Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Valentine Baking

I decided to bake some things for Valentine's Day for my family. I think I had 6 baskets of baked goods in all. I got this bright idea before I started working again--so I didn't have as much time to make everything perfect. I forgot to take a picture of the finished basket. Boo! Here's what went inside the baskets, though.

Pillsbury Sugar Cookies--these were a great deal!

Brownies with red M&Ms candies on top. Shhh, they were Christmas M&Ms.

Chocolate covered pretzels. I used Wilton candy melts for these--and they were out of a clearance Christmas candy-making kit.

And peanut butter Rice Krispies with Dove chocolates in the middle.

I also had various candy mixed in--Hershey's Kisses, Russell Stover hearts, Reese's hearts, Snicker's hearts, etc. All of that was purchased on my couponing trips. The baggies and cellophane bags were from Dollar Tree.

Overall, the baskets were a big hit! Everything tasted great and my family loved them. I'll definitely do this again in the future. :)

Hubby and I had a great day. We went out to dinner after I got home from school. Then we delivered our baskets to our family. We spent the rest of the evening together relaxing. He surprised me with flowers, Breaking Dawn dvd, and an Adele CD. I gave him a gift card to Game Stop so he could buy the game he'd been wanting.

I love taking close-ups of flowers. So pretty!

I'm lucky to have such a great husband and family.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Valentine's Day Mantel

I decided to get a little festive for Valentine's Day!

We didn't decorate very much for Christmas. I couldn't get to my decorations because of all my teacher stuff in storage. Ugh! Soooo, I thought we'd bring a little cheer into our home by decorating for Valentine's Day.

I guess the whole thing cost around $10--minus printer ink.

I needed 5 black picture frames from the Dollar Tree--two 5x7 and three 8x10.

One 8x10 was for the Conversation Heart Art I made a couple of weeks ago. Another 8x10 was for a wedding photo collage I was able to print for free at CVS (thanks to coupons!) The third 8x10 was for a printable. I found a TON of cool Valentine's Day printables courtesy of this link on Pinterest. The 8x10 was found at Eighteen25. I made sure to find a frame that could be turned horizontally.

The 5x7 frames were a little weird because they had mat insets. So, technically the frame was a bit larger than 5x7. I had to trim the pictures down, so that's why the spacing is a bit off. I found the 1 Corinthians 13 subway art at The Girl Creative and the LOVE printable at Sprik Space. The Sprik Space link is amazing, by the way. It had 15 free printables in various colors! Awesome.

I bought two artificial carnations at Walmart for 94 cents each. I happened to have two empty red plastic bottles that looked pretty cool. One was from Herbal Essences shampoo and the other was from Arizona tea. I liked how they looked, even if the bottles didn't match!

Finally, I made a wreath. I'm not super stoked with how it turned out, but it's not completely hideous. I used a small floral foam circle from Dollar Tree as my form. I'd never worked with floral foam before. I didn't know just how much dust would come off of it. I'd definitely go with styrofoam if I had to do over.

I started by tying a knot with the yarn, and then wrapped it completely. It was far from perfect--I tried to keep it as tight as possible, but I still had some spaces. I ended up going over the wreath again a few times to add a little depth. The third picture is of the back--thank goodness that part isn't visible!

I cut a piece of black and white polka dot ribbon and placed it around the top of the wreath. I put a dab of tacky glue near the top of the ribbon and held it together for a couple of minutes. I didn't glue it all the way at the top because I wanted to cut a little slit in the ribbon to hang the wreath on a nail.

I ended up adding a black flower for decoration. The flower is actually a hair elastic/pin. I just stuck it through the yarn and will remove it before I store the wreath.

So that's my Valentine's Day mantel! I hope to change it out each month. I'm going to put all my printables by month in an expanding file and reuse the frames. I'll try a different wreath approach next time. A ribbon wreath would be fun!

New job = less time for blog!

I've been fortunate enough to be called back to the interim teaching position I had in the fall. Yay! I love Second Grade. I've been very busy with planning, grading, and all the other stuff that comes along with a teaching job. Needless to say, my craftiness has had to take a back seat.

I'll still find some things to do and post periodically. As long as Pinterest is around, I'm sure I'll find inspiration.

I've done two additional crafts I'll post about later. I planned on making Valentine's Day baskets full of baked goodies, but I'm not sure if time will allow it. I've done fairly well with walking. I only walked three days this week, though. It's hard hopping on the treadmill after being on your feet all day at work! My water intake is not so good. A morning that starts at 4:55 requires caffeine. I'm at least drinking one bottle a day, though. I've been reading the Bible every day. I'm still in the Old Testament--1 Kings. Cleaning and organizing? That's kind of joke. We'll do our Alphabet Dates, but at the rate we're going, it will be 2025 before we finish them.

I'm still keeping my blog--I just won't have as many posts for the time being. Soooo, my new year's resolutions will probably be null and void. It's hard to make time for all those things when working full-time! But trust me... I'd rather have a job. :)