Thursday, January 30, 2014

Okay....Don't Laugh at Me!

I know some of you are going to think I'm absolutely silly, but I know I've got some kindred spirits out there that are going to completely understand.

I froofified my kitchen sink.  Yes I did.

Did it need to be done?  Did I go out and buy anything new?  Of course not.  I just grabbed some things out of cupboards and I have a pretty little "doing the dishes" spot.  (Not that I do the dishes very often - gotta' say thanks to Worker Bee and even Baby Bee.)  But shouldn't they have a sweet little spot to view while they do those dishes?  (I'm nothing if not thoughtful of the people who do my grunge work for me.)

And I'll tell you the truth, I just looked at that little spot and thought this sure could be prettier when I got home from work today.  No other reason than that.  Sudden inspiration! (or procrastination - I'll let you decide.)

Be sure to appreciate my vintage kitchen tile.  That stuff is older than me!  (Over 60 years old!)  It's such a weird pattern and yet, I kind of still like it.   Dream kitchen would be a black soapstone and then white subway tile, but that ain't happenin' any time soon!

Started with this lovely tray.....

Added this soap dish I've had for ages.  Anybody remember when Eddie Bauer had a home store?  It's been in hibernation but it's back out again.
See what it's going to be used for?  Bar soap just doesn't quite work by the sink - gotta' love the invention of liquid soap. One of my teacher buddies gave me the smiley face sponge.  It was on Shark Tank.  (Not that exact sponge my sillies!)
Yummy citrusy soaps and lotions on one end of the tray...

(Does citrus just smell super clean to you too?)
And a little vintage milk jug to hold  the veggie cleaning brush on the other end.

Now isn't that pretty?  Almost makes me want to do the dishes.  Almost.

Do you ever get that urge?  I think I'm all about dressing up the utilitarian!

Thanks for buzzing along with me.

Making a Sweet Bee family classic tonight for dinner....



Sunday, January 12, 2014

I Couldn't Resist...

....but now what am I going to do with it?
I've mentioned before how we have this WONDERFUL consignment store in town and I always find something there to treasure.  You can find upcycling, furniture, and vintage items.  I, of course, am completely drawn to the vintage items and that's usually what I can't resist.

I sell things there every once in a while and I just have the owner keep my profits there on my account so I can buy things when I'm sorely tempted!
And people?  I was sorely tempted!!!  

Wouldn't you be too?

So....voila.....I bought this....
It's chipped and split and not in good condition at all....

but it grabbed my buzzing little heart!

And then I spotted this great vase.
I cannot tell who the manufacturer is....
Could be HAGEN? HAGER?  Do you know what it might be?  I would love to know.  
(Worker Bee even tried to make a rubbing of it, but we still couldn't read it.  He might be the real sweet bee, not me!)
I even found the sweetest little vintage hankie that seemed to just marry both the vase and vintage child's dresser!  

Serendipity!  I love it!

And now I have a dilemma.  Where on earth am I going to put it?

What do you think?

Buzz, buzz, buzz,

Monday, January 6, 2014

A Christmas Table

Are you sick of Christmas?  

Or are you like me, and although I don't mind when Christmas is over, I still love to think about it and plan for it for next year?

Well, in the spirit of enjoying Christmas all year round, I'm bringing you the table setting we had for our Christmas this year.

For several years I've wanted to use a wreath as a charger for my vintage plates.  I even bought the wreaths several years ago but just never quite got it done.
I used my Royal Ironstone "Memory Lane" for the plates.  I picked up about 8-10 place settings on eBay several years ago.  I'm not too crazy about the cups and saucers though, so I used some mugs I picked up at Pottery Barn about 5 years ago.
And of course, I had to pull out my Susan Branch coffee pot, sugar, and creamer.  I bought this a few years ago at our local hardware/gift store.  
I kept seeing it before Christmas and I wanted it, but I just couldn't buy it at full price.  At this store everything is 50% off the day after Christmas so I scurried down there when they opened and scooped them up!  
I even had an email from someone who wanted to buy it from seeing it on my blog. I was tempted, but it's one of those pieces that as soon as I see it, it brings out that warm Christmas feeling.
For flatware I used mismatched pearl handle and a set I picked up at our local consignment store from National Silver.  (Truth be told, I only have 4 place settings of the pearl so I made do - I kind of like it.)
I also used my wedding crystal for juice - it's Gorham "Lady Anne."
Plus I had to pull out this pretty depression glass pitcher for juice.  Got this at an estate sale filled with beautiful things, but they were all a little pricey so I only picked up this for me.  (Sorry etsy shop!)
The napkins are ones I pull out every Christmas.  I got those at our beloved Gottschalks department store (that went bankrupt in 2009 - still miss that store every single Christmas).  
For the centerpiece, I used a variety of small Christmas trees and packages.  Also popped a tree topper into a milk glass vase.  (I'm pretty sure I stole this idea from Chris at Red Gate Farm.)

I also have to share my FAVORITE tree....
We have this popped up on a little side table behind our reading chair.  Love the color combination - white, red, green, and blue!!!

So Merry Christmas for 2014!!! 
(It's not too early, right?)

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry, Merry Christmas!

Hope your holiday is filled with sweet surprises!

A peek through my kitchen's been very bright and sunny and warm this Christmas.  It is usually cold and damp and foggy.
We are busy baking in the kitchen this morning in preparation for our holiday at my sister's house.

