Dear Diary…Day 17…of 27 things in 27 Days challenge…


Today, as I continue to shred old papers, credit cards, and the endless sea of paper clutter, I think that it is high time to purify some of the spaces that I have managed to clear with a smudging and a blessing.

There are several ways to purify a space or do a Space Clearing, as Denise Linn has coined it.

Some people prefer burning Sage as it has many calming and energizing properties, and helps to send the negative energies on their way.

My daughter once pointed out to me, that at a gathering of her friends, someone lit some sage to scent and purify the room.  She noticed that the conversations grew more intimate and heart felt as the curling smoke wafted it’s way through the room.


Sage bundles with Abalone shell


Sage bundles are readily available to purchase online, and in most health food stores.

After you have cleaned your room, light your sage, and carry it in a fire proof container.  You can use a wand of feathers, or your hand to wave over the sage as you walk through the room.  As you do this, think of all of the blessings that you would like this room, and the people dwelling here to experience.

The ground I am on is holy ground.  I now expand rapidly into the divine plan of my life, where all conditions are permanently perfect. Florence Scovill Shinn

If you would like to know my secret recipe for smudging, as not every one in my family loves the smokey air, read on…..


This is my own personal recipe, that is non-toxic, and smells heavenly!

Here’s what you will need:

  1.  an empty glass spray bottle
  2. Rose water from the Meditteranean market. (costs about $2.50
  3. Orange blossom water from the same market.
  4. Essential oils, tangerine, lime, and cedarwood

Using a funnel pour into bottle to fill half way the rose water, then continue filling with the orange blossom water.  Sprinkle 10 drops each of Lime and Tangerine, and 5 drops of Cedarwood oils.  shake well


There are other brands of the flower essence waters, but I have found these to be the most fragrant.  They are also edible, and can be used in puddings and cakes for flavoring. Yumm!

The floral essences are made by distilling the orange blossoms, or rose petals in water.  Natural aromas carry the Life force of the plant and bring the powerful energy of Nature into your home.  And these are non-toxic.  You can use them in place of commercial room sprays, as they are made from pure, natural ingredients.


With the essence, you can play around and create your own, by using essential oils that you have on hand.  I do not recommend using Essential Oils in your food.

I also like to spritz this spray on my body as a wonderful Eau de Toilette!  It’s Heavenly!


I just re-use the bottle.

I hope you try my recipe.  And if you don’t have the ingredients mentioned above, and you would like to perform a purifying ritual for your room, you can use filtered water with a little sea salt in it.  Even clapping every corner of the room, saying your prayers and blessings will work to bring in a beautiful cleansing energy.


Please let me know how this worked for you.  And don’t forget to sign up so you don’t miss a post!

You saw this blog post first on Cottage Necessities.

Cottage Necessities




Dear Diary…Day 20…27 Day Feng Shui Challenge

Today, I tackled paper clutter!  No one ever told me that coming across old paperwork from past employment, could bring up so many feelings.  Some good, some not so good.

Paper clutter is just as draining as anything else that no longer serves me.  Time to let go of those old memories that I no longer wish to carry around in my psyche and bring in the new!


I basically have an old fashioned shredder that I place over the trash can, and shred away.

The thought occurred to me that this could be a pretty boring post, so I thought I would share how I did a make-over on my letter holder from India.


I love these old carved pieces with inlay design.  The patterns are so intricate, and they are done by hand.  I just wanted to bring the beautiful floral pattern out to show it off more.

I had seen something similar in an import store nearby.

I brought it home, loaded a chip brush with some off-white chalk paint.  I was careful to scrape most of the paint off the brush, so that it was almost like a “dry brush” technique.

Then I just ran the brush across the surface, only touching the top of the design, so that you could see the contrast of the wood with the paint.  Once it was dry, it was ready to use.


I love the lacey pattern that it made. Who knew that it would pick up some of the pattern in the armoire that it sits next to?  You can see how I painted the armoire here, Room Re-set challenge part 4.  I know, my desk is pretty scratched up.  But it’s a utility desk, and that doesn’t bother me.  Also, once I oiled down my desktop with dark wax by Annie Sloan, it pretty much disappeared.


I let some natural light in to get a better shot, but it has been pretty gloomy lately, with the rain and all.

Today’s affirmation:  I am an irresistible magnet for checks, bills and currency – for everything that belongs to me by Diving Right.  Florence Scovill Shinn

Do what you can, with what you have, with where you are. Theodore Roosevelt

Cottage Necessities


Dear Diary…Day 21…count down of the 27 day feng shui challenge


March Planner

Wow!  7 Days have passed, and I’ve been busy clearing, organizing, and purifying my home of unwanted things.

Today, I took out 27 items to recycle!

