Sunday, December 29, 2013

French Trugs and Wood Totes

A while back when a friend and I were shopping up in Florence at an antique mall I spotted this tote on display way up on top of a shelf:

I couldn't get down fast enough! Once I had it in my hands I turned it 36o degrees looking for a price tag, without any luck.  I asked the clerk about a price and he said he'd call the seller.  A few minutes later he found me with the {bad} news: "NFS". Yes, the dreaded "not for sale".  Why do sellers taunt us so?  Fast forward to a week before Christmas when I miraculously was able to get Mark to that store to take a look!  I told him "This!  This is what I want!"

Today he cut up some wood and nailed together a rustic version of that tote.  Here's our version make with wood from our old siding:


While he was cutting up that I made another version of a trug. I used some scrap wood; I save everything! The round handle was made from a piece of driftwood we found at Whiskey Run Beach about a year ago!

I'll probably white wash or paint both of these; white, it's my signature color, I guess!

I've been looking up wood totes, tool boxes, trugs, French market trugs, French garden trug and more.  Don't you just love how "French trug" sounds so romantically nostalgic?  I do!

Here's what Google said:
noun: trug; plural noun: trugs; noun: trug basket; plural noun: trug baskets
  1. 1.
    a shallow oblong basket made of strips of wood, traditionally used for carrying garden flowers and produce
Just for fun do a google/online search of "French Market Trug" or something like that, you'll love what you find!
Happy New Year and many blessings to you in 2014,


















  1. 1.
    ying garden flowers and produce.


             Happy New Year and many blessings,

Sunday, December 22, 2013


Merry Christmas!

We've been busy as everyone else, but realized GASP we didn't have a tree up and it's just days to Christmas.  I blame it on the fact that Thanksgiving this year practically fell in December!  So after a fun weekend away we took a little hike around our property and found the perfect tree.  It was so small we decided to put it in a watering can!  I filled the can with rocks to steady it, then just poured the water for the tree right in the watering can. 

NOEL!   (The sign is a pallet style sign; I painted a bunch of these and "Be Merry" for gifts this year.)

Christmas blessings to you all!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Oatmeal Apple Craisin Cookies= I'm thankful for the abundance of apples!

For me, November is Thanksgiving Month!  All month long I journal the things I notice that I'm grateful for each day.  There's no order of importance; I just write out what comes to mind for me that day.  Yah, I know I don't look so good being thankful for cookies, and such which many others are being very serious writing about how they are thankful for family, etc.  Hold tight, I always get to the important things too!

Today I'm thankful for the abundance of apples where we live.  This is what will be in my journal today!

This is my third year using the Gratitude Journal here.  I just print it out (on card stock) then use a loose leaf metal ring to hold it together.  I write out my daily notes, sometimes printing them out. I print out photos I use, recipes and more.  It becomes a sort of scrapbook journal by the end of the month.  I cherish my past years' journals and wish I had done this for a long time prior.

Our apple tree today:

Today when I ran on my lunch hour I notice our McIntosh apple tree was ready to begin picking.  It's a very late apple, but if you pick too soon all the apple is too tart.  I picked a bucket of apples after the run then came in and made a quick batch of Oatmeal Apple Cranberry Cookies.  I'll be bringing them to our Ladies Bible Study tonight, after leaving a plate out for My Mark!

Here's the recipe:
 3/4 cup butter (use real butter!)
3/4 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark)
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
3 cups oatmeal (uncooked)
1 cup diced apples (with no skin)
1/2 cup dried craisins

Mix sugars and butter; add eggs and vanilla; add flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and oatmeal; then stir in apples and craisins.

Drop by spoonfuls (I use the Medium sized Pampered Chief scoop, which is about 2 Tblspn) onto a Silplat matt (or greased cookie sheet, or parchment paper) and bake for 10 minutes (in preheated 350 degree oven). Watch the cookies, though, so not too cooked and not too doughy--every oven is different!

Cool and eat 3 to be happy today.

Blessing, Heidi

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Have yourself a MERRY little Christmas

Yes, I'm going to mention Christmas now!  It is November, so it's safe, right?

I continue to paint signs for my Etsy shop.  Every once in a while I create a new and different sign, which is what this Christmas sign is (for me, at least!).

It's available for purchase from my Etsy shop here. 

My custom family name signs continue to be one of my top sellers for a gift (Christmas, wedding, anniversary and birthday).

I also offer a custom name sign for a Christmas sign here.

Please note, if you are planning to order one of my signs for a Christmas gift it would be so very helpful for me if you order early!  At some point I will need to look at the calendar and choose a deadline date for sign orders to be placed to arrive by Christmas.  (Most likely the first week in December.)


Monday, October 7, 2013

Lea's Apple Prayer Bread Recipe

  (Ceramic bowl made by Jessica in 2002- high school pottery class!)

 I finally found the Apple Prayer Bread recipe. I had hoped to find it on Leas blog or saved on one of my computers, that way I could give you the link or copy and paste. But I only found my original hard copy. So I just took a photo of it for you. (Someday I will retype it, but it's just so charming directly from Lea, a dear friend at the blog, "Shabby Olde Potting Shed".)

