Thursday, April 21, 2011

Easter Cookies |

I just finished making these Sugar Cookies to take home for Easter.

I love the fun colours and used 'Easter candy corn' for the flower petals and 'Easter m&ms' for the flower centres.

They look really cute, hopefully they taste yummy too!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

On the Table Tonight | Sweet and Sour Pork Chops

It is cooking right now and smells so good!

Very easy to make!

Recipe Here

DIY Pillow Covers |

I had purchased some pillows from Walmart when we first got out house. I thought they would match the colour scheme of the house, but once we got everything painted and decorated they really didn't match well! The style didn't compliment the design / feel of our living room either, and on top of all this the seems in the pillows were starting to fall apart!!

So I decide to 'up-cycle' and make pillow covers to put over top of the old pillows, using them as the 'pillow form' instead of buying new pillow forms.

I got the fabric at Fabricland and it was 40% off!! The colours of the stripes on the fabric match our wall colours perfectly. The yellow stripe is the exact colour of our living room walls, the brown ties in nicely with out couch colour and accents in the room, and the red stripe is the same colour as our dinning room (which is right across the hall).

The fabric is linen and so it goes a lot better with the casual / rustic / cozy style of our living room's decor!

I followed the tutorial below when making my 'Envelope' style pillow covers:

Here is what the old pillows looked like:

And here they are with the new pillow covers on them:

Easter Greetings | What Easter Means To Me

Last year I used antique Easter Greetings to make cards for friends and family!
I just LOVE the beautiful images on these antique cards and I even found some that matched the personalities of the people I was giving the cards too.
Below are some of the images I used on the cards - I simply printed them out on card stalk and then glued them to the front of greeting cards.

The message I placed inside the card was:

"May the true meaning of Easter

fill you with: Gratitude, Purpose & Hope."

The reason I put this message inside each card is because Easter for me...

- Fills me with gratitude for what Jesus did for us, the event we commemorate on this holiday, his crucifixion and resurrection.

- It also fills me with purpose to share the gospel telling others about the price he paid for our salvation, healing and peace.

- And finally it fills me with hope because we know we have salvation through him and that we will one day be with him in heaven.

I used this vintage greeting to make a card for my dad since he likes old trucks.

I used this image for my mom's card because she loves Daffodils.

I gave this one to my husband's grandparents.

I used this one for my husband's family.

I used this image for my brother's card.

I used this image for my grandma as she has a painting just like it, and it reminded me of her when she was a little girl helping on the farm.

I gave this card to my husband as it has a 'couple' / honeymoon feel to it.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Cute Kid / Baby Hoodies |

I came across these adorable children's hoodies on Etsy today!

Thought I would do a little preview on my blog and direct you to 'Penny's Stitches' Etsy Shop.

These sweaters are so cute for any time of the year! They could even be worn as Halloween outfits.

Check out more cute hoodie options in the shop: 'Penny's Stitches'

You can even buy the patterns to crochet your own hoodies in Penny's Shop!

On The Table Tonight |

Pesto Chicken and Sweet Potato Bake

Trying something new tonight - Hope it is yummy!

Recipe HERE

DIY Outdoor Pillows |

I have been on the search for outdoor pillows for a few weeks now.

I wanted pillows for on our new Muskoka chairs that we got for our back porch.
I also wanted the pillows to be green, to match our 'Green Party' that is coming up, and I wanted them to have a nice pattern to them as well (as apposed to plain green or simple stripes).

I was either finding really expensive outdoor pillows ($40 per pillow!!) or plain green pillows with basic stripes on them.

SO when I came across this gorgeous outdoor fabric at Fabricland I thought "Why don't I just make my own?"

It helped too that Fabricland is having a 'Birthday Sale' and all of their regular priced fabric is %40 off.
The pillow forms were also %40 off!

So I ended up getting 1meter of fabric (enough for two 16x16 pillows) for only $8.40 and then I got the two 16x16 pillow forms for only $11.39.

There was also enough fabric left over to make a table runner for our patio table - so now I will have a matching patio set.

So for $19.79 I got two really nice outdoor pillows and a table runner to match!

They only took me about 1 hour to make and I followed the 'Envelope Style Pillow Cover' method that I found on Youtube (tutorial below).

Here are how my pillows and table runner turned out:

The Table Runner:

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Easter Bark |

This year for Easter I am making 'Easter Bark' to take home as a treat for the family.

It is SO simple to make and so yummy to eat
It also looks really cute too:

- Choose several colours of chocolate wafers from the Bulk Barn
* Yeild: About 15 wafers of 3 different colours will make one batch which equals a cookie sheet size or approx 12 pieces of bark

- Melt each colour one at a time in the microwave.

- Line a baking sheet with wax paper and spoon out the melted chocolate into various areas of the pan (i.e. separate the one colour onto several areas of the pan so that it is not all in one spot - this will make it easier to swirl the colours together and will make it look prettier).

- Once you have poured each colour onto the pan tap the pan on the counter top to draw all the colours together (and to get the air bubbles out).

- With a toothpick or a knife swirl the colours together in a pretty pattern.

