Friday, April 30, 2010

May's Thought of the Month

Imagination is far more important than knowledge.
Albert Einstein

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Plastic Pocket T Shirts

We've seen a lot of custom T shirt projects, but none that allow kids to customize their shirts on a daily basis. This shirt's clear plastic pocket lets kids display their obsession du jour

You need

T shirt/clear plastic trading card page/scissors/masking tape/embroidery needle/embroidery floss/flattish object to place in pocket such as photo ,iron on applique, artificial flower

How to

Cut 1" pockets from the center of a trading card page,leaving a 1/4 inch margin around the seams

Secure the pockets top and bottom in place with masking tape

Thread the needle with the floss,knot the end,and use a simple whip stitch to attach one side of the pocket to the shirt.Remove the bottom tape and continue stitching,leaving the top open

Remove the remaining tape. Place object in the pocket.

Note-- Always hang to dry to protect the pocket

Paper Plate Mother's Day Card

Make a sweet card for Mom out of a simple paper plate. This craft is geared toward the younger child.

You need paper plate/construction paper/black marker /pen or pencil/scissors/glue stick

How to

Fold paper plate in half:Fold a sheet of light blue construction paper in half and place folded paper plate on to the paper. Trace around the plate and set aside

Cut out your flower pattern. Trace pattern onto yellow,pink and purple construction paper. Cut out flowers Cut 3 strips of green paper 1/2 x 4

Glue stems and flowers to the folded paper plate Trim stems

Use a marker to write MOM on the flowers

Take the folded blue paper with the paper plate outline and draw a curvy line along the inside of the curved edge

Cut out the curvy piece,cutting through the folded paper,creating two identical pieces
Glue the blue curvy pieces to the outside of the front of the card and the bottom of the inside if the card

Chicago Style Hot Dogs

This will make enough for 8 hot dogs. Can't wait to try these this summer.

You need
1/2 cup yellow mustard
8 toasted hot dog buns
1 large ripe tomato cut into thin half moons
1 small cucumber peeled and sliced into thin half moons
8 hot dogs grilled to taste
Celery salt to taste
1/3 cup pickle relish
4 dill pickle spears,halved

How to

For each serving,spread 2 teaspoons mustard over toasted bun. Arrange tomatoes down one side of the bun and cucumbers down the other side.Add hot dog and sprinkle with celery salt. Top each with 1 teaspoon mustard,2 teaspoons relish and a piece of pickle

Ultimate Craft Organization Solutions

Wall Organizer--A plate rack with vertical dividers,a shelf, and a row of hooks provide flexibility for storing scrapbook paper,stickers, photo files, completed pages, unfinished work, and other inspiration. Use the dividers to file magazine, folders, and notepads, too. Label each divider so items are easy to find.
Coat rack Storage --Look for underutilized spaces with strong storage potential,such as bare walls. A simple coat rack provides versatile crafts storage for children or adults, especially when hung over a two seater table

Pin Up Boards--A pair of small cork boards provides a pretty place to hang scrapbook ready mementos ,crafts to do idea,or supply lists. Stack three cake stands for tiered crafts storage. Anything you get off the counter instantly expands your available work surface.

Hanging Craft Organizer-- A shallow hanging cupboard provides plenty of storage for small items, such as crafts supplies. Hang one cupboard or a pair wherever more put away space is needed. Add finials to the top to corral wrapping paper .

Mother's Day Gifts from the Heart

Here's a few more ideas for Mother's Day!! What a Dish- Turn children's drawings into decorative plates. Scan the art and print onto water transfer paper,available at crafts stores. Trim as closely as you can around the printed image,then place the paper in water until the decal slips easily from the backing. Position the decal on the plate and smooth out wrinkles and bubbles. When it's dry, seal the artwork with spray varnish. Mom will cherish them forever

Pretty Pansy Tray --Give Mom a vintage looking service tray lined in pansy motifs
Make color photocopies of vintage or new floral motif cards,then trim them and arrange on an antique finish serving tray. Keeping the arrangement , use thick white crafts glue to attach the copies in place Let dry
Arrange and glue on dried,pressed pansies and ferns where desired Let dry. Thin glue with water;coat decoupaged areas of tray
Pretty Pencil Holder-- Floral motifs cut from decorative papers beautify this set of pencils and holder-a perfect gift for Mom to take to the office or crafting station
You need
Ceramic toothbrush holder/scissors/craft glue/paintbrush/glass paint/decorative paper with flower pattern
How to
Wash dry holder. Choose a solid color paint that will coordinate with the decorative papers
Using scissors,cut out flowers or other printed images from scraps of pretty paper and attach to the holder with thick white crafts glue.
Cut decorative paper to cover each pencil,allowing a slight overlap. Glue the paper around each pencil
Dip the handle of a paintbrush into similar color of glass paint and dot the center of each flower. Place dots in groups of three between the flowers

