Tuesday, November 30, 2010

I Stalked Her Mantel!

Yes, I admit it. I stalked someone's mantel. I couldn't help myself, it was just so gorgeous. The layers and layers of beauty and detail just sucked me in and I went back to it over and over again.
During one of our email exchanges I confessed to her about my stalking problem and how I was very glad that she didn't have one of those boxes that show your face when you come over to visit her blog because she would probably question my sanity when she saw how many times I was there...lurking...enlarging that picture of her mantle over and over again.
I finally broke free and decided to attempt to use her inspiration and channel my energy into creating my own Christmas mantel.

This is Mantle Number One...

In case you are wondering where the stockings are, they are over on Mantel Number 2 in our Living Room...'cause that is where the big chimney is...and you know why the stockings need to be near the chimney, don't you?

Here is a closer look...

I had so much fun creating this mantel and blended the old with the new. I had the garland and the ribbon already but purchased the beads and the ornaments from Lowes.

I also already had the candles and candleholders as well as the berry topiaries.
Now, don't be hatin' on my brass accents because when it comes to Christmas, I love the contrast of the brass against my dark wood. It gives it some sparkle and I'm proud of it! I also happen to love that I get to use traditional Christmas colors in my home and I take full advantage of it!

These vases are normally in our office but by moving them in here and adding some greenery and more berries, they add some height to the space.

This is some of the most real looking faux greenery I have ever come across. I have actually had people come up to touch it just to see for themselves!

I felt that the bows on each end needed a little more "umph" and so I snipped these off of a dinky little faux poinsettia plant I found burried at the bottom of one of my Christmas bins. They really help add a pop of color. 

I fell in love with these butterflies and they just clip right on to the garland. I ended up carrying that theme over onto my other mantel but you can't see it...yet!

The size and color of these beads were perfect and draped behind the garland they add one more layer of depth and dimension.

Here is how it all looks glowing at night!

I will have more of this space to show you soon but I didn't want to miss out on all of the fun Mantel Parties going on out there!

Oh, and whose mantel was I stalking?
Well, it was Becca over at Adventures in Decorating!

Becca is not only an incredibly talented decorator/designer, she is one of the loveliest ladies I have ever "met". I would have told you who it was sooner, but I was afraid you would hop over there and get sucked in by all of the gorgeousness you will find. It happens very easily, trust me!

From this Southern Girl at Heart,

Linking to..
The Lettered Cottage Mantel Party
Boring to Better
Boardwalk Bragfest
Feathered Nest Friday

Monday, November 29, 2010

"Parsley, Sage, (a whole lot of) Rosemary and Thyme"

It never fails that when I think about herbs, this song by Simon and Garfunkel pops into my head. I don't know why! My parents didn't listen to it and I only know the first line of the song, but that is just how my weird mind works! And, of course I have to sing it at the top of my lungs when it comes to mind just to annoy entertain my family. I know they love it!
I love the smell of the beautiful potted Rosemary plants that pop up in the stores this time of year, don't you?
Gorgeous topiaries in all shapes and sizes that call out for me to come buy them.

But, I simply cannot justify it when I have something in my yard that looks like this...
Nope, you are not seeing things...that is our Rosemary bush....err...tree...err...monstrosity?
I think it has almost reached the point of needing it's own zip code!
You can see why there is no way I can ever spend money on a Rosemary topiary when this sits in my yard!
So, I decided I would try and take advantage of it and get creative.
The first thing I did was find these vases at TJ Maxx for a grand total of $14 for all three!

I also picked up some of those little foamy, beady things at the craft store. I'm pretty sure that "little foamy beady things" is the technical term for them!
I went out and snipped some of my Rosemary and barely made a dent in the bush, but it was just what I needed to create this centerpiece for our kitchen table.

Here's another look!

The whole house smelled amazing. So much so that my hubby walked in and said "Holy Rosemary!"
I added some Wal-Mart ornaments hanging by ribbons tied to my chandelier, but still felt like something was missing.

Then I found the perfect table runner!

In case you can't tell, it has "The Twelve Days of Christmas" printed on it in colors that could not be more perfect for my house!
Here is a closer look at the details.

And one more look for good measure.

I think it looks so fun and festive!

And, until I get my large Evergreen Wreath this week, I wanted to find one more way to use my Rosemary.

I simply snipped the longest branches, tied them with a wide, red velvet ribbon and hung them from my wreath hook on the front door.

It was the perfect way to welcome my parents this past week!

