Wednesday, October 31, 2007

~Happy Halloween~


Hope your day is filled with treats!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Sewing Challenge

With my final and project behind me ~Whoo Hoo!!~ I am ready to spend some quality time with my sewing projects:) Julia and I have committed ourselves to a sewing challenge. She has been putting off finishing her valances, and I have been meaning to make some drapes and pillows to go with my salvaged couch. So I have gathered up the essentials for the job: fabric, fluffy down pillow inserts, some precious old hand embroidery patterns, vintage buttons, and an inspirational photo.

We are challenging each other to finally get it in gear and get it DONE. SO.......Let the fun begin:) 5:00 AM tomorrow morning, it's just me and my machine....LOL!

Sorry, I haven't been around the last couple of days, after my lovely Girls Night In, it was back to the grind stone to finish up for my class. One down, 3 to go!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Girl's Night In

After the week I've had, I am ready for some down time. So I have it all planned out. This afternoon my son and I are going to my Mom's for dinner and a bonfire with the Family:) I'll wash up my little man before we leave and with any luck he will fall asleep on the ride home. My DH will be gone to a band Marching Festival and will not return until after midnight so...... I will have the comfy couch and the television all to myself.


Here's the plan: take one pair of warm flannel pajamas, add one quilted throw, some nummy sweet treats












Sip on something purely decadent......








Pop in one of my all time favorite movies~

and Oooooo, life is good!!!!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Up To My Neck In It

Well this has been a very busy week. I have been house sitting since Monday night. It is not really work, the gorgeous house sits by the lake and is surrounded by beautiful gardens. Each evening when I arrive I am greeted by several deer who are wandering around the grounds nibbling on plants, which is not so fun for the home owner, but is lovely to watch. The only down side is I don't have my early mornings at home, this is my time to blog, enjoy a good cup of coffee and greet the day before everyone wakes-up and I have to become wife and Mom.

I am also studying for my final in my Monday night class. We take the test on the 29th. I am taking a class to get my Gifted Education Endorsement, so when I return to teaching next fall, I will hopefully be able to teach classed for gifted students. On top of the final I have to prepare a case study which is due two Monday's from now but I am trying to get it done this week because......My sister-in-law is expecting her first child any day now:) I want to be able to pack-up and hit the road~to Central Florida~ at a moments notice without having to worry that my report is not done.

So I haven't been around very much lately, and I really miss visiting with everyone. Hopefully, things will be back to "normal" what ever that is, by next Tuesday.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Pumpkins & Haybales


Every October the hill in front of the Methodist church erupts into a gigantic pumpkin patch. It happens suddenly, no one has witnessed the exact occurrence. You drive by on your way to town and as you return home, voila.... personally I believe it is the work of the "Great Pumpkin" Charlie Brown. There are all sorts of shapes and sizes.

The church sells them to the community to finance special projects, this year the proceeds are going to help with the Youth Mission Trip. As usual, I pick out several beauties to use in my Fall Hay Bale display.


Thanks to everyone who wished me well yesterday. I am feeling much better today, the drops have all but eliminated the itching. By tomorrow, I will no longer be contagious and can go back to cuddling up with my favorite little snuggle bug:)

Monday, October 22, 2007

Quick Cuppa

Just a quick cuppa and "Hello", then I am off the the doctor's for some eye drops. I woke-up this morning suffering from pinkeye:( YUCK, YUCK and double YUCK!!!

I have had this dreaded affliction once before and it is enough to drive one to distraction! Not only do I have to be concerned with me, I also have to figure out how not to spread it to the rest of my family since this wicked stuff is terribly contagious.

OK, I'll stop whining. I will come round and visit everyone later this evening. Hope you all had a great Sunday!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Watercolor Fall

I am finally getting into the spirit of fall. I arranged this fall vignette on top of the entertainment center. How do you like the special effects? I was playing around with photoshop....this is called watercolor.


