Tuesday, September 13, 2011

What I've Been Reading

I forgot to post my other Study DIYs! Yikes! I'll try to get those up soon. This is another buys busy week! We have a color consultant coming tonight to give us ideas with certain areas of the house. Tomorrow, we install the new sink and faucet in the kitchen, and Thursday is craft group...in which I've been using power tools to prepare. YEsterday I got a lesson on the miter saw. Fun stuff!

While all this is going on, I figured I'd catch you all up on what I've been reading lately...

First, if you haven't yet read the Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, you need to. The first movie comes out in March! Anyone else excited about this? Seriously, I don't know a single person who has read the trilogy and not liked it. My favorite thing since Harry Potter. For me, it even tops Twilight, and I'm a pretty big fan of those books too. Ok, I'm done talking you into it...for now at least!

So what have I been reading while I wait for the movie? Here's my list from the past couple of months. Images are linked to B&N.com.


First, the Sweep series by Cate Tiernan. I've read books 1-12. I'm waiting for Volume 5 (13-15) to be released in December. Because here's the thing about these books, if you buy books at least. You can buy each book individually for around $7.99 each. OR you can buy them in 3 book volumes for $7.99. Hence the reason that I'm waiting until December for Volume 5 to come out. I was extra lucky, and got mine at Borders during their going out of business sale. The first was only 20% off I think, but I went back each week for the next. That's how fast I made it thru these.

The main character, Morgan, finds out she's a witch by blood. A Powerful one. And it turns her life into a whirlwind. A true series where each story leads into the next. These ones definitely kept me reading to find out what would happen next.



After those, I re-read The Giver by Lois Lowry. I originally read this book as part of our required reading in 8th grade. I remember liking it, but didn't remember the premise much at all. I actually stumbled across it at a garage sale this summer, like new, and totally worth my $1. I took this book on my trip to Chicago. It was a great choice for plane reading, especially since it's a fairly short trip. I don't even know how to describe this book, and so I'll let B&N do it:
"The story centers on twelve-year-old Jonas, who lives in a seemingly ideal world. Not until he is given his life assignment as the Receiver does he begin to understand the dark secrets behind this fragile community."

It's apparently the first in a trilogy, which I never know. The other 2 are Gathering Blue and The Messenger. So I guess those are now on to-read list.



And last, I just finished Shades of Milk and Honey. From B&N: "Shades of Milk and Honey is exactly what we could expect from Jane Austen if she had been a fantasy writer." The whole world of grand balls and propriety, mixed with the art of creating glamour. The whole creating glamour thing was completely new to me, and I don't fully understand it, but it really doesn't matter. The plain sister is practically a spinster. And the beautiful sister attracts every man she meets. Very typical of the stories of this era, and yet there are twists and turns that keep you guessing.

So how do these all rate for me? Just a refresher on my scale...
5 - absolute favorites
4 - loved it, would read it again
3 - an okay book, but I'm not likely to read it again
2 - didn't care for it
1 - couldn't even finish it

First, I love most everything I read, so I give a LOT of 4s. So here it goes:
The Sweep Series - 4
The Giver - 4 (Clearly, since I've already read it once. That was long ago though)
Shades of Milk & Honey - 3 Now don't get me wrong on this. I really enjoyed it. I'm just not sure that it's one I'd read again. I may however read the sequel.

And there you have it! I haven't decided what I'm reading next. It's been crazy around here, and I've been too tired at night to read before bed like I usually do. I'll be sure to let you know once I've read it though! And don't forget, if you want some more ideas, you can find me on GoodReads.

Happy reading! And as always, if you've just read your next favorite thing, leave a note. I'd love to hear about it!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Study DIYs - Collage Wall Tutorial

So I've posted the pics of the study. I hope you like it as much as we do!

This room involved multiple projects, which I will share with you the next few posts.

First up is the collage wall, because all in all, I think it's my favorite part of the room. Did you notice that it's off center? It's the first thing hubby brought up. And it was done on purpose! We don't have a desk yet, a real desk at least. As I said, we both have laptops. We'd like to get a monitor again someday, but for now, no monitor, requiring no desk. Anyway, the someday desk will go in front of the collage. Hence the off-center arrangement. It's kind of centered with the doors, so it looks okay from the foyer. It doesn't bug me one bit.