I can't wait to show you more of my Rosemary creations and take you on a tour of my home all "Decked" out for Christmas!

Blessings to you from this
Southern Girl at Heart,

Linking to these Parties

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Update and...

A Very Happy Thanksgiving to you all!


My parents made it safe and sound to our home this afternoon and we are profoundly grateful for that and
for all of your prayers and lovely comments!
Thank you!

I can't express how wonderful it is to be apart of this blogging community and how much I appreciate all of you!

May you have a truly blessed Thanksgiving!

*The Inspiration Friday Party will be on vacation this week, but be sure to come back next week for more fabulous Inspiration!*

From this Southern Girl at Heart,

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thankful and Please Pray!

"Blizzard Hits the Northwest"
Have you read the headlines today?
While we got this lovely dusting of snow overnight...

...which is a fairly rare occurrence in our parts this early in the season...

My parents left their home in Utah, hoping they were going to beat the blizzard and make it to our house tonight.
Instead they encountered something like this...
(from Comcast)

I woke up this morning and felt compelled to pray for them. I had not seen any news yet, but the burden on my heart caused me to pray continually all morning, especially when I finally turned on my computer and saw that image.
I heard from my mom a few hours later and breathed a sigh of relief! They have lived in states where it snows for most of their married life, and she said that was the worst storm they had ever been in. They are pretty sure they were at the epicenter of it and there was so much ice that it actually broke one of the windshield wipers right off!
As I type this my eyes are welling with tears just thinking about how very grateful I am that the Lord answered my prayers and covered them with protection.
They still have a long way to go today and the storm is still raging on. They will probably end up spending the night in Northeast Oregon before making the rest of their way here in the morning.
Please pray for them if you think of it!

We want Nonna and Poppa here safe and sound so they can join us in this kind of fun!

Praying you have a very safe and very blessed Thanksgiving!

From this Southern Girl at Heart,

Monday, November 22, 2010

Company's Coming!

Bring on the Air Mattresses!
Oh wait, this time one less person has to wake up in the middle of the night to find themselves slowly sinking into the center of their bed only to try and re-inflate it without waking up the entire house.
Because this year, we made our office just a little bit more multi-functional.
Come on in!

Let me show you some of the details of this space where I pour my heart and soul into this little ol' blog!

If the desk wasn't covered in papers and coloring books you would be seeing a lot more of it!

I can never quite put my finger on why I love bird prints so much, but I just know that I do!

These plates came in a box set from Ross for $4.99.
I love me some cheap wall decor!

Even the office needs a little bit of Christmas love! The lemon topiary sits next to one of my favorite pics of my sweet boy doing the "itsy-bitsy spider". Look at those chubby little hands!

Oh, and what's this? Ummm...something seems slightly off in this space...can't quite put my finger on it...

Oh yeah! It is this big empty space.
Well, folks, it is empty no more! I saved and scrimped and scrimped and saved and finally got what I have been wanting...
A Sleeper Chair!

I found it online at JC Penney and when it folds out it will be a twin bed. I was so excited the day it was delivered and it came in the nick of time! We always offer our rooms/beds to our guests, but my parents, in particular, get up at an unGodly hour bright and early so they like to be close to the coffee maker! 
This will make things just a bit easier for one of them.
 But, there seemed to be something missing above my new lovely chair. The mirror was fine...it had been left in another room by the previous owner and we relocated it to this little corner. But now it looked kind of lonely.
Then I remembered something(s) I had stuck in a closet somewhere.

Wowee! Is that brass blinding you? Well, I got out my ORB spray paint and sprayed their little heart's out! Then they made their way to their new home.

Once again, here is the space Before.

And, here it is now!

Ahhh....so much better!
Here is a close-up of the fabric on the pillows.

I think it ties in beautifully with the chair we are currently using at the desk...I'm even sitting in it while I type this!

This chair is another Ross find. I've had it for almost 10 years and I vividly remember sticking it in my tiny cart and wheeling it right up to the counter!

So, who is coming, you ask? Well, they aren't really company!
They are my parents, a.k.a. "Nonna and Poppa" and they will be spending Thanksgiving with us. We will also be celebrating Christmas with them this weekend, since they will be spending that Holiday with my sister and her family.

This is us with my folks last year at Thanksgiving. It was the last time my entire family was all together at the same place at the same time!

We can't wait to see them! And with Poppa being newly retired, they get to stay and really make the most out of their time with us.
Oh, and who get's the new twin bed?
Well, I think they might just have to wrestle for it!

