Sunday, June 27, 2010

Play Time

I found a little time to play today, so this is what I did.

These are some before, after, and incorporated into my decor thrifty finds.

I knew that I wanted the small urn for my silver leaf ball, and just loved the shape and size of the small silver pedestal dish, this may not be its final resting place, or even its final color, but for now I like the two pieces together.

I also whipped up this drink cozy for my Ice Tea glass. I am currently drinking Mango Passion fruit herbal tea from Stash, and loving it.
I used a cardboard coffee cozy for my template, adding an inch to the width to accommodate my larger cup, and a 1/2 inch seam allowance. The charms were purchased at Michael's long ago and I'm glad I finally used them, but I am loving the back with my button (yes from Mom's collection) and stitched closure.

I like to use this recycled coffee house cup, because it is a great size for Iced Tea and it has a lid. My son Daniel's dog Marco will drink out of any unguarded cup he can find. Yes he is super cute and a very good boy, when we got him his was pretty skinny, and now thinks he must eat and drink at every opportunity,but I do not wish to share with the little bugger.
Hope you all had time to play this weekend too.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

A visit from Pam and Daniel

Grandson Daniel had fun with all three dogs when they visited. O'Reilly loved playing with Scruffy and Marco. Scruffy is the littlest one; Marco is the tallest. O'Reilly is still puppy enough that he wouldn't give them any rest... wanted to play all the time. Whew! They all dashed madly about, through the yard and in the house. Not so long ago Pam's dogs could escape O'Reilly's attention by jumping up onto the couch, but O'Reilly has grown so that he jumps right up too. Finally on the second day everyone settled down somewhat. But by the time they left, O'Reilly was so tired he slept most of the day.
This is my button collection. More than twenty years ago I got this glass Railroad Carboy and began to save buttons. Daniel said he had always wanted to empty it out and look at all the buttons, so we did. Pam picked out a few to use in her sewing projects, and we even found one to replace a missing button on a pair of shorts. Now they are all back in the carboy. Some of the buttons are very old, some have been cut from our throw-away clothing, and some have been donated by friends. It's always been a conversation starter, great for using in crafts, and the grandkids love it.


Here are my latest creations. I love making purses, maybe I have found my passion.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Strawberry Pie and Lavender

Here's the fresh strawberry pie. I just had enough berries left after the freezer jam. Pam and grandson Daniel are coming for a brief visit tomorrow, so will try to resist this until they arrive. Looks like the hens are watching it for me.

This lavender is from a bush by the front door. It is white lavender, and it seems to me it was white last year, but now it looks pale pink to me... Hmmm. Anyhow, it is beautiful and smells wonderful.
The view of part of the garden has another lavender bush on the right, but it isn't blooming yet. The bush in the center is a Rosemary bush. A start was given to me by Charlotte. It has gotten huge, but I love clipping sprigs for fresh bouquets, and it smells good too. Rosemary is for remembrance and whenever I smell it, I think of my friend Charlotte. On the right is the David Austin rose that I showcased earlier and used for greeting cards. I bought this rose at the Farmer's Market from a local grower. It was tiny, but had a perfect little bud in bloom, so I knew it would be beautiful. It has thrived for the past 4 or 5 years, and now is very showy and one of my favorite rose bushes this summer.

Monday, June 21, 2010


Saturday Mom & I went to a local strawberry field. There was a time when I would have picked these berries and come home with sore back, stained knees and fingers, a full tummy and great satisfaction. This time we bought 2 flats already picked. After visiting the grocery store and stocking up on sugar, pectin and freezer containers, I made strawberry freezer jam. Due to a shortage of the kind of pectin I usually use, I tried the other brand. It has a slightly different recipe, but tasted good. Back to a different store for more supplies... takes a lot of sugar and pectin and containers, as my eyes were bigger than my supply list. This time I was able to buy my favorite brand of pectin, so made some of that too. Now we can compare at some point and decide which we like best. I have an aunt who always swore by one kind, so that's all I ever used... until now.
Meantime we are eating lots of berries, which are fat, juicy, and yummy. Again I have a feeling of satisfaction, and I'm thinking maybe tomorrow I should make a fresh strawberry pie!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Red Wall

So this is my favorite area of my home right now I love the black and white and silver accents, The wall is 70's paneling and I love it painted. It did take four coats of paint to get the desired look, but I think it was definitely worth it. I got this side board at a local vintage shop and it was already black. It is the only piece of black furniture I have and I think it makes a great statement, plus it has tons of storage for stamping and scrap booking stuff. If I come home after dark and the accent light is on and my dining room curtains are open the wall just glows with warmth. I was concerned that I might get tired of the red, or not find it relaxing enough, but it has been there for almost six months and I still love it. The square bird plate is from Ross and one of my favorite pieces. The cream deer on the shelf are from the dollar store, I spray painted them and don't remember what color they were originally, but I absolutely love them now.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Flowers, Finds & Fitness

