Vintage Butcher Block Table

Yet another DIY project to share. This butcher block table was actually in two pieces-the bottom had been kicking around the barn loft for the past 15-20 years, and the top was a throw-away Coach picked up over the summer at a yard sale.

The bottom looked like this:

Butcher Block Base Before

The top looked like this:

Butcher Block Top Before

And now the whole piece looks like this!

Finished Butcher Block Table CDH LOGO

I started with the base, painting it in my favorite dark charcoal gray home-made chalk-like paint.

CDH Parisiian Gray Paint

You can find that recipe here. Then I sanded down the edges, added a glaze finish with Martha Stewart Antique Glaze  mixed with Madagascar Mocha Couture Paint.

Paint Couture Madagascar Mocha

The glazing technique is so simple: Mix the glaze and paint together, paint it on your piece,

Martha Stewart Glaze painting on

then wipe it off where you don’t want it.

Martha Stewart Glaze wiping off

Allowed the entire base to dry. Finished with a coat of Fidde’s Soft Wax, which gives it a nice glowing finish.

Sanded and Glazed Leg

The top required a bit more elbow grease and some heavy implements.

Butcher Block Top Distressed

I wanted to rough it up just a bit to give it a more “antiqued” appearance, but since there will be food prep on it, I didn’t want it to be so rustic as to have holes in it where food could get caught!

Butcher Block Distressing ToolsUsed a chain, a hammer and a screwdriver and just banged it around a bit. (I wonder why my hands are so cracked and bleeding…) Since I wanted this to be a food safe butcher block top, but also wanted a shade or two darker, I attempted a technique I had found online: staining with brewed coffee grounds.

Staining with Coffee Grounds

Really didn’t work out too well, but it smelled great! The butcher block top is finished with Howard Butcher Block Conditioner. This is a product that I picked up at Home Depot -its FDA food safe-perfect!

Howard Butcher Block Conditioner

To secure the top to the base, I used some old black iron decorative brackets Coach got from somewhere…(seems to be a recurrent theme, right? I tell him what I need, he finds it.)

Ornamental Brackets

The brackets were a little too black and “new-looking”, even though they are pretty old, so I sprayed them with Rustoleum Gray gloss paint,

Rustoleum Gray Painters Touch

but that was a bit too shiny, so I resprayed them with Rustoelum soft flat iron black spray paint.

Rustoleum Metallic Paint for Brackets

to complement the antiqued gray base color. I found that the simplest way to attach the top to the base was to place it on top, measured the four corners to ensure they were evenly spaced,

Measuring corners

marked the holes with a sharpie, (apologies for the blurry pic-too much leftover coffee, perhaps?)

Marking holes for drillingthen drilled starter holes for the screws,

Predrilling holes for bracketsflipped the top upside down and secured the brackets to the underside of the top.

Brackets affixed to bottom of butcher block top

Slipped the top back onto the base and secured it with screws. For the embellishments, I added this cool, rustic, vintage, winged front piece to be used as a towel or utensil hanger.

Bracket on front of Butcher Block

I am told it was the handle to an old wood planer. These side pieces

Butcher Block Hooks

are old window lock parts.

Butcher Block Side Ring Hangers

Perfect for hanging a pot or pan with an “s” hook. Old wooden rulers are kind of a thing right now, so I added one from “A.J. Wilkinson, The Oldest Hardware Company in Boston” across the front (perfect for measuring out dough!) and secured it with some rustic corner brackets to give it industrial “old general store” kind of vibe. Then I rubbed that with the Howard Butcher Block Conditioning to finish it.

Butcher Block Ruler and Corner BracketsDone and ready for some butchering, or pie-making, or whatever. But it won’t be in my kitchen, or my daughter’s (sorry, Kate-I promise I will make you another one), because it was sold this past weekend at the Vintage Thymes Monthly Market-yay! And, if you are in the market for an old wooden ruler, drop me a line. Since I mentioned to Coach that I needed a few, he’s been on the lookout, and now I have an immeasurable amount to choose from!

