Tuesday, October 26, 2010

It's almost Christmas!!!

I realized today that Monday is November 1, which means  many things, one of which is that one of my favorite radio stations, 102.5 KEZK, will be going to all Christmas music all of the time starting on Monday.  YAYS!  It's their signature move and I LOVE it!  I know, I know...it's not Christmas, but to me, Christmas is celebrated all year.  Besides the fact that my religious beliefs are that 'JESUS is the reason for the season,' I feel that since it is, why does it have to be celebrated only one day?  I love everything about it...the REASON, where I have several creches (nativities and scenes) displayed throughout the house, right alongside Santas (he may not be the reason, but he's a symbol...St. Nicholas, the symbol that it's better to give than to receive, because that's how the gift giving began...this, we can do all year long, as well).  anyhoo, I've been listening the Christmas cds on and off for the past month or so.  All who knows me, knows that I enjoy decorating my home for the season.  Where I tend to put up many decorated trees, some just small, simplie tabletop trees, others, like the living room and master bedroom, more elaborate.  I tend to go overboard...last year, one of my oldest daughter's friends came by and said that it looked like Santa had thrown up on my tree, lol.  Well, some of you may not know this, but the tree in my master bedroom stays up 365 days a year.  It's white, usually with purple lights (they can be difficult to find with white caps and wire, though), and has a few Victorian pink balls on it, along with berry vines.  The other ornaments on it are those that my husband and I collect from places that we travel to.  They're the 24 kt gold laser cut and etched shiny golden ornaments that depict scenes of the places we've travelled to, such as Yellowstone, Jackson Hole, the Camp Lakewood Trout Lodge that we go to every summer, Hannibal Missouri from when we went w/my ex-sister-in-law & her new husband, and various states we've visited, along w/many more.  Our newest acquisition is one from Hermann, Missouri's Oktoberfest, where we went his past weekend.  And I stick a few berry picks in the top along w/some butterflies.  I just redid the ornaments today with the help of my oldest (I had to listen to her, 'are you serious, mother?' throughout it, but she did it, none-the-less, lol), and the lights are white now, as you can see in the pic.  I might tweek it a bit here and there still, haven't decided.  So right now, I'm propped up on my bed, with my golden retriever laying across  my feet, my rat terrier curled up under the blanket next to me, the window open w/a cool breeze blowing through, my pretty tree lit, and 'It's a Wonderful Life' on the boob-tube, lol...ya think there's meds for this condition? lol  My husband snickers at me for my craziness and my kids roll their eyes, lol but I don't care...they'd miss it if I didn't do it this way.

Oh, oh, forgot to tell everyone, I picked up a new tree for my kitchen the other day...I'm trying to remember where I bought it, I think it was Garden Ridge, anyhoo, it's PINK, I have gold, silver, green, even teal blue, but I hadn't picked up a pink one yet, so I did.  Didn't pay much for it, something like 8 bucks, it's about 2 feet tall.  I plan to decorate it with mini-cupcakes that I make, along w/ribbon candy ornaments (made from ribbon, I'll take pics of those and show-and-tell in a later post, but they're similar to the ones in this pic)...I just can't wait!!!  My kitchen boasts a large lithograph of Santa working in his kitchen making cookies and soup with the elves, he's wearing an apron, lol.  I keep this picture up all year, as well, it's just too cute not to.  I also picked up a tall 'skinny' tree at another thrift store that I frequent, Value Village, it's HUGE...it took over the old Big Lots store and it uses the entire floor space for it's goodies, that's how big it is.  They had the tree and it was only priced at $6.06 (yeah, they're one of those that puts a weird ending price on their tags, dunno why they do that, they're not tax-exempt or anything).  I think I'll be putting this outside on my front porch, next to my front door with white lights and red plastic balls...will show-and-tell when it all comes together.

