Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Spooky Birthday Breakfast ☻


 Come on in!!!
We recently had a 'Spooky Birthday Breakfast'
for my #2 grandson, who just turned 12.

At the front entrance of the house, just to set the theme, I stuck white paper dots from the stationary section onto
this lightweight black pumpkin from Walmart.
I tied it with a bow &
hung it on my shepherds hook.  I bring it in if it looks like
rain, as the dots aren't waterproof.   Maybe next year,
I'll paint it!


 We comfortably fit all seven members of the family at the square table in the sunroom for bacon & eggs & Belgium waffles after church.


Happy Halloween placemats set the tone & a creepy look black crow watched over the event.
A battery operated candle is inside the witch's hat.
I NEVER use open flames around the children!


The grandkidlets found creepy spider rings hanging onto their orange juice glasses.


 I'm sure getting my money's worth out of these Dollar Tree Birthday glasses! 
They go beautifully with any colors I have on the table.


 I set the table with plain white plates with little bowls to be used for either fresh fruit or ice cream served later with birthday cake.


 I found these cute little "Boo" hand towels at Tuesday Morning.
I prefer gently "scary" things at Halloween & this little ghost fit the bill.



Quite frankly, the spiders & snakes really gross me out, 
but I knew the grandsons would get a kick out of them.
Ms. C. wasn't too thrilled with them.







She & I & her mother enjoyed a soothing cuppa tea from this darling Halloween teapot.



 I've done this kind of theme for my grandson's birthday before, with lots more creepy foods.
You can see & read about it HERE.

I just can't get away from it when his birthday is so close to Halloween!

I'm finally fully recovered from my was a doozy!
Thanks for all the "get well" wishes.

I'm joining Cuisine Kathleen for her "Let's Dish" party tonight as well as
Yvonne at StoneGable for "Tutorials, Tips & Tidbits" tomorrow &
Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for "Tablescape Thursday".
I'll be with The Tablescaper for "Seasonal Sundays".

Come check out these fun parties for lots more ideas!
Thanks for stopping by The Gazebo House.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

American Girl Doll Clothes


My granddaughter, Ms. C., has American Girl dolls at her house to play with.

I use Target's knock off versions, "My Generation" dolls here
for fitting & modeling purposes when I make clothes for them.
(did you notice the chopsticks I taped to her hand?)

They are the exact same size.  The only differences that I can 
discern are the missing front teeth & the hair on the Target dolls is of a less silky quality.  
Otherwise, they make perfect models!


 Directions for making the Halloween mask can be found HERE
I used glittered felt, which doesn't show up too
well in the photo.  It also had to be trimmed down to size
a wee bit from the pattern given.

 The pattern for this Chinese costume is from Joan Hinds'
book,  Sew the International Wardrobe for 18-Inch Dolls

 It is the same book I used to make these Irish Step-Dance outfits


(blogged about HERE)


This silky satin was NOT fun to work with! 

It is VERY prone to raveling & it also couldn't be
ironed very easily...melted at a fairly low temp &
didn't take a crease very well either. 

It was a bundled pack of fat quarters from Joann's, which was tied up in ribbons & fastened with the little
frog closure, seen above.  

I decided to use it for the closure on the doll's kimono top.
"Motherrr, you never throw anything away!"


Since Ms. C. is very much into gymnastics & dance these days, I made her dolls a leotard from a swimsuit pattern I found for free online. 
Directions for leotard/swimsuit can be found HERE.

I would advise you to cut the pattern at least 1/4" bigger than printed & to also use the lower neckline version

or it will be very difficult for any child to get it onto the doll.
I even struggled with it!


Ms. C. requested a matching pair of "Booty Shorts"...
~insert rolled eyes~~
I used a standard doll sized pants pattern & tried to shorten it enough to comply with her request. 

 I think I hemmed them TWICE after this picture was taken,
in order to get them short enough to satisfy my * mini wardrobe coordinator*.  She is definitely developing her own sense of style!  

Thanks so much for stopping by The Gazebo House today.

