My Glamorous Life

desk

I have so neglected my blog.  It’s not that I don’t want to update it.  Really.  I miss my crafty blogging friends terribly!  It’s just that I fired Mr. Diva’s secretary in early December and my life has not been the same.  I’ve gone from a woman who woke up every morning living life spontaneous (sewing, shopping, lunch with friends, etc.) to a working mother with no help.

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And during this time, our office landlord decided to repaint and re-carpet our offices (we have 3 separate rooms).  Oh and we added 2 new phone lines (to our 4 existing lines), 2 plasma televisions, and an additional internet connection.  Also we rented a 3rd office.  We upgraded our photocopier to one that also scans so we can email documents when necessary.  The list goes on.

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Although I’ve hired a new secretary, there is way too much work for one person to do…actually, it’s enough work to keep 3 full-time support staff members constantly busy.  And it doesn’t help that neither one of us were given any training on what needs to be done, where things are kept, etc.  So we’re just winging it!

Oh and did I mention Mr. Diva is a CPA and it’s tax season?  I think you get the picture.

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The holidays were a blur.  Seriously.  Everything was last minute and very stressful.  However, I did manage to get a few articles up on Boutique Cafe:

Holiday Tips with The Diva:  Gift Wrapping

Holiday Tips with The Diva:  Bow Tutorial

Holiday Tips with The Diva:  Tulle Garland Tutorial

Holiday Tips with The Diva:  Scents of the Season

Boutique Cafe Holiday Homes Tour (my home tour starts at 2:58)

xmasmess

Speaking of the holidays, I still have my nekkid (aka beyond naked) Christmas tree sitting in the middle of my living room…not to mention, I have yet to wrap up all the Christmas decorations and put them away in the attic.  I did get half of them away yesterday…woo hoo!

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And to top it off, Mr. Diva™ went to Las Vegas for 5 days while I was left to fend for myself and kids in 17 inches of snow.

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I shoveled three times.  And what was the first thing Mr. Diva said upon his return?  ‘”Why didn’t anyone take the snow off my car?”  ARE YOU KIDDING ME?  Men!

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On a creative note, Socialite Sister™ asked me to redecorate my sweet niece’s bedroom.  We searched endlessly for the perfect theme for little Miss Josie’s room until we came upon Timeless Treasure’s Mod Paris aka Bon Voyage.

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I purchased 8 yards of the pink heart fabric to make a Queen bed skirt.

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and the coordinating prints to make pillows and such.

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The main print also comes with a brown color way.  Only bought a yard of it as she’s purchased a brown duvet cover and we don’t want the room to be too dark.

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I bought the most awesome machine appliqué designs from Claire Atwood of Stitch On Time.  Yes, I have digitizing embroidery software, but at Claire’s prices, it isn’t worth it for me to do it myself.

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She even made me an appliqué of the camera graphic (6” x 10”) which I plan to cut out the centers, add photographs and frame several of them on the wall.

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Josie’s bedroom walls were already a soft pink, so I picked Pink Popsicle for her ceiling to make the room POP.

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And since I was being a bit adventurous, I had my BIL paint the back of her white bookcase a vibrant Rumba Orange.

dressform

Now I need to find a wire dress form like this one.  I’d bought a similar one for Marielle’s room at HomeGoods for a mere $49.  There’s no way I’m paying $185 for one.  Guess I’d better start hunting for one in HomeGoods.

pinkvespa

Found this 13” vintage pink vespa on Ebay.  The seller still has a few more of them if you want one.

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Scored a bunch of vintage tatting of eBay, too while I was at it.  One can never have too much trims, KWIM?

I finally got in some sewing yesterday morning.  Well, actually I started sewing at 3am, because I needed some baby boy gifts for a Bridal Shower I was attending at noon.  I’d show you photos, but I forgot to take any.  I made some minky blankets and burp cloths using one of Joel Dewberry’s print.  They were a hit!  Yeah ME!

Oh and next time I even think of using that Minky crap, smack me upside the head.  I have it everywhere.  I think I might even have inhaled some as I can feel it in my throat…ugh!

lisasiggie2

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The Never-Ending Painting Adventure

I’ve been quite busy with having my home repainted.  It’s amazing how much stuff we’ve accumulated since we last painted 5 years ago.

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The first thing to be painted were closets throughout the entire house.  Now granted, the closets didn’t need to be painted as the paint was still in great shape.  However, it gave me an opportunity to reorganize them all (and of course, I got to use my handy dandy label maker).  Although our house looked like a hurricane swept through, it was so worth it!

