Thursday, May 31, 2012

You are My Sunshine Giveaway

One of the first blogs I started following was The Vintage Pearl. I came across them in The Artful Blogger magazine. I was drawn in by the beautiful pictures and the simple, touching jewelry. Each piece is hand-crafted and you can get lost looking through all the options!

They are doing a wonderful giveaway right now for a You Are My Sunshine necklace. As always it's a cheerful piece that will bring a smile to your face!

Monday, May 28, 2012

A long, long, long-term project

You know how when there is a long weekend, you put together a long list of projects you have been procrastinating on and swear this is when you are finally going to get them all done? Well, I made the list...I drew some great sketches...and I got one project done (mostly).

But in all fairness, it was a doozy. It all started back in the summer of 2010. :-) The master bedroom is a work in progress. It doesn't have a clear vision. I'm easily distracted if I don't have a clear goal. I had re-arranged our room thinking it would be nice to have a sitting area in front of the window. Perhaps a chaise or a comfy chair and ottoman for reading.

Our community garage sale came around and I walked the blocks and found the perfect piece. It was going to need some work but it had potential. K is not always as quick to see the potential (perhaps because it takes me two years complete a project, hmmm.) And for only $25 I had the perfect new piece of furniture for our room.

Isn't it fabulous? Okay, so an ambitious teen had painted all the woodwork white and started painting the insets a tacky, shiny gold. And perhaps the fabric has some marker stains on it. For $25 dollars I could refinish and recover it. No problem!

First, I started stripping the old paint off with an orange, natural paint stripper and a plastic scraper.

This went pretty well, where the wood was smooth but it was almost impossible to strip everything where the wood was carved. I felt like I was taking off part of the wood itself. I took off as much paint as I could get without damaging the wood. I then removed all the fabric leaving the cushion.

I painted the wood work a deep, dark shiny brown.

Unfortunately, I'm not able to find the pictures of this step, because this is how it stayed for the next year or so. I had enough fabric from previous projects available so I wouldn't need to purchase any. For the next year or so, the yellow cushions were exposed with the new fabric draped over the couch ready to be applied.

I had hit a snag. The wood was too hard for my staple gun to fire into. It would not push the staple all the way in.

This weekend (finally!!) I borrrowed my father-in-law's air-compressor and air stapler and voila! the fabric has been permanently attached. All that is needed now is the trim to be applied to cover the edges and a little bit of touch up paint. 

The piece fits in much better with our warm bedroom colors and I'm feeling more inspired to get the rest of the room done.

Next weekend is the community garage sale again. Perhaps I can find some bedside tables!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Just Ducky

Here's a few more shots from last weekend with Danielle. Several of these feature our guest star, Mr. Duck! We walked down towards the lake at Ferguson Park in Snohomish where Danielle perched on a big rock for a few pictures. There were several ducks down there. You can see one of them taking a stroll up the path in the background.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

By the River

As promised, here are the photos from A and my day out. She was such a good sport and we walked along the riverfront trail and tried out a few locations and backdrops.

She experimented with a few different poses. I just let her do her thing and didn't do any dress-up. We kept it very simple. I didn't put them all up here, but there was the thinking pose, the diva one hand reaching for the sky pose, her "what's up" pose, and more. She is quite goofy when she's in the mood to play.

Fortunately, she's not at all uncomfortable being her natural silly self in public so she doesn't mind posing for pictures on a public trail. After all this girl is known to dance spontaneously in the grocery store aisles if she likes the song that is playing. The only thing she's self concious about right now is her missing teeth. I think it's a great memory!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Natural Beauty

Danielle is a natural in front of the camera. I tell you it loves her and there are just no bad pictures. It was a drizzly day (note: her hair isn't frizzing--how is that possible)but we managed to stay dry and stuck to the trees. We found this great big ol' tree at Feruson Park in Snohomish. The big, chunky bark texture was a great backdrop and her red shirt really pops out.

