Thursday, December 20, 2012

Winter Wonderland

There is no better way to start the Christmas Season than to go to an Art Event created by the AMAZING Kim Caldwell of Artistic Bliss!  An Art Event completely created around everything Christmas!  No detail was missed!  Above you see the Candy Bar that kept us all “HIGH” the whole weekend.  Below… the magic of the room where it all took place.
Kim (& her Elves) made all the table decor, gifts & the chair covers!  She never misses a detail!
When you walked up to the registration table to get your name tag & table assignment…
Manni Skirt

Registration Collage
My friend Jo Ann went with me for her very first event & was AMAZED at the splendor!
Each Place had treasures to enjoy!
Table Decor Collage
The sparkly box full of ribbons & lace, a silver tray, white chocolate snow flake all so pretty.  The sweet snow globe with the Wonderland Mascot smiling through the snow…
Beautiful table centerpieces.  Five in all.  Vickie & I were the first to ask Kim if we could buy them after the event.  Being the sweet, giving, sharing person she is YES was the answer the next day.  Poor thing didn’t even get to keep one due to a misunderstanding.  I almost felt bad but, loved them so.  And darn it we were first!( Hee Hee).  The bad news is that my centerpiece had to stay at Vickie’s house (which she says absolutely makes her dinning room table sparkle) as things would never have made it with American Airlines “kid glove" service (YEAH RIGHT)!  But, Ms Vickie that will be coming home with me this summer when I’m out there in my van!!!!!
Candy Bar
Do you have visions of sugar plums dancing in your head?  I did!!! 
Well, as of today the packages are wrapped.  The groceries stored away for the weekend through Christmas Day.  Hoping to not see the grocery store again (until after Christmas) as it’s a crazy place.  Are you finished?  Are you ready?  Hope you’ll come back to see some of the AMAZING creations for some of the swaps from our Winter Wonderland! 
HUGS!  Charlene

Monday, December 17, 2012

It Feels Like Christmas On A Visit to California!

002 Tree in Mall
We landed at the airport in Orange County all excited for the time together & going to Kim Caldwell’s Winter Wonderland Event.  But, first stop… to pick up Vickie’s computer at the Apple Store.  The mall was decorated with this wonderful display in the center.
It was HUGE with 2 Santa’s over looking a vignette made of Doll Houses & a train set.  Santa was sort of scary looking.
004 Train in Tree Display
008 Train
It was really darling.  A burger at Ruby’s & we were off to Vickie’s to sleep off the plane ride & get ready for more adventures.
The next day we wrapped all the goodies for our stocking swap (as we knew TSA would open/destroy the packages if we did it before leaving home).  A lot of laughing & silliness took place in Vickie’s living room & then we were  off to Rogers Gardens to see the amazing gifts, trees, & flowers.  You can see Cindy & Vickie goofing around in front of the Gilded Life Tree.
Such beauty!  Cindy bought me one of the angel ornaments & gave it to me saying “You’re my guardian angel”.  OMG I thought I was going to cry.
A lace tree on their display table was really pretty.
I couldn’t pass up this little treasure shown below.  Hubby agreed that I needed it for one of our trees at home.  JUST LOVE HER FACE!
Night shots are hard to get… with the lights glowing in the garden…
Look!  It’s the elves!   Maybe not!!!! But, it is the Art Sisters all hamming it up.  Ms Sandy joined us after work.  On the left is Ms Vickie (the hostess with the mostess), then Sandy in the back & Cindy in front of her. Next, myself & my friend Jo Ann who joined us all the way from Tennessee.
The flowers were beautiful! Poinsettia Baskets hanging from all the trees.
All colors.

A darling Herb Box…
And another darling train in an outdoor setting.
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!  Hope you’ll check back for more adventures!  I will tell you that traveling to California twice   in the month of December (each time I stayed a week) really puts a girl behind in Holiday preparations.  But, I LOVED every minute!
HUGS! Charlene

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Framed Class by Riki

Group Photo
There's nothing better than being with like mined souls……  Friends from classes of the past, Kim Caldwell of Artistic Bliss(amazing Art Events that I love to go to) & some of our friends from that Art Scene joined us.
Frames #2  from Riki's Class at Joy's Nov 2012
Taking a sheet of metal, cutting your shape & adorning the whole thing with bits & baubles of goodness.  Above is the finished projects by all the girls.  The little opening (for a photo) is only 1 inch.
Riki teaching
My buddy Riki Schumacher is a great teacher (click on her name & you can go visit her blog) & we all had soooooooooooo much fun being together to learn & play.
Here’s a close up of my finished piece.  I am ready to find just the right photo to put inside.  But, you could also use this concept (without the hole) to make a necklace focal piece.
Diana Salvuchi  Susan Hunt
I got to see my friends Susan Hunt & Diana Salvuchi & it brought back fond memories from the very first jewelry class back in 2009.  Both these sweet girls were at my table at that class.  And I have been blessed to be able to see them now & again at other classes.
There’s NOTHING BETTER THAN BEING WITH BESTY’S!  Where the heck is Joy & Laurie in this photo?
Joy hard at Work
Ahhhhhh Ms Joy is working on her project!
Joy in her studio
The whole event was hosted at Joy' Campbell’s beautiful home.  This is a photo of her in her adorable studio.  She is indeed an amazing hostess.  The food & presentation was over the top!
The day before class Joy, Laurie, Vickie, Cindy & I all went downtown Claremont to enjoy a really fun alfresco lunch.
Riki at Flea Market
And on Sunday after the class a few of us went to a great Flea Market to scoop up some treasures.  The jewelry, dolls, bits & pieces all found there way into our bags (or boxes shipped home). 
Joy & Laurie at Flea
Here’s Joy &^ Laurie with proof of the treasures!  Look at Joy’s buggy it’s full & Laurie is toting a BIG sack of goodies.  Thank you Joy for the hospitality & having us all together.  And thank you Riki for coming to teach us & share your talent & fun spirit.  And thank you to all my friends who make my life so much more meaningful.  I love you each so much!
I’m sorry I am so very behind in all my posts & I hope to do a better job going forward but, I have been traveling so much & the make up at work is over whelming when I return.  So…. my poor blog has suffered.  I really hope to do better in 2013.  Thanks for hanging in there with me.  I love to know you’ve stopped by so leave me a comment to say hello.  And thank you Riki for letting me borrow some of your photos for this post!
HUGS!  Charlene

