31 October 2006

Happy Halloween...

The Sock Monkeys and I wish all our little Pumpkins Happy Halloween, Happy Samhain, Happy New Year, and Happy Haunting!

30 October 2006

Sunday October 29th...


  • Alberta
  • Megan
  • Rozzilyn
  • Sadira
  • Susan

Well, can you say Full House? My goodness...we were certainly having a wonderful Creative Sunday! This week, we were joined by Alberta (her first time) and by Megan...Per. first time Creative Sunday, Alberta came and joined in on all the good conversation...and fabulous food eating, with a promise to create next time (sometimes, you just have to ease into these things) We ate yummy guacamole chips, and veggies...a salad with seed cheese (courtesy of the raw food eater, my mother) and greens and cornbread (courtesy of Megan...who made the cornbread perfectly...without sugar...and the greens were delicious too!)

I started my Creative Sunday by waking up late (9:00 thank you!) which I hardly ever do...and running around like a banshee getting the house ready for everyone. I made 2 loaves of banana bread to eat with soy whipped cream and raspberries, and a batch of pumpkin muffins.

I also cut and hung all the little tassel trim on my curtains. I originally wanted to use dark brown tassels but kind of backed off at the $7.99/yard price tag at the fabric store. The next weekend, I found a large quantity of this tassel trim in a green color that actually matches for only $3 for the entire roll (I did all the curtain tops and have quite a bit left over...pillow trim perhaps?) I just ran it along the top and used the curtain clips to hold it in place. I like the way it drapes loosely with the curtains (I'm also not wanting to take the curtains down again and sew these on)

Megan brought some mending with her...I helped sew up some seams on a wonderful vintage dress and bolero jacket that I was coveting, so that she can wear them again...and we decided to do some freezer paper stenciling on tote bags! This was her first time, and she's been following along in the blog, and has been fascinated with the process.

Megan is taking a print making class at the college, and we got to talking about that process as well...and carrying that onto bags and t-shirts. Megan's bag is the bag on the left...the one I made is on the right...and will be for sale in the shop sometime this week. I am down to only 1 bag like that in the shop.

Rozzilyn set up the Polly's and played quite a bit...this is Pollyland...Pollywood...a herd of Polly's. I'm not sure what you call them....but there were a lot!

And...Mama worked on Rozzie's Halloween costume! Rozzilyn is going to be Olive Oyle this year, and can you believe that we've waited this long? Usually we go all out and try to all dress up together as a theme. I don't even have a costume, and may just wear one of my velvet cloaks to go with Rozzie trick-or-treating tomorrow night.

From what I've been hearing from all of my friends, there's a lot of us doing this, and feeling a little un-Halloween-ie. I mean, I know that my house is decorated, but I just picked up my pumpkin on Saturday night...from the Health food store. No pumpkin patches here. This is the last year for Young's Farm and Colliers Family Farm is no longer doing it. I am so sad that we don't have this option anymore. I mean, we have such a fertile valley in Chino, and as far as I know, no one is doing pumpkins anymore...Phoenix, the hottest place on earth has pumpkin farms. Going to a farm to choose our own pumpkins has become a part of our lives for many many years now. Perhaps someone up here will decide to do this for next year...If not, I guess it's the Health food store again. I guess it's progress that is making the land worth more as a neighborhood development rather than a small town farm. At least I did get my pumpkin so I can enjoy the seeds...I'll be back tomorrow with a new custom and some pictures of our trick-or-treating!

27 October 2006

Pizza Night...

In the spirit of wonderful friends, and being a bit broke...I mean, in a creative dinner mood, Dina and her sweet son Niko came over last night for make your own flat bread pizza. Niko is a master pizza designer enjoying making both his own pizza and helping me with the design of mine as well (creative? I think so!) plus eating a couple of raw mushrooms, surprising both Dina and I. We also made some wonderful dessert...we were at the grocery picking up those last minute pizza toppings and spied some raspberries for 99 cents, and grabbed them...thinking they would go great on pound cake. I remembered that I had some banana bread at home...so the banana bread was topped with soy whipped cream and raspberries, and enjoyed very much! (plus a bit of eggnog we also couldn't resist...while opening it, Dina was shaking it and singing the milk shake song...although, her milk-shake didn't bring any boys to the yard...darn)

