Wednesday, September 29, 2010

To Tell the Truth

Suzanne from the wonderful blog, Meridian Road, passed this award along to me this week:

I apparently have a rep now for spinning tales.  Thanks Suzanne! I will do my best.  I am to tell five stories about myself that are lies and one that is the absolute truth.  Hmmmmmm.  I have quite a few RL friends and relatives who read this blog who will make this a difficult thing to pull off.  I will reveal the one true thing over the weekend and then pass this award on to a few willing vicitms.


 My first job out of college was working in the art department right here in Orlando at The Orlando Sentinel.  One month I was awarded "Employee of the Month" and got my own parking space for the month and a $1,000 bonus.  I also got to go to lunch with the publisher and rehearsed what I would say to him during lunch for a week.  Of course I said nothing because I was terrified.


I was and still am a Rocker Chick. While growing up in Canada I was not your usual teeny-bopper, David Cassidy-loving, Bobby Sherman-swooning, Donny Osmond-please marry me type.  Because I had brothers who were so much older than me I was exposed early on to The Beatles, The Stones, Creedance.  My good friend, Jane, in Toronto can actually attest to this because she too had older brothers.  She and I would rock out together in her basement with the speakers blasting.  My first concert was an Aerosmith concert in Tampa, Florida when I was in 10th grade - awesome!  In fact, I was the one who introduced my husband to the finer aspects of the rock music world. (Not that HE would ever admit that)


I picked a guy up at Clearwater Beach once.  Junior year of high school.  Beach every weekend  with friends.  I wore glasses, but would take them off at the beach so I would look "cooler", just like I used to in elementary school until my dad found out when he drove by at recess one day.  My friends and I would walk up and down the shoreline looking for action.  One day a really good looking guy started walking with us and was directing most of his conversation towards me.  Little did he know I couldn't even see him (yes, I was guessing he was good looking - hey he TALKED to me didn't he?).  He wanted my phone number and I made him guess it number by number.  He memorized it and called me later that night.  In the course of the conversation he asked me to go out to the movies that Friday night.  I also learned he was 26!  I told him I was 19 (I was 16).  It was my first date.  I told my parents he was a 21 year old college student I'd met at the beach.  Awkward parental meeting.  Awkward date meeting since I HAD to wear my glasses in order to function properly.  He had a moustache and we went to a forgettable Disney movie.  I cannot remember his name, but it's written down somewhere in my journals.  Never saw him again. 


I almost became a professional water skiier!  Those who know me, know I have always been up for anything, especially athletic!  I mastered the sport of snow skiing in my years spent in Canada.  Every winter my parents would take my brothers and I up to one of the many ski resorts in Northern Ontario and we would all hit the slopes.  I started out as a three year old riding on the back of my older brother's skis and eventually graduated to my own little pair.  Several years later I was hitting the big slopes with my brothers.  When my dad retired and we moved to Florida I had to find a different outlet for my love of skiing.  My dad suggested channeling my talents into water skiing.  He had bought a boat and spent many a weekend dutifully towing me behind in my beloved Cypress Garden skiis.  When I met my husband in college I found that we had this sport in common and when we would spend the weekend at his grandfather's lakehouse we honed our skills further.  Gramps would pull us for hours while Mr. Tennis and I would try out new skills and tricks.  He learned to barefoot, but I never could quite do that.  My specialty was jumping the wake and doing a turn in the air.  We even toyed with the idea of trying out for the Sea World Water Skiing squad when we moved to Orlando after college.


Bill O'Reilly is my homeboy.  I cannot get enough of this man!  I find his take on everything from politics to pop culture to be spot on and I DVR his show everyday.  I've read all his books and even stood in line at Border's a couple of years ago to get him to personally sign his latest book at the time.  When I finally got up to the table where he sat, pen in hand, I could only blurt out "I love you Bill, please sign my book".  I had envisioned myself saying something so totally witty that he would surely engage me in a memorable conversation that he would then refer to during one of his shows.  I just find that he puts perfectly into words my thoughts no matter what the situation or subject.


In my lifetime I have owned 6 cats, 4 dogs, 38 hamsters, 3 rabbits, 2 hedgehogs, 1 tortoise, 1 green iguana, 5 hermit crabs, 2 birds,  and countless fish.  That's why I wanted to study Zoology in college, but switched to Advertising after realizing I was in with all the pre-med students and would never survive the "weed-out" courses.