- Drop in Easter coloured smarties, or mini eggs etc. for an added treat.

- Cool in fridge for 10mins or until firm.

- Break the bark apart into small pieces.

- Ready to serve - the chocolate pieces look cute displayed in a egg carton with some basket stuffing or in an Easter basket.

Photos of how mine turned out:

Chocolate still hot, swirled together with smarties thrown in:
Bark after it has been in the fridge for ten minuets:
Pieces of the bark broken up:
Bark displayed in an egg carton with green basket stuffing:

I am going to be making another batch with yellow mixed in too!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Cottage Memories |

Just a personal post today to 'store' this slide show that I complied of cottage memories from 2007-2010.

You are welcome to check it out if you are interested!

I just love Animoto's slide show templates! This 'Water' template is a perfect theme for the cottage photos!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Creative Women On A Budget | Main Post

I decided I wanted to do a post series on Creative Women who make fabulous items on a BUDGET !!

There are so many talented DIY ladies out there who have done some amazing projects on a budget who don't necessarily have the time to "BIY" (Blog it Yourself).

So I wanted to take the time to feature some of these creative women to inspire my blog readers with even more creative and inexpensive projects!

Here are a few of the posts so far...
Be the next on this list as it grows with more projects coming in!

"Creative Crafter" | Sarah Cashin

"Creative Mommy" | Janine Costello

"Creative Business Women" | Carolyn Hayes

"Creative Bride" | Lauren Brown

"Creative Quilter" | Debbie Lindsay

Creative Crafter | Sarah Cashin

A lot of busy university students who also volunteer in various ways, who are involved in various groups, who have a job AND who are currently a Maid of Honor in a friend's wedding
MIGHT shy away from crafting.

But not Sarah, she is a great example of a "Creative Crafter on a budget" as she finds awesome items and ideas online and instead of buying them she makes them herself!

Some of Sarah's Recent Craft Projects...

Hexagon Afghan |

Sarah is currently working on a Hexagon pattern Afghan that to buy would cost on average of $200 with some larger afghans costing upward of $1,200!
She got the idea/inspiration from this site that gives step by step directions on how to create this pattern.

Despite the intricate look of this afghan, Sarah says that it is quite an easy pattern to crochet.

This DIY project is a great example of how something that looks difficult might actually be quite simple to craft yourself, not only saving you money but also giving you a great sense of satisfaction and pride knowing that the lovely piece on your couch or bed is a
hand-made creation.

Kusudama Flowers |

Sarah has also recently made Kusudama Flowers. She found the step by step instructions on this site making it easy to follow along and produce some really neat paper flowers.
Sarah made sets of 12 flowers and formed them into balls to hang up with ribbon, she also used them for Christmas gifts (making them in a Christmas color scheme).

Kusudama flowers can be used for many different things:

- Decorating a gift or card

- Hung as a garland, a room divider or as curtains

- Made into a hanging ornament (such a a Christmas ornament) or use the flower ball in a smaller scale for on the Christmas Tree.

- Used for jewelry such as broaches, earrings, rings or necklaces

- They also look nice just as individual flowers in a clear vase.

- And can also make beautiful bridal bouquets!

On average Kusudama floral bouquets cost $40.00 plus shipping - so if you can make them yourself for your wedding, or a friend's wedding, it is totally worth the effort.

The colours can be totally customized to fit the wedding decor and theme and interesting paper such as sheet music or pages from novels or the bible can also be used to create a personal and custom flare. (*Suggestion: Print out sheet music, novel pages, poems or bible passages on card-stalk from your home computer as apposed to ripping out pages from books) :D

Here are a few images showing how great Kusudama Bridal bouquets look!

Buy/View it HERE in 'Posh Studio's' Etsy Shop

Buy / View it Here in 'Posh Studio's' Etsy Shop

Buy / View it Here in 'Posh Mis Mosh's' Etsy Shop

Crocheted Shamrock Garland |

Sarah made Shamrock Garlands in honour of St. Patrick's Day. She found the 'how to' on this site that gives the step by step directions on how to complete the project.

This is an image of one of the garlands that Sarah made. She gifted this garland to her Irish landlord who just loved it!

Here is a close up of the crocheted Shamrocks:
A Similar Shamrock Garland costs $25.00 + Shipping on Etsy! Making this project a big money saver with only the cost of a ball O' yarn!

A few more cute crochet garlands:

View/Buy it HERE in "The Lovely Lily" Etsy Shop

View/Buy it HERE in "Maria Konstantin's" Etsy Shop

View/Buy it HERE in "Sycamore Lane's" Etsy Shop

Thanks for much for sharing your 'Crafty Ideas' Sarah! Your crafts provide some great examples of how crafting and DIY projects can save a ton of money and can give our homes a homey and handmade aesthetic for less!

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The Before & Afters of our Home

Home Improvements Slide Show

Click on the slideshow to open up a 'Gallery' mode where you can scroll through the images.

"Befores" - Images of our home when we bought it

In Front Of Our New Home!

In Front Of Our New Home!

Wish List For Our Home:

Wish List For Our Home:

Our New Home Songs |