Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Happy 65th Birthday To Me !

I was going to work on my mosaic table today.
It is on the deck.
What do you think?
It looks like winter, huh?
That is not snow, it is hail.
We have had so much rain and hail, of late,
my flowers are suffering...
Hopefully, this afternoon, it will clear up and I can do what I had planned!
In the meantime, I will share with you a few of my joys today...

Many, many greetings from wonderful friends via email and on Facebook...
one from a schoolmate I have not seen in over 45 years! 

Isn't this wrapping and box just gorgeous?
It is from my dear friend, Bonnie
She gave it to me when I was in the valley but I saved opening it until today. I am glad I did.
The beautiful box alone
This beautiful piece of china was wrapped 
inside the bag, at the back of the box. It is
a piece of Bonnie's mother's china she inherited.
It is Haviland and the pattern is Pink Spray.
Bonnie knows I have been doing mosaic.
This plate will not be cut!
Other goodies inside the box...
Sweet little bird candles, shell measuring spoons,
lace paper edging, and those little dishes you see..
they are actually measuring cups! Now aren't those
the cutest... 1/4 to 1 cup. Darling!
Vintage Shade Pulls
These also came from Bonnie's parent's home..
I tell ya... she must love me a whole lot...
I adore her but I am not sure if it were the other way 
around that I could part with these. They are so precious, just like my friend.
My sweet handmade card from her.
There were other treasures that she knew I would love but I edited some of them but they did not show up edited when I went to post ( remember...my husband updated my IPhoto and I still am not sure how it all works )
Another precious handmade card arrived from Dianne, who lives in TN 
Can anyone guess what this is?
It arrived from my book/magazine/loving reading friend Janice
along with these
Look at the Fire Up Fat Burn
and Woman's World...
This morning I weighed less than 102 pounds...
My friend's gifts all reflect their personalities.
I am so lucky to have each of them in my life.
And this is the present that made me cry...
And my husband held me.....( which, of course, is the best gift of all )
It is not from him... He is having my mother's Schwinn bike fixed for me to ride.....at my request... He also gave me a beautiful card that also shows up sideways, even though I edited it... I will someday learn this new IPhoto!
This present, which is on the right of the photo above is from my dearest and oldest friend, Suzanne... 
We have been friends since our sophomore year of college.
It is framed as you can see...
and this is what it says...

Dear CeCe,

We surely had no idea where life would take us...
Back in the days of dreams and dates and sleep-overs
Shoe shopping at Cain Sloan
"Fun Nights" and "hearts" at B.S.U.
Floating down stream at Fall Creek Falls
Starry, starry nights
Bridesmaid and Run-away Bride
My favorite maternity dress-blue and white stripe
Student teaching with a diaper bag
Merle Norman make-overs and hair frosting kits
Masters Thesis and onion rings
-on a barbecue grill- in the rain!

Peaks and Valleys a continent apart-but still close
Loving, Losing,Loving again
Careers and Families
City houses-Farm house
Curtains and Recipes
Long phone calls
Precious visits
Your wonderful cards and notes
My rambling catch-up letters: few but full
Grown children-Grandchildren!

Golden Years
Cross-country treks
Antiques and "junk" tied to trucks with "hog racks"
Having the time of our lives!
Mexican beaches-Whale Watching-Sunset cruise
Porches and cottages
A place in the sun

Heartbreak and Hope
Grief and Grace
Another chapter-Another Start
A quiet strength, a wider reach
A deeper faith, a fuller knowing
And We, like that "chippy" paint we love so much
Have a new beauty now
Crafted of a lifetime of experience and relationship
Of sharing, and growing and loving

Thank you my dear friend
For all that your friendship brings to my life
I am looking forward to what comes next!

Tears again as I wrote this...the words of my dear friend giving me a
 Heart warming...
 Endearing gift of love......................

How sincere I am when I say Thank You for loving me as you do.....
Each and every one of you...

In a recent email and I am paraphrasing....my friend Janice had received a Thank you note. The message read something like...
 Thank you for loving my best 
 and for accepting the rest....
 With those words I will close....

