Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Where Have I Been?

Way too busy...So much has happened over the weekend....

I abandoned my husband on his birthday and Jeanetta and I had a booth at HarvestFest in Hillcrest...
It was a ton of work and I didn't do that great on sales. But I don't think most people came prepared to shop really, and ironically I did really, really great at the Shoppe just 2 blocks away instead...

Anyway I do not think I am cut out for Craft Fairs. One of those things - like working in a coffee shop - that I thought I would like because I like to go so much, but in reality I am a much better customer than vendor...

Too much rushing and cramming to get things done, get everything all put up and then you have to take it all back down again. Too much tension... Maybe if I sold smaller things like jewelry it wouldn't be so bad, but for my stuff I haven't found it to be worth my time yet...Maybe not my thing after all... Live and learn!

Did I mention that it was my sweet husband Nathan's birthday and he was at home with the kids? What a trooper!

Have I mentioned that I am officially sick of orange? This is the problem with having to do things early for the Shoppe and Etsy. Later this week I am moving on to Christmas and some pink things. I am oranged out for a while. At least in crafting...
Maybe if the weather would cool down and it would actually feel like fall, I might be temped to back, but our weather right now is crazy and not fall like at all. Ack!

But despite the less-than-stellar sales, Jeanetta and I did get to take all the things we didn't sell over to the Shoppe so it is all decked out in Halloween finery...Won't have to worry about that again soon... And we did have a great time hanging out and seeing all our friends who stopped by to say hello and we got to finish the night by attending a fab fashion show of all local designers including the truly talented and amazing Korto from Project Runway...

Yes, that Project Runway. It was the most fun I have had in ages... We almost felt like we were on the front row at Bryant Park ourselves!

All of the clothes were amazing, all the designers super talented. I would love to be able to buy any of the their clothes...

It's nights like this that I am so proud and amazed to live where I live. The Little Rock/North Little Rock area may not be as big or as a cool as Austin or NY or Portland but for our size and our location we have a vast pool of amazingly talented and creative people. And we are lucky in that our community is insanely supportive of all the artist, musicians, small business owners,& independent restaurants around. Our little city is small but any day you can walk down to the Arts Center and see a Picasso or a Degas, or you can go just a few blocks in the other direction and visit a Presidential Library. You can eat some truly amazing food and never have to set foot in a chain, go to wine tastings, gallery openings, indie movie premiers, avant- garde theatre productions, or just go hear some great live music... it is a very cool place to live.

Got up, got to Church, had birthday lunch with Nathan's family - I ate way too much and it was super yummy.
Then some napping was in order, followed by some lovely clothing shopping with one of my very best friends Amy to spend my birthday money on some new work clothes!
Back home to re-arrange my closet to make room for new clothes and get rid of old ones I don't wear anymore, then to bed because on Monday I started my new job!

My birthday! Woo hoo! I was awakened by sweet birthday kisses from my boys and lots of singing - soo cute!
Picked out my first day of work outfit (not too stuffy, not too casual) and went to work.
Mostly I did a lot of training and filling out paperwork and getting to know the building and staff and some of the processes. I did get to check out a few books and I have to tell you it was cute. I felt just like a library girl.
After work it was home to start working on Nathan and I's family birthday dinner. He cooked the meal and I made the cake. Rich Carrot Cake w/ homemade Cream Cheese Icing for him and Berry Pie w/ Ice Cream for me. I cheated and bought the Pie for me, but hey, it was my birthday!

It was a great - but very busy - weekend and last night I was so glad just to sit around the table with my small, sweet family and tell stories, eat yummy homecooked goodness and be together. After all the other excitement, that is what I really wanted for my birthday.

OK, that is all for this super long post. I promise to get back to more crafting/decorating/lovely things very soon! Thanks for indulging me...

Friday, September 26, 2008

Today's the Day

That my one-of-a-kind Play Love Laugh banner goes up for sale at the Nie Nie Etsy sale hosted by
One more Moore

CLICK HERE for the Preview

CLICK HERE for the Sale which happens @ 12 Noon Central Time

So far from what I can tell this has been an amazing sale which has lasted much, much longer and brought together many, many more artist and crafters than anyone expected.
The ability to bring people together to help in a crisis is one of the most amazing things that the blogging community has produced. To learn more about Nie Nie GO HERE

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Dress Like A Librarian

So I am sure you know the first thing I thought once I found that I had indeed gotten the library job. Well OK, first I went all Sally Field and thought "they like me, they really like me!" and then I thought what I am sure you have already guessed...Oh, librarian clothes...A whole new wardrobe...I will have to shop now. Right? Picking out an outfit for the first day of a new job is like picking out an outfit for the first day of school -absolutely fraught with possibilities and filled with anxious excitement. Or at least it is that way for me...

