Fat Tuesday

Assorted Donuts

Fat Tuesday is just one of many names for the day before Ash Wednesday, which includes Mardi Gras, Fastnacht Day, and Shrove Tuesday. Today, we are going to talk about donuts. There are so many choices: holes versus no holes, fillings, varying shapes, flavored doughs, and icings, etc. Everyone has their favorites. If you cut them into halves or quarters, you can try a little of each. Let’s get started…

Fastnachts

Fastnacht Donuts

These powdered sugar coated German donuts are an integral part of any pre-Lenten celebration.

Plain Donuts

Plain Donuts

Whether they are dunked in hot chocolate or toasted with butter and jelly, plain donuts offer a blank canvas for your creative culinary skills.

Cinnamon & Sugar Donuts

Cinnamon & Sugar Donuts

Butter, cinnamon & sugar are a heavenly flavor combination.

Glazed Donuts

Glazed Sugar Coated Donuts

Simply sweet, these popular donuts have extra sparkle thanks to a dusting of sugar prior to glazing.

Vanilla-Glazed Chocolate Donuts

Vanilla Glazed Chocolate Donuts

This vanilla glaze is the perfect complement to a rich moist chocolate donut.

Crumb Topped Donut

Crumb Topped Donut

The secret to this coffeecake flavor comes from cake crumbs and a sugar glaze.

Frosted & Chocolate Dipped Donuts

Frosted & Chocolate Dipped Donuts

Many donuts have frosting on top, while others a dipped in chocolate or other sweet candy coatings.

Double Chocolate Coffee Donut

Chocolate Coffee Donut

Coffee & Chocolate are two very popular flavor combos.

Frosted Donuts Topped with Sprinkles or Nuts

Frosted & Sprinkled Donuts

Sprinkles and nuts easily adhere to the frosting layer beneath.

Frosted Donut Topped with Coconut

Coconut Donut

Cookie Monster may have to change his name before biting into this coconut cutie.

Donut Holes Rolled in Powdered Sugar

Donut Holes

If you make donuts, you’re going to have lots of leftover holes. Thanks to companies, like Dunkin Donuts, donut holes are the perfect bite-size treat. You can’t eat just one.

French Cruller

French Cruller

These delicious treats are light and fluffy on the inside and coated with a honey glaze. They get their unique shape by being piped from a pastry bag.

Jelly Filled Donut

Jelly Filled Donut

Jelly donuts come in a variety of flavors, including strawberry, apricot, and raspberry.

Custard or Creme Filled Donut Topped with Powdered Sugar

Custard Cream Filled Donuts

Angel cream and Bavarian crème are just a few of the tempting filling options.

Boston Crème Donut

Boston Creme Donut

Boston Crème is a classic favorite with luscious chocolate and sweet creamy custard.

Chocolate Crème Filled Donut Topped with Powdered Sugar

Chocolate Filled Donut

Chocolate makes everything better. Just looking at this photo makes my mouth water.

Frosted & Filled Heart-Shaped Donut

Heart Shaped Donut

Donuts don’t have to be round. They can be heart-shaped, square, or triangular. The dough can be hand-twisted to create textured, fluted and even pretzel shaped donuts. Interesting shapes and colors appeal to the eyes as well as the tastebuds.

Decorated Donuts

Decorated Donuts

Decorations include icing, chocolate chips, shavings, & powder, candy, marshmallows, cake crumbs, pretzels, sprinkles, and nuts.

Strawberry Shortcake Donut

Strawberry Shortcake Donut

Not usually found in donuts, Strawberries and Cream is another classic flavor combo. Hidden inside is a rich whipped cream filling waiting to blend with the sweet juicy strawberry. It’s love at first bite!

Specialty Donuts

Specialty Donuts

Maple Bacon and Samoa Donuts are exotic flavor combos. Smokey maple syrup and salty bacon will satisfy sweet and salty cravings. The Samoa donut tastes like the popular Girl Scout Cookie, with chocolate and caramel drizzle over coconut.

Eating is the Best Part

Raccoon Holding a Donut

And now, I’m hungry. How about you? I hope there’s something in the kitchen to satisfy my sweet tooth. If not … Dunkin Donuts, here I come! Lol  What kinds of donuts do you like? Please let me know in the comments section.

