Friday, October 21, 2016

Pumpkin Pie Cookies

 I made these pumpkin pie cookies last year.  I gave them out for Thanksgiving treats.  If you aren't a piping master, this is your cookie.
 I used this sugar cookie recipe and added karo syrup so the icing would harden.  It's so much tastier than royal icing.  I used the lid of one of my kitchen jars to press out the circles (I just held it up to the box to maximize my cookie size, but ensure it would fit).    I just squiggled on the 'crust' by cutting the tip off a ziplock.  I took a spoon and 'plopped' it on top of the cookie.
I found these little Wilton boxes that look like a pie container to put them inside (at Michael's).  I added a tag and ribbon.  So simple.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Freezer Meal: Pasta and Smoke Sausage

I'm in the process of filling my freezer.  I know some people do it all at once, but I've been doing it week by week.  I bought some containers at the Dollar Tree and when I make a meal that is freezable I cook half for now and half for later.  This one was hearty and carbo loaded goodness with all the right things.  The original recipe calls for peas, but I didn't add those to mine because after I discovered peas are a high carb/not so healthy vegetable....I gave those puppies up-vegetables and I have a casual relationship to begin with, I don't need to hang out with any that are bad influences.  I have enough of those in my life.  So, peas or not-that's up to you, but this one will stay on my freezer rotation.  :O)  The original recipe is from Taste of Home.
Pasta and Smoked Sausage
Ingredients:  2 c. uncooked penne, 1 lb smoked sausage (cut into 1/4 inch slices), 1 1/2 c. 2% milk, 1 can (10 3/4 oz) condensed cream of celery soup, undiluted, 1 1/2 c. cheddar french friend onions (divided), 1 c. mozzarella cheesed (grated, divided), 1 c. frozen peas
1.  Cook pasta according to the instructions.
2.  Place sausage in a pan and brown over medium heat (about 5 minutes).  Drain.
3.  In a separate bowl combine the soup, milk, 1/2 c. mozzarella cheese, peas, 1/2 c. onions, sausage and pasta.
4.  Grease 13x9 pan and place pasta mixture into pan.  Cooke for 25 minutes.  Top with remaining cheese and onions and cook until cheese is melted (about 5 minutes).
*To freeze place pasta in a freezer pan, top with cheese and onions.  Cover.  Freeze.  When you are ready to eat it, set it in the fridge over night.  Pull it out and cook as directed above (center should read 165 degrees).  

Monday, October 17, 2016

Potion Bottles

I'm headed to GMT today to do some Halloween crafts....including this jar which is sooooo easy to make.  I'll post the video later on facebook, the meantime...a sneak peak at one of three projects on the line up.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Halloween Treat Boxes

 I'm putting together a few primitive crafts to take to GMT on Monday.  I saw some treat boxes like this made out of toilet paper tubes and I knew I had to add it to my collection.
 I found some little pads of Halloween paper at Marshalls and cut them down to fit around the tube of toilet paper.  I also used some tissue paper to close off one end so it can be filled with treats.
 I printed off some free cat pictures (a Michael Mead download) and cut them out and taped them to a toothpick.
I took some cupcake liners and just sort of poked a hole in the middle and set them down into the tube.  You can also glue it down. These will probably be some place card holders this fall.  More to come on Monday!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

DIY Pegboard

I'm turning my guest room into a craft room.  All the guest I would have know I craft,'s time.  I've been doing a few projects over time and I'm just about to get started.  Paint and floors need to happen first, but then the magic happens.  I made a cork board I'll post about soon, but I knew I wanted a peg board.  I thought I might get a large frame a thrift store, but even at thrift stores they were more than 20 dollars.  BUT one evening I took my dog for a walk and someone had a huge frame out by the dumpster....
 I took it home and ripped out the glass/pictures/back so that only the frame was left.
 I grabbed a can of paint and gave it a good coating.
 Last I grabbed a pegboard from Home Depot and I used the inside picture to cut it down to size.  I also added to pieces of wood to the back of the frame so it sticks out a bit from the wall and I can put pegs on it.
So....for less than 7 bucks I have a 3x4 foot pegboard.  Dumpster diving is my new favorite activity.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Fall Wood Signs