So, there you have it!  Everything you always wanted to know about me.  BUT...... which one is the truth?  Take your best guess and I will give you the truth this weekend.  And no peeking at the comments until you've posted!  Some of you know me better than others - or do you?????

Monday, September 27, 2010

How Do You Like My "New" Desk?

This past weekend was spent cleaning up Mr. Tennis' office in preparation for an upcoming busy selling season for him.  We purged and streamlined and he ended up with a nicely organized office space and I ended up with an old desk he had in there. I found the desk for his office about 10 years ago at a local thrift store and paid $50 for it. It was perfect for Mr. T at the time because it has so much top space and he could really spread out.  Over time he decided he wanted a more streamlined look, so the desk became a slightly cumbersome storage unit for him.

Now I have it in my little space:

I cleaned it up with some wood cleaner and gave it a coat of wood restorer.  It's still pretty banged up, especially the top, but that's one of the things I like about it.

It has wonderfully long drawers that have a really nice looking grain on the outside:

No, I don't have the key to the lock on the top drawer, but if I did I could lock all three as they are connected by some metal contraptions inside. It must have had it's origins in an office setting as it has some curious traits.  This one I understand:

I had one of those while working as a secretary many moons ago at the local newspaper.  A handy slide out for when the paperwork becomes overwhelming and you need just one more surface to put a file.

But, this:

This I don't understand. (Bumby is doing a fly-by inspection to the left there).  Mr. Tennis and I have been puzzled about this removable center part of the desk from day one.  Any guesses?

So, I'm pretty happy with my new improved and vast desk space.  I will have to work on some accessories and replacing the desk chair. 

 I've been on the lookout for an old wooden one that swivels and rolls on wheels - you've seen the kind.  But I haven't - yet.  And those who know me, know I won't pay over a certain price, just like my dining room chairs.  I'll hold out for the perfect opportunity.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Aged to Perfection in Old Winter Garden, Florida

I found this bill payment slot on the outside of an old building in Old Winter Garden, Florida and decided it would be the perfect picture for this week's photo challenge at   RAZMATAZ .  The challenge was to photograph something aged, with character, a history.  This little slot has the patina that many designers try to achieve when trying to age an item.  I could also picture the people of whichever era this bill slot served, diligently coming into town each week to pay their bills. Now many of us do it with the click of a mouse!

 I visited this pretty little town which is located about half an hour from downtown Orlando with my friend CG.  She is always up for adventures especially if it involves thrift or antique stores and a stop for a good lunch.  She hit the nail on the head by driving me to Winter Garden because there is a little bit of everything there. 

I had plenty of contenders for my challenge photo including this one:

I bet you can guess what I found this on.  I had no idea Ford made F-750s!  Look at what I found on the other side.

Now I know you know what this is.  It was parked in front of the renovated Winter Garden Railroad Station.  The tracks have been turned into a wonderful bike path that takes you through several small communities and countryside all the way to Sanford, Florida. A really good day trip for bike riders. 

Behind the firetruck, under the overhang we found this aged contraption.  It was used to apply pesticide to crops.

This is what the town of Winter Garden has done with the area where the passenger train tracks used to run through town up to this station. There is now a wide promenade that both bikers and walkers can use through the center of downtown.

A couple of blocks over we found another railroad station, this one services active train tracks for unloading cargo.

This quaint little town offers up plenty of thrift and antique shops as well as unique gift shops and a feed store that is right next to this railway depot pictured above.

And the town has more than it's fair share of chippy old buildings.

I've been to Winter Garden several times for browsing and lunch and this day CG introduced me to a new place that was as charming to look at as it's BBQ was delicious. 

Named after the two sister/owner's grandfathers, Harry and Larry's was serving up delicious traditional Southern Bar-B-Que and something else on their menu I had never had before.  "Q-Stew".  It was offered as a side dish and included tomatoes, corn, beans, okra, different meats and a really tasty broth.

Sitting inside this little shot-gun style space is a pleasure not just because of the delicious food, but there are things to look at all over the walls.

For those in the blogworld who love old signs, Harry and Larry's had quite a collection.

Although I'm not quite sure how or why overalls "wear like a pig's nose".  I'm guessing that's a good thing.  Anyone know?

