Crafty Moments

H E R B S

I have a major soft spot for fresh herbs. Really anything out of the garden. Last year we installed two are garden boxes in our yard and it was shocking how well they did! We had a crazy amount of very large cucumbers (I mean like five new ones daily, it was slightly out of hand), a TON of homegrown potatoes, carrots and green peppers…. it was a beautifully, flourishing garden. We had way too much kale and swiss chard and will probably rethink that this year but how are you to know before ya know right! Anyways, every year I like to make a valiant effort to have fresh herbs growing on hand. Since it is still a bit chilly outside, I thought keeping these babies indoors would be best, and why not on my kitchen window sill. That way they are nice and accessible for all of your cooking needs. This was such a simple task that even those who lack a green thumb can easily obtain one. Here is what you need:

Herbs of choice: I chose chives, parsley and cilantro. I LOVE cilantro in guacamole and tacos so it’s a staple in this house since we eat them so often.

Pots or some sort of planter (you will need one that is a good size for the amount of herbs you have chosen)

Potting soil to top up if needed

Spray bottle

Start by filling my kitchen sink with about 2 inches of luke warm/room temperature water. Gently remove herbs from the plastic containers you purchased them in. Place them in the sink of water, sitting upright, and let them soak up the water for about a minute. Remove from water and gently loosen the root. Place in your new pot and add potting soil as needed. Place in a bright place with a good amount of sunlight. Trim herbs as you use them in your cooking to keep them growing evenly. Happy planting!

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Off To The Fair

My it has been a busy spring so far! I am not sure if I mentioned it recently but I have been working my pregnant butt off on the sewing machine lately. I love sewing! Finding the time to get projects done, well that is an entirely different story. I find that if you set a deadline though it definitely helps get the ball rolling. Which is exactly what I did. Back in winter, I enrolled my already registered yet slightly inactive company in a craft fair. It was supposed to be a really big one too supporting the BCSPCA (animal rescue, care and adoption). I figured enrolling in winter with the deadline of the fair being May 1st, I would have plenty of time to get organized and create a bit of inventory to sell. It is a dream of mine to make money off of selling baby creations that I make on my sewing machine. If I am being totally honest, I knew deep down inside I would probably get nothing done until my mum moved up to Kamloops as it is next to impossible to use a sewing machine around a curious toddler. Do it when she naps right? Oh yea my kid doesn’t nap regularly! So that was fine. Wait for Grandma to babysit and that would give me exactly one month to get things done. Well that in the end turned into three weeks. But I did it! I had everything from bandana bibs to receiving blankets, to large throw & crib bedding blankets and even some baby mobiles and headbands! I LOVE the items I made – so much it can be hard to put a price on them. But I did and was ready to sell! So that is what was keeping me busy over the weekend. Participating in the craft fair and getting word about my little baby business out. I would absolutely LOVE it if you checked it out too.You can visit my Facebook Page HERE and coming soon will be Instagram and maybe even a website. I know in starting these sort of things it is best to be organized and get all your ducks in a row before releasing it all to the public and online. I now disagree with that. I thought that way forever and I was just never really STARTING. With this baby line, DEER BABY, once I started one thing it sort of domino rolled into the next thing and before you know it, I was in full swing of getting shit done! It may have been done a little sideways but the important thing is that things are happening and I am trying. Next I need to look into tackling Etsy and how I can sell online….. but quite frankly I am a little nervous! Also planning to set up at our local farmers market. So there is A LOT going on over here! Not to mention that darling little angel of mine! She is a mile a minute these days. So chatty, though not quite speaking English yet. Just full of smiles and giggles and curiosity too. Baby Boy has been busy in my belly too; kicking up a storm all of the time and getting rather HUGE. I was at the supermarket today and the cashier flat out refused to believe that I had two more months to go in this pregnancy. Apparently I look ready to pop already. Lovely! Well that is it for me tonight as it is late and I am still exhausted from a weekend of craft fair-ing. Check out some of the debut items though! I would love to hear your thoughts. There are just pictures I took from the craft fair; there are some fantastic product shots on the FB site. Good night everyone!

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Valentines Day Fun

Valentines Day is this weekend! The holiday of looooooooove! I have always loved this holiday. Not that I have ever had an over-the-top, full of romance day…. Before I met my husband this day was definitely NOT one to look forward to. In fact, I would often make a cocktail date with other single girlfriends and get way too intoxicated on wine. But Henry and I have had a few good ones now for sure. For the life of me, I cannot remember last year’s Valentines Day. Hallie would have been four months old so perhaps I was still in sleep deprivation HELL and not able to recall all, or many for that matter, moments. It’s also very close to my birthday so perhaps it was overshadowed by that. Who knows?! One thing I do know that it was a day where we celebrated our commitment to each other in our marriage, something we try to remember to do as often as we possibly can! I would say daily but life gets in the way, let’s be honest. This year, we will be visiting family in Grand Forks for the weekend so we will be spending Valentines Day there. Won’t be a very romantic day between hubby and wife but I am determined to make it a great day for everyone, babies included. Hallie is still too young but she has noticed the abundance of hearts in our home, and even assisted in making Valentines this afternoon. Girlfriend definitely has a thing for arts & crafts, just like her momma! Now if she would just behave on our shopping excursions to Michaels…