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Skillet Vegetables on Cheese Toast

This sounds yummy, especially for vegetarians that are looking for something different

You need

8 sliced rustic wheat bread
1/2 of an 8oz pkg peeled fresh whole baby carrots halved lengthwise
1 8 oz pkg button mushrooms halved
4 cloves garlic chopped
1 small red onion cut in thin wedges
2 tbsp olive oil
4 oz soft goat cheese
fresh basil (optional)

Preheat broiler Place bread on baking sheet;set aside

In skillet cook carrots,mushrooms,garlic, and onion in hot olive oil over medium heat for 2-3 minutes until vegetables just begin to brown. Add 2 tablespoons water;cover and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes or until vegetables are crisp tender,stirring once. Sprinkle with salt and pepper

Meanwhile for cheese toast, lightly toast bread 3 inches from broiler heat for 1 -2 minutes Spread goat cheese on one side of each slice. Broil 3 inches from heat for 1-2 minutes, until cheese is softened

On plates,top cheese toast with vegetables. Drizzle with additional olive oil,sprinkle with fresh basil

Mediterranean Alfredo Pizza

Makes 6-8 servings. A nice change from the traditional pizza sauce

You need

1 unbaked pizza crust,frozen bread dough crust or Italian bread shell crust
1/3 cup Alfredo sauce
8-10 fresh spinach leaves
1 cup fresh mushrooms slices
1 small tomato thinly slices
4 canned marinated artichoke hearts slices
1 1 /2 teaspoons snipped fresh oregano or 1/2 teaspoon dried
1 1 /2 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese

Spread unbaked pizza crust with Alfredo sauce. Arrange spinach leaves over sauce;sprinkle mushrooms. Arrange tomato slices and artichoke hearts over mushrooms. Sprinkle oregano and cheese Bake as directed or until cheese is bubbly around edges

Painted Bamboo Cutlery

Transform reusable bamboo utensils with a few strokes of model paint, which can withstand hand washing To create stripes, tape off the areas you don't want painted using painters tape;then paint,let dry and ring the picnic bell

You can purchase bamboo flatware thru

Monday, April 26, 2010

Mothers Day Paper Plate Letter Holder

This is something a very young child can make for Mom!!
You need 2 paper or plastic plates/ribbon/sticker embellishments/scissors/craft glue
How to
Start by taking 2 plates and cutting 1 plate in half. You can use plain paper plates or more decorative ones
Glue your half plate to the full plate by applying glue around the uncut edges
Once the glue is dried you can decorate your letter holder with ribbons,stickers, paint or glitter
Finish off by adding a ribbon loop to the top for hanging or some large magnets to the back for a fridge organizer

Baby Update

I have an update on Jennifer!!! Mommy and baby are doing great !! Jennifer had an appointment this morning and the doctor said she is right on schedule in every way. Due date is still the same,Patty !!! She starts seeing the doctor every 2 weeks. It's getting closer !!! Can't wait for this baby,Jennifer is working very hard getting his room ready,and Grandma is sewing like crazy.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Tostada Pizza

My family loves Mexican pizza's, so I thought maybe your family would love this.

You need

1 lb ground beef
3/4 cup water
1- 4oz green chile's peppers drained
2 tablespoons taco seasoning
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 tablespoon cornmeal
1- 13.8 oz refrigerated pizza dough
1- 15 oz can pinto beans rinsed and drained
1 cup shredded cheddar or Monterey jack cheese
1 cup shredded lettuce
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onion
Taco sauce optional

How to

Brown ground beef and drain and add water ,chile peppers and taco seasoning mix and chili powder. Bring to boiling reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until most of the liquid is gone

Preheat oven to 400 Grease a baking sheet and sprinkle with cornmeal Unroll pizza dough onto the sheet Bake for 5 minutes

In a bowl mash pinto beans with a fork, spread over partially baked dough. Spoon meat mixture over beans Bake uncovered for 10 minutes until crust is golden brown. Sprinkle cheese and bake for 1-2 minutes until melted. Top with lettuce, tomato and green onions

Friday, April 23, 2010

Yummy S'mores Parfaits

A parfait twist on a favorite treat. Something the younger children can make for Mom to go along with the gift

