Thursday, December 22, 2022

A Re-Purposed/Thrifted Kind of Christmas .....................................

💗  Greetings lovely friends & readers   🎄

 On my last trip down to Mum's when I bought home the Chest of Drawers ... I also bought some other oddments that no doubt would have ended up in the bin.  I decided to use a few of them for some Christmas decorating projects. 

I bought Mums last 2 houseplants home with me & the silver tray (above left) was sitting under one of the plants.  It was "toss-able" as The Mr would say.  I sanded the rusty parts lightly & then gave it 2 coats of chalk paint in the colour Pumice.  

I mod-podged on a scrap of music paper, stamped the word JOY & then fashioned a wreath from a branch off a Christmas tree.  My friend Gail gave me the tree branch as the Op Shop were going to bin it.  I added some berries & a ribbon & lightly sanded the tray edges ... I really LoVe how this turned out 💗

I've hung it on the wall above a small display using one of the Op-shopped plates from this post * Here *.  And YeS I really did make Santa hats for my miniature teddies !!!! 😉 (Click to enlarge for a closer view)

Mum had a large stack of books in the spare room wardrobe - these had belonged to my Dad & he has now been gone for 22 years so I decided it was high time they got donated!!  I bought 6 home with me - glued 3 together, painted with Forest Green chalk paint & then glued on a small decal that I've had FOR ever.

I painted over the entire thing again,  then tied it up with a scrap of ribbon, tucked in some greenery & berries & added a wee tag to the bow.  A book bundle for the princely sum of $0 !!

I forgot to take a "before pic" but this tatty tray was in Mums wardrobe too.  I painted it with Linen chalk paint, then decided this was entirely the wrong colour for the transfer I wanted to apply.  So I painted it with black & then added red to the edges, lightly sanding for a more vintage look. 

I've had this transfer for 2 Christmas's now  ...  I first used it on the mirror in * this post * & absolutely love it.  It is no longer in stock so I wanted to use it for something special. I applied some of it to the frame & am so pleased with how it looks.
(The transfer is by Iron Orchid designs)

This rusty saw was $5 at the SPCA Op-shop in Mum's town. I painted it black, oiled the handle & then added another section of the transfer to it.  

This old aluminum cooking pot was in Mum's shed.  I painted it with chalk paint - Country Clay - & then added yet more of the transfer to it.  It is just perfect to sit my wee artificial tree in with a block of wood inside to prop it up a bit higher.  🎄

My entire thrifted/upcycled/repurposed display arranged together on an old trunk.  The only purchased item was the Woodland Scene Teatowel which I have used as a table runner.  

I had really wanted a Reindeer to complete the scene but at $90 + in the stores it was way out of my budget.  Then I remembered this leather one I had gifted to The Mr many years ago. I found it in his shed, the leather had gone mildewy but I was able to clean it & give it a good oil.  This will be staying inside once Christmas is all packed away.

  I encourage you dear friends ... to think outside the square.  You do not have to spend big money on Christmas decorating.  I have a couple more items that I would love to share but I feel this post is waayyy long enough so I will share those after Christmas. 

I am a creature of habit - I bake the same items each year,  those that I know & are simple.  Mars Bar Slice, Chocolate Fudge Cake & Gingernut bites.  These have been all packaged up & gifted to local friends, whom I share baking with.  The black/white striped boxes were again in Mum's wardrobe so I tizzied them up with paper doilies & a tag to present the baking in. 

I keep my eye out in Op Shops for little Christmas tins also - these are often 50 cents each & perfect for presenting baking in. 

This is my last post before I head to Mum's tomorrow dear friends,

I am hoping to be back next week with a final post before the New Year.

I would like to wish you All a most wonderful, safe & happy festive season & to thank you all with all my heart for your visits to my little corner of cyberspace & the lovely comments you take the time to leave me ... it truly warms my heart more than you will ever know.

Remember to be kind to yourselves & to each other,

With much love & friendship to you All,

Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0

Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Christmas Prep ........................................

Greetings lovely friends & readers

          Well the 1st December came & went in the blink of an eye.

  I got my Grandson's advent calendars filled for another year & delivered to them in time.   It is getting trickier as they get older, to find things small enough to fit in those tiny stockings.


I have had to be a bit inventive & found I could tie the larger size packages to the peg with some string &                                                                then clip the stocking over the top. 

  I keep a written sheet for myself, so I know each day what they will be opening.  It would seem - from checking in with his parents - that Alec has done a bit of a re-shuffle with some of his 😉

A couple of weeks ago, Spotlight had huge reductions on all their Hessian so I treated myself to another length for my decking table.  

Every time I walk outside that $6 length of fabric just brings me so much pleasure.  I tizzied up the table a bit for Christmas & the red petunias just set everything off nicely.  💗

While I was placing my online Order I thought I would re-cover my outdoor cushions as well - they were looking quite a bit "worse for wear".   I decided to purchase the doiley print this time round & had great difficulty getting to actually Sew it  ... due to a certain Ginger Miss who thought it made a lovely soft sleeping spot when I was down on the floor cutting it all out !!

