The Dangler of International Happiness

Some time ago – maybe three or four months back the lovely Fran at The Road to Serendipity had one of her sparkling good ideas and decided that I needed to have – and I quote ‘A Dangler of International Happiness’.  It was an off-the-cuff, spur of the moment, random act of kindness that half delighted and half terrified me.

To this end she invited all her readers who wished to, to send me something I could create said ‘Dangler’ with.  I was supposed to also invite any of my readers who wished to, to also participate but I had a momentary meltdown in confidence and decided not to do that.  At that time I was the recipient of what seemed like an overwhelming amount of gifts from far and near and I felt asking for more was just plain greedy!  Silly I know, but there we have it!

Several of our mutual blogging friends committed to send something and over the ensuing weeks little packets arrived in my letter box.  Some came with beautiful little notes and messages,

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some with longer letters and little notes on envelopes.  All were equally welcomed and treasured.

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The gifts sat on a tray in my art room, a vastly different array of items, from tiny glass beads to big wooden beads, threads of broken jewelry, ribbons, glass hearts, buttons, crochet flowers, palm frond spirals, lengths of ribbon, hearts with names on and a guitar pic.  All mixed in with my collection of broken sun catchers and glass hearts, flowers and chandelier chains.  There is such a huge variety of items I was quite bedazzled by them and I had no idea where to begin.

Dangler1 Nov

I wanted to incorporate the smaller notes into the dangler and I needed to think about how that might happen.  That took a while!

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I also needed to decide on shape – was it to be one long thread or several long threads?  One morning I stumbled upon an unused plastic embroidery hoop which was the perfect size and the shape dilemma was solved.

Still all the bits sat in the tray, overflowed really.  Siddy ate one of the little notes and later, another.  I moved the tray and got on with my painting.  October ended.

November arrived.  I signed up for FBF Goalfest again!  So this is the month when I am finishing – well starting and finishing – my ‘Dangler of International Happiness’ which nine dear friends have contributed to. and whose contributions continued to be sitting in a pile in the designated tray waiting to be allotted their place on the plastic hoop.

I wrapped the hoop with ribbon.  I divided the hoop roughly into three and in each third hung a palm frond spiral from Christi and Keith and all Fran’s beads threaded onto one drop of wire.  I added three of Linne’s hand died ribbons and topped the dangler with Kym’s three gold leaves.  The dangler was up and almost balanced.

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That turned out to be the hardest part.  The rest was a joy of playing, threading, joining, adding and hanging.

Alys had sent three little hearts with names on.  I wanted to ensure her handwriting stayed safe so I laminated them

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Doing that also made me realise I could laminate all the precious little extras – well, the ones Siddy hadn’t eaten that is.  Alys’ hearts also inspired me to make  a heart for each participant in the dangler and include them as part of the finished piece.

Here it is

dangly14

dangly1dangly18 dangly9

dangly13

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I am totally in love with it and now have a constant reminder of some of my friends from around the globe.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Thank you to dear Fran, whose idea it was and to Stevie-boy for the splash of bright colour from his guitar pic.  Do you notice how I played it up with matching beads?  What do you think?  I wrote out the message you left me in a comment somewhere about the key and included it behind said key – you can see it in one of the photos.

Thank you Dr. Snail for the crochet flowers that help balance the circle and weight it at the bottom.  The two gorgeous antique buttons are not hung, I couldn’t get them to hang straight so I am saving them for another project – I love them!

Thank you to Linne for the pretty ribbons of just the right colours that divide the circle and make little bows at the top with Kym’s gold leaves and the necklace that hangs entire within.

Thank you to Kym for the pretty gold leaves that also divide the circle perfectly and look so nice at the top of the dangler.

Thank you Wendy for the wonderful assortment of jewellery pieces that you can see add sparkle and depth all around the dangler.

Thank you Christi and Keith, your ‘invention’ of palm frond spirals makes me smile.  You made them and sent them all the way from Hawaii and they were still first to arrive in the letter box!  Your happy, waving cartoon figures, drawn so wonderfully onto the mail packet, are now laminated and hanging on the dangler.

