The little birds...

If you watch little birds you will see they are busy and happy! Using whatever they can find they create the most gorgeous little nest.
I would be the little bird with some glittery thread in her nest!
We can be like this. Happily working away with the things that are available to us to create a beautiful and happy home.
All the while with a little song in our heart.

Banner by Free Pretty Things for You.

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

The Christmas Challenge. Make your own tea chest.

Kelley has saved me again this week! I had been in hospital three mornings this week and am finally back to oral antibiotics. I think we are getting somewhere now.
But my crafts and gifts are not getting somewhere at all!

So it is with gratitude I share with you another one of Kelley's crafts that she sent me.  I just love this and many of us could use it for ourselves or for a gorgeous gift!  I hope you enjoy it as much as me!

Over to Kelley....

I bought this old jewelry box at a thrift store several years ago for a couple dollars.  I planned to store sewing notions in it when we lived in the Philippines because the sun there was murder on anything in my Inspiration Station.  Honestly, it sat empty for five years.  (That’s not a very dutiful handmaiden is it, Laine?)




We moved to Guam last year, and in reorganizing my crafts, etc. for about 30 minutes this gutted old gem sat in the Give Away pile.  If she wasn’t going to perform any duties around here, out she goes...



…or on the other hand? I got the brilliant idea to repurpose it as a tea chest.  You know, those fancy tea chests that are brought to your five-star restaurant table when you want to order a cup of hot tea with your $40 dessert?  *chuckle*

So, with a a hot glue gun and some lovely tropical fabric scraps from my stash, the tea chest was outfitted with a refreshing new lining.  A cotton trim hid all the bar spots and cut edges and covered the old hinges.  Snips of ribbon and thumbtacks serve to keep the lid open.




I cut the stiff cardboard from the back of a large yellow steno pad to fashion tea chest dividers.  Complementary teal lace was hot glued to the top of the dividers’s cut edges.




I was practically giddy, filling the tea chest with a variety of delightful teabags!  As you can see, the new tea chest holds a lot of teabags, and I couldn’t get over how perfect the dimensions were for this project.

The exterior of the tea chest got a facelift, too.  Using a hot glue gun, the lid was embellished very simply with rectangles of fabric and batting and cotton lace trim.


Wouldn’t this make an ideal gift for the tea lover in your life?  We do lots of entertaining, and perching this happy little handmaiden out on the tea/coffee station at our dinner parties gives me such joy!  All the tea lovers, male and female alike, appreciate the variety of teabag offerings, but the ladies are especially delighted by the tea chest!  You’re going to be like them, aren’t you?  On the lookout for an old jewelry box!  Maybe you already own a special, sentimental one that used to be your mother’s or grandmother’s.  This would be a special way to put that little beauty to work as a beloved handmaiden in your home.

*hugs*
Kelley~

This all is just perfect! Turning something about to be thrown out into something lovely! And kind of luxurious too!  Any tea drinker would love this.  Thank you Kelley!  Your post last week attracted so many comments!  This is the sort of inspiration we need. Use something up... many of us are on "use it up" challenges. 

How is your gift making going?  I have a really good list of projects I am wanting to work on. For us soon it will be autumn and this is a great time to get into some crochet and sewing.  Usually I get so much done then. So I will make up for lost time! xxx


47 comments:

  1. Dear Annabel
    Please do not put pressure on yourself, it is going to take some time to get over these bites. Look for easy gift ideas that you can mass produce with little effort.

    I know that you like to give, abundantly, but everyone will be just as thankful for 1 item and some home baked items than have you seriously ill in hospital.

    Love


    Lynette
    XXXXX

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lynette is right, Annabel. We're all praying for you in Bluebird Nation. The bluebirds that pray together stay together.

