Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to all my followers.
Hope you all have a safe and happy holiday.

Friday, December 2, 2011

The job search goes on

Boy is this job searching wearing me out. n the past 2 months I have dropped of over 80 resumes and applied to a few dozen jobs on line. I have had 1 interview. They are looking for  a person who is bilingual in Spanish. I am not but they wanted to interview me anyway. The verdict is still out on that job.

I have been thinking about volunteering with the Boys and Girls Club. This will give me something to do while I am looking for work. Has anyone worked with this organization? I will be going down to check it out next week if I am feeling better. At the moment I have a cold so I will go after it is gone. I really hate being sick. I get nothing done. Well time to get some more rest. Hope you all have a great weekend.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thanksgiving Wishes

Wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Shabby Apple Giveaway

Hop on over to A Little Knick Knack for a chance to win this awsome skirt.

She is happy to offer you guys the Francine skirt from Shabby Apple (, from their assortment of women's dresses and skirts.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

No-Knit Scarf - Wearable

No-Knit Scarf: - Create this easy no-knit scarf in time to wear tomorrow with this free how-to series from Beverly's!

•Yarn (chunky or bulky)
•Fun Fur

1) Cut yarn, fun fur, ribbon trim and cording into two yard pieces.
We used the following:
•Yarn #1 – 8 pieces
•Yarn #2 – 8 pieces
•Fun Fur – 6 pieces
•Picot Edge Ribbon – 1 piece
•1/4 inch Satin Ribbon – 1 piece
•Gold & Burgundy Trim – 2 piece
•Gold & Burgundy Cord – 2 pieces
•Gold Cord – 4 pieces
2) Tie an overhand knot at the center of the fibers.
3) Working down one side, tie a second knot about 6 inches from the center knot.
4) Separate fibers after second knot into two sections, keeping wide trim pieces separate; braid each of the other sections for about 4 inches.
5) Tie a knot under braids. Tie another knot about 6 inches below.
6) Separate fibers into 4 to 6 groups; knot each group near the ends.
7) Repeat for second side of scarf, but braid between third & fourth knots for variety.
8) Trim ends and your new scarf is ready to wear or give as a gift!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Thinking about the holidays

Sitting here at my computer listening to Christmas music on Dish. I am putting together my Thanksgiving menu and getting my shopping list together. I was in Safeway earlier today and noticed that they had Butterball turkeys for $9.99. My freezer is getting reorganized so I can get one. This is the first year in a very long time that I am cooking the whole dinner. In the past it was Thanksgiving in a box. I would get the Thanksgiving box from Safeway. It was an easy way to go on a hectic schedule. This year everything will be made, not preheated and served.

I am also getting the Christmas lists together. This year should be easier because our whole family is bringing one gift per person. If you want a gift you bring a gift. We have a $25.00 limit. I have 2 together already I just need to figure out one more. I am making a movie night gift basket and a warm and cozy basket. 

The movie basket has a large popcorn bowl filled with microwave popcorn in 2 types. I plan on waiting for Target to have their movies for $3.50. I will also tuck some candy in there.

My warm and cozy basket has a small fleece blanket along with a coffee cup. I have put some hot chocolate, hot apple cider mix and assorted coffee. I also added a can of shortbread cookies. I will also pick up some chocolate to add later.

Well that is what I have been up to lately. Still job hunting with no luck. I have dropped off 80 something resumes in October. Haven't heard a peep. I know something will come up I just have to be patient.     

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Autumn Leaf Set

Craft a beautiful personalized card, frame and matching candle wrap just in time for fall festivities. Use the card as an invitation or thank you. Paint a plain frame and embellish it with cork, leaves, fiber, and gold. Make a candle wrap to match the frame. Layered papers add dimension!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Job Search

Well I didn't realize how grueling job searching is. Since I graduated and got my degree on October 3rd, I have been hitting the streets in search of a job. I have also been applying on line. Has anyone ever applied on-line? Very time consuming. It takes about an hour for just one application. I really hate it. I prefer to apply in person call me old fashion, but I strongly believe that a first impression makes a big difference. I will try not to be missing in action please bare with me.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

East Harvest Wreath

Add a warm touch to a front door using autumn's bounty of free and colorful craft supplies. Incorporate the season's natural decorations into a welcoming wreath. Start with a basic wreath form (either made from florist's foam or a plain grapevine wreath) and attach gourds, mini pumpkins and leaves using hot-glue or wire.
You can get all these items at your local Dollar Store.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Trench Coat

My new trench.

First off let me say that I have been searching for a trench coat for 2 years. My main problem was money or lack of. Second thing was if I found one I could afford it didn't fit.

I went to Savers with my daughter to find a few shirts that she could wear for work. I also  was looking for a pair of beige or cream colored slacks to add to my work clothes wardrobe.

