's love to those less fortunate. 

Please enjoy the following Norman Rockwell paintings which show his interpretation of Thanksgiving.
Norman Rockwell Saying Grace Saturday Evening Post November 24, 1951
Norman Rockwell Thanksgiving: Girl Praying Saturday Evening Post November 27, 1943    Enjoy your day!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

My Thrifty Thursday Meal!

Recently I decided that I really need to budget and adhere to it.  My husband and I have been married for 9 years and I think I only actually stuck to a budget during our first year. As time went on and we steadily increased our income, my budgeting went out the window!

        With two small children and the economy in it's current state, I am 100% dedicated to get back on a budget and live a bit more frugal than we have  :)

Meal planning was the first step I took on this journey. Thursdays have been dubbed my Thrifty Thursdays.  Today I made a simple, yet inexpensive, chicken dinner that I like to call Garlic Chicken Noodles. 
       5 ingredients are the only requirement:

Chicken ( I use fryer chicken strips )
Egg Noodles
Olive Oil
Garlic Powder
Grated Parmesian Cheese

Boil the chicken and egg noodles in separate pots.  Drain the egg noodles.  Cut chicken into small pieces and add to the drained egg noodles.  Mix in olive oil, garlic powder and parmesian cheese to your liking.  Voila!  Very simple, inexpensive and very yummy thrify dinner. I usually add some bread and butter and a side of veggies.

Enjoy your day!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Crafting Time - Doll Tutu's

It's that time of year again - craft show time!!  Dilemma - I am having some serious crafty / artist block right now.  On top of that, I can't seem to find any extra time to work on anything!

The craft show is next weekend, November 12 and 13.  To date, I only have 7 doll tutu's, 5 child size tutu's and a handful of doll outfits and embroidered washcloths left over from last year.  AAAHHHH! What to do, what to do?!  My goal for this year was to create princess costumes for the dolls, tutu's for both children and dolls, and some quilts.  Needless to say I did not quite meet this goal!

So - for the next week I am going to set small goals and try to accomplish as much for the craft show that I can.  Tonight and for most of the day tomorrow I am going to make as many doll tutu's that I can ( or until I run out of material! )  These are actually quite simple, so I am hoping to make a good number of these.

I started by tying elastic around the doll's waist.  The first tutu that I made came out very full, so I decided to use slip knots on the rest of the tutu's. This resulted in using less tulle and the skirt's were not as full as my original - but they still look adorable!  I plan on embellishing the tutu's with some ribbon and small flowers. Now I just hope they sell at the craft show!  If not, they will be the first items on my Etsy page.   :)

Happy crafting and enjoy the day!