Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Charity Doll Pattern

These are such cute dolls that are designed to wrap their arms around a very special child. They are called Dolly Hugs and are just adorable! The only requirement to get this free doll pattern is that you do not sell the final product. Be sure to to get the patterns to make the outfits also!

Dolly Hugs

Doll Pattern

Doll Instructions

Clothing Instructions

Monday, December 29, 2008

Veggie Pizza

This is another tasty, quick and easy recipe to make. The topping possibilities are endless with all of the different types of vegetables.

Veggie Pizza

2 rolls of crescent crusts*
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 pkg. dry Ranch seasoning
1 T dried dill
finely chopped assorted vegetables**

Place both crusts on a jelly roll pan and pinch seam to form one big crust. Bake according to roll directions. Press down on crust to rid it of puffiness. Allow to cool.

Using a mixer, mix cream cheese, dill and Ranch seasoning. Spread on pizza. Cut pizza into squares. Top with favorite vegetables and shredded cheese, if desired.

*You can use the crescent rolls and pinch all of the seams. I just noticed at the grocery that Pillsbury makes a new product where the crescent rolls come in one big sheet. They are perfect for this recipe.

**I used broccoli, cauliflower, and shredded cheese.

Walking Taco

I just don't think it is possible to go to a festival, fair, or craft show around here without Walking Tacos being sold! These are so good and easy to make! Walking Tacos make a great party food, just have the meat and Fritos ready to go. Then, use a multi-section serving platter to hold salsa, cheese, sour cream, lettuce and tomatoes.

I have even cooked these for a quick and easy dinner. Ryan loves them!!

Walking Tacos

1 lb. ground beef (any ground meat)
1 pkg. taco seasoning
8 snack size bags of Fritos*
assorted taco toppings

Fry and drain meat. Add taco seasoning and water (according to directions on packet). Open Fritos and add about 2 tablespoons of meat. Top with favorite taco toppings.

*When making these for dinner, I only use 4 bags of Fritos because I use more meat for each taco to make them more filling.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Family Christmas Photos

Arya eating a Christmas cupcake

Jaiden as an angel at her Christmas play at school

Family minus Arya (too cold for her) downtown enjoying the Christmas decorations

Jaiden and Santa (I found a place that lets you take your own pictures w/ a canned food donation!)

The girls in their matching outfits outside our house

Light Up Snowman Wreath

These are so easy and look so nice lit up. I like to hang mine on my front porch.

To make these you'll need:
3 wreaths, ascending in size
floral wire
set of indoor/outdoor lights

Use floral wire to attach wreaths together to form snowman. Wrap lights around wreaths, going in and out of each wreath.

You can add a scarf and hat to wreaths if you desire.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Anybody Want a Turkey Leg??

We just got home from the store and discovered Daisy had gotten in the kitchen garbage. She found herself a nice turkey drumstick. She only gets in the garbage about once every three months so, we did think anything about taking the trash out before we left. There was a huge mess!
She looks so mean in the other picture. She didn't growl at us so I guess I just got a bad picture of her. Daisy is one of the biggest babies!!! She will come over to you and throw her body weight on your feet and roll over to her back. She'll wiggle until you decide to scratch her belly.

Daisy has probably gained 20 pounds since the girls were born. They love to feed her. Arya will stand there and sneak Daisy her chicken nuggets. They each must give Daisy 2 dog treats everyday. I wonder what kind of agreement Daisy worked out with them??

Thursday, December 18, 2008

And the Winner Is.....

Congratulations to Nikowa!!!

Please email me by clicking on the "Contact Me" link on the right hand side of the page. I have the DVD ready to go and with your address, I hope to have it in the mail tomorrow!!!

Thanks to everyone that played along!! I will have another give away soon!!

Christmas Links #4

Here are some last minute Christmas ideas as featured in Woman's World Magazine:

Talk to Santa "Trained" Residents of the Kindred Nursing & Rehabilitation Centers answer calls posing as Mrs. and Santa Claus. (Local listings by state)

Free Printable Gift Tags

Epson Creative Zone Labels for gifts in a jar, scrapbook pages, crafts, stationary, and Hanukkah cards.