 I bought a new jigsaw recently.  I was using one my brother left at my house over the last few years, but he took it away.  I also went all out and got a nail gun for my birthday (a gift from my brother)....and I currently still have his hand sander.  All that to say, I've been playing around with some wooden signs for the fall.
 Before I paint any sign, I've learned that a coating of exterior white house paint going on first (front and back) really helps the sign be weather proof, and additional paint layers go on thick the first time.
I always end my project with a layer of polycrylic paint (from Walmart) to add additional weather proofing.  The stakes I grab at the hardware store for just a few bucks...and everything is better with a raffia bow.  

Friday, October 07, 2016

Faux Copper Pumpkins

 I few years ago I bought some copper pumpkin lanterns that I fill with mums and candles.  This year I took a page out of the world of dollar crafts and I made my own with plastic pumpkins.
I just grabbed some spray paint and different sized plastic pumpkins (I love this current toddler size from Walmart that was about 80 cents.  It took one coat and now it's ready for a little potted plant/gift.  I'll be back with those results.

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

Glitter Glam Leaves

Here's a really simple fall diy=glitter leaves.  I just used the glitter I had on hand, and the light available in the evening, but they really are pretty in person.  These will be going into a fall centerpiece....just as soon as I clean off my dining table.  So....November maybe.
I bought this bag of leaves at Michael's, but I've also seen them at the dollar tree.  It doesn't really matter what color they are b/c you are going to cover them up, but I liked that they didn't have bulky plastic 'veins'.  I painted them with mod podge and then went to town with my glitter.  I shook off the excess and let it dry.  If you don't like glitter to 'shed' through the years, you can add another layer of mod podge over the dried glitter leaf, but it does dull it just a bit-it will go on white, but dry clear.  I'm used to glitter, so....glitter shed it shall be.

Monday, October 03, 2016

Pumpkin Painting-Gone Pickin'

I picked a picker last year.  He had all this random junk treasures...including this rusty old broiler lid.  He was at a parking lot sale.  He had junk, beautiful, beautiful junk.  This little lid got a makeover.  I love the rust and figured it'd needed pumpkins and a message.  I'm skipping the wreath this fall and adding a large broiler lid to my door instead.  Somebody has to keep the neighbors entertained.

Friday, September 30, 2016

Gold Trash Can

 Exciting things happening at my house!  My brother is moving out tomorrow.  A few months turned into a few years. The one thing I learned (other than a bunch of recipes and substitutions for vegans) was that I can live without a guest room.  So....craft room, here I come.  It's a long process beginning with patching and painting walls and redoing floors, big reveal too soon, but I did start on a few projects including a gold trash can.  I'm doing mostly bright colors, so this probably isn't the perfect trash can for the theme I'm aiming for, but it sure is fun.
I found a silver can at HomeGoods for ten dollars and I got a short cut bottle of gold spray (with a coupon).  I went ahead and taped off the black plastic, and then went to town spraying.  I saw one of these for sale on line (which inspired this project), but it cost 50 dollars and most of the reviews said it was dull and splotchy when it arrived.  Not that I was ever going to spend 50 dollars on a trash can, know....if I was...I just saved myself a lot of money.  They also have galvanized compost bins etc at Home Depot I originally planned to make my trashcan, but then my dog reminded me one of her favorite activities was pulling every piece of trash out of any can that doesn't have lid.  So...problem solved-I found one with a lid instead.  I love it and made mine for just about 13 dollars.  :O)

