Sunday, February 7, 2016

Let me reintroduce you to The Decorative Dreamer

Hi again everyone!  Can I interrupt your Super Bowl Sunday for just a bit, please?  You see,  I can't help but notice how quite it is here in MY blog world.  Is anyone out there?  Anyone remember me?  I sure hope so because I would love to start connecting again.  Yes, it's been quite a while since I blogged regularly and things sure have changed quite a bit.  I hope I haven't lost all of my blog friends in my extended absence.   It's definitely not like it used to be, but whew, I wasn't prepared for this silence.

I got to thinking maybe I should reintroduce myself.   Hello!  That's me above.  My name is Mary, aka The Decorative Dreamer.  I have a wonderful husband, and two sons whom are out of the house.  Well, one is at college but the other is out on his own.  I have a beautiful pup (lovely little girl) who makes me smile everyday.   I take horrible selfies, so this was the only way I could get a good updated photo of myself using the old mirror trick.

I am updating my blog again and I hope you will welcome me back or begin to follow along if your brand new.  I am not a professional blogger nor do I aspire to be.  I simply enjoy sharing my life and connecting with others who are like minded.   I have often wondered how to describe my blog.  I finally realized that I am a lifestyle blogger who mostly enjoys sharing home decor, thrifting and some crafting in addition to my other life activities in general.  I am now learning embroidery on my new home machine and will be sharing that as well.  This is just one of the many different things you will see on my blog.

 Here is a sneak peek of my home style.  This is a collage of some of my home as it looks now.  Hopefully now that I am at home again, this year will bring a few fun and decorative desired changes here and there.

I love thrift stores, yard sales and antique stores.  I frequent them often on the lookout for beautiful bargains or possible makeovers.  I found this cookie jar just this week at a booth that was having a 75% off sale.  She must be closing up shop, so I slowed it down and dug around until I spotted this beauty. Its a Raymond Waites pattern.

I just love the soft coloring of this jar.  I knew it would be a perfect accent piece for my kitchen.  Don't you just love the little bee?  I do!

Just when I was about to leave I spotted this cake plate tucked way in the back of a shelf.  It's a little rough for ware but no chips or dings and will make a nice accent piece as well.  I think I'll keep it here in the dining room (maybe on the wall) since I have similar plates with this pattern displayed in here already.

This brings me to why I am returning to blogging.  Along with wanting to share a bit of my life and style I hope to also gain some feedback.  Compliments are always nice but I would love some advice from time to time as well.  I gain so many ideas for decorating from perusing blogs and often get some inspiration to do something in my own way.  There are also many times that something I want to do isn't coming together quite right and I would love to get your feedback.  So I hope you'll feel free to drop me a tip anytime, especially when I ask (or beg) for help.  It would be greatly appreciated!

This year I hope to share more of my outdoor life as well.  I want to work in the yard more this year and do a little more gardening.  My yard has a good bit of shade and full sun both are very challenging.  I  want to enjoy the pool more as well with a bit more outdoor entertaining.

My husband and I also love sailing.  This is our newest boat.  It is a Catalina 30 we purchased in November of 2014.  This past summer we enjoyed seeing how it sailed and getting it back up to snuff.  Currently we have it pulled out of the water for a few repairs and primarily to get a new paint job on the bottom.  My husband is doing the work himself and it's all going very well.  You can expect to see a few post about our sailing adventures as well.

Lastly but certainly not least, my beautiful little girl Maizey.  She is a sweet little Cavachon who will be two years old on February 11th.  She has turned our lives upside down but in a very good way.  You can expect to see her show up here from time to time too, especially since she is always by my side.  I love her!!!

Well there you have it friends!  I love for you to drop by to visit from time to time.   I'll be right here just keeping my own little record of our happy side of life with pictures and commentary.  I think one day it will be kinda cool for my kids to see this as time goes on.

