Wednesday, June 30, 2010

High School Reunion Among Friends

For some of us, 26 years has passed and for others, nearly 30 since all of us best friends have seen each other.  A beautiful weekend was shared, however, showing all of us just how little time really passes among friends!  I hosted our very first ever reunion gathering last Saturday evening in my backyard.  What a great time we had!  Wonderful food, great conversation, fabulous memories, joyous laughter, and a regeneration of fond thoughts between us all!

It was also another great excuse (like I really need one) to craft!  I mailed out invitations about three weeks prior.  They were handmade and included a poem that yours truly wrote herself!  I went with a summer theme with the invite and then decided, with 4th of July being so close by, changed the decorations to that theme so that they could be used double duty; once for the party and again for the 4th!

I flew into the kitchen and concocted an assortment of desserts including chocolate chip toffee bars, no-bake chocolate/caramel truffle pie, brownies and vanilla bean icecream, and fresh fruit kabobs with fresh pineapple, juicy strawberries, and bananas.  I also made a delicious pulled pork with italian seasoning for sandwhiches, and stuffed mushrooms filled with cream cheese, spinach, and cheeses.  Yum!!

Here's a sampling of my crafts/decorations:

Each person got a personalized galvanized mini-birdhouse.  I used pretty rub-ons and inital letters and then used my Cricut to add names for each friend.  These were take-home favors and everyone got one!  The galvanized bird houses were a $1 each from Hobby Lobby.  The rub-ons were $7.99 for a book of way more than I needed - also from Hobby Lobby.  I already had the ribbon!

I also made some candle holders using scrapbook paper, raffia, and some wooden stars that I painted with white spray paint and then aged with a tea colored stamp pad. 

Martha Stewart gave great directions on her website for making patriotic pinwheels.  I had plenty of cardstock (plain) and made a few to decorate some plants.  They were a lot of fun to make! 

My favorite thing of all, though, was my S'mores set.  This was thrown together really easily.  I bought the jars with metal lids for 2.99 each (half price on sale at Hobby Lobby, again.)  My Cricut cut out the lettering and hearts in vinyl.  The copper box used for chocolates once held a set of choo-choo train cookie cutters!  The stars were on sale for $1 for 4.  I spraypainted them white and then aged them with a tea colored stamp pad.  A bit of ribbon and some hot glue finished them off! 

A thunderstorm cut the party short later in the evening and we never got to use it.  My son, not to make me feel like my efforts were in vain, used one stick to make a quick s'more before everyone ran inside to dodge the rain! LOL

I used a small pencil sharpener to sharpen the tips of the tiny dowel rods for poking marshmallows with ease!  By the way, if you want a really awesome s'more...try using a smear of peanut butter on your graham cracker before adding melted marshmallow and chocolate!  It's delicious!!!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Win a Silhouette Craft Cutter!

I got a wonderful Cricut Expression with all the trimmings last year for Christmas from my wonderful husband.  I had wanted one for a very long time.  And, yes, it cost a fortune! LOL  But, as the hair commercial says, "I'm worth it!" LOL  Anyway...jump forward now 6 months later and ask me about my Cricut.  I'll tell you I am still happy with it for the most part.  I'm not happy that I don't use it as much as I swore to my hubby that I would.  And, I feel really guilty about that!  But my issues with the Cricut are that:

1) the cartridges for it are really expensive.  I have about 6 cartridges and I still don't have images I need!

2) it doesn't interface with a computer unless you buy one more expensive cartridge (SCAL or Make the Cut)

Now, introduce the Silhouette Craft Cutter.  They just had to come out with that AFTER I got the Cricut.  Why does this always happen to me?  The Silhouette, oh my goodness...what an incredible little machine.  Now, in its own rights, the Cricut still has features the Silhouette does not.  My Expression can cut letters much larger than the Silhouette.  But the Silhouette can interface with the computer without expensive software!  There are no (did you hear me?) NO cartridges to buy...ev-a!!  Yeah, you heard me!  I love THAT!  It's purty too...but then again, so is the Cricut. what's all my whining about?  Well...Thrifty Decor Chick (aka Sarah) and her extraordinary blog (which I love to visit every day) is offering a give-away of a lifetime!  (okay...I exaggerate slightly... but it is a great give-away!!)  If you go here you can read all about it.  You can enter, and the sweet woman that she is, gives you 5 chances to win!  I am so entering this contest!  I hope I win, I hope I win (jumping up and down)!

Yeah, I already have a craft cutter...why am I being such a glutton?  Well, folks...I need this one (don't laugh) so I can use it to do heat transfers and get cute free fonts off the computer to do wall quotes all over my house.  (as if I don't already have enough of those! LOL)  I'll have to show you my "Peas" and "Carrots" wall quotes above my his/her closets in the bathroom.  Peas and carrots?  Yeah.  My hubby and I love Forrest Gump and the line where he says, 'me and Ginny...we are like peas and carrots...' well, you get the is my husband and I!  Peas and Carrots! LOL

Go to Sarah's blog...check it out and enter!  If I can't win, maybe one of my sweet blog friends can!  Good luck!!!