I am glad you chose to visit! My blog is a compilation of the many hats I find myself wearing. On any given day I may be an encourager, an instructor, or just a lady who is venting. You, dear reader, will probably identify with my triumphs and my tribulations! These snapshots fit into my Life Scrapbook I have named A. McInnis Artworks. I hope you will find something worth your while.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Christmas Tour: 2011

Christmas is here! I can't believe it's been a year since I posted a Christmas tour! This year I started every room with an inspiration piece and worked from there. Usually I make the decorations fit. I have finished the dining room, living room and kitchen. Take a tour!

Inspiration for living room was my beloved Betty McCool print.
I LOVE the colors, they are my very favorites...

rusty red, dusty gold and little bits of blue-green.

I bought ribbon accordingly. Glad Fads and Frames had theirs 60% off!

I repositioned the tree to the front window this year.

Topper was fun to construct...

feathers, birds, berries, ribbons and glittered Merry Christmas and seed pods.

Birdies of all types abounded...chirp, chirp...hoot, hoot...etc.

I really enjoy decorating nature inspired trees.

It brings out my "wild" side..lol.

Fireplace is all decked out...

(after going to WM at 10 pm for more lights...grrrrr.

This is really where you see my wild side.)

That leopard ribbon got a work out at my house this year.

My mother's secretary gets a touch of red and green.

Some of my paperweights get into the act.

On to the dining room, which is connected to the kitchen...have to be careful here.
Dining area inspirations...some new pictures.

Oil on canvas and wonderfully painted. (Not by me, I must confess.)

Nothing in my house has anything related to shells...however, I am always willing to try something new...so shells, it is!

Coordinating ribbons are pictured below...I used the copper and leopard from the living room to tie things together from one room to the next.

I added lime and turquoise to change it up a bit.

This tree drives everyone in my family nuts, but me! It leans...so?

It's tough living with perfectionists.

Since I had NO shell ornaments, I just glued hangers on the back of shells and hung them as ornaments...the topper is some sort of sea creature.

My Peter's pottery vase and McCarty shells came in handy here.

Side hutch doesn't need too much...it's getting a little busy.

You know how I am about visual noise.

Nativity scene has been updated some since this picture.

Ribbon on the buffet lamps and

more glittery ornaments set at different heights have been added.

Kitchen inspiration...bowl of new and vintage ornaments...

notice lime, turquoise and red appear again.

Below is the transition piece from dining room to kitchen...

And no holiday is complete without a lantern!

McCarty jade bowl and nutmeg squirrel reside happily together.

on my new little island.

Enough for now!!

I still have a few rooms to add...but I don't want to drive you as crazy as I drive my family. (Small doses of me is the prescription, they say.)

Hope your holidays are in full swing,

Friday, November 25, 2011

* Tale of Two Hairsprays

Ok, so for the first time in my life, I know what it's like to be on the other side of the counter on Black Friday! I just woke up from a little nap...it's now 8:45 pm and when I arrived home at 5:30 this afternoon, all I had strength to do was to eat supper and lie down "to rest" my feet. We had a very brisk day at Dwellings..to say the least.

Just a short post because I must remove my mascara, take a shower and hit the sack so I can start the madness all over again in the morning. Speaking of hairspray...for years, I have used an old Pantene hairspray bottle to mist my hair with water while rolling my hair. It was a pearly white color (the bottle, not my hair) and for some strange reason, I looked at it the other day and decided to throw it away...just like that, after years of faithfully pumping out a fine spray of misty water, I just tossed it. (This was my first mistake. Lesson: Never dispose of a tried and true friend in a moment of thoughtlessness.)

I use Suave hairspray..I know, I know...your great grandmother used that hairspray... you are probably horrified, but when you get to a certain age, a swing "do" just doesn't "do" anymore. I have to spray my mop until it feels concrete-ish. I don't carry off "swinging in the breeze" very well anymore.

