Sunday, December 16, 2012

Sugar pies

Feeling guilty over having done nothing all day yesterday, I headed up to my work room and made this late last night.  I'd had a Sandy Hook hangover all day then thought I'd do something sweet with a children's theme.  Always keep children close, safe, and in our hearts.

Monday, December 10, 2012

The Reluctant Christmas Decorator is on Vacation

I used to decorate for Christmas when my kids were little.  In recent years holidays have just been my husband and his father, my youngest son, and me.  I lost the motivation to do much for the same crew every year.  Without going through the dreary list of last year's losses, we didn't have Christmas.  We exchanged a couple of gifts and had a good meal but no tree, etc.  We just didn't have the heart for it.  

Now with the top notch and window decor.
And a new addition; wings from Karla Nathan framed with old shabby frame by the tree.
This is a whole 'nother year though and I've got my Christmas cheer back.  Getting to have Thanksgiving with my family in Oregon just kicked things off wonderfully.  And having so many losses last year, we all need this pick-me-up.  Matt wanted a much bigger tree but I really like it.  We haven't even had time to put the top ornament (from Paul's family way back) yet because Paul and Matt put it on together and Paul's not even gotten home yet before I'm here ready to post!!  And a close-up of my really old macaroni ornament that I think I made in Brownies.  It could be that Miz Juney has one too since we were in the same den (is that the term?).

The mantle.  I can't stand to take this fabulous, huge photograph down because it's so fun to look at, but I did decorate around it.  I'm sure this all looks pretty tame compared to most people, which it is, but there aren't photos of everything up here yet.  Here's a little close up and a trophy, ornament match-up.
I even did a little on the staircase.  I'm not one to decorate every room.  I know lots of people who have multiple trees, like two, three, or even four. 
 I did put a Christmas hand towel in the powder room and the big gold bow.  I mean, I'm on fi-ya.
And even the master back got a little something!  Only 'cause I had something cute to put together.  I don't know if you can see my sweet little Santa in the trophy planter and, come on, pink.

And now for my motivation.  Here's the group who will be at our home for Christmas.  This photo was taken the last time we were all together, for my 35th high school reunion a year and a half ago.  And I haven't had Christmas with all of my children in eight years.  And this will be the first one with our Kristen and the first time she's coming to our home.  And she's never been here so we are so excited to take her to D.C. and show her around the nation's capitol and all the other cool stuff here.  I'm over the moon.  What a banner year for holidays.  Here's wishing everyone a wonderful holiday whichever one you celebrate!!!!

Friday, December 7, 2012

New Art for Doojies at The Pink Cabbage

 It had been a while since I had really made things for the shop.  I'd been working on school, having gone back to college this fall after 36 years.  Since I was almost finished with the semester and our big Pink Cabbage holiday open house last Saturday, I decided it was time to make some new things.  Above is my twist on toe ballet shoes, only made with antique shoe forms and dressed up with silk ribbon and flowers.

These, I actually made yesterday and packaged today.  These are cute paper hangers that can be used as an ornament or a gift tag (they are kinda like paper dolls); they are about 8" tall and cute, if I do say so myself.  They were fun to make.  Making and putting together the packaging was really fun.
I made these cute, again, ornaments or tags that are paper dresses attached to wire doll hangers by tiny clothes pins.  They are embellished with tulle, flowers, vintage pins.  Next to them are my "Wish Necklaces", they are little viles of "pixie dust" (glitter) and hung on a chain with a wish ticket and a paper flower.  The little girls love them.  It felt great to create again.  Shockingly, the academics didn't fulfill that need in me like I was hoping it would.  I get discouraged with my art because, though people say they love it, they're not too sure what to do with it.  Our shop is in a conservative area and I'm not quite as mainstream as some of the other women who sell better there.  I got a little discouraged last week but I just keep making things because it's me who needs it, maybe not the public (which would be nice-I need to turn over merchandise so I have room to make more), but I'll always need to be creative and it help me a lot with my little dark moments.  It's the one thing that I've carried around with me my whole life that I can turn to to distract myself and feel better about things-huge.  Thanks for stopping in!  Next up...getting ready for the holiday I've been waiting so long for...Christmas with all my kids!!!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Birthday Shopping in Oregon

Since my birthday was right before we left for Oregon for Thanksgiving, my mom promised me a shopping trip while there and boy did she come through!    She got me this faux leather vest that has ruffles on it and some cool zippers you can't see here.  She also got me a couple of fun things at a thrift shop.  But the ring in this photo was my favorite and she didn't had to pay for it.  It's my daddy's high school ring.  And it fits my ring finger perfectly; my dad was pretty trim (this is vs. me as a woman) in high school.  Anyway, I know you can't see it but it has "San Angelo High School Texas" on it and a cowboy with a lasso on one side.  Very cool, to me.  I'm lucky that I don't think I'll ever have to fight my sister or niece or nephew over my daddy's things like this high school ring.  The next big thing will be my dad's Aggie ring.  That's a big deal, as most of y'all probably know.  No one can wear an Aggie ring other than the person whose it is; one of the many, many Aggie traditions.  I got all my strong "Texan" from my daddy.  My mom moved around a lot when she was growing up and my sister doesn't have much sentimentality when it comes to Texas or A&M.  My niece and nephew haven't had much exposure to either so there's no sentimental feelings there that I know of.  For now, I am very, very happy with my new things but especially my "new" ring.  A piece of my dad I have with me all the time...what could be better?

