Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Look for the silver lining ...

One of my very favorite songs seems like the perfect one to share as we greet the New Year.

"Look for The Silver Lining"

Please don't be offended if I preach to you awhile,
Tears are out of place in eyes that were meant to smile.
There's a way to make your very biggest troubles small,
Here's the happy secret of it all.

Look for the silver lining
When e'er a cloud appears in the blue.
Remember some where the sun is shining,
And so the right thing to do,
Is make it shine for you.

A heart, full of joy and gladness,
Will always banish sadness and strife.
So always look for the silver lining,
And try to find the sunny side of life.

As I wash my dishes, I'll be following your plan,
Till I see the brightness in ev'ry pot and pan.
I am sure your point of view will ease the daily grind,
So I keep repeating in my mind.

Look for the silver lining
When e'er a cloud appears in the blue.
Remember some where the sun is shining,
And so the right thing to do,
Is make it shine for you.

A heart, full of joy and gladness,
Will always banish sadness and strife.
So always look for the silver lining,
And try to find the sunny side of life.

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Back in the land of the living!

It is so nice to be back! We had a series of snow storms come through and really bring everything to a screeching halt! Christmas Day was spent in the dark with no power and snow coming down like crazy!

My poor little Japanese maple nearly disappeared so I had to keep brushing the snow off the top!

All in all, it was a nice quiet Christmas with much time spent getting caught up on inventory and organizing everything for my shop, reading, knitting and relaxing. Not much else to do when the power's out!

I am so grateful to all of my customers who were so patient with me - it was impossible to get out, let alone mail orders out! Because my customers are so important to me, I'd like to offer a special discount... enter code SNOW08 at checkout and you'll receive 50% off any one item when you place your order at Flowering Tree Botanicals by 1/31/2009.

Here's wishing you and yours a VERY happy, healthy and prosperous New Year!


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Featured Guest - Dozen Flours

I recently stumbled across another blog and I have to share it with you all. Julia at "Dozen Flours" has got to be one of the most talented ladies I have ever "met"! Trust me - you have got to go take a look! Just look at her little snowman cupcakes!

Please swing on over and say "hi" to Julia and tell her that I sent you!

I thought I should also let you all know that my special for Christmas Eve is FREE FIRST CLASS SHIPPING for anything in my Etsy shop! One day only!

I'll keep this posting short but want to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.


Saturday, December 20, 2008

Storm Preparations ...

We're in for a nasty storm tonight/tomorrow so today was all about storm preparations. I got up early, dug out the truck and off I went! At the grocery store, I picked up canned soups and fruit and some packets of apple cinnamon oatmeal. I think I got the very last "D" batteries in all of Woodinville too!

My Mum (aka "LizzieJane") would be proud of me ... I picked up five giant Hershey's chocolate bars too.

My street lost power a couple days ago and during that time, I had a really exciting revelation! It doesn't take electricity to make bath bombs! This is what I made:

Mmmmm... the scent of lemon is so lovely!

I also made these rose ones:

Both are available in my shop - just $10 for four!

I thought I'd also share this lovely photo of Panda - she got a nice new yellow Cuddle Sack bed - a fundraising item available from It's Meow or Never Animal Rescue & Sanctuary. She won't get out of it - I had a good giggle today -- I think she looks like she's sleeping in a giant banana peel!

Happy holidays!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Homemade Lavender Lemon Biscotti

Mmm... what do you make when you've got nearly 25 pounds of culinary lavender on hand? Lavender Lemon Biscotti!

First the dry ingredients come together .. flour, sugar, nuts, lavender, baking powder...

Then the liquid ingredients are added to the dry, forming a dough:

This is a photo of the biscotti, halfway through baking .. looks promising and the kitchen smells *delicious*!

Here's the finished product. I decided to dip them into a little dark chocolate to make them extra special. They are *delicious*!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Two New Teas!

I am so excited - I have two new teas in my shop and they are DELICIOUS!

The first is "Tropicana":

To say this tea is delicious is an absolute understatement.

