Blessings Among the Banes: Forced~Tech~Hiatus


Hello my kind friends! I wanted to check in and let you know that my blog has been quiet for these past days due to technical difficulties, i.e., my computer was on the blink!! At first the problem was intermittent...working fine then, unexpectedly, the entire computer would shut down/turn off. The next day it started up again and worked well for a short while then...shut off again! (So frustrating, especially when you are in the middle of uploading something! Happily, it's still under warranty.:) After a visit to the tech doctor, and a nice vacation from me, it's feeling much better and back home where it belongs!!!

I'm looking forward to catching up on all your lovely blogs and...hopefully...posting soon on a few "Order from Chaos" projects I took care of while on my forced~tech~hiatus!
This was the up~side of a frustrating situation. :)

Wishing a happy and safe holiday weekend to all

Good thoughts and love from...

Tracey and Family


a Magic Box...Egg {Cartons} of Creation...more HomeSpun Alchemy™

Each year...

when seed~starting time begins...

we're faced with the puzzle of where to place them. This year...that problem was blissfully solved in a creative and frugal the simple act of re~purposing one (of three) glass and wood display boxes...all were found at an estate sale for only a few dollars each!

Using a small amount of elbow grease, paint and time it was transformed into an enchantingly useful miniature green house...

a grow box...

an atrium~like magic environment that allowed those tiny little seeds room...light...and love enough to sprout and grow!


Here's how simple it was.

1.We washed the boxes with a damp cloth of vinegar and water.

2. Next we taped off the glass areas for easier clean~up then we...painted!

3. Once was lined with brown paper (from a Trader Joe's bag) and our young seedlings were set inside. The box was then set atop a small, south~facing table in our nook! FYI: We used an existing hinge on the arm to keep the lid propped open, thus ensuring proper air circulation (to avoid the development of mold).

Hint: A thrifted, stainless creamer was the perfect solution for making watering our seedlings simple and efficient.

Practical Magic...

and Earthly Delights Sprouting from Recycled Egg Cartons!

I'm always amazed at the ABUNDANCE of

Mundane Miracles and Frugal Luxuries we are offered daily...

if we but look !!!

Hope you're enjoying the gifts found in the mundane miracles of spring...and life!

Sending good thoughts and love to you all!!!


Tracey and Family



Naked Umbrellas and Magic Beanstalks!


A Re~Used Umbrella Frame Transforms Into a...

Charming Garden Bean~Trellis!

Our friend Cindy McNatt at Dirt du Jour is constantly uncovering clever and unique ways to create a frugally luxurious garden! Her most recent find is this ultra creative bean~trellis from a discarded umbrella frame. To find out more click HERE !


More...Order from Chaos™

Our ongoing quest to create Order from Chaos seems to be never ending! Here is a peek of some of the creative ways we're trying to organize our treasures using what we have on hand.

Images 1 and 2: Re~Purposed Vintage Baskets hold cherished bits of ribbon and lace.

Image 3: Vintage reproduction HAT STAND is transformed into a charming ribbon organizer! (Thanks to my kind friend...Cindy Villareal...for sharing this creatively useful idea with me many years ago!)

We're off now, to work on making some sense of the vintage silver plate we have cluttering about! Have a lovely weekend and a very happy Mother's Day to all of you who nurture offspring of one kind or another!

Love and good thoughts from,
Tracey and Family

P.S. Any "use what you have" organizing suggestions and/or inspirations are always warmly welcome and...of course...sorely needed!


This Month's Winner Is . . . !


please accept an enormous

Thank You

along with our warm appreciation for joining in our band of kindred spirits and playing our giveaway games!!! (Another will be posted in a few days!)


we send our warmest Congratulations out to...

Clarice...from Storybook Woods!!!

Her name was chosen as the winner of this month's give~away!


As promised, here are a few more images captured at our friend LeAnna's wedding shower last Saturday!

This simple cup and saucer was transformed into

a charming bird feeder for the garden! (Above.) Paula's small, raised~bed garden shows us that it doesn't take much space to grow vegetables in your own back yard. This little blue treasure is growing corn, zucchini, tomatoes and more! (Below.)

(That's my darlin' Katie hovering in the background!)


A Luminous Garden...Showering Love and Light

(A computer~generated sticker was used to personalize the gift box!)

Our friend LeAnna...and her
fiance' Pete are

...getting married!!!

Last Saturday Katie and I were invited to celebrate LeAnna's upcoming wedding by showering her with love...light...and lots of laughter...along with her family and friends!


(These stepping stones are from recycled concrete...we LOVE the moss!)

We followed this charming path to find...


the lovely bride~to~be...LeAnna and...friends!

(A toast to the bride~to~be!)

(The luncheon table was elegant... yet simple!)

(Part of the winning team, LaToya and Shannon! They whooped our side of the table in a game of "Wedding Taboo"!)

(Simple linen napkins in charming beaded rings...gorgeous turquoise mats...unadorned china, silver & glass.)

We enjoyed our delicious lunch...nestled beneath a Bougainvillea~draped pergola!

(We fell in love with Paula's water and lemonade carafes.)

(Our hostess, Paula, and Chef Johnny.)

(Katie stepped aside as she said "Mom, get a picture of these amazing turquoise blue doors!!!

And so...I did!)

It was a lovely day where kindred spirits and new friends met to celebrate (and feast!).

Paula's cottage and garden are so lovely...very creative. She graciously put up with us as we took an over abundance of pictures in and of it. (Thank you Paula!). We will post more of them later in the week.

I'm off now to whittle away at my ongoing quest to create "Order from Chaos"!!! More soon my kind friends.

Good thoughts and love to you!


Tracey and Family


P.S. Tomorrow we will tell who won the book giveaway and...announce a new one!

The original "FRUGAL LUXURIES" ~ Based on the books by Tracey McBride ~ Established 1993

A warm Thank You to all kind souls and kindred spirits who generously take the time to leave a comment...your encouragement, trust and support are deeply appreciated...please know that we read each and every message and will respond as time allows.


Frugal Luxuries
is a registered trademark.


"FRUGAL LUXURIES: Simple Pleasures to Enhance Your Life and Comfort Your Soul" was written by Tracey McBride and published by Bantam Books, NY, in 1997. It was the first of its genre to synergize the elements of simplicity, frugality and gracious living.

After more than a decade, FRUGAL LUXURIES has never been out of print and is now more relevant than ever.

"It's our hope that a new generation, faced with a teetering economy, will also find this information helpful and enlightening."

Sending Good Thought to Our Special Band of Kind and Kindred Souls!

Frugal Luxuries Book I

Frugal Luxuries by the Seasons Book II

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