You need
Graham crackers/jar hot fudge/bag mini marshmallows/8 oz cream cheese/cool whip/ Hershey's bar for garnish

How to

First crush graham crackers into crumbs. Then mix cream cheese and tub of cool whip , mix until smooth. Put about 1 tablespoon into the bottom of you dish. Then top your crumbs with some mini marshmallows. Then top that with about 1 tablespoon of hot fudge topping Then top that with some of your cream cheese mixture. And then repeat the process until your parfait dish is full . Top with whipped cream and garnish with the Hershey bar and graham crackers

Ladybug Rocks

Here's a cute idea for the little one's to make for a Mother's Day gift. They could make a couple little ones for a shelf decoration and a larger one to be used on Mom's desk as a paperweight. Ladybug's are usually red, let the children pick the color they wish.

You need

Smooth,round or oval rocks washed and dried
Craft paint
Wiggle eyes
Permanent marker
White craft glue

How to
Completely wash and dry all the rocks. Paint the rocks in desired color and allow to dry. Apply a second or third coat of paint if needed

Paint the head using black paint . There is no pattern needed, simply paint about 1/4 of the rock black

Use a marker to draw a straight line down the center of the rock,starting at the center of the base of the head

Use the other end of the paint brush or an eraser, to make the dots Once the paint is dry spray the rock with sealer Let dry Then attach the wiggle eyes and let dry

Flat Iron Steak with BBQ Beans

Another great idea for Mother's or Father's Day dinner gathering.

You need

2 boneless beef shoulder top blade (flat iron) steak
2 tsp fajita seasoning
1- 15 oz can black beans rinsed and drained
1/3 cup bottled barbecue sauce
2-3 tomatoes sliced
Corn bread(optional)

Preheat grill pan or BBQ Sprinkle steaks with fajita seasoning Grill steaks 8-12 minutes for medium rare

Meanwhile stir together beans and barbecue sauce Heat until well blended and hot

Serve steaks with sliced tomatoes, beans and corn bread

Spice Up your Buttons

Last but not least, sometimes all it takes is a crafty storage method to breathe new life into your button collection. Store buttons by color in a vintage spice rack to create a pretty and practical storage display

Accent an Album with Buttons

Splash a rainbow of multicolor buttons on a plain Jane black album cover. Attach bright strips of patterned paper to give each color block a clean edge

Gather a Button Bouquet

Pluck pretty pink buttons from your stash and wire them together to make a pretty bouquet. Look for round flat buttons in varying sizes that you can easily stack. Wrap the wire ends together with florist's tape,and plant them in a decorated jar for the final touch

Cute Button Projects

String button Toppers- To make pen and pencil button toppers,string wire through stacks of various colors and sizes of buttons. Twist to create spacers between the stacks and secure the ends. Tie felt ribbon around the wire. Wrap the writing utensils and wire ends together with floral tape to attach

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Broiled Lobster Tails with Garlic Chili Butter

Ok, here is the ultimate Mother's Day dinner. This recipe is easy enough for a beginner cook and will sure to impress everyone with the appealing taste of the lobster

You need

4- 6 ounce fresh or frozen lobster tails
1 teaspoon finely shredded orange peel
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 clove garlic minced
1 /4 cup butter
Clarified butter

How to

Thaw lobster if frozen. Preheat broiler. Butterfly the lobster tails by cutting through the center of the hard top shells and meat Spread the halves of tails apart. Place lobster tails, meat side up,on the unheated rack of a broiler pan

In a skillet cook garlic, orange peel and chili powder in butter over medium heat for about 30 seconds or until garlic is tender Brush mixture over lobster meat

Broil 4 inches from heat for 12-14 minutes or until lobster meat is opaque. Serve with clarified butter

Mother's Day Gifts from the Heart

A Mother's Day Candle -- Turn ordinary candles into shining stars with family photos and embellishments. Print photos or digital designs onto tissue paper and cut out the images. Wrap the candles with the tissue paper and keep it in place with straight pins. A heat gun will melt the wax until it saturates and coats the tissue paper. Embed a brad in the candle to secure the flowers
Cd Case Picture Frame --Combine a picture frame and custom music mix into one inexpensive gift.Cut a piece of decorative card stock the width of the jewel case and twice its length;fold in half. On the front,attach a favorite photo layered on one or two "mats" Slip the photo card into the jewel case with the fold on the outside, and use the back flap to hold the case open as a frame

Flower Arrangements for Mother's Day

Wrapped Up Vase -- Dress up a plain vase with grosgrain ribbon. Hot glue one end of the ribbon at the bottom,wrap it around the vase in evenly overlapping layers, and glue the other end at the top . Add ribbon tie and pin on a tag. After the flowers fade,the vase makes a cute pencil cup

