Last Call

I just realized that it’s almost April!  Which means I need to get busy planning what little tricks I’ll play on the hooligans on April 1, but also it means that SALE-A-BRATION at Stampin’ Up! is ALMOST OVER!!!!
 
If you’re in need of stamps, supplies, or inspiration, pop on over to my website and do a little shopping…before midnight on March 31, if you want FREE stamps and supplies, that is.  Just a reminder that the 2010-2012 In Colors will be retiring (gone, not availalble, never to be seen again) as of June 1, 2012.  Those colors are Concord Crush, Pear Pizzazz, Poppy Parade, Blushing Bride, and Peach Parfait.  I’m particularly fond of Pear Pizzazz and Poppy Parade, so I’m going to stock up on papers and ink refills.  Oh, and ribbon in those colors.  That’s my hard sell for Stampin’ Up!…now to show you a couple of Easter cards to whet your stamping appetite!

easter-egg

Supplies: Well-Scripted stamp set(retired)
Whisper White, Melon Mambo, and Pretty in Pink cardstock; Retired Welcome Neighbor DSP
XL Oval, Corner Rounder, and Scallop Circle punches; Big Shot and Embossing Folder

I apologize for using so many retired and/or non-Stampin’ Up! products on this card.  It’s easily adapted to what you already have, though, with other papers and embossing folders.  You could even print out the sentiment on DSP in whatever font you like from your computer.  I just like the way you get a peek of the ovals so they appear to be egg-shaped.

This could also be a birthday or anytime card with peeks of presents, stamped flowers, or balloons.
The other Easter card I made this week is a total CASE (that’s stamper-ese for I copied it from someone else) from Jason’s Stamping Pad.

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How cute is that?  He has a list of all the supplies…uses the Everyday Enchantment DSP which is only available as a Sale-A-Bration item, so if you want it, place an order ASAP!  I made it from just the list of supplies, without specific directions, and it really wasn’t difficult to figure out. I mean, once he’d done all the work and I just had to copy it!

Now I’ve got to get busy figuring out my April Fool’s tricks.  Jello in a juice glass with a straw is always good, as well as putting food coloring in the bottom of a glass or cereal bowl, so the milk changes color as you add it.  I’ve also made “grilled cheese” with slices of toasted pound cake as the bread and orange-tinted icing as the cheese.  Oh, and the ever-popular cupcakes made of little meatloaves with tinted mashed potato “icing” on top.

Have fun, and I hope you don’t get fooled!

Stamp Those Cookies!

Last fall, Stampin’ Up! introduced Sweet Pressed Cookie Stamps.  I was skeptical of how crisp the images would remain, but I kept seeing the same concept in various kitchen catalogs such as Williams-Sonoma and Crate and Barrel.  So I thought it must be possible.  But how easy would it be?  I ordered both the holiday and the occasions sets (because why go halfway when you’re unsure about something?).

We made some shortbread cookies with hearts on them for the hooligans’ great-grandma for her birthday, and they turned out pretty well.  They stuck a little as we stamped, though, so I wasn’t all gung-ho about trying them again.DSC_0025
Princess Thundercloud really wanted to make cookies today, so I decided to give the Easter ones a try.  I followed the recipe that came with the stamps to the letter, and these worked beautifully.  Well, they didn’t stick, anyway.  Thundercloud helped decorate them, so I’m not sure “beautiful” is the adjective to use.

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The steps, in case you can’t figure out how stamping cookies would work.

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Switching out the stamps was super easy…even a three-year-old can do it!
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She was pretty proud of her abilities!

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I think these got a little too brown, but they still taste yummy. The images really are very crisp on the cookies, in real life.
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We decorated them using by painting on corn syrup where we wanted sugar pearls and colored sugar to stick.  The colors are just water with food coloring that we also painted on.
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All in all, while not professional, they do look very spring-y and handcrafted!  They really didn’t take long, either…no chilling of the dough or waiting for icing to set.

Here’s the recipe.  It’s a good shortbread, even without stamping on it!

Sugared Shortbread (recipe from Stampin’ Up!)

1 cup salted butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar, plus more for rolling
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1/4 cup cornstarch
1-3/4 cup all-purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Cream butter and sugars until fluffy.  Add vanilla, cornstarch, and flour and mix well.  Dough should be soft, but not sticky.  If it’s sticky, add a bit of flour, 2 Tbsp at a time, until it isn’t.