I found two pairs of pant that fit so I went to browse the coats, like I do every time I go. There it was, a practical brand new, tan, long trench coat. It even had a detachable hood. I checked and it was my size and it fit beautifully. I was almost afraid to look at the price. I was shocked to see that it was under $20.00, $17.99 to be exact.

I was so excited even though I had to put the pants back because I only had $25.00 to spend. If you look long enough and are patient you will find what you need at your local second hand clothing stores. 

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

I love shoes

I love to get a great deal on shoes. That can be a challenge when you live in a small city and little money. I did manage to find some cute shoes at cheap prices. So here are a few of my finds.

This is a cute and very comfortable pair that I got at The Cancer Society's Discovery Store here in town.I only paid $5.00.

I got these cute little grey flats at Forever 21. I was in the checkout line when I noticed these in the bin next to me. They were only $4.00. I had to get them.

I found this next pair a Sheik Shoes. They are a brown snakeskin looking pair of heels. I had to have them. I was lucky they were on clearence for $9.99, which is in my budget.

These last 2 pairs I just recently ordered from Kmart. I did not know they had a runway line that was affordable. The first pair is a brown cutout heel. Cost $13.99 what a steal.

This next pair which I just love also from Kmart was $14.99

I an now on the look out for a bootie. The ones I had just recently fell apart. I wore them everywhere. So you can have great looking shoes that are affordable too.

Happy shoe hunting.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Gone for so long

I am sorry I have not posted since July.I have been so busy with this last quarter of school. I graduate on October 3rd. I didn't realize how expensive it wad to shop for business clothes. I have been putting together outfits for my business look. Since I don't have very much money to spend on clothes I have been hunting and searching the local Thrift stores. I have gotten some great finds that I plan on sharing with you as soon as I can load the pictures on my daughter's laptop.
My computer crashed over the summer, since I have gotten it fixed it won't let me upload pictures. I am not going to put any more money into it. I plan on getting a new one at tax time.
Anyway like I was saying I plan on sharing my outfits with you and where I picked them up. I will also let you know the price. The only thing that I spent more money on is my shoes. I like to have fairly comfortable shoes. 
I should have some more posts in a few days.

Monday, June 27, 2011

4TH Of July Wreath

My friend Melissa sent this to me. Make this insanely simple wreath and look like a star this 4TH Of July. Hang it on your front door to welcome your friends and family.

You will need:

11 yards 1" wide red-white-and- blue ribbon
20" grapevine wreath
Three 4" x 6" American flags
Floral wire


Weave 2 1/2 yards of ribbon through the grapevine wreath. Glue the ends of the ribbons together; this is the bottom of the wreath.

Arrange three flags at the bottom of the wreath in a fan shape so they slightly overlap; glue the flags in place. Use a small amount of glue to secure the edges of the flags where they overlap.

Cut two 36" lengths of ribbon and fashion a small multi-loop bow from each piece; tie with floral wire. Glue a bow to each side of the wreath.

Use the remaining ribbon to make one large multi-loop bow. Glue bow to the bottom of the wreath to cover glued sections of ribbon and flags.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

3 Bean Salad

1 can each (drained) kidney, wax, and green beans
1/3 c. each oil, sugar, and vinegar
dash each salt and celery seed

Combine all ingredients. Cover and chill all day.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Floral Sponge Plate & Wineglass

Paint this floral tableware that's perfect for a party or everyday use. Enjoy entertaining with this sponge-painted plate with delicate flowers and lacy edging.


10-inch clear glass plate
2 wineglasses, 8 inches tall with 3/4-inch diameter base
Delta PermEnamel Air-Dry paints:
Citrus yellow #45-005
Dark goldenrod #45-042
Burnt sienna #45-010
Mediterranean blue #45-139
Victorian rose #45-128
Pine green #45-129
Peony #45-131
Ultra white #45-029
Royal & Langnickel paintbrushes:
Series 2170 filbert size 2
Series 2250 liner size 10/0
Series 4160 angular, 1/4-inch
Delta PermEnamel Surface Conditioner
Delta Air-Dry PermEnamel Satin Glaze
Blue or white shop towel
Water basin
Palette paper
Tracing paper
Kitchen sponge cut into a 1 1/2 x 1-inch rectangle
Cotton swabs

Project Notes

Refer to photo throughout.
Design pattern is available here to download.



Wash the glass surface with soap and water, rinse with vinegar and let dry. Apply surface conditioner according to directions. Keep your hands oil-free.

This design will be painted onto the glassware freehand, therefore, practice the strokes with tracing paper over the pattern until you feel comfortable enough to apply them to the surface.



The brush will be loaded and blended the same way throughout the construction of the rose. Double-load the angular brush with the lighter color on the long bristles and the darker color on the short bristles. Blend the brush on the palette paper, working on the same blending path throughout the painting.

For the back petal, load the long end of the brush with a mixture of two parts ultra white to one part peony. Load the short end with Victorian rose. With the long end of the brush at the top and the short end at the bottom, paint an upside down U.