Niko also brought over his little train puzzle...carefully put together by 2 adults (seriously, they need to number the puzzle pieces) and run by the boy. It's a great toy! The train runs on the track all by itself, as long as you put all the pieces together right that is, and is rather maniacal as it runs quite fast and hits most of the signs they give you to set up on top of the puzzle...scattering them about. While showing me exactly how it worked he realized that he'd gotten scratched by my cat and felt over the top sad about it, not even a Care Bear band-aid would help! After time, he felt a little calmer, and we were able to make him feel 100% better with a bite from one of those snack sized Snickers that are laying around for Halloween (who knew...Sinckers actually does satisfy...) He also enjoyed playing with the toys I have special in the house for whatever little person comes over. He loved the View Master...and talked about playing with it the next time he came over. I realized I have a lot of view Master reels that depict places all over the US, and was thinking the next time I really need to take a vacation, one is right at my fingertips (so to speak) Dina and I were also wondering if they ever made any View Master porn? Which, after all seriousness of thinking what a cool idea that was, put us in a fit of giggles...we actually googled it, you know, just to make sure (no luck...sigh)

Niko also informed me that one of the main purposes of spiders was to lick your kitchen floor. So, if anyone knows a herd of spiders for rent, I could certainly use one...the kitchen floor is in need of a good spider licking...
I wonder if they lick dishes too?

26 October 2006

Fridge meme...

I just popped over to (4:53 am) ...which I actually haven't done in a while, since the last Rhonna Farrar challenge, which is silly because I really enjoy her posts! Anywho...she had this great refrigerator meme...

Take a picture of your fridge right now...
no rearranging.

And, I did a close-up, because I realized how personal and fun people's refrigerators are (well that, and I'm a total dork) So, the little brown piece of paper is a thank you note from Rozzie for a Halloween costume I bought her last year, and on the bottom left, is a little Curious George picture she drew me a long time ago...and then the Little Drummer Boy to the left of that. I love kid's art...and since I've forgotten to have children of my own, I love to display anyone's children's art on my fridge. The card above them all to the left portrays a woman and says, "She spoke in exclamations, now that she found her voice" (I'm trying!)

OK...on the little black cork board is the picture of my father and I a looong time ago...Zora's first baby picture, a Hanunan the monkey god postcard...a Bushism that says "You teach a child to read, he or her will be able to pass a literacy test" the "Have you seen this wizard" from the last Harry Potter movie...a ticket stub from Steven Wright (both of those were gifts from my ex-husband...sigh) and a card with a little girl on the moon that says "Tell me what it is that you plan to do with your one wild precious life?" and to the left of that is a birthday card with the lady in the gas mask that my sister sent me that says "Birthday Greetings from Hong Kong" (whatever...I love it though!)

I love these 3 magnets...2 from the screaming man. The skeleton one says "what was I saving my money for?" and the angels are singing "get off your ass!!" and I certainly think that you can read the one on the bottom!

And, I decided to do the side too...because the fridge is in such and odd place (welcome to everything in the house is long the wrong way...ie. rectangular rooms) so you see this side when you walk into the room. 2 pictures at the top of Ms. Rozz when she was really little at the pumpkin patch...a Kitchen Aid magnetic clip and red timer. And a little paper doll from Wee Wonderfuls that I made into magnets. And a chart for what's in season in what months!

So, there you go...run into the kitchen right now and take a picture of your fridge...no rearranging...and leave a comment for me so I can check it out!

25 October 2006

Vintage Thrifty...

I was at the thrift on Monday, my normal thrifting day for the thrift that is on the other side of town (because with the gas prices being what they are...I try to only drive twice a week, and walk all the rest of the time...so the far away errands are sometimes all lumped together) and spied this lovely vintage dress. I am enjoying the striped fabric and all the floral goodness. And, the best part is:

It's new, brand new...new to me, and new with tags! It's Styled by Miss Smith The American Look, and was $6.98 new (less than the $7.99 I paid...this thrift is a rip-off) And is made with A Fabric You Can Lean On By Kopman...This consists of 65% "Dacron"Polyester/35% Combed Cotton and is a Du Pont fabric. I know what you're thinking...all of my problems are solved!