Roll dough into 1-1/2” balls and roll in granulated sugar.  Place on ungreased cookie sheet and press with cookie stamp.  Place 3” apart.  Bake for 15 to 17 minutes, until bottom is slightly brown but top is not.

Makes approximately 18 cookies.

By the way. Chrissy over at The Taylor House blog is hosting her first linky party…check it out for some fun ideas and inspiration!

The Taylor House

Easter…Not Really About Bunnies and Chocolate?

Lest you think from all my Easter crafts that we are complete heathens who just care about the competition of egg hunts and biting the heads off chocolate bunnies, here are links to a few of the meaningful preparations we do for Easter. I could do tutorials of my own, but since someone else already did, why not give them the credit for being inspiring?
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Resurrection Eggs are a favorite every year at our house. My mom gave me the instructions for making these back before I even had kids, and I made them for friends and such. This is a great visual aid to reinforce the story of Easter, for kids and adults alike. The 12 day countdown starts today, so you still have time…I bet you have all the supplies right in your home already!
image Resurrection Cookies are another great (and tasty) way to visually experience the story of Jesus’ death and resurrection. They’re a meringue cookie that has various ingredients symbolic of parts of the Easter story, and are left in the oven overnight to finish…then the inside is empty, as was the tomb. So make these the night before Easter, since they sit overnight.
imageMy sister-in-law taught me years ago about the tradition of Hot Cross Buns on Good Friday. The icing cross on top reminds us of the crucifixion and Jesus. In past years, I’ve used a mix from King Arthur Flour that is delicious, but this year I’m making them from scratch, although still from a King Arthur recipe.

As with so many Christian traditions, hot cross buns can be traced to a pagan celebration that was replaced with a Christian one as Christianity spread. The four quadrants the icing creates represent the four seasons and the goddess Eostre. Really. I looked it up on Wikipedia. No, I’m joking. I did actual research.

Our eldest child is making his First Communion at the end of April, so this is an especially meaningful Lenten and Easter season for us. I’m sure his religious ed teacher thinks we’ve taught him nothing, as he comes home from class amazed each week. Hopefully she realizes that it’s a case of him finally believing when any adult other than his parents tell him things. He continues to think we’re not too bright and lucky to have him to teach us stuff.
Last night he told me about the soldier forcing Jesus to take the sponge soaked in wine (vinegar is the way I learned it growing up) and he was surprised I knew about it already. Oh, well, if it makes him happy to “discover” this, it makes me happy, too! I may have to start acting like a dumb blonde, so he can educate me.

Berry-best Chicken Salad

Can you tell we watch a little too much Strawberry Shortcake around here? Of course, that threshold is not too hard to surpass. But on with blog business.

I have a confession to make. I do not like salad. I know, it’s shocking. I should say I don’t like lettuce. I love chopped vegetable salads, and I like main dish salads that are heavy on vegetables other than lettuce. And yes, I’ve tried all kinds…it’s not that I tried Iceberg and didn’t care for it. Although I did and didn’t.

Since moving to Wisconsin, we have become Culver’s Butterburger and Custard fans. If you’ve not tried either, they are da bomb. As the kids say. (I know they don’t really say that anymore, but I like to sound hip.) Occasionally, though, if I really want custard after my meal, I order one of their chicken salads instead of a Butterburger. It’s really pointless, since I looked up the nutrition info online and the salad is basically the same as a burger, but I feel virtuous about it.

They do make a darn tasty Strawberry Fields Chicken Salad, and here’s my home version of it.

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Chicken Salad with Strawberries

2 boneless chicken breasts, about 6 oz. each

1 heart Romaine lettuce, chopped

2 cups strawberries, chopped (about 4 whole berries per salad)

1/2 to 1 cup Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

1/2 cup green onions, sliced (green parts only)

1/2 cup chopped roasted pistachios, pecans, or almonds (we prefer pistachios)

Raspberry or Cranberry Vinaigrette, store-bought
or
Strawberry-Balsamic Dressing: Whisk together 1 Tbsp strawberry jam, 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar, and 6 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil.

1. Pressing down on a chicken breast with one hand, slice horizontally through the center to make 2 thin fillets with each breast. Alternatively, you can buy the thin-sliced ones, but where’s the fun in that?

