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Thursday, October 31, 2013

And we wrap this Halloween ...

Several hot glue gun burns later and tons of hours on costume making I'm happy to put this day behind me.  NOT so sure I'll be doing the homemade costume again next year but knowing me I will forget about the pains and go for it again.

We did Wednesday night at the church, they had a huge event with jumpy things, trunk or treat, the High School Band played a few songs and even a costume contest.  If you may have guessed by now I go all out for events and may be a tad bit of a competitive in my nature.  YUP I'm so trying to work on this one!  I must say I was sad that we didn't win (ok a little peeved ... ok really peeved .. God so giving me a lesson to be humble).  We will just say a really cool box with duct tape won and some store bought witch costumes.  YUP I'm over it .. lol (yes I'm a work in progress).

Halloween night we headed up to my parents to visit with them and do the rounds then hit downtown where the shop owners give out candy.  I'm happy to be done with it and happy it will another year before I get some crazy idea to make costumes again ... lol.

Hope you all had a safe night!

Have a GREAT weekend!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Boo to you from our crew - Gooey Caramel Apple Monster Corn

Have I mentioned how much I love Blog Hops?  No really I do, OK I don't love that people don't stop by and say hi like they should or leave a comment when they do stop by (OK off my soap box). What I do love about them is finding amazing new things to make!  This Halloween I had a plan but then I came across some new things and of course had to try them out.  The only bad thing is this year being at public school vs private I have more kids to make for!

I found this really cool idea for Gooey Caramel Apple Monster Corn on I Dig Pinterest.  I had most of the items already on hand. I made a quick trip to the Dollar Tree for the Caramel Apple Taffy.  I should have picked up the gum drops like she had in her recipe but let's just say shopping at the Dollar Tree with the boys needs to be a get in and get out or I end up with a cart full of crap (I mean real crap some of those toys are just that!)

What you Need:
4 c. unpopped corn kernels or about 12 c. popped corn
2 1/4 c. brown sugar
1 c. karo syrup
1/2 c. butter
dash of salt
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
1 t. vanilla
1 pkg. (7.5 oz.) Caramel Apple Taffy (Dollar Tree - I used 2 bags)
Peanuts (I skipped)
sprinkles (I used on half of the batch)
gum drops (I forgot to pick up so skipped it)
Wilton Candy Eyes (I bought mine at Walmart, seen at Target & Micheals)
MM (I threw in a few orange and green)
Wilton Bags (Found on Clearance at Micheals 99cents for 15 bags)
Caramel Part:
Pop the corn.  Stir brown sugar, karo syrup, butter and salt in a sauce pan.  Bring to a boil and let boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.  Stir in sweetened condensed milk and vanilla. Bring to a boil.  
Add caption
Popcorn / Caramel Part:
Pour over popcorn and carefully incorporate so all popcorn is covered. Unwrap taffy and melt in a buttered saucepan over low heat, stirring frequently. Immediately drizzle over popcorn mixture.  Store in an air-tight container.

Hope you enjoy and give these a try!
Are you ready for Halloween Tonight?
I think I can say I'm ready!!

Thanks for Stopping by!
Don't forget to see the parties I link up to HERE.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Boo to you from our crew - Bleeding Brain Cake Balls

Now onto the treats!  I found these really cool Bleeding Brains featured on Kims Kandy Kreations.  I then went to Hungry Happenings to get the directions.  Thank you to you both for the amazing idea and how easy it was to put these together!!

1 baked chocolate cake 
1/4 - 1/2 cup vanilla frosting 
30-38 ounces melted white confectionery coating/candy melts 
cherry jelly, jam, preserves, or dessert sauce (3/4 teaspoon per brain) 
red food coloring (if you want to intensify the color or the cherry sauce)

Make Cake Balls:
Cut about 1/2" all around the edge of the cake and just enjoy a snack. Break up the center of the cake into a mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer (my preferred method**) or a food processor. Add 1/4 cup white frosting. Mix to combine.  If the mixture holds together well and you can easily form balls, then stop, if it crumbles, add up to another 1/4 cup frosting. Set aside.

Usually I make cake from scratch 
but every time I do cake balls it turns out better using the box mix.

Make the Brains:
Spoon some melted white candy coating into one of the brain mold cavities. Use a spoon or a pastry brush to paint the coating in a thin layer all around the inside of the mold. Be sure you can't see any of the mold through the white. Paint all four brain cavities in your mold.  Wipe off any candy coating around the edges of the mold. Freeze for 5 minutes.

