Thursday, January 5, 2012

I know Christmas is over but-I wanted to share the work I did

This year for our secret santa thing at work I happened to get one of my bestest friends. I couldn't just go with your run of the mill stuff. There were 4 days of $1 gifts and then 1 final gift with a cap of $10. I decided to make things, but knew that if I gave her what I was making for those dollar gifts she would know it was me. So I started off the week giving her a can of tuna. It was funny. She immediately knew it was me, but at least I could have fun with her. Anyway, one of the gifts I made was one I had seen on Pinterest. They were scarves made out of upcycled T-shirts.

Not entirely sure what happened to the pictures I had of the actual scarves once I was done with them, but I can't find them. Anyway, I also knitted her a scarf, and crocheted her a washcloth and gave her a bar of Oil of Olay soap. No, she doesn't smell, I just liked the idea of giving her something that smelled wonderful.

Gorgeous cream color

So that was my gift for a very good friend of mine. I also made scarves out of t-shirt for my lovely sister Shawna over at A Very Dandoislion Life and knitted a scarf for my wonderful mommy!

Thrifty Lamp Fun

 Yesterday evening, or yesternight:) I went to the Salvation Army. I have a tendency to go there once or twice a week because you just never know. I went the day before that and there was nothing I wanted. In fact the shelves were almost empty. I went back yesternight(hey, this may be the next new word) and found a bunch of clothes and two lamps. The lamps have clear bases and the lampshades match...well except that one of the lampshades was stained a bit of yellow.
The lamps in their original condition.
 My hope was to ombre dye the lamp shades so that they would be darker on bottom and gradually fade to lighter colored. I also had a brighter green color in mind, more a lime green. However, this was not to be. The big batch of color didn't turn out the same color as the test batch, I must have miscounted or something. Then the lampshades didn't absorb the color as I as hoping. Plus to further irritate me, I didn't have a large enough bin so that the lampshade could go deep into the dye. I had to use the sink. They barely fit into the sink. So I had to dye all the way around it on it's side first, to cover the whole thing. Then I did the bottom and the top. Unfortunately that left a wide swath in the middle and very definite lines on them. As the dye started to dry, the shiny squares on the shades came out more and actually gave the lamps a sort of Mad Hatter at the Tea Party type look. I may add a ribbon around that middle section. Maybe. I also may redye them. But for now I am in like with them. NOT in love.

So jury is out. What do you think?

Decorating the Christmas Tree

Putting the tree up this year was interesting. The tree I decided to use was one that had been in the basement a couple of years and needed to be cleaned. All the labels had also fallen off of all the branches and there happen to be over 60 branches. So I lugged all the branches up the stairs from the basement then all the way up to the second floor. Washed them in the tub and let them dry. That took forever and eventually I just started putting the tree together, figuring that getting them on the tree would get them more airflow so they would dry faster.
my progress after 4 hours of washing and trying to figure out where the branches were supposed to be. Notice it's not right yet!
Eventually I got the thing together. Then I had to go buy new white lights. Did I buy enough? No. So we couldn't decorate the tree until I got around to the store a couple of days later. They were out of the 100 light string so I bought a 50. Well when I got them home and open, they were a closed circuit string of other words there was no plug on the other end. So I ran to Home Depot in desperation. They were out too. Except for a garland string of lights which had 3 lights in a cluster along the whole thing. It had to do. I was getting very upset about not having a tree up!

So there you go. After hours and hours of work, our gorgeous tree. Now when I took it down yesterday I labeled each branch and put them on in bins to protect them from muck. Next year will be a piece of cake!!! I even made a list with the order of the colors so there is NO guesswork!

Pre-Christmas Stuff

I just happened to realize that I hadn't posted about the stuff that we did leading up to Christmas. We baked cookies...twice! The first time didn't go as well because the mixer broke while we were trying to make the frosting! What a bummer. It was mixed enough to use but it didn't have that magic goodness. Of course the second time, we did them, we made 9 billion! No exaggeration. Here are some pics!

I think anyone who says kids can't help bake is insane. Both my girls helps with ingredients, mixing and rolling out the cookie dough. Do they need help? Sure! But how else do children learn if they aren't allowed to do things? Anyway they may not have been professional quality but it was fun, messy and yummy!