Sunday, October 30, 2011


i was going to save this for november, but since we are only a couple days away and since i've already worn it quite a few's time to share!!  i saw the inspiration scarf on pinterest.  when i took a closer look, i realized the scarf was crocheted, which is fine, i know how to crochet.  but, i didn't have the right sized hook or the yarn or the money to buy those things, even though they are relatively cheap.  i was soooo sad.  but upon further contemplation, a second realization came to light:  i don't like yarn around my neck, it's itchy. but i do like jersey...which i have plenty of!! i just needed a little bit of quilt batting, not a lot, but just enough to keep me warm, and i could make my own version of this cute scarf!!  thanks to my hoarding all things crafty tendencies, i found everything i needed in one of my many fabric/craft boxes!!  i got to work!

this is the original scarf that i love!!

and here's how i made my version of this scarf:

i grabbed a piece of jersey fabric that was lyin' around.  it was 23" long, 9" wide on one end and 7" wide on the other end. (the bigger end is where the button holes go) i found a piece of leftover quilt batting that was just slightly smaller.  ok, so i did two scarves.  one is blue and one is gray.  the blue one i did with unfinished edges, meaning i sewed the scarf wrong sides together.  i like the way the jersey rolls up around the edges.  the gray one is the opposite, sewn right sides together then turned right side out.  i like the gray one better.  it goes with everything. 

then i pinned my fabric and batting together.  sewed it up good with two rows of stitches.

now it's time for the button holes.  i have a very random assortment of buttons collected by my grandmother (?) possibly my mother and a dead lady that was having a garage sale.  i chose 3 that were similar but not the same and marked their sizes onto my scarf.  i marked top, bottom, and sides so i would know where to do my button holes.
next, i cut open my button holes and slid the buttons through a few times to make sure they fit snugly.
then, i wrapped the scarf around my neck and marked through the button holes with a pen, where my buttons would be sewn. (no picture, sorry)  i sewed on the buttons and there i was, with a new scarf!

and there you have it.  i'm not very good at explaining leave a comment if you need me to clarify anything!!
p.s. i only have 1 more book to go in the soul screamers series...i seriously like.  super fast read, intense and i believe there are two more that haven't come out yet...yes i have a reading addiction.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Fall Wreath

For the past month I have been working on this wreath I saw on etsy. The wreath on etsy was WAY to expensive so I thought I could make it. One wired wreath, 2 yards of orange burlap, more hot glue than I have ever used in my life, a little ribbon, and one month later, my wreath is F I N A L L Y done.

If you have the time and want to know how this beautiful wreath is done, here is what you need........
Here is what you'll do.............

I love this as a fall wreath! But you can do it in whatever color you would like. I think it would also be cute in other fabrics. We'll see if I want to take this road again with a different fabric................ ;)


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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

gathered pillows!!!

we desperately needed a new fitted sheet for our bed.  our other sheet was ripped and didn't fit our bed.  every morning we had to put the sheet back on.  annoying.  so finally, we purchased one through amazon, which actually came from target.  we chose a set that was gray jersey and included fitted and flat sheets and 2 king sized pillow cases.  we don't ever use the flat sheet, so i was excited to make stuff with it.  i have made many, many things so far.  here is the first project of many made from the king sized flat sheet.  gathered pillows!!! yay!!

i am so not big on measuring.  i don't know why it frustrates me. but it does.  i put my pillow that was getting new clothes over my straightened sheet and cut to around the right size.  i doubled the length for the gathering, and the back is not gathered.  the back also opens in the middle, and for that i used the finished sides of the sheet, one less step i had to do!!

 i sewed along the top and bottom of my cut sheet with a wide stitch, then pulled one thread at the end and gathered it as much as i needed.
 my stitch broke though, i pulled too hard, hence the pins, once gathered, sew along the same line with a smaller stitch, the pins helped out a lot.  the gathering was running away from me!!  i don't have a picture of the back, but it is so simple, once everything is gathered and set, sew on the two pieces for the back, slightly overlapping the opening, right sides together.  turn inside out and put those clothes on those pillas!!! done and done.  super easy. i made two and still had tons of sheet left over for more stuff to make.  yay!!!  here is the finished product:
hopefully after the new year i will make a quilt.  i have one in mind, but need um, money and lots of time, neither of which i have at this time, and i don't have the material for that project laying around.  surprising. 
i'm almost done with our costumes and will put them up as soon as i am. (hopefully by tomorrow 'cause we have somewhere to be in them!!)
some more good reads for halloween season that are easy and quick reads:  the soul screamers series by rachel vincent.  i've only read the first one so far, but have high hopes.  since it is ya, it is really quick, which i like.  another one is called bones of faerie by janni lee simner, i'm not sure if it is a series or not, but hope so. also, wicked by gregory maguire. it was good and not what i expected but this one is NOT a quick read!!  but good.  happy sewing and reading!!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Metallic Pumpkins

