The Kofford Family relocates to Colorado after 40 years as Californians. In December of 2007, Grandma Lorraine is diagnosed with Stage 4 brain cancer. Sadly, she passed away on Dec. 26th, 2008 after a year long courageous battle. Follow our journey as we keep Lorraine's memory alive, and as we learn to appreciate that each day we are given, is a gift to be enjoyed!

“Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”
~Maria Robertson

Saturday, February 28, 2009

To paint, or not to paint...that is the question!

Remember my green and black bedroom that I told you about here?
Well, while waiting for the paint to dry on our tall walls downstairs, I went shopping. I was looking for the perfect old chair with charm and quality, and the right price tag! I found it at the local flea market! Here is my $15 wicker chair all ready to be transformed!

It's "real" wicker with wooden weaves, and is a charming green color. I bought a big can of black spray paint ready to get crafty, or as the Nester says, to "junk it all up!" But then my hubby suggested leaving it green as it already matched the room and had charm the way it was. I'm no decorator, but I do know one in person whose advice I will ask...(Yes, Sofia that I told you about! You will be hearing more about her next week!) To paint or not to paint? What would you do to the old green wicker chair? :-)

It will be going in this guest room.

Giveaway: Read below for the chance to win a new blog button...just leave a comment and you will be entered in the contest. Add our button to your site and be entered twice! :-)

Friday, February 27, 2009

Welcome to the new and improved, "Koffords in Colorado!"

Here it is; our new blog redesign full of apples, my favorite colors, and all things teaching; including "construction paper" and "staples" for effect! :-)

Thanks to the very talented Faith, of "Walk with me by Faith" blog, we got a new "makeover" that I love! Faith has graciously worked many hours developing a new design for us that matches our "Apple Tree" theme for the scholarship fund, and my love of apples and all things education! We hope you will find the site easy to navigate, and that you will be able to easily link to the scholarship blog as well as follow our family's story!

Faith has an adorable design store which you can see by clicking on her button below.

You'll enjoy reading her blog, and visiting her online store! She offers darling quality monogrammed items, personalized stationery, baby items, etc...She is just now entering blog design and is creating blog buttons, headers, and redesign for such a reasonable price!

I am so happy to have found Faith through, "Bless Our Nest" (Thanks Shannon!) Faith designed her adorable button, and I quickly e-mailed her!

I was so pleased with her ability to capture what I was looking for in a new blog makeover. Please check out her site and consider Faith for all your blog design needs, I can confidently say that she will make sure you are 100% satisfied! Her creativity is amazing! Thank you Faith, I couldn't be happier with our new blog makeover! :-)

Now for the best part that has to do with YOU! If you have a blog and would like to take it to a new level, how about your very own "button" that takes readers directly to your site? I am giving away 3 custom blog buttons that Faith will create just for you! Faith will take your ideas and blog name and will create a blog button just for you! Readers, (like me!) can then post your button on our sites which can bring additional readers your way! For those of you who have always wanted one of these but didn't know how,(like me!)this is a great opportunity!

How to enter? Just leave a comment here (and your e-mail address if it doesn't link to your name) and you are entered into the drawing! My children will draw the names on Sunday night at 8 p.m! You may enter daily and the winners will be announced on Monday morning! If you would like to increase your odds of winning, mention us on your blog and paste our family button in your post. We will add your name to the hat again!

For those readers who do not have a blog, more prizes are coming! My home decor giveaway will be coming next week, and there will be several fun things to give away! Life is short, let's have some fun!

Thanks for visiting and for being our "blogger friends!" You are so deeply appreciated! :-)

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Change is coming...

If all goes well, tomorrow morning there will be a big change for us over here at "Koffords in Colorado." Please check back and watch for a special giveaway...just for YOU! :-)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Painting in Progress...

