May 20, 2018:

Hola!

Yesterday Prince Harry married American Meghan Markle and I couldn't get enough of the royal wedding. What a gorgeous dress, the bride was radiantly beautiful and the church at Windsor - oh my goodness, the flowers alone were soooo beautiful. There's nothing like a good love story to make one appreciate how precious we can be (and should be) to each other.

I'm glad the weather was perfect yesterday for the new Duke and Duchess of Sussex's wedding. I can't say the same for around here. Spring keeps teasing and then going away. This morning I woke up to a "balmy" 47 degrees F outside, rain, damp, and I turned the heat back on! It's May 20th, the heat. should. not. be. on. Period.

Last Thursday, however, was beautiful. I was able to get a goodly amount of yard and garden clean-up done over several days last week. I also took some photos of my flowering tree anchoring the north corner of my house and made the current collage. I think it's an ornamental cherry, and on the the other end of the house, I think that's called a purple sand cherry? I'll have to check that. The blossoms on the tree do not have a distinct fragrance, but the purple shrub that wants to be a tree (despite my hacking it back, back and back yearly - I'm losing, by the way) has myriad blossoms with a distinct fragrance. I can't decide if the scent is too beautiful to bear or too awful to smell, it certainly can be overpowering!

This coming week will be the third cut of the grass this season. We had rain late Friday night and then for several hours earlier this morning. This rain, on top of the rain we had over four days the prior weekend, and the grass is growing like nobody's business! I don't mind doing the grass, though, as long as it's not too hot, too cold, not raining, and not too windy. I'm not picky at all, am I...

I still have a lot of raking out of areas that suffered from snow mold over the winter, and have not yet really tackled cleaning out the north flower bed in the backyard. That will be a chore!

But Memorial Day weekend is coming. This coming Saturday I will be out with a friend (who has a nice large van - goody!) stocking up on potting soil, top soil to fill in never-ending low spots in the yard, grass seed, and lots of plants! For some reason, this spring seems busier than those in prior years. I can't figure out why that is...

Jan

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Some Really Cool Ideas...

I should be in bed already.  At the very least, I should be earnestly scrubbing up and getting ready for bed.  It's sleeting cats and dogs outside now and it will be an absolute bitch to ice-skate the 9 block trek to the bus stop tomorrow morning.  By rights, I should leave at least 20 minutes earlier than normal, because I will have to walk like a duck in order to make it safely (I hope) from here to there.  Damn!  But - hark!  Is that the Herald Angels I hear singing?  Hell no.  It's the Channel 4 weatherman who says it will get WARMER tonight (up to 50 degrees F) and so by morning all the ice will be gone and we should see nothing but rain.

Yeah.  Right.  Perhaps it will finally be time to try out my Yaks Traks!!!

Anyway, I got this nutso crazy idea in my head this morning about "doing" the mantle for Easter/Oestre (in honor of the Mother Goddess)/Spring and it's taken nearly complete hold of me already.  Geez!  I actually nearly ran over to the TJMaxx in the downtown Mall during lunch hour earlier today and -- thank Goddess! -- a few of those really cute small bird plates were still at hand!  I grabbed one with "pinky" birds and one with "yellowy" birds; then I saw a larger square-shaped plate with pink and blue birds on it in a sort of "Oriental Abstract Moderne" take -- well, you'll just have to wait to see the photos.  I said "YES" and added that to my "to buy" pile.  Then I saw this ceramic basket in blues, greens and naturals with two little "blue birds" perched on its rim and that was also added to the "to buy" pile.  And, while I was in the check-out line (I kid you not, but I swear they film you and do it on purpose...) I came across this little ceramic bird in a lovely creamy white color.  She was decorated with small openings in a criss-cross pattern and I thought she must be a votive.  I grabbed her and added her to my stash as I was summoned to Check-Out Number Two.  Unfortunately, the opening she has in her bottom is not large enough to fit a votive candle inside (real or battery-operated) but right now she is stuffed with pleasantly scented something-or-other.  She's a sachet! 

Three plates, the ceramic bird "sachet" and the ceramic "Easter" basket all rang in under $19.  Thank you, TJMaxx!

But I digress!  I wanted to just show you these neato things instead, both of which I found at Budget Wise Home blog -- and she gave me such inspiration!

First:

In her entry from February 23, 2012 under the heading "New Uses for Everyday Things" comes a revelation about using a cup and saucer to make an elevated serving tray!  I've seen plates glued to wine glasses, etc. and I've pretty much thought "how cute" or even "how clever" before, but I don't recall seeing this particular rendition of a very good idea!  And just tonight, when I was trying this, that and the other thing trying to get an "elevated" area to "install" a really cute bird house as part of my Easter/Oestre/Spring mantle display and driving myself absolutely nuts, if I had only seen this beforehand!  Duh!

Image from Budget Wise Home
Well, I've heard it said that suffering improves the soul or something like that. Not sure I believe that, mind you, but the Goddess Giveth and the Goddess Taketh Away. I am definitely going to try it out if I can find the right cup/saucer or plate combination in the next few days - otherwise, it will have to wait.  Because, wouldn't you know it, I came up with an alternative solution using what I already had on hand in the meantime (earlier tonight, while watching "The Biggest Loser" and tearing through my cabinets and various stashes of stuff to see what I could come up with), and no gluing was involved. And I'm kinda liking what I came up with.  Probably because I came up with it and not because it looks so hot.  But, hey!

Second:

If you are a reader here (har!) you'll have seen that recently I've just become absolutely nutso obsessed with birds and, evidently, have been absolutely nutso obsessed with them for years but didn't realize it until, more or less, around February 10, 2012 when I started tearing my bedroom apart, determined to "redo" it.  Anyway, tonight I saw this absolutely gorgeously stunning idea for a BIRD MOBILE, and it just made me gasp for oxygen.  I mean it! 

Check out Budget Wise Home's post on this "bird mobile" from February 28, 2012.

Image from Budget Wise Home
This clever idea -- that can be realized in so many different ways other than cutting out any material or any hand-sewing (or machine sewing) at all - Well, Darlings!  It is totally cool and have given me an idea to try out where I won't have to sew anything, but I will have to come up with some already-made artificial birds.  I feel a visit to Michael's and/or Joanne Fabrics coming on in the near future...

Okay, so how did they get the clear fishing line so neatly "stuck" to the sticks?  Are those little jewely hooky-things I spy screwed into those branches?  Whoa!  Way too technical for me and my big fat clumsy fingers!    But I'll figure something out...

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