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

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Don't hurry, don't worry....

and don't forget to smell the flowers.

This is an arrangement I have inside an antique birdcage...love the reminder!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

3 or more Tuesday...rose paintings

Hello & welcome to another 3 or More Tuesday, hosted by Tam @ The Gypsy's Corner . 3 or More is one of my favorite meme's because it's a great way to feature a collection & it's always fun to see everyone else's. For today's post, I am sharing my collection of rose paintings. All were thrift store finds & none are masterpieces but I think their amateur look only adds to their appeal. I have reframed most of them & added glazing, etc to some, to tone down "too bright" coloring .

I like to group my collections so they are all displayed on a large wall in my bedroom. Visualize the old vanity painted a steel blue, antiqued w/ glaze, of course. I have had a hard time deciding what color to paint it & I think I have finally decided on an antiqued steel blue finish....what do you think? Yes or no? I've also considered mustard yellow & olive green...which color would you choose? Also, yay or nay to the "Etc" sign...does it add or take away from the wall vignette?

click on any picture to enlarge

I bought the "Always Kiss Me Goodnight" sign @ Golightly's Antique's, here in Ft Worth.

This next one is the oldest in my collection & is also my favorite, it's oil painted on cardboard & is dated 1946.

This big oil painting was the first in my collection & the little oil on canvas is one of my faves. I've left it unframed just because.

I kept the next 2 watercolors as is....they didn't need anything as I loved the frames & they already had an aged look to them. They are probably from the 50's. I considered getting rid of the wild rose one on the left because it is very amateurish but I couldn't bear to split them up.

This oil painting had been bent & the paint was all cracked off in the crease so I touched it up & smoothed it in & you can't even tell now. This artist probably had the most talent, don'tcha think?

You may remember this next watercolor from this thrift finds post back in November. I reframed it in an old frame, rubbed it w/ some shoe polish & aged it w/ tea bags. Doesn't it look sooo much better?

Love the teeny-tiny ladybug!

I wish I had taken before pictures of these next 2 oil paintings, prior to glazing them but it was long before I started blogging.... both were very bright & the glazing (I'll use just about anything to glaze....acrylic paint watered down, furniture stain, shoe polish, even tea bags...whatever works!) helped so much to tone that down. On teh top one, I used too much glaze so I dry-brushed on some white paint...it worked!

In a magazine, I once saw a wall of amateur rose paintings & fell in love w/ the look. It took me over 10 years to amass my collection as I insisted upon them all being thrift store finds & I had a $10 limit on each. That made the hunt for my collection a lot more fun & rewarding. Do y'all do that too?

Be sure & stop in over @ Tam's to see who else is playing along today...Happy 3 or More Tuesday!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Quick! Go buy cherries! Now!!!

They are only in season for a very short while. ;o) I love sweet cherries...Rainier are my favorite but Bing run a close second. One of my favorite recipes to make, every summer, is Cherry Chicken Lettuce Wraps. You can use water chestnuts instead of cherries & it's a pretty dang good recipe still but don't do it unless you can't get cherries. ;o)

I was out of carrots so this time, I subbed thinly sliced celery ....don't know if it changed anything other than teh appearance. Because the orange color does add a lot to the aesthetics, I served them w/ sliced oranges. And I always use leftover chicken instead of making it up special for this recipe. I am a huge fan of morphing leftovers so I like to grill, roast, saute or broil an extra cut of meat or fish to use in another dish. You can also also use rotissirie chicken from the grocery store...either way, just add the ginger to the sauce. And I think butter lettuce is best for this recipe...it's crunchy but still pliable enough to wrap w/out breakage. Do y'all ever buy those living lettuces? I love them...they'll stay fresh for almost 3 weeks!