Thanks for Reading & Happy Crafting!

Valentine’s Day Crafts of Love

Love Birds
Valentine’s Day is a great time to let those special people in your life know how much you care – spouse, partner, girlfriend, boyfriend, mother, father, kids, grandparents, friends, and the list goes on… Flowers are nice, but a show of affection doesn’t have to be expensive. In fact, some of the simplest ways cost very little, but mean so much.

Drawing, Coloring & Painting
No Words Necessary
Sometimes no words are necessary. Create a simple drawing or a fine arts painting.

Papercrafting & Creative Writing
Papercraft
Instead of buying expensive greeting cards, buy fancy paper or card stock and write your own message. A few well-chosen words or a favorite quote will do nicely, or you might want to challenge yourself by writing a poem.

Candle Light For A Romantic Evening
Candle Light For A Romantic Evening
Candles provide light, scent and ambiance. The incredible selections include beeswax, fragrances, multicolor, tea lights, pillars, tapers, battery operated LEDs, and electric. If you can’t find exactly what you want, get a candle making kit.

Baking Sweets For Your Sweet Heart
Baking Sweets For Your Sweet Heart
With the infinite number of recipes on the Internet, and the availability of boxed baked goods, anyone can bake delicious cookies, cakes, and breads.

Who Doesn’t Love Candy?
Candy & Flowers
Store-bought candy comes in mouth-watering flavors. If you prefer a more hands-on approach, buy candy melts and a mold to surprise the chocolate lover in your life with a few homemade confections. A heart shaped box can be purchased to complete this romantic theme.

Jewelry Making
Jewelry Making
Jewelry is a versatile gift for women, men and kids. Obviously there are many readymade items on the market, but if you make your own, it’s sure to be one of a kind.

Valentine’s Figurines
Valentine’s Frog Figurines
If you can’t find the right words, and the thought of making something gives you chills, there are plenty of inexpensive Valentine’s figurines sure to charm your loved one.

Stuffed Animals
Teddy Bear
A big cuddly bear could be just the ticket to getting a big “bear” hug.

Charms & Trinkets
Charms
Located in the jewelry aisle of the craft store, charms and pendants can be added to an existing bracelet or necklace, and can also be used on key chains and purses.

Flower Arranging
Silk Flowers
While fresh cut flowers can be outrageously expensive for Valentine’s Day, silk flower can be arranged in a pretty vase or container at a much more affordable price.

Photography & Framing
Decorative Silver & Blue Picture Frame
We all have special moments in our lives. Times we want to remember for a lifetime. Take a photo of that special person, event or location and place in an attractive frame.

Knitting & Crocheting
Knitted Gloves
Crocheted or knitted hats, scarves and gloves are always appreciated. The addition of faux fur trim is a hot trend in fashion today.

Don’t Forget Your Furry Friends
Dog in a Blanket
A blanket is the perfect accessory for a warm and cozy nap on a cold winter day.  If needlework is not in your skill set, a new toy or a playdate will thrill your pet.

It doesn’t matter how you choose to say it. Just let your loved ones know how you feel.

Thanks for Reading & Happy Crafting!

Pick Your Poison

Cocktails on a Bar

Regardless of whether you call it a bar, pub or saloon, bartenders frequently say to customers, “Pick Your Poison.”  If you are unfamiliar with this expression, it means what kind of alcohol do you want.  I found a “Pick Your Poison” sign, which will make a great addition to my brother’s bar. Let’s get started.

Unfinished Sign

Unfinished Sign

I purchased this sign at Michaels Arts & Crafts from their Halloween collection. Experiment with color schemes on scrap paper and then choose your supplies. Later in this post, you will see further experimentation using photo editing software.

Supplies

Markers & Paint

Supplies:
“Pick Your Poison” Sign (14” wide x 1” deep x 8” high)
Acrylic Paints – black
Magic Markers – green, black
Paintbrushes

First Line Colored Black

Letters Colored Black

Using a black marker, color the top line of text. It may require a few coats.

Second Line Colored Green

Letters Colored Green

Color the next line of text green. It may require a few coats.

Top & Bottom Trim Painted Black

Top & Bottom Painted Black

Paint the trim black. I wanted the word poison to really stand out but the marker just wasn’t enough. I switched to paints as you will see below.

