Tuesday, December 31, 2013

7 swans a swimming . . .

continuing our look at the 12 days of christmas, we are up to day 7 - 7 swans a swimming.

throughout history the swan has been a symbol of royalty and has been used in royal symbols and decorations.  swan meat is also supposed to be quite tasty.  in ancient times swan was part of the traditional christmas menu and other royal feasts of the king. after the 19th century the swan was replaced by the turkey for traditional holiday meant.

swans are also found in myths and folklores dealing with love.  because the swan could both fly and swim the ancient people were fascinated with them.  many believed that had ties to both the natural and supernatural worlds.

the 7 swans represent the 7 gifts of the holy spirit, or the 7 sacraments in christianity.

                      7 gifts of the holy spirit:
  • wisdom
  • understanding
  • counsel
  • courage
  • knowledge
  • piety
  • fear of the Lord
                     7 sacraments:
  • baptism
  • confirmation
  • communion (eucharist)
  • confession
  • anointing of the sick
  • holy orders (apostolic ministry)
  • marriage

Monday, December 30, 2013

6 geese a laying . . . yes, for real!

ok, so we have been thrown off our game a bit the past couple of days, but today the 6 geese a laying are in fact geese!

a goose is one of the oldest domesticated birds. it is also surrounded by some folklore, which is probably the reason it is used here.

because of their migration patterns they are often seen as a symbol of the solar year, and fertility.  ancient egyptians also believed that mummy's soul rose up in the form of a goose with a human head.  the roman goddess juno considered the goose sacred.  why?  it was said that that the geese in her temple honked and cackled to warn her of the barbarians coming.  since then geese have been honored for their protective nature.

by the18th century the goose became the traditional christmas dinner.

in the christian tradition, the 6 geese symbolize the six days in which God created the world.

tomorrow we look at the 7 swans, and the last of the birds. ;)

thanks for stopping by!  happy stamping!


Sunday, December 29, 2013

5 golden rings . . . here we go again --

well -- if you were disappointed yesterday to find out that you had been singing the song wrong all these years because it's "colly birds" instead of "calling birds" -- hang onto your hat.

the 5 golden rings this refers to is not 5 lovely pieces of jewelry at all -- but in fact it refers to the ring on the neck of a pheasant.  (are you starting to see a pattern here -- birds?)

pheasants are native to asia and were brought to europe where they were released into the wild and thrived.  pheasants were a prized bird and were not only tasty, but were linked to royalty and nobility.  legends link the pheasant to jason and the argonauts bringing back golden birds (later believed to be pheasants).  from roman times onward pheasants were reserved for royalty.

so -- we learn something new again today.  the 5 golden rings here refer to the 5 ring-necked pheasants, a dish that was probably served at the kings 12th - night festivities.

the 5 gold rings symbolize the first 5 books of the old testament in the christian tradition.

i can assure you that tomorrow's gift - 6 geese a layin' is in fact geese, surprise, more birds (hehe).  so be sure to stop back in tomorrow to learn of their story.


Saturday, December 28, 2013

4 calling birds. . . nope

today's 12 days of christmas "gift" are 4 colly birds .  yes, you read that right.  all these years you have been singing "calling" birds.  no one is sure where the mix up happened, but it is believed that they really are called colly or collie birds.  a colly bird is basically a european blackbird.  colly means black.  and in europe a coal mine was called a colliery and colly or collie is derived from this.

so, why would you give your true love 4 crows?  it would have been a gift of food.  blackbirds were plentiful and a common food at the time.  we see them again in the nursery rhyme - sing a song of sixpence, we see them being served in a meat pie.  this may have been the way they were commonly served.

in the christian tradition the 4 colly birds symbolize the  four gospels or evangelists - matthew, mark, luke and john.

so -- we've (myself included) have learned something new today  -- and been singing the carol wrong all these years.  tune in tomorrow and see what other surprise i might dig up! :)

Friday, December 27, 2013

3 french hens . . .

today is the 3rd day of christmas, your gift today is 3 french hens.

during the 18th century, large, exotic fowl were brought to england from the orient.  these birds mated with the fowl already there, and it is said that the new breed is the 'french hens" the song and tradition talk about.  white chickens are believed to bring good luck, and hens are said to symbolize motherly devotion.

in the christian aspect of the 12 days of christmas the three french hens symbolize the holy trinity - father, son, and holy spirit.  it is also said to symbolize faith, hope, and charity - the theological virtues.

by the way -- if you are showering your loved ones with these gifts this year -  it will cost $ $27,393 this year -- unless you repeat the gifts as the song suggests.

here is a 3rd day of christmas freebie for you - 12 days of christmas word search .  it's printable!  enjoy!  tune in tomorrow for 4 calling birds!

thanks for stopping by!  happy stamping --


Thursday, December 26, 2013

on the second day of christmas -----

day 2 -  2 turtle doves

doves for centuries have symbolized love and fertility.    venus, the roman goddess of love and beauty, was born of water where doves are often depicted drinking.

