Friday

Chair Back Graphics

Coming soon.......... yes really.  
The never ending dining room redo is nearing completion.
There is only one "o" in correspond and two "r"s.  
It's spelled wrong.
You can corr, I'm going to coo.
I am not changing it.

I have been working on the
six chair back graphics 
and deciding which transfer method to use.  

The drop cloth has been washed and cut, 
ready to replace this velour type fabric.

All the chair back tacks have been removed.  
All 600 of them. 


 They will NOT be polished to return them to their copper luster.
Mostly because I don't want copper luster.

The vintage bronze patina works for me, since truthfully......
there is no way in helll
I am polishing 600 little tack tops.

The chairs have all been painted and waxed and sanded.


The seat bottoms have been patiently waiting for the backs to be ready.  

Soon they shall wait no more.




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Wednesday

Shake Rag Alley, Mineral Point Wisconsin


 My closet at the Mineral Point Hotel

Remember my dining room chairs?  Yeah, well they're still not done.  I'd work on them today but my family is crying there is no food to eat.  I'd do chairs tomorrow but it's thrifting day.  Friday?  Ok, Friday it is.  Forget about the 10" tall grass that needs mowing and the 10 FOOT high pile of laundry.  Or those dishes that I can't seem to get washed so the kitchen is clean.

If you can forget those things for me, I'd be happy too forget them as well.

 The Mineral Point Hotel, Mineral Point Wisconsin

The story is that I have been out of town twice in the last two weeks for a total of 7 days.  All that does is make more laundry with less time to do it.

 Stairway of the Mineral Point Hotel

Everyone knows if you have a trip, there is one day preparing to go and one day re-acclimating after arriving home, so if I count in those additional 4 days, then I've been worthless around the house for 11 of the past 14 days.

(Whether I count those additional 4 days or not I've been worthless around the house.)

Lobby of the Mineral Point Hotel

Have you ever toured Wisconsin?  It's more than just cheese, although if you want cheese there is plenty to be had.  And beer.  And wine.  I lost count of the breweries, wineries and cheese stores, and I visited my fair share of both.  Wisconsin is a beautiful state and I wanna go back there, if for no other reason than the beer.  And cheese.  And wine.

Leinenkugel Beer Crates holding tourist information

Our trip started out in the northern part of the state where my little buddy Janel from Nellie Bellie lives, and ended in the southern part.  I have not figured out how to combine traveling with people who don't know I blog and also visiting bloggers, so I peeked in her windows on my way by, ate a piece of cheese and downed a beer in her honor. 

Bessies Blend, an award winner from Carr Valley Cheese, and Spotted Cow from New Glarus Brewery to be exact.

There are so many little towns in Wisconsin that have a story and ooze with charm. The town of Mineral Point is no exception.  They have a very active arts council that has helped oversee a revitalization to their quaint downtown.  And they have done it very well.


 Shake Rag Alley Center for the Arts hosts visiting artists who conduct hands on workshops.  Say you wanna learn about blacksmith-ing, this is the place for you.  Jewelry making.  Hone your writing skills.  Bent willow furniture making.  Photography.  Gardening.  Community plays.  Just check out their list of classes.  Antique shops, entertainment, trails, restaurants, B&B's, this town has it all and the population hasn't even hit 3,000.

Have you heard of the Little Free Library?  Take a book, leave a book.  Cute little book stands like this scattered around town.  We traveled with friends, and George is a writer so he was intrigued with this concept.

Want some wine?  They've got that too.  Local and organic.


There is also a brew pub, the Brewery Creek Restaurant, where I had the best burger of my life.  The brewery is also a B&B.  I was going to take a picture of my plate of food like good bloggers do, but I was running out of reasons to give our travel companions for why I was taking photos of odd little things.

FINE... the truth is that I ate it all before I even considered taking a picture.  Do you feel better for forcing me into that confession?  I had the specialty fries too.

The pub brews it's own beers.

View of a room entry at the Mineral Point Hotel

The owners of the Mineral Point Hotel also help run Shake Rag Alley.  I noticed the hotel is for sale, and I'm guessing the way the town is booming with shops and tourists that the owners can't keep up with both.


Our huge bathroom.  No I did not take a long, relaxing soak in the tub.  I'm not sure why, other than the bed was so comfortable I wanted to sleep.

