Monday, September 30, 2019

Birthdays and Such

I am documenting some life before September gets away from us. I always feel like birthdays should be marked in the month that they occur. Lindsay and I have September birthdays while Jeff and Paul Allen have June birthdays. Lindsay was actually due two days before my birthday, but showed up real real late. 
My dear girl turned 30 this year. Being in the middle of the week, all we had time to do was a quick dinner with all of us meeting in the middle so to speak.

The birthday girl, Tucker, and Tyler.

McGuire's was the chosen spot. If you have been to Destin or Pensacola you have probably spotted the large green Irish pub. Those are the only two. It was so crowded in Destin still. Georgia had a fall break last week, so traffic was still a bit busy. 

We enjoyed our meal as they seated us in the back corner and all was good. The food was tasty. Tucker was happy. What more could we ask for?! I only snapped the picture above and one more of Lindsay since we were in the restaurant. Besides a pricey purse and some tops I gave Lindsay the gift of going to the Auburn game this weekend with Tyler and Jeff while I stayed back at the house with Tucker. Mother went to Auburn as well.

It was a very quick trip, but those are still fun.

I have meant to do this, but never have my phone with me or the dogs are pulling so that I can't really take pictures. I just love the little neighborhood where we bought the home in Auburn. It is just the cutest and was suppose to reminiscent of Charleston, but I think it is more St. Charles Avenue in New Orleans than Charleston. Our particular home is Charleston, but many of them remind me more of a smaller scale New Orleans style. There are so many cute door colors. I always think I need to share them. Saturday morning I just had Gus with me, so I snapped just a few. There are many more and lots more variety of colors.

Here is a sampling of them.

I really love this next one. I guess it is a mustard color. 

There are some really pretty olive green ones and of course some orange ones. One of those in particular is really pretty. I just didn't have time or patience with Gus to go get pictures of the others, but you get the idea. 

Several are stained as ours is. It needs redoing pretty bad and hopefully we can get that done soon. I like the stain too and really wouldn't want to paint that unless it was damaged in some way.

I am stitching and reading a book. I will share them when I am further along. Not too much to really see yet.

Tucker is moving around these days. Not walking yet by himself, but with the help of this cute cart I found at a second hand store he can get around pretty good. He made it all the way across the bedroom while I was cleaning. 

If you are wondering about all that get up on the door. I had a sheer and it didn't make the room dark enough for him to sleep in, so I had a piece of blue cloth. I just draped across the rod and then added a baby blanket for good measure. I have been saying for months I was going to make the fabric into a curtain and have yet to do it. Maybe showing you my pitiful attempt will shame me to get it done.

I will end September with one more decor picture. When I first started stitching the smalls I had planned to use this basket to make a display on my coffee table.

However, Gus came along and if it was sitting on the coffee table he thought it was put there to play with and possibly rip to shreds. He is better, but not nearly enough to risk my stitching to him.
Basically, my coffee table has become a place for Tucker to stroll around and a few toys to play with reside there.

I am not thinking it will be anything else for the foreseeable future. 

I had placed some the fall smalls around on the bookcase, but I decided to place these on my sewing counter. I have smiled each time I walk by. This room is also my laundry room, desk for bills and such, just life for Sandy. I think for now it is turning out to be a nice place to display them. I have some more to add as the month rolls on.

That is it for September. It has been fully documented. 

Kinda ready for just a bit of cooler weather; not cold... just cooler. Oh and some rain too...not a flood, just some rain.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

An Ornament Finish

I fully finished the ornament for Lindsay last night. They aren't the best pictures since I took them last night, but they are now documented. The colors don't look quite right either, but the reds are a little burgundy and the greens are a little green with a blue in them in real life.

I cleaned up my sewing counter and hopefully I can get the Christmas carols finished soon.

I will be back next week. I have a birthday for my daughter to celebrate and a trip to Auburn this weekend.

Monday, September 23, 2019

A Sewing Project

I made it into the sewing room one night last week to try and make a table runner.

I know I said no pumpkins until October 1st and for the most part that has been true. The only ones out are on the dining room table thus far. This set of pumpkins were a purchase I made when I first retired and went nuts buying way too much. These have made the cut to keep although finding the perfect spot for them hasn't been exactly easy.

They have tried out lots of rooms. They are great colors for the family room, but that is the room where IF I put too much I feel a little stir crazy. 

This year they have landed in the dining room which led to thinking I needed a table runner.

I had some linen like fabric. I pulled it out and measured what I wanted. I lined it which I wish I hadn't because you can see it has a bit of a roll in it. I think I should have just hemmed the edges and mitered  the corners. Oh well, Lesson learned.

