Tuesday, May 25, 2010

My neighbors.......

my friends, for 27 years!

Here's the gate that connects our (back) yards together
the path that leads me to their (back) door.

This sign greets me at each visit as I enter their yard.
We have traveled this path back and forth through many seasons of our lives.
Come rain, snow or sunshine.

(that's my back yard in the background)

Cinnamon streusel bread +

Butter cream frosting =

a delectable loaf of tastiness for my back door friends.

Along with party napkins, I have a plethora of cellophane bags too.
They come in handy for packaging an assortment of gifts.
I thought you'd might like to see how I spruce them up.
I start with.....
coffee filters, they're ideal for packaging baked goods,
they're absorbent with a charming ruffly touch .
The tan filters matched my kitchen themed tissue paper.

I've got all three designs of Goose Berry Patch tissue: Christmas, Garden and Kitchen prints,
(my all time favorites).
To my disappointment the tissue and matching bags have been discontinued from the GBP line, if anyone has any connections...
I would love it if they'd bring it back.

I cut a strip long enough to wrap from top to bottom.
Covering only the front and back, leaving the sides exposed, for a tiny hint at the surprise inside.

To dye the tags, dip or spritz with brewed tea.
Sprinkle cinnamon over damp tags , let dry.
Once again, the impatient one that I am...they went into the oven for a quick dry.
When they completely dried, I sprinkled a few drops of extract.
Some of my tags were scented with vanilla extract the others with cinnamon.
I change the extract to match the flavor of the confection inside.
Lemon, orange, coconut and almond extracts are the scents I use the most.
(I always use extracts and tea dyes for wrapping all food products)

Jot a note or recipe.

Tie with jute twine.

Reach into your collection of......Napkins, laces, ribbons or handkerchiefs, these are all simple elegant options.
Using fabric napkins or vintage hankies is giving a gift wrapped in a gift.

Dried or candied fruit slices can be used as charms with the tags.

Teas and candied fruit can be given during any season,
served up hot or cold.
I drop a few slices in the cello bag with the tea.
The candied lemon and orange slices are wonderful when they're infused with the tea.
Throughout the summer......sun tea is always brewing on my patio.

A swatch of lace, candied fruit and a little flower makes your cellophane bag into an elegant gift.

An easy and inexpensive way to personalize your ribbon is simple to achieve with rubber stamps.
You choose the caption, ribbon and color of ink, then stamp away.


Lori said...

oh, man!!! i bet they thank their lucky stars they are your neighbors every time you walk through that gate bearing a treat from your kitchen...i know i would!!! your yard is beautiful!!!

Ceekay- Thinkin of Home said...

How nice to be able to see your neighbor so easily...and your tags sound adorable!! Happy Memorial Day weekend!

Wendy said...

I wish I was your neighbor! It looks delicious! So many great ideas in one post!! You are always so great at inspiring us!!

Wendy said...

Me again! Was wondering if you could share how to make the candied lemon slices. Is it hard?
They look wonderful and it sounds so good with a cup of tea :)

w said...

oh wow.

i'm in the process of buying the house across the street just for you. bring food over anytime.

Chatty Crone said...

Where do you live? I'm coming over. Every thing you do and make - is fabulous. sandie

Mimi Sue said...

Great ideas! Having neighbors that are also friends is a true blessing. Mimi

The Quintessential Magpie said...

I want to be YOUR neighbor, Sarah! Such talent and great ideas!


Sheila :-)

Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions said...

I"ll come be your neighbor, Sara! : ) What a lot of thought you put into this ~ and it shows!

Amber said...

How wonderful it is that you are so close with your neighbors. That's surely something to be treasured!

I just wanted to thank you so much for your comment on my blog. It is so encouraging and helpful to me to read about other mamas that had to leave their children for an extended period and made it through it all! I really, really appreciate you taking the time to comment. I actually did buy a bunch of small inexpensive gifts, one for each day we'll be gone, for my mom to give the kids. I'm going to wrap them. I didn't think of hiding them, although they'll be at my mom's so that might be a little more work for me to do and for them to find.

