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Living Graciously, Artfully, Frugally.

Consciously taking notice of the gifts each day places in our path.

“I awoke this morning with devout thanksgiving for my friends, the old and the new.” R. W. Emerson

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Out With the Old, Happy New Year

Hey there dear friends, it's been a while.
Here we are at the end of 2013 and I am tempted to say good riddance.


That said, I have a hard time with endings, even happy ones.


No big year in review here. Don't really want to relive a lot of it.
How about some Christmas decorating instead, albeit late?


 It is tempting to look at a year filled with unpleasant events and write it off as a bad year.
Being a glass half full girl I have chosen to look at 2013 as a year of healing.
Body and soul healing.
Much better than bad.
Lets face it, lots of beautiful moments happen among even the worst times in life. 


You have provided many of those beautiful moments.
You share so much that is lovely and kind and thoughtful.


Bring on 2014!


I have great hope for a fresh new year.


 Happy New Year friends.


Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being a constant bright spot on even the darkest days.


You lift me up just knowing that we are traveling a path together, near and far, 
all at the same time on this earth.


I wish we could all gather at the table and laugh, and tell stories, and be together.


Oh wait, we already do!
Heres to sharing our New Year.
May it be the best yet.
Hugs, Pam
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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Art Therapy


I had my six month visit today with my surgeon.
Mammogram...
Sigh of relief...
All looks good...
Come back in a year!
Had my pre hysterectomy physical yesterday and all good too.
This year has been, and continues to be a stinker but good news is good news. 
I have been feeling a bit sorry for myself.
Like I missed the entire summer because of radiation, and now I will miss Thanksgiving and the beginning of the Christmas season because I have this hysterectomy the Tuesday before.
My PCP says they may keep me 3 days.
Then 3 weeks recovery.
Rats!


Had the day off from work.
Came home and planted myself in the studio.
Watched some awesome Junelle Jacobson videos while I worked.
You cannot help but feel cheery while listening to her.


Kicked myself in the ample...er I mean curvy... rear.
What do I have to be sad about?
I have a loving family and actually pretty good health despite this year.
I have a business that I love and have recently met some local artists 
who may give me just the boost I need.


Plus, I have this outlet of making whatever strikes my mood when I am feeling low.
Happy colors, Christmas coming, joy is what I will concentrate on.


Then I got to thinking...
I don't have to cook Thanksgiving dinner for 15 for the first time in 28 years!
I have many semi willing workers to do my bidding for a few weeks too.
They will be my team of decorators. 
No climbing in the attic and digging through bins in the garage.
No grumbling that there is only one person in the house doing ALL the holiday prep.
I will direct the event this year!


Oh this may be the best season ever.
I can just hear it...
"Move that light an inch to the right please."
"I know we have at least 3 more glittery stars, can you look again?"
"The wise men are on the wrong side."


Maybe I better keep a lid on my enthusiasm.
At least for a few weeks.


I was also inspired to do a ten minute sketch of how the day made me feel.
 Dark and light combined.
A gift with a cost.
Life.

Yours on the bright side, P.
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Friday, October 25, 2013

What I Have Learned from Breast Cancer

A life lesson from breast cancer.
Nothing usually goes as planned but we certainly spend a lot of time planning anyway.
I have learned a bit about unexpected events in the last several years but especially this past year.
Things happen, we have no real control, 
so we need to sway and bend instead of standing rigid or we will break.
Simple enough in theory but I think I have finally learned to practice bending and swaying.
In fact it is quite an enjoyable way to spend a life.


Let go of all of those perfect plans.
Make room for the unexpected.
That way, when it comes you won't crack.
You will dance with it.
Of course we still need to make plans, it is part of creativity.
Just loosen them up a bit.
All those carefully laid plans can be such a hinderance and lead to disappointment.
Make sketches instead of creating blueprints.
Bring an eraser for last minute changes.
Pencils instead of ink.
I have found so much more peace living this way in the past year.
I still plan, but I am ready for what life brings and I will spin and leap and sway with it.
How about you?

Yours in the unexpected, P.

P.S. Unexpected find at ReStore, two gorgeous yellow velvet chairs for my sitting room. $18.00 each! What?
You heard me!


