Oct 31, 2011

pieces of april product review.

hello, readers!
 remember the lovely etsy owner, April, who sponsored my summer garden party a few months past? 
| shop // facebook // blog // twitter

well, I am very excited, as she kindly has agreed to sponsor a product review as well, allowing me to choose any one of her beautiful items from her shop Pieces of April.

the package came very nicely wrapped. triplely wrapped, in fact. :) the contents within were reassuringly safe from any damage that may have come through the cruel world of shipping. 

shipping was incredibly fast. the package arrived within two to three days. 

april kindly sent me this lovely pink, peony pin in which I squealed when I saw it...

since 'tis so adorable, I think I shall pin it onto my grey ruffle coat {as pink and grey go splendidly together.} 

along with my "order," she also includes a free gift in the packages... 

these bobby pins sweet, are they not? 

// summary //
shipping was incredibly fast {{perfect for last minute gifts}}.

prices are extremely reasonable for good quality items.

packaging was extremely good. one who purchases from her shop can be rest assured that their item will not break. 

items are of good quality {my brooch was made on a vintage pin}, handmade, cute and stylish.

april provides courteous and fast customer service.
{have a question? you will not have to wait weeks nor days to hear from her}

// ordering information //

almost all orders april ships come with a free gift of some type. 

all orders come with a packing slip with specific details included. 

april promotes her other business by including in her orders either a sample or flyer. 

depending on the item itself, an order will either be packed in a mailing box or envelope. all rings from her shop come in a mailing box. 

I highly encourage you to visit her shop here. she sells the sweetest handmade accessories and cards that are unique and give the perfect, feminine touch to any outfit. 

special thanks to sweet and generous April for making this product review possible. 

*{{all thoughts and photographs above are my own. I was not paid to do this review}}. 

fare thee well october.

goodbye dear october! 
goodbye golden hilltops. 
warm afternoons. 
clear crimson mornings. 
victorian reenactment.
good bye light sweaters.
lacy, gossamer scarves.
goodbye days spent at the seaside.
afternoons spent on mama's old quilt.
goodbye watercoloring with Julia.      
hullo november! 
hullo, grey buttoned coats. 
hullo, crimson cable cowls.
hullo, warm pumpkin pie. 
hullo, owl notebooks filled with  my writings.
hullo, letters in my mailbox.
hullo, brown paper packages tied up with strings.
hullo, corn bread with butter and honey. 
hullo, pumpkin spice latte. 
hullo, knitting needles by the fireside.  
hullo, apple cider.
hullo, inspiration around every corner.

what's your favorite part of november? 

>>images via pinterest<<

Oct 30, 2011


o c t o b e r 2 5 t h 
i stirred awake as the clock in the room next door chimed, "it's 7:30. good morning house!" and for the first time in a long while, i didn't mind rising at such an "early" time. my cat greeted me with an impatient meow. even though 'twas early. even though the sun didn't greet me with her golden rays over the distant hills. to-day was going to be a wonderful day. a very special day. because...
 i turned fifteen.   
yes, like miss carlotta, i like birthdays---a lot. the fact of wrapping presents in lace and twine, writing cards with special messages, and making the whole day very special, appeals very much to me. and it truly makes one realize how loved they are by so many lovely people.   

every year my dear family and friends make my birthday so special, but this year has surpassed them all. in fact, as i type the festivities are still going on. :) 

the morning was filled with all sorts of sweetness. an e-card from a dear friend, a letter & package sealed with a "G" from another on the table, and a note from my darling Father. but the "icing on the cake" so to speak, was the post written by my two dearest friends in the whole world Miss Johanna and Miss Bethany. 
and so from the bottom of my heart I give my thanks...

dear mama and papa :: you are the best. period. you always make everything so special. everything so memorable. these fifteen years spent with you have been absolutely wonderful! I am so thankful for all the love and affection you have shown through sweet hugs, self-sacrificing actions, and sometimes even through things unspoken. 
in other words :: you just make life wonderful. :) *hugs* 

dear miss johanna and miss bethany :: wow! that's all I can really say. I often stop and ask myself, "how can I deserve such amazing friends???" not a day passes when I do not thank the Lord for you and and our wonderful friendships that I am blessed to experience. you two are so incredibly sweet, and I cannot truly describe what you both mean to me.

dearest Johanna :: you have blessed me once again. I cherish your friendship so very, very much. from the first time I meet you, I only had dreamed - prayed - to call a girl like you just, "friends," even, "acquaintances," but how grateful I am that I can call you my dearest, "sister." you have encouraged me in some very hard times and strengthened my walk with Christ. and that is one of the most precious, priceless gifts that you could give. love you so much, deary!  

