Sunday, February 19, 2017

Preparing for Mardi Gras

When I saw that this week's challenge on the Fantabulous Cricut Challenge Blog was Sequins and Other Embellishments, I knew exactly what I wanted to do.  

Here is the challenge: 

Challenge #295-Sequins
Make a project that has sequins!


This Weeks Sponsor

Spiegal Mom Scraps!

Winner will receive a $25 gift code!

To qualify for the prize, be sure to use at least 1 Cricut cut on your project and if it's not obvious, let us know what cartridge you used. If you use a Cricut Explore machine, at least one cut must be from the Cricut catalog of images.

If it isn't a card, you will get two entries into the drawing!

Mardi Gras and Fat Tuesday are fast approaching and what says sequins (and glitter and feathers) more than Mardi Gras! (Well, the Oscars, but that's a post for another day!)  I decided to make a sign for my mantlescape.  



I took a 10x10 Artist Loft canvas board from Michaels (my daughters and I craft with these all the time) and covered it with black glitter paper from my stash. The edges are covered with gold glitter washi tape.  The mask is cut from Cricut Design Space (how did I not have a mask in my cartridges?) and is made of green glitter paper and edged with green sequins. The feathers are from my girls' craft box from long ago. (Why did I still have them?  I don't know, but I'm glad I did!)  "Laissez les Bon Temps Roulez",  (which hopefully means "Let the Good Times Roll!") is cut from an uploaded font on gold glitter paper.  I added a few purple, gold and green "rhinestones" because you can never really have too much bling on a project! 

I photographed this on my patio table (it is 70 degrees here!) because my house is being painted and there was no where inside to take pictures. I added some beads and some coins that will eventually be part of the mantlescape, along with the sign, when the paint dries. 

Why don't you click on over to the Fantabulous Cricut Blog this week to see what the other amazing crafters have created for this theme.  Even better, why don't you join us in the Challenge! 

Thanks for stopping in today! 

~Cynthia    

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Celebrating the Seventies (Degrees, that is!)

I have often said that I am blessed to live in God's country and never more so than this winter. With the exception of a "blizzard" in early January, we have had a very mild winter. As a girl who could easily go the rest of her life without seeing another snowflake, I have been a happy camper this year. 

This weekend has been weather perfection. My car thermometer read 74 degrees as I drove home from the grocery store.  



The flowers are blooming. 


The birds are singing. 

The berries on this bush are amazing!  Oh, and there is a very happy bird on top!

And I am in my preferred footwear.  


Aren't these flamingo flip flops from Old Navy cute?!?

I hope that you are enjoying a little bit of early spring where ever you are today!  Thanks for stopping by! 

~Cynthia


Saturday, February 11, 2017

Valentine Crafting Fun!

I love to celebrate holidays in all ways- including wearing a cute T-shirt when I can find one. This year I wasn't happy with the selection of Valentine's Day Tees that I found and my old one had seen better days.  As often happens with new projects, I was strolling through Michael's and found Iron- On Transfer for fabric.  It was PINK GLITTER! (and on sale!). OMG! Combined with an inexpensive shirt from Michaels I knew I had found the solution to the T-shirt dilemma. 


The Iron-On Transfer could not be easier to use.  Cut your desired shape (it can even be layered with other colors) and iron-on!  I used my Cricut and an image from Design Space, but you could even cut out your own shape to adhere.  


Of course, I forgot to take pictures of the process (I really need to work on that!), but the directions on the package are great.  You just need an iron (no steam!) and a dish towel. Because I was nervous, I went through the process twice, but I don't think I really needed to. I can see a lot of uses for this process, from holiday t-shirts to tote bags to seasonal pillows, decorative towels, placemats and so much more.  


Of course, sometimes a crafting girl needs to be reminded that Valentine's Day is all about snuggling!  Monet decided to plop down right in the middle of my "photo shoot" and get some love.  



I hope that you have a Happy Valentine's Day full of fun crafts and snuggles from the ones you love!

Thanks for stopping by today! 

