Friday, September 28, 2018

Ready for Fall While Looking Back at Summer

Well, here we are off on our
autumn adventures!

Though I am always up for adventures,
I am slow to let go of what came before.
 Do you enjoy looking back 
and savoring days gone by?
Like holding onto that good taste of something
that you just want to last forever?

And did I say slow?
I like to think of myself as living in
the moment...
Being present.
This is something that I have had 
to work at.  
My shutter painted mustard yellow. YAY for paint!

I'm a planner and I'm in love with life.
But I felt that I was missing so much
by trying to do too much and always
thinking ahead or of something else.
VERY distracted.
My daughter and 6 of my grandkiddos. Love them all to pieces.
 That's Escudilla mountain in the background.

My life is so very full of rich family times, just living, projects and change. Right now, I'm 
going through some big changes that I hope to
be able to share about later.
It's been a time filled with many emotions 
and physically exhausting. 
But I'm trusting God and He is
ALWAYS good.
These are just some of my memories that
I captured and a few photos of some of the beauty
of my summer. I hope that you don't mind if  I'm not up to speed with fall.
I wish I could keep up like other folks. I have
tried but it just doesn't work for me.
 I have many more garden pictures to share later.
The magic and calming of music that flows through my days and fills my heart is
a gift to me that I unwrapped as a very young child. It's melodies and harmonies have
filled so many cracks and crevices in my soul 
and changed my life forever. And now that goodness overflows and with God's
blessing, is touching the lives of others.
I am so grateful!

and sisterly LOVE!!!
with a dash of ornery ;)

I cannot resist faded petals. I have a collection of geranium 
flowerlets that I've been gathering all summer to be put in a jar.

Fading beauty is a part of life. Aging is a natural process that reveals a beauty all it's own. 
Being able to embrace it all as we pass through each season is a sign of a life richly lived. 
My geranium after wintering in my 
kitchen bay window.
It doubled in size this summer.
I had to cut it back to bring it back 
inside. I love their scent!
Jeff and I play with the group Bush Valley Rounders and the two
 of us have our own two person band called BackRoads. 
We were delighted to have our first summer ever booked from June to September.
We played nearly 30 times. It was a little daunting at times but we did it!
And we're so grateful for all of the support!

On the nights when we play music, the couples get out on the patio under the nights and dance. The merriment of the music rolls out across the valley to meet the mountain carrying the sounds to the elk, deer, foxes, bears, wildcats and coyotes.
 Making our yard and gypsy camp come alive
with flowers and plants is something that I look forward to every year. The refreshing that it 
brings to our spirits is a reward for 
the hours of energy, commitment and time 
devoted to it. During the hottest part of the
morning, I sometimes take a break under the pines
and spend a little time reading and resting.
Three cheers for going on 
a little different kind of adventure!!!
for family togetherness.
lots of clapping! ;)

This week, we will pack to leave for Ohio.
I hope to be hanging around on the blog and coming to say hello.

Now I must go taste the peanut butter pie
that Jeff brought me last evening.
Darbi's in Pinetop, Az...
I lost count of their restaurant awards!
And they have theee best pie on the mountain.

Have a lovely weekend. Please tell me of your
fall outings and adventures.

Thank you for being here!
Hugs and blessings,
Tamara xo

Friday, September 14, 2018

Brutus, The Garden Cat: ^^ An Impromptu Summer's End Photo Shoot

Happy Day to you.
It's a beauty of a Friday and we've been
watering and mowing.
Our monsoons are gone so we
are back at it with the hose and water cans.

But the temps are cooler now and it's a joy to 
be there just soaking up the 
last couple weeks of summer. 

Do you have adventures planned
for the weekend or are you going to choose
a quiet "last weekend"
of summer?  
I actually just realized...
It IS the last weekend of summer 2018!
Oh my...
Time to reflect on all of the loveliness
and wonder of those beautiful summer
days that have come and gone this year.

That will be my next post.

We are packing up to spend the weekend
with some of our kids and grandkids.
We've rented a large house on a little lake. 
It's only about 20 minutes from here.
It's going to be a beautiful weekend
for some fun and family time. 
No special  big plans. 
Of  COURSE it will be special.

* sleepovers together
*sit in the jacuzzi
*walks around the lake
*drink wine with grown-ups
*annnd... hot cocoa with the kids
(anytime is hot cocoa time)

Just some simple family time.
Isn't life filled with simple pleasures?

