Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Last Event of the Season!

If you haven't had the chance to join me yet this year, this will be your last chance to do so before Christmas!

Join me Saturday, December 3rd
Eastern High School's Holiday Craft Fair
Laurel Oak Rd, Voorhees, NJ  from 9am-3pm
I'll be in the Gym set up with all of my available instock items that you see on WoodstreamDream plus new items I'm creating the next few days just for the craft fair!

Customers who are too far to visit in-person, please note these cut-off dates:
For Christmas delivery, the last day to place CUSTOM orders is December 4th.
For Christmas delivery, the last day to place IN-STOCK orders is December 11th.
Any orders placed after those dates will not be guaranteed for delivery before Christmas.

My etsy shop will remain open through the winter.  I will be working on new designs and creations.

Thank you for your continued support and patronage!
Have a blessed and peaceful Advent season!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Cyber Monday Code

Update:  coupon code MONDAY20 is valid through Tuesday, November 29th @ 10pm ET - see rules below:

This code will be active 8am to 10pm ET on Monday, November 28th.
MONDAY20 is good for 20% off your instock purchase from WoodstreamDream - it is not valid on any custom orders or gift certificates.

In the past week I've finished a scarf in marine blue recycled cotton blend yarn and a flower cap and flower closure neckwarmer in orchid tweed acrylic yarn (both for 6-9 year old girl).  These will be photographed and added to my shop in the next couple of days.

I have a black bamboo blend banded cloche finished, but I need to locate a stunning vintage button to adorn it before I can list the hat.
I'm working on a 3-4T wild berry tweed acrylic chin-tie hat that is very similar to the hat seen here.  I don't work from patterns, so it will be similar in style, but the flower will be different.
I'm also working on a baby hat in 100% US grown cotton in a pale purple.
The next project after that will be a dark olive green 100% US grown cotton hat for a toddler boy.

Thanks for reading and have a blessed week!

Thanksgiving and Advent

Good evening, I hope that you've enjoyed this lovely weekend.  The weather in New Jersey has been beautiful all of this Thanksgiving weekend!

On Thursday we celebrated with my husband's family, it was a delicious meal and the four cousins had a great time playing with each other in the mild outdoors.  The meal was delicious.  I made the cranberry sauce and a lemon meringue tart.

Friday we had a full day of errands and then we moved dining room furniture from my parents' home to our home.  Our dining room has taken on a whole new personality with the new-to-us furniture.  My husband and I will be choosing trim to put up in the dining room and family room over the coming weeks.  I'll share before and after pictures once those projects are complete.

Saturday we prepared another Thanksgiving meal and hosted my family.  Once again, I failed to photograph dessert.  We had lemon tartlets and pumpkin pie with fresh whipped cream... but no photos because I forgot.  Here are pictures of the dinner that we consumed - and have enjoyed again today... 

Roasted Turkey, Gravy, Scallion Mashed Potatoes, Carrot Souffle, Broccoli Casserole, Sausage Dressing, Cranberry Sauce, Cole Slaw, Grapes, and French Bread

My uncle Kev and my older son

My dad, my younger son, and my mom

Today we began the Advent Season, preparing our hearts for the celebration of the birth of Christ.  I've been inspired by several people in our Sunday School group on ways to incorporate more Bible teachings into my everyday.  I've had good intentions in the past.  I need to create this good habit so that my life is truly Christ-centered.  I think that it's important to do as Paul writes in Romans 13:14, ...clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.  This verse helps to remind me that Christ is on my side and all I have to do is go to Him, in time of need or in time of plenty - I need to keep Him in my heart and on my mind - as my shield at all times.

I am so thankful to have Christ in my life!  There is no greater gift than that of our salvation through Him and the hope that it gives.

Thank you for reading and have a blessed week!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving with family and friends.

Remembering all of the blessing that God has provided this year.

Being thankful for health and home and family and friends.

Knowing that we are truly blessed to have what is ours.