dear facebook friends :: you all are too sweet! all your sweet notes on my wall made my day SO special! thank you so much for taking time out of your day to do so. ;) 

dear Gabby {a.k.a my twin sister} :: from the first time I viewed your blog, I knew I had found a kindred sister in you. ;) finding the package in my mailbox was a special, special treat and I thank you so much for the sweet letter, parcel, and words of wisdom ;) that I will treasure forever. love you so very much!

dear church family :: we have been through a few hard times in the past, but through it the Lord has brought us through it strengthened in wisdom and in love. you have always been there to support me, and you are the family that I had always dreamed of. :) thank you so much for also making my birthday so special with your sweet smiles and warm birthday greetings. 

dear neighbors :: one seriously couldn't ask for better ones. thank you dear Valerie for always greeting us with a sweet smile and a bright spirit. it's always fun to visit you. ;) thank you dearest Alysia for the sweet handkerchiefs  

dear violin teacher :: thank you so much for taking the time out of your morning and calling me just to simply say " happy birthday."

dear Miriam :: thank you so much for sweetly calling me on my birthday. I really enjoy our little tradition. ;) you always make my day by hearing your sweet voice, and I loved chatting with you. thank you also for the sweet cinnamon-smelling package that sweetly greeted me when I returned home. someday we shall see each other---that's a promise! 

dear Joanna :: 14 1/2 years now. wow! thank you so much for our girl's day out. definitely we should do it again. :)  

dear Aunt Sue :: you are THE BEST!!! :) thank you for always making my birthday so, so special. 'twould not be the same without you. wishing you could be with me now. next year to be certain. :) 

dear disneyland workers :: thank you for making me feel "famous." :) the {free} happy birthday button will be a treasured, little trinket to remind me of the new memories made there for my fifteenth birthday. especially want to thank the worker of the "Jungle Cruise" who called me "Princess Grace." ;)  

dear starbucks :: thank you for sending me the birthday coupon for a free drink of my choice. I really enjoyed the yummy, venti, vanilla chai frappichino with extra whip cream to-day. :)  

dearest camille :: thank you so much for the sweet package that also greeted me when I returned home. :) the "little somethings" you included inside were a sweet treat, but the scriptures you wrote down for me are priceless jewels that I will forever treasure. thank you for your dear friendship, no, in fact thank you for being the sweet sister I had always prayed for. <3 you!    

and to my dearest readers :: thank you. that's all I can truly say. without you my little garden wouldn't be the same. your sweet, cheerful, encouraging comments are little drops of sunshine that brighten my garden making it flourish. I cannot begin to form words to say how grateful and thankful I am for your support, for your kindness, for your warm, tender love. reading each and every comment to wish me happy birthday brought warmth and joy to my heart. you are amazing. each and everyone of you. 

with fondest regards,
the keeper of the garden.    
// to be continued //

Oct 27, 2011

farewell from the old-fashioned girl {+ fall fashion winners}

Before I leave, I have to share with you the winners of the Fall Fashion Giveaways....

The winner of the lovely Purse is ...

Miss Rosi

Please take a moment to contact me here, please. 

The winner of the beautiful scarf is ...

Miss Hannah 

Please take a moment to contact miss grace here, please.

Congratulations to both of you ladies! 

sadly, the time has come for me to say farewell to all of grace's sweet readers. it has been such an amazing joy to tend her sweet garden for a time. the aroma of her lavender atmosphere greatly refreshed my soul. today, I just want to take a moment to say thank you |

dear grace | first and foremost, I want to thank you for allowing me to be a part of your lovely garden for a time. it has been such a blessing to get to know your sweet readers, and share with them an abundance of autumn activities. autumn is certainly my favorite time of year. and I want to thank you for making it special for me. working together with you on this event, I feel, has only deepened our friendship and bond. thank you for everything.

dear readers | you all were such a wonderful pleasure to write for! each and every thought shared here was joyously embraced, and treasured within my heart. you ladies are so very sweet, grace is so very blessed to have you stroll about her garden. I pray that within the near future you may have the opportunity to visit my home, and come to know me well throughout my hopelessly old-fashioned letters.

may the Lord bless you all.
| The Old-Fashioned Girl |

Oct 25, 2011

happy birthday sweet girl.

today is dear Grace's birthday, sweet readers! what a joyous day it is to be sure. over the past month, I {{Johanna from An Old-Fashioned Girl}} and sweet Bethany have collaborated together with sumptuous plans as to what we could possibly do to add just a hint of surprise to Grace's special day. soon we came to the conclusion that a loving post would be the best way to show are warm affections towards this dear girl. however, therein lay one small impediment. we hadn't the slightest idea how we would go about becoming a co-authoress on Graces blog, without her suspecting that is. yet, the Lord had plans. days after I had offered up a prayer, my former blog was completely ruined! everything gone! destroyed. 

and of course, Grace, not knowing what a dangerous thing she was indeed doing, let me become a co-authoress of her blog for a short time. *hee-hee* our Lord works in mysterious ways, does He not? today, He has worked in a way of which I had never imagined He would. yet. here. I. am. 

