Saturday, October 30, 2010

Soup Exchange at Southern in My Heart


My friend Vanessa and her sister Heather, over at Southern In My Heart and
Gourmet Meals for Less are having a soup exchange party!
Great idea, I know!
Vanessa is so clever and creative and has such a beautiful heart and I am just meeting her sister for the time, she has a beautiful blog with so many yummy recipes!!

I love soup in the fall and winter! So easy and so delicious and it just warms the soul!

My all time favorite soup to make is white chicken chili (ok, so it not technically a soup, but close)

I got this recipe out of a little magazine that I saw while standing in line at the grocery store, Betty Crocker, and it is super easy and quick!



Easy Chicken Chili

1 tablespoon olive or vegetable oil
1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 cup)
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1 can (10 oz) condensed cream of chicken soup
1 can (14 oz) chicken broth
1 cup water
2 cups dices rotisserie chicken (from 2 to 2 1/2 lb chicken)
2 cans (15 - 16 oz each) great northern beans, drained, rinsed
1 can (4.5 oz) Old El Paso chopped green chiles, undrained
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 cup sour cream, if desired

1. In a 4-quart saucepan (I use my Dutch Oven) heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and bell pepper. Cook 2 to 3 minutes, stirring frequently until tender.

2. Stir in soup, broth and water. Cook 1 to 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until smooth an well blended. Stir in chicken, beans, chiles, oregano and cumin. heat to boiling; reduce heat to medium0low. Cook uncovered 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally until thorough
ly heated through.

3. Top each serving with sour cream if desired.

It makes enough for 6 people but I always double it because I love it and usually eat more than a serving size which is a measly 1 1/3 cup!

So, now pop on over the the soup exchange and you can give or get a new soup recipe for this fall and winter!!

Thank you Vanessa an Heather!!!

I hope that everyone has a fun and safe Halloween!!!

Linking up to Southern In My Heart and Gourmet Meals for Less Soup Exchange!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Feather and Twine Tree

Ok, I think I am safe talking about Christmas now. I Have seen some of you lovely ladies talk about Christmas already so I am hopping on the band wagon!

Let it be know that I LOVE Christmas! LOVE IT!!

I am the crazy woman that plays Christmas music right after Halloween, I put up my outside lights before Thanksgiving and on Thanksgiving night, yup, the tree goes up!!!

I love the feeling that the Holidays radiate! The love, peace and joy. The "It's a Wonderful Life" or "White Christmas" (sing to me Bing!) feeling where everyone at the end sings and dances and echoes the meaning of Christmas!

I get all giddy when I hear Johnny Mathis on the radio and that first snow fall that covers the ground completely in a blanket of white.

Knowing that Christ was born for us!

I could go on and on.....


I will save that for another day!

Right now I want to show you what I have been working on to bring with me to my last two shows.

I picked up a feather boa the other day after seeing these in the store already.

Martha Stewart

I knew I was too lazy to glue each feather on individually so I cheated with the boa!

I just wrapped it around the tree form, gluing in random spots to hold everything on,

then topped it with a pretty little green and gold bow!


(I was having fun playing around with the pictures too. I just thought that white feathers needed some glam :) )

The next tree I did was a jute twine tree. Same concept, just wrapped and wrapped and wrapped some more while gluing a strip on opposite sides so the jute stayed in place.

I glued two crochet snowflakes together (I purchased those, I do not know how to crochet, but would love to learn on day) and topped the tree!

I love the simplicity of it.

I just wanted to thank you all for you amazing support and sweet comments on my little business decision. I feel so blessed to have such wonderful friends and knowing that you have or are going through a similar situation makes me feel more at peace.

Thank you all my dear friends!

I will be partying with the linky parties on my top tab!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

On To The Next Chapter

Lately I have been feeling the stresses of life. My children are growing and have become involved in their own interests, which I love, I work part time, I keep up the house (sort of) and I own a little business called Lil Britches Handmade Frames. I have of course also started blogging, which has been such an incredible experience that I enjoy so much, but something has to give!

Growing up I never REALLY knew what I wanted to be. I knew that I enjoyed playing sports, I was the only girl in a neighborhood of about 10 boys and made myself right at home with all their sports and antics! I was a full fledged tom-boy! People asked me what I went to college for and I would tell them to play volleyball! I concentrated on that for so long I never really gave anything else a thought. I loved art and loved being creative but never pursued that aspect much, until two years ago when my best friend started her own business.