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Chattanooga Part II

Well, here is the color on that same mountain side I shared in the last photo.  2 weeks later.  Joann just sent me this as a comparison of color from our trip out to Chattanooga.  DARN!!!! Guess we’ll just have to go back another year.
We got to see some pretty color though… you can see the tree behind us (with the Civil War cannon) here at the visitor center for the Chickamauga Battle Ground.
The park is covered with miles of markers for different battles, remembrances from different states.
Monuments  Collage
So beautiful & yet so sad!
Imagine marching days upon days to come to an area you are totally unfamiliar with.  To sneak around in woods like these never knowing who you will meet. 
Thousands of men dead.  Dying…. Wounded…. Brothers fighting brothers.  Family killing family.  Over ideas, over maintaining life as they knew it.   SAD!  Thank God we haven’t had that here in this country again.  Thank you Mike for sharing your vast knowledge of this subject.

Just a tiny bit of personal family history… My Grandmother’s Great Grandfather (on Daddy’s side) was a much decorated General in this battle & there was a lot of information we saw while there at the battle grounds.  His name was William Rosecrans (click HERE to learn a bit more about him).  When I go out to Manhattan Beach for one of Kim Caldwell’s events & stay at The Belamar Hotel, I always marvel at seeing Rosecrans AVE knowing it is named after someone in MY FAMILY!!!
Next on the agenda was a ride on that boat you see docked on the Tennessee River.  It is a jet speed boat (that hydro foils at 56 miles an hour) called the River Gorge Explorer.  It goes so fast that it planes up OFF the water when it is cruising.  Click the blue name/link above to go to the site to get more information.
City River View Collage
Leaving port we saw the city views from the river.
Once we reached the Tennessee River Gorge we saw the multi million dollar homes off Signal Mountain.
Here’s a beautiful shot of some of the homes down on the water & if you look very closely at the top/middle of that largest mountain… that’s the signal point.  The Union soldiers would watch Lookout Mountain & signal to the troops on the ground the points of interest to help them win the battles taking place in that area.  The photo below is taken with a telephoto lens so it helps you see the “look out” better.
And the photo below is of “The SUCK”.  It is a fast moving stream coming out of the mountain & before they built the series of damns to help to control flooding on the river (& raised the level of the river over 30 feet), this place was the scene of some terrible river disasters.  In fact, a large paddleboat sits at the bottom here (about 130 feet below now).  It all looks so calm & harmless.   Modern technology is truly amazing.  But, just below this point in “Hell’s Kitchen” there have been 2 sinking’s recently (barges heavily loaded & unable to maneuver the twist & turns).
Hubby & I LOVED the house below.  We could see ourselves living there with our deck boat in the boat house.  Coffee in the morning on that deck… & a glass of wine watching the sun set.  What this Texas girl won’t do to escape the heat…
Speaking of houses…
Yachet Collage
A YACHT…The second little photo shows it coming up behind us.   WOW It’s name was Freedom.  Our captain said it had multiple luxury staterooms on board, a hot tub, & a full staff.  Now that’s the way to travel in luxury!  Where were they going?  The Tennessee/Alabama College football game that was to be played the following weekend.  Mike says that they don’t tailgate for this game they all come in on their boats & they cookout & party on the boats.  People mooring out in the river & crossing from/through one persons boat to the next to get to shore for the game.
Right behind him came a HOUSE BOAT flying the Alabama University flag.
Sun setting Collage
You can see the shadows are starting to fall over the mountain & the homes along it’s bank so it’s time to head back to Chattanooga.
The lights on the pier are so pretty when we get back.
We drove down river to one of Mike & Joann’s favorite places to eat & had a wonderful table on the outside patio.  Thank you for two marvelous days.  So much history & so much natural beauty.  Tomorrow… we’re off to Lynchburg for a tour at Jack Daniels Distillery.    Hope you’ll come back in a few days to see a few shots of that.
HUGS!  Charlene
Related Posts with Thumbnails