Thanksgiving / Pre-Christmas Decor

With Thanksgiving next week and Christmas soon to follow I was ready to clear out Fall décor and start thinking about Christmas. Not quite ready to get a tree but wanting to start the Christmas cheer sooner than later. I love, love, love Christmas time and all my decorations and I only get to enjoy them for a month each year.
Here is my Thanksgiving/ Pre-Christmas mantel:
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Made these little mason jar snow globes last year with some of my grandkiddos:

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My bedroom retreat layered with quilts and pillows:

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So that’s a sneak peek into my home at the moment. As the Thanksgiving turkey is being made into leftovers the real Christmas decorating will begin with JOY !

Come back again after Thanksgiving and see my home glitter with Christmas cheer !

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Drying Hydrangeas

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Well it has been a busy summer around here and blogging has been low on the list of priorities for me. I hope to pick up where I left off and post more often.

This is the time of year where I want to hold on to a little bit of summer for a while longer and one way I do that is by drying some of my hydrangeas. I have found this is the best time of the year for easy and successful preservation of the lush blooms.

I have many colors and varieties in my yard and they change color as the weather cools and days become shorter. From vibrant blue to shades of green and lavender they hang heavy on the stems.

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I start by choosing blossoms that have been blooming for a while. I have found that new tender blossoms don’t dry and just shrivel up. They even start to dry on the plant if conditions are right. I cut the stem long enough to fit into my chosen container and remove the majority of the leaves if not all of them.

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Once the leaves are removed I place the stems in small amount of water. As the water evaporates the hydrangeas dry out and they last and last. I toss them when they get dusty or I am ready to replace them with something else. DSC_0043

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So easy and beautiful too !

Linda

PS: I saw they were selling a 3 stem bunch of vintage looking hydrangeas blossoms (same as I have shown here ) for $14.99 at Whole Foods. I think cutting and drying your own is a much better value, like say” FREE”. If you don’t have them in your yard stop and ask a neighbor who has a shrub bursting with blossoms if you can snip a couple, who knows they might just be flattered you think their flowers are worth preserving and share their bounty with you.

Window Trim Project Update

Have you ever started a project and then it creates another project and another project…. and on and on…….? Well that has been the case with my idea to add some more detailed trim to our home.

First having the front columns redone and while that was fantastic in the construction , they then needed to be painted and calked and while we were at it noticed other areas in our front entry that need some attention, like gaps that needed calking and areas that just needed repair. So far the columns are painted and the rest of the entry is waiting for touch up paint. I will say more about that in a moment.

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Now on to the window trim. While it took our contractor a bit longer due to weather and a change in how the bay window was to be addressed it turned out nice enough. Now came the time to paint the trim and siding that was replaced and also surrounding areas. Trim no problem, paint matched and went on like a breeze. Our siding color however…. not so easy. After living here 7 years and maybe initially the painters didn’t apply the paint very thick, and the fact that our paint color was discontinued(which they still have the color formula so it should match right?) and the company reformulated the base, needless to say it didn’t look exactly the same going on. It appeared lighter and so minor touch up of the calked areas made it look like some sort of camo/ splotchy disaster. Not happy! We waited a week to see if the humidity and temperature were affecting drying time and hoping it would blend it. Didn’t happen. So we ( I say we but I mean my dear husband since I can’t reach most of the areas and he is a much better painter than I), are in the process of repainting the entire deck area. Yeah, not what we planned to do for this simple “touch -up ” project.  So the entry will likely have to be painted more extensively than we had anticipated. ARG!

So here is the window trim project and the area around the deck we are working on:

Before :

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After:

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We’re getting there slowly but surely. We are not planning to paint the entire house at this point and hoping we can hold off for a few more years before we tackle that. As for now we just want to finish this phase and enjoy the rest of the summer without any more house projects. Is that even possible? We shall see.

Make it a great day!

Linda

Window Trim Project

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We’ve started another project that was on my ‘ home improvement to do’ list . This time it is trimming out the windows in the back of our home.

