"Life isn't about finding yourself, it's about creating yourself."

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Clock faces...

I promised, a couple of weeks ago, that I would share my clock face print-outs. I was waiting until I made the Christmas clock I mentioned in this post but I haven't gotten around to making it yet & I wanted y'all to be sure & have enough time to make one, if you wanted to.

I love this distressed clock face but I don't know if I will use it for my Time for Christmas clock

This image is probably the one I will use.

I love the graphics on this one!

I hope y'all enjoy them! I would love to see pics of anything y'all do w/ them. *hint hint*

Saturday, November 29, 2008

A new teaset

Wanted to share this new teapot I got @ Marshall's a couple of weeks ago. I love how ruffly it is!

And while we're here....check out how much better my faux mantel looks w/ the opening covered w/ lace. I'm finally happy w/ it! Wellll, I would be if the slipcovers on the wing-backs were fitted. I love the chairs...they're very petite so they don't take up much space...either visually or physically, so I'd like to emphasize their shape. I think I want some of those stretchy slipcovers...does anyone have any & are you happy w/ them?

I've been buried up to my eyeballs in Christmas decor & had to come up for air! ;o) Talk to ya later!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

A sweet memory...

Welcome to another Rose Wednesday! Of all the roses in my home, these probably have the sweetest memory. Last year for Mother's day, all 4 of my grandchildren ( I have 5 now!) walked into my house, each one proudly carrying a rose for their Honey. Of course I had to save them to cherish the memory. I hope they make it a tradition! ;o)

I'm heading over to Jan's to see all the other roses; won't you come w/ me?

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Tablescape Tuesday

For this week's Tablescape Tuesday post, I'm showing former Thanksgiving tables. Last week, Tam showed her table from last year & remarked on how much she has improved since then. I thought it might be fun to take a look @ my table over the years & see how far I've come in my tablescaping skills. *grins*

This first one is from year 2004. I was sooo proud of it. I'd gotten that Homer Laughlin Maple Leaf china that year & just loved it! The quilted runner was made for me by a forum friend that is now a blogging friend, Knitty @ Lazy Days & Sundays. I still love the runner & still use it often. See!

I was sick Thanksgiving '05 & didn't get pics. This one is from 2006.

Still loving that Maple Leaf china! In fact, I bought more of it so that I could have enough to serve 18 people. Don't ask me why...my table will only serve 10 .... I guess I reaaaallly love that china. LOL

I wasn't able to get pics of my '07 table before Thanksgiving but I grabbed a couple of shots of my centerpiece afterwards...(there's that haziness I mentioned in a previous post). The "candleholders" are just upside down goblets & footed vases. The "runner" is actually a folded tablecloth.

And I reset one placesetting to get a pic, sans flatware. Still loving that china!! The glass charger looks kinda plain in this pic but when all the placesettings were placed & lined up, the sparkle of the glass really looked good.

And a sneak peek of my table for this year. You can just barely see the edge of my beloved Homer Laughlin Maple Leaf china...I'm still loving it! ;o)

I'll share lots of pics of this year's table on next week's Tablescape Tuesday.

And I'm still out of town but didn't want to miss out on the fun so I scheduled this post before I left. It'll be later in the week before I have time to see all the other lovely tables @ Susan's wonderful blog, Between Naps on the Porch

Monday, November 24, 2008

Gosh I love thrift stores!

I'm still out of town but scheduled this post to show off my recent thrift store finds. I love visiting antique shops but when it comes to buying, I'm heading to a thrift store! I got some neat stuff the other day @ fantastic prices.

These snack sets are very similiar to the Old Country Roses china pattern so I had to buy them. I got 4 of the snack sets, no chips cracks or other damage, for $3.99 a set. They'll be used in our next tea party. ;o)

These wall candelabras don't look like much now but they will once they're painted & bejeweled. I'm not sure I'll paint them white though....maybe this time I'll go for an aged, bronzy finish.

