Tuesday, May 29, 2012

thank you teachers...oh, and imaginary friends

I thought that I'd share our teacher appreciation gifts...they were a relatively inexpensive, yet personal way to say thank you to some pretty special peeps in our lives
We had so much fun creating these...I had really hoped to use "chicks and hens" or is it "hens and chicks" 1) b/c I love succulents and 2) well, really...chicks...hens... need i say more?? but, the individual plants were so much more expensive AND those brightly colored pansies really really popped in the vintage cocktail glasses we picked up at a local thrift store.  We made little paper buntings out of scraps of paper I had in a drawer (all of my collages are made out of recycled scrap), yarn, and some bbq skewers. 
Want to make your own? it's really quite simple...all it takes is fun containers (one could find much more affordable containers at a dollar or craft store...vintage glasses...that match, mind you, aren't exactly the thriftiest way to plant flowers LOL), pansies or other little plants like johnny jump ups, soil, skewers, yarn, fabric glue, and paper scraps.  One needn't sew their bunting together...but, I am a collage artist, so, I take every chance I get to sew on paper ;o)  I am terrible about actually writing directions...I tend to get overly descriptive (I believe winded is the word) so, if you'd like more detailed directions (mostly on making mini bunting...which is fun for cupcakes), message me and I'll write a more elaborate post.

I am so grateful for all of the lovely teachers who have come into our lives this year (and all of the years past)...I truly believe the great ones plant seeds. 

I breathe a deep sigh of relief as we approach summer break...I am looking forward to a summer season of much needed rest...mostly for our souls ;o) I look forward to sprinklers and Popsicles (if it ever warms up) and time to really create.  Today was the first day in ages, that I was able to sit and freely create what was in my head...I've been so blessed to have been given a number of creative projects this past year and those projects were what kept me going through some busy and emotional times...but, it's been forever since I've been able to sit, like I used to, and just grab hold of all of those visions floating through my even stop and see those visions...and to get them down on paper.  I started this blog two+ years ago in an attempt to force myself to create again...I thought that perhaps, if I talked about my work..threw some words out there into the www I might actually be held accountable to create during a season in life when I couldn't bring myself to do the one thing I loved...we had left SCAD and I'll admit it, I knew it was the right thing, but, I was sad...
I was right, having a blog most certainly has forced creativity, but not in the way that I thought it would...instead, I read the blogs of so many other creative people out there and I find myself so inspired...
so, while I am thanking people today, 1st: great teachers and now, 2nd: thank you thank you all of you fabulously creative blog writers whose blogs I follow...thank you my imaginary friends. LOL

Monday, May 21, 2012

put it on my tab

C had a baby shower for her email followed by what seems to be a daily request these past two months, "MOM! MOM! MOM! I HAVE to take a baby gift! I HAVE to, and I need it TOMORROW!!" boy, am I ever glad I still had these little things from an old line of notions that I used to sell (since it was 8pm when this request was made)!! just pulling them out and wrapping them up in my striped tissue paper makes me want to sit and create again. 
Seriously, though, these school requests are killing me! we've been in a LOT of schools (six and counting...I think...and that doesn't count the year we had to home school while living on site with daddy for his project) and our latest school is really is...but, sometimes, it feels like the teachers forget that we have lives outside of school...last week we had something every night...and topping it off, we had to create a dish by 5:30pm one evening that could've been eaten in ancient Egypt.  Sooooo thankful those ancient Egyptians ate hummus and soooo thankful those people at safeway sell it!
 LOL, this week, we are catering a breakfast along with many many other special requests...then C gets home and the usual: "MOM! MOM! We HAVE to bring food this week," request is made.  me: "Yes, I know...we parents are catering breakfast this week," C: "NOOOOOO! We HAVE to bring food, we decided to have a party on Wednesday!" ahhh yes, of course, another teacher decided to tell the kids to bring food too.  Ahh, yes, I'll just squeeze that in between baking nine million muffins and making teacher appreciation gifts.  add it to the growing pile, please.  seriously, put it on my tab.
On another totally unrelated note...I've entered a contest to win photoshop!! fingers are crossed!! i hope I win...b/c wouldn't that just spruce up my blog so much? I mean, look at these photos...just think about how I could've changed the lighting and put them together as one photo, side by side, all cutesie! Kate from See Kate Sew is running the contest and she's running another pretty amazing contest over at her blog today! Kate's blog is one of my absolute favorites..she has some of the best tutorials and patterns! and, I promise, I'm totally not saying this so she'll pick me to win, I wish she would!!

