Monday, August 5, 2013

Bretz Family Reunion 2013


Hello...
Remember Me?? 

I know it's been a while since my last post!
Uncle Jack reminded me that May 18th was the last time
I had blogged and he's right!!
So Uncle Jack... this is for you!

Uncle Jack Bretz with Jack Bretz Jr.
We returned from Michigan this week.
Initially we went for a family reunion 
but we ended up staying for 2 weeks!!

Kurt was raised in Michigan and left for California 
when he was 11 years old.  So naturally, he was excited to 
share a little bit of his youth with his own children.  



I have lots of pictures to share from our Michigan adventures
but this post is primarily about the 
Dulzo/Bretz Family Reunion.

Uncle Jack and Frank (Papa) Bretz
The last reunion took place 8 years ago.  
Jack and Cassie were 4 & 6 years old
and don't remember a whole lot 
about their earlier trip to Michigan.

Lynne, Kim and Suzanne organized the events
and did a fabulous job creating a perfect picnic at the park,
 including the weather!!

We had a great time seeing Kurt's family 
and introducing the kids to their Michigan cousins. 

3 Generations of Bretz Boys


Amanda and Kaitlyn

Jack, Kurt, Dave and Scott
Besides reminiscing old stories and visiting with loved ones, 
there was lots to do and see.

Riding bikes along the lake.

Fishing and Skateboarding
Buddy Walking
Water Play



Bubble Blowing
Eating

And of course posing for family photos!!

4 of the 8 brothers and sisters- Jerry, Jack, Frank and Marlene
L to R: Claire Bretz, Joan Bretz, Jack Bretz, Frank Bretz, Fay Bretz,
Pat  Bretz, Jerry Bretz & Marlene Trombley
The Cardeccia's
The Sukienniks
The Plohetski's
The Bretz's
Fay and Frank (aka: Dapa and Papa) with Jack and Cassie

Cousins

Aunt Claire and her beautiful family

My favorite part of the whole day was watching my kids 
bonding with their cousins.  

It was the perfect Bretz Moment!!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Paint It!!

I found this art piece at the Goodwill...
I have to admit, I was embarrassed 
to be seen buying this painting.
Luckily I didn't run into anyone I knew while toting 
this 3 foot by 5 foot canvas!!

But I knew that the $8 price tag was worth it!!
A canvas of this size at Michaels starts at $80-100...
even with a 40% coupon I would be spending over $50!!
So I decided to keep my eye out for a decent canvas 
on my weekly thrift store visits.

The key is to look for a canvas that isn't creased,
or raised and that doesn't have thick paint texture.
I brought this baby home and set it up for the family to wonder...
Has she gone mad?? Really??
I had a great time watching their reactions to my new purchase!

But after a few coats of primer I was ready to begin!!
A clean slate... so to speak


I marked 2 inch ticks across the top and bottom of the canvas.
Next, I lightly penciled lines across the board. 
I didn't want a uniform look...
so I just started painting lines!
I used opaque acrylic paint but also watered down 
some of the colors to make them more transparent. 

 I knew that I wanted to add lots of color to my painting,
so I began with colors I had and then started mixing them
to make new colors.
 
 
I kept adding new colors and changing directions.
 I allowed some paint to run down the canvas,
I liked the look of the streaks.

I also made sure to place contrasting colors next to each other,
and only repeated a few colors.
 A few hours later...
This is what it looked like!!



By the way... everything seen here is also thrifted!!
Buffet ($100) 
Cake plate ($4)
Cloche's ($4-10)
Deer (25 cents)


Because I'm always changing things up...
my art now resides in this reading corner.
You can read more about it here.

 I also added a few new colors...

 Come to think of it...
She needs a good name!!
If you think of one, comment with some ideas
and help me find a name for this colorful piece!!

Lamp Shade Update

Remember the piano corner??
Well... The piano is now gone!
The kids stopped taking lessons and hadn't touched
 it in months, so it had to go to a new home 
where it would be loved and appreciated!! 
Thanks Jeromes!!

This is our new reading corner...

