Here I am with my best friend in the whole world, Renee'. It took me thirty-two years to find her! I used to hear the expression soul-mate and I really couldn't get it, then I met Renee`. I believe men and women are just too different to be soul-mates. So, ladies, if you have one out there, it will be a girlfriend.

About Me

My photo
I am fifty-eight years old and a happy empty-nester of three grown children: nearly 26, 33 and 37. My 33 year old daughter is married and gave us our first grandchild, a baby girl named Astrid. I have been married one time for 41 years so far. I am the sixth of eight sisters. I have done some traveling. My restless oldest daughter took me to New York, Paris and London. I love to scrapbook, do needle art, beading, quilt, sew, decorative paint, home decorating and anything else that I can imagine or inspires me after looking at a magazine, HGTV, or the web! I enjoy having internet friends and think of them as modern day pen-pals.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Never Say Never!

Four years! Where have I been? So many places and so much life has been lived.  A good friend told me, "All excuses are final!"  Since then I have been unable to invent one. 
So, no excuses, I'm so excited to be back and I hope some of you are glad that we meet again!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Honey, I'm home.

Wow, I've been away a long time and I wasn't even on vacation.     Like many of you I've been busy with the joy that can only be found in preparing for "back-to-school".  Colored pencils have given way for ink cartridges, yellow pads for copy paper and back-packs for messenger bags.  My baby, 19 year old Victoria, , is moving to her very first apartment.  She is excited and we are all excited for her.  For the first time she would rather shop for home decor than clothes and she dared to utter the words Martha Stewart.  We are enjoying the hunt for used furniture on Craig's list and she's discovered the magic of over-time at her job.  In the midst of all this activity I've tried to carve out the time required to complete my Alice in Wonderland Apron for the Hot Mama Apron Swap.  I had ordered my fabric and, of course, I miscalculated.  Actually, I didn't calculate at all.  As is typical of me I just looked on line, chose a couple of prints that I liked and ordered willy-nilly.  I didn't have a pattern in mind and in the end decided on an original design.  Nevertheless, with the closest fabric store 30 miles away, I chose to do creative design work.  I'm pretty sure I took out more seams than I sewed and I had to dye my own trim, but in the end I was very happy and I hope my partner, Kathy Fuller, is as well.  In addition we were to include three additional items.  I selected: 1) A mint-condition 45 RPM of Neil Sedaka's Alice in Wonderland  2) darling miniature cake candle for the tea party  3) AIW Hot Pad  4) Vintage Hankie 5) ribboned ring of skeleton keys.  I hope this reaches Kathy quickly and brings her the same joy I had creating it.  Have a great tea party Alice!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

I Built Them Myself

     This isn't my lawn furniture but, rather, my garden furniture.  I find it quite charming and I actually take pride in it.   I built both the bench and the chair with lumber salvaged from the fallen barn of a friend. On the bench is a galvanized double bucket with a single handle in the center, a gift from my best friend Renee', and, of course, the birdhouse on the chair is from other girlfriends.
     I built these pieces some time back so they're a little rickety but still, when I am in my garden, I am both in the company of friends and proud of my simple achievement.

Friday, July 23, 2010

The weeds faded in the beauty.

     Up near the Idaho border is a nice small town named Spokane.  It's Eastern Washington's answer to Seattle, without suburbs and everything their 3 million people bring with them.
     Nevertheless, business took me there today and just across the street from my meeting was this charming home.  I'm crazy for a picket fence and when combined with flowers my heart skips a beat.
     I walked closer as I fumbled around in my purse searching for my camera in an effort to take a few snapshots.  I will keep these images with others to daydream over on quiet afternoons.  
     The closer I got to the garden the more apparent it was how neglected it had become.  Still, as I stood there with the setting sun streaming through, the beauty of the garden caused the weeds to somehow disappear.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

From Me to You.

     This is a little piece of my summer.  I live in a small farming community in Southeastern WA, far away from Seattle, rain, crowds and, unfortunately shopping.  My county has only three towns and I live in the largest one with around 6000 residents and 50 miles from our county seat.  
     I'm not much of an outdoor girl but in the spring I like to get out and plant a few flowers.  This is my floral birdhouse, a birthday gift from friends a few years ago.  To assemble, I pound big 16 penny nails into the roof-top.  I remove bedding plants from their plastic containers and firmly push root side down onto the nails.  Turn plants at different angles beginning at the top standing up, gradually turning sideways until hanging varieties are facing downward.  After they feel secure, cover all exposed area with natural Spanish moss, this will enable the plants to both hold moisture longer between watering and prevent soil from eroding.  
     I usually plant two varieties of birdhouses.  The other style is deeper in the bottom and the flowers are planted around the base rather than on the roof.  I use the exact same method, focusing more on the hanging variety flowers.  This one I hang in my tree.  Particularly the roof style wouldn't require a special birdhouse, nearly anyone would work.  But, if you decide to create one of your own, they require more flowers that you might think.  So, save yourself an extra trip to the store and buy more rather than less, or just count off spaces on your birdhouse roof and it will give you a good idea.
     Have a summer flower kind of day.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Happy Birthday"Lucy"

