Friday, November 30, 2007

Show and Tell - Love Letters

Kelli at There's No Place Like Home has show and tell every Friday and this is what I am sharing today.

These are old love letters my husband, Eric, wrote to me when we were dating back in high school! They are so cute. I keep them bundled together with a pink velvet ribbon and display them on the shelf above our bed. They are not your typical love letters that sound as if they were written by Shakespeare, they are just very sweet from the heart poems like Roses are red, violets are blue. I wrote him just as many and we both saved them all these years. Once in awhile we pull them out to read and we have read them to the boys. Back then I could only dream that I would marry Eric, but here we are thirty years later and we just had our 25th anniversary!
~ Sharon

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

More pictures of the master bedroom

Here are a few more pictures of our master bedroom.

Here is a closer view of the neat wardrobe that I purchased at a local thrift store. The thrift store has buyers that travel to England and pick up tons of old furniture for practically free and ship it here, then sell it for pretty reasonable prices. The story the employees told me is that the people in England don't value these pieces because they are not that old, they are from the 40s and 50s and they have so many really old antiques that are hundreds of years old, so these are almost junk to them. It is hard for me to believe because I think it is wonderful and I am thrilled to own it!

My messy dresser. I found this dresser years ago for only $5.00 and it had a dark walnut stain on it. I painted it cream and sprayed on a gold webbing spray paint on it. I would like to strip it and paint it again, but when???!!! I found the window at a recycle plant and painted it and sanded it. Then I had a local glass/window company measure and cut an old mirror that I had to fit the window perfect. It turned out really cute, but it is sooooo heavy!

Above is a shot of our funny little vanity that is right in the bedroom. I try to be thankful that I even have a powder room attached to my room, but I get really frustrated with no storage room. Can you see the little drawer there on the left, I have three of them and that is it for storage. I do put things under the sink, but it is your typical cabinet under a sink with the exposed pipes, so it is not a great place for storing things.

Above is a picture of the actual toilet and shower area. Eric hung the cabinet and we keep the towels in there. Oh.....I really didn't want to show the picture below.....but thought you should see how bad I am! This is my hidden shame, my dresser top!

I love jewelry and wear different piece almost every day, but when I come home I just throw it on my dresser! What a mess! Eric bought me one of those jewelry armoires, but I am lazy about putting my things away. My goal is to get this cleaned up in the next couple of weeks!
I just wanted to share this idea with you. I saw it in a magazine and it works great! I hung an old pretty china sugar bowl lid on the wall and use it for a hook to hang my outfit that I want to wear the next day. Isn't it cute! I found the neat mirrored cross at a garage sale for .50 cents!

That's all. Now I need to get back to all my Christmas decorating! I have boxes all over the house and need to dig in!

"Thou shalt make thy prayer unto Him, and He shall hear thee......" Job 22:27

~ Sharon

Proud Mama!

Below is a close up of his picture in the newspaper.

I just wanted to share my excitement for my son, Grayson. He received a big honor in football by making the All Conference second team award for defensive back. He got his picture in our local paper, and got a couple of certificates and he got a varsity pin. We are so proud of him! Sorry about the white out on the picture, but I am just being careful and not revealing where we live.
~ Sharon

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Our master bedroom

Here are some pictures of our master bedroom. As you can see, it is very cottage looking and romantic. I did the wallpaper myself years ago. I brought home samples and Eric gave his approval. I tried to pick wallpaper that looked really old fashion so it wouldn't go out of date, it just looks like it is from the turn of the century. It might not be the trend right now, but it is still classic and we like it. It feels really cozy. Eric made the chest at the foot of the bed for me. It was originally in our kitchen/eating area for the kids toys when they were all tiny. Now it holds photo albums and keepsakes. The wardrobe is from a thrift store and I paid under $200.00 for it. This particular shop goes to England and brings home tons of antique furniture and they sell it for cheap. I have all my work clothes in there.

All of the furniture and most of the accessories are from thrift shops, garage sales or antique shops. I love to get old furniture and paint it and fix it up. The bed was only $12.00 (of course the mattress is new!) and I painted it cream and did the shabby chic treatment, which means I beat it up, sanded it and chipped the paint off and then I stained it with a dark wood stain sprayed it will clear varnish.