Yesterday, I went out to sell some gold jewelry that I never wear.

While I was out, I received a text that a friends company was hiring.

I told her that I would bring my resume in the following day, and hopefully get a chance to speak with the manager.

So many people, like my son! just think I’m a dreamer.  As long as they continue to think that way, and not dig deeper by trying these things out,  they may never know how we can work with the Universal Laws.

Now, as I am making room for” what is mine” to come into my life, the results are beginning to present themselves, in “unseen ways”.  That’s why it is so important to trust!


It’s important that we still do our part.

  1. We have to set our intentions of what we want
  2. Write our goals down so that we can review them
  3. Continue with the process of removing the items that drag us down
  4. Have faith that what is ours will come in perfect timing and perfect abundance
  5. Keep a positive mind-set so that our life is flowing.  Negative thoughts will block our progress.

My daughter got me started with journaling, using the Washi tape and stickers, when I was in Hawaii.  We had so much fun.  She would pull out all of her endless supply of stickers and Washi tape, colored pens, and we would get busy planning our coming months.

I didn’t know what a big deal it was, until I had a conversation with a lady in the local hobby store.  She admitted that she had more that 300 rolls of Washi Tape!  She was addicted!

I’ve come to believe that Beautifying our journal/planner can be another form of visioning and feng shui.  Our lives can work on a higher order when we are actively writing down our intentions, dreams, and ambitions.

And using the colorful patterns can only bring more joy!


Inspiration for a little night stand.


I’m becoming more clear on what I want for my life as I go through this process.  Only 7 Days have passed, and I’ve already had so many wonderful experiences.

Cottage Mavens, I do hope that you will give this process a try.  It can only benefit you in Miraculous Ways!

Today’s affirmation:  I am undisturbed by appearances.  I trust in God – and He now brings to me the desires of my heart.  My good now overtakes me in a surprising way.  ( Florence Scovill Shinn) 


Day 22…Dear Diary….27 Things in 27 Days

Today, pick an area on the Bagua that you want to work on.  Or look at the Bagua below, and determine which area of the room has more clutter.  It could be a sad picture, a dead or dusty plant, a stack of old magazines that occupies the space. Think about how that makes you feel.  As we get in touch with every item that we choose to occupy our space, and place more value on how it affects us,  it will be much easier to let these things go.

If you haven’t been following along, read this, 27 Days to the next Miracle to catch up.

Your house is your larger body.  Kahlil Gibran 

Lay this grid over your room. The door of the room should be along the bottom of the page.

Today, I organized my tool box.  It sits in my Fame and Reputation area.  I found a bunch of new batteries that I didn’t know I had.  So I put them in a drawer where I keep batteries.

That’s one way that this process can bring prosperity into our lives.  By finding things that we already have!


I also found a new supply of soap! I reorganized the linen closet and tossed a set of sheets and some old cosmetics.

So, off I go, to donate another bag to charity.  I feel good about helping others by donating things that I have once loved, that no longer serve me.

P.S. I draw the line at holey underwear, mismatched socks, and old cosmetics.  They go into the trash!

Note to self:  Drink plenty of water during this process.  It’s all a part of the cleanse.

Have nothing in your home that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.  William Morris

Today I will thank my house and all of the items that I take out the door!

Cottage Necessities





How to Decoupage a Lamp with napkins



I made a comment the other day that “Every corner of my house warms my soul”.  One of my readers commented on it, and made me realize that I have some corners that DO NOT.

If you have a plain ceramic or wood lamp, and you would like to make it pretty, then read on…


I started by gathering some pretty napkins ( you could also use fabric) , a wood base lamp, (you could also use ceramic), and modpodge and a small chip brush.

I find the best napkins at Tuesday Morning.  They have tons!

I start by painting the base white or off-white.


Once I have selected my napkins, I tear back the extra layers, so I have only the top to work with.




Then I cut the images or shapes that I want to place on my lamp.  In this case, I am choosing to cover the entire lamp with the napkin tissue.  There are no mistakes, so however you choose to place your napkin is up to you.  It’s the creative process.


next I brush the modpodge all over the lamp base.  You can work in smaller areas if it feels more comfortable to do it that way.


As I lay the images across the lamp base, I tap it down with a brush filled with more modpodge.



Oops!  I can fix that!


The napkins, when wet, can be delicate, but no worries!  I’ll show you how to patch this.  This is a collage.


I just cut out a little flower to fill in here.


You can also cut out borders, or other images to lay across the lamp base.

I don’t mind a few wrinkles.  But if you do, you might prefer to use the same technique using craft paper.  Here are some examples.

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You can do a final coat of modpodge to seal it all in and finish it off.  Have fun!

