Wednesday, November 24, 2010


Happy Thanksgiving!

We celebrated Thanksgiving on Sunday with our 2 daughters and their families.  Jessica and her family were going to be hosting her in laws from Kansas and wouldn't be able to join us on Thursday, and Laura and her family have to leave and go to his folks in the afternoon.  By this arrangement we could all be together and that is something I am very thankful for!
A very casual Thanksgiving table.  But, hey, we did eat in the dining room.  

I set the kitchen table with brown paper and hats for our little pilgrims to wear.  Elizabeth had fun drawing turkeys all over the table.  They were so cute, and I am sorry I neglected to get a shot of her handiwork.  By the time I remembered, they had eaten supper and there were a few spills here and there.  It was a cute table for them, so it will probably be a new tradition.
Jessica reading to some cute pilgrims.
It was an absolutely beautiful day here on Sunday ~ hot actually.  But the leaves are coming down and we had fun making this...does anyone remember making these when you were young?  My friends and I would spend our recess time making leaf houses all around the playground.  We had so much fun making floor plans and lots of hallways!  Our kids had fun too, the boys ended up running through the walls ~ no surprise there!
And last,  but not least we took the photo for our annual Christmas card.  I love the one from last year which is my blog header, and I wanted the same spot again this year, but the tree is not decorated yet and the kids didn't have their Christmas outfits on either.  So, here is the gang, we gave up worrying if the littles were looking or not!
I hope that everyone has a blessed Thanksgiving with the ones they love.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Yummy Pumpkin Dip

This is an easy dip and just tastes like fall to me.  I'm sure you don't need one more thing to add to Thanksgiving dinner, but if you you are.

Pumpkin Dip
15 oz can of pumpkin
8 oz of cream cheese - softened
1/2 C brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
pinch of cloves
1 1/2 T orange juice

Mix well, I use a hand mixer and serve with pepparkakors. {or ginger snaps}  I am from MN and we call them pepparkakors,  in TX I buy them at World Market and the brand is Nyakers.  So thin and crispy.  Yum!!  {My friend's mother is Swedish and makes homemade Pepparkakors and they are the BEST.  They involve a cookie press and a few other steps so I haven't attempted them yet.  The ones from WM are almost as good.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Our Home ~ Living Room

I am joining in with Kim again on her newly named party, Boring to Better. I am going to finish showing the entry to our home, which is the living room. When you open the front door, you step into our living room. It's not the layout that I prefer, but you deal with what you have. In a perfect world this room would hold a beautiful, shiny black baby grand. But, even though my girls and I all took piano lessons for many years none of us still really play. Kind of silly to buy one just for show, especially when I have a lot of furniture!

The room has lovely high ceilings, but is pretty small. Again, this is the previous owners "stuff", included to show the paint colors and tile colors. We removed the 2"blinds and swags on this window and installed plantation shutters.
A really nice fireplace surround.
This shot looks down the hall to our library and guest bath and room. It's a long skinny hall.
Back to the front door and the pretty trim around it.
This shot was taken right after we moved in, with the painting completed, {same yellow and white as the staircase} but not the window treatments. I also included it so you could see the tile on the fireplace. It's not a very big change, but I just didn't like the tile and so had absolute black granite tile put in. This picture is with the old tile.

The fireplace painted a crisp white with black tile. I like it much better now.
A shot of our floating sofa. I tried to put a sofa table behind it, but the room is just too small.
Some fun little red polka dotted china sits on a shelf. I found it in an antique store and I am always looking for more pieces.

Thank you Kim for hosting this fun party. I love checking out all of the transformations. I imagine from here on out there will be a lot of Christmas posts and I can't wait. It's such a special time of the year and there are so many good ideas in blogland! I tend to do the same thing over and over, I am pretty much a tradionalist ~ but it's so fun to see everyone else's ideas.

Please check out Savvy Southern Style for more ideas.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Halloween Visitors

I spy with my little eye.....Alice in Wonderland!!
I was so glad that Halloween fell on a Sunday this year. Every year since we moved here to Texas to be near the kids, they have come to "surprise" us at lunch time on Halloween. I love hearing them in the front yard getting their costumes on and trying to be quiet.

