{Lifestyle Crafts} Cupcake Bunting

It’s been a hectic week.  Just one of those weeks where everyone needs to be in a different place dressed in a uniform (or some other kind of ‘special’ clothes) all on the same day at the same time.  So I made cupcakes.  And, because I like cute things, I made my cupcakes cute using my new goodies from Lifestyle Crafts.  These would work for really any occasion, like Cinco de Mayo, Mother’s Day, or, like today, just Friday.

 

Here are my goodies…

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I got to play with letterpress paper, the Quickstik (super love), and the new detailz dies in banners and flags.  The new detailz dies cut AND emboss at the same time.  They cut clean and the embossing is very pretty.  The paper is nice and thick and the embossing shows up well.  And the Quickstik…?  Well it’s genius.  You can use it to pick up tiny pieces (has a little sticky tip), place your items, and poke out the detailing on your dies.  Love it.  I can see lots of uses for this thing.  I even used it to thread the baker’s twine through the banners!

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Back to cupcakes.  First, let me say that I am a cupcake purist.  I like white cake and white icing.  Like wedding cake.  And you can’t beat wedding cake.  Second, a cupcake serving size is not one cupcake.  Please.  You need at least two.  So my cute cupcake bunting uses two cupcakes.  So you have to eat them both.

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Taaaa-daaaa!  Cute, right?  I used baker’s twine and long lollipop sticks.  I know they’re white, but I think you can see the embossing detail.  I just wanted to use that yummy paper.

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Perfect cuts.  And love how the die cuts the little slits for the string, too.  I used my Quickstik to thread those through.  I wanted to use the flag dies, too.  Especially the one with the embossed THANKS on it.  Very cute.  I can see this being used on bunches on things.  Quick, cute, and easy.  Just the way I like it.

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It’s a super sunny day (hallelujah!), so the pictures don’t so these dies justice.  Trust me…pretty, pretty, pretty.

As always, Lifestyle Crafts lets my readers have a 20% discount…just use the code LADY.  And there’s a linky on the sidebar.  I’m off to eat my cupcakes and celebrate Friday.

{holiday} Happy Valentine’s Day

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*NOTE* This is NOT a sponsored post.  I bought this little gadget because I wanted it…it was not given to me to try or blog about.

 

Last night seemed to be the perfect time to try out my new little gadget, the babycakes cake pop maker.  The perfect time because, first, I wait until the last minute to do stuff, and second, because I needed to make treats for the teacher luncheon at school today.  Ok, so I mixed up a regular chocolate cake mix and poured it into a big squeeze bottle I have.  *I think the squeeze bottle made it ten times easier*  I heated up the babycakes and filled each little pocket almost to the top.  It works kinda like a waffle iron.  If you get it too full it just runs out of the sides.  Trust me, I did this a few times and it didn’t seem to alter the cake pop in any way.  After about four and a half minutes cook time, I opened the machine to find 12 cute little perfectly baked chocolate cake balls.  Which, by the way, really do taste like chocolate cake.  Honestly I was afraid they might taste like Easy Bake Oven food…you know?  I popped them out and set them to cool on the handy dandy little pop tray that’s included.

Traditionally, I guess cake pops stand up on a stick with the pop at the top.  Cute, yes, but I would have had to find some sort of display to hold them and I was running out of time and energy…I decided to go with sitting pops.  I’ve had a set of 25 red and white paper straws from Hey YoYo for a while now.  I figured they would work as little handles for the pops.  Since I was serving to a large crowd, the handles also work well so that everyone is not touching all the food, kwim? I cut the straws in half (good straws, by the way) and dipped the ends in some melted chocolate wafers before I speared the cake pop.

I dipped the whole pop in the melted chocolate wafers and sprinkled them some cute mini hearts.  I added flags to just a few.

The teachers loved them and I spared a few for our dessert tonight.  Happy Valentine’s Day!

{FAIL} Maybe not such a good idea…

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Just to let you know that not every idea I have necessarily works out…

I bought candy corn and Hershey’s hugs to make these cuties for Halloween

from baking and creating with Avril via cake info and pinned to my board :)

Well, they never got made for Halloween.  But I thought I could maybe change them a bit and use them for Thanksgiving.  I thought the hugs could be bodies, the candy corn could be a beak, mini chocolate chips for eyes…just need something for the waddle (is that what it’s called?).  They could be TURKEYS!  At first I looked at jelly beans for the waddle, but too big I thought.  Then standing in the Walmart checkout I spotted Tic Tacs, in red.  I just knew it would work.

It did not.

Poor guys look kinda like wounded snowmen.

The kids still ate them :)

{Teacher Appreciation} Day 5…S’more Fun

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Wow!  This week really got away from me.  How is it Thursday already?  The teachers have been loving their goodies this week.  And I think I’ve taken the PTA position for Teacher Appreciation next year :)  At least I have an arsenal of good things to use!  Speaking of good teacher appreciation ideas…if you like my style, you will love Leigh.  Leigh one of my ‘in the computer’ friends.  She’s funny, sweet, and has just about the exact same likes and style that I do.  She’s been sharing her teacher appreciation ideas, too, over on her blog, It’s All Small Stuff.  Please go check it out, leave her some love, and tell her I sent you.  She has no idea I’m writing this, so it’ll be a surprise.  It’ll make her day.  Oh, did I mention she teaches?  She knows what teachers like :)

 

Ok, back to business.  Day 5 is a classic.  It is probably the absolute most popular thing on this little bloggy.  S’mores!

And it has a free printable!  Go check out the post from last year.

{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 3…TEA-riffic water bottles

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So, for Wednesday’s gift, we’re going with an oldie but a goodie…water bottles.  These were a huge hit last year.  They are super quick, easy, and a little something for the teacher to drink at lunch!

You can find all the directions and the printables in this post from last year.

{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!

{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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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

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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!

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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.

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