The painters are here...ladders, brushes, and drop clothes have taken over the house. Boring builder beige has morphed into food colors! "Chocolate Brown" and "Whole Wheat" now occupy the walls and make me hungry! hee hee

The blog is getting a makeover and soon we'll have a "Grand Opening" of the new design. I'm planning my first giveaway for the occasion! Now I'm no decorator or chef, but I do think it's fun to play one! The giveaway will include lots of goodies for the decorator and chef in you! Stay tuned! :-)

Monday, February 23, 2009


How do you thank someone whose presence in your life is invaluable? How do you express in words what true gratefulness feels like? I have tried, and always fall short. My mom's dear friend Annette, is one of those people I am eternally grateful for. She cared for my mom when I could not...she did more than I can ever repay her for, and she did so without ever looking for anything in return...she stayed by my mother's side when I could not be there. She held my mom when she passed, and comforted me, when she herself was grieving. I love Annette. And no words can ever express how grateful I am to her. So, I had to show her with actions.

These special people helped me plan a surprise. They worked in the pouring rain digging trenches, hauling dirt, and working under tight time constraints. You see, Annette and her husband Fred live in California and had a trip planned to Napa Valley last week. I wanted to do something tangible to thank them for all they did for my mother this year. So, while they were away for a few days, their son Freddie and his wife Crystal graciously agreed to be my partners in crime to make this surprise of thankfulness become a reality!

So between e-mails, phone calls, and text messages, we begun, "Operation Island!"

Annette and Fred recently moved into their new home. There is a beautiful circular driveway and a big area ripe for some landscaping.

So, Freddie and I, along with a personal friend of his who happens to do landscape work in the area, came up with a master plan to surprise Annette and Fred with a living memorial island. Annette has lost both of her parents and two friends over the past few years. We wanted to create an area that was pleasing for her to look at, and could eventually grow into a quiet reflection area to remember those she has loved and lost.

Under the cover of a major rain storm, the crew hauled in dirt, boulders, plants and more while Annette and Fred were away.

The sun came out on the last day when the final touches were being added.

And when they arrived home, this lovely dry creek bed with plants and flowers to grow over the years awaited them. Thank you Annette and Fred for everything you have done for our family. No words or actions can ever repay you, but please know how grateful I am. I love you both!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Clothes, Closets and CAbi

Yesterday Rachel came over for two hours, and helped me sort through my closet full of outdated clothes. I wore the best thing I had, (the same outfit I wore to my mom's funeral if you were there) and she very graciously helped me see how the fit of clothes, the colors, cut, etc... can either be very flattering, or not.

Amazingly, as we were sorting, I realized I had clothes in my closet from 1988! How embarrassing, but true, and perhaps you too have some sweaters or other momento items you have saved? I discarded 8 bags of too small pants, outdated sweaters, old shoes, and Wal-Mart handbags! I think it is time to buy a decent 42 years old I deserve a purse built to last! :-) It felt good to purge, and next week we will hit the mall and see if we can find some well made classic pieces that will carry me through the spring.

I was fortunate to find Rachel through my husband's work, (I'll be featuring her in a future post!) but if you don't have a "Rachel" near by, try setting up an appointment through Macy's By Appointment. I have used this service once for our 20th class reunion and it was great. A stylist helps you find outfits that are flattering, in your price range, and gives a different viewpoint than your own. The service is free through Macy's, and a big help if you are needing a fresh beginning!

Today I am attending a "CAbi Party." I had never heard of such a thing; it is like a "Pampered Chef" party but with clothes! You try on various sizes and styles and then order from the collection. I'll see if I have any luck at this event...with so many clothes I got rid of yesterday, I need something to wear! hee hee

Here's a challenge for you today, just for fun, (and to make me feel better :-) find the oldest item you can in your closet and tell us what it is...can you beat 1988?

Have a great day friends!
Denise :-)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Blogger Friends

Good Morning Friends!

I'm sorry you haven't seen me around Blogger World much this week. I look forward to making the rounds and visiting all your blogs, as well as responding to comments very soon! This has been a busy week and I am still catching up!

