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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Every year for the last 27 years a group of our friends get together to have a Progressive Dinner. This year was no different. We always select a theme and this year it was "A Woodland Christmas". Decorations followed that theme as well. Our menu consisted of pheasant and venison and they were delicious.

The dishes even followed our theme. Between us we often have enough place settings, chargers, dishes, silver, etc. to have beautiful tables. Our hostess' tree even followed our theme. Her husband is a hunter and so that was our source for our meat and all the pheasant feathers you see.

Our dessert was a Yule Log. Notice the small plate next to it - egg white mushrooms! Don't we have some creative people? It was alot of fun to plan and participate in. Good times with great friends!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Christmas Creations

I've been busy for the past month and have neglected my blogging. I did want to participate in Kathy's Cottage's Christmas though. I have visited Mary Carol Garrity's home in the past month and loved what she did on her front door - so I copied it (sort of). I did pay full price for the lantern but the rest I had left-over from Christmases past. Nell Hill's in Atchison, Kansas is the shop that Mary Carol Garrity owns and she also lives in Atchison. You may have read her decorating books.

I also received left-over bay leaves from our Master Gardener Herb Day last May and so I made two little bay trees to use in my Christmas decor this year. This is on my living room mantle.

Another purchase was this lantern from a shop called Gatherings on the Prairie in Junction City, Kansas. I made the tray it's sitting on from an old cabinet door I bought for $.50 at a garage sale (added some knob feet, paint, and some old window handles). The rest I created from leftovers from Christmases past.
Be sure to visit the other Christmas fans at Kathy's for ideas for Christmas.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Fertilizer Friday - Fall Glory

This Fall has been a good season. Here in Kansas our Falls are unpredictable. Last year it was a yellow and brown Fall. This year we have brilliant reds, oranges, and "almost" hot pinks in the leaves. These are all trees from our yard that we have planted. We have had just the right amount of moisture and the frost has stayed away. This week though, the wind moved in and so our beautiful trees are losing their color swiftly.
The above trees are Japanese maples that have been gorgeous to the eye.

Sweetspire looks so pretty next to the weeping evergreen.

The Burning Bush is always a brilliant red. The above is an Autumn Blaze Maple that is so pretty this year.

Here is a cherry that is a burgundy color mixed with a brilliant red.
Be sure to drop by Tootsie's place to see what is going on for Fall around the country.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Beautiful Tables

Our church women sponsored a brunch with "table viewings" to benefit missions. We had 22 tables decorated with a lot of different themes. There were so many beautiful tables. My pictures don't do them the justice they deserve.

How about a Coca-Cola theme?

I loved these dishes -brown transferware with the turkeys in flight.

My friend Sharron did the table above. Her tablecloth was made of burlap with a dark brown velvet trim. Sharron always goes "over the top". Look how she decorated the folding chairs around her table.

Lots of Fall themes. Look at those little pumpkin placecard holders.

There were several Christmas and winter tables too. I liked the red and blue together.

I loved these dishes with the birds on them. These were made by Lenox.

I loved the sunflowers with the black and white. It was a gorgeous table.

I loved this apple themed table too. It really picked up the red in the dishes.

Join others and their "tablescapes" at Between Naps on the Porch for Tablescape Thursday. You'll see some more beautiful table settings!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Fertilizer Friday - Plants Come In

Here is one of my tropical palms that likes it outside and like Tootsie - my spider plant dropped seeds in this pot a few years ago and now I have a big spider plant in here as well. Notice I'm using my new columns ("new" to me anyway).
I've been moving my plants inside for the past week as the temperature drops here in Kansas. Plants have done really well outside over the summer and I've had to split some to bring them in. I'm hoping they do well over the winter.
I've brought in a couple of geraniums and will bring more in to over-winter later. They can stand the cold pretty well for a while. I hate to strip the yard completely so early.
Here is my "trouble" over the winter and through the growing season. She simply disregards any attempts to keep her out of my yard and from eating my plants. She always has a couple of babies with her and one or two of her lady friends.
Drop by Tootsie's today and check out Fertilizer Friday.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

New Read for Ladies With Books

It's been a while since I've posted about any "good reads" I've experienced. Our book club recently read The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. This book was written by Mary Ann Shaffer and finished by her niece, Annie Barrows. This is a book that enlightened me about the German occupation in WWII of the English Channel island of Guernsey. I did not know anything about this particular part of the history of WWII. This is a book about relationships of the people on this island as well as the story of the writer who comes to write a book about them. I thoroughly enjoyed it. The format of the book is different as it is written as letters between people. Once the reader gets involved in the story, that becomes less distracting.

