Beauty Out the Rear Window

It’s been a rough couple of days…weeks, a year really, and I wasn’t necessarily looking forward to a wet, overcast Monday today. Seeing my mom on two separate occasions last week just really broke my heart. 💔 It is so hard for me to see the suffering she is going through and feeling my hands are tied. The 26th will be a year since the doctor caused her stroke. And if I were to be honest, it’s hard for me to enjoy much of anything in my own life because of it. She is always, always on my mind and in my prayers! I tried hard today to let God in, to take my heavy load, it’s a continual load, but He reminds me He is STILL here and to look for beauty where I can. It is an attitude adjustment I surely struggle with but today, right now, I choose to focus on the beauty He has given me out my rear window.

Make a Fall Basket/Purse for $11

If you follow any Instagram decorating account, you will see a small basket or straw purse hanging on a peg or front door. It has pretty much become a staple in home decorating.

Also, you will quickly see how expensive those baskets or straw items are. But you could buy one at a flea market or garage sale. Maybe you even have an old leather purse hanging around. I had several straw bags back in the day and was thinking how I should’ve kept them for decor items.

We now see that EVERYTHING comes back around, but I would’ve needed a warehouse to keep all my old stuff around!

So when I found a sturdy, straw purse with pom poms, in the local Five Below store, I thought I could easily make something out of it. Especially, when it was only $5.00…score!

Artificial flowers can quickly add up as well, so finding flowers at the Dollar Tree can cut down expenses as well. Each bundle was $1.00

First, I pulled the poms off the purse because I didn’t particularly like blue. (I may use them for a Fourth of July project later. #frugal 😉

Then, I decided to use some old packing paper for filler since my purse was fairly deep. (I didn’t want everything to fall down inside.) You could use old rags or large floral foam also.

I ended up not having to cut the wires nor glue anything but just kept all the flowers in tact and gathered them up like a bouquet to see which flowers looked best around the outside. Then, I just shoved them down in on top of the paper and did a bit of arranging within the purse.

My purse is heavy enough to stand alone, but you could easily put a vase or can of paint in the bottom to help it stand alone. Originally, I was thinking I would hang it on a door knob or on the front door with a wreath hanger…and still may do it. Either way, it’s cute and can be refilled with different flowers or stems for different seasons. You could even add a bow, a small sign or I was thinking I may even glue fringe or some kind of trim on it as well.

So, my total cost of everything was a whopping $11.00! Yep, 11 bucks!

Try looking at every day items in a different way and come up with some unique arrangement or placement. 🤔

What have you made using fairly inexpensive items or unexpected things?

PS Liz Marie Galvin’s book was waiting for me at the post office after we got back from our long trip to Yellowstone and the Tetons. I hope to dig into it today! If you’re not following her, you should. I also hope to blog about our trip soon!

Happy Saturday!🍃🍂🍁

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Easter Decorations

I LOVE Easter and all the spring colors.

I bought a lot of Easter decor this year; probably more than I’ve ever purchased before.

My mother painted this little chick many decades ago, and I decided to use all the wild violets in the yard as a backdrop. I’ve never seen this many. It looks like faint, purple blankets laying all over the yard.spring chickI’ve been playing with flatlays on Instagram.

bunny flatlay

I just thought these bunny plates were so cute and vibrant!

bunny plates

bunny flatlaypinkbasket decorrabbit and blossom decorwooden eggs

Did anyone else decorate?

Are you having a big Easter dinner with family?

What yummy things do you cook/bake?

2016 HGTV Dream Home Contest

Some of my favorite shows to watch are Fixer Upper as well as House Hunter,  House Hunter International, and….

Well, let’s just say I love all house-related shows.

I guess because I enjoy decorating and the creative ways people flip houses; these type of shows just draw me in.

Then, with House Hunter Int’l…well, I love to travel too; so, it’s the best of both worlds!


I loved just about everything concerning this 2016, HGTV Dream Home.

house

source

Too bad I didn’t win it. 😦

But, I always keep trying! I usually enter for all my family members too. (I have all their personal information down pat, ha!)

Mainly, I keep entering because we have had a family member win a car, we won a commercial shoot/college scholarship, a cruise, and some other smaller winnings.

My last winning was $500 worth of toys from Ross. I no longer have kids at home, so I donated the toys to Toys for Tots...Go, Marines ! (You know I’m all about the Marine Corps.)

Two years ago, I missed a $500, holiday, shopping spree at Kohls.

Yeah, I know. 😦

I was very ill, for over three months. (Literally, not just from losing this opportunity.)

And, unbeknownst to me, I had won via a Twitter contest I signed up for, on a whim.