Rulers

Have a “block-buster” Tuesday everyone! Susan

Wax On, Wax Off

Winter. Cold outside. Cold inside. (with oil at $3.99 per gallon, our home doesn’t reach much higher than 62 degrees-EVER). Forced hot air furnace. Dry. Dusty. Dry. I am continually washing my hands, both at work (in the medical field, sterile is key) and at home. All of the painting, sanding, cleaning and woodworking I am doing has left my hands incredibly cracked and painful and bloody.

Cracked, Dy and Bleeding HandThe other day I looked down and saw the hands of a longshoreman, not a creative DIY blogger! I have tried all kinds of creams and potions and lotions and goops, but nothing has any lasting effects that have soothed my aching and crackling digits. So, I went on Amazon.com and ordered a Dr. Scholl’s for Her (I am not sure why guys can’t use this…) Quick Heat Thermal Therapy Paraffin Bath.

Dr. Scholls Bath and Supplies

Only took a couple of days to get here, and I was anxious to give it a try. The kit, for $29.95 came complete with the unit that has adjustable heat settings, 3 pounds of scented paraffin wax, 2 thermal mitts & 30 plastic glove liners. Now, one word of caution: the included paraffin was very heavily scented. so if you have allergies, this may not be the one for you! Once it was plugged in and warming up, the entire upstairs of our home had the strong scent of orchids. Which kind of made me feel like I was in Hawaii…OK, well, maybe not. But be forewarned. Unpacked the unit, followed the basic instructions.

Dr. Scholls Instructions

Placed it on a flat surface. I would also say that you need to place it somewhere where a little splattering wax won’t harm the surface. The three pounds of wax were packaged in three separately sealed bags.

Dr. Scholls Paraffin in Bag

The instructions were to open each one, then break the wax brick into quarters. Really?! Unless you are the Incredible Hulk

The Incredible Hulk Mitts(and he wouldn’t be using this anyway because it’s for HER), I don’t see how this is possible without some sort of large, sharp implement. In this case, some old, heavy Fiskar shears did the trick-don’t use your good scissors unless you want them to be waxed and slippery!

Waxed ScissorsI used the stab and split method.

Paraffin Bath Wax CuttingPlaced the wax pieces into the unit and turned it to high. The red light indicates it is heating.

Dr. Scholls Paraffin Bath LightsThere is also a flat plastic plate with holes in it that is to rest inside on the bottom of the unit once the wax is melted. This is clearly to keep you from resting your hands on the hot elements. Smart move, Dr. Scholl.

Bottom Surface PlateNow, I realize that the name on the box says “Quick Heat Paraffin Bath“, but if you were in a hurry to smooth your rough edges before a night on the town, I’m afraid you would be sorely disappointed. The warming time is 2 hours! (the instructions say 120 minutes, I think to throw you off, but I can do the math…) So I plugged it in and went off to do more stuff in my workshop and get ready for the football game, which I determined would coincide with the precise melting point time. Fast forward…green light on…dipping time! You place your hand into the warm pretty hot wax, fingers slightly apart, dipping for just a couple of seconds, then pulling your hand out.

Dipping hand in wax bathWait a few seconds until the wax starts to harden, then dip again, each time adding another coat of wax to your hand. They recommended 5 coats, and that was just about right to create a waxy, sealed glove.

Re-dipping to for wax glove

Placed my hand in one of the baggies,

Plastic bag covering wax

then donned the terry mitt.

One Mitt OnClearly, at this point, I could not longer take pics, so I came downstairs at the start of the game and asked Coach to help me out. He had no clue why I was wearing pastel blue oven mitts, nor why I was asking him to take my photo-lol!

Mitts onDuring the first quarter, the wax slowly cooled off (as did the Colts), so after approx. 15 minutes I removed the mitts and the plastic baggies to uncover this-

Waxed hand afterthe wax had cooled but stayed somewhat soft, so I pulled that off too and I was left with a baggie full of cooled wax.

Remainder Wax After The instructions recommend discarding the wax, (you know, germs and all) but I figured, since I am the only one using it, why not recycle? What was left on my hands was a layer of lotion that I then massaged into my hands, per the instructions. Which felt great, but the scent was still quite heavy, so I ended up washing them a couple of times and then creaming them up.

