Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Pom Pom Fall Wreath

I recently made this wreath for my friend.  I have about 17 million extra wreaths at my house, so when I was thinking about making some fall d├ęcor, I called up my pal Kelly and asked her if she would use this on her door.  I've been really into pom poms lately, so....which not make a million of them, tie them to a wire wreath, and call it a project?  When we chatted, she mentioned interchangeable decorations, and so I made some vintage cats and leaves and added clothes pins to the back so they can be attached....
 It really was a super easy project, it just took some time to make all those pom poms, but....that's what tv is for, right?  I wrapped and vegged.  I used this brand and a color called burnt pumpkin.  It did end up taking two rolls of it.  I bought it at Hobby Lobby (not sure if they sell it everywhere, but....just to save on searching).
 I just used some super cheap felt and cut out some leaf shapes and cats and added some decorations.  I hot glued the clothes pins and then put an extra square of felt across the back to secure them further.
 I really think I'm going to make a few more of these for different seasons b/c I'm a fan!

Monday, August 20, 2018

Baby Boy Gift Card

I TRY to make homemade cards as much as possible.  When I'm on top of my game (all both days of the year), I'll make them in advance and have them ready to address when the announcements start rolling in.  I recently made some pink baby cards, but I realized everyone won't necessarily be having girls (though it currently feels that way), so....I put together a few boy cards for my collection.  I had these polka dot cards from Hobby Lobby (and the polka dot scrapbook page, and crocheted flowers (a line called Poppies and Paperie).  I took some scrap fabric and sewed in to the card using a zig zag stitch and then attached the other pieces with glue.
Next up....more birthday cards b/c these people just keep on insisting on celebrating their birthdays.….

Friday, August 17, 2018

Orange Rolls


I recently got the Magnolia Table cook book for my birthday.  I saw a recipe for Orange Rolls using canned crescent rolls, and I thought NO WAY.  If you have ever slaved away proofing cinnamon roll dough, you'll understand my doubts when it came to this short cut, but you know what?  These.  Were.  Amazing.  Seriously, so delicious that when I tell you my mouth is watering, it's not just b/c I don't know how to describe the level of flavor, it literally is water.  The hardest thing about the recipe was zesting an orange....and that wasn't hard.  I can't wait to try these out with different flavor combinations.  Forget that.  I can't wait to just try these out with oranges.  The only adjustment I made was I used 3 large oranges (instead of the 5 'oranges'....no size given).  I didn't actually flip out my rolls, so there was also a LOT of butter swimming in the pan.  I mean, is butter ever a bad thing?  BUT if you don't do that step, cut the butter back.   I also always buy a name brand crescent roll b/c I have found some of the off brands don't taste as good.    But I might try and cut back to one stick next time.  I'm going to write the recipe as I made it, and adjust that later if it works.  I can't WAIT to try out some more recipes in the book.  
Magnolia Orange Rolls
Roll Ingredients:  12 T of salted butter (1 1/2 stick at room temperature), 3/4 c. packed brown sugar, 4 t. packed, finely grated orange zest (I just zested 1 large orange), 1 t. cinnamon, 2 cans (8 oz) canned crescent rolls, 1 c. chopped walnuts
Glaze Ingredients:  2 c. powdered sugar, finely grated zest of 2 (large) oranges, 2 t. vanilla, 1/2 c. orange juice (I used the ones I zested)
Instructions:  
1.  Preheat oven to 375.  
2.  Mix the softened (not melted) butter, brown sugar, orange zest, and cinnamon.  Use a fork to mash it together and make a paste.  
3.  Open one can of dough and unroll onto a work surface.  Press perforations closed to make single rectangle.  Spread half the butter mix evenly over the dough.  Scatter with half the walnuts.  Start with the long side and roll up to form a log.  Cut into 6 equal pieces.  
4.  Repeat with second can of dough.  
5.  Place into 8 inch round cake pan (I used an 8x10 inch rectangle pan and it worked great).  
6.  Bake for 30 minutes (until they have a deep golden brown color).  
7.  While it's baking, make the glaze by mixing all the ingredients.  
8.  Invert the rolls into a serving plate.  Let them stand for 5 minutes and then drizzle with the glaze.  
9.  Serve warm.  Store up to 2 days in an airtight container.  

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Baby Girl Card

I threw a shower a few weeks back.  I had two bags left over from the cookie bar.  I started to put them in my stash of 'stuff' to use someday....but then I got to thinking, I needed some more baby cards (I keep a stash-ready to roll with the babies start showing up)-I decided these would be cute sleeves for a card instead.
I glued down the back of the bag so it won't flap up, and then I made a little slide in tag using some papers from Hobby Lobby.  I added some bows and jewels (also from Hobby Lobby).
Once these have a destination, I'll add the Mom's name to the front.
I bought some envelopes for half off as well so I can mail these.