Christmas Printables Treat boxes, gift tags, place cards, crafts, bookmarks, stationary, and cards.

Printable Boxes All kinds of printable treat boxes; including Chinese take out boxes

Shala Printables Gift card boxes, ornament boxes, and gift tags.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Nativity & Wagon Ride

Sunday night we took the girls to a local funeral home, of all places, to see the nativity. Jaiden loves to take sweet potatoes to feed the sheep and the donkeys (or mules??). We found out that on certain nights they offer free wagon rides!! The girls had such a fun time!! Arya wasn't sure about the animals. She just stared at them and screamed if they came near her.

One of the donkeys bit Ryan's hand. He thought Ryan had a sweet potato and was going for it! Otherwise, they all were very friendly animals!

We pass the nativity on the way to my grandmother's house so we have to stop there at least twice a week until they take it down.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Snowmen Candy Bars

These are what Jaiden's teachers are getting for Christmas this year. Really low cost and easy to make. The snowman is from Laurie Furnell. I believe the only restrictions on this graphic is it is only to be used for non-profit uses only. Just download the graphic and re size it to fit your needs. (I did this in a regular Word program)

You'll need:

1 large Hershey candy bar
1 fleece scarf ($1.00 at Deals Dollar Store)
aluminum foil (enough to wrap bar)
double sided permanent tape
snowman graphic by Laurie Furnell

1. Print out graphic. I took my to Office Depot and had them copy it onto a thin glossy paper. ($0.65 each copy)

2. Measure the amount of fleece you'll need for the hat by wrapping it around the top of the bar. Be sure to leave enough for a seam allowance.

3. Turn up bottom side to form a brim for the hat.

4. Sew hat right sides together and turn right side out. Position the seam so that it will be in the center back of the bar.

5. Take the foil and wrap it around the candy bar like you are wrapping a gift. Be sure to leave the regular wrapper on including the Hershey slider.

6. Cut the wrapper to size an center it on candy bar. Use a piece of tape to secure it to the bar and a piece to secure the end.

7. Place hat on top of bar. Fringe cut top of hat.

8. Cut a slim piece of fleece and use it to tie the fringe to form the top of he hat. Use a piece of tape to secure hat to bar.

9. Cut another piece of fleece to use as a scarf. Secure with tape.

I got these cute bags at Walmart of $0.50 that already had the gift tags with them. My total cost, including the gift bag, was $2.35!!!

Super Easy Indoor Wreath

Super easy and inexpensive; does it get any better???? I got the wreath and bows both at the dollar for for $1.00 each. I used hot glue to secure the bows to the wreath. I did pull off the paper backing off the sticky part of the bows to make the bows be more secure.

Here's the back:

Not bad for $2.00!!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Track Santa & Play Games

Here are some neat sites or kids:

Track Santa Come to this site on Christmas Eve and track Santa as he flies around the world delivering toys.

Countdown to Christmas Interactive games to play. Just click on any buildings in the town square for a different game.

Light Up Tree Game Fun but frustrating game. More geared to adults. My time was 966. I am going to try again!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Christmas Give Away

It's Christmas Time so I thought I would have a give away for all of my readers. This is a brand new DVD movie; Prancer staring Sam Elliott, Cloris Leachman, and Abe Vigoda. From the back, "Jessica Riggs plays an angel in her school play but becomes a real guardian angel when she finds an injured reindeer in the forest. Convinced that the deer is Santa's very own Prancer, Jessica vows to nurse him back to health and return him safely home.... The final magical scene is sure to make your heart soar!"

To win just leave a comment and I will do a random number generator to find the winner. This give away will close Thursday, December 18th at 6:00 p.m. EST so that the movie can be mailed out in time for Christmas. Be sure to check back after 6 on Thursday to see if you have won!

Pringles Can Labels

Pop Art: vote for my design If you go to Pringles Can Creator, you can print out some neat labels to cover your pringles can. It is free, just go to the right hand side after you choose your graphic and click print.

