Thursday, March 22, 2012

Sock monkey and suckers .. or... A sucker for a sock monkey!

A friend of mine asked me if I would make her a fuschia sock monkey. Since she is one of my biggest fans when it comes to my sock monkeys and her birthday was coming up, I agreed.

Never again will I use these fuzzy socks.

I am sure that they would be soft and cozy on a pair of feet, but my sewing machine HATES them.  However, everything turned out great in the end!

I started with a pair of fuzzy socks.  Only grey worksocks from now on in my monkey making carreer!

I marked out my pattern directly on the socks and sewed them up before cutting.  I use the same directions that come with Red-Heel socks.  They are all over the internet.  The reason that there are pins in the socks is to keep them from shifting.  I find the pins to be very helpful.

Here are all my pieces sewn up, cut out and turned right-side-out.  That little pile on the right is all the scraps.  I am always amazed by how little of the socks gets wasted!

Then I stuffed him up, sewed his limbs on and gave him a scarf.  All my sock monkeys have a scarf or necklace to hide the neck stitches. They also have a red button heart and a numbered tag at the base of the tail that says "Handmade by Ange". I didn't think to take a butt shot.  I think this one is #25.
I almost didn't give him away!!

While roaming the internet one day I saw an adorable quickie-craft that I also did for my friend.  The original (to me) was for a 30th birthday, so I added ten since my friend was turning 40.  I'm two years older, and don't really agree with the sentiment, but it is funny!

Thanks for looking!!
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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Party Popcorn is positively pleasing to the palate

 I read how to make Party popcorn and knew that I just had to make some for my daughter's party.  After all, they were watching a movie and what's a movie without popcorn?

It is super easy, very tasty and looks cool too!

First you pop your corn.  I stopped using microwave bags a long time ago.  This $11 microwave popcorn bowl has paid for itself many, many times over!

Ready to pop...

Poppity pop pop!

Times this by 3, and you have what I made for ten girls.  Including me!

The only other ingredients you need are white chocolate melting wafers, sprinkles and a little salt.  And a wax paper covered cookie sheet, but that isn't really an ingredient.

We love sprinkles in this house!  Well, Hubby not so much...

Spread your popped popcorn on the wax paper covered cookie sheet and set aside.  Melt your chocolate.  I boil water in a little pot, remove that from the heat and place my Pyrex cup with my wafers in the pot and stir until smooth.  Every time I try to use the microwave to melt these, I ruin them.
Then you drizzle the chocolate over the popcorn, sprinkle with a little bit of salt (Really!  It makes it soooooo much better!) and shake some sprinkles on.  I mixed this up with my  hands (careful, the chocolate gets hot) and kept drizzling and sprinkling until I thought it looked good.  Your hands will get messy.  That is why I have no photos of this step!  Then set it aside to cool and firm up.

Looks good, doesn't it!?

Then I packaged them up in these cute cardboard containers I found at a dollar store.

We will definitely be doing this again.  I wonder how milk chocolate would taste...... Pin It

Saturday, March 10, 2012

We all scream for ice cream...cake!!!!!

My daughter's favourite cake is an ice cream cake.  And it couldn't be easier.  Her birthday is today (Happy birthday Sweetie!!!) but this cake was the one for her party earlier.

I'll teach you.  I use a cake mix, a 2L carton of ice cream, a can of frosting and sprinkles.

I start by baking a cake in a 9"x13" pan. 

Usually I put the ice cream on top of the cake and then frost it.  It is very difficult to smear frosting on cold ice cream.  It just slides around.  This year I had the genius idea to slice the cake in half.  Hubby did this for me because he has a nice, steady hand. I put a layer of waxed paper between layers, then froze the cake so I would have a more firm surface to work on later.  I've never tried to add the ice cream to a fresh, squishy cake but I imagine that it would be a bit of a challenge.  (The cake in this photo is already frozen.  I didn't remember to take one while it was fresh.  It was cut while fresh, not frozen)

Then slice up the ice cream (the original directions said to soften the ice cream and spread it on the cake, but I find slicing the ice cream much, much easier) and layer it on the bottom layer of the cake.

Then place the second layer over the ice cream. Yum! Looking good!

Then frost the cake. If you want, you can pop it back into the freezer and frost it later.  The sides are a little awkward to frost because the icing slips and slides on the exposed ice cream, but who is going to be looking that closely?   I'm not a great cake decorator at the best of times, but you have to work pretty quickly so the ice cream doesn't melt.

But it's okay, because you can disguise it with sprinkles!   My daughter likes pink and she likes sparkles, so sparkly pink sugar is perfect for her!

With some round sprinkles and star quins thrown on there too.

Now, cover it and get it back in the freezer.  Take it out about ten minutes before you want to serve it to let the cake thaw a little.  Otherwise it is rather difficult to cut and just as difficult to eat!

Try it yourself!  Nobody needs to know how easy it was!
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Monday, March 5, 2012

Little cosmetic bags disguised as loot bags

My daughter turns fourteen on Saturday and wanted a birthday party.  Since "boys are gross" (yup, still.), she invited only girls.  I remember seeing a wonderful (and easy looking) tutorial for a pencil case and thinking: "That would make a cute cosmetic bag".  So I found my bookmark and headed to Creating My Way to Success for the instructions. I made ten, assembly line style, so I have no idea how long it would have taken to make one, but they were very easy.  The only time I ran into problems was when I wasn't paying proper attention.  And when I broke a zipper pull beyond repair, but we won't talk about that.  It was at a time where it was really easy to replace the zipper, thank goodness!  I made mine smaller too.  I kind of impressed myself by being able to pull that off!  I wanted to use the zippers that I already had, which were 7" zippers.  My finished bags were approximately 4"x6".

The part that took the longest was the initial pinning for my first two steps.  Naturally, I didn't quite follow the tutorial precisely.  I did a couple steps out of order.

The next day, I had these!  They are filled with girly stuff.  My daughter chose the colours/scents that she thought her friends would like best and customized each bag.  We attached tags to the top zipper that said "thank you" with the name of the intended recipient.  My daughter chose the pink one with the black zipper, which just happens to be the one I broke the zipper on, for herself.

Thank you, Jill for a great, easy to follow tutorial!
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