Sunday, July 29, 2012

The Process

The title of the post is supposed to refer to the process of my mosaic project. Unfortunately, for me, it has also been a process of trying to figure out upgrades to my computer. You see, last night, my husband, on his own, decided to upgrade my operating software to Cloud. Then he decided to upgrade my iPhoto. He is now playing golf and I am now struggling with how to figure out all the changes that have been made to my computer. I hardly knew what I was doing before. I feel frustrated more than words can say. I am sure, at some point, I will get the hang of it, but right this minute... well... let's just get on to what this post was intended to be about!

I thought you might like to see the beginning part of the process for my mosaic project.
I first set different pieces of china out, on the table, I am going to mosaic.
I looked at it for some time and sort of got a plan in my head.

Next, I started cutting up the china I decided to use. When You have a piece, such as a dinner plate, one must first decide if one is going to use 
the focal ( the center of the plate )
or the rim. It cannot be had both ways.
If you want the focal and the rim then you need to have 2 pieces of china that are alike. If you want to use the focal, you slowly cut around the edge of the plate, until you have the center piece.
If you want the rim pieces the process is entirely different.
You start on the edge in the center of the plate, at the rim . You have the mosaic cutting tool on the rim facing the opposite rim and you cut. This should cut the plate in half. Next you do the same procedure cutting the plate in fourths, and so on. Then you trim the rim pieces until you have the edge you want. I will take pictures of this process later and post them for you to see.
The above pictures placed together are a product of this new  updated iPhoto and me not knowing how to use it. I would redo them but it would take way too much time and I would feel frustrated all over again.
The above pictures are of the cutting tool and the box over which I have cut and cut and cut the china.
The second picture is a prototype of my design. 
The more I looked at it, the more I just didn't like it.
It seemed too busy. So, I decided to do something different.

See the glove below...after cutting china for hours
my right hand got a big blister and was sore, sore, sore.
Why didn't I think of this before?
I got a glove and put it on my hand. It helped immensely!
This is my new design. I decided I needed to put a border around the outside of the table to match the border around the center plate I used. Before I had set the table with a salad plate above each dinner plate and rimmed all the plates. It looked too busy. Now I have dinner plates rimmed around the table and one focal dinner plate in the center. My friend, Kim, gave me the center focal. 
Wait till you see her storage space....
This will be a later post!

Another shot at the full design
and below
a shot of the center focal.
I just love it. The rim is from a different set
of dishes. Remember, I told you if you only had one
plate of a particular kind you have to choose the focal 
or the rim. In this case, the rim was pretty but certainly
not as pretty as the focal in the center of the plate.
I had purchased a set of the china that I cut the rim from. I just love it... Wide, beautiful embossed rim. I cut up all the dinner plates but one to get enough to go around the outside of the table, to match the center.
So, now I think I will go glue down these pieces. I will be using silicone to glue since, like the mailbox, it will be used outside.
Hope you have an unfrustrating Sunday!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Cottage This and Thats

