Monday, July 30, 2012

A Little Mailbox Landscaping

I love rural mailboxes. Sometimes the more rustic and broken down they are, the more charm they have. Especially if there are wild flowers such as Morning Glories growing on them.

I've been wanting to landscape around ours for a while, but lots of other things have been more important and its been HOT and we have had lots of rain storms in the afternoons after work. I didn't know exactly what I wanted to do.

This small problem was solved last weekend when my son called to ask if I wanted to dig up some plants from his house. I was more than happy to and when I got there the plants he was talking about were Monkey Grasses (lirope).

Our mailbox is located across the road from our house and has a big field behind it which currently has sweet potatoes growing in it. We often sit on our porch and watch the deer munching happily on the sweet potato vines.



The Monkey Grass, a potted plant, a sunflower garden flag, some brown mulch and a little work.... well, a LOT of work, all contributed to the finished project:



I have to thank my hubby so much for putting down the newspaper and mulch and mowing around the mailbox, after he had already put in a day's work. I simply couldn't do any more work in the heat and humidity on a July day in Eastern North Carolina!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Above the Kitchen Window

These little plaques are sitting on the little ledge over my kitchen window. I think I first put a couple of things up there when we moved here, thinking it would be temporary until I could get around to hanging them. But here we are 2 1/2 years later and I still have a collection of little things up there.







*****

Personal Notes:

We got Mama moved into her new room. She had dialysis Wednesday and a dermatologist appointment yesterday, so she was out of the room a lot. After only one night she is adamant that she wants to go back to her old room as soon as the renovations are done.

Her roommate is very nice and they have a lot in common. Her name is Ms. Myrtle and she is a sweetie.

For the most part I am very pleased with her new circumstances.

****

My little grandson started Kindergarten last week. It was a little bit of a rocky start. He has been going to preschool, but had been home with his Dad, who is a teacher and is home for the summer, for about a month. Going to a new school and knowing his Dad was home made it tough. But you gotta do what you gotta do! Only 13 more years, plus college, so he might as well get used to it, right? Poor little guy. He won't even turn 5 until August 27th!

*****

My hubby needs knee replacement surgery for his right knee. We may be scheduling that for later this fall, but nothing is definite yet. He has to have some other tests done first.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Wednesday Morning

Good morning to you! Its another busy morning here at Homemaking Dreams. There are lots of things going on today and coming up this Fall.

"I'm Thinking Fall!"



Today my mother will be moved to another room in the adjacent nursing home. The reason is that the entire hall she has been living on is going to be renovated. The nursing home is an old one and really does need updating, but its hard for her to have to get used to new people and places. Even though her current room needs some work, she is fine with it! She doesn't have a choice, so today we move. I cleaned and organized her things Saturday in preparation for moving. The nursing home will take care of actually moving things, but we will need to get everything straightened out. She will also have a roommate for the first time, so this may be interesting.

My mother's health has not improved and she struggles daily with just plain old not feeling well, going to dialysis, having minor surgeries and more. You know how every time you go to the hospital, they send home a pink plastic dishpan with you? When I cleaned Mama's room Saturday I counted nine of them! So, yes, its been a tough several months for my Mama.

Here's a picture of just a couple of my African Violets blooming their hearts out. I have too many plants. It will only get worse when winter comes and I will need to move a bunch inside. I need to start finding homes for some of them now I guess.

But, if you look closely you will see a couple of African Violet leaves rooting! Man, that will mean more plants soon. I think some nurses at the nursing home might like some...... hmmmm



I'm planning for fall already. I want to put out my few fall things as soon as possible, probably gradually in August. I just gotta remember where the "Fall" box is! I don't have a lot of fall decorations, but there is a table runner, a few plates and a wreath, etc. It will soon be time to introduce the darker less Springy/Summery colors.

Have a great July 25, 2012!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Glimpses From Home

Here are some recent pictures from around our yard.

The bath mats were drying on the clothesline when I was taking pictures of a finished quilt. When I put those bath mats in the dryer they seem to take forever to dry and hanging them on the line extends their life.



The Fourth of July. I love this flag which has an aged look.



The sprinkler was running in this picture, but we have had a good amount of rain this summer, which is very unusual. Normally this time of year the grass is brown, but as you can see is bright green this year.



Wysteria can be beautiful in the right place, but its invasively growing on this tree. The roots and trunk of the wisteria are huge and wrap so tightly around this tree that it cannot be removed, despite my hubby's best efforts to tame it.



I can see this hanging basket which hangs from the clothesline through the bedroom window.



A lonesome cloud.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Small Touches

Good Tuesday Morning to you!

Saturday I repotted a Ponytail Palm into the Sunflower pot I posted about awhile back. The little angel pot sitter is cute.



Last night I made this dish drain mat. It comes in handy for hand washed items and for the plastic pieces that come out of the dishwasher wet. Kind of gives a mundane chore a little charm. The back is a red hand towel and the front is make from scrap fabrics. I am thinking about getting one of those wooden dish drying racks to sit on top of the mat. I'm not sure if it would be a help or just in the way.



More pictures of the angel pot sitters:




Have a good day!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Out My Kitchen Window

My friend Penny posted a picture of the view out her kitchen window. So I thought I'd do the same.

We recently put up some new curtains that I think go well with the farmhouse theme I am trying to achieve. They also do a good job blocking some of the heat that comes in through these windows in the afternoon.



On one window is a stained glass Cardinal attached with a suction cup. I love plants and so the deep window sills above the sink contains a few African Violets, Aloe Plants and a small Pony Tail Palm.

Right outside the window is a hanging basket filled with yellow, red and white blooms and green vines trailing over the edge, almost reaching the ground. I can also see several birdhouses, trees and a field.



There is a tutorial for a quilted kitchen window quilt HERE. A window quilt is a cute idea for a place that doesn't have a window. The quilt has a view on it, even if there is no view out a window. I think if I didn't have a window over my kitchen sink, this would be the next best thing!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Trying Something New

On a whim I bought some paints, cheap foam brushes and a clay flower pot with the intention of painting a sunflower on it. Now, I've never been an artist, and probably never will be. I'm not sure why I thought I could do this. I figured I could always spray paint the pot if the sunflower didn't work out.

So with being off work yesterday for July 4th and having the house to myself for the morning I got out my stuff and found a "How to paint a sunflower tutorial" HERE. I love this website lots!

I didn't really buy the right colors and definitely not the right brushes, but I carried on. I only bought yellow, green and brown paint colors and the green and yellow I chose are a little weird. If I had found the tutorial before going to the store I would have made better choices!



I started out by drawing the center circle of the sunflower with a pencil.



I painted it with the brown paint and made the petals with the pencil.



With a black sharpie I outlined the brown circle and then started painting the flower petals. It was hard at first but once I got the hang of it, it went pretty well.



Then I added the stem and leaves and did a little highlighting. Again with just my three colors.



My opinion: I can tell its a sunflower and so I'm happy with it.



I'd like to try again and this time I'll buy the right colors and some better brushes.

Did you know the clay saucers cost almost as much as the pot? I found this "apple green" plate for a dollar which even matches the weird green paint I used for the leaves and stem!



Can you believe I did a craft that did not include the sewing machine?!!!

Practice first.... Sew once!

I worked on the monogrammed bags I am making for Christmas gifts over the weekend.  I had already been successful with one bag.  The monogra...