{Teacher Appreciation} Day 4…Candy Bar Box

I’m sorry, but anytime anyone wants to give me chocolate, I will take it.  I kinda think your kiddo’s teacher might just feel the same way.  It’s like a’Friday afternoon after the buses leave’ in bar form.

Today’s download works just a bit differently.  This little candy bar box was made by me…I thunk and made it :)  It’s a template product in my digital shop.  Meaning…if you digital scrap, you can make it into whatever you want it to be.  So, I can’t really give it away.  See?  BUT I can make it a ready to use printable and put it in my Etsy store.  What do you think?  It’s cuuuuuuute {sing-songy voice} and you’re gonna liiiiiiiike it ! {again with the singy voice}  It’s yours to use and print once…or a thousand times.  Use it for teacher appreciation, end of school, first day…the list goes on.  You just can’t sell it.  :) Continue reading for the details.

and it magically, exactly fits a standard size Hershey bar!

This will come to you as a 2 page pdf file.  The first page is the printable and the second is a full photo how-to sheet…it shows how to put it together.  You will need cardstock, scissors, glue (a glue stick would be just fine), and maybe some ribbon.  The directions will tell you to score the lines.  It has little dotted lines where you need to fold.  Scoring those lines just makes it easier to fold and look a little nicer.  I have a scoring thingy.  If you don’t, no biggie.  Just use a ruler and the back of a butter knife (not the blade, just turn it over).  It will make a nice little indention to fold, but not cut the paper.

Thanks so much, too, for all the encouraging words and nice comments.  I really do appreciate them! And please know that I would love to personalize each printable for everyone, but my children like to eat and have their Mom around…I just don’t have the time!

 

{Teacher Appreciation} Day 2…for some POP!ular teachers

Last year’s collaboration with Bridget from Bake@350 has been one of my most popular {ha!} posts.  She made the most adorable cookies ever.  We bagged them up with a cute treat topper and they were wildly popular {there it is again, I swear I’m not trying}.  It certainly helped that we were basically neighbors and we met to put the bags together.  You can read all about it here.

I am a big Bridget fan.  I’ve been reading and drooling over her blog for a long time.  And while I consider myself fairly crafty and a bit of a foodie, I have never tackled cookies.  Well, does Toll House break and bake count?  Anyway, although we have since moved and I am no longer close to Bridget, boo hoo, I decided I could still do a popular gift for our teachers this year in keeping with the theme from last year.

Not long ago, Bridget did a post about some candied popcorn she made.  She found the recipe from another super blogger, Kellie from This Blessed Nest. At the end, a comment was made about how you really could make this popcorn for any occasion….ding! ding! ding!  idea.

I followed Kellie’s instructions.  I used that microwave popcorn she did…by the way, it’s really yummy.  I used plain vanilla candy melts {you can find those at Walmart now for those of you, like me, who live in small towns} and regular M&Ms.  I did take out {ahem, devour} the brown M&Ms…just because I didn’t feel they went with my color scheme.  Call me picky.  I bagged it up and tied the bags with ribbon and this cute little tag I made.  And guess what?  I made some tags for you, too.  You can download them here. As always, they are in pdf format, so all you have to do is open and print.  You do have to have the free Adobe Reader, but you probably already have it on your computer.

Um…this stuff is delicious.  Seriously.  I’m surprised it made it into bags for the teachers.

 

 

 

{The Big Dip} Fish {on a} Stick

I’ve been working on some printables for little fishy party.  I’ve been trying to come up with some tasty little party treats.  You know, so I can try them out.  And taste as many as needed to assure good quality control.  I wouldn’t want to recommend something I wouldn’t eat {several of} myself.  I decided to go with an old favorite…dipped Oreos on a stick.  I’ve done them before (there’s even some how-to pics). They are easy and yummy.

That’s an Oreo with a rice cereal treat ‘lip’ on the fishbowl dipped in candy melts.  The little fishies are candy melts that I piped on wax paper and then attached after they dried.  Quick, easy, and cheap…my three requirements!  How could you not love a cookie on a stick dipped in candy??

I can’t wait to show you the printables that match…coming soon!

{Brown Baggin’ It} Tied with a tag and a FREEBIE!

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I’m starting a new little series called ‘It’s in the Bag.’  I have always been a fan of the paper bag.  Weird, I know.  But they’re cheap, easy to find, and there are so many different things you can do with them!  So this little series will focus on how to make brown paper bags pretty.

