Sunday, July 29, 2018

After the After

My house after a few switch-a-roos.”

A few weeks ago, I posted my major Before and After changes in my house.   If you missed it, click HERE

A few of those changes have now been adjusted to

"After the After!"

If you recall, I had put the sofa table on this short wall just inside the back and side entry only as a temporary fill-in.  We no longer wanted it behind the sofa and it was a bit dated.

We decided to take the table to a nice local consignment store instead of just keeping it until I found something else.  So off it went.

With a now empty space, my co-decorator husband had a great idea to move the foyer table to this wall.



We liked it enough to leave it, so that led to other changes.

With the taller table, the mirror needed to be raised.  The ceilings are 12' so raising it filled in this space well. 

I also added a couple taller pieces to the table as well.

The metal urn was moved from above a cabinet in the sun room.  It compliments the metal vase and I like the way it repeats the colors in the greenery of the arrangement.

The porcelain ducks were a gift from one of my "adopted" sons many, many years ago, and still holds a special place in my heart.

I'm not real happy with this arrangement, but I just don't have any place to store my mother's small punch bowl and this heirloom lead crystal bowl.  Besides, I like to see them, so they will live here for now.

I'm not sure this is the last and final piece of furniture on this wall, but it does relieve the pressure to find something before I actually find the "right" thing.

We were never happy with this low curio cabinet on this wall.  It blocked our pathway to the hall and it just never felt right.

So, we moved it to fill the empty spot in the foyer.

It now holds some of the crystal pieces that were on the bottom of the other table as well as some of my white pottery pitchers.  The small crystal dish on top holds our front door keys.

It seems to be somewhat happy here, but I'm still not sure this is the final piece for this entry either, but it works for now.  There may be another switch-a-roo in the future.  Who knows.

And, this is where I put the new painting I did.

I absolutely love these colors in the entry way.

While at HomeGoods the other day, I found this gorgeous vase and it cried to come home with me.  Never one to upset a beautiful piece of glassware, it found a home right here.

The sun shining through the front door brings out so many lovely hues in this pretty addition to my entry way.

So, that's my 

"After the After!"

What do you think?

Linking to
Amaze Me Monday
Inspire Me Tuesday

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Saturday 9 - Love Is All Around

Where were you in 1970?

I was trying to figure out how to be a mother to this adorable, rambunctious one year old while anticipating the birth of his little sister.  It was a busy but wonder-filled time in our lives.

Saturday 9: Love Is All Around (1970)

Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

1) This week's song is the theme from The Mary Tyler Moore Show, a sitcom that originally aired from 1970 to 1977. Were you a fan?

Yes, I watched it some when I had time in the evenings.  That was a busy period of time.  I mostly remember them as reruns.

2) The song tells us that Mary Richards can turn the world on with her smile. Yet the real-life Mary Tyler Moore said she was uncomfortable with her "wide mouth." If you could improve on one of your facial features, which would you choose? 

My nose.  But it really isn't something I'd ever want to change.  It is me.

3) We also hear that Mary can "take a nothing day and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile." What do you think makes a day "a nothing day?"

I suppose it would be one where there was nothing planned and nothing to look forward to. 

4) Mary works in the newsroom at WJM. Her desk is neat as a pin. Are you neat? Or do you lean to the sloppy side?

I can't abide clutter, so my house (except for this desk at the moment) is usually neat as a pin.

5) Mary's best friend, Rhoda, worked as a window dresser at Hempel's department store. What department store did you most recently shop at? What did you buy?

The last time I was in a department was months ago.  It was Dillards and I bought a pair of shoes.

6) Mary Richards lived in Minneapolis. What city is nearest to where you are right now?

I live in Shreveport, the 4th largest city in my state of Louisiana; however, the largest city near me would be Dallas, Texas.

7) Originally the part of Mary Richards was written as a divorcee, but in 1970, there were no TV shows that centered around a divorced woman. Think about the women in your life. Are most of them married, divorced, single or widowed?

Most are married, but sadly, there are more and more of my friends who have become widows in the last year or so.  That's what happens when you and your friends were born in the early 40's.

