Friday, August 30, 2013

Pink Saturday

 This is the most gorgeous flower that I have seen lately! 
 It's a hibiscus flower!  It's a new variety that thrives here in Minnesota, or so I'm told.
 This past June, I was lucky enough to be invited to a friend's cabin in Gays Mill, Wisconsin.  He had just planted this hibiscus plant and I simply fell in love with it!
I'm a little skeptical about planting one here in our summer home in Minnesota.  I'm going to wait until next spring/summer if I will actually plant one.  First, I have to hear how it fare over the winter, since I'm told you don't have to bring it indoors...
Until then, I decided to kick back and enjoy the beautiful scenery of the apple valley that is Gays Mill.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Cupcake Baby Blanket

Nothing makes me happier than when I try something new and the accomplishment of a finished project!
When I found out that my Hubby's niece was expecting her third baby, I knew exactly what I was going to make for him or her.  First I needed to find out the sex of the baby, so that I could make my yarn color selection.
Months ago, I came across this baby blanket pattern called Cupcake on Pinterest.  I liked it so much, that I decided I was going to make it for the next baby that came along.
I only chose one main color for the pattern, but I think it would look absolutely great if I had used one color for the frosting and another color for the cupcake.  I just didn't think I would be patient enough to be switching yarns at the end of each row!!!
Now that I finished this cupcake blanket, I think I can make another one using two colors.
Yes. Any day now, a bouncing baby boy will make his appearance!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Thrifty Hunting

For the last 2-3 months on most weekends, I have enjoyed garage/estate/thrift saling so much !  I have discovered that I'm pretty good at it too.  Not only do I find treasures, but I also get to meet nice and very interesting people, like I did with Carol.  Carol teaches a class on how to make your own fresh mozzarella cheese and yogurt at one of the local community centers.  I am signing up to take this class from her in October. 
I'm working on bringing a feminine touch to our home here in Minnesota with things I like and make me happy.
This is my dresser in our bedroom and above it is a bookshelf, which I have removed all of the books (except for one) and made it my own.
Thank God for very generous relatives! 
Laura, Hubby's cousin, has been cleaning out her house, and I happen to be the very lucky and grateful recipient!  Thank you Laura!
 It amazes me how all of these three pieces go together.  The radio belonged to her Dad.
 I fell in love with this clock, bunny and tiny little frame!

 I have a love for purses, mostly leather, but recently I have developed a love for vintage purses.  I found this one at an antique store.  It was my lucky day.  The store was running a 50% of discount at this one booth.  Mine!!!
 Now this purse, I found at an estate sale.  It was the last day for this sale, and I came home with it for a mere $1.  Both purses were made in Japan.

The light tan basket/bag has been my summer schlepping bag, or as I call it "my Birkin Bag"!  It has leather handles and it was only $1.
The small dark basket on the top shelf will become my sewing basket.
I see I have more space on the top shelf...which means...I just have to continue hunting for special treasures!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Ramblin' Red

 Rosa 'Ramblin' Red
The special feature of this climbing rose bush is that it's a repeat bloomer throughout the summer.
 Early this morning I went out and finally got a chance to plant our very first Ramblin' Red climbing rose bush.
Hubby and I decided that the best place to plant it would be on the south side of the house (garage wall) where it would get full sun. 
We first found the trellis in the basement while cleaning it out, and that's when we both decided that it would be great for a rose bush. 
I wonder if Hubby's Dad made it?
I can't wait for next summer to see how big it gets.
Note to self: get mulch!!!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Frilly Knit Scarf

I was lucky enough to received some amazing yarn from my sister-in-law Jan!  Thank you Jan!  I went through her stash of yarn and picked/selected most of her leftover wonderful yarn!
With one skein of yarn I made the following frilly knitted scarf.
 Last winter I saw how popular this scarf was since so many ladies were wearing them.  I thought that it would be so difficult to make one.  I found a pattern on Ravelry, and then went on YouTube to watch a tutorial on making one.
 It wasn't hard at all, but just a little awkward on handling the needles and yarn as you knit.  It took me about 3 days to get it done while watching some evening TV.
Jack says, "Hi!"
Here's my little guy trying to be so helpful while mamma takes pics!  I simply adore him!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013


 Last Sunday, I was at our local farmers market and these tomatoes grabbed my attention!  They looked so good and couldn't resist their blemished free red color! 
They were so delicious, too!!!
 Hubby planted three tomato plants in our flower garden back in early May.  So far so good!  We have tomatoes on the vine and can't wait for them to be ready for picking!
 Last year, Hubby didn't have very good luck with our tomato plants.  He planted them in pots and took really good care of them, and we are hoping this year we'll have great results.
 I actually can't wait for the end of the tomato season, so that I can have green tomatoes for Fried Green Tomatoes!  They're so good!
 I simply can't get over as to how perfect these tomatoes were!
This picture shows as if our tomato plants are pretty choked up/crowded by the other plants, but that's not the case.  The phlox and daylilies are almost done for the season, and I make sure the garden is weed free and the tomato plants have plenty of room for growth!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Summer Crochet Afghan

