Friday, December 9, 2016

A CHRISTMAS VILLAGE, CHRISTMAS TREE SHOPPING & A HAPPY VILLAGE SAMPLE

A CHRISTMAS VILLAGE
I love Christmas Villages...I have four of them. They range from the crocheted village under the tree to an old, old set that my grandma used to set up to a couple different ceramic ones. Below are pictures of one of them.


And some close-ups...




As you can tell, I mixed houses from a variety of places. First there's the Scrooge Village, then several pieces made by a very good friend, and finally, the school house which my mom gave me many years ago because she was actually a teacher in a one-room schoolhouse!

CHRISTMAS TREE SHOPPING
Last weekend I did go Christmas Tree Shopping with two of my sons. One son wanted a live tree, so off we went. We discovered a wonderful place called Hidden Pond Tree Farm (organic). The trees were $50 and up. They provided saws, a way to transport the trees down to the main area, they trimmed the trees, put them in a protective wrap and even tied them unto the top of the car. Since we were going to stop at a few other places, we managed to get the tree inside!!!

They only allowed so many cars in at a time so the place isn't super crowded but the wait was only about 20 minutes. Once in, there were either cut trees or we could cut our own from a vast field. This is only a small portion of one field...

There was free cocoa...

Free marsh mellow roasting and free hayrides. One of places to roast marsh mellows is shown below in the front area. Behind the trees you can see folks getting ready to go on a hayride...

They had cut trees as well as wreaths for sale also...


I have to say that all three of us had a great time and want to do it again next year. Oh, and the tree is up and decorated in my son's home. I helped him get it straight. Memories! Setting up live trees in stands can be frustrating but we got it standing straight and tall.

HAPPY VILLAGE SAMPLE
I finished the top of my Happy Villages sample for the meeting tomorrow. Remember the background?

This is the sample so far...

To finish the piece, I will add a net, low loft batting and a back then machine quilt it with clear thread. 

I realized after it was done that I do not care for the white fabric with black circles. It looks okay in person, but I see on the photo that it does detract a bit from the rest of the houses. I will have to remember to audition my fabric a bit better.

Well, today was moving day for Lady J, so I ventured out and finished my Christmas Shopping for things that need to be mailed. Guess my Sunday will be spent wrapping and getting boxes ready to mail on Monday.

So how are your plans coming? I hope that you are taking your time to enjoy making all the preparations. For me, I am listening to music, watching Christmas movies and taking a bit of a respite from all the political news which I can only describe as unsettling.

Thanks for visiting...
Have a great weekend...
Talk to you on Monday...



Thursday, December 8, 2016

WHAT A WEEK...


Well, this has been an interesting week so far. Sorry I haven't posted but I was really sick...for about 20 hours. I felt it come on in about 30 minutes. First, eye strain, then my head really hurt, there were chills alternating with sweats,  nausea hit hard and finally diarrhea. I really felt just awful. It lasted about 20 hours and then it was gone.

Problem was that I was so drained that it took a couple days to recover. I simply had no energy and wound up sleeping. I'm doing okay today. Even made it to the Bronx for a light lunch. The trip was a bit longer because the express trains from Union Square (the 4 & 5) were not running so I wound up taking a local all the way up to Longwood.

Not sure if the train surfing accident was the cause or not. Unfortunately, a young man lost his life trying to do it. What is train surfing? Well, one way is to try and jump onto the platform from the area between subway cars before the train stops.

I managed to get the tree up this past weekend but no ornaments. The photo above is of my tree. I also got the other decorations out. The Precious Moments Nativity is always a hit with the children who visit...

And, yes, I do let them play with the characters.

I hope things are going well with you...
And that your holiday plans are coming together...
Thanks for dropping by...
Talk to you tomorrow...



Friday, December 2, 2016

SHORT POST & CHRISTMAS CRAFTING TIP TWO - A LIGHTED WINDOW DECORATION


A QUICK POST
A quick post this evening. I took Lady J to get her oil changed and ready for winter. From there I went to one of my favorite thrift stores...The AMVETS Thrift Store on Sunrise Highway on Long Island.

I am looking for some clothing for a friend who has special size needs. I found two pieces both on sale making the journey a success. I have also been looking for a dutch oven for myself but haven't found one yet.

Tomorrow is going to be fun.  Three of us are going to a Christmas Tree Farm located about an hour from here to cut down a tree. And take part in some of the free activities like hayrides. I will take pictures and HOPE they turn out.

CHRISTMAS CRAFTING TIP TWO
Yesterday, I shared the first of many Christmas crafting tips - a magazine folded tree. I will continue to share these tips during the month of December. Today, I want to share another crafting tip. Unfortunately, none - and I do mean none - of the pictures turned out for illustration, so I will just describe the craft.

I wanted a flat star or snowflake to put in my window which used only white lights. I could not find one. So, I made one. I used two large wire hangers. On one, I straightened the hanger part and flattened it unto one of the sides of the hanger. I left the hanger part on the other hanger.  (By hanger part, I mean the part that goes over the closet pole.)

Then I manipulated both hangers into a triangle with three equal sides. It was easy because of the original shape of the hangers. If the wire hangers are not easily shaped, you may have to rebend them.

Once the hangers were in the right shape, I laid them on top of each other with six equally spaced points. At this point I used wire at all intersections to keep the shape.

I had a strand of 50 white lights but you can use any number of lights. The way to make sure they are equally spaced is to divide the number of lights by the number of points, in this case 6. So for 50 lights you will have fifty divided by six which equals eight with a couple left over to ease in.

The hanger part that was left on one hanger is the top. Take the strand of lights and begin at the bottom of the star shape with the first light from the plug. Wind the lights around the outside shape spacing them according to the number of lights on your strand. Winding is a bit time consuming, but for the price of one strand of lights which I got on sale for $1.99 and two free hangers, I have a really nice star shape to place in my window.

When I think about it, there are a ton of different shapes that can be made for all sorts of holidays. How about a heart using red lights? Or a shamrock using green lights? I bet you can think of some yourself.

That's it for this week...
Thanks for visiting...
Talk to you on Monday...