Thursday, December 23, 2010

Lovely lavender Verbena treats..

Ok here it is.....I have been getting requests for this can also substitute with gluten free flour & xylitol a great & healthy sugar subsitute.


2 T dried fresh lavender

1/4 T baking power

1/4 T salt

13/4 cups of flour

2/4 cups of sugar ( also xylitol great sugar substitute)

2 T grated lemon zest

2T juice of 1-2 lemons

1 1/2 sticks of unsalted butter cut in cubes

1 egg yoke

1/2 T Vanilla extract

OK get ready...combine in a food processer

sugar, lemon zest & lavender until mixed well. ( thirty seconds)

whisk dry ingredients together

flour, baking power & salt

add to sugar mixture

add butter cubes on top of mix pulse about 15 1 sec pulses will look like cornmeal

in a separate bowl whisk egg yoke, lemon juice & vanilla pour in mix

pulse about 10 seconds until it forms into a dough ball.

remove & shape into a cylinder 12" long 1/1/2 in in diameter

chill the dough untill firm ( 45 in frezer) 2 hours in fridge

preheat oven to 375

MUST line a baking sheet with parchment paper

slice about 3/8 thick not to thin or will burn

cook about ten min

edges will lightly brown

be sure to turn halfway when cooking.

remove cool on rack

My favorite part is packaging them. Do your thing.

I usually stack them in clear bags & throw a pinch of the lavender on top, tie kitchen twine, a handmade tag. Yum!!!
Nice to give as a gift with a fresh buch of lavender.

I also make a rosemary version.. let me know how it turns out.

xooxxo Verbena Girl

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A touch of Holiday Magic....

Standing outside my little shop this is what I see on Friday evenings..check out the old fashioned Ferris wheel in the background. This is Downtown Ocala durning the Holiday season. I think Cinderella would be happy here.
the famous Harry's Seafood Bar next to my shop

back view of the Square

night time window.. I did something different this year & did not put up a tree in my windows.. instead I painted my black candelabras white added those little flame lights & hung some beautiful handmade bird & holiday ornaments.

am I boring you...

How do I love thee....with every cherp...nest...egg...& every feather you pluck from me... Birds, nests, eggs always in stock.... I guess this is the place to get layed???? Just Kidding have a blog laugh!

another Verbena favorite hand embroidered belts for those with a bohemian soul..wish my waist was what is use to be....I want to wear one of these!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

rustic jewels we love....and love.... and love...

pretty papers illuminate your nest in the evening when these artisan candles are lite. We have been carrying these from day one.. they are a Verbena Favorite.... mine too! Oh they are unscented.

french soaps always greet your senses when you arrive in the shop. You may just find a few unexpected bars sitting on the bottom of your shopping bag when you get home....

this is one of my new original petite baguettes I have designed,crocheted & hand sewn. Available in four color combinations.

sparkle angel tags we tie on to our gifts.

We have a thing for teddy bears... well I do....they keep me company and you never know what they will be wearing...This one is Tallulah she is wearing a French Velvet bow tie.

a random shot in the shop

this picture should come after the one below oh well... up to the second floor... keep walking it's good for those legs!

The first landing introduces you to a beautiful stained glass window that leads up to the second floor. The narrow window on the left looks into the back of my shop... very high ceilings in this building.

gilded angel shelf

This original copy written image was designed for Verbena using my grandmothers Saint Theresa prayer card .... she is one of my favorites.. I get many requests to make my sacred treasures over sized linen & velvet sack bags from all over the world. This one I just finished making for a special lady who is a both & Dr & Carmalite. little details...

back pocket.

touches of antique lace all over... tucked inside is a small purse I make out of antique lace to hold your rosary beads or special treasure... I am playing with my new computer & had to figure out how to upload some pics...there you go.... my Nanny Sarah always wrote in her cards... and may God bless you always!!!!!! Wishing you special touches of magic this Holiday season. Remember the only way to get it is Believe & keep the faith!!!! Be back soon. xooxo Laura
P.S. Back again...I wanted to share my new crazy project.. I am in the process of opening up a second store further South of Ocala. I am very excited. I will have a partner a great partner. We have a great concept & new name I will keep you posted as we progress. We are starting to paint this weekend....lots of space the building is old & used to be an pharmacy still has the old apothecary shelves built in the wall.
Verbena will remain my baby with set hours after the first of the's time to take my dreams to the next level...Believe. xoox Laura

Friday, December 10, 2010

Beautiful Sacred Treasures...

