Friday, December 21, 2007

It's the most wonderful time . . .

I'm finally starting to feel more Christmas spirit. Could it be that I'm hours away from a 12 day vacation from work? Hmmm . . . that sure is a big part I bet. It's also so fun to see people on the subway toting in packages for their work friends and employees. I think I need a peppermint mocha to really push me over the holiday edge, don't you? Good thing there's a Starbucks in my building, across the street and 1 block away huh?? ;)

So as promised here is the GORGEOUS ribbon brooch Heidi sent me:

Isn't it perfect?!? She learned to make them in a class at Silver Bella. I love the colors, the sparkle, the sweet velvet ribbon, everything! I told her that I was going to run out and get one of the wonderful $5 "silk pashminas"* you can buy on the street in NYC to match.

Aren't I fancy now?? :) Included in my package was also a gift certificate to the Savers. The thrift store has gift certificates! I'm so excited to go and can't wait to show you what I find. I think as with all gift certificates one must splurge a bit.

Heidi, thank you so so much for both the lovely gift and for being such a fabulous friend!

And to all of you, who make me smile with your comments, your blogs, your creations and your wit, have a wonderful holiday! I'll be off to Charm City for a while but will definitely be online checking to see how everyone spent their Christmas and New Years.

Here's to Peace on Earth . . .

with love ~ Rebecca

* - If you get t0 NYC and see the $5 pashminas I promise you it's $5 well spent. While we all know they are far from silk they are soft and pretty and come in every color you can imagine. I have quite a few and wash them in the washer. If anyone would like one please let me know and we can swap for it in 2008!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Swappy Wonderland

Many of you are involved in the Sweet Goodness Holiday Sister Swap. Lucy and I had high hopes for this one. We wanted to bring people together to get to know each other and become friends. I hope we've achieved that! We'll be requesting feedback from our swappers soon to see if we should make this swap an annual event. So please, if you participated, check with Sweet Goodness soon and give us your opinion or leave myself or Lucy a comment on our blogs.

As you know, Breanna was my swap sister. Do you know she only lives 2 hours away from me? We are hoping for a spring time meeting perhaps at the Elephant's Trunk Flea Market. Breanna and her husband are going to become foster parents in 2008. They already have three wonderful children of their own but are ready to open their home to more children who really need a family's love and support. Breanna cares about the environment, gives to charity and encourages others to do so, too. Breanna is becoming a great knitter! Breanna keeps chickens and once had a bear IN HER YARD. Breanna has been the most wonderful swap sister and I hope we'll stay in touch and continue our friendship.

My December Swap Sister package from Ms. Graceful Designs herself:

Look at the goods! Does she know me or what? Dark chocolate, yummy recipes, tea, vintage tatting needles and tiny vintage baby, a sweet embroidered apron, flour sack towels and the adorable matroshka fabric I've been oogling forever!

She also sent me ANOTHER vintage Etude magazine, this one from Christmas 1921 and a sweet Irving Berlin piece. I think I'm going to frame that one and keep the Christmas music to decorate with.

And now, are you ready for this?

Isn't it the sweetest?? The recipe cards were tucked inside (what a clever holder for them!) I love this, it's perfect for my decor! I'm thinking of attaching a big ribbon and hanging it on my door, perhaps inside a wreath?? Oh I could go on.

So thank you Breanna! Not only for this fabulous swap package (and the one in October and the one in November) but for being my friend and letting me get to know you.


I am hoping to post tomorrow, too. I also received a lovely surprise holiday package with the most to die for ribbon brooch from Heidi. I MUST show you. I love it! I've been truly touched this week by the kindness of my bloggin' sisters.


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

On a Roll . . .

I finished two more things last night. FOR REAL.

I finished the stitching of this little matroshka some time ago but I wasn't sure what to do with her. I put the aida on two layers of batting and some black cotton with the ribbon sandwiched in between and sewed a square. Then I pinked the edges and hung her on my tree. :) I'm keeping her.

I did make a similar ornament for my sister:

Cross stitch is hard to photograph. This is much cuter in person. I actually like this one better than the one I am keeping. :) Definitely nice to feel productive!

We are leaving on Friday for Baltimore and I won't be blogging until the next year most likely. I will be back once more before we go to show you the wonderful package I received from my holiday swap sister, Breanna!

And I'll leave you with my new holiday mantra:

Thanks for the fun card, Nina!!


Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Two down . . .

I finished something! Yeah! Am I 100% satisfied? Um . . . no. But seriously, when is that going to happen?

So what's in the box??

A gift set for my boss. An eyeglass case, a sleep mask and two lavender sachets. I did the cross stitch on the front of the sachets and I will say that I am very happy with the way they turned out. I'm pretty sure these will be a "go to" gift for me in the future. The mask came out nice but the eye glass case has a bit of wonky stitching. I did tell my boss that I started sewing only recently so I think she'll forgive my not so straight lines. :) Oh and the blue material is thrifted, it was a curtain. The white lining material and cotton batting is from a remnant bin and I had the aida cloth, blue embroidery floss and the lavender. I only had to purchase the elastic for the sleep mask band. Not bad!

