Wednesday, March 31, 2010

My Kitchen - Part 1

I thought I'd do a little segment on here - A Few of My Favorite Things - and go through some of the bigger rooms in my house.  Since my house is constantly evolving - things are different than the last time I posted.  Please enjoy my kitchen.

It's eclectic to say the least.  I have a lot of fun finds in here all mixed and matched together.  I have collections of old bowls, chickens, and old signs.  I love my kitchen.

My collection of hands - one is an old glove form & the other is giving an OK sign.  The chicken was drawn by Abbie - it's fabulous isn't it!

These are above my pantry.  They came from my Mom - and I believe from my Grandma.  I love them - they are little chalk figurines with hooks on them.  They are great!

This is above the fridge.  I found the giant fork & spoon & spray painted them a textured silver.  They are fabulous & so is that old chicken cookie jar & those orange tins!

Here are some old signs I have collected.  The fifth street carries on my collection of 5s - I don't know why I collect 5s, but I do.  The R is an old movie sign letter & the Small Change came from TJ Maxx.  The old jars are really cool up close & personal.

I just got this Oleo sign from my Mom.  It cracks me up.  I also am a big fan of small lights around my house so this beauty adorns my counter top.

My island post will come as Part 2 - it deserved it's own post!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Bright, Bright, Sunshiny Day!

Micah over at the The Yellow Front Door gave little old me an award!  Stop by and tell her hi.  Her home is more and more fabulous through each and every project she has completed & shared on her blog.  Her yellow door inspired my armoire redo here.

The sunshine award!

So I'd like to pass the torch onto other bloggers that comment on my blog so much that I blog stalk them in return!  When they post - it's a bit of sunshine in my day.  So thank you for all reading my blog & also posting about your every day lives - I enjoy you all so much!

1.  LeAnn at Vintage Sassy
2.  Julie at The Little Red Shop
4.  Tawny at A Beautiful Life 365
5.  Christina at Signs of Obsession
6.  Cara at Homspun Kitchen
9.  Jennifer at Mimi Bella Boo
10.  I don't know her name, but I adore her blog Little Bit Funky

Oh - one more thing - all of you comment for my Mom.  She needs a blog & has considered it.  Tell her to start her blog & share her fabulosity with you all.  She's the master of all things interior above my sisters and I :)

Monday, March 29, 2010

Carl the Cat

Prepare yourselves for the story of a cat.

My daughter truly forgets nothing.  She just turned 4 in December and never ceases to amaze me in the things she remembers.

Two years ago in June, I went rummaging with my Mom & sisters.  We stumbled upon a box of 4 adorable kittens, that were being kept in squalor.  It was terrible.  Being the pet lover that I am, I agreed to take a yellow kitten (because yellow tigers are predominantly male) home to Aubrie, age 2 1/2.

So I took Carl home.  He was covered in fleas.  That sentence is an understatement & he had an enormous poop ball in his tail.  So I bathed him forever & finally got the little guy cleaned up.  Aubrie (my mini-me) was instantly in love with Carl.  I wrapped him in a towel and she carried him all over the house & was in love with Carl.

At night, Carl went in a small cage in the garage.  After a few days, I went to the garage & Carl was pretty much lifeless.  I have no idea to this day why.  He was eating & drinking the night before just fine.  Then I put him in his cage for the night, and the next morning - he couldn't even stand - it was awful. 

So we lost Carl.  This is sad, but he was so sick that it was a relief.  We told Aubrie that Carl now lives in the trees.  She was just too little to tell her that Carl had really died. 

To this day - nearly 2 years later - she remembers Carl.  She talks about how "talented" Carl was.  I don't remember him being a talented cat, but apparently he was very talented.  She talks about him all the time - that he will come home and live with Maggie.  I just can't believe she remembers in detail - Carl the cat.  Considering we had Carl about 3 days before he was gone.  Amazing! 

Now she'd like a new Carl (we'd have to find a tiger kitten that looked just like Carl), or a fish.  Her "aminal" love never ends.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

My Boppy

My son has developed a new name for me.  That's right, I'm not Mom or Mommy, Boppy, or Ma-hee, like I've been in past years.  Recently, I'm Ma.  I am not sure where it came from.  Honestly, it feels a bit old for me - besides my Dad is called Pa & he's 50.  I'm a young'in at 27.

Picture by Pix by Jme

So constantly now he's saying "No Ma", "I love you, Ma" - he adds it basically to every sentence he speaks to me.  So I am officially now Ma.

