Thursday, December 31, 2009

Holiday Lights For You

Hi there.  Take a look at Bill my postman, who is part of Santa's team a few days before the big day.  Doesn't he look cute and festive?  He told me later that while on his route that day walking around, he got a lot of thumbs up and whistles!

Here are more of Flora's decorations:


So much work!!  She has help of course.  She doesn't get on the roof anymore since a few years ago she got stuck up there until someone could help her down.  She starts in just before Thanksgiving and then the day after she is all ready to flip the switches and on goes the display.  This year, she added some more to her abundant collection.  She now has a Mickey and Mini Mouse on a teeter totter and some others. 

Well, tonites the big nite and a new decade.  I sure hope it's a better one for most people overall.  I always ask Santa for PEACE (in the world), that is all I want for Christmas every year.  I hope you are celebrating in whatever way makes you happy tonite and that you are with people you love.

Here's to a wonderful 2010!!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

My Own Personal Frosty

HELLO!  Whew, it's been awhile since I've been here!  Hope you've been good and Santa brought you some nice things while I've been gone.  What a whirlwind of a month and the years almost over, wow.  My lovely neighbor Flora, loves to decorate at Christmas time and she goes all out on her house and the home she owns next door, too.  This is Frosty the Snowman from my kitchen window, my own personal Frosty who kept me company when I spent many long nights baking too many cookies!  There he stood glowing in the darkness continuing to wish me a Merry Christmas and saying, MAKE MORE COOKIES, MORE COOKIES!

Here he is in the morning.  No, there isn't any snow on the palm tree in the background!

Oh, how I wanted to write and tell you of our busy days here at the shop but no, I had to leave to make cookies!  AND what a shame, I didn't take one photo of all the cookies I made and decorated....I just was too tired at the end of the night.  We didn't decorate at home, only at the shop this year and so this cookie making, was my decorating and contribution to the Christmas party at my sister's home.  More pix coming in the following days.
Hope you are all cozy and ready for New Years Eve!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

It's beginning to look allot like Christmas (Cactus)

Hello!  Hope you have all recovered from the huge turkey dinners last week!  I spent most of the day cooking even though I only got a turkey breast this year, bought one pumpkin pie, canned cranberry sauce and yes I did I got instant mashed potatoes!  It's the stuffing, gravy and candied yams that kept me busy. 

We haven't been busy yet here at the shop and it's Dec 2nd already.  I wonder how busy we will be.  Are people going to ship gifts this year?  Hmm, time will tell.  I've been busy listing items onto Ebay and my auctions are doing ok.  I started putting the trim on the jacket, I'll show some pix soon.

Enjoy the Christmas Cactus!

This is the dark pink one.  It's become a large plant over the years.

This is the light pink one.  This is what they look like just before they open:

Here is the red one.  I moved it outside last year so it would do better:

Hope you are getting some time for yourself to make this your best holiday season ever!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

O' Happy Day to Ya

This is a young Hummingbird after she had just left the nest last Spring.  Her mama was close by watching.  She kept trying her new wings leaving and then coming back to this bush.  What a treat this was to witness.
I am grateful for all creatures large and small, for you and me, my family and friends.  Hug those close to you today and tell them that you love them.  Then eat turkey and all the trimmings to your heart's content.
What are you thankful for? 
Have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Decisions, Decisions

I got this jacket for a steal and since it's plain, I thought of embellishing it and embroidery came to mind.  It is mostly wool and acrylic flannel fabric and very soft.  Perfect for winters here in So. California.

Here are the color choices for the edging.  Amazing what happens with the lighting and taking pictures.  These all match better in real light.  Go Lighter or darker than the fabric, hmmm, not sure.  Haven't decided on what I'm gonna do exactly.  Go around the edge and then maybe flowers on the pockets???? 

Here are some new colors chosen for the potential flowers.

Worked on it a bit last night but still haven't decided!

Friday, November 20, 2009

My African Violets

Last Spring, I almost lost all my indoor African Violet plants!  I have about 20 plants and they were bloomin' like mad and so beautiful.  They like it in my red bathroom (it was red when we moved in, wouldn't have been my choice, too much red)  Very bright without direct light on 'em.  Then one fine day as I was admiring them, I saw what looked like dust on the darker purple flower petals of one plant and looked closer and lo and behold was what looked like thrips!!!  Thrips are very tiny sucking insects that multiply fast and can kill a plant by sucking all the life out of 'em.  They were feasting on the pollen and making it fall onto the petals, OH, NO!  So I checked out all my babies and they almost all were affected, some worse than others aahhhhggg!  WHAT DO I DO?  So I did my online research and found a solution.

