HoneyBee Mantel

HoneyBee Mantel
HoneyBee Mantel

The only way I know on how to start out this post is to just call myself out.  I’ve been blogging for over 2 years and have been decorating my faux mantel.  But here is the deal…..I’ve ALWAYS called it a MANTLE not a MANTEL.  Yep, I’ve been calling it the wrong thing all these years without anyone telling me.  Tragic I know.  Don’t believe me, just Google it!  (I should have done that the first blog post I wrote about said mantle mantel.)  A blogger friend was so sweet to point it out to me this past weekend on facebook.  Thank you Kim at The Kim Six Fix for correcting me so I don’t look like a blogging dork anymore.  Talk about a total “duh” moment.  I’ve always seen it as MANTLE and not the correct way of MANTEL.  Well, now I know!

Maybe I should have paid more attention in spelling and English while in school.  Throw me a calculus problem and I’m your gal.  I’ve never been your gal if you throw me a sentence diagram, novel, or vocabulary word list.  Just ask my kids.  When my son was in 4th grade I had to call his English teacher (who had been there since they built the school and was about to retire) and I had to tell her this.  “Mrs. Huffman, I’m Bracken’s mom.  I hate to admit this, but I have a bachelor’s in mechanical engineering and my MBA.  Now though, I have no idea how to help my son with this 4th grade English!’  Luckily she was such a sweet lady.  Her reply was, “That’s alright honey.  If we don’t use it, we just forget it.”  Whew!  So as you read my blog, don’t judge my grammar or writing style. In return, I won’t judge your math skills.

So let’s get on to the summer MANTEL!  Or as I call it, the summer fantel (faux mantel).  It warmed up rather quick here in Texas this spring, so the bees came out early.  Now with all the rain we have had (21 out of the last 26 days), there is plenty of things blooming for their pollination.  So with all this buzz going on outdoors, it gave way to the inspiration behind my summer mantel…..Be My Honeybee!


I’m loving the neutral glittery goodness going on!  I got the cute little honeybees from the Dollar Tree about a month ago.  I took them and painted them with a cream colored Valspar paint sample from Lowe’s.


Once they were dry, I added some gold leaf to the bee stripes and wings.  I just bought this gold leafing from Hobby Lobby.


All bees need some flowers for pollination, so I made some from coffee filters.  I used 4 coffee filters per flower.  Here is how I folded each filter.


Then you crunch up that quarter piece and add four of them together.  You twist them together on the bottom to make a stem, and then staple them together.  After you staple, just fluff them out to make a flower.


You know I’m about using what you have, so that’s exactly what I did.  I had the coffee filters for the flowers, and then I used the glitter mason jars Rev made me for Mother’s Day.  I also used a wine bottle I had repurposed to make it look vintage.  Lucky for me, I was able to use a real honeycomb that Gary found last summer in a small tree.  Once the bees were gone he snatched it thinking I might use it.  He knows me!  Then to make my big honeycomb, I used this fabulous packing paper from the Savannah Bee Company that was wrapped around our honey we brought back from out Tybee Vacation.  When I unpacked the honey, I was smitten by the paper, and I knew that paper would come in handy!


I wrapped the honeycomb paper around the window frame I use for my mantels.  Hung the boxwood wreath back up, and then stuffed in the coffee filter flowers and attached the honeybees.


Here is that real honeycomb on the bottom shelf.   Then I made a little pennant banner to hang in between the shelves.


Isn’t it so cute!


You could even use this theme for Valentine’s Day.  Hmmm….it may be used again come February 2016!  So tell me, what’s all the buzz about with your summer so far?



Memorial Day

Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day!  Thank you so much to all the men and women who have served, are serving, or sacrificed for our freedom.  May God bless each and every one of them and their families.  Revyn went to Washington D.C. a few summers ago and we wanted to share this picture with you that she took.  There is so much emotion that comes when you look at it.  It was one of her favorites that she took on that trip.  Thank you soldiers!