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Dear Diary…today is the 26th day of…

the 27 day challenge to clear 27 things from my life.


Today I cleaned my bedroom closet.  I removed 2 bags of stuff that I no longer need, have never worn, and that no longer serves me.

I was saving 3 items that I thought that I could sell.  They were hanging on my closet door.  Later in the evening, looking at them, I decided to add them to a new bag of stuff that I would donate.

I cannot tell you what a great feeling that gave me!  It seemed to have lifted something from my aura.  I had been carrying around one of those dresses for 35 years!

Once I discovered how great that felt, I decided to let go of 3 brand new scarves that I have never worn, or worn only once, because they make my neck too hot, and that style just doesn’t look good on me.

I organized all of my pillow making supplies, like needlepoints and crewel embroidery that I have collected, because I realized that I enjoy making pillows and selling them on my etsy store, Cottage Necessities.

That day I had two sales of pillows and pillow shams!

So, one thing I know for sure about my self is that I enjoy making pillows for people and that I don’t like wearing scarves on my neck.

Who knew it would be so hard to let go of some things?  And that it could feel so freeing when you do?  Note to self:  I need to trust the Universe more.

My affirmation for today is…

I see clearly my inexhaustible supply.  I see clearly just what to do!  Florence Scovel Shinn

P.S. tonight I listed some things that I found in my stash on my Etsy site.  Some pillows that I had made and never listed.  Sweet Dreams






It Takes a Village, or how I fixed my desk

With all the rain we’ve had lately, I’ve been staying inside more.

When I’m inside more, I have more time to look around the inside of my home, and analyze what I can do to improve things.

When I made a comment in a previous post that every corner in my house ” warms my soul”, I realized that it just wasn’t true!

I cannot look at every inch of the interior of my home and honestly say that it ” warms my soul”.

There are areas where things have piled up, like on my desk.


A Dull Dreary corner to be sure!

All of that time spent in Hawaii last year, made my desk at home last priority.  And looking at all of that mail that was piling up, was not on the top of my list when I was home.

I would just take care of the bills that needed to be paid, and leave the rest.

When I returned to Sacramento, the necessity of finding a J.O.B. was staring me in the face. I knew that Feng Shui had helped me in the past, and this corner needed to be addressed!

From a Feng Shui perspective, my desk is in the “Helpful People and Travel” area.

No wonder my travels had come to a halt!  There was too much clutter in that corner.


Prosperity corner

The helpful people area is also diagonally across from the “Prosperity ” corner, where my refrigerator sits. The reason I bring this up, is because diagonal opposites on the Bagua must be addressed because they work in synchrony.

The first week home, I cleaned out the refrigerator, without even thinking about Feng Shui.


But my mind kept falling on the desk.

So I got out the paint, and it didn’t take long to realize that it was in need of repair.


It was coming apart at the seams!

When I first bought this desk, it was kind of an impulse buy.

Recognizing the solid wood construction, the dovetail joinery on the drawers, I knew it would give good service.  I took it home and gave it a major clean up. ( It had been sitting in someone’s garage ).   I figured it just needed some  “elbow grease”.

But after being moved a few times it was beginning to pull apart at the joints, the drawers were sagging, it was cracked at one of the seams on the side, and was crying out for help!

I decided to paint it a  creamy white and leave the top natural, as it had a tough coat of varnish on it already and was in pretty good shape.


I needed two more of these!


But as I painted, the closer I looked and I knew it needed more than just paint.

I was kind of baffled as to how to go about “shoring it up”.

So, I put out an A.P.B. (all points bulletin) on Facebook, calling in anyone that I knew with woodworking skills who would be willing to help. I said “Please private message me if I know you”.

I received two messages!  A friend from high school contacted me and we discussed what could be done by phone.  He offered to come out if necessary.

My cousin Judy also messaged me and offered some advice.

Then I noticed some parts were missing, sent a photo to my friend, and he said he could whip some up in his garage, and I could pick them up.


I turned the desk on it’s side, put the new pieces in place, and tried using the hammer to get it back together.   I ended up breaking the end at a seam.  So, I asked my son to help me and he gently encouraged the joints to go back to their original position, and I glued everything into place, weighed it down with some heavy books and let it rest.

This is what I learned:

  1.  If a piece of furniture has good bones, is made of solid wood, and is well made, then it’s worth saving.
  2. If you bang on furniture with a hammer, chances are you might break something. Duh!
  3. When in doubt or out of your own area of expertise, contact your local Villagers.  But use common sense.
  4. Take a second and third look at something to figure out what it needs.




Stay tuned for next time, when I show you how I decoupaged my lamp!  Sign up so you don’t miss a post!


Thanks for stopping by!  Cottage Necessities