You can also follow me here on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.  I have follow links on the side bar of my blog above as well.  I am not the most consistent poster, I'm kinda low maintenance that way.  I do however value my name and persona as The Decorative Dreamer very much.  I've logged on to many social media outlets not so much as to build up my following (though that is so very sweet and desirable) but more to help my followers get a better image of who I really am.  While there is much to be said for monitoring privacy online there is also a good bit of value in having multi social contacts to protect my identity in the event of a hack.  Please contact me immediately should you ever see anything posted by me that is out of character.  I certainly don't expect anything but I've seen way too many hacks by some very loving people who had to close out their social platforms.  I really don't ever want to have to do that because I love sharing on this blog!

Please feel free to send me a message via comments on how I can improve your visits!  If you see anything wrong technically with my blog I would especially love to hear from you.  I am open for any and all expertise I can get.   I still have so much to learn regarding blogging.  Your advice is much appreciated, always!!!

Hugs and Waves!  (that's my new sign off, from a dreamy nautical loving girl)

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Anchored in Love or Romance in the Kitchen?

What's your Valentines style?  I am sure it wouldn't be to big of surprise to hear I'm a little bit of both.  Sorry friends, no true confessions or seedy love stories here today just a few pretties around the house all dressed up for Valentines. 

Yesterday while I was thumbing through Pinterest looking for more cork hearts I came across a pin for an anchor and well let's just say it was the bomb for me. You know the big OMG bomb!

I have had all these corks (minus the one bag I just about emptied on todays project) for quite some time.   I knew I would do something really cool with them eventually but had yet to find anything I was super inspired to actually try.  I have found a few really beautiful cork wreaths yet they looked so intimidating.  This project however was just right up my ally.

So last night, I lined up my corks to make the anchor and then got my work station in my craft room all ready.  This morning after coffee and my last blog post requesting help, I popped upstairs and fired up the glue gun.

 This project took so little time once the gluing began.  I was amazed at how fast it went without any issues, with the exception of one blistered thumb that got in the way of progress.    I know some of you may be thinking what's the big deal?  Well, the big deal is I didn't just pin it, or share it, or like it, I actually did it and that is a big deal!  Anyone can be an observer, but I am in action mode now days.

 I just love how cute these are!  This Valentines display is definitely one I can relate to.  Besides being sailing partners, I have always referred to my husband as my anchor here on Earth.  He is the one who keeps my feet on the ground and keeps things stable when needed.  He reassures all will be well if all is well between us.  What a blessing from God is our relationship!

 I decided to put this display on the coffee table with some faux roses I have used for Valentines many times over.  Sorry, no fancy smancy floral display in here, I like keeping things simple sometimes.   I did think the Rewine candle next to it was quite appropriate though.  I love the smell of these candles.  If you haven't tried one yet you really need too they are wonderful!

One more little small update in the den was I added a metal X and O to the Love plaque I made and have sitting on the mantle.  I found these yesterday at Michaels when I went to buy some more glue sticks.  They are part of the Mark It collection they have and are on sale this week.

 While I kept things simple in the den, I couldn't help but get a little more lavish in the kitchen.  More specifically on my tiered metal plate rack.  Love, love, love how this turned out as well.  Why have I not used this for displays more often?  Let the romance begin!

I've had this pretty metal dish rack in the kitchen for some time now. I have recently been tiring of its location and I tried moving it several times but due to the height this is the best spot.  I even thought about getting rid of it before I decided to try using it more for a display piece as opposed to a functional piece.  Sounds kinda crazy I know, to be so excited about this.  But I'm glad to have a new focus for this rack and I really enjoy putting these types of displays together.

 The first thing I knew I wanted to use was my heart plates.  These are just some inexpensive melamine salad size plates I picked up a few years ago.  They sure do make a cute display when their not serving up a whole lotta lovin!

The next things I knew I wanted to use were my cupid angels.  Aren't they so sweet?  I've had these plastic angels forever.  They are what set the tone for the rest of the display.  I think they are so romantic and somewhat Victorian looking.   After looking around the house I decided polished and tarnished silver would be a nice fit for the Victorian look and how perfectly appropriate in a romantic theme.  Yeah, see I'm really thinking it though here, the ups and downs of romance and all!