Quick, easy, and inexpensive!! I have heard where a lot of people send Christmas cookies in the cans so, that might be an idea!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Santa Pictures: Too Expensive!!

Last night we took the girls to the mall to run off some energy. (We have a mall here that gets no business. Mileage wise it's in between 2 very popular malls)They have a small indoor playground and with the cold and rain we needed to get the girls out of the house!! Anyway, we walked down the mall to see Santa. He was there and pictures were offered. I was going to get their pictures taken because Jaiden actually went up to him. Last year and the year before, she screamed and cried when she saw him. I saw the prices and about passed out!! It was $20 for a picture!! Your choice was a 5x7 or 4 wallets for $20. And, that was the cheapest price!! For around $50, you can get the picture put on a disc to upload on your computer.

I asked Ryan, "What happened to the $5 Polaroids???" Wow!! Has Santa pictures really went up that much?? What's the price in your area??

(Pictured is Santa, AKA Ryan's uncle Pat, 2007)

Craft Time: Take 2

Since the candy bracelets were a flop, I got out next week's craft for Jaiden. You can't go wrong with paint! I got the ornaments at Hobby Lobby for $0.25 apiece and the ceramic paint for $3.00. She had a great time painting them! I am going to string a cord through the top and she wants to give them to family. 2 thumbs up!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Craft Time: A Big Flop!

For craft time today I bought a candy bracelet kit at Walmart. I thought that since Jaiden could make pony bead necklaces, she could do this. I was wrong. She got so frustrated and just couldn't get the candy on the string. She told me that she hated this craft!

There were no ages on the box but, I recommend 6 and up! The kit comes with 8 individually wrapped packs to make bracelets. There is plenty of candy in each pack that allows some "testing" as the bracelets are made. This would be a great craft for the older ones!

Sushi Anyone??

Ryan's sister loves sushi so for Christmas I decided to make her some sushi ornaments for her tree. I got the idea from Craftster. I then decided to "take it up a notch" and make them look more authentic. I used glue dots to hold the soy sauce and chopsticks in place. Jaiden asked me why I had sushi. She thought they were real!

I am going to put them in a paper bag with a Chinese menu stapled to the top as the gift packaging.

I didn't take step by step pictures but, I will try to describe how to make them.

You'll need:
Yarn (red & white)
green felt
hot glue.
piece of cardboard

1. I cut a rectangle off a tissue box, about 2 1/2" x 4".
2. Wrap the red yarn around the cardboard to make the center. You will have to wrap several times. Cut end and tuck under.
3. Over top the red yarn, wrap the white yarn. You will almost need to double the amount of white than the red.
4. Slip the yarn off the cardboard and tie in center with yarn. Cut all of the loops. Position the red so it in the center with the white all around.
5. Cut felt to wrap around the yarn. Slip another piece of yarn (hanger)under the felt. Hot glue felt ends in place.
6. Trim up ends of sushi so that they are all one length and look neat and even.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Magic Elf Tradition

Some time ago, I stumbled upon this site: Organized Christmas. There are a lot of neat ideas there!! My favorite is the "Magic Elf Tradition"! From the site, "What would happen if one of Santa's elves came to your house to visit? He'd arrive sometime before the holidays began. Sent by Santa to check on good little girls and boys, he'd roam the house at night, popping up in the most unlikely places come morning. Sometimes, elf mischief would take place--and he'd be caught red-handed! Finally, on Christmas Eve, he'd report to Santa and hitch a ride back to the North Pole ... until next year." It a neat little game to to play with your kids. You will need to buy an elf and he basically acts as a spy for Santa. He sends Santa daily reports and makes sure everyone is being nice and not naughty!. There are printouts for a letter of introduction, his passport, his official report logs to Santa, and a letter from Santa.