Tied Up with a Tag

I found these adorable leopard print brown bags at JetJewels’ etsy shop.  I’m a leopard fan.  And I especially like leopard with red.  So with Valentine’s Day around the corner, I decided to pretty up these bags Valentine style.  I filled each 5×7 leopard bag with a couple of homemade cookies.

wild1Then I printed these labels {scroll down for the freebie download}.  Then I used a 3 inch scalloped circle punch to cut them out.  I’ve also made them so that a 2 1/2 inch circle punch will work as well.  I folded the bag down, lined up the tag, and punched two holes through both.  I used a piece of 7/8 inch ribbon to tie the bag up.  For a quick how-to on weaving the ribbon to make it look like it’s tied…

longpicpreview1.  Pull the ribbon through the front of the front so that each end is in the back.  Even up the ends.

2.  Take one of the ends and weave it back through the opposite hole from where it came.  Pull through to the front.

3.  Do the same with the other end.

4.  Fluff the ‘bow’ and cut the ends.

5.  To prevent the ribbon ends from fraying, visit my little tip video.

Wanna make your own?  I’ve made up some tags to share!  You can download your FREE tags here.  The picture below is linked, too.  It’s a PDF file, so you won’t need any special software.  You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader {which you probably already have}.  Just download, open, and print.

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{In a Jar} Little Pies in a Jar with a FREEBIE!

I have been wanting to try this ever since I first saw it over on Our Best Bites in September.

I finally did it.

First, let me say that I wish I was the kind of baker that loved to bake from scratch.  I really admire those people.  To make a pie crust from scratch would be delicious.  I just don’t have that kind of patience.  Granted, I did want to make the pie filling with Honey Crisp apples.  The absolute best apples on the planet.  However, the grocery store didn’t have them yesterday and by golly, I wanted pie, so canned pie filling it is.  I found these half-pint jelly jars at Walmart and snatched them up…each cute little jar is 4 ounces. {love these jars!}

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I followed the steps set out by Our Best Bites.  I went the easy way and used a ready made pie crust and canned pie filling.  {Now the box of pie crusts come with two crusts, a top and a bottom.  I only used one and it made four little pies.} I let the pie crust sit for about 5 minutes before I rolled it out on wax paper.  Using the tops of the jars, I cut circles for the pie tops.

pie2Then using little pieces of crust that I tore off, I pressed the pie crust on the bottom and sides of the jar. {I didn’t grease them}

pie3I used about 1/3 cup of pie filling for each little jar.

pie4I took a little heart cookie cutter I had {from a Wilton set…butterfly, scalloped heart, flower, etc} to cut a heart out of the top.  I pinched the tops into the jars.  I would have loved to do the beautiful little fork trick to seal the edges…I tried it and it didn’t work for me.  Maybe there’s a trick.  I was just hankerin’ for some pie, so I pinched the edges in and let it be.

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I put the heart I cut out back on top, offset a bit so the pie could breathe and bubble.  Then I brushed the top with melted butter and sprinkled it with sugar, per the suggestion.  I put tops of two of them and popped them in the freezer.  The other two I put on a baking sheet in a 375 degree oven.  They baked for about 40 minutes.

pie6I shared the other two today with a friend.  I tied the rim with ribbon and used a 2 inch scalloped punch to cut out these cute little tags that just happen to have the directions on them.

pie8pie7I thought some of you might like the labels, so I made some up to share!  You can download the labels here! The picture is also linked.  It’s a PDF file, so no special software is needed.  You’ll need Adobe Acrobat Reader {which you probably have already}.  Just download, open, and print.

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Frozen Hot Chocolate

We are a Texas family living in Maryland.  Brrr.  Add to the fact that Maryland actually gets cold.  Really cold.  And snowy.  Real snow.  So far, the kids have had at least 6 snow days and several delayed days.  I’m getting used to the 5:30 am automated phone call from the school district…and running out of fun ideas to keep the kids in check.  So, I came up with frozen hot chocolate.  I’m sure it’s been done before.  This is our version.  I’m not out to reinvent the wheel, just pt my spin on it!

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I made hot chocolate in mugs using mix we had in the pantry.  {This was before we got our Keurig machine…would have totally used it!}  Once mixed, wait for the hot chocolate to cool completely.  When it’s cooled, stir again (the chocolate will settle).  Then, pour into a freezable container. I used a silicone brownie pop mold I found at the craft store in the baking section.  I filled the mold and put it in the freezer.

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After two hours or so, I brought the mold out and inserted sticks for holding.  I used lollipop/cookie sticks I picked up at the craft store, but popsicle sticks and even straws would work just as well.  Place the mold back in the freezer overnight. The hardest part of this fun treat is waiting for the hot chocolate to freeze!  When you are ready to eat the pops, dip just the bottom of the mold in a sink of hot water for just a second or two.  The hot chocolate should pop right out!

