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Archive for the ‘home improvement’ Category

welcome to my garden

hey y’all,

lazy. i must be lazy. i thought it was the heat. even the humidity. possibly my blood pressure? my thyroid?? that’s always a likely culprit. OR … i could blame it on the cancer treatments (some might call that playing the “cancer card”).

but no, it’s laziness. i confess it to you, my dear readers. all 4 of you. i just can’t seem to get myself in gear lately. or perhaps i should say i’m stuck in one gear: neutral. or is that even a gear?

okay, enough whining! i just had my 3 month oncology checkup and all is well. yea! also, i’m about to reach another milestone in this journey of survival: at the end of may, it’ll be two years since my cancer diagnosis. YEA again! thanks to each one of you for your prayers, good thoughts, words of encouragment and support. i wouldn’t be here today without you and your faithfulness.

after every good 3 month checkup, it feels as if i’ve been given a gift. another three months! which isn’t a bad thing for someone who’s learning to live ONE DAY at a time. three months sounds like a LONG time to me.

speaking of living … and having faith in the future, this is the first time in over a decade that i’ve actually planted something. i call it a garden, but it’s just barely. a garden, that is.

if you’ve done your homework, you know that we recently filled in our backyard inground pool (if not, back up and read my blog about it). it was a nasty affair, the pool and filling it in, so it seemed apropos to use that area for The Garden.

at this point, it has a little straggly apple tree (shades of charlie brown’s cmas tree … but sweet and sentimental and represents the ONE life that ben and i are making together), 3 rose bushes (significant number, for the three children i bore … and bore … and bore), two crepe myrtles (one for me, one for my sweet hubby) and a GORGEOUS vintage arch/arbor thingy i found in lampasas a couple of weekends ago. what it represents i do not know. maybe the welcoming of family and friends into our life (garden). i fell in love with it as soon as i saw it at crazy nana’s.

lordy me. but this business of planting is a painful proposition. first there’s the shopping (which i do well, unless it’s walmart and/or a payday … arghh), then the lugging of the plants/trees/soil mix/tools/gloves/pots/watering can/plant food/rose food (see?! i told you i shop well!) TO the car, then OUT of the car, then TO the patio/backyard. already i’m pooped and ready for a nap.

THEN you have the actual PLANTING of the plants. gawd-help-us. now, being the OCD middle child that i am, i had all my ducks in a row, as it were. my plants and bushes were lined up on the patio, sorted by color and variety, alphabetized and ready to plant. okay, i’m kidding about the alphabetizing. but truly, i had a PLAN for my garden. okay, so it was only in my head, but it was there: this plant would go here, that plant would go there. so on and so forth. blah blah blah.

i knew that my dear sweet hubby wanted a couple of trees, which was great (because i wanted them too). but i thought we would choose them.

together.

one day, he came home dragging a big pot with a tall stick shooting out from it.

“what is that?” i asked.

“a TREE!” he replies, and continues to drag it through the house, out the back door, straight to the virgin garden area. he grabs the shovel and before i can even speak (and that’s pretty quick) he’s already shoved the shovel into the ground.

whaaa??? what about my plans? my layout for the garden?? is that where the tree is supposed to go?!?! he has absolutely NO concept of my master plan, nor does he seem to care. i quickly weigh my options. is it worth saying something? stopping him, mid-shovel? he was determined and intent on planting that sad little stick of an apple tree.

right there. in that spot.

in the end, i didn’t have it in me to argue. i’d work around that little tree. i took it as a sign that THIS little apple tree would be the beginning of our garden, and as corny and as cheesy as it sounds, it would be a new beginning … the first day of our future. and so i pulled the bag of miracle grow over to the hole and we planted that little tree together.

i hope it survives. we’re watering it, feeding it, loving it (and yes, i’m talking to it every day … i read somewhere that it’s good to talk to plants). maybe one day it’ll surprise us with grand-apples. haha

geez this is getting long. time to stop the insanity. my word count is already 729. i can’t help it. verbosity runs in my family. my mom could never tell the simplest of stories in under an hour. i guess it’s true the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. 🙂 more gardening stories to follow … for now, enjoy the pics. and remember, it’s still a WORK IN PROGRESS!

