decorating with dodi

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Tuesday, February 28, 2017

My Lucky Day

After a nice visit in Gainesville, we are home again and I have just a bit of time so I thought maybe we could move on to the next room in all of its "green:" glory!

This sign was one of the first wood signs I made. I used a dog-earred fence slat. I just cut it to size and glued the two pieces together. Then I used a dark stain, painted on the letters and found a gold horse shoe at HL for the "U". It still looked a little plain to me so I added a glittered shamrock for embellishment.

I seriously wish I could remember where I bought these "Bells of Ireland". I have wanted more for years and just can't find them any more.

I still use this banner that I made a number of years ago. I simply downloaded maps of Ireland (sorry but I don't remember where I found them), cut them into shape, cut out a bunch of hearts and distressed the edges and then folded them in half so they be 3 dimensional and glued them on into shamrock shapes. It was so simple but I still love it.

This room is pretty simple but I love the calming effect of all of the green-green is the new neutral! Stay tuned.

Monday, February 27, 2017


By now, if you are a follower of this blog, you probably know that autumn is by far my favorite season. But, this "spring" is not far behind-maybe because it really isn't spring. It is still winter but the weather around here for the last two weeks has been almost picture perfect!

We are having chilly nights so sleeping is comfortable and then 70s during the day. The skies are the most incredible blue and the clouds the most brilliant white.

So, to say that we had a fabulous weekend would still be an understatement...everything just fell into "perfect place". This was the weekend that we usually head down to the farm to pick strawberries. This year the boys weren't with us as they were camping with their dad and some BFFs from their Lakeland days. Hubby, daughter #3, Presley, her friend and I all headed out Saturday morning. The drive down is wonderful as we use back roads and go past so many beautiful horse farms and lakes.
As soon as we arrived, we started picking.

Yes, hubby is holding our box of strawberries. It was just so bright that I couldn't even see the screen on my phone...guess I'm lucky he even has a head!

No idea what she was doing...I didn't see this until I was editing. But, as I get older, I take what I get and am happy for it!

Of course, after we were done picking we just had to sample a few of the delicious goodies from the cafe-even though we were then heading off to lunch-life is short, eat dessert first! Lol  We tried the fresh strawberry shortcake and the strawberry ice cream sundae-my vote always goes for the shortcake!

They have several play areas for the kids but this one under this gorgeous tree is always our favorite. After the girls wore themselves out, we were on to Eustis and our favorite Mexican restaurant...and, lucky us, we got one of our favorite outdoor tables-who would want to be inside on a day like this?!

As we arrived in Eustis, it was pretty obvious that we had come on the same day as a huge outdoor festival. Again, we were lucky enough to find a bench right by the stage so we could enjoy the live music while we watched the girls on the playground with the beautiful water right in front! We really had to pull ourselves away to head home after a lovely afternoon!

The next day dawned just as beautiful and I began my "birthday week"-although I must admit this just might be one birthday that I would just as soon forget-although it doesn't sound like my family is going to let me do that!

My brother and sister-in-law arrived with this beautiful bouquet. I adore spring flowers! That may be my only regret about living where we do-we are just a bit too far south to grow these beauties. But, most flower markets now have them available right about the time for my birthday-I am a lucky girl!!

They also brought a wonderful meal and, of course, we had strawberry shortcake for dessert. And then, my brother and I tackled the last of the "forest" behind our house! I think we truly have enough cut back now that we will have NO vines or big, ugly leaves invading our yard for months to come.
And then, I got to make my wish list for all of the things I would like accomplished next weekend when everyone arrives to help me celebrate my next milestone. I am not much of a party girl and I really don't like being the center of attention. So, when they began inquiring what kind of a gift or celebration I might like, my answer was, and always will be, willing, helping hands. It is a win-win for all...I hope. I am actually getting excited about seeing everyone and all of the projects we may get'll be the first to see. Stay tuned.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Green With Envy

Somewhere in the midst of everything that is my life right now, I have found some time to take down Valentine's Day and get the St. Patrick's Day decor up. Now I did say "take down" not put away. My MO these many years has been to take whatever is coming down and begin moving it closer to the place where it will be stored for the next 12 months-be that the garage, family room closet or one of the guest room closets. That is a move I can do quickly and will get the ball rolling. If I don't do it that way, I may never take one holiday down and move on to the next because I fall in love with whatever may be up at the moment.

This set-up has worked for me-until now. For some reason, I am REALLY slow about now getting everything red back to their storage containers. The sun room is FULL of red, the first guest room looks like a war between pillows and artificial flowers and the other two are not far behind. At least the family room is a bit more organized but the large Rubbermaid containers are still out waiting to see what overflow they may need from the other rooms.

And so it goes. I am just moving so much slower these days and things that used to drive me crazy-hence, motivate me to action-no longer do and I can overlook so much more than I ever could.

I had lovely plans for this week but the we got an unexpected invitation for a wonderful dinner on Valentine's Day, an unexpected visit from daughter # 2 and four football games on Saturday. I am not complaining. I love all of these things and they certainly keep our lives interesting...I am just justifying why my St. Pat's decor hasn't been more forth-coming. lol It is hard to take pictures of green with so much red in the backgrounds.

In any case, I have the living room ready to show you. I DO love green. To me, it is such a calming color and the fact that it accompanies one of my favorite holidays can't hurt. Come on along for the start of the tour.

