Saturday, September 28, 2013

Want to see more fall?

Continuing on with my fall décor...........

If you haven't seen the first two posts you could find them here and here


"Cinnamon, nutmeg and cream - warm, flavorful hues all, and as soothing to live with as soft music and lamplight."

Summer has stepped off the stage in favor of autumn, and we have gotten a hint of an approaching mellow season, even here in central Florida.

You saw a teaser of my new pumpkin for 2013, in one of the first posts. Here it is proudly taking the spotlight with the stacked pumpkins I made three years ago in the background.  They are sitting on the end table along with.......

........three little candle holders that I found at Goodwill.

On the floor just to the right of the table is a little antique stool holding a vase of fall branches.

Here it is with the lights not burning.

I printed out one of my favorite fall sayings and put it in this lacy frame. I was hoping to insert a new quote for this year but haven't thought of it at the right time.

Along the wall just inside the front door is this table which usually gets changed out for the different seasons.  I just have the very small foyer and the wall next to the foyer painted in this color. Because of the flash it looks a bit more yellowish and brighter in the picture.


  While unpacking fall things I stuck these dried botanicals into the brown pitcher, until I could do something with them or stick them back in storage. Later, I decided I like the look just as it is and found a spot here on the table.
Looking straight down on it. I know they are supposed to be taken apart and used alone but, I like the clumps.
Some of you will remember I got this last year at a fantastic sale price. It has been here in the foyer ever since.  Accept my apology for using too many "I's" in this post. That is always a challenge for me when writing the script for my blog. My brain is working slow today but, I (one more!) will work harder on that next time. Could you do me a favor? I always put the script below the pictures. Would it work better if it were above? Does the spacing between pictures work good for you? Do you like the larger size pictures or would they work better smaller?
 Stopping here and will probably take you into the kitchen next time.  Yes, I have a few autumn looks in there, too.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The September Girls Celebration

Along about the year 2000 four good friends, all with birthdays in September started meeting together one day in September to eat, exchange gifts and have a great time celebrating our friendship and birthdays. We became The September Girls. After a few years one moved away and after that two others were added to the group.  It has become a very special time for all of us. This year we chose to meet for lunch at The Cheese Cake Factory. Today was the day!

We have all moved towards selecting several little gifts for each other instead of one bigger gift. That is not a rule or anything, it has just worked that way. Most of those have ended up being Fall themed.  I am showing what I selected to give this year. I won't go into all the details but this was not my best year for 'gathering and presenting'!! Have you ever started a project and sort of had a plan and nearly nothing works like you had hoped?  Many weeks ago I purchased four of the flip top boxes showing above. I thought it would be nice as part of the gift but, planned to find two or three things to go inside. And, I would use the boxes instead of bags. While in the same store I bought Fall sprigs to dress up the top of the box. And, a different ribbon to replace the one that looked like it didn't belong on the box.

I tried to remember each time I was in a store to keep this project in mind. Nothing was jumping out at me as a good thing for the boxes, nothing! Except a few things that were way too expensive. As the time got close I started really searching. I think I went to about every store that I ever go in around here and never found anything I wanted to give. Finally ......

....just last week while leaving JoAnns I grabbed these bird towels from the "as you wait in line, be tempted by some of these items" display. It is really prettier than the picture shows. Later in the week I was in another store and settled for one quilted, red, leaf shaped, placemat for each. I could think of several ways to use just one.  I didn't get a picture of it but you can see a little bit in the above pictures . After that I decided to bake some of the cute little pumpkin cakes I have made for Thanksgiving for the last two or three years and place them in a nice cellophane bag - tied with a pretty ribbon.

One of the ladies does not have a house of her own (lives with her sister who is part of the group). I don't give her household items but try to find something more suited to her interest and life. She loves to read and likes novels about the Amish. I selected one of those and also found the little crocheted dog ornament. And she got one of the pumpkins. The book turned out to be about a quarter of an inch too large to fit in the box - aaaaaargh!