Now, I can wash by hand or machine...when washing, use warm (not hot) water and tumble dry at low or medium heat. If necessary to press (with that fabric content?!?) use warm (not hot) iron. Tee-Hee...I just giggled to myself when I read this and wondered if the reason this wasn't worn is because we're in Arizona, and it's darned hot here...I mean, I'm a little worried about the Du Pont-ness and the heat issues...perhaps it's safer for me to only use this as a winter dress? I think that with the Poly blend, perhaps it will keep me warmer this winter...and, as long as I don't stand too close to any heating elements, I should be safe right?

24 October 2006

What's Your Rating?

I've been watching movies seemingly non-stop during my weekend. It all started Saturday night with My Pal Amy and Prairie Home Companion (Garrison Keillor...yay/ending...boo) Curious George on Sunday with the group (yay all around, although it was a little touch and go towards the end...a lot of animated tension) and yesterday...Friends With Money (a little slice of life,ending...boo) The Break-up (funny, true to life, ending...boo) and Garfield, A Tale of 2 Kitties (good, like the original...and, Rozzie wanted to see it) All in all, looking at patterns, because, let's face it...that's what I do (incessantly much to my utter exhaustion) not many satisfying endings this weekend...a reflection of my life? Perhaps.

Then, during the rating screen of one of these fine movies up popped:

R- Bad Language, Some Sexual Content and Brief Drug Use.

Hmmm...sounds like my life. Of course, it's been a little PG lately, perhaps PG-13 as there is bad language, but quite a bit of comedy, or is it drama? Well, whatever has been happening, both have been making me cry...and the ending is a little cloudy as well...much like my recent movie watching experiences. What's your rating?

And, on another note...here's the water during the second soak of the ticking, and the third soak is still an interesting color (nicely putting it) it's like a Tootsie Pop ad.

How many soaks will it take to get the water clean?

23 October 2006

Sunday October 22nd...

  • Rozzilyn
  • Susan
  • Sadira

We almost went on a little field trip to Sedona and Flagstaff...almost, and then realized we'd have to be travelling in the car to and from the place, and were so overwhelmed by that thought, we stayed in town (Another one of those weeks!)

I started out the day by making some Halloween cards...no real pictures though, because I will be sending these to some of my blog readers, and I don't want to ruin the surprise...so, just an extreme closeup for now!

And then finally bowing to peer pressure, I made the rest of the vintage dress that I made this skirt from...into a top. I absolutely love this pattern, and I was thinking of using all the left-over material to make a little holiday banner, but everyone who has actually seen this top was telling me that it must remain a top...so a top it remains.

As a two piece outfit, it is lovely...as an entire dress...not so much. For some strange reason, I cut it just perfect while cutting out the skirt with all the curves and the length of a top...so, all it needed was a little hemming (this does not explain, however, why it was laying around waiting so long to be finished!)...my mother especially loves it because the entire pattern shows up on the back...and on the front fastening it together, is little black glass buttons. It's really wonderful!

And, at a yard sale this weekend, I spotted this lovely material in a box someone was unpacking...I quickly put down the green tassels I was looking at (and later bought for the tops of my living room curtains) and ran over to the box...

I discovered that the floral material was the backing to this lovely velvet crazy quilt. The nice lady made sure that I knew that the velvet side was a bit worn in some places before she would sell it to me for $3. I was just really happy about the floral material...then I noticed that in the places where the velvet had entirely worn away, I could see ticking. I love ticking. Love it. The sideboard in the "who I am" section should be getting longer...

Now, I decided to get this floral material soaking today. As I snuggled down to the floor to get to work, I realized that this material was only tacked on to the back of this quilt and came off quite easily. Originally I thought that the ticking was sewn onto the floral stuff...so, imagine my surprise when I realized that the backing had been replaced (the other backing was sweet roses, but had completely deteriorated at some point, there were traces of it) and the velvet had been sewed to these scraps of material.

