Monday, November 20, 2017

2017 Christmas Holiday Link Party

Welcome to our 2017 Holiday Link Party!  I'm thrilled to be joining a group of talented ladies for an awesome month long holiday link party highlighting Christmas ideas ranging from Crafts, D├ęcor, Tree Trimmings, Gift Wraps & Cards, Recipes, Holiday Traditions, Family Activities and so much more!    

Have fun linking up your favorite projects, both new or old, family friendly and related to any December holiday! "Any post that is not related to December holidays will be removed."  Be sure to click on the links below to see the awesome holiday projects each host is sharing! And please don't forget to visit, comment and share across social media!

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Repurposed Decorative Snowflake Container

This is my favorite time of the year to create handcrafted items! Everyone is in a festive mood and I'm excited to show you how I repurposed a snack can into a beautiful holiday container.  It was really quite easy to do (I say that about all of my projects) using stick-on metallic snowflakes and mod podge to seal in the glitter and beads. It's amazing how the snowflake decals make a bold decorative statement on the container! And the best part, you can use the container for just about anything well past the holidays into the cold, wintry months! 

Let's begin by thoroughly cleaning the can .  .  .
 and removing the printed label.
 Paint the exterior with a white primer or chalkpaint, then   .  .  .
stick on the metallic snowflakes in a random pattern around the can. I got these at Hobby Lobby, but Walmart has them and also Amazon!

Because these decals are made for a flat surface it might be necessary to add glue where it curves to keep the snowflakes attached. (I used tacky glue on some areas and applied painter's tape to hold in place until the glue dried)

Next, paint on mod podge in the exposed plain areas and sprinkle on glitter.  Lay the container on its' side and mix the beads with mod podge and add on top of the glitter. Use a skewer stick to spread the beads around. 

 Do this in sections so the beads won't fall off and allow to dry before moving on to the next section to add more beads.

Once the beaded areas are dry, paint on a layer of mod podge to seal

To make the lid, draw a circle on a foam sheet the size of the opening ( I used a top as a pattern that fit perfectly on the can) and cut out.
Cut out two more circles from cardboard. Sandwich the foam sheet between the cardboard circles, adding glue between layers and allow to dry. Lay a sheet of parchment paper over the glued on circles and place a large heavy object on top until dry. Doing this will keep the lid flat and together.

Paint the lid white and sprinkle on glitter.

Add the snowflake to the center .  .  .

 Mix the beads with mod podge and using a skewer stick, add onto the plain areas of the lid.
A large clear round crystal bead was glued onto the center with E6000, and secured with a pin inserted through to the lid.

 Sure does add a festive touch around the home!

I'm sharing this at our 2017 Holiday Link Party where I'm one of the co-hosts.   You're invited to join us by linking up your new and old Christmas and holiday ideas, too!

Thanks for stopping by

and take a little time to enjoy,

Happy Holiday Crafting!

Monday, November 13, 2017

Pumpkin Cheesecake with Cinnamon Whipped Cream and Caramel Sauce

Welcome Friends to our Monthly Challenge Blog Hop!
On the second Monday of each month, this group of talented and creative bloggers share their themed creations of either  UPCYCLING,   FAVORITE FAMILY RECIPES  or  DOLLAR STORE CRAFTS  for the month.   The theme for November is Old or New Favorite Family Recipes. 

Today, I'm sharing with you a tasty, easy to make recipe for Pumpkin Cheesecake with Cinnamon Whipped Cream and Caramel Sauce.  A family friend served this to my hubby and I when we were visiting her and her husband a few years ago.  It was so delicious that I made it for my family and it soon became a family favorite -  and it's definitely on the menu for most holiday gatherings!  The Pumpkin Cheesecake is made with a gingersnap crust, a creamy pumpkin layer and topped with delicious cinnamon whipped cream drizzled with caramel sauce.  Doesn't that sound divine?