My husband's grandmother left me her porcelain bird collection so I am automatically attracted to them. I've had her collection for years & haven't been adding to it until recently but I keep coming across these great birds at the thrift shops & at great prices so I've started snagging them up to use on my patios. Love teh expression on these owls' faces! I have already used them in a tablescape in this post. The little porcelain column will come in handy as a riser in my vignettes. And that silver thing you keep getting glimpses of, is a stovetop espressoo maker. It's how they used to make espresso back in the old days. ;o) We already have one but when we have guests, it doesn't make enough so hubby grabbed this one for a couple of bucks. I am soooo glad we discovered these before we spent the bucks & delegated counter space to a machine! Add one of these little milk frother & you can have homemade coffee-shop espressos w/out breaking the bank or giving up any counterspace.

I always buy jewelry boxes like these..I have several but you can never have too many. LOVE the hand-drawn (I think it's a watercolor) of the praying boy...it might be reframed & gifted to a friend of my son's, who is having a baby boy, but if it doesn't fit w/ their nursery, it'll probably become a blog give-away.

How great is this little pressed glass pedestal plate. I think it originally had a dome because it has a lip on it ...none of my domes fit it though.

I paid $2 for the glass jar, sans lid ,but I buy lone lids & lone jars & already had the perfect lid for it...see!

Speaking of antique shops, here's what I got from my trip to Golightly's last week. Not much but I got a good deal on everything. The cherub is pottery, not resin (I hate that stuff!) & was only $11 . The bobeches were only $5 a piece & the Always Kiss Me Goodnight sign was only $12. I've been looking for one & the coloring is perfect on this one. I already have several of the glitter Merry Christmas thingamabobbers but I can't resist anything sparkly. ;o) Not sure why I had to have the hummingbird (other than it sparkles) ...I don't like the gold glitter & I have no place to put it but it begged me to take it home so I did. I think I'll spray it w/ some tacky spray & hit it w/ opalescent glitter to cover some of the gold.

See y'all when I get back....I'm taking lots of pictures. Salado is a charming little town.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

I won! I won! I won!

I won my first blog give-away from Miz @ Unabashed Repetition. We're old friends from "wayyy back when", from the HGTV forums. We've even met in person a couple of times but lost touch over the years. We found each other recently while blogging one day...the WWW is a small world after all! ;o) She's a really fun girl (and beautiful too!) w/ a lovely family & a sharp sense of humor. She made a couple of tattered roses recently & had a give-away on her blog & I was the lucky winner of one of them.

Ohhhhh, how exciting!!!! I was soo excited that I almost ripped into it before I remembered my camera...see the torn box! ;o)

Just look at this beautiful rose! And it's even prettier in person.

She used crumbled sheet music to cushion the rose, so of course I had to save it. ;o)

Look how beautiful it looks on my wire mannequin (I soo want one of the old/new mannequins everybody has...Miz even has one *said very petulantly*) but wire or not, this rose sure looks good on her, doesn't she? I have the perfect skirt to go w/ this pin.... it's exactly the same shade & it's made of layers & layers of tattered lace but alas, I'm 10 lbs heavier than when I wore it. (maybe as much as 15....I'm not getting on a scale until I lose weight! LOL)

I'm leaving on a mini-vacation today; my Mother is treating me to a bed & breakfast stay for a couple of days. She is rewarding my devotion to my son during his long recovery ...as if God hasn't rewarded me enough already. ;o) We're driving to Salado to stay in the Inn on the Creek, which is where Jenna Bush held her bridal luncheon last spring. It'll be so much fun strolling the shops, I should be able to soak up some good Christmas cheer before I rip into my boxes next week. And I am going to look so chic wearing this tattered rose on the lapel of my denim jacket...thank you so much Miz! Miz gives a wonderful tutorial on how to make these roses yourself here; so you can all be as chic as I. ;o)

Today is the last day to put in a comment on Friday's post to be eligible for my give-away!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Thanksgiving menu & Pumpkin Creme Brulee

Hi! I finally finalized my Thanksgiving menu (that is unless I change my mind LOL) & thought I'd share it w/ y'all. Hubby wants to down-size it this year & only go w/ the "must -haves" but that takes all the fun out of it for me. So we'll compromise & down-size a weeeee bit. (unless I change my mind ) ;o)

Honey Brie Spread w/ pear slices & gourmet crackers
Bacon Wrapped smokies (my daughter will bring)
Apple Orchard Punch
Frosted Cranberries (these are delicious & great for garnish!)