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Thrifting in Oklahoma

 One of my favorite things to do on the weekend is take a day trip.  I usually only do this on three day weekends...if then....but....with every mile headed out I feel free.  One of my favorite routes is north to Oklahoma.  I like to scour antique stores and thrift stores.  Over Labor Day I headed north across the Red River.  I've been collecting a few odds and ends for my upcoming craft room.  Mostly, I need functional pieces to organize my materials, but I wanted a few vintage items from OTHER people's craft supplies. I ran into one of my all time favorite stores and found a few finds.  Usually I just share the 'end' result of projects, but...I decided to share a piece to the journey this go 'round.  Anytime I decide to redo something the journey starts months in advance.  I start looking for deals and throwing around ideas in my head.  When it's time to put it all together I usually have most of the pieces I needed, and then I can just add to it over time.  One thing I know I want to store things in are cigar boxes.  I found a few over Labor Day, including one with unicorns inside...what?  Yes.  I also found this little pin cushion with vintage pins...which will go nicely with my pin cushion tomatoes I collected.  I also bought a little stack of books (4) for a buck, including one I'm sure I had as a child (The Night Before Christmas).  These I took up to work where I have a collection of vintage books.  I also found some seed packets from the 80's I took to work...our district's theme this year is growth for all, so....these will probably come in handy.  Again, it was a dollar for about 8 of these.
 OK, the hat pins....those I just couldn't resist.  All but one is from the original packaging...made in America?  What?  I'll probably put these in my craft room somewhere.  The irony of my hat pin obsession is that I never wear any sort of hats, so I would have been the gal without my hat once upon a time, but I just love them....I wavered on this one b/c I knew I didn't 'need' it, but in the end I've learned when I'll regret something I didn't get....and if the money is there I'll go ahead and get it and promise myself "I could sell that..." if I decide it's frivolous.  Trust me, I won't be selling these anytime soon.
 I also bought this antique pink bread box.  It reminds me of some of the color pallets I'm going for and I thought it might be a fun place to store some supplies.  The bird decals?  Those beauties are staying fo' sho'.  Random is my favorite decor pallet!
 Last up from the antique store was this ball jar.  It wa 3.50, but I had a bag of buttons I wanted to put inside from my pal Amber's little gal Charlotte.  Amber knows hat pins are second in my heart because buttons on number one.  I do love a good button.  When I was little they had these bins of vintage buttons you could get bags of at the old MJDesigns and I spent hours sweeping my hand through those buttons and making them click and clatter.
 As soon as I got home I headed down to Home Depot.  They had a deal on paints and I went ahead and stocked up for my craft room and a few other jobs around the house that need to get done sooner than later.
I usually buy one can of paint at a time.  I usually buy one antique at a time, turns out Labor Day was a gold mine for me.  ...and it's Ramen Noodles for October because even at the right price, it sure does add up quick....which is why I need a year to redo any room in the house!

Monday, September 26, 2016

Quilting: Flying Geese How To

I went to my annual quilting/scrapbooking retreat at the end of July.  This year I made a patriotic quilt.  I'll share more on that when it's back from being quilted, but in the meantime, here is a really easy and pretty fool proof way to make flying geese (which are normally really hard to match up, and I'm the last person you want trying to match corners and angles b/c I'm not known for being careful).  
For four flying geese you will need one square that is 5 3/4 inches (the brown one in this case), and four squares that are 2 3/4 inchese (the yellow squares in this case).  If you want your 'geese' to be larger or smaller, do the math and adjust accordingly.  I'll deal with that orange piece on another blog post.  
 Take two of the smaller squares and match them to two opposite corners.  The center will overlap a little.  
 Draw a line with a pencil down the middle.
 Sew a quarter inch to BOTH sides of the line.
 Cut down the middle where you drew your original line.
Press open and now add the third square to the corner of what is now a 90 degree angle of what is left of your original larger square.  
 Repeat the quarter inch sewing down both sides of this new lines.
Cut again down the line your drew.  Repeat with the other side of your original square.  
Press open.
 You now have four pretty perfect flying geese.