This blog is basically just a collection of my "random thoughts". I must warn you, though. I have been told that "I write like I talk", so if you don't understand what you are reading... chances are, if you met me... I wouldn't make much sense to you! Feel free to comment if you care to. Or not. I'm good either way!

Monday, January 31, 2011

Just Listen

I have a friend that is going through a very rough time right now and I, as their friend, am having a hard time knowing what to say. It's hard for me to see my friend hurting and to hear their sad words.

I have learned through my training as a Stephen Minister, that all I can really do is listen to someone that is hurting. As much as I want to fix the problem for my friend, or give them advice, I could do them more harm by doing this.

But still.... this is MY friend and it breaks my heart to see them hurting and I want to FIX everything so that they can be happy again!! 

I almost feel guilty for being happy in my own life. But, I also know that I can not let myself "wallow" in my friend's unhappiness. I can not let them bring me down. I also know that my friend would never willingly do that to me.  

So, I will continue to listen to my friend and be as supportive as I can. I will also pray to God for peace and happiness for my friend, and for them to make "wise choices" during this difficult time. That's about all I can do.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Friday Finds #2

Last week, I went on a treasure hunt for bargains, again! I, of course, had my" Valentine's decorating theme" in mind for February, but was also on the lookout for anything that might catch my eye for future tablescapes or other holiday decorating.

I wanted to go to many places, but time and lack of money in my wallet prevented me from going to more than one place. I hadn't been to Goodwill in a couple of weeks, so I decided that I would go there and see what I could find! I love going there when I have time to really LOOK. ~ Know what I mean?

Here's what I came home with ---

I spotted this beautiful set of 7 dessert plates and really liked the colors! I picked them up and immediately thought about what sort of tablescape they would go well with. I couldn't really think of one, so I put the dishes back on the shelf. Then.... I picked them up again. Still thinking. I put them back down again, not being able to think of a "theme" that they would go with. Then.... I picked them up AGAIN and put them in my buggy. I decided to let them ride around in my buggy (Or "cart", depending on where you are from! Where I come from, they are called a "buggy"! **Smile**) Before I left the store... I decided that these were just too pretty to pass up! They were only $3.50.... and.... the best part is.... when I got to the register to pay for them.... they were 1/2 off!!! I was a happy girl, then! They only cost me $1.75!!! Wahooo!! They are from Pier 1, too! Ca-ching!!! Yes, there are 7 of them and I only need 6, so I will use the extra one as decoration above my kitchen cabinets! Yay! It was a little "chipped", anyway.

In the Christmas section, I found these cute little snowmen!!! They are actually candles, but who would actually lite them?? -- Not me!! I decided right away that they would be perfect with my "Winter Theme"! They were only $1.31 each and also... 1/2 off, because they were Christmas items!! Wahooo!!

Next, I found this pretty frame. It's really too small to put a photo into it, so my plan is to cut out a red heart and insert it in. It will be perfect then! It cost me $1.31. :)

Next, I couldn't pass up this beautiful vase! I plan to use it as part of my centerpiece for my tablescape. It was only $1.41.

This is what I plan to do with it!

Those were all of my finds at the Goodwill store. I think I did pretty good! I got all of these things for just under $6.00!! Not bad.

The week before, I did my "hunting" at Hobby Lobby and The Dollar Tree. I forgot to post the items that I bought, so here they are -----

I bought this frame on clearance for $3.40 at Hobby Lobby.

My plan is to do something like this with it. I think, since it is a deep frame, I will make a "puffed heart" out of red fabric and place it into the frame. I just have to find some fabric!

I bought these at Hobby Lobby for $2.99 (with 30% off -- $2.00). I plan to scatter them on my table as part of my centerpiece.

These are fake rose petals. They were $2.99 (with 30% off -- $2.00) at Hobby Lobby. They will also be scattered on my table and maybe my mantle, as well.

My next stop was to The Dollar Tree, which is right next door to Hobby Lobby! **Smile**
I picked up this cute little rosebud & vase for $1.00, there.

