Florida!

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ImageSo, a lot has happened in the past year and a half. We moved to Sarasota, Florida in June of 2011 after finding out my Uncle Howard had stage IV lung, liver, and bone cancer. It was time for me to be near my own family. We were blessed to be able to spend time with him before he passed away in November. He was a great man and we miss him daily.

My Aunt is starting to heal and starting to come to life again. It has been lovely sewing with her and watching her cooking and smiling. The three of us crawl into her bed on Sundays and watch movies and she and Sophie are in the midst of planning an epic adventure this Summer. They are going to Europe for a few weeks. The two of them are beyond excited 🙂

This month Aunt Linda and I have been working on sewing projects and needed to hit one of the local quilt stores. We ran into one of my new friends and she introduced us to some of the women who work there. I’m so excited because not only did I meet a new friend my age who loves quilting but I found this fabric:ImageI LOVE IT!!! I’ve never made a quilt for my bed so I am making a simple quilt for myself. It’s nice to be sewing again 🙂

ImageI’ll keep playing…

Cheers!

Kitchen update

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I took today and relaxed. HA! Well, relaxed to me is different from most people I think. Sophie invited her friend over and while they played I spent the day painting. My friend, Julia, introduced to me to gel stain and I love the stuff. I have had the same can since we moved in. That small can has painted the brass lamps in the hall and foyer, a mirror in the foyer, the cabinet in the hall bath, and now one side of the kitchen. There is still enough to cover the other side it is just late and I ran out of steam.

Before the paint

 

Eventually the cabinets will be recycled to the garage to be used for storage space out there. That is one day when I can afford to replace them and if I own the house 🙂 For now I replaced the hardware and painted them a mahogony color. I think they look nice. I hope it is not too dark.

After the paint!

Put back together

I still need to paint the doors that were on the top cabinets. I don’t think I will put them back on though. I kind of like the open concept. Maybe I will add molding around the openings and along the top to make them look more like furniture. We’ll see what other trouble I can get myself into later! Best $13 I ever spent. Thanks Julia!

Yay for days off :)

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I took a day off today. No special reason. I really just needed  a day to chill out and mentally regroup. I woke up and was able to make breakfast for Sophie, saw her out the door to school and then crawled back into my bed with a cup of coffee. It was nice to just lay there and listen to the birds outside. It was a beautiful morning! Also, I was able to go up to one of the high schools in Plano and have lunch with 2 of my amazing girls! I saw 4 other students and 1 former student that I still try to keep in touch with too so that was really cool 🙂 actually made my day! I love spending time with them!!

Then, I came home and painted the wood above my fireplace. I am not happy with how I styled the mantle but I will play with that later. I think maybe my mirror is too low? I read one time that you should angle them down a little so maybe that is it. I was trying to hang it to reflect the natural light from the french doors in the dining room but it is catching the lights from my ceiling fan instead. Oops.

Before - when we first moved in

Don’t mind the lovely styling of this particular picture. The furniture wasn’t in yet and it was the week before Christmas. While I was busy cleaning and getting the house ready, Sophie and Taylor (a student/friend 🙂 ) decorated our tree and Barb was painting the bathroom. Fun night!!

After – a fresh coat of paint

Maybe there is just too much stuff to look at on the mantle. Hmm. I’ll play with it this weekend. So hard to choose what to put up there. I don’t want all the clutter. Just because there is a huge mantle doesn’t mean I need to use it all!

 
 
I ended the night with a great dinner and silent auction for The Brook Ministry thanks to my friend Julia. Good food, great company and an awesome ministry! Sophie and I enjoyed seeing Pastor Steve again and being in the company of our church family. God is awesome and we are so richly blessed.

Housey house house.

