Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year~

I would like to wish you all a very Happy & Blessed New Year! 

Stay Safe and Enjoy!

Hugs, Laura 

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Whatcha Working on Wednesday... Getting Ready for Valentines Day Already!

What a wonderful Christmas I had with family and friends.  I cherish every moment we had together.  I even was able to get 3 out my 4 children to church with my husband and I Christmas morning... which at their ages 22,21,19,17 is tricky at best sometimes! ;-)  My oldest daughter would have been there too...but she spent Christmas Eve with her fiance and his mother.  They drove up to our house Christmas Day in the morning to celebrate with us! 

As my children get older, and create lives with a significant other, I realize now, how hard it will be to wiggle out room without putting stress on them to be here. That is why I made a promise to my husband that I will never make them feel bad for having to be at their in-laws, etc... and I will be thankful for the time we do have!  This was my first Christmas dealing with that... and  see that there will be many more in the future.

Whatcha Working on Wednesday... 

valentine craft

I am working on  my family's Valentines!

I am starting early this year because these are going to take some time!  But I will get them done!  I am making one for each of my children and for my husband!

52 Reasons I Love You!

I found some beautiful Valentines Day Scrap booking papers at Hobby Lobby yesterday... and I am going decorate each card and then place on each card my reason that I love them, or that they make me smile.  I also found the binders at HL... I just have to make sure that I carefully put the holes in the same place on each card so that they lie properly.

Well, that's what I am up to!  I hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

Hugs, Laura 

Monday, December 19, 2011

Mason Jar Monday ~ Couple of cute ideas for Christmas Decor

Pinned Image

Okay, so this is using the same premise of the epsom salts and votives, but how cute is this to place them on your staircase?  Just tuck a few sprigs of greenery and some "unbreakable" ornaments and, what a beautiful scene!  For the mice, just cut out of black construction paper.

You can also use glass glitter to decorate your mason jars.

All  you need is

  • Design of your choice (find them on google or magazine)

  • Glass hurricane lamp/Mason Jar

  •  tape

  • Glue

  • Bottle with fine-tip applicator

  • Bowl

  • Clear glass glitter

  • Cake stand

  • Candle

  • Photocopy design of your choice, enlarging to fit into a glass hurricane or mason jar. Roll up the template and slide it inside the glass, with the design facing outward. Secure at the top with  tape. Using glue in bottle with a fine-tip applicator, outline one section of the design, then fill it in.

    Working over a bowl, sprinkle with clear glass glitter. Let glue dry; shake off excess glitter. Glue and glitter the next section of the design. Continue all the way around. Remove template; let dry overnight. Place hurricane lamp/mason jar on a cake stand, and place candle inside.

    Wednesday, December 14, 2011

    Whatcha Working on Wednesday.... More Christmas Decorating~

    I love Christmas, it is honestly my favorite time of the year!

    And, I love to decorate for Christmas!

    Here are some photos of Christmas decor that makes me happy... enjoy!

    Will post my home all decorated for the holidays soon.

    Simple Country Christmas Decorating
    Simple, yet sweet.

    Decorating country style
    Something to with that old metal crate.

    country decorating
    Can you tell I love centerpieces??

    Country Christmas
    I love that bookshelf to the side of the fireplace.

    country Christmas
    All set for dinner.

    Country Christmas mantel
    My favorite fruit...pomegranates!

    Country Christmas Tree
    Favorite color... red.

    country Christmas
    One more centerpiece! :-)

    country christmas decor
    I love this old truck.

    country christmas
    more red! 

    Country Christmas
    Old wheelbarrow filled with greens and berries.

    country christmas
    I am a sucker for old barns too.

    See you tomorrow! Have a Happy Wednesday!!

    Hugs, Laura 

    Monday, December 12, 2011

    Tis the Season with another Giveaway at Dixie Sampler

    Surprise Giveaway at Dixie Sampler

    Stop on over at: for a chance to sign up!

    Hugs, Laura 

    Give Away at Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe

    Give Away at Victorian Motto Sampler Shoppe!