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  2. Hi Annabel,

    I am very glad to hear that you aren't having to trek to the hospital(!!!) anymore for your antibiotics. I know what you mean about slow progress on the gift front. I made a toque and scarf for my Dad for Christmas or birthday to put in the gift tub last month (but didn't get a photo taken for your Challenge), and this month I knit several hats to be given out to the homeless in Halifax from all of my leftover chunky Icelandic wool. I was in such a buzz to get them done and ready to give out seeing as how our weather was turning really nasty, that I didn't take any photos of those, either. I also knit a pair of gloves for my Mother's birthday, and yes, forgot to take a photo before they HAD to get posted to be there in time. I'm hoping to get some more things done (and photographed!) before next week, but I've gone and cut a finger that I use for knitting, so my progress is pretty slow right now. It's almost better, and I'm hoping I'm back at it soon, because I don't have a good book on the go, either, right now, and twiddling thumbs in the evening is NOT my style...and if I don't get crafting soon, I might crack! :) I LOOOOOOOVE the tea chest idea! How inventive! I was also drooling at some of the tea flavors, too! :)

    Lots of love, Annabel, and keep taking care of yourself!

    xxJen in NS

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    Replies
    1. Jen,

      I am at Mother's on the mainland for a month as she has a cancerous kidney removed Friday. She and I were just discussing how, like yourself, I CANNOT just sit either. Honestly, I, too, would crack-crack-crack. I absolutely love how you, a Proverbs 31 woman, are doing what you can as you reach toward those in need. Oh, you shall reap what you've SEWN!

      Sew on!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
    2. Kelley, when my mom was hospitalized after her stroke, I embroidered 12 detailed squares for a quilt my ladies group at church was making. When I finished them, the other ladies put them together and we ended up using the quilt in a drawing. When they went to name it, they asked me and I jokingly said, "Debby's Stress Therapy". That project kept me from going crazy. And, it raised over $1000.

      Blessings to you and your mom.

      Delete
    3. Debby,

      Such a meaningful, lovely idea. I sure would love to see that beautiful piece, "Debby's Stress Therapy." I'm certain it was amazing. I hope some fortunate person is enjoying its use to the hilt and beyond!

      Thanks for dropping by to comment. Bluebird Nation is the best!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  3. This is so smart and really not too hard to do. I love these posts on how to redo things we normally would throw away. We need to just look at things differently.

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    Replies
    1. Vickie,

      You hit the nail on the head. Why, I look at SOO many other objects with "fresh eyes," asking, Hmmm. I wonder what else I could make with that... This little tea chest is so neat, and I'm grateful it will serve our home for many years to come!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  4. Annabel, please take care of yourself. Kelley, we all love our Annabel and anyone who helps her out in a time of need must be a pretty special person ... thank you for being that person during this time!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, yes, we sure do love our Annabel, Patsi. You're so right! I cannot imagine what's the culprit, but we know The One Who does. 🙏🏼 for Annabel!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  5. Dear Annabel

    Sorry to hear you are not well. There is a lot of unwellness going around up here at the moment. Please take sometime out for yourself to recover. I am sure all can wait till then. You are the most important thing here and that takes time to get back on your feet.

    Once again I am so far behind as we took a short break away as my Niece came to stay and sadly it is now less than 2 weeks till she has to return home.

    Congratulations on the birth of your second Grandaughter...such a joy to have a newborn in your lives. I had to scroll quickly through to catch up on this news. Absolutely gorgeous. I am sure big sister Harper is loving being a helper to her Mum.

    I am hoping to later catch up on this thread.....as like always around here school needs help..

    Take care of yourself
    Love Aly xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aly,

      Those are kind comments. We're all in agreement with you!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
    2. Dear Aly, Thank you! Enjoy the time with your niece! With love Annabel.xxx

      Delete
  6. Annabel I am pleased that you are letting others help you when you are feeling low.
    Kelley your tea box is such a lovely idea. I have a SIL that loves homemade gifts for Christmas. I have been scratching my head as to what I will make for her this year. I now know I will knit her a tea cosy and make a tea wallet for her. Kelley thank you for the inspiration.
    I have been making a crocheted blanket for Bluey for his Birthday in a couple of weeks. He thinks I am sticking to my use it up challenge and am making a blanket for a future little boy grandbaby. I have started running out of the beautiful wool, so have had to order some more online. I will have used all the wool by the time I finish the blanket.
    I was looking at some market type shopping bags, about the same size at the green bags at the Aussie supermarkets, at our local markets. The bags were gorgeous, made with patchwork on the exterior and a solid fabric on the interior. They were $40 each. I looked them up on Etsy and they were $50 each. I was shocked. Anyway I have now made two and these are in the present cupboard.
    Life is good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My, Jane!

