Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Bloomin Tuesday!

Please visit Jean for more Bloomin Tuesday posts!

The pretty pink flower down below just appeared one day in my pot of Geraniums! Does anyone know what it is? It seems to open in the day and close up in the afternoon.

The Geraniums are still going strong - gotta do more of these next year!

This is a potato plant blossom - soon there will be potatoes to dig up again (Yukon Golds)

My one Cana that decided to bloom last week. None of the other have bloomed at all this summer. I think we didn't get enough rain for them.

A couple of my roses have one or two blossoms on them again. This is a Cecile Brunner that I have climbing over our barn (well it's a big storage shed that looks like a barn!)

I thought I'd end with my crazy watermelon. This was planted in April and about a month ago I got the beginning of this watermelon. I'm sure the days are too cool now for it to get bigger. I don't know why it took so long!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Organizing Magazine Articles

Take a look at the Homemakers Mondays site to read others' posts about homemaking.

(Edited to add: I'm not sure she's having it this Monday as she's had a death in the family but I had this post ready to go. You can check out past Homemaker's Mondays if today isn't up)

This will be a repeat for those of you who read my other blog. But I thought I'd post about this again as I've been using this system for a while now and it's working well for me (plus I have new readers who might be able to use it).

What do yo do with all those magazine articles that you tear out and want to keep for future reference?

I organize mine into file folders. That way when I need to look for something I don't have to sift through a stack of magazine clippings!

I keep my currently read magazines in the front, also a small pair of scissors for just cutting out stuff. I keep the bin on my nightstand because I usually look at magazines before I go to bed. I'm usually to sleepy to read a book - all I can manage is to look at pretty pictures for about 10-15 minutes and then I'm out like a light! Books are for during the day when I can concentrate on what I'm reading.

I bought that bin last year at TJ Maxx and you certainly don't need one to organize your magazine clippings this way. You could use a large accordian file, you could use a cloth bag, you could use a box (you can wrap the outside with scrapbook paper, wallpaper or giftwrap paper, stickers, use your creativity!) Nor do you need toile file folders! But pretty file folders are very inexpensive these days and I find that it makes keeping things organize just a bit more enjoyable.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Needs Versus Wants

Lyn left a comment last week that really resonated with me! Here's what she said:

Frugality due to necessity is how we live, although even if we were in a better position, I would always live frugally. I really think it's wrong not to when there are so many in need in this world. Much of my frugal living comes down to many things we don't do (although there's a lot I do) - we don't vacation, we stay home instead of wasting precious gas. I try to stay out of stores and don't even go to thrift stores or garage sales.
Spending to me is still spending and I'm always tempted, so I stay away. We focus on paying the bills and taking care of what we already have. There's really not much we need. It's lack of contentment that gets many into trouble. I'm not perfect but I really work on this and I'm able to be home full-time while living on a smaller income. I'm grateful for that.

She makes so many good points! Know your needs from your wants and decide if buying a want is really the best use of your money in these uncertain times. That's something I struggle with all the time. Do I buy that fabulous dish that sets my heart a flutter or do I save that money. Should I donate that money instead? Sometimes buying the thing wins (90% of the time) - I'm by no means perfect! Then I always ask myself "how many dishes/linens/fabric/insert your gazingus pin- do I really need?"

I love decorating! How many times do I need to re-do a room that's perfectly fine (even if I do it on a budget)? Why am I re-doing it? Am I bored and need something to do or discontent? Do I think a new look would make me happier (sometimes it does)?

Believe me, I've painted my kitchen at least 7 times in 10 years, so I am in no way saying it's something that shouldn't happen. I'm all about believing that your home is a reflection of you. Sometimes I sit in my living room and think how much I enjoy the way it looks! It does make me happy! I want a pretty home. I just think I need to be honest with myself about why I do some of these things. And if it's cause I need a "project" to keep me busy, well...at least I know the truth of why I'm spending my money and that's important! Or maybe I've changed and my house/that room is no longer "me" and needs to be changed? I don't know....I don't have it all together....I just spent $5 on a yard of toile that I have no use for, but I loved it and one day I will use it! ....and I feel guilty. We could use that money on so many other things(nothing essential like food or mortgage). Ugh! Do you have a headache yet? ~smile

The best way to save money is not to spend it in the first place.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Show & Tell Friday!