Turkey (think we'll buy a pre-smoked one this year & skip that step)
Stuffing ( we made a crockpot recipe last year to save oven space...may this year as well)
Homemade cranberry sauce
Sweet Potato Casserole
Green Bean Casserole ---(I'll have my DIL bring this)
Mashed Potatoes ---(my daughter will bring )
Salad (my mother will bring)
Jello-in-a-Can--- (my grandson would be very upset if this weren't on the menu...it's just a can of drained pineapple slices, filled w/ jello made w/ half the liquid...after it's set, slide it out of the can & slice )
Golden Corral rolls
Sweet Pumpkin Butter
Sweet Tea w/ apricot syrup

Pumpkin Fudge --(be sure & read the reviews if you make!)
Pecan Pie ---(my sister is not very domestic but she makes a mean pecan pie so she'll bring it)
Pumpkin Pie ---(I may make this recipe but if I don't have time I'll just make a Pumpkin Pie Flan
Cranberry Brownie Torte
Candied Apricots--(2 C. Dried Apricot Halves --2 C. Sugar --1 Tsp. Cream of Tartar --1 Cup Water --2/3 Cup Pecan Halves Wash fruit and let stand in hot water for 10 minutes. Drain fruit. Make a syrup of sugars, water and cream of tartar. When sugar is dissolved put in apricots and cook to soft ball stage, stirring periodically. Drain syrup from apricots and let cool until you can handle. Put a pecan half in each apricot half and roll in sugar. Syrup can be thinned w/ water if necessary & used for pancakes, waffles, tea etc...)

I'm going w/ tried & true recipes this year, all the recipes have been made before & were well recieved by my family. I know it sounds like alot but almost everything can be made ahead of time. I've already made the fudge, frosted cranberries, cranberry sauce, the brownie base for the torte (made it last week & froze it) & candied apricots. The pie (or flan), the rest of the torte, the jello-in-a-can & the rolls I'll make up Wednesday during the day (that's when I will also set the table but I've already done a trial run & I have everythng washed & set aside) & then Hubby & I will stay up late Wednesday night putting together the casseroles, stuffing & punch. All we'll have to do on Thursday is heat it all up, make the tea, bake the brie appetizer, set up the buffets & enjoy our family. And clean-up. Ugggh!

One of these days, I would love to have a fancier Thanksgiving feast....with turkey pinwheels, pumpkin risotto, caramelized pearl onions & pumpkin creme brulee instead of all the traditional "fixin's" but my kids would be sooo upset. *sigh*

and just because I didn't want to have a post w/out a pic, here's the pumpkin creme brulee I recently made & long to serve @ Thanksgiving. "Yummmmm!"... although there's not a whole lot of pumpkin flavor. The recipe is Gale Gand's. I miss Sweet Dreams, did y'all ever watch it?

And you still have time to leave a comment on yesterday's post to get your name in for the give-away!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Come out, come out, whoever you are!

Today I'm participating in a blogland De-Lurk day w/ Jan @ Jan & Tom's Place. And to entice you into coming out of de-lurk mode, I'm having a drawing out of today's comments & the winner will receive this beautiful pansy painting. It's a 9" by 12" on board...unsigned.

If you'd like a chance to win this lovely painting, then leave a comment on this post & I'll have one of my helpers/grands draw the name next week. I know that not everyone visits every day so I'll leave it open through the weekend but you must make the comment on this post. You do not need to have a blog to leave a comment but there must be some way of contacting you if you win. And sorry, but I cannot afford to pay international shipping so the give-away is restricted to the continental US.