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Kewpie Texas Ranger

This is my new pretty.  I call her my Kewpie Texas Ranger because she is a Kewpie doll and she likes sitting in my powder room in the silk flower with the real live Texas Ranger badge that my special friend, Nene, gave me one year for my birthday.  It's my tied-for-first-place room in my home along side my dining room.  Ha!, kinda hand in hand, eh?

Giving thanks especially after 16 years!!!

When we moved from California to Maryland 16 years ago I never imagined that it would be that many years until I spent Thanksgiving with my family again.  But that's the case so that made this Thanksgiving even sweeter.  Bittersweet, yes, too, as the main reason we didn't travel at the holidays was because my dear father-in-law lived with us and didn't like to travel.  He passed away last year, the day after Thanksgiving. Hence, the bittersweet.  But, moving forward, it was great to be with my "family of origin" on the best holiday of the year.  Above is my beautiful sister, Valori; her son, Aaron; and her daughter, Maya.  Maya was my first baby love; now she's married with two children of her own!  How time flies!!!!
It had been over four years since we had seen them at all; us having travelled to Oregon four years ago this last July.  Above is me; Ben, my niece's son who is six; and my 15 year old son, Matt.  Matt and I went to Oregon 6 years ago right after my sister and her partner, Courtney moved there and Ben had been born six weeks early.  Though a preemie he was full-sized and we thoroughly enjoyed loving on him; he was Matt's first baby love.  The next time we saw him was when he came with the rest of the family to Maryland for my 50th birthday in 2007.  The poor guy was sick the whole time he was here and I only got to hold him a couple of times.  This time he didn't remember seeing us four years ago.  He warmed up to Matt immediately but, by the time he warmed to me, he got sick and I still didn't get to love on him-poop.  At least he'll remember we were there and he knows who sent him the Buzz Lightyear costume a few months ago that he so loves!
There are so few photos here from our trip it ridiculous.  But Courtney's son, Jer, took an enormous amount of photos and I'm waiting, hopefully, to receive many photos from him that I can add here.  Here's one of our latest family member, Amelia, at almost 6 months.  What a doll.
These guys had a great time together; they played with that Nerf ball all the time...
...except when Ben wasn't feeling well which was off and on.  We left him the football that Paul and Matt had bought to throw at Beaver Stadium on their doorstep on our way out of town the day after Thanksgiving.  He had been in bed all TG day and Maya said this was the first time he had smile in over a day, when he got the football.  It ended up that he had Fifth's Disease.  Whew, glad we dodged that bullet.  They have all been spreading strep, colds, etc. since we were there and still are trying to all recover before it goes around again.
And speaking of the doll, Maya was the last girl who I got to dress up like a doll.  Amelia had just had a wet outfit and I got to change her.  It took me almost a half hour to choose this outfit from all of the adorable things she has.  This was definitely the last time she was going to wear these precious shoes; I had to pry her poor tootsies into these but they had to be worn!!
And then she konked right out after she finished her bottle. 
Maya works at OSU and we went to pick her up for lunch for lunch one day...
she showed us the sign above.  Michelle Obama gave the commencement speech in May and Maya had been the main person who made all of the arrangements.  The day before Mrs. Obama arrived Maya was put on bed rest because she was having contractions and she was too far from her due date to go into labor.  She was the only one from her office who didn't get to meet the first lady!
Right across the street from Maya's office is the OSU Beaver Stadium.  Paul and Matt had bought a football the day before just so they could throw it around on the field and here it shows they did.  Several touchdowns were made in only a few minutes!
Another overdue visit was with these guys.  Clifford, on the right, was a roommate of mine in 1978.  I don't think I'd seen him since 1980.  Mark and his wife, Cindy, live in Eugene as do Clifford, his wife, and children.  By happenstance.  Since reconnecting on facebook, I had found out that Clifford lived in Eugene; I had kept up with Mark and Cindy and had gotten to visit them when we were there four years ago.  All of us being from Bryan/College Station, Texas meeting up in Eugene, Oregon-it was so fun.
I forgot to show this picture to Clifford when we were together but I sent it to him via email.  This was taken on Thanksgiving in 1978.  My beloved daddy, Clifford in his beard, and my sister and her friend, Laurie, who had driven from California to surprise my parents and grandparents (I was in on it).  Time does indeed fly.