I'm linking up with Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for her Metamorphosis Monday as well as
Yvonne at StoneGable for her Tutorials, Tips & Tidbits on Thursday and
The Tablescaper's Seasonal Sundays meme.

I hope you'll also visit these lovely ladies & join the fun!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

More Quilts from the Streetsboro Quilt Show


I've been sick with a horrid cold all week,
and haven't sewn a single stitch!

I'll just have to share some more of the
beautiful quilts from the Streetsboro Quilt Show!


I thought this one was especially cute...
Sunbonnet Sue in various Witch outfits!


Reminds me of our weather lately...wet & W-I-N-D-Y!!


The cobalt blue used in this beautiful patriotic quilt
 was very striking and
 we loved the ribbon border treatment she used on it.


 I think the narrow one, above, 
was one of a matching pair but I only
captured a photo of one of them.


I really liked this cardinal quilt!!  

Cardinals are the state bird of Ohio.
It reminded me of Charley Harper's art work...he does similar red birds.

Also my sewing friend, Carol, did a cute little interpretation of his work that she 
called:  "Ode to Charley Harper" by mamacjt


The Santa & Penguin quilt had lots of 3 dimensional
aspects to it.
I wish my camera would have captured
the glittery segments as well 
as the trapunto of each penguin.  
Ms. C. got a kick out of this one!


A gal in my quilt guild got an award for this pink & brown 
quilt & she brought
it to our meeting on Monday evening.  
I told her it reminds me of "Chocolate & Strawberries".

My photos do not do it justice!
She quilted it herself on her own long arm machine.
Just Beautiful!!!


 This was a very small wallhanging, all done in wool applique.
Every single little red petal was stitched into place with what appeared to be a French knot.  Gorgeous!


Can you see the little card with the pointed finger on it?
Look in the lower right hand side.
That was to indicate where you were permitted to touch the clothespin attached to the quilt so you could lift it up to see the back to admire the incredible work that went into it.     Amazing!


 I loved all these quilts with their vibrant colors &  movement!  I like the bright, happy colors!

I hope you enjoyed the show.
I wish I could have captured a photo of each & every entry for you to see.

Thanks for stopping by The Gazebo House today.

I'll be linking this post to several online parties:
Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for MM,
Yvonne at StoneGable for Tutorials, Tips & Tidbits,
The Tablescaper for Seasonal Sundays
Please be sure to visit these wonderful ladies so you don't miss out on all the fun!


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

♫♫ Happy Birthday, Michael Lee!! ♫♫

Happy 60th Birthday to one of the funniest, most generous,  creative & prolific writers I know!

(who doesn't look a day over 35 & I'm told by a close relative, does not have a single grey hair yet!)

The Novel Bakers have gathered a
few friends together today, 
to wish Michael Lee West
a very "HAPPY 60th BIRTHDAY!!"

With each new book she writes,
her stories get you more & more involved,

until you’ve fallen in love with each of her characters and

feel like you know them,

Her kitchen adventures are just as entertaining, too.

You never know what type of culinary concoction she’ll whip up for her extremely popular “Foodie Friday” blog party each week.

She is really an outdoor girl, at heart,
with precious poochies & farm animals...ducks & goats, a mule, some lambs & chickens galore.

Although this year, I think she should have stayed indoors more!  
(mosquitoes & ticks seem to LOVE her as much as we do!)

 In honor of ML's big birthday bash, I set a very autumnal tablescape with all the rich, deep colors of fall to celebrate her birth month of October.


Browns & orange with deep purples & reds...all the colors of the leaves at this time of least, up here in the northern half of our country, anyway.  I don't know about her state of Tennessee.


I mixed the good crystal & china with some decorative salad plates from Walmart.
Michael Lee was the first person to make me feel like that was okay to do.
She uses Big Lots white dishes along with her exquisite heirlooms all the time!


I pulled out the Dollar Tree "Happy Birthday" wine glasses...these have every color
in the rainbow & match any tablescape beautifully.
They're so fun & festive...they just make you smile!