A smooth black tea which is infused with thistle flower petals, marigold petals, cornflower petals, rose petals and natural tropical fruit flavorings. This one makes you go "mmmmm" even before you brew it.

Imported from Germany, this tea serves well both hot and iced.

The second is "Pomegranate Green Tea":

This tea has the most wonderful, fruity aroma! Sweet berry pomegranate flavor over smooth mellow green sencha cup.

Just $6 for a quarter pound ... treat yourself to a nice, hot cuppa!


Saturday, December 13, 2008

Big Sale! White Elephant and Time for Baking!

Firstly, I'm doing a Buy One, Get One Half Off sale in my Etsy shop today! Woohoo!!

I've got a White Elephant at work next week so some lucky person is going to receive something lovely from my shop. I still haven't decided if it will be some of these:

Or these:

Or perhaps this:

We're also doing a cookie swap and I have decided to give this recipe from Napa Valley Lavender Company a whirl:

Lavender Biscotti

Equipment needed: Cookie sheets, 1 small and 1 large mixing bowl, whisk or hand beater

2 c All-purpose flour
2 tsp Baking powder
¼ tsp Salt
½ c Coarsely chopped macadamia nuts
2 Lg Eggs
½ C Granulated sugar
3 tsp Dried lavender flowers
¼ c Melted butter
2 Tb Honey
1 Tb Lemon rind
Juice of 1 lemon
3 Tb Milk
½ tsp Vanilla or lemon extract

Optional: melted chocolate for dipping

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In large bowl combine all dry ingredients, lavender and nuts. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, sugar, butter, honey, lemon, lemon rind, milk, and vanilla (may use beater on slow instead of the whisk). Add to flour mixture. Stir well. Dough will be soft and sticky.

Spoon onto cookie sheet into 2 "log" shapes: approximately 2 " wide.

Bake 35 minutes until golden. Remove from oven. Cool 10 minutes. Place on board, cut into 1" wide slices. Place on sides on cookie sheets.

Return to oven cook 20 minutes longer, turning once. Cool on rack.

Optional to dip or decorate with melted chocolate. Yield: 2 dozen.

I hope you're all enjoying the holiday festivities!


Monday, December 8, 2008

Holiday Room - Fundraiser for It's Meow or Never Animal Rescue & Sanctuary!

It's here! The holiday room is back!

For those of you that don't know, I have been on the Board of Directors for It's Meow or Never Animal Rescue & Sanctuary for nearly four years. Last year, we created a "virtual holiday room" and raised money for the animals at our sanctuary.

I'm really excited to have just finished getting the room ready again and I hope you'll take a look. Please consider donating a "virtual item" .. when you donate for an item, it will magically appear shortly after. The more donations we receive, the more fantastic the room looks.

Here's the link:

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Sunday Window Shopping at Artfire!

Have you heard of Artfire?

Similar to Etsy, Artfire is an online community of crafters and artisans who sell their wares online. I recently opened an account and LOVE IT! There are two plans for sellers - a free account which allows you to sell up to ten items for NO FEES or a pay account which is $20 per month for unlimited listings. There are no listing fees and they do not take a percent of sales.

If you're interested in signing up, they're doing a promotion and giving 5,000 accounts at $7 per month (instead of $20 per month). Here's the link:

What's for sale on Artfire, you ask? Take a look at these lovely items:

This adorable felt watch is great for little boys! Just look at the detail!

This felt fruit looks better than the real thing!

These felt tools are so adorable!

Give Artfire a try .. whether you join to shop or sign up for a seller's account, I think Artfire is the next best thing for crafters!

Happy Sunday!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Craft Fair, A Cuddle and a Good Movie

Today, I participated in a Holiday Bazaar at Skyline High School in Samammish. Sales were really slow so it was a bit disappointed. I took this picture of my booth to share with everyone:

After getting home and unloading my truck, I took a hot, relaxing bath and got into bed to cuddle with Panda. We decided that we'd watch a movie and this is what we chose:

She's particularly fond of black and white movies, for obvious reasons.