Well, I knew what I needed to do...save that ticking! (I need another duvet cover for the extra feather comforter I use for winter after all) First though, my mother had me document the back of the quilt before we ripped into it. There is the most wonderful blocks of blue denim looking material that my mother gets to take home...you can see the white worn lines in it where it was faded from whatever it was in it's previous life. There were long hand done stitches in it making us think that whatever it had been, a dress or a shirt, someone had hand made it rather than using a machine (which makes us both think that the material is quite old) and then worn it and worn it...I love this stuff. I loved digging into this quilt and taking the pieces apart so I can use them again...we were discussing the fact that the women who made this quilt were probably looking down and smiling (or laughing because we were covered in dust and velvet crumbs...all the while the thought, "you're going to get some horrible disease and die" the thing my grandmother used to say to my mother when she drug home stuff from the thrift in the 60's) We also thought that maybe we should try to put all the pieces together again but would probably end up with a shirt with one arm missing, a pair of pants without half a leg and a dress with no top. I also loved sitting on the floor with my mother and taking this apart...the time we spend together is really special, and the shared love of rescuing textiles (and anything old) makes for wonderful memories. Plus she got to go home with a bag of velvet pieces (lucky her)

And her continuing project for today (this deconstruction of a quilt took quite a while) and in keeping with the theme of, "boy we hate to throw anything away" was to take the mummy material that had all but disintegrated (look at the whitish stuff in the previous picture) shred it a bit more, and drape it over my new feather tree. Now the tree looks complete and a bit spooky as the mummy material flutters anytime anyone walks by...

For our afternoon tea um...coffee, after our walk (and to clear our lungs from the inhalation of 100 year old quilt dust) we had these lovely chocolate kitty scones made by Dina, while watching Curious George. Dina and Niko came by the shop on Saturday to drop off the chocolate scones and the egg, cheese and bacon muffins in the sweet little Halloween basket! Thank you so much you guys...they are wonderful treats! The muffins were fresh out of the oven on Saturday, and smelled divine.

Rozzilyn also made 2 little Halloween pins and a door hanger...and gosh darned it, she got out of the house without any pictures taken. I was so involved in the quilt...I forgot...Sorry, all my fault!

20 October 2006

What'd You Got?

OK, here I am not planning on writing a long entry today (yeah, right) a real quick easy in and out kind of Friday thing...Behold when I got home yesterday, I found a long package from my father...more on that later...

First off, this adorable kitty and mouse apron found at a thrift! Good heavens, one of these days I'm just going to faint, and someone is going to step over my prone body, and pull whatever it was I found out of my hands and buy it.

This sweetie thing looks to me like a linen towel sewn onto a black apron (with rick-rack...quite a rick-rack week don't you think?) The person who made this sewed the top and bottom of the towel and most of the sides, but left 2 small openings at the top so the kitty, and mousie (one the left corner) are a pocket! Perfect for my cooking utensils?


And from the world's greatest gift giver:
My father...a few words about the man first.

He loves to send fun stuff in the mail, and give in person, and always gives the most unusual gifts! I am actually quite lucky because both of my parents are natural generous people, who shop exclusively on the second hand market. What this affords them is the best and I mean, the best stuff...Wich results in a very lucky us!!

My father sent a lovely Keith Herring card and 3 Paul Frank buttons...my father and I share an almost unnatural love for anything Paul Frank, and have been known to both giggle and shout and point out things in the most loud ways at a little shop down in Seal Beach CA (and you should've seen us in the flagship store at South Coast Plaza...the t-shirts, the furniture, the accessories!) The Seal Beach store is where my father buys most of my Paul Frank goodies...yummm! And that is the greatest red crepe paper VINTAGE HALLOWEEN GOODY BAG !?! With a little devil on it?...Good God...have I mentioned that he's extremely intuitive? That was hard when I was little, because we would try to surprise him, but he usually guessed what was in packages...but it's wonderful when it comes to getting presents from the man...I was just remarking the other day to my mother that I should call him and tell him to pick up and send any vintage Halloween ephemera that he can find. It's getting harder and harder to find the old stuff...and I just drool when I look at the reproductions online. Since he lives in California-Mecca-Land...I would suppose he comes across the stuff more often than we might here.

And, out of the long square tube of a box slid this amazing black Halloween feather tree!

I love it !
I love it !
I love it !

Look at the goose feather blackness of the tree needles...and the wonderful orange wooden balls at the end of all the branches...The neat orange wood base...drool. It's OK, I can drool on it, I own it. Now what does one hang on a Halloween tree? I suppose I could mosey on downtown to the little general store and buy the sock monkey ornaments. But, most likely, I will dig out all the Harry Potter ornaments I have instead...or work on a little felt idea that I've had dancing around in my head for some time now!