So how did I get the arrangement? Am I a lucky guesser? Heck no! New home = unblemished drywall (well for the most part anyway). I did not want to go nailing random holes in the walls. So I used a trick from Sherry @ Young House Love. The best tip ever! If you are even thinking about a gallery/collage wall, remember this! So what's the big tip? Newspaper templates. Yep. Easy and simple.

1. Trace each piece on newspaper.
2. Cut it out
3. Place it over the back, and mark where the hanger/hook is
4. Hang the template on the wall with painters tape
5. Once you've got your arrangement, nail right thru the newpaper
6. Remove newspaper, and hang your frame/item

Quick tip regarding the newspaper...if you have colored ads/flyers, use those over the regular newsprint. If you've ever wrapped stuff in newspaper for moving, or at least handled a lot of newspaper, you'll notice that the ink comes off on your hands, leaving smudges on your face, and whatever else you touch. In this case, your walls. I wasn't thinking, and had quite a few smudges. They cleaned off okay, but I will definitely be using colored newsprint, and even coated if I can find it! So if you have it, take the extra minute to dig thru your recycle bin for the ads.

I forgot the pre-picture, but I arranged all of my items on the floor. I actually had a couple more frames that I decided not to use in the final arrangement. After I had the arrangement I wanted, I made my templates, and taped them up.

I don't have a picture of just the templates, but here's a part way picture:

The only newspaper piece I've removed at this point is the one behind the Corinthians red canvas print. You can see that I've hung the other pieces right over the templates for fit, and look how well they line up!

And the final wall:

The only miss was the door knob thing. I'm not sure how, but that one was way off. And the only one in a stud. Of course it was. 

Don't you just love that cast iron compass thing though? I keep waiting to hear it crash to the ground. I'm seriously considering wall anchors. The nails seem to be doing okay for now though.

So there you have it! Easy peasy! And I can pretty much guarantee that it would not have come out nearly that nice without the template trick. So thanks Sherry!

Stay tuned for more of my DIY details, and a few tips learned the hard way.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

While You Were Out - The Study Reveal

Do you remember that show "While You Were Out"? It was on TLC. Basically, a designer would come in and help a homeowner redo a room in their house while their spouse/significant other/roommate was gone for the weekend. Fun stuff!

Well, I decided to decorate the study while the husband was living it up (at a work conference) in Vegas. I LOVE it! And the best part is, he does too! And, it was an adventure, with some learning experiences along the way for me.

Remember this sad picture of the mess in our study?


Yikes! It was bad. And it got worse before it got better. I unpacked every single box in there. I also did tackled the filing in the process. And it was BAD! I still have an 8" pile of shredding to tackle. UGH. Anyone else hate filing? Ok, sorry, I got sidetracked there for a minute. Back to the study!

You know by now how picky my husband is. I'm forever showing him pictures on Pinterest that he looks at, and then looks at me like I'm nuts. Nothing feminine. Nothing bright. No pastels. No loud prints. I could keep going, but I think you get the picture. I also have a love for all things vintage lately, which he has embraced ever so slightly.

In my browsing one day, I came across this beautiful office nook at BHG:


LOVE! I mean, everything about it. The black desk, with the stained chair. The wall color. The curtains. The collage. The unique lamp. A tray full of goodies. Love. And so I do what I always do. The infamous, "What do you think?" The answer was shocking. "I like it. Do that." And me, "Really? I mean really? You like all of it? Is there anything you don't like?" "Nope. Go for it."

So we picked a wall color that seemed close to that one, and after dropping him off at the airport, I headed over to SW for some paint. We chose Trusty Tan by the way. And the pictures don't do it justice. It's a muted tan, but much more rich than it is showing in the pictures. It more closely matches the inspiration picture, but in this room it's either shade or full sun, so I opted for shade on picture taking day. Except for the last picture, which is closer to sunset.

