Thursday, May 23, 2013

Quick Lunch for a Hot and Muggy Summer Day...

My Yummy Un-lettuce Salad 
Yesterday was hot and muggy and I was working on orders all day. I was hoping for a slight breeze but there was nothing so I ended up bringing out the fan. I love living in Florida and the weather is usually nice but these are the days that even a Starbucks double shot can not give you enough energy to move through the dense warm air. I wanted a super quick lunch that was refreshing and crunchy. 

I usually make my own dressing but even something as easy as making dressing was just not happening. I looked in my fridge and pulled out a bunch of veggies and some leftover corn on the cob. I love lettuce but was just not feeling the lettuce vibe so back in the fridge it went. 

Salad Supreme Seasoning by McCormick
I cut up a cucumber after I spooned out the seeds, yucky seeds! Grated carrot, a roma tomato, red pepper and the corn removed from the cob was added to my big blue bowl. This is my favorite cheap plastic bowl from Walmart, it is the perfect size for a salad. I could not find a glass bowl the size I wanted, most were too small to toss a salad for one person. 

Raspberry Hazelnut Vinaigrette Dressing by Wish-Bone
I added a pinch of  kosher salt. I can not live without kosher salt so if you have not tried it please do or we can no longer be friends... just kidding. Fresh ground black pepper, a splash of Wish-Bone Raspberry Hazelnut Vinaigrette Dressing and a few shakes of McCormick Salad Supreme Seasoning were also added. This un-lettuce salad was awesome! It was sweet from the corn and acidic from the dressing. It took all of five minutes to make and you can add anything you want. Basically any leftovers even chicken would have been great! Check out McCormick and Wish-Bones websites for some tasty recipes by clicking in the link under the pics. Bon Appetit! 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


 This is a photo that a customer sent to me of her Alice in Wonderland Tea party. She ordered the "drink me" tags from my shop Lazy Day Cottage on etsy. It turned out so beautiful! I love the Eat Me cookie cake and the adorable rabbit spoon. I searched and found the porcelain bunny spoons at Sur la table for only 1.95 each! 

These sweet die cuts are a bargain for any tea party and can be found at my shop too! Less than 10 cents! $9.95 for a set of 100 scalloped round circles. You can use these as tags, seals, table confetti, or whatever your mind thinks up. 

Love these signs from Kute kardz on etsy. Perfect to add to an Alice themed party for under 20.00. Ready to ship in 3-5 days. 

Who says cufflinks are just for men...they are not! Woman can wear cufflinks and these would be perfect for anyone going mad! These are from Its All About The Print on etsy and are only 12.00.These are made to order and you can choose silver or bronze. 

These mini Mad Hatter Hats are great for decorating! Sold in sets of 5 by Marissa Harris on etsy you just can not live without them! I think they would make a great birthday cake topper! 

Okay, I'm shameless, these are also from my shop Lazy Day Cottage on etsy. What can I say? I love Alice in Wonderland! These postcard themed tags are great for gift tags or place cards. I can make them with other characters such as Alice or the Im Late Rabbit. They are less than 1.00 each when ordered in a set of six. 

I adore hand stamped anything but this spoon is the perfect pair for an divine cup of tea. One lump or two? You can find this and many other elegant gifts at Milk and Honey Luxuries on etsy. I could just look through their shop for hours! 

A tea party would not be complete without cupcakes. These bubbly pink cupcake toppers are the perfect addition to a yummy frosted cake. Each hand stamped topper features the Mad Hatter and is edged with ink for a vintage look. You can find them and other Wonderland themed items at my shop Lazy Day Cottage on etsy.  

I just adore this teapot ring!!! The detail is incredible for the size of the piece. I can just see myself wearing this to a tea party. You don't have to love Alice in Wonderland to love this stunning little beauty. It can be found at Le Petite Bon Bon on etsy. 

