Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Blah Blah Blah

Sorry I haven't been around to read all the wonderful blogs I love to follow.  I've been a little under the weather for the last few days.  But I'm on the mend and I'll get back to reading soon!

Hubby tried to take a photo of me looking awful today, but I covered my face.  You can see by the frown in my eyes that I'm getting well enough to be perturbed.  He could have made all the photos in the world yesterday and I would have been passive, lol.
Looking forward to catching up with all of you.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

A party....without the guest of honor

   The food was prepared.  A pink table
 and a blue table.  There's to be a new set of twins in our church.  A boy and a girl.
 The packages were waiting....
And where was the guest of honor?

At the hospital with contractions!  Babies are due late March or early April, but the last doctor's visit found that lungs are developed and things should be ok if early delivery.  We said a prayer for the mom, dad and babies and then proceeded to enjoy the good food and fellowship.   Lots of pictures were made, delicious goodies were sent to Mom and Dad, and she'll have plenty of clothes and supplies for little Olivia and Mark when they come home from the hospital.  We're all hoping it will be false labor and she'll carry them a little longer.

We really know how to throw a baby shower.  But it's just not quite the same without the guest of honor.  We're all thinking of you Julie!  

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Brunch with the Girls

We finally got around to having our Pretty in Pink Valentine Day Brunch that I had planned for my daughters,  granddaughters and the two exchange students that are living with one of my daughters this school year.  We had fun and everyone seemed to enjoy the food and fellowship. 

Menu:  Bacon, Ham & Veggie Fritatta, Banana Nut French Toast, and Orangecicle Scones
Beverages:  Tea, coffee, juices

There were seven of us all together - seven voices trying to talk at once.  What fun!

Here's some of the photos in random order.  I never quite know how the Blogger photo sorter is going to sort them.  Randomly, of course :)

My Palmetta Palm tree fruit tray made with clementines, kiwi, and bananas

Orange Creamcicle Scones - so-o-o delicious!  I'll post recipe if anyone wants it.

The scones again.  We could have just had these and everyone would have been happy.

Banana Walnut French Toast just out of the oven and bacon frying

All the "girls".  My daughters are on each end.  Grandchildren right beside them, and Sarah & Nadir in the center

Laura's plate before she dug in.  It was emptied quickly ;)

Gathered round the table

Me and the grandchildren


Sarah left a thank you message on the placemat.  End of party!
What a great time we had! I hope it was a memory maker for the girls and that they enjoyed it as much as I did. 

Friday, February 17, 2012

A Storage Solution

Try as I might, I can never keep the little bookshelf behind my computer chair from being cluttered.  It hold some files, directories, lotion, a tape measure and other stuff that has no business being there.  It's just a cluttered little catch-all.  This is what it looked like this morning when I decided I was going to make it look better.
Ugh, I should have straightened it up a little before I took a photo.  I was out and about today so I went in search of some storage.  TJ Maxx had these storage boxes that look like large books.   Bookshelves....books...yes, that's the solution!  The directories and files that I don't use often fit perfectly in the large one and the little odds and ends fit in the other.  I had the basket so I used it for the things I use every day.  The large one was $6.99 and the smaller one was $4.99.  $12 was a small price to pay to get the unsightly things out of  sight.

These are custom bookshelves that cover the whole wall in my office.
I think I need to organize my books and cd's next.  I'll do that before I take a photo of the complete bookcase!  
While I was at it, I bought this pretty box for magazines and papers for the bookshelf under the window.  I'm all for reducing clutter - but maybe I should go back and buy dozens of them because my house seems to stay full of clutter!

I've been preparing for my "Pretty in Pink" brunch with my daughters and granddaughters tomorrow morning.  There will be seven of us "girls" and we'll all be wearing pink.  I'll post some photos later in the weekend.  Hope your weekend is wonderful!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Valentine Card Not Forgotten - All those years ago

I had planned on doing a blog today on Valentine's Past, but instead started reading other blogs.  I've enjoyed reading little love stories and memories of fellow bloggers so much that I almost ran out of time to write my own.

But I have just one memory I have to share from the past - the most important love story.

In second grade, a new boy moved to our school.  He was handsome and had a shy smile.  All the little girls fell head over heels in love with him including myself.  In 5th grade, I let my older sister and her friend talk me into buying a special valentine for this boy that I continued having a crush on.  It was a large card - a mushy card and I'll never forget the message, "Darling I love you and want you to know - I'll never get tired of telling you so".  Before you go "how corny is that?", remember, this was the 1950's when everything was a little corny...and my sister was 16 and mushy was her middle name.  I had talked myself into believing that this boy might like me a little bit too, although he had never given any indication other than being nice - but he was nice to everyone.

In those days, we decorated shoeboxes to put all our valentine cards in.  I remember folding the card up and pushing it into his shoebox and immediately going into panic mode.  I had this feeling of horror that he was going to look at this mushy card and tear it up or laugh or something equally as embarrassing.  I tried to pull it out of the box, but it was bigger than the opening and it wouldn't budge.  Besides, he had seen me put it in - I was dead meat.   As we all opened our cards that afternoon, I tried not to look at him, but couldn't help myself.  You know - sort of like you're glued to the TV watching a horrific scene in a movie that you can't pull yourself away from?   He saved my great big valentine until last, and I was red with embarrassment when he opened it.  He turned around and looked at me and ....... smiled shyly - ever so slightly.