Blessings to you from this
Southern Girl at Heart,

Linking to these parties...

Friday, November 19, 2010

Inspiration Friday Party No. 13!

I see them every year. Buried at the bottom of one of my bins of Christmas Decorations. I take them out and lovingly look them over while memories come flooding back.
And then, I put them back in the bin where they will remain until the next year.
What are they?

Our childhood stockings! I don't know how my hubby ended up with two of them...did Santa just like him the most?

Doesn't the denim one just scream, "I used to be bell bottoms!"?
I've never really known what to do with these.
They don't quite...Ahem..."Go" with my Christmas decor, you know what I mean? But, they always seemed so forlorn just sitting in that plastic tub while all of the other decorations were unpacked and given places of prominence around the house.
So, I finally decided to do something about it!
Can you guess what it's going to be?

I'll give you a hint...they were stiched together...

And became a darling Tree Skirt for my son's Christmas Tree!

*Please note that my son decorated this tree entirely by himself*

I just love how these look now in his room! The color pallette is perfect for his space and they add that touch of nostalgia that I believe is so important this time of year. 
I ended up needing to bunch them up a bit with the skirt to get just the right effect and I think next year I will maybe try a new fabric for the skirt but for now, they are charming and my son will be so surprised when he comes home from school today to discover it!

I'm linking this up to Fabric Fun Thursday!

Let's move on now to some fabulous High-Lights from last week's Inspiration Friday Party!
But, before we do, let me just tell you that it is almost physically painful to me to have to pick out only a couple of folks each week to showcase. It is that People Pleaser sickness in me I guess! I really just want to showcase everyone's wonderful creativity but I know that isn't the way it's "Done" so I'm sticking to my method of picking Bloggers who are fairly new to this community and giving them a chance to strut their stuff!

And on that note, let me introduce you to Kelly from Crazy We Go.
These are some of the darling ornaments she is creating to decorate her Newlywed Nest this year!

Aren't those absolutely lovely? Kelly has also done some amazing projects recently to make her first home a truly warm and inviting space. Hop on over to Crazy We Go to see more from Kelly!

Next up is Judy from DIY by Design. Let me tell you that it has been an absolute treat to get to know Judy and see how her fabulous eye for design is creating a truly gorgeous home for her to share with her family. She isn't afraid of color and has just recently redecorated her daughter's darling room. But one of the things I really appreciate about Judy is how she repurposes things!
Take these shirts for example...

She took her daughter's Gymboree shirts, which she had outgrown, and turned them into this...

Is that not one of the most darling Tooth Fairy Pillows you have ever seen!!?? I will never look at my daughter's shirts the same way again! Thank you for sharing this creation with us Judy and for your lovely blog, DIY by Design!

Please take a minute and say "hi" to these lovely ladies!

Now, what have you all been up to this week? I know there has been a flurry of activity going on in all of our homes as we prepare for the upcoming Holidays and I can't wait to see what wonderful creations you have come up with! Recipes, ornaments, decorating, crafts, musings on life and family...all are welcome here at Inspiration Friday!
*Next week the Inspiration Friday party will be on vacation to honor the Thanksgiving Holiday Weekend!*

P.S. I know it says this in the linky instructions below, but PLEASE be sure to make some reference to the Inspiration Friday Party in your post or just grab my button over in the sidebar. Thanks!

Here is how to link up...
1. Add your Permalink to your entry but not your General Blog Address. To get your Permalink, click on the title of the blog post you are wanting to submit and copy and paste the address into the URL box. You will also have to add your address but it will not be visible to anyone else.
2. Do not try and Link up until you have actually published that particular post on your blog.
3. Please link back to the host blog, Southern In My Heart, so that those who visit your blog will be able to find some wonderful Inspiration from everyone else!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A Remnant

I pass this way every day.
And yet, I've never really noticed it before.
I'm always trying to get somewhere, having to hand someone a snack, trying to make all of the appropriate animal sounds while listening to "Old McDonald".
But that day, I turned my head to the left and saw it.
A Remnant...the last bit of Autumn color.

The grapes are long gone.

And soon the leaves that are still clinging to the vines, will join the rest of their friends on the lush green carpet.

But on this day, I got to see it in all of it's glory.

And, all of this time, it was there.
I'm so glad I turned my head to the left before I missed it!

"Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No one branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine, you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from m you can do nothing."
John 15:4-5

Blessings to you this Wednesday from
A Southern Girl at Heart,