A patched together lifestyle of thrift and charm...

Dec 31, 2015

Cutest Post of 2015 (Most Popular too) - A Kid's Cottage...

In case you missed it - I'm reposting my most popular post from this year.  And it's not at all about me or anything I've done.  Rather - it's all about these cute little owner-designed cottages for kids by an online friend of mine.  Take a peek...

Today I'm sharing a little small business love.  
I'd like to introduce you to this awesome kid's cottage
 that can be assembled by the kids themselves.  
Is that genius or what?
 What a great way to foster creativity and working together...

And what child doesn't love a great play house?
These are available in pine or cedar - just adorable.
Business owners Matthew and Jeremy would be
 happy to answer any questions I'm sure.
Check out their Kid Cottage Kits website.
 And one more parting shot of all that cuteness...

Photos used by permission.
Yay for the God-given ability to design and learn.
 What a fun 'toy' to keep at Gramma's! ~Joyce

Maybe I should make this a blog about highlighting others' great creativity!  :)  

For sure I'll have to do more sharing in 2016 - so keep checking back...

Dec 29, 2015

Herbal Tea on the Cheap...

Do you enjoy herbal teas?  Do you like peppermint and chamomile?  
Do you want to save up to $67 per year just on tea?
Or over $130 if you drink 2 cups per day?  Yes really!!

Did you know that you can get these flavors at Dollar Tree? 
 Did you know that they cost just $1 per box and that a box has 
30 tea bags inside (not just 18 or 20!)? 
And did you know that it tastes great?   Truly!!!
 Not at all a paid advertisement - just passing a long a frugal tip.

And people say saving a dollar or 2 here or there isn't that big a deal...

Think again my friends - think again.
 Happy Tea Drinking!  ~Joyce

Dec 28, 2015

Christmas Trimmings...

 As I was cleaning up from our family Christmas gift giving - 
I was struck by the beauty of the now 'used' trimmings...

The ribbons and papers were handled with love to adorn a gift
 given as a token of love.  How could I just quickly toss them in the trash?

This sweet wire flower adorned a gift for me from my daughter.
  She didn't even call my attention to it.  But you can be sure I noticed.  
She made it with 'some wire she had laying around'.   
And it doesn't seem she had any intention that I'd keep it.
But keep it I surely will!

And while I did my share of tossing - I also did my share of salvaging.   
I can never toss out pretty ribbon and this sheer red is a beauty.  
And gold snowflake tissue paper?  Gotta keep some of that too...

Sorry if this all makes me sound cheap.  But oh how I love trimmings.
Do you recycle gift wrap?  Gift bags?  Ribbons?  Bows?  
I have my very own trimmings stash-heaven!
Merry Christmas to me all over again...   ~Joyce

Dec 26, 2015

Winter Sale in the Shop....

Hi friends!  It's been a good year on Etsy.  
 I'd like to thank you by offering an end of year sale... 
15% off anything starting at $9.99.   
The shop is well stocked with almost 90 items!

Your coupon code to use....   15endofyear15


  Head on over to the shop now!!!  Sale ends January 1, 2016.
And thank you for an awesome 2015!!!



Dec 23, 2015

Christmasy Things - Decoratin' and Craftin'...

 This post is long overdue and with Christmas just 2 days away -
 it'll be food for thought for next year at this point.  But alas - 
 sharing some things  from around my home in the past weeks...

My family rooms show my 'country' side.  The terrarium is
 outfitted with trees and ornaments all nestled on a bed of red plaid.... 

Picked up these deer at a yard sale this fall for $1-$2 each...

The mini prim ornaments were just 50 cents for the whole bunch (4 of them)...

Across the room - I adorned the grapevine wreath with a faux tree branch.  
The bow, etc. help to hide some of its center hardware...

Due to time restraints - I decided to  'add' some seasonal decor to
 my old cupboard top rather than completely redoing what was there...

 I had a few baskets with nothing in them - couldn't have that -
So more faux tree branches and ornaments to the resuce...
(Notice the deer in there?  It came from the same yard sale as the ones mentioned earlier.)

My kitchen usually gets a spray of lighted garland across the counter.   
When I don't have time for much else - 
this says 'Christmas' while we enjoy our evening dinners...

 Also took time to do a very small craft.  
Christmas cards from last year became some sweet ornaments...