Friday, May 18, 2012

the thrill of the find post #1: craigslist meeting gone wrong...almost...then not!!

well, it is! I present to you my first ever thrill of the find post #1:
My mother's day gift!

i love her.  she is a full-sized vintage iron bed with bed knobs and broomsticks twisty knobs (seriously, that was the first thought that popped into my mind when I touched the goldish i wanted to set up the bed, sit on it with C & T, and twist the knobs JUST like the movie).
It was quite a little trip to get this beauty...the seller of this piece was quite the character too! We were heading to a wedding a couple of hours from here and I casually hopped on craigslist as I do most know, just to see if I couldn't find some furniture like a sofa or a chair to replace the emptiness i feel now that my V has left the nest (hehe...she and I planned this...I said "If we squeeze your furniture in, we'll miss it and the place will look bare when you leave...much like after we take down the Christmas tree each year,")

the story goes like this:
12am Friday, I discover cheap vintage iron bed on craigslist...I tell sleepy M that I've found the love of my life (after him) and the absolute perfect mother's day gift for me...he agrees.  I email seller of cheap vintage bed.
8am Friday, email reply from seller: yes available, good thing you emailed....was going to meet someone here in an hour and was going to sell it to him with some other stuff....hopefully you can get it this weekend?
9am Friday, i reply: yes! yes! I will come and get it tomorrow (Saturday)! I ask her what the size of the bed is to determine the size of vehicle needed to pick up merchandise and I ask her to confirm the area where the bed is located.
no reply
no reply
no reply
M tries calling to make answer...voicemail is full.  I am beginning to think she sold the bed to the person from her 8am email.  oh well.  better luck next time.
4pm Friday, email reply from her: I think it is a double or full size bed....can get you dimensions on Sunday if you want.  It is already down and set out.  I will be at the property on Sunday if you want to meet then? this is followed with an email about meeting up Monday in another city (LOL).  I was a little bit confused.
I reply with an apology that I can only pick up the bed on Saturday.
8am Sat, I receive this email titled "I was wrong about the bed": I had the wrong pictures it is actually black....I just noticed that last night. I swore the bed was black in the ad...but, who knows...and it sure seemed a bit like she wasn't reading the content of my emails...
so, the Mister phones her and...she answers!! he explains that we will only be in the area that day...she explains that she doesn't live on the property and she accidentally locked the padlock on the gate and can't find the key...and...and..and...LOL it was a very very lengthy conversation for a man who doesn't talk much.  I sit and watch as he grabs a pen and starts jotting instructions down...after what seemed like an hour, he gets off the phone and says "well, it's like a cabin...and...well, she locked herself out...but the bed is outside wants us to go there and get it." 
me: "oh, ok.  So, will she meet us there?"
him: " told me to just climb under the gate, go up the hill and take the bed, and if the neighbors give us grief, which they might, we are to call her,"
me: "how will we get the bed out? under the gate?"
him: "umm, I don't know?"
me: "how will we pay her?"
him: "she told me to leave the money in an envelope and put it under something then to call her and tell her where the money is.  OH, and she also said to take a lot of cash with us b/c if my wife likes antiques she'll like what's there...she told me to be fair and leave more money if there is something else you like,"
LOL ohmyword...this felt like we had stumbled onto some sort of drug deal or some sort of smuggling or something (not that I know what that feels like).  About 15 minutes passed and the seller called back and said she thought we'd better meet in person to exchange money.  I kinda thought that maybe we should call the whole thing off...maybe...but, the bed...oh that darling bed...AND, get this...M, yes M, was pushing to go!!! it's normally the opposite.

So, we ventured out with what we thought was plenty of time to get the bed and go to the wedding.  We followed the seller's instructions to cabin with let me explain...the typical "cabins" in the area that this bed was listed in are just homes off of a paved road...SO...imagine our surprise when our directions took us further and further along a narrow winding road to a dead end turn onto an even narrower dirt road right along a large river at the bottom of what felt like a canyon...hmmm...I was beginning to feel a little bit more unsure of this crazy furniture quest of mine...perhaps this was my final furniture hunt...i mean you've heard stories of craigslist dealings gone wrong...oh goodness...could this be one of them?
so...we turned onto the dirt we wound our way along the river, I noticed that we no longer had cell service, ok, now how will we call you, lady, when the weird neighbors attack us and accuse us of stealing furniture?! we drove and we drove and we drove...until finally we arrived at the bottom of a dirt driveway that led up a long hill to a run down shack...the number wasn't even marked on the gate...and the seller wasn't going to be waiting for us...m and I looked at each other...we wondered how we would know we were at the right spot? and not climbing under the wrong pad-locked gate...and how on earth we would get the bed down the hill...LOL...well, obviously, you know how the story ends because there's the bed in the picture up above!
We climbed under the gate and quietly approached the shack...seriously, I was so sure a vicious guard dog would emerge from the piles and eat us alive...but, to our delight...there was the bed in the middle of piles of crap...all in her glory...I was so delighted! She didn't end up being too terribly heavy either...we hiked down the muddy hill (did I mention that it was raining?!) with lovely bed in tow...and the real surprise, though, we actually squeezed her into my car! There we were, in the rain and mud and horse poop and hay and probably rat poop...with a bed about an inch too wide to fit through my rear car, we twisted and contorted and opened other all I can say is we must've looked like a couple of loons standing out there in the rain...but, we got our lovely bed! LOL, luckily we didn't wear our wedding attire to retrieve the bed (LOL the mister almost did).
and, now she's home.  and that is tale #1 of one of the many many pieces that we me, that's not the first bed we've carried, it's not even the first mother's day bed!!
M is going to build me a box spring, b/c I want to upholster it in ticking and then we plan to top it with a squishy ikea bed...we want it too look all squishy...
I've got my eye on a quilt on ebay to go with this little beauty...but, i've promised the mister i wouldn't make any more bids this week! LOL!!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

