Shopping Pumpkin Spice and Everything Nice Locally

Pumpkins, pumpkins, and more pumpkins at the Farmers Market at the Pavilion at Founders Park in downtown Johnson City

Pumpkin Spice season is here! *cue Spice Girls”

So tell me what you want, what you really, really want
I wanna, (ha) I wanna, (ha) I wanna, (ha) I wanna, (ha)
I wanna really, really, really wanna a PSL with extra spice *wink*

After a little singing and dancing, it is time to sit a spell with a good cup of coffee or a PSL and chat about how to join the pumpkin spice craze on a local level.

Taking a fall coffee break at The Corner Cup in Jonesborough, Tennessee. Abby enjoyed a hot Pumpkin Spice Chai while I went for an iced version. We even had a gluten-free, fall-inspired snack! **The Corner Cup has several gluten-free goody options!!**

First things first, find a local coffee shop and order up a pumpkin spice latte or chai (hot or iced–depending on the temps!). With coffee in hand, take a stroll downtown looking for pumpkin-spice inspired goodness.

One thing I love about living in the Northeast Tennessee area is all of the local coffee shops! There are so many good ones it is hard to pick a favorite, but I will go ahead and spill the beans about an upcoming SSL adventure blog. It involves Abby and I visiting several area coffee shops, and it will feature our top picks and why we love them! It is a hard job, but someone has to do it *wink*

Abby and I showing off our arm candy inspired by pumpkin spice and fall. Abby’s arm wrap is from Reclaimed Inspired in Johnson City and my stack is a combo of bracelets Abby made me + a BRANDED Collective leather wrap I purchased at Reclaimed Inspired.

Abby and I made our first stop at Reclaimed Inspired Goods in Johnson City. This darling store carries all kinds of lovely things–from kitchen wares to jewelry for a cause like BRANDED, a collective that employs survivors of human trafficking from Nashville-based non-profit End Slavery Tennessee. #getBRANDED

After strolling downtown Johnson City, we got in the car and headed for Main Street Jonesborough–about 15 minutes up the road.

A collection of pumpkin candles at Carolyn & Lee Chandlers located on Main Street in Jonesborough, Tennessee.

Before exploring all the shops on Main Street, Abby and I went to The Corner Cup to get our fall-inspired beverages. You can’t stroll without sipping and spending *wink* One of my favorite new stores in Jonesborough is Carolyn & Lee Chandlers candle shop and studio (you can actually see them making the candles–which is soooo cool!!). Did I mention this place smells divine!! Oh, my! I love candles so much, and this place will help me add to my ever-growing collection. Shhhhh. Don’t tell the hubby.

Stay tuned for an upcoming SSL blog post all about Carolyn & Lee Chandlers + see the candles I couldn’t live without. #candlelovers #candleaddicts

Dear Hallmark,
Please film a Harvest or Christmas movie on Main Street in Jonesborough, Tennessee.
Thanks so much,
Chasidy–a Hallmark and Main Street Jonesborough fan

Stopping for a selfie with one of the International Storytelling Festival tents in the background #OnlyInJonesborough

After coffee, candles, and selfies, we headed to one of my favorite antique stores in the area to do a little pumpkin-spice inspired shopping. If you love vintage and antiques, Main Street Jonesborough has several stores filled with goodies. I totally suggest grabbing a friend and spending the day on Main Street.

Jack is wearing these vintage hats well!

Does this qualify as a pumpkin spice find? Hmmm. Kinda sorta. And I really need this in my life–in my art studio.

Just look at all of the pretty hardware and drawers! It could hold so many art and craft supplies. *Dear Santa….*

It is really easy to bring fall colors into the home. Look for rich browns, buttery creams, burnt oranges, rusty reds, and golden yellows.

We ended our afternoon in Jonesborough at One.40.Four, where we spied this pumpkin-spice convertible top. Abby decided she needed one, and hopefully, we will be modeling it soon on the blog. I am so thankful she was able to come home for Fall Break. It was much fun shopping pumpkin spice with her. *sappy Mom moment*

The hubby and I taking an obligatory selfie at Lady of the Fountain in downtown Johnson City.

