Peppermint Vanilla Chex Mix

Just in case you’re looking for one last sweet treat to add to your holiday, I thought I’d share with you a recipe I made last week, which was inspired by recipes at A Pumpkin and a Princess and Daily Dish Recipes.  Even my son, who isn’t a big peppermint fan, loved it.  The big batch I made did NOT last long at all. 

Peppermint Vanilla Chex Mix - Crafty Staci 1

Peppermint Vanilla Chex Mix

7 cups rice and corn Chex cereal

1 1/2 cups vanilla chips or melts

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

6 large candy canes

1 cup white peppermint M & M’s

Peppermint Vanilla Chex Mix - Crafty Staci 2

Using a food processor, crush the candy canes to a powder.  Who thinks this is going to sound like a bag of hammers in a garbage disposal?  That doesn’t even cover it.  I should have worn ear protection.

Peppermint Vanilla Chex Mix - Crafty Staci 3

Combine the candy canes and powdered sugar in a large ziplock bag and set aside.

Melt the vanilla chips in the microwave or a double boiler.  Stir in the peppermint extract.  Pour over the cereal in a large bowl and gently stir until coated.  Add to the ziplock bag and shake until coated.  Stir in the M & M’s.

Peppermint Vanilla Chex Mix - Crafty Staci 4

Are you done with your Christmas baking?  Yeah, not me!

Friday Favorites–Quick Gifts to Make

It’s December 20th, so there’s no denying it any more – it’s crunch time.  If you think it’s too late to make those gifts you need to finish your list, you might want to check these out first.  From stocking stuffers to co-worker or neighbor gifts to gifts for a whole family, there’s a little bit of everything here.  Just don’t take too long reading it…you have work to do.

Friday Favorites - 10 Quick Gifts to Make - Crafty Staci

If you’ve got an ornament exchange coming up but still want to give it a little personal touch, try this One Minute Ornament from No Time for Flash Cards.  There are some great ideas for ornament fillers, but I just can’t wrap my brain around how she got those flat marbles in there.

If you have a little more than one minute, there’s always a Five Minute Infinity Scarf from Sweet C’s Designs.  This is a great idea if you still need a gift for a co-worker.

5 Minute Infinity Scarf from Sweet Cs Design

Gift cards are always appreciated.  Add a little handmade to them with a 10 Minute Gift Card Holder from See Vanessa Craft.

10-Minute-Gift-Card-Holders from See Vanessa Craft

If you need a gift for a family, this Root Deer Float Kit from Thirty Handmade Days would be fun to make and to give.

Root Deer Float Basket from Thirty Handmade Days

A tea-loving friend would enjoy this Tea Wreath from Dollar Store Crafts.

Tea Wreath from Dollar Store Crafts

Your neighbor might like this Peppermint Crunch Dark Chocolate Cookie Mix in a Jar from The Frugal Girls.  I love the Santa belt, wrapped in just the right spot.

Peppermint Crunch Dark Chocolate Cookie Mix in a Jar from The Frugal Girls

Do you have a young lady still to shop for?  Make her this Bottle Cap Necklace from Mrs. Greene.

Bottlecap Necklace from Mrs Greene

How about the guy who has everything?  Give him the gift of prognostication with this Fortune Telling Cube from DHagen on Instructables.

The Fortune Telling Cube from Instructables

We all need a little unwinding and pampering after the holidays are over, so this Cinnamon and Vanilla Sugar Scrub from the Idea Room is a great idea for just about anyone.

Cinnamon Vanilla Sugar Scrub by The Idea Room

If you need something a little more substantial, but still pretty easy to pull off in a short amount of time, check out this Quick Drop Zone from The Shabby Creek Cottage.

Quick Drop Zone from The Shabby Creek Cottage

Here’s hoping you only need one or two of these!

Friday Favorites–DIY Gifts for Kids

As I’ve mentioned before, technically I have no kids left in my house.  If I keep saying it over and over again, eventually I might believe it.  Now that my last one turned 18, there’s nothing but adults around here, but I still enjoy browsing fun kid projects.  The day will come again when I get to make things for little ones, but by then I’ll have so many ideas saved up that I’ll never be able to finish them all.  Crafter problems, right?

Friday Favorites - 10 DIY Gifts for Kids - Crafty Staci

This set of Old MacDonald Puppets from Just Another Day in Paradise is adorable, and if you look at each individually they look like they’re pretty easy to make.

Old MacDonald Puppets from Just Another Day in Paradise

A Lego Puzzle Book like this one from Kids Activities Blog would be a great gift for a variety of ages, just vary the difficulty based on the recipient.  I want one.

Lego Puzzle Book by Kids Activities Blog

There are all kinds out outfits and accessories to make for dolls, but this Mermaid Tail from Lil Blue Boo is something I’ve never seen before. 