Remove the molds from the freezer. If you want your cherry filling to be brighter red, add a few drops of red food coloring. Spoon 3/4 teaspoon of the cherry filling into each brain cavity. Scoop out about 2 tablespoons of the cake ball mixture and press it into a brain cavity leaving enough room to add a layer of candy coating on top.

Spoon some more white candy coating on top of each cake ball and smooth it out. Be sure to wipe off any excess coating around the edge of the mold. Freeze for 5 minutes. Remove the cake ball brains from freezer, turn mold upside down, press and pull on the mold until your brains pop out.

ALEXIS NOTES: I used strawberry jam but I think sundae topping would be better not as thick!  I ordered my brain mold off Amazon.  I ended up using 3 bags of white Wilton's Candy Melts and one cake mix made around 24 brains.  I then found these super cute Dracula holders at the Dollar Tree.

Hope you enjoy and give these a try!
Are you ready for Halloween?
I still have treats to make for Caden's Class tonight!

Thanks for Stopping by!
Don't forget to see the parties I link up to HERE.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Boo to you from our crew - Peek A Boo Frankie & Ghost Cards

Thanks to blog hops I saw these two cute cards I had to make for the boys.  Of course they are more time consuming and when you now go to public our class size for each boy has grown like crazy.  

First off I made the Peek A Boo Frankie found on Crafty Journal.  It was a simple card to make, she used foam.  I decided on card stock since I could make the template and then copy onto the card stock using my printer/copier.  I'm all about the easiest way when doing a mass production of something. Both cases she showed a picture of her template but not the actual template.  So I copied her picture put it into a word doc and then scaled it, made a copy and then took a blank piece of paper to make a template with out the dimensions so it could easily printed onto the cardstock.  Here is where my Templates are stored let me know if it gives you grief.

What you Need:
Black Card Stock
Green Card Stock
White Sharpie or Pencil
3/4 Inch Brad
Wiggly Eyes
Paper Punch

I printed the tombs first onto the black, then the heads onto green.  I cut each of them out. For the head I cut some hair out of black paper. Added the eyes, drew a crazy mouth, some bolts on the side of the head and the stitches to the neck.  You can get creative her with scar's etc.  I found I bought the Medium Brad which fell threw the hole when I tried to use the hole punch!  Be careful when you are buying to make sure they are big enough to hold the 3 pieces together.

Then I made the Peek A Boo Ghost found also on Crafty Journal. Another simple card that she used foam, but I made with card stock to make it easy to print template onto the paper to help with time.  Forgive me the pumpkin template has the writing on it, due to the clean version my oldest decided to color on before I could scan it, but the rest is done for you, here in my Templates.

What you Need:
Orange Card Stock
White Card Stock
Brown Card Stock
Black Sharpie
3/4 inch Brad
Paper Punch
Wiggly Eyes (optional - Caden Vito them .. lol)

I printed the stems onto brown paper, the ghost on white an the pumpkins on orange.  I cute each of them out.  Since my template I used had the Ghost eyes and mouth they were all set nothing more to do.  The pumpkins I did take a brown colored pencil to add some shading for the grooves in a pumpkin.  AGAIN be careful when buying the the brad, I bought a medium that fell threw my hole punch hole, had to make a small hole then insert!  I punched a hole in the 3 and added a bronze brad to blend with the orange.  I glued the stem on to the right side and let the overhang go behind when the left closes up.

They are super cute, a little time consuming but so worth it to hopefully brighten a kids day :).

Are you ready for Halloween?
I still have some treats to make tonight!

Thanks for Stopping by!
Don't forget to see the parties I link up to HERE.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Boo to you from our crew - DYI Minion Costumes Made

When they say it takes a village to raise a child it took a village to make these costumes.  Let's just start up front I'm not a sewer.  I can rock a hot glue like no tomorrow, but a sewing machine kind of scare's me!  I put a SOS out of FB and a friend let me borrow her mom's sewing machine (a great machine that is 30+ yrs old and had only been used 2 or so times).  Then the amazing Stacy from Stacy Uncorked came over at 7p to help me sew pants.  NOW my job was to measure said pants!  WELL let's just go back to the statement above I'm not a sewer.  So the pants came out great just way too large!  So SOS #2 on FB and another amazing friend (who mind you is a friend of a friend) that stepped up over and beyond came to my house to help me figure out what I did to the machine that was now not working.  Well it didn't work so in the cars we went and went to her house.  She set me up in front of her machine (YUP you read that correct I sewed).  I fixed the pants and even sewed on the straps for the overalls!  I ended up staying up until Midnight Saturday night but they came out pretty awesome!

