Thursday, March 31, 2011

Hi Everyone! It's Melanie from You Made That? and I am so excited to be partying with you all!

I am linking to the Ultimate Blog Party 2011 and hope to meet a bunch of new people!

Ultimate Blog Party 2011

My blog is all about easy and thrifty craft ideas and recipes. I am a stay at home mom and have just started blogging a couple of months ago. Here are a few of my tutorials:

Yarn Wrapped Bangle Bracelet - Upcycled from a Mac & Cheese Box!

Mod Podged Comic Book Letters

I am so glad that you stopped by my blog. Please follow me and leave a comment. I will follow you back! Have a great time at the Ultimate Blog Party 2011!

Thank you Janice & Susan!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Almond Milk

I have a really hard time getting my boys to eat vegetables, so I've been trying to find some healthy things to add to their diets.

When shopping for groceries, I decided to try Silk PureAlmond. To my surprise, it is really good. I bought the unsweetened, but they have vanilla and a couple other flavors as well.

First I poured some in my Fiber One Honey Clusters cereal. It was really good. The honey and almond flavors went well together.

Next, I tried some in a fruit smoothie. My boys drank it up and loved it. I added a banana, an orange, some ice and orange juice. Smoothies are a great treat and even better with the extra nutrients!

Today I tried to make some Jello Instant Pudding with the almond milk. It tasted great, but was a little liquidy. My boys drank it and loved it as well. I think next time I will try half milk and half almond milk so that it will thicken up a little bit more.

Tonight I tried to make chocolate almond milk. It was pretty good, but I added a little regular milk as well.

I am so happy that I finally tried this and will be trying the different flavors soon. 1 serving = 1 cup and only has 35 calories!

If you want to know what's so healthy about almond milk, click here!

Go to the silk facebook page and if you like the page, you can get a $.75 coupon. If you do a quick survey, you can get a $2.00 coupon!

There are a lot of recipes for smoothies and other ideas on If you find another use/recipe for almond milk, please share!

Don't miss out on my t-shirt/headband set giveaway from A Law Student's Journey. You can enter through March 31st!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Another Dress/Shirt That I'm Proud Of

So, it is 3:30 am and I just finished this dress/shirt. I really like how it turned out and had to share with you all!

What do you think?

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Spring is almost here...time to make dresses!

So, I was looking through my closet and it was really pathetic. With Spring just around the corner, I need some new clothes. The problem is that I don't have money to buy new ones. However, I do have lots of fabric! I have never been much of a seamstress. I have a hard time following patterns and want to just skip steps. So, I found a  shirt in my closet that I absolutely love and I copied it to make a dress.

It was a learn-as-you-go type of project, so I couldn't really do a tutorial.

My 7 yr old took the pictures, so it was kind of hard to get a good photo with me making a decent face!

My headband was made by my new bloggy friend Kitty. You can enter to win a headband and necklace set until March 31st!  Enter the giveaway here!

My earrings are from a crafter on Whoopdwhoop. Check it out!

My second dress turned out really cute too! I didn't use a pattern, just kept trying it on to get the right measurements. The great thing about this is that the elastic waist just scrunches the whole dress together. Before I added the elastic, the dress was a sack. So, the measurements don't really have to be perfect.

To sew elastic, make sure that you have an accurate waist measurement. Sew the ends together to make a circle. Pin it to the waist of the skirt, making sure to stretch the elastic as big as the skirt. Make sure to use a lot of pins. Then sew with a zig zag stitch along both elastic edges.

(If you want a step by step tutorial, check out Made's Circle Skirt!)

I also made a skirt by tracing a skirt that fit me well on the fabric. Then I sewed up the sides.. I hemmed the edges and then added a small piece of elastic at the top on each side. I stretched it and sewed a zig zag stitch across it. This way I didn't have to deal with sewing elastic on the whole waist.

I am super proud of what I made this weekend! These are the first clothing items that I have made that I will actually wear!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Guest Blogger and a Giveaway!!! Kitty from A Law Student's Journey

Hey Bloggers, Kitty here from A Law Student's Journey! Melanie and I decided to switch blogs today and each host a giveaway! (so dont forget to check over here for Melanie's awesome giveaway too!!)

Anywho, a little bit about me! This year, I am battling it out, trying to get through my first year of law school. You know what I've found? You just cant get through without a little fun on the side. That's right, I'm a law school student/crafter!

Just to introduce you to a few tutorials I've done over here:

You can turn a Quarter into a Ring!

Or make some fun paper flowers!

Or my more recent- Tea party Lamp
Just to name a few!!!

Ready for the giveaway???

I am thrilled to be giving away a tshirt necklace and headband! Made by yours truly :)
The headband is my personal favorite, because its soft, but stays in your hair! Plus, I often find that normal headbands give me headaches! Its a perfect way to get out of the pain of wearing headbands, but not sacrifice the cute-ness!

So for the giveaway, lets make this fun! To enter, first be a follower of "You Made That?"

You will be able to enter until March 31st. Winners will be announced April 1st.

For your first entry- Visit my blog over at A Law Student's Journey and follow me :) Then comment here telling Melanie that you did!

If you want an additional entry:
- Enter Melanie's giveaway over there as well! Then come back here and tell Melanie that you entered her giveaway there! 

Thanks for letting me be guest blogger!!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Fun Weekend and a Great Party Favor Idea! (Wrapped Candy Necklaces)

We had family in town this weekend and had a great time. 4 boy cousins together can be a bit crazy, but so much fun! Saturday we went to Circus Circus Adventuredome. If you're ever in Vegas with kids, this is the place to be. The boys had a great time and the adults had a great time as well. We ended it with a little family bumper car action! I do have to say that for a while, Cody and I were really kicking some butt!

