Friday, January 30, 2009

Quote from "The Secret" by Rhonda Byrne

"The only reason why people do not have what they want is because they are thinking more about what they don't want than what they do want. Listen to your thoughts, and listen to the words you are saying. The law is absolute and there are no mistakes."

Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Art of Norwegian Rosemaling

Have you seen pictures of a art form that is new to you and thought "I love that"! That was my reaction when I first saw the decorative flower painting known as Rosemaling. As the name implies, this art form originated in Norway some two hundred years ago and at the time was done by the Norwegian peasants who roamed from country to country painting for their living. The art was spread this way and was in turn brought to the U.S. by Norwegian immigrants.

This type of folk art is usually painted on wood, most popular are plates and other small wooden objects, although furniture such as large cabinets look wonderful with a Rosemal design on them.

Rosemaling designs are painted using the C & S strokes and features flowing lines and scroll work. The colors are usually muted and would fit into almost any modern decor. I think a trio of plates would look wonderful in any kitchen or dining room and can be personalized with names or family history.

The Prayer plate shown here was painted by Jean Honl, who has been doing Rosemaling painting for over 30 years. Please clink on the link below to visit Jean's website.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Paint A Headboard For Your Bed

Many times we have a bedroom where there is no headboard for the bed. This can make the bed look bare and unfinished no matter how pretty the bedding is. There is a simple solution though, paint yourself a headboard making the color and shape just the way you want it. You may like plain and simple and could paint a block of one or two colors, or go with a free form design and paint something with an organic shape. For the how-to on doing this yourself, please click the link below.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Painting Small Accents in Your Home

It's still snowing, which means more time to paint! Sometimes I like to do little accents in one of my rooms just to make a area a little more special. It usually doesn't take much to add some charm or whimsy to a space if you use the right color paint. Projects like painting a "chair rail" or a few stripes on a wall can really liven up a room. You may be surprised to see how little paint you need to give a room a focus wall. For several interesting ideas on painting accents, please see my article on the subject.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Review of "The Secret" by Rhonda Byrne

May The Secret bring you love and
joy for your entire existence

That is my intention for you,
and for the world.

Dedication to the reader by Rhonda Byrne......

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Make A Dried Apple Wreath

Another dreary day, it's cold and snowing outside and that makes for a good time to work on a fun project. This dried apple wreath is easy and fun to do and once you make one, you'll realize that making some for gifts is an inexpensive way to give something everyone loves. You don't need to use a heart shaped wreath, any wicker form will work, use what you have on hand. For complete instructions click on the link below.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

What To Do On A Dreary Day.....Paint!

These last few weeks prior to spring are tough ones, too cold yet to work outside even if all the snow has melted, so we truly need a project or two to keep us busy till we can get outside. This is the time of year when I love to paint, maybe a room in the house or that old beat-up piece of furniture that needs new life. One of my favorite paint projects is to re-do the old entertainment cabinet, these cabinets really take a beating and can over time look like it's time to replace it. But, hold on, why not give that cabinet a new look and your room a wow factor by giving the cabinet a wonderful paint job. If your T.V. unit needs some help please read an article I wrote on the subject.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Decorate Your Garden

I know it's still January, but geez I'm already getting the urge to work in my garden! That's not quite possible, but I can plan and buy items that I can use there. I love looking for new things to put out in the garden, I've got quite a few rusty metal items that stay all the time, but I tend to change things around every year. I call it Decorating the Garden, a favorite past time and one that is so easy to do. If your interested in your garden being a real part of your home, take a look at a article I wrote on the subject, it's full of ideas.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Dusty Wicker is a Thing of the Past!

Have you noticed that your baskets look awful, full of dirt, dust and maybe food particles? It's easy for this to happen, the woven wicker is a magnet for all kinds of dirt. It's easy to clean them though, to make them look like new again. Many people I know ask me how I keep all my baskets looking so nice, I explain that most don't realize that is very possible to wash almost any kind of wicker and rattan. Please read an article I wrote on this subject, spend a little time and get all your baskets and furniture clean and beautiful again.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

How Important is Your Health Care?

On the Home matter how wonderful our home and gardens are, it is the people who inhabit them that really matter. So many I know have been layed off or have lost their job permanently. Along with the loss of the job comes the loss of health insurance, and our health is too important to not have medical coverage. If your in this position, please take a moment to read my article on the subject, it contains important information on why you shouldn't let your coverage slip.

Define A Space With Beads

I was looking at my guest room recently and thought it just needed something. There's really nothing wrong with it, but the bed has no headboard, leaving it looking a bit bare. The room is somewhat small and there is not much room to add a bed frame, so I started looking around for something I could use to frame the space behind the bed. What I found was 2 strands of beads that I had bought some time ago without any idea of what I would do with them. Since I already had a picture over the bed, I decided to pin the beads to the wall to include the picture as part of the "frame". I used straight pins, perfect for hanging light objects since the hole they leave is so small. The area looks more defined now, the beads add some color and overall appears as though there is a bed frame. I've also always wanted to try one of the iron scroll work designs that you see in the craft stores. A pair of these items would make a terrific "headboard".

