Sunday, March 29, 2009

Finishing the "guest room"

Today I finally finished my office/guest room. All I was waiting for was to find the finishing touches, and they are finally in place. Yay!

This room used to be Justin's. He never appreciated the view and kept it . . . well . . . not very tidy. It was pretty beat up after having a teenager in it for 4 1/2 years. Well, when he moved out last year I did what any normal empty nester would do - I took his room and moved my office into it. I mean, it has the best view in the house. So . . .  doesn't that sound logical? Paint, carpet, furniture, linens - you name it, I replaced it! It was turned into a wonderful new guest room/office. But when Justin moved back home, I thought to myself "Now why would I put a 20 year old guy/slob into my brand new room?" Hello? So I put him into his brother's room, (which was the next project on my list - but now it's on hold). I KNOW Brandon will not be moving back home. (But if he ever does need to spend the night, like on Christmas Eve and Easter Eve, he has a really nice room to stay in. With a view!) 

So anyway! Got to rambling there . . . here's the room!

This is the SW corner where I placed my desk. Obviously, I love the view! It's foggy over in the valley today though, so it's kinda hard to see.

Behind me is a little sitting area by the closet.

This is the other side of the room. I just hung the plates this morning. I've had that picture for about 20 years now. It used to be pale, pale blue, I just painted it black when I decided to hang it in this room. I wanted a creme and black toile comforter, but I couldn't find one for a reasonable price at the time I was looking. So finally selected this one instead. Because I wanted the boys to be comfortable in here, I wanted it somewhat masculine. And they both approved of it all when I finished it up. 

The nightstand . . . just waiting for an overnight guest.

You know how I am longing for a cabin of our own in Colorado? Well, on our vacation last summer Mark found this artist who did small miniature watercolors of cabins. 
He surprised me by purchasing one for me! Unbeknownst to me, 
here is what it says on the back. 

Now I can "honestly" say Mark bought me my very own cabin in Colorado. 
(Isn't he just a clever guy? He knew exactly how to get out of that one!)

Below is my "Sister Angel" I got for Christmas 
from my Sister-in-Law Christie whom I LOVE!!!! 
I knew exactly where I wanted her when I opened her up.

I could not snatch these guys up fast enough when I saw them at Home Goods. 
I knew I'd find a good home for them.

When I found this shell plague, I thought it finished things off nicely.

So that's the room. Home you enjoyed the little tour!

Have a good week ahead everyone! Be safe!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

It's feeling like Eastertime around here!

Hello! I must admit - it is a GORGEOUS day here today! 
Everything is in bloom and it smells heavenly outside! 

I went shopping ;) and I've added a few things 
and changed some things around. 
Let me know what you think!

This is my entry.
I bought the large candle holder (it is about 4 1/2' tall) 
the green wooden tray, the birds in the tray, the wooden Easter boxes 
and a few other little things all at Tai Pan. 
I had the birdcage on the landing of the stairs.

A little closer view

I love these birds. They are actually quite large, about 7" long.

Isn't she sweet?

A little tag I made . . . That is an old earring holding the pink flowers on 
with a butterfly charm above it . . .

Pretty pink . . .

On the entry chest right at the front door.

The little sign is actually a giant Easter postcard I found in a little boutique.

And I added a little bling because it sparkles so pretty with the sun coming in the front door. This is just a "thrifting" necklace I found.

Here is another view of my favorite piece, over on the buffet in the dining room. It is a cake plate with matching spatula that Grammie gave me . . . golly, years ago!

I've been playing around with the dining room and here is the new arrangement on the dining room table. I changed the runner to the pretty gauzy pink cloth I won from Catherine's Teacups (YAY) for Valentines Day! I placed an old piece of lace I've had underneath and I really love the way the pink looks very fresh. 

I got 3 of these small votives in Mercury glass at a little boutique over in Glendora called Periwinkle's.  The pink beaded garland you see was another find from Tai Pan.

That's it for now. I'm having a "scrapbook" urge 
and need to go in and settle down and get started. 