Monday, August 13, 2018

Pom Pom Cupcake Toppers

 I recently brought these little pom pom cupcake toppers to GMT.  They are such an easy addition to some cupcakes for a football party...or really.....add some google eyes and make them purple and green and you have monsters for Halloween.
 I took two colors of this yard I got for a dollar at Hobby lobby.
 I wrapped it around my three fingers 20 times.
 I took another piece of yard and tied the middle.  Then I cut the loops.
You can trim down any pieces that are a little longer, but use your tie to attach these to candy pop stickers (sold at the craft store-or even in Walmart's party section).  Then decorate your cupcakes.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Bible Journaling Gift Idea

 My cousin's daughter loves art, and she's old enough now to really be able to get into more intricate work.
I always start my Christmas shopping in January to try to help with the pocket book.  As I think of ideas, I pick them ups, so gifts are ready to roll come December.  There are also a ton of birthdays in the fall, so this has kept me afloat.
This year I'm putting together a beginner Bible Journaling Kit.  I made her a personalized pencil pouch and got her the basic supplies (map pencils, water color, pens).
I also used a coupon at Hobby Lobby to pick up this bible journal bible.  It has some pages with pre-drawn pictures and words you color, and some are blank for creative interpretation.  My plan is to do a few with her to get her excited.  Now....on to the other 9,567 gifts.

Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Princess Baby Gift

 One of my good friends just had baby #4...and it was a girl.  She has three adorable boys, so we are all pretty excited they get a sister.  She also happens to be a Disney fan.  I went on a hunt for Disney themed gifts, and then made a few crafts to go with them.  I found this romper on eBay.  Her favorite movie is Snow White.  Then I made a little felt bow using this tutorial.  I also bought some elastic baby headbands from eBay.
 She named her baby Aurora Rose after Sleeping beauty, so I had to do a pink theme.  I made this name banner and a onsie with her name on it using my embroidery machine.
 I found a mirror rattle on Amazon and a little crown clip at Hobby Lobby.
I made a few other bows and sent this off.  Incidentally, this was the second package I've sent in less than three weeks...I'm all about the spoiling.  

Monday, August 06, 2018

2 Cheese Sausage Balls

Maybe it's just me, but when I've made sausage balls in the paste, the bottom 1/4 of the mix can be a little dry and sandy.  I recently ran across a recipe on allrecipes that used cream cheese.  This was the first time I've ever been able to use every last bit of the batter and bisquick.  Side note, they were still (if not more) tasty than the original.  So, if you too have guilt over wasted bisquick.....or just like cream cheese, try out this combo.  
2 Cheese Sausage Balls
Ingredients:  softed 8 oz cream cheese, 1 c. shredded cheddar cheese, 1 lb sausage, 2 c. bisquick.
Instructions:  
1.  Mix sausage, cream cheese, and bisquick with a mixer, or your hands.  
2.  Add in cheese.  
3.  Roll into balls (about 1 T)-this makes about 60 balls.  
4.  Place in the fridge for 10 minutes to let the cream cheese harden a little.  
5.  Bake at 350 for 25 minutes.  

