Friday, March 29, 2013

[Focus on Life Week 13] Faith

It is Week 13 at Ms. Sally Russick's Focus on Life:  Faith.  
For Christians, we are celebrating Holy Week, remembering the suffering and death of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

The Bible in Hebrews 11:1 (King James Version) says:
"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."

The Bible is the only inspired, infallible Word of God!  Historians agree as to the authenticity of the New and Old Testament writings.  There are people who try to disprove it but the Bible itself declares, 
"All scripture is given by inspiration of God [by the Holy Spirit]..."
"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence if things not seen."  Hebrews 11:1
One of my favorite Bible verse is John 3:16, 
"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, 
that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have everlasting life."

God the Father gave up His Son for us.  His gift of eternal life is free to us, but it cost Him crucifixion.  God loves every person with an unconditional , divine love!  He created us to live in relationship with Him, but the Bible says that sin and death entered the world through Adam.  The penalty of sin is spiritual death but Jesus willingly died on the cross, in our place, to pardon us.
"For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son,
that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life."  John 3:16
The resurrection of Jesus Christ is the central pillar of Christianity and the evidence for its historicity is conclusive.  By His resurrection, Jesus conquered sin and death, thereby offering new life, eternal life, to us!  
Jesus Christ claims to be the ONLY WAY to eternal salvation (life in heaven).

We must trust Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and receive Him by personal invitation.  Here's how:
1.  Admit your need (I am a sinner).
2.  Be willing to turn from your sins (repent).
3.  Believing that Jesus Christ died for you on the cross and rose from the grave.
4.  Through prayer, invite Jesus Christ to come in and control your like through the Holy Spirit 
(receive Him as Lord and Savior).

You have nothing to lose and everything to gain, my dear friend!
I pray that the true message of Easter will touch your heart and your mind.  
It's not all about decorating easter eggs and buying candies. 

May the good Lord bless and keep you.
♥  Michelle  ♥

Saturday, March 23, 2013

[Focus on Life Week 12] Observe the Curve

Welcome to Week 12 of Focus on Life by Ms. Sally Russick of The Studio Sublime.  This weeks challenge is:  "Observe the curve" - doesn't it sound profound?  

Hello!  This is the cord of a telephone.   
In the era of wireless phones and gadgets, we still need these old time telephones.  When I was young-er, I was so fascinated watching American TV shows or movies where the actor or actress holds a looooonnnng telephone cord while going around their kitchen - we never had those in my home back in Manila.

Do you remember when you would talk to someone over the phone and depending on how intense the conversation is, you found yourself wrapping your finger around the cord and twirling it.  This is my telephone cord sitting at my office desk.  I like it all curved in one direction following an orderly pattern.  Call me crazy but those tangled telephone cords in another persons desk bugs me... ugh!

Observe the curve.  The shadows.
It follows a pattern... a rhythm... a cycle.. an order.
It can get kinda hypnotic too, you know.

As I think of it, I don't think the old telephone will be phased out... ever!  No matter how hi-tech our mobile communication system gets, it will always be there.

♥  Michelle  ♥

Friday, March 15, 2013

[Focus on Life Week 11] The Possibilities are Endless

It's week 11 in Ms. Sally Russick's Focus on Life:  The Possibilities are Endless.
When it comes to paper quilling - the art of twirling paper - the possibilities are endless! 
Paper Quilling
 I love how colorful these papers are.  You don't need a lot of tools for this craft: - just a needle tool and glue.  You can used a needle tool or a slotted tool or even a barbecue stick.  I make the basic shapes while watching tv or when I feel like I need to relax... oh yeah, it soothes me.  
Paper Quilled Flowers
It'll be officially Spring in a few days so here's a bunch of flowers for you!
Have a good one, my friend!
♥  Michelle  ♥

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

[7th Bead Soup Blog Party] Introducing.. my partner ♥

It's almost time for the 7th Bead Soup Blog Party hosted by Ms. Lori Anderson and my 3rd partaaaay!
I like joining Lori's parties because I get to meet new friends - this year, my partner is Rebecca.  
I was so excited to receive my bead soup... Yay!
She sent me a lovely assortment of beads and findings!  I love the polymer clay heart pendant and butterfly discs that she made.  The blue lucite (i think) beads are beautiful!  I love the color palette - blues, greens and browns... nice!
7th Bead Soup Blog Party April 2013
Beads from Rebecca
These are some of Becca's works.  I like how she designs and incorporates different elements to create a cohesive look.  She made this necklace during one of the bead soup parties and it was featured by Jewelry Making magazine.  
Becca incorporated

Take a look at this "Sun" pendant that she made.  Isn't it gorgeous?
She made this necklace for the solar flare blog hop.  I love her wire work because she makes wire look so neat and very feminine.  
We will be in the 3rd reveal date which will be on April 13, 2013 so do come back and see what we came up with the beads that we sent each other.  See you soon!

♥  Michelle  ♥

Friday, March 8, 2013

[Focus on Life Week 10] All Wrapped Up!

Welcome to Week 10 of Ms. Sally Russick's Focus on Life:  "All Wrapped Up."
I will be sharing my interpretation of this challenge in a couple of ways.

