Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Waterfalls To Watery Eyes Hodgepodge

After taking a break from the Hodgepodge last week, it is good to be back among my Wednesday fellow bloggers.  So, come join us for

1. What are two or three expectations you have of yourself?

Realistic expectations?
1.  Consciously or unconsciously, I have always put a good bit of pressure on myself to "be above."  I don't mean better-than, but to just be the best I can be.  I have not often felt I succeeded, but the need/desire/drive is always there.  I'm pretty sure my mother instilled this in us.
2.  To be the wife and mother, grandmother that God desires me to be.  Again, I have not felt very successful at this.
3.  To keep the laundry done, food on the table once in a while and the house presentable.  No pressure there!

2. In what way does your outdoor space need sprucing up this spring?

Hubby and I did a bit of sprucing up outside this past Saturday.  The main things left to do are to plant annuals in the front flower beds and add pot plants to the patio.  I will not be doing quite as much this spring and summer as I did last year.

3. According to this site (Roadtrippers), six of North America's most wondrous waterfalls are-Webster's Falls in Ontario, Upper Whitewater Falls in North Carolina, Havasu Falls in the Grand Canyon, Multnomah Falls in Oregon, The Lower Yellowstone Falls, and Niagara.  Have you seen any on the list? Which one on the list would you most like to visit? Prettiest waterfall not on the list that you've seen in person?

We saw the Upper Whitewater Falls in North Carolina many years ago; Have been to the Grand Canyon but did not see a waterfall.  We have seen Niagara and it is truly magnificent.  But, I think one of the prettiest and most majestic was in the Valdez, Alaska National Park.

4. Looking back, what's something you wish you'd done as a teenager?

Been a better student.  Been nicer and more obedient to my parents.  Not taken life so for granted.

5. Ham...yes please or no thank you? If you said yes please which of the following do you like best-baked ham with all the trimmings, a ham and cheese sandwich, prosciutto with melon, a ham biscuit, a bowl of split pea and ham soup, or a slice of pizza topped with ham and pineapple?

Yes, baked ham with all the trimmings, please!

6. Are you typical of your generation? How so?

Yes, I think I am.  We who were born in the early to mid 1940's are between the Great Generation and the Baby Boomers.  We are fiercely patriotic and loyal to our country.  We are also very realistic.  We are practical and hard workers.  We have strong family ties and committed to relationships.  We tend to be more religious and strong in our faith.  We are also a dying breed!

7. April rolls in at the end of the week, and in keeping with that theme...'act the fool', 'nobody's fool' 'a fool's errand', 'could have fooled me'...which foolish idiom most recently applies to you?

Probably "act the fool" will apply to me.  On Thursday, my middle sister and I will join our youngest sister to babysit these adorable twin granddaughters of hers.  I feel sure there will be a lot of acting the fool between the three of us.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Spring has sprung out all over the place here in northwest Louisiana.  The azaleas in our yard have been spectacular this week.
 Since they are short lived, I wanted to enjoy them inside as well.
 As a result, I was awakened at 4:15 this morning with an allergy attack - sneezing my head off, swollen and watery eyes.  Yes, the affects of too much pollen, I'm thinking.  So, they may be best enjoyed from afar.

If you haven't seen the conclusion of my "Love Your Home" series, you may enjoy seeing the final post as I featured our home.  OUR HOUSE

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Love Your Home Finale - My House

I think it is time to end the "Love Your Home" Series at this time.  Spring is a crazy, busy time and I just don't seem to find the time to devote to it the way I like.  I may feature more houses in the future, but for the time being, this will be the finale.

 That being said, I will close it with a reveal of my own home.

While the architecture and decor of the houses I will be featuring may vary, what they all have in common is an interesting story to share because it is the story of the people who call it home.

My Eclectic Home 

Nine years ago, Hubby and I decided to downsize and move to another part of town.  God gave us the perfect house and we have loved living in this gated community every single day.

 This was a new "speck" house when we found it.  It is in the Garden Home section of what at that time was a new gated subdivision.  Our best friends were building a home in the "big house" section of the community.  Our house is a modest 2,000 sq ft, but plenty of space for us.

This is what it looked like in 2007.
 I love the night time view.
 So ya'll come inside and make yourself at home.
The only wall color I changed was the foyer.  I felt the red set the theme for touches that can be found in every room.  Besides, it makes me happy.
 I love playing with decor for this narrow foyer table.  For spring I added some of my white pottery pieces and one of my prized pitchers.
On the bottom are some of my favorite pieces of crystal.
The salad bowl and tray on the left were wedding gifts of my mother's.  The two matching pieces in the center were gifts from a very special friend many years ago.  The gorgeous tall vase held a massive birthday floral arrangement from my son when he was in college.  The other lead crystal bowl is an heirloom piece I treasure.

Now come have a seat and we'll visit a spell.
  We have a very open floor plan, and it is one of the things I loved about this house.
We added the plantation shutters throughout except for the Master Bedroom.
 We elected to not put our TV in this room.  I just didn't want it to be the focal point of the room.  Besides, once I found this picture, I couldn't imagine anything else being above the mantel.
 I enjoy changing out the decor on the mantel a couple times a year.  I did this arrangement before spring and Hubby and I still enjoy it, so it will remain for a while.

