Friday, July 15, 2011

tour part 2

Hello Friends,
Hope you enjoyed the kitchen tour from the previous blog, on to Part 2! If you click here you will be sent to our second youtube video....
Then, as if you thought it couldn't get any better....well, I have more video on my dining room table place settings....YOU are sooooo fortunate to know ME! (you know I am kidding, right?)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Hurrah for youtube!

Dear friends,
I made several videos to share with you so you can "see" some of our latest home diy endeavors. Hopefully you will get the picture....'scuse the pun....!
You can go here to have a look at the first one, which is a tour of our kitchen....but not the finished product as yet, still more diy ahead!
hope you have some fun plans for the weekend, we are helping friends celebrate the nuptuals of their only son to his true love!!! We get to go to the rehearsal dinner and the wedding and dinner reception.....I am excited, should be just beautiful....and I can relax and enjoy, hoo-ray!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

A July Post!

Hello Friends,

I have seen a lot of design blogs that have been talking about adding color to your interior doors. One in particular, though not a design blog per say, but still I enjoy is NYC taught me. She painted her entry door a nice blue…but I have been drawn to aqua lately. So, I picked up a sample jar of Valspar Simply Aqua and put two coats on our front door!

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I know I need a new rug now, but I really do like the look, makes quite a pop!

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Here it is from a distance, still saying howdy


this is a lovely geranium in our window box outside the kitchen window…I was seriously thinking of painting the door this color….what do you think????

Can you believe it is July already? Paul and I are still working on painting projects…but we have made good progress and are on target for completion very soon. Paul added bead board to 2 sides of our “L” in the kitchen. We were told by a “pro” that it would not work, but, well…ignorance is bliss and we just plowed on ahead and what do you know….it worked and looks amazing! We have all the supplies ready to put up our new back splash…the tin…wow, that will make a huge impact. Then we will begin painting our 40 year old Ethan Allen club chairs, they are a pine-dark stained, we will paint them black and upholster the cushions in this fabric. They should look like whole new chairs. I bought the fabric from Joann’s to cover the cushion on the ottoman and just fell in love with the pattern.

Hope you have a wonderful 4th of July. Celebrate freedom, remember the heroes who created and sustained our liberty. Pray for our country, her leaders and her people. Recognize we are among the absolute luckiest people on this planet to live where we live and have what we have. Renew your resolve to guard our great gift with all your might.

God bless America




Tuesday, June 7, 2011

June is just beginning

Hello friends,

I am using a new-to-me software from windows and I have no idea how it will work out….but, if I can figure it out, it should make blogging a whole lot more exciting and easier. Nothing ventured….right? and it is free, so what is not to like???

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***click on any photo to enlarge***

We brought Zion out to camp with us this first week in June. Above: Z sleeps real cozy in the tent!

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Here’s a shot of Zion’s new bike!

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Paul loads up the red truck to take the first load back to our storage unit.

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Here’s what it looks like from the rear!

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Chilin with the psp

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loading up the W too

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Here’s Paul’s new Cruiser…it’s a beaute

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camping with us is a MAJOR production

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we do have a lot of fun….

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lots and lots of smiles

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In June, the garden flowers are breath-taking

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The deer eat my roses, but somehow, a few escape

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I love hydrangea…

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Progress is made in the painting of the kitchen cabinets….they are looking fantastic!

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We are getting a new stainless microwave (LG) installed soon

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We will also be using this faux tin for backsplash and getting new countertops!

more to follow




Wednesday, May 25, 2011

My 200th Post!

Hello friends,

I was just looking at my stats...not a big deal as I have 9 followers and perhaps on a very good day, 15 hits....this is just fun for me to big deal.....but then I saw "Postings:199" and thought THIS IS A BIG DEAL!!!! Wish I could give a car away or a cruise or a trip to Disney....but maybe when I hit 500????

Summer is here in NC with a vengence....90 degree temps and lots of sun....good beach weather!

We are bicycle shopping....I want a cruiser, maybe 7speed, Paul wants a no speed. Seen alot of nice ones for good prices especially at WMT. With his employee discount, they are even more attractive. I am no Lance Armstrong, but, I think it would be fun to tool around camp and get some exercise.

The photo above is of me and my grandson Woody. He is the best guy ever. I am so fortunate to have him in my life. We attended his orchestra concert last night and it was very very good. He will be a senior next year....where does the time go??? We had so many good times. I could make him happy just watching Thomas the Tank Engine. He has always been a good student and is very smart and talented (I am sure you have folks just like Woody in your life too!). Woody has a tender heart and I hope he keeps being the great young man he already is forever!

Thank you Woody for allowing us to be a part of your life, it means so much.




Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Kitchen make over...or...Eat your heart out HGTV

First set of cabinets to get the "treatment". I emptied the cabinets, then removed the doors and all the hinges and hardware.

The stuff from inside the cabinet resides in the dining room for now.

Paul taped and painted the first coat of primer after we washed down the cabinets and doors really well to get rid of greese and grime. Did a bit of sanding, but not much.

Here's the cabinet after 2 coats of primer and two coats of paint.

Here's all the cabints on the sink side all painted and drying. We are waiting a full 5 days for them to cure and dry out before re-hanging the doors....

Hello friends,

I know I have told you this before, but it bears repeating: I am a gypsy. Never did I think I would live anywhere for 23 years, and yet....lo and behold...this July marks our 23rd year of owning this home on Arrowhead Way! I am more surprised than you are right now! When I look back, I think we have done a bunch of home improvements, but nothing major in quite a long while. Home maintanance was more our theme....but with the advent of my love of the internet and all those wonderful diy blogs of all sorts and google and youtube....well, I think, if I really wanted to...I could find a video and directions on self-open heart surgery!!! All kidding aside, I did find tons of info on painting kitchen cabinets, but I went with my brother, Alan's advice since he is a seasoned professional painter-and have been very happy with the results. Alan's best advice....patience.....boy, do I know what he means now! He also said start small, do it in parts rather than all at once. That has been good advice, but man am I weary of this endeavor! The good news is that it really is looking so very nice and bright and just the way I imagined and will update our kitchen to match the cottage look of the rest of the house and for very little money, but alot of labor....I have the time, it is just the two of us and

we deal pretty well with the chaos........

When we finish painting the upper cabinets, we will begin painting the lower ones in a very soft grey...........should be pretty. I promise to keep you posted. I have tons more photos, but blogger is fussy about too many photos. I am really hoping to get the painting all done very soon...but you cannot rush....patience....right!

We are going to get new countertops and a nice backsplash and then....I think that will be all for a while!




Friday, May 13, 2011

Camp tour part one
Hello again friends,

Have had fun with the Flip camera. I made a short...6 min. video of our camp, but, it takes Blogger forever to upload, so I am not sure it will work, but I will try. Gives you a real "feel" for camping with us!

Any questions?




Scenes from Lake Woe-beGone

Hello friends,

Paul and I are very fortunate to share some "hobbies". We love Christmas celebrations and all that entails and we love to camp and travel, we love NYC and we love our family and we love the Lord! (not necessairily in that order.....) Camping for us has become a bit of an in, let's have the coolest set-up in the entire park! Not really, but we do enjoy all the creature comforts that we can haul out here....and do we haul! Since we are tenting it, there are alot of extras we manage to bring....porta-john (a must), 2 room bath house, very large screen room with neat stuff(video coming soon....) cabin tent, lots of astro-turf carpet, and on and on....we work very hard to get set up, and you may ask yourself why?

#1 because we still can!!!

#2 because we really enjoy it

#3 because we can't afford a camper just yet

#4 because we don't want to just sit at home, this lake is soooo close and sooo lovely, well....we really can relax out here.

#5 because Paul would like to catch a fish he can gut, skin and bring to me to cook!

So, here are a couple of videos of Paul launching the canoe.....enjoy Oh, by the way, Blogger took forever to upload these very short videos....think I will try another venu next time around, but hope you get a kick out of seeing Paul in action!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mr. Capote does not have a corner on memories

The summer I turned 8 my mom married Jonfre Airington. We kids got to move into what we have always called it, "The Green House" It was not green....but it did have a couple of actual glass greenhouses, one free standing and one attached to the side of the least 80 years old back then in the mid 50s farmhouse -style house complete with a huge front porch and one bathroom...upstairs (another in the dark and a bit scarry basement). That dear old house is the home of my childhood and the holder of so many sweet memories that my heart aches at the thoughts of all the laughter, tears, fears and joys of those Elmwood days. We lived just one block from our elementary school, Milton Moore, and could walk home for lunch, which we did many days! Those greenhouses became our new grandmother, Beulah's business...EASTSIDE GARDENS.

We grew geraniums, petunias, salvia, tomatoes, and many more annuals along with a yard-full of wonderful perenials which we would dig out using a sharp-shooter shovel and wrap in newspaper and sell for whatever Beulah decided to price it. Pansies in the spring, petunias in the summer and lots of weeding inbetween. Now, I say, "we" grew, but the heart of EASTSIDE Gardens was Beulah and she knew everything there was to know about plants, soil, literature, history and people! The older I grow, the more I am aware of just what a treasure she was in my life. Oh, I wish you could have known her!

