Hi, How'dy, How are ya?

Welcome to "The Country Schoolmarm"! Get yourself a cup of coffee (I take mine strong with vanilla creamer), grab a seat, and chat a while! Isn't that what country friends do? Now, all we need is a porch...

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Oh, good grief. I got a rock...

     Spoiler Alert... I may have rambled off topic somehow to "Downton Abbey".  If you have not watched season 3 in its entirety, click this blog closed and walk away.  Otherwise, go ahead and read.

     Okay, so Charlie and I are confused about this whole Google Reader thingy.  I looked online and found something called "Feedly".  They even had an app. It just moved all of the blogs I read over to it.  


      Now, here is where I am confused, the rock in the bag so to speak.  What about your followers or followers in the future?  Since Blogger, a Google product, will still be there, will you still join by Google Friends Connect?  What am I supposed to do? Ugh.  This feels like Y2K. I feel like I am storing up canned vegetables and am not sure why or how to use them.  Charlie, who does not understand metaphors, has now offered to eat them. "Charlie, you can't eat them.  I am using the metaphor as a way to express my confusion if all of this effort is futile or necessary." Charlie- "Yeah.  All I heard was can and 'waa waaa waa wa wa'. Can means food.  Stop yappin' and go get it." Pardon me, my dear readers... Charlie and I need to have a little chat about something Aretha Franklin sings about: R-E-S-P-E-C-T.

     Okay, so we are back.  Now here is another question.  What do those of you who craft, recommend as the best way to sell your wares?  I would like to do crafting a little more seriously this summer (and will have a giveaway...Hmmm), but I feel like just having it on my blog isn't really productive.  I am mainly chatting on my blog.  I am happy with a smaller number of followers to interact with on my blog.  But, that doesn't work with selling wares..  I have dolls and pin cushions that I would like to sell. What do you all recomend?  What have you found to be easy to use and yet provide some visibility? 
     I am not thinking this will allow me to retire for teaching.  I can't churn things out that fast, or am accomplished enough to charge much.  I am looking to make some money to buy mulch or use it for small home repairs (The Dowager Countess of Grantham would be horrified at my undignified talk about money.  Shocking.  Don't tell her.  Or my spinning around on a swivel chair.  If you watch "Downton Abbey", you'll know what I mean.  It is okay if you still don't think it is funny... Oh, and rabbit trail-  I finally brought myself to watch the final episode of season 3. If I didn't know something bad was going to happen, I would be really upset.  It is like watching Titanic.  You know the ship sinks so you aren't as surprised.  But the poor British people!  That was their Christmas Special. Okay, back to the topic at hand...).  So, large percentages taken out or big costs to list and maintain... I don't know if it would be worth it.  eBay seems to be hit or miss with sales.

So, anywhoo, if you have time to share your thoughts about any of these topics, I would surely appreciate.  And so would Charlie...

Love and Hugs!
Heather and Charlie

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Wednesday Whats and What Nots...

Charlie's List:  
What I will be doing: 
  • Chewing on my toy that is supposed to be "almost indestructible".  It's not.
  •  Destroying and de-squeakering my new toy. 
  • Taking a nap (That can be checked off the list multiple times already).  
  • Getting into my sister's personal space. 
  • Sleeping in a sunny spot.
What I will not be doing:
  • Staying out of mischief and not trying to chase birds or beetles.
The Marm's List:
What I will be doing: 
  • Cleaning out everything under my bed and purging shoes- keep, toss, donate. 
  • Cleaning the bedroom and kitchen.  
  • Sprucing up the house with some Americana decor.
What I may be doing: 
  • Making some stumpy dolls and pinkeeps to sell.
  • Working on my "room for my own particular use" (AKA a sorry dumping ground closet that also doubles as my work/craft room).  Depends on the heat.  We only have one air conditioner right now.  The Marm and humid heat do NOT get along well.  At all.  Truly.
What I will NOT be doing
  • Working in the "Garden of Weedin' ".  I need too. But just not gonna.
  • Sitting on the deck of the beach house, reading books, listening to the ocean (Please give me a moment here.  *sniff*).  Vacations give you leave to sit in an Adirondack chair and read the afternoon away.  At home, well, it is considered down right lazy. Oh well.  Charlie wanted to add his smart alecky comment "Hah!  Dogs can sit around all day- it's what we do!"  Charlie- no biscuit for you for that wisecrack (Shhh. Don't tell him.  I'll give in.  Who can resist those big brown eyes?)

Here are a few more pictures of my trip to Rodanthe.  I was very blessed and thankful to take this vacation.  We hadn't taken a vacation in years.  I promise we will be back to our regular prim programming soon!

So, what are you up to today?

