Tuesday, April 27, 2010

♪ Mi Mi Mi Mi ♪ and a Winner!

Even though I don't give or discuss awards, I still enjoy a game of tag every now and then. That's because there are times when my mind is empty...oh no you don't...don't even go there! Okay, where was I? Oh, yes, Lea tagged me with the "Ten Things About Me" meme and I need a topic for today. How perfectly serendipitous! So indulge me while I sing ♪ mi mi mi mi ♪ and try to tell you something new.

1. I wash my dishes in bleach water. (One must be careful as bleach and soap can be a toxic combination. Just don't use a soap with phosphates. I can safely use Palmolive and bleach. I think. Don't do as I do. Do your own research. I use a teaspoon of bleach to a gallon of water or a TBS for the entire dish bucket. Why? I'm blaming my Aunt Ess for this one! She got me started about 32 years ago and I've been at it ever since. Plus, I may have OCD.)




2. If yellow didn't exist in this world, my favorite color would be... I'm sure you can guess!



3. Last Saturday morning I ordered two books by Elizabeth Goudge from the interlibrary loan program. I've given up on finding them at a flea market. So it'll be The Bird in the Tree and Pilgrim's Inn by week's end. Maybe.



4. As of Tuesday last week, I am without an excuse to finish writing my own book. The missing chapters have been found and John has read them and given them a good report. Well, he would have to, I suppose. But he did sit right down to read them and did so until finishing and gave me this interesting compliment: "It kept my interest." Okie dokie then!



5. One of my secret wishes is to hire some Merry Maids. I haven't been able to give the upstairs, basement or garage the attention that they deserve since Nan arrived.



6. Right behind the Merry Maids, comes a landscaper. John is way too busy at "The Pondersosa" to give our little yard much attention. I want the lawn re-seeded and the garden made larger, and some raised beds built. No time for any of that either.



7. Both of my children have applied for better-paying jobs. I'm praying a lot.



8. I hate to sweat. I could not be like Judy and all you gals who enjoy a mountain climb. Despise climbing, but love to see the views. Yup, I'm one of those — I want to enjoy the reward without doing the work.



9. I've been missing A LOT of my blogging buddies lately. Speaking of which, whatever happened to Kari and Kijsa? I hope that they're busy writing a book.



10. Can you believe that I've made it to ten? Hey! Wake up! I'm getting to the best part: The Winner of the Giveaway is Donna at Cottage Days and Journeys. Congrats! I'm eager to see this tote "in person." One thing's sure, Donna will take an excellent picture of it.


As you know, I don't tag folks these days, but if your brain is ever empty, you can't go wrong with a good meme and I'll certainly allow you the use of this one.

Enjoy your Monday...



roses source: some free gif site somewhere...

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Mosaic Monday~All About Red



From lower left corner: Nan's coffee mug in soapy water, ring holder, books, poinsettia still very much alive, jelly cupboard drawer, the prize (see below).


Oh I'm so happy to have you drop by. You see, I have a little something that I want to share with you and I'm hoping that you'll help me out because it's been awfully quiet around here lately. So, if you'd like, please visit *this post* right here at A Haven for Vee and leave a comment to win the beach bag you see featured in the mosaic above. It's a wonderful gift and there's no reason why you shouldn't have the chance to win it! All you have to do is leave a comment on that post and have a blog/be a blogger. Comments close Monday night at 7 so be quick! To make it easier for you, I'm closing comments here in hopes that you'll comment there.

Clicking on the red will take you right back to *Mary's Little Red House Mosaic Monday.*

Honey



How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my lips. ~Psalm 119:103

photo source

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Azalea Mosaics



Brrrr, it's cold up here! I was out and about all yesterday afternoon and nearly froze to death. Apparently, all the stores have shut off the heat and it was miserable, even in the restaurant.

Still, the azaleas are blooming and it's one of my favorite times of year. Couldn't help but grab the camera. I never have enough time to devote to the process so am cheating by doing a mosaic...more presence don'tcha know. Interesting to see the hue differences between indoor and outdoor photos.

Please don't forget the beach bag giveaway. If you haven't already, check Friday's post (yesterday) for the info. I want more bloggers! Come on now, don't be shy. (Oh and you'll find links to both Keepsakes Etc and Simply–Bags on my sidebar under Some of My Favorite Places.)

May you have a wonderful, restful, pleasant weekend and think warm weather...

Friday, April 23, 2010

A Giveaway for Bloggers!

This week I was contacted by a very nice gentleman who'd love to give one of my blogging buddies a gift from one of the on-line stores that he and his wife own. A gift! How cool is that?! He is offering the Stylish Beach Bag, a red and cream-striped, perfect-for-summertime tote bag you see below.




You will note that it can be personalized (up to 12 letters). The bag, the personalization, and the shipping are all a part of this giveway. So much fun!

And, the best part is that this is a giveaway that you can talk about so please let your blogging buddies know. All one has to do to enter is comment on this post and be a blogger. Feel free to use this tag for your sidebar if you'd be willing to help me get the word out. Just click on the title of this post to snag the url so you can link back. (If you do, I'll enter your name twice.) Thanks so much!

