Spring Mantel

Spring Mantel

In my head, I always categorize my projects by punctuation.


Sometimes the project is a question mark.

Like….why did I ever start this?

Or…what do I do now?

And…yikes….what was I thinking?

Question mark projects are the worst.

These are the projects that start off with me leading the marching band.  Head held high.  Waving my baton for the world to see.  And mid-baton marching glory….my project starts playing a completely different song.

And it’s out of tune.

And the glue gun leaves a glue gun trail or my book pages wilt or I discover that I’m not good with felt as an action verb.

Then the question mark self-doubting thinking takes over and I decide I am so over it all and end up just ordering pizza and watching the Bachelorette.

Sometimes the project is simply an ellipsis or {…..}

A project that just trails off into nothingness because it never really has an ending.

And there it remains….in no-man’s land….waiting to be finished.

Waiting for someone to remember that needlepoint pillows need more than five rows of stitching or a knitted scarf should really be longer than six inches or that no one is really going to need a snuggie anymore now that the whole  pajama-gram craze has taken off.

Ellipsis projects.

As in….I started a scarf….

Or….I’ll start it tomorrow….

And….I really should finish….



And amidst all the question marks and commas and ellipses and ampersands….one type of punctuation project stands alone.

When the stars align.

When the universe rights itself on its axis.

And Willie Nelson croons out the Hallelujah Chorus accompanied by an angel choir playing banjos.



And then you know that you know that you know…..that you have created…..

…..an exclamation point project.

As in….I can’t believe it turned out!

And….this is amazing!

Or….it’s better than I could have ever even imagined!


  Milk Glass Mantel


Truly, my mantel project didn’t start off as an exclamation point project.

It went through a question mark, two ellipses and asterisk.

Until I thought of burlap.

You see, I truly adore burlap.

There are days when I think I need to start a linky party called…..”Pieces of Burlap and the People Who Love Them.”

And link up this and this and maybe about 10 of these.

And wrap myself in one of these and head out for a night on the town.

  Burlap Bow


But after all my faulty punctuation attempts…..instead of taking my burlap to paint the town red….I made two of these.

I wasn’t even sure it was going to work out.

I had no idea how to make a burlap bow.  Let alone a burlap bow festooned with boxwood.

So I took a roll of burlap and some florists wire and I twisted and turned and wrapped and scrunched.  Next, I crammed the boxwood in and added a little milk glass and an odd assortment of nests.

Then I squared my shoulders……took a deep breath and crossed my fingers.

And stepped back.


And let out my breath in one giant whoosh of relief.

Because there….on my little mantel….in my little library….was an exclamation point burlap/milk glass/birds nest/boxwood project of the first order.

And my heart smiled.

And the birds chirped and the bells rang out and the marching band started playing my song.

And I know that somewhere….


….Willie Nelson was singing :)

PPS  And if you love burlap as much as I do….check out all of my other burlap projects here.

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