Thursday, May 26, 2011

Puppy Dog Tails!

Time for another project!!  I love creating new baby gifts just as much as I love designing wedding flowers.  These are two of the most joyous occasions in a person's life and I am always thrilled to be a part of it!!  Recently I had the honor of creating this adorable blanket for a friend who is expecting a baby boy.  It was so refreshing to make a baby boy gift after being constantly surrounded by pink!  My little ones are very girly and it's very rare that we have any crafty projects that don't involve pink and purple and princesses.  :)

I have to admit though, I had a rough time deciding what type of fabric was cute enough for a baby boy!  Thank goodness I came across this puppy dog flannel at Jo Ann's.  The puppy print is a soft Snuggle flannel and the white is Alpine fleece.  In three corners I embroidered the cutest puppies I could find!  In the last corner I embroidered the baby's nickname "Geno".  What's better than a personalized gift?! 

These one of a kind embroidered baby blankets are such a joy to create.  My very first one was a Classic Pooh for my first baby.  I still have it - even though I didn't cut the fabric evenly and it is very lop-sided!  Now I'm trying to find a cute owl embroidery design to make a blanket for my newest edition.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Roses Are Red!

It's that time of the year again for the age old tradition of prom!  Styles in prom attire have changed drastically over the years; and the corsage was certainly not exempt from this evolution.  Originally the corsage referred to a small bunch of flowers worn on the bodice of a ladies dress.  Eventually the corsage became a small bunch of flowers pinned to the shoulder or waist of a dress, or pinned on a handbag.  Ancient Greeks wore corsages at weddings to ward off evil spirits. In our modern times corsages are given to the mother's and grandmother's of the bride to distinguish them from the rest of the wedding guests.  The tradition of giving a prom date a corsage came to be in the early twentieth century.  These corsages were typically pinned to the dress and have only recently become more popular as wrist corsages.

The first silk flower corsage I made was for my brother's prom date about 10 years ago. She wore a beautiful dark purple dress, so I decided to make her corsage bright and colorful.  I used bright magenta pink roses and purple ribbon.  I was so happy with how it looked on her - just stunning! 

I decided to make some corsages to start building my portfolio of silk flowers.  This wrist corsage features red sweetheart roses, white tulle, white accent flowers and silver ribbon.  Silk corsages are more lightweight than fresh flower corsages. They will also withstand all day / evening wear without getting wilted and limp.  Just as gorgeous in pictures as the real deal!! 

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Heaven Sent

My mom forwarded me this story today and I just had to share it!  Just warms my heart to think that a stranger went out of his way for this little girl.  I'm not exactly sure where this took place; but it brought me to tears!

Our 14-year-old dog Abbey died last month. The day after she passed away my 4-year-old daughter Meredith was crying and talking about how much she missed Abbey. She asked if we could write a letter to God so that when Abbey got to heaven, God would recognize her. I told her that I thought we could so, and she dictated these words:

Dear God,
Will you please take care of my dog? She died yesterday and is with you in heaven. I miss her very much. I am happy that you let me have her as my dog even though she got sick.
I hope you will play with her. She likes to swim and play with balls. I am sending a picture of her so when you see her you will know that she is my dog. I really miss her.
Love, Meredith

We put the letter in an envelope with a picture of Abbey and Meredith and addressed it to God/Heaven. We put our return address on it. Then Meredith pasted several stamps on the front of the envelope because she said it would take lots of stamps to get the letter all the way to heaven. That afternoon she dropped it into the letter box at the post office. A few days later, she asked if God had gotten the letter yet. I told her that I thought He had.

Yesterday, there was a package wrapped in gold paper on our front porch addressed, 'To Meredith' in an unfamiliar hand. Meredith opened it. Inside was a book by Mr. Rogers called, 'When a Pet Dies.' Taped to the inside front cover was the letter we had written to God in its opened envelope. On the opposite page was the picture of Abbey & Meredith and this note:

Dear Meredith,
Abbey arrived safely in heaven. Having the picture was a big help and I recognized her right away.
Abbey isn't sick anymore. Her spirit is here with me just like it stays in your heart. Abbey loved being your dog. Since we don't need our bodies in heaven, I don't have any pockets to keep your picture in so I am sending it back to you in this little book for you to keep and have something to remember Abbey by.
Thank you for the beautiful letter and thank your mother for helping you write it and sending it to me. What a wonderful mother you have. I picked her especially for you.  I send my blessings every day and remember that I love you very much. By the way, I'm easy to find. I am wherever there is love.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Who Are You?!