Mermaid Tail for a Doll by Lil Blue Boo

If you have a future chef on your shopping list, this Apron and Chef Hat from Making it Fun is a perfect gift.  Imagine all the fabric combining possibilities.

Kids' Apron and Chef Hat from Making It Fun

What kid wouldn’t love this Magnetic Me Doll from Creative Juice?  For even more fun, add in some friends and family member dolls.

Magnetic Me Doll from Get Creative Juice

Shopping is boring, especially when you’re small and cart-bound.  Liven things up with this Kids Shopping Book from She Wears Flowers.

Kids' Shopping Book by She Wears Flowers

To really get a feel for how cute and tiny The Penny Coat from Shwin and Shwin is, click through to see it on a little bitty person.

The Penny Coat from Shwin and Shwin

I love the idea of this memory game from The Purl Bee.  All you need are a bunch of fabric scraps.  Not exactly hard to come by.  I could make about a million of these.

Memory Game from The Purl Bee

All the kids on your list might not be small, but there are some great ideas out there for the older crowd too, like these Bias Tape Shoelaces from Clothworks.

Bias Tape Shoelaces from Clothworks

This Acoustic Guitar Bag from Bored and Crafty would work all the way up into the teens and even beyond.

DIY Acoustic Guitar Bag from Bored and Crafty

If none of these work for you, there’s always the classic pajama bottoms – for every age, gender, color preference and climate.  Just ask my not-kid kids.

Quick and Easy Gift–Candle Jar Cozy

There’s nothing like a good scented candle to bring a sense of the season to a house.  I’ve disappointed many a friend and family member when they’ve walked into the house and thought I was baking something delicious, only to find out it was a candle burning.  I can evoke a sense of summer fruit or Christmas cookies and all I need is a lighter.  I almost feel guilty.

Because I’m such a fan of candles, I love to give them as gifts.  Not that a candle alone isn’t great to give and receive, but it’s nice to add a little handmade touch.  For my grandma’s birthday recently, I sent her this:

Candle Jar Cozy - Crafty Staci 1 

You might recognize the fabric from the tote bag I made for her last year – she loved it.  Underneath that wrap is a Lavender Vanilla Yankee candle, which smelled even better than it sounded, but it’s the wrap I want to talk about today.  It’s quick to make and it can be moved on to the next jar when this candle is empty.  I liked it so much I made myself a Christmas version.  Don’t tell Santa.

To make this you’ll need:

outside fabric, cut to 13 1/2″ by 4”

inside fabric, cut to 13 1/2” by 4”

batting, cut to 13 1/2” by 4”

Elastic cord, 3” long

button, 5/8 – 1”

You’ll also need five to nine squares of fabric, either 3” square for the five petal flower or 2” square for the nine petal and a button for the center.  Make the flower using the tutorial shown here.

Candle Jar Cozy - Crafty Staci 2

Lay the outside piece face up.  Tie the ends of the elastic together using a piece of thread or zigzag on your sewing machine.  Place the elastic in the center of one end with the loop facing in.  Add a tag on the other end if you have one.

Candle Jar Cozy - Crafty Staci 3

Lay the inside piece over that, right side down.  Finish with the batting on top and pin everything in place.  Stitch around the outside, 1/4” from the edge, leaving a couple of inches open at the bottom for turning.  I always add some extra stitching over the elastic so it doesn’t pop out.

Candle Jar Cozy - Crafty Staci 4

Clip the corners, turn right side out and press, turning in the opening.  Top stitch all the way around, close to the edge.

Candle Jar Cozy - Crafty Staci 5

Loop it around like it will be on the candle with the ends touching and mark the spot where the elastic reaches without stretching.  Stitch the button on that spot.

Candle Jar Cozy - Crafty Staci 6

Stitch your flower on where ever it looks best on your cozy.

Candle Jar Cozy - Crafty Staci 7

Wrap it around the candle and hook the loop around the button.  I made sure this was tall enough to cover the label on most 22 ounce candles.

Candle Jar Cozy - Crafty Staci 8

This would make a great gift for a teacher, a neighbor or my grandma.  I’ve got her covered, so go ahead and give yours to someone else.

Candle Jar Cozy - Crafty Staci 9

I’m pretty sure I’m going to need one of these for every season, just like my candles.

Candle Jar Cozy - Crafty Staci 10

Mickey and Minnie Caramel Apple Ornaments

If you’re a Disney fan and you’ve never been to one of the parks during the Christmas season, it’s definitely something to add to your must-do list.  Sure, it’s more crowded than usual.  Ordinarily that seems to make everyone a little cranky, but what we found was that at Christmas everyone is just glad to be there.  The Happiest Place on Earth is even happier, if you can imagine that.