Time is short as comments will close Monday evening, April 26 at 7. "The Hand" will make a selection and the winner will be announced Tuesday morning.

You can find more wonderful products by checking Throws and Beach Bags. I have spent a pleasant time browsing there myself.

Enjoy your Friday...
Comments are now closed. A big thank you to all who participated! Check back tomorrow morning to learn who the winner will be. (This is so exciting...I don't even know yet myself.)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

A New Tablecloth and Experimenting with Light and Camera Settings

These titles are getting longer and longer!

Yesterday, I showed you the photograph that my mother gave me. Today, I'm showing you the sweet little tea tablecloth (possibly Bridge tablecloth) that she found while shopping at a flea market up in her corner and then gave to me. And I'm tossing in my amateur experiments with camera settings for good measure.

So here is the new tablecloth. What? You can hardly see it? So typical of me! My setting was on Av F2.7 for this one, if that means anything for you. I liked how it came out. Composition is wonky, but that's just how it goes when I take a picture. I mean, how many different flower colors can I get into one shot? Ha!


Super Macro details above and below...


This was also taken on Av F2.7. I was intrigued by the light on the flowers, on the tag by Miss Sandy, and on the sofa back.

And I liked how dark the surroundings around this little sunlit bird really help him stand out. "Let's walk in the light" as John always likes to say.

Oh, please see the new giveaway button on my sidebar. Liane at Tender-Hearted Daisy is celebrating her daughter's 17th birthday with a giveaway. She doesn't say what the gift will be, which makes it just that much more fun. Go ahead! Visit and sign up!

A great Thursday to you...

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Tap Dance Recital Photo



Can you stand another? (Yes, I'm in that line-up somewhere.)

This photograph is a gift from my mother who is packing up a few things and releasing others. It appears that I have been released. When I opened the frame, out fell quite a number of other photos.

I was feeling a bit nostalgic and even sad when John said, "Have you ever seen more little girls needing to pee go at the same time?" Made me laugh and made me want to write on a photo again.



Enjoy your day!

Edited to Add: Judy wins. :D

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

April Breakfast



Is there anything more cheerful than orange juice at the breakfast table? I think not! Won't you sit down and pour a glass of this Florida sunshine? Our favorite orange juice is Florida's Natural™ with pulp. We can't always find it, but when we can, oh boy howdy!

Yesterday morning, my mother and sister joined us for breakfast completely surprising Nan. Nan seemed to enjoy it, though. Mother brought the "right" crayons, even if she didn't get the "right" doughnuts. We don't eat crayons, of course, but if you've read yesterday's post, you'll know what I'm talking about. Nan was terribly pleased to get the crayons and spent more time coloring today so all was well with the world.

After breakfast, John stayed with Nan while the rest of us went for a bit of shopping. So fun! Not. So closed. Oh well! We'll try again another day.



While out and about, I took a photo of my niece's daffodils and her neighbor's rhubarb patch. I've got to be careful as I'm developing some serious envy over all that rhubarb. My niece says that the family doesn't even use the rhubarb. It just always goes to seed.





So what would you like to talk about today? Anything? Any questions I can answer? Pour another glass of juice and take it away...

Monday, April 19, 2010

Blue Tea Cozy



My titles are so uninspired these days. That's because I am trying to make finding a former post easier than it had been back in the day when I wrote those fussy foo-foo titles that meant zip. It's all about being able to find it again. And I finally started using the post labeler, also in hopes of making finding things easier.

I've had a few questions about yesterday's post so wanted to explain. My mother told me that my grandmother loves to color. I had no idea that she enjoyed coloring; although, I love to color, too. Perhaps that's where I get it. Anyway, I printed off a spring picture of tulips and daffodils and she happily colored and colored and colored. Two days worth of coloring. On the same picture. I think that I must find out how to do a wax crayon transfer so that we can preserve her efforts. (She tells me that crayons used to be much better. Anyone know anything about that?) Anyway, at one point, I turned the corner and there she was still coloring and that little pang hit and I wanted to save the moment. (It is that picture I used for yesterday's post.)

While she colored, I worked on the tea cozy you see above. Now that I'm so smart about digital images and everything (those of you who truly are must be snickering behind your hands ;>), I reattempted one of Miss Sandy's tips of Quill Cottage and it worked this time. Perfectly! It just goes to show that I must read directions carefully and follow them closely.

I also got inspiration from Becky's recent post at Sweet Cottage Dreams. You can find that right *here.* Becky does beautiful work!

Things are looking up around here...no snow. Enjoy a wonderful Monday!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

When Strength Fails



Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures forevermore. ~Psalm 16:11

Neither death, nor life, nor angels. nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God. ~Romans 8:38–39

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Life Ain't No Ride on No Pink Duck



We've been in and out of rain showers for a few days here. This sweet image is so charming to me. Karen @ A Scrapbook of Inspiration offered it as a free image right *here.* It is from one of her many Pink Saturday posts, which are always not only lovely, but filled with lovely thoughts, too.

