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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Experience the Season

I promise this is the last post for the advent calendar!  You saw the calendar, you saw the patterns, and now you will see the cards for the experiences.  I posted what my experiences were, with a christmas song twist and here is the list again.
Holly Jolly Christmas!
Hang the stockings with care
It’s a sugar date to make cookies
Away in a manger…the real  story
Bring good cheer to someone
Yummy holiday treats for Oreo
Mix and mingle to a Jinglin’ beat
Painted candy canes on the tree, a new one each year
Jingle Bell Rock all night at a concert
Visit a Winter Wonderland
Here we come a ’caroling
Baby its cold outside, so let’s go out for a treat!
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer…and popcorn!
Bearing gifts to travelers a ’far…or down the street
Have a cup of cheer…or hot chocolate
Comfy cozy are we at breakfast
Say hello to friends you know down the street
Make a new Christmas decoration
Wrap presents ‘round the tree
Rush home with our treasure
Let it snow with Harry Potter and popcorn
Don’t be a mean one Mr. Grinch.
Do you hear what I hear?  New Christmas music.
Make a House so Sweet
Deck the Halls!
After I made my list, and it took a while to come up with all the cute sayings, I wanted to print them on cardstock and put them in the ornament pockets.  I thought I would find a premade template from avery.com since they have premade labels and such but I couldnt find anything cute so I set out to make my own.  In Microsoft Word (I am a PC, haha) I made a table that was 2inches x 4inches (which I now realize was a little too long so it should have been 2x3, but you can learn from my trial by error) and started plugging in my phrases.  After I had that all done, I went on google to try and find an awesome border, and I found a great holly one, which I share here now for you :)
I am still getting used to Windows 7 so it took a while to get the placement right on this clip art and to make it stay behind the text, but once I got the clip art set as the background for each block of the table I was ready to print.  I printed these on cardstock and then laminated them just to be sure nothing would happen to them and I would have them for years to come.  And here is what they look like now.

Not my finest photography moment, but you get the idea.  So now they are all in the slots of the christmas tree and ready for the first day of December!  I do want to add that when you put your activities make sure you pay attention to the date.  You dont want to put a weekend activity in a weekday slot, for example we have the visit a winter wonderland card, well thats not really something we want to do after we get off work because where we go is an hour and a half away, so that has to go in a saturday or sunday slot.  You get the picture, so happy creating!

Project Housewife Out!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Color Me Happy!

As we all know I am addicted to pinterest, so when I saw this I knew I was in trouble.  I never know what I get my grandmothers for Christmas and thought, why not make them some art.  So I waited for canvases to go on sale at Michaels and set about making my art.  A side note for this project, you are more than welcome to use Crayola brand for your crayons, but a 64 pack was about $7, but a 64 pack no-name was $1...thats right $1 so you can tell which one I chose.  What you will need is:
  1. Hair dryer
  2. Canvas size of your choice
  3. Hot glue gun and extra glue sticks
  4. Crayons- I used 2 boxes per 12x12 canvas (to get the colors I needed, I have the equilivant of 1 box left over, but its full of colors I didnt use)
  5. Decorations, if you so choose
  6. newspaper for easy clean up
Let me start by showing you the finished products to get you motivated to do your own.

Yay!  Lets get started!  I decided to do one like grass with flowers and the other like the sky with butterflies flying around.  I also thought this would be the best way to make the most of all the crayons so I ended up with all red/pinks in the extra box..what to do with those :)  To start off with, pick out all the colors you think you are going to want to use and line them up on the canvas.  I dont remember how many crayons I used but it was each color family from 2 boxes (so all the greens/yellows/brown from 2 boxes).  Once you have them all lined up how you like, start gluing them.

I dont know if you can tell from this picture, but when I glued mine down I made sure all the labels were facing the same way.  Since I didnt love the logo on the crayon I had the address line facing out as it had the least amount of text showing.  I tried to rip off the label but they wouldnt budge, you can try it buy it didnt work for me.  Once you have all the crayons glued down, set out your newspaper to start blow drying.  Warning...there is a fair amount of splatter to the back of the canvas and to the side so make sure you put enough newspaper to cover that.  I had a wine bottle that was pretty tall that I perched my canvases on to make the dripping easier for me, but Im sure you could just lean it up against something and that would be fine too.  Here is what it looks like after about 1 minute.

Since this was such a small canvas the whole thing only took about 15minutes per canvas, so not too bad and the color was pretty thick, needless to say I was happy with the results.  I did have some of the crayons get bunched down the middle and if that happens to you just run the blow drier over the parts that are too thick and they will melt down.  Also, I pointed the dryer down and towards the middle of the crayons that seemed to work best for me.  Remember that not all crayons melt at the same pace so be aware of that, I had one that wouldnt melt even after having the dryer on it for 5 minutes, so watch out for that.

Now that the color is all melted let it dry (about 5minutes, this stuff dries fast) and if you have designs, you can add them with the hot glue now.

Those are my finished projects, I love them and am a little sad to see them go, but that just means its time to make my own for my house!!  If you made some awesome crayon art, share I would love to see what inspiration you got!

Project Housewife Out!

