Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Last Pink Wednesday for 2008!

Wow. What a year, huh? I, for one, am glad to be leaving this past year in the dust. To say this past year was a year of challenges, is putting it lightly. Remember the bear?!! The REAL bear!! Who would have thought? It seems like just a bad dream now. However, we got through it and we have such delightful things and wonderous blessings to look forward to in the New Year!

I'm leaving this last Pink Wednesday of 2008 with a photo I took of a rose on the property at Mt. Pleasant. Bittersweet, it reminds me of all of the truly fabulous people I had a chance to meet while we were there. What a blessing!

I believe everything happens for a reason, and that each step we take, is a step we're meant to take. We learned some hard lessons. We also came away with the knowledge that we are, indeed, much stronger than we think and that family will always be there when we need them.

Another lesson learned? I really missed designing and creating my bears!! I'm back on track now though and will be introducing new bears again very soon. Yay!!

Warmest Pink Wednesday wishes and bear hugs, Aleta

Monday, December 29, 2008

A celebration....finally!

This is how we all felt about the snow getting in the way of our Christmas celebration.
This is how happy we are that the snow is almost melted and we are finally able to get together!! (Justin, Brittany and hubby, Jeremy.)

Even though our gift giving and dinner celebration was delayed, it gave us an even greater appreciation for being able to get together as a family.

Onward and upward now!! It's almost time to ring in a New Year!! Yay!!

Warmest and biggest bear hugs, Aleta

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you the Merriest of Christmases and a joy filled New Year!
Blessings and warm bear hugs, Aleta

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Pink Wednesday Wishes and Dear Santa.

Wishing you everything Merry and Bright!

Warmest Merry Christmas Bear Hugs, Aleta

P.S. Here is my dear Santa letter. Hopefully Santa will find it. I wasn't able to get to Macy's to put it in the box and the postman hasn't been here in three days.

Dear Santa,
Do you think you could have a talk with Mother Nature to see if she wouldn't mind turning off the snow and turning the heat back on over the Pacific Northwest? The snow has been very pretty. I think I like a green Christmas much better though, thank you.

Yours very truly, Aleta

Monday, December 22, 2008

STOP snowing already!!

First, we had nine inches of snow.
Then we had an ice storm that dropped a half an inch of a lovely ice coating over everything.

This is what I woke up to this morning. UGH!! Stop snowing already!! Now, at 9:40 it has dropped another three inches and it's still coming down. You can no longer see the brick line around the pool or see the rock retaining wall. Everything is being enveloped by snow.
Okay, who was it that put snow on their Christmas list?!!
Been stranded for nine days. NINE DAYS!! We tried to get out once only to be crashed into by a Hummer a mile from our house. A Hummer!! And I don't mean a hummingbird!! I thank God we were in Bill's big box truck. Significant damage to both vehicles....especially the Hummer!....but everyone is okay and that's the important thing. :o)
The sad thing is, we won't have our children with us for Christmas because, even living in the lower elevations, they can't get around in the snow either. They have even more that we do! At the rate it's snowing, we might not even see them until New Years!! Oh, how I detest snow!! It's not supposed to snow this much in Portland. Usually when we do get snow, it's just a day or two of misery and then it all melts away. I'm staring squarely at being stranded two weeks before it warms up enough to melt!!
The bright side in all this? I'm getting bears made!! :o)
Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Pink Rosettes or Green Frogs?

The bunnies in the nursery have been waiting very patiently to find out if they stay or if they move into the pink guestroom.

