Monday, December 31, 2012

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!  Hard to believe it's 2013....really, already?  2012 seemed to fly by, so my one wish at the moment is that we can catch our breath in this new year and feel slightly less rushed through life.  With that in mind, I thought a quiet moment at my antique writing desk might be in order.  The old navy man bought this for me quite a few years ago.  I keep some special keepsakes in it's little drawers and the rest holds my growing collection of greeting cards...I need to send more of these out from time to time....one of the things I'd like to do more of in this new year.
So....does looking at this photo bring your blood pressure down?  It does mine...the soft light of the candle...some handwritten pages....so calming.  Ok, some might call it boring, but not me.  That photo is of me and parents.   Myrt and CJ Williams....taken in early 1946.  That little kid is me...we are awaiting the birth of my oldest brother, Mike.  I am sixteen months older than he...so in this photo he is 'a little bun in the oven' as they say.   The only photo I remember of the three of us.  
I have an old book from the flea market...well, I have many....but this one has become one I draw in and write things in...right over the printing.  Now, why I don't know....just something I play around with.  So, I chose three little thoughts to use for this New Year's Eve post and wrote them.....for you to see.
They aren't that clear...so I will type them for you.....much easier to read 'in real life.'  
It's the thought that counts, isn't it?  
You will be able to read them at the end of this post.  But, if you are like me...you like real handwriting...even when you can't really make it out.
This candle is one I've had for a while and has seen 'better' days, but late at night, you work with what you have.  It has a wax coating over it, so I took a toothpick and drew these leaves on it, then removed the leaf shapes...leaving leaf-shaped holes....I figured when it was lit, it would look kind of 'fancy' especially in a low light setting.  I like it.
Actually, I took these photos last night...Sunday.....and it really was 11:25 p.m. when I took these photos!
Yeah...there we are!  Dad in his army clothes.....Mom in a 40's dress....wish I had it now and the little coat I am wearing.  Mom from McGregor, Texas....Dad from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  He was stationed at Ft. Hood, not far from McGregor...that's how they met.  I was the first kid of four.  He was 34 when I was born...she was 23.  He lived until age 63, she 81.  And, me, well I'm 68.  Yes, time does fly...and somehow memories are made.

And, here are the writings....for your enjoyment:

#1, by William Arthur Ward

Another fresh new year is here..
Another year to live!
To banish worry, doubt and fear,
To love and laugh and give!

This bright new year is given me
To live each day with zest...
To daily grow and try to be
My highest and my best!

I have the opportunity
Once more to right some wrongs,
To pray for peace, to plant a tree,
And, sing more joyful songs!

#2, by Ralph Waldo Emerson

Write it on your heart that every day is the best day of the year.

#3, by Henry Van Dyke

Hours fly
Flowers die.
New days
New ways
Pass by;
Love stays.
 

From my house to yours....a very lovely, safe, warm and cozy evening and a very Happy New Year...2013!!!  take care, pat

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Snow and a Giveaway Winner!!


Snow!  Who knew?  I guess I just wasn't ready for this....but it came anyway.  It started yesterday around noon and just got worse.   What I thought would be a quiet Christmas Day spent with the  old navy man and my 92 year old father-in-law...turned into an adventure.  I won't tell you the whole story....but it involves a power outage, one man on oxygen with a breathing treatment machine and another one...on a driving adventure that shouldn't have happened.  It was interesting.  Our power is back on, but father-in-law's is not, so he is still here.  Poor thing...he's having to spend time with US...he is probably thinking living alone isn't too bad a thing!  So, take a look at my photos, such as they are...then check out my After Christmas Giveaway winner!!  (This first photo is looking from my front porch across the street...taken around 7:00 p.m.
Out back...same time...just beginning.  As you can see from the chair...things were being blown from here to there as time went by.
Looking out at my Nest.  Cold and Dreary!
The next three photos were taken at 1:00 a.m.  Yes, I couldn't actually rest my brain to go to sleep, so was taking photos every little bit last night.  This is the view from my back door to my next door neighbors.  I love that pecan tree...have taken it's photo in every conceivable light and weather!!
The Nest.  Peaceful...after being blown about.  Sometimes I am out there at this same time (1:00a.m) trying to get something done...not this time!
 Yes, another middle of the night photo.  My father-in-law's car.  And, looking down the street.  Amazing to me that it was so LIGHT out at that hour.
 Morning.  Looking out front. 
 Ice in the trees.  Funny, it all started with ice...then wind, then snow.
About 8:30 a.m.  Can you see where the wind broke my neighbor's flag pole?  There are two, one is bent in half.
 Looking across the street toward the Catholic Church.....The light on those trees...sparkling icy trees.
 Our porch swing....COLD!
There's Jimmy's pecan tree in the a.m.  So pretty.

