December 28, 2012

Christmas Day

 Christmas-time is here! We spent Christmas with family and friends, enjoying each other's company, cooking, playing games, feasting on lots of goodies, and sharing gifts. Here's some moments we captured  of the day.

  Enjoy the holiday season. See ya soon!

December 22, 2012

Gift Series Part 5: The Stockings Were Hung

 Merry Christmas! Finally we are putting up the last of our Christmas decorations, including the stockings I made for the family.

I used a drop cloth my hubby purchased at the Home Depot for about $13. What a deal! I had to bleach it three times to get the color I wanted, but it was well worth it. I'm hoping these stockings will be in the family until the kids have moved on.
I'm sorry to say I forgot to take pictures of the process, but for a step by step tutorial on stenciling, stop by here

I'm taking a break over the holidays, but I will be back after Christmas. I wish you and your loved ones a joyful holiday season! Thanks for visiting my blog. See you soon.

December 20, 2012

Gift Series Part 4- Spreading Joy to Neighbors

We spent all day yesterday baking cookies for our neighbors. By the end of the day, I admit, I was flustered and ready to put my feet up. The kids and I decided we HAD to sample a little bite of each cookie to make sure they were tasty enough to share. One bite of a Peppermint Bark Cookie, and all our effort was worthwhile! 

When we were younger, my brother's friend always brought us a plate of homemade goodies for Christmas. I loved seeing all her creations, partly because they were different than the amazing treats my aunt spoils us with every year. Can you tell I have a touch of a sweet tooth? 

The kids were so excited to deliver the plates to our neighbors. Ben rehearsed what he would say when they opened the door. I'm grateful for my little elves. Sometimes having three extra sets of hands in the kitchen is challenging, but I love how much they enjoy cooking and baking. 

What are some of your traditional holiday goodies?

December 17, 2012

Gift Series Part 3

 I can't believe how quickly time is flying. Christmas is almost here and I am still at the sewing machine trying to finish last minute odds and ends. I foresee a few late nights this week. And possibly a trip to the chiropractor for my neck which is out from lots of sewing!

 These jewelry organizers are about ready to ship across the country. I painted some frames I found at the thrift store, covered one in drop cloth, and dressed them up in ribbons and hooks.

 The oval frame on the left is meant for earrings, but I don't have my ears pierced, so I have no earrings to display. You get the idea. Just hang your earrings on the ribbon. I lost my upholstery tacks I had originally planned on using to hang the vintage lace ribbon in place, so instead I busted out the hot glue gun and secured it along the middle, making sure to leave the top free for the earrings to hang.

To hang necklaces and bracelets, you can also use cool knobs, and thrift stores are a great spot to find any sized frame for a reasonable price. If you know the recipient has a lot of jewelry, you could make one large frame or a collection of several smaller sizes. I'm sending this pair with one additional cast iron hook I found on Etsy for additional space to hang necklaces.

 Well, I hope you are getting close to ready for the holidays. Wish me luck. I'm off to work on gifts for the girls.

December 8, 2012

A Get Well Gift

 For the past several weeks we have been making lots of chicken soup and tea with honey. This week it's my turn to be sick. When it came time to make dinner, I thought, "Wouldn't it be nice if someone could make us some soup so I can rest?" That's when I came up with this post, a 'get well' gift for a neighbor, or friend too sick to venture out in the cold for supplies, or a family in need of rest.

 If you have a thermos, or empty jar with a lid, fill it with hot homemade chicken soup. You can make a little basket  with a good loaf of bread, tea, lemon and honey, and various forms of medicine you know they need/like. Since they'll be spending time resting, you might add magazines or a good movie or favorite book. Just make sure to let them know if these are on loan, and label anything you need returned :)

 Sometime soon I hope to share our favorite "go-to" recipe for chicken vegetable soup. It's an easy dinner for a cold winter's night.

Stay well!

December 5, 2012

Gift Series Part 2

  Happy Advent! Thanks for following my series on homemade Christmas gifts. This one is perfect for Advent decorations,  but you can use it throughout the year too.

 All you need is wooden blocks, a hot glue gun, chalkboard paint, and, if you want, something to decorate the blocks. I'm making this for a friend who loves birds, so this festive critter was perfect for her Countdown to Christmas chalkboard.

 First, glue your blocks together. Then spray with chalkboard paint and let it dry. Repeat. Glue your decorations to the top and you are finished. You can easily complete this in an afternoon, if you start early enough to let the paint dry between coats.

 To use throughout the year, write the date on top and month on the bottom.