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Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Winter Wonderland on a Tray Blog Tour!

Today I am joining a Katherine of Katherines Corner along with 23 other bloggers in a Tray Tour blogging event. Now I will be totally honest, I am not a lifestyle blogger. Don't misunderstand, I love a beautiful home. But my lifestyle ( I am proud to say!) is Scratch Made Food! & DIY Homemade Household. So, you may notice that my tray will be a bit more on the rustic side than the others you will see on this tour! But I thought why not have some fun, as we spend winter in the desert, come a take a peek...


We are currently sitting in the desert for the winter. This is our second time doing so and the sunny 70+ degree weather is quite enjoyable. But one thing is for certain, although it seems like summer and feels like summer, the truth is Thanksgiving has passed and Christmas is just around the corner. And no matter the weather this is wintertime in the desert. When we go shopping for groceries the Christmas tree lots tend to remind us that this is winter and we better be ready for the cold evenings as well as the holidays ahead!


When I signed up for the Winter Wonderland on a Tray, Blog Tour, I had a couple of rules that I placed upon myself. First I could buy nothing for the tray tour, only using what I already have, and borrow very little, if anything at all. For a couple of reasons. First there is no room in a 24 foot fifth wheel to store extra decor and crafting supplies. Also, we were over an hour from a large shopping center, and supplies were limited in the closest town to us.  


The whole idea came from a gift given last Christmas when my husband gave me this cute little truck and camp trailer salt and pepper set. It seemed only natural to use this little S&P set and our current circumstances as the theme for my tray. We started out our winter stay close to the Superstition Mountains here in Arizona working as camp hosts, and in guest services. With such beautiful surroundings, it seemed only right to use our beautiful campsite as part of the design as well. Come and see how I did!


And now that you know the inspiration for my tray, Winter in the Desert, let's take a look! As you can see from the photos above, it really does look like summertime! However the nights do remind you that it is in fact winter time, and you need at least two thick blankets on the bed! Now let's take a look at how the tray of our campsite and the surrounding area turned out...




From around our campsite, we gathered natural stones, dirt and gravel for the tray, but rest assured they were returned to the desert just as soon as the photos were taken! The natural materials were placed on an old cafeteria tray we keep in our little RV kitchen. 

The hardest task was to find rocks that would stand together in the same way the mountains stand strong and stable. From there dirt and smaller stones made paths just like the ones found in the campground. 

Then my little salt and pepper set were parked! And as it turns out, the only thing that was borrowed, is that black chenille stem/pipe cleaner I fashioned into the fire ring! Fallen tree sprigs were gathered and made into "firewood" for the fire ring, and stacked beside it. 

The cactus were purchased at a gardening shop prior to arriving at camp, they usually sit on our picnic table, but they are perfect to lend a desert feel to the tray. 



This was also a family activity as we gathered the large stones when taking our grandson for his morning walk, along with a couple smaller ones of his choosing.  



A desert is not a rainy place, but it is not unusual to have a heavy rainfall in the  in the winter. But as fast as it falls, it dries up or is carried off in a "wash". Often in the mornings you will see coyotes walking about on their food hunt route. And if you are lucky, at night you will hear them singing a conversation to the rest of the pack. That is a bit of the interesting parts of life in the desert. 



The Superstition Mountains are full of intriguing folklore and apparently gold, if you study the stories. But my favorite memory of these mountains is the gentle lightening strikes that are commonplace along the mountain range, starting in the late afternoons and lasting through the evenings. 

Thank you for visiting Winter in the Desert, here at Scratch Made Food! & DIY Homemade Household. I invite you to continue on with the tour with a visit to Bubbling with Elegance. 

But before you go, I would love for you to come back and visit our recipes for delicious, whole food ideas for your own table. Blessings my friends!

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Would you like to comment?

  1. I find your lifestyle fascinating and am even more intrigued that you do so much homemade cooking and run a food blog in your small quarters and interesting surroundings that change often. Thanks for sharing on your Blog Tray Tour. I do also like your recipes. Its' Judee from Gluten Free A-Z Blog it will only accept me as anonymous.

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    1. Judee, it's not always gourmet, but we do eat well. If this lifestyle has taught me anything, it would be how to be organized. Without an organized kitchen area and workspace, none of it could happen. As always, thanks so for stopping by, I appreciate more than you know!

