Sunday, January 27, 2013

Crafty Valentimes

I go in spurts with my Valentine's craftiness.  Some years I've bought boxed Valentines, sometimes not.  I was pretty early this year in my planning.  Q (she's in second grade) picked these out from Pinterest:

They actually turned out pretty good!  Here are ours:
Here's what we did:  1.  Take string (I used white embroidery floss & pink/red baker's twine), cut 2 pieces into 6" length and tie in knot about 1/3 of the way down.  2.  Tape to box at longer end.  3.  Cut scrapbook paper (I used one pack of Target's Dollar Bin paper) down to box size (ours ended up being 3.5" x 8").  4.  Wrap paper around candy using tape to adhere on back.  5.  Print out labels.  6.  Cut & stick labels on front (side without tape seam).  7.  Attach Hershey kisses on to string using small heart stickers (tape would work too).  8.  On back or sides, write To and From info.

Here's another site that includes a printable and uses Reese's miniatures.  She includes a color printable which would be way easier, but I didn't want to use all that ink, and I liked the patterned paper.  I didn't want to do the Reese's because of nut allergies in my daughter's class.

Next will be V's daycare Valentines!  She wants to do heart-shaped crayons.  I've been furiously scouring the crayon bins for broken crayons to melt down, and I don't know as if I have enough.  We may have to go with Plan B.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Target Valentine's Stuff is the Best

Target has the cutest Valentine stuff!  One of my prior faves at Valentine's Day were red and pink owls.  I still have paper plates and napkins from that year.  This year, it's like French circus theme in aquas, reds, and pinks.  This is just some of the stuff:

Here's stuff that I bought the girls.  Love the strong man cups!  The covered cup twists so that the strong man can be mustached or not.  The covered snack cups in the shape of a tent would be so cute as party favors filled with candy.

Supah cute!!!  That Target!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

2013 Resolution: Read More!

I'm what you might call a binge reader.  I received Gillian Flynn's three books for Christmas:  Sharp Objects, Dark Places, and Gone Girl.  I read the first two in two days.  I am obsessed with them!  They are apparently both being made into movies.  The only person rumored to be cast so far is Amy Adams in Dark Places as Libby which I think is a good choice (although I see her more as the mother).

The third is Gone Girl.  Hmm.  I guess people really love it.  I tried to love it.  I do love her writing style, but I just can't get into it.  The thing that I love about her other characters are that most of them come up short on morals, but you root for them.  She somehow makes even the worst characters display a glimmer of likeability (albeit many times faint).  But with Gone Girl, I don't like or really care about anybody.  I don't like Nick.  I don't like Amy.  I don't like Margo.  I find them boring and kinda nutty with no good reason for being nutty.  Plus, Reese Witherspoon is going to be starring in and producing the film version which kinda makes me say ICK (even though I don't hate her, but I can't see it being good).

Anyway, I don't think I can finish it, but I'll probably read ahead to see how it ends. 

Any good book recommendations for me?  Anybody else read these books and love them?

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Averting a Pinterest Fail

How is your 2013 so far?  Did you have any fun New Years Eve plans?  We have been lazing around the house with the girls for the last two days reading new books, watching fluffy movies, and playing card games with the girls.  It's been lovely!  Oh, and eating.  My husband has decided that he is really into cooking lately (which is great for me!).  He made a whole mess of appetizers, my favorite being parmesan puffs (mmm  fried!), fontina fondue (with green apple was best), and bacon wrapped dates filled with goat cheese.  YUMZ.  Last week, he made Moroccan Chicken with Lemons & Olives, and it turned out very good!

We've been so lucky to have great neighbors on our old street AND our new street (which is right around the corner from where we used to live).  Our neighbors across the street brought over wine & two little stuffed bears for the girls the day after Christmas.  I decided I wanted to make some cute Pinterest New Year's Eve cupcakes for them.  Here are what they were supposed to look like:

Here is what the clock faces looked like after simply following their instructions (not good):

Those Wilton food writers they say to use?  They don't work.  At all.  Maybe they would work better on fondant, but they do NOT work on Oreo cream.  And they were expensive too. 

First off, you need to use a sharp knife to cut off the top layer of cream & Oreo crumbs.  Good thing I bought Double Stuff!  Luckily, I am a huge hoarder of sprinkles & baking products in general.  I pulled out my bottle of Halloween sprinkles containing confetti & tiny nonpareil sprinkles & pulled out all the black ones.  Then I sent hubby out in the snow to a candy shop to get black licorice strings (I'm not that mean-- he had other stuff to get, and it was on the way to the grocery store). 

Here's what I ended up with!  Did not nail it, but not exactly a Pinterest disaster either.  Give-worthy I'd say.

And here are the little labels I made to attach to the top of the cupcake box:

Feel free to use.  You can save these at the original size then paste them into a Word doc or otherwise.  Print out on cardstock or full sheet label sheets and attach to hostess gift bags, boxes of treats, wine bottles, etc., and I left a place to sign your name!  Voila.