what i made for monday-lemon (y) chex muddy buddies

This Monday snack was inspired by two things...1) my craving for a taste of summer and 2) an abundance of leftover chex mix supplies from Christmas.  The result is a light and fresh tasting snack that I can't seem to stop eating!  Want to make some?
So I knew I wanted to make a version of this...but every recipe I found seemed to have the same complaint...either a soggy result or a bland taste.  So I came up with my own recipe that solved both problems. :) These are light, crunchy and have just enough lemon taste to make it wonderful and lemony.  
Here is what you will need:
12 heaping cups of chex...I used a mix of rice and corn.  Put into a HUGE bowl or a 2 gallon zip bag

1 1/4 cups of candy melts (vanilla) I happened to have yellow in my cabinet
2 tablespoons of lemon juice
2 tsp of lemon extract
1/4 cup of butter NOT margarine

2 1/2 cups of powdered sugar.
I put in all (except chex and powdered sugar) in my 2 cup glass measuring cup, microwaved for 45 seconds, stirred, microwaved for 30 seconds, stirred, microwaved for 30 seconds (got distracted by something shiny and it bubbled over), stirred until it all became one smooth mix.

If you pay attention to your microwave and aren't distracted by shiny things, you can prevent it from boiling over.  OR you can put it in a larger melting bowl.  BONUS: my microwave is now clean!
Once you have nice smooth melted mix...pour it over your chex evenly and stir it up to coat it all.

If you are using the bag zip it up and shake to coat it all. 
Add 2 1/2 cups of powdered sugar.
Stir until everything is coated with sugar.
If you are using the bag method add the sugar and zip it closed, shake it up again to coat. 
Once everything is thoroughly coated with sugar, dump it out onto cookie sheets to cool completely.
DON'T leave it in the bag...it will make it soggy. 

Enjoy!  That was easy right?  Good luck not eating it.  Be sure to share with friends! Or send some to work with your husband! :)
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20 minute crafter-Upcycled Jewelry Display Frame

My jewelry is breathing a sigh of relief today...after years of being stuffed in a dark jewelry box for years, it's finally free to breathe some fresh air and strut it's stuff...and be more likely to be worn, too!
I will say that this idea is not totally unique to me...several versions of this are floating around pinterest but I have no direct person to credit with...I did not use a tutorial but made it up as I went.  I will say that my friend Leah posted one that she made on facebook and the idea stuck in my head. 
This is a very EASY and satisfying craft to make and would surely be an appreciated gift.  Want to make one? 
You need a good frame to start with...this DARLING art was 3.95 at Goodwill.  I liked the shape and how it was constructed...both made it good for this project. 
You will need what I am calling "radiator covering". 
It's a mesh you can find at Lowe's.  It was with the diamond plating.  You would use it if you were going to make a box to cover an old radiator but wanted it to be able to "breathe". 
It's not exactly cheap...but you can get several frames out of it...or one HUGE one. 
I paid $26 for a 24 by 36in sheet BUT if you average that out per frame...it only cost me about $6 worth for this project.  So...think "who can I make one of these for?".  OK?
You will need a hot glue gun and paint. 
Start by removing the back...this may vary depending on how your frame is made.  Remove hideous art and toss it.   




Remove the glass and put it aside for now...you will need it in a minute. 
 Now when I mentioned the construction of the frame this is what I meant...this frame has a nice little ledge for the mesh to sit on...you will want a little space between the mesh and the back of the frame and a little ledge like this will give you that...but no ledge?  Don't worry...I will show you how to fix that. :)
 Paint the frame...I just used craft paint...if it was spray painting season here, I would have done that.
 Paint the inside of the back. 
 While they are drying you will need to get your glass out and trace it onto the mesh...
 ...a sharpie works great.



Carefully cut out your mesh.  I used heavy duty scissors but you could use tin snips or even kitchen shears.  But it will be SHARP.  I cut myself so be careful!
 Nice work.
 Now use the mesh to replace where the glass was and at the places where the little ledges are...use your glue gun to glue in place.  My poor glue gun is over ten years old...don't make fun of it. 



Screw the back back on and you are done!
 Now here is an alternative method...in case you don't have ledges or to at least jog your brain to think about how to do this with other frames.  Here is what I did for this frame...whose back is stapled on with a little opening to slide out the art or glass...
 It had no ledge so I cut a thin "frame" the size of the insert and used that to create my "little space" between the mesh and the back of the frame. 
I painted the back...and then slid in the mesh and "thin frame"...with the "thin frame" between the mesh and the back of the frame.  I glued it in place in such a way to keep the front of the mesh flush with the front of the frame. :)
I thought and thought about the best way to hang necklaces...make my own hooks?  Christmas hooks? Then thought of these and they were PERFECT.  .97c per pack of 14.  I found them with the curtain supplies in Lowe's. 
They slide securely onto the mesh.  If you use this to hang earrings you can just slide those in the mesh too!
 Ta-da! I LOVE it.  I just know this will lead to me wearing my necklaces more than I do.
 And you can add as many or as few at you like, varying the heights as well. 
I imagine that some of you could make do with a HUGE one of these...I bet it would be awesome. :)
So there you have it.  An easy, fun way to display your jewelry for less than $10!

And now it's clear that I need some red and orange necklaces...

Have fun making one! :)
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what AM i doing?