... for grace ...
| a few words from two dear friends |

My dearest friend, 

I still remember the day when I visited this garden for the first time. you were the 'new girl' in the world of blogging, and had only a few posts to your name. yet I saw in you a kindred spirit from the very first buds which bloomed herein. I was at once charmed by the lovely atmospheric style in which your portrayed your thoughts. for within each of your letters shared here, you shared with me a bit of who you are. a girl who I knew could someday be my very good friend. one blessed day, the Lord put his hand upon my life, and orchestrated a way for us to become better acquainted. we became good friends. we became as sisters. and through the love of Jesus, our friendship blossomed as though it was a bud residing here within the walls of your garden.

today, I feel as if I could say I have known you forever and ever. how can it be that I have only to say I have known you for a few short years? however, through the short years I have known your sweet presence; you have become one of my dearest friends. you are a simply amazing young woman, dear girl. although many miles may forever separate us, you are never far from my thoughts. hoping that you know this; I thank the Lord continually for bringing you into my life. you have truly been an example of His loving kindness. you are truly an example of how great God is. 

thank you for being who you are. thank you for being my sweet Lavender Friend. praying that, as the years draw on, our friendship may never grow dim. you are so precious to me. may the Lord draw you closer to Himself in many ways, sweet girl. may He continue to work within you, and shine His face upon your life, filling you with His radiance and joy. may you continue to steep in his grace.

Love Always
Your Old-Fashioned Girl
{{a note from Bethany}}

Dear Grace,

Happy 15th birthday dear, sweet friend! Ever since I first laid eyes on your blog, which was when I entered your homemade card giveaway some Christmas' back, I instantly knew that we had become friends! I have always been impressed by your lovely writing style and how warm you make your readers feel through your lovely posts. Your friendship has been a true blessing from the Lord and I thank Him alone for sending you to me! :D I want to publicly share what a wonderful friend and encouragement you have been to me and thank you for all your warm letters, friendly e-mails and all the times you have blessed me with such a sweet friendship. Though I've yet to speak with you in person or see your sweet face I know that we will always be friends close at heart! May the Lord Jesus Christ bless you dear sister, as you journey towards His path and may be give you many joys and blessings on your birthday this year! May you grow closer to Him this year than the last and truly become a woman of the Lord. May you be a blessing to all you meet and come in touch with, which you have always done. God bless you and have a very happy birthday! :D


Please stop by, and take time to wish Grace a happy birthday, sweet readers!

| Johanna |
{{don't hesitate to visit me HERE.}}

Oct 24, 2011

winner's announced. you could be the one!!!

congratulations to our winners of our "walk through the orchard," garden event!!! thank you to all who entered our giveaways. we pray that you had a lovely time enjoying fellowship as well as the wonderful world of autumn that our Creator sends to us every year.

I love giveaways. in fact, they are even more special to me as Johanna and I "met" each other by her sending me a handmade giveaway prize what seemed to be so many summers ago. :)

well, Johanna and I were suppose to announce the winners of the giveaways on the morrow, but as it is my birthday and the only time we could draw them was to-day, this is the time we decided upon announcing them. before I announce the winners, however, I am going to present the rules {{please read carefully}} ::

{one} winners have a week to claim their prize within the time of announcement else a new winner will be drawn. 

{two} winners must contact me with their
e-mailing address, 
blog url {in case e-mailing does not work},
 and home address
 in their message here and not on this post. 
please leave us a comment telling us you have sent this message.

{three} if sponsors do not contact you within the next few weeks, please let us know. 
unfortunately, not every sponsor keeps to their commitment, thus if a sponsor continues to not to reply to messages nor sends the winner her prize, we hold no responsibility, but will try to get in touch with the them every way possible. yet, we need your help to send your messages promptly.

{four} giveaway winners listed below will not be permitted to enter the next two giveaways posted here.

:: winners of the "tea time" giveaway:: 

winner of the lovely fall, cupcake poster is...
comment #4 
Miss Eden Mckoy!!!

winner of the pumpkin, tea cup necklace is...
comment #21 
Miss Romi!!! 

and finally, winner of the lovely fall tea cozy is...
comment #28 
Miss Emily Ruth!!!!