I love the look of metallic.  I went to the store the other week to get spray paint and came across some silver and gold metallic paint. I thought it would be fun to paint my pumpkins metallic.  It took a matter of minutes and this was the outcome.................

 I decided to put them in my kitchen since I did not have any decorations there. I like how they turned out! I'm sure we'll be seeing this paint again!


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Saturday, October 22, 2011

christmas present #1

ok, i couldn't stand it.  i had to post one of the christmas presents i made. this one is for my sister, tiffany.  i saw this quote (not exactly this quote, but similar) it originally said ..."without a sister" but there are 3 of us sisters, so i changed it to sisters.  this is how i made it:

i had a 16x20 canvas, brown paint, white paint, black paint, and stencils from lowe's ($3). i painted the whole canvas a cream color, with brown and white paint mixed. then i positioned the stencils how i wanted them and painted with the black. after it was dry, i brushed on a darker cream color (it looks brown in this picture) over the top of the whole thing.  i quite like it!!  i am finishing it with a frame from hobby lobby that has not been purchased yet.  it's a barnwood frame.  it's awesome.  and that is one present down for this christmas so far!!  more coming up!! happy saturday!!!

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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Canvas Key Holder

I have a problem losing my keys. I never set them down in the same place and can never find what I did with them when I need to leave. It has made me late for work many times and it is so frustrating!!! I wanted something by my garage door to hold my keys but I wanted something cute too of course =)

So with a little fabric, staples, hooks, and a artist canvas I made a fun decorative key holder.

First, pick a canvas size (I chose 9x12) then cut the fabric so it will wrap around each side of the canvas.

Second, staple the fabric on each side and pull the fabric tight each time.

Third, screw the hooks onto the bottom of the canvas. It is very easy to do since you will only be screwing through the fabric and canvas. I just used my hands.

Fourth, hang it on the wall. And there you have it, a pretty key holder!

I was also thinking of cutting out the word keys and gluing it on the fabric. What do you think??


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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

mmmm....soda floats...

this is not a craft. (we cleaned on saturday and i couldn't stand to think of a new huge sewing mess) this is time well spent with my first grader over one of my favorite treats of all time.  the other day, my husband surprised me and brought me my favorite soda: Jones Green Apple Soda.  in high school, my room was littered with these bottles, all green apple flavored.  i loved to make these into floats.  sooooo good.  the sour of the apple and the sweet of the vanilla ice cream.  mmmmmm.  so when jonathan brought these home for me, i also asked him to get vanilla ice cream the next time he ventured to the store.  i did not touch the soda until i had the ice cream.  i had been telling my oldest, carson about them all excited, he acted like he didn't care.  so i forced it on him last night (monday).  cody was asleep and jonathan is not interested.  carson loved them.  it helps that they are bright green (both of our favorite color) and are sooo good with their contrasting flavors.  mine was gone quickly, followed shortly by a stomach ache.  then carson told me he was too full to finish his and gave it to me....move over stomach ache!!!  no green apple float will go to waste!!  anyway, he was very satisfied with it and we got to spend some time together by ourselves, which was so nice.

something else we've been devouring that is also green:  green smoothies!!  we call them monster smoothies.  this is what i put in mine:  a bit of simply oj, 4 strawberries, 1 serving of lowfat yogurt, a huge handful of spinach, half a banana and oh, half a peach (i don't like ice in mine, since my blender won't blend it).  my kids love it, even though they see me put the spinach in it!! i've even dropped some pounds since i've started!!
you should try these yummy greenish treats for yourself!! one healthy, one not so healthy but equally delicious!!

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Sunday, October 16, 2011

Halloween Wreath

For some reason one of my obsessions lately has been wreaths. I don't know why but I love what they do to a home. They are so welcoming and fun. You can do so many different things with them! This last one I made was so easy and I love how it turned out.