Whew! After a busy day of pumpkin-spice shopping and drinking PSLs, I decided an evening in downtown Johnson City was the perfect way to end a perfect day. Abby had other obligations, so the hubby and I decided to have a little date night.

Downtown merchants decorated scarecrows for the First Friday event.

This cutie was created by Reclaimed Inspired Goods.

Artisans’ Village is well-represented by this fabulous scarecrow!

The Local Company is your go-to shop for area art and artisans. It is the perfect place to find pumpkin-inspired goodies. So, go and treat yourself *wink*

After spending all day shopping and most of the evening out on the town, how does one recover? A pumpkin-spice mini-spa day, of course! I called up Salon Bella Dona, a premier Aveda salon and booked a Pumpkin Pie Pedi with Lexie Panepinto + Pumpkin Facial and microdermabrasion combo with Ex-fo-li-ate by Renee.

Homemade Pumpkin Pie Mask at Salon Bella Dona in Johnson City, located on Bristol HWY.

Pumpkin Spice Scrub + Pumpkin Pie Mask = Perfect Fall Pedi Treat

Look at all of these fall colors! How do you choose?

It is very important for us to take time to treat ourselves. Whether it is a pedi or massage or just a moment of stillness on the porch with a good cup of coffee. We need these moments to rejuvenate our spirit, so we can go forth and conquer the tasks before us!

Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about pumpkin-spice shopping. From PSLs at your local coffee shop to facials from your local salon, pumpkin spice is easy to bring into your life! Now, I challenge each of you to head out to your local stores, coffee houses, salons, and restaurants and see what pumpkin-spice-and-everything-nice things you can find. Feel free to share your fun in the comment section below or to my FB page or by tagging me on Twitter|IG @ChasidyHathorn.

Cute pumpkins at First Friday in downtown Johnson City

 

 

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Rock It Like Prince|Overcoming Fashion Fears

Strike a pose and have some fun!

Hey, y’all! Welcome to Sweet Sorghum Living–a place to sit a spell with a good cup of coffee (which today just so happens to be National Coffee Day–which I celebrate 365 days a year *wink*). So, grab a good cup of coffee (iced or hot or both), and let’s chat about fashion. Which is totally out of character for the blog. Mainly, because I hate–absolutely hate–my photo being taken. I don’t mind a silly selfie or a group photo where I am hidden in the back. But to be at the center of the photo–the camera staring at me–me trying to figure out what to do with my hands–my face. I absolutely do not smile with my teeth, and I have a really big, round head for someone who is only 5′. Bless! I am breaking out in hives just thinking about it.

My dad (better known as Paw Riley), me, and Abby (my daughter–who got her career started at 16 when she created and launched the Vintage Inspired Passionista blog).

Now, my dislike (hate really is a strong word that we should all remove from our vocabulary) of having my photo taken is genetic. I get it from my dad. He also has the round face and big nose–which we try to hide in photos by being silly. I am thankful my daughter did not get the awkward photo gene. I have also tried really hard to teach her to be confident in who she is and to express herself through fashion. That is easy preaching, but hard living.

Being silly is fun, but it also helps me cope with having my photo taken. I also like props–to hide my imperfections and insecurities.

Deep breath. Where was I? Oh, yes. Fashion and overcoming fashion fears. First of all, what are fashion fears? Anything you are afraid to wear–whether it is a particular color or trend, and it is anything you are self-conscious about wearing out in public. It is the clothes you see in magazines or on Pinterest that you really love, but you would never actually buy because you believe you are too short, too tall, too old, too chubby, too pale, too… to wear. It is the little voices inside your head telling you that if you wear those skinny jeans your muffin top will show or that blouse will announce to the world that your head is big and round. It is the outfit you put on in the dressing room–take off–and swear off food for life.

Fashion fears suck, and those voices inside our heads are mean. Now, it would take me days and days of blogging to explain why I say mean things to myself when I am standing in front of my dressing room mirror. But, today is more about overcoming one fashion fear at a time + about challenging all of you to face one of your fashion fears and to say one nice thing about yourself each morning (no negatives!!!!).