I couldn't pass up these votives!! Aqua Blue is my very favorite color and these screamed "Beach Theme" to me! So, I bought these to stash away for summer! They were all $1.00 each.

Total money spent on this day --- $11.40! YAY!!

This weekend, I will be transforming my "Winter Wonderland" theme (Click HERE & HERE to view) over to a "Love" theme for the month of February. I bought several items a couple of weeks ago (view those HERE) that I thought would look better if I changed them up a little, so I will also be working on those this weekend. I will hopefully post about my accomplishments, early next week. Be sure to come back then to see how it all turned out!

I am also going to TRY to link this blog up to some other blogs that are all about "bargain hunting". I'll keep you "posted" on whether or not that works out!

Roll With Changes

Dear faithful readers,
I am working on updating my blog for February. Please be patient as I decide on a background, pictures, and most of all... content!

Much LOVE to you all!
~ Becky

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

It's THAT time of year again!

Everyone seems to have the "blah's" right now. It seems like everyone has something to complain about! For some it's the weather. Other's it's that they don't "feel good" or that they don't have any money. For students, it's all the schoolwork that they have to do.

Don't misunderstand me. I'm not saying that I'm not participating in this "blah-ness", because I am just as guilty! I try to hide my "blah-ness", but it's there.

Last Monday (January 24), David told me that he had heard that it was supposed to be the most depressing day of the year. I said, "Why?". He said that he had heard that it was because of several factors coming together. One, it's a Monday and Monday's are the most depressing days anyway. Two, the weather is usually dark, cold & gloomy at this time of year. And three, for most people... their credit card bill comes in the mail about this time, and they are faced with the reality of how much they spent at Christmas. Other factors include: The fun of the holidays is over and theres nothing new to look forward to and for many they have now broken their New Year's resolutions.

I didn't "see" what David was talking about when he first told me, but I am beginning to realize that it's true. It seems that many are depressed or have the "blah's" right now. It may not have hit exactly on Monday, January 24th.... but it did HIT!

So..... What can we do to beat the blah's??

Let's focus on the POSTIVE things in our lives. Let's count our blessings and take note of all that God has been so gracious to give us. We ALL have so much to be thankful for and so many reasons to be HAPPY!!

And then, let's pray for those that are truly miserable or are clinically depressed, and have more than just the "blah's". There are many who... have lost jobs, are unhappy in their marriages, have recently lost loved ones (or are about to), are lonely, have life-threatening illnesses, .... the list goes on.

When I started writing this post, I was about to write about my own "blah-ness", but as the words have come... I have realized that I really have no reason to feel "blah". So, I am going to put on my HAPPY FACE and go foward with my day.

Hahaaa... I just realized that I think I remember that Oprah is doing a show today on "Happiness"! I think I'll be tuning in to watch!

~ Wishing you all much HAPPINESS today!

Monday, January 24, 2011

A Glimpse Into the Future

As my girls are getting older and they BOTH have boyfriends now, I am beginning to see what life is going to be like in the future for our little family. Our little family of FOUR  will someday grow to SIX!

Yesterday, I got a glimpse of what that will be like. Both of the boyfriends came over to watch football, hang out and to eat dinner with us. I love seeing my girls happy and the feeling of us all enjoying a day together.

Growing up as an only child, I always wished that I had brothers and sisters. Then, as I got older, that dreamed changed and my thoughts changed to thinking about getting married. It was then that I began to think that I was NOT going to have just one child! No sir! MY CHILD would have a sibling, no matter what!!!

I used to think that I wanted FOUR children, then that would insure me that I would have a big family! Then, after I got a little older, well..... that thought changed and I decided that THREE children would be the perfect number!

David and I married in 1985. Then, two years later.... God gave us our precious, Ashley. Our plan was to have another baby in three years. But, when that time came... we weren't ready! So, we waited another year and.... God gave us our precious, Miranda.