      Productive, indeed! And your tea cosy/wallet ideas are inspiring! Thank you! I'm going to go Google the endless possibilities right now!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete


    2. Jane, I love the 'use it up' & 'crocheting for a future grandson' notions that your dear Bluey has about your work!! Men sure can be wonderful like this!!

      I hope you're enjoying your fishing kayak, too!! That sounds like fun!!

      Regards,
      Rachel

      Delete
  7. Hi Annabel. Hope you are soon feeling 100% again. Take good care. LOVE the beautiful tea chest. What a transformation! Thanks for sharing Kelley...very inspiring.
    Cheers, Jo

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    Replies
    1. Jo,

      Thank you for your kind comments. Hope your week's going well.

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  8. Hi Annabel and Kelley!!

    Firstly, Annabel, I am very impressed at how you keep such wonderful friends up your sleeve - now that sleeves are the thing in your life!! I hope you don't mind me saying, too, that we can almost not blame the little biters - because your beautiful bath products must make your skin smell so nice. It had to be worth a taste!!

    Now, Kelley, when I first read the title, I was hoping you would be showing me how you make a tea chest - you know, the large plywood boxes that tea was once shipped in?! I would have loved that!!!! Nevertheless, I also love cute timber boxes, and you have set yours up wonderfully! Thanks for beautifying our lives once more, and for investing in replies!! I think Annabel should declare you a life member of Bluebirds for your services rendered!! May we not tire of asking our Heavenly Father for His help. May our Rock be surety for good for your Mother. He is well able to rescue us!!

    Regards,
    Rachel Holt

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rachel,

      Your comments meant so much. Thank you for dropping them out way. Bluebird Nation is a country of kindred spirits. Just when you need a helping hand, an answer, a solution, SOMEone among us is there. We've all learned-- and are learning-- so much, aren't we?

      *hugs* from Missouri, USA,
      Kelley~

      Delete
  9. Hi Annabel and Kelley,

    Annabel,it was such good news to read that the IV antibiotics have done their work and that you will no longer need them.

    Kelley, thank you for sharing the lovely tea chest.It's so much fun to look at something not for what it is but what it can become. You've done an amazing job. I also hope you got the tips on the quilt batting from the other day. We continue to remember, your mom, all medical personnel that will be involved in her care and you, in our prayers. Blessings, Cookie





    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, Cookie! I did NOT yet read the batting tips. SO glad you mentioned them!

      You're so thoughtful to leave the kind comments. We're all rejoicing with you about Annabel's improvement. It's truly a "case in point," isn't it? To be ahead of the game so that when pauses occur, they don't slay us. So grateful for all that Annabel and Bluebird Nation has taught us, too!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  10. Once again a lovely project Kelley! :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Annabel,Kelley and lovely Bluebirds,
    Continued prayers for Annabel,Kelley's Mom and the doctors,Also Glenda. Gods healing,grace and comfort.
    Such a lovely tea chest! Now I will be thinking of repurposing, Such fun.
    Hugs to all,
    Patti

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    Replies
    1. Patti,

      So glad you were inspired today. Thanks for your prayers for Glenda, Annabel and my precious mother. Her first surgery (a nephrectomy) is Friday, the 24th. After recovering from that, she will have a mastectomy.

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  12. Kelley? Is this you? I have been missing you in blogland! I happened upon your post over at Strangers and Pilgrims. I need to make one of these, and I have an old box that would work perfect! Thank you for the excellent suggestion on how to make one! Hugs to you, and hope you are doing well!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is Kelley from Kelley Highway... so yes I think so! How lucky am I to have her here! Thank you! I would love to see how your tea chest turns out! Love Annabel.xxx

      Delete
    2. Me, too, Idaho! Like I explained to Annabel recently, I had started a new blog, Mentor Me Home, about 18 months after deleting Kelley Highway, but I just don't have it prioritized in me at all.

      I went to your blog recently to check up on you. Great to "see" you here in Bluebird Nation's nest! I have "known" Annabel since she had about 3.6 followers-- haha. Is she a great teacher and inspiration, or what?! No wonder so many are following and learning from her wisdom as a godly Titus 2 lady. Bluebirds! What a bunch!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~
      mrskjdibble@juno.com

      Delete
  13. Annabel,
    I hope your arm is on the mend and you will be back to your perky self soon. Bites and infections are so very draining. HUGS!!
    Kelley,
    How very clever your tea box is! I love projects that use things that may have been tossed. You do very nice work indeed!
    XOXO
    Vicky

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Vicky! All the best!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  14. So glad to hear that your arm is improving Annabel.