I pulled out my machine embroidery and did a little design at each end and tried not to say any bad words as I did this. Long story with this machine. We definitely have a love/hate relationship.

I survived that so I tried to do just a decorative stitch found on regular sewing machines. I didn't plan the turn of the corners too well, but I have decided it works and I will quit trying to be such a perfectionist.

Who am I kidding? It just isn't glaring in my face like it would be in the kitchen, so I can hopefully tolerate it.

The pumpkins were a Joanns purchase and I haven't seen any like it since. I added some feathers and napkin ring flowers. I am always picking up feathers, rocks, acorns, leaves, etc.

So there ---another piece of the fall decor puzzle.

I am trying to add to my basket of fall pillows. I started a short stitch this weekend. I really have so many things I want to stitch, but I am going to try and whip this out this week with a few changes.

I plan to do the house a lighter color. I don't like the brown. I also am going to do something different with the alphabet, because I don't like that large W.

A little Tucker this morning on our walk. He was ready to roll today.

Breakfast. Grammie loves how he crosses his feet.

I will leave you with a fun picture. I pulled out some bracelets for church yesterday. Yes, the organized packrat has some real life VINTAGE bracelets.

The leather one is from 7th grade and the green ones were a gift from a friend for my Sweet 16 birthday party.

Anyone else still got bracelets from 1976 and 1973?

Happy fall,

Saturday, September 21, 2019

Some Fall Decor

I mentioned I wasn't feeling fall this year, but this past week I started out on it anyway. I pulled my boxes out and just looked at them. They sat on the dining table a day and I thought about fall decor.

So, let's talk about all the stuff that rolled around in my head. I didn't decorate for fall until I retired 5 years ago and then I went nuts and overboard. You can see some of that in the archives of my blog. I was so excited to be out of school and read so many blogs and decorating to the nines seemed to be the thing to do.

I even went out and bought way too much stuff.

I hated it in a month!!! Now, I am not minimalist by any means, but it was all too much for me.
Some of that purchased stuff has gone to Lindsay, some donated, and probably still going to sit in a box.

I began to think about this. I don't even remember Mother ever decorating for fall. She always had a nice table and put napkins of different colors on the kitchen table. I still do that! She would decorate the dining room table for Thanksgiving a little early and maybe something simple in the formal living room that adjoined. She always put a pretty wreath on the door.  That was it.

The week of Halloween I would put out two posters that my uncle had drawn in high school. Yes, I still have them because I keep everything. I would put the Jack-o-lantern and the friendly ghost in the dining room windows because they faced the front of the house and then we would put a pumpkin out on the front steps. You can't put those out too long in Florida. Trust me on that!!!

I started mulling over what I did in my classroom since I lived a lot of my life there and my kids were with me for much of that. I promise this diatribe is leading somewhere.

In mid September, I would do a leaf person art project and add leaves to the seasonal bulletin board and display those leaf people. Prior to that with our early August start, I decorated the seasonal bulletin board with a football and cheerleader decorated in the colors of the school with a few apples thrown in.

Sometime in later September, I would change out the football player and cheerleader to a scarecrow with lots of falling leaves. BTW, this seasonal bulletin board followed me all the way through my career. I kept a large calendar and the same monthly headers the whole way through on the seasonal bulletin board.

In October, I would add some pumpkins to it. I would do the most adorable art project with owls and would put them up with a full moon. WHoooo goes there?

When November rolled around, the scarecrow was removed and a cornucopia went up spilling out with goodness.

The more I thought about fall and how sick I get of it all by Thanksgiving it hit me what I would do this year. I am excited to tell you I have a plan.

Leaves, acorns, squirrels, feathers, (natural things) and a  little orange are out for September, Pumpkins will come out October 1st. 

A little Halloween will come out about halfway through October.

I found the most wonderful cornucopia basket by chance the other day. I wasn't even looking. It was like the stars aligned, so November is set with some Pilgrims and Indians, some turkeys, etc.

All slowly added and other things put away.

I simply can't stand the clutter of all it out. 

I will not be doing a fall tour, but adding a few pictures as I go with posts to let you see the slow go more me process.

I guess that is the good and bad of blogs. You can let it control you rather than just inspire you. You have to be true to yourself. 

Since you have survived the long talk, here is another kitchen picture. 

I use the island for cooking and prep work, so I usually add a little to this side counter. The flowers are from JoAnn's. They are so cute.

I promise there are acorns on the string here above the sink. I can't take a picture with that much light.

If you survived this I will be sharing more next week. A little at a time with my stitching. I simply had to start a fall project.

