Tuesday, 15 June 2021

Shepherd's hut coming along

 I had a rather slow week this week but I did make a little progress on my little shepherd's hut.  But first, I want to show you my lovely vase of peonies.  My DH and I have been gardening for about 45 years and it was only a few years ago when I finally learned the secret of having beautiful cut peony blooms in the house without the danger of having a house full of ants!

I learned that you need to cut the flowers BEFORE they open.  When they are still in tight little balls, but with the colour of the petals showing at the end of the bud, it is easy to swipe away the few ants on the flower at this point.  Then, when you have removed the ants which are clearly visible (no place for them to hide since the buds are still quite tightly closed), you put the blossoms into a vase with lukewarm water (I actually slit the bottom 1" or so of stem to allow for better water absorption), and wait for the beauty to unfold.  It only takes 24 to 48 hours for them to be in full bloom.  Here is my vase just after I cut the buds:

They were fully opened 48 hours later and here are a couple of pictures of them another 2 days after.  I am so enjoying my peonies now that I can have some in the house too!

Now on to the shepherd's hut.  Last week I showed you the way I finished the interior.  With the limited time I had this week I worked on the exterior.  I cut 1/4 inch strips of Bristol board and applied it as siding around all four sides, including using some as trims where the siding met at each corner.  I used a watered-down black paint lightly on the "siding", then dry brushed with grey and a creamy colour called "putty" to make the siding look weathered and aged.  Then I painted and glued on the undercarriage, tow bar, and the axles and wheels.  I did find my wire cutters made a perfect support as the peaked roof fit in between the handles so I could keep the hut upside down for a couple of days to make sure the glue on the wheels was well cured.  I was happy with the end result.

I got busy with other things and didn't return to it for a couple of days but, when I did, I started on the roof.  I had already painted the inside of it and installed the small roof trusses.  I found a small-scale corrugated cardboard piece in my stash and cut it to fit the two roof pieces.  I was going to use a small round dowel as a "ridge piece" but my DH suggested I use another piece of "corrugated metal" instead.  I actually quite liked the look it gave. 

 Once the glue dried on that I again used the runny black paint, followed by dry brushing of "Quaker Grey", then Metallic Silver, then Burnt Umber.  I ended by painting a few places with Leprechaun Green" to look like bits of moss was starting to grow.  I followed that up with placing some glue in some of the green painted spots and sprinkling on some fine green landscaping material to show actual moss.  Again - I am happy with how it turned out.

So, that leaves the hut itself almost finished.  I just have to glue on the steps which I will do when I have the landscaping done so I can get them to fit properly.

As you can see I am trying out positions of the hut and the walls on the landscaping platform to see how I want to position it.  So, next week's post should have the landscaping, and the whole project. completed.  If I were a more dedicated miniaturist it would not have taken me a month to finish this wonderful, tiny little project.  

In closing, I would be remiss if I didn't provide you with Bruce's latest contribution to my blog - another crazy cat lady commentary on the wonderful creatures that are cats!

Have a good week everyone and keep safe!  TTFN!!! - Marilyn

Wednesday, 9 June 2021

Back in the saddle again!

 First I want to thank you all for the best wishes and words of encouragement when I was very much under the weather.  I'm so glad to say I have gotten over the hump and am getting things back to normal.  

Now I would like to show you a little more of the wonderful gift Louise made for my birthday last month.  My new little baby, made by Aleeta Kent from Alberta at Louise's request, has a name!  His name is Pakak.  This is a northern indigenous (Alaskan, Inuit, Eskimo) word which, loosely translated, means "one who gets into everything".  With that cute little face, he just looks like an adorable little imp so it does seem to fit.

Here are some better pictures of the sled itself.  Louise did an amazing job and I will treasure this forever.

This picture below shows the lacing on the side of the sled and the real leather padded seat and back cushion Louise made.  

She included so many details including the textured foot pads on the back of the runners where the sled driver would stand while holding on to the rounded handle at the back.  Isn't it amazing?

