FALL IS IN THE HOUSE

 

Fall is here.  Have you enjoyed a few cool mornings lately like I have?  Feels nice, doesn’t it?  It has taken a while but I have gotten my fall decor out to spruce up the house.  I love to walk through and see the autumn touches that remind me of this lovely season.

The front door…

This beautiful wreath was a gift from Shirl and Tina quite a few years ago…one of my favorites!  Bought these fall colored ferns this year at Hobby Lobby.  There are 3 bushes in each pot.  Love the tie in with the wreath and the door!

The mantel…done in whites this year…

This beautiful vase was a gift from sweet Suzanne for my birthday.  It looks like a hollowed out log…and was the inspiration to go with whites and twigs on the mantel this year!

I wasn’t sure I liked the church in this spot and was contemplating trying something else.  Levi heard me talking to Suzanne about it and said, “Lulu, I like that church.  I think you should not move it!”  And, so it stayed.  Smart boy.  The church was a gift from Ian many years ago.

The coffee table…

I found these needle felted pumpkins just this week at TJMaxx.  They yelled at me so loud, that I had to put them in my buggy just to quieten them!  They are fabulous!  Found the ‘Grateful and Blessed’ pillows at Hobby Lobby this year!

 

Levi’s tree…with all decorations done by him..with a little help from Lulu. He decorates the island next to his place and loves to put these teeny tiny ornaments on this teeny tiny tree.  The truck is an antique from the 40’s.  Bought it in Franklin, Tenn.  Looks like it has seen much play over the years, doesn’t it?

 

 

 

The big table…

Love my dishes from Pier One from several years back.  They are melamine, but sure don’t look like it!  Found the glasses at HomeGoods.  Cloth napkins are from TJMAXX last year.

 

The buffet…

 

Don’t you love the colors on these floral picks?  Found them at Hobby Lobby this year.  They have either a gourd or a pumpkin on each.  Bought the small cotton pieces there, too.  They came in a bag of about 20.

A piece I did several years ago…love this verse!

 

 

Enjoyed sharing my home with you.  Hope your fall season is full of cozy gatherings with lots of hot cocoa!  Oh, and candy corn, too!   Enjoy!

 

 

SPRING IS COMING AGAIN…

Spring, as usual, is a fickle girl!  It has been so nice and warm here in Dothan…and then BAM!!! out of the North Pole blows this frigid blast of air that has stayed around too long to suit me!  It is 40 degrees here as I write!  Last week, kids were in shorts and Birkenstocks!  Of course…it does give us Southern ladies another chance to wear our boots…and the kids get to wear their big coats their parents bought for the two or three days they actually need it!

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I love spring!  All the newness and the budding out and the green taking over again!  It’s so lovely!  I decorated my house for Spring and Easter right after Valentine’s.  I know it was quite early, but I put a lot of effort into decorating and I like for it to last a while!  Decorating my house is a creative outlet that feeds my soul.  I wish I could just go house to house and decorate for any one that wants it!  I will share some pictures of my work with you.  First, my mantel…

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Levi’s tree and bunny…

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My dining room table…

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Centerpiece close up  on table…

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Close up…

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A little arrangement I put together…the moss bag was a gift from sweet Suzanne…added some greenery and small stems cut from a larger bush…

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Levi’s spring art…

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Here is a project I worked on yesterday…

 

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Found this great little moss basket…hollow inside…and reinforced with wire rods.   Sorry I didn’t make a pic before I filled it..

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I added a styrofoam ball to the space and covered it with more loose moss.  Then I found these silk ranunculus that were so pretty.  They had them in several color variations, but I love white flowers!  They were bundled into groups of 7.  I bought 4 bundles.

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So in this project I used 23 flowers.  Of course, if you like the look of seeing the stems, you could use less.  But I love the look of the flower heads packed together closely.

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After I finished, I filled in any blank spaces with more of the loose moss…

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While I was at the store, I found this beautiful birds nest on a branch.  It needed a lot of fluffing, but isn’t it lovely?

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I added it to the base of the flower arrangement…and love the look!  You could always lift the basket on a stack of books or even a cake plate surrounded by little eggs  and more moss if you need the height.

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I hope you enjoy decorating like I do.  It is a creative outlet for me.  If you don’t have a lot of spring decor…start small and just buy a few things all along. I have 3 wonderful silk greenery garlands that I use most every season.  It’s wonderful filler.