This year was going to be different I thought, because Elizabeth is in all day kindergarten. {and I didn't think Laura would take her out of school to come trick or treat at our house!} Thankfully I was spared for one more year and was visited by these adorable children.

Alice is very excited about her candy.
Ben aka Buzz is always excited about everything.
And yes, we have another Buzz. Cooper was a firefighter at his neighborhood party with his trusty Dalmatian Jackson. But if Ben is Buzz, so is Cooper, so he was a lucky boy and got 2 costumes.
Isn't this the cutest puppy ever?
A thankful grandma to have them all here one more year. I won't think about next year.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Dining Room

I am joining Kim at Savvy Southern Style for her before and after party once again. I like the new look it is giving me of my rooms, and I am loving finding more fun blogs and ideas! I have been in a decorating slump and would like to get out of it. Checking out some of the redos has given me some ideas. I don't anticipate any big doings around here until after the holidays, because Christmas is coming quickly and I don't like unfinished messes at that time. But I think we may have a project or 2 to tackle after that!

The dining room when we purchased our house looked like this. The same beige trim and paneling and dark red purplish walls.
Little beaded shades on the light and 2" blinds on the windows.
It has not been a dramatic change, but I do like it better now. Here you can see that the dining room is directly to your right when you come in the front door. We painted the ceiling, trim and paneling white, and the walls a bright gold.
We have had our dining room set forever...and I am not so in love with it anymore, but I will not be getting a new one in this house. We want to build a house in a few years, and I will be doing away with a formal dining room at that time. So, it doesn't make sense to do anything drastic at this time. This still works beautifully for our holiday meals! {Otherwise we don't use it much which is why I won't have one anymore}
I bought this inexpensive little server for this corner and really like the extra space it gives me for my ever growing dish obsession. I collect tole trays and love this red one I found. It's the only red one I have and I think it's my favorite!
I included this picture to show you the windows. It was the change I loved the most and it's hard to get a good picture looking into the window. We added plantation shutters and I really like the difference they made. So crisp and really played up the pretty shape of the window.
There are a few things I would still like to do in there, for example a little bigger shades on the light would be better I think. That light is the only thing we kept in the room and I did change out the shades, but every time I see a picture of the shades I think they need to be bigger. What do you think?

I would also like to have some slipcovers made for the chairs. Maybe something with buttons on the back. We'll see.

Thanks for stopping by and please stop by Kim's for more before and afters.

{you can click on any picture to enlarge}

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Our Home ~ Staircase

Welcome to our home. I have decided to join Kim at Savvy Southern Style for her before and after party and of course will be showing pictures of our home. We bought this house 3 years ago, and did quite a bit of work in the beginning...but lately have hit a little slump in getting projects finished! When you take some pictures of rooms or areas in your house that you thought looked pretty good it's amazing to see how many things need a little tweaking! Every now and then you are surprised and things are just as you would like, but you know what I mean.Come on in!!

We don't have an entry hall in our home. When you come in the front door, the stairs are right in front of you. The before pictures today are of the home as we saw it when we made our offer. I am using them so you can see the wall and carpet colors. These are not in any way meant to critique the previous owner's "stuff".

All of the trim in the home was painted this taupey color. The walls AND ceilings were painted a lighter shade of the same color. I am not a beige person. I know some are, and I can enjoy it in their homes, but I need color.

And so the transformation began.
The stairs lead up to our pool table room. The little arch next to the clock leads to the family room.
We did keep this lantern. It fits in well with our stuff!
Now for the "after". All of the trim was painted white, semi gloss. The walls are butter yellow, and ceilings, which you can't see are almost white, with just a little yellow. It was really hard to figure out what to do with the curved wall. These pictures do work, although the one does stick out from the wall a bit.
We had the black and yellow carpet installed and had them make a rug for the front door of the same carpet.

The next transformation that the staircase gets is its annual Christmas decorating. But that's for another Wednesday!

Thanks for stopping by.

Please join Kim for more before and afters.