I think some builders cut corners with less trim work as to save money and knowing the house will sell anyway just trim the windows in the front of the house and not the back. That was the case at our house.

Front :

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Back:

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Somehow to me it just looked unfinished. We didn’t want to start a huge project but wanted to add some detail to the back of our house we thought this would help. So the project began yesterday.

Before:

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So far:

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This is just the beginning as we have 2 stories and the windows on the deck area to be wrapped and trimmed.

Here is where I need your help :

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We are not sure how to trim out this area. Sort of a bay window ( there’s a 3rd window you can’t see from this photo on the far right side) and the windows aren’t evenly spaced from the corners. I am thinking we take off the white trim and totally retrim it as one big window and then we add the trim on the corners as needed above and below the window trim. We would need wider boards to cover the spaces between the window and the corners and no siding would be shown in the window area. Does that make sense? I don’t exactly know how to describe it and really not sure that is the best approach. I could really use some advice, needed before Saturday as that is when our friend will be back to finish up. HELP!

A friend of mine has this around a group of windows at her house:

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Her home is one where they didn’t cut corners and the details are amazing. I am hoping for neat and finished with improvement from the current appearance.

Please post your suggestions and if you can attach a photo. I have searched Houzz and Pinterest and still can’t find a photo of exactly what I should do.

Thanks for any suggestions you may have,

Linda

Little Girlie Necklace Tutorial

Oh Pinterest ! What have you done to me! I can’t even begin to tell you how many things I want to try and do because of the door you have opened !

I know I am not alone in this explosion of creativity sharing craziness. Come on admit it you have your ‘boards’ and list of ‘to do’s’ also.

My daughter Brianna showed me this one on her list and I thought it would be fun to do together. However the Pinterest picture just lead to a sweet Esty site not a tutorial. As great as that was I wanted to make my own. So I headed to the craft store for the supplies and was ready and waiting when Brianna arrived to try our hand at making these darling Little Girlie Necklaces.

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Here are the supplies I purchased:

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Beads , any size I used 5/8″

eye pins1 1/2″

small rings

metal ribbon clasps

5/8′ ribbon

Instructions:

First make a chain of 5 beads linked together.

Thread eye pin through the bead , snip off some of the extra length of the pin and then make a loop on the straight end the same size as the existing loop. Do this to all 5 beads.

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Using a jump ring or any size ring you chose, connect the beads together make the little chain of bobbles.

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Cut 2 lengths of ribbon ( I cut 24″ each) fold in have.You can adjust the length later before adding the ribbon clasps.

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Attach the ribbon to the end ring and knot. Add a bow if you’d like. I tied mine and hot glued it on.

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Now attach the ribbon end to the metal  clasps with a crimp of the plyers. You can add the little hook as well it comes in the package with the clasps.

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So cute!

Caution: I wouldn’t let children under 3 wear it as it could become a choking hazard so keep that in mind.

I will be making these for Easter gifts for my little girlies this week.

Hope you will have fun making one for the little girlie in your life too.

Linda

linking to:

{Primp}

Spring Project : Porch Columns

As the sun shines a little more often and Spring is becoming a reality my eyes see all that needs to be done outside around here. It’s a bit overwhelming and the “to do” list could well out last any budget or time to get it all done.

So we decided that our front porch columns are one of the first things you see when you come to our house and they needed to be addressed.

First the house is 7 years old now and showing some wear in certain areas already. That sure happens fast! Maybe our climate here in the Pacific Northwest has something to do with it. A little too much moisture will effect the exterior paint and moss on the roof very quickly.

I have been looking on Pinterest  and Houzz to find examples of front porch columns that would work with the style of our house. I don’t want to start changing the style and get too elaborate but keeping it clean and simple.

I found these ideas:

Some are fantastic but a little too much trim for this house with out doing something different around all the exterior windows as well , not really ready to do that.

This is what our columns look like at the moment:

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To me they are a little small for the front of the house and not trimmed out very well.

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Here are some other pictures to give you a better idea of what I’m talking about.