Hand after wax bath

The verdict? Overall, I love this Dr. Scholl’s paraffin bath! My hands felt instantly smoother and less cracked and my knuckles were less achy too! For the time being, I am planning on making this a nightly ritual until my hands start looking less like a lumberjack’s, or until the warm weather arrives, whichever comes first. However, I am planning on purchasing some new, unscented wax to replace the orchids-if I can’t be in Hawaii, then I don’t want to be reminded of tropical breezes while the wind is howling outside here in New England.

Holiday Palm Trees

Hopefully it’s warm where you are, and just remember to do a bit of pampering for yourself today…Susan

Docksmith Is In The House

Well, the New Year’s Cash Giveaway is history! I am not sure who won yet, that will be posted shortly, but congrats!! Even though I wasn’t eligible to win the cash, since I was one of the sponsors, I feel like I did win, because I made a whole lot of new Facebook friends : ) I, myself, hardly ever enter any contests because, frankly, I never win anything. (Well, maybe because I never enter anything…) BUT, last week I happened to see a posting to win an iPhone docking station from Docksmith

Docksmith Logo

on Facebook,  and imagine that-I won!!! This company, based in Brunswick, Maine, takes all-natural pieces of driftwood and rootwood and transforms them into functional docking stations for your electronic devices-brilliant! (Ironically, I had actually blogged about this very company last year

Docksmith @ Fair

when I encountered their booth at the Castleberry Fair) Actually, these are pieces of organic art that you can display anywhere, but it just so happens that you can recharge your battery as well. If we are going to live with hard-edged technology all around us, we may as well make it softer and prettier, right? This is the one I received.

Docksmith iPhone 5 Docking Station

Brilliant packaging, BTW. I love it when companies actually say THANK YOU. (OK, I know, I didn’t actually purchase this, but it was nice anyway : )

Docksmith Packaging

This is a striking piece of soft gray driftwood that has been left in its natural state but with the middle drilled out and a docking station affixed inside. Now, instead of leaving my phone hanging around and searching for it whenever it rings, beeps or buzzes, it sits upright in its docking station in the kitchen, soaking up battery juice and in plain sight. They make endless combinations of pieces to fit your smartphones and smartpads. So, I got to thinking that I could actually design an entire room around this one accessory! With the style options, I could do a nautical theme-can you imagine this piece with room enough for two…

Docksmith Double Smartphones #170

perched on this desk?

Coastal Home via Zeroenergy

Zeroenergy Design via Houzz.com

Or a rustic but light log cabin with this one

Snap It Photography

Snap It Photography via Houzz.com

with this birch log beauty?

Docksmith iPhone Birch Log #162How about a warm, cozy fireside space

SFB Girl via Houzz.com

with a darker, more organic piece that would sit perched on the table or mantel?

Docksmith #123 iPad Mini or Galaxy Pad

Or a water-view retreat

DKOR Interiors Via Houzz.com

(where you can tweet) on this double-docking driftwood stationDocksmith Double Driftwood

The design is naturally flawless. The design possibilities are endless. Thanks to Docksmith for offering this giveaway! I guess the moral of this story is, if you don’t enter, you can’t win. Hope you all have a winning day today…Susan

Love you , mom.

This is a quick aside from my typical DIY blogging kind of posts. Today I receive a Facebook notification that my son had posted this video on my news feed along with the comment“oh, man this. I LOVE YOU MOM”  Just watch this Sochi 2014 video from Proctor & Gamble. If you have ever been a mom, or hope to be one, or had an awesome one who picked you up, wiped you off, cleaned you up, cheered you on, iced you down, hugged you in victory, held you & kissed your tears away in defeat, then this is meant for you.

Sochi 2014 Proctor & Gamble

http://mashable.com/2014/01/06/sochi-moms-ad/?utm_cid=mash-com-fb-main-link

PS: LOVE YOU TOO SON

143mom

Time Out!

