Tweak It Tuesday #162

October 12, 2015
Last week on Tweak It Tuesday...

 Look at this gorgeous piece of furniture The Painted Hinge redid.

LL Farm gathered a pretty fall bouquet of wildflowers.

 Ms. Toody Goo Shoes showed how to make yummy donuts.

The Starfish Studio displayed some hydrangeas in a pretty pitcher.

Honey & Birch made chocolate pavlova cake.

Debbie Dabble prettied up a jar with fall finery.

My Salvaged Treasures showed how to repurpose window screens.

Note Songs brought out a collection of milk glass to celebrate fall.

Have A Daily Dose Of Mrs. Olson created a gorgeous cottage bedroom. Look at those pretty plates!

Nancy's Daily Dish made pumpkin crisp.

What have you tweaked this week?
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Things I'd Like To Make

Last night I was perusing Pinterest, and I started thinking about all the crafts I'd like to make. 

And then I think about those cans of dog food the pupsters eat. Instead of tossing them, look at all these little pretties I could make. Instant desk storage.

The other day I found a plastic bag full of silverware I've collected here and there. I really should do something with it. Like this sweet little whimsical lampshade. Cute, huh?

I've always had an affinity for yardsticks. Especially vintage ones. Wouldn't these little crafts be fun to make?

I've always loved the feminine tussie-mussies. And I've always planned to make one. Or two. But just never got around to it. These would be fun as Christmas ornaments too.

I don't have fabric anymore. But I have a plastic bin full of felt and wool felt stored underneath my bed. A project something like this would be fun to make. And I love crazy quilt stitching. 

So maybe I'll get around to making one of these.

How about you? Do you have a craft project you just haven't gotten around to yet?
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A Loose Bird & Decorating Thoughts

October 11, 2015
I went to see Andrew yesterday morning. He naps around noon, so I only had a few hours to be with him. And they had plans later in the afternoon. 

When I got to the door and was ringing their doorbell, I noticed a little bird sitting on one of their outdoor porch chairs. I went over and looked at it more closely. Something had pecked its head and it seemed disoriented. 

So I scooped it up to put it in the backyard where it would more protection from the big ornamental grasses. I figured maybe it's mother would find it. 

Naturally when I got inside and was bending down to show it to Andrew, it got away. 

Did you know squirrels eat morning glory flowers?

Their house has huge two story ceilings, so this was a potential problem. I told my daughter to get a broom, as it had flown upstairs. While she tried to wave it down, I tried to guide it toward the back door. 

It took awhile, but finally we got it outside. Poor little thing. 

Andrew had never seen a baby bird or any bird up close and personal. So it was a learning experience. 

At 19 months, Andrew cannot say bird. Everything is "da" as in "that."

I haven't been taking my camera over to get photos of Andrew. For one thing, he is not still for more than a few seconds, except when I have him in my lap reading a book to him. And then if I'm trying to get photos, I'm not interacting with him.

I stopped at my pharmacy on the way home. The pain from this eczema/whatever-it-is is extremely painful. Hurts to sit due to that; hurts to stand or walk much due to the ankle.

It was pretty empty in there and the pharmacist and I had a long talk. He said it seemed to him that the gynecologist had not been able to come up with any real treatment that worked. And that perhaps I should try a dermatologist. 

I think he is right. She has thrown lots of very strong medicine at it, which can potentially cause it's own problems. She just took another very painful test almost two weeks ago, which came up with nothing. 

The thought of starting all over again with this is daunting. I'm tired of being prodded and cut into and finding no answers. I've had every kind of test they can think of. Which is costing me a lot of money.

And it's just getting more painful, not less. So I guess I will start looking for a dermatologist tomorrow. Sigh. 

I haven't shown you any of my office space because for some reason I just can't seem to get a handle on what I want. I move things about and think I like it, only to decide after a day or two that I don't.

