Thursday, April 26, 2012

Abby is Seven Months Old!

Grandkids are so much fun!  Abby is now 7 months old.  She is growing quickly and is getting more social.  She is also at the age where she fears new people.  Last Sunday she was afraid of me, it broke my heart when her little lip jutted out and she started to cry.  We are loving her so much and looking forward to grandbaby #4 coming in June.  Happy Birthday Abby!

Be Careful What You Wish For!

Well here it is.  Lately I've said a couple times that I wish I could have a new car.  My car was really Aaron's car and when he went to Iraq, he asked us if we would buy it, so he could not have a car payment.  Well it is a nice car, a 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix.  It runs well and has great power.  Only problem is, it was not a me car.  It didn't suit my personality.  Aaron said it really did, don't know what he sees in my personality that I don't see but, anyway, this morning as Stuart was driving to work, only about 3/4 mile from our house, he had a little wreck.  I don't know the whole story, but he got a ticket and we are now down to one car.  We should be able to rent a car.  I don't know if it will be totalled or not, but is in the shop right now. 

The most important thing is that no one was hurt in this accident.  We may be getting a new car.  Be careful what you wish for.  I don't think I'll get my "ME" car this time either. 

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Things I've Been Working On!

I had gone to the thrift store two different times and seen this lamp.  I really liked it, but it had problems.  I forgot to take a before picture so I will attempt to describe how it looked.  First it had a very big shade that looked like a chinese peasant's hat.  Then the color of the lamp base was a cement  putty color and had been dry brushed with a little green and gold.  The color was very subtle.  Also it had many chips in the plaster all over on it's pointy edges.  But I loved it.  I thought about that lamp and thought about it and finally on my way home from work I went back and decided if it was still there, I would buy it.  Well it was still there and so for $12.95 I bought it.  I also purchased this shade for $3.00 and donated the chinese hat back to the thrift store. Well when I got home I got some LOOKS from my husband, but I took that big, (and I mean big) lamp to the garage and got out the oil rubbed bronze spray paint and gave it a good coat.  The beautiful finial that came on this lamp has gotten lost, so we got a replacement tonight at Home Depot. 

 Today was my day off and I went in search of some Rub-n-Buff.  I had read alot about this in blogland and wanted to try it.  I wanted to create some definition to the fruit and the basket and not have them disappear into the dark.  I got it at Hobby Lobby and it was wonderful.  I put some on with my finger, but then used a cheap brush to get a better coat and do it quickly as this stuff dries fast. I love the lamp's new look!   Stuart got a photo of me with the spray can, while I was working on the mirror you see below.

I got this mirror a while back when I was doing stuff for Abby's nursery.  We didn't use it and so I am going to refurbish it and take it to Texas for our house there.  I gave it a coat of white paint and then brushed it with some dark stain.  I'll post a photo of it in the next few days and let you see how it looks. It is not quite right yet. 

I have some plans for a few other things in the near future that involve some drop cloths, some green paint and some dark walnut stain and a sander.  I also bought some paste wax to give it a try on the dining table and chest of drawers that we have in our Texas house.

This should keep me busy for a while.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

All the little signs of Spring

Late last week I noticed that the apple tree was in full, glorious bloom. We had never pruned it and so it had lots of crossed and recrossed branches. So I got the loppers out and off I went. I decided not to waste the beauties and so made a sweet bouquet. They smelled just like apples.
The peach tree is also blooming and also my lilacs, the few little tulips, daffodils, and the grape hyacinths. The roses are leafing out, the lily of the valley is coming up and soon the snowball bush will be blooming also. I love Spring!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Homemade Laundry Soap

While reading my "Country Sampler" magazine recently I came upon this recipe for homemade laundry soap. I thought it would be fun to try to make and so I went for the ingredients. I bought everything at Wal-Mart and they were quite inexpensive. All were found in the laundry aisle. I put off making it for a while but yesterday, I noticed that I was getting low on Tide. So I decided to give it a go. It was so easy and smells nice too.
Here is the recipe:
2 bars Fels-Naptha soap, grated coarsly
2 cups Arm and Hammer washing soda
2 cups 20 Mule Team Borax
Grate the soap and dissolve it in 4 quarts of boiling water. I mixed mine in a 5 gallon bucket. Then when it is dissolved, add 5 quarts of hot water and 2 cups of soda and 2 cups of borax. Mix thoroughly, then add the remaining 3 quarts of water. Mix well and let sit overnight. It will make a thick gell. The next day, scoop out enough of it to fill a large mixing bowl and whip with an electric mixer until smooth. Pour into 12-1 quart jars. When ready to use, pour a jar of soap into your liquid laundry detergent bottle that you have so carefully recycled or been given by one of your truly good friends. Add 2 jars of water, shake well and use the regular quantity as directed by the commercial soap maker. You can use in high effeciency washers too, just use a little less.
This was easy and did not take much time. I had thought I would mix the gel with my husband's drill with a paint stirrer attached, but couldn't find the long one, so used my portable kitchen mixer.
This is what it looks like in the bucket all gelled up. I will post later after using it, how I like it. I sure smells nice and is so much cheaper. $5.00 for this batch and $29.00 for a box of Tide.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Trash to Treasure