Yesterday, I went out looking for some silverplate treasures after being inspired by Mary and Becky's post of this week. But I really didn't find anything that spoke to me until I came across this gorgeous carved desk organizer. The pictures does not do justice to the beautifully intricate work. So even though no silverplate. I did not feel disappointed:)

Today, I am going to set-up my hay bales and pumpkins/gourds out in front of the house. I'll post pictures on Monday.

This brings me to a point I want to discuss. I have read several posts lately that talk about the all consuming life that blogging can take on. I can not adequately describe the joy and sense of friendship that I receive each day from blogging. In such a short time I have made connections with such wonderful people. As the words flow from our hearts we inspire and support one another. I have laughed and cried, discussed and fussed. In "Real Life" sharing thoughts and feelings is not easy for me. In group conversations I am often times the quiet one, so blogging offers me an outlet, a chance to reflect and comment. Why it is easier for me to speak up here, I don't know, the answer to that my lie in hours of psychotherapy that I can no way afford, nor would I want to. But the point I want to make is that yes, I concede....blogging can be quite a time hog.

As I was re-reading my post from yesterday, I was struck by the small amount of time I am spending with my loved ones. Time is eaten up with the daily chores and must do's. There is very little left to play. So my answer to this is to take Sundays off. To spend this day just as God instructed, not working but resting and enjoying the fellowship of the ones he so generously blessed me with. I hope you enjoy your Sunday as much I am intend to enjoy mine. See you again on Monday:)

Friday, October 19, 2007

Sweet Dreams

Last night I had the nicest dream. My family and I were enjoying a game of Checkers. We were sitting around the checkerboard, laughing, talking....just enjoying being together. There was no thought of television, computers, cell phones, chores to do, places to go. In that moment it was just us, the three most important people in the world.




As a child my family and I would often play games together, usually during the winter when it was pitch dark by 6:00 and we could not be outside playing. Our favorite was Monopoly:) My Mama always won this game with out fail!


I usually excelled at Rummy. I remember the first time I beat everyone....did I jump up and down and shout "Yeah! In your face!" Nope, I cried. I felt so bad for causing my loved ones to loose....LOL! I know, it's pathetic, I'm such a softie.

When we got to be older, my Daddy taught us to play poker. That's right poker on Saturday night, Church on Sunday morning....sssshhhh! Don't tell Pastor Norman:) We never used money though, we played for matchsticks.


What I remember most about our family game nights was the sense of togetherness. I know we did not have the multitude of options that are available today, and if we had, maybe we would not have spent so many evenings playing together. I would consider that a huge loss. So, I've been inspired....to create a family game night at my house, with nothing more that some game pieces, a deck of cards and three smiling faces....oh, and maybe a bowl of popcorn:)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Basking In the Glow

What a way to end a lovely birthday. Sitting memorized by the light of the fire on a crisp autumn evening.....sounds just like a page from a fairy tale.

My special night started with a delicious dinner at the Texas Roadhouse Grill. If you go, I highly recommend the sirloin kabobs:) Then there was the rousing birthday song served up by the wait staff~ "It's your birthday, HOT DOG" ~ Well that just says it all now doesn't it.

When we got home, I was in for a real treat....my son went running out and jumped in his power wheels jeep, he drives over to the deck pulling his little red wagon loaded up with a box of fire starter logs....HUH? we don't have a fire place. I am instructed to follow him, where I am lead to my new FIRE PIT!!!! I have wanted one of this since, well, FOREVER!

OH , but I am a happy girl:) So I ended my day curled up in my old Adirondack, basking in the glow of the beginning of a new year.

Thank you Honey, I LOVE IT!!


Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Another Year Older....