Lady Madonna simply at her best....maybe it is my Catholic school upbringing...or spending weekends playing & hiding under my Nanny Sarah's bedroom alter..I have always been drawn to the beauty & spiritual feelings I get with the Blessed Mother/Madonna. You do not have to be Catholic to love her.
A while back when picking up my daughter from her friends home, I was invited to step inside.. and when I looked up in the entrance way.. my heart skipped a beat... my word I ran back in my car to get my camera... these are amazing original works of art from Venezuela.
I have been busy here sewing my Sacred Treasure sacks for the holidays so maybe I have Madonna dancing around in my head.

a special sacred treasures made from clay & cloth....she is such a sweet handpainted


original oil painting.

sending blessings to all you!

my camera does not show the true beauty of this incredible work of art...

this painting above stands approx. 15 ft tall & has a beautiful carved rosary embedded in the painting! Gilded & detailed with gold lace, words can not discribe how beautiful these are. I saved these for a special post.
Wishing you all everything Sacred this Holiday season & always. xoxoxo Laura

Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Frustrated Decorator... That's me!

Come on in.. take a seat...I will make you a cup of tea or maybe some fresh pressed coffee? I really would if you were here. This is what I love about blogging.. sharing my thoughts, pictures & venting whatever I want to share with you all. This post is about being a Frustrated Decorator.. I started a new group on FB that I think will be fun & will be starting a new blog as well. My mission is too creatively connect those who share the same passion but need help, have questions & love to look at pictures & post ideas...we will have interesting & talented designers who Will participate in this Group. Have a decorating dilemma you will be able to come over to The Frustrated Decorator FB page post a before picture & turn your decorating frustrations into decorating sensations. And much more. I find there is so much craftiness out there maybe a little too much for me at this time... I do love it all but my first & favorite passion is decorating. Don't you just love more then anything looking at home decorating magazine pictures, beautiful blogs & just shopping for great pieces. When ever I see a beautiful room on a blog or in a magazine I just feel so indescribable.. do you know what I mean? That feeling of excitement that makes you want to get up stand back in your romm & say mmmm I can make this room look better or mmmm again now where are those cardboard pieces so I can start moving stuff around. (No man here just cardboard) I really do get very inspired by it all. I think most of us have the same passion. I know you do. I love all the fresh new designs being shown... the Swedish rooms , farm houses, modernness, French Elegance... I love it all.. I don't know how to describe my style my dear friend Dore who I adore calls it Gypsy Brocante villa chic... yea that's me with a touch of the monastery look? Is there such a thing? The Frustrated Decorator will be a fun group to share & creatively connect with others . It's great on FB you can post a picture of a room ,comment & you never know who will stop by & give you great tips. So relax & take a peek at some of the things I have done to my home...I have a long way to go.. but that's all the fun... it never ends for us Frustrated Decorators.

A great find for the week. I picked this up at a local thrift shop for $20.00 it's painted distressed & has a washed burlap coffee sack bag as a seat.
a peek into our music/reading room my design dilemma with such high ceilings is what to do over my book case so I layered old picture frames on the side of a big old picture I have had for years. This is where The Frustrated Decorator Group will come in handy.
morning sunlight.. this beautiful mantel needs help above.. this is where The Frustrated Decorator Group will come in handy again. Any thoughts? Lovey urns & bigger mirror...
Just a random shot of my dining area not together this was the day before Thanksgiving this is behind the cozy sitting area you will see below. The gold curtains were here so I am working with them. I think I might have a chair addiction... do you.. way too many, different kinds I would get rids of some of them maybe just keep & paint my old Windsors... Paint Them?
just a small gathering of some bottles & placed on my vintage wooden cake stand. Yes that is a pumpkin top I placed on top of the old milk bottle. My sweet & beautiful friend Tracie makes beautiful things just like her. Her shell top bottle filled with stones & sand from France is nestled with some of my bottles that I collect. They are all over my home.
this is the after the bottom picture was the before sorry my dyslexia is kicking in. added a larger rug, the table is the bottom of an old stove. Placed a tray on top ( for now) & cover it with an old piece of linen...moved the chairs together added some pillows & oh the wine.. I think a glass is good for your creative juices.
I posted the above Before picture on FB last night needing a decorating fix. So after I pulled in some of my porch furniture wanting to create a cozy sitting area in my kitchen asking for some advise on fb one cool lady Deb Kennedy (do you know her you should she is amazing) commented & gave me some great tips, I started moving furniture around retaking pictures & posting the afters.
My mom is the creative genius behind designing the bones to this beautiful house. I will be featuring her fabulous home as my first post on the new blog The Frustrated Decorator. The Mexican octagon shaped pavers are my favorite... except when I am standing on them for hours cooing or cleaning.
As you enter the main room to your left I placed my old bench that was given to me as a gift from a customer as a thank's got that perfect patina shade of greys.
My decorating dilemma was what to put above the bench. I wanted something different maybe architectural... a giant clock....didn't have any of that here so working with what I have & looking around my stash this is what I came up with.