We're going Sunday window shopping to a new online shopping place for handmade items. I'm really excited to share this new web site with you - check back tomorrow!


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Field Trip: Wonderful Goodies at Artisan Collection

Ohh loyal readers .. you're in for a treat. Today, I'm showcasing a very lovely shop in Duvall, Washington called "Artisan Creations". You can find it on Main Street, just across from the Woodinville / Duvall Bridge, right next to Tuxedo's Antiques.

The store owner, Kristin was good enough to share some of these gorgeous photos to entice us all to come shop with her:

If you're looking for unique gift items this holiday season, get in your car and drive to scenic and charming Duvall to visit Artisan Collection. You'll get a big hug and kiss from the recipient and good karma for shopping and supporting a local business! And hey - tell Kristin you learned about her shop from The Ladyblog for an extra helping of good karma!


Monday, December 1, 2008

I am addicted...

I can't stop making them. Someone send help.

Lime Bombs!

Mmm... it smells like fresh squeezed lime in my house today! Just check out how nicely these babies turned out:

Many of my customers have been really craving citrus bath products of late. They've asked for lime, lemon, orange and grapefruit. I'm not sure if they're fearful of scurvy or if this is just a bath product trend but if there's a demand, I listen!

Happy Monday and Happy December!!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Sunday Window Shopping ... with a friend!

I met a new friend today during Sunday window shopping. His name is "Steve" and he comes from MadebyMarta's shop on Etsy:

I asked Steve if his favorite colors were black and white and he replied in a very deep voice, "No, I like red, thanks!" We were on our way:

First, Steve spotted this lovely stocking by RikRak:

I pointed out these gorgeous Juice Berry earrings by saralagace

We started to get a bit peckish so we stopped and had some of SugarCake's Chocolate Covered Strawberries. They were delicious!

When Steve and I got home, we decided to make some Glitter Cards. We found the instructions over at Kids Craft Weekly and thought they looked like great fun.

These cards are messy to make but the effect is spectacular and I guarantee the kids will love it! They do cover the recipient in glitter when they open the envelope but I don't necessarily see this as a bad thing!

You will need:

• blank cards
• kid's pvc glue
• a couple of different colours of glitter
• christmas cookie cutters


1. Pour glue into a small container or tray until the glue is about 3mm deep. Make sure that your containers is large enough to accommodate the cookie cutters.

2. Dip a cookie cutter in glue and then use it to make a glue print on the blank card. For best results, leave the cutter in place on the card for about three seconds to allow for the glue to drip down onto the card. Repeat until you have made all the glue prints that you want for that particular card.

3. Sprinkle different colours of glitter on top of the glue prints, making sure to cover all of the glue marks. Then shake the glitter off into a tray and allow card to dry.

Happy Sunday!
Layla (and Steve)

Saturday, November 29, 2008

One Down, Two to Go!

Whew! Just got home from a craft fair at the American Legion in Bothell. I am *pooped*!

I didn't do quite as well as I had hoped but I had really good company. The lady in the booth next to me must have been in her 80's and we knitted and had a great time chatting throughout the day. She was showing me photos of her kids, grandkids and yes, great grandkids when a voice spoke over a loud speaker:

"Fresh hot Krispy Kreme donuts have just arrived..."

I turned back to resume my conversation with my booth neighbor and she had vanished. Moments later, she returned with a fresh, hot donut and a cup of coffee and replied, "Sorry, they go quick here." I only hope I'm that nimble when I'm 80!

Here's a photo of my booth today. I had some beautiful new additions with me - some of LizzieJane's fine work! Her fragrant sachets were *very* popular!

Next up, December 3rd at Premera Blue Cross. That's my favorite craft fair of all!


Monday, November 24, 2008

Feeling Snacky?

I'm feeling so snacky this evening and these all look so delicious! Why can't Etsy be a 24 hour store here in Woodinville??

Plain Vanilla Caramels from DarcysHome

Sweetie Pies Sample Pack by Sweetie Pies Delights

Rocky Road Caramel Apple from DoubleDippedSweets

*Sigh* ... so, so delicious ...

