Friday, December 13, 2013

Burlap Christmas Pillows

Happy December everyone, 

I hope you have all been staying in out of the bad weather… It's supposed to start snowing here pretty soon, and while most adults growl at the weather this time of the year, i secretly love it. I love the mornings that we are expecting to get some snow, I jump out of bed and rush to the front door. There is just something very magical about beautiful white powdery snow. Then a dose of reality hits and i realize that i still have to go to work in it… As it turns out, adults don't get snow days (unless you are a teacher, brilliant profession i must add)… And when you have a huge barn behind your house full of John Deere Tractors you have absolutely no excuse for not getting into work. 

Enough about the weather and onto some burlap pillows. I currently have a crazy obsession with burlap. I have done so many burlap projects lately that my house is starting to smell like burlap. I love the fabric, don't get me wrong, but i think that we can all agree that it doesn't have the most pleasant smell. So, at the request of my farmer I have tried to tone down the burlap smells. Then Christmas came and i discovered Red burlap… 

I decided to make three little square red pillows and write "Ho Ho Ho" on them. I had just the right spot where I would display them (for at least the next 2 weeks anyways)…

Always lay something in between your burlap, otherwise it will bleed through to the back of your pillow. I learned that the hard way

I used a stencil. You can free hand, I just wanted more of a uniform look since I had three different pillows and I was writing the same thing on each.

I have found that acrylic paint works the best for me… Especially in the white, it appears to hold its color better. I am not the neatest of painters and you can see…. Somewhere my dad is cringing at this photo… He is just the neatest painter. He has paint brushes he has used for 10 years that look brand new. I guess most every girl thinks their dad is perfect and i am no different. So dad, if you are reading this, i promise i wiped all of that paint off before closing the lid. 

Be generous with your paint, the burlap really soaks it up, but surprisingly, it doesn't bleed outside your stencil. 

These little foam brushes work the best on burlap… You don't really paint it in a stroke pattern, its more of a blot… 

After you are done, let them dry, fill with either a pillow form, or polyfill and finish stitching up. 

How great do those red burlap pillows look next to those beautiful green burlap pillows I made last summer. That's my favorite little area of my whole house and the first thing I see when I open my front door. 

I hope each of you is having a great Holiday Season… My farmer and I sure are in this Farmhouse. 

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Christmas Decorations

Please tell me it's not already December 5th. I love the Holiday season, and it is all going way too fast for me, what about you? I haven't gotten my Christmas cards ordered yet. Actually, we don't even have our photo taken for the Christmas cards… We have that planned for this weekend and that might or might not include a green tractor. Stay tuned for our Christmas card photo shoot. It will include a John Deere Tractor, Christmas wreathes, and my farmer who hates when i make him do these things but never ever once complains. Only reason # 1,538,789 of why i love him.

With a long to do list of things that still need to be done, inside Christmas Decorations is not one of them. My farmhouse is not a large one so a majority of my decorations are in my living room and some in the kitchen. Growing up in a large home my mom decorated everything from the kitchen to the bathrooms, and i  loved every bit of it. We each had our own little themed tree in our rooms that we got to decorate on our own. Something so small has stayed with me all these years. The thing that i love most about Christmas is tradition. The things that you do with you families each and every year.

That tradition for me starts with my Christmas tree. I must have a real one. Now, before you think that we went to a christmas tree farm and cut down a tree let me tell you that we got it at Lowe's. It's a long ways from an actual Christmas tree farm i know, but it is currently still a great tradition for me and my farmer. Someday when we add little farm kids to our mix we will make a new tradition that will most certainly involve cutting down our own tree, maybe even here on this very farm.

Each year as i decorate the tree i get excited thinking about my special ornaments. What they mean to me, who gave them to me, and whom i was thinking of when I picked that one out.

Since being with my farmer i have started a traditions of getting an "Annual Ornament" I think that will be fun to look back in 30 years of the 30 years of annual ornaments. I am currently waiting on my 2013 ornament to arrive in the mail.

Here is "Our First Christmas" ornament that i still need to put a picture in… I think i know just the perfect one too.

I cut off the tail to the left with my camera a little bit, but i received this one from my sister. It makes me smile every year. I know that everyone thinks that they have the best sister (rightfully so) but i actually do.

another new "tradition" is getting an ornament from each and every state that my farmer and i visit. This past fall before the craziness of Harvest we went to Dallas Texas for a Sunday Night Football game. It was a short trip, just two days and one night, but we sure did make some great memories on our first vacation together. I will think about that trip every time i look at this ornament.

i think that it's safe to say that my love of this particular ornament needs no explanation.

