Friday, May 31, 2013

four fanciful things

Bathing Suit ~ Ann
Hammock ~ Ikea
Flower Bowl ~ Ikea
Dishtowels ~ Ikea
The sad part of this beautiful and colorful list is that I can't order the items from Ikea online and the store nearest home is four hours away in Atlanta.  Is there a roadtrip in my future?  I can just see chunks of cold watermelon in the sweet bowl and me... lounging in the woods at Camp Hulsey in the hammock wiping the watermelon from my chin with the cheeky, matching dishtowels. 
Ahhh a summer dream.
I am in search of a new bathing suit and am frankly a bit shocked at what I have been finding.  I am approaching forty for crying out loud.  I don't want my bottoms to go below my hip bone.  I want my tush covered people.. is that so wrong?  And they aren't cheap to boot.
 I love this blue one from Ann Taylor with the Chevron stripes.  So cute!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Hanging Basket Planter

An old, or new, vegetable/fruit hanging basket in the "trio" style is such a cute way to pot summer plants.  I made this one a couple of years ago.  The most difficult part is cutting and wiring in the coconut matt.  I cut my pieces and wedged and pushed them into place then used wire to push through and twist to hold the matt in place.  It has worked great!  The first year I had Ivy in the top basket so it would trail down.  This year I chose to use Begonias since they handle shaded area of my porch well. 

2010 Version.

Monday, May 27, 2013

She's Home!

Well... our new puppy has finally come to live with us!  We picked her up Friday evening and our hearts are just filled with all of her sweetness!  She slept all night, except when we woke her up to go outside, for three nights now.  She plays, eats, sleeps, plays, eats and sleeps some more, just like she is supposed to.  She is so smart it seems even for a seven week old pup.  When she plays, she will fetch and bring it back to you and follows us around the farm and even helped us plant the garden yesterday although she mainly helped from the shade.  She is so incredibly spoiled and fits right in with us, however Miss Kitty isn't as thrilled as we are but she'll come around.  And Tommy, our house cat, says she can stay. 



Thursday, May 23, 2013

Homemade Granola

You talk about something good!  Granola has so many uses and a good, easy batch is easier to make than you think.  I love it in yogurt, in making cookie bars and granola bars, on ice cream, in a bowl with milk or heck, straight from the bag!  This recipe is super easy and it's ingredients can be altered to what you have.  I have used walnuts or pecans instead of sunflower kernels or along with.  I have used raisins, white chocolate chips, regular chocolate chips, and even left over green coconut.  Not the old moldy kind silly...  I had colored the coconut for my gingerbread house over Christmas and used the left overs in my granola.  Just throw in whatever you've got! 
I hope you try this recipe!  I feel you will be most happy with it.  Be sure to stir every ten minutes while baking to prevent over baking on the bottom.

 After 10 minutes.
 20 minutes.
 30 minutes.
 After 40 minutes.
 All done!
I store mine in a big mason jar most of the time.  Be sure and let it cool or you'll wind up burning your tongue like I did.  I get so impatient with this stuff!

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Checked Out: The Witch's Daughter

My book this week on Checked Out is
The Witch's Daughter
By: Paula Brackston
This book literally took me four days to read, which is pretty amazing that a book captured my attention and held it until I finished it.  I read every chance I got and loved it.  This book really had several intense moments.  It began in the 1600's and, towards the end of the book, wound up in the 2000's.  Wild.  I loved reading about the main character's garden and planting and herbs and concoctions that she sold.  Some of the witchy part I didn't understand nor believe in and I wasn't truly impressed with the end of the book although it left the story well. 
I have to admit something I did.  I was more than three fourths of the way into this book when I went on to see what else this author had written and happened on reviews of the book that I was reading.  I wish I hadn't done this.  I like to pick up a book, knowing nothing about it, and read it.  I don't even like to read the outside or inside flap that gives you a little insight to what the book is about.  I don't like to form opinions about the book before I have read every word and reading a couple of reviews on this book made me think different of it by the time I got to the end.  I think I would have found it more believable or interesting if I hadn't read a negative review from another reader.  BooHoo.  I like the book anyway!  I want to go back and read the gardening parts.  They really did inspire me to work in my own herb garden.  I love making oils and extracts and such and connected with the character in that way.  Therefore I give the book a high rating.
Checked Out Rating: 9

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

A Treasury

Treasury lists are very popular on  Our bathtub caddy has been in quite a lot, which is fantastic and good exposure.  When you are on the first page of the site, you can scroll down and on your left you will find Treasury.  They are compilations of found items on etsy with a common denominator such as... navy blue, spa time or beachy, and you can submit them and they sometimes find their way to the front page.  Which I love to be a part of. 
Here is a Rustic Chic treasury I made to share with you.  It is much like my four fanciful things series that comes about on Fridays but I still love to share things that I find with you.  I feel you fancy it as well.  Thanks to you for your time and attention.  ~xo

Monday, May 20, 2013

Vintage Enamelware Uses

Ahhhh my beloved enamelware.  It's true... enamel pieces and I have had a long going love affair for years upon years.  To this day I cannot get enough of the stuff.  I usually find pieces at yard sales and antique shops and I have had to say no from time to time if an item is priced too high though believe me when I say I didn't want to.  I have bowls hanging on walls, ones I use in the kitchen all the time and some that I plant in.  Even the coffee pots get some use housing feathers and flowers in different areas of our home.  I have bigger pieces that I use when canning green beans and pickles for rinsing and soaking purposes.  The list of uses for the old enamelware just go on and on.  I decided to pick five fun uses of enamelware pieces that I have used lately to share with you!  I hope you fall in love and find lovely pieces of enamelware for yourself... or for me! 
A beer bucket from an old chamber pot.  Keeps 'em cold!