Here is what you need:
foam ring: whatever size you want your wreath to be
tulle: I like to get the ones on a roll, makes it easier to cut. If you get the ones on a roll you will need 2 rolls depending on how full you want it. I chose black to make it be more Halloweeny =)
a couple pins

Step 1: Paint ring whatever color tulle you will be using

Step 2: Cut tulle into 22inch strips (you can make them longer or shorter if you'd like)

Step 3: fold tulle in half, around the ring pull the ends of the tulle through the middle. I know this picture is a little hard to see but it's the best I could do!!
Continue this step until the entire ring is covered and you have made your wreath as full as you'd like

Step 4: Cut a long strip of ribbon. Put it through the wreath at the top and pin it in place. Tie the ribbon about 3 inches from the top then tie it again at the very top. This will leave a ring in the ribbon so you can hang it nicely.

Step 5: Use your ribbon to make a basic bow. I like to use the wired ribbon for this since it is more flexible and will do what I want!

Step 6. Pin bow on top of other ribbon on the front of the wreath.

And here you have it!

You can use whatever color tulle and ribbon and make it for any Holiday or just because =) I do like my Halloween stuff spooky but I think I like fancy more!!


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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Sunday Dinner Menu

Sunday dinner menu for 10/16

My mother-in-law likes to get creative with her cooking every now and then. For Halloween she came up with the idea of serving stew out of a pumpkin. It's quite the hit with the kidos.

So on the menu for Sunday is:

Homemade bread: I would love to give this recipe but my MIL will not allow me to give ALL her secrets away. Too bad because her bread sure is something!!

Apple Spinach Salad: Spinach with cut up apples, strawberries, and sugared almonds with a apple cider vinaigrette mixed with sugar, oil, and onions. My favorite salad!

Pumpkin Pot Stew:
-one medium sized pumpkin (12lbs)
-1 lb small white onion
-4 large carrots
-1 tbls salad oil
-2 lbs beef (stew meat)
-1 14 1/2-oz can beef broth
-1/4 ketchup
- 1 tsp salt
-1/2 tsp pepper
-1/2 tsp dried thyme
-2 lbs potatos
-3/4 lbs mushrooms
-1 12oz package frozen cut Italian green beans, thawed
-2 tbls flour

Cut top of pumpkin, discard seeds and membrane. Place pumpkin in a pie plate in a roasting pan. Place in oven @ 450 degrees. Pour boiling water in roasting pan up to pie plate. Cover loosely with foil. Bake for 1 1/2 hours or until tender.

Peel onions and carrots. Cook over medium heat on stove until golden. Set in bowl. Brown stew meat in pan. Stir in broth, ketchup, salt, pepper, and thyme. Simmer about 20 minutes. Peel potatoes and cut into pieces. Add potatoes, already cooked carrots and onions, and mushrooms. Heat to boiling. Simmer for about 40 minutes. Stir in green beans until warm.

Skim fat from stew. Blend flour and 2 tbls of water in bowl. Stir into liquid in pan. Boil 1 minute.

Place pumpkin on platter. Spoon in stew. Serve.

Pumpkin pie & Halloween Candy for dessert:
1 1/2 c sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cloves
4 large eggs
1 can pumpkin
2 cans evaporated milk
2 unbaked 9-inch deep-dish pie shells

Preheat oven at 425 degrees for 15 minutes. Then reduce to 350 degrees. 

Mix sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves in small bowl. Beat eggs in large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture . Gradually stir in evaporated milk. Pour into pie shells

Bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes or until knife inserted near center come out clean. Cool for 2 hours. Serve!

This is going to be a very Fancy Halloweeny dinner =)

Friday, October 14, 2011

caramel apple chocolate covered cake pops!! oh yeah!!!