Let's get started! 
Gingersnap Crust:
  • 1 1/2 cups (40) gingersnap cookies finely crushed
  • 1/4 cup butter melted
  • 1/4 dark brown sugar
Preheat oven 350F
Lightly grease a 9x13 pan.  
Crush ginger snaps in a blender or food processer. 
In a small bowl stir together the crushed gingersnaps, melted butter, and dark brown sugar until completely combined. Press the mixture evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan.  Bake for 10 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool completely while you make the cheesecake layer. 
Pumpkin Cheesecake Layer:
  • 4 pkg. 8oz each cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 15oz pumpkin
  • 1 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 4 eggs
Beat cream cheese and sugar with an electric mixer until lump free and smooth.
Add pumpkin, spice and vanilla and mix well.
Add eggs, one at a time, mixing on low speed until blended.
Pour mixture over cooled crust. 
Bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out mostly clean.
Cool completely and then refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.
Cut with a sharp knife to remove from pan. 

Cinnamon Whipped Cream:
  • 1 cup heavy cream, chilled
  • 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
Pour heavy cream into a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer until thick.   Add confectioners' sugar, vanilla and cinnamon and beat until medium peaks form. 
Caramel Sauce:
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 2 Tbsp heavy cream
  • 1 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • Salt
In a small saucepan, combine sugar and 2 Tbsp of water and bring to a boil.  Boil over high heat, about six minutes, until a deep amber caramel forms.  Remove pan from heat and carefully whisk in the cream, butter, vanilla and a pinch of salt.  Let caramel sauce cool to room temperature.

Top the pumpkin cheesecake slices with cinnamon whipped cream, and drizzle with caramel sauce, adding a few nuts to serve.  Enjoy!

Be sure to stop by each of the bloggers in our group to check out their favorite family recipes, too!

Thanks for stopping by and come back next month for our Dollar Store Craft Challenge Blog Hop!

It's going to be great!

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Holiday Chair Decorations

Think beyond table centerpieces as you decorate for the holidays! Chair decorations add a festive touch to any room for Thanksgiving!  A pretty bow adorned with holiday seasonal embellishments is perfect for a Thanksgiving feast.  

It's an easy to create addition that adds beauty and festivity to any room! 
You can get all the details in my tutorial on, where I'm on the design team!

Thanks for stopping by
and take a little time to enjoy,
Happy Holiday Crafting!

Monday, November 6, 2017

How to Make a Poinsettia Out of Foam Sheets

No flower says Christmas like the Poinsettia! And there are so many ways to re-create this lovely beauty besides growing in its' natural habitat. From paper to fabric (especially felt), aluminum and my favorite - foam sheets.  I love working with foam sheets because you can easily manipulate the foam by twisting,  pulling, marking and heating into something very pretty! Let me show you how I created a poinsettia flower using foam sheets.

First, draw free-hand, five petals with curved lines that meet in a point for a poinsettia flower and a individual flower in the size you need. 

Cut out the patterns and trace onto a foam sheet using a stylus or point of a pen.
Add vein lines to all the petals and fower for definition and detail. Cut out.

I rubbed dark red chalk over the foam to help make the color darker. 

Next, place the cut out flower between two sheets of parchment paper and iron on medium heat.

While the flower is still warm and pliable, stretch and twist the foam, shaping each petal on the flower.

Do the same for the individual petals.

Place a dab of glue on the center bottom of the petal and squeeze together.

Add a bit of glue on the bottom crease and stick onto the flower between petals.

Continue gluing on petals until all five are glued on.

Twist five faux pistils or stamen together, cutting off excess wire and gluing to center of flower.

I made this poinsettia to place on a decorative handmade newspaper wall pocket.

Find the complete tutorial here!
Thanks for stopping by
and take a little time to enjoy,
Happy Holiday Crafting!

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Recycle Newspaper Wall Pocket for the Holidays

It's a crafter's delight this time of year creating all sorts of wonderful projects for the holiday season!  Here's a beautiful decorative wall pocket anyone can easily make (although a bit tedious) using recycle newspaper and a few other items you probably already have on hand! And the best part, it can be painted in your favorite color and embellished with just about anything to fit the occasion!

