Monday, September 1, 2014


Heidy-Ho, Blogging Buddies!

It has been a bit exciting around here the last week of August.  I will provide you with some detail... all weather-related!

On Monday, August 25th, we had a little storm roll through in the late afternoon.  That isn't really unusual for this area due to the proximity to the Gulf of Mexico (bringing in high moisture levels) and the time of year (plenty of heat!).  This little storm, however, was a bit more than usual.  Very heavy winds and lightning made it interesting.  It went through very quickly but what it left behind took a little longer to clear up!

Little limbs and branches down in the front yard.

Larger items (pine trees!) down on the golf course.

Oh yeah... and the electric company's worker the spousal-unit flagged down after the power pole & transformer in our back yard lit up and remained smoldering... with just a little flame for the excitement level.  Oh boy.

A little clean-up of small items down in the yard and things were pretty much okay again.  Nothing unusual and the rain we got was really appreciated... albeit an awful lot in a short time!

I had signed up for the "advanced" furniture painting class at Haven Home Furnishings.  It was scheduled for Saturday, August 30th.  No problem.  It rained overnight Friday night and continued into Saturday.  The class was in Lake Charles, LA, about 45 minutes south of where I am.  The problem with Lake Charles is it is very low and has a tendency to flood in a lot of areas when there are heavy rains.  Hmmmm.  It had been raining all night here and I figured it was raining there, too, but I struck out at 8:30 a.m. for my 10:00 a.m. class, hoping to make a quick Starbucks run before class.  Perhaps I was just a wee bit too optimistic?
After surveying the situation and noting the vehicles that were stranded, I struck out very slowly to the light where I made my turn and proceeded to class.  Skipped Starbucks for the morning (but made it there at the end of the day!) to avoid any further "swimming" through Lake Charles.  The interesting news?  Lake Charles hit a new record rainfall that day... 7.87 inches.  Uh-huh.  Go figure.

After the crazy weather, seems like the "critters" needed to get busy.  The spousal-unit spotted this little fella' so I caught a couple of pics.  I have found about 3-4 more just like him throughout the back yard.

This morning's walk found this critter out as busy as a... well, it's pretty obvious.  :)

So... August has ended and September begins.  I hope all of you had a fun-filled and safe Labor Day!  I'm plotting what project to tackle with my new-found painting skills.  I'll keep you posted on that.

Thanks, as always, for reading!  Until next post...

Thursday, August 21, 2014


 Heidy-Ho, Blogging Pals!

The question asked in the post title doesn't really make sense.  Boredom is typically something that arises when one does not have enough to do.  While that is occasionally the case for me here, it is typically difficult to get even a few hours strung together to work on a project.

That said, I apparently lost my mind at some point and decided there were more cabinets needing attention.  I know.  I know.  You all read my whining and angst over painting the kitchen cabinets.  Some of you were even empathetic (which was much appreciated).  But there were only four doors and it was just a bathroom vanity... how hard could it be?

So... with all good intentions and figuring it shouldn't be a long-term job (like the kitchen!), I casually mentioned to the spousal-unit that I would be painting the vanity in "my" bathroom.  When he inquired as to the color, I told him the same color as the lowers in the kitchen.  Made sense to me... I had plenty of paint still available... the color was perfect to match one of the three tile shades in the VERY retro floor tile.  Why a question?  My mistake.

The good news?  One of the many reasons I love The Man is his interest in my little projects.  The bad news?  We frequently have a lot of difficulty in reaching any agreement about things like color.  Sigh.  But I do value his opinion and when he expressed his concern that I was going to have too much grey in the house, I began working on thinking about another color.

The difficulty factor here was the tile.  Here are a few shots of the original (BORING!) white vanity along with the crazy retro tile color.

You can see the dilemma?  Which color does one work with?  Since I was using a bright teal and a medium grey as the towel colors, it pretty much left me with little or no choice.  I needed to find a teal that would be in the same family as the medium blue color in the floor tile.  Oh... did I mention that the "baseboard" tile you see at the wall end of the vanity is that ever-so-attractive white tile with mottled teal blue splotches?  Yep!  It's a mix of completely different tiles which was apparently quite the trend in the mid-70s.

So... I took out my Sherwin-Williams wheel of color and started searching.  I settled on a bee-yoo-tee-ful bright teal called "Impromptu", #6955 if you are interested.  :)

After a few days of prep, paint, & dry, the newly painted vanity was complete.  Me?  I LOVE the color!!  (Sorry the photos are a bit "off."  Didn't have any natural light coming in this day and it really made a difference.)

