Friday, December 18, 2009

Christmas Cookies

We rolled sugar cookie dough to 1/4 inch thick on a floured surface and cut them with flour-dusted cookie-cutters (to avoid sticking). After baking we decorated with red, green and white icing and chocolate chips and sprinkles.

Note: The cookies shaped like gingerbread men were the most fun to decorate, followed by star-shaped cookies. Other shapes such as Christmas trees did not allow for as much creative freedom. Additionally, the slim width of the cookies shaped like candy canes made them cook a bit more than the other shapes, meaning cookies that were more dry and less fun to eat.

Thursday, December 10, 2009


Procedure: We purchased bendable floral twine from the wreath section of Michaels and used it to create the circular outline of the dream-catcher. We wound it around a few times to make it stronger. Then we used white embroidery thread to make the inner webbed design. We tied one end of the thread to the top of the catcher, then pulled it and wrapped it around the catcher (forming a line) to make about six lines going the full way around the circle. That was level one, the furthest away from the center of the catcher. For level two, instead of looping the thread around the circle, we looped it around the thread from level one. This pulled the thread from the previous level and gave it a nice tension. We then did the third level of thread-wrapping and tied the thread off at the end to close the web. We made sure to leave the center of the dream-catcher open because in theory that is supposed to be the spot where dreams pass through. The last step was to hang three trailing strands of beads and feathers from the bottom of the catcher.

Tip: Stacy’s cats went crazy for the peacock feathers, so keep pets in mind when designing and hanging your dream-catcher.

Note: For my dream-catcher, I actually strung beads on my embroidery thread all the way around when doing the webbing for a unique effect.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Homemade Bath Oil

Combine the following in a glass container you can seal – makes a great Christmas gift!

  • A) 1 cup Jojoba Oil – It’s chemically similar to the natural oils in your skin, so the finished product easily absorbs into your skin

  • B) 1/2 cup Avocado Oil – It’s a natural sunscreen, moisturizer, and antioxidant; it’s more potent than olive oil

  • C) 1/2 cup Olive Oil – It does the same things as avocado oil but much it’s less expensive

  • D) 30 drops Jasmine Essential Oil – It smells pretty, but you can use any essential oil of your choice such as Peppermint or Vanilla

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Hair Pins

Get artificial flowers at a craft store like Michael’s. Look for ones that will lie rather flat on your head and avoid those that have a larger round bulb at the point where the flower’s head meets its stem. That way, your pin won’t look like some sort of alien creation sticking up out of your head. Also buy hair clips at a supply store like Sally’s Beauty Supplies. Figure out the flower arrangement you want for your hair clip including leaves, which you will use to camouflage and cover the silver hair clip. Separate your flower(s) and leaves from their stems. Crop the flower very close to its stem so that it will lie as flat as possible on top of the clip. We used gardening clippers. Now open your hair clip and place something in its teeth to catch the excess glue so that your clip will not stick together. We used excess leaves. Next, hot glue your leaves on top of the clip, covering its silver shape completely. Now glue on your flower(s). When the glue was dry we removed and discarded the excess leaves we used to catch glue that seeped through.

Note: If your flower starts to come apart, just glue its bottom layer to the leaves and glue each successive layer to that until you’re done building the flower back up. Also, if you want to do a hair pin with a peacock feather or other non-floral centerpiece instead, you can use scraps of fabric to cover the sliver clip instead of leaves.

For another example of hair pins see this example.