2. Salt and pepper them well, and place on very hot grill or grill pan. I use a cast-iron grill my GI gave me for Christmas…it works fabulously. Drizzle a bit of olive oil on first, then heat over medium high. Reduce to medium when you put the chicken in, and leave it alone for about 5 minutes, until it turns loose on its own. That means it’s ready to turn over. Cook on the other side for about 3 minutes, until it also turns loose. If you’re grilling it outside, I’m sure you know how to cook a piece of chicken, so I won’t boss you about it.

3. Remove the chicken and let it rest while you assemble the salads. Divide evenly among 4 chilled plates the lettuce, strawberries, onions, nuts, and cheese. Slice chicken diagonally and arrange prettily (as I did not in the photo) on top of salad, then drizzle with dressing. The strawberries are so juicy and the salad so flavorful, it doesn’t need a lot of dressing.

This comes together in no time…you can easily cut up the lettuce, strawberries, and nuts in the time it takes the chicken to cook. We can sit down to dinner a half hour after I decide to make this. We usually have some sort of French or Italian bread to accompany it…after all, we’re not having custard for dessert when we eat at home!

So Very Kool (Aid)

I’ve noticed several examples of coloring eggs using Koolaid, and I really wanted to try it. I love the smell of vinegar in mixed in regular Paas egg dye…I’m immediately mentally back in my mom’s kitchen, coloring eggs with my brother and her. We often travel for Easter, though, and it’s hard to color eggs in our hotel room, even ones with a kitchenette, when you have to take vinegar along on your vacation.

With Kool-aid, you just mix a packet of non-sweetened powder with 2/3 cup water in a coffee cup, and, Bob’s your uncle, your dye is ready! The packets are 20 cents each, so it’s about the same cost as regular dye tablets. I wasn’t able to find as many colors, and I read that grape winds up gray, so I’m mixing blue and cherry to make it. I’ll let you know how it turns out.

I wanted a vase filled with eggs in graduated shades to use as a centerpiece. First, I blew out 36 eggs. I know, it’s a ton. I only did 18 at first, but that wasn’t enough to fill my vase. Actually, I’m using my trifle bowl. See?

My GI came home as I was starting the second 18 eggs, so I was happy to share the experience with him. I poked the holes and scrambled the insides, and he blew out most of them. I tell you this in case he reads this post and expects credit.

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As you can kind of see, it’s half “strawberry” eggs and half “lemon-lime.” To get the graduated effect, I left 6 eggs in for a minute and a half, 6 for 30 seconds, and the last 6 I just dipped in to cover, then immediately out.

DSC_0022 The lemon-lime ones are most noticeable graduated, but they’re both pretty.

I colored the strawberry ones using my fingers to submerge the eggs. Apparently Kool-aid is quite strongly colored…it took many, many hand-washings to get it off my fingers. I felt really virtuous that my kids have never had it (at least not at our house), so I’m not responsible for turning their intestines weird colors.

With the green, I used the tines of a fork to submerge the eggs, and my fingers were glad of it.

And what to do with all those blown out insides? I made a yummy Roasted Vegetable Frittata with some. It’s adapted (a bit) from Ina Garten’s How Easy Is That? cookbook. I love her recipes. I’ve never made anything from her that wasn’t superb.

Roasted Vegetable Frittata
1 small zucchini, cut into 1-inch slices–halved (aiming for bite-sized pieces)
1 large red bell pepper, seeded and 1-1/2 inch dice
1/2 red onion, 1-1/2 inch dice
3 Tbsp good olive oil, for drizzling
1/2 tsp. each salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves minced garlic
9 large eggs
3/4 cup fat-free half-and-half or whole milk
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon butter
1 green onion, diced

1/2 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
–Spray a large baking sheet with cooking spray and spread zucchini, red pepper, and red onion on it. Drizzle with oil and toss to coat. Roast 425°F for 15 minutes; add the garlic and roast for 10 more minutes. Remove from oven and lower heat to 350°F.
–In a medium bowl, whisked the eggs, half-and-half, Parmesan, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.
–In a large oven-proof skillet, melt the butter and cook green onion for 1 minute.Add roasted vegetable, cook for a minute, then pour the egg mixture over the veggie mixture. Cook on stovetop, without stirring for 2 minutes, then pop it right back into the oven for 20 minutes, until the frittata was nice and puffed up. Sprinkle cheddar (or whatever kind of cheese you have on hand) to the top, bake for another 3 minutes until the cheese was melted. Serve hot. This served all of us, with a lunch leftover.