We did have a cute quilt from Wal-Mart, but I guess you get what you pay for and it didn't last too long. We want to get a new king size bed soon, so I didn't want to invest in expensive queen size bedding, so I was thrilled when I found this bed in a bag set at a garage sale for only $3.00! It looks great and will work for us until we get our new bed!

I found this shelf at a thrift store and did the shabby chic treatment on it too. I added a cherub Christmas ornament and some wood embellishments with hot glue and then painted the whole shelf cream, sanded it and chipped it, stained it and sealed it with clear varnish. I have collected the dishes over the years and got them from a variety of sources. I did order the 3 foot long rose picture from a catalog, but it is just a poster. I had a really large old antique frame and Eric cut it down to fit the roses perfect. I think by doing this we save a LOT of money!

I found the needlepoint at a thrift store already in this beautiful frame for only 14.99! I didn't have to think twice when I bought this wonderful treasure! I collect needlepoint pictures and pillows. I just love how homey they look and I appreciate the work that went into it! I don't know if you can tell, but the background of this one is all stitched, it is a soft robin's egg blue, someone lovingly sat there and made every stitch! The time and talent that went into it just amazes me. The swan is special to me, it is from my Aunt Grace's home after she died. It is very old and up close you can see the crackled pottery. I really think it is special I have some dried hydrangeas setting in it.

I have a few more pictures that I will share in the next few days. We just love our room, it is our sanctuary. The only thing I wish for is more closet space and I really wish we had a bigger bathroom with more storage (you'll see the pictures soon), but overall, I like it. We like to watch TV in bed and it is so fun. I love it at the end of a good day to be all cozy in bed with my husband in our cozy room.

Blessings! ~ Sharon

Remembering Bud

On November 23rd my uncle Bud died. He had been suffering from skin cancer on top of his head that ended up getting into his brain. I don't know his exact age, but he is in his 80s. He married my aunt Josephine (my father's sister) about 25 years ago. He was always such a kind and sweet man. He was a very good husband to my aunt. He loved the Lord and we know he is up in heaven now. We are having a memorial for him this Sunday. Please pray for my aunt and for his children. He will be missed.

~ Sharon

Monday, November 26, 2007

Thank you, dear friends!

I want to thank all of you blogging friends out there for your sweet comments of encouragement and support regarding my previous post. The sadness lifted and I feel so much better. We went to church and had a great afternoon. I started getting some of my Christmas cleaning and decorating done, spent time running in the yard with the boys and the puppy, joked with my husband, made a good dinner and we watched a Christmas movie last night.

It really encourages me to hear how many of you neat women have gone through the same thing. I think it makes it a bit easier just to know that I am not alone, and perhaps I am normal and that most women have gone through these feelings.

A few of you suggested ideas that you do to make yourself feel better after you pray and read scripture, i.e.; baking, taking bubble baths, etc. and I do the same, but then question myself whether this is right or wrong. Am I supposed to pamper myself to get my mood up or trust the Lord? I think if it is something for myself and I have time and it doesn't cost a lot of money (like an expensive shopping trip) than it is probably okay. We can't fix ourselves, we need to leave that to God, but He also gave us a brain to use and I believe He probably wants us to be productive, so it is probably good to pamper ourselves a little to get out of our funks.

Years ago I used to get really blue after Christmas. I don't know why. I think it was because I love Christmas so much and enjoyed it so much with my family, and then it was over. It also meant another year has gone by and a whole year will go by before we have another Christmas and the boys will all be a year older. I used to get so down that we started planning a bigger New Year's celebration so I had something to look forward to. For about ten years now, we have celebrated New Year's at near by resorts and stayed the night. We always go to a place with a pool. We stated inviting our friends Bill and Shannon and their kids, so now we have this really fun tradition that we all look forward too. That definitely lifted my "After-Christmas-blues". I have questioned whether this is good or not. Am I trying to fix a problem myself or am I trusting God? Right now I think it is good because it works and it is great for the whole family and I know that interwoven through all that I do is my love for the Lord. It is funny too that I don't get the "after-New-Year's-blues", I guess by then I am ready to get back into a routine.

Through all of life's ups and downs God is the one and only true constant thing. He has a plan for all of us and He is with us. I am so thankful for such a loving God.

Thank you again to all of you out there with your great love, encouragement, advice and most of all your prayers!