1. What type of diamond cut do you like? 
     Any diamond is gorgeous!!  But my favorite is either round brilliant cut or princess cut.

2. If you are married when is your anniversary. if not what month would you like to be married in?
     My anniversary is June 29. 

3. What were or would you like your wedding colors to be?
     My wedding color was Victorian Lilac, which is a very pretty muted lilac color.  I accented this color with peach, white and purple flowers.

4. How many bridesmaids did or would you have at your wedding?
    I had 4 bridesmaids - including the maid of honor.

5. How long have you been married?
    This year is 9 years!! 

Join my in this fun linky party!!


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Jungle Animal Mural

I wanted to share another project that I have been working on.  A new mom-to-be that I work with asked me to do a mural for her baby's room.  I am so excited to have this opportunity!  She and her husband do not know if they are expecting a boy or girl, so they are going with a gender neutral theme of animals.  This picture is just my sketch of what I would like to do on their wall - can't wait to get started on it!  Working on this project has me so motivated to do a collection of paintings specifically for baby rooms.  Hopefully I will be able to work on those paintings and get them listed on my Etsy shop - stay tuned!! 

Once I have the mural finished, I will update my Murals page with new pictures! 

Lil' Ballerina

For Mother's Day, I decided to get pictures taken with my girls as ballerinas.  Finding a little tutu for the baby at the last minute was a bit difficult, so I decided to try making one.   I was surprised at how easy this was and I love how it turned out!  All this required was some elastic and some tulle.  I measured the elastic around the baby's waist so it fit snugly but not too tight - then just tied a knot to connect it.  For the tulle, I used 2 spools of soft nylon tulle, 25 yards on each spool. Using 12" pieces of tulle, I knotted them around the elastic until the skirt was full.  Being a newby at this project, it took me about 2 hours from start to finish - but I will definitely be making more of these fun tutu's for my girls!!  Next time around will be more adventurous with different colors of tulle, ribbon and embellishments.

Check out our ballerina Mother's Day pics on the I Heart Decorating Facebook page - I'll be posting them a bit later today!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Yummy Pork Chops

I made this super easy recipe for my family a few weeks ago and just had to share it. Since I don't have a lot of time to prepare a meal during the weekdays, I am always on the look out for simple yet delicious dinners.  I came across this recipe in a 5 ingredient cookbook.  At first I wasn't sure if this was going to be good, the ingredients together did not sound very good!!  However, this was soooo yummy! 

What you will need:
6 boneless pork chop loins ( 1 inch thick )
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
1 package ( 6 oz ) crushed stuffing mix
1 can ( 21 oz ) apple pie filling with cinnamon

In a skillet, brown the pork chops in oil over medium-high heat.  Meanwhile, prepare the stuffing according to the package directions.  Spread pie filling into a greased 13 * 9 * 2 baking dish.  Place the browned pork chops on top; spoon the stuffing over the chops.

Cover and bake at 350' for 35 minutes.  Uncover and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 160'. 

Note - I could not find any apple pie filling with cinnamon; so I just bought regular apple pie filling and sprinkled some cinnamon over top.

Hope you enjoy this as much as my family did! 

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

May - month of the Lily of the Valley

My Lily of the Valley just starting to grow!

The birth flower for May is the delicate Lily of the Valley.  This tiny fragrant flower is also known as a May lily, May bells, ladder-to-heaven, and Our Lady's Tears.  In Christian legend the Lily of the Valley were created from Eve's tears after she and Adam were banned from the Garden of Eden.  Other legends state that Our Lady refers to Mary and the flowers sprang from her tears as Jesus was being crucified.  In religious artwork, the Lily of the Valley denotes humility and is a sign of Christ's second coming.

On May 1rst, known as May Day, the French traditionally sell Lily of the Valley in the streets. Charles IX of France was given this flower as a good luck charm on May 1, 1561.  He then began a tradition of giving the ladies of the court a Lily of the Valley each year on this date. 

In terms of wedding flowers, Lily of the Valley are among the top ten most popular flowers to use.  One downfall - they are usually very expensive to get fresh.  For example, 25 blooms of this delicate flower can cost around $150 or $200 wholesale; whereas you can get 75 stems of roses or 100 tulips for around the same price.  Now since I am a big promoter for silk wedding flowers - let me say tha you can get 25 stems of silk Lily of the Valley for approximately $50 - depending on the supplier and quality.  This is a huge cost saver and a more efficient way to get the beautiful elegance of this flower without breaking your budget.  With the recent Royal Wedding, Lily of the Valley are sure to gain even more interest in bouquets since Kate Middleton carried a lovely bouquet made entirely of this flower.