Thursday, December 18, 2014

Measuring Cup Card

Okay, I admit it.  The idea for this card was totally taken from the Stampin' Up Occasions catalog that arrived today.  They have a measuring cup stamp that I really thought was cute, but it's too small for an A2 card front.  The stamps are only available as wood or clear, not digital, so there was no way to purchase and resize the image. And, they're not available to order for two more weeks!  I was ready to make cards and knew I needed to do these before the inspiration left me.

It took a few minutes to find a clip art image of a measuring cup, add the text and get it resized in Hallmark Card Studio software.  Hopefully, Stampin' Up will add this stamp set into their digital stamp collection.  When it's available digitally, it's a set I'd really enjoy owning.


Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Monogrammed Ring Catcher Dishes

I can post the photos now that these have been given to my friends.  The little dish is 3" square, white ceramic, found at Pier 1.  If you go looking for them, ask for dipping sauce bowls and the clerk should take you right to them.  When I asked about them, the clerk told me I was the second person that day buying them for ring catchers.

 Samantha font was used for the letters.  The letters measure proximately 1 3/4" high, cut out of Oracal 651 metallic gold vinyl.
These were gifts for the ladies in the wine group.  We had a get together last night and I passed them out to everyone.

Fiesta Bubble Bread

I saw this recipe online and tried it tonight.  It's really very good and I'll definitely make it again. 


Fiesta Bubble Bread
1/2 c. butter, melted
1-1/2 c. shredded Mexican-blend cheese
1/4 c. shredded mozzarella cheese
10-oz. jar sliced jalapeƱo peppers, drained
1 t. dried parsley
2-12-oz. tubes refrigerated biscuits, cut into quarters

In a large bowl, combine butter, cheeses, pepper slices and parsley; add biscuits and toss to coat. Transfer to an ungreased Bundt pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes, or until golden. Invert onto a serving plate; serve warm.

You can add cooked breakfast sausage too.





Since there are just the two of us, I used a single can of buttermilk biscuits and reduced the other ingredients.  I did not add sausage since we were having it with our dinner.

Punched Hearts Card

A Stampin' Up punch was used for the hearts.  I inked the edges and used a Peachy Keen stamp for the face.  They sit on a 2" x 4" rectangle with inked edges and pen work. Inspired by a card seen online.

It seemed like such a simple idea...

Even I find it hard to believe that I spent over 3 hours getting this card laid out and completed.  It seemed like such a simple idea.  Then it took me forever to find, trace, print and cut, then color the owls and the branch.  There are hundreds of MTC and Silhouette files on my computer and no simple tree branch or cutesy owl among them.

Once I found a clip art image that I liked of the owl, it didn't take too long to get it replicated in Silhouette software, traced, and do a print and cut.

A search of clip art images yielded several branches that would have worked but I could never get a decent traced image.  They all had double cut lines and I just couldn't get them eliminated.  If I used the shadow option, the detail on the leaves was lost since the branch is so small.

In desperation, I went to the Silhouette store and bought the branch file.  Then realized- after messing around with it in the Silhouette software for about 30 minutes - that I really, really don't like to cut things with that program.  So, I did a trace in MTC and got them cut the correct size.

Granted, part of the 3 hours was spent walking back and forth to the kitchen and snacking on sausage balls I made.  The house smelled so good, I couldn't stay out of them!

In the end, I'm satisfied with the way this card turned out.  It will work well for Valentine's Day, an anniversary or an I love you card any time of the year.


Monday, December 15, 2014

A New Twist On A Holiday Favorite

Every family has food items that they associate with the Christmas holiday season.  I know our family has to have cheese logs, Chex party mix, smoked cheese, potato soup mix, dipped pretzels, and sausage balls.
 
Recently I found a new twist to make sausage balls and tried the recipe out this afternoon. The traditional recipe that I've used for years is just a mixture of Bisquick, grated cheddar cheese, and bulk sausage.  The new recipe included cream cheese and hash brown potatoes.
 

