Monday, August 31, 2009

August Update

Where did August go? They say the older you get, the faster time goes by. I believe it! So here is an update and overview that I do at the end of each month. It is something that can keep one on track. I recommend that you have a top ten on what you value and hope to accomplish. Here's mine with a few announcements in the mix...

1. Gardening - Well, I'm sorry to say that my pretty pumpkin patch has become sick with a bad case of powdery mildew. What does that do? It takes perfectly healthy plants and practically destroys them overnight. Sigh. This is my first attempt with pumpkins and I had such high hopes. I believe a few pumpkins will survive, but the plants are quickly dying. There is nothing I can do at this point except to research and plan for next year. Gardening is always a learning experience.

2. Turning Trash into Treasures - By attending auctions and flea markets this season, my inventory to pull from is continuously growing. This allows for my creativity to flow so much better and my ability to take a piece to transform it into a work a art so much easier. I've also been waiting for the fall season to give me the time it takes for these types of projects.

3. Saving Energy & Becoming Earth Friendly - This is another continuous learning experience and so worth the effort to everything we apply. Doing so easily flows with the rest of my values.

4. Experimenting in the Kitchen - Cooking straight from the garden this summer has been so satisfying. I go out and pick what is ready, mix and match it with what is in the cupboards, and have a fantabulous meal to put on the table. It has been fun, but the garden will soon come to an end. So with the cooling weather and upcoming holidays, I'm looking forward to baking and making friends with the oven again.

5. Making Our House a Home & a Haven - Some of you know that I'm in the planning stage of redoing our home on a budget. And I mean a budget! What is the step that I want to tackle first? I want to knock down a wall and need to get Tool Man on board with the idea. I'm not about to paint walls, stain cupboards, or redecorate until that dirty job is out of the way. I told Tool Man that I could knock down the wall myself. I got the 'look'. You know the one that says...don't you dare (smile). I did get him to agree for us to do it the month of September.

6. Connecting & Playing with Nature - Since being accepted as a Naturalist in Training at Bernheim Forest, I've taken advantage of learning experiences there, such as a night time hike, to expand my knowledge and understanding of the natural world.

7. Creating & Crafting - Announcement time! I so enjoy finding my creative self again that I soon plan to open an online shop this coming month. Whoo-hoo! I promise to keep you posted on the grand opening.

8. Becoming Self-Reliant - I have abandoned many store bought products and have discovered I'm better off without them. No is where to find my formula and vinegar rinse. I now have the best hair. This has even surprised me. I'm happy. My experiment with baking soda for toothpaste was not as successful. Baking soda is too abrasive and it bothers my gums. I'm using vinegar for a variety of uses...let's just say it has become my best friend. I use it for cleaning and I use it as a personal care product. I've put it in a spray bottle in the bathroom. I use it as an astringent and as a relief for skin irritations such as bug bites. It works!

9. Family Fun - I'm looking forward to hooking up with my long distance family this coming season. It's always a balancing act to see how, when, and where we will all connect.

10. Educating Myself and Others - If you've read this far, thank you! I love blogging and what others have to share on their blogs. It has been fun to connect with creative minds. With that being said, I will soon be making an exciting announcement. It has come about based on my own wants and needs. Then I thought, hey, this will be the perfect answer for so many of us. So stayed tuned for that big announcement to be revealed!

So there we are! September will be a month of exciting adventures for myself and hopefully for you, too!

See you in September,


Friday, August 28, 2009

Have a Warm & Wonderful Weekend

Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul. ~John Muir

A lake is the landscape's most beautiful and expressive feature. It is earth's eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature. ~Henry David Thoreau

I thank you God for this most amazing day, for the leaping greenly spirits of trees, and for the blue dream of sky and for everything which is natural, which is infinite, which is yes. ~e.e. cummings

The poetry of the earth is never dead. ~John Keats

Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better. ~Albert Einstein
I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order. ~John Burroughs


Thursday, August 27, 2009

Smile For The Camera

Do you remember the good old days when capturing a special moment to keep forever was one heck of an ordeal compared to today's standards? When a special day was approaching, you better remember to have the film, the flash, and the batteries ready. God forbid if you forgot, because everything would have to come to a halt even if Little Bobby was ready to blow out his birthday candles! A quick run to the store was in order!