Repurposed Salvage Mailbox

Repurposed Salvage Mailbox
Repurposed Salvage Mailbox

Welcome back to another edition of Flea Market Friday!  I’m still working on flipping the items I showed you that I brought back from SNAP.  Remember me telling you about our thrifting field trip to Euro Treasures Antiques led by the fantastic and crazy girls from All Things Thrifty and Vintage Revivals.  Everyone found lots of fantastic treasures that day.  I already shared a necklace I made from a rosette I purchased at George’s Salvage.  I’m still loving it!

Well today I took your comments you left on the post showing you the stuff I brought back from SNAP, and used them in my flip.  You all had some great ideas!  So I decided to do a reader repurpose on the mailbox.  I took the “paint it red” idea from Karen (@Somewhat Quirky Design) and Lisa (@Concord Cottage).  Then I took the idea from Kirby (@Kirb Appeal) and added a license plate.  I didn’t use the Utah plate because I decided to go with a Texas theme after I painted it red.  You know Deep In The Heart of Texas.  Nothing like a little vintage TX farming love for me.  Here is how this little diamond in the rough turned out.


The first thing we did was to clean it up.  We removed the stickers, used a grinder to remove this piece that held an emblem, and then straightened out the top flap.  I washed it up and then painted it red with spray paint from Rustoleum.


Now we needed to know where to bend the plate.  I placed it on the mailbox where I was going to make my bends and then marked one side.  G marked the other side so I could snap this picture.  Gotta have that team work because he is a total tool man, NOT a cameral man.

MailboxPlateMarkingNext we bent the license plate by using press brake the G has.  This guy has EVERY tool you can imagine.  I was going to try and bend it over the work table, but he corrected me real quick saying that’s not how you do it.  So break out the heavy equipment.  Here was a problem we had.  Doing it like this actually scratched the front of the plate, and I couldn’t have that.  So we got another plate and did the same technique except used cardboard under it.  Worked like a charm.


The last step was to attach the plate with screws.  You could probably just glue it on with E6000, but my hubby believes in making sure it’s snug.  He has a metal punch so we punched 2 small holes in the side of the plate.  Then we put the plate over the mailbox and used 2 small self tapping screws (from Home Depot) to attach it.

You are probably thinking I will use this on my house for mail, but that is not the case.  I live 1000-foot off the main road, and our mailman only delivers off the road in his car.  So instead of collecting our mail outside, I am going to use it to collect our mail inside.  There are days I bring home the mail and it just ends up in a pile on the kitchen counter or desk.  Then I start going through it a few days later.  With this mailbox I will be able to keep the mail neatly in one place, instead of having a messy pile on the counter.


I immediately sort out the junk mail (and there seems to be way to much of it!), but the bills and magazines end up in a pile.  I usually sort through this pile once a week to tend to bills.  Do you have a mail sorting system?  How do you keep the mail clutter down?  Let me know your secret weapon!



Easy Mexican Fideo Pasta Recipe

Easy Mexican Fideo Pasta Recipe
Easy Mexican Fideo Pasta Recipe

How’s your hump day going?  It’s a downhill slide after today.  I’m not in a happy place at my regular job, so I look forward to this downhill slide to the weekend.  Then I can get my salvaged, repurposing, crafting on! Which is what I enjoy.  I have a creative soul just screaming to get out.  But the day job pays the bills.  I need to figure out how to combine the creative with the bill paying.

When I’m not making and repurposing things I enjoy cooking.  I try to cook at least 6 evening meals at home each week so we aren’t eating out too much.  I don’t want to be spending money in the restaurants when I can eat for a lot less at home.

You probably know that here in Texas we love our Tex-Mex food!  Heck we even love authentic Mexican food.  We aren’t picky!  This past weekend Bracken made us The Pioneer Woman’s Green Chili Chicken.  But instead of green chili’s we used poblano peppers.  It was so good!  You have to try her recipe.  We needed a quick and easy side dish to go with it since he was cooking at 8:00 pm.  So I came up with this Mexican pasta recipe.


Here is what you will need to make 4 servings.

  • 1 package of Fideo Pasta Noodles
  • 1 can of Rotel
  • 1/2 – 1 Onion
  • 1 tbsp. of butter
  • Water or Chicken Broth (approx. 1 cup)


Step 1. Melt the butter over medium heat. Add your onions and fideo pasta noodles and fry them in the pan.  You will fry these until your onions look glassy (as my mother-in-law always says) and soft.