Finally I got them both done & am so pleased with the end result.  Yes of Course she had to test it out for comfort &                                              snugability !! Look at her there with her ample proportions lovely furry tummy!!

I received another order for my potpourri from Brandy's Botanicals - it seems to be very popular this Christmas.  I have been experimenting with drying some Calendula flowers in my Dehydrator - they don't take long so you have to keep an eye on them or they shrivel too much.  They add such a nice pop of colour to my citrus potpourri.

I've been re-doing my coffee table display for Christmas & filled a lovely silver plated dish with some of my fresh potpourri.  I will show my festive coffee table in my next post. 

Our craft group had our end of year Outing.  We went to Cambridge to view the Christmas display in the town hall which was wonderful.  I wanted to gift the ladies a little treat each - last year I did the Soaps wrapped in Dishcloths.   I had some peat pots that I'd recently painted roughly with white chalk paint so I stood at my kitchen bench & decoupaged paper serviettes onto them using mod-podge.  It was a fun, simple craft & looked effective.

I had planned to fill the pots with baked treats but simply ran out of time & energy.  The Warehouse had large boxes of Ferrero Rocher choccies on sale so I purchased one to fill my pots, then wrapped them in cellophane with a Christmassy tag.  The ladies were delighted.  Let me tell you dear friends .... quite a few of those choccy treats landed in my mouth while I was putting these together !!!! 😏  I've no idea how !!!

Sid has 3 new family members of the 2-legged variety.  My son Kayne has built this wonderful hen-house & they have 3 baby hens.  Sid has named his one (pictured above) Frankfurter (!!!), Sid's Mum has named hers Gertrude, & my son has named his Wingy 😉 .. I shall try not to fill my future posts with too many chicken photos.  

I had started my Christmas preparations early this year (mid November) but it still feels like it's going to be a mad rush to the end.  We are having our family Christmas this weekend as I will be travelling down to spend Christmas Day with Mum at the Resthome.  I will be back before then with another post.  I hope the lead-up is going okay for you all.  Remember to pause, to breathe & to try & enjoy the festivities.  (Yes - hark at me talking 😏)

Thank you, as always, for your visits here today,

With much love & friendship to you all,

Love Julie & the furry ones x0x0x

Saturday, December 3, 2022

My Childhood Chest of Drawers

Greetings lovely friends & readers

On my last trip to Mum's, when I told my brother I would be taking home the old chest of drawers out in Mum's shed, he said some words I can't actually print on here 😉 ... but their interpretation went something like "was I barking mad?!"  No I was not !

It took some effort on my part to load them into my vehicle as they are native timber & not exactly light ... but I was determined.

This chest of drawers was used by my brother & I for the first 5 years of our life as we shared a bedroom together.  Eventually we got our own bedrooms & I think he used this for awhile longer before it got moved out to Dad's shed & became home to all his painting & wallpapering gear.  You see my Dad was a painter & paperhanger.  When I got the drawers home & loaded onto my deck I realised they were probably in much worse state than I had envisioned.  But that's okay - I still had a "plan". 😉😶

The drawers & the sides of the unit were full of borer holes.  I sanded & stripped the wood - it took me a week but that wasn't continually working on it - that was walking away from it quite often !!
I treated it by spraying with kerosene to kill any live borer lavae.  Then I set about filling all those borer holes with wood putty.  Believe me friends, there were about a gazillion of them !!

Lastly I oiled the wood using a woodstain that I already had on hand.  It has actually turned out darker than I wanted but I am fairly sure where I have placed it - on my covered deck area - it will soon lighten a bit & fade.  The stain looks patchy here but it is not this bad in real life.  I also replaced the 5 handles with new ones as they were broken.  I wanted a simple handle - nothing too fancy.  

My "plan" for this chest of drawers & my "vision" was to use it to house all my garden supplies.  These were previously sitting on our old dog kennel & often looked messy/unsightly when you walked up our deck steps.

Everything fitted in perfectly & I also ran an old candle along the base of the drawers as the wax helps them to glide open & closed easily.  I was really pleased with how it turned out but felt it needed "something more" ..............

I ended up purchasing this botanical transfer from * this * gorgeous shop & I think it just finished it all off nicely.  I am really pleased with how these drawers turned out & the fact that they are so useful is a double blessing.  

Safely under cover on my deck area & out of any weather.

Attractive as well as useful at the same time 💚

I also washed all my china plates & replaced a couple that had big chips/cracks in them using the plates I op-shopped in * this post * for $2 each. 

"Beautical Sunray Pink Petunia" in my wrought iron chair planter - a gift from my friend Julie 💗

Lastly dear friends - I absolutely LoVe this photo above - look at the body language on Sid! Could he sit much further away? 😊 He is not especially fond of Santa, but he thought there might be a toy involved so he persevered. Makes me smile everytime I look at it.

Thank you as always dear friends, for your visits here today,

Enjoy the weekend, remember to be kind to yourselves & to each other,

With much love & friendship to you all,

Julie & the furry ones x0x0x