Friday, December 9, 2011

Show Us Your Life - Favorite Holiday Recipes

Kelly's Korner hosts a weekly Show Us Your Life series and this week's topic is Favorite Holiday Recipes.

Since I've already shared tutorials for my favorite holiday recipes, I'll talk about them here and link to the full tutorials for you.

These tasty bites only take 7 ingredients and everybody loves them!  

They keep well so they're excellent to make ahead, pack up in small cello bags or little treat boxes (drop one each into mini cupcake baking cup liners before putting in box), and then hand them out to friends, co-workers, neighbors, unexpected drop-in visitors, etc through out the season.  I add in some of the super easy Candy Cane Kisses Pretzel Melts (I made a few hundred of those this morning!) to add some color to and stretch our gifts of handmade chocolates even further.

The best part is that you can easily change the filling flavoring extract and use your favorite(s).  My preference is to make them peppermint (these do not have the toothpaste-like flavor/texture that some peppermint candies can get!).  Jake's mom always makes her family's favorite flavor - maple.  You can also split up the filling dough before you add the flavoring extract and make multiple flavors from one batch.

Go here for a full tutorial and you'll learn all the Jordan family secrets to making these yummy chocolates.  :)

These are fun to make and kids of all ages love them.  Jake's mom always makes these for her annual cookie swap party.  I've made them a few times now and they've been a party hit.  I did a Moose Cupcake version with brown M&Ms and chocolate animal crackers this summer. 

Please go here for the Rudolph tutorial.

Head over to Kelly's Korner and link up your own favorite holiday recipes this week.  Plan to come back next week and join the 2011 Christmas Tour of Home hosted by Kelly and The Nester.

I love seeing how every one dresses up their home for the holidays.  So far we have our Christmas tree up (a real Fraser Fir again) and decorated it but I haven't had a chance to take photos yet.  It looks pretty much like last year's tree though since I used the same ornaments.  I think everything else will be out of our Christmas bins by the end of the weekend.  Have you decorated and/or started your holiday baking yet?

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A Few of My Favorite Products

The Nester is hosting a Favorite Things Under $30 linky party this week. 

I love variety so I try lots of different products.  Anyone out there want to trade half empty bottles of potions and lotions?  :)  I'll share some of my long standing favorites and what I'm loving right now.

Three of my "old standby" favorites (aka I buy these over and over and over...)

1) Burt's Bees Beeswax lip balm (the original version).  I've been using this for years.  I love the hint of peppermint.
Give your lips the love and care they deserve.
I have them stashed here, there, and everywhere!

2) Burt's Bees Almond Milk Hand Creme is very think and rich.  This rescues my dry hands during winter.
Give your hands a hand.

3) Bath & Body Works Wallflower Bulbs in Sleep (Vanilla & Lavendar), Stress Relief (Eucalyptus Spearmint), Cinnamon & Clove Buds, and Fresh Balsam.
Fresh Balsam Single Wallflowers® Refill - Slatkin & Co. - Bath & Body WorksCinnamon & Clove Buds Single Wallflowers® Refill - Slatkin & Co. - Bath & Body Works
Three favorites of the moment:

1) Essie nail polish colors that get solid coverage with two coats.  Add a clear top coat and your fingers will be pretty for a week.  I love these two colors because they are deep, rich shades but are neutral enough that they go with everything.  

In Stitches - "a cheeky blush pink"  This is not your nana's pink.
in stitches

Brownie Points - "a creamy rich brown"  This has some red in it.  
brownie points
White Musk® Eau de Parfum - White Musk

3) I love the fresh and clean scent of Mrs. Meyers Basil Countertop Spray and Dish Soap.  Cleaning never smelled so good!

Favorite products for Maximus and Brewster:

1) Nylabones Dura Chew "souper size" bones...especially bacon flavored.
Nylabone Dura Chew Bone, Bacon Flavor, Souper
Natural Balance Sweet Potato and Fish Formula Dog Treats, 8-Ounce Bag

3) Planet Dog Orbee Tuff  "Tennis Ball" 3 pack.  These rate 5 out of 5 chompers and last a very long time (even with the Saint Bernard!).

Planet Dog Orbee-Tuff Tennis Ball

Okay it's time to go make your own favorites things list and link up here.  I'm sure I'll discover some new favorite things from your list...

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Pinterest Challenge!

It's time to take something from my Pinterest board and DO IT!  Sherry (Young House Love), Katie (Bower Power), Erin (House of Earnest), and Ana White issued an unofficial Pinterest Challenge and I'm taking it!  You can link up your project on any of their sites.

Since I'm arriving fashionably late, I chose something quick.  I picked my pin of the Reusable Swiffer Duster Cloths tutorial from Sew Much Ado for two reasons.  I only had one Swiffer duster left and I remembered that she mentioned it could be done in under 30 minutes.  Perfect!