Revised Supplies

Paints

Revised Supplies:
Acrylic Paints – black, metallic green
Paintbrushes

Painted Letters

Painted Letters

Paint the word Poison with several coats of metallic green. I considered adding drips of 3D paint to make the green letters appear to be bubbling or oozing but decided against it. You could stop at this point if you like the wood grain background.

Photo Editing – Experiment 1

Photo Editing Test 1

Using photo editing software, I experimented with different background colors. I was just dabbling so I apologize for the sloppy lettering. It was just what I needed to decide how to proceed.

Photo Editing – Experiment 2

Photo Editing Test 2

I also tested different color combos for the text against the new backgrounds.

Photo Editing – Experiment 3

Photo Editing Test 3

Because I liked the high contrast and implied sense of danger, I chose red as the background color.

Finalized Supplies

Paints

Finalized Supplies:
Acrylic Paints – black, metallic green, red
Paintbrushes

Painted Background Red

Background Painted Red

Paint the background red. Due to streaking, which did not appear until after the paint had dried, it took several coats of paint.

Finished Sign

Finished Sign

Here is the finished sign, ready to be hung above the bar.

I hope you enjoyed this quick & easy project as much as I did. Sitting here at the bar, I drink a toast to my readers. I’ll save the seat next to me in case you decide to join me.

Thanks for Reading & Happy Crafting!

Year of the Rabbit 2023

Floppy Ear Rabbit

January 22nd marks the beginning of the Chinese New Year.  This is the Year of the Rabbit. These gentle creatures have a lot to teach us and we can all use a little motivation and inspiration. 

Get Plenty of Sunshine & Exercise

New Year’s resolutions are difficult to keep, but even a short daily walk outdoors will do wonders for the mind and body.

Remember to Rest

Rabbit Resting

Sleep recharges our batteries, giving us renewed energy for whatever the day may bring. What could be better than an afternoon nap?

Appreciate your Family

Mommy & Baby Rabbits

Take care of each other. Sometimes all it takes is a kind word or a smile to let someone know you care.

Learn to Share

Rabbits Sharing a Carrot

Everything is better when shared with a friend.

Stop & Smell the Roses

Rabbit Eating Clover Flower

Appreciate the beauty of nature. When you do, life’s magic will astound you.

Let Someone Else do the Driving

Baby Bunny in a Shirt Pocket

Everyone wants to be in the driver’s seat, but as a passenger you can admire the view.

May the Year of the Rabbit be your best one yet! 

Happy New Year & Happy Crafting!

Countdown – Top Six Posts 2022

It seems we are always keeping an eye on the time.  Busy schedules and ever-growing “To-Do” lists often prevent us from stopping to review our accomplishments.  Let us take a few minutes to look back at the highest ranked posts, as voted by you, the readers. Below is a list of the Top Six posts of 2022, in ascending order:

Number 6: Pumpkin Spice & Everything Nice

In Autumn, as the leaves begin to turn, pumpkin flavored items begin popping up everywhere, from coffee shops to fast food restaurants and even the local pub.  To read more, please click here. 

Number 5: Decorating Easter Eggs

Dyed eggs are a staple of any Easter celebration.  To read more, please click here.

Number 4: Collages: Old School vs. High Tech

Collages can be created by two different methods: 1) “Old School” Traditional, or 2) High Tech.  To read more, please click here.

Number 3: Inspiration: Lost & Found – Part 1

Sometimes it feels like inspiration is impossible to find. It hides in plain sight, masquerading as mundane items in our daily lives. To read more, please click here.

Number 2: Halloween: Naughty or Nice?

There are all sorts of Halloween themes and characters to help us celebrate this imaginative holiday.  To read more, please click here.

Number 1: Blogging Vacation

Throughout the summer, I usually take a break, by posting every other week.  This year there were so many inspirations to share I simply kept going. To read more, please click here.

And there we have it – the top 6 posts of 2022.  We have a new year to explore the world of creativity.  There are always new ideas and I’ll be sure to include more of your favorites.  Your opinions are greatly appreciated, and I look forward to so much more this year.  If you have any suggestions for future posts, please let me know. 

Thanks for Reading! 

All the best in 2023 and Happy Crafting! 

Happy New Year 2023!