"You have made known to me the path of life; You will fill me with joy in Your presence, with eternal pleasures at Your right hand." Psalm 16:11

Blessings to all of you! ~ Sharon

Sunday, November 25, 2007

I woke up blue today

I am being very honest this morning. I naturally woke up at about 6:45 and as I lay in bed I had an overwhelming sense of sadness. The problem is, I have nothing to be sad for, so where does this feeling come from? It happened a couple of other mornings in the last week. Is it hormonal? Is it the enemy? What is going on? I immediately started praying and started thanking God for all He has done. I got out of bed and got some coffee and read my Bible. I read Galatians 5 where it talks about the fruits of the spirit.

I feel so much better now that I have spent time in prayer and reading God's word, but why does this happen? I have gone through seasons in my life where I can feel that way several times a week over a couple of week's time. It is usually just in the mornings as soon as I wake up and thankfully does not get carried into my day. I don't like it and I pray it won't happen again. It seems like I have not woken up sad in quite some time, so I wonder what made the difference? Maybe it is hormonal. Maybe it is my diet.

Do any of you wake up like that? It is especially weird for me and out of place because I feel so happy in my life right now, God is the center of my life and our home, my marriage is great, all my boys are doing wonderfully, I am close to all my boys, we have the new puppy, we had a beautiful Thanksgiving, I feel good in all my relationships, Christmas is coming, I feel pretty happy with my job. I have my health, I have food, I have a roof over my head. I pray to my Lord and Saviour that this will be lifted and not come back!

Galatians 5:22 "But when the Holy Spirit controls our lives, He will produce this kind of fruit in us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control."

Joy is the second fruit listed. Where was my joy this morning? Joy is by product of serving the Lord and knowing that we are saved, that Jesus died for our sins and arose from the dead in victory over sin. We are forgiven in Him when we ask for His forgiveness. Webster's dictionary says the definition of joy is:

1. a: The emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune or by the prospect of possessing what one desires : delight. b: the expression or exhibition of such emotion : gaiety

2: A state of happiness or felicity : bliss

3: A source or cause of delight

Galatians 5:22 states that when the Holy spirit controls our lives, he will produce this kind of fruit in our lives, a feeling of delight, gaiety and bliss! God's word says this, so I believe it! I need to shake those negative feelings and keep concentrating on His promises!

Our Lord is so amazing because when you start reading His word and spending time in prayer and worship, you feel His presence. I am so thankful that I can go to Him with my troubles. He doesn't always take away our troubles, but He promises that He is there with us when we are going through them and He will never forsake us.
I feel so much better right now and I think it is good that I am sharing this with all of you out there. Perhaps I can help someone by just talking about it and show you that people go through times like this, and also, perhaps, some of you can help me. We are sister's in Christ and should lift each other up and encourage one another.

"Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you." Deuteronomy 31:6

In Him ~ Sharon

Friday, November 23, 2007

Blessed Thanksgiving Day

We started our day with Eric giving Bailey a bath, which she did NOT enjoy!
Then we all piled in the van and drove one hour up to Eric's sister's home, traffic was good at first, but then it was really packed, but thank the Lord, no accidents!
We brought Bailey and she slept all the way up in the van in her little bed, she did great!
Above is Eric's sister standing next to the prepared table. Her and her husband, Jim, hosted the beautiful dinner. I am so blessed to be married into this family! We have such fun together and everyone is so loving and supportive. It is such a blessing that all of our family members on both sides are all saved too!
Eric's mother, Alice, and Hayden

Eric's father, Jim, and my niece, Monique
Mackenzie and Brittany, you can see the boys in the background playing a really fun guitar game on Play Station. All the kids played all day long, I tried it and did not do so well! :0)

Eric and I after a really delicious dinner
All of us playing Dominos. The England's always play games after family dinners, I just love it! It is so much fun! Later we played a fun card game called 31.

I brought a green salad, appetizers (pepper jelly, cream cheese and crackers and smoked salmon cream cheese and crackers) and my mother's traditional Ambrosia fruit salad. Below are pictures. It is such an easy recipe and soooo good!

I always double the recipe, which is 2 cups marshmallows, 2 cups coconut and 16 ounces of cream cheese, all mixed together.
Then add a 16 ounce can of pineapple, drained and 16 ounces of mandarin oranges, drained.
Mix it all up and put it in a pretty bowl and you're done! It is fabulous.

I hope that all of you out there had a wonderful Thanksgiving too!

