Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Roy G. Biv, with a twist of Lemon (ade)

Have you photographed a rainbow recently?  Do you sometimes just want to take photos that don't have anything to do with anything?  I do.  I take lots and lots of photos every day.  It's like I'm compelled to take Canon in hand and start snapping.  Kind of like a bird loves to fly... and a fish loves to swim... and... well, that's about all I can come up with for now.  (Drama hasn't been coming naturally to me this week for some strange reason.)  Anyway.  I'm grateful I have a blog, so I can post random photos for myself.  I had a rare quiet moment of sheer boredom, when my house was cleaned, the kids were reading, and the dog was outside.  (Don't ask me about the laundry, Mkay?)  So, without further ado, here you have it.  My rainbow.  (Apparently we don't have a lot of violet in our home.  A bent up ruler was all I could find.)






Happy Wednesday friends.  Have a rainbow-licious day. 

Monday, November 29, 2010

Beware of a woman who blogs.

For those of you who blog, do you ever have something crazy, hysterical, or weird, just randomly happen...only you can't blog about it, because it involves people you actually know in real life? (Cough-family members.)  But in your heart you know that if you ever shared that story, your blog would probably go viral within the day?  And it nearly kills you to have this awesome pants-peeing material that you can't use? 


Yeah.


Well, I've got lots of those.
(Please ignore the blue screen where it should be white.  Technology and I just broke up yesterday.)


Or do you ever get together with a bunch of your favorite girlfriends, and someone says something-anything... then they look at you sideways, all suspicious-like, and threaten, "Not a word of that goes in your blog, do you hear me?"  


Yeah.

Plenty of that around here, too.

Or do you ever have a moment where something happens and you're laughing your hiney off, and a friend laughingly says, "I bet you're going to blog about this, aren't you?"  And then you suddenly don't want to, because that would make you totally predictable, and who wants to be predictable!?!!?

 
I just came here to say all that.  I feel much better now. 

Thanks.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

The closing of a weekend...

 I'm doing my best to get into the holiday spirit this year.  I'd love to say that I'm succeeding gloriously... but some years just feel off, and I'm afraid this is going to be one of them.  Do you guys every feel like that?  What do you do to shake it?  Even if I'm not really feeling spirity (made that up) this year, I'm at least finished with my Christmas hall-decking, and that feels great.  I was going for low or no cost decorating this year, so come along with me and I'll show you a little bit of what I came up with.  I took this tray from my dresser, and placed some filled votive candles on it.  Then I cut a couple of wooden, red beaded garlands up, and used them like "faux cranberries." I sprinkled them all around the candles.  (About ten years ago, I purchased these red beaded garlands from Lowe's so I don't know how much they would cost, but I can't imagine a string or two would be that much.)
 We actually got a ton of snow on Thanksgiving day, and my children couldn't have been more thrilled.  Sadly, it was gone by the next morning.  I'm so hoping we get a ton more this winter!  I would turn inside out, if we had a white Christmas!
 The day after Thanksgiving, we tromped around the woods, in search of a great tree.  Though we didn't find one out in nature, we did come home with plenty of greenery for wreath-making!
This year, I am involving the hoodlums in as much as I can.  Making memories is my goal.  So on Saturday, JJ actually helped me make a tremendous mess out of all that greenery, and we created wreaths together.  (Truthfully, I think he just wanted the chance to use wire snippers, but it was so much fun, and I really enjoyed his help!)  We tucked some seeded eucalyptus amongst the greens, and they turned out beautifully.  I hung them in each window.  Also, you may notice that my big blue frame is now sporting chicken wire?  I decided the wire that was strung across wasn't what I wanted, so I bought a roll of chicken wire, and spray painted it with some oil rubbed bronze spray paint.  Now it's all ready for Christmas card hanging.  (Oh!  And the best news... my broken fourth chair was just completed.  I still  have to sand it and seal it, and I'll have a complete set again!) 
Once we purchased our first ever, fresh tree, (which smells heavenly!) we put it into this galvanized bucket.  I scoured the planet looking for one I could afford, and landed on one for under $14.00 at Lowe's!!  My handsome husband put up all the lights.... 
...and then the hoodlums took over, placing ornaments all around. They actually did a fantastic job, and the tree only got the tiniest bit of tweaking by me, once they were all tucked into their beds. 
 Christmas is peeking out all over the house now.
 I'm keeping things a little more uncluttered than I have, in years past.  Not every surface has been Christmas-ified.  It doesn't come naturally for me to simplify.  I'd put something out, then I'd put it back away.  I want our home festive, but not crazy.  I'm not sure I can do that... but I'm trying.
 Ava and I made the gingerbread cookies that are hanging on our tree.  It was a precious time of rolling, cutting, and eating icing.  I have never hung cookies on a tree, but I love them!  I also found some darling, old-fashioned candy canes.  It looks so pretty!
 Lastly, I must leave you with this photo.  You know those books with photos of men doing chores?  I believe they are called "Corn for women" (Only, the word corn begins with a "p." Ahem.)