So, I have a love of plants and gardening that has a foundation deep in Missouri soil. I still dislike weeding tho, but it is a necessary evil. I was not a hard worker so don't get the idea I just loved working in the greenhouse, I didn''s the interesting thing, upon reflection, working in the garden was not so bad, in fact, I am so thankful for having the experiences I shared with my sister and brother and friends and family there
at the green house.

These photos are of our home and yard. I put this other window box together to hang in front of our dining room bay window. It already looks so pretty, just love the colors. We planted 3 knockout double roses in front of the bay to take the place of two very old and gnarley (is that how you spell it???) hedges that were super ugly and no color at all. The knockouts should bring lots of color to that part of the house....2 pink and one yellow in the middle! It will take about a year for them to really show, but I am patient, since we have decided to stay....I have plenty of time to wait and watch and smell the roses!

Happy Mothers Day...Mom, Grandma, Beulah, Grandma Graybeal....




Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Ah April

Hello friends, I love this time of year because everything in the yard is looking so great. Little or no weeds, no bugs, lots of rain so everything is green and lots of beautiful color. I took an idea from a local nursery and lined most of my flower boxes with burlap! love the look and it really is quite practicle and a whole lot cheaper than those other liners. Below is my kitchen herb box. I planted from left to right: cilantro, a basil that died because of a surprise frost so is not there now, but will be replaced, a rosemary and a creeping thyme.... Here's a windowbox in front of our great room window. It has cool weather plants right now and will definately be replanted by the end of May as it gets full sun and with the window behind it is very very hot there....but for now, oh my, love the look, don't you?
Here's a close up shot. Stock, riniculas and can't think of the name of the blue flowers on the ends or the chartreuse plant in the front....those will both stay as they are good in hot weather!
Well, it was a cloudy day today and so my shot of the lilac bushes did not turn out well, but you know, they say lilacs won't grow in the Carolinas..but ours did! they are just gorgeous and that is a wonderful little dogwood growing in front!
If you click on the above photo you will be able to see the lilacs a lot better!
Here's my master gardner! Paul is such a wonderful co-worker. He is the muscle in our team! We have owned our home for 23 years and are the only owners so everything in our yard was planted by us (expect for a couple of wonderful "volunteers" planted by God with the help of some little birds) It is so satisfying to live somewhere long enough to see the fruit of your labor and to enjoy it so much. We are content on Arrowhead Way.




Monday, April 11, 2011

Catching up part 2: NEW FRIDGE!

Hello friends, Well, I tried to re do these photos, but no, here, in the wrong order are photos of our new refrigerator! I wanted an ice here it is! Here's a shot of both doors open! LOVE IT

Here's a photo of one of the features that sold me on the LG...the base pulls out so you can fit a pitcher or the coffee maker's pot on it and fill it right under the tap for the filtered water! It is sooooooo cool! Here's the sweet fridge. We are very happy
Now, we have plans to get a new microwave and paint the kitchen cabinets and then get some new counter tops. All on the agenda.....oh, and sometime we will be getting the washer and dryer, gotta bit more saving to do.




Catching up part 1: The Sale

Hello friends, So, this is what my great room looked like the first morning of the big Tea Pot/Tea Cup sale about a month ago. I had gotten very serious about weeding out my tea accoutremont. Many items were very difficult to part with, but I knew I had to be strong and determined! I also decided that my first goal was good homes for all this great stuff, so to that end, I had two options for pricing. #1. buy a grocery bag for $10 and fill it full with items from select tables and #2 Tea Pots were either $10 for large or $4 for small and all bone china tea cups and saucers were $10. That was it.
A view of the bone china tea cups...there were 30! I sold all but 3 hooray!!!
The tea pots, can you believe it???
Day two...still plenty to choose......Day one was huge, lots of traffic and full bags! When it was over, I was left with 2 boxes for Goodwill....that was it! I was thrilled and I think everyone who came felt they had gotten some nice items for good prices. I still have plenty of tea cups in my collection....about 100.

So, we have spent a whole year de-cluttering, intentory-ing, packing up, hauling to storage...then hauling back 10 boxes at a time to once again decide what to keep and what to dispose of to the tune of 18 boxes full for the big sale! I have touched all this stuff way too many times, I must be honest here....I am glad it is gone. We have shed literally a ton!!! My criteria for this process: Keep only what we will use. that is it. Now, remember, simplifing is a process. I know I am not really done, but, I am on the right track and heading in the right direction. Spring is here, summer is not far behind, camping is fast forward, yea!




