Tag Archives: DIY

DIY: A hostess gift on the fly

DIY: A hostess gift on the fly


We hadn’t planned to see Lori and Julian and meet their little girl Shayla, but suddenly, we were having dinner with them the next day.  It was wonderful that we happened to be in the area when she and her family happened to be free.

I was super excited to reconnect with my friend of 22 years and for Mike to meet her.  I just wasn’t as prepared as I would usually be for such a get-together.  Back in Vegas, in our stick house, I had a craft room with a corner devoted to gifts: trinkets, baubles and edibles, containers, wrapping, embellishments.  The whole shebang!


In the RV, we just can’t afford to waste space on that kind of stuff.  I now have a craft box, and it has to meet all my DIY needs, including gift-giving.  I also need to be more mindful of expenses now that Mike’s the only one with a big income.  I thought fast and created a hostess gift on the fly: four chocolate-covered pretzels accompanied by a small bottle of red wine.

I simply stacked the pretzels in the tissue paper (securing the edge with clear tape), tied the ends with raffia, and added the label.  It was a an easy but appealing way to thank Lori for sharing her home with us – without breaking our budget.  And we could focus having  a great time at our reunion!


RV Decorating: Charmed Pumpkins

RV Decorating: Charmed Pumpkins


These pretty pumpkins are super fast, easy to make and relatively inexpensive.  I got everything I needed, except the pumpkins, at Michaels.  The gourds I picked up from the grocery store.  The whole project cost $41 and took about two hours to complete.  When the season is over, pull off the charms, before tossing the pumpkins, and use them for another project.

It’s important to use real pumpkins because of the weight.  Their heaviness makes sure they’ll stay put on the RV steps or on the picnic table at your campsite.

Any charms that strike your fancy will work.  Or, go with a spooky motif to customize your display for Halloween.



  • Three real pumpkins of varying shapes and heights
  • Acrylic paint (I used Americana in Razzle Berry, Orange Twist, and Coral Blush.)
  • Glitter finish (I used Martha Stewart Crafts Multi-Surface Durable Glitter Finish.)
  • Charms (I used art•i•cake charms that were on clearance.)
  • Raffia (I used ArtMinds gift ties.)


  • Brush any dirt or debris off pumpkins.
  • Paint each pumpkin in a different shade.
  • Let dry and paint with a second coat.
  • Let dry and apply with glitter finish.
  • Let dry and apply a second coat of glitter finish.
  • Tie charms around stem of pumpkins using raffia gift ties.


RV Remodel: a lampshade redo

RV Remodel: a lampshade redo


Buying a 14-year-old RV means that you’re going to be redoing a lot of stuff.  I started with the bedroom lampshades.  They were blah and dirty.  I picked up a couple of self-adhesive lampshades and covered them in turquoise tone-on-tone scrolly print fabric I’d bought to use in various spots throughout the rig.  The lampshades come with templates, so it’s pretty easy to cut the fabric to size and then smooth it onto the shade.  I used fabric glue to attach funky apple green trim, which was embellished with multi colored beads, to the top and bottom of each shade. Easy peasy!

A tip: Make sure the lampshade matches the light bulb fitting of your lights.