Step 2. Pour in the can of Rotel and about a cup of water or chicken broth.


Step 3. Cook on medium low heat until your noodles are done.  If the liquid evaporates too much before the fideo pasta noodles are done, then gradually add more liquid (water or chicken broth).

Step 4. Eat and enjoy


See how quick and easy this is.  It has a spicy flavor and is delicious.  I think it would be good if you added jalapeno, green chilis, or even ground meat for a one bowl meal.

What’s the quickest or easiest recipe that make for your family?

Killdeer Nest

Killdeer Nest
Killdeer Nest

How are you today?  We are doing great here in central Texas, and finally had a day of sunshine!  It’s been raining and raining and raining here.  So it was fantastic to spend some time outdoors in the mud soaking up the sunshine.

Do you remember my 2015 One Little Word?  I selected moment, and have been trying to focus on living in and enjoying the moment each day.  In line with that I have to share with you this little wonder of nature.  Had I not taken the time to notice what was happening each day as I drove down our driveway, I would have missed it!  Usually I miss things, but have been trying to focus more on what is happening around me.  Our driveway is about 1000-ft long, and a lot can happen from the road to the house.


Each afternoon when I came home, this bird was always running off the driveway.  I kept noticing it, and then one day G asked if I had seen it.  For once I could say yes!  He usually notices all this stuff and ends up pointing it out to me.  My mind is usually on a bazillion ideas and I don’t notice what’s going on.  Hence my OLW of moment.  He told me it was a  killdeer bird.  Here she is.


She was so hard to get a picture of.  It took me over a week to finally snap this one.  Once you start coming she drops a wing to act injured, and runs away.  This is her way to protect her babies.  G finally found her nest one day by watching where she started from for several days.  When he walked the driveway, here is what he found.


A rock nest and four gorgeous speckled eggs.  Revyn and I tried to find it but didn’t have any luck.  Probably because we were looking more in the grass where you would think a birds nest would be.  We finally had to ask G to show us.  It is in the middle of our driveway!  Not the place we figured a bird nest would be, but look how well camouflaged it is.  Genius!  There are lots of hawks out here, and even they didn’t find them.  In fact, so we wouldn’t run over them we had to mark where the nest was.  We used a yellow piece of ceramic to mark the spot.  We watched them each day, until finally we checked on them one evening and saw this.


They had hatched!  Aren’t they cute.


Within a day the mama had them moved somewhere else.  We are so glad we were able to find them and watch them until they hatched.  Anybody that came over got the “miss the bird nest” lecture, because we wanted to protect them the best we could.  We were so afraid they would get run over or stomped on by the cattle.  But they made it!  Nature is awesome!  I mean, who would think a birds nest would be built in the middle of gravel.


Repurposed Salvage Jewelry

Repurposed Salvage Jewelry
Repurposed Salvage Jewelry

It’s Flea Market Friday and I am so excited to share with you what I created!  First though I have to give you a little history so you can get my excitement.  Take time to click over to my post about The Chapel Market because this is where it all started.  This is where my love of a new type of jewelry started.  It was jewelry made by Lucy from Lucy’s Inspired.  She uses architectural salvage to make cuffs and necklaces.  I think I purchased 2 necklace there at Chapel Market, and then another one last year.  I LOVE THEM!  They are everything I love about salvage items.  Salvaged architectural pieces that have a soul and are now continuing their story as something new.

I have to admit….Lucy has inspired me!  When I went on the Thrifting field trip at SNAP, I found one particular piece that just screamed Lucy!  So for $1, I snatched it up.  You can see all that I bought that day here.  So my first flip was using this piece.


What do you think?  I’m in LOVE with it!  So here are the supplies that I started with.  The piece in the center of the star was the winning find at George’s Salvage from SNAP.  The crystal I picked up from my friends Diane and Roger at Blends.  Then I bought the chain at Michael’s and the crystal button at Hobby Lobby.  The only thing I didn’t buy was some jump rings that I already had.


