Thursday, 28 February 2013

Easter Cookie Decorating Kit

An Easter Cookie Decorating Kit that is super fun & easy to in?
When my kids were younger, one of their very favourite activities in the kitchen was to decorate cookies. They didn't care what kind of long as there were frosting and sprinkles involved, it was total awesome-sauce for them!
One of the reasons that I love blogging is that I have an outlet for my creative brain activity to go!
It comes out in creations and colours and fun photos like this project.

 The inspiration for this project came from seeing these little candy kits at places like Williams Sonoma and Chapters, except those kits cost a gazillion dollars. I don't have a gazillion dollars, so I made one for about $4... {insert happy smile here}. These organizing boxes can easily be found at the dollar store, and after a good washing in soap & water, I filled one up with Easter candy and sprinkles from the local bulk food joint. Then I tied it up with pretty purple baker's twine and a chipboard tag from my scrapbooking stash.
 I made these delicious soft sugar cookies from my Grandmother's sugar cookie recipe, and tied them up with more baker's twine. If you are not a baker or don't have the time, you could easily use a roll of purchased sugar cookie dough....just wrap some Easter paper around it.
 A can of purchased frosting completes the kit. I wrapped some scrapbook paper around the can and embellished with more twine and a little tag. Homemade frosting in a mason jar would be just as great!
This would be such a fabulous gift for little kids or big kids for an Easter activity.
It would work well as a take home from a birthday party too.
And what a hootin' surprise this would be to mail to someone special...can you imagine their surprise in opening this?
Laughs and smiles I tell ya!
Have you started any Easter crafting/projects or is it a little too early?
Part of being in blogland means that projects are always shared early so readers can have the time to shop and make their creations at home before the holiday hits.
But I don't mind sharing early...and my family certainly doesn't mind eating cookies {wink}.
Thank you so much for visiting!
If you would like to take a peek, here are some of my other Easter projects:
And here are some of my fun Pinterest boards:
{Thank you so much to the sweet people at Greenmunch for sharing their pretty Baker's Twine with me! I am a lucky girl!}

This post is linked to:
Cozy Little House, Not Just A HousewifeTip Me Tuesday, The Sunday Soiree Party,

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Chickadee Pencils

I just love this sweet little craft...Chickadee Pencils.
So cute and pretty to look at.
I think I may love Easter crafting more than Christmas crafting because of the beautiful pastel colours...they are so refreshing at the end of Winter.
This project is easy to make and kind on the budget; all of the materials can be found at the dollar store. 

This would be a terrific project to make with a group of little people, or to make for the little ones in your life.
Here is a visual of the supplies you will need:
 Chickadee Pencils
-assorted Easter pencils
-assorted ribbons to tie around the pencils.
-yellow pom poms
-orange felt
-googly eyes
-hot glue or school glue

1. Tie ribbons around each pencil as shown.
2. Using hot glue or school glue, coat pencil eraser with glue and press on yellow pom pom. Let dry.
3. Glue on googly eyes.
4. Cut small chickadee beaks from orange felt and glue on.
I love, love, love crafting...although I don't do it as often as I used to. My daughter enjoyed crafting all the time when she was younger....she was always colouring pictures, stringing beads or finding something to make  with glue and whatever else she could get her hands on.
I miss those days.
But blogging certainly fills that gives me an outlet where I can share fun & creative ideas...and I love that!
Thank you so much for visiting!
If you are looking for more Easter ideas, you may want to visit these posts:
And don't forget to visit these fun boards on Pinterest:

This post is linked to:
Spring Craft Link PartyCozy Little House,Tip Me Tuesday, Time To Sparkle,  Home Stories A to Z,  The Sunday Soiree Party,

Friday, 22 February 2013

12 Fun Popcorn & Candy Ideas For Oscar Night

Oscar night is coming and I cannot wait! It's a great night at home in front of the TV and it celebrates one of our family`s favourite pastimes....movies.
I know that I am not alone in this....lots of people enjoy Oscar night.
{Plus...not all of us are lucky enough to be invited to Elton John's Oscar Party!}
Not only is a night of glitz and glam, but it also brings attention to lesser known movies that deserve the Slumdog Millionaire a few years ago.
I spent some in time in the blogosphere putting together some fun ideas and inspiration for an Oscar Night gathering...whether it be with your own little family, with girlfriends or a partner.
I love this idea of putting out different types of popcorn, small brown bags & scoops for people to help themselves. If you don't have large glass vessels to hold the popcorn, I think baskets lined with waxed paper or napkins would work equally well.