8) The MTM production company logo featured a mewing kitten. The cat was found in a Minneapolis shelter, and, after her sequence was shot, she was adopted by a crew member who named her Mimsie. What's the name of the last cat -- or dog or hamster or rabbit -- that you petted?

As I don't have a pet, the last one I petted would be my sister's cat, Ellie.  This is that beautiful, spoiled baby.

Image may contain: cat

9) Random question -- Would you rather have a job that kept you seated on your fanny or standing on your feet?

I DON'T WANT A JOB!!  I am loving retirement too much to even want to pretend.  But, since my back won't let me stand for very long in one place, my pretend job would have to be sitting on my fanny. 

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Wellness Wednesdays # 1

Welcome to my inaugural post for the Wellness Wednesdays series.

There are many ways to be well in body and mind and each week, we will focus on some of them.

I was asked if others could join this and make it a party of Wellness Wednesdays posts.  I think that would be a great idea and I invite you to join up.  The only thing I ask is that you add a link to my blog.

There is so much we can learn from each other and this is a great way to share what's important to each of us, so YES, grab my link and let's go.

Feeding the Mind

I recently saw this on Instagram and thought how true this statement is.

Are you like me and sometimes get caught up in the number of candles on our cake instead of what we can do to make each day count?

God counted our days before we were born, but what our mind thinks can determine how our days will be spent.

Romans 8:6 tells us, "For the mind-set of the flesh is death, but the mind-set of the Spirit is life and peace."

I choose life and peace.  How about you?

 Every day we can choose to take a deep breath and "recycle ourselves" knowing that we are a new creation in Jesus Christ.

2 Corinthians 5:17-20  -  The Message

"Because of this decision we don’t evaluate people by what they have or how they look. We looked at the Messiah that way once and got it all wrong, as you know. We certainly don’t look at him that way anymore. Now we look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it! All this comes from the God who settled the relationship between us and him, and then called us to settle our relationships with each other....We’re speaking for Christ himself now: Become friends with God; he’s already a friend with you."

Ways to Keep Fit

My birthdays may say that I'm aging, but I can't let my body hear that.

Because I am dealing with spinal stenosis, a lower back and neck fusion, and Mr. Arthur, I can't stop moving this body.  So, maintaining an exercise routine is crucial for me.

I will give you my workout routine as we go along but I thought I would begin at the beginning.  How I wake up!

Before I get out of bed, I go through a series of stretches.  Dick took these pictures at the gym to give you an idea of what I do.  This was so much better than what I would look like in the bed.

 First, pull knees as tight to chest as possible and rotate ankles in both directions.

Next, cross one leg over the other and pull tight toward chest, then twist to the opposite side of the top leg.  Hold a few seconds. Switch legs and rotate as far as possible to other side.

Begin with legs in table-top position, then twist to each side while maintaining a very tight core.  I do 20 reps.

This position is called "Dead Bug" and you can see why.  With one leg bent tight against chest, stretch the other then lower as far as possible then switch legs.  This is so good for opening the hips and stretching the lower back.  I only do 10 of these before sitting up.

Last, I sit on the side of the bed and do this over head stretch and ask God to direct my day.

It only takes a couple minutes and so worth it.  Dick is also doing his own stretching during this time, then we get up and make up the bed before heading to the gym.

How do you wake up your body?

Loving your Home

"While the architecture and decor of a house may vary, what all have in common is the individual story of the people who call it home."
I added something new to our home this past weekend.  I'll talk more about some other changes later, but for this post I want to show my new painting.

I love all the beautiful colors and had so much fun creating.  I hope it says "Welcome" to all who enter our home.
I think this is enough for #1.

The following are additional topics I will be covering on Wellness Wednesdays.

Healthy Eating & Recipes

 Dressing the Body

Special Guests

Thank you for joining our Wellness Wednesday's.

Linking up with
Sharing A Journey

Monday, July 23, 2018

What's Coming on Wednesdays

I have been trying to decide what I want to do to replace the Wednesday Hodgepodge posts that I have participated in for several years.

Yes, our faithful leader of that meme has decided she needs some time to do something else, and I find no fault in that decision at all.  In fact, I applaud her for taking that step.

So, what to do!

Several themes seemed interesting to me such as "Wordless Wednesday" where you only post pictures and no words.  That really seemed appealing and has been a theme around for several years.  The only problem is I like to use words sometimes.

