Monday, April 30, 2012

Lavender Sugar ...

Today I made a batch of lavender sugar ...

So simple and easy to do ...

The kitchen smelled delightful ...

Sugar scented with the delicate fragrance of lavender is ideal in tea,
over berries, and sprinkled on cakes and desserts.

Lavender Sugar Recipe
1 tbsp. lavender buds (organic)
2 cups sugar
Container with a tight fitting lid

Mix lavender buds with sugar and place in a lidded container.  Let stand for a few days, shaking the container occasionally to distribute the lavender among the sugar.  Sift the sugar to remove the lavender heads and store the scented sugar in an airtight container.  You may also grind the lavender if you choose before adding it to your sugar.

Tea time ...

Today I am joining ...

Tea Time Tuesday @ Rose Chintz Cottage
Tea Cup Tuesday @ Martha's Favorites
Tea Cup Tuesday @ Artful Affirmations
Tea Party Tuesday @ Sweetology
Tuesday Cuppa Tea @ Antiques and Teacups
Friends Sharing Tea @ Bernideen's Tea Time
Thursday Favorite Things @ Katherine's Corner
Foodie Friday @ Rattlebridge Farm
Show and Tell Friday @ My Romantic Home

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Sedge Banks

This scenic card was created with only four stamps.  On a piece of glossy white paper I stamped the Sedge Banks and Oaks in Mist in StazOn Olive Green.  The loon was stamped in StazOn Black.

The water was sponged in Bordering Blue, Ballet Blue, Brocade Blue, Tempting Turquoise, Brilliant Blue and Night of Navy (leaving some portions white).

Grassy areas were sponged in Green Galore, Old Olive, Always Artichoke, Distressed Forest Moss, Handsome Hunter and Chocolate Chip.

Because there was so much blue for the water, I didn't want a blue sky so I sponged Barely Banana, So Saffron, Summer Sun, Pumpkin Pie and Pretty in Pink.

ColorBox Frost White was applied to the water to lighten a few areas followed by Sky Blue Shimmerz Paint. 

The inside was stamped with a retirement sentiment and given to a co-worker.  I'm linking with the following blog parties:
Inspire Me Monday @ Create With Joy
Hoo's Got Talent @ Night Owl Crafting

Card Recipe:
Stamps:  Stampscapes Sedge Bank Left, Sedge Bank Right, Oaks in Mist, Loon with Reflection
Paper:  Factory Green, Garden Green, Glossy White
Ink:  Banks - StazOn Olive Green, Loon - StazOn Black; Water - Bordering Blue, Ballet Blue, Brocade Blue, Tempting Turquoise, Brilliant Blue, Night of Navy; Grass - Green Galore, Old Olive, Always Artichoke, Distressed Forest Moss, Handsome Hunter, Chocolate Chip; Sky - Barely Banana, So Saffron, Summer Sun, Pumpkin Pie, Pretty in Pink; ColorBox Frost White
Accessories:  Sky Blue Shimmerz Paint
Techniques:  Sponging
Card Size:  A2 (4.25" x 5.5")

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Wishes ...

"W" is for Wishes ...

This week at Jenny Matlock's Alphabe-Thursday we are studying the letter "W".  Oh, how I love to wish upon a shooting star!  Can we really make wishes come true?  I thought I would share with you today some cute ways to make your wishes come true, now and every day to come (at least that is what they say).

  • If you catch the time on the clock at 11:11 make a wish.
  • If you hear a bird singing in the rain, make a wish.
  • If three birds perch together on one wire, make a wish.  If you finish your wish before any of them fly away, it will come true.
  • If you find an empty bird's nest, you get a wish.  If it has part of an eggshell in it, you get two wishes.
  • At the first sign of a rainbow, make a wish.
  • When you find a four-leaf clover, pick it without breaking off any leaves, make a wish on it, and carry it with you the next 24 hours.  If any leaves break off during these 24 hours, your wish will not come true.

"There wouldn't be a sky full of stars if we were all meant
to wish on the same one."
~ Frances Clark ~

I hope you will join me today in a fun survey about wishes.  Do you have a spell to make wishes come true?  If so, please do tell us your secret in the comments section.

