Fabric Flowers

I’ve made these for a couple of different occasions, but one thing that comes to mind when I think of Valentine’s Day is FLOWERS! The great part about these Fabric Flowers is that you can use them year after year…


These are really easy to make. You’ll need:

  • Fabric of your choice
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun and hot glue
  • Stem– I used these wooden dowels that I found on Amazon and they were perfect. (This is an affiliate link which means I may receive a small commission if you make a purchase. There is no change in the cost to you!)

Cut your fabric into 5 x 5 inch squares. At first, I was very particular about my measurements, cuts, and straight lines. However, the more flowers I made, the more I realized that I did not need to be exact. You’ll need about 10 squares- 9 will be petals and 1 will be the base of the flower.

My crooked 5 x 5 squares

Fold each square in half. Then, fold in half again.

Take one square and round off the edges. Then, cut the middle so it unfolds into a circle with the middle cut out. Cut from one edge to the middle. This will be what you glue all the petals onto.

Next, the petals. Take your remaining 9 squares and scallop the open edges (not the 2 folded sides). Again, you don’t have to make these cuts perfect. From experience, I liked the rounded edges of the petals better than not cutting them at all.

Then, we hot glue them. Unfold once. Hot glue in the middle. Then, press back together. Add hot glue along the outer edge of the same side. Then bring one side of the petal down and press into place.

Repeat with other side and now you have a petal!

Once the petals are complete, lay your circle “base” good side face down. Make sure to leave about 1/4″ on each edge so you will have space to glue the base to your stem. Glue each petal onto the base. You can move the petals closer together, depending on how full you want the flower to be.

For this flower, I used 8 petals. Its not an exact science. Just go with what you love and what you think looks great!

Next, add the stem. You want to make sure the length of the rod is “behind” the flower. Give it a practice roll without glue to make sure you have it right! Then, when you are happy and comfortable with the process, get your hot glue gun out, again. Glue the extra edge of fabric to your wooden rod and begin to roll.

I added a little more hot glue around petal 3 and 6. Tuck the petals in, or fan them out a little more, as you roll around the stem. Finally, tuck in and glue the remaining fabric for a clean flower base.

I love these fabric flowers. For Valentine’s Day, I gave them as gifts, but I have non holiday ones in my office. Great thing is, I can use them as long as I want, then change out the patterns when needed. Where will you display your fabric flowers?

Garlic Herb Butter

Left over herbs? Make a compound butter and freeze it.

Compound butters are not really that complex and they’re delicious.

I use my compound butter as a great addition to steak, to make garlic bread (which also transforms an ordinary sandwich into an extraordinary sandwich), or to toss with roasted veggies.

Compound butters are easy to make and store well in your freezer. Roll it in parchment paper then cut off what you need when you need it.

Garlic Herb Butter

This compound butter is not so complex!  Easy to make, stores wonderfully in the freezer, and is delicious in multiple applications.  

Author jshivey

Ingredients

  • 1 lb unsalted butter
  • 3 sprigs rosemary
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 shallot
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Take butter out of the fridge and bring to room temperature (if sticks are separated, this still may take an hour).  

  2. Mince garlic and shallots.

  3. Pull herbs from stems and chop as finely as possible.

  4. Add garlic, shallots, rosemary, and thyme to the softened butter.  Salt and pepper to taste (recipe calls for unsalted butter so you can control the salt level as you like.  If you use salted butter, you may wish to add less salt).  Mix all to incorporate. 

  5. Put mix onto parchment paper and roll into an 1″ to 1 1/2″ thick log.

  6. Freeze until needed.  To use, run a sharp knife under hot water and slice off as much as needed.  Bring back to room temp or melt in microwave.  

If you’re looking for some great kitchen tools to make recipes like this easier, look no further!

The following contains affiliate links meaning if you click through and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.

The gadget on top is a garlic press and is my go to for crushed or minced garlic.

The bottom gadget is an alligator chopper and while originally intended for garlic, I use it to mince smaller items like shallots or jalapenos.

Happy cooking!

25 Days of Christmas

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning,  that at no additional cost to you, I will receive a commission if you click through and make a purchase. 

One of the things I love most about the holidays is creating traditions.  When I was little, on Christmas Eve, my grandmother would let my brother and I open one gift each, and then would read ” ‘Twas the night before Christmas” to us.  Every year she also bought us a special ornament which is something my husband and I have carried on since our first Christmas, even when we were dating.  While ornament gifting has become one of my favorite things, I wanted to add something of my own to our traditions.  This year, we’re starting the 25 Days of Christmas.

By no means, do I think any person should buy an additional 25 gifts prior to Christmas!   HOWEVER, how much fun is it to unwrap something every night leading up to the BIG DAY?  So, I wrapped up all the Christmas books and movies that we already had.  I do buy I new Advent Calendar each year but then I filled in with recipes, free printable coloring pages, and cute crafts.  BAM.  25 days of Christmas.