A big thank you to my daughter for taking time out of her crazy busy schedule to patiently take photos of me.

On this Try-Day Friday (which is a lovely idea from Dia & Co.), I am wearing a color I would not normally wear. I avoid this color because I am fair with blondish hair and green eyes. I always feel like it makes me look pink and draws attention to my rosacea. Deep breath. Trying to be positive and have the right attitude because that is what I learned from Dia & Co.

Now, without further ado, let’s take a look at the photos my daughter took of me facing my fashion fear of wearing burgundy (maroon, cordovan, or oxblood).

Simple pencil skirt dressed up with a pop of burgundy + boho accessories (necklace by BluKatDesign and bracelets my daughter made me for Mother’s Day).

To face my fashion fear of wearing burgundy even more, I tossed on a boho top in varying shades of burgundy and deep rust.

Oh, I almost never wear a “round” or crew neckline. Which means, I conquered TWO fashion fears on Try-Day Friday! #winning **p.s. do y’all spy the furbabies?**

I wore this outfit to a meeting I had on Thursday. So, technically, I tried one day early *wink* It was a fun outfit that really got me into the spirit of fall. *fingers crossed for cooler temps*

Just swinging with Mattie and owning who I am–a 40-something artist trying to find her way in this big world.

What I have learned from Prince, my dog Mattie, and Dia & Co.–express yourself, be positive, be bold, and have some fun. *cue Raspberry Beret*

Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about overcoming our fashion fears. Also, thanks for being my therapist today as I muddled through some of my insecurities. I challenge all of you to Try-Day Friday and to #rockit like Prince by sharing your photos to my Facebook page or tag @ChasidyHathorn on Twitter|Instagram + tag @diaandco.

I will revisit this topic and challenge again because I think it is important to face our fears and to not be afraid to admit our insecurities. Together we can make this world a better place–but it starts with being kind to ourselves and forgiving ourselves for not being perfect. *cue Put a Little Love in Your Heart*

Bloopers!

No, Mom. I do not want to give sugars.

Abby: Act Natural
Me: **Karate Kid**

Jazz Hands

 

 

DIY Magnetic Chalkboard + Memo Board Using Cookie Sheets

Hey, y’all! Welcome to Sweet Sorghum Living–a place to sit a spell with a good cup of coffee and enjoy good conversation about everything from home renovation to easy DIYs. Today on the blog, I want to catch up all of my new friends and reminisce with old ones with a DIY I wrote for my hometown newspaper, The Winston County Journal.

Inspired by my mom’s vintage button collection and Christmas cookies, this upcycled DIY project is easy to create using affordable materials.

When it comes to baking, I don’t do it a lot…OK, honestly, I don’t bake.  So what’s a girl to do with those cookie sheets that are collecting dust in the cabinet?  Upcycle them, of course, into useful memo boards!

What is so fabulous about this fun, kid-friendly, no-fail, anyone-can-do-this DIY is it makes the perfect gift for that friend or relative who lives in the kitchen and loves to bake.

**For gift presentation, simply attach a couple of recipes and pack the memo board in a nice basket with all the ingredients needed to make those delish treats.  Voila! You have a great bundled gift that is sure to please. + who knows you might get an invite to sample those goodies.**

Now, call up…who am I kidding…text a friend and round up the kiddos, bake some cookies (or open up a bag of Oreos and place them on a nice platter), put on a pot of coffee, and let’s get to crafting!

MATERIALS:

*Tools:  sandpaper, drill, drill bit, hot glue gun, glue sticks, pliers, tape measure, leather gloves, wire cutters, scissors

*Cookie Sheets (I used new, inexpensive ones.  If you want to use an old one, be sure to clean and scrub it throughly; otherwise, the primer/paint won’t stick, and you will just have a really big mess + a really big laugh!)

