December 30, 2009

Getting Organized

Hello Friends~ ~
I love working in my small kitchen. Short steps from here to there but not enough storage. Does anyone really have enough storage in their kitchen. How about you? Does it seem that the more space we have the more "things" we purchase to fill it?

I have decided to expand my kitchen storage space to the diningroom. The china cabinet was full of lovely dishes that I really didn't use often. I claimed that space for dishes that I use almost daily. I've still got the red transfer ware in the kitchen on the plate rack but this white set is also used often. I got it at Ollie's a few months ago and I just love it. Do you have an Ollie's near you? It's one of my favorite discount places to shop.
The white set is Gibson I think, but I can't remember the name of the pattern. It's simple and was less than $15 for a set of 4 place settings! Of course you know I had to get 3 sets so I would have 12 settings.
The Ball jar in the back holds my black handled steak knives which I just love.

The second shelf from the bottom holds the crystal stems and tumblers that get used often too and are so pretty to look at. Above is a crystal dish with an assortment of tea bags. This way I don't have to get individual tea boxes out each evening.
The pretty little plates under the tea bags are often used for dessert.

I know that so many of you have tassles on your cabinet handles and lamp pulls. I found these keys on a red ribbon and decorate my door with them.

This little table sits at one end of the diningroom and holds a white crock with the silverware we use everyday. If we have more than 6 people we have to use the stainless from the kitchen basket. Remember when I purchased it a few weeks ago on a weekend adventure. (the post is a few down) What a dirty mess it was and look how it sparkles now. I got a polish called "Nevr-Dull. It's wadding dipped in a polish. It comes in a little blue can and worked really well without the mess of a liquid.

This is the kitchen counter right by the door to the diningroom. We don't have an eat in kitchen so as we set the table for meals the stainless is right by the doorway and easy to grab. I know most folks put their stainless in a drawer but for me it's just to much bother to open and close the drawer all day long so this little organizing basket works great for us.
And of course my Young Living Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils by the basket in the kitchen. I have them stashed all over the house. I add a few drops of these to bottles of filtered water and we drink them all day long. They are great to boost the immune system and they flavor the water nicely. Around here we drink mostly water, no sodas or juice.
I just noticed the little plactic bracelet by the diningroom chair. See it, it's a green one? My cats love playing with those bracelets better than a $5 cat toy.

My four white diningroom chairs got a holiday decoration this year and I wanted to share it with you. It's almost time to take the decorations down for the season. My Mother always took her tree down and all the decorations on New Years Day. How about you, when will you put your tree away? I'm still undecided. Remember last year I had my tree up and decorated for Easter! That was a first. Let's see if I can hang in there till at least Valentines Day.

I love the way these old bottles I've been emblishing sparkle in the candlelight.
It feels so good to begin organizing the house. If you have any hints that would like to share about organizing your home please leave a comment. I appreciate your taking the time to do so. I would love to hear your thoughts.
~ ~Ahrisha~ ~

December 28, 2009

An Amazing Christmas Story

Happy Holidays My Friends~ ~

I have an amazing story to share with you. The mirror above has one of my favorite sayings on it. Glitter letters were pasted across the top to remind me every day when I look in the mirror to "Delight In The Day". I also believe in Dreaming Big. If you are a regular friend visiting here you know how much I love glitter. So much for the stars. . .
. . .and the trees on with the story.

Do you see the santa picture on the wall behind the tree? It was embroidered by a dear friend years ago as a gift for me. Iwona was a lovely girl who came here from Poland with a friend of mine. She visited here many months and we spent time together and we enjoyed each others company so much. We talked and talked and laughed and cooked together. Then she went back home and the relationship ended between Iwona and my friend and we lost contact. That was 14 years ago.

While she was visiting here she asked my Mother to teach her how to do embroidery and she did this picture for me. She was an excellent student and learned very well. Her stitching is beautiful. Every year when I put this picture up on the wall I think of Iwona. I had tried to contact her a few times over the years with no luck. I come to find out that she has been trying to contact me also.