Thank you Alys for the beautiful and thoughtful and care filled hearts and beads and pictures with accompanying notes.  I’m so sorry Siddy ate two of the papers, though I don’t think he is – he had a wonderful time with them.  I managed to save the ‘Joy’ piece and it is laminated and hanging.

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I wish you could see it.  It glitters and sparkles and shifts shape.  It sighs softly.  I think I want to add some bells in and hang it in a window so the breeze will make it sing.

I am totally in love with the idea of sending small bits of designated things to other bloggers and then seeing what they come up with – it is such a challenge, such a gift and just another way of making this lovely community of ours more vibrant and supportive.

Is there something you would like to make that we can contribute to?  For example Jan at The Snail of Happiness made a blanket with squares from all around the world.

Thanks for coming by today, I love that you did!  🙂

 

 

 

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98 thoughts on “The Dangler of International Happiness

  1. I’m revisiting your lovely blog today, and enjoying all over again this lovely creation. What a joyful piece of art, created with bits and bobs from your global blogging community. It warms me each time I see it.

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    • Alys, that is so sweet! I wish I’d known you were popping back – I would have put down my paintbrush and made a lovely cup of tea for you. You would have seen the dangler swaying gently in the slight breeze that sighs past it from time to time. You may even have heard it jangle more urgently as my head hits it when I make a sudden movement for another paint colour. I’m just finishing the first painting exercise of my course 🙂

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      • I like that image of the dangler brushing against your shoulder as you get up from your crafting table. How is your class going so far? I hope you’re having fun. I like the image of you creating in your “create” room and look forward to the next piece of art..

        One of the items on my to do list now that the holidays are over is to frame the lovely piece of stamp art from you. I have a few things I would like to frame, but always find the decision process exhausting. I need to plan the trip when I’m energized.

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        • I am having fun – just finished the first painting and am now ready to have another go at it on a larger scale!

          The stamp art is quite fragile and I worry about it. The original intention was to put several layers of melted beeswax over it – but the pliable paper and long journey aspect had me second guessing my decision – so it went unsealed. The sooner it is behind glass the better 🙂 [for me!] I love choosing frames and am sorry to hear you find it exhausting. If I lived just a wee tad closer I could come with – what fun that would be!

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          • That would be great fun, Pauline. I’m glad you told me about the fragility of the piece. It is safely enclosed in a folder and will stay so till framed. This will be good impetus to get moving. January is also a good month to get deals on framing, so that came into play as well.

            I’ll let you know.

            So, have you finished a painting in ‘miniature’ so to speak, before tackling the same piece on a larger scale?

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  2. I am always so amazed, Pauline, as to the depth of your creativity (and heart) and wish the surge of inspiration that flows from reading and viewing your projects and posts would translate to something tangible. Alas, my Dangler would likely only contain my favorite words–most of them being the names of single malt scotches, and I doubt many of them would provide dulcet tinkling tones when read aloud, but still … it’s the thought, right?
    Regardless, I am a keen admirer of your ample talents!

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    • Ah, but just imagine if each of your readers sent a miniature bottle from their part of the world. You could not only conduct a global investigation into the properties of malt scotches from various regions, but also take said miniature bottles [empty of course] and hang them somewhere – what a gorgeous tinkley sound they would make.. Win-win situation it seems to me 🙂

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  3. Pingback: In Search of the Handbasket | insearchofitall

  4. What a truly beautiful and kind idea – your creation out of these true gifts of the heart from around the world is something to be treasured forever. A Unique, captivating, and stunning reminder of the kindness of others. And you are one amazingly creative lady Pauline, you really are 🙂

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  5. The International feeling is definitely zooming around the world, capturing ‘ooh’s’ and ‘ahh’s’ and our hearts along the way, Pauline! This is incredibly creative and fabulous! I love the way the jewels and personal touches were broken down in your description, so we could see the progression and additions until the final extravaganza was revealed! Wow! I love this!

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    • I wanted to tell you that I hope you, Siddy, Orlando and your family have a wonderful December. You are such a giving and kind person, Pauline! Smiles and enjoy this Season of Peace with blessings sent your way.

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      • Robin I am so glad you came back and added to your comment, as somehow or other I see I have missed responding to your original message – and another commenter as well! My apologies!