Create your free online surveys with SurveyMonkey, the world's leading questionnaire tool.

Thank you so much for stopping to visit me and I do hope ALL your wishes come true!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Award Thank You's

I would like to thank Carrie at Carrie's Scrapyard and Cynthia over at Cloches and Lavender for presenting me with blog awards.  Carrie graciously passed on the Liebster Blog Award.  This award is presented to blogs with fewer than 200 followers.  Maybe someday I will surpass 200.  Carrie designs wonderful handmade cards and projects, please stop over and check out her blog.

Cynthia passed on the Sunshine Award to me.  Cynthia has a talent for decorating, faux finishing and DIY projects.  I love seeing photos of her home and how she makes everything look so easy!  For decorating tips, please visit her at Cloches and Lavender.

I would like to thank these wonderful ladies for choosing me!  Thank you for your generosity and for taking the time to let me know you like my blog.  I do appreciate all of those who have honored me with an award, but your lovely comments and friendship are enough.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Heart Swans Anniversary

This card was pretty simple to create since the only stamping on the front is the two swans.  I started by cutting a piece of DCWV 'Tis the Season Metallic Paper using the Mega Curved Rectangles #4 Die.  I then cut a piece of Shimmery White paper to layer onto the metallic paper.

The heart swans were stamped in VersaMark and embossed with silver embossing powder and a heat gun.  I used a Copic Powder Blue Marker to create the water then applied Sky Blue Shimmerz Paint.

A Marianne Design Creatables Die was used to create the branch.  After cutting it out with the Big Shot I applied Under the Sea Shimmerz Paint.  These dies are awesome!

I embellished the card with a 5/8" satin ribbon in aqua and added some vanilla rosettes.

The inside was stamped with Happy Anniversary in VersaMark and embossed with silver embossing powder and a heat gun.  I also added a flourish in Soft Sky to compliment the outside of the card.

Pretty swans ...

I hope you had a peaceful weekend.  I will be linking with Make It Monday.

Card Recipe:
Stamps:  PSX Heart Swans (K-1738), The Stamp Pad Co. Flourish (Inside)
Paper:  Floral Embossed White, DCWV 'Tis the Season Metallic Designer Paper, Shimmery White 
Ink:  Swans - VersaMark with Silver EP; Inside Sentiment - VersaMark with Silver EP; Water - Copic Powder Blue Marker; Flourish - Soft Sky 
Accessories:  5/8" Satin Ribbon in Aqua, Sky Blue Shimmerz Paint, Under the Sea Shimmerz Paint, Nesties Mega Curved Rectangles #4, Marianne Design Creatables Garden Branch (LR0151); SU Vanilla Rosettes, Bow-Easy 
Techniques:  Embossing, Sponging 
Card Size:  5.5" x 5.5"

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Titanic CD Winner!

Hi everyone,

I'm so happy it is Saturday, aren't you?  It is time to announce the winner of my Music Aboard the Titanic CD.  The winning # using was 6 - Sharon from Sharon's Sunlit Memories.
Congratulations Sharon, please email me your address using the link on my right sidebar and I will get this great CD in the mail to you.

Thanks to everyone who participated in my giveaway.  I appreciate your comments and do read each and every one of them.  I'm upgrading my PC today so wish me luck!  Hopefully I will be back later with a card for you.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Views ...

"V" is for Views ...

Today Ms. Jenny and her students are studying the letter "V".  So what is your point of view?  Is the glass half empty or half full?

Personally, I really don't care much for this expression, but as a child I think it was inflicted upon me one too many times.  Do you like to be psychoanalysed?  My husband says I am a "glass half empty" kinda gal, but I like to think of myself as a realist.

If I am at a restaurant I consider my water glass to be half empty; however, I'm sure the waiter is thinking it is still half full.  When you think about it does it really matter?  It all depends on how you look at the equation.  Are you an optimist or a pessimist?  I don't like to categorize myself since it all depends on the situation and what mood and mindset I may be in.