Good luck! And nice to meet you!!!!

Also I have a meme from HoneyB @ The Life & Loves of Grumpy's Honeybunch. The idea is to show the commenters on your blogs that you value their comments so I thought thsi would be a good post to add it to.

The rules:

1. List the last ten people who have commented on your blog

2. If you’re on my list then you should do the meme on your blog too

10 Blogs, 15 Questions.

1.Dresden Plate @ Dresden Plate

2.Tam @ Yakiddy Yak Yak

3.Megan from Megan's Cooking

4.Susan @ Between Naps on the Porch

5.Miss Janice @ Etiquette w/ Miss Janice

6.Jan @ Jan & Tom's Place

7.Honey B @ The Life & Loves of Grumpy's Honeybunch

8.Laurie @ Bargain Hunting w/ Laurie

9.Teresa @ Southern Touch Catering

10.Liz from Rose Vignettes

1: What is your favorite post from number 3’s blog? Her ideas in the Trim a Tree Thursday post yesterday

2. Has number 10 taken any pictures that have moved you? Oh yeah, I was moved to have a progressive tea party ;o)

3. Does number 6 reply to comments on their blog? I'm sure she does...she's very friendly

4. Which part of blogland is number 2 from? the beautiful Northwest.

5. If you could give one piece of advice to number 7 what would it be? To maintain that sweet disposition she has...she spreads a lot of cheer

6. Have you ever tried something from number 9’s blog? she just visited my blog today & I haven't had a chance to get to know her blog yet

7. Has number 1 blogged something that inspired you? she posted a pillow on a Rose Wednesday post that makes me want to learn how to do ribbon embroidery

8. How often do you comment on number 4’s blog? probably a couple times a week

9. Do you wait for number 8 to post excitedly? Yes! I love her Tablescape Tuesday entries!

10. How did number 5’s blog change your life? Well I don't know if it's changed my life ;o) but I enjoy her blog. It's elegant & beautiful!

11. Do you know any of the 10 bloggers in person? Not really in person but HoneyB (she's Shelby to me because I'm Honey LOL) & I were foruming together on a cooking forum before either of us started blogging. We connected through our reviews on allrecipes & we've been friends ever since. My "cooking friends" were a huge support to me during my son's hospital stay. They surprised me w/ flowers @ my hotel room & even cocktail fixin's because they know me so well. ;o) They're good people!

12. Do any of your 10 bloggers know each other in person? I don't think so

13. Out of the 10, which updates more frequently? Jan

14. Which of the 10 keep you laughing?Honey B...her tales of Grumpy are a hoot!

15. Which of the 10 has made you cry (good or bad tears)? again, I have to answer Honey B.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Trim a Tree Thursday

Hello! I've started yet another blog play day. The Southern Hostess has started Trim the Tree Thursdays & invited me to join in the fun & being the party girl that I am, of course I had to. LOL If you'd like to meet more people & get more visitors to your blog then join in on some of the play days out there in blogland. Go to a party or 2 & mingle a bit! ;o)

I'm sharing some pics of my fall decor last year. I didn't do much fall decor this year. Sorry about the poor quality of the photos. I had just gotten my new camera when these pictures were taken & I had accidently put it on some setting that made everything hazy. All my pictures from Thanksgiving to Christmas of last year are like this. :o(

If you'd like to play on Trim a Tree Thursdays just let Brett @ The Southern Hostess know & she'll add you to the list of participants. It doesn't have to be a tree, it doesn't have to be Christmas, it just has to be holiday decorations. And don't forget that tomorrow is De-Lurk day & I am giving away that wonderful pansy painting...come back & leave a comment for a chance to win!

I have 3 pressed glass creamers....

Welcome to another 3 or More Thursday hosted by Tam @ The Gypsy's Corner.