Ashlyn is feeling better, but Kyle now has a temp. of 101.7 so he is home from school today. Poor sick boy will occupy this bed today!
We've been busy working on Girl Scout orders; filling, sorting, collecting, and distributing, (thank you so much for your support!)taking care of taxes, (our own plus my moms) and preparing applications for the scholarship fund. Did I mention that the Science Fair is coming in two weeks? How about the Spaghetti Dinner following the event, or volunteering? Ashlyn is in a big piano festival coming up in March and she's been trying to get several difficult pieces memorized, in addition to studying for the written portions of music theory and sightreading. It's a great challenge for her and she is almost ready! We're also planning her 8th birthday party in a few weeks, so life is indeed busy, but good! I am also working on a special surprise for some friends which I will tell you all about in the next day or so when the surprise can be revealed! :-)

Faith, from "Walk With Me By Faith" (her button links to her site on our sidebar) is working on a blog makeover for us, so be watching for a new blog design this week or next! Speaking of makeovers, remind to tell you about "Rachel" who will be coming to our home today to boost my fashion sense! Rachel used to work for a couture designer in France and is now getting started on her own business of helping everyday women like me jazz up our wardrobes on a budget. I can't wait to hear her tips about being stylish for less!

Lastly, we have had some very windy days here...60 miles per hour plus! A few days ago I found our mailbox blown open, (as well as all the neighbors) and a half dozen thank you notes I had written for the scholarship fund were floating in the pond! Newspapers, the neighbors mail, plus someone's Net Flix movies were all scattered on the street and in the pond. Since the snow had melted, it was muddy all around the pond and I sank down in the mud trying to retrieve the letters! I didn't want to slide into the pond so I tried pulling myself back up with my fingers and had mud everywhere! What a sight...muddy hands, feet, and dirty notes littered the car on my drive back to the house!
That same day I went grocery shopping and the wind blew my groceries out of the cart! Can you picture me trying to retrieve a loaf of bread flying down the parking lot? :-) It was literally "flying!"

Off for now to pick up another order of cookies from our Girl Scout leader...I will be in touch again, and I wish you all a good day, filled with happiness!

Until next time,
Denise :-)

Monday, February 16, 2009

My "Brownie" is a "Thin Mint!"

Yummy...Thin Mints and brownies combined do sound delicious! Today's variety was not to be eaten though! :-) Ashlyn was the smallest Girl Scout to sell cookies today outside of Safeway, so she earned the esteemed position of wearing the "Thin Mint" costume for the cause! To a 7 year old, this was better than if I had given her a hundred, "My Little Ponies!" Hee Hee She couldn't stop smiling from ear to ear, waving at all the cars, and taking the responsibility of representing Girl Scouts quite seriously!

Today was a sunny 60 degrees and a perfect day to sell cookies in Colorado!

Ashlyn's goal is to sell 300 boxes of cookies, and she is currently at 210 boxes thanks to your generosity! So, she has volunteered to sell cookies outside of grocery stores 2 more times in hopes of reaching her goal! I'm glad she is so self motivated, and I can only hope we get good weather for our next two cookie booth times. Colorado weather can change rapidly though, and our friends who worked on Fri. night stood outside in the snow for 2 hours! Now that is dedication! :-)

Sunday, February 15, 2009

I'm seeing green...

Green is my favorite color! I love it's every shade and hue from pistachio green to emerald green. I just LOVE green. So, it seemed to be the perfect choice for the bedding, our upstairs guest room, aka "my room" where I sleep when my dear hubby snores! Shhh, don't tell!

I lose interest quickly in things, and due to this short attention span, I don't like to spend much $$ on frequently changing decor. This way, I don't have guilt when I need a change! ha ha I'd like to paint the table black, and paint the room, plus I still need to press the curtains and adjust the length, (the one on the left I clipped too high!) but I wanted to show you my work in progress. I have decorated this room for less than $85 total! The bedding was a bed in a bag deal with dust ruffle, comforter, shams, pillows, etc...all for a total of $34! The best deal of all were my lovely curtains. The striped panels, were $4.97 each as they are sheets! A twin set of sheets to match the bedding was clearanced to less than $5, although I needed 4 sets as the fitted sheets wouldn't work. The "Nester" (see her link on our sidebar) gave instructions on no sew curtains, and this idea worked like a charm! Who would have known that twin flat sheets folded twice over were exactly 84inches, the same length as a store bought panel?