I also found a new ornament I want to make...add it to my list, of course, lol.  Took this pic at Kohl's.  It's suppose to be a vintage postcard, it's been sprinkled with clear 'snow' glitter.  I have quite a few old Christmas cards that people have given me through the years and they would be perfect to turn into this.  I already have a large postcard stamp to look like the vintage back, w/a place for a stamp, etc.  Then the stamper w/writing and postmarks, all of which I have...trim them with decorative scissors, spray with spray glue and sprinkle...add an embellishment at the bottom, maybe a little plastic crystal, or a couple of beads, etc. and BOOM! DONE!!  wouldn't these be adorable and very economical gifts?  I think that's what I'm-a gonna do! and of course, it's been added to my very long list of 'to-dos' lol

A couple of my recent junkin' finds

The hubs and I went to the Pevely Fleamarket on Sunday...we didn't get out and about until lunchtime, so we knew there wouldn't be many sellers left, and we were right, lol, there were only a handful of sellers other than the 'regulars'...ya'll know the type, they rent a spot at the flea market and set up canapies and such and just tarp it closed when the flea maret's over and it's all ready to go for the next weekend...you NEVER find anything worth having at those sellers, (in our experience) so we skipped over them.  They 2 large buildings that we strolled through, and the last one had this little iron ice cream chair stuck in a dusty old corner...I squealed and the hubs thought I'd fallen or something, lol.  He dug it out for me and the tag said $5.00!  I squealed again...he just said, 'I take it that that means you want it,' lol and took it to the front to pay for it.  (btw, those aren't holes in the back, it's just the limbs from that loathesome barberry bush sticking thru them, ughhh, I HATE that bush!)  It's a very sturdy and solid chair...can't decide if I want to put it down in garden or what...hmmmmm.  got any ideas for me???

Then today I was out running errands all over town and stopped in at the local Goodwill.  I picked up a few things, a couple of brand new Target donated Kindle covers for when I get mine, one for 99 cents and the other for $2.99.  Then I found these beauts...and for a SONG too.  They're the vintage enamelware refrigerator boxes...2 reg. sized white boxes, w/lil handles on top w/blue edges, aren't they adorable?  they were only $2 EACH!!!  WOWzers for realz!  If you notice in the pic, they're sitting in a larger box...and THAT, my dear folks, is a vintage enamelware refrigerator drawer box!  It's large, white w/black edge and black handle, very hard to find...and I only paid 6 BUCKS for it!!!

My next find I didn't take a pic of, but I stopped at one of my favorite junk shops, Pops, where they know me by name.  He knows some of the things that I like and puts them back for me until I come in next, and he and his helpers especially know my affinity toward old photo slides.  I went in to find a glass stopper for a vintage wine decanter (he has a bin full of glass stoppers and I just KNEW he'd have what I needed...he did, lol, and for only a buck and a half).  And of course, as always, I ask as I come in, 'hey there...how's everyone? great...great...oh yeah, I'm fine, tired of this wind.  Say, did ya'll get any new photo slides in?'  and, the answer was, 'hmmm, I think there's a box in the back, I don't know why they're back there...let me call him and ask' and as she dialed, I said, 'hopefully they're there for ME!' smiling...she got off the phone and said, 'yep, he stashed'em back there for you, let me get'em.'  When she came out she had 2 boxes of vintage aluminum slide cases (not trays) full of slides.  It was like Christmas for me, lol...there were about 200ish vintage slides and she only charged me $16 for them ALL!  YAYS!  A couple of months ago I stopped in and he'd put back close to 600 or so slides for me and only charged me $30 for them all, and they were of China in the 50's and 60's...WONderful, with a few vintage Christmas slides thrown in.  We just have the best time going through them all and looking at them in slide viewers and occassionally set up the projector, put a white sheet across the big screen tv, and look at them that way...have you ever done that?  just take someone else's vacation with them from years past with vintage photo slides?  I love doing that.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Win a copy of 'Holiday' with Matthew Mead over at Thrifty Decor Chick!

One of the Thrifty Decor Chick's projects has been chosen to be in Matthew Mead's new Christmas decorating, crafting books, 'Holiday with Matthew Mead!' HOW exciting!!! and she has an extra copy up for grabs in a giveaway...just head over to her post and let her know that you'd like to win it, for your entry...you can get extra entries, too, if you want to get more chances to win it. It looks like it's going to be a fanTABulous new Holiday decorating book! GOTTA have it, one way or another!

I started my musical bird Christmas ornaments today

I went to a little thrift shop today, I hadn't been to it in several months (shame on me, 'cause they're very inexpensive).  And they had alot of sheet music books.  So I went through them and picked the ones that the music lines were close enough together, tossed out the 'school class' band books (for 6th grade trumpet, etc), and tossed out the ones that were stark white (there's no fun in looking 'new'...blah), and I finally ended up with the ones in the pic...I spent $4.50 on all these books and there's aLOT of pages in a few of those books, and I've already started chopping them up, lol.