Then there was the idea of  "Wednesday Weighin" where I would weigh in on the topic of the day.  That was a possibility until I realized that so many of the topics I don't care about.

Then, I thought about a "Wellness Wednesday" blog post where I would share some of my favorite tips on keeping the mind and body healthy.  That seems to fit my overall blog title, "Beauty Without Within" well and something maybe you would be interested in reading.  I will also be asking my readers, all 2 of you, to share your wellness tips as well.

I will be featuring pictures and ideas gleaned from various blog posts to include in this series along with links to the blogs.

So, here's a preview of what I have in mind.  I will rotate through the following topics each week and not try to bombard you with all of them at once.

Ways to Keep Fit

I may show you some of my own routine at times as well as suggestions, but mostly offer encouragement to do what is best for you.

Healthy Eating & Recipes

This will consist of ideas and things we have tried as well as things I learn from others.

Feeding the Mind

We will explore many ways to feed the mind and soul in this segment.

Dressing the Body

We will talk fashion, what's in style, and what outfits I and others have put together, but will also talk about good skin care and what it takes to completely dress well from head to toe. It will be fun.

Loving your Home

Home is truly where our heart is and I love to see how other women express themselves in their home.  We will be looking at ways we can show our own personality where we live.

Special Guests

There are so many wonderful bloggers that we never get to visit, so I hope to tap into some of them to share with you from time to time or on a regular basis.  We won't know until it happens.

this is where I'm headed on Wednesdays for the time being.  I hope you will join me and participate in this weekly blog of

Wellness Wednesday

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Saturday 9 - Gidget

I am joining the
group this week.  Do you remember Gidget?


The Theme from Gidget 

Welcome to Saturday 9

Saturday 9: Gidget (1965)

Unfamiliar with this week's tune?   Hear it here.

1) Gidget was a sitcom that ran only one season. Have you ever seen it?

Yes, but not weekly I'm sure.  That was the year I got married, and I'm not even sure we had a TV.  Besides, we had better things to do with our evenings at home.

2) Gidget is a high school student who is more interested in surfing and boys than in the books. When you were Gidget's age, was your top priority getting good grades? Or were you more involved in the social side of student life?

Oh definitely the more social and athletic side of student life, much to my parents and teachers chagrin.

3) Gidget's father was nearly always unflappable when it came to his daughter's high-spirited shenanigans. Who is the coolest, calmest person you know?

That would be my Daughter-in-love.  She is the most laid back and easy going mother I know.  She is not bound by a clock or schedule, which drives me crazy, but it works for her and she definitely knows how to enjoy her family and friends.

4) Gidget spends as much time as she can at the beach, hanging out with her best friend Larue. Fair-skinned Larue doesn't share Gidget's passion for surfing and prefers to stay on the beach blanket, wearing a floppy hat that protects her from the sun. Are you a sun worshipper? Or, like Larue, are you careful about your exposure to the sun?

At that age, I was a very devoted sun worshipper and had the beautiful olive tan to prove it.  And sunscreen had not been invented.  In fact, we lathered on baby oil to help speed up the tanning process.  Today, I have the aging spots to show for it.

5) Gidget, the quintessential California girl, was created by Freidrich Kohner, an Austrian-born screenwriter. Can you think of another Austrian import?

Arnold Schwarzenegger is the only actor I know other than Hedi Lamur who was a very well-known actress from my parent's day.  Director Otto Preminger I think was Austrian.  I am also reading a book written by an Austrian Jewish woman who survived the Holocaust.  She never actually became a U.S. citizen, but I would still call her a very brave and heroic import.

6) Howard Greenfield and Jack Keller wrote this week's Gidget theme. They also wrote the 1960 hit song, "Everybody's Somebody's Fool." When is the last time you felt foolish?

After I've done or said something that wasn't appropriate or necessary at the moment.  The Lord has a way of reminding me I don't want to become a contentious old woman.

7) This is the show that introduced Sally Field. She went on to win two Oscars and four Emmy Awards. When you think of Sally, what role comes to mind?