        I am so pleased you liked the outcome of the Dangler – it really is very pretty as it tinkles and sways and glitters and gleams in the light – the photos just show the ‘stuff’ not the living essence of the thing. I love it!

        We are having a very busy month with house moving [my daughter] house guests [my oldest and dearest friend on her annual pilgrimage south to check up on me] the make over of my art room [half done] and Christmas flying in at ever increasing speed!

        I know I am missing commenting on some posts, including yours, but I am reading! I hope you are having a more leisurely December, or at least not stressing and enjoying the anticipation 🙂 I too look forward to our continued sharing xoxo

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  6. wow..I missed this one again..I have been watching my grandson the past few days, so did not get near a computer–how do young mothers work, take care of kids + spend time on pinterest????lol…
    Just beautiful!!!! You are blessed with great blogging friends + gifted with artistic talent…I love how you included them in your piece…that is a keeper!

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    • Yes, you are so right! I notice people entering the house want to touch it and look more closely too. Thank you for coming by and taking time to comment – it is always so lovely to hear from new readers 🙂

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  7. Well I surely don’t remember that blog post but how great to see the result of it.
    What a lovely dangler this is, just full of lovely bits from friends. It must make you smile each time you see it.
    You crafters are all so generous and gifted.
    I’m glad to be in your circles – or just outside in that I don’t craft 🙂

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    • I don’t think it was ever a blog post Laurie, though it may have got mention in one of Fran’s long rambles once – it was thrown about in the comments section of one of Fran’s blog posts and on fb. It was probably pretty easy to miss 🙂

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  8. Pingback: The kindness of friends | The Snail of Happiness

  9. Totally lovely. You have an artist’s eye for putting things together in interesting ways. Siddy is just adorable. So much like my little Yarn Rascal who shredded half the paper chart I made for a shawl I’m working on last night. Like Siddy, Yarn Rascal must be close by at all times and if I have to leave the room even for a second, it’s best to gather everything up and put it out of reach.

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  10. Well what a triumph of colour, bling, creativity and friendship! Well done and I think the bells idea is a good one too. Bet it makes you smile every time you look at it. Made me smile too x

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    • Yes, exactly so – all the things you said! So glad you smiled Kym. Your leaves are the perfect topper! Isn’t it amazing how it all worked out and came together – it really is so much lovelier than the photos show.

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  11. Oh my goodness, what a beautiful creation. I read this on my phone earlier today, but knew better than to comment from there. I’m back revisiting post of beauty, grace and friendship. I’m just amazed at the whole you’ve pulled together representing different bloggers from around the world. People are so involved and so generous. What fun!

    The colors are beautiful. I was picturing one, long chain when I first heard the idea. This is so interesting and shows off all the shapes and colors to great affect. I’m tickled that you’ve included a heart for all participants. I mirror the suggestions for tinkling bells. Lovely idea.

    I’m sorry to hear that Siddy ate two of the bits of paper. I hope the ‘passing of the notes’ wasn’t of too much concern. 😉

    Mouse likes to chew the corners of my file folders. I don’t know what it is about paper. This is my last post of the night (it’s passed midnight here). It will be nice to go to sleep thinking about this Dangler of International Happiness. xox

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    • I hope the hearts tinkled their way into your dreams Alys and you had a restful sleep. You had printed the notes on tissue paper or deli paper I think and they kind of dissolved in his mouth. I made a long explanation of the whole thing earlier to Jill in these comments. If you read that you’ll have a better understanding of what is behind poor Siddy’s bad behaviour.

      I bought some bells today from the $2 shop and will string them together and add them in tomorrow. Great fun!
      xoxo

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  12. I missed the request 😦 But you received so many lovely items and how beautiful it turned out!! Just the thing to remember how much everyone adores you.

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  13. Oh, I wish I’d seen this on The Road To Serendipity – I read that blog usually, and I would have loved to have contributed to this. It’s beautiful, beautiful, beautiful, and you can just see the friendship and joy radiating out from it. What a wonderful idea.

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  14. What a delightful project, Pauline, your Dangler is beautiful. How wonderful that you have a tangible reminder of some of your cyber friends, it makes us all that more real! Thanks for sharing your amazing creativity.

