Thursday, December 30, 2010


This morning I hit 200 followers! How exciting! 
The next few weeks are probably going to be pretty slow around here. I've got roughly 3 weeks until this baby comes, and my energy and motivation are dwindling. I've still got a few boring sewing projects I need to work on, but nothing to post about. If I do anything interesting, I'll make sure to share it though! Hopefully a few weeks after the baby's here, I can get back into the crafting mood. Keep checking back for updates!

P.s. I got a Canon Rebel for Christmas! Can't wait to start posting pictures with it!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Pacifier/toy clip

With a new baby coming (just around the corner!) and a toddler too, I was thinking I'd be needing some toy clips. We don't normally use pacifiers, but they can be used for that, too. All you'll need is ribbon, a clip, and velcro or snap pliers. Metal or plastic snaps would work fine. I made 2 different toy clips. One has snaps on both ends, so I can snap it around a toy, and the other end can be snapped around the handle of a carseat or stroller. I made it with 2 different snap adjustments on each end. The other one I made with snaps on one end, and a clip on the other. That way I can clip it to the baby's shirt and snap the other end around the toy's handle or pacifier. Here's some pictures, they're pretty self explanatory.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Upcycled Cowl Neck Scarf

I saw this post at Diary of a Crafty Lady last week, and thought that I HAD to make it. It's so simple! Last night I finally got around to digging out an old sweater, and went to work. It barely look any time at all. And isn't it cute?
I started out by finding the best place take the fabric from. It worked out perfectly (buttons and all) to take it from around the waist. 
I cut a slit up to where the buttons were, so I had one long piece of sweater material. Then I folded it in half lengthwise. Turning it button side in, I sewed the cut edge together, so I had a long tube. Then I turned it button side out. 
Once I figured out how the buttons were going to connect, I had to snip them off and sew them on the other side, and cut new button holes. 
Here's the finished product!
You gota love how the pea coat makes way for my gigantically 35 week pregnant tummy! (I'm not normally this wide).

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Elegant Centerpiece

Just wanted to show off some pictures of our super simple centerpiece for Christmas! Some fresh cranberries and floating candles in water, and evergreen branches. Doesn't get any simpler than that, but it's so elegant and festive!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Caramel Apple Pie and fool proof crust

The original recipe I started out with came from Food Network. I deviated from the recipe the first time, and wasn't very happy with the results, so I tweeked it a bit this time, and it was SO tasty. I had to make TWO! (One to eat, one to give, of course). Unfortunately, I don't have an exact recipe, because I hate measuring! I basically just added a little of this and a little of that, but I'll try my best to duplicate it!

What You'll Need:
Pie Crust:
2 cups flour
1 cup Crisco
1/2 cup cold water
Pinch of salt

Pie filling:
2 lbs. apples (I used a mix of Gala and Granny Smith)
2 Tbsp flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2-1 tbsp cinnamon (depending on how strong you like it)
1/4-1/2 cup of caramel (I used Hershey's caramel)

Egg wash:
1 egg, beaten
Splash of milk
Sugar for sprinkling

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. 
Peel and slice your apples. Throw them in a bowl with cold water and a splash of lemon juice to keep them from browning. (If you don't have lemon juice, you can use 7 Up).
The crust recipe is my mom's "fool proof" crust recipe that she had given to her from a relative. I actually butchered it horribly the first time I made it. Like i said, I hate measuring! With this recipe, it will ALWAYS turn out as long as you measure precisely! I haven't had a problem with it since I gave in to my measuring cups.
Level off your scoops of flour with the back of a knife, and pack down your Crisco into the measuring cup. 
Combine the flour, salt and Crisco using a pastry cutter or a fork. 
When it’s well combined (a kind of mealy consistency), add the water.
Mix together until it forms a dough; try not to over mix. I used my hands for the last little bit of mixing.
Split your dough into 2 pieces to roll out. Flour your table, and start rolling out your dough. When it’s about 8 inches wide, pick it up, throw some more flour under it, and flip it over to finish rolling out.  I never have it get stuck to the counter when I do this. 
Roll out your first half of the dough and put it in your pie dish. It helps to throw it over your rolling pin to keep it from tearing. 
Trim off the edges with a knife.
Drain your apples. Add the remaining ingredients to the apples and mix. Throw your pie filling into your pie shell, and roll out the other half of the dough. 
Add the top of the crust, and pinch off the edges to seal in the pie filling. Poke some decorative holes in it to let the steam vent out.
Put your pie in a 350 degree oven, and set the timer for 30 minutes.
To make your egg wash, beat your egg and add a splash of milk. Take your pie out of the oven when the timer goes off. Paint the top of your pie with the egg wash, and sprinkle with sugar. Put the pie back in the oven for another 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, take your pie out and test the apples. Stick a knife or tooth pick into the apples in various places to see if they're tender. If they don't give way to the knife, put the pie in for another 10 minutes or so. If the top is already pretty brown, cover the top of the pie with foil to keep it from browning too much.
I was seriously impressed with this pie. It must be the BEST pie I have made so far. The crust turned out so flaky and perfectly browned! With the egg wash and sugar, it makes a crisp crust on top, almost like it's caramelized. It was DELISH!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Egg Nog Milk Shake