Would I have to take the pink rosettes off the curtains and attach little green frogs? Would the room be filled with big splashes of blue or stay with splashes of pink? Oh, the waiting to find out!!!
Everyone was taking guesses whether Brittany was having a boy or a girl. I kept my guess a secret. I would look at boy things and girl things and listen to and make comments on choices for both gender names. I have to say though, the crib I picked out might have been the tiniest hint as to my guess. I played it off though saying that a grandson wouldn't look over the edge of the crib and tell me, "Nana, this is a sissy bed!" Most everything in my house has fancy detail. My crib. My house. My choice. Nana's can do that you know. ;o)
So, when the day came for the sonogram I was on pins and needles. When I answered the phone the first thing out of my mouth was, "Is it a boy or a girl?!!" Brittany, the sweet stinker that she is, wouldn't tell me unless I told her what my guess was. I told here I thought it was a girl. Then she asked what Bill's guess was. He was guessing a boy. "Okay, okay! Which is it?" I asked.
It's a girl!! A sweet little princess we are all just soooo excited to meet. She's set to make her debut May 5th. I suspect she'll arrive in April just like her sweet stinker of a mom. We'll see! In the meantime, the bunnies will remain in the nursery as will the pink rosettes on the curtains. We'll save the green froggy's for the next arrival. ;o)
There is so much to be done. The crib will arrive in January. Oh my! That's right around the corner!! The time will arrive in just a blink!! And, Brittany and Jeremy's nursery needs to be ready too!! So much to look forward to in the New Year!! And, so many pictures to take of the progress!!
Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Happy Pink Wednesday!!

The snow still has me housebound. It's okay though.....look at what I'm accomplishing!! Yay!! I've actually finished two little bears already but one had to go in the mail yesterday so I didn't have time to photograph him before the postman came. I've also started on a bigger bear!! The project for the day however, is to work on the dolls I started a couple of months ago. They're both snow ladies ( how appropriate, huh?!!) that I'd intended to have finished and ready for sale at Monticello's Holiday Faire. I'll just finish them anyway.....and keep 'em until next year!!

Tomorrow I'll share pictures of another project I finished using bottle brush trees, blocks and my vintage/antique glass baubles!! Ho ho ho! That's a wee hint of what's to come!

Warmest Pink Wednesday bear hugs, Aleta

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The weather outside is frightful!

This is the start of the third day stranded because of the snow and ice. It's supposed to snow more tomorrow and even more this weekend. (sigh) It's only 12 degrees this morning and the wind is still blowing. Brrrrrr.

For many parts of the country snow is no big deal. They're prepared for it. For Pacific Northwest cities, having a green (as in green grass and bare roads) holiday is the norm. Snow is not normal here. When it snows here, people lose all sensibility. They venture out in their cars and end up skating across freeways and highways playing bumper cars along the way. What on earth makes normally sane people get in cars worth thousands and thousands of dollars and venture out, only to end up as ornamentation around a light pole? I just don't get it!

Anyway, so I'm stranded. Stranded with Bill. He's in the office all day fielding phone calls from people wanting fireplaces installed and working on paperwork. In the office. In the office where the computer is. Bummer. No blog or chat time for me these past few days. I've been getting a lot of projects done though!! More on all that tomorrow.....I've commandeered the computer!! Ha!! Early mornings anyway!

Warmest bear hugs from the East Hills of Portland, Oregon! :o) Aleta

P.S. I'm dreaming of a GREEEEEN Christmas. Just like the one's I used to know. Where the treetops listen and children glisten, from rain, raindrops cold and wet...... :o)!!!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Missed again!

Another Pink Wednesday on Thursday. (sigh) Soo many things going on in my world outside of Bloglandia. Not to mention it being the holiday season. It's a crazy busy time! My mom is coming to visit and it's Bill's 50th birthday this weekend as well!! My cup runneth over! Whew!

I've been holding this picture for some time waiting for Monica to get her website up and going but I just can't wait any longer for you to see the beauty in this gift. It's a handpainted (by Monica herself!) heart box. So beautiful and such a surprise to receive. For moi? You simply cannot know what a surprise this was.... Thank you so very much, dear Monica. It makes me smile every day to see it on my desk. It holds the little bear tags that are sewn onto the backs of wee bears. Beautiful and functional!! Love, love, love it!!

Monica has a blog now so be sure to peek in. It's a beautiful blog chock full of lovely pictures from her home in Italy. Oh, and soon she'll have her website up and she'll be selling beautiful handpainted things and other assorted lovelies!! I can't wait!! Hurry, hurry Monica!!

Happy Thursday!! Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Thursday, December 4, 2008

The show and sale starts tomorrow!