When I said to my little sister that I needed "library clothes" she rolled her eyes (just a little) and replied that my entire closet was already filled with "library clothes." "Yeah" I said, "but I need new library clothes. It's for my job." Because anything you need for a job automatically justifies it right?

I have a little birthday money to spend on said clothes (perfect timing huh?) and so I have been doing some research and inspiration shopping in all my favorite places...

The Movies
I know You've Got Mail is not technically a library movie but it is based around books so that counts right? I have always adored - even to this day- the way Meg Ryan dressed in this movie. Her look is still great 10 years later and I love it. I will definitively be watching it again this weekend again paying special attention to her ...

Funny Face is another movie that has some book-ish qualities about it. Have you even noticed how Meg Ryan wears a 1998 version of this outfit in You've Got Mail? See, classic style, even 40 years later.
And regardless of what Tim Gunn says I will be wearing black tights and leggings all fall, you can betcha bottom dollar!

Mona Lisa Smiles is another great for style - all those sweater sets and tweeds, set off by pearls and red lipstick...

A little too stylized for everyday life maybe, but full of fashion history to draw from...

And so we come to Party Girl , the only true Library Movie I could remember. I have not seen this movie in ages but I think I better add to the Netflix list soon. Parker Posey young and goofy and very Posey-ish - most of her clothes are way to over the top for me now, but still it is fun to watch her transformation in style and character, and all against the backdrop of the musty dusty library...

So those are the movies I thought of - can you think of any that I missed?

Besides the movies I have also found inspiration at some of my favorite on-line sites...

Here are some looks I found from Sundance, Noa Noa, Anthropologie and Boden. All way beyond my price range, but all still very inspirational...

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Get Your Spook On...

My new article for Blissfully Domestic is up HERE...

More holiday fun to come soon...

Monday, September 22, 2008

Go Ahead And Ask

Check out the new feature over at Vintage Indie and ask away...

(Thanks to Gabriel for the great graphic!)


Well I went and did it. Sorda.
I got a J-O-B. Sorda.
I mean if you call working 20 hrs a week at the cutest library ever an actual J-O-B.

I have wanted to work at a library since before Wylie was born, but it just never seemed to be the right job, or the right time, or the right whatever.

Library-in seems to be in my blood...My Maw, my maternal grandmother, went back to school at age 50 and got her degree, & her masters in Library Science and had a fulfilling 20 year career as a school librarian. I spent a lot of time with her at her schools, "helping out" with her students, even though sometimes I am sure they were older than me!

I have always been a reader, like my Daddy, and my mom who loves to learn new things took us to regular and extensive visits to the library. As home-schooled kids we all spent a lot of time in our local library in Juneau. I would spend what seemed like hours discovering and picking out new books on all sorts of topics, fiction, non-fiction, history, literary, you name it - unless it was scientific- I probably read something about it.

So working in a library has always seemed right down my alley. Not that it will be all romantic and glamorous. After all I have already learned that I cannot wear flip-flops to work (guess I will just have to buy more ballet slippers, darn) and I am sure there will be lots of actual work to do besides checking books out and staring over my glasses and whispering "shh" to loud teenagers goofing off...

But most of the time, and what actually sealed the deal on me applying for this particular job, is that I will get to work downtown at the relatively new little Argenta Branch that is housed in the bottom floor of an old fire station. I will get to work down there quite a bit (almost exclusively eventually I hope) and will help a lot with the community and children programs that they are trying to do more and more at that branch. Apparently my crafting and event coordination skills where a big plus in me getting this job - who knew!

The branch is downtown in the Argenta District which is undergoing some major revitalization's and is where some of my very favorite restaurants are, not to mention a farmers market twice a week and the trolley that passes right in front of the library. Too cute!

But don't worry I am not giving up the crafting and banner business at all, I am just stepping out of the house a few times a week to earn a more predictable paycheck and expand my world a little bit more... I think having this dependable income will free me up mentally and I will not feel so much pressure when it comes to my craft business. Does that make sense?

So next week, on my birthday actually, I will start down my new journey as a part-time library clerk. Not a bad way to start 34 I think...

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Always Learning...

I recently re-found these vintage flash cards that I had stashed away. I pulled them out and set them in a stack in the middle of the kitchen table to go through with Miles from time to time.
Miles is an extroverted, somewhat curmudgeon-y, but precious and amazingly creative kid who needs a lot of TLC and one- on-one time so I thought it would be good to have ready-made interactive activity within arms reach on the kitchen table.

Recently I found myself in a thrift store for no good reason. I was on my way home from the Post Office, when suddenly I found myself in the thrift store wondering why I had stopped. I don't really need a reason to stop, but I usually have them. I am usually on the hunt for something specific, for the shoppe or for the house. But on this day, apparently the reason I stopped was so that I could pick up my own copy of this book.

