A Quick BFF Gift

A few weeks ago I made a couple of water bottles for a gal I work with and myself to help remind us to drink our water everyday.  My best friend absolutely loved them!  So I couldn’t help myself…I had to make her and I some matching water bottles too!!

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Of course I can’t do any projects with out a helper, so here is my helper pic of the day! Isn’t she a doll baby!?  I just love that sweet Harley!

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I was super happy with the finished product!  My other bottle has held up really well with hand washing, so I hope these do the same.

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I must also tell you that this was all a surprise for my bestie!  I just dropped this package off on her doorstep while she was at work today.  We will all have to wait and see what she thinks!

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Mom’s Succulent Birthday

I am so in love with the hanging succulent gardens all over the web.  I am sure you remember the one I made for my kitchen a few months ago. (Read about how we made it here)  When my parents came to visit, my sweet momma commented on how much she liked it…and a light bulb came on above my head!

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My parents live in beautiful sunny Florida and have the absolute perfect weather for growing succulents!  When momma’s birthday rolled around Hubs and I got busy making her a beautiful succulent garden of her own.

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Mom’s hanging garden was designed to hang on her screened-in porch by the pool, and it much larger than mine (2ft x 3ft).  We built the hanging box here in GA and traveled it down to Orlando on our last visit.  I took mom to the local home improvement store to let her pick her color and her plants.  M and Hubs helped get it painted, get the plants planted, and get it hung on the porch before mom came home from work.

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Of course her hanging succulent garden is thriving and doing well with all the sun in Orlando.  And I am sure momma loves having something beautiful to watch grow.

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Father’s Day Gift Giving

I know it is WAY past Father’s Day, but I still wanted to share this simple little gift we made for my daddy.  My parents live in beautiful, sunny Florida and spend many weekends at the beach.  We thought this cute little beach cooler would be the perfect gift for daddy.

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We picked up a simple personal cooler at Wally-world and then took some time personalizing it.  I used  my Silhouette to cut out special vinyl quotes and shapes to add our personal touch.

It started plain and boring like this:

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But we had a blast turning it into a one of a kind that looked like this:

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We loved filling it with some special beach goodies too! Included in the cooler are:  a beach towel, spray sunscreen, face sunscreen bar, a water bottle, and two cases of dad’s favorite “smartie juice” (its really Tampico juice, but it tastes just like the Smarties candies!).

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Dad loved his gift and put it to use right away!  We loved the visit to FL, and the time at the beach in the sun!

Homemade Mother’s Day

Today is Mother’s Day, a day to honor our mothers, but I hope that you all honor your mothers every single day of the year.  Mothers are the most selfless people I know, and they deserve to be pampered every day!

I am sad to not be with my momma today, but I know I will be down to see her in a couple of weeks.  We made her something super special for her back screened porch, but you will have to wait to see that!

Hubs is actually blessed to have two mothers!  He was adopted and is so lucky to still have a relationship with both of his mothers.  We wanted to give them a little something to show them that we love them, and appreciate them both.

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How super cute is that!?  We had a great time building these special little gifts, and actually had a helper that day too!  My nephew came over for a little while, and was eager to make one for his momma too.  So here is the skinny…

I started by painting my mason jars (pint size) with off-white spray Krylon spray paint.

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To give the mason jars an antiqued look, after they dried, I lightly sanded the high spots on the jars.

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Meanwhile….in the driveway….Hubs and Nephew were busy building the boxes/trays to hold the jars.  They cut cedar wood planks down to size (2 inches high, 12 x 4 inches perimeter).

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After everything was cut, they used the nail gun to put everything together securely and then used the air-sander to smooth the edges.

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Finally we put a coat of stain on the boxes, and set them aside to dry.

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We then filled our mason jars with soil and plants.

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The last little personal touch, was made by cutting out vinyl quotes on my Silhouette Cameo.  I will give you more details on how I did that later.

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I was so happy with the final look!  They are super cute for a kitchen window seal, front porch table, or even dining room table.

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I was so proud of my nephew’s hard work, and he was so excited to give his to his momma today!

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Happy Mother’s Day to all the mother’s out there!

Weekends Full of Weddings

We are so blessed to have so many amazing friends.  In the past two weekends we have gotten all dressed up to attend the weddings of two of Hub’s dearest friends.

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For both wedding couples we wanted to give them a heartfelt gift that had special meaning.  I made these personalized gifts for our friends, and loved how they turned out so much that I plan on making one for our home too!

I grabbed a 11×14 frame from the store with a 8×10 matte.

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I used the canvas from some painter’s drop cloth, and projected an image I had created on my computer. 

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I used my trusty old Sharpie marker to trace my design onto the canvas.

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Finally, I trimmed the canvas and placed it in the frame.  I am in love with the final look.

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Both the Dunahoo and Kern weddings were so beautiful and perfectly suited for each sweet couple.  We had a blast at both wedding celebrations and feel so blessed to have been a part of these special days.  Hubs and I wish these newlyweds all the best!

PS – I just had to add this pic of Hubs getting ready…isn’t he so handsome? ;0)

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Apple Week ~ Crock Pot Cinnamon Apple Butter

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Welcome back to day three of Apple Week.  We are spending the week sharing many of the recipes we made from all of our Apple Farm Pickings.

Today I am going to share the yummy yummy crock pot cinnamon apple butter! 

We started by washing our apples really good (using the method described here).

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Then I diced, and cored, and diced, and cored, and diced…but did NOT peel…8 apples. I filled up my crock-pot with all my diced apples.

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Then I covered my apples with 1 teaspoon of lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon of ground cloves, and 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg.  I wish you had smell-a-vision right now!

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Then I took some of the most delicious apple cider, which we bought at the apple farm, and poured three cups over the apples.  They should be covered, but not swimming.  Then I set the crock-pot to low and let it do it’s job overnight (12 – 15 hours).  The next morning I put the apple mixture in the blender and processed until smooth.

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Here are a couple of things to take note of:

1.  If the apple cutter is still a little watery after processing, you can put it into a pot and cook over medium heat for 10 – 15 minutes until thickened.

2.  Store the apple butter in the fridge in an air-tight container.

3.  The apple butter will stay fresh for 3 – 4 weeks.

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I used a coffee filter and a label I printed off to add a couple finishing touches to my super delicious jar of homemade crock pot cinnamon apple butter.

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Gift Updates

You may remember our homemade Mother’s Day and Father’s Day gifts.  I didn’t ship them to Orlando because they were fragile and heavy, so we took them with us on our vacation. 

Joe and I hung momma’s pet prints while she was at work.  She was so excited to see them on the wall when she got home.

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I left the men to do the heavy lifting of getting the airplane up on the wall.  Joe’s OCD really came in handy for this job. :0)  I think the B-17 looks great in dad’s WWII room!

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I am so glad they are finally getting to enjoy their Mother’s and Father’s day gifts! :0)