Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Top Five Recipes of 2013

Not only do I love to do crafty stuff, but I also love fiddling around in the kitchen.
I'm sure you've noticed that like my crafts, my recipes are almost always quick and easy.
I thought we'd go back and look at the top five viewed recipes this year. . .

If you can believe it, the base of this cobbler is cake mix!

Can you ever go wrong with cinnamon and sugar?!?

The yummy-ness of tacos in a layered pie. So good.

 This the closest thing to eating a cinnamon roll besides eating an actual cinnamon roll!

The mix of the sour cream and creamy soups in this casserole are like a
taste explosion in your mouth:)

Try one. Try them all- I think you'll be pleased not only with their taste factor, but also with the speed at which you can complete them!

Thanks for stopping by and God bless.

And what does the Lord require of you but to do justly,
to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?
Micah 6:8

Monday, December 30, 2013

Keep All Those Christmas Cards You Got This Year!

I just love getting Christmas cards in the mail. I'm glad people still do this. So many old traditions have gone by the wayside as our society get more tech-y, and it will be a sad time when this one does.
I have a super easy idea on what you can do with those cards now that Christmas has passed.
Bind them all together to make a Christmas card book!

Last year I showed you how to do this using either an old book as your cover
or creating a cover out of pattern paper and cardstock.
 I tried to make it even simpler this year by using a card as the cover of the card book.

Gather together all the cards you received this year.

Choose a large one that will become your cover.

Cut it in half.

Add the year somewhere on the front using stickers, stamps, or your own handwriting.
This is important - you may think you'll remember what year you got these, but several years down the road, the details will get fuzzy. Trust me.

Mark out two spots with a ruler about 1 1/2" from the top and from the bottom.

Punch holes on your marks. 
Use this card as a guide to punch holes in the rest of your cards.

Bind them with office rings.
You can get these at any office supply store and even in the office supply section at Walmart.

Ta-da! Wasn't that easy?
Now you can place this bundle in a basket and put it out every Christmas to look at the years gone by. I've done this for the last three years, and it is amazing to look back over these card photos and see how much everybody has changed.
P.S. This would be a great idea to do with your birthday cards, too.
You could bind one year by itself or several years together.
Please stop back by on Friday as I'm going to go back over this year and
look at my top 10 DIY projects.
Thanks for stopping by and God bless.

You open Your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing.
Psalm 145:16

This post is linked to Skip to My Lou, Too Much Time On My Hands, and Between Naps on the Porch.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Making and Wrapping Bulk Christmas Gifts

This is the time of year that I try to come up with gift ideas that I can make in bulk. 
I have 18 friends at church and 13 co-workers to whom I give gifts and that can get pretty expensive! To keep the costs down, I try to give handmade gifts.
Something else that adds up is the wrapping.
This year I used white paper bags, mailing labels, and decorative tape to make my own gift bags.

I cut off about the top 3 1/2" of the bag, then folded the top down and sealed it closed with one or two pieces of decorative tape.
Instead of regular gift tags, I used some old mailing labels.

Kinda cute and unique, huh?
Can't beat the price of these!
My co-workers received a bracelet with a quote.
My hubby curved the quote plaques for me. Then I attached a chain and clasp.

I bought the Tim Holtz quote charms at Hobby Lobby.
They're regularly $7.99 for a set of 12, but I used my 40% off coupon on two packs.
I also bought a roll of chain for 40% off of $11.99.
I already had the pearls and clasps.
Each bracelet cost around $1 and I have lots of chain and quote plaques left over
to make additional bracelets.
For the gifts for my church friends, I made ornaments.
I used burlap and sewed small birds.
Some have cotton wings with a word stamped on them.

And some have small pieces of vintage doilies for wings.

Over the years, I've chosen a  few different projects that could be done in bulk and given as gifts.
If you have any ideas for bulk Christmas gifts, please leave me a comment!
I'm always up for good ideas:)
Thanks for stopping by and God bless.
Praise the Lord! For it is good to sing praises to our God
Psalm 147:1

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Thrifty Thursday #98

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas!
Ours was very nice and relaxing. It was very slow paced which was nice after the hectic two weeks leading up to it where I was super busy preparing for it.
Last week I showed you some awesome stuff that I found at an estate sale. Well, I headed back to that same sale on the last day to see if I could find anything else.
Last days at estate sales are fun because everything is usually half off.

I found these awesome tiny flashcards for a dollar!
They're 3" x 2". I love finding stuff like this!
I'm thinking these would make a cute garland.

I also picked up these vintage hankies.
The larger one was only fifty cents and the other two were a quarter each.
Aren't they all so pretty?
I almost have enough blue hankies to make some cafe curtains:)

I simply cannot pass up old paper.
I found this pack of old graph paper- with orange lines- for a dime. Since everything was half off, the gal threw this in for free!
Before decorating for a Christmas banquet last week, I made a quick stop into a thrift store to look for any pretties that we could use to decorate.
I found this creamer cup marked down to a dime.
It doesn't have a lid, but I planned to use it for a candle holder, so it didnt' need one!

I also found these three jars for fifty cents each.
The front one has cup measurements on it. The back two have square edges instead of being round.
I really don't need anymore jars, but I couldn't resist these.