Thanks for all your kind comments about my little black hutch! I love hydrangeas and I made sure to plant a number of different varieties when we moved into this house. If they weren't such water guzzlers I'd have the house just surrounded by them - I can't think of anything prettier (except to include lots of roses as well)!

Show and Tell

I wanted to add a little fall to my kitchen but I really don't have a lot of counter space. Unfortunately, I need my counter space for essentials and meal preparation! I like the plates I already have hanging on the walls and didn't want to change them. So I thought I'd add some of my Johnson Brothers "The Friendly Village" plates on top of my cabinets.

This is an old picture where I showed that I painted the inside of my cabinets, but you can see the "before" soup tureens. Below are the "afters".

I think that's all I'll do in this room. I do more Christmas decorating than fall decorating anyway.

So far, all I've done in the living room is to add this big candle and change my summer pillows back to my beloved red toile! I missed all my toile!

I've had this candle for three years! The candle holder I purchased at Target at an end of season clearance. I think I got the candle either at Pier 1 or Target also at the end of season clearance. That's really one of my best budget decorating tips. Buy this year for next. I'm planning on being at Hobby Lobby and Target the day after Halloween to buy some things for next year!

The first year I had it I set the candle in some fall potpourri. The second year I think I did acorns, and this year I just twined an acorn garland around the base. Kelli set one of her candles in popcorn! I thought that was such a cute idea!

For other Show and Tell Friday posts please visit Kelli at her fabulous blog

There's No Place Like Home

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Aaah Autumn!

It was a lovely 52 degrees this morning! I was cold last night and actually had to sleep with the comforter over me and not just a sheet! I can't tell you how thrilled I am that it's finally fall (although the afternoons are still pretty warm -in the 80's).

I always feel more energized in the fall! Do you spring clean or fall clean? I really do more in fall since in the spring I'm busy with the veggie garden and all the other yardwork. I guess I'm getting ready for lovely cozy days inside - nesting.

This week I've been mostly working on my dining room. I removed this corner hutch. Some of you may remember that I added some appliques to the corners and on the bottom last year. Well I pried those off! I'm donating that cabinet to the Goodwill and I know I can re-use those appliques somewhere else. Someone can have the fun of repainting that cabinet!

I moved my little black hutch over to this spot and decorated the top with things that I already had on hand.

The hydrangeas I picked from my garden this week. I hung them upside down for a few days in my garage. But they'll really dry just where they are.

I truly love the burnt oranges and red of fall, but autumn does have to be pumpkin orange! There are plenty of other fall colors out there. As a matter of fact, I was at Target yesterday and noticed that they had green, gold and brown pumpkins! They had some really cute Halloween decorations too!

The leaf plate came from Wal-Mart. I haven't been in Wal-Mart in years! I went to buy some fabric for my dining room (I only need about a yard) and the fabric section was gone!! When did that happen? The whole store looks so different!

I may change the back paper on that hutch. I found a whole bunch of Waverly wallpaper at Big Lots last week for $1.60!

It's a red houndstooth. I think I may use it on my living room bookcases if I don't use it in that hutch. I'm thinking it may be too dark for the black hutch but good for the white bookcases?

I may not be completely done with the dining room by Friday as I need some fabric to finish it. But I'll look through my stash one more time, maybe I missed something (it's possible) or maybe I have something I can repurpose! As always, thanks so much for dropping by!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Bloomin Tuesday!

Please visit Jean http://msgreenthumbjean.blogspot.com/ for more Bloomin Tuesday posts!

This daisy just opened up in the past few days!

Pampas Grass along the back border.

Yellow and orange mums in the china bed.

The sunflowers are trying to eek out a few more blossoms!

This is one of those azaleas that bloom spring and fall. It's trying!

The last of the tomatoes....sigh!

