Monday, January 31, 2011

Shop Update...

Just look at that face...have I told you that I looooooooovvvvvveeeeee my new camera? Well, I do! But I think the boys are getting tired of me snapping away like the paparazzi...
I finally got around to adding a few memory albums/journals to my shop.
They're very similar to the ones featured in a few of the Sew Somerset magazines. I'm hoping to get a few other things out there to spruce up my hum-drum ol' shop (including my He Said/She Said album that a few of you have been asking about).

Sunday, January 30, 2011

My Work Space...

When Shelby left for college in 2009 I half-heartedly turned her bedroom into my "studio". I say "half-heartedly" because she's a clothes-horse so had to leave many of her clothes behind, she swaps them out occasionally when the seasons change. Because of this I left all her clothes, shoes, purses, etc. in her closet and some of her other belongings in various parts of the room and boy was it crowded so trying to be creative was a challenge.
As a junior, she is no longer required to live in the dorms so she and four other girls signed a lease on a house and will move in June 1, 2011....I know, I know, I always make a short story anyway, when she was home over Winter Break she reminded me several times that this would officially be the last time EVER that she "lived" in this house. Nothing like throwing salt in the wound, huh...little brat.
But I got the last laugh...when she went back to school last Saturday she was barely down the driveway before I was throwing the last of her stuff in the basement. Now the room is utterly and completely MINE! I moved my sewing machine and table in the closet along with all my fabric to make room for my big work table.
And I organized and organized and organized! (we'll see how long I stay organized). I don't know about you girls but I am in love with my space. Sometimes I walk in here just to look at all my junk...and I actually love being in here so much I took a nap on the floor yesterday afternoon!
I suppose Shelby won't even find out about this little turn of events until June when she begs us to help her move into her house!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sweetheart Giveaway!

So this is what I did to display the bulk of my vintage Valentine collection. I strung up some twine and hung them all in a row with little clothes pins. And since it's hanging from the archway between my entryway and kitchen I stung them on both sides...this is the view from the kitchen,
and this is the view from the front door.
And the rest are strewn about on tables all over the house.
And now for the giveaway...I will choose a person at random to receive:
1. 5 unused vintage valentines
2. Vintage pink velvet millinery
3. 40 Piece pack of vintage ephemera that's currently for sale in my Etsy shop
4. 4 of my Tiny Books (also available in my Etsy shop)
There are two ways to enter the drawing...The first way is to leave a comment on this post telling me how you discovered my blog.
The second way to enter is to mention my giveaway on your blog. Just send me an email or leave another comment giving me your blog address.
I will draw one winner at random on Sunday, February 6th so I'll have time to get your valentine-y package sent to you in time for Valentine's Day.
Thank you for playing along!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

It's Valen-time...

Well...I think it's close enough to Valentine's Day to get out all of my lovely vintage collection keeps growing and growing. Even when I tell myself that I have enough I can't stop buying them...they are just so CUTE! (My favorites are the glossy German ones from the '20's)
My collection has gotten so big that I don't have room to display them all, so shamefully they sit in a big stack on a table where they get neglected. But, I have an idea how to display them so I can look at them all the time (at least until Feb 15th)...I'll post pictures when I'm done so you can look at them too!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Cupcakes and Strep Throat...

I was home yesterday with Sebastian while we were nursing his strep throat so I thought I'd make him some Banana Pecan Cupcakes (although they're really more like banana bread muffins!) And of course, I took the photo with my fab camera after I figured out how to disable the flash...

Monday, January 24, 2011

First Pictures... I read about the first 30 pages of my fabulous camera's 700 page manual. I wanted to get most of the basics down so I didn't ruin anything (I have to admit the beast scared me to death at first) but then I got a little antsy and had to start clicking away. I still have a lot of reading to do (cuz I don't even know how to turn the flash off!) but here's what I shot so far...gol darn-it that's a nice camera!

Tom's waiting for my buyer's remorse to set it ALWAYS does (I hate to say it but I do have 14 days to return it if I change my mind). Do I really need this much camera?

If anyone out there is a crappy amatuer photographer (like me) and bought a crazy-expensive camera I'd like to hear about it!

Ok...I'm off to figure out how to turn the flash off!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

And the winner is....

...the Canon 60D. After weeks of research I finally settled on this little beauty!

I volleyed back and forth between the Nikon d90 and this one...and based on the hundreds of reviews I read (ok, I'm exaggerating a bit) this one is a better camera.

I can't use it yet as the battery is still charging and I have to read the 700 page manual so I don't break anything but I'm excited to get started...hopefully you'll see the results soon!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Happy Saturday...

I got this little treasure at a flea market last summer (a distant memory here in MN with 45.3" of snow so far and more expected on Monday.) I swear it had two drawers but we can't seem to find the's probably out in the garage...but who wants to hang out in there looking for a drawer when it's only 7 degrees?

So, since I'm redecorating the entire house I thought I'd bring it in, clean it up a little and start using it.