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  15. Your charms are charming all who stop by. You’ve done a great job of taking this and that and whipping it into something lovely and meaningful. I did hear of this project through the grapevine a little late to participate. But i couldn’t have imagined how you would put it all together. I think it’s totally you. Very etherial and something a wise gypsy gal might have on her caravan. I like the idea of bells ringing softly in the breeze and actually envy you to be able to open you windows to enjoy it. That’s one thing I really don’t care for during the winter months, closed windows are the pits :/ xoxo Enjoy my dear!

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    • I went to the $2 shop and got some bells today. I shall string them together and add them in and hang it by the window and let it tinkle away merrily – as soon as this cold southerly wind dies away and stays away!

      I had no idea how I was going to do it either – the original idea was a long string, like a sun catcher, but the items were so many and so varied it needed another option. Enter the unused embroidery hoop 🙂

      I so fancy being a wise gypsy gal in a caravan – I even have a picture of one that would do nicely 🙂

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    • It is a treasure! Isn’t it wonderful what you can do with bits of broken jewellery! It would never have occurred to me to do this with my stuff and when your package arrived I rushed and found my bag of bits and joined them altogether. I think they look great! I’m tempted to gather more bits together and make one for the garden!

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      • Oh you should, it’s so lovely! I will have to make something like this myself with all my bits. I just collected broken sparklies etc at garage sales for years, I don’t feel comfortable wearing them but still like pretty stuff. It’s given me ideas for a one day project.

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  16. This is so beautiful! Your creativity inspires me:) Now you’ve got bits and pieces of your friends from all over the world. I know that you smile each time you look at it. Enjoy your dangler of happiness, Pauline.

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    • There’s a lot of smiling going on with this post Elaine – it is so much fun. And I am so happy to know that one can take a disparate collection of bits and bobs and turn them into something pretty, eye-catching and tinkley!

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  17. Goodness, Pauline! The Dangler of International Happiness is gorgeous! You’ve done a wonderful job and you’ve made many great friends from all around the globe.You inspire me, not only with your talent and creativity, but by the fact that you are openly human (things can sit and sit and you don’t get to them but then you do when you can. I love that!) I hope The DoIH makes you smile every day because you make so many people in Blogland smile every day! xoxoxox

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    • I think it will make me smile for a long time Dani! I am tickled that you find my well endowed proclivity for procrastination makes me ‘openly human’ 🙂 Good to know there’s an up side to it. Thank you for making me giggle 🙂

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  18. I’m flabbergasted! What you’ve done with those bits and pieces is nothing short of genius! You never cease to amaze me with all your creativity. If I were home right now, I would send you bells in a heartbeat. I won’t be there for 2 more weeks and it will take 2 weeks after for the mail to get them to your little corner of the world. You inspire me in ways you can’t even imagine. I have shown my son and daughter the things you create and tell everyone who will listen about the wonderful things you create. Tonight will be show and tell again. Good thing my children appreciate art in all forms. You have outdone yourself again.

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    • Oh Marlene – that’s going a bit far – but you make me smile and I so appreciate your enthusiasm 🙂 If you really want to send a bell [or anything] I would be most honoured and will happily incorporate it into the dangler along with a heart bearing your name 🙂 But don’t feel you have to!

      Once I got the form and the three divisions made it was a breeze and a really enjoyable, almost meditative process. It is made 100% from gifts and items from my stash – and that is really pleasing. It is making me look with new eyes at a pile of stuff laying around, left over from finished projects and looking pretty unimpressive and wondering what might be done with them. 🙂

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    • th firz wun woz reeli tasti orl abert hartz an i et idall 🙂 the nex wun woz onli harv et coz mumma sor me ed it an she tork croz ad me 😦 bud she pud id on flor an mi job iz to ed up all on flor an i don no y she woz croz. url wod u do wen yor ppel croz ad u? yor fren siddy

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  19. Fran is hiding! What an absolutely amazing scrumptiously glorious serenade to friendship from across the waves Ms Pauline! I salute your gorgeous way of assembling that tumbley assortment of other people’s hopefulness into that amazing twirling brightly coloured reminder that you are loved and that your wonderful thoughtful comments, your hilarious blog posts and “YOU” brighten up our days as much as that dangler is brightening up your (wherever the heck you put it). I agree, add bells, add fireworks, add lots of jingly jangly things so that whenever the wind blows you remember that you have true friends all over the world. I am just glad that we could all add to something so very beautiful. You are the talent that put that motley crew of detritus to amazingly good use and turned it from a pile of “stuff” into something wonderful 🙂

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    • Dr Snail and I think now it is your turn to have a dangler – or a blanket of handmade squares from all your friends – or a something else if there is another option open to us. I shall write an invitorial blog post and you will re-post it and there it will be 🙂 What do you think?