*Rust-Oleum Automobile Primer

*Krylon Chalkboard Paint

*Spray paint in the color of your liking

*18 gauge steel wire

*Burlap ribbon

*Two different size/color ribbons (see above materials photo)

*Round magnets

*Buttons

*Chalk

*Paint markers for personalizing

INSTRUCTIONS:

1.  Before sanding and priming, drill the holes for the wire hanger.  I wanted to hang mine vertically, so I drilled holes at the top/handle in the thickest part for added durability.

2.  Sand the entire cookie sheet, paying close attention to where the holes were drilled.  Be careful because the edges of the holes will be sharp and rough.  After sanding, wipe clean. Next, prime following the instructions on the Rust-Oleum Automobile Primer can.  Allow adequate time to dry before adding that pop of color.

3.  There are a ton of color options for this step, but I chose periwinkle because of the modern contrast with the rustic burlap.  Once the primer has had adequate time to dry, spray paint the color of your choice being sure to follow the instructions on the can.  Remember several thin coats are better than one thick…goopy…runny…coat.  For the chalkboard memo board, follow the instructions on the can.

4.  While waiting on the paint to dry, eat cookies and dance around to some great tunes.  I am personally a huge fan of the 80s.

5.  After the cookie sheets are completely dry, it is time to add the wire hanger.  Using wire cutters, cut the wire to 16″–give or take. **Safety glasses and thick leather gloves are recommended for this step. It is up to you to play it safe or walk on the dangerous side.**

6.  Loop the wire through the holes. Using pliers, secure the wire by bending the wire around itself.

7.  Make a bow, and tie it around the wire hanger.  Secure the bow in place with a touch of hot glue.  **Caution:  Hot glue is hot!**

8.  Use the paint markers to decorate/personalize.  This is a wonderful opportunity to get the kids involved.  Handprints would be adorable…Grandma would love it!

Let the kids have fun decorating and personalizing while you sip on a cup of coffee.

9.  To make the magnets, hot glue the buttons to the magnets.  To make the chalk holder magnet, tie ribbon around the chalk, and secure the other end of the ribbon to the magnet using hot glue.

**Tip: use a wooden ruler to press the buttons + use tweezers to remove excess glue.**

10.  Attach recipes with the magnets, bundle, and give to a friend or family member.  **p.s. It may be so adorable that you decide to keep it for yourself.**

Create a grouping of cookie sheet memo boards for an adorable way to organize recipes, to do lists, coupons, and much more.

Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about converting cookie sheets into memo boards! Be sure to follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter (@ChasidyHathorn) for home inspiration, gluten-free recipes, easy DIYs, and more.

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Repurposing Bedposts into Legs for a Kitchen Countertop

These kitchen countertop legs were once bedposts.

I would not describe myself as handy–creative, yes. Thankfully, I have a wonderful husband who takes my wild ideas and brings them to life. Several years back, during the sprucing up of the kitchen at HatRidge–the home we built together in Mississippi, I had such an idea for the hubby. **Quick interruption for backstory:  We began our DIY…home improvement…home building…in 1998.  The hubby is conservative (very khaki) and a bit stingy. His motto is why pay someone when we can figure it out and do it ourselves. Me–well, I am colorful with a sky’s the limit attitude.** Anyway, his stinginess led me to the junk piles and thrift stores to find awesome treasures for the kitchen. Long story short. When I stumbled upon a pair of vintage bedposts, I knew I had found the perfect legs for the kitchen countertop.

Another view of the bedposts converted to countertop legs…I love the contrast of the dark bedposts against the travertine and warm walls.

If I had to pick two favorite projects from the HatRidge kitchen, one would be the travertine floors the hubby and I installed–because travertine is simply gorgeous + the second would be the vintage bedposts we converted to countertop legs–because I love taking unwanted junk and giving it new life.

The most fabulous thing about the upcycled bedpost project was the perfect match to the kitchen island!

This was the easiest repurposed project we have ever done and probably will ever do *wink*

Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today! Be sure to follow me on all the social media (@ChasidyHathorn) to keep up with all the latest projects, art, and randomness!

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DIY Upcycled Wind Chimes from Kitchen Utensils

Add a pop pf color to a dull fall landscape with DIY upcycled wind chimes.