Last and certainly not least, i ordered this from Pottery Barn last year. It a beautiful glass peanut. My grandpa passed away the day after Christmas, almost five years ago. Some days it feels like forever and others it feels like just yesterday. I am sure everyone who has lost someone understands that. Anyways, peanuts were a special little thing between the two of us. So, this ornament that i got on sale for about $5.99 is by far my most prized possession.

This burlap tree skirt is trimmed in a great red tartan plaid. I got it last year from Ballard Designs and i would love to have it monogrammed one day. I think it's a great timeless piece that can travel through the many Christmas's with me and my farmer.

Some of my favorite ways to decorate for the Holidays are simply glass apothicary jars (which i am obsessed with in my farmhouse) filled with classic colored ornaments and fake snow. Such a simple look that's so colorful.

I like to have large ornaments and really small ones as well. The small ones help fill in the holes so there aren't a lot of gaps.

I have a total of four of these currently in my home. Red seems to be a popular color me, it's just such a great holiday color.

Ornaments and fake snow are certainly the most popular thing to decorate with, but i also tried something a little different this year. I took some reindeer moss, added a great little white feather tree and some glittery pinecones around it. It reminds me of a little fairy garden. 


My Aunt from Florida sent me this live ivy bunny last Spring. It sits right to the side of my kitchen sink and each holiday i add a different ribbon around the neck. For Christmas, it's none other than a red satin ribbon.

Wreaths on the windows hanging from red velvet ribbon. (Stay tuned for my outdoor decoration blog in a few days, i also have this on the outside of my house.)

I just added a little greenery around my doorway to the hall and also some light bulb ornaments that i picked up last year at Hobby Lobby (i love that place). Also, notice my cow picture…. It really is my favorite thing in this whole house.

My mom and my grandma have always has obsessions for Santa's. I remember them getting new ones each year when i was a kid. As we have gotten older my mom has passed that onto me and my sister as well. She gives us great Santa's every year.

We got this one a couple of years ago. It's an old fashioned Santa. Even the fuzzy white beard is discolored and looks old. Everything from the wrapping on the girts to the silver tree says old fashioned.

I would love to hear about some of your favorite Holiday traditions.
I hope you and your family are having a nice Holiday season and as always, thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Thanksgiving Desserts

Hi everyone-

I hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving. I am spending the day taking down my fall decorations and getting Christmas stuff out. It's a nice day outside so after i finish up this post about my yummy deserts i am going to get a jump start on some of my outdoor decorations.

First things first, check out these Thanksgiving Deserts. I apologize for the blurry pictures, i have no idea what was going on with my camera.

I baked a cranberry apple cobbler to take to my my grandma's thanksgiving. The best part about it was i started cutting up my apples and doing my filling on Tuesday night. I think it works best that way because it gives the apples time to soften.

So Thanksgiving morning i got up early, put my filling into an 8x8 baking dish, grabbed my favorite leaf cookie cutter and a roll of pie dough. Yes, i used store bought pie dough. It's wonderful and easy, i just couldn't help myself.

I baked the filling for 30 minutes on 350º-covered with foil, then added my leaves in a staggered pattern, brushed them with an egg and sprinkled with sugar. Then baked for an additional 30 minutes covered in foil.

It's a wonderful desert and i plan on making it again for a couple of Christmas parties that i am attending this year. See the recipe below, i originally got it from Everyday Occasions, another great blog…check it out.

Leaf Topped Apple and Cranberry Cobbler


10 apples cored and peeled

3/4 cup of  dried or fresh cranberries
2 teaspoons of orange zest 
4 tablespoons of orange juice
1/2 cup of sugar 
1.2 cup of flour 
1 teaspoons of cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg

My next recipe if a pecan pie. Just a classic that i found in my Southern Living magazine. Again, store bought pie dough. One of these days i will do one from scratch-i promise, but for now, this one is really great.

I also added some fall pie crust cutouts to the pie-it's so very simple and really makes it much more festive. I got them from William Sonoma and plan on getting some Christmas ones as well. 

I have seen them added to pies and then baked, but in this case i just popped them in the oven on 350º after my pie was done.. They baked for about 7-10 minutes then i decorated my pie with them. 

Back to my pecan pie…. Again… store bought pie dough… 

Pecan Pie Recipe:

1 1/2 sticks of butter
1/3 cup of Corn Syrup (light or dark, i used dark-it gives a richer taste)
1 cup of packed brown sugar
1/3 cup of heavy cream
2 cups of pecans

Preheat the oven to 350º and assemble your pie dough in your pie plate. 

For the pie filling combine the butter, corn syrup, and brown sugar in a saucepan, heat on low until the butter has completely melted. Remove from heat then add the heavy cream and pecans.  

