December 31, 2015

Happy New Year!

December 29, 2015

2015, It's A Wrap! Most viewed posts

(This post was featured on Our Home Away From Home, Jan 18, 2016)

I have been looking over the posts from this year and seeing what you all viewed the most. 

Actually, I just cannot believe another year has sped by us.

I am busy planning some future posts that I hope you will enjoy. 

And I am also tinkering with my blog header. I want simple, attractive, classic, but not distracting. We shall see. 

newest header creation incorporating the French blue that I love so much

For today I thought I would show you the most viewed posts for 2015. I was surprised by some. :-) I never know for sure which posts will pique your interest, as we all have different interests. 

I am a very visual person and rely heavily on photographs for my messages. I have thought of doing a few posts...with no words, except that my "gift of gab" is too strong. ha! (I am thinking that you all already know that.)

For the upcoming year...I have a relationship with HGTV-Sherwin Williams paints and I will be bringing you a couple of bathroom makeovers from my daughter's new (to her) house. We just completed the first bathroom...and the paint choice was perfect. are the top posts of 2015!

#1. Sitting Room Reveal
This is the most viewed post! You all enjoyed the changes I made to the sitting room. aka parlor, aka mama cave. 

#2. Floral Design on a Whim
This was a quick little project that shows how making spur of the minute decisions can work out well. I was totally surprised that this is the second most viewed post for 2015.

#3. The Dining Room Reveal
The third most viewed post...After a rug repair and other changes my dining room is finally finished. (until I dream up something else to do in there. :-)

#4. I Cried a River
The 4th most viewed post is about Mikey, aka Designer Dog. You all mourned with me as we had to say goodby to our dear fur baby Mikey. This is the hardest thing hubby and I had to do in 2015. If you want to read more about Mikey, just click on the link. 

canine degenerative myelopathy

#5. Mixing Farmhouse With Traditional
The 5th most viewed post...I learned that you all really love things with a farmhouse flavor as well as traditional flavor. And my blue and white porcelain pieces are a favorite of yours also. That means we are great decorating matches/friends. 

#6. Farmhouse or Country French

You all love my kitchen pics too! I am always changing up my kitchen table vignettes. 

#7. Fall Decorating With a Chippy Tray
This little chippy tray has been the star of the show on several posts. I was originally going to paint this tray black, but because so many of you like it the way it is, I have left it alone. No black paint planned.

green chippy distressed tray

#8. Decorating a New Bedroom, Part 2
I turned this bedroom upside down. ha! It is son's room when he visits...and it was just blah. It had a pine twin bed, and boy stuff in it. I decided it was time to fluff this room. I brought the white furniture up from the basement and kicked the pine bed down to the basement.  He did not seem to mind that I put the white beds and chest into the room...and made the room more presentable. I picked up inexpensive coverlets and a couple of small lamps to finish the room. The windows will stay "un" draped. 

Neutral Bedroom

#9. Farmhouse Table, and There Was Light
You all love my farmhouse table. It is an old table that we have had over twenty years and probably needs to be refinished...but you all love it just as it is. The queen Ann chairs are Pottery Barn in a painted black finish.

#10. Housekeeping Tip: Washing Windows
I showed you all a super easy way to wash windows. I hope to do more Housekeeping posts in 2016.

#11. The Drapery Reveal
My favorite drapes were remade for our current downsize. I love how they turned out, and so did you.

thibaut drapery fabric

#12. Look What Followed Me Home!
This was an impulse purchase under $20.00. Many of you told me you would have bought it too! That made me feel better! :-) We all need support.

large amber glass jug

If you get lost as you navigate around the blog ...just go to the sitemap tab at the top of the page, or the list of topics located on the bottom left side of the blog. 

Thank you for being a part of my house adventures and antics. I need you more than you know! I am not taking this empty nest, midlife stage of life "sitting it out." I am opting to do more creative things each day. And I am so glad to have you here with me. I am always reading and researching (an academic life activity) and love to share with you. 

When I was teaching I would tell my students to not be afraid to ask a question for fear it might be silly. If one person has that question others might have the same question/thought. 

So...we are all in this together. One foot in front of the other. We are marching forward in our lives whether we are 30 or 60. And for you younger gals...we older gals still feel we are 18 or 20 in our hearts and minds. Like books, our covers may be a little frayed or wrinkled but don't let that put you off. We have more confidence and perhaps more daring attitudes that come from living life, rearing families, and navigating careers and marriages.

I recently saw this poster online somewhere and the message really spoke to me.  Is this you too?  I hope I live long enough to be old and feisty at the same time. I am headed in the right direction. ha!

I am taking a mini break for a few days to catch my breath and have some R and R before New Years. Back in a few days!

Happy New Year!

Thanks for visiting,

Linking with
Dwellings, the Heart of Your Home, Make it Pretty Monday
Cozy Little House, Tweak it Tuesday
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December 25, 2015

We Wish You a Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone! 

For just a little bit more Christmas spirit today I am giving you a visit with my Byers Carolers collection. I only have a few...but there are hundreds out there!

I hope they bring a smile to your face as you look at them. The designers/creators of these "people" are very attentive to the costume details. 

The carolers' mouths are open because they are "singing." You can insert any song tune you want and it seems to fit. But mostly they want to wish you a very Merry Christmas. 

(The photos in this post have huge file sizes, so that they could be the best quality. The bad news is that it takes a few extra seconds to load those huge file sizes. Please be patient. Thanks.)

The first lady is my grandmother character. She is dressed in the familiar red and purple. Could she be singing Oh Come All Ye Faithful or Ave Maria?

In this image you see the mother and daughter up front.  They are wearing matching wool skirts, and maybe they are singing Joy To The World.

