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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!!!!

Here's what we'll be doing for New Year's--same house, same friends, new year. We wish you all a very Happy New Year's. May 2010 bring you good health and prosperity.




































Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Grandmother's Kitchen Remodel Extravaganza

My grandmother is having her kitchen remodeled as we speak. What started as a floor repair due to a leaking sink has turned into a full blown kitchen re-do.

My mom, Judd, and I went over to Grandmother's house in Rome, GA the day after Christmas to help her clear out her kitchen for the workers. We didn't get to see what she has picked out for her kitchen but she described it to me while we were there and once we got home over the phone.

She said her cabinets will be solid wood with a rope design in a cinnamon stain. I believe the wood is maple. She is going today to look at tile flooring. Since we live 2 1/2 hours away from her we can't be there to help her pick it all out. I thought I would make a post about it so that she might be able to pull it up to get ideas and some help.

I doubt she will put in real stone counter tops but she can at least be on the look out for a corian or laminate with a similar look.

She is also having the workers scrape her popcorn ceiling and paint it, install pot lights, re-wire her kitchen, replace the doors that cover her washer and dryer closet, hang a new light fixture, and put down new hardwood flooring or hardwood looking laminate flooring throughout the rest of her house.

I can't wait to go over there to see the finished product and to help her get her house reorganized.

I don't have any "before" pictures of her kitchen to share with you. But, from her description here is what I think would look best with her cabinets.

I am gathering that her cabinet stain is similar to this in color. Also, this is the rope design that will be on them.

Grandmother has rubbed oiled bronze hardware in her guest bathroom and I think it would look nice to carry it into the kitchen. Her house is rustic (It has cedar on the outside and a cathedral styled great room with exposed beams on the inside).

I think a medium sized travertine tile back splash would be pretty.

Or perhaps this small sized travertine for a back splash.

I think this granite (kashmir gold) or a similar looking counter top made in laminate would be pretty. Of course I would normally prefer real stone and will recommend it to her, but she is 85 years old and may find laminate more economical and easier to clean.

Here is an image of another similar granite called madura gold.

This large tile in similar colors would look nice on the floor.

However, I saved the best for last. I think this type of flooring would be beautiful! I don't know what it is called or where to find it but I think it would be worth looking for. I believe it is concrete tile.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Blogger Christmas Open House

Merry Christmas to all. Welcome to our electronic Christmas Open House. I wish we could have you all over for egg nog and cookies. Instead, we hope you enjoy a quick tour of our humble home decorated for the holidays.

Come on in...

This garland around the door was such a great deal. Judd stopped by one of the local tree sales and found 25 feet of live garland for $25. I was planning to make some garland but when he called and told me it was $1 a foot I asked him to purchase it right away. We had enough to go all of the way around the door, over our mantle, on the table as a centerpiece, and enough to make a wreath for the front door. I hope we can find this same deal next year.

The garland was elegant by itself but I added some pine cones and white lights in order to help it blend in with the rest of our natural theme.

The wreath is just a snippet of the live garland wired around a plain grapevine wreath I made with Judd's mom from vines in her yard in South Alabama. I tucked magnolia and nandina leaves all around the wreath. Finally, I wired nandina berries to the bottom center. It was a simple and very cost effective method for decorating our door.

It's cold outside, hurry on into the house.

This is our living room. Our stockings are hung by the chimney with care, our packages are wrapped and under the tree.

Our mantle is decorated with another piece of the live garland. It has pine cones, nandina, magnolia, clementines, and white lights tucked into it. Silver and glass candlesticks flank each side of the fireplace.
Our stockings, which I posted about here were made my mother and me. Well, let's be honest, it was mostly all her. I helped cut the burlap and lining fabric, had the names monogrammed, and stitched on the name and ruffle. Mom pretty much did the rest of the assembly herself. I was amazed as she (without a pattern) recreated the look I wanted from the picture in the Ballard design catalog. She added cording, a ruffle, a free hanging lining, and hooks to hang them. I am amazed by her creativity and sewing capabilities. I know she will be a great teacher as I continue to learn to sew.
We bought enough fabric to make two more stockings for down the road when we have little ones. Cole only got a dog bone on his stocking. We figured since he can't read this would be the best way for him to know which stocking is his. :) Also, for longevity purposes we can use this stocking for all of our pets for years and years since there is no name on it.

Our tree is placed in the corner of the room. It is decorated with burlap ribbon from Ballard Designs, white lights, pine cones, and cream, brown, clear and mercury glass balls. It also has a few sentimental ornaments hanging on its bows. The tree skirt is a simple piece of burlap folded in half and placed in a round shape at the bottom of the tree.
Our packages are wrapped with brown craft paper and embellished with twine, mini pine cones, and an assortment of vintage looking gift tags.

