Small Pleasures, Beautiful Beans and a Fall Collection

Hello again! I can’t believe it’s already almost two weeks since my last post. It doesn’t seem like that much time has passed!

Well, I guess my sewing machine also enjoyed having a long weekend off – a bit too much, I think, because after giving it a well-deserved clean, I started sewing some tea towels for my lovely neighbour as a thank you gift for the beautiful fresh Halibut they gave us a few weeks ago, and it (she?) just wouldn’t cooperate! It kept on snagging here


and here

Grrrr! I adjusted then tension a whole bunch of times and tried all sorts of things (yelling didn’t work, by the way) and eventually, when I was about 2 inches away from finishing the hem, I gave up and decided that tomorrow is another day.

Instead, I made a lovely Jamie Oliver stew for Mr. LoveThat and a beautiful side dish of green beans. I say beautiful, because my family is not very keen on vegetables and Mr. LoveThat is particularly averse to them. So I am always looking for ways to make vegetables so delicious that they can’t resist them. And I came up with this recipe for green beans, or French beans, that had both Mr. LoveThat and my youngest son eating the entire serving on their plate and asking for more! Here’s the recipe 

  • Boil green beans in salt water until they’re just done – try one – if it’s soft and not squeaky when you eat it, it’s done.
  • Drain, reserving a couple of tablespoons of the cooking water, and set them aside to steam dry.
  • Peel and slice 2 cloves of garlic. 
  • Put the pan back on the heat, add a good lug of olive oil and the sliced garlic and give it a stir
  • When the garlic starts to turn golden, add the beans and jiggle the pan to coat them in the garlicky oil.
  • Add a ladleful of the reserved cooking water and the juice of 1/2 a lemon.
  • Stir and simmer for about a minute and them remove from heat.
  • Place in a serving dish and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
  • Serve immediately.

The next day I suddenly realized that we’re already into September and I haven’t even thought about Fall, Thanksgiving or (horrors) Christmas. I needed to get some ideas fast for at least Fall and Thanksgiving table linens. So I spent most of that day scouring my imagination, my garden and the internet for something pretty and fall-like. A couple of my first attempts made even my family wrinkle their noses and give me funny looks (I guess that’s why I call it experimenting), but I eventually found a few things I loved and came up with three different designs

A Thanksgiving set

Mr. LoveThat liked these so much, he wants our own Thanksgiving table to be decorated with them.

A Falling Leaves design

I love the little purple/burgundy design on one of the napkins.

and finally, a kind-of wheat design

I was so excited to get these done, I worked all weekend and most of Monday! I tell you, that really messed up my body clock. I spent most of Tuesday thinking it was Monday and have been a day behind ever since!!

Have a look on my Etsy Store for these.

This beautiful weather just seems to go on and on, and there are still all kinds of things flowering in my garden – the roses keep on blooming

And there are these daisy thingies flowering daily

And pretty Cornflowers along my driveway

And for the first time since we moved into this old cottage, little birds flying around the bird feeder outside my kitchen window.

Maybe they finally figured out that George the cat is too fat, lazy and well fed to hunt them 🙂

So, while I was running errands and grocery shopping on Tuesday (or was that Wednesday?), I heard on the radio that the following day was going to be 32 deg. C and super-sunny, and I realized that this was probably going to be my last chance to get to the beach that I’ve been trying to get to all summer. The minute I got home, I messaged my dear friend Jennifer, and insisted we go. She said ‘yes, yes, yes!’ So yesterday (That was Thursday, right?) I picked her up and we drove to a beach I’ve never been to before – Deep Cove. What an amazing place it is. 

We put our blanket down beside this log

And took in the beautiful scenery

Watched the boats go by (there was a duck too, but he was too far away)

Paddled in the crystal clear water

No sexy life guard today (sigh!)

And found this little guy washed up on the beach (unfortunately, dead)

Being the end of the summer season and everyone is back to work and school, the beach was virtually deserted, but we did meet a couple of ladies who had the same idea as us and we all stood in the water and chatted. It was a perfect day and we were sad to have to leave. But at least I managed to get to the beach before summer is over.

Next week, I have some ideas for Christmas stuff for my Etsy store and, hopefully, I will get round to painting that kitchen wall and finishing my bedroom furniture. There are still a few sunny days left to get it sanded down outside.

