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Archive for June 2013

American Flag Banner Tutorial and My 4th of July Mantle

Friday, June 28, 2013

Geez Louise! The 4th of July is less than a week away!? Where did June go? I need to make a ton of stuff for next week and haven't even started!  Eek!

Well, to get into the spirit of things, I thought I would share with you my mantle decor today.


I usually have my lanterns up that were props from our wedding, and I just change something about them to tie in with the current theme.  This holiday, I tied flag ribbon to the tops of them. 

Then, I framed this adorable printable from Hostess with the Mostess.  We are also using her printables for our 4th BBQ, which I can't wait to share with you!


Finally, I made this flag banner and it was so easy!  In a few minutes you can have a custom flag banner for your 4th festivities.

Here's how:



What you need:
  • Mini American flags (Thank you, Target dollar section! A pack of three for a dollar!)
  • Bias tape or ribbon

Instructions:
  1. Remove as many flags as you want to use from their sticks.  I pulled mine off pretty easily.
  2. If you are using bias tape, space out your flags evenly, sandwich them between the tape, and pin.  If you are using ribbon, space the flags out evenly and pin.  
  3. Sew down the bias tape or ribbon as close to the edge as possible.
  4. Done!  So simple and you have a cute and non-cheapy looking (albeit cheap) banner!
Hope this American Flag Banner Tutorial comes in handy for your 4th of July Fun!
  
 This tutorial was featured on:
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Burlap Wreath Tutorial from Allie of The Random Crafter

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Hi!  I'm Allie, over from The Random Crafter.  Alyssa was so kind to let me share this simple wreath with you today on her adorable blog.  Hope you enjoy the tutorial on making a burlap wreath which can be dressed up for any season!

Burlap Wreath Tutorial

Finished Burlap Wreath


DIY Burlap Wreath

 If you're looking for an easy craft project this is it! It is simple and affordable.

Burlap Wreath Supplies

Supplies

5 inch burlap 10 yards or 12 yards if you want a fuller wreath
Wire wreath form
Scissors optional
Decorative items to add, like flowers, bows (jute twine or wire to secure it) optional

The supplies can all be found at your local craft store: Michaels, Joann's, Hobby Lobby, or the supplies could be ordered online.  I found the wreath form for $2.99 and the burlap ended up being around $6 with the 40% coupon that I had.  It ended up being a

Under $10 Wreath!
  
I used this tutorial to get me started.
It is a very simple process once you get the hang of it.  You are basically creating different shaped loops by pushing them from the back of the wreath form to the front. 


I alternated between the top, middle and bottom row.  Next you fill in the width of each section with loops.  If you want a fuller wreath then you can squish more loops in each section.  Continue to work your way around the wreath until you end up where you started then loop the burlap back in the back of the wreath once you are finished. 
 
Above is what one of my sections looked like
Burlap wreath in progress
Finished Burlap Wreath
 Above is the finished product!  I made this in less than 30 minutes.

Allie is from central Kentucky where she enjoys being outside, crafting and cooking.  Stop by sometime soon over at The Random Crafter and check out some of the latest posts, like, Stuffed Bell Peppers!

This post was shared at: mamal diane

Amaze-bars {aka Oatmeal Cookie Fudge Bars}

Monday, June 24, 2013

Who else out there has a sweet tooth? I sure do.  Half the time my breakfast consists of a cup of coffee and a cookie/brownie/insert baked good here.  My sandwiches at lunch are always paired with chips and a cookie. I know I have my mom to blame thank for this.  She always has some sort of goodie in the pantry, and I definitely inherited her love of desserts.

This week I found this recipe from The Hub of our Home and it sounded so good I had to give it a shot.  The recipe was a little more involved than I normally look for (haha), but boy was it worth it! These Oatmeal Fudge Cookie Bars are amazing! In fact, my husband loved them so much, he deemed them "Amaze-bars" :).




Ingredients:

(Cookie Layers) 
  • 1 C. salted butter (softened)
  • 2 C. packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 1/2 C. flour
  • 3 C. old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
(Fudge Layer)
  • 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 C. semi sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 Tbsp. salted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
Directions:
  1. In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.  
  2. In a separate bowl (or in an electric mixer), mix together butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.  Then, one at a time, add in the eggs, then the vanilla.
  3. Slowly add in your flour mixture.  I usually add 1/4 of the mixture in at a time.  Once thoroughly combined, add in the oats.  
  4. Set aside 2 C. of the cookie dough mixture for topping.  Fill the bottom of a greased 9 x 13" pan with the rest of the cookie dough.
  5. For the fudge layer, mix together the sweetened condensed milk, chocolate chips, butter, and vanilla in a small saucepan.  Over low heat, stir continuously until the chocolate is just melted and the ingredients are mixed together completely.  Be sure to keep stirring and watch the chocolate to make sure it is not burning!
  6. Once melted, pour the fudge over the cookie dough in the pan.  Take the dough you set aside and drop small pieces of it evenly across the top of the fudge layer. Do not smooth out the top layer. 
  7. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until the top layer is starting to brown.  
  8. Out of the oven, leave them out on the counter to set for a couple of hours, then transfer them to the fridge.  After hardening completely, they can be stored at room temperature, but I preferred them straight out of the fridge! 
Hope you enjoy these as much as we did!  This is going to be one of my go-to dessert recipes from now on!