Before I show you all the pics, keep in mind I am NOT a decorator, just a wannabe. In fact, this is the first room I've actually decorated from scratch. Ready? Here is what we now get to see every morning when we come down the stairs:


Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket


Oooh, pay no attention to the furniture movers under the writing desk. The paint was dry, but not cured, and I was afraid to set it on the carpet. Hubby was due home though, so I wanted to get it in the room.

So there it is! I didn't stick to my $100 budget, but I did stick to my $200 budget...if you don't count the money spent on paint. It only took 1 gallon to paint the whole room though.

My biggest struggles were trimming near the ceiling, and hanging the curtain rod. I'm 5' 3", and we have 9ft ceilings. Even with our step ladder, I had to stand on my tip toes to trim near the ceiling. As for the curtain rod? Well first, I've never hung a curtain rod before. And second, I've never put in wall anchors. My first attempt was into a stud, and I completely smashed the anchor. I learned the second time around on that one. The remaining anchors went in without a hitch, and miracle of miracles, it was absolutely, perfectly level! Yay me!

There are so many things l love about the room. First, the collage wall. It's all centered around the Thomas Kincaid my sister got us for our wedding. We never hung it in the last house. We didn't really hang anything in the last house. So I wanted it to have a special place here.

Photobucket

Yeah, I know that the door knob thing is really close to the picture. This is the one piece that I mismarked. And it was the one piece where the nail went into a stud. Go figure. It might get moved. Someday.

Oooh, and I love the little trunk from the second picture! I found that little guy at Hobby Lobby, and it's filled with all of our blank CDs/DVDs.

And I finally found a temporary home for my Family Rules sign! I designed it myself, and got it printed on canvas from Winkflash. Can I just say, their customer service was so helpful! The birdcage is a garage sale find from my SIL. $2! I'm not sure it has a permanent home there yet. And the bars need a fresh coat of paint.

Photobucket

If you looked closely at the full bookcase, you'll see that while I would love a magazine worthy home, we're all about balancing the decorations with the personal effects. We're not very good at this because we like having our momentos, our nick-nacks/clutter...at least the ones that are important to us. On this bookcase you will find...Optimus Prime (in truck form), a shelf full of Star Trek books, and a commemorative pin, an award my husband received for service on the county DUI taskforce, a commemorative mug from his high school band days, and wooden box we got on our first trip together to the beach way back when. The only thing that I think didn't make it back on the shelf was the Star Trek Pez collection. It was a Christmas gift a year or 2 ago, but I had to draw he line somewhere!

While we don't have a real desk yet (since we both have laptops currently) we still needed room for that officey type stuff. The table to the left of the bookcase has a file drawer. It also holds our printer. The black box under the printer holds all of the paper/cardstock etc. for the printer, and the basket on the bottom shelf of the bookcase holds envelopes, notepads, and a tray full of pens, pencils, paperclips, etc. Oh, and the big ugly shredder is hiding next to the writing desk. You can see the bottom of it in the last picture. It's black to it blends. You see it when you are facing the desk, but not from the doorway. Bonus!

Well, what do you think? What's your favorite part? 
Stay tuned for the lamp and writing desk DIY details!

Edit: Linked up to the September Before & After Party @ Thirfty Decor Chick

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

A Little Sunshiney

I'm feeling a little sunshiney today. I keep forgetting to post about my sunshiney headband from the lovely Nichelle @ Vintage WannaBee. So cute! And I love that it's a metal headband. I have issues with plastic ones. Apparently my head is shaped funny, because they never fit right. And since I keep forgetting take a picture, I snagged a quick one on my cell phone at work today.
Cute huh? I just bought another one that should be in the mail any day now! It's a vintagey flapper style one, so we'll see how that works for me.

What you can't see is this picture is the primer still on my arm, (and a little on my leg), and the paint under my fingernails from picking annoying little fuzzies off the wall from the roller. It was a good roller too! Somehow, it started fuzzing a bit on the second coat.

So the study is officially painted, and I LOVE it! I've also been working on painting the sewing table. This is not going so good. The top fell over at some point during drying, and got some scratches in the primer. I sanded, but then was worried about the scratched parts that had no primer. So I touched it up, and after one coat of paint, it looks awful! I have some more sanding to do. Hopefully it'll be done in time for Friday's reveal to the husband!