I'm such a lucky lady!  Another gift I received was a gift certificate from my son and his family to my friend Liz's miniatures business, Grandpa's Dollhouse.  Using the certificate I ordered two prep tables for future projects I have in mind, plus a few small pieces of jewellery findings which I hope will work for making a couple of 1:24 art deco-style outdoor lights for a project Louise is working on.  I sent Liz a picture of the inspiration we are using for these lights and Liz was able to come up with a couple of globes which should work perfectly.  I think I may have shown you the inspiration picture before but here it is again:

I know I will never be able to get the lamps to look just like this example but it is the art deco feeling we will be going for, not exact replicas.  Here are the tables I purchased from Liz as well as the findings and the globes we will be using for the lamps.  Wish us luck!

The last thing I wanted to show you today is some of the progress on my 1:48 shepherd's hut kit I purchased from Petite Properties.  This has been a lot of fun to put together so far and I look forward to moving ahead with it.  A couple of posts ago I showed you the pieces of the kit as well as the little wall cabinet I had put together from another tiny kit I had purchased at the same time.  I started by cutting very narrow strips of Bristol board, applying them to the floor and painting them with a watered-down burnt umber paint which I immediately wiped off to make it look stained and aged.

 Then I painted and aged the pieces for the inside of the hut as I figured it would be much easier to do this before I put it together.

Next I painted and aged the lamb box that also serves as a crude bed platform inside the hut and started to put the whole thing together.  And look what I found in my "stash"!  After all, the shepherd needs more places to sit inside then just the bed, right?

I was also able to use the little wall cabinet I had made.  It fit perfectly just to the right of the little shelf that came with the kit.  The tiny wood stove on the opposite wall also came with the kit.  I'm loving how this little gem is turning out.

Now I will be moving on to the outside of the hut before I tackle the landscaping of the base for the whole little scene.

I really am enjoying this little scale.  I think everyone should give it a try at least once.  You might be surprised with how easy it really is to do, despite how small it is.

I leave you this week with another of my DH's kitty contributions - because we all need a chuckle now and then,  Until next week, take care and stay safe!  TTFN! - Marilyn

Tuesday, 1 June 2021

I've been missing - not in action!

 It's been a few weeks since I have been able to post, or even to check out all of your wonderful blogs.  At first it was because of other commitments.  The person who I was finally able to pass over the editorship of the Irish Association's newsmagazine, after 10 years of doing it myself, was unfortunately unable to continue with it after putting out three issues.  She still works full time, has two college students living and studying at home, and is taking courses herself towards her Professional Project Management certification so I do understand.  The main problem was that I got it back at the beginning of May and had a print scheduled for May 24th and only 3 articles and a couple of reports that came along with it.  It was then a scramble to find enough material to fill the 48 pages, do the setup and quality control and get it to the printer on time.  So - that kept me away from anything that was not focussed on that work.  Then, a few days before the May 24th deadline, I started to feel ill.  By the day before I was very ill.  By the time I sent it to the printer the next day I was deathly ill.  For 4 days I was completely down and out.  I still didn't eat a thing for another couple of days after that.  I was surviving on Gatorade to try to keep my electrolytes up.  I am still trying to recover.  I find I'm a little weak and not my best when I get up in the morning but by noon I am actually feeling pretty good.  That lasts for a few hours then I have to go for a nap.  Then I'm good for another couple of hours, then things go downhill in the evening and I am forced to go to bed pretty early some nights.  Every day is a little better so I hope I will be 100% soon.

I am so looking forward to going online and catching up with all of your wonderful blogs but please forgive me as it may take a while.

But, in the middle of all this - while I was working hard on the newsmagazine but before I got sick, I had a birthday.  I had a wonderful day because my work kept getting interrupted.  Yay!!!