So thanks again!


Sue said...

I remember your neighbor as the kind of neighbors we had when I was growing up. Everyone knew everybody on the block. They watched out for everyone else.
It's really not the same today. You are lucky to have this kind of friendship with your neighbor!
Love your little tags and how you created them. I'll be making some soon- I'll be the envy of all my sisters-in-law. *grin*
:-) Sue

Catch the Kids said...

I wish I had the time to do things like this! It looks so beautiful.

Lori said...

Oh guess what?? I'm moving next door!!LOL What I wouldn't give for a adorable and creative neighbor!! I would be in heaven! Love every single aspect of this post, would love a slice of the coffee cake more!!! Love ya,Lori

Cora said...

Love all your ideas!! Especially the scented tags! Awesome!!
Thanks for sharing...
Have a great holiday!

A Bite of Country Cupcakes said...

Such Gorgeous ideas...
I think I would like to neighbour you....Lol!!

Betzie said...

Ohhh Sara...how absolutely wonderful and such a heartwarming gift. HOW LUCKY you are to have wonderful neighbors like that and how lucky they are to have YOU!
Thanks for sharing and I loved visiting your blog as always...hugs, Betzie

Sares said...

You can move in next door to me if this is the kind of treats you share! How wonderful you really enjoy yours. I love the little gate too! Hope your week is going well and thanks for stopping by for a visit, I always love hearing from you!

The Polka Dot Closet said...

Love it, I never thought of using extract on the tags, a vanilla tag would be great. When your really impatient for your tags to dry I alway's throw mine in the microwave, it dry's them really fast!

Shelia said...

Hi Sara! I love the little peek into your backyard and I'll bet your neighbors are glad you live next door tempting them with all those delicious smells!
You food looks wonderful and love how you package it up! You're wonderful. ;)
Be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

Rosie said...

Oh dear girl, thank you for your lovely visit. Anita, is one of my dearest blog friends, I know she would love to chat with you.
Your creativity is over the top!!!
I LOVE this post{coffee filters...who knew}
OK, if "this" is what travels
between your fences, I need to know if your other neighbor is moving...let me know when the "for sale" sign goes up...
Smile on Rosie

Yellow Rose Arbor said...

What a nice neighbor you are, I'm sure your friends appreciate all the special touches you do!

I lived in the same house with the same neighbors for 35 years. I'm still in touch with those sweet neighbors even though I moved 70 miles away almost ten years ago! In fact, they are the ones who came to take me to take on my birthday recently!

Thanks for your prayers for my sister!


Maria said...

What wonderful ideas you always have Sara!
I'll bet there are ooodles of things to do with those coffee filters!
Using them for treats is a SWEET idea!
thank you for the great tip!
I hope you are enjoying this lovely spring week ~ Maria

{Bellamere Cottage} said...

Oh Sara....you are soooo clever. I am sure everyone who receives one of your beautiful confections is delighted and thrilled. How sweet and special. Yeah, not only am I NOT a baker, if I did I promise the recipient would not be impressed. :-) And, tags too?? WOW. SCENTED. ANOTHER WOW.... Holy Moly.

Thanks so much for coming......you're sooo sweet.


Mary said...

What a wonderful post. Long term neighbors seem to be disappearing from the landscape. That you make the trip through the gate to their yard tells me they are as good to you as you are to them. Your treats look wonderful and I'm sure they taste as good as they look. I'm so glad you were able to make jelly with your visitor. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

Lorna ~ Lace and Ivy Cottage said...

Hi Sara!
Thanks for stopping by my blog and for the sweet comment. I wish I had you as my neighbor! We live in the country and really don't have close neighbors. I can only imagine the sweet treats you've gifted your neighbors throughout the years!

wendy said...

Well, dang. I wish you were my back door neighbor.
Makes me think of my BFF when I lived in Utah and always running down the end of the street to "hang out" with her.
nice gift ideas

Jennifer Juniper said...

The dried fruit really makes it special! What lucky neighbors!

Marie Antionette said...