Thank you dad...soooo much! It's just the pick-me-up I needed this week. I am feeling much better...as this divorce/healing process has often gone...up, down, and up again! Have a great weekend everyone!

19 October 2006


Well...here they are...my mother (the blurry woman on the left...OK, sorry, we were out at a darkish restaurant and I didn't use my flash) and her brother, my Uncle Bob and his wife, my Aunt Marc. They have been here for the past 2 days visiting. They are magnificent farmers from the fertile area of California (I know, which one?) They have raised oranges, Fuji apples...and now Pakistani mulberries (of which, I received some jam. And did you know, there are no pests with mulberries, so they don't spray them...they are organic! Expensive too, but organic!) and a couple of variety of figs, and well...you name it. We've had a fun time eating mass quantities of yummy food, last night, we stuffed ourselves at the Taj Mahal, the best Indian restaurant. They have an incredible vegan buffet on Wednesday nights (and November 6th...I think, they're having belly dancers and a special buffet...always a good time, as it's usually the local belly dancing troupe performing with fire and swords...as well as your every-day belly dancing)

My aunt and uncle were here visiting my grandmother mostly...she's 92, and the amazing woman behind the crochet flowers that I decorate a lot of my creations with, and also the woman behind keeping the family together. We don't get to see everyone much as they live in California, but both of my mother's siblings came to visit this year. My grandmother wanted to have a reunion, but not everyone could come at the same time, so we were able to enjoy them as they came separately. I was remarking to both my mom and grandmother that now that I am older, I feel like I can connect with everyone differently. It's been so much fun to just sit and talk and hear family stories, both of the past and present...all the memories that everyone has about the family. It's hard for me to remember that my mother has siblings, and that there was an entire life that was lived before I came on the scene, and I love to watch everyone interact with each other. My life seems to be unfolding and in the opening up it's like I'm looking around for the first time and hearing and seeing all new things. I am realizing too, how lucky I am to have such a wonderful and diverse family full of the neatest people with so much knowledge and experience. For instance, my uncle was able to show my mom how to prune her apple trees for the next season...and give her all sorts of suggestions about how to heal all her fruit trees, and ease her fears about some things that were going on with the pests (they've been neglected for quite a while now) The things he knows about growing fruits is both invaluable and fascinating!

Thank you all for your sweet comments yesterday as well (I'm going to print them out and hang them up for posterity) I am feeling more stable today (big sigh of relief) and seeing more and more layers fall away and heal...I am grateful for all of you, my family and my friends...

  • Dina, indeed that is the dress you were stalking...I am so happy one of us got it, so stop feeling guilty.
  • Dina, tell Superman and Lou-Lou I am extremely excited about the sleepover! But, no scary movies, like Monster House...
  • Liz...I meant to tell Dina to pass on some muffins...oops, another batch with be forthcoming...and I hope you come out with us to Traveller next weekend (silly me, I thought it was this weekend, but it's the 27th...Friday!) dancing and eating...
  • Is anyone else cold? 32 degrees tonight? Thank goodness I have a cat to sleep on my head! Brrrr...
  • Wa-Hoo Project Runway! Yay Jeffery...did anyone else cry at the end of that one? I loved his collection, it was exciting and creative, and made me want to get busy sewing! Congratulations!

17 October 2006

Monday Thrifting...

As I mentioned yesterday, I found this loverly vintage dress at a local thrift. It was in between all the Halloween goodies, and I just about fainted...really. It was heart stopping mostly because it's too cute...and it was big enough to fit. I thought at first that it was a square dancing dress, and well you know what? I didn't even care...the blue and yellow flowers? Even the rick-rack on this thing is unusual. It's blue and yellow to match the flowers (of course) and intertwined then sewn on with a zig-zag stitch...a little creative don't you think? Something I may have to try soon...since I have so much vintage rick-rack just lazing around collecting dust.