The first thing I did was cut the shank off the button with pliers.  Once I had that part trimmed off smooth, I glued it to the rosette.  I let this sit overnight so the glue could completely dry.  Plus, I did it at 10:00 at night and I was ready to catch some shut eye.  So giving it some dry time was needed as much as I needed some sleep.


The next morning I started assembling the necklace.  I added the chain to the rosette using jump rings.  I want to give you a tip in case you have never used jump rings.  It is important that you twist it apart and not pull it out to get it apart. Then when you attach it to your item, you just twist it back together.  Here is a picture to show it apart.  The edges remain in line so that it goes back together properly.


The next step was to wire the crystal to the rosette.  I just used the wire that was already on the crystal.


That was it!  Now I have this amazing necklace with soul and a story to glam up an outfit.


So if you every run across some salvaged architectural pieces, think outside of the box and create something amazing. Let the story continue!

Linking Up @:

Concord Cottage 2 Bees in a Pod The Crowned Goat The Altered Past Karens Up on the Hill Art is Beauty

Between Naps On The Porch    A Stroll Thru Life     Coastal Charm   Snazzy Little Things     Snap Creativity


My Salvaged Treasures  Knick of Time   Beyond The Picket Fence  Songbird

Sowdering About  My Craftily Ever After  Cupcakes & Crowbars  Krafting Kreations  Busy Moms Helper

Just A Girl And Her Blog  Made to be a Momma  One Krieger Chick  Dolen Diaries

Pneumatic Addict  Carissa Miss  BDDesigns  Splendid Design

The Newlywed Pilgrimage  Cherished Bliss  Five Heart Home  Mama Dish

Someday Crafts Lamberts Lately

AKA Designs

DIY Vintage Chic

Funky Junk Interiors  Pieced Pastimes  Life on Lakeshore Drive

View From The Fridge  Pink When Interior Frugalista  My Crafty Spot  H2O Bungalow  An Allie Event

Vinyl Applique Glass Table

Vinyl Applique Glass Table
Vinyl Applique Glass Table

It has been raining non-stop here in TX for almost a week.  Water is standing everywhere, crops are looking yellow, and fields are flooded.  Farmers are beginning to wonder if their crops are going to make it.  With all this rain it is entirely to muddy to do anything outdoors, so I had to get crafty indoors.

At SNAP one of the vendors/sponsors was Expressions Vinyl, and they gave us a free roll of vinyl!  I enjoy doing vinyl projects, so I was super excited.  Free vinyl to create with!  Who wouldn’t jump on that.  In my opinion, their vinyl is of better quality than what I buy at my local craft store.

This roll of vinyl has been whispering to me to create something for a few weeks now.  A friend of mine had talked about wanting a small coffee table to put in front of a daybed she uses as a couch.  So this past weekend as I walked by this role of vinyl for fiftieth time, it dawned on me what I needed to do with it.  Are you ready for this, because it is awesome.  Here is what I did with the vinyl.

VinylTableLabelIsn’t this table so cute!  The best part of it is that is was so easy to make.  I had been hanging on to this 1/2′ thick piece of tempered glass I took out of broken table for some time now.  I knew that one day I would use it, and that day is now.  You could get this cut at your local glass shop to the size you need.  This one is 40″ x 16″, and was the perfect size for a small table.

I used my Cricut and Expressions Vinyl roll to cut out the shapes.  Here is the Cricut cartridge that I used.



I picked shapes that would work either backwards or forwards.  I didn’t use any letters because I don’t know if you can mirror the image to cut it out.  The shapes that you cut out will be stuck to the bottom of the glass so that the top is smooth.  Cut out your images and then place them in the pattern that you like.  The flowers that created the negative space in the heart were able to be used also.VinylTableSideways

I searched at several stores for table legs, and ended up with these garden globe stands from Hobby Lobby.  They were on sale for 50% off, so it was $30 for both of them.  Finding some that were the right height was a little bit of a challenge.


The glass is sturdy just sitting on top of these because it is so small.  Depending on the size of the glass you choose, you will need to pick out legs that will make it sturdy enough.