The Old Fashioned Christmas Show and Storewide Sales Event starts tomorrow at 8am!! The Christmas show will remain in the atrium all month long but the storewide sale is only three days: Friday the 5th through Sunday the 7th of December. Happy shopping!
Annie, Fannie and Abigail

Magpie Ethel

Colby Cottage

Vintage Trifles and Molly Mo's

My Shabby Roses

Most of these vendors have blogs so I'll try to get all the links straight so you can pop in for a visit. Mind you, this is not all of the vendors participating in this event. Some booths were not finished, had worker bees present or my picture ended up blurry. It's a royal bummer when the latter happens. :o(
I have to say though, this is the finest group of vendors for a Christmas event at Monticello. It totally ROCKS with a wide range of holiday (and everyday) appeal. See you there!!!
Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

A tiny peek!

Yup. Missed another Pink Wednesday. But! space is almost ready for the Old Fashioned Christmas Show and Sale at Monticello!! Yay!! Just a bit of pricing and the addition of a couple of my bears and I'm all set. Whew. This chickiedoodle needs a vacation!!

I'm going to try to pop back in later this evening to post more pictures of all the great booth spaces. Oh my goodness!! There are goodies galore!! It will be hard to keep a reign in on the pocketbook this year!! Whoohoo!!

Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Sunday, November 30, 2008

All is calm.

The house seems so incredibly quiet. All of our family is on their way back to their homes in Alaska and Boston, Mass. I can hear cat paws walking across the carpet again...... Though it makes me smile to hear them, I'm sad at the same time. You know what I mean?

Warmest Sunday bear hugs, Aleta

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanksgiving and family.

Happy, happy Thanksgiving!! May yours be blessed and bright and filled with love, happiness and laughter.

We have a merry, merry house full with family visiting from Alaska and Boston! It's a crazy busy time (with fifteen for dinner this evening!), and just the BEST to be surrounded with those we love and have missed spending family holiday time with all these years. I'll pop back in on Sunday.....hopefully with some pictures!!

Until then.....Warmest and biggest bear hugs, Aleta

Monday, November 24, 2008

Merry and White!

I'm going with the "less is more" way of thinking this year. Because I'm not able to drape the tree in glass Christmas garland this year (not a safe thing for me to be twisting and turning on a seven foot ladder trying to get it "just so") I decided to forget the glass garland and go simple. This year, simple is good. It's white and tarnished silver, feather birds and glittery snowballs. Still festive, just quiet and more relaxed. It's exactly what I needed to slow things down a bit.

Now mind you, I didn't run out and buy all new ornaments. Nope, nope, nope. I actually bought them a couple of years ago for a New Years party. That year, the day after Christmas, I took all of our traditional ornaments off the tree and replaced them with a white glittery snow theme. Crazy perhaps, but I knew we would have guests at the party that don't do Christmas and I wanted them to feel welcome in our home. Taking the entire tree down wasn't an option with Bill's schedule so I had to improvise. The really great thing here is that this year I was able to use the decorations again!!

This year I even included an element of surprise on our tree.....I've hung my collection of silver baby cups from the branches!! They look so sweet and are a nod to the impending birth of our first grandchild. (insert a happy smiley sigh here) Life is grand! :o)

Before I close, I want to say thank you for all the well wishes posted both publicly and privately. Time, patience and physical therapy.....oh!, and ice three times a day!! I am beginning to see improvement!! Yay!! Though the road may be long, I'll get there!!

Merry Merry and warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Missed another one!

Yup, missed another Pink Wednesday. (sigh) I suppose it's time I explain. If you follow my blog, you probably realize I am always juggling many projects at one time. It's never been a problem until recently. I've had some health issues I've been ignoring. Little tip here: Willing it to go away, doesn't make it go away. It only makes matters worse. Lest you think that something horrific has hasn't. I'm under a doctors care and I'm going to physical therapy three times a week. I do, however, have to slow down.

That's what my little rant was about a week or so ago. DARN IT, I don't want to slow down!! I know now that I have to. Otherwise, I may end up with even more nerve damage, or even worse, require surgery. Which, in turn, would mean an absolute cessation of activity for many weeks. That rant was my cock-eyed way of telling my family I needed help and not to expect so much of me while they're here on holiday. For once, I have to put myself first. It's not something I'm used to doing. Nor is it something my family is used to.

