Chillin' at CRT on Xpu Ha Beach

Chillin' at CRT on Xpu Ha Beach
How I'd spend every day if I weren't redecorating, cooking, sewing and blogging!

Friday, March 30, 2012

My Spring Centerpiece is a "little" Different This Year

As I go from blog to blog looking at all the beautiful Spring tablescapes and Easter centerpieces,  I try not to drool and I think about my dining room table and try to put on a happy face.  For reasons I'm not sure I can remember I agreed to make my daughter's dress for Senior Prom.

My dining table has a couple of centerpieces this spring -

a serger

a sewing machine

a bit of lace

and a dozen yards of fabric and net

Sneak peak at the progress on April 3rd post here

I was questioning my sanity a couple of weeks ago, realizing that my weekends were going to be all about sewing for the foreseeable future.

But as I began fitting the pattern and cutting the fabric, I remembered why I was doing this.  I remembered the last few years trying on dozens of dresses, looking for one that fit right, settling for good enough or altering.  I remember my daughter wanting to have a unique dress, but attending almost every formal or semi-formal event with 3 or 4 other girls wearing the same dress.  To me this just means they have good taste but to a teenage girl this isn't cool.

So I agreed to make the dress so it would fit really well and be unique.  I'm good with that.

I took a 10 minute break from sewing, grabbed my Easter decor and tossed some of it out on the coffee table.  It didn't turn out looking blog worthy, but at least I can see it from the sewing machine when I look up.

My kids have made some funky eggs over the years and I had to put some on display.  The blown out eggshells keep pretty well if you put them in a basket of grass, put the basket in a plastic bag, hang the bag over a clothes hanger and hang them up in the closet.

These are a far cry from Debbie's beautiful eggs at Word on Wheels, check them out here.  But that's okay because they were made by my kids, so they are perfect for me.

 Much Love & Laughter,


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Thursday, March 29, 2012

Pictures That Make Me Smile - The Graduate

You can tell by the quality of this photo that it wasn't take this year, or last year.  Nope, this was 1999. 

But it's particularly significant because this baby girl is about to wear another cap and gown.  In a couple of months, it's High School Graduation for the last of my sweeties.  In this case sweeties refers to my offspring.  I'm prone to referring to everyone as sweetie, because I'm from The South and we like endearments because we just LOVE everybody, sugar! Using an endearment also prevents me from calling my kids by the wrong name. Not that I would every do that.  I especially would NEVER call them by one our cats' names, really, I would not do that - ever often.

So Congrats, in advance, to my daughter, Colleen, for completing 14 years of school.  No she wasn't held back (although there's no shame in that if it gives the kids the skills they need to succeed in school and life)  She spent two years in kindergarten because her preschool had too many 4 year-old kiddos and they bumped her up to the K class when she was four.  So the kid had TWO full years of ALL day Kindergarten.  How's that for a foundation?

The Graduate - 1999
I'm so proud of my beautiful daughter and wish her all the best for her future - The best is yet to come!

Yes, she's still my Baby Girl, even though she looks more like this these days.

Glam - 2011
 There will be another cap and gown photo in the near future and another prom pic (hopefully wearing the dress I'm trying my best to construct)

Much Love & Laughter,


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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Toile to Tuscan - Dining Room Before & After

Can wallpaper ruin your appetite? 

I lived in my new "old"  house with 18th Century Reproduction blue toile wallpaper for more than FOUR long years.  That wallpaper was sort of weird - it had gardening tools and musical instruments, so I was able to tolerate it (because I appreciate weirdness) while I completed other projects.  But in my minds eye - I could see the potential.  I HAD A DREAM!

And it wasn't this room
(sorry for the sorry picture, but it just wasn't a room I wanted to take a picture of so much

You can read about the makeover of the chandelier here
One day, I started this project by accident.  I saw a little piece of toile wallpaper curling up in the corner and I thought, "I wonder if I pull on this if it will just come right off?"  SO I PULLED. And it peeled off and peeled off and then it stopped.  So now I had pulled off a big 'ole piece of the wallpaper, and the project was on!

Unfortunately, there was a second layer of paper under the first and in places whole sections of both layers pulled right off easy as pie and in other places it had to be picked off and wet down and picked off again.  Oh the joys of wallpaper removal!  If my hero, SuperDave and my son, Michael had not helped, I would still be in there picking off wallpaper.  But they helped a lot and we got it off so the "FUN" part of the project could start. 