We discovered so many interesting towns in Wisconsin, if you get a chance to go, do it.   Mineral Point was by far the highlight of our little tour.  Stop by Shake Rag Alley and find out how they were able to turn the town into a thriving little artsy mecca, then tour the town.

*All photos taken by a crummy little point and shoot camera loaned to me by my daughter because it fit so nicely in my purse.




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Monday

The Ducks Have Names

While I was away for four days my daughter patiently waited for all your suggestions on what to name her ducks, or the duckens as a certain 2 year old refers to them.


She filled their old outdoor cast iron tub, let them swim, and walked them around the yard.  And like any proud duck mom, she took photos of them.


She learned they like dandelions.  So she put that word on her list of possible names.
Dandelion and Delilah were front runners.


I barely got in the door Sunday evening and she said "lets name the ducks".

I said lets not.  Tomorrow, Monday.

So Monday rolled around and I got half ready to go buy plants and took a nap instead.  That is till she plopped down on my bed and said, "it's Monday, lets name the ducks".


I went to my blog and composed a list of all your suggestions for her to look at, which of course provided some laughs as well as last minute off shoot suggestions by me. 

There was a front runner, a name I knew she was going to like.  It sort of rolled off the tongue with the name of her other duck, Clyde, plus had personality.

So with one name down I proceeded to continue my nap as she read me the top 100 Duck names from the web.  I listened with one ear open till she said, "that's it" and sounded firm.

There was Phoebe, Delilah, Honey, and Pearl.  Ethel, Jemima, and about 5 others she really liked.  But in the end there were only two ducks, which meant just two names that she had to choose.

So I would like to introduce you to........


That means Tina from WhatWeKeep will be receiving one of Beth's sparkly hand made cake testers for suggesting the name Clementine. 

Maybe now that the task of duck naming has been completed I can get back to things like completing a dining room..........


The duckens have joined the blog hop @FreshEggsDaily From The Farm Blog Hop

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Tuesday

Name The Duckens

This post really is for the birds.  

It's all that it's quacked up to be.  All that and a sack of seed.

Nameless new Ducken
One son has chickens and one daughter has duckens.  What is a ducken you might ask?  It is a combination of how a certain 2 year old refers to chickens and ducks; duckens.

And two of them are living at my house.  Two Duckens, not two 2 year olds.

Klous & Clyde as babies
Clyde and Klous arrived last year this time, and this year we have a problem. 

Klous died a couple months ago.

That's not the problem.  Well... actually it is sort of.

That's Klous there on the left in his better days, back when he and Clyde used to plot how to crap on my porch together.



Don't worry I wouldn't really eat them.  There is now a nice duck home and they leave my porch alone.  Well, Klous leaves it alone since he's gone to the big pond in the sky.
 
The problem is that since Klous has been gone, Clyde has been lonely.  So lonely in fact he has become one with my sons chickens.  Clyde spends too much time with the girls in the hen house and now Clyde thinks he is a chicken.  He mimics the chickens, and I fear this is causing psychological issues with his identity. 

So in effect, Clyde really has become a ducken!  I will probably have to use my vacation money to hire the Duck Whisperer to help him.


Like any good mama bird, I took my 22 yr. old duck queen, along with a 5 yr. old and a 2 yr. old and off to the farm store we went where a fresh batch of baby Pekin's was waiting for us.

My daughters friend met us there with her dad and they got four ducks.  Word on the street is that duck eggs make baked goods fluffier.

I wouldn't know about that fluffy thing, Clyde and Klous never produced any eggs, but I'll tell 'ya my son's poultry is being good to us.....


See that?  Those brown ones there, next to my giant bottle of ketchup, started arriving just after I bought a dozen at the store Sunday morning.  Guess fresh eggs was my Mothers Day gift.  I think I need to learn better quiche making skills.


So in honor of all my fine feathered friends, and in memory of Klous, I turned a bird seed bag into a BIRD SEED BAG.  Did you just roll your eyes on that one?  I said at the beginning that this post was all that and a bag of seed.

I wasn't joking.

Because if feeding chickens and ducks wasn't enough I do like to keep the Robins and Bluebirds happy too.


I walked by the plain sack that already held my bird seed - which mostly the squirrels eat - and 5 minutes later with the help of stencils, black craft paint, and broken pottery as a dabbing tray,  I had a bird seed bag.

