December 6, 2017:


It's COLD here. Cold and windy. But the Sun has been out for the past 2 days so it's bright, and that helps me to bear the cold and the short days. Only 15 more days to Winter Solstice, and then each day, a few more minutes of daylight will magically begin to be added, and even though the cold and snow will continue, the "worst" will be over because I know we are over the hump and headed toward the Spring Equinox.

Meanwhile, I am busy decorating the tree. I dug out an old collage of photos from the former Maison Newton (above). Gosh, that was a beautiful fireplace. My current gel fuel fireplace is great, but no match for that large and lush gas fireplace in my former home. In my case, downsizing meant not only much less square footage and a single story (which IS nice), but no fireplace until I purchased my gel fuel fireplace. I love it, but there was only one wall I could put it on, and this current living room is much smaller than my former living room, so I sized the fireplace accordingly. (It was also much less expensive and did not need to be installed by professionals).

Yesterday I womaned up and muscled, huffed, puffed, cussed some, breathed heavily and heaved mightily to get my Christmas tree up the basement stairs and dragged into the living room, and then into position in front of the picture window overlooking the front of the house. Whew! Quite the work-out. But I wasn't ready this year to switch to a "single woman of a certain age" (4 foot tall) tree. Maybe next year...NAH!


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Potential for a Christmas Craft Project

Hi everyone.

Macy's is having a winter sale -- I opened one of their emails this evening and out of curiosity started looking around.  I came across these two items that I found highly desirable.  They are not exactly my style-- they are rustic and cottage-y or country-ish.  Then again, these days, I've no idea actually, what my style is anymore.  My tastes have changed so much -- but I am constrained by budgetary considerations (few of us aren't, these days) and generally I am still pretty happy with the way my house looks, even if the downstairs powder room is pea-green and purple and hasn't been touched in nearly 10 years, LOL!  Oh, it still has sponging on the walls too!!!  Quel horreurs!

This photograph does not do this wreath justice!  The white frosted branches are covered in a sort of white glittery snow that is just gorgeous on close-up!  This is the Winward Wreath, Twig Cone, Web ID 713770.  I was shocked to see a full retail price on this 17" diameter wreath of $100!  I mean - what????  On sale at 50% off, $50 - plus another 10% - through December 24th, I guess lots of other people agreed with me!  It is made out of wood, polyester, and plastic -- oh, and no doubt lots and lots of Super Glu to (although the description does not mention Super Glu...)

But I'm thinking hmmmm, look at that.  If I had a hot glue gun and some patience (and a supply of branches, and some of that gorgeous glitter, along with some pine cones) -- I COULD MAKE THIS!

Well, I crashed and burned trying to make a simple tied together star out of twigs -- EPIC FAIL!  So what on earth would I be like set loose with a hot glue gun, I ask you.  Oh, my, Goddess.  But I wouldn't pay $45 for this on sale either, cool as it is.  So...

And here is a companion piece, which I equally liked:

This is the Winwood Holiday Candle Holder, Twig Cone Votive, Web ID 713772.  Full price is $90, on sale for $45 plus another 10% off.  Too expensive!  Okay, maybe I'm being a little unfair, because according to the description online, this measures 13" by 13" - so perhaps it's not quite a votive holder?

I can easily visualize the wreath above and the votives on my mantle/mantel...

I know every crafter starts out somewhere, but without some directions, I don't think I can cut creating something like this by myself!

That's not to say, though, that perhaps someone else (or many someone elses) saw these pieces, or something similar, and being braver than I with their glue guns, set to work.  Well, to be fair, I don't own a glue gun, so I can't even pretend to be brave with one...

From Adele's website (

How to make a stick Christmas wreath
2 Dec 2012

An interesting idea - using the old metal coat-hanger forced into a circle trick (what I did last year to make my ornament wreath).  These branches are much longer than the inspiration piece, and it entailed using thin wire to bind the branches on to the metal "frame" to get it to work.  Hot glue probably wouldn't work on this form of stick Christmas wreath.

From the How Stuff Works blog:

Craft Stick Projects
(from late November, 2011 -- maybe I'm blind, but I couldn't find an exact date for the original post).

This website gave me a crucial clue how to start a base and build upon it -- no coat hanger necessary. Well, it uses something like popsicle sticks, but I think the principal is sound -- right? Right?  Think - five sides -- a pentagon!

But maybe an octagon would work better (be larger, in other words...)

Well, I'm tired tonight and I'm watching The Voice Grand Finale -- so if I find something else I'll add it here or do another post.  And I think I have to get me one of those hot glue guns...

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