Oh my, there are so many, but the first to come to mind has to be her role in "Steel Magnolia," which took place only an hour from where I live.  And then, there is "Mrs. Doubtfire" and "Forrest Gump."  But perhaps the one I most remember is the movie "Sybil." Although it is so sad and tragic, young Sally Field mastered her role in this movie and totally drew me into her character. 

8) Today Gidget is a grandmother. Sally reports that her grandchildren especially enjoy "sleepovers at Granny's." Where were you the last time you spent the night away from home? 

It would be my recent 2-night visit with my sisters at the home of the middle Sis.  We always enjoy our time together and this visit had fun trying to get a good picture of ourselves.  This was the best we could do.

- Describe your perfect lazy afternoon. 

Lately, most of my afternoons are lazy.  I enjoy either sitting in the sunroom or on the screened-in back porch with a cup of Chia tea and my ipad with either games or a good book or both.  But, perhaps the perfect one would be where its a whole lot cooler than it is here right now, and with this vista.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Emoji 'ng a Post

I missed the Hodgepodge last week, so am glad to get back today.

Click the link below to join all the other Hodgepodge bloggers in answering this week's questions.

1. I feel most energized when I _______________________.

Going to the gym in the mornings energizes me physically, but spending time with my family energizes me the most from an overall perspective.

2. Where were you ten years ago?

Right where I am today.  We had moved into our new Garden Home the year before and we were busy getting the landscaping done.  I was responsible for organizing a state-wide event for the Technical Colleges in the spring and had back surgery shortly afterward.  We also moved our son and his family to Northern Indiana in August of that year.  In retrospect, it was quite a year.

3. July 17th is World Emoji Day. Do you use emojis? Which one's your favorite? Your most used?

I do use emojis frequently in my texts.  This is my favorite.  😍
But, I also often use this one because my sisters and I enjoy being silly in our texts.  🤣
Because this is an easy way to agree with a message, I use this one.  👍
I also enjoy using my own personal Bitmojis such as this one.

4. What song would you put on a wedding DO NOT PLAY list?

The first one to come to mind is "The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas."  But quite frankly, I would think the majority of today's music should be left off that list.  Because I don't listen to current pop music, I googled and am too embarrassed to even write the titles of some.  But, there are also some "church" songs that should not be used either such as "Revive Us Again" or "Rescue the Perishing."

 5. What deserves less of your attention? More of your attention?

My iPad!
My Bible!

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

I'm personally choosing to not watch the news or think about the state of affairs, or those to whom the new term, "Trump Deranged Syndrome" applies.  I read an article recently where the writer said, smart people don't worry about all that because they don't get caught up in things they can't control.

Instead, they focus their energy on the two things that are completely in their power.  It is within their power to focus attention on all the things for which they are grateful and look for the good around them.  They also focus their effort on doing what they can to improve themselves and the world around them.  These are two simple steps we can take to make the world a better place.  Now, go out and .....

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Hot Air Balloons

Who doesn't love to see a beautiful, bright hot air balloon floating through the sky!

What is even better is to see them up close on the ground.  And, it may even be better to see them from the basket of one floating in the sky, but that's not part of my story.

Our city hosted its third annual Red River Balloon Rally this past week.  It is part of the U.S. Hot Air Balloon Championships.

This past Friday night, was the big Faith & Family night of the festival and held on one of the local college campuses.  Our church was one of the sponsors.

I will let my pictures tell their story.

Dick found a couple Duck Dynasty stars to pose with.

It truly takes a crew to get one of these huge balloons upright.  It was so fascinating to watch this whole process.

This one was tethered and only took riders up a short distance.

Before we realized what was happening, other balloons began to appear all across this large field.

I decided it was time to leave the comfort of my tent and chair and walk among these giants.

The highlight of the festival is the "Moon Glow" when all of the balloons fire at the same time.

I cannot begin to tell you how thrilling it was for me to be right in the middle of these 40 plus full firing balloons.

My pictures do not begin to do it justice.

Another spectacular scene is when they all do the "twinkle" lights where they fire at different times.  It was like being among giant fireflies.

Our church sponsored these two Star Wars balloons and they were quite the hit.

As if this was not spectacular enough, the evening ended with ten minutes of sky filling fireworks.  What a show!

We will not miss this amazing spectacle next year for sure.