First, my sister arrived with a lovely birthday card to start my day.  Then, a little later, my dear friend, Louise, arrived with this wonderful birthday present which will find a home in one of my North Pole projects:

Isn't it absolutely perfect?  Don't forget you can click on a picture to enlarge it.  Louise had a friend of ours from Alberta, Aleeta K., who makes wonderful dogs, cats, and other animals, not to mention luggage, and other leather goods, to make the husky dog for her.  Then Louise built the sleigh herself based on a picture of a real life one she saw online.  She cut up an old cashmere scarf and used her printer on it to get the stripes of the Hudson's Bay blanket.  Then she wrapped all those tiny packages.  What an incredibly thoughtful and beautiful gift!  Thank you so much Louise (and Aleeta too, of course!)

Here are some more pics:

After being back to work on the newsmagazine for a little while after Louise's visit, my daughter arrived with a gift from her, my grandson and son-in-law.  I had hinted that I was running out of my favourite dish cloths - her hand-knitted ones, so she brought me 4 new ones which she had sewn together to hide yet another present - something else I had wanted for a long time:

I love these dish cloths.  I don't think I will ever go back to store bought ones.  And that little iron?  It is going to come in very useful when making clothes for the elves.

Well, my apologies, I had wanted to show you the inside of the tiny shepherd's hut because I did get the inside done before everything got on top of me.  Unfortunately I am starting to feel quite bad again, given the time of day and must cut this short for today and get to bed.  I will be back regularly on Tuesday nights I hope because, surely, I will be getting a bit stronger every day.  Next posting I will show the little hut, and also a few things I received in my recent order from my friend, Liz, at Grandpa's Dollhouse.  And, God willing - progress on the landscaping for the Post Office.  Until then, please stay safe and healthy and keep mini-ing! - TTFN - Marilyn

Tuesday, 11 May 2021

My new definition of 'downsizing'

 Hi everyone!  I didn't post last week because I have been working on the landscaping and finishing the interior of the Post office and figured you were getting bored of seeing the slow progress.  I will post about it again when I finish all the building and landscaping and start to make the Post Office worker elves and customers.

In the meantime, I had such a pleasant mini week!  First, my latest issue of Dollhouse and Miniature Scene arrived, then I got two packages in the mail on the same day.  

Several weeks back I was fortunate to win Ricardo's (Mis Minis Libros) prize draw and his package arrived from Spain. Inside I found 3 of his wonderful books which open and are readable (in Spanish of course but that just adds to the allure!).  Also inside was a lovely table he made using marquetry.  He took the table apart so it could be flat packed for mailing which made it so much easier.  I was about to glue it back together but, while admiring the work on the tabletop and base I thought - wouldn't it make a beautiful centrepiece for a floor!  I could install it in my southwest room box then build the rest of the floor around it.  Hmmm, I will leave it for a bit while I think about it.  The work is so lovely I want to find the perfect spot for it, whether I put it back together as a table or use it for a very special centre medallion in the floor.  Either way - I'm so very grateful.. Thank you, Ricardo!

The second package has to do with the title of this post:  My new definition of 'downsizing'.  I have wondered for a long time now what it would be like to build in 1:48 scale.  First of all, just for the challenge, but secondly, if I finish all of the projects I have on the go now in 1:12 scale, there is no way I will have room for them - especially when we sell this house and move into an apartment within the next year.  So - I finally took the plunge and ordered from Petite Properties in England.  Having never made anything in 1:48 scale before, I decided to start with one of their smallest kit - the shepherd's hut.  It came with the base kit for landscaping as well although most of their kits have the building and the base sold separately.  Here is a picture from their website of the kit made up (before landscaping).

I also ordered a small wall hanging cupboard so I could also try out a small piece of furniture to see how I liked working in that scale.  I immediately opened the bag for the little cupboard and got started. 