I've been shopping like mad. I had to extend my $100 budget to $200. It's not budging again. I will return stuff if I have to. The most expensive part has been the wall collage. Wall d├ęcor adds up quick! Even at sale prices. I also tend to overbuy, see what fits, and return the rest. So hopefully I'll end up a bit under budget. Fingers crossed!

Tonight is more painting (sewing table), and possibly hanging curtains. I found one I like at Target. And when I say one, I mean one. They are sold in single panels, so now I have to try to find a second. There's a Target on my way home form work. I'm REALLY hoping they have the other half! Otherwise, I'll have to shop elsewhere. And I really like this one. The color is perfect, the fabric is nice, AND it's machine washable! A must with my allergies…not that I will wash it as often as I should, but hopefully at least a couple times a year. We shall see!

That's all for now! Hopefully I'll have some pictures of the finishes study to show you all soon!

What are you working on this week? Anything fun and exciting?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Busy Busy Busy!!!

Ahhh! I'm SO ready for life to slow down a bit. Too much going on though to slow down now!

Last weekend, our friends' daughter slept over. She's 8. We had a day full of crafts, and she had a blast. Sunday was filled with church, and dinner with friends. A fun weekend, but no time for laundry. Who needs clean clothes anyway? Well, we kind of do. We've been scrouging. I guess I know what I'm doing this weekend!

So what else is going on? Well, my last post showed our packed and messy study. If you think that was bad, let me tell you...it got SO much worse! I started pulling everything out of boxes and sorting. Today, I actually had to clear a spot on the floor so I could sit to dig thru our box of office supplies. Not cool!

Oh, and in the midst of that, I came across the box of paperwork from the months we were at my parents. Our filing cabinet was in storage, so everything got tossed in the box. No rhyme or reason, just a big ol' mess! Unfortunately, when I opened the filing cabinet, I was reminded that half of the top drawer was even MORE filing. UGH. I hate filing. Hence it piling up so bad. In the end, I got it all done, and was left with a foot high stack of papers to shred. No joke! It's insane. I spent an hour shredding today, and I'm almost halfway thru. The good news is that I can see the floor again in spots. Progress people!

The best news though, is that I found an office picture that I loved, and my hubs (fondly referred to form time to time as Mr. Picky Pants) actually likes it! I kept saying "Really? Are you sure? Is there anything you don't like?" For those who haven't followed our decorating progress (or lack thereof), he's lost. Instead of relying on my judgement though, he just hates everything. I think it's a bit overwhelming to try to focus on a whole house at one time like we are, and it's hard to see the big picture. So this is a huge step. Granted, he'll probably hate it when it's done, but too bad for him! I asked multiple times, and now I'm off and running.

So what next? After the floor is completely clear, I get to paint! Whoohoo! Then I need blinds, and wall art. I'm still deciding on the best arrangement for the room. It's an odd shape, so I'm struggling with the best use of space. I will also be painting my little sewing table to function as a writing desk until we get around to finding a real desk. It's quite low on the priority list, so this will work for now. I am not really using the table anyway. It's one that stores the machine underneath on it's side. Did you know that many newer machines should not be stored on their side? Supposedly the oil will leak. Who knew?

Kitchen table update: We saw sample #1! The color is beautiful! In fact, our sales guy said he had 3 people try to buy a table with that stain as they saw it on his desk. We want a bit more distressing done on the edges, and a little more pronounced on the top as well. I can't wait to see the next sample! After that, we get our table! I can't wait to see it, and to show it to you! This table was our splurge with the new house. My parents have an oak table that has survived 3 kids, and looks pretty much brand new. We wanted something like that. Our days of coasters and placements will be done! Can't wait!

Oooh, and I'll have to show you the latest thrifty find too! I haven't taken pictures of my new jars yet. I HAVE taken pictures of 2 bird cages my SIL found for me. But I don't want to show them yet, because I haven't done anything with them yet. I have ideas though! They are going to be FABULOUS!

I have a slipcover project lined up for this week too for our plaid hand-me-down loveseat. And no, I've never made a slipcover before. It should be interesting! I'll be sure to share, whether its horrible or not.

