How to Make an Oyster Shell Christmas Tree

One thing I enjoy about fall and cooler weather is the oyster season. It runs roughly from November to April and is the lawful time of year to harvest oysters. Oyster roasts are common here and we try to have one or two every winter with a least a bushel of just harvested oysters.

Corner to Corner Crochet Shawl with Scalloped Edge

I made this shawl for my 91-year-old mother and I love the way it turned out. I admit the pattern was a little hard to understand at first, but once I caught on it went pretty easy. Here are the links to the instructions I used.

Instructions here
YouTube video here
Written pattern here

I used almost all of four skeins of Caron Simply Soft Yarn in Victorian Rose, a 6 mm crochet hook, and a darning needle for loose ends.

3-Ingredient Peanut Butter & Pumpkin Homemade Dog Treats

If you read my blog posts about dog treats then you know how I feel about most commercial ones. I hate them. I think they are unhealthy, expensive, and sometimes dangerous. That said, I know how much most of us love to give our dogs occasional treats and also how much we don't want to make them from scratch.

Why You Should Wrap Your Paint Brush in Plastic (Problem Solved Mini-Post)

A Problem Solved Mini-Post

I do a lot of home painting projects, some large and some small. I'm talking walls, ceilings, baseboards, furniture, and touchups. I don't mind painting so much, but I do hate cleaning paint brushes and rollers. So it is a real pain when I need to stop painting for short periods and have to wash the brush each time. I invest in good paint brushes so I don't want to ruin them by letting them dry out.

Cinnamon Pecan Monkey Bread

Photo property of

Who can resist ooey gooey cinnamon, butter, and sugar anything? Just don't start counting calories on this one please. My husband loves my homemade cinnamon buns but lets face it, that takes all day. While I won't say anything else comes even close to the taste of homemade cinnamon buns, this recipe is really good and you can make the whole thing in less than an hour including the baking time. In fact, this pull-apart bread is so irresistible, everyone will be clamoring for seconds.

How To Make An Outdated Fireplace Insert Look Great With High Heat Paint

Do you remember when these things were in front of almost every fireplace? I had been wanting to replace mine for years but every time I find something I liked it was just too expensive. Finally, I decided I just had to do something. I mean it couldn't turn out any worse, right?

Organize & Store Markers Using Repurposed Tin Cans

I am loving my new craft room. It's not quite finished but it's getting there. Finding new and creative ways to organize it has been a lot of fun. One example is this cute way to store my markers.

Fresh Fruit Salad for Memorial Day (with Watermelon, Blueberries, and Feta)

This salad is so simple and refreshing. The red and blue fruits with white feta cheese make it perfect for Memorial Day or Fourth of July celebrations. Make it the night before if you like, just don't add the dressing until the last minute!

Clumpy Chunky Basic Granola Recipe

I don't know about you but I like my granola on the chunky side. Not that I don't savor all those little loose pieces but I love the clumps of crunchy oats, nuts, and fruit.

Fresh Strawberry Mojito Cocktail

This years strawberry crop seems to be especially sweet and tasty. Customers at local farms can pick their own or buy them all ready picked. What a treat to get fresh from the field strawberries!

DIY Clothespin Command™ Hook (Problem Solved aka Hack)

A problem solved mini-post.

I guess I could call this a clothespin hack but I've begun to dislike the term "hack" and so I've decided to just call this a "problem solved" post. You see I had this problem, I had a calendar that I hung over an ugly fuse box, but the top corners of the calendar kept curling and falling forward. I wanted to keep the calendar there, it was a convenient spot and it helped hid the fuse box.

DIY Bird Feeder from Plastic Container

We purchased some Stauffer's Animal Crackers from Walmart that came in this plastic container. It looks like a cute bear and I just couldn't bring myself to put it in the recycle bin. Surely I could make this into something useful.

DIY Painted Styrofoam Buoy Wreath

Coastal and nautical decor are so popular right now. This simple to make wreath would look nice in coastal colors like turquoise, blues, and tans. Or, get a nautical look with red, navy, and white. Really any color would be great and you would still get that coastal look because it's well...buoys. I chose pastels for this wreath because it was getting close to Easter. I love the way it turned out.

Make Your Own Washable Dog Pee Pads (or puppy training pads)

As our pets age they may begin to have less bladder control or even become incontinent. Our 14 year old beagle, Barclay, started giving us very little notice when he needed to go outside. All too often he would not be able to hold it long enough. We began putting down training pads and he would use them. Unfortunately the pads, even the X-Large ones, were not big enough for him to get "centered" on and he usually ended up going on the edge of the pad. Yuck.  Eventually Barclay even began having trouble getting up and down the three steps to our backyard. I had to come up with a solution.

Repainting My Vintage Hamilton Beach Stand Mixer

My grandmother was a great cook. She made the best Chicken and Pastry and her Potato Rolls were to die for. She kept her trusty mixer on one of those cabinet shelves that lift up and out, so it would always be handy. Needless to say I was thrilled when my Mom asked me a few years ago if I wanted it!