Tuesday, May 25, 2010

I Have Finally Made Peace with the Bunnies

We moved into our lovely home on the creek two years ago, and ever since I have been battling bunnies. Don't get me wrong, I love sweet little bunnies. I still get giddy every time I see them hopping along. They are so sweet, except when they are chowing down on my favorite flowering annuals and periannals. Then, they are no longer sweet bunnies, but truly "dagnabbit" rabbits.

I have tried just about everything you can dream up to keep them away. Here is my Top Ten List of Failures:
10. Moth Balls (kept everyone and everything away except the hungry bunnies)
9. Cayenne Pepper (only worked when it was fresh)
8. Rat Poison (I was feeling very desperate when I put this out. Don't worry, they didn't take the bait, and I felt so guilty that I trashed it immediately).
7. More Moth Balls
6. Dog Urine
5. Keeping a Watchful Eye (drove myself crazy)
4. Natural Predators (cats, dogs)
3. Spray Repellants
2. More Moth Balls
1. And, More Moth Balls

After all that, did I give up? No way! I am a serious gardener, and no "dagnabbit" rabbit is going to force me to have a flowerless/herbless/veggieless garden.

So here is what I have found that actually worked:

1. Planting flowers that rabbits don't like. This one has been tough and costly. It's been mainly by trial and error, examining the neighbors yards, and advice from a friend who has dealt with rabbits for many years.

Rabbits don't like:
Knockout Roses
Monkey Grass
Most Shrubs (including nandinia and gardenias)

(I will keep adding to this list as I discover more. Please feel free to leave a comment below if you know of any that I have left off).

2. Use pots for planting vegetables, herbs, and flowers that they do like to eat. If they can't reach 'em, they can't eat'em. I have purchased a large assortment of pots and have done sort of a french style garden mixing veggies, herbs, and flowers. Everything is doing well in these, and they are so pretty around the patio. The pots are also nice because the tender annuals can be moved inside during frosty temperatures.

If you are having trouble with rabbits devouring your garden, I hope you will give these ideas of coexistence a try. I would love to hear how it goes for you and your "dagnabbit" rabbits.

Make Your Own Candy Cake

Oh, how my kids LOVE candy! To them, nothing's better than a cake made entirely out of candy. Lots and lots of candy.

A good friend of mine has been paying big bucks for these, and they are always the hit of the party. My kids and I decided to figure out how to make these ourselves. They are so simple and lots of fun!

Here's how you can make one too.

You will need:
1 5 inch Florist Foam Circle
2 Layer Cake Pans (I used 8 inch and 10 inch circle pans)
14 inch Cardboard Cake Circle
Hot Glue Gun
Hot Glue Sticks
E 6000 Adhesive Glue
Several Large Bags of Individually Wrapped Candies

Step 1:
Run a bead of E6000 glue along the upper rim of the largest cake pan. Glue it to the cardboard cake circle. Do this on the smaller cake pan also, and stack them.

Step 2:
Use the E6000 to glue the Floral Foam to the top. This will be your base for your candy. Let this dry for about 30 minutes.

Step 3:
Hot glue pieces of candy to the cake pans and foam.
See, how easy is that!

I have seen these made with a styrofoam base, but we all know how bad that is for the environment, and it sometimes tears when the kids pull the candy off. So I decided to use real cake pans so that we could use the base over and over again. We did use florist foam for the top layer so that we could stick lollipops or candles on the top. You could also use boxes for your base depending upon the shape that you want.

Hope you enjoy making your own candy cake.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Babushkas, Matryoshkas, Russian Nesting Dolls; Oh So Sweet!

Babushkas, Matryoshkas, Russian Nesting Dolls; how ever you say it, they are just too sweet. And I can't get enough of them.

This website has a wealth of information about the history of Russian Nesting Dolls: http://russian-crafts.com/nesting-dolls/history.html.

Here's my interpretation:

To make these, I combine imported Japanese print fabric from Kokka with a crochet lace ruffle, and hand embroidered detailing.

These are available in sleeveless tank and short sleeve styles.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Introducing Regal Baby Balls

Regal Baby Balls are a new line of baby toys from Regal Cottage. They combine super fluffy, soft vintage chenille with designer fabrics.

Babies love the colors and textures. Moms and Dads love how easy they are to coordinate with other items in baby's nursery.

They come in three sizes: Small (5 in./11 cm) and Medium (6 in./ 14 cm) sizes, and Large (9 in./ 20 cm).

The color possibilities are endless in these; new ones will be added daily. Feel free to contact me with your custom request.


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