Not long after Miranda was born, our minds changed about having that "third" child! Two was plenty!! LOL!! We would be the perfect little family of FOUR. So, that is how it has been for 19 + years.

Now, of course, David and I are getting older and so are our girls. We can feel the next chapter of our lives approaching. The chapter where our girls meet someone, fall in love, get married and move out of the house. This is an exciting feeling, but also a tearful one at the same time.

Yesterday, we spent the day together.... all SIX of us. It was a nice feeling.

My mind kept thinking about the past and the future. We are still a family of FOUR at the moment, but will become a family of SIX before too long. Then..... what will our number be???? EIGHT?? TEN?? FOURTEEN??? 

WOW!! I can't wait!!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Blessed With Another Award!

Growing up, I can't recall receiving many awards. I did receive one in 3rd Grade for creative writing .... Hmmmmm.... Imagine that! **Smile**... And I think I received a trophy for the one year that I played softball for the church that I went to as a teen. But, that's about it.

I haven't won many awards as an adult, either... but, that's ok. I don't feel as if I've done anything to truly deserve one.

An award could be a trophy, a certificate, a plaque, a ribbon, a medal, a pin, or even a prize. Whatever kind is it.... when you are given one, it is an honor! Being the recipient of one shows that those that are watching you, listening to you, or reading your written words, like what you are doing and believe that you deserve recognition for it.

I truly am enjoying being a "Blogger" and it is an honor to know that someone enjoys reading my posts. Becca over at My Life is one of my blogging friends and has bestowed upon me this lovely award...

Thank you, Becca, for reading my blog and being a loyal "follower". It means a lot to know that you enjoy my writings!

Along with many of these fun blogging awards, there are rules to follow. With this particular one, the rules are:

1. Thank and link back to the blogger who gave me the award. --- Done! Thank you again, Becca!!
2. Share 7 things about myself.
3. Pass the award on to 5 other bloggers.

I have had the honor of receiving TWO other blogging awards recently. The rules of those awards were similar to this one. So that I don't repeat myself... and, so that you can learn more things about me.... you can go to those two blogs by clicking HERE and HERE.
Now, on to 7 NEW THINGS about me:

1) I try very hard to keep a neat and tidy desk at home, but the truth is... it's a cluttered MESS!! It's not that I like it that way. It just ends up that way! I do know where things are, even tho it may not look like I do!
2) You have to promise not to laugh at this one!! ---  I have a fleece blanket that is red that I love to cuddle with! It is a small, "throw-blanket" size and it is perfect for cuddling with! I love to snuggle up with it in the evenings, while watching TV and I also snuggle up to it when I go to bed at night. I even take it when we travel! I use it in the car and sleep with it. I haven't had the blanket very long... maybe two years. But, I love it!

3) Many of you know that I work at the preschool at my own church. What you may not know is that I am only a teaching assistant, at the moment. What you also may not know is that I used to be a lead teacher before I left the preschool for a better paying job. This was in 2006, right after my mom had her stroke. I needed to find a higher paying job so that I could help my mom pay her bills. I got a job as a church secretary for another church. I LOVED THAT JOB!! But, they had to let me go in September of 2009 due to the poor economy. So, I returned to the preschool but in an assistant position because there were no openings as a teacher. After a year now of "assisting", I REALLY want to return to teaching! I am praying that a position opens up for the Fall!

4) I was born in Columbus Georgia, but grew up in the suburbs, on the east side of Atlanta. I feel like I have come full circle, by returning to the Columbus area. I never thought I would live here again... but, here I am and I love it!

5) I never lived in a "house" until after David and I were married and bought our first home. I grew up living in apartments with my parents.

6) I do my best work in the morning hours. That is my favorite time to clean my house, exercise or get anything done. And I do it best when I am home ALONE! When my family is home, I am way too distracted!!

