Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Umbrella Sandbags! Yes!

Sounds like a medical condition!  

I haven't been here for quite some time but have been very busy with work and around the house doing "fall cleaning".. It is what I do here in Florida....getting ready for the nice cool temps.  Cleaning out closets, looking for fall things and looking forward to being outside more often without wilting.  It has been HOT!  But it finally feels a little better, at least here in the northern part of the east coast.

We finally got more patio furniture, table chairs and an UMBRELLA! If you have ever gotten one like mine, that has the three feet at the bottom, you know that you need sand bags or stones to weigh it down.  We went for the 50lb sand bags at $2.50 each....and of course sand bags are ugly.  After my husband brought them home I decided I had the perfect thing to cover them with.

To do this I had just purchased from my not so favorite big discount store, a vinyl tablecloth.  It measured 72" X 52".  I laid it face down and began cutting it up like I was wrapping Christmas presents!  I used my hot glue gun to seal the seams, and my husband came along behind me and sealed the seams again with heavy duty clear packing tape.

Cutting, Wrapping and Gluing
It worked out perfectly.  I put them face down over the feet of the umbrella stand and they at least look nice and can be easily moved, and recovered if necessary in the future... The cost was minimal.

What do you think??

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Signs and Mileage! Updated

Since posting this a few weeks ago ,(below) my sister finally sent me a picture of the sign just about completed.  I think it came out pretty cool!  What do you think?


Haven't been here for a while.  Besides working all day at a college, I have a ton of things to do every day and don't like it sometimes.  But this project kept me busy last weekend.  It wasn't even mine to keep, but I get to visit it occassionally when I go to my sisters Condo in Clearwater, FL.  This is the cute place if you want to see....   She has many many projects underway as she is the manager and trying to make the place a little more festive for guests.  She has guests from all over the world and this is what she wanted.  It's not quite done because we ran out of time to assemble all the signs up, but she will get them all hung up soon.

First we had Lowes cut some cedar boards 24" in length.  They were great and cut what we wanted!  Then we got some paint in all tropical colors.  She looked up some of the most popular places of where the guests come from and we got to painting.  First the boards....

Then we painted city names....

Then after using a post hole digger and adding some quickcrete, the 4 X 4 went in.  We painted a cute little cap for the top that had a copper top fixed to it...

We also found some items to add to the signs.  Miami has a fish....Key West has a Star Fish and shells, Tampa will have a "Buccaneer", Orlando might get some mouse ears and a few countries might get some flags....  All signs get a final coat of polyurethane for protection.  When they are all up it will be very colorful!

The Gecko was a last minute thought, and it is perfect.  I can't wait until she sends me a pic of the finished product.   This is an easy project and can be done at your dock, pool or vacation beach house.  The signs can also be mounted to a tall tree!

Now...time for a tropical beverage with an umbrella!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Quick Hiding Places

Ok, well it has been a VERY crazy week.  I have had friends move right down the street which is fantastic, but we have all been busy unpacking, laughing, eating, drinking.....visiting and did I say eating?  Wow!  And so much catching up to do. 

But recently I had to hide a few things I am so sick of looking at.  I had this bare place in my office of which I have NOT found the right piece to put there.  So in the mean time I got this great deal on a nesting set of hamper type of baskets.  They are of the Cocoa palm type of basket as some of the other storage baskets I have.  This outlet on this wall was the only place the modem, router and phone line can be connected.  And with so many wires, it looked horrible just dangling around.  I fed the wires through the bottom and back of the basket to the inside.....NOW, it is hidden and because it's a basket, I have no interruption of service.  It's all inside!    The other baskets hold a variety of things from around the office that don't need to be out.  So it's my quick fix until I can find just the right piece.  And a guest can still use them as an end table of sorts!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Remember the Transformers post from June 24? Proud Momma!

Well this is the final product!!!  I feel like I just had a baby!  ..Ok, well, not exactly.  We discovered this pretty lady flying around in the screened patio yesterday as a result of the caterpillars I had a few weeks before!             So this......

June 24th
Became this................
 I eventually set her free so she can start the process all over again..... I just watched her for a while flutter around....

Pretty huh?  

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Thankfully Peaceful Thursday

It has been quite the week so far.  I have been extra busy at work because my co-worker is out on vacation.  Ugh!  It has rained every day for almost a week now, so happy about that!
I was here this morning looking at this awesome sounding tropical cake.....I want to make it!  Check it out at:
Come here to see some other great links!
  Today is a PARTY!!


One of my oldest, dearest friends who shares my same birthdate (I call her my twin) is moving to a house right down the street from me this weekend...... so happy about that also!  We were in girl scouts together and I can't wait to work on different DIY projects with her!

It is the weekend for me because I am off every Friday in the summer.....yay!....Very happy about that!

And I am thinking of refinishing an old drop leaf/farm table I have.  Hopefully soon.  It will be the second "re-do", so I will be studying some of my favorite blogs to get some good techniques.

In the mean time, a former HS classmate took this fantastic picture of the sunrise today from Melbourne, FL.  It is so peaceful......enjoy!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Coming Tuesday-My Phone Collection Featured!!

If you have a chance, go see Sarah's blog all about Decorating, Collecting, going to auctions and being thrifty!  She has done some amazing things with turning some discarded items into wonderful useful and fun items!  She has inspired me to really look past the drab!  She goes to the best auctions too!

She will be showing off my phone collection on Tuesday.  She loves collections and seeing what everyone does with different collectibles from all over the world!  She also has a website with some great items to purchase.......Take a look!

