Tuesday, July 31, 2012

How To Tuesday

This is a new feature for me. I thought it might be fun to share with
 you some of the  practical How To ideas that I have come across lately.

How to Avoid the Most Common Cooking Mistakes @

How to Pick the Best Watermelon and Cut It Properly @

How to Grill the Perfect Steak by Touch @

How to Paint Baseboards Next to Carpet @

How to Live without Electricity @

"Home is an invention
on which no one
has yet improved."
--Ann Douglas

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Top 10 Popular Pins

Pinterest does something pretty cool. At the end of the week, I receive an email
letting me know which ideas that I have pinned have been repinned the most times
by others. It is kind of  fun to see which ideas other people find interesting also.

Here are my top 10 Most Popular Pins...

Add bling to the festivities by gluing rhinestones
 to plastic cutlery @
Zakka Life

How to turn a box cake mix into something special @
Bronze Budget Bride

Turn a terra cotta pot into a
personal s'mores roaster @
Lancaster Online

Transfer pictures onto tile using nail polish remover
@ Du Buh Du Designs

Butterfly card @ Clean & Simple

Blow up balloons of various sizes and tape them to
the wall as a back drop to a beverage table
(especially if it's champagne!) @
Honey & Fritz

Fall decorating--Coffee beans and mason jar
with battery-operated tea light @
My Heart's Desire

Brown paper flowers @ Bliss

Balloon Fun @ Babble

Crusty bread @ Simply So Good
(getting rave reviews!)

Find anything here that peaks your interest?
I'd love to know!

Check out my
For Sale Page
for Many New Items
Added 7/28

Stamp sets
Fall stamps

Friday, July 27, 2012

Happiness Always

We're back from a wonderful visit with our family in central Illinois.
There really is nothing like spending quality time with relatives that
 you do not have the luxury of seeing very often. It was especially great
reconnecting with nieces and nephews, getting to know their children
better, as well as seeing many friends.

Now it's time to settle back into a routine and try to remember where
I left off getting ready for a November craft boutique when I left! It
doesn't seem that far off! I will be giving you a sneak peak of some
of my items in the weeks ahead.

In the meantime, here is a little card I made using a striped note card
from A-Muse...one from a set of eight.

   Since it was striped on the front and back,  I wanted to
use the cards as efficiently as possible. After all, who ever
really notices the stripes on the back?

So I cut the card in half and mounted one of the pieces on another card,
then mounted that on a black square base.
Now, I will have 16 striped cards instead of 8.     

With a little ribbon and a few punches,
and a Stampin' Up sentiment that can
be used for various occasions,
I have a card good to go in the mail.

Freebie Friday

In celebration of the London Olympics,
beginning TODAY....

Pink Petticoat

The Best of British Party Pack

Union Jack flag, cupcake toppers, bunting,
paper chains, gift pouch

Thirty Handmade Days

Opening Day Bingo Sheet

London Olympics Memories Sheet

Have a great week-end
and enjoy the Olympics!

something to watch on TV!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Do You Use Embossing Powder?

It just seemed a natural to put these Basic Grey papers
on a kraft card base.
The pink was supposed to cover the whole top part, but I
cut it short, so I had to put Plan B in action and come
up with a different layout.
Actually, I think it turned out more interesting than it would
have originally been.

I purchased this Magenta plant stamp eons ago when I
first began stamping, and I am sorry to say that I
have never used before.
I stamped it in Versamark and embossed it with
Metallic Medley embossing powder.
When I was a newbie, I thought I had to have
every color embossing powder under the sun,
not realizing at the time that the basic black, clear, silver,
gold, and copper was ALL I would ever need.

Tip:  I made a reference chart by embossing a circle with each of
the embossing powders. Then, when I am making a card and
am not sure what color to use, I refer to this chart to see 
what looks best. I keep this chart pinned to my
bulletin board so it is always close at hand. 

The punch and sentiment are both Stampin' Up
and the rest speaks for itself. 

I don't use embossing powder very often, but I
really don't know why.
It can really add that extra touch to an
ordinary card, and it is so easy to do.

How about you?
Do you emboss?

Taking a Trip
We are going back to Illinois tomorrow to
host a family reunion so I will be taking
a break from the computer--both email and blogging.

I have not been back to the town where we lived for the
first 16 years of our married life in five years, so it
will be good to reconnect with family and friends.

Our daughter is taking her husband there for the
first time so that will be fun.  

I hope that you won't forget about me and will
join me for more crafts, recipes, tips, and talk
when I return.
I appreciate every one of you.

Stay safe and happy.

Friday, July 13, 2012

A Good Mail Day

It is considered a "good mail day" when I receive a handmade card
from one of my friends--like yesterday.

The three coordinated papers
The layout
The kraft card base
Circles showcasing that cute hi 

Love the thought..

Freebie Friday

Printable nature postcards @

Printable sentiment @ Create with TLC
These freebies expire so print or save to your
computer now!

Frame it @ Create with TLC

The Plum Crumb that I made last week-end
turned out really great, but I forgot to take a picture
of it.
Being that plums are in season NOW, I am showing
you the picture from Taste of Home, which is
where the recipe is from, and linking you to
that site in case you are interested in making
it any time soon.

Plum Crumb Dessert @ Taste of Home

Changes I made--
I added an extra egg to the topping ingredients so it was dough-like
rather than dry, then omitted the stick of butter.
Instead, I just put some pats of butter on top of the
dough at the end of the baking time and let it melt in. 
It would be best served slightly warm.