Today is my birthday! I turn 41 years old. Yesterday I spent the day with my Mom and Dad. My Mom always makes me my favorite cake; gingerbread with warm applesauce. It is such a lovely treat. I ate so much of it that I went to bed with a tummy ache, just like a proper birthday girl should:)

I know that most people look at New Years as the time for introspection, but for me this happens each year around my birthday. I begin to evaluate and take stock. As I first started to get older and approach "middle age" (YIKES!! Did I just say that!), I would lament the passage of time. I took the attitude of Dorthy, locked in the Wicked Witch's tower, watching the hourglass sand run out. As I searched the crystal ball for assistance, I would declare, "I'm frightened Auntie Em, I'm frightened!" But I have come to realize that you really can't place much stock in a round smoke filled piece of glass, no matter how lovely it is.
Birthdays are an occasion to celebrate who we are, not what the passage of time has done to us, but rather the journey itself. To look and declare not fear but strength and assurance, to know that each day is an opportunity for growth and experimentation. That through each reflective thought comes valuable knowledge.
For me it marks a time for both self acceptance and challenge...this is who I am now, what do I want to be tomorrow? I am a huge proponent of personal growth. There can be nothing more depressing to me than stagnation, the same old same old.
So, I make my lists. The first list is: Things I have accomplished along the way, things I am so grateful for..... From this list I draw assurance and a sense of thankfulness.
The second list consists of the tasks I still want to accomplish, the direction I want to travel in..... From this list I gain resolve, hope and a sense of excitement.
OK, OK, I know this is probably way to deep for your morning cuppa. You just wanted to pop in and say "Hello" not start the long process of self-examination:)
But I feel it is so important to take the time to look around at who we are, to give ourselves credit for the persons we have become and to admit, if only to ourselves, that there is more that we could do, more that we want to do. Layers of ourselves that we still want to explore and develop.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep. But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep.
Robert Frost

Monday, October 15, 2007

Smiles all Around


Oh my goodness!! Yesterday I took little break from blogging to enjoy being out in the beautiful sunshine and playing with my hubby and son....pure bliss!
So this morning when I open up my site, I was completely blown away by the fact that I had been given the You Make Me Smile award by FOUR of my dear new friends here in bloggityville. Michelle @ Vintage Pastiche', Angie @ Scrappy Moments, Linda @ Somewhere In Time and Melissa @ The Inspired Room.
I will spare you the "you like me, you really like me" speech. Only Sally Field can pull that one off. But I am so touched to know that others enjoy "being in my company" as much as I enjoy being in theirs.
Now it is my turn to pass on the honor.
1 & 2) Kari & Kijsa @ Ask Kari & Kijsa for all of their creative ideas and Diet Coke obsession:)
3) Polly @ Counting Your Blessings. Polly is the reason I found blogging in the first place, and I love to stop over everyday and read her words of inspiration.
4) Meggie @ Meggie's Stuff, she is a precious red hatter and I love her new banner of petunias and butterflies.
5) Priscilla @ Flea Market Queen, her goodies always bring a smile to my face.
6) Mary @ The Little Red House, such a lovely person and her photos are always so beautiful one can't help but ....smile.
7) Dena @ Swaddle Cottage, the Halloween music she has playing makes me giggle.
8) Brenda @ Country Romance, she is very family oriented, just like me.
9) Ann @ Georgian Dream, Ann is my new friend who lives in a beautiful home, Cannondale, near the Amish in Pennsylvania.
10) Alison @ The Brocante Home, I have only lately found Alison's site and I am so grateful that I did. Finding another kindred spirit in the world always makes me smile.
I hope today someone makes you feel as special as Michelle, Angie, Linda, and Melissa made me feel today. Thank you ladies, you have really touched my heart.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

The Art & Science of Keeping House

Yesterday I tried out my new Meyer's cleaners. Although the scent, Geraniumm is divine, I found myself going back to my old reliables. The cleaners that really work. I will still use the Meyer's for things like wiping the table before I put the tablecloth on, and cleaning up the counters for the night because, like I said the scent is so nice and it does a good job as a wipe away cleaner. But for things like soap residue and cleaning the potty after a little boy who is still perfecting his aim, well....those jobs call for some serious muscle!!!