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Fun variations to try…

Use plastic popsicle makers, a silicone muffin pan, or an ice tray to make your pops

Use the hot chocolate ice cubes to cool down hot cocoa

Add crushed peppermint or mini marshmallows to the mix for a fun surprise

12 Days Blog Hop: Day 11, A FREEBIE!

I can’t believe it’s almost over :(  We’ve had the best time bringing you lots of wonderfully cute, easy, and inexpensive ideas for the holidays.  Today is no exception!

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I love a treat topper.  ANYTHING looks delightful when wrapped up in some cute little paper :)  For today I’ve made you a holiday treat tent.  {I used our delightfully humongous Grab Bag, that is still available at an amazing price until December 13th}  It’s designed to hold a snack sized zipper bag.  Simply print, cut, and fold where the patterned paper changes.  Insert your candy-filled baggie, fold over the top, and punch holes through.  Tie with some cute ribbon.  Easy peasy.  I also used a punch to scallop the edges.

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I even put a little place on the back so that you can make sure they know who it’s from!

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I filled my treat tent with Hershey Kisses, but just about anything would be cute.

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And since I love you sooooo much…I’m giving it to ya as a FREEBIE!!  This free printable comes as a pdf file, so no special software is needed; you’ll just need Adobe Reader, which most of us have already.  You can grab the FREE DOWNLOAD HERE

enJOYfreebieHere are some other ideas for filling your zipper bag…

dry hot cocoa mix and directions

mini marshmallows (snowman poop!)

Chex mix…you know, Santa always ‘chex’ his list twice!

any kind of candy…who doesn’t love candy?

peppermint bark

Coming up tomorrow…Pam’s Question Jar.

Backpack Snack

It’s almost that time again.  New shoes, new backpacks, new pencils.  Some days I think I’m ready and other days, I’m not.  Today, though, is a ready day!

I thought it would be fun to make up some fun trail mix mimicking the new school supplies we’re all gathering now.  I walked the aisles of my favorite grocery store and here’s what I came up with…

Oreo Snack Chips…blackboards

Marshmallows…chalk

Pretzel sticks…pencils

Red fruit snacks…apples

Pink Starburst…erasers

backpacksnack-web

I unwrapped all of the individual pieces and mixed in a large bowl.  I cut each large marshmallow into fourths long ways.  After it was mixed, I used a large scoop to put the mix into snack sized zip bags.  I did try to evenly distribute the marshmallows and pink candies.

The topper is one I made just for this occasion and is available as a free download.  It fits a standard sandwich and/or snack sized zip bag. You can find the free printable treat topper HERE. Simply download, print, cut, fold in half, and staple over a zip bag.  I did one with the poem and one blank.  Can you read upside down?  :)  It reads… I’ve got my backpack, my pencils, I’m looking cool.  It’s time to go…I’m ready for school!

backpacksnackad

With a little help from my assistants (the kiddos), I plan to mix up some snack mix, attach the toppers and use it as a little treat for the neighborhood kids before school starts.  It’s a quick and inexpensive way to celebrate the beginning of a new school year.

For a TEA-riffic teacher…another FREEBIE!

I’ve got another cute teacher appreciation goodie for you.  I love this one for its simplicity.  Who wouldn’t like a refreshing tea in the middle of the afternoon?  I simply took these bands of printed cardstock, wrapped them around a regular ol’ water bottle, and tied a little individual powered drink pack on the top.  I, of course, chose a tea-flavored drink to match my cheesy saying :)

tearifficteacherWhat?  Of course I’ll share! (snicker)

You can get your free downloadable pdf file HERE or by clicking the picture below.

**UPDATE** there is also a FREE ‘Staff’ printable, too…HERE

tearifficdownloadpreviewI’d love to know if and how you used it!  Leave me a comment!

Oh, and Leigh is doing a teacher appreciation project everyday this week.  Major cuteness.

Gumballs!

Just a short little post.  I’ve seen two of the cutest ideas for gumballs lately and wanted to share.  First up is Leigh.  I LOVE Leigh’s work.  Everything she does is super cute, clever, thoughtful, and easy.  Check out these cute teacher appreciation gumballs

DSC07511Leigh has LOTS of other cute ideas, so head over there and looky.  And leave her some lovey comments while you’re there. (tell her Mel sent ya!)

Next, are these adorable little mini gumball machine cupcakes from cookies and cups.  She shows a step by step on how to create them and they don’t look hard at all!  Seriously thinking about trying these :)

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