Look What I Got

I am a lover of reinvention; whether it be through the disassembly of an old, ugly quilt(s) or through the revitalization of a tired old metal structure. The revival of a metal piece is my focus for today.

Recently I had the pleasure of acquiring this splendid, sadly in need of attention, metal cart. I came across it at the home of a family member. They were in the process of packing the last of their belongings from their home that had recently been sold.

Leftover was a stash of old wooden doors that had been stored in the rafters of the garage (more about them later). Being very aware of my love for old things and my desire to give them new life they had offered me the opportunity to take possession of the doors. I had agreed to give them a new home, sight unseen. This was the last day the family would be at the home so it was now or never.

As we parked our truck, with its eight foot box, and got out to walk the extended gravel driveway I spied this adorable, what I would call tea cart, on my left, in my peripheral vision. Once the cart caught my eye I knew I had to inquire about its fate.

Not many people would be drawn to a rusty old piece such as this one but I could see huge potential. Visions of a wire brush, rust inhibitor and aqua spray paint surfaced in my mind. Oh the possibilities. Somehow I just knew that cart was pleading with me to take it home.

I wasn’t shy at all to ask about the cart. After all, a question unasked can never be answered. No sense waiting for an invitation. The answer was not what I wanted to hear. The cart was already spoken for. Oh, how sad! Well at least I had the opportunity to dream and it wasn’t destined for the trash.

A day or two later I received a text message from the family. The cute little cart, that I had so lovingly taken a liking to, was the subject of the message. On the screen of my smart phone was the question I thought I would never see. The family wanted to know if I was still interested in owning the cart. GASP! Need they ask!!! Of course I was interested. :o)

Days later I traveled to their home, with the trunk of my car empty, to retrieve my new possession. After carefully removing the glass top the cart was slid inside the trunk. The wavy patterned glass was placed inside my vehicle to provide a softer ride home.

I am very happy to report that both the metal frame as well as the slightly used, wavy glass top made it safely to its destination. As you could see from the photo below, my new cart is currently residing precariously in my front landscaping.

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Time now to get to work. Today I made a trip to a big box store to acquire supplies for my new friend. All of the items mentioned above were added to my shopping cart. Unfortunately I will need to postpone the initiation of the project for a while. The weather has been particularly hot and humid, thus inhospitable to painting of any nature.

For now I can only dream of my tea cart’s transformation. Stay close by for updates on my project.

Thanks for visiting! I look forward to sharing time with you again.

Cindy Anderson of In A Stitch Quilting

Friday Favorites: Sunshine in My Garden!

IMG_7639_ffWelcome to Friday Favorites!  I look forward to this time each week when I have the opportunity to share some of the things that make my world special.  We don’t have far to travel to experience one of my favorites today.  In fact, all we have to do is walk outside my back door and take a stroll past some of my favorite plants and flowers.  Do you have time to take a walk with me?  If you do then grab your sunglasses and a little bit of sunscreen.  No need for shoes, bare feet are just fine.  Are you ready, then follow me . . .

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Thanks for spending time with me!  I look forward to seeing you next Friday.  Have a great weekend.

Sunflowers For Me!

IMG_0355031 (2)Sunflowers have always been my favorite flower. I find their large, cheerful, yellow petals totally irresistible. Passing by a bouquet or a field filled with sunflowers is cause to make my head turn.

While visiting a local farmer’s market one day I walked past a farm stand with bouquets of plate sized flowers. I was so tempted to buy my very own fist full of yellow sunshine. If you have ever held such a bouquet then you know how heavy and sticky if can be. Rather than negotiate their transportation right then I decided to postpone the purchase until later.

IMG_9025_newBefore heading for home I returned to that booth and made my purchase. After carefully transporting the flowers home I released the flowers from the binding that held them together and examined each flower.

By the time we had reached home the petals on my five gorgeous specimens had begun to droop, ever so slightly. To quench their need for refreshment I made a fresh-cut on each stem, then submerged their thirsty feet into water. In no time the vibrant petals were once again perky and ready for enjoyment.

IMG_0370For days on end my home was brightened by the presence of my little piece of sunshine. I felt so lucky to have had the opportunity to have my very own bouquet of bright and shiny sunflowers.

As you can see from my photos I’ve managed to incorporate sunflowers in more than one of my quilts. The top right wall hanging was constructed from a pattern designed by Country Lore Designs. If you follow the included link you will see that it is still available as Item # 36. This is one of my favorite mini quilts. It totally reflects my craving for sunflowers.

The photo in the bottom right corner is of a project I worked on with my mother many years ago. Each of us made our own version. The original intention for the mini quilt was a set of placemats. I fell so in love with the finished product that I decided to stop with just one and use it as a wall hanging rather than hide it under a plate. Unfortunately the author of the pattern and where it was purchased is long since forgotten.

I hope by sharing my love for sunflowers it has helped to brighten your day. I know they add joy to mine.

Who knows when I will stumble upon my next sunflower experience!

Cindy Anderson

 

A View From My Window

There’s nothing like a quiet moment nestled in nature. The aromas, the melodies of the air and the fragrance of the earth are what set my mind at rest and my muscles to relax. I have a small piece of nature in my very own yard. This small piece is home to a variety of flowers, bushes, trees and a few carefully chosen pieces of art. I would like nothing more than to share a piece of my world with you. Here’s a view from my window.