WoodstreamDream on Etsy will be open this whole weekend.  I will check in periodically to answer any customer questions.  Please used code: DREAMBLOG15 for 15% off of your instock order **code not valid on purchase of gift certificates**

I will be spending most of the weekend celebrating our blessings with family.  Tomorrow we visit my in-laws.  Friday we prepare our home for our celebration on Saturday with my family.  Sunday we will worship the Lord with our church family and spend time together the four of us - beginning our Christmas decorating.

Thank you for reading and have a blessed weekend!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Tomorrow's Event

WoodstreamDream will be at the Collingswood Farmers' Market 8am-noon. Stop by, grab something for your Thanksgiving host or get some Christmas shopping done at my table or with the other crafters.  Then stop at the farmers' booths and get some delicious food for your Thanksgiving feast!

WoodstreamDream will be on Vacation Mode tonight through tomorrow afternoon.  I'll update the inventory tomorrow afternoon and be ready for business before dinner time.

Thank you for supporting small businesses today and everyday!  Please be sure to check out Small Business Saturday's page on Facebook and shop local small businesses as often as you can!  Keep your money in your local economy!  Thank you for your patronage!

Have a blessed weekend!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


After writing this, I was reluctant to share this post.  I don't want it to be contrived as tooting my own horn or flying my own flag.  This is a post about how we are sharing with our community the goodness that God has blessed our family with this year.  I wanted to share this so that you may be inspired to give as you are able.

Last Friday we finished packing our shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child and delivered them to church.

I picked up extra groceries and we delievered them to the food bank donation basket on Sunday at church.  I do this periodically through the year.

We have growing donation bags in the upstairs hallway that need to make it to Goodwill soon. The bags are filled with outgrown clothes and shoes from the boys, clothes from my closet that haven't been worn in a few years - no point in letting those perfectly good clothes "hang around" when someone else could put them to good use.  This is usually a seasonal donation, as the children grow and as the weather changes.

We have a few new toys that are "duplicates" (gifts that were received that the children already own).  Those will make it into the Toys for Tots donation box where our boys swim.

It's nearly that time of year - to sift through the toys in the playroom and decide what will be stored for future grandchildren to play with and what will be donated.

We will soon receive requests for donations to families in need from our town through the school and through my husband's work for a Santa's Elves program, paring families in need from a local special-needs school with each department in the company where he works.  We will contribute to each of these programs what we are able when the time comes.

We always have the person on our list who we don't know what to give to the person or they have everything and don't really need anything.  For those people, I try to find a handmade trinket on Etsy or at a local craft fair.  Then we make a donation through World Vision to purchase chickens or a goat or whatever I would spend on the person's gift.

Giving of our time is perhaps the most difficult.  In the future I hope to be able to do some sort of time-giving contribution - delivering Thanksgiving meals through Fellowship House or serving meals at a local soup kitchen.

The feeling of giving is amazing, incredibly rewarding.

In this process I remind myself that I cannot save the world, but I can touch a life.  I also have to remind myself that there is a season for everything.  There may be a time when we are unable to give or when we are in need of someone else's generosity.

I would love to hear how you give, at this time of the year or during other times of the year.  Please take the time to post a comment below.

Thank you for reading and have a blessed day!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Cranberry Season

Yesterday my older son was off for election day.  After we dropped the little one at preschool, we ran a few errands.  First stop was at Home Depot to buy paint for the dining room.  While we were waiting for the paint to be mixed, the girls behind the counter were talking about Thanksgiving dinner.  One loves stuffing and the other doesn't.  I chime in, I'm not a stuffing lover, but I adore homemade cranberry sauce.  So the stuffing lover asked how I make it.  I told her and she jotted it down.  Then she copied it for the other girl who wanted to make it for her mother because her mother loves cranberry sauce.  This is the recipe I shared:

Homemade Cranberry Sauce

1 bag cranberries, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup water
1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar

In a 3 quart sauce pan, put cranberries, water, and sugar.  Turn the heat to medium, cover with lid and cook until all berries have popped and it's bubbly, stir occassionally.  Turn off the heat after 15 minutes.  Allow sauce to cool for 15 minutes.  Then pour into container and refrigerate.  Or if you prefer no seeds and skins, you can work the sauce through a mesh strainer with a rubber spatula.  It is tedious, but it's so divine what comes out!  I refrigerate up to a week or freeze up to 6 months.  This creates a tart sauce that's a bit thinner than applesauce.  You can multiply this recipe and adjust the sugar up or down to your tastes.