Maybe some of this reluctance is the fact that I have not heard from the housing agency yet. I might have to move. I don't want to put a huge amount of effort into something that might not work someplace else. So I'm in that stage of frustration that I get into when I can't come up with a good plan.

Here is my advice when you are having problems coming up with a viable decorating solution. Sit on it. Move things about, live with it a few days, and then maybe move it again. If you're not completely satisfied with it, sit on it. (Hey, it's painful for me to sit on it: my stab at humor.)

You don't want to end up with something that took a lot of effort and money and then not like it. Best to do it in small stages and play the waiting game when it's just not coming together quickly. 

Sometimes projects come together in one day for me. Sometimes it takes weeks.

You want to be comfortable when you're working at your desk. And until you can arrive at a place where you feel comfortable, and have space for everything you need there, don't settle for less. 

Have a nice Sunday. My sedum Autumn Joy seems to be at its peak. Some of my mums are just now starting to bloom. 

As the cycle of seasons continues to evolve.
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Does Having A Decorating Style Really Mean Anything?

October 9, 2015
We all make references to decorating styles. But how much does that really figure into how you want your home to look?

Is it definitive? Or is it loosely labeled? 

Let's look at some styles Home Edit put together:

I'd say this room is a cross between several styles. The coffee table says "rustic." The couch is more contemporary or modern. 

If you pull a room together so that it offers a cohesive look, I'm not sure the style really matters.

Eclectic style offers a more relaxed and casual look. It means lots of styles that really boil down to no completely definite style.

Bohemian gives a nod to another era. Where then it meant that the person decorating the room didn't have a lot of cash to spend on it, today it means bold, colorful, and multi-faceted. Somewhat carefree and relaxed.

Coastal originally meant homes near the sea. Now it can mean a casual look with elements merely denoting water. Seashells, oars, things from and reminiscent of the sea.

Contemporary is spare and utilitarian. Oftentimes the elements in the room look cold (at least to me.)

Cottage is warm and cozy. The elements of this style bring back feelings of grandma's house on Thanksgiving day.

French Country is both classic and beautiful, yet also lends a shabbiness that says it's timeless, and not afraid to look worn and loved.

Industrial means more clean angular lines. The elements are steel and wood, and oftentimes looks like it belongs in an office or warehouse setting.

Mid-century is a nod to another era as well. It gained favor for a time, but I'm not sure how long that trend will stick around. The look to me is of something put together without much thought. 

But then, my style of decorating oftentimes looks like I didn't give it a lot of thought. So I guess my style is an amalgamation of all of the above. 

What is your style? Do you see it here?
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The Blacklist: Season 3

In this season of The Blacklist, Lizzie has had to change positions. No longer is she an FBI agent. Now she is a wanted criminal. 

Channeling another side of her, a dark side. Seen when she was beating up the man in the restaurant, and Red, obviously distressed, had to calm her. 

None of us know what we are truly capable of until we are put to the test.

She has changed her dark locks to blond, and from what I've been reading, fans love her new look. 

Her dark hair from the first two seasons showed a different type of woman. Someone authoritative and showing little emotion. A young FBI agent who went solely by the rules.

This Lizzie with the blond and casual hairstyle lends itself to a more vulnerable character. 

And certainly, when Red saw her walk into the room after having dyed her hair, he was so taken aback that he said, with such tenderness: "You look just like your mother."

Now the two are more like accomplices. And she is seen walking in different shoes. Which I think makes her more compassionate toward Reddington, his background and the things he's done.

She is now dependent on his decisions to keep them safe. His deep pockets and seemingly worldwide cast of characters who are ready and willing to help him at any cost. 

More tender moments we've seen between the two...

The question we've been asking one another the first two seasons is: Is Reddington her real father? 

I don't know if they're ever going to tell us that, and at this point I'm not even sure that it really matters. The bond between them has us spellbound.

We've become so familiar with the acerbic Reddington, talking about pecan pie while in the midst of danger. 

