Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Peppermint Bark Muddy Buddy Chex Mix COPYCAT Recipe

If you haven't experienced the delicious treat that is Chex Mix Peppermint Bark Muddy have missed out!!  I love all things peppermint and look forward to trying the new fun snacks and items that come out this time of year.

A few years ago, I stumbled upon this bag of sweetness at Target....and I was hooked!
Each year, I make a special trip to the Christmas aisles of Target in search of a bag...okay, several bags. This year, however, it WASN'T THERE!!  What??!!??  After a fruitless search, I went online and even Amazon said "unsure if this item will be available".  Ugh.

A holiday season without my favorite treat??  It couldn't happen, so I scoured Pinterest for recipes.  There are plenty.  BUT, do not be misled.....while the recipes may be yummy, many of them didn't even look like the Chex brand version.  Some of the recipes have pieces of peppermint bark in them, others include chopped candy canes, and then there are some that do not even have powdered sugar....gotta have that!

I finally decided I was going to try one I thought looked and sounded closest to the original simple store-bought version but then.....I saw these bags of candy Cane Wilton Candy Melts at Walmart today!

It seemed too easy....but, not only is this a super easy recipe, it tastes just like the original!
Easy and tasty...can't beat that!

5 cups Rice Chex cereal
1 bag (10 oz) Wilton Peppermint Candy Melts
1 cup powdered sugar (add extra if you need it...can't go wrong here!)

Melt your candy melts in the microwave or on the stovetop and pour over the cereal. Be sure to mix it gently but thoroughly so that all the cereal pieces are covered.  Then pour on the powdered sugar and mix well again.  Let it sit for a few minutes to cool completely and then try to keep from eating the whole bowl!  


Saturday, December 3, 2016

DIY Silhouette Yard Nativity

I have been wanting a Nativity scene for my front yard ever since I bought the house nearly 6 years ago, but I just haven't found "the one".  This year an idea popped into my head one lazy morning as I was laying in bed....could it work?  Could I make it easily enough?  Why not?  :)
So, I tried it....and it did work!  I think it looks lovely both day and night too!

During the day, a simple, rustic look:

And, at night, all lit up:

It wasn't hard to do, but it does take a little patience.  First, I purchased the supplies at Home Depot.  (I already had the wood stain, nails, and wood screws on hand.)
I used a 4ft x 4ft square of plywood flooring underlay because it is thin, smooth, and inexpensive. You'll also need four 1"x2"x8' furring strips, one 1/2"x10' pvc pipe, 1/2" pvc pipe end caps, and  a package of 1/2" pipe brackets.
The overall cost is only ~$15!  Not bad at all!

Using a piece of chalk, I sketched my Nativity design onto my plywood square.
Lesson Learned:  BE SURE to leave at least 2" on all edges to account for the frame support that will be behind your might want to draw a square that is 2" smaller than your plywood before drawing your figures.

Once happy with the sketch, i used my jigsaw to cut around the figures leaving the bottom intact.  The only thing I cut out completely was the star.  In order for the Nativity figures to be silhouettes and not full cutouts, you MUST not cut across the bottom!  What I did was drill a small hole (just large enough for my jigsaw blade to fit in) at the bottom of each figure as a starting point, then cut along my chalk outlines.  I repeated this a second time about 1/4" from the first cut.....this gave it a nice amount of space for light to shine through.

After the cutting was done, I added a simple frame using the 1x2s.  Cut them and nail to the back first, then add your frame to the front to finish.  

With the frame on, I used MinWax Wood Stain in Espresso (leftover from my Front Porch Bench Project) to stain everything but the figures!  Give the whole thing a coat of sealer (for outdoor use) once the stain dries.

In order to make it stand in the yard, I cute my 10ft pvc pipe in half and mounted the two pieces to the back of the frame.  Place end caps on top and it easily goes into the ground with a rubber mallet or hammer.

I had my son help me once it got dark to place the spotlight in just the right spot behind it.  I love how it turned out!  Several friends, family, and neighbors have commented on it already too.  (I'm actually building another one by request from a friend this weekend!)

Please be sure to send a pic if you build one!
Merry Christmas!

This post is linked to these fun blog parties:

Saturday, August 27, 2016

DIY Front Porch Signs (using cabinet doors)

A visit to the Habitat Store yielded some great buys, including a cabinet door for $3 and cabinet panels in various sizes for $1 each!! I bought several and knew some of them would be perfect for porch signs. I used the cabinet door to make a new "welcome" sign last month.

