Friday, December 31, 2010

new year's eve walk

I couldn't think of a better way to celebrate the last day of the year than a walk in one of our most favorite places, The Ward Pound Ridge Reservation.  We (myself, my husband and my dog) spent about an hour trekking through the snow covered paths, taking in the fresh air, jumping around in the drifts and admiring how different our surroundings looked (we received about a foot and a half of the fluffy white stuff earlier this week).  It was the perfect ending to the year and gave us some time to reflect on all that has happened in 2010.  I wish you all a very happy and peaceful 2011.  

large oak tree, damaged by a storm a few years ago and later turned into a sculpture by a local artist

also part of the oak tree

What are your plans for the new year?

Monday, December 27, 2010

a little bit of snow

So we finally got some snow here on the east coast...a blizzard in fact.  The airports were closed, trains were delayed, roads were treacherous and well, basically we are covered with about a foot and a half of that fluffy white stuff.  Good thing we had no where to go.  Our new dog Mel was not so happy at first...but after a path was carved for him, he started to find the joy in the powder below his feet.  He is all white however, so we put on a bright red fleecy jacket to make sure we didn't loose him out there.  In case you don't have any snow where you are...I'll share some of mine...I have more than enough :)
very thankful for the snow blower

Mel checking out the drifts

buried garden gnome

my husband finished with the dig out  & taking a break with Mel

I hope you are enjoying your holidays...We spent our day digging out and frolicking in the snowdrifts!  How did you spend yours?

Thursday, December 23, 2010

holiday happiness

the tree at rockeller center, 2010

With Christmas only 2 days away, I thought it only appropriate to make a holiday happiness list. Things can definitely get crazy and hectic around the holidays, but there are still an abundance of things I am thankful for and they all just make me so happy...

1. Going to see the tree at Rockefeller Center in NYC.  I go almost every never gets old :)
2. Freelancing for the past 2 weeks with my old (and some new) friends and colleagues at The Martha Stewart Show.  What a great bunch of super talented people.  
3. The yummy smells of baking.  Finally got a chance to bake today and made my friend Molly's trusted gingerbread cake.  She uses this recipe from Gramercy is delicious!
4. Fresh cut Christmas trees... nothing beats the smell of a fresh cut tree...especially when you cut it yourself!
5. Christmas music...really, I can't get enough of it!
6. Gift opening with my nieces and nephews...I love watching the kid's faces and seeing them tear into packages.
8. Being warm by a roaring fire.
9. Knowing I will be celebrating the holidays with my family and friends.
10. Giving our new dog Mel a warm and loving home.  My husband and I adopted Mel about 3 weeks ago from the Yonkers Animal Shelter.  He is an amazing guy, adjusting so well and really is just a wonderful dog.  We are so happy to have him in our family.

Mel ♥
What makes you happy this holiday season?

Sunday, December 19, 2010

upcycled holiday cards

upcycled holiday card - Warren Kimble Cards

I am finally getting around to decorate the tree we got 2 weeks ago.  As I started unpacking my decorations, I found several ziplocs full of holiday cards from the years past.  They were just too pretty to throw I save them each year thinking I will do something with them...yet there they sit, away in a bin, year after year.  I did a little research to see what I could come up with...after all, I do have an empty tree to fill!

photo courtesy of martha stewart website
Martha Stewart (of course) has a whole gallery filled with Christmas card craft ideas.  Check it out, so many great ones from ornaments, to tags, to garlands.

photo courtesy of Bobbi Lewin
Bobbi @ Bobbi's Art created a really sweet green holiday garland out of holiday cards.  Her whole blog is very fun, take a moment to look it over.

After being inspired by all the great ideas I found online...I decided to try out one of my own as well.  I took out some of my bottle cap supplies from when I was making vintage bottle cap pendants not too long ago and decided to make a few bottle cap ornaments for my tree.  These ornaments are very simple to create. 
 Using a 1" circle punch, I punched rounds from the holiday cards.  I used a small dot of craft glue, Sobo works great, to adhere the circle to the inside of the bottle cap.  
Then for the hanger, I cut a piece of ribbon and used a small dot of hot glue on the back of the bottle cap.  I bet a few dabs of glue and a sprinkling of clear glitter would be the perfect finishing touch to add that extra sparkle to these sweet little ornaments!