Reload the brush with more ultra white in the mixture. Paint a right side up U under the first petal.

The side petals are loaded the same way; lay the short bristles at the bulb of the flower, slide it along the bulb connecting/blending the two dark colors together, slide past the middle of the bulb. The two outer-side petals are done the same. The last small petal is a small S stroke slid along and inside the bottom petals.

Small Rose

Paint in the center petals and two petals on each side.


The angular brush is loaded the opposite way the rose was done, with the short end of the brush loaded with the lighter color and the longer end with the darker color.

Make a mix of ultra white and pine green. Load the short end with this mix and the long end with pine green. Blend on palette paper.

Stroke in the laying down S stroke on both sides of the rose. With the 10/0 liner, paint in the small stems.

Baby's Breath

Load a cotton swab with ultra white and dab in the baby's breath at base of glass as desired.


The plate is painted on the reverse/underside side of the plate so that food will not come in contact with the paint. Apply the surface conditioner to the underside and let dry.

Paint the design in reverse, that is, with the highlights first and the base coat second. Turn the plate over after each stroke to see if you like it. If a correction needs to be made, wipe it off with a cotton swab and repeat step.

With the 10/0 liner and ultra white, make a small upside down U, and then a larger one. Thin with water if needed, but not too thin or it will be too transparent.


Paint pollen dots with a stylus, dotting in before painting the center or the petals. Use ultra white for the top ones and burnt sienna for the bottom ones. Let dry.

Paint the top of the center ultra white and the lower half dark goldenrod.

With the size 2 filbert, paint the top three petals ultra white. Paint the other petals with a double-loaded brush. Load the brush with dark goldenrod, holding the brush perpendicular to the roof, and carefully dip only the tip into the white. Paint a petal, turn the brush over to get the white off the other side, make a third petal with what is left on the brush.

Reload the brush for the remaining petals, repeating the above procedure. Turn the project around as you work, rather than stroking upside down.

Sponge with Mediterranean blue and ultra white.


Apply at least two coats of glaze with the filbert brush, covering only the painted areas and allowing to dry thoroughly between coats.
Design by Patricia McCormack Eisenbraun

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Chrysanthemum Organizer

At home or at the office, this pretty organizer holds a memo pad, personal date book and address book.
Design by Carol Nartowicz

Skill Level:   Beginner


•1 sheet clear 7-count plastic canvas
•1 sheet yellow 7-count plastic canvas
•Uniek Needloft plastic canvas yarn as listed in color key
•#16 tapestry needle
•Address book approximately 3 5/8" x 6 1/4"
•Personal organizer approximately 3 5/8" x 6 1/4"
•3" x 5" notepad
Grafts - Click on link at bottom of page


1.Cut organizer lining pieces from yellow plastic canvas according to graphs. Lining pieces will remain unstitched.

2.Cut front, back and spine from clear plastic canvas according to graphs.

3.Stitch front, back and spine following graphs, working uncoded area on center front with white Continental Stitches. Work embroidery over white Continental Stitches.

4.Place lining pieces on back side of corresponding stitched pieces, making sure inside edges match on front and back pieces, and horizontal slit on front lining is at the top.

5.Using baby yellow throughout, Whipstitch inside edges on front to right side of spine through all four thicknesses. Whipstitch inside edges on back to left side of spine through all four thicknesses. Whipstitch lining pieces to stitched pieces around outside edges.

6.Insert note pad in top horizontal slit on front lining. Insert personal organizer and address book in remaining slits.

Link for project

Monday, March 21, 2011

Tin-can & Glass-jar Lights

Set your backyard, porch or terrace aglow with theses fun lights.

Outdoor lighting doesn't have to be complicated or expensive to install. All it takes are some everyday materials and a little imagination to set your backyard, porch or terrace aglow. Below you'll find instruction on how to make both tin-can lights and glass-jar lights.

Tin-Can Lights

Step 1: Make a pattern of holes on paper to wrap around your can by using a photocopier to enlarge one of the three designs shown at right. You can also cut a piece of paper to size and copy a design onto it freehand. Or make your own original pattern!

Step 2: To copy the circle designs from the patterns, use a compass and pencil to draw concentric circles and mark equidistant points around the outer circumference. Draw lines from the center to these points to divide the circle into even sectors. A dot at each intersection indicates where a hole is to be made.

Step 3: For the diamond design, draw a small diamond shape made of two equilateral triangles, and enclose this in two proportionately larger triangles. Add dots to the outlines at evenly spaced intervals to indicate holes.

Step 4: Tape the paper pattern to the can. Place one end of the dowel lengthwise in the vise; slip can over the other end.

Step 5: At each dot on the pattern, make a divot in the can with a large nail (this will help guide the drill), and then enlarge with a 1/8-in. drill bit. Make holes for the handles near the top of the can in the same way.

