Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Hallowe'en!!!

Aren't these the cutest ribbons you ever saw?!! I used them to make a few Halloween cards this week. Ribbon is another of my "fetishes"!
And this cute fellow is just old orange crepe paper streamer drawn up with needle and thread into a circle and the cute sticker looks like a Halloween flower!

And these bad boys are the REAL Hallowe'en photo for you today! The pair of buzzards were sitting on the dead pine this week sunning their wings after lunch. (Getting ready for Hallowe'en supper tonight!) Heh, heh......
I hope you all have a safe, fun and happy All Hallows Eve tonight! I'll be locked inside my dark little house watching old black and white horror movies and eating chocolate!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Autumn stuff...............

One day I brought home from my walk some leaves that are steadily falling everywhere around here and tried to trace them onto felt. Hmmmm..........
some did nicely; some didn't. These sheets of felt from are wonderful.......large and lots of colors with dots of other colors mixed in and some with free-motion stitching already done! Above there's a maple leaf, an oak leaf, and a pumpkin I free-handed and forgot to leave a stem on it! Grrrrr! Click on the photo to enlarge it and notice the stitching and the blue blot of felt in the brown leaf! Off to play with them some more......

Is this sugar maple leaf "painted" neatly by Mother Nature, or what??!!!!!
Coloring right in the lines! And off the same tree below............ on these also to see the really neat color patterns. I've never noticed the autumn leaves with patches of color like this, but they're all just gorgeous. AND all different! Like snowflakes! Is God great, or what?!!

This moccasin (dead!) was at the edge of our driveway near the highway on one morning's walk last week............a vehicle must have run over it since we couldn't find any terrible-looking wounds on it like it would have had if an animal (or gun) had killed it. I suppose the snakes are on the move quickly now trying to find "hidey-holes" to spend the winter in hibernation. Our area has had warmish night temps so far, but this week we're getting the first hard frost; and our NC mountains are getting some snow/sleet today! Some local friends spent the weekend riding their motorcycles to the Blue Ridge Parkway to see the leaves, and said the scenery was just beautiful and the colors at their peak. Lucky dogs.
On another note altogether: I want to thank a couple of my blogging friends who have recently tagged me to play a game telling stuff about me you don't know; and then tagging 7 others to do the same. I must apologize to them for not playing this time around; I did that one several times last spring and summer and don't have time now to play, but I appreciate you visiting my blog and thinking of including me! Try again next spring, when my mood is better and DH has his new knee replacement and I'm all done with making Christmas presents and dealing with "company" and cooking and all that stuff I hate! (Can you tell I'm one of those "Scrooge" persons?!) HUMBUG!!!!! Heh, heh...........

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Cat-nap time...............

Baby Sister is napping in the "boy bed" some days; but it doesn't have enough stuffing for her old arthritic joints. I need to open it up and stuff a piece of her "fleece" pad shown here into the center. But some days she likes the fleece without the bed! Another cranky old lady lives here!

And this is the reason Sister cat isn't sleeping in HER pink, well-stuffed bed! Buddy/Bubba boy takes over whichever bed he thinks she wants to use, just to see if I'll make him move. Guess who won?


I see by my former posts that I'm slowing down and not posting to my blog nearly as often as I used to. The autumn's beautiful weather is one reason: I want to be outside in it as much as possible! And I'm not interested in much right now.......I guess we're waiting for DH's new knee to get put in soon, and then maybe while he's recuperating here, I can concentrate and get to work on some projects that are waiting! And the cold fronts that are shooting thru NC on a regular basis are playing havoc with my spinal osteo-arthritis pain as well; so bear with me and I'll be back on a more regular basis soon, I hope! Right now I'm off to read awhile with the cats (in the BIG bed, not one of the little cat beds!) Heh, heh.........

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

More autumn scenes........

The squirrels and other woodland critters leave this kind of proof every day of what they're having for lunch on the big rocks! They got ALL the pecans this year, they have hickory nuts and walnuts and buckeyes...............
and the woods are full of fruits for the wildlife. They all should be fat and sleek for the winter!