Then early this morning I realized my cellophane bags were the wrong size - two small for the pumpkin cake! Aaaaaaaaaaaaargh! I had plain white Styrofoam bowls and used those instead - not the look I had envisioned. Was out of saran wrap! Aaaaaaaaaaaargh! Used foil. The bowl didn't fit into the room left in the boxes so I had to mash two sides and force them in! Aaaaaaaaaaargh! None of the lids were now lying down flat! Aaaaaaaaaaaaargh! Remember I am that lady who is very visual - I want to do things that look pretty or at least look like some planning and design went into it. 
Oh well, I didn't take the dead ends and detours too seriously, and I am sure it didn't matter to any of the other ladies. We met and had another good September Girls Celebration! We sure filled in our space around the table with sixteen big gift bags (I ended up stuffing my unclosed boxes in mismatched bags with no ribbons)  and five celebrating women! And, look! The Cheese Cake Factory saw fit to design our little curved off-set with a bunch of mirrors to magnify the color and celebration! I came home loaded with some of the neatest things! And, the words in the cards that these friends truly mean - priceless.


Friday, September 20, 2013

Going Full Fledged Into Fall

I have had fall things out for a few weeks already and have only posted a little glimpse on here. I think it's time to start going full fledged with fall! Yes, it is time to show this little nest in the colors of fall.

There is far more concentration of Autumn here in the desk, in my sitting room, than the rest of the house and is a good place to start. This area kind of takes the place of the big mantle in my other house that I used to love to decorate for the seasons. This picture is made with a flash and the next without. This shows more true colors but the next one is clearer.


The next several will show close-ups of the same area. I love my little timed candle.


The wool pumpkin that was new last year from Coldwater Creek. It was a much better price than their clothes!

And, a paperback book pumpkin that I made two years ago. Always birds! I rotate some of them according to the seasons.

I have several acorns made of different materials and sporting various fall colors. I haven't seen many acorns I didn't like! The squirrel looks like he is thinking, "it's too big to be true!"

A night shot with candles burning.  I only use battery or small tea lights on these wooden shelves.



Very nearby is this little half table.

I love the little paper bird, also from Coldwater Creek.

A large book with an Autumn tag I made last year resting against it.
The same page shown without the tag. I always have open seasonal books displayed in this room. Picmonkey was not cooperating this afternoon or I could have improved a few of these pictures a little.

This is a start of showing my fall décor but there will be a lot more to come.
Have you found yourself with crisper, sweater weather and wanting to have one foot inside and the other still out in the garden?
Even here, in central Florida the sunlit days are becoming shorter and I'm not sure I would call the air crisp, but the nights are cooling down a bit and most days start out pretty pleasant. I am wanting to feel cozy in some autumn clothes or under a snuggly blanket sipping a good cup of hot apple cider.

Monday, September 16, 2013

New in the Guest Room.....

I was having thoughts of needing to look for a new bedspread for my tiny guest room. It was not so much of wanting a different look as wanting a bedspread that could be left on the bed and be used when the room is being used. The two I had before were so very heavy and needed to be removed when the bed was being used. The room is so tiny that there was no good place to put the rolled up spread. And, with all closets filled to the top, I don't have any place to tuck another thing out of sight! So, one day as I walked through K-Mart, not looking for a bedspread (who would there?) there it was!  I knew I needed to have a white one, light weight and inexpensive.  I liked what I was seeing but since changing the spread wasn't an urgent need I left the store without it. A few weeks went by but, my thoughts kept returning to that spread I had seen. After all, it really did fit the requirements.

Heading out to the store I had decided if they still have one in the size I need, I am getting it!! They had just a few of them left and at first I thought the queen size was all gone but, did find one. I like the old style chenille look and it's simple design.  It was not a package deal - only the spread.

I am still using the shams and pillows and throw ( at bottom) that I had with the old spread.

I like the combination just fine.  The shams still work partly because of the pictures just above the bed and the white spread works because of the white curtains on the one window. I did bring the crocheted pillow out of storage to add. My sister made it years ago and I am glad to put it on display again.

How do you like my red shoes parked by the bed?  I think they will stay here until the rare occasion that I might wear them or a guest needs the room.

This is the top of a chest of drawers, with a red runner. This is sitting at the foot of the bed.  It is so difficult to get any good pictures in this room because of lighting, mirror reflections and lack of room. Of course, there is just one light sitting here. I always question what different viewers see in the pictures, using various electronics, some probably quite small,  to look at the blog.  

