Busy as a Bee

With the hot weather driving me inside, I have been a whirlwind of busy busy. Painting the table and chairs ivory really set me off on a painting frenzy. The ivory just made such a difference and opened up the area making it appear brighter and larger. Sooo I just couldn’t take the duck egg blue for a minute longer and did this…

So much nicer! Of course then I was off to go through and organize about everything in the house. I have made a great amount of headway and several trips to the charity shop. Oh and I am still so in love with my Sunny spin bike. It am slowly increasing in intensity and distance and just enjoy it so much.

Remember the coffee bar that I only just completed? Well I just couldn’t live with that either. I didn’t really care for the style and, although I love that color, I am just liking everything ivory. So when I was clearing out the spare room to paint it, I came upon this shelf and with a bit of paint it became this…

I love how I can display some of my treasures and recent finds on this shelf. Eventually I will find just the right cabinet for this space, but for now I am happy with this set up.

I also did a few small projects and have more lined up. This frame was a dark brown and just ugly. A bit of paint brightened it right up!

I found this little cutie at the thrift shop and it was the most awful beige. I love how it turned out and just stuck a favorite quote in until I find just the right picture.

I will post pictures of the guest room next post. It was the most awful dark tan color and is now ivory. I put my desk in that room and added my collection of large antique frames on the wall for a simple yet elegant look. I had been wanting to get my desk out of the front room for a bit as it is always so very cluttered and I prefer to be able to close the door on the clutter and mess.

In all my sorting and clearing out, I also decided it was time to organize my huge button collection. My mom gave me a ton of buttons before she passed away and I have just left them sitting in a tote as I couldn’t bear to go through them. Well I finally got them out and spread all over the dining table as I sort through them. It is bittersweet, as so many we bought together years ago when my girls were little. Oh the fun we had with all our sewing and crafting. One memory so dear is when Erica my second was born and mother came to stay as she did with each of my babies. We decided to organize all our lace and wind it on cards we made from cardboard. I still have so much of that lace and still on those cardboard spools. Oh how I miss her and those days…..

My plan with so many many buttons is to make up button tins for my girls and sisters. I spent many hours as a child playing in mother’s button tin; sorting by like kind, color, or size.

In all my sorting, painting, and clearing out, I have gotten in a small bit of sewing. Christina, my eldest in Ireland, had asked if I would make them masks. So I watched youtubes and hunted down the best possible pattern. I did my first one for the hubby using an old cotton bandana at his request. I used the Jesse pattern, designed by an engineer and custom fit to your face size and shape. It will be a fun way to use of some of the wonderful novelty fabrics I have been collecting.

I have also been very slowly working on naughty bags for the Stitches Plus Purls etsy shop. I have been quite the snail in getting around to finishing the bags. But I did get quite burned out with making so many, so had determined to just work on them as the mood hit. I do adore this naughty fabric from Spoonflower. I am making us some bags with just the fabric and then used the leftovers to cut out saying and combine them with the ghastlies by Alexander Henry (the ghastlies with naughty sayings is the trademark of our bags).

I am a huge fan of numerous IG decorating accounts and YouTube channels. I just find so many amazing ideas and inspirations for my own home and crafty ideas. One of my favorite that I discovered quite some time ago is Shaye Elliot and The Elliot Homestead. I even have a few of her books. Well she just shared a way to preserve all those extra herbs (besides drying) and that is making herb salts. So I was off down that rabbit hole…

It is such a simple project and what a great way to add some additional favor to your meals. I made up a batch with sea salt and sage, rosemary, thyme, majoram, chives, garlic, and bay. Then I made a batch with just basil and garlic in pink himalyan salt. The house has smelled glorious while the salts have been drying. To make this you simply put salt into your food processor and then add your fresh herbs and garlic. Blend, let dry, and put into containers. I will be sharing these with all the girls.

I have a bit of a rant……I mail a lot of packages. I am a huge fan of sending care packages and don’t mind the postage, even to send off to Ireland. I feel the value of the care package is priceless. I have been collecting things for Becca’s first new home they recently purchased and with covid knew there would be not trips so packed it all up. Well it was 5 large boxes. I decided it would be easier to send UPS instead of dragging it all into my local PO. Now I only use the USPS as it is cheaper and trustworthy. But I decided to give UPS a try. NEVER AGAIN! The boxes arrived in short time but with 4 broken items. Now mind you I ship to Ireland as well as different areas of the USA and never ever has my USPS broken a thing. In fact I have often been a bit sloppy with my packing of fragile stuff and still no breakage. After this experience and sharing it, I heard that UPS is notorious for breakage and rough handling of boxes. Although the USPS is having a bit of a rough time right now with that new dasterdly head (please just kick him to the curb ASAP) and mail is slower, I still trust them. They are less expensive and a can trust my items (if I pack them correctly) will arrive in one piece not pieces! Just my little rant. I was so disappointed when she opened the boxes and not just one but 4 items were broken!! One was even a heavy candlestick. That box had to have been thrown or dropped from high. UPS you will not be getting my business again!!

Since my last PhD class on spirituality and health, I have really been looking for ways to expand spirituality into my daily life and live a life in which all things are sacred, especially the mundane, as after all that is what life is made up of. When the girls were young we celebrated all the holy days and seasonal changes. I wanted to incorporate that back into my life and ordered several books to that purpose. The one that I absolutely love and use daily is this book…

The author breaks the year into months and highlights all the days to celebrate and ideas for celebrations. But what I absolutely love is the prayers she has written for each month. They are so very beautiful and I say them outloud daily as they are like music in their beauty!

Each day focuses on a different thing. This particular Friday is Cherishing, but it can be water, harvest, thanksgiving etc. I just love this book and can’t say enough praise about it! That along with daily meditation, walking, using my spin bike, and reading other edifying books has honestly been a game changer. And boy howdy have I needed that as my youngest, Becca, and her family are battling the covid…. So far away, so sick, and it is just so scary and worrisome. Two weeks in and most are recovered except my daughter. I would sure appreciate prayers!! It is some scary stuff for sure that dastardly covid!

On the topic of spirituality, I have been finding feathers on so many of my walks. Feathers are a symbol of angels being near and a sign to know you are not alone. Look at these beauties! All so different.

I just love birds and do all I can to attract them into my yard. The last few times I have been sewing the tree outside my window has held a baby Robin just learning to try its wings and a hummingbird just hanging out. The are deep in the tree but I have the perfect view out the window and yet it does not disturb them. Such a joy and treat to watch!

And now, being Friday I must ready to head out and stalk the yard sales. But first to share one of my little finds that I kept for myself. Isn’t old shoe shine kit this just the cutest to hold my gardening implements right by my front door? The antique doll bed was also a find that was being tossed and just given to me!

And now off to have some great fun!

Happy August!

Patricia

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