The restrooms had wonderful vintage-style lighted signs:

And towards the back of the restaurant was this amazing old freezer/cold storage door.  I never knew they came in anything but metal.  I wanted to include the whole wall in my picture because they had replicated the look of the old freezer around the edges of the door.  Didn't want to disturb the people eating in that area.
Harry and Larry's is a definite two thumbs up for food and atmosphere - and friendly, fast service!

Next time you want to see the "real" Florida, take a side trip to Old Winter Garden, you will feel a sense of tranquility that is hard to achieve in these busy times. 

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Sadie's Tongue Tied

It's not every day you get asked to show your tongue!  I was cruising around blogland yesterday and got word of a contest in honor of National Dog Week.  Not just any, everyday type of contest, but a "Show Us Your Tongue" contest.  Now, if there is something that a certain Boston Terrier in this household is good at, it is showing her tongue.

I think she was born with it sticking out.


It's ALWAYS out

Even if it's just a hint of tongue

Or "Full Out Tongue"

It's what she's known for around these parts

Check out  my newest blog discovery, Twinkie Tiny Dog,  I found that blog on one of my favorite dogblogs, Mango and Dexter's Great Adventures.  Twinkie is a Teacup Chihuahua and Mango, is well, the opposite. 

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Chic and Shabby at Art Angels

When I got an invitation from my RL friend and blogging buddy, Suebee, to attend an open house at the shop where she and her business partner, Kathy, have a booth I was so excited.  This was their first "official" event and they went all out decorating their booth with a Halloween theme.

Here they are:

Kathy is on the left and the famous SueBee is on the right. Two very sophisticated ladies. Kathy designed and made their signature sign that is at the top of this post and hangs above their booth to welcome customers.  Just look at that gorgeous green cabinet behind them!  It is my favorite piece in their booth and I love the way the milk glass just pops against the color of the cabinet.  Take a closer look...

You can see a raven perches on one of the top cabinet doors and a witch sits atop the shelves.  I think I can zoom in closer so you can get a look at that beautiful milk glass...

The black candelabra on top adds drama to the Halloween theme and I love the way the two white pitchers are displayed on small black cake plates surrounded by candy corn.  Can you see the two small black pumpkins?  What a unique touch, especially the one on top of the cabinet.  It is displayed on one of the many pretty "mini" cake plates (like the black ones holding the white pitchers)  that Kathy herself has made.  Was your eye drawn to the two silver candle holders on the left that just drip with lovely cut glass?

The lower area of the cabinet holds even more treats.  Vintage syrup pitchers and lovely old milk bottles.  A delicate pair of women's gloves.  If you look very carefully you will see a seasonal greeting spelled out in the scrabble tiles next to the creepy spider.

Of course there was much more than just my favorite cabinet.  The checkered cloth lining of the pretty picnic basket just makes this eclectic stack of treasures all the more attractive and catches the attention of a browsing customer.

Another cabinet holds a scrabble greeting as well as an old aluminum tray, some perfectly aged silver pieces and an assortment of  glass objects to add some sparkle.

The outside of this cabinet was delightfully decorated with an old whisk broom that has been overtaken by an eight-legged tenant.

Suebee and Kathy have many more pictures of the excitement of the open house over at SueBee and Butterflies.  You will see what some of the other booths look like and be introduced to some of Kathy and SueBee's friends and family members.

Chic and Shabby by Kathy and SueBee is just one of many unique and special booths at Art Angels, located at 5515 S. Orange Avenue, Orlando, FL.  The location is well marked with this sign.

And you will be properly welcomed at the front door by this fella:

If you are in the area, stop by, there are surprises and delights in every nook and cranny.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Mr. DeMille, It's Time For My Close-Up

Linking to the very creative  RAZMATAZ    for my second Friday challenge.  Fun.  I may have to start using the term "faffing about". LOL. Thanks Chania for this fun and challenging exercicse!

The challenge was to photograph something very closely.  When objects are filmed this way, they take on new possibilities and characteristics we miss from afar.

So, what do you think it is?

Some sort of medical photography depicting the nervous system?

Or, is it a ball of string that has gone beserk?

Perhaps a bad hair day?

Those raised in the South may recognize it...

Now, I know you recognize it....

Spanish Moss.  Usually it hangs from trees, like this:

Thanks Chania, again, for bringing some creativity to my little blog.  Enjoying it.