August 28, 2010


Say hello to Sophie.

She is the youngest resident of the Happy Little Cottage.

She is a maltese/yorkie mix, aka a morkie, which reminds me of Mork and Mindy,
which I haven't thought of in ages.

She does not realize that she weighs 5 pounds
and thinks that she is defender of the universe.

She makes squeaking sounds if her squeaky toy doesn't squeak.

Her ears are her most expressive feature.

Thankfully she does not shed.

We work very hard to make sure she is not a "yappy" dog.
She tries just as hard.

Becky knits her sweaters and makes her bandanas.

She is totally spoiled, but you would be too if you were this adorable. Mwaah!

August 27, 2010

A Makeover Story

I am a sucker for all of the TV makeover shows.
Doesn't matter what is being made over.
A wardrobe, a room or a whole house, I love the before and afters.
I ooh and aah at the final reveal.

Let me present "The Chair".

This chair is in dire need of a makeover.
The drab brown stain.
The sorry looking fabric.

Enter a can of heirloom white spray paint.
5/8 of a yard of green gingham upholstery weight fabric.
Pom-Pom fringe.
You know that anything that includes pom-pom fringe is going to be cute. Right?

How about a little before and after side by side.

Ooooh! Aaaaah! Makes me sooooo happy!

This is going to be such a cute addition to the craft room/studio/guest room.

August 25, 2010


I am making progress on the craft room/studio/guest room project.


I have eliminated most of the clutter.

I have painted the walls. The color is Cottage White by Behr.

I have ripped out the carpeting.
Let me repeat that.
I have ripped out the carpeting.
By myself.
If I knew that I could rip out carpet by myself,
this carpet would have been gone about ten years ago.

Ripping out carpet is dirty and dusty work. But I did it!
It feels so good to get things done.

I am trying to decide what to do with the wood floors.
Part of them are in OK shape, and part of them are in not so OK shape.
I am wondering if I would be able to refinish them. Or maybe paint them.
Or just give them a good clean and find an area rug.

The room looks really empty, but I kind of like it. No clutter!
There is space for my sewing machine.

I found these pink baskets at Michaels for 80% off. $10.00 for five of them.
I love a bargain.

I am not sure what to do about the light fixture.
I bought this one from Ikea, and I don't think it can be shortened
enough so that I don't walk into it.
Do any of you have experience hanging one of these?

The only other major purchase for this room is a daybed. Hoping to find one at a garage sale or a thrift store. If all else fails there is one at Ikea that I like, but need to save my pennies for that.

I have never really taken photos in this room before, and it is dark! I've tried taking photos in the morning and afternoon, and natural light is a problem,
so I apologize for the somewhat fuzzy underexposed photos.

August 24, 2010

End of Summer

I snapped photos of what is still growing in the backyard when I got home from work this evening. We were a bit late in getting our seeds planted this year,
and the sunflowers are finally in their full glory.
I will miss them when they are gone.
I will definitely plant them again next year, along with my adorable zinnias.

It is hard to believe that summer is almost over.
This morning I could hear a school bus making it's practice run before school starts tomorrow.
I miss buying school supplies for my kids.
I may have to go out and buy some new pens and notebooks just for me.

August 23, 2010

We Interrupt This Project

I am still working on the craft room/studio/guest room project. Lots more to come on that.

In the midst of that project, I decided I wanted to finish another one.
One that has been in the works for two years.

I started this quilt two summers ago.
Did all of the patchwork, made the quilt "sandwich", then started to machine quilt it.
My sewing machine does not like to sew multiple layers of fabric and batting.
Can we say the word "pucker"?
For some reason I carried on machine quilting,
instead of stopping and possibly hand tying the quilt.
Then I gave up.

A year later I pulled the quilt out, did a bit more machine quilting and
evened up the edges to bind it. I even made really cute binding.

Six months later I can't find the really cute binding. Buy packaged binding.

This past weekend I pulled out the quilt and attached
the boring store bought binding by machine.
And then I finished the binding by hand sewing because it looks so much better.
I threw it the washing machine and dryer to achieve even more puckers!
And guess what? Even with the puckers and boring store bought binding, it is adorable!
And I FINISHED the quilt. I FINISHED a project! Go me.

The quilt is going to be fabulous in the craft room/studio/guest bedroom.

I really want to start another one

August 16, 2010

My New Project

I have been unmotivated.

I have wanted to turn Gavin's room into a
craft room/office/guest room
since he moved May 2009.

The room quickly turned into the I don't know where to put anything room.

Enter blog inspiration.

I love this room.

and OMG look at this one too.

Wednesday is my next day off .
The plan is to SIMPLIFY.
I need to throw away or give away items that I no longer use.

Scrapbook supplies are leaving. I haven't made a scrapbook page in two years,
and if I feel the need, will make a digital page.

Sewing supplies stay, but need to be organized.

Yarn. Most of it belongs to Becky.

I am going to be like The Fly Lady and conquer the clutter.

I will be posting the results of the big clean during the week.

August 15, 2010

Ladies Who Lunch

I am definitely not in the league of "ladies who lunch" on a consistent basis,
but I was in their ranks yesterday with my mom and sister.

A day like yesterday was a necessity.
I spent the day with two of the people I love most.
Sharing in "girl talk", lunch and shopping at Crocker Park.
Even though I am on a
super-frugal-only-working-part-time budget,
I splurged on few little luxuries.

We had lunch at Brio, which is where we have so many fun lunches together.
It is always such a treat to each such delicious food prepared by someone else,
and to be able to sit and chat about what's happening in each of our lives.

After lunch, we popped in and out of the shops.
A stop at Sephora is always dangerous for me,
and I left the store with my purchase of a teeny bottle of
Philosophy's Falling In Love perfume.
That scent is my own personal aromatherapeutic version of prozac.
If you've never smelled any of the Philosophy perfumes, give them a try.
They are for the woman who doesn't like perfume.

Another small luxury purchase was a
mocha frapuccino (how do you spell this word?) at Starbucks.
I have not had a Starbucks since the inception of the above referenced budget. Sigh.

My sister's and my budget decided that our purchase power would be better spent somewhere less expensive, so we headed to Old Navy. Now normally, with my short and hmmmm, extremely curvy figure, I don't have a lot of luck fitting into their clothes.
My meager clothing budget was gone in about 2 seconds after finding this adorable sweater.

It was one of those things that you try on, and it just screams
"I am so you, please buy me".
Love the flowers!!! A little retail therapy cures so many ills (but only if you pay in cash!).

The best part of the day didn't cost a dime.
It was heading back to Mom's house,
and talking til way past midnight.
Just us girls.

August 13, 2010

Happy Hot and Humid Friday

Today is one of the few days that I wish I had air conditioning in the house.
Most of the time I love having the windows open, but today
I feel like I live in Louisiana rather than northeast Ohio.
The zinnias in the yard are the only things that are happy in this heat.

The only remedy for days like today is to sit directly in front of a fan,
laptop open and play with Blogger. It helps to have eaten
2 fudgesicles and 1 banana popsicle
while working, and trying not get sticky drips all over the computer.

I'm not sure what direction this blog will take, but will probably include posts
about knitting and sewing and decorating
and life in my "happy little cottage".