Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Random Thoughts


In all my years of gardening I've never encountered poison ivy...
until this year.  It was a fairly mild case, but since it continued to spread I paid a visit to my dermatologist.
She sent me home with a cream to take care of the poison ivy and also a "patient education" list on caring for dry skin.
I thought it was rather interesting and thought I'd share some highlights in case you, too, might find it interesting:

Dry skin lacks WATER, not lotion or oil.

The MOST DRYING thing you can do to your skin is to apply water to the skin and then to let it evaporate. 

Treatment requires keeping water in the skin, so drinking water doesn't help.

I never really thought of myself as having dry skin, although at this stage of life I am noticing a lot of damage from my long ago habit of sun worshiping.  Oh how I wish I could turn back the hands of time :).  But since that is not possible, I was encouraged by some of the tips for caring for my skin now.

Those tips follow:

  • Quick showers using cooler water.
  • Mild soaps like Dove for Sensitive Skin
  • Pat dry after showering.  Rubbing can cause itchy skin
  • Apply lotion right after drying to help keep moisture in.  My dermatologist has been highly recommending the CeraVe products (pictured above).  They can be found in drugstores. 
  • Avoid scents and dyes.  I have now switched to unscented detergents and have quit using dryer sheets altogether. 
 
 In other random news, I recently saw this product on another blog and thought I'd give it a try.  These BB creams are something I didn't know anything about.  I had been using a mineral powder with a sunscreen underneath.  It was working okay, but I was ready for a change.  This one has sunscreen in it and it seems to do a good job of evening out those middle age flaws (another result of too much sun in my younger days).
Just so you know, I'm not being compensated to talk about these products.  Just sharing a few things that I've found helpful.
If you have any input on skin care or beauty products that you're loving right now, please feel free to share.  

Moving right along from beauty products to puppies...
I told you it was random here today.
This little puppy seems to have been left on a neighbor's porch in the middle of the night.  She had a collar and leash on.  The neighbor has tried everything to find it's owner to no avail.
She's only a couple months old and cute as can be.
Brett & I felt so bad for her, we even tried to let her stay here.
Peanut would have no part of that.  She is too old and set in her ways.
The general consensus around the neighborhood is that somebody bought her and realized they couldn't take care of her so they left her for someone else to figure out.  Luckily this neighbor is determined to find her a home and has found a rescue group that has been able to place her.  According to the rescue worker, this is happening all the time.  It seems so unfair to the poor little puppy.
This whole experience has made me have a new appreciation for the necessity of spaying and neutering our pets.

On that note, I'm wrapping up the randomness for today.
Any random thoughts you'd care to share?




Tuesday, July 22, 2014

When Life Hands You Disarray...

 My messy kitchen table is just an extension of the discombobulation going on here right now.
Very soon my husband's small business will move from a rented office building to our home sweet home.  After nearly 25 years, this will be quite a change for us.
We've been going full-throttle to sort through years and years of stuff in the garage, attic and son's former bedroom to make room for the desks, file cabinets, computers, new phone system, etc. needed for conducting business from home. 


I met Brett at work a long time ago and have worked along with him in some capacity since he started his business all those years ago.
Along with sorting through things here at home, we've been paring down to the bare bones at the office.  In amongst all of the stuff lies years and years of memories.  Former employees, office parties, business trips, loyal customers and on and on...
This (somewhat) unexpected move is reminding me how quickly time goes by.  There seem to be more of those reminders at this stage of life, I think. 
While I'm not quite sure how all of this will work out, I am trying hard to set it up here so that our office space is kept separate from our home space.  
Right now, the upstairs hallway is lined with stuff in transition.
I spent the morning scrubbing baseboards and carpet.
Now it's time to step away from all of that and bring some order and beauty to at least one spot.
I started by clearing the clutter from the table and then went in search of a clean tablecloth. 
 

Okay, I folded this one so carefully after laundering it last time.
What the heck happened?
I briefly considered leaving it. 





But, I just couldn't do it.
I love the looks of freshly pressed vintage linens.
I actually don't mind ironing them either.  Sometimes I'm a wee bit lazy when it comes to wrangling the ironing board out of the coat closet, however.


