Saturday, November 27, 2010

Making a list and checking it twice...

I have been having a hard time getting into the holiday spirit...I think I was too hung up on Thanksgiving this year.  I hadn't started my list or really planned gifts to make or really even started thinking about those kinds of things.
This was the Christmas of the son was the president of his self-created llama club at school. 
We had a beautiful tree, this was 2004.  My son was 10, and he was so excited to follow our usual traditions.  He wrote a letter to Santa, he threw out the magic reindeer food (you can't really ignore the reindeer!) and of course he left food for Santa.
So today I did some light Christmas shopping and now I am sitting down to actually make a list of who gets what...and a list of what I will make in the next four weeks, yup, that is right, four weeks from today!
Wow, I better get busy!

Thanksgiving Thoughts

The view at the back door of my mom's house...
I didn't take any pictures except for these two above...this was our first Thanksgiving without Dad. 
That made it hard, hard for us all, but especially hard for Mom.  She asked her brother to offer prayer before we ate.  I was so relieved...not sure why but Uncle Jim praying was very comforting. 
Dad always prayed before our Thanksgiving meal.  I always wondered if this would be his last Thanksgiving...if we would ever hear him pray again.  This was 2009 and it was really his last time to pray before a Thanksgiving meal.
This was 2008, he was teaching Sunday school the weekend after Thanksgiving at the little church where he was buried.  I was happy to see him teach there...
Here he was in 2007, right after my great niece Laney was born.  There are five generations here...I am blessed to have my grandparents still, they are both in their 90s and live in an apartment.
Dad had cancer for 7 years and was given just months to live when he was diagnosed.  I always felt blessed that he outlived the statistics and lived 7 years more, the majority of them good years without pain, without a lot of medical intervention.
Now for the rest of the photos that were taken by my nephew Beau...actually I am just posting a few of them...he probably took a 100 photos total.  I have seen Beau's work before and he takes some amusing pics!  Here is a self portrait...
and a shot of Mom's living room...
and here we have a Best Buy commercial captured on TV.
a random shot into the kitchen...
my great niece Audrey who was a bit sickly and didn't feel well...
John (another nephew) on the couch and my son Sam watching TV...
and the planning stage of the Black Friday extravaganza.
The lovely hardwood floors
and Charlie snuggling Baby Audrey.
And what would Thanksgiving be without a football game...
All in all, it was a great Thanksgiving with family and wonderful food. 
Another first over with....

Friday, November 19, 2010

A few great finds

16 inch tall recycled glass vase $4 at JoAnn fabrics
Tiny little poinsettia in a self watering ornament container, $7 (it's a gift)
Vintage thrifted pink satin pillow with brown stitching and buttons, $1
Great patterns in this publication of knit simple...lots of easy animals to knit, including an owl!
Misplaced pig slippers are found (under a LARGE stack of fabric in my sewing room which is now clean!)...I am a bit under the weather today with a bad cold so I wore them most of the day...they go well with my pjs!
Nothing better than my pig slippers!

My new favorite spray paint color...

Here is the before picture...I was in Walmart looking for some sort of Caribbean blue/robins egg blue/ocean blue spray paint for a little basket I was going to put in my bathroom to hold my cosmetics.
This is what I came home with...not exactly what I went for, but I thought it might work.  Well yesterday I spray painted the little basket and realized this is the most beautiful color.  Now I would like to spray paint my entire house this same shade...Sesame Shimmer.
Hmmm, wonder how much that would cost...I think for now I will just settle on these two little baskets I got at the thrift store for 25 cents each.  They are really sturdy and solid, so should hold up to lots of use. Please disregard my spray table (AKA the trash can!) but hey, it works for me!
Here is the small one in the bathroom with my Mary Kay nested inside.
It looks perfect!
And the other basket looks great too!
I am thinking this might make a great gift basket...for Christmas for someone, not saying who!

How to make a terrarium

I know it is almost Thanksgiving, but this is a left over summer type project!
I made a terrarium today...I used to always have one, but haven't for years.  So when I cleaned out my pots this fall I saved some creeping jenny and a small fern shoot to use for the terrarium.  I found the gallon glass jug at Goodwill for 50 cents and thought it would be perfect.
First of all I put some gravel inside the jug, spreading it out evenly.  I used a knitting needle to do my spreading and arranging of the plants.
I added about 2 tablespoons of charcoal (I had some for a fish tank filter so I used it)...this helps somehow but really I can't remember, I just have always done this to my terrariums.  Then I added about an inch of potting soil.
and removed as much of the soil from my fern that I could by shaking it gently.  I did this so that I could fit it into the narrow opening of the jug.
Then I stuffed (yup, that is what has to happen here, sounds cruel, but the plants never seem to mind) the plant into the opening and drop it into the bottom.
Putting the creeping jenny in was easier because I had it rooting in water for a few weeks, so there was no dirt to contend with.
I added another two inches of soil and used my knitting needle to tamp down the soil around the plant roots.
Now, use a spray bottle to spray the inside of the glass to remove the dirt from the sides of the jug. Spray enough so the water runs down and washes the dirt down the sides of the jug.
I added a few stones for decoration and
that is it!
Here it is a few hours later after the humidity has dissipated a bit.
Within a few weeks it will look all lush and tropical in there (I hope), because I am thinking it would make a great Christmas present!
Now I can have a bit of summer all winter long in here...

Black Friday Etsy Deals at Woolen Wonders by Ellen

Here are a few samplings of what I have in my etsy shop and since it is coming up on the biggest shopping day of the year, I am offering 10% off every item from now through December 1st!
So if you like this....
or this....
or this....
well you get the idea! 
Everything is 10% off...from now through December 1st...just type in 10% off under comments!
And the great thing is that I am adding new things every day!
So, I hope to see you there!
Happy Shopping!!
And remember I am always happy to create custom orders for you!