Fourth of July Wreath

When searching for fusible web at Michael’s for the Hungry Little Caterpillar T-shirt (see my last post), I passed by a bunch of colorful patriotic flowers. Until I saw these, I didn’t know flowers could be patriotic! I still had my spring wreath hanging by my door, so I removed the spring flowers, added the patriotic flowers, a flag, and a bit of glitz, and within minutes had a new wreath to celebrate the Fourth. Happy Birthday, America!

Hungry Little Caterpillar T-shirt

Last week my grandson celebrated his first birthday, and we had a Hungry Little Caterpillar party at my house for him. I quickly threw together this cute T-shirt for him to wear. The T-shirt came from Hobby Lobby, where I used my 40% coupon, which made the purchase price $1.80. I found a coloring sheet online here to use for a pattern. I ironed fusible web to several scraps of fabric from my quilting stash, and then used the pattern to cut up the pieces of the caterpillar, and of course I wanted a bright yellow sun. I drew the “one” freehand and cut it up out of striped fabric backed with fusible web. I ironed on all the pieces to the store-bought white T-shirt and Voila! A Hungry Little Caterpillar T-shirt. After a few washings, the fusible web pieces will probably start to curl away from the shirt, but it worked fine for the party. If I had wanted a permanent shirt, I could have sewn the pieces down, but that was more work than needed to be done for our purposes.

The T-shi

The T-shirt

cute tags for the refreshments

Wearing the shirt

atticus birthday 014

Cute tags on the refreshments

Landscaping Project #2

To be honest, this was not my creative effort, but my husband’s. He built a small pond in our back yard a few years ago, right beside our breakfast nook windows. There is a small waterfall in the corner, and we love the sound of flowing water. We enjoyed the pond so much, my husband decided to expand it this past spring. It now circles out around the deck. He added a new path around the pond, and we added new landscaping beds on each side. I helped choose and plant flowers in the new beds. I love perennials since they come up each year, so I am using this opportunity to try out some new plants.  Whatever doesn’t work I will pull up and move, and we will try something new next year. That’s the great thing about flowers! Here are some “before and after” pics of the pond. We had to begin all over with pond plants, but by the end of the summer, the plants in our new pond should be flourishing.

Old pond

Old pond


Expanded pond

Expanded pond

Pathway and flower beds

Pathway and flower beds

A different view

A different view

Landscaping Project #1

I didn’t post on my blog at all in May, but I was busy! May always brings a slew of yardwork and landscaping, and this May we were especially busy with two large projects. The first project involved a little curb appeal around the front entrance to the house. When we moved here, the entire front of the house was surrounded by a hedge. Well, if you know me, hedges are definitely not my style! Hedges bring to mind words like plain, orderly, neat rows, trimming, upkeep. (If you have hedges at your house, I still love you.) It took a while to win my husband over, but now he thinks it was his idea to get rid of the hedge around our entryway, so he chopped out the shrubs last fall. We did some initial plantings then, but when spring came, I had to get busy choosing more plants and then planting them. I definitely love shopping for plants better that actually digging holes! Here are some before and after pictures. I took the “after” picture last month, so the plants are a little larger now and look even better. I’ve also added a couple of caladiums.

 Old hedges

New landscaping

Sprucing up the windows

Spring always brings about the desire to spruce up the house a bit; I crave color and light after the dreary grays and cold of winter. The perfect solution for me this spring was to get rid of the heavy gold valances in my windows for something a little brighter and more colorful. It makes me wonder what I was thinking to buy those old valances in the first place! However, the answer is that they matched the couch perfectly, and they do look fine in the autumn and winter. I like valances rather than curtains so I can see the nature in our back yard; when we moved here we planted flowers, ground cover, and shrubs on the slope in the back yard, and I can sit on the couch and view these plantings, as well as the birds and butterflies that like to visit them.Right now I have a view of pink and red azaleas, and later in the summer I will have knock-out roses and crepe myrtles.

Here are some pictures of the before and after; it is hard to take pictures of valances in the daylight, but I hope you get the idea.I used a Waverly fabric, “Pom Pom Play,” and I love the playfulness and the colors!



New valance

New valance


old valance

Fairy Garden

This week turned out to be a busy week babysitting my 9 month old grandson, who has recently learned to crawl at rocket speed from room to room. However, I found some time to be creative. Last Saturday my daughter and I attended a fairy garden workshop at a local nursery, and we both created some magical places for fairies to dwell. When I taught 5th grade, my students and I enjoyed going into the school woods and creating fairy houses for the woodland fairies, but I had never created a container fairy garden, which was one of my goals for this spring. A couple of months ago,  I  bought a wooden circle basket at a local boutique, knowing that it would be the perfect house for my fairy. I lined the basket with a coco fiber mat, and the nursery provided potting soil. They had small “fairy garden” plants for sale, as well as delightful fairies and accessories. One of my students’ parents had given me the little fairy rock as a gift last year, and it added just the right accent to my fairy garden!


fairy garden 003     fairy garden closeup


In other garden news, I bought the perfect watering can at Target (with a gift certificate) to water my front porch plants. I also planted dahlia bulbs in a new flowerbed in the back yard. I have never planted dahlias before, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that these gorgeous pink flowers will pop up this summer!



fairy garden 008 fairy garden 009



Spring Wreath

The first day of spring was last week, the temperatures rose, and I wanted to celebrate Spring!! A quick trip to Hobby Lobby resulted in an bouquet of 50% off silk flowers and a grapevine wreath. I was inspired by pictures found on Pinterest, and I found this a surprisingly easy craft; just clip the flowers with a wire cutter and stick them in the wreath. It took me a whole five minutes, and I was very pleased with the result. Today is cold and rainy; there’s a freeze warning for tonight and the temperature will dip to 25 degrees. But it’s spring on my front porch!

spring wreath 002

Spring wreaath