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Tip of the Day

I love quick and easy fixes for everyday little problems that involve my accessories. Case in point: A bunch of lavender I had dried and wanted to put into a small pottery vase. Even though the opening of the vase was small, the bunch of lavender still would get all crooked. To solve this I took a few strands of raffia and folded them twice over and tucked them into the opening of the vase. This solves two problems: the raffia holds the stems upright while adding a base to the flowers. This would work for almost any situation except in a formal display.

Monday, January 12, 2009

The Appeal of English Cottage Garden Decor

I've never met anyone who doesn't just love the look of English cottage garden. You may not want it in your home, but you've got to love the charming, cozy look of the white painted furniture and the patterned fabrics. Every photo I see of some quaint, thatched roof bungalow with endless varieties of flowers growing everywhere, makes me want to step right in to that picture and look around. If you really look at the furnishings of these homes, you'll see that this look would not be hard to duplicate. If your just starting out with your own home and do not have beautiful furniture from some high-end store (!), it is easy to start collecting different used pieces that you could paint all white. Keeping the style similar would be best, but the white paint alone would tie them all together. I also love all the floral prints that seem to be on everything from curtains to pillows, and if you sew, you can make everything yourself. There are many books and magazines that cater to just the English cottage look, and we must not forget about the English garden, but that's another story.........

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Find Your Cozy Place

Today's world is a crazy, fast-paced race to get as much done as possible during the day. Almost every woman I know run's thru her day, job, kids and a home to take care of are just a short list of all that needs to be done. So it is very important that towards the end of the day everyone has a quiet, cozy nest to settle into. Once you have a little bit of time for yourself, where do you go? Do you have a comphy chair to relax in or a corner of the sofa that has all your "things" at hand? If not, you should, we all need a place that is just "ours", a spot to unwind or read a bit before bed. This photo is my favorite spot in our home, a nice chair and lamp to read by, a ottoman to put my tired feet up and a window nearby in case all I want to do is look outside and reflect on my day. Everyone needs a retreat at times from the chaos of the day, I hope you have yours.........

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

A New Look For Your Accessories

Somewhere between the holidays and spring, we just seem to get tired of how our homes look. We have nice things, good furniture and nice accessories, but it doesn't look as good as we know it can. Well, here's an idea to try to refresh every room in your home without buying a thing.

Remove all your accessories from tables, floor and anywhere else you have them, and place them in a central spot in the room. Try putting each item in a spot different than where it started. Use the rule of 3's and 5's, an uneven number of items always looks better than only having 2 or 4 items. Work trying to stage little vignettes, or little scenes, grouping like items togeather. While doing this you may discover that your room has become crowded with too many things, so pare it down if necessary. You may also find that an item that started out in your living room actually looks better in your family room, so don't be afraid to move items from room to room.

When doing this job you'll find that it is a good time to give your accessories a proper cleaning. After adding the accessories to your room, step back and give the room a critical eye. If something doesn't look right, move it or simply put it away till another time. Just because you may own many accessories doesn't mean that you must use them all at the same time. Remember, too many items can visually bog down a room and cause a cluttered look. Simple almost always looks best.
As you can see from my photo, I have 5 items on my sideboard and counting the two pictures on the wall above, that is 7 items total. Any more than this would look cluttered. Achieving this look is very simple, give it a try, you'll home will feel refreshed!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Best Way To Remember Those Departed

Have you ever wondered what the best way was to remember a departed family member? I've been thinking about a Remembrance Garden to honor those that I've loved and lost. It's a wonderful idea that will keep the memories alive of those who you loved. Far to often, our parents and Grandparents die before our children really get to know them. Having a place in your garden where you could tell stories to your kids would be the perfect way for children to learn about their relatives. If your a gardener, your already imagining the perfect spot where you could plant such a garden, but you don't have to be a gardener to plant a tree and place a inscribed stone at it's base. For more details and some great photos, please read a article I wrote on the subject. Till tomorrow.....
"Plant a Remembrance Garden"

Is your Yard or Garden Making You Sick?

It used to be that most people were only affected by allergies during the summer months, or during the times when plants and trees were dropping pollen. But anymore, so many are affected by such a host of different allergies that it has become a year-round problem. I believe the problem is that people just put up with their allergies, or take medication to combat the symptoms, instead of eliminating the source of the problem. If your allergy is caused by pollen, then you need to rid your yard & garden of the offending trees & plants. For more detail on how to do this, please read a article I wrote on the subject, "How to Plan a Low-Allergen Yard & Garden".

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Start your Garden Plan now......

A new year calls for a new plan for your yard or garden. If you've been thinking about doing over your landscaping or perhaps haven't lived long in your present home, you may want to start planning now. It can take months to decide what you want to do, get material lists ready or plan a budget. If you've never planned a yard or garden before, you may want to get some advice either from a professional or even a nursery owner who can help choose tree's and plants that will grow well in your area. Something you may want to think about is doing away with the majority of a lawn. We all have spent many hours, a lot of money and time, in maintaining a lawn. Having a large expanse of grass is something of an American custom, many people still have their property all covered in some kind of grass. I want to do away with all my grass, I have just decided that I'm tired of all the time I spend mowing, weeding, watering and buying chemicals to keep it lush and green. A major concern of mine is our well, at only 35', I worry about chemicals seeping into our aquifer system. If your interested in learning more about have a grassless landscape, please read an article I wrote on the subject.

"Consider a Grassless Landscape"