Today, my husband gave me a Valentine.  Bigger than any Valentine that I've ever had before.  I swear this thing must be about 30 inches high.
See how big this "For Someone Special" Valentine card is!

Inside he wrote, "Darling I love you....." - the same words that were in my Valentine card to that shy little boy all those many years ago.

Yes, I married the little boy with the shy smile who moved to our school in second grade.   And he gave me a card today that was too big to fit in a shoebox.

Linking up to:

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Sunday Snapshots - The Birthday Girl

Just as the first guests were pulling in the driveway of Genevieve's 10th birthday party, the power went out.  It was only 5 p.m. though, and positive thoughts were trying to conjure up the electrical forces at fault to come back on again any time.  There was a fierce wind blowing with a forecast of 19 degrees fahrenheit, but that didn't deter nine girls and one big boy from making the best of the situation.  A candlelight birthday party - what could be more fun? 

Our birthday parties are family occasions and grandmas, grandpas, uncles and aunts are always crashing the party.  No one seems to mind.  Here's a jumbled up bunch of pictures with my new camera that I had not quite figured out yet.  I also just realized when I was pulling the photos up that someone forgot to tell the birthday girl to brush her goldi-locks before the pictures, but that doesn't matter.  That sweet smile outshines the locks any day.

The birthday girl!
A bunch of cute little girls.

Scientific discussions concerning the force of gravity and space exploration.  That's for another post.

Blowing out the candles and making a wish. 

Getting that little bit of icing off the candle.  That's always the best part.

A house full of people

Only the very young and the very old got to sit at the table.  You'll notice I wasn't in that picture.

Big sister Chloe doing one of her happy dances
The only boy in the crowd - Cousin Jake
Are we having fun yet?  There's a letter F on Chloe's forehead that stands for Fantabulous
At last!  Birthday presents!  "This is what I've been waiting for", she's thinking.  Everyone got a hug and a thank you from the birthday girl.
Candlelight and a nice warm fire in the fireplace made for a memorable birthday party and the lights came back on around midnight!  Hip hip hurray!  And Happy Birthday to the sweetest 10 year old I know!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

New Dancing Feet in Heaven

Every Sunday when my mother would come home from church, she would take off her high heel shoes and put them in the closet.  She would rub her bunions and misshapen toes and remark, "I'll have pretty new dancing feet in heaven" and then she would smile.  Of all things to inherit, I would have to inherit my mother's feet, but I didn't inherit her grace to smile about it.

I know that I brought a lot of it on myself by squeezing my feet into too tight shoes when I refused to acknowledge that my feet had grown a size after having babies.  And I bought shoes based on style versus comfort, because after all, they didn't hurt all that bad.  And heels were required at work in my early years and they were those little pointy toe things.  The pointy toes are back in style, but at least now, they make the pointy part a little longer so that your foot fits in and the point extends further out.  Back in "the day", you were expected to cram all of your toes into that little triangle at the end of the shoe.  I wince at the memories.

Having said all that leads to the fact that I've ruined my feet and I'm paying for it now.  When I see young women stuffing their feet into 5 inch pointy toed heels, I want to take them aside and have a motherly chat.  What I have are bunions.  That's an ugly word because it makes for an ugly foot especially when it goes from moderate to severe.  And it's so hard to find shoes to fit because you have to buy them wide at the top to accommodate that big old hump of a bunion, but my feet are still narrow at the heel which means if I buy them wide enough at the top, they flip and flop at my heel.  When I find shoes that fit, I buy one of every color.  Seriously, I own at least ten pair of Easy Spirit Travel slides and many pairs of Keds.  The only dress shoes I've found that fit decent are S'Biccas and I can't find them locally so I have to order them.

There's not much you can do about a bunion unless you want to have corrective surgery and believe me, I've considered it.   So far, I've avoided having it done because you're off your feet for 6 - 12 weeks, and I think that would drive me stark raving mad.  Plus here's what they do.  It sounds painful...even more painful than having a bunion:

Severe bunion
illustration of repair to severe bunion
Cuts away the bony excess at the head of the metatarsal bone. Removes a wedge-like piece of bone and realigns the metatarsal, which is secured with screws or pins. Corrects tendons and ligaments. Recovery takes 6–12 weeks. You may need to wear a short cast and use crutches. If the joint is beyond repair, it may be replaced with an artificial joint.

As much as I would like to place all the blame for my feet on ill-fitting shoes, Orthopedists generally agree that it's mostly about genetics.  Thanks Mom!  But at least I'll have pretty new dancing feet in Heaven.  Save a dance for me, will you Mom?


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Cat's Meow............

Theo took a trip to the Vet today to have a little snip or two.  He wasn't a happy camper and he howled all the way there.  I didn't even know he could make those kinds of noises - pretty amusing actually.   He was a good boy though and stood still while they weighed him - 8.8 pounds - which is pretty heavy for a six month old cat who probably weighed a pitiful pound or two when someone abandoned him on our doorstep about three months ago.
A photo of Theo - last night - unsuspecting of what the morning would bring.