Now let's go into the dining room.
Our centerpiece is made with a portion of a wooden barrel as a base. It has live garland, pine cones, magnolia leaves, and silver shatter proof balls from Ikea on top. Above the china cabinet is a vase filled with dogwood branches and an assortment of cream candles. (Oops, I forgot to light those candles so you'll have to pretend.)
Here is a view of our side board along the front wall of the house.
This piece of furniture hosts our hurricane glasses filled with nuts and candles. If you remember this was an idea I came across around Thanksgiving. It worked for both holidays. We've really enjoyed the soft glow of these candles while dining.

And last but most definitely not least is our nativity scene placed as the central feature on the corner shelf in our dining room. My mother-in-law gave this to us during one of our first Christmases as newlyweds. I love it! It is certainly a good reminder of what we celebrate on this sacred holiday.
Merry Christmas! We enjoyed having you over to our home. Come back soon!

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Stalking Continues

I haven't stalked Judd's cousin, Richard Keith Langham, in a while. I figured now is as good a time as any.

You can read about Keith from my earlier posts here and here.

I really would love to get them together. They both have an eye for design. While Judd's talents are more exterior focused and Keith work is on interiors I still think they would have a great time talking art, design, and creativity. Keith, when are ya gonna be in Brewton?

(I feel I need to put a disclaimer that I don't know Keith at all. That is why I e-stalk him from time to time. Also, Judd is considerably younger than Keith and doesn't really know him well. I just really enjoy looking at his work and I love the fact that these two cousins share such a passion for making the world a more beautiful and pleasant place.) I think they favor one another don't you?

This is an article in Southern Accents of which Keith was featured. It consists of a rare books aficionado, Kinsey Marable's, home in Georgetown that Keith designed. You can read the article and view the images at a larger size by clicking here.

I enjoy looking at the English designs Keith creates. They all seem to have a certain southern flair. Sometimes his designs are a little heavy for me but I appreciate them none the less. But, who am I to judge. Ha. I haven't really the slightest clue about good design. I just like to look and pretend.

(PS: Blogger help: How do I make images that can be enlarged by clicking on them? And how do I post images larger than the ones pictured below?)

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Seriously Amazing

This is an amazing Christmas display. It blows my mind. I can't even wrap my little brain around how this is all put together. It was created by an Auburn alum who lives in Texas. Even if you are not an Auburn fan you can appreciate this (just continue listening past the first song). Merry Christmas and WAR EAGLE!

Click here to watch in wonder at this beautiful and amazing Christmas show.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

I survived

Well, I survived one more semester of my Ph.D. program. I just got my grades and I liked what I saw. :) I really needed this two week break from school for Christmas. It couldn't have gotten here soon enough. I just finished the following courses:

EDL 701
Organizational Leadership and Decision Making I

EDL 703
Theory/Practice Supervisory Leadership

EDL 724
Educational Leadership Seminar I

Can I get an Amen or a Hallelujah that these classes are over? ......AMEN ......Hallelujah!!!!

Now on to semester number 3. Counting this one coming up, only 10 more to go. Ugh.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Merry Christmas

It is a shame not to be able to personally send Christmas cards to everyone who reads this blog. Here is our card for your electronic viewing pleasure. May you and your families have a wonderful and blessed holiday season.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Christmas Ideas

I have been trying to "get my Christmas on" these last few days. I didn't finish with my coursework until Monday night at 10:30pm. My doctoral program and working full time have really interfered with holiday decorating...go figure.

I do have the tree decorated with the burlap ribbon I ordered (which I love), cream, brown, clear and mercury glass balls, and pine cones. I also (with lots of assistance from my mother) have some burlap stockings made as well as a tree skirt.
I don't, however, have any garland made or purchased, have a single wreath anywhere on or in my house, have any lights outside, have the table centerpiece assembled, have my mailbox decorated, or have any presents purchased. Hopefully I can use the rest of this week and the weekend to accomplish these tasks. I found some images of things that I would like to recreate in my own home. See below.

I am really enjoying our more natural decorations. I think they are understated, comfortable, and timeless. Once I get my own decorations up I will post some pictures of the Langham's little Christmas cottage.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

We Were Dreaming Of A White Christmas...

...for this little dog.
Cole experienced his first snow this morning. It is rare to get snow that sticks in Birmingham, AL. I feel like Jack Frost and Father Christmas truly blessed us this year. Judd and I saw the flurries begin about the time we went to bed last night. We didn't really think it would stick. We awoke to a beautiful scene this morning. (Jamie and Terri, if you are reading this feel free to laugh at our modest dusting.)

We opened the door and out he went. He was a little unsure at first.

He took a few steps to test the waters or in this case cold sticky stuff on his paws.

He looked over at his water bowl and became perplexed. What is this hard stuff in my bowl?

He decided this snow stuff might be fun. We headed for the grass in the backyard.

It sure is so much brighter out here when everything is white. Squint.

Daddy would you like to play soccer? huh? huh?

After a quick reenactment of the movie Air Bud we went back through the house to the front yard.

We paid homage to our alma mater and then proceeded to throw snow balls at each other....and Cole.

He loved playing with the snowball and hitting it with his big webbed paws like it was a hockey puck.

Next we had a tasting.


Once Cole had his fill of snow he came in and appropriatly found a great napping spot under the tree.