Thursday, December 31, 2009


If you remember my first post, September 16th, this'll remember where we started...

My husband had just broken ground for his new workshop and in December of this SAME year we planned to move his stuff out of the studio into the new space....And, in January 2010, I planned to begin to convert his old workshop (the downstairs portion of my studio) into our new shop, Ranch Dressing.

Well, here is where we are in our progress...

Footings dug only yesterday...

with plans to pour them at 8 am today....

...but, guess what? It rained, AGAIN, last night.

  The good news is...NC is no longer in a drought. We've had rain, rain, rain, a little snow, and more rain.  We are good in that respect. And now we have MUD.

Checkers seems to love it more than I do.

Karat has no problem with it either, but, she prefers to wear it on her rump rather than her face.

 Is this what they are talking about when the "old timers" talk about drinking from a horse track?

I'm about to get sucked under...

 ...I'm okay, but the Ariats are needing serious attention.

Are we discouraged? No, not really. Where there's a will there's a way. Things always work out for the best and May 8th is still far enough off that I think we can still have our first open house then. We are hoping to pour the concrete Saturday. As soon as the building is in the dry we are moving everything out of the old workshop so we can concentrate on Ranch Dressing.

We have been blessed abundantly in 2009 and know that 2010 promises many new friends and wonderful experiences. We are so looking forward to the new year and hope you will continue to follow along with us on our journey.

On Monday, I will announce the first of 12 giveaways  for the year. Until then, I hope that you have a Very Happy New Year!

Monday, December 21, 2009

A Little Nite-time Sparkle

1960's Santa my grandmother made...I've had to add a little cotton over the years but he stand's pretty much as he did when I was a child...which is honestly, a little wobbly.
 It's no secret that I love color....bold color...always have and don't guess I'll ever change. My house is easily decorated at Christmas because of all the red I already have, but I love the way it looks best at night, with only the lights from the trees and the candles in the windows.

My little thrift-store snow village sits atop the player piano in our den. The background is a 1920's velvet painting that came from my great-aunts home after she passed away at the age of 99 a few years ago. 

Tiny little hand made reindeer and a crystal the contrast of materials

 The last three photos are of our little tree and a tiny Santa, but with a little embellishment from photo shop...

Watercolor tree

...and the glowing tree.

 1950's ceramic skiing Santa

Will you miss the ambiance of the lights after the season is long gone? I really do, and will keep out a few window candles through the winter as well as the snow village minus Santa and decorated trees.  

Link your photos, I'd love to see your nite-lites.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

My Favorite Ornaments

 Salt dough cookie cutter ornament made 20 years ago by my one year old and I 

Just a quick little post today about my favorite Christmas tree ornaments. Each year I have intentions of having one of those beautiful trees like you see in magazines and like the ones I did years ago for the Festival of Trees where someone bids on the tree and takes home all the trimmings for the price of a good cause.

...and each year with all my good intentions and new Krebs Bravarian hand blown glass ornaments ready to be displayed...I look at my little hand-made treasures from my grown-up children and know that I can't bear to leave them in the box.

She sings at the top of our tree every year
Toy Soldier Banner
A popular design among teachers...I think we have 4 or 5 of these

I believe this is a framed snowflake

This is quite possibly an original design- at any rate it's a one-of-a-kind

Some that our daughter and I made together are now 20 years old. Others, and most of them, were made by both children in the early years of elementary school. They are beginning to look a little tattered and glues have browned with age, but they make me feel like I still have little kids when I see them on the tree.

 Love, love this one!

...and this one I made.

One day, I will follow through on my grown-up tree, but I imagine I will always have a kid's tree somewhere in the house.  Do you do still put out your children's decorations?

Monday, December 14, 2009

A Bit of History

 September 1987

We are no longer the house without a Christmas tree...last week I made a lot of progress, finishing up art projects for customers, getting things shipped out and lastly, decorating our home...but, I know you are not interested in all that...hopefully you are here because you want to know more about Ranch Dressing and how things are coming along.

Well, things are coming along slowly, but surely. If you are from around here, you know that we've had rain every week for months now. NC is officially out of it's drought. My first post showed a photo of where my husband, Rick will build his new shop so that I can take over his part of the studio for the store. Sadly, nothing has changed yet on that part of our property with the exception of lots of standing water. This week promises more sunshine and come hell or (more) high water, we are digging and pouring footings on Friday. Yay!

I continue to dig around in the container to find new treasures, but I can't pull anything much out yet because of lack of space upstairs in the working studio. I am wrapping things up for the year in the art end of the business and don't plan to take on any large projects until summer...there is a short waiting list forming so if you want a floorcloth by next summer contact me soon to get on the calendar for May.

In the meantime, I dug out some pictures of what it looked like here when we bought the place 22 years ago. I loved the old house that was still standing here and tried to figure out how to use it for a studio but it was just too far gone to save at that point. Because we were young and poor...and had lots of time on our hands...we (mostly Rick) tore it down piece by piece and salvaged what we could...which was not too much...for the new studio.

A couple of the girls that lived here with us for a while

You can see the cows couldn't get in there to keep it cleaned up around the house.

By spring of 1988 we had cleaned up quite a bit.

Fall 1988

Rear veiw of the smoke house and  house

Summer  1990

What a cutie! He still looks about the same with the exception of a few white hairs in his beard.

To be continued....have a great week!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Taking it Slower

My first post since we rolled into December...and here it is the 7th already. My confession for today is that I haven't started decorating for Christmas yet. This, for a designer is probably considered as sin...but, I have reasons.

Today is the first day in over 2 weeks that I haven't felt bad, in fact, today I feel like a million dollars compared to yesterday. I'm finally over the hump and it feels miraculous.

I did what so many other women are guilty of and we need to stop! I ignored red flag after red flag that I was getting sick, but I kept on working to the point that I finally crashed and could not function. By the time I drug myself to my doctor he was ready to put me in the hospital. That scared me to the point of deciding to be a good patient and go home and take my meds and rest...but not without a shot in the hiney to go.

I have much catching up to do this week such as groceries, shopping for the angel tree, some decorating for Christmas here and finishing up an order. Naps will be a priority! I am taking no chances on a relapse!

Take care people! Life is a gift. Health is a priority.

Talk to you soon.