We've come to look forward to his use of facial expressions that remind me of the song: "If a picture paints a thousand words..." 

I was somehow more impressed with last night's episode than the season's opening last week. And I think that is due to the moments of obvious tenderness between Red and Lizzie. I think we have come to look forward to those moments more than any other.

Case in point: When they stood under the stars, and he pointed them out to her, was another father/daughter-like moment. 

And when the music from Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young began to play "Our House," I wondered: Now how is that song going to fit into the ending of this episode? It seemed an odd choice. 

But then as we saw the show's characters cast in their new plots, one by one, it made perfect sense somehow. 

Tom comes back next week. Will their relationship be as intimate as what we saw at the end of last season? These two obviously still have feelings toward one another.

Ressler also seems to have mixed feelings toward Lizzie. Even if he is able to capture his old friend, will he be able to do what his position says he must?

But, despite all the good acting on this show, indubitably, the true success of this show falls on the shoulders of James Spader, now co-executive producer/executive producer. This role was made for him to fill its shoes. 

Spader is a seasoned actor. This is definitely not his first pony ride. But I think it is truly his finest. 
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The Secret To Shopping Your House

October 8, 2015
I think people rush out to the stores to buy things before they've given what they already have a shot.

Why is this? 

Because people don't often think outside of the box. And that's what you have to do when you repurpose something to become something else. 

Got a dresser that you don't want hidden in the bedroom, and want out on display? Turn it into a coffee bar or put it in a special spot and display seasonal vignettes on it. 

I buy indoor/outdoor chairs at Pier 1. Whenever you buy something that is considered indoor/outdoor, it always seems to be cheaper. Which is kind of funny, since it has more purposes!

I want to move something in a room with an outdoor chair in it, I move it outside. If I need another chair somewhere inside, I go out on the patio and get an indoor/outdoor chair and put a nice cushion in it. 

Need a desk but don't have the money for one? Well, I'm in that position right now. I'm working on an office space, so I won't show you any of it till it's complete. 

But look around and see what you've got that with a little thought, could become your desk. 

If it's not big enough for your needs, add something else, a table for instance. 

Things do not have to match. In fact it looks better if it doesn't.

When I look at things in a store, I look at it and think of my space. I have a living space that adjoins a dining space, a small kitchen, a bathroom and a bedroom. 

I stand there and think of what all that item could become in various rooms. Because if I'm going to buy it, it's going to be multi purpose so I'm getting more bang for my buck. 

Need some shelf space up high, but only have a short shelf? Put it up on a table and you have instantly got what you wanted. And didn't have to pay a dime. 

The secret, really, is to make things look like they go together

When first you look at it, you may think, this doesn't look right. But then use your creativity to make it look right

By adding things to it, trying things out, edit and add, add and edit until it just somehow begins to look right!

It isn't as hard as it sounds. If you put something together and pretty it up, people will not notice that it is just a table with a shelf on it. They will see it as a great piece and not even think about it being two pieces. 

A sleight of hand!

Have a dining table, but you never use it? Then repurpose it somewhere else in your home. Use it as a desk, for instance. Use it in a craft room to do your crafts. Use it for your sewing machine.

Just because we have a dining room, doesn't mean we have to use that space as a dining room. We can make it an office, studio, den, book nook, play room, whatever you need most. 

That is also the secret of living in small spaces. You have to make them work for you. 

So before you head out to the stores to find that special something, make certain that that special something is not right there in front of you. But you've just never looked at it in that way. 

You will save money. You will save time and effort from going around from store to store looking for that special piece. 

If you have a piece but it just doesn't have that much going for it, you can give it new life in many ways. Paint it, stencil it, add wood appliques, change knobs.

The sky is the limit! 

Now walk around your home and garage, basement or attic, and look at your things in a whole new way. Tilt your head to the side and look at that piece of furniture from every conceivable angle. 

It has many, many possibilities. You just haven't discovered them yet. 

As Confucius said: "He who will not economize will have to agonize."
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