I found out about a great giveaway this morning while browsing through blogland. One of the blogs I regularly read had a link to another blog who was having a wonderful giveaway to celebrate her 1 year anniversary in blogland!
Last night when I got home I was greeted with this...I was sooooooooooo excited to get these packages open!
Would you like to check out all the scrumptiousness inside with me?!?
The No Sew Block Swap package arrivedwith this little gift inside (Kathleen you are too sweet, hosting and giving gifts!!)(It is a mini tissue holder-so cute!!)
The big package is my order from Pink Chalk Fabrics. They were having a FANTABULOUS sale on some of their home decor fabrics last week so I put in a huge order for some great fabric (it is time for some updates in the Master bed and bath!!)Along with the main fabric I ordered, I picked out a couple of other fabrics, since I was making an order I might as well get a few other things right?!? I am a huge fan of Pink Chalk Fabrics! I got the fabric on sale, got credit for a discount they started a few days after I purchased the fabric, they have a 7 day price guarantee, and they even threw in a little extra cut of another coordinating fabric with my order-which I love!!
Now I just have to find the time to dig into all these delicious fabrics and create!!
I had ordered this little gift from Udder Covers when they had a special sale last week. I think it will make a fabulous shower gift!! (Mary do you want to buy it from me for Emily?)
For a lunch break on Monday, mom and I ran over to A Classy Flea and did some shopping. I am looking for a dresser, but didn't have any luck there. I did find several other things I wanted to bring home with me, but restrained myself to just getting this lovely piece of fabric. Hubby will be glad I didn't come home with the desk, shelf and antique screened-in armoire that I wanted to buy! (But I think we will just keep that fact from him. He wouldn't be proud of me for NOT buying them, he would be annoyed with me for wanting to buy them in the first place!!)
I also picked up a bit of loveliness at Joann's (had to exchange something, but they were having a great sale so came out with some other goodies!!)The foam is for the headboard project I hope to get around to someday soon. Ever since we got our king size bed we have been without a headboard!!
I also ran by Borders. I had a 40% off coupon, so I picked up a new book with my coupon (the top one in the picture below) along with 5 books on the dollar sale rack! Feast your eyes on these beauties. (I don't know anything about any of them, so if you have read them you can let me know if it is worth my time, for $1 each I couldn't say resist!!) (I really don't know when I am going to find the time to get all of these books on my to read list actually read! I think I have a problem with overwhelming myself with things to do!!)
Eliza's Daughter by Joan Aiken was one of the books I picked out at my little library last weekend (2/6). I finished it Saturday morning & I meant to get a review up before now, but it is always hard to get anything done on the weekends. (I am either busy running errands, reading, shopping, sewing, or being lazy and enjoying some zone-out time watching a movie or two!) I did pretty much all of that this weekend, along with some playing in the snow!!
I was not overly impressed with this book. I must clarify that I think Joan Aiken is a great writer in the terms that, I was never bored while reading this book. She did a great job keeping my attention and developing characters, I just didn't really like the characters in the book. (I guess the original problem stems from the fact that I really didn't like what she did with the beloved characters from the Austen classic Sense and Sensibility!) I was liking her heroin, Eliza, who is a new character, and some of the other new characters as well. Of course there were things I didn't like about the new characters or settings of the book, which is normal, but overall I was still enjoying it. (I was pretending like these were all new characters, none of them were the ones from Sense and Sensibility, they just happened to have that same name and similar background stories, but were not the same ones!!) But then the end of the book came and I decided I just disliked this book all together!
I am sure that there are plenty of people who would enjoy this book completely, but it just wasn't for me. From the beginning I didn't like certain things about it, but I thought if I just ignored the fact that it was supposed to be about the characters from Sense and Sensibility I could like the book, but then the end just ruined it all for me! I am somewhat picky about book endings, if I am going to invest so much time into something, I want to like how it ends. (I am picky about movie endings, but less so than books, because a movie only takes a few hours of your time at most, books can take days, weeks or, sometimes with me-I am a slow reader people, even months!!)
Overall, I am not saying don't read this book, it wasn't like I felt like it was horrible or anything, I just personally didn't like it. I am now wondering if I want to invest my time into any of her other books. Joan Aiken wrote one called Jane Fairfax, based on a character from Jane Austen's Emma, and another one, Mansfield Park Revisited, that takes place after Austen's Mansfield Park ends. Both of these were on my to read list, but now I am not so sure. Has anyone already read these?
I had a long weekend since it snowed on Friday (go here to see some AMAZING photos of the GA snow!!) and so I got to go home early.
(These were all taken early in the afternoon and the snow just kept coming!!)