7) I have a collection of Bibles. I love them! I love to refer to different translations. My favorite translation is the NEW LIVING TRANSLATION. It is the one that I understand the most. I have several Bibles in this particular translation, but my favorite Bible is my LIFE APPLICATION one. It has notes at the bottom for almost every verse that explain the verses and help me to apply them to MY life, today.

So, there you go. Seven things about me that you most likely didn't know!

So now to pass this lovely award onto more styling blogs!! This is the hard part because there are so many that are deserving!! It's also hard because many of the bloggers that I follow do not accept awards, but I would at least like to recognize them! They are just a FEW of my favorite blogs that I go to and read each day! If you get the chance, pop on over and check them out!

1) Leigh over at Bloggeritaville (love that title!)
2) Jen over at Tatertots & Jello
3) Susan over at Between Naps on the Porch
4) Linda over at A La Carte
5) Beth over at The Stories of A 2 Z

Thank again Becca, for this fun award!!! ((HUGS))

Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Day Has Come

I have a friend .... well, he is actually the son of one of my very good friends, but I still call him my "friend" because I do consider him a friend.... who is leaving for Afghanistan, TODAY. In fact, he may have already left.

He is a young, 20 years old. I have known him since he was about 8 years old. His family was one of the first ones that we met when we moved here from Atlanta and when we began visiting their (... now ours, as well!) church.

My young friend joined the Georgia Army National Guard just a short couple of years ago. At that time, I didn't realize that guardsmen could be sent overseas, but I soon learned that I was wrong.

I have known that he was going to be going overseas for over a year now, but a year seemed sooooo far away from when we first learned the news. I knew the day would come, but I pushed it to the back of my brain so that I wouldn't think about it.

This past Sunday, at church, our pastor announced to the congregation that he would be leaving this week. I knew this, but it hadn't sunk in yet.... until I heard the words come out of my pastor's mouth and I saw the tears in her eyes. Then... the tears in my eyes started to flow!! The day that I had pushed to the back of my brain, had come.

I have been praying for my young friend since I learned this news. Praying for him to have peace from his nightmares about going and for God to protect him while he is there.

I have also been praying for his family - my friends. I know that they are worried and scared.

Over the past few months, my young friend has made some not-so-good decisions that have had us ALL praying for him even more!

Today, he is HEAVY on my heart, as is his family.

If you are willing... would you please say a prayer for my young friend??? Please pray for his safety and for his faith in God to increase.
I am adding a picture of him to my side bar and will keep it there until he comes home.

While you are at it... maybe you could pray for all of the men and women that are away from their families, fighting to protect the land that we love so much. And we must not forget to pray for their families that are at home, waiting for their return.

Thank you and I pray that you all have a blessed day!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

I don't usually do this

I'm sure that many of you have seen (or even follow) blogs that have "giveaways". I don't usually participate in them, but this particular one caught my eye!

I was reading through a few of my favorite blogs when I saw the giveaway at Jen's blog, Tatertots & Jello. (Click to read the post)

Jen has put together a giveaway for $50 to WILLOW HOUSE with her friend, Bridget. There are several ways to enter the giveaway, which are explained on Jen's blog. One of the ways to enter is to BLOG about the giveaway. So.......... this is what I am doing! **Smile**

Another way to enter, is to visit Bridget's Willow House site and tell her what your favorite product is. I did this, as well. This is the product that I picked ---

 It is called the French Wired Tiered Stand. It is on page 49 of the Willow House catalog. This picture is from the Fall catalog.

It's funny, because just before I read Jen's post at Tatertot's & Jello this morning, I read Carmel's post over at Our Fifth House. (You can read that post by clicking the title.)

Carmel has a BEAUTIFUL home and blogs about her decorating and organizing ideas. Today's post was about this very item from Willow House!! Carmel has used the beautiful wired tiered stand to organize items on her kitchen desk area.

Recognize the stand?? It looks a little different, huh? Apparently, it comes apart and Carmel took the top tier off so that it would fit better on her desk. It's still VERY pretty!!