During our visit, we spotted caramel Mickey and Minnie apples all over Disneyland, just like these, found on The Disney Food Blog.

Disneyland Christmas Caramel Apples on The Disney Food Blog

They were so cute, I decided to make a felt version to hang on our Christmas tree to remember our fun trip.  I actually shared these on Undercover Tourist last year, but things got so busy I didn’t get a chance to tell you about them until now.

Mickey and Minnie Caramel Apple Ornaments - Crafty Staci 1

I’ll give you the short version of how these are made.  If you find you need more photos and some tips on cutting out the pieces, you can find them at Undercover Tourist’s blog.

To make these, you’ll need felt in the appropriate colors, lollipop sticks, a piece of cardboard and ribbon.  You’ll find the pattern here.  Cut each of the pieces as indicated.

Mickey and Minnie Caramel Apple Ornaments - Crafty Staci 2

Starting with the cardboard at the bottom, layer each of the pieces on, gluing as you go.  For Mickey, it’s head, pants, hat, buttons, hat fluff and ball.   Minnie is head, skirt, hat, bow, bow center, hat ball, bow and skirt dots.  I used hot glue, but a more patient crafter could go with craft glue.

For either one, once it’s dry, flip it over and glue on the stick and the ribbon as shown.

Mickey and Minnie Caramel Apple Ornaments - Crafty Staci 3

Glue the final piece of felt over the top of the stick and ribbon on the back and you have a Disney keepsake ornament to either remember the trip you’ve already had or anticipate the one you’ll eventually take.  I guess mine are both, because I’ve already been, but can’t wait to go back.

Mickey and Minnie Caramel Apple Ornaments - Crafty Staci 4

On an unrelated note, I wanted to share a little good news with you.  My Spool and Button Garland was included in Australia’s Homespun magazine!  Since I’m not in Australia, they were nice enough to send me a photo of the front cover:

Homespun magazine cover

And the page my project appeared on (I’m slightly right of center at the bottom).  If you click the photo, you can see four pages from the magazine.Homespun magazine inside_Page_1

A great way to start out the week!

Friday Favorites–DIY Gifts for Guys

Ahh, shopping for men.  If the ones on  your list are anything like mine, it’s a bit challenging to come up with good ideas.  It isn’t that they don’t want anything, but a giant toolbox and a Camaro aren’t in my budget.  And believe me, if I could make that Camaro happen I would.  With a little thought and creativity though, you can give your guys something special and from the heart.  Just not a car.

Friday Favorites - 10 DIY Gifts for Guys - Crafty Staci

Guys don’t like to admit it, but sometimes they need to carry stuff too.  Give him something he might be willing to throw all those things he can’t quite hold in his man-hands into, like this Manly-Man Tote Bag from The Seasoned Homemaker.

Manly Man Tote Bag from Seasoned Homemaker

Technically this idea is meant for little guys, but I know a few who are full-grown and would still proudly wear this Fleece Knight Helmet Hat from Wine and Glue.

Fleece Knight Helmet Hat from Wine and Glue

Does your guy carry a pocketful of keys?  Help him get those organized with this Magnetized Pocket Folding Key Organizer from m_jorge on Instructables.

Magnetized Folding Key Organizer on Instructables

This one isn’t completely DIY, but I think a hand painted or embellished mug would go nicely with these Pallet Drink Coasters from HowellsProducts on Etsy.

Pallet Coasters from HowellsProducts on Etsy

Maybe you have one of those guys who is anxious to have a mounted deer head on his wall.  Until your hunter reaches his goal, give him one of these Fabric Deer Heads from Charming Doodle to hold the space.  Make the red nose removable, and he can do double-duty as a Christmas decoration.

Fabric Deer Head from Charming Doodle

Granted, you’d probably have to make it in more manly fabrics to get him to use it, but what guy doesn’t need a Doorknob Reminder Caddy, like this one from Sew4Home?

Doorknob Caddy from Sew4Home

If you’re a little handy with some simple power tools, you could easily make this DIY Magnetic Beer Bottle Opener from Décor and the Dog.

DIY Magnetic Beer Bottle Opener from Decor and the Dog

For the really ambitious, try this Homemade Skee Ball Game from seamster on Instructables.  Better yet, gather the supplies and give it to him as a make-your-own kit.

Homemade Skee Ball Game on Instructables

Again, some camouflage or brown fabric might be needed here, but once you find that, this Double Bike Saddle Bag from Sovanisa would be a great gift for your biker.

Double Bike Saddle Bag from Sovanisa

Guys.  Bacon.  Candied Bacon with Pecans from Food Stories.

