Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

I am thankful to finally post again!!! Where the dickens have I been??? Doing some of this and some of that, reading books and magazines, shopping for Thanksgiving dinner and going crazy at work with lots of deadlines with everything due at the same time! Ugh!!! I am happy to be back and I have sooo much to say, so many pictures to share, so many things that have happened that I need to write about.

It was such fun to set my table for Thanksgiving dinner. I bought a new gold damask tablecloth yesterday. I love the way my table turned out.

We had a small group this year, but what was nice is that we all fit at the table. Usually we have the kids sitting around a separate table in the living room. That's what one has to do when they live in a small place, yet still love to entertain.

Rachel made adorable place cards. The inside says, "Gobble Gobble".

And the food didn't look too bad either.

I also made the Friendship Cookies that were shared by Joanne Kennedy from My Little Cottage in the Making. They were so good, I had to make a double batch because everyone really made a dent in the first batch. I made one adjustment - switched the chocolate chips for cinnamon chips (whoever knew there was such a thing??) They were a HUGE hit!!

I just have to share my most recent purchase. I bought this lamp recently through JC Penney's. This lamp is only available online and I just loved the picture they showed of it. It took me about half a second to decide I had to have it, but was very dismayed when it was backordered for over a month. It just came last week and I am so happy with it.

Thanks for staying with me during my little hiatus. I totally flunked out of NaBloPoMo, but I had good intentions initially. I'm anxious to share lots of info, so stay tuned. It's amazing how much can happen in a couple of weeks.

Happy Thanksigivng one and all!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for my faith. I am thankful that I believe in God and Jesus Christ and that I try to live a life of goodness, peace and thankfulness. Someone very close to me said something that was very disturbing. I could not imagine not knowing my ultimate destiny. That brings with it a certain peace, knowing that things can happen, but one way or another, I will have the strength to endure because of my faith. And for that, I am truly thankful.

Thank you to Rhondi for hosting Thankful Thursday. Be sure to visit other contributors here. It always makes me feel good to read what others are thankful for also.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

What Kind of Camera Do You Use?

I want to buy a new digital camera. I am so amazed at some of the pictures people post on their blogs and I want to have beautiful pictures too. I currently use a Kodak EasyShare camera. I probably bought it about , umm, maybe four years ago?? Well, it's ancient now, right? I've been looking at different cameras and think I've decided which one to get based on ease of use, speed, optical zoom and, of course, price. I think this is the one I want.

My friend, GratitudeGal, just got a new camera for her birthday and that inspired me to do some research to find one best for my needs. Hers is very nice, but more than I can spend right now.

What kind of camera do you use? Do you recommend it, or do you have a good suggestion? There are so many out there and I'm just not into figuring out all the technical stuff. I want to turn it on and shoot. I want it to fit in my pocket or purse and not be too cumbersome. I want it to take beautiful pictures of whatever my heart desires. And I don't want it to break the bank. Comments welcome!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veteran's Day

My father-in-law was in the Marines for twenty years. He served in Vietnam. My brother-in-law was in the Marines for twenty years. He went to more different country's than I can remember. My niece was in the Army for four years. She met her husband in Iraq. They returned to the US, finished their commitment and stayed in the area where they were stationed and worked as civilians. They had a very happy life until one day her husband went home at lunchtime and was killed in a motor vehicle accident by an officer that ran a red light.

You can spend years and years fighting on the front line or doing whatever else is required as you serve your country and then you come home, where you think it is safe, where there is not a war, where you can relax and live a peaceful life and you go home for lunch, but never make it. Your new wife is left alone to try to pick up the pieces and make sense of life as we know it and life as we don't. It's interesting the pebbles that are thrown in our path as we make our journey through life.

Monday, November 10, 2008


I am a human resources manager of a healthcare staffing agency. My company is owned by a very large corporation that owns numerous hospitals throughout the country. I hire nurses as often as possible and provide them with an orientation before they can actually start working. I would think most large companies do the same thing.

Part of our orientation includes a segment on ethics. Each new employee needs to receive an hour of ethics training upon hire and each current employee needs to come back annually for an ethics refresher. Isn't it amazing that this even needs to be done at all?

Why do we have to "teach" people to be nice to their coworkers because every position is vital to the success of any facility? Why do we need to teach people to bring their concerns to the appropriate management-level person if they feel they are being treated unfairly, rather than "stir the pot" with their coworkers? Why do we need to encourage people to be honest with their interactions so they serve as a real mentor and help others grow?

Didn't we all learn this stuff as kids? Did we forget it along the way? What happened along the way that we would forget the basics like kindness, honesty, integrity and respect? I'm sure the majority of people have not forgotten. I guess we teach these things for the few that don't remember ethical behavior. Because one person can make a difference.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Simply Sunday

When I was a little girl, I always thought my dad could do anything. Don't most little girls think like that? No matter what question you asked my dad, he always knew the answer. He always did the neatest things. I would like to share with you one of the really cool things he did all the time at my childhood home.

