Saturday, June 21, 2014

Summer is here!

And I'm still around, LOL!  It's been ages since I posted, I know.  What can I say, I've been busy.  And my SD card fried so I couldn't take photos.  Eh, let's go with that last one.  We have been busy but so much of it has been doing things that aren't really worth blogging about.  But I did a tour of the house and found a few things worth mentioning.

Since my last post, I chaperoned a Disney World trip and was reminded why I NEVER go to Florida.  I vacation as far north as possible.  If I wanted heat and humidity I would stay in Tennessee.  But......this...

these smiles made it all worth while.  And those kids smiled like that for 4 days.  I would not have missed that for the world.

We had the pleasure of seeing a friend's daughter get married.

Yes, she really did look like a princess.
 My son tested and earned his black belt in TaeKwanDo.  I cannot express how insanely proud of him I am.

First degree black belt at 14.

Got daughter packed up and sent off to Colorado for her summer internship at Creede Repertory Theatre.

The box office staff dressed up for Annie Get Your Gun.
I finished a cowl for my daughter.

I thought the pattern looked very Downton Abbey-ish and I'm very pleased with how it turned out.
I finished one side of the front porch.

And I managed to stucco the raised bed on the other side.

When we were at Disney, my son found the perfect Father's Day present.  Gnome Mickey!  He fits in perfectly with Gnome Elvis and Gnome Bob, LOL!

There's more but I am doing laundry and getting ready for a road trip to Colorado!  Just my son and I are driving out there.  Husband is meeting us there (he gets to fly).  Since it is a really long trip anyway we will be taking Sandie's scenic route which includes stops at all of the unusual, fun, and downright bizarre attractions we can find.  Yes, there will be photos! (New SD card!)

As always, thanks for stopping by!


Friday, May 2, 2014

Do NOT attempt this at home.....

Of course, that covers most everything I do, LOL!  Sometimes, I really should leave things to the professionals.  Last year, or maybe the year before, a little neighbor girl hit our mailbox planter with her car.  It wasn't that big a deal, she was terrified, her dad looked like he was ready to throttle her and claiming it on her insurance would have made her premiums sky rocket.  Actually,  my husband is just a really nice guy so he thanked her for owning up to it and we said we would take care of it.  So I look at it every time I go get the mail and I keep thinking, "Gee, it can't be that hard to fix."  Ha!  Well, I went to Home Depot and bought a bag of mortar, a trowel, and decided to tackle it myself.  I very quickly learned that, yes, it actually is that hard.  After lots of cursing, lots of mortar (most of it inside the planter and on the ground)  and banging the heck out of the brick with a rubber mallet, I called it done.

It holds dirt.  I'm considering planting ivy around it.  To be honest, it was probably worth doing just for the enormous entertainment value my husband got out of it.  He's still laughing.  And yes, the mailbox is still sitting cattywampas. (yes, it is a real word)  No, I am not going to be fixing that.

Luckily, not everything turns out quite so, um, unique.  All of my plastic pots and planters faded last summer. Tennessee summers are HOT. 

 All of the spray paint is now labeled with "Works on Plastic".  So, I figured, why not?  Beats replacing them if it works.  It worked!

After using Behr's Deck Over on the deck last year, I decided I wanted to use it on the concrete front porch, steps and foundation.  OMG it looks amazing!  



And notice those bright blue flower boxes?  This is what they looked like before I painted them.

HUGE Difference
I found this cute little plant holder at a yard sale last year. I found plain clay pots that would fit and I spray painted those too!

Since everything else is getting a fresh coat of paint, I didn't want my little concrete buddies to feel left out.  I don't know what they're looking at.  Baby St. Francis is obviously pouting off in the corner.  Sheesh. 

I'm not finished with the foundation.  It is a total pain in the butt to paint.  The texture on the stucco is so heavy that I can't really paint it, I overload the brush with paint and sort of smush it on.  And yes, it takes forever.  But I'm out of paint and last year there was a huge rebate around Memorial Day so I'm keeping my fingers crossed they will do that again this year. Anyway, I still have to stucco the concrete block planters before I paint them.  No, I've never stuccoed anything.  Shush.  I'm sure it can't be that difficult........

