Monday, December 17, 2007

This is not the time to count calories

And the goodies have been delivered! Whew. I dropped all the sweets off and mailed the last of the Christmas orders - I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders.

Check out the adorable labels on the cookies - I ordered several different stickers/address labels/Christmas tags from Max & Bella - let me tell you, they are great! And wonderful customer service, too.

Cranberry White Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Whisk together 2 cups flour, 3/4 teaspoon baking soda, 3/4 teaspoon baking powder, 1/2 salt, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, & 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg.

Beat at medium speed: 1/2 cup butter, 1/2 cup solid Crisco shortening. Add 1 1/2 c brown sugar, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, 2 large eggs, 2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla and the grated rind of one orange.

Stir the flour mixture into the sugar mixture until well blended. Then stir in 2 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats, 6 oz. dried cranberries, and 11 oz. white chocolate chips.

Drop by heaping tablespoon onto cookie sheets and bake at 350 degrees for 9-11 minutes.

Go make these cookies now - they make your house smell heavenly and everyone will ask when you're going to make them again.

And the marshmallows! Oh, the marshmallows. They were honestly very easy, but quite time-consuming. I can tell you now, though, that these will be a Christmas tradition - there's something magical about them and they have gotten rave reviews! I just dipped them in melted Baker's semi-sweet and crushed candy canes. I don't even like marshmallows but they are definitely fun to look at. Maybe I'll just lick the chocolate off of one.

Peanut Butter Bon Bons (forgot to take picture of these. Whoops.)
*edited to add chocolate & wax quantities!

2 sticks butter, room temperature
1 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 box + 1 cup confectioners sugar

12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cake candy-making wax

Cream butter & peanut butter; slowly add sugar and vanilla. Chill mixture in fridge while chocolate is melting.

Melt chocolate & wax in double boiler. Shape chilled peanut butter mixture into 1" balls and dip onto chocolate. Put on wax paper to cool & refrigerate!

Now go forth and bake!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Stitching & Baking

So I've been working on (and dreaming about) these upcoming Christmas stockings. I downloaded Wee Wonderful's Elf Stitchette pattern a few days ago and have been working on the little elfette here and there during the last couple of days. I have to say, I would have never thought of using only one color for the entire elf but I LOVE it. I mean, really, really love it. Sometimes I need to hop on out of this box I'm thinking in.

And this morning when I opened my Google Reader I noticed some little elf legs peeking out over at Soule Mama's house too - no one can resist these little guys!

We have a big day of baking scheduled today - some fruitcake cookies (which I think sound terrible buy my mom swears they're wonderful), peanut butter bon bons, cranberry white chocolate oatmeal cookies (with orange zest & cinnamon- yum!), peanut butter fudge, some chocolate-dipped peppermint marshmallows (Sandi totally inspired me!), butterscotch pudding cookies, and I'm sure there are a couple that I've forgotten. Pictures & recipes tomorrow!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Handcrafters' Holidays Meme

From the folks over at Sew Mama Sew - here goes!


Do you have a favorite gift that you love to give?

No, I really don't! I try to personalize gifts to each person's changing interests/hobbies.

If you’re making gifts this year, what are you making? (Post photos if you have some!)
I'm making some felt pincusions, some patchwork initial shirts for little cousins, crayon rolls, tissue holders, and knitted socks. Mostly things that can be completed in short bursts of crafting!

Do you have any good stories about handcrafted gifts you’ve given or received?

No, not particularly - I have, however, been disappointed at the lack of enthusiasm with which handcrafted gifts were received. I know that's not the reason to give, but come on - don't we all expect just a teeeny bit of excitement or thankfulness when someone receives something that you spent hours and hours on? (You know, like a quilt?!)

Do you have any great gift compilation ideas (a grouping of gifts just perfect for certain recipients?)

All the little ones on my list are receiving crayon rolls with crayons and sketch pads/coloring books this year. I can't think of anything better for a toddler/preschooler!

Name one thing on your personal wish list.

Oh, just ONE?! How about three or four...

Anything from this lovely shop

These earrings

Gorgeous bangle bracelets

This print

Do you make and sell things that would make fantastic gifts? (Link)

Why, of course!

I'll be back with Part 2 of the meme (Traditions) later - crying baby, gotta go!

Thursday, December 13, 2007


My darling friend Meghan is absolutely outdoing herself by supporting us Handmade Mamas this Christmas season. She's hosting a series of giveaways on her blog and guess who is featured this week? Providence Handmade, that's who! Hop over and check it out - you just might win!

And I forgot to mention on my last post - the tissue holder and crayon roll patterns are courtesy of Sew Mama Sew's Handmade Holidays tutorials. Thanks so much, all you hard-working girls at SMS and all of the tutorial contributors!


or, gifts in progress.

I have to say, I am really enjoying crafting for Christmas this year. I actually started early enough to have gifts completed and am not stressing out about finishing things. I think that's the key!

Crayon rolls for everyone!

And tissue holders for everyone, too.

And a lovely felt pincushion-in-progress for my aunt.

Next up: patchwork stockings for the entire family! I just placed a big order of Christmas fabric at Sew Mama Sew and I can't wait to get started. I just might do my first tutorial! What do you think??

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Finally, some Christmas decorations...

Seriously, where does the time go? It's been speeding by at an absurdly fast pace these last few weeks, even months. It's been four days since my last post and I could swear I did it last night. Wow.
At any rate, I took some pictures of the holiday sprucing-up that our house got this past week - now I can check that off my to-do list and move on to making the rest of my handmade gifts.

I've been making these sweet little mittens like a crazy woman - they're so quick and different that there's not a chance to get bored with them. I bought several bags of vintage buttons at this great antique shop in Ohio and have been using them on every mitten. The pattern over at Disdressed is so easy and clever! I plan to make a dozen or two each Christmas until I have enough to wrap around my tree.

I also whipped up one of these little stacking-cone trees from a tutorial at The Small Object - I plan on enlarging the pattern and making at least two more. They flew by and are the cutest little trees I've ever seen!

One of Josh's merino wool sweaters became moth food over the summer so lucky me inherited it and felted it. I used it for the tree and then embroidered a little snowflake on another scrap and finished it off with (another) vintage button.

I just about squealed out loud when I found this wreath at TJ Maxx last week - it's red and aqua and green!! Do you know how hard it is to find those colors together for Christmas decorations?! Not to mention that it matches my sparkly little church perfectly and looks great with my mercury glass trees. Can you tell I get all excited about this decorating stuff?!

Oh, and we can't forget the tree! We got this lovely thing at Target a couple of years ago after Christmas for 75% off - it's prelit, 9 feet tall and gorgeous, but it's so tall that we can't fit a topper on it! I really don't mind, though.

Looking at all the work I've done over the last few days makes me realize why I'm so pooped! I just get so wrapped up in Christmas that I want to cry when it's over - it's by far my favorite time of year.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

It's contagious, this Christmas stuff

We (I should say I) have been in a Christmas decorating frenzy around here. Sorry about the lack of posts - I am just getting around to re-loading Photoshop onto my new laptop and I just can't bring myself to post without pictures. I KNOW you guys don't come here for the writing. ;)

Even Delaney has been spreading some Christmas cheer - I find these little arrangements scattered throughout the house and it brings such a smile to my face. Sweet little goose.
Hopefully I'll be back tonight with a post full of handmade Christmas goodies - I'm actually ahead of the curve this year!