I can easily find items in my pantry and my linen closet never looked better.  I donated all my unwanted towels, sheets and placemats to a local animal shelter.  Now I have room to add new linens to match the new paint colors.

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Marielle’s room is FINALLY finished (well, except for a few little odds and ends)!  I only have a few sneak peeks of her room as we are still trying to find space to store all her junk.

Not only did we paint the walls hot pink and most of the trim black, we even painted her vanilla-colored furniture white. Marielle suggested we do black velvet curtains.  But in the meantime, I ordered 2″ black aluminum blinds for her huge window (because we all know how long it will take me to sew her curtains…LOL).

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I’ve been buying and hoarding anything zebra, hot pink and/or black for the last year.  My efforts have finally paid off.  Most of my best finds were at either HomeGoods, TJ Maxx or Marshall’s.  The hot pink lunch boxes were only $3.99 each.  And the zebra canisters were only a few bucks.  Oh and the hat box (which also has 4 coordinating big boxes) was only $5.99!  Score!

Check out this matching doll I bought while hunting for zebra items on Ebay!

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Marielle asked that I stop buying anything with a zebra print on it as she thinks it’s starting to look like a zebra puked in her room…haha!

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Since my darling daughter has a habit of writing on her closet walls (Marielle loves Anthony, Steven, Adam, Nick), we painted black chalkboard paint so we can just erase past boyfriends’ names instead of having to cross them out.  How clever am I?

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Oh, speaking of closets, I caved in and got her 300 hot pink Huggable Hangers.  I absolutely LOVE these hangers (might have to buy them for every closet in the house).  The above hangers may not look hot pink, but they certainly are.  It’s pretty hard to get the correct color when editing photos of a black closet.

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I purchased zebra light switch and outlet covers on Etsy.  Only problem is I ordered the wrong type outlet covers (I need the new rocker type covers).  So I’ll be doing a craft project this week–covering her old white outlet covers with some zebra wrapping paper and a little decoupage.  Wish me luck!

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I found this cool zebra phone at Marshall’s for just $12.99.  Perfect!

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This weekend I spent spray painting different things for her room in gloss black and semi-gloss white.  I had found this neat shelf (once gold) at TJ Maxx for a mere $12.99 last year.  The minute I saw it, I knew if turned upside down it would be a perfect bed crown for my daughter’s room.

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A little black paint and now to find the zebra sheer fabric to attach to the bed crown which I have stashed somewhere in my sewing room…I’ll show you photos of it once I get it hung on the wall over her bed.  I’ve got to figure out a good way to attach the zebra sheers to the bottom of the new bed crown.  Any ideas?

duckspaint

I hadn’t finished spray painting Marielle’s light pink wicker rolling baskets when those two darn ducks took over the yard.  Yes, they’ve been coming to my yard every stinkin’ day to eat all my Koi fish food.  Any good ideas on how to get these ducks out of my yard once and for all?  It’s getting a little old chasing them around with a broom, KWIM?

lisasiggie

Peaceful Easter Sunday

easterducks

Woke up Sunday morning to find the local ducks eating all my Koi fish food…and of course I spent the day chasing them out of my pond…LOL!

Easter dinner was filet mignon and rib-eye steaks on the BBQ.  Only my Dad for dinner.  Marielle wasn’t feeling well (doctors believe she is in kidney rejection–though I’m not so sure) and my MIL is in the hospital with a bad heart.  So we kept it simple this year.

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Did you know that Peeps have only 32 calories and 0 grams of fat?!  Peeps are a sure sign of Spring…especially the yellow bunny Peeps.

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Guess what Mr. Diva™ decided to do?  Have the entire interior of our 3,800 square foot house painted!  Usually we have a team of painters come in and get the house painted within a week.  This time we are using one guy to do the entire job.  It will probably take at least a month…ugh!  But hopefully it will be worth it.

 razzle

First up is Marielle’s lavender room.  We’re painting the walls hot pink and the trim black to match all her hot pink and zebra theme.

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Also, we are having her vintage-looking Vanilla bedroom set painted white so it pops!

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While the Sunshine Girl’s room is being painted, she’s taken over my Master Suite.  It looks like a bomb went off in my room!  She has already filled 4 garment racks just with her clothes!  And that doesn’t include all her dresser drawers.