My fabulously talented husband finished my sofa table and I've started to paint it.  I still have to finish the top. (it's upside down so you have to use your imagination)

Obviously I've been spending the majority of my days outside.  The rest of my time seems to be spent going to high school meetings ( my son will be a freshman next year), science and technology fair (my son and his team won the gold medal award)  and Senior Showcase and Banquet at my daughter's college ( she's a senior. WOOT!)  My son is in the National Junior Honor Society and they are going to Disney World in Orlando next week.   I'm going as a chaperone. Tough job, I know, but that's just the kind of mom I am.  We had a spaghetti dinner fundraiser a couple of weeks ago and I made cookies.  MICKEY MOUSE!  I think they turned out ok.  The kids really liked them.

Darling daughter is moving back from college this weekend.  Son still has 2 1/2 weeks left. (minus the little jaunt down to Orlando. Hee!  I'm so excited)  Band recitals, awards night, Honor Society induction, etc., etc., etc. and just for fun, there are two weddings we will be squeezing in there.  

I may be frazzled, crazy busy, or just crazy, but I am never, ever bored. 

As always, thanks for stopping by!  



Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Spring is here!

And I am not ready!  Gee, that's a newsflash, eh?  I went to my parents house in Illinois for what was supposed to be a weekend visit but life happened and I stayed a bit longer.  Dad got sick and ended up in the hospital for 5 days so I hung around another week.  When I left on my trip, a few of the Bradford pear trees were starting to bloom but nothing else.  I came home to rose bushes all greened out and my lilac bush is absolutely covered with buds just ready to burst into flower.

All of the seeds I planted have sprouted and will need to be planted in a week or two.  It will have to be two, I suppose.  The pots I had them in last year faded terribly.  Rustoleum and Krylon both have spray paint made specifically for plastic so I am going to try to paint them.   The Krylon comes in bright primary colors and you spray it directly on the pots.  The Rustoleum is a primer and any paint can be used on top.  I bought both and have sprayed a pot with each.  Both have a 7 day curing time so in a week I will know which one works the best.

I was working on the border of an afghan when I went to Illinois.   I managed to finish it yesterday.

While I was at my parents, I finished the applique on another little people block

I want to change 2 of the hats but overall I am happy with it.  Ugh!  Now that I see the photo, one of the lines on the jungle gym is goofy.  Oh, well, I will fix that when I change the hats.  There is embroidery to do on all of the blocks but each time I finish the applique I can't wait to get to the next one, LOL!  I decided I will finish all of the applique, then I will go back and do the embellishments. 

My fabulously talented husband is building a sofa table for me.  It's going to run along the whole back of the sofa and is about 8" wide.  Just wide enough to display photos.  He's almost finished building it, then I have to paint it.  Hopefully, I will be able to get to it before the weather gets too hot.  Spring does not last very long here in Tennessee.

I did find time to support the local economy while in Illinois.  I like to do my part.  This little guy decided to come home with me.

Isn't he cute?  I love hedgehogs.  

Laundry is calling so I'll stop here.  

Thanks for stopping by!


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Fast forward to March!

This is supposed to be my slow time of year.  Not even close.  We got back from New Zealand and I feel like I haven't stopped.

WARNING!  The rest of this blog is a symptom of the total chaos in my house at the moment....  random, disconnected and, well, you get the idea.

We had St. Patrick's Day.

 Now we are ready for Easter.

We've had nights at the symphony, been to a musical, bridal shower, meetings for upcoming high school freshmen, my daughter was home for spring break, my son was out for spring break the following week (no, I get absolutely nothing done when they are home) we are planning for a different bridal shower and I have more projects started than even I can deal with.  We have had plumbers at the house for over a week, the gas shut off in the middle of the night because of a screw up by said plumbers, a carpet company out to repair a different screw up by said plumbers.....and we bought a new car.  I strained my achilles tendon while doing all the painting and am supposed to stay off of it until it is better.  Yeah, that's not happening.  The next few months aren't looking any better. Well, hopefully, we are done with the plumbers.