Is it my imagination or do the months go by faster and faster every year?  How could the holidays be over already?  I suppose it is an exciting time as we are presented with a clean slate in a year filled with new opportunities and interesting experiences.

I just wanted to take a moment to thank all my wonderful visitors for reading, following, liking, and commenting!  You inspire me every day to create new works of art and to share ideas with so many of you with a passion for creativity and admiration for the beautiful world in which we live. 

May all your dreams come true in 2023!

Happy New Year & Happy Crafting!

Holiday Table & Decor

Indoor Decorating
Decorating the interior of your home for the holidays can be an overwhelming task. With entertaining, overnight guests, and gift buying, it’s a very hectic time of year. If you do a little at a time, and enlist the help of your family, you can create the festive atmosphere you’ve always wanted. Let’s get started with a few decorating ideas.

Christmas Poinsettia Wreath
Poinsettia Wreath & Garland
The first thing your guests will notice starts with the front door. A simple evergreen wreath comes to life with the addition of a few silk poinsettias. Real or artificial evergreen sprays can be hung on either side with coordinating red ribbon.

Fruit & Pinecone Wreath
Fruit Wreath
This unusual wreath consists of pomegranates, oranges, pinecones and flowers layered over an evergreen wreath base.

Jingles Bells Wreath
Wreath Jingle Bells
Bring the festive sounds of jingle bells into your home with this unique wreath. Every time someone opens the door it will sound like Santa has arrived.

Wine Connoisseur’s Wreath
Wreath Wine Corks
If you collect wine corks, this is the wreath for you. The layered pattern forms a beautifully textured wreath, but remains lightweight. The liquor bottle in the center is optional.

Hanging Evergreen Wreath
Hanging Wreath
A hanging arrangement is a beautiful and unexpected pleasure. If you are lucky enough to have evergreens and pine trees on your property, you’ll have most of the supplies you’ll need. Simply layer the greens on a wire wreath frame, insert battery-operated candles, and scatter about several apples and berries. A few cinnamon sticks will provide a sweet & spicy scent. Ornate ribbon will conceal metal hanging rods, or you can purchase decorative chains at home improvement stores.

Candle & Holly Centerpiece
Candles Centerpiece
Holly naturally brings in the festive colors of Christmas. A few candles and some pinecones complete this lovely centerpiece.

Glass Ball Candle Wreath
Glass Ornament Wreath
To make this colorful display, you could purchase a ready-made glass ball wreath, or buy a bunch of ornaments and use hot glue to assemble it.

A Study in Red & Green
Red Candle
Red is such an attention getting color. Red berries, green leaves and evergreen surround a bold pillar candle. The candlelight and white string lights lend a romantic atmosphere.

Fancy Metal Tray Centerpiece
Candle Tray
Using something you already own, such as a tray, is an inexpensive way to create something new. To complete the project, simply add colorful ornaments and a candle. You can easily use this centerpiece all year long by changing the contents to suit the season or whatever makes you happy.

Festive Table Settings
Christmas Table
Creating an attractive Christmas table doesn’t have to cost a lot. Alternating layers of green and red is the key to this festive setting. Fabric squares and colorful paper napkins provide contrast and texture. A red Christmas ball on top becomes a keepsake for each guest in remembrance of the occasion. In fact, you could write each person’s name with a metallic Sharpie marker and use the ornaments as place cards.

Neutral Palette
Neutral Palette Table
Textured white dishes are offset by gold flatware, gold chargers, and gold bell ornaments. Elegant white roses are an element of softness, while the crystal goblets provide the sparkle.

Sophisticated Contemporary
Contemporary Centerpiece
Sleek lines, reflective metallic ornaments, and indirect lighting are keys to creating this ultra contemporary holiday setting. The red pops of color draw the eye and the reindeer figurine adds a bit of whimsy.

Christmas Crackers
Christmas Crackers
Crackers are part of Christmas celebrations in several countries around the world. The red and white theme of this table setting is created with the tissue paper fans, white tablecloth and plates, and the metallic red foil crackers.

Ornamental Table Runner
Garland Table Runner
Table runners can be quite expensive, and may be difficult to find for longer table lengths. Make you own by using a real or artificial evergreen garland and some brightly colored ornaments,

Gift Box Centerpiece
Gift Box Centerpiece
Craft stores often sell sets of decorative gift boxes such as the ones shown above. Some include light woven inside for extra sparkle. After the holidays, the boxes nest within each other for easy storage.

