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1  Super Easy Peppermint Bark in Dessert by MissingWillow on: November 18, 2014 08:41:50 AM
I make peppermint bark this time of year, it's great to have on hand when company comes to visit and my family always asks for it.  If you buy it already made, it's crazy expensive.  Why not make some yourself?  It only has four ingredients:

Bag of chocolate chips (milk, dark, whatever you like)
Bat of white chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon of peppermint flavoring
6 candy canes, crushed

I start by melting the chocolate in the microwave.  You can also do this over a double boiler but I find the microwave works just fine if you do it in 15 second intervals and keep it stirred.  This gets poured into an 8 by 8 inch pan that's lined with parchment paper.

I only let this set up for about 5 minutes before melting the white chocolate chips the same way.  Once the white chocolate is melted, I stir in the peppermint flavoring and then drop it by spoonfuls on top of the melted chocolate then swirl it all together.  The reason I do it this way is I've found in the past if I wait until the first layer has set up, the bark has a tendency to separate between the two chocolate layers.

The last step is to sprinkle the crushed candy canes on top and push them in gently with your fingers to make sure they set.  Here's a secret... I buy candy canes after Christmas at super sale prices and just keep them in a cabinet until the following year.  They keep really well.  *shhhhh*   Wink

Once the entire pan has solidified, lift the parchment paper out, cut the bark and package for gifts.  Or just eat it.   Cheesy

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2  Re: My very first mini album! in Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General by MissingWillow on: October 30, 2014 11:47:49 AM
I CAN NOT tell you how much I love this!  It just blew me away to see our animals dressed in vintage Halloween gear!!!  I bow to your photoshop skills, coocoosnest.  I love each and every page, here are a few of my favorites.
Our departed and greatly loved dogs Jenna and Milos, who is so handsome in that hat!

Look at this baby chick!

You're amazing, thank you from the bottom of my heart!   Kiss Kiss Kiss
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3  Halloween Kiitchen Towels in Machine Embroidery: Completed Projects by MissingWillow on: October 27, 2014 01:07:41 PM
Two Halloween-themed kitchen towels using awesome Urban Threads designs.  Moonlit Manor and Ghostly Graveyard.  I added the sentiments.   Smiley



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4  Zombie Tote in Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General by MissingWillow on: October 27, 2014 10:02:05 AM
I fell in love with this zombie fabric from Riley Blake and knew I had to make something for coocoosnest with it.  She told me she needed a bag of certain dimensions to carry sheet music to a festival she attends every year so I winged it.  The lining is black spiderweb fabric.

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5  Poisonous Napkins in Machine Embroidery: Completed Projects by MissingWillow on: October 27, 2014 09:55:42 AM
I made these for Knickertwist in the most recent IYP swap.  The pretty poison embroidery files came from Urban Threads (love them!).  I couldn't resist putting poisonous plants on dinner napkins.  The designs include Bloodroot, Deadly Nightshade, Poison Ivy, Hemlock, Hellebore and Wolfsbane. 

Wiping your mouth with this one might cause itching.   Cheesy
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6  Re: IYP 26: So you think you can craft! Gallery in The Swap Gallery by MissingWillow on: October 18, 2014 05:34:36 AM
Hi everyone, I'm back from 3 weeks of vacation.  The first thing I did when I got home was open my package from Knickertwist.  She sent me the most gorgeous box of thoughtful goodies.  I took like a gazillion photos so sit back, grab a cup of tea and be amazed....

Even the card she sent is made of awesome.  I think sharing a bottle of wine with Knickertwist might be on my bucket list.


She sent me Graphic 45 paper stacks and a tag album!  G45 is my favorite paper supplier, and these are all things I didn't have in my ever-expanding stash. 


Gorgeous flowers.  Just gorgeous. 


I can't tell you how excited I was to find some of Knickertwist's handcrafted Christmas ornaments in my box!  The wishing star says "sparkle" and she included one of her cheeky snowballs.  Lucky me!


A tiny frosted container of Christmas Magic.  Smiley  What a sweet little treasure.


She included one of the faerie specimen bottles collected from around Pixie Hill.  I've admired these forever.  The label reads: Cleaning the ducts last week we uncovered several houses.  Cheeky things!


She included a little bench for the faeries in my garden.  I need to craft a tiny garden around it and will make that one of my 2015 project goals.


My first ever domino pendant, and it's Halloween themed.  Halloween is pretty much the only time of year I wear any jewelry besides my wedding ring and I'm thrilled to have a Knickertwist piece to add to my collection.   Smiley


This was a special request.  I am gathering pieces for an altered puzzle and she kindly agreed to complete a piece for me.  I told her it was 'artist's choice' and requested something of her signature style.  Isn't it lovely?!


This blew my socks off.  It's a painting of our goat Summer.  She was a triplet whose momma rejected her at birth so I raised her on the bottle.  She follows me around everywhere even though she's a momma herself now.  This captures her beautifully! 