love and hugs to all,
terry lee

The kiss of the sun for pardon,
The song of the birds for mirth,
One is nearer God’s heart in a garden
Than anywhere else on earth.
~Dorothy Frances Gurney, “Garden Thoughts”

Gardens are a form of autobiography.
~Sydney Eddison, Horticulture magazine, August/September 1993

Mary, Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells, and cockle shells,
And pretty maids all in a row.
~English Nursery Rhyme

great rusty crusty arch for my garden. it's flanked by two crepe myrtles which are still in need of planting ...

great rusty crusty arch for my garden. it's flanked by two crepe myrtles which are still in need of planting ...

close up of arch design

close up of arch design

our little apple tree. bless its heart.

our little apple tree. bless its heart.

i call these my strawberry-banana roses ... pink and yellow

i call these my strawberry-banana roses ... pink and yellow

i think this is such a beautiful pink

i think this is such a beautiful pink

had to have yellow (rose of texas)

had to have yellow (rose of texas)

my three little rose bushes ... for alan, tara and matt

my three little rose bushes ... for alan, tara and matt

tara admires her work

tara admires her work

my patio table with new cushions and lovely pink begonias ... with a view of The Garden ... love that arch!

my patio table with new cushions and lovely pink begonias ... with a view of The Garden ... love that arch!

searched high and low for just the right cushions. didn't find them high, but found them at lowe's. haha

searched high and low for just the right cushions. didn't find them high, but found them at lowe's. haha

my patio makeover. it used to be verrrrry scary. now it's an outside room! very lovely and inviting. love it!

my patio makeover. it used to be verrrrry scary. now it's an outside room! very lovely and inviting. love it!

found these beads at the GW barn last week for 75c. they were a tangled mess that took hours to straighten out. but worth it!

found these beads at the GW barn last week for 75c. they were a tangled mess that took hours to straighten out. but worth it!

when the wind stirs the beads, it reminds me of raindrops. a perfect place for those silly 70s disco ball beads!

when the wind stirs the beads, it reminds me of raindrops. a perfect place for those silly 70s disco ball beads!

sort've the focal point of my patio ... an old metal shelf i picked up for a dollar. put some real sweeties on it (love my rose plates, saucers, cups, etc) and flanked it all with the two tall white shutters i got for a song at the lampasas city-wide

sort've the focal point of my patio ... an old metal shelf i picked up for a dollar. put some real sweeties on it (love my rose plates, saucers, cups, etc) and flanked it all with the two tall white shutters i got for a song at the lampasas city-wide

another view of my patio room ...

another view of my patio room ...

LOVE these pink hydrangeas! set them next to an old lawn chair covered in a vintage pink and white bedsheet, finished off with a pink pillow from big lots.

LOVE these pink hydrangeas! set them next to an old lawn chair covered in a vintage pink and white bedsheet, finished off with a pink pillow from big lots.

lace chandie i bought from sue a while back. added some color by putting pink roses on the ends

lace chandie i bought from sue a while back. added some color by putting pink roses on the ends

the little white wicker chair (from sue's) is perfect for my flowers!

the little white wicker chair (from sue's) is perfect for my flowers!

this is an old cracker barrel rocker that i found a few years back at an antique mall. painted it antique white and had been using it inside. i think it looks great on my patio. the mosaic piece next to it was marked way down at 'tuesday morning' because of a small chipped area. lucky me!

this is an old cracker barrel rocker that i found a few years back at an antique mall. painted it antique white and had been using it inside. i think it looks great on my patio. the mosaic piece next to it was marked way down at 'tuesday morning' because of a small chipped area. lucky me!

