December 2014 ~ Create it. Go!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas and Happy new Year!

Merry Christmas!

I'm taking a bit of time off blogging here and there over the next couple weeks, but no worries! I'm still here and will continue to post, just not daily for the next week or two, as I spend some quality time with my family building memories. I'm so thankful for all I've been blessed with this past year, and am excited for a new 2015 that's going to ROCK! (I already have a HUGE list of posts and ideas I want to share!) I have enjoyed blogging and learning more and more and sharing so many ideas through it all. What a blessing social media can me, when we used it for good! (and recipes, and crafts, and tips with kids and family, and home...haha I could keep going.)

As we all look to the end of one year, and the beginning of another, I am reminded at what matters most to me in my life. I wanted to share some of that with you this Christmas. I recently shared a little video called #HeIsTheGift found here. It's short and simple, but beautiful and poignant. . I love the story of Christmas found here as well. I'm thankful for Christ in my life, for his birth, AND for his life. I'm thankful for a wonderful family that keeps on trying.

I hope that you and your families also have a wonderful holiday season and enjoy the time together. Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas!


Monday, December 22, 2014

Spiced Hazelnut Cookies with Chocolate Hazelnut Topping

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. 
All opinions are mine alone. 
 #TasteTheMiracle #CollectiveBias #recipe #cookie

I've shared a few of our family's traditions lately during the holiday season and some of our favorite recipes too. I've saved one of the best to share with you today!

 When I was growing up, many years my family would go caroling during the holidays. It was a special memory and a fun night that we shared with other friends. We would normally have a group of 3-4 families and we would all gather together at someone's home before we left. We would all bring some goodies, and then we would distribute all the misc. goodies to several plates, so that there was some of each kind of cookie, fudge, bread, etc. on every plate. Then we were ready to leave! 

We'd go to other friends' homes and carol, and then leave them each with a plate of yumminess. What's not to love?! Even as a teenager, this night would leave me with a feeling of warmth. ( It didn't hurt that it was a social thing for me too, bc I got to be with friends. heehee) Now, that I have my own family, I have wanted to do this for years...AND this is the year! I am so excited and wanted to come up with a fun new cookie recipe to take as well.  

Friday, December 19, 2014

Not Your Ordinary Santa Cookie Plate!

#christmas #santa #silhouetteportrait #diy #diychristmas #christmasforkids #believe #cookieplate

I can't believe we have less than a week until Christmas. I am still finishing up a few projects...eek!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

New Year's Tradition: Family Memorable Moments Jar

A few years ago, I decided that I wanted more traditions in our own little family. Traditions make memories. So I decided to start some of our own...and New Year's is one holiday that didn't seem to hold many (if ANY!) for us.

One thing I had been trying to do more of throughout the year, was to capture more of our everyday fun little moments. The idea was to blog them, but you know how that goes. Life gets in the way and sometimes these little tiny moments of time never made their way to the blog. So I decided to just jot them down real quick in a notebook here and there. But then...nobody enjoyed them. So I had the thought, "Why not get a jar of sorts, and have the whole family contribute to little fun (or funny) moments throughout the year?" We keep a tin box (used to be a jar...either works!) on the counter (with some blank pieces of paper and a pen in it) and we write them down when they happen and return them to the jar folded.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Top 5 Featured Posts and Pins

I have seen so many great posts and pins recently, that I wanted to share them! I don't know about you, but they are like gems when you find just the right one for a gift, a dinner, or just that little idea that plants inside your head as inspiration for something or someone else!

Thanks for the great ideas everyone! And thanks for sharing them!

Felt Nativity Story Free Pattern from Stay at Home Educator
For the little ones...or for the Sunday School lesson...

Great DIY Gifts on a Budget from The 36th Ave

Yummy Goodness found on FB here.

Recipe below:
1 (16- to 18-ounce) round loaf Italian or sourdough bread
1/4 cup butter melted
1 teaspoon dry ranch dressing mix
1/2 cup (about 5 slices) cooked chopped thick-cut bacon
1/4 cup jarred jalapeƱo peppers, chopped
10 (3/4-ounce) slices cheese chopped
2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley, if desired

Heat oven to 350°F. Place two (24-inch) pieces aluminum foil, crossing one over the other, on flat surface.

Cut bread, using serrated knife, in grid pattern, spacing about 1-inch between rows. Do not cut through bottom crust. Set aside.

Combine melted butter and ranch dressing in medium bowl. Add all remaining ingredients except parsley; mix well.

Place loaf in center of aluminum foil pieces. Spoon cheese mixture into cut areas of bread. Wrap foil loosely around bread. Place onto ungreased baking sheet.

Bake 30 minutes. Pull back foil; continue baking 5-10 minutes or until loaf is golden brown and cheese is melted. Sprinkle with parsley, if desired.

