22 November 2022

Cinnamon Xmas Tree Decorations

cinnamon Christmas ornaments

 Delicious aromas of cinnamon permeate the air in your home when you decorate your Christmas tree with a few of these DIY decorations.  

To make about seven decorations 3 inches in diameter all you need is the following:

cinnamon Christmas ornaments

 1 cup of cinnamon

3/4 cup of unsweetened apple sauce plus 1 more heaped Tablespoon.

And 3 Tablespoons of white PVA glue.

cinnamon Christmas ornamentscinnamon Christmas ornaments

Mix all in a bowl and knead well until a dough is formed.

The more you knead, the better the consistency.

Sprinkle more cinnamon on the bench and roll with a rolling pin or press out into a circle that is 1/2 inch thick.

cinnamon Christmas ornaments

Cut the circles using a glass.

Or use shaped cookie cutters.

cinnamon Christmas ornaments

Or press a design into the dough.

I used icing shape cutters.

cinnamon Christmas ornaments

Use a nail or straw to make a hole for the hanger.

cinnamon Christmas ornaments

Slide a spatula under the dough.

cinnamon Christmas ornaments

 Place the ornament gently on a baking paper-covered tray.

Bake in a 180 degrees oven for 20 minutes.

Leave to cool overnight.

cinnamon Christmas ornaments

Add a string or ribbon then hang it on your tree.

Or as in my case my upcycled bat branch from the Halloween decor.

cinnamon Christmas ornaments

I added mini pearl lights to the branch tree and added a single wooden deer ornament.

cinnamon Christmas ornaments

To finish it off, a pair of ceramic white deer standing in the front is surrounded by wooden heart lights.

Simple, but perfect.

cinnamon Christmas ornaments

And oh my!

The cinnamon ornaments make it smell like 


Grab a cuppa, and visit

 my Fine Art America gift store


'Tracey Lee Cassin Design'  

#cinnamondecorations #diychristmas 


8 November 2022

'Save the birds' Crystal Hanger

DIY Crystal Hanger 

Have you ever had birds fly into your house windows?

Yip - so have I!

Recently I cleaned my filthy windows and then the very next day, a beautiful wax eye bird was dead on the ground.

The windows simply reflected the native bush behind 'The Barn', and that poor bird thought it was flying into the bush!

So sad.

If you are a long-time follower of Mia Bella Passions, you are probably wondering, bush?

But the 'Mia Bella Passions' garden is Italian and cottage!


I haven't told you about my new beginnings and the happenings over the past two years.

Now's the time to do that.

I made the decision to leave my marriage.

For myself.

Not for anyone else or because of anyone else.

Simply because it was the right thing to do after such a long time of unfixable unhappiness.

The truth is 'Mia Bella Passions' - the house, the gardens and the blog carried me through terrible years of sadness and difficulty.

Not long after the separation, I met 'Him'.

I exhibited paintings in a gallery he was the curator of.

Another creative.

My perfect match.

We became a team.

 I shifted from 'Mia Bella Gardens Homestead' and transitioned to a gypsy-type life travelling, photographing, writing, painting and melding into the amazing small Lakeside community I now live in.

So that is where the bush comes into the picture.

Our creative studios and office are in a big blue barn that backs onto the native New Zealand bush.

To create some reflective light in the windows so those poor birds do not think there is a bush ahead, I have made pretty beaded crystal hangers.

I call them my 'Save the birds' crystal hangers.

Bead Craft
To make a 'Save the birds' crystal hanger, you will need
Glass beads in your choice of colour and shape.
Very thin wire or jewellery wire.
Jewellry Crimps
Jewellery crimps.
A larger bead and crystal for the bottom of the hanger.

Start by cutting the wire to about 20 inches long (50cm) and attach your bottom crystal through the top hole in it, and twist the wire.
Then add a feature bead.
I used a glass heart which had a hole through the bottom and top.
Bead craft
Add more beads in whatever pattern and size you desire leaving about 3 inches (7.5cm) of wire to create a hanger loop.
 Using a metal crimp place one at the top of the bead chain, and squeeze to flatten with the pliers.

Mia Bella Passions blog
Put another metal crimp on and thread the wire through to create a loop.
I actually put two crimps on for the loop but you only need one.
Squeeze the crimp flat and trim the excess wire.
DIY Crystal Hanger
Hang it in a window where the birds tend to fly into.
The beads create shimmer to distract,
and the crystal creates beautiful rainbow patterns on a sunny day.
This has been the perfect solution that stops the birds flying to the barn office windows.
And they are very pretty too.

#diycraft #beadcraft 

8 October 2022

Easy Sausage Two Cheese Canapes


Need to whip up a finger food plate for visitors or a party?

These sausage two cheese canapes are small meaty bites that will delight!

They are great for a kid's party platter too.

Easy Canapes

Super easy to make.

All you do is:

Fry your sausages in a little oil.

Make sure you prick the sausage skins to prevent bursts out of the ends.


Sausage canapes
Slice the sausages into 1-inch rounds.


Spread each sausage piece with a thin layer of cream cheese.

Easy Canapes

Pop a chunk of tasty cheese on top.

(I used creamy Danish Harvati cheese for the chunks).

Easy Canapes

Then on to that a dollop of tomato sauce.

(I used Texan BBQ flavoured tomato flavour).

Carefully put a toothpick through the cheese into the sausage if you wish to transport it to another venue.

But if you are serving them straight from your home kitchen, the cream cheese on the sausage holds it together.

Keep refrigerated until 10 to 15 minutes before serving time.

Easy canapes


Put a little parsley around the plate to decorate.

Easy, huh?

A favourite easy-to-prepare canape your meat-loving guests will love to eat!

#Horsdoeuvres #appetiser #sausagecanape #canape #easycanapes

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