musings, mutterings, and creative muddle. . .

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Orange You Glad???

Knock! Knock!

(You're supposed to say 'Who's There'?)


(Orange Who?)

Orange you glad I didn't say squirrel???

Maybe I did. . .
A picture is worth 1,000 words. . .

Especially if one of the words is 'squirrel'. . .

and another is 'orange'. . .

I have this big ol' walnut tree right outside my Studio window - and the squirrels L-O-V-E it! It helps that I have two squirrel feeders I keep filled with corn and nuts (they don't even mind when I fill it up with walnuts off the ground - LOL!) and another feeder where I put fruit and bread pieces from my kitchen.

This 'feeder' is actually an old metal colander in a metal plant hanger. So fun to watch the squirrels hang on to it. or swing around in it. They also seem to have 'radar' and know precisely when I put any special treats in this hanging feeder.

They especially like oranges. Like this little guy:

Literally, within seconds of putting the cut up orange in the colander there were FIVE squirrels fighting to get the first wedge. Within about a minute, only three squirrels were left. One perched on top of one of the box feeders; another went on up into the tree. And then there was this fuzzy-tailed squirrel.

I especially liked how he used his little handlike-paws to hold and manipulate the orange piece.

Dontcha kind want to make him wash his 'hands'? Sticky sticky!

But he sure is having fun.

And why am I so sure it's a boy-squirrel and not a girl-squirrel.

Kinda nutty. . .

Have an Orange-tastic kind of day -

Robin Z

Friday, June 12, 2015

Mis-Stepping Out

I missed you!!!!!

My last blog entry was three looooong months ago (to the day), mere minutes before The Mis-Step that changed my world, my day to day routine, my life, my attitude, and my ankles. . . . and proved that couches can be important, Warrior Princesses do exist and I have the Very Bestest Hubster in the Universe!!

The story - I slipped on a single solitary step (in my tall home where three flights of stairs live) on my way downstairs to have lunch with Hubster. Neither of us got lunch that day. . . . 

(The scene of The Mis-Step)

That bottom one. . . right there. Dumb *&^%$ step. Thank goodness the landing was there to catch my fall. Or something like that. Hrmph.

Yeah. The story's boring. Sorry. I really should try to come up with something more exciting like sky diving over Niagara Falls, or practicing my tightrope routine across the Grand Canyon, or scaling Mt. Everest in flip flops. But, no. I just slipped. Crashed. Buckled. Folded. . . in my own house. *yawn*

So here's the saga of The Ankles and The Mis-Step. . . And let me just say - the toes are the stars of the show!

March 12:
After the not-so-quick trip to the emergency room. . . . and one broken leg (right above the ankle) and one sprained ankle (go big or go home. . . one good stumble deserves a double. . . .  no jealousy between ankles. . .though the broken one seemed to get all the attention. Better footwear, perhaps?) ice, elevation, pain pills, and a brace. Not necessarily in that order. Welcome to the couch!

March 20:
After surgery on the broken bone I've got a new quite fashionable (humor me, here) knee high boot. I'm being pampered like a princess and may just stay here in the hospital... I mean, pudding at my beck and call?!?!? If only they had cookies - so guess I'll go home tomorrow. 

March 21:

And I did - back to the couch where Hubster helped me stack, fluff, arrange, wad up, and toss around 17 pillows of all shapes and sizes. Warrior Princesses like to be comfy!

March 28:

Bye Bye in the car! Off on an adventure to get . . . . chocolate!!!!!

March 29:

Cold toes and I snuck the ankles outside for a bit of sunshine. 

April 1:
Post-Fleetwood Mac concert. Positively EXHAUSTED! Tickets had been purchased months before the misstep, surgeon and physical therapist said I could go - but to expect to be exhausted. I'd waited 33 years to see Fleetwood Mac. . .had great tickets (Row P, center section, on. the. floor.) and the concert venue did its best to be as accommodating as possible. . . The exhaustion was worth it. Couldn't have made it happen without Hubster - he's Awesome that way.

April 3:

New knee high footwear in *black*! Very stylish with five Velcro straps and extra wide sole. Will be in style for the next month or so - especially fashionable with coordinating crutches! Will be allowed to start walking on it somewhat in a couple weeks.....

April 7:

Me and my ankles cast our vote! Even broken legs are patriotic.

April 10:

Nice to enjoy a cocktail on the back patio (the first since before the accident) - not just because of the wonderfully warm weather, but because of, well. . . . everything else too. CHEERS!

April 24:

Stylin' in my favorite distressed cropped jeans. So much better than stretchy shorts and sweat pants! But do these pants make my ankle look big?

May 1:

Recovery is best with a buddy. . . a furry feline buddy named Frazer.

May 11:

SCORE! Matching footwear. . . I didn't say matching anklewear - I said matching FOOT wear!

May 15:

Bye bye in the car is The Best!!

June 4:

Going bye bye in the myself! Off to the surgeon, 45 minutes away from home, to see what he thinks of my ankles:-) 

Later that same day. . . Doc said it was time to wean off the braces and physical therapy. . . but it was still going to be awhile before I walk without a hobble. Or something like that. Oh. And I have fine bones.

Three months and counting - but I'll be ready to polka soon. Maybe even tango. Heck, I'd be happy to walk through our walnut-strewn yard and the neighbor's gravel driveway without trepidation. Or how about going down steps like a normal person - one foot per step. Without hesitation or white-knuckling the banister. Sigh.

Someday. . . . SOON.

