Movie Madness Bags ::: {Great Gift Idea}

For many years we have had a fun, little gift that we keep on hand. When our children were younger this was the ‘go-to’ birthday gift when they were invited to parties.

It makes a great teacher gift, neighbor gift, thank you gift, birthday gift, etc.  Well, you get it! It makes a great gift for just about anything.

What is this fun gift, you ask? I present to you……

The Movie Madness Bag!

Movie Madness Bag_Great Gift Idea

You will need:

a clear cellophane bag

some fun candy

a few pieces of loose candy..bubble gum, kisses, etc.

a microwave popcorn

a drink…canned, juice box, whatever

a gift card to rent a movie from your favorite rental spot

Something fun to tie it up…raffia, twist-tie, ribbon, rope

a fun Movie Madness tag

{You can download the free printable of the one we use here.}

Or, you can easily make your own.

Movie Madness Bag items

I usually keep about 8-10 of these made up and in our gift closet…ready to go when needed.  The total cost of this gift is around $7…..and they are so fun to receive. Who doesn’t like having everything they need for a movie night in one bag!?

It’s great for all ages.

Movie Madness Bag...great teacher present

We’ve given them to preschoolers and grandparents.  You can personalize them as you wish….a fun, pink, fluffy ribbon for a girl, some rope for a boy, etc., etc.

Movie Madness Bag_Great Gift Idea

 What are some fun gift ideas that you keep on hand?



Sharing with:  Tip JunkieBetween Naps on the PorchThrifty Decor ChickFunky Junk InteriorsDIY ShowoffHome Stories A to Z,  Serenity NowSavvy Southern StyleMy Romantic HomeJennifer Rizzo


Fun Stuff & A WINNER!!!!

Good Monday morning! I hope you had a super weekend. Can you believe that it is Thanksgiving week? Whoa. This is my favorite time of the year and I have been trying to slow it down and not miss anything. Whew! It’s a full time job to do that.

I wanted to share some fun things that we have in the shop with you….and a special discount code that is just for Cottage in the Oaks readers! {You can click on each picture to be taken to the item.}

Many of the items are in very limited quantity and when they are gone…they will be gone!

I love this photo print of what we’ve named “The Reindeer Barn”. I took this photo on one of our road trips in the fall. It is so fun.  We have an 11 x 14 photo print, as well as sets of postcards of this print.

We also have some neat chalkboards tags/labels. Several different shapes to choose from….circles, hearts, rectangles, ovals……

The best-seller in our shop is the Mini French Cafe Tabletop Chalkboard…..and we’ve done a special one just for Christmas! {You can also still order the other colors/finishes, as well.}

Cuffs galore!  You can special order any name or date, short phrase, etc. We’ll be happy to customize one for you.

Some bunting/pennants….

Flour sack tea towels in all kinds of prints…….

Fitz and Floyd created this gorgeous Christmas pattern called St. Nicholas over 20 years ago….it has not been available for the past several years.  We have some wonderful pieces…adding up to a whole set.  If you’d like to start or add to your Christmas china…..we have dinner plates, salad plates, creamer/sugar, dessert plates, cups and saucers….platters.  Check it out! {I love this pattern!}

There’s lots more….those were just some fun highlights.  For this week only we want to offer you a special discount of 20% off your total purchase through November 25, 2012.  Just use the code:


when you checkout. You can get a jump on your Christmas shopping…or fun-for-you shopping. 🙂 You can visit the shop here.

Also….just some blog maintenance……we have outgrown our servers. SO, within the next few weeks we will be updating and changing to a new server.  This should not cause us to lose anyone….BUT, if you subscribe to Cottage in the Oaks via feed there is a slight possibility that the transfer will cause us to lose you. {That would make me sad.} I’ll give you a heads up when we get ready to do it, and if all of a sudden you don’t get a post from us on a weekday….you know we lost you! SO, be sure to come back here and subscribe to the feed again, and we’ll be back on track!

We have a winner of the fabulous Moen Shower Giveaway! It is comment #42: Rebecca Reavis!

Rebecca, shoot me a quick e-mail: cottageintheoaks [at] me [dot] com with your mailing address and we will get it right out to you! Congratulations!

Lot’s of fun stuff going on……

Seashell Pictures {Art Frame}

I shared a picture in the seashell post last week of a frame that we had covered in small seashells. I thought I would share with you all how to do that….it is super easy.

{OK, that little boy in the picture…he is going to be 17 next week!  WHEN, I ask you, WHEN did that happen? And the big boy…he has a birthday next week, too. He’s not going to be 17, though.}

seashell crafts

What you will need:

Any frame, any size, with a flat surface….for the one above I used a 4 x 6 that I already had on hand.

