Thursday, May 29, 2008

I've been tagged!!

As I have shared in a previous post, I really had no idea what to expect as I started my blog and etsy shop. I thought it would be a fun place to share my thoughts and to show some of the projects that I have completed. I did not expect that I would meet so many wonderful people through this blogging process. I have been chatting with some of these new friends on line, reading their blogs and admiring their beautiful art. My blog has connected me with friends from all over the country that I would never have had the opportunity to meet. Deborah from is one of these new friends. Deborah's esty shop is filled with wonderful French vintage inspired treasures. Stop by for a visit you will be so glad that you did!! So my new friend Deborah has tagged me. What does that mean you ask. Well here are the rules....

1. First I am to let you know what the rules are :)
2. I am to let you know who tagged me and link to her blog
3. Now for the hard part... I am to share 7 facts about myself on my blog, some random,
some weird. I have done some silly and weird things in my life time. I just have to decide
which ones I want the world to know about. :)
4. Next I am to tag 7 people at the end of this post by leaving their names as well as a link to
their blogs. So look out all my blogging friends---you could be next :)
5. The last rule is to notify who I have tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
Well here we go with my 7 random facts about me........

1. I have absolutely no musical ability. When my son was a baby I would sing him lullaby's. He would fall to sleep so quickly probably because he didn't want to hear me sing. Oh and by the way my dancing skills are just as wonderful. I have been described as "having no rhythm" You will not be seeing me on Dancing with the Stars :)

2. I am afraid of high places. Even if I am watching a movie and the scene is taking place high in the air, my stomach gets butterflies.

3. When I was a little girl, I knocked both of my front teeth out within a weeks time. One came out while I was jumping on the bed. I missed the bed and jumped right into my dresser. (how many times did my mother tell me not to jump on the bed---I guess she was right) The other lone tooth got caught in the swing chain and opps came right out. I had to wear a set of false teeth for a while so my other teeth would come in correctly. Here is a picture just for fun of my lovely false teeth.
4. My teenage idol was Scott Baio. Oh did I love him. I can remember writing Mimi Baio all over my notebooks. YIKES
5. The summer I turned 16, my sister talked me into going on a wilderness adventure to Blackwater Falls West Virginia with our church youth group. We were gone for 10 days and carried everything we needed in our backpacks. I slept under a tarp, ate spam, went caving, and even repelled off of a 90 foot cliff. Imagine how that was with my fear of heights :)

Not something this girl is ever going to do again!!! Glad I have these pictures to prove that I did it.

6. I do not like to drive on major highways. I will travel 40 miles out of my way just so I don't have to drive next to a trailer truck. I know all the back ways to all of my favorite places. These days with the price of gas I may have to be brave and take the more direct route.

7. I have watched the movie Ever After a Cinderella story with Drew Barrymore about 50 times. Whenever I am working in my craft room I love to have it on as I create. My friend Joyce says I listen to that like other people listen to the radio:) If you have never seen this movie before, rent it you will love it.
Well there you have it 7 random facts about me. I hope they gave you a smile.
Now let me see who I will tag........ my wonderful friend Joyce another wonderful friend Bethany yet another special friend Michele my new friend Cindy made through etsy and blogging another friend Barbara made because of etsy and blogging a wonderful scrapbooking friend Bev yet another friend Lyn all because of etsy and our blogs

Tag you are it ladies. I can't wait to read your random facts :)

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Don't forget to REMEMBER

Each year as the month of May comes to a close, there is one special weekend bursting with activity. Picnics with family, swimming pools will open for the summer season, greenhouses are busy selling flowers to be planted, summer cabins will be opened and freshened for another season, boats will be readied and taken to open waters, oh and so much yard work to complete--mulching, mowing, planting. Well this weekend is here---Memorial Day Weekend. In this fast passed world that we now live in, let us take a few minutes to really remember what this weekend is all about. Yes it is all of those for mentioned things and yes it is an extra day off from the office, but it is also time to remember our soldiers. Those who are serving, have served, and have given their lives for our country and our freedom. Such sacrifices these men and women have made as well as their families. So as we are enjoying all of those wonderful activities, please don't forget to remember our soldiers and their families. Pray for those currently serving to return safely to their loved ones, pray for those families who have given the ultimate sacrifice of theirs and don't forget to say thank you to those who have protected our freedom. As I close this post I want to share with you a poem that simply touches my heart and reminds me how blessed I am to have my freedoms. How thankful I am for our soldiers and their families.

Who's Got Your Back

I am a small and precious child
my dad's been sent to fight,
The only place I'll see his face
is in my dream at night.
He will be gone too many days
for my young mind to keep track,
I may be sad, but I am proud
My daddy's got your back.

I am a caring mother
my son has gone to war,
My mind is filled with worries
that I have never known before.
Everyday I try to keep
my thoughts from turning black,
I may be scared, but I am proud
My son has got your back.