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Wednesday, October 9, 2013

October and Letting Go

Normally this time of year is spent fluffing up the farmhouse for the spooky season.


This year, working at the Costume Gallery, it looks as though 
decorating needs to be placed on the "Maybe I will get a minute" list.


Priorities...
Do you have advice on how best to list them?
Making things for the upcoming Over the Moon show and for a fabulous little shop called 
Dandy Haberdashery need to be up there on the list.
Not to mention my poorly neglected Ohio Valley Mall space.
So what have I been up too?
Work. Halloween in a Costume Shop is a whole life event.


Photo shoots, planning meetings, window dressing and of course our customers who keep us going.


If I am absent from here for a bit, it is only because I am up to my ears in priorities.


Visits to your lovely homes and fall decor will have to suffice.
Each evening, tucked in bed with a chai tea latte and the ipad I will get a little taste of Halloween decorating and crafts.


There certainly won't be much of that happening here.


By the way, do you have your costume yet???

Yours in Halloween frenzy, P.
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Saturday, September 28, 2013

Flipped Out


Flip, say it a few times quickly...
funny word. 
One of those words that denote comedy, like a circus, or Flip Wilson...yes I am THAT old.
Or maybe 
a bit of insanity, as in flipping one's lid.
Could be just plain rude as in an angry hand gesture or the act of being flippant.
Not sure where this post fits in all the realms of flipness.


In an attempt to get some home maintenance done, while balancing the new job, the business, making art, stocking the antique booth and being included in a fabulous new local arts collective I decided to start on the front porch.
It was looking quite shabby.
These generic coach lamps have never been my favorite
 but replacements are not currently in the budget.


They tend to fill up with all manner of leaves and spider nests and unidentifiable detritus.
I am glad I can't identify most of it...skin crawling.
Barely any light was passing through the glass at this point.
Donning gloves, I went to work cleaning them up.
I found it quite difficult to get my hand down into the opening after removing the top.
So, being flipping brilliant, I disconnected them and turned them over to clean them.


Sparkling clean and ...wait....
maybe they don't look so bad upside down?
Always ready for a change around here.
I left them this way.


Weird or freaking awesome?
Not quite sure yet, but I think I like them better this way.
Until I find a flipping fantastic deal on the perfect fixtures they are staying.


Tell me your honest opinion.
Is this a desperate and failed attempt at changing the look of my boring porch lights?
Or is it so flipping awesome that it just might work for a while?


I am off to see what else I can flip.
Enjoy your day my friends.

Yours in a topsy turvy world, P.

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Thursday, September 19, 2013

I Am Woman, Roaring

With apologies to Katy Perry and Helen Reddy.
If you have visited here occasionally, you know that Frippery Farmhouse has experienced a down turn in recent years. I posted about that way back here, and here.
We have bucked up, born the load, yada yada.


Four years, even laughing about it, like here.
How long do we have to make lemonade ???
I am becoming sour.


This year has been the one that pushed me over the edge...
breast cancer, the last of our retirement savings, crushing medical bills...never cried once this year.
Nothing can break through this shell.
But fate said, not enough, and on the day before our 28th anniversary I lost the setting out of my engagement ring, diamonds and all.
Not at home, somewhere else, no clue...
Big ugly crying face...over and over.
I know, its a thing right?
But it was the last thing I felt I had from our old, less scary life.


OK...enough...no more.
I told whatever cosmic wheel that has been trying to crush us to back off.
"Don't make me turn around and take my earrings off."
Karma should be trembling right about now.


No matter what we lose in life, there is always something left.
I have the ring of my husbands love around me.
The man who has honored and cherished me and treated me like a queen these many years.
Diamonds?
We don't need no stinking diamonds.


I will, however, continue to roar.
So watch out if you sneak up behind me and tap me on the shoulder.
In between rages, I will count my blessings, 
but not too loudly, 
Wouldn't want to tempt fate.


Remember, even if things seem to be at their lowest, find something to rejoice in.
Just don't draw too much attention to yourself because the cosmos is fickle.

One more apology.
This one to Gloria Gaynor...
I will survive.