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easter-terrylee-1964

hey y’all!

it’s easter weekend and this is the first time in almost 30 years that i haven’t made easter baskets for my children. i mean, does a package of reese’s peanut butter cup eggs count for anything? that and some other bags of candy i hastily bought at target last night. it’s not that i didn’t WANT to make baskets, it’s just the old “my spirit is willing but the flesh is weak” thing goin’ on.

don’t mean to sound sacrilegious, but for me, this wasn’t exactly a “holy” week. it was more like “holy hell” week. feel free to stand clear of me … wouldn’t want the lightning strike to hit you too. 😉

ANYway, in addition to all the humdrum daily routine business this week, i also spent HOURS and HOURS on the phone with incompetent service representatives (i won’t name names, but their initials are TXU) and with banks getting mortgage refinancing options. the latter being a fricking full-time job by itself.

ALSO, i had a crew tearing up my backyard most of the week. okay, actually they were filling in my old, useless, eyesore of a pool … a dream of mine that was a long time coming. i took pics of the fill-in progress and the finished product.

however, unless you saw the pool before (something only my inner circle of peeps have experienced … and you know who you are, OR you’re a nosy neighbor … and you know who YOU are), then you probably won’t or can’t fully appreciate the “after” pics.

still. i’m gonna share them with you. after all the crap i’ve been through this week from hell, this is my reward. i have grandiose plans of a lush garden retreat (think english country) with rose bushes, flowers that attract butterflies, a birdbath (a nod to the once-upon-a-time pool), vintage cement statues, a gazebo (after i win the lottery) and a lovely sitting area.

for now, i have “planted” a single pink metal flower smack in the center of the pool (i need to stop calling it that) as a promise, a hope of what is to come. what will be. and besides, it’s cute and makes me smile. 🙂

i hope you all have a blessed easter and find something to give you hope. and peace.

love and hugs,
terrylee

crew member in my pool, hacking holes for drainage (again, hate to name names but his rhymes with bus, as in, 'hop on the bus, g-s.')

crew member in my pool, hacking holes for drainage (again, hate to name names but his rhymes with bus, as in, 'hop on the bus, g_s.')

an ugly site, but you gotta crack some eggs if you want an omelette

an ugly site, but you gotta crack some eggs if you want an omelette

it's getting there!

it's getting there!

matt and tara horsing around on the heavy equipment ... when the crew's away, the mice will play!

matt and tara horsing around on the heavy equipment ... when the crew's away, the mice will play!

matt and me

matt and me

a princess and her ride

a princess and her ride

matt, master of his domain!

matt, master of his domain!

another view

another view

nosy neighbors ... you can't see it from here, but they probably have their binoculars on me at that very moment

nosy neighbors ... you can't see them from here, but they probably had their binoculars on me that very moment

the sun sets on another day of pool filling

the sun sets on another day of pool filling

next day, gus stops smoking long enough to pick up a shovel

next day, gus stops smoking long enough to pick up a shovel

little did they know we'd been playing with their toys last night

little did they know we'd been playing with their toys last night

the completed project!

the completed project!

matt, taking a "dive" into my future garden

matt, taking a 'dive' into my future garden

sweet pink metal flower from hobby lobby

sweet pink metal flower from hobby lobby

the pink promise of my future garden ...

the pink promise of my future garden ...

ps. if you ever find yourself in need of a “dirt crew”, i’d recommend Shed’s Construction in Belton, Texas. they were v. helpful, obliging and inexpensive (compared to other quotes i obtained).

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le-bain


Yikes! It’s already March?! Where has the time gone?

Well, in my defense (as IF anybody really cares and is waiting with baited breath for my next blog …), life’s been crazier than usual lately. But anymore that seems the norm.

I have oodles of pics I want to share. But before I do, here’s just a little glimpse into my life of leisure (haha) recently … sort of a reality blog, if you will. Not a gosh-darn thing to do with junking, antiquing, shabby chic, etc. So consider yourself forewarned and just skip down to the pictures if you must. 🙂

Last Tuesday my 15 year old son was in the bathroom, like, forever. I kept telling him to hurry up but there was no getting him out. Don’t ask and I won’t tell.