I remember making cranberry sauce with my mother as a child.  We had the jellied (from a can) kind at my grandparents' home and it was fun to slice and eat - almost like a Jell-O mold, but at home we usually had the fresh kind.  She would let the sauce cool in the pot and then pour it into an antique chinois that my brother and I would take turns using to press the cranberry sauce out into the bowl below with the wooden pestal.  I loved helping with that chore.  You can see a picture of the same kind of chinois  that my mother had during my childhood here.  I don't know what happened to that beautiful simple machine, but I would love to have it for my own cullinary adventures!

These days I use the more complicated Squeez-o strainer with the berry strainer to make my cranberry sauce.  I make 4 bags worth at a time, minimum.  I make it to take to my in-law's for Thanksgiving day, for our celebration on Thanksgiving Saturday, and to freeze and pull out when we have turkey during other times of the year.  I sit with the bowl during dessert and eat the last of it from the meal because I so adore the cranberry.  I love the simplicity of the chinois...  So many of the ones marketed today have mesh strainers (unbearable to clean the cranberry seeds from) - or perforated tin (rust - ick), I prefer the perforated aluminum kind that my mother had.  It will be one of those things that I search out for a while until I find it.

Thank you for reading and have a blessed week!

Monday, November 7, 2011

November Events

Good Afternoon!

Thank you for stopping by for a quick read!

Starting today - the Sunshine Farm Girl Co-op Team's November Online Craft Show is open!  I'm featured this round.  Check out the shops.  Coupon codes are available for many.  Support crafts people, get Christmas shopping done, and don't leave the comfort of your home!  :)
November Online Craft Show

November 19th 1:30-4pm - I'm teaching a Christmas Card & Gift Tag Making Class at Zuzu Studio Gallery in Collingswood, NJ.  Cost is $25pp or $20pp when you register with a friend.  Please contact Allison @ Zuzu to register.  We will be making three cards and a set of four gift tags.  I'll walk you through step-by-step instructions as we make some beautiful creations!  Come enjoy a great afternoon out!  Here are two samples of the creations we'll be making:

Keep checking my shop for new items!  I've been adding new crochet, felted cashmere flowers, and Christmas items to my shop for the past few days.  If there's something you see and you'd like to have it in a different color or size, please just send me a message - I love working on custom orders!

Thank you again for your time!  Have a blessed day!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Contagious ... with Thankfulness

Cliche for this time of year to be speaking, a-hem writing about thankfulness, but it's so incredibly important.

I've experienced a turbulent couple of weeks of highs and lows and unplanned adventures... looking at the sunny side of things after the fact.  In those moments, I did not see these highs and lows so sunnily (I love making up words, don't you?).  I did not see them as blessing.  I was not thankful.  Only later did I see the learning opportunity and was thankful to experience those things.

Every night we say prayers with the children, always in thanksgiving for the little things in life - health, safety, a home, my husband's job, safe travels, family and friends, food a plenty...

This week I've been saying extra thankful prayers for...
~safe travels for my husband - coming home tonight from a week away on business
~electricity - we lost for several hours Tuesday... nothing compared to other areas of the country, but still unnerving in the cold, alone with the children at night
~running water - we had none for the day on Sunday, on the short term much easier to live without than electricity
~friends - who offer graciously and generously
~inspiration - God has blessed me greatly
~restful sleep - for restoration of the body is necessary to thrive
~high speed internet - so I can talk/Skype with my brother & his family, they live overseas and we haven't seen them in 1.5 years

Thankfulness is contagious.  If we live in a state of thankfulness, others will begin to see how little there really is to bemoan in their own lives.  At least that is what I tell myself when I find myself feeling grumbly.  I turn it around and find something to be thankful for - it helps with the mood and in handling those unexpected adventures.

Thank you for being generous with your time and reading this blog!  Take a moment, if you would, and share what you're thankful for today...