I hope you enjoyed all of the Alice in Wonderland themed goodies I shared with you today! I am ready to get out my tea cups and invite some friends over for a nice English tea. Enjoy! 

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Who Knows How Much An Inch Is Anyway?

Measuring Tape from Seasonalsupplies
This week we moved across the hall to a different apartment. It was the easiest move ever! We just packed a cabinet at a time and moved it to the new place. The thing I dreaded most was re hanging all of my curtains, shelves and frames. I like dramatic curtains so I always hang mine higher than the window line and have them touch the floor. A great tip for hanging curtains: I always buy 4 panels for a window that needs 2. I hang the rod about 16 inches wider than the window. This fools your eye to make it look like the window is much larger than it is. It is amazing how much this changes the look of the room and lets more light in. 

Yardstick Planter Box from Whiskyginger
So while hanging the curtains in the bedroom I forgot to measure the space from the curtain rod holder to the ceiling and I had already moved the ladder to the other side. Ask any handyman, my methods for measuring and hanging curtains are probably not correct by any standard but in the end they usually look okay. So I asked Jess to use the tape measure to get me the measurement. She said "17" or 18." I said it's kind of important to get it exact as you can. She responded, "Who knows how much an inch is anyway." We were exhausted and frustrated and probably should have waited to tackle that job. We just started laughing so hard. I said. "Well I know what an inch is." Typical womans answer, right? 

Vintage Ruler Cuts by Coolvintage
I was inspired to write this blog post after that little episode of gut busting laughter. But really, how much is an inch? Is an inch really important, is. An inch too low and my curtains would have sagged at one side. I am contacted by customers all over the world looking for paper tags from my shop. The photos of my items are all cropped and edited. An image of a tag that is 2 inches in length looks the same size as a photo of the Eiffel Tower when cropped. It is very misleading but not much can be done with the photos. Some  sellers include photos with a ruler which is a great idea. I make sure the measurements are included in the listing description. As an online buyer it is very important to read the wording in the listing.  

Antique Ruler Pendants by Clabbercreekstudio
At one point in my life I decided it would be a great idea if me and my Bestie opened a soap making business. In hindsight I realize this was not a smart move. We had never made soap and knew nothing about it. We got a recipe book from the library and bought all of the ingredients. We decided to make olive oil and lye soap infused with raspberry tea.  My bestie ordered some molds for soap on ebay. We mixed the lye outside on my driveway in my expensive Wolfgang Puck pots and pans, not smart! A little dripped on the driveway and I didn't even think anything of it until the next day when it was pitted with holes where the lye ate it away. We mixed the soap with the tea and it became this beautiful pink color and smelled amazing. The molds came in and were super tiny, they could have made soap for a dollhouse  We should have read the description and measurements. So in the end our soap turned out horrible. We had left the tea leaves in the soap and it eventually turned this disgusting brown color. After paying to fix the driveway, buy new pans and all of our expenses I was about 300.00 down and I had a years supply of the worlds most disgusting soap. Live and learn...but always read the size when buying online. 

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

My Etsy Coming Out Story...

I Love Etsy Pillow made by Pillowthrowdecor
What is Etsy? Wikipedia defines Etsy as an e-commerce website focused on handmade or vintage items as well as art and crafts supplies. I would agree with that but what does it mean for real? Founder Rob Kalin finally said he made the word up. Etsy was taken from the word, "etsi" in Italian meaning, "oh yes". Not sure if I believe that...but for now I will accept that answer. When I first perused Etsy over 3 years ago it was love at first "site" It was like the best craft fairs I had ever been to, open 24 hours a day, all in one spot. I have to admit countless hours were spent looking at things people made that I didn't even know existed. 