When we were leaving, there were some people wearing really cool candy necklaces . One of the guys took his off and put it over Cody's neck. He really made his night! I was excited to have something great to blog about as well!

If goes to show, you never know where you are going to find a great idea for a post! I had to take the photos with my phone, so they are a bit blurry.

I am going to make these for party favors at our next birthday party. Just get clear cellophane wrap and put candy in the middle. Wrap it around and tie ribbon between the pieces. Then tie/tape the ends together to make a necklace. This one was made from Mike & Ike and Lemonheads. There were other ones made with rolls of Smarties and other candies. 

This is a picture after we got home. Of course it was ripped apart by then!

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Best Carrot Cake Ever!

My mom actually found this recipe from It was the best carrot cake ever! My 4 yr old asked me to make it the other day, so of course I couldn't resist. After reading reviews, I ended up making a few changes.

Please excuse my blurry photos. Somebody touched the lens after tasting the batter!

4 eggs
3/4 C applesauce
1/2 C veg oil
1 C white sugar
1 C brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla
2 C flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
3 C shredded carrots

1 package cream cheese, softened
1 stick of butter or spread, softened
About 2-3 cups powdered sugar
3+ tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9X13 baking dish. Glass works better because you can check the bottom to make sure it's not burning.

Mix together eggs, applesauce, oil, sugars and vanilla. Add and mix in flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Next mix in the carrots.

Pour into baking dish and cook for around 30-40 min, depending on your oven. It will be ready when a knife comes out clean.

This cake is so moist and yummy!

I make my own cream cheese frosting that is perfect for this cake. Mix in cream cheese, butter, vanilla and powdered sugar until smooth. Taste and add more powdered sugar or vanilla to your liking.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Wrap Skirt for Dance Class - Tutorial

My friend's daughter has been taking a dance class and asked me if I would try to make her some skirts. Heck project!

She let me borrow an old skirt to make a pattern. It was so easy! The skirt was made of only 3 pieces - 2 halves of the skirt and one piece of bias tape for the waistband/ties. I flattened the skirt and traced half of it on to a piece of cardstock. I find that using cardstock works well because you can either trace it on to the fabric or you can roll your rotary cutter around it easily.

Cut 2 pieces using the pattern. Make sure that you turn over the pattern for the second piece. If you don't, when you assemble, one of them will be on the wrong side.

Next, pin the 2 straight edges with the right sides together and sew across. Then I like to trim the edge and do a zigzag stitch to kind of hide the raw edge and iron the seam to one side. (If you have a serger, that works even better) Ironing it will just help the skirt to look flatter in the back.

When you un-pin it, you will have this:
Looks kind of like a Boppy, doesn't it?

Now if you are lucky enough to have a serger, serge around the entire piece. If not, you can zigzag around the whole piece like I did. Then hem the bottom of the piece, which is actually upside down in my photo. Made has a great explanation of the zigzag/hem process. (She has an awesome tutorial on making Circle Skirts with no seams too)

Next, pin the bias tape to the top of the skirt, lining up the middle of the tape with the middle of the skirt. 

Turn under one end of the tape and sew along the open edge, creating the tie. When you get to the skirt, make sure that the edge is still tucked under the bias tape and sew across. Then do the same with the other side of the tape and turn under the end.

I am trying this method with some different fabrics and here's what I've made so far:

Silky Satin Type of fabric. It will wrinkle, so it's not very practical. It looks pretty though. I actually zigzagged the edges and then singed the edges with a lighter to melt the fabric. This will prevent it from fraying. Be careful though. You have to move the lighter very quickly or it will melt too much and look funny.
I love this sheer peacock fabric! I'm not sure how the zigzagged edge will hold up. It looks great though. I need a serger!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Kid Friendly White Chicken Chili

This recipe was originally a Campbell's soup recipe, but I modified it to make it more kid friendly. It turned out great and was super easy to make!

1 tbsp Olive Oil
3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (cubed)
4 tsp chili powder (or less)
1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
3/4 cup water
1 1/2 cup corn
2 cans white kidney beans (cannellini), rinsed and drained
Salt and Pepper to taste
Shredded Cheddar cheese (topping)
Sour Cream (topping)

1. Cook the chicken with the olive oil.
2. In saucepan, add Cream of Chicken soup, water, corn, white kidney beans.
3. Add chili powder. I used less than 4 tsp. Just add until it tastes right for you. Do the same with salt and pepper. I added a lot of pepper and a little bit of salt.
4. Add the cooked chicken.
5. Heat on medium for about 5 min.
6. Top with shredded cheese and/or sour cream

Onions and green pepper would also be good additions if your kids aren't super picky like mine!

You could double the recipe if you have a large family. This recipe feeds about 4 people.

That's it! Super cheap and easy, but tastes great!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Scarf Giveaway Winner!!

Ok, so since I have 2 boys that BOTH wanted to draw a number, I decided to give away 2 scarves!

If you didn't win, I have a few of my scarves listed in my etsy shop.

The first winner was #12 - Debbie from Debbiedoo's!!! I was stoked for Debbie to win, since her Newby Linky Party has helped me gain a huge majority of my followers!

The second winner was #19 - ...with Love, SB from Social Butterfly!!!

Congratulations! Please send me your addresses and I will mail out your scarves! If you would like one of the other scarves in my Etsy shop, let me know and I'll switch it for you!