night owl cookies

owl-cookies

These are sooo fun and could be perfect for a campout party.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 roll (18 oz.) refrigerated sugar cookie dough
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 20 whole cashews
  • 1/2 cup chocolate frosting
  • 1 cup M&M’s Peanut Chocolate Candies
  • 2 cookie sheet pans
  • Plastic wrap paper
  • Resealable plastic bag

And here’s how you make them:

  1. Divide the sugar cookie dough in three pieces. Knead the flour into one piece of cookie dough until smooth, set aside. Combine the remaining two pieces of cookie dough and knead in the cocoa powder until smooth, set aside.
  2. Roll the lighter colored cookie dough into a 1-inch round log about 10 inches long, and move it off to the side. Roll out the chocolate cookie dough on a lightly floured surface to a 10 x 4-inch rectangle. Place the light colored log of cookie dough on top of the chocolate rectangle. Wrap the chocolate cookie dough completely around the lighter colored log. Pinch edges to seal and roll the log smooth. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Cut the cookie log into 1/4-inch slices. Place 2 slices, side by side, on sheet pans. Press a cashew into cookie at the point the slices touch. Repeat with remaining cookie slices. Bake for approximately 8-11 minutes, or until cookies are just beginning to golden. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  4. Spoon the chocolate frosting into a resealable bag and snip a small corner from bag. Using the photograph as guide, pipe eyelashes and a dot to secure candies. Add the M&M’s for eyes.

Thanks brightideas.com!

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thanksgiving placecard ideas

 

Here are a number of fun and very creative ideas for your Thanksgiving table:

Thanksgiving placecards

1. Cookie – the only problem with these would be that they might not make it to dinner!

2. Nature – we found this one on www.thanksgivingcard.blogspot.com. With a few leaves, acorns and a little glue, anyone can pull this one off.

3. Turkey – this placecard from a 2003 issue of Martha Stewart is so very fun and really easy to make.  For the head and beak, bend a 3-inch piece of brown pipe cleaner, and affix it to the top of a pinecone with craft glue. Glue 3 feathers (available at crafts-supply stores) near the base. Station one turkey at each setting with a place card.

4. Pumpkin – these were featured on www.tipjunkie.com and are just too adorable from www.mochamemories.com. Read more on her site for instructions. You’ll need a few crafting tools, but they look worth it.

Happy crafting!

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get out and vote!

Vote I took this picture of my oldest in early Fall and I thought he looked a little like he was running for office… although I would say much cuter than our choices. This is just a fun and friendly reminder to “get out and vote” today. Your opinion does matter.

 

 

 

 

 

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sugar, sugar and more sugar

Halloween sugar cookiesOkay, I know we’re supposed to be doing tables this week, but I couldn’t resist. Today is going to be absolute sugar overload anyway, so why not add a little more with sugar cookies. I developed a love for decorating cookies about four years ago. Candidly I would prefer to save the calories for chocolate so I rarely eat them, but I love to make them and my boys love to help. These are a few of our Halloween cookies that we’ll share with our neighbors tonight. (For tips on how to flood sugar cookies, read this previous post.)

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ghostly

Ghostly

I mentioned a few weeks ago that we were having a block Halloween party. To show our spirit for the evening we made a lot of things… including this ghost. All you need is:

  • 3 yards white bridal tulle
  • 6 inch diameter Styrofoam ball
  • Sheet of black construction paper
  • 48″ dowel
  • Hot glue
  • Scissors
  1. Scrunch your tulle into several bunches so that it is very wrinkled (this will help it stand up and appear more spooky)
  2. Cut two 2 inch circles out of the black construction paper for the eyes and a large oval for the mouth
  3. Apply the paper to the Styrofoam ball with hot glue
  4. Insert your dowel in the bottom of the ball (use your scissors or a pencil to start the hole)
  5. Snip a 12 inch strip of the tulle and then drape the remaining tulle over the ball
  6. Define the neck by tying the tulle in place at the neck with the 12″ strip

Have fun!