I first saw this awesome idea for Homemade Minions on The Home Place.  She did an awesome job and her's came out awesome.  I'm going to break down her steps for us that are sewing challenged and need the extra steps (ok the Dummies Guide to Minions).

Here are the costumes done.
I'll come back Wednesday when we go to the church party and kids all done up.

What you Need (This is what I needed for 2 minions adjust on the # you make):
2 Rolls of 1 inch foam (I used 2 rolls for 2 minions)
Bright yellow spray paint
Bright purple spray paint (Cole wanted to be the evil minion ... go figure)
1 packages of black pipe cleaners (cut half)

1 Purple Feather Boa
2 Pkgs Velcro (self adhesive - but still hot glued it down)
Hot glue gun
1 bag Hot glue sticks (I used close to 40 or 50 of the small sticks)
1 Round cardboard container (Oatmeal Carton - Worked perfect)
2 Sheets black felt
Sewing Machine
Thread (Blue, Yellow, Purple and Black - or be lazy like me and use one color)
3 yards Blue Fleece
1/2 yard Yellow Fleece
1/2 Yard Purple Fleece

1/2 Yard Black Fleece

Wrap Foam around each child to see how much you will need.  I found that I needed a roll per kid and then had left over that couldn't be used (I so was hoping one roll would be enough since it was like $16 a roll but no go).  You can be professional and make a line with a pencil and then cut, or be like me wrap then with your finger place where it needs to be cut and then cut it.  OK this is where the inexperience sewer came into place, she said make 7 points (I thought this was some trick NOT make 7 triangle cuts).  If you ONLY make 7 triangles that will make it easier to close the top of the head up.  MINE was a little hard, thanks to Rick and a can of spray glue.

I took my minions outside and sprayed them down in the driveway.  I found one can did the job but if I wanted to be picky it could have used another good coating if I bought another can of paint.  I left them outside for a half hour or so to make sure they were dry.

The side seam glue down about 5 inches and then add your Velcro.  I ended up hot gluing the Velcro to the foam to make sure it stayed in place (the self adhesive didn't hold very well).  Take the oatmeal container and cut into a round circle that will be for the eye to keep it sturdy.  I had the kids put the minions on with a pen I had them mark where their nose was (for the center of my circle for the eye) and then I marked where there shoulders hit.  I then had them take it off, I took the oatmeal circle and made it a stencil and cut it out.  I used my circle cookie cutters to cut the arm holes out.

I took the fleece and place a long sleeve shirt of the boys as a point of reference and added a little length and width. I should have made them come in instead of one long tube but I wasn't into perfect I just wanted to get this done .. lol.  NOW I should have taken the same concept with the pants I tried to eyeball it with taking the fleece going around half the foam body and then finding the inseam.  Let's just say this didn't work in my favor the pants became HUGE and I had to do an emergency take them in moment.  Take some pants for the child and then add a little to the length and more for the width place on foam to make sure they will fit over the foam but not fall off either (like mine did).  I made a traditional overall, with a little square for the front and then added two strips for the straps (I folded mine over so they were a little thicker and padded).  For the logo I made a circle out of the black felt and then for the G I went online printed out the G and cut it out of yellow fleece.  I then hot glued the black circle down and then the G in the center.  I hot glued the sleeves into the arm holes.

For the Yellow Minion I took Black pipe cleaners I cut in half then hot glued them to the top, sticking straight up.  For the Purple Minion I took a purple feather boa I found at the dollar store and hot glued it down.  She had a hole on the top of her head, but with Rick on the head duty he glued that whole thing down!  But it worked just fine hot gluing to the foam.

To finish up I cut a long strip of black fleece to line the inside of the eye.  I hot glued the down and tried to make it so it was smooth (but it was me so it's a make it work moment).  I cut a longer strip of black fleece to fit around the foam head to be strap of the eye hole.

I must say this costume was so much more money then running to the drug store and picking one up.  Half way through it I wanted to give up and so glad I didn't because they turned out so cute!

You may end up with a little paint on you .. lol

And don't let a child distract you!
Oh yes a HOT Glue Gun Burn ... OUCH

So what do you think??

Thanks for Stopping by!
Don't forget to see the parties I link up to HERE.

I fun quote that I had to share, so perfect for this!