Starting on November 30th, there is something to unwrap each night.  We start on the 30th because the first gift happens to be the Advent Calendar (that we open every morning, starting December 1st).  Please don’t think I’m crazy for doing an Advent Calendar AND the 25 Days of Christmas but this is the first year that I’ll be home during December.   Usually, its a 55 hour work weeks.  I’m so excited to have time to do all these things with the boys this year and the 25 Days of Christmas kind of organizes all the fun holiday activities into one spot.

The 25 Days of Christmas list below is full of suggestions of things to wrap up before November 30th.  I would not suggest buying something for each night!!!  Simply take whatever holiday books and movies that you already have on hand.  Don’t have enough to fill up 25 days?  Maybe start with 10 days of Christmas or 12 days of Christmas.

25 Days of Christmas        

November 30th- Advent Calendar Lego Star Wars

December 1st- Paper Chain Craft

December 2nd- Pajamas 

December 3rd- Movie Merry Madagascar

December 4th- Book The Berenstain Bears and The Joy of Giving

December 5th- Coloring Pages

December 6th- Recipe for Salted Caramel Butter Bars from Stlcook.com

December 7th- Blocks- Mega Blocks How the Grinch Saved Christmas

December 8th-Movie Super Why ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas and Other Fairytales

December 9th- Book Construction Site on Christmas Night

December 10th- Gingerbread Man Craft

December 11th- Coloring Pages

December 12th- Movie Nickelodeon Favorites: Merry Christmas

December 13th- Book Llama Llama Jingle Bells

December 14th- Recipe

December 15th- Ornaments 

December 16th- Ornament Craft

December 17th- Book How the Grinch Stole Christmas!

December 18th- Movie Thomas and Friends: A Very Thomas Christmas

December 19th- Book ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas Adapted Version

December 20th- Recipe

December 21st- Coloring Pages

December 22nd- Book How to Catch an Elf

December 23rd- Movie It’s a Very Merry Muppet Christmas

December 24th- Twas the Night Before Christmas

 

Paper Chain Craft

Looking for an easy way to count down the days to Christmas?  This paper chain can help!

It’s also such an easy craft for the kids to make.  We make these as part of our 25 Days of Christmas.  All you need is scissors, construction paper, and a glue stick.

First, cut your construction paper.  We like to alternate our chain links with red and green.  The best way I found to cut them was to fold the construction paper in half, then fold each of those halves in half.

Cut each quarter into 3 strips.  That way you have 12 strips in each color (24 days until Christmas)!

Use the glue stick on one end and then form a ring.

Alternate colors.

Keep it up until you have 24 links.  Then each morning, rip off one chain until you reach Christmas Eve.  Throw the last chain away cause tomorrow Santa Clause will have arrived!!!!

The cutest snowman around

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning,  that at no additional cost to you, I will receive a commission if you click through and make a purchase.  

The next craft night is right around the corner, and so is December, so of course our theme is holiday related.   We always aim to teach a craft that people wouldn’t necessarily attempt on their own, but also something that is easy.  The goal is for our guests to leave craft night inspired to make that craft again.  So, cue this cute sock snowman.

Then, I decided to take this snowman a step further.  I always do homemade gifts for the holidays for my coworkers and teachers at the school.  So this year, I’m turning this guy into a gift card holder.  Gift card presenter? Keeper of a holiday gift card?  I will come up with a cute name for him yet!  What’s for sure is that this little guy is my homemade gift this year.

One of the best things about this craft is that it is so easy.  In one afternoon, I had produced a small army for my sister-in-law to give to her coworkers.  They’re almost addictive to make.  So here we go:

I bought my socks on Amazon in bulk (a 6 pack will yield 24 snowmen) and the important thing to look for are socks that are all white.  I have come across a couple of different ways to make sock snowmen but most of them discard the foot part of the sock. I say “Use it!”  If you use socks that are all white, you don’t need to worry about cutting out the grey or gold toes/heel.  Just cut the sock in half and each sock will make 2 of these cute things.  I started with the “ankle” part, or tube, of the sock for my first snowman.

I flipped the tube inside out and sewed the cut part of the sock together.  As it turns out, sewing it is unnecessary and you can just use rubber bands! Make sure the rubber band is tight, then flip your sock right side out, again.  Now, the messy part.  Begin to fill your tube with rice.  I used rice because it was cheap. This is also great because you run the risk of more than half of your rice not making it into your sock.  Trial and error brought me to the conclusion that it is best to use a pasta spoon to transport rice from bag to sock.  I worked over a paper plate so I could easily reuse the spilled rice.

I used more rice than I thought that I would.  It’s important to fill the sock up and then push the rice down to make the bottom part bigger and have more room for additional rice.   This will make for one plump snowman!