Toile boxes, 50% off at Hobby Lobby for a grand total of $5.97 for the two! :-)

Clearanced pillows at Target; $5-8, green pillows were included with the bedding!

Antique bird cage...a whopping $8; now do I want a bird?

My $80 room is near complete, I've got cash in my wallet from my frugal shopping and I get to enjoy my favorite color! See, I am seeing green literally and figuratively! :-)

Ashlyn's feeling a little better...just a croupy cough and sore throat remaining, but now Kyle has a sore throat today after returning from the youth group camping retreat...keep your fingers crossed the grown ups are spared! :-)

Friday, February 13, 2009

Valentine's Romance Interrupted

Happy Valentine's Day! We wish you a wonderful day filled with happiness and romance!

We had big plans...we were going to eat dinner at this swanky restaurant nestled high in the mountains of Boulder...

It has been at least a year and half since we have been out alone for a grown up dinner, and tonight was going to be our evening. Kyle is off camping with the middle school youth group, and Ashlyn was going to "Bunk with the Beasts" at the Denver Zoo with her Girl Scout troop. What great timing to have both kiddo's occupied on the same evening...ahhh, wine, fine dining, conversation that resolves around more than "My Little Ponies", math homework, and science projects. We were ready to relax...

Instead, Ashlyn had to miss the Valentine Party at school, and couldn't go to the zoo.

The school nurse called today. A fever, sore throat, and crying child await me in the office.

So, our romantic dinner will have to wait...poor Ashlyn will have to miss seeing the lions after dark, and opening Valentine's at school. Parenthood changes everything. Suddenly the glass of wine, the relaxing night out, all doesn't matter so much. Bringing down a fever and comforting a disappointed 7 year old takes precedence. Such is life, and we of course wouldn't wish it any other way.

We will celebrate Valentine's "family style" on Sat. night. We'll BBQ heart shaped hamburgers, I'll dye the milk pink, and sprinkle conversation hearts around the table. And, I think I may have to talk Tom into watching one of the sappiest love stories of all time, (and a personal favorite of mine! hee hee) "Somewhere in Time!" :-) If you haven't seen it, and are also going to be home on the most romantic night of the year, I suggest this love story that stands the test of time for best example of "romance interrupted." You'll love it and cry at the end, I promise!

Have a sappy, romantic, and wonderful day! :-)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Good Morning from Colorado!

Sometimes there isn't much happening that is note worthy, but then if I change my perspective, I realize that perhaps it is all noteworthy, as being alive to experience the mundane and the special is what this life of ours is all about!

Here is my "today"...

Sunrise over the pond...fresh snow is just beautiful!

Getting the table ready for my Women's Bible Study Valentine gathering...

The Girl Scout cookies have arrived! We'll be gettting them sorted and distributed as soon as possible. I'll be contacting you to arrange delivery! :-)

Off to run errands and meet a friend for lunch...

Have a good day friends, what are YOU doing today? I'd love to hear about your daily happenings...It doesn't have to be spectacular...even doing laundry is a gift when we look at how fortunate we are to just be alive! :-)

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Quick Fixes...

Ok ladies, I know we're all trying to cut back and watch how we spend our money...this idea Sofia shared had such an instant impact and cost only $9.99! Have you heard of bed risers? I had, but never though to use them. It was the first thing we did to both of the kids beds. The risers lift the bed up by 5 inches and allows dust ruffles to hang correctly and not drag on the floor, as well as give the bed more presence in the room. Until we get paint colors worked out, she had several quick fixes that were easy and inexpensive to bring color to walls and the room. If you don't have risers on your beds, run don't walk to your nearest Bed, Bath, and Beyond and pick up a
set! :-)

Cute valances are a solid color since Ashlyn has a very busy room on the other side. We got this particular style to hide the shades underneath since the tan color doesn't go with her pink and purple kitty theme. Valances are from Target...inexpensive for a room that will likely change several times as Ashlyn grows.

Another quick fix for a big wall are barn stars! Again, we don't have a color on Kyle's walls yet, and until we decide, the stars are a big impact item! You can paint them black, cream, etc...and they have a fun "Pottery Barn" look for a fraction of the price! (The little stars were $5.30 and the big 30 in. star $22 at "Real Deals!")