Talk about the downside of romance, this little beauty is sitting on her jar of hearts. She has quite the collection doesn't she? 

Poor dear, maybe one day she will also find someone with a heart of gold to lavish her with hugs and kisses daily.  These sweet X and O's also came from Michaels yesterday. They are quite heavy little things.  Very cute and all letters are available in the whole alphabet.

I am linking up to one party today.  I may join a few of these from time to time but taking it slow so I can be sure and check out the other party goers posts as well.  Let's see what going on for... 

Thanks so much for stopping by dreamer friends!
Hugs and Waves!

I need basic and technical blogging advice

Help!  Please anyone who is still following who has a few spare moments can I pick your brain?

I need a bit of advice on a few basic and a few technical issues I am having with my blog.  I promise I have more pretties to share but I want to make sure my posts are going out correctly first.  I believe I may be missing a few steps that might really help increase the traffic flow.  I know it sounds silly or even somewhat vain to want to increase flow.  However,  I kinda feel like if I am going to take the time to create a post I do want those who are interested to be able to easily connect.  Here are a few areas that I would love some guidance with...

My Comment Name;
How do I get my name to change back to The Decorative Dreamer in comments?  Since I am on google plus I have lost my blog name on comments and cannot seem to change it back without giving up google plus and going back to blogger format.  Is there a way to do it that I am just not seeing?  This one is a biggie for me because I want people to know who I am when I comment.

Post Settings;
Does anyone have expertise on explaining the importance of the Post Settings on blogger?  Mostly, using labels and Search Description.  I had been using labels (when I remember) after reading that is important but am now reading that the Search Description may be more important because it is what helps others find your post.  Secondly, I have no idea what to put in the permalinks, what the heck is that all about?  What if any of these are any of you using regularly?

Follow Buttons;
I have a few buttons that I have added to help people follow but am still missing buttons such as for Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.  I would love to add those cute little icon buttons and have found a site called "Add this" I joined but am having trouble with where to add their first link text (they said in the body) before I can add the buttons text. Does this mean to add it to my content? Where do I add their permanent link?  I am so confused?  If you don't use them and use something else that might be more user friendly, please, please, please redirect me.

SEO's and Robots
This one I want to know about very loosely because the more I read the more confused I am getting on the subject of SEO's and Robots.  I know they are two entirely different things but I do think they are both somehow linked together and important to making sure traffic is coming in properly.  So with that being said, the only think I want to know is where to look and what to look for to make sure I have this set up properly. I would prefer someone else take a look and say yeah, looks good or no you need to do this because it sure would save me a huge amount of time.  LOL!  If you know of anyone who offers this type of service please advise.

I realize this is asking a lot and can be very time consuming to explain so if any of you have links you can share with me on where to go to read up more on any of this I would definitely appreciate that too.  I would love to have a blog mentor if anyone is interested.

I am working on a finishing up a few projects to share soon, so I hope I'll be back with a pretty post in just a bit.

Thanks so much!
Hugs and Waves!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Sharing a Little LOVE

Good morning again dreamer friends!  Two posts in one week, whew, look out!

Yesterdays post was mostly all about letting go with a few sneak peeks at my latest embroidery adventures.  I am sure some of you who have followed over the years were not surprised to see such long windedness though.  Don't worry, it's not going to be a habit here at the Decorative Dreamer, but if you know me you do know I can go on a bit from time to time.  No worries here, it was closure and we are moving on!  Life is good!

Todays post is definitely back to norm sharing pretties and such.  These flowers are just a few oldies that I have hung onto forever and day and never put in a display.  I pulled them out at Christmas and have kept them out for Valentines too.  I am thinking they may not make it back to storage.  I may have to donate them to someone who will appreciate them more then I.  However, they will get their show of a little love for the season.

Yesterday I finished up the plaque I was working on and wanted to share it with you today.

