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Thursday, February 26, 2009

we are blooming!

As I was driving to Dallas this week I noticed the start of blossoms on the Ornamental Pear and Eastern Redbud trees! The flowers are short lived but North Texas is covered with pink & white trees in the month of March!!! Tulips and Hyacinths are also showing their flowers! Spring is here!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Texas morning ~ California afternoon

Good Morning Sunshine!
Looking out my front door!
Walking in the early "morning" wakens me to it's beauty!
School Bus & Children & Country, Oh my!
My California Shabby Chic Bench now lives in Texas!

In Southern California the fog usually doesn't burn off until about 11am
In Texas it burns off by 8am

Ornamental Kale or Cabbage Flower! North Texas winter flower!
Cabbage Flower looks really pretty growing along- side Pansies. They both can take 30 degree temps and frost! Amazing!
Looking out my back window!
Waiting for the afternoon sun
Waiting for the Sunset

Oh Yes!
Sharing my love for California past - Looking at my front door

Where roses grow all year long!
This is where "Shabby Chic Bench" used to live!
Back View of the Mountains!
I love to see pictures of where people live. This is such a beautiful country and every state has it's own charm. I have been blessed to experience life in three different states in my lifetime. 

Friday, February 13, 2009

be my valentine!

Happy Valentines Day!!
1. All Dolled Up, 2. Chocolate Heart Cookies, 3. Chocolate heart on a pink gerbera daisy flower for you! (square), 4. Happy Valentine's Day, 5. Heart and Pearls, 6. rose cupcakes, 7. My Entry in Marilyn's Valentine Book, 8. crown princess margaretha, 9. ♥ my heart is yours

A little eye candy for valentines day! I borrowed the photos from flickr to create this mosaic. If you would like to visit the photostreams of the talent you see above, please click on each link provided!

Below are a few items that can be found at Victorian Trading Company

Everything has a romantic, vintage touch: gift cards, address labels, e-cards, garden, fashion, collectibles, reproductions. You can go to their link and request a free catelog.

The Little Big Book of Roses
A gorgeous, chunky book for the rose-lover...jam-packed with legends, funfacts, recipes (rose petal scones, rose syrup, rose preserves...) and crafts, poetry and rose-themed excerpts, tips, and countless practical and fascinating text. 7 in.. 352p.

Organic Lip Balm
"All the Better to Kiss You With..." Chai Mandarin, Lavender Vanilla and Pepperminty....no artificial anything in three varieties of delectable kisses.

Rose Wellingtons
This beautiful pair of galoshes will trod dutifully through the garden sod and puddles...wipe clean and they’re new again. Sizes 6 - 10 (no half sizes). 14”

Wreath Bust
They appear to have stood witness to a dozen decades of harsh winters and mouldy springs. Their weathered charm appeals to the antique-loving individual who dreams of days spent in Tuscany and Proven├že. 16”.
I hope you enjoy checking out this romantic catelog!
Until next time ~ Cheryl

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Sunday "Date" Day- Lakeside

Sunday's date day was in our town. (1) We live just outside of town. The town is a beautiful lakeside community....if you remember in my "about me" I have to live near water. Growing up in the Great Lakes state and living in California, it was a must that moving to Texas I would live in a lakeside community. If you know nothing about Texas, know that it has some 6,000 lakes! Yes, there are lakes in Texas. Our lake is about 22,000 acres large. So, this Sunday we stayed in town and went to the harbor! Oh, before I go any further, I want to let you know that I was tagged by dear Dixie at French Lique. So I am going to list my 10 or so things about me that you may not know, here in my Sunday Date post!

This is the gorgeous fountain at the harbor that overlooks the lake. It was a cloudy, windy, balmy Sunday.
This is what I saw when I looked up. There was a father & son taking advantage of the wind - kite flying! (2) I loved flying kites as a child and young adult. Haven't done it in a long time.
When I looked down, this is what I saw. The fountain's water runs down these rocks to recirculate. The way they designed it gives you the impression it is running right into the lake! Very pretty! (3) I am a "fire" sign. Leo. I really like fires, always played with them as a kid. Always got yelled at, "don't play with matches, get your finger out of the candle, stop poking at the fire - you'll burn yourself. " Love to sit in front of a fire and feel the warmth on my face. But I am more drawn to water than even fire. Water puts out fire. Wonder what that means about me (?)