We had it with ciabatta cinnamon toast and cut-up strawberries, blueberries, grapes, and pineapple.

To make the cinnamon toast, I mixed 1/2 cup softened butter with 1/2 cup sugar and 1 Tbsp cinnamon. Then I split some ciabatta rolls from Costco and cut them diagonally, spread them with the butter mix, and baked them at 350 for 8 minutes. Lastly, I broiled them for about 2 minutes, until the top was crunchy.

I know this sounds like an involved meal, but it took less than hour, even roasting the veggies. Most of that was not hands on time, either. I spent about 5 minutes prepping the veggies, 5 minutes mixing the eggs and sauteing the green onions, and 10 minutes on the bread and fruit. So 20 min of hands on time isn’t bad for such a satisfying dinner!

An egg is roughly 1/4 cup. I blew mine into an 8-cup measuring cup/bowl, then just measured out the amount I needed for each recipe. I also made an Asparagus Sourdough Strata from King Arthur Flour and Blueberry Stuffed French Toast and put them in the freezer for some future breakfasts or dinners. Then I had to go take some ibuprofen to get rid of the massive egg-blowing induced headache!

Layer It In!

It’s so fun to give someone a mix rather than the actual cookies, bread, or soup already made…in my opinion, that is! Being the kid of teachers, I remember how inundated our house was on holidays with homemade treats. It was great, but it would have been nice to have some of them a few weeks later. Don’t get me wrong…teachers are appreciative of anything you give them…Heaven knows they deserve it!

I saw these cute Easter carafes at…guess which of the 4 places I shop? Yes, Target! I imagine my family as one who sits down to a full breakfast every morning, with pancakes, bacon, and eggs dished up on the table and a carafe of freshly-squeezed orange juice. Instead, I pour Tropicana’s best directly from the carton into our glasses. But wouldn’t it be wonderful to be a carafe-style family? Aahhh, someday.

Until then, this carafe makes a great container for a layered cookie mix, using pastel M&M’s. It would be a perfect teacher, hostess, or friend gift. Most layered cookie recipes fill a quart jar, or 4 cups. This carafe is larger, which is a good thing for juice because our family of 5 needs more than a quart of juice.
Since I had so much space at the top of this carafe, I filled it with edible Easter grass (also from Target, of course). When using a Mason jar, I usually crumple up wax paper just to fill the space at the very top, in case someone (like my hooligans), decides to upend the jar on the way to the recipient. In this case, I cut a circle of wax paper the same diameter as the carafe, just to separate the M&M’s from the edible grass. This would become all mixed up if turned upside down, though, so don’t give it to a hooligan to deliver.

M&M Cookies
In jar, layer the following. Use the end of a wooden spoon to tamp each layer down before adding the next layer.

1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar(spoon it in, so it doesn’t go “whomp” and make the white sugar uneven)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup M&M’s (whatever colors fit the occasion)

Embellish as you wish. I used my Big Shot and the new Framelits to cut a label out of chalkboard decal paper. That way, they can erase the greeting and write the contents on the carafe later. I tied the directions on using Stampin’ Up!’s new Pool Party Bakers’ Twine.

Speaking of directions, here they are, so people won’t think you just gave them a carafe of random ingredients.

M&M Cookies

3/4 cup butter , softened
2 eggs

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Empty container into a large bowl.
2. Add butter and eggs. Stir by hand (so you don’t break the candies) until well-mixed.
3. Drop by spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes, until edges are browned.
4. Remove from oven and let cookies cool on baking sheet for 1 minute. Remove to wire rack and let cool completely. Or eat them warm with milk…that’s the best!

Makes 3 dozen or so

Now I’m all ready to be invited somewhere that requires me to bring a gift. Anyone? Anyone? Buehler? But first, I’m gonna share this project over at Frugal Girls Chic and Crafty Party…have you checked it? So much inspiration every week…just click on the button below and browse away!

Taking It Easy

By taking it easy I mean I’’ve made some super simple stuff lately…fabulously easy cookies and a cute little tiered stand to put them on.

Actually, this particular stand is one I made last year; it’s more spring-ish than my latest one, so it’s the one I’m showing you! I found myself with a few mismatched juice glasses and didn’t want to just throw them out, but didn’t really have cabinet space for them. In addition, every time Target has new melamine plates, I crave them. Alas, I already have plenty of non-plastic plates, so I really don’t need more. We have lots of different melamine ones the kids use for holidays, too. I put on my thinking (also known as my justification for more plates) hat and came up with this use for them.