This is the last remaining demitasse cup and saucer from a favorite aunt.  She gave them to me while I was still in high school many, many years ago.  The books are some from my dad's family dating back to the mid 1800's.
 This grouping contains a treasured piece from Italy, signed by the Italian artisan, Marli.  It was given to us by a very dear friend years ago.  She also gave me the antique porcelain pitcher.  It is Crown Ducal Ware from England.
 I love the details of this piece.
 On the left side of the mantel I put a metal plant urn that I thought added architectural interest.
 The books are old music hymnals also part of the collection from my dad's family.  The picture is by Luigi Schiavonetti (April 1, 1765 – June 7, 1810), an Italian reproductive engraver and etcher, entitled, "The Mask." #57.  I have no idea of its value, but it is invaluable to me.
 These Martha Washington chairs were part of an uncle's estate that my mother inherited.  I had them reupholstered ages ago as evidenced by the out-of-date flame-stitched fabric.  The colors in this fabric are the inspiration for the color scheme throughout the house.  Since I haven't found another fabric that makes me as happy as this, they remain unchanged.
The vase was purchased while on a trip to Greece in the mid 70's.  The two books here are our guest book and family picture book that I compiled for our 50th Anniversary last year.  I just like seeing them. 
This wall behind the chairs is a composition of mirrors, which I enjoy using in decorating, especially to expand small spaces.  The sconces are holding cups and saucers recently given to me by a dear friend who sold the tea room she had owned and operated for 25 years.  You can find her story HERE and HERE.
One of the few items I purchased when we bought this house was this secretary that goes with our bedroom furniture.  It fit perfectly in this little niche and holds more of our favorite items.
A compromise we made in having a fourth bedroom was less dining space.  However, we felt it was worth it.  We may regret it when we get ready to sell, but it works for us.
The table is set for a Good Friday evening dinner with friends.
 I chose to use china with a delicate floral pattern, gold flatware and stemware that was a wedding gift 50 years ago.
 I moved the tall centerpiece to a side table and replaced it with one that is more conducive for conversation.  The azaleas are in full bloom right now, and I love using them inside.
 I even added one to the napkin ring.
I did this painting that hangs in the dining area last year.  It incorporates all the colors I'm using in the house, and it makes a good conversation piece.The kitchen is one of our favorite rooms in the house.  It is spacious and well organized.
 The elevated dishwasher is one of the features that sold me on this house.  I wonder why all builders don't do this.
With plenty of counter space, I can designate special spaces such as the cookbook,
 and beverage stations.
Another of our favorite rooms is our 4th bedroom converted office/library/den.  It is in here that we spend most of our time and have our computer and mounted big-screen TV.  And yes, those chairs are as comfortable as they look.
 Being Sunday School teachers, we needed space for our books and commentaries.
They have even spilled out into the hall.
This old pie safe had belonged to Hubby's mother.  We rescued it from an old building right after our wedding.  It has seen many transformations through the years.
When we found it, it was painted silver with rusted screens in the doors.  It was hinged on the sides so it could be folded for moving easily from one place to another.  We replaced the screens with glass and when we moved here, I painted it my favorite color.  Don't you just love it?  The painting above was done by a friend.

The next-door bedroom contains three antiques that are special to us.
 One day back in the early 90's I got a call from a dear little man in our church who was having to close up his house and move to be nearer family.  He told us to come over that he had a few things for us.  Among those things was this cute little English chest and the coffee table.
 We loved Mr. Henry and having these pieces that were special to him is priceless.
 Another piece that is special is this dresser that we found in a little antique shop in our former town.  We needed something to go in our college son's bedroom.  Little did I know it would become one of our favorite pieces of furniture.  I found in one of the little drawers a receipt for a raincoat dated 4-5-1946 from Hepworth & Son, established in 1864 and located in Leeds, Great Britain.  I understand there are now almost 600 stores across GB.  Yes, the receipt is still in that little drawer.

The painting was given to us over 40 years ago and done by a lady in our church.  It dates back to the 50's.  I have other small watercolors of hers in the guest bath.  They are very dear.
The 3rd bedroom also contains a story.

This dresser was given to me by a little Cajun lady in South Louisiana, who spoke very broken English.  She lived in a little shot-gun house full of antiques.  I mowed her lawn during my junior year of high school and as payment, she gave me a choice of three pieces.  I couldn't believe it!  I chose this piece because of the beautiful Italian marble.
The Master is our retreat.  The walls are a soft olive green.
A few weeks ago I created this little grouping and tied it together with one of my paintings.
As you can tell, I do not use a lot of patterns in my house, but my bedroom contains patterns and textures that I especially enjoy.
 Just off our bedroom is the sunroom.  I chose to paint it the same color as the bedroom as an extension of that space.  It is another of my favorite places to live and my orchids like it as well.
 It also serves as my painting studio.
There is absolutely nothing fancy about our home, but it is home and full of love.