 A tree in our backyard...taken from the bathroom window.  I just happened to see three 'characters' out playing in the snow...can you spot three Cardinals?
One way in upper right of photo~
Another view out front.  Beautiful trees!
Feeding the birds on the  left.............I actually noticed I caught one flying when I posted this photo just now.
 Got out this afternoon and made myself a path to the Nest........Well, if you want to get somewhere, sometimes you have to make it happen!!
 From the Nest to the house. 
Amazing what you can do when you want to!  I also cleared a path on the driveway.....actually, things had begun to soften....like the ice...so it went better than I thought.

So, there you are...Christmas Day 2012 and the day after.  What an experience!!!  Now, for my big announcement....my After Christmas Giveaway Winner is:  DEB from Ontario, Canada!!!!  How appropriate considering these photos...although to Deb...this snow probably doesn't even count.  Different for those of us in the South!  Deb, so happy to send you the 'loot'....kindly send me your mailing address, dear friend!!! 

Hope you all had a lovely Christmas and I wish you a very Happy New Year too.  Remember, I will be giving another Giveaway to someone for Valentine's Day!!!  Now....go, stay safe, warm and cozy and ENJOY the rest of the holiday season.   See you soon.  take care, pat

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Just Before Christmas, A Giveaway Reminder

Hi out there!  I know you are all busy getting ready for Christmas...well, as I write this now, I bet you are having a Christmas party...or, at one somewhere other than home.....so, should you be reading this on Wednesday, take this post as a REMINDER to comment on my previous post to have your name included in my Christmas Giveaway.   I will be announcing the winner late Wednesday night, the 26th.

One of my readers asked me to post 'something, anything'....that just made my day - so here is what I decided to post.  It certainly comes under the heading of 'something, anything!"  Once again, I'm showing you the entry into my house.  Yeah, I know it isn't really "Christmasy" except to ME, but I am the one posting, right?
This buffet I put in the entry just because it didn't fit anywhere else has turned out to be just about my favorite spot in the house.  I'm sure I don't change it out often enough...for instance there are only two little tiny things here indicating Christmas is near, but I did so love all these dried bits of nature, some are real, some are not...the cross-stitched samplers, the old bird house and all the birds.  Not wanting to take these down yet, they have become my Christmas decorations.  Yeah.  Kinda strange, but so am I.
I really DID want you to see the paper star.  It was sent to me by a reader and now friend, Cindy P, from Kansas.  Along with a box of cookies!  A very generous thing for her to do and much appreciated.  I thought the star would look fabulous here with my little hodge-podge of  a bird/stitching/nature vignette.  I love it.  THANKS again, Cindy!
Aside from the star ornament, some little hint of Christmas should be present, I suppose, so I just added this little wreath to the birdhouse.  
 These three cross-stitched pieces were purchased from the flea market....I thought they were quite pretty and looked really good here with all the nature stuff.  I won't say just how inexpensive these samplers were...just that the vendors had no idea how special they were.  Lucky me.
Cindy's star again....I love how it looks against the cross-stitching and even my quilt in the background.  A treasure, if you ask me!
 Closer.....I'm just loving it!
I creep some relatives out with all this dried natural stuff....especially real bird nests, and wasp nests.  I like them...and love the dried sunflowers.  That nest on the left is REAL (so is ONE of the eggs, found ON THE GROUND, underneath a tree in my backyard).  Get it?  BIRD NEST ON THE GROUND!  The nest on the right...well, it's not real.
Here, real nest on the upper left, smaller nest with green 'sparkley' eggs...of course, not real!  That little framed painting of a tree is so cute..found it too at the flea market..$2.
 I showed the little tree in the cup and saucer before, but thought it should be in this vignette too.  Then, there is Micah's paper flowers and the third sampler.  So cute.  The little bird standing there is standing on a piece of brown paper with a pressed leaf from my friend Bibi's yard.  She does the cutest little things with every day objects....I love this one. 
Last year I bought this old bird house from the flea market....it had to go on this buffet...so I placed it on a stack of black books....vintage ones having to do with electricity....a gift from one of the old navy man's friends....a former co-worker from the power company.  Another big fat bird sitting on her nest...from Bibi.
Here we are again.....just something from here at my house....to you at your house.  So...wishing you a very Merry Christmas.....a merry and bright, safe and cozy one....please comment on my previous post if you'd like a chance at the Giveaway....and see you Wednesday night!!!  Love you people!!!! pat

