Wednesday, September 29, 2010

we're all winners...

What a crazy busy day!  Do you know what I almost forgot and then quickly remembered only to forget again and then be reminded by the post on my blog that I totally forgot about??? 

Yes!  The csn stores giveaway!

How could I do that?!?  Well, I once again went over to and had fun with the number generator.  As per last time, I was really sad when only one number popped up (even though I'd programmed it that way.  I just want everyone to win.)

But I only have one gift card.  And this time, the number pulled out of the proverbial hat was:

who happens to be the lovely Mandi of Vintage Revivals, who's going to get new bedding for her daughter's room!  (Isn't she nice to share??)  They've got great bedding, so I'm sure this will be put to good use.  Congrats!

Here are your random numbers:
Timestamp: 2010-09-30 04:25:46 UTC

send me an email so I can give you the info, Mandi!

If I can bear the guilt and burden of disappointing everyone who leaves comments and DOESN'T get picked, we may have another giveaway in the future.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

P.S. in case you can't get enough...

Don't miss my very first EVER guest post over at The T-Shirt Diaries!!!!  

Where I show you what I did with two armloads of these:

And no, it does NOT involve DIY stained glass.  

Thinking of changing my blog name...

You didn’t think I’d let a week go by without showing you some DIY stained glass, did you?  Pretty soon I’ll have to change the name of this blog to “Mod Podge Stain Glass Projects” or “I’m Really One Note” or maybe “Obsessive Compulsive Crafting.”  That last one has a nice ring to it...
At least this project is a different take on it.  No jars here, folks.  Just this:  

one clearance frame from walmart.  And it started out like this:

and this:
mod podge
food coloring
spray paint
acrylic craft paint
paint brush
two wooden purse handles - old and beat up, from St. Vinny’s
Gorilla Glue Epoxy
plastic Spoon
And no, I didn’t buy any of this special for this project - my status as a “Stashbusting September Blog” remains in tact. 
I bought the frame long ago for super cheap and wasn’t sure what to do with it.  Eventually, I noticed picture frame trays floating around Crafty Chic Land and knew that my frame was actually a tray in disguise.  But I wanted it to be different.  And cool...
Enter, DIY stained glass.  The minute I did my first vases, I knew I wanted to try the technique on other things too.  And a cheap frame that I wanted to make unique seemed like the perfect guinea pig.
Want to see how it turned out?  Well, you’ll have to wait for the end of the post.
Here’s how to do it.
Mix up your mod podge/water/food coloring solution.  (more on that here)
Take the glass out of your frame and lay it on a well covered flat surface.  Then, drizzle or pour the mod podge solution around the glass.

Tip the glass around so the mod podge covers the whole glass.

Add some drops of food coloring here and there.
Take a toothpick and smear the food coloring around.
Add a few more drops of food coloring and tip the frame on its side (whichever way you want the design to run).
Fair warning.  At this point, your hands will look like this.  Awesome.
Now, clean the edges of your glass and make sure the other side is clean too.
Stick it in the oven on a baking sheet and cook it at 170^ for about an hour or so.  
And here is the result:
I was pretty stoked.
Now, spray paint your frame and handles.
If your handles are wider than your frame, place the handles under the frame on the short ends of the tray.  Using a pen, mark where the handles stick out from the tray.
Have your hubby cut them to size.  Or, you know, you could do it too.  I didn’t want to use the hand saw, I’m lazy like that.  We have GOT to get a saws-all.  
Now, take your handles and your frame out back and rough ‘em up.  OK, just kidding.  You don’t have to take them out back.  Just pull out your sandpaper.  (You should sand the edges, too, so the wood isn't rough where you cut it.)
DISCLAIMER: I don’t know what the heck I am doing when it comes to distressing.  I just followed the lead of several other crafty people out there, like Mandi from Vintage Revivals and Mandy from Mandy’s Yellow Corner.  Huh.  They’re both Mandy’s... Anyway, it’s not perfect.
Sand away, paying special attention to corners and raised portions - the areas that would likely get all banged up if it were thrown around in the basement for 80 years or so.

Then, mix up a slightly darker color with your acrylic paints and dry brush it on the handles and the frame - especially the raised detail (if any).

Sand again.

Mix up an ivory/white color with acrylic paint and add water to dilute it, making kind of a glaze.  
Brush it on the handles, paying special attention to cracks, dents, holes, and blemishes.  After letting it sit for a bit, wipe it off with a cloth.