doves are believed to mate for life.  today they symbolize devotion, faithfulness and love forever.

the christian symbol of the doves is the Holy Spirit.  the two turtle doves here represent the old and new testament.

stop by tomorrow to learn about the three french hens. :)

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

a look at the 12 days of christmas ---

the 12 days of christmas always intrigued me.  not necessarily the song -- some versions are annoying -- but the concept and it's history.  so i've decided to do some research and writing about them. be sure to check back over the next 12 days and learn more about each day ---

we'll start off with a bit of history on the 12 days of chrismas in general.  the 1st day of christmas is christmas day itself.  the 12 days stretch to january 6 - epiphany.  it dates back to the early 4th century christian church.

the 12 days of chirstmas first appeared in a children's book entitled  "mirth without mischief" in england in 1780.  it appears to be a memory game not a carol.  the first player would recite the verse, and each player would need to recite their verse and all of the previous ones.  if the player missed a verse they would give some sort of food to someone else.  this game became popular at 12th night parties - another tradition.  these parties were held the night of  january 5th (the 12th night).

the song dates back to the 18th century in either england or france..

there are different viewpoints on what the days mean and represent.  i will touch on two versions.

day 1 -  a partridge in a pear tree

folklore says that a young maiden was to walk backwards around a pear tree three times on christmas morning.  when she stopped and looked up into the branches she should see the image of her future husband.

in england, the red-legged partridge was known to sit in pear trees. this bird was not found in england until the french introduced it in 1770.  since the verse is earlier then the time many believe the song originates from france.

the christian symbolism of this first day of christmas the partridge represents jesus christ - our true love.

be sure to stop by tomorrow for day 2! :)

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

a special custom order --

a childhood friend asked if i would design 5 magnets around her favorite bible verses -- thought i'd share them with my readers.  i love how they turned out -- should have made 2 sets so i could keep one ;)

Photo: Spent the afternoon working on a custom order of magnets for a friend.  I LOVE how they turned out, should have made 2 of each to keep for myself! ;)

the verses were printed from the computer onto white card stock.   i masked the words off on each verse with painters tape so the image would appear behind the words.  i used a sponge to color the background with ink colors by SU, then put each on a coordinating paper.

thanks for stopping by!  happy stamping!  see you next time!

Friday, May 10, 2013

some new designs --

coasters, natural stone, tumbled tile, - poppies reverse silhouette,  set of 4 -

i recently went to a rubber stamp and paper show in allentown, and i came home with a few new stamp sets --- i made a few new coaster designs for my etsy shop -- i really like how they turned out.  what do you think?

these are fun  -- poppies.

coasters, natural stone, tumbled tile, - ladybugs and blueberries,  set of 4 -

love the ladybugs too!  these i colored in with a blender pen and stazon.

coasters, natural stone, tumbled tile, - dragonflies,  set of 4 -

and dragonflies!  this came in a set and has a die to cut this one out --- i love the set - bet i'll use it alot!

all of these coaster sets are available in my etsy shop  -- there is a link at the top of this page - and on the right sidebar.

thanks so much for stopping by!  stop by again to see what's happening around the craft table!

happy stamping!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Sunday Spotlight - D'Lites by Dorene

Welcome to the Sunday Spotlight!

I love great smelling candles, and today's spotlight is sure to offer just that --  D'Lites by Dorene.  Dorene's shop offers a candle scent sure to please everyone!  But don't forget to check out the body products too, in many of the same great scents!

Doesn't the fragrances of the month sound great -- orange blossom, and lily of the valley.  great spring scents!
Orange Blossom tea lights - May fragrance of the month
Orange Blossom Tealights
Let's find out more about Dorene, and D'Lites by Dorene

Dorene - tell us about yourself.  Do you have any other hobbies?
It seems I've been creative most of my life. I remember learning to knit and to crochet at six, and I haven't stopped! When my day job ends, I spend a good amount of my time working on my garden, playing with my puppy, and running or doing yoga. Unfortunately, my "boys" do not live with me right now, and I don't cook as much as I'd like to do.
 Tell us about your shop --
My initial motivation to start a business was purely economical. Having my child move on to college meant a loss in income related to child support.  Additionally, my child’s moving on meant I had additional time available.  About the same time, I had started making candles as a hobby and found I had too many to burn myself or to give away. Opportunity presented itself, and I decided to take advantage of it!
I’ve now been in business for two years and have found my creativity for this business has only grown over time! There simply aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything!
D’Lites by Dorene is your source for highly scented, hand poured candles and home fragrances. Candles range from 7 oz and 12 oz container candles, votives, tealights, and fragrance melts, and are complemented by products available in diffuser oils and fragrance sprays. My candles are a custom blend of paraffin and soy waxes. Paraffin is used to hold the strong colors you see and scents you smell. Soy is used to create a product more eco-friendly to our environment. Together, a quality product is created and tested to be the best possible for you and your home. Additionally, many of my fragrances are custom blends from core fragrance oils.
 What are your favorite items and top sellers?
While also create unique gift items such as rose petal soaps, all natural hand & foot balm, body sprays, and pine cone firestarters, my favorite products to produce by far are candles. I've recently started to focus on creating custom blended fragrances which may be familiar, yet unavailable in most retail locations.
My top sellers are tea lights, and my best selling fragrances in 2012 were Lavender, Cinnamon & Balsam, Cranberry Pomegranate, Home for the Holidays, and Stormy Weather.
Here are a few of Dorene's awesome creations ---  clicking on the caption will take you to the listing on Etsy.
Coconut Green Tea 12 oz. candle
Coconut Green Tea 12 oz. candle