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I decided to go a darker color (rusty brown) in the living room and will be painting the hallways chocolate brown throughout the house.

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The kitchen will go from a warm peachy color to a cinnamon rust shade.

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But my favorite so far is the 1st floor bathroom.  I’ve been dying to get rid of the lavender.

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I’ve chosen the prettiest tiffany blue paint for the walls.  In addition to tiffany blue bathroom accessories, I’ll add black and white, too. 

Guess I’d better get started on some matching curtains for all my new paint colors!

Hope you had a great Easter!

lisa

Hitting the Ground Running…

kidneyimpaired

(Kidney Toy available from Tracy Beans)

Marielle and I returned home late yesterday afternoon from Philadelphia–just two weeks after her successful kidney transplant!  Woo hoo!

It is great to be home, but the reality of what’s ahead is daunting:

  • Twice weekly doctor appointments for the next 6 weeks and weekly appointments thereafter
  • Daily in-home nursing appointments for Marielle
  • Filling a zillion prescriptions
  • Christmas decorations that need to be put away
  • A sewing studio that looks like a bomb went off in it
  • Designing a quick Fall/Winter 2010 boys’ clothing line for buyers
  • Complying with the new CPSIA requirements
  • Manufacturing and shipping my Spring/Summer 2009 boys’ clothing line
  • Preparing for house painters
  • Planning a 15th Liver Transplant Anniversary for Marielle on St. Patrick’s Day for more than 200 people in my home.

Overwhelmed is an understatement.  Seriously.  So please be patient with me while I dig out from under all this insanity…

oh and did I mention my home is TRASHED!  Thanks Mr. Diva…great job.  Not.

lisa

SEW Busy and Then Some

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Another successful Diva BBQ is behind us.  But oh my–the clean-up is overwhelming.

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It will literally take me WEEKS!

DIVA’S NYC CARAMEL APPLES

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Lots of people have asked about my delicious caramel apples at the BBQ…so I’ll spill:

First, hop on over to Instawares and get yourself some Midway’s Finest Caramel Apple Dip.  I purchased apple bubble trays (buy the bigger size) and candy apple sticks from Sugarcraft.

caramelapple

Next, tip your local produce guy a $20 bill at the supermarket and instruct him to hand select 100 big red delicious apples which MUST fit inside the provided apple bubble trays and stand straight (no lop-sided apples) or else…LOL.

Then go your friend’s Bagel Store (Diana has the BEST bagels in town).  Tell her you are swamped with BBQ preparations.  She’ll then ask you what she can do to help and it’s at that moment you hand over all the apples and supplies.

Next, have her employees wash and dry the apples.  Then put the sticks in.  Use their huge metal trays and line each tray with wax paper.

midway

Since we didn’t have a electric candy apple stove or an awesome gas apple cooker, Diana (not to be confused with Diana from Louisiana) used a huge stock pot (much bigger than I have at home) filled with water.  She then set the opened can of Midway’s Finest Caramel Apple Dip in the water to boil.  Something tells me we should have used the Quick Serve Apple Dip.  It took no less than 3 hours to melt each huge can of caramel..ugh!  Lesson learned.  There’s always next year.

appledip

Anyway, just dip the apple, swirl and set it on the wax paper.  When the caramel apples firm up, just put them in the bubble trays.  Let’s hope Diana is still my friend!  Seriously, a HUGE thank you to my buddy!

FABRIC SCORE

Yesterday I was able to order a particular of a fabric I’m dying to use in my upcoming boys’ clothing line.  I’d seen a preview of the fabric at TALA (LA Fabric Show), but didn’t think the first printing would be ready in time for my salesman’s samples.  I wasn’t going to show you, but I just can’t help myself:

AHexclamblackwhite

Not sure if I’ll incorporate this colorway, but I ordered it anyway:

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Last month the fabric manufacturer showed it to me in these colorways, too.  But they aren’t sure if they are going to get enough orders to go into production.  Keep your fingers crossed:

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AHexclamgreen

MACHINE EMBROIDERY

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Got lots done yesterday in the sewing room (Lady M™ and I are some team…LOL). Spend most of yesterday finishing up an order for 15 personalized tote bags for Kacey‘s new students.

G.O.A.T.S.

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In the world of garment manufacturing, G.O.A.T.S. (graphics on a t-shirt manufacturers) are at the bottom of the fashion feeding pool.  Lots of people say they are “fashion designers” when all they are really doing is slapping some graphics or wording on a pre-made t-shirt.

