Tag Archive | crafting

American Made

I am crazy, maybe even borderline obsessed,  about the Ball American Heritage Collection Canning Jars. Last year when the vintage style blue ones began showing up on the shelves at Walmart, I bought not one dozen…..or two dozen…..but three dozen of them. Actually, whenever I pop into Walmart for another purchase, I still can’t resist walking down the canning aisle to see just how many they have left. When it comes to these babies, that line between needs and wants really gets blurry for me!


So, imagine my reaction on  Friday afternoon when I discovered that now they have come out with VINTAGE GREEN! I will have to say that picking up that box of six quart size jars for $11.67 put a big, ole’, goofy smile across my face….even the cashier noticed it, because he called out “Happy Canning” as I walked away from the checkout! Little did he know that I have never really canned in my life; nor, do I ever have any intention to!


When I opened my new box of goodies, I noticed the story of the Ball Mason Jars printed on the side. I was unaware that the three styles between 1913-1915 were called the “Perfect Mason”, the “Perfection” and the “Improved”. Also, shortly after World War I, the jars were discontinued. So, they really are a piece of American History. Last, but not least, these jars are made in America!


The beautiful blue jars are the “Perfect Masons” and the gorgeous green jars are “Perfection”. I am anxious to see what tint the “Improved” will be when they are released.  After searching a bit on Google, I have a feeling that they might be amethyst or amber in color. Ironically, I discovered that there are some other nuts out there that are obsessed with these jars – go figure! There are even some YouTube Videos about the Ball Canning Jars.


IMG_0769I wonder what the Walmart cashier would think about my vintage green chandelier!?!?!

God Bless America and I still have that goofy smile on my face – Happy Creating!

With Love,                          


Life’s Ladders

Why do I rush to “get it all done”

When much of the process is most of the fun!


I DREAM of the weekend, each day of the week.

Those two days for me, when I’m at my peak!


But what of the multiple days in between…….

When unscheduled challenges take on the lead.


Upon setting a goal, I know that each time

I must start at once, with the end in my mind.

End“, for me, is a powerful word,

Yet rushing to get there is totally absurd.


My journey through life makes me who I am!

The good times and hard times are ALL part of God’s plan.


Have I grown to learn – or just learned to grow?

This mystery, it seems, is all part of life’s show….


What a week its been! As a result, I have done a great deal of reflecting this morning. My husband has really found it quite humorous that I have taken to painting and decorating ladders. Not to mention, I have been using them in unconventional ways! Hmmmm, the things that I have to do to keep him laughing!

My analogy for the post today: Ladders consist of steps/rungs (as does life)! Now,  I am going to go and try to ‘enjoy’ the process of cleaning my house!

With Love,


“In Like a Lion…..Out Like a Lamb”


March is almost over!! WH-A-T, surely not! I am very concerned that at 48 years of age,  I have  become like an adolescent child on summer vacation – the days between the beginning and the end have all become a blur! Actually, I realized today, that while everyone else is transitioning into the month of April I am still transitioning into the year 2014! Okay,  okay, so lately I guess that I have not been too quick on my feet. Jeepers!  Where does the time go? I would really love to say that I have been super productive this month and therefore I have lost track of time  (mmmmmhmmm. that’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it), but really, it all boils down to that famous quote:

The road that is covered with huge boulders or obstacles was truly paved with good intentions!

(I may have done a bit of altering to the wording above to fit my own experiences and age)

The month did come in like a lion…. but, if you live in central Texas, it is not going out like a lamb. We are expecting severe weather throughout the remainder of the week. In years past, at this point,  I had already planted my garden, pulled weeds, and replaced mulch by now! I had even sanded pieces of furniture that were in desperate need of a seasonal makeover. I had refinished the deck  so that we could do most of our evening meals outside. ALAS……this year- dad.gum.it, No Such Luck!!! In other words, this weather is  not in alliance with my Obsessive Compulsive Personality.

 IMG_0700Gracie has been waiting patiently to dig in the garden!

(by the way, she loves relaxing on my drop cloth pillows –

and, I love the fact that she thinks that they were made just for her)

I want to share a project that I did! Actually, other than the cost of paint, this project was FREE! I just love it when all of the stars are aligned in my favor and I find a real treasure sitting out by someone’s trash dumpster. This table had really been through the ringer, but it had soooooo much potential!