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!!! 



Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Articles "order"


Now you can take this post with a grain of salt - you can think I'm nuts, or you might just say - "hey, that sounds like it might be a good idea. . . " A friend of mine and I were just discussing this very thing, and I thought, "What the heck, if it helped us, it might help you, so post it Karen!"

How many of you read magazines? And lots of us tear out recipes and coupons - I know that. But how many of you "mark" articles that you want to revisit. And then promptly forget about it, or cannot remember where it was you saw the article, idea or photo - whatever it might have been.

Now some of today's magazines are truly works of art and are collected and retained forever. The Somerset Magazines are some of my favorites, and they are not cheap. I don't treat like them like any old magazine, I treat them like books. I don't want to tear things out of them and I don't want to fold pages, so I use post-its.

So my magazines go from this . . . 

to looking like this . . .

8 billion post-it notes, which tend to fall out, especially if you put the magazine in a magazine file. And it drives me nuts. It's all well and good if you have the time to go back and reread 20 magazines looking for one particular lay-out or flower arrangement. And it isn't much better if you have it marked with a post-it, because you have no clue what the post-it is marking until you revisit it!

So I tried something and it's worked kind of handy for me.

I got larger, lined post-its. And on them I write what it was that caught my eye in that particular issue. And I just list them all on the big post-it and put it on the back cover. And I marked each page with a tiny post it- just barely peeking out above the page number, so I had a quick turn to the marked pages.  Now when I need to know where exactly that pearl crystal barrette is, I look at the list on the back of each magazine and find it. 

I think it's much easier. If it sounds good, try it. I hope it helps you too!


Saturday, March 21, 2009

Decorating the house

For years, ten of them in fact, my family celebrated Easter out at "the river", the Colorado River which ends up in Lake Havasu. First in our motorhome, then we sold that and bought our lake house in Lake Havasu. We had several friends who had places there too and we would all get together. Most years my in-laws would join us too and several neighbors who we adored. One year there was close to 40 of us. And Easter was MY Holiday. I pulled out all the stops and hosted a big Easter brunch. Everyone helped out. Lox and bagels, honey baked ham, fresh asparagus, breakfast potatoes with herbs, eggs of course, fresh fruit salad, Wailea spinach salad, champagne, Bloody Mary's . . . and dessert too. Everyone would come over to our place and we would spend hours just eating and relaxing. So I had decorations galore, and they looked great on our wrap around deck around our little double wide mobile home. 

About three years ago we sold the place. It had turned into something other than what we had originally bought it for - family time. We had wonderful years there with the kids growing up, but - it was time to move on. So we sold it and bought our motorhome. (YAY! I had missed having a motorhome for those years - we couldn't afford them both, plus there was just NO TIME what with the boys hockey schedules dragging us around the country.) I brought all of my Easter decorations home and merged them with the ones I had for our old house. Everything looked great in a single story ranch . .. but this house? Wow. I purged a lot of stuff last year . . . and didn't really decorate a whole lot. But this year I was bit by the spring fever bug and wanted to make it look nice for Easter. 

Well surprise! My stuff doesn't look so good. I was all excited yesterday when I got it all out and then started to place it around and UGH! Some of it is my Mom's, which means it must go up - I don't care how corny it looks. So if my home looks a little "small" and bare - trust me, I'll be working on it over the next month. With these tall ceilings and huge rooms, I need BIG stuff. 

Hmmmmm ... must be time to go shopping!

Well, here's what I got.

The wine cart in the kitchen eating area. Just added the egg up top, the little bunny up top and the paint can below (don't like it there . . . )

The dining room buffet. I really like how this turned out. It's a very overcast and cloudy day out this morning, so the pictures look a little blah. But it really is pretty.

dining room table. Again, I like how this looks. It just looks blah here. 
Maybe I'll change the runner . . .

My little eggs and Cottontail Cottage I put on the end table in the family room.

Just threw some eggs in my little ducks planter and put it on top of my cookbook shelf.