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      • Both the blanket and the dangler were for a reason. They were illustrative of how awesome people can be when they all pull together and do something but I don’t need anything. I already think I am about as lucky as a person can get so lets think of someone who could really use a pick-me-up and do something for them?

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        • I didn’t NEED a dangler either. But now I have one and it is incredibly delicious! . Maybe now it’s your turn to [get out of your own way] graciously accept the love and let us have fun sending stuff to Tassie! 🙂 When we’ve done you we can get something going for Marlene. I think she should have a dangler too!

          Your thoughts ma’am?

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          • My problem is that I don’t do what you guys do with bells and whistles and bits of string. I am not in the remotest bit artistic like that and what I turned out would be a social abomination that shouldn’t even be thought about, let alone be brought into an unsuspecting world. I have no idea what anyone could send me that I could actually create anything out of. I have words and I garden. If anyone wants to send me some seeds I could create a garden plot of international great happiness…I wonder how many of them would get through! Seriously though, I think that we should head straight for Marlene, do not pass go and do not send narf $200 😉

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  20. Everything you touch turns into a work of art, Pauline! This is beautiful and a constant reminder of all the love and happiness that travels via WordPress and all its wonderful people. I’m shocked to hear that my little pal Siddy would do something so mischievous. I just don’t believe it. 🙂 Thanks for sharing! xo

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    • It is a wonderful community isn’t it Jill – I feel really blessed with all my friends 🙂

      It wasn’t all poor Siddy’s fault Jill. He takes his work very seriously. First and foremost he is ‘companion’ and this means he must be near by, whatever I’m doing and wherever I go. Often this means waking up enough to waddle into another room before collapsing again. Second in importance is ‘first greeter’ of people at the door, this work is undertaken with much enthusiasm. A third job was added to his CV as a result of the first. When acting as ‘companion’ in the kitchen Siddy added in ‘hoover’ to his list of accomplishments. He has learnt to be very agile around feet that move abruptly in any direction and quick darts clean up any potential mess that might afflict the floor. This task has been transferred to other rooms.

      While sorting items for inclusion in the dangler I inadvertently dropped the tissue paper slips onto the floor and didn’t realise it. Siddy’s happy dance made me aware there was something hanging out of his mouth that really shouldn’t and I retrieved the sodden and ruined remains of a note. A day or two later and the scenario was repeated. Poor Siddy, he really doesn’t understand why ALL his things are okay on the floor and yet sometimes there is stuff there that isn’t for him.

      I hope this explanation raises him back up in your esteem 🙂

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  21. Pauline, you made a work of art from all these bits and pieces from such fine friends! I think it’s good that you waited awhile to make the dangler–it let all the ideas percolate and simmer until you got something just right. And I love the idea of adding bells or something to make it into a wind chime–it’ll be like hearing people’s whispers to you!

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  22. I was just about to eat dinner when I noticed your post… my chicken casserole is now going cold in the kitchen because I just HAD to look at your dangler of international happiness before I could do anything else. It’s LOVELY. Mabel would have been delighted too!
    I hope you find a use for the buttons in another creative project.
    Now, what can we do for Fran?

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    • 🙂 Sorry about your dinner Jan! Project the next but one will be a shrug made with Tunisian stitch and I am hopeful at least one of the buttons might make its way onto that. I feel I want them to be shown off a bit and I can tell their story then too. Do you think Mabel would like that?

      I am of the opinion that we should all send Fran a little something that can be melded together to make her very own dangler of international happiness. I wondered about crochet or knitted squares so she could make her own blanket, but Earl might eat it – Maybe I’ll ask her opinion and then we’ll get something underway.

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