Thursday, September 30, 2010

A Sad Day. . .

. . . for our family today. My father-in-law passed away suddenly this morning. He had been in declining health for about the past year, but had been somewhat stable for a while. Then this morning, while relaxing in his favorite recliner in his living room, he suddenly lost consciousness and despite all efforts from family members, paramedics and hospital emergency room doctors, he did not make it.

My husband called me at work this morning just hysterical with grief. So I left work and raced to the hospital, but unfortunately, he had already passed before we made it there. They let us go in and see him and it literally broke my heart to watch my husband tell his Daddy good-bye. And even though that was one of the hardest things I've ever had to endure, I was really glad that he got that chance to see his Daddy and tell him how much he loves him and will miss him.

Funeral arrangements are incomplete at this time as they are waiting on some out of town family members to get here before finalizing any plans. Please keep our family in your thoughts and prayers. We are gonna need them during the next few days.

In light of what has happened today, hubby and I have decided not to do the craft show on Saturday. There is just too much going on right now and besides, we weren't completely finished making everything we wanted to take anyway. So all in all, it's not a bad thing. We want to be really prepared for our first show and not feel so rushed trying to complete all our projects.

My father-in-law was an ornery old coot who always told it like it was whether you wanted to hear it or not. You always knew where you stood with him and I had great respect for him. We should all strive to live more like he did. Although he didn't have much education (he was forced to quit school in the first grade to help out on the family farm), he knew right from wrong and he always tried to live life right. He was a hard worker and expected everybody else to be the same way. The stories he could tell! He would have me laughing like crazy every time we visited him. Although he will be greatly missed, we take comfort in knowing that he is no longer in pain and is reunited in Heaven with the love of his life, Gaynell. I'm sure they are having the time of their lives catching up on the last nine years right now!

Rest in peace, Poppaw Bowling. We love you!

Until next time. . .

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Busy, busy, busy. . .

Hey everyone! Sorry to be gone so long. It's been a crazy busy week here! Hubs and I are doing our very first craft fair on October 2 and we have both been crafting like mad trying to get ready for it. It is being held at a community center in a small community near where we live. I thought it might be a good one to get our feet wet because we have both been talking about doing one of these for quite a while but just haven't taken the plunge yet. The spaces rent for only $5 each so if we don't sell anything, we won't really be out all that much. I spoke to the lady in charge of it last night and she told me so far they have 15 vendors signed up! I was thinking like maybe 5 or 6! So now I'm really nervous! But we will never know till we try, right??

I have been busy making fabric pumpkins, pin cushions, Christmas tucks and ornies, salt dough ornies, game boards and signs, and faux caramel apples to sell. Hubby has been keeping the saw hot making wagon wheels, outhouse toilet paper holders, little storage crates and other stuff. Here's a few pics of some of things we've been busy creating:

Y'all keep your fingers, toes, arms, legs, and eyes crossed for us. This is so exciting but scary too! I'll be sure to let you know how it turns out.

Til next time. . .

Monday, September 13, 2010

And the winners are. . .

Yes, you read that right ~ I said WINNERS!!! I reached my goal of 250 followers so I have put together another goody package! Here's what the second winner will receive:

~ a black and purple Halloween rag garland. The picture doesn't show it, but the purple fabric has little bats on it. Too cute! This one doesn't measure as long as the one in the "first place" package. Not sure why cause I bought the same amount of fabric. But I held it up to my fireplace mantel and it was long enough to go all the way across. So I hope it works for the winner.
~ one of my faux caramel apples
~ a box of Candleberry Tarts in Cinnamon Broomstick flavor. I promise that when you melt these babies, your whole house will smell like cinnamon. It's awesome!
~ a set of my homemade salt dough ornies. This set includes leaves, candy corn, sunflower, stars, moons, and pumpkins. These are handmade, painted, and wax dipped by me!