I hope your day is a great one!  I hope the storms aren't too bad, my dear Great Lakes States friends!  Doppler looks ugly up there!  Of course, you'll send it here eventually!  Thanks for your generosity! ;) Stay safe and cool!



Monday, June 24, 2013

Home Again, Home Again...

Well, school is over, and I am back from the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Back to mounds of wash and a house to clean.  It is so true that you sometimes need a vacation from your vacation.  

But, what a delightful treat to have this sweet package waiting for me when I returned!  I had entered Brenda's The Rusty Thimble Facebook Summer Giveaway.  Guess what!  I won! Brenda is so generous with her many giveaways and is so talented- such a plethora of prim items on her Etsy. Thank you so much, Brenda, for brightening my week with my adorable patriotic Annie!  I will show more pictures once the wash is done and the house is cleaned up!  Time for summer decor!

Hope your summer is going well!  Love and hugs to you all!  I will be dusting off my keyboard soon!


Saturday, June 8, 2013

Almost there...

     So the school year is done.  My students are gone.  My room is getting emptier.  I am closing up shop.  Things still to do: 5 days of in service, report cards, and cleaning my room (ugh.  It needs it!). Oh, you saw the doll?  Well, we'll get to her later...

     Exciting things?  They have begun construction on an addition to the school.  It is interesting to see the "bowels" of the school since the ceiling panels are being removed.  And, apparently, we really do have bats in our belfry. But God is sooooo good.  I have been there for 12 years.  I was their first fourth grade teacher, and now, their third fifth grade teacher. My first class had 5 students.  We had 3 kindergartens, 1 first, 1 second, 1 third, and 1 fourth.  A few years ago, we dropped to an all time low of 60 students.  We thought we would have to shut down.  But, God had mercy on us and other plans for us.  Next year, we will have 180 students.  We have NEVER had 180 students.  My class, instead of its normal range from 6-14 students, will have 20 students.  We will have 3 kindergartens, 3 first grades, 2 second grades, 2 third grades, 1 fourth, one fifth (with an aid!  Yippeee!), and our middle school will continue for the second year.  We don't have a speck more room.  So many people have donated work or even steel for free to make this happen.  God is so good.  It is overwhelming. But, it is a mighty responsibility for all of these little hearts and souls.  I know I sometime ask for prayer, but if you could thank and praise God on behalf of my school for His amazing work and grace, I would appreciate it!

     My class has a dedication ceremony.  We call it a service of consecration.  Many schools call it fifth grade graduation.  We want to focus less on a completing of a grade, more so on praying over them and celebrating with them the next phase in their life and the importance of God being in it. Students have to give a short speech, they get really nice Bibles (which they just lovingly carry back to their seats.  It always gives me a happy heart).
     I have to give a speech, which doesn't bother me.  I wish I was this confident back in speech class in college.  It would have gone A LOT better.  But, it is a lot of work getting the final prep done.  I was up for 48 hours straight.  I am still not caught up on sleep.  Especially on a cloudy day like today.  Zzzzzzz...
     BUT!  We always get the most delicious cake (it has been know as "Mrs. Wise's request- they are so kind!).  I have a real weakness for good, homemade cake.  This comes from a bakery called "The Bakers of Buffington".  It tastes like the butter cake your grandmom would make.  Oh. My.  I have to admit, sometimes I drift off on stage during the ceremony thinking about the cake.  Shhh.  Don't tell.

     So, in "reward" of a long week, I am declaring this day a crafting holiday.  I have set up the comfy chair with all of my needfuls, ready to go.  I have my coffee ready and the series "Miss Marple" keyed up!
Love feedsacks!  These are remnant squares.  I want to use them for prim little dresses, but I don't know if I can bring myself to cut them up!

My pinkeeps are just hanging around.  Selling them from a blog is hard.  So, these will be listed on Ebay.  If you are interested in these, or others on my blog, please let me know.  I won't list them on Ebay.  There are some other items on eBay that are ending today!  Check it out!

     Okay, so I got this doll at my antique flea market on garage sale days.  I paid $10 for her.  The lady said that she found her in her mother's or grandmother's attic (I forget). She also said she had a face that only a mother could love.  LOL! She certainly has the face a prim mother would love! I named her Annabelle. 
     I don't know if she is old, but she is really unusual.  I am curious what you all think.  There are a lot of pictures, but I wanted you to be able to see the workmanship.  I like her no matter what, and I think that $10 is an okay price to pay.  So, on with the show...

Sorry that she is "mooning" you, but the different colors of wood were interesting.

It looks like "N U E Powell" and then the number is either a 18 or 78.

So, that is the word, Humminbirds, here!  What are you up to this weekend?  I can't wait until vacation to sit down and get caught up on blogs!  Thank you for sticking with me!

Love and hugs,


Saturday, June 1, 2013

A little bit of this and a little bit of that...