I am a strong and loving wife
with a husband who had to go,
There are times I'm terrified
in a way most never know.
I bite my lip and force a smile
as I watch my husband pack,
My heart may break, but I am proud
My husband's got your back.

I am a soldier
serving proudly, standing tall,
I fight for freedom, yours and mine
by answering this call.
I do my job while knowing
the thanks it sometimes lacks,
Say a prayer that I'll come home
It's me who's got your back.

Happy Memorial Day and please don't forget to REMEMBER.

Monday, May 19, 2008

The Art of Repurposing

What in the world is repurposing you ask?? Well I define it as taking an object with it's original purpose and using it for something entirely different giving it a new purpose. You may have repurposed items all around your home without even realizing it. The laundry basket used to store toys, a pretty mug used to hold pencils by the phone, or empty baby food jars used to organize nuts and bolts in the garage. All good examples of repurposed items. Items for repurposing can be found just about anywhere. They can be new items or previously used items. I must admit I have been known to rescue items from the certain demise of the garbage man. I call these items curb-side treasures :) To master the art of repurposing you must "think outside the box". Well that's how my family refers to me anyway. When I look at an item I think about what it would look like with a fresh coat of white paint, or how I could use this item for unique storage or what would this item look like in the garden? It helps to give new purpose to things. Are you still confused ? Let me show you a few examples from around my home.......

First let's visit my garden.A bucket that once held coal now holds a pretty flower.

An old worn out shutter makes a nice background for a cheerful potted flower.

An old locker basket is now the new home for a happy geranium.

I have lots of repurposed items inside my home as well. Here are just a few of my favorites.

When I saw this old fan blade guard I just fell in love with it's charm. I wasn't sure what I would do with this little treasure but since it was only a quarter I scooped it right up. After I got it home I realized what a wonderful towel rack it would make hanging on my little red table in the kitchen.

This was a real find at a local flea market. It's original purpose was to display bags of chips for sale at a grocery store. I thought it would be perfect to display some of my favorite vintage photos of my family.

I love to repurpose items in my craft studio as well.

I have always loved the look of these old flower frogs.
I have quite a collection of them. This one found it's way to my scrapbook table and is the perfect thing to hold all of my pencils and pens.

I just recently added this repurposed item. When I came home with this my family just shook their heads. I told them not to worry I had the perfect plan for this treasure. What is it you ask...well it is the springs of a baby crib (painted that pretty shade of blue that I love) It is the perfect way to store all of my die-cuts. I purchased some little "S" hooks for them to hang on---now I can easily see what I have and it makes them so accessible.

I found this sweet little salt shaker at an estate sale recently. I really loved the way the glass was cut. I use salt shakers in my craft studio to store my glitter, but this one is so pretty I thought it would make the ideal vase for those dainty flowers growing in my garden right now.

As you can see, it is so much fun to repurpose items. Just use your imagination and "think outside the box". You will be amazed at how once that was headed for the trash will now become one of your prized treasures. Have fun and Happy treasure hunting :)

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Precious Family History

With the month of June right around the corner, it started me thinking about weddings and the romance surrounding each happy union. Each wedding with it's own unique story of how the happy couple met and fell in love. Was it love at first sight or was it a friendship that grew into love. How two separate families become one with one simple "I do". How the joining of two people embarks the journey of a new family.

This picture records the day that my maternal grandparents were joined in marriage. Andrew and Anna Gulyas were united in marriage on September 1, 1935. They met at their place of employment --my grandfather was the assistant pastry chef at a local bakery where my grandmother was also employed.

My paternal grandparents lived on the same street growing up. It was there they met and fell in love. George and Mary Smisko were united in marriage August 15, 1933.

I love everything about these photos. The dresses, the shoes, the hats, the flowers, the bow ties, are all so charming and romantic.

The family tree continued to grow with the marriage of my parents Bill and Joanne Smisko on June 2, 1962.

I feel so blessed to know the history of how my family began and to have these precious pictures forever recording the day.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day

I loved you from the very start,
You stole my breath, embraced my heart.
Our life together has just begun
You're a part of me my little one.
As mother with child, each day I grew,
My mind was filled with thoughts of you.

I'd daydream of the things we'd share,
Like late-night bottles and teddy bears.
Like first steps and skinned knees,
Like bedtime stories and ABC's.

When I first saw your precious face
I prayed your life be touched with grace.
I thanked the angels from above,
And promised you unending love.