There will also be a couple of extra goodies thrown in cause that's just how I roll!
Here's a pic of the "runner up" package:

And just in case you've forgotten, here's a pic of the "first place" package:

So are you ready to hear who the lucky winners are???

Drum roll please! The "first place" package which includes the orange and black rag garland, the crow gameboard, and the ceramic pie plate with potpourri (there will be a couple of extras in this package as well) is:

Jessica @ Country Whispers!!!!

And the "runner up" package goes to:

Samantha @ Samantha's Accessories and More!!!

Congrats to both of you lovely ladies. Thank you so much for following me and if you will e-mail me your mailing addys, I will get your packages right out to you! You can e-mail me at

Thank you all for signing up for my giveaway. I love doing these giveaways and am already planning in my head for the next one. So if you didn't win this one, don't fret!

Until next time. . .

Thursday, September 9, 2010

My Fall Ornies

Good morning friends! I wanted to get this posted yesterday, but I just ran out of steam! So here is my first attempt at making fall/halloween salt dough ornies. I had a blast doing these and learned a few things in the process as well.

The recipe I used is:

2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup salt
1 cup warm water

I mixed all this together to form my dough, then floured my counter top and used a rolling pin to roll out the dough. I used cookie cutters to cut out my shapes. I made leaves, moons, stars, cats, bats, pumpkins, sunflowers, and some tiny candy corn that I just shaped with my fingers since I didn't have a cutter for that shape.
Here's my ornies all cut out and ready to bake:

I baked them at 300 degrees for about 45 minutes. The recipe called for baking up to an hour, but my ancient oven bakes everything fast so I kept a close eye on them and 45 minutes did it for me. After they came out of the oven, I let them cool for a bit and then I painted the ornies. After they dried, I diluted some brown craft paint with water and brushed it on then immediately wiped most of it off with a paper towel. This gave my ornies an aged look. Then I found some tea light candles at the dollor store in a maple sugar fragrance. I melted these down in a bowl on a tart warmer and dipped my ornies in them. I gently shook off the excess wax and laid them back on my foil lined pan to set up.

These were so much fun to do and I will be making some more. One of the things I learned was that you should paint both sides of the ornies. I only painted one side of my ornies thinking no one would see the back. Duh! If I wanted to give them as gifts, of course they are going to see the back. So the next batch will definitely be painted on both sides. I also need to perfect my waxing technique a bit. Some of my ornies were a bit clumpy after the wax dried on them so I'm not sure why that happened. I also need to be more consistent with the width of my dough when I roll it out for cutting. Some of my ornies were thicker in places and thinner in others. But other than that, it was easy and a whole lot of fun.

Here's some of my ornies I have displayed:

Until next time. . .

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

How to Tuesday ~ Faux Caramel Apples

Hey everybody! Whew, I am tuckered out! I really enjoy these long weekends, but it is killer going back to work on Tuesday. One of my jobs is opening and distributing the mail and I also have to do the daily deposit. Well, let me tell ya, having four days worth of mail to do in one day takes forever!!!! Not to mention all the checks I have to sort and batch up. So needless to say, I pay dearly for that coveted holiday break!

When I showed y'all my faux caramel apples, I had a couple of people ask me to do a tutorial on them. I know that most of y'all already know how to do these, but I'm gonna post a tutorial on how I did mine, because it's my blog and I'll post whatever I want! LOL!

Here are the supplies I used: faux green apples (I got mine at Wal-Mart for $1.00 a piece. I've also seen them at the Dollar Tree), craft sticks or popsicle sticks, tan colored craft paint, a plastic bowl with lid, a plastic spoon, Mod Podge Matte Glue, corn cob liter, freezer paper, clear treat bags, and pretty fall themed ribbon.

Step 1: Cut a small slit in the apple where the stem is. I used an ordinary steak knife for this step. You don't have to cut a deep hole. I just stuck the knife in and pushed it slightly. Just be careful!!

Step 2: Insert craft sticks into the hole you just made.