    Kelley, that tea chest is amazing. I have an old cigar box and am thinking to cover that as a gift for a friend, though it needs to be done by Sunday, better get started. I hope your mother feels better soon.

    Jane, I made a shopping bag last year for a gift swap, it was lined and included a couple of pockets for a notebook and phone,and
    intend making myself a couple.
    Margaret

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    Replies
    1. Margaret,

      That sounds like an excellent idea, to repurpose the cigar box (as long as the scent of cigar has gone). You could put a neat latch on it with all manner of items: a button, a stick through a loop, a Chinese frog, wow. So many possibilities. Sure wish we could see what you do. Hopefully you'll share it with Annabel and all the rest of the Bluebird Nest!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  15. Dear Annabel, thankyou for sharing Kelley's beautiful teabox.
    kelley -it's gorgeous! I love material and colours and I can picture where you live through that print.I bought a plain white teabox from kmart here, after seeing one at my son's place when I visited last year.Visitors comment on it too , but they haven't seen yours ;-)
    Annabel,I hope you continue to improve and regain your usual health .
    Meanwhile I will also add here that I looked at the link to Jes's bathroom makeover ,and its so fresh and pretty and practical.Thankyou Jes for your inspiration.
    With love Maria xxx
    PS Annabel I have white cupboard envy, after seeing your medical storage makeover.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maria,

      Thank you so much for your sweet comments! Would love to see your little teabox!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  16. I am glad you are on the mend!

    Kelley, I love it! Yes, I am on the hunt for an old jewelry box!

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    Replies
    1. Lana,

      I wish you He best in your hunt for an old jewelry box!

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  17. Annabel, make sure you're getting enough rest to let your body fight off that nasty bite!

    Kelley, your tea chest is wonderful! The fabric is so cheerful and seems like it goes so well with tea. Exotic!
    Isn't it so much fun to repurpose something and love the way it turns out?! Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Debby,

      I live on the tropical island of Guam, and have tropical fabrics throughout my home, so the 'new' tea chest is perfect. When we retire in about 14 years, we want to land in Arizona somewhere. The fabric could be ripped out and relined if I want to, couldn't it? Southwestern style. Fun!

      Thanks for dropping by to comment.

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  18. Thank you Annabel for posting this wonderful idea! And to you Kelley for sharing. I'm Glad you are taking care of yourself Annabel we are all praying for your speedy recovery...hugs to you! And my goodness Kelley your makeover is beautiful! I love it well done!! Love Gaila in Washington state

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    Replies
    1. Gaila,

      Thanks again for your kind comment. And we're all praying, like you said, for Annabel's speedy recovery.

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  19. Thank you everyone for your comments, well wishes and prayers. I have turned the corner and things have improved a lot. Thank you Kelley for such a gorgeous idea and sharing it with us and also for replying to comments! xxx

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    Replies
    1. Annabel,

      I have been anticipating such an update from you, that our Bluebirds' prayers have availed much. Be an informed, obedient (wife) patient-- a patient patient!-- and we'll continue to uphold you in prayer. For Andy and your family, too.

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete
  20. Hello Annabel and Kelley,
    Annabel, I am glad you have turned the corner and things have improved a lot. Take it slowly and rest up. It is more important that you get yourself back to 100%.
    Kelley, you are a gem for writing here. Your tea chest is absolutely beautiful. How luxurious and so unique. Love the tropical fabric (I live in a tropical climate too). Lots of love, Bridget (Bridge)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Bridget,

      Thank you for your kind comments. The tropics are the best, aren't they? We have a lot of fun.

      *hugs* to you,
      Kelley~

      Delete
  21. This is so lovely! I love how Kelly recycled and repurposed the box. I would be thrilled to receive such a treasure. :)

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    Replies
    1. Tracy,

      You're sweet.

      Mother opened her old jewelry box for me the other day and I was drifted back in time to girlhood. Mother's jewelry box is likely 65-70 years old and similar to this one that I gutted, but hers is a fraction of the size and a salmon color, darkened and patinaed by age and time. It's deliciously special.

      *hugs*
      Kelley~

      Delete

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