When I set out to design my first season of boys’ clothing, it was important to me not to take any shortcuts on t-shirts.  I hate cheap t-shirts prefer a medium-weight cotton interlock over jersey knit.  I feel interlock is more substantial and holds up nicely to repeated washings.  Another reason I decided to create my t-shirts from scratch is fit.  I wanted a comfortable fit and a rib knit neckline which laid around the neck nicely…not all wonky.

My patternmaker is in town, so we’re going to meet up in Manhattan tomorrow morning.  It will be nice to put a name to a face.

Ok…I had better get back to work!  Have a great day!

With friendship,

lisa2 

Sew….C is for

Continuing with the good old Encyclopedia of ME…based on the book, Encyclopedia of An Ordinary Life, by Amy Krouse Rosenthal.  Feel free to join in and post a link!

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Creating Chaos

Yep, that’s what I’m doing.  I do it all the time.  While others are sewing ruffles and sipping Strawberry Daiquiris by the poolside, I’m creating as much chaos as one diva can.  See, I’ve managed to put this all on my schedule:

  • Launch a clothing line
  • Undergo 6 hours family psychiatric evaluation to get my daughter on the kidney transplant list
  • Host a BBQ for more than 150 people
  • Embroider 17 tote bags
  • Paint two rooms
  • Wash 22 windows
  • Purchase wholesale cases of candy
  • Make a huge candy cart
  • Make 100 caramel apples
  • Move 4 industrial sewing machine and 20 feet of cutting tables out of garage into basement workshop
  • Clean out garage
  • Take down extra fence
  • Move swing set to new area in yard
  • Clean two barbeque grills
  • Purchase paper goods for party
  • Purchase booze and mixers for party
  • Power Wash my house and yard
  • Reseed lawn
  • Purchase and plant even more annual flowers
  • a zillion other things I am surely forgetting

Did I mention this all needs to be done by August 1st?  LOL.  Pray for me or come on over and help.

Company is Coming

I did get some great news yesterday.  Seems my friend, Heidi, will be bringing a few extra guests to the BBQ:

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Heidi purchased 4 of these last year when her local GAP Kids’ store went out of business and she’s giving me 3 of them!!!  OMG…these will be perfect for the ENK Children’s Club trade show!!!!

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And if that wasn’t enough, she’s also bringing me a few of these:

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Talk about a SCORE!  Now let’s just hope her husband doesn’t get pulled over for speeding en route to the BBQ, because I wouldn’t want to him to have to explain to the officer why he’s driving with a bunch of dummies…ROTFLMAO!

City Driving

Tomorrow I’m meeting 2 fellow fashion designers from my Fashion Incubator clan.  We’re attending the About Sources’ seminar on Fabric Sourcing.  Let’s hope it’s worth the $40 parking cost.  Thankfully I can take the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel instead of the Manhattan Bridge…yippee!

Hope everyone is enjoying their Sunday!

With friendship,

lisa2

My Sewing Mojo is Hiding in the Banished Place

Way back when I was an active participant in the Ebay custom boutique world, my friend, Jen of Olives Pearls, wrote a piece, The Banished Place, which stuck a cord.  Seriously, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve reread it.

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There is so much work to be done in my sewing room.  Like the chiminea cover which needs to be repaired.  When you can sew, you’re hesitant to purchase another vinyl cover for $50 when you know you could easily repair the old one or even make a new one.  But you don’t.  Instead, you join your neighbors in turning your upper middle income neighborhood into a trailer park.

I am distracted by many things these days.  Or perhaps I am just overwhelmed.  Mr. Diva™ has decided we are having the Big NYC BBQ on Saturday, August 2nd.  Oh crap!  Why does this man put such pressure on me?  I need to sew, not host a party for 200 people.

See, it’s simple for him.  He just pays for everything orders the food.  Me…well…I’ve got to get the house and yard in order.  Now this may seem doable…but it’s not that easy.  I’ll need to enlist the illegal day workers to clean the pond, scrub the BBQ grills, clean the huge coolers, and pick weeds, etc.  Then the Expensive Gardener™ will need to plant a zillion annual flowers so I can fund his trip to Italy this Fall.

