Thursday, October 29, 2009

Everything Old Can Be Made New Again

The name of the game these days is reuse, recycle and re-purpose. There are so many ways to do this. It's always fun going through granny's attic and finding treasures in the cobwebs, blowing off the dust, hauling it down the stairs and placing it in that one spot that  has been crying for just the right piece.

Or take a stroll some Sunday, latte in hand and find those off-the-beaten-path stores that have everything that "regular" stores don't - I'll take a day like this over most anything else

Of course, there are those great neighborhood yard sales and church bazaars

Some folks are superb at repurposing items. Sometimes don't you find a piece that intrigues the heck out of ya because it is so different and so beautiful but you just don't know what you'd do with it once you brought it home? Well, Toni over at The Tattered Cottage just finished a project that caught my eye and I just have to share it with you.

I am sure you have come across or even own one of those antique bed frames that are so fabulous. Gorgeous woods, attention to details - you name it. However, they don't always accommodate our modern day proportions whether it has to do with our actual mattresses or our actual physiques.  Toni fixed that! Here is her project of re-purposing an old bed frame after using the headboard for the back and cutting the foot board in half to create the arms to what is now a very cool bench!

Here it is all finished and painted up...

You won't find this piece at your average store!!! Great job, Toni! Thanks for allowing me to share your imaginative and skilled craftsmanship! Visit her at The Tattered Cottage.

Feels Like Another Lifetime - Kinda

This weekend I am reaching back to my past while making the most of the present and emboldening my future. Barb and Nancy were my 2 best friends in high school. We graduated in 1978. (I can hear all of the high math calculations happening at this very moment).  That June, we each ran out of the starting gates, vowing to NEVER lose touch and to ALWAYS keep one another an integral part of each other's life events. Well, life events unfolded and of course, days turned into months until all of a sudden so many years passed that I figured that that part of my past was to remain just that. So now here we are, about 30 years later. It's almost surreal. So much has changed yet nothing has changed. I look into their faces, their eyes, and I see the same people that helped me put together the pieces of the puzzle called life all those years ago. We all are who we all are because we all 'were'. We all were friends. We all were there for each other no matter what it was for. We all were there for one another in a pure, unadulterated, 100%, non-judgmental spirit. We all cared about one another without pretense or insecurity or a feeling of entitlement. No scorekeeping. No competitions. To put it simply, no games.

Nancy lives in Korea with her hubby. She has 2 children. One just graduated college, her second is in college. Barb lives in NYC and is an at-home mom for her 2 children, 15 and 12 yrs. old. I live in the country of upstate NY with my hubby and 17 yr-old.

Anyway, we've all congregated at Barb's home, which is beautiful. She is an artist. Her life is her studio. Her home is one of her many palettes. She has a great way of creating little vignettes. Since it is autumn, they all incorporate seasonal elements. I took the liberty of taking some pics ....

Thanks, Ladies - for everything! xoxoxo

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Where Does The Time Go?


Okay- -do ya  get a little nervous seeing that holiday pic?? Me, too. But I just wanted to say “take a deep breath and relax” because we still have Halloween and Thanksgiving to think about – er – enjoy- before we need to be be tunneling through our attic and basements for the Ho Ho Ho’s of decorations.

Actually, I love decorating for the holidays although, like most of us, I don’t have the  time to give it the all out effort I would like.  Still, what I do accomplish, is fun to do and looks  festive and pretty.  So, in this blog I am going to offer some suggestions that will help ease us into the holiday season without going overboard or getting overwhelmed.

First – at the risk of sounding too "Suzy Homemaker-ish" - one of the simplest ways to add a festive touch to your kitchen or dining room is by creating a table scape with sugar glazed fruit. It’s  quite attractive, adds a subtle touch and is edible :) Plus, it's so darn easy, what have ya got to lose?

Here is a link to J. Peter Allen’s  (copy and paste into your browser) How-to video….

or you could keep reading and I’ll tell ya how…
For the glazing you will need egg whites and granulated sugar, each in their own bowl. The amount of  each depends on how much glazing you decide to put on however much fruit you want to use. So, just to get ya going, let’s start with 3 eggwhites and a cup of sugar and add more as needed. You will want to pick fruit that is somewhat, let’s say, durable. Ya know, fruit that won’t shrivel up and go bad after a day, such as strawberries.  Pears, apples, lemons, limes and grapes are good durable fruit :) If the fruit will eventually be used to accent a wreath, then secure floral wire or good ol’ green pipe cleaners onto each piece.  And you can buy the lesser grade fruits because not only are they cheaper but smaller in size. The smaller sized fruit are easier to manipulate for projects like wreaths.  You can also apply the sugar glaze to small tree branches and evergreen sprigs. So pretty!!!
Okay – now for the fun part. You can either paint the egg white right onto the fruit with a craft-style broad bristle brush, or you can simply dip the fruit into it. To apply the sugar, either roll the fruit right into the sugar or sprinkle it on a little at a time.  Allow the fruit to dry on paper towel for 2-3 hours before using it to make your displays and decorations.You can even pop it in the freezer to move the drying process along.

Now you’re ready to rock n’ roll.

Cheers!!! Until We Blog Again......

Note to Self: Get Organized

Alright - So here I am, many hours and weeks later after trying to figure out the ins and outs of blogging. I probably shouldn't be posting stuff until I really know what I am doing. But I hate to wait. And I learn best by doing - whether I do it right or not - I learn.  

I PROMISE to start getting some ideas and such on here once I get a few more wrinkles ironed out. Today I am trying to unearth the etiquette and legal stuff surrounding quotes and pics from other sources. If I screw up, please know I mean no harm!

On my topic agenda, I am going to look at ways to celebrate holidays through seasonal decorating. I prefer to honor Mother Nature more than I do Mother Mall. 

So I will be looking out my front door for inspirations.......I do live in wine country


..and there are lots of farms around here, as well. If you are not as lucky, find the nearest farmer's market in your area and have at it!

Cheers! Until We Blog Again..........

inspiration is all around even where we least expect it