Happy Halloween Cat



This is Linus, or Lucy. . .or Lucky.  Found a good place to curl up after the apples were emptied from the bushel basket to make cider.


Have a safe and happy Halloween weekend!

Published in: on October 29, 2010 at 5:44 am  Leave a Comment  

Last Weekend’s Leaves


Though I know there have been a lot of photos of pretty fall leaves out there lately, I had to share mine, especially now that most of them have been blown off the trees in the wind storm.


Just standing on the ground looking up does not capture how beautiful and tall these trees are.



These are all at the farm and are old and majestic.  There are places for seventeen people to swing at one time, if they wanted.  We have spent countless hours swinging.  Some of them are good for climbing too.  Every time we get a big wind storm like yesterday, I think of those trees standing strong, hoping none of them topple.



Had to photograph this Burning Bush too.


Just beautiful.

Published in: on October 27, 2010 at 5:58 am  Leave a Comment  
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More Thrifted Sparkles

These came from the one of the very few garage sales I went to this summer.  Really, I love a good garage sale but this year I maybe went to five, and then I didn’t buy anything at most of those.  But I went to a sale at this lady’s house a couple years ago and remembered coming away with another handful of treasures like those above, most having found new life in some project.  And again these will be used in jewelry projects and on Christmas ornaments and packaging.  And the little yellow  Italian millefiore piece will probably be worn by me.  All this was less than three dollars because I remember that was all I had with me.  In the end, the lady just started adding pieces to my bag  just to be rid of them.  Happy, happy me!

Hold onto your hat today!

Published in: on October 26, 2010 at 9:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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Thrifted Bling

Thought I would share a collection of thrifted costume jewelry pieces I bought at the thrift store a few weeks ago so you could see the “before”, before I use them in various projects.  The whole bag was less than three dollars.  It included couple very cool pieces like the top hat and cane and the four leaf clover.



I will use them on some holiday gift packaging and Christmas ornaments, and a couple will be added to some necklaces I’ve been working on.  Hopefully they will be available for my upcoming holiday open house and craft shows.


Happy Monday!

Published in: on October 25, 2010 at 5:53 am  Comments (1)  
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Needle Felted Autumn

Thought I would share some photos of the pretty shelf my mother-in-law recently purchased and hung in her dining room.  She saw it in an antique shop and knew it would be perfect for this collection of china.  (Click to enlarge the photo.)  These very few pieces were her grandmother’s and now have a perfect place to be appreciated.


After one of our fun Saturdays spent running around the countryside, trying to find a certain barn sale, which we never found, and a quick apple cider donut at an orchard, we stopped at Esther’s Place in Big Rock.    She waited in the car with P, who had fallen asleep, while I poked my head in.  But I knew they both would enjoy it as well, and before we knew it an hour had passed.  After I narrowed my choices down to four balls of wool (all in shades of green), we arrived home and decorated the shelf with the little pumpkins we bought at the orchard.



I thought the shelf could use some needle felted acorns (with real acorn hats) and pumpkins, so I made more and delivered them to her the next day.



A fun reminder of the day.


Happy Friday!

Published in: on October 22, 2010 at 9:11 am  Comments (1)  
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Just One

Seriously, just one brown m&m in the bag.


Published in: on October 21, 2010 at 5:34 am  Leave a Comment  
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Another Beautiful Weekend At The Farm

Think I snapped about 240 photos this past weekend at the farm.  So many pretty things just beginning their show.  And while I love a pretty flower garden, I have been drawn to the structural parts of the garden lately.  The rustling grasses that were so lush and full all summer and stood by while the flowers got their attention, are now the focus.




When the sun shines just so, they are truly beautiful, golden and crackley in a gentle breeze.



And some of them have grown very, very tall.   The grasses that is.




The branches of this bush-like tree is a natural trellis for fall gourds to grow up.  We couldn’t really see that they were even there until the leaves began falling a couple weeks ago.    When the gourds dry up we stomp them to release the seeds back into the ground to ensure more grow next year.



They hang like Christmas ornaments.  Some are so high they can’t be reached.  But that’s ok.  They will become ornaments when the season changes.



This very heavy, bumply gourd (though it may be a squash) was not hanging in the tree.  Now it is decorating the porch.




Happy, happy Wednesday!


