Monday, December 22, 2014

It's all about the babes.

Last year I thought I was so clever when I fastened my vintage deer
to the mirror on my end table with carpet tape to prevent our little elves
from carrying them around the house.  Brilliant idea, don't you think?

Well, I'd say a certain 2 year old outsmarted me when he picked up the deer
with the mirror still attached!

Last year.

This year.

Now I'm another year older and wiser so I'm placing my treasured items out of reach.
Our side table is sporting a new look with some baby rattles I found in the bottom of a drawer.
  They add a nice pop of Christmassy colors and they're meant to be played with.
  The coasters, on the other hand, will be tucked away before the troops arrive.

Looking into our front entryway from the living room.

I unearthed this vintage corduroy baby bunting
made by a St.Paul, MN company and old crocheted wool cap
while we were Christmas shopping in Duluth the other day.
 It's a Christmas selfie.

Is this not the perfect spot for Miss Mousie to welcome our little guests?
She is a treasured gift from Tracy that I selfishly keep way up high.
I made her a mini pennant banner out of sheet music and construction paper.

In the living room:

My collection of angel bells float on a cloud (and out of reach)
 on top of our piano in this corner of the room.
There are jingle bells for each of the kiddos on the round table.

The sweet couple I found at the Grand Rapids flea market last summer
seem to be begging a young family to move the piano to their home.  Soon.
hint hint

Once I find a spot that I like for my Christmas decorations,
I tend to keep things the same year after year.  Also, I was too lazy to
photograph the whole room, so I'm slipping in a few of last year's photos.

The only changes this year are the plantation shutters I installed
last winter, AND I've actually wrapped all the gifts and
they're under the tree already!  Go Vickie!

The armoire holds my very dated CD player that I hope makes it through the holidays!
The disc drawer was stuck and when we googled how to fix it, most of the YouTube videos
 said the same thing;  "Why bother fixing these things that nobody wants anyway?"
 Hey buddy, I still want mine!!  I do not want to learn any new technology.
The new latches have proven to be childproof.  :o)

Mack likes to entertain us by wearing the clogs
and doing a little song and dance number.

In the dining room:

I've only made a few changes from last year.

The room now feels finished with the addition
of plantation shutters and curtains.

The glittery tree brings out the glitter in our ceilings.  :o)

I placed my conservatory on the dry sink
instead of the hot cocoa station, which I moved to the living room.

When the sun goes down......'s just the right height for little ones to peer into the wintry scene
 which is safely enclosed behind glass.  I'm not so sure those sneaky
little elves are child friendly.  Look at their shifty eyes!

A few turns of the key and this church music box
plays Silent Night while my choir of angels sing along.

As the weary children are carried up the stairs to their beds, an old shutter
on the landing holds a frosty wreath and message for the night.

Sweet dreams!

And once the children are nestled all snug in their beds..........
Let the games begin!

I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas,
and for those of you who also celebrate a Christmas birthday,
(we've got 2 here) Happy Birthday, too!

*I'm joining the parties at:

Mod Vintage Life Mod Mix Monday
Cozy Little House Tweak it Tuesday

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Keep calm and merry on.

You'd think that after painting our dining room
 in December of 2012, and our living room in November of last year,
I'd know better than to start painting our kitchen the day after Thanksgiving,
  but with a 5 day break from work after Turkey Day, it seemed like
the perfect opportunity to quit thinking about it and  just do it!

I've learned that there is one upside to painting during the holiday season.
I'm motivated to get it done quickly!  I couldn't even think about taking out my holiday
decorations until I finished painting and cleaned up my mess.

There are obviously lots of finishing touches to be done, but as long as
you're here, I'll take you on a quick holiday tour of our repainted kitchen.

My valance has been removed in favor of a display shelf
over the window.  It still needs trim added to the edges, but that can wait.
As for anybody sitting directly under the shelf, I've supported it
from above with heavy duty L brackets secured with wall anchors.  No need
to worry about a soup tureen knocking you off your chair.

I hung the green cabinet back on the wall for now, but I've got a wood cabinet
 in storage that I'd like to give a try after the holidays.  I'm not worried about
the dozens of holes I'm making in the walls, because I'll be tweaking
the wall color after I repaint the cabinets..  The current cabinet color is not bad in the
 daylight, but when the chandelier is on they appear to be chiffon yellow.
 No likey.

Do you see what's new in this corner?

The Major Award I chose for 35 years of service at work!

I was hoping for 5 new windows or a spa bathroom with all the amenities, but
 since they weren't listed in the Major Award catalog, I picked a high-tech appliance instead.
  Being the technologically challenged person that I am, it took me 2 hours
 to make my first cup of coffee on Thanksgiving morning!   Believe me,
 I needed my morning dose of caffeine after bathing a frozen turkey in the kitchen sink
 'till the wee small hours of the morning.

*Note to self:  Next year buy turkey in time to thaw before the holiday
or perhaps buy one already cooked, stuffed, and artfully arranged on a platter.