I have always loved folksy whirligigs and whimsical yard art. Old tires used as planters, rusty farm equipment “planted” in a flower bed, vintage chicken feeders used as hanging pots–the list could go on forever + thanks to Pinterest, there are a plethora of ideas for the home and garden. Now, if only we had more spare time *wink*

Last year, I wrote a series of DIYs for my hometown newspaper, The Winston County Journal, to inspire people to make and give handmade gifts for the holidays.  I believe everyone has a touch of “crafty” or “artsy” inside of him or her. Just give crafting a try and have fun like when you were five!  If the project turns out to be an epic fail, laugh and be proud of yourself for trying and for having fun.

**p.s. I suggest having a crafting party for this project.  Make it a dessert potluck + Keep the coffee brewing and the stories rolling.**

DIY Upcycled Wind Chimes from Common Kitchen Items

Materials/Tools:

cheese grater (I used an old broken one from my junk stash.)

4 spoons, 4 forks, 4 butter knives (try to mismatch for a more whimsical look)

1 serving spoon or fork

Rust-Oleum Automobile Primer

several colors of spray paint (perfect time to use bits and dabs of leftover paint)

fishing line (30lb test is best for durability)

wire (18 or 20 gauge)

glass beads (or beads from old/broken jewelry)

power drill with drill bit

sandpaper

safety googles

needle nose pliers (for bending the wire)

scissors

Instructions:

1.  Drill holes in the silverware and base of the cheese grater (one hole per utensil for a total of 12 holes) and two holes at the top of the grater for the wire hanger.  This takes patience.  It took me several attempts before I successfully drilled my utensils. I am sad to report the first couple of spoons suffered much, but not in vain. RIP.

2.  Next, gently sand the utensils and grater.  Be careful around the sharp and rough edges of the holes.

3.  Prime silverware and cheese grater with the Rust-Oleum automobile primer following the instructions on the can.

4.  After the primer has fully dried, spray paint the cheese grater and utensils following the instructions on the can.  **Tip: Mix it up + Be bright and bold!

5.  While waiting on items to dry, cut 12 pieces of fishing line (one for each utensil) about 18 inches (better to have too much than not enough).  Cut one piece about 24 inches for the clacker.  **If you are having a crafting party, this is the perfect time for a coffee break.**

6.  After everything has dried, thread the fishing line through the silverware hole (securing with a fishing knot), add glass beads, and tie to the cheese grater.  Trim excess line with scissors. Repeat this step until all utensils have been attached.

**This step is great for the kiddos.  Have them pick out and string the beads while you share stories of holidays of yesteryear.**

7.  For the hanger, cut wire to desired hanging length and secure to the holes drilled at the top of the cheese grater by threading the wire through the holes and bending it around itself using the pliers.

8.  Finally, tie the clacker to the wire hanger.

Ta-da!  Look how fabulous! Now, comes the hard part.  Do you keep the wind chimes for yourself, or do you wrap and give away your lovely creation?

Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about making wind chimes from common kitchen items. Be sure to follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest (@ChasidyHathorn) for more ideas and photos of my art and furbabies!

I would like to dedicate this blog post to my dad who taught me how to take old junk and turn it into artsy treasures + who has always been there for me. Confession–I have always been a bit of a handful. Back in my teen years, I drove a red Ford ranger. Oh, how I loved that truck! Yes, I piled too many friends in there. No, it wasn’t the smartest thing. Yes, I drove the backroads–often, too fast. The good Lord just watched over me, and I am pretty sure I had a different guardian angel each day. Well, one day while driving a freshly graveled road, I lost control of Red and off in the ditch I went. This was back before cell phones and OnStar, so, off I set on foot to my Uncle Mackie and Aunt Barbara’s house to call home. Long story short. Daddy came to my rescue–like always. My dad has never been too tired or too busy to rescue me. Recently, he saved me from a bit of trouble by getting the skunk that was caught in my armadillo “humane” trap out. Yes, catch and release. Poor Daddy! #myhero

 

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