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This next week they will be getting a little makeover and I will post before and after pictures when the work is completed. I am hopeful it will add greater curb appeal when finished.

This is what I hope they will turn out like :

Just a little bigger and trimmed somewhat minimal is what I’m going for.

I’ll let you know if this first of many ” to do’s” turns out as planned.

Have a great weekend and enjoy this sunny day!

Linda

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

DSC_0054Tis the season for Christmas my favorite time of year.

This year I have kept the decorating pretty neutral ,using a cream,silver,and green color scheme. Since we live in the Northwest greenery abounds and I have plenty of access to cedar, holly, boxwood , fir and pine on our property. I love the smell of the fresh cut greens and have them tucked in everywhere. I even added sprigs of rosemarry to the mix.

First of all I started decorating our mantel. It was inspired by the simple snow globes I made right after Thanksgiving with some of my grandkiddos. They are everywhere on Pinterest and inspired by Anthropologie’s version ($40). Ours only cost a fraction of that , as I had the mason jars and purchased bristle trees and snow at Michaels for 40% off. I think they were less than $ 2.00 each.

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This is how they look on the mantel .

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I must have changed the mantel arrangement at least 4 times until I was happy wirh it. Sometimes I think I can over decorate and it looks too busy and not restful and calming. So I take it all down and start over until it feels right to me. I was having a little trouble until I cut the greens and started filling in the spaces with the cedar and boxwood. Ahhhhh , much better!

When I added the greenery everywhere and it really warmed up all the decore.

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Nestled it between mercury glass trees and ornaments and it made all the difference.

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So if you can get out and trim a little greenery native to where you live, do it ! It may be just the finishing touch your Christmas decorating needs.

Linda

Linda

Polyvore

So this morning I found this fun shopping and designing website called Polyvore and I think I might be hooked. I wondered how people put together such cute outfits and posted them on Pinterest and now I know. This is my first outfit I put together in my effort to learn how it all works and I must say it is way too fun.  You may be seeing more of ‘MY STYLE’ from time to time once I get the hang of it. I suggest you visit the site and start making a style file of your own.
Have fun!
LInda
Pumpkin Patch

Sweater
$105 – mexx.eu

Dune flat knee high boots
$260 – johnlewis.com

‘Fall Decor’

Fall is finally in the air around here. The brisk mornings and falling leaves reflect the change of seasons beautifully. This morning’s sunrise was no exception. Simply beautiful! I couldn’t help but pause and thank God for the beauty of His creation.

My home is also starting to embrace the change of season, as I bring in the fall harvest from the garden and incoporate it in my interior decore’. Sunflowers , pumpkins, squash of every color adorn my table , mantel and surfaces around my home.

Keeping it simple but still warm and inviting. Snuggle up as the evenings begin to chill and pull a faux fur throw over your toes.

A few Autumn touches in my kitchen as well.

I have given my entry a fall makeover as well, and I will share it soon.

Have a great day and maybe take a moment to step outside and enjoy this change of season and maybe bring a little of it indoors as well.

Linda

Early Fall Decor’

It’s a bit early for me to haul out the pumpkins or anything relating to October yet. I just can’t let go of summer time completely quite yet.

It has been sunny and warm so I am in a pre-fall mode. Packing away all seashells and all things beachy and embracing the change of seasons slowly.

Thinking more along the lines of early harvest, apples, pears and sunflowers.

My mantel is free from seaglass and sanddollars and is now holding a container of white hydrangeas and dried artichokes instead. An old board with the word ‘harvest’ written in chalk is there for now until the leaves start to change to orange and red.

Simple yet enough for now. I think sometimes less fuss makes for better design results.

My kitchen island hold limes and herbs with some lime-cilantro scented votives in my galvenized find from Marshall’s.

That’s just a sneak peek around here as I dust away beach sand and pack away any remnants of summer decor and continue the transition.

I hope to be more faithful in updating my blog as the events of the summer wind down and we all get back to our routine.

I finished a few projects and hosted a view events I hope to share in the days ahead.

Happy pre-fall decorating.

Linda