Flower Arrangements for Mother's Day

Blooming Bows-- Lush living "bow" top gift boxes with sweet spring attitude. Slip the stem of a ruffly rose or peony through the top of a woven box or a slit cut in a paper box, and into a floral water pick hidden inside the box

Easy Flower Arrangements to make for Mother's Day

Here are a few more idea's for Mother's Day. I think these are adorable

Garden Party-- What a better gift for a gardening Mom than pretty tools for the labor and a hint at its lush rewards? Gather a riot of poppies,wrap a pair of garden gloves around the stems,and tie with twine. Tie on a hand tool to finish the package

Keepsake Boxes

Boxes this nice won't be hidden in a closet or desk drawer. Take two coordinating papers and wrap the boxes and lids.Find a favorite photo and put it in a small metal frame from a scrap booking store. Glue the frame on the side of the box,then give it to Mom on Mother's Day. After the big day,she can use the boxes to store photos and mementos

Mother's Day Gifts from the Heart

I have been searching for ideas for Mother's Days gifts, I hope you like my choices.

Helping Hand --Here's another way a child can lend a hand in the kitchen. Use a child's hand print to make a stencil for decorating dish towels.

How to

Use finger paint and card stock paper to make the stencil;cut out the shape.

Lightly spray the back of the stencil with adhesive,attach the stencil to a towel,and paint in the hand print with a mixture of craft paints and textile medium

Use fabric markers to add polka dots and the child's name to the towel.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Herbed Tuna Salad Sandwich

This is very light and refreshing and only has 9 g fat.
You need
1 pouch white tuna in water, drained,flaked
1 tbsp Sandwich Shop Garlic & Herb Naturally flavored Reduced Fat Mayonnaise
1 tbsp Parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 whole wheat English muffin toasted
1 lettuce leaf
1 slice tomato
How to
Mix first 4 ingredients until well blended
Fill muffin halves with mixture ,lettuce and tomato

Layered Bruschetta Salad

This salad would make a delightful and light summer meal

You need

4 plum tomatoes chopped
2 tbsp chopped fresh basil
1/2 cup Balsamic Vinaigrette dressing
1 pkg romaine lettuce
1 cup croutons
1 pkg Deli fresh chicken breast
2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

How to

Combine tomatoes, basil, and dressing set aside

Place lettuce in bowl,top with layers of croutons,chicken and tomato mixture Sprinkle with cheese and serve immediately

Natural Plant Markers

Unsightly sticks and flags look like trespassers in your herbs. Instead, make tags that appear as though they belong in your landscape. Find several flat, smooth stones, and label each one with the name of a plant using alphabet stamps and dye based permanent ink, both available at craft stores. Then nestle each stone near its corresponding plant

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Chocoate Strawberry Shortcakes

Make strawberry shortcakes even better !! Make the shortcakes rich and chocolaty.

You need

1 qt fresh strawberries sliced
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups Bisquick mix
1/3 cup unsweetened baking cocoa
2 tablespoons sugar
2/3 cup milk
2 tablespoons butter melted
1/3 cup chocolate chips
1 1 /2 cup whipped topping

In a bowl toss strawberries and 1/2 cup sugar to coat and let stand 1 hour

Heat oven to 375 Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray. Mix Bisquick mix,cocoa,2 tablespoons sugar,milk and butter until soft dough forms Stir in chocolate chips Drop dough by about 1/3 cupfuls onto cookie sheet

Bake 12-15 minutes or until tops of shortcakes appear dry and cracked Cool 15 minutes. Using serrated knife,split warm shortcakes. Fill and top with strawberries and whipped topping

Friday, April 16, 2010

Summer Centerpieces

Flowers and candlelight are nothing new,but together they create tabletop decorations fit for relaxed summer entertaining. Place votive candles in tall glass vessels,and attach a flower outside each,trimming the stem to fit and tying with raffia that matches the flower. Set each display in a saucer of water to keep the flowers fresh

To create this illuminating centerpiece, place a glass vase inside another that is slightly larger(secure them with floral adhesive),and then pour tinted water in between them. Pillar candles are best for this project;not only are they pretty,but their weight will further anchor the interior vase. For added light play,make a series of these centerpieces in different shades of the sane hue.