She really inspired me to start a business of my own so I ventured out and created Lil Britches. I make custom children's frames and everyday frames that I sell at craft shows during the year as well as two locations in Michigan. I really enjoyed making the frames and never really thought about the 'business' side of it. After two years I am still in the (deep) red and now I am finding it hard to put aside time to make them. I don't like the feeling of "having" to do something. I started the business because I loved just making frames but now that time is precious and that feeling is there, I have become less interested in making them and to me that is not fair to the people that I am making them for. If my all my heart isn't into it, I don't want to do it.

So after reading different posts about friends and fellow bloggers who are feeling the same way about similar points in their life and reaching into my heart, I have decided to cut my losses and close my little business. I feel bad but at the same time I feel good. I have opened up my self to spend more time with the kids, that feeling of being rushed into making the frames is gone and I have a little more time to pursue other interests that I have been wanting to do.

I know that this isn't a life changing decision but a decision that has been weighing on my mind and heart for a while. I am so glad that I started the business because it gave me an awareness of myself that I didn't know I had, a source of self confidence that needed to come out, and another way to discover what is inside of me.

I look forward to whatever chapter opens up for me next and time to just spend doing things that I love without that little nagging feeling that I 'have' to go do something. I still have two more craft shows this year and will hopefully sell most of my inventory along with a couple of other projects that I have been working on. So, with the new year, hopefully a new chapter will open up and I will discover other things about myself.

Sorry this was long but I wanted to share with you, my friends, what has been on my mind and it feels good to just put it out there. So thank you if you stuck with this post to the end and thank you to my family and friends for all your support during this chapter in my life.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Playing Around With Chicken Wire

I have a TON of chicken wire left over from my entryway locker and have been trying to come up with ideas to use some of it up.

Last week I played around a bit with it and came up with these.

I love candles in the winter!
Everything feels so cozy when I have them lit around the house.
I found the silver bases in the garage that I think were a part of something that I purchased at Ikea. I then wrapped and formed the chicken wire to fit inside the rectangular bases.

The next idea I had was pretty simple, just cut the wire to desired height and wrap into a cylinder.

Easy peasy!

Well, except for the cuts on my hand! I need to learn to wear gloves when working with the wire.

I purchased this wooden pedestal today at Meijers for 50% off, placed the chicken wire on it and wha-lah,
an instant chicken wire-pedestal-candle thing!!

I also made another cylander wire form and just placed it on my sofa table and put a candle in the center.

So, there you have it, nothing too big and fancy but I love the sparkle it gives and shadows that they cast when the candles are lit at night.
And, I love the look, a little bit of country chic.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

A Bedroom Promise

Alright girlies, get your minds out of the gutter this post is about a promise to a little girl, my little girl.

For about five years now we having been having issues with my daughter sleeping at night. it occurs from about August to November each year, not sure why but so far we have come to the conclusion that it is the change into a new grade and a new year of school beginning. She is a creature of habit and when her schedule is changed it is sometimes hard for her to adjust. From that point things usually spiral out of control. I won't bore you with the details but we have tried very hard to ease her tensions and worries with not much success.

So I offered up a deal.

I told her that if she made a real effort to help us help her I would redo her bedroom.

She really liked that idea, quickly stating that she would like to keep it her beach theme (like mother like daughter) but just a little different.

I told her of course!

So today I scanned through some pictures of bedrooms that I think that she might like.

This is currently the bedding that she has from Pottery Barn Kids. I still really like it and so does she so I think that we would keep it.

Pottery Barn Kids

(I know that I could have taken a picture of her room now but I was lazy)

I would love the surfboard in her room so I have been keeping my eye out for one and I love the lights that hang above the bed as well.
This is a little too much pink for her, she will be 13 in a couple months and as much as I love all the pink, I think that she is past that a bit so I will out the blues and greens from the bedding.

A huge problem that we have is we have nowhere for her and her friend to sleep when she has sleep overs. She has laminate floors and so does the rest of our house, not very comfy to sleep on.

I really like the idea of the way the beds are in the pic below. They would be a great spot to sit during the day and when she has a friend over they would have a comfy place to sleep!