Back to happiness, fun and frivolity here...promise.

Thanks, my friends, for listening, P.
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Friday, August 30, 2013

Chilling on a Hot Summer Day

Wow, summer is almost over and NOW we get the summer weather...
It is simply too hot to work on the garden.
Do you ever feel guilty for just taking time to sit back and chill a bit?
On your day off do you constantly have all those must do's tugging at you?


Sometimes we need to give ourselves permission to take a little PTO and just indulge.
A stack of magazines, the iPad and a tall glass of cucumber water...
Ahhh.


It is just stifling outside and I have the inside mostly under control...(snort)...so why not?

How about you?
Same issues with taking time for yourself?
I never had this problem when I was younger.

As in before marriage and children.
After 28 years it is time to get back to it.


Lets kick back and enjoy a little me time.
Oh, and before you ask, I am willing to share my recipe for cucumber water.
Cucumber slices and water...
We are taking it easy after all.

Yours in taking a moment, P.
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Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Always Back to Black and White

So I have been a bad blogger.
Life and stuff, ya know?
Oh and of course, the house.
Can't forget that.
Summer is winding down and I find myself back to my old standby, black and white.
I tried color, even had a word...coloriness.
But old loves sometimes linger.


Last time we chatted I was gearing up for City Flea.
Since then I have started a new job...
an awesome new job...here...
it will be a perfect fit.
It will even require a blog, and Facebook and Pinterest and tweets.
More on that soon.


Hence the simplification of the house. 
I need to be able to keep it under control.
I even moved the dining room yet again.
Back to a reading room, good for cozy autumn days and not for piling everything that comes in the door onto the dining room table.

Anyone else have that issue?
I for one am outlawing piles of junk in this house.
Because no one in the family pays much attention to my rules I suppose I will be the only one following them.

Speaking of junk...thrifted clock $6 and framed vintage B&W photo of NYC $2...score.


Having said that, my simplification calls for less...
less objects to dust, less clutter, just plain old less.
One comes in two must go out, at least in theory, haha.

Oh but I could not resist a little orange.
This IKEA rug was love at first sight 
when I saw KariAnne at Thistlewood Farms using it in her gatehouse.
Orange just keeps calling me.
Gold too.
Maybe it is the coming change of season.
Or just that orange and gold are plain pretty.


Enough playtime.
Apparently I need to do a bit of vacuuming.
Two of the dogs are at the groomers getting shaved.
Can they shave cats too?
Boy that would really cut down on the work around here.
I doubt the cats would be amused.
I can just picture the scathing looks...total disdain...


Do you ever feel like everything is complete?
Do we ever finish?
Life is definitely a work in progress.
Goals change, needs change, tastes change.
One thing that remains constant is my joy at visiting all of you.
A little stretch of time to fill my eyes with images and my heart with words.


I really will try to be a better blogger.
Also, I haven't eliminated all of the coloriness.
I just can't get a good photo of my front room.
Any tips on interior photography would be gratefully received.

Wow, I am all over the place today.
Anyhoo, glad to be checking in.


Yours in just plain living, P.


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Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Blisters on my Fingers and a Smile on my Face


City Flea is coming up this Saturday.
I think I finally have my rhythm down for these shows.


I used to be in a panic before a big antique or craft show.
No more. 
I think it is partially learning how to handle things more efficiently.
Really though, I believe my blog friends Debby and Denise have imparted some truth in their comments to my post about bounty.
Having cancer can change you in a good way.
At least the type I had.
Treatable and operable and able to be put in the rearview mirror.


I am crafting away happily and what gets finished will.
Finger burns are nothing compared to radiation burns.
No stress.


I think this is the most focused and productive I have been in a long while.
Live for the moment as that is what we have been given.
I even have the van filled with some mid century goodies to fill out my space at City Flea.
I am slowly switching my shows from all vintage to artsy/craftsy with a 
few choice vintage pieces mixed in.
Enjoying the process as much as the finished product.


If you are in the Cincinnati area this weekend stop and say hello.
I will be the girl in the red glasses with the burned fingers and a big smile.


The soldering iron is calling.
Talk later.

Yours in the happy places, P.
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