It reminds me of the Beverly Hillbillies. 

Don't get me wrong - I used to LOVE that show when I was little.  Now that I'm older - I LOVE to load up my hubs truck just like the Clampetts, but I guess I'm yearning to be something other than a Ma.  I should be Mommy still - geez they grow too fast!

I had to share Aubrie's picture too!  Jamie was gracious enough to take pictures of kids with farm animals for a Relay for Life fundraiser.  They are fabulous!  It's also very obvious that my kids adore living on a farm - even though Everett is trying to wring the crap out of his chicken.

Check out that chicken on her head & the calf trying to nibble her bow - so stinking cute!  Thank you again Jamie!

Saturday, March 27, 2010


Oh dear readers, I forgot to update you.  After I found out about my precancerous mole, I had a second appointment with my doctor.  She had to remove even more skin & send that to the lab.  It came back good - no precancer - so we got it all!  I was so relieved! 

So in April I'm going to see a real dermatologist to get a full body checkout.

So dear readers - avoid tanning beds & put on the sunscreen.  It's really important :)

Friday, March 26, 2010

Busy Bee

I've been so busy lately, I don't know where I'm coming and going from. 

I'm working on Ethel Edith stuff for our spring show.  I'm judging cheerleading tryouts for the school.  On top of that I have some sewing projects, raising kids, keeping my house maintained & updated, plus all my landscaping goals!

However, with all I have going, I have a new project I'm so very excited about.  Please pop over to Ethel Edith to see pictures.  We are staging a home for one of our clients to prepare it for sale.  We're very excited, and we are having so much fun!!  I have personally always wanted 10 houses to decorate as I see fit, and now I'm getting the chance to do it.  So please stop by our other blog & checkout the first room - the bathroom redo.

We started small since we've never decorated someone else's home.  We had a small budget & had a great time shopping & decorating.  I strongly believe this bathroom is ready to help sell!  It's amazing that so many small details can really make a room feel more modern & appeal to all ages.

Remember to check back in at Ethel Edith often - we're doing her photography studio next & it's definitely going to be our biggest challenge!

Someone to Admire

My Dad told me to stop blogging about him...

but I won't do it. 

See this man.  This is the funny, thoughtful, super smart, and ridiculously romantic - mom adoring man that I can proudly call my Dad. 

He's a farmer, plumber, electrician, welder, carpenter, engineer, mechanic, tree enthusiast, Garth Brooks wanna be, poet to my Mama, book critic, mainly a Jack of all Trades kind of man.  Most recently he wants to be a butcher.  You didn't mis-read that last sentence.  My husband is drawing up plans for a 2 car garage sized butchering facility on the Fox Farm - oh how the ribeyes get better every year!!  The hats this man wears never cease to end!

That's right sisters - see that twinkle in his eye - that's all me!

I took this picture of him & just had to share!

I love you Dad & you can't make me stop writing about you and your ways!

FYI - a few more Stuisms:

Nipple - layin  (Neopolitan) ice cream - that cracks me up because that's just how he pronounces it, but it's so wrong!

That goes together like socks on a rooster - meaning that doesn't go together at all.

That's how the hog eats the cabbage.

He's about as popular as a turd in the punch bowl.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Shocked In A Good Way

I blogged about my anniversary Saturday, but I had a surprise I didn't see coming.  My husband usually lets me plan everything.  I plan our get aways, I plan our dates.  I'm an organized freak & I like to know what's going on.  So I had booked a babysitter for Saturday night.  We were going to go to dinner & the new Matt Damon movie - Jade loves his movies.  So I kept talking about where we should eat etc.  I had movie times - everything was pretty much planned except the restaurant.

Unbeknown to me, my husband planned a surprise date.  He told me weren't doing any of the above.  I was so confused - I thought maybe he wants to see a different movie - weird, but maybe! 

Then, he said he got us tickets to see Allegria - a Cirque Du Soleil event in Champaign.  He also lined up my sister Maggie to keep our kids overnight & got us a sweet hotel room for the night.  I was in SHOCK!  Literally shocked.  I probably still am.  We had an absolute blast.  If you haven't ever been to a Cirque show - you must go - amazing every time!

These two girls blew my mind - what an athletic and limber pair!

An actual trapeze act - one guy fell - thank god for the safety nets!

What a muscle!  This guy was just amazing!

The IHotel in Champaign - yeah it's nice!

