Friday, January 27, 2017

Bringing Home the Tree

I just had to share a couple of things.  First of all, remember that plate above?  It was a Christmas gift from my wonderful daughter Carrie.  A few weeks later, we were celebrating my birthday at Carrie's home.  As I unwrapped a package, I commented that the box felt like the right size and shape to contain an electric wax or tart warmer.  Carrie was smiling ...

I was right!  I had no idea what the wax warmer would look like, however.   Oh, what fun!  It matches the plates!  Even more fun, the headlights of the station wagon are actually openings where the light can shine through when the wax warmer is in use.

I couldn't resist.  I recently started a new Pinterest board, Bringing Home the Tree.  Head on over and visit if, like me, you never really get enough of Christmas.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Lighted garland at Christmas time

Love this little card from my friend Susan
Over the past couple of days I have switched out the items on the lighted evergreen garland above the picture window.  Now it is all snowflakes and icicles.  Some years I put those on at Christmas time and leave them up until February, when I add some red felt hearts.  But this year I couldn't find my box of snowflakes and icicles (I've located it now, however) so I added some different, random items for a Christmas look.  I showed these photos, or some of them, on my regular blog, but I know that not everyone reads both blogs.  So here we go.  I don't think I have taken any photos this year that show the entire garland; just bits and pieces.

This little sort of "basket" (at right) made from a Christmas card is from my friend Ann in New Zealand.  Gotta make some of those!
The little assemble-it-yourself chalet was from my friend LJ a few years back.
I won this adorable mitten in a giveaway by Linda Stubbs at Prairie Flower Farm a few years ago.
This ornament is new this Christmas from some of  my local grandkids; the snowflake is one I was able to find.
This delightful apron card is made by my friend Edna.  Notice the little oven mitt at the top!
This photo of a card from my friend DJ does not do it justice.  It's a beautiful card and I love how it utilizes very small scraps of Christmas fabric for the tree.
Hope you've enjoyed these glimpses of my evergreen garland!  All of these fun items made me smile whenever I looked at it this season.

Friday, January 20, 2017

A different look for the Christmas Star doily

 I might as well start calling these Christmas Star doilies.   The original pattern called it a Christmas star dishcloth.  But it seems to me that these would make a nice doily-type item for Christmas decorating, not just a dishcloth.  And in fact, everyone that I've gifted with one of these has said just that -- they see them as doilies and plan to use them as such.  Here is the link to the free pattern, which downloads as a pdf and is easy and fun to crochet:  Christmas Star Dishcloth.

 The original pattern calls for cream colored yarn with gold yarn on the edging part, but to my mind white yarn with red or green edging looks even nicer.  I have done some in cream yarn with a burgundy edge --  a dark forest green edging would be pretty with the cream as well.

I was making a few of these for my gift stash and decided to try a green star with red edging as seen at the top of the post.  Then I was inspired to do one with variegated Christmas yarn.  This yarn, which was given to me,  actually has gold sparkles in it as well.   Obviously, neither this nor the green one would work well at all as dishcloths, but would be fine as doilies or decorative mats.

I think I still like the white with red edging the best, however.  Now I need to make a few of these for myself.  This might make a simple project to work on at the beach this summer!

Monday, January 16, 2017

A simple little project

I'm finally getting around to show pictures of a simple ornament I put together in December.

Back in November I took part in a cookie swap at a local library.  One of the librarians had all of the makings available for a simple craft -- an ornament made with a canning jar lid.  She had the lids, plus ribbon and trims, and Christmas cards, fabric, etc.  My granddaughter Julia and I each made an ornament.  When I left the library that evening, I had the basic ornament to take home with me.  I used the inner part of the lid to trace a circle on part of a Christmas card -- I chose one with a lighted house on it.  Then I ran a loop of red ribbon between the two parts of the lid to use as a hanger, and hot-glued the circle in place.  The pretty gold and white trim made an attractive edge as I hot-glued that around the inner part of the rim.

I didn't hang the ornament right away because I kept thinking it needed a little something more.  I think it was after Christmas when I finally found time to finish it.  I took some yellow glitter glue and brushed it over the lighted windows in the scene with a toothpick, and let that dry.  Later, I gently brushed Mod Podge over the entire scene, and sprinkled it with fine glitter.  Once that was dry, I hot-glued a small sprig of red berries and green leaves to the top inner edge.

I was pleased with how it came out, although the back of the ornament is not so pretty -- festooned with strings of hot glue.  People were waiting in line for the glue gun at the library and so I had to hurry.  If I make more of these, I will make every effort to be more careful with the hot glue. 

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Oh what fun!

... it is to ride in a car with a tree on top!  🌲

I've shared before how I love the look of vehicles with Christmas trees on top.  My daughter Carrie knows me well!  She gave me a glittery gift bag with a scene similar to this on it, though not exactly the same:
image from Pinterest
In the bag were the adorable Christmas cards which you see at the top of the post, plus several other fun items she had found.

Sorry for the blurry picture; but this is a sweet tray.
The blurry photo doesn't show the details well, but I love the red and black checked border!
Just the cutest!
She found the plate above at Walmart and bought two of them for me.  Simply the cutest!  Notice all of the detail on this plate, with the background, snowflakes, and so on.  Love it!

Hope you've had fun viewing some of my favorite gifts ever!

Monday, January 02, 2017

Coconut Gingeroons

I've had this recipe a long time and can't even remember where I got it.  The cookies are the molasses ones with the red and green sugar on the racks above.  I copied the recipe from a magazine or cookbook onto a blank card without noting the source. 

I don't make these every year, but I always need to make some sort of spice cookie for my assortments.  Sometimes I make Pepparkakor, sometimes Gingersnaps, but this year I decided to make the Coconut Gingeroons.  They are very good, and a little bit different, but they never taste quite as good as they sound, given the delicious ingredients.  I keep hoping that one year they will magically be wonderful.

I'm thinking that if I followed the directions as far as the size of the cookies (I always make them smaller) and the directions for baking them on foil and dipping the tops in water, that might do the trick.  I've never followed the directions exactly -- and that does tend to be important!

Here's the recipe:
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. soda
1 1/2 tsp. ginger
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup molasses
1 egg
2 cups shredded coconut
Water for dipping
Sugar for dipping

Sift together the dry ingredients.  Beat butter till creamy with an electric mixer.  Beat in brown sugar, then egg and molasses, until fluffy.  Stir in the flour mixture until smooth, then stir in the coconut.  Chill dough for several hours.

Roll dough by level tablespoonfuls to form balls. Quickly dip tops into water, then in sugar.  Place on foil-covered cookie sheet.  Flatten slightly.

Bake 15 minutes at 375º or until lightly browned.  Cool on racks.  Makes 3 1/2 dozen.