Monday, November 28, 2011

An Organized Mess

A while back my friend Lauren and I decided it would be such a good idea to organize and share our recipes with each other.  Lauren found this cute idea on a blog and I cant remember where she found it from, but the pages were so cute, each section given a scrapbook paper to define them.  We thought that was cute and wanted to do one for ourselves.  Boy did we have a MAJOR project in store for us!  Let me tell you, the putting the binder together was sooo easy compared to typing up each recipe!  I have to say I think someone may have hit me on the head when I agreed that we should do this.  It has taken me...so far...2 weeks to type up the recipes I had in 1 binder...thats right ONE!  I didnt even type them all I copied and pasted them from the originating websites (thank you Betty Crocker/Better Homes and Gardens for making my life easier).  I do admit they look amazing all uniform and pretty with no food on them from previous cookings, but it really is a lot of work.  If you are going to take this project on be warned that it will take a looooong time to get all the recipes together.  What I would suggest is get the binder done first, then you can add the recipes as you go.  From the beginning of the blog I said that the idea came from a lady who did scrapbook paper on each page, yeah well we thought she was crazy because A) thats even more work and B)if you run out of paper and want to add more recipes you are screwed because then it wont be uniform, so we came up with our own twist to the idea.  Below you can see the binder I used (super cute from target!) and the index we made.

So for the index, we picked scrapbook paper that we liked and used Lauren's awesome scrapbooking supplies to make the circles, she had one of those big circle hold punchers so they are all the same size and awesome.  We found that centering the text and using an arrow to point to the corresponding circle worked best for us, but you may have a better idea so of course feel free to make it your own (we did!).  To make the tabs we realized that using sheet protectors hid the dividers and that stunk so what we did was take the 12x12 scrapbook paper and cut it down to 9 1/2 x 11 that way it stuck out enough that we can see it but not too far that it sticks out of the binder (trust me we cut that paper and measured so many times it was getting insane).  So once we had all the paper cut, we realized that it didnt do any good if it could just get wet/ripped/torn so Lauren with her amazing scrapbook supplies had 12x12 laminating sheets.  So we lamanated each sheet, 3-hold punched it and now had awesome dividers.  You can see some of the colors here, but the 2nd picture is a full shot of the divider.


Aside from the horror of typing up all the recipes, this project took all of 2 hours (with all the cutting and laminating and just plain being tired because of the rain) and looks awesome!  Now that this is all done I cant wait to get all my other recipes added to the binder.  If you make one share!  I would love to see what you came up with.

Project Housewife Out!

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Friday, November 25, 2011

Foodies Friday

Yesterday as you know was Thanksgiving.  I decided I was going to make everything myself and 90% of that was from scratch.  I didnt make my pie crust, gravy or stuffing but I did make homemade cresent rolls, pie, cheesecake, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes and of course the fried turkey.  Today I am going to share with you the cheesecake recipe.  My picture doesnt make it look appetizing, but the Betty Crocker picture does.  So here is my picture of the cheesecake.
And before I show you the Betty Crocker picture, let me give you the recipe first (put some space between my picure and theirs lol)

Ingredients

Crust
2cups gingersnap cookie crumbs (about 32)
1/4cup butter or margarine, melted
Cheesecake
4packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened
1 1/2cups sugar
4eggs
1cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
1 1/2teaspoons ground ginger
1teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4teaspoon ground nutmeg 
 
Directions
  • 1 Heat oven to 300°F. Grease 9-inch springform pan with shortening or cooking spray. Wrap foil around pan to catch drips. In small bowl, mix cookie crumbs and butter. Press crumb mixture in bottom and 1 inch up side of pan. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until set. Cool 5 minutes.
  • 2 Iin large bowl, beat cream cheese with electric mixer on medium speed just until smooth and creamy; do not overbeat. On low speed, gradually beat in sugar. On low speed, beat in eggs, one at a time, just until blended. Spoon 3 cups of the cream cheese mixture into pan; spread evenly.
  • 3 Stir pumpkin, ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg into remaining cream cheese mixture; mix with wire whisk until smooth. Spoon over mixture in pan.
  • 4 Bake 1 hour 25 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes or until edges are set but center of cheesecake still jiggles slightly when moved.
  • 5 Turn oven off; open oven door at least 4 inches. Leave cheesecake in oven 30 minutes longer. Remove from oven; place on cooling rack. Without releasing side of pan, run knife around edge of pan to loosen cheesecake. Cool in pan on cooling rack 30 minutes. Cover loosely; refrigerate at least 6 hours but no longer than 24 hours.
  • 6 Run knife around edge of pan to loosen cheesecake again; carefully remove side of pan. Place cheesecake on serving plate. Store cheesecake covered in refrigerator.
Keep in mind that this does have to sit overnight, so that was good for me because I made it the day before and that was one less thing I had to cook Thanksgiving day.  I hope yours turns out great.  I blew out my hand mixer doing mine.  As an important note the cream cheese MUST be at room temperature before you try and mix it otherwise it will get lumpy and burn out your mixer (like I did mine) so dont learn the hard way head my warning!  haha, just kidding break your mixer if you want, mine was only $5 bucks and needed to be upgraded anyway.  So as promised here is the beautiful betty crocker shot of the cheesecake, and if yours turns out like this you must post a picture so I can be jealous of your pastry skills!