As I showed in yesterdays post this is the beginning stages.  I first embroidered the word LOVE using a font that I purchased for my machine  I like the swirly look to all the capital letters of this font.
When I stitched it out it puckered a bit because I guess I didn't have quite the right stabilizer.  I'm still in a learning curve so give me a break on that okay?  Okay! 
I found an old piece of wood in our garage where I keep my husbands scraps and spray painted it red.  I used Krylon Cherry Red.  I love how deep the color is.

Then after cutting out the word, I added a little modge podge to the underside of the fabric and the edges.  I even tried to give them a frayed edge look but it was kinda hard to get this fabric to fray.  I was definitely going for a more rustic homemade look. 

 I already had the black and white jute, flowers and floating glitter hearts on hand as well.  All it needed was a little glue from the glue gun and I was done.  Sew simple, and sew sweet!  Those are terms I am picking up from my embroidery group. 

I still haven't really gotten into full on Valentines decorating yet.  Have you?  I am getting there a little bit at a time.

I am taking my time with pulling it all out so I can think on it more.  You know dreaming a bit!

Well, that's all I've got to share for today.  Oh wait, let me reshare this plaque from my kitchen one more time with you.  It's kinda filled with LOVE inspiration too.  Don't cha think?
  It's been such a strong focus of mine to live by these words everyday. 
Look how the camera flash highlights God.
Love it!

I'm linking up to
Treasure Hunt Thursday
Stop by the link above to check out lots more treasures.

Hope your day and weekend is filled with all that bring you joy!
Thanks so much for dropping in again,
Hugs and Waves!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Is My Heart Really Offcentered?

Or is it just a little out of place?  Take a look and tell me what you think, okay?
This post contains a very personal account of recent life lessons not usually shared or reflective of my blog sharing decor.  I shared and wrote this post not with anger or with hate but in love to share my side of the story.  Why go there?  I shared publicly because I felt the need to give an accounting of my personal feelings of this story since there are other accounts being shared very publicly to my discredit.  I have already healed and moved on.  This post was intended to share that point.  There are always two sides to every story and will share mine publically as well in all fairness. It is my sincerest wish that all will continue to move on without further turning back.

I first saw this adorable chalk picture at Hobby Lobby and I immediately fell in LOVE!  Unfortunately, at the time I was there to purchase something else and this was well let's just say, it was a whimsy of desire.  One that my wallet wasn't able to afford in good conscience now that I am no longer working. Additionally, I knew I could do this myself.  So, I stood there looking at this beautiful heart that spoke to me for some time, then I snapped a photo and moved on.   I'm actually kinda pleased with how it turned out since I don't do chalkboard drawings too well  Not so happy with the fact that I didn't get it centered on my chalkboard though.  I may have to just break down and paint this one day because I know I can get it centered right then.  For now I'm keeping this one up and enjoying it because I'm moving on to other things already.

I've got other projects going on like crazy!  In this project above I'm still waiting on the block to dry.  I am going to cut out my word that I embroidered, glue it on and add a few more embellishments.  I can't wait to finish this because I am LOVIN this one.
Now if you thought this post was just going to be about an off centered chalk heart and home d├ęcor you'd be only partially correct.  It is that and I've lots of pics to share but this post goes a lot deeper then that.  This post is about so much more.  This is my letting go post, my surrendering of my hurt heart and refocusing on my very grateful heart. 

The chalk heart spoke to me so very much because this is something I really need to be reminded of daily.  I really am so very grateful for quite a bit, especially for my husband and my family who are such gracious gifts to me from God.  I am really going to work hard this year on reminding myself on how very grateful I am for our beautiful home also, even though there are things I would love to change.  Correction, I am bound to change!  I am so grateful to be at home again enjoying my life and the fact that I can be at home if I choose too.  This is such a blessing and don't I know it! I am adding so many home interests this year and am feeling quite pleased with how well things are going so far.  I have always enjoyed decorating, crafting and painting and now I get to enjoy embroidering too.  I also want to focus more on some gardening this year as well when it warms up again. 