Yes, well, here is mine...

(grin.)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The first of many...

I hope everyone's thanksgiving was awesome!  Before I begin, I have to say thank you for all of the readers who leave me such sweet comments.  You make my day each time I read what you have to say, and I love every single one.  My husband gets to hear all about what you guys say each night, and knows so many of you by name!  Isn't that funny?  I don't deserve such delightful followers, because I can't seem to get around to you each like I used to, but life... it's just not the same pace it used to be! Anyway... speaking of hectic paced life... It's here.  It's officially here, and I'm so excited!! (It's not often I can get away with the double exclamation points, but when the occasion arises, I'm ready.)  I'll show you around once we get our tree up, (sometime tomorrow if the weather cooperates) but for now, check out this fun project.  I wanted something pretty and fragrant in my kitchen, so I made a trip to my potting shed area, and my local garden store.  I came home with a rosemary tree and some bulbs.  (They actually gave me this red bird ornament for free, "just because."  I didn't even have to do any eyelash batting!)
 This holiday season, I'm going for fun, red, and fun.  Did I mention fun?  Because my family is still in some serious need of fun, so my decorations are going to reflect that. I'm using things I've already got and only tweaking it slightly.  So happyyyyy!!  (I'm sorry, I get carried away.)  I already had the white pots, but I sweet talked Adrain into sanding them down more, and I painted the big pot bright, happy, red.  Then I got out my green, yellow, and white craft paints, and "aged" my pots, with the exception of the big red one. 
To age them, you'll want to mix green and yellow until you have sort of a mossy green color.  Then, working on the bottom half of the pot only, layer on the green paint a little at a time, blotting gently with a damp cloth.  Do the same thing with white, and if you need to add some more green, go for it.  Ya can't mess it up, I promise. Oh, and don't forget about the saucer!
 I gathered all my finished pots onto a tray, and planted  a paperwhite bulb, a fern, and a rosemary tree.  If I can keep these things alive throughout the holidays I'm going to treat myself to a day at a spa.  I'm just kidding... Truth is, I'm secretly betting on which one I'll kill first.  Which is why I gave myself at least one pot with nothing but moss and a bird ornament.  (Though I'm pretty sure I could kill that too.)  I wrapped some red and white twine around my big red pot, and tied an ornament to it.  (The platter on the wall isn't staying... I went back the plain white one after seeing this photo.)
Now I'm off to bed, after a nice Thanksgiving day... But I'll be back with photos of the rest of the house next week!

What are you doing in your home?  Tell me, I'm dying to hear!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thanksgiving table and glittered acorns

Truthfully, my original plan for Thanksgiving this year, included two things:  Paper plates and turkey sandwiches.  I really haven't been "feeling it."  Everything has felt a little bit off this year, so I decided turkey sandwiches would be easy.  Then my children heard about that plan a flipped out!  They attacked with statements like, "What?!  No Turkey?! But we have to have a turkey!  That's the best part of Thanksgiving dinner!"  Or the more dramatic one of, "I look forward to that turkey all year long!" 

(Clearly these children get their dramatic side from their father.  Ahem.)

