Thursday, March 31, 2011

Friday Favorites: April 1, 2011

Happy April Fool's Day! I won't fool you about these posts, though--they are fabulous and fun. Enjoy your Friday and the inspiration!

In celebration of April Fool's Day, C.R.A.F.T. did an April Fool's food post. Some of these food imposters are so clever--meatloaf cake, candy bacon and eggs, carrot stick Cheetos . . . ! Enjoy this fun post!

Scissors and Spatulas made jellybean bark for Easter.  Candy Cane bark is one of my favorite Christmas treats, so I know I would also like jellybean bark.  Plus, I love the colors--so fun!

C Stands for Carrie threw a Parisian themed baby shower, and it is beautiful--from the decor to the food.  It made me want to visit Paris!

If you are looking for cross crafts to do with your kids this Easter, Happy Home Fairy has some cute and kid friendly ones, including a cross cake.  There are never too many opportunities to talk with my kids about the significance of the cross and what Christ did for us and our sin.

Ink Blots and Polka Dots made a gorgeous drop cloth, rosette pillow.  She makes it look so easy too.  I will
never get tired of rosette projects.

Bliss Images and Beyond made a simple and gorgeous Easter centerpiece.  The idea is similar to the yarn egg wreath I posted on Friday Favorites a couple weeks ago.  I like the addition of the moss, and everyone has a glass bowl to use.  Isn't it pretty?

Room by Room made beautiful summer night lanterns by using apple juice jars and sand.  They really are pretty.  I love candles in glass like this--so romantic and soft. 

Amanda's Cookin did a post with delicious results.  She made Boston Cream Pie Cupcakes--drool.  I love the pie, and I love cupcakes.  Together--genius.

WobiSobi remade a plain tank top into a ruffled and blinged out top.  This looks super easy, and the top is really cute!  Maybe I'll make one this summer--I am not confident on sewing this, but it looks THAT easy (she gives GREAT directions)!

Auntie Lolo Crafts made He is Risen printables.  I love any craft that is Christ focused.  Grab your favorite color and hang it in your house this Easter.

Kims Kandy Kreations made M&M napkin rings.  How cute would these be at a kids' party or candy themed shower?

Come Together Kids made fun taco bowls for dinner.  I love these--the kids would love "creating" the taco inside their bowl.  Plus, they are easy!  Who doesn't love an easy dinner that everyone likes?--win, win!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Cake Pop Tutorial

Once again, I know I am the last person in craft blogging world to attempt something that has been around for awhile. This time it is cake pops. I didn't hear about cake pops until this last August, and I didn't start craft blogging until December 2010, so I apologize for being out of the loop. 

Plus, a lot of my readers are not craft bloggers, and they will appreciate the tutorial. Cake pops are lots of fun and easy.

First, make a cake. Buy a good ol' box of cake mix and make the cake according to the directions.

Let it cool and then crumble up the cake into tiny, fine crumbs that look like this.

Take one canister of frosting and mix it into the cake crumbs until they are well blended. It looks like this when you are done.

Roll little cake balls and place them on wax paper. You will pop them into the freezer for about 15 minutes and then put them in the fridge. Throughout the process, I kept popping them into the freezer when mine got too soft and didn't hold the lollipop stick.

Melt candy melts in any color you like. You want them to be nice and melted--if it is too thick, your cake ball will come off the stick.

Dip a lollipop stick in the melted chocolate.

Place the stick into the cold cake ball. Then dip the ball into the chocolate. Do not stir the ball around in the chocolate or you will have it come apart. Simply spoon chocolate over the top that isn't covered.

Hold the cake pop in your left hand and, holding the cake pop over the chocolate, tap your wrist with your right hand. This will tap off any extra chocolate and get the drips to go away quickly.

While the chocolate is wet, add any sprinkles or decor.

Voila! You can display them pop down (use wax paper while drying), or you can place the sticks in a styrofoam sheet and have them actually look like lollipops. Either way, they are very festive and most people like a dessert that is easy to eat and not too big.

Have fun!

I linked this post to:

Monday, March 28, 2011

Carnival Party

So, we had Carter's big birthday celebration.  It was tons of fun and a great party for everyone--the kids were busy and smiling.  Despite months of planning, however, there were two big events that affected the party.  I am sure I was the only one who really knows or cares about these things, but I have to share.

