When Camera Duty Calls

This weekend I will be putting my doggies to the ground and if they don't howl too loud after all the miles I put on them, I will be back on Sunday needing a foot massage.

I have a job to do that even I think is pretty cool (you can read more about it here).  I will be taking photo's of stars.  Yes really.  Not the kind in a galaxy far far away, the country kind that sing songs like 'Some Beach' and 'Independence Day'.

Growing up in California - the San Fernando Valley to be exact - and working in Beverly Hills, I really don't get star struck.  You will never find me mixing business with pleasure and asking for any autographs and it doesn't matter that in real life I would probably have my radio tuned to classic rock - I can still appreciate a good country tune especially when it's belted out by someone easy on the eyes.

But I do Google recent pictures of who I have to stalk.  It wouldn't be good to take pictures of Willie Nelson only to find out it was some other old dude in a bandana!

It starts out like this.....
stacks of chairs waiting to be lined up in rows in the VIP seating area in front of the stage.

The back of the stage will be bustling with stage crew, tons of equipment, roadies, band members, their friends, and other celebrities who snag backstage passes because of who they are.  I will wander among them, trying not to look out of place.  HA!

I have no tattoos, no ten gallon hat.  No cowboy boots or beer goggles.  I won't be wearing any Daisy Dukes or tube tops, and honestly most of the people I see wearing those shouldn't be wearing them either!  In fact based on what I see folks wearing I shouldn't worry for one minute what I have on or looking out of place!

I'll make sure to take some photos of the interesting people who pay to be there not just the beautiful ones who get paid to be there.  There is a difference and I know you want to see it.

Some of the time I'll be in front of this long metal rail that separates the adoring fans on one side from the highly paid singers on the stage.  They sacrifice the paparazzi by putting the media pit in between. The rail might keep me safe from being squished by adoring fans but if it doesn't I'll be the first to perish.

I will also spend a lot of time standing watching..... right behind that wood deck rail on the top right of the above photo.  It's not as high as the tower and I don't have to climb to get there.  Not even steps since it is just a big ramp for rolling equipment.

This spot isn't the best vantage point to get pictures anyway unless I was 6 feet tall, so for part of the time I will throw caution to the wind and roam among the crowd.  I will climb the tower and fly in the plane for aerials.  I will have beer spilled on me, elbows in my face, and my equipment knocked more than once resulting in photos that can't be used.  My feet and back will ache, my hair will look like crap or may be covered with a baseball hat if it's really bad.  I'll be hot, smelly, approaching epic crabbiness and by days end the only thing I will be thinking about is a shower.

All the while laughing with my bag lady at people as they pass.

The majority of the crowd is made up of people who look like this.  
People who don't get free tickets because they know someone, 
will have to line up at the gates with their chairs waiting for the opening bell.

Then they will run like the wind to get the best spot - the closest that they can in general seating.  It is survival of the fittest, ummm, or fastest.  And I will take pictures and move out of the way so they don't run me over, even though standing next to me are cops and security laughing at the running people.

There is about a thousand people behind those first two men at gate #2, 
and they could care less if they flip me into the air as they run by.

Soon the running fans will want to fill their tank with beverage and the taps below 
will be flowing and everything will be right in their world. 

If it rains some of them will play in the mud.  The crowd will have a good time no matter what.
If it rains on me, my equipment and I will hide till it is done.
No rain please.  It messes my hair even worse.

I will try to peek in the dressing room coolers to see what the beautiful people like to eat when they are on the road.  These are not Hollywood types, there will not be any beluga or pate.  Usually it's fruit and fancy waters.

Eventually a hush will come over the area and the crowd that swells to 15,000 will stand to watch, or squint depending on where they are, as one of the beautiful people 
grabs a geetar, takes to the stage and does their country thang with a little country twang.  

And I will hope to get that million dollar photograph out of the thousands taken.
Or at least enough that are not blurry because someone knocked over the 5'2" paparazzi.

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Pitcher Full of Sunshine

Flowers By Bliss Ranch Daughters

 When I see a project I like from a fellow blogger that I actually think I can do.... I pin it to my "Stuff to Make" Pinterest board.  I may never get around to all the stuff I've got pinned, but it's fun when I do one. 

Like the above project from Jaime at Crafty Scrappy Happy.
When I read her post I thought HEY I can do that because I have the exact same stamps she used.  I've had mine for about 13 years - purchased them for making baby announcements when #6 was born and probably haven't used them since.

Now I just had to come across something suitable for stamping on.  

And if that something suitable happens to be a white tin pitcher similar to Jaime's well so be it.

I got out my stamps, (I really did, not sure why they aren't in the picture) and my Distress Ink stamp pad and thought about what to put on it.  

I know everyone uses You Are My Sunshine for things, but it is a song close to my heart.  

My dear daddy used to sing it all the time to my momma 
and I can't hear it or see the words without thinking of him.  