Now I've told you about SuperDave and how great he is at everything and it's true.  But the man HATES refuses to paint.  So painting projects are mostly on me, but he will help with taping, cleaning, electrical issues, etc.  And I'm grateful for every bit of that help.  He also will pick up dinner and fix me a drink when I collapse in a heap at the end of the day. See why he's my hero?

Layer #1 and Layer #2 of the wallpaper
Are we having fun yet?

Climbing up and down a ladder is great exercise, feel that burn!

Did I mention this was a process?

Did I mention that I have a full time job?
(other than wife, mom, cook, painter and blogger)

Did I tell you that a project like this takes weeks to complete?
  because I only have the energy to work on them on the Saturday and Sunday

I started at the top - the ceiling of course! Thankfully, this room already had the popcorn ceiling removed, so it had no texture, it was just painted with flat white. 

To highlight the crown moulding I painted the ceiling blue and used a silver glaze.  I like to roll on glaze with a sponge roller so some areas are flat and some are shiny.  I wasn't 100% happy with the glaze on the day I finished with it, but it's one of those things where no one else can see a problem and after a few days neither can I.  I've learned to step back and look at things less critically a few days after completing a project.

Note to self: Painting a twelve foot ceiling is not fun, consider carefully in the future before attempting

The lower wall below the chair rail, I applied a troweled texture and painted dark brown.

The upper wall I left untextured and painted with Valspar Tuscan Accents from Lowe's.

Did I mention that it was all worth it?

It was worth every sore muscle, every bruise, every dollar and living with a mess until it was complete.

Disregard the cats, they really like to sneak into pictures

The two paintings were done by my Mom,
I am thinking of moving them and putting up something different but first I have to find the "something"
I made the curtains from tablecloths, read about it here
Time for dinner!  My appetite is healthy once again!

Much Love & Laughter,


Linking up to

Show Us Your House


Chic on a Shoestring Decorating

No Minimalist Here

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Happy Anniversary, Again and again and again

Today is my wedding anniversary - sort of - it's not the traditional one that most people acknowledge.  You know, the one that comes once a year.  Today is my monthly anniversary. 

Today I've been married 32 years and 3 months . 

 I just sent my husband a text to tell him Happy Anniversary.  I'm a big mush pot where that man is concerned.  And honestly, I think he likes me telling him Happy Anniversary 12 times a year.

I believe this started during YEAR ONE of our marriage.  Oddly enough I don't know all those important dates like our first date, when we got engaged, etc.  But during our first year I started acknowledging that if was our anniversary on the 27th of every month and when it became 1 year and one month, 1 year and two months, etc,  I just kept on acknowledging it every month. And I did pretty good for the first 30 years or so.

At this point I know I've missed it at least 6 times in the 32 years and 3 months we've been married, because it was Saturday or something and I didn't look at the calendar.  I always HATE it when I forget!

For our big 30 anniversary we went to the most wonderful resort in Mexico. Click the picture of our toes at the top of my blog and it will take you to a site with information about the Catalonia Royal Tulum.  If you love beautiful beaches and just totally relaxing, you'll love this place.

At the CRT, they made us this little cake and it was delicious!  I wish I had one like it right now, and on the 27th of every month for that matter.  Maybe I should make a special dessert on our monthly anniversary - just to enhance the celebration.  What do you think? 

Or maybe our new tradition should be going out to lunch or dinner on the 27th of every month - in observance of our special day.  Then I could just order ONE serving of a sweet little dessert and I wouldn't have 12 more servings left over just begging me to eat them too. 

Much Love & Laughter,


So What Do You Think of That?

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Monday, March 26, 2012

Oh, The Places I Would Go!

I love to travel.  I love to see new and exciting places.  IF money were no object and we weren't constrained by jobs and needing to WORK for a living, my husband and I would spend a good deal of our lives visiting new places and meeting new people.  We are always up for another adventure.

I always cry when I watch the movie UP.  If you think this movie is for kids, please watch it, because it makes some very good points.  LIFE is an adventure and if you travel through your life living that adventure with the one you love, you are very blessed.


picture is from the movie UP by Disney/Pixar

A few years ago I traveled to California with my sisters, my brother, my parents and several other members of our family.  My aunt and uncle were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary and 13 members of the Oklahoma branch of the Wiginton family crashed the party.  My Uncle Jim and my Dad proudly proclaimed that between the two of them they had been married 104 years. 

