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.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Witch Hat Pinata

 I've been wanting to making these for several years now.  I love mini pinatas.  I made these for a few friends kiddos.  Unfortunately, I have no idea where the 'beginning' pictures are, but below you can see I took a regular old dollar store party hat and cut a 'fringe' about 1/2 the way up all the way around.
 I then used glue and covered the whole hat with black fringed crepe paper.  I bought a bunch of little toys and blinking jewelry from Party City and filled the inside.
I then just took a black round circle and glued the 'fringed' part to the circle to hold it in place.  The idea is that the kiddos get to rip these bad boys open to get to a few Halloween goodies.  So simple, and really cheap.  One roll of crepe paper (50 cents) covered 8 party hats and then some.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Beach Scrapbook Pages

 This is absolutely not an ad.  I get nothing for saying this, or sharing this, other than...hey, isn't this fun?  I recently went to a retreat with some friends.  Some of us do quilts, and others do scrapbooking projects.  One of the gals who came had this box from a scrapbooking club she joined.
 Again, I'm just sharing because my Mom is getting into scrapbooking, and this is the second 'club' we have found for her.  My friend said it ends up costing about 30 dollars after shipping each month, but it comes with a different theme of papers, and if you are a scrapbooker, you will know that's not too much.
 Here is what it looked like inside the June box (which she VERY generously gave me because I fell in love).  There were tags, ribbons, stencils, bags, and all sorts of papers, cards, quotes etc to use for this vintage beach theme.  Each month has a different set of papers and goodies.
It also included some instructions for different ideas of things you can do and lay out ideas.  I went online and also (like Paper Pumpkin, which my Mom does), you can see what other people have done with the kit.  I used it to scrapbook some pages from a beach trip last year, and all the doodads on the page (minus some buttons I added and letters) came from the kit, and I have tons more to play with in the box.  
I probably won't join right now because I have so many unfinished projects, sure was a fun box to play with, and I might give it as a gift to some folks (cough, Mom, cough) who do have the time for things like this kit o' goodies!  

Monday, September 19, 2016

Ghost Banner

I recently went to a quilt retreat, and I was playing around with some scrap fabric.  I made these little stuffed ghost using old sheets I cut into a loose S shape.  I stuffed them after sewing them, painting their faces, and then cut out a simple haunted house shape from felt for the middle.  I glued them all to some fuzzy black yarn and ta da-a spooky little banner to add to the Halloween festivities.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Mouse Inspired Invites

One of our coworkers was having a baby and she didn't not know the gender.  She also loves all things Disney.  We decided to do a Mickey or Minnie themed shower.  I downloaded some free fonts that are inspired by Disney fonts and I found an invitation the other hostesses and I thought looked easy, but cute.  We came up with a little poem and then I found a free outline of a onside and printed it on the invite too.  
We just needed the lines to follow the shape to keep it centered, but we cut away the black outline.  I looked for washi to jazz up the onsie a little, but failed on that after two stores (I know it's out there, but I was out of time), so we glued some red scrapbook paper to the bottom.  Since it's a work shower, we made these for each grade level team, and then attached a card with each members name on it so they could RSVP individually by the work mail boxes.  I used some more mouse inspired gloves etc to make the RSVPs.  More details to come soon.  :O)
*Update:  This little mousekateer made HIS entrance into the world early!  It's a Mickey, and he also made his appearance before the shower, so....same shower theme (ish), but with a few changes since we know the gender!!  BUT...this was how the invites went out, but we are adapting a little to shower mama and baby in a month or so when they are feeling up to traveling!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Brown Sugar Oatmeal Cookies

I've been in the meal for oatmeal cookies over the last few months.  I call it breakfast.  Once upon a time, there was a recipe on the back of the cartons you would buy of oats, I've been on the hunt for the best oatmeal cookies and this one is definitely a top contender.  I liked it so much I even wrote it down on a recipe card, which I rarely do anymore because you know, the Internet.    It originally came from Pioneer Woman.  I cut the recipe in half because summer is only 9 months away and there are swimsuits and such that will need to be worn, but for now....I'll make these cookies and pile on the sweaters.
Brown Sugar Oatmeal Cookies
*makes 24 large cookies
Ingredients:  2 c. packed brown sugar (I used light, but she suggest dark), 1 c. salted butter (softened), 2 t. vanilla, 2 eggs, 1 1/2 c. flour, 1 t. salt, 1/2 t. baking soda, 3 old-fashioned oats
1.  Preheat oven 350.  
2.  Beat together the brown sugar and butter until fluffy.  Add in vanilla and eggs.  
3.  Add in flour, salt, and b. soda until just combined.  
4.  Add in oatmeal until just combined.  
5.  Bake 12 minutes (longer if you want crispy cookies verses chewy).  

