Tuesday, December 24, 2013

a simple phrase

And so I'm offering this simple phrase,
To kids from one to ninety-two,
Although its been said many times, many ways,
Merry Christmas to you....

Hoping you all can spend time with family and friends during this holiday season,

Monday, December 16, 2013

holiday project #6 - baker's twine and bottle brush trees

I think I've officially reached a record with my holiday projects this year!  Number 6 and I have one more to go that I think I'll even get done...

This one almost didn't happen.  I came across the idea for the mini snow globe ornaments on Pinterest (where else you ask?)... of course I immediately went to Etsy and found a seller for the little glass globes and bases but then I made the mistake of not ordering them right away and the next day, GONE!  I then spent a number of days searching and all of the sellers were in Hong Kong... with shipping times to match... and there's a reason for the phrase "slow boat to China".  Finally I found them on Etsy from this seller in California BUT I would need to order all three pieces separately but the cost was still quite reasonable at under $2.00 per globe.

I had tons of little bottle brush trees in my stash.  Green and white.  And you may notice that the tiny ones were still a bit too tall but a sharp pair of scissors solved that problem.

The little brass tops... originally I thought about spray painting them bronze like the original Pinterest ones but thought these little guys would be a pain in the neck to spray paint.

The little brass bottoms.

The cute little globes... and here you can see how the bottoms fit on.

I still had snow or diamond dust from my snow globe jars from season's past.

And I did track down glue that was meant for glass and metal... very important since I have found that hot glue doesn't always work on glass items.

First I cut off the bases of the trees to make them the right height... and you might notice that a cute little spun cotton mushroom worked it's way into the lineup of twelve.  For THIS step I did use hot glue and the trees are still sticking to their bases as we "speak".

I used a small 1/8 teaspoon and put two scoops (or 1/4 teaspoon) of snow in each globe...

Then came the hard part.  Putting a small amount of the glass/metal glue around the brass base and flipping it upside down, inserting it into the glass globe and holding it for a good 30 to 45 seconds while the glue did it's magic.  I did manage to adhere my fingers to quite a few of the bases since the glue worked it's way through the little metal filigree edges, fortunately this glue isn't quite as strong as super glue and I could get them off... but I think each and every snow globe carries my thumb print on the bottom!

I let them cure overnight so that the glue was very, very dry/cured.

Then the hardest part of all.  Gluing the little top onto the glass... in the center... without glue dripping down the sides... After the first one kept sliding down I mastered the right ratio of glue drops to keep it in place without running and slipping as well as using tweezers to place the little metal top.  Then I left them totally ALONE until the glue completely dried.

If you can find the globes with these little things on top already, I would buy those since this WAS the hardest part...

Now I was going to add really tiny little jingle bells to the tops but realized my baker's twine didn't fit through the jingle bells... so that was out but the red and aqua baker's twine was still in.  And just barely in...those little tops are meant for a jump ring so the baker's twine barely made it through the opening.

And here they are... not a baker's dozen, but a real dozen.  I think I may even cut up this egg carton for the gift giving part and wrap each one in an 'cup' with cellophane and more twine... what do you think?

And then I couldn't resist pulling my aqua ceramic egg tray out of the fridge for a photo shoot....

And show them off on the tree...

One of each...

Of course...

I'm pretty happy with the outcome of these little guys.  Now I just need to decide on the lucky 11 recipients because I'll be keeping one for myself!

I think I may be looking around for what else I can fit in these mini globes... little reindeer?  the jingle bells I couldn't use... more mushrooms? And have a second edition next year.

Of another, even dozen.

Monday, December 9, 2013

holiday project #5 - my very own idea, matchbox advent calendar

I'm not sure when this idea popped into my  head....

Perhaps a few weeks back when I came across a box of twelve vintage (would they be anything else?) match boxes on etsy.  They look pretty familiar...

Even the little box they came in identifying them as "noel matches"... just what every home needed back in the 60's?

Now you can see why they looked familiar!  I had found a box of these a number of years back and added a couple more here and there over the years to total 15.  Mine were all gold boxes and the new find, a mix of gold, red and green... the colors of the season are a fun addition.

I had an idea of what I wanted to do... and a large metal tray from ikea would work to start the project.

25 match boxes and a metal tray... hmmm.

Some aqua labels, which just happened to be the right size, and a black sharpie.

Can you see where I'm going with this?

Although I added the circle label in each box I didn't want to compromise my little vintage beauties further and opted for "mighty magnets" to hold the boxes in place.  The little magnets are super strong!

But wait... we're getting a bit ahead of ourselves.

Today (well last Saturday when I did this) is only the 7th of December!

I'm not sure if the little angels or the Santa faces are my favorites...
And in future years, perhaps there will be a little one or two around to help open a few of these boxes with maybe a little something inside?

And all those matches?  Well I could pile them back in those little boxes or better yet..

We'll use them to light some holiday candles!

linking up to 

Saturday, December 7, 2013

meeting THE pioneer woman

This  past Thursday I left work early and headed down to Seattle.  The skies were blue but the weather here has been much colder than our average... fortunately no snow since I had a fun day planned.

I left work with the intention of having extra time before I needed to be any where so I could make a couple of planned side trips.  The first involved an antique mall near my daughter's new house.  It did not disappoint... it was HUGE!  In fact I think you could get lost in there never to be seen again.  I found a cute little gift for my mom and the above bottle brush tree for myself, of course!  I've never seen a vintage bottle brush tree covered with vintage beaded garland, ornaments, presents and of course it was flocked too!

Then it was off to my favorite market to get pico de gallo and I came across these whole wheat sugar cookies... and we all know the whole wheat counteracts the butter, right?  And yes, they are were delicious.

And my next stop?  Hobby Lobby!  Yep, I didn't know we had one near by but it turns out there are a couple in the Seattle area and this one in particular is a few minutes from my daughter's house.   This was important since I was picking my son in law up there to head to downtown Seattle and meet up with my daughter.  And why you ask?

Well this lady was in town and we were going to meet her!

Ree Drummond, aka the Pioneer Woman is on a book tour for her lastest cookbook and she was coming to Seattle!

Traffic was a nightmare, is there any other kind in Seattle on a Thursday at 5:00?

But we got there with time to spare... my daughter, Krysta and her husband Sten were with me.

And then it was showtime!  The Pioneer Woman talked for a bit and shared photos and stories.  She is as funny in person as her show on the Food Network.

Then it was time to line up for the actual book signing... this part didn't go so well.  Not sure if it was the venue and it's pew style seating or us crazy fans but it was utter chaos.  Folks, like us, that had prepurchased their books at the sponsors stores had "priority tickets" but that didn't seem to phase the crowd.  They even made us all sit back down at one point only to have the same stampede happen all over again... sigh.

At one point my son in law looked up, he didn't wait in line, and the look on his face was priceless when he saw that we hadn't moved AT ALL... after a good 45 minutes no less.

But finally the line was moving and we were getting close to the front...

And then, it was our turn!  Of course I couldn't think of anything witty... or even not witty to say!

By now it was pushing 9:00 and we hadn't eaten dinner so we headed a couple of blocks over to The Cheesecake Factory for burgers and fries.

And then it was a cold and lonely drive home...

But well worth it since I have this, and my memories, to remember the evening by...

And it's still cold, just 14.2 degrees (Fahrenheit) at 7:00 pm, but at least the wind has stopped blowing...