Cherry Chicken Lettuce Wraps

2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger root
1 1/4 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into bite size pieces
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
4 tablespoons teriyaki sauce
2 tablespoon honey
1 pound dark sweet cherries, pitted and halved
1 1/2 cups shredded carrots
1/2 cup chopped green onion
1/3 cup toasted and sliced almonds
12 leaves of lettuce

1.Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add ginger and chicken and saute until cooked through, about 7 to 10 minutes. Set aside.
2.In a large bowl, whisk together remaining 1 tablespoon oil, vinegar, teriyaki sauce and honey until mixed together. Add chicken mixture, cherries, carrot, green onion and almonds; toss together.
3.To Serve: Spoon 1/12 of the chicken/cherry mixture onto the center of each lettuce leaf; roll up leaf around filling and serve.

Serves 6

So many cherry recipes, so little time!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Today's Thrifty Treasures...thrifting w/ Rudy

Hello & welcome to Todays Thrifty Treasures, hosted by Rhoda over @ Southern Hospitality. Geeze, for a while there it seemed as if my blog was all about thrifting but lately it appears as if I haven't thrifted at all. I haven't been posting about my thrift finds but I've been thrifting. ;o) Today is my first time to play along in this meme..."hello" to those of you I know & "nice to meet you" to those I don't!

I recently took my shih tzu pup, Rudy to the vet.... it's across town but near a favorite thrift haunt of mine & of course, I felt the store calling to me. So I took him inside & asked them if it was OK to shop w/ him in the basket. They took one look at his adorable face & said "yep!" LOL I enjoyed having him w/ me but I couldn't get much shopping done for all the people wanting to pet him . Not that I blame them! But I am very focused on my "hunts" & don't really like to be bothered. I usually am though (I'm told I am very approachable & I do try to be gracious despite my feelings) & today I had ladies & children milling all around me. My eyes kept wanting to scan the shelves while they talked w/ me & it was hard to pay attention to so many. We actually caused a traffic jam @ the check-out lines! He was wonderful but I still think I'll leave him at home while thrifting. ;o)

I'm so proud of Rudy... he is growing up to be exactly how I wanted him to. He greets every visitor w/ enthusiasm & affection..... he's still a bit fearful of new dogs but he is quick to make friends once he knows that they are no threat to him.

Here is our haul for the day..... linens napkins monogrammed w/ a J, hanging wire votives, frames, tea cups, tole tray, milk glass vases, couple of figurines, lace curtain panel, ball fringe trim, etc.

click on any picture to enlarge to see details

teacups w/ roses (minus saucers) & ball fringe

tole tray & porcelain dog

bisque kissing couple (love them!)

a big bag of flocked, tacky christmas pics (I plan on making a huge kitschy Christmas wreath...loading it up w/ the tackiest vintage adornments I can find. I have been gathering them for years & about have enough...these aren't vintage but will be good fillers)

couple of old picture frames, and a wire whatmacallit ( I bought it to display vintage hankies but don't really care for the look after all, it's messy-looking...any other suggestions as to what to do w/ it?)

china bride & groom & another carrot to add to my collection

and the piece de resistance...bagfuls of vintage seam binding, bias tape & rickrack! Woohoo! I don't why this "junk" has such an appeal for me but it does.

The bride & groom figurine & the kissing couple love their new home in my glass mini-curio....see!

And the tea cups look great in my tea cabinet!

Hope you enjoyed my Thrifty Treasures! And ain't my dog cute??? ;o)

Friday, July 17, 2009

wanted to share this 'scape on my island

Hi y'all! Isn't this sweet bunny just adorable? I got him recently while thrifting. I often use bunnies all the way through the summer ...they're not just for Easter! ;o)

I put him on a cake plate w/ a small lamp & some dried mini-carnations. And isn't the lampshade pretty? It's just an el-cheapo shade gussied up w/ a scrap of lace, pinned on w/ a cameo pin. One day soon , I will do a post on my cameo pins...I scored a huge lot of them on eBay several years ago for $15!

Have a good weekend everybody....we are do for some much needed rain but I hope it holds off until after we get back from McKinney trade days .