On Christmas morning I checked my emails and found a note from her asking politely if I was the person she was searching for. For many years she sent emails out looking for me and if I was not that person she was sorry for bothering me. She would continue to try to find me. What Joy when I saw it was from her and that she was well and happy and married with a family!

I decorated this basket for the holidays and it is sitting in a corner of the dining room.
It seems appropriate to close this post with Believe~ ~and all good things will come to you.
I am Joyously Happy and hope that each of you has a miracle come to you this season.
Love & Blessings~ ~Ahrisha~ ~

December 14, 2009

A Little Christmas Tour

Happy Holidays Friends~ ~ ~
Come on in for a visit and share in the Joy of the season!

This is what happens when your in a hurry. Please tilt your head a little to the left to read Mom's Amazing Fruitcake recipe. None who have tried this cake have disliked it. It has very little fruit and lots of tasty cake so I am sharing the recipe with all of you. It's the easiest cake to make you won't believe it. I printed the recipe on paper and hung it from the stair railing for all to see as they enter through the front door. I'll do another post later so that you can copy and paste the recipe to your computer. How about for Foodie Friday, OK Gollum?

At the top of the steps is one of my china cabinets.
I love the vintage picture of the boy & girl on the swing.

This is new this year and I got it at
Fairy Freckles Studios. It would make a great centerpiece for a table also.
They have the greatest vintage plaques another is on the dining room buffet.

Ta Da, This is my thin white tree that was a gift from my friend Joy and I just love it. It fits so nicely in the corner of our small livingroom.

Love this picture of the tree top. My friend walked in the room and said "It looks like your tree exploded!" Kinda cool. I have had the little gold stars on the sticks for at least 20 years. The big silver ones are new.

These are some of my favorite ornaments.

Can you believe I got them at WalMart?

Sweet little sparkly tree. In my mind you can never have enough Glitter!!

The above picture is of the bottom of the tree. I really loaded it up with big elements to make it look wider. The tree is sort of straight up and down. I used a piece of purple velvet for a tree skirt.

If you look left from the tree the sofa is in front of the big window with it's lace curtains.
I have decorated the sofa table with greens and flowers and my Dept. 54 angels.
Day time shot on a rainy day.

Night time shot with the sparkly lights.

Do any of you collect Dept. 54? These angels have to be at least 25 years old.
They are paper mache.
I have set them on angel hair. It just seemed right.

Opps again. Too much in a hurry. Between the sofa and the tree.

Good thing this is the last shot. The buffet in the diningroom with another print from
Fairy Freckly Studios. Don't you just love it with the bottles I made? I love how it sparkles and shines with all the silver. I'm planning to sell these bottles and more after the holidays.
Do you think there would be much interest?
I am linking to Cindy's Show & Tell to share my Christmas tree.
Please stop by and visit everyone who is participating in Show & Tell.
I'll bet you'll see lots of Christmas decorations this week.
It so much fun to see what everyone is up to.
You can find them all at Cindy's Romantic Home.
Thanks for visiting and for taking the tour. I appreciate all of you and cherish the friendships I have made in the blogging community. Please stop by again and don't forget to leave a little message I really love hearing from you.~ ~Ahrisha~ ~

December 12, 2009

Sweet Little Sparkly Tree

Greetings Friends~ ~ ~

I love Christmas and decorating the house and baking cookies and wrapping gifts, well you get the idea. I'm sure that many of you are right there with me. I would like to share our little tree in the sun room with you today. It's actually about 4.5 feet tall so it's not really tiny. We also have a bigger tree in the living room that I'll share later.

You can find many different "words" to hang around your house. Wish, hope, believe, joy to name a few. Some in wood and some in plastic. I wanted to do a tree with the word SING. Seems appropriate to me for the holidays as I have music on most of the time. I covered plastic letters with music using Mod Podge and I'm thrilled at the way they look.