The instructions were extremely clear and the pieces were cut perfectly and fit together in seconds.  The last part of the instruction was to glue the doors to the front of the cabinet but I stopped and thought about that before I went any further.  First of all, don't I want to at least paint the inside?  Shouldn't there be something inside the cupboard before I glue the doors on?  So, I painted the cabinet and doors and set them aside while I tried to figure out what I could put inside.  Thank heavens for toothpicks and tiny pieces of scrap wood.  This is what it looked like before I put the doors on (please ignore all the little bits of glue that have become visible in these photos.  I will be cleaning those off for sure.)

Here it is with the doors on - again, the messy glue will be removed.  However, I did forget to glue on the teeny door handles.  Will get that done too!

I like it much better with something inside - even though it's just a few little bits that give the illusion of boxes and canisters, at least it's not an empty cupboard.

And, in this picture, you can better see exactly how tiny this cupboard really is.

Yes, it really is that small and yes, it wasn't easy to figure out what to put inside and yes, I loved making it!!!

Next, I opened the packages for the shepherd's hut. I immediately dived in and put together the lamb box and attached it to the base of the hut, as per the instructions which, once again are very clear and include lots of pictures of how to put it together.  The next instruction tells me to attach the side and end walls.  At that point, I once again stepped back and have decided to paint the interior walls, floor, and ceiling before putting it together, then I will finish the outside and build and landscape the base.  

So, tomorrow afternoon is mini day for Louise, Marijke and I so I will work on this little project tomorrow.  So far, what do I think about this 1:48 scale?  I absolutely love it!!!  I can see many more of these little kits in the future.  I hope Petite Properties has a gift certificate option because I know what I will be asking my kids for upcoming birthdays, Christmas, etc.  

In closing for this week, I would be remiss if I didn't include Bruce's contribution for the week.

These would be funny if they didn't capture our cat's behaviour so perfectly!  Or maybe that's EXACTLY why they're funny! Oh well, I love our little Bridie anyway!  Have a great week!  TTFN!! - Marilyn

Tuesday, 27 April 2021

Short post - plus announcement from Blogger

 Hi everyone.  Sorry I didn't post anything last Tuesday.  I have to be honest, what little work I was able to do was not very exciting so I didn't want to bore you with it.  

In the meantime, I did receive a notice from Blogger - which I'm sure many of you did.  Just to let you know, if you are someone who has chosen the "follow by email" option for the blogs you read, Blogger is discontinuing this in July of this year. If I understand things correctly, if you use the regular "follow" that adds new posts to your Reading List, you should be okay.  If I am incorrect, I am sure one of you who is better at this stuff will be able to correct this assumption.  Thanks!

So, this week, I did make a few more geranium heads to finish Louise's window boxes.  I only got 5 of them made for her birthday and she needs a minimum of 8.  To reward her for her patience, I will end up making a total of 10.

I also saw some pictures of how to make little winter toques which were meant to be Christmas tree ornaments so ended up being 3 or 4 inches tall.  The technique they used intrigued me so I wondered if I could make them considerably smaller using the same technique.  This was the result:

I thought it was adorable - and it perfectly fit the head of one of my doll kits, sized for my North Pole elves.

Other than that, I have been putting in a lot of thought on how to hide the last battery pack I have for the North Pole Postal Service.  This one is the largest one I have to hide.  I am thinking that I want to build a pile of snow that will hide the box itself but, I still need to have access to turn the battery pack on and off and to change batteries when needed.  I have finally landed on a solution based on some of Pilar's (Miniaturas En Mi Mundo) incredible landscaping skills. She uses bits of Styrofoam to build up mounds, rocks and such, then covers it with plaster bandage material before finishing off by painting and adding dirt, grass, etc.  I am thinking I could use a similar technique for making snow mounds so am giving it a try.

I think it will work in the end but I still have a lot of work to go.  Hopefully I will have some success to show you next week.

On an entirely different note, I made a recent purchase for which I have been getting a lot of teasing from my DH, Bruce.  Since we have our name on a waiting list for an apartment we have our eye on, I have been worried about how our little Bridie will make out as an indoor cat as she is used to going outside every day and playing in the trees and woods around our house.  So - I went online and found a pet stroller and have been taking her for walks in our local eco-park so she can get used to it.  Here she is on our latest walk with my grandson, Brogan. 