After my snowman was adorably fat, I sewed up the top of the sock.  Again, I only did this with the first one that I made and all the others (22 to count), I have successfully made by using rubber bands.  Now, the fun part.  We get to dress him!  The possibilities of cute socks are endless, but in the end, I was still looking to not spend a lot of money on these.  Something like this would be perfect!  I cut my patterned sock above the heel and, using the tube part again, had the perfect size “sweater” for my snowman!  The twine at the neck isn’t mandatory, but it does keep the belly and head at your desired “plumpness”.  And twine makes all things crafty look great.

I cut the rest of the heel out of the bottom portion of the sock and had the perfect size hat for my snowman. For this particular one, I cut the toes off and the tied the top up with more twine.  Next, I used construction paper and a hole punch to cut out his eyes.  I cut his nose out of construction paper as well, no hole punch needed.

Here are some of the other snowmen:

Get creative!  To make the snowman with the scarf, I cut 2 strips out of the sock.  I wrapped the first around the neck, but it wasn’t long enough to tie.  I wrapped the second piece around the ends of the first to make a knot and there you have it.

To make these perfect for teacher gifts, I bought gift card envelopes and added some more of that crafty twine.  All I have left to do is buy some gift cards to their favorite coffee shops, treat places, or grocery stores and this gift is complete.  And SO CUTE!

 

Happy crafting, friends!

 

Creamy Horseradish Sauce

I needed something delicious to compliment the Stinger Sliders we made for the Monster Truck Party.  The sour cream almost takes away from the heat of the horseradish and the dijon mustard makes the flavor bold without adding more spicy.  This sauce is so incredible that I almost didn’t have any left to put on the sliders!  Use this creamy horseradish sauce to compliment tri-tip, as a potato chip dip, spread it on a sandwich, just straight up eat it out of the bowl.  Yum.

Creamy Horseradish Sauce

This creamy horseradish sauce is KILLER.  The best part is that it has all the FLAVOR of horseradish but only a little bit of the heat.  YUM. 

Prep Time 5 minutes
Author jshivey

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup mayonaise
  • 2 table spoon prepared horseradish
  • 2 table spoon sour cream
  • 2 table spoon dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Mix all ingredients together.  Enjoy on sandwiches, as a compliment to steak, or as a dip.  

Recipe Notes

This sauce is easy and delicious. You can enjoy it immediately, but its even better after chilling for an hour.  

Monster Truck Party

Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning, that at no additional cost to you, I will receive a commission if you click through and make a purchase. 

The baby turns 3 in just a couple of days.

I wasn’t concerned when the oldest turned 5.  I even dropped him off at Kindergarten and didn’t shed a tear.

But the BABY turning 3?  Where has the time gone?

For the last year, he’s been obsessed with Monster Trucks.  Its actually his response to everything.

Me:”How old are you?”

Almost 3:  “Big Monster Truck”

Me: “What do you want for lunch?”

Almost 3: “Wrecking Crew Monster Truck”

So, naturally, when asked what kind of birthday party he wanted to have… you know what he said.

I decided after 5’s birthday party that I would no longer hand out goodie bags.   I mean does anyone keep the stuff in them anyway?  I’m not knocking it- my boys are SO excited in the car on the way home from a party.  They pull out each item as if they have found gold.  “Mom, did you see this sticker?”  “Mom, no way!  Bubbles!!!!”  After a couple of days though, I get excited to find all those little things that would eventually end up under the couch and/or chewed up by the dog and I throw them away.    So, I decided to change our party game plan and hand out t-shirts instead.  Right now, it’s easy- we constantly hang out with same crew.  There’s 7 boys in total.  The oldest is 6 and the youngest is 6 weeks.

I’m digging the way they turned out.

I started by cheating.  I bought a pack of different colored t-shirts all in size 4.  Turns out this was a great game plan and fit everyone who was size 3 up to size 5 perfectly (everyone but the baby!).  The stencil and the paint were not that expensive either!  At the time of purchase, I bought all my supplies for under $30 and I had supplies left over.

To be honest, it probably cost the same as the goodie bags.  It might have taken a little longer to put together- each shirt took about 15-20 minutes- but I feel like it was really worth it.  I’m also really excited to see how the group pictures will turn out.

Thanks for stopping by!  I can’t wait to post the recipes and décor from the party this Saturday!

 

Contact Me

Let me know what questions and/or feedback you have for me. I’ll get back to you as quickly as I can.

Thanks! I look forward to hearing from you.

About Me

Hi! I’m Jennifer. Thanks for stopping by.

I always wanted to be a writer.  I entered my first poetry contest in second grade and never stopped writing after that.  The only thing that changed was 1990 me didn’t know what “writing” would look like in 2018. 

I’m a mother to 2 little boys and I’m here to write about what our days look like.  We plan parties, make crafts, and cook delicious food.  Thanks for letting me share with you!