I made homemade vanilla ice cream with my Cuisinart
and it received rave reviews by all!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Jalapeno Cheese Boats

I seriously need your help!

I made this appetizer to take to a party recently and just
have to share it with you because it was so dang tasty!

However, there is only one problem...
the fumes from the jalapenos when I was cutting them in
halves to remove the seeds and membranes about killed me!
I was coughing and choking uncontrollably--the scarf I had
over my nose didn't help one bit.
Do you realize that is the same stuff they put in pepper spray? 
Capsaicin is the culprit.

I guess when you cut up one or two for a recipe it isn't so bad, 
but I was doing 12 of those puppies. 
If anyone has a solution, please share! 
One person told me to keep the sprayer going on the faucet and 
that will dissipate the fumes.
Any other ideas?
I goggled it and found lots of remedied for hand burns,
but the only solution for the fumes was offered by The Pioneer Woman.
You've all heard of the infamous Ree, haven't you?
She even has her own cooking program now.
Anyway, she said the only remedy was to flee the premises
and get fresh air! 

I guess I was pretty lucky my hands were fine,
considering I was more worried about the fumes
and didn't wear latex gloves (as if I had any.) 
Reading the horror stories,
I would recommend you wear gloves!
But if you do get burned, anecdotes include
rubbing alcohol, Vaseline, milk, sour cream, yogurt, and lemon juice.
And by all means, avoid touching ANY sensitive body part!

Anyway, here's the yummy recipe:

12 jalapeno peppers
1-8 oz. cream cheese
6-8 slices bacon
6 oz. Colby cheese--shredded (can use Monterey Jack, 
Cheddar, or combination)

Half the jalapenos, remove the seeds and membranes. 
Turn them upside down on a paper towel to drain while 
you mix up the filling. Fry bacon until crispy, press to
remove grease and crumble. Combine cheeses and add 
bacon. Fill jalapenos. Bake at 425 for 20-25 minutes. 
Serve warm or room temperature.

Note: A variation is to keep the jalepeno whole and stuff
with the cheeses, then wrap the raw bacon around the
pepper. I thought this was rather cumbersome for an
appetizer, and the bacon never seems crispy enough.

Enjoy watching your friends gobble them up!

You will be surprised how mellow the jalapenos are
once they are baked. Those little rascals! We have a
love/hate relationship now.

Linking to:
Link and Greet #25 @ Country Momma Cooks

Saturday, July 7, 2012

A "Go To" Card Layout

Just got out of the kitchen from making a new Plum Crumb dessert and
homemade vanilla ice cream to take to a party tonight.Hope it turns out
well--I'll let you know! I'm not worried about the ice cream even though
I haven't made it for a few years. I tasted it and it was yummo.

Yes, I really do still make cards, even though I have been doing a lot of
other crafts lately. But that is because I am busy preparing for a craft boutique
that I am going to be a part of at my church in November. It doesn't seem that
far off, and I am already stressing, hoping that I am going to have enough items
to fill up my booth. Good thing I have a talented partner who makes lovely tote

Here are two simple cards I made recently out of Basic Grey paper--a retired
designer pack. It is one of my "go to" layouts.

I used brown ink to stamp the Stampin' Up sentiment
in both cases.

And there you have it, my friends.
Thank you for stopping by. 
Come back soon
 and let me know that you were here.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Wrapped Denim Bracelet--A Tutorial

My latest project is a wrapped denim bracelet to be paired with your casual
wear. It is completely adjustable, and depending on the length, you can make
it wrap as many times as you want. My inspiration was from one of my very
first pins that I found HERE.

 Here's my bracelet and how I made it...

1. Cut out the double-stitched seam from a pair of old jeans.
2. Decide on the length you are going to work with by wrapping
it around your wrist. This one is 16" so I was able to get
two bracelets out of one inside leg seam. 
3. If you do not want any fraying, you can apply Fray Check,
(found in any fabric department.) I didn't mind a little fraying. 
4. I used a 20 gauge copper jewelry wire, doubled, and ran
it through the inside of the seam. This takes a little coaxing,
but it does work.
5. Once I had about five inches sticking out from both 
ends, I cut the wire off of the spool. I would rather have too 
much than too little. You may have to adjust.
6. I put my bead on one of the wires and make a decorative coil.
Make sure you have thought ahead and chosen beads  that will
fit through the wire.
7. With the other wire, bring it right under the bead and wrap it 
around the other wire 3 or 4 times. Snip off the end.
8. Repeat steps 6 and 7 on the other end.
9. Take your bracelet  and wrap it around a narrow jar to
obtain the circular shape.
10. Put it on your wrist and admire your finished bracelet!

I linked up to:
Say It Saturday-- Family Home and Life
Handmade Tuesdays-- My Favorite Finds
The Sunday Showcase Party--Under the Table and Dreaming
Pin the Tail on the Bloggy--Debbiedoo's.com
Saturday Seven Party--Positively Splendid
Tutorial Tuesday--Hope Studios

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Celebrate the Red, White, and Blue

Spend a few moments and think about what it really means to be free.

Some people really know how to show their patriotism.... 

I'll be lucky if I can find something red, white, and blue
in my closet!
How about you?

Have a lovely day with family and friends.

Happy Birthday to my sister and niece!
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