I enjoyed my afternoon by watching Miss Austen Regrets and started watching Sense and Sensibility, but then Kevin got home (and was making fun of my movie) so we got wrapped up and went outside and played in the snow! (Snow really turns Kevin and I into big kids!!) Making Snow Angels with Zach MaryKyle and John MarkSnowball fight!! (It was boys against girls!)Kevin got me face first down into the snowMaryKyle and I tried to get him back (he had gotten her as well!)
(Photo's from Rachel...hope you don't mind that I used them here!)
Later in that night I read more of Eliza's Daughter and nearly finished it, but I was exhausted from a long fun day and had to go to sleep, so I ended up reading the last two chapters Saturday morning.
While I relaxed watching some movies over the weekend I started this new project.(Which I am going to have to take out, because I made it to big and I am going to run out of yarn if I don't take it out and start over!! I am a
V E R Y
S L O W
knitter, but I am excited to try this pattern out. It may be next February, or beyond, before it is finished, but I really want to try to improve my knitting skills, so I am starting out with a fairly simple pattern!!)
I think these should have surly reached their homes now so I can share the snapshot of the bookmarks I made for Marmee and my three sisters for Valentines Day. (I made them several weekends ago.) I also put another border or two on mom's quilt. (It is going to be very small, but that means it may actually get finished, since I am not very good at completing big projects!!)
The same day I recorded Miss Austen Regrets on my DVR, the Masterpiece collections version of Sense and Sensibility aired on PBS as well. I had only ever seen this version before of this book, and I was highly impressed with this one. (Sadly, Kev was around for part of my viewing of this one, therefore I was forced to endure his remarks, and try to explain it to him. I will say that watching The Jane Austen Club as ruined me, because I want my husband to desire to read Miss Austen's amazing works as well. But I fear that will always remain a dream. He has only just begun to appreciate the written word at all, being more of a movie and video games guy his whole life! I will not live in anticipation of his coming to me someday with the exclaimation that Jane Austen truly was a genious and how he cannot wait to read all her books with me!)
If you would like to read the synopsis of the film, you can find it here. I think the characters were well played, and although there are parts that I don't remember from the book, although it has been ages since I have read it, I truly enjoyed it overall, in fact some of the added parts really did make the films point about what these young couples in love, yet not at liberty to act on their love, get acrossed. It took a moment to get used to the characters being played by someone else, but I think I liked this version's portrayal of Elinor and Edward even better than the other. (And I love Hugh Grant and Emma Thompson!)
Well, I won't say anything else, because this isn't my talent, but I would most definitly recommend this film, and if anyone wants to get it for me for my birthday, I wouldn't complain!!
(Note: I finished reading Eliza's Daugther by Joan Aiken, and so I shall have a review for you on that soon as well!)
As I have said before, and I am sure will say again, I am not gifted in the composition of reviews. However, I watched this PBS special, Miss Austen Regrets, and will give a simple telling of my thoughts on this film.
First, I must say how thankful I am to have access to these films through PBS. I LOVE classics and for some reason had not be taking full advantage of what this channel offers to me. So I was very pleased when I ran across a blog or website that mentioned the new Emma that they recently aired. This reminded me of this great resource for classical entertainment, and I have been setting my DVR quite often since then to catch whatever airings they have in which I have the desire to watch!
Miss Austen Regrets was one of these such programs and I loved it. It was very sad, but I will say I think that I have come to realize that most artists, especially those who are now well known and loved, didn't get to see or experience that love for their work in their own lifetime. Or even if they did, for Jane was already fairly famous in her own time, artists seem to have lived very troubled and painful lives. Not that there wasn't any joy in them, and I think this film did a great job at showing Jane's love for her family. You especially see the special bond Jane had with her sister. (Which being a sister myself, I will say it is a bond like no other, that special relationship and love you have for your sisters!) I like that this movie seemed to show a truly loving family, and the unconditional love and devotion that comes with that. Oftentimes the families portrayed in books and films of that time period appear as if they have no true love for each other, but I think it is shown that this family really did love each other. There were hardships, misunderstandings and the sense of duty, but the love was there as well, keeping them together.
I will admit, quite readily, that I cried while watching this, of course I cry at films easily, it is real life that I normally have trouble finding tears for! I am a huge Austen fan, and I enjoyed this portrayal of her life, even if it was sad, there was true joy and happiness as well. I have not myself read any biographies about her life (some of these are on my forever long to do list) so I don't really know how much is based on fact and how much is fiction, but I did enjoy it and would recommend it to anyone.
I think the characters were well played and I thoroughly enjoyed the entire show. (Of course it did help that Kevin wasn't home and poking fun at every other word that was said, like he normally does if he happens to be around when I am watching a period piece!)
Wow, this week has flown by. It is already Thursday and I am still writing about the weekend. (Well, or maybe it was just a really full weekend!!)
