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October 2010
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December 2010

November 2010

Enjoying home ... for the holidays!

Well ... I truly wish this was MY house ... but it's not ... it's the Bachman's Holiday Ideas House ... but I wish it was mine. I said that already, didn't I. That's cuz it's true. If you live in the Twin Cities, this place is the best five buck entertainment you'll find anywhere this season!

The Holiday House was as exciting as the Fall House. One great idea after another. Don't they ever run out of them? Apparently not.




It's all in the details. Spools of string ... how easy is this? I bet you could spell anything out if you had enough of them. I betchya I have a few laying around. Hmmmm ...

Finally ... an idea for all of the insulators that Bob insists on buying.

See this Bob? Another idea. Think he's reading? Probably hiding.

Who doesn't have tea strainers in their stash? And I loved how they heaped apples or ornaments at the base of their plants throughout the house. Every inch is decorated.

The cool thing about the porch is that there are windows on all three sides. It gave them opportunities to hang wreaths or ornaments ... if you didn't feel welcomed while you walked around outside, you did the second you stepped into the porch.


Even the ceiling was decorated. Oh ... and the smell! Imagine a forest of evergreens mixed with spices ... it's stuck in my head. Delightful!!

But back outside ... I know so many of you think we're all crazy for living in Minnesota but just to show you we make the best of things ... you should know that all of us have a brick fireplace in our backyards. Standard. Ok fine. That's not true ... but what is true is there are so many more things to see at the Bachman's house that I know you'll keep coming back until I've exhausted my entire picture file!


A delightful surprise!

Do you ever have one of those days where you just follow your instincts and something sort of magical happens? That was my day last week Friday when I came across Christmas at the Cottage! I had just completed two days of meetings across the border in Hudson WI ... had a tiny bit of time to get back to the store so I decided to take the long way back.

I headed north out of Hudson so that I could drive across the Stillwater bridge but just after I left town, I came across a sign along the edge of the road for this sale. It had 'vintage' and 'antiques' in the description so I turned at the last minute and followed the signs to the pink house on the north side of Lake Mallileau.



The courtyard between the cottage and the house was decorated with one interesting touch of whimsy after another. I had to make a choice ... porch first or the cottage. The porch won.


I pulled out my phone and quick called my friend Janice cuz I knew she was still in downtown Hudson. She was there in a flash and then I had a pal to squeal over all the cool stuff with!



After picking up a few perfect items, we headed back across the courtyard ... trying to keep our heads from spinning off looking at everything ... and then made our way into the cottage.

The place was packed from ceiling to floor with one beautiful thing after another!


And then I spotted a head like Janice has ... and something else that was intriguing!

Turns out the owner of the cottage and the sale is Jan Dolphin and she has written a book called Paris From the Heart.  It's actually a series of beautifully illustrated small books about Paris that are packed into a decorative cardboard sleeve. So pretty! I found out that Jan will do book signings ... so on December 11th she'll be in our Cottage signing her book from 11 to 2 during Winter Fest. So excited about that!! You'll have to come and meet her and get an autographed book.

And in between making the arrangements my eyes were trying to take in everything that was there. It was packed ... but you can see for yourself! The sale runs November 26-28 and December 3-4 ... 10 to 6 on Friday and Saturday and 12 to 5 on Sunday at 704 Riverside Drive No in Hudson. Follow the signs off of WI-35.


I'm going to try to get back because I can't stand that there might be something I overlooked ... or that they added more things!

Now that there's snow on the ground and Thanksgiving is behind us, this will put you right into a holiday mood!


Two more reasons to visit Rosebud's Cottage after Thanksgiving!

In addition to dropping your panties for our Pantie Raid this weekend ... here are a couple more reasons why you need to come in. Floral Fancies by Benartex!

And we have rickrack to match!

And Giddy from Moda ... we're head-over-heels about it!

If that isn't enough to get you in the doors ... print out our coupon on the Go Kids Day website! Local news on their Facebook page, too.


We're having a Pantie Raid to help out local women!

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How would you feel if you could touch the lives of just a few women by doing something easy? What about doing something that is part of an event that could affect thousands of women? Well that's what some of my shop owner friends and I have cooked up for this Thanksgiving weekend!

We know that you're going to be out and about shopping ... and we know that there are going to be lots of bargains to take advantage of. We also know that there are a number of women in our local communities who have some basic needs.  Like undies! Who doesn't like to feel feminine no matter what situation they're in?

What we're asking is that you bring in a package of new women's or girls underwear, sock, nighties, sports bras ... cute or practical is fine ... every size you can think of because we're in all shapes. In exchange, we'll give you a free fat quarter for each package you donate. At the Cottage, we have a cute group of Christmas prints for you to choose from.

There are twelve stores involved ... we're each prepared to give away 400 fat quarters ... the quick math says that we have the potential to touch close to 5000 women!