I hope you all have a great weekend. Check out the new Fall Collection on my Etsy Shop – lovethat50 and don’t forget to go to our website as there are some lovely vintage ceramics and clothing over there – perfect for Christmas gifts!





It’s true what they say about running your own business – be prepared to work long hours. These past few weeks, I’ve found myself doing my books at 6:30 in the morning, sewing and painting and cutting 8 – 10 hours a day, getting 4 – 5 hours sleep a night because I have endless ideas and to-do lists running through my head, supplies shopping and idea hunting on weekends and then performing my wifely household duties in between. I was beginning to get cabin fever and feeling a little burnt out.

So Mr. LoveThat decided that this Labour Day long weekend was a perfect time to take some time off. Once I caught wind of this idea (he tried to keep it a surprise, but that doesn’t work very well in our house!), I became quite excited – such is life in the fast lane!
On Saturday, I ignored the growing pile of dishes in and around my sink, bought a bottle of wine and an Innis & Gunn Rum Finish bottle of beer (all the way from Scotland) and took myself outside to enjoy the seemingly endless summer weather.

At first, it was hard to just sit there under the trees after so many weeks of being so busy, but I soon found it an incredibly enjoying experience allowing myself to think about not-very-much. It seemed all my neighbours had gone away for the weekend, because all was quiet in my street – heaven! After the very delicious beer (I must buy more next time) and 2 glasses of wine, Mr. LoveThat and I drove to the pizza shop down the road and ordered 2  pizzas. We ate pizza, drank beer and guzzled ice cream while watching a movie. And still I ignored the dishes.

The next day, I couldn’t do it anymore and I did a quick clean of the house (including the dishes). After that we went to our favourite Italian coffee shop in the mall (cappuccino for me).

We dream about and drool over this coffee all week and then treat ourselves on a Sunday morning.

With delicious coffee in hand, we went upstairs to the new terrace food court and ordered crepes for breakfast. Something we’ve been dreaming about for several weeks. The reality was just as we had imagined.

Our plan was to wander through the mall quickly and then have lunch at the Buddist Temple, but we ended up in a long line up at our cell phone provider at the end of which we upgraded our cell phone plans and our cell phones. I am now back in the 21st century with a new smart phone and a better plan. I’m sure I will regret it when I see my phone bill, but for now, the thrill of my new phone and all the things I can do with it outweighs what the phone bill will be in a few weeks. I’m especially thrilled about the camera. My old camera broke when I dropped it and, although I could still use it, I had to hold it together when I took photos which became very tiresome. Poor old camera – it has served me well over the last 3 years. However, the sadness over my old camera very quickly disappeared as I started happily snapping away with my new phone and knowing I can download to my computer (and to this Blog) with ease, is very satisfying. Being a little ‘technology challenged’ I was grateful for the help of my son’s girlfriend, who has the same phone, showing me all the shortcuts and easier ways of doing things. I just love her!

We finally got to the Bhuddist Temple and what a wonderful, peaceful place it is. 

It has a hushed air about it amongst the splendour and tranquility of it all.

We wandered about in awe just drinking in the loveliness and peace, the smell of incense strong everywhere we went and beautiful offerings of fruit and flowers. 

What a lovely way to celebrate life. We were going to have lunch there but to be quite honest, we felt a little out of place and decided to eat at home instead. 

On the way home I had to buy some groceries. I picked up a magazine – O magazine to be precise. I had to stop myself from buying magazines some years ago because it became sort of an addiction. I used to buy them because I loved them so much and then I hardly read them. There would be magazines all over my house and they ended up gathering dust somewhere and eventually going to the recycling.