(Ok M, how many super-speller words did I use today?)

Published in: on October 20, 2010 at 9:17 am  Comments (1)  
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Autumn Decorating

Just a few touches of Autumn decorating in our home so far.  I don’t have too much Halloween decor, no scarecrows on my porch or bones strewn about the yard (Hi Michelle).  I will be happy if we carve a pumpkin this year.  And inside, there’s more a feeling of fall and harvest and handmade, so I thought I’d share a few pictures of how I welcome this season.


Hydrangeas in my thrifted white pottery (this is just a tiny portion of that collection).  The little black crow is from the dollar store but needed something so he got a diamond brooch and bow tie.  This pumpkin is also from the dollar store and is decoupaged with old yellowed book pages and perched atop a wood candlestick.



Think he looks better here.




Our mantle complete with twinkle lights, for added twinkle of course, more white pottery, hydrangeas,  and another crow.  This one is tin and came from Restoration Hardware many years ago.


I bought that picture at a garage sale for two dollars with the intent of painting the frame black and adding a mirror but that hasn’t happened yet.  And it may not  because this has kind of grown on me.


I like birds in decorating though I would never have a pet bird.  And though crows usually seem rather ominous and foreboding, mine are welcoming and friendly, right?   At least they don’t make that annoying “caw caw” noise and land in the street to eat. . .whatever is there, or fly at your head.



How do you decorate for Autumn?

Published in: on October 19, 2010 at 6:29 am  Comments (1)  
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Brookfield Zoo Visit

Last Monday, Columbus Day, we went to the zoo, along with everyone else.  And though I knew there would be a lot of other families with the same thought, being a holiday and a gorgeous fall day, it wasn’t epically crowded.  The animals were particularly active too since it was quite comfortable for October.


Spent a lot of time saying hello to the camels.  We really like camels.



But the giraffes were our favorite on this day.  They are so beautiful and graceful.



Not afraid to come over and say hello before bending to take a nibble.




Oh, hello again.



The autumn grasses were just beautiful in the sunlight.



Of course we visited the  new bear habitat.   The polar bear jumped in the water for a cool-down and swam right up to the glass where P was standing, but of course that photo didn’t turn out.  It was amazing though.  After a visit to the veterinarian’s office in the Hamlin Children’s Zoo,



it was time for a ride on the merry-go-round.  I think that is P’s favorite thing at the zoo.  And we are very specific about the animal we ride.  This time, a penguin and then a kangaroo.




It was a great day out.

Published in: on October 18, 2010 at 9:13 am  Leave a Comment  
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Bunco For Breast Cancer

Last night I attended this amazing annual fund-raiser for breast cancer research.  My mother-in-law has treated us, (this year our group consisted of one of her daughters and three daughters-in-law) to this evening out for the last four years  and it has become an evening I look forward to each October.  Thank you S!  Last night, in a room full of pink shirts, pink hair, and pink cupcakes, about 150 women played bunco, listened to stories of survival and loss, remembered those no longer with us, ate and so generously gave their time and money for this cause.   And after all the fun came the raffles.

Now, I usually never win, anything, even when everyone is guaranteed at least a door prize.  I have a long history of not winning.  But this year made up for it.  I won two raffles!

First, I won a beautiful planter and a gift card from Blumen Gardens in Sycamore.    Isn’t it lovely?  Everyone in our group even said it is so me.  (Of course I did drop several tickets in the bag hoping to increase my odds.  It worked!)  I was thrilled and can not wait to visit and shop.  Thank you Blumen Gardens!

Shortly after that they called my name again and this time I won this beautiful handmade necklace.  (Again I dropped several tickets in the bucket hoping to win.  Guess it worked again.)

It is a lovely soldered image of a bird, made by Kathy Semrick of Handcrafted from the Heart.  The box is beautiful too.  And I have to say I think I squealed in front of all those women to see I’d won this too!

This more than made up for a long string of not winning.  But more important than bringing home a prize is that 100% of the money raised at the event through donations, entrance fees, and the purchase of raffle tickets, goes directly to breast cancer research.

And look at the sweet little heart cookie I brought home for my daughter.

Oh wait, that’s not a heart.  It took me a while.  Just darling, though to my seven year old, it can be a beautiful little heart.

Have a lovely weekend!