Here is a picture of Suzannes’s mantel…you can see the same garland here…

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Hobby Lobby has all their spring and Easter at 40% off.  I’m sure Jo-Ann’s and Michael’s does too.   And, if you live close to a Home Goods or TJ Maxx, you can score big time there…just buy it when you see it, it won’t be there when you go back!  I speak from experience!  Remember that you can download coupons for all these stores on your phone and use one each time you shop.  (For my friends who are local…the flowers, moss basket and bird’s nest came from Inside Accents.)

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LEARNING WITH LEAVES

Levi told me he was ready to do an art project.  Hmmm!  I didn’t have anything in mind that day.  So I suggested we go on a walk outside and see if we came up with a good idea.  He loves to walk down to the  wooden bridge that covers a small creek on the road to our house.  It’s a perfect place for a little boy.  And he has loved it since he was able to walk.

We found the beginnings of fall laying on that bridge.  Leaves beginning to turn, acorns, sticks, a great rock that rolls.  He put it all into his bag.  We came back to the house and poured it out on the paper.  Then we began to touch and explore them.  UH! OH!  We discovered that some of the ones he picked up were crackly and dry.  They fell to pieces in his hand.  He said that’s because all the juice had gone out of them.  Which is a pretty good way to explain it I think.  Some were a little crinkly around the edges and some were nice and supple.

 

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I unrolled a nice piece of clear contact paper, and took the backing off.  ( You can find the clear contact paper at Michaels or HL and even Wal Mart).  We took the leaves and laid them face down on the sticky paper.  He worked carefully arranging the leaves to his liking.  Even though he was so certain he could add the rock into the design, it jut wouldn’t hold it.  He ended up making 3 collages.  One for his tree here, one for his tree at home, and one for his Mia and Papa.

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We added another sheet of the sticky paper to the top and then he commenced to rolling them as flat as he could. We used a hard rubber brayer, but a rolling pin would work, as well.Also, be sure you leave a large enough margin around the leaves that you can get a good sealed edge when you add the top layer.  It’s necessary to seal those edges well…just rub top and bottom margins  together with some force. There will be some space that won’t stick around the leaves.  That’s OK.  As the leaves dry, the paper will flatten out.   Then we punched a hole at the top…he had to tell me which was the top…and then he chose cord to make a hanger.

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How nice they look!  They would also look pretty just hanging in the window!  Depending on how you cut the contact paper…you can make lots of shapes.  They make great book or Bible markers.  You can always add in some words or a Bible verse.  Or write on it with a Sharpie.

Levi and I did this same project a few weeks ago…before the leaves started turning.  We hung them in the window in the studio and watched them as the color in the leaves faded day by day.  These all started out green…with one white flower.  This is about 2 weeks later.

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What is so neat is that now he can really see how the veins in the leaves give it its shape.  We call these leaf skeletons.

 

 

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A little later on we’ll talk about that big word ‘chlorophyl’.  [Another Lulu/Levi project]

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FALL IS IN THE AIR

We have been slowly adding some touches of fall to our house.  Levi loves to help.  Especially if painting or gluing is involved!  Here is a package of burlap leaves I picked up at HL.  They have a wire attached for hanging.  $4.99 a pkg…16 in each. 40% off.  I set Levi up with his watercolors and showed him pictures of how fall colors seem to blend right into one another.

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These are the colorful leaves he did with his watercolors…

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And here are some I did with acrylic paints…

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He painted with abandon!  Be sure to put something under the leaves if you do this…paint seeps right through.  You can also use regular acrylic craft paint for heavier coverage.  WARNING…acrylic craft paint is NOT washable,  Will NOT wash out of clothes!  We used kids washable watercolor palette.

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Once dry, he hung them his fall tree.  Then …on his own, he decided to paint pumpkins and acorns and cut them out.  I imagine we will add quite a few more things before the season ends!

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I set my big table with dishes and glasses from Pier One.  These are all melamine…but have a rustic weathered look to them.  The runner is an antique piece given to me by Shirl and Tina.  It is all hand wrought and such a treasure of mine.  Th napkins came in a pkg. of 12 from TJMaxx.  They had only 1 package!!!.  My table seats 10 and many times I’m out of luck when it come to having enough of one pattern for my table.

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I want a candle burning all the time!.  But, it sure frustrates me to get one that may put off a tiny bit of scent…or smell until the top layer of wax melts.  This is one of the best candles I’ve found anywhere.   The scent lasts through the whole candle.  It’s from Wal Mart and is their MainStays Label.  I use different scents all year.  A favorite is Cranberry Melon.  They have a myriad of fragrances to choose from, but this is a yummy smelling pumpkin and it’s scents travels from one room all through the house.  Another plus…the label pulls off neat and clean so you do not have to advertise where you got it.  And some prefer just a glass candle holder.  A sure winner all around!