Have you taken a look on Pinterest for Valentines related pins? So many cute ideas! This Reeces Pieces idea would be perfect for my husband as he LOVES those chocolates to bits and pieces (see what I did there?!). I am also LOVING this decor idea with the branches and tiny pink hearts. Bit late now and I do not have any spare branches on hand, believe it or not, but a next year craft for sure! Lastly, these hearts are just cute to boot. I don’t know what I would do with them (maybe assemble a garland over the fireplace?) but I think they would be super fun and easy to make. Aside from a few heart garlands and some festive bouquets, my house is on the minimalist side for V-Day decor. Shame on me, better luck next holiday! What sort of decor have you selected to celebrate the loooooove?

Though today was supposed to involve road trip prep and packing, Hallie and I spent most of the day cuddling, trying to get rid of our annoying colds. Hers more than mine unfortunately. FYI, when your child is not feeling well, maybe avoid giving them milk… It’s a real treat to have a curdled, cottage-cheese like liquid hurtled all over you as soon as you change out of the last shirt she spread her breakfast all over. So much for avoiding doing laundry before we leave! Poor kid… Despite that incident, she was mostly all smiles for the day. It’s amazing what Curious George can do. Between cuddles, I managed to get some serious baking and card making done. We made DELICIOUS strawberry shortcake cookies with chocolate chips (recipe here), home-cooked sweet potato for Hallie’s dinners this weekend, and cheese and chive scones with a melted butter glaze. YUM! They were intended for the drive up but I promise you they won’t last. As far as card making went, Hallie and I made Valentines for daddy! She contributed by ripping up pieces of pink paper for hers. It was so much fun! I think we have definitely started a new tradition of making our own Valentines versus buying them. Which also makes me curious about Valentines Day traditions. Do you have any that you repeat every year with your husband or family? I would love to start a few! Looks like I have something else to search for on Pinterest….. !!!!
Have a wonderfully romantic Valentines Day weekend everyone!

COOKIES!!
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First time @ making scones…. Filing under easy and delicious!
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Valentines Day Card Making – courtesy of Pinterest ideas of course!
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DIY Spice Rack: Gifts For The Foodie In Your Life

I was determined this year, as I am most years, to make some of my gifts. I love making gifts for people. The only thin line you need to be weary of here is that you still want it to be a gift they can actually use. I am sure a lot of my crafty gifts back when I was younger came more from being thoughtful versus thinking of actual functionality. I came up with many ideas for people on my list this year, all of which are cute, easy to construct at home, and will actually go to good use for the recipient. One in particular I have decided to share today.

My Dad loves being in the kitchen. When we used to live closer to him, we would go over at least once a month for a feast of yummy appetizers and his famous home cooked rack of ribs. He even used to host a ‘rib-off’ in the summertime. Though he didn’t always win, I have forever been a fan of his bbq’d creations. I wanted to make him something that he could use not only on meat, but in all of his stovetop concoctions. I found the idea of making your own seasonings on Pinterest, and adapted it to make this little craft you see below. Quite simple and allows you to get creative in your search for different spice recipes. My husband built me the miniature crate that holds them – unfortunately until I get confident on a saw, that part will remain designated to him. Saws and power tools are my springtime goals.

In the meantime, I hope this helps you with your DIY gift ideas, perfect for any foodie lover on your list.

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Supplies:

Empty Spice Jars – I bought mine at the dollar store. They are dollar store quality too I have discovered a little too late. Bed Bath & Beyond carry a variety too that look like they may be a bit higher quality if you want to spend the extra dollars.
A variety of spices to mix – Google homemade seasonings to decide on your recipes and go from there.
Tags & Twine – these are for labeling your spices and including food pairing recommendations.
A miniature wooden crate – any handy husband should be able to build this for you.

Combine your spices and seasonings according to the recipes. Funnel into your empty spice jars. Label your tags and attach with twine. So easy!

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DIY Sharpie Mugs

With the holiday season just around the corner, thoughts of gifts for others keep creeping into my mind. Like many others, money is tight for us this Christmas. We love getting into the spirit, decorating the home, and making sure we eat lots of yummy holiday-inspired treats, but we do try to go easy in the actual gift department. It’s so easy to go overboard with spending and we are trying to curb that this year, focusing more on the experience of Christmas. With all of that being said, I have turned to Pinterest for some inexpensive DIY gifts. There are so many ideas but what that caught my eye in particular was the DIY SHARPIE MUG. There are so many adorable ways to complete this craft, and not only was it a piece of cake, it took me all of twenty minutes to make three of them (perfect nap time craft!). I am going to get a few more mugs to try out different designs though. This being my first attempt I definitely see room for improvement and wouldn’t mind putting a bit more effort into the fonts. I just free-handed these puppies and quite frankly, you can tell! Either way though, loads of fun and super simple. They would make great gifts with a miniature Baileys bottle tucked inside with some coffee grinds, or perhaps a nice tea selection. I know a few people on my gift list who are going to be receiving one of these, perfectly tailored to them.