Saturday, August 04, 2018

West Texas

I have lived in Texas my whole life.  I have had Big Bend National Park on my list of places to see for years, but I've never made it a priority.  This was the year.  Big Bend's peek is Thanksgiving and Spring.  I have to say, I pretty much had the park to myself on this visit (we were the ONLY group at all the stops and lunch).  It is, in fact, the desert, so it was pretty toasty, but....it's pretty toasty back in Dallas right now too, and I loved getting to see the sites without a crowd.  The mountains really felt nice, even midday, the canyon area was hot, and I don't think I'd do too many hikes (that's what this park is known for) during the summer, but I really just don't think there is a bad time to see the park.  I put it on my is to check off, but I definitely feel like I need to add it back to explore in a different season.  
 On the way down to Big Bend, I stopped in Big Spring at the historic Hotel Settles.  I stopped here last year.  It's about half way, the rooms are great, the restaurant is delicious, and they have a great pool and hot tub.
 Day 2, I headed to Fort Davis, home of the McDonald Observatory.  This is a trip unto itself.  They have night star parties, but I wasn't there on the right night, so I took part in a sun watch where we got to see solar flares and dark spots.  This is one of only 6 'dark sky' areas in the US, and this one has places that are close enough to stay to make this star gazing more convenient.
 As a bonus, we stopped at For Davis National Historic Site.  It's an old army encampment.
 We also had a lot of tasty meals, despite the less than promising sign....or maybe the sign overselling the sheer number of items available, I can't tell you there was a bad meal anywhere on the road.  Just ask a local.  They are friendly, helpful, and full of great tips.
 We also swung through Marfa.  Marfa has housed some pretty swanky movie stars throughout the years and is a stop on it's own.  This is also home of the famous "Marfa Lights."  Aliens or highway lights?  Regardless, there is a spot to watch and discern the truth along the road.
 I spent several nights in the CUTEST hotel.  The Gage Hotel is in Marathon, Texas.  These towns are LITERALLY in the middle of nowhere and I just can't believe how much they have to offer.  The closest Walmart is 60 miles away.  Most things are closed on Monday (and Tuesday), and there isn't much TO be closed, but what is open (stores and a restaurant at the hotel) far exceeded expectations.
 I don't know that I could do this hotel justice in this post.  Every little nook and cranny is filled with adorable, personalized, and unique details.
 Our rooms overlooked the courtyard with great seating in front of the room, and behind the room on a private patio.
 There are so many flowers and decorations all throughout the grounds.  Look it up, I don't want to fill up *your* device with too many pictures, but this is as much as I can narrow down hotel details for now to even give a taste of what it was like to get to hang out here for a few days!
 There are several entrances to Big Bend.  This one was about 40 miles from our hotel.  Some of the visitor centers were closed for the season, so it was probably an hour or more before we encountered some of the larger visitor centers.
 We only had a day, so the goal was to hit up one of the mountain views (Window View).  This is also where they have a restaurant overlooking this view and lodging for folks staying in the park.
 We took a 40 mile scenic drive called Ross Maxwell.  You wind through the dessert with overlooks at nearby canyons and mountains.
 The final destination on the drive was Santa Elena Canyon.  There is a short walk on a boardwalk to where you can go and stand at the mouth of the canyon where the river runs.
 Big Bend is a birders paradise and we saw our fair share of road runners and all their friends throughout the park (I'd need to do some real studying up to do them justice).  There are a lot of really unique cactus,  friendly looking trails, and again-great star gazing throughout the area.
It was just enough of a preview to let me know I'd definitely love to go do it again now that I know what I'm doing.  Above is a little quirky building I passed halfway between Alpine and Marathon.  It didn't appear to be open for business, but there is apparently the world's smallest Prada store with actual items for sale nearby....so....something for everyone!

Thursday, August 02, 2018

Reuben Sliders

Football season is when I bring out my appetizer recipes....or try new ones. I tried this guy last year for the Super Bowl and they were really delicious.  I love the varying Hawaiian Roll sandwich recipes, but this was a fun variation on a slider with the pretzel rolls.  I was able to find some at a grocery store near by that has a bakery.  The original recipe is from Bellyfull.
Reuben Pretzel Sliders
Ingredients:  12 (3 inch) pretzel rolls (cut in half), 1/2 c. Thousand Island dressing, 2 c. sauerkraut I used a little less b/c I'm not a huge fan), 6 oz sliced corned beef, 3 big slices of Swiss cheese (quartered), 5 T butter (melted), 1 T spicy brown mustard, 2 t. minced dried onion
Instructions:  
1.  Preheat oven 350.  Coat 9x13 inch pan with nonstick cooking spray.  
2.  Place the bottom of the rolls in a pan.  Spread with dressing.  Top with sauerkraut, corned beef, then cheese.  Place roll tops on top.  
3.  Whisk together melted butter, mustard, and dried onion.  Pour over the sliders and cover with foil.  4.  Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.  

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Football Wreath

I'm headed to GMT this morning to do football crafts.
I'll post the segment later on facebook.
I saw a wreath like this via pinterest I'm planning to bring..  The original watermark is from a website called mamadish, but the link is broken (I like to give credit where credit is due, but I don't like to lead people to hackers, so.....).  I adjusted the tutorial a bit....
I cut 1 1/2 inch strips of fabric and glued them around a Dollar Tree wreath with some hot glue.  It took me about four strips, which was perfect.  
 Once it was wrapped...
 I used some of this yarn (a dollar from Hobby Lobby) and wrapped it randomly (both colors) around the wreath to give it....some pizazz?  Depth?  Character?  You pick.
 Then I cut strips of felt about 1 1/2 inch and I fringed it to about 1/4 inch.  Then I rolled it and gued the bottom....this becomes your pom poms.
 I cut out little pennants and used some 'Thickers' (thick letter stickers from Hobby Lobby I got for half off) to spell out my team's name.  You could also use your Cricut or painted wood letters.
 I glued these on to some string.  I sandwiched the back to hold it secure.
I glued all these pieces on to the wreath along with a wooden football I got from Hobby Lobby for less than a buck.  Again, you could make these with felt, but I took the easy route.  
I have literally made 20-30 wreaths using similar techniques (yard, fabric, and that trust Dollar Store Wreath).  Scroll here.