Make This: Easy French Macarons

Happy Macaron Day! While many bakeries around the country are celebrating by giving away these delicious treats today, you could make your own. 

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I used the “Easy French Macaron” recipe on MarthaStewart.com because the video made it seem do-able. And it was for the most part, except they have salt in the recipe but not in the instructions or video. I omitted it after looking at other recipes. 

I added some pink gel food coloring to half the batter, but would add more as the color seems to fade a little from baking. I then filled one with seedless raspberry jam and Nutella after they cooled because it was easiest. 

They were on the crunchy side when they came out but, according to FoodNouveau, they should be because you should fill them and let them “mature” for 24 hours. The shells will absorb some moisture from the filling and end up being perfect. 

Easy DIY: Child’s Art Embroidery

My friends’s daughter drew this barn, so I thought it would fun to embroider and make her a small pillow.

2015/01/img_5632-0.jpgI took her drawing and used my Crayola lightpad to trace the image. Then I just used some basic stitches to embroider it with the colors she requested.

Make This: Iced Penguin Cookies

A friend’s daughter wanted a winter themed birthday party and she asked for some treat ideas. I made white chocolate snowflake wands and my version penguin cookies that I found by Sandra Denneler at SheKnows. I used Junior Mints instead of black jelly beans and added “ice.”

Easy DIY: Minecraft Blocks

My friend wanted to decorate her apartment for her son’s video game themed party. Minecraft is one of his favorites, so going off the coin blocks from the Mario Party, I decided to make big Minecraft blocks. Using wrapping paper and 8x8x8 boxes, I came up with three types of blocks–grass, dirt and diamond.

IMG_5758 You can buy Minecraft diamond wrapping paperat Amazon. There are three sheets to a pack and it’s enough to wrap eight 8x8x8 boxes if you slightly overlap the remaining scrap strips. The pattern is busy enough where you can’t tell that you’ve pieced it together.

Easy DIY: Felt Ram Horns

I thought I’d dress up my son as a ram for my Lunar New Year’s card. I was going to just sew a tube and roll it into shape until I saw Gladys Paulus’ felted rams’ horns which are amazing!

Using them as inspiration, I sewed felt into tubes of various sizes and cut them into segments.

IMG_5625I then fit them together and curved the “horn” into the shape I wanted.

IMG_5621You could either attach them to a white hoodie or to a headband. I attached them to an old t-shirt covered in cotton balls and added white felt ears.

IMG_5769Happy Year of the Ram!

Easy DIY: Valentine Treat Bags

Since I’m trying to use up the stash of small drawstring bags, I thought I’d make some fun treat bags for Valentine’s Day. I just replaced the drawstring with red ribbon. You could also use fabric paint or rubber stamps to make your treat bags.
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Easy DIY: Crystal Clear Valentines

Playing off the science theme from the Petri dish cookies, I thought I’d use test tubes for classroom valentines. 2015/01/img_5620.jpg I originally was going to put polymer gel balls in the tubes but then thought the kids might not read the directions and end up eating them. I went with rainbow rock candy pieces instead. They kind of remind me of those souvenir pencils that had a tube of gems attached.

I used 16 X 125mm plastic test tubes and it took about a pound to fill 25 of them. I had to crush the rock candy I bought to fit in the tubes but you can order smaller pieces through Oh! Nuts.