This little book took my breath away.  I believe it to be a found journal of faeries who obviously live somewhere on our property.  My husband and I were both amazed at all of the details, and laughed at some of the journal entries.  I'm going to include all of the pages and their handwritten notes here.


They evidently included notations of things they find fascinating.


We have a small flock of sheep on our farm, this is of interest to the fairies.  This journal entry reads: "Sheep are a good source of milk and warmth.  Stay on their good side."


Hmmm.... this explains a lot...  "When raiding the pantry, tis better to make many small raids than one large one.  The humans won't suspect a thing."  I believe they've taken notice that I spend a lot of time in my kitchen canning and preserving. 


This page states "The pond is excellent for swimming" and "Stolen inventory: Feed, Grain, Tomatoes, Cheese, Wool"
Our house overlooks a large pond and these are all things readily found on our farm.  And frequently go missing.  Grin


"Flattery will get you far with the chickens" and "For warm fresh eggs be extra flirty with the hens".  So true! There are a few soft chicken feathers that were collected and included with this page. 


This entry reads "IMPORTANT: Beware of anything with horns"  Our fairies are very astute, that's an important rule on any farm!  There's also a note warning "More bad news, Sam the buck goat is back."  We lost our buck last winter and our veterinarian supplied us with a buck from our original herd.  We gave him and his wife goats to get their farm started years ago.  Sam arrived back 'home' a few months ago.  Apparently the fairies have taken notice.  They have also collected a bit of fleece and tucked it in here. 


I think they have taken notice that I like to make cheese.  A lot.


This page notes "Looks like another hard winter.  Thank the gods for that little indoor garden."  I believe we will be sharing our greenhouse bounty with the faeries over the next few months!  There are also a few almanac pages included here. 


This entry amazed me...  it refers to the addition of a new guardian dog puppy we brought home late spring.  She's a great pyrenees named Lizzie Borden and an incredible and slightly blurry photo of her is included here.  "Be wary around the animals.  They attract predators.  On the bright side, critters often get blamed for faerie shenanigans."  "The humans have a new beast.  We must warn the little ones to stay clear of the fluffy thing called Lizzy"  LOL!


An entry dedicated to our garden!  It reads "Despite being told to show restraint, Doogle took all of the bush beans"  and "We must take extra precaution not to be noticed".  Ha!  We had blamed the complete loss of our bean crop on deer!  After losing our bean crop for two years running, we had decided to give them up for good.  Now that we know the faeries have been enjoying them, I think we need to keep planting them after all.   Smiley


My husband found an obsidian egg in our potato patch during harvest this summer(!)  This entry reads: "Disaster.  The obsidian egg is lost.  Crisp was drunk in the potato patch and lost the treasure."


Here's a photo of what he found:   Grin


This page includes an entry stating "Excellent harvest of peanuts"  This cracked us up!  We planted a huge patch of Virginia peanuts this year for the first time (we live in Virginia) and only one plant yielded anything.  This explains it! 

The last page pretty much summarizes the objectives of our small farm.  Grow Your Own Food.


This tiny journal is exquisite as is everything else I received.  It proves that someone is watching us at our daily toils (or at least is reading our blog).   Cheesy  I have wanted to do an IYP swap with Knickertwist forever and am so happy it finally happened.  Thank you so much for the beautiful, amazing, and extremely thoughtful package, Nichola.  I'm so very touched and grateful.   Kiss
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7  Wonky Gorey Quilt in CHALLENGE 102 ENTRIES by MissingWillow on: September 06, 2014 07:16:23 AM
When the fantastic Knickertwist agreed to be my partner for the current Invite Your Partner swap my first emotion was panic, as in what on earth am I going to make her?  Then I remembered she hosted the Edward Gorey swap and I had some Alexander Henry Ghastlies fabric in my stash that is so very Gorey-esque and know that she has pinned a quilt or two in the past so decided on a lap quilt for her. This was my first try at a wonky quilt, I found it lots of fun to do!



Here's a closeup of one of my favorite squares.


And another. 
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8  Re: Mini 13 Days of Halloween Round 6 in The Swap Gallery by MissingWillow on: September 02, 2014 12:20:35 PM
(I will be opening from October 19-31)



DAY 1
Alrighty... I opened my first package today and was absolutely thrilled to find this delightful adjustable candelabra!  It has transparent spooky images that seem to be floating inside of the clear glass balls.  Awesome!  Thank you so much coocoosnest!



DAY 2
A zombie chia pet!  How awesome is this?  And so very 'me'.   Cheesy


DAY 3
Three of the thickest, squishiest, perfect sized crocheted (I think... I'm so very yarn-challenged) pads for our holiday table.  I need these so bad, they will not be stored in early November.  