My dad was an electrical contractor. He could fix anything around the house, but he was a real pro when it came to anything electrical. My mother always hated wires hanging from lamps. My dad would take a little cafe rod, like this one below.

He would very tightly wrap the lamp cord around the curtain rod, like this.

And this is how it would look when you took it off the curtain rod.

Doesn't this look nicer than a long cord hanging all over the floor? Thanks Dad!!

I went back to Home Goods today to get the lobster ornament that matched the crab I got last night. Rachel tells me it's not a lobster, but a yucky scorpion. It is gross, but it still looks good with the crab.

Of course I had to browse a little more as I had some time to kill. Poor me!!!! It was just heart-wrenching to drag myself throughout the store looking for more treasures!!

I bought a very pretty white feather-type Christmas tree at JC Penney's a few weeks ago. I told Rachel I wanted to decorate it with all tropical ornaments. These little fish will look very pretty on that white tree.

I also picked up two packages of this garland. I think this will look nice also.

I want to decorate this little tree (I think it's 36 inches) in Key West colors - pink, lavender, lime, turquoise, yellow. We already have a lot of tropical ornaments, so it will be fun to pull everything out and see what's there. I think I'll put the crab and scorpion under the tree along with anything else I can find along that line.

Our home is small, but we still put several trees up for Christmas. The traditional family tree with lots of memories goes in the living room. The tropical tree will go in the dining room. Rachel has a purple tree for her room and I have a Victorian tree for my room. I will share all of them with you when we put them up right after Thanksgiving.

I also found this pretty tray at Home Goods today. I just love it, but it will make a wonderful gift for my mother-in-law. This is just her style and I know she will be very pleased with it.

I had a fun day today, though I never did get around to revamping my curio cabinet. It was a gorgeous day and I wanted to enjoy it. Hope everyone had a great weekend!!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Playing House

I had such a fun morning today. I emptied out the top of my china cabinet, cleaned everything real good and replaced the contents with my Christmas dishes. It was such fun!! My mother-in-law calls that "playing house". I still want to do a couple things, but this is how it turned out.

Another view . . .

And another . . .

I had such fun cleaning things up and displaying them. Like my Irish Santa . . .

My trio of angels . . .

More Irish Santa's . . .

I have dear friends that each year give a unique Neiman Marcus gift. Last year it was this 100 year anniversary plate . . .

And my ruby glass goes perfectly with the green Neiman Marcus plate, don't you think?

Guess where I went tonight???

Wanna see what great treasures I scooped up???

I love this Santa. I love the soft, muted colors and the glitter. He will look divine with my Santa collection. He was only $7.99.

How about this?

I was born in July so my zodiac sign is Cancer, the crab. I usually buy unique crabs when I see them and I could not pass up this beauty. It's a tree ornament, but I don't think I will hang it on the tree. They also had a lobster and I cannot believe I left it there. Needless to say, I will have to get back there first thing in the morning to claim it. I closed the store tonight, so if I'm there when it opens, I should be in luck!! I just love this little crab. There is such detail and it was only $3.99.

Tomorrow I shall continue playing house. Probably my most favorite piece of furniture that I own is my curio/bookcase. It has become such a mishmosh of stuff and it definitely needs an overhaul. I am tired of the little stuff. I think I'm going to pack it up and "theme" each shelf. I'm going to move my Santa's to the top shelf, right below the light. Below is my "before" picture. Tomorrow I will share the "after".

Hope you're enjoying your weekend also!!

Friday, November 7, 2008

A Million Buckaroos

If I had a million dollars today, it would bring a little, bitty smile to my face. I would happily think about all the things I would like to buy because I could be a material girl living in a material world very easily . . .

But, after I was a little frivolous, because I'd just have to be for a little bit, I would do all the necessities like college educations, mortgages, car loans and credit card bills for me and mine. I would buy myself a little cottage in the hills of northwest North Carolina and then have a blast decorating it. I would reduce my hours at work and take time to write a book. I would stock up on Swarovski crystals and pearls and unique glass beads and spend time creating beautiful pieces of jewelry. I would make distinctive pillows and purses to sell on Worth Avenue and I would go to Barnes and Noble with a shopping cart and fill it with whatever my heart desired. I would get involved with the Make A Wish Foundation and I certainly would have to invest some so I could keep up with this new standard of living that I would be accustomed to.

I would take a little trip to Vermont to visit my brother as I have not seen his new home yet. I would go to Toronto, Niagra Falls and Williamsburg, Virginia. I'd also go to Key West for a month. Yep, I'd enjoy all of these things. Okay, I'm ready. Let's go!!!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Thankful Thursday

Short, sweet and to the point . . .