Clear hot glue

Small seashells, sand, small pebbles from the beach {If you don’t live near the beach you can purchase these at art/craft stores, dollar stores, or online.}

Here’s how ya do it:

1.  If you don’t like the color of your frame…you can paint it first.   I liked the finish of the one I had because it was sand-colored and fit the room in which I wanted to use it.  But, you could paint your frame any color before adding the shells for a more dramatic effect.

2. Using the hot glue….cover one side at a time with glue and sprinkle the small shells onto the glue trying to cover as much surface as possible. {While the glue is still ‘wet’ you can sprinkle sand on any uncovered spots if you’d like.}

3. Go back and add larger shells in specific spots with dots of hot glue. Keep covering until you are happy with it!


This project cost us $0….we already had the frame and glue, and we gathered the shells from the beach.  BUT, even if you don’t already have everything… can purchase a frame from the dollar store {it doesn’t have to be pretty…you are going to make it pretty}, and little bags of shells are fairly inexpensive.

What are you working on at your home these days?


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New Things……

Happy Monday!

I hope everyone had a super weekend…they just go by too fast!

We got lots done in the garden, cleaned off the front porch…….

and had fun walking around in the rain at the garden center. 🙂

This is our last week of school here…..yaaaaaaayyyyyyyy!

We homeschool….and I’m never sure who is more excited to get things wrapped up for the year…me or the kids. We all have fun and love it, but once we hit mid-March we are all ready to finish up! 🙂 Ready for summer adventures, a little less structure, and some relaxation. {The pool opens this Saturday!}

I thought I’d share some new things in our etsy shop with you……

We created another version of our Mini French Cafe Tabletop Chalkboard.

It now not only comes in the darker, walnut stain….but in a light French Country gray.

 We also added a couple of new Vintage Flour Sack Tea Towels.

A French Fleura {florist} Advertisement

 and a French sheep advertisement….

 I love sheep. I want some. And chickens.

I need a farm.

If you’d like you can follow my love of sheep, chickens, farms, vintage, fun things, food, etc. on Pinterest here.

What have you guys been up to this weekend?


Chalkboard Chargers…..

Deeeeeeeeeeeepppp in the recesses of the

laundry room black hole storage space

have sat these 13 brass chargers for many years.

I’m not too fond of brass….it’s, well,

too brassy.

I have had these chargers for about 20 years

and many years ago used them quite a lot.

Last autumn when we did a huge cleanout

I almost put them in the yard sale pile;

but then I kept thinking of fun things I could

do with them. At first I thought of some fun

things to create with them for the etsy shop,

then I thought I would distress the rims,

paint the centers with chalkboard paint,

and use them for some fun gifts.

Then, I thought the whole charger would

be great as a chalkboard….still used as a charger.

So, that’s what I decided to do.

That was 6 months ago.

Last week they were still in the black hole storage.

BUT, when I saw my lovely Canadian friend Shannon,

of {aka}design, turn her lovely chargers into chalkboards…..

that put me in gear to get these things out and get on with it!

They were a bit dusty.


But I think they turned out great…and we are having so much fun with them!


 I love these antique silver spoons that we picked up

in an antique store in Gettysburg, PA.

They are my favorites….almost 100 years old.

 Here’s what you need:

Chalkboard spray paint

any kind of charger…metal or wood

Here’s how you do it:

1. Make sure chargers are clean and dust free {that took me a while!}

2. Lay them face down and lightly spray the backs

3. Once the backs are dry, turn them over and spray the fronts with 3 coats of paint.

4. Once they are dry let them cure for 24 hours before using them.

{You may want to store them with felt in between each one so the

paint does not get scratched off when stacking.}

These are so fun to use a place cards, special messages,

games at dinner, etc.


Tomorrow is the last day to enter

our Big 1 Year Blogoversary Giveaway!

If you haven’t…head on over so you don’t miss it!


Sharing with:  Skip to My LouTip JunkieToday’s Creative BlogNot JUST a Housewife,  Blue Cricket DesignThe Shabby Creek CottageWhipperberryThe Idea Room,  Between Naps on the PorchFrench Country CottageThe Lettered CottageThrifty Decor ChickFunky Junk InteriorsAt the Picket FenceMy Uncommon Slice of SuburbiaCommon Ground,  DIY ShowoffHome Stories A to Z a.k.a. DesignSomeday CraftsOrganize and Decorate Everything,  2805Making the World CuterThe Girl CreativeCraftomaniacCarolyns HomeworkFingerprints on the FridgeTatertots & JelloSerenity NowNo Minimalist HereSavvy Southern Style, Coastal CharmMy Romantic HomeRedoux504 Main733 BlogWe Are That FamilyCreating Really Awesome Free Things,  The Charm of HomeDelightsome LifeAnything GoesRooted in ThymePositively SplendidCedar Hill RanchDomestically SpeakingThe Power of Paint

Tea Towels + Plant Markers

It’s Wednesday..

where is the week going!?

