Thursday, January 28, 2016

16 for 2016. Well, almost.

Oh golly, it's been so long since I've posted that I'm having a hard time actually writing something, anything, without editing it before I've even finished a sentence!  But, hey, that now that I've finished one whole sentence the rest should be easy, right?

I've been crafting my own personal bucket list for the year and naturally I got a wild hare to have sixteen items.  Because Twenty Sixteen!

So far though, I only have twelve thingies on it.  Which is great because now I have room to add great ideas as they occur to me.

Some goals were realizing that I am determined to meet my cousin Linda who loves thrifting as much as I do (even if she is a genius at seeing and snapping up great buys) and attend either the Alameda Flea Market or the one on Treasure Island with her. We've been trying to get there for a few years without notable success so I've moved it way high on my priority list.

Other easy-peasy ones:  camping (because that's on my list every year) and finishing my Irish Chain quilt (the top is one hundred percent pieced so backing, batting and quilting are next).

Some are from the To-Do list, which shouldn't really be part of a bucket list, BUT...checking them off would make my life so much nicer.  It would be great if our master bath toilet actually flushed reliably on the first try.  Equally lovely would be a garage door opener that closed.  Currently I hold the button down for eighteen seconds while it closes and then depart the garage via the small garage door.  I'm grateful that it opens without incident, but holding that button down is getting old, old, old.

I even surprised myself by realizing that I want to volunteer by either using my DIY skills for Habitat or exercising my bent for all things vintage (history major here) by linking up with the historical society.  Leading a walking tour of our historical districts would suit me just fine.

Also, I plan to polish up my hostessing skills and revive Game Night for the neighborhood.  Time to make plans and send invitations.  (Right after I embark on a major house cleaning. Yeah, I know the neighbors would enjoy themselves in a slightly-cluttered house as much as a nice tidy one, but otherwise my sweetie will drive me insane with last-minute cleaning just when I need to focus on final party prep.  Truthfully, it wouldn't hurt me one little bit to organize myself enough to have a company-ready home most the time.  In fact, it would probably make me feel pretty good.)  But I digress.

You may have noticed these don't add up to twelve.  Could be you'll hear about the other ideas on the 2016 list when they become reality.  Wish me luck!

I'm now hitting the Publish button.  (Not waiting on photos.  Not going over it and over it with endless edits.  Otherwise this will join the other one hundred-fifty posts in my Drafts folder.)

Stay shiny, be inspired, focus on the good, enjoy life,

Sunday, October 04, 2015

Random Guidepost #114

There are only two options:  make progress or make excuses.


Sunday, September 06, 2015

I'm Waterlogued

The biggest disappointment with my Android phone was finding out that the Waterlogue app only works on iPhones.

Solution: relatives that have an iPhone.

I absolutely love this artistic representation of our cottage in July:

I'll be taking more photos to magically make it look like I'm an incredible watercolorist.


Sunday, May 03, 2015

Another Occasional Guidepost -- Number113

Half an hour’s meditation each day is essential, 
except when you are busy. 

Then a full hour is needed.  

~St. Francis de Sales 

Busy, but apparently still sane,

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

I've Reclaimed My Guest Room

'Way back in the summer of 2012, I worked tirelessly to transform this half-baked attempt at a guest room into a welcoming haven.

My son had moved out, my husband's chemo was over and I had the summer off.  Was I ever busy!

I sewed a dust ruffle to complement the Waverly floral duvet cover I'd made years before.  I had just been pulling the duvet long enough on one side to cover the box spring as you can see above.  Hey, the other edge was pushed up against the wall where no one ever saw it, and it was better than looking at the boxspring and frame.  Or so I told myself.

I envisioned a ticking striped fabric but found a cute botanical/alphabet print.  It was the perfect pink and the price was unbeatable.  Sold!

I painted a resin ORB yard-sale wall lamp in my favorite white ( Behr Sleepy Eyes), recovered a vintage lampshade frame with chenille (this is not it btw), rewired with white cord, then stood back and admired my handiwork with glee.