My daughter's school was doing Shrek the musical and I had promised to help with the costumes so as soon as I got back I spent a few mornings helping in the costume shop.  That was a lot of fun.  I wasn't in charge or responsible for designing anything, I just sewed.The big bonus for me was I learned to use a serger! I've always wanted to use one but hadn't had the opportunity. I was so enthused I bought one.  (grin)    

While I was in New Zealand, I saw my sister in law's new Handi-Quilter.  I couldn't even bring myself to ask about it because I wanted a quilting machine so much.  Yes, yes, I was absolutely green with envy.  When I was looking at sergers I also checked out the quilting machines but they were out of my range for now.  Plus, Raewyn has been machine quilting for a while and is quite acomplished.  I am just starting out and really couldn't justify the purchase.  I did find a sewing/quilting machine with an extended throat that was in my price range and it will be big enough for wall quilts and other small projects.  So, yeah, you guessed it.  I bought it.  And what have I done with these two wonderful new machines?


Yep, they are still in their boxes in my living room.  The two bags are full of serger thread. Well, they were on sale for about a dollar a cone.  Couldn't pass that up.  Sigh..... I have to    HAVE to get my sewing loft organized before pulling these out.  My awesome husband put brand new shelves in the closet so now I just have to get up there and get it organized.  I had been sewing in the spare bedroom but my husband moved his office down there.  He said he would have more room but I have a suspicion that part of the reason was to force me to get my crap together and organize my space, LOL.  Can't blame him for that.

When we travel, one of our favorite things is going to galleries and craft shops.  We always pick up a new print or something from a local artist. We can't afford all of the prints we find plus we are running out of wall space so we buy cards when we can find them.  Sometimes I frame them, other times they just need something else.  I bought some cards from an artist I know here in Nashville, Janet Lee Janet Lee's Etsy Shop.  I fell in love with these and wanted to hang them as a group but I didn't want traditional frames.  I bought some awesome scrapbook paper for my paper roses and decided that it would look great with the bird prints. Alan (my fabulously talented and accommodating husband) cut 2 squares for each print out of some scrap thin plywood we had. One square was the exact size of the print, the other about and inch and a half larger. I painted all the edges, decoupaged the scrapbook paper to the large squares and the prints on the smaller squares, then glued the small squares to the top of the larger ones. I love how they turned out!  And they are so light that I can use velcro to hang them on the wall.  

I'm heading to my parents house tomorrow and I'm taking my little people blocks to work on.  I've been choosing all the fabrics and getting the background fabric ready but I haven't sewn a thing on them since I got back in February.  I've been trying not repeat fabrics so I do a lot of digging through my wonderfully organized piles. Not. 

Sandie's version of organized chaos. It's all in one pile.

I need to give a shout out to my often mentioned sister in law, Raewyn.  She is so talented I'm always amazed at her projects but she outdid herself this past Christmas.  She made the most adorable "Pop" monkeys for all of the grandkids. She took her father's socks, his favorite sweater, and his pin collection and made each kid a one-of-a-kind memory of their grandfather.  Here are our two youngest with theirs.  (The coordinated outfits of my children is completely accidental.  Couldn't get them to do this if I had tried)

They are so proud of these!

The monkeys have decided they like to ride on the bike.

Happy monkeys!

We had a few warm Spring-like days and I planted seeds.  Unfortunately, I forgot to label them.  I'm hoping we can identify them before it is time to actually plant them in the garden.  No, I don't know what I was thinking when I did that.

Mystery seedlings!
Last but not least, my new car!  

I love it!

Well, I have to get ready for my trip tomorrow and there are soooo many things to do around here so I'm off!

As always, thanks for stopping by!


Friday, February 21, 2014

One Holiday Behind

Before we left on our trip, I had started making a paper rose wreath for Valentine's Day.  I finished it today. On the plus side,  it will be ready for next year.

I found the pattern and tutorial for these roses on Pinterest. (I LOVE PINTEREST!)  This is the website The Elli blog  and she has many great ideas.   The directions say use thin letter weight paper but I used card stock and it worked
great.  The wreath took about 60 roses and it's 1 rose to an 8 1/2"x11" page.  I glued them to bamboo skewers but you could use toothpicks or stem wire.  I used the bamboo skewers  because I wanted to use a straw wreath as a base and they needed to be sturdy to poke into the straw.  I just wrapped burlap around the wreath then poked the flowers into it. I didn't even bother taking off the plastic before I wrapped it. The I tied an organza ribbon at the top for a hanger.

I love these so much that I started hunting around for fun double-sided cardstock in other colors or patterns.

And I have some new paper to try out!  But first I have an Easter project to finish.  Luckily, it's just a bit of glitter and glue.  I think.  We'll see, LOL!

Hope y'all have a great weekend!