Baby Flower Headbands & Clips

If there are babies or young girls on your gift list this year, these go together quick and easy–and are cute and trendy to boot!

Here’s what you need to get going:

  • Some double pronged salon clips. I bought mine at a local hair supply store, a box of 80 for about $6.

  • Glue Gun and glue sticks
  • 3/8″ ribbon. I used grosgrain because I like it. Twill tape works well too. Satin is a little hard to work with, and with organza, you’ll likely get burned with the glue coming through. If you’re like me you might get burned anyway.

  • Fake flowers. There are several ways to acquire these. Scrapbook stores sell them as embellishments, but make sure you’re getting fabric/felt ones, not paper. You can also buy stems of flowers at a craft store and take them apart. Finally, you can buy felt squares (they were 25 cents a piece at my local JoAnn’s) and cut out your own flowers.

  • Flower middles. These can be anything from buttons, to little rhinestones, to scrapbooking brads. Use your imagination. I like using brads to hold all the layers together, and then gluing buttons or rhinestones on top.

Here’s how to do it:

  • First, cover the alligator clip with ribbon. Using the glue gun, start on the underside of the clip (that’s the straight side, without any angles). Glue the edge of the ribbon down then fold it over to continue covering the clip. This gives a nice folded edge look, that won’t fray. Glue the ribbon all the way around the clip, stopping on the underside of the top set of prongs. The bottom set will remain exposed so that we can clip it to things later.
  • Assemble your flowers. Combine different sizes, colors, and shapes for visual interest. Also, keep in mind what colors are popular or favorites for children’s clothing. I had fun with mine and made some seasonal, even. Try to incorporate 3 or 4 layers so that the flower has some depth.

  • Put the layers together with a brad, or glue them together with your hot glue gun (careful, or your fingers will look like mine).

  • Add some flair by putting glitter, rhinestones, buttons, fuzzy yarn, or brads. I used some glitter glue on a few of the petals and it turned out really cute.

  • Glue the flower to the alligator clip you covered earlier. Try to align the clip over any brad prongs so that they don’t catch hair.

You’re done with the flowers, now on to the headbands. I use crocheted baby headbands that I bought online. I’ve also seen them in boutiques and even a grocery store or two.  They are cute, and stretchy and feminine, and the alligator clips can clip right into the fabric.

Alternately, you can make headbands out of knee-high nylons. Just take the nylon, cut off the toe and the ribbing at the top. Now, take the long middle part of the nylon and glue the two cut ends together, making a loop out of the remaining sock.  Then, you can make a loop (with the ribbing) to wrap around the area you just glued together. Leave part of it not glued down so that you can slip the alligator clip in, and voila! A cute, interchangeable headband!

P.S. If you’d like to scrap the headband idea and just make some cute flowers to clip in hair (these work better for older girls, not babies), you can always assemble the flowers as above, but instead of using alligator clips, use the spring loaded clips. Again, purchaseable at a well stocked craft store.

Happy headbanding!

~April~

Gingerbread House Festival

With my dad being the official “Gingerbread Man” in these parts–we couldn’t stand to let the season go by without that cinnamon and cloves scent in the air. So the girls got together at daddy’s shop…

And made a busload of honeycake dough.

The official recipe is called Lebkuchen. It’s a very stiff dough, so daddy’s mixer came in pretty handy. My little Kitchen Aid would have been smoking with this stuff.

Each one of these dough balls will make one pan.

One pan will make one house.

Here they are after being baked and cut and stacked.

Each of us had our own idea of what the “perfect” candy was–so when we got together on Daddy’s birthday, to actually put the houses together we had a ton of candy.  Just looking at all this stuff gave me a sugar rush. It must have been the vapor of sweetness in the air.  :]

**The most important tip for having a successful gingerbread house experience is to decorate the front, back and sides of your house BEFORE you put the pieces together.

This will save you from having to work in tight, crazy places and also keep you from knocking your house down while trying to glue candy to an upright house–not cool.

Once you paste the house together, then you’re ready to frost the top. We use Royal Icing to glue it all together and Fluffy White for the roof and yard “snow.” April is really good with the icicles. Me…not so much.

So, here are the results of our Gingerbread fest.

April’s professional house

Jacob’s house–ready for snow!

december-12-2008-025Lyndi’s Orange Tree House

december-12-2008-027Lyndi’s stained glass star

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Rhen’s Angry House…don’t ask. You missed the Teddy Graham hanging from the rafters and the snowman with a rifle. It was not pretty. I should have known there was just too much laughter coming from his end of the table. Boys can be so odd.

december-12-2008-0211My silly little house with pink malt balls. Ummmm…. Note: Cream Savers are not particularily good team players. They slid off my roof all night. They get a D in behavior and staying put.