 This is a picture of my new shelves 
my husband put in so I could use
my vintage shelves to hold mosaic dishes.
He did a wonderful job!
And this is a picture of some of
the squirrels work while I was away.
Three torn up cushions. This is the
 second time cushion covers have been
ruined. Yesterday I remade two of them.
I did not discover the third one until 
on the deck last night for Happy Hour.
I was not happy when I found the third
cushion. They have also been attacking
the Willow furniture. AAhhh... I used to 
love them...it is fast becoming a 
Love/Hate Relationship.
 Before shot of the ceiling in the
upstairs guest room.
The after shot....
Isn't it adorable? I found it at Ikea
thanks to my sweet friend, Kim.
She had purchased one for her new abode.
I think I might be going back to Ikea when
I am in the valley to buy another one for
a bedroom in the valley. I just love it.
It can be used as a shade, also. I purchased 
hardware that turned it into a swag. My
honey figured out how to turn it into a wall mount. :)
 Halloween in July
I have been working on packaging for
one of my Ortho girls...These are 
Halloween necklaces. They are packaged in
clear bags. I still have to ribbon them up!
Another part of an Ortho product..
These are sticker tags for a kit that
contains everything to make Oreo Pops.
I have covered up the name of the Ortho
with a vintage button card,just to protect the identity of the orthodontist for which these are being made. I sewed some vintage 
buttons on things yesterday so the card was conveniently on the table.
My dishes came!!!
I love them, I love them, I love them...
Yesterday I started playing around with
arranging dishes on the table to be mosaiced. I think I have come up with a plan. I am
now cutting.
 This is one of the sweetest
medicine cabinets I have ever
seen. The picture does not do it
justice. There is some etching on the glass
at the top of the glass. My plan is to 
mosaic the very top rounded oval. I am thinking about doing the bottom as well. I will have to see how it looks with just the top done. The paper you see inside will be removed.
This is the couch I could not resist.
I kept going back and looking at it.
It was priced at $350. I asked the mall
to call the owner and get the best price.
I have no idea where I am using it. I am picturing it painted and distressed in Old White chalk paint and covered in drop cloth material. When this will get done is questionable but I do not have buyer's remorse.
 These tables, however, I am still
dreaming about. See the insert that looks
like some kind of fake marble. Well, it
just lifts out. It would be very easy to
have a piece of plywood cut to fit the space
and then mosaic the insets..... Again...
they would be painted with chalk paint.
The end tables were only $45. and the coffee table was $55. Again... I don't have anywhere to use them really but they are calling out to me. I might have to go back and get them if they are still there the next time I am in the valley.

Guess I best get busy cutting china. Hope whatever your day holds it brings you joy!

Monday, July 23, 2012

How's A Girl To Choose?

My First Shelf of Dishes

I also got a new app for my IPhone called snapseed. It is a photo editing program for the phone. As you will see in these pictures I had some fun playing around with it this afternoon.

My Second Shelf of Dishes
These dishes I had in the valley. They were not a complete set so I decided to use them for mosaic.

This is another set that I already had. I bought these on one of my cross country trips. See the gold rim....I put one of the dishes in the microwave...need I say more? Poof... 
Turned into mosaic dishes....

Now we get to the recent purchases.
I bought these dishes from Merchant Square, located in Chandler, AZ. I got a great deal on them and what is a girl to do when there is a great deal on dishes?????
Buy Them!!!

This set is one I showed you in a previous post. It is very much like the other set I bought. I paid a lot more money for these though.
I bought this set for the rim of the dishes. I might try to sell the focals on Etsy. I also bought this set at Merchant Square last week.

I got several plates and salad plates of this pattern. They were marked half price and the beginning price was just $2.00 per plate! Yippee....
Another set bought at Merchant Square last week.

Just look at the beautiful embossing on the edge of this plate. I got this set for the rim also. Another Merchant Square find. When I went to check out I got a surprise. This dealer was having a 25% off sale..... another yippee!
It certainly is a good thing that my husband built us shelves in the laundry room while I was in the valley. It freed up my vintage shelf pieces to hold all of my dishes for mosaic...
I bought another beautiful set on eBay... I better get to cutting some time soon. I will share a picture of those when they arrive.
It seems I have dish fever!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Before Pictures of Our Dream Beach Cottage

This should be interesting.
My friend, Dianne, and her husband, Chris,
 from Nashville,
used our condo, in Destin, FL
over the Fourth of July week.
She kindly asked me if she could
post some pictures!
Thank You Very Much!

I have not posted before and after pictures yet.
I plan to take some more After pictures when we
go there in October.
For now, though, I thought it might be fun, 
for you, to look at some of my before pictures and
then jump over to Dianne's blog, here, ( I give you the link again at the end of this post, in case you want to wait until you have viewed all the before pictures I am sharing) and see
the after pictures she took.
I tried to coordinate some before pictures, 
in order,
but I am sure it did not turn out very cohesive.
You will be able to see the magnitude of this project though!
I was so happy to hear Dianne's appreciation of all
our hard work to make this our dream beach cottage.
I hope you will enjoy seeing it and visiting my friend!