Luckily, I got it out the door before a huge emotional breakdown...where I actually had to remove myself from the store before they asked me to leave because I was crying and well...I think that just scares the customers on some level. My sadness was not due to not finding any cute fabric or other wonderful stuff at the store, but some personal stuff that seems to be ongoing since the divorce (last week was my weepy week, and it looks like this week is shaping up to be that too...I oscillate from being numb to being sad...with leaky eyes all day long) I was talking to my mother at the thrift, on the phone, and to her credit, it wasn't her fault...it's just that I keep thinking after a year and a half it should be getting easier right? Well, like anybodies stories, there is complications...and mine seems to be complicated. Sometimes I feel like I'm just hanging on by a thread here, which is why I am trying my darnedest to keep myself floating by being creative...

I have cried a river, I have cried a song, I have cried the seasons in and out, I have cried the sun up in the morning and I have cried the moon full in the night, I have cried an entire apple crop, to which I have made pies. If anyone wants to know why Arizona got more moisture this summer? I think it may have been me. I have cried until I honestly thought I couldn't cry anymore...
And then I did.
This crying may have contributed to my amazing weight loss in fact (who knew crying was just as important as diet and exercise?) There is a huge part of me that just wants to take a long vacation from myself (when the going gets tough, the tough go to the tropics!) I don't think that's going to happen. Although, seeing the humor in this breakdown at the thrift (because through all of the emotional stuff, I seem to be hanging on to my sense of humor. I mean, gheeze, if I can't be funny then what's left?) The guy at the cash register must have taken a look at my leaky eyes and blotchy red face and runny nose, because he was trying to make small talk about the dress like:

"Oh wow...A Halloween dress...what are you going to be?"
and, I'm looking at him saying;
"Oh well...um actually, I'm just going to wear this dress,
um regular..."

Poor guy...and through all the tears in the car in the parking lot...my mom gently reminded me that "...creative people always seem to create through sorrow and adversity."


The good thing though, is with such swollen eyes, my fine lines and wrinkles are almost non-existent. Ah misery...my muse.

Piles of Muffins...

This is how I ended up my day off yesterday...
With a pile of pumpkin muffins...Half were delivered to Dina and her wonderful son, who regaled me with all sorts of good movie recommendations (who knew Monster House wasn't scary? According to Niko, I just need to be brave...sigh) and silly stories, including one which explained the large sticky spot on his hair ("I have crunchy hair right here")...apparently one of his friends at school dropped a spoon full of strawberry yogurt on his head at school...which got us all to laughing and talking about sticky things...Niko told us we were "asgusting...and don't say those words any more!" although, I'm hoping he was joking and didn't mean it, because it would wipe out quite a bit of my vocabulary, and to tell the truth, I can't exactly remember what it was I was saying. He was also saying "ewwww" in the cutest way. It was a lovely visit and an extremely enjoyable way to end my day...it was super fun to finally sit and talk to Niko (Dina too, of course) because really, up until last night, he's been a little shy around me...although, I must admit, I haven't been around a lot so it's hardly his fault! I also got to meet Lou-Lou the wonder dog...WOW...she's something else.

I took a 3 mile walk at Peavine yesterday as well, and then took myself out to lunch and a good book at WildFlower...they have the BEST Caesar salad there! Thrift shopping (I scored an amazing vintage dress...more later on that) and found what may be the replacements to all the glasses I keep breaking at Cost Plus...AND, I did get my free Pumpkin Pie Passion lotion at the Bath place...so now, I will smell like a walking baked good...Speaking of which (walking that is) how long do you think it would take me to justify buying these boots?

15 October 2006

Sunday October 15th...


  • Well...um...the 3 of us that normally attend.

Projects completed...

  • Not much my friends.

Hmmm...have you ever had one of those weeks?

No really, was it odd for everyone else out in blogland? It was a little strange here...Let's just say, after a week of headaches mixed with nausea for my mother, and myself not getting much if any sleep...it was long and exhausting both. So, when confronted with Creative Sunday this week, my mother dropped Rozzie off with me so we could run and get some tree ghost material...while she caught up stocking her booths in the antique shops. And then we sat back and ate...after quite a long walk in the neighborhood...while watching What Not To Wear (which, they'd never seen before) and just chatted!

Although, I did decide that I would fix yet another mistake in my living room...When I made these lovely floral curtains years ago, I was wanting them to be long and puddly...guess what? I apparently measured wrong! Because all of the curtains are just a bit short for the puddle effect.