While we were there, we drove from my their home in Sacramento to Lake Tahoe.  This is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been and I was so excited to go back.  I love mountains and lakes and this is one place that shouldn't be missed if you love mountains and lakes as much as I do.

I took this picture of two of my nieces right after one of them looked into the clear water and said, "Can you a believe how clear the water is?  And this is SUPPOSED TO BE A LAKE!"  We have lots of beautiful lakes in Oklahoma, but the water is sort of "murky."



We went sailing on the lake (I love sailing) and I absolutely LOVE this picture of me with my siblings even though our hair is sticking up. (except for my bro) I love this picture because we were having so much fun and because we haven't traveled much together as adults so this was a very special adventure. My sister, Pam, might disagree with the SO MUCH FUN part because she and her daughter were sort of sea sick. Can you get sea sick on a lake? 



We also visited San Franciso one day - another city I love!  (don't want to live there but it's an awesome place to visit)  Check out this awesome picture from the beach in SanFrancisco
 I'm not sure where my brother and sister-in-law were when we took this picture with my sisters and two of my cousins.  Maybe taking the picture?  Maybe just letting the girl cousins be in a shot by themselves.


The anniversary party was awesome and I must share this picture because it has ALL the girls in the family born with the name Wiginton (my maiden name) from my Dad's sister down to my brother's youngest baby girl.  Girls are dominant in my Dad's family, he and his brother each have three and my brother has four.

And of course I must share this photo of my Aunt Louise and Uncle Jim because they are the reason we all made the trip to California!  Traveling to visit family was the only kind of vacation my family took when I was growing up and it's still a very good reason for a new adventure.

My top reasons for a new adventure
Visiting Family - always an adventure!

Traveling WITH Family to new fun places 

Traveling WITH Family to places you've already been, but love so much you need to go back

Getting AWAY from family to spend time with your sweetie - definitely an adventure!

One of the most exciting thing to me about blogging is that people view my blog from all around the world!  Please leave me a comment so I can check out your blog or just say hi and thank you for stopping by Life Begins at Forty Something.  

Much Love and Laughter,


So What Do You Think of That?

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Saturday, March 24, 2012

Friday, March 23, 2012

Scrapbooking is Not my Thing

Some people, like my sister, REALLY love scrap booking. I love to look at other people scrapbooks.  I think they are great, but all that cutting and pasting is not my thing.

What is my thing?  What do I do with my photos to commemorate special times in my life? 

I LOVE to make Shutterfly Photo Albums.  I've made them as Christmas gifts for our parents, for vacations, 50th anniversaries, and my son's wedding.

I'm sure there are any number of photo album sites you can choose from, but I've already made friends with this one so I'll just stick with what I've already learned to save myself time and effort.  Because saving myself time and effort is ALWAYS a good thing.

I discovered when I decided to do this subject on my blog that taking pictures of books is not easy, so apologies for the photography, I will get more creative next time.

Vacation Albums are great!

I take SO many pics on vacation and no one really wants to see all of them, so this is a great way to tell a story and share a few photos from an awesome trip.  With all the digital photos being stored on our computers these days, it's nice to be able to sit down and flip through an album.

Shutterfly albums have plenty of cool backgrounds. 

You can add your own text or lines from a favorite song.

I love this album I created for my son and daughter-in-law
One of my favorite features is using photos for backgrounds.
Here I used a shot of the wedding rings for the background.
I purchased a copy of this album for the happy couple and a copy for myself. 
Shutterfly usually has some good discounts, so be sure to use them to get your books at the lowest price.

I had the vows printed in the book, which is especially nice for those who were not able to attend the wedding

I love this book so much I wish I could show you ever page,
but I'll try to exercise a little self-control.

Chelsie loves cotton candy, so she had it served
at the reception, made for many cute pics!

I also made an album after our Florida vacation last year, notice the backgrounds using pictures I took of waves on the shore.

There is no end to the creativity when making your own albums and they will be cherished and loved.  Go check out the site if you haven't already.  I hope you like it!

  Much Love and Laughter,


Linking up today for Flaunt it Friday!

Chic on a Shoestring Decorating

Friday Feature Party #48 and Mes Préférés

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