So applaud my husband - he did an amazing job & I was so excited to get a romantic surprise!!

Also, a thanks must go out to Maggie for keeping our kids overnight & forcing Jade to become a romantic man (her salon is attached to his office so she's always in his business - I love it!), and for Mom for helping purchase everything so I - the organized freak - wouldn't see charges on our credit card bills & call in fraud!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


I am a bit of an obsessive person.  I can't relax until all my plans are done.  It drives Jade's nuts!

So in a matter of two weekends, I sewed 7 pillows, I painted my desk turquoise, I redid my master bedroom, I painted Everett's armoire gray, and I painted my kitchen table green.  On top of that, I put out my spring decor, cleaned all the brush out of my flower beds, and freshened up my front porch (the best I can without flowers).  Then, I went shopping & got my kids adorable clothes for the spring and summer.  It's amazing that I slept and ate huh!  Oh and did you know I work full-time?

I am a bit weird, but if I sit down on the weekends - I literally fall asleep on the couch.  I can't help myself!  So I putter around my house non-stop.  I think it's good to take pride in my house & teach my kids the things I know.  They love sitting around watching me paint & they already have a decorating & cleaning bug in them.  I have quickly learned its best to strip them down to their skivvies when I paint because inevitably - they get in the paint. So I let them join me and watch & they enjoy some how "not touching" the work, but getting it all over their bodies!  In all honesty - the times I'm painting with them we have the funniest conversations - my kids crack me up!

What's my next project you ask?
Well I have many!

1.  I want to paint my piano white.  It's from the 70s and in dire need of a make over.  White may not seem like me, but I'm digging it lately & with white woodwork - it will always fit in.  Besides - who wants to paint a piano and in 5 years hate it's color?  White is timeless.

2.  I want to put in either a paver patio or a stamped concrete patio off our back porch.  I want to surround it with herb gardens.  This is right off my kitchen so it'd be perfect!  Lucky for me - my cousins have a decorative concrete & masonry business & my Dad is part owner in a concrete business - score!

3.  I want to landscape our walkout wing walls.  I want to build a pergola or buy some type of gazebo with a chandy in the middle to shade this concrete wasteland.  I also want to put in some pea gravel for the kids to play in as well as a big fire pit.  This is our "party" pad - not that we have any parties, but still.  It's setup with icicle lights to give it some mood.  I bought those amazing galvanized tubs if you remember and I intend to do some work with some more galvanized items to really spruce it up this spring & make it feel less concrete down there.

4.  Jade & I want to build a potting shed.  It needs to be big enough to fit our mower, my lawn furniture in the winter & all my potting supplies.  I envision something really cute - red with white shutters & a window box.  I want it to look more like a playhouse than a potting shed.

Now a lot of these projects require help.  So I expect to get #1 done.  Then number 3 - I at least want the landscaping done.  #4 is really needed.  So pray the weather cooperates as does my husband!
So is anyone out there obsessive like me? Do you dream of a project & die of anticipate for the weekend when you can get it done?

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Pillows by Me

I have been having so much fun with pillows this month! Selfishly - none of these babies are for sale - they are all specially made by me - for my home!

I make envelope pillow cases. I seriously made 5 pillows the other night in maybe 30 minutes - awesome I know!  Sorry so blurry - I can't figure out this camera - always blurry without a flash!!

To give the solid pillow some pizazz I braided scraps of fabric & sewed them into a large circle & then sewed them onto the pillow.

For Trudie's dog bed, I created her some very special pillows. I topped off her smaller turquoise pillow with a T for her initial.

For our bed I did the same braided scraps technique to make a solid green pillow have a little something special by adding an R for our last name.

Monday, March 22, 2010

A Table for 6

I totally neglected you guys here. I almost forgot to get you a before photo! As you can tell - I had set it up and started painting when I remembered to get the shot!

This table my sweet Dad hand built for me the Christmas of '07. I adore it! It's a large harvest table that will seat 6 chairs, or 4 chairs & a long bench - he also built for me!

Originally I had painted this table black & stained the top. I have since decided to paint it a green tone to match my island.  I did the paint mixing in my basement with some blues & yellows I had on hand.

Once I put on 2 coats of the green paint - I really hit it hard with the sand paper - mainly because I wasn't sure about the color this time - it's a bit more sage than I wanted.