Her room is not very big so there is not enough room for her bed, dressers, bookshelves and a desk. I like the idea of a small table for the nightstand. It can double as a writing/computer table (although it would need a drawer to put all her junk in) This room is very soft and calming, something that might help her sleep.

This is my favorite room!! I love everything about it! The walls, the ceiling, the angles! I also love the little metal basket/locker things on the wall. I will be keeping my other eye for that!

We still have a ways to go, but I was hoping that if she saw some images it might help a bit, and she also gets a big kick when I talk about her on my blog!

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!!!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Bi-Fold Door Screen

A while ago I took the closet doors off my son's closet thinking that I was going to do something spectacular with curtains or other doors.

Well, I never did.

His closet just sits there open to the world, full of messy shoes, close that he pulls of the hangers and cars, cars, cars!!

We had tucked the old doors in our shed until I had something better to do with them.

I posted yesterday about my sweet friend Deborah from With all my Heart....Deborah and her gorgeous shelf that her and her hubby made from old shutters.

She inspired me to go get those doors out of storage and do something with them.

So I hauled them out

Gave them a couple coats of white paint

Distressed the heck out of them!
(I got a little frustration out with the chain and screw driver)

I have this little corner in my living room where the chase lounge is. This is my favorate corner, esprcailly when we have the fire going.

But there is also this big, ugly box that sits there.

A subwoofer I am told it is called.

I have no idea what it does but hubby says it make the sounds "really cool" when we watch movies or something like that.

See it back there?

I tried putting pictures on it to make it look like a table but it was still ugly!


I covered it,

with my bi-fold doors!

I really like how the screen turned out. It adds height to my little corner and best yet, it covers up the ugly woofer box!!

I still have two more doors left and I am thinking of adding one more to the screen to make it a little wider.

So that was my big tease!

Not a huge project but its purpose was much needed.

I will be linking up with the linky parties on the top tab

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Weekend and A Feature

This weekend I did a little bit of everything..

We watched some volleyball!

My daughter is #2!

It is 7th grade, they are all so cute and little!

We roasted marshmallows!

This is how I love mine....put it in the fire and let burn until is it crispy!!!


I wanted to show you how cozy my living room is at night with the fire going!
My friend dear Tracy, from Tracy's Trinkets and Treasures posted about enjoying what you have.
(click here to see her brief, but oh so true post)

So, I did just that!
Last night and again tonight.
I feel so relaxed and cozy in my little living room with the roaring fire.

(Linking to Bright, Bold and Beautiful to show my favorite cozy spot)

I also wanted to feature what my beautiful friend Deborah, from With all my Heart..Deborah, made last week with her hubby.

He found these shutters on the side of the road and picked them up for her (knowing how much she loves shutters)

SO sweet!

Together they turned someone else's trash into her treasure!!

Isn't is gorgeous!!!??

When I saw how these came together my jaw dropped! It looks like something out of Pottery Barn!!!

Take a minute and go say hi to her, she is so sweet and the title of her blog describes her perfectly! You also have to see her pieces that she filled up the shelf with, if you love the beach, these are a must see!!

She also inspired me to go get those closet bi-fold doors out of my shed and do something with them.

So, I did!

Come back and I will show you what I made!!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Look What I Won!!!

I know, two posts in one day, I am such an over achiever, or something like that....

Anyway, I was so excited about the these great pillows that I won last week over at
Laura Trevey's Bright, Bold and Beautiful that I HAD to show you!!!

(Her blog is also a must see, so many wonderful inspirations, and she is a phenomenal watercolor painter and designer!)

They are from Pillows and Pillows and are gorgeous!

I got to choose TWO pillows and these were my choices!

They go so perfect with Tracy's pillow that she sent me!

(sorry about the pictures, I was in a hurry)

Thank you Laura and thank you Pillows and Pillows!!

I hope everyone has a great weekend, mine will be busy with my daughters volleyball and finishing up some projects that I will share with you next week!!

CSN Upcoming Review

I know that holidays are coming up on us fast and some of you may be thinking that your dining room table is not big enough to put all the wonderful family and friends that come over to celebrate with you!!

CSN stores has so many varieties that you are sure to find your dream dining room table, you can spend all day just looking through the endless possibilities!!

This is one of my favorites.

I will also be reviewing one of their many selections of kitchen knives. I love making soups, stews and chili for fall and I will be putting the knife to the test!

Come back and see how it goes!


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