Let's start by gathering the following items:
  • Newspaper section
  • Thin skewer stick or rod
  • Scissors
  • White glue, brush, small cup
  • Ruler
  • Hot glue and glue sticks
  • Acrylic or chalk paint
  • Painter's tape
  • Clamps
  • Measuring grid mat - optional
  • old large can  
Begin by taking a complete newspaper section like the sports or metro section (22"x12.5"), that includes several pages, fold in half and fold again,vertically into three sections.  Cut out on the vertical folds, giving you three strips per page, 22"long by 4" wide, give or take. It doesn't have to be exact. 

Next, lay the strip of newspaper on a smooth, flat work surface and place the rod or stick on the corner edge of the strip at an angle, as pictured .  .  .

Take the end tip of the paper over the rod , tucking under and start rolling the paper with hands pressed down on your work surface.

Continue rolling the paper on the rod until you get near the end.  You should lift the paper tube up to tighten the roll by twirling the paper and rod. You want to roll a very thin tube. Since there are so many tubes to make, it's easier to pour a bit of glue into a small cup or lid and using a brush, paint on the glue to the paper triangular shape edge and roll together until reaching the end to seal. 

You will need to make 34 tubes for a 16"x16" tube mat.
Next, paint the tubes by grouping them together on a covered (parchment or plastic) work surface, and using the palm of your hands to move the rods back and forth while painting one half side of the rods. I spaced out the painted rods  in a large old clean coffee can so they wouldn't stick together until dry and then painted the other half of each rod the same way. Let the tubes dry completely.

Next, begin placing down the tubes (17) vertically one inch apart and taping all of the ends down (one side) on your work surface, as pictured.
I have a measuring grid mat with one inch lines, which made it easy for me to measure placement of the tubes. If you have anything like a cardboard cutting board that sewers use, or anything with a one inch grid, that would work, too. Or, you can use a posterboard or a large piece of paper and draw a 17" square grid with lines, 1 inch apart.
If you don't want to draw a grid,  just use painter's tape to tape down on your work surface each tube in place, one inch apart, and then place a longer piece of tape over all of them, to secure so they won't move.

Once the 17 rods are taped down, lift up every other vertical rod and insert one rod, horizontal. Remember, for a 16" square mat, you will need to add 17 rods, one inch apart. 

Once you have inserted the tube and line it up correctly and evenly spaced, place a dab of hot glue where the raised vertical rods and horizontal rods meet and pressed down to seal (I turned the photo around to see the tubes better). 

See the red arrows for where to glue.

For each of the seventeen rows, continue lifting every other rod and inserting a new rod, placing it one inch away from the previous rod and sealing the rods in place with hot glue . . .

until you have inserted and sealed all 17 rods. 
Remove the painter's tape and cut off all over-hanging rods on the sides to form a 16"x16" square mat. If, by chance, you accidently glued down rods to your work surface, (like I did) use something like a silicone spatula to gently push and pry it up.
Check to make sure all over or under-lapping areas on the ends are glued down together. 
Next, turn the mat so that the pointed corners are at the top and bottom.  Gently grab the side corners and overlap the ends, in front, matching tube lines as evenly as possible.  Glue tubes together, clamping in place, until dry.

Gently fold up the bottom, like an envelop, to the center, matching tube lines. Hot glue and clamp together until completely dry. Pay close attention to the corner edges, matching lines and pressing the tubes down in place for a neat and uniform look. Check for areas that may have come apart during the folding and glue down again using clamps to hold in place until dry. You can also touch up any missed painted areas, too!

Time to Decorate!
You can decorate this adorable wall hanging pocket anyway you can imagine!  I made a poinsettia flower out of foam sheets (tutorial) and added a few evergreen sprigs for a lovely effect.

This would look great on any wall or door as a beautiful decorative holiday item, don't you think?

Thanks for stopping by

and take a little time to enjoy,

Happy Holiday Crafting!