I recently read a wonderful post by Dena @ Swaddle Cottage about "catching the light". It inspired me to try to capture the wonderful light that comes through my kitchen window on my collection of vintage, pressed glass creamers. I have 3 of them so it became a 3 or More Thursday post. ;o) It was hard to capture because the sun comes through so bright, that it glints off the glass & creates a glare, but after many attempts & several minutes, By George I think I have it!

Excuse my neighbor's fence...I have plans to plant something there, just haven't yet. But it's just "right there", ain't it? ;o)

Now I'm off to Tam's to see everybody's collections! And don't forget that tomorrow is De-Lurk day & I am giving away that wonderful pansy painting...come back & leave a comment for a chance to win!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Happy Rose Wednesday!

Just wanted to share this beautiful rose w/ y'all. I love the way the light glints off the glass canisters.

Stop by Jan's to see all the other Rose Wednesday participants.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Welcome to another Tablescape Tuesday

...graciously hosted by Susan @ Between Naps on the Porch

I used the table from my previous post (the antique shop post) as inspiration for this table but I improvised quite a bit. When I "mimic" a table, I don't attempt to use the inspiration table as a mold for mine, I just use it as a jumping off point. The goal is to evoke the same feeling & look...not to copy each detail.

I used peacock feathers (they remind me of my MamMaw!) instead of pheasant feathers & added some sticks as filler. Then I went through my "need to polish" box of silver. I thought the tarnish on the silver pieces would help evoke that "antique store" appeal I was going for. The "runner" is actually a thrifted curtain I posted about here ..... I added some porcelain birds to the 'scape just because I liked them w/ the toile.

The bronze chargers are just the cheapo plastic ones, the bone china plates are White Silk by Mikasa & the little brown & white ironstone plates are Royal China Cavalier in the Sussex pattern. I have the large dinner plates in this pattern also but I really want to upgrade to a nicer toile plate. *sigh* I found the goblets while thrifting but I think I've seen them @ Walmart.

One of my hubby's grandmother's birds. This pheasant is one of my favorites! The tiny hobnail cake pedestal I got @ Hobby Lobby...I have a large, med & small of these plates & I love them even though they're not vintage.

I didn't have a large silverware chest so I improvised again & used this wicker suitcase.

"Give us our dream." I actually believe we have to create that dream for ourselves. ;o)

Aren't these little owls cute? I just bought them on my last thrifting jaunt...I'll share my other finds later in the week.

I love these little King's Crown thumbprint goblets. They're tiny & must have been meant for cordials. I have the larger wine glasses in this pattern also. I really like the ruby flash ones that are so popular but I already have other ruby goblets & the clear are much more versatile.
Another one of my hubby's grandmother's birds. You saw it's mate on the wicker suitcase.

I'm trying to copy Susan w/ some "mood lighting" . ;o)

For dinner, we had bacon-wrapped shrimp & chicken bites & roasted asparagus w/ a browned butter balsalmic reduction drizzled on both. The sauce is another allrecipes recipe that I have modified a lot so this version is my own. It's good on everything! Caramelized onions, roasted potatoes, asparagus, steaks (it's fantastic on steaks!), chicken, bacon-wrapped shrimp....I have yet to try it on something that it wasn't excellent on. We added slivers of peppers inside the chicken & shrimp bites & slivered parmesan over the asparagus. I told hubby he should have pre-cooked the bacon longer! *grins*
Brown Butter Balsamic Reduction
4 tbp unsalted butter
2 tbp balsamic vinegar
1 tbp low-sodium soy sauce
Brown butter over low-med heat in small saucepan until it starts to turn brown. Add balsamic & soy & cook until kinda syrupy. When you can pull your spatula across the bottom of the pan & "part" the mixture & see the bottom of the pan, then it's done. Drizzle it on anything...I'd be willing to bet that it would even be good on ice cream. ;o)

I probably won't make it around to all the tables today as I am keeping a sick grandchild but I'll get to them this evening or tomorrow. But don't y'all wait on me...head over to Tablescape Tuesday & see all the creative submissions.

And don't forget that Friday is De-Lurk day & I am drawing names for this lovely pansy painting .