Hello Sweetheart,
How nice to have a connecting fence to not only your neighbors ,but your friend as well. 27 yrs is a long time. You back yard is so pretty.I love the stone.
Love your very sweet and beautiful packaging. You make so many lovely things.I would not want to unwrap or eat them....To pretty to look at.
Thank you for the visit.I also enjoy your company.
I had some family over for the memorial weeken.We had a very nice visit.
I'm going to visit Sherry of Edie Marie's attic in July. She came to my home last May.We had such a wonder time. I took her into New Orleans.I've never really been up North.So I'm looking forward to that.
You take care Dear,I will try and put a new post up soon.You see my hubby just retired and its benn strain around here...LOL.No time for posting of late. He retired, I did not...LOL
XXOO Marie Antionette

Kristin @ My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia said...

There is nothing like having wonderful neighbors, they are lucky to have you!

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

I'm sure I'd have a "Welcome" gate to my yard if you were my neighbor - especially if you brought beautifully wrapped goodies to my back door! What great ideas! laurie

Melissa Miller said...

Sara I wish I was your neighbor. You are an amazing friend to me and I really appreciate you. I can just imagine the delicious treats and sweet friendship that would come my way if I was so blessed.
Th back yards are so serene. That is one delicious looking cake. Mmmmm...:)

Have a wonderfully blessed and lovely week. ~Melissa :)

PS Thank you for all of your kind words lately. You're the best to take the time to write them. Chestnut says Hello as well. :)

Wsprsweetly Of Cottages said...

Hi Sara..
Neighbors like that are so rare anymore.
I never fail to be awed by some of the fantastic things I see when I go visiting. Such care and time you take with your wrappings...I love your attention to detail! Make me smile!

Rettabug said...

These are FABULOUS ideas, Sara! Thank you so much for sharing them. I love the idea of the pinking shears along the edge of the printed paper & using only a sm. strip of it. Unique & clever.
I am putting both items on my shopping list.

Lori E said...

I completely understand the backyard neighbour connection. We put a gate in our 6 foot high fence years ago and at one point we just took out a 6 foot wide section of fence to open up both yards. The kids played mostly in their yard and the adults in our yard. Great memories. Now they live 5 hours away.
Your decorating ideas for the treats are so fun and economical. Great ideas.

Chari at Happy To Design said...

Hi Sara...

Ohhh my...what a blessing to have such sweet neighbors/friends for so many years! I tell ya what...after seeing your beautiful gift...I wished that you were my neighbor! wink! Girlfriend, I just loved your presentation! Your beautiful wrappings, tags, etc...really make this gift even more special! I'm going to have to buy some of these things to have on hand...for one never knows, when a little gift is needed!!! Thank you sooo much for sharing these great gift wrapping tips...I loved them!!!

Darlin', I was just tickled pink to find a note waiting for me on my "Beloved Valentine" post (Sunday Favorites rerun)! I always...always enjoy our visits!!! Thank you for coming by and thank you for leaving such a sweet note!!! I hope that you and your sweet family is having a super summer! Take care, sweet friend!!!

Love ya,
Chari @Happy To Design

Anne - Fiona and Twig said...

How wonderful to have such good neighbors close by!
Beautiful photos, Sara!

Have a wonderful week!

Michelle said...

Hi Sara!! Thanks so much for coming by to wish me a happy birthday. Why didn't you bring some of that streusel over? Lol! I love your backyard and your neighbors yard. That little gate that connects you two is just adorable and how lucky you both are to have each other as neighbors. Having wonderful neighbors is SO special. They almost become part of your family, right? I can't believe you made all this...wait, I can. You are the new Martha Stewart to me, lol! You are so creative! Love everything here when I come over...you just cheer me up!


Lots of love and hugs from me and the kitties. :))

Tracy Suzanne said...

Hey Sara. It was so great to hear from you. I know how busy things get with real life and hard it is to get by to see everyone and still look at all the new goodies out there.

This looks so good! And you make the presentation so special. I've got to get better neighbors. I just love all the attention you give it before it leaves your house. And your handwriting on your tag is so pretty! How special your neighbors must feel.