Serve immediately. Pull out individual bread pieces, using tongs or 2 forks and reaching down into loaf to include filling and bread.

$1 DIY Sketch Pen holders for your Silhouette (Dying over these!) from the Silhouette School.

Fun and easy Golden Bling wreath from Ginger Snap Crafts

Friday, December 12, 2014

Rocket Raccoon and a List of 10 Family {To Do} Ideas during Christmas/Winter Break

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. 
 #OwnTheGalaxy #CollectiveBias 
#familymovienight #christmasbreakideasforkids #familytime #rocketraccoon #screentime #chrismtastraditions #12daysofchristmas #familytradtions

I've been thinking a lot lately about what we fill our time with during the holiday season and what we actually WANT to fill our time with. I think we all get busy and wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of the season, but we all WANT more time to just simplify and enjoy being with our families at this time of year. As Rocket Raccoon said in Guardians of the Galaxy, "I'm only interested in the simple how much is this going to hurt!" (I promise that spending time as a family will NOT least I hope not! haha) 

As I have been thinking about our own family, I decided that I want to plan some fun during my kids' break from school this winter! We have traditions that we do every year, and of course, I love those and want to keep those up, but I want to do more this year! I also wanted to come up with a list of things that would help keep my children occupied during their time off from school. (Trying to avoid hearing those ugly two words "I'm bored." hahaha)

So, here's a list of ideas to do as a family and to keep your kids occupied this season and to have a bit of fun as a family!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

DIY Family Tree Floating Ornaments and Our Family Christmas Photos

 #diy   #diyornaments   #christmas   #christmasgifts  #christmascrafts   #ontheblog   #ontheblogtoday  #floatingornaments   #createitgo   #inkjetprinter   #familyphotos  #familyphotoornament   #‎inkjettransparencyornamentinserts  #silhouetteamerica #familiesareforever #familyhistory #geneology

I was thrilled to guest post for Melissa over at the Silhouette School last week. If you own (or want to own) a Silhouette machine, she has a great site to help you with lots of great tutorials and inspiration! I wanted to make sure and share with you my tutorial on here as well, for making Family Christmas floating ornaments.

One of my favorite things I make this time of year is floating ornaments. You probably saw my recent Frozen Olaf inspired one from earlier this week or others I have done in the past. I absolutely adore the unique look of them and the personalization you can make with each one. And it helps that they are sooooo incredibly fast, easy, and inexpensive, but impress everyone who sees them!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Super Soft Sugar Cookie Recipe

Today I'm sharing one of my favorite past recipe posts! Why? Because I still have yet to find a better recipe to replace it. It's a winner!

You know those soft sugar cookies that you buy at the grocery store? The little round ones with the frosting, that are so soft, and you can't duplicate for the life of you?! Well, this recipe makes cookies similar to those! I love it!

Monday, December 8, 2014

OREO Cookie Balls on Gingerbread Cookie Cake

    This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. 
    All opinions are mine alone.
#CollectiveBias #OREOCookieBalls #cbias #recipe #holidayrecipes #holidaytreats #cookiecake

Are you ready for the holidays? What do you do to celebrate New Year's after the thrill of Christmas is gone? I am never ready to take down our tree just yet. Our family likes to prolong this time of year and the festivities at least into New Year's and sometimes even a couple days after. It only comes every 12 months ya know! ;)

Well, I have the perfect dessert/snack for you to make this holiday season! (And really, it works for almost anytime, because there are so many different ways you can mix it up!) BUT, not only do I have a great recipe for you today for some OREO Cookie Balls, and fun variations, BUT...I also have a super fun new IDEA/tradition to go along with it for you! Keep reading to find out how they go together! ;)

Who doesn't love #OREOCookieBalls?! 

Some People Are Worth Melting For (Frozen Inspired) Ornament

I don't know about your house, but mine is STILL humming with Frozen songs. And Olaf seems to be even bigger (if that is possible!) in our house ever since we made that adorable Olaf costume for my daughter for Halloween (seen here). Then the Olaf Inspired mug came along and, so of course, we needed to add an ornament to our Olaf filled house for this winter season!

I love my Silhouette! Have I said that before? I love my SIL!!!

And I have enjoyed being part of the Silhouette FB challenge group so much this year as well. Today I'm sharing my holiday post as part of that group and it's soooo much fun! Plus, I've got a surprise for you at the end of the post!

Christmas Wish List {Favorite Things} Basket GIVEAWAY

Today I'm doubly excited to be part of a another group of bloggers that have some amazing and fun Christmas Wish List Baskets all up for grabs! 