In the meantime, I made a commitment to Monticello for their holiday faire back in August. (Long before I knew I would have so many coming for Thanksgiving.....or that I would be facing worsening physical issues.) The time I feel at my best, I use to work on things for that event rather than spending time on the computer. Little by little, the rest of the time is spent getting the house ready for family to arrive. Anyway, now you know the reason for a belated Pink Wednesday here and there....or missing it altogether. ;o)

Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

P.S. That's a Japanese Aralia bloom that hasn't opened, huh? Nature supplies the most amazing pictures to capture!!

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Blessings to you this Sunday. Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Pink Wednesday on Wednesday!

Hey! A Pink Wednesday post actually posted on a Wednesday! And, the subject is actually pink! Wahoo! ;o)

Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Thursday, November 6, 2008

From reference books and old photos!

I know. I missed Pink Wednesday. Sorry. Too many projects! No, wait. Not enough hours in the day!! Um-huh. That's it!! Not enough hours in the day. ;o)

Here are a couple of the projects I've been working on. These are part of my white, silver and gold theme. I was inspired by a picture in one of my Christmas books, one full of antique Christmas ornaments, to make the heart with the center bauble. I love the old ornaments with the tinsel! Though the tinsel is new on this ornament, the glass ball is actually an oldie.

The idea for the gift box came from the picture of the little girl herself. She's all dressed up for winter in her mohair coat and hat. Perfect for a little snow scene! This is actually the prototype. I wasn't completely happy with the ice cream cone look of the snow pile so I had to squish, squish, squish the form down until I got it right. I added bits of old pipe cleaner around the bottom of her coat and around the ruff of her hat giving her more of a dimensional effect. Vintage sheet music, antique tinsel, old chenille pipe cleaner, dresden wings and glitter!! Love, love, love it!!

Happy Thursday!!

Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Monday, November 3, 2008 are about to enter a little rant.

They don't take me seriously. My sister and sister-in-law. I told them I was going to hand them paper, scissors and glue and that they would have to work for Thanksgiving dinner. If they are going to come visit for a week and expect me to drop everything because they are on holiday, I must insist that they do something for me. Afterall, it's not MY holiday.

I still have to work. I still have to be ready and set up for the Holiday Faire at Monticello the day after they leave. That means I have three weeks. Three weeks to get all my projects done, get all the guestrooms ready and have all the holiday decorating done. Whoa, Nellie! Only three weeks? Yikes!!

You're on notice, in writing right here, Michelle and Kimberly! If my projects aren't done, it's paper, scissors and glue for you!! Ha!! Oh, and another thing, I'm not the group leader on this trip. DO NOT ask me, "What do you have planned for us today?" If I hear this, you will get the stink eye and be made to sit in the corner with your nose pressed against the wall.

Little rant over. I'm off to the studio to sew up some bears!!

Warmest bear hugs on a delightful Monday morning! :o) Aleta

Friday, October 31, 2008

Wishing you only the sweetest treats this Halloween day!
Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Paper, scissors & glitter!

A delightful Pink Wednesday to you!! You can see I'm up to my eyeballs in paper, glitter, glue and tinsel. Oh, the goodies I've been having fun creating!! There are gift boxes and cones with little bears tucked inside and pretty ornaments to hang on the tree!

Next on the list? French linen monogrammed pillows, stockings and sweet little charms. Not a lot of the latter....just a few, because I bought all the stuff and I really need to use it up. ha! Let's see....what else? I have a whole list in the studio and I'm crossing things off as I go. wheeee!!

Warmest glitter covered bear hugs, Aleta

Monday, October 27, 2008

Autumn color and four legged guests!

These three deer were out for a Saturday morning stroll around the neighborhood. We've had an unusually large population of deer around here this year. The other night we were surprised to find five deer standing in our driveway staring back at us as we returned from dinner. That was a fine how-do-you-do!

Oh, the glorious colors of autumn!! Love it!!

Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Trick or Treat?

Just listed on my website, two of my Truly Silly! line of bears....Trick and Treat. A Halloween Hat and my Mixed Media Art Bear was listed as well. Happy peeking!!

Oh, and did I mention FREE shipping?!! It's my little treat in case something tickles your fancy. ;o)

Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Pink, White and a booth makeover!

Not so much pink today.....we're going with a White Wednesday this week! An old creamy white rose and a silk society doily beautifully stitched with faded violets. I have a few pieces of this kind of handwork. It's getting harder and harder to find examples in pristine condition. Even pieces with moth bites are quite beautiful to me. The silk threads have such a graceful sheen. You know what I mean? Perhaps you do if you've seen some of these incredible linens before. I'll be looking for this type of linen this weekend at Expo!!

Yes, it's that time of year....The Portland Antique Expo is this weekend!! Yay!! 1350 booths to browse!! We'll go on Sunday this year instead of Saturday. I'm just not into crowds lately and besides, I have a gazillion things to do before then anyway. I have to take advantage of the nice weather we're having and get some of the gardens put to bed before the rain comes and sets up camp for winter. ;o)

Bill and I did a complete redo on our space at Monticello yesterday. Spent the afternoon taking everything out except the windows and then put in a fabulous old pie safe (original shabby chippy paint!), a cuter than cute old square pie table (I really struggled with letting go of this piece. It has a most beautiful warm patina!), and last but not least, a sweetly primitive beadboard cabinet. The whole look is kind of shabby prarie with a good dose of ironstone white and tarnished silver. Lived in and warm!!
I can see someone coming in and buying all three pieces for their bungalow or cottage. Really! I'm actually envisioning this happening in a most positive way so that these pieces don't end up back in our garage after the holidays! Ha!
Okay then. On with the rest of the week! The Halloween bears are listing tomorrow. I know.....I'm a little late with that. Two Truly Silly! bears and one of my paper hats....and, FREE shipping on the lot. Well, there you go! I've gone completely over the edge!! ha!

Happy Pink, or White, as is the case this week, Wednesday!! Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Monday, October 20, 2008

The winning draw is....

The winning name for my Pink Wednesday Holiday Bear is......lulu!!...with her post dated October 16 @1:29pm. :o) Yay!! lulu, please contact me through the profile link so I can get your address.

Thank you all so very much for taking the time to enter!! I appreciate each one of you and know that it takes extra effort to post a little something. So again, thank you.

I'll have another giveaway soon so keep peeking in. It gives me the greatest joy to spread a little bit of happy around. Presents...I love giving away presents!!!

Oh, and I had the nicest time with my mom this weekend and a fabulous time creating art with all the girls in Lisa's art class. What a delightful bunch of women!! I wish I had taken my camera. I wasn't able to finish my art piece but I will soon and then I'll snap a picture for you. I love, love, love the way it's turning out!!

Tomorrow I'm off to Monticello to do a complete booth re-do. Good-bye Halloween and hello to a couple of weeks of Autumn before going full swing into a Festive Holiday theme. Blink, blink and we're there!!

Don't forget to mark your calendars for the Christmas Faire at Monticello on December 5th starting at 8am!! Antiques and handmades and goodies galore!! I'm soooo excited to be a participating vendor this year!!

Gotta dash.....more holiday bears to finish!!

Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Pink Wednesday and a Giveaway!

Oh happy day....a giveaway!! Yessiree, I'm giving away the bear in the cone to the right there. Bear, cone and the vintage goodies inside! It's Pink Wednesday so I thought it would be appropriate to include a sweet little dose of pink. I'm absolutely delighted to give this first of my holiday offerings away to some lucky someone out there in Blogland. All you have to do is leave a message on this post. Pretty simple. :o)

I have a very busy weekend ahead. My mom is coming for a follow-up doctor visit and I'm also taking a class with Lisa Kaus on Saturday. Unfortunately, I will miss the last Barn House event of the year. Boo hoo. I was lucky enough, however, to get a little sneaky peek last night and I have to say, if you haven't been to any of Joe and Jermonne's events try to make it to this last one. You will not be disappointed!! Jump on over to their blog for details.