Coach and I took time out of our busy holiday schedule to attend another Crown Auction on Sunday. After the auction, where we scored 3 awesome pieces of vintage furniture, including this little beauty,

French Provincial Side Table

I remarked to Coach how happy I am to see all of the old, worn, broken, dusty, tired items being purchased for re-use and re-purposing. Perhaps even 10 years ago, you would have seen many of the furniture items that were sold on Sunday in someone’s trash pile-unloved and unwanted. But, with the resurgence of DIY and so many new painting and finishing techniques on the blogs and Pinterest, everything old is new again! Case in point: Coach found this little child’s TIME OUT chair that was ready for the trash heap at a local yard sale.

Time Out Chair Before

It was weathered, gray and faded, and looked like it had been set outside in a time out corner years ago.But, with a thorough cleaning, some fresh paint, some crackle glaze and a pretty new cushion, this time out chair is now a comfortable fireside chair for reading or even playing some video games.

Time Out Chair with Bear PM

Here is the how-I-did-it:

1.Cleaned the chair and sanded lightly just to even the surface and get rid of the raised TIME OUT lettering.

2. Added a base coat of Glidden Gripper Glidden Gripperprimer to seal it.

3. Used Martha Stewart crackle medium all over the piece.

Martha Stewart Crackle Effect

Just brush over the base coat wherever you want the top coat to crackle to give an aged appearance and expose the base coat. The heavier coat of the glaze you paint on, the deeper and larger the cracks will appear. For the complete DIY info on that process, click here:

4. Added the top coat, in this case a Behr Paint pot in pale aqua blue I had picked up at Home Depot for a previous project. Those little pots of paint go a long way!

Time Out Chair Base CoatWhen you first brush it on over the base coat and glaze, it just looks like a painted piece. But slowly, the cracks begin to emerge.

Time Out Chair Crackle FinishYou can see that I left the seat unpainted, as I am adding a seat cushion to it. But notice the uneven paint, the cracks and crackles. This is the weathered effect I was going for.

Time Out Chair Crackled Finish

5. Instead of re-creating this as a TIME OUT chair, I wanted to create a welcoming spot for a small child. So I fashioned a little cushion using some foam core board that was cut to the size of the seat of the chair, some poly batting and a piece of black and white toile I had on hand.

Time Out Chair with cushion6. Since I wanted the toile to appear a faded blue, I decided to dye it with some diluted paint, the same color as the chair. (You know how you splatter latex paint on your nice new jeans and then you can’t get it off, ever? Same thing applies here.) I just added some paint to a bowl of warm water and stirred til mixed.

Time Out Chair paint and water mixture

7.Dropped in the fabric and allowed to soak for a couple of minutes to absorb the paint.

Time Out Chair fabric in paint bath

8. Rinsed it thoroughly until the water ran clear but there was just a hint of blue in the fabric. Wanted to make sure no-one ended up with a little blue butt! Then threw it in the dryer on high heat to set the color.

Time Out Chair rinsing fabric

9. I pressed it out and added some fusible interfacing just to stiffen it a bit to hold its shape.

Time Out Chair Fusible Interfacing

10. Attached the fabric to the foam core board and then attached that to the chair with some hot glue to keep it securely in place.

Time Out Chair Back

There you have it! A perfect little fireside seat for a special little someone. So, the next time you see an old piece of furniture that has seen better days, take a time out and think about the endless DIY possibilities!

Time Out Chair with Bear PM

And now it’s time to head out and hit the stores before we get buried in fresh snow! Hope you won’t have a lot of shoveling to do! Susan

 

A New Year’s Day Giveaway!!

New Year Sign

Happy New Year everyone! To kick off 2014, I have teamed up with so many amazing blogging, Facebook and Etsy friends to sponsor a cash giveaway by Toadstool Pond and Junky, Funky, Rusty & Re-purposed by Sue! This is the link (and you can also find it on my Facebook page as well if you would like to share it-and please do!)

https://www.facebook.com/SuesCountryCorner?sk=app_228910107186452

Just click on it, visit the sponsor pages and “like” them on Facebook, fill out your contact info, and done. That’s it! You won’t get any residual emails, we don’t use your info for any purpose other than to contact you if you win (Or should I say, WHEN you win : ) The contest runs from Jan 1, 2014 through Jan 7, 2014 . 4 prizes will be awarded including a $500 first place cash prize! Which means more $$$ to go buy new junky stuff to repurpose and re-love. So put on your lucky shoes, kick 2013 to the curb and start the new year off right! Good luck! Susan