"The optimist sees the rose and not its thorns; the pessimist stares at the thorns, oblivious of the rose." ~ Kahlil Gibran

It is such a simple question, but yet we tend to hesitate with our answer.  Whether you are an optimist or a pessimist shouldn't be based on a single thought, but how you live your every day life.  Don't you agree?

I wonder how you see the glass?  Or maybe there isn't any glass at all?  Thank you for stopping to visit me.  I'm linking with Ms. Jenny for Alphabe-Thursday.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Ship of Dreams

Today marks the 100th anniversary of the Titanic.  The sinking of the Titanic is one of the greatest tragedies in history.  Although it has been a century since the infamous luxury liner sank in the Atlantic Ocean do we really know what happened on that fourth night at sea in 1912?

To honor the memory of those lives lost, and of a lifestyle long gone but not forgotten, let us reflect on some fascinating aspects about the tragic history of the Titanic.  The 'Ship of Dreams' sank somewhere in the North Atlantic, south of Newfoundland, Canada after hitting an iceberg.  Some theories suggest that if the ship's crew not attempted to turn the ship in the opposite direction of the iceberg and took the blow head on, the collision would not have resulted in a catastrophic disaster.

There were 2,228 people on board, which included 885 crew members plus Captain Edward Smith.  When the ship sank that early spring morning, the lives of both famous and the unknown were lost forever.  There was such an eclectic mix of passengers on board the ill fated liner.  Of the 2,228 passengers, only 705 survived.  Why were there not enough lifeboats?  The first lifeboat to launch, Lifeboat 7 only carried 24 people, despite having a capacity of 65.  Lifeboat 1 carried the fewest people with only 7 crew members and 5 passengers and it had a capacity for 40.  Did you know there were 9 dogs on board the Titanic and two (a Pomeranian and a Pekinese) were rescued?

A postcard sent from Queenstown by Escott Robert Phillips to his friend Bill Squires.  Phillips was lost when the ship sank, but his 21 year old daughter Alice escaped in Lifeboat 12.

(Source: The Titanic Experience)
click to enlarge

This telegram shows the desperate correspondence between Titanic and Olympic.

(Source: The Titanic Experience)
click to enlarge

I wonder what tea would have been like aboard the Titanic during the Edwardian era.  Imagine stepping onto this luxurious ship and being seated in the tea salon enjoying fine English tea, savory miniature sandwiches, and assorted fancy pastries.

For this special occasion I have brought out my Royal Albert / Paragon Victoriana Rose teacup.  This pretty cup is decorated on both sides with pastel pink roses, green leaves and wispy gray foliage with splendid gold trim.

It has a lovely back stamp from 1966.  I'm sure teacups from 1912 were just as beautiful.

Today I will enjoy a wonderful cup of white rose tea and the heavenly scent of a soft pink rose.

In the book How to Survive the Titanic: The Sinking of J. Bruce Ismay, Frances Wilson has done excellent research about the antecedents and the Edwardian milieu of the White Star Line that built and operated the Titanic.  The author spins a new epic: when the ship hit the iceberg, and one thousand men, lighting their last cigarettes, prepared to die, J. Bruce Ismay, the ship's owner and inheritor jumped into a lifeboat filled with women and children and rowed away to safety.  Her story of the three parts of Bruce Ismay's life paints a wonderful picture of the pre-sinking part, a realistic view of the confusing events during the sinking and the immediate aftermath, and an incomplete story of the remainder of Ismay's life.  The book has many different threads some of which are thought provoking.

The Titanic movie took the world by storm when released in December of 1997. Like so many others, I was captivated by the main characters, Jack Dawson (played by Leonardo DiCaprio) and Rose DeWitt Bukater (played by Kate Winslet) and their love story.

The tragic sinking of the Titanic and history of both those who survived and were lost, will forever be remembered with nostalgia and sadness.

To commemorate this event I will be giving away a Music Aboard the Titanic CD.  This nostalgic CD contains classical and ragtime music from the actual songbooks used by the White Star Line and includes the famous "Nearer My God to Thee," which is the last known song the band played before the Titanic sank below the waves on April 15, 1912.  This music will make you feel as if you're actually on board the Titanic.

