Friday, June 5, 2009

Fun Homemade Birthday Gifts for Kids

We had a birthday party to go to for two siblings. Little girl turning 4 and little boy turning 2. I decided to do homemade gifts. Here's what they got:

I made the little girl a set of spool dolls that resembled her family and had each family member's name painted on the bottom.

For the little boy I made some quiet puzzles. My friend gave me the idea for these. She copied pictures off the internet of actual puzzles and enlarged them. Then all you do is print off two copies and laminate one, then cut out the shapes of the other, laminate and get some velcro, voila! You could also use magnets. I actually wanted to mod podge the full sheet onto some metal and put magnets on the back of the cut out pieces, but could not find the metal I was looking for at Home Depot! Guess I should have tried Lowes!

Then for both of them I made homemade crayons. These were SO fun to make! I used Kate's old broken crayons, put like colors together, broke them up more and put them into muffin tins in the oven at 250 until they melted. Then I poured the melted wax into insect soap molds.

The one thing I would recommend is to put each color in it's own muffin tin, so you can pour each color individually!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Laurie Clark's Cherry Cheese Bread (served in heaven)

A really good friend of my parents and our family makes this bread for us every Christmas, and the whole loaf only lasts us about 5 minutes! It is incredibly delicious!!! I have decided to make it a tradition to bake this for my own family every Christmas! Laurie is an amazing woman who is such an example to everyone she meets. She loves her family and the gospel so much, and it shows in all she does. I feel so blessed to know her. Here is her mouth watering recipe!

1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup warm water
2 TBS. yeast
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
1 tsp. salt
4-5 1/2 cups flour

Cream Cheese Filling
8 oz. softened cream cheese
1/3 cup powdered sugar

1 lb. powdered sugar
1/2 cup butter (melted)
1/2 tsp. almond extract
1 tsp. vanilla

Mix yeast in water, let dissolve. Add sugar, butter, milk & eggs. Mix together. Add salt to flour and stir well. Add 2 cups of flour at a time until the dough is a smooth mixture—just a little sticky. Knead until smooth.

Let dough rise 1 1/2 hours, punch down, let rise 10-15 minutes. Divide into three balls of dough. Roll dough into rectangles. Spread 1/3 of the cream cheese filling down the center of each rectangle. Spread 1/3 of cherry pie filling on top of cream cheese filling. Cut 1” strips down each long side of dough to weave with. Braid the bread by starting with the strips in each corner. Lay them over the filling. Continue braiding and tuck in the last braid. Gently pick up the braids and place on greased cookie sheet. All three braids will fit on one sheet. Let braids raise for 15-30 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes until golden brown. Keep in airtight container—preferably your mouth! When braids come out of the over nice and hot, it takes all your will power not to eat them! However, they taste delicious hot without icing too! When cool, drizzle with icing. Enjoy...This is best when shared with family & friends—it’s almost like heaven!

I made this for a ward activity a few months ago, and it was the first dessert gone! I messed up a little in making it though, instead of using melted butter for the icing, I just used softened, and then to make it more liquidy I used milk, so my icing ended up more like a butter cream frosting, it should be more of a glaze that gets drizzled over the bread! Either way, it's delicious!

Friday, May 1, 2009


Our cub scouts recently had their annual blue and gold banquet. I remember going to these with my brothers and always admiring the unique desserts, so when I was assigned to bring refreshments to ours, I was so excited to try my hand at something creative. I searched the internet for ideas and came up with these:

The first one is "blue and gold" cupcakes with teddy "cub" grahams on them. Alright, let's be honest, they're more like ocean blue and pastel yellow, but you get the idea...

The second one is a "camp out cake". I used a sheet cake so I'd have more room to work with. The sleeping bags are twinkies and I just used frosting to pipe the little boys. I used ice cream cones for the trees, those were by far the most coveted item. All the boys wanted to eat a tree! If I ever do this again, I am just going to by Wilton's pre-colored tube frosting, it would make everything a million times easier!

The cake was littered with flaws, but luckily little boys don't notice those things!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Hostess Cupcakes...Nummy!

My sister shared the recipe for these tasty morsels with me and I had to try them. I knew if I made them for just our family, I would end up eating more than half of them, so I waited until we had some company. They were a huge hit! Even Jason, who rarely requests sweets has been raving about them ever sense!

The swirlies were a bit sloppy, but I did them in a hurry right before our company arrived. Here is the link for the recipe. Happy baking!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


A lot of my friends are pregnant or recently had a baby, so I've been to a few showers lately. I first saw a diaper cake a few years at my SIL's house, she had received it as a gift. Since then I've seen them all over! There are lots of tutorials online, so I decided to try my hand at them. Here's the result, not perfect, but fun to make and functional!

I got my tutorial on homemade by jill. Super cute site!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Christmas Stockings

When Jay and I got married, I planned on making our stockings for us (and eventually our family), and could never find a pattern that I loved. While visiting my parent's house a few Christmas' ago, I was rummiging around my Mom's old patterns and found it! It was a perfect stocking pattern! I really wanted BIG stockings, since mine growing up was knitted and stretched to fit A LOT OF LOOT! I started these bad boys last Christmas (2007) and never finished them, mostly because I was intimidated by sewing, especially with a pattern. I was surprised how easy and helpful using a pattern could be! I told myself I would have them done this year, and what do you know a whole year went by and I was STILL working on them on Christmas Eve! Oh well, at least they were finished! I am still planning on getting our names embroidered on the top cuff. Hopefully I'll get Blake's done before Christmas 2009, maybe I should get started now!


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