When I first saw the little girl in her pink-ribboned dress, I knew that Kathy at Shocking Pink Thread must've loved it because it fits the theme of her blog so well. That theme comes from one of Patsy Clairmont's quotes..."Joy must be the shocking pink thread in our tapestry..." Today, I found the quote it its entirety and laughed:

Joy must be the shocking pink thread in our tapestry because people seem stunned by the flamboyant stitch. When we exhibit joy during trying times, others view us as odd ducks, 'cause everyone knows life ain't no ride on no pink duck.


as taken from Contagious Joy by Christa Kinde.

On that fun note, let's look for the pink thread or perhaps even the pink duck!

(Clicking on the title of this post will help you get started. No, no! Good heavens, no! I am not calling Patsy Clairmont's web site a pink duck, though it could well be a pink thread.)

Edited to Add: Now what was I saying about joy in trying times? Overnight there have been some developments.


snow on forsythia




snow on lilac leaves




snow on tender new maple leaves in the forest


Breathing deeply here...okay, this might be an M&M breakfast morning.

Enjoy your Saturday. Hopefully, it's better than this...

Friday, April 16, 2010

Curly Tops



Is she not adorable? This is my mother in 1940 or so. I just love her sweet, demure expression, slightly hesitant, wondering, just beautiful.

Her hairstyle was the ever popular one of the day based upon none other than...



Photo Source

Let's see, just how long did Miss Temple's influence last anyway?

Here's yours truly wearing a surprisingly similar do in 1960. Oh my!


Photo Source
Here's little Shirley dancing with Bill Robinson. And, yes, how'd you know that I'd feel like dancing? Perhaps it's the hair.

I was actually a part of a duet...

or, if we count the dolls, a quartet. ;> I see that my little ballet partner missed the memo about the Shirley Temple curls and I missed the one about keeping my skirt down. Hahahaha...

Have a fun Friday!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

A Little Project for the Refrigerator

So when you were touring Haven's kitchen yesterday did you wonder what this was all about? The blank cardboard on the refrigerator that is?

It's a former day calendar that ran out of paper. It still is a nice piece of cardboard with an even better magnet strip. Therefore, in the interest of repurposing and experimenting...

I've recently learned how to use photomerge in photoshop so I have been playing with backgrounds and images. We have so many blogging buddies who very generously give us free images: The Feathered Nest, Down Abbie's Road, and Quill Cottage for starters.

Here's a little bookmark image I found at Abbie's The Vintage Moth.

It's important to remember what's up and I'm sure you can guess why!

Oops! I forgot a step.

The dreaded Distress Ink. I can never, and I mean never, get this to look right as you'll soon see.

The finished project...

As it happens, I was visiting blogs last evening long after this post was in the can. I found something that would've been so perfect for a fridge *here,* fourth image down. (ETA: the link is no longer valid. It showed a vintage ad featuring food.) Okay, the next time I have a day calendar that's run out of pages...

You have a wonderful day!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Kitchen Decluttering

This is the view that I usually present when I'm showing a kitchen photo. That's because I'm trying to avoid showing you something I consider too unattractive for Blogland.


This is what I consider too unattractive. The cupboards needing paint, the ratty, old wallpaper that has to go, and the 1982 stove. I've been thinking about my grandmother's table, which I use for an island. Thankfully, I have it because it comes in handy, but all that stuff below...ackkkk. I've thought of putting a vintage fabric around to hide the unsightly stuff underneath. I need that stool because I'm short vertically challenged and can't reach the top shelf of my cabinets. There's a recycling bucket there because we recycle. (This despite the fact that a number of us are wondering what happens to that garbage. I certainly hope that it isn't dumped offshore someplace. We have all heard the rumors. Anyway, we recycle and I wouldn't mind the recycling if I thought it were doing some good. I'm just not sure.) The small wooden box holds kitty food.

Anyway, back to Nan's old kitchen table. I painted the far end the same color as the jelly cupboard. My daughter nearly had a fit when I showed her. She wants me to leave the blue and well enough alone. So I guess that I'd be attempting to find some vintage fabric that would include plenty of colors...shouldn't be too, too tough.

This still looks cluttered, but it is an improvement. The back of my stove was formerly covered with salt and pepper shakers, a basket with spices, little whatevers. All gone now!

This is the microwave, toaster, and coffee pot corner. Since there is no place to stash the toaster and coffee pot, I've been thinking of making some covers from the same fabric that I'd use on the table. Any thoughts about that?

One of the things that I had been doing was to line up the counter with stuff to hide the electrical cords. Had no idea that that was what I was doing until the decluttering began. I asked for an extra outlet, but now is not a good time to be asking the carpenter for anything as he's on overload. His answer to my dilemma was to move the microwave from the corner to its spot beside the fridge. Well, I guess that works for now.


Only I would show you my dish drainer loaded with dishes. Gheesh.

Will leave you here where we began. There's a lot to be said for decluttering. Please visit FlyLady on my sidebar if you need any tips on the process. She saved my sanity one year and I still refer back to her when I'm overwhelmed with the house.

Oh, you wanted to see a before shot? Not on your life!! ;>