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The wooden napkin rings have carved leaves on them & they match the brown chargers.

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The heavy cream linen napkins echo the cream china with gold rims... ("Eternal" by Lenox).


The centerpiece is VERY special to me!

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This cut glass basket was my Mother's...
it was a wedding gift & is almost 80 years old.
It sat on top of her refrigerator for as long as 
I can remember.

I think my Mom kept it up high so it would be out of the reach of her 8 kids!  LOL

Before she died, my Mom gave it to my oldest brother, 
who now lives in Kerrville, TX.  
His wife recently sent it to me to treasure & pass on in the family.  
Thank you Chuck & Liz!

To say I was thrilled is an understatement


 I told Ms. C. all about it & explained to her how she would eventually get to own it & how she would have to promise to be very careful with it.

Family & heirloom treasures are very important to Michael Lee, too & something she incorporates into all her novels.
The tales of various family cooking adventures in "Consuming Passions" are hilarious! 

I have filled my basket with beaded fruits that remind me of my childhood as well, as we had a neighbor who used to make these types of fruits by hand. 

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 The pillar candles, in my Ralph Lauren candlesticks,
 have a wonderful mulled cider fragrance to them that fills the house with the scent of autumn.

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Familiar scents can trigger waves of nostalgia & this is a very nostalgic post, full of family & memories, just like
ML's books.

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I was surprised at how perfectly the beaded grapes echo the patterns on the plates. 

I hadn't noticed that until after I took the photos.
I love those little bits of serendipity that the camera finds!

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  A double decanter wine carrier, holds two bottles of white wine so we can celebrate Michael Lee's birthday properly. 


In hindsight, I think CHAMPAGNE would be more appropriate!

 (but the wine bottles matched the color scheme so well)

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Now, if you've read ANY of Michael Lee's books, you'll know that PEACHES
figure very heavily in many of her stories.

A frequent main character in her books, Teeny, is after all, a very Southern Michael Lee!

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Instead of making her a Birthday Cake...
(I've already tried her recipe for Vanilla Peach Coffee Cake here )
I peeled & chopped those peaches, 
added 1/2 C. of sugar & 3 tablespoons of flour to them.

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Plopped them into a pie shell & this time,
I wasn't taking any chances on trying to get fancy with cut-out leaves...
(remember THIS DISASTER?) 

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I just used my cute little pie bird from Sur la Table.  

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Doesn't he look like he is singing 
"Happy Birthday to Youuuu"? 

Perfect Peach Pie for a Sweet Southern Belle!
(peach was my Dad's favorite pie, ya' know)

Thank You, Michael Lee, for all the ideas & inspiration
you've provided over the years! 

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Be sure to stop by Michael Lee's wonderfully entertaining blog, Rattlebridge Farm, to wish her “Happy Birthday” & see what she is cooking up for the next decade of her life.

Also, try to find time to visit all the other participants who are doing special blog posts to honor Michael Lee today.  They are the following:

 Jain~ a quiet life
Kitty~ Kitty’s Kozy Kitchen
Sarah~ Hyacinths for the Soul
Sam~ My Carolina Kitchen
Rett~ The Gazebo House
Jenna~ The Painted Apron
Lynn~ Happier Than A Pig In Mud
Linda~ More Fun Less Laundry
Debbie~ Mountain Breaths
Jacqueline~ Purple Chocolat Home
Pattie~ Olla-Podrida
Pam~ Sidewalk Shoes
Mary~ Home is Where the Boat Is

  Susan~Between Naps on the Porch

Thank you to both Jain & Mary for organizing this very "NOVEL" virtual surprise party for Michael Lee.

“HAPPY BIRTHDAY, ML…may you have many, many more happy & healthy years to celebrate in your beautiful new home.”

I'm joining Yvonne at Stonegable for Tutorials, Tips & Tidbits,
Susan at Between Naps on the Porch for "Tablescape Thursday",
Michael Lee for "Foodie Friday",
Cuisine Kathleen for "Let's Dish" & The Tablescaper for "Seasonal Sundays"