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever. Psalm 106:1

God bless you! ~ Sharon

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thankgsgiving!

"There is always something for which to be thankful." Charles Dickens


A litany for Thanksgiving

For bright lights and warm fires,
We thank thee, O God;

For good food and the clothes we wear,
We thank thee, O God;

For the love and care of mother and father,
We thank thee, O God;

For friends who come to be our guests,
We thank thee, O God;

For all things you have given us to enjoy,
We thank thee, O God;

For true happiness which comes when we share,
We thank thee, O God.


I will give thanks to the Lord with all my heart; I will tell of all thy wonders, I will be glad and exult in thee; I will sing praise to Thy name, O most high. Psalm 9:1

My wish is for all of my blog friends to have a beautiful and warm Thanksgiving!

Blessings to all of you! ~ Sharon

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

The Day Before Thanksgiving

Last month I shared how I love to take hot chocolate up to my sons in the morning to wake them up and I showed a picture of two Halloween mugs on a Halloween tray. I just wanted to show you the Thanksgiving mugs and tray. This is just a little small thing I like to do for my kids.

Today is my day off and I am heading into town to pay a speeding ticket :0( I got it a few weeks ago. I was pretty shocked when I was pulled over, I didn't even realize I was speeding. It was a clear day and an open road with hardly any traffic and the speed limit had just changed. I have no excuse, but I was definitely surprised! It was $145.00! I am hoping that the judge will reduce it. This is my third speeding ticket in almost 30 years of driving.

Hayden gets out of school early, so we are going to get all the Christmas boxes out and put everything in the upstairs spare room so I can start going through it. I will not decorate until the weekend. I want to enjoy our Thanksgiving decorations while it is still Thanksgiving!

I also am going to get my special dishes out and start making my salads for tomorrow. I feel so behind on my house work, so I am anxious to get this house in order too. The puppy is taking a lot of my time (she takes up all of our time), so I am feeling behind. She also is creating a lot of new messes around here, there are always doggy toys laying around and her bed and food dishes etc., but she is soooo much fun! We just love her! We named her Bailey. She is getting really comfortable and already learning some of the rules!

I hope all of you have a blessed day and a wonderful Thanksgiving!

"Know that the Lord is God. It is He who made us, and we are His; we are His people, the sheep of His pasture. Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. Psalm 100:1-4

In Him ~ Sharon

Monday, November 19, 2007

Does this ad bother any one?

For some reason this advertisement that I saw in the November 11th copy of the Parade Magazine really bothered me. They first show the famous all American picture painted by Norman Rockwell that depicts a wonderful traditional family style Thanksgiving. I think it rings a chord with most Americans and that it is the American dream. It shows a happy family with parents, children, aunts, uncles and grandparents sitting at the table eagerly anticipating the arrival of the turkey to the table that grandmother made. I love this picture, it makes me feel warm and cozy and to me it is something to strive for.

The ad states "Ah, the good ol' days. When there was all the time in the world to create picture-perfect holidays. And when families could enjoy every meal together, not just the big holiday feasts.........Sure isn't how things are today!" Then when you turn the page you see the below pictures.

Now I am not against families getting together for parties like this at other times of the year, or when folks watch football on Thanksgiving, but what bothers me is the food manufacturers are trying to say you don't need to make a beautiful meal and have a sit down dinner on Thanksgiving, the one day we set aside to be with family and to thank God for our wonderful country and for all that we have. Forget the china and crystal, who needs grandma's secret recipe for stuffing, why bother with a tablecloth. You don't have to try to do your best for your family, you can wear sweats and serve hot-dogs. You don't need to make any effort at all, why distinguish this family holiday over any other day?

Okay, if this happens because of unforeseen reasons, perhaps the turkey burnt or your travel plans fell through at the last minute, or you had an unscheduled surgery etc. But why do they have to attack the all American sit down lovely dinner with the family? It just seems like all areas of our lives have gone so casual, couldn't we still keep Thanksgiving a little special?

What do you think?

~ Sharon

Saturday, November 17, 2007

We got a new Puppy!

Last night Eric and Hayden picked out our new puppy! Isn't she adorable! She is a full-blooded border collie. So far she is adjusting quite well. She seems to be really friendly and inquisitive, but not a whiner or naughty. She even lets us know when she needs to go potty and she prefers to go outside! She slept in the laundry room last night and at about 4:00 am she started crying a little, but then she stopped and went back to sleep. We've introduced her to our two cats, Kramer and Sunny and the cats did not behave too well! We will have to work on that. We haven't named her yet, but will soon. We are so happy to have her!