I thought I would take a moment to share

a few of the items that we just added in

our etsy shop…..since

there is still time to use the discount code:


for 20% your entire purchase through April 30.

I have had lots of fun making these

new Tea Towels for the shop

{*ahem* and for us here at home! :)}

I love flour sack towels….

and I’ve printed these with vintage advertisements,

some European and some American.

There are seven different prints.

Just click on each picture to be taken to the listing & info.

The European Tea Towel is included in the

Super Giveaway that ends on Friday!

I couldn’t decide which was my favorite……

so we have one of each around here!

Those of you that have been around here

for a while know we like to repurpose old, vintage

shutters into fun things… this.

So, we came up with another idea and

used some old, vintage shutters to make these fun

Chalkboard Garden Markers.

You can write on them with any chalk or chalk pen.

So, what do you think?

 Some more fun stuff will be coming soon…..


Chalkboard Lidded Jars

I just love little jars….and fun ways to

store things or give as gifts.

If I have a jar that is a neat shape and I know I

can get the label off easily, I always save it.

{A great way to get labels off easily is to wash

the jars in the dishwasher…whatever doesn’t

automatically come off will come off easily

when it comes out of the dishwasher.}

My favorite little jars are the pimiento jars….

2 oz. and 4 oz.

They are so cute!

Here’s a fun way to create your own

fun storage jars…basically for free!

Save jars from food items you

already use, get the labels off

and then spray the lids with chalkboard paint.

{1 can costs between $3-$4….and will paint

probably 40 jar lids!}

Here’s what you need:

Chalkboard spray paint

saved jars with labels removed

Here’s how ya do it:

1.  Put your lids on newspaper…ready to spray.

2.  Spray lids with 2-3 coats of chalkboard paint

{It will look shiny until it dries…it dries VERY fast!}

3. Be sure to paint the underside as well.

4. Allow to dry well and then put on jars!


I just love these!

They are great to have on hand to take little gifts

to neighbors, teachers, hostess gifts…..

wonderful to take condiments and extras with meals to others.

Great to store herbs and seeds in, as well!

Don’t forget to come back tomorrow for a BIG, FUN giveaway!

We will be 1 !


Sharing with:  Skip to My LouTip JunkieToday’s Creative BlogNot JUST a Housewife,  Blue Cricket DesignThe Shabby Creek CottageWhipperberryThe Idea Room,  Between Naps on the PorchFrench Country CottageThe Lettered CottageThrifty Decor ChickFunky Junk InteriorsAt the Picket FenceMy Uncommon Slice of SuburbiaCommon Ground,  DIY ShowoffHome Stories A to Z a.k.a. DesignSomeday CraftsOrganize and Decorate Everything,  2805Making the World CuterThe Girl CreativeCraftomaniacCarolyns HomeworkFingerprints on the FridgeTatertots & JelloSerenity NowNo Minimalist HereSavvy Southern Style, Coastal CharmMy Romantic HomeRedoux504 Main733 BlogWe Are That FamilyCreating Really Awesome Free Things,  The Charm of HomeDelightsome LifeAnything GoesRooted in ThymePositively SplendidCedar Hill RanchDomestically SpeakingThe Power of Paint

Vintage German Easter Egg Treats

I shared in a post last week that I love collecting

these vintage, paper mache, German Easter eggs.

I just think they are so fun!

They usually come in three sizes….

for this project I used the largest size.

I was able to find a ton of them at a store

this year, so I thought it would be fun to fill them

with some fun treats for my beautiful group

of middle school girls that I get to spend time

 with each Wednesday night here at our cottage.

They are girls. There is chocolate inside.

There is the cute factor.

It’s a score…dontcha think?

In case you aren’t familiar with these fun eggs….

here’s some pics…..

I love the inside…..usually printed in a fun pattern.

I filled them with paper grass and chocolate goodness……

 Voila! A basket of Easter happiness.

 It was hard….but while putting these together I didn’t eat

not even one piece of candy! Not even the new Reese’s

Peanut Butter eggs. Whew! Because once to have one…..

all of a sudden it’s been twenty!

Have you made any Easter treats this year?

Easter Blessings~

PS I’m sorry that I didn’t sing write ‘wring’? you a song today from Fiddler on the Roof.  I know that has probably gotten you through each day this week so far. I hope you are not disappointed. 😉 Oh! Oh! I have one!….Sabbath Prayer from Fiddler on the Roof….perfect for my Wednesday night girls….a blessing for their eggs. {Oh, that sounded funny…..their vintage German EASTER EGGS!}

“May the Lord protect and defend you.

May He always shield you from shame.

May you come to be

In Israel a shining name.

May you be like Ruth and like Esther.

May you be deserving of praise.

Strengthen them, Oh Lord,

And keep them from the strangers’ ways.