But before I go, I want to put a little
 post out and say hello to my lovely

Here are a few fun photos of
He's such a character.
One can almost read his mind here.
Moving in for a closer look...
And closer...
 Guess what happens next? 
 Out of all of the cats that we've ever had,
Brute is the nature lover.
Is it just me, or does he look love-struck?
And definitely mischievous! 
He cannot resist flowers and herbs.
When I have vases sitting  
 on the table, he will jump up
 to smell them and lay
by the vase. Of course, being on the
table is a no no! So I take his picture and 
then shoo him away. 
Whatta cutie!

I do need to go. I have packing to do 
and groceries to buy.

I want to wish you all a fabulous
last weekend of summer.
I hope it's a perfect way to end your
season. And don't we have so many
delightful things to look forward to 
in the fall?

Hugs and blessings to you and 
many thanks for coming by for a visit.
Tamara X

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Summer Magic Under the Apricot Tree

Happy September!
Can you believe that 
fall is just around the corner?

What a beauti-"full" summer it has been!
So many special times with family and friends.
Playing music and making memories
 that will last a lifetime.
Working hard to accomplish goals and
 keep commitments. 

Enjoying all that as well as
 allowing some hard
things to bring me closer to 
who I'm meant to be. 
Each page of my story is a collection of experiences and circumstances.
The part that I am thankful for is that no matter 
what those circumstances are, I get to 
have a part in how the end is written!

Summer is not complete 
without a little magic~
 Beautiful colors swirling together in the breeze.
Underneath the fluttering green leaves of the trees.
A dog of the gypsy kind lies protecting the door.
Pretty little rugs create the softest floor. 
Come on inside says the Gypsy cat.. 
Amidst the sparkles and flowers...
What is more magical than that?

The princess' invite you to come in for a spell.
Please come!  Please come! 
But sshhh..... don't tell. 
(Wink Wink!!)
 The light is dancing all around 
As if to say,  "Look what I've found!"
On her beautiful rug, the sweet princess sits.
Her thoughts faraway like a boat adrift.
The melodic wind chimes in the tree,
Singing in harmony, listen to me!
The sound is enchanting and 
the birds stop their singing,
While each circle of whiteness 
keeps on ringing.
This was such fun creating for my grand
daughters. The girls were enchanted
and loved having Liberty and Brutus
join us for this sweet time.

I hope your summer has been magical
and that you've tucked away some
unforgettable times to add to your story.

It's gorgeous here as we are in the midst 
of our summer rains.
 I will share some pictures.

We went to Phoenix for a little get
away and a concert. 
It was so inspiring.
When we returned, our grass
was very high and the house
needed attention.
 However, the mountains were calling 
so we went camping.
 The scenery is breathtaking
right now. And to sleep in a tent during thunderstorms is quite an experience!

There were kids, dogs and all kinds of 
big people huddling by the fire. We 
spent time making s'mores, 
building forts with sticks and
hanging sleeping bags to dry.

 Throughout the week, we travelled nearly
 800 miles! Some of these roads included 
some steep and narrow
mountain roads we trekked 
to sing at a wedding.

Where has your summer 
adventures taken you? I
 would love to hear about them and 
thank you for coming by
and sharing some of mine with me.

Blessings to you,

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Up-Cycling... A Crown Royal Box: From Trash to Gift Box

How is your summer going?
Are you enjoying the rain and the sunshine...
and a little of that carefree feeling 
that seems to settle around us during those hot, summer months?

Have you been getting lost in a 
good story and forgetting 
the time as you turn the pages of a good book?

I read The Pearl by John Steinbeck. 
It was very interesting. 
I decided a few years ago that I was going to
read some of the classics that I missed
while growing up. 
What kind of books do you like to read?

 It's been two months since I last posted!
It seems like so much longer.

Learning new songs and instrument
techniques takes up so much of my inside time. 
I've also been working on some song writing.
Hobbies and passions add so 
much richness to our lives, 
but we know that they're also a lot of work.

 Though I have been determined to 
read and play more this summer, 
there's a lot of plant love to 
pass around and that consumes 
a lot of my outdoor time.
But I'm not complaining.
I love it all! 

I've added a lot to the 
 my gypsy camp gardens this summer 
and I'm excited to show you!

I finished a little rock path and built a wall as well 
as doing some simple 
terracing for some new herbs.
I had to wait for our rains to 
begin to complete the rock work.
It was just too hot in June and July to work on
that kind of project. 
I took some pictures 
yesterday to share soon.

