My First Chalkboard

Chalkboards have been around in the blog world for a long time now, but I finally got around to making some. 

I saved a bunch of dated framed prints that were given to us, but I didn't find the chalkboard paint until January (at Home Depot.) This is the first one I made. I didn't bother taking apart the frame because the back was professionally sealed and in good shape.

I just painted 3 or 4 coats of Rustoleum Chalkboard paint with a trim brush and then carefully painted the frame with a mis-tint sample pot of Behr Ultra paint and primer in one, in a white shade. Right over the glass because the can said I could ;)

The top of the frame has the perfect groove for chalk. As I was thinking of a great quote to write on it one day after work, I happened to glance into the hallway and saw my boys' coats on the stair newel post and our youngest son's backpack dumped on the floor. I swear they used to be much better at putting things away! So forget cutesy or inspirational quote for now, this message is what we need right now.

There have been a few other small changes to our entry which I will share soon. With the black and white happening in this small area, I am really feeling the need to change out the pine mirror I blogged about here.

You can find me at these great parties...
Savvy Southern Style's Wow Us Wednesdays #55
White Wednesday at Faded Charm
Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage


A Gifted Vintage Grinder

My brother-in-law Bob gave me this old grinder that belonged to his great grandmother. He said I would appreciate it (and he's right!)
It is made in Germany, probably fairly old since it belonged to his great grandmother (his mom is in her late 80's.) 
KYM is the marking under the little removeable glass measuring piece, and Stahlmahlwerk is part of the description on the back.
My favourite part is the chippy blue wooden handle and the matching blue wood lid. I often see vintage green and red handled utensils, and own some green and red handled rolling pins, but this is the first time I have seen blue paint used. Blue makes me very happy.
Just look at the chippiness! Sigh!
The backing is white painted wood, the grinder is metal, the handle tip and lid are painted wood, the upper portion is ceramic and the measuring cup is glass. 
My BIL used it to grind spices for his homemade jerky, but I'm thinking of mounting it on our kitchen wall. Have you ever seen a grinder like this before?

I'm sharing this with...


A Frame with an Agricultu'R'al Feel

This is the newest frame I added to the gallery wall in our living room.
Originally I was going with all black frames, then I tried some pine frames, and after I painted this old frame white I was inspired to add it to the gallery. I was looking for a creative way to frame the black letter 'R' and asked K, our almost 15 year old son, to cut some of his extra rabbit wire to the size of the frame.
This idea is not original to me but I really like the industrial/agricultural feel the rabbit cage wire gives to my gallery. A staple gun made quick work of attaching the wire to the frame.
A simple piece of twine ties the black 'R' to the rabbit wire.
I think it looks so much better framed.

On Thursday I shared the living room gallery work-in-progress as it was at Christmas,

and the Feed and Seed sign I painted. I still want to get a bigger frame for the photo of K's prize winning 4-H calf and I might rearrange a few things, but the wall is starting to come together.
The cost for this project was around $8 (yard sale frame $1, letter R $7 at a local decor shop, rabbit cage wire -free, and paint we had on hand.) This gallery wall is taking a long time to come together but I am enjoying the process. 

You can find me at the following parties...
Cowgirl Up! #4 at Cedar Hill Ranch also available on The Farmhouse Porch and two others


Feed and Seed Sign

Well, I figured out how to upload my photos from my camera onto our new laptop so I could share photos of the sign I painted on the weeekend.
 Now I need to figure out how to get Picasa working on the laptop so I can edit my photos. Oh, and practice to hit the shift key and not the backslash key :( But I'm getting there. 
(It was a bit overcast when I took these photos so I apologize in advance for the straight out of camera shots.) I'm still working on the gallery wall in our living room and decided we needed a sign. Of course I wanted to have something a bit 'farm' related so I chose 'Feed and Seed.'
 I recycled the first sign I painted a bunch of years ago by painting white and then off-white over the beige with dark green 'CANOE RENTALS'. The board was a rough cut piece and so it has some natural roughness to it that made distressing really easy. Some Minwax stain wiped on and off added age to the distressed hand painted letters.
If you look closely you can see a hint of the old lettering and I really like that. The cost was $0, my favourite kind, because I had everything on hand.
I still need a few frames to complete this gallery, shown in the photo above at Christmas, but I think this sign is another step in the right direction. I will be sharing another addition to this gallery wall later in the week. It involves some rabbit wire (similar to chicken wire.) 
The lettering is not perfectly straight, but do you think it fits the agriculture theme of our living room gallery wall? Actually, we have pretty big hints of our love of agriculture in our home, including our kitchen, above, with the Farmer's Market sign I painted, and the barn photos. Hoping you have a great end to the week. We are expecting a big snowstorm tonight, weirdly enough the biggest one of this almost snowless winter of ours.

