Thursday, July 28, 2011

Vintage Teacup Gardens

I needed a little "Thank you" gift for my D-I-L, daughter and one of her friends and I wanted something unique.  My B-I-L buys and sells depression glass and he had given us these vintage teacups and bowls.  A while ago, I had seen on another blog (sorry I can't remember whose!) a cute little teacup with a variety of plants planted inside.  So, I dug out my vintage teacups after deciding I could do the same.

First I painted the sticks I used for the "Thank you" sign.  The sticks I used were sticks I had picked up for caramel apples.  Then I cut my sign using my Cricut.  I purchased a small house plant and transferred that to the teacups. 

The green teacups and saucers also had bowls with them.  So, I filled the bowls with Catchall Bars and wrapped it all with some plastic wrap.  Then topped it off with a bow.  I think they turned out great!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Catchall Bars

This is the second cookie from the list six that can be made from the Basic Cookie Dough recipe I posted last month.  Since it was made in a bar form, baked in layers and cut after baking--it was easier and faster than the last recipe.  Also I think everyone that tried both cookies liked this one better.  It was tasty, but I couldn't decide which I liked best. You be the judge!

Basic Cookie Dough recipe
1 1/2 cups dark chocolate pieces
1 1/2 cups toffee pieces
1 (14 oz.) can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup flaked coconut (I didn't use a whole cup of coconut, since we're not that crazy for the stuff.)
1 cup chopped pecans

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a 13x9x2 inch baking pan with foil extending the foil over the edges of the pan.  Grease foil; set pan aside.

2. Prepare Basic Cookie Dough as directed.  (See recipe here.)  Press three-fourths of the dough evenly onto the bottom of the prepared baking pan.  Bake crust in the preheated oven about 10 minutes or until lightly browned.

3. In a large bowl, combine chocolate pieces, toffee pieces, coconut, and pecans.  Add the sweetened condensed milk.  Spread mixture evenly over the baked crust.   Crumble the remaining one-fourth of the dough evenly over the top.

4. Bake about 20 minutes more or until crumbled topping is lightly browned.  Cool in pan on wire rack.  Using the edges of the foil, lift out of the pan.  Cut into bars.  Makes 24 bars (I cut into smaller pieces so I got more than 24 bars).

To store: Place bars in single layer in an airtight container; cover.  Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Low-calorie Chocolate Raspberry Pastry

We had all the kids over last Sunday to celebrate our oldest son's birthday.  So we barbequed and I threw together a bunch of finger foods to munch on.  One, was this Chocolate Raspberry Pastry.  It was so simple to make, very quick to put together and the best thing--it's low in calories!  A winning combination in my book.

I started with some mini fillo (phyllo) pastry shells that I found in the frozen section of my grocery store.  Then I used some Hershey Bliss candy.  Since I couldn't decide which would be better, I made two kinds, milk chocolate and the milk chocolate raspberry.  I cut them into quarters and put two pieces of candy into each pastry shells.  I baked them for 5 minutes at 350 degrees.  When they came out of the oven I popped a raspberry on top.  Voila! Your done and total calories per treat = 34  Trust me, they were worth it!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Mod Podge Crayon Box

I have been MIA for a little while.  We have been spending time with visiting family from out-of-town and then the long holiday weekend took up more time, so I haven't been able to play with my crafts and blog too much.  But the holiday weekend is over, I'm pretty sad about that, and everyone has moved on to their next destination so now I'm back.  Posted below is my latest project.  :)

I made these little boxes for my granddaughters.  Although I made one for each of the girls to use however they wished, these could be used for anything--i.e.: hair barrettes, small toys, stationary, mail or, as I labeled my last box--crayons.  You name it...these boxes could probably hold it.

I found the unfinished wooden boxes at my local craft store.  They came as a set of three nested inside each other.  I took one look at them and decided they would be perfect for a Mod Podge project.  I love playing with Mod Podge, paper and paint.  You can do so much with it.

The items I used:
Paper (of your choice)
Paint (to match)
Mod Podge
Cricut machine
Hot glue
Paint brush

1. Paint the inside bottom of the box and allow to dry. 
2. Paint the bottom outside of the box and allow to dry. 
3. Using my Cricut machine, I cut the paper to the size needed for the outside pieces.  That way I made sure I had correct sizes and straight lines.  My boxes had holes on each side for handles that I needed to also cut out. 
4. Mod Podge the paper onto the sides of the boxes.  Once dry, you can embellish them in any way you wish.

I cut names out with my Cricut in coordinating paper, and then I sponged those letters with the paint I used for the bottom of the each box.  Just to enhance the edges of the letters and make them pop off the paper a little.  The crayon box turned out the best.  I forgot to do the letters for the blue box and you can definitely see a difference there.

After gluing the words/names to the front of the box, I used some hot glue and tacked ribbon around the top edge to finish it off.  I also applied some cute little matching flowers. So what do you think?