I simply sanded down the finish on the inset and painted it white. I printed my lettering and traced them onto my cabinet door (using chalk on the back of the paper). Hand-painting the letters takes a bit of time but since the letters are fairly large, it went quickly. After the lettering was completely dry, I rubbed a bit of stain on the white paint to give it a more rustic, aged appearance and then roughed-up a few spots with sand paper.

The sign turned out cute and worked great on the porch this Summer! Still needing more of an update though, I saw a lovely bench from Amy at The Idea Room and knew that it was what my porch needed! And since I was building a pretty new bench this past weekend, I figured I'd take the opportunity to replace my old Scripture sign too. One of those $1 panels was the perfect size!

The panel is actually particle board covered in a wood veneer, but it took the stain and paint beautifully!
I stained the panel and then cut the lettering and image from vinyl using my Silhouette.


I let everything dry a couple of days while I was at work and on my next day off, I was able to peel the vinyl letters off revealing the stain underneath.

I sealed the whole sign with a clear coat and added ring hangers on the back.

It works perfectly on the wall above my new DIY bench. I can hardly wait to decorate for Fall with my new signage and bench!

Have you made anything new lately?





This post is linked to:


Tuesday, August 9, 2016

DIY Spindle Candlesticks

Any Fixer Upper fans out there? Have you made it to Magnolia Market yet?

I finally drove to Waco this Summer with my Mother and a friend for a Ladies Shopping Roadtrip! We hit Magnolia Market, Harp Design Co., several antique stores in Waco, and IKEA in Round Rock. It was a fun day and we gained tons of inspiration for future projects! We even got to sample a free cupcake from Chip & Joanna's new bakery, Flour, before it opened......very tasty!

FLOUR at Magnolia Market

The only disappointment in the day was that I wasn't able to get candlesticks from Harp Design Co. Have you seen them? They are simple but so pretty. And, apparently, extremely can only get them by pre-ordering. My mother said: " Make your own." Hmmmmm......well, obviously I can't turn my own spindles, but I do know of a place with a huge selection of antique spindles in all shapes, sizes, ages, etc.

DIY Spindle Candlesticks

One of my favorite places for project inspiration and supplies is Architectural Antiques here in Downtown San Antonio. My first chance to get down there was two weeks ago and I wasn't disappointed! I bought 4 spindles for $4 each and old wooden squares for bases for $0.50 each. The wide spindle was $10 but worth every penny because they are hard to come by. Because of its width, I decided a base wasn't necessary for it.

I dusted the spindles off and then soaked the spindles in a bucket of vinegar-water and let them dry in the sun. After they dried, I sanded them down and finished cleaning them up before I started painting and staining.

DIY Spindle Candlesticks

A little paint.....

DIY Spindle Candlesticks

A little stain....

DIY Spindle Candlesticks

A little more paint on one of them....

DIY Spindle Candlesticks
DIY Spindle Candlesticks

I added the turquoise paint on one of the taller spindles and love the finished color! It was created simply by layering the white paint, walnut stain, and turquoise paint and continually wiping with a cloth as I went.

The two shorter ones, I simply stained because I love the wood grain on them that is still showing through.

Then, in order to make the taller ones able to hold a taper, I drilled a hole in the center using a 13/16 bit....perfect fit!

DIY Spindle Candlesticks
I am still playing with candle sizes and need to make a run to Hobby Lobby to buy just what I want, but I LOVE how they turned out!
DIY Spindle Candlesticks
DIY Spindle Candlesticks
Now, go out and find some old spindles!!

This post is linked to:


Friday, May 20, 2016

Patriotic Door Decor

Patriotic Door Decor

Memorial Day is next weekend (and July 4th is just around the corner).....perfect excuse to get my patriotic decorations out today. However, I didn't have anything good for the front door. After searching Pinterest last night and seeing lots of lovely wreaths, I decided I wanted something different.

I love the baskets and buckets of flowers I see on doors, so I headed to Hobby Lobby this morning in search of the perfect container. It was one of those "I'll know it when I see it" shopping trips!

Hobby Lobby had plenty to choose from, but I finally settled on a very simple woven basket. I also picked up some faux greenery (my front porch gets too much direct sun to use the real thing), wired ribbon, and a package of flags.

I found some styrofoam in my stash to go inside the basket
I used a length of jute to make the hanging strap. I cut it short because I really didn't want it to show.

The bow.....hmmm.....I can make a terrific bow about every third attempt. Anyone else have this problem? Since its been awhile, I used this great tutorial from Tidbits & Twine. She has great photos for each step if you need help or just a refresher like me!

The flags were stuck into the styrofoam amongst the greenery and raffia. Then, I added my bow to the front using a little florist wire wrapped around the basket weave.

Simple, but I love how it turned out and how it looks on the front door!

Patriotic Door Decor

God bless America!