Wednesday, November 23, 2011

DIY Christmas Ornament: A Star Tree Topper

I was looking at our little Christmas tree this morning, and it was leaning a little bit to one side, like a puppy cocking its head. It looked a bit lonely and- darn it- I’d like to make it merry just in time for Christmas.

When my kingpin bought the tree in Divisoria, he got the lights, the ornaments, and the ribbon for free, all for a total of P400 (US$9) -a real steal for a quick rush of that Christmas spirit. That’s why I always ask him to buy things like these because he seems to have that kind of persuasive charm with the vendors- something that I’m just lacking. And yup, he almost got everything…except for the tree topper.

What is a tree topper? Well, it’s literally what you put on top of a tree, usually on a faithful holiday like Christmas. It can be a star, an angel, a bow, or another kind of ornament that has a special meaning to those who reside in the home.

To Catholics and Christians, the star reminds us of the star of Bethlehem, while an angel symbolizes the angel of the Lord from the Nativity. While the angel reflects our hope for protection, I also like topping our tree with a star, to symbolize our wish for light and guidance in our lives. 

I remember when I was a kid, we had this beautiful golden star which we brought out every Christmas for the tallest tree I’ve ever seen (at least it seemed taller to me back then). I don’t know where that star is anymore, and I doubt if I can find one that doesn’t cost the entire amount of the tree we bought.

I promised myself I’ll save up for a bigger tree and a beautiful golden star next Christmas, but for now, I needed a quick-fix for our merry little three-feet-tall budget tree. 
It's better if you can use an aluminum sheet (or cut it out from a disposable baking pan), but if you don't have something like that, a very nice piece of stiff cardboard will do. 

 In my case, I found an old greeting card, the size of a regular notebook. The print was lovely too, so I decided to use it. (I don’t smoke, in case you’re wondering. This one's meant for my brother.)  

 Make a pattern of a star. No, you don't need to download one; it doesn't have to be perfect, just sort of eyeball it. Make sure the lines are straight though, so use a ruler.

 Cut it out to look like this. See the stem and the base? That will hold the star in place on top of your tree. You can cut the stem taller, shorter, thinner, thicker, or any way you decide. You can even create a scalloped base.
 Now find the middle of the star by lining all the points together. I didn't do so well with this, but what the heck. When you line (with a pencil or a pen), make sure that you're lining the back of the star and that you push it hard enough to leave a dent or mark on the front. This makes it easier for you to fold each arm of the star by pinching the sides together. This gives the star a 3-dimensional effect.

  Now make the ends of the base meet each other and secure it with a tape.

May the star of the Lord make you feel His holy presence. May it light your way and shower you with blessings all throughout the coming year.


Monday, November 14, 2011

The Full Moon and the Christmas Star

There was a full moon 2 nights ago. The night breeze brought the early holiday spirit into our home as I tinkered with the Christmas lights on our balcony rails. I wanted to capture the beauty of the evening, and this is what I got:

And then I wondered, if the bright Christmas star that guided the three kings to the birthplace of our Lord Jesus Christ in Bethlehem, was just as dazzling and wonderful.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Cleaning my Closet

The place is my old bedroom, and I have been spending the last few days cleaning out my closet of all the things I don't need anymore. I realized that I have too much stuff that the entire room looked like a walk-in closet. It's gotten so bad that I had to put things on top of the bed and on the floor. I know I have cleaned out a lot of my junk just a few months ago. But it's like a magician's hat; I just keep pulling things out of nowhere.

Let's see...

For selling... (extra cash is always welcome)
For giving away.. (Christmas Drives are almost here)
For sending to the recycling center... (always good to recycle)

That's three loads of mountainous junk I have divided them into.

hmmm... where to put all those books...

Do you know what's the hardest part of cleaning out a closet is? It's convincing yourself that everything is not of sentimental value. You know how you can get attach to certain things just because you're so used to seeing them? You get anxious just knowing that you're not going to anymore, and you start to fret about what can and cannot happen because of that missing item. It happens to me all the time, and I just choose to close my eyes and drop it on one of those three piles that I've made. When I don't see them, I don't even remember them.

Now if I could only restrain myself from digging out those darn things again...just until the hauling truck arrives.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Color Scheme for My Baby's Nursery

So this is what it’s like.  

These days, I feel like my body is made of lead. I’m nauseous, gassy, and extremely lazy. And with all the crying fits at comedy shows and TV commercials, all that’s missing is a straight jacket. In spite all these, it’s amazing to have this little bean growing inside me! It’s pure joy!

My head is already filled with decorating projects. I plan to transform my old bedroom into a nursery room. I can’t wait to get started! But this time, of course, the painting will be done by professionals. I just can’t deal with fumes and fatigue right now. Even so, I'm still going to do a lot of crafting, and it’s going to be fun and pretty!

Now I haven't got a clue whether it’s a boy or girl; either way, I'm choosing the color combination of blue and yellow for the nursery, because it's also adult-friendly.

I have a huge bed taking too much space in my old bedroom now, and I don’t know if I should keep it there. I’d like to let it go, but it’s extremely sentimental to me because it’s been my bed for the past 20 years. But I figured if I was going to have a nursery, I would just need a small bed that can also serve as a sofa.

I’m excited to add some cute accessories and furniture in the room. I already have a huge built-in bookcase where all my junk is piled up. Well, I hardly consider my books junk, but my dad said to get rid of them. I think I’ll just donate the books to charity, and keep a few of my favorites until my baby grows old enough to appreciate them. I plan to turn the bookcase into a massive storage and display case for more of baby’s things. I think I’m going to need lots of wicker baskets and decoupage boxes. That's so darling!
Oh, and if it's a girl, pink accents would definitely be a staple! If it's a boy, like my kingpin is hoping for, I'm sticking with just the blues, greens, and yellows. What do you think? ^_^ 

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Room Makeover: Master Bedroom Mini Reveal

All this time I’ve been giving you nothing but plants, and weeds, and green things… and you’ve been patiently reading about it because you know I’m stuck in the countryside until who-knows-when.

And now, you may have noticed that I’ve been gone for awhile too. So darn it! You deserve a  damn good explanation!

Well… I sneaked out.

I went back to the city for a week, because after a month of staring at nothing but green and brown things, I desperately needed to see cement and garbage and traffic congestion. Beyond the not-so-sarcastic comment, I’d like to tell you that I used the opportunity to complete the master bedroom makeover. Uhm… at least a quarter of it.
Remember how it looked like before?

Ok, so before you react to the green mushiness of the room, in my defense, it’s all I can do with the time that I had, and of course, the money in my wallet – meaning nadah.. kaput..

The budget for this look? US$0  Php$0

The entire makeover project- painting included- cost me Php2,300 (US$55).

You can't see it in the photo, but the walls are painted in a milky color. I think I should have made it darker, but in reality, it's perfect the way it is - not too yellow, not so white..just creamy goodness. I wanted to put a sandy colored curtain up over the bed, but I knew I had old curtains laying around from the old house (which I bought long ago in Divisoria for Php300 or US$8). Why buy when you can work with something you already have.  Meaning everything you see here, are things that I already own.

I'm still not happy with the bedroom though. It's still missing a lot of elements. I have a lot of things I want to do with it, but it would have to wait until I permanently go back to the city. Any suggestions?

For now…

I’m back in the valley of blah.

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