How to make table centerpiece with branches

I am a Pintrest hoarder, saving thousands of images of wedding tables, centerpieces, wreaths, floral arrangements, party ideas, business displays, ornaments and food wishes. Many florists will charge $100 and up, per table centerpiece. Flowers are usually the most expensive part of a wedding.

Fortunately, I am already married and have no intention on planning a wedding. That being said, I do plan on throwing many summer parties for my friends and family. Just because it isn't a wedding doesn't mean we can't have nice centerpieces on each table.

The video below shows one how make a floral centerpiece using a Manzanita Branch. Save-on-Crafts sells three Manzanita branches for fifteen dollars. Shop Wild Things offers an assortment of string crystals and beads, but I would prefer just to go to Joanne Craft Store.





Waterproof Submersible LED lights


Mix two businesses into one website

The other day, while thinking about my ice cream truck and Seattle Soap Company, I had to wonder about creating a website for both businesses. I ran the idea by my husband, which was a mistake because he tends to be a naysayer when it comes to most my business ideas, shooting them down before they even get on paper.

I want a simple ice cream truck selling novelty treats, and when the business can afford it, I want a soft serve machine. I do not want to cater, make homemade ice cream, or do any ice cream home delivery. At least that is not even on my mind. The website will be to promote the truck and, sell Seattle Soap Company product, particularly soap, lotions and sugar scrubs. The website will be advertised on the truck, along with other social network icons. When I looked at other ice cream truck websites, they promote all sorts of things that are not ice cream truck related.

Below is a array of items I think could be sold on the Ice Cream Truck Website. One of the items, from Korea is an "ice cream face mask". I see no reason I cannot incorporate the same theme, particularly since my scrubs are Vanilla, Strawberry, Chocolate, Mint, Blackberry etc...etc... In fact, I see how my items are a perfect match. It is all about marketing and vision. Just because ice cream is something that one eats, does not mean one cannot sell an ice cream pajama, or ice cream key chain, or chocolate body scrub on the website. It all works together when they layout makes sense.


English Theme Ice Cream Truck part Deux

Hello All,

The English Theme ice cream van is moving along. I spoke with my husband about the idea, he is on board so long as we start the business only after buying our house.

I found an old camper van for sale, it costs about $4K. Then I contacted an autobody shop and asked them how much it would cost to cut out a service window and install a small service bar. They could not give me a quote without seeing the van, but estimated the job would cost probably a couple thousand. This puts the van cost up to $6,000. The van would need a new paint job, I do not know yet how much that would cost. I found several Youtube videos and websites about how to paint your own vehicle, I an confident that I can do it myself - although it would take me several weekends.

I am still pretty confident that the best profit from this business will come from Soft Serve machines, there are many of them on e-bay, but how do I know they work?



English Theme Ice Cream Truck

For the past year, I've been toying with the idea of starting an English theme ice cream truck business. I even posted some legal questions on Avoo, asking lawyers certain questions about trademark infringement. For example: can I use a photo of the queen of England? How dis-similar must our work outfit be from Mary Poppins?

My idea is pretty simple. I want to start with one small truck, and work myself up to more in time (and if the business takes off) The truck will be English themed - think Bulldog, Union Jack, and Queen Victoria on steroids. Each cup used to serve the soft serve ice cream will have the Union Jack. The driver (myself) will wear and English type costume.

When will I be able to start this business? Who knows. But I love collecting my ideas.

TurkeyParlor is a supplier for the ice cream and frozen yogurt business.

Websternaught Store
Soft Serve Ice Cream and Shake Machines
Saniserv Products
Ice Cream Supplier - Facebook
Turkey Parlor Soft Serve Machines
Polar Treats Supplies - Tacoma
Puget Sound Dairy Distributor 
Ice Cream Express Portland/Seattle
Webstaurant - ice cream supplies
Soft Serve Ice Cream Machines
Ice Cream Truck Article Seattle
Nelson's Ice Cream Supply
All Star Cold Plate Freezer
Cardinal Cold Plate Carts
Neon ice cream signs
Ice Cream Truck Soft Serve Machines



Check out the cost of this soft serve machine! Holy Crap!
If you do not have $15,532 to spare on a soft serve machine, maybe you could go the cheaper route and buy a KitchenAid KPFD200SS Pro Line Frozen Dessert machine. It costs $2000 on Amazon. I think this machine could handle only small volume orders. Just think of it this way - sell 15,532 cones for $1 each and then you could buy the big machine.