Saturday, December 15, 2012

An After-Christmas Giveaway!

Well, I don't think I've ever heard of an 'After-Christmas' Giveaway...but that's what we have here.
Today I got to thinking about how busy we all are and decided right then and there that 'after' Christmas was a really good time to give something away....right between Christmas and the New Year festivities....so, would you like something in your mailbox right about then?
The first photo is what you will receive should you be the winner.  I hope you are interested enough to comment and put your name in the drawing.  In no particular order...here are the Giveaway items.
Two of my favorite magazines...the current issues:  Where Women Create and Romantic Homes.  I almost always just about 'read' the ink off these pages.  Hopefully, you will be inspired also!
Next is a nice warm scarf to wear around your neck on the cold winter days ahead.  I knitted it myself.  Yes, I can knit, but nothing complicated.  This one is about as simple as you can get, but I liked the colors and hope you do too.  It feels pretty nice!
 Then, there is a little dress and purse charm.  So cute.  I liked it, so thought you might like it too.
Another photo of the scarf....I like to knit these while watching tv with the old navy man.  There is really no 'thinking' involved and I really like having something for my hands to do while my mind wanders around thinking of other things.  Or not thinking at all, whichever the case may be.  I've got a few in the downtown studio.....and am working on another.
There is that little decorative box in the photos too.  I couldn't decide what to put into the box, so just added a package of peppermints.  Those always come in handy in the winter, don't you think?
So, there you are.  The After-Christmas Giveaway!  Kindly comment on this post and maybe you will win these 'goodies.'  I will be announcing the Winner on Wednesday, December 26th,  late in the evening.

Sure hope you all have a wonderfully Merry Christmas!!  Stay warm, safe, cozy and have FUN!!!
pat