I have been looking for decorative ways to "spruce up" & organize my home office space and I loved Carmel's idea! It's kinda' neat how mine, and these other two blogs, are coming together so nicely!

I may or may not win the giveaway, but at least I have an idea of a beautiful way to decorate and organize my desk supplies!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

He knows that I love Him

and I don't feel that I have to PROVE it to others.

If you are on the popular social network site called FACEBOOK, then you may have seen this post on someone's status ---

I believe in Jesus Christ and have accepted Him as my personal Savior. One facebooker has challenged all believers to put this on their wall. In the Bible it says, if you deny me in front of your peers, I will deny you in front of my Father at the Gates of Heaven. This is simple. If you love God and you are not afraid to show it, re-p...ost. Are you willing?

I see a lot of different post like this one that ask you to "repost" this to your status if you believe whatever the post is about. (I wanted to find some more examples, but of course... when I go looking for them, I can't find any!)

This one really bothered me, tho. I feel as if it is asking me to PROVE my love for God by reposting this to my status, and if I don't... I will be denying that I know Him!

In Matthew 22:37-40... Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.”

I try very hard to live out my faith and I show my love for God in my everyday actions.

Jesus said "If you love Me, keep My commandments". I try very hard to do this.

How can we show our love for God to others?? -- Here's how...

By following His teachings and commandments, by loving others, and by continuing a relationship with Him; by praying to Him and by reading His word.

By praising Him and thanking Him, all the time, for everything that He has given to you and does for you. To Him, give all the glory!!
Read your bible every day in order to learn more about my God. 
Witness to others. Tell them about God.

Commit your life to Him. Make sure He comes first in your life and try very hard to seek Him first in everything that you do!  
Remember that when you serve others, you are serving Him.

Go to church every Sunday.

Live the way Jesus did to the best of your ability.

Believe that Jesus is God.

Remember that you can not earn salvation. Salvation is given to you by Jesus as a free gift when you believe the truth about Jesus. The truth about Jesus is that the only way to be saved and to get into heaven is by believing in faith alone that Jesus, who is God, died for our sins on the cross and rose from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:1-4). Believe this and you are saved, no matter what you do or what you fail to do.

May God Bless you today!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

A Good Weekend

I really don't have anything to blog about. My "blogging mind" is empty at the moment, for whatever reason.

The weekend has been good.

Friday, I spent the day cleaning and doing chores around the house. I know.... BORING!! David and I met some good friends for pizza that evening. We didn't go to our usual place, but that was ok. I love pizza no matter where it is from! The only pizza that I really don't care for is one with a "thin" crust. If I'm going to eat pizza, it's gotta have all that yummy dough!! YUM!!

Anyway..... It was nice to see our friends. We hadn't seen them since before Christmas. Well, I take that back. We did see them on Christmas Eve at church, but we really only had time to give a ((hug)).

We talked about a lot of things over dinner. One topic of conversation was future vacation destinations that we really wanted to go to! We talked about making two trips to the beach this summer and maybe taking a trip to New Orleans in the Spring. We also talked about taking a trip down to the Florida Keys and maybe taking a cruise together. I don't think these last two things will happen this year, but hopefully in the near future, anyway!

Yesterday, David and I went couch shopping. We aren't in dire need of a couch, but ours is beginning to show it's age and we would love to replace it. There are two different furniture stores that are going out of business in town and we thought we might be able to get a good deal on one. But.... their idea of a "deal" and our idea of a "deal" were two differnt things. Oh well. We'll just have to save some more money and get one when the time is right.

We were home in time to watch the AFC playoff game between the Baltimore Ravens and the Pittsburgh Steelers. I was only interested in this game because my Atlanta Falcons are were in the playoff's as well.

David made brunswick stew and a fire in the fireplace. He's so wonderful! **Smile** I enjoyed them both as I watched the Ravens lose to the Steelers. (I was pulling for the Ravens, of course!)

