Saturday, December 18, 2010

A Few of the Christmas Gifts I've Been Working On! :)

Lately, I've been working on A LOT of Christmas gifts, but I can't post them up here as I make them because people will see them! :)  Here are some projects that I gave away today at Family Christmas Party #1. :)

This tray was made for my 14 year old cousin.  She looooves Zebra print. :)  This was one of those unfinished wooden trays from Hobby Lobby and I painted the edges and Mod Podged some squares and strips of zebra scrapbook paper to the bottom and painted her initial to add to the center.  Part of me wanted to turn it upside down, pretend it was a W and keep it. :)

I made these clips for the younger girls in the family.  The one of the left reminds me of a lollipop. :)  The pink flower was made with ric-rac and looks kinda like a rose! :)  I found the lunchboxes at Garden Ridge and used them as wrapping for the clips because I figured the girls could play with them or keep other hairbows in them! :)


I'm linking up with Along for the Ride for Saturday is Crafty Day! :)

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Christmas Cards Ordered and Sent!

Check out our snazzy Christmas cards this year! :)
Isn't the tree so cute?
And aren't we so cute? :) :)

Thanks Julia for taking our pictures that day! We love love love them all! :)

By the way, these guys came in the mail SUPER fast.  I ordered them Friday afternoon, got an email Saturday saying they had been shipped, Sunday they started traveling to my mailbox, and I picked them up Monday morning!  I spent the rest of the afternoon working on my calligraphy skills on the envelopes, stamping the back of the envelopes with my Christmas stamps, and stamping them.  I had them in the mailbox before dark Monday afternoon (which these days is about 4:45 or 5pm!!)  I was pretty excited as you can tell! :)

PS I scheduled this post to go up a few days late so Mom would see it in real life first haha! :)






Cool Tree Christmas
Turn your pictures into personalized Christmas cards.
View the entire collection of cards.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Sweet Potato Cupcakes :)

I made these the other night with one of the other girls in my building and they are really good! :)



How do you like the pumpkin shapes on top?

Here's the recipe:

2 cups flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1 stick of butter (softened)
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
2 cups pureed sweet potatoes (about 3 sweet potatoes)
1/2 tsp vanilla

Mix it all together and bake in a 350* oven for 18-20 minutes.

For the frosting, we melted some mini marshmallows and mixed them with some powdered sugar (a messy, but yummy process).  We then cut the marshmallow fondant into pumpkin shapes with a cookie cutter (...if you want them to not stick to the surface you're rolling the fondant on....don't go crazy with the rolling pin. haha)

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Glass Etching - Fun Way to Make Personalized Gifts!

I posted this tutorial on my building's blog last week
and I thought y'all might be interested in learning to etch glass! :)

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
We're etching glass tonight!  

You need:
Contact Paper
Clear Glass
Armor Etch etching cream
cheap paintbrush
something to trace (image, monogram)
sharpie
masking tape
rubber gloves
X-Acto knife
These are like the glass in the picture:

Step 1
Tape a piece of contact paper (still on the paper backing) over the image or letter you are tracing.

Step 2
Trace the image with a sharpie.  I find it helpful to fill in all of the areas that you want to be frosted so you know what to cut out later.  Place the sticker on the glass where you want the image to be.

Step 3
Can you see the lines where I cut around the image with an X-Acto knife?
That's what you should do! Trace around the image/letter.

Step 4
Start peeling away the contact paper to uncover the part of the glass that you want to be etched (or frosted).

Step 5
Looking at the glass now, everything that is uncovered will be etched and everything covered will stay as it is.

Step 6

Wear gloves for this part!!  Start painting the ArmorEtch onto the contact paper.  Make sure to cover the areas you want etched.

Step 7
Let sit for 5-10 minutes

Step 8
Rinse in the sink (still wearing your gloves).  Remove all the contact paper and your glass is done!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Oh Christmas Tree....

I'm linking up with My French Country Home to show off our tree this year! :)

It's an artificial tree that my parents have had for as long as I remember...but we hadn't used it in the house for years.  A few times, we put it on the front porch and decorated it there.  Now I've adopted it until (1) Mom decides she wants it back or (2) We decide to invest in a newer one.