Now, normally I am not a "parenting book" person, most of them stress me out our make me laugh with their broad generalizations and one-size fits all formulas. But even I will admit when I come across one that I actually find helpful and insightful, and this is just that kind of book. Years ago, when Wylie was 3&4 years old I found this book to be insanely helpful. Only back then I hadn't found a used copy and it wasn't on the Bargain Rack at Barnes and Nobles so I would just sit on the floor of the bookstore and read and make notes.

This book is a great for when you reach that point where you can't tell who is being more difficult - your kid or you.

It helps you take a step back, look objectively again at your child and yourself and re-direct and re-focus both of you. Especially if you have gotten off track do to regular life changes such as moving, going back to school or just ya know, turning 4.

Miles is a very spirited kid, much like Wylie was at that age, only with a much more intense need for interaction and affection. I could not have found this book at a better moment for all of us. Nathan and I have been reading it a bit at a time, dusting off the cobwebs of our technique , and applying it over the weekend. Already we can see drastic change in both our moods and attitudes and those of Miles.

But enough of that practical life stuff. Look at what else I found - a pair of unused Simply Shabby Chic pink curtain sheers. I don't know what I am going to do with them but I couldn't pass them up for only 2.50!

And this precious quilt. Reminds me of something Manda at TreeFall (who has the coolest new job btw!) would make, or maybe slightly Cath Kidston... Usually I re-sell the quilts I buy, but I think this one may have to live at my little casa.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Musical Tables

Here is my new (old) pedestal table.
I won it in a card game.
No actually I traded my grandmother back her old dining room table for this table which was in her kitchen. My family is famous for switching furniture on a whim. It is one of our trademarks.
I have been wanting a round pedestal table forever. My love of them is no secret. And I have been wanting a more casual table for the dining room - more farm table feel- instead of a formal feel.

So now I have the pedestal table in the kitchen, because even with the leaf in it was too small for the dining room. So now we are going to plan B for the dining room. Using the farm table that is currently my desk and using the old kitchen table as my desk.

Confused? Yeah, me too.

Anyway, here is the pedestal table pre-painting. I am going to paint it white first chance I get.

Here is the table that is going back in the dining room. This is how it looked when we used it when when first moved into this house 5 years ago. Nathan remembered that it was off set like this with the light fixture swung over...Wonder if we will need to do that again... I am going to paint it as well, I just have to choose a color for this table - white? Aqua? Pink? I have completely different chairs now. Most of those white ladder back chairs (that I loved) have bit the dust. Plus I still have to paint the bench. But I think I have narrowed it down. So maybe soon I will have a big painting day and paint all 3 pieces at once.

Eventually I would like a farm table like this one from Pottery Barn that has a leaf or 2 for extension, because a couple of times a year we do have a big sit down people dinner and I like the option of crowding everyone around one table. Has anyone ever tried to extend their own table by making leaves for it? Is that possible?


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

6 Things

I was recently tagged by an old friend - perhaps my oldest friend - Becca. Our dad's were in seminary together when we were 4-8 yrs old, and back then I called her Becky... I wonder when the switch to Becca came? Since they graduated we have never lived in the same state, but because we had grandparents in the same town we somehow were able to visit with each other over the years and we managed to make to each others weddings - ironically the same summer - and through the magic of Blogland we still stay in touch to this day. (I.E. we still read and comment on each others blogs, that counts right?)

I don't feel like I have any more weird or unusual things to share since the last time I was tagged, so I thought I would share 6 pics that I have saved in my Ideas/Inspiration folders recently. I cannot remember where I found all these - if you recognize one of these photo's or they are yours please let me know (and if you want me to link to you or take them down I will gladly...)So cozy... I love this. If we ever get the attic fixed up I want one corner like this just for napping...

Amazing, whimsical, delightful. I want to make a dozen to hang on my back porch. When I get a back porch...

I have a dresser/mirror piece just like this one, only it is brown and is need of some work. I am trying to decide what color to paint it and what room it will go in, but I just loved finding an example of one re-done... And all the lights glittering in this picture are so lovely, don't you think?

Dream stove/oven. He likes it for the function, I like it for the red knobs and it's reflective quality.

I have wanted a white pedestal table forever (this one is Shabby Chic) and soon I may just have one - unless I paint it some other color... Oh the choices!

I adore this room. It is just so alive and happy! I love the paint on one wall and the wallpaper on another and the curtain pattern...

OK, so those are 6 pics that are inspiring me right now.
I am going to tag all of you and ask "What 6 things are inspiring you?" If you decide to play along make sure to leave a comment and a link to your blog - I would love to be inspired some more!