With a little ingenuity and an electric drill, I even figured out how to hang the lamp despite missing hardware.  The challenges of upcycling!

We had also been using this spare room for storage and it has a high decorative ledge that's perfect for hiding boxes behind paintings and other decor. I'm a packrat ("this might come in handy someday") and a sentimental mommy (toy trains, models, teenage odds and ends)--not a good combo.

I barely survived some hard-hearted purging and a couple trips to the Goodwill donation center but it felt good to be organized and have kept only a few choice items.  I look back at this pile and think "Yikes!"  No watermark on this photo for some reason but feel free to Pin it if you have a "Hot Mess" board!

While I was clearing the ledge, I even scraped some popcorn off one small part of the pitched ceiling and painted it--just to see what it looked like.

This was before I repainted it.  Even without any texture, it's such a nice clean difference.

I finally painted the whole room farmhouse yellow.   A warm mellow yellow that existed only in my memory of a wooden chair in my grandmother's California ranch house rather than on any of the hundred yellow paint swatches (too green, too blue, too gray, too orange, too gold) I'd been collecting.  I mixed up my perfect farmhouse yellow from my craft acrylics and then had it color-matched.  I don't know why I didn't think of that sooner, but it is the easiest way to get the paint color you want.  Duh! 

By the end of the summer I'd decorated with old family wedding photos and some of my MIL's original floral art and the room was beginning to look quite welcoming.

 I even created a sewing corner with thread, notions and a bit of Mary Englebreit happiness handy.

Two weeks later my son moved back when he and his roommate parted ways!  Let's pause for a moment of silence.

Sigh.  It was wonderful to have my live-in dog-sitter,hen-watcher and part-time chef back, they always say, every silver lining has a cloud.  

Fast forward two and a half years to last week.

The boomerang kid now has a better job and good prospects for the future, and has moved out.  Again.  Maybe for the final time? I hope so for his sake.  No one should have to move back with their parents if they want to retain their sanity.  I couldn't have!  He seems to have escaped unscathed--perhaps we are just unusually wonderful lenient, understanding, awesome parents?

Once again, I have a lovely empty room that's begging to become the guest room it always wanted to be.  I've moved out almost every lingering vestige that he has yet to transfer to his new home--blackout curtains, extra computer parts, old textbooks, navy comforter, ratty posters--and I feel like I have a bright and welcoming space to play with again.

I have plans.  Oh, do I have plans!

All the decor is still stored away because I'd just love to resume scraping off popcorn.  (It'll never be this empty again, right?)

The bed has never had a headboard and I'll be making this Ana White farmhouse versionUnless I can find an old brass one like this one during my garage sale rounds.


Minus the 70's quilt and dark gray carpet, hopefully!

I can just see plantation shutters, crown molding, new baseboards, beefed up trimwork.  My son removed the closet doors and it looks so open and spacious without them--not to mention how much easier it is to access anything inside--that I would like to hang curtains if I can find a fabric I love.

Oh, the possibilities!

I wish I could wave the magical DIY wand that so many bloggers seem to possess.  I would be able to show you a series of perfectly-styled photos by next weekend, right?  Real life just isn't like that. I have a husband and a dog, four new chicks, a job, housework and an awakening garden--all of whom need my attention.

For now, just having a (mostly) empty room is enough.

Stay shiny,

Sunday, March 15, 2015

112th Official Guidepost

Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. 
They somehow already know what you truly want to become.

~Steve Jobs 

Enjoy the journey,

Friday, March 13, 2015

Friday Favorite--Irresistible Baby Chicks

Chick Day!  These are my four soft, adorable, sweet little ameraucana peeps. I had to sneak in this one quick bit of flash photography on the chicks' first day night in their new home.

I know from past experience that these little pullets will grow and change daily so I have to capture the cuteness before it changes!  Tomorrow they get to pose in teacups.  I hope they will be on their most ladylike behavior so I can take some memorable baby photos of them!

Stay shiny,
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