    Wouldn't you love a chance to win this beautiful hand dyed floss??  Oh the wonderful things you could do with it!

    Mason Jar Monday ~ Christmas Centerpiece Ideas

    Here is a super cute EASY centerpiece idea for you.

    Find a nice ole primitive box,  center a few mason jars with votives inside and the fill with greens, berries, some ornaments, pinecones... what ever you have on hand.  You now have an instant, adorable centerpiece.

    Don't have the old box... but want a similar look?  gather some greens and cranberries.  Place inside jar and fill with water to the top.  Place floating candle on top, and light.  So beautiful!

    Happy Monday!  
    Hugs, Laura 

    Friday, December 9, 2011

    Friday Feast ~ Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Sweet Potatoes

    This is such an easy meal idea and just delicious!  Plus, it is super good for you! My family loves this meal when I make it.  I usually serve it with some rolls and a nice green salad!


     No-Stick Cooking Spray
    2 pounds sweet potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
    1 cup orange juice
    2 teaspoons dried oregano, divided
    2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil
    2 teaspoons finely chopped garlic
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
    1-1/2 pounds pork tenderloin

    Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray 13x9-inch baking pan with cooking spray.
    Place potatoes in baking pan. Combine orange juice and 1 teaspoon oregano in small bowl; pour over potatoes. Combine oil, garlic, remaining 1 teaspoon oregano, salt and pepper in small bowl. Coat pork with seasoned oil mixture; place on top of potatoes.
    Cover pan tightly with aluminum foil; bake 35 minutes. Increase oven temperature to 425°F. Remove foil; bake uncovered 10 to 15 minutes more or until pork is slightly pink in center (160°F) and potatoes are tender. Let pork stand 5 minutes before slicing.


    Wednesday, December 7, 2011

    Whatcha Working On Wednesday....

    Whatcha Working on Wednesday...

    Bearded Beanie Hat 


    I am working on making up a bunch of these hats for my son, soon to be son in law, and my other daughter's boyfriends.  They are so goofy looking but very warm for those Wisconsin winters!

    Here's how...

    For the Hat

    Bulky Weight Yarn
    No 11 Circular needles
    Set of DPN no. 11 needles

    With circular needles cast on 40 stitches
    Join in the round being careful not to twist stitches
    Work in K1 P1, ending in P1 every row until your hat measures 8 inches.

    Decrease Rows
    Knit 2 together until end of row, 20 stitches remain
    Using DPNs, knit 2 together, 10 stitches remain
    Cut yarn, leaving a long end, draw through all sts.
    tighten and fasten securely.

    For the Beard

    Bulky Yarn #5
    Straight needles no. 10

    Cast on 2 stitches, and knit every row
    Increase stitches by 1 at the beginning of every row and end of every row until you have 34 stitches

    First row of mouth of beard you will knit 15 stitches. Bring 14th stitch over the 15th stitch, this will begin to bind off for the mouth, bind off another 7 stitches.
    Knit to end of row.
    Knit to where your bind off begins.  Cast on 8 stitches. Turn work and knit to end of row.
    Knit 2 more rows.
    Cast off and add your beard to your hat.

    I will post a picture of my hats when they are done.

    Have Fun!

    Tuesday, December 6, 2011

    Tuesday Tutorial ... Paperback Christmas Trees

    Today we are going to make these adorable Paperback Christmas Trees!
    I think they look sweet with my snowbaby collection... and I love the look of the black and white pages.  You can even add glitter to them or spray paint them if you like.  These ones I left as is...

    Items you will need:

    paperback book
    glue gun
    exacto knife
    cutting board
    optional: glitter, spray paint, etc

    1. Okay, first find an old paperback book.

    2. Remove the cover, so that it looks like this.

    3.  Count out 30 pages, and carefully cut them away from the binding with the exacto knife.  Please be careful here... I found it easiest to almost saw into them to remove them.

    4.  Now keeping the binding edge facing the left side, take the right had top of your page and fold over so that it reaches the middle seam.  Flatten the folded edge so it is crisp and sharp.  It should make a small triangle.

