Friday, December 31, 2010

A New Victorian

With a new year comes renewed focus, renewed goals, and new... blog layouts.
Victoria Nouveau is like my Idea book opened up, filled with vintage inspiration, creative endeavors (with DIY how to), & Random Recommendations.

Mondays are for Music and Movies
Wednesdays are for Wondrous Finds & Creations
and Saturdays are for Simple How Tos, Recipes, and Thoughts
Keep an eye out for my Random Recommendations, too!



Follow me for marvelous give aways and challenges.
(First Giveaway when we get to 30 followers)

Check back Monday for a forgotten music Icon.

A new Victorian --
         Victoria Nouveau

Thursday, December 16, 2010

See you in 2011!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

10

10 school days until Christmas break.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Its beginning to Look a lot like Christmas

Christmas time is here
Happiness and Cheer
Fun for all that children call
Their favorite time of the year


Snowflakes in the air
Carols everywhere
Olden times and ancient rhymes
Of love and dreams to share


After rushing around for the Black Friday sales, I love spending my
day after Thanksgiving decorating for Christmas and getting in the Holiday Spirit.

This year, I went for a more Victorian, girly tree.
And we're all ready for Santa to shimmy down the chimney. 

And some of our left over decorations made their way to the other mantle in the bedroom.
 
With Thanksgiving in our recent thoughts and Christmas in our future, I think we need to develop
attitudes of gratitude.

Every time you look at your Christmas decor, try to recall the many blessings you've been granted and the things that warm your heart.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Walking in Virginia

I took the walk!


Kyle and I went to Falls Church, Virginia this past Sunday to take the walk with Hanson (um, yes, they are still alive, are not 12, and still have fans-- a lot of them).

The initial launch of the Take The Walk campaign began with one mile barefoot walks staged across the US and Canada to help inspire individuals to make an impact through simple actions. Thousands of individuals participated in these walks, lead by the band HANSON in partnership with TOMS Shoes, providing thousands of shoes to impoverished children in South Africa.

Take The Walk is about giving us simple tangible ways to take action against the HIV/AIDS pandemic and poverty in Africa--A small donation, the purchase of a pair of shoes, the download of a song or simply taking a barefoot,  one-mile walk.  We took the walk for clean water...




This was our first walk, but it was fun, the fellas are actually decent people, and it was followed by the seriously most amazing concert I've ever seen (and that is saying a lot).

Check out more about taking or hosting a walk.








Saturday, November 13, 2010

American Education Week

November 14- November 19th is American Education Week.  Schools nationwide are going to be flooded with parents and visitors.  Obviously, I am a big proponent of education any way it can be delivered, but I wonder, why do we emphasize it only this one week out of the whole year? 
Shouldn't education be a higher priority than a 5 day dedication? 



For all the advancements in the education world (yes, education is evolving...), the country sure doesn't emphasize the need for effective schools or teachers  (or eduction- in general), if all we can afford to do is celebrate our neighborhood school for one week a year.   

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Sew Chic and then some

Awhile back, we found an antique table, an old beat up chair, and a floating shelf at a local store. We proudly acquired these items through a fair trade (Bread for Antiques, literally), roughly painted the chair, add a hand-sewn pillow, and Voila! Guest room transformed into Shabby Chic Sewing Room!
I didn't realize I hadn't shared this before.

Having the sewing machine out and ready gets it more use! The easiest way to become more crafty is to have your craft items where you can see them, where you'll use them.

And, too early for jingle bells but past spooks and ghouls, Thanksgiving decorations have set up home on our mantle. 
Over 500 trick-or-treaters last weekend and I still long for pumpkins and gourds!

Friday, October 29, 2010

...and suddenly everything's fine...

I got my new shoes on and suddenly everything's fine...

I just made these, recycling the soles of some old shoes and some leftover fabric scraps. 
This is the first genuinely creative venture I've had in a couple months and its like chocolate--
one taste and I want more!! Bring on craft night!!!

(( As a note, Craft night is incomplete without my creative counterpart.... Dear Schmidts, move here, puh-lease!))

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Saturday, October 16, 2010

No Moon At All

Presenting some new old music...
Sharing a piece of my heart- Ms. Doris Day:



And another song that totally eclipses my heart:


And, finally, a great mid-October tune...


a-hey, hey.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

October!!!

This is Hallowe'en

Hallowe'en

Hallowe'en


This is Hallowe'en

Hallowe'en Town

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Grimey Soapbox

Most of us have convictions and ideals.  Sometimes the messages are pertinent and we feel that we simply must share them...

Now, I like radical thinking...
Radical thinking is what lead to slavery being abolished and women having the right to vote...

But, the messages of the "new radical" are growing more and more exasperating.  
I guess its no secret amongst my friends that I lean more left than right in a political discussion or on a ballot, but truthfully, I'm a dualist... I can appreciate some of the ideals of the conservative party, but I cannot handle this hate-filled rhetoric that is ambushing my news!

These messages bring to mind the stereotype of an ignorant, uneducated redneck, spewing nonsensical hate...
Obviously, the way to fight oppressive regimes is with... with... oppression, right? 