Project Housewife Out!

Thankful Thursday

I know this post is a day late but seeings as I was cooking up a storm yesterday I didnt have time.  So today is a 2 post day.  Starting with my thankfulness.  Today I am thankful for my amazing family, through thick and thin I can always count on them no matter what and I dont think everyone can say that about their families so I count myself lucky that I can say that.  I also am thankful that they let me experiment on them with new foods.  Yesterday I attempted my first cheesecake and pecan pie.  I think they turned out ok, but they said it was awesome.  I think my assessment was a little more accurate but I like the compliments so Ill say it was awesome.  I am going to post the recipe for the cheesecake, you can make it and be the judge of weather its good or not!  Here is a picture of the pecan pie to make you hungry.
Project Housewife Out!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Underneath the Miseltoe

You remember a while back I made some super easy Christmas Ornaments?  Well I had some left over christmas picks and decided to make my own "miseltoe".  I know it looks nothing like the real thing, but I thought it would be a nice decoration to add to all my others since I dont really have anything that serves as miseltoe in the house.
Super easy, just get your picks (I used 3) tape them all together and tie a bow around it!  So fast and easy and this ones is so fun I can put it just about anywhere!  Have fun making your super easy "miseltoe" and if you have some amazing pictures of one you have made share!!

Project Houdewife Out!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Run and Frost

A little while back I decided I needed to re-vamp certain aspects of my living room, and the easiest part was the TV console.  I had pictures and a candle votive on it, but it just looked cluttered.  I went searching and found this cool idea of candles in really big hurrican vases.  I knew the table would look to empty with just the vases so I decided to make another table runner.  You remember the other post Run Away With Me and I made a runner with pointed ends, well I decided I wanted something more simple so I just did square ends this time.  I also didnt want to do tassles because that just really didnt mesh with the living room but I did find some great brown ribbon and thought it would look great as a timm for the whole runner.  Once I had that I was on the hunt for a large hurricane vase, candles and coffee beans for the filler.  BE WARNED...those hurricane vases are soooo hard to find!  I went to Pier 1 (and by the way they have the PERFECT vase, but they arent for sale, go figure), The Container Store, another Pier 1 and finally Marhsalls as a last resort.  Surprise upon surprise Marshalls was where I found the vases.  Now an important note on that is this was a Marshalls Home Goods store so they had a really great glass selections which I dont think all Marshall stores have.  I also got my candles there for a great price and was on to whole coffee bean.  Who knew coffee beans were so expensive!  I dont drink coffee so I have no concept of how much it costs but 2 small bags for $9 seems expensive for a vase filler, but maybe Im just being silly.  Once I had all my items it was assembly time!  Check out the below and leave comments if you think I could do something to spice it up even more!!  Oh and the "Dream" metal art came from Garden Ridge for $5, what a great find!
You can see the detail of the ribbon and fabric better here.

I saw somewhere that it is relitively easy to etch glass so I thought that would be a great little addition to the vases you see above.  ANOTHER BE WARNED!  Glass etching yes is easy, but if you dont SLATHER the solution onto your pattern it wont turn out at all.  I had to do one vase 3 times, and consequently have one side of the vase that is a mess up but you cant really see it because its glass etching and it doesnt show up very well.  Which is also the other be warned, you cant really see the finished product with how I have my vases filled.  Im sure if/when I add more coffee beans you will be able to see the R and J but right now it was a lot of work for not a lot of payoff.  Also we used the armour etch, the bottle says to leave on for 5 minutes but we had to leave it on for 15minutes.  Longer is sometimes better!  Below is a close up of one of the letters, it looks awesome but Im not sure it was worth it.  To get the "R" I had contact paper left over from lining the dresser drawers from my Dresser project that we used to cut the design out on.  What ended up working best was applying the contact paper to the vase first, printing the pattern from the computer, taping it to the contact paper, then we used at exacto knife to cut the design out directly on the glass.  I also think this may have helped with the etching process, but I have no way to be sure.

If you have some great living room ideas post there here so we can see your amazing creations!

Project Housewife Out!


Monday, November 21, 2011

Patterns

As promised, here are the patterns for the calendar I made.  I couldnt figure out how to make the word documents load so I did the best with what I had :)  The star and the ornament fit on one 8.5x11 piece of paper, so copy and paste and enlarge.  The tree should take up 1/2 of one side of another 8.5x11 with the tree trunk on the other side.  Also remember, that for the tree pattern you want to cut out this pattern 6 times to get the biggest tree.  For the numbers, I used the Berlin Sans FB Demi font size 200, that seemed to work the best for us, but find your favorite font to make it more personal. 

