Tuesday, June 30, 2009

and the winner is....

Congratulations to:

momskid! from Etsy

You have won the 1st Contest on oldgreymare.
I'll be getting the prizes to you in a jiffy.

Thank you so much to all of you who "hearted" me on Etsy before and after the contest and to all the followers on the blog. Hope you'll stay with me as we venture forward on this creative journey.

Most of the items in the Contest Prize are still available for purchase on Etsy, or directly from me. Anything on Etsy can always be purchased directly from me, for local pickup. I will soon be pulling several items from Etsy to put in a nearby shop, and it is possible that prices will increase, so if you see something now, grab it, while some are even on sale.

I plan to have several new listings for Etsy in the coming weeks, and another Gathering announcement. I was doing a studio design and overhaul for a dear friend and working on the Gathering class, so nothing new was listed. I have another design job coming up in July that I am very excited about, so before that begins I need to head back up to the studio and get productive. Halloween and Christmas are on my mind, but then again so are birds and nests...and crowns...and Paris...and OK, OK, it's really a jumbled mess up there....

Congratulations again to momskid!

Sleep Glorious Sleep

While chatting with various gal pals in various venues, the topic of sleep, or lack of sleep, frequently popped up with everyone's opinion being voiced as to remedies attempted and multiple failures experienced.

It became most obvious to me while enjoying one of my favorite bloggers laments on her sleep issues that I had been hearing these stories from the young and the not so young, but always of female gender. Yeah yeah, Oprah mentions it, The View mentions it, but these friends all had very different lives, familial situations, kids-no kids, married-single, stay at home-working, the single common denominator was that they all had the same genitalia, as if there is now a scientific theory that 1 vagina =14.267453 less hours of sleep per week.

So, after a pretty good rest last evening, (went to sleep at 1:30, got up at 7:00 to let outside pee filled pooch, back for nap from 7:30 to 7:45, then up again for quick gal pal chat, then back under the covers for blissful 40 winks between 8:15 and 8:22), I decided to post my somewhat successful remedy prescription that I had sent to favorite blogger (see above and left) and discussed with another sleep crazed mother of six.

Here is partial prescrip- I am not a Doctor I only play one when asked to:

"Having suffered for years I have tried everything you have and more. I have purchased at least 20 different pillows, tried dozens of linen choices, sound machines, gave up all alcohol after seven. uh, pm, except for those nights when I don't. I have slept on every bed in the house (three) every couch, (also three). Slept with loud fans, quiet fans, no fans, cold rooms, hot rooms. Tried warm oatmeal, warm milk. Dogs in the bed, off the bed. Nightgowns, t- shirts, pjs-men's and women's and naked. Nudity was for only one night because I kept waking terrified of having to escape the house because of burglars, fire, floods etc and being caught via headlights in front yard a la nude. Those nightmares then kept me awake another week or so.

I pointed my bed north a la fung shui, and actually that helped, for several months. Also tried taking the lazy way and just sleeping upside down pointing north, until I woke up disoriented one morning, fell out of the bed and injured the dog when I landed on him.

This has gone on for years but I am finally having some success, having given up all hope of a permanent 8 hours.

There are now a few rules I attempt to adhere to, that might also help you.

No tv on in the bedroom, once I hit the bed. NO TV! Nothing good on anyway and if there is, TIVO, or DDR or whatever it is other people use. I use reruns.
Great linens- and I cannot stress this enough. Really good, really soft linens. Only cotton or flannel, but no sateens, Multiple light weight covers that I can kick back or pull up as needed. Try 2 top sheets, then a lightweight blanket, then an old soft matelasse. I am currently using vintage tablecloth as my top cover.
I retire much earlier than I used to, at least by 11. That means I go upstairs but not necessarily to bed. I read every night in a comfy chair in my room using only a small reading light, for at least 1 hour before bed or until I lose my place more than once. I check out over 40 books at a time from the library, and am now being considered for some award I think?

This has yielded me at least 5 hours of sleep a few nights a week and frequently the boring novel has me hovering in the vicinity of 8.

I still frequently find myself in the studio at 3 am but that is because of creative energy and you never suppress that.

Barring clicking beetles, snoring from others, loud neighbors etc, I am wishing you sleep, blissful sleep. Unfortunately as we women, ahem, age...these cycles of sleeplessness increase. The BiG "M" approaches. I had mine instantly via surgery. I did not sleep for all of 1996."

(Favorite blogger is now channeling Goldilocks by doing the bed hop routine.)

It's 11:11 time for a nap.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Final Peek

Look at this little treasure box! Overflowing with
Ephemera, ribbons, bird in a nest and an angel.
Brown wools, crowns and tags, and SO much more.
Delightful! It could be yours.....

Who will it be? Will it be you?