Strawberry  Jasmine 12 oz. candle
Strawberry Jasmine 12 oz candle

Blueberry Muffin 12 oz. candle
Blueberry Muffin 12 oz. candle
Indian Healing 12 oz candle
Indian Healing candle 12oz

Key Lime 12 oz. candle
Key Lime candle 12oz

Catch up with Dorene and D'Lites by Dorene here:

Thanks so much for stopping by the Sunday Spotlight! Want your shop featured here? Click here to find the application -- i'd love to check out your shop and feature your great items! 

Be sure to sign up for my newsletter -- click the tab at the top of this page.

hope to see you again -- happy stamping!


Monday, April 29, 2013

a special happy birthday - - -

i know it's been some time since i've posted --  time has a way of getting away from me sometimes ;)

my father-in-law's birthday fell on easter this year - my husband's birthday a week after -- so, we had one big party.

here is the card i made for my FIL ---

i love the color combination --  the white background paper is embossed in the cuttlebug.  i made this so ling ago, i can't really remember the specific names of the colors i used.  i know they are SU colors.  the stamp set is also SU -- that's called 'cupcake'.

i added the fun wire, and a few rhinestones for some sparkle and fun! ;)

thanks for stopping by -- i'll have more for you to check out soon!  promise!

happy stamping!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Sunday Spotlight on Salt City Chains

I'm so excited to be bringing you the first in my series of Sunday Spotlights -- a look at some great Etsy shops!

Lets get right to it -- our first shop is Salt City Chains.  Beck and I are on the CNYetsy team together -- i love her stuff. 

This is one of my favorites -- looking at the intricate work -- hooking the little loops all together - makes my eyes crossed!  Beck makes it look effortless, and so cool.

Chainmaille Statement Necklace - Collar Style - Emerald City - Green and Bright Aluminum

Chainmaille Statement Necklace - Collar Style

Beck, tell us about yourself -- do you have any other hobbies?
I have too many hobbies!! I call myself a “Jill of all trades”. I am a voracious bookworm, and I’ve been prone to checking out up to 20 books at a time recently (I’m reading through the Sookie Stackhouse series right now, but they’re mostly reference books for sewing or jewelry). I dabble in paper crafts and love making origami – especially origami boxes, since they double as storage for my jewelry. I also love cooking and baking, wood working, and I play around in the garden now and then (though I can’t say I have much of a green thumb).
Tell us about your shop, how did you come up with your name?
Salt City Chains was not my first choice – Believe it or not, I found a lot of other cool chainmaille artists by searching names I wanted, but they were already taken. A lot of chainmaillers use medieval style names at times but I wanted something more modern and urban, which is the direction I think my designs tend to lean. Eventually the name I came up with is because I started my shop when I lived in Syracuse – aka the “Salt City”. Its descriptive, without being too obvious.
What is your favorite item to make?
 I’m not actually sure if I have a “buzz item” that I’m known for – Surprisingly the item I’ve sold the most in my etsy shop is my Rosebud Belly Ring. And at shows the most popular would be the “Stepping Stones” bracelet.
Rosebud Belly Ring by Salt City Chains

Stepping Stone Bracelet by Salt City Chains

Here are a few of Beck's awesome creations ---  clicking on the caption will take you to the listing on etsy.

Chainmaille Ball Pendant - Porcupine in Blue and Black

Chainmaille Ball Pendant - Porcupine in Blue and Black

Copper Chainmaille Necklace

Copper Chainmaille Necklace

Chainmaille Pot Scrubber Aluminum Dish Cloth

Chainmaille Pot Scrubber Aluminum Dish Cloth

Chainmaille Box Chain Bracelet

Chainmaille Box Chain Bracelet

Chainmaille Rosebud Pendant with Amethyst

Catch up with Beck and Salt City Chains here:

Thanks so much for stopping by today -- be sure to check out Salt City Chains, and tell Beck you say her on Serenity Lane Designs!

To get your shop featured on Sunday Spotlight, click here for the application form.  I'd love to be able to check out your shop and showcase your stuff!

happy stamping!  hope to see you again soon!


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