Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Spring Came Calling

I bet you're wondering what happened to the telephone chair. Is it painted; is it recovered?

Well, the answer is no. I did manage to pull off all the layers of fabric on the seat.


You see, Spring called. The weather has been warm, trees are budding out, and flowers blooming.


I just had to get outside and enjoy the delicious weather...which is a good thing because Winter decided to come roaring back. It's not super cold (60's) but the wind has been blowing like a banshee making it feel colder. Plus, I got sick about the time it decided to act like Winter again.

However, I did finish up a few quick and easy projects. I found an old magazine rack - a big one - pretty golden wood color (not). But it was just what I was looking for. (Bad blogger! I forgot to take a picture of it before I painted it). I painted it then whitewashed it.
 Here it is finished and in the kitchen. It is holding my cheap cutting boards. One day, I will put my cookie sheets and wood cutting boards in it. I like having them out where I can get to them easily. No more moving other bakeware out of the way.
 Then I'm not sure I ever showed my rocking horses done. Here's the little one:

 Here's the big one:
I really do love how they turned out!

We also went exploring one Saturday...well, ok. We were really going into Tyler to a countertop store but lo and behold, they are closed on the weekends. Boo. So we went exploring!

We ended up in Edom, TX - cute shops. One was a pottery place. Bruce bought me these pieces:
 A dip bowl and creamer. I just love them. So unique!

I also found this phone at an antique mall in Salado the beginning of the month. It's just the style I was looking for. The color isn't exactly what I want so it will be getting a makeover when I get to it and the table. (Soon I hope)!

Lastly, Bruce worked on getting the barn cleaned out of the junk the previous owners had left behind. We are discussing what I want as far as the art studio goes...windows, door, etc. I'm very excited! This is happening!!!

He's promised to keep that wood beam showing when he puts the ceiling in. Yay! I have some red tongue and groove boards from a friend too that were in her breakfast room. I have some ideas for using them. There's not enough for a whole wall but I should get some decorative use out of them.

As you can see, I haven't been wasting my time. I promise I'll get to the telephone table soon. I really do want to get it done...now if this nasty cold will just go away!

Hope you are well and getting glimpses of Spring.
hugs,
Cecilia

Linking at these parties:
Fluster Buster Creative Muster

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

sick...

I had a post all planned out for this week. I was going to tell you why I haven't made any progress on the telephone table then share what I did work on.

But this morning I woke up with what feels like the flu. I'll see a health care provider this afternoon but in the meantime, I'm laid out on the couch, coughing and feeling pretty yucky.

Bear with me as I strive to get better. You'll find me under the heap of blankets with a washcloth on my forehead.

See you later,
Cecilia

Friday, February 19, 2016

Love Your Pet Day

Did you know tomorrow is Love Your Pet Day? I didn't either. But yes, there's a day set aside for loving your pet...haha, as if we need to be reminded to love on them. I don't know about you, but my fur babies are spoiled. :o)

One of the ways Buddy and Herbie,  my border collies, get spoiled is taking them to their favorite places to run and play. Of course, their top spot is the farm. Here, they have a very large yard to run and play in. They jump happily out of the truck the minute we open the door and dash around the yard.



Then they are ready to go walking (or actually running) around the farm. They wait impatiently at the gate and zoom off when we tell them "ok". They're actually getting better at coming back when we call them. :o)




They come home tired but happy. They love the farm!


But what do we do when we're in the city? Well, we live near Austin, TX which happens to have lots of dog friendly areas. We take them to the park close to our house where they splash in the creek and pull us along the hike and bike trail.
source

Or we take them to Lake Pflugerville. Here there's a 3 mile hiking trail around the lake where they love to explore. On warm days (which are plenty in Texas), we let them swim. We keep them on a leash so we can control how far out they swim. They love it!
source

It's important for them to get exercise (just like us!). Another way I spoil them is to make sure they have the best care when I have to leave them behind. (Sorry, guys. You can't go with us to Boston!) I'm fortunate to have my sister close by. She loves on them like they're her own. But what if you don't have someone you know who's willing and able? I just discovered there's a pet sitting service in Austin and other cities that matches your local area with pet sitters. It's called Rover.com.  You get to browse through potential sitters, arrange a meet and greet, then pick the one that fits you and your pets the best. I'd definitely give them a try if I ever needed a pet sitter!

I'm glad to know they exist! You can bet I'll keep them in mind if my sister is ever unavailable to watch Buddy and Herbie for me. Peace of mind is priceless when it comes to our fur babies.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Making a Truck Seat Cover

We have an extended cab pickup truck. It's what we normally drive to the farm in. Bruce and I sit up front and Buddy and Herbie get to ride in the back seat.
Buddy

Herbie

They like having a whole seat to themselves. (Although I'm pretty sure either one of them would happily sit in my lap...all 50+ pounds of them). heh.

We had a moving blanket I attached straps to that we would cover the back seat with but when the dogs were puppies they would chew on it. Over time, it got pretty full of holes. Oh puppies! We finally had to throw it away.