:: winners of the "seal of friendship" giveaway :: 
winner of this lovely harvest card is...
comment #26 
Miss Kendra Lynne!!!

winner of these darling sticker seals is...
comment #71 
Miss Samantha!!!

winner of this lovely, purple Celtic braided crocheted headband is...
comment #130 
Miss Hannah!!!

and finally, winner of ONE of these lovely hairclips is...
comment #72
Miss Shannon!!! 

:: winners of the "harvesting sunshine" giveaway ::

winner of the beautiful bird print is...
comment #52 
Miss PolkaDot!!!

winner of this lovely, butterfly ring is...
comment #16 
Miss Bekah!!!

winner of these lovely gold earrings is...
comment #85 
Miss Bethany!!!

:: winners of the "sugar n' spice" giveaway :: 
winner of the darling, pumpkin pie candle is...
comment #31 
Miss Cassie!!!

winner of this lovely pumpkin pie slice necklace is...
comment #93
Miss Grace!!!
{not me, though. :)}}

:: winners of the "aroma of autumn" giveaway :: 
winner of these scrumptious-looking, oh-so-yummy, sugar scrub cubes is...
comment #87 
Miss Nina!!!

winner of a single slice of this delicious pumpkin spice soap is...
comment #132 
Miss Julia!!!

and because every girl in this giveaway had already won something, we randomly chose another winner for this bottle of perfume {winner's choice}...

comment #11
Miss Grace!!!
{again, not me!!! :D}

and finally...
:: winners of "pulling out the knitting needles" giveaway :: 
winner of this PDF earwarmer pattern is...
comment #79 
Amy Caroline!!!

winner of FIVE PDF patterns {winner's choice} from Bonita Patterns is...
comment #45 
Belle + Bee!!!

AND FINALLY, winner of the lovely craft bag + smiley face stitch markers {{winner's choice of removable or snag-free}} is...
comment #92
Miss Lily!!!

congratulations, ladies!!!!!!!!!!

we pray you are blessed by your prizes. 
and special SPECIAL thanks to our wonderful sponsors who make these fun giveaways possible. 

a stroll in the woods.

i was in my garden one day, enjoying the last traces of summer cloaked in the beauty of autumn's radiance by going on a long stroll. 
the wind twirled my locks, and i closed my eyes, embracing it... 

opening my eyes i beheld a worn path wrapped in tall grass that had long since dried out. the sweet, subtle scent of the tall grass filled my nostrils, and the wind lead me to follow the mysterious path I had never seen before. 

forward it lead me, tugging at my scarf and hair until I picked up my leisurely pace and raced through the meadow. onward, onward I ran - er - flew through the rustling grass, my heart beating as wildly as the wind. until i stumbled onto a soft bed of leaves, giggling and sighing and drinking in the moment of complete bliss. 
when I opened my eyes again, a path wound through an old forest I had only heard grew along by garden's edge, but never thought to explore. gently, the wind whispered into my ear, and I cautiously followed the call. 

the crisp *crunch* of leaves under my boots echoed in the silence. the solemn cry of a majestic raven responded to the rustle trees above. i cast a glance behind me to see how far I had lingered into the forests mouth, only to find a small glint of sunlight from the world outside. but the wind encouraged me onward, onward i followed. 

the silence remained. not even the wind stirred. yet anxiously i waited. as though i knew something wonderful was about to happen. and slowly the curtain of deep, eerie darkness begin to lift as brilliant beams of fire burst through the forest canopy...

leaving behind a gorgeous array of ginger, scarlet, and gold replacing every bit of darkness. 

again and again I twirled, drinking in all the wondrous color that surrounded me. the wind showered leaves of gold upon me. 

and I whispered a small prayer of thanks into the wind to the heavens above, 
that I could be witness of so much majesty.   

   {{all images via pinterest}}

Oct 23, 2011

autumn joy.

it's in scarlet. in gold. in deep coffee browns. in crimson. in gingers. in auburns. in colour. 

it's the season we call autumn. once a year the leaves quiver in a crisp breeze, nodding their dainty heads compliantly as autumn gently leaves her kiss... 

the trees are also adorned with jewels as red as rubies shimmering in the sunlight...

knitted goods beckon to be nestled into by the fireside...

the autumn air makes the leaves dance and giggle, twirling their frocks to the beat of the wind...

draping their beauty across the barren ground...

to everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven. 
{{ecclesiastes 3:1}}

{{images via pinterest}}

Oct 21, 2011

an afternoon playing checkers.

there are those certain moments that I am blessed to experience and to tuck into my memory, but even more so to capture with the lens...