Tuesday, December 20, 2011

25 Days of Handmade Christmas: Day 20

Today is officially my last day of work for the year! Thirteen days off for Christmas without using a single vacation day... man do I love working for a university! :)

For day 20, I'm working with a brand new blogger. Emma is just getting started at Creative Me, Creative You and wanted to share with you her ideas for bringing the outdoors in for the holidays. Her idea is simple, cute, and inexpensive. Plus I'm sure it smells wonderful! For her first guest-post ever, here's Emma!


I remember as a child sitting at my grandparents’ knees where we heard stories of growing up during the great depression. These stories helped spark a desire for learning and reading. Hearing them talk about decorating the house with strings of popcorn or hanging pinecones from the windows gave several childish ideas and questions. Now that I have children of my own and want to share “new-to-us” traditions, I’m pulling old ideas out and throwing in a twist.

There are so many cute crafts available with pine cones – dipping and rolling them in paint, spray-painting them, hanging them from the ceiling or hiding them amidst the greenery. Acorns, leaves, rocks – all the little treasures we like to collect on nature walks. And those ornaments that are just laying around the house needed to be displayed. But how?


Photobucket   Photobucket

We took the treasures and compiled them into a clear fruit bowl we had sitting on a shelf collecting dust. There are recipes online for baking the pinecones and acorns in essential oils to make a type of potpourri. We used an essential oil room spray and doused the items before baking in the oven at 250 degrees for 1-1 ½ hours. (Using essential oils, I believe it has to be baked for 3 hours.)

We put down a bed of leaves and pine straw before placing 5 pine cones into the bottom of the bowl, four around the side and one in the middle. We then put a glittery ornament between each pine cone. Next, we put pine cones on top of the glittery ornaments and put ornaments on top of the bottom layer of pine cones. We put some leaves between the sides and the middle. 

We alternated each layer, interspersing the leaves and acorns, until we had the finished project, shown here:   

As needed, I take the essential oil room spray and touch-up on the pinecones. It brings a little of the outdoors in and helps us to appreciate nature, and the season, more. 

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