Tuesday, December 20, 2011

My Birthday Girl!

Today I drove around and around the parking lot at the mall (5 days before Christmas!) looking for a place to park. I then stood in a very long line to the dressing rooms at H&M...twice! And finally waited in another long line to pay (too much!). Every moment was not just bearable, but joyous because of the reason I was there and the company I was with. My beautiful, sweet daughter Clare turned 12 today and she wanted to go shopping with me. It was the perfect day!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

A Very Good Reason to Make More Pillows!

I got a new couch! And if that isn't exciting enough, I get to make new pillows for my new couch! Happy crafting days are here again! I went over to "Calico Corners" and made the girl cut me a swatch of just about every fabric I even remotely liked. I'm in love with the leopard print and especially love the way it looks with the Union Jack pillow I got for my birthday. If you have any other fabric suggestions I would love hear from you!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

That's a Nice Pear...

I'm a bad blogger! I have been very uninspired and it shows! Add to that a broken computer, a very sloooow net book and a new iPad (not very blogger friendly) and you have the perfect storm of bad blogging! To all of my 26 followers, I'm sorry! We finally got a new family computer and I will do my very best to be inspired and inspiring. Thanks for hanging in there with me! Meanwhile I have noticed a theme in some of my Goodwill finds of late...Pears. I found the print about a year ago and blogged about it here. The silver pear came later and the studded bronze I picked up the other day. I saved the print for myself but the other 2 went to a good home, a client of mine who has a son named Per! She will love them more then I ever could!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Happy Birthday 54!

This post is not about football. It's about time, and how quickly it passes when you are busy just living your life. My son Joe is my youngest, and he is 10 years old today. It's cliche to say, that it seems like just yesterday that he was born, but there is a good reason this is said so often that it has become cliche: it really does seem like yesterday, ok, maybe last week. Either way, the time that I have had the privilege of being Joe's Mom has been fast and sweet. From diapers to plastic dinosaurs from learning to read to learning guitar, from Duplo to Lego, to playing football, watching the ever changing milestones come and go over the years has been in fast forward. I do have a few more years of molding and shaping him into an adult, and he will always be my baby, but sometimes I wish I could rewind or at least push pause now and then. I guess the lesson is another cliche, to enjoy every second your children are little, and I pledge to do just that today, on Joe's 10th birthday.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Good Olden Days

When I was about 10 years old I had a huge crush on a girl. Her name was Laura Ingalls Wilder and she lived 100 years ago. I loved every thing about her. Her home made clothes, her makeshift toys, her little log cabin in the big woods, her sod house on the banks of Plum Creek, her little dog Jack and even (or maybe especially) her meager Christmas presents delivered by Mr. Edwards from Santa Clause. She had a life full of adventure and simplicity that I coveted as much as 10 year old's today pine for an iPhone or a Facebook account. It seems I was not alone.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

30. Years. Ago.

When I was a kid I wanted to be an artist. I had been considered "artistic" most of my life, hanging out in my room for hours drawing, walking over to J.K.Gill to admire the art supplies and watching over my mothers creative and talented shoulders as she sketched and painted. Art was something I loved to do, it gave me a place in the world and it began to define me. Being artistic is good cover if you are a shy, introverted, young girl, believe me! Quite possibly, the best artistic experience I have had in my life, and certainly the most fun was when I was in High School in a class called "Art Staff". Not just anyone could sign up for this class, portfolios were submitted and there was a selection process. I'm not sure how I pulled it off but at the time I actually had a "cool" friend who wanted to try out with me. She was beautiful, popular and could really draw. We both wanted to be in this elite group, we both entered our portfolios, we both waited for our acceptance letters, I got mine. I was sad for her but she was happy for me, these were really more my people then hers. To be in this class meant we were in charge of making banners for school events, designing and painting murals in the school hallways (I wonder if they are still there!!) and silk screening t-shirts and posters. It was fun, creative and sometimes hard work. I loved it! I have great memories of my 2 years on "Art Staff", but what I remember most is the feeling I got being a part of this class, of this very talented group of fellow artists, I felt like I belonged there, and it's part of what got me to where I am now. I know some of my fellow "Art Staffers" went on to careers in the art world, and I would like to think that my many years as a hairdresser, and my fewer years as a blogger, could be considered "art" as well!