Clothes make a statement.  
Costumes tell a story.  
~Mason Cooley


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Weekend to Finish the Costume

I had such good intentions of getting the boys costumes done a few weeks ago, but a trip to Boston and work well let's just say it didn't happen.  Well this project that I started on sounded like such an easy thing.  As most of the projects that I go in with that attitude it turns out to be a lot of work.  BUT since I already bought all the items and to come to find out that this costume is costing me about $40 (or a little more) per kid ... lol it may not have been my best idea!  BUT at least it hopefully will be a lot cooler then a drug store one I would pick up.

Thanks to an amazing new friend (well not knew in the since of I haven't been talking to her for years over blogs), but new in real life.  Stacy over at Stacy Uncorked was so very kind and came to my house at 7p last night to help me sew these costumes.  

Bless her, we had our new Hip Hop Class for the boys at the YMCA,then Cole's tutor was at the house until 7p.  I got to work cutting out the fabric and making the top part of the costume.  Mind you I'm not a person who sew's, so I mis-read the directions on how to make the top and had a little bit of a emotional break down.  Between Stacy and my husband Rick I think it is coming together rather nicely!

So my weekend will be fixing and completing our Minion's.  One yellow and one purple! Wish me luck!

I may have sprayed my hand and even burned a finger .. ugh

Minion coming together

Stacy Sewing

Pants coming together.
Needs the overall straps and the Logo

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Recap of Football Treats Made

We have been very busy at work and then after work between the tutor for Cole and the YMCA activities I'm running around crazy.  BUT loving it!  I'm getting exercise, so are the boys and the tutor is helping Cole keep on track with his homework. 

So with little time to write up something whitty and clever I'm going to recap the football treats I've made so far :).  I did find out that there is one more game but yet again practices where cancelled this week (pointless).  And the coach that is never at games that has a teen step in and coach never puts Cole in just uses the top 5 kids every game over and over again.  YUP I'm done and I think so is Cole.  So we're going with no last game, just be done with it.  PLUS Saturday I have the boys signed up at the YMCA for swim and a tumbling class.

Football Cream Puffs

Hope you enjoyed our fun Football Treats!
And maybe try one or two :)

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Ready for a Touch Down ... Football Mini Cream Pies

And we finish our Football themed treats with a yummy one.  I found the idea for Football Mini Cream Pies on Bubbly Nature Creations.  Now I've made cream puff's before when I made the Cream Puff Bunnies, but this was another game scheduled for 11am and I work until 9am on Saturdays.  Knowing my time would be stretched, plus poor Caden had been throwing up the previous days I went with the Semi-Homemade way thank you Sandra Lee for letting us know that is an ok way to go sometimes!

So I started with a simple Mini Cream Puff recipe on Kraft's Website

For Cream Puff:

What you need

pkg.  (2-layer size) yellow cake mix

pkg.  (3.4 oz.) JELL-O Vanilla Flavor Instant Pudding

cup  cold milk

cups  thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, divided

pkg.  (4 oz.) BAKER'S Semi-Sweet Chocolate

make it

HEAT oven to 350ºF.
PREPARE cake batter and bake as directed on package for 24 cupcakes. Cool completely.
BEAT pudding mix and milk with whisk 2 min. Let stand 5 min. Meanwhile, use serrated knife to cut cupcakes horizontally in half. Whisk 1/2 cup COOL WHIP into pudding; spoon onto bottom halves of cupcakes, using about 1 Tbsp. for each. Cover with cupcake tops.
MICROWAVE remaining COOL WHIP and chocolate in small microwaveable bowl on HIGH 1-1/2 min. or until chocolate is almost melted, stirring after 1 min. Stir until blended. Let stand 15 min.; spread onto cupcakes. Refrigerate 15 min.

For Football Themed Cream Puff:

With a piping tip or a ziplock bag cut at the end pipe lines on the top to look like a football.

ALEXIS Notes: I used Wilton White Frosting, added a tip and decorated.

Another simple one to make!

Don't forget to see the parties I link up to HERE.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Ready for a Touch Down .... Football Helmet Men (or to be PC I should say People right?? LOL)

Next on our list is some super cute Football Helmet men/people (LOL I'm so not a good PC person).  These Cute little Helmet Men I found on Spoonful (one of my favorite places to go for ideas).  For their men they used pre-made cookies, Most of you know me and know I rather just make my own.  So I found a yummy recipe for Knockoff Swig Sugar Cookies (aka literally the best cookie known to man) on Vintage Revivals site.   Those where their words but I did take a taste and they are pretty darn good.  Since I'm at a standstill with my diet I've decided I'm going to eat right with some little pleasures and keep on exercising and see what happens (1 1/2 years on this diet and I need a break ... ok enough about me). 

