Saturday, December 20, 2014

The Wonderland Woods Workshop



Hello friends!! Hope you are all having a very merry Christmas this year.  We've been super busy with our new home school adventures - it's so much fun! I haven't had much time for making things and blogging these days, but I did manage to spend a few cozy fireside evenings crafting a few little ornaments.  I thought I would share them with you!


My family especially liked this one that looks like a little gnome home.  Can you see the little immature acorn I used for his doorknob?  Everything I used to make these was literally stuff I had lying around the house and stuff I've gathered from the woods.  I had so much fun making these! I had almost forgotten how much fun it is to make things.  Now I've got the bug again - the crafting bug, and I'm full of ideas and excitement.  I love when that happens.



I love the sweet gum ball "bead" on this one.  I've been trying to come up with a way to use those little guys for years.  So simple. Just some paper, scissors, glue, and things collected from my walks in the woods makes me unreasonably happy.  Oh, and add to that a crackling fire, a snoring cat, some soft Christmas choral music in the background and you have my idea of peace on earth.  It really is the simple things in life, you know?

Encouraged by friends and family, I finally had the courage to list these on Ebay.  Wish me luck!! If they sell, I might consider making more and finally opening that Etsy store I've been thinking about for years and years.  We'll see.  That dream just won't die, so I guess maybe I should just go ahead and give it a try.  I think if God keeps whispering something in our hearts and minds, maybe we should listen.

Well, here's wishing you all a very merry Christmas and happy holiday season.  I hope you all have love, warmth, peace and comfort for yourself and for your families this year and in the coming new year.

Best wishes!
Starr

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Blush








It is Indian summer here in Alabama, and cooler nights have finally brought autumn's first blush to our woodland home.  The trees are slow to turn as summer lingers at our doorstep, kissing us a fond farewell.  It was a glorious summer for us - the best ever, I think.  And in God's great wisdom, mercy, and love, he gives us the gift of autumn to ease her passing.

Many of you have asked how the home school is going, and I am warmed by your thoughtfulness and caring.  To be very honest, it's harder than I thought it would be, and I knew it wasn't going to be easy.  Some days I feel quite overwhelmed, but other days I wonder why we waited so long to do this.  It's a tremendous commitment and responsibility, but like all things that are worth doing, the rewards far exceed the difficulties.  I feel so blessed to be able to home school my children, and I'm giving it everything I've got, so if I'm absent for long stretches, please forgive.  It's a lifestyle change, and I'm not sure how I will ever find time for regular blogging again anytime soon, but only time will tell.  Thank you for your visits and your kind words.  I am truly humbled by how many people I've never even met can be so kind and caring toward me and my family.  Bless you.  See you soon! xoxo

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Upcycling: Ugly Pants to Pin Cushion


This peony motif was excised from a pair of ugly, ill-fitting $2 thrift store capri pants.  The fabric is linen, and I really liked the color and print.  It just didn't make for an attractive pair of pants.


So, I embellished the peony with some stitching and beading, stuffed it with batting and a little lavender sachet, and voila'! A lovely little lavender scented pin cushion. Say that three times fast ;)


Thursday, July 10, 2014

Embroidered Gecko Pillowcase




Stitched up this little pillowcase for my youngest. He loves it.  He named the stitched gecko "Lucky".  But, I know that I am the lucky one.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Bounty





We are quite literally enjoying the fruits of summer.  I think I may have mentioned in my last post that that tomato plant popped up in a flower pot in the back yard and I transplanted it into this big one, and now look at those little baby tomatoes!! Every single time that happens, it always feels like a miracle.  The blueberries are from the bushes planted by previous owners of this property many years ago, and the blackberries are wild.  My youngest son and I had such fun picking them this afternoon - he got so excited every time he found a big juicy fat one! Oh, how I hope and pray that excitement and pleasure sinks way down deep into his soul.  I hope he never loses that sense of joy and amazement at finding gorgeous food growing in the wild or in our own backyard.

Life is good, and my heart is full.  Here's wishing you all a happy Independence Day and may you also enjoy the fruits of summer.  Blessings to you and yours!


Monday, June 16, 2014

The Alabama Nature Center at Historic Lanark












The Boys and I had a fun day out last weekend at the Alabama Nature Center located at historic Lanark in Millbrook, Alabama.  We attended Hydrangea Fest where we were taken on a guided tour of the gardens surrounding the lovely old antebellum house.  There is a formal garden, a potager, and literally miles of walking trails through the surrounding forest.  They have a huge collection of both French and native hydrangeas surrounding the ponds near the house and we learned all about how to grow them successfully, how to propagate them, and even how to dry the flowers for use in crafts and floral displays.

The boys enjoyed the cool, shady, wooded trails that wound along the banks of creeks and through swampy cypress bogs; while I preferred the landscaped gardens around the house.  I've really been bitten by the gardening bug this year, and it was great fun for me to gather ideas about plantings and designs to take back to our garden at home.

It's too hot now to do much of anything except watering, but as I'm watering,  I'm planning a perennial border here, a shade garden there, a cutting garden down near the meadow, a vegetable patch...............you know how it goes ;)

What's blooming in your garden?

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

June








: Mushroom cap the size of a saucer! : blowing bubbles (through the front porch screen door) : gorgeous native oak leaf hydrangea : diy tomato trellis in the afternoon light : faux fossil clay pendants : pillowcase for the Little Boy (the one blowing the bubbles above :)

So much has happened in the last few weeks here.  School is out - for a very long time - as we have made the decision to homeschool our boys next year.  I am both looking forward to it and terrified at the same time.  When not Googling everything I can find about homeschooling, I am spending every available second outside.  The tomato plant in that pot sprouted in a flower pot in the back yard! So we went down to the woods, gathered up a wheelbarrow load of beautiful, black composted topsoil and filled up that huge pot with it.  Then we cut down some silver maple saplings (they grow like weeds here) and cut some long honeysuckle vines to secure it with - boom! diy tomato trellis. And finally, happily, I am making things again.  The stress of the past few months (jobs, finances, school) have melted away with the long summer afternoons.  I think I must be part plant.  I can feel myself unfurling.  Stretching.  Relaxing. Soaking up the sun.  Growing.

Love you guys. Thanks for stickin' with me.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Where the Wild Fern Grows


                                                           My favorite ferny glade.

                           
                               Christmas ferns, so called because they are evergreen here.
               
                             
                                I love the baby ones.

                             
                                These are my favorites - some type of broad leaf fern (possibly
                                sensitive fern, but I'm not sure)


                            

Here is the only mushroom I have seen thus far, and even he is hiding.


And finally, God has reminded me how adversity only makes us more beautiful and more interesting sometimes.  If we persevere.

Blessings, friends.