Then, at 8:00, it was time for the Falcon's game!! Wahoo!!! I was ready!! I had my jersey on and I was PUMPED UP!!! (Excited)

The first quarter of the game was good. The Falcons played well. The rest of the game, tho.... was DREADFUL!!!  Well.... at least it was for those of us that are Falcons fans. The Green Bay Packers dominated the rest of the game! The Falcons fell apart. It was sad. The score was sad, too.... 48-21. So.... my Falcons are done now, until next year. I went to bed before the game was even over. I couldn't take seeing the ending.

Today, I went to church and I taught led my Sunday School class -- The College "Kids". When we got home, I had some more yummy Brunswick Stew for lunch... (I'll probably have more for dinner, too!!)... and until now, I've been doing some organizing and cleaning in my office /craft room /dump & run room. It's still not finished, but I at least accomplished part of it!

I'm a bit tired, now. I think a nap might be next on the list! **Smile**

I hope that all of you have had an enjoyable weekend!!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Friday Finds

I am in TABLESCAPE and THEMED DECORATING "mode"!!! I'm finding it fun to see what I can find for the cheapest price.

As I have been searching looking reading thru different blogs and I keep finding myself going back to the ones that have to do with TABLESCAPES and THRIFTY DECORATING. I am so fascinated by what people are finding by going to Goodwill, yard sales, thrift shops, & the clearance shelves at many wonderful stores!

One of my favorite blogs that I keep returning to is Linda's blog at A La Carte. She can find some of the most beautiful and interesting things! I also enjoy Marty's blog at A Stroll Thru Life. She loves to decorate and finds such beautiful things at bargain prices!

Soo...... after being ICED in for a day or so.... I ventured out on Tuesday and wondered thru three of my favorite stores... Ross, Marshall's, & TJMaxx.

Here's my LOOT that I came home with! --

I went to Ross first. They always have great holiday items and I had my February Tablescape & Decorating Theme, in mind. I plan to have a Valentine Theme, of course! I saw this adroable jar, first. It was only a few dollars, but I decided that I probably had a jar at home that I could use and make my own jar, like this one. So, I set it back down. (I took this pic with my phone camera. It takes great pics, if the light is good.)

Then, I came across THIS jar. It was only $2.99 and I love the way that it opens. I am not sure what this kind of jar is called. I know that it is not a mason jar, but something simliar. (Forgive my photography skills. I am still working on that!) I decided that I could use this jar to decorate like the one above. Then, I could put candy in it, or maybe love notes to my family! It will be a cute addition to either my dining table, my mantle, or the kitchen counter.

Next, I found this unusual piece! It jumped off the shelve at me because of the beautiful blue color! (I am a sucker for all things blue! Especially, blue glassware!) I'm still not sure if it is meant to be a flask or a syrup bottle! My guess is a syrup bottle! It was only $1.99! My first thought was that it would be a great piece to showcase above my kitchen cabinets. (My decorating up there, needs help!) But, the beautiful blue color, was a little BRIGHT! I carried it in my cart as I continued to shop, then I decided that since it was only $2, and I liked it so much, I really couldn't leave it behind.

My next "find" was this beautiful red vase. (I guess it is a vase!) I think it will be a beautiful addition to my Valentine decorations! It will be cute filled with Hershey Kisses! It was only $2.99.

Next, I headed over to Marshall's, which is in the same shopping center as Ross... so, no wasting gas! This is where I found my favorite "find" of the day!! Take a look at this bowl!! (I guess that is what you call it!) I have seen plates like this with the ribbon running thru the edge, but never a bowl. I love how you can change out the ribbon for different holidays or decorating purposes. It came with this black & white, polka-dotted ribbon... which I love! Ashley told me that her store sells ribbon like this by the yard, so now I have "connections" to more ribbon! YAY! I'm not sure what I will put in it yet, but I can already see it with a pretty red ribbon, laced thru it for Valentine's! It was my most expensive purchase at $6.99. Still a bargain!