At the beginning of this year, after all of the retirement/Thanksgiving/Christmas hoopla, I was like now what!?! 
So I decided to give myself some adjustment time to get used to the idea that from now on, I'm a free woman...LOL!!!
I would get up late, have my coffee and actually enjoy it while it was still hot.  Read the paper and discuss topics of interest with Hubby.  I started going for walks or bike rides with Jack at any time of day.  I actually started to enjoy exercising on the elliptical machine (or the killer machine as I call it) at the rec center; or if it was a nice sunny warm day, go to the pool and sunbathe, read or actually get in the pool.  And most importantly, take sweet afternoon naps and decompress.
But my busy hands/fingers needed something constructive to do as well while watching TV.  So while I was following the circus of Jodi Arias' trial (she-devil) and couldn't stop watching, I started to crochet a light summer afghan for my summer stay in Minnesota.
 I chose a light airy yarn in this green color for our bedroom here in our summer home.
 I also wanted an easy pattern I could follow without having to constantly check count and stitches.  It turn out really nice, if I may say so myself, and it is perfect to drape over while taking an afternoon nap or reading in bed when it gets chilly here.
This is Jack on my lap while I was working on the afghan letting me know it was time to stop whatever I was doing, and it was time for HIM and some well deserved love!!!  I simply adore Jack!

Monday, August 12, 2013


Yesterday morning, Jack (our tiny Chihuahua) and I went to our local Farmers Market here in Golden Valley.  It was a beautiful and sunny, and of course, Jack was a sensation!  He is so good in crowds! pic of him!
We came to this flower stand and I could not resist getting these 2 beautiful and stunning sunflowers!  I love sunflowers!!!
The sunflower is so strong and vibrant!
Sunflowers make me feel so happy!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Summer Sunflower

Like a single
on a warm sunny day
There's an exuberance brilliance
in a
~Author Unknown

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Flowers by Tom

Yesterday afternoon, Hubby went out and cut some phlox from our flower garden, and made this gorgeous impressive flower arrangement!
 Phlox is a perennial and it has been blooming for the past several weeks.
 Hubby added a couple of lilies for a pop of color, and some fern leaves as well!
 These phlox come in several shades of pinks.
 The phlox have a sweet and soft fragrance and our home smells divine.
Thank you Tom for the beautiful bouquet!
The picnic table was handmade by Tom's grandfather.  Grandpa Ohlson did not use nails!  We decided that it would look great in our dining area. 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Thrifty Find

I enjoy garage saling
Always looking for nifty thrifty things and good prices!
 I found this beautiful filet crochet table runner or dresser scarf at a local garage sale for $1!!!
It was very stained, but in great condition.  It didn't have a price tag and I asked how much she wanted for it.  She said to make her an offer, and I blurted out, "One dollar!"  I didn't think she would, but she accepted my offer.
I came home and immediately put it to soak in hot water mixed with bleach and dish soap.  I let it soaked for about an hour and then rinsed it.  It came out so clean.  It does have 2 tiny itty bitty rust stains spots, but I'm the only one who can spot them!
I can't believe someone took so much time to make this, to be discarded so easily.  Well, I surely am treasuring it! 

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Crochet Edging for Table Runner

I can't just watch TV and sit there while doing nothing! 
Since I was not able to bring any of my stamping/art supplies with me here to MN, I have turned to crochet.
 While going through my late mother-in-law's craft/sewing things, I came across this piece of leftover fabric.  I kept thinking what can I do with it...since I can't leave anything alone.  Cousin Laura suggested making a table runner with it.  Great idea!
So the most simple thing to do was to add a crochet edging, and VOILA!
The pattern on the crochet edge is called Shell Path Edging.  That last row of the edge is not exactly the same as the pattern.  I took liberties and tweaked it!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Garden Inspiration

One weekend while garage saling, Laura (Hubby's cuz) and I came across this gorgeous antique stove!
We fell in love with it!!!
This stove belonged to the owner's mother.  Her nephew, who is now the owner of the farm back in Wisconsin where she grew up, asked the family if anyone was interested in having it; and she was the only who wanted it!
The Lady of this treasure is an avid gardener.  I love how she uses kitchen pots as planters.  I wish I had taken pictures of her garden.  It is impressive!
Now Laura and I are trying to find one for our garden! 
Laura kept a secret from me.  She has been buying/collecting enameled kitchen pots for her garden!  Shocking!!!  I don't know if we should go garage saling together anymore.  Nah!...We will just have to see who's best at spotting treasures (junk) for our garden!!! 

Saturday, August 3, 2013


The very first time I saw a peony, I thought it was a rose.  My father-in-law corrected me and told me all about them. :-) 
 I love love love peonies! 
They're so beautiful and fragrant.
   These peonies are from my mother-in-law's garden, now our garden.  You see, Hubby and I summer in his childhood home (now our home).
  The peony plants are so old.  Hubby helped me divide them this year. 
 I just wish that peonies would bloom throughout the summer...sigh!
Phoebe loves them too!