Sunday was a great day! I drove over to Intown Quilters for the first meeting of the Atlanta Modern Quilt Guild. It was great to meet some local ladies with fabulous crafting talent. I am excited to see what comes from this new guild. These ladies are all so talented, I hope some of their amazing-ness rubs off on me!! I forgot to get a picture of us all together as a group, but here are a couple shots I took during our meeting.We are a small group, but we are just starting out, so I am sure we will grown over time. Just check out some of those amazing quilts hanging in the background...I was in awe!! (And as I mentioned in an earlier post, thanks to my relapse in my DVD buying addition, I was able to walk out of that amazing quilt shop without spending a single dollar!!)
After the meeting I met Mom, Dad & Kels at the Princess Diana Exhibit that is in town right now.
It was so neat to see. I have always loved Princess Di. I think it goes back to the story my mom would tell me about being up to nurse me, so she stayed up and watched the wedding on TV. Therefore I always felt a connection with mom and me and Princess Di. It was a really neat exhibit with some great history about her growing up, her charitable work, and more. The last room of the exhibit is a collection of her clothes. Some of those dresses had amazing beading work on them! (I will say I am glad I wasn't old enough to care about fashion in the 80's and early 90's because, in my personal opinion...it was plain scary people!!) But looking at her array of clothing reminded how much I really do love fashion-even though anyone who see's me on a daily basis would think that was a lie...I tend to live in what is comfortable-I really do love a great outfit. Especially if that outfit can be put with a pair of cute yet comfortable shoes! (I would live in flip flops year round if I could, but GA temps don't allow me to do that! I will have to do a post on some of my great clothing deals sometime soon!)
Which brings me to the first comic in Sunday's paper.(In case you can't read it, it says... girl on left: "So your bedroom is now your closet and your closet is now your bedroom." girl on right: "I finally got my priorities straight!")
I want to get it framed!!
After the exhibit Kels and I ran to IKEA (looking for a dresser-saw some fun stuff, but nothing I had to come home with) and the grocery store (where Breyers ice cream was on sale!!) and then back home to watch the Super Bowl with our guys. When we got home we found them working on Travis' car, and then when we got back from picking up the pizza they were playing a video game...I guess the game wasn't on the top of their list either, but by the final quarter we were in to it and really watching the game. (I will admit I liked this Doritos commercial. My sister & my hubby thought it was lame, but Travis and I were laughing!) I was cheering for the Colts, since I was born in Indy, but since I don't really watch football I was still able to be happy for the Saints when they won! (I was sad for the Colts, but that is just because I don't like to see anybody lose!)
Here are a few great giveaways I found in blogland. (I found them through this fellow blogger actually)
I thought I would pass on the info for you, just in case you wanted a chance at winning them yourself....or if you aren't interested you could sign up for it anyhow and then give it to me if you win!! Sounds like a good plan to me!!
Also Bev at 44th Street Fabric is giving about some fabulous Blush fabric! Be sure to go check out her blog here to see how to enter. It is one you have to go to the 44th Street Fabric Etsy shop and play along to win!
Rebekah at Don't Call Me Becky is giving away some fat quarters of vintage sheets. Click here to sign up for that one...she will draw the winner at 4 tomorrow-so get on over there fast!!
Since I have become obsessed with WAY TOO MANY things lately, I decided I really did need to get a library card and try to save some money there. (Both Kevin and I spend a TON of money on books-so at least it isn't just my fault that our house is full of books!!)
Anyhow, Saturday morning I set out with the coordinates logged into my phone so I could find our local Library and see what goodness I could bring home with me!
Turns out it was a quick trip to a tiny little building right down the road from our house.
I did bring 4 books home with me, (and bought this one for 10 cents!!) but I think that was pretty much EVERY book there that I would even be interested in reading. So when these are due back on the 20th, I will have to find out if they can get books from other libraries, or else this will be a one time deal!
I read Kate's Choice Saturday night after getting back from Sips n Strokes, and I have now started Eliza's Daughter. I like it so far, but I am only 2 chapters in so that isn't saying much!
I forgot to post a picture of this earlier this week as well. I made another little scarf out of the extra pink and green yarn! (This one is tiny-skinny and not very long-would be a good child's size scarf I think!)
After going home early from work with a major headache I got in a good nap and finally watched Australia. (I have been meaning to watch it for forever, I was crying like a baby at some parts-such a sweet movie!) Kev had a friend over to play video games on Friday night so I went out to run a few errands (I should have cleaned the house...but I still wasn't feeling great, and that didn't sound like fun-however that means it never got done, because the rest of my weekend was filled to the brim and overflowing!)
I ended up coming home with a bit of fabric... some buttons for a project I need to work on... a new book... and I had a little set back in my recovery program from my DVD buying addiction!