A little whimsy never hurts, and the picture puts a touch of red on this wall. The doll is reading a good-night story to the bear. As you can easily tell, I am not using current, trendy things.  I use mismatched things I like and have.  There is not a speck of Annie Sloan paint to be found anywhere in my house. Although I wouldn't be against using it and I do have painted wood pieces, here and there.
Nothing but mirrors on this wall. I decided to show the other things in the room even though some of you have seen them a few times before. You may see a shot of this again later after it gets a sprig or two of Christmas greenery.

On the dresser to the left side of the old suitcase is this early picture of my mom and dad and a ribbon embroidered velvet bag.

I don't know what the intended purpose was for this brass stand, but it seemed like the logical thing to help show some of my small glove collection.
A folded throw, a baby dress and an old hand mirror - inside the suitcase.

On the back of the open suitcase, an old gown with a pretty crocheted bodice and a plain cotton bottom.

 The other reason I chose the subject for this particular post is the other new thing that none of you have seen. I needed another clock like a dog needs ticks!!! But, I didn't walk away from this oval black and red clock while browsing at Home Goods one day. I didn't even think of using it in this room when I purchased it but this seems to be the best place for it. 
 I pulled the chair out from under the sewing machine cabinet so you can see that the bottom has a needlepoint covered cushion that blends with the other reds.

The picture makes the red here look a little lighter and brighter than it looks in the room. I love the side to side oval shape and of course, the colors.

Finally, a velvet heart pillow hanging on the welcoming door. Now, all that is needed is an overnight guest(s) to be put on the schedule!  First come - first served!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Great Rewards After Hard Work

I can hardly believe it myself - the hours of hard work I have done in the yard for the last three weeks. 

 Most of the work was done in the back yard where, much of the summer was too wet to work in, or the mosquitoes were so bad I couldn't stand to be out, not to even mention the heat! Then it became such a jungle, just the thoughts of "taking it on" kept me from even starting. Oh, I was doing a lot of yard work but always choosing other, less challenging, areas. Yesterday, I was so happy with the progress I had finally made that I took my breakfast out..........

in the cool of early morning, to enjoy just surveying the neatness and change.  Nothing fancy on the table, just my usual cereal and a glass of juice.  This might be a good time to show what I mix together to put in my cereal bowl every morning.

I put all the contents of the two cereals, all the yogurt covered raisins, a few of the cranberries and an ample amount of the sliced almonds.

This adds up to my favorite cereal mix to date! Each of these cereals have quite a few good ingredients on their own so I am actually eating a lot of different things.  Recently adding the yogurt raisins really stepped up the taste!!!  Now, back to the garden..........

Until the day before, the rustic patio down here in this corner could not be seen.  The stepping stones making up the patio are in a low area and because of flooding and soil erosion, the stones had disappeared from sight with basket grass growing on them.  There is still what I call fine tuning work to be done but at least it is now usable!

This path had  been covered up with the Macho ferns. Thank heavens they are fairly easy to pull up. If you walk down the path it leads you to this area......

.....I wanted to show because of how it was highlighted by the sun. The little tea party fairies and ...... 

this angel occupy the area.  What you see on the ground here is the very low lying weed called basket grass I mentioned.  I love it for certain areas even though it is very invasive. It can be controlled and even edged.  It is better than having assorted other weeds or worse yet, just sand, where grass won't grow because of too much shade and occasional flooding.


I put a few sprigs of this Wandering Jew in the adjoining area and it has filled in another big area - also a good look back here.


And now you see the table in the distance looking back from the fairy and angel spot.

Along in the afternoon I took advantage of the little table again with a tea break and read a few pages in my book club selection for this month. I am enjoying this book and look forward to our lunch and discussion next week.

I even took a little time to do a few words in my crossword book. By now the "cool of the morning" has long disappeared and I am wringing wet!
There are always little rewards to be found as I put in the hard hours, here one bell-shaped blossom. I never can remember the name of this plant. The color is a vivid purple and the throat of the "bell" is very yellow.

A pretty collection of color here in an area that gets more sun.

At the end of the day as I was sitting at my computer in front of the window, trying to get my breath and wondering if I had "done myself in" working all day in the heat, I looked out and saw this swallowtail. It stayed still just long enough for me to get outside and take this one picture.  I felt so blessed to be able at my age (74) to put in day after day of hard work and reap such beautiful rewards!