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So, there are so many things that I want to do in my house and I have serious house ADD and haven’t finished one room yet. I keep starting projects in a room and then think of something else and start it too. Rooms I have started on: Hall bathroom, extra room, Sophie’s room, hall, great room, my room. Rooms that have been “finished” = ZERO! NADA! ZILCH!  A very good friend once said “you can never really finish a house because when you do – you have to sell it” true wisdom. I sat down and started a list of things I would like to do. It  includes little things like tearing down the fireplace that takes up the corner and extends on to either side of the walls. It would be cool just to have it on that corner wall. Like I said – little things 🙂

The laundry room alcove thingy is right next to the french doors in my great room. I needed curtains to cover the french doors and that alcove kinda posed a problem. There are no doors on it and you can’t hang curtains above it because it butts up against the corner of the wall. Also, it would be weird trying to hang curtains above both the french doors and the laundry room.

BUT, Ikea came to the rescue. They have curtain rods that go around corners so I could hang it over both and it still looks cool! I ❤ Ikea. I do have to say that these said curtain rods DO NOT come with screws. Not even Ikea type screws. No. Of course I didn’t look to see if they had them. I assumed they would have those nice alan wrenches they include in every piece that you buy. YES, every piece. I needed 8 rod holders so now I am the proud owner of 8 alan wrenches that only fit 1 little screwy type thingymabobber. Need one? So after we put up 4 rod holders we realized that the screws we bought were the wrong type. The package said “Due to all wall types being different we do not include screws and leave that to the buyer’s discretion.” O_o     So I used my discretion and bought the type for my wall. But, they were not up to par with what Ikea thought I would choose I guess. Kinda reminded me of when I was 8 and my mom said “You can choose ballet or piano.” Little sweet 8-year-old me: “OH! Piano!!” Mom: “Nope, ballet.” What??! So, after another trip to the hardware store we got them all up. I hung them high to give the illusion of grandeur in my little 70’s ranch home. I think they turned out quite nice!

Onto the kitchen! I painted the entire kitchen a nice Steamed Milk color and it really brightens the place up. Like I said earlier – I can’t replace the cabinets yet. I decided to take the doors off the upper cabinets and stain the cabinets a dark cherry or walnut. I plan on adding a little molding at the top of the cabinets and shelf bracket type things at the bottom so they will look like built in open shelving. I’ll post more as I get them done. For now the doors are off and the walls of the kitchen are painted. That was a lot of work for one weekend. This weekend I’ll paint the backs of the cabinets and stain the wood.

So far so good!! Can’t wait to work on it some more 🙂 I am falling in love with my little house.

Oh Goodness…

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So I needed to get internet for some studying I am doing and because Sophie is going into 6th grade and will start needing it a lot more now. I was checking deals and saw that I could get cable for $20 more. Well, it would save the time of having to adjust the little dial and the rabbit ears EVERY time we change the channel. Also it would solve the “What’s on TV tonight? Well, we only get channel 64 tonight so looks like it will be Qubo…” problem. I had very big reservations about it though. 1. I don’t want Sophie watching it ALL day long and doing much little else. 2. TV is from the devil anyways 😉 3. We really don’t watch it much to begin with and can go days without turning it on. Cable won out over all of that though because the few nights we do turn it on I would like to watch something other than spanish tv (only because it takes me a while to translate it all in my head and then to explain it all to Soph…haha!) or cartoons.

So this week I have learned that Jersey Shores not only burns my eyes and hurts my ears, I think I actually lost brain cells in the 15 minutes it was on. I would rather watch cakes fall over on the food network. HGTV and the food network are greatness. Oh and the History channel. That’s all I have really allowed myself to watch.

On another note, during my creativity times this week I managed to get some fabric cut for a brown and pink quilt I am working on. My beautiful Aunt Linda has challenged me to see who can finish it first. I discovered that I suck at pinwheels. Completely suck at them which is unfortunate because this entire quilt is made of pinwheels. But seeing as I am not a quitter I will take this challenge and be a perfect pinwheel maker when I am done! People will come from far and wide to see my pinwheels and stand in awe of their beauty.