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Supplies:

Sharpie – a nice new one with a sharp tip

Plain Mug – needs to be oven proof. Many mugs will indicate this on the bottom. Ceramic is what I chose to try and it worked out well.

Make sure your mugs are wiped clean and dry. Make your design on the mug with your Sharpie. Depending on the color of the mug, you may want to use different coloured Sharpies (images of silver and gold are now dancing in my head!)

Place mugs into the over and set to 350 degrees. You want to place the mugs in before it heats up so that they warm up with the oven and this will prevent cracking. Heat in the oven for 30 minutes. At the end of 30 minutes, turn the oven off but leaves your mugs in there to cool down with the oven, again prevent cracking. This will set your design so that you can wash your mug after use and it won’t effect the design. My research indicates this should make the mug safe to wash in the dishwasher, however I will not encourage that until I have actually done it myself. For gifting, tie a cute homemade tag with twine to the handle and indicate care instructions. CHEERS!

Halloween Has Arrived!

Well it’s here! Yesterday, being the Eve of Halloween, I always find to be a bit more exciting but nothing beats the actual day of Halloween either. The weather is extra spooky today too, blustery with leaves blowing all over the place. Really adds to the effect of it all!

We got our pumpkins all carved up last night and much like every other year, mine were shockingly bad and hubby’s pumpkin’s resembled the work of Picasso. Carving is not my forte. Nonetheless they are out on the front steps ready to be lit up this evening. I had a few plans for today including heading to the library for spooky story time however my precious little baby is pretty much not down with ANYTHING. Guess she spent all of her good behaviour yesterday. Yesterday went perfectly. Happy baby, easy and long nap time allowing momma to bake cookies and get ready for our halloween party downtown, great participation from a happy baby at the party and then top it all off with a very smooth bedtime. Today nothing is cheering this kid up and naps certainly are not happy. Full moon perhaps? So for now we are just playing and puttering around the house, praying for naps and departing cold and windy walks. Is it time for a Halloween cocktail yet? Nope. It is only 11:30… come on!

Since today is presenting no peace and quiet, I am going to share some fun Halloween photos with you rather than a lengthy post. I hope you all have a wonderfully festive and safe Halloween, full of treats and smiles from your little ones. Hopefully I get a smile out of mine today too! Happy Halloween!

Here are some shots of our Halloween decor during the daytime:
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We added a lot more to it all but it’s too cold outside right now for me to take any updated photos. Sorry!
Here are some nighttime shots – much spookier!
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Yesterday at our Halloween Party at Lizzie Bits Baby Boutique in Downtown Kamloops
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(I am Bambi! Can’t believe I achieved this during a single nap time)

Adorned in our festive gear in the spirit of the season. Thanks you to Sa Sea Boutique, loving my ‘Put A Spell On You’ Top.
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(THAT is the face I am dealing with today!)

(And WHY I am eating many of these today!)
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Enjoy your Halloween everyone!
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Decorating The Front Porch For Fall

If you read my last post, well then you know we have been in full force around the house with decorating for fall. I am a little worried as we have yet to make our annual trip to the pumpkin patch. This means more pumpkins are coming! I will need to do some strategic rearranging no doubt of the already existing decor! We have completed the finishing touches on our front porch though and that is what I am sharing with you today! I have always wanted a porch. We had a small one in our townhouse last year however it was tucked around the side of the house and it was rare that anyone saw the display. My house now has a stately front porch which is the first thing you see when you look at the house. Naturally I had to put together some fun ideas in honour of having that space. When we got married, I invested in four vintage crates as our wedding theme was quite rustic. These crates are perfect for repurposing during the fall and winter season. I started with those and a few fall mums. I am not sure if I was luckily to pick the bad bunch or I simply killed them but my  mums have died. A sad, dry and lonely looking death. So I moved on to gourds (big surprise), a couple of craft pumpkins from Michaels and small cooking pumpkins from the grocery store. Like I said, we still need to visit the pumpkin patch. We will absolutely be getting some larger, warty and witchy looking pumpkins to join in on this space. The sign was built by my husband and with some spray paint, stencilled letters and your standard burlap garland, it added the perfect touch to a very lonely looking corner. Lastly was the wreath. It is not my usual style when it comes to wreathes but it adds some festive color to the door and seems to work well with everything else.

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No holiday decor is complete without a little chalkboard art either. I can’t wait to come up with some spooky sketches in honour of Halloween as well. It’s also time to break out Hocus Pocus and watch it on repeat!

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I couldn’t resist sharing this picture. My tiny baby was a week old and we squeezed in a pumpkin patch visit with her. It will be so fun to compare this to this year’s pics and see how much she has grown. I also might cry a little!

Hope you are enjoying the start to this festive time of year!