Friday, December 31, 2010

GOODBYE 2010 .... HELLO 2011

... and I say this with great relief. 2010 has been a year I wish never to repeat again. It's been marked by much ..... insecurity, unemployment, betrayl, and a big dose of worry!!! However it has not been all bad ... we learned who our real friends were, we got to visit our families over the summer, I finally got to kiss and cuddle my little niece, and over this holiday season, we have been truly blessed by the kindness and generosity shown to us by people we do not even know.

As 2011 dawns, it's full of hope and promise - a clean slate.I wish only wonderful things for you and your families - health, happiness and prosperity.

Girl Child will be going to her first New Years Eve party tonight - a sleepover at her best friends house. I offered to send a little something to ring in the New Year. Girl Child and I decided to make some cake pops (my inspiration was the cutest, most gorgeous creations made by Bakarella!!!) - they turned out so cute. There'll be a plate of chocolate dipped strawberries accompanying them!!!!

See you in 2011, sweet bloggy friends!!!

Sunday, December 26, 2010


Wow, it's hard to believe that Christmas has come and gone!!! We now look toward the New Year ..... praying that it's a happier year than 2010 was. The thing I love most about the dawning of a New Year, is that it's full of promise and hope.
We had a lovely day yesterday, just enjoying each other ... good food, good company, and memories made:-)

As I've mentioned a number of times throughout the year, I took part in a year long Year of Enchantment Swap - it was an absolute blast. I was over joyed when Val (our lovely host), decided to host YOE 2:-) As a result of this swap, I decided to make our Christmas table centerpiece an enchanted one. Here is the result ...

I loved it, especially the use of non traditional colors. I found the cute little gnome ornaments on sale at Cracker Barrel for 50c a piece. I bought a few, knowing that I could use them later to make some more super cute pin cushions.
I hope you all had a fantastic Christmas, and that 2011 brings you all your hearts desire.

Monday, December 20, 2010


There are tons of tutorials for making these wax crayons all over blogland. They were a lot of fun to make (ok, so the paper peeling part was a bit laborious!!!). So much fun infact, that I made a bunch for our Church Preschool Christmas Shop.
These Christmas trees are for my favorite niece, as part of her Christmas present. Before you think I'm an ugly aunt who plays favorites .... I only have one niece, the rest are nephews who both share the number one nephew spot!!!

I like the way that they look marbled - I found that the crayon looked more marbled if I left the crayons in bigger pieces as opposed to smaller ones. My molds (Christmas tree and snowflake) were from the dollar section of Target, and I put mine in a 250 deg F oven, and it took about 20 mins for the crayons to melt completely.

These would make a quick and easy, last minute Christmas gift. My 10 year old even said he'd like some ..... I was quite pleasantly suprised by that:-)

Sunday, December 19, 2010


Well school is out and we have 2 lovely weeks to enjoy just being together:-)
I did need to take care of teachers Christmas gifts though, before we got out - this year the number of gifts needed was greatly reduced due to the fact that Girl Child moved across to Middle School. This gave me a little extra time to put them together ..... although I did leave it until the day before .... let's just say that I work better under pressure!!!
I had a new Simplicity apron pattern (don't you just LOVE the Hobby Lobby 99c pattern sales!!!) I wanted to try, so aprons it was. I love this pattern, and it may have just become my new favorite apron pattern - quick and easy, but still pretty.

This was one. I liked the fabric because it reminded me a lot of Vera Bradley, without the Vera Bradley price tag:-)

This one is a classic black and white - I think those 2 colors are so elegant together.

Then just a few days prior to making them, I had read a blog, where they talked about finding alternative, more eco friendly ways to wrap up Christmas gifts - this got me thinking. They suggested reusable shopping bags. I had some dish towels I bought at the after Christmas sales last year, so that's what I used. I just added ribbon and a snowflake tag cut from felt, and voila, I had a 100% usable gift. I even used safety pins in place of tape.

It's down to the last few days now, to get all those last minute Christmas gifts finished. We have knitting needles flying and the sewing machine whirring furiously in this house!!!!Enjoy your last minute crafting - it shouldn't be stressful, just a whole bunch of fun!!!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


This is a bit of a break from the norm for me - but these cookies were too good not to share with you. I don't know where the recipe comes from as it was written on a piece of paper. If I had to guess, I'd say it was most likely from a Taste of Home magazine, or something similar.

It was our Church Middle School Christmas Banquet tonight (wow, there's nothing like a bunch of dressed up middle schoolers to make you realize just how quickly they grow up!!!). I signed up to bring a dessert, and Girl Childs' choice was chocolate chip cookies. Let me just say now, I'm ordinarily not a cookie baker - I'll bake anything before I bake cookies!!!