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What’s Blooming, A Breath of Fresh Air

IMG_8891We’ve all worked and played very hard this week so let’s take a few moments to take a deep breath, let out a big sigh and pause for refreshment. Here’s to you and all that you have accomplished!IMG_8900IMG_8907IMG_8911

 

 

What’s Blooming, May 1, 2015

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Spring, one of my favorite seasons, brings with it the anticipation of abundant sunshine and balmy temperatures. Anyone living in Wisconsin knows that Spring is unpredictable; the thermometer is far from steady, temperatures swing wildly from frigid cold to pleasantly warm, and the much craved sunshine often lies hidden behind layers of clouds.

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But in amongst the disappointing, unpredictable weather comes the beauty and wonder of the slowly emerging tiny plants. Peeking from the buds on every single branch are hundreds of tiny leaves. These small glimpses of new life remind us of the beauty yet to come.

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On one recent balmy day I snatched my camera, slipped on a pair of flip-flops and headed outside to capture a piece of Spring. As I circled my environment I documented as many signs of Spring as I could uncover. Shown here is what I captured from behind my camera’s lens.

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Finally!

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Long, long time ago I told you about the saga of selling my home. Things were moving so slowly and it looked like everything would fall through. Well, surprise, surprise! My house sold, just in the nick of time I might add, and I am now enjoying a new adventure. We downsized to a home half the size of our former one with a yard to match. It took two and one half hours to mow the grass and countless hours maintaining the gardens. I can only imagine how long it will take to mow our small piece of earth. In fact…at this point all we have is clumps of soil. The only thing growing in my yard are a few brave weeds.

Since moving-in 5 weeks ago I have managed to paint all but one room. The pile of unopened boxes has dwindled to only a few. Gone are the table cloths and such that covered our windows. In their place are shiny new shades. The makeshift wood sidewalk has been replaced with concrete. The rocky driveway is now finished as well. Left on the To-Do-List is the leveling of our soil and the planting of grass seed. Once that task is finished we will find ourselves mastering the art of growing grass.

This is the first day I have had to sit, relax and enjoy my new location. As I recline on my back patio, amidst the soil and rocks I’m daydreaming of what is to come. I’m imagining how different my environment will look by the time snow flakes fall. How many trees and what varieties will be planted. Where will the flower beds go?

For now I’m content with things as they are.

Cindy Anderson
Cindy Anderson

A New Adventure

Quite some time has elapsed since we last visited.  Much activity has taken place during that absence.  The decision on which story to share first took a bit of contemplation.  After much thought I have decided to share with you the following update.

Late last summer my husband and I made the decision to put our home up for sale. Many, many hours and much thought went into that decision. At the forefront was the desire to be debt free. In a few short years my husband will be retiring. Granted we have seven or eight years until such an occasion would take place but plans for that life changing event must begin in advance.

Selling our present home and downsizing to a much smaller structure was our first hurdle. We enlisted the help of a familiar realtor. After her initial visit she left a list of things to do to make our home more inviting to prospective buyers. Hurriedly we tackled and checked off each of those items. In very short order we were ready for her return visit. As is typically the case, we signed a number of documents then watched as she moved throughout the house snapping photos. The photos as well as pertinent details of our home were registered on the internet.

In no time we were preparing for the first, second, third, fourth, and so on, showings of our home. With each viewing came the list of items with which the individuals were dissatisfied. Not wanting to deter anyone from falling in love with our home we set about the task of removing those obstacles.

One by one we removed each of our raised bed gardens. Along with them went our raspberries, the succulent strawberries, of which our grand children took great pleasure in sampling, the Michigan blueberry bushes my husband acquired from a kind neighbor and the beautiful lillys I transplanted from my oldest daughter’s garden.

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Also among the casualties was my herb garden. Flourishing in the organic soil were basil, chamomile and my absolute favorite, lavender.

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Last but not least was the wild flower garden I had initiated to fill in the open soil left by our previously removed compost bins.

We replaced the once hotbed of activity with boring patches of grass seed. Faithfully we watered and tended to those areas making certain they flourished. Before long the seeds of grass bloomed and spread until all that was left of our own little garden was our memories. Thankfully what appeared as scars, in my mind, are now covered with snow. One could not detect a hint of their existence beneath the blanket of white.

Aside from the changes made outdoors we have done some redecorating inside as well. To date we have updated our fireplace, added a few walls in the basement and purchased numerous items to instill a more modern appearance.

Price changes have also been made. It’s funny how the value one places on their own home does not necessarily reflect that of prospective buyers. Three times we have reduced our price. The last one occurred recently. This reduction is the one that hurt the most. The distance between our heart and reality is great.

Unfortunately all of these attempts have yet to produce a signed contract. For us what has resulted is a sense of sadness. Gone are the nuances that made this our home. Left are the daily reminders of what once was our property. Inch by inch we find ourselves distancing our hearts from the home that once was our haven.

And so, we wait for the family that will love this home as much as we have and for the opportunity to move on. We are sad because they will not have the occasion to sample the abundant delights that tantalized our senses. We realize, however, that they will find their own way to love and grow in this home. Until then we cautiously make plans for our next home.

What’s Blooming, July 30, 2013

My gardens are forever in transition.  Almost every day a new bud explodes with magnificent color.  My attempt to keep you abreast of this activity has wavered. Although the parade of blossoms has not been evidenced through my recent postings, my camera’s shutter has been busily capturing as much activity as possible. To bring you up to date I have gathered together a library of photos.  These images are but a sampling of all that has taken place.  Please enjoy!

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