Etsy Addict Magnet by Allegrae
When I first found Etsy I was working nights at QVC and a coworker of mine was selling Artist trading cards online.  She would come to work and make her art while talking to customers on the phone. As I'm sure my old boss would not like me to say nights at QVC was our own little playground. People did every kind of craft imaginable, beading, crocheting, card making. I even saw someone plug in a little iron for her quilting. I can say from experience all the representatives were so calm from crafting there was rarely any problems. As the black sheep, reading my true crime novel, I watched my crafty co-workers and became intrigued. She crafted a whimsical little mermaid with sea shells glued to the bottom. I could have looked at it for hours. Like a little vacation in a tiny little picture. 

Original Artist Trading Card by Frances Perea
That weekend I went to Joanns craft store and lost my mind buying all kinds of paper for my new hobby. I dragged my bestie to the goodwill and our favorite antique shop for some old sheet music. What a find... sheet music for only 10 cents each. That is just something you could never have enough of. Glorious songs of yester year, stained with a beautiful vintage patina, smelling as if they were in someones piano bench for more time than I can relate. That weekend you could not see the ground in my craft room just confetti from my feverous cutting and pasting.

I Etsy when no one is looking button by Allegrae

I started selling on ebay just because I had already been selling antiques on there and was familiar with it. They changed the pricing structure after a few months and it just didn't work for me selling most items under 5.00. So I made the jump to Etsy and within one week I had my first sale. I was so excited! And from then on it didn't stop. I quit my day job at QVC to open my Etsy shop full time and haven't stopped since. I am coming out of the closet today and admitting my etsy addiction. If you have not checked out Etsy, please do, and join me in my Etsy fixation! Make sure you have a big cup of coffee, comfy pj's and the honeys credit card. Guaranteed to find something for everyone!

Mason Jar Thank You Tags from my shop LazyDayCottage

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Succulent Gardens by Rusty Gate Gardens

Vintage Typewriter Planted with Succulents
A few weeks ago we went to the Winter Springs Spring Fever in the Park Festival. This was our second year attending and we had a great time! We brought Harley, our mini dachshund, and she was surprisingly well behaved. She is an old girl who is not very social but she managed to enjoy herself without barking too much. Last year Jess bought me the most beautiful succulent garden made from a vintage frame. Its a year later and by some miracle its not only alive but thriving! 

Succulent Garden Planted in a Vintage Frame with Feet
The minute I saw this garden, I was in Love! It was so unique and I had never seen anything like it. The woman who makes them, Linda, from Rusty Gate Gardens has such an eye for putting things together. This is a vintage frame which she builds a base for and adds feet. A shabby chic paint effect is added for a beautiful look. I could stand in her booth forever! She tucks the most interesting treasures into each one of her gardens. This one has a rusty trowel and a little rock that says trust. 

Muffin Tin Garden
This year I was entranced by this adorable muffin tin! I kept coming back to it saying how cute it was. It reminded me of my mom who collected more muffin tins any one person would use in a lifetime. I was thinking I would have to be careful to avoid over watering but realized Linda had added holes for drainage in each cup. 

Retro Toaster Planter of Succulent Plants
This was so retro! A toaster...I don't think I could have ever envisioned a toaster as a planter but it works! I can totally see this in a kitchen. 

More adorable old shoe, now that is recycling!
Who doesn't have an old shoe lying around? What a great planter! 

Some more beautiful garden collections, a vintage tool box, old shoe and assorted glass containers.The tool box is fantastic! 

Anything can be a planter, even a funnel turned upside down. No need to worry about drainage here. This would look perfect on a country porch. 

I am kicking myself for not keeping my old mailbox. It had a perfect weathered patina perfect for plants. The footed frame in the photo is a smaller version of the one we bought. It really is an interesting conversation piece. Everyone who sees it, loves it!

I almost bought this! This hangs on the wall and I knew there would be no way the animals would get into it! 

I just bought a little tea set from an estate sale so that I can plant all the babies in it just like this. Our garden has grown so much in a year that we have had to do a major trimming. The great thing about succulents is that you can root them to grow easily. Please check out Linda's Facebook page Rusty Gate Gardens to see where she will be next. You will not want to miss a chance to see her beautiful creations!