- 2 cups semi sweet choc chips
- 1 stick butter
- 3 eggs
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 11/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 10 oz white choc chips


(1) Melt butter and choc chips (semi sweet) together until smooth
(2) Allow to cool for 10 mins
(3) Beat eggs, sugar and vanilla until light
(4) Add chocolate mixture to egg mixture - mix well
(5) Combine flour, baking soda and salt together
(6) Gradually add to creamed mixture
(7) Stir in white chocolate chips
(8) Drop rounded teaspoonfuls onto lined baking sheet
(9) Bake for 10mins at 350 deg F


Just remembered, I do have something crafty to show you .... another pin cushion I've made. This one is a thank you gift for someone.

Then lastly, because, when I see her all dressed up like this I am reminded of just how proud she makes her daddy and I - a picture of Girl Child all dressed up for the banquet tonight:-)

Happy Crafting Everyone!!!!

Friday, December 10, 2010


This will prove that I have been constructively busy ..... not just busy playing elf:-)
I have 2 quick gift ideas to show you. These were actually made as part of 2 different swaps, but they'd work well for teacher or neighbor gifts. Both took less than an hour each to make, and they both used items I had on hand. So, when it gets to 9pm on Christmas Eve, and you remember the one person you forgot, perhaps these ideas may come in useful!!!!

This is a Christmas Mug Rug - big enough to fit a nice cup of hot chocolate and 2 sugar cookies on - yummy!!! Speaking of which, I'm attending my 1st ever cookie exchange tomorrow - I'll be spending today baking and decorating 3 dozen gingerbread men .... or maybe the chocolate chip espresso meringues sound better ..... hmmm, decisions!!!

I got the idea for this pincushion (and the few similar ones I've made) from Elizabeths blog (Creative Breathing). If you haven't visited her blog, you're missing out, it is pure eye candy!!!It is 2 basic 6" circles of fabric sewn together, that I then embellished. I love them, and could have one for every holiday:-)

Elf antics ... well ....

They got into the fridge and made jello the other night - thanks guys for dessert!!! It must have been very chilly in there for them. Boy Child did point out to me however that they'd be used to the cold given they live in the North Pole - that kiddo is so logical at times:-)

Then this morning we found them "swimming". A tub full of fluffy cottonballs - the pool, my mini ironing board - the diving board, red facecloths - their towels and 2 very responsible life guards.
To the kitchen I go ..... until next time!!!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


There's certainly been a whole lot of that around this house lately!!!
So what exactly have those naughty things been up to.... well....

They had a night of sleddimg down the stairs (the sled was actually the plastic containers we wash dishes in when we go camping).

They had family game night last night - they played Tic Tac Toe, and colored a picture. Boy Child did decide however that their coloring had improved since last year:-) Note the little Christmas tree - he also decided at Lowes yesterday, that they needed their own Christmas tree!!!

They decided to picinc on my chandelier ..... crumbs and all!!! When will they learn that heights like this are just too dangerous for little things like them!!!!

Like all good elves should, they had some tub time .... in my washing machine!!! I must say though, those mentor elves are pretty responsible - those babies were wrapped all nice a warm when we found them in the morning:-)

There has been some Christmas crafting going on here - I promise.

I've had a few last swap packages I've had to get out - pictures will follow. I also need to take pictures of the Advent Calendars ..... that will be todays chore:-)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


And this day heralds the arrival of our 2 mischevious guests - Gabby and Bart. They arrived in suitcases (or lunchboxes as Boy Child explained to me), with their mentors (who are just as naughty, I might add),sometime during the night last night!!! One very excited child was awake at 5am this morning, to welcome them back .... the other child was slightly put out by the early wakeup call:-)
So we welcome back our 2 little elves..... let's see what havoc they can think up this year!!!

December 1st also marks the beginning of our nightly family Advent activities. As we have a guest staying with us at the moment, we kept tonight simple - hot chocolate and cookies just before bed!!!

The hot chocolate had all the trimmings - it was topped with whipped cream and sprinkles and a candy cane to stir it with. Notice the little plates - they are a Hobby Lobby find - oh so cute, and big enough to fit just one cookie on:-) A side note ... it is quite chilly here in Texas now, despite my shirtless child - he just hates sleeping with a shirt on!!!

I eventually got around to making the kids Advent Calendars this year - after changing my mind a hundred times on what I wanted to do. I will show them to you tomorrow.... they turned out to be very cute, and the kids liked them a lot!!!

Hope you're keeping warm wherever you are ..... oh, how I love this time of the year!!!!