She actually seems to like sitting back and taking in the new sights, sounds and smells as we walk through the trails.  Needless to say, Bruce thinks this is hilarious.  As a result, he has started sending me pictures he finds online from someone who posts as "the crazy cat lady".  I will leave you with the first one he sent me and, hopefully, will be back next Tuesday with that battery box solution completely done!  Until then -stay safe, stay healthy!  TTFN!! - Marilyn

Tuesday, 13 April 2021

At least it's fun!

 That's what I say to myself when I look at the long list of things still left to do for the Postal Service.  I thought I would have more time this week but, as often happens, other things demand my time and take me away from my beloved miniatures!  This week it's trying to prepare a grant application for our Irish Association.  Man the paperwork involved for just a little bit of money!!  It's amazing - and very time consuming!

So, this week will be a short update:

My last entry about the Postal Service showed the light fixture I wanted to use for the back entrance.  However, it was just a bare bulb and I felt it needed a cover over it - one that retained a little industrial look.  So, I took one of those pull tops from a milk carton, cut off the pull tab, and cut a slit in the solid top remaining.  Then I slid it over the arm of the light fixture and used narrow pieces of Bristol board to cover the slit I made and to look like metal framing.  Then I painted the added pieces grey, then silver, then dirtied it up with brown powder.  I like the way it eventually turned out.

As you can see, I also made and added a sign by the back door as well.  I see from the picture I have a tiny bit of red that needs to be touched up with white along the bottom edge.  You always notice these little things AFTER you take the pictures.  *smile*

I also installed the back door but I needed to add door handles and locks to it.  For the outside door handle and the lock I just used pieces of mat board and a piece of copper wire.  I etched the shape of a key hole in the lock portion then painted them both a dark brown.

One of my favourite things was the little doorbell I made for delivery drivers to ring for service.  I used a small gear that looked like a snowflake to me, a bead spacer, and a scrapbooking brad.  Isn't it just the cutest!!  I also am happy with the way it looks with the door handle and lock in place as well.

The last thing I was able to accomplish this week was getting the trim around the back door and building a salt/sand box that is really just there to hide the battery from the light above but I will be putting a rusty bucket and shovel next to it so the workers can spread some on the ice to prevent slipping!

I did lay some sandpaper in the entryway and will paint it black to look like asphalt before dirtying it up with a snow, salt and sand mixture.  It's a busy spot with lots of foot traffic!  I can't have it too pristine, can I?

So - sorry I didn't get more done this week.  I hope I can get back to work on it after I finish this grant application, then get the newsmagazine ready for the publisher, then get the annual report done, then get the......it just never ends!  I think I'm going to come out of retirement and go back to work!  These volunteer activities are killing me!  Hope everyone has a great week!  TTFN!!! - Marilyn

Friday, 2 April 2021

Trash to Treasure Final Reveal - At long last!

 Finally I get to keep one of my promises!  I was busy with other thing yesterday, as I mentioned in the last post, so I set the time aside today to finish my T2T project.  Before I carry on from where we left off on Wednesday, I will repeat the list of 35 items from which I had to choose a minimum of 25 so you can keep an eye out for them as we go through the pictures (plus, I changed my mind and exchanged two items from the list on Wednesday because I couldn't make the darn feathers work!)  Here is the revised list:

1. 4 feathers  - did not use

2. 10 Beads - 6 for the door handles, 2 as decoration in the door pediment, one in the pedestal for the bird bath, and one to make a teapot.

3. 3 cotton balls - I used 1 to provide volume inside the chair seat and back.