Step 3: Mix glue with the paint in a plastic bowl or plastic cup with the plastic spoon. I used an old Cool Whip bowl because I wanted to keep the leftover mixture to do more apples later and the glue/paint mixture won't dry out if it's covered. The amounts of each you will use will vary depending on how many apples you are doing. For the three I did, I used about 1/3 bottle of glue and just squirted a glob of the paint in. Stir together until well blended. You can add more paint if you want your "caramel" to be darker. Just note: the glue/paint mixture will dry darker on the apples than it appears in your bowl so keep that in mind.

Step 4: Tear off a piece of wax paper big enough to set your apples on and to catch excess drippage. Place each apple on the wax paper and using your plastic spoon, spoon your paint mixture over the top of the apple starting at the craft stick. Let the paint run down the sides of the apple, leaving some of the green showing. I recommend doing a couple of layers because if you just do one layer of the paint mixture, it will dry somewhat transparent. Two layers seem to work pretty good.

Step 5: Take a handful of the cob liter and sprinkle on each apple. These are your "nuts". I had a hard time finding this item locally. I ended up finding it at a Wal Mart in another town in the pet section. I tried using some small aquarium gravel before I found the cob liter, but it didn't look right and was too heavy for the apples. So if you can't find the liter at your Wal Mart, I'd suggest checking with a pet store or maybe a vet's office to see if they can help you. If anybody has any other ideas on what would be good to use for the "nuts", I'd love to hear them!
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Step 6: Tear off a fresh piece of wax paper and transfer your apples to it to let them set up and dry for at least 24 hours. Cause if you don't, this is what you will end up with:

Step 7: Once your apples are dry, you are done! I put mine in a clear treat bag and tied them up with some pretty ribbon and a hang tag I made.

Until next time. . .

Monday, September 6, 2010

Made for Monday ~ A Fall Topiary!

Hi everyone! Hope everyone is having a great Labor Day weekend. Mine has been pretty good. We were able to go the local flea market this morning, but unfortunately I didn't find any treasures to bring home with me. Well, I did find some but it seemed like they were asking for an arm and a leg for everything. So I came home and decided to do some crafting! I have been seeing fall topiaries all over blogland and decided I wanted to try to make one myself. I had all the supplies I needed except for the flowers, the styrofoam ball, and the foam for the vase. All the other stuff I already had in my craft stash. I am very pleased with the way it turned out!

Here is how I did it:

First I gathered all my supplies together. I used a small terra cota vase that had been whitewashed, some floral foam, a 4 inch styrofoam ball, 2 bushes each of 3 different colored flowers, some moss, 4 small dowel rods, twine, and some scrap ribbon.

Next, I cut some of the floral foam and inserted it firmly into my vase. You could hot glue this down, I suppose, but I didn't.

Then I took my 4 dowel rods, gathered them together in a bunch and ran a bead of hot glue down between each dowel.

Then I took my twine and wrapped it around the rods, leaving about an inch or so exposed at the top and bottom.

The next step was to insert one end of the dowels into the foam in my vase and attach the foam ball into the top end.

Then I started attaching my flowers. All I did was cut each flower stem a bit below the leaf, leaving enough stem to push the flower into the styrofoam ball. I worked my way around the ball, alternating my flowers randomly until I covered the entire ball. I filled in any gaps with some moss and I also covered the foam in my vase with some moss as well.

Lastly, I tied on a pretty fall colored ribbon and, voila, a simple, inexpensive fall topiary that sits on my sewing machine just inside my front door. What a pretty, colorful welcome greeting!

The supplies for this one cost me under $10 (not counting what I already had on hand). I will definitely be making some more of these. It was easy and came together very quickly.

I also bought myself a beta fish this weekend and made a flower arrangement with the beta swimming in the bottom of the vase. I added some gingham ribbon to the vase to make it look a bit more country. I didn't take a picture but I will try to get one on soon.

I also started on some fall and halloween salt dough bowl fillers. I will share those with y'all on Wednesday. Hopefully I will have them finished by then!