This is looking at the fountain from the bridge that is over the rocks pictured above. So guess where we are going next! .......... To see this move: Gran Torino - with Clint Eastwood. I am not Clint's biggest fan, but he does make good movies. (4) I run to Robert DeNiro movies. Back to Clint, he directed, produced and starred in this movie. I even think I heard he wrote the song. The movie takes place in my hometown, Detroit area, which was once Polish Catholic (my family heritage) territory. It focuses around a 1972 Gran Torino and a Korean War vet that tries to reform his neighbor, a teenage Hmong boy. This was a perfect choice for us today, since it was about a classic car (for hubby) and reforming gang activity (for me). If you have read my profile you will see that almost all my favorite movies are "love stories", but my second favorite: "no nonsense - getting the bad guy". Third favorite: psychological thriller. Comedy is my last choice, because it has to be a really well written comedy, such as (click here). Gran Torino is a drama film but it has a lot of "chuckles" in it, to lighten the mood. Thumbs up on this movie and way up on the song!

If you know me, you would know that (5) I am a crier. I cry at anything that touches my heart. I cry every time I hear or sing the National Anthem. I cry whenever I hear children sing in a performance. I cry when I look at someones wedding pictures. I cry at the end of a movie, even if I have only seen the last ten minutes. I cry if you cry. I am a crier! I did not cry during this movie or as it ended. Not until the credits rolled and Clint started singing this song. Then this guy sang the song after Clint.......We were the last ones to leave the movie so that I didn't walk out embarrassed. Or embarrass my hubby. Not sure that anyone else was crying. If I know a lot of others are crying, I don't mind walking out. But if I am the only one. I gotta sit until I am done ~ and try to look like I wasn't crying..... So, this guy's name: Jamie Cullum singing Gran Torino - click to hear and watch music video - see if it touches your heart the way it touched mine.

Of course after the movie we were hungry. (6) We hardly ever buy anything to eat at the concession stand.

Here is another thing about us. (7) Whenever we go out to eat, it is ALMOST ALWAYS - Mexican!! We LOVE LOVE LOVE, Mexican Food. I would say 98 out of 100 times, we go Mexican. This is our very favorite Mexican Restaurant. And it is almost always "chicken & steak fajitas" for two!!!! (8) We are such creatures of habit. That is what my sister-in-law calls us. When I find a good thing, I stick with it. (9) 30 years married to the same man.

So, here it is. Chicken & Steak Fajitas. This place has the best homemade flour tortillas too!!! Oh my!!!! The only other homemade tortillas that compare are in Old Town San Diego- don't remember the name of the restaurant, but they make them in the window, in the event any of my California readers know which place I am talking about. Now that is a long way from Texas!!

We still get to see seagulls. First time I saw a seagull in North Texas, I thought "what the heck?" I didn't realize they hung around lakes. I thought "sea" gull..... SEA, salt water! Nope.

By now, the sky was getting darker. I loved the look of the fountain against the stormy sky. Next stop.....

Hubby, got coffee. I got magazines! He always shares his coffee with me. Here is the thing about hubby- LOVES STARBUCKS! Every gift he ever gets. STARBUCKS GIFT CARD! That's it. Again, we are the creatures of habit couple.

Guess what I picked up?

Had to get the new issue of Artful Blogger and Romantic Country. So many blogging friends made it in this issue of Artful Blogging. If you have gotten it, you must have met my sweet and talented friend - Curious Girl Lisa ! Some of her photos are on the front cover. (10) So, truly, proud of her!~!!

I hope you all enjoyed going along with us on date day! I want to remember my Sunday's with hubby ~ so that is why I journal it.... and I am happy that you want to come along and maybe learn a little more about me & hubby as well as what we do living in the Dallas area!
Next, I am suppose to tag a few people. I am not going to tag anyone in particular, but if you would like to be tagged and list ten (10) things "the blogging community does not know about you" on your blog, please play and mention you were tagged by me!

