Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Since you've asked

I've had a few comments (can't believe I actually get comments :) about the flag that hangs above my fireplace in my den in progress.  Several people have asked where I got it or how I made it.  I got it at an antique mall several years ago; just saw it sitting alone in a vendor's booth.  So, I didn't make it but I know many of you skilled, crafty people certainly could.  So, here it is with some close up shots which are supposed to show you how one did this but really just show you how bad my photography skills still are.  Will they ever get better?  I'm beginning to think I have a little learning disability in photography.    
Here's the picture where some of you noticed the flag. 
Close up: Someone took an old window frame with glass and carefully folded the flag to fit just right in the frame.  It looks to me like it's a pretty old flag (some mild staining, wear).  I'm sure you could take a new one and mildly distress it without breaking any patriotic flag rules.  Yes folks, there is a detailed flag code.
Original latches and hardware are still attached.

Some closeups so you can see how it's folded.

Closeup shows the layers of paint or it at least it would if I could focus a camera.  Trust me, several layers of paint are on it. 

And an added bonus: here's mini me.  This little flag hangs in the same room.  It's tiny, about 2"x4" in a 3x5 frame.
I just love that little thang.
Although I'm not Canadian, my father's father was as was all of his family. My father was the first generation born in the US.   I would like to add a Canadian flag, small or large, framed similarly, to my little collection. If anyone comes across a worn out Canadian flag they want to throw out, let me know!

And there you have it.  Question answered. 

Monday, March 29, 2010

How Do These Blog Awards Work?

As I mentioned here, Grace at Sense and Simplicity, listed my blog as one of her favorites when she won the Sunshine Award.  So, as I understand it, 'cause I'm still so new to this blogging thing, I need to pass that along to 12 of my favorite or inspiring blogs.  If you've seen my blog list, I like to keep up with a lot of blogs so this is going to be a challenge.  The first two blogs I've chosen are easy and I've chosen them for completely different reason.  The third choice is also pretty easy.  So, I will list those first and the remaining 9 (is that right? 12-3=9, yep that's right) in no particular order.

First up, Macchio Family.  The Macchio's (pronounced "mackieyo", not "mochieo" like Ralph Macchio if you over 35) are my neighbors.  If you knew them, you would be so jealous that I got them as neighbors.  They are the perfect neighbors!  Momma Kim is the most resourceful, crafty, creatively talented person and one of the nicest human beings I've ever met. She's married to Officer Danny and they have two wonderful kiddos.   I'm tellin' ya, we won the "neighbor jackpot" with this family.  Please check out Kim's blogs.  She has wonderful ideas on decorating, crafts, projects, recipes, parenting, and so much more!

Second and "twicemost" (new word I just learned) is Tidbits from the Tremaynes.  One of the most important qualities I enjoy in people is a sense of humor.  Mandi at Tidbits from the Tremaynes just flat cracks me up.  Oh, she has great decorating ideas too but I love her sense of humor. Her blog is one of the first I check each day just for a giggle.  You just have to see the picture of her son sleeping on the stairs.

Third, is Cottage Instincts.  I love this blog. It's pretty and calming visually and it was the first blog where I discovered some of those linky parties. This was one of the first blogs I decided to follow.  Cindy at Cottage Instincts always leaves such great comments on some of my posts.  She has great ideas so rush to visit her blog.

Okay, here are 4-12 in no particular order. I just numbered them so I'll know to stop at 12 or else I would just list all the blogs.   I like 'em all!

4. The Red Shed (you have to visit their website too, accessible from their blog, to see all of their great stuff.  Click on their current inventory photos.

5. A Beach Cottage I just want to be her and have all of her stuff and take pictures like her.

6. Whisperwood Cottage  I want all of her stuff too. I would be happy just to take her leftover scraps. If she ever gets rid of the barn closet door, I pray she chunks it my way.  Coolest thing I've seen.

7. Canadian Cottage just simply beautiful

8.  Home and Harmony I want all of her stuff too!

9. The Virginia House She's got great ideas and a linky party.

10.  Small Burst I love her posts and she leaves sweet comments when she reads my posts.

11. Decorating Addiction This is a new one for me and I'm still checking out all her posts.  She's funny too!

12. The 1829 Farmhouse She has a relatively new blog and I've enjoyed watching the kitchen redo.

Honorable mention:  Elite Mammoth.  This is my 13 yr old son's blog with all of his music.  Interesting to say the least.  I'm so proud (and maybe a little worried).

Ok, so go check out all these blogs, leave happy comments and let them know they've won the Sunshine Award too. If you don't tell them, many of them may never know because my blog is fairly new and they've probably never heard of it.  I'm still shocked almost 70 of you follow it.