I put my pattern on the pages and started tracing them, then cut them out.  I plan to glue them on tinted cardstock (so there's color on the back) and will embellish accordingly.  I'm off to a great start...it'll take a few days for me to get some done, I tend to be all over the place at the same time, lately...or at least that's how I feel sometimes, lol.  But, alas, a train trip and wine tasting is in my near future (Saturday, yum), can't wait, rain or not, I'm GOin!

don't ya think my birdie ornaments are gonna look just like the $5.99 ones at JCPenneys????  actually, they're gonna look even BETTER, cuz it's ME that's making them, lol...I'll post pics of the finished products in a few days.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Lavender Cove has gone 'Etsy'

Yes, Lavender Cove now has an Etsy store...although, there's nothing in it for sale at the moment, lol.  Once it does, you'll be the first to know, I promise.  I plan to sell my homemade one-of-a-kinds, as well as quite a few antique and vintage rummage finds.  Where am I gonna find the time?  this crosses my mind many times a day.  With Lavender Cove's 'sister' blog, Thrifty and Frugal, getting more and more popular, it requires that I maintain it more and more frequently, then I have medical appointments on M,W,F that I don't get home from until 2-4 pm, plus my kids' extra-curricular activities several evenings per week...BUT, alas, this is my plan.  The upside of Etsy is that items aren't auctioned, they're listed for up to 4 months, and are sold (or not, lol)...so that helps a bit, maybe, or at least, we'll see, lol. Anyhoo, the above pic is Lavender Cove's Etsy Store banner...what'a'ya think? I like it, too!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

I've found the bird templates I plan to use

As you all know, I (and thousands of others), LOVE The Graphics Fairy's images that she posts for FREE use...they're generally vintage or antique, copyright free images, from vintage/antique post cards, cards, pamphlets, books, score sheets, music and various other things.  Well, I went over to The Graphics Fairy's blog and scrolled through her Birds section (where there's over 100 images of birds alone to download) and found a few that I think will work for the ornaments that I told ya'll about here.  I enlarged them by a few pixels on my computer and printed them on regular paper.  I have quite a bit of scrapbooking cardstock to choose from and plan to use some that will have a solid color on the back (some will be pink, some buttercream).  I'll cut them out to use as templates on vintage sheet music and the cardstock, cut those out, and spray glue them to the cardstock, then decorate to my heart's content.  Here's the bird images that I've chosen for this project...if you want to give it a go, as well, head over to her birds tab and download the images to your 'puter to print out...if you decide to download them, give her a lil 'thank you' by 'following' her blog, she works so hard on the images she provides for us.  What'a ya think? you think these images would make for good bird ornaments like the ones in the pic on my post? NOTE: DO NOT PRINT THE BIRDS FROM THIS PAGE...FIRST AND FOREMOST, THEY ARE NOT MY IMAGES TO GIVE...AND SECOND, THEY WON'T TURN OUT RIGHT, WHEN YOU INCREASE THE PIXELS, THEY WILL BE DISTORTED.  MAKE SURE TO GET THEM FROM THE SOURCE, The Graphics Fairy SO THAT THE DOWNLOAD AND PRINTING WILL BE SUCCESSFUL!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Look at the pretty faux goodies I've just made...

These are some of my recent faux goodies that I've made.  They are all lightly scented with pumpkin spice essential oils and smell wonderful.  The smell is long lasting, as well, so the rooms smell wonderful without burning candles.  Don't they look yummy?  the Eiffel Tower bowl was adorable, I thought, and perfect for a spray-foam mounded cupcake.  you can't see it, but there's a pink mirrored ballerina at the top next to the puffy heart and Eiffel Tower pick.  The Santa cake is just a foam cube from Dollar Tree that 'iced' and decorated...I was lucky enough to find a pkg of vintage flocked Santas at a thrifty store for 50 cents.  The cups of faux cocoa are just that...spray foam inside of tea cups, with faux whipped cream and faux marshmallows and choco chips on top.  A few of the cups are for everyday, but about 6 of them are for Christmas, including a vintage inspired Santa head mug..I'll need to get a pic of that up for ya'll, it's aDORable!  The little round cakes w/a berry on top are just the foam rounds from Dollar Tree that I 'iced.'  And finally, that large faux cupcake is actually a plastic bowl or planter or something that I got on clearance for 50 cents at Big Logs (I picked up a few pink and a few blue, as well).  This was my first one to decorate, though.  I put a 25 cent porcelain bunny on top w/a plastic tiara from Dollar Tree and lots and lots of flowers.  I 'iced' it in swirls for a poofy effect, I think it came out okay, don't you?  of course, all of the items are sprinkled lightly with fairy dust (I LOOOOOOOOOOVE fairy dust, lol), to give a little twinkle and feel of sparkly romance.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