I also had bird seed all over my dining room table.


Fastest craft ever.  So fast I was inspired to pick up 3 new canvas bags for a quarter each at a garage sale. 

Anyhow, the two new ducks need names.  The 5 yr. old suggested Scratchy and French Fry.  I offered up PteroDUCtyl, (get it - like the flying dino bird?) and Marshmellow since they grow up to be big white birds.  I also mentioned Kirby and Electrolux. They laughed at me.  Brawns ideas were just as bad as mine, I guess we ran out of good names a few kids ago.

All this bird talk will see me flying the coop.  I'm heading out of town and when I get back the family is gonna vote on names for our own little duck dynasty.

So what say you?  My daughter wants two female names or gender neutral ones, so what would you suggest?  I will add your suggestions to the list we will vote on.  If she actually uses your suggestion I'll have a prize for the winner(s).  Like maybe one of the awesome cake testers she makes.......

Sample of Beth's jeweled cake testers


I mean seriously...... you've read our suggestions.  Your odds of thinking up the winning name(s) are good.




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Friday

I See Benches

You know we own an old building right?  It was once a barber shop with an upstairs apartment where the owners lived.

Forever and ever they lived there.  And nothing changed, they lived very simply.

Their two sons had one small room with a bunk bed.  The bed was stained in a 1950's blonde wood color, old but in pristine condition.


For a brief time the bunk bed went to live at our oldest sons house where he painted it black.  When he was done with it (because he made two new beds for two exceptionally adorable kids) the beds came back to our garage.

There were two head boards, and two foot boards.  When it returned to us I no longer saw old head and foot boards, I saw four benches.

I blame Gail at MyRepurposedLife for what I saw, because seriously she can make a bench out of any headboard ever made.  I take that back, she can make a bench out of anything, period.


The first bench was sized for an open spot on our front porch.  Old wood was used from the junk wood pile, making this redo cost zero.... unless you count the price of the building that came with the bunk bed.

I painted it outside instead of in my entry way, and I was as surprised by this fact as anyone.  Yes I was in my jammies and had one ear tuned to the South in case the UPS man were to drive in.

I stained/and/or/painted every slat slightly different shades of whatever we had around, then I did a wash of dark stain, wiped it off and varnished it.  If you look to the right in the above photo you will see two sample pots of paint.


Let me say right now I don't like waiting for varnish to dry.



Until I get to the nursery for some porch flowers there is one outdoor pillow to keep the bench company.  The weatherman says only 38* tonight.   Geeze!


The camera caught an apparition on the right.  See it?  The hazy smokey white shape?  Or are you like me and see benches?

Now the UPS man has a place to set my packages.

Vintage Headboard bench is linking on up at:


It's Party Time @Three Mango Seeds 
Wow Us Wednesdys @Savvy Southern Style 
Budget Decorating Ideas @Creative Cain Cabin 
Time to Sparkle @The Gunny Sack 
Project Inspired @Cupcakes and Crinoline 
Creatively Tuesday @The Rustic Pig 
Show and Share @Southern Lovely 

Proud to have the headboard bench featured at:
The Rustic Pig


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Sunday

Yonder at the Ranch

Red food coloring in water because we sampled the soda all gone b4 pics

Where's Bliss?

Stop over at Kirb Appeal and check out Kirby's new feature, Women Who Blog.  She is interrogating yours truly and I'm just saying she might have asked me some exclusive questions, and you don't want to miss finding out what I really think of bead board.

Then...... after you learn my inner most bead board thoughts, please stop in and say hello to Angie at Knick Of Time.  I have a guest post at her place where I took a cheapo dollar garage sale crate and turned it into something cute to store our beverages. 

Cheapo Garage Sale Crate

There is no snow predicted next week in Minnesota.  That's the best news I've had in a while so I might go outside and paint something.  Or maybe, just maybe I'll finish my dining room chairs.

I said MAYBE!




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From time to time there might be a written review of services or products on this blog for which Bliss Ranch may or may not have received that service or product for free. Receiving a product or service for free or at a discount will never dictate what is written on this blog or guarantee a favorable review. All opinions here belong to Bliss Ranch and Bliss Ranch alone. Bliss Ranch is not monetarily compensated to write anything on this blog... period!