You can find me here....
Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage


I'm Back

Until this week we really had no idea how much we depend on our computer. We have only ever had one family computer, and this week she went down. Down with viruses. Luckily all our photos are safe, but she is in the shop getting cleaned up and hopefully we will get her back later this week. With young teens needing to do homework, my blog and everyday 'stuff' we decided to buy a laptop yesterday and brought it home today. This might make juggling computer time a bit easier for us! (We didn't get a mac because of the cost and I still have to walk my husband through most things on pc's as it is.)

I hope to be back soon with photos and answering emails as soon as we get our old girl back and work out some wireless stuff. For now I will try and visit some of you. Well, after our boys get some assignments researched.


I Could Do This All Day and 3 Year Blog Anniversary

Playing with clay and painting-what a great way to spend a day!
On a recent school trip/retreat, the staff and students were encouraged to paint and create several pieces. This bowl was created by the nun running the retreat, and I got to paint it!
 Of course I chose blues and I am very happy with how it turned out.
This piece is much chunkier and primitive, but I had the opportunity to create it from a chunk of clay. I love the wash of colours Sister chose for it (we ran out of time to paint as our bus arrived.)
It is a wee bit lower on one side, but not nearly as much as this picture implies. When I brought the pieces home I showed them to our boys and my youngest (13) said this piece was his favourite because it had 'my fingerprints.' 
We rolled clay and shaped this last piece over a 'pattern' plate.
We had a lovely and relaxing day and enjoyed the staff and students really enjoyed unwrapping all our pieces when they were delivered. I would love to try my hand at more pieces one day. I felt quite hypnotized watching Sister spin a bowl and weave her story. Totally stress free. Have you ever painted or worked with clay before? I'm going to enjoy finding a use for them. 
Today is my 3 year blogging anniversary! 

I'm sharing this with...
Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage
Inspiration Friday @ At The Picket Fence


Blooms in Red, White and Pink for Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day!
 I am sharing some flowers from our home last month, in shades of reds, pinks and whites.
 I'm hoping that however you spend you day,
  with a special significant other,
 with loved ones,
  with friends, pets, or some quiet time by yourself,

 that your day is beautiful! Happy Valentine's Day!


Kitchen Shelves for Valentine's

Our kitchen shelves got some Valentine's L.O.V.E. 
The two shelves we added at the end of our upper cabinets are fun to decorate seasonally.
I made a quickie little banner of tags with a HAPPY VALENTINE'S message. Okay, it might be a bit too small to see the sticker letters in these photos. 
I added a little pink bird to a stack of ironstone plates.
I love the scrapbook paper in pink toile, pink check and solids in pink and cream. The tags are tied to a piece of string with pink satin ribbon. The 'love words' are pretty in red and white glitter.
Both the little ceramic bird and the distressed THINK PINK sign were part of a Just Beachy blog giveaway I won from City.Cottage. 
 I love the soft pink and the chippy distressed finish.
'HUGS' to you my friends! Thanks for stopping by my little corner of the blog world. I have seen my blog visits grow steadily since this little blog started 3 years ago this month, but since January the pageviews and unique visits have increased substantially. I don't focus on this but I am amazed that so many people choose to visit Blue Clear Sky. I wish you all the best this upcoming week.

I'm sharing this with...
Cowgirl Up! #2 Party at The Farmhouse Porch and Cedar Hill Ranch


Vintage Industrial Wooden Spools

Hmm, industrial spools or industrial bobbins? Or maybe they are called both.
I do know that I love the patina and various sizes of each piece, and details like the red paint, green paint and metal ends. I often wonder the task they were made for and where these hard working pieces were put to use.   
They are not used nearly enough in my decor and were kind of hidden away in my hobby room/studio (plus two new ones I found recently.) 
I have been considering selling them in my etsy shop or trying to find a vintage sale to hook up with. We just don't have a lot of horizontal and open display surfaces here. For now I brought them down to our kitchen table to enjoy for a few days. 

I'm joining the following parties...
Saturday Nite Special at Funky Junk Interiors and SNS Vintage
Tabletop Tuesday at A Stroll Thru Life
Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style
Cowgirl Up Week at Cedar Hill Ranch