Have a No Mis-Step kind of day -

Robin Z

BTW - You can call me Warrior Princess. I'll let you.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Beautiful Blinged Up Box By YOU!

I. Love. It!!! And I just can't wait one more day to show you the end-results of *our* project. . . . You are all were a part of this creation. . . a sweet little old box now blinged up and holding blingy parts. . . SUPER SWEET!!!

I went with the old rusty water hydrant handle, an over-sized rhinestone (missing one rhinestone, in fact) button up high on the top. . . I think it shows off the curves that the creator cut into the wood nicely. On the front, I wanted to keep it simple to really show off the old wood, chipped paint, and rusty nail heads. I dug around in my parts stash and came up with an old somewhat rusty skeleton key (to my friend who prefers her keys to face downward, I'm truly sorry. It just fit so nicely and framed that front cut out that I couldn't help myself) that fit wonderfully!


And up on the wall with my No. 5 birdie that was a super-special gift from a friend and my two reclaimed wood and metal wall treasures from Rubbish to Rubies.

I LOVE looking over at my Corner Creation Station and seeing the new wall collage. . . Always fun to change things up :-)

But let me back up a bit. . . . It all started with this (plain) sweet box you see below. . .ummmm. . .  well, wait.  It actually started with a trip to an always-full-of-great-treasures show put on my 2 Friends & Junk in Joplin, MO and my affection for wooden boxes - especially wooden toolboxes & small printer boxes (you can check out a few from my ever-growing collection HERE)

THEN I came across *this* box.

This little rough hewn, paint rubbed, obviously handmade and well-loved, but apparently eventually abandoned, box and I *saved* it. But it needed something. . . just a little something. Not a complete work over, but more of embellishments to show off all of its years of being loved and to prepare it for all the years of love to come. And I turned to you for help.  I gave you some options and ideas (you can see the original blog HERE ) and you had opinions. . . I LOVE that!!!!

The more popular bling-ideas that you suggested included these:

Oooh. . . and all VERY good choices indeed. In fact, this last pic inspired me to add a little something to one of my toolboxes that's used to hold 'parts & gadgets' in the studio.

Seems quite fitting considering I'm usually dreaming up something when I head over to dig through the treasures it holds. . .

Thank you, my Favorite bLiNgY Peeps for helping me spruce up not only a sweet little box, but another toolbox AND a corner in the studio. You all are truly inspirational!!

Have a bLiNgEd Up kind of day -

Robin Z

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Nesting with Nests

All the holiday decorations have been packed away for a little while now (no more bright red or pink ornaments and hearts for another year) and there's some time before pulling out the Easter decorations - so what to do in between? Do you have special decorations that aren't part of any holiday? A collection of bottles? Or tin toys? Or????

I have nests.

Why nests? With a name like 'Robin' you either hate it and do your best to avoid it, or you embrace it and run with it. Once I outgrew those school days of nicknames, I learned to embrace my name as a part of my favorite time of the year - Spring.

And I LOVE decorating for the warmer months. I tend to lean toward more muted earthy tones - browns, soft yellow, robin's egg blue (of course) cream, rustic-white. . . bird nests fit into this aesthetic beautifully!

Some of my nests are real, some look real, some are just fun. . . and a few you have to use your imagination!

I wasn't in the mood for candles on the dining room table - so how about 'nest'ling some ceramic birds in those candle rings?

That's one of my favorite things to do - use candle pillars to show off special trinkets - like nests! Rest one on top, or even at the base of one showing off a little bird figurine. How sweet is that?

And what better use for a three-tiered cake/snack plate than to display some fun little glasses and dishes with. . . . nests!

As nests don't weigh but a few ounces and are sometimes quite small, I like to tuck them everywhere.

In a section of a vintage divided drawer used as a focal point on my favorite display cabinet in my studio. . .

And lots of nests inside the display cabinet

Such as this one with an electric 'candle' that I think is pretty darned cool (that's a nightlight fixture with a 'candle wrap' cut to height and wax-dipped bulb that I fitted inside a grapevine nest, filled it with some dry moss then set it in a votive candle holder that has a little bird perched on one side)

And this great trio of footed cupcake plates topped with rusty chicken wire 'bell jars' (would that be 'wire cages'? Maybe.) protecting the nests and porcelain robin eggs underneath.

Here's a nest tucked into a corner on my fabulous tin bird shelf (and don't you L-O-V-E the nest painting by my talented dear daughter!) above my desk.

And in the entry way - another display cabinet with a row of jars, each showing off a single nest of all sizes and shapes.

I LOVE these jars and how they can make something seem that much more special.

Of course, you may or may not expect to see a nest in a bird cage.

but pretty sure you're not expecting to see one attached to the wall. . . . 

I have a special place of honor for one of my real nests

complete with an apothecary jar containing unhatched eggs.  Many of my other real nests are tucked around on the covered porches. . . pretty sure the birds think my place is a birdie condo!

In case you are wondering - I only 'harvest' nests in the fall after the birds have left and before the winds begin causing havoc. I spray them with an insecticide, then spray with water and let sit in the sun to dry well for a day or two. Before bringing them inside, I do also spray them with 2-3 coats of a matte finish clear spray paint. It helps keep them together and gives them a natural 'fresh' patina.  

P.S. I have other ideas I'm anxious to try with my nest too. . . stay tuned;-)

Tell me about your collections and share photos of your nesting decorating!! One of these days I'll show you my growing collection of bird cages.

Have a Nestful Kind of Day -

Robin Z