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I went on to deck my mantel for the season.  I found this nice sign that appealed to me with its clean lines.  The writing is done on natural burlap atop a stained wooden frame.  This cute fall couple is made of heavy tin and was waiting patiently for me to pick them up at Tuesday Morning.  I used a greenery garland with fall foliage picks to lay a base.  Then added fall decorative books and 3 wooden stained pumpkins.  It’s a little different than I’ve done before, but I really like the color with the rocks in fireplace.

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This is the buffet behind my table.  The leaf garland is intertwined with teeny tiny lights…

 

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I did go over and help Suzanne, my daughter-in-love, with her mantel, as well.  I think it looks so festive!

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And that is the extent of my decorating for fall this year.  Unless something else grabs my attention.  And, of course, whatever masterpieces Levi creates must be proudly displayed.  The nice thing about his little tree is we can hang everything right in one spot!

Hope you are getting ready to enjoy the changing of seasons where you live.  Here, we don’t really have much fall weather…just a little cooler than summer.  All this decorating just makes us feel like it’s fall!  Blessings to you and yours!

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A FLING IN TENNESSEE

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With my partners in the hunt for all things old and rusty and distressed, Shirl and Tina and I headed north to Franklin, Tennessee for a few days of fun, shopping, catching up, good food and …shopping.  This was the weekend of the City Farmhouse Pop-Up Show in Leiper’s Fork, TN, close to Franklin….close to Nashville.

First of all, Franklin is such a neat town…with lots to do.  Cute little shops and terrific places to eat.  We spent two days exploring the shops and discovering little antique stores…finding little treasures all along the way!  We all did some Christmas shopping…both for giving and decorating!  Here…a few pictures from around town.

 

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Look…It’s MY store…

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Great lunch here…

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The bottles say…FAMILY and FRIENDS…perfect!

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Acting silly in a Christmas store…we all bought a hat for our grands…but we had to make sure they were cute first!

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Oh, what fun this was!  Over 150 vendors from all over the U.S.  It was everything we love!  The grounds were beautiful and it was just delightful being out in God’s beautiful world!

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city-farmhouse-basketAll too soon, Sunday rolled around…

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…another fun adventure in the books…sweet memories made…and friendship bonds stronger than ever!  Till next time, friends!

 

*********Picture credits…..#1,9,14,17,18,19,20,21….The City Farmhouse…..all others…Tonja Owens.**********

 

JACKSON TURNS SIX

Early Saturday morning, Suzanne and I turned our car toward Birmingham.  The occasion…Jackson’s sixth birthday party.  We arrived before lunch and let Jackson dive right in to the presents we had brought from family in Dothan.

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A stop for a quick photo with Lulu, and then off to the YMCA for an afternoon full of festivities!

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The weather was just perfect for the party.  There was a wonderful tented area in the back for the cake and ice cream, and around a corner was a pool just fit for a group of 30! kids to spend a warm…quite warm…afternoon!  Jackson had requested a Lego Star Wars Party and Tina went all out to insure it was one of a kind!  Following are the cake…yes, it’s ALL edible!  Then the cutest accessories for the table that Tina fashioned herself!

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Colorful table cloths and loads of balloons finished off the decor!  It was a little boy’s dream!

 

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Then, on to the pool…

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Ian was called into duty by Jackson….

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…and to help little Levi…

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Someone HAD to do it…the ladies were too busy getting aquainted and visiting…under the only shade in sight!  It was wonderful spending some time with some of those who are so close to Tina.

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A picture of this new sweet family…

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We were all hot and tired, so pizza was the order for supper.  Tina kept the boys entertained while we waited for the delivery man to arrive.  ( Levi couldn’t wait, and we had to dig out some chicken nuggets!)

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Then none of us lingered long…our beds and couches were calling us all!  Levi was the first to awake this morning and that meant soon we were all to follow!  A few quick pictures and it was time for Suzanne to drive us back to Dothan!

Cousins…on Jackson’s sixth birthday

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My own two sweet ‘daughters-in-love’…

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I grabbed a quick moment with my boy…

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As we travelled, Suzanne and I replayed the fun we had at the party and the sweet time we had visiting with Tina, Ian, and Jackson….

Levi, however, had a better way to spend the time driving home!

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“God has given us these times of joy.”  Nehemiah 12:43