Archive | Christmas RSS feed for this section

Hot Chocolate & Chocolate Dipped Candy Canes

1 Dec

I love drinking hot chocolate and I also love dipping things in chocolate:-)  I combined two of my favorite things to make a cute treat for friends.

Warmest Wishes

Items Needed

  • Milk chocolate Merckens wafers
  • White chocolate Merckens wafers
  • Candy canes
  • Hot chocolate mix
  • Candy bags
  • Ribbon
  • Labels

Directions

Melt ½ cup of Merckens milk chocolate wafers in the microwave.  I use Wilton Stay Warm Candy Meting bowls to melt my chocolate in, but you can use disposable candy melting bowls or even a glass bowl.  Microwave the wafers in 30-45 second intervals at a reduced power level (I use power level 3), stirring after each time, until the chocolate is thoroughly melted and smooth.

Dip candy canes into the melted chocolate and then let dry on waxed paper.  (Optional step:  sprinkle colored sprinkles, sanding sugar, etc. over top the melted chocolate instead of drizzling melted white chocolate overtop the chocolate.)

After the chocolate dries, melt Merckens white chocolate wafers in the microwave.  You can either transfer melted chocolate to a squeeze bottle (I use Make’ n Mold decorating bottles) or use a spoon to drizzle melted white chocolate over top of the chocolate candy canes.

Cady Canes

Package one candy cane with one bag of hot chocolate in a large candy bag, tie with a ribbon and then add the Warmest Wishes label below.

Warmest Wishes Hot Chocolate Label

Salt Dough Christmas Ornaments

16 Dec

This week FabDaughter and I made salt dough Christmas ornaments for the first time together.  It was so much fun that I think we will turn this into a yearly tradition!  The ornaments were very easy to make, and FabDaughter absolutely LOVED helping.

FabDaughter Hard at Work on Her Ornaments

We made three different kinds of ornaments out of one batch of dough.  First, we made six circles that have FabDaughter’s handprint in them.  Then we made a heart shape that has FabHubby, FabDaughter and my thumbprint in it.  Lastly, we made 6 tiny flower shaped ornaments and we still had a little bit of dough left over that I ended up tossing.  Here is what you need:

Ingredients

1 cup salt

2 cups flour

1 cup luke warm water

1 straw

Acrylic paints and paintbrushes

Clear glaze or varnish

Ribbon

Salt Dough Ornaments

Directions

  1. In a medium mixing bowl, combine salt and flour.
  2. Gradually stir in warm water and mix together until a doughy consistency is formed.
  3. Using your hands, form the dough into a ball and knead it for 5-10 minutes.  I broke it into pieces and let FabDaughter squeeze some of it to help knead.
  4. Roll out dough and cut out shapes using cookie cutters.  Or if you are making hand print ornaments, press hand into the center of cut out circles.
  5. Using a straw, make a small hole in the top of the ornament to use as the hanger.
  6. Transfer ornaments to a parchment lined cookie sheet.
  7. Bake at 300F for 30 – 60 minutes, or until golden.  Baking time will depend on the thickness of your ornaments.
  8. Paint ornaments with acrylic paints and let dry. We used red and green metallic acrylic paints that I bought at Michael’s.  I painted the backs of each ornament and when the paint was dry I used a paint pen to write FabDaughter’s name on the back with the year.
  9. Seal ornaments with varnish or a glaze spray.  I used Krylon Triple Thick Crystal Clear Glaze.  It worked really well and made the ornaments look shiny.  Let dry.
  10. Tie ribbon through hole and hang on your Christmas tree.  I used Martha Stewart gold ribbon that I purchased at JoAnn Fabrics.  You can use any color ribbon, rope or ornament hooks.

Finished Ornaments

Ornament on Tree

Christmas Treat & Gift Tag Labels

11 Dec

Ever since my Aunt Peggy shared her secret peanut brittle recipe with me, I’ve been making peanut brittle every year at Christmas.  This year, I decided to try to make a cute label in Photoshop Elements to put on the bags of peanut brittle.

Peanut Brittle with Christmas Treat Label

Below are the labels in case you would like to use them.  One set features a redhead baker, one set features a brunette baker, one set features a blonde baker and one set features a baker with black hair.  You can either print the image out on a sheet of labels and stick them to your candy bags, mason jars or candy boxes or print them out on cardstock and attach with tape or glue.  I prefer to use labels as opposed to using the cardstock.  I use the Inkjet white full sheet labels from Office Max.

Christmas Treat Labels Redhead

Christmas Treat Labels Brunette

Christmas Treat Labels Blonde

Christmas Treat Labels Black Hair

After I made the treat labels, I thought I would modify the design a bit and make gift tag labels.  Here is the image for those if you would like to use them.  Enjoy!

Christmas Gift Tags

Christmas Decorating

26 Nov

I love decorating for Christmas!  I usually start decorating the day after Thanksgiving and today was not an exception!  I didn’t get too much done though because I decided to pick up some fabric at JoAnn’s this morning…that trip turned into a 4 hour trip since JoAnn’s was an absolute MADHOUSE.  There weren’t ANY carts, so I had to carry around all my bolts of fabric and could only get enough fabric to make three projects.  I had to wait in line at the cutting counter for over 2 hours!  Insanity.  This all got me thinking about the Managerial Economics class I’m currently taking.  After getting my number to wait in line for the cutting counter, I was wondering if I should just put all my stuff back and go home.  Besides, I had hot coffee waiting for me in the car that would still be hot if I left then.  However, I got out of the house, drove to JoAnns, picked out all my fabric AND carried those heavy bolts around since I didn’t have a cart.   So if I left all of that would have been for nothing.  But, economically, those factors shouldn’t have played into my decision to leave or stay since they are sunk costs, which cannot be recovered.  Hee hee….I guess I am learning something in grad school:-)  Anyways, I stayed.  I had a damn good coupon and combined with the sales I ended up saving $70.

Back to decorating… Today, I swapped out all the regular dishes for the Christmas dishes, brought up the Christmas tree and I got FabDaughter’s pink mini tree set up in her room.  Hopefully tomorrow we can finish decorating the house.  FabDaughter just turned two and Christmas is going to be so much fun this year.  The look on her face when we showed her that she had her own Christmas tree, decorated just for her, in her room was priceless!  We also sung “Jingle Bells” to her today and she asked us to sing it “again” about four times.  Then she started singing it herself.  ADORABLE!

Here are two images I made today using Elements.  I haven’t quite decided what I’m going to do with them yet, but I did buy two white 8×10 picture frames today at JoAnns to put them in.  If you want to use them for yourself go right ahead.  You can either print them out at home on cardstock or photopaper or send them out to where ever you have your photos printed.  Enjoy!