Friday, March 2, 2018

Hoarding

I realized this morning that I may be a hoarder.  Since we had a lovely Spring snowstorm yesterday, 
(I think it looks like about 8" out there! Happy Spring!) I decided I would do some cleaning and organizing  and try to avoid looking out side until the snow has melted.  I changed the sheets on our bed and then realized what a terrible mess the basket of pillow cases was and decided to iron and sort them.  I take out the ones that have developed holes or that need a good soak but I really wanted to get rid of some that I know I don't use.  As I ironed I remembered a drawer in my bedroom that had some cases in and dug those out. And it was then that I realized I might be a hoarder.  I've been collecting these most of my married life.  They were found at yard and estate sales for pennies. Some were horribly stained and so cheap it was worth the effort to try to whiten them up again.  
 Others were just fine, never used because the previous owners didn't want to ruin them or didn't like them.   For future reference I have found many vintage linens stained brown from years of use and a good soak in BIZ (the powder, not the liquid) takes that brown stain right out.   Sometimes there is only one of the set but I find them very easy to mix and match.
At any rate, it's time to stop collecting.  I actually have a dresser in my bedroom that is filled with nothing but vintage linens. Embroidered dish towels, linen towels, and vintage trims.  There are also several baskets squirreled on shelves, (there might be more in bins in the basement,cough cough.)
37 years of collecting will sneak up on you and it is clearly time to sell, give away and donate.  I need to let go for my own sanity. The cases shown here are just the tip of the iceberg I assure you. A very small tip on a rather large iceberg.
I also wanted to tell you, I went to Hobby Lobby last week to look for some pillow covers for the living room.  Now that everything is creamy white I need some colorful accents!  I found some great deals on pillow covers.  I made the the black ticking striped pillow cover below, but the floral cover came from Hobby Lobby and was marked down to $3.75.   The flowers are embroidered so it even has a little texture.  This is my new swivel/ rocker/ recliner that I got to rock my darling grand baby in. :)
I could just eat her up I love her so.  She is 3 months old and it has possibly been the happiest 3 months of my dog gone life.  We all love her to the moon and back, and her Aunt Lauren is flying in next weekend from PA just to hold her for the weekend.  Those cheeks...like butter.
 Now where was I? Oh yes, the pillow deals.  I got the black and cream damask print covers below, for $2 each!  I couldn't buy the zipper OR the fabric to make my own for that price, and they are really great quality, with hidden zippers and sturdy fabric.  At those prices I can afford to change the pillows up whenever I want to. I'll be checking back each season for more.
That's about all there is to catch up on.  The thrill of getting my linen closet in order, snuggling baby, (which IS a thrill!) discount pillow covers, and waiting for the snow to melt.  It's just a matter of time now. I feel like Spring is really here, and you KNOW how I love Spring :)  

Monday, February 12, 2018

The Slipcover


I am finally posting the love seat slip cover I finished last week.  This is the first time I have attempted a slip cover and although it isn't perfect, I am pretty happy with it.  I am especially happy that the project is over!

I will say, getting it done entailed a great deal of pacing, stress eating, procrastination and anxiety.  Just because I attempt these big projects does not mean I am filled with confidence.   I have learned to do things scared.  But it isn't easy!  I took small bites, and it helped that the door behind the love seat holds my sewing / craft room so it was close to the machine.   The next thing I need to find is a more colorful oriental rug.  I bought this beige one after putting in the wood floors. I thought it would be a good neutral.  After this project I am at my neutral limit.  I also pretty much hate this rug now, so the search is on.
I decided to go neutral with the furniture so I could change the accessories and pillow colors with the season. I am notoriously fickle when it comes to decorating. I like so many styles and colors. I need something I can change easily.  These green pillow covers are feeding my need for green right now, (we just got a foot of snow this past weekend!) but I plan to add some more bright colors for Spring.

 This is a corner of the other side of the room.  We found the library table at a yard sale and it was piled with old clothes.  Earl asked if it was for sale and they showed us the $90 price tag and then offered it to us for $75. I couldn't get it to the car fast enough.  It is in perfect condition, and came with a glass top. I have always loved these things and this one has some really pretty details.