This recipe was featured at:
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Taco Pasta {A Family Favorite}

Thursday, June 20, 2013

I was going to start off this post with something along the lines of "Italian food and Mexican food are my two favorites", but then I started thinking about barbecue, yummy sandwiches, and the list goes on.  So, scratch that...I just love food.

Why would I say anything about Italian and Mexican food?  Well, today I bring you one of our favorite meals, which happens to combine the two: Taco Pasta.  It may sound a little strange, but this dish is divine!  The first time I made it, we were so in love that I made it weekly.  I have since branched out and made it a little less often, but it still is one of our top go-to recipes for dinner. 

Here's how to make it:


 Ingredients:
Attention Target Shoppers! Can you tell where I buy my groceries? :)
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 3/4 package of tube pasta (I use gobetti)
  • 1 packet of taco seasoning
  • 1 C. of water
  • 4 oz. (1/2 of a block) of cream cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups of shredded cheese (I use cheddar/jack)
Directions:
  1. Cook pasta according to package directions.
  2. While pasta is cooking, brown the ground beef in a skillet. 
  3. Once the ground beef is browned, add in water and taco seasoning.  Simmer for 5 minutes until the sauce is thickened and reduced a bit.  Then, add in the cream cheese and stir occasionally until melted.
    I know this looks gross, but its soooo good.
  4. Drain the pasta and pour it into a 8x8" baking dish.  Add in half (3/4 C.) of the shredded cheese and mix together.
  5. Add the ground beef mixture to the pasta and stir to combine thoroughly.
  6. Top with the remaining shredded cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.
  7. Enjoy!
Hope you love this recipe as much as we do!
 This recipe was featured on: white lights on wednesday

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More the Merrier Monday

Quick and Easy Swimsuit Coverup

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Summertime is here and despite June gloom (the morning marine layer in So Cal), this week was full of fun in the sun.  On Thursday we were out on a boat to celebrate a friend's birthday, and last night, hubby and I went down to the beach with our dinner to watch the sunset.


Two days in a row at the beach reminded me of the two yards of coral jersey knit material I had back at home and gave me the inspiration to make a swimsuit coverup.  I spotted a few tutorials on how to make a knockoff VS wrap and it looked too easy not to try.  Here it goes...




What you need:
  • 1.5-2 yards jersey knit material (enough to wrap around your body 1 1/2 times)
  • Coordinating thread
  • Bias tape, ribbon, or whatever you want to use for straps.
 Instructions:
  1. Fold your material in half width wise (or hamburger style if you prefer that terminology, like I do).  At the top corner (opposite of the fold), cut at a rounded diagonal for under arms.  Note that you are cutting out both under arms at the same time.  I used a camisole for a template to cut out the shape on mine.

  2. Measure how long you want your straps to be.  I also used a camisole and cut my bias tape to the length of the straps, adding an inch for seam allowances. 
  3. If you are using bias tape like I did, sew it shut with a straight stitch and a 1/8 inch seam allowance.
  4. Pin your straps in place at the very top and bottom of the cut out for the under arms.  Make sure that your straps don't twist.
  5. Sew back and forth over your straps to make sure that they are reinforced.  If you do not have a sewing machine, you can hand stitch the straps on, no problem!
  6. Once you have both straps sewn on, you are done!  A 10 minute project and you are ready to hit the beach!
How to Wear it:
  1. Bring the wrap behind you.
  2. Wrap one side in front and slip on the strap.

  3. Wrap the other side over and slip on that strap.
  4. Done!

Normally I am a stickler for unfinished hems.  I cannot stand them!  However, I wanted to make this quick and easy and the material I used didn't fray at all, so that made me feel better about it.  You really can't tell once its on.  That being said, if you're like me and would rather it be hemmed, then by all means, go ahead!

Hope you enjoyed this swimsuit coverup tutorial!  Now I am off to the pool in mine!
This tutorial was featured at:
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