The roses are all popping out! They are gorgeous and I have to share some of them. The yard is scented with their fragrance and I can lose myself in looking at their beauty. The sun is shining, there is a little breeze, the birds are chirping, and O'Reilly loves being outside with Mom and me.
While visiting the farm again recently, I found this enamel ware-pot in a shop and couldn't resist getting it for flowers on the patio table. O'Reilly was "helping" me, and was very interested in the process... especially the dirt part and the watering part. Oh my. It looks kind of good, and I think when things grow a bit it will be even better. I put begonias in, and some trailing lobelia. I never have very good luck with begonias. I think I either over water or under water. Anyhow, they mostly die after a few weeks. I am hoping these will thrive.
Mom and I were at our fitness center early this morning to do exercises in the pool. The exercises help Mom to strengthen her back, and it's good for me too. Our pool is pretty warm, which helps... the water feels like velvet moving across your skin. We are lucky enough that most days there are only 2 or 3 other people in the water. Sometimes we have the whole pool to ourselves and that makes us feel rich and pampered.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Rose and O'Reilly

The roses are finally blooming and I love this David Austin rose so much that I have made greeting cards with it. They will be on the etsy site soon. Roses have always been a part of my garden. I think I inherited the love of them from Mom. At times we have had upwards of 50 rose bushes in our yard. I think the count is around 30 now. They are so beautiful and make wonderful cut flower bouquets. From now until November they will bloom, giving off a yummy scent as well as their variety of colors.

O'Reilly is still growing I think. Here is a picture of him after the last training class... he is curled up at my feet while I work on the computer, and is one pooped pup! Right now he is curled up on my lap. Puppies sleep a lot. He's all warm and cozy and has his little nose tucked into the crook of my elbow. It relaxes me to have him here and I suspect it is lowering my BP as well. What made me think I could get along without a dog in my life?

Sunday, June 6, 2010

New Purse

So here is my first attempt to design my own purse pattern, and I think it turned out pretty good. You may recognize the fabric from the field bag I finished last week. I had enough scraps for my new creation. I am really interested in incorporating my embroidery into my sewing and I am happy with the results on this bag, I would like to make a few improvements before I offer this bag for sale on the Etsy site, but for my first ever pattern design I am thrilled.

My Fabulous Husbands Fabulous Uncle is coming to visit us on Friday. He is a retired Priest from Minnesota, Wisconsin and Texas (depending on the time of year). He has not been to our house for at least six years and we are thrilled at his visit. My wonderful husband was an only child and Father Don is his only living relative. Fr Don is only staying for the weekend, but we will make the most of our time with him. It is also a good excuse to do all that spring cleaning I have been putting off. I needed to get the purse done so I could pack up my sewing dining room and use it to eat in, so I will have to wait at least a week to attempt another bag. So I am off to scrub and shine and will check back in soon.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Photo Cards

I'm thinking about the Etsy site and will be offering these greeting photo cards and many more. They are blank inside, waiting for your special message and there will be envelopes included of course. I love photographing flowers and my kids are always telling me to stop, and take pictures of people! I do that too, but the beauty of flowers from my garden and scenes from my travels should be preserved I think. What better way to share them than with a greeting card?

The flowers are roses and iris from the garden and the shore cards are shells, rocks, a pier and a lighthouse.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Friends and Flowers

A friend that I have known since high school asked for more garden pictures. I love the garden, and try to spend lots of time out there; weeding, cutting back, planting, dead-heading, and generally tending. I have a lot of perennials, and they bloom at different times, so there is always something to admire. A few annuals here and there, and in containers is fun.
I also love just sitting and enjoying the flowers and birds while O'Reilly runs madly about or sleeps at my feet. A cup of coffee or a glass of iced tea... or lunch on the patio with Mom makes it practically perfect. It would really be perfect if my friend could be here for lunch as well!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Dishtowels and Cloths

I am thinking "spring", so this dishtowel I embellished, and the hand-knitted cloths (two in each be-ribboned package) seem a good way to perk up my kitchen... or yours, once Pam and I get our Etsy site up and running. I love the knit cloths, which are nine inches square, and could also be used in the bathroom. I never have enough dishtowels, so am always looking for excuses to make more, and spring seems a good motivation.

I must say that our puppy O'Reilly did better in class this week! Not perfect, but better. We will keep working with him. It takes a lot of time and effort, and he is still a puppy. He has grown so much that we decided to get a larger crate for him, and he seems to like being able to stretch out in it for his snooze.