I had bought these for my Mom. They have a grandmother and one grandson in each one. She loved them. I remember I got them at Price Club (that'll take ya back) it must've been 16 - 17 years ago. My kids were still small.  And I like my cute chicks, but they looked better on a buffet table than they do on my not so country family room fireplace mantle.

And this is all that ended up in my kitchen. Everything just looked so . . . 

SO! Onward! I need to hit the stores and the garden centers. I need fresh and colorful stuff!
I'll keep you posted!

We are going to a wedding this afternoon.  Our old friends Kevin and Gina's oldest daughter Jaime is getting married. And our good friends Mike and Jeanne will be there too! It promises to be a gorgeous and very fun time! I'll think of all of you as I drink champagne and dance the night away with my hubby. Whoo hooo!!!!! 

Have a good weekend everyone! 


Friday, March 20, 2009

Happy First Day of Spring!

Wow! Long time no talk to! 

Everything around here is moving along at warp speed. Grammie's funeral is not until Monday. Something about dying in one county and being buried in another . . .  and yesterday was my first day off in . . . golly,  the last week and 1/2. I am SOOOOO not used to working that much. I love my job, but GEEZ! I HATE DOING TAXES!! I am a homebody - I need time at home - cleaning, fluffing and stuff!  So needless to say - I spent the day yesterday doing what every woman does on her day off - SHOPPING! (good grief!)

So today - being the first day of Spring and all - I came down with a little case of spring fever. And so I took the initiative to venture up into the storage rafters of our garage by myself. Yes! I know! That's what husbands and sons are for. But hey - I wanted my boxes NOW! Now I had never been up there since we had it all built when we bought the house 5 years ago. So this was quite an adventure.

Yup. Up there, over my car - 
which needs to be backed out of the garage to extend the pull down ladder.

Now over my car and the entire Harley garage - well . . . that's all my Christmas decorations. Over the Jeep side of the garage - that's every other Holiday's decorations. And over the workshop - well . . . thats JUNK! Precious junk I can't bear to part with. Yet. Give me time. I need to go through it all. No rush - plenty of space. HA! But I'm very organized and everything is well labeled.
So up I go! Through that narrow little staircase. Climb up in there - 
and man it killed my knees crawling around!

Look right - that's Christmas. (Wasn't that just the other day?)

Crawl up and venture left and . . . 

The lights went out. 

I almost died! We put the garage lights and laundry room light on timers because the boys kept leaving them on all night. I guess I should've thought of that before I went up there. Our garage has no windows - nada, zip zilch, zero. PITCH BLACK!!!! Thankfully I had my digital camera and just kept taking pictures and got backed out and back down the ladder by using my flash!
OK, so I won't be going back up there again any time soon. I grabbed the 3 boxes marked Easter and was outta there!

Get it all unpacked and spread out on the dining room table, and then . . . hmmmmmm. 
There is stuff missing. Actually lots of stuff missing. Oh UGH! 
Gotta go back up - there!
Flip the timer to ONE HOUR . . . 


Isn't she cute?

So here are a few of my favorite Spring and Easter decorations. 

This is one of those little ceramic houses you put the tea-lights in. 
It is called Cottontail Cottage.
Just gorgeous in detail! 
It's about 14" tall.

And I have two different size eggs by the same artist also. I love them!!

These are two paint cans I bought for the boys when they were in elementary school. 
(Horrible idea for Easter Baskets!) But they sure are cute!

All I have done so far today is set the kitchen table with my spring dishes. Yes, I have different sets for different times of the year. (I know, sick.) 
But I have already confessed to being a dish-a-holic!

My center piece. It's a platter and a honey jar with a little spring arrangement. It is so bright and colorful that it just makes you smile when you look at it.

Oh and my wine cart! It makes me smile too! 

Please share your favorites with me! 
I love peeking in everyone's homes and seeing what they have and how they put it all together.
I'll finish up tomorrow, and post the rest then.
For now I need to go run some errands . . . it just never ends!

Have a wonderful weekend!!!!