~Cynthia


Sunday, February 5, 2017

Valentine's Wreath

I am really enjoying my role as a member of the Fantabulous Cricut Challenge Blog design team!  It is really challenging me to find new ways to explore my Cricut and more importantly, to find time to relax and craft! 

This week we are challenged to create a project about Valentine's Day. 

This Weeks Sponsor: D.L. ART- www.dianamlarson.com


To qualify for the prize, be sure to use at least 1 Cricut cut on your project and if it's not obvious, let us know what cartridge you used. If you use a Cricut Explore machine, at least one cut must be from the Cricut catalog of images.

If it isn't a card, you will get two entries into the drawing!

I got this idea about a month ago.  I might have changed my mind if I had truly considered how much time would go into it! 


I started with a green foam wreath from Michaels which I painted pink. I then started making paper roses using the Flower Shoppe Cartridge.  



At first I used the Recollections Pink Buttons Paper Collection, for some reason thinking I could complete this project with the 50 pages it contained. Lesson learned- always over buy materials if you aren't 100% sure!  When I went back to purchase more, they were sold out and it was 5 times more expensive to order it than the original price!  So I found some collections with similar pages and went on from there.  I lost count around 100 roses.  

To make the roses you must roll the paper from the outside of the rings to the center.  I used a bamboo shish-kebob stick with a slot on the end to help roll.  Glue placed on the inside circle holds the roll together. Apparently I deleted all of the pictures I took of the process, but if you have any questions, please leave a comment below. 


It was not difficult, but it was time consuming!  I do love it and I think I can use it through spring, not just for Valentine's Day, perhaps changing out the red ribbon for pink. 

Stop by the Fantabulous Cricut Challenge Blog this week to see what the other talented crafters have created for Valentine's Day! 

Thanks for stopping by today! 

~Cynthia 


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Saturday, February 4, 2017

Are You Ready for Some Football?

It is time for Super Bowl 51!  Do you have big plans?  Perhaps a viewing party or a simple family gathering? 


Due to a series of unfortunate events involving my household appliances, I have not yet begun my preparations for the big game.  I did get a few moments to look over some of my favorite snacks from past years and begin to plan my menu.  If you are like me and need a couple of last minute easy snacks for the game, here are a couple of recipes I compiled from earlier posts.  


We served these "Chicken Apple Pigs in a Blanket" for last year's Super Bowl.  My daughter and I took a class at William Sonoma last year right before the Big Game and learned to make these grown up pigs in a blanket- perfect for game day and so quick and easy to make! You can find the recipe for these, along with some ideas for decorations here.


A perennial party favorite in our house is "Mom's Cheeseball".  I included the recipe in my blog on the 2015 Grand Illumination Parade which you can find here. It too is super simple and can also be shaped into a football (or an Easter Egg for Easter, a Pumpkin for fall, etc.)!


We also love this "Mexican Layer Dip" that I shared on my Cinco de Mayo post last year. My friend, Lynn, shared this recipe with me years ago and we have served it during birthday parties, tailgates and as nachos with lettuce as a main dish.  Serve in a football shaped bowl that you can find at a Party Store.  The recipe can be found here.

If you need a quick and easy dessert, bake (or buy!) a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting.

Why wouldn't this photo rotate?  I just have a gift with appliances this week!

Color some vanilla frosting green and either smoothly frost the cake with it or use a piping bag and a grass tip and create "field" on the top of the cake.  Place a fondant football on the top (or you could use a new, clean small football instead, just be sure it is non-toxic).  You could do cupcakes the same way- bake in a brown or green cupcake cup, frost with green and place a chocolate covered almond lined with white frosting like a football on the top.  

I did get started on my game-time "decor". You can see my table cover at the top of the page. It is made of green carpet samples with white masking tape "stripes" on it.  The letters are vinyl made on my Cricut.  We will just have to see what snacks I end up making to place on it! 

Whatever snacks and treats you end up making (or buying!), I hope that you enjoy the Big Game and that your team wins! 

Thanks for stopping by today! 

~Cynthia


Saturday, January 28, 2017

Happy Chinese New Year!

It is the Chinese New Year- the year of the Rooster!  