This table was the hardest thing I’ve tried to photograph since it is glass.  Plus we haven’t seen sunshine for days with all this rain, so I had to search for the window with the most natural light.  Just my luck it was a smaller window.  I’ve tried to photograph it for 3 days, but whenever I’ve been home it is raining.  Here is the glass lying on a blanket so that you can see all the detailed appliqués we used.


Vinyl is so versatile, so don’t be afraid to try a project with it.  If you don’t like the look, just peel it off and start again.


Linking Up @:

Concord Cottage    2 Bees in a Pod    The Crowned Goat    The Altered Past  Karens Up on the Hill    Art is Beauty

Between Naps On The Porch     A Stroll Thru Life    Coastal Charm     Snazzy Little Things       Snap Creativity


My Salvaged Treasures    Knick of Time   Beyond The Picket Fence    Songbird

Sowdering About  My Craftily Ever After  Cupcakes & Crowbars   Krafting Kreations   Busy Moms Helper

Just A Girl And Her Blog    Made to be a Momma     One Krieger Chick     Dolen Diaries

Pneumatic Addict  Carissa Miss    BDDesigns   Splendid Design

The Newlywed Pilgrimage  Cherished Bliss     Five Heart Home      Mama Dish

Someday Crafts      Lamberts Lately

AKA Designs

DIY Vintage Chic

Funky Junk Interiors     Pieced Pastimes     Life on Lakeshore Drive

View From The Fridge   Pink When   Interior Frugalista   My Crafty Spot   H2O Bungalow    An Allie Event


Glitter Mason Jar Vases

Glitter Mason Jar Vases
Glitter Mason Jar Vases

How are you today?  I’m a little tired after moving our son back from college over the weekend.  Moving is always a lot more work than you anticipate.  Either that or I always have an outlook that is way too positive.  Once you start packing up all those drawers you realize “wow, this is a lot of stuff”!  I under estimated the amount of totes I needed, so I had to make a few trips to Target.  But we managed to get it all packed up, moved back, and actually put up in storage.  Nothing around here EVER happens that fast.

On a brighter note, I have to show you what Revyn (my 16 year old daughter) made me for Mother’s Day.  She made these amazing flower vases for my spring decor, and I LOVE them!!!


I had one of these quart size mason jars sitting in my craft room from SNAP.  Laura Kelly hosted the breakfast one morning and talked about her peeps that she draws.  Her story was fantastic!  She had the mason jars on the table as center pieces with large felt flowers in them.  She invited us to take one and make something to enter in her take it craft it contest.


I took one and it has been sitting in the craft room until now.  Revyn decided to take it along with some used ones I had, and make me something for Mother’s Day that could also be entered into the contest!  I am hoping she wins one of the prizes!  She gathered up two other mason jars I had and her supplies.  She also used Mod Podge but forgot to include it in the picture.


Next she taped off the jars marking off where she wanted to glitter them.


She coated the portion she was glittering with Mod Podge, and then sprinkled glitter on it.


She let this dry, and then applied another coat of Mod Podge over the glitter.  With this coat you have to dab it on rather than brush it on.  This extra coat helps to keep the glitter from falling off all over your house.  Once this second coat was dry she added in the flowers that Bracken had bought.  Nothing like a brother-sister Mother’s Day gift.  These flowers are so pretty, and look great in these vases.


Mason jars are so versatile, and just fun!  What awesome things have you made from mason jars?  I know you have some great ideas to share, so leave me a link or a comment telling me what you have done with them.

Linking Up @:

Concord Cottage    2 Bees in a Pod    The Crowned Goat    The Altered Past

Cedar Hill Ranch    Between Naps On The Porch     A Stroll Thru Life

Coastal Charm

VMG206       Snap Creativity

My Salvaged Treasures    Knick of Time   Beyond The Picket Fence    Songbird

Sowdering About  My Craftily Ever After  Cupcakes & Crowbars   Krafting Kreations   Busy Moms Helper

Just A Girl And Her Blog    Made to be a Momma     One Krieger Chick     Dolen Diaries

Pneumatic Addict  Carissa Miss    BDDesigns   Splendid Design

Ella Claire Inspired      Yellow Bliss Road     City Farmhouse         Clean and Scentsible

