Spanish Olive Oil Press Mat—a Re-use

Hello sweet people….or should I say, “Hola”……travels to the Catalonia region of Spain have brought many wonderful memories, artifacts and of course…..craft ideas back to insert in my little blog to share with you all.

If I had any international business acumen, I would figure out a way to import these little beauties I found while staying in the countryside of Eastern Spain….olive oil country….rich with generations of olive oil production and traditional methods of oil making.

The press above, lies virtually untouched after many years of retirement in the garage of our friends who so graciously let us stay in their home in a small village named Gandesa.  Their “garage” was filled with many artifacts that American antique lovers would have swooned over.

I notice these “mats” everywhere….similar to a wicker rug….that were used to press the olives and separate the solids from the liquids.  They were washed and dried and apparently left for someone like me to think they were worth crafting with.  In their pure form they looked like this:

A few were generously gifted to me and stuffed in to my already overloaded suitcase.

Of course, there are many practical non-olive-oil-pressing uses for these babies.  A small rug, a centerpiece placemat, a garden mat….or,

a wall hanging……

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A bit of ribbon and ribbon-covered clothes pins and I had a neat way to display some of my pictures from the adventure to Spain.

Enjoy!

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Today’s High Note–Peacefulness at the Abbey

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This past weekend I was fortunate enough to spend time at the Abbey of St. Walburga in Virginia Dale, Colorado.   The Abbey is home to 22 Benedictine Nuns who not only offer their beautiful grounds to those seeking solitude, but also run a full working farm–including over 100 head of grass fed cattle.

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The nuns spend their days in prayer, woodworking, farming, hospitality, jewelry/rosary making and tending to those in need.  They are peaceful.  They are happy.   Truly happy.   It was a blessing to spend time with them….their simplicity and gracious spirituality were contagious.

Needless to say…..

I didn’t want to leave.

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So I offer you this high note for today: the next time the media pushes a frightful image of a Catholic nun with a ruler in her hand, please remember these beautiful images of gentleness….

…and peacefulness at the Abbey.

–dcb

And the winner (s) are…..

Hello sweet people….

Loved all the comments of congrats and support I received in the last few days!

The winner of the big 1 +100 package giveaway  was selected at random……

 

Congrats to Southern Circuit Lady!

 

Check out her blog and all the wonderful paper musings she has going on!

I have to also give a little something to my faithful email followers:

Colleen

Kathleen

Valerie

Trisch

Congratulations to all and here is to another year and 100 more followers!  dcb

1 + 100 = a BIG thank you give away!

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The High Note is celebrating one year and over 100 followers!

A big thank you to all of you for supporting this fun adventure….

And as a very small token of my gratitude I am giving away a package of some of the goodies the High Note has done this year!

Shredded Antique Sheet Music

Custom Note Cards

and

a Music Wrapped Candle

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Like this post and/or leave a comment here to enter!

Winner will be announced Monday 4/22!

 

“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.”

Gilbert K. Chesterton

Homemade Dog (Puppy!) Treats…

It is a snow day here in Colorado….  

The novelty of no school lasted for exactly one hour and three minutes.

 We then progressed to the “I’m bored” stage of the day which is such a wrist cutting sound clear que to do something fun an creative with the kiddos.

In anticipation of our new pup (arriving this weekend!) we decided to make homemade doggie biscuits.  I have had this recipe forever (we had pre-marriage dogs up until a few years ago) and it is all natural and super easy for all to make.

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Recipe & Ingredients:

1 cup cornmeal

1 cup shelled sunflower seeds (optional)

1 cup water

2 cups whole wheat flour

1 egg

1/3 cup vegetable oil

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Mix all ingredients together well.  Knead for for about one minute.  Roll out dough with rolling pin.  Cut with cookie cutter or make small logs–pinch ends to look like a dog bone.

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Bake at 350 degrees on a cookie sheet or I have found a large pizza stone works even better and holds more treats at a time.   Bake for 35-40 minutes.

These make great gifts, too!  Many a teacher and neighbor have received these over the years from my kids…..

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Will send puppy photos next week!

Stay warm…..dcb

Thank You!—Inspiring Blog Award

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Wow!  What a way to start my week!   Thank you so much to Inspiration Sandwich and Space Lift for nominating me for the Inspiring Blog Award…..both of these blogs are wonderful and I feel honored to be nominated by them.

Well, per the guidelines of accepting this award, here are a few things about me:

*I am adopted

*I am married and have three children of my own…ages 7, 9, and 11.