hello again!!! welcome back!! ever since i heard of cake pops, i have been all over that situation.  they are so fun and easy to make. they are a bit time consuming,so i like to read a book whilst making them or cleaning, i guess would be good too.  i had an epiphany while drifting to sleep one night...caramel apple cake pops, covered in chocolate and sprinkles....oh yeah.  i love regular caramel apples, but i find them somewhat bothersome to eat.  this is my version of regular caramel apples:  1 white cake mix, 2 apples, apple flavoring (hobby lobby, joanns, michaels), 1 can frosting, 1 pkg individually wrapped caramels, dipping chocolate or regular chocolate chips and add a bit of veg. oil, either lollipop sticks or some other type of stick.  i used skewer sticks because my walmart was out of lollipop sticks and the corn skewers were 50 for $1.  so, here we go!
peel and core apples.  slice them then stick them in a food processor.  make cake according to directions on pkg, but add your apples and the apple flavoring. (i added both! it comes in a pkg of 2)  i wanted them to be really apple-y.  bake according to pkg.  let cool.  now crumble.  this is a good spot to let your kids join in!  make sure they wash their hands (don't take their word for it, mine always say they did, but their hands and fingernails tell a different story)
now that the cake is all crumbled, i do this in the same pan as it was baked in, btw, it's time to add the frosting and melted caramel. i used a whole pkg of caramels.  for this recipe, please do not add all the frosting, if you wanted, you could even omit the frosting and just add the melted caramel to it!! now the pictures will tell the rest of the story...

 so, after dipping the cake pop in chocolate, let it drip for a minute, otherwise you will have a big chocolaty mess.  apply sprinkles by shaking them on, not dipping.  then, place it upright, into a cardboard cake pop stabbing apparatus that will hold them up. let them set for a minute or two, or whenever you are finished stabbing them all in the apparatus, then put them in the fridge.  they are best cold. (in my opinion)
                                           then you are done and it is time to consume them :)

they are not quite the same as caramel apples, but they are sure tasty!! and the caramel is just delightful!!
my boys helped me with these (and the above picture) and though, at times it is frustrating that they don't do it exactly how i tell them (as shown in the above picture), i love to see them really try hard, 'cause they want to eat them so badly!!  they LOVED the cake pop covered in candy corns!!
if i am making these for someone i like to individually wrap them. you can get little bags and ties in the cake section of walmart, joanns, hobby lobby, or michaels. don't for get your coupon!!

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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Pirate Cupcakes

This past weekend my sister asked me to make pirate cupcakes for her friend's birthday
For those of you who know me know I LOVE CUPCAKES
I typically like to make fancy cupcakes with swirly frosting and sprinkles so the pirates were going to be a challenge for me.
Here is how they turned out

I LOVED how they turned out.
And they were so much fun to make.
The cupcakes are chocolate cake with cream filling.
 Basically a homemade hostess cupcake
You can find the recipe HERE

The top is a layer of ganache then fondant made to look like pirates and skull and bones

I think these cupcakes go well with the Halloween season don't you think?


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Monday, October 10, 2011

Freezer paper halloween shirts and candy totes!!

i have more fun and very inexpensive crafts to do with your kids!! yay!!  this does not have to be limited to halloween, we also did some of these at easter time, and at the fourth of july and they were super cute!  these are diy shirts using freezer paper, paint, an iron, an image from the internet and maybe some spooktacular imagination!!  first of all, i googled free fonts, the other day (i will divulge why at a later date closer to christmas!!  you WILLwant to stay tuned!) anyway, i came upon the site california fonts.  they have some seriously wonderful FREE fonts.  i found some awesome halloween fonts that were actually pictures, so using their fonts, my boys chose a picture they wanted for a halloween shirt.  carson chose a very cute mummy, and cody chose a bat. the shirts we used were just random blank shirts that were in their drawers.  walmart has blank shirts for super cheap, fyi.  anyway, i traced the image on my computer screen (again, no working printer) onto my freezer paper on the paper side, not the smooth plastic side.  i carefully cut it out, and used the negative image (as shown below) and ironed it on, being sure i got the edges of the paper. 
here is an example of the image already ironed on.  the eyes, hair and teeth are ironed on too because i was leaving those the color of the fabric underneath.  i could've painted the whole thing green, then paint over it, but i find the freezer paper will sometimes take up part of what i've painted under it.  make sure you've put a piece of cardboard between the front and back of your shirt, or the acrylic paint might bleed through.  now, you are ready to paint!!

carson was painting a white mummy onto a black shirt, so he had to paint thick.  i think we did a few coats.  let dry...not long, acrylic paint dries really quickly!!  i used a blow dryer on the hottest setting to dry the surface!  cody did a black bat on a white shirt and it was the same for his too, lots of coats so it was a consistent black.  it may feel crusty and inflexible at first, but a couple times through the wash and it will soften up significantly!

the finishing touches...the red eyes on the bat i used the end of a small paint brush dipped in red paint.  the lines for the mummy and the eyes, and the mouth i used a sharpie!  it does not come off in the wash! i just copied the picture! and i messed up a little and just painted over it! yay!  they love their shirts and they are both being what their shirts are depicting!! i'm really excited!!!