DAY 4
Practical Magic coasters!  One of my favorite movies ever!
This one shows them on the roof of that gorgeous house at the end of the movie and says "We Owens women have always created a stir"

A photo of Sally that says "Plant lavender for luck and fall in love whenever you can"

Gillian's says "Always throw spilled salt over your left shoulder and Keep rosemary by your garden gate"

Midnight margaritas!!!  "Eye of newt and toe of frog.  Wool of bat and tongue of dog.  Adder's fork and blind-worm's sting.  Barbados lime is just the thing.  Cragged salt like a sailor's stubble.  Flip the switch and Let The Cauldron Bubble.  How Convivial!"  


Aren't they fantastic??

Day 5
Today I opened the most gorgeous framed silhouette of a witch flying in front of a full moon, which is my all time favorite Halloween image!  


DAY 6
Today I was delighted to open this crazy awesome eyeball scarf necklace.  The beaded eyeball is super cool!  This is a craft I wouldn't even know how to begin to do myself.  Seriously!  No clue.

Here's a close-up of the eye.  It looks super realistic!  


DAY 7
A drinking bird, all decked out for Halloween!


DAY 8
Today's package is so much fun!  A gorgeous box filled with Halloween goodies.  I'm going to take the fan with me when I take our farm goods to the farmer's market next Summer.   Smiley

Here's a closer look at the top of the box.  I love the image.  So cool!


DAY 9
BOOK!  I was thrilled when I opened today's package and found Winifred's spell book.  Hocus Pocus is one of my favorite Halloween movies of all time.  I  love this so much!  


What's inside??  A shrine!


This side features Winifred's life potion and three nooses.


And this side has the black flame candle (and spell) and a cute little Binx.  We got a cat a year after Hocus Pocus was released and named him Binx.   Cheesy


DAY 10
A vampire baby in a tiny coffin, so deliciously creepy looking!


Check out those tiny fangs!


DAY 11
I opened an amazing shadowbox full of historical documents related to the 1919 killing of the vampire of Clermont.   Shocked  I love everything about it!

There's a newspaper clipping that describes the loss of the young Bohannon family in a vampire attack.  And one that lauds Mr Robert Parker, whose patented vampire shells were used to kill the beast.  One of the patented bullets (silver tipped and wooden) is included.

A photo of the hunting party and one of Billy James whose ginormous gun was used.  

The case also includes splinters found in the vampire's heart and the fangs which were eventually raffled off .  What a fun, inventive and incredibly crafted piece of art this is!

DAY 12
Let me start by saying I have been bummed that our vacation plans kept me from joining the Halloween Chunky House swap for the first time this year.  So... I can tell you I was happy to see something house-shaped (house-sheeped?) when I opened today's present.  It's our farm!  With zombie sheep!  I collect Halloween chunky houses and have a tiny collection of zombie sheep!  Do you have any idea how thrilled I am???  That's our farm logo and a photo of sheep eating people on our front lawn.


She even zombified a plastic sheep toy and it looks SO realistic.  The spine is visible and intestines are hanging out of it.


The back is awesome, too!  Coocoosnest, you are amazing!  


DAY 13
When I opened today's package, I was thrilled to find a chunky Halloween book!  It's something I've coveted ever since I saw one that loves2experiment made a few years ago.  

When I opened the book my jaw dropped.  There were old timey photos of costumed animals.  But wait a minute.  Those aren't just any animals.  

They're OUR animals!  To say that coocoosnest has been stalking my blog is an understatement, and her talents with photoshop completely blow me away!  

Some of the photos contain dear departed pets, like our cat Gypsy.

And our guardian dog FiFi.  *sniff*











Marsha Marsha Marsha! A fox took her from us this Spring.  I miss her.





Jenna and Jack!

















LOL!



This one of our dear departed border collie Jenna and livestock guardian Milos is my favorite.
















Thank you thank you thank you, coocoosnest from the bottom of my heart for this and all of my wonderful gifts.  You made me cry on Halloween this year, and that's a good thing.   Kiss Kiss Kiss
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9  Re: Halloween in June Gallery in The Swap Gallery by MissingWillow on: July 10, 2014 01:22:16 PM
My box arrived from quaggy today.  I might have mentioned that I collect zombie sheep....   Cheesy  It's the most darling, perfectest, awesomest treasure box! 

Here's a shot of the box, she decorated it with spiders all around. 


The top has the most gorgeous zombie sheep embroidery!  It's the perfect shade of green.


A closeup of the sheep's head.  She used a zipper (I bow to your skills) which opens to show the sheep's brains.  SO Clever!


The box wasn't empty, it's full of fun Halloween extras.  I am going to put that glass tea light holder on display right now.  I don't care that it's July!   Thank you so much, quaggy!  I'm so happy to finally be able to swap with you!
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10  Re: Living Off The Land in Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Completed Projects by MissingWillow on: July 04, 2014 09:54:08 AM
That's a great question, dulcet.  Smiley  This is what we're doing in our retirement.  It keeps us busy!  We did work full time for the first few years when we got started but were only able to handle potted vegetables and a few sheep at the time. 

I would encourage anyone with no space wishing for a garden to consider growing in containers.  Here's our back deck a few years ago, it's full of tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, squash, herbs and citrus. 

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