Step 6: Make a handle by bending a 20-inch length of wire at its midpoint, then bending small hooks at each end to attach to can. Twist other end into a small loop for hanging. Paint cans if desired (avoid water-based or latex paints). Insert a candle.

Glass-Jar Lights

Step 1: Measure circumference of jar neck, add 3 in., and cut a piece of tie wire to this length. Bend the wire around the jar neck to form a loose circle, and use pliers to hook the two ends securely together. With a screwdriver, twist the wire to form two eye loops on opposite sides of the jar.

Step 2: For the hanger, cut another piece of wire, 3 ft. long. At its midpoint, use pliers to twist a loop for hanging.

Step 3: Thread 1 in. of each end of the hanger wire through the eye loops; secure the wire by twisting the ends back on themselves.

Step 4: If desired, embellish jar with glass paints, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Make a bed of sand 2 inches deep in each jar, and insert a candle.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Classic Italian Pasta Salad

Classic Italian Pasta Salad


8 ounces rotelle or spiral pasta, cooked and drained
2-1/2 cups assorted cut-up fresh vegetables (broccoli, carrots, tomatoes, bell peppers, cauliflower, onions and mushrooms)
1/2 cup cubed mozzarella or cheddar cheese
1/3 cup sliced pitted ripe olives (optional)
1 cup Wish-Bone® Italian Dressing


Combine all ingredients except Wish-Bone® Italian Dressing in large bowl. Add Dressing; toss well. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

NOTE: If preparing a day ahead, refrigerate, then stir in 1/4 cup additional Wish-Bone Dressing before serving.

Also terrific with Wish-Bone ® Robusto Italian, Fat Free! Italian, House Italian, Ranch, Light Ranch, Fat Free! Ranch, Creamy Caesar, Red Wine Vinaigrette or Fat Free! Red Wine Vinaigrette Dressings

MAKES: 8 side-dish servings PREP TIME: 20 minutes

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Mardi Gras Carrot Loaf

Mardi Gras Carrot Loaf


3/4 c. cooking oil
1 1/2 c. sugar
2 eggs
2 c. grated carrots
1 (8 oz.) can crushed pineapple and juice
3 c. flour, sifted
1 tsp. soda
3 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla
1 c. chopped nuts


-Blend sugar, cooking oil, and carrots.
-Stir in pineapple, salt, and soda.
-Add eggs. Beat well.
-Add flour, cinnamon, vanilla, and nuts; blend well. -Bake 1 hour at 350 degrees in greased and floured loaf pans (2)

Saturday, February 26, 2011


Check out the snow here in Salinas,CA.
It rarely snows here.
This is 5 minutes worth.
I hope it snows some more.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Woven Ribbons

Here is a neat project that was sent to me. It is very unique and creative.

Woven Ribbons

Rich jewel tones in dusky tweed yarns create the colorful palette in this gem of an afghan. It would make a beautiful holiday or housewarming gift.

Skill Level - Beginner

Finished Size
49 x 66 inches


Medium (worsted) weight yarn:
16 oz/800 yds/454g soft white
Tweed medium (worsted) weight yarn:
4 oz/200 yds/113g each moss, mulberry, denim, coffee, cranberry, frosty green and charcoal
2 oz/100 yds/57g lavender
Size I/9/5.5mm crochet hook or size needed to obtain gauge
Tapestry needle


1 pattern rep = 2 3/4 inches; 5 cl rows = 3 1/2 inches
Pattern Notes

Leave an 8-inch length of yarn when joining and fastening off each yarn.

Afghan is crocheted vertically.

Special Stitches

Cluster (cl): Holding back last lp of each st on hook, 3 dc in same st, yo, pull through all lps on hook.

Join with hdc: With slip knot on hook, yo, insert hook in indicated st, yo, pull up lp, complete as hdc.



Row 1: With soft white, ch 215, sc in 2nd ch from hook, [ch 3, sk next 2 chs, sc in next ch] across, turn. Fasten off. (71 ch-3 sps)

Row 2 (WS): Using soft white, join with hdc (see Special Stitches) in first sc, ch 1, sc in first ch-3 sp, [ch 3, sc in next ch-3 sp] across to last sc, ch 1, hdc in last sc, turn. Fasten off.

Row 3 (RS): Join moss with sc in hdc, ch 3, sk first ch-1 sp, working in front of next ch-3 sp of row 2, cl (see Special Stitches) in sc directly below on row 1, ch 3, *[sc in next ch-3 sp, ch 3] twice, working in front of ch-3 sp of row 2, cl in next sc directly below on row 1, ch 3, rep from * across to last ch-1 sp, sk ch-1 sp, sc in last hdc, turn. Fasten off.

Row 4 (WS): Join soft white with hdc in first sc, ch 1, sc in first ch-3 sp, [ch 3, sc in next ch-3 sp] across to last sc, ch 1, hdc in last sc, turn. Fasten off.