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Gathering 6/28/09



Chatting & Chewing

I tried very hard to get more photos this time, but I always get so busy doing other things (running up and down the stairs for one!) I did manage a few, but I don't need pictures to remember a fun day. Thank you to all.

Blogger Amy said...

I just wanted to thank you and say how much fun I had, not only doing the amazing projects, but meeting all new people too. What a wonderful experience it was to take one of your classes. I can't believe it took me so long to actually join in on the fun!

Peek #3 and Paper Gathering Day

Hannah made a crown yesterday

Design ideas are limitless. I cannot wait to see what
the class designs!

Everyone's kit is ready and waiting

Tower of paper treats

Lunch is ready! Wish you were here with us.

Peek #3

Yep, one of the heart make-do's is included and.....
there is more!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

CONTEST on oldgreymare Sneak #2

Two more items into the prize package and more to come!

Crown tags

Word tags in rusty tin

Five days left to enter. Contest ends at midnight on the 31st. Next week you will see some more of the prize package. I believe it is something quite special.

The Paper Gathering is tomorrow and I will spend today setting the tables, making dessert, cleaning house and getting excited to see all the completed projects. I am determined to take more photos this time, so check back Monday to see our crowns, journals etc.

A special shout out to Teresa who became a new Grandma on the 17th. Congratulations!

Enjoy the weekend! Hope you are able to do something special.

Post script to all you clever followers...you are not crazy...there were several typos when I posted earlier today, (that will teach me to post and phone chat at same time) but I came back just now and corrected them. ha!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Contest Prize Peek

OK blogger fans:

Drum roll please
The first item in the winner's basket will be this paper crown, but that is only the beginning of the wonders to be found, so get signed up..

:-) :-) :-) :-)

and no, unfortunately I cannot do it for you
and yes it is really easy
and no you don't have to buy anything
yes, if you are not a member of Etsy or have a blog, or gmail account you will have to pick a name and password, but that is all you will ever have to do, I swear.
and yes both the blog and Etsy are safe
and yes, if you were already signed up on my sites you are automatically entered
no, if all you receive are my emails, but have not signed up you are not entered, and again I cannot do it for you because I have your email.
and yes if you email me with your phone # (if I do not already have) I will talk you through it. It takes about 1 minute per site.
yes if you give me your email you will receive Old Grey Mare updates
no, if you don't give me your email you cannot receive updates.

:-) I hope that answers some of the questions that a few of you have had about the contest.

I will be posting sneaks of the prizes all this next week. Remember Wed the 31st is the last day to enter.

Monday, June 22, 2009

CONTEST on oldgreymare

In order to make this blog a little more interactive and to update my mailing list, I am having a contest starting today and lasting until end of the day June 30.

All you have to do to enter is sign up as a follower on my blog to earn one entry. For an additional entry, or two chances, mark me as a favorite on Etsy also. Already a follower? You are automatically entered. On July 1 Hannah will pull one entry from a large bowl, (or wee little one, depending on outcome).

Sorry, you cannot be an anonymous follower or I won't know who you are! Although not necessary to win, I am hoping you will also give me your email address so that I can add you to my Gathering list. I NEVER share my list and use it only to update blog postings and Etsy listings and announce shows and classes.

What will you win, you ask? What is the prize? hmmmmm shall I tell you? I ah, don't think I will....just yet. I will give you hints in the days to come. It will be good I promise. I'm never skimpy, you guys know that!

So sign up and on July 1st one of you will win a.... ;-)

Questions? email me

Friday, June 19, 2009


Got up and out early and came back with:

JuNk! More JuNk!
Just you wait and see what it becomes. Somewhere in all that is a Gathering class of... wait for it:

CROWNS! yep, crowns!. Depending on how my week goes you may be able to check back here soon and see the first one. First I HAVE to finish "kitting" up the Gathering supplies and then I can play.

I spent the last three hours scrubbing up half of that stuff and now I'm going to go read. Everyone enjoy their weekend!

For all the new people visiting the blog: If you would like to receive notices of blog updates and gathering info, just send me your email and I will add you to my update list. I do not contact you in any form except to let you know there are updates to Etsy/and the blog and also show schedules. I do not share my email list with any one. You may request to be removed from the list at any time and I will promptly do so. If you are visiting the area I am able to plan special Gatherings for your group around your interests and budgets. Las Vegas is much more than bright lights. It is also small twinkly ones all over my country back yard.