We interrupt this programming to let you know that "Charlie's Prim Tour" cannot be seen at its regular time due to magazine ripping circumstances.  Again. Therefore, we are substituting "The Schoolmarm's Tidbits" in its place.  We apologize for the inconvenience.  We now join our show already in progress...
I've been framed, I tell you!  Framed!

Bargain Buying...

     There is just something about baskets.  I have some Longberger baskets (two very SMALL ones). But I love market style baskets, old picnic baskets, and egg gathering baskets. But I try not to pay much for them.  My favorite basket, a picnic basket with a solid top, I got as a steal at $10.  It is so sturdy, and it is perfect for hiding things in.  It holds my crafting supplies! I do love berry baskets as well.  They are great for displaying and making little prim vignettes.  I have been making strawberries at night- quick and easy and relaxing.  I think some prim dolls or "food" would look perfect in this prim carriers!  What do you use your baskets for?

     I love folk art!  I got this little guy for $.25! It is on old barnwood.  It looks to be a  type of wormwood (no worms included)... The back side us beautiful too!


     Wrapping up the school year has been quite stressful.  I only have 4 days left plus 5 days of inservice (talking about the year, report cards, and cleaning classrooms). So, I have been coming home and crafting.  I have made strawberries, grunged jars, made primitive stump dolls, anything.  I don't know if I would sell any of it, but it sure is fun filling the home with crafts from you all and adding my own touch.  
     I remember one of my first conversations with my first and only follower at the time, Christine from Preferably Prim, about making prims- it may be lopsided or missing stitches, but that is okay!  It's prim!  So I can patch or sew over a seam I missed (a whole section, okay!). But the patches give it character and a hominess (or homeliness...).  Kind of like people.  You see these pictures of beautiful hands or faces that are timeworn with age and experience.  What a thing of beauty!  Doesn't the Bible talk about grey hairs being a good thing?  Okay, I had a rabbit trail there... Also a sign of age but ANYWHOO!
     So, here are some $2 jars that I primified.  You can use thinner paper bags or slightly thicker (disclaimer- I will not take blame for jammed printers!).  I found some old free labels or free clipart to make my own labels. I cut them down to 8-1/2 x 11.  Watch carefully as they print.  I grab the front edge when it come out to keep tension on it so it doesn't jam (it kind of helps).Our Pioneer Homestead is just a wealth of labels and tutorials! I have learned a lot from Pamela!  Check out her blog!  I put m labels on with some modge podge and stained it with coffee!  Wallah! The bag behind is just an old sugar bag that I stuffed with cotton.  Sugar with your coffee?
A thrift store find that says it all!
     Here is my grunging station.  My husband so loves me working on the stove... Yes.  That is sarcasm. But I messed around with some things and found that acrylic brown paint watered down and with a lot of cinnamon added to the mix makes a great grunging medium. Then, I sand the cloth to take some off and give it some dips or splashes of coffee to stain it further.  The concoction really smells great.  The cloth seems to really hold onto the wonderful smell and gives it a gritty texture that doesn't rub and fall off easily because the cinnamon has bonded with the paint.  Oh, and I found that leaving out the mixture allows some of the water to evaporate making a thicker, more prim grunging slurry. You all probably do this already, but I was really excited by how well it worked!

One stump doll (the one in the front.  The other I purchased!).

I made a bitty strawberry and stitched it to the bird's beak.  I think I could easy change out the dangling thing seasonally.  I think it looks great with Granny Trace's pin tuck!

A ginormous strawberry I made using some wool that Steve's grandmom left me when she passed. Cherished scraps...

So, yeah, can you burn a strawberry!  I really primified these!  I used wool, felt, and some cute red printed cotton scraps. See, that is what happens when the cinnamon is too dry on the crafts and you put it in the oven to dry. The cinnamon burns easily.  Ooops.

Had some brown homespun.  Hubby wanted a darker curtain behind the light one.  We are trying to keep the house darker to keep it cooler.
I made these a while ago.  I ordered some springs from eBay.  I tried two different looks.  My mom liked the one with the quilt material, so she got that one for Mother's Day.  I am 39, and I still make my mom stuff for Mother's Day. Ugh.
This is a cloth covered bottle.  I saw one in a store for $8, so I though, "Hmmm, could I make that?" Mine is not nearly as nice.  BUT, can you guess what kind of bottle I used for it?  Gold Stars for correct answers!

Proverbs 31:13

"She seeks wool and flax,
    and works with willing hands."

Thank you for taking time out of your creating and enjoying your weekend to visit me!  Please keep our Oklahoma friends in your prayers.  My sister lives in Oklahoma, and though she may not have suffered home damage (Praise God), the emotional wear and tear from frayed nerves is taking a toll too.

Love and hugs!