Homemade gifts! SO much fun! I'm feeling pretty good about my progress this year, so far, I still have much to do. The goal being ALL homemade except a few choice items for Sergei this year.. I am thinking I just may be able to pull it off, a couple more late night to go... Phew!
thrifted sweaters to upcycle...
SOOOOO much potential...
though i use office depot brand.
Ritchie Valens station on Pandora is helping me along this fine afternoon.No other kids and Sergei is away on a museum field trip yay for childcare trades!
I'll be back to show you what I've been working on soon. :)
I can't really talk crafting at the moment, as it is all presents, and I dont wanna spoil any suprises...so, food it is!
We got an air popper at the thrift store the other day and haven't stopped using it since. What a cheap and versatile snack popcorn is! Yipee! After many large bowls full, and a tree covered in it, we decided to get a little more creative. POPCORN BALLS!
I made up this recipe based on what i had in the house and looking at others online. (Was hard to find recipes which did not contain corn syrup in a big way, i must say)
And they just so happened to turn out to be the YUMMIEST popcorn balls I've ever had.
1/4 c water 1/4 c butter 1/4 c honey 1/4 c molasses 1/2 c brown sugar 1 c unsweetened finely shredded coconut Approx. 2 quarts of popped corn (one half gallon jar)
-Heat water and butter in a large saucepan on medium heat, stirring, add honey, molasses and brown sugar.
-Remove child from scene. -Bring to a boil and continue boiling until it seems as if most of the water has evaporated and it begins to thicken. This took about 5 mins for us, in a stainless pan on medium heat. -Remove from heat.
-Stir in coconut. (Now it is time to add the popcorn and work fairly quick) - Dump popcorn into the pan and mix till all is covered.
-Dump on a tray or work space to cool enough to mold into balls. But not so cool that they harden and will not stick together. This happens quickly, just to warn you.
Have little ones wash hands and start squishin'
This recipe made about 20 balls. Enough for a large bowl full on the table for snacking, and a 1/2 gallon jar full, for a gift.
Would have been super yummy with some nuts added in, but i didnt happen to have any on hand.
We are definitely in the full swing of holiday crafting now. Sergei's present is coming together slowly.
My good friend Loreli, who is also slightly wool obsessed came over recently with a garbage bag full of fresh off the sheep, fleece... A portion of it she had washed prior, and we sat and talked felting for a while as she attempted to card through with a couple of regular o'l hairbrushes, and hey guess what , it worked! Haha expensive carding brushes, in yo' face!
Anyway, she was a sweetie and left me some to play with and it turns out it is PERFECT for rocks and dirt for the base of my playscape! I love all of the shades of grey and brown, and that it still smells super strongly of lanolin. Mmmmm... sheepy.
So, I've begun to construct the land on which his woodland creature home will sit.
I used a felted sweater scrap for the base, this will go around the back, and I will have another piece that fits around the front. the cave is full of super silky merino wool for the gnomes and such to nap in...makes me wanna shrink down and crawl in myself. I absolutely cannot wait to hover over sergei as he gets to know this thing. <3 Also in the plans are tiny twig furniture, a felted campfire, and somehow a little hammock, if anyones got ideas for that please help a sistah out.
So far these are the only inhabitants i've managed to finish. But hey, at least theres some progress being made, it is a serious endeavor, but I am determined! 13 days to go...
i know i'm a little late sharing, considering we are 6 days in... forgot how hectic it gets around this time of year. The countdown has begun and Sergei is absolutely feelin' the spirit. I decided to go with a "hidden pouch" theme for our countdown to xmas. Each numbered day holds a clue to where his little suprise pouch is hiding. Pretty obvious clues, and i gotta admit, some of them don't really flow. But hey.. thats what i get for trying to get creative at 1 in the morning.
At this point i was clearly beginning to lose it...
and then came the clincher... i know, so weird.
luckily sergei and i have the same strange sense of humor and i know he'll totally get it.
So...I have come to the realization that there is no flarkin way i will have a quilt done by the end of this month, so I've decided to reschedule such bold efforts to a more birthday-ish time.
Will be more exciting for him to open something he can play with anyway, duh. As his imagination is where he resides most of the time these days. He has finally become quite fond of my ghetto little farm playmat which i constructed last year. And that makes me oh so happy.
It also makes me think he is ready for a sweet-@$$ little gnome/fairy abode like THIS one,which I luckily scored for $54 on amazon last week. Apparently prices are going up for xmas? SO much potential here, and instead of buying all the little premade add on's I figured I will just make my own. (lil' characters, woodland furniture, mossy felted playmat)
I'll keep you updated on my process, have found some helpful sites and such, think it is very doable. As long as serge continues going to bed at or before 9 so I am able to have a moment without his big, sweet, round face asking me to be mommy cow... or wonder woman... or sing that song again...
"jingle bells, batman smells, robin laid an egg..." it IS the most hilarious song ever written, you know.
On a side note, Sergei has been working very hard on some artwork of his own to gift. Although most of them it turns out,are for Michael Jackson. Hmmmm...
So we've had this box of Phyllo (this company makes organic white, wheat and spelt dough and it is sold at whole foods) we've been meaning to play with for a couple weeks now. So when we got news that we would not have any kiddos coming over till 10:30am yesterday, Serge and i decided it was time.
I decided to wing it on the recipes as anything you stuff into flaky pastry usually tastes delicious, and I gotta say, it was quite successful.
Breakfast:-6 eggs (scrambled w/sea salt and pepper) -10 sheets of phyllo -5 slices of provolone -5 slices of ham (we use Applegate Farms black forest) - few oz's of grated chedder.
1. layer em. 2. butter on top. 3. bake it. (350*,45 ish min) 4. yum.
Then came these delicious little envelopes of goodness. Mixed together:
-1 egg beaten w/sea salt'n'pepa -4 or so oz's of feta -6 or so oz of cottage cheese -thawed package frozen spinach
I sliced phyllo sheets down the middle for this one.
Plop it on, and roll em up however you choose.
i really wanted to do the little spanokopita type triangles, but my pregnancy brain was not allowing such computations at this time.
shlick em with butter, and pop em' in the oven.
So good. just ask serge.
Then came dessert, and by this time there were only about 8 remaining half sheets, so i did what i could with em'
Really, not bad for 1 package of Phyllo. Will i do it again? Indeed i will. And soon.