Friday, August 5, 2011

A Mini Make-Over!

When school lets out and summer begins, I am always excited to spend lazy days with my children, going to the library, strolling to the store for fresh fruit and spending cool summer nights on the back deck with my wonderful husband, sipping margaritas. Ha! About 2 days in, I am racing off to work leaving a list of chores for my kids, while trying to figure out how I'm going to keep one of them occupied while the other is at camp, then coming home to discover that the library books are over due and I forgot to take anything out of the freezer for dinner! I love summer but summer is certainly not easier! My point is this: I have had very little time to work on any projects, visit Goodwill or blog about it! I did do a mini-make over on this college bound little dresser a few weeks ago. It was languishing in a spare bedroom at our lake house, getting little or no use. When my son moved to a smaller place I decided this could be the new home for this compact gem. My son is fairly immune to my many attempts at transforming cast off second hand furniture, so when I asked him how he would like me to overhaul this, and keeping in mind that it would likely end up stashed in a closet, he said it was up to me. So I pondered, and sanded, and pondered and primed and then just pondered. After being completely uninspired by anything I came up with, I decided to do a much smaller version of another dresser I had transformed. Can you steal an idea from yourself?

Monday, July 11, 2011

Home Sweet Home...from College!

I have a relatively small kitchen, 2 maybe 3 people at a time can cook, do dishes or fix a plate of food. Tonight there were 5. Five people all trying to fit into 1 small space, throwing elbows, and getting in each others way. It was so crowded I could have reached out my arms and circled them all at one time. It was chaos, and it was wonderful!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Biggest Dresser Challenge Ever!

I have had this ugly little dresser for a long time, acting as a night stand in a bedroom at our lake cottage. I never really liked it, and no one ever used it, so I am finding it a new home. My oldest son recently moved from a rented house to a small quad where he has less room to spread out, but a greater opportunity for efficiency. (That's a nice way of saying: he has a much smaller place and so needs to be better organized!!) This little dresser will end up in a closet so it doesn't need to be too amazing, but I want to take the ugly out of it before I hand it over!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

I Heart the Library!!

I went to the library with my kids today and picked up this book. I'd seen it referenced on another blog and was inspired enough to put it on hold at my local library. It features eclectic design in relaxed settings with really beautiful photos. I've been in a design rut lately and could use a little creative kick start!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Hay There!

I've been working on my free chairs and when I took them apart I found the seat cushions were padded with hay! It's a little creepy! Needless to say I will be using nice, new, clean chair padding when I put them back together!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

A bird in the hand...

I found yet another reason to haul out my new sewing machine. Yay! While at the Goodwill a while back, my sister found this needle point wall hanging and commented that it would make a great pillow. That was all I needed to hear! At the time I was looking for any excuse to sew more stuff! Because the needle point is so old fashioned and quaint I wanted the back fabric to be more modern and graphic. I like the contrast and that it's reversible. I just wish I had added some pink trim or tassels...maybe next time!!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

"A Suppososedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again"