And oh yeah, we both work full-time too. Phew! Are you tired yet? I am, just thinking about it! So I apologize for not blogging lately, but hopefully (fingers crossed) I'll have some fabulous pictures to share! At least I hope so. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

This Week's Project

This week, I'm going to get something done. I lost the weekend with a much needed weekend away at the lake. It was my brother's birthday dinner Saturday. Then Sunday we all went out on the boat, and stopped for a swim in the lake. It was SO nice!

And then I came back to a wreck of a house. I have about 6 loads of laundry waiting to be washed, and another 3 that are sitting in baskets to put away. Blech!

And I also assigned myself to unpacking/cleaning the office. It's one of the rooms that still has boxes, which I have been adamantly ignoring. This is what it looks like pre-cleaning:
It's a small room, technically 8x11, but it actually smaller than that. The wall to the left goes over about 6 inches inside the door, and then straight back for 2 feet. Then it angles out the full 8foot width. It's a nightmare of a room to figure out furniture-wise.

We have no desk, and really don't have a desktop computer anyway right now. I've got some ideas to make it usable (or at least the appearance of usable for the time being), but first I need to clear the clutter!

Wish me luck!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Redo That Wasn't

If you follow any home decor blogs, you've seen some AMAZING furniture transformations. Usually it's drastic. Beautifully painted pieces that make a statement. I especially love the china cabinets. A painted cabinet adds so much interest to a room. One of my favorites? Look at this one from Brooke @ The Crafting Chicks:
Really beautiful, don't you think?

Enter my china cabinet:


Photobucket
Let me tell you the story of this cabinet. When we were buying our first house, we had nothing. A friend of ours was handling the sale of some of her mom's furniture as her mom transitioned into a nursing home. She had this cabinet, with a matching dining room table and chairs set. She wanted $750 for the set. Our friend (likely remembering her own poor as dirt newlywed days), said she'd give it to us for $7.50, and just tell her mom she got seven fifty for it. (So kind!!!)
And there you have it. This set served as a our kitchen set the last 7 years. Now that we have a dining room, it's in there. It will be replaced someday, but considering the other furniture and expenses we've got at the moment to furnish our new home, this set will be hanging around for a while. I don't hate it, but I wanted to try and spruce it up a bit.

Unfortunately, since it's a matched set, there will be no painting of the china cabinet. So what else could I do? Hardware! Replace all that bronze with something shiny and new.. I was going back and forth between brushed nickel (to match the builder chandelier), and oil rubbed bronze (which is the direction we're headed). I got really excited about how this little update was going to make such a huge difference. So excited in fact, that I grabbed a screw driver and paint scraper, and proceeded to pry off ALL of the back plates. The back plates have a screw pull in the middle, but then nails on the top and bottom of each as you can see below:

Photobucket

So anyway, when I say pry, I mean pry. Those nails have been in there for 50+ years, and weren't dying to pop right out.

Now for the easy part, the drawer pulls.

Photobucket

And I kind of forgot about the hinges. But since they are on top of the doors instead of mostly hidden underneath, they had to be included too.

So here's me, all proud of myself for prying all those back plates off without damaging the wood. I've got my little baggy full of the different pieces parts and head off to Lowes in search of something new.

Now, if you've ever replaced furniture hardware, you know where this is going...

First, no one makes those hinges. And when I say no one, I mean NO ONE. Not only did they not have them at Lowes, but I drove an hour to another hardware store that is said to have the largest selection in the state. Bust. They don't seem to make them anymore. I did find out they are 45˚ offset h-hing though! Not that it helped. The sales lady actually said she had someone a few years back cut notches into her doors to get rid of that 45˚ angle so that she could use some 90˚ hinges. Sad, but not defeated. At this point, I'm still trying to make this work.

