Saturday, December 16, 2017

Christmas Parcels





Every year, I search Pinterest for wrapping ideas. I like to try something different each year. I've been tempted to repeat an idea (for example, these tags) but every year I end up with some new inspiration. 

This year, while searching on Pinterest, I came across this pin.

source


Since we have plenty of brown paper, quite a bit of twine, and a very large collection of old postage stamps, this seemed like just the right theme for this year. 



Each vintage parcel is tied up with twine and a stamp or two in the corner. For the larger packages I added a vintage "Parcel Post" label for the tag. 



And for the smaller packages, I just wrote the recipient's name right on the paper.




All the parcels look so cute in the crate, don't they?!


Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Decorating for Christmas

I love the Christmas season! I get excited when it rolls around each year. 


If you've read my blog for very long, you'll know that I love just about anything vintage. Christmas is my favorite time to use vintage decor. 


My trio of handmade snow globes pairs well with two Sugared Birch candles from the Hearth and Hand With Magnolia collection at Target. FYI: They smell amazing! I was content with the just taller one but then when I went to Target the other day the shorter one hopped into my basket and I let it stay. :)



The pillow I purchased at Marshalls last year, is a nice pop of color on my white bedding. This pillow is a favorite of Pinky's. I catch her all the time rubbing it, sleeping next to it, or just sitting there beside it. I don't know what it is that attracts her. Silly kitty!



The top shelf of my cart holds a few (of my many) copies of A Christmas Carol and a  little vintage tree.



On the bottom shelf of the cart  is one of my vintage cameras and a Bess Streeter Aldrich Christmas book I found at an antique store a year or so ago.



On the shelf above my chair I have a few pieces of a new metal nativity I bought in Lancaster this past October. The whole set includes a star, a couple wisemen, a shepherd, another sheep, a cow, and a donkey. I didn't have room to put the whole set out this year but whenever I have my own home to decorate, I'll use all the pieces. 





My dresser is where I put my small tree. (More on that in another post coming soon.) Next to it, I have a peppermint candle and a jarful of red ornaments that were my great-aunt Lynn's.



I am again using the old crate that I found up in the attic of the new house when we moved. It's a perfect place to put Christmas packages waiting to be handed out on Christmas day. 



Wednesday, December 6, 2017

My Poppop Bird

My grandfather passed away in 2011. Several years ago, my grandmother gave my dad a pajama set that had been Poppop's, and in turn Dad gave the shirt to me to use as a bed jacket. It was always big so I didn't wear it much. I kept it for the sentimental value. Last year, I dug it out and decided to make something out of it.

I found a pattern for a bird that was simple to make.



Last year he stayed out all winter and this year he's back in his old spot again. I still have plenty of fabric left so a few more Poppop birds might show up at some point. 

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Greek Gyros

I don't know about you, but I seem to see gyros everywhere these days! Pinterest, food blogs, even Arby's has one on their menu.

I enjoy trying new foods so I was interested in trying this traditional Greek dish.

I took inspiration from three or four different recipes to create my own: what spices to use from one place, cooking method in another, ratio of lamb to beef at a different place, the tzatziki sauce from yet a different source.


Greek Gyros


Ingredients:
1/2 onion
1 pound lamb
1 pound beef
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon rosemary
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt


Directions:
Place the onion in a food processor, and process until finely chopped. Scoop the onions onto the center of a towel, gather up the ends of the towel, and squeeze out the liquid from the onions. 

Place the onions back into the food processor along with the lamb and beef. Season with the garlic, oregano, cumin, rosemary, thyme, black pepper, and salt. Pulse until mixture is pasty. Cover, and refrigerate 1 to 2 hours to allow the flavors to blend.

Pat meat mixture into an ungreased 9-in. x 5-in. loaf pan. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 60-70 minutes or until no pink remains and a thermometer reads 160°. Cool completely on a wire rack. Slice thinly. 

