Monday, September 29, 2014

Months ago, I visited a DIY blog and I remembered something that impressed me.

On the site, the blogger admired elegant glass hurricane lamps that she saw at the "Williams
and Sonoma" store.  Truly, they were beautiful!  Being the creative person that she is, she
copied them in a dollar store fashion:).
The blog where I found this creativity, was...
Scroll down through Melissa's gallery and you will find these lamps, along with many
other lovely projects that she created.

Fast forward to last week, when I visited the Dollar Tree store, and decided to copy the
idea, because I wanted a Fall centerpiece for my table.  This idea is so simple and most
inexpensive, and can be adapted to whatever you want it to be.

Two clear glass cylinders.  Two clear glass candle holders.

Some strong glass glue.  I used what I had, E-6000 clear transparent glue.  On the DIY blog,
she used a glue gun. 
I glued the rim of the candle holder and then positioned the glass cylinder to it.  I let it set
for24 hours to make sure the glue was dry.

I took two of my tall thin water glasses and set them inside
the cylinder.  I added a small white votive candle.
Then, to decorate the hurricane lamps, I slid some faux leaves, and
some leaves from the tree out front, to the inside space.
The pack of leaf napkins were also purchased at the Dollar Tree,
and will look nice with the candles.

I do think these hurricane lamps would make a special gift for someone too.

When the Fall season is over, I will find other ways to decorate these hurricane lamps.  The
pictures don't really show the beauty of these simple pieces, especially when the candles
are lit.  Some ideas I have for changing them...sliding ferns, or faux snowflakes, or fine
evergreen branches, or faux pansies for Spring, into the space between the glass and
the cylinder. The list is endless.

Oh, and while I was a the Dollar Tree, I found these pretty, jewel toned votive
holders, and purchased a few of them to set on my kitchen room divider shelf.

On this Monday, I thought I would share my fun dollar store purchases.  I am also thankful
for bloggers like Melissa at 320 Sycamore blog, for sharing her ideas and for inspiring me
to make fun changes in my own home, via dollar store excursions:)

Today is "National Coffee Day", a favorite day in my book:) 

Thank you for stopping here! 

Sunday, September 28, 2014


Don't we all need to take more time to see the beauty around us?  It seems to me, that my focus
needs to be readjusted constantly.

"The miracles of nature, do not seem miracles because they are so common. If no one
had ever seen a flower, even a dandelion would be the most startling event in the world."
~author unknown

Fortunately, nature has been putting on some of it's loveliest displays this past week.  Yesterday I visited another small, yet thriving country greenhouse. I captured the brilliant colors and textures of it all...including the one last rose of summer.

There is not much in the realm of "beauty" in world news lately.  How easy it is to focus on the "ugly" in it all. 
Fear seems to be front and center lately, causing one's hearts to feel unsettled and somewhat

When fear captures my heart, I find myself going to the book of Psalms.
There I read this verse..."The Lord is my light and my salvation-whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the STRONGHOLD of my life-of whom shall I be afraid?"  Psalms 27:1
A "stronghold" seems to be more than sufficient to me, especially in light of
the sights I took in during our recent cycle trip.

Blessings to each one of you!  Your visits, too, mean so much to me.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

..............a few of our adventures, this past weekend.  Yes, we visited farms again.  That is where the grandchildren request to go, and would spend more hours there if time allowed.

Simple, natural beauty and intrigue are found on the grounds, and they loved inspecting it all.

I read a quote on a blog recently, and found myself copying it down, because of it's
thought provoking truths.

"Do not ask your children to strive for extraordinary lives.  Such striving is admirable,
but it is the way of foolishness.  Help them instead to find the wonder and the marvel
of an ordinary life.  Show them the joy of tasting tomatoes, apples, and pears.  Show
them how to cry when pets and people die.  Show them the infinite pleasure in the
touch of a hand.  And make the ordinary come alive for them.  The extraordinary will
take care of itself."   ~William Martin

  The "snake gourds".  You can imagine how interesting the little ones found these gourds to be.

The "goose gourds and the egg gourds".  A lady picked up these three pieces to use as a
centerpiece for the baby shower that she was hosting on Sunday.  I thought it was a cute
idea, using a colorful pink or blue ribbon or two. 

The cabbage plants with their unique and delicate designs.

Here are the three things I chose from the farm, for my front porch display.  The huge fern
continues to grow rapidly, as it has throughout the summer.  The brass pot was a wedding gift
to us, almost forty years ago.  The green pot, was a clearance find at the Dollar General Store:).

The second farm visit came on Saturday afternoon.  Once again, the twenty five cent feeding, brought the animals running.


Running...and almost right up onto the wooden deck.  I like this picture!  I want to title
it, "mutual admiration".