And guess what? I finished something else, too. Now I know you're shocked. Remember this hat? (and NO I haven't finished the afghan I showed in that post yet. Let's not get hysterical.)

Yep, that would be me wearing it. I have a cold and my nose is as red as my glasses. NICE. But that hat is done which is all that is important. I opted for tassels instead of the pom poms the pattern called for. I like them better plus I stink at making pom poms. Here's a better shot:

And look! There's the Christmas panty liner. I was wondering when that would show up. *eyes roll* I really need to work on my photo staging LOL. The Dayquil is making me loopy. ANYWAY, the hat is done, my boss' gift is done and if we're lucky I'll finish one more gift this evening. But seriously, I'm not holding my breath.


Friday, December 14, 2007

I've Tagged Myself

I saw this meme over at Simply Mein and had to do it just to see if I could. So I tagged myself. :)

Here's how it works - answer the questions and type into Google image search and then post results from first results page: (I cheated a little bit on the first results page thing)

the age you will be on your next birthday

a place that you would like to visit

one of your favourite places

your favourite object

your favourite food

your favourite colour

your favourite animal

name of a past pet

where you live

1st grade teachers last name

your middle name

a bad habit of yours

your college major

your favourite holiday

This was fun so now I'm tagging Vallen, Lucy, Heidi, Heidi and Shara. Because I know yours will all be fascinating. :) And if anyone else does it let me know!

Have a lovely weekend. I'm off to get ready for Christmas with the Colombians. ;)


Thursday, December 13, 2007


Dear Vallen,

Thank you for making my day.

I promise to use my fairy powers for good and not evil.

And to strike envy into the hearts of those around me.

Your very happy friend,

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

What HAVE I been doing?

Believe me, that is a question I have asked myself often these days. I am feeling very non-productive in all arenas of my life. I am starting to worry for my mental health and may take it on a long over due spa vacation sometime soon.

I have no excuses other than the fact that I am exhausted which is making it difficult to focus or finish things. This holiday season has been busier than most for me and I. AM. NOT. ENJOYING. IT. There, I said it. Now maybe I'll cut myself a little slack, shorten my to do list and spend sometime wallowing in Christmastime cheer. Lord knows I need it.

Many of my holiday gift projects are just not up to par. The hat I so lovingly (and strandingly) knit my sister is tight on my head. Yep. And she has a bigger head. GREAT. So I am not want to finish it. Sigh. And that afghan I started? I know I won't finish that so why bother? The cross stitch sachets and sleep mask for my boss? Half done. The good half but STILL. It's time to FOCUS PEOPLE. Seriously. This Saturday we are hosting Luis' family for our annual Christmas get together. I have come up with a menu that won't stress me out and once Luis decides to escort me to the toy store for some gifts for the kiddies my heart may stop palpitating. On Sunday I need to get things done as it's my last weekend day at home before we leave for my parents on 12/21.

So . . . what HAVE I been doing?

These little guys came together so quickly and made me feel a little better about my non-craftiness. Are they gifts? No. In fact that are wares for a small store in Lancaster where there is a tiny corner of Goodness for sale. Inspired by Vallen who says I inspired her to put trees and sewing spools together so it's a whole chicken vs. egg thing. I think they are very "Country Christmas" and I did save one to put on my own tree

I also made these for myself:

I bleached them a la Sarah (they are a bit more white than they appear here), glued them into spools and added some glass glitter. I would like to try for another layer of glitter as it looks a bit thin but aren't they cute?

So at least I've accomplished this small thing and maybe, just maybe, it will be enough to shove me into holly jolly mode. I guess we'll have to wait and see.


Wednesday, December 05, 2007

So what can you get for $20?

Hello there! I've been crazy busy at work and thus sleeping a lot at home so I'm behind in posting. I need a vacation!

Anyway, we had a great time at the rummage sale on Saturday! Catherine was a darling hostess to both Katie and I and we even got to meet Monica! Such fun.

So, what CAN you get for $20? Here is my fabulous haul:

That would be two sea shell baking pans, 3 lotus bowls, 2 tins, a stainless steel shaker and an orange KitchenAid silicone cake mold. But wait . . . there's more . . .

A fabulous red tin tray, a ceramic rooster, a package of cocktail napkins, 5 vintage hankies, a pink table cloth, two pairs of knitting needles, vintage cupcake picks (Valentine's Day and St. Patrick's day) and a sweet old Hershey's mug. And I must show you the bottom of that darling rooster:

Thank you, Esther! He has a good home now, don't you worry. And I promise to throw him a grand old party on his 50th birthday in a few years. ;)

And still . . . there is more . . . .

Two new Waverly valances, a chair cushion and a place mat all in "Sweet Violets." I know what colors I'll be decorating my craft room in next year!