For a long time I have been wanting a kitchen island. I looked up how to build one, online, we had been pricing cabinets, looking for used cabinets and never had gotten around to building it. Well one day, I was at my favorite thrift store and lo and behold there it was. A kitchen island just sitting there waiting for me. It was a little wobbly and needs a paint job. The price was right at only $14.99. I grabbed it and brought it home. Jan helped me reinforce the base and add some casters. He also added some trim to hide the reinforced base. I need to paint it. It is great. I have all my kitchen ware that was housed in the garage in it, the knives in the drawer and my pretty le cruset dutch oven on the shelf. It has towel racks and also butcher block top. It is just the right size. Good things come to those who wait.
Thanks Honey for your help!

Owen is in great shape!

Owen recently won a competetion with his Army group that was quite strenous. He will probably laugh and deride me about this post, but I am very proud of him and his accomplishments in the army.
In the competetion they had to lift a 40 lb bag of sand and squat with it and then raise it above their heads and whoever could do the most repetitions of this in one minute wins. He won, by doing 43 repetitions.
His doctor told him that he is in great shape with good blood pressure and cholesterol. Way to go Owen!

Monday, April 9, 2012

What Have We All Been Doing?

Well, I haven't posted anything in about 2 1/2 months and needless to say we have been a little busy around here. Stuart came home on February 9th, from his mission in Switzerland. We had a houseful of company for the blessed event and many celebrations for him. He gave an awesome talk after coming home about his experiences there and his testimony has really grown.
In February we also had the Blue and Gold Banquet for Scouting. Nolan was a Cub Scout at that time and was very excited for that. The banquet got a little postponed by a bad snowstorm, so Stuart got to be here for it and he received his Webelo and his Arrow of Light awards. We are proud of him. Now there are five arrows on each of our boys photos in the family room.
In March we had the Pinewood Derby. This was Nolan's last race and also Jan's last derby car to help his son build. That makes 16 Pinewood Derby cars that Jan has built over the years, not counting his own. I don't even know if they did that back when he was a Cub Scout. I'll have to ask him. Anyway, Jan was ecstatic about not having to make any more of them, but he gave it his all and built another winner with his son. Nolan won first place with the directions that our old friend, George Hampton, told us about many years ago. They built another modified wedge shaped vehicle and packed the weights in the back and off it went, speeding to Cub Scout Glory.
At the end of March we had Spring Break but my dad's cousin, Sam Little passed away about a week before and my mother went to Montana to clear our his belongings and tend to his final affairs, as he had no closer relatives than three cousins who are all in their 80's. Stuart and Jan went with her and it took them a good solid eight days to get it done. There was some furniture and other things that we wanted to bring back, and it wouldn't fit in the car, so I and Nolan drove up on a Saturday and loaded it up and then we all drove home the next day, Sunday. We were quite tired when we got in, so took a day to rest (except poor Jan, who had to go to work that morning) and then on Tuesday we drove to Texas and unloaded the things we brought back from Montana. We had some family heirlooms that will be dispersed to the appropriate relatives and I was able to receive a new (very old) dining room table. It has eight 10" leaves and will be 125 inches long when all are in. It will make a great family dinner table. There was also a nice chest of drawers. Both of these will need some refinishing work and I hope to post photos of that as it gets done.
In the middle of all of these events, we have been doing the daily stuff, like family dinners on Sunday, working, watching the grandkids, going to school, looking for jobs (Stuart) and enjoying the beautiful spring that we have been having.
Owen enjoyed a short trip to New Orleans with some of his Army friends this last weekend. Here are some of the pictures of the fun that he had while there.
School will be out soon, We had Nolan's birthday this last Thursday, He is a ripe old 11 years now. He had his bridging ceremony to cross over into Boy Scouts and will attend his 1st meeting on Wednesday.
Our lives are just like a river and keep rolling along. Easter was upon us, and we enjoyed a very nice family day, worshiping our Savior and being together.