Tuesday, March 27, 2012

all good things must come to (an abrupt) end....

the weather has taken a bit of a nosedive.  granted, it is still waaaaayyyyy better than it was at this time last year but we all got really spoiled this past two weeks.  in fact, 
don had to cut the grass on sunday.  

i don't think he has ever cut the grass before may or june in years past.  it was the last really warm day and it topped out in the high 60's or low 70's.
the kids played and 
 the forsythia is in full bloom.
everywhere i look, there is a glow of green.
but, alas, it never lasts.  this is michigan, where the state motto is "if you don't like the weather, wait an hour and it will change".  
and change it did....
last night the temperatures got down to 25 degrees.  
our neighbors, curt and laura have two apple trees and two peach trees which had already flowered.  they were worried about the freeze, so curt googled what to do and found out that if you put christmas lights on the trees around the blossoms, the heat from the bulbs will keep them warm enough to not freeze.   
 he covered the trees with bedsheets

 and tarps for good measure......
the tarps looked a little scary....

but the trains and trucks sheet added a bit of a hillbilly flavor.....
they had the purtiest yard in the whole trailer park.....   :)
but it worked, the blossoms didn't freeze and i am looking forward to some juicy peaches and crunchy honeycrisp apples in the fall.  
hopefully.  unless it snows. 
this is michigan, after all!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

the winter of our content......

 like most of the country, we have had some pretty mild weather lately.  and when i say mild, i mean hot!!  it was 84 degrees here today and right this minute, at 10:39 pm, it is 70 degrees outside.  seventy degrees....seven-zero!  
tomorrow's expected temperature is 90 degrees.  ninety degrees.....nine-zero!  
tomorrow is march 21st.  not july 21st, march...
i am not complaining.  
no one is around here.  
normal highs for this time of year range from 26 to 45 degrees.  the temperature on this date last year was 36 degrees.  
the total snowfall for our area last year was 75 inches.  the snowfall this year so far???  33 inches.  
we have had temps 65 and above for close to two weeks now.  and with all of the 
 this weather is heaven!!!
 we have tulips coming up in the yard,
and the rose canes are leafing out....
 the red maple trees, just look at them.
 my curly willow is green with new growth
it's green!!! 
everything has a tinge of green.
 and my lilacs are budding.
 the russian sage is sprouting and the spiders have added their silver strands to the design.
 the willow trees by the pond are leafing as well.
 we have never seen such growth on the butterfly bush as there is right now.  we usually have to cut all of the dead wood off each spring.  nothing died this winter.  it never got cold enough, really.
 the bradford pear tree will have their stinky white flowers blooming soon.  
 the weeping cherry tree still shows some of last year's remnants tangled with the new leaves.  
 i had fresh chives for our dinner salad this past sunday. 
 rhubarb, i have rhubarb......and i have visions of rhubarb crumble dancing in my head.
 the raspberry canes are abloom 
 and the strawberry runners are running amok....
even the weeds are growing.
and it looks like the grass is going to need cutting soon.

this just doesn't happen in michigan.  
we usually have snow well into march and even into april.  nothing starts blooming until the first couple weeks of april and the leaves on the trees usually don't start  budding until may.  we are supposed to have temps in the high 80's until the end of the week and then 20-30 degrees above average for the week following. 
the kids have been playing outside every day until nightfall, barefoot, bruised and mosquito bitten....
and best of all??? on saturday night, st. patrick's day, we went to ziggy's.
our local ice cream spot closes for the year on september 30th and reopens on april 1st every year....
it's been open since march 14th....
a really smart business move since i was in line for 25 minutes waiting for my first ice cream of the year.....well worth the wait...
      :D   <-----  that's me with a huge smile on my face....
i hope the weather in your area of the country is just as beautiful as it is here.  

Thursday, March 15, 2012

i have some very talented friends {part 1}....

tina and jerry...
they used to live next door to us.  they moved in a couple of weeks after we did way back in 2000,  newly married and fresh off of their honeymoon.  they were the most fantastic neighbors and we became fast friends. tina has an incredible eye for decor and her house was an inspiring mix of modern design and vivid color. lots of black furniture with bright reds, cobalt blues, bright oranges and charcoal grey adorning the walls and accessory decor.   jerry loved working in the yard and landscaped with the same modern twist.  lots of hardscape with just the right mix of greenery.  and he turned the pond that we shared in the yard into more than just a retention pond by cleaning up the edges, rimming them with rocks and adding a fountain.
this gave all of the neighbors who bordered the pond a beautiful view out of our windows.
 they had two little girls while they lived here.  i've been taking their photos since eden, the oldest, was about a year old.   london, the youngest, is the picture of her mama and eden, her daddy....
they moved about two years ago and we miss them terribly.  although they only moved about 15 minutes away, time and life gets in the way and we don't see each other as much as we should. we are working hard on changing that.  
tina invited me over to see the changes she has made in the decor of her home. she has changed her decor style drastically from hard modern to shabby, frenchy, vintage distressed.  and it looks fantastic. 
i want to take you on a little tour of her new home. 
daughter eden has a beautiful room done in pinks, golds and greys....
the bed linens are from target, urban outfitters, joann fabrics and t.j.maxx.   the angel wings are from hobby lobby.
 she made the lampshade above by tearing strips of fabric and tying them to the lampshade frame (which she picked up at the goodwill and tore off the old fabric from, a girl after my own thrifty heart) after painting the lamp white white.
most of the other wall decor is from hobby lobby as well.
 this is the playroom, located in the bonus room of the house over the garage, so it's long and narrow and split into two rooms.  perfect for two little diva girls....
i love the tulle draped from the corners of the ceiling to the chandelier. 

 daughter london has the blue room and if you notice, this is the same chandelier that i have in my laundry room.  tina fell in love with it and because it's no longer available from lowe's where i originally got it, she scoured craigslist until she found not one, but two of them....she painted hers too!!
she also added ribbon flowers to the candlelight bottoms
and although it's hard to see in this picture, she also added tiny ribbon flowers to the letters on the wall above her window.
bed linens for this room are from target, joann fabrics and t.j. maxx as well.
 tina is so creative that she found a design on pinterest and drew it freehand to london's wall.   the little feathers holding up the strands of pearls have lights behind them and the branches are bejeweled with stick-on gems.  
 these feather angel wings were found online.  they are gorgeous....
 the girls bathroom is beautiful too.  she is currently working on finding a sideboard like this one
that we redid a couple of years ago, to use as a sink base.  she keeps telling me that mine would be perfect for her girl's bathroom....i'm not ready to part with it just yet though, because it is actually the perfect size to use in our master bathroom as a sink base!  :)
 most of the linens here are from the rachel ashwell collection at target too.  she glammed everything up with some ribbon and feathers...
 even her laundry room has that frenchy glam look.  
 just look at the light that those chandeliers throw around the room....
 the furniture in her bedroom is a throwback to the modern look in her old house.  she wanted to purchase new furniture for her bedroom but i talked her out of it.  i knew i would be able to give her the look she wanted just by painting the orange wood and turn it into the new style of decor she wanted.  we worked on it for an entire day a couple of weeks ago and by the time we finished,  it was late at night so the pictures don't do it justice.  this is a before picture of her dresser and mirror.  i will share the finished pictures of her room in an upcoming post and i assure you that the furniture looks drastically different.  i just need to get back over there and get some pictures during the day....
i love having creative friends.  
we play off of each other and share ideas.  we inspire and push each other to get things done....and we look at our changes with big smiles on our faces....
we miss you guys bunches....

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