I have a handful of glorious zinnias and cosmos left blooming this week; they are just gorgeous. I guess they heard the weatherman saying we're gonna have nights down in the '40s this weekend, and very cool days! I'll go out and cut all the blooms before the cold front comes in so I can enjoy the flowers in the house. I'm always sad to see them go for the season.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Fall colors.............

The patches of wild morning glories around the farm are just bursting out with new blooms recently. I guess the few cold nights we had reminded them they'd better "do their thing" before winter sets in eventually!

..........and the yaupon tree in the front yard is just showing off with its gorgeous dress of red berries. The birds don't like these to eat as much as they do the dogwood berries, so when these leaves are gone from the yaupon soon, we will enjoy the burst of color against the naked tree and sky all winter.

.........and all the dozens of dogwood trees around here have made a good crop of berries this year, but the cardinals and bluebirds have almost eaten them all. But even if the berries disappear, the dogwoods' pretty leaves are turning their special shades of red and when the afternoon sun is on them, they're like a watercolor painting............

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Spooky things.................!

.........our very old black walnut tree loaded with nuts this year...............
.......the "outdoor cats" eyes glaring in the dark! They're sleeping on heating pads on the seat of the golf cart under a big shed out of the they have it made, or what???!!!!!!

.........and my October beaded ghost pin is finished!!! I wish her little orange seed bead eyes showed up better, but her required rhinestones are the two letter "0"s, in the "boo". And there is actually a space between the top and bottom parts of the exclamation point; it doesn't run together like it seems in this photo. I haven't decided yet what my November dolly will be....stay tuned!
.........and another spookier photo of the old walnut tree against the grey sky; it looks like it's reaching lots of "arm" limbs up to grab birds as they fly by! Hmmmmm...........wonder if animals celebrate Hallowe'en like we nutsy humans do? (They probably see us all costumed up and run as fast as they can in the other direction!) Heh, heh............

Friday, October 10, 2008

Reading and beading..........

These are my latest two library books I've enjoyed reading........both about the southeastern coastal waters and towns and people! If you love the ocean and beaches and good stories, these are for you, fantasy life is to live like the eccentric old lady in the big old "cottage" right on the sea's edge. She rides a bike to "town" and dresses in long, loose vintage clothing with beaded and embroidered scarves and big hats; and spends days abed among fluffy pillows reading to her heart's content! Ahhhh......
we old women can still DREAM, can't we???!!!!

And this is my latest project: an embellished evening clutch/purse using vintage bridal satin from old dresses........this is the front. Click on the photos so you can see the white-on-white beads and sequins! The scattered tiny dots on the front are little pearls, and on the back I used Swarovski delica crystal glass the sparkle!
This is the back of the purse, using pieces of the daughter's debutante gown from the 1960s. (This is a commission piece for an elderly friend who, like me, cannot bear to part with gorgeous vintage needlework and fabric and handmade thingies!) Now her grown daughter will have a meaningful surprise birthday gift soon, and it will bring back memories of her southern heritage as a debutante at the ball many years ago!

The lining is just a white-on-white design cotton fabric, and I used little pieces of white "hook-and-loop" for the unseen closure under the flap. This was a joy to work on, because my favorite part of any project is the fun of digging through my stashes for just the right embellishments, and seeing it all come together. Of course, it's especially nice when the customer first sees it and says, "Oh, how LOVELY it is!" Thank you, my creative muse... now we're off to try our hand at painting glass Christmas tree ornaments like I did for many years awhile back. With the economy bottoming out, I'm having to resurrect all my latent talents and pray my hands don't shake and my eyes hold out, because Christmas is coming! And Santa needs help!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Hallowe'en is near!!!

Check out our cousins next door and their roadside display of wonderfully handmade and painted plywood Hallowe'en ghosts and pumpkins made with sharp sticks to put into the ground! LOVE that candy corn!

Here's Don, master craftsman with his saws and tools, showing me around the whole great menagerie of "spooks" he's made to sell......he said wife Ann and their cute little grandkids helped paint every one of these!