I'm getting closer to choosing a camera, I'm pretty sure I know which one I want, thanks to my good friend Krissie, who is an expert photographer, I think I have it narrowed down. I'm going to buy it from an online store Krissie uses quite often because their prices are so good but I want to physically hold it in my hand and test it out before I spend all that money on a camera. That'll be another thing I can cross off my list!

Tom and I are off to do some estate sale-ing. I hope you have a Happy Saturday (and I hope I find some good treasures at the estate sales!)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Trash to Treasure Tuesday...

Before.... After....
Shelby already staked her claim...she can have fun filling it up with little trinkets!

Monday, January 10, 2011

How About This for a Change? my "adventuresome-ness" continues (can you tell how proud I am of myself?) Not only did I paint a crazy family tree chalkboard on the wall and buy a chandelier but I changed my mantel after EIGHT YEARS (yes, it's been pretty much the same for 8 years) soon as the Christmas decorations came down, this went up...
I had this little banner thingy on another wall but hung it on the hooks that held the Christmas stockings and decided I like the way it looks...
and then I put some of my books that have been published on the mantel along with...
this odd little mouse...
...and lots of mirrors. Now...if only I had that fancy new camera perhaps this picture would show you truly how nice everything looks up there,
but it's sortof hazy and out of focus huh? Oh well, I've started doing some research on fancy digital cameras...I know I want either a Nikon or Canon and I need one that will work well for the photographically challenged so if anyone wants to throw some suggestions my way I'm all ears!
And thanks to all the well wishes I've received for my father, I'm happy to report he's doing amazingly well. They finally took him off the oxygen, he's breathing solely on his own now and he's able to sit in his wheelchair for a few hours each day. He begins a physical therapy type workout tomorrow to build up his strength in the hopes he'll be able to transfer on his own at the end of January when they do a final skin graft (sp?) If he can successfully transfer from bed to chair and visa versa they'll discharge him and he'll be back home (and hopefully less ornery than he's been while in the hospital!)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Shabby Chandelier...

Here is the lovely vintage tole chandelier I bought from this store on Ebay. I'm excited to get it re-wired and hung over the kitchen table. Tom's going to attempt to do it himself (the re-wiring) but I'm not very optimistic simply because the wires go into each arm and I'm not sure he can figure that part out...he's surprised me before so we'll just have to see (he loves
Do you think I can convince him to get started on it today while he's watching football?

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Off to a good start...

I don't really make new year's "resolutions" but I told myself in 2011 I was going to start doing all the things I've been "scared" to do. No, not skydiving and insane stuff like that, I'm talking more about being "risky" (by my definition) with decorating and remodeling and spending money! We have this huge wall in our family room...we've lived here for almost 8 years and I've never known what the hec to do with this wall. So on New Year's day I just started painting and repainting and painting again to make this chalkboard type "Family Tree".

(eeegads, that lamp definitely needs to be replaced!) I'm lucky enough to have some really great old family great-grandmother Alice is the one with the fantastic ostrich-feather hat (front and center) and Tom's grandmother Stella's photograph is stunning (top left) photography (as usual) is not great so you probably can't tell but boy-oh-boy do Tom and I come from good-looking families! So naturally I wanted to hang these treasures where everyone can see them but didn't want to put them in boring frames. (I also hung Tom's grandfather's Marine Corp dog tags and my father's Navy dog tags on the "tree").I wasn't really sure what I wanted for the final outcome so I just kept on painting, decopaging french dictionary scallops, and repainting until I came up with something both Tom and I thought looked good. I have to admit, it was scary because this really isn't the type of thing I do to a wall but I like the way it turned out. (And I really need to get a picture of Elsie up there!)

So, here's what else is on the list of things to do in 2011:

1. replace living room carpeting with good old fashioned oak hardwood flooring to match the kitchen and entryway.

2. Put in a vintage farmhouse sink (and I know I might have to replace the cabinetry to get this done...yikes!)

3. Redo the shower and flooring in the master bath

4. Redo of Shelby's bath...I want to put in wainscotting, brick-type flooring and a good ol' fashioned pedestal sink.

5. Hang a vintage chandelier in the dining area (I already bought it! and good Lord, biting the bullet on that one nearly gave me a heart-attack...and it was barely over $100...see what a chicken I am?)

6. Take Piano lessons with Sebastian (after I FINALLY get the darn thing tuned)

7. Buy a new GOOD camera and get my friend Krissie to give me some quick and dirty photography lessons

8. New landscaping in the front of the house (my friend Val will help me with this one!) Of course we have to wait until our 15 feet of snow melts sometime in May!

Ok...I have 11 1/2 months...I'd better get moving!

And last but not middle child turned 18 on the 6th (the Epiphany)...Happy Birthday Matty. What a bitter-sweet day that was...These are the moments that I thank God for Sebastian coming along most unexpectedly...I don't know what I would do if I were an "empty-nester" come September!

Hope everyone's 2011 is off to a great start!