For freezing, there are three options. The dry plate freezer appears to be the most appropriate freezer, but also more expensive that other freezers. They plug in over night and are cold for the whole day. You won't have to worry about anything because it does not use power during the day, and the freezers are overbuilt with additional insulation and design to take the bumps and bruises that come with being on the road which chest freezers are not designed for. Apparently they are expensive to fix.

I found some cold plate freezers on ebay, but frankly, I do not trust them. I also found a push cart cold plate freezer on Amazon, I do trust them more than ebay.

















Shakespeare Playhouse

Half-timbering — This is what creates the distinctive black and white Tudor. Yummy, like a big Black and White Cookie. This is the Shakespeare playhouse, where children play dress up. An important part of all playhouses is landscape.

The Medical Playhouse

My husband and I are in the process of buying a house, hopefully we will get something with a spacious backyard. I want to build a Medical Playhouse for my two boys.
Medical Decals

Rather than write about all my ideas, I will illustrate it in pictures.


Cutting Boards

Everybody needs a cutting board. They can make wonderful kitchen art too. A few people sell these boards on Etsy does this,  Truengraving  MrWoodProducts

How about this: personalized cutting boards that have two functions, (use for cutting things and looking pretty on the wall)

Suspended Balconies - an idea

While cruising pinterest, I came across this image by accident.

Last night I finished watching a documentary about Henry VIII. Wife number one, Catherine of Aragon had her own balcony. That balcony was later used by wife number six, Catherine Parr, to watch Henry's funeral.



Then I thought about certain events where there is not enough seating room, nor enough room to build out more seats.I thought - wouldn't it be charming to build a suspended balcony that works like a roller coaster, and can be rented by people who want to hang out (pun intended), watch a show or just enjoy a meal? 

The problem of course, is that they would have to install a port-a-potty for each balcony, or the party would just have to call the coaster back to the landing so they could use the bathroom. This would be a big issue if alcohol is involved, as drunk people need to pee a lot. 

But hey, just another one of my ideas. 

Vending Machine Trucks

This looks like an interesting business idea because it reduces lines by distributing points of sale all over the truck. I see high overhead and the need for a very good electricity source. The idea is interesting.

Purchase Vending Machines: http://www.dropsvending.com/

I am not sure what kind of electric generator is needed to operate all of these machines, but my concern is that if it breaks, any frozen item will spoil. http://www.electricgeneratorsdirect.com/power/portable-generators.html.

My next thought is, how does one lift and drop the truck when it is time to stop and go? ( sorry about the bad construction of that last sentence) I went to yahoo and found some information about hydraulics.





Making A Nautical Wreath

My in-laws have a charming vacation home at a Mexican beach community. After speaking with my mother in law, and some careful planning, I am going to make a beach theme holiday wreath for their beach home.

The problem with making nautical or ocean theme wreaths is getting the proper supplies. I tend to work very slowly on my projects because I want to ensure they are just right before assembly.

To start, here is my Shabby Chic Christmas Board on Pinterest. I took three images from that board, and would like to incorporated elements of all three into a charming Nautical Christmas Wreath. Notice how the second image has small nautical charms glued onto the shells? That was a detail I missed when I first looked at the image. I like how certain features are blended so well into a piece that one does not immediately notice them. The blue crab is a very cute addition, but one must be careful to make sure it is not creepy. We do not want to scare anybody away. I did find a supplier on ebay who sells all sort of sea creatures. They are called: Gems Under The Sea. For this wreath, we will select on sea creature, paint it an non-scary color like light blue/beige/pastel teal. It will also be bedazzled with some gemstones much like the star fish. I then conducted an eBay search for Nautical Jewelry , Gemstone Sea Horse,  Nautical Ship Wheel Gemstone Crab, Rhinestone Crocodile, White Rhinestone Bikes,

The color scheme will be: brown, white, pearl, ocean blue and light teal.