A 'must have' right now: Martha's pumpkin carving kit

For several years, my daughters and I have rustled around the house collecting this and that, or anything that we could use to make interesting carvings, holes, and such on our pumpkins...we have a tendancy to use a my metal pastry tubes to poke holes, but we often come out with scars from being cut, lol NOT safe...I've tried everything from taping them at the end to using plastic cap covers to keep the ends from cutting us, to no avail, as the metal is thin and cuts right through whatever I use.  BUT, I've been eyeing a kit from Martha's kitchen and fall line for a couple of years now, ever since she put it together.  I've looked all around this year, and everyone says it's 'out of stock,' online and instore, yet I just saw her carving pumpkins with Johnny Knoxville on her new Hallmark show today, they were using the tools, AND she gave him a set...ughhh, no wonder they aren't in stock, lol.  But, alas, I will continue to search...it looks a bit pricey, but it'll be an investment for future year's use, as well, and to make the carving a bit easier on mine and my youngster's hands.  The scoop looks a bit cheesey, I think sturdy ice cream scoops work better, or heavy metal cooking spoons.  So ar, I've searched Macy's and Amazon...haven't tried eBay yet....KMart use to carry Martha's junk, I mean, products, but don't anymore...I forget who picked her line up, is it Target? hmmm, dunno, but I WILL prevail!

I plan to make these 2 aDORable Christmas ornaments!

I was at JCPenney today and was looking at their Christmas section, which is always quite small, ughh...anyhoo, I saw these two adorable ornaments on a tree that I thought I'm just gonna HAVE to make...and they look like they're going to be super simple.  A small box, diorama-type ornament which is open (doesn't have a window over it), w/lots of faux snow, with a vintage scene, which many can now be found on Christmas cards at the store, downloaded for free at places like the Graphics Fairy, and such.  And then the 2nd ornament is a thin posterboard bird, trimmed in vintage looking tinsel roping, and covered in vintage-look sheet music, which, again, is so easy to find nowadays, thanks to scrapbooking sections in stores, OR just use vintage music that you might have on hand or look for at the thrift shop...and it's decorated with the simplest and cheapes craft item, pipe cleaners.  And they were charging 5.99 and 7.99 for these ornaments! wowzers.  Don't these just look adorable and so simple to make?  I'm gonna...I'll post pics when I finally get around to doin' it, lol...I'll add it to The 'LIST'

Monday, October 11, 2010

THIS is what 8 lbs of pears gets you, lol

So, we have an elderly couple for neighbors, that live across the fence behind our backyard that have a couple of pear trees.  Last Sunday, I'd stopped by for a visit and they sent about 10 lbs of pears home with me.  What were we EVER going to do with that many pears?  We ate some....then a few more, but then everyone was tired of eating them.  So my bestie says, 'make some pear butter...it's easy, just peel & core them, and toss'em in the crockpot w/a few light spices and 1/4 cup of water and cook overnight...they'll be ready to can the next morning.'  So, I did, and she was wrong, lol...they cooked in the crock for about 20 hours before they cooked down to a consistency that could be made into butter (just some quick stirring), but I fudged...I put too much water in it, about 1 1/2 c, plus the juice in the pears boiled out and then I was stuck w/aLOT of juice that i had to sieve off, which was time consuming as hell...but here's the result.  8 lbs of pears processed down 6 half-pint jars, lol...that's it.  So, tomorrow on the way home, I shall take a jar to the nice neighbors that gave me the pears........and see if they'll give me some more, lol.  And I couldn't resist making the little tags...I stamped a small bee on it in coffee colored ink, then wrote the name across it w/'made w/Splenda' at the bottom, and my name & date on the back, and tied them on the rings...aren't they adorable?!
note: if you're interested my crockpot recipe for pear butter made with splenda, just give me a holler by leaving a comment or clicking the 'contact me' tab.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Printed picture on a vintage book page

so, the next time you're at a yard sale or thrift shop and you can find a larger vintage book for 50 cents or so, you should grab it and put some of those pages to use.  I'm a book fiend, seriously...I think there's support groups for people like me.  And being such, it took me quite a long time to finally say, 'ok, I can use some of these pages for crafts'  and the first time I actually cut into the book and page, I almost cried.  It was almost as if I was cutting a friend...destroying them to where they would be no more.  I tried this and that w/the book, tags, bookmarks and such...and then I stumbled across this lil craft.  I've not made any yet, but I plan to...I just can't decide which picture to use yet, lol.  I do know, that I'll use pictures from The Graphics Fairy...who shares copyright free vintage clips for free download for one and all to use as they wish.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