One of the Meyer's products that I do recommend whole heartedly is the scented soy candle I bought at the same time I purchased the cleaners. I have placed this little jewel on the table beside my bed and even though I have not lit it yet, it has filled my entire bedroom with the lovely faint scent of roses. I know it calls itself Geranium, but I checked the label and it contains rose oil which is the predominate fragrance.


It is a lovely aroma to wake up to in the morning:)



This morning I visited Allison at The Brocante Home Chronicles. I love to go to her site and view the charming pictures and read about her life as a single mom and vintage housekeeper, she has such a way with words. As I was browsing I read her Manifesto, in it is a quote from Mrs. Beeton that got me thinking:


...so it is with the mistress of a house. Her spirit will be seen through the whole establishment; and just in proportion as she performs her duties intelligently and thoroughly, so will her domestics follow in her path. Of all those aquirements, which more particuarly belong to the feminine charcter, there are none which take a higher rank, in our estimation, than such as enter into a knowledge of household duties; for on these are perpetually dependant the happiness, comfort and well-being of a family....


What does my home say about my spirit....do the pile and stacks say that I am disorganized and flighty, does to sink of dishes mean that I am messy, does the dusty furniture speak of neglect or does it simply mean that I too often find something better or more interesting to do. Hmmm I wonder.


When I close my eyes and picture my home in a perfect state I see order and cleanliness. Everything in its proper place, dinning table covered with vintage linens and adorned with flowers, beds dressed with fresh coverings, clothes in closets and wardrobes, windows sparkling with sun light, surfaces decorated with just the right amount of accessories not too cluttered, beautiful wooden floors that glow with the character of 70+ years of age. In this setting my family and I truly feel at home.


A couple of years ago I found a wonderful book by Cheryl Mendelson that speaks to the vision of my perfect home. It is entitled Home Comforts; The Art & Science of Keeping House . Not only is it filled to the brim with useful cleaning tips. As she writes of her passion for housekeeping Cheryl weaves inspiration and storytelling throughout the pages. She writes:


When you keep house, you use your head, your heart, and your hands together to create a home....because keeping house is a labor of love....





Friday, October 12, 2007

Clean Day

Yeap, you guessed it. I've put it off as long as I can....time to tie one on (an apron that is) and get this party started.

Today is "Clean Day" it says so right on the bottle of Mrs. Meyer's "cruelty-free" and "biodegradable" cleaner I bought yesterday. This line is the Aromatherapeutic Household Cleaners. What an excellent idea, I can have my spa treatment and a clean house:) Very economical ...it's a two birds with one stone type deal. I chose the Geranium scent....Oooo it is good. If I have to clean, I may as well enjoy my efforts.
Between Mrs. Meyer's and Murphy's my house should be looking good and smelling fine in no time;) At the top of the Meyer's label it says, "Uncomplicated products for a clean and happy home." I like the sound of that.

What types of cleaners do you like to use?





Thursday, October 11, 2007

Decisions, Decisions

On Tuesday, I was left to my own devises, so I had a choice to make; clean house or go thrifting....clean house....go thrifting....clean house....hmmmmm.....

I mean really, what choice was there. Do you want to see what I got?
This is a mixed bag because right beside the new Goodwill was an Antique/Flea shop, which I had to visit since I was there....but really honey I didn't pay more than $8 for anything.


A decorative bird cage which is now perched upon my antique wardrobe.














I love the little bird on top. An escapee perhaps.






Look Mary, my first Transferware. I'm afraid you have rubbed off on me, lol.

















I can't decide which I like best.








I simply fell in love with this old rooster! Doesn't he look chipper standing up there?




And a Cock-A-Doodle-Do to you sir.






This silver rose vase full of silk roses certainly accents the gold of my old jewelry
box, don't you think?





