I spent a lovely weekend at Lake Allatoona.  We had another crafting weekend with the same people as the Fourth of July DIY Weekend.  This time we made seven crafts for fall and Christmas.


It rained and rained and rained and rained and rained and rained and rained and rained and rained and rained and rained and rained.  Get the idea?  So, it was a perfect weekend to stay inside, wake up to a delicious make-your-own quiche bar, and then start crafting.


Gina fixed topping ahead of time and we used a Breville Pie Maker to make individual quiches.  Genius!DSCF4494

Mine was on the top right.  I had broccoli, onions, mushrooms, and cheese.DSCF4495

Just close it up and cook until the ready light comes on.DSCF4496

We added fruit and it was a perfect breakfast.DSCF4497

Ready for some craft ideas?  Here we go.  First up was a food craft of bread dipping oil.

Bread Dipping Oil

4 cups olive oil

2 tablespoons dried basil

2 tablespoons dried parsley

2 tablespoons garlic powder

2 teaspoons dried thyme

2 teaspoons dried oregano

2 teaspoons ground black pepper

1 teaspoon crushed rosemary

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper, if desired (I left it out)

Combine dried ingredients and place in bottle.  Add olive oil and shake to blend.  Serve with shaved Parmesan cheese and/or balsamic vinegar.  Shake oil before serving.


The oil was a quick and easy craft so we jumped right into the Snowman Hot Chocolate Tower. This craft was also quick and had a cute factor to it, too.


Simple to make.  Get three Ball or Mason jars.  Use black spray paint to paint the jar rims. Note that the jar on the bottom looks the same size but it is really larger than the other two. The top two jars are the same size.

The bottom jar is filled with Ghirardelli Double Hot Chocolate.  The middle jar is filled with peppermints.  The adorable belt is a piece of ribbon with a soda pop top belt.  Too cute. The top jar has marshmallows.  The scarf is a piece of ribbon fringed on the ends. Cut a “doughnut” of felt for the hat and use puffy paint for the face.


Let your paint dry!  Do as I say, not as I do.  I picked up little Snowy too quickly and smeared him.  However, I began to be fond of his deformities and left him to dry.  I love his little carotty mustache and his happy smile.

Hot chocolate is a favorite of mine.  And I really love lots and lots of marshmallows in my hot chocolate so I’m sure I will empty out his little puffy brains in a hurry. Sorry Snowy.

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Craft number three took us back to nature with this sweet pinecone garland.  Diane brought both plain and painted pinecones for us to string on jute.  We painted some of the plain ones gold and then added eye screws to all.  Next we strung them on the cording and added accents of silver ribbon.


Diane has fingers of steel. Those eye screws were easy peasy for her vice-like grip. Not so much for the rest of us.


Cabana Boy made a quick trip through the room.  More about him later.


Gorgeous on the beautiful fireplace mantel!


Craft number 4 was also a nature craft.  We made Birdseed Rings for our feathered friends’ Christmas brunch.


Birdseed Ring

4 cups birdseed

1 cup water

1  1/2 packages dry unflavored gelatin

1/3 mounded cup cornstarch

3 tablespoons corn syrup

Lightly grease an angel food cake pan or a bundt pan.  Place birdseed in a large mixing bowl.  In a saucepan add the water, gelatin, cornstarch and corn syrup.  Heat until thickened and then add to the birdseed.  Mix well. Use a spatula to press the birdseed into the pan.  Refrigerate at least 2 hours before removing from the pan and allow to dry 24 hours before inviting birds to your feast!



Both shapes were pretty. I didn’t really have a preference.  I liked the clean lines of the angel food pan but I also loved the fancy shape from the bundt pan, too.


We took a quick lunch break on paper plates.  No time to wash dishes.  We had three more crafts to make.  Lunch was chicken salad, croissants, and broccolini salad. Cookies and Ghirardelli chocolate for dessert.


Sorry, no crafts for dogs this time.  Next time I’ll make some doggie bones. Isn’t Zoe beautiful?


Craft number five was a succulent garden.  I purchased the items for this craft from Joanne’s silk plant section.  Each craft used three plants.

Place a foam disk in the bottom of a terra cotta pot.  Cover foam with moss and place three fake succulent plants in the pot.  Tie a piece of ribbon around the pot and glue on a silver medallion, if desired.


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Time out to get the pork ready for smoking.  Gina showed the best technique for rubbing the butt! (Actually it was pork loin but that wasn’t as fun to say.) Cabana Boy Steve smoked the pork all afternoon for our tasty dinner.  Can’t wait!


The fairies visited and left us some lights to use in the next craft.  Gina brought some jars and jute to make these fun fairy lights. Use double stick tape to place the battery pack in the top of the jar lid.  Place the lights in side and screw on the lid.  Wrap the jar with jute and tie on a longer piece to hang the lantern.


I’m going to hang mine in my screened porch. I think I will hang a large and small jar at each post.


Pretty in the day and even prettier in the dark.DSCF4537

Our last craft involved wood burning and cutting boards.  So cool….


Gina brought burning tools and alphabet sets to show us how to create these cutting boards.  We had fun coming up with phrases to burn into our boards.   We used both sides to make holiday and regular boards. This photo shows two boards on top of each other. The different sizes were interesting together.


Finally, Cabana Boy brought in the smoked pork. DELICIOUS.


We enjoyed  dinner of pork, bourbon barbecue sauce, Hawaiian rolls, potato chips, and roasted asparagus with garlic.  This is a house specialty for Gina and Steve.  Thank you both for your warm hospitality for the weekend.


We collapsed onto the sofas in front of the fireplace and planned our next get together.

I can’t wait.

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2 Responses to Craftopia

  1. Barbara Murphy November 11, 2015 at 4:01 pm #

    I really liked all these ideas. It’s so much fun reading Frankly Southern.

  2. Gina November 11, 2015 at 8:15 pm #

    Love, love, love all my crafts, but love you more Julie for starting this new tradition! What fun we had! So looking forward to the next time!

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