Friday, July 29, 2016

Late Summer - Five on Friday

Can you believe that July is almost over, Dear Friends? 

I'm sure that many of you are looking forward to
 some cooler temperatures! 

For us, in the Puget Sound region of Washington State, 
we are just getting started. 

It has been a very cool July, but the weather has changed
and now we are finally getting some much needed sunshine. 

I have been making the most of this time of year, 
so let me show you what I have been doing. 

A couple of months ago, Ramblin' Man 
cleared some woodlands of damaged trees
and leveled a site for a new tool shed that
he wants to build. 

We were so surprised to have all kinds of wildflowers
pop up in the clearing, including sunflowers!

No doubt the seed was buried by some
enterprising rodent, carried from the bird feeder! 

I am letting them go to seed
so I can grow more next year. 

One thing I always do this time of year, 
is save seeds from my favorite plants. 

Sweet William is one favorite plant 
that is easily propagated from seed. 

This pretty flower is biennial, blooming
the second year after planting. 

An added bonus - slugs and deer don't like it! 

Whenever I find a plant like that, I am very happy! 

It has a long bloom-time from early May to the end of July
and can take full sun to partial shade. 

Another plant that is easily grown
from seed are Foxglove. It's also a biennial
and is not bothered by slugs or wildlife, 
but is deadly poison. 

Just remember that there are many plants
that are poisonous and all young children
should be educated. 

Another plant I propagate from seed is Forget-me-not. 

It all started with one tiny plant that I bought from 
a church sale. 

Now I have them growing everywhere in early spring, 
including the most surprising places. 

We have found them growing along all our woodland
paths, in the lawns, and under trees. 

They make excellent potted plants, too, 
and somehow find their way into 
my plants on the deck every year. 
The little seeds stick to my garden gloves :)

Of course, seed gathering requires seed packets! 

It's fun to make pretty Seed Packets to share 
with friends and loved ones. 

Click on the link for my tutorial.

Another favorite activity in late summer
is pressing flowers and leaves.

Here I have some Dusty Miller
all ready for the press.

These Dusty Miller plants are several years old
and bloom with pretty yellow flowers.

When picked and placed in water,
the flowers will last a long time.

They can even be dried in place.

The leaves make wonderful pressed 'trees'
for Christmas cards!

Here I have some pansies from earlier this spring.

Ramblin' Man made this large press for me.

I cut corrugated cardboard as 'spacers'.

This allows air to circulate.

Thin, flat flowers and leaves are best.

I use artist's sketch pad paper, cut to size,
to place the flowers on to 'blot' moisture.

I try not to overlap the flowers.

I cover them with a second piece of artist paper,
then a piece of corrugated cardboard.

I label each batch with name and date.

I use sticky notes and tags.

Pressed flowers will last for years
if stored flat on their papers
in a cool, dark drawer.

All put together tight. The flowers will be
ready in about 3 weeks.

I use them to make note-cards.

A little bit of scrapbook paper, bits of
burlap, ribbons or buttons,
some ink-stamps and pressed flowers
make mixed media cards.

Dusty Miller is featured on the top card.

Scissors with a decorative edge
cut borders.

Simple cards with keepsakes
from the garden <3

Another thing I love in late summer are berries!

Blueberries are so plentiful and inexpensive
in the markets right now, so I have
been freezing them on trays and bagging
them for baking and smoothies.

They are wonderful fresh in shortcake!

Blueberry - Lemon Tea Cake

I have a new recipe to share with you
next week - Blueberry Peach Crisp.

I can't tell you how good this is!


Summer is also a time for drying my roses. 

There is something so romantic
about dried roses.

They are so pretty as they dry.....

And as they are gathered in baskets
waiting to be used.

I use them to fill baskets and urns,
adorn packages, make wreaths,
and make home-made potpourri
from the petals for jars and sachets.

But by far, my favorite thing to do
this time of year, is taking woodland walks.

With my best friends.

Every evening we
take a little walk to discuss our day.

A time for reconnecting.....

And as the shadows get long at the end of the day
we count our blessings
for having this time together.

Each day a precious gift.


What are your favorite thing to do
on these long summer days, my friends?


Today I am joining Amy at Love Made My Home
for Five on Friday

Won't you join the fun?

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Flea Market Finds

Hello, Dear Friends, I hope you are enjoying 
your summer so far, and are staying cool. 

I promised you some Flea Market Finds
in my last post, so let me show you 
my treasures! 

My vintage step-ladder got some 
sweet little drawers to pretty it up. 

I planted them with white Impatiens.

My little potting bench....
The galvanized cans hold potting soil
and fertilizers.

I lined the drawers with small white trash bags
then aluminum foil on the bottom
 to form a drainage'tray'.

