Saturday, June 28, 2008

Auction Time

I went to an auction today and bought a load of goodies for the shop.

I've unloaded it into the driveway to sort it out. And to take pictures like a good little blogger.

Right now I'm in the middle of washing the linens, and cleaning up everything else. But I'm kind of pooped. I love going to auctions, but standing all day, trying to pay close attention, and making decisions about what to bid on and for how much just leaves me drained. So I thought I'd take a break and write a post.

I want to get it all cleaned up and priced and in the shop so people can see it. That's the fun part. I love it when someone finds something I loved enough to buy...and it really trips their trigger and they want it too.

I got a bunch of these trays in wonderful shabby chic-like colors.

I love the aluminum spice set and the red handled utensils too!

And here's the clincher. This is the most gorgeous little platform cradle. I can't decide whether to put it in the shop or keep it to rock my grandbabies in. Now, I don't actually have any grandbabies yet (thank goodness), but someday...........

Joe says put it in the shop and when our grandbabies get here we will run across another.
I guess I will.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

On the Shelf

I bought a couple of cheap shelves at Lowes, and I needed a phillips head screwdriver. For some reason no matter how many we have...there's never one where it's supposed to be in this house. Hubby went out and came back with a screwdriver just for me. Maybe this one won't disappear!

Here are the shelves all put together. Our house is cottage sized and has very small closets. We are always looking for more storage. I put hubby's shoes on the bottom shelf where they don't show much. I still want to doll this shelf up with a dresser scarf and some accessories. I need to rearrange the pictures and I'm planning to paint all the frames white. Holy moly, I still have a lot to do!

I'm a magazine junkie...I admit it. This is just a little portion of the ones I couldn't throw out. We are a reading family, yet we only have one bookshelf in the house. Now we have a little more. I splurged on a couple of those Shabby Chic baskets at Target. As Dot mentioned in her comment on the last post, there are a lot of things needed for everyday life that you almost never see in a decorating magazine. Like the Kleenex box. I have it in that top basket where hopefully it doesn't show as much but is still easy to reach. And of course you don't see shoes stored out in the open too much either. I want everything to be pretty, but I really want it to work too.

Mom, can we go for a walk now?

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Bedroom Progress...Tackle it Tuesday!

For "Tackle It Tuesday" I'm still working on our bedroom. These things always take longer than you think they will. But here is a peek at how it's going. This is the top of my hubby's dresser. As you can see we will be having more of a shabby cottage look (I hope) than true shabby chic. My furniture has great shapes that would look adorable painted white, but like Jan, I can't bring myself to do's really nicely finished, good quality oak. So I'm going with the wood with some white accents. Like this great vintage beveled mirror. I've had it a long time and it has the perfect, authentic worn finish.

I love the color. It's a Dutch Boy color from walmart called Little Bluebird....I like Ace's paint better though, so I had them color match it.

One of the great things about redoing a room is getting all the clutter cleaned out. When I was cleaning under the bed I found this cross stitch floral. Maybe I knew I was going to go shabby chic one of these days. Isn't it pretty? There were two and I sold one. What was I thinking?! If I had two I could hang the pair over the bed.

There is nothing under our bed now. Hallelujah! I threw away several big bags of stuff.

See, wouldn't that bed be pretty painted white? Well it's not going to happen. I'll just have to keep tweaking until I get perfect cottage look....with some wood. After all, most of the old lake cottages I've been in have a mixture of wood and painted furniture, so surely I can make it work.

Tackle It Tuesday Meme
For more Tackle It Tueday posts click here.

Monday, June 23, 2008

working, working

Recently we decided to have the shop open for Sunday afternoons and closed on Mondays. I think it is going to be a good decision....and I am loving having Mondays to get things done during the day. Today I'm working on our room still. I got the ceiling and the first coat of blue on before Joe came home. Last night I put the second coat on and today I'm putting the room back together. I just washed the new sheets and hung them out to dry. Nothing smells better than a bed freshly made with sheets dried outside!
Here's the view outside my kitchen window this morning. I love common daylillies. So simple and so outstanding.
Here we are on the corner of the porch. So nice to be home puttering around and not having to go someplace today.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Busy day....started bedroom

Today started out with a big gathering on the square in support for keeping the Pontiac Prison open. Our governor is threatening to close the prison to save money. This of course would be devastating to our local economy as well. Our prison does have some very old (even historic) buildings, but it has all been recently updated and serves as a model of how to incarcerate very tough criminals. Hopefully the closing will never happen. If the state could find the money, they could reduce the overcrowding by opening another prison (which is already built), solving a problem and creating new jobs. Of course, money is the big factor here. A large group of citizens turned out....the crowd actually goes further to left and right but that's all I could get in with my lens.