My family loves flavoured popcorn, so this would be a perfect choice for them. You could find inexpensive salt & pepper shakers at the dollar store and then add an assortment of flavours to plain popcorn.
I  love this ideas of putting popcorn into glass cookie jars with lids. This would also keep the popcorn from getting stale throughout the night.
And if you have a special caramel popcorn recipe or other popcorn munchie recipe, I love this idea of putting small servings into brown bags. You could also trim the top of the bags with decorative edge scissors if you happen some in your crafting supplies.
Serving popcorn in movie theatre bags or even microwave bags also works for individual servings, and keeps setup and cleanup simple and stress free!
I also found some lovely candy ideas that would be perfect for Oscar night.
Berry baskets lined with paper bags makes a cute way to display and serve candy.
{Don't forget to include small scoops or spoons for serving}.
Licorice served in small plastic or glass cups looks tasty and delicious.
I love a piece of red licorice with popcorn for movie night.
Lots of us have these plastic serving dishes at home, and they make an excellent way to serve different types of candy for a crowd.
Candy grouped together by colour and placed in small bowls looks adorable & tasty too.
Assorted glass jars and vases make a great display for different sizes and shapes of candy.
If ice cream is more your style, here is a simple ice cream tray that I made up for our family.
You only need to add vanilla ice cream!
 We have a Soda Stream system that we love. Sometimes for a special treat, we let the kids choose what type of soda they would like to go with some special snacks for a movie night.
I love to make sparkling water with a splash of real juice.
And if you would like to add more fun to Oscar Night, don`t forget to visit the Oscar site HERE to print off a ballot for your picks for  the winners!
So, will you be taking part in the excitement of Oscar night, or is heading to bed early with a good book more your type of evening?
What movies and actors will you be rooting for?
Do you think there will be some upsets and surprises this year?

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Easter Pretzel Hugs

Since these small morsels are a favourite of my kids, I just knew that a request for an Easter version was right around the corner.

 I did change things up a little this time by using yellow melting wafers instead of Hershey's hugs.
And using the melting wafers takes less time because there are not hugs to unwrap...bonus!
And Easter candy is sooo pretty to look at with all the pastel colours.

Easter Pretzel Hugs

Yellow melting wafers
Easter M&Ms
Easter sprinkles

1. Preheat oven to 250.
2. Place pretzels on cookie sheet and a yellow melting wafer on top of each pretzel.
3. Place in oven and watch carefully until melting wafer melts over the pretzel a little and is soft.
4. Remove cookie sheet of pretzels from oven and press Easter M&M's into each pretzel with melted wafer. Sprinkles with Easter sprinkles.
These are the easiest and yummiest treats to make!
Here are some other Easter ideas from Echoes of Laughter for you:
I have lots of fun Easter and Spring projects to share in the coming weeks!
I cannot wait!
Thank you so much for visiting!
If you are looking to be inspired, please visit some of these boards on Pinterest:

This post is linked to these parties:
Not Just A HousewifeTip Me Tuesday, The Sunday Soiree Party,

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Banana Split Bars

We are totally bananas for these banana split bars. They are such a nice treat in a bit of a hot summer day on a spoon. This recipe encompasses everything yummy about the original dessert...bananas, pineapple, maraschino cherries and whipped cream...but without the brain freeze!
This recipes comes from my Great Aunt Kay...who wrote this in a family recipe book for my wedding shower in 1995. It is a really delicious dessert that takes very little time to make and requires no baking at all.
Here is the super easy recipe that requires no baking!

Banana Split Bars

2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup melted butter
2 cups icing sugar
1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup cream cheese
4-5 large bananas
2/3 cup maraschino cherries, chopped in two and drained well
1 can pineapple tidbits, drained well
3 cups whipped cream or Cool Whip
chocolate sprinkles for garnish, if desired
maraschino cherries with stems, if desired

1. Mix melted butter into graham cracker crumbs. Pat into bottom of 9 x 13 pan.
2. Beat together icing sugar, butter and 1/2 cup cream cheese. Beat until light & fluffy. Spread over graham cracker layer.
3. Add layer of sliced bananas, pineapple tidbits and maraschino cherries.
4. Cover fruit layer with whipped cream or cool whip.
5. Cover bars with wrap and place in fridge for at least 2 hours before serving.
6. Cut into bars with a sharp knife. Garnish each slice with chocolate sprinkles, a slice of banana and a maraschino cherry before serving.

My kids are crazy about this dessert. We don't make it that often, but when we's happy smiles all around.