If you would like a chance to win this CD just become a follower of my blog and leave a comment on this post with your thoughts about the Titanic.  You have until midnight on Friday, April 20, 2012 to enter.  I will select the winner on Saturday, April 21, 2012 using  Good luck!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Weekend Plans

Happy Friday the 13th!

I've finally come to the realization I live for the weekend.  It seems to be the only time lately I can complete any projects.  Saturday is going to be a full day as one of my favorite clothing stores has come to town and they are having a "Grand Opening" event.  So I can't miss the opportunity to check it out and possibly pick up a little something on sale.

I also have some DIY projects I would like to work on if the weather cooperates.  There are cards sitting on my project table to be finished and orders waiting.  Some weeks just seem like a blur ... where does the time go?

Lately I've been thinking about opening up a shop on Etsy, but do I have the time?  Can I really manage it all?  For now, I think I will take some Advil and get ready for the weekend.

I will leave you today with this picture of my Magnolia tree.  Please be sure to stop back on Sunday for my special "Tea on the Titanic" post and giveaway.   

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Up Up & Away ...

Up Up & Away ...

(Photo Source:  Leaflette)

Many years ago I had the pleasure of riding in a hot air balloon.  As a young girl, it was an exciting and exhilarating experience!  Few things compare to the thrill.

It is an amazing feeling being airborne in a beautifully colored balloon.  The air is completely silent and oh so peaceful.  You literally feel as though you are floating.  Riding in a balloon allows you to experience a new found freedom totally unlike any other aerial adventure.  The view looking down from the balloon is breathtaking.

(Photo Source:  Leaflette)

There's something incredibly adventurous about having the course of your travels charted by the wind as you skim above trees and rooftops as if in a dream.

"The balloon seems to stand still in the air while the earth flies past underneath." ~ Alberto Santos-Dumont

Can you imagine yourself floating effortlessly across the countryside?  Does the thought of being up so high in a basket unnerve you?

Monday, April 9, 2012

Tulips & Tea

I have some fresh tulips from my garden to share with you today.  I just love pink and purple flowers!  Tulips, always make me think of clogs and windmills.  Of course, tulips don't have the vibrant scent like roses, but they do have their own unique style of splendor.

A blossoms basket filled with purple tulips.

So soft and elegant ...

Although different tulip colors carry distinct meanings - yellow tulips symbolizing cheerful thoughts, white conveying forgiveness and purple representing royalty - a Turkish legend may be responsible for the red tulip's symbolism.  The story goes that a prince named Farhad was love struck by a maiden named Shirin.  When Farhad learned that Shirin had been killed, he was so overcome with grief that he killed himself - riding his horse over the edge of a cliff.  It's said that a scarlet tulip sprang up from each droplet of his blood, giving the red tulip the meaning "perfect love."

I'm enjoying tea on the patio with my Royal Albert "Prairie Crocus" teacup.  This cup is one of my favorites with its lavish gold gilt. 

An airy trellis basket with an open weave transports tulips to the kitchen.

"Grow what you love.  The love will keep it growing."
 ~ Emilie Barnes ~

Thank you to our wonderful hostesses.  Please be sure to stop back next week for my special "Tea on the Titanic" post and giveaway.  I am linking this week with the following ladies:

Tea Time Tuesday @ Rose Chintz Cottage
Tuesday Cuppa Tea @ Antiques and Teacups
Tea Cup Tuesday @ Martha's Favorites
Tea Cup Tuesday @ Artful Affirmations
Friends Sharing Tea @ Bernideen's Tea Time Blog
Bloomin' Tuesday @ Ms. Green Thumb Jean
Garden Tuesday @ Sidewalk Shoes
Tuesday Garden Party @ An Oregon Cottage

Teacup & Saucer:  Royal Albert "Prairie Crocus"
Baskets:  Longaberger Blossoms w/Garden Vine Liner & Trellis Hurricane in Washed Linen Stain
Lace Linen:  Antique Shop

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