Christmas Countdown!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Beautiful Christmas Gift Cards


I love the designs by Graphic 45, and would love to share this video link with you. I think you'll agree, it's a gorgeous design! Wouldn't it be fun to tuck a gift card for that "hard to buy person" on your list into a card like this? They could save the card to use as a Christmas decoration each year. Check out the video to make it at:  Graphic 45 card

I believe this line is called "Nutcracker Sweet."

You could tuck a photo of the grandkids with Santa in the pocket--behind that little decorated Christmas tree--and grandma and grandpa wouldn't need or want anything else!

Graphic 45 makes the project coordinate so beautifully.

The designs above and below are by a designer named Gloria. You can see  Gloria's beautiful designs here.

The box above is an 8 x 8 inch box she is going to use to present some homemade cookies or fudge to a friend. Notice the "foody" words on the red paper. Again, this is another gift that would go on living at my house. It would make a fun holder for a small scrapbook album of the kids Christmas' over the years.

Gloria even made a card just for the Rudolph lovers!

I think I'm headed off to my craft room to see what I can put together.
Till next time, Christmas blessings to you and yours,

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Rudy Day Fun

Happy November Rudolph day, friends!

My friend Sandra and I decided to have a little crafty fun and make some Christmas cards. We're not sure if we're going to keep them for our own decorations or mail them out!

We made 2 identical cards, one to keep for ourself and one to share. This was a kit I bought from's by Anna Griffin, who can do no wrong.

The designs included plain cards and envelopes, background papers, the designs such as Stocking, santa, snowman, etc, stickers and some of the ribbons. I had a few ribbons of my own to include, such as the red/green plaid. Also included are the verses written on inserts for the inside of the card.

They're very easy and fun to do. All you need to add is the tape runner.

There's our boy, Rudy! Smack in the middle of all the fun. It was a fun activity to share with my friend Sandra (on the right, in the black/ivory/gold sweater). That's me on the left in the red sweater, in my craft room.

We had a chicken salad lunch and spent the day together. Next time let's put on the Christmas music, ok Sandra?!

Please also read my previous post for a give away.

'Till next time, may all your days be merry and bright!

Friday, November 23, 2012


I cleaned out the drawer where I keep my Christmas books and magazines, and I discovered a few duplicates which I would like to give away.

The first give-away consists of 2 magazines: the November-December 2010 issue of Sandra Lee's Semi-Homemade (I miss that magazine, do you?). It has about 60 recipes, from cocktails, appetizers, mains, sides, and of course, sweets. And of course, it has the gorgeous photos and time-saving tips Sandra is known for. The second magazine is the November-December 2009 issue of Southern Lady magazine. It only has about 18 recipes, but I think you'll agree the beautiful ads in the magazine are even fun. There are several tablescapes featured, including a darling one set for the children.

The second give-away is the book "The Farm Chicks Christmas." If you love vintage 1950's, you'll really enjoy this book. Serena Thompson--perhaps you remember her from Country Living magazine--takes you to her home decorated for Christmas and the homes of 3 of her friends. While she does include some recipes, this is not a cookbook. I guess they call it a "lifestyle" book. It has vintage decorating and craft ideas. I've included a few photos below to show you some interior pages.

If you would like to be included in the drawing for these 2 give-aways, you need to do 2 things: leave me a comment and tell me about one of your favorite Christmas blogs or websites (mine and yours excluded!) and leave me your email address.

I'll leave the give-away open for comments until December 1, so spread the word.

I'll have another post for November "Rudy Day" Saturday or Sunday. Thanks for stopping by, and may you and yours be blessed this Christmas season.

Till next time!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Christmas Baking

I'm thinking ahead to one of my favorite Christmas activities---
baking cookies. I'd like to try a few different things this year:

Peppermint Shortbread Cookies
Something chocolatey
Cranberry White Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies
Spritz Cookies (with red or green sprinkles)

Creamy Mocha Fudge and
Peppermint Bark

Homemade Peppermint Bark
  • 6 ounces of semi sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 6 ounces of white chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup crushed candy canes
  • 9" baking sheet
  • aluminum foil

  1. Line the bottom and sides of your baking sheet with foil; smooth out any wrinkles
  2. Melt the semi sweet chocolate and 1 teaspoon of the oil in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water.
  3. Immediately pour the melted chocolate into the prepared pan; spread the chocolate out with a spatula (or tilt the pan) to even it out after pouring it onto the pan.
  4. Place the pan into the fridge for about 30 minutes, or until the chocolate has set.
  5. Next, melt the white chocolate and remaining 1 teaspoon of oil, as you did with the semi sweet chocolate.
  6. Immediately pour the white chocolate over the set, semi sweet chocolate, and spread it out evenly.
  7. Sprinkle the crushed candy cane evenly over top of the white chocolate. 
  8. Place the pan back into the fridge for another 30 minutes, or until the chocolate is set.
  9. Once set, you can remove the bark from the pan by lifting the foil.
  10. Break the bark into small, irregular pieces.  The bark can be stored in an air tight container in the fridge up to 2 weeks; makes 25 pieces.
Till next time, Christmas blessings to you and yours,

Friday, October 19, 2012

Christmas Countdown begins Sunday!