Serve on pita with lettuce, tomato, feta, black olives, and tzatziki sauce (recipe below). 

***************************************

Tzatziki Sauce

Mix together:
1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeds removed, and cut into small chunks
1/2 cups plain Greek yogurt
1 small clove garlic, pressed
4 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons dill


We'll definitely be having gyros again!

Monday, July 31, 2017

DIY Pallet Art




In this post I hinted at a project I had in the works. This past winter I found a beautiful wooden photograph pallet at HomeGoods (you can see it in the 2nd and 3rd pictures in this post). I kept it up all winter long but since it was a photograph of winter berries I had to take it down when spring arrived. I have to admit I was a little sad and my wall looked so bare without it. I tried hanging a frame in that spot but it didn't feel quite right after having that beautiful rustic pallet on the wall all winter 

I had seen several tutorials on pinterest for diy pallet art using photographs, so when Shutterfly offered a deal on 16X20 prints, I decided to try my hand at making one. I searched through my digital photo albums and chose a photograph that would work for spring/summer/fall. That way I had something nice to hang all year round! 

It took me a couple of evenings from start to finish (after a certain point it needed to dry for 24 hours before I preceded to the next step) but it was actually a very easy project to create. 



You will need:
photograph on nice quality photo paper
wooden pallet or planks of wood the same size as your photograph
x-acto knife or paper cutter
Modge Podge
paint brush
sandpaper



Align the photo on the wooden pallet. 



Indent the photo where there is a gap between the planks.



Using an x-acto knife or cutter, slice the picture using the marks you made earlier as a guide. 


I made my cuts slightly jagged to give a more rustic look. 



When I was planning this project I found several different options of what to use to adhere the photograph to the pallet. I went with Mod Podge since that seemed to be what was recommended the most. 



Generously apply a coat of Mod Podge to the wood. 



Apply a thick layer of Mod Podge to the back of the picture. 



Align each piece of the picture to the wood and apply another coat of Mod Podge to the top of the photograph. 



Make sure the Mod Podge is evenly spread out and the brush strokes are neat. Once it dries, it will be clear but you can still see the brush strokes at certain angles. 



Let it dry for at least 24 hours.  



Using a coarse sandpaper, sand off the edges of the pallet for a rustic feel and to smooth out any Mod Podge thickness. 



Sand off as much or as little as desired. Take advantage of the knots and uniqueness of the wood by sanding a little more in those spots. 



Finish it off by attaching a picture hanger to the back. 



I'm very happy with the way it turned out! 

Monday, June 5, 2017

Litographs

I am a big fan of the classics. Charles Dickens, Jane Austen, the Bronte sisters, George Eliot. I've found that I enjoy listening to audio books in my car on my drive to work and in this way I've completed three Dickens books this year and I'm on my fourth. It's something I look forward to when I get in my car! 

About a year or so ago, I discovered a website called Litographs that takes the words of classic books and turns them into t-shirts, scarves, tote bags, and more. 

I purchased one of the Emma t-shirts last year. I love that it had the comfort of a t-shirt but looks a lot cuter than a plain tee. In the cooler weather I like to pair it with a sweater. 





This winter I splurged and bought a Sense and Sensibility tote bag. I've been using it as my work bag and I've received so many compliments.



“I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of any thing than of a book! When I have a house of my own, I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library.”  
― Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice 

***This is not a sponsored post. All thoughts are my own. 

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Spring Word Art

 I love spring. After the cold of winter I'm always ready to see spring arrive with the warm weather and buds on the trees. At the first hint of that spring air, I'm itching to put away the chunky throws and vanilla candles and pull out the bowl of eggs, flowers, and brighter colors.

This year, I wanted to add some spring to the old window frame that hangs over my dresser. I created 6 prints using a PicMonkey floral border in different colors and scriptures. I printed them on cardstock and attached them to the wall with tape so that they will come down easily when the time comes.