First I had to sadly pick off ALL THE FLOWERS & BUDS (boo hoo) because the pollen is what the thrips like to feed on as well as sucking.  Then on the weekend, I went and got pure Neem oil and mixed it according to the website directions and drenched the top leaves, soil and made sure the undersides of the leaves were drenched as well.  Then I did it again about 1 and 1/2 weeks later to kill any that might have lived through the first drenching.  A big job with 20 plants!  They didn't seem to like the cure very much.  Kinda stunted their growth and the soil was a bit compacted.  They were sad.  My mini variegated plant died but I saved a leaf to start a new plant from it yeah! (see pix below).  I did lose 2 plants.  After about 2 months of watching them carefully, I bought new special soil for them and transplanted them all and then they began to look better, then perk up and now they are finally blooming for me.

See the mini in the middle?

Same picture as above without flash.  These are the handful that are blooming right now, the others are budding out.

Check out these amazing blooms.  See how violets have sparkles on the petals?  Sorta magical...

And to think... I almost discarded this one when she got weak and scraggly looking!   I love how the flowers lay upon the leaves instead of bunching up into the middle.

When I did more research on violets I found that often times you can bring thrips into the house from having been working in the garden, they get on your clothes, and then you go attend your houseplants and they jump off onto them.  I think that is how this happened.  So I have learned to stay away from the houseplants when I come in from the yard.  I have Gladiolus flowers that the thrips love to get on every spring.  So I must be careful!

Hope you have a lovely weekend and remember to stop and smell the roses!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Still Workin' On It But It's Coming Along...

The new Vista computer didn't want to see the weight scale.  Because of this, we had to manually enter the weight into the program.  Below is my son and Danny talking about how to fix a few of the issues we are still having with it.  I haven't tried to install some of the older software I have yet.  Vista may not allow any of it.  Time will tell. 

Here is the mess with all the cords everywhere.  Right now it is a tad more organized than this but it is still a mess since we have to keep working with it.
Last Friday we seemed to get it to work and see the scale, YEAH!!  Working today as well, YEAH!  Now to get to know Vista.  A different animal than XP.  I'll get to tackling the cords this week.

I spent my Sunday, taking lotsa pics of stuff I'm gonna sell on ebay.  I have all the shipping capabilities anyone could want, so to take advantage of that, I sell stuff when I get inclined to do so now and then.  Check out my stuff on ebay (click here)

Hope your computer is having a good day and that you are having a great one!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

My Other Helpers

Meet my business neighbor and friend, Tina.  She is the optometrist's office manager that works next door to my shop.  Since we both work alone allot of the time, we call each other occasionally to vent about something that happened and we just can't keep it to ourselves.  She's into Jazz music and men's volleyball and baking goodies for her friends.  She makes these yummy brownie cookies that she gives me at holiday time.  You can find her at Jazz clubs around LA.  She grew up in Los Angeles in what she calls "the hood".  She's a tough cookie with a heart of gold!

Here is my DHL Driver, Jose.

He mostly picks up and sometimes he delivers.  He's been with DHL a long time.  I miss DHL's domestic service they had here in America.  I think they did a good job and it's always good to have more competition to help keep costs down.  Maybe they'll be back when the economy recovers.  Right now, they continue to do their international services.  Got something to go far away to foreign lands?  DHL does a great job so come and ship with us!!!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A Thank You

Today in America is Veteran's Day.  Pause a bit and thank the servicemen and women who have given their time and sometimes their life to protect and serve us so we may continue to be free.

               Thank You!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Pretty Autumn For You

I went to Tuesday Morning (it's a store) and found this:

Of course for now it will get packed away until after we move!  Such a deal.  They have great prices on closeout items.

Here are some of my plants and how they look right now:

This is almost ready to open.  It is an African Violet plant.  I have about 20 plants and this one is special.  I bought it at the Descanso African Violet Show and Sale last year and the flowers are oh, so pretty.

This is how she looked the following morning.  When she is in full bloom, I'll have more photos to show you then.

This is a Creeping Charlie plant.  Most people have this as an indoor plant.  I does well outside if not in direct sun and it even blooms when grown outdoors.  It will not tolerate extreme cold but does well here in So. Cal.

Here is a close up of the delicate blossoms.  White with purple freckles.

My Bromeliads are really going to town right now.  This is what they look like just before they open and show their small blue flowers.
Here is a close-up of the flowers.  A better one than a couple weeks ago!

Hope you're having a beautiful day!