I guess considering I am not a traditional quilter this is not a bad start. Very sloppy work and my measurements are off. I will try again tonight. Below is what I typically like to do. I don’t need measurements for that! If I mess up I can say “It was meant to look like that! Are you questioning an artist?? What is wrong with you?” 🙂

 Made Swiss Quiche tonight and it smells good. Gotta go make the salad to go with it. It’s raining out so it will be the perfect night to hole up in my sewing room and practice my pinwheels!

Creativity wherefore art thou?

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Okay, it’s been a while. Sophie and I have just come back from a very inspiring, much needed vacation. I think it’s true that we all get caught up in the mundane routine of our lives and sometimes just don’t care enough to do anything about it. Some people might even find that very soothing. Living every day as the day before it and the day before that one. I can’t. I feel like I have been caught in the same cycle for the past 2 or 3 years. Work, church, choir, bed. Every day. Ugh. I do enjoy going to church and taking Sophie to choir. It’s just that I feel like every day another inch of me turns gray. Does that make sense? Like visually an inch of my skin or hair or clothes turn gray. SOOoooo, I decided to shake things up a bit in my world and do something creative for AT LEAST 30 minutes a day. At least. Maybe some of my color will start growing back.

While on vacation my Aunt and I started a cute little owl wall hanging.

 Oh my gosh they are SO cute!! Fun to make too. So that stirred some juices. I think I came home with a total of 8 projects in my suitcase. Of course then that inspired me to finish setting up my sewing room (come on…do we really ever finish setting up a sewing room?). A very close friend of mine gave me her grandmother’s kitchen table and 2 chairs and I moved those in there and put all my pretty fabric away. So now I have a sewing table, a cutting table, 3 bookshelves, a sleeper sofa and the table and chairs that you can sit at and look through quilt books, scrapbook, play a game of chess, do a school project, lay out designs…oh the possibilities!! It’s wonderful!! It’s cozy yet there is still enough room to get up and walk around and pull out my ironing board for projects. It is my very own happy spot and the room is yellow so you can’t help but be happy 🙂

I can’t wait to get in there this weekend and see what I can do! I plan on working on that and painting my bedroom this weekend. Someone should come over and do my yardwork for me…yes, that’s a hint. My dear friend who gave me her grandmother’s table said “You should really fire your gardener.” Haha! Yes, it’s that bad. I keep hoping some nice neighbor kid will come by and ask to mow my yard but now I’m afraid it’s past the point of intimidation and now just looks like really hard work and who wants to mow THAT in 103 degree weather? Back to my happy spot…

Total Randomness

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     It’s been one of those days. You know the kind. The cold weather and the warm sun bring a little bounce to my step. I love this time of year! Although I think the wind might have loosened up a couple of brain cells because I am off just a little bit today. NO, I am NOT off a little everday but thank you for asking. 

I was noticing that my ankles are quite boney today and have decided that due to the boney ankles losing weight this coming year will not be on my resolution list. I feel like the losing of weight might accent the boney ankles. So that’s that. Now I can focus on more important things like finding the best flavor at Pacciugo’s.

Today my friend Sandy and I went to Chick-Fil-a and I asked for frenchies instead of fries because I couldn’t remember the word “fry”.

Sophie has her first “concert” tonight. If you can call standing outside in the freezing cold in the middle of a tiny downtown tree-lighting ceremony with 13 of the 60 kids in her choir a concert… Her first real concert is on Monday the 8th. They sound great so it should be fun 🙂 Not that it wouldn’t be fun if it wasn’t great but I’m just saying.

I picked up a book called Encountering the New Testament: A Historical and Theological Survey this week. I started reading it a couple of nights ago and it is really interesting! I can’t wait to dive into it. Lately I really feel like He is carrying me around in the palm of His hand. That sounds weird…what I mean is there a trials in my life right now and I have given all my worries to Him and He is totally giving me the hook up! For the first time I really feel at peace with my situation and I know that no matter what it’s taken care of. I’m not in denial or anything – I am just not stressed out about it. Anyways that’s just cool.

I really have to get back to work – my lunch is long over.