Thursday, April 27, 2017

Inspired by a Beautiful Planner

Hello, sweet friends, I hope you are enjoying 
your week!
I've been very busy lately - babysitting
for my little 6 mos. old grandson two days a week,
(and sometimes on the weekend for either of my grandsons),
trying to get the gardens tended in between the rain showers,
and also doing a bit of spring cleaning and organizing
in between.

Clearly, I need a plan, and like magic,
help has arrived!  

I recently won a beautiful planner 
in a generous give-away from Gina,
who writes one of my favorite blogs,
 With Twigs and Branches!

I was so excited!

The planner came with all these delightful goodies
and a lovely hand-made card from sweet Gina.

There was washi-tape, stickers, lots of printed cards,
stamps, to-do lists, a separate blank journal
and a decal for the front of the planner.

I was immediately inspired!

The planner was divided by month with
blank monthly, weekly and daily organizing pages.

There were pockets on the inside for stashing
notes, and bits of decorative 'scrap',
and slots for notepads and the little journal.

The name of the company that produces this line
is called, 'Carpe Diem' - Seize the Day!
I did a search and found some wonderful inspiration
using this product line, which I posted on my Pinterest
board under 'Planner and Scrapbook Ideas'.
You can find the link on my side-bar.

I've never tried scrapbooking,
but now I am smitten!

The first thing I did was apply the decal to the planner.

Of course I needed a place to keep my new planner,
so I converted my enamel-top farm table
into my planning desk.

My vintage photo holder keeps the pretty card 'scraps' handy.

Aren't they so cute?

I cleaned out the little drawer, lined it with
pretty paper and stashed my new supplies,
along with some things I had on hand.

Then I filled up the pockets and slots in the
binder with all my new pretties.

The blank journal slides under the pocket flap.
The pockets are fun places to hold cute graphics.

Love the 'messy hair...don't care' quote :)

A 'To Do' notepad with binder holes
comes in handy!

It fits perfectly in the top slot.
I had the little flowers on hand
that I saved from some gift wrapping.

Do you save pretty little things, just 'because'?

Sheets of little stickers fit nicely in the flap.
These are used to decorate the calendar pages.

Gina also included a pretty tote!
Weenie Baby approves!

It's the perfect size for sheets of scrapbook paper
ready for snipping.

I had so much fun setting up my little space.

I even made a cushion for my vintage folding chair!

A gal's gotta have a comfy seat when she is
setting down to plan her life!

I simply used a linen dish towel, folded and cut to size,
and sewn on two sides.
I inserted 3 layers of quilt batting......

I then sewed the open side shut and used a button to anchor
the batting on both sides.

I had the dishtowel left over from
 making my banner a few years ago.
The fabric is heavy and substantial, without being bulky.

Kai loves to look through the glass.
(I've pulled the curtain over his pet door
and he waits to come inside :)

Now I have a sweet little space to organize my life!

Whitey Bear rests on his dog bed.

My three little companions always keep me company :)

 When I did my grocery shopping this week,
I stopped at my local craft store (Ben Franklin),
to see if they carried the Carpe Diem line and guess what -
they did! I found these adorable page clips and flags.

I had these blank tags on hand,
and wanted to 'dress them up',
so I brushed on some watercolors......

I then stamped them with my new stamp from Gina.


Want to see my first decorated pages?

I started with the calendar for May.
I had so much fun......
I put all the page clips on the last page of the planner
to keep them handy.

I can't wait to start my daily and weekly pages!
I will be sure to share them with you regularly.
Do any of you keep a planner or a scrapbook?
Thank-you, Gina for your wonderful give-away!
I'm having lots of fun with it!

Be sure to visit Gina's sweet blog,
With Twigs and Branches, dear friends.
I know you will love her.


Friday, April 21, 2017

Another Spring Walk-About

Hello, dear Friends, we have had very unsettled 
weather, here in the foothills of Washington State. 
One minute it is sunny, and the next it is raining. 
A moment after this photo was taken, the foothills
were completely obscured. 

And down came the rain. 

We have had so many rainy days that 
I have been getting a bad case of cabin fever. 

Washingtonians describe it as getting 'raingry'. Lol! 

I have managed to get outside to feed the birds
and take a little walk each day despite the rain, 
so come along with me (and my 3 loyal companions)
and we will enjoy a little stroll in between showers. 

They do say that April showers bring May flowers!.....

The dogs are always so excited when I open the gate. 

Kai will even drop his toy, which he carries everywhere :)
Once they are outside the gate, they run as fast
as they can up to the bird feeder to see what
they can scare up!

Today it was a whole flock of wild Band-Tailed pigeons! 

They wait patiently. 

These big guys (the size of a small chicken)
 are eating me out of house and home. 
Last night Ramblin' Man made me laugh...
after carrying in another heavy, 40 lb bag of bird seed, 
he said, "Wow, that just made my socks fall down!"
But when you are outside and you hear them
contentedly cooing, there is no sweeter sound.