Do the same to the frame.
Once it dries, you’re finally ready to assemble it into a tray!  
Cut out some decorative paper to fit inside the frame - a note about color/pattern:  I wanted the glass to be the focal point.  I did not want the paper to compete in any way.  So I chose a neutral colored paper with a slight pattern and variance in color.  You could use whatever kind of paper suits your fancy!
Stick it in the frame and close it up.
Take the little stand part of the frame off.
Mix up your epoxy (beware, it is SMELLY.)
Using the plastic spoon, spread the epoxy on the part of the wooden handles that will attach to the back of the frame. 
Stick it on the frame 

and clamp it down in multiple places.
Now you just let it sit until the epoxy is completely cured.  Waiting overnight is the hardest part.
Take the clamps off, turn it over and voila!
A fun stained glass tray dressed in my favorite spray paint and yours - Krylon’s Ocean Breeze!

And no, I’m not really changing the name of my blog.  Obsessive Compulsive Crafting might be more accurate, but I’m not sure I’m ready to broadcast that everywhere yet.

EDITED:  Here's a picture of the glass after it was baked but before it was put in the frame so you can see how translucent it is.  You'll want to pick paper you won't mind seeing just slightly when you cover the cardboard back of the frame.  Of course, it won't be this translucent when it's all together, because the light won't be shining all through it, but I wanted to give you an idea.

- Kimberly

Monday, September 27, 2010

Tasting Fall

I decided today it was time to really go fall.  mr’s been craving his mom’s beef stew, and after all, it IS his birthday later this week, so although tonight wasn’t his OFFICIAL birthday dinner I decided to cave to his craving.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t find his mom’s recipe in our family cookbook last night and it wasn’t there!  Aware that mr wouldn’t be fooled, I looked for a suitable substitute recipe anyway.  I’ve never made beef stew before, but I knew I wanted something that was meaty and gravy-y.  I found this Beef Stew on (where else)  And what goes with beef stew?  Biscuits of course!  I found an interesting take on biscuits at as well - They’re called Cheesy Rolls, but I call them Pickle Biscuits.  Yep, no kidding.  I also made this Hot Fall Drink on, which I think needs a better title.  Maybe Apple Spice or Festive Fall Potion or something.  I had no idea what to make for dessert, so I went to and typed in “Fall Dessert.”  The first one to pop up was Gingered Pear and Raspberry Pandowdy, which looked delicious.  I followed all of the recipes exactly, except for the biscuits, which I’ll put up below.
Forewarning, the stew takes FOR.EV.ER. to make.  I personally like cooking things that have to cook for a long time, because I can be making other parts of the meal while it just sits and simmers.  Pretty much common sense.  It cooked for about two and a half hours total.  The end result was a very thick gravy-based stew made with steak and lots of veggies.  mom and dad loved it (I know, I wasn’t surprised either...) I thought it was pretty yummy.  mr commented that although it was good, it was nothing like his mom’s.
I knew it.
The Pickle Biscuits surprised us all.  They are so yummy!  I would never have thought to put pickles in biscuits, but I’m glad I tried this recipe.
Pickle Biscuits
4 C. flour
2 T. baking powder
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp paprika
4 C. grated cheese - I used that new kraft blend with cream cheese in it.  DELICIOUS.
3/4 C. dill pickles
2 eggs
1 1/2 C. milk
parmesan cheese - my addition, can't have too much cheese, can you?
Mix the flour, baking powder, salt and paprika in a large bowl.  Stir in the grated cheese and pickles.  Beat the eggs and milk together.  Make a hold in the center of the flour mixture and pour in most of the milk mixture, retaining some to brush on top.  Mix to a soft but fairly stiff dough.  Scoop out a small handful, roll into a ball and place on a greased baking sheet.  Continue to do this with the dough until gone - about 14 biscuits.  Leave room for spreading.  Brush each biscuit with the milk mixture and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.  Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes.
The original recipe called for a much lower temperature and less time, but my oven isn’t calibrated right and I found that I needed to up both the temperature and time.  You may need to play with that, though.  
The resulting biscuits were nice and crisp on the outside and warm and gooey on the inside (a direct quote from my dad - “they are gooey goodness.”)
The drink ended up a lot like wassail, actually.  It was really yummy, but not really something to drink with dinner.  mom, dad and I loved it, and even think it would be good cold, and although mr thought it tasted good, he opted for milk with his food.  This is totally something I would make instead of hot cocoa in the fall.
The dessert was absolutely phenomenal.  I’ve never heard of pandowdy before, but I guess the point is that the “filling” is on the bottom and the biscuity crust is on the top.  Well, whatever the case, I’m sold.  I’m going to make it again.  And again.  And probably again.  We served it with ice cream and everyone loved it - except bug who just loved the ice cream. 

It was my first time making all of these, in any form, and they were relatively easy to pull off.  Tasty too.  

I think I’m starting to like fall.
mini enjoyed the stew, even if her brother didn't.




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