Saturday, February 26, 2011

The Window Project

Window display in Nellie's Nook-the downstairs apartment.
I love anything "RE"...REcreate, REfurbish, REmodel, REuse, REgenerate. Re means "again and again." What a wonderful concept--things we love can REnewed again! That is exactly what I did with the original windows from Nellie's Cottage. I could not bear to scrap them and so they sat in the back yard for 18 months (while I was deciding what to do with them)  becoming weathered to perfection:)
Leave the windows outside in the Texas heat, humidity, & thunderstorms
for at least 18 months.

This is the Window Project.....
Buy a house built in 1938 OR look at a flea market or garage sale for vintage windows


Carefully remove glass---old glass is very fragile
Sand  to smooth---NOT to remove all the old paint
dry brush white paint sparingly on the frame

cut regular mat board to fit the frame
Choose vintage papers, cut into 6x6 squares

Lay the paper squares on the mat board beginning in the center.
Lay the frame on top to check alignment.
Adhere the squares to the mat board with adhesive.
I also used matte Mod Podge on top of the whole project.
Hot glue the mat board to the back of the window.

I bought light fixture chain and hubby secured it with a screw.
Print 8x10s of your favorite old photos-I decided not to use the black mat, only white.
I love my mega roll of 3M-use generously on the photos
I laid the frames on the floor to choose placement of the photos.
I chose pink, cream & copper paint for the chipboard flourish
 Randomly dab the paint using one brush.  Slightly blend.
Hot glue flourish and Prima flowers to center of window frame.

Always save the negative image for a future project!





Now RE -"again & again" works for relationships
...the most important things we love!
REconnect with an old friend.
REsolve a disagreement.
REkindle the romance in your marriage.
REcommit to a goal.
REsolve to never be like the woman looked out the window into her neighbors yard and said to her husband "Look at that, she doesn't know how to clean her laundry." She did this every time she saw laundry on the line. One day she looked out the window and was amazed to see clean laundry. She mentioned this to her husband who said
"Well, actually I cleaned the window this morning!"

And that is the end of the Window Project.....

Friday, February 18, 2011

What have You done with My Name?

   I was cruising down the freeway last week when I came up behind someone going slow in the fast lane.  There is a great Gary Larson cartoon that puts these people in hell next to murderers & thieves. This may seem a bit harsh to those of you who like to drive slow... but it is "spot on" for those of us who were born with really heavy feet! Really, it is not my fault. I inherited the family curse, my brothers hold records for driving time to Utah and other far away places. 
We pride ourselves on being fast but good drivers...well most of us:)

   Anyway back to the story...I was just about to blow past the car and cut them off, letting them know they shouldn't have been there in the first place...
WHEN I REMEMBERED....
I remembered that I am now sporting Nellie's Cottage signs on my car. 
 I slowed down, found another way around, and smiled nicely as I passed in a very civilized manner:) I started thinking about the implications of advertising on my car. I am using my grandmother's name. She never even drove a car and I am quite certain that she would have driven sweetly! 
Nellie about 1941
1950's
1970's
late 1980's

   A story came to my mind that had made an impression on me as a young girl. A young man had a dream in which his deceased grandfather  (for whom he was named) appeared to him and said "I would like to know what you have done with my name?"  The young man responded "I have never done anything with your name of which you need be ashamed."
I wonder how differently the world would be if we were those kind of parents, grandparents, and children. The kind of people that would never do something to shame ourselves or others.

   And so I began to drive more sweetly, 
(my brothers will be rolling their eyes about now)
 gently passing, smiling as I passed, and watching my speed in case some nice  scrapbooker or quilter should see my sign and pass judgement on the cottage. 
   Sadly, this sweet style of driving only works when I have the signs on the car. A couple of days ago I came upon another car going slow in the fast lane. I remembered that I DID NOT have my signs on the car and happily blew past him making sure he felt my fury. It is like I have a good or bad driving angel on my shoulder depending on whether the signs are on my car!

On a more serious note-WHAT AM I doing with Nellie's name? 
I just got the best comment on facebook today- 

"I absolutely love Nellie's Cottage and everything it means!" 
Thank you Ashley:) 

I hope that the "and everything it means"
is love of family, home, all things good, honor, integrity, kindness and generosity.
 I hope that Nellie loves what I have done with her home.
I hope that all who enter will leave as friends and feel a spirit of  warm hospitality that Nellie exemplified.

 I also hope that someday I will want to drive sweetly all the time with or without the Nellie's Cottage signs on my car:)

So....what have you done with your name?

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Just us...a Valentine date

I was working at the cottage on Friday when an invitation was hand delivered to me.
 A mother/daughter-in-law date! Another sweet surprise from Janene! She took me to lunch, rented a chickflick and we scrapbooked at the cottage for a couple of hours...JUST US


Hallmark has a commercial out that gives us the idea that
Valentines day isn't just about you or me but about celebrating "US."

Just us... is you and one of your children at a time for dates. 
They can be VERY enjoyable when not in a mob:)
Daddy-daughter dinner date 2001

Just us...is renewing old friendships! Nellie's Cottage is the perfect place:)
The" old slumber party crowd" had a weekend at Nellie's Cottage.
We went to  the football game, dinner, laughed for hours and
 even wrapped an old friend's house...we warned her fair & square!


Just us... is time with your mother-in-law:)
Just us...is encouraging your children to really bond with each other!
My girls:)

Just us...  is really getting to know your aunt as as person and not just as Aunt Helen!
Aunt Helen came to visit me one day for a couple of hours.
 I got lost in her memories of how she met my uncle and the song she sang from elementary school:)
I  got a real look into her soul. She is very wonderful!
Just us...means married people still NEED to date.
My dad preached this religiously!
Dinner at Esther's fabulous cajun seafood ---down by the river
Just us...is loving a child or grandchild
or ANY child that needs love...there are many.
I am willing to move heaven & earth to go visit this precious baby!
Just us... means time to bond, time to focus on the one, time to really enjoy one another.

Just us... is reflected in a quote I found this week
"If there is anything better than to be loved, it is to love"

Just us...is worrying less about how we are treated and more about how we love others. I had an experience with this many years ago when I was struggling with a relationship. I prayed over and over again that they would work on loving ME. Many months went by and my prayer was not answered. Finally one night as I was about to recite my request for the hundreth time the thought came forcefully to my mind...YOU need to love them. I was less than thrilled with my answer.
 I wasn't the problem...or was I?

The answer to love is really very simple...less about me and more about us!

Valentines isn't just about a husband or boyfriend getting the
 flowers and chocolate right!
Valentine's Day thankfully, has evolved to something much more.
 Make a "Just Us" date with someone who needs your love 
and this will be 
the happiest Valentines Day/week/month of all:)