Fall Fabric Swap ~ Fun Fun Fun

This was so much so much fun. My package arrived today and Laura over at Ohio Brants picked out fabric for me that I would have picked out for myself! I was to pick out fabric for Sarah over at Marvellous Mouse Design and had a lot of fun doing it. She makes aprons so I stayed with the food theme and couldn’t decide exactly which ones so added a couple extras as a thank you for hosting the swap. I hope she enjoys them as much as I enjoyed Laura’s package.

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Win a back pack for your young one

Go back to school this year in style with Warm Biscuit Bedding Company!

They are currently promoting their School Time items and you just have to stop by and see and great things they have!

Win it!

Warm Biscuit has generously donated a Classic Cotton Backpack for one lucky winner (your choice of Dragonfly or Vintage Train design). To enter:

  • Stop by Warm Biscuit before midnight, August 28th.
  • Then come back and mention in comments what your favorite item is. That’s it!
  • A random winner will be selected and notified on August 29th.
  • The winner will then have 3 days to claim their prize.

To earn more entries, you may do one or all of the following. Each one counts as an extra ticket. Please leave a separate comment for each extra entry.

This giveaway is open to US addresses. Good luck!

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The Recipe Box Swap – Cherry Conserves

While answering comments this morning I ran across a monthly meme called The Recipe Box Swap over at I have to say… that is right up my alley. Most of you know by now I cook primarily from scratch avoiding as many boxed and canned items or processed items as possible. So what better way to share a recipe than a recipe swap that revolves around fresh ingredients? I was able to score some beautiful cherries at the farmer’s market recently and they were wonderful ingredients for this recipe. I also like to make large batches if I’m going to make that big a mess, so this recipe is for a double batch. This recipe was also a 1st place winner at the LA County Fair.

7 cups cherries ~ washed, pitted and halved
1 cup cranberries ~ washed and halved
1 tablespoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup orange juice
10 cups sugar
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
2 packages pectin

  • In a small bowl soak the raisins in the orange juice for at least an hour before beginning.
  • In a large stock pot combine the cherries, cranberries, cinnamon and lemon juice. Mix well.
  • Simmer over medium heat for 15 minutes or so until the fruit is soft enough to create a mashed mush as it thickens. Add the sugar and walnuts and mix well.
  • Bring to a rolling boil.
  • When the rolling boil cannot be stirred away add the pectin and boil for 2 minutes more, stirring constantly.
  • Remove from heat, skim foam and immediately pour into sterilized jars.
  • Water bath 15 minutes.
  • Enjoy.

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Win a Fabulous Vintage Apron from the Apron Queen!

Meredith over at Mercedes Rules is hosting the giveaway for Vintage Aprons at Rick Rack Attack. How would you like to win a fabulous vintage apron from The Apron Queen over at Rick Rack Attack? You even get to choose your prize! You don’t have to have a blog to win. The Apron Queen will be giving the winner her choice of a Vintage Apron from her shop. You have TWO chances to win. All you have to do to is to go over to her shop at Rick Rack Attack, and choose which of her many aprons is your favorite. Then leave a comment here (including a link to your favorite vintage apron) to enter the giveaway. You may also enter by posting about this giveaway (including a link to this post) on your own blog, and leaving a second comment with the link to your post. Good Luck!! Deadline to enter is Friday August 8th at 11:59pm CST. Winner will be drawn at random and announced on Monday, August 11th.


  • You must be 18 or older to enter (void where prohibited)
  • This contest is only open to residents of the U.S.
  • ONE chance: leave a comment HERE including the link to the apron of your choice
  • SECOND chance: post about this post on your blog (including a link to this post) and leave a comment HERE with the link to your post
  • If you are a non-blogger, please make sure you include your email address so you can be contacted.

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1 year Blog Anniversary & A HUGE thank you!!!!!

I’ve been thinking long and hard on how to handle my 500th post/Blog anniversary. My 500th post actually came first so I decided to wait for the anniversary instead. I was going to do a giveaway, but recently decided the best way to handle it was to practice a random act of kindness towards Barbara who out of the kindness of her heart worked tirelessly with me to create “MY” blog, “MY” way.