I hope you enjoyed seeing some of what's growing in my garden! I've been working on my dining room this week (had to paint because we had french doors installed last year). I don't enjoy painting walls like I used to! I have a few more fall touches to share tomorrow. Thanks for stopping by, I appreciate!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

More Pumpkin Fun & Awards

This little white pumpkin has some pretty fall leaf stickers all around the top.

This is a pumpkin I did last year. I just used some scraps of ribbon and scrap fabric for the leaves.

This is also from last year. I just took little terracotta pots and painted them. Then I used stick on letters. You could do three pots that spell "boo", or "eek", or "harvest", "home", you can spell out tons of things! Then I just set the pumpkins on top.


Thank you, thank you to three wonderful ladies for the following awards. I'm so honored to have received these awards!!!

Thank you Sheila!

Thank you Sally!

Thank you Jen!

Tomorrow is Bloomin Tuesday! Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

More Cost Cutting Tips

This has been quite a week! Lehman's, AIG, another bank failure (Ameribank) & government bailouts. I've never watched so much programming on the financial news networks before! I think that even if you're in a good financial position, it would be good to institute some cost cutting measures. There will be many people in need in the times to come. Cutting back on some things to save money will allow you to help others even if you don't really need to. Also, please remember that a lot of people are already having a hard time feeding not just themselves but their pets. Most food banks are happy to take donations of pet food.


  1. Cheryl (Copper's Wife) said that her Coinstar machine gives the option of getting an Amazon GC. Amazon has everything so that's a good way to use that change. I checked mine (at Kroger) and I could only donate or cash out.

  2. Chris suggests using empty glass jars with lids to store leftovers etc. Recycle - Reuse!

  3. Paula gave a recipe for toothpowder - equal amounts of sea salt, baking soda, a little ground sage (for teeth whitening). She also said you could use peppermint. She keeps this in a recycled glass spice jar, wets her toothbrush and sprinkles on the powder.

  4. Jen (Fiddle Dee Dee) packs her husband's lunch (leftovers) before they eat dinner. I do the same thing. If I want enough for lunch the next day I have to put it away before we eat. If it's there it gets eaten, if it's not there nobody misses it!

  5. Buy a cheaper brand of coffee. Save the better stuff for weekends or special events.

  6. Use the Pumpkin Spice creamers (both brands have their variety) instead of getting Pumpkin Spice Lattes at Starbucks. It's not exactly the same, but comes close and you can save the Lattes as a treat. There were copykat recipes out there when they first came out with this coffee. All I remember is that you used real canned pumpkin. If you Google "homemade pumpkin spice latte" you'll get all kinds of recipes.

  7. Use less dishwasher detergent, liquid dish soap, laundry soap than recommended. Decrease it little by little until you get to the point where you're not happy with it and then take it back up a notch.

  8. You can freeze milk, cheese, and butter. Buy it when it's on sale. I buy the grated cheese when it's on sale and just throw it in the freezer. Same with butter. The gallon milk jugs will expand a bit but I've never had one pop open. You can open them before freezing and remove a bit so there's room for expansion.

  9. Use cloth napkins instead of paper. You can make your own out of old sheets etc. We use ours all day unless they're really messy.

  10. I turn off the oven about 10 min before the food is done. The trapped heat it still cooking the food and I'm using less electricity.

  11. Learn to maintain your things to make them last longer.

  12. Do not buy things for which you can't pay cash!

  13. It doesn't take money to have a lovely house. Cleaning your house, moving things around, using your creativity and decluttering go along way to making your home look great.

For more tips I'd like to recommend Brenda 's Recession Ponderings at http://coffeeteabooksandme.blogspot.com/ . Just scroll down her sidebar on the right until you get to that topic heading.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Show & Tell Friday!

Show and Tell

For Show & Tell I thought I'd share one of my favorite prints. I got this years ago and I just love what it says.

I also love the soft watercolor roses!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone! I'll be back on Sunday with more money saving tips left by readers and a few that I do.

For other Show and Tell Friday posts please visit Kelli at http://kellishouse.blogspot.com/