Sunday, August 31, 2008

Show & Tell: Steal of the week ~ my Limoges Lyric Dishes!

Oh, how cool is this??? I went with hubby yesterday to look at a used car he wanted to purchase, and while we were talking the lady said she had some porcelain dishes in the back that she needed to get out, she was going to put them in a yard sale. Let me tell you, I know NOTHING of China, and just thought they were so pretty I asked her how much. $10 for ALL of THIS!!

It included 4 teacups (actually 6, but 2 were broken), a serving platter, 6 dinner plates, a serving bowl, a sugar bowl & lid, 3 berry/fruit bowls, 6 saucers, 3 salad plates, and 3 cereal bowls. The only thing stamped on the bottom was "Vita Ware China 22K" so I was trying to find out more. I did a search on ebay for "22K China" and discovered that they are Limoges-American "Lyric" pattern. So over to I went to see what else is offered, and at their prices I would have paid $325 for all of this.

They're so pretty, with their blue, pink, yellow, and gold, that I'm excited to get it all cleaned up and put it on display in the dining room. And on Friday, 2 days before finding these, I found the beautiful blue rose fabric & the coordinating paisley shown with the dishes. I'd love ideas on what to do with these fabrics in the dining room besides placemats or table runner, which are obvious choices.
Today I'm working on more of my Goji Shot glasses. With Convention only 2 weeks away, Linda is attending and passing out flyers for me (should be about 3000+ people there who are all Goji addicts like us!), so I'm trying to build up my inventory on those. I've also got a couple of adorable PINK projects to finish up in the next day or two, can't wait to share them with you all.
Have a Blessed Day!

Friday, August 29, 2008

It's So Darn QUIET Here!

I miss my kids. They are amazing children, very rarely any trouble for me (although the youngest & oldest do fight often), and since they went back to school on Tuesday, it's been so quiet here that I almost feel lost. This is my trio on the first day of school.

The fact that it's been so dark, rainy, and quite cool hasn't helped my mood, but I've been busy creating new PINK things that I love. They're drying right now, I shot the first coat of lacquer this morning, but I'm excited to share them next week on Show & Tell Monday. I'm slowly settling back into a working routine, and now that I'm blogging here I need to work that into my morning schedule. Hope you all have a fantastic weekend.

Friday, August 22, 2008

All Blinged Out

While I'm not a Boutique Member at Make Mine Pink, I love Pink Friday, and challenged myself to come up with something for Pink Friday this week.

This is a beautiful candle holder, shaped like a brandy snifter. It stands 8" tall and has my "Marcia" line silver & white flowers painted all over it, with little green foliage on each flower. The center of each flower is a Swarovski crystal. It glimmers & shimmers, and I set a dark green votive candle in it for display. It's available by clicking here, and is a one-of-a-kind item, so it's first-come. Other pieces in my Marcia line also have the same flowers, but anything that would need washed after use doesn't use the Swarovskis. Grab it while you can, and as always I offer $10 flat rate shipping in the USA no matter how much you order.


Thursday, August 21, 2008

New Lacquered Boxes on my website

I've finally gotten around to taking photos of some of the lacquered boxes I've finished, and gotten them up on my website. Some I did last year and I've put them at 50% off just to get them moved quickly.

This is a jewelry box, I LOVE it because I used a pearl lacquer. I can't seem to capture the pearl in the photo, but the pink & white just have this gorgeous shimmer about them.

This little blue jewelry box is cute, it's so petite that I didn't want to overwhelm it, so I added just a few daisies to the top.

The above round shaker box is so pink & romantic, a perfect little accent or storage piece for those of us with a pink fetish.

This jewelry box is fire engine red and is so much prettier in person. I wish I was a better photographer.

And a favorite of my mother's, the Victorian pink roses on the sage green background of this little oval shaker box really pop. Has such a vintage feel to it, I really love it. This is what inspired my "Elizabeth" line of glassware.

See all of these and more on my website, CJO Glassware & Gifts.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Welcome to Casa de Crystal!

I thought it would be fun today to post photos of my home. It's not what you would expect from someone who loves pink & shabby chic roses, that's for certain.

This is my living room, with my beautiful RED furniture. My coffee table is 40" square, and my husband built it for me years ago from an old chicken coop. It weighs about 100 lbs. and is perfect. On the wall is a beautiful fireplace screen; I wanted something ornate, iron, and fan-shaped, but when I was decorating this room I couldn't find anything. Then one of my friends had this fireplace screen she wanted to get rid of but didn't want to donate it to the church yard sale, so she gave it to me in trade for hubby's old weight bench that I wanted to get out of the garage. The candelier on the table is Southern Living at Home, I was a consultant for about 3 years.

