Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Busy Season!

Attic Gal Rachelle says:

If all you Attic Diggers are feeling a bit neglected I apologize. I have been busy with a million things, not the least of which is my new photography business, Attic Window Photography. 'Tis the season for family photos. Come by my blog, The Attic Window, to see what I've been up to. And you can even view pics of our own Attic Gal Alysa's own beautiful family HERE.

And I am also currently in the thick of recreating THIS - a magical Christmas wonderland. I have a made a few changes to my holiday decor since last year and will post those later, but if you haven't seen my place, or want to be reminded of what a decorating madwoman I am, check this out.

I am also getting ready for my annual ornament party this Friday night, and all my dearest friends are frantically making their ornaments. (No, I have not made mine yet, which is sort of a tradition of mine.) Here is last year's. The theme this year is "All Creatures Great and Small" and I can't wait to see what clever little critters these gals come up with!

Yet as madly busy as I am, I am also giddy with delight that the holiday season is upon us once again. Granted, I am way, way behind where I should be at this point, but for some reason, this year I am just too excited about Christmas to care.

Happy Busy Season everyone! May it be as busy and as joyous as ever!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Autumn Splendor!

Here in the desert where I live, fall is a beautiful season - not because it is filled with autumn colors, (the leaves never do turn here), but because fall means that the long hot summer is finally over. The days have just a touch of cool and the nights are heavenly. Everything is green and the flowers bloom gloriously. Yes, fall in the desert is beautiful - it just isn't very fall-like, which means that if you want fall color you have to do it yourself. So that is just what I did - I brought a bit of autumn splendor right into my home, starting with a pile of pumpkins (real and otherwise) in and around an urn by my front door.

I got this idea from my brilliant friend Jenny. Although the stacked pumpkins and raven are leftovers from Halloween, they have lost all traces of spookiness towering in a large urn. The orange satin bow gives the bird some autumn sophistication as he greets visitors.

For my fall decor, I am going for glitz. A glittery banner and shimmering pumpkins sparkle among piles of raffia and dry fall leaves. Christ remains the centerpiece as Him from whom all blessings flow.

I framed an old greeting card featuring Peter, Peter Pumpkin Eater and his wife's new living quarters.

In the living room a leaf made out of twigs and a pair of mini wreaths hang from the screen with the same luxurious satin ribbon.

More glitz in the dining room where the table is strewn with more fall foliage, satin ribbon, and the fruits of the season, a few of which I have sprayed a brilliant shiny gold for a festive punch. But the centerpieces of the arrangement are several turkeys that I have also sprayed gold - my pride a joy! (Thanks for that idea, Martha Stewart!)

Also, from my Christmas decor, 2 pairs of mercury glass candlesticks are made fit for fall by topping them with a pair of mini pumpkins.

A pair of beaded wreaths hang from the china cabinet by the same satin ribbon, and the rest of the ribbon is generously puddled around the base of several apothecary jars.

A couple of leafy garlands lie on top of the china cabinet and the clock in the room facing it for another punch of orange and red.

The jars serve as a modern cornucopia, each displaying a different fall bounty: glitzy beaded acorns, stacks of mini squash, ears of colorful Indian corn, and tufts of wheat, a few of which have been sprayed gold. A tiny mercury glass bird watched over it all.

Glitz and glimmer, a generous amount of pumpkin pie colored satin ribbon, and a couple of cans of shiny gold spray paint all combine to bring some fall splendor into our home.

May a spirit of gratitude and thanksgiving fill you heart this beautiful season!

Tidy Mom I'm Lovin It Fridays

Monday, November 1, 2010

Thankful Tree

We are starting a "Thankful Tree" tonight. How perfect is it that November 1 falls on Monday night which is Family Night for our family? We have our activity and lesson done with this project.

Back during the first week of October, my sister was in town and she was purchasing a bunch of fake leaves from the Target $1 bin. I asked her what she was doing and she was planning to make a Thankful Tree for her early morning seminary students. So I quickly snatched up a bunch myself. (BTW, seminary is an early morning religious class that high schoolers take prior to their day starting at school -- ask Rachelle more about it. She's now a 6:15 a.m. teacher.)

I've seen this idea out on the internet: small ones that are just on paper that are on the refrigerator, paper feathers for a turkey paper turkey, etc. We've tried a bunch but I wanted to make it bigger and more accomadating for our family of seven. Plus adding it to the main room of our house will be a great reminder to me and hopefully others that we have much to be grateful for in our lives. Here is one that just, thankfully, reminded me that I wanted to do this.

I'll show you tonight after we make it. Just wanted to give you the idea so if you wanted to do it too.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

AtticGal Rachelle says:

Happy Halloween everybody! Hope it is dreadful!

Come check out my creepy photos of gargoyles and tombstones on my photo blog, The Attic Window, to get you into that gloomy Halloween spirit!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

The Attic has a New Window!

Attic Gal Rachelle says:

I have finally done it! I have opened a window in this dusty old attic to let a little light in.

My photography hobby has bloomed into a full blown passion, and so my new photography business, Attic Window Photography, and its accompanying blog, The Attic Window, were the next step. I am finally ready! Yippee!