Dropping The Ball

I could bore you all with my 2013 retrospective of my favorite or most popular blogs, but I will spare you the time on this New Year’s Eve, when I am certain you have better, more exciting things to do tonight. But, unlike some of you revelers, New Year’s celebrations have never been too successful in our lives, beginning with the very first one Coach and I celebrated together so many years ago. That Dec 31, way back before Dick Clark was the emcee to be in NYC,

Times Square New Year's Eve Flight Center

I attempted to make my very first pot roast (Coach’s favorite). It cooked for hours, and hours, and hours, until we finally decided to eat it before the ball dropped at midnight. That evening, we dined on what essentially was a browned rubber basketball.

Pot Roast Burned

But being young, and in love, Coach graciously choked it down and we popped the cork at midnight (a little champagne goes a long way…)

Champagne Popping

Over the years, we have attempted to celebrate in style, hosting dinner parties and game nights, even venturing into First Night in Boston. But almost always we ended up home before midnight, yawning and trying desperately to stay awake until Auld Langs Syne was played. So what’s cooking this year? Not much, I’m afraid. I am working until pretty late in the evening, meaning no prepping or party hosting for me. We will most likely grab a pizza or Chinese food when I get home and try to stay awake until midnight, quite happily saying goodbye to 2013 and welcoming in this brave new year with open arms. You see, 2013 has not been such a great year for our ourselves, our friends and our families. By my own declaration on last year’s blog post, 2013 was supposed to be The Year of Fun!

plane soaring

It read, and I quote:“If there is an opportunity to learn, create, travel, design, teach, cook, dine, soar, entertain or be entertained, count me in! Time for a fresh start and a new perspective, time for some fun!” We were going to laugh more, travel more, be a bit more daring, maybe even take the kayaks out for another spin.

Kayaking- The Launch

So, in reflection, on this last day of 2013, how did the year turn out in the end? Allow me to start by saying that there were some very bright moments in the past 365 days. Our family & friends have experienced so many high notes this year with new jobs, an eye-opening mission trip to a Dominican Republic orphanage through Mustard Seed Communities,

Mustard Seed Mission Trip Village

new business ventures (thank you Vintage Thymes Monthly Market),

Vintage Thymes Market Shop

new babies (sweet, adorable Elsie : )

Elsie

moves to the West Coast,

PG Photos

an improbable World Series victory,

Victorious Victorino

and running faster then ever before to qualify for The Boston Marathon (not me, definitely not me!).

Boston MarathonAnd even in the aftermath of this year’s marathon bombings we found hope, when Boston came together as one city to capture a fugitive

Boston Strong Logo

and celebrate who we are as a community.

The Next 26.

There were joyous celebrations of young new lives together

Bridal Party Dockside

and new babies on the way (making their debut in 2014), which all helped to brighten our days. But with that joy came much sorrow that cast a pall over our everyday lives, including job losses, saying farewell to our beloved old girl, Daisy

Daisy

and devastating illnesses in our inner circle of dear friends, who fight onward and bravely with amazing grace, demonstrating incredible strength of spirit every single day.

Bravelets

So, as the clock ticks on, I am most definitely not declaring another year of fun (certainly dropped the ball on that one). Instead, I am simply hoping that we are all blessed with a new beginning each day, and given an opportunity, we gladly extend a hand, grant a wish, give a hug and express our love and gratitude for the people in our lives.

Ball in Times Square

And, unlike Coach and me, who have totally dropped the ball on New Year’s celebrations, if you do venture out tonight, be careful, be safe and have a great beginning to 2014! Susan

Sweet & Easy Sopapillas

Here is a recipe for a simple and sweet dessert-Sopapillas!