Hey! I guess it's suiting if  over-bearing, staunchy people want to walk around with tea-bags hitting their face, right? Right?

Sunday, September 12, 2010

May I Present to You... II

With autumn steadily approaching, the air is growing chill and calm.  May I present to you some equally chill and calm sounds.



Jenny Lewis and the Watson Twins has been one of my favorites for awhile. (If you like it, check out Rilo Kiley, her newer band.)




Basia Bulat is slightly reminiscient of sounds mom used to play while I was growing up.



1...2....3...4... Feist is always welcomed noise.

ENJOY!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Frederick

It should be a crime to not explore the places you live...
Not that I've fully explored, well, even my neighborhood, but as soon as I have a day off from "exploring" my classroom, possibly that will happen.

We have had a chance to go explore some of the nearby areas.  Frederick is a bit over a half hour drive and is rich with history... and weird murals!

The walls have eyes...
and wings...
and old men staring out fake windows.


Sunday, August 15, 2010

Hidden Faces

I've been really fascinated by all the faces in the corners and cornices of  the older buildings around here.
While in Frederick, I first noticed how many buildings in this area have decorative faces.

I realize fully that this is just decoration and nothing overly exciting, but I've really been loving finding all the different faces around.

Some are pleasant and peaceful...

and some are angry and ugly.

Any way, the walls ou here really do have eyes and ears...

Monday, August 9, 2010

Local Tourists

Today, we went to Washington, D.C. with our good friends and neighbors, Nick and Tricia. It’s a short trip from here, but traffic and parking can be horrendous, so the four of us hopped on the train.
This was the conductor on the way back-- perhaps the picture doesn't do him justice, but he was hilariously cartoonish. "All Aboard that's a-going aboard!" (Yeah, he REALLY said that. ha-ha)

We pulled into Union Station (gorgeous) and started acting like tourists.
Since we only live a little over 1/2 hour away, we decided just to visit a couple museums in the Smithsonian (which, as a by the way, is 100% free-- I didn't know!)

Firstly, we ate lunch in the American Indian Museum-- Why aren't there any Native American Restaurants? I forgot how much I love food from the Great Lakes Region Native Americans. It was superb and unique and clean and refreshing.

Then, we hit up the air and space museum, which we've been told is the best-- it was very fun!
Across the street is the Fine Art Museum, which I was lucky enough to see part of a couple beautiful exhibits.
My favorite was the Gothic era Italian collection
And we hit Hirshorn, the Modern and Contemporary museum, which was... um... hmm... interesting.
Some of the pieces were quirky and fun.
Finally, we briefly walked through the "castle", which houses Mr. Smithsonian's tomb. It is so funnily shaped; I doubted he was in there. I suggested we look, but no one else thought that was a good idea. It would've made for an interesting story.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Say Hello to My Little Friends

Don't underestimate your furry family members.  They're smarter than we give them credit for (usually... there are some loopies, of course).  I'm always surprised how much mom's dogs know what's going on.  Now, they don't always choose to obey, but dogs enjoy being good.
Star and Jack posing for their glamour shots.

Jack playing soccer with Kyle. 

The kids waiting their turn in line for kickball.

What a patient girl!


Monday, August 2, 2010

Back to Crafting

Since we've moved, I haven't had a lot of time or energy for crafting.  But, I finally had the opportunity to make a wreath for our apartment door. 
With all the huge craft stores around, I'm sure that soon I'll be a creating fool!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

International Spectacular

Last weekend, we went to the International Day in Columbia (about a 4 minute drive).
We were a little disappointed after reading about their International Fest in April (which looked amazing!) , but the entertainment was fun and the lemonade was the best I'd had in my life. 
There were Middle Eastern belly dancers...

Scottish folk dancers...

and African folk singers...

Sad we didn't  stay, the city gave everyone a gourmet cupcake from DC cupcakes to celebrate their birthday.  We are excited to be in an area  that has a new festival every week.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Pride

As I get older, I realize that I'm developing the same cultural pride I grew up with. Suddenly, the stenciled door and windowboxes sound like something I absolutely must have!   

Never was I ashamed to be a Swede, but now I am becoming more and more proud of it.

Perhaps my garage door will don a flag a la My Big Fat Greek Wedding? 


Friday, July 23, 2010

Home... so far.

One week into the move, it feels great that we are almost done making the house a home! 


Looking at the front room from the middle room (the parlor?  the pass-through room?  the china room?  deciding on a name for the space-- Ideas??)

Looking into the bedroom

Looking into the guest room

A basic Bathroom

The Kitchen

So, that's it for now-- 5 quick views of our new home. 

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Family

We know that family is integral in our eternal progression and happiness (or sometimes frustrations...)


There's the family we're given and blessed with...
sister, dad, me-- 3 amigos!

My mom and my step-dad (Daddy Gary) are 2 of my best friends and we're all close. I have no digital photos of them to share.

...The family we choose...
Soul-Sister, Erin, and I with our new look.


Kindred spirits, Terrell and Kyle


... And the family we choose to create...
my soul one.
 

I'd like to have them all in the forevers. Yes, that sounds like a plan.