    5.  Now take the edge of your triangle and fold again against the seam.  Sort of like making a paper airplane. :-)
    Again, crisp out your folded edges.

    Now... you have a choice you can fold up your "over hang" or cut it off even with the bottom of the page.  I decided I like the look of cutting if off, which I do at the very end after all the folding has been done.

    6.  Continue in the same manner until all of the 30 pages are folded.  Now, if you decided to wait and cut off the overhang... take your cutting board, and exacto knife.  Lay the pages on the board and cut off the overhang.

     7.  Next, count out 30 more pages, and cut them away from the book.  This time hold the pages with the binding on the right side.  And begin folding in the same way you did before.

    8.  Complete the folding and cutting off the overhang.

    9.  Now you have two halves to your tree.

    10.  Now, open up one your tree halves some what so that you have a flat edge to glue.  Put hot glue on one half and carefully lay the other half on top, lining up the sides as you go.

    11. Now stand your tree up, and admire! 

    12.  Now decide if you like just as is, or if you would like to decorate it.

    Here is one glittered.

    And one that is painted and glittered.

    Monday, December 5, 2011

    Thought I would introduce you to my watch dog...

    Well, okay, she really just watches me, and is rarely 2 feet from me! She is a silly, silly girl ~ all 3 pounds of her! 

    Love my Bella; aka... Belly Button, But Nut, Stinker Bell, Belski

    For such a little girl, she sure has a lot of nick names! :-)

    Hope you enjoyed meeting Belly today.

    Hugs, Laura 

    Mason Jar Monday ~ Mason Jar Snowy Candle Lanterns

    Mason Jar Snowy Candles

    Aren't these too cute!!??  

    All you need are your mason jars, Epsom Salt, and white votive candles!

    Pour your Epsom salts in the bottom as high/low as you want, and add your candle... voila.  What a pretty look to line the entry to your home.

    In fact, that is exactly what I am going to do for our next party which is.....

    Our oldest daughter's ENGAGEMENT PARTY!

    Yes, that's my news! Our daughter's boyfriend proposed to her on Saturday at the very tip of Navy Pier! 

    I am so happy for her!!  And, her dad actually is excited to host an engagement party for her next month! Wow, I didn't even have to beg him! LOL

    Well, back to the candles... you could also use them as a centerpiece too.

    Hope you have a very blessed Monday!

    Hugs, Laura 

    Thursday, November 24, 2011

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    Happy Thanksgiving to you!

    What a wonderful day I had with family and friends! Made an amazing meal for all... but you know how that goes... only ate a teensy bit after preparing it all... and, now making a pizza! :-) lol

    I came up with a great outline/idea for my new cookbook! :-)  Yay!

    Blessings to you all...


    Wednesday, November 23, 2011

    Whatcha Working On Wednesday...

    Well... I am probably working on exactly what all of you are working on today... LOL

    Getting ready for Thanksgiving!

    I am headed off to the grocery store to shop for everything we need for dinner... plus, we live in Wisconsin so that means we also have a BIG game at noon too!  So, I have to make sure we have yummy and fun appetizers for the game!  That's not too hard, as long as I have my "Cocktail Meatballs" and my "Bogus Cheese Dip" we are all good! LOL 

    Think I will share those two recipes with you...just in case you are looking for some tasty vittles!

    Cocktail Meatballs

    2 pounds ground beef
    2 pkgs lipton onion soup mix
    1 can evaporated milk
    2 TB worcestershire sauce

    mix together well, and form small meatballs on an ungreased cookie sheet.  Broil one sheet at a time on high 4" from broiler until nicely browned.  Turn once and broil other side.

    In large pot or crock pot combine 2 cups ketchup, 1 cup brown sugar, 1 TB worcestershire sauce and add meatballs.  Simmer for about 1/2 hour.  

    Bogus Cheese Dip

    Okay, let me just say that my husband calls this BOGUS  because it doesn't look beautiful...but it tastes AMAZING! LOL

    1 block of white cheddar (I use Vermont Sharp Cheddar...but any will do)
    1 med. onion chopped
    1/2 cup mayonnaise
    1 TB chopped rosemary

    Combine all ingredients in oven safe dish.  Bake at 400 for about 1/2 hour until all melty and bubbly and slightly browned on top.