1.  My DSLR camera broke the day before the party.  My pictures of the party aren't as great as I would like, but we still were able to capture most of it.

2.  It rained all week in Southern California and it rained the night before the party.  After I dried off all the patio chairs and tables, I had to do all the set up and decor outside THAT morning and be ready for guests at 10:30.  We ran out of time and didn't get every decoration up, but we did most of it and it still looked great.  The weather was dry for the party, but it was really cold.  However, I was just happy it wasn't raining so we didn't have to put 65 people in our house!

Despite the two setbacks, the party was tons of fun.  We had a bouncehouse, our swingset, carnival games, face painting, a photo booth, a potato sack race, carnival snacks, lunch and cupcakes.  Each family left with smiles on their faces and sugar in their tummies (and in some cases, on their sticky hands and faces).

These were the invitations.  I posted a tutorial on how to make these here.

I always use my stairs as a gift area.  It adds color and fun to the entry and is a great place to store the gifts.  PLUS, it eventually added up and blocked straggling kids from wandering upstairs to our playroom.

This was the goodie bag table.  I had clear bags for almost everyone, which I stuffed with colored raffia, a clown nose and a "winner" ribbon.  Then, I had a sign telling them all to fill their bags with goodies from the bowls on the table--cotton candy, cookies, candy, lollipops and licorice.  I had animal cookie boxes for kids too young for candy and balls for the newborns.  Sorry the burlap is falling off the sides of the table in this picture.  I had to keep taping it back up and I took the pic without looking at that detail.

I used cotton candy from the dollar bin at target.  I opened each package and divided it into two ziploc bags.  I covered the "seal" part of the baggy with cardstock and dollar carnival cupcake holders I found at Michael's.  It was so cost effective and easy!

Cookies for the toddlers who were too young for candy. . .

M&M's, popcorn, peanuts and licorice were out as snacks.  I found the big Popcorn bowls at Party America.

Water and soda for the adults and Capri Suns for the kiddos.

Marshmallow "popcorn" cupcakes.  I got the cupcake sleeves from Oriental Trading Company, and I made the little toppers from scrapbooking paper.

I diluted yellow food coloring in water and sprinkled it on the mini marshmallows in a ziploc bag.  This gave it a lightly "buttered" look.  It also slightly melted the marshmallows and made them stick together slightly, but it still worked.

This is where my 2 year old camped out for most of the party.  He is now made up of 90% licorice.

I got Popcorn bags from Oriental Trading Company and borrowed my nephew's popcorn machine.  The hot popcorn was a nice touch since it was cold outside!

I posted about this banner earlier.  You can read about it here.

We have a bounce house we co-bought with two other families.  We all pass it around and share it when we need it.  It was a nice place for the kids to burn off some sugar.

The vertical picture banners were fun.  People enjoyed looking at the pictures of Carter over the past 5 years.  You can read a tutorial about these here.

We had little carnival "games" spread throughout the yard.  I had face painting, duck fishing, clown ball toss, knock over the cans,  three in a row ping pong toss and we held a potato sack race.  I didn't do tickets or prizes for the games, as they were more just for entertainment for the parents and kids.  Plus, it required fewer adults to "man" the area if it was just open for play at any time.

The swingset was a big hit too!

I made little signs for each game area.  I just used prescalloped cardstock squares and used carnival fonts off to print the names off the computer.  I also used the carnival striped scrapbooking paper.

We had carnival corndogs, fairground fruit salad, and carousel chips for lunch.  Yum!

Enjoying lunch.

I had a photo booth area over my fireplace just inside the house.  We had the camera on a tripod and a remote trigger to take pictures while people posed. 

We bought some "dress up" props from Oriental Trading Company for the photo booth area.

So cute!

There is the big birthday boy--five years old!

Dressing up for the pictures was completely optional.

Of course, we had a LARGE pot of coffee for the moms and dads because it was a very cold day. 

It was a fun day and a great party.  Happy birthday, Carter!

I linked this post to:

The Girl Creative
Keeping It Simple

Sumo Sweet Stuff
BWS tips button
Tip Junkie handmade projects

The Trendy Treehouse


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