Here it is once again-the little flower pot leprechaun hat arrangement that the girls and I made oh so many years ago...and, that has just by chance become the NUMBER 1 hit on my blog. I think I've told you before but someone re-posted this on her site for children's crafts made from terra cotta pots and because she gave a link to my site, the number of hits it got-and still gets-is incredible. This time of year my stats go especially hay-wire!

I LOVE that old baluster so much. Daughter #1 gave it to me last year and if I can find a place to decorate with it, I will. Since it is green, it fits into most of my decor all year long.

I especially love it topped off with the vintage image daughter #2 gave me...I'm a lucky girl to have such generous daughters!

And now that I have this started, it is time to begin making plans for another Nana and Papa holiday weekend with the kids. It is coming fast-stay tuned!

Monday, February 13, 2017


What a wonderful weekend we had! It was Valentine's Weekend at Nana and Papa's and 2017 is now in the record books but will not be quickly forgotten. I must say, I don't have as many pictures as usual-somehow, things happened but by the time I realized they were, we were on to something else. I think I mentioned that our schedule was different this year and I guess it threw me off a bit!

In any case, a great time was had by all!

Because there is a lot of waiting for drying time on the candy hearts, we started on these right away. The kids are all getting really good at rolling dough and using cookie cutters so this was a no-brainer-plus, they got to test the flavors of the candies. I think we all agreed that the mint was our favorite and the cinnamon our least favorite. We also made orange, lemon and cherry this year. I usually head to WalMart for my flavorings for things like this because they have a much greater selection than any other stores around here.

After that, Hudson and Presley mixed up our cookie dough and while it was chilling, we had a bit of a snack outside. Presley decided she was going to skim the leaves off of the pool and I am never one to deny free I discovered why she was so anxious to do this on to come.

We went back inside for Presley to cut and decorate the cookies and just as we got them in the oven, Uncle Joel and Aunt Cyndi arrived and we were on to mug decorating.

Everyone put their own little twist on the design and they came out so pretty! I used the new Sharpie Oil pens and baked them much as I used to bake the ceramic ink paint-hope they hold up through some washings!

Aunt Cyndi brought along a Valentine pouch project so she and Presley sewed on that while Papa supervised.

Because dinner was a little later than usual, we kept it pretty simple this year. Our "nod" to the holiday was simply cutting heart shaped pepperoni for the pizza and heart shaped veggies for the salad. These kids are pretty healthy eaters so we also had several great salads from Fresh Market and a big bowl of steamed broccoli. Dessert was simple-strawberries and cream ice cream and our yummy cookies.

After dinner, we all got cozy in the family room and watched the movie RV. Several of the gang had never seen it and we all laughed like crazy. Then it was off to bed to get rested for our next busy day to come.

While I was getting breakfast ready, the rest of the crew was adding the "conversations" to our candy hearts.

Oh no...looks like these two are conspiring on their thoughts...guess I'd better edit those hearts! lol

Breakfast is ready. We had heart shaped pancakes, heart shaped bacon and fruit. Hopefully everyone filled up because the "big jobs" were yet to come.

We sat outside in the beautiful weather waiting for daughter #3 and her hubby to arrive and Presley's eagerness to skim the pool soon became evident!

She was going February. Yes, we have had some exceptionally warm days this winter but the nights still get chilly and this pool is 18' X 36' so it takes a long time time for the sun to work its magic on the cold water. But, she was not to be deterred and... she went. She didn't stay in too, too longer but it sure was a lot longer than I would have made it!

And then Jennie and Elton arrived. This is second Sunday-a new event that Jen has initiated to come over and help Nana and Papa with some of our heavier duty kind of chores-things we really shouldn't be attempting any more-but they know we will if this doesn't happen kind of thing. In any case, we are encouraged to come up with a list of chores each month and the whole gang gets busy and then Jen ends the afternoon with a wonderful, home cooked meal-every month is different and it seems like each month is better than the last! She makes all sorts of new recipes-things I would like to try but probably won't because they either take too long or they use too many pots-lol.

This month, we needed a new latch and lock on our gate into the back field-and my brother and Hudson took care of that for us. Then, since Jim and I had done such a good job clearing out back, I asked Elton to bring his chain saw to help us tackle some of the trees that were just too big to do by hand-and tackle we did! We all felt like Paul Bunyon as those trees hit the ground and the kids were huge helps in cutting up the remnants and dragging them back into the woods. I think I have mentioned that even though we don't own this property, it will probably always be undeveloped and the owner has given us permission to cut it back away from the 308' we have running along there. It just makes our job of yard maintenance so much easier.

There were some vines wrapping around these trees and literally snaking up into our huge live oaks that were as big around as my arms. We cut them to a reasonable length and tried to pull them out of the trees but they snaked so far that even with all of us swinging on them-while doing the Tarzan yell I might add-they wouldn't come down so I guess we will just have to wait for them to shrivel before we try pulling again!

And just when they thought they were done, my son-in-law backed up his truck and we loaded it with all of the remnants of our much loved swing set-and that is another story for another post-sob, sob-and many, many wood pallets from an old deck. It was a job but that end of the yard looks so nice now that it is gone!

Everyones' hard work got rewarded with a wonderful meal and then too soon, everyone was headed home to get ready for their new week. My husband is nothing if not consistent-every time we have had a weekend with lots of company like this, we no sooner make it into the house after saying good-bye and he is saying how much he misses everyone. Guess it's a good thing that St. Pat's is right around the corner as well as another second Sunday-stay tuned.