Row 5 (RS): Join mulberry with sc in hdc, ch 3, sk next ch-1 sp, working in front of next ch-3 sp, cl in cl directly below, ch 3, *[sc in next ch-3 sp, ch 3] twice, working in front of next ch-3 sp, cl in cl directly below, ch 3, rep from * across to last ch-1 sp, sk ch-1 sp, sc in last hdc, turn. Fasten off.

Row 6: Rep row 4.

Row 7: Rep row 5 with denim.

Row 8: Rep row 4.

Row 9: Rep row 5 with coffee.

Row 10: Rep row 4.

Row 11: Rep row 5 with cranberry.

Row 12: Rep row 4.

Row 13: Rep row 5 with frosty green.

Row 14: Rep row 4.

Row 15: Rep row 5 with charcoal.

Row 16: Rep row 4.

Row 17: Rep row 5 with moss.

Next rows: [Rep rows 4–17 consecutively] 8 times.

Next row: Rep rows 4–14 once.

Last row (RS): Join charcoal with sc in first hdc, ch 2, sk next ch-1 sp, working in front of next ch-3 sp, cl in cl directly below, ch 2, *[sc in next ch-3 sp, ch 2] twice, working in front of next ch-3 sp, work cl in cl directly below, ch 2, rep from * across to last ch-1 sp, sk ch-1 sp, sc in last hdc. Fasten off.


Row 1 (RS): Working in last worked row of Afghan, join lavender with sl st in first sc, ch 2, dc in same sc, sk next 2 chs, *(sl st, ch 2, dc) in next st, sk next 2 chs, rep from * across to last sc, sl st in last sc. Fasten off.

Row 2 (RS): Working in starting ch on opposite side of row 1, join lavender with sl st in first ch, ch 2, dc in same ch, sk next 2 chs, *(sl st, ch 2, dc) in next ch, sk next 2 chs, rep from * across to last ch, sl st in last ch. Fasten off.


Cut 2 strands of matching color each 16 inches in length for each row. Fold 2 matching strands in half, pull fold through, pull all ends, including ends from each row, through fold. Pull ends to tighten. Attach Fringe with matching colors on each end of Afghan. Trim ends evenly.

Design by Anne Halliday

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Create a Box of Love

Sorry this is late but my computer was gone for about two weeks. Better late than never.

Create a Box of Love

Cover a box with pretty papers and embellishments and make coordinating cards in minutes. It’s pretty enough to display in your parlor during Valentine’s Day season.

Finished size: 2 1/4" x 4 3/8" x 5"
Skill: 1 Time: 1 Cost: 1

You will need:

• 2 1/4" x 4 3/8" x 5" flip-lid box
• Boho Blooms Collection*:
- Three 12" x 12" coordinating scrapbook papers*: Pink Passion Flourish,
Orange Delight Paper, Orange Delight Stripe
- 1" diameter pink fabric button*
- Round chipboard charm*
- "Live, Laugh, Love" chipboard sticker*
- Shaped jewels*
- Flower strip sticker sheet*
• 2 1/2" of 1/8" ivory satin ribbon
• Metal ruler*
• Scissors*
• Glue stick*
• Foam mounting tape*
*The following products were used for this project: The Paper Company/TPC Studio Boho Bloom Collection scrapbook paper, fabric button, chipboard charms, stickers, jewels • Elmer's Craft Bond extra-strength glue stick, foam mounting • Elmer's X-Acto rotary paper trimmer, metal ruler, precision-tip scissors.

Note: See end of article for product information.

STEP 1: Wrap outside of box. Cut a 4 3/4" x 12" strip from paper selected for outside of box. Note: Strip of paper is approx 1/2" wider than box to allow covering edges. Star at front of lid and use glue stick to wrap and attach paper across lid, down back, and across bottom. Wrap and glue extra width of paper to cover box edges, clipping paper at corners. For sides, measure depth of box plus 1/4" and cut 12" strips. Wrap and glue paper around outside edge of box, piecing as necessary. Cover edge by folding and gluing extra paper to inside of box.

STEP 2: Wrap inside of box. Measure inside width of box. Cut selected paper into 12" strips. Note: Strip will fit evenly with box edges. Glue strip to inside of lid, down inside back, and across inside bottom of box, piecing as needed. Measure and cut strips to fit inside the side edges. Glue in place.

STEP 3: Make closure. Glue fabric button to front of box. Cut a 2 ½" length of ribbon. Thread cut ends of ribbon through hole in one round, chipboard charm. Determine length of ribbon needed to loop around button. Glue ribbon ends to back of charm. Glue charm to inside of lid.

STEP 4: Embellish box. Wrap floral sticker band around lower half of sides and front of box, piecing as needed. Attach shaped jewel sticker to lower right corner of lid. Attach "Live, Laugh, Love" chipboard sticker attach to upper left corner of top of box using two layers of foam mounting tape for added dimension.