All you do is use E6000 (yes, I should be their paid spokesperson) to cement the plates together with the glass as a pedestal. Glass candlesticks also make a great pedestal, but mine are still in unbroken pairs, so I used what I had. I wash this by hand, but it’s holding up perfectly so far…and it’s made it through a cross-country move

I think I’ve mentioned that I send treats in every Friday with my GI Joe. More often that I care to admit, I remember this at bedtime on Thursday night. This happened last week, so I was madly searching my pantry. I found a box of Krusteaz Salted Caramel Chocolate Cookie mix from Costco, which was perfect but not enough for the whole office.

Then I remembered a recipe I came across on Pinterest called “HolyC#$%TheseAreAmazing Cookies.” Who wouldn’t be tempted to try those? The original post can be found at the Sticky, Gooey, Creamy, Chewy blog.

HolyCowTheseAreAmazing Cookies

(aka Peanut Butter Cornflake Balls)

(Makes about 3 dozen cookies)

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup corn syrup
  • 1 jar (18 oz ounce) peanut butter, crunchy or smooth (I like creamy.)
  • 6 cups corn flakes
  • 3 oz good quality chocolate of your choice (OK, so I used Nestle semisweet chips ‘cause that’s what I had and it was bedtime)

Directions

  1. Combine sugar and corn syrup in a medium saucepan. Place over medium-high heat and stir until the mixture comes to a full boil. Remove from heat and stir in the whole jar of peanut butter. Mix well.
  2. Add corn flakes to a large bowl. Pour peanut butter mixture over corn flakes and mix well, taking care to coat all of the corn flakes.
  3. With a tablespoon or cookie scoop, scoop out and form into 1-2 inch balls, depending on your preference, and place them on a cookie sheet lined with parchment or wax paper.
  4. Put the chocolate in a Ziploc and melt in the microwave for about 30 seconds. Smoosh it until it’s smooth. Drizzle the melted chocolate over the cookies.

It’s a very good thing I made these at bedtime, or I probably would have eaten a large portion if not all of them. They were…yes, amazing!

Hope you have a take it easy kind of day!

Shrimp-ly Yummy

Being a recipe addict has a major drawback…so many recipes, so little time. We rarely have the same thing twice, unless my family really emphasizes to me how much they love a recipe. It’s pretty funny, how well trained they are. Even the littlest hooligan will say, “This is the best meal ever…you gots to make this again!”

Add to this my dislike for hot shrimp, which is, I know, odd. The rest of the family loves shrimp in hot dishes, so I really should make it more. This recipe is one I used to make often, back before kids, then I forgot about it until we were in Savannah and I remembered that I do like shrimp and grits.

I have no idea why this photo is so blurry…in Photoshop, it’s clear, but when I uploaded it, something happened. Sorry about that. Anyhoo, this is a lightened shrimp dish, and takes very little time (as do most shrimp dishes). I generally have the ingredients on hand, with shrimp in the freezer, so it’s a good oh-my-gosh-I-forgot-to-thaw-anything dinner. Enjoy!

Mediterranean Shrimp with Orzo

  • Cooking spray
  • 1 cup uncooked orzo (rice-shaped pasta)
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil, divided
  • 14 oz can diced tomato, drained
  • 1 cup sliced green onions
  • 1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1-1/2 pounds medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

1. Preheat oven to 450°.
2. Coat casserole pan with cooking spray.
3. Cook the pasta in boiling water 5 minutes, omitting salt and fat; drain. Place the pasta in a large bowl. Stir in 2 teaspoons oil and next 7 ingredients (2 teaspoons oil through pepper). Place the orzo mixture in prepared dish. Combine shrimp and basil. Arrange shrimp mixture on orzo mixture. Cover tightly with foil. Bake at 450° for 25 minutes or until the shrimp are done.

Crazy easy, right?

You Send Me Soaring

A couple of weeks ago, Stampin’ Up! held a regional conference right here in Milwaukee. I was thrilled to go, and I learned so much…I’m still sorting through all the photos I took of cards and ideas. Today I wanted to show you a couple of cards we made there, as well as a fabulous trick with a circle punch.