 I've been on the hunt for an oval tray to use in the center of my table.  My sister-in-law spotted this one the other day and the hunt was over.  I love the patina and the mixture of metals.  Let's have some fun playing with it as we spruce up the table, shall we?


My backyard is also in a state of discombobulation, but that's another story for another day.
I was able to gather a bouquet of limelight hydrangeas out there this morning.
I am liking the cut crystal with the tray.  How about you?
You know those posts where they give you step by step directions for creating the perfectly pinworthy centerpiece vignette for your table?  Well, this is not one of those.  This is just little ole me mixing and matching with my garden flowers and thrift shop treasures.  



 Speaking of thrift shop treasures, I pulled a few dishes out of the cupboards.
That tiny tea cup had no saucer.  It's tiny price tag made me no longer care about missing saucers.
I like my table centerpiece vignettes to have a candle included.
Looking for something less predictable than a candlestick, I'm going to try using the tea cup.




 

I think that is the cozy glow I'm looking for.
That little snippet of hydrangea fell off while I was arranging them.
I'm good with leaving it on the tray.  What about you?
The goblet in the forefront was given to me by my Aunt Marge.
I was still in junior high when she gave them to my mom to save for "Kimmy" (as my family affectionately calls me :).  Aunt Marge said she thought I would appreciate them and she is right.  I kept them neatly packed in a box in my closet until my wedding day.  
She received them as a wedding gift.
She was 13 years older than my mom.  If my mom was still alive she would now be 90.  I'm too tired to do all of the math, but I think we can conclude that they are very old.
I'm just happy to have them.  
Good memories of my dear aunt.


 While it's true that most of my house, yard and office are in a major state of disarray, all's well at the table.  
Oh yes, the beauty of blogland... a wonderful place to come to escape reality from time to time ;-D.

Now I guess it's time to get back to reality and make some dinner to go on that table.  I'm thinking this  will be on the menu tonight.  It looks like a great way to use the tomatoes and basil I picked from the garden.

 



Thursday, July 10, 2014

A Sunset Cruise

After dinner last night we decided to take a little sunset cruise.
This would be Jaxson's first boat ride.
We were curious to see how he would like it.

 Grandpa was happy to have assistance with the captain's duties.

 Once we dropped anchor, he also experienced his first swim in the lake.  


Despite the bulky life vest, he seemed to take it all in stride.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 
 

Monday, July 7, 2014

New Couches


After what turned out to be a picture perfect holiday weekend, you'd think I'd have more exciting photos than a picture of my couch.
I believe I was so busy enjoying the moments that I never once picked up the camera.  I must say I loved having the 4th fall on a Friday.  How great to be able to carry  the festive summery feeling right into the weekend.  The other thing I loved was the absence of humidity we enjoyed throughout the weekend.  I think that's almost unheard of for a summer day in the south.  Let me just say that, at least for me, it was a blessed relief and reason enough to celebrate.
So we enjoyed time on the lake, in the lake, grilling, watching the fireworks, in the pool and a few walks were thrown in there too.

Now, about that couch.
After 15 years our family room love seats were showing their age.
Not to mention they were always way too short for my 6' husband and sons to sprawl out on comfortably.

Not too long ago Brett and I had some time to kill while waiting for the car to be serviced.  Spotting a new-to-me consignment shop I asked him to drop me off.  With no intentions of purchasing anything, I happened to spot this couch.  The colors were my home decor colors in a nutshell.  Not necessarily colors I see in the furniture stores today.  Since I don't want to re-decorate the whole room, I was keeping my fingers crossed that they would fit in with what I had.  A bit risky as they couldn't be returned.
We had to remove one end table to accommodate the new length.  Other than that, a perfect fit.  
Not only for the room, but for those 6' tall men too.
 

 Speaking of perfect fits, I'm playing around with photo sizes here today.  I usually choose the extra large size.  Today I'm trying large instead.  If you have any thoughts on the whole matter, please feel free to share them.



Thursday, July 3, 2014

Patriotic Touches in the Kitchen

 It seems we are going in many different directions here lately.
So, yesterday when I had some time at home, I couldn't resist the opportunity to do a bit of patriotic playing in the kitchen.


