Sunday, May 30, 2010

My First Mosaic Monday

For the past few weeks I have admired the lovely mosaics all you talented photographers create!  Today I got a little brave and thought I  would post one too.  I have soooo much to learn but here goes!  I'm sharing with you today pictures of my garden!  

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Tea Cup Tuesday!

The cups I'm sharing with you today are really special to me.  The first tea cup belonged to my mother.  It reminds me a little of Lady Carlyle.  The name on the bottom is Salisbury and is made in England.  I love the cluster of flowers inside the cup.  The teddy bear belonged to her also!                                     

The second cup is a cute little demitasse cup that belonged to my grandmother.  I remember my grandmother drinking  Turkish coffee from these cups.  When she was done she would turn it upside down.  After a few minutes she would turn it right side up again and read the fortune it told.  That's how I remember it as a child.  I'm not sure where it was made since there is only a number on the bottom.  

Remembering My Parents Today!

 May 24, 1947
San Francisco, California

Friday, May 21, 2010

My Trip To The Big Apple!

Nearly three years ago I received an invitation to attend the taping of Barry Manilow's PBS Special.  It was going to be filmed at a Steiner Studios in Brooklyn, N.Y. where he grew up.  If you have your volume turned up when you visit my blog then you already know I LOVE Barry Manilow!  Since it was only two weeks before our anniversary (Sept. 11th) and the show was being taped on our anniversary I figured I would have a better chance of my husband not saying NO! :)  When he got home from work that day I said "Hey I found something for us to do on our anniversary".  He said "Where is Barry going to be"?  He thinks he's so smart!  I said NEW YORK!  We had never been to New York and we always talked about going.  I couldn't think of a better reason than being on a TV special (with Barry of course) and finally going to see New York.  He couldn't say no to that!  Lucky for us we were able to fly for free and the show was free so I figured we could splurge on the hotel!  The only name that popped into my head was the Waldorf Astoria.  I went to their web site and looked up their rooms.  They were a bit pricey (okay really pricey) but since the flight was free I figured what the heck!  So I booked us a suite at the Waldorf Astoria!  I was pretty excited about going to New York, seeing Barry and staying at such a famous hotel.  Things were going quite well so far.  We got FIRST CLASS on a premium service flight!  It had reclining seats and they fed you throughout the flight!  And it was FREE (hubby works for United)!  I bought tickets to see Mama Mia on Broadway for the first night so we really didn't see much of our suite till the next day. 
Waldorf Astoria Lobby

 I didn't want to say anything and neither did he but our room was AWFUL!  The furniture was dirty the drapes were rotted and the carpet was wet from something leaking in the bathroom!  This is the WALDORF ASTORIA!  We decided that morning to go to the desk and tell them about the condition of our room.  They couldn't apologize enough!  He said if we didn't mind packing our things he would upgrade us to another suite.  We  agreed and off we went to pack.  He told us we didn't have to be there that they would move our things for us. So we were off to see New York!  
View from the double decker tour bus
Oprah was doing her show from New York that day!
Our Second Suite!

When we arrived later that evening (or I should say morning)  without going into too much detail there was a plumbing issue in our bathroom!  Yikes this is the WALDORF ASTORIA!  When we got up in the morning we decided to go speak to the manager.  He too couldn't apologize enough. 
 He said if we didn't mind packing again ( OH GEEZ AGAIN) he would upgrade us to another suite but this time in the WALDORF TOWERS!  We said okay and off we went to pack once again.  I got smart this time and left all our clothes on hangers!  The bellman came and took us in the elevator that requires a special card or you can't go up! 

 I thought wow I feel kind of important!  He took us to the 37th floor (there are 42 floors), walked us down the hallway and opened the door to the biggest suite I have ever seen!  The foyer was gigantic! 
The Foyer!

The Dining Room!

The Parlor!

The View!

The Flowers!

The Bathroom!

The Bedroom!

I'm not quite sure how long it took before our mouths finally closed from the shock!  Off the foyer was a huge dining room.  Then we entered the parlor (not quite sure if that's what they called it).  It must have been 100 ft. long!  At one end was a baby grand piano (Barry wasn't there playing) :( and so many sitting areas I can't remember.  There were 3 bathrooms, maids quarters and a full kitchen.   There were so many closets my husband couldn't find where the bellman put his clothes! lol  I called everyone I could think of and said "You will never believe where we are"!  I think we spent that whole day laughing and in shock!  When we got back that night after the TV show taping there was champaign and chocolate strawberries waiting for us.  The next night we had a beautiful flower arrangement delivered to us along with dessert and imported water from Ireland!  Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think our trip would have been so memorable!  Thanks BARRY!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

My New Rug!