Here's the recipe as seen online:
 
Sausage & Hash Brown Balls
approximately 60
  • 1 lb hot sausage, uncooked
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups Bisquick
  • 1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1/2 (30oz) package frozen shredded hash brown potatoes (about 4 cups)
Preheat oven to 400F.
Mix all ingredients until well combined. (I use my KitchenAid mixer with the dough hook attachment) Roll into 1 1/2-inch balls. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until brown.
Sausage balls may be frozen uncooked. If baking frozen, add a few minutes to the baking time.

Here's the way I made it today:
 
Sausage and Hash Brown Balls

1 lb. sausage, uncooked
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cups Bisquick
1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, grated
14 oz. potatoes, peeled and grated **

Using my KitchenAid mixer and dough hook, I thoroughly mixed all the ingredients.  Then I used a cookie scoop to form the balls, placed them onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper and baked them in a 400° convection oven for 15-20 minutes until they were golden brown.

**I weighed out 14 oz. of potatoes on my kitchen scale since I didn't have any frozen hash browns on hand.  I peeled them and grated them with my food processor, placed the grated potatoes into a large bowl of water and rinsed off the excess starch.  I drained the potatoes in a colander, then placed them in a kitchen towel and wrung out all the excess water.

The addition of cream cheese and grated potatoes made the balls much softer and did change the flavor slightly.  They don't have as much sausage flavor as the old recipe in my opinion.  I sampled them fresh out of the oven while still piping hot and then later after they had cooled completely.  The flavors had developed more after they cooled.  

Not completely convinced that I'll abandon my old stand-by recipe at this point. These are definitely good, and adding the cream cheese and potatoes stretched the recipe out and made more balls, but I prefer a stronger sausage flavor. The added potatoes did seem to absorb some of the grease from the sausage so the balls were less greasy.   I'll give the updated version one more try and use less grated potato or try commercially prepared hash browns.  Freshly grated potatoes may have more moisture than frozen hash browns and that would definitely affect the outcome of the recipe.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Live In The Moment

Yesterday, while shopping with Shirley, I picked up these circle dies at Tuesday Morning. The smallest shape is layered on top of a 1" scalloped punched circle.   I figured I better use them on a card before they got put away and forgotten.  There are so many tools and supplies in my craft room that even after walking the aisles in both Hobby Lobby and Michael's yesterday I could not find a single thing I wanted or needed to buy.

Using Make The Cut, I laid out the card front and modified the right triangles to fit.  It took me at least 30 minutes to decide on the papers to use.  I wanted to pick up the colors in the banner behind the triangles and tried multiple combinations of colors and prints before deciding that the turquoise color looked best with an orange layer.  Picking colors is difficult for me!

The longer I looked at the photo, the more I thought it needed something on the orange triangles.  The added punched flowers were what it needed.

 

Monday, December 8, 2014

Taking A Look Back...

Out of date Stampin' Up catalogs are some of the publications that I just can't seem to toss out.  When I'm looking for card inspiration I get them out and flip through the pages until something catches my eye.

These cards were inspired by photos in the 2009 catalog. I used Card Games and God's Beauty stamp sets.

I colored the joker image with Promarkers and used Make The Cut to cut the heart and circle.  There's a little pen work and inking on it also.

This card has three different shades of purple cardstock; the lightest one looks white in the photo.  I used  Lilac Posies, Grape Jelly and Bamboo Leaves ink by Memento.

The background was stamped with Versamark ink for a watermark effect.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Let It Snow

The snowflakes were done with a tiny punch from WalMart.  I printed the sentiment and the snowman's head using Hallmark Card Studio software and added a scalloped border with a punch.

Thankful For You Card

Using my Cameo and Make The Cut software, I cut the digital image of Stampin' Up's little leaves die and the large scalloped circle.  The sentiment is stamped with Bamboo Leaves ink.  I tore the edge of the brown paper strip and then curled it slightly.  The scalloped circle is pop dotted for dimension.

Sweetest Card - 30 Minute Card

Google image search was where I found this cute clip art image of mini-cupcakes.  I printed the sentiment on my computer and used a Stampin' Up border punch to add an accent.

I saw a card like this using a set of cupcake stamps and decided that I'd rather use the clip art than to stamp and color such small images.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Red Leaves Card

The gold dots are heat set metal.  I printed the sentiment and added some leaves stamped with Memento Rhubarb Stalk ink.