With the advent of the lovely new wall makeover...The curtains were feeling a little sad, and left out, and well...I certainly can't live with sad curtains...

After my mother and Rozzie left today...my mother finishing up the other sock to make a whole set...way to go mom! (although now she's a little nervous and not wanting to make life sized human socks...only baby socks...in which case I'd better get busy...heeheehee) I got on the curtain train...

Now I realize by looking at these pictures, the curtains look all different colors (damned cheap camera) they actually look like a combination of the first and last picture...but, I think you may get the jest...

I bought the brown brocade fabric for a bag liner only, but realized that I may just be able to solve a curtain dilemma with it. Originally salvaged from a pair of curtains (I only bought one...so I don't have quite enough material to do both the small side windows and the large picture window...drat!) I cut and hemmed and sewed...and look...I puddle! (and in the living room no less!) In some small stroke of luck, the brown material matches the new wall color close to perfect. I do actually have some little brown pieces left over, so I may just sew them together and attach them onto the picture window curtain after all, since most of the curtain falls behind the blanket chest when closed. Do you think anyone will notice? Probably not, since most people didn't notice that there was no puddling!

And also...

Yes, I've been sitting here drooling and stomach growling as the smell of freshly cooking banana bread wafts through the house. My mother had a bunch of sad and nasty bananas that literally sat up and begged me to make them into bread. I used the recipe in the Joy of Cooking for Quick Banana Bread (although, it bakes for an hour...drool...and I'm wondering what's quick about that?!) I whipped up these no wheat/dairy/refined sugar loaves...I just redid the recipe and fit it to my allergy specifications...so there are no problems! I am also making a little list for pumpkin muffin recipients as well...and Dina and Liz (whom I went out with this weekend, and had a lovely time) are at the top...so get ready girls! Until then, I am just sitting waiting for these loaves to cool (again...quick?!) so I can snuggle in between the clean flannel sheets of the bed (I actually did do laundry today thank you!) with a good book, and a slice of heaven! (that's the bread...I don't have a new boyfriend)

13 October 2006

Living Room Redux...

This is the big secret project I've been working on all week...one wall at a time! And the fact that I can keep a secret of this magnitude is something!

I painted the walls of this space right when I moved in...about 4-5 years ago. I painted them green. I don't like green. Not at all. Then later, I was helping My Pal Amy choose colors for her first home...I found a lovely green in Restoration Hardware.

The green was both lovely in the store and Amy's, but apparently...I don't like green in my living room. I painted about a quarter of the living room Amy's green...and hated it. So, it's been sitting 2-tones of green both of which I do not like, for quite some time now (really...a couple of years at least)

So, I'd had it...not one more winter of being stuck in my house looking at this giant mistake...I've been thinking about painting the new color scheme for quite some time now...and I finally had both the energy and the boldness to get the job done...one. wall. at. a. time. Moving the furniture as I go. I took some of these pictures after I'd moved the wall with the mantle on it...I'm not quite that messy!

Drum roll please...


Tada...my front door area...with the door in the middle there...where I take most of my pictures of myself in skirts...a lovely creamy color, which goes nice with the white trim. I decided I wanted to do something that matched the white trim, because the thought of carefully edging all the windows and doors and all their frames, made me a little crazy.

The door opposite the front door, and what one usually sees when you walk in to my home for the first time. The start of the only wall in the house that is a deep yummy chocolate brown!

Besides my bedroom in the background through said door, are those adorable mirrors, and a lovely Victorian doll house, a gift from my parents many years ago (I used to play with it quite often as I recall)

This is looking towards the right of that door...at the opposite end of the room...Where my extra chair and entertainment armoire are housed. You can see my guilty little secret if you look hard enough over the armoire though. I couldn't move that thing to save my life...so, I need to climb up on top of it soon and finish that one little corner up there!

This is the wall that goes in the middle of both of those last pictures...with the kitchen in the background...and all the mantle...and my newly moved Wagner opera plates that hang next to my oil color that my grandmother gave me, of what I like to think is Italy! This is across from the giant picture window...

This is the area opposite of the window and armoire above...directly next to the mantle...and house the sort of entry way...front door to the left, bedroom and mantle to the right.

