Author: Addie Parker
•4:58 PM

One of my favorite places to look for inspiration is to the lovely ladies (and gents, I suppose) who post their wares on Etsy. Some days, I'll find a tee shirt embellished with ruffles or a wrap skirt with a little birdie on it. Other days I'll find a painting that would look great on my walls or a set of greeting cards that would be perfect to have on hand.

The eye candy at Etsy is delicious.

So today, I'm happy to share with you a cozy little collection of autumn items. Take a look, then feel free to click on the pictures to visit the Etsy shops and consider taking something home with you! Unless I buy it first. Race ya'.

This $13.50 wreath is so simple. So easy. So casual. So pretty on my front door...

This catchy little pair of earrings will bring a whisper of fall into your style for just $16.

These little shoes pull at my heartstrings. I'd buy them right now (for $17) if I had a little girl to buy them for. Do you?

I'm all about being understated when it comes to holiday decorating. This pumpkin pillow is perfect at only $16.

At $65, this bag is a bit of a splurge, but well worth it. I'd love to carry this on my shoulder this fall!

I'm not usually one for signs and words, but this particular one for $18 is a subtle and pleasant reminder to give thanks not just during this season, but in every moment.

How about you? What are you doing to wrap yourself in cozy-warm colors and give thanks for the beauty of fall?
Author: Addie Parker
•11:21 AM

What happens when you leave a lady alone with a plain gift, a spool of ribbon, and some tissue paper?
{Oh, and make sure she's in a hotel room the night before a wedding with no real resources.}


So what really happened was that we rushed to get out of town on Friday afternoon, drive to the Big City, pick up my husband's tux, and make it to the rehearsal on time.  On the way there, we stopped at a Rite Aid to get a card and a bow for the top of the gift. But Rite Aid's bows were tragically insufficient for the super-fun bird cage and bird wrapping paper that I had used. So I picked out some coordinating tissue paper and ribbon. That evening, after the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner, I set up shop in the hotel room. I realized at that point that I had no tape and no scissors.
That's okay.
I grabbed my husband's pocket knife and went to work.  I pulled out my old homecoming-float-flower-making skills and delighted in creating something beautiful.  The following is a tutorial so that you can duplicate the project when you find yourself in a similar jam (or when you just want to add something whimsical to the top of a gift).

Step 1: Cut your tissue paper down into manageable squares. I wanted large flowers, so I cut each layer of tissue paper into four pieces. They were large. I'd say an 8" by 8" square would be sufficient for a medium-size flower. Use at least six layers of tissue paper for a full flower.

Step 2: Fold up the squares (keeping the layers together) into an accordion. It doesn't have to be exact. It doesn't have to be perfect.

Step 3: Tie a length of ribbon around the center of the accordion. I used probably about 12" pieces of ribbon. Less is fine. More is fine, too.

Step 4: Make sure your ribbon is tight and your knot is secure. The knot will be on the bottom, so it doesn't need to be pretty.

Step 5: Take each layer of tissue, and start GENTLY pulling it toward the center of the flower. Depending on the quality of your tissue paper, it could tear quite easily. So be gentle!

This is what your flower will look like from the bottom.

Keep going. Why would one flower be enough?! I made three.

Step 6: Secure your flowers to the top of the gift. I just tied the ribbon from the back of the flower to the ribbon that was around the box. You could use tape if you're so organized that you have it on hand.

Step 7: Take pictures for all to see. You'll want to blog about it, of course. And you'll definitely want to let me know that you did. : )


Step 8: Proudly march your gift through the reception, and bask in the compliments as you make your way to the gift table.

Step 9: Enjoy the day. What a lovely couple.

See how other creative ladies are expressing themselves at the Creative Cats Friday party at Poppies at Play and DIY Day at A Soft Place to Land.

Author: Addie Parker
•7:33 PM
I have a friend who told me a story. She said that when she was eight years old, her mother came to her with some bad news.
   "Renee, I was doing laundry today, and the washer ate your blankie."
   Bad news, indeed.  Renee was sad. Renee missed her blankie. But Renee got over it.
   She was telling me this story because just that weekend- and we were in ninth grade at this point- she had opened up a closet and found-

her blankie.
Neatly folded on a shelf.

   My mom never did such a thing. And thank you, Mom. What did happen, however, is that I kept my blankie. I kept it close. I have slept with it every night for my whole life. Except that one time when I was six, and we went to Grandma's house. I forgot it, and it was too far away to go back and get it. I didn't get any sleep that night, and the brown pipe-cleaner antennae on the butterflies my grandma had decorated with freaked me out. Then there was the time we visited my sister for the night. I was in college. I forgot it, and it was too far away to go back and get it (yeah, yeah, you've heard that before). Luckily, at that point in my life, I had discovered Tylenol PM, so I made it through the night.
   But other than those two nights, my blankie has seen me through every season of my entire life. All twenty-six years. All eleventy-million tears I've cried.

And it shows.

   My blankie is sadly becoming less of a blankie, and more of a set of strings, held together by sheer will to carry on.
   My mom used to ask me, "What will happen when you get married? You can't bring your blanket into bed with your husband!"
   My reply was simple. "If my husband doesn't want my blanket to sleep with us, then I married the wrong man."
   Apparently, I married the right man because he's just fine with it.

   But what do I do, now? How far do I let it go before there's nothing left of my blanket to tuck into my arm? What do I do with it when I decide (for the blankie's own good, of course) not to sleep with it anymore?
   I am sad. I don't like the idea of giving up this comfort.
   I suppose when that day comes, I will carry on. I will burrow into my husband's shoulder. I will find new independence. I will have one less thing to pack when I go on trips. And I will have one less quirk.
Author: Addie Parker
•10:41 AM
Hi, y'all!

I can be contacted at lifewithalady (at) gmail {dot} com. No spam, please.