Supplies: Send Me Soaring stamp set (from the Occasions mini)
Calypso Coral, Crumb Cake, Whisper White cardstock; Berry Blossoms and Sweet Shop DSP
Calypso Coral, Lucky Limeade, and Pool Party Classic Inks; Calypso Coral marker
Uniball Signo Gel Pen; Pool Party Ruffled Ribbon; Bitty Buttons
Blossom Bouquet, Scallop Edge, Small Heart, 1-1/4” circle, and 1 3/8” circle punches

This card shows several nifty tips. The polka-dot flower center is made by stamping a kite image from the set in Calypso Coral on Whisper White paper four times, then punching out small hearts. The leaf is also the kite stamped in Lucky Limeade, then cut out using the 1-1/4” punch. Or you could just snip it with Paper Snips.

But here’s my favorite tip of the day…rounding corners using the 1-1/4” circle punch. Yes, I know it’s life-changing.


It’s so simple…just slide the corner of your paper into the punch from the bottom, into the slit between the upper and lower punch blades, and punch. Ta-da!

The other card is pretty complicated, only because of the placement of the kite wheel, so I’m not really giving instructions. It’s so super cute, though, I have to share.

Supplies: Send Me Soaring stamp set
Basic Gray, Lucky Limeade, Pool Party, and Whisper White Cardstock; Berry Blossoms DSP
Basic Gray, Calypso Coral, Lucky Limeade, and Pool Party Classic Pads;
Calypso Coral and Lucky Limeade Markers; Lucky Limeade Bakers’ Twine; Neutrals Brads;
Scallop Edge, Small Heart, and 1-1/4” Circle Punches
Big Shot and 3” Circle Originals Die

Basically, there’s a small brad attaching the 3” circle at a spot about halfway between the sentiment and the circle for the kite. The entire front white panel is popped out on Dimensionals to give the circle room to spin. See…

We used the Mat Pack template to make the dot borders using markers. Those Stampin’ Up! designers are just so clever. Can you imagine how wonderful it would be to be paid to create wonderful projects like this?

I thought I didn’t need this Send Me Soaring set, but I think I may. It’s just so stinkin’ cute!

Don’t forget Sale-a-Bration is going on until the end of March…and that means FREE stamps or accessories with every $50 you spend on products. Check it out on my website if you feel the need for some new supplies and inspiration!

Rollin’ in Dough

My GI, while absolutely a great dad almost always, has a Playdough phobia. He hates it…even outside. Sometimes, though, I just need the hooligans need to work on their fine motor skills. And thus, we need to shape some dough.

We never have actual Playdough in the house (see reason above) but I do always have baking soda and cornstarch, the two main ingredients in this wonderful stovetop modeling clay.

DSC_0003My mom and grandmother were both art teachers, and we did lots of crafty stuff growing up…including tons of salt dough creations. I remember that being fun, but with Oklahoma’s humidity, they never lasted long.

I’ve not tried drying out this dough…my kids like to play with it too much. It has lasted about 6 months, stored in Ziploc bags in the (garage) refrigerator. Shhhh…I don’t think the hubs knows it’s there. I like the texture of this dough, and it’s white when it’s done, unlike other doughs. That makes it easier to color.

But enough rattling on…here’s the how-to.

Stovetop Modeling Clay

16 oz box baking soda

1 cup cornstarch

1 1/2 cups water

Liquid food coloring

In a saucepan, stir together baking soda and cornstarch, then whisk in water until smooth. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture begins to bubble up and get thick and lumpy. Continue cooking and stirring until it’s really thick and smooth, about 4 minutes.

Remove from heat and turn out onto a plate. Let it sit until cool enough to handle (for you, not your kids!). Divide into four equal portions, then add a couple of drops of food coloring to each ball. Knead it like bread dough for a few minutes, until the color is evenly distributed and as dark as you’d like. Wash your hands between each color, to keep colors true.

Let the colored dough sit, loosely covered, until completely cool. Store in Ziploc bags in refrigerator (separate colors in separate bags). Once it’s blended, we’ve never had problems with colors coming off on our hands or tables.

Like Playdough, if little bits fall off as you play, you can easily sweep it up when it dries.

I think this would make a great addition to an Easter basket, the colors are so spring-y… tomorrow is the first day of spring, after all! And when isn’t it a good thing when you make a toy at home…my kids always get a kick out of that. Enjoy!

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