This is a cell phone picture, but the lights stand out really well, so I like it! :)

I managed to find the star at the Dollar Tree a little while back and I loved it because it was orange, so it went wonderfully with my blue ornaments from Hobby Lobby.  The rest of the tree is decorated with Fireman-themed ornaments, Coffee-themed ornaments, a few Auburn ornaments, a few "1st Christmas" ornaments, a few gifted ornaments, as well as some older ornaments from when Adam was a little kid. :)

I think my project between now and next Christmas is to make a tree skirt.  Now it's a little too late, because the sad little skirt we have is already covered in presents...but next year I should have a pretty one!! :)

GRAB MY BUTTON

Last Monday :)

"And friends are friends forever
If the Lord's the Lord of them
And a friend will not say never
'Cause the welcome will not end
Though it's hard to let you go
In the Father's hands we know
That a lifetime's not too long
To live as friends"
-Michael W. Smith



Last Monday, I got to see one of my best friends from high school that I haven't seen in a long time.  Granted, I haven't seen many about 90% of my graduation class since May 26, 2005, but this one is different.  I haven't been able to just call her up if I had something to tell her (although I did find a loophole where I could feel like I was texting her...by sending text messages to her email. :) ).  I've written about her before...it's my good friend Holli who has been living in Mongolia as a missionary for a little over a year.

Well, she came back to the states for a few weeks and I got to hang out with her! We ate some delicious frozen yogurt, despite the chilly weather, and then just talked and  hung out for about 30 minutes or an hour.  She gave me some awesome fabric back that is orange and blue!!  I've got a few ideas of what to make with it...I just have to decide! :) The blue is the front of the fabric and the orange (sorry about the glare haha) is the back! I want to make something that will incorporate both sides of the fabric... :)



By the time she left, I was incredibly happy.  What a way to make a good day even better. :)  I do wish I had remembered to get Adam to take a picture of us before she had to leave.  I've decided we can improvise later over Skype and take a picture of both of our faces on the screen. :)

It was a great way to start the last week of classes. :)

Holli, I hope you have a fantastic Christmas!!! :)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Christmas Wreath!

Here's the Christmas wreath I talked about! (And the door to go with it!) As I get Christmas cards, I want to hang them on the door...although I just realized that I will only have residents in my building to see my door until Friday really...so they may never see any cards I may get! Oh well!! :)

PS In case you haven't heard....the Auburn Tigers are the SEC Champions!!! :) There were one or two people rolling Toomer's Corner tonight...ha. More like HUNDREDS!! People were standing in a line that wrapped around Tiger Rags to get a SEC Champions shirt that has the season's scores on it.  They look pretty nice I have to say! :)

I'm slowly updating my blog...slowly....this semester is wrapping up, so I'm working on studying for Finals, making breakfast for my girls during Finals, making sure I've got everything settled to graduate in May, and closing up the building for Christmas.  Next week will be quite calm though.  Everyone will pretty much be out of this town for the month.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

New Updates Coming!!

I've got a lot to blog about....but right this second not much time so....

Look for my new door decoration with a Christmas wreath...

And my first attempt at making a pot holder from fabric instead of those loopy things we all played with in elementary school...

An exciting (so happy I almost cried myself to sleep) day with my friend Holli...

And school is almost over for the semester....weird.  Graduation for my Master's is only a semester away!

I'll update everyone with more details later...I've gotta work on my list of things to do today! :) ((It's a busy day!))

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Cooking Failure + Cooking Success!

While I was at my mom & dad's house this week, I decided to make a loaf of white bread (they were out of bread, so why not?) Well, they didn't have any yeast, so I looked for a substitute online!  I found several sites that said lemon juice + baking soda.  Since so many people recommended it, I figured it must be safe, right?  Not so much haha!

Here's how the bread turned out...looks different, for sure!
I wouldn't suggest eating it unless you want that fresh-brushed clean....tingly foaming feeling!  Hahaha!


The next day, I decided to try a recipe I had been thinking about in my head.  Dad kept saying he wanted something to snack on while Mom was finishing up her sweet potato casserole and I was finishing the GOOD white bread (with yeast!!!).  I had been thinking about something along the lines of an oatmeal snack bar.  I asked Dad if he wanted cinnamon sugar flavor or peanut butter syrup flavor.  He voted for peanut butter & syrup, just like I guessed!

"Happy Snacks"
  • 1 1/2 cups flour (or bisquick will work as well)
  • 1 cup oatmeal
  • 2 T oil
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter (creamy)
  • 1/4 cup syrup (thick syrup like Golden Eagle Syrup or Loachapoaka Syrup Soppin' Syrup...if you're lucky enough to live in East Alabama or know someone who does!) 
  • 1/2 cup water
Mix everything and cook in an 8x8 sprayed pan at 350* for 30 minutes.

This is really good with more syrup poured on top. :) :) :)
If you want something sweeter without the extra syrup on top, try adding 1/4 to 1/2 cup brown sugar to the mix! :)

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Another Thrift Store Find!

Here is another skirt I found at the thrift store for about $2!