Gift Tags as Place Cards
Gift Tag Place Cards
Place cards don’t have to be drab white. Purchase gift tags or make your own. The ribbon bow is a nice finishing touch.

Flower Power – Poinsettias
Poinsettias
Red, white or pink poinsettias are multi-purpose decorations. Whether you choose live or artificial plants, poinsettias make colorful additions to any room. To create a back to nature themed Christmas tree, silk blooms, pinecones and red berries can be used as ornaments.

Festive Red & Gold Fireplace
Fireplace
The fireplace is the perfect spot for relaxing by a cozy fire, and reminiscing about holidays past. Floral garland, red and gold candles, a Santa Claus statue and a pretty poinsettia provide a welcoming atmosphere, accented by stockings hung by the fire with care.

Display Collectibles
Nutcracker
At some point, most people acquire collections that never see the light of day. Collectibles, such as nutcrackers, snow globes, and carousel horses, can be artfully arranged on mantels or shelves to create unique holiday displays you’re sure to love.

Decorating for the holidays can be fun as well as entertaining. Each new item you create will become a treasured keepsake next year. Over time you will have an eclectic collection to be enjoyed for years to come. Let your holiday spirit guide your creativity.

Happy Holidays & Happy Crafting!

Baking with Love for the Holidays

Hot Chocolate & Cookies for Santa
Santa Claus isn’t the only one hoping for some holiday goodies. We all love dessert. If you get a head start on your baking, you’ll have plenty to share with your family and friends throughout the long holiday season. Baked goods make great gifts too.

Assorted Butter Cookies
Butter Cookies
Butter cookies are finger licking good. For variety, dip some in chocolate, fill with fruit, or place a colorful layer of fondant on top and pipe on a few decorative flourishes. If you are pressed for time, many bakeries offer ready-made cookie platters.

Fruit Filled Cookies
Fruit Filled Cookies
All you need to make these festive red and white cookies is two round cookie cutters – one small and one large. Layer two cookies on top of each other, with strawberry, cherry or raspberry filling, to make this sandwich cookie. The bottom cookie is solid, while the top cookie has a small cut out in the center. Shake powdered sugar on top for a beautiful bakery finish.

Fudge Brownies & Cinnamon Chip Cookies
Brownies & Cinnamon Chip Cookies
Brownies are a favorite any time of year, and instead making chocolate chip cookies, try using cinnamon chips and cut the cookies into heart shapes.

Almond Crescent Cookies
Almond Crescent Cookies
This classic butter cookie will surprise you with its unexpected almond flavor and they’re great for dipping in your coffee or tea.

Vanilla Cupcake with Cream Cheese Icing
Christmas Cupcake
The simplicity of a vanilla cupcake contrasts nicely with the rich, sweet taste of cream cheese icing. Safety Tip: Holly and its berries are poisonous. Use an artificial holly garnish.

Coconut Rum Balls
Coconut Rum Balls
These sweet, crunchy delights should be refrigerated overnight for maximum flavor.

Petits Fours & Eggnog
Eggnog & Petits Fours
Petits Fours are the perfect marriage of cake and candy. Fondant icing is actually candy used to cover bite size cubes of yellow, sponge or pound cake. While the fondant is still wet, decorations can be applied using piped icing, or a sprinkling of either candy or nuts. As an added burst of flavor, jelly or butter cream can be spread over the cake prior to applying the fondant.

Gingerbread Stars & Hearts Cookies
Frosted Gingerbread Cookies
These gingerbread cookies are decorated with a thin coat of light green frosting, patterned with white icing and sprinkled with sugar for a frosty appeal.

Traditional Gingerbread Cookies
Traditional Gingerbread Cookies
Gingerbread cookies are very popular treats this time of year. Decorating is easy with the icing tubes, sprinkles and candy pieces available at most grocery store.

Gingerbread House
Gingerbread House
For a more challenging project, gingerbread kits come in a number of varieties, such as cookies, houses, and villages, and include all the necessary candies, icing, and yes the baked gingerbread too. The whole family will enjoy building and eating their creations.

Hanukkah Donuts
Jelly Donuts
Deep-fried jelly donuts sprinkled with granulated sugar are a delicious part of every Hanukkah celebration.