I glued popsicle sticks to the cards covering the section I thought was pretty.  
(why popsicle sticks?  cause I had them... )
Then cut around the edges and sanded edges to distress.  
I gave edges and backs a light coat of glaze that I wiped off.  
Last - glued on some waxed string with a looped knot in center...

...and I think they're kinda cute.  Would make great package
 adornments and I just may use them as such!

Merry Christmas my friends!  Stay calm and remember 
the manger that led to the cross and resurrection... 
Our opportunity for an eternity in heaven if we give our 
lives in response.   And it's my hope that you have!

Dec 10, 2015

Christmas Shopping - Off the Beaten Path...

 We have 'Best Kept Secret' Tours in our area.  These are tours that 
take you to local businesses and shops that are 'off the beaten path'
 or might not be as well known.  Today I did the Christmas shop tour - 
12 shops in 1 day.  Actually more - because we stopped at some 'extra' shops along the way.

These are a few scenes from my day...

 Our first stop - a consignment shop - had a white Christmas area.  
I just loved it and had to snap a few photos...

We also visited a pottery shop.  This guy was good!  

Pots by de Perrot sells on Etsy.  His nature inspired cupboard pulls are a big hit.
(see some on the cupboard below and visit his shop here.)

Part of the tour included an alpaca farm.  
I enjoyed some bonding time with this cutey.  
And we were able to enter a drawing to win a live alpaca.  Really!
Can you imagine?  What fun that would be...

A flower shop was on the tour.  Loved their displays - 
which included this vintage wringer washing machine...

 Our last stop was to an art studio and gallery inside a barn and back a long lane.   
They had a few pigs that they keep out in the woods where you 
might typically expect to see a horse or some goats...

 I thought they were fun...

Entering the barn studio...

and a piece of art in progress...

What a fun day to spend with my sister (my birthday gift to her).
  Thanks for going along...

I still have more of my Christmas decor to share with you.  
Perhaps tomorrow...  ~Joyce

Dec 9, 2015

Recycled Vintage Ephemera in an Etsy Treasury...

It's always fun to be included in an Etsy treasury.  
Today I was honored to be in this 'Old is New Again' treasury.

It's all about vintage ephemera that has been reborn into current desirables.  
Take a peek at some of these awesome ideas from my fellow Etsy sellers...

Pretty Byrd Designs makes awesome greeting cards using recycled ephemera.  
I'm especially loving this sleigh card...

Shoe Flower has crocheted edge ornaments from old greeting cards
 down to an art.  Remember Holly Hobbie?

  Simply Green Designs makes these wonderful folded flowers. They consist of 55 folds!!!

The Rehatchery makes some amazing upcycled paper ornaments.
  This hanging 3D diamond is way cool... (do people say that anymore?)

Indigo Wings also makes greeting cards.  Hers are more 
collage-like with assorted applied elements.  I love 'em!

Cards In Stock is another maker of greeting cards - but doesn't stop there.
  Check out this flower! What a pretty package adornment this would make...

And while there were other great sellers with awesome 
handmade goods in the Treasury - I'll feature one more yet... 
Aren't these envelopes from Vintage Coffee Stains the sweetest?
Thanks Ephemera Ever After for bringing these great sellers
to our attention.
Go give them some love and see if you can find my Christmas
 treasure in the grouping.   ~Joyce

Dec 5, 2015

Christmas Porch 2015...

  Today was the day for gathering greens and 'doing' the front porch. 
 It was also the year to finally rewrap my outdoor packages. 

When you have just a snippet of ribbon - a 3 loop bow works well.
 (Make 3 loops - pinch and tie together at the base .)

But let me backtrack... 
To start my day - I drove to a local wooded community and searched 
for fallen branches.  It was slim pickins' this year;  
perhaps because we've had no snow.  
But after a few embarrassing roadside stops - I did gather a nice supply...

The greens got 'plopped' all over the place - including this basket and milk can...

On the other side of my front door - my begonia is still blooming.
  So I kept it and added some greens to it for when it whithers completely.  
The skates make an appearance every year...

The lantern was a craft find several years ago...

Both sides...

The driveway lights were given a wreath and bow.  I made about 7 bows today.  
They didn't need to be perfect.  They're outside and will get abused anyway. 
  Yay... I'm feeling 'done' with decorating! 
(I still have some more inside decor to show you in another post.)
  Now I can enjoy attending events,  making food and gathering gifts.  
Are you making a dent in your Christmas to-do list?  ~Joyce


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