There you have it my latest treasures and treats.

Next time I'll stay home and clean;)

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

The Results are In

The doctor just phoned to tell me that the results of the Sweat Test are NORMAL!!!!!!!!!

My son has been given a clean bill of health!!!!!!!!

I have been overcome by a strange fit of simultaneous giggling and crying:) It is good that not a soul can see me, I probably appear quite mad, LOL.

Since my little one is spending the day with Grandma and Hubby is at work there is no one I can hug or kiss or jump up and down with......
So I am spreading my joy and thanksgiving far and wide to all who visit me.
Won't you join me in this celebratory jig?

Monday, October 8, 2007

Out of the Mouths of Babes

Yesterday morning I had this conversation with my son about the doctor's visits scheduled for this morning:

Mom: "Tommorrow, we will get up early and go down to the doctors to do your Sweat Test."


Son: "Is the Sweat Test going to hurt?"

Mom: "No, it won't. The nurse said that they do not use any needles for the test. After we finish there we will go and have another X-ray. We are praying that it will show that your lungs are clear."

Son: "You don't need to pray for that."

Mom: "Why not?"

Son: "Because it is OK. I don't feel anything anymore."

Tears welled up in my eyes. Could it be that he had felt the hand of God and he already knew that he was healed?

The X-ray today confirmed that his lungs are indeed clear. We do not have the results of the Sweat Test yet, but the doctor told me that he does not feel that he has CF.


We are rejoicing and dancing the jig here.

To all who lifted up my son with your prayers, I will never be able to find the words to express my most sincere gratitude. Thank you , thank you so much!

Rhonda

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Turning & Burning

Yesterday we attended the annual
"Turning & Burning " Festival.















It is hosted by a local pottery company and is so named for "turning" pottery and then "burning" or firing it in the brick kiln. In previous years they have allowed the kids that attend to make a piece of pottery of their own. Unfortunately, with an expected attendance of approximately 50,000, they are no longer able to offer this attraction. We were a little bummed, but there were so many other things to see and do, it was still an incredible experience.
The festival is held way back off the road so you parked in a cow pasture (watch your step) and then you caught the "shuttle" to the event. These consisted of either a












mule drawn or a tractor pulled wagon.
There were lots of exhibits that featured "the old ways" of doing things:
Butter making; she offered samples of the butter on crackers. It was excellent.
Silk Scarf Dyeing: he used black walnut shells to achieve a lovely tan to brown shade and mistletoe to make the scarves a pale green. I chose the green:)




Quilt Piecing; yes she is working on an old treadle machine.

Quilting Bee; watching these ladies reminded me of the group that used to meet at my Grandmother's house to quilt and visit.

Spinning; She is removing the fur that this angora rabbit is shedding and spinning it into yarn
At the grist mill, they were grinding corn into meal. They then packaged it into brown paper bags and gave it to all who wanted it. They included the recipe to make cornbread. I will give it a try and let you know how it tastes.

There were lots of people in "period dress" as is this lovely lady in civil war attire.



This man is "caneing" a chair. He makes the canes himself by cutting the wood, soaking it and cutting it into strips. Quite a handy fellow.

I was a bit afraid that my son might not be interested in the exhibits. They were not the normal festival fair of hayrides and cotton candy. But not to worry, he was completely enthralled.
Holding a Civil War pistol...this kind gentleman gave him a musket ball. He carried it in his pocket all day and showed it to everyone who would stop to listen.
The Spindle maker let him help carve a spindle



He was mesmerized by the blacksmith.... and literally giggled during the horse ride









But by far the thing he enjoyed the most were the old engines. The louder they were and the more they smoked, the better he liked them. Yeap, he is all boy.

















This engine powered 3 ice cream churns. We sampled the strawberry. There is nothing like homemade ice cream:)

We had a wonderful time and were completely exhausted at the end of the day.

What types of festivals do you and your family like to attend?