Then, of course, there was loading the film and winding it to the number 'one' position for that first picture. After all the pictures were taken, you would forward the film inside the camera before removing it. The next trip to the store, if you remembered to take the film with you, involved going to the counter to fill out the envelope or have the clerk do it for you with all your pertinent information and preferences. Then you go home and wait.

Once your pictures have been developed, off to the store you go once more to pick them up. You pay for them and take them home to see the wonderful results of those special moments. Upon opening the envelope, you discover some of the pictures are bad or blank. Another trip to the store because you can get a little bit of money back on those bad pictures. And the good pictures? They're thrown into a drawer to put in an album someday that never actually comes! Yes...the good old days!

Today is the day to share thrifty and vintage finds with all my friends hosted by Suzanne at Colorado Lady and Leigh at Bloggeritaville. Thanks ladies for hosting these two events and giving us the opportunity to share!

I did not know I was going to share my cameras today until I pulled them out to clean them up. I will be putting them on a display wall with all our family photos which I thought would be fun. Don't ask me why I'm drawn to vintage cameras, I just am. It's a little weird, but I do remember my first Brownie camera as a kid. And I enjoy nature photography. 

Oh and the best part, all my vintage cameras cost $3.00. Pretty good deal!

Now smile for the camera,


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Geese and Friendship

We are so fortunate to live on a beautiful lake. Part of our day entails seeing a variety of critters in our backyard and beyond. The ones who seem to draw the most attention to themselves are the Canada geese. They always travel in a group flying in, out, and about. We become part of their daily lives by the sound of their multiple wings flapping, their honking in unison echoing across the lake, and their strutting across our yard to find any yummy tidbits within the grass.

Here is some  fascinating information and insight I found on 'geese and friendship'.

Fact-As each bird flaps its wings, it creates more uplift for the bird immediately following. By flying in a V formation, the whole flock can fly 71% further than if each bird flew on its own.

Truth-People who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier because they are traveling on the trust of one another.

Fact-Whenever a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of trying to go it alone and quickly gets back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird ahead.

Truth-There is strength, power, and safety in numbers when we travel in the same direction with people with whom we share a common goal.

Fact-When the head goose gets tired, he rotates back in the V and another goose takes his place.

Truth-It pays to take turns when doing difficult jobs.

Fact-The geese honk from behind to encourage those up front to keep up their speed.

Truth-We all need to be encouraged with active support and praise.

Fact-When a goose gets sick or is wounded and falls out of formation, two geese follow him down to help and protect him. They stay with him until the crisis resolves, then launch out on their own or join another formation.

Truth-We must stand by one another in times of need.

I know why I'm so drawn to nature and all the critters that surround me. The lessons they can teach are more valuable than what we can learn on our own in a lifetime. It inspires me to be more than I already am. So please take time today and always to reflect and appreciate the natural world around you.

In appreciation,

(Side note-I would love to give credit to the above info on the facts and truth, but this came from a sheet of paper I've held onto for years. No author was cited.) 


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

For the Love of Books

I have books on the brain this week! I've always had a collection of books of some sort for my own personal enjoyment. Hording books is a family trait and I just don't know any better. It is a learned behavior.

Now it is a happy coincidence that I've stumbled into selling books after attending a few auctions. I have mixed emotions while at an auction and no one bids on the books. Books have so much character and a lot to offer. Books, unless they have a high dollar resale value, are not as desirable these days to most people. The orphaned books that I adopt hold history, store personal comments within their pages, and sometimes even hold bits and pieces of information on previous owners who have tucked little mementos within the pages. All of that can be more valuable than a dollar amount.

Some old books can come with their own distinct smell and tattered state. If that tattered state is beyond repair, the book cannot be salvaged for its original purpose. So what to do? Do not throw it away. It can be recycled and 
repurposed. I have so many ideas floating around on all the possibilities. I plan to use some creativity in my cottage design by repurposing old books.

I found an interesting artist who uses books in his designs. Check him out at This Into That. It just may give you some ideas. One question...have you ever used books for a redesign or a crafting project?


Monday, August 24, 2009

Friend of Flea Markets

As some of you know, I’m a flea market friend. I love working flea markets at both ends. I not only enjoy finding great buys on good junk, I also am a flea market vendor. Setting aside the actual joy of selling and buying, I find the flea market culture absolutely fascinating! People come by to visit and share their love and stories of what merchandise I have available that day.

What is very popular and a good topic is my display of cookbooks and books in general from old to new. I’ve heard and shared many a story of recipes, what to cook and who will not cook, the love of their collections, and the comfort that a good book can bring.