This is the dining room from the living room. The outside door leads to the screened porch, where my oldest was sitting when I snapped this pic. I absolutely hate the chandelier, it's what the builder put in, and since the house was under contract at that point, he did everything as cheaply as possible in the end. My furniture is definitely my favorite ~ the curly cherry trestle table & stepback were built by Charles Neil and are very special to me. It's currently cleaned up today, but usually this is my "studio". The entire bottom of the stepback is full of paints & supplies, the top is full of things that need painted and a select few things I've painted for myself.

This is the baking center in my kitchen, another Charles Neil piece. I've been slowly replacing all of my red/yellow/green accessories with pink & sage, and recently painted the walls butter yellow. Below is a closeup of some of my painted pieces I did for myself, as well as some more Southern Living things that we use all of the time.

My bedroom has laundry piled in it, so no sharing that today. Another day, perhaps. And since this is Post #2 for today, I'll stop there. Have a great evening!

Back-to-School Shopping

Oh my!! Today I took the kidlings to Walmart to do their supply shopping. After fighting massive crowds (JMU is coming back into session, so the store was packed with freshmen & their parents), and working the 3 different lists, we managed to survive. $187!!! Okay, so I did grab some cereal, milk, 2 pair of shorts for Chandler who has outgrown everything, and a package of chicken to make for dinner tonight, but all of that only added up to about $40. How is it so darn expensive???

We're not even buying "school clothes" other than sneakers for the kids until the weather starts to show signs of being cooler. Chandler has outgrown everything, but the girls' clothes still fit them from last year.

I know other parents feel my pain here. We did haircuts last week and physicals the week before, Monday will take us to the dentist AND orthodontist, and Tuesday they go back. The money tree has definitely been plucked bare this month.

Okay ~ we're off to the new elementary school Orientation this evening, with Kenny & Devin arriving tonight, and tomorrow evening is Middle School Orientation for Niki and Open House for Emily. As chaotic as it is, I'm looking forward to the kids going back to school, allowing me to work more and break up fewer fights.

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, August 18, 2008

R.I.P. Dear Angela & Jessica

I've mentioned before my sister's death, on November 17, 2007. She was 24 years old and had a 4 yr old and an 8 month old, both girls. On Nov 17 at around midnight, her husband was picked up for posession of cocaine. At 7:30 AM she went to bail him out of jail. No one knows exactly what happened the next half hour, but at 8:10 AM, calls came in to 911 that there had been a car accident. Her husband was driving an estimated 86-93 mph down a busy street in the St. Petersburg, FL area, ran a red light, hit a pickup truck that was turning, skidded along about 100 yards, and hit a building. Angela was killed instantly. He walked away with a bruised rib. This has been a very hard year for my family. My brother was able to come home from Iraq for the Memorial Service (her husband would not allow my dad & stepmom to make any final arrangements for her, nor let her body be released), and my youngest sister April was at Army Basic Training and was told a few days after the wreck and managed to go to Florida at that time with Kenny. Custody of the girls has been given to their paternal uncle, who is a good guy but is a 30-yr-old bachelor. Florida court system at work. Needless to say, it's been tough. We're all working through it the best we can. Below is a photo of Angela with Kaitlyn.

So Friday, I get a call that my stepmom's mother has passed away. It was expected and she was in pain, so it was a blessing for her, although still hard to say good-bye. My stepmom (who has been married to my dad for 31 years, so she is someone I adore) has now lost her mother & daughter within 9 months. April has lost her sister & grandma. They have all gone to Indiana to the funeral.

Yesterday, stepmom (Julie) calls to tell me that April's best friend was killed in a horrific accident near Tampa. Jessica had just gone up to NC a few weeks ago to paint the nursery for April, and was throwing her baby shower in October. April's in Indiana on Leave, and I doubt the Army is going to give her leave to go to Florida. How much more can one young lady & family endure in a year? Nine months to the day of Angela's death, April now has to say good-bye to the person closest to her. Jessica forced April to buy the adorable green dress, and only a week ago April was here telling us about her buddy. The photo above shows Jessica on the left and April on the right, another friend in the center.

My heart breaks for April & for Jess's family. To keep losing people at such a young age is so difficult, and I'll keep Jess's mom in my prayers.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Happy Monday ~ It's Show & Tell!