 My next find was this sign. I LOVE what it says, but I don't like the "colors" of it. They don't show up very well. So, my plan is to repaint it. I see it in black, with white lettering or an off-white, with black lettering. I will most likely use this as a decorating piece for above my kitchen cabinets, but I think it may go on my mantle as part of my Valentine's decor. It was only $2.50. I was disappointed that Marshall's didn't really have any Valentine decor. Oh well.

Next, I headed over to T.J.Maxx (which is conveniently, right across the street!) where they were in the middle of re-organizing their "home" section. So, it made shopping a little more challenging. Things were in PILES and I had to literally DIG thru things to see anything!

The first thing that caught my eye was this RELAX sign. This had David's name written ALL OVER it!! I had to get it!! It will go perfectly above my kitchen cabinets as a reminder to not only David, but to all of us to do just that.... RELAX! It was only $3.99.

This last "find", was something that I carried around (like the blue syrup bottle) for a bit because I wasn't sure if I liked it enough to pay the $5.99 price. (Yes. I am cheap!) I am always thinking of ways that I can "make" something instead of buying it. It's hard to tell in this photo, but it is Valentine "garland". There are five hearts. Three of them say, "Happy Valentine's Day". I finally decided to get the garland because the more I thought about it... I couldn't really think of something better that I could make. This garland will look nice, draped across my mantle.

Next week, I hope to "hit up" stores such as Hobby Lobby, The Dollar Tree, & Michael's and see what kinds of "finds" that I can find there!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Do you feel left out, Florida??

Snow present in 49 of the 50 U.S. states

Click here to read the article to where this photo came from.

I was watching Good Morning America and heard George say that 49 out of our 50 states, here in the U.S. have snow on the ground! Even Hawaii, where I had no idea that it snowed there! WOW!

The only state that does not have snow is Florida. It made me wonder if the people of Florida -- called "Floridians" -- feel left out. I know that I have at least one blogger friend that lives in Florida. If you are reading this, Becca, I'd love to know your thoughts!

I am assuming that most of the Floridians do NOT feel left out, as I know that many of the residents of Florida moved there to ESCAPE the snow!! Some of them live in Florida for the winter only. They are called "Snowbirds". I am guessing the name came because they "fly" south for the winter! Haahaa!

Check out this adorable photo that I found when I "Googled" the word... SNOWBIRDS

Pretty cute, huh??

David grew up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (The North). He moved to Florida to attend college there and never went back to Philly. He now hates... excuse me... LOATHES the cold weather!! Just the other day, he was complaining about it and I said... "I don't like it either but, there's nothing that we can do about it, is there?"  He came back with this response... "Yes there is! We could MOVE!"  I, of course, told him that he would then complain because it was too HOT!

The truth is... we both complain about the cold AND the hot!

I wonder if we'll someday become Snowbirds and head south. I wouldn't mind that so much. Then, I could do this.... anytime I wanted!!

Seven Mile Beach outside the Grand Cayman Marriott

Enjoy your warmth, Florida and be glad that you don't have to suffer through this cold white stuff that you are not familiar with called... SNOW!

By the way... our ice has mostly melted, but the temperature this morning is 25, with a windchill that makes it feel like it's in the teens!!! BRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Winter Mantle

Over the weekend... before the "Ice Storm"... I worked hard on getting my mantle just the way that I had invisioned it! I wanted it to go with the blue & white, snowflake theme that I have going as my tablescape. Last week... as I mentioned in a previous post... I went in search of  WINTER items for my "theme".

Here are a few photos of what I bought and what I did... my photography skill still need work!

I bought 3 of these wooden snowflake shapes at Hobby Lobby. They were plain white and were with the Christmas clearance items. One got broke SOMEHOW before I got them home! (See below) I got out my craft glue and whatever glitter that I could find.... some white and some silver.... and added my own "touch" to them! ~ The little snowflakes that you see are made of "foam". I got a package of these from Michael's, also in the clearance section. They have a "sticky" back to them and I just used blue ribbon that I already had, to attach them. ~ The big snowflake already had a blue ribbon attached to it, for hanging. ~ The snowflakes are hanging from "snowflake ribbon" that I also bought at Michael's. ~ You'll have to overlook the gun in the background. It is a permanent fixture to our fireplace and I didn't even think about trying to take it down before I hung my snowflakes! (I should have!) Oh well.