People always ask me what it's like having a prison so nearby. Mostly it's like having any other big facility or company does not make alot of noise or create a problem in the community. And it provides a lot of good jobs to the area citizens.....and a lot of workers who support the local economy.

This is Senator Rutherford getting in place for the photo. He's working hard to try and keep the prison open.

The photographers are are way, way up there in the ladder truck. Yikes. Not me.

And I got started on the bedroom. I'm writing this on a break. I'm painting the ceiling white. I had it painted a honey color before. I think this alone will brighten up the room a lot. As you can see some previous owner put ceiling tiles up, and we have never taken them down. This was done in several rooms of our house. We'd like to put it back to plaster ceilings someday, but for now a nice fresh paint job will help.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Master Bedroom Facelift

We used these Ralph Lauren sheets until they wore out...and then I found another set on Ebay and we used those. That's how much I loved the pattern and feel of those sheets.

We painted our bedroom gold, and it did look pretty with the sheets, and cozy too. But now, many years later, it just looks dark to me. I want something light and cottagey. I want something fresh and light. Something bright and light. And oh, did I mention, I want something light.

So Monday, I visited Tuesday Morning, TJMax and finally Target looking for just the right quilt. I wasn't having much luck finding light and bright. I finally settled on this pretty Rachel Ashwell Shabby Chic one from Target. So it's not light and's more light and soft..but that's pretty too. I also bought pretty 600 count pure white sheets too go under it.

Tonight I pulled it out to check out the colors and realized our sexy red satin ones make for a nice surprise under that soft and innocent quilt too! ;o) It looks yellower here due to the lighting...but you get the idea.

Now I'm off to get some paint samples to try and pick the perfect color. If it was just me, I'd have light pink walls, but Joe sleeps here too and I'm not sure he would like that. And I don't want to ask him because he is going away on a father son trip this weekend and I'd like to do it while he's gone. I think he'd be pleasantly surprised to find our room freshly done and he didn't have to do a thing. Think I can pull it off?

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Tackle It Tuesday...Laundry Room

Tackle It Tuesday Meme
So, yesterday I ran in to some posts for Tackle It Tuesday at 5 Minutes for Mom....and thought, "I need that!" Click on the image to find other's Tackle it Tuesday posts. I try to keep our house reasonably clean, but I am constantly fighting a battle to be more organized and conquer clutter.

My laundry room is one of my worst hot spots. Everyone (including me) takes stuff out and doesn't want to run it upstairs so, on top of the machines it goes. Let me tell you, the mountain can reach unbelievable heights! So for today I decided to tackle it before it gets too out of hand.
I ran all the clean clothes upstairs, ironed the stuff that needed to be ironed and washed the dirty stuff that was waiting on the floor (nice system we have there, huh?). The last load is spinning as I write. I even wiped down the appliances and the shelf and cabinet above. Those wicker baskets are full of socks waiting to be matched, but that will have to wait another day.

If you haven't seen the befores and afters of our laundry/powder room, they are here. See, sometimes blogs do show you the yucky stuff!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

My Dad's a Smartie.........

I'm posting this for Margo who just got a sweet little stove like this one. I should put a dimmer watt bulb in it...right now I've got one of those energy savers in it...weird light. Maybe you've seen this done before, but I think it's pretty cool. My dad makes these and sells them in the shop.
I opened it up so you can see, Margo. Please ignore the massive amounts of dust! I think you just take the burner out and cut a plywood circle to mount your light on.
The power cord goes out the bottom and drape your pull chain out the side opening. If you use a low watt bulb it makes an awesome night light.

Front Porch Done

The inside of the front porch is as done as it's going to get this summer. The porch floor needs repainting, but it still looks passable. The window needs to be reputtied too, and we might get that done yet. I'll try to get a better pic of the color tomorrow. This was taken early this evening through the screen door. We bought the chairs at last year...they bounce, which I love. Someday I might recover the cushions in a more fun fabric.
Here's my sweet doggie peeking out at me.
The roses by the back patio are starting to put on a show. I think they are some kind of floribunda or rambler. They go everywhere, so this year we put an arch over the walkway so they can lean on and ramble over that instead of the sidewalk.
Dawn posted some pics of what our formerly flooded town looks like now, so I thought I'd do the same. Here is the pedestrian bridge in January and now...quite a difference!
Earlier in the spring Dawn gave me this beautiful planter as part of a blogland Pay It Forward. Thank you Dawn! Now it is my turn to pay it forward.