Sweet 'n Easy Sopapillas Framed

These are a traditional Mexican dessert typically made with dough, but we are skipping the rising dough part and using store-bought flour tortillas instead. Perfect for a quick sweet treat, dessert or brunch. They only take about 30 minutes from start to finish, and require just a few ingredients you would most likely have in your pantry. Here is the how-to-do-it:

1.Ingredients you will need: Vegetable Oil, Honey, Sugar and Cinnamon, 6 inch Flour Tortillas.

Sopapilla Ingredients

2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut 6 inch flour tortillas into quarters. Set aside.

Sopapilla Tortilla Triangles

3. Heat oil in skillet on medium-high heat until at “water sizzling” temp. (This is when you drop a tiny bit of water into the hot oil and it bubbles and sizzles.)  Don’t overheat as you will burn the oil and the Sopapillas!

Sopapilla Oil in Pan

4. Drop the tortilla quarters into the hot pan, one at a time and not overlapping. Cook until lightly browned on the bottom. This only takes about 15 seconds so watch carefully!! Flip over and brown the other side. They will puff up in the middle too, similar to a piece of fried dough.

Sopapilla Golden Brown

5. Once golden brown, remove from heat with tongs (careful, this is hot stuff!)

Sopapilla Using Tongs

or slotted spatula and place on paper towel to drain.

Sopapilla Draining on Paper Towel

Once drained, place all of the chips into a large roasting pan.

Sopapilla In Roasting Pan

6. Once all of the tortillas are done and in the roasting pan, melt a stick of butter in a clean skillet.

Sopapilla Melting Butter for Topping

Add 1 TBLSP of honey and 2 tsp. cinnamon and sugar mix and stir just until melted and mixed. Do not overcook!

Sopapilla Butter & Honey Topping

7. Drizzle the honey butter mixture over the tortilla chips in the pan.

Sopapilla Drizzling Honey Mixture

Toss to coat thoroughly.

Tossing Sopapilla in Pan with Topping

Place in 400 degree oven for 10 minutes, tossing mid-way through, just until warmed and all the pieces are coated.

8. Remove from oven and sprinkle with additional sugar and cinnamon to desired taste.

Sopapilla Sugar and Cinnamon Topping

You can also sprinkle with a dusting of sifted confectioner’s sugar.

Sopapilla Sprinkled with Confectioners Sugar

9. Cool slightly and serve with drizzled honey or caramel sauce.

Sopapilla Drizzled with Caramel Sauce

Of course, serve them plain as well,  but I usually have a jar of Hot Fudge and Caramel Sauce in my fridge (in case of a sweet tooth emergency : )

Sopapillas with Hot fudge and Caramel Sauce

A quick, delish dessert for little $$ and time. Perfect for a light dessert. Hope you all had a sweet weekend… Susan

PS: I have a very sweet announcement to kick off the New Year! Check back 12/31 for details…

Snowflakes and Sopapillas

In the weeks leading up to Christmas, I was finishing one project after another in record time, but with no time to actually blog about them! Snowflake Blocks and Sopapillas+++ were two of my favorite projects. The blocks were a fun DIY project I had seen on The Cottage Market Blog. The Sopapillas were a yummy treat! But blocks first before dessert. This past summer Coach had dug up a basket full of old kids’ wooden building blocks.

Blocks Before

They were pretty dirty and looked like they may have had more than a few knock-downs. After a thorough cleaning with some bleach and soap, I came up with a new purpose: snowflake blocks! Each one hand-painted, no two alike-they are snowflakes, after all. But easy enough for even a novice painter to try. They are small, portable and stackable, perfect for a windowsill or mantel. Oh, and you can add some twine and make them into ornaments or gift tags. Here is the how-I-did-it:

1.Found some pen and ink style snowflakes online. The Graphic Fairy  supplied the images, thank you very much.

Black Chevron Black Squares

BLack HexagonsBlue Star

2. Painted the blocks with two coats of the base color.

CDH Paris Grey Paint

My choice was a deep grey that I have made into a chalk-like paint using some flat latex paint. I discovered the recipe on a blog called “In My Own Style”. You can transform any can of paint into a matte, chalk-like finish. Recipe here:

DIY Chalk Paint from In My Own Style

3. I printed out pen and ink snowflakes of various shapes and styles onto regular printer paper. Cut them each out so they were the size of the blocks.