And then I see a china cabinet redo from Beckie @ Infarrantly Creative:


Awesome! I love the fabric in the doors. I think it's game storage, so this way you don't see all the stuff inside. But really what got me is that she painted the hinges! So I emailed her, and she promptly replied with a link to a tutorial she has for painting metal (thanks Beckie!) Crisis averted. If I can't find the hinges, I'll spray paint them to match my new hardware...which by the way hubby was so NOT on board with. He's a bit afraid of me and spray paint. Not that he has reason to. He's just never seen me wield a can before. I'll have to work on that. Besides his (adamant) hesitation, the idea is still working in my head.

Except. Along with the hinge trouble, I ended up having drawer pull trouble. A pull is a pull, right? WRONG! Mine are 2.5" on center. The standard is 3", but you can find them bigger too. Smaller? Good luck. 98% are the cup pulls, which I happen to be fond of, but hubs hates the look. Plus it might have been too contemporary for the set. The other 2 I saw? one was pretty much what I already have. The other was a really thin chrome bar. Bust. Now, I'm sure I can find them online. I've actually looked. The problem lies in finding matching back plates. And I was hesitant to spend all that money and have one company's "oil rubbed bronze" not match another's.

Now, I know I can spray paint everything. But if I screw it up, I'm stuck. I already know there is no easily (or cheaply) replacing this hardware.

And so sadly, all the brass went back on, nails and all.

The redo that wasn't.

But, I'll make it work. I'm slowly decorating around it. I've got a few things in place already, but I'm going to make you wait until it's all done to see all put together!

The moral of the story? Only pry off ONE piece of each hardware type before you start hunting down replacements. If it's an older furniture piece, you won't likely find stuff that fits just right. And if you do? Fantastic! At least someone did :)

Friday, August 5, 2011

Pillow Week - Rouched Pillow

It's my last day of Pillow Week! I wanted to put some pattern in my dining room. I showed you this fabric last week:
And some of you are thinking...pillows? In a dining room?

Well, we have these 2 extra chairs. They fit around the table, but it's a bit cramped. Also, they are minis. They are child sized compared to the other chairs. Still the same seat height, but just a smaller overall frame. They sit in the corners, and so I though, why not? It'll add some texture and color to the other side of the room.

And so, I came up with this:
Photobucket


Cute, huh? To say hubby disagrees in an understatement. First, it "looked like it had a big fat garter around the middle". Then it "looked like a diaper cover". Followed by "It's too old lady". Hmmmm. Did I mention I love him? LOL! (And now half of you who were on the fence about the pillow are thinking of garter belts and diaper covers. Ha!)

Here's one issue. He hates the dining room set. I'll tell you all about how we came to own this set this weekend. It's not that he absolutely hates it. It's just not antique enough to be vintage, and not modern enough to be a modern classic.

Issue #2. He hates yellow. It's MY favorite though, and since he loves me, he's given me some lee-way to go a bit nuts...to some extent.

Anyway, he thinks the floral pattern makes the chairs look even more "grandma-ish". I told him to give it a chance, and wait until the room's done. Maybe they'll grown on him. Or maybe he won't hate them quite so much :)

Photobucket

But for now at least, here they sit:
Photobucket

Okay. Ready for the tutorial link? Well, this one was actually inspired by a table runner. This one, to be exact:



LOVE the color! This beauty is from Living With Lindsay. She shows how to do the rouching thing.

Well, what do you think? Have I inspired you to make some pillows? If so, I'd love to see! Link me up :)

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Oh the Memories

I woke up early this morning from a weird dream, and couldn't fall back asleep. A whole HOUR early mind you. Bleh! The dream didn't have any people that I knew, but one person in the dream reminded me a bit of a guy I was crushing on in 8th grade. I think of him as "the one that got away". Not in terms of marriage or anything like that. Just a boy I liked that could have been more, but I let it slip away.

Here's how it went...
This guy and I were friends. Like pass notes in class, sometimes talk on the phone kind of friends. On our infamous 8th grade field trip, a "friend" of mine talked me into just telling him how I felt. Oh boy! We all know how that can be. The whole, "if I tell him, and he doesn't like me back, then I just ruined a good friendship" thing. Well, I kind of ruined that anyway. Oh but I had help!

After one day of walking around the sites of DC with this guy, my "friend" (and I say "friend" because she turned out to never be a true friend) talked me into calling him that night and telling him I liked him. (Is this sounding so VERY 8th grade yet? LOL!).