crazy for the crazy quilts

ok...this is not my mother's day gift, as promised, (sorry for stringing you along)...but, seriously, check out what I scored for $4.99!
a vintage crazy quilt...i love crazy quilts...have one from the 1960's on my wall...can't wait to do something fun with this one:

coordinating fabric for my mother's day gift

I know I promised the tale of my mother's day gift...however, I can't bring myself to post about it without a photo of it! AND, if you've been reading my blog for awhile now, you know how bad I am about photos...what happened to the good ole days of taking my film to one hour development and having a hefty stack of pix? sigh...i keep forgetting to upload my photos...because i actually did take a picture of my lovely mother's day present and I promise you the tale of acquiring it is a good one...but, until my thrill of the find post #1 is up, I thought I'd share my newest totally-in-love-with-this-site obsession!! I plan to make some brightly colored pillows to go on top of my mother's day find (do you have any guesses of what it is yet?) and I discovered the amazing fabrics on that site!! ohgoodness...this is not's like the day i discovered cheap antiques on ebay (um yesterday) but didn't take into account the shipping price, LOL!! anyhow, take a peek at modern fabric studio i'm sure you'll be as in love as i am...

Monday, May 14, 2012

happy belated mother's day.
dear me.  has it really been this long since I've posted a for-real-diary-blog entry? i've been a terrible blogger this year...
the truth is, I have been a tad bit regular routine of dishes, laundry, more laundry, and the occasional blog post have flown out the window in this "quiet town" where i came to "rest,"
and instead, my routine has become one of running, rushing, squeezing meals in, throwing a load of wet clothes that have been in the washer for ?? into the dryer, then running some personal time=no time to create, which also=no time to blog.
I know it's just a season in life but, I do find myself searching for ways to slow down...

I have also sort of been putting off blogging b/c I have been having a little bit of a pity party lately and no one wants to read a blog post about that...I think my pity party sort of stemmed from having an empty nest and strangely, an unofficial diagnosis.
 yes, my V has left the nest and taken her pretty furniture with her, leaving my house, indeed, feeling quite and while i do love her taste and how well our combined furniture meshes, i love her company more and miss her terribly ;o) oh goodness, i'm welling up now...and it's already been a whole week, you'd think i'd be getting a grip by now!
as for the unofficial diagnosis, it happened in a whirlwind that started as a horrible rxn becoming a blessing in disguise b/c it landed us with a confirmed "this has GOT to be what you have!" from my doctor...I mean, we've known the name of this suspected disorder for quite some time...but, until recently, I guess I've just been living in this little world of "maybe it's not that," and "eh, this too shall pass." With the most recent confirmation, the calling of my disorder by it's name, surfaced some unexpected emotions in me, i guess it's really hit me that maybe this too won't pass...that this season isn't exactly just a season...however, none of these emotions replaced my reality that this could be way way worse, that I don't have it all that bad.
I approach all things in life with a pretty light-hearted attitude:
"so, we're moving again? ok, well good I needed to deep clean this house anyway,"
"so, I'm getting A wisdom tooth pulled? ok, at least it's one and not four,"
yes, that is typically the way I process things.  I assumed that knowing the name of my disorder would evoke feelings of relief, and it totally does...I think the reality of it, the reality that this could last a little bit longer than i had anticipated sort of bulldozed me a little bit, leaving me a bit winded.

A trip to my beloved anthropologie, urban outfitters, and MAC (thank you eyes thank you too! seriously, they look HOT now!! M agrees) followed by a broadway play...THEN another one of my crazy furniture scavenger hunts this past week has totally brightened my spirits and brought me back to my usual self...pure artistic inspiration, which is maybe all that i needed all along! i think, life has just been so busy, and since i now live nowhere near civilization, my artistic well had run dry...I didn't realize how much I needed to refresh it and how much faster my heart beats in an urban was so lovely to have dinner at our old favorite neighborhood restaurant, smell anthropologie and be inspired by all of the take in a play with C, having a date with M, and...topping it all off: a furniture hunt that ended very well....
oh, ladies and gents...i don't think I've done a very good job on my blog of really introducing you to my crazy obsession with love of all things vintage, of furniture, OR even to my art...
let me take a minute and try to create a little statement about myself and my furniture:
i love all things old.  if your piece has a story, it's as good as sold to ME.  i can't pass up a piece that came from someone's grandfather's house...that he lovingly built with his own two hands.  there's a total thrill of the find...but, not just the find, the find at a good price! and the smell and feel of a fresh coat of, even the thrill of somehow making it fit in the car.  ah yes, i'm a crazy one...for garage sales, and thrift stores, and little open markets and most definitely craigslist.  nearly every piece in my house is a found object with some sort of story...only my pink sofa was a full price item...and even that sweet pink sofa has a tale of it's own.
so, i'd like to take these next couple of days to showcase my finds...and their little stories...
first up will be my mother's day gift...