Today, I'm here to show you one of my
 trash to treasure projects.
This is honestly one of my favorite ways to create.
Taking something that would most
likely be thrown away and 
transforming it into something special.
Above, is the Crown Royal Box just waiting to be
all dressed up! 
Below, you see it's all finished.
I used a harlequin card stock for the front and top.
I wanted to make it dramatic and classy.
I made the flower and added
 a pretty, sparkly piece.
Sequins is something that my mom used often
in her craft projects. Don't you love
 how it shimmers in the light?
The Tim Holtz inspirational 
stamp sets are some of my favorites.
I enjoy the detail work and so often
get lost in the process and just enjoy... 
It's usually late and quiet and I
have my Spotify music playing.

I have the idea that I might use it as a gift box 
along with some black and white or even red, tissue paper.

I nearly always have company... 
Liberty our dog, Sonny the Dragon or
Prim, my sweet grandkitten.

Miss Primrose is sweetly napping. 
She is anything but Prim.
I've never seen such a wild, fearless
little creature. She's probably 
dreaming of something
mischievous to do when she awakes!

She loves to sleep on my computer. I guess the warmth is comforting. I had to start closing
it though. One time she activated the voice over
feature and it took me awhile to figure out to
turn it off.  She also managed to turn the music
on several times!

I am on track now to share some more
 posts and will be back soon to visit.

I hope you are enjoying the last days
of this magical season.  
All the seasons are filled with wonder and
are something to look forward to.

Have a lovely rest of your week and
 thank you for coming by.

Blessings and hugs...
Tamara X

Linking up to join some friends!
Cooking and Crafting

Friday, June 15, 2018

A Gathered Table Scape


Today we are celebrating clouds and 
possible rain this week....

As well as our sweet
daughter's 31st birthday.
She and her older sister and I
went on a little outing
for dinner, shopping and a movie.
We went to see Oceans 8.
Oh my... 
What a fun chic flick.
We try to celebrate the entire week.
Life passes by so quickly and I believe
in being very purposeful.

And a cloudy day?
 It's like a holiday for us around here especially considering this drought.
To clarify...

Ours and surrounding counties have been declared
a disaster area and we are on severe
restrictions. We're not even permitted 
to mow our lawns because of sparks.
No smoking outside.

On to happier things :) and there
are always happy things!

Like birthdays and flowers blooming
and little butterflies flitting about.

And a table that is full of color, glittery sparkles
and fun surprises for little eyes to find.

This may have the appearance of Easter but it's
actually just for spring with some things that I just 
grabbed because kids light up
when they see it all!
You can see what I used...
The vintage bottles and salt and pepper shakers
were some of my favorites.
I so enjoy using ordinary things
for something other than it's
intended use.

What about you? 

What kind of treasures do you enjoy using
when you're creating? And it doesn't 
have to be decorating your table.
I hope you're doing well and
taking some time to keep yourself grounded
and in touch with you.

I read something this morning that
got me to thinking about what
we give ourselves permission for.

Do you give yourself a lot of grace?
We all need it.
I know all too well how to put 
myself in a box and to criticize 
what I do and how I do it. 
and even what I fail to do.

 Are you allowing yourself to be you and
even embracing who you are?
I am hopelessly devoted to
getting this right. Making room for my
real self. The one who makes mistakes
and is always learning. She's creative and
messy and sometimes loses her way.
There's growing and accepting and then
when I think I have it figured out,
I change! Can you relate to any of that?

One thing that I'm learning to do is to be more
open and honest with myself and others.
I am back after taking a very long break.
The clouds were so inviting and the temperatures
so forgiving that I wandered outside to
(more like raced before the sun came back out ;)
get some more of my plants in the ground.

And to do some more rock work
on the little wall that I'm building
in the the Gypsy Camp gardens.
I will share some pictures.

I have my eye on a couple of climbing roses
 in town and the Virginia 
Creeper wintered so well through
the drought and the cold that we are going to
plant a couple more to add some greenery.

We must whenever we can as we are
surrounded by white grasses (dead) and dirt!
We do have some
Juniper and Pinon 
trees that are very gracious
 to give us shade.

 I have planted several herbs in the past couple
of days. Annual and perennial.
And I found the most adorable
Dwarf English Boxwood. So far it's doing well.
Fingers crossed!

I also had to take some time to dust and clean
and get things in order. I do so enjoy a tidy home. With the season of playing outside, it takes a little more effort to keep up.
It's time to go rest up for this evening.
As we are playing music tonight at one of our favorite places. I get to play my new pink guitar that Jeff bought me for our Anniversary in April.
Eeep!! Doesn't a 
Shabbi Gypsy girl need a pink guitar?
I will share some pictures soon.

I do hope that
you have a lovely, lovely weekend creating and
enjoying just being you right where you are
and of course
celebrating the wonderful
fathers in your life.

Here's a fun quote for summer...


Blessings and hugs to you~