On a beautiful sunny Saturday afternoon my sister Mary and I headed down to Eugene to fulfill an almost life long fantasy of attending the "Antiques Roadshow" We had our soon-to-be-appraised-for-thousands-of-dollars, treasures with us, a reservation at "The Red Lion", where we were certain we would be rubbing elbows with the likes of the fabulous Keno brothers, and our 2 golden tickets, ensuring our entry into the land of surprisingly valuable antiquities. Our first stop was the hotel, where we checked in and checked out our room, not bad, not the "W" but not bad. We changed our clothes, freshened up our makeup (for the TV cameras of course) and after a few confusing GPS instructions, we found our selves at the "Lane Events Center" where we were herded into a line with a thousand other lucky ticket holders. We were finally at the Roadshow!!! The line was long, really long, but we happily shuffled our way through it joking with the folks around us about where we could get a "Fast Pass" Ha-ha! (google it) My sister is a very friendly, funny person, and a talker, and we got to know pretty much everyone in that line and the treasures they were carting around that huge convention hall. We met some really great people and had we known that this would likely be the best part of our "Roadshow" experience we would have enjoyed it even more. One line led to another and after what seemed like a very long time we were standing in front of our first appraiser. He was a big sweaty man whom we recognized from the show, and he told us, with out much interest, that the little silver pitcher we placed in front of him was, other then sentimental value, pretty much worthless. Ouch! We held our heads high and drug ourselves over to the next line and waited. We waited amongst, photo albums, baby cribs and a human sized model of the alien from "Alien." Every one had a story and because my sister is not just a good talker but a great listener too, we happily heard most of them. As we finally approached the head of this line we could tell that the mood in the hall was starting to change, we were some of the few people left and the cameras had all been shut down. Suddenly there were no more lines. and the appraisers who's own long lines had tricked down to nothing were hitting the floor to finish up with the rest of us. It felt as if they wanted to get us the hell out of there and go rest there big sweaty heads in their big sweaty hotel rooms. Another familiar faced appraiser quickly looked over 2 of our items, assigned them a moderate value and handed us off to someone else. Enter big sweaty appraiser number 2. He looked at our sweet little woven Indian baskets like they were turds and that he had been looking at turds all day long. Didn't he know we had been standing in line for 3 hours waiting for his sage expertise? He gave us the brush off and with a wave of his sweat mopping handkerchief sent us on our way, out to the parking lot to pack up our junk with the rest of the late entry losers. The trick we learned, was, the earlier the better to the roadshow. After turning down an opportunity to share a beer with some of our fellow "line mates" (OK, by then we were running away from them) we headed out to dinner with my oldest son who lives in Eugene and then back to our hotel room, that was beginning to look more like the "W" after our long day. Some of the most hilarious, absurd, crazy moments of my life I have shared with my sister, I would go any where with her and do just about anything. She makes everything more funner, even the #@!!* "Antiques Roadshow."

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Gum-Drop Pillow: Part Deux!

After multiple trips to "Jo-Ann's" to buy ..."just 1 more box"... of fiber-fill, I have finished my second Gum-drop pillow! I bought 1 yard of this grey ikat from West Elm, and that was all it took, barely a scrap left over! I stuffed, and stuffed, and stuffed it full with 3+ boxes of fiber-fill and then sewed it up, all the while trying to contain all that stuffing! What a job that was!! I love how it turned out and it fits into my living room perfectly...and I finally got to take my new sewing machine out of the box!

Thursday, May 26, 2011


I hit up the "Goodwill" yesterday with my sister. That is always a fun time! We stroll down the isles cracking each other up with the random things we see, and then find the most outrages, dated and crazy clothes to show each other! It's so fun! Mary is a "Goodwill" Pro! She goes for the clothes (she owns a clothing resell shop) and I gravitate towards furniture, so we don't compete. Later that night I talked to her and asked what she did with the rest of her day and she said "went to another Goodwill!!" What a life! Oh...and I got this great stuffed camel...totally random!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Post-College Working Girl Rules!

Hustle on over to Evie's Blog to win this lovely scarf:
Post-College Working Girl
...but if you win, you have to let me borrow it!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Visions of Gumdrops...

I finally decided what to do with this lovely grey ikat fabric I got from West Elm. Here is a clue!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

We're Goin' to the Roadshow Y'all!!

Ok, they're not tickets to Oprahs last show, but I am still super excited!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Ode to My Mentors

My Grandmother made this patchwork dog, out of scrap yarn no doubt! My Mom hand sawed 2 pieces of plywood to create this perfect sun burst mirror! I am the proud owner of both these treasures!