So now... I'm cooking a turkey.  (What can I say?  I cave to peer pressure.)  And setting my table.  I literally just started thinking about it last night, because I realized that I'd forgotten to buy paper plates.  I began by haphazardly pulling out dishes and dumping candles into the nearest bowl.  I had no plan! (No lie.  I don't even know who I am, anymore!)  Suddenly, I realized this bowl worked, because the color pairs perfectly with brown, and compliments my beloved turkey platter, resting on the sideboard. 
 I grabbed all of the white candles I could find, and stuffed this bowl with them.  I tucked a bunch of acorns around them, but thought it needed a little something extra.  I carefully brushed the acorns with glue, glittered them with fine bronze glitter, and sprinkled them around the bowl.   How cute are glittered acorns?  Seriously, what was I even thinking with "paper plates?"  Puh-leeeeze!  (Know thy self!)
 This is a mock-up of my table, just for you, because I was too tired to put the leaf in, and set the table for the entire group.  I'll do that tomorrow.  I began with a circle of brown wrapping paper that I cut out, using the large blue bowl as my template.  On top of that, I layered one of my everyday white plates, and a turkey plate. (I found an inexpensive box of them a few years ago, at TJ Maxx.)
 I can't set a pretty table with out place cards.  It's against my religion.  (Or something like that.) I hot glued a few of the acorns with tops that I'd glittered, right onto cardboard tags.  Then I placed them on top of the silverware.
My table came together effortlessly. (Which I needed this year.)  And yes, it's pretty and our turkey will be yummy... but when it comes to the one thing I'm most thankful for, it would have to be the fact that Jesus paid the price for my sin and I get to spend eternity with him.  Perfect love, from a perfect God.  Because of that, our family is going to try something new this year for Thanksgiving.  We are going to reflect on that, and have family communion!  My dad is going to lead us, and my kids are super excited!  I borrowed their juice glasses so everyone could have a little grape juice as we participate and say thank you for the most significant sacrifice ever given. 
Lastly, I can't leave you without sharing this photo for the grandparents and aunties and uncles.  Look at our little Pilgrim girl!  Isn't she growing up?

If you want instructions on how to make this super sweet bonnet, Martha lays it out for you, right here!

(Just think... my next post will probably be all about Christmas decorations!  Wheeeee!)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Leaving and Returning...

Adrain and I had the opportunity to dump our precious hoodlums into the loving arms of my sis-in-law this weekend.  Then we celebrated fifteen years of marriage, by taking a little road trip, and crashing at a 120 year old, restored hotel and spa.  It was absolute heaven!
The hotel was warm and welcoming. 
As we climbed the four flights of stairs to our room, I looked up and saw this.  Isn't it gorgeous?

I'm a bit of a good hotel junkie.  I love a clean, nicely decorated place.  And the best part about having a spa inside the hotel, is that you get to use all their bath products!  These were amazing. 
As I was reading this post, I got inspired by photos of "befores" and started thinking about that, as well as taking photos of "afters."  I was thinking about it all weekend long, looking at things with a fun twist on perspective.  This would obviously be an "after."  (You have to love a hotel that gives you chocolates.)
After our spa treatments, I stole this tea bag and took it back up to my room to savor.  It was so pretty I photographed it.  And I love the fact that my husband randomly sees things that might photograph well and says things like, "Hey, what about getting a shot of this?"  It's good to have a fan. 
After.
The bathrooms were so adorable too.  And really, how often can you say that about a hotel?  It makes getting ready less of a chore, when you have pedestal sinks, and old fashioned black and white tile floors!  Have I mentioned that I love old buildings?  Because I do.
If you live anywhere in the Seattle area, and want to escape for relaxation, you should check this place out.  It is well worth the drive and the people in this town are crazy friendly. 

Directly across the street from the hotel, is an art gallery that stole my heart.  Showcased, was the most gorgeous and colorful art by Lorna Libert.  Seriously, anyone who paints old trucks gets my vote.   Her colors are so fun, fresh, and somehow make you feel lighthearted.  Isn't she amazing? 
Adrain was a fan too.  I love a man who will wander an art gallery with me.  I think I'll keep him. (wink.)
If I could have, I'd have taken this baby home with me.  I loved it!! 
But the real reason I loved her art, she obviously has a terrific sense of humor.  Life is way too short to take yourself seriously, and her art is like a blast of refreshment and humor, rolled onto a canvas.  I mainly took this photo for my brother because I knew it would crack him up.  (Plus, my husband told me to.)
Finally, after a ton of relaxing, laughing, steam rooming, (I made up that word) spa treatments, (facial and manicure for me, massage for the big guy) art gallery and antique mall wandering, we headed home to our babies.  I love leaving, but I love returning even more. 
And we drove right into some snow.  It was the perfect way to come home, because we don't get much snow, and I love snow! 

If I don't check in again this week, I want to wish y'all a Happy Thanksgiving!