She lines her loaf pans with cinnamon sugar before pouring the batter in them.  This makes a sweet and tasty crust!

I'm posting this via my iPhone and I have a lot to learn on posting this way. to insert links. I'll just come back on my big girl computer to do that.  {{edited 10/8/13--completed!}}

On Saturday after I uploaded the .2 iPhone iOS (I had already done ios7) my phone crashed and I lost everything. Note to self- use the iCloud! I rebuilt everything except my contacts. So if you get a chance and know me... Please send me your contact information! (Or there will be no more random surprises from me! Lol)  
{{edit note 10/8/13--"Billy" at Apple was fantastic to help me recover my contacts, some photos and more.  Fabulous phone help! Also, the AT&T folks recovered my voice message system, too!   Can you say now I use iCloud??!!!}}

Have a blessed day and remember:
   Everyday Counts!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

FALL-ing Deeper

I'm falling completely into the season!
             Here's just a few of the reasons....
-- Love the crispy nights when we can burn wood in our woodstove; I also enjoy the simple process of cutting and splitting firewood

--Love seeing all the apple trees all around loaded with abundant fruit
         (loved reading someone in the paper offering apples for anyone that wants to come pick)

--Love our McIntosh apple tree, also loaded

--Love decorating our porch and our entryway with signs, pumpkins, sunflowers and more
(notice the wooden slate wall hanging...we found it last year on the beach after a storm!  I let it dry out for's perfect for the entry way)

--Love making Lea's "Apple Prayer Bread"  (this is my FAVORITE bread recipe)
                      will add when I find it!

--Love that the new season of my favorite show has begun (Amazing Race--though I missed the very first show because of a big storm we had which knocked out our power for two nights in a row, about 8 hours each night)...and did you know? I've always wanted to be a contestant on Amazing Race!

--Love that fall is salmon season and I caught one already (in our bay from our boat)

--Love that we live less than 5 minutes from the slough where I can fish from the bank for salmon (one of my goals this year is to catch one from the bank--not happening...yet!)

--Love that I don't feel guilty for sitting on the couch after dinner (as opposed to summer nights were we tend to stay outside until the sun sets, which is close to 10 PM on the longest days here)...or just make crafts, like this "Booo" pillow I made for Jessica (our daughter) was inspired by the Pottery Barn "Booo" pillow

--Love shopping trips with the girls...JFF  (just for fun)

--Love that I can get serious about crafting Christmas gifts now; in fact, I'd better get with it as Christmas is now 82 days from now!   WHAT IS IT NOW?  CHECK YOURSELF!

--Love visits from the grandchildren, including the special weekend they stayed with us!

Goodness gracious....there was so much more I'd love to post, but have run out of time!
Please enjoy each and every day, love your family and be kind!
Blessings, Heidi

Monday, September 30, 2013

FALL Banner

It's been difficult for me to keep up with all the things the internet has to offer theses day.  As creative artist, back in the day we all were so excited to have blogs, with other social media not really set up for creative interchanges.  Fast forward to today, when we have a gazillion blogs (wonderful blogs), Pinterest, Instagram, easily working Facebook, and more.  What's a girl to do? Spread herself thin or pick one and camp there?  Right, I think I spread myself as thin as the peanut butter on a PBJ sandwich (Mark always says I spread it too thin!) But it all works out in the end, I enjoy nibbles of all good things. 

Today I'll show a few photos of a "FALL" banner I made and then shared with our Ladies group at the church. I needed a fairly easy and fast project.  The minute I saw Nikki Grandy's FALL banner on Instagram I knew the banner would be a perfect project. (Do take some time to check out her blog; I *love* her style!

  {{This is her Instagram photo above.I can't figure out how link the Instagram photo.}}

I quickly made a mini FALL banner. 

It was cute and all, but just didn't give the *punch* that Nikki's gave.  So what was going to be a quick small project began to take on some time as I painted larger sized triangles.

I used thick cardboard, cutting the triangles with a utility knife.  I only painted one coat of chalkboard paint, as it's not really a useable chalkboard. Nikki had used burlap as the background, but I didn't have enough burlap for all the ladies so I replaced that with vintage sheet music.

Here's a photo from one of the ladies' home, after she put it up (the minute she got home that night!):

I did make two more later, using the burlap, for our daughters:

Here's the FALL banner I made for Melissa hung in her house over her vintage piano:

This was a very fun and easy project and I so appreciate Nikki's Instagram photo which was my inspiration.

What have you made this year for your FALL décor?


Saturday, August 24, 2013

You need pie! BLACKBERRY PIE!

The last few Saturdays of summer are some of my favorite days of the year.  Today was one such example.  After washing and detailing our vehicles I remembered today was our town's annual "Blackberry Arts Festival" and asked Mark if he wanted to take a walk through it.  Sure! So we jumped in the Jeep, which is perfect for a summer ride with the top off it right now. 

We walked around the festival noticing all the blackberry foods and even taste tested a few goodies: 
~blackberry fudge
~blackberry lemonade
~blackberry beef jerky
~blackberry pies, cobblers, and crisps
~blackberry jam
         And so much more!

