what I do

what I do

Thursday, June 30, 2011

A great calendar idea

Part of staying organized when I am juggling clients, family, invitations and appointments is making sure that everything I need to do is written down and in one place. The busier I am the harder it gets to stay on top of everything and and when I lose papers or information it makes my life difficult. And these days I am really being challenged. I rely on my calendar very much. I an old-fashioned girl and like to have a calendar that I can write in (not on my blackberry or computer). I need to see it in front of me.

I like my calendar to be large enough that I can find it easily (not lost in a stack of papers or notebooks) and also large enough that will fit a regular sheet of paper inside without it sticking out (my printed to-do lists for example).

Today I received a lovely new calendar in the mail from Lyn Kennedy of Pocket the Date calendars. How nice that it just happens to coordinate on my desk (a big plus in my world!). 

She has combined a monthly calendar (which is what I prefer because I like to see the whole month laid out in front of me) with pockets to keep invitations, or receipts (or whatever) in.  I love the idea of the pockets!

One thing that I am really bad about is keeping track of client hours and my milage. And my receipts. I stuff my receipts in my car's console and write my hours down on random pieces of paper most of the time and then scramble when I am trying to invoice or look for a receipt. I think this pocket calendar could be my answer to both. One calendar for the car and one for my desk is what I am thinking.

You can check the Pocket the Date calendars out here. What do you think? Do you like the idea?

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Kids, dogs, and the sun

I spent a good portion of the day looking at fabrics for two separate projects. Both require outdoor fabrics. One because of kids and dogs (soil, stains). The other because they live on the water and sun is an issue (fading). It is so exciting when you can find beautiful fabrics that can be used inside and don't scream "outdoors".  Like the Hearst Castle Collection from Pindler and Pindler.

2645 Pastiglia Hearst Castle Outdoor Collection from Pindler and Pindler.  Retails for $180.
Isn't she pretty?

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

House Proud

“Nothing annoys a woman more
than to have company drop in 
and find the house
looking as it usually does.”

I love that quote. It is so true. I had a little meltdown today about the state of my house (sorry guys). 

Because the reality is that it is not possible to keep all our balls in the air and have a perfectly clean house all of the time.  

With beds made every morning ...

Bathrooms cleaned ...

Fresh flowers on the kitchen table ...

And everything in its place ...

Unless maybe if you are Windsor Smith. 
I'd sure like it to be (always clean) though. And if I can't have her house (so beautiful), can I just look like that? Wow.

All Images via House Beautiful

Monday, June 27, 2011

Monday making lists


Happy Monday! I hope you have a great week planned. I will be all work and no play this week. Just trying to keep my head above water. And to help stay afloat, I am making my lists and sticking to them. It is the only way I can stay on task. 

I actually have quite a few lists this week and they are all lined up waiting for me.  I am finding it harder and harder to remember everything without writing it down. And that is not like me.  I guess there is just too much going on in my head. Last week I lost my car. I was on the phone with a wedding client who had called just as I was leaving my car to walk into an unfamiliar mall. Because I was on the phone, I didn't pay attention to where I was walking or where I parked. When I went to find my car I had absolutely no idea where it was. It took me about an hour to find it and in the process I was fairly convinced that I was losing my mind. It was not a good time. 

So this week, I vow to make some changes. I will try to get enough sleep and eat healthy.

 Do you think this asparagus cake qualifies? Check out Sweetapolita here for some more amazing looking cakes! And don't forget to make your list(s)! Happy Monday :)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

When you know you are loved


I am reading the book, The Shack. Again. I read it a few years ago and it changed the way I think about a lot of things, particularly the way that we (I) view God and also the issue of pain and suffering in this world. When I was in the airport a couple of weeks ago and found myself without anything to read, I picked up a paperback copy to read on the plane. I didn't. But I am reading it now. There is so much in the book that is incredibly insightful and so very profound. I am glad I am reading it again.

Here, God (Papa) is speaking to Mackenzie:

"The real underlying flaw in your life, Mackenzie, is that you don't think I am good. If you knew I was good and that everything - the means, the ends, and all the processes of individual lives - is all covered by my goodness, then while you might not understand what I am doing, you would trust me. But you don't."

