Saturday, December 31, 2011

Our Salad Table & Veggie Garden: Carrot Harvest!

Happy New Year!

Here in Texas, Winter weather is ...well....weird.  Last week, it was rainy and 40 it was beautiful, sunny, and 80 degrees!  It was a perfect day to get outside and weed the yard and garden.  Unfortunately, our Salad Table and veggie garden took a hit from the freezing temperatures we had earlier this year and the back-and-forth hot-cold stuff just confused all of my plants.  The carrots, however, made it and we harvested them today!  My son was so excited!!
Our carrot crop on 12/31/11!
We have so enjoyed our Salad Table (and our container plants)!   I first saw the Salad Table idea at the San Antonio Stock Show in 2010 (The Texas Agriculture group always has a great display and they offer awesome tips!).  I love that the table is accesible for wheelchair-bound folks (my Dad is an amputee, so I notice these things) and those who have a hard-time bending. It also keeps pests (like our dirt-loving dog, Layla) out and it can be moved around too. 

When I purchased our first home this past Spring, it didn't take long before my son and I started our garden project. We built the table in a day and did the planting the next. We used the awesome tutorial and plans from the Grow It Eat It program at the University of Maryland website. Our 105 degree Summer days didn't help much, but we had a successful first run especially after I installed a drip irrigation system with a timer...easy and really inexpensive! 

12/02/11 So, this is what broccoli
looks like outside of the produce section!
10/17/11 Green Beans!
08/22/11 Our window box
of carrot seeds

12/02/11 Our tomatoes
In addition to the Salad Table, we also planted tomatoes in various containers and baby carrots in a window box on the fence.  
Tomato plant and cage in a shopping bag

The absolute best tomato plant grew in a recyclable bag from H.E.B. (our local grocery chain) know the big bags you buy for $1?1?  Simply cut some drainage holes in the bottom, fold the bag down a little, and fill with dirt and a seedling!  The bag can be stored folded for the next season. And since, they come in a variety of colors and designs, you could make a themed garden!

We were so sad when the freeze took most of our veggies out...but we are not defeated because we are already planning our SPRING GARDEN!  I'll keep you posted.....and just look at these carrots!
They grew in all shapes and sizes!

Friday, December 30, 2011

Owl Rag Quilt and Pillow

You can see the layout of the squares here...
each is 6" x 6".
This month, I made a fun (and not so complicated) rag quilt for my friend Jan and her soon-to-arrive baby girl, Brynn.  I love making rag quilts...first of all, because I think they are super cute and secondly, because they are super easy!!  Even a beginner sewer can do a rag quilt and have it turn-out beautifully! 
Hmmm, there's a thought......maybe I'll do a little rag quilt tutorial on here soon...... 

 Anyway, I made the quilt on the smallish side (like a lap quilt) and included a cute decorative pillow to go along with it.  The color-scheme for this quilt was based on Jan's nursery colors. Since I have a boy myself, I enjoy making "girly" stuff from time to time....although I have to admit that I sometimes find so much pink overwhelming

Each of the four corners of the quilt has a different owl appliqued on it (Jan loves owls!) and the center square has an owl-themed alphabet letter and the baby's name on it. 

All of the appliques are from Planet Applique (love their stuff!).  I have been addicted to their site since I bought my embroidery machine last year.

The pillow idea came from a few postings I saw on Pinterest.  I went through several and finally decided that I liked the face on this pattern the best....and it was super easy to put together!  Oh, and the pattern was FREE!  Gotta love those free patterns.  Check out this site for the tutorial that I used for the pillow:

The completed gift...a rag quilt, pillow, and a book
(Controversial book, I know, but it worked with my son and
I totally disagree with all the hype...On Becoming Baby Wise)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Project Slideshow

I finally figured out how to get my slideshow can find anything on the internet, you know.  Anyway, there it is on the right-hand side of the page.  I will continue to add photos as I go, but there are quite a few already.  If you see a project you like or have questions about, please send me a comment!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas
May you be reminded of His PEACE
as you celebrate the birth of our Savior!
Got the idea from a Pinterest post and then made it my own...Love how it turned out!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Chalkboard-footed Wineglasses

Since it is only two days until Christmas, I thought it only fitting that my inaugural post be about a Christmas gift that I made.  I first saw the idea on one of my favorite (and most addicting) websites, Pinterest.  As soon as I saw these "chalkboard wineglasses", I knew these were the perfect gift to take to our family gift exchange....there are several wine lovers in attendance that I knew would "fight" for this gift. I was right...they were a hit!

They were easier to make than I envisioned and hardly took any time at all.  After reading several tutorials, I finally settled on this one from Always Order Dessert.  What I liked about this one, was that she used chalkboard spray paint rather than dipping the glasses into paint as mentioned on other tutorials (that just seemed messy).  The only thing I did not see mentioned on her tutorial is the last step....prepping the chalkboard for use by rubbing the entire surface with the side of a piece of chalk.  Wipe this off and then you are ready to go.  
I made four (4) glasses and then packed them with bubble wrap, sparkly filler, and tissue paper in a pretty box with a lid.  I added a box of white chalk and a box of colored chalk to complete the gift.  I wish I would have thought to take a picture of the complete package. 

The completed glasses (that is a quilt in progress in the background....I always have more than one project going at a time!)

The glasses are hand-wash only and really make a neat gift for winelovers.  Several people have mentioned that they have seen similar products available online for $20 a glass!  Crazy, huh?  I bought Libbey glasses at Garden Ridge for $2/each and the RustOleum spray paint was around $5 at Home Depot.  I already had the blue painter's tape (what crafter doesn't?).  Whether you make them for yourself or as a gift...enjoy!