First, as a jewelry designer, I enjoy working with wire though a bit challenging at times.  Freehand wire wrapping in particular is fun as it always yields a unique design while maintaining uniform shapes.  It is like being a potter who molds it to his desired shape.  
Wired beads
I would like to share with you about my first experience at the Houston Livestock and Rodeo.  I have never been to once hence the excitement!  It is the world's largest livestock show and rodeo that aims to support the youth through education and also to encourage better agricultural practices with the exhibits and various presentations.  Their banner is "Celebrating Agriculture, Education, Entertainment and Western Heritage."
Houston Rodeo 2013
Oh, there was so much to see... and eat!  One event that we enjoyed was the Mutton Bustin' where kids between 5 and 6 years old tightly wrap their hands and legs on the sheep for 8 seconds.  It was so much fun!  I never thought sheeps could run that fast.
Mutton Bustin at the Houston Rodeo 2013
We were also able to watch Bruno Mars in concert.  It was awesome!  While waiting for the show, 2 young ladies seated in front of us could not help but wrap their hands on this fluffy cotton candy.  Oh, to be young and not too scared of sugar... such bliss!

The carnival offered several activities too but we were too old scared tired to even try them. 
I love this photo - how the steel poles and lights were wrapped very securely...  Who knows how many couples have tried riding this with arms wrapped around each other .   
Carnival at The Houston Rodeo 2013
And finally, we just had to get some Tex-Mex food:  Garlic Chicken Burrito.  A burrito or taco de harina is one of the more famous Mexican dish.  It makes use of a wheat flour tortilla that is wrapped to enclose a filling, whether fish, beef, chicken or vegies.   We've tried several burritos from the homemade to the fancy ones at restaurants.  This was delicious... the seasoning was perfect, not overbearing at all.
Garlic Chicken Burrito
Thanks for reading up to this part.  Have a great weekend!

It's a wrap!
 Michelle  ♥

Friday, March 1, 2013

[Focus on Life Week 9] Knock, Knock

It's Week 9 of Focus on Life with Ms. Sally Russick and the theme is:  "Knock, Knock."
This is what I wanted to share with you today... "Our Door."
My husband and I have been married for 4 years and we made our first major move last April 2012.  We drove almost 19 hours from state to state, with loads of stuff - clothes and boxes of "my toys."
We have always been around family which was nice especially for me migrating from another country but we had to be on our own.  It was all in perfect timing, all according to God's perfect plan!
We stayed with friends for a few months just enough for us to find our own place and here it is... "Our Door."

The process in finding our own place was fun and exciting!  We prayed for it and decided on a 2 bedroom apartment which was big enough for us and my loads of crafts and tools.    It was fun visiting stores and shopping to find furniture and other techie "needs."  I have realized that no matter how long you have been with your husband, you still learn something new about one another... such as in choosing what to buy, where to put the sofa, etc.  - you know what I'm talking about.  After a few weeks or arranging and rearranging, we were happy to be finally home.

There is a frame hanging by our kitchen that reads:
4 cups of Love
2 cups of Loyalty
3 cups of Forgiveness
1 cup of Friendship
5 spoons of Hope
2 spoons of Tenderness
4 quarts of Faith
1 barrel of Laughter
To this, I add:  A load of God's grace and mercy.  It is what binds us together as husband and wife.

Thanks for reading this far.  Off to the other blogs you go, my friend!
Click on the LINK.

♥  Michelle  

[Jewelry] The Challenge of Music 2013

It is the 2nd Annual Challenge of Music blog hop by Erin of Treasures Found and I am so excited to be part of it again.  
Read about my entry last year HERE.

This year, Erin asked us to "find a piece of instrumental music that speaks to your soul."  That means, plain music - no choral accompaniment.  Oh, what a challenge with all the beautiful music around us.

The first challenge for me was to find "my music" that would allow me to interpret it in my artpiece.
The second challenge was:  How to share the music in my blog.  I wanted to try something else besides YouTube so I explored what's new in the web and came across Soundcloud.  I wanted to share a Traditional Filipino folk song/dance called "Tinikling." 

Click LISTEN to hear the song.

The music was composed by Levi Celerio (April 30, 1910 – April 2, 2002)   Celerio was a prolific songwriter, with over 4,000 songs to his credit. He is perhaps best known for being a leaf-player, a feat for which he was put into the Guinness Book of World Records. In 1997, he was namedNational Artist of the Philippines for Music. Read more about him HERE.  You must have seen this being danced during one of the cultural shows in your City that feature the Philippines.  The tinikling dance is one of the most popular and well-known of traditional Philippine dances.  Can you hear the clanking and banging sound?  The dance is comprised of 2 people who tap bamboo poles on the ground and against each other in a rhythmic manner while 1 or more dancers step in and out of the poles.
Photo grabbed from Parangal 2006

Here's a complicated version of the dance with several pairs of bamboo.

The dance originated in Leyte among the Visayan islands in the central Philippines as an imitation of the tikling bird dodging bamboo traps set by rice farmers. The dance imitates the movement of the tikling birds as they walk between grass stems, run over tree branches, or dodge bamboo traps set by rice farmers. Dancers imitate the tikling bird's legendary grace and speed by skillfully maneuvering between large bamboo poles. I chose this music because it reminds me of home - the festivities, the delicious sweet mangoes and other fruits, the beautiful and colorful floral arrangements and costumes.  This statement/bib necklace was made using wired mother of pearl diamonds that were wired to form flowers and accented by crystal beads and round pearls.
Mother of Pearl Statement Necklace
To complete the necklace, I added yoyo fabric.  What is that you ask?  It's the ruffled circles fabric - learn how to do it HERE.  It's pretty simple, just do running stitch all around your chosen fabric and gather the edges to create the ruffles and add a button or pearl to seal the open part.

♥  Michelle  ♥