Years ago, I was working with a client that had not built up trust in me yet. She would worry unnecessarily about details that she did not need to worry about. One morning, I was thinking about her and had the thought that if she could just trust me to do my job, she could relax and enjoy the process. She would not have to lay awake at night and worry about how something was going to turn out. Because I had it all under control. And as I formed the idea in my head, "if she could just trust me," I realized that is what God is asking of us (me) as well. Ah, if I could just trust that HE is in control then I could also sit back peacefully and let Him work things out.

"Trust is the fruit of a relationship in which you know you are loved."


"Mackenzie," It was the voice of Papa again, especially gentle and tender. "You really don't understand yet. You try to make sense of the world in which you live based on a very small in incomplete picture of reality. It is like looking at a parade through the tiny knothole of hurt, pain, self-centeredness, and power and believing you are on your own and insignificant.  All of these thoughts contain powerful lies. You see pain and death as ultimate evils and God as the ultimate betrayer, or perhaps, at best, as fundamentally untrustworthy."

"I am good, and I desire only what is best for you."

(excerpt from The Shack by Wm. Paul Young, chapter 8 (last page).

Friday, June 24, 2011

Happy walls

Need something to do this weekend? Why don't you hang a little art on your walls!



All images (unless otherwise noted) via Pinterest here. Happy Friday everyone!  

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Summertime and outdoor fabrics

Apparently we are officially in the summer season. I wouldn't know except that I read someone's blog yesterday that mentioned it was the first day of summer. I have been too busy to even notice! I spent the day working in my office, going through the piles of paperwork and trying to get caught up (this is a repeating pattern of mine) and also doing some research on the computer (besides caring for a sick child which is why I was home all day in the first place).

One of the things I was looking for were outdoor pillows for an out of town client. So in honor of summer ... here are a few that I found:

Aren't they beautiful? I found them all on Etsy (I could peruse Etsy all day long) and all are outdoor fabrics. And speaking of outdoor fabrics ... did you know that you can use them indoors as well?

Pindler and Pindler Hearst Castle Outdoor Collection 2648-Mudejar in Verde

Is my client worried that we are using this white fabric on her dining chairs? Not at all. Because this 100% solution dyed all weather acrylic fabric is soil and stain, mildew and fade resistant. It will not only look beautiful but will stay beautiful and will be virtually care free. And just to make her feel more comfortable, my upholster gave her his little bleach test demonstration. He washes a swatch of the fabric in a bleach solution and then compares it to the unwashed fabric (they are identical). So if that spot of spaghetti sauce falls on the seat ... no worries.

Do you have any fun summer plans?

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Carpet tiles

I went by the pediatric clinic today to finish up a couple of details. I had to level the Ikea frames now that the photographs have been added and did a little repair work on some of the canvases that had tears in them. I used duct tape to repair the tears (just put a patch of duct tape on the back) and then mixed up some acrylic paint and covered up the white canvas showing through the tear.

Tip: To keep artwork level, I take  painter's tape and wad up a couple of pieces (sticky side out) and use them to secure the frame to the wall. I used to use quake hold but I found that it left an oily spot on the paint afterward. The painter's tape does not hurt the wall if the artwork is removed later. Using the tape keeps the artwork level even if it is bumped or while being cleaned.

While I was there I got to peek inside the finished classrooms. I had not seen the rugs installed yet and they really finish off the rooms (I could only get into one to photograph). One of the teachers commented on how much they love the clinic - their classrooms, the kitchen and even the conference room. She said she doesn't even want to leave at night. That was so rewarding to hear!

The area rugs were custom designed FLOR rugs. I used them primarily because they come in individual pieces, or tiles, which can be replaced if stained or damaged. Because these rugs are being used in a pre-school setting and also with autistic children the risk of an accident soiling the rug is highly probable. The rugs will need to be cleaned often and so using a commercial grade carpet was also important. Being able to replace a 'tile' if needed was an added bonus. What I love about the FLOR carpet tiles is that I did not have to sacrifice design at all. They come in many colors and patterns. I selected a simple rug with a main solid color and with a second color as a border. Originally I had planned to use a few more colors but it was decided that the multi-colored rug would be too distracting to the children. The style I used is called Toy Poodle. The carpet tiles are easy to install and the possibilities are endless with all the colors and styles available:

Aren't they great?