Having a cat was not in our plans and having him neutered was not really something we wanted to spend money on, but what do you do?   I told the animal hospital when I called this week that I wanted the bare minimum - no FIV, FelV, Elisa, and no IFA tests - all which can add up to a small car payment whatever they are.  These sound important, but if he has one of these diseases, I don't want to know about it.  After all, he's pretty lucky that he has a warm home, plenty of food and someone to rub his ears now and then.  We didn't pick this cat - he picked us. Of course I did pay an extra $8 to get a rabies shot - that's just common sense.  Who wants a rabid cat on their hands?

But then the assistant asked me if I wanted pain meds for after the surgery.  "It's only $10" she said.  Now don't you think pain meds should be a part of the surgical cost?  I mean even if it is a snip or two, it hurts doesn't it?  I asked her that - she shrugged her shoulders.   I sat there for a moment envisioning this poor cat doubling over with pain and looking at me with pitiful eyes when I bring him home this afternoon.  I thought about him climbing the walls and frantically running around like the little maniac that he can be sometimes.  I thought about him attacking me in my sleep because I didn't give him anything to ease his pain.

"Sure", I said.  "Just give me enough to knock him out".

Sunday, February 5, 2012

I'll be careful what I wish for.....

We had another Spring-like day today with temperatures hovering about 60 degrees Fahrenheit at noon.  Here it is - early February and we haven't had any winter weather to speak of.  We had a couple of days it dipped down into the low 20's, but by now, we would normally have had lots of twenty degree and lower days, even dipping into the teens.  As I was driving the girls home from church this afternoon,  I commented that I was wishing for just one good snow.  A little voice in the back of my head said, "Be careful what you wish for"!  Yes, we've had some of our biggest snows here in the South in February and March, so it's not too late.

As a matter of fact, we could go from this:
to this in the matter of a few days:
I didn't date the above photo, but this was sometime in February, 2004 when a winter storm dumped over a foot of snow in our area.  That was my van covered in snow  - you can only get a little glimpse that it was red. 

At this point in the winter, I can't even imagine it being cold enough to snow like this photo above, but you never know.   I must definitely be careful what I wish for.  However, there's still this inner child within that's wishing for snow! 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Pretty in Pink Tablescape for a Valentine Brunch

Four sweet young ladies will be having a Pretty in Pink brunch at my house.  Don't tell them - it's a surprise.  The lucky foursome are my two granddaughters, Chloe and Genevieve -  and the two young foreign exchange students, Sarah and Nadir,  living with them this year.  I've got to check their busy schedules to see when we can come up with a "sweet treat" date for my Valentines.

My whole tablescape is "designed on a dime" - well almost.  On a recent flea market adventure, the makings of this table began.  I got to the market just in the nick of time to get these Waverly plates, placemats and table runner for a total of $5.  That's the best bargain I've ever found!  The pattern is Waverly Garden Room.  I'll show you how I pulled it all together.

This is the Waverly Garden Room plate.  Enough to set a table for 4
 Today, I was at TJ Max and found four of these adorable pink flower salad plates.  Don't they look as if they were made for the Waverly plates?  I did splurge a little on these, but I'll be able to get a lot of use out of them with other china patterns I have.  $3.99 per plate - which isn't really very much, but compared to the great price I got on the Waverly plates, it seemed like a lot.
The napkins I made with some vintage shabby chic floral material.  I tied some dainty vintage lace around each one instead of napkin rings. 
You can see the napkin better in this picture below:
 The goblet on the left of the picture above is one of 6 that I also found on one of my flea market adventures.  They're made in Italy and I paid $6 for 6 goblets.  Quite a bargain.  The swirl crystal candlesticks are vintage and I've had them for many years.  The floral candy dish is also vintage Bavarian.
 The floral arrangement is in a vintage ruby red ball vase.
I layered over the Waverly placemats with red woven straw placemats.
The little floral S & P shakers are some that I got from a friend at her yard sale many years ago.
 By candlelight.  Everything looks prettier in candlelight, doesn't it?
The flatware is some Wallace Stainless flatware that I picked up three or four years ago at a department store sale.  I got two servings of twelve since they were about 60% off of retail.
And here's a little vintage Valentine Vignette on the buffet.  I'll have a Valentine Card for each of them to mark their place at the table.  I'm looking forward to a little Pink time with my girls!  
 Finally, I couldn't resist taking a couple of photos of the sunshine streaming in the window this afternoon.  There's nothing like a little sunshine to get rid of those mid-winter blues.

Grandchildren are so wonderful.  My girls are 14 and 10.  The exchange students that are here for the school year have become my adopted grandchildren and I love them dearly.  They are both sweet 16.  Won't we have a wonderful time?  Here's a cute sign that a friend posted on her facebook page this week.  I find it to be so true, don't you?  At least for those of us who are grandmothers ;)

I'm participating in:
Tablescape Thursday
Centerpiece Wednesday. 
Valentine Link Party
Go to this link  and this link see all the beautiful tablescapes.