***NOTE...everyone should do what they feel and like. I know it is lots cooler elsewhere and pumpkins are completely appropriate. I love porches lined up with pumpkins and mums, but that is just not a go here.

Falling for autumn, 

Friday, September 20, 2019

A New Stitch

Lindsay saw an ornament on Etsy that she like and sent me a picture.  They were stitched and selling the actual stitched ornament.

I gave it some thought. I searched around Pinterest for freebies and basically just studied them all and created as I went. The idea for having Tucker on Tyler's shoulders was on one of the freebie downloads I saw, but as soon as I saw it I knew it was perfect.

Last Saturday for my birthday, Tucker arrived and left on his daddy's shoulders.

I am not sure I would ever want to do these in mass to sell, but I didn't mind doing it for my girl.

I took the picture last night after dark, so you can't see that the linen is white and has some sparkles in it. I plan to do my first oval finish on it. I will share next week with more details, but the chosen linen is perfect and this photo does nothing to show you that.

Stay tuned,

Thursday, September 19, 2019

The Changes to the Rosebeds

A not so pretty post, but one I want to have done so I can see the before and after come spring of next year.

The new plants have been in for a week. It hasn't rained any in September, so I have tried to water some to make sure they are good as they are new. Fresh pine straw is down. There is nothing spectacular to look at yet, but hopeful for next spring.

This on the right of the front door. Barbara, do you see that Florida yard art? It is real here in the Sunshine State or at least with my husband.

This is the left side of the front door.
There will no pictures of my usually flowered filled pots here or by the garage as they are completely kaput. I am really rethinking those next year. 

The back one has Lily of the Nile which is about the only thing to survive the summer heat, but it has been so dry that even it is looking very sad.

SOOOO....What did we plant? 

Two newer items found at Lowe's but grown fairly local in Loxley, Alabama were the choices. That is down in the tip of Alabama this joins the panhandle of Florida. Just to the west of us.

Three bottlebrush bushes on each side and two Nandina as well.

I am super excited about the bottlebrush bushes. Our church has the trees outside them and I was a party in someone's backyard one summer and they were amazing. They attract hummingbirds and there were dozens around them at this party. I was completely fascinated. They should not get too big either. The variety of Nandina will be a purple in color. 

I hope to add some white caladiums to the side yard next summer for some color. I had some red ones about halfway down, but I think the white will look better against all the green of the shrubs.

More yard art:)

The lemon tree is growing well. It is loaded with lemons and after this year's harvest, we hope to maybe trim it up some and shape it. They are beginning to turn yellow.

Basically, they are all in the lower half of the tree this year. It is only the second season we have had it. The lemons were delicious last year.

Like I said, it was not such an exciting post, but one I wanted to record.

Next up will be some slowly added fall decor and an ornament.

I seem to be on a roll this week.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Christmas Stockings

I finished stitching the Christmas stockings.
I used the French stitching book to find the letters that I mentioned here.

I will explain the ribbons in a bit.

I purchased the stockings from Amazon and bought extras for a growing family. It isn't really burlap exactly, but something similar with a sheen. I was able to guesstimate the holes and use it to add the cross stitched letters.

Here is a closeup of a letter. The holes were sometimes a little hard to see so they are definitely not perfect, but I couldn't love them more. I really wanted them to be cross stitched because that is my hobby.

I have one for Mama, me, hubby, son-in-law, daughter, son, his girlfriend, and grandson.

Since Tucker has the same initials as his dad, I added a little something extra to his stocking.

A puppy toy.

Jeff didn't think this was a good choice. His words were, "Will he still want that on there when he is 16?"  I told him I can change it then.

Now about those ribbons. I am going to attach a bow to each before hanging them up.
If you don't remember my thinking in choosing the colors, you can go back and read this post.

I know the votes will be as varied as the colors, but I am leaning towards two: the green or brown. It truly will depend on what they look like around the fireplace. One other thought is swirling around in my head...maybe some green tartan plaid ribbon.

Oh and I guess some of you will be wondering about the P.A. 
My son's first name Paul and his middle name is Allen and he goes by both. A good southern name. Some of his friends shortened to P. A. during Little League baseball. Believe me, this mama was none too happy. He goes by Paul Allen and prefers it although some of the guys call him by the initials. 
I decided to put P. A. on the stocking. He didn't think I should have; so who knows...I may have to change that one too.

And that is the story of the stockings.
We will have to wait until Christmas to see them again and see what color ribbon I use.


Monday, September 16, 2019

Some Stitching Plans and a Cute T-shirt

I mentioned I was putting my fall stitching on hold. I had a couple of things all set up to stitch when Lindsay sends me a text asking can I make an ornament. Then two days later she mentions something she thinks would look good in Tucker's big boy room one day. She thought I might need some time to work on it.