After about 2 hours (!!) he finally emerges and yells, “Mom! Something’s wrong in the bathroom!”

OH. MY. GAWD.

NOT something a mom wants to hear. Seems as if when he stood up, his legs were numb (uh, yeah, 2 hours of sitting on the toilet will do that to you) and he fell backward. 200 plus pounds of Solid Man crashed onto the tank and it shattered, causing a great and mighty flood in my bathroom. At least 2-3 inches of standing water.

After another couple of hours and using most of the towels in the house, he had sopped and mopped up the mess (under my supervision). Geez, what a nightmare.

As it happens, he had been playing his DS while pooping (sorry all ye faint of heart) … which explains a lot. No, he wasn’t injured, but his back was a little sore … probably from the mopping more so than the fall.

Hubby and I decided we’d have to call The Man. We’re just not the DIY types. But the only plumber we knew was good ol’ Al The Plumber (henceforth to be called ATP) … which was fine except the last time we used him he was more Pepé le Pew than plumber, if you know what I mean.

However, hubby and I convinced ourselves that it’s better the devil you know than the devil you don’t. I was under the strictest orders not to be alone with ATP (perhaps I’ll get sued for writing this but I refuse to change the name to protect the guilty).

ATP came the next afternoon and said we needed a new tank AND toilet. The whole shebang. Because I wanted to pick it out myself, he (ATP) went on his merry way and said he couldn’t come back till the NEXT day.

So Tara and I schlepped down to Lowe’s and Home Depot looking for the perfect potty. Sheesh! What a chore. Not NEAR as fun as junking. And they display those damn toilets so high, I wrenched my neck just trying to look at them. Arghh.

But now we are the proud owners of a new Jacuzzi brand (crazy! I didn’t know Jacuzzi made toilets!!) potty. Woohoo. It comes with a “5 out of 5 stars” flush rating. Whatever the hell THAT is. Can you imagine? They have flush ratings! AND it says you can flush a “basket of golf balls” down this baby!

Yeah, but can it stand up to my 15 year old’s “business”?! THAT is the question.

So ATP showed up the next morning to do whatever it is that plumbers do in the bathroom. Last time (several years ago) he asked me to sit on his lap while he decided what he was going to charge me (true, true story). Oddly enough, he didn’t ask me that this time. Ha! Guess I just don’t have it anymore.

But what I DO have are two functional bathrooms again. Thank you Lord, thank you Lowe’s, thank you ATP. And speaking of Lowe’s, Tara and I saw the funniest thing in their parking lot. Naturally, I had to take a pic. Words can’t describe it … but the picture says it all.

reminds me of how the cobbler's children never have shoes ... or something like that. poor mr. fixit.

reminds me of how the cobbler's children never have shoes ... or something like that. poor mr. fixit.

And that concludes the pre-blog program. On with the show … just some shots around my home; all things old and pink and turquoise and lace and ivory and pearly and … well, enjoy!

Love and hugs to all,
TerryLee

sue's one-of-a-kind table. great work, sue! i LOVE it!

sue's one-of-a-kind table. great work, sue! i LOVE it!

it's right at home in my kitchen!

it's right at home in my kitchen!

love this look! vintage aprons as valances on my kitchen window

love this look! vintage aprons as valances on my kitchen window

b'fast table and vintage aprons as window t'ment

b'fast table and vintage aprons as window t'ment

how i incorporated that great wicker sofa and rocker (see previous blog) into my front living room

how i incorporated that great wicker sofa and rocker (see previous blog) into my front living room

vintage secretary with paris-themed items

vintage secretary with paris-themed items

dress form 'dollie' watches over things while i'm not around

dress form 'dollie' watches over things while i'm not around

close up ... sweet gloves and pearls

close up ... sweet gloves and pearls

vintage rocker from burnet

vintage rocker from burnet

sweet vintage rose cups and pink victorian shoe inside glass shade ... thanks for the ideas, sue!

sweet vintage rose cups and pink victorian shoe inside glass shade ... thanks for the ideas, sue!