4. 10" sq wrapping paper -  did not use

5. Eraser - made a double bird house

6. 5 stir sticks, popsicle sticks or tongue depressors - used long tongue depressors for balcony railing

7. Small box (no side longer than 3") - used top for the frame of the shelf unit and bottom for the shelves

8. 2 stickers - used to look like buckles on the yoga mat

9. 4 bottle caps (any size) - used 1 for the bird bath and 3 for the chair-side table

10. Greeting card - used a small portion of the plain back of a card to make the tea cup and part of the cover for the teapot

11. 6" fun foam sheet - used for the yoga mat and a small birdhouse in the shelving unit.  Used small strips as frame around the mirror/tray (painted it black), used around base of birdbath

12. 6" Felt square - used a small piece for a cushion

13. 6 Toothpicks - used the tops of 2 decorative toothpicks for the drawer handles in the side table and as part of the teapot cover.  Used lower parts for stems for the flowers.  Used 2 others as handles for the garden tools.

14. 2 sheets of paper (8.5 x 11) - used one for the French doors and one for the apartment interior.  I printed a box of fertilizer and some seed packets and leaves to the side of the apartment picture since it didn't take up the whole sheet of paper

15. 1 full sheet of cardstock (any colour) - I used a dark green cut into strips as "siding" on the balcony walls.  Yes, I am aware that this type of siding would be very unusual for downtown Paris but - you work with what you have!

16. 4 Q Tips - used the sticks to support the acetate panels of the balcony railing

17. 3 Thumb Tacks or Push Pins (any type) - used wooden push pins as part of the pedestal for the bird bath.  Used two of the pins I pulled out as perches in the double birdhouse.

18. 6" length of ribbon or lace - used a narrow suede trim as straps around the yoga mat.

19. 2 Toothpaste caps (or any toiletry lid) - top from lip balm: plant pot in shelf unit

20. Small mirror (under 2") - used as a tray for the teapot and cup

21. Tea Bag or coffee grounds - soil in planter and in garden

22. 6" Sq fabric (any print or solid) - penelope cloth for the faux "rattan" chair

 23. 2 Paper or binder clips (any size/type) - used white coated paper clip for the door handles and the teapot handle and spout. Used regular metal paper clip to make tines for the garden cultivator

24. 6 Straight Pins - since I didn't have any floral wire in this list, I cut the straight pins in half to use as stems for the caladium plants in the garden

25. A Napkin/paper towel - used instead of fabric on the seat and back cushions for the chair

26. 2 Straws - used paper straws as uprights for the balcony railing

27. 2 Pipe cleaners - used for the celosia flowers in the plant pot and for the accent tree in the garden

28. 1 Styrofoam or paper 8 oz cup - used to make the barrel chair

29. 1 Lid from yogurt/sour cream container - used to contain the balcony garden

30. 2 nut shells (pistachio, walnut, peanut) - did not use

31. Aluminum foil 2-inch square - used to make the garden trowel

32. 6-inch square of sandpaper - cut into blocks for the wall on either side of the French doors

33. 1 Egg carton - covered the frame around the French doors, used as patio stones, used as a book cover and made flower pots.

34. 6-inch square of foam core - used to build up pediment and door trim, small piece inside book 

35. 5 sequins - used one as part of the top to the teapot.

Bonus supply from stash - piece of acetate for the "glass" in the French doors and in the balcony railing.  Also small piece to simulate water in the birdbath.  So - I used 32 of the 35 items, plus my bonus item.  Here are the rest of the pictures:

I think I mentioned on Wednesday that I used the top of my small box as a framework for a hanging shelf unit, and the bottom of the box for the shelves.  You will see it finished as we move out to the balcony.

On the apartment side, I have added the final touch of paint to the sandpaper blocks of stone.  I am actually quite happy with how these French doors and the whole wall turned out.  I think my daughter will like it (She is getting this box as a gift for something to display in her office).

Stepping out of these doors, we have access to a comfortable little balcony where our little resident can relax and enjoy the sights and sounds of downtown Paris.