Hot Rod Backpack Straps

Some little guys we know don't like leaving their cars at home. Now they don't have to. Thanks to the miracle of Velcro,favorite vehicles can hitch a ride on kids' backpack straps, where they are both cool looking and available for action

You need: 4 or more strips of heavy duty adhesive Velcro sized to fit your cars/4 or more Hot Wheels or other small cars

How to

Measure and cut fastener strips for the cars' undersides. If the undersides are fairly flat,simply cut out strips that fit between the two sets of wheels. For uneven undersides, cut out separate, smaller strips of fastener to fit the flat areas. Press the adhesive firmly into place

Measure and cut fastener strips for the backpack straps,making sure they're long and wide enough to hold your cars.Press the strips firmly onto the straps. Let the adhesive set for several hours, at least,before attaching cars

Button Clock

How cute is this, I thought this would be really cute in a craft or sewing room. All you need is buttons and a cookie tin lid

You need

cookie tin lid/awl/nail set/12 buttons/cement/clock movement /

How to

Poke a hole through the center of the lid with an awl. Using a nail set, widen the hole to accommodate the shaft.

Refer to the dial template to position the button hour markers. Affix buttons with multipurpose cement. To assemble mechanism, follow manufacturer's instructions.

Cheese Garlic Biscuits

Do you have 15 minutes to spare? Surprise you family by baking a batch of these restaurant style biscuits

You need

2 cups Bisquick mix
2/3 cup milk
1/2 cup shredded cheese
2 tablespoon butter
1/8 teaspoon garlic butter

How to

Preheat oven to 450

Stir Bisquick mix, milk and cheese until soft dough forms. Drop dough by 9 spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet

Bake 8-10 minutes until golden brown. Stir together butter and garlic powder; brush over warm biscuits

Some More S'More Pie

Graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallows make this incentive pie into a classic dessert or snacking treat.

You need

Crust 1 1 /3 cups graham cracker crumbs /1.3 cup granulated sugar/5 tablespoons butter melted

Filling 5 ounces dark chocolate chopped /1/2 cup milk/2 tablespoons butter cut into pieces/pinch of salt/1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Topping 18 large fresh marshmallows

How to


Preheat oven to 350 Mix crackers,sugar,and melted butter until blended Transfer to 9 inch pie pan and lightly press onto the bottom of the pan. Back 12-15 minutes


Place chocolate in bowl.Heat milk and butter until melted. Pour the milk mixture over the chocolate. Let stand and then stir until chocolate is melted Stir in salt and vanilla and blend.Pour into the crust and refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight


Heat the broiler to low. Cut each marshmallow in half and arrange the halves ,cut side down, to cover the top of the pie. Place pie about 6 inches from the broiler element until marshmallow are toasted Serve when marshmallows are still warm

Lunch Money Locket

A kid will never lose his lunch money again if he keeps it in this homemade stylish locket made from a common mint tin. Dress up the lid with a toy plastic animal, fake jewels, stickers and more

You need

Small metal mint tin Make sure it has a hinged lid to pull a string through or around /acrylic paint/paintbrush/string or metallic craft cord About 3 foot length/tacky glue/embellishment

How to

Clean the inside of the tin. Paint the top and let it dry

Thread the string or metallic cord around or through the tin's hinges Pull both ends of the string tight, so that they fit snugly around the hinge,and then knot them together at the top

Glue your embellish of choice to the top and let dry

Tiny Bubbles

You and your child can send clouds of tiny bubbles skyward with this quick trick

You need: drinking straws/tape/dish washing liquid/light corn syrup or glycerin

How to

Instead of a traditional bubble wand, use a number of drinking straws bound together with a few pieces of tape

Dip one end of the bundle into a shallow dish of bubble solution( 1 cup water and 1/3 cup Dawn or Joy dish washing liquid and 2 tablespoons of light corn syrup or glycerin), then blow through the straws, being careful not to let the solution run down the straws to your mouth

The cluster of straws will produce scores of diminutive bubbles

Twice Baked Potato Bites

Serve up bite size twice baked potatoes for an easy and unique dish
You need
2 pounds red new potatoes halved
1 tablespoon olive oil
Course salt and ground pepper
3/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup snipped fresh chives
Preheat oven to 450 degrees Cut a thin slice off the bottom of each potato half so they rest flat. In a rimmed baking sheet, toss with oil;season with salt a pepper , and arrange bottom side down, Bake until tender, 30-35 minutes Let cool on sheet
When cool enough , scoop out about a teaspoon from the center of each potato into a bowl. Add sour cream and chives and mash;season with salt and pepper. Stuff potatoes with filling
Bake potatoes at 450 until lightly browned about 15 minutes Garnish with additional chives


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