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Outdoor Wednesday...house finch w/ a sweet tooth

Hello & welcome to another Outdoor Wednesday...hosted by one of the friendliest bloggers I know, Susan @ Southern Daydreamer. If you're a little shy & hesitant to join in one of the blog parties then Susan's is the perfect one for you to start out on. She has a wonderful knack of making people feel welcome & liked.

I haven't been to many blogging parties lately...mostly because they have all gotten so popular, w/ so many participants, that it's hard to visit everybody. So I am going to start limiting myself to no more than 2 parties a week.... hopefully I'll be able to get around to all of the players but it may take me a few days to do do. I'll skip around to each party & plan on doing each once a month, instead of weekly as I have in the past.

For today's post, I wanted to share an unusual visitor I recently had to my window hummingbird feeder...a male house finch! I've seen orioles @ hummingbird feeders but never a house finch, have y'all?

Checking to see if the coast is clear.

This pic shows that he wasn't just confused & hoping there was seed in this feeder...he drank from every portal he could reach & returned for more several times over teh next few days, then he never returned. ????

Maybe he needed a temporary sugar rush to keep us w/ his young'uns! ;o) House finches are probably my favorite birds (it's so hard to pick a definite favorite!)...they're beautiful, have a lovely song & a sweet temperament.

There are always lots of interesting posts in the Outdoor Wednesday parties...come w/ me to Susan's to see what everyone else is up to!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Foodie Friday...jeweled jello squares

Hello everybody & welcome to another Foodie Friday, hosted by Michael over @ Designs by Gollum. For today's post, I'd like to share a recipe I recently made for the grands...jeweled jello squares. If you like jello (who doesn't!) & sweetened condensed milk (I could eat that stuff w/ a spoon *blushes) then you'll like this dessert, even if you are not a kid. I found the recipe @ Gourmet Mom on the Go...she has a great blog w/ lots of wonderful ideas guaranteed to bring out the kid in you.

Jeweled Jello Squares



4 small boxes of jello (different flavors & colors for best result)

1 can sweetened condensed milk

2 envelopes unflavored gelatin



Dissolve each box of jello separately into one cup of hot water. Pour into individual containers (small tupperware bowls work great) & chill overnight.

Ready a 9 by 13" pan & cut flavors of jello into small blocks. Mix together carefully in pan. In a separate bowl, dissolve gelatin packets in 1/4 cup of cold water. Add dissolved gelatin to 1 & 3/4 cup of hot water & condensed milk. Cool.

Pour cooled mixture over jello & chill overnight.


Be sure & stop by @ Gollum's to see all the other food porn & bring an appetite!

Monday, July 6, 2009

3 or More Tuesday....bisque cherubs

Hi y'all! I know I've been neglecting my blog lately but frankly, my heart just hasn't been in it. The anniversary of my son's accident was this past week & it has been weighing heavy on my mind. I honestly don't know if I will ever enjoy the 4th of July again. Hubby & I were talking about how surreal it was last year. Clifton's accident was just the day before & there we were, sitting in that hospital waiting room, watching the TV & seeing the celebrations. It just felt so unreal! How could the world go on when our's had stopped? I was afraid that the feelings of "impending doom" would continue on through the summer, repeating my feelings of last year but I felt as if a weight has been lifted as soon as the 4th was past & I'm ready to shake off the lingering feelings of horror & take control of my emotions back.

For today's 3 or More post,hosted every Tuesday by the very talented Tam over @ The Gypsy's Corner, I'd like to share my collection of Lefton bisque cherubs. These are in my bedroom, paired w/ a collection of rose paintings, which I will share soon in another 3 or More post.

This one is my favorite...LOVE the expression on teh face! I have had this one for years & then came across a pair of them on eBay...I kept the single & gave the pair to my granddaughter, Caralyn, on her 1st birthday.

If you have a collection you'd like to share, link up to Tam's blog...it's always fun to visit & see what everyone else is sharing.