What a wonderful weekend we had here! April's visit went so nicely, I hated for her to leave yesterday. We didn't do a whole lot, other than grill out and took her into town to get a pedicure (we all know how hard it is to do our own toes at 7 months pregnant!). I got some cute pics of her and her belly. Aiden Joseph James is due in October, and I didn't realize she was going to be alone for delivery more than likely, so we made plans that I will go down in September to learn my way around the base so when she goes into labor, I can drive down to be with her. I can't imagine going through labor without someone I love to hold my hand, and am thrilled she wants me there to see my nephew born. How adorable is she here?

On Thursday, I finished designing my "Karen" line and chose to do the first pieces as one-of-a-kinds. I found this pitcher set at a local antique shop, and while it's a bit vintage it's not antique. The amber pitcher & glasses are a perfect backdrop for the yellow & white daisies. Usually, I set up a photography studio to get glassware photos, but today I opted to shoot these on the screened porch. The colors go so nicely with my furniture out here, it's tempting to keep this set for myself!

This week will be busy, I hope I can find some small moments to get work done. Niki has band practice today, then wants to go visit a friend who's in town from Florida. Tomorrow is her eye appointment to get contacts, then Friday we are going to visit our Lady Friends that we volunteer with before running our usual errands in town and getting all 3 kids haircuts (and myself too ~ I desperately need a trim right now!). Hopefully I'll be able to knock some more things off my to-do list, it seems for each thing I cross off I add 2 more.

Have a Blessed Day!


Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Kenny's Home from Iraq, April's Coming to Visit

What a relief! My younger brother Kenny is home from Iraq, he landed in Savannah on Sunday. As a CH-47 pilot for the Army, this is his 2nd tour to Iraq, and he's also done one in Afghanistan and 2 in Korea over the past 13 years. We're all so proud of him and his accomplishments, but yet he breaks our hearts on ocassion. My mom was really hoping he would be able to come for at least a short visit when he returned, but he doesn't have enough Leave time available at this point if he wants to come for Christmas, which I know is important to her also. Although I saw him in November when he came home for our younger sister Angela's funeral in Florida, Momma hasn't seen him since June 2007. With her heart attack in May, and Angie's death in November, I know mortality weighs strongly on our minds around here and you always want to make sure that you took every opportunity to spend time with people you love. Especially those that go out into battle . So maybe he'll call soon, I couldn't reach him and left him a voicemail, but hearing his voice on the recording felt nice.

On a happier note, my baby sister April is coming up from Ft. Bragg to visit me for a 3-day weekend this week. She's pregnant and due in October, so her mom (my stepmom, technically she's my half-sister) told me to be sure to get a good belly picture. I'm excited, as she and I are really working to build a relationship. We are almost 13 years apart in age, so we haven't always had alot in common, but as she's gotten older and is now becoming a mom, we're finding more common ground. And we both want to be a big support to our parents, and make them proud of us, which also brings us closer together.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Fun Day at Lake Monticello

Yesterday, we went with hubby's parents to Lake Monticello and went out on the lake for the day. The kids had an incredible time, as did we. They rode a large raft tied to the back of the boat, similar to water skiing, and Grandma Karen worked hard to find the wake of other boats to really let them take a good bounce. The only person who fell off the entire day was me, which was funny. It couldn't have been a prettier day, with a sunny sky and upper 80 temps. The kids woke up this morning with very sore arms, but after such a fun day I don't think they mind very much. The water was SO warm, it was wonderful to jump right in from the boat. Another fun memory from this summer for the whole family, and it was good to spend a day with the in-laws.

Friday, August 1, 2008


Grrr!! I love summer, but with it comes BUGS. Even being out on a screened porch, they manage to find me. I have one of those body chemistries that just screams "bite me", I guess, as they will find me wherever I hide. And if I happen to be outside, I'm doomed. Gnats everywhere, mosquito bites miraculously appearing out of thin air... my Caladryl is my best friend in summer.

For 2 weeks I have anxiously been awaiting the full bloom of 5 big pink roses on one stalk, that I could cut them and put them in the house. Yesterday, I noticed that 4 were opened and ready to come in, and when I went out to cut them off, they were full of Japanese Beetles. Yuck!! And I mean burrowed down in the petals. There were 4 in just one rose. And the roses themselves were eaten full of holes. Heartbreak. Obviously my "Sevin" bug spray wasn't working, it's time to go a little more toxic, I think.

So as I sit here on the screened porch typing and looking at my roses, and all of the spiderwebs the sun is highlighting in the corner of the porch, and noticing a new bite on my arm that itches, I wish once again that the bugs would let me enjoy the summer and being outside. For now, I'll remain in my little cage here off the back of the house.