*I lived in Ireland for a while

*I am a native Coloradoan

*I have an addiction to fabric ribbon

*I love fresh cut flowers and the color blue

*The high notes of my life are directly influenced by my faith and family–immediate and extended

Here are some wonderful and inspiring blogs for you to check out:

Happy Little Kiwi

Rustic Vintage Cowgirl

A Day in the Life of Jennay

A Ponytail Kind of Day

Sweet Little Thang

Davisville Design

Pillows A-La-Mode

P.S. I Love Soap

Rooot Treee

DIY and Philanthropy

Art Prescription

wholly kao

Leanne Cole Photography

Turtle and Robot

Travel Monkey

Nominees…..don’t forget to nominate your 15 inspiring blogs and post seven wonderful things about your self!

Happy Monday!  dcb

The Friday How-2: #words

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#Friday, #happy, #blog….

No…I am not tweeting this post.

I am learning another language.  

For you tech heads this post will sound insanely preschool-ish to you, but for the rest of us swimming upstream in a river of social media….you will get my drift.

The hashtag.  A clever means to group ideas, sentiments, adjectives, verbs and even personality traits by using a simple #.  For myself as a parent, I see this as indicative of an entire generation experiencing fragmented and often disconnected means of communicating.  For myself as a blogger-crafter?

Well,  I see a bit of opportunity.

If the hashtag does in fact carry such weight for our young people to use words classify their sense of self and how they see the world….then positive words could go a long way in promoting a valued self image.

Enter The Hash “Tag” .    A little diddy I thought up during one of my sleepless “mom” nights when I lie awake worrying about my children.

Just words on cardstock..a “tag” with a personal element of a handwritten hash mark.  

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A tag that boasts many uses:

*bookmark

*wall or cork board decor

*locker decoration

*luggage or backpack tag

*gift tag

This can be a do-it-yourself project easily done with a printer, paper and some ribbon.  

I plan on giving them as gifts to the teens,  pre-teens and even post-teens in my life.  A reminder of the power of words and the specific, wonderful word that I believe can motivate and positively “classify” them.   

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Happy “hashtagging” to you all!  

#weekend, #wonderful, #dcb

The Friday How-2….Music wrapped candle replay

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Hi sweet people….

Just a quick note to refresh some previous candle-themed posts and to highlight this new addition to my Etsy shop.

Click here for the original DIY…

I can’t tell you how easy these music wrapped candles have become.  

There are so many variations:

*Pictured above is obviously uber spring–couldn’t wait …..

*Rip out the page of an old dictionary on the pages “love”, “Valentine”, “sweet” or any other V-Day related word.  Circle the word with a red Sharpie, embellish, and you have a cute Valentine’s Day Candle.

* Embellish the front of the candle with a chip board initial

*  The possibilities are endless….have one?  Do tell!!

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Have an incredible weekend!  dcb

The Friday How-to: Prayer Boxes

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So…it’s Friday!

As many of you know, I have three wonderful kiddos….ages 7, 9 and (almost) 11.  My eleven year old daughter is part of an amazing group of 5th grade girls.  What mother doesn’t worry about their young girls growing up?  I am often wrought with anxiety over whether or not my girls will make it through their tweens and teens relatively unscathed.

My anxiousness has become assuaged however, by this group of bright, insightful virtuous young women that surprisingly makes up the entire population of 5th grade girls at my daughter’s school.   This is a rarity today….indeed.

Under the inspiration and guidance of a friend of mine, these girls have started a group.  This group  entitled “Growing with Grace”, is  to ironically, help them to become even stronger and  more empowered as girls.    They talk about a wide range of issues including bullying, self-image/puberty, friendship, leadership and their faith.   Each of them have expressed a desire for a safe place to not only talk about their own stuff, but are using this group as a vehicle to learn how to lift each other up….exercising respect, denouncing exclusion and pronouncing grace-filled acceptance of one another.  

Their activity in the group last night (which I was honored to be a part of) was to create prayer boxes.  I wish this idea was my own, but I received the inspiration from a store bought item and from a craft Katherine at Pillows-a-la-mode did this summer upcycling old Altoid tins.  You can check her creation out here.

The concept was for the girls to have a place to not only write their own prayers down, but to write down the prayer needs of others.  

So…we all decorated the empty Altoid boxes with washi tape and flower/gem embellishments, put small sticky note pads/markers in them and all the girls had a unique way to quickly journal any intentions on their hearts for themselves or someone else.

My daughter is apparently praying for a better math grade…..I have to say I really do love this age!!

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With all the news about those kids who are being touted as the demise of our current society….here is some good news about 24 girls who are thankfully…

growing with grace.

have a blessed weekend…..dcb