STEP 5: Make cards. Cut four 4" x 9" pieces of coordinating papers. Fold in half. Insert in box.

Elmer's Products, Inc.

The Paper Company/ TPC Studio

Friday, February 4, 2011

Craft: Paper Plate Valentine Card Holder

Craft: Paper Plate Valentine Card Holder


Two 10" Paper or Plastic Plates
4' Ribbon
Hole punch
12" Lace
Tacky Glue


Cut one of the paper plates in half. Hold the plates fronts together and punch all around the lip approximately every inch. Beginning at what would be the top, lace all around, leaving an 8" tail for hanging. Glue lace across the top edge of the front plate. Cut hearts out of additional plates. Glue to front to decorate.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Valentine's Day Truffles

Valentine's Day Truffles

1/3 cup honey
1/2 cup (4 ounces) semisweet chocolate, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup (4 ounces) bittersweet chocolate, cut into small pieces
1 stick butter, cut into small pieces
2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons dark rum
1 cup chocolate sprinkles, for rolling
3/4 teaspoon coarse (but somewhat small size) sea salt

In a small skillet, simmer the honey until it becomes medium brown in color and has a light, caramel scent. Remove from heat and keep warm.

In a medium bowl, combine the 2 types of chocolate and butter. Place the bowl over a pot of simmering water and melt the chocolate, making sure to stir often. Once the chocolate has completely melted remove the bowl from the heat and whisk in the caramelized honey, rum and powdered sugar. Transfer mixture to a cool bowl and allow it to "set" a little, about 5 minutes.

Combine the sprinkles and salt in a bowl. Using your hands roll the chocolate mixture into small balls, about 1 inch in diameter. Roll them in the chocolate sprinkle/salt mixture until they are generously coated. Place on serving tray or store them in an airtight container.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Lemonade Sugar Cookies

Lemonade Sugar Cookies

1 cup sugar
1 cup butter
2 eggs
3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 can (6 ounces) frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
extra Sugar (not confectioners)

Cream sugar and butter. Add eggs and beat until light and fluffy. Sift flour and soda together.

Add alternately with 1/2 cup lemonade concentrate. Drop by teaspoonfuls, 2 inches apart, onto an ungreased baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven for 8 minutes or until lightly browned edges. Brush hot cookies with remaining lemonade and sprinkle with sugar. Remove to wire rack to cool.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Boot Scootin' Birdhouse

This was so cute I had to share. Link to website at the end.

Boot Scootin' Birdhouse

Add a little Western d├ęcor to your yard with this unique design.

What You Will Need:

One cowboy boot
One 1- x 2-inch 8-foot pine board
One 1- x 6-inch 8-foot rough cedar board
3 to 5 feet of sisal rope
One pair of leather bootlaces or 3 feet of leather lacing (from a craft store)
20 to 30 1- to 1-1/2-inch nails
Two 5/8-inch brass wood screws

Recommended Tools:

Drill bits (1/16-inch and 5/16-inch)
1/4-inch hole punch

Boot Prep

Cut a 1-inch hole midway up the boot. One way to do this is to trace around a quarter. (This will create the perfect-sized hole for a wren.)

Using the hole punch, punch holes all around the opening. Make sure your holes are at least 1/8 inch away from the entrance hole to avoid tearing. Use a piece of leather lacing at least 2 feet long, and lace around the hole. To finish it, tie a double knot on the inside of the boot.

Using the hole punch, make two holes on the front and back of the boot at the top. You'll use these later.

Using a 5/16-inch drill bit, drill two to three holes in the boot's sole for drainage.

Wooden Frame Prep

To determine the correct length for your frame boards, place the pine board inside the front part of the boot. Add roughly 2 inches and cut two pieces of that length.

Cut a 45-degree angle on one end of each of these boards. (This is the hardest cut of the whole project, so if you can do this, the rest should be easy!)

From the original pine board, cut another two lengths, one 2-1/8 inch and the other 3-1/4 inch. (These will be your spacers, and you might need to adjust them for boots with wider shafts.)

Cut two 6-inch lengths of cedar from the fence board for the roof.

To assemble the frame, the 45-degree angles will face away from each other. The 2-1/8-inch piece of wood will connect the bottom, while the 3-1/4 inch spacer is roughly 8 inches above that (photos above).

To keep the boards from splitting, drill pilot holes with a 1/16-inch drill bit. Nail boards in place, using two or three nails at each connection.

Place the two cedar roof lengths at right angles. Drill and nail the two pieces together using at least six nails. Then place the roof over the frame and drill and nail into place, using at least three nails on each side.

Using the 5/16-inch drill bit, drill two holes in the roof eaves and attach a 2-foot length of sisal rope for hanging.

Put It All Together

Slide the wooden frame into the boot. Use brass wood screws to attach the boot to the wooden frame (through the holes you punched earlier). These screws won't rust, and you can easily remove them for cleaning.