My love affair with magazines began in my teens when I realized that I could get all the information that I needed from one single magazine. This, of course, was before the days of the internet. Yes, I’m THAT old! I could read about other people’s lives, other people’s cultures, how to get rid of pesky pimples (SO important when you’re a teenager) how to put my make up on, how to take it off, how to do my hair, what books I might want to read, how to cook, how to clean – how to do almost anything really. And there was a crossword that I quickly became hooked on. My mother loved reading and crosswords and through magazines, I finally found something she and I had in common. We spent many Saturday mornings over tea out on her sunny patio doing the crossword together and discussing books. It gave us a bond we never had when I was younger and I am very grateful for that.
I used to love nothing better than to curl up on the couch with a magazine on a lazy Sunday afternoon. But then life got in the way, as it does. Kids came along, a household to run, a demanding job … and all of a sudden there doesn’t seem much time for lazy Sunday afternoon magazine-reading.
So, yesterday, on a whim, I bought the O Magazine because it had a feature about hair (always looking for inspiration on what to do with my unruly hair) and today I curled up on the couch and read it cover to cover and back again, while eating my favourite food – chocolate ice cream. It was wonderful and I felt so relaxed at the end of it. It was almost as good as an afternoon nap – another luxury I don’t seem to have been able to do for many years – I think I’ll try that next!

Today is the last day of our long weekend. I have a few more hours of luxurious nothingness and a couple more glasses of wine to look forward to before I have to get back into real life again (and those pesky dishes). But I feel renewed and relaxed and have a couple of ideas for dish towels and table linen to work on tomorrow.



Getting On With Things

Hello from sunny Vancouver!

I used to be under the misguided impression that if you were a domestic goddess, there couldn’t possibly be bad days. I mean, what could possibly go wrong with performing the daily miracle of running a household?
But my illusions were shattered the other day when I had just that. Well, it wasn’t exactly a bad day, but a whole bunch of things went wrong in quick succession. I had a meeting with my case worker at the government work place thingy so that I could finally start the long and tedious application process to start an ocean freight course. As I’m on unemployment insurance, she is obliged to give me a ‘helping hand’ to aid me in my job search, so she gave me $30.00 in gift cards for the gas station to put gas in my car. What a lovely surprise that was! Unfortunately, it all went downhill from there. 
The gas card was, or course, for a particular gas station franchise and the closest one that I knew of was in my old neighbourhood in North Delta. Not wanting to waste my precious gas wandering around Richmond, I drove to North Delta. There, I discovered, upon attempting to take my cap to my gas tank off, that it was broken and, therefore, stuck. Fortunately, after a few attempts and enlisting the help of a kindly gas attendant (I played the damsel in distress card), we managed to get it off and I put my $30 worth in my car.

Vancouver is a series of islands and in order to get from anywhere to anywhere in the Lower Mainland as it’s nicknamed, you have either cross a bridge or go under a tunnel.
There is one bridge and one tunnel from North Delta to Richmond and, at 1:00 pm on a Friday afternoon, just as I was making my way home, there was a 3-car accident on the bridge blocking that particular route.
This meant that I had to go through the tunnel which was okay, but it was quite detour. I thought of my dwindling gas and joined the rest of the crowd who had exactly the same idea. The good news is that that route takes me past my favourite vineyard and so I decided that I deserved a glass of wine or two after this harrowing ordeal and stopped in and bought 2 bottles (okay, so I decided on more than two glasses of wine!!).

Continuing on my journey home, I came upon yet another long line up of cars and trucks only to discover it was obviously a cargo train’s scheduled time to cross the road. It was a very long train and I almost turned off my engine and suggested a tail gate party to my fellow travelers in front and behind me, using my 2 bottles of wine as refreshment. However, I pictured myself sipping said wine under the trees in my backyard with my hubby, and decided to stay put!

I have been getting on with things, finally. Sometimes when there’s so much to do and you don’t know where to start, you kinda end up, well, doing nothing. But last week I was forced to clear out what’s supposed to be my work room, to make room for my youngest son (he’s 21) who returned from Winnipeg. He says he’s going to find a place of his own (with a roommate) at the beginning of October, but in the meantime, I had to make some space for him. Once I tackled it, I found, as we do, that it wasn’t as bad as it looked. There is a lot of storage in these cupboards in the kitchen/dining area

When we first moved in I stuffed things in there to get them out of the way, and so this was an opportunity for me to really make good use of that storage. For the time being I’m working in the kitchen/dining area so some of that storage is being used for my material and painting supplies.