The sweet, gentle mourning doves wait nearby.

You can see the difference in size and coloring between the two.

The pigeon is easily 3 times the size of the dove. 

View from the feeder. 

We keep it well away from the house due to wild critters. 
You know, like bears......:)

The feeder is metal and the suet cages have clips on them
to keep raccoons from hauling off the goods! 
Every night they try to pry them open :)

Looking around, I see the wild bleeding heart is blooming. 

Every year they form large colonies here and there. 

One of my favorite woodland flowers are pink current.
This is a small, sprawling shrub.

Aren't they pretty? The hummingbirds love these.
Small, greenish currents form from the flowers.
There are never enough to make jam,
as the birds get to them first.

The Oregon grape is just starting to bloom, too.

The panicles of sweetly fragrant yellow bells
will produce small, edible purple 'grapes'.

This was an important food to our native peoples.

I love them for their drooping, fern-like evergreen foliage.
They form large colonies under evergreen trees
and are used in native plant landscaping.

Another of my favorite flowers is Salmon Berry.

These lovely, star-shaped blossoms grow on
tall, vase-shaped, thornless shrubs.
The berries are a beautiful salmon color,
hence the name. They are a favorite of birds,
especially Robins.

I've watched Robins hover like a hummingbird to
pluck the berries off slender twigs!

Wild deciduous ground-covers have also suddenly sprung
up from the forest floor around our evergreen sword ferns.

This pretty, lobed ground-cover is called Fendler's Waterleaf.
Growing alongside are the wider leaves of Fringecup.

This delicate, lime-colored ground-cover has
the mysterious name of 'Enchanter's Nightshade'.
It certainly is enchanting, especially when the
tiny, white flowers bloom.

Growing alongside are young Holly seedlings.

Big-Leaf Maple has large (4-6 inch) flower panicles.

These are a favorite food for our native Douglas Squirrel.
These are small squirrels, slightly larger than a chipmunk.

It's starting to rain again!
Droplets bead up on the leaves of Oso Berry-
 otherwise known as 'Indian Plum'.
Can you see the white flowers hanging down?
These will form miniature plums
that are a favorite of the birds.

These are small trees, generally 10-15 ft. tall
and are the first to bloom in the forest,
providing returning Rufous Hummingbirds with nectar.
Our larger Anna's Hummingbirds stay year-round.

Whitey Bear checks out a small, fallen tree
just outside the gate.
Ramblin' Man will have to deal with that
when he comes home :(
Can you see my plastic-wrapped newspaper leaning by the post?
Every afternoon the dogs and I walk up the long drive to retrieve it.

The daily newspaper is one of the small luxuries
we can't live without. No fake news :)

We pass the newly leafed-out Red Huckleberry growing
in its favorite conditions - the highly acidic soil around
a rotting stump!

The evergreen Sword Fern is unfurling new fronds
after our winter of heavy snowfall flattened its form.
Fringecup grows alongside.
These have long wands of cup-shaped blossoms
 with a little 'fringe' when they bloom.

Weenie Baby investigates a mossy stump.
This stump was here when we arrived 36 years ago,
(in our 20's) and is just now succumbing to the earth.

Nature is sometimes swift and brutal,
but most often slow and gentle.

One of Ramblin' Man's 'sculptures'.
I find little surprises from him when I venture out :)

Ramblin' Man mowed the lawn for the first time last weekend.
My gnarly old dwarf apple tree in the foreground is just starting to leaf out.

A little colony of foxglove has sprung up at the edge of the lawn.

I was surprised by these white daffodils this year.
I had planted a large bag of bulbs a few years ago
and had a great display the first couple of years, but nothing
last year. Then these little beauties presented themselves!

The hellebore keeps surprising me with its
changing hues. The flowers last for many weeks
and like shade with just a little bit of sun.

It's time to head back inside. The sprinkles
are turning into a rain shower.

You can see my red Camellia has put on a lovely show
next to the gate this year. This is another shade lover.

Just as lovely as a rose!
Without the thorns!
Sadly, they have no scent.

This little sweetie (Song Sparrow) has been staking out territory by
the dog kennel next to the walkway.
 (You can tell how often we use that!)
I see it everyday, scratching around the ground and
sitting on the wire.
Its song is lovely.

Come inside and take off your raincoat.

Can you see the pigeon in the tree?

Let's look a little closer.......

One lovely benefit of all the rain are rainbows
at the end of the day.

Can you see the hummingbird?

Thank you for coming along with me, dear Friends.

And thank you for your wonderful visits and kind comments.
I always love to hear from you and learn a little more about you
each time you stop by.
Getting to know you is like a beautiful painting.....
one little paint-stroke at a time.


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