Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Displaying kids art.....

If you look closely at the photos in my last post, you will see this small cabinet
sitting on the bottom shelf in our great room.....


This pretty little cabinet holds special treasures.....
my children's 3D art made in school over the years....

You know, those pinch pots and clay animals.....


including cute little owls!

Besides making your little artists feel super special, showing
your special collection in a pretty cabinet is a great way
to personalize your home! My cabinet happens to be a new
reproduction {made to look old} but I see lots of small
cabinets at antiques stores and flea markets that could also
make a great "gallery space"!

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Sunday, September 25, 2011

Stylin my junk.....

First, let's address the elephant in the room.....
To all those named and/or who commented as 'anonymous' that I 
offended when I posted the Toby Keith video, I am sorry....
This is my blog and technically I have the right to post whatever I darn well please.

If for some reason it offends you to know that I am a 'fiscal conservative'
{the words I am assuming offended you}, you don't have to come
here, and I am ok with that.  It's a free country.

If for some reason you were offended by my use of capitalization, I am also
sorry......if you stick around long enough you will learn
that I tend to over capitalize, under-punctuate, italicize when it "feels right", bold for emphasis,
and commit other random acts
of grammatical errors on a regular basis.

I am who I am and felt inspired to share a video, of a song
that I was totally digging at that moment.  Will I probably do it again?
Heck yea!  'Cause I am not one to play it safe, hide behind the 'neutral' zone on
MY blog {oops, there I go again!}.  I find there is integrity in honesty and 
because I am a big girl, I can take the consequences.  It's not as if
I am selling anything here.  I don't for one minute take for granted those
who come here to read my drivel and cheer on my decorating and family
adventures.  I love the opportunities and friendships that blogging
has brought into my life.  I truly feel blessed by those who offered their support,
and even those who were critical and even Martha Stewart!

So let's return to our regularly scheduled programming, shall we?



Bookshelves flank {hungry for steak anyone?}, each side of the fireplace in our great room.

Styling these can be tricky.

I am lucky 'cause I have LOTS of stuff, or 'junk' some might call it.



But my junk is meaningful to ME, things that belonged to my grandmother, old clocks 
set to the times my children were born {which was mentioned in the feature
on my collections in Flea Market Style magazine - on newsstands now},
books, decorative objects etc...


While the objects on these shelves have pretty much stayed the same since 
moving in five months ago, I did some 'tweaking' last week.

And then I remembered I was a blogger and took some
pictures!!!





And now I share them with you.......

In the not so distant future I would like to put some grass cloth 
wallpaper on the back of the bookshelves to give them some texture...



'cause I like the way the sea fans do that now.....

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Friday, September 23, 2011

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Made in America


Confession time......

I am a HUGE country music fan.....

I don't like what I see happening to my country.....
{yep, that's what I said}

I am what you might call a fiscal conservative and have a 
HUGE problem with our current 'leadership'......

I have been listening to this song from a great American,
Toby Keith and it reminds me of all the things I love about
America....the REAL America, like regular folks who
work hard for a living, want the government to get
out of their business, don't take our freedoms for granted,
love the values and principles this country was founded on.......

Take a listen and tell me if you don't get goose bumps.....

Ok, off my soap box for tonight.

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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

User friendly.....

Don't get me wrong....
I love the open shelving we added in our kitchen...
but I have struggled with how to style it.

You know, the perfect balance between looking photo worthy at all times,
accessibility for the kiddos to reach a cereal bowl and above all else, their
ability to put the dishes away when they empty the dishwasher
 {definitely not photo worthy}!  

Basically, my first go-round was proving unsuccessful in all above categories!


Last week, I spent some time tweaking my open kitchen shelves.  I moved
our basic/everyday bowls, sandwich plates etc...to a drawer below the upper cabinets for
easy access for my family.  Then, I brought in some of my brown transferware pieces, 
ironstone pitchers and most importantly, my wine glasses {cause momma can put
these babies right back where they go!}.


I like the mix of old sliver, glass, white ironstone and a bit of transferware -
it's a combination that has always seemed to work for me.


A special thank you to all of you who entered the Uber Chic giveaway.....
I read every single comment!  The winner of the giveaway is........
wait.......the "One Vintage Hag"!!!!!  For some reason, that name just cracks me up!
So, if you are "one vintage hag", please send me an email so I can get your pillow to you!

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Sunday, September 18, 2011

an 'uber chic' giveaway!


Remember the gorgeous bench I purchased at the 
Farm Chicks Antiques Show?

The transaction not only brought curvy, European goodness to my kitchen, it
also allowed me to meet the fantastic Dustin and Christian - of Uber Chic Home,
the vendors who sold me my bench!


For all of us who dream of finding treasures along the back roads
and in the barns of the European countryside, these
lucky dudes do just that! 

Besides selling their European collected treasures and U.S. industrial pieces
at shows like Farm Chicks 
and Alameda, they also operate a brick and mortar store
in Salt Lake City.  

They have recently added an online shop to their repertoire!



