Thursday, December 30, 2010

New Year's Eve Treats for the Kiddos

 If you are like our family, New Years Eve isn't really celebrated with many adults.
We hunker down together.
We call my brother, who is lucky enough to have New Year's Eve be his birthday.
We have a fake count down to "midnight" for the adults and kids.

So at our house this year I am serving kid-friendly New Year's Eve treats for the kiddos.





I am pretty sure that the adults will be enjoying these "kiddos" treats too.
They whip out SUPER fast. 

Here is what you need:

lollypop sticks (varying sizes if you like)
mallows
white candy bark
sprinkles/mini chocolate chips
rice crispies (shhh...don't tell but I didn't even make mine, these were the lovely prepackaged ones in the shiny blue wrappers)

To assemble:

1.Cut up rice crispies into cubes and put on stick
2. Melt white chocolate
3. Put mallows on sticks, dip mallows into chocolate
4. Shake off excess chocolate, let it cool for like 30 seconds before dipping in your sprinkles/chocolate chips.
5. Put in fridge to set up faster
6. Set it out
7. Listen to your children chant "Mom is the best!" over and over.

Happy New Year's Eve

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas 2010

Our Christmas was all that was glorious. We spent it all snuggled in our home, warm and cozy with a blanket of snow outside. We held all of our favorite family traditions. Here is a photo recap of the ones I remembered to take pictures of.

Christmas Eve
yummers...sugar cookies for Santa...and some for us.

new jammies
letters to Santa


Christmas

We also enjoyed remembering the real reason for the season, our Savior's birth. We enjoyed time with our little family and enjoyed seeing our Little Men play so well and happily together. 

Now to another year...I can't believe it.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

How Does a Monster Say Merry Christmas?


With Monster Cookies of course! This year I did not make trays and trays and table-loads full of baked goods. I know the blaspheme! Truth be told I ran out of time in addition to having a desire to not have my pants size go up. So no excess baking going on here.

But in our house full of Little Monsters we decided to do one batch of Monster Cookies for a couple of people like next door neighbors and teachers, uh I mean teacher.

So before I sign off for the holidays I would like to share with you this scarily yummy monstrous recipe.

Monster Cookies 

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups peanut butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
3 eggs
2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon cornstarch
3/4 tsp vanilla
4 1/2 cups oatmeal
half a pkg of chocolate chips
8 oz of M&Ms

Preheat oven to 350. 

Cream together butter, peanut butter, and sugars.

Add eggs, baking soda, cornstarch, and vanilla until well mixed. Stir in oatmeal. Lastly add in chocolate chips and M&M's.

You can determine how monstrous you want your cookies. I scooped up large palm-fulls and then shaped them into cookie shapes. Cookies this large will yield about 10-12. If you want more cookies, cut down on the size...but not too much they are meant to be monster cookies after all. Your cookies will expand a little so make sure to leave room between the dough on your cookie sheet.

Let cool 15-20 minutes before removing from cookie sheet.

If you are giving them away, a perfect way to package them is individually in a brown lunch sack.

To make mine I cut off about 2" of the bottom and top. I then sewed the bottom edge closed with a zigzag stitch. Fold over the top, hole punch and tie closed with some festive ribbon. Perfect little cookie holder. Give away quickly for these cookies are a tad greasy and will spot the bag.


Try not to give all them away though.

Your Little Monster will probably really like one all to himself.

Caution: If not eaten in two sittings, author of post not responsible for the likely vomitfest that most likely will ensue at your house on your lovely carpet.

Merry Christmas 
from our house of 
Little Monsters
to yours.

Favorite Gifts: Games for the Fam

Around our house we love ourselves some family game time.





Hubby and I both grew up playing games. Now we have passed that addiction tradition on to our kiddos. On any given day we have at least two games sitting out. 

With this love of games, new games are a Christmas list staple. I thought I would share a list of some of our family's favorite games in case you are looking for any last minute gifts for your family.

Zingo


Don't Break the Ice


Guess What I am

Guess Who


Sorry
These are just a few of the family favorites. This post would have been WAY too long to list all our favs. This year for Christmas we will be adding a couple of new games that I am really excited for us to play as a family. 