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pirate ship craft

Pirate ship craftFor your next pirate bash, make your very own mini ships as table decoration or even as placecard holders with this fun recycle project from Kaboose!

What you’ll need:

  • 3 cardboard egg cups (or open walnut shells)
  • Brown acrylic craft paint
  • Paintbrush
  • ¼ cup modeling clay or play dough
  • 6 toothpicks
  • 1 sheet white paper
  • Scissors
  • White craft glue

For the step-by-step how to, hop over to Kaboose and get crafting!

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peanut butter witch brooms

Peaunut butter witch broomsLooking for a fun treat for the upcoming Halloween bash you’ve been invited to? Well there is no easier cookie than this one. All you need is:

  • Refrigerated peanut butter cookie dough
  • Pretzel rods
  • Orange chocolate wafers (or you can tint white chocolate)
  • Sprinkles

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, form 1 to 1 ½ inch cookie dough balls and insert the pretzel rod. Once you’ve laid it on the cookie sheet, press it out in the shape of the broom bristles. Next, using a fork, press lines in the cookie. Bake the cookies for 7-8 minutes (remove from the oven before they brown). Once the cookies have cooled completely, melt your chocolate in a resealable bag, snip a small hole in one corner and pipe on the chocolate. Before the chocolate hardens, dash on your sprinkles. This entire process can be wrapped up in 35 to 40 minutes. Enjoy!

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owl cupcakes

Owl cupcakesThese owls were so much fun to make and easy enough for little helpers. Here’s what you need:

  • Brownie mix (we used puree apricots in the place of egg and filled the cups ¾ full)
  • Oreo cookies
  • M&Ms (replace with Skittles for egg and dairy free)
  • Cashews
  • Chocolate sprinkles
  • Cream cheese icing

While your brownie cupcakes are cooling, tint your cream cheese icing orange and divide your Oreo cookies (we removed the white filling, but you could leave it). Next, ice each cupcake, apply your cookies face up, sprinkle the top of the cupcake with chocolate sprinkles to resemble feathers and add the cashew as the hooked nose. Finally, using a toothpick, place a small amount of icing on the back of the M&Ms and apply as the owls eyes.

(Tip: Oreos tend to get soggy when not kept in airtight containers. Plan to ice and decorate within an hour or two of serving.)

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picking pumpkins

Picking pumpkinsThere is nothing quite like a pumpkin farm in the fall. The trees are beautiful and the kids are in heaven, always looking for the largest one in the bunch to see if they can move it. For those of you lucky enough to visit a farm this year, here are a few things to look for when you want to be creative:

  • Gnarly stems – a good crooked stem is great when placed on its side to portray a witch
  • Tall and thin – these are great for large stencils and ghost faces
  • Small and squat – these are perfect for the typical jack-o-lantern

No matter what you choose, and whether from a patch or a grocery store, enjoy the moments with your families.

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mummy treat cups

Mummy treat cupAs I continue to search for fun crafts for our block Halloween party, I came across these mummy treat cups and thought I would share. (If you’re looking for something a bit more spooky, the orange bow and bow tie can be replaced with a thin mouth out of black craft paper.)

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Plastic or paper cups, bathroom sized
  • White cotton fabric, an old white t-shirt could work great
  • Medium wiggle eyes
  • Black sheet of construction paper (or orange felt)
  • Scissors
  • Glue stick
  • White craft glue

Here’s how:

  1. Cut a small section from the t-shirt, depending on how many treat cups you will be making. Start with a section about 6″ x 6″. Cut that section into strips ½ inch strips.
  2. Use the glue stick to line one side of a t-shirt strip, then starting at the bottom of the cup, wrap around and press in place. Repeat until entire cup is covered.
  3. Use white craft glue to attach wiggle eyes.
  4. Cut bows out of felt or cut a thin line from the black construction paper. Apply with craft glue.
  5. Fill your cups with fun treats: gummy worms, chocolate candies or candy corn!

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