Hens & Chickens planted in and old pee pot. 
Quite the conversation piece.

Lemon Balm given to me by a friend will have plenty of room to fill this large bowl with rust holes in the bottom.

I have taken to using cheaper laundry powder and this old cooking pot with lid serves as the perfect holder instead of some ugly box sitting around.

An old colander works great for an evening ice bucket.  As the ice melts the water falls into the beautiful bowl underneath.

Do you have a "thing" for enamelware?  If so I'd love to hear about your uses for the stuff.  And if you need to get rid of some... well you know I'll take it off your hands.

Saturday, May 18, 2013


As promised, I did my best to capture the sounds that seep through our open windows in Spring.  There is no picture to watch, just the sound of frogs in the trees and around the pond to the side of our home.  I remember the frogs being so loud at the pond behind the day care that we could barely hear one another talking.  Not a complaint!  I love it.  I wait for it all Winter long. 

If you listen closely they really begin to get piped up about thirty seconds in.  I guess they saw me on the back porch.

Friday, May 17, 2013

four fanciful things: world market style

I am a World Market fan... big time!  It is the only place that I will buy olive oil and i know if I can't find a good price on spices, I can there.  I love what they have to offer in home decor as well.  Matter of fact I just happened on their website this morning and chose four fanciful things to share with you in a heartbeat of a hummingbird. 

Thursday, May 16, 2013

In This Skin

Me and my spotted skin... here we go.  I live with psoriasis.  My psoriasis is called Guttate Psoriasis.  Red spots form on my skin anywhere they want to, without reason or timing or cause from anything I am doing.  The cells in my skin produce at a more rapid rate than they should.  I have been dealing with the red spots for about six years.  Before that I dealt with white spots or areas of my skin turning into white splotches which happened mainly when I would tan and mainly on my torso.  It was like my tan would peel off. This I can remember starting in my late teens to early twenties.  Whether the white spots are related to the red spots I don't know.  Doctor after dermatologist can't make it go away.  Items help and sometimes make it lighter but never go away completely.  I feel that I am in a lucky stage right now because the red spots are mainly on my shins, the white spots remain everywhere. 
The sad part to me is that this is the first year that I have actually thought about hiding it from people.  When you go from long pants and jeans, because of warmer weather, to shorts and skirts and the kids at day care ask about my owees and does it hurt.  The truth is that it does hurt at times and it does itch and I do want to hide it.  The good thing is that I do have ways to make it feel better and please believe me that I have tried remedy after remedy over the years.  When you have something like this, that is visible to everyone, you try everything from tar to vitamins to teas to sunlight to lotions to medicines.  One tube of cream from the pharmacy had a retail price of $860.00.  Yeah.. that is what I said... and it doesn't work... for me anyway. 
So there is my confession and here is what it looks like and what I use to calm it down and the best lotion that I have found to use.  I wanted to share because I know I am not the only one and you may have it or may know someone who is at their whits end and maybe something I show you that I use may help flare ups or itching.  Or maybe you have a suggestion for me that worked for someone you know. 

And what I use.
ugh this is as big as the picture gets.  If you can't see something let me know and I will help you find it.  I didn't include links to the products and for that I apologize.  I feel as if I have said enough.  Sometimes I let people in on the blog here before I would ever let anyone in in person.
And by the way, psoriasis is hereditary and supposedly can go into remission.  Here's hoping!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Easy Croutons

I have never made croutons in my life... up until now.  I was taking an easy route while making supper by omitting a vegetable and adding a salad.  Just a plain salad with iceberg lettuce, sliced grape tomatoes, shredded cheddar cheese and croutons.  But alas, when I went to the pantry there were no croutons to be found.  How sad.  I thought for a moment about making them and almost decided to tough out the salad without any crunchy goodness about.  I opened my trusty red and white Better Homes cook book and thumbed to page 431.  There I found simple instructions and proceeded to make a simple batch of croutons that only took a little bit of time and I created magic. 

I love and adore a good crouton.  When I think of a restaurant where I normally order a salad with my meal, I can picture what kind of croutons the salad will include.  These croutons are light in the middle and perfectly crunchy on the outside without breaking your jaw.  I had no idea, I just had no idea that I could make something so easy and kick every crouton's ass that I have ever tasted.  You can do it too you know... and you should.


See, I liked the first picture of ingredients but it didn't show you the label on the seasoning good enough.  Blogging is work y'all!  Oh and you don't have to use unsalted butter.  I normally don't unless I am baking.  This was all a set up after the fact when I realized that I made the best croutons ever.  Had I known I would have made pictures the first time.  I need to trust my abilities before hand huh?


Monday, May 13, 2013

Headed Our Way

Well folks... I have great news.  We have a puppy headed our way!  After trying to adopt a rescue dog that was two years old, and it not working out, we decided that we needed to start fresh with a puppy who will know us it's whole life.  Shaun has been looking for puppies and a dog for a couple of months now and Thursday I came across an add in the Tennessean-online.  I made a phone call and it turned out the lady was just one town over from us!  All of the other places were going to require a road trip.  This trip was only about fifteen minutes.  When we got there I was very relieved that it wasn't a puppy mill.  You just never know.  The couple had both parents there and they were extremely friendly and well mannered dogs.  We somehow picked which puppy we wanted from a litter of eleven!  Tough choice because all of the puppies were friendly and everywhere!  We chose a little girl with pretty standard markings of a Border Collie and she has the cutest freckles on her nose.  We get to pick her up in two weeks.  The agony of waiting!!! 

Rolly Poley Sweet Baby Girl.
We don't have a name for her yet and are open to suggestions!