Here is another quote that just speaks to me, I also embroidered this myself.    Even when I worked, coffee at home first thing in the morning has always been a staple.  Sorry, but I've never been one of those Starbucks groupies.  I absolutely love when both the Mr. and I are home to enjoy coffee time together.  My husband enjoys our coffee time too and he really liked this towel when he saw it.  Its an old dishtowel I wanted to use for practice and the first thing out of his mouth was, "Can I still use this towel?"  Men!  Of course you can, sweetie!

  Let me tell you, I am so grateful to that man for getting me an embroidery machine for Christmas.  I have wanted one for so very long, but working in an embroidery store it's never been a priority to have my own.  It was a stretch for our budget at that time since I had just stopped working right before the holidays.   This single gift means so much to me because my husband knew how much I loved it and because he wanted to give me back something that I had lost.

I have been working very hard to learn my new machine.  These are a few more dishtowels I did using a few designs I purchased online.  Aren't they cute?

  I've not only had to learn how to use the embroidery machine but I've had to learn how to use computer software as well. Currently, I am using a very limited software program until I can afford to upgrade to a program with more options.  I like options!  For now though this is good and I've still got so much to learn.  Like getting things centered correctly instead of just eyeballing it as I tend to do.  LOL!  I still have so much to learn on what stabilizers to use for what materials and how to go about editing designs and so forth.  I have been happily redoing my craft/sewing room.  Oh, the organizational ideas I am finding for that.  So fun!

  Despite all the enjoyment and how very blessed I know I am, sometimes you just can't help looking back.  Thinking about what you have lost when it is something you enjoyed, is hard. Leaving my job was a decision that I made but what a mess I made of leaving. It was messy and I would change that if I could but I can't.  I waited too long and held out too much hope of change for what I wanted when I really already knew it wasn't going to happen.  It wasn't going to happen because the one in this case expected to change was supposed to have been me.  But should a lion become a lamb? Nooo, I don't think so!   I also do not quite think that was God's command when he said: "The Lion and the Lamb shall lie down together" in Isaiah.  I don't think he expects lions to change or lambs to change from what they are, but I do believe he wants them to get along and to have love for each other.   

This dish towel is one of the very first few embroideries I did.  It turned out beautifully.  I love finding designs online now.  Be forewarned though, if you get into home embroidery, it's quite addicting!

  In both my work and my personal life I when I do something I am one of those people who throws myself into things whole heartedly.   I am a Lion in the work place.  I always work hard and I am often rewarded with moving quickly up the ladder.  It's happened in many of the jobs I've held.  I tend to be promoted because when I am at work my focus is always on my job. I don't blur the lines between employment and socializing at work.  For me that's a very slippery slope to invest in and often seen as not very professional.  Socializing for me has always been something you do mostly outside of work.  Work socializing is important but I've always considered it should be more limited.   I guess that's old school in todays society! 

  I am personable, kind and courteous of my customers and my coworkers.   I do however tend to also expect my coworkers to hold the same values I do about their jobs as well as the same excitement about getting things done.  This is where the lion runs into trouble for being a lion, when there is more emphasis on lambs being lambs that graze well together.   Don't get me wrong, I am not one of those veracious lions that dominates the pack though to a lamb I guess maybe I am.    I am more the lion that isn't afraid to lead, who quietly moves along getting things done.  Lions don't back down to challenges nor do lions have trouble roaring about all that needs to be done when it sees much to be done.  It is just how they are.  I am the lion that starts her cubs out gently, but nudges them on when they need to be redirected.  And just like a real lion, I get a little testy when I have to constantly nudge over extended amounts of time.  Lions are very protective have huge strong hearts and have much to offer to those in their pack.  Sadly, it is very hard for a lion to stay a lion with lambs that constantly celebrate being lambs and who loose sight of the value of the lion in their midst.   Because a lion knows no matter how hard it tries, it will never be a lamb.  Nor can a lion survive as a lone wolf just because the lambs prefer it that way.   True love comes when the heart is open, accepting and forgiving.   

