Tuesday, December 29, 2009

9 Years Old

My daughter's birthday was in May and I am very happy to now have a couple of photos from her party on a layout.
The party was so much fun. One of my favorite things about the party was that each girl got to decorate her own pair of flip flops. Lots of ribbon, flowers and jewels were flying around our kitchen table! The cool thing about the project was that I already had all of the decorating goodies in my scrapbook room.Everything on this layout is from the SC January Kit. I am seriously loving the color palette of this kit. The blue background paper on this layout is one of my new favorite paper designs!

Scrapbook Circle's January Kit!

Here's a look at Scrapbook Circle's brand new January kit.I've mixed up bits of Valentine goodness that will be neutral enough to work for many other themes. I'm really enjoying playing with the fresh and clean colors!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Merry Christmas!

I have just enjoyed a wonderful Christmas weekend full of family and traditions.
My family is such a blessing in my life.
Wishing you and your family a wonderful and blessed holiday season!

I didn't think I liked beets...

until I tried them in a salad that my cousin made. Where have I been? Beets are sweet and delicious. Better late than never that I figured this out.

Here is one of my recent favorite salads. My cousin Amy made it (with slight variations) and now I can't get enough.One of my favorite things about this salad (aside from the perfect flavor combo) is that it is so easy to put together.

1 bag of spinach
1 can sliced beets
1 can green beans
1 can corn
1/3 Red Onion, finely diced (optional)

Open and drain liquid from all of the cans. Place 1/2 of the spinach in a bowl and top with 1/2 of the contents of each can. Sprinkle with some feta. Repeat layering of spinach, canned veggies and feta.It think this is great without dressing, but sometimes I use a little Fresh & Easy Caesar Vinaigrette dressing.

The colors are so bright and inviting. It's a perfect salad to make in the winter when fresh veggies may not be as plentiful.

Let me know if you make it and what you think of it!

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Wedding Gift Idea

As part of a wedding gift to my sister-in-law and her husband, I put this frame together with a photo taken at their wedding.
I used one of the Fancy Pants frames with acrylic used where glass would usually go. The acrylic is really easy to work with. It makes creating the inside of a frame much like creating a layout. I layered things both behind and in front of the acrylic. I wrapped the ribbon around the acrylic a couple of times. It gives a nice dimension to the project. Another great thing about the acrylic is that the paper doesn't have to cover all of the glass area. These frames have a cool effect because you can see through the acrylic area since there isn't a back to the frame.

Hope they like their gift!

Everything used to embellish the frame is from the upcoming January Scrapbook Circle kit.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

One Sweet Tree

Today I baked something that a friend used to make for our family every year at Christmas. She would give it to us on Christmas Eve so that we could have something sweet from Christmas morning.

I decided to try making one for our family this year.

Here's a look at how I put it together:

1. Start with frozen Rhodes rolls. Arrange the rolls so that they form the shape of a Christmas tree. My tree had 17 rolls. Place on a well greased cookie sheet and allow the rolls to thaw. (About 2 hours.)
2. Melt 1/4 cup butter. Make a cinnamon sugar mixture with 1 cup sugar and 1 tablespoon of cinnamon. Dip each thawed roll in the melted butter and then the cinnamon sugar mixture. Return the roll to the pan. Let the rolls rise about another hour or until they look nicely puffed.3. Place cherries in random places on the rolls. I used canned cherries, but you could also use maraschino cherries. These make the "ornaments."4. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 -25 minutes.

5. Allow the bread to cool and then frost with your favorite frosting recipe. I used some powdered sugar, a little milk, a little melted butter and some vanilla for my frosting. Place the frosting in a baggie and trim a tiny piece off of one corner. Use this as your fancy frosting dispenser.This is a fun, festive treat that would make a perfect dessert or brunch item.

Need a Quick Gift Idea? Give a CD

If you are looking for a last minute gift idea for a friend, neighbor or teacher, a CD with some of your favorite music placed in a homemade holder could be the answer.

Today I put together a simply designed cover to hold CDs with Christmas music for two of our friends.

Here's a look at the first case.
This was very quick and easy to put together.