So my giveaway tomorrow is a surprise thank you ‘swap’ style package that is making it’s way towards her this next week. I know she knows how much I appreciated the help, but wanted to show her too!

So in the spirit of my most recent swap, it’s some of my favorite things including a hand made item and a thrifted item similar to the Sweet Goodness Swaps.

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Hachette Books Giveaway at Bookshipper

Attention all readers you NEED to check out this giveaway contest at Bookshipper sponsored by Hatchette Books.
Hachette Book Group was generous enough to offer to send to the winners of this contest a total of 14 books (yes! all fourteen of them) to EACH winner. Here is a list of the great books you could win:

Hachette Book Group USA Summer Reads Giveaway:

Fact over Fiction:
The Monster of Florence by Douglas Preston, $25.99
(ISBN: 0446581194 Read an Excerpt Listen to an Excerpt
View the Video Author Website * Audio Book Available)

The Preacher and the Presidents by Nancy Gibbs , Michael Duffy, $14.99
(ISBN: 1599951045 Read an Excerpt * Audio Book Available)

Swine Not? by Jimmy Buffett , Helen Bransford, $21.99
(ISBN: 0316035599 Author Website Listen to an Excerpt)

Historical Fiction:
Miscarriage of Justice by “Kip” Gayden, $22.99
(ISBN: 159995687X Chapter Excerpt)

Trespassers Will Be Baptized by Elizabeth Hancock, $21.99
(ISBN: 1599957086 Author Website Reading Group Guide)

He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not by Trish Ryan, $19.99
(ISBN: 1599957132 Author Website Reading Group Guide )

Reading Group Recommendations:
A Summer Affair by Elin Hilderbrand, $24.99
(ISBN: 0316018600 * Audio Book Available)

Barefoot by Elin Hilderbrand, $13.99
(ISBN: 0316018597 Chapter Excerpt Reading Guide 1 * Audio Book Available)

Made in the U.S.A. by Billie Letts, $24.99
(ISBN: 044652901X Read an Excerpt * Audio Book Available)

Off Season by Anne Siddons, $24.99
(ISBN: 0446527874 Listen to an Excerpt * Audio Book Available)

A Rose by the Door by Deborah Bedford, $6.99
(ISBN: 0446677892 Chapter Excerpt)

Remember Me by Deborah Bedford, $6.99
(ISBN: 0446690430 Chapter Excerpt Reading Guide 1)

Child 44 by Tom Smith, $16.00
(ISBN: 0446402389 Child44book.com Chapter Excerpt
* Audio Book Available)

Close by Martina Cole, $24.99
(ISBN: 0446179965 * Audio Book Available)

Here is how you can enter! Simply leave a comment on this post about ANY of her previous book reviews. She will automatically give you one entry. If you post this contest on your blog page, you will get two entries and if you put my blog name on your permanent blog roll, she will give you an additional 5 entries. They will be picking 5 winners, using Random.org, and each winner will receive all 14 books – free of charge, of course. Hachette Book Group will mail them directly to the winners.

This contest closes on July 31, 2008 at noon Eastern time. Please note that this contest is open to both Canadian and US residents. So check back on the 31st of July.

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Swap Day Galore!

I received these wonderful boxes on the same day!!
What a great treat!!

Breanna was my partner for the My Favorite Things Swap. She sent me this awesome box of her favorite things. We must have more in common than we thought, because they are my favorite things too. She is about to make a major household move, so I thought it absolutely amazing how organized she must be to do a swap in the middle of it! Speaking of organization, she sent me this awesome leather organizer, which I so desperately need for my desk. I have been looking for something just like it for weeks! There is also a copy of Real Simple, one of my favorite magazines for ideas AND to make it more special she started me a subscription, which is sooooooo wonderful as I hadn’t started a new one since we moved! There was also a copy of Twilight by Stephenie Meyer and I haven’t read it yet, some Hot Cocoanut Victoria’s Secret lip gloss, a bottle of my absolutely favorite Aveeno Moisturzing Lotion, a superbly decadent and YUMMY package of Ghiradeli Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter squares, a box of Crystal Light Cherry Pomegranate Immunity vitamin enhanced drink mixes which will be great for this immunity challenged girl, the cutest little post-it note book (I’m addicted too Breanna!, you should see my stash, but I didn’t have one of these adorable books!), a package of my favorite Pilot retractable gel ink rolling ball pens, an awesome Initial book mark, some great felt flowers that I will build a project around and some adorable thank you cards of which she will get the first one! I too am addicted to cards and notes Breanna! One of the things I loved the most were her sweet little notes explaining everything!