If you don't have the time or you just don't think you are the crafty type of person...don't be so quick to throw away your cards after the holidays.  St. Jude's Ranch for Children is a wonderful organization that will accept your old cards and the children they work with turn the previous years cards into new cards!  They also accept all occasion greeting cards, so be sure to go to their website and read all about how to mail them your old cards not only from the holidays, but all year round!

Now...I still haven't finished decorating my tree or made my holiday cards this year and Christmas is less than a week away!  How are you doing with all your holiday preparations?!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

shop til you drop...

At this time of the year, just about everyone is running around looking for those perfect gifts for everyone on their lists.  If you happen to be around the tri-state area...I have a few ideas for you!  This coming Monday I will be participating in the 'Shop til You Drop' event at Lua Restaurant in Hoboken, NJ.  This shopping/charity event takes place Monday, Dec 13, from 7 - 10 pm.  Why not stop in and take advantage of some fabulous cocktail specials while picking up some great holiday gifts, all at the same time?

Looking for another idea?  Take a ride to The Putnam Arts Council in Mahopac, NY and check out the Crafts on the Hill...their 16th Annual Juried Showcase & Sale.  Open daily 12 - 5 pm (closed Mondays) through December 19th.  I am very pleased to have been asked back for a second time this year ♥

All done with everyone on your list?  Treat deserve it...
and let me know what treasures you find ♥

Sunday, December 5, 2010

martha stewart's holiday open house!

As I now start decorating my own home for the holidays...I wanted to share with you the preview for Martha Stewart's Holiday Open House...premiering tomorrow on the Hallmark Channel.  I had a chance to freelance on this production as a set decorator and I am very excited to see how it all came together.  
I will definitely be watching and I hope you will too!  
Take a sneak peak!
Tune in Monday night, December 6, 8 pm eastern/ 7 pm central - 
on the Hallmark Channel!
Check your local listings as well if you are not sure about when it airs in your area.  
I am sure you will be inspired...happy watching!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

the martha stewart holiday craft fair

The Martha Stewart Holiday Craft Fair is this weekend!  If you are in or around NYC Saturday, I suggest you go.  As many of you know, I was a set decorator on the Martha Stewart Show for about 8 years...then left a little over 2 years ago to get my Master degree in art education.  At any is a great company to work for with so many talented artists.  This is your opportunity to meet these amazing artists and see what they are all about.  When people ask me what I miss most about working there, on the top of the list is the people!  I miss working with my friends, the wonderful group I collaborated with everyday.  Many of these fabulous artists will be at the sale on Saturday!  My bff Daniele (from Sweet Dani B) who has appeared on the show numerous times making her spectacular cookies with Martha, will be selling many of her most popular cookies.  Hosanna from the tv art department will have her beautiful acorn husband bought me one last year and I have since bought several others as gifts.  Another tv crafter, Kristin, will be selling a new collection of necklaces - I also saw she has them on her etsy shop, each one has a different charitable symbolic meanings...check them out, very cool!  Oh, and for those of you who love have to try the best pimen'a cheese ever!  My friend Kelli makes it and sold out within the first few hours last year!  Also last year, the tv art director Anduin was selling these really sweet stuffed mom bought one for my niece.  I hope she is back with new creations this year! This is just a tiny sampling of what you will find at the sale.  There will be a myriad of artists there selling all kinds of beautifully crafted items.  Last year I remember seeing ceramics, felted goods, clothes, ornaments, jewelry, food items, metal works, stuffed animals, knitted/crocheted items, glass works, bead work, paper made items, wooden crafts...the list goes on and on and on!  The most creative people imaginable will be here.  One hint I can give you...COME EARLY!  The line gets really long as the day goes on.  I can't wait to see what other incredible ideas the rest of the employees have come up with this year.  I hope to see you there too!

my niece Lilah loves Sweet Dani B's cookies!

Kelli with her helper & another talented MS employee Kait....
and the famous pimen'a cheese!

one of Hosanna's acorns I gave as a shower gift this year

Happy handmade shopping...the best gift you can give is one that is handmade ♥