       so last year we had some really cute halloween candy collecting buckets that were supposed to be their "permanent" candy collecting buckets....yeah, with boys, nothing is permanent (unless it's marker on the carpet).  so, this year, we made some!  so fun!!  we did it the same way we made the shirts.  the boys got to pick out two pictures they liked that were halloweeny. (carson and i didn't really like any of the frankenstein pictures so we collaborated, each came up with a few and decided which features we like on which franks...)
i also made the tote bags myself from some excess fabric from another project (coming in december or late november).  it is drop cloth canvas from lowe's and super cheap. $5 to be exact (may vary where you live).  i just cut them out and sewed 'em up, stuck some old ribbon on them that was extra (fyi, almost everything i have is left over from another project).  then we got to stenciling with our freezer paper!! i absolutely loved the way they turned out!!  they have pre-made tote bags at michaels, joanns and hobby lobby. make sure you have a coupon before venturing out!

these two are back to back on the same bag
these two are back to back on the same bag
i love this one!!  it's my favorite!! 
i got the letter stencils in the address numbers isle at lowe's.  you have to keep a sharp eye!! i almost missed them!  $3.

as for dressing up, as of right now it goes as follows:
carson: mummy (i finally talked him into it!!)
cody: bat (he wanted to be this last year, i made a costume, then at the last minute changed his mind)
me: the wicked witch of the west (i will have ruby slippers though, for fun)
jonathan: a pumpkin head, maybe (he said that last year and the year before)

i think i will post how i make the costumes here.  again, i have most everything...
with that, i will leave you, so you can make your own super easy shirts or totes, i will be watching harry potter with my kids...and very reluctantly cleaning up my mess....maybe.

p.s. coming soon are some fall-flavored cake pops!! i can't wait to share these!

umm...this has nothing to do with this post, but a fantastic read in the spirit of halloween, is the forest of hands and teeth.  creepy and very good.enjoy!

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Sunday, October 9, 2011

Sunday Dinner Menu

The Sarager's have a tradition where they always eat Sunday dinner together. Except it's a little hard for Jonathan and Cherisse to be at these dinners =( Patti used to make these huge yummy dinners for us. Now we usually split up the work and switch off homes between all of us. I love reading other people's dinner menu so I thought I would share our Sunday dinner menu each week!

This week we are celebrating our Mother-on-law's birthday at Laine and Anson's house. (Anson is the oldest Sarager boy) Unfortunately this dinner menu will not include any recipes because everything we decided to do is store bought. This is not usually what we do but we got what Patti wanted!

So here is the menu:

Filet Mignon: Ted (our father-in-law) showed us a little trick to making each filet go a long way. We cut the meat in half the long way so you have two long thinner pieces of meat. That way we can feed two people per piece. This is an awesome way to save money! We season the meat with Montreal Steak Seasoning then grill it. Very yummy!

Grand Parisian Salad: this is a salad we bought from Costco that has a fancy lettuce blend with Julienne carrots, white balsamic dressing, frosted almonds, dried cranberries, and feta cheese.

Corn on the cob: boiled then add butter and salt.

Red Potatoes with seasoning: this is so good!! You cut up some red potatoes then sprinkle some olive oil, Parmesan, rosemary, garlic, and salt and pepper. You cook it in the oven on 350 for 45 minutes to an hour. Super easy and super good!

7 layer Chocolate cake from Costco for dessert!

I am looking forward to tonight's dinner!!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Grocery Bag Holder

Has anyone else noticed how big of a pain it is to store plastic grocery bags??
The past couple years my husband and I have just thrown them in a cabinet just stuffed wherever,
They always seem to fall out of just get in the way 

Now I know you are all thinking,
 So what can we do about this??
The solution is very easy, all you need is in old clorox container, scrapbook paper, mod podge, and a little paint if you wanted.

Take the label off and the lid 
cut your paper to the size of the container
then slap on a bunch of mod podge all over and glue the scrapbook paper to it
I decided to paint the lid to match the paper
so I painted it then waited for it to dry
I stuffed all my plastic grocery bags in to the container and put the lid on!
Pull one of the bags threw the hole in the lid.
And there you have it, a cute convenient grocery bag holder

Now my husband can stop bugging me about hoarding grocery bags =)


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