 
Below are the 25 activities that my husband and I decided on with a christmas-y twist as you can see :)
Deck the halls!
Make a house so sweet
Do you hear what I hear? New Christmas music
 Don’t be a mean one, Mr. Grinch
Let it snow with Harry Potter
Rush home with our treasure
Wrap presents ‘round the tree
Make a new Christmas Decoration
Say hello to friends you know at the neighborhood Christmas party
Comfy cozy are we at breakfast
Have a cup of cheer or hot chocolate
Bearing gifts to travelers afar…or the neighbors
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, and popcorn!
Baby its cold outside, so lets go out for a treat
Here we come a caroling
Visit a Winter Wonderland
Jingle Bell Rock all night at a concert
Painted candy canes on the tree, a new one each year
Mix and mingle in to a Jingling Beat
Holiday treats for Oreo
Bring good cheer to someone
Away in a Manger…the real story
It’s a sugar date with cookies
Hang the Stockings with care
Holly Jolly Christmas!

I hope you have as much fun making yours as I did mine!
Project Housewife Out!

Advent Calendars Abound

Yesterday was a day of learning for me.  I learned that I buy WAY to much fabric for projects.  I learned why people sew felt rather than iron it.  And I learned that Twilight is the perfect movie to cut mass amounts of fabric too (you really dont have to pay attention to it).  So let me start at the beginning and show you the inspiration for this craft project.  I saw this on pinterest and loved it, but when I saw how much work/sewing was involved I knew immediately I was going to have to modify this a bit.
http://shannonmakesstuff.blogspot.com/2009/11/felt-advent-calendar.html .  Here is a picture of here end project.
Pretty right!  So I had the basic concept, now to get the supplies.  I knew right away that I was never going to sew all those ornaments and all that so I bought some very thin hem tape (which I late realized I could just use hot glue, talk about a ah-ha moment).  I also bought 1 yard of dark green felt, 1 1/2 yards dark red felt and 25 felt squares.  Did you guys know about felt squares?!  They are in the kids craft sections and are typically 4 for $1...money saving tip right there because I was going to get 1/2 yard of each color I wanted and that was going to be way more expensive.  I also bought a dowl rod to make the project sturdy and I had ribbon at home so I didnt need to get any of that. 

Now that I had my supplies I was ready to get started.  I got the patterns for the tree and ornaments from the about blog post, which I have saved in a better format for you, but arent on this computer so I will load those up later today.  Here is kind of what they look like though to give you an example.


 I decided to start cutting the ornaments since this was probably going take the longest time (I forgot I had to cut the numbers).

Those are all the colors I have for the ornaments, minus the brown that is for the trunk of the tree.  There are 3 glitter felt pages in there too because I love glitter and it helped break up the plain red/green/white ornaments.  Honestly it only took me an hour of slow cutting to get them all done, and I was cutting one by one because honestly I dont trust my multi-page cutting skills but for those of you more talented you can totally cut faster than 1 hour.  This is also when I realized I had bought WAY too much felt.  Each square will cut 4 ornaments easily with a little extra.  Since I only needed 25 ornaments I only actually used 7 felt squares for the ornaments.  I needed 1 additional square for the trunk and will need 1 more for the star but thats only 9 squares out of the 25 I bought, so FYI, you dont need nearly as much as I originally thought.

You can kind of see the glitter ones better here, there is a white glitter one but those never really came across in the pictures.  You can also see the trunk cut-out here as well.  Now that the ornaments were cut, I was ready to cut the tree.

This is my tree and backing felt.  This is also where I realized where the iron and felt dont really mix.  Just so you all know, felt smells really bad when you iron it and the hem tape takes longer to adhere to the felt.  You have to be really patient and also make sure you dont have any hem tape showing (sometimes I dont make it perfect and have some sticking out which will melt off) because with felt it doesnt melt off so be careful there.  You could use hot glue rather than hem tape, I didnt because I didnt think about it, and it also doesnt seem as strong.  Sewing is also an option but I dont own a sewing machine so that was totally out.  Anyway, moving on to cutting the tree.  I had a pattern that I dplicated 4 times, but really I should have done 5 it would have been better, but I made it work anyway.

This is what the tree looked like after I had used the hem tape to secure it to the backing (I cut the hem tape to fit each vertical part of the tree as well as the base and the triangle of the top, for the base I just cut 4 strips to fit the box and ironed it all down).  The hard part of cutting this tree was I wanted to make sure it was fat enough so I didnt use the middle fold to cut (which as we know makes cutting things easier) so I did each side individually.  I realized now that if i had the extra pattern (making the total points 6) and I make it so the bottom of the tree was further out than the top of the tree I could have folded the fabric in 1/2 and cut that way, but we live and learn so you know to do that when you make your creation.  On the excess fabric from the tree...I bought 1 yard because I wanted to make sure I had enough but remember that the felt is folded so if you are confident in your cutting abilities you could get away with 1/2 yard and use the fold tecnique to use less fabric and save money, and the same goes for the backing.  I bought 1 1/2yards but only used the front part so if you get 3/4 of a yard you will have plenty once you open the fold.  I did end up cutting off about 1/2inch from one side to make sure the dowl rod had room to stick out, and I left 2 inches at the top to make the fold for the dowl rod to fit it as shown below.  You can kind of see the fold and that is where you slip in the dowl rod to hang your beautiful calendar.
Now that you have your hem for the dowl rod, the tree hemmed to the backing and the trunk hemmed to the backing you are ready to place the ornaments.  This would also be a good time to cut the numbers.  My husband offered his help with this and I was so happy, I SUCK at cutting intricate things (yes I consider numbers intricate) so it took him about an hour to cut all those numbers and he did double up on cutting numbers at the same time.  The hardest part for him I think was getting all the holes out of the numbers (like the middle of the eight) that took some patience.  Once you have all your ornaments in place, add the numbers and you can get a glimpse of what your finished project will look like.