Our stores are spread out across the country ... some in small towns ... others in big cities. But the need is everywhere. We've each arranged to give what we collect to a variety or organizations in our communities.

If you're in the Twin Cities, you can bring in your donations on Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving ... and if you're going to be out of town, feel free to bring them in before or after Thanksgiving, too.

If you live somewhere else, here's the list of stores where you can drop your panties!

Batiks Etc and Sew What Fabrics ... Wytheville VA

Sweet Home Quilt Shop ... Conyers GA

The Quilted Kitty ... Lincoln NE

Quilting Possibilities ... Forked River NJ

Wish Upon a Quilt ... Raleigh NC

Keepsake Cottage Fabrics ... Bothell WA

Kelly Ann's Quilting ... Warrenton VA

Cotton Patch Quilt Shop ... University Park Fl

Log Cabin Quilt Shop ... La Vista NE

Shiisa Quilts ... Bloomington IN

Clever Quilter ... Newfield NY

Watch the progress report on our Rosebud's Cottage fan page on Facebook. I know the other stores will be giving updates as well. And of course, being independent store owners, we're extremely competitive so each of us is hoping to out-do the others and collect the most! Help me earn bragging rights, ok?

Thanks in advance for any help you can give. We all have lots to be thankful for ... let's spread it around.

Cookie exchange!

Well here it is already ... the last day of the blog hop! Spun Sugar Quilts and Sweet Home Quilt Co are the last ones in the chain and I know Vicki and Melisa will have some wonderful things for you! I'm so excited to see all of you commenting on my project yesterday ... thanks a ton and thanks for spreading the word about the hop.

As I was looking for recipes for our virtual cookie exchange, I came across the recipes that we exchanged at some of our neighborhood and club exchanges from years ago. I lived in a wild neighborhood when we first moved to White Bear Lake! We were about the tenth house or so to be built in our area and as the houses went up, we gained more friends. Lots of neighborhood parties to get to know each other and from it came an annual cookie exchange that lasted a lot of years. When I looked at the print out of some of the recipes, I realized we were the only ones left in the neighborhood of the original group! We'd they all go?

I belonged to another group ... the Lake Area Friends and Neighbors Club ... huge organization where we had lots of get togethers ... many of them having to do with recipes ... and where I made most of my lifelong friends. Like Jeri who helps me on Saturdays. And here's where my cookie exchange tip comes in. One year, several of us tried to outdo each other and picked outrageously hard recipes that we had NEVER tried before. Don't ever ever do that! When you take part in an exchange, only make those tried and true recipes that you know ... like the ones we have here. That particular cookie party was so stress filled ... I know I couldn't wait to wrap up my six cookies on a plate for everyone and just get them out of the house! Then I was hoping no one remembered they were mine. Actually though ... when I think about these cookie parties, I don't remember the treats ... I remember the feeling and look of my friends houses ... and the laughing ... and the total release that comes from hanging around with your girlfriends.

My recipe is for date balls. I forgot how much I love the taste of dates until I came across these recipes! Spent hours rolling these for cookie plates and the bake sale at church. Loved the soft crunch they have. Hope you like them!

Download Cookie recipes Date Rolled Coconut Cookies

Now don't be a stranger to the blog! We still have prizes to give away ... plus ... today I stopped a this adorable vintage sale in Hudson WI and you have got to come back to see the photos I took!! I cannot get the place out of my mind. So instead of visions of sugarplums I'm going to be dreaming of kitchy Santas and glitter and and sweet holiday decorations for the next few days.


Tradition is the glue that holds the holidaze together!

Do you have that 'rule' in your house that once you do something for the holidays, you have to do it again. year. after. year ... even though you are kind of tired of it? Like our tree skirt for instance ... I am so over the bitty prints and the eyelet lace of it ... I'd like to make something different and maybe a little more my style ... my look has changed a bit over time! Mutiny when I suggested it several years ago ... mostly by Bob. But there are some traditions that we have that are kind of charming ... read that to mean I don't have to do much to help. Like the fact that the elves come on Thanksgiving morning ... a little holdover from the trick we'd use to keep the boys behaving when they were small. Or how all the dishes are changed out from every day to holiday for the rest of November and into early January. Festive! Or how about that Christmas light display that seems to illuminate a big chunk of our neighborhood. These are all things that say 'the season has arrived' at our house! If you scroll back to November 2009 when we did the Cross Country Christmas blog hop, you'll be able to see some of the other things that happen around our home each year ... great recipes, too!!

I kind of got stuck on dates for my cookie recipes ... probably because that was the only time we really had them a lot at home. Dates were so exotic ... they came from the exact opposite side of the world from Minnesota where the weather was warm all year long! These sour cream cookies are delicious ... not too hard if you get a rythym down ... and sooooo worth it. Yummy!

Download Cookie recipes Sour Cream Cookies

I'm sharing the designer spotlight with Brenda Riddle from Little Acorns. Can't wait to see what she's made!