It is our usual habit in our book club of using the books we read for hints at the refreshments we should have. Sharron selected this book but after reading about "Potato Peel Pie" she decided we would not care for refreshments such as that. So, she did choose to fix a potato pie - sweet potatoe pie with a praline concoction as a layer next to the pie crust. Oh, and she served it with "real" whipped cream. Was it ever good!

I would encourage you to choose this book sometime to read.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

It Would Be Fall to You All

Be sure to drop by Southern Hospitality to see the multitudes of ideas for Fall decorating that could inspire you in your own home.
It's difficult to take a good picture of a cloche without getting reflections off it.
Here's a fruit bowl, a glass container of pumpkins and assorted gourds with an amber sitting hen.

A picture from the early 20th century of a great-great aunt of mine with an arrangement in an urn.

A Fall grouping in a birdcage.

The kitchen table has a Fall arrangement as well.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Thrifty Finds - Cloches in the making

What can one make from some bubbly glass shades from an old light fixture, washers, and old cabinet knobs? I made two glass cloches from them. I found the glass shades at GW for $1 for both of them.
I was trying to figure out how to put some kind of knob on them when DH thought up the idea of using a washer painted white glued to the top of the shade and then glue the knob on top of that.

"Brilliant", I thought. I used a plate I already had and a candle holder I had in stock for one. For the other I bought a glass plate at GW for $.50 and gave the cloche and plate to a friend. The pictures distort the bubbles in the glass a little. They actually are clearer than that. I like the bubbles in the glass though. It is reminiscent of old-time glass. I was pleased with the way they turned out.
Please take a look over at Southern Hospitality for Today's Thrifty Treasures. People are finding "economical" treasures everywhere!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Thrify Treasures - Chippy and More

This was a good weekend for me and garage sales. These are the three "big" purchases I was most proud of. I made some smaller purchases which may be mentioned in a later post. This arrangement with the pheasant feathers was only $8 - anyone tried to buy real pheasant feathers lately?
I'm debating with myself about painting the chippy magazine stand. This is old - see the decal on the side.
The chippy white column is one of two that I got. The other one is taller and needs some rotten wood taken off but I like them!
Be sure to stop by Rhoda's at Southern Hospitality for the other thrifty shoppers to see what they've acquired.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Fertilizer Friday - Fall Blooms

The leaves have started to fall - certainly seems to me there are alot more falling earlier this year. The mums and grasses are in their glory.
Lantana really likes the weather we're having. It's been plenty wet and today the sun is shining.

Painter's Palette puts on these tiny red seeds in the Fall. I have this variegated shades of green but I also have a white and green that grows in the shade with the tiny red seeds.

The marigolds, orange zinnias, and mums fill this border in nicely for Fall. From the street, it's bright and welcomes Fall.
Be sure to bop on over to Tootsie's for Fertilizer Friday and see the Fall blooms in yards all over.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

2nd Time Around Rain Barrel

Second Time Around Tuesday seemed right for my activity this weekend. My friend, Diane (in the burgundy t-shirt), is a Master Gardener with me. She always gives 100% to any project she gets in her head. She was having trouble in her yard with "flooding" and she had tried everything to get it in control to no avail. Her final solution was to create a rain garden and to make her own rain barrels to use. She is now giving workshops on making rain barrels. My husband and I help her, as well as some other MGs. This is the rain barrel workshop she gave at our local Botanica, the Wichita Gardens this last Sunday. 28 rain barrels were made from cast off barrels from the Pepsi company. Diane has several in her yard and has them painted with cute flowers, etc. You would know I don't have the picture to show you of the finished product. This week 28 rain barrels were made. The workshop she had in the Spring had 40 made. Interest is big.

Each participant did as much of the work themselves as possible. We provided guidance and tools.

Be sure to drop by A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words to see what everyone else is doing to recycle things just like Diane as done with the empty barrels from Pepsi.