May God bless you and grant you long lives.

(May the Lord fulfill our Sabbath prayer for you.)

May God make you good mothers and wives.

(May He send you husbands who will care for you.)

May the Lord protect and defend you.

May the Lord preserve you from pain.

Favor them, Oh Lord, with happiness and peace.

Oh, hear our Sabbath prayer. Amen.”

{Although “Matchmaker” reminds me of some of my precious Bible study girls. ;)}


Sharing with:  Jennifer Rizzo

New Stuff!

I thought I would take a minute to show you

some of the new items in the etsy shop….

and let you know that you can win a great one if you head on over to

At the Picket Fence.

Here are some of our new items:

Tabletop French Cafe Chalkboard

We have so much fun with these!

I love candles…but I don’t always like the color

of my favorite fragrances.

So we made jar candle covers out

of European linen grain sack that is over 60 years old.

Now our candle jars look so much more fun

sitting around the cottage.

They have a velcro closure on the back

and will fit any large jar candle.

We also had fun covering glass votives in

European linen grain sack……

Our EAT napkins are back in stock!

And we’ve also added our hand stamped leather cuffs to our store.

Pick from some that we’ve already made or let us know

which word or phrase you would like and we will make a

custom one just for you.

Another popular item has been our middle daughter’s

Rubberband Man.

You can read the story behind it here.

Which one can you win?

One of the French Cafe Tabletop Chalkboards

over on the At the Picket Fence blog.

If you are already a Cottage in the Oaks follower

just leave a comment saying so…and then there are lots

of other ways to enter, too!

Go over and enter!

Happy Weekend~

Fantabulous SHABBY APPLE Giveaway!

For those of you that have not been introduced to Shabby Apple…..

Let me be the one!  I recently ordered this wonderful little Shabby Apple gray vintage dress

and I absolutely love it!  It’s me. I’ve dressed it up for fun parties, dressed it down for everyday casual…it’s a winner!

I have always enjoyed shopping and ordering the wonderful Shabby Apple vintage dresses

You guys KNOW how I love vintage everything!

So, I was enthralled when they contacted me and wanted to offer Cottage in the Oaks readers  a special discount;

AND a chance to win this beautiful vintage necklace:

I picked this one out just for you guys……it is my favorite!

It’s called Through the Looking Glass. It is a round glass bauble pendant with a side hinge that opens like a locket. The glass has a fish-eye magnifying effect.  Here’s the really neat thing that I absolutely love about it……the interior accommodates objects up to 4mm thick: photo, dried flower, charm. How awesome is that!  The chain is sterling silver and the necklace is 24″ long…made in the USA.  I just love this necklace! And YOU get a chance to win it!

But before I tell you how you can win this incredible necklace….let me share some of the other wonderful things from this company.

When I first discovered them many months ago….I thought Shabby Apple was just women’s dresses.  Wow! I was wrong!

They cover it all…..the wonderful dresses, of course, but also vintage jewelry, little girls dresses, artwork, crafts, fitness wear, and even maternity dresses!

{Why is it that many years ago when I was pregnant the only maternity clothes I could find were hideous!?

Where was Shabby Apple when I needed cute maternity clothes!? I needed them. I would have been so cute in them.}

These are a couple of my favorite earrings:

And some of my favorite women’s dresses…{I can’t list all my favorites, the page probably wouldn’t load!}

Look at their adorable little girl dresses:

I also love their Shabby Apple fitness clothes….who knew!?

I love this fun vintage art print:

And let me tell you….I want these vintage shoes to be MINE!

They even have fun nail polish…

SO, who wants to go shopping? {Other than me?}

Just for Cottage in the Oaks readers… get a 10% discount at Shabby Apple.

Just type in this special code at checkout for 10% off your entire order:  cottageintheoaks10off

{Discount expires January 20, 2012}

I have been shopping with Shabby Apple for a while….I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

Now, who wants to win that incredible Through the Looking Glass Necklace?

Here is how you can enter:

1. You must become a follower of Cottage in the Oaks if you are not already….and let me know in the comments.

2. You need to LIKE Shabby Apple on Facebook….and come back here and let me know in the comment section that you did so.

3. For extra entries you can blog about our giveaway here at Cottage in the Oaks…and come back here with the link to your blog post in a comment.

4.  Tweet this giveaway…and let us know about it.

5.  Pin this giveaway…and let us know that you did with the link.

6. Post about it on your Facebook….and come back and let us know that you did!

WOW!  Six possible ways to enter!

So, start entering and shopping!

This giveaway is open to US residents only…and will close on December 28, 2011 at 11:00pm EST.

What a great way to start the countdown to Christmas!

I can’t wait to see who wins!  And, um, if, by chance, maybe, it is someone that lives near me….can I please borrow it?

Merry, Merry to you~