You can also see the star is here, I have that template in my sheets also which will come later.  Once I got all this in place I realized how much hem tape I was going to have to use and got very discourage...and thats when the lightning bolt came...HOT GLUE!!!!  I started by gluing each number to each ornament (so that when I glued the ornament the numbers wouldnt fall off silly people!) then glued the star to the top of the tree.  Another thank you goes out to my husband for reminding me that I shoudlnt glue the whole ornament down because then I would have no pocket for my amazing advent surprise.  Ok so get to gluing the ornaments, I flipped them over and started gluing the bottom half at the edges only, so an outline of glue around the bottom 1/2 of the ornament.  This whole process only took about 30minutes, gotta love hot glue.  Now that everything was attached to the tree and my pockets primmed and ready I could get to the almost final touch, the ribbon to hang the calendar from.  I didnt have enough room to tie a knot and I was afraid the knot would come undone so I hot glued the ribbon to the dowl rod on each side so it cant come off.  And viola!  A almost completed advent calendar!

I say almost because the most important part of this project is still under constructions.  I decided a while back (mainly becasue I found it on pinterest) that rather than doing candy or just numbers to put experiences in each date.  So for example on one day we will drink hot chocolate and watch harry potter, another day we will make a gingerbread house.  That is what the pockets are for, to put the experience cards in.  Right now all that is left of those cards is to print them off with a cool border and out them in the calendar.  Tomorrow I will post those, Im so excited to share them with you, and hopefully you can add some to your family traditions! 

Here is a recap of what you need for the advent calendar:

3/4yard backing felt
1 yard felt for tree (1/2 yard if you are a good cutter)
7 felt squares in the colors of your choice
1 brown felt square (for the trunk)
1 yellow felt square (for the angel)
1 dowl rod (width of your choice)
1 spool ribbon
1/4 yard black felt
hot glue gun/hem tape/sewing machich (pick your posion)
fabric scissors
patterns
tape (I used this to hold the pattern to the fabric while I cut so I wouldnt make a mistake)

Total time, 3 hours if you are a slow cutter, 1.5-2 if you are fast.  Good luck and if you have an awesome advent calendar please share, I would love to see what you came up with!

Project Housewife Out!
 


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Foodie Friday

Since I love titles that have the same first letter of each word I have decided that every Friday is now deemed as FOOD FRIDAY! 

I love food, I love to eat, but I dont always love to cook.  I am always on the search for recipes that are quick, easy, and not too many ingredients.  Which brings me to the Friday recipe.  I have made this now so many times I cant even remember.  Anytime I go to a party they always request this by name so that has to mean its good right!  Its called Cheesy Spinach and Artichoke Dip and I found it in a magazine and this was actually an ad for Kraft so I took a leap of faith that it would be good. 

Cheesy Spinach and Artichoke Dip recipe
  • 1 can (14oz) artichoke hearts, drained and finely chopped
  • 1 pkg (10oz) frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
  • 3/4cup grated parmesean cheese
  • 3/4cup light mayonaise (I used miracle whip and helmann's and to me the helmanns tasted better but people like either variation)
  • 1/2 reduced fat shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder (I use more like 1 tablespoon but I love garlic so find what works best for you)
  1. Heat the oven to 350F.
  2. Mix all ingredients in a 9-inch quiche dish or pie plate
  3. Bake 20 minutes or until heated through.
  4. Serve with crackers or cut up vegetables. (I like to serve this with tollhouse flatbread crispis crackers that are either sea salt and vinegar or italian blend they are perfect)

There you have it, a delicious appetizer in 30 minutes or less with 4 steps and less than 10 ingredients!  Have fun serving this at your next gathering, and let me know how it turns out for you and if you did anything fancy or fun to spice this recipe up!

Project Housewife Out!

Thankful Thursday

In honor of the week before Thanksgiving I though I would make today about being thankful.
http://www.younghouselove.com/2011/11/thanksgiving-traditions-one-old-one-new/ I saw this on one of the blogs I follow and thought it was such a cute idea.  Its too late in the month to start this, but I think it will be a nice family thing for next year.  I have experience with etching cream in the past, be warned that the bottle says 5 minutes...it really means 15 if you want that really crisp frosted look.  Also, when the bottle says a thick layer...it means a THICK layer.  I used 1/2 of a small bottle on one large letter for my candle centerpieces (more to come on that later).  That doesnt really leave you much room for error so if you have a bigger project I would get the bigger bottle.

Moving on to the thankful piece :)

This year has been a great year for the Saldana house.  We ran a full 1/2 marathon and did a relay 1/2 marathon as well.  We have been able to do all kinds of projects on the house, spend time with each other and the biggest success (in my opinion) was that we payed off Joe's car, so NO MORE CAR PAYMENTS for either of us!  I know at times we get stuck on the negative, because honestly its easy to get stuck there.  November is a month of being thanksful, but really every day we should be thankful that we are even here another day.  This mindset has been especially hard for me since there have been some not so good changes going on professionally and that makes it hard to stay thankful, but I have to remind myself that I do have a job and not everyone is as fortunate.  Some of the little things in life we take for granted, like having a/c in the summer (hello Im from Texas, I would literally die if we didnt have that) or heat in the winter.  I also have a loving husband, who supports me even though he somtimes wants to choke me for getting his help on things (all out of love lol).  We have a dog that loves to get love from us and a family that supports and loves us. 

