We spent the last week in No. California visiting my family for the holidays.
There was a lot of game playing (Canasta, Boggle, Bananagrams, Tripoly, Skipbo, Yatzee, Scrabble and Cranium), way too much eating (my mom is an amazing cook) and long walks through on winding country roads.
I grew up in Cloverdale (in the Sonoma wine country area) and though the temperature is a little chilly this time of year, there is no snow and the scenery is beautiful and green.
Mike is training for the Paris marathon (on April 5) so he has to do these long runs.
I'm not a runner, but I love to walk so we would go out for a couple of hours in the mornings and enjoy the fresh clean air.
One day, Ski ran with him while the rest of us walked a few miles.
We spent a day over in Mendocino (below Fort Bragg).
Mike loves driving that winding road and we all humor him.
I only shot a handfull of pictures this year and here are a couple of my favorite ones of the boys over in Mendocino.
I love this time of year.
I always get excited about the prospect of a new year and all that I'm going to accomplish during that year.
For the past upteen (translated: many many) years we've given out Lemon Cranberry bread as our neighbor gift.
This year time just didn't seem to be on my side. I don't know if you all felt it, but having Thanksgiving so late in November really messed with my Christmas preparations.
So, when I was at IKEA, I saw this pomegranate apple juice and thought if I changed the label on it to one that was out of my A Little HOliday Magic Kit, it would look pretty cute.
And it did!
I printed out the labels on matte photo paper, cut them with a trimmer, and glued them over the old label. I made a matching tag using the Christmas Delivery Kit and voila! I was done in a jiffy! These are all wrapped up and delivered thanks to my 3 teenage delivery boys.
Friday, Layle came over and helped me style my shelves. She has such an eye for decorating and makes things look really good.
I was hoping today to get labels on all my boxes, binders and magazine holders but it took me way longer than I thought to finish up some projects I was working on so I decided to post these photos anyway, before everything is finished and organized. I know it won't be long before the counters are covered with stuff and the mag strips too.
The walls are orange - the same orange we painted in Mick's room.
The floor is grey and the shelves are maple with chrome brackets.
The mag strips will go all the way above the counter, I just have to buy 3 more to fit.
At the end of the countertop our contractor, Steve, is building me a custom paper cabinet with slots for all my 12x12 papers that will got up to the ceiling.
I have a large window at one end and a small one at the other.
I still have to hang some art on the walls.
I have a white board from Pottery Barn that helps keep me organized.
Under it, I want to find a vintage bookshelf or dental desk like I have in my entry.
Right now I have an old wooden crate on casters that will hold some books and stuff.
To the left of it I think I'm going to put a sofa or daybed.
At the very end of the room on the right will be a sink and more cabinets.
I finally have a place to display my collection of wood stamps. That makes me so HAPPY! I actually have 3 or 4 times this many, but these are my favorites.
And when you consider that just a few months ago it looked like this...I'm think it looks pretty awesome!
Today was my 1st day down in my new studio. It's a little piece of heaven. No...strike that...it's a BIG piece of heaven!
Steve, our fABuLous contractor and husband of my dear friend Susan, spent the day putting up shelves, mag. strips, whiteboards and installing the hardware on my cabinets.
I know I promised a photo but now it's dark and I know that my flash won't do it justice, so you'll have to wait a bit.
Plus I still need to put things up on the shelves. I have 12 roomy maple and chrome shelves from IKEA!
I don't want to make you jealous...so if this is a sensitive area for you, STOP READING RIGHT NOW!
Get this... I have 254 glorious inches of DEEP (29 inches deep) countertop to work on. And the best part...that's only half the room. The other half is empty. I haven't even decided what I'm going to do with it...well, except for a sink and another cabinet.
I'm thinking I need a sofa or a bed because I don't think I'm ever going to want to leave this room. :o)
In the 10 years I've being working at this hobby, the most space I ever had were 2 desks. One for my computer and one to hold all my supplies in with very little space on top to design projects and for 9 years and 8 months of that time that space was in my bedroom.
I used to do all my stamping and painting on my bathroom counter. Not anymore baby!
Last night we had our neighborhood's annual Live Nativity in the glen in our backyard. It is such a classy event, complete with live animals including a camel. My dogs were freaking out when they unloaded the camel from the trailer. They didn't know what it was only that it was big and scary.
It really helps me feel the Christmas spirit...seeing these volunteer actors all dressed up acting out the Christmas story in a truly special setting. If you live anywhere in Utah within an hour or two of Salt Lake you should come next year. It's pretty cool.
So...because I'm so happy, I think it's time to spread that happiness around.