To celebrate, I decided to try something that I have been wanting to do for sometime- make my own Fortune Cookies!  


I found a recipe online and decided to give it a try.  The original came from wondermomwannabe.com. Of course, I am not good at following directions, so I had to make some changes.  There is a great explanation and photos on wondermomwannabe.com if you want to give it a try or need better instructions. While the original recipe said that they were "faster", but they do take some time to make. Since they are not fried, they are more chewy than the traditional ones you will find at your favorite Chinese restaurant, but I really like the almond flavor.  

Easy Fortune Cookies 

2 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
3 Tablespoons canola oil
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 cup sugar
Pinch of salt
4 Tablespoons of water 
Electric or stovetop griddle, your preference
Tablespoon
Cutting Board
Spatula (I prefer an off-side spatula for this)
Mug or glass
Cupcake pan
Fortunes 
  • Write or print out fortunes.  You can find a lot during a Google search, some for kids, some very adult, or better yet, make up your own for your friends and family. Cut them into small strips and fold in half lengthwise. 
  • Be prepared- set out the griddle, spoon, cutting board, mug or glass, cupcake pan and fortunes in advance. 
  • In a small bowl whisk together egg whites, extracts, and oil.  Beat until foamy. 
  • In a large bowl sift the dry ingredients together until a soft dough forms.   Add water and mix until fully incorporated. 
  • Add the egg white mixture to the dough and mix until fully combined. It should be about the texture of pancake mix.
  • Turn the electric griddle to 325 degrees (the original recipe said low, this did not work for me). If using a stovetop griddle, turn heat to medium.   
  • Spoon a measuring Tablespoon of the mix onto the hot griddle.  Use the back of the spoon to spread it into a thin circle. I did one at a time, but you can do two or more, just wait about a minute in between. Time is of the essence. 
  • Keep your eye on the cookies, if it looks like they are cooking too fast, turn the heat down a little. 
  • Cook each circle as you would a pancake, until each side is a light golden brown. About 1/2 minutes each side. 
  • With the spatula, remove the fully cooked cookie onto the board.  IT WILL BE HOT! 
  • Place the fortune in the center of the cookie. 
  • Using the spatula to assist you, fold the cookie in half and gently press the edges together.  Again, IT IS HOT! 
  • Hold each side of the now half-circle cookie and fold over the side of a mug or glass.  
  • Place in a cupcake cup in the cupcake pan to cool and set the shape.  

Next time I may dip them in a little melted chocolate and a few sprinkles.  I saw some on Pinterest and they looked like a really fun treat for a Chinese New Year party or any celebration. 


If you do not have time to make these cookies today- don't fret!  The Chinese New Year Celebration continues for 15 days and this year will culminate in the Lantern Festival in the 15th day of the New Year! 

Wishing you a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year! 

Thanks for stopping by today! 

~Cynthia 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

More Snow?

For the Fantabulous Cricut Challenge this week, I posted a tag with a snowflake and promised to show you my next project, which the tag would be attached to.


A few days after Christmas I ventured into Michaels to check out their post-holiday sales.  I found a candy mold and decided to use it for another purpose.  You may remember that this past fall I began making soap, first the pumpkin and then the peppermint.  Well, I have become addicted!  Snow, no matter how I feel about it, seems appropriate for January.  So, wa la- snow soap!

Note to Self: Clear objects do not photograph well!  
I followed the same procedure that I followed for the last two soap projects, but this time I used clear soap and GLITTER!  That's right!  They make glitter for soap!  I sprinkled a little glitter into the soap after I melted in the microwave and then a little bit more into the mold before I poured the soap in. I wanted to add a little vanilla fragrance, but it added color, and I wanted the soap to be clear so I could see the glitter (even if you cannot see it in the picture!)


It seemed perfect after I started working on the Fantabulous Cricut Challenge, Snow, that I could make a cute little tag and package some of these little soaps as a "Just Because" gift for a friend.

These little projects are so easy, inexpensive and make great little 'thinking of you" gifts for teachers, neighbors, etc.  I'll be keeping it in mind for the holidays this year!

Thanks for stopping by today!

~Cynthia