A set of 4 tin plates in a tin from Restoration Hardware (this is a favorite find!) and some gorgeous holiday ribbon.

And did I save the best for last? You bet!

I found the ornaments spread all over the place and most are Shiny Brite. I later found the empty box under the table and snatched it! I felt so lucky finding these. I really love the red ones with the gold crowns. They are my sure favorite with the bells coming in a close second. And how about that dove in the bottom middle? He's a favorite, too.

So thank you again Catherine for taking us! I had a great time and can't wait until next year. I'll share some of the finds from the thrifts we visited that day tomorrow.


Friday, November 30, 2007

Deck the Halls

My tree is up. Ha! No for real, it is. I put it up the Friday after Thanksgiving every year like clock work. I usually put up two trees but the blue and silver porch tree hasn't made it out of the boxes yet. Part of me wants to skip it. That's sad considering how much I love to decorate for Christmas. I can't explain it but I'm just not as festive this year. But I'm trying to get in the mood and seeing all the fun things out there in blog land is sure helping!

So how about I share some of my decorations? First I must show you this:

Don't you just love him?? He was made by The Polka Dot Pixie herself! Jen was kind enough to make me three of these guys in exchange for the set of cherry plates I sent her earlier this year. I have already given the others to my Mom and Sister. I just adore Jen's stuff and was late to the rodeo this year so I missed all her goodies in her Etsy shop so I am very glad she sent me these early!

These two are from Target. They are my only purchase from there so far (other than some glittery snowflakes and a house ornament) and I had to have them! I love the colors and they are my very first nut crackers.

I've seen lots of pictures of Martha's Christmas stuff at Kmart but I never get to go there (it's only in Manhattan and they are the grossest stores) but I did make my way to Macy's when all of their ornaments were 40% off (plus my coupon for an additional 10%!) and picked up this:

She has a few others like this one with houses inside and one with snowmen. I might need them, too. I also picked up a paper dove which I think was from her collection but I'm not sure. In the same area as the dove I found this awesome sign!

I think it looks fabulous on my hutch and I'm sure this will become a yearly favorite. And speaking of favorites, this is in the center of my table:

Now here is some Thrifty Goodness for you. The tinsel tree (there is also one the other side) was $2.99, the silver crackle ornaments were bought after Christmas 2 years ago for $1 a piece, the cake plate was $3 at the thrift and that wonder paper house? It's from Costco and is FULL of gingerbread men. For only $15 you too can own your very own "House Full of Cookies." (seriously, that is what the tag said!) Oh and the cookies are good, too. :) I'm going to save this bad boy. The cookies are sealed in bags so it's perfect inside.

I also put up the little tree I got last year for my Russian ornaments.

This year I added some pink balls I thrifted. Not vintage but a lovely color and I think it looks better than this picture, don't you?!

Just writing this post has put me more in a Christmas state of mind and maybe a quick stop at Macy's on my way home will seal the day. Tomorrow I'm off to rummage with the one and only Vax Girl aka Catherine! We went last year and I wonder if I'll do even better this year? Wish me luck!!

ciao bellas

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


Who doesn't love a good garland? I know I do! Could be the reason Sweet Lucy and I made sure the November portion of the Holiday Sister Swap included one and why I also signed up for the Ga Ga for Garlands swap. :) So, what did I get??

From my amazing Holiday Swap Sister Breanna for the "swags & tags" November swap:

She is too good to me! In addition to the swag and tags, she included a fabulous box of my favorite candy (thank you 20 questions!), a sweet glittered leaf ornament and ANOTHER copy of Etude sheet music magazine from 1921! In our October Swap she gave me an issue with Beethoven on the cover to use in my paper arts but I told her that is was way too pretty to slice and dice so she sent me this one in hopes that I'll use it. We'll see, Bree, we'll see. It's mighty pretty, too. ;)

So now for a close up of the swag:

Isn't it marvelous? It says "Live, Laugh, Love" and I plan to hang it on my porch once I've cleared it of tubs 'o' Christmas crap.

And the tags?

Paper cards with the cutest matryoshka fabric! I love them!

And it's like she read my mind because I'm a little obsessed with matryoska lately. I'll get into that in another post. :)

So thank you sweet swap sister, I love everything!


I was paired with the equally talented Tini for the Ga Ga for Garlands swap. How lucky am I? If you're a paper junkie like me then you covet German trimmings and art images especially around the holidays.

Isn't it darling? And I left it in the tree and it's perfect! (Boy, for having a lot of ornaments that sure looks like a bare spot . . . Macys, here I come!)

Each part is adorable but the angels may be my favorite. :)

And look at all the OTHER goodies she sent!

Oh boy, CANDY. I love candy. And that heart on the left there is a totally cute ornament.

Thank you, Tini dear, I am thrilled with the goodies you send me!


So I've been a bit of a mad poster this week! There are big doin's around the office tomorrow and Friday so I may not be able to post again until next week but I'll try to sneak over.



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