With all the hype about smart phones, I felt they needed a pretty place to put them. I hope you like my Smarty-Pants cell phone cozy. I tried to make it easy enough so that you could whip them out for gifts. Don't use wool? Don't worry. They would be perfectly fine made from some other fabric but you might want to make a lining and add a bit of cotton batting for protection. 

Download Mistletoe Make and Bake Smart Phone Carrier

Prizes here today, too! I'm giving away two kits for our very popular Square Deal Tabletopper ... I'll make them from fabric that is on the truck and will be arriving in the next few days. Leave me a comment here on Friday ... I'll pull winners over the weekend. Good luck!

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The Christmas library!

In general, I have a ton of books. But I also have a ton of Christmas books, too! Big distinction. When my boys were small and I'd dream about the perfect Christmas, I would pull out my holiday books while they were napping and read all the ideas and wish that I wasn't so busy with them so that I could make some of the great projects or meals on the pages. I had a boatload of favorites ... Susan Branch, Mary Emmerling, Mary Engelbreit and Martha Stewart were my best friends. I love my Christmas books and have tried to part ways with them but never seem to be able to do that. So I find them in weird places ... like under my bed or in the closet ... and just touching them makes me sit down and flip through ... no matter what time of year it is.

But my other secret love are all the holiday magazines. How can you resist publications with perfectly iced cookies ... or cheesecake ... or roast turkey ... or Martha! I'm not the kind of person who sits at B&N and flips through the magazines and then puts them back on the shelf. I want to own them all. I've been on a self-imposed magazine diet since May and have been pretty good about resisting. But when it comes to Christmas magazines, it's impossible. Those photos are so magnificient! I miss some that have gone away ... like Country Home ... but I'll allow a few to jump into my bag ... mostly Country Living or Martha Stewart. Those become collectible to me and will join the stacks of Christmas books! There's nothing better than to lie in bed and turn the pages.

So ... what is your go-to holiday book? Or are you like me and want to gobble up all the mags you can find?

Well speaking of gobbling ... I know you'll love my cookie today. It was from my Aunt Leona and we only had them at Christmas ... they were always on the plate she sent over. They don't taste the same any other time of year. Filled with dates and raisins and walnuts ... and chocolate!! You won't be able to resist.

Download Cookie recipes Chocolate Drop Cookies

Today our cookies are coming from Lissa of Moda and Julie ... one of my shop owner friends. These are clever girls ... I'm guessing their projects and cookies are going to be out of this world!

And for those of you asking me about a few things ... for the last few days, my pix are of gift items that are available at Kowalski's Market here in White Bear Lake. And no ... there isn't a pattern for the Santa apron but you can call Kowalski's and tell them I sent you. I know they'd be happy to box it up and ship it to your home so you can be all dolled up for the holidaze!

See you tomorrow with a project that is going to be terribly smart! :-)

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Breaking ice ... it's what we do in Minnesota!

I know those of you who know me are going to fall off your chairs when I say this next thing ... but for the most part, I'm kind of on the shy side! Yes. Believe it. Or not. And one of the things that just kills me is to have to go to holiday parties and events where I don't know anyone. Except Bob cuz he's usually the one dragging me to these shindigs. But he'll leave me in a heart beat to talk to someone more interesting. A long time ago, I figured out some coping methods for when I get tossed into these circumstances. I know they'll work for you!

  • When you get there, find something to hold in your hands. Not a plate of fancy snacks ... more along the lines of a plain drink.
  • Always introduce yourself ... even if someone in the group knows you. Makes the others feel like you want to get to know them.
  • Put the ball in the court of the person you're talking to. Listen to a few things they're saying and then zone in on that one thing that will keep them talking for hours. Ask them a ton of questions about the subject ... keep their lips moving and you won't have to speak.
  • If all else fails ... find a decoration or a book closeby that you can use to open a conversation.
  • Remember that the key isn't for you to converse, its for them to open up and talk so that your time will pass quickly.
  • Don't get stuck with the same three people all night. Claim to be dying of thirst and need to find a pop or drink of water. Or a bathroom. Then ... walk in the completely opposite direction when you get what you need.
  • They call it small talk for a reason ... find small things to talk about ... you don't need to know life stories ... unless they're outrageously funny, of course.
  • If all else fails ... ask which is their favorite Christmas cookie on the food table!

My cookie recipe may not seem like a Christmas cookie but we think of it as one. My mom only made them at Christmastime ... and then once in awhile for a special wedding. I love the taste of the almonds and coconut together ... and their pretty strawberry shape. Hope you like the Strawberry Cookies recipe as well!

Download Cookie recipes Strawberry Cookies

We have a big day today! I've seen Celine's project already but not her cookie. Patrick Lose is on board, too ... and so is Kelly Ann Richardson. Can't wait to see what they have for us and what kind of cookie they have!

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