Friday, December 31, 2010

Randomness in the Warmth of a New Year

Today's temps were in the low to mid 60's today, and although that doesn't feel quite right for a New Year's Eve, it did make for a productive day. With the garage door open and Gideon dozing on the front porch, it was easy to start the chore of taking down Christmas decorations.

Next year Harleigh will be living off-campus, getting an apartment with sweet Anna, a new friend this year and one who lives close by us, in Roswell. We've started brainstorming about the apartment. We will have a lunch with Anna and her mom within the next couple of weeks and will talk about the living area of the apartment — couch, tables, lamps, etc. But in the meantime, we've started thinking about Harleigh's bedroom and bathroom. And when I say "thinking," I mean "thinking thriftily." We'll begin now, amassing furniture and decor; much easier on the budget that way. And so we went to several thrift stores a few days ago and found this dresser for $60. She fell in love with it and it's now in our garage. I love how the drawer pulls are not all the same. She wants to keep it black and white, and it's a piece that will stay with her forever and will probably enjoy many coats of paint in its lifetime.

After picking up the dresser today, I had to (had to, mind you) stop in Goodwill. It was, after all, right next door. Found these Strawberry Shortcake pillowcases (Harleigh will love them).

This Shabby Chic queen-sized duvet cover.

Two homemade Christmas tablecloths. Can never have too many of these.

And this Holly Hobbie fitted sheet (another for Harleigh's bed). And all of these for under $15.

I should have known I'd have good linen luck today. It started this morning when I met Sarah for coffee. A friend I've always felt a special connection with. And although we don't see each other or even talk all that frequently, we pick things up as if we've never been apart. I cherish every word we exchange. Here is the sweetest of kitchen towels she gave me.

Happy New Year to everyone who visits me. May 2011 be a special one, in ways we don't even know yet!

With love,

Dawn E. Girl

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Gideon and the Couch

Yes, I'm one of those people who lets the family pet sleep on furniture. Granted, he must be clean, and preferably smelling just bathed. He's not opposed to camping out on the floor peering out the front window, or nestled in his bed next to the faint whirring of the refrigerator. He does, though, love him a good couch (and the ease of being able to wash slipcovers makes me happy).

Monday, December 27, 2010

Advent Matchboxes

Last Christmas I made one of these for Amanda, my work Secret Santa. It was such a fun craft to make, and so appreciated by the soon-to-have-baby-Bryce mama, that I decided to make one for my sister Karla, pregnant with her first, a little boy. I chose a cookie-patterned scrapbook paper that makes me think of my mom and the tradition of baking and cooking that she's passed on to us all. And to the Matchbox car I crafted a teeny tiny wreath which ties to the family tradition of my Dad putting wreaths on the grills of all of our cars on Thanksgiving.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas Eve and Christmas Morning

On the Eve of Christmas Harleigh and I started a new tradition. In the past I've always been the holiday baker. But this year dear girlie asked if we could make cookies together. She chose Iced Molly's (a recipe from my co-worker and dear friend Molly) and ritz/pb/chocolate cookies. I usually don't tackle rolled and cut cookies, but Harleigh was all over it, having been to a friend's house the night before for a sugar-cookie-making get-together hosted by friend's mom. The tips she picked up yielded us some of the prettiest cookies to come out of Chateau Gahan. And I got to spend some time with one of my favorite people in the whole wide world!

Here are the Iced Molly's. Harleigh chose blue for the glaze and I think it's the loveliest shade of blue. And they taste divine!!!!

We also made these yummy cookies. You take two Ritz crackers, spread peanut butter between them, then dip them into chocolate. I usually do a batch of milk chocolate and one of dark. Let them cool on wax paper, then refrigerate. Easy peasy.
Tubs of goodies ready to be delivered to neighbors!
Christmas morning and Giddy finds a gift from Santa!

Merry Christmas to all!!!!!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Seashell measuring spoons and a super special gift!

Ali (dear friend, designer, photographer) stopped by the office yesterday so we could exchange gifts. She got me these adorable seashell measuring spoons, sure to be used as I continue The Gahan Girls baking extravaganza (Harleigh's talked me into making two more types of cookies tomorrow!).

And then she handed me a gift she swore was from Santa himself :-). She and husband Matt gifted me with his Canon Digital EOS Rebel, one they don't use, and, most sweetly and fittingly, the one that Ali used to school herself in photography. All I need to get is a lens. Ali is bringing me all of hers to test out before I make a purchase. I'm chompin' at the bit to get started, visiting her blog (and all of its amazing photography) for inspiration.

That Santa . . .

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Cheer at the Office

Thank gosh I have a boss who lets me indulge in making the office feel homey at the holidays. Everything from the foamcore fireplace to the afghans on the leather club chairs.

This is our office tree, a real beauty. And I've got the best cubicle in the house; this is my view. And the smell is heavenly.