According to the tag, it was a part of a two piece suit.  The fabric is really interesting because it has the feel of upholstery fabric.  Although it's a solid color, it has raised designs on the skirt.  I think it's going to look really cute with a blue shirt...and I would have school spirit! :)

Before, it went about mid-calf on me (which made me look super short!!) and had a slit in the back.  The hips were a little big for me as well.  I shortened it about three inches so that it comes right above my knee, sewed up what was left of the slit, and took in the sides.  I'm quite happy with it! :)

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Thrift Store Refashion

A few weeks ago, my friend Callie and I spent the Friday shopping.  We found lots of great deals, especially when we got to the thrift store!  That day, everything with a blue or green tag was half off...and everything I found that I wanted had a blue or green tag!  I got a couple of skirts, a dress, and some wreaths to decorate! The wreaths started off as a straw wreath wrapped in plastic like this...
FloraCraft Straw Wreath 16" Clear Wrap (Pack of 3)

And when I finished it for Callie (she really liked my door decoration I made here....) it looked like this!!!
I left space for her to add ribbons if she wanted! Or she can leave it just like this!

I've also re-done some of the skirts I got that day (oh, and I'm still working on refashioning some clothes that belonged to my dad's parents for me to wear...keep your eyes out for those!

Here's one skirt (cost me about $2)...that I changed to a dress with very little work! All I had to do was take in the waist.

Before:
I made the dress form model it with my long sleeve shirt I made into a tshirt cardigan...backwards..hahaha

And after:
I love it!! I was going to just shorten it to my knee, but when I was showing the results of my shopping trip to the girls in my building, one of them suggested this...and it's perfect!  Like I said, all I did was take in what used to be the waist, so it wouldn't fall off!  I already had the belt in my closet...and I can just see this with boots and a jacket. :)

Here's a semi close-up of the fabric (I really just zoomed in...but you can sorta see the stitching on top of the design of the fabric. Nifty huh? :)




Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Need Some Gift Ideas? $5 and under on Etsy!

I did a treasury on Etsy of $5 gifts, and it was more challenging than I expected to find a variety of $5 gifts.  There are 3 necklaces and 3 pendants on the Treasury, but then it gets more exciting! I included some vintage dishes, a little home decor, a purse, a nifty notebook...and a laptop decal that I'm seriously thinking my laptop needs. :)  Here's a link! Five Dollar Deals

Speaking of $5 deals...here comes a shameless plug for my Etsy shop! :)
Right now, all the earrings and notecards in the shop are $5 and under.
 The pre-made Passport covers and headbands listed are marked $8-$10, but...
 if you order an in-stock headband or passport cover between now and November 30, write "5DOLLARDEAL" in the message to the seller and you'll get them for $5 each! (I'll refund you the extra money through PayPal). Of course, feel free to order some earrings or notecards as well!  Also, if anyone has feedback for my Etsy shop (prices too high, prices too low, things you think I should sell...) let me know!  I sew, etch glass, paint, make jewelry, cook, and I have a metal stamping kit I've been playing around with. Thanks!



Tuesday, November 16, 2010

By the time this post is posted...

I'm going to be feeling the results of this:



I used to have decently in-shape muscles from dance, and wouldn't you know it, they didn't really hang around after 6 years of not doing dance on a regular basis.  They started to show back up about two years ago when I took a dance class in undergrad, but they ran away again.  I still have leg muscles that hang around because I walk about a mile or more a day from walking or biking to and from class or other errands or meetings on campus, but the abs have disappeared.  I decided I needed to do something about that.  Running helps, but it's just not the same as a real ab workout.  I've got the degree that taught me all I needed to know to make my own workout, but having the video tell you that you have to do ten more crunches really makes you push through.  If I were to just sit here and make my own workout, I would probably stop when I felt "tired." My Exercise Science degree has also taught me that just because you're "tired" doesn't mean you can't go a little further.  Funny all that just came to mind...because guess what two classes I'm taking next semester while I'm studying for my Comprehensive Exams...Exercise Prescription and Exercise Motivation & Adherence.  I feel like they go hand in hand, don't you? :)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Etsy Shop: Candy Apple Designs

Adam and I have been Christmas shopping for quite a few months now.  We decided we may as well buy gifts for people as we seem them in stores and say, "Such-and-such would like this..." rather than hoping we remember what the potential gift was...and where we saw it...several months later.  Anywho, that said, I sometimes use that "we're shopping for Christmas all the time" excuse as a really good reason to browse on Etsy and see what others (or I) might like to have.  I've been eye-ing quite a few great gift ideas the last few months and gave in and bought something for us! :)

That said, I just got something in the mail today that made this cold rainy day more exciting!