I bought 3 more, smaller snowflakes at Hobby Lobby, as well. They were not in the clearance section, but were still very inexpensive. I used the snowflake ribbon to hang them from my mirror. I also added my special glitter "touch" to them, like I did to the bigger snowflakes!

Here's a closer look at one of the small snowflakes.

This is one of the glass vases that I bought for my Christmas mantle. It had red glass beads in it then. I bought blue and white (mixed) beads at Walmart ($3.00 for one bag. I bought two.) to replace the red ones that I had for Christmas. ~ I found these "ice branches" at Michael's in the clearence section. I fell in love with them the moment that I saw them! (I also used them on my tablescape!)

Here's one view of my completed mantle. I just LOVE the snowflakes!! I left the picture frames there, but I may try and find something to replace them, or... take them away all together. ~ The glass & metal snowman in the middle is one of my favorite things! He was a gift from a student, several years ago. ~ The Willow Tree angels were both gifts, as well. ~ You can see the "broken" snowflake (in the middle). I was quite upset when it arrived home, broken. But, Miranda helped me to realize that it would look fine, because not all snowflakes are the same! And... she was right!

Another view. I really should take down those picture frames! Miranda (on the left) looks quite out of place!! She looks like she is naked, but she's not. LOL! She's actually in her swimsuit, rolling around in the wet sand, on the beach at Hilton Head, South Carolina. Great memories!

I'm already planning my Valentine's "look" for February! I'm hoping to get out of the house today (I've been cooped up way too long!) and maybe go to town in "search" of some items! **Smile**
Plus.... the gym is calling my name real LOUD!!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Ice Storm ??

Yesterday, we were glued to our TV watching the news regarding the approaching WINTER WEATHER. For our area, here in the "deep south", the predictions were for sleet and/or freezing rain. For those of you that may not know.... for us "Southerners", the words SNOW and ICE bring about panic!!

Freezing rain is the worst because that is what causes ICE STORMS!! The trees can not handle the weight of the ice and the branches BREAK! Then, this causes power outages due to the branches falling on power lines.

The news & weather channel had us all thinking that this was the BIG ONE and we needed to be prepared. So... we David spent the day yesterday preparing our home for what MIGHT happen.

He stacked firewood near the door.
He cleaned and filled my antique oil lamps with fresh oil.
He prepared meals for us to have on hand.
He turned up the pool pump so that the pool would not freeze.

I was quite lazy yesterday, but I did get a few things done to "prepare", as well.

I ran the dishwasher so that we would have clean dishes.
I did some laundry.
I made sure my phone was charged.

This morning... I woke up about 5:30am and ran walked hurried to the window to see what kind of "accumulation" we had. Of course, it was dark and I couldn't see anything. It wasn't until I opened the back door and turned the back light on to let the dogs out, that I realized that it was SLEETING! I could "sort of " see that the ground was "white", but not totally covered. I'd have to wait until daylight to really see.

Here's some photos that I took once I COULD SEE! I am not sure if we can really call it an "Ice Storm" or not. What do you think?? ....

The first thing that I noticed was these streaks of ice that had formed on the screen of my screened porch.

The pine trees are what we worry about the most. They are weak.

Icicles on the grill. 

I like this shot of the grill!

And this one!

Care to have a seat??
This looks like snow, but it's really sleet!

My girls are excited that their college closed for the day. We are just being lazy, together and watching the trees as they blow in the cold wind! YIKES!! I don't think the temps are going to rise enough to melt all this stuff, so I have a feeling that we will be home again tomorrow because the roads will be more dangerous. YAY! .... I guess.

At least we have power..... for now!


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