Here are the men I made 
(I ran out of red Wilton Icing Color used Maroon so it was a little on pink side):

For Cookies:
1 C Butter (room temperature)
3/4 C Vegetable Oil
1 1/4 C Sugar
3/4 C Powdered Sugar
2 T Water
2 Eggs
1/2 t Baking Soda
1/2 t Cream of Tarter
1 t Salt
5 1/2 C Flour
Cream together Butter, Vegetable Oil, Sugars, Water, and Eggs. Combine dry ingredients and slowly add to butter mixture. Mix until everything is combined.  Your dough should be a little crumbly and not sticky at all.  Roll a golf ball sized ball of dough and place it on your cookie sheet.  Put 1/4 c of sugar and a pinch of salt in a dish (this is in addition to the sugar and salt listed above.)  Stick the bottom of a glass in it.  This is going to be your cookie press. Firmly press it into the center of your dough ball.  You want your dough to spill out over the sides of the glass.  If there is a lip its even better.  Bake at 350 for 8 minutes.  They should just barely be browning on the bottom.    Move cookies to a cooling rack.  Once they are cool put them in the fridge.

Alexis Notes: Instead of rolling into balls.  I rolled my dough out and then used my circle cutter to make sure all the men where the same size and shape.  For the top part the helmet I took a knife and cut out a square where the face would show through (see picture below to see shape, this was the only part that wasn't uniformed in shape, since I free handed each one). 

 For Men:

What you'll need

  • Large, soft cookies (we used Archway oatmeal cookies)
  • Frosting
  • Food coloring
  • M&M's Minis
  • Black decorator gel
  • Black licorice

How to make it

To make each one, first spread a thin layer of frosting on a large, soft cookie. Cut a square from a second cookie to create a helmet shape and set it atop the first.

Coat the helmet with frosting tinted the color of your family's favorite team, then add eyes (M&M's Minis with black decorators' gel dots), a black string licorice face mask, and 2 more M&M's Minis for the helmet's ear holes.

Alexis Notes: As mentioned above I made the cookies instead of pre-made ones. I used Wilton Icing Color tried my red didn't have enough so I used my maroon and got pink oh well! I used black icing gel for eyes and cut strips of Wilton licorice for the face mask.  I skipped the helmet ear holes.

Another simple one to make!

Don't forget to see the parties I link up to HERE.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Ready for a Touch Down ... Brownie Football's

I finish my football creations this week with 3 new creations that I made for Cole's Flag Football team.  We wrapped this past Saturday with our last game of the season.  Things we have learned:  Don't take Flag Football through boys and girls club.  A great place but since run by volunteers that is what you get no real coach and no coach that can show up to games. $70 is a lot to pay when there is no organization and you don't get to keep the jersey like you were told.  Plus they cancel every time it rains ... news flash we live in Washington it's going to rain suck it up and play in the rain! Ok enough on this, onto the recipe!

This was a simple one, I used a box mix which is usually no go in my house but I just returned from my business trip a few days before and was burned out so easy was the way I went.  Along with the game was at 10am and I work until 9am on Saturdays, so give me a break ... lol.

I found this recipe on for Touch Down Brownies on Betty Crocker's Website so of course that is why you see the use of a box mix.  The say to use Betty Crocker Icing, but I stick with my Wilton Icing.

What you Need:
box (1 lb 2.4 oz) Betty Crocker® Original Supreme Premium brownie mix
cup water
cup vegetable oil
Wilton White Icing Tube
  1. Heat oven to 350°F (325°F for dark or nonstick pan). Line 9-inch square pan with foil, letting foil hang 2 inches over sides of pan. Spray foil with cooking spray.
  2. In medium bowl, stir brownie mix, chocolate syrup, oil, water and eggs until well blended. Spread in pan.
  3. Bake 34 to 37 minutes or until toothpick inserted 2 inches from side of pan comes out almost clean. Cool completely, about 1 1/2 hours.
  4. Using foil to lift, remove brownies from pan. With football-shaped cookie cutter, cut brownies into football shapes. Pipe on decorating icing to look like football laces.
Alexis Tips: I used Wilton's Pan Release and they just popped out (love this stuff see pic).  I was able to get 10 footballs per pan.  I used my Wilton Piping tip that goes on their tube and piped on the laces.  

Another simple one to make!

Don't forget to see the parties I link up to HERE.

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