 Well, faces are far more telling than words, aren't they?  The Man was very kind with words... in fact, there were very few of them coming from him.  *chuckle*  His face?  Oh... it spoke volumes!!  I let that go and figured I was the one who would be seeing it every day.  I liked the change!  But there were two other faces that viewed the new color.  And both seemed less-than-enamored with my new paint job.  Sigh.  Okay.  So do I want to repaint now when it won't be very difficult... more like adding a third coat of paint?  Or do I want to wait until it is time to sell the house and have to do a lot of prep work?  Nope.  Don't want to do this all over again.  I'll just add the third coat now.  Goodbye flaming teal!!!  I enjoyed having you around.  I will remember you for future projects!

Alright.  Now I am back to what I had originally planned to do!  The deep bluish-grey of the kitchen lowers perfectly matches the darkest blue in the floor tile.  Is it as exciting?  Nope.  Is it a good color?  Of course.  I chose it for the kitchen, didn't I?

Well, sometimes we should just trust our "gut" (a la Leroy Jethro Gibbs) and go with what it tells us.  It might save some time and energy along the way.  But we also might occasionally miss out on a little mistake that tells us something about what we might want to do later on!  If one has the time, I suggest making the mistake if it's not going to be terribly difficult to "fix."  I do urge caution if there would be any major effort required.  It's your call to make.

So... looks like I'm done with the bathroom and have probably had enough to keep me away from "home improvement" projects for a while.  Maybe that's a good thing.  I'm sure the spousal-unit will think so!

Until next post...

Saturday, July 19, 2014


Heidy-Ho, Blogging Buddies!

I see I have been remiss.  It has been over 30 days since my last post.  Things have been busier than usual but that is no excuse, I know.  My apologies.

Today I have a new accumulation of signs to share with you!  Some I have found.  Others have been provided to me by friends (especially Debbie J.) who are always on-the-lookout for me.  Without further ado...

I think the only questions for this first one are "Am I up it, am I down it, and where the heck is my paddle?"

I think it's nice when there is a little more to a sign than just a sign!  How about an octagonal "flower?"

I grew up in the land of church revivals... a big part of the Bible belt.  But I don't recall ever being an attendee at a "Holy Ghost & Fire" Camp Meeting!!  No, I can't tell you any more.  I did not attend.

When you live in the world of "crawfish 4,783 ways", it's nice to know you can pop through the drive-in to fetch a pound or two of the ever-so-delicious mudbugs!

Now this is the kind of church I can get behind!!!

Oh my!  I don't know if someone named this after Anthony Weiner got into so much trouble?

The man pulling this trailer clearly understands "Happy Wife, Happy Life."  :)

I encourage each of you to keep your eyes peeled for the fun that can come from a simple sign.  Feel free to send me any you capture while out in the world.  Always happy to receive them!

There has been cabinet painting (VERY limited!) going on here.  I am waiting on a couple of items to finish the "new look" and will share all as soon as they are in place.  Stay tuned!!

Until next post...

Wednesday, June 18, 2014


Heidy-Ho, Blogging Buddies!

I know.  You don't hear anything from me for a month then I inundate you with pictures and information!!  Imagine how my spousal-unit feels!!  :)

Now then... I was in Lake Charles with a friend.  An acquaintance had mentioned a place there with vinegar and olive oils.  I am a HUGE fan of both so convinced my friend, who is not nearly as big a fan, we should check it out.  We were both VERY glad we did.  They do not have a web site that I can find, but they are on Facebook.  I'm not, but you can find them there.  This place is more than just a vinegar & olive oil tasting spot (although that's my fave reason to go!).  They have a TON of great gift items AND they will put together a basket for you to give as a gift that the recipient will love.  A few quick photos to get you interested:




... AND MORE!!!!

The ladies there are just lovely and will help you with anything at all relative to all the goodies available.  Please support them!

Now then... just three doors down, in Suite 400, is a WONDERFUL place owned by two sisters.  Haven Home Furnishings does have a minimal web site (click on the name which will take you there) but you really need to visit the store to get the full effect of the items and the sisters!  Or you can visit their Facebook page.

We stumbled across it after visiting Crave one day.  We had a wonderful time chatting with Kathi who gave us the lowdown on her history, the store, etc.  She also told us about the painting of many of the furniture items in the store.  Her sister, Shirley, had done it.  That led to a discussion about the paint and the technique.  Next thing you know, she is telling us her sister will be holding classes in the technique soon.  Uh.  Okay.  Being a severely left-brain individual, the thought of trying to paint something really cool (other than the kitchen cabinets which was a VERY long project but relatively simple) was just daunting.

The next time I was there, however, I wandered in to see if I could beg or cajole Shirley into painting a couple of items I have that would really look great with some of the techniques used on some of the items for sale.  She was very sweet and understanding but kept telling me how EASY it was to do what she did to a piece of furniture.  Finally, we struck a bargain.  I would attend the one-day class IF she would agree to do the pieces should I fail miserably at achieving the look I wanted.  Done.  We reached agreement.  It was this that saw me heading to Lake Charles early one Saturday morning for a furniture painting class.  Oh boy.