Sunday, February 27, 2011

Hello friends,
Seems to me all the buzz is either the Oscars or the awful or wonderful (depending on where you are at the moment) weather....I actually think this is a good thing, because, well, we could be talking the huge national debt, or say....instability in the mid-east...or perhaps threats from North Korea???? And that's just a start! What is going on? I am ready for some peace and civility. Doubt we will have that any time soon tho. Is it just me, or does the world seem a lot scarier? There are still good folks everywhere, but seems like the bad guys are center stage. What can good people do? Well. for now,we must be diligent in observing the world situation. Then, perhaps, we might have to stand up and speak up on an issue that burdens our heart. We might have to put our money where our mouth is and invest in a cause....We cannot be complacent, we must be passionate. Will refuse to be controlled by the media, we will thoughtfully and thoroughly research the issues and make intelligent and independent decisions based on our very own observations and opinions. We will remember the heroes of the past and what made them such icons. And I, for one, will pray.
Search yourself and discover your core values. Those values or principles you will not compromise ---ever. This is very important. Find some, take a stand, be a hero!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Tea and Chocolate with EVA

Hello Friends,
because I used to work at the Eva Perry Regional Library I still have friends working there and they remember me (fortunately) and I love them all so it is always a treat to go back and be with them again like the "old days"...kinda. Some of the old team are retired, some at other libraries, some, like me, went on to a new career (tea entrepeneaur, that's me)...but it is always good to go back and see those sweet faces, hug their necks and catch up a bit on what's happening. So, when I got an invitation to do a tea themed program I was thrilled. This Valentine's Day I spent at Eva doing a Tea and Chocolate Pairing event. All went very well, lots of help setting up, serving and cleaning up. We had a full house and the audience seemed to enjoy themselves and of course, I love to talk.....great fun! The table where I steeped the teas
Some of the audience

Me, the tea expert!

Photos compliments of T Witherspoon
I learned alot preparing for this event and also enjoyed tasting the new teas, all of which, by the way, were delicious. Temple of Heaven Gunpowder Green, a Sumatra oolong and a very good Golden Yunnan. Lots of savvy tea drinkers in our area and all very enthusiastic, so we had good questions and everyone drank their tea....all of it....every bit, so I know they enjoyed themselves and that is such a good sign that the tea drinkers are becoming much more sophisticated! good news for the tea industry!!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Every day dishes

Happy Sunday friends,
Also, Happy 100th Bday, President Reagan....time flies, wow!
I think I have told you that I come from a family that shows love or, better said, their "love language" is food. We cook, and we cook good. We talk food, we talk recipes, we talk "what's for dinner? we talk and we cook and we eat and all this is done in love for those we are cooking for and remembering those who taught us and have passed. This food is a tie that binds us as family. I am not boasting when I admit that I am a good cook, it is a gift that was genetically given....I can take no credit. Sometimes I am a bit surprised at my abilities, but most of the time, I take it for granted. I cannot sing, dance, climb a rope, play an instrument, paint a picture or do higher math....but I can cook!!!
Maybe, after you understand my affection for cooking, you will understand why I also am attracted to china! Plates, bowls, cups, name it, I think I want it! Below is a picture of my "everyday" dish closet. My winter dishes are called Friendly Village...they are in browns and greens with a bit of soft red and winter/fall scenes....very old world looking and so pretty.
I have a spring set and a summer set as well...then of course I have my Christmas china...two sets....and a set of Lennox china that is art deco and more formal. Not all this china is a full 12 place service. Some I have more plates (16 for the Lennox Christmas set), just 8 in the art deco, but I have enough to set a nice table for just about any occasion! Oh, I have 3 sets of silverware...two stainless patterns and one silverplate that was my grandmother's and I treasure it, but use it regularly and remember her each time! I do not have any sterling, wish I did but I do believe it is way too expensive for me to obtain and I have lived a long time without it, so.....but I do admire sterling.
Linens.....well of course I love table cloths and cloth napkins, and table runners and all manner of decorative accessories......see where being a good cook leads??????

Saturday, February 5, 2011

The junk in my......

Hello friends,
Below is a photo of my very own junk have one also (maybe more than one???). I decided that this situation could go on no longer and so I began by emptying the drawer. Ah, ha! the empty drawer. I like the washable shelf liner, so left it.....
Here's what was hiding in that messy drawer....takes 2 pictures to show many decks of cards do we reallllllly need?

I already had the tea cups and they were doing a good job, so I kept them. I purchased this acrylic organizer at Target, it is sturdy and clean-looking, you will see it is perfect for this drawer!

The finished drawer. I kept 4 decks of cards....well, I love it is and it just looks so calm and un cluttered. I am a happy camper!
Now, go forth and get you a messy drawer and do what I did, it is easy, really. Let me know how it worked for you!