The sign was made by my youngest daughter for me for Christmas a few years ago, I love it! And the Boston fern came in from the porch when it got cold outside.  It is a very messy plant, but I am so glad I have this lush green fern inside for the winter!  This time of year I need real, live, green things.
The fluffy furry pillow covers and pom pom throw were Christmas gifts from my girls this year and they are so soft and fun, but they are about to get packed away for some fresh Spring covers.  I'll look forward to getting them out again and enjoying the softness and texture they bring to the living room again next winter.

The curtains are tablecloths I ordered online and used clips to hang them. They are actually the perfect length for curtains right out of the package and add a nice shot of intense color.  And since I didn't spend a fortune on them (about $12!) I won't feel bad if I change them out later for something  else.  I did tell you I am fickle when it comes to decorating right?

I hope you are all having a great Valentines week.  Do you know this February marks my 11th year blogging?  I can't believe I have lasted that long!  A big thank you to all of you who have visited an commented, many of you have been friends for the entire 11 years and I treasure those friendships and the encouragement I have found here so much!  Thank you for hanging with me and giving me love, encouragement and support all these years. It means so much. 💖💖💖

Happy Valentines Day to you all!

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Procrastination, Projects and Recipes

Warning! Granny update! My darling granddaughter just turned two months old this week and it called for photos, as you may imagine.  I am sure she is developing wrist rolls to go with her thigh rolls and I couldn't be more pleased. I found this adorable outfit at Target (maybe they should start sponsoring me?) and I had to have it,  Isn't dressing little girls fun? Shameless grandmother share complete. 💖
This week I began the dreaded slipcover project that I have been planning for the last year.  When it comes to things I don't want to do I tend to procrastinate. As in, sit on the sofa binge watching Netflix, or doing ANYTHING except the thing I do not want to do, while I think about the intricacies of whatever project I am dreading. Sometimes there is coffee and chocolate, it helps me think.  At any rate, being the frugal person that I am, and having a perfectly comfortable but hideous piece of furniture that hurts my eyes every time I see it, I decided that I would slipcover it.  If Miss Mustard Seed can do it so can I right? I mean, LOTS of people slipcover their furniture and I can sew and I am sure I can do this. I don't want to, but I can.
Attempts to camouflage the red plaid love seat were not successful.
So armed with 12 yards of creamy denim, I began.  I am starting with the cushions because that seemed like the obvious place to begin. Results were not as planned.
The cover is obviously too loose and I shudder at the thought of ripping it apart to redo it but that is what will happen, because I want to like this piece of furniture when I am done with this heinous task.  Updates as I slog my way through this.

Recipes

Just like many of you I have been trying to change to a more healthy way of eating.  It's back to (mostly) low carb. I say mostly because, darn it, I am so tired of giving up EVERYTHING, following stringent eating plans for a while and then falling off the wagon.  I just can't do that any more.  I have a problem with sugar. Once I start I can't stop, and I have found that eating low carb / high fat fixes that for me.  I am not as hungry, I slowly lose weight and I feel more satisfied.  So what I do is eat low carb high fat for breakfast and lunch and then I make a healthy meal for the hubs and I for dinner.  If we are going out, I'm not going to sweat it.  If this is something I am going to do long term it has to be something that is not so stringent that I can never have a food group again. That's just silly and it doesn't work for me.

 At any rate, Pinterest has been my friend and I have been making soups, and one pan meals that are delicious and good for me.  One of those is Spanish Chicken with Chorizo and Potatoes  I will warn you, I have had chorizo before and it tastes fine, but I actually read the ingredients at the store when I went to get some this time and it's not pretty.  If you want to use chorizo, DO NOT READ THE INGREDIENTS. I just made it impossible not to look didn't I? I'll tell you, chorizo is made with pig snouts. 😝  I used regular old pork sausage in mine and it was still fabulous.  This makes a huge batch, but I happened to have a friend who had just gone through surgery so I split the recipe and gave her half. Perfect.  Add some steamed green beans and you will be in hog heaven.  This is super easy and delicious.  I am also loving Mediterranean Baked Chicken , and Tortellini Soup with Italian Sausage and SpinachThe soup is so delicious it has become a staple at many of my friends homes too.

This slipcovering project may actually get me blogging again. I suddenly felt the need to write a post rather than sew.  What makes you procrastinate?

Monday, January 15, 2018

Well Hello There!

Bad blogger.  That is all I can say. After almost 11 years of blogging I hit the wall, nothing there, no inspiration, no ambition, and apparently no posts.  Of course I had some extenuating circumstances too.