Mr LoveThat has a huge collection of DVDs and books from his long haul trucking days – they could have their own library room – and these were all in boxes in my work room and getting messed up in the process not to mention taking up valuable work space. So we managed to get them out of the boxes and into this storage space

Our plan is to build shelves in my work room (which is a temporary son’s room) and give them a permanent home.
Then I tackled the dining room table. I bought this dining set (minus a chair – so 5 chairs) at a thrift store for $35.00.
 It was originally priced at $70 and the day I went in they had it marked down 50%. Our old table (now my work table) was very small and terrible for entertaining, or seating more than 2 or 3 people comfortably – so when I saw this, I had to have it. Mr. LoveThat was not impressed as it looked in bad need of refinishing and one of the legs needed fixing and he had to lug it home in the rain – poor thing! But for me, it was love at first sight. He was especially happy to have it when we moved as it fits perfectly in our dining area – the old table would have looked really tiny in there. But, alas, 6 months later, I still hadn’t gotten around to sanding the table top down and staining it. So while I was still in ‘let’s-get-my-house-done’ mood, I did it this weekend. Of course, it wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be. I thought I would just sand it down with the sanding machine and then put a layer of staining on it and, voila! It would be beautiful. But that was not the case (it never is, is it?). I had to sand it 3 times and even then, the stain wouldn’t stick in some parts. After a while, I got a little frustrated with the whole thing and started adding more and more stain in the hopes it would all even out, but it just ended up looking like one big blue mess (the stain I chose was a blue-grey). By this time, I really hated it!
 Still frustrated, I took a damp cloth and rubbed the whole thing down and ended up with exactly what I wanted in the first place – this:

I love it! I wanted a sort of farmhouse look and I think this does it. I still have to paint the chairs and will hopefully start on that next week.

In the meantime, I was determined to strip the yellow paint in the kitchen and add the lettering border I had planned. In 68 years, the walls of this old house are not exactly level anymore. Fortunately for me, whoever painted the yellow, did a really bad job and obviously used the wrong kind of paint as it was already starting to peel off the walls. I used a scraper as sandpaper was doing nothing. Then I leveled it off with sandpaper as  best I could and ended up with this:

I have to fill in the holes and sand it smooth one more time and then I’ll repaint and finally get to the fun part of adding the lettering.
I have to tell you that sanding and scraping and preparing is not my idea of fun. In fact, it’s a real chore – right up there with washing dishes and doing laundry. But unfortunately, it’s a necessary part of the process. Even though I love to restore or upcycle my old furniture and find new uses for old things, I am often tempted to simply visit my favourite store, Ikea, and buy myself a new house! Speaking of which, I am finally going to get my new couch and they have a new colour which I’ve fallen in love with. Originally, we were going to go with this colour
But after a little trip there this weekend, I saw this and have to have it!
Mr. LoveThat says probably another 2 weeks. I’m so excited. I have plans for the old futon. I’m going to paint it a really bright colour, get new cushions for it and use it as a couch for our patio – next year.
This weekend I’ll get the rest of the bedroom finished.
But, back to work. I’ve been thinking a lot about table linen. I’m the kind of person that loves sets of stuff like linens and crockery – tea sets, plate sets, cutlery sets – you get the idea – and, to be honest, I have never come across an entire table linen set. I mean, they sell matching table ware, but separately. Maybe I’m shopping in the wrong stores? You can get a ‘bed in a bag’ but not table linen in a bag. So I thought I would make a whole linen set and sell it as a set – and, of course, you can buy the separate pieces also. Since the ‘Paris’ theme turned out so well and I already have some place mats and napkins made, I thought I would start with this theme and I made a table runner on Friday and painted it today. This is how it turned out.

Here are the place mats and napkins to match

Don’tcha just leerve my “new” table? I will add a table cloth to this, but I’m thinking simply red stripes at each end otherwise I think it’ll all look too ‘busy’ when the table is fully set. Once it’s all together, I’ll do a tablescape for the next blog post and show you how it all goes together. These are in my Etsy store. I have some ideas for other themes which I’ll start working on next.
I was paging through a magazine on French Country décor and came across some beautiful little chair covers. My chairs aren’t exactly chair cover friendly because they are not straight-backed, but I think I can make them work and will post them next time also. They really were very cute.
Until next time …


Gratitude, Appreciation and Bedroom Furniture Makover

Hello again,

Sitting still and doing not-very-much has never been something I could ever do every well. I always have to be doing something – even if it’s just watching TV or reading my Facebook page.