I loved you from the very start,
You stole my breath, embraced my heart.
As mother and child our journeys begun,
My heart is yours forever little one.
~Author unknown~
From the time I was a little girl I can remember nothing I wanted more than to be a mother.
As I played with my baby dolls I would imagine what it would be like to actually have a baby of my own. I had no idea what a wonderful journey it would be. To hold this tiny little being in my arms totally dependant on me for everything.
I had so many questions and uncertainties..." what does it mean when he cries like this, is he getting enough to eat, does he sleep too much, am I caring for him in the best way possible? I was so thankful and felt truly blessed that I had the most amazing person to turn to with all of my uncertainties--my own Mom. I really don't know what I would have done without her then and even still to this day. My mom is not only a mother to me, but I can honestly say she is my friend. Through her example I have learned how to be a caring, nurturing mother to my own son. This is one of my favorite pictures of us. My mom, my younger sister and me.

Today was a wonderful day spending time with my family celebrating my mom and the blessing of being a mom.

Happy Mother's Day Mom. I love you so much. Thanks for being the best mom and friend that a daughter could ask for.

Wishing all of you a day filled with love as you celebrate those special Mom's in your life.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Girlfriends and Greenhouses

Growing up as a child, I never realized how important family traditions would become to me. When you are young, attending yearly family events was just something that you did. As I grow older, I realize how precious these traditions really are. Some traditions are started from the time you are born and others just seem to develop later in life. One such tradition that has developed later in my life and has become so special to me happens each year around this time---the week before Mother's Day. My Mom, my best friend Heidi, and I all meet at a wonderful local greenhouse called Kaelins Farm Market where we choose our flowers for the coming season together. Kaelins is a family run farm and one of my favorite places to visit. From the moment you walk into the door you feel welcome. I love that Mrs. Kaelin remembers me from year to year and is always so friendly and helpful. Not only is it a beautiful greenhouse but there is also a little luncheon kitchen where some of the yummiest of treats are cooked up. If I time it right, I am sometimes greeted with the wonderful aroma of freshly baked sweets. In the Fall there is nothing better than a freshly baked apple pie still hot right from the oven.

Their greenhouses are simply wonderful. I could get lost wandering from greenhouse to greenhouse just taking in all the beauty.

I usually plant in the same color palette reds, yellows, and blues but this year these wonderful pink dahlias changed my mind. I just had to have them.

After making our selections we load all our beautiful flowers into our cars and hurry home to plant. I love that this annual event has now become a special tradition. The memories of this day last forever. All summer long as I care for these beauties, I am reminded of the two very special people who share this day with me.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

A Wonderful Surprise......

When I decided to enter into the world of etsy and blogging, it was mainly to share my art with others. I had no idea that I would meet so many wonderful people in the process. I must say that I have really enjoyed getting to know new friends and chatting with them on line. The inspiration they give me through their art work and their blogs is amazing. One such person is Barbara of Southern Lady's Vintage. Her Etsy shop is filled with lovely vintage pieces. If you love roses as I do, please take a minute to look at all of her hand painted items with the most romantic roses that I have ever seen. Barbara also has a beautiful blog. From the moment you enter her blog you know it is someplace special. You are greeted with such beautiful music which invites you stay and visit for a while. Barbara recently had a special give away on her blog to celebrate her 100th post!! Guess what----I won. I was so happy to be part of the celebration and the recipient of such a lovely gift.
Thank you so much and Happy 100th post Barbara. I look forward to many more to come!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Home Sweet Home

Having someplace to go is home.
Having someone to love is family.
Having both is a blessing.

I have been truly blessed by both a loving family and a place of my own to call home. My home is not one of grand stature, but it is one full of love and wonderful memories. It is the place where we started our family, it is the place where our family has gathered for many picnics, a place where many a holiday and birthday have been celebrated, a place where our friends are always welcome, a place where we feel safe and comfortable.
Each room in my home is special to me, each in it's own way. I look at my son's room once a room decorated in the soft colors of a baby's nursery now filled with things belonging to a 17 year old young man. Wrestling trophy's, an electric guitar, an x box, and Cd's have long replaced teddy bears, Lego's and matchbox cars.
As I look at my kitchen, I am reminded of how when I decided to redecorate, my family and friends chipped right in to help out. Never complaining when the cabinets needed just one more coat of paint then we had originally thought. My best friend's husband took so much time and care to hang wainscoting giving the room that cottage look that I love.

Our game room filled with vintage signs and framed sports jerseys--the place my son and husband "hang out" with each other. I love the sound of their laughter as they watch a goofy movie that only
they would enjoy.

My craft room that has allowed me so much happiness as I create. Someday I will show you pictures when it is just a little more tidy (lol)

Then there is my living room. The one place in my house that I can retreat to when there is craziness everywhere else. The room with no TV where I can just sit and think. The place where I have decorated with my true personality. This is the room that I sit and visit with special friends and the room I would love to share with you.

This sweet pillow was made for me by my mom. She is such a talented sewer and quilter. I plan on sharing more of her work with you in my mother's day post. I can't wait to show you her amazing quilts--I know you will love them.

I guess the line from one of my favorite movies is true----There really is no place like HOME!

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