Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Words of Christ from the Cross

My friend Stanley wrote a great post in celebration of Holy Week.  I highly recommend reading it as you prepare your hearts for this coming weekend.
You can read Stanley's post here:

Friday, April 15, 2011

I Was Featured!

Yay!  My "Light Fixture Refurbish" project was featured on three other blogs!  I'm so happy that others enjoyed the results as much as I did... and it's SUCH an easy project!  Especially since the light I used already had a wonderfully aged patina... no painting involved!  All you need is an old light, cutters, candles, and some creativity!  It literally only took a couple of hours to complete in full (except for the new glass panels that I still need to buy... which I would have already bought if Menard's sold glass).  

So thanks to "Craft Goodies," "Brambleberry Cottage" and "Designer Garden" for your kind words!  Make sure to stop on by their sites.  All three blogs are full of inspiring photos and ideas :-)


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The Perfect Saturday

Saturday we had Kevin's Parent's and Grandparents over for lunch.  In Kevin's family, Saturday tradition is to have hot dogs for lunch... and for those of you who don't know:

Family + Warm Weather + Chicago Style Hot Dogs = the PERFECT Saturday

Kevin's grandpa had a special treat for us when he came...  You see I had gotten Kevin an old phonograph this past Christmas:

I bought it off someone on Craigslist who had inherited it from another family member.  I couldn't believe he wanted to sell it!  And yesterday, since Kevin's Grandpa knew we had a phonograph, he brought over a few records to give us!

Would you like to here how it sounds?  I bet you do!  (Please excuse the wind noise and nauseating filming)  Here's a song from one of Grandpa's records called "Lillian" by King Cole and his Trio:

And wouldn't you know it, the next day our phonograph broke!  There I was, sitting on our front steps listening to a Charlie Parker song waft through the open windows and thinking, "It's amazing we have this old machine that still works, I wonder if our future kids will be able to enjoy it." and as the song came to an end, so did our phonograph.  

Okay, it's probably not the end of it, I think the coil/spring that you wind up snapped or detached because all of a sudden it made a shuddering sound and the handle started rapidly spinning backwards by itself.  Sigh.  Anyone know a good phonograph repairman?  

Here's hoping it's relatively easy and inexpensive to figure out myself...

Sunday, April 10, 2011

A Simple Sunday...

...spent outside in the sunshine.

And it was enjoyed by all the residents of Claremont Avenue :-)

Friday, April 8, 2011

Please Excuse the Construction

I haven't settled on a permanent design for my blog yet... though it's getting there.  One thing I just learned how to do was to make my blog   w  i  d  e  r   overall.  Notice how the gray strips on the side are smaller?

For those of you that have Blogger blogs (I like saying that, haha) you know that the Template Designer provides an easy way to change the size of your blog under the "Adjust widths" tab... and yet the widest setting still wasn't as wide as I'd like.  And it seemed that some other blogs out there ARE wider then the widest setting...  Hmmm.

I knew that anything the Template Designer can do can also be done through html coding (plus more!) but that's something I have noooooo knowledge of.  So I searched "how to adjust width of entire blog html code" on Google and found this site on my second click.  Exactly what I needed to know!

I made the change to 1200px... but widening Claremont Avenue has messed with the original alignment of all its content.  Eek!  This means I now need to go through and correct everything little by little.

I hope that you will forgive the messiness while I work to correct everything!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

My First (Real) Follower

I just wanted to take a moment to thank Brandy over at "Just Our Style" who became my very first *REAL follower!
*aka someone other than my husband and myself

Check out her Blog here:

She has a beautiful site with a ton of amazing ideas!

Thanks Brandy!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Light Fixture Refurbish

My grandpa is an avid garage saler and known for bringing family members surprise "gifts" that he thinks we'll like.  Fortunately I LOVE this about him because I am a big fan of all things old and beat-up.  At the shower this weekend he dropped off this interesting salvage from my aunt's old house:

It was outdated, dusty, and a little more Indian themed then my taste prefers... but I saw some potential here.  Little did my grandpa know, I had been looking for an old light fixture that I could refurbish into a candle chandelier for our back porch.  The glass panels and open top meant this fixture would be perfect for just such a thing!

I started by taking the whole thing apart.  I needed to remove all the electrical components so I could replace the white tubes with candles!  I also took out the black glass panels since I wanted to replace them with clear glass.

Here's what I found inside the base of the fixture:

The wires ran up the white tubes to each bulb as well as up through the center of the fixture to the would-be ceiling wires.  A few snips with a pair of garden cutters (shears?) and it all pulled free.

This is how it looked laid out:

The little black cups towards the right used to hold the white tubes on the left.  I decided I would reused the black cups to hold candles just like they did the white tubes.

It turned out real candles were a little wobbly in the black cups so I needed to find something to help hold the candles securely.  I also needed some new bolts to reattach everything because the old ones weren't going to work.

Me: "Kevin?  You want to go with me to the hardware store?"

Kevin: Groan

So off to the hardware store we went :-)  Here's what I got:

Washers, bolts and some chair tips.

Turns out the chair tips fit PERFECTLY into the black cups:

So now that my candles were sure to be snug, I put everything back together.

And as soon as it got dark I decided to give it a try!

I didn't have the new glass in yet, so the flames blew out whenever a big gust of wind came.  But it sure provided a good amount of light when lit!

I can't decide whether I want to use it as a hanging light like I originally intended or as a table-top lantern...  What do you think?

The shadows it threw on the ground were very pretty.

Thanks Grandpa!

I'm linking up to the following:                                                                                           This post was featured on the following:

Since I'm trying to spread the word about my blog I've chosen to link up to a LOT of parties... I'm guessing in doing so I may have unintentionally made some errors in my links.  Let me know if you find any such errors or if I forgot to add your link altogether!

Bridal Shower Success!

I don't have pictures ready to post yet... but Brittany's shower was a wonderful time!  Thank you to everyone who was able to be there, the turnout was amazing.  The bride-to-be looked beautiful and I'm sure she had as good a time as I did :-) 

Congratulations Brittany and Josh!  I can't wait for the big day!!!