Sunday, March 28, 2010

leftovers (decoratively speaking)

I had to plan centerpieces for large party with a western spring theme.  This is what I came up with which looks cool for the party but not for my house. I had a lot of those flowers left over as well as some paint I used to paint the horseshoes.   
Other leftovers hanging around my house include creamy white spraypaint, a cheap, flimsy wooden letter "G" I didn't know what to do with and a brown metal tub in the garage that I didn't like it anymore.
I have this leftover spraypaint in chrome and aluminum.
So, with all those leftovers, I cooked up a couple of new things.
Now I have this awesome "chrome" G.
and I've got a new creamy white tub...with a bunch of flowers in it.
I may add a little somethin' to it like a letter, name or word but for now I like the simple look of it.
I think I'm gonna link this to some great link parties listed at the top of my blog. Go check 'em out!

a few notes about this past week

In my professional life, I am a pediatric speech-language pathologist and every year we have our state's annual professional convention.  I am really involved in my state's professional association so convention time is a really busy time for me. The convention took place over this last week so I haven't been able to post anything or even worse, read all the blogs I love to follow or check out new ones.  One of the first things on my "to do" list this week is to take some time, kick back with my tall glass of sweet iced tea and catch up on blogs.

I did take a moment yesterday evening to get on my blog just to make sure it was still alive and kicking.  I glanced over my blogroll and saw that one of them I really like had a new post so I clicked on it to quickly check it out.  What a surprise for me!  Grace at Sense and Simplicity received a blog award and had to pass it on to 12 of her favorite blogs.  I scrolled down her list to see the blogs so I could I check them out if any were new to me.  Well, one was shockingly familiar...mine!  Thanks Grace!!!  Grace is a fellow Speech-Language Pathologist and an amazing photographer.  Check her blog out to see beautiful and inspiring photographs, delicious recipes and of course, great decor tips. 

So, does that mean I have to pick 12 of my favorite blogs to feature because that will be hard to do.  I'll have to give that a lot of thought. I know two blog I would spotlight for sure but the other 10 will be difficult because I like so many!  I'll be back later to highlight 12 of my favorite blogs.

Thanks again Grace!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

front porch update...welcome spring?

There's a saying down here in Texas: 
if you don't like the weather, wait a minute and it'll change. 

Remember this?
and this?
and this from exactly one week ago?

Now, we have this!

Yep!  Thatabe SNOW!
(translation for those who don't speak Texas: That would be SNOW!)

The first day of Spring yesterday and we get snow in Texas. So now we are back to this:

Hopefully, later in the week, we'll be back to this, she said with fingers crossed:

and this:
For now, the new plants are all safe in the garage.

Friday, March 19, 2010

cute idea for the kids' playroom or an office

Here's a departure from my usual type posts.  Here's a cute and cheap idea you can use to decorate an office or playroom.  Oversized decor items are really popular and really expensive.  Here's an idea to make your own.  These "pencils" are made out of tall fence pickets.  They are about 6 feet high.  Some home improvement stores will give their imperfect ones away to you for free or for pennies as long as you promise they won't be used for your fence (I guess it's about lawsuits or something).  Simply saw one end off to a point and paint!  You or the kids can paint or stencil words or sayings on them too!  We used these to decorate the elementary school where I work.  We chose blue paint for the body, of course black for the lead, gold for the band by the eraser and pink for the eraser.  You could have several in different colors hung horizontally or vertically on a wall in a playroom or in a child's room.  You could paint them black and if you are really creative, make them look like black ball point pens for an office.  Too big?  Cut them in half, line them up next to each other and paint them like crayons or colored pencils. A smaller version maybe using a smaller piece of wood or a wooden ruler would make a great nameplate for your child's bedroom or playroom door.  You could even paint the body with chalkboard paint so you could change the message!  How cool! 

Paint it free hand so it's not perfect.  That makes it look like it's just been sharpened.
Here's the eraser end.
Bonus!  You can use popsicle sticks to do the same thing on a much smaller scale.  You can actually cut the tip into a point with sharp scissors.  Use these to label baskets, drawers, etc.  We used them at my elementary school to label teachers' mailboxes. 

Sunday, March 14, 2010

front porch makeover for spring

It's the weekend before Spring Break and we have beautiful weather here in Cowtown (that's Fort Worth, Tx's nickname).  It was blue skies, sunny and 70!  Perfect day to make over the front porch.  I spent less than 20 buckaroos to redo it.  I bought new flowers and some dirt for my pots.  That's it.  Everything else was already there, came from other parts of the house or were odds and ends I've picked up along the way. I have a lot of pictures but maybe that means there will be a lot of ideas...or maybe I just have too much stuff on my porch.  Oh well, it's how I like it.  So, let's take a look at the sad before and then the pretty after.

and now, the After...
I painted this pot with cream paint, then crackle medium and then wiped watery brown paint on and wiped off.  I added the red band at the top (also craft paint).  This was a few years ago and they've aged well.
the little red tables are vintage metal pop-up tables used for camping or tv trays; I got both for $20. last year
picked the metal G up years ago at Pottery Barn; previously hung in my son's room.
I painted these cheapo terracotta pots with craft paint a few years ago and then let them age naturally outside.
I like to use river rock around the plants to help keep the soil from drying out so fast
by the way, notice the nickel hardware and kickplate on the door?  It's ugly brass spraypainted with nickel paint.  We did it two years ago and it still looks great (or at least better than it did)
Got it on clearance a few months ago.  If it gets yucky, I'll hang it on the wall inside and
call it architectural salvage!

sorry for the blurry skills have improved but have a long way to go

my favorite picture...that little rusted welcome sign in the ivy!  I can't believe I took that.
(Kim M., you're rubbing off on me)
little red rooster pillows in the old chippy rocking chairs.

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