Peace In The Mountains

Peace In The Mountains

About Debbiethisandthat

Sunday, September 25, 2016

LEGO Art At The Arboretum

LEGO as Art


Raise your hand if you liked to play with LEGOs as  kids. How many hands are in the air? Probably a lot. LEGOs are a favorite of kids around the world....and many adults. In fact, some adults turn LEGOs into art as you can see in the picture above. 


Mr.thisandthat and I visited the North Carolina Arboretum near Asheville a few weeks ago where LEGO art by artist Sean Kenney is on display. This is the second time the arboretum has displayed LEGO art and we were mighty impressed by what we saw! Can you imagine using over 52,000 LEGO pieces?!


Each creation was so imaginative and looked real! Doesn't this eagle just look like it could take flight at any moment?


It was interesting to read about each design and to see how many LEGO pieces were used to create the object.


Even a sundial was made out of LEGOs. See the little bird perched on the sundial? It's made out of LEGOs as well. 


Close-up of the little bird. 


This design used "only" 27,000+ pieces!!  Sean Kenney must be one patient person!


As luck would have it, my camera battery died soon after we got to the arboretum and so I had to resort to using my camera phone for the rest of the photos. (Note to self, charge the camera before going on a photo shoot!) I was impressed with how all of the creations were displayed in a "natural" setting, like this duck with her ducklings who were next to a stream. 


And doesn't this snake look real?! It was coiled under a tree stalking a LEGO "mouse" who didn't get in the picture. 


But, here's my favorite!  You just knew there would be a butterfly didn't you? Absolutely gorgeous and so intricate! 


Just had to get my picture taken next to this one!


The North Carolina Arboretum is such a beautiful place to come and visit. There are water displays, trails to walk on and the main visitor center as well as the Baker Center that typically houses some type of artistic display and gift shop. There is also a cafe where food can be purchased in the main visitor center. And, if you like Bonsai, there is also a Bonsai exhibit. Lots to see and do if you decide to come for a visit!


Mr.thisandthat and I hiked in this area long before the arboretum was here, but now that we have this lovely arboretum we enjoy being members. If you would like to know more about the arboretum you can check out their website here. Now, go enjoy your Sunday and have some fun playing! You might even want to get yourself some LEGOs!

Until Next Time,
Debbie

No compensation has been received from either LEGO corporation or The North Carolina Arboretum for this post. All writing and opinions are my own. 

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Styling for Late Summer, Early Fall

How To Dress For The "In Between" Seasons

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If you're like me, you may find it challenging to figure out how to dress when it's that "in between" the seasons time. It's not officially Fall, and yet it's pretty late in the Summer. It's still too warm to don heavy sweaters and yet you want to give a nod to the fact that it's September. What's a wannabe fashionista to do?

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Luckily, as I was shopping my closet today, I remembered I had this short sleeved sweater in a lovely Fall orange color. I love the sleeve length on this sweater. It's long enough to give some warmth without being too warm. The only negative with this sweater is its length. Kind of wish it was a little longer over the hips and derriere. I believe I bought it at Stein Mart, but it's been awhile so I can't be sure.

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What I am sure about is how much I love the pairing of this sweater with the mustard color scarf. Love this combination of color....it just says Fall! Found this scarf at Walgreen's. Two for $5 ladies...you need to check out their selection of scarves!! 


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This is a good example of how to wear a color if it isn't a "typical" color choice for your skin tones. I don't typically choose to wear yellows around my face as this color can make my fair skin look "washed out."  However, wearing a black sleeveless top as a base and adding the gorgeous pop of orange with the sweater balances out the mustard yellow of the scarf next to my face. It's a winning combination in my opinion!

How about you? How do you dress for the in between seasons? Do you have a favorite color combination you love to wear? Hope you'll take a moment to share. 

Until Next Time,
Debbie

*This is not a sponsored post. No compensation has been received from any stores or brand names mentioned. All writing and opinions are my own.

Links:

Katherine's Corner

Elegantly Dressed and Stylish

Today I am linking up with Tania onWednesday’s Wardrobe.

Over the Moon Link Party

Monday, September 12, 2016

Fall Arrives on the Foyer Table

Fall Arrives on the Foyer Table


It's been months since I've mentioned the foyer table. Have you been wondering what's been going on with it? To be honest....not much!  Summer was really busy with house chores and traveling. So, the foyer table has pretty much remained the way you last saw it here. I just haven't taken the time to update the look. 


But, with the arrival of September, I felt that the bright summer colors didn't quite fit the early Autumn feel. 


I'm not really ready to pull out all things pumpkin quite yet. So, I went with a modified Fall look. This door hanger says, "Welcome Fall," and the edging matches the wreath I created last Fall. You can check out the diy burlap wreath post here




The orange table cover along with the burlap wreath and wall hanger and the colors of the cat and decorative pear all speak to Fall....while the cat also adds a note of whimsy to the look. 