On the left wall is the shelving unit.  It is easy to see she is into gardening, even though she hasn't much room.  The book on the shelf, "Gardens Galore", provides her with lots of inspiration for her tiny balcony garden.  She has plenty of extra pots, a small box of fertilizer, some packets of seeds, and a couple of hand tools.

I used the ends of two decorative toothpicks for the handles of the garden tools, pieces of a regular paper clip for the tines of the hand cultivator, and for the garden trowel, I folded the 2" square of tinfoil several times to make it thick enough, then cut it into the shape for the trowel.  The little celosia plant on the top of the cabinet is made with a small piece of toothpick, some yellow/orange pipe cleaner, and paper leaves and is "planted" in the top of a lip balm stick filled with glue and topped with a blend of dried tea and coffee grounds.  I also made another wee birdhouse with a tiny leftover piece of fun foam because I wanted to be able to bring the yellow into a few different areas of the scene.

On the right hand wall is the larger birdhouse - built for two feathered families.

Under the shelf unit, our Parisian apartment owner has a comfy little barrel chair (made with a Styrofoam cup. some penelope cloth covering, cushions stuffed with parts of a cotton ball and covered in the top layer of a paper napkin).  She also has a small cushion made from felt for a little extra comfort.  I see she has her teacup and teapot ready to go - but the cup is empty.  Has she just finished a little tea break or is she just starting?  The teapot is made from a metal bead painted yellow, with small pieces from a white vinyl-coated paper clip for a handle and spout, and a circle cut from the back of a greeting card and topped with a yellow-painted sequin and the tip of a decorative toothpick as the top.  The cup is a small piece cut from one of my paper drinking straws and the handle is a tiny scrap of heavy card sliced from the leftovers of the box used for the shelving unit.  The tray is a small mirror framed with a teeny strip of fun foam, painted black.

Next to the chair we have the side table made from 3 bottle caps and  pieces of decorative toothpicks for the drawer handles.

You can see the Paris street scene through the "glass" panels of the modern railing I made from slices of paper drinking straw, 1/4" wide strips of tongue depressors and pieces of Q-tips.  I love the traditional iron railings you would normally see on a Paris balcony but thought they would block the street scene so opted for modern.  (okay, truth be told - I was too lazy to try to figure out how to make an ornate one given the limitation we had with materials!)

In the tiny balcony garden, our owner has managed to fit in a birdbath - made with the top of an Advil bottle, a bead, 3 wooden push pins (pins removed and used for birdhouse perches), and a base of foam cord wrapped in fun foam.  I see we must be getting into fall as there is a fallen maple leaf floating in the bird bath.

Also in the wee garden is a small decorative tree (made with a fluffy pipe cleaner coiled into a tree shape then, using my fingers dipped in clear gel glue, I spiked the fluff to make it look more like an evergreen tree and less like a cone of green fluff.  Below the birdbath are a couple of caladium plants.  I printed the leaves on the space left over beside the picture of the apartment interior and used pieces of straight pins in place of floral wire to stick them in small pieces of foam core covered in tea/coffee grounds.

And so, dear friends, I thank you for your patience as we near the end of the Trash to Treasure Challenge.  I am sure Maureen H. from Edmonton will give us an update on her blog (St. Albert Mini) of her club's official entries once they are all revealed after April 6th.  Marijke, Louise and I did the challenge just for the fun of it since we are not part of Maureen's club - being as how we are on opposite sides of the country from each other! *smile*

Here are some overview pictures of my project:

I now have my answer about the empty tea cup - she has just finished her little break and now she has gathered up her yoga mat and is about to head out to get some exercise.

And so, dear friends we close the book on my Trash to Treasure Challenge.  

Since you have heard from me three times this week, I will be skipping my regular Tuesday night posting this coming week.  When you next hear from me, on Tuesday, April 13th, I will hopefully be getting close to the end of the North Pole Postal Service. Until then, have a wonderful Easter and stay safe and healthy!  Big hugs to all of you. TTFN!! - Marilyn