:o) ~ until next time my friends ~ Cheryl

Saturday, February 7, 2009

the fix......

These are "not so pretty" pictures (like I usually like to post) but I want to show you the process of fixing this mirror that I bought last weekend in Canton. If you read my Canton post, you know that I bought three of these mirrors, all the same. This one was for $12 dollars, but it had a piece missing. So with that said, you can turn up my music and maybe it will be more pleasing while following this post.
~remember, you can click on pictures to enlarge...usually :) ~

I decided to go to Michael's and purchase some clay to make a mold for the intricate pattern.

This is the one I chose. I have never worked with oven bake clay, but it looked like it would do the trick! I divided Sculpey in half. Half for the mold, and half for the "piece" I was going to create.

First I warmed the clay in my hands to make it malleable. Then I put it over part of the pattern of the frame and pressed down to create a mold.

A mold was created about the size of the missing piece. No "exacts" here. Since it is oven bake clay, it had to go into the oven at 275 degrees for fifteen minutes. This allowed it to harden.

Once out of the oven and hardened, the mold looked like this! Not bad!

Next, I used the other half of the clay and put it in the area of the missing piece. After fitting it in that space, I started trimming it off the top and sides to get it - to what seemed like the right size for the final piece (length, height, contouring). I just eyed it. Again, no exacts.

Ok. That looked pretty good. It fit in there good. The height matched the height of the rest of the frame. I contoured the sides down to "sort of" match the rest. No exacts here either. Then I gently pulled the piece out. This piece goes into the hardened "mold" that I created.

I layed the new, soft, piece into the hardened mold.

Like this. Then I pressed it gently into the mold in order to fit all the "hills and valleys" of the pattern. I just kept pressing gently until I felt it was all in there - real good.

Then I had to gently pull it out of the mold and try to keep it's shape. From pressing it in and pulling it out, it became a little thinner and a little longer. That was ok. Remember, no exacts in this project!

All I did was cut off the extra. Like trimming the dough of pie crust when you put the rolled crust into the pie pan! I'm not a baker, but I have made a few pies in my life and watched mom make MANY, MANY pies
(in case you wanted to know how I knew about this trimming process)!

After the clay was trimmed and was fitting "fine" in it's space, I got out my handy dandy wooden orange stick. This was the "crafting" time. The artist coming out! I just started moving it around, creating some of my own little dents and lines. Remember, no exacts, just artistry at it's best. Fun!

And, here is what I got! What do you think?

I thought it was good enough, especially since this mirror is getting painted white for my bedroom!

This piece needed to go into the oven too. Same as the first piece. But when I took it out and went to fit it in the space - it seemed a little swelled and it was rubbery. So I quickly pushed it into it's place on the mirror, before it started to cool and harden. Not anticipating this, I then quickly ran to my "girly" toolbox to grab something heavy to put on top of it - and hold it in place while it cooled.

Ok, I am embarrassed. This is my tool area in the corner of my pantry.

But everything I ever need is right at my fingertips in this corner. My toolbox has been with me from the very beginning of my Cottage Charm/Shabby Chic days (see my first two posts). Oh, speaking of Shabby Chic, did you hear about dear Rachel Ashwell? She had to file Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. What the heck is going on here. All our magazines out of publication, and now Rachel. Dang, this is really scaring me, it is all so sad - but things will have to get better in the times ahead, it will just take time .......................Well, back to the toolbox, I bought it at a garage sale back in the 90's. It was either a man's tool box or fishing box, I can't remember. But it got a coat of shabby pink paint and some hand painted rosettes. I've never changed it. I love this toolbox! I have so many memories of so many creations! Anyway, I am taking way too long to tell you about my toolbox when I have to get to the hammer that went on top of my "cooling" piece!

Like this!

Once it cooled, it fit perfectly in place and now all it needed was a little "Liquid Nails" to glue it in for life!!!

And here you have it. A fixed mirror frame! All it needs now is some white paint and then it will get hung on the wall above the sweetest little desk that I can't wait to show you! It won't be long. So don't forget to check back! I hope you enjoyed my little tutorial. I was learning as I was teaching, but it was fun and I am very happy with the results!
Thank you for visiting ~ Cheryl

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