I added a Longaberger basket to the bottom shelf to carry through with the colors of Fall. Found this basket awhile ago at a local antique barn and love the fact it came with the plastic liner and pretty cloth liner, as well. I'm a big fan of Longaberger. 


As I've said before, the foyer table tends to set the theme for the seasons at my house, so I'm happy to be updated for early Fall. I'll continue to "tweak" the look as we move into October and November. Pumpkins will arrive....no worries there!  This foyer table theme is also a good example of using things I already had on hand..with the exception of the "Welcome Fall" hanger which I picked up recently at the Dollar Store. When creating table venues, start with what you already have and go from there. 

And now...for an added bonus.....


Just want to share a pic of these beautiful flowers that Mr.thisandthat surprised me with this past weekend. He's such a sweetie!! Aren't they beautiful? You can never go wrong with flowers gracing the table....

Until Next Time,
Debbie

Linking With:
Southern Hospitality

Friday, September 9, 2016

A BIG Announcement

I Can't Believe I'm Saying This....


Happy Friday, dear readers!  Remember a couple posts ago when I was talking about going through a major transition, but didn't tell you what it was?  Well, today I'm going to do the big reveal. And, for me, this is a BIG announcement...

I'm Retiring!

Yep, it's true. I can hardly believe I'm saying it.  But, the more I keep saying it, the more believable it is becoming. I signed the "official" paperwork earlier this week and I plan to finish out this semester at school. When we leave for the December holiday break, I won't be returning to school in January. I'm excited, happy, emotional and, yes, a little bit sad....even though I am seeking this change and am very ready for it. But, it is still a BIG transition. And....I have to ask myself.....where did 30 years go?  In some ways it seems like forever since I stood in front of the roomful of children you see in the class picture above. (Who is that young woman standing in the far left corner? Wow...a much younger Debbie, that's who!!) But, in other ways, it seems like I just blinked and those 30 years went by. The year was 1987 and Madonna was at the height of her fame as was Janet Jackson. "Three Men and A Baby" was a huge hit at the box office and we first heard the phrase, "Nobody puts Baby in a corner," spoken as only Patrick Swayze could say it. The school I was hired to teach in had just installed a "new wave" computer lab of Apple IIe computers that only the computer lab attendant could touch if the children had a question about using them. The teachers were only supposed to supervise the kids while they used the computers! To put how far we've come with technology into perspective for any younger readers....the Apple IIe computers used floppy disks. Remember those?! I have to chuckle at this memory as I compare it to today's teaching world in which all teachers are supposed to be "tech savvy" and most schools put computers into children's hands as soon as they arrive in kindergarten. Hey, I see babies using computers in restaurants now days. But, back in 1987...it was a different world. 

I arrived as a teacher in the public schools actually six years after I graduated from college. I have mentioned in earlier posts, that my first degree was in music education K-12. But teaching jobs in the field of music were few and far between in the early 80's, so for six years after graduation I taught private music lessons, did a short stint in the Records and Admissions Office of my college and taught four year old pre-school. During this time, I had also married and moved to North Carolina and decided I wanted to go back to school to get my elementary certification. So, back to college I went, this time as an "older" student. It was a challenging couple of years in which I wondered if I was doing the right thing or not. After all, I had already gotten one teaching degree in which I was unemployed. What if it happened again? And, to top it off, my husband had also decided to change careers and go back to school to be a teacher. Yikes.....I knew I had to get a job and soon! But, things worked out as God had planned..... and I did get a job. 

But, it wasn't an easy first year. Oh no!!!  I still call that first year of teaching my "trial by fire" year in which I was hired to teach a "combination" class. That means a class that contains two grade levels; in my case third and fourth grades. So, here I was a brand new teacher and I was supposed to teach subject matter from two different grade levels. AND....the class was formed two weeks after school had already started due to overcrowding in the regular classrooms. So these students were removed from their original classrooms and put into a classroom with me. Yes....you can imagine how the kids felt....and their parents.....and I was a nervous new teacher.

Sigh...

But, by golly, we all made it through. And here I am thirty years later....announcing my retirement. There have been many classrooms of students these thirty years. Lots of fun and laughter and learning....lots of good memories. 


We used to dress up at Halloween....we don't do that anymore. 


And here I am taking "Flat Stanley" on a trip to the Biltmore House. Have you heard of Flat Stanley? He is a character in a children's book who gets flattened when a bulletin board falls on him. He gets to go on lots of adventures because he is flat. Lots of teachers, like me, would either take Flat Stanley places and photograph him or send him through the mail to different places where people would photograph him having "adventures" and then mail the pictures back to our classroom. The kids LOVED it! They couldn't wait to see where Flat Stanley had been.


And there were more transitions over the years. Like transferring to new schools to teach. And then, going back to school for a Master's Degree. And working on National Board Certification. And then going back to college, one more time, to earn my Gifted Education Certification. For thirty years I have either been in school or going to school.....at the same time!