Decorate any way you like. I added a bit of extra rope to mine.

To attract house wrens, hang the boot from a tree or other support about 6 to 10 feet above the ground.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Critter Love Bug Bags

I had to share these adorable gift bags that I found. Instructions are below or you can visit the web link at the bottom of the page. 

Critter Love Bug Bags


Nothing says you adore your Valentine more than when you give these Ladybug, Bumblebee, or Butterfly Bags filled with treats or cookies!


• White paper favor bags, three 3"x5"
• Craft foam: white, red
• Construction paper or card stock: yellow, white, black, pink
• Large conversational heart candies
• DecoArt® Americana® Acrylic Paints: Lamp Black, Purple Cow, Napthol Red, Saffron Yellow
• Ellison Sizzix® Machine and Dies: Hearts Tipsy, Heart Flowers, Heart Scallop
• Wiggle eyes, six
• Chenille stems, three
• Paper glue

The Basic Stuff

scissors, ruler, paintbrush, newspaper (to cover work surface)

How To Make It

1 On covered work surface, paint outside of bags Saffron Yellow (bee), Purple Cow (butterfly) and Napthol Red and Lamp Black (ladybug). Let dry.

2 For antennae, cut chenille stems in half. Twist chenille stems around pencil to coil. Glue antennae on top edge of each bag. Glue wiggle eyes on center of bags.

3 For bee, measure and cut four ½"x5¼" black paper strips (stripes). Glue stripes, evenly spaced, across bag. For wings, use machine and Scallop Heart die to cut two white foam hearts and Tipsy Heart die to cut two yellow paper hearts. Glue yellow hearts onto white hearts. Glue wings on front of bee.

4 For butterfly, use machine and Scallop Heart die to cut two white foam hearts and Tipsy Heart die to cut two pink paper hearts and two white paper hearts. Glue white paper hearts on pink hearts. Glue pink hearts on white foam hearts. Glue wings on front of butterfly.

5 For ladybug, use machine and Scallop Heart die to cut two red foam hearts and Heart Flowers die to cut 10 black paper hearts. Glue black hearts randomly on red foam hearts. Glue red hearts on front of ladybug.

6 Glue conversational heart candies down center of wings. Let dry.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Apple Strudel Pancake

Apple Strudel Pancake

1 stick butter
5-6 large apples (or 2 cans (20 oz each) pie-sliced apples, drained)
6 large eggs
1-1/2 cups milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup flour
1 tsp ground cinnamon
3 tbs/ sugar
Brown sugar to taste

Melt butter in a 9 x 13 x 2" baking pan for 10 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Add apple slices and bake for 10 minutes. Combine eggs, milk and vanilla; beat well. Add flour, sugar and cinnamon to milk mixture. Pour batter over apples and sprinkle with brown sugar. Bake for 30 minutes or until browned and puffed. Serve immediately. Serves eight. NOTE: If using canned apples, omit baking apple slices for 10 minutes.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Prize-Winning Pot Roast

I got this great recipe from Gooseberry Patch. My family loved it so I thought I would share it with all my blogging friends.

Prize-Winning Pot Roast

3-1/2 to 5-lb. beef chuck roast
2 10-3/4 oz. cans cream of celery soup
1-1/2 oz. pkg. onion soup mix
1 to 2 c. red wine or beef broth
1/2 c. frozen apple juice concentrate
4 to 6 potatoes, peeled and quartered
4 to 8 carrots, peeled and cut into 3-inch pieces
1-lb. pkg. sliced mushrooms
8 stalks celery, chopped
1 t. salt
1/8 t. pepper

Place beef in a roasting pan; top with soup and soup mix. Stir in wine or broth; cover. Bake at 350 degrees for one hour; add apple juice, potatoes and carrots. Bake for another 30 minutes; remove from oven. Add mushrooms, celery, salt and pepper; bake for one additional hour, uncovering for the last 30 minutes. Serves 4 to 6.

Enjoy this recipe from Our Favorite Comfort Foods.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Snow & Ice Jewelry Set

Bead your own boutique-worthy accessories in sparkling winter shades. You'll love the look!

size: approx 8"

you'll need


• Beadalon® Silver-Plated findings: eight 2" headpins, two French ear wires, lobster clasp
• Artistic Wire® Non-Tarnish Silver wire, 18-gauge
• Swarovski Elements Aquamarine (202) bicone crystals: eight 4mm, two 6mm
• Swarovski Elements White crystal pearls, four 6mm
• Oval cracked glass beads, 12
• Fluted silver spacer beads, 10
• Round AB finish cut glass beads, four 8mm
• Silver snowflake charm


• Pliers: round-nosed, chain-nosed
• Wire snips

what to do


1 Thread beads as shown onto two head pins to create earring dangles.

2 Use chain-nosed pliers to bend each headpin at a 90° angle about ¼" from top bead. Wrap headpin around round-nosed pliers to create loop. Wrap excess wire three times around headpin; trim excess.