Here's Sew Much Ado's all flannel version.  Her tutorial is well written and easy to follow so I'm not going to write out the steps again in this post.

I made mine with 4 layers of flannel and 4 layers of fleece.  The flannel becomes ragged in the wash but the fleece stays the same.  I like the mix of fabrics.  For bonus going green points, I used up some scraps from a quilt I made for my niece's birthday.

You don't have to be exact with the pieces for each layer.  I caught myself being entirely too serious because I've been cutting a lot of quilt pieces lately.  Relax, it's a duster!  :)  In Sew Much Ado's step #11 you "Beginning with narrowest layer, clip edges of flannel at 1/2" intervals along length of duster" anyway.  See good is good enough.  :)

My supplies

I started sewing with two piles of 4 pieces.  When I make the next duster, I'll alternate the layers of fleece and flannel and add 1-2 more layers of flannel.  

Sewn and cut up

This hadn't been washed yet.  It'll get fluffier each time it is washed and that'll help it work even better.  It's hard to see in the photos but there is the same amount of 'duster' on the top and bottom.

Mussed up a bit on the Swiffer Duster handle 

Even though this was a super fast project, Maximus the Little Prince Super Schnauzer settled in for the long haul...

The duster works well and inspired me to also make eight reusable Swiffer Sweeper/Wet Jet cloths the next day using scraps from another quilt and something a gal from my sewing class recommended.  It's pretty dang clever and cost effective.  I'll be including some reusable sweepers and dusters in future hostess, housewarming, and holiday gift baskets.

Now go check out the Reusable Swiffer Duster Cloths tutorial from Sew Much Ado and get to it.  I'll post a tutorial for my reusable Sweeper/Wet Jet cloths this weekend so check back later if you want to be a lean mean green cleaning machine!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Show Us Your Life: Connecting Non-Mom Bloggers

Kelly's Korner hosts a weekly Show Us Your Life series and this week's topic is Connecting Non-Mom Bloggers.  If this is your first visit to Welcome Sunshine Home, come on in and get comfy!  Don't mind the dog hair...

I'm Alison. I love quilting, DIY home projects, picnics, board games, long walks on the beach...Wait.  This is starting to sound like a personals ad.  Since I already have a loving husband and two dogs that dote after me, allow me to start over my introduction by sharing a special birthday limerick my sister-in-law, Melissa, wrote in my honor:

There once was a girl named Alison
Who thought DIY projects were oh so much fun.
From morning 'till night,
They're her heart's delight
She won't rest 'till Stewart's outdone.

This limerick was copied from A is for Alison where Melissa also shares some mildly embarrassing stories about me. Any who, Melissa (aka author M.J. Fifield) is also a "Non-Mom Blogger" over at My Pet Blog.  She writes about writing novels, tv, life, books, work, etc and is the reigning queen of proper grammar.  Ok, I'll stop now before this turns in a personals ad for Melissa.  :)

So, back to me now.  Hmm.  I think I'll wrap this post up by sharing some of my favorite Welcome Sunshine Home posts.

2010 HGTV Green Home - Cape Cod
Gorgeous and functional!  The floor to ceiling cupboards, shelving, and island made me swoon.  When Jake and I toured the house, I couldn't resist peeking in all the cupboards and drawers.  They even 'staged' laundry!  :)

Thanks for stopping by and come again soon!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Sewing Pouch and Knitting Needle Roll up

Jacob's mom loves to knit and sew.  Among many other things, she finds time to knit gorgeous baby sweater sets for newborns and sew doll clothes for my niece.  I made her a sewing pouch and knitting needle roll up staying true to the Butternick pattern (I'll include the pattern info below).

The sewing pouch has room for at least 8 full size spools of thread, a pin cushion, and other sewing doodads.

You could easily adjust the sizing of the pockets inside to fit other items, like jewelry for travel or small accessories for toys.

This roll up keeps knitting needles of all sizes neat and tidy...and away from couch cushions!  :)

I was careful to keep all my stitches straight and neat.

Pattern info:

Butternick B5006
Sewing Pouch - Pattern A
Knitting Hook Case - Pattern B



Line Art

Do you knit?  I haven't learned how to do it but I truly admire knitted items.  I tried to crochet a doily one time and it ended up kind of looking like a thong...not a cute thong either.  :)  So, I think I'll stick with enjoying knitted gifts from others.  A friend recently gave me a pair of knitted slipper booties that are very warm and they have gripper material on the bottom.  That gripper stuff is priceless.  Now I won't break my neck on our carpet-less stairs.  More about the in-progress staircase renovation another day...

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