Or maybe Oh Little Town of Bethlehem

Here are the mother, father, brother, sister, and dogs. The dog on the left of he photo represents our earlier set of paws, Duke, while the dog peeking into the lower right represents our boy Mikey, who died in August.

Here is a pic of the father, little brother, and puppy. All are singing their hearts out...maybe Silent Night.

I have not figured out the song for this golden to sing. Is there a song about "bacon?" Do you have any ideas?

The grandparents join in the chorus with The First Noel. Look at the detail of their clothes.

We have a toy maker too!  I think he is singing Jingle Bells.

I am not sure who this guy is, but he is bearing gifts and fits in with my caroler family.  Could he be singing We Three Kings?

Or maybe he is singing Oh Holy Night.

What Child Is This ...could be the song they are singing now.

Here is a quick rear view of the clothing.

I think the Little Drummer Boy is so sweet.  And he must be singing The Little Drummer Boy.

The hunt/equestrian couple and fox are back. 

I believe that they are singing Silent Night. must be Christmas. All of the carolers are out and about the house. 

Which tune will you be humming in your head the rest of the day? Have a great one!

I want to wish each of you a very Merry Christmas and best wishes for a Happy New Year! 

I also want to thank each of you for following my blog and investing a few minutes of your day with me. I truly appreciate your loyalty and friendship. I look forward to our friendship continuing in 2016! 

Merry Christmas!   Thanks for visiting. 

Until the next time,

Sharing my posts with these blog parties...    
Ms Toody Goo Shoes (Sat Linkup)
The Everyday Home Blog, Share it One More Time Inspiration Party (Sat Linkup)
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Dwellings, the Heart of Your Home, Make it Pretty Monday (Sunday Linkup)
Marilyn’s Treats, Over the Moon Monday (Sunday Linkup)
Between Naps on the Porch, Met Monday
Coastal Charm, Show and Share Monday
Julie’s Creative Lifestyle Blog, Cooking and Crafting with J and J (Monday Linkup)
A Stroll Thru Life, Inspire Me Tuesday
Stone Gable Blog, The Scoop, Tuesday
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Savvy Southern Style, Wow Us Wednesday
Marilyn’s Treats, Wonderful Wednesday
DIY by Design, Fall into Fall Party
21 Rosemary Lane, Share Your Style Party (Wed linkup)
Marilyn’s Treats Thursday Favorite Things
Rooted in Thyme, Simple & Sweet Fridays
Oh My Heartsie Girl
The Boondocks Blog, Sweet Inspiration Friday 
The Everyday Home Blog, Share it One More Time Inspiration Party
Ms Toody Goo Shoes

Linking with
Designthusiam, Share it one more time party, Saturday
Sweet Pea, Best of the Weekend
Sits Girls Saturday Sharefest
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Life on Lakeshore Drive, Bouquet of Talent Link Party
Savvy Southern us wednesday

December 24, 2015

Christmas in the Dining Room, 2015

After having a meal in the dining room I clear off the table and put either my monster flower arrangement back or create something new. This time it is something new. 

Since it is Christmas and I am "moving and shaking" things up, I came up with this simple tablescape for our Christmas day dinner.

I used things I already had around the house. A taupe linen tablerunner. (I showed it to you in November.)  Two small Christmas trees in simple galvanized buckets. (I have had them for years and years.)  My everyday dishes. (Mikasa Italian Countryside) Oneida flatware. Greenery. Votives. (All of these have been in various posts.)

The silver tone of the galvanized buckets plays well with the posh silver ornaments I put in my tureen. I am using the opposites attract method of styling. 

The tureen is from the Thistlewood Farm ironstone collection. You all know, Karianne. The platter is an old one from WalMart about five or six years ago. 

The tureen has a mix of mercury glass balls that I have collected over the years along with silver plastic ones. 

I am always mixing cheap and collectibles. Often times it works just fine. This time it does.

I decided that this centerpiece arrangement would be nice to leave on the table for our family Christmas dinner. 

So I got to work creating a casual table setting for Christmas day/evening.  Candles and all. 

You know, I had forgotten all about these red Lenox salad plates. I did not use them at all last year or the year before. I just forgot that I had them. ha! Do you ever do that? :-)

I picked them up at Belk years ago. They layer so nicely with my Mikasa Italian Countryside.

The red borders on the Lenox plates make the table setting very festive. Otherwise the table colors are very neutral.

I have never invested in "Christmas" dishes...thought I have seen several patterns that I think are pretty. I really like to collect splashy salad plates. 

I just go with white dishes and then jazz up a place setting with a pretty salad plate. 

Salad plates are fairly inexpensive...and they can serve as nice snack plates for cocktail parties, birthday parties, etc. 

Here is an overhead view of my pretty tureen and greenery. No flash, just the candlelight with my camera set for low light/night. 

My family is used to me...I have candles out during the Christmas season! 

And besides, everyone looks so pretty by candlelight! 

I just realized that I took my photos before I put glasses on the table. There is time though. 

This gives you an idea of our Christmas table. We usually eat mid to late afternoon. If it is dark at 4:00 like it has been then we will have candles. If it is a bright sunny day I will probably not use candles. There are those "rules" you know. :-)

Here are some last minute additions/changes to the table setting. I added simple water glasses, round green mats under the dishes, chunky green pottery candlesticks, and red napkins. 
No more changes now! I am heading off to bed. Ha! 

This will be our simple table for Christmas when my dear family gathers round. I feel such peace when my kids are home with it used to be when they were kidos. Where does the time go? This is the first Christmas in a few years that both of our children will be home on Christmas day. I am so thankful that both will be home this year. 

I hope you have a nice Christmas! 

Thanks for visiting.

Joyeux Noël mes amis!

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