Printed Snowflake Pattern

4. Using my chalk-it-up technique, I rubbed the chalk all over the back of the snowflake prints.

Chalking the pattern

Then placed the snowflake pattern on the block, chalked side down. Drew along the lines with a pen using a little pressure.

Drawing over Chalk pattern

5. Lifted the paper pattern to reveal the chalk outline image.

Chalk Pattern on Block

6. Followed along the line images with a small paintbrush and paints of various colors. I used a #3 which is pretty fine. The finer the brush tips, the thinner the lines, the more delicate the snowflake. I was going for a pastel look so it was white and pastel blues.

Snowflake Block Painting Lines

7. For the dots, I simply used the other end of the paint brush, dipping the tip into the paint

Dipping Paintbrush end in paint

and then dotting it wherever I wanted a dimensional dot along the lines.

Adding Paint Drops to Snowflake Outlines

8. After they were dried, first I coated them with the matte finish Decou-page and allowed to try. Then I added a bit of glitter by dotting the snowflakes with Americana Decoupage

Americana Decou-Page

and then shaking on the glitter. Allowed to dry. Cute!

Snowflake Blocks

9. For the oblong blocks, I painted over the grey with some pastel aqua, then added the snowflakes. For the words, I initially attempted to hand paint them, but that was a big FAIL. Nothing worse than attempting to paint something very fine when you are stressed and hurried. So I used some adhesive scrapbooking stickers that said HOPE, FAITH, JOY, etc. I affixed them, then added a coat of matte varnish to the entire block.

Snowflake Blocks HOPE JOY SNOW

10. For the ornaments/tags, I drilled a small hole in the tops of the snowflakes,

Snowflake Block Drilling Hole

then added a drop of hot glue.

Snowflake Block Hot Glue

Using a pencil tip, I inserted the ends of a cut piece of twine into the hole. Allowed to dry.

Snowflake Block Pencil Pushing

11. For a finishing touch, I brushed the tops of the blocks with the Americana Decou-page glue,

Snowflake Block Glueing Glitter

then sprinkled them with some colored glitter. Instant bling!

Snowflake Block Glitter on Top

The finished blocks looked great as tags for the Jelly Jar Soy Candles I presented as gifts this holiday season.

Snowflake Blocks with Candles.png

So if you have some old blocks laying around, or anything you can cut into blocks, this is an easy-peasy project (even for kids!) that will add some sparkle to your winter landscape. Hope you are all finally recovering from the crazy holiday week! Susan 

+++Oh, right, I was supposed to give you a recipe for Sopapillas too! Well, that project will have to wait another day : )

Happy Holiday Homes

Simply sharing some beautifully inspired holiday homes. So whether your decorating is spectacular

Wilderstein Holiday Tour by Rikki Snyder

Wilderstein Holiday Tour by Rikki Snyder

or simple

Providence Handmade

or simply adorable.

Kootutmoorut simple christmas tree

Remember that Christmas is for children, both inside

Child's Room Tobi Fairley

Child’s Room Tobi Fairley

and out.

James Curvan

You may choose red & green

AMR Design Christmas Mirror

or rustic & creme

Rustic & Creme by Miss Mustard Seed

Rustic & Creme by Miss Mustard Seed

or black and white with just a pop of red.

Casa Trend

Casa Trend

Silver

Silver Tablescape by French Flair

Silver Tablescape by French Flair

and Gold

South Shore Decorating

South Shore Decorating

Pastels

Pastel by Restyled Home

Pastel by Restyled Home

or Bold

Houzzers Deck the Mantel

Houzzers Deck the Mantel

But no matter what your style, here’s hoping you have a happy holiday home! May all your days be Merry & Bright

The Lovely Cupboard

The Lovely Cupboard

And may all your Christmases be white.

My Hydrangea Home

My Hydrangea Home

Which do you prefer? Country or city, rustic or blingy? For more inspired holiday decor, please visit my Houzz Holiday Decor or Pinterest Merry Happy Holly Day pages. Only 3 more days til the big guy comes! Keep on Christmas-ing! Susan

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