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Oh and then there’s the garage…I’ve got 4 industrial cutting tables and 4 industrial sewing machines with tables, motors and attachments renting more than half the space in there.  So for the last year, we haven’t been able to use our garage.  I’ll have to hire the illegal day workers for a second day to have them carry all this sewing stuff down into the unfinished basement Banished Place.  I have yet to renovate it (even though Mr. Diva™ has given me the go ahead to have it done 2 years ago).  I just keep putting it off…guess I’ll never get to it.  However, I’ll need to first clean the basement in order to fit everything down there.  There is stuff everywhere!

Anyway, in order to host such a big party, it would be wise of me to get the invitations designed, printed and mailed.  Guess I had better get moving…

lisasiggie

Sew…It’s Sunday

Shopping

vintagevinyldressforms

Ooooh…look what I bought…Vintage Dress Form Vinyl Decals…but I’m getting mine in hot pink (like the ones pictured below).  Figured they’d be perfect in my sewing room on my black metal fabric cabinets, right?

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Here’s a smaller set of Vintage Dress Form Vinyl Decals from the same seller!

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And while I was shopping on Etsy, I bought this and this, too!

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Clothing Manufacturing

Remember last week when I was talking about dangerous drawstrings in children’s clothing?  Well, it seems the CPSC finally took some action:

CPSC Fines 8 Firms $230,000 for Drawstring Safety Issues

Perhaps other children’s clothing manufacturers will take the drawstring safety issue more seriously…KWIM?

Sewing Blogs

Mary aka Confessions of a Craft Addict is enjoying The Magic Sewing Box she won from me a while back.

tutorialcontest

Lots going on over at Sew Mama Sew.  They listed links to all the Sew Mama Sew Tutorial Winners.  In addition, they have a new Sewing Forum!

Patty of Mod Kid Boutique will be debuting her new fabric line with Michael Miller in October!  Way to go, Patty!

pinkpopcorn

Kittee posted a tutorial for making Pink Popcorn Balls.  YUMMY!

Kristy of Lower Your Presser Foot came up with a great idea for organizing her sewing patterns!

Well, hope everyone’s Sunday is a relaxing one!  I think I’ll try to sneak off to Target and do some more shopping without my needy children.  Did I mention they’ve been home for 4 days straight?  Need I say more?

lisasiggie2

Quirks, Obsessions and Random Things about Me

My Web Designer, Ingrid, tagged me with another 7 Things About Me…

Here’s the rules:

  • Link your tagger and list these rules on your blog.
  • Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
  • Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.
  • Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

Let’s get on with the show…LOL

hangers

1.  Hangers must all be facing right (or is it considered left?) as both my husband and I are left-handed.  When I get our clothes back from the laundry and dry cleaners, I take everything off their wire hangers and hang them PROPERLY on my hangers.

icemaker

2.  Instead of calling for service on the icemaker (our fridge is about 2 years old and still under warranty), for the last month or so, I just buy bags of ice and pour it into the ice compartment.  Not sure if I’m lazy, forgetful or just trying to annoy my husband.

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3.  I can eavesdrop on my family via the handy dandy intercom system.  Oh and something I recently learned about my intercom.  If you shut the volume off, it shuts off the front doorbell.

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4.  One can never have too many paper towels.  Actually any paper product.  Think toilet paper, paper plates, paper cups, napkins, etc.

pasta

5.  We really like pasta in my house.  Really.  This is just one shelf.  There is another.  And yes, they all must be in matching Tupperware Modular Mates with labels.  It’s Martha’s fault.

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6.  I must have symmetry in my displayed possessions.  I get crazy if someone doesn’t put something back exactly like I had it.

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7.  Toilet paper needs to go OVER the roll.  If I am visiting someone and I notice the paper is hung the wrong way, I fix it.  This goes for paper towels, too.

Okay, now to tag 7 other bloggers:

Jamie, Keely, Nobia, Claire, Kiva, Esther and LaraYOU’RE IT!

peeps

Off to make some Easter baskets for the kids!  Let’s hope I have enough tulle yardage to cover the baskets.  No longer do I bother with that cheesy cellophane wrap in colors which are too dark to show the contents.  Must remember to resist the PEEPS!  Oh, how I love PEEPS…especially the yellow bunnies.

Have a great day!

lisasiggie2

Sew…Help Me Out Here…

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I finally got around to posting My Sewing Room Organization Challenge on Squidoo.com.  I’d be your best friend if you stop by there and favor it so I can move up the ranks.  Thank you very much…LOL!

martha

Oh and something else…I just got tickets for Martha Stewart Live in NYC on Tuesday, March 11th…who’s coming with me?  Anyone?  Let me know!

Now back to the sewing room…

lisasiggie2

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