I hung them diagonally on the tree as well as a string of silver glitter stars and a gold glitter rope.

The rope ends by the G and just swirls around behind it by a sweet little nest.

I continued the swirl effect with the glass balls on top of the tree.
I used 4 colors teal, green, purple and blue.

This picture above was taken with a flash. The pictures at the beginning were taken without flash to get that sparkly look with the lights. I've been doing a little experimenting with my camera trying to get better shots.

This above picture is also with a flash but you can see the glass ball swirly cascade on top of the tree better here.

Before the sun went down. Late afternoon sun. The tree sits on my
project table in the corner of the sun room.
I set it toward the back so that I can still work at the table
and wrapped a lace tablecloth around the base.

This is a great shot of the top. I was really at a loss as to what I was going to do with this tree. I wanted to go with decorations I already had. The only new things on the tree are the SING. I strung the glass balls on a long piece of florist wire. I actually used two pieces. The first wire has 11 balls strung on it the one on the tippy top has 5 balls. I just bent the ends of the wire over and wrapped it around a tree branch at each end. Then released the tension and let the balls drape over the branches. Reminds me of a waterfall. Than I stuck 2 glittery gold branches into the top. More branches would be better but I only had two.
Simple but effective. Try it and let me know how you like it.

Can you see the nest among the branches?

I had so much fun with this and I am excited to see all of your trees.
Please share.
~ ~Ahrisha~ ~

December 2, 2009

Can I Have Your Recipe?

That's what everyone says when they taste my Apple Pie. I believe the apples you choose make or break the pie. What do you think?
I always use a sweet apple and a tart apple and mix them for my pies.

For these 4 pies I used Winesap and Ginger Gold mixed. Winesap is my all time favorite cooking apple. It makes an awesome apple dumpling too. Can you get Winesap in your area?

Sometimes I will use Winesap and Golden Delicious and that's a great combo too. For many years I used a mixture of Golden Delicious and Johnathan. Please share your favorite pie apple.

Do you have one if these gizmo's? It's the best when your making pies. It peels and slices and cores all at the same time.

Another trick I like to do is to really pile the apples up in the crust. Go ahead and pile them high because they shrink a lot when you bake them. I actually push them down and then pile more on till I think I can't get any more apples in the dish. Then I pat on the crumbs. We love crumb topping at our house. How about you?

Oh, and be sure to line your oven with foil because my pies always bake out and make a mess in the oven.

Here they are just after I pulled them out of the oven. Can you smell the sweet apples?

This crust recipe is always so flaky and delish, It's Martha's. I mix the crust up first in the Cuisinart. Divide it into 2 pieces and flatten it out, wrap in plastic wrap and chill while I make the Streusel Topping and do the apples.
You don't have to wash the bowl out before you mix the topping.
Marthas Pate Brisee
5 C. Flour
2 tsp. Salt
2 tsp. Sugar
1 C. Crisco
2 sticks Butter-Chilled
3/4 - 1 C. Ice Water
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Streusel Topping
Enough for 2 pies
1/2 C. Brown Sugar packed
1/2 C. Granulated Sugar
1 1/4 C. Flour
1 stick butter Cold
pulse all in processor till crumbly.
For the apples slice them as thinly as you can. We don't like them chopped in chunks.
I use 10 good sized apples for 1 Deep Dish pie shell.
To the 10 apples add:
scant 1/4 cup EACH Gran. Sugar & Brown Sugar
3 1/2 T. Flour
1/2 tsp. EACH Cinnamon & Nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ginger
Toss it all together and pile into a 9 or 10" Deep dish shell.
Pat the topping on top and dot with butter.
Bake 450* for 10 minutes then reduce heat to 350* till golden brown.
If I'm baking 2 pies, which I always do it usually takes just over 1 hour.

Thanks for stopping by and let me know how your pies turn out.
For more great recipes please stop by at Michael Lee's house
~ ~Ahrisha~ ~