In honor of her 46th birthday I want to introduce my baby sister, Patty.  She's Lucy & I'm Ethyl and in this snapshot we are at Disneyland, about six months ago. It's a "We took it ourselves snapshot", the type where you hold the camera out as far as you can and hope that you're both in the frame.  This generally takes us about three tries.  

Patty works for Alaska Air and a funny thing happened on our way to Orange County.  We were actually going to San Francisco. But Frisco was fogged in and the planes to Frisco were backed-up leaving us, literally, 45 seconds to decide whether to wait for a plane to Frisco or to book for Orange County.  Patty had never been to Disneyland and we cracked under the pressure.  Okay, it wasn't that dramatic.  It was more like: "What do you think?''  "I don't know, what do you think?"  "Well. hurry up, we have 45 seconds to decide."  "OK, Look out Mickey Mouse, here we come"  So, actually, it was quite easy.  Who wants to hang around an airport when you can just walk onto a plane---free?

Moving on....The reason we lovingly refer to Patty as Lucy is she frequently has some sort of scheme up her sleeve and I, foolishly, am always dragged into them.  Hence, I have been appropriately dubbed Ethyl.  One of Patty's favorite expressions is, "You got some splainin' to do." and, of course, any fan of the old I Love Lucy shows knows that Ricky usually ended up saying that to Lucy at some point during the program.

That was great for Ricky and Lucy but when Patty cooks up a scheme it usually begins with, "You can't get arrested for this."  Any sane person would run, particularly since she is not a lawyer, but faithful Ethyl is there for her every time.  That's why she's the baby sister and I'm the...I'm the, well, you know what I am and foolish just doesn't cover it.  But next time Lucy calls and says, "I need your help.", I'll put on my ever-faithful Ethyl hat, get into my blue Buick and be there for her.  

I hope she's right about that pesky little jail thing because I've been too close a time or two.  Smile.

Happy Birthday Patty.  Let's make it to 50 without jail-time.  Smile.
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Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Paper or Plastic?

I signed up for the paper bag swap--my first swap--with great excitement.  I tried to think of something new, marvelous, amazing.  Then, I went with an old favorite: a lunch bag scrapbook.  My partner was Sherry, designer of those darling maiden dresses.  The one thing I knew about Sherry was she liked Cowboys and I had a too-cute sheet of cowboy paper I'd been saving for a special occasion.  

I started with the cowboy paper on the cover.  I have a fun technique which is to spell my titles, in this case "giddy-up", in at least 1" letters.  I then cover the lettering with  FOIL Electrical Tape (I buy it at Wal-Mart $3-$5). I use a stylus to outline the letters and in this case I drew a lasso around the outside.  At this point I rub over it with dark ink and wipe it off with a tissue to leave shading in the grooves left behind by the stylus. On the inside I did a variety of pages including fabric covered and a pull-out page which can be a bit tricky.  I have a darling little rubber stamp that reads "photo here" which I confess to overusing!

But, as always, my favorite is what I consider my signature page.  A manila envelope accordion page with co-ordinating tags. It looks amazing (I think), but is really quite simple.  
I begin with 5 or 7, always an odd number, of small manila envelopes. Decorate with rubber stamps, inking, glitter or nothing at all.  Cut tops evenly creating five matching "pockets".  For a cute effect trim each successive pocket 1/4 inch shorter than the one before it.  Now you are ready to glue them together.   Glue each to the other securely down the center allowing room on the sides for "flex".  Finally, securely adhere the outside envelopes to opposite pages tucking the bottom deep into the "bind".  You are now ready to add your decorated tags remembering to trim each one to match the co-ordinating pocket.  The tags are fun for photos, quotes, show tickets or any memory you would like to tuck inside.

I've used this technique many times, always with a different spin on it, usually in altered books and I am always happy with the results.  If you don't have access to or simply can't afford the envelopes (which can be kinda spendy!), it is also effective to make mock envelopes from paper.  I have used this technique as well with equally good results.