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Pretty crazy about that chimney though.

presents-029Jillian’s Whoville House

presents-032Back of the Whoville House

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Our very own Gingerbread Babies and their first taste of Great-Grampa’s Honey Cake.

Daddy would be so proud!!

This post is dedicated to my dear friend Sue Sheets…because she remembers.

We’ve been translated into French!! See this post on Blue Marguerite.

Chex Candy

Whips up quick–and makes a ton…

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Chex Candy

Ingredients:

1-1/2 cups corn syrup

1-1/2 cups sugar

1 cup butter

1-1/2 tsp vanilla

1 box Chex cereal–Rice or Corn or both (1lb. 7 oz)

Cook first three ingredients together to full boil. Boil 2 minutes. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Pour over Chex and mix to coat all pieces. Spread on wax paper to cool.

I’ve heard of people adding dry roasted peanuts, or M&M’s, but we like it in it’s plain, unadulterated form. Call us purists.

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Serves a million and makes them very happy.


Chex Candy
 
Ingredients
  • 1-1/2 cups corn syrup
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1-1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 box Chex cereal (1lb. 7 oz)
Instructions
  1. Cook first three ingredients together to full boil.
  2. Boil 2 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and add vanilla.
  4. Pour over Chex and mix to coat all pieces.
  5. Spread on wax paper to cool.

 

Mock Turtles

Go ahead–spend all day making elaborate neighbor treats this Christmas. Yeah, yeah…knock yourself out. Or…

…you could spend just a few minutes–less than ten, in fact and give these tasty treats a whirl. You won’t be sorry.

Mock Turtles

Ingredients:

Rolos (caramel chocolate candy)

Pretzels (grid shaped work best)

Pecan halves

Directions:

Heat oven to about 250 degrees.  Set pretzels on cookie sheet.

Place 1 Rolo candy on each pretzel.

Set in oven only until the chocolate is soft–about 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Press 1 pecan half onto each Rolo. Remove from warm pan to cool.

Now, promptly give them all away to your neighbors or you’ll be sorry…or full of pretzels…and pecans…and chocolate…and caramel… There will be no end.

You will love them…

5.0 from 1 reviews
Mock Turtles
 
Ingredients
  • Rolos (caramel chocolate candy)
  • Pretzels (grid shaped work best)
  • Pecan halves
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to about 250 degrees.
  2. Set pretzels on cookie sheet.
  3. Place 1 Rolo candy on each pretzel.
  4. Set in oven only until the chocolate is soft--about 2 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat.
  6. Press 1 pecan half onto each Rolo.
  7. Remove from warm pan to cool.

 

Twelve Days of Christmas–Nativity

On December 13th, there are officially 12 days left until Christmas…I know, scary.

So, if you’d like to do the “12 days of Christmas” for someone–there are plenty of fun ways.

My personal favorite approach is the one that has the little nativity pieces and scriptures or verses to go along with it. I found this darling Nativity set at Walgreen’s for only $4.99. At that price–I bought a couple. Please don’t buy an ugly nativity. You’ve seen them–where even the sheep look like they’re being pinched. Cute is so much better.

What you’ll need:

1- 11 or 12 piece Nativity Set

1- Star Ornament

12 Cello bags

Raffia or Curly Ribbon

Small candy treats (optional)

Anyway, so you will pick a neighbor or friend that you would like to give a gift to each night until the 24th of December. Now choose carefully– because if you pick someone that is too far away you may miss a night and that will really screw things up. Someone up the street a few houses is perfect because you can drop off the treat and run. Less chance of getting caught when there’s no car involved. Be sure to let the kids help.

Since each nativity set can be slightly different–you know, one will have a shepherd and donkey and another will have two sheep and a cow–so you have to be flexible. A decent knowledge of the Christmas Story would be helpful as well. I’ve made it easier for you. Just click on the Scripture tags..you’ll see.

Scripture Tags #1

Scripture Tags #2

Scripture Tags #3

Once you’ve chosen your family, you make up the bags. It is so much easier and less stressful if you make all 12 bags in one sitting.

Wrap the ornaments and put one in each bag.

If you choose to add treats make sure you have enough for the family. Try to keep your son from swiping the Cream Savers.

Add curly ribbon or raffia–for fluff. Print and cut out the scripture tags and attach one to the appropriate bag. The order I chose to use was:

Day 1 Joseph

Day 2 Mary

Day 3 Lamb

Day 4 Lamb

Day 5 Angel

Day 6 Manger

Day 7 Ox

Day 8 Wiseman

Day 9 Star

Day 10 Wiseman

Day 11 Wiseman

Day 12 Baby Jesus

Deliver one each night for 12 nights– the last one being baby Jesus on the 24th.