What games do you like to play with your family? We are always in search for more games.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Teacher Christmas Gift


Right now I am lucky and only have one teacher to buy for. What this means is that I can go a little above what I would normally do. 

I have known for months that I was going to use Anna's GREAT tutorial for this gathered clutch, I heart her. I also knew that I wanted to toss in a pair of earrings from Just Enough Style her shop is closed temporarily due to holiday and new baby...CONGRATS.

With the left over scraps I sewed a little bag for the earrings.


I also added in a goodie...what present is complete without some kind of delicious treat?? We made monster cookies...recipe and packaging post will be on Thursday.


All together a delightful little thank you for Little Man's awesome teacher.


And her thank you to me...letting my kid out of school for the next 2 weeks.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Christmas Sunday Handsomeness


Yesterday I am pretty sure I had the handsomest Little Men around. Okay so I guess I am biased. But seriously have you seen anything cuter? 

Every Christmas I struggle to dress these rascals for Christmas Sunday. Mostly because I would have to take a loan out to dress all three of them. This year I decided I would make them all ties...remember you too can have one of my super dooper handmade ties... and just add them to clothes/shoes they already had. Aside from actually making the ties, it was the easiest Christmas outfitting I have done in awhile.

Easiest and the handsomest. The ties were a hit, the boys were a hit.

Ties and Christmas outfits aside...

I am sure grateful for my brood of Little Men. They make my heart the happiest. They are a complete and utter joy. I feel blessed and honored to be their mother. In this season of giving and gifts for sure one of the gifts I am most grateful for is to be their momma.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Little Man Winter Hat Tutorial


Every Little Man needs a rockin' hat to keep his head warm and toasty. Tired of the same old plain $1 beanie you find at The Mart? Sad because you don't know how/don't have the time to knit an awesome one yourself?

Well friend, this tutorial is for you.

Simply take yourself to The Mart or any other place that sells these for a buck or two.


Gather your fabric paint, freezer paper, old t-shirts,  and embroidery floss...


Decide what you want on your tough guy's hat. I picked a skull and a random number.

Trace those onto the paper side of freezer paper.


Cut out your shape with a razor blade/exacto knife. Then iron on your stencil where you would like it. Keep in mind to leave room at the bottom for your t shirt strips.


Paint. I use Tulip permanent fabric paint. Apply a couple of coats. Allow paint to sit for about 30 minutes. Remove stencil, carefully since your hat will stretch. Then let your hats dry for the recommended time (about 4 hours).


Cut strips from your t shirts, mine ranged from 1/2 to 1 inch.


Once your paint has dried. Pin and sew your strips on. To help the whole rough and tough look, use a variety of stitches and let it get a little wonky. As you sew, stretch your hat slightly so as to not loose the stretch of the knit. I also bought an adult sized for my boys, but their heads are huge. I would just recommend buying the hat a little big.


Continue to add rough touches by stitching on x's or straight stitches with coordinating embroidery floss. The more random the better. 




Now plunk it down on your Little Man's noggin'.





And you will find they can be cool and warm at the same time...hehehe.

Linking up here:

30 days: Pity Party
Kojo Designs: Fun Friday Finds
Fingerprints on the Fridge: Feature Yourself Friday
Creation Corner: Friday: Linky Party

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Santa Fe White Bean and Chicken Soup

First- I want to thank you guys for all the kind comments in the last couple of posts, especially my Little Man nap-tastrophe post. I know I don't say it enough, but I truly appreciate all of you for taking the time to read my little blog. The comments you leave literally make my day. Seriously you guys are right up there with chocolate and my Little Men's smiles.

Gushing out of the way, now on to the soup--



This is my FAVORITE soup. No really, I have eaten it four times in last week or so. It is super easy and fast to put together. Plus it is a crowd pleas-ah. 

2 tablespoons oil
1 med onion, chopped
4 oz chopped green chilies
3 tablespoons lime juice
2 1/2 cup chicken broth
2 15 oz cans great northern beans (do not drain)
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground coriander
2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground oregano
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoon corn starch
1 1/2 cups cooked chicken, chopped

Put oil in a stock pot and saute onions until tender. Stir in remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer 15-20 minutes. 

When ready to serve top with Monterey jack cheese, sour cream and fried tortilla strips.

