Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Hope Chest Seat

 This morning I had a strange desire. Uncommon. Unusual. Weird. Out of the ordinary. I wanted to sew. I thought, "This humidity and lack of sleep is doing something to my brain." I do not like sewing. In fact, I hate sewing. I can sew, and quite well, but I have a strong distaste for it. Normally. I wasn't sure what to sew at first, since I prefer projects with words in their titles like, "Quick" and "Easy". However, there was one project I'd been thinking about doing for a while, since I saw it when I was looking at something else on the internet. I was looking here and found simple instructions for a window seat cushion. Now, at Christmas time my Mom gave me one of those foam "egg" mattress pads that go on your bed. However, instead of helping my back to feel better, it hurt worse. =S So I took it off of my bed, and my sister rolled it up and put it under the blanket I had on my hopechest. Thus, the state of my hopechest below.
 the problem was that it was always wanting to slide off, bunch up, or something, and it was difficult to open my chest as well. So when I found this tutorial, a solution made its way into my mind.
 Now, I love pictures. I love tutorials with lots of pictures. Step by step pictures.Close up pictures. Any kind of pictures, I love em. I'm a visual learner. =) So I thought to make this a little more interesting and inspiring, I'd show you some pictures to illustrate how I made the seat for my hope chest.
 First, I took the other things off. Mmhmm, yup, that is a necessary prerequisite. 

 Secondly, I gathered my materials. I used a foam mattress pad and some fabric that I bought a long time ago in hopes of making curtains, but I never got around to making them.

 Then I opened my cute little sewing box that is supposed to help motivate me to sew, I took out my measuring tape, and I measured the area that I wanted my seat to cover. Then I followed the directions on the Sew Like My Mom blog, which are as follows:
To make the cushion, I measured the top of the seat, subtracted 1 inch from the length and width, and cut 2 pieces of 1″ foam to that size. Using spray adhesive, I glued them together. Then to make the cover, I winged it! I cut a top and bottom piece the size of the foam, plus a 1/4″ seam allowance all the way around. I cut a 2.5″ strip the length of the entire perimeter of the cushion, then making it up as I went along, I sewed the top to the side, sandwiching my piping inbetween. Then I did the same for the bottom piece, and left an 8″ hole to stuff the cushion inside. Once the cushion was flat inside, I whipstitched the hole closed.

Next, I cut the foam. But I didn't take pictures of that. Or the trying to glue the two pieces together. Notice I said trying. If you have spray glue, use it. I'm convinced it would be better than the liquid stuff. Probably better than a stick too, but I didn't try that. After I set the foam aside, I cut the top and bottom pieces out of the fabric.
 I feel like I'm back in school, writing directions for an English assignment and trying not to use the same directive words more than once. First, second, next, then...
I used a rotary cutter to cut a 2.5 inch strip for the side of the seat.
 Almost finally, I sewed. Bad picture, but it works.I sewed the strip to the top section first, and then I sewed on the bottom piece, leaving one end open to put the foam in. 
 The almost finished product!
Just as I was ready to clean up, I found this flower that I had made a while ago and a black ribbon. Using "Sew No More" I made it into a little bow.
So then I pushed my foam into the pouch, whip stitched it closed, and voila! Wait, I'll show you the finished product in a minute, but I want to show the "before" again. Just for effect.

Now. Voila!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

How Much Everything Costs-An Easter Poem

 I wrote this poem as a reflection on Easter, and what my response to the Ressurection should be. You can read the stories of martyrs that I reference in Tortured For Christ by Richard Wurmbrand, which you can receive absolutely free here. It is extremely challenging.
 How Much Everything Costs
Oh Lord, my version of supreme love
Is put to shame,
As I hear the agony
Some have suffered for your name.

The torture their hearts felt as
They took the bride away
On her wedding day,
Knowing life could never be the same.
Yet still, a smile on her face.

And the wife with the small child
Who told her husband, "Stand!"

In doing so, she gave him away
For fourteen years at their hands.
And still, a smile on her face.

As they dragged her away
from the only child she had,
She cried, "Son, believe in Jesus!"
The only words she had time to say,
And the most important anyway.

They counted the cost,
they considered the price,
They rejoiced in what they could give.
Surrendering their dearest loved ones,
Their own bodies to unspeakable tortures,
And still, a smile on their face.

For they have learned
Much more than I 
What it means to
"Take up your cross, love me more,
Hate your father, wife, and friends.
Come follow me,
Give your everything."
Gladly they did it too,
For Your love compelled them
To tell of Your resurrection
So others could be born again.

And here I sit,
The doors open wide,
To tell our gospel, the great news!
And who have I told,
Though no one will harm me?
Of my freedom to share,
I rarely make use.

We talk of "radical" love,
Of pouring our lives out,
For the one who poured His out for us.
But do we really know
The things we are saying?
How much "everything" really costs?

 "For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again." 2 Corinthians 5:14&15
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