            (Search Pinterest for Blackberries recipes here!)

Before we went back home we stopped on one of our country roads and picked some blackberries, as I really wanted to make a blackberry pie and some blackberry lemonade.  We picked the best tasting blackberries ever, while a couple of horses kept us company.

Then back home for the lemonade.  I made a pitcher of lemonade then added some blackberry puree  from the fresh blackberries. We ate some Summer Sausage (we bought at the festival), Colby Jack cheese and crackers, sipping on our iced blackberry-lemonade. 

 Then I moved on to my Baking Corner and made a blackberry pie.  I realized I haven't made a blackberry pie in a couple years.  Back when there were always kids around here I'd make SEVERAL a WEEK!  I'd tell the girls, just bring me four cups of picked blackberries and I promise to always make a pie for you.  I can whip up a pie and get it in the oven in less than 5 minutes.

And back out of the oven in 45 minutes....

When the pie was baking I painted a quick little sign, "You need pie!"

I could barely get the pie out of the oven before I just had to take a teaspoon and taste test my blackberry pie.  Perfect....Yummy.  "Mark, do you want to try a piece?"  "Best pie you've ever made!"  LOL We have fun here at Sweet Woodruff Acres.

It's time for dinner, but no one is hungry...

Enjoy these sweet summer days...
             Blessings, Heidi

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

White Chocolate Chips, Craisins and Mary Engelbreit

After a very busy weekend (visiting relatives) I finally got to our mailbox today to find a book.  I hadn't ordered a book recently (the last week or so!) and wondered what it was.  To my surprise it was Mary Engelbreit's newest cookbook, "120 Dessert Recipe Favorites: Mary Engelbreit's Fan Fare Cookbook". *

Whoot, whoot!  Two of my recipes are included in this cookbook.  When you send in a recipe and her company uses it, you receive a free cookbook.  I'm delighted to see my name in print, since I haven't written a book, yet, this sort of satisfies my "WRITE A BOOK" on my imaginary life bucket list.

If you can, do purchase this cookbook, some white chocolate chips and craisins, then make my recipes.  You'll thank me.
(*I just notice the release date is September 10, 2013.  You can preorder on Amazon.)

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Shabby Chic White Painted Cedar Hope Chest Project & some Running Around

I hit the mother load on Mother's Day weekend!  Yes, Mark treated me like a Queen Mother!  I've had a list of "wish" items and he drove me around several towns for a few days and made it happen. I needed new running shoes badly, I think I've clocked almost 700 miles on my current pair. That's obviously very bad. 

I wear Saucony Ridge Trail, as I run on a gravel/dirt road.  I needed (wanted) a few things from Lowe's and at the top of my list was:

... the "Paint Sprayer", which every DIY girl needs! It's wonderful!  It's the Graco 2900 model, a good light weigh sprayer for small jobs, such as this cedar chest project I'll tell you about.

This before photo was taken in the garage of the lady I bought it from.  She was asking $25 for this hope chest, which is a Lane.  But when I got to there to look at it in person it was in such horrible shape I wanted to drive away empty handed.  However I'm a sucker for a project like this one, so I offered her $20. She quickly, TOO quickly, agreed and then said, "Great.  I was just going to burn it anyway!" It is 30 years old and was stored in a garage way too long. One of her dogs had chewed up a couple of the corners, the base was completely crumbling because of water damage, there was white paint stained all over the front, the inside lock latch is missing and I think a small child might have practiced his knife skills on the edges.  However, the inside was in perfect condition (or close to). 

I have to just say now how much I love my Mark.  The end of this month we'll be celebrating our 32 wedding anniversary and I love him more and more every day!  Especially the day he helped unload this diamond in the rough!  No wonder we're married. He said, "Well, we can rebuild the base completely."   Did you get that? "We"?  I'm blessed, I know it!

Turns out even that part took WAY more time than even he imagined.  He used what was left of the old base as a pattern and cut and constructed a new base, as solid as ever.  He knew it had to be solid or the chest would just be a flimsy piece of furniture. It took him half a day but it's perfect!

So...back to the paint sprayer....  I've got one coat of paint on and hope to do a second coat this weekend.  I took off the fake drawer pulls to clean them up while I painted.  I had a brilliant idea to soak them in Acid Magic....overnight.  Oops.  Acid being the overnight operative word: not a good idea. They are no long usable so I'll find another set to replace those. 

I'll try to post the final picture later.
Back to Mother's Day:  We picked up 6 more blueberry plants from 101 Plants and Things down in Bandon on Highway 101.  It was the first time I've been there and was very impressed with the quality of their plants.  We'll go back for a few more blueberry plants soon. Our berry garden is doing great now, the raspberries are growing fast and the blueberry plants are doing much better after some ground work. (That "ground" work is when I hurt my foot but that story is too long to tell here!)  The old strawberry plants that have perpetually been growing now for 21 plus years, since my sister Roberta had a bunch sent to me as a  "Welcome to your new home" gift when we moved here.  They do need to be completely removed now as they barely bare any berries....... okay getting tired now!
More later, hopefully sooner than later!
PS Thank you for all your sign orders!