Well, I will tell you this much.  The class was great fun.  There were three other attendees (all of whom were far more right-brain than I am!) who were very kind to me... encouraging me and taking care of me throughout the ordeal.  I actually found myself having some fun with it by afternoon!  The fear had abated.  Now I just wanted to get crazy!!  :)  So... armed with new knowledge, I am now thinking about exactly what treatment I want to give the telephone table and the two huge chests-of-drawers that belonged to my parents.  They are great pieces but the old blonde wood look just doesn't work for me.  Oh... and there will eventually be an "advanced" class with more techniques!  Dare I consider it?  We'll see.

At any rate... here are some photos of the items that inspired me and one of my mentors in class (Thanks, Linn!).  Please try to get by there when you are in Lake Charles.  You'll be glad you did!!



Please take a little time to go visit both of these places.  They are locally owned.  They are different.  They are fun!!  What else could you possibly want?

Until next post...

Sunday, June 15, 2014


Heidy-Ho, Blogging Pals!

I have heard from a few of you so I know the Avery Island post was liked.  Thank you for your emails!

So... let's move on to the Sunday following Avery Island when my friend, Charlotte B., and I made our way a short distance to Jefferson Island and the Rip Van Winkle Gardens thereon.  This was a very different environment.  Avery Island was very natural with no real "plantings."  It was just as you would find leaving the island... native landscape.  Jefferson Island has been molded, shaped, and planted for some very spectacular viewing as well as having some native landscape areas.  It is also home to the Joseph Jefferson Mansion which can be toured (we chose to not take that tour) and a B&B consisting of three cottages available for rental.  The web site link earlier in this paragraph can point you to information on those.

We were the first to arrive early Sunday morning.  We entered into the gift shop where tickets were sold for the mansion tours as well as for the ability to wander the gardens at leisure.  We obtained our gardens tickets and headed out.  Wow!!!  What a beautiful sight!  As done previously, I am going to just post some of the best shots with captions, when appropriate.  I hope you enjoy the trip!  :)

Wow!  Beautiful views right off the bat!

Old Rip's Oak planted by Joseph Jefferson 1870

And here is Old Rip's Oak... Magnificent, isn't it?
There were some interesting "yard art" pieces there.

Beautiful settings and plants.

These are Crinum plants.  A flower detail is below this.

Charlotte caught this fellow preening himself on one of the railings.  We were told there are 83 peacocks (and I'm guessing that includes peahens) on the property!!

There were other "surprises" to be found throughout the property.

Charlotte worked very hard to get this great close-up of the water lily flower!!
At the base of an oak tree (and the remaining trunk of another) I found a stone with a small plaque explaining what the two oak trees had provided!

The LaFitte Oaks - In 1923, 3 pots of buried treasure were discovered here
We had a lovely lunch at the cafe which was 3-sides glass providing a view from every table.  Absolutely beautiful... and the food was pretty darned tasty, too!

Charlotte's favorite bird is the roseate spoonbill which resides all over south Louisiana but is not easily spotted.  On our way out, we stopped at the rookery area where Charlotte risked life & limb (and her shoes!) to cross a field of grasses and a ditch full of water to get as close as possible in order to capture the following shot using her camera's zoom feature.  You will notice the spoonbill at the upper left section of the tree and, I believe, another one nearly hidden below and slightly to the right of that one.

If you like interesting facts, check out the info on the 1980 disaster when an oil rig punctured the salt dome beneath Jefferson Island.  It is fascinating and some of you may remember it from national news reports!

I do hope you have enjoyed our little road trip.  Charlotte and I had a wonderful time discovering a little more of this state where we were both raised.

Oops!  Sorry.  As I was finishing and proofing this post, the spousal-unit called me to look at the back patio and check out the bird activity.  There were two or three Brown Thrashers and a plain ol' Blue Jay out back hopping about and clearly unhappy.  The spousal-unit pointed out the snake hiding up underneath the bench against the back wall.  Hmmmm.  Dark snake.  About two feet long.  So we tag-teamed it.  He got a piece of bamboo split at one end.  I got the shovel.  We had seen it disappear behind a bag of garden soil against the wall.  The spousal-unit slowly removed items until he uncovered the snake.  I got as close as I could comfortably to attempt an ID.  Black & grey topside.  Uh-oh.  Triangular head.  We may have a poisonous one... looks like a water moccasin.  Yeppir.  That's my opinion.  The spousal-unit deftly caught its head in the forked end of the bamboo and rolled it up like a piece of spaghetti!!  Poor little snake didn't know if it was coming or going.  He took it out to an area with a tree stump handy and very deftly dispatched it.  He buried the head and tossed the remains over the back fence.  Done.  I won't kill a snake unless it is 1) poisonous, and 2) too close to where I'm living!!  This seemed to be both.  I hope it wasn't just a frightened water snake since they are not poisonous and I would have preferred to leave it alone.  Oh well.  That close, you have to make a choice.

Until next post...