Lately, we've just been throwing a sheet on the seat but that doesn't protect the seat back. The dogs have loads of fun running, swimming in the pond, and digging at the farm so they are often pretty dirty when we load them up to return to the city. (And yes, if they are really nasty, they get a bath before heading back. Often, it's just loads of sand hiding in their coats).

The back seat had thus gotten pretty grungy. I spent a day cleaning it for Bruce then decided I needed to make a new cover. Why make one? First of all, ready made ones are pretty expensive and finding the right size has been difficult. I grabbed my tape measure and notepad and measured the seat.

Then I drew out a diagram of my cuts. It's not pretty or neat but it works for me.

Next,  I headed to the fabric store hoping to find the perfect (and cheap) fabric. Sure enough in the clearance area, I found one for $7/yd. Perfect! Not fuzzy or super soft that might encourage chewing.

I only needed 2 1/2 yards but bought 3 just in case I messed up.  Following my drawing, I cut all my pieces...

Started sewing...I wasn't worried about perfection - I just wanted a pretty good fit.

And almost 4 hours later, I had a seat cover!



It wasn't difficult; just time-consuming as I had to finish all the edges to prevent raveling. Now the seat will stay cleaner and we'll have less cleanup of the truck. I'd say that's a win!

I can't wait for Bruce to see it. :o)

I hope you have a great weekend! Hopefully, you have Monday off and will get to do something fun. Until next time!

Hugs,
Cecilia





Thursday, February 4, 2016

10 Things I've Learned From Decorating The Farmhouse

Since we bought the farm four years ago, I've learned some important lessons about my style and what makes me happy.

It was pretty much a blank slate when we bought it (lots of brown paneling) that needed some love (and lots of cleaning!). 

I was so excited to put our stamp on it and started gathering ideas right away. There were so many looks calling my name; I was hard pressed to choose a single direction. But I finally decided I wanted a "rustic farm" look so I started using lots of burlap and other rustic elements.

But over time, it started to not feel right, so slowly I've been changing things up. Here's what I learned in the process:

1. It's ok to change your mind. Sometimes it's easy to get caught up in a trend and suddenly you
    realize that's not who you are. It's ok to switch directions.

2. Don't do something just because someone else thinks that's the way you should do it. I was really
    leaning toward painting my mom's bedroom furniture white but I let my sister influence me to do
    blue (it was my mom's favorite color and it helped me not feel guilty about painting it as Mom
    didn't like painted wood.) Guess what? I'm tired of the blue and want to paint it white. BTW, no
    offense Sis.


3. I don't like primitive country. I'm more of a cottagey farmhouse, with a side of what I call abbey
    style (simple, neutral and sort of European look) kind of person- with Mercury glass. I love me
    some Mercury glass!
Rustic cross with a frame around it


4. I like neutral colors - a lot! There's something peaceful in white (or neutral) walls and furniture. A
    little bit of color goes a long way and if you only use it for accent colors, it's easy to change. 
Walls better painted all white but there's still a lot of color going on in here

5. I love my chalkboard wall. I knew it would be a cool feature, but I didn't realize how much I'd
    really dig it. I love everything about it - from being able to write on it to the color. Who knew a
    black wall would look so good?

6. I don't want clutter. I'm tired of opening closets, cabinets, etc. and seeing stuff I don't use or love
    anymore plus we have less space to store stuff. And, all that clutter tends to spill out onto any flat
    surface in the house.


7. Less is more. The living room furniture isn't quite right. It's a fairly small room and some of the
    pieces are too big/bulky for the space. I will need to really edit this space when we move up here.

8. Better made items pay off in the long run. Don't buy cheap, you'll just have to replace it in a couple
    of years. It's better to save up and get quality. This is especially true on big purchases like furniture.
    Inexpensive however, is acceptable if it's made well.

9. It's good to have fun with your decor. I love a touch of whimsy; it adds character to your space.
   (see number 5).
While I love the lamp, I don't love the shade.

10. It's ok to say no. People have been very generous in offering us things to use at the farmhouse.
     We've gotten quite a bit of things to use (lamps, furniture, kitchenware, etc). While that's great,
      don't let  your space become someone else's dumping ground. It's ok to politely refuse. If they
      insist and it's not your style, gift it to someone else or take it to your local charity. Again, this goes
      back to numbers 6 & 7.

That all said and done, I still have plenty of rustic style going on that I love:

My laundry room door, wall, and shutter:



My sliding barn door:

before painting

after painting

And my light fixtures in the kitchen:

love the barn light pendants over the bar!
And my barbed wire wreath:

The two spaces I got right are the master bedroom:

and bathroom:


Both of those spaces make me smile when I walk into them.

I'll continue to tweak and change the other spaces until they are where I want them. Some will wait until we move there full-time but others like the guest room (paint furniture white, maybe repaint the walls), kitchen, and laundry room (I want to get rid of some of the primitive decor on the walls) can be done before.

In the end, it comes down to decorating with what you love and discovering what makes you happy.