And besides books, there are some of us who flea market to find that piece that speaks to us and we just have to take it home. I am in the process of working those special pieces into the design of my home and giving it the style that I can call my own.

So I have some good news to share. A new magazine will soon be released for all of us who have a passion for flea markets. Brought to you by the well known style makers Ki Nassauer and Matthew Mead, Flea Market Style will be full of decorating tips and projects. Look for its release in the spring of 2010. Geez, I don’t know if I can wait that long!


Friday, August 21, 2009

Is Crafting A Lost Art?

No, crafting is not a lost art! You just have to look in all the right places. I did not realize how many talented people are out there devoted to their craft until I turned to the internet.

Years ago, I was a crafter and somewhat good at it. As I turned more toward a career, my art was set aside. I lost a part of what really defines creativity. Now that I've left the professional world, I've become inspired again to create.

So this is where I turn to the internet to begin blogging about my experiences and I'm stumbling upon artists who take their craft seriously whether they are picking up knitting needles, a glue gun, a hammer, needle and get the idea. They all have a purpose.

I remember years ago, and I mean years ago, how you could take a bar of soap, carve a little fish out of it, put netting around it with a bow to make it pretty, and then set it in your bathroom. Isn't that a hoot?!?

Crafting has sure come a long way! No more playing. It is creating with a purpose and finding fulfillment in what you do. I enjoy makeovers. No, I'm not talking about fashion and face. I'm talking about makeovers in the form of repurposing items to give them a new life or look.

Let me introduce you to Cheri at Its So Very Cheri. She has recently started a 'Knock Off Knock Out' party on her blog. It's every Monday. Other creative bloggers join in and share their creative talents. If you say you aren't creative, then this is the place to get those wheels a turning! Check out all the talent! And tell Cheri that Cindy says hi!

Crafting With Purpose,


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Fifty Cent Special

I want a comfy, cozy cottage-style home. What do I have? A regular ranch that is ready for a makeover. Thrifty and vintage treasures will be the creative core of my new challenge for the cottage look and feel. What fun! I'm ready so let's go!

See the picture above? Not my kitchen, just great inspiration!
I want to add some vintage fun to my cottage kitchen and what better way to do so than pops of color in dishes and accessories. So today I thought I'd share my Thursday with a find from this past weekend's flea market.

Look at these aqua apple dishes from Belmar of California.
USA made!

Not too much info is available on this company,
but these dishes are from the 1950's - 1960's.
All five dishes for 50 cents!

A pop of fun color, a fantabulous price, and a great start for my cottage kitchen. This is a new journey for me so any advice or feedback is appreciated. Thanks for stopping by!

Please take the time to visit all my friends' thrifty and vintage finds hosted by ColoradoLady of Vintage Thingies Thursday and Liegh of Thrifty Thursday.


Snakes Alive

Kit Kat here! When walking down to the lake with my human, I never know what we may find. Yesterday afternoon my human came across this extraordinary looking snake. I did not even bother to get close. Sometimes you just know better. My human, though, decided she needed pictures and she was not even aware if this snake was dangerous or not. And humans say animals are stupid. Sigh...

Fortunately, it was only a water snake. We are safe and secure for another day...unless my human decides to wander off too far again. Is there such a thing as a leash for humans?


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Garden Stuff

The greatest gift of the garden is the restoration of the five senses. - Hanna Rion

My morning ritual of paying a visit to my garden always unveils something new and extraordinary. So I was not disappointed this morning to see my garden flourishing with activity.

The pumpkin patch which happens to be overflowing in masses from its designated space is a great place for exploration according to Kit Kat. I enjoy this area just as much as it is my first planting of pumpkins and I'm learning as I go. Honey bees shared the patch with us as they worked away on all the beautiful blossoms.

Not to be outdone by the pumpkin blossoms, the sunflowers were putting their best faces forward and were attracting a wide variety of bees.

I took the time to pick fresh produce while in the garden and before a possible rain shower today. Our zucchini plants are finished, our cherry tomatoes are coming to an end, the cucumber plants are slowing down, and the tomato and pepper plants are still going strong.

One of the easiest plants for me to grow with minimum care and that seems to have a long season is the banana pepper. I do freeze them after cleaning and slicing them. So easy! One thing I've started doing with them is to serve them fresh with cream cheese. I just cut off the top, slice them down the middle, clean out the seeds with a spoon, and fill with cream cheese. Tastes even better with a little salt!


