The Silver Blade by Sally Gardner

The Silver Blade by Sally Gardner
The Silver Blade by Sally Gardner

The Silver Blade by Sally Gardner is the riveting sequel to The Red Necklace.  The characters continue their stories during the turbulent upheaval of the French Revolution.  Yann Margoza is in France helping aristocrats to escape the country and avoid execution.  Meanwhile, Sidonie de Villeduval, the woman he loves, is in England.  More than anything, Yann and Sido want to build a life together.  But Yann discovers secrets about his past and his identity which cause opposition from Sido's family to marry and Yann must find a way to overcome his past while Sido must choose the direction of her future.  The Silver Blade is a novel for young adults, but there's something for readers of all ages to enjoy.  The Silver Blade is historical fiction filled with captivating action and adventure, it's a love story with romance, and it's a fairy tale with magic and evil villains like Count Kalliovski.  It's often difficult to create a sequel that's as good as the original, but Sally Gardner has succeeded.  The characters are portrayed well, the setting is richly illustrated, and the writing is superb.  This is a book you will want to buy to read again and again!


the-red-necklace-by-sally-gardner


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Easy Way To Cut Corn Off The Cob

Easy Way To Cut Corn Off The Cob
Easy Way To Cut Corn Off The Cob

Where was this great idea when I had a little kid who was missing his two front teeth or a kid who had braces?  Both situations make it really difficult to eat corn on the cob!  I no longer have the little kid (he's in college now!) but I recently had leftover corn on the cob and wanted to use it in another meal.  I remembered seeing this clever idea on Pinterest and realized I had a great opportunity to try it out.  Just put the ear of corn in a bundt pan and cut the corn off the cob with a knife.  The pan keeps the corn cob from moving while you're cutting and the corn falls neatly into the pan.  What a great way to quickly and easily cut corn without a big mess.  Brilliant!


Find many more tips and tricks to make life easier in the DIY gallery
how-to-clean-lamp-shade


Inspired by this pin for easy way to cut corn off the cob.


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Paint A Stenciled Cocktail Tray

Paint A Stenciled Cocktail Tray
Paint A Stenciled Cocktail Tray

This is a sponsored post from FolkArt, Plaid, and Blueprint Social.  I received materials and compensation to create a project.  Finished project, text, and opinions are my own.

I found this tray at a yard sale.  I really had no idea what I was going to do with it, but knew I had to have it because of its pretty shape.  I decided to paint it using FolkArt Stencils & Paints and I love how it turned out!

Wood Cocktail Tray

Here are the materials I used:

 FolkArt Stencil1 in Mum design
FolkArt multi-surface paint in Titanium White and Steel Gray
 FolkArt stencil adhesive
primer
a paint brush

Stencils

First, I gave the tray a coat of primer and let it dry.  Then I painted the tray with one coat of FolkArt Titanium White paint and let it dry.  I love using FolkArt multi-surface paints because they work on many surfaces and the non-toxic formula is water based for easy clean up.

Plaid FolkArt Paint

Next, I applied the stencil adhesive to the back of the stencil.  This is a really important step because the adhesive keeps the stencil from moving while you're painting and ensures that you get nice clean lines on your stenciled design.  I was glad the adhesive was repositionable since I needed to move it a few times to make sure I placed it right in the center of the tray. 

Stencil Adhesive

After I placed the stencil on the tray, I used two coats of FolkArt Steel Gray for the stencil pattern.  After painting, I carefully removed the stencil and allowed the paint to dry.

Plaid FolkArt Paint

That's all there is to it!  FolkArt stencils and paints really make painting projects easy!  Here's the before and after.  I love the shape of the tray and now I love it even more with a new coat of paint and a pretty design.  There's just something really satisfying about updating something that's old and shabby and making it pretty again.

Wood Tray Painted Wood Tray

If you'd like to try the new FolkArt paints and stencils they're available at Michaels.

Paint A Stenciled Cocktail Tray
 

Check out more great ways to use FolkArt stencils.



For more great crafting ideas and inspiration visit Plaid.
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Pin Junkie Pin Party #84

Welcome to The Pin Junkie!  
 I'm on a mission to do the things I pin on Pinterest and try something new every day!
 I'm so glad you're here to party with us!


