Friday, November 30, 2007

From Drab To Fab

It is no secret that chandeliers are one of my most favorite things. Here is a typical chandelier that I am transforming for my mom.

A little glitter dusting of some of the supplies.

A new coat of paint and sparkle in all of the right spots.

Here are the shades that will be on it. That is it for now, although I will tell you it has many jewels on it. Stay tuned for a final picture after I install it tomorrow!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007's official...

M. was offered a "strategic secondment" to work for two years in Tokyo. I know I recently told many of you that it was no longer an option, I think I was just wishful thinking. I wouldn't usually sort out my mind on my blog, but I often find contentment sharing my feelings. Most of the time I jump in feet first and reap or suffer consequences later. This one is different. It has a lot to do with getting older and looking back on decisions I have made and seeing that feet first has not always proved wise. Plainly...I just hate change! But M. always gets his way and if his way is moving to Tokyo, then that means that by this time next year we will be living in Japan. I thought I would list out the pros and cons here and I would love to hear feedback!

PROS: experience of a lifetime, M. speaks the language, come out financially ahead at the end, M. promised us Tokyo Disneyland season passes, blessing the lives of others through service (since that is all I would know how to do), living only miles from a temple, meeting family in Hawaii for vacations, kids would be in a private school with great education, M. could reconnect with people from his mission, it is a very safe place to live, exciting adventure (we don't grow if we don't stretch ourselves, right?), losing weight since I am not fond of Japanese food,

CONS: Leaving my home, both of our parents are older (what if something happens and we are not here?), leaving friends (I hate feeling left out), the dog! do we take him or leave him?, two years is a huge chunk of my kids life (they will be leaving all that they love), someone else living in our house (storage or what?), I haven't even seen Japan yet (April), am I strong enough?,

HELP! If you have anything to add to either list please let me know. Thanks!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Not Black Friday...Glitter Friday

Happy Thanksgiving. All day I looked forward to organizing my goodies to begin Christmas projects. Here is a picture of all my ribbon and extra fabrics. Why hide it away, it is so beautiful.

I decided that I would try many different crowns this year. Some are with glass ornaments, others are made out of vintage fabrics and glitter. I will post some pictures as soon as they turn out how I envisioned them to look. For now, here is my creative chaos.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

I cut some pretty flowers from my garden for my kitchen sink window. We have been lucky here in CA to have 70 degree weather in November.

We have had this shelf for twelve years, as is. I found Moss Green spray paint and went to town. I love spray paint! It has come along way with updated colors, no drip and it dries in an hour. I love instant gratification!

You may remember this picture from before, but I finally have it matted and framed and above my sofa. I had this "crown" which is really an upside down wall table that is not supposed to resemble a crown at all. I think it is the Pièce de résistance of the vignette. Sorry about the poor quality picture.

Friday, November 16, 2007

A Happy Holiday Laugh

Click this link to see a wish from my family to yours...

Monday, November 12, 2007

Stress Free Monday

There are a few places in my home that help me to feel a little more stress free. I take them for granted, but without them I think I could go a little nuts. They are places in my home that got on my nerves and over the course of time I have found solutions. Hopefully it will inspire you to take a trouble spot and turn it into a functional spot.

This is my laundry room where we usually enter the house. I hated seeing clutter as I enter. Thanks to Target I was able to find some function. The reason the shoe cubby is mounted is because we have a puppy that cannot reach the shoes that high (hence the pupply pads). On the opposite wall are hooks that are kid height so the kids can hang their backpacks and coats.

Another kids spot, their bathroom. Copied PBkids and painted my own pegboard in their favorite colors. Now they have a place to hang towels, robes, hair accessories and combs. Easy and very inexpensive!

I have tons of children's books. I wish I had a before picture of what a mess this bookshelf was. When the books are a mess they do not want to grab one in fear they will all tumble down. So I went around my house and gathered random baskets that were not put to good use and sorted. Now they love to pull a basket out like a drawer and pick out their favorite. My favorite part was this was free!

I saved my favorite for last! This great find from Target solved our paper mess on the kitchen counter. Each person in our family has a mailbox. Mail, papers, schoolwork, even small toys are stuck in there. The trick is to clean it out every once in a while so things do not get lost. Even though the bottom one is a mess (my 6 year old sons) I can deal with that much more than messy counters. I found these little sticky plates to label our family home evening assignments. I just rotate the paper inside once a week.

I love to organize! Send me some of your favorite organizational ideas!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Homemade Christmas

Since there is a lot of talk in "blogville" about making this Chrsitmas homemade I thought I would share what I did last year. I come from generations of wonderful cooks and bakers (sadly I did not get the gene). My mom still has many, many handwritten recipes wadded up in a box. She likes it that way, despite the years of me offering to organize them for her. So last year I borrowed her box and made a heritage cookbook for every member of my family, even the kids.
In the front of the book, next to the table of contents, I included this page with colored copied photographs of as many of the chefs as possible. I felt it was really important to keep the recipes written in their own handwriting and on the same notecards. This proved to be a treat when many of the recipes had dates, places and clues as to what was going on in my family's life at that time. Some of the recipes dated back to the 1920's and I was sure to note on the recipe if it was used as a tradition of some sort. Like my grandmother always made Watergate cake for my grandfather's March birthday.

I really wanted to make this book look pretty, but with making 26, I needed to keep the costs down. Plus my main goal was to make something that could stand the test of time, as these recipes already had. So I went with the generic binders and page protectors. Not as pretty as Martha Stewart, but everyone appreciated the durability. Anyhow, the tears that were shed at my gesture made me feel very happy and now I have to think of something for this year...any suggestions?

Thursday, November 1, 2007's over...

I am so glad that it is over. Yes, is not just a day, but an entire week of ghoulish festivities that just exhaust me. After teaching elementary school, it is hands down the busiest school day of the year. The things that I do enjoy about Halloween are; CHOCOLATE, passing out candy to the cuties in the neighborhood & November 1st!

My favorite Halloween picture of '07...