Also a plea to all of you repeat visitors: Please sign up as a follower and mark me as a favorite on Etsy if you like what you see. It really helps me in so many ways. If you have questions, please email me. You can do that by clicking on the little envelope at the bottom of each post. While you are there, click on the comment part and tell me what you think or what you would like to see. See? It is right below here.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

simple day

Nothing too exceptional about today but Brit did stop by and in no time flat, fixed four sprinklers and finally, finally repaired my back porch door. I have had several different people try to repair it, and charged me "good" money even though they really didn't fix it for "good". While visiting last time, my brother spent an hour filing off the bottom to stop the HORRENDOUS screeching, scratching, scraping, sound it made every time you opened it. Brit walks up to it, goes hmmmm, tilts his head a bit, goes out to his truck, gets a few tools and knocks on the door about five minutes later and says "go check your door". Amazing!

He also brought over a wonderful supply of rusty stuff for me to make folk art with and I now have even more piles in the garage.

Amy and I are going junking soon, so I should have enough to last till Christmas at least.

All in all a simple day, but a good one. Why ask for more? well..ice cream would be nice. It's 7pm and 95 degrees out for pete' s sake!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Darling Daughter

Sitting here at the computer ( you can see corner of keyboard) updating Etsy and blog info and darling daughter brings in dinner for me. Gnocchi in a tomato sauce and lovely salad. Food always tastes so much better when someone else cooks it, and that for me is a rare event. I either cook it or go out and pay for it, and lately it has been shamefully more of the latter. Thank you darling daughter.

I started cooking meals and doing laundry for my folks and brother at a very early age because my Mom was very ill for a very long time. So if you add up those years and combine with all the years since leaving that home, and having one of my own, I have been doing this for 45 years already, and some days the thrill of it all is gone.

I love to cook. I hate to plan to cook and I hate to shop at the market. I love to fold clothes all nice and pretty, I hate to sort before laundering. I hate to worry about energy usage and cost and I hate to put clothes away. I love to iron if there are less than 10 items. I hate to iron if the basket is full. I love every gizmo and gadget that has to do with cooking and I love ironing boards, irons, covers and clotheslines. I am a confused chick sometimes, but then aren't we all just a little bit?

Buzz! There is the dryer buzzer and I have to take dishes to the kitchen....Should we talk about doing the dishes? sigh

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Whatnots and Wangadoodles

Rose Bowl Flea Market 6/14/09

Amy, me and Brooklyn woohoo!

Highlight of the day- Whatnots
Amy snagged a couple vintage dresses, a great suitcase and lots of great whatnots for her vintage altered art. You can see them here: Amy

I snagged a couple metal pieces that will soon be used in the backyard for planters; a trough for feeding some kind of animal and a crab catcher. Also added two great new vintage style shams for my bed, made of linen and a blue cabbage roses print.

The broken collapsible wire basket was thrown in for good
measure by the owner of the booth. I'm sure it was
because of Brooklyn. The first quote was $50.00, then suddenly free!
After inspection this morning, I'm sure I can repair it.

I love my new shams and you can find some just like
them here. Please tell John I sent you. I now have to add
some blue back into the room for summer.

Lowlight or I should say "lowlife" of the day- Wangadoodle

Coming onto freeway after stopping for gas we came upon a middle aged, potbellied dufus that is urinating in full view of every car. His wife, girlfriend, unfortunate, stupid companion, standing by his side, no less. As he spies us, two women in a car only a few feet from him, he waggles his wangadoodle at us many, many times grinning like the royal buffoon he is. Please help me understand what has become of the human race.

Brooklyn on his first road trip like this, was such a trooper and broke many hearts with his giggles and unending smiles. We made it safely home and Brooklyn is safely tucked back into his bed. Mom Amy must be exhausted and hopefully won't read this until tomorrow because she needs a long, long sleep. This better be tomorrow for you girlfriend! I'm up because I have to watch a show at 10:00 that I can't believe I still watch......ugh, how embarrassing...Army Wives....I feel the shame.

Thanks Amy for a wonderful day!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Graduation 6. 9.09

There is no way to express the range of emotions that
ran rampant that afternoon. The pictures will have to
speak for themselves.

The offspring

Proud Papa

The foursome always together
Morgan, Lauren, Hannah, Rose
Morgan and Rose graduated the next day from

So cute!

Lauren, Toni, Vivian, Hannah

Aunt Kathleen and Aunt Mary

Lunch for 10 was at PF Changs and we ate at the
special reserve table in the kitchen. Hannah was
showered with wonderful gifts all day and overwhelmed.

Just before Ben was to leave for Portland, his gift of
the quintessential black down coat for chilly winters at
NYU arrived. Hannah was thrilled and in 95 degree heat
wore it inside for about a half an hour.

Ben's visit was much too brief, we miss him something fierce. He is so busy with Fall of the House and of course his day job, that we are thrilled he was able to get away at all.

It took me all of Wednesday to recover from all the emotion. I took two naps and still only accomplished a run to Karen's with Amy for buttons.