Here's what I've been up to this week:

Gasp!  I didn't post anything this week.  Folks, I have crafted, cooked, photographed, and blogged like a crazy lady for two years straight and I just got a little bit tired of doing it.  It seems I wasn't the only one who felt that way this week.  Sherry and John, the dynamic duo at my very favorite home DIY blog, Young House Love, dropped a big bombshell on Tuesday and Cheryl at Sew Can Do wrote how she felt about the The Craft Blog Rat Race.  It's such a great article and she certainly vocalized how I felt this week!

Although I wasn't working on any Pinterest projects, I was working behind the scenes helping Mr. Pin Junkie with his project.  I might have mentioned once or twice that while I'm crafting, cooking, and reading my way through Pinterest, Mr. Pin Junkie has his own project that he's working on.  I've been trying to convince him he should share his car restoration in a blog and he finally relented agreed, but only if I set up the blog for him.  So I put a blog template together, he wrote his first post, and we have a brand new baby blog!  We're so proud!

If you're interested in reading about a full restoration of a 1967 Mustang Fastback go here. 
http://67fastbackproject.blogspot.com/

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There were so many great projects shared at last week's party!  Thanks to everyone for sharing your projects, recipes and tips.  I can't wait to see what you will share this week!  But first, take a look at some features from last week's party.


Dulce La Leche Chocolate Chip Brownies
Dulce La Leche Chocolate Chip Brownies
by Jasmine at Chica Chocolatina


stamped-canvas-shoes diy
 Stamped Canvas Shoes 
by Ginger at Gingerly Made


glitter-makeup-trays diy
DIY Glitter Makeup Trays
by Paige at A Dose of Paige


mod-podge-wooden-jewelry-boxes
Mod Podge Wooden Jewelry Boxes
by Camila at Titi Crafty


natural air-freshener diy
Natural Air Freshener
by Natasha The Artisan Life


Pin Junkie Pin Party #83

Welcome to The Pin Junkie!  
 I'm on a mission to do the things I pin on Pinterest and try something new every day!
 I'm so glad you're here to party with us!


Here's what I've been up to this week:

peanut-butter-pork-tenderloin diy-wine-labels chicken-tenders-with-honey mustard sauce girl-with-pearl-earring-by-tracy chevalier

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There were so many great projects shared at last week's party!  Thanks to everyone for sharing your projects, recipes and tips.  I can't wait to see what you will share this week!  But first, take a look at some features from last week's party.

Caramel Apple Funnel Cakes
Caramel Apple Funnel Cakes


DIY Outdoor Checkers Game Table
DIY Outdoor Checkers Game Table
by Ashley at Simply Designing


Chocolate Chip Cookie Sticks
Chocolate Chip Cookie Sticks
by Sharon at What The Fork


Office Makeover
Office Makeover


http://www.vintagezest.com/2013/06/favorite-breakfast-4-banana-oatmeal.html
Banana Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies
by Diane at Vintage Zest

Girl With A Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier

Girl With A Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier

Vermeer's famous painting Girl With A Pearl Earring, often called the Dutch Mona Lisa, is the inspiration for this work of historical fiction by Tracy Chevalier.  The author expertly explores this well known work of art and creatively imagines the story behind it.

Griet, a quiet and introspective sixteen year old girl, has an eye for detail.  Though she cannot read and has no art training, she takes pleasure in arranging items by color and admires paintings in the market.  When her father is injured in an accident, Griet must go to work as a maid for a wealthy family.  Her long days are filled with tedious chores of laundry, helping in the kitchen, and trips to the market.  Her master, Johannes Vermeer has a large family and she is often expected to look after the children while he is painting.  

Always careful in her duties, Griet soon becomes the only person trusted to clean Vermeer's studio.  They soon find themselves sharing a secret world of color, paint, and art.  Though they find a connection through their love of art, they must always be mindful of their roles and the boundaries of master and servant.

Girl With A Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier is full of rich detail describing 17th century life.  If you enjoy historical fiction, I definitely recommend this book.  (I recommend the movie too!) 


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Tulip-fever-by-deborah-moggach



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