I love the big black cat sitting on the moon; be sure to click on the photos to enlarge them and enjoy the wonderful detail they put into their art works! They've been selling like hot-cakes; I hope they will make some for the upcoming Christmas season, too! (Thanks for painting my little pumpkins and black cat I got for my yard, Cuz Harley and Kendal!)


.........and look what I found in friend Betty R.'s yard Sunday! A wonderful stuffed "pumpkin man" sitting in an antique wheel barrow, surrounded by some of her gorgeous flowers and greens........ is he a happy camper, or not?!! You should SEE the cute Hallowe'en thingies in her pie safe on the deep front porch, and her little groupings inside the house! I hope she'll take pix of all her decorations and put them on her blog to take us on a virtual "tour"!!! (Check out her blog listed near the top of my side bar on the right here: Love 2 Sew; or Knot Sew Square.) Thanks, Betty, for the "interruption" Sunday and the quick tour of your place!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Haying time.............

This little bronze yard marker has been lost in the weeds for many years; I found it recently while mowing and brought it home. It got a new coat of white paint and I stuck it in the ground across our driveway where the deer herd crosses most nights. I wonder if they will "obey" the instructions?!
Heh, heh............

Here's the peaceful sight I see on my morning walks since the hayfields got cut and baled! I love this curving path winter and summer, spring and fall.

Here are a couple of "hay balls" near our house and yard; you can see our little log tobacco barn in the center of the trees. Click to enlarge and you can see it much better! DH says these bales weigh about 1,000 lbs. each! I'm glad somebody's cows will have hay to eat this winter when it's cold and sleeting! Something new this year: the man wrapped some of the bales in a webbed plastic sheeting instead of just twine..........hmmm. Wondering what I could do with a piece of the netting in some art projects?!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Gobble, gobble!!!!!

This turkey had gotten inside the fence the other morning when I went for my morning walk..........the other five were outside in the pasture and took off. She spent a few minutes running up and down the fence before she remembered she could FLY up OVER the thing to get out! Duh.
This is Mr. Cotton Blaylock and his security blanket..........he's growing leaps and bounds and is gonna be a gorgeous doggy! (He's another of my many four-legged "cousins" here in the neighborhood!)

The lichen growing on this stick is the "normal" kind I see around here all the time, but this fat piece with long arms is a new one..........isn't it delicate and beautiful???!!!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

.......told ya!

........see how pretty the other wreath is on our little log cabin door?! The one-room barn used to be a tobacco curing barn WAY out in the country in Warren County here, and my DH and nephew numbered the pieces, took it apart, re-assembled it in our side yard many years ago for my retail shop for my handmade arts and crafts. That lasted for nine years and was lots of fun to decorate for each holiday, and to know that people liked my work enough to drive out here and pay REAL money for it!!! Heh, heh........
.......check out the old weathered wood the barn door is made of.......oh, if it could only talk!
I've been addicted to the "Lincoln Rhyme" novels by Jeffery Deaver for years, and this latest one is as good as all the rest! One of those I just couldn't put down and hated for the end to arrive. Hurry Jeffery, and whip out another one soon!

And this little beaded dolly is my first in a year-long series that I'll be making for the Beaded Journal Project.........since we have to finish one each month and Christmas is nearing, I chose a small size! All mine will be this same shape and include rhinestones/parts of vintage jewelry. This one is carrying a little "scepter" that used to be part of a ladies' pin and still has its original little stones intact. Her face is cut from a piece of fabric, and the rhinestones are on the tips of her crown, but they don't show up well at all here. The next dolly is almost done for October, and is turning out to be a really cute "ghost"! You'll see her later in the month............

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Autumn is here!

Isn't this the prettiest little square wreath, and can you believe how the berries match our weird pink/red door?!! And I'm also surprised I got it because I do NOT like "artificial" thingies........floral thingies especially. Unless they look REAL! I had to keep feeling these fuzzy leaves the whole time I was looking around in the local florist shop........ I ended up buying the two matching ones she had; one for the back door here, and the other I'll show you later on the log cabin door in the yard. That one is mighty pretty also against the old weathered wooden door.