Friday, June 24, 2011


I have been rather lazy lately because of the extreme heat and no rain.  Although rain is predicted for the next few days, so let's hope it cools us off and puts out all the fires.  Maybe I will get focused and get back to some good projects!  Otherwise this weird thing happened to me.  I guess sometimes you just have to get with what's going on around you....I like doing that anyway.  I find bird nests, honey bee nests, and one time last week a wounded squirrel trying to hide.....he better or the hawks will get him. (or my dog!)

While weeding the other day I saw a wild passion vine growing through a bunch of palmetto palms.  I really want to get the passion vines growing on my property, so I cut some to root.  While walking with the vines in my hand, I noticed a butterfly following me.  It was as if I took his home away.  Well turns out it must have laid eggs either on the vine or nearby.  So after putting the cuttings in water, I again noticed something weird....caterpillars all over the leaves.  Some big and some no bigger than a pin head.  So I had a to go get more vines for them to eat because that is what caterpillars do before the big transformation.  They are all gone now, hopefully hiding somewhere on the patio and I will see a new batch of butterflies in the next few days..... I will let you know!

One of the caterpillars crawled here and turned in to this!  It is stuck to the wall on the back patio!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Birthday Treat

Thanks Susan over at Naps on the Porch !!

for posting this idea.  I made one last night for a co-worker who likes chocolate and her birthday lunch is today.  She is an odd one who does not like flowers or much of anything at all, so hopefully she will like this!  It's a bit bigger than the one Susan had and I added a "cupcake" type lolipop along with the straw.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Picture Treasures

My daughter....she is so creative and thoughtful.  When we celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary, she decided to create this unique collage of pictures of us and some nice family pictures.  At the time, she found this window looking wall hanging, which originally had a mirror in it.  When working in the retail store it came from she noticed that the mirror was broken, so she asked if she could get a discount on it.  She did, and removed the broken mirror.  She cut a board, attached the pictures, then mounted it back where the mirror was.  We keep it in a hallway in our bedroom.  It gives the pictures a little dimension and covers them just enough to not make them "stand out" just plain on the wall.  We love it.  So if you happen to see something similar in one of the better discount stores, and it looks like it's a little beat up, you can distress it, paint it or use your imagination.  It would make a nice gift for a special occasion!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Just Homemade...

My husband has made so man nice things in the past 32 years that I wish I had a digital camera back then.  I would have to get out my pics from the albums and scan all of them to show him off!  From no on, I will definitely whip out the camera now to catch him at work.  He has some plans upcoming for some things I have saved for him to make.  Here is one he did about four years ago for a specific place we needed a few simple cabinets for storage.  We couldn't find the size we wanted anywhere, so we designed these for the perfect fit.  Since then we moved (of course) and gave one to our daughter for her office and I kept the other for the mud room we now have.  I needed a shelf unit for above it to keep the dogs things, lunch bags, kitchen towels and miscellaneous.  On a trip last year back to the NC mountains, we went to one of the antique stores and found this old top part of a hutch.  It originally had doors from what I can tell by the hinge marks and holes.  We matched the paint from the original cabinet and distressed it a bit.  In honor of father's Day coming, I thought I would show off his handy talent.  I have so much more!  He is a keeper!
In Raw finish- Just 2X4's and plywood

Then stained, painted with a soft black, then sanded slightly to distress in areas and varnished

Look carefully.  I took the dremel and carved out stars in the top

Found the knobs on Ebay

Finished and now.......
...... in the Mudroom

 He also made me these wonderful little business card holders from some scrap oak.  He cut them about the size of a business card and drilled tiny holes and used a heavy duty wood glue and clamped them together.  I drilled tiny holes across the back on the top edge and used my many miles of copper wire to add beads and some frilly string fabric for a whimsy look.  I give them as gifts!
And just something pretty to look at today as my Petunias are looking so nice
 even as hot as it is!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Saturday is in my office!

In my office, which is my hide out, I needed a bed or lounge or big chair.... but ended up finding this on Craigslist.  It was the top part of a bunk bed which someone didn't use anymore.  I bought was cheap and I had a vision.

I got a colorful quilt, a bunch of pillows and a very reasonable mattress.  It can also be home to a guest of my granddaughter. I lay around on it when I am chatting on the phone or hiding from everyone else. 

Now, the space under this bed was very high....higher than the normal bed, so I measured and managed to find five baskets to fill the space which are great for extra blankets, sheets, toys, office supplies or anything you need to tuck away.

Above the "lounge" on the wall are a collection of antique telephones.  And a poster/collage I made by finding high resolution photos online of phone parts, antique phones, etc.  Saved them and made the collage from  That was fun!  Now I have to just finish the rest of my office and I will be happy!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Looking Past the Ugly

I was driving down the road one day in one of my resident towns and saw this garage sale going on so I stopped because I was attracted to this old beat up wood dresser or whatever it is.  Just three drawers.  At the time I was redoing a guest bedroom in a tropical theme, so I painted this to match a wall hanging that had a fish on it that had sunglasses on!  Mostly sponge painted the background then painted the fish on the side.  Sprayed with a clear coat to protect the paint....The rest came from my head and from what my trees looked like in my yard.  I changed the drawer pulls to a wicker type I found at Lowes.  It was fun.

Head over to You will see some adorable things!  Alot of projects give life to old things! The link is on the right.  Or go yo my Party Link tab and look at all of the others!

So... look past the ugly if you see a useful item.  Think deeper.....

This tree on the front was painted from a tree in my yard that blew down in the hurricanes of 2004

It's hard to see, but the fish has on small sunglasses!
Wicker Knobs