22 amazing bloggers from 2 countries have gotten together to offer 22 prize packages for this year's Christmas Wish List Giveaway! Each blogger has gathered some of their favourite items from their own wish list and put together a gift for you!
Visit each blog to see what items are included in their prize.  Every blogger has a separate giveaway that you must enter on their own site, to win their prize package.  You might win more than one!
Giveaways open to Canada will have a little Canadian flag in the top corner of their image (above).  If there is also an American flag that means that giveaway is open to both countries. Most of the giveaways are open to the U.S. only (no flag on image).
Blog Hop
1. Raising Memories // 2. Ginger Snap Crafts // 3. Rustic Refined // 4. Kleinworth & Co.// 5. 7 Alive // 6. A Momless Mom // 7. Dukes & Duchesses // 8. Happy Hour Projects // 9. It Happens in a Blink // 10. Create. Craft. Love. // 11. The Kim Six Fix  // 12. Crafting in the Rain // 13. Create it. Go! // 14. Bubbly Nature Creations // 15. Working Mommy Journal // 16. Fern Avenue 17. B is 4 // 18. inkhappi // 19. Kathe with an E // 20. The Mommy Mix // 21. Play. Party. Pin. // 22. Frenchie Wraps 

Sunday, December 7, 2014

DIY Yardstick Crate Box Tutorial

I have had some sickies this week and have had a hard time getting this last project for the week done. Ironically too, it is sooo easy! But I'm here today...finally! haha

Today I have another From this to that for you. My favorite kind of post! Where I take something that seems plain and ordinary and transform it into...something not so plain and ordinary. lol No, really. I just love creating and love taking something and using some creativity to make it into something fun...or just something...MORE! Love it!

Today I have a simple DIY for you. And all you really need is a couple of yardsticks! Yep! That's it! (Well, I'm not gonna need some adhesive or nails/staples too. lol)

It's the easiest thing ever and so fun!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Who likes Wassail? (Recipe) Holiday Punch

"What IS that?"people ask?
"Wassail." is my answer.
Blank look follows, still unsure of the word I just said.

Wassail. It's a traditionally known holiday punch that has apple cider as the main ingredient. It's soooo yummy and makes your whole house smell heavenly!

Share the Gift

Photo: John 3:16 is often overlooked as a scripture related to Christmas, but in it lies the true meaning of the season. This Christmas, discover, embrace, and #ShareTheGift that never stops giving. Watch the video at

Our family took a couple minutes last night to watch this little video together before our evening family prayer and scripture reading. I just wanted to share it. I thought it was the perfect way to start this Christmas season and brought the exact feeling I wanted into our home.

Hope you enjoy.


Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Minecraft Gameband Makes the Game Portable

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. 
#GameOnTheGo #CollectiveBias #Minecraft #creeper #cbias @MyGameband @Minecraft 

How many of you out there have someone you know who would play Minecraft 24/7 if you let them?! haha What if it could be a portable Minecraft game? Think your kids (or YOU?) could go for that?! Well, if you follow me on here at all, you know I have a few kids who would! Maybe it was the Minecraft inspired DIY costumes I've shown (that we have sported three years in a row) that tipped you off? haha  Sheez! We even had Minecraft decor in our bathroom at one point! ha! Well, we've added to that Minecraft craze lately with this Gameband. And BOY! Is it a big hit in our house!

Monday, December 1, 2014

Flying through the Floor Cleaning with Chores for Children

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.
#CleanForTheHolidays #CollectiveBias #choresforkids #chorechart #ad

Do you have a chore chart at your house? Is is a success? Or a fail? At our house, somedays it's one and others, well, we don't focus on those days. ;) Well...remember that fun Star Wars themed chore chart I posted recently? (You can see it here.) We are still LOVIN it! (or at least I am...hee hee) But along with that, comes figuring out exactly what kind of chores you want your kids to do AND what kind of chores that you can reasonably expect them to be capable of performing successfully. I never ever would have guessed this, but my kids feel like cleaning the floor is one of the hardest chores they are asked to do. They don't feel like they sweep and/or mop well. And I have to admit, the job they do is...lacking. ;) So I set out recently to get the best mop that I could find for them to do some floor cleaning successfully. And apparently I got the right one, because I walked into the kitchen to see this the other day as my son was mopping! True story. I had to run to grab the camera. Totally cracked me up!

Face it, it's no fun to get assigned a task that you don't feel confident that you can do. If you assign chores to your children that they are unable to accomplish, instead of giving them a feeling accomplishment and pride in the work that they are doing, it can leave them with a bitter feeling toward doing chores and may lead them to drag their feet even more when asked to help out. When we, as adults OR as children, learn to do something new and also take pride in how we perform that task, it helps to give us a feeling of more independence. It also helps us to want to do more of the same and of similar tasks. You want to make sure that what you are asking of your kids is reasonable, and that they understand your expectations.