On this Mothers Day I would like to pay tribute to a couple of my crafty mentors: My Grandma Reta B and my amazing Mother, Christie. My grandmother was literally a pioneer. She grew up in the country and while sitting in a horse drawn wagon, taught herself how to knit with an old scrap of red yarn. Some 60 years later she taught me to knit. She crocheted over 100 afghans in her life and I still have the 1 she made me. She taught me how to use a thimble and she had a large collection of them that I inherited from her along with bags of yarn and half done projects. She and I had a somewhat unsuccessful attempt at learning tole painting...but we tried!! She was the original DIYer not just out of fun or hobby but out of necessity and the need to preserve the craft. I often wonder what she would think of me now and what I have done with the skills she passed on to me. And then there is my truly amazing mother. When she was 18 and her and my Dad were newly married, their first home together was on an Air Force Base. Their base housing was without a fireplace, so for Christmas she made one out of cardboard. She painted it like brick and hung their homemade stockings from it. She has sew everything from bibs and pajamas to matching dresses and Halloween costumes galore. She can slipcover anything! For several years she made our holiday cards, lining us 5 kids up on the couch for a photo she would take and frame beautifully with construction paper, every one done by hand. Our parents built us a Barbie penthouse one Christmas and my Mom decorated every room perfectly, framing our tiny school photos and hanging them there so we could pretend that we were Barbies pals. She can paint and draw beautifully, use a miter box, work a jigsaw, hang wallpaper, do stained glass, and one summer she painted the entire outside of our 3 story house using just an extension ladder and a brush. If the whole diy-home improvement-blogging world existed back then she would have ruled it. Only she would not have had time because she was too busy being creative to brag about it. My grandma Reta B and my beautiful Mother Christie are my crafting idols. They were crafty before crafty was cool, and they taught me everything I know!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Still Bummed!

I rearranged my living room the other day.

It is sometimes easier to clean if I move everything around.
These matching bookshelves ended up on either side of my television.

This one holds my complete collection of the now defunct
but once pioneering design magazine, "Domino".

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


A good friend of mine is reading this book by Ayaan Hirsi Ali. She says it is really good and it has a foreword written by Christopher Hitchens. Sold. I ordered a copy from Amazon, got it yesterday and started it last night. Hitchens foreword is brilliant of course, I'll let you know about the rest.

Monday, April 25, 2011

You had me at "Free"

I was driving back from Target the other evening, making my way up a steep, winding hill on my way home, when I spotted a grouping of chairs set on the side of the road. There was a home made sign taped to them...."Free" it said, and I drove on. "I have too much on my plate right now" I said to my self. "I don't have time for another project" I reasoned. "I already have way too many chairs" I muttered. But before I could say "hand sander" or "staple gun" and before I really knew what I was doing, I had whipped that truck around and headed back down the hill. Yes, I said truck, I had left my own beautiful car at home and just happen to be driving the old truck we keep for hauling stuff and for loaning to friends who are moving. Those chairs were meant to be mine, they were just waiting for me and my truck to roll by and take them home. They are sturdy, made of solid, hard wood and the removable seats are just begging for an infusion of lovely fabric. I could not leave them behind. I threw them in to the back of the truck and was on my way, up the road to yet another chair project! The gods of free stuff were smiling on me that day.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Do It!

I believe this with all my heart!

Thank you for reminding me Honeycomb Print Shop

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Major Blog Love!

The most amazing thing I have discovered while blogging is the wonderful community of generous and thoughtful folks I am now a part of. I am truly honored to be considered among this talented bunch I have gotten to know through this blog. One such lovely lady is the one behind the blog "Of Peacocks and Paisleys". She opened up her beautiful blog to showcase my homes entry way. I am so flattered! Thank You Gagan!

Monday, April 4, 2011

LinkWithin Love

I ordered 1 yard of this lovely grey ikat from west elm. I'm not at all sure what I'm going to do with it but I love how it is used here:

Since I only bought 1 yard I will likely bust out my new sewing machine and make a pillow or 2...or I could turn to my tried and true, girls best friend-staple gun and transform a chair seat into a work of art...or sell some of my stock in fiberfill and make another pouf! The possibilities are endless!!