So on this Thankful Thursday I think I want to start a new blog tradition (a since Im just starting out why not!) of putting at least one thing I am thankful for each week, and please leave a comment on what you are thankful for!  Or, if this week was a little harder and you need someone in your corner, let me know that too and I will say a prayer for you because I am a firm believer in the power of prayer.

I want to leave today with a picture of who I am most thankful for today.  So it was windy that day and my hair is going crazy, but I am thankful for my husband who puts up with all my crazy antics.  He may lose his patience with me, but not nearly as much as I lose mine.


Project Housewife Out!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Ribbon Ribbon Everywhere

Continuing with the "I made this in the past" theme.  I made this a few weeks ago because I got bit by the Christmas craft bug HARD and I needed to let my creativity flow.  I saw this in a holiday food magazine of all places.  It looked really cute and easy to make so I went for it!


What you'll need:
  • foam cone (choose your size)
  • at least 7 different types of ribbon (your choise of color combinations)
  • straight pins (a pack of 100 should be plenty)
So these are really easy, what you need is a green foam cone, the kind you get from Hobby Lobby or Michael.  Get whatever size you want but mine was on the smaller side.  Depending on the size of your cone will depend on how much ribbon you will need, but for the 2 trees I used 1 spool of each ribbon color.  A tip on this, wired ribbon doesnt work as well, you can use it of course (especially if you find an awesome pattern) it just wont lay the same as you can kinda see here I used wire ribbon on the bottom layer.  So I have 7 layers and to be honest i eye-ball most of my measurements, but these are roughly 5 inches for each strand for each layer.  For you though, each layer you want to get progressively shorter, which I didnt do because honestly I forgot.  It will also help to have all the ribbon to be the same width, the fatter the ribbon the wider the space between loops and the easier it is to see the cone underneath, so the medium size is the best.  Stay away from the super skinny ribbon it doesnt do well at all and you have to use twice as much.  If you are dying to use it then go ahead, but dont say I didnt warn you :)

Now that you have all your supplies you are ready to start pinning.   I cut each level one at a time just to make sure everything worked out right.  So start at the bottom and work your way up.  Take the ribbon piece and fold in half, pin each corner of the ribbon into the cone and work your way around the bottom layer.  Then start on the next layer, keep going until you reach the top.  To have a more finished look I ran a ribbon around the top to hide all the pins and sealed in place with a hot glue gun.  Be careful to not burn your fingers!!  To add a little extra fancy I made a loop out of a ribbon of choice and hot glued to the top of the cone (this will also hide the remaining cone that is visable).  You can always top it with something a little more cute like a star or an angel, but we use what we have right!

I hope you dont pin the crap out of your fingers like I did mine, but I think that may be inevitable.  If you have some cool looking ribbon trees please share them here I would love to see what you created!

Project Housewife Out!


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Gettin in the Holiday Spirit

I made these ornaments a while ago, but just now am getting around to posting about it.

These are sooo easy I cant stand it!  For years I have been making ornaments by marbling paint.  They look amazing but its so wasteful of paint and took so long to dry.  For the new ornaments all you need is a clear ornament, picks (those sticks of fun things in the holiday craft section), scrapbook paper, wallet size picture, tweezers.  Be careful when you decide on the picks you want, you have to make sure they will fit in the opening of your ornament.  Now comes the fun part...getting your pictures ready!  I forgot to do cool stuff to my pictures before I printed them, but you can always add the year or a phrase on the picture using a photo editing program.  I have picasa, but probably any program will work.  I printed 6 pictures on 5x7 photo paper and those sizes seemed to work well for me, but I dont know for sure how big they were, I just eye-balled it :) .  After you cut out the pictures tape them to your scrapbooking paper.  I did a red/white/green theme, but there are endless possibilities for you to do.  I didnt make the border around the picture too big because I was worried about it fitting in the ornament, but you can always play with it to find what works best for you.  I also used a glue stick at first but that didnt stick when I went to put them in the ornament so thats why I recommend using tape, that seemed to work well for me.  Before you put the picture in fill the ornament up with the pick you decided on.  It took almost a whole pick for each ornament, but that was very full so depending on how full you want the ornament will depend on how many picks you need.  Once you have your ornament full roll your picture up in a small tube and slide it into the ornaments.  Using the tweezers, unroll the picture and try and flatten it back out.  This was the hardest part of all this and does take some patience, but if you are using long thin tweezers you should be fine.  Once you get your picture in a good position, put the top back on your ornament and you are finished!!  I decided to not put a ribbon on my ornaments this year since the inside was already so colorful but you can always add ribbion if your heart desiers...mine usually does :)  Happy crafting, I hope yours turn out fantastic!

Project Housewife Out!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Oh Christmas Tree!