So where did we leave off?  Oh yes, the trip to Petoskey. So much fun.  And then of course it was Autumn and we played in the garden a bit.
And then it got cold and blustery and snow fell.
And then it was Thanksgiving and we had most of the family at our house for dinner.  But first, Thanksgiving morning, this little peanut came into the world.
Clara Grace, 7 lbs. 6 ounces of the sweetest baby girl in the world. Well at least to us.  You can see bliss all over my face as I cuddle that sleepy baby.  She is everything, and I just can't get enough.

Well, you can see how I might have been distracted from blogging for a while right?  I mean, babies need to be cuddled, a lot, and preferably by grandparents as often as possible.

Earl is head over heels in love too.
And she has already grown so fast! Barely 6 weeks old and she went from this to....

 this.

And now she's cooing and smiling, oh she's the smilingest baby you ever did see! I have to hold her at least once a week or I go into withdrawal. 

So that catches you up.  This is where I have been and where I will, no doubt, continue to be.  The future of the blog is in question because I don't want to completely overwhelm you with my grandchild photos, I know they don't hold the same magic for you that they do for me.  And also, because for some reason, blogger keeps locking me out and I keep having to change the password to get back in.  If I disappear completely it will be because blogger once and for all shut me out.

 I am going to try to get back in the groove, but things change you know? I've been a total lazy bum in getting caught up on my friends posts because...Clara. What can I say?

Also, December was packed, I hosted a Women's Ministries dinner the first weekend of December, The second weekend was my brother's wedding, and then my darling daughter and her handsome hubby came and stayed with us for the week of Christmas.  They live in Pennsylvania and hadn't been home for Christmas in 5 years!
  Needless to say, that was all I needed under the tree. :)

My goal for this week is to overhaul the old blog, it's looking dated and sad,  get a new post out at least once a week, and to decorate cookies with Clara's mom Thursday, which I know will turn into play with Clara time and cookies may be eaten plain while we gaze into those bright blue eyes.

One does what one must.  If you want to be updated more regularly, come on over and follow me on instagram.

I sure hope your New Year is well on it's way to being as spectacular as mine seems to be :)  I'll see you all soon!

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Petoskey, Michigan Weekend

A couple weeks ago Earl and I got away for the weekend to Petoskey Michigan.  In spite of being Michigan natives we weren't familiar with the area.  Most of the time we avoid tourist areas, and anyone who lives in Michigan knows "Up North" is THE place to go in the summer months. Sunday traffic going south on the highways is horrible so we usually avoid it.
This time, we decided it was off season and we would give it a try, so off we headed to Petoskey.  We stayed at the Terrace Inn, a very old inn that is situated in an old United Methodist summer camp right on Lake Michigan.  It has character galore.  Good and bad things about it, as most old Inns have, but we really enjoyed our stay.  Warning! My posts are not usually this long but there were so many beautiful old houses in this area I took a lot of photos!

The Inn's dining room is absolutely beautiful. Chandeliers, white cloths on the table and a real feeling of days gone by.  One of the things I wasn't crazy about was there was no central air in this building. Every room had it's own window air conditioner, and I am thankful for that because it was in the 80's and 90's while we were there. Definitely not typical for Northern Michigan in September!  Since there was no air in the dining room or foyer of this hotel, the dining room was not filled as you would expect.
 This is the foyer of the Inn
Instead, this is where we had breakfast and dinner, the back terrace with a view of Lake Michigan and the other glorious homes in this enclave.  It was still hot but there was a gentle breeze that made it bearable.  The first night we were there we decided to have dinner here and they had live acoustic guitar music. Very beautiful.
 After dinner we walked down through the surrounding Victorian houses to the beach of Lake Michigan just in time to see the sun setting over the water.
 I took pictures while my sweetheart skipped stones.
 Love that man :)   The next morning we walked through the old Methodist camp grounds.  When I say camp grounds I don't mean dingy tents and bunk houses.  These were summer mansions. That's my kind of camping!



 The camp ground is still in use to this day. It is called Bay View and they have summer programs for the residents.
 The old church. isn't it adorable?

 This was a porch on one of the homes.
 So many great details on these old places. They don't make them like this any more!



It was a great getaway. We came back relaxed and feeling like we had been residents of that little camp ourselves.   Have you gone on any weekend escapes lately? What's your favorite?