Magic Elf

Here are some other neat goodies from the site:

Jiffy Popcorn Topper

Easy & Quick Gifts - reindeer dust, snowman soup, kisses whisk tags, and chocolate coffee spoons

Food Crafts - graham cracker house, candy cane reindeer, and chocolate kiss trees

Gifts in a Jar - candy cane & peaches and cream bath salts, dreamsicle cookies, M&M's cookies, brownies, pumpkin pie bars, Texas cornbread, and more!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

More Gifts & Projects

With 19 days left, I have been working my butt off trying to get presents finished. My sewing machine is usually "petal to the metal" until Chrsitmas Eve!

My family looks at my blog so I cannot post a lot of my presents that I am working on! I post them after Christmas this year. Until then, here are some more great links for decorations, gifts, and ideas!

121 Gift Sayings Neat sayings on how to give lots of gifts under $5.00

24 Quick, Easy, & Cheap Gift Ideas Nice ways to give those gifts under $5.00; complete with sayings

Mom's Shop-a-Thon Buy handmade assorted crafts made by moms

Black Apple Doll Pretty fabric doll

Shrinky Dinks Ring Really neat rings made out of shrinky dinks.

Snowman Paint Brush Cute decoration made from a paint brush

Peppermint Pebbles Tree Cute and stylish Christmas made with pebbles

Bottle Cap Charms Make really neat charms out of old metal bottle caps

Neat Gift Baskets Note: These baskets are for purchase but, you can get some really neat ideas!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Santa Belt Napkin Rings

I just think that these are so cute!! I saw wooden napkins ring last night at Hobby Lobby and instantly thought it looked like Santa's waist! This would make a good project for kids!! (And, yes, that is a washcloth in the picture. I do not own any cloth napkins.)

You'll need:
wooden napkin rings (mine were called "colonial style")
red paint
black paint
white paint
craft knife (xcacto knife)
yellow craft foam
hot glue

1. Base coat entire napkin ring with white paint.
2. Paint outside ridges with red paint.
3. Paint inside ridge with black paint. I used painter's tape to block of red rings.
4. Cut craft foam with knife to resemble a belt buckle.
5. Hot glue belt buckle to ring.

Popcorn Ornament

I have forgotten all about these ornaments! I made them about 10 years ago and forgot how much fun they were to make.

Very simple! All you need is microwave popcorn (natural; no butter), brown lunch bag, and a glass ornament. Open the popcorn and wipe any excess oil off of about 1 tsp. of the kernels. Take the top off the ornament and add the popcorn. Place ball in paper bag, put in microwave and fold down the top. Start out at 1 minute to see if any kernels has popped. You may need to increase the time. Mine took 2 minutes and I have a smaller microwave. Be really careful when removing from the microwave because of the steam. Replace top of ornament and tie a ribbon around the neck.

As a note: The ornament is not as yellowed as the picture makes it out to be!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Procrastination Challenge; Check!!!

YEA!!!!!! I finished Arya's room and completed my Procrastination project for November!!! I just cannot believe I let that much junk pile up in her room!!! If I sell everything at my garage sale that we carried out, I'll be a millionaire!! I think the junk included the following items, over 12 bags of clothes, microwave, microwave table, 2 rocking chairs, fan, broken heater, computer table, incomplete board games, and tons of baby items!!

Here are some pictures of my before: (Now to be quite honest, these are not the before pictures. These are what I am calling the before but they are actually in "middle". I was too embarrassed to post actual before pictures!!)

And of course, the after! It actually looks like a little girl's room now!

I don't know if I stated this before, the whole point of this project was to get my Christmas tree put up! I had to move the toys out of the corner of my TV room. To do that I had to carry the toys to Arya's room. But before I did that I needed to get the junk out. After the junk was out, I realized that this was a perfect time to paint the room from where we put new windows in last summer.

So do I have my tree up? Nope!! If has been so cold and rainy that Ryan hasn't gone to the cellar to get it. Plus we have had tons of Christmas crafts to do. Since I have the corner cleaned out, the girls have taken it over as a "pillow palace"! The tree is going to go up either tonight or tomorrow!

Also, be sure to check out My Personal Organizer for up coming procrastination challenges!