These will be indoor planters,
so I didn't add drainage holes.

Trim the bag around the top.
Leave some slack.....

Add small stones about an inch deep
 in the aluminum 'tray' for drainage.

Don't over-water these :)

The perfect country plant stand!

The vintage green toolbox 
was from the Etsy shop, Nana's Things
from AnnMarie's blog , Musings of a Vintage Junkie

It is perfect for holding seed packets. 
Etsy is like a giant flea market 
in the coziness of your own home! 

I also found some amazing galvanized containers. 
This one is perfect for holding my collection of 
drawer and shelf liners- waiting for me to clean my cupboards!

I found some galvanized trays
that are perfect for drying herbs
and rose petals :)

I found this tray, too. 

I hung it on the wall to hold 
my collection of  pale green ink bottles. 

The 'bunny' hanger was made
by my dear Mom and Dad as 
an Easter gift one year. 

My ink bottles fit perfectly :)

These are reproductions sold in a set
that I found a few years ago. 

The step-ladder makes a perfect plant stand
by the glass door. 

The galvanized tub underneath holds dog toys. 

 It brightens up my small alcove in the kitchen.

My hutch <3
One of a kind! Lol! 

I found these baby blocks, too :)

Ramblin' Man keeps the perpetual calendar up to date.

I  painted and decoupaged the wooden tray with paper napkins.

From the kitchen table....

I was so excited to find 
this little step-ladder, too! 

It fits perfectly under my spice rack
by the pantry. 

It has the most wonderful patina....

A creamy pale yellow. 

It goes so well with my hand-painted pantry cupboard. 

I found this cupboard years ago
for $25 on the side of the road. 

It was an old tool cabinet, and fairly beat up,
but a bit of paint made it the perfect pantry. 

The base coat is pale yellow, with dry brush-strokes 
of palest blue, then antiqued with watered down 
'burnt umber'. 

I stenciled an 'olive branch' on the front.

It also blends nicely with my cream colored
 Hoosier, 'Kitchen Queen' cabinet.

This small step-ladder will serve 
many purposes - extra seating, 
a side table, or plant stand.

It's too old to make a reliable step-ladder
and Ramblin' Man has forbidden me to use
it as such.

If only he listened to me the same way! Sigh....

But what have we here? 

The bottom drawer planter on my step-ladder
has been knocked over! 

We may have a clue who the culprit is by the 
evidence of the toy squirrel underneath......

Someone is hiding......Kai! 

How can you get angry at that sweet face? 

Here you go, I saved your squirrel....It's alright! xx

And the flowers were no worse for wear, 
although re-potting and clean up took a while! 

Now the tool box stays on the bottom rung
and the flowers are out of reach. 

Kai does not 'walk' anywhere. 
He runs and jumps and dances on two legs. 
He twirls like a circus dog....

Did you know that this breed of dog 
(American Eskimo) used to be 
named 'Spitz' and that during the 30's and 40's
they were used in vaudeville acts and circuses? 

The puppies were given away at circus entrances.

You can find more information on
American Eskimo Dogs Here

My dear Father told stories of his Grandfather
who farmed 800 acres and took his produce 
to Faneuil Hall in Boston to sell at the market.
I was raised near Boston and my ancestors
on my Father's side immigrated there in the late 1600's. 

His Grandfather had a little white dog
that accompanied him everywhere,
and my Father, as a boy,
remembered the dog sitting in the cab of 
the truck on the way to the market in the 30's and 40's.
I wonder if it was the same breed.......

My Father had Alzheimer's the last years
of his life and I couldn't ask when I
found Whitey Bear, my 1st American Eskimo.

Of course, I had to bring home a few pretty linens, too!

This lovely crocheted piece is destined to become
a sweet top someday :)

I'm picturing cream gauze with a square yoke.

I have plans for this colorful doily,
which I will share with you soon.

I can't pass up embroidered napkins.

Aren't they so pretty?

I foresee these as pillows, sachets, tray liners, etc.

Never as napkins!

I also found the perfect little project bag!

I collect straw bags and this one had such
pretty embroidery!

I felt that this would be perfect to leave out
just where it is, to keep handy for whatever
crochet or needlework project I am working on.

I found the large crocheted doily and linen fabric
inside. These will be made into a pillow :)

So much better than the basket I am using now!

And last, but not least, I found this embroidered,
cross-stitched linen tablecloth.

Red flowers.....

Perfect for the holidays!

Well, I hope you enjoyed seeing my Flea Market Finds,
Dear Friends!

Have you found any fun finds at the Flea Market lately?


Thank you so much for stopping by and having a chat!
It means so much to me!
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