Saturday, December 18, 2010

Stringing Popcorn For Da Tree

I just realized that I haven’t blogged for about a week! 
Gosh, where did the time go?!?
Honestly, I told myself this time last year that I would try to take it easy this year so that I would have more time to get things done to prepare for Christmas and then be able to relax a bit.  It’s not quite so bad this year but it’s still too much too close to Christmas.
I just finished up my last order last night ….
100_4765 And those jingle bells in the center represent the very last ones I have left so hopefully, I’ll be able to find them somewhere so I can stock up and have more available next year.  I know they’re hard to find at the craft stores now, but perhaps they’ll be discounted online after Christmas. 
This pattern (the Jingle Bell Candy Cane candle mat)has been REALLY surprisingly popular.  I wish I had finished the design earlier so more of you could have had the time to finish it for the holidays, but… the good thing is that I have new designs all drawn out and ready to go for next Christmas so I’ll be able to sell them waaaay before the holidays next year.
So,  I’m done with orders now for finished candle mats and have time now to do the baking, cleaning and finish decorating the tree.
The grandson has been pestering me to finish the tree so that he can help to decorate it, but I have to put the popcorn strands on it first.  My fingers only had time to stitch thread on wool and no time to stitch popcorn on thread, so it had to wait.
I did get a start the other day …
100_4768 and it was just enough on the lower branches to allow him to put the candy canes on.   The silly boy ended up decorating the lower branches nicely with every single one of the candy canes.  The upper branches will be caneless this year, I guess.
So, this stringing popcorn has been a tradition for me for …
well, forever. 
We have 10 foot high ceilings so we used to always get huge trees.  The bigger the tree ,  the more popcorn. 
Nowadays, it’s a much smaller tree, so not quite as much popcorn stringing, but it’s still time consuming.  I don’t hate doing it, it’s just that I could be doing so many other things instead, so I put off doing it.  But really, it wouldn’t be our tree without the popcorn, so I HAVE to do it
100_4769 I go through lots of popcorn.  So some tricks to get it done fast?
First of all, I always pop it on the stove, using Orville popcorn.
I don’t use microwave popcorn.  The Orville popcorn popped in a pan on the stove make large fluffy popcorn which is easier to string.
Secondly, I always use dental floss instead of thread to string the popcorn. I use the waxed mint cause I like the mint scent while I’m stringing. :)  With dental floss, you never have problems with the thread breaking … it never breaks.  Heck, we used to have a golden retriever that would hide behind the tree and crunch away at the popcorn.  The string never broke and she easily ate it without messing up the rest of the strand.  Sheesh, I miss that dog.  Best dog ever …
Anyway, that’s pretty much all the tricks for stringing.
I meant to post this a while ago but I forgot…
If you go to HERE they’re giving away FREE, one holiday song each day until Christmas.  There’s some really good music there that is absolutely free! 
I guess they do this every year, but this is the first year for me.  We’ll have to remember to watch for it next year.  Someone remind me, ok?

Ok, ladies.  I’m off to fight the crowds at the mall with hubby.  I really really hate doing any shopping this close to Christmas, but hubby will be with me to keep my crowd claustrophobia under control.

Oh, and I’m a bit disappointed that more of you haven’t advertised your Ebay and Etsy sites in my last blog post.  Thanks to those of you that did, but it’s not too late to give your website a little boost in sales.
Go down to my last post and let everyone know what you’re selling, give the link and wait for the big bucks to come in!
Ok, so maybe you won’t be bombarded with hits, but I’m trying!

Happy Day everyone ! …. I’m going to try to get through this shopping day without becoming frazzled! 


Deanna said...

Loved your candy cane mat! It's really adorable. I tried the popcorn garland one year and as patient as I am, I just couldn't finish! I kept breaking the kernals and gave up. I think tree look so wonderful with popcorn garland.

Happy Holidays,
Deanna :D

Shirley said...

I really like your candy cane mat and thank you for the wonderful memories of the popcorn garland. I can remember stringing popcorn as a child. Did you ever make taffee? I really like your tree. Have a wonderful weekend Merry Christmas from a Missouri Friend.