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Dollar Store Halloween Wreath

 I made this wreath last year using dollar store items, with a few thrown in from the craft store.
First, I used these birds I posted about last year that I sprayed with black paint to look like crows.
I covered the whole wreath with moss (I just wired it on) and then added black roses, black Christmas balls and sparkle spiders (from Michael's).  

Monday, September 12, 2016

Pencil Pops

 I went into Good Morning, Texas today to post tape a pencil theme craft segment.  I'll be demoing pencil jars, a pencil banner, and finally, pencil pops.  I saw these on Pinterest, and the best I can tell the idea originated at Bakerella.  I modified it a bit so they travel well, but the gist is you take a white cake mix and pour 1/3 of it into a bowl and dye it pink, and dye the other 2/3 yellow.
 I decreased the baking time a bit and just watched it, and then once it cooled I cut small squares.  I used these push pops I grabbed at a craft store and push out a piece of the pink cake.
 I slipped it down into the tub.
 I then took some canned icing and put a line of gray (I just dyed it with a little black) over the pink (eraser).
 I then squared off the yellow and used the container to cut out the cake and then slip it down inside.
 I dyed the other half of the icing a light brown.  The original just piped up a cone shape and put a small chocolate morsel on top.  I wanted to be able to close the lid, so I actually made a little 'cap' out of a half circle of beige paper.
I just taped it to the top.  If you want to just pipe up a cone and add a morsel, I wouldn't use the canned icing-make a buttercream b/c the canned icing is too runny to really create any sort of form, even if you add a bunch of powdered sugar.  I'll post the video to facebook as soon as it airs (tomorrow?).

Thursday, September 08, 2016

Pencil Banner

 I'm headed to Good Morning, Texas on Monday....and doing a post tape I THINK will run on Tuesday.  The theme is pencil crafts for back to school.  This is 2 of 3.  A pencil bunting.
 I cut out some 'pencil shapes' from some scrap burlap.  Then I used this no fraying glue I got at the craft store and ran it along the edges so it wouldn't continue to fray.
 I then used some paint to paint up some pencils.
When it was dry I glued it to some twine.  It's super cheap and easy to do.  I'll probably add a word to these pencils once I'm done with the show so they can hang in my classroom at school.

Wednesday, September 07, 2016

Freezer Meal: Sour Cream Noodle Bake

 I have so many friends that do the freezer meal 'thang.'  You know, set a day aside to chop, dice, grill, and bake?  I'm going to do that, I am...someday.  In the meantime, I've gone a different route this summer.  I typically have a little more time during the summer (though, even that statement is questionable these days), so I try to make more meals at home, or the fast food folks start to know my name, birthday, and approximate ketchup requirements.  BUT, I'm single, so if I make a meal I have to cut down the proportions (you don't know how many half eggs I've washed down the sink in my years, yes I know you can freeze them, but....).  This summer I bought some disposable pans from Dollar Tree (three for a dollar, which includes the lids).  I started making a meal, and baking half in a small pan, and putting the other half in the foil containers and freezing them.  This way I have a wide selection of meals ready to go now that the school year is in full swing.
 This go 'round I made The Pioneer Woman's Sour Cream Noodle Bake.  I'm just going to tag her recipe, and say....I added about twice as much cheese because...really do I need to explain why I added extra cheese?
 I did put a layer of syran wrap over the meal I'll pull off before baking.  I wrote on top with a permanent marker, and then I'll just put in in the fridge to thaw the night before I plan to make it.
This is definitely a meal that gets better the longer it sits together (let the seasonings marry), so freezing it is the perfect solution.