Kyle's bed on risers...

Another idea...

Do you see the "suitcases" on the floor? Well, we bought three of them. I am moving these all around, but once we sell a chair in the family room to make room for them, we will stack all three and make them into a side table and place a lamp on top! Ashlyn is using the trunk, which isn't in the photo, to store her writing journals so they are in the family room, but out of the way when she isn't using them. I've already found 3 potential homes for these and wanted to share the idea. Trunks, boxes, and suitcases are neat decorative elements. If you shop the house they are free! The smallest of these was $18 and the biggest $40. Surprisingly they are heavy, well made, and look much heartier than their lean price!

We're waiting on a black kitchen table set to expand on the french country theme I want to recreate, so there are 5 paint choices on the wall and a sample valance I'm experimenting with. Do you see the cute chandelier? Sofia suggested changing our simple silver one for this more interesting light fixure that will match the kitchen theme. There are beautiful ones for $500 plus, but this cutie cost $88 at Lowes! Not bad for a big impact!

Fun find...the neat clock is leather looking and matches the new leather chair we used in the living room. This 'alcove' will be painted a darker color than the rest of the walls. Those of you that know me, know that I have a clock obsession! If I could, I would talk Tom into letting me have a "Clock Wall!" I love clocks with faces and roman numerals and have them everywhere...I have yet to meet a clock I didn't like! HA HA

"Shopping" the house and rearranging accessories is such a great way to change things around for FREE!

If you are ready for a change and don't want to spend a fortune, I recommend bed risers, barn stars, and new lighting. Move things around from room to room and redesign a'll be happy you did and the change will do your heart good. It sure did mine! :-)

Sunday, February 8, 2009

I've missed you!

Hello again friends! It has been over a week since I last posted and I have missed you! You may remember me mentioning that you will know when life is busy in the Kofford Household as you won't be seeing me around "Blog World" much. That has been the case this week!

We are all doing just fine, and have had a busy week which explains my
absence. :-) Let's see if I can summarize in a few sentences since it is now after midnight! I am helping organize the 2nd grade Valentine Party in a few days. Classroom parties today are not like the ones from our childhoods. Remember having cupcakes and punch and being thrilled to have such a special snack during the day? Well, today's school parties involve much more...think games, crafts, treats, activities, helpers, a meal or multiple food choices, and more! Organizing these parties is like planning a bridal or baby shower! Ha Ha

I'm hosting two tables for Valentine's at our weekly Women's Bible Study this week, and have been busy trying to pull together a mini vacation for our spring break. Since these breaks no longer coordinate with Easter, I thought the timing when the kids are off at the end of March meant it would be easy to book a trip. How wrong I was. We've been rushing to get passports for a week long get away to the Bahamas, but then realized a day before booking the trip that the great package deal was not so great after all. So, we're back to the drawing board. Any ideas?

On a fun note, my friend Sofia has been visiting us! We've had a lot of fun catching up, and showing her the area. In addition to Sofia being a friend, she is also a decorator and came to help me focus on something cheerful after a challenging year! We've been decorating this big house....4,000 sq. feet in 4 days! Whew! From shopping for accessories, paint, fabric, window treatments, new lighting, etc...we've got this house looking great! It's fun having someone else to bounce ideas off of, and I have missed having a girl friend to take on shopping outings! Poor Sofia has been working like crazy putting up valances, hanging pictures, climbing ladders, etc...she'll be ready to go home just to get some rest! :-)

Lastly, we just got our package from the post office box with your kind letters and donations for the scholarship fund! Thank you so much for your generosity! This package had your envelopes and correspondence from mid January, so I am anxious to contact each of you to extend our thanks and keep you informed on how the funds will be used in the coming months! Please check our new scholarship blog at: for updates. If your name is not listed on the contributors sidebar please let me know. I can't thank you enough for your generosity in supporting this fund that will help many students and teachers in the months to come.

Off for now to get back to is now morning and Sofia has got the paint brushes out...before and after photos to come! Have a wonderful week and remember to live fully and savor every moment today!