For weeks I have been staring 
at the blank canvas on the lamp shade.  
It's been screaming...
"Do something to me!!"
So I found a sharpie and got busy writing down 
all of my favorite inspirational quotes. 
 I'm pretty please with the results...
It's a great conversation piece and the 
kids actually sit and read the lamp shade!!



Everything in this corner has been thrifted...
(except for the chair and shag throw)

The painting originally had an awful design on it!
I was embarrassed to buy it but I knew the size was perfect...
I'll be posting a "how to" for the painting soon!

canvas ($8)
 lamp ($6)
lampshade ($5)
pillow ($5)
wicker table ($4)
candlestick ($4)
wooden sunburst ($15)

I purchased all of these items from thrift stores.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Teddy's College Room Make-over



Ok...it's really just an excuse to go visit Teddy!!
But we did manage to get his room organized in the process.

On February 22nd, Mama, Papa, Sony and I
 all made the 8 hour drive to Reno, NV.
I have to admit I was dreading the thought 
of being in a car for that long...
but it was quite enjoyable!
We were able to catch up, nap, play games on our phones 
and enjoy the beautiful scenery!







We checked into our hotel room and met Teddy for dinner!
Teddy is now 22 years old and such an amazing man!! 
We are all so proud of him!



Teddy lives just walking distance from the Circus Circus hotel
and half a mile from University of Nevada at Reno (UNR).

He lives in this house with 4 other room mates.


Teddy asked for our help to get his room organized...
Who better to clean, organize, and decorate??
Here are some before pictures of his bedroom.


He had his flat screen tv covering up an alcove...


...and his desk area was small and cluttered.


Teddy has lots of clothes & about 40 pair of shoes!!



 
We took an inventory of the things he needed 
and made a trip to Wal-Mart to get a few necessities...

After loading up with some baskets, shelving units,
hangers and a few other things,
 we called it a night and went back to our hotel...
Sony and I did some gambling and had a few drinks!
I lost $40...
but Sony was on fire!!
She hit several three of a kinds 
and a flush to make up for my loses.



I love hanging out with my Tissy!! 
She's the best...


In the morning before heading over to Teddy's 
for a bedroom make over we went to breakfast at 
Peg's Glorified Ham N Eggs.
Such amazing food! 
If you are ever in the area... check it out!!
It was delicious and gave us the energy we needed
to tackle his project.

Ok... I'm drooling over this banana waffle!!

Our first task was to make better use of the alcove...
We had Teddy move the TV to the desk area.

(While we were busy in his bedroom, Papa was downstairs tidying up the house...
fixing the garbage disposal, sweeping, vacuuming, and scrubbing!!)



Then, we organized the closet and placed all his shoes on shelves.  
Have you ever seen a college kid with this many shoes?
There are more shoes on the floor of his closet.


Next, we rearranged the other pieces of furniture in his room.
We brought a shelf unit in from the foyer and used it 
to for additional clothing storage.


Did I mention... the boy has lots of clothes!!
Mama rearranged and organized a desk area for Teddy.



We added a few decorations using things he already had...



It took us a full day to clean, purge, rearrange & organize,
 for all the changes we made. We even washed all
his dirty clothes at the laundromat and took him 
grocery shopping to stockpile his room with snacks!

Teddy and Madison were so happy with the results!!
...and so were we!!


In the evening, we went back to the hotel for 
showers and a rest and then Mama & Papa 
treated us for an amazing dinner at the Steakhouse.



On Sunday morning, Madison's family had us all over 
for a lovely breakfast! 
(This was the only picture I took while there!)


In the afternoon, Madison and Teddy took us for a walking
tour of the UNR Campus...
It was fun to get a glimpse of Teddy's daily life
while away at college! 
The campus is beautiful and very charming.











Isn't my nephew gorgeous?? 
I love him and can't wait to see him again soon!

Monday morning came quickly and we made the drive
home safe and sound! I have to admit we were all very 
tired but it was a good tired!
It's nice to know our boy is well cared for
and living in a clean organized space...
at least for one weekend.