Monday, August 17, 2009

Denim Days

"I have often said that I wish I had invented blue jeans: the most spectacular, the most practical, the most relaxed and nonchalant. They have expression, modesty, sex appeal, simplicity - all I hope for in my clothes."-Yves Saint Laurent

I'm a denim person. I have denim jackets, dresses, capris, shirts, vests, and jeans in a variety of colors. I truly love denim for its simplicity, its comfort, and its durability. I recently coupled a denim day with a denim vision. It started when I pulled out a variety of denim and matching materials from an auction box I won. Immediately my enthusiasm and my creativity kicked up a notch or two. I could, I mean can, give my home the character it so desperately wants and needs. I am sorry to say that the last complete redo on our home was ten years ago with that ever so popular hunter green.

So more on this vision of mine. I was also fortunate to snatch over 100 popular home magazines at an auction. It is perfect timing for an inspiration notebook for our home. I'm discovering I'm drawn to certain colors and materials that surprise me. I'm beginning to visualize what I want to do. I plan to transform my home from a regular ranch to a creative and cozy cottage.

Oh, and one more thing. This transformation of my home will be with all my auction and flea market finds. That is where I will find a true creative challenge. No tearing out cupboards. No replacing floors. No additions. I won't promise about taking down walls as I've done that before and it costs nothing but hard work. My objective is to make the biggest changes possible with little or no money. It's about simplicity and recycling while having fun with the process. This should prove interesting.

So please stay tuned for more denim days...



Friday, August 14, 2009

Grab It While You Can!

Summer that is...grab it while you can as it will be over before you know it. Soon we will be experiencing that familiar chill of a new season upon us. Autumn is my favorite season and I cannot help being excited about its arrival even though this is only August. You see, when you garden, the earth constantly presents gentle reminders of what is to be. Within my own garden, my zucchini plants have come to an end. I just finished cleaning out the bed while my pumpkin plants are stretching and spreading into this area.

I am ecstatic about my pumpkin plants. I've never planted pumpkins before, but I always have had this fantasy of owning a pumpkin farm. I have this image of a big, old barn with wide open fields of pumpkins of every size and color. The woods that surround our fields provide a canvas of brilliant, fall colors. The air we breathe is brisk, fresh, and clean. Our cats are hanging out around the barn hoping to catch a mouse. The dogs are enjoying the freedom of running through the fields and are happy to join us every time we step outside. Campfires are the norm and family joins us often just because it is fun to be on the farm.

So what is my reality? I am experiencing a garden filled with little green pumpkins soon to become larger and claim their individual colors. I am living on 1 1/3 acres situated on a beautiful lake with an abundance of wildlife. I am happy and proud to have a wonderful family. I am an owner of cats and dogs who happen to think I'm the best human they could ever have. Hmmm...I am missing a barn in this picture. Well I could always build a shed or a second garage in the style of a barn. And there we go. I do have it all!

My thoughts may be filled with fall, but my days are filled with summer. So get out there and enjoy the remaining days of this season and grab it while you can. The arrival of autumn will soon be here!



Thursday, August 13, 2009

I'm A Sharin'

I'm a naturally thrifty person. My preference for finding the best deals is, of course, auctions over any other avenue. But once in awhile I will venture out to 'shop' at a yard sale and/or a flea market. Today I want to share some of my finds that I just had to have, no matter the price. The picture above shows my beautiful and heavy candlesticks for $3 at a yard sale. They are perfect to hold candles or to showcase my vintage hats that I buy at auctions. Multipurpose! And I love my vintage hats. I display some of them, enjoy wearing those that fit me (size & personality), and will be selling the others!

The cute vintage looking crock was only 50 cents at a flea market. Perfect to hold kitchen utensils!
My next find was birdhouse bookends for $1 at a flea market. I went with my sister and told her I was not leaving the flea market without a birdhouse. I found this almost at the last table on the way out.

This candle holder was $3 which is more than I normally would pay, but it was calling me to take it home. I can use this indoors or out and I can even hang it up. I've been considering putting a bird nest in it with a bird. As you can tell, I have a fondness for birds.
This little lampshade was only 25 cents so I couldn't pass it up. I probably won't use it as is. I know I won't. It's in my craft area waiting for a future project or inspiration.
That's it for today. Thank you for stopping by! Make sure to check out other vintage and thrifty finds from all my friends hosted by Colorado Lady at Vintage Thingies Thursday and Leigh at Tales from Bloggeritaville.