Add the filling to your pie plate and bake for 20 minutes. Oven temps vary quite a bit so keep a close eye on it after 15 minutes of baking. 

Let it cool and then decorate your pie with cut-outs as shown above. As mentioned earlier i am going to get some Christmas ones and add them to everything this holiday season. I can already see Christmas morning quiches and great brie cheeses covered in pastry dough adorned with holiday cutouts.

I also added a little gobble banner that i made with my cricket machine as i previously mentioned in my Thanksgiving Goodies post. 

One more thing that i did this year and is a must for a topping of this pecan pie is fresh whipping cream. It was a last minute thought as i had some left over from the pecan pie recipe. 

I simply added the rest of the heavy cream that i had in my container left over from the pecan pie, added a couple of large scoops of sugar then whipped them in my mixer. Preferably with a whisk attachment but i couldn't locate mine. 

Once the cream was at a thick consistency i added it to a bowl, and tied my cross grain stamped ribbon and a foil embossed sticker that i purchased from William Sonoma. 

It took no effort at all, and made a lovely addition to the desert table. 

I hope you try out these recipes for the upcoming Holiday Season. They have already certainly made it to my recipe box.

Stay tuned in the next few days for some Christmas decoration tips and inspiration-both indoors and outdoors. My farmer is still working in the field so it appears that i am on my own for outdoor stuff. 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Thanksgiving Crafts

Thanksgiving is by far my very favorite Holiday. It's just the beginning of the Holiday season, but before all of the hustle and bustle of the month of December. Plus-Food, Family and a little Football (My 3 favorite things)…

With both of our families living close together we get the joy of spending time with each of them on the holiday's. I have made a few items to bring to my hostesses on Thanksgiving. 

See my "Gobble Gobble" banner below. I hung it on the trim between the kitchen and the living room just for picture purposes, but i plan on taking it to one of our Thanksgiving dinners-and i think i know just the perfect place for it. 

I made this sign using a Cricket machine. My mom bought it last year and i must admit when she told me about it, my first thought was "Really, Mom you can just buy that stuff for pretty cheap. Is it going to be worth the price you paid for it?" Well, a year later i can absolutely tell you that it's worth it. If you don't already have one, you must put it on your Christmas list. Between me, my sister and my sister in law, we have kept the cricket machine busy. You can do just about anything with them. I am sure most every blog entry of mine will feature a little cricket creation. 

My printer is out of color ink-and i didn't feel like running out to get some. I love these free printable's that i found from one of my favorite blogs, Everyday Cheer, check them out.. As much as i love how these turned out, i still wish that i had them in color. Maybe next time...

I glued them to some card stock strips of colored paper and taped them around a mason jar to use for glasses.

I also used the same printable design tied together with some crossgrain ribbon that i stamped it with my own custom stamp "The Lichte's" and just tied it around my mason jar glass.

I have been excited to use this stamp since it came in the mail. I got it from one of my favorite blogs, Everyday Occasions The blog now has it's own store, you must check it out. I have some ideas for a great customized gift using this stamp and i ordered it in Green specifically for the upcoming holiday season. 

I also added a printable to a flower arrangement that i picked up from a local flower shop. I plan on giving this as a gift to my Thanksgiving hostess. I think it will be a nice addition to a table full of laughter, food and loved ones. 

I hope that this gives you some last minute inspiration for your Thanksgiving, also-it just might let someone know that you are thankful for them.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Welcome to my Farmhouse

Welcome to my blog. It's just a little peak inside my life….. It's not always perfect, but it's exactly where i want it to be....On this farm, with my farmer.

I grew up in a very small town in Central Missouri. My family has always been in agriculture, so now i feel it's only natural that i have ended up on a farm. For me i am the most comfortable with myself when i am outside working in my garden, mowing the yard, or planting flowers. I credit my mother for that, when we were kids she made us go outside to play. In fact, we couldn't come inside until it was getting dark. The 10 year old me might have been slightly annoyed by that, but the 29 year old me appreciates that now. So mom, if you are reading this (and i am certain you will be my first reader) thanks for making me…. well… me…

I have one sister and two brothers. Between them i have been blessed with 2 beautiful nieces and three (soon to be four) beautiful nephews. I am many things in this world, a daughter, sister, and friend to name a few, but i can promise you one thing, my favorite role is an Aunt. Those kids are the best part of me and by far the most important thing that i do. They are cute and fun and i promise they will be featured on this blog ALOT!!! Someday i will be blessed with my own farm kids, but in the meantime they are giving me pretty great practice.

Thanks for taking time out of your day to visit my blog and read about me.
The holidays are the perfect time to be creative so be sure to keep in touch with me for some holiday inspiration.
Have a great weekend everyone, stay warm, it's definitely starting to feel like winter here.

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