I treated myself to a bottle drying rack from World Market so I could
add seasonal color to this corner of the kitchen.  The red and white striped bowl
 is a steal for only $3.95 at Crate and Barrel!

My sterilizer cabinet is fully stocked with my collection of what I thought
were child size Santa mugs.  I was recently informed that they're actually nut cups. Huh.
Let's see.  One for every nut in our family.

As for the juggling pins?  Being the fitness fanatic that I am,
I like to work on my biceps while the roast beast cooks in the oven.

I've had this old wood shelf tucked away, knowing someday
 I'd find the right spot for it, and now I have.  This is my favorite thing in the kitchen.

Do you remember my green spice cabinet?

I had my handy assistant strip the finish off, only to reveal the u.g.l.y.distressed finish
that I somehow forgot was under the paint.  He tried sanding the dings out,
but whoever was assigned the task of distressing the cabinets at the factory
 must have been thinking about her ex-husband at the time.  Those dings
are clear through to the other side!

Anyhoo, it's now been painted with homemade chalk paint
made from one of my oops cans in our basement.  I'm trying to
get away from my matchy-matchyness, but it's not easy
for a Gold Personality like myself!

Around the corner near the back door the shelf holds a pair of deer
that I made way back in 1986!  I made the sign a few years later.

Next to the back door.....
This photo of my sister, me, and my brother was published
in the Hanna Miner, around 1964.  We're testing out toys at
our small town hardware store.

I'd love a vintage bread board for the kitchen, but until I find the right one
 (or maybe 4 or 5) Arnold Ziffel will do.  snort snort

During my post paint cleaning frenzy I found an Etsy gift card given to me by
our daughters.....who knows when!........and used it to buy myself this ironstone
platter that came all the way from Hawaii!

  Mele Kalikimaka!

Above the stove I hung my old window screen with a seasonal message
spelled out with aluminum letters that are used to mark telephone poles.
For some reason, they don't make the letters X, Y, and Z so I simply
chopped a leg off a K to make the Y.  It's a little wonky, but it works.

Even though I stuck magnetic tape to the back of the letters,
occasionally they'll drop into the dinner I'm cooking, but as the very wise
 Julia Child said,"If you're alone in the kitchen and a few aluminum letters
 fall into your beef stew, who's going to know?"

I strung a few jingly bells onto wire and threaded the wire
through the screen for a little holiday bling.

Well, I've missed joining all the holiday parties out in blogland,
but I was on a mission to neutralize our spicy kitchen before Christmas this year
and there are only so many hours in a day to do it all.  Now I've got to finish shopping,
 wrap presents, dream up a menu.......

Thanks so much for visiting and
Merry Christmas one and all!

*I'm joining the parties at:
Savvy Southern Style Wow Us Wednesday
Knick of Time Vintage Inspiration Party
Mod Vintage Life Mod Mix Monday
Cozy Little House Tweak it Tuesday

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Winter whites.

I took my sweet time deciding whether to paint it or leave
it "as is", but in the end white paint won out.

If it were hanging in a bright white kitchen, I'd have left the pretty weathered wood,
 but this is where it lives and the wood finish just felt dark and heavy.

 I simply painted it with good old-fashioned white semi-gloss paint.
  There's plenty of texture under the new paint to show its age.
  I picked out the knobs at Hobby Lobby to go with the old wood finish,
 but I think they work fine with white, too.

I brushed a combo of rust and brown craft paint over the new chicken wire
to make it look as old as the rusty hinges on the doors.  It only took about 45 minutes,
but it was tedious work that would have taken 5 minutes if I had done it
before I stapled it to the doors.  Hindsight.

I found an old pink sewing basket to join a faded quilt on top of the cupboard.

Since it's the holiday season, I glammed it up a bit with
teeny tiny 1 inch trees I found at JoAnn Fabrics.

 I glittered the trees, glued a wee jingle bell on top and set the trees
 on old spools of thread that were left inside the pink sewing basket.
  Since I don't decorate with pastels anywhere else in the house,
 I had fun playing with them here.

Now it feels so much brighter in this corner of the room!
Our house is not large by today's standards, so every room is a
multipurpose room.  This is the Master Sewing Guest Room.

On the other side of the room........
This little dresser had been stripped of its original finish and was an 
awful shade of brown when I found it.  I painted it with yellow chalk paint
and propped a Christmas ornament on top that looks like a dollhouse.
It sits on my old pie crust table that I painted white last winter.

  I have no idea what possessed me to buy this at an estate sale
other than it's so darn cute!  It's hanging on the white door that was a victim
 of my accident with a can of stain this fall.  As you can see, all the stain came out
 and it's back to a nice crisp white.

Well, that's the extent of my decorating so far because I took on the
monumental task of painting our kitchen over the past 4 days.
I.  Am.  Exhausted.

It's almost done, but I had to call it quits because it's time to
deck our halls!

Thanks for stopping by!

*I'm joining the party at:
Mod Vintage Life  Mod Mix Monday
Shabby Story Creating Christmas
Savvy Southern Style Wow us Wednesday

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