Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Home Sweet Home

Should old acquaintance be forgot
And never thought upon
The flames of love extinguished,
And fully past and gone.


home sweet home


Monday, December 30, 2013

Multiple Monday Series #26: Holiday haul

None of my gifts need any permanent storage.
A portion will hopefully disappear with some quality jumping jack and sit-up action.



Friday, December 27, 2013

Thursday, December 26, 2013

It's the thought that counts.

I stuck a candy cane scented Bath & Body disk in my daughter's car for holiday flair.

Why buy the new snowflake dispenser, when the skeleton will do just fine with a bit of holiday bling?



Wednesday, December 25, 2013

No room left in the inn

Even the sacred manger is not safe from collecting clutter.
Ten years ago the donkey was adopted as the mascot of our family exchange. 
The dragon appeared a few nights ago when all guests left.

The baby truffle Jesus...that's plain wrong.

Merry Christmas 2013.


Monday, December 23, 2013

Multiple ideas to replace the traditional Christmas Tree

These are some alternatives to having a traditional Christmas tree.


1) Trinket Christmas Tree.alternative christmas tree with trinkets against wall

Close-up of the trinkets.
close-up-of-alternative-christmas-tree-with-trinkets

2)  Charlie Brown Christmas tree with branches and a few bulbs. 
alternative-christmas-tree-with-branches-and-random-bulbs

 3) Salvaged wood Christmas Tree
alternative christmas tree with pieces of wood leaning against wall

 4) Branch shelf Christmas Tree with a simple strand of lights
branch shelf for alternative christmas tree with string of lights

5)  Washi Tape Christmas Tree with simple strand of star bunting.
wash christmas tree

6)  Horizontal branch Christmas Tree 
horizontal branch as alternative christmas tree

 7)  Cardboard Christmas Tree.
cardboard christmas tree

 8) Photograph Christmas tree collage.
photograph collage alternative christmas tree



Friday, December 20, 2013

Coupon backfire

I detest coupons.

Like the time I spent three hours in a dressing room and my final picks where the only clothes not included in the sale. I have never returned to that store since.

With each donation, this thrift store gives you a coupon to come into their store and load up again.
As part of our  "knick-knack" themed Christmas party, I figured I could grab $10 of goodies and have fun table settings for $7. What a deal.



I was an unleashed animal in the territory that used to fuel my trinket-holic behavior.

The hunt was fabulous as I tried to keep my search for item's under .99 cents.
Up and down the aisles I roamed.

Look at this crocheted winter wonderland:


A santa napkin holder...all for only 69 pennies.

Mary Jo had taken such care to give this angel ornament to Melinda who never removed the tag:


I had an employee check on this sticker book that was missing the majority of it's stickers.
The manager said that the lowest price she could mark a child's book was .99. 
"It's missing all the stickers," I huffed... and she threw it in the garbage.
I politely took it out as a freebie and it will be transformed into name place cards.


 $28 dollars later I had collected lights and bulbs and prizes with coupon in hand at the register.


For the sleuths out there who noticed the coupon and price tag of one of the items didn't coordinate, they would have discovered I was at the wrong store.

When this kitchy-decorated wonderland is done, I will call up arc to have them pay for the gas to take it all away and the temptation of coupons will hopefully not surface again.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Mother knows best




Many years ago my mother convinced me to buy a black rayon suit.
She insisted that I would have many fancy parties and formal cruises to wear it to.
I believed her.
Years went by with no holiday galas or a cruise.

I grabbed the unused suit and took off for the consignment store. 
It had NEVER been worn...it will be a true find for some lucky person that attends fancy galas I thought.

The consignment store rejected it.

This past weekend I ran to my closet for an outfit to wear to a holiday party.
The black suit that dodged both the consignment store and the last donation truck raised it's shoulder pad and asked for a date.

It was comfortable and somewhere that night an angel got it's wings.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Monday, December 16, 2013

Multiple Monday Series #26: Hand blown abundance

Our tree has an assortment of ornaments from various countries we have visited.

international-christmas-ornaments

The treasured handmade collection of rubber bands from my son's volunteering for Project Christmas Child  hangs with pride.
rubber-band-ornament


Last year an abundance of hand blown glass ornaments were introduced to our already packed tree.  The collection was pared down, selecting only favorites and the rest went into the donation box. 

hand-blown-christmas-ornaments

The same week I visited a friend in the hospital and thought I should bring some decorations to her room. The donated box of ornaments popped in my head, and with a spare shoelace I was off.

hand-blown-christmas-ornaments

For six hours we both chatted and gazed at the sparkling strand. 
I had never really looked at them individually before. 
Each was stunning. 
They had to be removed from our cluttered tree to appreciate their beauty.
Good bye and good cheer to one who needed it.