The turkey did not seem happy.  I think he knows that "Thanksgiving day" is coming soon.

I also found it difficult to believe, that at the end of September, this farm's flowers were still in
full bloom.  Certainly, those that tend them possess a magic touch.

Although some of them were showing their "end of the season" look, the beauty of it all
remained for us to enjoy.

We could not help but smell the aroma of freshly baked soft pretzels, and it was fun sharing one, hot from the oven.

Along with some soft cheese to dip it into. 

Like the quote above says, we were making the ordinary come alive for them, in a simple,
country farm visit.

We have these little ones for such a short time.  What a blessing it is to share the "wonder" of
everyday life with them.

Wishing you some moments of your own, that cause you to "wonder and marvel" in the
ordinary of this brilliantly colored, Fall season.

Monday, September 22, 2014

It was noon time and we were hungry.  We came to the small, quiet town of Villa Grove, CO,
and stopped at the General Store and Café, for our lunch.  Immediately upon pulling into the
stone covered parking lot, we knew we were in for an unique experience.

We sent our two trustworthy scouts into check out the place and let us know if the
recommendations that we had been given, were indeed true.

The fact that a young man was fast asleep, on the bench in front of the store, was the first hint
to us, that we indeed were in for memorable lunch experience.  The fact that this building
has operated as a General Store since the 1800s, made us more curious than ever, as we
anticipated eating our lunch here.

Before entering the side door of the cafe', we explored the flower laden back
porch of the establishment.  Homemade musical instruments lined the porch, all
painted black and white.  One could tell right away, that those who operated this
café, put love and care into tending the cozy porch. 

Upon entering the Cafe', we discovered décor that took us all back, to
another time and era, with the brightly painted walls, and the soft country music
pouring through the place.  Artwork filled the walls, and the aroma of good
food, welcomed us.

We each found ourselves reading this poster on the side wall.  It resonated with our hearts,
and some of us took pictures of it, so that we could remember it's valuable advice.

The owner's wife greeted us warmly, with a type of hospitality that a group
of hungry bikers longed for.  Not only did she extend kind, gracious western
hospitality, but she too, cooked the food that was ordered from the menu.
Even the finest of restaurants could not produce such delicious tasting tomato bisque as this dear
lady did!  Truly, the best of ways to eat hometown cooking, on a Monday afternoon in CO!

When we inquired about the marimba sitting behind our table, she offered to play it for us. 
What a gifted lady! 

In the small, glass front cabinet, the most scrumptious looking coconut cream pie caught our
attention.  For a brief moment, we thought of ignoring it, but then on second thought, we
ordered one slice, and four forks.  The rest is but a pleasant memory.  The pie was amazing!
Another talent of our newly found friend:)

As we pulled out of the parking lot, back on our journey again, I could not help but reflect on
the husband and wife we met, and how their gracious, and welcoming personalities, truly made
a difference in our day.   A general store, operating since the 1800s, now was etched in each of
our minds as a very special memory.  It helped me realize that, on a trip like we were on,
kindness continues to create lasting impressions.  We found this to be true throughout our
entire trip, upon meeting up with the nicest, caring people.

Our next meal stop...........Crested Butte, CO. 

And, once again, our server at the pizza restaurant created another fun memory for the eight of us. 

It is Monday morning.  Another week is on the horizon.  May I remind you, if you happen
to operate a restaurant or café in any town of America...... just remember, no matter how tired
you may feel of your job, or how mundane your duties may seem, there are people
like us, who might walk in the door today. And YOU truly can make a difference for them.
When each of us think back to the food establishments we ate at, we remember the
people we met, who made our visit so memorable.

Thanks so much for stopping by.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Needed...two gifts.

Two clear canning jars, from the box in the attic.  Washed and dried thoroughly.  Topped with
green lids, from the box I purchased recently at K Mart.

Used two white gumballs from a bag purchased at Target, in the craft section.

Hot glued each one to the green lids.  I see from the picture, that it was not done neatly:).

Discovered a new snack mix from the hundreds on the Internet.  This one got my husband's votes.
In fact, he is having a bit of trouble walking past the tightly covered plastic container, sitting in
pantry shelf.

"Sweet and Salty Caramel Snack Mix" posted by Kate@OurBestBites, recipe adapted from
Southern Living.  Recipe can be found here...

Three simple steps, and then a while to cool... 

...make one big portion, which can mean extra gifts or many snacking times for those in your
family.  One jar of this went to our daughter as a hostess gift.  A few hours later, she sent me
a picture of the empty jar, with the statement, "I think it is safe to say, "we loved it!"

Another simple gift idea from me.  Your friends will love you! 

Thank you for stopping by. 


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