After sanding it down, I painted the base with Valspar’s Black Onyx (paint and primer in one) I couldn’t bring myself to paint the top because the wood grain looked so pretty after the years of wear and tear had been sanded away. So I stained it with Minwax’ Dark Walnut.  Before sealing it with Polycrylic, I  mixed up just a bit of the black paint with some antiquing gel and rubbed it across the top! I am very happy with the way that it turned out. Also, did I mention that it was FREE??



I made a burlap runner to go across the top – throw on a white pitcher with some flowers and it is enough to make a person stand back, admire it, and feel pretty proud! I wish that my pictures had turned out a bit better.  I was so pleased with how this one turned out that I made another one for my son and his wife (one of my favorite couples I might add.)

Taylor and Kori's Wedding Pictures 056Aren’t they precious?

With Love,                       


Spring Break – To Clean or Not to Clean, That is the Question

Day One of Spring Break for Teachers: SLEEP!

Day Two of Spring Break for Teachers: Rest, while watching mindless romance movies on Lifetime Television.

Day Three of Spring Break for Teachers: Dust off the list that was made, during the last bad weather day, of projects to complete during Spring Break.

Day Four of Spring Break for Teachers: Time to start deep cleaning so that you can attend to the list that was made, during the last bad weather day……

Day Five of Spring Break for Teachers: Time to PANIC, because the week has gone by (where did the time go) and all you can do is check off the first two items on the list that was made, during the last bad weather day!


Car Key Mishap – The Best Laid Plans of Mice and Men Often Go Astray!

There is something to be said for the 30 minute sitcoms! We love them because all problems are solved in a short period of time with humor.  Well, let me just tell you – in case you have been misled by the appearance of reality in the sitcom – no problem is solved in 30 minutes.  Also, no matter how lighthearted you try to explain your ‘mishap’ to your family, they don’t seem to address it with the same humor as the characters on “Modern Family“.

Shower Cake  March 2014exhibit A

So, here is how yesterday all played out for me (in more than 30 minutes)!!! I awoke at approximately 4:30 am to work on a baby shower cake that was to be delivered at 10:30 am. I was rolling along, feeling pretty good about my finished product and I even had time to take pictures of the finished product before leaving the house (exhibit A). I delivered the cake, right on time, and left the location with visions “of cleaning up the house, so I could grant myself permission to craft” dancing in my head!

This is where things get a bit fuzzy – maybe it was time for a commercial break which would shorten the 30 minute, happy ending sitcom to an actual 20 minutes. Anyway, I  pulled the car into the garage upon arriving home and shut the garage door. Then – I know, let’s not argue over minor details – I fully intended to walk into the kitchen to start cleaning up, but I decided to get my computer out of the back of the car to update my blog (remember, I was feeling good about the cake I had been up decorating since 4:30 am and I wanted to share my success).


Exhibit A – Looking good, right! Well … let this be a lesson to you!

Don’t share the things you take pride in, until you complete your housekeeping tasks.I am pretty sure that some great historical leader of our country shared this with us previously and we should all know by now that  ‘those who ignore history are destined to repeat it’.

The door to my car swung shut with my keys inside and, trust me, the events that followed when my hubby came home do not fall into the 30 minute sitcom  guidelines. For some reason, unbeknownst to me, he did not see the humor in the situation!


Exhibit B

Pop-A-Lock and $40.00 later – still no sitcom humor in site – my car door was unlocked.

Exhibit B and lesson learned – Sitcoms are not real life along with that whole ‘the best laid plans of mice and men……….’ quote.


Laundry Room Redecorating

I don’t know about you, but doing laundry is probably one of my least favorite things to do. Actually, that is not entirely true since there are several steps involved in ‘doing laundry’. Step one: putting the clothes into the washer and pouring in the detergent and bleach is not a problem for me. As a matter of fact, I love it when the smell of bleach lingers in each room giving the illusion of a freshly cleaned house. Image

But, that is as far as it goes! Steps two, three, four, etc. up to folding the clothes and putting them all away only to be worn and washed again are just not enjoyable for me. I can’t even say that I get a sense of accomplishment when my laundry basket is finally emptied.Image

Why is it that most laundry rooms don’t have windows? Wouldn’t sorting, washing, drying, ironing, and folding be just a bit more enjoyable if there was a glow of natural lighting filtering through some sheer curtains? Instead, I am left with two options – avoiding my responsibilities by exiting through the garage door or entering the kitchen to deal with other issues (that is a topic for another post).Image

Okay, so if I can’t have natural lighting I am thinking that a unique light fixture (like a small chandelier) might be just the thing to place in the dungeon – a.k.a. laundry room……Image

In the meantime, I did a little decorating in there to lighten the tone…