I don't do a lot of decorating for the 4th of July.
It seems that (weather permitting) we spend most of the day outdoors enjoying the lake, the bbq and the fireworks display.
However, we do congregate in the kitchen long enough to load our plates.  This year we will be eating in the kitchen as the patio is still under construction.
All good reasons for adding a bit of patriotic flair to the kitchen.
Don't you think?
This box of cookie cutters was something I had picked up at an antique shop years ago.
 
 
 I think I really should make cookies in these most American shapes.
Won't be this year though.
When my boys were in elementary school I was always a room mother.  I made cut-out sugar cookies for every possible holiday and occasion.  It was time consuming , yet fun, to unleash some creativity in this way.
I hope when my grandson is old enough to appreciate it I can muster up the energy to make some for him.
 
These old red plastic cookie cutters bring back fond childhood memories.  I have a huge collection.  I don't find them to be the easiest to use.  I just like to look at them from time to time.  This flag had to come out for the occasion.

 
 As long as you're here won't you stay for a cookie?
One is just about to come from the oven as we speak and it is very low in calories too ;-).

Wishing my American readers a Happy & Safe Fourth of July tomorrow.  Wishing all of my readers everywhere a safe and happy weekend.

 ***
 

Monday, June 30, 2014

Strolling Through The Garden in Late June

 From a distance the hibiscus appears to be white.
Up close the true colors are revealed and they are too beautiful to be missed. 
 I believe this is one of the biggest rewards of blogging... taking the time to capture the moments and appreciating the beauty of those moments.

 Prior to blogging I took very few pictures of the garden and if I did take them, it was a distance shot of the entire plant which didn't do much to capture the true beauty of each individual blossom.
My goodness, I was missing a lot.
Nature really is amazing.

I brought the camera with me this morning as I made my way around the garden.
Thought I would share what's blooming here on this last day of June.


Although these two hydrangeas are the same variety, they bloom in slightly different shades.  They are supposed to be the pink and white combo.  

 The crape myrtles are just coming into bloom.
So pretty against the blue sky this morning.


The pink calla lilies are coming up white this year  and...

this one wasn't planted... at least not by me : -)...
and look what color it is.
Nature also keep us on our toes.  Our best laid plans can be changed at any time it seems.  While I didn't particularly want a lily growing here, it's just too pretty to remove, so here it will stay.
I think calla lilies are so elegant.
Prior to getting married, I had a picture of a bride torn from a magazine.  She held a bouquet of white calla lilies and I thought that was perfection for a bridal bouquet.  When my own wedding came along I ended up with artificial flowers which my mom insisted were much more practical.  Go figure.

 

Tomatoes and more tomatoes.
This year we bought the biggest tomato plants we could find.
They cost more up front, but are already paying off with an early yield.  We've already had at least a half dozen and several more are ready to be picked.  Not bad for two plants.  We also planted a pear tomato plant which has begun producing.

 
Of course you can't have tomatoes without basil.
I started my basil from seed in the house this year.  
I had four plants originally, but two have disappeared.
There one day, gone the next.
Just another garden mystery, I guess.

Anything mysterious happening in your garden?
 
 

Saturday, June 28, 2014

A Little Blog Problem

 Because I prefer blog posts that include photos,
here you will find a baby ear of corn which came attached to "mama" corn.  In all my years of buying corn on the cob, this was a first and, therefore, photo worthy.  What does it have to do with my blog topic?  Not a thing.  It's just providing the photo matter for a rather boring post.

Here's the thing...
I think I made a (behind the scenes) mess of my blog and I'm hoping some of my tech savvy friends can help me out here.
The problem:  Recently I decided to delete the e-mail address I set up to go along with my blog.  A very hasty decision that seemed like a good idea at the time.  It wasn't that I didn't want an e-mail address available, I just didn't want to keep up with two of them.
So, I attached my main e-mail address to my blog.

Here's the problem...
Since doing so I am receiving failed delivery notices in my Spam after leaving comments on some blogs.
I'm sure this has to do with my change of e-mail, but I'm not quite sure what it means.  I'm wondering if this is happening to people who receive their comments through e-mail.  Perhaps their e-mail isn't recognizing my address change?

If anybody is able to offer insight into my mystery, I would be ever so grateful.
I tell ya, after six years of blogging, you would think I would be able to figure this out for myself.