We were going to try for some pictures on the waterfront and the old buildings downtown but there was an event going on and no parking to be found within miles. Instead we headed to North Cove Park in Lake Stevens. This time we found a tree with overhanging branches that gave off filtered lights and she glowed like an angel. Which she is of course!

There was also the dock on the lake itself so we got some shots there too. Here are just a few from the session. Isn't she gorgeous?

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Joy for the Eyes

A and I were on our own this morning since K had to work and B had spent the night at a friend's house last night. We decided to delay chores and have a little fun. We stopped in at Frost Doughnuts and each chose a yummy breakfast treat. A went for the vanilla cake doughnut and I had the renowned bacon maple bar. Belatedly, I realized I should have taken pictures...but oooh they were good!

After our tasty treats we headed to downtown Snohomish where A modeled for me. I've been looking for some new picture backdrops and wanted to see how the riverfront would be as a setting. I'll try to get those pictures up soon.

While we were down there I took the opportunity to stop in at Joyworks and see what was new. I absolutely love, love this store. Their displays are gorgeous and I love how they have little areas organized by color themes. I'm a sucker for color!

My favorites are all the signs. And the pillows, And the general tschokes (not sure I spelled that right). A and I explored upstairs and downstairs. I'm thinking I need to hurry up and finish my bedroom so I can add some art. I know just where to shop!

I loved this display of red. It looks so bright and cheery. It would totally match the blender and food processor in my kitchen but sadly nothing else...

A found a few treasures she would have loved to take home herself. Her first pick was this dress with the big, fluffy tutu. Super girly! And also a mermaid because everyone needs one of those to keep you company as summer draws near. Ultimately, a wind-up frog won out!
There was so much eye-candy to be seen and it gave me so many ideas for ways to decorate. What a great way to spend the morning with my little chatter box!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Model Magic

Everyday on my way home from work I see the old McCabe's building from the freeway and I think "that would be a great backdrop for pictures." Unfortunately, I was lacking a model and A has been on strike.

My sweet friend agreed to be my practice model and even agreed for a few shots at the local park too. She's beautiful and despite being nervous I think she's a natural. She's got a great smile and of course the gorgeous hair. Her photos turned out great.

Sapphire Happiness

I'm so, so excited about my new camera bag. I generally try not to be a materialistic person but I have to admit have been coveting the bags from Kelly Moore. Finally the time had took careful consideration, dithering about which style I wanted and choosing, more dithering about whether the choice was right, waffling about which color I like best, changing my mind because I liked the color but would I like it in a year and what does it match...and finally I placed my order.

Yes, I went with the larger bag that I could probably tote a toddler in but I'm happy to finally have one bag to carry both my laptop and camera in.  Plus, for days I'm going to be taking pictures there are lots of extra pockets and space to toss in my wallet, keys, phone, etc and I'm set!

I'm in love with the sapphire blue and the adjustable dividers inside. Now I have to make the most of it and get out there and take more pictures. Since my kids are boycotting pictures currenty, I'm going to have to find fresh models!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Coming up Flowers

I put one of these "Forgotten Garden" bracelets together for my mother-in-law for Christmas. She loved it and so did one of her co-workers. She asked that I make one for her recently. Some of her flowers are different colors since the pressed glass "petals" aren't always in stock.

What do you think? Have the spring flowers inspired you?

Celebrating Mom

With Mother's Day coming up I decided to take a stroll down memory lane. Grandchildren are the center of both my mom and my mother-in-laws worlds. I pulled up pictures of the kids and using Shutterfly put together photo books for each of them.

Here is the photo book I made for my mom.

We are so blessed to have both of our mother's so close to us and our kids see them frequently. My kids enjoy close relationships with both of them and see them each week.

My mother-in-law and A had a "date night" tonight and went out for dinner and a play. One of the local high schools was performing Cinderella.

What a fortunate family we are to have two such fantastic mothers!