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Human Nature

Good morning. Kit Kat here on a wonderful Wednesday. Today I want to share my observations of a very fascinating kreature...the human being. Yesterday morning I had the opportunity to witness the nature of how humans create their own stress. It is all about how they choose to react to circumstances beyond their control. Please allow me to further explain.

My human was blogging, and me being of a helpful nature, reached over and gave my contribution on her keyboard. The next chain of events was a bit of a blur. She started to scream as I looked towards the screen to see the words, 'Your blog has just been published'. Whoops, maybe I'm a little too helpful. Apparently, the best I can determine is that it was a very, and I mean very, rough draft and not ready for the blogging world to see. I felt she may have been overreacting just a tad. Does anyone really read her blog anyway?

I've come to the conclusion that no human being wants to show too much of their human side. They want to be perfect. At least my human always wanted to be when she was in the business world. She stated that the need for perfectionism would no longer be part of who she was when she left it. She came home to change her life. She was going to accept her imperfections and all. So what just happened here?

I have discovered that it takes a lot of effort for human beings to fully accept and embrace change even if it is for the better. How curious is that? And what I find more fascinating is that humans find it even harder to just accept who they are. They beat themselves up over 'what ifs' and 'I should ofs'.

All I can say is to stop the madness! Humans can learn so much from the feline world. Take the time to observe us just as I have done with you. My special words of wisdom for you are:

Cuddle up with someone you care about

Take a cat nap in the middle of the day

Enjoy a treat just because

Go out and play

Be still & enjoy your surroundings

Stretch and then stretch some more

Purr, I mean laugh & sing when your heart desires

Be free to be yourself, imperfections and all

And last, but not least...adopt a kitty

Kit Kat reporting here...have a Kit Kat stress free day!


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

I Have Roots

As you know, the name of this blog is Plant Some Roots. Many people think it is about gardening. That is only a small fraction of what I am trying to convey. Plant Some Roots means being grounded in what I do. Some say to sow seeds in life...I say to plant roots. Roots take hold faster and you will see better results. This blog and my ramblings are going back to my roots. It is about how my Grandmothers' lives have influenced my decisions today. It's about my heritage and my direction. I've made the choice to live a life of simplicity which follows my purpose and aligns with my values.

I found an article yesterday in an old magazine which caught my attention. It was about the month of May being the perfect time to celebrate home, inside and out. The writer's birthday is in the month of May as is mine. I don't follow astrology, the meaning of Zodiac signs, or my horoscope, but as I continued to read the article I became quite intrigued.

The article stated that Taureans are rooted, like May flowers, in the earth. So I decided to do some more research. I found that Taureans are rooted in life and are down-to-earth possessing a strong sense of values. We like to be rooted in our environment, work, home, and/or opinions.

So is this just a coincidence that this blog is all about my roots? All I can determine is that there may be no coincidences in life. We all have a purpose and we all have roots. Maybe we just need to be more in touch with who we are by determining our purpose so we can better fulfill it. So this blog and my choice of simplicity is my attempt to plant some roots and follow my purpose. What's yours?


Monday, August 10, 2009

The Longest Yard Sale or Auction?

A busy weekend. So much to do. I needed to make a decision. The Longest Yard Sale or an auction? I've done both before so an auction wins over The Longest Yard Sale. Does that surprise you? I'm sure it does if you are a true thrifter, but I did come out way ahead after comparing notes, finds, and prices with those who did attend the yard sale. I also had fun and visited with some interesting people. I spent $60 on 22 boxes of great stuff, some benches, and a small table. We are talking about $2.00 a box! Ya just can't beat that! Please enjoy my finds with me here. This is only a couple of my items...

Look at the colorful dishes and the plate holder.
I love the stone bird above and the birdhouses below. And of course, more dishes! Look at this pretty little bowl below that was tucked inside a box. It's very dainty.

And last, but not least. I found this buried at the bottom of a Christmas box. I did not even know it was there and apparently no one else did either. It's quite large and just gorgeous!

So I had a busy, yet wonderful weekend. If I ever do decide to do The Longest Yard Sale again some day, look me up. I just may be the one with the amazing booth with such cool prices and such hot deals, you won't be able to walk away empty handed.

Thrifty is Nifty,


Friday, August 7, 2009

A Day in Pictures

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