Thursday, April 22, 2010

Cover Me, I'm Goin' Tin!

It was actually the tins that needed to be covered, not I.   

You may already be aware of the fact that I enjoy using tins, jars and other containers for gift giving.  It's a great way to recycle and the spruced up containers can be personalized to suit the receiver, which makes for a thoughtful handmade gift that's sure to be appreciated.  So, as a little nod to Earth Day, I'm sharing these three containers that I've dolled up with some scrapbooking paper, some spray glue, and a bit of ribbon and buttons.

This one is a baby formula can.  My daughter is four years old now, which means that I've been hanging on to this can for quite some time.  Yes, I hoard containers.  I can't bear to toss them out because - what if I need one for a crafty purpose some day?  Anyhoo, I saved the little scoop that came with it so I think I'll search the internet for a good drink mix recipe and give it to my grandma for Mother's Day. 

Preschool is over at the end of May, so I'm going to fill this little tea tin with caramel candies and Susannah can give it to her teacher...not terribly different from the tin of peppermint bark we gave her for Christmas.  I love, love, love these tins because they can be used over and over again for so many purposes!  Also, the lids are clear so you can get a sneak peek at what's inside AND they stay closed securely.  Not to mention the fact that they come packed with delicious tea for me to enjoy before I scrub them out and re-use them.

This little blue and white number with the red hearts is a Pirouline wafers tin.  Guess who got to eat all the hazelnut wafers?  Don't judge me!  I had to!  I needed the tin for a craft project.  (They complimented my tea quite nicely.)  I'm not sure what I'll use this one for.  The hearts make it kind of Valentine-ish so maybe I'll stash it away until next February.

Oh, and here's a tea tin that I covered and sent off to the winner of the Handful of Pinwheels Giveaway:

To review:  covering containers is fun, fun, fun and simple, simple, easy.  I'll post a tutorial for the method I used at a later date  {here's the tutorial!}.  Hopefully sooner than later.  Happy Earth Day!

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Saturday, April 17, 2010

How Many Tentacles Does Your Crescent Roll Have?

Friday was our day to bring a snack for preschool.  The week's lesson theme was under the sea, so I knew that the internet gods were smiling upon me when I randomly came across these crescent roll creations. 

Aren't they great?!  The kids loved them.  Some super-simple directions for making these delicious octopi can be found at Little Nummies for Little Tummies.  Their directions are for a Blue Ringed Octopus, specifically.  I altered mine a bit to reflect a preschooler's general concept of what an octopus looks like - eight legs, bulbous body, two eyes...I like to keep things as simple as possible when it's the morning-of and I don't want anything to go wrong!

I wish I had discovered this idea sooner because they would have been perfect for the sea creature birthday party we had for Susannah last year.

Here's a nice aerial shot of the cephalopods in their natural habitat (parchment paper).  I wonder if Jacques Cousteau ever came across this species in any of his underwater excursions.

Notice the mini chocolate chip eyes.  They allow for great visibility in the warm, murky waters of the Parchment Paper sea - where the creatures spend most of their time holding perfectly still so as not to attract the attention of thier predators (hungry preschoolers).

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Monday, April 12, 2010

100th Post GIVEAWAY!

Yup.  This here's my 100th post!  I've noticed that it's kind of a tradition here in Blogland to commemorate such an occasion with a giveway, and far be if from me to mess with tradition.  So, welcome to my giveaway!  Nothin' fancy, really.  Just a little something to express how much I appreciate folks stopping by for a visit and leaving kind comments every now and then.

A Big Handful of Pinwheels Giveaway:

Three different sizes of fabric pinwheels, ready to be glued or sewn onto pretty much anything.  They make for a fanciful spring/summer accessory when glued onto a headband or clip.  The tiny pinwheels would also be cute on a Mother's Day card.  Perhaps you could glue some pinwheels to tiny clothespins or craft sticks and use them to adorn some May Day baskets.  You get the idea - use them to accessorize stuff!

I also included a pinwheel hairclip and a pinwheel pin.  Then I threw in a fabric flower pin just to shake things up a bit.  Gosh, I'm so unpredictable!


Here are the particulars:

1.  To enter simply comment on this post with an answer to this question:  What is your favorite breakfast cereal?  (You can elaborate on why, but it's not required.)

2.  You have until 7:00 AM (PST) on Monday, April 19th to enter - at which time I'll turn the comments off. 

3.  I'll rely on a random number generator to select the winner and Tuesday's post (April 20th) will announce the lucky recipient. 

4.  I'll ship internationally so friends near and far can participate.

I think that's it.  If I've forgotten any pertinent information or if you have any questions, let me know!

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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Bumblebees and Sunflowers

Someone has summer on the brain.  Too much rainy, blustery western Washington weather will do that to a gal. 

My husband's birthday was few days ago, and although I was busy with Easter preparations, I was able to make these goodies for a small birthday party (just the three of us because he's not much for fanfare). 

I know I've seen these bee hive cupcakes in a magazine before but can not for the life of me remember what publication it was.  I ended up just doing a Google image search for "bumble bee hive cupcakes" and came up with a handful of results, each one slightly different - none of them with a good set of directions.  After examining the photos, though, I was fairly confident that I could pull off my own version of them.

There was some trial and error (okay, lots of error) on the "how do I get yellow stripes on these chocolate-covered almonds" part, but everything else went off without a hitch.

While I was Googling the subject of bumble bee cupcakes, I came across some neato sunflower cupcakes that I just had to try...they kinda go with the bee theme and my husband does not discriminate when it comes to treats, so I added a few sunflowers to the mix.

A Google image search will provide many sunflower cupcake photos and no two are alike.  As with the bee hive cupcakes, I examined all the photos and techniques listed and used bits and pieces of some to make my own version.  By the way, I will be posting a short tutorial for the beehive cupcakes and the sunflower cupcakes later.  Looking at all the Google results is fun, but it gets a bit overwhelming and time consuming trying to sift through all the information.  Since I didn't find a tutorial for either that I though was "just right," I figured I'd make my own.

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Friday, April 2, 2010

Fuzzy Easter Animals

My sister and her two children came over to visit yesterday.  There was no school yesterday and the weather was crappy (it's spring break around these parts) - so we were all itchin' for something to entertain us and keep us busy...a perfect opportunity to whittle away at my to-do list!  I rifled through my collection of torn out magazine pages and discovered these Barnyard Cuties from Family Fun's March 2008 issue.

Oh!  The cuteness is killing me!  When you're done oohing and squealing about how cute your styrofoam-eggs-wrapped-in-yarn creations are, you can use them as place markers for Easter gatherings (just glue the name to a toothpick and spear your critter):

They're also very stackable and make nice pyramids:

Overall, this was a perfect rainy day craft for all ages.  We had a 4 year old, an 8 year old, an 11 year old, a 29 year old, and a 32 year old and it was equally enjoyable for us all.  The only craft supply that I didn't have on hand was a package of styrofoam eggs, so this was an inexpensive endeavor, which is always nice. 

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