Today I am thankful the election is over. I am thankful to not have to feel compelled to watch the happenings on television. I am thankful that we can get on with life. I feel a sense of relief. There was such tension throughout the land. I want peace and harmony. We know what is now and hopefully we can all come together for the good of our great country. God Bless America - land that I love!!

Thank you to Rhondi for hosting Thankful Thursday. Be sure to visit other participants by clicking here.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A Mother's Love

This is a picture of my mother. Her name is Esther. My mother always loved her name because she was told she was named after Queen Esther in the Bible and she felt very honored to be named after a Queen. That's probably the reason why she has chosen to live her life as a Queen, well, at least in her opinion!! This picture was taken on my mother's 80th birthday.

I have always been very close to my mother - probably the closest to her of her three daughters. We always understood each other and could talk for hours and hours. When I was a young girl in high school, my friends could never understand how I could have such a close relationship with my mother. She was always my best friend. I always felt I could tell her anything and she would always give me tips and hints on make-up, fashion and homemaking, but never on cooking. My mother always hated to cook and never made a secret of that fact.

We would always have fun together. We could laugh and laugh and we enjoyed doing the same type of things, like talking, shopping and going out to eat!! She would always have to have "just a taste" of whatever I was eating even though I detest anyone eating off my plate.

I always knew my mother and I had a very special bond, though I never realized the depth of her love until I became a mother. From as far back as I can remember I always wanted to be a mother and I always wanted a little girl so I could hopefully have the same relationship with my daughter as I always had with my mother. Fortunately, I was so blessed.

At the conclusion of elementary school, we had a traditional graduation ceremony with a cap and gown, yearbook and class ring. When I graduated 8th grade, I asked my mother to sign my year book. My mother wrote, "This above all, to thine own self be true". Initially I did not understand the significance of those words. Now they mean so very much to me and those words guide me in my daily actions.

Mothers can play such an important role in our lives, especially in those formative years. I thank my beautiful mother for giving me such a wonderful start and for showing me how truly wonderful a mother's love can be.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Until You Walk In My Shoes . . .

I started to write a post tonight about jewelry, but it just didn't seem right. My mind kept wandering to our two candidates for President of the United States. I cannot imagine how they feel at this moment. The emotions they have dealt with leading up to this moment, the night before the turning point of their lives.

Did they wish to become President when they were little boys growing up? Do little boys even dream of being President any more?

Our two candidates have travelled so many miles these past few days, have smiled so many smiles and have slapped bravado on their sleeves. They believe in themselves and they want us to know it. Each wants our vote. Each believes that they can do the better job. Each has devoted so much to the winning of this election.

Who will win? We can guess, but we do not know for sure. Someones dreams will be realized tomorrow night and someones hopes will be dashed. They have put themselves out there for all to see - every piece of them. Could you do that? Could you open yourself up for the world to see, to adulate, to criticize? The emotional roller coaster that each has had to endure is unimaginable to me.

I give both of them credit. They have each waged a battle. They are just like you and me, you know. One will be over-the-top happy tomorrow and one will be very, very disappointed. Personally, I'm not sure which will be better - to win or to lose.

Yes, I know who I will vote for tomorrow. Am I right or am I wrong? Who knows? Either way, our next President of the United States of America will have my support because I would not want to walk in their shoes.

Sunday, November 2, 2008


I have agreed to participate in NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month). I have only just recently heard of this and thought it would be fun. For some of my favorite blogs that I always visit, this would be nothing for them, as they usually post every day anyway. This is a big deal for me and I've already messed up as it is for the month of November and I already missed yesterday. Ugh!!

I have joined a group of writers that are participating in NaBloPoMo. Topics have been put together, should one need some daily inspiration for thoughts from the heart and soul, though the slate is clear to fill as you choose. I also would like to thank Sandy, from Sandy's Notes, for sparking my interest.

Writing has always been a passion of mine, though I do not cultivate it as I should. We all have wonderful things to say and we express ourselves in a variety of ways. I am looking forward to writing from my heart this month. For those that take a moment to read my thoughts, I thank you.

The thought for today is changing something in my life if I had the guts to do it. I am a very positive, optimistic person. I could have incredible things going on in my life, but I do not let negative things influence my outlook on life. I don't know why I am the way I am. It's not like I make a conscious decision each day to think positively. It's just something I do without even thinking about it. Life is so much easier when you face it head-on. Your attitude is everything. You can have a good day or you can have a bad day. It is what you choose, regardless of what lies in your path.

So how do you motivate a person to think positively and do something that would be good for them? Is it just a matter of a personal opinion? Is what I think would be good for someone exactly that, just what I think? Can you encourage someone to be motivated to succeed at something or does it come entirely from within each individual? I think it does. And that is a hard thing for me to accept.