I posted some new stuff under the Crafty Ideas tab

It's Fall and it has me in the decorating mood, so I posted some ideas and pics under the Crafty Ideas tab...here's a pic to give you a little idea about what it's about...I hope you enjoy! (don't you just LOVE the little candle in the basket?! a-DOR-able!)

I've made some changes...can you tell?

Although I've been blogging for almost 2 years now, I'm still learning LOTs about what I can do, add, etc...how I can do this or that, make it look or do this or that...it's exciting when I finally figure something out, lol, like Feedburner...ugh.  I LOVE it now, but I had to just figure it out, is all...so that's exactly what I did, I just started clicking around on it, it won't hurt anything, don't be afraid, seriously...the worst that will happen is that it won't do what you thought it was gonna do and you'll just go back and 'undo' it.  It took me a bit, but I gotter'done!  I worked it out on my other blog first, Thrifty and Frugal, then once I finally noticed that it had worked (through various trial and error, lol), I decided to do it to Lavender Cove.  As you can see, at the right, you can now subscribe to this blog, so whenever I make a post (although I don't do it on this blog as often as I want to), it'll go straight to your email, so you'll know I've made a post, what it is, and an idea about what it's about so you can click on it to read the rest.  Also, I finally engineered a 'button' for Lavender Cove, so that anyone of you that have your own blog or site, can grab my html code and put it on your blog (as I've done for some of yours).  change is crazy, but exciting, don't ya think?  I think THIS change for THIS blog made it much better and prettier (don't worry, the background will change all the time, it does on the other blog too, it's my 'personality' shining through, lol).

I've begun to decorate for FALL...wanna see?

This is the little arrangement that I've put on my front porch...the pumpkin was from Dollar Tree, for of course, just a buck.  Then I took a black Sharpie and put the H and little vine design on it.  I got the idea from Hobbie Lobby, as I posted here a few weeks ago.  The leaves I picked up at Dollar Tree, also.  They had packs of about 20 crepe leaves (a different color in each pack) and the they were attached to floral wire so that they could be manipulated and such...those were a GREAT find!  The silver urn or wine bucket, whatever whoever wants to call it, came from the Salvation Army for $3.69 (cool, huh?!).  First, I'd done the arrangement w/out the urn and leaves and my bestie said, 'you're gonna put leaves around it, right?' and of course I was going to, but it wasn't quite October yet, I'd only just begun decorating for fall.  So I finally got around to dragging the leaves out, and then I had an 'ah ha' moment when I looked over to a bar stool next to the back door where I had this poor, lonely urn, just sitting, crying out for me to do something with it.  So...I did.  Originally, I had the pumpkin sitting on top of a short dumpy terra cotta pot...it's foam, so I took skewers and put them up the bottom of the punkin and into the foam in the pot...then when I rearranged it to add the urn, all I did was drop the terra cotta pot inside so it adds some more weight to keep from blowying away, just in case.  Then I stuffed the leaves in and the the floral wire stems worked perfectly to poke into the foam in the pot.  The other items on the wicker and iron bistro table (a $20 find at a Goodwill store about 4 yrs ago) that sits next to the front door, are there throughout the year, w/the exception of the flowers behind the pumpkin, as I add those depending on the season (the stars were 98 cents eact at GW last year, they had stands on them and I bent those off so I could use them as picks, they were a last thought to the arrangement, but I think it worked out well).

I've not put any fall wreathes out yet, but that will happen within the week, probably, because Fall is in full swing, leaves everywhere, chilly days to downright cold night, and fruit picking...speaking of which, I have an elderly couple as neighbors along our back fence that gave me 2 huge bags of pears, yummmmm. I don't have time to make perserves or anything, so I've been thinking of making smaller pear cobblers and freezing them to use at gatherings for Thanksgiving and Christmas...do cobblers freeze and re-heat well? hmmm, dunno, let me know if any of ya'll have done this, will ya?
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