I got this old platter for a dollar. Who can't use an old silver platter? It came in handy for our banquet decorating. After we used it, I tucked it away because I'm sure that it will come in handy again.
That's all my scores for this week. I wish happy treasure hunting to you all!
Thanks for stopping by and God bless.
Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving
Psalm 147:7
 This post is linked to Be Different Act Normal and I Heart Naptime.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Recipe of the Week#99 -Roll Out Sugar Cookies

Roll Out Sugar Cookies
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 tsp cream of tartar
1 tsp baking soda
3 cups flour

Preheat oven to 400. Mix butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla. Mix in flour, baking soda, and cream of tartar. Chill dough. Roll dough to 1/4" thickness on a floured surface. Cut out cookies. Bake 6-8 minutes til edges are golden.

1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
3 Tbsp soft butter
1-2 Tbsp milk or cream

Beat all ingredients together til smooth. Add food coloring as desired. Ice cookies.

This is my mother-in-law's recipe and these are truly the best sugar cookies I've ever eaten! I pair them up with this sweet icing and they're unbelievable! These are a family favorite.

Thanks for stopping by and God bless.

Great is our Lord, and mighty in power
Psalm 147:5 
This post is linked to Skip to My Lou, Tater Tots and Jello, and Between Naps on the Porch.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Christmas Centerpieces and Vintage Decor

Last week I got to help two of my good friends decorate for a Christmas banquet. 
We had seven tables and two counter tops that needed to be made pretty.
We wanted to keep it low cost, but highly cute.
We planned for a shabby, old-fashioned Christmas look by bringing stuff from our houses and blending it together for these centerpieces.
Take a look and see what you think. . .

This was on the main counter top amid the fixings for fajitas.
We used lots of mason jars filled with cranberries, greens, and floating candles.

Hanging along the bottom edge of the counter was this tea-stained vintage lace garland and a garland of cranberries.

This was arranged on the dessert bar.
Don't you just love those large lanterns?
See the book page garland strewn throughout the arrangement?
The red candles were painted with Mod Podge and rolled in Epsom salts to get that "snowy" look.

The kids had made the paper bag angels, so we made them the focus of several of the arrangements.
You'll notice more cranberries here.
In each arrangement, we used Scrabble tiles spelling out words in tile holders.
This was on the table as you first entered.
There's three candles and a vintage book photo holder displaying two old postcards.
We used lots of burlap and old doilies and lace throughout.

For smaller arrangements, we paired up vintage books with teacups that we used as candle holders.
One of my friends thought up the idea of using teacups like that and I just love that look!

I adore the look of the wood rounds and the green moss.

We used Scrabble tiles like confetti and sprinkled them around all the arrangements.
 Sweet and simple, huh?

More vintage books

We incorporated an old film canister as a tray beneath this arrangement.

This is my old yard sale birdhouse that we used for a centerpiece.
How cute is it paired with old books and candles?

Most the centerpieces contained similar items, just arranged differently.

We used maroon and white tablecloths and beautiful burlap table runners.

This buffet is beautiful on its own, but we upped it's loveliness with a vintage book table runner, candles, and this awesome typewriter (which isn't mine, but I wish it was!).

Finally, this is the corner that was set up for family photos.
I love the vintage feel between the burlap, cranberries, lace, and old books.
When we finished decorating, I told my friends that they need to come to my house and decorate my living room like this!
P.S. Want to know how much of this stuff came from thrift stores and yard sales?
Well, I'll tell you: the film canisters, all the old books, the Christmas blocks in the first photo, the tall silver candle sticks, the vegetable graters (in the above photo), all the tea cups, one of the wooden bowls, the Scrabble tiles, the jar of keys, and the large green bird house!
Who says you can't decorate with stuff from secondhand stores?!? :)
Thanks for stopping by and God bless.

Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation.
Habakkuk 3:18

This post is linked to Funky Junk, Between Naps on the PorchThe Dedicated House, My Girlish Whims, and Craft-O-Maniac.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Projects Using Book Pages

After tearing covers off of books for this project, needless to say, I had quite a few books without covers. Here are some ways that I used the leftovers . . .

First off, I took four of the books, and tied them together with twine. Then I used some letter stamps and Staz On ink and stamped the word "Love" on the edges of the pages.

How simple is this?!?
To add a little holiday zing, I put a sprig of holly in the twine.

Next I glued pages to the chipboard letters J, O, Y.
Once I adhered the page to the letter, I sanded around the edges to get rid of the excess. This is how I kept the edges so smooth.
I got the letters at Hobby Lobby- half off! So they were only $.99 apiece!
Sweet and simple.
Once I remove the holiday berries, I can have them out all year.

I sewed this book page garland in under 15 minutes.
I followed the tutorial I found here.
Super easy. Super cute.

I even used a few strips to pep up this wooden spool garland.
Book pages, old spools- who wouldn't love this?:)
Swing back by on Monday and I'll show you how these projects were used to decorate for a Christmas party.
Thanks so much for stopping by and God bless.
Cause me to hear Your lovingkindness in the morning, for in You do I trust
Psalm 143:8