I really like the aged look I got from it & it actually goes quite well with my island considering I wanted a more kelly / cilantro green color.  Who knows - I may do a dry brush technique on it with a darker color in places - that may get me the island look I'm going for!

 Please forgive the picture from the fall, but I had to share this baby with you again.  It is one of my prized possessions at a mere $325!  It's truly from the 1800's - an old store counter.  The vendor had rebuilt the right side since it was attached to the wall - but you can barely tell - they were that good!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

A Dog Abode

Oh sweet Trudie! Her dog bed needed some love!

I spray painted it yellow & then scratched it up with sandpaper to make it look aged.

I took an old bed sham & that's her bed pillow. Then I sewed some throw pillows just for her.

She adores her bed - and truly sleeps in it!

Saturday, March 20, 2010


Jade is my heart. He is my first and only love in life.  I "met", this is a strange word to use when you go to a school of 400 students total, Jade on November 22, 1996.  I knew my best friend, Melissa, was hooking me up with him, because she was interested in his best friend Dan. 

Prom - May, 1997

I wanted no part of this plan, nor did Jade. The night I met him, Melissa & Dan planned a movie at Dan's house.  I sat on a stationary exercise bike seat for half the movie, because I didn't want to sit by Jade on the loveseat. Isn't that hilarious!  What an awkward girl am I that I literally sat on an exercise bike for over an hour to avoid him. It's hilarious! 

My College Dorm Room - September, 2001

Top it off with the fact that Jade always wore a flannel shirt in hunter green or Burgundy with some type of Nike shirt underneath, and what he thought were the coolest shoes ever - his shoendals.  Yes you heard me right, shoendals - his shoes/sandals.  They were hideous.  No offense to my lovely husband, but I really wasn't interested in him at all.  However, my other best friend Elly thought he was a "hot tamale" - which I didn't understand.  Why wasn't Melissa hooking Elly & Jade up?  She was right after all, and eventually, I changed my tun and thought Jade was pretty cute too.  Oh to be 14 again!

Our Honeymoon Cruise - March, 2004

So back to my story.  Jade finally convinced me to sit on the couch with him, I was completely awkward about it, but by the end of the night I was wrestling him and flirty in return.  The next day he asked me to go with him to a U of I football game, it was freezing, but with Melissa and Dan in tow - I agreed.  That was the first time we held hands.  He was really cute after all. 

Our Disney vacation - March, 2005

So I fell in love with this boy fast...even when Dad forbid it.  So fyi parents, don't forbid your children from the opposite sex, they will marry that person!  Dad only forbid it because Jade had a license & Dad thought he was too old for me.  After a background check with my cousin Drew, Jade was later approved.  Now my Dad adores Jade as his own son.

A Cardinals Game in 2008

I'm off on a different subject again - so sorry - I can't help myself! Jade was more interesting than anyone I knew.  He kept my attention, knew how to argue with me, but how to make me feel loved too!  I could spend hours on the phone with him, and I did.  One night while Dan was driving me home, Jade tricked me into my first kiss.  He literally said "Hey do you see that huge deer?" - I turned my head and got my first kiss from him.  Again, what a hilarious story.  This goes back to being 14 and 16 again!

4th of July, 2008

The rest is pretty much history.  We had a few breakups along the way - when you transition from 14 to adulthood, that's bound to happen.  However, we always loved each other & knew we were meant to be together.

My wedding set.

After 7 years, we were engaged November 1st, 2003 and wed March 20th, 2004.

He is my soul mate, my best friend, my partner in crime.  He is my brutally honest teammate.  Without him, I wouldn't have grown into the woman I am today - literally he shaped my life and who I am from 14 to my ripe age of 27.  He makes me laugh until I cry, and comforts me when I need to cry.  I'm truly blessed to have found a partner in life who is my everything.  He - so Jerry McGuire of me - completes me.

Fall 2009.  Here we are today.  13 years later and married for 6 years.

So today I wish my man a Happy Anniversary.  It's been 6 glorious years of marriage.  We only have 4 more & we're celebrating in a big way.  Mark my words friends, ten years of marriage will finally equal an amazing vacation for Jade & I.  To where I do not know, but we've made the promise - so Mom, Maggie, Abbie & Ruby - mark your calendars b/c my babies are coming to stay with you in 2014!  We're going to celebrate without them!

P.S.  I wish I could show you our scrapbook from 14 on.  It's absolutely hilarious & Jade & I were cracking up over ourselves.  Can you also tell that I like to change my hair a lot? 


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