VERY sweet southern belle table scarf from an angel up north miss merry mary! thanks again, mary.

VERY sweet southern belle table scarf from an angel up north miss merry mary! thanks again, mary.

a great old mccoy piece (thanks, sue!!!). love the turquoise w/pink birdie! inside an old shaker filled with buttons, an old doornob from GW barn

a great old mccoy piece (thanks, sue!!!). love the turquoise w/pink birdie! inside an old shaker filled with buttons, an old door knob from GW barn

loveseat with chenille covering in front room (where's the piano?!)

loveseat with chenille covering in front room (where's the piano?!)

oh yeah, i moved it to the other living area!

oh yeah, i moved it to the other living area!

grouping above piano ... old window and shutters with my parents' picure layered on it

grouping above piano ... old window and shutters with my parents' picure layered on it

sweet lil cherub from sue's booth

sweet lil cherub from sue's booth

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Hey y’all!

What a crazy week! Has anyone else felt the effects of the full moon? When you work with and around children, you can always tell when it’s a full moon … without looking at the night sky or the calendar.

Thank God the weekend is here. Can’t wait for Sue’s sale and the Crafter’s sidewalk sale!! Woohoo!!!!

Meantime, I wanted to share my most recent project with you guys. A couple of months ago, I bought this darling retro piece, a rocking loveseat at the Sal-Army. I loved the structure and design of this unusual piece … but it needed some TLC. Also, the cushions were this gawd-awful puke-green color but I knew I could ditch them or cover them (I did both).

Last weekend, the planets and stars aligned (I had the strength, time, motivation and creative juices all at one time) and I finally got to work on it. With absolutely no forethought (as Sue says, “I don’t think, I just DO!”), I began with a paint brush and a bucket of “antique white” paint.

Finished up with Goodwill bargain barn-acquired curtains to cover the green seat cushions, valances for the skirt and pink fringe from Sue’s booth. Tossed the back cushions (yuckie yuck) and used two old bed pillows covered in yard sale-found (10 cents!!) pink pillowcases. Tied a couple of bows on each side and lay a lovely throw pillow from Sue as the final touch.

The total make-over, including the actual loveseat itself, was under $20. Put it on my front porch next to a sweet little glass-top, rusty table from Sue’s booth and then hung some adorable little garden chandies over it.

Am very pleased (and surprised!) with the results. Now … on to the pictures!

Love and hugs to all!

ugh! ugly puke-green cushions on a grrrrreat retro piece!

ugh! ugly puke-green cushions on a grrrrreat retro piece!

finished product!

completed project, still in my living room

finished product ... antique white paint and on-the-cheap gw linens ... and a lot of hot glue!

on the front porch, its new home

rusty little garden chandies, hanging on front porch

rusty little garden chandies, hanging on front porch. sue's creations

closer up. love these!!

closer up. love these!!

moved the old bench (formerly housed on the front porch) to the side yard, under a tree.

moved the old bench (formerly housed on the front porch) to the side yard, under a tree.

precious little table with glass top ... i stuffed some flowers into the center hole for an instant flower arrangement!

precious little table with glass top ... i stuffed some flowers into the center hole for an instant flower arrangement!

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Hey y’all!

We (Central Texas) escaped the worst of Ike’s strike, thank God. But it breaks my heart to see the damage Ike wreaked on Galveston Island. I have so many wonderful childhood (and adult) memories of the island.

As promised, here are some photos of my new furniture. We recently put in new flooring (see previous blog) and so naturally, the old furniture looked even worse on the new floor … which meant new furniture!

Having raised three children (if you count my 15 year old, who technically isn’t totally raised), I should’ve known that my new furniture wouldn’t remain pristine for long. But I didn’t expect it to happen so frickin’ soon.