She is correct. 
When she was small I stitched her name. It hung above our bed in our previous home.

Here it is in her bedroom here at home.

She was in middle school by the time we moved here, so it was relegated to above the closet doors.
It is still there.

She would like for me to do Tucker's name, but make it sea animal or beach related. I will be doing navy blue letters and adding things around the letters. Mary from Stitching Friends Forever has already sent me some patterns to pull some sea creatures to add. I think I can design something really cute with the patterns she sent. Thanks Mary. You are awesome.

Another example of how wonderful our stitching community is.

The ornament Lindsay wants is a family ornament. She saw some stitched on Etsy with a daddy, mommy, doggie, kid...kind of like the stick people on the back windows of cars except these aren't stick people.

I am going to just wing this and make it. I sort think they are boxy like Legos so I can handle this.

I will be doing that first and then starting the name. 

Once I get it going I think I can stitch on some other stuff then.

When the kids were over the other night I remembered I still had Paul Allen's first Auburn shirt bought in Auburn in his bin of keepsakes. We pulled it out and Tucker is going to wear it for now. 

Here is Tucker in it.

Here is Uncle Paul Allen in it circa 1993.


I completed the Christmas stockings tonight. I will share them in my next post.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Family Time Fun Day

Yesterday was a wonderful day!


I had a birthday.

I got the roses I asked for. Aren't they pretty?

The day started with a trip to the park to get some energy out of Gus. We have had to train Gus to catch a Frisbee. Well, we are working on it. The reason is ---Lemony can NOT restrain herself with a tennis ball. She is getting older and ends up all messed up every time she chases the ball. She is relegated to walks these days. While Gus retrieved 

she wanted my very fresh banana nut bread from the Starbucks run before we went to the park.

Not a bad start to the day.

We then put down some straw in the redone flower beds that I promise I will share soon.
We did a few more chores.

Then came a trip to the mailbox.
I almost squealed with delight when I opened a very unexpected package.
The person who gifted me a very special gift didn't know it was my birthday, but she made the day even more special.

You see I read this post last week from Carol at Stitching Dreams and once again admired her beautiful stitching. I even read this in the post

The tiny pillow below was sent off to a friend as a little surprise. I hope she likes it!

and thought how lucky someone was going to be.

Imagine my surprise when I found this in a package addressed to me.

I quickly texted Arlene at Nanaland. WE both agreed the stitching community is very special.

Carol, I love it!

Then it was family time.
Y'all know I love family time and consider myself so blessed to have both my kiddos close.

We had fish, cheese grits, salad, pie and cheered on our Auburn Tigers. Here are a few scenes from the evening.

Tyler (son-in-law), Tucker, and Hallie (their dog).

Jeff, Paul Allen (son), Katie (his girlfriend), and Tucker.

I realized later that I didn't get a picture of Lindsay the whole evening. I was so disappointed. She did so much. She wouldn't let me cook or make anything. I was really proud of her. She has a birthday this month as well. I will make up for my lack of pictures. If we hadn't been trying to eat and get it all done by kick off for the game I would have been a better photographer. 

AUBURN FOOTBALL kind of rules in our house.

I said I wanted nothing but roses, but I snagged an app for my phone...such a nerdy thing, a bird call, and a cool t-shirt.

All original parts as noted in the t-shirt are important in our house. Jeff broke his hip early in his life and has had a hip replacement and a revision surgery. He says medical stuff is all great, but no one can top original parts.

Gus felt a need to be in all pictures.

Lemony and Gus.
I will be back later this week with what I am stitching for Lindsay and the new flowerbeds.
Happy for another year of life,
Sandy more picture of the roses.

Saturday, September 14, 2019

A Quick Stitching Post

I had hoped to get on this week and do a post, but time has gotten away from me. This will be a quick stitching share and I will be back next week with life updates, flowerbed updates, and more.

I got the cotton boll back from the framer's. I am as pleased as punch with it.

This is going to the Auburn house. I am going to hang in the living room. It will replace a sampler that can then move to that bedroom wall where I hung the Helen Keller sampler. I will be going up at the end of the month and will take pictures to share.

Just love it!!!

I also finished an ornament for Tucker. This is from the little French cross stitch pattern book I got from Amazon. I see many more of these in my future. It is stitched on 28 count even weave in a light blue.

My fall stitching has taken a side turn. I had several smalls all kitted up, but Lindsay has put in some orders, so fall is tucked away until next summer. I am happy that she is requesting some things. I will share them more in the future.

Like I said a quick pop in today.

See ya next week,