Karen will be at Bead Jungle in Henderson on the 14th from 12-4. Stop on by and check it out.
She also has a booth at Goat Feathers in BC and at the Antique Mall on the left side of highway as you approach BC. At both locations you can find her incredible button bracelets.

To keep me busy Monday I finished up this little beauty... the crown obsession continues, and more are in the works. Some may even appear on Etsy.

The next two days are devoted to Etsy. I have not put anything on recently and I absolutely need to, if I am to have any kind of following. If you stop by for a visit and like what you see, please heart me- it is easy to do.

These rusty cans filled with word tags go on this
evening, (maybe very late this evening) along with
my linen sachet bags.

There are 2 spots remaining for the Gathering. The class closes tomorrow evening.

I am also selling several quilts, mostly vintage blue and white. Email me if you would like to see photos.

Saturday, June 6, 2009


By this time tomorrow my beloved children will both be here at home, enjoying dinner and hanging out. It is such a rare opportunity that they are home together and as the years pass, these occasions will most likely be fewer, especially while they are living on opposite coasts.

A very dear friend, Lorene, stopped by today to visit with Hannah and bestow lovely gifts upon the graduate. Lorene has watched Hannah grow since the day we brought her home and was here today to witness the beautiful young woman she has become.

The 09 graduates are congregating at nearby coffee shops, restaurants, my den, and this evening an official grad party. The summer will go too fast and soon the high school gang will all go their separate ways and to such exciting adventures. NYU, George Washington, MIT, Berklee School of Music, Vassar, UNR and far too many more to remember. They are giddy with excitement and a wee bit nervous and it is such fun to listen to them talk about all the possibilities.

Hannah and her oldest friend Morgan, (friends since the first day of kindergarten) will be opening their Kindergarten boxes this week, full of school work, painted pictures and photographs. They were sealed shut the last day of kindergarten to be opened upon graduation. What a wonderful idea and thank you Mrs. Purvance.

Brit was here again yesterday to help with the back yard and I'm hesitant to sing his praises any more because once everyone realizes what a great day worker he is, he might become too busy to help me. He also washed some windows and repaired a light. Shhh, don't tell anyone...

The Gathering now has 4 seats remaining. Register before June 12th, to guarantee your spot. Fair Warning. Dessert will be extra special, and unfortunately, obscenely loaded with calories.

This weather is simply delicious, my windows are flung wide open, and the fresh air is so wonderful, perhaps for the last evening in a very long, hot summer. Enjoy!

Thursday, June 4, 2009


Sue's surgery went very well today, she is home and is doing just great! So many of you had asked how she was, and I have passed along your good wishes to her. She will be up and about as early as tomorrow afternoon and she was already fielding phone calls when I left this evening. She is a real trooper, but then she hails from hearty stock. (Stockfleth actually!)

Hannah's graduation crown - she wore it last night

I've been going a little crown crazy lately...small ones, medium ones, big ones!!
Maybe there is a royal in my future? I'll take a royal flush, but since I haven't gambled in over 31 years, that is not likely. Maybe someone will be a royal pain, or make me cake with royal icing....perhaps I am just royally tired, since I got up so early to meet Sue at the hospital.

so with a nod of my regal head wear I bid you good eve.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Paper Gathering June 28

Deadline for registration is Approaching - June 12th
May 24th post has all the Gathering Information
Come join us, as we celebrate papier!
We will be creating.....


Journal with Paper Pierced Medallion


Paper Bucket with Trims

Glittered Crown Tags

Cabbage Rose Garland

Crown Magnet with clip

Monday, June 1, 2009

The First "lasts" of HS

It is Hannah's last full day of high school. I didn't think about that until I was making her lunch this morning. If I had, I would have put together something a little more special than the salad, grapes and bagel she took with her. I would have had a surprise waiting for her to open as I often did in the past. Notes written all over her two paper towels. (Always two, one to use as a place mat, one for wiping up.) Superman lunch bags one week this year, that she thought were wonderful. My favorite, the brightly colored Muppet flatware she found waiting at the bottom of the bag one day. Her lunch crowd went bonkers over them, and she brought them home, instead of tossing as usual. I noticed that some of the Muppets went with her to the senior picnic last week. I'm going to sneak some into her college luggage as a surprise, to give a giggle.

Several of Hannah's friends were here most of yesterday working on a final "project" for a class. They were designing a board game entitled So you want to be a Dictator. The dining table covered with paint and poster board, colored pencils, game pieces and styrofoam. Another last.

The last HS final exams.
The last goodbye from her to some HS friends. Oh, they'll mean to keep in touch...but we know.
The last  bellowed "Hannah, get up, you're going to be late!"
The last search for missing books, papers, shoes, keys, excuse notes.
The last time I feel calm return, as the front door slams, and it is quiet once again in this house. The frenzied mornings, give them back, please, for just a little while.