Friday, December 13, 2013

HONY captures portraits of humanity

My favorite part of facebook is following Humans of New York.

Brandon Stanton roams the streets of New York taking photos and gathering insightful captions of people he meets. I love that he is fearless to walk up to strangers and is so in tune to everything around him.

Like this one:

Wendell is hands down the greatest homeless fashion designer who ever lived. He makes almost all his clothes from things he finds. I hadn't seen him in awhile, so I was quite thrilled to walk up on him Tuesday, doing this to a Gandhi statue.






STORYBOARD: Capturing the 'Humans of New York' from Tumblr on Vimeo.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Truck transformed into a living space

Going off the grid, Joseph Tayyar transformed this truck into a self-sufficient and mobile house.
Truck transformed into a living space

The inside is done nice with wood and earthy colors.
Truck transformed into a living space

Solar panels are used on the roof.
pasolar panels on covered truck transformed into a house

For the price tag of $250,000, I would've expected a bit more curb appeal.
Truck transformed into a living space

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Monday, December 9, 2013

Multiple Monday Series #25: What's for dinner?

Our recipe flip book is used weekly.
It contains laminated cards of all our favorite dishes.
One was created for meals, and one for desserts.

creative-recipe-holder

When they are put in the cupboard, they need to lay sideways, taking up tons of space.
One has to go, along with a dated recipe holder.

creative-recipe-holder

Deep down I strive to serve  a meal more glamorous than Sloppy Joes.
The problem is no one is requesting stuffed baked peaches or escalloped corn. .
recipe

Or maybe it's my eyesight?
These Shanghai chicken wings have blurred into abstract art.


Here is a flashback to my mom days of making play dough.
I used to add koolaid packets for amazing smell and color...and it's not even written down.
recipe

At dinner we discussed the proper carmel corn recipe since there were two.
No one raised their hand when I asked if veggie pizza should be added to the menu.
The blueberry muffins and peanut butter cookie cards were officially laminated and added to the flip book.

There will be a cook-off Wednesday for the best macaroni and cheese recipe.
With that done, all the stars will have aligned and there will be peace (and space) in the cupboard again.

Friday, December 6, 2013

The results are in.

I stopped raking after 65 bags.
The Eagle Scout added a few more in back.
72 bags... 2 bags over last year ... another cul-de-sac record.



I am proud to report the second freezer level is quickly descending.
A large box of premier steaks were hauled away by a hungry college student.
Two bags of elk hamburger were collected for the complimentary office hunter comrade exchange.
Now all we need is to figure out how to attractively package elk beef for holiday gifts and we can return this beast before the 90 days are up.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

North of the sun

"North of the sun" is a short 45 minute award winning movie is about two 20 year old film makers who set out to build their own house on a Norwegian beach and surf throughout the winter. How they survive is very resourceful and inspiring. The photography is outstanding.
beach in Norway where two surfers build a house out of found items and surf all winter.








Watch it on Vimeo $5.99 to rent $10.00 to buy.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Rune Guneriussen

A grid of physical entities.
A minute of ironic escape.
A multiverse explanation.
Capacity to breed and recover.
One can rely on the prudence of his decisions #4


See more work of Rune Guneriussen

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

A trivial award.

During the Thanksgiving meal this past week there was a group trivia contest.
I ended up winning, or did I?


Monday, December 2, 2013

Multiple Monday Series #24: Sub zero

Blame it on the hash browns.
Having the important Thanksgiving assignment of making cheesy potatoes comes along with a lot of pressure. Especially when I bought  the ingredients so early that I accidentally ran out on Thanksgiving eve to purchases the final two 4 pound bags. With one tug of the frozen corn bag, a stash of three more bags of hash browns were discovered. I had 11 pounds of hash browns for a 4 pound recipe.












The bigger news is that 150 pounds of prize elk arrived at our house around the same day.  Removing the extra bags of hash browns wasn't going to put a dent in the meat shipment.
So yeah, it happened. A 7 cubic foot additional freezer was purchased.


These events are called set backs and are only temporary.
We now have an official thermometer of our leaving this house.