I had purchased a new bottle of Suave and it has a new look, very updated. (See picture below to compare new and old design.) So I decided to retire the old Pantene bottle and use my "old" Suave bottle instead of Pantene to mist my unrolled hair. If you must know, this misting gives tired, limp, thin hair a tiny boost at the roots. (I heard you snicker.)

Now, I'll make this short...I was late for work at Dwellings the other morning. I don't know why, but I have made it to school by 7:15-7:30 every day for 31 years and I can't make it to work at my own shop, which doesn't open until 10:00! I digress...I was hurrying to tame the wild beast, as my hair is affectionately known, and as I finished it's morning tease, I began spraying the "concrete spray" for all it's worth. Completing that job, I grabbed my toothbrush and began brushing...hurry, hurry. I gave my hair a last once over and noticed, it felt funny, so I grabbed the Suave again and began spraying away. What on the planet is wrong with this NEW spray, I wondered. Every time I sprayed, which by this time was the fourth time, my hair looked more limp and a whole lot like I'd been caught in a tsunami! This new formula certainly didn't dry as quickly as the old one either...uh, oh. You see where this is leading, don't you? Of course, you do...I was spraying with the "water" bottle, NOT the hairspray bottle. STOP THE MADNESS!

After blow drying it and quickly re-rolling, misting and spraying it with the right bottle, I was on my way....one more hurdle in life cleared...where is my Pantene bottle when I need her? The "new" misting bottle now has a great big X on it...I think I'm getting old in my old age.

May your hair swing freely your whole life,

Friday, November 18, 2011

Library Christmas Tour

Well, it feels like I'm coming home! Thank you for being patient with me as I transition to a new business venture. I'm embarrassed to admit that I never knew how difficult it was to own one's own business...it is very difficult!

Until May, I am still at school and this is one of my favorite times of the year because I get to decorate the school tree! I wanted to share our 2011 decorations with you.

This is the tree from the foyer. As you walk through the front doors of the school, it's the first thing you see!

This year's theme is music and we used silver and gold to carry our message.

Our bow is gold and white mesh with a sheer white filler ribbon
adorned with silver and golden polka dots.

Ribbon for our topper and these beautiful ornaments are from guess who?
Paul Michael's!

All but eight of the ornaments were Dollar Tree and WM finds. We picked up some big musical notes for 5 cents a piece at Hudson's . The fans were made from old Christmas music.

The two little Russell's are pleading with Santa not
to overlook their wonderful behavior this year!!

Each year a very special class at our school makes wonderful ornaments for our tree. We coordinate with them and this year they will be making angels for this tree. I decorated it like this until they put their ornaments on...we love these students and appreciate their making our library so special. Teachers and students purchase the ornaments and I must say we have all amassed quite a collection over the years.

Now who do you suppose sings the sweetest Christmas melodies?
Well, angels, of course!

I must admit these were a labor of love...folding each page of a 250 page book takes about 3 hours...then there is the head, the hair, the halo, the wings!

I hope you agree that they lend a nostalgic air to the setting. White lights twinkle from under the burlap background. Snowy pine and white feather boa adds softness. If you are interested, the angels are on sale at my shop, Dwellings..Re-Fined. They are $25. I hate to say it, but I don't think they will mail very well... :(

Other little touches are our small library display table tree.

Ornaments on curly willow branches...

And gold mercury glass combined with silk magnolia wreaths.

I have been asked every year, "Why do you go to such lengths to decorate the library?" Or, "Who has the time and why would you spend it that way?" May I be blunt? Each year somebody asks to have their picture made in front of the tree. Why do you think that is? For some it's fun to have their friends gather and the photo makes a nice remembrance...but for others, this IS their tree. We do it for everybody, but especially for them....they make my heart sing when they express appreciation or delight. Why? Why indeed!
Once again, I've regained my footing and hope to post more often.
For those who have stayed, thank you...I have really missed posting.

Giving thanks for you,

Sunday, November 13, 2011

New Blog Link

Please, join me in my journey as a new business owner! I would love for you to "follow" my new blog http://dwellingsrefined.blogspot.com !

See what we made today by reading here!