3 Use chain-nosed pliers to open loop at bottom of ear wire, add earring dangle, and then close ear wire loop.


1 Thread assorted beads as shown onto six headpins. Repeat Earrings Step 2 to create a wrapped-wire loop at top of each headpin.

2 Use wire snips to cut twelve 1-¼" lengths from 18-gauge wire.

3 Use chain-nosed pliers to bend one wire length at a 90° angle about ½" from one end. Use round-nosed pliers to create a loop. Thread one oval bead onto wire. Create a second loop at opposite wire end. Create a total of 12 beaded links.

4 Use chain-nosed pliers to open one end of each link. Join links by inserting closed end of one link into open end of another, then closing links. Attach lobster clasp to last open end of bracelet.

5 Embellish bracelet with snowflake charm and beaded baubles created in Step 1 as shown. Open link and insert loop of charm or bauble; close link.

Tip: Add as many or as few charms and baubles as you wish. This bracelet style offers unlimited design options.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Crispy Peanut Butter Bars

10 oz bag peanut butter chips
6 1/2 cups crisp rice cereal
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup honey roasted peanuts, chopped
12 oz bag semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup butter or margarine

Line a 13x9" baking pan with foil to extend above narrow ends of pan. Microwave peanut butter chips and butter in a glass bowl, stirring at 20 seconds intervals, until smooth. Add cereal and stir until coated.

Spread cereal mixture into pan, pressing into an even layer. Place pan in freezer 10 min. or until firm. Melt chocolate Chips as directed on bag. Add corn syrup, stir until blended. Spread over cereal mixture, sprinkle with nuts. Refrigerate 1 hour.

Lift foil by ends onto cutting board. Cut crosswise into 10 strips, then cut each strip into 6 bars, then serve.

Makes 60 Peanut Butter Bars

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Handy Hints

Handy Hint #1

To prevent oven racks from sticking, rub the wall ridges they
Slide in and out on with steel wool pads. Rinse and dry, then
Wipe down with vegetable oil, and they'll glide smoothly.

Handy Hint #2:

Cutting your shower time by a few minutes can reduce your hotwater heating costs by 33%, a savings of about $200 per year!Save even more by using cold water to wash clothes..

Handy Hint 3#

Get marker of the wall with rubbing alcohol! Simply buff away the marks with a clean cloth dipped in rubbing alcohol.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Goldfinger Necklace & Earrings

Rich, saturated shades of khaki green and indigo blue warm up cold winter nights with flashes of gold crystal pearl and metal accents.


12 indicolite blue Swarovski crystal square channel links
Swarovski crystal bicone beads: 8 (6mm) indicolite blue and 18 (6mm) khaki green
9 (8mm) gold crystal pearls
Gold 12mm flat disk spacers with open centers: 8 (2-hole), 2 (1-hole)
41 large gold jump rings
19 gold eye pins
2 gold French ear wires
Gold toggle clasp
Round-nose pliers
Chain-nose pliers
Flush cutters

Finished Sizes

26 1/4 inches (including clasp)


2 inches long

Project notes: If the bar on toggle clasp will not fit through round end, add jump rings to end of necklace. Make sure to turn eye pin top and bottom loops perpendicular to each other for chain fluidity.



Slide a pearl onto an eye pin; use round-nose pliers to form a loop above pearl. Trim excess wire. Repeat for each pearl. Set aside.

Slide the following onto an eye pin: khaki green bicone bead, indicolite blue bicone bead and a khaki green bicone bead. Form a loop above top bead; trim excess wire. Repeat seven additional times. Set aside.

Open a jump ring and slide on round half of clasp and a square channel link; close jump ring. Using jump rings to attach pieces, connect the following sequence: pearl eye pin, square channel link, bicone-beaded eye pin, 2-hole flat disk spacer, pearl eye pin, 2-hole flat disk spacer and a bicone-beaded eye pin.

Repeat sequence in step 3 three times.

In the same manner, attach a square channel link, remaining pearl eye pin and square channel link.

Open a jump ring and attach to end link. Slide on another jump ring. Close first jump ring. Open last jump ring and slide on remaining half of clasp; close jump ring. Use chain-nose pliers to go back through and close all jump rings securely.


Slide a khaki green bicone bead onto an eye pin; form a loop above bead. Trim excess wire.

Open a jump ring and slide on a square channel link and beaded eye pin; close jump ring. Open another jump ring and slide on opposite loop on beaded eye pin and 1-hole flat disk spacer. Close jump ring.

Open loop on ear wire; slide on remaining loop on square channel link. Close loop.

Repeat steps 1–3 for second earring.

Sources: Swarovski crystal components from Swarovski Ltd.; spacers and findings from Beadalon.