Cherry Cheese Tarts
Cherry Cheese Tarts
Most people love cheesecake. These tarts have the delicious flavor and they’re finger foods as well. You could purchase ready-made mini piecrusts and make your own filling. They can also be made in a cupcake pan. Line the pan with paper cupcake wrappers. Drop a vanilla wafer in the bottom of each cupcake. Pour in your filling and bake. After they cool, top with cherries or strawberries and enjoy!

Christmas Pudding
Christmas Pudding
Also known as Plum Pudding, this traditional Christmas dessert takes 5 to 10 hours to steam. The aromas of the fruits and spices wafts through your home while it cooks.

Pecan Pie
Pecan Pie
With a filling made from eggs, butter and brown sugar, pecan pie is an addictively sweet dessert, which will leave you begging for more. For a rich caramel flavor, use dark brown sugar.

Red Velvet Cake
Red Velvet Cake
In case you didn’t know, red velvet cake is actually a moist rich chocolate cake with lots of food coloring to create that ultra rich shade of red. For those of you who avoid artificial coloring, there is a cocoa available with a natural reddish brown color. The icing and filling is cream cheese.

Yule Log
Yule Log
A spiral design is the hallmark of this impressive dessert, but it’s easy to make, and will melt in your mouth. Bake the cake in a jellyroll pan lined with parchment paper. After baking, lay the cake face down on a towel. If necessary, trim any ragged edges. Starting with a long side, roll the cake in the towel and cool completely on a wire rack. Unroll and remove the towel, and lay cake flat. Spread the filling over the top within 1/2” of the edges. Suggested fillings include whipped cream, pie filling, and pudding. Carefully roll the cake and place it with the seam side down on a platter. Coat the exterior with chocolate frosting and use a fork to create the bark patterns along the length of the log.

There are so many recipes to sample. Don’t worry about gaining that holiday five pounds. There will be plenty of time to work that off shivering and shoveling snow during the cold winter months to come.

Happy Holidays & Happy Crafting!

Outdoor Holiday Lighting

Lights & Fireworks
The holidays are certainly a festival of lights. It’s fun to gather the family together for a drive around the neighborhood or visit a nearby town to simply enjoy the show. It’s a feast for the eyes and might cause a few chuckles as well. Before you venture out, here are a few ideas for outdoor lighting at your home.

Textured Oversized LED String Lights
Lights Faceted Blue
These large bulbs are reminiscent of old-fashioned lights but have the advantages of being LEDs and the textured surfaces create a sparkling effect.

Multi-Color Round LED String Lights
Lights Multi Color
LED string lights offer brilliant colors and unusually long life. The strand shown has a sleek, contemporary appeal.

Old Fashioned Christmas Lights
Old Fashioned Lights
These string lights have an old fashioned, rustic charm, and the long life of today’s best technology in LED lighting.

Icicle Lights
Icicle Lights
When they first were developed, icicle lights only came in short white strands. Today there are many colors and lengths available like the brilliant blue icicles shown above.

Oversized Lighted Orbs
Lighted Orbs
These oversized lighted orbs were made for display in large trees. You’ll probably need an extension pole or tall ladder to place them, but the starlight effect is well worth the extra effort.

Lightshow Projection Spinners
Decorative Spotlights
By now you have probably seen these special light effects on neighbors’ houses. Essentially, they are created by a special spotlight projector, which changes colors and images as it slowly spins.

String Lights & Mini Trees
Decorated Flower Boxes
In the cold weather, flower boxes usually sit empty and forlorn. Why not bring them to life again with artificial evergreens and white lights?

Old Fashioned Metal Lantern Lights
Festive Lantern
This old-style lantern and wreath bring pops of color to an otherwise snow-covered landscape. Candlelight is always warm and welcoming.

Landscape Lighting with Garlands & Bows
Lighted Gazebo
Christmas in the country is celebrated with evergreen garlands, red ribbons and hundreds and hundreds of multi-color lights. For bushes and fences, net lights can be tossed over the top and will look like you spent hours stringing lights, but all it really took was a few flicks of the wrist.  How easy is that?

Lighted Lawn Figures
Lawn Figures
Lighted lawn decorations come in an endless variety, including Santa and his reindeer, as well as more unusual characters, such as Jack Skellington, ice castles, and unicorns.