In celebration of their new venture, they have generously offered to
giveaway one of their grain sack pillows {valued at $200} to one
lucky Forever*Cottage reader who heads over to their website and visits their new online shop.
 Besides checking out the "hard-to-come-by in the
U.S." antiques, you can also read about their Euro shopping adventures on their blog!

To enter the giveaway just visit Uber Chic Home, then come back here and 
let me know what your favorite piece is.

I will close the comments at midnight PST on Tuesday.

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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Stylin'


When the kids go back to school, I always have lofty goals....

to hit the gym more than twice a week....

to tweak spaces in my home....

connect with friends.....

keep up with laundry....

enjoy the solitude of an empty home.....

I am pleased to say that with one week under our belt, I have been pretty successful!

I painted this chest of drawers {a $12 Goodwill find!) and restyled
the top using accessories I already have....
ahhh......life is good!

Come back on Friday for a fabulous giveaway!

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Monday, September 12, 2011

Just a pretty image.....


Happy Monday to you...
It is our first back to school Monday - yippee!

I found this image on Pintrest and love everything about it....
love the gallery wall, cause you know I can't ever hang just one picture,
love the mismatched frames,
love the restrained use of color....
love the vintage objects and art mixed with rather
contemporary chairs.....


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Sunday, September 11, 2011

God Bless America


God Bless the USA!

Ten years ago, I lay in a hospital being treated for a blood clot
that threatened not only my life but the life of the sweet baby
girl that was growing inside of me.

Doctors and nurses came and went from my room, stopping
to watch the coverage from New York, Pennsylvania
and Washington DC.......

Now ten years later, I have my health and a beautiful little girl. 
Today I think of all the families, the children who lost parents, 
spouses, sisters, brothers, sons and daughters that horrible
day in our American history.

I am grateful for our brave American men and women who have fought in the 
years since 9/11 for our nations freedom and liberty.

Where were you that day?


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Friday, September 9, 2011

Brass is back!

I have a confession.......
I am having a hard time finding my decorating mojo in this new house....

I kind of did the whole white/chippy/shappy thing in our Minnesota cottage
{which by the way can be seen in the recent Flea Market Style magazine!}....

Don't get me wrong, I love that look......but I am wanting to do something different,
get out of my comfort zone, to mix in
some contemporary elements that blend well with my existing 'stuff'.....how that will work, you ask......
 well, I am still trying to figure that one out!

Right now, I am loving BRASS!  Not the polished, fake kind....
but the real, patina'd brass.....gorgeous....


I found this 'vintage' brass coffee table on Craigslist and snapped it up for my living room -
which is currently in a yet-to-be styled state......It is the room that I 
intend to make "my room" and experiment with a new decorating style....
thus the lack of 'mojo' - the pressure to do something fabulous is paralyzing.......

I envision replacing the glass with a honed carrera marble top instead......



I have always had touches of brass in our homes.....like this lamp.....


And these vintage brass candle holders......


I even went with brass hardware in our kitchen.......


So.....what do you think of adding brass?

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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Oh Happy Day!


Did we have a fabulous summer?
YES!

Am I happy that TODAY is the first day of school?
YES!

Don't they look happy too?

All is right in my world today.....hope it is in yours too!

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Sunday, September 4, 2011

Teenagers and forest fires....I know, completely random, huh?


I've been m.i.a. lately, enjoying the important things in life.....
like getting the kids ready for school, which was made much easier this year
due to the fact that they wear uniforms to their Catholic school, phew!  A trip to
the shoe store for some new 'kicks' and we were set....well, besides the 
two page supply list {was it THAT long when we were in school?}.

But, most importantly we celebrated my big girl's 13th birthday!  I know what you
are thinking.....something along the lines of "she can't possibly have a 13 year old!".....ha!

I remember when she was small and thoughtful folks told me to enjoy those years as they 
went by so fast........well they weren't kidding!  And while I have a 13 year old, I can't possibly
be 13 years older than when I brought her home from the hospital in early September 1998!



We celebrated in central Oregon with my parents.  My big girl is a HUGE animal lover so we headed
up to the mountain to visit a Alaskan sled dog team that happens to have a new litter of puppies.

We learned ALOT from the musher Rachel Scidoruss, the first legally blind
musher to run the famous Ididarod sled dog race! Rachel wants her puppies to be handled and held alot as an important part of their initial training to perhaps one day become a member of
her team......my girls were happy to help with that task!


Mostly the puppies just slept while we were there!

We all enjoyed a ride with a sled dog team on a training sled, these dogs are strong!

It was a perfect way to celebrate her special birthday!


We headed home to Portland yesterday......and had quite a smoky ride.  It is forest fire
season here in the Northwest - so often this part of the country is known for all the rain
we receive in the winter months, but often people don't realize that summers are quite dry.

It is sad to see beautiful old growth forests burning.  We pulled over at a viewpoint yesterday so
I could take some photos and the girls could watch the airplanes drop bucket of 
water on the fire - extraordinarily dangerous work!


That's Mt. Washington behind the smoke plumes.  In the foreground is the remains of 
a forest fire that occurred about 6 years ago - lots of charred trees.

I will be back this week with some design posts!

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