But the last six weeks have been very hectic what with moving and unpacking and all the yard work, and then trying to fit in stocking up my Etsy Shop in between. I also received some bad news about my friend’s daughter who is losing her battle with cancer. And so towards the end of last week, I started to feel a little overwhelmed, as we do, and body-aching tired. Before long, I was on my witches broomstick whining and complaining to the rest of my family that I was feeling more like the hired help (without the paid part) than a member of the family. I’m sure some of you can relate!

And so I decided that I would take the weekend off and do … nothing … and hope that my family would take the hint and help out a little! Fortunately, Mr. LoveThat is an incredibly tolerant man, thank goodness, and he stepped in and washed dishes and cooked meals and tended to our dogs while I languished on the couch and watched bad movies, read my book and played silly games on Facebook. Once I got the hang of it, it was a very enjoyable experience! 

It also got me thinking that the fastest way to feel better about life when one is feeling a little overwhelmed, is to focus on gratefulness and appreciation, and so I started thinking about things I am grateful for and looking around me to get back to appreciating what I have, instead of focusing on what I don’t have (real or imagined!). It turns out that the little things are the ones we feel most grateful for, like falling into bed after a hard day’s work, clean sheets, fluffy towels, our neighbour bringing us fish he caught that day, a cup of tea …

Here are some things that make me feel joyful and appreciative:

The ocean on a summer’s day

Beautiful Japanese Garden to still your mind and recharge your batteries

An ice cold drink

Roses from my garden

Flowers in my city 

Beautiful Sunsets and a moonlit night

Tea lights in jars

The fixings for a simple supper

Restored kitchen hardware

Angels amongst the Clematis

Home made Limincello

Lunch on a patio

The pleasure my dog gets from playing in water.

There are so many more things that make me grateful and feel joyful. You don’t have to look very far at all to find something that makes you feel good.

Let me know what makes you feel joyful and grateful.

So feeling somewhat rejuvenated today, I decided to start on my bedroom furniture upcycling project and began with the night stands, which are all wood. I forgot to take a before photo, but here are two ‘in progress’ photos

And here’s the finished product!

This afternoon I will finish the other nightstand and then begin on the headboard and footboard tomorrow. Hopefully by Thursday, I should have a whole new bedroom!

I have a new cushion I want to work on also and will post it later this week.

I hope you have a wonderful week.


Kitchen Renovation & Learning New Stuff

Hello All – hope you had a good weekend. We’ve had nothing but beautiful sunshine and hot weather, and so, on Saturday, we took some time off from the huge task of cleaning up our half acre yard, and went to a little fishing village down the road from us called Steveston. Steveston is mainly a tourist attraction, but it’s also a great place to buy cheap fish and shellfish right off the boats, freshly caught the night before.

We bought some enormous prawns for our supper

And you can have lunch at one of the restaurants along the boardwalk

And watch the ducks swim by

It’s a quaint little village full of second-hand furniture stores, a craft shop where I buy my fabric paint, coffee shops, ice-cream shops, fishing supply stores and many more. My favourite shop is the garden centre. Not only does it sell wonderful flowers and trees, but it’s also full of all kinds of unique things for your home – things you don’t really find anywhere else.

And so we bought an ice-cream and some mini dougnuts and wandered around to our hearts content. 

In the evening, we cooked the prawns we’d bought at the docks and had ourselves a well-deserved glass of wine! Or two 🙂

The next day we were back in our yard. It took Mr. LoveThat two hours to cut the grass – it had grown so much since he’d last done it two weeks ago, but now it’s manageable. I have all sorts of seedlings coming up in the various garden beds. I’m ashamed to say that I have no idea what any of it is. I say ashamed, because my mother was a very keen gardener and had a beautiful garden. Unfortunately, I did not inherit her green thumb. It looks like little yellow daisies are coming up in one bed and romaine lettuce in another, but time will tell.

Lots of other flowers coming into full bloom

And it seems we have a mole in our back yard!

I didn’t do much in the way of new linen for my business. Some place mats

I was asked by an Etsy customer for a custom order. She wanted four of these tea towels without the graphics in the middle

And is going to use them to create a valance in her kitchen! I asked her send me a photo of the finished product, as it sounded quite pretty.