1. Trim a double sided piece of patterned paper to 10" X 10".
2. Fold the paper in half and then open.
3. Fold in half the other direction so that you have 4 squares formed by the creases.
4. Cut on a crease from one side to the center of the paper.
5. Fold the 2 cut sides in to form triangles.
6. Glue/sew the edges shut.
7. Punch a hole and tie a ribbon at the top of each side for extra support.
8. Embellish!

I am thinking that the left side of this case is the perfect place for a note to the gift receiver or a great place for the playlist.Hope you are enjoying this gift-giving season.

Supplies: Paper: October Afternoon; Leaves w/berries: Prima; Alphas: Making Memories and October Afternoon; Ribbon from my stash

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Favorite Christmas Time Cookie

I'm not sure why I like to make these cookies at Christmas time since peanut butter and chocolate go well together year round, but here's a look at some of my favorite Christmas cookies.I've adjusted the recipe I once found online. My recipe a bit more peanut butter than the classic recipe and I prefer to use butter over shortening.

PB Cookies with Chocolate Kisses

* 1/2 cup butter, softened in the microwave
* 3/4 cup Creamy Peanut Butter
* 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
* 1/2 cup sugar
* 1 large egg
* 2 tablespoons milk
* 1 teaspoon vanilla
* 1 3/4 cups All Purpose Flour
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* Sugar to roll dough balls in
* 24 Hershey's Kisses, unwrapped

Cream the butter, peanut butter and sugars. Then add the egg, milk and vanilla. Add 1 cup flour and gently stir. Add additional 3/4 cup flour, baking soda and salt. Stir until combined.

Roll into small 1-inch balls. Roll the dough balls in a small bowl of sugar and place on cookie sheet. This dough tends to grow a bit, so be sure the dough ball aren't too big. You will want a nice small cookie so that you have the perfect peanut butter/chocolate combo when you are finished.

Bake at 375 degrees for about 10 minutes. Pull cookies from oven when they just start to have a slight brown color. You don't want to overcook them.
After removing the pan from the oven, press 1 unwrapped chocolate kiss into the center of each cookie.

Allow the cookies to rest on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes and then move to a cooling rack.

Try not to eat them all at once!

Monday, December 21, 2009

A Few Christmas Cards

I just wanted to share a few Christmas cards that I put together for my kids to give to their school teachers.
All of the cards are 4 X 4 inches. This was a great size because I tied each card onto a treat bag.Everything except the "Joy" flash card are from the December Scrapbook Circle kit. The "Joy" card is from Elle's Studio.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Gift Tags from Christmas Chipboard

I was inspired by Jennie on the Scrapbook Circle blog to use a few pieces of chipboard in my Christmas wrapping.

Using Christmas chipboard and some ribbon, I was able to add a little fun to my wrapping.

Here's a look at a few of the chipboard pieces at work.
I just wrote the to/from info on the back of the chipboard and then punched a hole and tied it to the ribbon.I loved using the candy cane chipboard with the candy cane wrapping.It was such a simple way to add a nice touch to each gift. I like that the tag is more sturdy than the usual paper tags that I use.

Hope you are enjoying your gift wrapping!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Chocolate and Peppermint: A Perfect Combo

I made these fabulous brownies this week. If you like chocolate and peppermint, then this is a must make recipe.

This recipe is great because it is very easy (you use a brownie mix) and it looks very festive.

Just mix up a box of your favorite brownie mix and pour into generously greased mini muffin pans. Put an unwrapped candy cane kiss in the center of the batter and then bake.
Once the brownies have cooled, spread a little bit of melted chocolate chips on top of each brownie. Sprinkle with crushed candy canes.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Quick Card Idea

My son was heading out the door to a birthday party today and we needed a quick birthday take for him to take to the party.

We only had about 5 minutes and this is what I put together.I love the die cut edges of Sassafras paper. Here I used one of the zig zag edges to go along the bottom of the card. This was a simple trick to add some interest to the card without adding any time.I roughed up the edges of the circles and the blue paper with my fingernail. I just ran my fingernail along of the edges of the paper. Sometimes I ripped the paper a little just to give the paper a little more texture.