My expansive picture widow...with the iron wheel decor (what I like to think of as the Zeena boob covers) now above the window, as they melted colorwise into the space above the mantle...too dark for them now up there! And, my 6 board ginormous blanket chest...aka the big blue thing in front of the window. Yes, that is made from large, now extinct trees...each board makes one side...huge, my feet don't touch the floor if I sit on it in fact.

And finally...that 2 tone corner...with 2 tones that I can actually live with. I love the way this turned out very much! I think it is sophisticated and clean. The colors go very well with what I have already, and the chocolate wall is long and tall now, and makes the whole room look larger. I always joke that every room in this house is long the wrong way...all rectangular...but this enhances it somehow. Kind of makes me want to put up crown moulding too...but that's another project for another time!

PS...Yes, some dolt put an electrical outlet in the middle of the wall...that is my original deco looking heater controller...and those are in fact, in the upper left corner, red tassels that hang from my ceiling fan!

Have an amazing weekend!
(I'm going out with Dina if she feels better on Sat.)

12 October 2006

Corners of my home

How I love Halloween...Samhain...The Pagan New Year...And since "building" my own little mantle, the one feature this house actually doesn't have that I've always wanted...it is so much fun to decorate it for whatever season we may be enjoying. Now, I can just glance at the mantle and remember exactly where abouts in the year I am. Although, the heat coming on all on it's own this morning was a good tip off...it's 42 degrees here right now folks! I really enjoy my Halloween decorations because they are reminiscent of all the vintage ones my mother collected when I was younger. I don't think I have any vintage Halloween decorations, although my wonderful father does send postcards this time of year...and he loaded me up with all sorts of yummy vintage Easter decorations, but I'm thinking that Halloween may be a little rarer? (either that, or he keeps it all for himself...wink, wink) Anywho...there are companies that are now reproducing these types of things...so I feel quite lucky. I have 6 tiny glittery candy containers that I got at ZGallery (after coveting them forever, but not prepared to pay the prices for all, and not being able to narrow my choice down to only the ones I could afford...and I walked in during the middle of the summer, and lo and behold, they cleaned out their storage and found these and made them all half off...so I bought them all...yippee!) And the short pumpkin nodder I found at Target, during one of their Halloween vintage inspired seasons...the little orange wooden thing with a pumpkin face is a handle to a vintage jump rope...OK, I have one vintage Halloween thing...And finally, the tall dapper guy in the back. I've always wanted one of her paper mache people...and I found him in town 75% off...swoon! Actually, I've always wanted to make one of these paper mache beauties, don't worry, it's on my list!

I love this time of year, for all the obvious fall seasonal color things, and I purposely step into all the gutters around town so I can crunch in the big piles of leaves...not as dangerous as one would think considering this is still a bit of a small town. I love the fall because I know winter is coming and I could use the rest! I love the fall because I know it's not going to be as hot...and yes, I am actually considering moving somewhere where the weather is much colder year around, and there may be the actuality of getting snowed in during the winter. Spoken like a true romatic don't you think?

10 October 2006

Christmas fabric delima...

Is it too early to think about Christmas?
Well, I'm having a little problem. I thought I found the perfect material for the back of the tree skirt I wanted to make...And I can't find it anymore. Did they put it on sale and then sell out? Perhaps. Rats.
we all remember what the front fabric looks like don't we?
I bought this at a thrift here in town ($1)
it is in fact, vintage...a backing of a really old thrashed crazy quilt (I carefully removed it, and then proceeded to save the other part of the quilt too, thinking that I could do something with that as well...sigh. Can I not bear to throw anything away?) So, I think I've narrowed it down to these fine fabrics (ha! I'm now thinking of buying at least 2 of them and doing a sort of pieced thing on the back...because I am absolutely convinced that I will not find actual vintage fabric for this piece, and I need to get started on this project so I can finish it before the holiday season!)

these sweet girls
wonderful for a background
treetop kitties (which matches absolutely nothing!)
these reindeer
this holly
something perfect for my mother
or really...anything from Michael Miller (check out the retro rocket rascals)

Give me your votes please...I am really leaning towards all of them (rolling my eyes). Including, of course the kitties, which don't go with anything, but are soooo cute I can hardly stand it! And what if I go totally modern some day? (I mean, a girl can change her mind can't she?) And I do, in fact, have a pink aluminum Christmas tree that I could switch off from year to year...


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