The Newlywed Pilgrimage  Cherished Bliss     Five Heart Home      Mama Dish

Someday Crafts      Lamberts Lately

AKA Designs

DIY Vintage Chic

Funky Junk Interiors     Pieced Pastimes     Life on Lakeshore Drive

View From The Fridge   Pink When   Interior Frugalista   My Crafty Spot   H2O Bungalow    An Allie Event


Flea Market Friday 05.08.15

Flea Market Friday 05.08.15
Flea Market Friday 05.08.15

I’m finally back with another Flea Market Friday!  Who is ready for some more fun finds?  Who is ready to give me some ideas?  I’m not sure what I want to do with a few items, and I would love to hear what your thinking when you look at these items.

These were all picked up when I went on the thrifting field trip at SNAP.  Did you read about my awesome time at the SNAP conference in Utah?  Pause a moment and click on that link and check it out, because lots of fun stuff is there.  It talks about the thrifting field trip I went on with Brooke Ulrich from All Things Thrifty, and Mandi Gubler from Vintage Revivals. It was a total blast!  We visited George’s Salvage and Euro Treasures Antiques, and I ended up buying these great treasures to bring back to Texas.


I could have bought a lot more but two things held me back.  Money and suitcase space.  So I had to pick my favorites.

What do you think I should do with this mailbox?  I just fell for the old school look of it.  I’m thinking it might need to become a bright color.  What ideas do you have for it?


I bought this vintage Utah license plate because we are collecting them from all the states.  We aren’t sure what we going to do with them.  But hey, we have them!  Then this blue hook thing had me at the color.  I don’t know what it actually is, but I’ll use it somewhere as a hook.  Original, I know!  Then I have plans for a few of these hardware pieces.


Ok, so now get your creative juices flowing and give me some ideas!  I want to hear from you for any item.  What would you like to see me do with them?  Leave a comment below because I’m excited to read what you come up with.


Dewberry Picking

Dewberry Picking
Dewberry Picking

One of the great things about spring here in Texas, is seeing the dewberry vines beginning to bloom.  I hope you all know what dewberries are, but if you don’t that’s ok.  Dewberries look just like blackberries, but they grow low to the ground on thorny vines.  Their vines are more like a ground cover, but the berries are awesome!  Out here on our place we have LOTS of wild dewberry vines.  Some people just pull them up, but our opinion is that it’s free fruit from nature.


See, I told you they look just like blackberries.  We’ve been checking these vines pretty regular the past weeks.  It’s been like kids waiting for Christmas.  These berries are so juicy and delish that we look forward to them each year.  You can see when we picked the last bit of them over Memorial Day a few years ago.  While out checking them this past weekend we found several places that were just covered with the dark purple ripe berries.  So we headed back to the house to get our gloves and bucket so we could get to picking.


We picked and picked for about an hour.  I must confess that we felt it that night.  Our lower back and hami’s were a bit sore.  I guess we are just getting old.  Maybe we should have done some picking stretches before we started.  It was totally worth it because you only get a short window to pick these.  So when they are ripe you better get to picking.  We ended up picking 6-quarts of berries!


That’s a LOT of berries!  Plus there is still a bunch out there that we will be picking over the next few weeks.  I bet you are wondering what we are doing with all these berries.  After all, this is just the first picking.  First I picked out the grass and leaves that got picked with the berries, and then gave them a good washing.


It was then a unanimous vote by everyone in our household for a Dewberry Cobbler topped with ice cream.  So we used this cobbler recipe from The Pioneer Woman.DewberryCobblerIt is the easiest recipe and turns out fantastic every time. It is like a dump cobbler, and is so moist.


However, this only took 2 cups of berries and I still had several quarts left.  So I decided to freeze the rest.  I took them and put them on a few baking sheets spreading them out in a single layer.  Then I just put the pan in the freezer.  I left them in the freezer for 2-3 hours until each of the individual berries were frozen.  Once they were hard, I poured them into a gallon ziploc bag and put them in the freezer.


I will keep freezing them as we pick them so that we will have berries year around.  When nature gives you something this delicious and easy, you have to take advantage of it.  After all, it’s free!  And who doesn’t like free!