Today is shopping day for my weekend project.  This weekend I am going to be making my own advent calendar.  When I was a kid my mom (supremely crafty woman) made us an advent calendar with all these cute little ornaments that you stuck on a tree, one each day.  Well, unfortunately I cant sew a stitch so I had to be a little more simplistic when I decided to make mine.  Through Pinterest I found this great idea to have "christmas experiences" rather than christmas treats.  Since I dont have any kids I thought this would be a great mix up from the original advent calendar idea.  Although this post http://kimmccrary.blogspot.com/2010/12/activities-advent.html had mostly ideas to do with the kids it gave me a stepping stone to make my own ideas (which I am still working on).  Now I just had to find the perfect calendar idea.  After much searching and finding a few very LAME calendars (and when I say lame, I mean they were out of a cupcake tin).  I came acorss this awesomeness... http://shannonmakesstuff.blogspot.com/2009/11/felt-advent-calendar.html .  On first glance this looked like it would be perfect!  Ornaments on a tree how easy...boy was I wrong!  This was sewing at its finest, but I decided that the bare bones of this project was perfect for what I was looking for and went on making my adjustments.  Rather than sew I will be using my trusty hem tape.  Rather than handing each ornament on the tree, I am going to use said hem tape to "sew" the ornaments to the tree and make pockets for the "experiences" I come up with.  Other than those slight (*cough* major *cough*) changes everything else will be the same.  So today the shopping begins for my many shades of felt and some ribbon.  Stay tuned as I update on this hopefully easy project.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Omaha Conclusion

Today is the last day in Omaha, and I have to say Im happy to be going home!!  Everyone in Omaha is nice, and there is NO traffic compared to Houston, but if is 40 degrees in November, I would hate to see what the weather is like in January...there is a reason I live in Houston people!! 

Last night we had the pleasure of staying in the downtown district of Omaha, and while they only have 2 buildings tall enough to be called skyscrapers, it was a cute charming little downtown.  And I do mean little, is about 6 blocks total.  My co-worker has been to Omaha before and remembered a quaint little restaurant that she had a great time at and wanted to go to again.  This place is called Upstream http://upstreambrewing.com/ and I have to say it was pretty darn good.  There was a wide variety of food on the menu and they also had a very cool brewery that you could see from the restaurant.  Now Im not a beer drinker so I can attest to the quality of the beer, but there was fair amount of locals there so that has to tell you something.  I had the Mac and Cheese...now I know what your thinking, why get Mac and Cheese when I can have that anywhere.  Well Ill tell you, this Mac and Cheese was DELISH!  It was also the recomendation of the waitress and it lived up to the hype.  Creamy goodness with chives and ham...yum yum yum.  My co-worker had the filet mignon which looked delish but I cant say for sure because eating off someone else's plate is nasty.  I also finally gave in and had myself some dessert.  They had a lemon whoopie pie and while it was tasty, it did not have blue bell icecream so it will never be as awesome as it could be...Blue Bell makes everything better.  For those of you who have never had Blue Bell, you dont know what you are missing and need to fix that problem quick fast and in a hurry!! http://www.bluebell.com/
Go now!  Quick!!

Overall, business wise Omaha was a success and a trip well spent.  Now its time to get home and rush to Target to get the new Harry Potter...

I love Harry Potter and cait WAIT to see all the special features!!  I have a project in mind to show my love of Harry Potter, but I cant sew so Im not sure how well it will turn out, stayed tuned on that. 

Project Housewife Out!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

40 degrees and FREEZING!!

Hello from Omaha Nebraska!!  Stepping of the plane it was a chilly 40 degrees.  A HUGE change from the 80 degree weather I had just left in Houston.  On the way to the hotel the cab driver (from West Africa) said it was suppossed to snow last night...WHAT...snow...in November!  Dorothy I dont think I'm in Texas anymore.  Well I didnt believe this man (why should I he has only lived here for 8 years, lol) so I checked the forecast and sure enough there was a 70% chance of rain or snow.  So I set my room thermostat as high as it would go and prepared for a white morning.  Unfortunatley the 70% chance was fufilled with rain and not snow so I didnt get to wake up to snow, but there is always tomorrow.  I dont know how many of you have been to Nebraska but it is very windy...I felt a little like I was in Chicago as much as I was being blown around.  Thank goodness for short hair otherwise no brush would have saved my life.  Since I dont have much to post on today in way of a new project Im working on, Im going to share with you a project I did a few weeks ago.  Below is a picture of the finished product.


This idea I have to say came from pinterest but it was so cute I had to make my own.  This is a 11x14 picture frame with a piece of fabric as the backgroud and the wording is printed on a transparancy.  You could print on the fabric directly but unfortunatley I dont have a printer that is large enough to handle 11x14 paper.  I taped the fabric to the backing of the picture frame, put the transparancy in front of the fabric and put it all together.  The point of this is to take a dry erase marker and write something cute to your significant other each day or whenever you have a chance really.  So this whole thing took 10 minutes and is a great quick and easy way to add a cute twist to any space.  I put mine in my bathroom (the fabric was leftover from the curtain I made for my bathroom) and its the perfect fit.  If you would like to see how to print on fabric here is the link I would have used if my printer was larger http://moderndaymoms.com/make-it-yourself-monday-printing-on-fabric/ and honestly if you print directly on the fabric it will look better.  On a side note, you can also use scrapbooking paper for this, I just used fabric because I had some great fabric scraps that were perfect for this project.