In the sample above, I had painted the stripes by hand, but it took about an hour, so I went on line (I LOVE the internet) and learned all about painting stripes using frog tape and a little foam roller – much quicker and way cleaner lines. I love that I am always learning new stuff and new ways of doing things.

While I was waiting for her to confirm where she wanted the stripes, I started cleaning off the paint on the kitchen drawers – here’s the before photo

And this it what I found

I don’t think these are the original handles – they look more like 60’s or 70’s, but I quite like them. And then, to my delight, I noticed that there was a little handle on the pull-out cutting board built into the cabinets

After I’d scraped the paint off the screws, I actually managed to take it off and clean it up, and came up with this

This is definitely the original handle from 1945 and it looks like it’s made of copper as there was some patina on the back where water had got in. There are also two hinges on the cabinet doors like this, but they look like they’re not going to come off. I’ll keep trying.

So, while I was in the mood, I stripped off the ugly wallpaper boarder

It makes such a difference and brightens up the kitchen a lot. I wanted to paint some lettering in that space, but whoever painted the kitchen yellow, didn’t prime it properly and all the paint is peeling off! So, of course this means that I have to take off the paint and re-paint. A job for another day.

With all the blueberries we have, I’ve been making muffins like mad, but also made this blueberry, lemon tea loaf. This is the finished product at 6:30 pm one evening last week

  And this is what was left of it an hour later – and I hadn’t even had any yet!

I did finish it off later that even with a lovely cup of tea!

That’s all I have. See you next week and leave a comment – I’d love to hear from you.

Cheers for now


Napkins, Tea Towels and … Bees!

Hi all! Hope you had a great weekend and are well refreshed and ready for the week ahead! I know I’m not. I definitely need more of this today.

Not much in the way of home decorating got done last week mainly due to the fact that I had to catch up of re-stocking my Etsy Shop and needed to work on some new stuff since I hadn’t done much of anything of that nature since we moved in! I did manage to get back into the Pilates and then regretted it the next day! Hopefully, my stomach muscles won’t be so sore this week. 

I made some cool napkins for our own use and for my Etsy Shop. These give the feel of being in a French Cafe drinking fluffy coffee (above) and enjoying the delights of eclairs

They inspired me to work on matching place mats today. Also did these, which I loooove – they are so dainty

I was having so much fun, I continued the Paris theme at the top also

Later in the week, I did these tea towels. I found this design on The Graphics Fairy website. It’s vintage line art. I love tea and so couldn’t resist this

And this one, continuing the Cafe theme

And one to remind me to make Margueritas at some point before summer is over

I’ll be sending a set of these and some napkins to my daughter in Edmonton. She just moved into her first home and these will put a smile on her face.

My plans for going to the beach and buying fresh salmon at our local fishing village, Steveston, went out the window after we started cleaning up our yard and house. 

It looked like a morning’s work, but ended up taking most of the weekend. Here’s the ‘before picture

And after

And before

And after

We found all sorts of junk – old bits of wood, car parts and tires older than me!

And several bees nests, one of which my dog and I stood on and paid the price! Oouch! Mr. LoveThat didn’t escape being stung either!

Inside, I moved the old stove to clean under it in readiness for our new stove coming this week. I don’t think it’s been cleaned in … a long time and I eventually had to resort to scrubbing on my hands and knees! Horrors! After that, I moved all the appliances and gave them the same treatment with disinfectant (good old Pine Sol) and had a go at the bathroom floor and especially around and behind the toilet, for good measure. While I was at it, I washed all the kitchen walls which are now a totally different colour. They look like they’ve been freshly painted!

By the time we were done, we were too tired to go anywhere! My idea of ice-cream on the beach will have to wait until this weekend. Is it Friday yet?

We met our new neighbours – a lovely family who built their enormous house back in the 1980’s and have lived there ever since. The last tenants who lived in this house last year did absolutely nothing to the house or the garden, so our neighbours were so happy that we were cleaning up, they offered us a beer and we talked for hours! At one point, I thought the wife was going to kiss Mr. LoveThat she was so happy with him!

We learned that this old house was built in the 1940’s and given to the servicemen returning from the 2nd World War. I can’t find any photos from that era, but when I do, I will post them.