Organized Christmas will be starting their Cristmas countdown on Sunday, October 21. (It's actually 67 days from today!) You'll want to bookmark or subscribe to their page. It will help you get your holiday season under control!

What's more fun than making a gingerbread house?
Making 5 of them!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

September Rudy Day

I haven't done anything Christmasy in awhile, so I thought I would post a little Christmas quilt show for you! Who can resist these happy penguins?!

I love reindeer, too. Here are some of Rudy's cute relatives!

Marla made all of us a red and white pincushion last Christmas. She was influenced by the red and white quilt exhibit in New York City during the year. Lucky Marla even got to see it! She said it was incredible.

 Here's Pam and her Elm Creek quilt.

Cute Santas, and the quilt below is called "Snowbound" by Gerry Kimmel of Red Wagon.

A Christmas tree made of green scrappy squares.

A Christmas sampler

This quilt is one of my projects. It's called "Christmas Lights" and was done as a Bonnie Hunter mystery project. See her wonderful website at

I hope you enjoyed my little Christmas quilt show. It's also time for you to check out to get started on your Christmas plans.

Till next time, Christmas blessings to you and yours,

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Christmas in July - #4

Did you catch Christmas in July on QVC today? I couldn't resist the Jim Shore Sleigh Basket with 4 ornaments. I have a few other Jim Shore items--the nativity and 3 angels. As a quilter, I just love his stuff! So this will be featured in my Christmas decorations this year.

If you're looking for an easy project to whip up for a gift or for yourself, how about a nice tablerunner? This one was easy, very Christmasy, and simple enough that whatever I put on it will be the centerpoint.

And for some reason, I haven't put up my little Dept. 56 Christmas Village in awhile, so it was fun to bring it out this past December. I  love my little white birch trees, but I think I'd like to add some evergreen trees this year.

They had the cutest snowman cookie jar for sale on QVC today, but I'm holding out for one that looks like a gingerbread house. This one was available last year at Dillards and Target. I wonder if I'll be able to find something similar this year?!

I hope you're enjoying your Christmas in July. I've really enjoyed reading some of the Christmas blogs out there. You all are so creative! (I need to drink more frozen lemonade so I can save the tops to make ornaments!)

Till next time, Christmas blessings to you and yours!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Crafty Christmas Cards

This may sound like a blatant advertisement, but I am having so much fun with the Cardmakers monthly card-making kit from Paper Wishes that I have to show you some of the cards I have made with the materials they send me each month. Once a month they send me 10 blank cards, 10 envelopes, a 6-page colored instruction sheet, papers, trims...everything except the glue and tape. I've also bought a special kit with only Christmas cards in it.

See the cute shaped card on the left? Instructions for this card and 120 others are available on the CD.

You can't really see the dimension on these cards (below), but this is a technique called "paper toile" where there are 4 or 5 layers to the cover design. You simply punch out the artwork pieces and layer them with dimensional foam tape.

I'm looking forward to December decorating...I'm going to hang some of these cards from a clothesline across my mantel or stairway.

Rudolph and Clarice say hello! We hope you are enjoying your Christmas in July fun. And till next time, holiday blessings to you and yours!


Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Colonial Williamsburg Christmas

One of our favorite places to visit is Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia. We love it so much, it was instrumental in our decision to leave St. Louis, Missouri and make Virginia our home. Of course, having our 2 sons, 2 daughters-in-law and 2 grandchildren in Virginia might have had an even bigger role in our decision to move east!

One year all the kids went out of town for Christmas, so hubby and I went to Williamsburg to spend some time. Each year CW has a door wreath decorating contest. All the materials used in their outdoor decorations must be natural. We enjoyed snapping some photos, talking with some of the costumed interpreters and just looking at the gorgeous architecture. These are some of our favorite wreaths.

We could not resist getting a photo of the dog in the cart, with the dog pulling the cart! So cute!

This darling couple spent the day talking with visitors and sharing some local customs.

We enjoy seeing the animals out and about too!

This is my interpretration of a Colonial Williamsburg door wreath! I used all natural silk flowers (ha!) and a folk-art inspired Santa.

My china is called "Liberty Blue" and was introduced during the bicentennial (1976). Hubby and I have purchased it a piece at a time at antique stores during our vacation travels. The glassware is from Colonial Williamsburg, as are the berry napkin rings. 

My CW Byers Carolers collection. My favorites are the ladies in their toile dresses.

That's a CW paint color on the fireplace, and homemade stockings. The greenery has little lights and wooden berries that look like cranberries. Our cat would eat the real thing, so that's a no-no.

My little Santa collection makes me smile. Here they are in the dining room near the stairway with more stockings for Santa to fill!

I hope you've enjoyed a little peak into my world. And till next time, holiay blessings to you and yours!