How does it work?

Here are the rules: I will send a gift (of my choosing) to the first 3 people who leave a comment on my blog requesting to join this "PIF" exchange, and who make the same pledge on their own blog.

The only thing you have to do in return is PAY IT FORWARD - on your own blog.

So, if you want to get a goodies from me, and are willing to do the same via your blog, let me know!
(Note that you'll need to give me your real (snail mail) address... which you can do by private email.)
Just leave a comment and I will get with you.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Back Yard....gardening........and hiding stuff

Our house is on a corner lot. If I could I'd move the garage closer to the street and have a more private garden right behind the house. But I don't see that happening anytime soon, so I'm trying to solve some of the problems other ways. We have an electric meter and hot water vent that I need to hide somehow...on the back wall of the house. Of course the meter men have to still be able to read the meter. Any ideas? Above you see my kitchen window.
When I look out the window, I see the driveway and whatever vehicles are sitting in it instead of the flowers. Does that make me a negative person? I hope not. Anyway, we planted arborvitae bushes along the drive and someday I hope they will be a nice green wall hiding the drive. We planted lilacs right behind that swing and the are big enough now that they are starting to do their job. I'm also thinking of planting some kind of vine on the basketball post. One that would kind of hide it from the back, yet we could keep it trimmed so the basket is still usable. I'm thinking something tough like trumpet vine or silver lace vine.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Painting Progress plus a little scenery

As you can see we are close to being done with the front. Joe has been reputtying the windows and replacing bad wood as he goes along. We still have to scrape and paint the front of the porch and the left side of the bay area. We did scrape and prime the porch posts before the party because they were peeling so badly. Also, the inside of the front porch is done. I don't know when I've seen a spring when it rained so many rained again this afternoon, so we didn't get to paint today.
Here is a scene from the Illinois countryside. This is a big garden junk project! A farmer put a toy horse in the field to mark a vent that they kept hitting with the tractor....then people started donating more horses and pretty soon he had a little herd. It makes me smile whenever I drive by this field.
This sign is outside a local nursing home to warn drivers to watch out for pedestrians. It was designed by a local artist and I think it's very sweet. It also makes me smile whenever I pass this way.

Graduation Party

It was party time at our house this weekend. Our daughter graduated from high school...we had a house full of relatives and teenagers. It has been thunderstorming and raining for several weeks here, so we set up all the food and things inside. We put tables and volleyball and bean bag games outside in case it was nice. It actually rained a little bit and we had a tornado touch down near here! The sun came out then and aside from being swelteringly humid, it was sunny and nice.DD made some nice scrapbooks of junior and senior high and we put up pics from babyhood to the present. We got a little carried away, but it was fun to have lots of photos out where we could see them instead of packed in boxes.
I didn't take pics until the end, so I missed nice food and table is the little gift table after she opened presents.
This is the only shot I got of DD...getting a lift from one of her brother's buddies.
In case you thought I was kidding about not getting any pictures until the party was almost is my picture of the cake!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

My Sister's Garden

A long time ago at the beginning of my blog I posted pictures of my sister and brother-in-law's garden, but when I canceled my picture trail account I lost the pics. So here it is again, in all its springtime glory.
They built this pergola from osage's a really tough tree that lasts pretty much forever. Such a wonderful place to sit and swing in the shade.
The wisteria is going crazy and has had to be trimmed. It's so romantic. These photos were taken at high the lighting is not the best. Sometime I'll have to be there in early morning. But I don't do early very well.
They built this Victorian style house new. Inside it has a nice open floor plan. It also has wonderful detailing. They used trim salvaged from old homes to trim out their windows and walls. The stair railing is also vintage. Some of the flooring came from the little old house that used to stand in this spot and was built by my BIL's great grandparents. Come to think of it, I need to do a post just about this house.
Helping dad pull weeds.
My sister likes to plan the garden and make flower arrangements.
Her husband likes to execute the plans and do the gardening.
A match made in heaven.
My sis walks down the driveway towards a split rail fence to look at the roses growing there.
My dog follows along.Here's what we saw when we got there.

This aisle leads to the pergola in the previous picture. The plants are sweet autumn clematis which looks beautiful in the fall.....covering the archway with loads of little white blooms.
Standing at the opposite end looking towards the pergola and isle of clematis. My daughter says she wants to be married in this garden. I can't say I blame her!