Sunday, November 23, 2008

New Etsy Helper

I'm doing quite well on Etsy so it was time to bring on some help. His English is atrocious and he doesn't quite understand the concept of photography but he's very sweet and he's a good little companion.

"Hi, whatcha doin'?"

"Can I help?"

"Oh, that's pretty!"

Needless to say, we only got 12 ornaments listed today. The Warm Honey is a favorite of Hunter and mine.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Kitty & the Roomba

I don't know why this movie affected me so much but it did. My tummy actually hurts.

It wasn't the little "kitty body jerk" each time the Roomba changed directions. It probably wasn't even the tail dragging along behind the device. I think it was something far more deep-seeded.

I never had one when I was a kid and I thought the Sit n' Spin was the greatest toy ever made. Some 25 years later, my parents presented me with one at Christmas. We're square now and all things are good in the world.

Sit n' spin, little kitty ... sit n' spin....

Daily Etsy Specials Begin!

Beginning today and running through end of year, I'm doing a different special offer in my Etsy shop EVERY DAY!

Be sure to check the banner in my Etsy shop to see what the daily special is. And I have to tell you - there are some *REALLY* good ones coming up. You won't be disappointed!

Psst .. if you follow my blog every day, I might not be able to contain myself and I may tell you what the next day's special is in advance! I mean, I might even do something crazy and show you the next day's banner!

Happy crafting everyone!


Friday, November 21, 2008

Painted Toast!

Looking for a fun, inexpensive and delicious project do to with your kids this weekend? Look no further! Here's a great project idea I found at

1) Place several drops of food color into each cup. Then pour a few tablespoons of milk into each cup. I used about 8 drops per color. The more color you use, the more vivid your results will be.

2) Apply the “milk paint” on the toast using clean small paint brushes. Let your kids create any design they desire, but don't soak the bread too much.

3) When the painting is complete, lightly toast the bread. You can add butter or eat plain. We also sprinkled a little white sugar on a few pieces thinking it would add a glittery effect. Although that didn’t work, it made a nice sweet treat!

If you try this project, send your photos to me! I'd love to feature them!


Monday, November 17, 2008

Bath Bomb Success!

Third time truly is a charm!

I finally made three batches of bath bombs (lemon, orange, and mint) that didn't turn out like bath pancakes and for that, I am truly grateful! Take a look:

On my way home, I got a surprise phone call - I got in to the November 29th holiday bazaar in Bothell!! I'm so excited that I actually squealed when I was talking to the organizer.

Oh my gosh - do you think I'll be ready in time? There's so much to do! I have to make more lavender dryer bags and catnip toys and omg, I hope my soap is ready in time! And signs .. I need to remake my signs ..........................

How To Make Simmering Potpourri

Materials: cloves, cinnamon sticks, orange peel ribbons and star anise.

1. To make the potpourri you need to mix equal amounts of cloves, cinnamon sticks and star anise. Variations include adding bay leaves, orange peel ribbons, dried orange and lemon peel.

2. Fill a glass jar container with the potpourri with a cork top so it stays fresh. Or place into muslin bags as gifts. Use raffia to decorate the bottle and the muslin bags.

Simmering instructions:

-Place in a shallow pan and cover with water.
-Simmer on low and refill water as necessary.

Make a few of these and keep them on hand this holiday season - they make lovely "emergency" gifts!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Sunday Window Shopping

On Sunday mornings, I like to surf around and do a little Etsy window shopping. Here's what I found today that I really like:

Red and Yellow Poppies - $28 by "infinifleurs"

Pearly Lunar Eclipse - $22 by "birdsnbees"

2 Felt Trees x Button dipped - $14.20 by "SnowFish"

Little Piggy Ornament - $15 by "LizzieJane"

Today, I'm off to do inventory for all of my herbs and spices - I've sold so much on Etsy so fast that I need to get more stock in! Cloves and fragrance oils are the hot items at the moment - definitely need to stock up on those!

Happy Sunday!