I also had another pitcher that I debated not painting because I sort of liked the faded rusty look it had, but I wanted the whites to match.  I had one letter R from my first failed attempt at using letter stencils. 

Both of the pitchers are in my kitchen window.  I used one for some fresh lilacs last week, and the other is holding some paper flowers my daughters have been making.

Salvaged DIY Whites @FunkyJunkInteriors

Sadly linking to my last Newbie Party @ DebbieDoos 
 CraftOmaniac Monday @Craft-O-Maniac
Sunday Stop @ Joy2Journey 
Elizabeth & Co. Be Inspired Link Party 
CowGirl Up @ Cedar Hill Ranch

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Sammy in the Rain

Our Memorial weekend is probably going to be a wash out, 
as in rain every day at least off and on.  
Maybe fire up the grill for some fast meat that goes on a bun 
only to whisk it into the house when it's cooked.  
My dad would of grilled, a little rain wouldn't of stopped him.  
He was happy to have the freedom to do it, even in the rain.
Most of the kids are harmless these days - I've had this pitchfork poked in the ground by the mudroom door for about 15 years - back when you did take your life 
into your hands entering a home with 5 (at that time) kids.  
I felt people should be warned.  The kids had the freedom to run, play and be heard.
I have had to touch up the paint a couple times on the wood flag. 

We also have a huge sign Brawn made when our oldest 
and two of his buddies were in the Marines.  
It says.....
"Land of the Free Because of the Brave".
We hang it on a tree by the road (photo another time, it's raining 'ya know!).
Our oldest joined 4 months after 9/11 while he was in college.
He finished his last few months of college, got his degree 
and headed off to do his part.

This weekend I have the freedom to be eating this............

The Grilled Pepper Jack Cheese Sammy

6 months ago I discovered this sandwich at the blog Uncluttered Lifestyle, which caught my eye as that's where I felt I was at with my needed some uncluttering.  Since then I've spent more time hauling junk into my house and learning how to work with it (thanks to all you talented bloggers) 
than I have spent hauling stuff out.  
Every week Iesha inspires me to free myself and unclutter something, 
even if it's just going through a makeup drawer  or junk cabinet.  

But this weekend because of rain, I'm just inspired to eat.

This is my very favorite sammy.  It has deli meat, tomato, grilled onions, 
pepper-jack cheese, tastes great on any interesting bread you enjoy, 
and I add avocado to mine which is sort of like the frosting on the cake for me.  
You can find her recipe here

Remember those lucky ducks Klous and Clyde?  
They are getting really big and don't mind this weather at all.  
My daughter has trained them to come when she calls.  
She also had to build them their own pond.  
When she can train them not to leave duck doo on the patio 
they can swim in the pond back there. 

I guess since we won't be enjoying the patio this weekend 
Klous & Clyde could maybe have the freedom to do so.  
The rain should wash the doo away.

Yes the land of the free because of the brave.  
We don't take any of it for granted at Bliss Ranch.

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The Green Grass of Home

We have a yard and "areas".  A few yards really, and we refer to all the areas around here in various ways so we know just the spot we are talking about.

There is the back yard, the bottom back yard, the front side yard, the front yard, the yard on the side, the far yard, the down the driveway yard, the back shed, over by the basketball court area, the big field on the hill, the dry marsh, the woods, over by the chickens, the garden, and the back field.  I can use these terms and usually direct Brawn to a specific area for whatever the need is.  The kids I might have to draw a map and physically take them to where I'm talking about if it involves working.

Little Shed
Bird Houses on Post

In the backyard we have this little shed, not to be confused with the big shed in the back or the potting shed in the front side yard.  In the little shed we park the lawnmowers, bikes and sand toys over winter.  Next to it are a couple birdhouses on some old deck posts that are inhabited every year.  Everything is due for a painting, and I will probably just use something I already have.

I would love to turn my little shed into something like this.........

Or this one over at Thistlewood Farm that Kari calls her Art House....
I would love an art shed.

The hostas next to the back yard shed got off to an early growing season.  I hadn't even got rid of last years long dead parts before the hostas were huge.

Also in the back yard is a patio and pond area where the hostas thrive.  Some of them were scheduled to be removed before they got too big.  Hmmmm, I think we missed the timing on that.


A few years ago I was sitting on the patio looking around and I wondered what I could do to hide the big 'ol ugly air conditioning unit.  We had a pile of old deck posts, so Brawn whipped me up a form with two panels and I smashed some china and stained glass along with some mirror and made a big mosaic to hide it.

Mosaic Air Conditioner Screen Cover

In the front side yard we have what used to be a play house.  Five years ago I turned it into a potting shed, but there is no longer anything that resembles potting or garden supplies inside.  Brawn has taken it over for work supplies.  I am serving an eviction notice to his supplies.  On my to-do list is turn it back into a playhouse for The Grands.

 What you can't see hanging on the left side is a potting ledge where I inconveniently pot plants.  Most of my plants in pots are in the back yard, the potting shed is in the front side yard.  Also on the to-do list is make a potting bench that I can keep on the back deck.