Okay. That's all. Make it a fabulous weekend! Don't forget to leave a post to get in on the giveaway! I'll draw a name on Monday morning. Best wishes and warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Monday, October 13, 2008

Weekend treasures and an upcoming giveaway!!

After a couple of weekends of not finding any treasures to speak of, this weekend made up for it in spades! Bill and I make a day of treasure hunting....usually Saturdays. Many estate sales start on Friday and discount on Saturday. I'm not into the Friday starts. You would not believe all the pushing, grabbing and rude dealers there are at the Friday sales. It's also kind of claustrophobic and sometimes kind of smelly not my cup of tea. I'll wait for Saturday or Sunday thank you very much. Sure, I have to go through the leftovers, but, it's at my leisure and I can examine the merchandise and be thoughtful about my purchases.

My prize pieces this weekend are a 1930's composition Santa, a 1911 teddy bear and a pair of Baby Dear ballerina slippers. These are all keepers!!
Oh, and look at these sweet little shoes! I can never pass up mother made baby shoes. They're just loaded with detail and charm. I also found a darling little pair of crochet shoes and two whisper soft cotton baby dresses. All bound for lucky little bears no doubt!
This ironstone pitcher has the original store sticker on the bottom. Meier and Frank, $5.49.....marked down to 2.99. Have you priced ironstone pitchers lately? Oiy! They're certainly not $2.99!! I'll let go of another one I have and keep this one. I like the sticker on the bottom. How many crazy people do you know that keep things because they have an original price sticker on the bottom? Ha!
Another, closer picture of the little bear. He came with overalls and this bit of provenance written in fountain pen. "Teddy was Mervin's pet. Xmas 1911 he came to our home. Teddy has seen use." That last sentence made me laugh out loud. :o)

And now information about my little giveaway. I wanted to start my giveaway on my 250th post. That would be this one. But, why be normal? I will start it on my 251st post on Pink Wednesday instead. In true fashion, I'm a bit behind, so my little giveaway project isn't quite finished. Hey, I'm keeping it real here! I think it will be worth the wait though. It will be a sneak peek of my Holiday Faire offerings that will be presented at Monticello on December 5th!! Make sure you peek in on Pink Wednesday!!

Happy, happy Monday to you!! Warmest bear hugs, Aleta

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Pink Wednesday brings a finished project!

Ta Da! I actually finished one of my projects that I started. Whohoo!! Pin a rose on this chicks nose! A mixed media/assemblage and mohair bear inspired by art dolls by Lisa Kaus. These are meant to hang on the wall but they're really great leaners when the legs are splayed out. Hey, I can still sit like that too! If I can do it, the bears can do it without a fuss as well. hee!

I added a twist on Lisa's original idea by using my own mohair bear and limbs instead of porcelain/bisque doll bits. I also used a longer, thinner canvas on this one. I like the longer length but I think I'll try using a thicker canvas or block again next time. Also, there must be a better way to attach the limbs than what I've been doing. Oiy, what a headache!

There are multiple paper layers, charcoal pencil, watercolor pencils, acrylic paints, rubber stamp accents, a bat punch, velvet ric-rac, satin vines, ribbon rosettes with glass bead centers and antique porcelain buttons. It's also coated with a layer of beeswax which gives it an overall soft mellow look. The bear is mohair, has traditional glass eyes, and a thread nose and mouth stitched slightly askew. Bear parts, however, are not coated with a layer of beeswax. Oh, what a mess that would be! ;o)

Okay, so, one project completed. Just in time too.....the paperclay head for one of the dollies is dry. Onwards and upwards!

I haven't yet decided whether I can part with this little bit of Halloween fun though. I'll decide tomorrow. I really should try to make an income this month. I just seem to want to create, create, create....and keep, keep, keep it all!! So very selfish.

Perhaps I should create something for a giveaway!! Now there's an idea! My next post will be my 250th....what a jabberbox, huh? ha! Perfect timing for a giveaway. Hmmmmm.

Warmest Pink Wednesday bear hugs, Aleta