The Attic Window

Come on by for a visit and just click on my various albums on the right side. I hope you enjoy the view from my Attic Window!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Witch's Lair Dead Ahead!

Attic Gal Rachelle says:

I was feeling WITCHY, so I decided to pull out my Halloween decor and create my witches' lair. Now I am feeling much more comfortable.

Come inside... if you dare.

Near the front is our family graveyard with bones strewn among the headstones. Inside the gate is a stack of pumpkins and a recent addition, a smoldering cauldron that my kids can't get enough of.

Another new addition to the family, a wayward witch who landed head-first in an urn. My kids saw the idea in a magazine, and begged me to copy it. I already had the witch socks. The legs were just poles wrapped with bath towels. I found the shoes at a garage sale. The were black suede, but the soles were light, so I spray painted them with a shimmering metallic black paint. Perfect! I think they are hilarious.

A chair on the front porch invites guests to have a seat that is already occupied by a pumpkin, a crow, and a tangle of barbed wire. Very welcoming, don't you think?

A friendly spider meets you in the entryway.

The sentimental witch has a wall with photos of all of her long departed family members.

On the opposite wall is the witches' mudroom where she can hang up her cape and broom after a long night in flight. Above it are silhouettes of her and her sisters, Hilda and Hazel. Lovely.

I simply spray painted some old oval frames and freehanded some witch silhouettes on black paper and cut them out.

A banner announces "Spooky" as if you didn't know already.

After my ascension to the top of Notre Dame, I have a new-found love for gargoyles. Such cuddle creatures. They watch over my witches lair, but these ones keep the evil spirits in, not out. Nestled among them are black and white photos I took in an ancient cemetery in France. I put the in the silver frames that hold my family pictures the rest of the year.

Also to greet you in the entryway is my favorite headless hanging friend draped in strips of cloth. Out of the corner of my eye I keep thinking someone is standing there. When i found her at a garage sale, I knew she would be perfect for Halloween.

Also in the hallway are a pair of ravens. We painted an old birdcage black and made one of them his own little flag. Quoth the Raven: "NEVERMORE'." Caw, caw, caw.

On the dining room table, a witch has been concocting her powerful potions and secret serums

while a few of her feathered and furry friend look on from above. One of my kids put them there to be funny, but I think the black creatures look great against the stark red and white, so they are staying (at least for the rest of the month. They will be gone by Christmas, I promise.)

I am a big fan of the holey gauze drape cloths that you can hang on everything to make it all super creepy. Something is too cheery to fit into the spooky theme? Just drape it is this stuff. Done. Instant creeps!

And it also helps to have a whole bunch of little grey mice running around the dining room table...

and some big fat cockroaches, of course. And every witch needs a skull with ruby eyes (the rubies were an addition for my twins' Indiana Jones birthday party a few years back. Now I can't imagine him without them.)

The living room doubles as the witches' study. She is quite cultured and has the masterpiece The Moaning Lisa.

The witch's spell library and the candelabra she uses to read them by.

More gauze cloths on the curtains. And the witch's black cat sit atop a stack of old luggage anxious for a trip to Salem. Wonder how she gets that luggage on the broom anyway?

So that is the witch's lair. I think I say this every holiday, but decorating for Halloween is my favorite - at least it is the most fun (plus, you don't have to dust for a whole month!) It really gives me the chance to get creative and silly, and tap into my dark side. (insert cackling high-pitched evil laugh here.)

Tidy Mom I'm Lovin It Fridays

Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special

Friday, October 8, 2010


Attic Gal Rachelle says:

I love old stuff, as you know, and when I find something old and cool at a garage sale I have to snap it up and then think of something cool to do with it. Well, while back I came across a box of electrical insulators and I looked at them until I became inspired. They looked like ghosts, so that is what the became. Isn't he cute?

Then, once my imagination was chugging along, the green insulators looked like Frankensteins to me. It took a bit more artistry, but the results are darling. The bolts are actually silver pushpins with the pins removed. (A stroke of genius, I know!)

Another version. Not sure which I like better.

I also took an old rolling pin with black handles and wrapped it with strips of muslin to make a mummy. The eyes are just tucked in and glued and the arms are just a single strip of muslin with a knot tied in the middle. I gave him a pumpkin to hold, and a little spider to keep him company. So easy. So cute.

I love my mummy.

What spooky creatures can you make out of the old stuff you have?

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Homey Goodness

I think most people really enjoy the feeling that the fall brings. I know I do. It is so nice to see the weather change (for us it is from 120 to maybe 110). Although our weather doesn't change that much and we are still swimming in the pool from time to time, I still love the decorating, the food, the ambiance that fall brings.

Yesterday I came across this:
It's at the Clean Mama blog. What a super idea! There is even a whole check-list of things to do this month that give you the "feel" of the fall - make something with apples, make a stew or soup, figure out a better way to do laundry, etc... I think I'll follow along and see what happens in my own life (and hopefully posting on this blog) this month.

Have a Homey Goodness Month!