Blockbuster was having some great sales on their previously viewed DVD's and I went just a little crazy. (three sets of 3 for $20, a set of 4 for $20, 1 movie that was $1.99 and 2 foreign films at $3.99 each) I have only seen one of these movies (Troop Beverly Hills...memories of a slumber party when I a girl come to mind!) so I am not sure if any of them will be good, but when they aren't much more than renting, how can you say no? I obviously still have a long way to go in this recovery program!! At least I know I have a problem!! However, since I had blown my budget at Blockbuster, I knew I absolutely could not spend more money that weekend...which was a good thing since Sunday I was at a fantastic little quilt shop with some B E A U T I F U L fabrics! So although it wasn't a good thing to have spent so much on movies, I could have done a LOT more damage to my budget in the fabric shop!! (More about that in another post, like yesterday, I think today will be a day of many posts!)
Thursday I had picked up a new TV stand, which Kev and I had picked out when we went shopping the weekend before. It is from here and is perfect for what we needed! (While we were there we fell in love with this, but I would have to completely redecorate the house to match it! It is not at all what we would normally look at!) (Yes, that is the cardboard corner pieces from when it was boxed up-they are gone now, but we had left them on there to make moving it easier!) Our other TV stand will find a new home upstairs...which means I need a different dresser-since mine will be too wide once we get the new stand upstairs. Does anybody know of a good place to buy a cheap but nice chest of drawers?
Friday night I also worked a bit more on the batik quilt I am making for Marmee.I am still LOVING it! (Even though I had to pick apart a few of the blocks-several times-before I got it right!!)
*Edited version-see below* One of the fun things I did over the weekend was go to Sips n Strokes with Mandy!
We had so much fun! (I had done this back in May of last year for my sister'sbirthdayand loved it, so I was really looking forward to this, and it did not disappoint!)
Last time we were just doing a very contemporary-simple funky or crazy flowers (something like that) and it was not really something you would consider a real work of art, but was fun to do and I am planning on getting it framed an hung up eventually just because I can-if it is in a frame it will seem more important right!?! This time we were doing Almond Branch-a Van Gogh! A little more pressure people!!
You can see Mandy's amazing work of art here. Seriously-she is so talented, I love hers!
Mine looks a bit more Monet-like. Meaning, when you look at the style of the piece it looks like he was my inspiration, not Van Gogh. (and I am not saying it looks anything like Monet would have painted, I would truly be living in a delusion if I thought that for even a millisecond!!)
OK so on with the pictures: In three hours (well, a little under 3 hours actually because we got started late, it was a completely full class!!) we painted these works of art!!
Our back grounds:
I am such a messy painterOur blossoms:
(I seriously stink at blossoms-so I just put as few of them as possible-maybe someday I will go back and fix this so it doesn't look like I painted this when I was 4 and in my preschool art class, but until then, I will frame it and hang it in my house with pride!!) *Edited note* **This totally reminds me of when I was a girl (about 6-7) and had entered a coloring contest at a local grocery store. We were coloring a Christmas tree page for some prize (I want to say it was a motorized car, or something like that-something we couldn't even dream of getting ourselves!) One day, after bringing home the treasured papers with the tree on it that we needed to color and turn in, Mom and Betsy came to me excited about a "good idea." Why don't I color presents onto my page to make it unique and to stand out from all the others! I ran excitedly to the table to take on that challenge, only to find that the reason why they had suggested that was because Kels (who would have been 2-3 at the time) had colored on my page-making these large oddly shaped boxes. I was furious! Both at Kelsey, for coloring on my precious coloring page, (which I was determined I was going to win the contest) and Mom and B for trying to trick me into being fine with the horrible multi-colored mess that had been scribbled on my masterpiece! -The difference between then and now, is that it is only my own fault for ruining my tree painting with the blossoms. I should have known to stop while it still looked at least decent instead of trying to copy that Van Gogh masterpiece by adding the blossoms. I guess I could blame the teacher-how could she suggest such a thing to me-untalented, untrained artist that I am, and expect me to leave with a finished product that I could proudly hang on the wall. But, the truth is, although it is far from great, and my blossoms truly are frightening, I still love it! I know I am not a master, but I am happy with what I was able to do, and I had a great time doing it! (At least I didn't give-up 2/3rds of the way through like one girl did and paint over my work of art with a giant yellow smiley face!) BTW, the little girl who won the prize from the grocery store...I am pretty sure there is no way she could have colored her page on her own, so I guess I was doomed either way.**
Finished products:(I am not really sure what was up with my hair that day-Oh yeah, it would be that I don't care, so I had just pulled it back with some pins after I got out of the shower that morning, and this was what it looked like by 10 o'clock that night...scary!!)