I have to go back to work tomorrow. Bummer! I am thankful I have a job, but I REALLY enjoy these three day weekends!

Until next time. . .

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Some Swap Goodies!

I hope everyone is enjoying their Labor Day weekend! Mine is going pretty good. I have done something to my right foot and it is killing me so I haven't been able to do much shopping or go to any of the awesome yard sales that are prevalent around here on this holiday weekend. Oh well, at least I haven't been able to overspend, right?? See, there's good in everything if we only will look to find it!

I did an Autumn Swap with my friends over at Prim Pals Forum. Holli from Where the Rooster Crows was my partner for this swap and she spoiled me rotten!! She sent me some awesome grungy pumpkins, crow, and rooster along with a wheelbarrow, some gorgeous kitchen towels, a primitive dammit doll (which I've already used!), a travel mug and matching purse notepad with my initial on it, four cute little hot pads/pot holders with roosters on them, a cute little figurine of a turkey sitting on top of a pumpkin, a rooster plaque that says "I'm still a hot chick, it just comes in flashes now", a magnet that says "Lead me not into temptation, I can find the way myself", a beautiful fall themed hand embroidered towel, and as a joke, she also sent me a pair of unmentionables with the word "diva" stitched on them! It's a running joke with those girls over there that I am the diva of the forum! So it was a funny and cute little joke. Thanks for everything Holli, I love it all!

I have been pretty productive this weekend. Since I'm not able to do much on my feet, I've been busy crafting. I have finished up another rag garland, made some rag balls, I've done some more faux caramel apples which I will be doing a tutorial on on Tuesday since some of you have asked for one. I'm also planning on making some fall dough fillers and I'm going to be working some more on an fall afghan I'm crocheting. The weather has been a bit cooler this weekend and I think that helps me get more in the mood to craft. Fall is my favorite season and I am excited to pull out the sweaters and warm socks!

Until next time. . .

Friday, September 3, 2010

Fabulous Football Food Friday!

Good Friday morning to all! I am so thankful that this is a three day weekend for me, I need it!!! Our local high school football season has just gotten underway so I thought I'd share a quick and easy recipe that would be great for tailgating parties or as a quick snack before heading out to the game. I call these Pepperoni Bites and I found the recipe while surfing on line a while back. I've tweaked it a bit to suit my family's tastes.

Pepperoni Bites

1 can biscuits (not the flaky kind)
sliced pepperoni
shredded Italian or mozzarella cheese
Italian Seasoning
Garlic Powder
Melted butter
Parmesan cheese

Cut each biscuit in half. Place two slices of pepperoni on each half, top pepperoni with a bit of shredded cheese and roll up. Pinch the edges of the biscuit together to seal and place seam side down on baking sheet. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning and garlic powder to taste. Make sure none of the bites are touching each other as they will stick together during baking. Bake according to directions on biscuit can. When they come out of the oven, brush with melted butter and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

These are so yummy and quick to make up. You can also heat up some spaghetti sauce or marinara sauce to use for dipping. We like to take melted butter and add some garlic powder to it and use this for dipping. Sometimes I'll even make a big batch of these and serve them for dinner with a salad. A quick and easy meal under 30 minutes! Works for me! I am linking this up to Colleen's Recipe Swap over at And Baby Makes Five. Click here to check out all the great recipes on her blog.

So, what's on tap for this final unofficial last long weekend of summer? We haven't made any plans here. There's a huge flea market about an hour from us in a small town that is held every year during Labor Day weekend. We've thought about heading up for that, but it's usually so crowded and that makes it hard to look at things so I'm not sure I feel like doing that. I have some craft things to finish up for Char's Autumn Swap that I am participating in so I need to do that. Then there's always the household chores that are never ending!

Well, gotta run for now and finish getting ready for work. Don't forget about my Fall/Halloween giveaway. If you haven't signed up, scroll down to my last post and do it! I hope everyone has a wonderful and safe Labor Day weekend!

Until next time. . .