Ceekay was my partner for the Sweet Goodness Parasols, Pink Lemonade & Polka Dots swap. Ceekay sent me this fun box with a terrific straw bag, a 1/2 dozen colorful bath sponges, an adorable drink and parasol trinket tray, refreezable ice cubes in pink, purple, aqua and teal, a pedicure set, a pink polka dot journal, polka dotted post it notes and polka dot pen, a magic towel, Wyler’s Pink Lemonade singles box, pink swirled polka dotted napkins, a ginger lemon air freshener, a set of parasol summer plates with matching polka dot glasses and beautiful silver ice tea spoons, polka dotted paper clips and push pins, Country Time Lemonade hard candy, water squirters and bubbles, polka dotted coasters and cocktail napkins, drink parasols for garnish, canvas art set with paints and wonderful scrap booked frame. Ceekay made the adorable tags too as well as the frame. She loves to scrap book.

Thank you so much to both of you!


The Beach House by Jane Green

I just got a great new futon for the family room and need a good book to read while trying it out. I found an opportunity for a great giveaway at S. Krishna’s Books for:

The Beach House – Jane Green

Title: The Beach House
Author: Jane Green
ISBN: 0670018856
Pages: 352
Genre: Women’s Fiction, Beach Read
Review: Originally posted at Curled Up With A Good Book
Rating: **** 1/2 (out of 5)

Wherever Nan Powell goes, whispers seem to follow. At 65 years old, she is one of the older residents of the ‘Sconset area of Nantucket and has quite a reputation around the island. Everyone thinks of her as the eccentric older woman who has lived alone for far too long. While not quite as crazy as she seems, Nan has indeed been alone for a very long time. Her beloved husband, Everett, committed suicide after racking up an enormous gambling debt, leaving Nan to pay his bills and care for their young son, Michael. Now, Michael is living in New York and has trouble finding the time to visit his aging mother.

One day, Nan’s financial advisor comes to her with some dire news: all the money she put in a hedge fund is gone. Her best option now is to sell her property on Nantucket (called Windermere), which is worth several million dollars. As Windermere is the only thing she has left of her dear Everett (she had to sell off the rest of the property in order to pay his debts), she can’t bear the thought of losing the house. Therefore, she comes up with a brilliant plan: she will rent the rooms and run a B&B for the summer, inviting people into her home and slowly watching them become a part of her family.

While The Beach House’s central character is Nan, there are multiple storylines that slowly weave together to form a coherent whole, much as the various persons in the novel gradually come together to be Nan’s family. There are Bee and Daniel, a married couple with two beautiful young daughters who are having marital issues, though it is hard to determine exactly what the problem is. And then Daff and Richard, and their daughter, Jess, who has difficulty coping with what her parents are going through. And then there’s Michael, Nan’s son, and his complicated relationship with his married boss, Jordana. Green tells all these stories seamlessly; there is no jarring disconnect, as happens so often in novels with multiple storylines.

Green’s talent is evident, and shines through in her writing of the characters in the story. By the middle of the book, the reader is invested in each of these characters; it is important that they work through their problems and find a happier place. And at the end of the book, the reader is sad to leave these characters, to not be able to enjoy more of their stories.

The Beach House is the perfect beach read. It is a drama, and is very serious in some places, but it is never a heavy book. It never drags the reader down or makes the reader feel as if he/she has an added weight on their shoulders. Instead, even at the most dramatic moments, it is hopeful and uplifting – a breath of fresh air. It helps to redefine the genre of “beach read;” these books are no longer complete fluff with a lack of depth. Instead the nuances in The Beach House serve to give us a new view of beach reads (and women’s fiction in general). It is Green’s best work to date.

Head on over and check it out.