Project Housewife Out!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Finally Finished!!

The dresser is finally finished and I have to say it looks great.  Joe did the painting on it, because I honestly dont have a steady hand and cant draw a straight line to save my life.  Here is a picture of the final product.

 The design came from a picture I saw online and was flipped for the right side of the dresser.  To make things easier on yourself if you ever try to do a design I would recommend getting a projector to get the design on the dresser if you want a perfect pattern on each side. 

I have to say it is so nice to finally have this dresser done...it only took 2 weeks!!

To see the whole process check out the paint post, and the take apart phase

This week I am going to Omaha Nebraska for work so I wont be working on any projects, but I do have a few updates saved for when I get back so stayed tuned!!

Project Housewife Out!

Im Linking Up!  Come check me out at The Rooster and the Hen

Friday, November 4, 2011

Run Away with Me!

Yesterday was craft night for myself and my friend Lauren.  We decided to tackle making table runners since neither one of us could find a runner that matched what we were looking for.  So thank you pinterest.com for having articles on how to make a table runner!  Im going to walk you through my 2 hour table runner night of fun!

First things first, you need to go out and get your supplies!  I bought 2 yards (too much is better than not enough!) of a fabric that I thought would best fit what i was going for.  I also bought 2 packages of fusable hem tape beacuse I cant sew to save my life, and 2 tassles for something fancy on the ends.  All the supplies can be found at Hobby Lobby or Joanns, although Joanns has by far the larger fabric selection.  Other supplies you will need is an iron, fabric scissors, and fabric pins.  All of the supplies I used are in the picture below.


To get started you need to measure out the length and width you want your runner to be, add 2 inches to each side to be sure you have enough to make the hem.  Cut the fabric to your dimensions.  I didnt double the fabric up to make it puffier since mine was just going on the dresser and I honestly didnt want a thick table runner, but you can leaver the fabric doubles if you want to.  Once you cut your fabric now we can make the triangle points on each end.  I just did a freehand triangle from the sheet of 8.5x11 plain white paper, but you can always do something more precise if you are a perfectionist (if one day I sell these then I will but since this was just for me and I didnt have all the right tools I made do with what I had).  To cut the triangle out, I taped the template to the back side of the fabric (always make the cuts on the backside, well at least thats what I do) and cute about 1 inch away from the actual template.  So there was a black edge all around the triangle so that I could make my hem.  Below is a picture of the "finished" step


You can see I already pinned, but here is how I pinned the triangle:  I left the triangle template in place and folded the fabric over the template.  Carefully slide the template out from under the fabric and pin the edges together all the way down the edge, do the same for both edges of the triangle.  Now repeat this step for the other end of the runner.  Now you are ready to do the length of the runner.  I do have to admit that my lines were not as straight as they could have been, but again I dont have a fancy table with lines like some major crafters do so I just made do with a table top, but if you have one of those big boards with all the lines on them, I would suggest using it as it will help you make great straight lines.  Remember from earlier you have 2 inches of extra fabric on each side of your runner, fold over 1 inch and pin in place all the way down the runner.  Repeat that step for the other side of the runner.  Now with everything pinner you are ready to iron.  This step is really important because once you remove the pins, if you didnt iron your fabric, it will just flip back over and you will have to do your work all over again.  Now take your iron and iron down all the edges, removing the pins as you go.  I always keep my iron on high heat so I make sure it gets pressed down really well.  Run your iron over the fabric for about 10 seconds each lengh and that should be good.  Once you have ironed the whole runner and taken out all the pins you are ready to seal your hems.  Cut the hem tape in strips that fit the triangle tips and the entire length of the runner.  Hem take has a sticker like backing that you have to remove before you iron it on so make sure you remove that before you iron.  Once you have your strips of hem tape and the backing removed, stick that between the bottom of the fabric and the folded over edge of the fabric.  Once all the hem tape is in place you can start ironing.  Make sure you give about 30 seconds per each section of the iron so the hem tape gets melted in place.  If you feel like 30 seconds isnt long enough then leave it on a little longer.  Below is a picture of the sealed edges, its not perfect but hey it looks good to me!! 

Once you get all the way around and all your edges are sealed you are ready to put the tassles on, if you decided tassles were the way to go for you (and why wouldnt you they are so much fun!)  What I did, since like I said I cant sew to save my life, I used the hem tape again to seal them to the runner.  I make 2 strips of hem tape the length of the ribbon that was attached to my tassle and ironed it to the runner.  The ribbon that was on my tassle was not satin ribbon but the kind where the glue can come through, so I let that sit for about 10 minutes to make sure it was dry before I did anything with it.  Once your tassles are on, you are ready to put your beautiful runner wherever you want!  I hope this was easy for you, and if it wasnt, let me know how I can make it easier!!  Below is a picture of my runner before it went on the dresser (the dresser in the previous posts that is getting a makeover, come back for the completed project soon)


Project Houewife out!!