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Alfresco Dining in a Secret Garden – Alfresco Tablescape Blog Hop 2016

on August 1, 2016
Hi, Friends! Monday came so quickly – this summer is flying by. Our weekend was fabulous. It cooled down just enough for us to get outside for a bit of yard work and fun! But today, I am excited to be joining the lovely Chloe of Celebrate and Decorate for a sweet summer Alfresco Dining Tablescape Blog Hop! 
I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve gotten awfully behind on my gardening, especially in the backyard. The front yard received a little bit of love earlier in the summer, but the backyard has been woefully neglected. 

When things are looking overgrown as they are I tend not to want to spend much time out back, as it usually reminds me of all of the work there is to do! But I got to thinking lately that summer only lasts so long, and we should be taking advantage of the warm days and sultry evenings whenever we can. It’s all about perspective – rather than seeing my garden as overgrown, I’m choosing to see it as a secret garden! And there is no better place for a picnic for two than a secret garden.  
One doesn’t need a fancy patio set to enjoy a romantic summer picnic – All that’s needed is a quiet spot, a place to lean your elbows on, some comfy chairs, plates you love – unmatched or otherwise! – Good food and wine and great company! Candlelight doesn’t hurt either.  
I enjoy blurring the indoor/outdoor line by using my indoor furniture outdoors.

My favorite flower – hydrangeas. I was surprised to see that the blooms on our shrubs were a kaleidoscope of colors this year – pinks, blues, purples – with both large and compact clusters! 

So, do you have a Manicured or a “Secret” Garden? No matter what you have, I hope you’re able to spend some time in it before the summer’s end! 
Thanks so much for stopping and make sure you drop by to visit some of my talented blogging friends for alfresco dining tablescape inspiration galore!  
Pin for later: Alfresco Dining in a Secret Garden

Patriotic Table and Mini-Party

on June 27, 2016

Happy Monday, friends! Although it’s officially a week away, I got the bug this weekend to throw together a patriotic table and mini-party for the holiday!  Independence Day is one of my favorite holidays and a great reminder of how lucky I am to live in this country. There is nothing I love more than laying out on a picnic blanket, surrounded by my family and a throng of friends, gazing up at the fireworks, all of us united by our feelings of patriotism. The lights, the sounds, the songs.. gets me every time!
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Rustic Sweets Stand: March Create and Share Challenge with Walnut Hollow!

on March 30, 2016
Rustic Treat Stand using a Basswood Country Round

I’m here today, along with a fantastically talented group of bloggers, sharing my Rustic Treat Stand for March’s #CreateandShareChallenge!

This challenge is organized by Stephanie at Casa Watkins and sponsored by Walnut Hollow.

Walnut Hollow graciously gifted each participant with a wood-burning tool and product to re-style; I was so excited to receive a basswood country round. I’ve been eying up rounds for the past year scheming and planning all of the fun projects I could come with if I had one! I’d also never wood -burned before – unless camping with a campfire counts – and it seemed like something that would be fun to learn!  

This is a sponsored post. I received materials from Wallnut Hollow for the purpose of completing this project and giving my honest opinion. All opinions and views on the Walnut Hollow products I used are my own. This post may also contain affiliate links. Clicking on or purchasing a product from these links may provide me with a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting

I had wood round project inspiration galore of course – Wood round projects are so popular these days. After going through my various ideas, I kept coming back to the cake stands that are so popular for rustic styled weddings. I loved the look but wanted something different – I’ve been married enough times, thank you very much!

I decided on a raised stand, not for cake – for treats! I had a good idea of the look of the stand but still needed to plan out the burning patterns. I played around a bit, but it turned out I wasn’t super handy with the wood burner when it came to free-hand burning. I’m sure with a bit more practice I’d get the hang of it fairly quickly but in the interim…  What to do, what to do?! That was when I saw a tutorial offered by Walnut Hollow which included the use of these letter stamps and asked myself, “What? Where have these been all of my life?!” Armed with a new plan, off to the car I went!  

Walnut Hollow Hotstamps

I was so excited to find out that Walnut Hollow products are available at all of my favorite craft stores. After a quick trip to Michael’s,  I had in hand my supplies of a base, stacking wood balls and of course, the letter stamps and we were well on our way to creating a rustic style treat stand with a bit of a twist and personal style.

The letter stamps simply screw on to the end of the burner like any other burner tip. To change a letter, use a pair of plyers to both change and add a new letter. The burner heats the letter in about a minute and half. 

To burn the letter onto your project, simply apply very light pressure to the surface with the letter side down. Be sure to test your surface on either the back side of the wood or a test sample first before burning so you’ll know how long to apply pressure. For my round it was literally a touch down onto the wood with the burner. 

As if this project could get any better,  I got to play with a new power tool. A drill press! This tool was fantastic for creating consistently-sized holes through each piece. Although this could be done with any drill, it was SO easy with the drill press! I created a hole slightly larger than the 1/4″ threaded rod I  planned to secure all the pieces with. 

Then, I cut the rod to size, and secured with a nut at the base and a wooden finial on the top. There was a time when I might have missed the point of a drill-press, but those days have passed, and I’m much more power-tool mature now!

I love that it has the rustic feel I was inspired by, with the addition of the simplistic text, all on a pretty pedestal perfect for petite treats – but not penguins. #namethatmovie.  I can’t wait to give the treat stand a try and envision all of the yummy goodness it will hold in the future. A big thank you, Walnut Hollow, for sponsoring this post!

How about you, have you come up with any fun projects or ideas for a basswood round? I’d love to hear about them! 

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Before you go, please be sure to check out these other projects featuring the products of Walnut Hollow!

Pallet Tray Projects
Pocketful Of Posies:  DIY Military Coin Shadow Box
Vintage Romance Style: Easy DIY Laptop Stand
Shabby Grace Blog: Herb Garden Tray
Vintage Paint and More: DIY Vintage Pallet Tray
Domicile 37: Electronics Tray
Iris Nacole: Bohemian Tray
Medium Basswood Round
A Shade of Teal: DIY Clock
One Mile Home Style:  Golden Home Sweet Home Wall Art
Flourish & Knot: Monogrammed Cheese Board
Knock It Off Kim: Rustic Treat Stand
Farmhouse 40: Wood Open Sign
DIY Beautify:  Wood Slice Clock
Creatively Homespun:  DIY Children’s Step Stool
Chatfield Court:  DIY House Numbers
Large Round Clock
Monica Wants It: Gold Polka Dot Clock
The Twin Cedars: DIY Lazy Susan
Tastefully Frugal:  DIY Drum Clock
Uncookie Cutter: Tabletop Clock
The House Down The Lane:  Kid’s Art Cheese Tray
Refashionably Late: Stenciled Clock
My Life From Home: DIY Baseball Clock
Old House To New Home: DIY Stenciled Clock
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