Potting Shed
This old tiki torch oil lamp is by the pool in the back yard just waiting to light up some fun summer nights.

Easy Care Landscape
In the front yard is this area between the two entries to the house.  The tree is a dwarf Japanese Maple and the long tall spikey things will soon be sporting beautiful stargazer lilies.  I bought 6 bulbs for .99¢ a few years ago and needed a place to plant them.  I stuck them in the ground here and this is where they stayed.  There used to be a beautiful birch tree in this spot but it got too big for the area.

Front Porch Gone Green
 My front porch flowers were just planted and consist of ferns, marigolds and impatiens.  The pots were in need of paint.  They used to be pale yellow.  Gwen at The Bold Abode painted some pots which gave me the idea to paint mine.  First I tried pastel blue, not at all right for my porch, so the other color spray paint I had was green.  I wish the storm door could go, but we get some nasty weather in the winter.  Tomorrow I will take out the window and put in the screen.
Old Metal Junk Becomes Porch Flower Vase
I have a lot of other "yards" and "areas" to take pictures of.  Today I noticed some of my wild roses are blooming.  Seems early to see those and they look real healthy.  As of today our garden is planted.  There is always a never ending list of outside chores.  I have flowers on my table that need to be planted.  Tomorrow?


Linking the Mosaic Air Conditioner Cover to:
Tuesday's Treasures @ MyUncommonSliceOfSuburbia
  Newbie Party @ DebbieDoos 

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Wood Scrap Art

Wood Scrap Art and A Poured Concrete Top

Wood Scrap Wall Art

Our family room got an update a couple of Christmases ago. 

The males, (ok, really it was me) wanted a new television because glare from all the windows makes watching the old one impossible during the day. 

Not that I watch much tv in daylight or nightlight, but when a special little boy wants to watch Power Rangers, I'm not telling him no.

                                 The Big 'Ol Dinosaur                                     

The big-dino was built to house the big-dino-tv, obsolete these days huh?  The cabinet above it stores more junk than you can shake a stick at. 

And I'm a short stick. 

I couldn't reach the top shelves in the cabinet to do more than pop in a cd, if I could find or reach the cd in the first place.

After Christmas the new tv sat on a toy box for a few months till I ordered a hanging bracket for the wall. 

I sort of liked that the toys were held captive and not on the floor. 

When the old tv cabinet left, it also left an empty space above the new tv that I was going to have to put my thinking cap on to fill.  Light pours in this area till the sun leaves the sky - makes for a bright happy space (hard to take photos in).

Poured concrete top
Brawn decided to reuse the old wood from the tall cabinet to make a shorter one and do a poured concrete top with a rough edge for a rustic look. 

That's his style.  Rustic, not rough.

This was totally his baby - he didn't consult me, a rare occurrence and one that is usually not a good idea.

Rustic concrete edge
He stained the concrete with acid stain in some earthy colors and dabbed some on the edges.  The chiseled edge mimics one you might see on granite.

Shrunk down with the same wood
Everything here is reused from the original cabinet, except the new concrete top and the cabinet wire, but that's left over from a chicken coop.  Inside is a Wii, all the Wii games and controllers, stereo, and I forget what else.  If I ever make it purdy I'll show 'ya.

The original idea was to have the sides look like the ends of vintage wood crates with
interesting vintage product advertising, stained onto the wood.  

That was to be my job.  I haven't got that far, and between you and me, I don't know when I will.

Notice the cute pillow on that little chair?  Linda from It All Started With Paint sent it to me.  I was a lucky duck recipient of the Pass It On Project
I have been eying up lots of blogland ideas and decided in the interest of no cost, to use what I had to fill the area above.  I pinned an idea from Sweet Serendipity as inspiration.

I would love to say I raided Brawns well placed wood scrap bin, but really all I had to do was look on the floor under his saw and brush away sawdust to find scrap pieces I could use.  Our garage is famous for it's mess.

I set to work.  I used a combo of stencils, stickers, or made my own letters to paint everything.  The Grandpa & Grandma sign was a gift, and it seemed like a perfect fit.

I arranged and rearranged and finally got an order I liked.  We ran a piece of tape down the middle, with a line down the center of the tape, so it would all line back up once the first piece was nailed to the wall.  At about 10:00 at night because I was anxious.

I painted the wall with the paint can closest to me, which was still sitting out 
from a project a month ago.  It's the same color as on the outside of the front door here.  Dutch Boy, "Earth Matters".

The wall is empty no more and the leaves are green outside once again.

Linking the Scrapy Wood up to:

Saturday Night Special Reclaimed Wood @FunkyJunkInteriors
The Mother Lode @ I Gotta Create 
Crafty, Scrappy, Happy Me @ CraftyScrappyHappy
Pin'inspiration Thursday @ JanesAdventuresInDinner 
Inspired Creations @ Embracing Change 
Party Time @ 36th Avenue 
Open House Party @ No Minimalist Here 

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