 First up is the entryway...
See the brown screen door..
It now has a Victorian White Screen door in it's place.
I will take a picture in October and post again.
The flooring throughout the condo is Bamboo,
except for the bathrooms and it is a tile. I used this same tile as the back splash in the kitchen.You will see pictures of the flooring when visiting Dianne.
You will be seeing Bead Board with Board and Batten on top of the Bead Board, in the entry way.
 This is the Great Room..
It looks small from this angle but it is actually
a very nice size. The wall
you are looking straight ahead at is the wall
the television is on above the console featured on Dianne's blog. The wall to the right is the wall the very large vintage window from PN is hanging over a couch. I purchased the piece in Nashville when visiting my dear friend Suzanne. I think I posted the remake of all the furniture before but I will give more info or repeat myself ( which I do quite frequently these days!) in October. We had the beams white washed. We added bead board inbetween the beams and painted it Sherwin Williams Rainwashed. 
 In one of the first pictures on Dianne's blog you will notice
what looks like a cabinet door. The electrical box was originally in the closet below. We had it turned around to 
face the foyer. I had it framed out and ordered a cabinet door to match the cabinets in the kitchen to disquise the box. We did this so we could move the heating and cooling system over above the water heater. We needed more room on the right hand side as we were about to open the kitchen up to the great room.
On Dianne's blog you will see a picture of a big opening with corbels on each side. That is the opening of which I speak.

 This is a picture of a soffet that came down between the dining area and the kitchen. We removed it, as we added a couple of feet onto the kitchen.
 Here you are looking at the original kitchen from the dining area. See those cabinets... they are all gone... and some of them were not replaced. Let me see if I can explain some of this.  I don't think there is a direct picture of the kitchen, as it is now, on Dianne's blog. The cabinets all along the wall on the sink side are gone. We moved 3/4 of the kitchen out towards the great room a couple of feet. We did this by taking out another closet that was next to the closet with the hot water heater in it. That means there is a small jog right across from where the fridge is located. I chose Martha Steward White cabinets and where that jog is I put a floor to ceiling pantry. We replaced all the appliances and used Butcher Block counter tops. I used a Farmhouse sink and it is located ,in the kitchen, right below the picture you will see of the opening with the corbels.
 Picture of the ugly, tight, shower in the Master Bath
 See all of those closets on the right hand side and the left hand side. We got rid of one of them on the right so we could install a jacuzzi tub.
We got rid of the ones on the left so we could install a dresser I refinished with double sinks. You will see a picture of this makeover.
 This is a picture looking out of the Master bedroom. You can see into the hall bath and into the foyer... You can also see the useless wall extension. We removed the wall extension.

 Hall Bath
Dianne has several pictures of the makeover of this bath.
 Hall Bath
Removed the light fixture and 
got sconces which I painted and waxed with
Annie Sloan Chalk Paint...
As a matter of fact, this entire condo has
many pieces painted with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint. I
love painting and waxing with it...
no priming or sanding required...
Yep, you read correctly...but I am sure most of you know about it already as it is all over the blog world. I found out about it from Miss Mustard Seed.
 Dianne shows you a picture of the vintage dresser I refinished to house the new sink and hardware. I took the mirror off of the dresser and hung it on the wall for the bathroom mirror.
We covered up the wallpaper with vinyl beadboard and painted it Sherwin Williams Rainwashed, which matches the beadboard used on the ceiling in the Great Room.
All of the walls in the condo that do not have Beadboard or Board and Batten were made smooth.
We covered up the popcorn ceilings with Ceiling Tins.
 We raised the ceilings in the hallway and bath to give the place a more spacious look. It made a huge difference in the feel of the area.
This is looking out of the Greatroom area down the hall.. See that door on the right... that is the closet we took out in order to increase and open up the kitchen.

And, for now, that is it. I loved seeing our condo featured on Dianne's lovely blog. I am so looking forward to being there again and enjoying drinks on the deck.
I am also looking forward to taking some more pictures to share. Looking at makeovers is one of my favorite things to do. Thanks for stopping by and visiting with me. Now, hop on over to Dianne's here!

I am linking up with Feathered Nest Friday