I was brand new to Twitter and didn’t even think to check my account.

I wasn’t even sure how Twitter worked at the time, and I later found an old message stating I needed to reply ASAP.

By the time I had contacted Kohls, it was too late. 😦

HUGE BUMMER!

(And yes, it really was a valid contest. And yes it really was Kohls contacting me.)

Just SICK, I tell ya! That sure would’ve helped out around Christmastime.

They just wouldn’t award it to me, because I missed the deadline to reply! UGGH.

Anyhow, I keep entering stuff.

It never hurts to try, right?


Getting back to the house contest.

Some of the features of this 2016, HGTV home, I really liked. Like this tile and

Like this tile and cabinet color!!

inside-dream-home

And another, THIS porch.

It looked so charming and inviting.

front porch columns of 2016 HGTV Dream Home

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The gray, painted brick with the accent of slate against the posts just added dimension and interest. I was thinking if you had old brick columns, you could paint them and add the slate.

And the porch with grouted slate…such neat detailing.

To view the entire home, here’s the HGTV link.

AND, try entering their contests…you never know! 😉

 

 

Make A Flag Topper to Enhance a Simple Wedding Cake

make a simple flag bunting topper for wedding cake

Make a Flag Topper to Enhance a Simple Wedding Cake

Take a simple cake from a local store (ie SAMS, Costco or local grocery store) and make it unique by adding your own flags and some flowers and voila!!…a customized cake for cheap   that was less expensive!

My daughter liked the flag idea for the top of her cake. However, I could not find any pre-made flags the right size for patterns, to place on the cake nor any of the colors of her wedding.

So, I decided to make my own. It was super easy and fun!!

flag supplies

Supplies you’ll need:
A heavier weight or “stiffer” paper for making a pattern for your flags. We used scrapbook paper in multiple colors. We found individual sheets (which is much cheaper) esp. if you get them on sale to boot like we did at Hobby Lobby. So, they were just pennies… YAY me! You can also find them in book form with a common color scheme at most craft stores.

Some bakers twine , jute twine, or I used a two-toned silver/copper wire from Hobby Lobby. Just think about how you want the flags to hang. (Do you want the string taut or have a swag to it.)

Glue stick for paper flags and heavier glue to secure beads/wire to skewers.

Two, wooden dowel rods or skewers from Hobby Lobby. (You could paint these but I liked the bare look of the wood.)

Beads if you want a more finished look to the top of each skewer.

flags to top a cake

Directions:
First, decide the scale of each flag’s keeping the size of your cake tier in mind. (I mean, you don’t want too tiny of flags for a large cake or vis versa.)

Then, decide how long they should string across the cake. You want to make sure it’s not too long for the size of the cake layer you’ll be stringing the flags across. But not so short you only get 2 flags on your wire…that’d just look weird. 🙂

Lay out the way you want your design to look.

Cut out the flags by placing the pattern on the fold to make it easier to attach to your string or wire later.

pattern for cutting out flag topper

Decide the spacing between each flag as well as color and shape of each flag.

flags to top a wedding cake

Arrange on the wire and glue the paper together first by folding. BE CAREFUL on how much glue you use as it can bleed through the paper.

I thought it’d look more interesting to make different flag shapes, so I placed alternating flags on the wire. Also, try some “see thru” papers adding a color underneath as I did with this black and white designed paper. I liked how the pink paper showed through.

a

I later tied wrapped and frayed the ends of the wire to make fancier “tassels” then  secured them to the skewers. Make sure they are tight or glued so they don’t slide down the stick.

Most importantly, make sure you think about how the wooden rods will angle once inserted into the cake.

This way you won’t keep poking holes in your cake. I kind of practiced after laying out a template of the diameter of my tier since I didn’t have the cake in front of me yet.

Now add some flowers and VOILA!…a unique design for your cake! (Wish I had a clearer picture! ugh)

I do think our topper of flags turned out really cute and with all the other added expenses for this wedding, we definitely saved on the cake!

Here’s the initial cake we ordered from SAMS. but we removed some of the designs to make it more simple.

(We had other desserts anyhow; this was just for the cake cutting ceremony anyhow.  😉

Need more ideas? More pictures from the wedding can be found here: http://wp.me/p5ntHO-aZ

To make an easy ring box look here: http://wp.me/p5ntHO-ae

Make flag topper bunting for wedding cake

Make a cake flag topper.

Have you tried something like this? Tell me what you designed?

Speaking of cakes check out my friends’ business. Her cakes are the most unbelievable work of art, EVER! https://www.facebook.com/thecakeryartisticbakery/?fref=ts