I've been looking on the internet for a new rug for my family room. I couldn't find anything here locally but this super expensive place that sells their rugs for thousands!!!!!  It's not an easy task relying on your monitor.  After searching for weeks I finally found something I thought would be perfect for my new furniture.  I needed something bigger and a totally different color from what I had. I'm not used to having red... this is really a new adventure for me. My other rug was so small I couldn't put the sofa on it so all it did was slide around.  It was driving me crazy! So here we go let me know what you think.  :)
Old Rug
New Rug

I'm not quite done with this room!  I have valances ordered in a companion fabric to the chair, a foot stool and a few more pillows.  You can never have too many pillows!  Then I'll be done!  :)

Police Officer Appreciation Week!

Please remember the sacrifice these brave men and women make everyday!  I am proud to be the mother of two of them!  Yesterday when I posted this I didn't explain where the pictures were taken.  I thought I would share that with you today.  The very bottom row of pictures were from the funeral of two wonderful deputies Kevin and Joe that passed away when their helicopter crashed in July 2005.  It was the first police funeral my husband and I had ever attended and unfortunately not the last.  It was 105 in Sacramento that day and thousands of people lined the streets to salute the officers (from all over the country) as they drove through the streets of Sacramento. After attending the service my husband and I joined the thousands of citizens that lined the streets in the hot July sun.  As we stood there waving and saluting I saw both my sons traveling in the same patrol car drive by and flash their lights and siren at us!  I was never so proud of anything in my entire life as I was that day!  This is certainly not the career I would have chosen for my only two children but that day I realized why they did!
Sacramento, California
The pictures taken around the Capital were from the funeral of Vu Nguyen shot by a gang member in December 2007.  Vu was in the academy with my youngest son Darrell.  I remember him so well during the graduation.  His name was called out numerous times during the ceremony for awards he had won throughout the academy.  He also won the very top award of their class the "Top Gun Award".  He was an outstanding deputy!  

Tea Cup Tuesday!

My first cup called Juliet by Royal Doulton is one I have always been really fond of.  My niece brought this cup back for me from one of her trips to England.  I love the soft blue color and it's simple style.  In the first picture it's sitting on a chair I painted a while back.  There's kind of a funny story about that chair.  Back when I was teaching tole painting I also painted samples for our shop.  This was one of the samples I did.  After I had the whole chair done (which took many many hours)  I wasn't happy with the results!  I'm the kind of person that things don't really grow on me.  If I don't like something from the start then I never will!  So, I plugged in my palm sander (took a deep breath) and sanded the whole thing down to bare wood and started all over!  I was much happier with the results which was a good thing because it would have been firewood after that!
My second tea cup to share with you today was a beautiful one I bought when I visited The Empress Hotel in Victoria, Canada.  My husband and I stopped there for a few days on our way to an Alaskan Cruise.  They have the best china ever and I wanted everything!  The cup is by Crown Dorset from Staffordshire, England.  I love the tea pot too.  It's from my trip to the Empress Hotel too!  My hubby and I had tea there that day.  It was the only time on the whole trip I didn't have my camera so I have no proof that he actually had tea with me.  But believe me he did and his fingers didn't fit in the tiny handles of the tea cup.  :)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Bedroom Door Project!

I recently posted pictures of our bathroom remodel we did last year.  I thought I would share with you a little more of what we did to the rest of the house.  We have kind of an odd shaped bedroom.  Some people have referred to it as a bowling alley!  It's 13 x 25 so I guess it does resemble one.  At the far end where the sitting area is we had an 8ft. window.  Nothing all that outstanding just a window with white shutters.  I had a great idea (my husband gets scared when I say that) to take the window out and put in a pretty door.  I did a little research and found Anderson makes a beautiful Frenchwood Glider.  I wanted the look of french doors but didn't want them to open into the room.  My contractor who was doing the rest of my remodel told me he could install it for us.  We decided to put in a 10 ft. door so it required a bit more construction since our opening was 8 ft.  He had to put in a new header to accommodate the bigger door.  Everything was done from the outside so there wasn't any sheetrock damage to our room (but lots and lots of dust)!  You can see in the pictures he did an amazing job!  I'm thrilled with the door and so very glad we did it!  As you can see from the pictures my granddaughters got a big kick out of Gramma having a big hole in her wall!

The inside before

The outside before

Just the beginning of the mess!
Lily, Maddie & Steve my contractor

As you can see the hole got a lot bigger!

All done!

From the outside!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

A Little Too Much Rain!

Normally since it's Tea Cup Tuesday I wouldn't post anything else but I just had to share this.  Yesterday was an unusually wet day here in "Sunny California" (we aren't living up to our name this year for sure).   I look forward to the first bloom of my roses in the spring every year.  It's always the prettiest before our summer heat has a chance to fry them all. :(  After taking my dog to the groomer this morning I thought I would go see how water logged everything was.  YIKES!  I should have taken a before picture of my beautiful Sexy Rexy rose tree.  Every stem just loaded with roses was hanging from all the weight of the water. Can't believe none of them were broken.  As much as I hated to I decided to cut them ALL (yes all) off.  This is what I ended up with.  The flowers are so wet I can't bring them inside and put them on the furniture yet so I had to take the picture outside.  As you can see from the picture I didn't need any filler flowers!