Friday, December 17, 2010

All is (finally) calm.

Christmas break officially began yesterday afternoon.

I think my happiness exceeds that of my children.

The few days before school lets out for the long break are full of craziness and busyness and all sorts of activity.

That craziness is behind us now though. I'm sipping coffee in a quiet house while the snow is falling gently outside.

Things are finally calm.

Very calm.

And if feels very wonderful.

Our weekend isn't too crazy either which thrills me. There are some fun activities thrown in there but nothing that compares to the week we've had!

I have a couple of links to share with you.

The girls and I made these Mint Brownies (we chose peppermint) to give to a few of their teachers along with some packages of gourmet coffee. I don't usually give food gifts, but the coffee just begged for some brownies to go with it. John and the girls said these were delicious. I wouldn't know because I didn't eat any don't like chocolate but they sure looked pretty!

We also made these "gingerbread" salt dough ornaments for Abbey's class to paint at their party yesterday. It's a typical salt dough recipe with cocoa powder added to the mix to give it a nice brown color.
I bought some Sharpie paint pens (at Michael's by the acrylic paint) and some inexpensive, plain ribbon to make a hanger for the tree. They turned out pretty cute!

(This one cracked and I didn't end up using it for the party, but my kids painted it anyway!)

If you think you want to try this, here are a few tips:
Spray them with clear acrylic spray and let dry completely BEFORE you paint them with the paint pens. The dough is very porous and the paint will bleed like crazy.

Don't make the mistake I did and assume that the ModPodge Dimensional Magic will make them all shiny and bright. It will until it dries and then it will turn milky white and you'll have to start all over again. Use a spray acrylic glaze like this one instead.

One batch of dough makes about 20-24 cut out ornaments. I made 1.5x the recipe and ended up with about 34 ornaments to paint.

One more idea to share...
The girls have been making these three-dimensional snowflakes. They are so pretty!!!

I saw the idea on Leah's blog last year and thank goodness she posted a link to the tutorial. The video is cheesy but watch it once and you'll be on your way to making dozens of gorgeous snowflakes to hang in your windows or from your ceiling!

They're really not hard to make UNLESS you try to make them with a group of twenty one kids at a class party and there simply isn't enough of you to help each kid individually. The party ended with two boys crying. I felt TERRIBLE!!! (But it's sorta funny to think that I made kids cry).

Happy crafting!

Off to pour another cup of coffee and enjoy the calm and quiet while it lasts!


Lauren said...

All the projects are SO cute!!

And don't like chocolate? That should be a sin, ha!!

Moriah @ Please Pass the Salt said...

I just wanna come over and drink coffee with you!!!

Gina said...

We made those snow flakes for a MOPs craft one year, and although I found them very easy to do, there were just some people that didn't get it. And those were grown women. I can see how it could make little kids cry.
I love them, they are so beautiful, yet simple to create.

And I want to come have coffee with you, too.

Christy said...

That is too funny...I'm going to try those snowflakes. Here is what we've been doing: (I'm not that artsy) but these are so easy my 10 year old has been doing them alone and teaching others.

Paper Drop Ornaments: (They look alot prettier than that picture)

Kecia said...

I don't have to go anywhere today!!! Yay! Except the grocery store, which I've put off for 3 days already which is why we're scrounging for breakfast this morning. Enjoy your Christmas break! :D

adrienne said...

thanks for the crafty ideas! we love crafty here. our break has started too and this will keep them busy next week. and i'm making your mississippi sin dip for christmas eve (kinda funny name for a christmas eve appetizer. ha!) and the buffalo chicken dip. can't wait! have a great, quiet week and MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

Melissa Stover said...

we made the snowflakes last year and i don't even remember how we did it. i find it hilarious that you made children cry.

Brenda said...

You made boys cry?! Bwaahhh!
Enjoy your break!

The Bowden's said...

Neeley and I made some of the snowflakes today. Too fun!

mel @ the larson lingo said...

LOVE those Gingerbread ornaments! Such a great idea to add the cocoa powder! Don't know if I have time to make them with my girls this week, but next year for sure! Merry Christmas!

Janet Lea said...

I'm so glad you posted about the salt ornaments! I have been meaning to find a recipe to use to make some and now I don't have to! Great ideas!