Monday, December 10, 2012

Three Chairs

Today I had the idea I'd do a little something with three of my 'little chairs.'  I have a collection of little chairs...from TINY, to kid's chairs even I can sit on.  Turns out I can hardly turn down a 'cute' chair at the flea market.  One of my 'kid's chairs' is from my own elementary school days.  I'm not sure it's one I actually sat on....but when our old school...H.G. Isbill Elementary in McGregor was torn down, my sister got one of the chairs for me.  It's in my living room...actually, that may be the chair that started me on the 'collecting of chairs' bug.   The little chair you see here is one I purchased at the flea market.  It was just a little chair, stained pine, I think.  But, in my mind, I saw it a bit differently.  So, I took it to the downtown studio, painted it flat black, then added some paper napkin art in the seat and on the back...(the birds).  Found a little poem about Spring and added it also.
Then, I took my electric sander to it to make it look 'old.'  Looks like lots of little people scooted across this little seat!  My friend, Patsy, gave me the bird sitting there.  So cute!
I decided to make three little 'vignettes' with my three little chairs.  And, could only add things already in the house.  I added this little tree, some pine cones, shredded paper sacks and cinnamon sticks to this cup and saucer.  It had to be in the photo.   The cup and saucer...yes, from the flea market.  Three or four dollars as I recall.
I wanted to use this clear glass vase of silk flowers.  It has lived in my backyard studio for quite a while, so carried it into the dining room to use in this vignette.  It is sitting on a cookie tin with Christmas card messages depicted on it.  A bird nest (no, not real, although I have a bunch of real ones), the vase is large and filled with river rocks and a little china bird in a nest.  Can you see it?
Here you can see the paper napkin I used on the little black chair.  Love the bird!
 Of course, when you want to give someone something, sometimes things break.  As Patsy was picking this bird up to bring to me...she accidently dropped it and a piece of it's wing broke off.  Oh, lucky people who craft....I had glue and some paint to match...and you'll never know where it broke!
 I've no idea how to really sand something to make it look old and used, but I think this chair looks pretty used!!
A look at the back.  There is also a little bird on the back of the chair...right by the seat on the left side, but it doesn't show in this photo.  Too bad.
Here is chair #2.  I bought this cute wing back chair several years ago at the flea market.  Loved it instantly.  I paid $9 for it and have really used it in lots of different spaces.  Sitting in it for this vignette, is a teddy bear I bought at one of our long ago closed flea markets, Room Service.  Loved that place.  Anyway, the chair is so cute.  It has a linen tea towel over back with a little garland of silk roses on one side.  Another find on the same day.  The bear was purchased at the same place...only later.  The lady that was working there that day told me the bear was her daughter's.  She was way grown and didn't want it any longer.  Imagine!  The bear's head comes off...which I find kind of weird...and you can hide little treasures in a compartment there, then screw the head back on.  I loved her little dress too.  On her lap is a tiny pitcher and bowl I also bought there.  I paid $5 for it and could not leave the building without it.  It's from England and so pretty!  
Here's a closeup.  Isn't this cute as can be?  I also decided I'd add the little pot of paper flowers made by my friend, Micah.  Just love it and had to buy it from her booth. 
Made from book pages, shredded paper, wire and it has a 'real' jewel in the flower center.  She had several, none with a P or an E, but, heck, my son's name begins with an S, so it made sense to me!  She painted the little pot with chalk paint.
The little birds were given to me by Bibi.  So cute.  Look at their little feet!!!  And,there is that nest and cookie tin again.
The pitcher and bowl....also the name on the bottom of each.  They are just so dear.  As you know, I am a pushover for flowers!!
I don't have any idea what it is really worth....and don't really care to tell the truth.  To me it is just so pretty, it is almost priceless!
The view from the back.  Just a simple little grouping.  I've no idea how to do anything complicated concerning decorating, so I just go with what I like....and what does it hurt?   Since I was just creating these little vignettes for this blog, I didn't think about it too much, but I wish I had put something on the table besides this white table cloth...you know...something to use as a rug!
Ok, chair #3.  It's funny, but I chose to sit this teddy bear on this chair and now you can only see the bear!!!  That just proves I don't really know what I'm doing.  Love the little table too.  It has real 'drop' leaves and is really cute.  I paid $4 for it.  No chairs.
My friend, Bibi, gave me these houses.  I think she purchased the large one and decorated it, then made the little one if I remember correctly.  They sit out in my backyard studio year round...
Friend, Jim, gave me this tea set...and the little Christmas tree.  Just fits on the little table. I love the way it looks!
I call this teddy bear my nearsighted librarian.  Sometimes she sits on or near a stack of books....and well, she does wear glasses!  She is also holding an old thread spool, so she's surely a quiltmaker too! On her lap is a small pincushion I made.
 And, there's old Santa over there.  Yeah, I guess Christmas is coming soon!
Now you can see the chair....once again...the view from the back.    Such FUN!
Here is Santa's bird house, and this little metal cat.  Looks very old, but isn't.  I like her though.
So, there you have it.  Three chairs in a Christmas mood.  Santa will be here soon...have you been good?  
This photo reminds me of ME.  She looks so very nearsighted and a bit off kilter.  Well, we do the best we can!  Sure hope you enjoyed the chairs and all.  Please visit again....I will be having a Christmas Giveaway very soon.  Meantime, take care, stay safe, warm and cozy!  Thanks for visiting! pat

The Bird Nest on the Ground Studio

The Bird Nest on the Ground Studio
Right in My Backyard

A Bit of Heaven

A Bit of Heaven
An original designed wall quilt with my vision of heaven on earth.