Monday, September 15, 2008


Today the weather was perfect and lovely, with crisp fall air and beautiful blue skies...

The boys played in the front yard quite a bit, and I even stepped away from the glittering to play with them for a moment.

These are some of the pictures I snapped before the sun went down and we went in for supper.

Also, I have put in some of the quotes that are floating around in my head this week. Nothing earth shattering, just things that are comforting and encouraging to me in their own way...

" . . . You must do the thing you think you cannot do."
Eleanor Roosevelt

Keep Calm and Carry On.

Make Do and Mend
(this goes for hearts too I think...)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Women

Last night I got to do something I never do - see a movie on opening weekend.
Also I got to go see it with my mother and both my sisters. I don't think we have all seen a movie together since we were kids.

My sis Jemimah loves the play The Women. I think the first time she saw it was on PBS, and since then she has seen the 1939 movie version, which my mom has seen also.
I have not seen that version, or the play, but I have wanted too and I just keep forgetting to put it on the Netflix list.

Anyway, Jemimah is home for a few weeks from Germany, and it just worked out that we (we being Jemimah, Judea, my Mom and myself) could all go to the newest film version of this classic, together.

And happily we all really liked it. Which is a good sign because we rarely all four agree on anything. Except our love of chocolate and shoes and a good thrift store.

I was so glad to see my old pal Meg back on the screen doin' her thing.

And she had amazing hair as always. During this scene I leaned over to Jemimah and said "I think I need another perm. I have to have her hair!"

I adore Debra Messing and she was just too funny in her role as the token Earth Mother.
In fact lots of things about the movie may seem "token" but there was still lots to like, and frankly I don't need every movie to be Atonement. Quite the contrary, I like a whip cream now and then. My real life is quite deep enough, thank you very much.

This movie hasn't gotten stellar reviews but I loved it and will be owning it in the future for sure... If only to try and figure out how Meg gets her hair so perfect every time...

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Poor Professor Higgin's Mantle

My mantle is my big experiment area. I never decorate it the same way twice. I guess it is my substitute for a storefront window...
I change it seasonally, almost monthly, I never repeat an exact arrangement...Sometimes I have a plan, sometimes it just evolves.

So far (and this could change of course between now and then) my fall/Halloween mantle has a very academic feel about it.

I am calling it my Poor Professor Higgins Mantle...

Needing height I grabbed this heavy cake-stand, and books in orange, brown, green and black to elevate my white pumpkins at different levels...

Seeing how "professor-y" the mantle was looking with the books and pumpkins, I grabbed these apothecary jars and filled them with old wine corks and plastic orange and black spiders for that extra spooky look..

I also spread corks around the mantle in various piles, switched the taper candles out for green ones (until I can get my hands on a pair of these) and added a Happy Halloween banner from last year (if you look closely you can see that Miles added his handiwork to the second letter "L" .) If you like orange take a good look because this is the only time you will see these colors in my house all year.

I think it turned out pretty cute, and completely unplanned. Now I just need some tweed pillows and slippers lying about to make it truly a Professor Higgins display...

Monday, September 08, 2008

Some More Blogland Love

OK, so since I have been on the topic of blogs and blog pals that I love lately, I had to share what I consider to be pretty big news:
Guess who has joined us in Blogland?

That's right, Ms. Ashwell has a BLOG

I find it pretty amazing, that the world is flat after all.
Suddenly I can leave a comment on the fab Ms. Ashwell's blog and chances are she will see it.
I am an unabashed fan, I admit. I credit the discovery of Rachel's TV show for altering the course of my life.
I probably would not be doing what I am doing now if I had not discovered that show, it unleashed a flood of inspiration and dreaming in me that I had never been able to truly express before.
Even though my pallet and style are not pure 100% Shabby Chic, I still think the essence of what I do and how I approach things is very much in line with the Shabby Chic style, and if Rachel were to walk into my house and my little one-room shoppe, she would be able to see her influence and encouragement peeping through my design....

Another great thing that came about because of Blogging is my discovery of Etsy.
Not only have I been able to eek out a decent business from it, but I have discovered so many other talented artist and bloggers there as well...
If the well is ever dry for inspiration, all I have to do is go browse through my Favorites and suddenly I am lit with ideas and creativity and happy thoughts...
If I were Peter Pan I am sure it would be enough to make me fly!
Some of my current Etsy Favorites... Enjoy!

Sunday, September 07, 2008


I have this thing for sticking silk flowers on lampshades.
I am not sure when or how or why it started.
And mostly I only do it with my straw- like lamp shades.
I think it is because lampshades always look like hats to me, and therefore my straw lampshades look like straw hats, and don't all straw hats need a big silk flower stuck to them now and then?
Maybe it is just the southern gal in me....
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