Archive for August, 2010


August 16, 2010

Junk-O-Rama was a fun sale last Saturday, hosted by the ever-charming Todd Waddell, owner of Bountiful Home in Edmonds.

Sunny weather and nice people were in attendance.

Terrific things in enticing vignettes were there.

A special treat was meeting Sandra and Todd of Pink Marmalade, and ogling their swell hand-painted signs.

It was a dandy way to spend a Saturday morning!


Goodwill Goodness

August 13, 2010

My shopping spree at the Goodwill Outlet near my house came to a whopping total of $3.25! 

There was a brokers’ open house at our home, so I had to skedaddle somewhere.  First stop was getting an oil change for my car.  A responsible errand.  And a chance to start reading the latest issue of Where Women Create.  I realized the Goodwill Outlet was darn close to the car place.  Next thing I knew, I was digging through the bins of clothing.  The black print skirt fits like a dream, and has some stretch to it too.  I’m collecting cream colored wool sweaters to felt (shrink) and fashion into a patchwork throw blanket.  It was even an extra-large size.  And my score of the day – the Free People white skirt with the drapey ruffles.  I’ll cut off the waist band for another something, and dye this charcoal grey.

This kind of shopping is my idea of big fun!

Making More Hydrangeas

August 12, 2010

This is a great time of the growing year to take cuttings of your hydrangeas to propagate.  When my thoughtful friend, Melody, emailed me with her offer to do just that, I said yes please as quickly as I could.  Mornings are the best time.  She showed me how to bend the stems to find the best candidates.  You want a quick snap.  If the stem bends and bends, it is not ready.  If it doesn’t want to snap easily, it is too old.

Cut the blossom off leaving about 1/2″ of stem above the first set of leaves.

It will look like this.  Maybe it’s closer to 1/4″ of stem left above the leaves.  The bottom set of leaves will be removed right before planting.

Melody sprayed the cuttings with a little bit of water to keep them happy on the  drive back to her home.  She is such a fantastic friend that she is even going to watch over these future gems at her house through the winter!

The beginnings of our future garden.

The next step will be to take a sharp razor blade and cut the stems right above that bottom set of leaves.  The stems will be rolled in a rooting hormone and planted in perlite with peat moss.  Melody even has some sort of covered tray to act as a tiny greenhouse.

I am so touched by all of Melody’s thoughtful efforts.  As a fellow gardener, she knows how sentimentally attached I am to these special shrubs.  To have parts of them grow in our future garden will bring us garden joy galore.


August 11, 2010

My son Carlos and his daughter, Claire.  Watching him be a loving dad is one of my great joys.

You Know You’re a Hoarder When…

August 10, 2010

This is a classic hoarding habit of mine.  Every day I try to find some thing to leave our house.  I pulled these two pots out of a kitchen cupboard. 


When our boys were little, I went through a gourmet cooking stage to express my creativity while keeping them alive.  I would save up and go to Sur La Table, back in the day when there was just the original shop at the Pike Place Market in Seattle.  I do remember these pans were not cheap.  They are plated in beautiful tin, made in France and have charming handles.

So I sent this picture to my friend bj, a long time foodie, asking what are these pans?  She knew right away that they were Charlotte molds, used for a dessert with lady fingers around the edges and filled with goodness. 

Even though I am not itching to make any Charlottes in the near future, I am going to hold onto these pans and use them some how.  Maybe to organize something.  

I’m okay with this de-cluttering backslide.  I’ve learned there’s not a whole lot of logic involved in holding onto certain things.  But I’m ready to open another cupboard, and see what can move on to a new home.

Fresh Home Magazine

August 9, 2010

The current, summer issue of Fresh Home Magazine features a Bicycle Wheel Organizer I created for The Salvage Studio – Sustainable Home Comforts to Organize, Entertain, and Inspire.  A book I co-authored with Lisa Hilderbrand and Amy Duncan, my former partners of Salvage Studio.  We’ve all moved onto new endeavors, so please check out their blogs to see what they are doing these days.

It’s always great when the book continues to receive some nice recognition.  Thanks Amy for discovering the generous mention in Fresh Home.  And a huge thank you to Fresh Home Magazine for spreading the word about our book.

Photographer In Our Bathtub

August 6, 2010

My good friend, Julie Sotomura, is an extraordinary professional photographer.  One of her specialties is pet portraits, and obviously she will do whatever it takes to get an incredible shot!  We recently received sad health news about our beloved kitty, Harry.  As a most thoughtful and compassionate gift, Julie offered to take Harry’s picture.  And wouldn’t you know it, Harry recently decided his favorite place to nap is in our bathtub.

Here’s some action shots of the two of them.

Hank, Harry’s brother, showed up to see what was going on.  He declined an invitation to join them.

Now for Julie’s terrific photos of Handsome Harry.

Please visit Julie’s website, Photomura, to find out more about this talented woman.  We are doing another exciting project together, which I’ll share more about one day soon.  Julie created my blog banner, and took the captivating banner picture of what rests on our piano.  She is an absolute dream to work with.  Julie is smart, artistic, intuitive and truly listens.

And Harry loves her too.

Garage Progress Report

August 5, 2010

To the untrained eye, this might look like an average garage.  Room for two cars and some stuff in the extra spot.  Well for too many years, this is what it looked like:

Two years ago, I started my de-cluttering journey.  It was huge when one car could park inside.  Eventually both our cars fit.  There were some backslides along the way.  I look at this mess, and it seems like it was a lifetime ago.

Now there is an amazing new development:

Bare surfaces!

Ruffles and Rust Show

August 4, 2010

Please mark your calendars for October 22 and 23, 2010 for a wonderful new show organized by the fabulous Timi of Come Junk With Us fame.  I am thrilled to be teaching two jewelry classes on Saturday as part of this show.

The venue is the Monroe Fair Grounds – in a great space with plenty of parking.  Friday evening is early shopping and a Bloggers/Facebook Fan Ball.  Saturday is more shopping with classes also offered by the talented Tiffany Kirchner-Dixon of The Fancy Farm Girl.

Please check back for more details as they are available!

A Little Paint in the Garden

August 3, 2010

A few weeks ago, two of our favorite gardening friends, Sue and John, had an open garden day.  They invited friends to drop by for a visit, enjoy some refreshments, and best of all – spend time wandering and admiring their inspirational garden.  There were lots and lots of happy highlights and ideas!  One of my favorites was Sue had spray painted some super-sized allium dried blossoms, and arranged them in this pot.  The effect created a whimsical surprise, and added a punch of color.  My idea of garden fun!