    I serve with crackers... but you probably could dip ANYTHING into this and it would be delicious!

    Happy Thanksgiving

    PS. Got 3 trees up yesterday... will post photos soon.

    Thursday, November 17, 2011

    29 ways to stay creative!

    Pinned Image
    I found this and loved it! 

    Thursday ~ Tip of the Day... Candles

    Tip of the Day!

    With Christmas right around the corner and all the candles we will be burning....

    Place your candles in the freezer for at least 3 hours before burning and they will burn slower and last up to 2x longer.

    I didn't believe this at first, but I did the experiment...and it does work.  I emptied out one of the door shelves in my freezer, and have a small stash of candles there... ready for me to pick up and light.  I just store them there... and have found that they do burn slower.  Of course, if you leave them out for a long period of time at room temp... they will just burn normally.

    Anyway...update on my son... AMAZING! 8 pounds so far this week!  me... not so much.  I have been CONSUMED with taking my sister in law to every appointment known to man!  Doctor here, doctor there... interviews, etc... I certainly hope my DH appreciates this! Ugh... Maybe I should consider getting a full time job on top of running my businesses???

    Happy Thursday!

    Wednesday, November 16, 2011

    A Primitive Place Stocking Giveaway!

    A Primitive Place ~Tammy

    Whatcha Working On Wednesday

    Today, I am working on making a few of these adorable Ornament Wreaths!

    These are going to my sweet daughter's boyfriend's house.  She asked if I could make a few for his front, back and laundry room doors.  And, since these are so simple... I said, why sure I can!

    So, all you need is one of those large plastic tubes of shatterproof Christmas balls, a metal hanger, a glue gun and some ribbon.

    First, you "should" take each hanger off the ornament and glue on with your glue gun.  I have made them before not glued them, and done okay, but inevitably...usually the following year, several ornament will come off...leaving a large whole.  So, it takes a little longer, but it pays off in the long run.

    Next, straighten out your hanger the best you can... leaving the hook in tact.  Then, round it out into a round wreath.

    Now, thread your ornaments on the wire... pushing them all the way to the hook.  Just keep threading, and when you put about your 50th ornament on...voila... you have a beautiful wreath!!

    Now, if you would like,  take your ribbon, and add a bow to the top to cover.  Use the hook to hang.


    Tuesday, November 15, 2011

    Quick, jumpover to Friendship Crossing and sign up for one of Tanya's your choice give aways!!  

    Tuesday Tutorial ... Vintage look garland

    Today we are making this adorable Vintage look garland!


    chip board letters for your word 
    5 1/2 in square decorative paper of your choice (2 pieces needed for each letter)
    3 1/2" x 5 1/2" cardstock ovals
    glue stick

    1.  Glitter your letters.

    2. Cut your ovals out of card stock.  You can purchase these pre-made also.  You can also add a little glitter to the edges of your ovals.

    3. Measure and cut your paper to size for your flowers.

    4.  Now you will accordian fold  your paper squares.  The easiest way I think, to do this is to fold in half, fold in half again, and then once again.  After you have done this, you will have to re fold to make sure both edges are folded UP.

    5.  Next you will want to fold your accordian together, and then fold in half and staple.  Do this to the other side as well.  Trim your the ends at a slant, making sure they all match and are cut in the same direction.

    6.  Now, glue the edges of each of the stapled, folded fans together.  You can either use hot glue or regular craft glue, just make sure you hold until it is dry.  Glue the final edge to make your flower.

    7. Now, glue your letters to the tops of the flower.  In this tutorial, I used the word LOVE, but I have done this with Peace, Joy, Merry... etc.  

    8.  Next glue your flower to your oval.  Make sure the top of the oval is between two points on the flower so you can punch a hole in the oval to hang.

    9.  Next punch a hole in the top of the oval, and thread and tie your ribbon to the oval.  

    10.  Hang and enjoy!