Thursday, November 19, 2015

November's Backyard Birds and Crafting Seed Packets

Just When We Make Our Plans...

Here in the latter part of November, Thanksgiving holiday plans are being made in many homes.  The days pass by before we can blink.  I've had a hitch in my giddy-up as some say...a hiccup in the routine.  

A week ago, I was working on a craft project to make hostess gifts for the annual Christmas Tea event at my church.  I've been cutting off sunflower heads to save the seeds.  They've been drying in my storage room for weeks.  Checking them often, I've been careful that mold does not form or they'll be useless.  A quick search on Pinterest and I found a tutorial shared on Damask Love.  Seed Packet Envelopes gave me the idea and I made my own template in Publisher.  A friend helped me fold and glue the packets.  

A view of the grand mess at the work table shows how crazy this project became while I was on a roll.  With rubber stamps, I pulled out gardening stamps to add a little color to the columbine packets.  I have a plastic bin where I keep all the seed packets, both those I've purchased and those I've saved from the garden.  

Roller glue dots and decorative washi tape help seal the outside envelope.  The front of the seed packet has a place to list the type of seed and the date they were collected.  Parchment paper envelopes hold the seeds.  I just cut and folded and taped to make the little inner packets.  Waxed paper might have been a better choice.  A small slip of paper describes planting instructions.

I've been saving seeds from the violas (Johnny Jump-Ups) since late summer.  I also had an envelope of seed I collected summer of 2014.  Some of the seed packets hold these seeds.

The sunflower seeds had a lot of extra plant matter that I didn't want to sort out...I could tell these envelopes weren't going to be large enough.  I went back to my packet template and made a larger one.  This one is printed on a lovely golden yellow card stock.  

This photo shows how much other plant matter is in with the seeds.  I just didn't think it necessary to sort out the seeds for the sake of time.  I scooped a generous amount of seed mix into the parchment paper envelope.  There's a variety of seed here; this seed will grow a variety of sizes, heights, colors of sunflowers.

A variety of flower seed packets for columbine, violas, and sunflower mix.  They'll make a lovely hostess gift for the guests at my table.

Here's where the uh-oh moment comes in...

My back was sore from the project and I needed to give my back a stretch on the exercise ball.  I placed the ball on the laminate floor (big mistake) so I could sit and lay back on it for a relaxing stretch.  As I came back up to a sitting position, the ball slipped back and out from under me.  I fell to the floor with a hard thud and a loud cry of "Ow!"  Ice and Advil were my besties for the next few days.  I was most comfortable in the recliner for about four days.  My family has done a great job picking up the slack.  I am healing but do not enjoy stairs or bending to pick up things from the floor.  Because of this, I am slowing down and re-evaluating my priorities for a while.  We are hosting my in-laws for Thanksgiving dinner next week.  One week away.  My family has been helping with the housecleaning tasks.  I'm pitching in where my back can handle it...mostly tasks done sitting or standing.  

I have some photos from the sparrows and finches outside my windows that I would like to share with you BUT I need something to share next week.  We had quite the wind event here yesterday.  A day spent running errands and shopping, I knew the wind would hit hardest in late afternoon.  I watched tumbleweeds tumble across the prairie as I drove home.  I wanted to stop and get some photos but I was more concerned with arriving back home before the gusts grew stronger.  The massive number of tumbleweeds caught by the fence lines at the edge of a field were quite a site.  One local farm has a windbreak of bushes that had caught tumbleweeds along its length.  With trees usually only on farms and ranches where they've been planted purposely, the wide open prairie is easy to view for many miles.  Semi-trucks are often blown over as they drive side ways to the wind.  Power lines were blown down in other communities near us.  It really is something to learn to live with the weather patterns here.  Our power flickered throughout the evening and went out for a brief moment during the night.  This morning, we woke to several inches of clean, white snow.  The winds have calmed and now we anticipate cold temperatures for the next week or more.

I hope to have another post next week, but with current circumstances, I may need to take off a week or two.  I've got a few new sketches completed while resting in the living room.  A new art supply order to ooh and aah over.  I now have a monitor calibrating kit to help with better fine art prints reproduction.  There's plenty to be done but the holidays may slow me down for the next month or more.  It won't do me any good to push harder or expect too I'll keep breathing and try to take it all in stride.

If the seed template is something you'd like to have, send me an email and I'll send it to you, either as a Publisher file or a PDF.  Just mention the seed packet file and I'll get it to you soon.  Keep in mind my pace and schedule is a little off for now.

Take care, stay warm, and have a Happy Thanksgiving Day!

because she must make art.

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