Letting go is never easy.  Sometimes love asks you to sacrifice your own hopes in favor of another's.  I lived and worked hard and I loved.  I gave what I had to give.  I tried, I really did.  Eventually, I had to close that door because it was just to painful to keep it open when you don't belong.  My mistake was in waiting too long.  It is not wrong though for the lion to remain a lion anymore then it is for the lambs to be the lambs.  Remarkable will the day when they all lie down together: lambs as lambs, and lions as lions. I am sure there are those who will see things differently, that's okay. 

I've given this all to God daily and I am moving on.  I am so grateful to God for all my blessings.  The blessings of good times remembered and lessons learned.  The blessing of welcoming love at home and the blessing of time.  I know time will continue to heal my heart that is not really off centered, it was just a little out of place.

Much Love,
Hugs and Waves

Thursday, January 21, 2016

It's Time for Snow Angels in South Carolina!

What?  Did I say that?  Shut my mouth!  Girl, you know that ain't gonna happen.  LOL!  

Sorry folks, just having a little fun this morning and sharing some very common phrases or comments you might hear when mentioning snow in our state.  The weathermen are saying there are parts of SC that might get a little snow but I do think it is going to be further north then where I am.    Snow in SC is such a rare thing that we all have quite the strange love hate relationship with it. I think for the most part we love it temporarily at best.  We love short lived storms with very little ice where people can get out and play for a day or two and then it's life back to normal.  Right???

Gurrrl, you know it's true!  One of our most favorite things to do in the snow is make snow angels.  I often wonder if its more of a southern thing or do they enjoy doing this up north too?  When ever there is snow my Facebook is lit up with pictures of snow angels.  It's not uncommon to hear people say, we had so much snow we able to make snow angels!  Wow, now that's a lot of snow!  LOL!   

Now friends our winter has been so tame this year I wasn't going to do a winter mantle.  I just wasn't going to do it.  Honestly, I wasn't, noooo, not me, scouts honor!  In fact just thinking about it seemed so ridiculous to me because our winter has been so very warm this year. But then I got to looking at blogs on the internet and oouuing and ahhing and such.  Then the weatherman was on TV (every hour) suggesting that we may be getting some flurries, this weekend, maybe.  You know where this is going right?  Yep, one thing led to another!  

 I'm not exactly sure how it all came to be, but somehow I remembered these pretty little metal angel wings I purchased a few weeks ago from Hobby Lobby.  I guess my little old pea brain just put two and two together and decided I wanted to make a snow angel even if we didn't get any snow.  So I did!

I realize some of you might find this quite comical, but honestly, I love it! 

 I bought these wings because eventually I want to hang them in my bedroom.  But first, I want to attach them to some wooden boards.  I haven't had the time to finish up that project yet so they were still sitting in the bag on the dining room table collecting dust.  But not anymore!

Love, love, love this!
I am even sitting here now just adoring these beautiful wings with a great big old smile on my face. 

 After remembering the wings, I went and found the one small little bag I had of a few things I have collected for winter decorating.  I felt like the little white star wire garland was perfect for making wisps of clouds around the wings.  Maybe it's just my imagination in overdrive, but it's just so magical for me!  I can see it!  Do you see it too?  No?  Here, take another look!

Oh, now you do, that's better now, right?

Next I added just a few snowflakes here and there because it's all I had on hand in my little winter bag.  I suppose I could have gone out and bought more but remember I really wasn't decorating for winter this year.  Nooooo siree!  Not meee!!!

I then scattered a few snow balls here and there and I was done.  The cute little white sparkly styrofoam balls and white sequined balls were all purchased a few years ago at Michaels after Christmas sale.  I've used them once before.  They were all sitting there in my little winter bag too.   Sooo, I guess it's a good thing I CHANGED my mind.  

There's that word again.  My word for the year, CHANGE.  It just keeps poppin up over and over again.  I think it's going to be a great year!

Thanks so much for stopping by today!  I really do appreciate your visits.  If you live further up north where the snow storms are please be safe, I'll be praying for you.  I hope you all stay warm and if you get a chance to get outside and play, maybe you could make a few snow angels.
I promise it will be fun!

Hugs and Waves!