This "quilty" story was pretty good, and I finished it up quickly.........I've been avoiding art and reading a lot recently. Love to just "get lost" in good stories or read about interesting people. (Preferably somebody much worse off than my family's puny little problems, so I'll feel better!) Heh, heh.........I know........I'm a sick old woman. Thank God my mama loved to read and read to me as a child and instilled the love of books in me!

And here you see an example of "October's Bright Blue Weather", which was part of a poem Miss Sadie Limer taught me in the third grade, way back in 1953! She took our little class on an outing uptown and pointed out that wonderful, special shade of BLUE that comes to the south in October, and I never see it that I don't think of Miss Limer. She was very old-fashioned, very strict, and we were scared to death of her, but for some reason she made us WANT to learn the lessons and to please her! And she was one of my first early art admirers; she always encouraged us to make handmade cards for our parents for every occasion and holiday. My special cards were for Valentine's Day, and long after I was a grown married woman, I made and mailed her my special handmade Valentines every year. They were filled with calligraphy and lace and paper doilies and little red stick-on cherubs and hearts of gold and glitter..........I wonder what became of them after she died. I STILL love to make valentines, whether out of papers or fabrics or I guess I've moved on up to being a "mixed media" artist in my old age!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I got awards!!!

I'm so blessed to have nice folks who read and let me know they enjoy my blog. One new online friend, Janet lives way off in the United Kingdom and sent me BOTH of these awards awhile back. I have just learned how to transfer them here to show off! Thank you, Janet! (She does the most gorgeous knitting and embroidery and other needlework you've ever seen!) Do visit her blog sometime:

Sorry I've been "missing in action" for awhile and hope to be back here on a regular basis soon. I miss everybody and their blogs, and reading my emails! We've had not one, but TWO deaths in our families the last ten days; one a blessed relief for a dear aunt who's been ill for months and could not get off the respirator. The other is my brother-in-law who fell from a ladder and hit his head on a concrete floor while feeding up their horses. He'd been very wobbly and in a walker for months; we don't know why he was even in the barn. Our little family would welcome your thoughts and prayers...............and I hope all my friends in blogland are well and creating ART! I'll get back to that next week also, hopefully. God bless us, every one.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Autumn things...........

We finally, thank God, got a decent rain from the hurricane's remnant storms! We are still in a drought situation, but every three inches like this helps, and the fish in the farm pond enjoyed some fresh oxygen, I'm sure.
This ugly red scum on the pond is from the literally hundreds of cedar trees of several kinds growing around this's sort of like their kind of "pollen". The recent three inches of rain cleared it away, thankfully.......and the water is almost back to the pier's "feet" once again!
.........and here's another sweet photo of the Bubba/Buddy house cat; you can see he makes himself at home on every bed and chair and blanket or pillow he can find! And he's getting FAT! He chows down day and night, whenever the notion hits; we'll weigh him next week and see if he's added any more pounds to the six he's gained already!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Beading again.........

This is my first monthly (September's) beaded art doll that I'm making for the next twelve consecutive months. I'm thinking she's going to be a mermaid and have fringes and fishes hanging from the bottom! Stay tuned.
Don't these cute little mushrooms look just like little drinking cups for fairies in the forest?!! Some are tiny and they kept their cup-shape instead of flattening out, for some reason. A first for me, so of course they got their photo taken!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Signs of fall.............

I have these snow white mushrooms popping up near the salt block for the deer in the side yard.........the flat=topped white mushrooms/toadstools will be eaten by the squirrels, but I haven't seen them eat this fat kind yet.
We also have huge "fairy circles" in the pastures of white and tan larger ones growing.........'tis the season, I guess! The big tan ones look just like pancakes w/maple syrup on them!

And I dread seeing our beloved dogwood trees start to look like this in the fall of the year. It means they look pretty for awhile before dropping their leaves, but then the "nekkid" tree skeletons are everywhere to see all winter! And I caught the cardinals eating the red dogwood berries off the trees one day like they were starving to death! Hope a few seeds make it to the ground to make baby trees next spring! The bluebirds also love the dogwood berries, and thank goodness we had good crops of them this year in nearly all our nesting boxes around the farm.