What HAVE I been doing lately? 
Honestly?  Still getting caught up from the holidays.  Caught up on orders.  Caught up on work.  Working on new things...some I can share and some...eventually?  I can promise that a moment has not been wasted...it's all go go go here.
My hope is that if I don't stop, then eventually I will catch up.  Right?  
If you are new here...I apologize for the lack of pretty, crafty, baking posts...they will return!
Just ask the regulars. :)
Today, I took a small break from my long list of "have-to's" and did a "want to". 
I worked on my "fussy cutting" and precision sewing skills to make a couple of mug rugs. 
Maybe not exactly precise...but I totally nailed cute. :)
This is part of my LOATHE list. 
My personal opinion...if you make under x amount as a small business...no taxes for you! 
Makes me angry every year. 
But I AM thankful to be living a life where I made my own job.  I am thankful for it. 
Five years in May.  Crazy.  Crazy, insanely blessed.  Crazy. 
Did you know I started out making cards?  You can click HERE to see my first sales on Etsy. 
I've come a long way, right? :) I didn't even know how to SEW five years ago! 
The lesson there?  JUMP IN AND START! :) You never know...
Have you read this?  We are doing it for Bible study this semester. 
I haven't made it out of chapter one (we JUST started, sheesh) but I love it already. 
The author stated something that I have always believed...in a nutshell, that most of the problems in society can be traced back to the breakdown of the family unit.  Yes!! Think about it...
I've also been reading this. 
Getting up an HOUR before the boys to read and have my coffee in peace before the wild buffalo wake up. 
You say you have no time for a devotional?  Do you have time to read a cereal box? 
In two minute or less.  
THIS is the one for you.  Succinct and powerful.

So how are you?  Has the new year been good?  Are you making things? 

FYI-What I Made For Monday and Custom Order Sunday will be back!  Soon! :)

xo
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snow and other fluff.

Good morning friends! :) I hope this finds you well and super happy!
Just wanted to let you know that we are still alive here...a little crazy and fast paced, but alive and well.
We got JUST enough snow the other day for Aaron and Moses to joyfully play outside, build approximately six marble sized snowmen/balls and yet it was still warm enough to be in a light jacket.  Thank you Virginia, you're the best!
We went to Blacksburg again and spent some time with our adorable little nephew Jack.  We're trying to get out there once a month, you know, until we LIVE there.  Visiting this adorable baby has the added benefit of being able to see loads of our friends who live in that area as well.   
Uncle Keeker (as Aaron calls him) has the most boy adventure inducing yard ever.  Full of rocks to climb and sticks to turn into swords.  The boys love it.
And the boys LOVE, love, LOVE Jack.  We all do.
He's short, bald and has a lot of love to give.
While we were in Blacksburg, Doug and I celebrated our six year wedding anniversary.  We partied like we are married with kids and took family out to Olive Garden.  While these little ones aren't technically our niece and nephew, they practically are and we love them and treat them as such.
(As a little teaser...stay tuned for next week when I will be giving away a $100 gift card to Olive Garden.  For Reals!) 
I've never seen boys as in love with a baby as my boys are with Jack.  It's wonderful to see their little tender sides come out around him, though sometimes muffled by their normal crazy selves.
Do you coupon?  I officially started this year.  I have a nerd binder and all.  My goal for the year is to take as much advantage as possible of this...without being THAT woman at the store.  I don't need ten bottles of free mustard but I will take bottles of laundry detergent for $1.25.  Do you have any coupon sites I need to know about?
And finally...my new stash of fabrics came in the mail.  Delicious eye candy even if I were to never do anything with it. 

And one more thing.  Unless a vortex of time opens up, I plan on closing the shop for the rest of the month, or at least until I can get caught up.  So if you would like to order something before then, I would LOVE to add you to the list.  Just order soon.  I may leave the pdf's and patterns in the shop and remove everything else. 

I hope your week is being good to you...what day is it again?

xo
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hoopity do da

I'm kind of in love with hoops right now. 
All shapes and sizes. 
There is just something endearing and lovely about them. 
And I have added a few new ones to the shop. 
Wanna see?
The first is this little bitty thing.  Just a little something to give to a friend.  Can totally be personalized with colors to match a nursery or whatever.  Would make a great little ornament or gift topper.  You can find it in the shop HERE. 
This one came from my desire to have a little something for the boys in my shop, too.  Poor things are seriously neglected in the hand made world.  I could, on request, make it in girly colors, too.  You can buy one of these HERE.  
And this one I really, really LOVE.   This one is much bigger at 12in and can be completely personalized with name, verse or saying and colors. :) A great way to give a completely unique gift, don't you think?  You can buy one to give or keep, HERE
And do you know what my all time favorite thing to make is?  Above is a hint at the before...
And here's the after.  A wonderful, completely unique hoho made from outgrown  and special baby clothes. :) Is there a more special way to keep those clothes in use and around?  I think not. :)
Just look at that face...special to you because of what he is made from and special to them because it's their own special friend. :) You can order your own from the shop HERE.
And for some reason, when I first pulled those little pants from the package my first thought was "THESE MUST BECOME A BOW TIE!!".  So from the extra fabric, I made a bow tie.
Just think...your little boys favorite pants or shirt could become a bow tie that he could wear for years.
Want one too?  Just let me know and I would be happy to work with you. :) I could even make a hair bow for the girls. :)

And just because I love you...here's a little coupon to get 10% off of all of the above. Just enter "JAN10" in the coupon section when you check out.

I don't ever think I have offered a coupon for hoho's before...and it will be a long, long time before it happens again. :)

I hope your day is THE BEST!
xo
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