What You'll Need:
Egg nog
French vanilla ice cream
Whipped cream

Put equal parts egg nog and ice cream in the blender, and blend until smooth. Pour into glasses and top with whipped cream. Dust with nutmeg, and garnish with a gingersnap.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Introducing.. Fudge Ripple!

I was browsing through the Tatertots and Jello link party on Thursday night.. and this particular blog caught my eye. As I looked though this blog, I found so many projects that I was bookmarking, so I figured I might as well feature her! 
These are ADORABLE! All you have to do it melt it in a cup of hot milk, and you've got a tasty cup of hot chocolate. I am most definitely trying these out soon, and making them for family and friends for Christmas! 

Words can't even explain how cool I think this is! I'd make it, but I'm afraid I'd have most of the candy eaten before it made it's way to the glue gun. Sadly, the project would never get finished. It did give me a horrible peppermint candy craving though, so chances are, I'll be buying some of these next time I'm at the store.
Eggplant parm has been rumored to send pregnant women into labor if they're near their due date. The day before my due date with Emma, I was online searching for recipes for Eggplant parm, but it looked like more than I wanted to take on. My mom made me a dish of Chicken Parm instead, and I went into labor the next day. True story! So in about 6 weeks, I'll be making this one. ;) It looks delicious!

I remember making ice cream in my baking classes, it was SO good. Homemade is always better than boughten. One of these days I'll go buy myself an ice cream maker.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Gingerbread houses

I was just sitting here, reminiscing about the years I spent going to school to be a pastry chef. We made so many tasty things! Last year we made gingerbread houses around Christmas. Of course, with it being a professional kitchen, we had a larger variety of tools and foods available to us. We made some amazing things! 
I think this year I'm going to make another gingerbread house, and use all the cool ideas I got from last year! Do you have any suggestions? I'd love to hear them! 
Here are some pictures of the gingerbread bakery that my group made.
The roof was made from sliced marshmallows.
I made these cute little marshmallow wedding cakes for in the window!
The window was made from gelatin sheets.
The tree was a paper cone. I used a star tip and royal icing to make the branches.

And here are some pictures of the other gingerbread houses that were made in the class. We were making a gingerbread village.
The church. I absolutely LOVE the design they made for it!
The jail. Aren't those windows so cute!
This was probably my favorite one, the school house. I love how they used the Wheaties for the roof! They also used little candy rocks to make the chimney.
The train station.

Mustache on a stick

I thought this would be a cute idea as a stocking stuffer for my nephew and nieces (and maybe my sister who has a funny sense of humor) for Christmas!

What You'll Need:
A picture of a mustache
Black card stock and various colors and patterns of scrapbook paper
Hot glue and glue gun
Elmers glue or Mod Podge
Bamboo Skewer

Find a picture of a mustache, or just free hand it. I Googled "cartoon mustache" and "clip art mustache" and found one I liked. Maybe choose a few different ones for variety!
Print off your mustache in the proper size, and cut it out for your stencil. 
Cut two pieces of scrapbook paper, large enough to fit the stencil. I did one side black, the other side was a cute pattern.
Trace your mustache onto your scrapbook paper. Holding the two pieces together, cut them out.
Spread your Mod Podge or glue on all but one corner of your mustache, and glue the two pieces together.
Add a dab of hot glue between your layers, and stick the end of your skewer in it, then squeeze it together to seal it. 
My favorite is the pin striped mustache!