Cooling right now is a Chocolate Peppermint Schnapps Cake
currently baking away is a Pumpkin Brûlée Pie in a Chocolate Crust.

Oh my....that pie filling is divine!  It's from Bon Appetit magazine and I heard about it on NPR (love me my NPR) from a pair of bloggers....

I searched high and low for a kitchen torch but couldn't find one, so Wood Bee is loaning me his vintage blowtorch that was my grandpa's.
Here's the vintage box it came in - sold it on etsy.
We are looking forward to spending time with my family and chatting with Worker Bee's family over the phone.

For unto you a Son is born....

Blessings to you and yours this Christmas!


Sunday, December 22, 2013

Here's a Cast Picture....

Well, you asked, and this is all I've managed to find....
Here is the entire cast of the Best Christmas Pageant Ever!
(Including Worker Bee, Baby Bee, and me!!!)

I played Mrs. McCarthy (although one night on stage I accidentally called myself Mrs. McCartney).  She is one of the church ladies.  If you've ever seen the play, she is the one who thinks Imogene Herdman's cigar smoke in the ladies room is actually a fire.  So every night I got to walk on stage sniffing the air, then walk right up front and yell, "Fire!  There's a fire!"  And then all kinds of chaos breaks out.  (I was almost knocked down one night when some running children decided it would be more fun to somersault their way off stage.)  

Worker Bee played Bob Bradley, the father of the narrator, Beth, and the husband of the pageant director, Grace.  He had the best line, said over and over, "Do I have to go?"  My friends all said he was just playing himself!  Well....sort of.....

And Baby Bee was in the angel choir.  She didn't have any lines, but she sang beautifully.  Although, the girl who played Maxine - the narrator of the church production of the pageant in the play - hmmmm.....that gets a bit complicated - had to go to a couple of basketball tournaments.  The director asked Kiley to step in and play her part!  That was quite exciting for us and her.  

So, I highly recommend that if you have ever had the slightest desire to appear on stage in a play, that you go for it!  It was a wonderful experience and I would love to do it again!  And, I even eventually got all my lines memorized!  Thanks Worker Bee for helping me with that.  (And thanks Baby Bee for keeping it under your hat that you heard me practicing them every morning in the shower!)

The next show is South Pacific....
am I brave enough to audition???
(And am I crazy enough to do this again during the school year?)

Saturday, December 21, 2013

And Here's the Post About What My Third Graders Made This Year

I'm not sure where the idea got into my head.  I know it's not an original idea.  Probably spotted it on Pinterest or something.  This year it was getting down to the wire on what my students were going to make as gifts for their parents this year.    In fact, there was a very good chance they might not have made anything, but luckily inspiration struck just in time and we baked up a little something sweet for our families.

We made cupcake ornaments!  
If I do say so myself, they turned out pretty stinkin' cute!

Here's what you need to make these:
•a selection of glass ornaments (we bought brown/chocolate and red/red velvet ones)
•acrylic craft paint in colors of your choice (we had ivory, candy pink, and ruby red)
•assorted glitter (we used silver and crystal clear)
•foil cupcake liners (used the Wilton since they are papery on the inside)
•a bunch or two of faux berries (found these at Michaels for about $1 a bunch)
•a low temp glue gun
•and, of course, a venti latte from Starbucks in my new venti sized travel mug (I've waited a loooooong time to get one of those.....a very looooooong time.)

1.  Start off by painting a first coat around the top of the ornament and let dry.

2.  Paint a second coat and while it is still wet, sprinkle with the glitter.
3.  After it is dry, hot glue the cupcake wrapper to the ornament (we only glued the bottom of the liner to the ornament).
4.  Snip off one of the berries from the faux bunch and hot glue it to the ornament to resemble a cherry resting on top.

5.  Last step, thread some baker's twine through the ornament hook and tie a knot!

A Christmas cupcake ornament!

Seriously, this is one of the easiest AND cutest projects we've ever done for Christmas.

Oh and I also glued a picture of each student to the bottom of the cupcake liner to make them a bit more personal.

It's not too late for you to pull off this project!  

Merry Christmas!!!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

A Little Christmas Treat

Hello???  Have you given up on me?  I sure hope not, but boy I have just not had time to buzz by for a visit or even hardly think of a post.

However, a wee bit of inspiration struck when I was packaging up some treats that Baby Bee and I conspired on to sell at her Winter Program bake sale for middle school band.

Seriously, I always think a little bit of pretty packaging always makes something look more appealing and shows how much you care.

Baby Bee baked some delicious Peppermint Chocolate Miniature Bundt Cakes – I think they might be called Bundt-lette cakes – and I just had to do my best to make them sell for top dollar.
I  made some sweet little tags using digital scrapbook paper and a fun font.  
Then, I put each cake in a little clear treat bag, 
 threw in some peppermint candies, and tied them up with baker's twine – red and white, of course.

And then I cute would it be to make these little cakes with different flavors, like maybe Kahlua or cinnamon and then toss in some coffee beans or cinnamon candies?'s an idea, right?  Is it a good one?
 Would you buy these at a bake sale?
 What would you pay?  (Not sure what they ended up selling for.)
Well, the play has now closed - looking for pictures - I never had a chance to take any myself - to share with you.  

And I can't wait to show you what my students made for Christmas gifts this year!  They turned out so cute.

Thanks for still buzzing along with me!  Only one more day of school and then it's Winter Break!!!!  Can't wait!