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  2. You really captured the essence of your trip. Such a wonderful memory to incorporate at Christmas. My husband actually recognized the camper from his younger days. Great Fun!
    Lynne

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  3. Melynda,
    What a genius idea for your tray!! Very creative ! I love that you used what you had on hand!! And a great depiction of real life!! Thanks so much for sharing!!
    hugs,
    Deb

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    1. Debbie, I can't tell you how much that means to me, coming from you! Thank you for stopping by, I appreciate it!

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  4. That is darling Melynda - I love it!! It's just perfect! I used to live in AZ, and the Superstitions are beautiful, especially after a rain. How wonderful that you can be camp hosts and get to enjoy the beauty every day. It's nice to tour with you, and Happy Desert Holidays!

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  5. What a fun idea for your tray and time with your grandson! xo laura in Colorado (neighbors).

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    1. Thank you, actually this winter we were bless to have the grandson and his parents along as co-hosts and travel buddies. I could not imagine not seeing family for extended time periods, so we all decided to travel together this year. With separate RV's but I get to share the internet from their RV!

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  6. Hi, Melynda; your tray is so unique, starting with pieces given as a gift, and bringing the concept of winter wonderland to another level!

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  7. What a great idea for your tray! So creative! Have a happy holiday!
    Shelley

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    1. Shelly, thanks so much, and Happy Holidays to you and yours!

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  8. A great idea for a tray in the desert. How sweet you got to visit your grandson. Creating what you have on hand is fabulous. xo

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    1. Thanks Linda, I appreciate your stopping by! Have a great week ahead.

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  9. Very creative! You have definitely captured the desert feel, and what a fun interpretation of winter wonderland since the desert is your winter wonderland! I hope you have a wonderful holiday season in the Arizona desert!
    Jenna

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  10. Love this! I miss the beautiful Arizona winters. I lived there for a time and the Superstitions are just beautiful. Thanks for the memories. Happy Holidays!

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  11. Melynda your tray is so creative! What a fun theme. I love how it turned out. Been a pleasuring touring with you.

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  12. Melynda,
    How exciting to travel to such lovely places. Your tray is adorable. We camp often too and I have camper salt and pepper shakers too. Enjoy your time.
    Hugs,
    Bev

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  13. This is such a clever idea and I love how it came about with something given to you last Christmas. I know it must be a challenge at times living in small quarters, but it brings about great creativity for you as well. Happy Holidays and God bless!

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    1. Hi Maria, you are right, it is a challenge, but a good one! I appreciate your stopping by, have a great week ahead.

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  14. What a wonderful memory and fun tray! So very creative! Thank you for sharing. Lovely hopping with you! Toodles, Kathryn

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  15. Melynda, this is fantastic!
    FF#19,20&21

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    1. Thank you Paula, it was fun to do and share. Have a great week ahead.

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  16. How creative, yes I always say use what you have don't buy anything (smile) your cafeteria tray is a creative way to create your winter wonderland in the dessert. Thank you for joining in the fun. Pinned! Hugs!!

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    1. Thank you Katherine, I appreciate your work to get this done, it was fun and I hope to join in again!

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  17. What a creative desert winter idea and it all worked out perfectly! I was in Tucson recently celebrating Thanksgiving and I can relate to those very cold nights. Brrrr.

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    1. Hi Allyson, this tour was fun to be a part of. My first but I hope not my last. Thanks for stopping by.

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  18. Love your tray! You captured your surroundings perfectly! Thanks so much for linking up at the Unlimited Link Party 92. Shared.

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    1. Dee, thank you! It was fun to participate in this blogging activity.

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  19. Melynda, your post was especially interesting to me since my brother and his wife are doing the exact same thing. I'm not sure about the name of the park where they are hosting. But it's probably not too far from you.

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    1. Nice! My husband and I have been hosting off and on for the last 4 years. Thanks for stopping by, I appreciate it!

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  20. Melynda, I have to say your “winter wonderland tray” may be the most creative take on this theme. I recognize your scenery as we used to visit Scottsdale Arizona every year for 17 years - but never in the summer. The dessert has its own kind of beauty. What a cute way to use your sweet little salt and pepper shakers. I have no idea what a 24 foot fifth wheel is, but you certainly made use of your surroundings.

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    1. Hi Carol, thanks so much for the kind comment! I/we discovered the magic of the desert about 4 years ago and I always look forward to the next visit. When we travel we pull a small 5thwheel travel trailer with us. Not a lot of space, but plenty of comfort.

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Comments always appreciated, at Scratch Made Food! Thank you for stopping by!