Monday, December 20, 2010

And to All A Good Night

Crafting Christmas gifts, holiday parties, seeing out-of-town friends who are home for Christmas, baking, shopping. Got a good part of the baking done for Harleigh's little-red-wagon deliveries to the neighbors. This year I'm doing: spiced pecans, candied pecans, cheese straws, white chocolate peppermint bark, chex mix and vanilla glazed mini scones. I wanted to do a nice variety of salty, sweet and spicy goodies.
By Sunday night I was ready to chill. Harleigh — home from a weekend full of catching up with friends — and I watched Charlie Brown Christmas and The Snowman, she went to bed, and I got to workin' on reorganizing my recipes. Gideon fell sound asleep (when he's super tired he sleeps in what we call the scissor position, with his front legs crossed with his back legs; that's his front paw peeking through his back legs) and all was well at Chateau Gahan.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas Morning at the Unboundary Homestead

Our holiday gift exchange at the office, lovingly dubbed Christmas Morning at the Unboundary Homestead (and it must be said in its entirety; none of this shortening stuff, or worse yet, calling it something completely different altogether). The gals at the office do all the breakfast cooking, so there's a good, hot meal awaiting everyone when they arrive at the office. The fireplace is lit (in our case, plugged in). I bring in afghans from home so that chilly ones can snuggle with a blanket while we open gifts. Christmas music plays. All are encouraged to wear their jammies to work that day. And, of course, Santa arrives (thanks to co-worker David for doing this every year) to pass out the gifts, a heartfelt assortment of homemade and store-bought presents. And we take turns opening them, one person at a time. And in a design firm of super creative and smart people, the gifts never cease to amaze.

This year I picked Laura. Score!!!! Within minutes of drawing her name, I had a vision. Ya see, this girl is super creative and enjoys a wide variety of hobbies, everything from spinning her own yarn, to DragonCon, to SCA (an international organization dedicated to researching and re-creating the arts and skills of pre-17th-century Europe). In addition, she loves all things India-related (often donning saris to the office). I initially decided I wanted to make her a mirror, but finding a thrift-store mirror with a deep frame (for lots of room to decorate) proved fruitless. I did find one though at Goodwill with the perfect width frame, but the center was a plexiglass sort of sleeve. Plan B hatched.

Off to Decatur, home to a wealth of Indian groceries and stores. I found an Indian calendar, free, which slid perfectly into the plexi sleeve. I created a cardboard back for the calendar, complete with a tab, so that Laura can pull it out and rip off the top month, sliding it back in to showcase the next month. The wooden frame began as a shiny primary green, but I had in mind a peachy, fleshy kind of pink.
The perfect color was found, the frame was painted, and then I began to pimp it out with as many Indian-related things as I could find. I just happened to have a stash of Indian matchbox labels that I bought years ago, thinking they were neat but having no use for at the time. Perfect. I cut out pictures from an old book, slices of Indian maps from an old atlas, added jewels around the inside of the frame, and stuck on this pink frame with Lakshmi, the Goddess of Good Fortune, as the focal point (who rather resembles our own dear Laura).

Molly got my name. The story behind her gift to me has its humble beginnings in my office cubicle. I've been with this company for going on 15 years and always been deemed a very approachable person. I keep classical music on all day (although now it's Christmas and more Christmas tuneage). And I've been told that my office has great ch'i. For these things I am grateful. In my position as Traffic Manager, I deal with everyone in the company and keep super busy, and people pop in constantly to talk both work and to chat (venting, soliciting advice, passing on a funny story, whatever). I try to keep the chatting to a minimum, but have discovered that for many people, just coming into my office and sitting, just sitting, is all they really want. A co-worker will come in, take a seat, announce that they just need to sit, and I'll continue to work, no conversation to be had, a simple therapeutic dose of calm.

I purposely didn't put a chair in my office because I didn't want to encourage people to camp out, so I opted for a stool. It says "please come in and sit, but don't make it for too long." The running joke is that I should charge to sit on the stool, as I've often had a line of people hovering outside my cubicle awaiting their turn. And so Molly came up with this idea for my Secret Santa. I love it! A sign for my wall and my plain wooden stool all dressed up with a cushioned slipcover and ball fringe.

And here is the stool in my cubicle. The doctor is in.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Felt Poinsettia

Tricia over at A Rosy Note further inspired me (a couple posts back I re-created her tub of poinsettias) to craft this felt poinsettia. I looked everywhere for a pattern, found none, and so created my own. For the center I used a rhinestone pin. I've never used fabric stiffener before; twasn't as easy as I thought it would be. Took forever to dry; maybe I had a cheap brand. Anywho, turned out lovely.

Cuckoo Clock Pendant Watch

A co-worker wore this to work today and I just had to get a picture of it to share.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Prayer Pal Gets It!

This morning at a lovely breakfast at the church, Prayer Pals were revealed. Each of us gifted our Prayer Pal, topping off a year long of praying for her. My Prayer Pal, Lynne, has been not only praying for me and Harleigh but sending me notes and gifts of encouragement, reminding me always that I am foremost in her prayer life. Doesn't get any better than that. Lynne loves all things vintage and crafty (as do I!) and so her gift to me screamed of vintage. While all the other ladies got new items, I got two old things. And nobody better than Lynne to understand that THAT is gift giving at its finest amongst us vintage gals. Here is my new (old) pitcher and rick rack. Thanks so much, Lynne!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Melamine Elegance

Found this small oval plate at Goodwill over the weekend. Went to pick it up. And it's melamine!!?!?!? The manufacturer is ShunTa out of China. The collection includes everything from coffee cups to rice bowls. Too pretty!!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Christmas Pink

Just when I thought my humble abode couldn't ooze any more estrogen, I glommed onto the idea of pink poinsettias. Inspired by the post of a blog I just started following, A Rosy Note, here is her staging of peachy pink poinsettias that I did my own variation on. Instead of a galvanized tub, I used a baby blue enamel one I have on hand. And while her flowers are real, I opted for the on-sale-at-Michaels-50%-off-silk variety (complete with glitter). All in all, the perfect addition to my girly living room.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Yes, Virginia, there is a Christmas butterfly

Just couldn't find the right bow to put on our front door live wreath. And you know me . . . when all else fails, stick a butterfly on it!

I found this vintage doormat at a thrift store.

You might also like . . .

Related Posts with Thumbnails