With the help of my two circle punches and a number 7 sticker, this really was a quick and simple card.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Busy Creating

This has been a busy week for creating. Most of it can't be shown because it's been getting gifts ready, but I can share one food item I put together today.

It's hard to go wrong with a salty & sweet combo! I started with pretzel rods and broke them in half. They seemed just a little too long for a little treat.For the chocolate, I melted Hershey's chocolate chips in the microwave and then dipped the pretzels into the chocolate. The broken pretzel end was the end that was covered in chocolate.
While the milk chocolate was still hot, I sprinkled some of the pretzels with a variety of sprinkles or M&M's.

After letting the chocolate firm up in the freezer for a few minutes, I then drizzled the pretzels with melted white chocolate.These are bagged up and ready to be given to my kids' teachers tomorrow.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Dressing Up a Treat Bag

I enjoy baking yummy treats to share with friends. It's even more fun to do some creative packaging for the treats!

Here's a look at a quick way to dress up a baggie of cookies.
1. I started by filling a 6" X 12" baggie with about 8 cookies. The cookies were stacked into one pile that was just under 6" tall. I trimmed off the top of the baggie so that the ziploc part was no longer attached.

2. I trimmed two pieces of patterned paper (double sided is best) to 12" X 4.5." If you are recreating this project, just measure the cookie stack and adjust your measurements accordingly.
3. Next, I scored and folded the paper 3 inches from the end. The two ends met at the center of the paper.4. Then, I created the front of the treat bag cover. I just used scraps of paper from my desk . I trimmed them to 4.5" wide and tore the bottom edge. The papers are then layered and attached with adhesive. (I used a UHU glue stick.)
5. I then cut/punched the circles for the center decor. I didn't have a punch big enough for the biggest circle, so I just traced this tin. The smaller two circles were created using circle punches.
6. Next, I attached the circles. I added a chipboard piece to the center. I think it would also look great with a button or brad in the center.
7. Glued the ends of the project together. The 3" flaps on the ends overlap perfectly and can be glued together.8. Poke a hole in the top of the project where the baggie can stick out. I just used scissors and twisted them around until the hole was big enough for the top of the baggie to fit through.
9. Pulled the top of the baggie through the hole and tied a ribbon around it.
This idea is similar to this one. This is just a lot bigger and has both a flat top and bottom.

The paper and chipboard can from the Scrapbook Circle December kit.

Are you doing any fun holiday baking? I'd love links to your favorite holiday recipes! With your new recipes I can fill up more treat bags for friends.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Gingerbread House

Right now I am sitting near my kids' finished gingerbread houses and can smell the yummy gingerbread aroma. Mmmm....I think gingerbread needs to be made soon!

This afternoon, I put together this layout of the gingerbread house creation. The photos are all 2" X 3". I love this size of photo because it is easier to fit more photo on a page without narrowing it down to only a couple of favorite shots.These were printed at home on my Canon printer. I really only use my photo printer when I need a photo right away, but it really is so convenient, I should use it more.

Tonight is a date night with my cool husband! We are going to one of our all time favorite restaurants, Bario Cafe, and then to a Phoenix Sun game.

This is what I plan on having for dessert.
Photo Source
I very rarely get dessert while eating out, but this is one of my top 5 desserts ever. So it can't be passed up!

Should be a really fun night!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Uncle Devin and Max

Just a quick layout share today.I've loved this close up photo of my brother and son that I took this summer and I was excited to finally scrapbook it.

Most of this was created with the December SC kit. The green glittered alpha in the kit (love those Pink Paislee alphas!) didn't go with this layout. So, I just peeled off the top glittered layer, added some walnut mist and then had perfectly brown letters.

I used the brads from the kit to add a little dimension to the border of the circle die cut paper.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Candy Cane Kiss Brownie Bites

I need to make these soon. Very soon.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Some Etsy Goodness

Lately I spent a little time browsing Etsy and I thought I'd share a few of my favorite finds with you.

This Clutch
These Bright Coasters
These Earrings
This Lovely Ring
Cool Bingo Game Sketchbook
Ruffled Scarf
Tulip Cupcake LinersBird BagSo much talent out there. Love it!


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