December 4, 2016: Hola everyone! Winter has arrived in Milwaukee and there are snow flurries today. Despite several hard freezes remarkably my "spikes" in two of my patio planters have absolutely refused to die. The rosemary and thyme plants I nursed inside the house through last winter spent the summer in their pot outside next to the side stoop off the driveway, where they get plenty of sunshine all day long. I transplanted them into a cozy sheltered spot right next to the stoop in October and they are still green and growing, too! With the delay in getting the drywall patching done in the relatively minor "reconstruction" work I had done in my kitchen, I am way behind my time in getting the house decorated. But yesterday I got my wreath decked out with extra lights and dressed the front door of the house, and my battery-operated traditional candles were put up on the window sills all around the house Friday evening. It becomes a ritual to go around at dusk and turn the tops to the right to turn the candles "on" and at bedtime to go around and turn the tops to the left to turn the candles "off." Today I put some "glittery" throw pillow covers purchased new last month from H&M on three of my sofa pillows to glam things up a bit in the living room and add some sparkle. Later on, after I sufficiently fuel myself up with wine and snacks and probably to distract myself while I listen to the Packers game on the radio, I will huff and puff and pull my artificial tree up from storage in the basement. I will decorate it simply this year. Every year I say that, and every year I end up throwing just about everything except the kitchen sink on the tree. I am very proud of myself this year, though. I did not buy a single new ornament or Christmas doo-dad for the house (throw pillow covers don't count!!!) Happy Holidays to all, with hope and fervent prayers for 2017. I've a feeling we're all going to need a lot of help from Goddess in the coming year. Jan

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Spring Mantle

Just in time for a nasty storm yesterday evening (the worst part hit during evening rush hour):

I reached a more or less satisfactory detente with my mantle, that in a fit of decoratitis I had decided a few days before to "decorate" for Spring!  Yeah, right, Jan.

Crappy "before" photo taken a few nights ago -- not very good but you get the general idea, I can be rather minimalist in my approach to "decorating," LOL!  That's the only place in the room for the t.v. and it's staying there.  At least in this photo you can't see the rabbit airs with tinfoil tips and the bent-up hanger that supposedly gives better reception (a Mr. Don assertion) is nearly invisible!

Here's the "after"!  I'm pretty happy with it.  However, I don't think the upside down fishbowl is quite the look of refined elegance I was going for.  I'm going to experiment this evening with making my own "cake stand" out of a big glass with a long stem and a plate plopped on top to see if that works to elevate the bird house where I want it. 

These things are new:  (1) the two small bird plates on either side near the front; (2) the square bird plate on the left; (3) the tall stemmed candleholder in a lucious shimmery pastel green.  All were purchased at TJMaxx and the candleholder was on clearance so I got an even better deal than usual on that.  Everything else I shopped the house for.  I was absolutely amazed how much stuff I was able to gather from here and there to put a "spring" look together!

The side table.  The little ceramic bird with holes (it's a sachet) and the papermache bird "book" (it's a trinket box and I fell in love with it the second I cast my eyes upon it) are both from TJMaxx.  The old tulip pic was a Target acquisition from eons ago.  The enameled and brass egg on stand was purchased in Las Vegas during a 2001 visit.  I am probably going to swap out the pic.  I found some beautiful colored bird photos on the internet and if they print out clearly I have a frame that I want to use that will perfectly tie together the look on the mantle and the look on this side table.

Creative chaos!  A lot of stuff cluttering the coffee table, various things I tried on the mantle and side table, things I tried on and off the walls, and things I'm going to experiment with on the dinette table later. 

A final photo - see the tinfoil-tipped rabbit ear?  LOL!  I thought this would be an "easy" project that I could whip together in one 30-minute session one night after work.  WRONGO!  I dithered with this and that, slid things around, added things, removed things, threw things through the window, etc. etc.  Nearly every single item in my "storage" kitchen cabinet was washed and examined for possible use.  Well, that's one way to get spring cleaning done around here. 

No fancy close-ups -- I'm not very good at those anyway.

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