The frustrated decorator at work late at night....... my favorite old French Shutters that's it! I also added my carved putti above I placed one of my birds nests on top. Do they look crooked? Should l I add some of my signature clay big rosaries on the shutters maybe too much this is where i get frustrated. I think I like it. What do you think? Well it's me.. That Gypsy Village chick oh I mean The Frustrated Decorator!

so for now please take a seat... relax come visit again soon to see how I am trying to get it all together.... xoxoxo The Frustrated Decorator.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Sorry Wrong Number...

One ringie dingie...due to my move & the computer geek who literately pulled the plug on all my computer info..boy did he pull the plug on ALL my contacts access & info to my website etc...gone. I had no back up as I am not a techie girl.. who knew After wanting to plant him in my rose beds ( ala Practical magic) all he has to say is sorry I am ending this conversation!!!!!
O.K. so I am here to tell you if you need me for now my new email is Sorry if you have been trying to get me with no reply. It's like a fresh new start...maybe it's time to plant some new seeds! oxoxo Laura

Thursday, November 11, 2010

What time is it?

Verbena bird here... do you know what time it is? I think it is the time of the year when we start to get in the spirit.. I am starting to get that sparklie feeling inside. Or maybe it's the dust from the glitter ornaments I am working on for the store?

This is a short post as I am working nights around here getting orders out & getting ready for this weekends Art festival & Bridal show. Sooo I am just sending out a quick shout out to say get in the spirit, feel sparklie & think about planning on doing something nice this holiday season for those struggling & doing without. It's really hitting home to me as I see so many of my neighbors loosing their homes. so many without jobs too many struggling with families to feed here in THIS country. My sparklie little birdie has a message from the heart...

Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not. ~Dr. Seuss

Lets all think of giving something to those in need this Holiday season.. a meal.. a smile & hug...anything to help. Really do it in some small way I say for it will bring you a sparklie day!!!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Don't be bored!

Always with you in mind.. made from the finest antique frames we have collected in all shapes, sizes & colors.. these are great in any room.. great gift.. also comes with a sweet little handmade eraser. Avail at the shoppe now.

Oh & don't forget Tomorrow Friday is artwalk 6-8. Downtown Ocala.. see you on the square!
xoxox Verbena Girl

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Getting there & grateful...

Hi blogging friends I really have been out of touch from the world of blogging and all that digital stuff. For some reason in all my many moves this ones was & still is the hardest. Are you an accumulator? Do you save way too much stuff? Are you a sentimental collector like me well when it is time to clean house & move your life it is stressful.. for me it has been overwhelming but it is great to get rid off all the stuff... what is that stuff anyway? I am in my new home here on the farm & have a way to go getting it together. I am posting some pictures for you to see some of the "things" I have kept & love.. Life is changing I love when this's like a rebirth for me... I will be in touch many good things happening... Love to hear from you. Believe me I am grateful I am finally getting there!!!! xooxo Laura
some of my many garden/ Victorian inspired of my old addictions. over it now.
antique shoe rack I am using for extra bowls/dishes.. inspired by Rachel Ashwell.
My Grandmothers dishes & thrift shop urn find.
my carved old doors I never painted.. maybe in time a washed Grey?
my old cabinet that I had in my studio now stores my books.
what to do with an old shawl... tack it to your bathroom window... I placed a lladro ballarina I was given as a gift many years ago on the sill.
The real deal... Aunt Nannia"s cupboard I placed in my kitchen.. used for spices & vitamins.. another favorite piece I will cherish.
this chair & white cover..believe it or not is 17 years old... something I will be true to White, linen & Vintage
My favorite dresser I have had for many many years... I sold most of my furniture during my move but this one I will not let go of... for now
work in progress.. I want to create a sitting area in my bedroom with an alter/mantel honoring my Grandmothers...
what's this.... necklaces rolled up in an antique quilt from the move... oh way too many I have issues?
working on creating a dressing/closet area with all my favorite accessories.
my favorite view is from the shower... in the morning I look for the momma eagle sitting on the tippy top of that branch way up high in the tree top ( see the branch) feeding her baby... in the evening I look Up at the moon & stars count my blessings & thank God for being home here. xoxoxo Laura