You can also check out these other delicious recipes:
And don't forget to take a peek at some of my favourite boards on Pinterest:

This post is linked to:
Time To Sparkle, Lil Luna, Gingersnap Crafts, Clean & Scentsible, I Gotta Create, Somewhat Simple, 
What's Cooking With Ruthie, Fun in The Sun,

Sunday, 17 February 2013

12 Great Ideas for Family Day....

On the third Monday in February {this year February 18th}, some provinces in Canada celebrate a special day called "Family Day". There is no school for kids and lots of businesses observe the holiday so families can have time together. Having a special day in the middle of winter to celebrate family is awesome-sauce...with a cherry on top!
To complete the awesomeness, I have rounded up some fun outdoor and indoor ideas for families to enjoy on Monday, Frebruary 18th...or any time!
1. Besides the ususal skating and tobaggoning, how about some winter hula hopping?

2. Or how about creating this interesting creature in the yard somewhere?
3. Here's another great activity that kids can try out...tic tac toe in the snow.
  4. And when the outside fun is done, you could round up the troops for a delicious hot chocolate bar.
 5. If the little and bigs are hungry from the outdoor play, some family friendly Sloppy Joes are perfect for famished tummies. Serve with some home fries, or a salad.
6. Taco Soup made in the slowcooker is a great way to feed the family. Just dump everything together before you go outside and you will come home to a fantastic smelling meal!
7. If colds and sniffly noses, or cold wind chill temperatures prevent outdoor activities, here are some great activities for inside. How about a Snowman Cookie Project made with a can of cinamon rolls and some candy?
8. A pretend "Day At The Beach Lunch" is easy to prepare and makes a lovely lunch for Family Day. You could make it an indoor picnic by spreading a blanket on the floor.

9. Digging some items out of the craft closet for some collage creating will keep little hands & hearts occupied as well. Continue with the "Day At The Beach" theme with a Sea Life Collage created on paper plates.
10. An Ice Cream Dessert Tray makes a nice finish to a meal or can be a fun snack for a movie date.
11. Whip up some cute Jello Jar Monsters by adding your fav jello to some mason jars and then let the kids decorate them with candy.
12. And here's another special treat you could make for the family...Caramel Apple Dip with Granny Smith Apple Slices. This is my kids' absolute favourite dip... so delicious and so good with fresh apple slices.
How about your family?
I would love to hear what you are doing for Family Day!
Happy Family Day!
And don't forget to take a peek at some of my recent favourite Pinterest Boards:

This post is linked to these great parties:

Friday, 15 February 2013

Easy Shrimp & Pasta Dinner...

I love easy dinners for my family!
And you can never go wrong with these 3 favourites...pasta, shrimp & cheese.
This is also the perfect in make- ahead can make this the day before it`s served or in the morning to serve at dinner.
 You can use any pasta that your family likes. I used bow-tie pasta, but penne or fusilli  pasta would work just as well.

I also used half regular pasta and half whole wheat pasta to increase the fibre.
{My family gets a little whiney when I use all whole wheat pasta.}
If your family doesn`t like shrimp, swap it out for chicken.
 Easy Shrimp & Pasta Dinner
6-7 cups cooked pasta
2 cups shrimp, peeled and tails off
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped red pepper
1 tbsp butter or olive oil
1 cup sour cream
1 can cream of mushroom soup or cheddar cheese soup
1 cup shredded cheese for top
1/2 sliced green onions for top, if desired
1. In heated frying pan, add butter or olive oil. Add onion, celery, red pepper & garlic. Cook, stirring frequently,  until onion is translucent...about 4-5 minutes. Then add shrimp and fry until shrimp is cooked.
2. While veggies are cooking in frying pan, spread cooked pasta in large 9x13 casserole dish.
3. Add cooked veggies & shrimp, sour cream & mushroom soup to pasta in casserole dish. Stir with large spoon until mixed.
4. Sprinkle with shredded cheese and green onions.
5. Cover with foil and heat pasta & shrimp dish in 350 oven until cheese is melted and pasta & shrimp are hot....about 20 minutes. OR cover with foil place in fridge until 20 minutes before serving time, and then heat in oven.
6. Serve with a salad.
This makes a delicious dinner for hungry people.
This is a dish that I like to make in the morning and place in the fridge until dinner time.
It is such a good feeling knowing that dinner is taken care of!
Here are some other easy meals:
And don't forget to take a peek at these boards on Pinterest:

that give mcdonalds coupons and 
breakfast coupons you also can find recipe from