Monday, December 19, 2011

Painted Pine Cones, Orange Sugar, and a Cranberry Cocktail

Hi!  I intended to have this post ready last week, but there was a long stretch of dreary, no-sun days and I was unable to get any photography done...but Caighton and I busied ourselves doing various Christmas crafts!

I love to use these mini pine cones for decorating, as well as, table settings.  I have used them before in product shots for the shop.  I think they look so cute in tea cups and make for a unique place card setting that way...

So, for a variation on that, I thought it would be nice to paint some of the pine cones white and place them in my little vintage clay pots for a more Christmas inspired place setting.  Tucking a stamped paper doily below them, keeps the plate clean and allows you a spot to stamp your guest's name.

Caighton and I had a lot of fun painting the pine cones {you can add a dusting of glitter while the paint is still wet for a very pretty effect}...

Next up I made some Orange Sugar...

A perfect gift for someone who loves tea or iced tea, and it is super easy to make.

All you need is the zest of one orange for every cup of sugar you want to the zest and sugar in a food processor and pulse for a minute or two to evenly distribute the zest among the sugar...Easy!  And the smell is heavenly!!

I transferred mine into these adorable canning jars I brought back from one of the kitchen gadget stores I came across on our trip to Paris...I also added one of my dried orange slices to decorate the jar...

Shake the jar once a day for the first week to keep the sugar from clumping.

I used the orange sugar over the weekend to make my Christmas Cranberry Cocktail...

All you do, is thaw some frozen cranberries and then combine them in a bowl with some of the orange sugar. 

Macerate for at least a couple of hours, gently mashing the berries every so often {depending on how many drinks you plan to serve, use about 2 tablespoons of sugar for every 1/2 cup of berries}

Place a scoop of the cranberry/sugar mixture in a champagne glass and fill with sparkling wine...

The bubbles from the wine will make the cranberries float and distribute the sugar.  It's a fun, festive, and not-too-sweet Christmas drink!  Enjoy!

I hope to be back soon with more Christmas projects.  My kids are officially home for Christmas break now :)


p.s.  I wanted to let you know about the amazing Annie Sloan chalk paint giveaway going on over at Christie's blog, Carter's's what you could win ~

2 Fabulous pots of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint

1 tin of Soft Clear Wax

1 tin of Soft Dark Wax

1 Ultimate Wax Brush

1 Glazing Brush

2 Chalk Paint Brushes

1 sheet of Ripple Cloth (for buffing)

1 Color Chart of all 28 Annie Sloan Chalk Paints

The Painted Kitchen Book

Creating the French Look Book

& Quick & Easy Paint Transformations Book

Prize value over $250!!

***Head on over to Carter's Cottage to enter!