~ Sharon

More Thanksgiving Decorations

Here's more Thanksgiving decorations around our home.

This is a funny little place that I have in the family room that connects to the kitchen. It was the only place we had for a file cabinet, so we plopped one in there. I never know how to decorate it, so I just fill it in with whatever I have. This is the same cute mat that my friend Mareta made that I showed you earlier in the fall and I placed a amber turkey candy dish upon it. Behind them I have two old cast iron candle sticks that I adorned with fall silk flowers and put a tray that I made behind them.

We made these trays in our Tacky group. We all brought an old tray that we painted flat black and simply used Modge Podge to glue on wonderful old Thanksgiving pictures on. We spent the afternoon cutting out the pictures and gluing them on and had ourselves a good 'ole time! It is a pretty simple project and really fun, and it makes a wonderful piece of Thanksgiving art!

Here's my window sill for Thanksgiving. As you probably know by now, I love to change out my window sill decorations for all the holidays and seasons. For Thanksgiving I hung a cute vintage postcard that my friend Jill made me on the center beam between my windows. It is a reproduction postcard glued to black heavy card stock with cute fall colored fringe hanging from it and a wire attached to use as a hanger. I think it is so cute! She is so talented!

I have two Avon crystal squirrel votive holders on each side of the widow sill. I love these squirrels, they are really heavy glass. Avon also made a turkey in the same manner and I have him displayed in the kitchen as well. I have a set of vintage turkey salt and pepper shakers along with a vintage postcard and some Hallmark figurines, two squirrel pilgrims and a cute little mama fox holding a piece of pumpkin pie. I just think they are so cute!

Above is a little corner by my sink and I have a vintage postcard with a wonderful wax squirrel flanked by an amber glass votive holder.

Above is another Gurley turkey candle with another vintage postcard and another candle. I love candles and have them everywhere in my house!

Here is an old vintage turkey cardboard cut out that was probably used for a window decoration or to use in a classroom. I simply used a hole punch to make two holes and tied an antique ribbon for an easy way to hang him from my hutch.

Well that's it! I hope all of you are having a joyful Thanksgiving season!

"Offer to God the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and pay your vows to the Most High." Psalm 50:14

~ Sharon

Friday, November 16, 2007

Show and Tell - Thanksgiving Puppets

Today is Show and Tell Friday at There's No Place Like Home. You should go over to her blog and join in on the fun!

Today I would like to share my Thanksgiving puppets that I made for my kids back in 1996.

They are simply hand drawn characters representing the first Thanksgiving. I drew them on old file folders. I then colored them with felt pens and covered them with clear adhesive shelf paper. After that I cut them out and hot glued skinny dowels on the back. I got the idea from a little farm having "Mayflower Days" where they had all kinds of activities celebrating Thanksgiving. It was such a fun project to do. I typed up a little script that went with the puppets along with some scriptures and poems about Thanksgiving. I made them because I wanted my kids to know the real reason we celebrate Thanksgiving.

That year we had Thanksgiving up at my sister's house (Kathi and her husband Stacey and their three children). Back then they lived up in Washington, so my parents, my sister Kelli and her husband Ralph and their two kids, plus Eric and I and our four boys all went up for Thanksgiving and spent the night at their house. The kids were in heaven!

After our wonderful meal we went into the family room and had a pageant! The kids gave a puppet show and each one got on the "stage" (the fireplace) and said a poem or scripture. It was so much fun!

Below are some pictures that I scanned from that Thanksgiving of 1996.

You can barely see the tips of the kids heads as they were giving the puppet show. I believe that is Cameron to the far left as narator, and Victoria and Mackenzie holding the puppets.

Cameron reading a poem he wrote. Notice the pilgrim outfit!

Little Victoria giving her scripture she memorized, what happened to her shoe? I think that is Hayden's little head in the forefront and Whitney clapping.

Grayson looking pretty happy as he said his memory verse.

All the kids on that special day. Do you think they look happy? :0)

I think that has to be my absolute favorite Thanksgiving we ever celebrated. What wonderful memories were created that day!

Blessings ~ Sharon

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