I made dozens of blueberry muffins with the seemingly endless supply of blueberries from our garden

And started peeling off the ugly wallpaper border in the kitchen. I have some ideas for that border, but that can wait until another day.

And, finally, I saw this jug at our local store and couldn’t resist buying it for my flowers 🙂

Isn’t it funny how small things can be so pleasing? It’s my little treat for the week.

So, back to place mats and other table ware. Visit my Etsy Shop, will ya and see if there’s something that would bring some pleasure to you also.

I hope your week is not too stressful and that you can get out and enjoy the beautiful weather at some point.

Until next week …


Making Headway

Hello fellow Blog Readers! It’s been pretty busy around here lately, although not much actual work has been done and my routine is totally blown out of the water. I am having trouble getting back to the Pilates, but with all the other exercise I’ve been getting clearing the weeds and grass from the garden beds and moving stuff around, it’s probably not going to have too much of an adverse impact. I do resolve, though, to start again on Monday. It’s always Monday, isn’t it? Why don’t we ever start things on, say, a Thursday? Or a Tuesday?

Some semblance of order has been restored here


and here

And the living room is almost complete. We were going to buy a badly need new couch on Sunday, but had to use the money to fence our yard in order to keep our dogs on our property. When I first looked at the house, there was a fence already there, but when we moved in, the old tenants had taken it with them  ??? Our foster dog, MJ, wanted to visit the next door neighbours, but when they saw she had pit bull in her somewhere, they thought she was going to eat them instead of make friends and they voiced their concerns. Welcome to the neighbourhood! So, alas, I still have the tatty old futon for at least another 2 or 3 weeks (at least the dog still likes it!). I did manage to paint the ugly old TV stand and so am feeling better about that, at least.

I even managed to find a place for the old Singer treddle sewing machine and, of course, the endless supply of roses from my garden.

And my mother’s coffee set which I love so much. It was given to her and my Dad as a wedding present in 1949 – Suzie Cooper – and I always loved it. She gave it to me when I left Zimbabwe for Canada in 1998. 

Hung the pictures

I had to move the clock to make way for Mr. LoveThat’s favourite bike picture above Floyd’s tank

But I discovered that, not only did it look better in the kitchen, I needed it there more. Behind that door-thingy in the wall is our furnace.

And, of course, Grandma’s rocking chair from about 1960-something.

I tackled the front garden bed last weekend and discovered this

At least the meter man will be able to read the meter now – I don’t know if that’s a good thing! Also, another rose bush looking very sad, so don’t know if it will survive. Next year I will plant a lavender bush in that space.

Also found 3 blueberry bushes laden with fruit

And a whole lot of garlic growing in a corner

So on the whole, things are shaping up quite nicely.

I managed to clear a space in my work room to at least sew and paint. I bought 9 x 12 feet of drop cloth today. It makes beautiful napkins, cushion covers and all sorts of other lovely things and it’s great to paint on. I thought that the hardware store was an unlikely place to buy fabric, but it cost me $24. 2 metres of the same thing in a ‘real’ fabric store would have cost me $20! So I’m feeling rather smug at present and dying to start work again.

There’s more than enough to keep me busy in this old cottage. The doors and kitchen cabinets and drawers have been painted over so many times that none of them close properly anymore. One of the drawers won’t even open!

and that luuurvley wallpaper border has to go! I peeled a bit off around the corner and found yet another wallpaper border underneath. But it peeled off quite easily, so won’t be too hard to do. All the hardware on the cabinets was also painted over. It looks like the original hardware which could be quite nice, so I’ll soak them in some paint stripper and see what happens. Also, the beautiful old door knobs

Honestly, some people just have no pride in their work to just slap paint over everything.

Well, I’m off for some well-earned chocolate ice cream! No, I didn’t get to the Pilates today (being Monday – I started this blog post on Friday). I had to be out of the house quite early in order to get all my errands and grocery shopping done (excuses, excuses), but I will definitely be back at it tomorrow. I didn’t pick a very good day for running errands. The temperature reached about 33 deg. C – not very good for being in and out of a hot car most of the morning. I really would rather have been at the beach, but I plan to work that in to this week. I call it ‘getting inspiration.’ 

Cheers for now and check back here for pictures of my new napkins and a cushion cover idea my daughter gave me.

See ya later!