Friday, December 21, 2012

Pinterest Find: Hot Cocoa Snowman Teacher Gifts

As of two days ago, I had no idea what to do for Cam’s five school teachers (yes, 5!!). Upon checking my Pinterest holiday folder, I rediscovered this cute snowman made of jars and containing marshmallows and hot cocoa mix. Fun! I think I pinned it in the summer, so I’m glad some rare forethought paid off. And since I have about a million baby food jars, this seemed like the perfect opportunity to use up something on hand.


Side note: my good camera is in the shop so I borrowed a friend’s Nikon…man, it’s a nice camera, but my off-camera flash doesn’t fit (obviously, since my camera is a Pentax) so my pictures are less than amazing. :P

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I followed the tutorial almost exactly. I hotglued the jars together, cut out little strips of Christmasy fabric for the scarves and glued on the buttons. I used Sharpie paint pens for the eyes, nose and mouth. For the hat, I changed it up a bit…the tutorial calls for paper but I had some black sparkle felt on hand so I cut the brim and the crown, fit them on the lid and hot glued them together so they can be removed as one piece. I cut out and glued a small circle to cover the lid and complete the hat. Done!


Hot cocoa mix is not rocket science, but I’m partial to my mom’s recipe which is a mixture of instant chocolate drink mix (we use Nesquik), dry milk, coffee creamer, powdered sugar and malt powder (if you like a malt flavor). As my mom says, “mix to taste”. This recipe is totally made up and can be altered however you like, I even added some cocoa powder cause I like a really rich chocolate flavor.

Mom’s Awesome Hot Cocoa Mix

In a gallon size baggie, toss in:

2 cups Nesquik

2 cups nonfat dry milk

1 cup powdered sugar

1/2 cup creamer

1/2 cup malt powder (optional)

Shake bag until mixed. Dip a wet finger into the powder and taste it. Alter taste by adding more milk (for less chocolate flavor) or adding more Nesquik or plain cocoa powder (for more chocolate flavor).




Thursday, December 20, 2012

Library bag

This year I participated in a book club. It gave me a monthly break from being a full time parent and gave my mind some necessary exercise. The December meeting always includes a gift swap so I made this gorgeous bag entirely out of fabric from my stash.

Fabulous book bag

fabulous book bag (3)I had seen a similar bag somewhere, though I can’t find it now (probably pinterest.) It was basically made with long vertical strips of different prints and background fabric and then they are sewn together long the long edges to look like books. The leaning on was a challenge and there was probably a less wasteful way of doing it but I made a large rectangle lopped off a corner so the seam allowance would line up to make it look as if they were touching and then I trimmed the edges so it would make a large rectangle with the others. Then I added a top and bottom border.


fabulous book bag (2)


As much as I like the front the back is what I’m most proud of. It is just a large rectangle of the background fabric with the borders cut to the same dimensions as the front.


I know it doesn’t look like much from a distance but let me zoom in for you

fabulous book bag (2)

I dropped the feed dogs and put on the darning foot and then wrote all the books that we read this year. Each row is a different month of books and if the month I filled in the space with the word read.

I’m happy to report that the bag ended up with someone who truly deserved it. She has been in the group almost since the beginning. I have a feeling it will get plenty of love. Though I have to say I did consider trying to snag it myself.


Monday, December 10, 2012

I-spy Swap Wrap-up

Your fabric squares are on their way! They went in the post on Saturday after spending Friday night getting the packages ready. Thanks to everyone for participating, I loved sifting through all the beautiful fabric. Here is a sampling of my favorites (I might have to buy a couple of them to add to my stash)










I can’t wait to see your creations. Remember to share them on our flickr page.


Friday, December 7, 2012

i-spy swap update

So I am still waiting on one package (which is on its way) but I am ready to start compiling the squares as soon as it arrives. Here is a peak at my living room. My husband is going to freak when he gets home.

Thanks to everyone who remembered to separate their fabrics into sets. I can’t tell you how many hours of work that saved me.


Hopefully the last package gets here today and I can send these out tomorrow. Otherwise I need to figure out how to keep my 3 year old (4 next week) out of this room.


Thursday, November 8, 2012

i-spy squares

Here are some squares I’ve received from some Local Swappers as well as my own.  Some people have asked about a flickr group for the swap which can be found here.

I am still looking for 5 more people for the second swap. If you are interested please leave me a comment on the original post.

Swap 1 (Ruth)

Swap 2 (Ruth)

I love the keyboard, and the spatulas are so cute.

swap 1 (Mom)

I bought some of the car classifieds to make a book sling, I love it. You can’t tell from the picture but the music notes have some shimmer to them.

swap 2 (mom)

How cute are the seagulls in rain gear.

Swap 2 (gloria)

The colors in this set are so vibrant, I think I am going to have to order the bugs in jars to make some PJs for Ash.

I am so excited to see what everyone has chosen. I’ll be waiting for the postman everyday!


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

An Out-Of-This-World Halloween!

It took me a few days to gather photos from our various Halloween activities, but here they are…better late than never!

Our family theme this year was “Space”. Cam had mentioned being an astronaut a few months ago and it was the only suggestion that I thought was do-able…any other time I asked him what he wanted to be it was always Lightning McQueen. Ugh! So we went with space…Clara was our alien princess, mommy was a starry sky and daddy was Space Ghost.


For Cam’s costume, I went with a pattern, McCalls 6417. It was simple and quick…a one-piece suit and a set of boot covers. Since I procrastinated the entire costume-making endeavor, I didn’t get authentic NASA patches ordered in time, so I painted my own using a Google image search and a steady hand. Ruth was in paper mache mode with Asher’s pteranodon head so she made Cam a space helmet…it’s a good thing she did, cause I had run out of time. It was hilariously oversized, but it made an excellent candy receptacle. He loved the costume!

 _DSC0290cam halloween 2012 here and austin 009

The icing on the cake was Cam’s rocket pack. Again, we were short on time so Ruth donated two perfectly shaped bottles and we taped them to a small plastic cutting board. I cut out some fancy felt flames and hot-glued them in. Voila!


Clara’s costume was inspired by a pattern, Simplicity 1769. I made her a short cape with 3 eyeballs on pipe-cleaners. The rest of the costume consisted of a comfortable baby outfit: onesie, skirt and tights, all handmade. I found a pair of florescent green knee-high socks at Target and turned them into baby tights. They were sooo easy! Hopefully I’ll come up with a quick tutorial for them soon.



Space Ghost was my crowning achievement. Brian’s such a good sport for putting up with a one-piece, back-zippered full body double knit costume. I used McCalls 6475 for the basic idea and added the feet, which I totally made up and it turned out great! The comparison pictures were taken the day after Halloween, and he had left his red cuffs in a bathroom somewhere! Oh well…it was awesome while it lasted ;)




space ghostDSC_0005

As is typical, mommy’s costume got left for last and wasn’t exactly what I had envisioned…the starry headband was the best part Just some wire and felt stars on a dollar store headband. Couldn’t be easier. The rest of it was thrown together from my closet along with a sheer starry gathered skirt that never quite fit right. Oh well…next year, I’ll start with my costume! (yeah, right!)