To fry tortilla strips, cut up tortillas and heat up a small amount of oil in a shallow pan and lightly crisp.

Mmmmm...I am starting to regret that I ate the last of my soup for lunch...I could sure use a bowl. Yum.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Christmas-ifying Lamp Shades

Here is a little corner in my house all transformed for Christmas. Shhh...here is my secret...it took almost no money or effort to make this little nook all ready for the holidays.


I worked around some of the things I already had, like the family tree which lucky for me the color is part of my new Christmas color scheme. I added yarn balls, simply made by winding yarn around a styrofoam ball, to a container I already had. I wrapped a couple of presents in coordinating paper that I had already purchased (from Target). I have had the candy striped candles for ever.



But the very best part is the sparkle I added to the lampshades.

I bought this sequin trim at The Mart for $2.97. I adhered it in place, about 1/2 inch up from the bottom of the shade, with a non permanent tape. I used just shy of one spool for both lamp shades. Make sure that your ending point is in the back. In 2 minutes you are done!

You could do this process with almost any trim. Ribbon along the bottom would look great. Twill tape would look awesome. And how great would the fuzzy ball trim (yes that is the technical name for it) look around the bottom of the shade?


It really is so easy to just add little holiday touches here and there. Really for 3 bucks, why not? Your lamps will thank you. They like to dress up too.

Defeat in Under an Hour

TODAY-


This one does not like to nap.
I need him to nap.
He needs to nap.
I rocked him for 20.
Put him down.
He cried for 20.
I rocked him again.
He fell asleep.
Put him down.
He woke up.
I left the room.
He cried for 20 minutes.

In less than an hour, he won. I was defeated.


Another afternoon where nothing got done.
Sigh.

Homemade Present #2: Car Playmat


Car playmats are the perfect present for any little guy. They can be made almost entirely from scraps of whatever you have. I used a mixture of felt and fabric. Felt can simply be cut out and sew straight on...yay for that. Fabric does need to be "appliqued" on. That process can be as simple or as hard as you have time/motivation for. 

I used the freezer paper method. Then I also just used a simple stitch around the edges. If you have the mad skills and the time you can do something like THIS ah-mazing creation over at Homemade by Jill.

Your car mat can be as big or as small as you want. You can personalize buildings or favorite spots of your child.

My process:

I brainstormed what I wanted on my mat. I used a regular piece of fabric for the grass and a heavier upholstery fabric for the back. The roads were stenciled on with freezer paper and then painted on with permanent fabric paint. Like I said earlier the details were all done with a mixture of felt and fabric. 

It was a labor of love and it will take a couple of days, but it will be the highlight of any little man's Christmas.

Some of my favorites:

farmhouse with apple orchard


police station


park with swing set

gas station with car wash

Linking & Sharing at:

We Did it Wednesday: Sew Much Ado
Creative Share Wednesday: The Trendy Treehouse

Thursday, December 9, 2010

German Pancakes with Buttermilk Syrup


Growing up German pancakes was one of those meals that everyone liked. Hubbies family had a similar meal they called Sunday Supper. The pancake was the same. Similar memories. Different toppings. We knew this was a recipe we needed to use in our little family. I am not sure why we hadn't made this for our kids until now. I know the boys wondered the same thing as they devoured almost an entire 9x13 pan pretty much completely by themselves.

Oldest Little man alternated between using the delightful syrup and cherry pie filling. Middle Little Man opted just for the syrup. Littlest One...well lets just say he ate his plain with a bowl of cherries on the side (and on his face). My favorite was definitely drowning it in this lovely syrup.

This makes a great dinner or a great big breakfast. I promise you, it will get eaten.

German Pancakes with Buttermilk Syrup 

6 eggs
1 cup milk
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons melted butter

Place all the ingredients but melted butter in a blender. Blend until smooth. Pour melted butter in an ungreased 9x13 pan. Add batter. Bake uncovered at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.

SYRUP:

1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup butter
2 tablespoons corn syrup
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons vanilla

While pancake is baking, mix all of the syrup ingredients but vanilla in a large sauce pan. Stirring occasionally, bring to a boil. Let boil for 7 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in vanilla.


I hope you enjoy this family tradition. Top it however you like- pie filling, syrup, powdered sugar (or if you are weird like my husband sour cream).
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