And here I am today....a little older.....with a few more wrinkles and gray hairs.....feeling so grateful for the chance to have been a teacher.  But....I'm ready for new adventures. I'm ready for a different schedule. I'm ready to be able to enjoy my home and family more. I'm ready for more time to pursue interests and hobbies and blogging and writing. 


I'm retiring.....

But, I'll never stop being a teacher!

Public Domain Image

Until Next Time,
Debbie


Linking With:
Picture


Over the Moon Link Party

Monday, September 5, 2016

Monochromatic Styling Brown Skirt and Top


(All photos property of debbiethisandthat.com)

Labor Day Monochromatic Styling



Happy Monday...it's Labor Day.... and that means I'm beginning to think of Fall as I style a monochromatic look in brown. 



I've actually had this brown skirt for several years, but rarely wore it as I didn't like the top that came with it. So the skirt lived in my closet sad and lonely. Guess it was just waiting for this draped neckline top that I picked up a few months ago on a Goodwill hunt. I was hoping you could see the pretty sparkles around the neckline, but they are not showing up well in the photo. Trust me...they're pretty!!



I wore this ensemble to church on Sunday and received several compliments. When I told one lady about finding the top several years after purchasing the skirt, she remarked that the top looked like it was "made" to go with the skirt. I agree! Funny how that works out sometimes with clothing, isn't it? You find the right mixes and the outfit just pops!



With all of the brown, I felt like I needed to add some color to the palette, so I did that with some pretty jewelry. I chose pieces that combined brown tones with gold and burnt orange. The tiger eye ring belonged to my mother. 



And the addition of my straw purse added a pop of color, as well.



And how cool are these Westies loafer style heels in brown? I fell in love with these when I found them "almost brand new" and tried them on and felt how comfortable they are. The block style heel is a little high, but gives good support for walking. (Yes....another Goodwill purchase....can you say $4 for almost new shoes anyone?)
Note to self: take the sticker off the bottom of the shoe before taking pics for the blog. I wore these in the choir loft Sunday and probably showed the whole congregation the price tag. Oh Deborah!!

Anyway.......



I like how this monochromatic look came together.  My skirt isn't lonely anymore and I will definitely be wearing this outfit in the future. Do you like to wear monochromatic looks? Are you starting to bring out the Fall colors now that we are in September? Discovered any great finds at Goodwill lately? Hope you will take a moment to share...I enjoy hearing from you! (And I hope you enjoyed a great Labor Day!)

Until Next Time,
Debbie

Linking With:
#iwillwearwhatilike | Not Dressed As Lamb
http://www.notdressedaslamb.com/2016/09/a-polka-dots-special-iwillwearwhatilike-link-up.html

Monochromatic Styling Brown Skirt and Top


(All photos property of debbiethisandthat.com)

Labor Day Monochromatic Styling



Happy Monday...it's Labor Day.... and that means I'm beginning to think of Fall as I style a monochromatic look in brown. 



I've actually had this brown skirt for several years, but rarely wore it as I didn't like the top that came with it. So the skirt lived in my closet sad and lonely. Guess it was just waiting for this draped neckline top that I picked up a few months ago on a Goodwill hunt. I was hoping you could see the pretty sparkles around the neckline, but they are not showing up well in the photo. Trust me...they're pretty!!



I wore this ensemble to church on Sunday and received several compliments. When I told one lady about finding the top several years after purchasing the skirt, she remarked that the top looked like it was "made" to go with the skirt. I agree! Funny how that works out sometimes with clothing, isn't it? You find the right mixes and the outfit just pops!



With all of the brown, I felt like I needed to add some color to the palette, so I did that with some pretty jewelry. I chose pieces that combined brown tones with gold and burnt orange. The tiger eye ring belonged to my mother. 



And the addition of my straw purse added a pop of color, as well.



And how cool are these Westies loafer style heels in brown? I fell in love with these when I found them "almost brand new" and tried them on and felt how comfortable they are. The block style heel is a little high, but gives good support for walking. (Yes....another Goodwill purchase....can you say $4 for almost new shoes anyone?)
Note to self: take the sticker off the bottom of the shoe before taking pics for the blog. I wore these in the choir loft Sunday and probably showed the whole congregation the price tag. Oh Deborah!!

Anyway.......



I like how this monochromatic look came together.  My skirt isn't lonely anymore and I will definitely be wearing this outfit in the future. Do you like to wear monochromatic looks? Are you starting to bring out the Fall colors now that we are in September? Discovered any great finds at Goodwill lately? Hope you will take a moment to share...I enjoy hearing from you! (And I hope you enjoyed a great Labor Day!)

Until Next Time,
Debbie

Linking With:
Sydney Fashion Hunter Ageless Style Link-Up
#iwillwearwhatilike | Not Dressed As Lamb
http://www.notdressedaslamb.com/2016/09/a-polka-dots-special-iwillwearwhatilike-link-up.html
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