Last night, after a lovely dinner with my loving hubby, I put my jammies on and settled into MY chair (oversized, stuffy, comfy chair that I called dibs on before the furniture was even delivered) to watch Ike’s mischief on the Weather Channel.

My feet were the first to notice something amiss. The ottoman was covered with something that felt very uncomfortable to my tootsies.

“What’s on this thing?” I asked aloud while hubby sat quietly on the loveseat, tracking Ike.

On closer inspection, I started to notice orange crumbs all over the ottoman AND chair. Oh.My.Gawd. There were CHEETO crumbs everywhere.

That’s when I remembered that my son (yes, the 15 year old whom I haven’t fully raised) told me that he ate Cheetos and Poptarts for lunch that day (we believe in well-balanced, nutritious diets). He was home alone and apparently decided to have himself a little picnic ON. MY. NEW. FURNITURE. And of course, he chose MY CHAIR.

Sheesh!! The furniture salesman said my new furniture was stain resistant and had the “best in the business” scotchguard. So I tried not to panic and began wiping, shaking, sifting, shifting and lifting a trillion damn Cheeto crumbs and orange stains off my brand spanking new chair and ottoman.

I was sick. SICK. I think I got them all, finally, but at the cost of a near stroke and nervous breakdown.

Hubby, still watching Ike from the new loveseat, gave little moral support. “I use the TV tray when I eat in here”, he offered. “Besides, it’s only furniture, honey.”

Okay, I KNOW it’s only furniture (and there’s a huge hurricane slamming Texas) but it’s BRAND NEW FURNITURE. I’d hoped that we could be civilized enough to keep it clean for at LEAST a week or two. Especially since there are no toddlers or a certain long-haired chihuahua (hello, Domino … I still love you!) in the house.

Sigh.

When my son returns home from his father’s this weekend, we’re going to sit down together and have us a little “come to Jesus” chat: No eating on the new furniture! Here’s a novel idea … eat at the flipping DINING TABLE. We have two to chose from.

Okay, enough ranting. Enjoy the pics. I’m also including a few of some great pieces that Sue (vintagesue) made that I picked up at her booth last week. I love them all, but I think my favorite is the “Vintage Queen” collage. Oh how I wish I had a fraction of her creativity and talent! Love, love, LOVE her work. Thanks, Sue.


Vintage Queen, by Sue. Gosh, I love this piece!

Vintage Queen, by Sue. Gosh, I love this piece!

Close up

Close up

Old hand mirror, blinged up. Sue's the best!

Old hand mirror, blinged up. Sue's the best!

Sue's pillow art

Sue's pillow art

Sweet collage ... I call it Sophie's Boot (Sue's creation, of course!)

Sweet collage ... I call it Sophie's Boot (Sue's creation, of course!)

Charming box, blinged

Charming box, blinged

The little dresser is Sue's magic. The picture and frame are from Sue as well

The little dresser is Sue's magic. The picture and frame are from Sue as well

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Hello y’all!

Have been back at work for a week now. Gosh, I forgot how much FUN it is!! Getting up early, working all day, coming home exhausted, flopping into bed early. And then best of all, I get to do it all over again the next day! Woohoo!!!

I’m in rather hot water with my hubby, whom I left at home with the flooring project to complete. Actually, all he had to do was WATCH the installers and of course, move around some of the furniture. Okay, okay, sweetie … I know the piano is heavy!!

By the time I came home each afternoon, the guys were wrapping up their day of installing and all I had to do was figure out where I wanted my furniture (something I’m still working on!).

I took some pics for y’all, but because I’m so tired (or lazy) there are no clever captions under them. You’re big girls (and boys) and can probably figure out what you’re looking at.

One disclaimer as a preface: The house was/is still a mess in parts (you’ll notice the vacuum sitting pretty like a piece of furniture, dust on the floors from the installation, books stacked on the hearth, etc.).

Please disregard and simply rejoice with me in how lovely the new flooring is! 🙂

Love and hugs to all.

Till next time! 🙂

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