Hope you come by and visit again soon. Love and hugs...Tracy :)

Jess @ Frugal with a Flourish said...

Mmmmm.... how tasty! Great idea on scenting the tags too!

Joyce said...

I never thought to use a coffee filter. You are so clever. My daughter had made for me a wonderful stamp that says from the kitchen of Joyce (last name too) and it was so pretty. Problem is I have no idea where I put it after Christmas. I hope I did not accidently toss it out but have looked and looked and can't locate it. Hope your weather warms up and enjoy the company.

RACHELLE said...

that is exactly the kind of nighbor i have!

hee hee...

(In my daydreaming)!

your yards are lovely and your tag idea is yummy too!



Tanza said...

Hi Sara,
Ooohhh darn, I WANT to be YOUR neighbor !! I think it's wonderful that you share a gate to each others'yard .. How neighborly is that ?! Your yard is beautiful ..

But Sara, THAT BREAD !! Now, girlie, that is mean .. My mouth is watering, I can almost smell it baking, and than the frosting .. SWEET !! I LoVe how you wrap and embellish the goodie bags as well .. What a wonderful and exciting gift to recieve .. what a sweet heart you are ..Thanks for always sharing sweetness, and again for stopping in to always say hello !! Have a happy rest of your week my friend ~
HuGs ~tea~ xo

Sandy Michelle said...

Hi Sara! Thanks for the congrats on being an Auntie again! Gosh I wish you were my neighbour! I'm not kidding when I say that an hour ago I witnessed my drunken neighbour kicking his garage door and yelling at an imaginary person-yikes!

Sandy xox

Anonymous said...

nice post,.. like those cookie

Kathy said...

Hello Sara...Such a sweet surprise for sure...
Loved looking through your blog as is my first time here.
How nice to have lived in the same place for so long...and to know and love your neighbors so well.
Love the Welcome on the gate!
xoxo~Kathy @
Sweet Up-North Mornings...

Stop over when time allows...
Love to have you.

Jessabells said...

Thank you so much for stopping by my blog and writing such nice a nice comment. I hope you visit often and I will visit you. Wishing I were your neighbor. Those candied lemons look really good. You have a great blog too.
Many Blessings,

Rene @ cottage and vine said...

There is something very special about home made goodies that are beautifully packaged. Truly inspiring.

Thank you for leaving the sweet note on my blog. Enjoy your day.

sanjeet said...

So many great ideas in one post!! You are always so great at inspiring us!!
PPC Advertising India

Lisa said...

What a sweet garden! I bet their house is just as cute.:)
I did not know Gooseberry Patch had discontinued the tissue paper! How could they? I have a few sheets left over from Christmas...I guess I need to make it stretch.LOL!

Kate said...

So great to get such a sweet note from you!!! Thank you. Great talent on your blog I see:)) Isn't great to see what all of us bring to the table. Such fun!!!

Have a beautiful weekend my friend


Anonymous said...

Sara I am so glad you stopped by! My google reader somehow has not been bring up your posts so I have missed several.

This is such a charming posts and I have received so much inspiration from it. The idea of cinnamon and extracts on the tags is such a fantastic and scentsible idea!

How fun to have a gate in the back yard to connect your neighbor- I would love to have a neighbor like that!

Yes summer is so busy, we just finished up a rodeo Bible camp (cooking for it) and then 2 different sets of guests. Tomorrow we are off to Tennessee for a week for a conference then back home for another camp and more guests. I do enjoy it!

Bee blessed

Lydia said...

Oh, Sara, your ideas are surely sweet surprises. Love the coffee filter idea, and the extract scented tags. I do cellophane and tart molds from Italy, sometimes doilies where appropriate, but love the filters:)

Thank you dear Sara for your cheerleading and warm words. I truly appreciate your support and care, more than you may realize.

xo Lydia

PS- How about the cinnamon bread recipe??? Looks so fabulous. And loved your previous post and edible goodies so wonderfully photographed. Just luscious and mouth watering:)