Lighted Christmas Gift Boxes
Lights Gifts
Lighted gift boxes are cute on a lawn grouped under a tree or with a reindeer pulling a sleigh.

Lighted Inflatable Figures
Inflatable Penguins
There are a multitude of choices when it comes to inflatables. People seem to have a love-hate relationship with these lawn decorations. At night they cheerfully grin at passersby, but during the day lying flat upon the ground, they tend to resemble laundry scattered across your lawn.

Tropical Tree Lighting & Lighted Lawn Figures
Lights Tropical
There may not be any snow in the tropics, but that doesn’t stop Christmas from coming. The lawn figures tend to be warm weather themed, and lighted palm trees are often lit all year long.

Chinese Star-Shaped Lanterns
Chinese Lanterns
If you happen to live in a warm climate, Chinese lanterns can be hung outdoors around a pool, deck or patio. Their soft light and perforated patterns really do call to mind starlight.

Unexpected Lighted Lawn Figure
Backyard Snowman
This time of year, we tend to do so much for everyone else. It’s easy to forget about yourself. Why not treat yourself by doing the unexpected? One year we put a lighted snowman against a tree in the back yard. No one else could see it, but every time we walked through the dining room that smiling face brought joy to us all.

Elf Witch Project
Lighted Witch
Okay, so you’re probably wondering why the photo of a witch has been included in this post. Well, there is a very good reason. We all have decorations for different holidays throughout the year. This requires a lot of storage space, and that can often be a problem. Making a decoration multi-purpose is an easy solution. We’re going to turn this Halloween Witch into one of Santa’s Elves.

Red Fabric Hat
Step 1 – Wrap red, water-repellent fabric over the witch’s hat, and be sure to tuck the orange hair underneath. Secure it in place by tying it to one side with a piece of twine or red ribbon. Now you’re probably thinking it looks like a pirate! Stay with me for a few more steps.

White Trim
Step 2 – Tie white garland trim around edge of hat. Create a pompom by wrapping the same garland around the bottom point of the hat and secure with white ribbon or string.

Red & White Scarf
Step 3 – Wrap an outdoor scarf around the neck.

Candy Cane
Step 4 – Tie a plastic candy cane to one arm using a piece of string or ribbon.

Lighted Elf Witch
And voila! You now have an adorable lighted Christmas Elf!

Witch Elf Before & After
When Halloween rolls around again, simply remove the accessories and the witch will be ready to haunt your yard once again.

Lighting is the key element in any holiday décor. Choosing what to do is part of the fun. Get the whole family involved to make quick work of the decorating process. Some towns offer awards for the best holiday displays. Let the competition begin! Good luck!

Happy Holidays & Happy Crafting!

Blogger Thanksgiving

Cornucopia

At this time of year, I usually post an article about being thankful for the many blessings in my life.  I would like to send a big thank you to the bloggers who inspire me.  I apologize if I miss a name or two and will update this post as needed. 

Wordpress New Blog Post

In the blogroll below, you will see the blog title and a few descriptive words for each.  I hope you find something that piques your interest. 

Hassentidoque – fictional stories with illustrative photos
Chambers on the Road – RV travel & retirement
Surf Kawela Hawaii – Hawaii photography & adorable animals
Jeweled Again by Jessica – jewelry art
One for the Money Two for the Road – travel info & photography
Npchumordotcom – comics
FunWritings – protecting the oceans & environment
Senioren um die Welt – world travel info and photography
Tiffany Arp-Daleo Art – abstract art & photography
Beauty and More – beauty & lifestyle
Scuba Hank NYC – sea life photography and videos
Wildonline – British wildlife photography
Our Right to Write – photos and quotes
5thGeneration Girl – family and second chances
El Espacio de Chus – photography
Fun with Philosophy – self-discovery
My Book Eyes – children’s book reviews
Cheryl’s Blog – travel & lifestyle
Miss Val’s Findings – jewelry components
Helene Brennan – Ireland photography & paintings

Blogging Community

Thank you for sharing your extraordinary talents.  I also want to thank my readers, followers, and those taking the time to comment.  I appreciate every one of you.  Together, we form an online community for sharing, inspiring, supporting, and encouraging each other. 

Happy Thanksgiving and Best Wishes to Everyone!