Candied Bacon with Pecans from Food Stories

Less than three weeks until Christmas!

Mickey Mason Jar Lid Ornament

When my daughter graduated from high school, her gift from us was a family trip to Disneyland and she was allowed to bring a friend.  This summer it’s my son’s turn.  We told him we’d still bring his sister, since he got to go on her trip, even though she’ll be married by then.  So who did my son choose as his friend to bring along?  His soon-to-be brother-in-law!  Some days I think the kids are all more excited about that trip to Disneyland than the wedding.

Since we have a Disney trip on the calendar, I thought it would be fun to make a Christmas ornament to count down to it.  Anticipation is half the fun. 

Mickey Mason Jar Lid Ornament - Crafty Staci 2

This ornament is a great way to reuse old mason jar lids and is easy enough to make with the kids.  For the full instructions, visit me over at the Undercover Tourist blog!

Last Day of Holiday Sale 2013

I’m wrapping up the final day of my sale in both my Etsy and Zibbet shops today, so if you have gifts left to buy, now’s the time!

Black Friday Weekend Sale - CraftyStaci

This has been a big year for customizing, which means the selection of ready-to-ship items is still good.

Lens Cap Holders:

These are still in stock in all three sizes, including some with a small internal pocket to hold an extra memory card.

Lens Cap Holders - CraftyStaci

Memory Card Wallets:

I have these in both sizes, although right now there’s only one for SD cards left, but several for CF cards.

Memory Card Wallets - CraftyStaci

Business Card Holders:

There are a few of these in stock.

Business Card Holders - CraftyStaci

Camera Straps:

I have several straps in the around-the-neck style.

Camera Straps - CraftyStaci

And some for use around your wrist.

DSLR Wrist Straps - CraftyStaci

Coffee Cup Sleeves:

There’s still a great selection of these available, including some of my novelty shaped patterns and camouflage, which includes a donation of the proceeds to Wounded Warrior.

Coffee Cup Sleeves - CraftyStaci

Ninja Monkey Bags:

A few of these are still available too.

Ninja Monkey Bags - CraftyStaci

Jars, Lids, Straws and Coasters:

Everything here is stocked up and ready to ship.

Drinking Jar, Steel Straw and Mason Coaster - CraftyStaci

The sale and coupon code both end at 1 am Pacific time tonight.  Happy shopping!

Friday Favorites–DIY Christmas Decor

In my house, the day after Thanksgiving is reserved for eating leftovers, listening to the Christmas music my daughter complains about until one second after turkey day is over and doing a little shopping online.  The biggest, most important part of the day, though, is getting out the Christmas decorations.  I look forward to it all month, and it usually takes us a couple of days to get everything in its place.  That doesn’t even include the tree, which usually comes a week or so later.  When it comes to Christmas, I’m kind of a big kid.

10 DIY Christmas Decor Projects - Crafty Staci

For many years we had an artificial tree, so we put it up at the same time as everything else.  Now we’re back to a real one.  We have a beautiful red, swirly cast iron tree stand, so I kind of hate covering it up with a tree skirt.  However, this black and white beauty from Project Run and Play could make me change my mind.

Tree Skirt - Project Run Play

With a little planning ahead, this year’s tree could be used to make this Wood Slice and Burlap Christmas Wreath from Finding Home for next year.

WoodSliceandBurlapChristmasWreath - Finding Home Online

Do you remember the days when America Online used to send a CD in the mail about twice a month advertising their service?  I saved those for a craft project and ended up making ornaments with my nieces and nephews.  Extra CDs are less of a problem these days, but I’m going to have to scrounge up a few to make these ornaments from Crème de la Craft.

CD Ornaments - Creme de la Craft

Pillow covers are an easy, temporary way to decorate for the holidays, like this Holly Wreath Pillow on Skip to my Lou.

Holly Wreath Pillow - Skip to my Lou

I’d love to try making this Wire Wrapped Joy Ornament from The Crafty Sisters.

Wire Ornament - The Crafty Sisters

Makedo shares a template for making this cardboard tree on Instructables.

Cardboard Christmas Tree - Makedo on Instructables

I have a plastic mistletoe kissing ball, but this felt version from Apartment Therapy is so much prettier.

Mistletoe Kissing Ball - Apartment Therapy

These Quick and Easy M&M and Mike and Ike Christmas Lights from Hungry Happenings would be cute on so many Christmas goodies.

The Zipper Ornament from A Creative Princess is super easy to make and would be a fun gift tag.

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERA

There is nothing sweeter than a felt ornament, and this Nativity Stable from Wild Olive is just perfect.

Felt Nativity - Wild Olive

If you’re shopping in between your decorating today, don’t forget about my Black Friday Weekend Sale on Etsy and Zibbet!