Thursday I ordered this really neat Christmas decoration from Candy Apple Designs on Etsy.  It's a vinyl that she's made for you to put on one of those glass blocks.  I know Hobby Lobby has some with holes cut in them for lights, or you can just put a light behind the block.

Glass Block Center Nativity Scene
This is her picture from her listing here: Glass Block Center Nativity Scene

Here's what I got in the mail!
She threw in a surprise for me which I love! I'm trying to decide if I want to put it on a simple ceramic ornament, or a mirror ornament, or on a pretty bowl or dish to put out for Christmas...I've got lots of ideas running through my head! I'll see what they have at Hobby Lobby that looks interesting! I might even put it on a cookie stand or something..hmmm.  

Check out her shop if you have a chance!
Here's another Nativity scene in her shop that I love...
Nativity Ornament Vinyl Design

Oh, and I'm a fan of these chalk labels that I would put on my spice jar lids.
They're on my Amazon Universal Wishlist. :)
Get Organized Chalk Labels small or large set


Shutterfly's 2010 Card Collection (and other good stuff!)

Yesterday while my sister was in town, we were going to get her to take our Christmas card picture.  The weather wasn't very pretty so we changed out mind.  Plus, Adam pointed out that Christmas lights would be up soon downtown, which would be pretty! Anywho, when we finally take our pictures, we're going to have to pick between our favorites here: Shutterfly Christmas Cards

So far I like these the most...

This one is cute, but I think we'll only put one picture on our card: Peppermint Bliss Christmas Card

Adam said this one is his favorite, and it was one of my favorites too: Holly Frame Christmas Card

And of course I like this one because it's in French. :) Joyeux Noel Card

It's also about time for me to make a new calendar of us! Wall Calendars

I tried to link up the calendar I made last year, but the design is discontinued.  Here are some images from our calendar I made last year!
The Cover
March
July
November
I love it! :) 

In the past, I've ordered photo books, birthday cards, Father's Day Cards, and lots of pictures from Shutterfly and I'm happy with all of them!

For other Bloggers out there, you can get 50 free holiday cards from Shutterfly by going here: http://blog.shutterfly.com/5358/holiday2010-blog-submission-form/

Monday, November 8, 2010

30 Day Blog Challenge : Day 9 : A picture of your friends

This one is a little hard for me because I have lots of friends in many different places.  After high school graduation, most of my friends moved to different schools across the south.  I made new friends every year during my undergrad, and most of those have graduated and moved on to other jobs across the county (or across the world!)  During my Grad School years, I've made more friends, but even those are quickly finishing school and getting jobs elsewhere. Let's just throw in the fact that every year I have around one hundred people living in my building and I usually keep in touch with a decent number of those after they move out.  Needless to say, there is no way I have A Picture of my friends. So, I've decided to post a picture here of my friend who is living the furtherest away at this time.  She was my first "new" friend in high school.  We had 9th grade World History together and I asked her one day if she would save me a seat in the lunchroom while I went to buy my lunch (I almost always brought my lunch because my Mom is awesome and always packed one for me except on the rare occasion when I was craving whatever they were making at school).  Anywho, that was a very long sentence!!  So back to my story.  Holli (guess I just gave away who the friend is before I showed the picture!) saved my seat and I shared my onion rings with her.  We were lunchroom buddies for the next four years.  :)

Junior Prom (This is our reference to the song "In Love With The 80s" by Relient K

The day we got our caps and gowns for high school graduation! :)

Last day hanging out in the Commons at IB.

At her apartment at the end of Freshman Year of College

Graduating from Auburn!! :)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

30 Day Blog Challenge : Day 8 : A place you've traveled to

Here's everywhere I've been (if my memory is right and I didn't leave out any trips from our numerous family road trips!!!!! :) )  The longest road trip we've taken was our trip that included The Mall of America, Mount Rushmore, Crazyhorse, a huge sunflower field in North Dakota (oh and snow!), Custer State Park, and lots of random little stops between here and there! :)



Get Your Own MapView Larger Map

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Citrouille

Citrouille = Pumpkin

I <3 them.

I went shopping today and wanted to buy every pumpkin I saw...but I didn't!! :) :)

I did however get these nifty salt and pepper shakers! (I can't add the picture here...so here's a link!)

I bought myself one of these as well to keep (very hard to find) candy corn in! :)
Anchor Hocking Clear Glass Pumpkin Candy Dish
It's a smaller version of this:
70 oz Pumpkin Jar With Glass Lid

On that thought, I think I'm going to work on changing my blog background around to be fall-ish! (That's a technical term!!! :) )