As so I did. I think it went something like, "Hi. I like you. Like you like you." and then hung up. Actually, I don't remember what I said. I think I blocked it from my memory as one of those traumatic times you don't want to remember. I was SOOO embarrassed! I was not like my "friend" who was a flirt, and was bold with nothing to lose.

I stressed over this the whole next day, still feeling extremely embarrassed, and not wanting to see him because I might literally die of embarrassment...because that's possible when you're 14 you know.

And so I did what any mature 14 year old would do in this situation. I found him at lunch and told him that I didn't like him like that, and walked away.

And now to the "friend". She was good friends with his friend. His friend told her that he (the guy I liked) liked me too, and was going to ask me out. She knew this as I decided to take it back, and go tell him I didn't like him. She knew this after the fact when I was still embarrassed, and completely miserable. And I didn't find out she knew until it was too late, from another friend who thought I should know.

Looking back, I have always wished I'd have had the guts to go talk to him again. I never did. I am a coward that way. Needless to say, 2 friendships were ruined that day. Though maybe one never really existed in the first place.

And I kind of feel bad. I screwed up and lost a friend, but he did too. For all I know he didn't really care. But I know I did, and so maybe he did too. And for that, I'm sorry.

So he's my "one that got away". Now let me be very clear. I don't think about him in the "What if we'd gotten married" sense of "one that got away". I'm absolutely head over heels in love with my husband, even when he thinks my pillows are ugly (oh, you just wait until tomorrow!) But this guy is more of the "What if I'd had a boyfriend that summer, and maybe (hope against hope) slightly into high school. Would it have made those teen years a little more bearable? Would I have gained a bit of confidence? Or would the inevitable break-up have made it even worse?

If I could go back, and change one thing thru those early teen years, I think it would be that. It's the one thing I wonder the most about. But then, would I be the same me? Would I have met my husband? Because if not, I wouldn't change it. That whole crazy butterfly effect thing.

So there you have it. One weird dream, and I get all thoughtful and sentimental today. Oh the memories.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Pillow Week - Poppy Pillow

Day 2 of Pillow Week!!! Today, I've got a poppy pillow to share. So much fun!

Ever since I saw this beautiful thing on V & Co., I've wanted to make one:
Isn't that color combo just fabulous? The yellow and red against the muted sea-green/blue color. Wow. Oh, and I should also mention that the above pillow is actually from a guest poster, Allison from Cluck. Cluck. Sew.

I had the black felt (1/4 yard on a 60" roll) already purchased for my initial poppy pillow idea for the family room. Not wanting it to go to waste (and REALLY wanting to make a poppy pillow), I decided to work with it. I also had some linen-ish material left from my table runner project, which I have yet to complete, but only need the length of the yardage I purchased, not the width.

So all I had to buy was the pillow forms, which can be used again and again, and the buttons, which were on clearance. Score! Red to match my lamps.

I followed Allison's simple instructions (found HERE), and wound up with this:
Photobucket

I made my flower a bit smaller in hopes that hubby wouldn't hate it QUITE so much. Not sure it worked, but it's lasted a few days, and he hasn't tried to hide it yet.

And look! We hung our very first picture. It only took 4 months to do :)

Photobucket

Photobucket

Don't mind my mess of home magazines, window blind pamphlets and catalogs under the end table. They like to collect there.
 
Oooh, and notice the mini runner? Here's a closer look:

More of the linen-ey stuff :) I got the idea from this:
 

You can find a tutorial on Weddingbee
 
Differences? Mine are not actually burlap. they are much smaller :) and I sewed my ruffle on top, vs. tucking it underneath. I am having an issue with the one edge wanting to curl under from the pleats, but I'm hoping that works itself out as the fabric sits in that shape. We shall see!

So there you have it! My poppy pillow, and a bonus mini runner!

One more pillow to go! Stay tuned.
Jackie's bookshelf: read

Fragile EternityFlyteMagykMy Name Is MemoryKey of LightKey of Knowledge

More of Jackie's books »
Jackie's  book recommendations, reviews, favorite quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists