Tasty Tuesday - Quick and Easy Apple Turnovers

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

I'm generally a very "from scratch" kind of Cook, especially when it comes to baking. It may have something to do with my Super Mom/Martha Stewart delusion that says the harder you have to work on something, the better Mom it makes you. What? I did say I was delusional! Trust me with the second lil' one on the way, I'm trying really hard to switch to the "Work Smarter Not Harder" philosophy!

Anyway...This means that I tend to steer clear of what I call "cheater" recipes. You know, the quick and easy ones that call for some kind or another of condensed soup and usually a casserole dish. BUT, every once and awhile I come across a "cheater" recipe that is just too tempting to pass up, and so I want to share with you these...

Quick and Easy Apple Turnovers

They can be ready from start to finish in under 30 min. and are great for that "I slaved all day!" 
impression if you are having company over in the morning for a brunch or around the holidays.

You'll need:
A box of Puff Pastry (2 sheets per box)
A can of Apple Pie Filling (I got 12 from 1 can)

All you have to do is unfold a thawed sheet of puff pastry and cut it into four squares like pictured below.
Next add a few of the canned apple slices (3-4), and a little of the "apple goo" to one corner of each square. 
Top each apple pile with a dash of cinnamon, sprinkle of sugar, and "blob" of spread. (no measuring!)

I used a pizza cutter to make cutting the pastry dough easier.
Now just use your finger to dab a little water around the edge of the dough, fold the square into a triangle, and press to seal it up. You can use a fork to make it prettier if you'd like. Use a sharp knife to cut small air vents in the top of each triangle and pop them in the oven at 400 degrees for 20 min. That's it!

Make clean-up easier by lining the cookie sheet with parchment paper to catch any "goo" that escapes.

  Let them cool, sprinkle with powdered sugar and enjoy!

I've made these twice now in the past month, and Ant can't stop saying how good they are.
Maybe it's time for me to rethink my stand on those "cheater" recipes after all!
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Snapshot Sunday - Build-A-Bear

Sunday, February 26, 2012

It looks like the sickness we've been harboring around here for the past two weeks has 
FINALLY straightened itself out, and I for one could not be more happy to have a reprieve 
from the daily washing of sheets and screaming that accompanies the diaper rash of doom.

So to celebrate our families return to civilization, we decided to make a trip down to the 
closest Build-A-Bear Workshop so Reli could make a present for the baby.

Random Debate - What exactly do you call that outfit? Never knew we were so trendy!
 I say "hipster" (she had shades too!) but Ant says "baby grunge".  Thoughts? ;D

When I was pregnant with Reli, Ant and I made her a little bunny especially from Mommy & Daddy.
We even did the goofy things with the heart that they have the kids do and stuffed in one for each of us.
Does that sound really corny? Maybe it's the hormones, but I thought it was cute.

This time around we knew that we'd be making another critter for this baby, and figured that Reli would like to help. She had never been their before, and seemed a bit overwhelmed by the number of excited kids running around. But after spending some time just watching everyone else, I think she really enjoyed the experience. 

Now we have a special bear with three little hearts inside that Reli can give the baby when he gets here!
We better not have too many more kids or they'll start charging us for all the extra hearts!

I know some people have the first pair of shoes bronzed, or make plaster hand and foot prints.
My Grandmother used to have a little ceramic bootie made with her baby's "specs" painted on it.
Do you have any little traditions like this that you do when you're getting ready to add to your family?
Do the older kids help you make something for the baby? Did it help them with the transition?
We're still deciding if "the baby" will be getting a present for Reli too. Any suggestions?

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*This is not in any way a sponsored post. We just like stuffed animals.*
We've never actually purchased any of the accessories to go with them.

Monday, February 20, 2012

I'm sure most of you haven't even noticed my unexpected little hiatus, but for those who might have been sticking around hoping to see the baby projects I keep promising, I come bearing a simple explanation.

I have a sick toddler. Nuf said right?
I wish I could say it was something as simple as a cold or coughing, 
but I have been dealing with a full week of this...
and I'm NOT talking about potty training!

She doesn't ACT sick, isn't dehydrated, and isn't in any pain (except a wicked bout of diaper rash. sorry, TMI?), but for some reason I have not been able to get her to nap more than once or twice all last week. So besides; running to every store in town trying to find overnight diapers in a size 6 that might contain the mess, preparing special "sick food" entrees, and working my way through the immense amount of laundry that has been created by the leakage situation, there has not been much energy left for crafting or blogging. 

In other news, the baby is a very strong kicker, has decided to be nocturnal, and is totally starting to get on my nerves. Literally! (Trust me, if you've never heard of sciatica, you REALLY don't want to! LoL)

I desperately hope that the end of these trials is in sight, but both just seem to be "wait it out" kinds of problems. I'll return with plenty of projects as soon as I can, but for now I might as well enjoy all the extra couch time and Disney movies. Ahh. . .the joys of motherhood.

Hope you are all having a more enjoyable week.
Try to stay healthy!
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Everybody else is doing it...

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

So here is our wish that you have a...

It took almost 2 weeks, but we finally got around to taking a few pictures of the dress I made for this tutorial!
Luckily, Reli thinks this dress is "so cute" and had the time of her life running around the mall while I snapped pictures. Of course, she also told me the vacuum and fire alarms were "so cute" too, so who really knows?
I'm the one who dresses her, and I like it, so I guess that's what matters. Might even have to take off the red long sleeves so that she can wear it right on through the summer!

"I Jumping!"
 Better view of the back of the dress. It was hard to get a pic for the tutorial on a flat surface.

"HA HA HA HA...I funny Mommy!"
"Wuf you wif my heart..."
 Hope you have a great day with your Valentine!
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Have you all seen this?

Friday, February 10, 2012

Check Your Settings, Now!

This (the red) is a post about what it means to be a No-Reply Blogger and what you can do to fix it.
I've been meaning to write up something like this for a few weeks, but since Jamie of Scattered Thoughts of Crafty Mom has done the hard work, I figured I'd just share her's instead.

I have recently enabled the threaded comments for this blog, but if you aren't subscribed, it won't exactly help :/
So...Please, Please, PLEASE take the 2 seconds to double check that you are sharing your e-mail.
I love getting all your wonderful comments, and hate when I can't respond back!

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the BUMP

Thursday, February 9, 2012

A few of you have asked when you are going to get to see a picture of me and my ever expanding belly,
 and since we are such good friends, I'll appease you. But I'm also adding a disclaimer...

I am an EXTREMELY un-photogenic person!
I'm not kidding, fishing for compliments, or trying to be modest.
It is genetic. I get it from my Gramma. Honest. 
Neither of us can have our picture taken without making some kind of funny face! (I'm usually talking)
So I just wanted you all to know that for every one of these...

There are also at least 4 dozen of these...

Hopefully that (and the fact that I'm the one wielding the camera) will help explain why you don't see many pictures of me floating around this blog. It is practically guaranteed that I will never be jumping on the 
"What I Wore Wednesday" bandwagon for the same reason. 
(Not to mention that every week would only showcase different pajamas ; )

So, now that I've shared my embarrassing belly pictures with you, please understand if I don't make it a common practice in my final weeks. I'll make sure to post at least 1 more when I'm at the very end, but other than that I'll be more than happy to let the cute little kidlets take center stage from now on!

Oh, and just so you know, I have a whole pile of projects that are complete, but just need to be photographed and written about. Tutorials are practically coming out my ears right now! So please be patient with me while I enjoy these last little bursts of energy. Seriously, this is my dining table right now...

Well, back to the craziness!
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Where is all the BOY fabric?

Monday, February 6, 2012

This weekend I managed to sneak away (all by myself!) to the fabric store. 

We have passed the 30 week mark for this pregnancy and I figured it was about time that I buckle down and get started on the seemingly endless list of things I'd like to sew before the baby arrives. So off I went to Joann's AND Hancock's in hopes of finding some great BOY fabrics for all these projects. 
Instead, this is what I came home with...

WoW... I can use the teal one on the bottom can't I? Hmmm....
Well at least I DID manage to snag this completely gender neutral orange stripe!

The whole 1/3 yard of it out of the remnant bin : /

What am I doing wrong? Is it just me, or are there practically NO boy fabrics at the stores?
Yeah, I've seen a few with fish, and maybe a few with bugs, but even the stripes and dots seem to have a
really "girly" feel. And don't even get me started on the whole pastel teddy bear/zoo animal stuff. 
Yes, some of those are cute, but a person can really only handle so much pastel!

Pinned ImagePinned ImagePinned Image   Pinned Image  
        Pinned Image    Pinned Image
All the above fabrics are pinned HERE 

I have found a few fabrics online that I like, (most of them are pretty expensive!) and I've snagged probably a dozen adult tees at the thrift store to re-purpose for bibs and such, but is there something/someplace  that I'm missing? Do boys really only wear solids with things screen printed on them? Cuz if that's the case, I'm really going to have to brush up on my embellishing skills!

 At least Reli is going to have some really cute outfits when I finally get around to 
sewing things for her again!

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Striped Heart Dress (from T-shirts)

Friday, February 3, 2012

I'm not normally the type of Mom who has to dress her kid in a "special" outfit for every holiday that comes along. I like to be able to get as much use as possible out of the clothes that I put precious time into making, but when I saw this grey and red striped thermal at the thrift store the other day, I just knew that Reli would have something cute to wear for Valentine's Day this year.

So I grabbed the thermal, and an XL red T-shirt from the men's section.
And for less that $3 this is what I came up with!

The Striped Heart Dress
(don't you love my super original name?)

I was hoping to do a Photo shoot with it today so we could send V-day pics out to family members, but of course, we woke up to a yucky grey down pour. Oh well, guess that gives me more time to pick out fun props and accessories. (Why doesn't my kid ever own shoes to match anything?!)

Here is a close-up of the back. It is kinda hard to photograph, but there is a little pleat at the bottom that gives the dress a bit of a bustle kind of look. It wasn't in the original design, but Hooray, for "Make it Work" when it actually turns out better!

If you'd like to make your own, I put together a simplified tutorial for you, but make sure that you read
THE WHOLE THING before your get started because the bustle pleat adjustments are at the very end.

Yeah, I don't know why this picture is bigger, but I couldn't fix it : \
Gather Trick located HERE and a knit binding tutorial HERE

This is how I originally made the dress, but it turned out to be MUCH too big.
So rather than take everything apart I made an extra seam at center back to take in the excess.
If you wanted to do this on purpose you will need to...
(Please excuse my sad makeshift directions)

1. Make the back piece of your dress about 2 inches wider than the front.
2. Fold the back layer in half  and mark in 1 inch.

 3. Stitch at the 1 inch mark from the neck down to around lower back height.
4. Flatten the tube made by the row of stitches and tack it flat at the bottom.

You can trim the tube off above the tack line (on the left)
or just flatten it an tack it at the top too (on the right)
(Please, try it on your kid before trimming any "extra pieces" off!)

It would be easiest to preform these steps
AFTER attaching the ruffles, but BEFORE adding the neck binding.

Then once everything is together you can applique on some
hearts, stars, clovers, unicorns, or whatever shape sparks your lil girl's fancy.

I know this is a rather "slapdash" kind of tutorial, so please just let me know if you have any questions.
And don't forget to add a picture to my flicker group if you happen to make one of your own!

Happy (almost) Valentine's Day!
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Tape Binding Presser Foot

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

We've talked about bias tape before, and I've already shared tutorials about it, (here, here, and here)
BUT if I had known about this handy little presser foot, (purchased here) we would have done a lot more projects with binding! You see, I'm kinda lazy when it comes to well, pinning, and ironing, and pretty much taking the "proper" steps to make a project really look finished

Ok, maybe it isn't so much LAZY, as it is REALISTIC. 

I have a limited amount of time to work on most of my crafting projects, and more often than not there is a toddler hanging all over me while I'm doing anything. Tools like this one are a huge help because they can eliminate steps that you would normally not have time to do anyway and significantly reduce the amount of time you have to spend "fiddling" with a project. Check out this little video and tell me you've ever applied bias tape that quickly. (and evenly!

Kinda impressive isn't it?

And here is my little diagram to help explain what you can't really see in the video...

I can't wait to use this foot on a few of the baby projects that I have on my to do list. 
It should be especially helpful for these...
Pinned Image
from Martha, but I have another similar pattern

and these...
Click to Enlarge
Hooded Towels and Washcloth

and of course a few of these...
Baprons from Craftiness is not Optional

Plus it would probably be nice if I made something for Reli while I'm at it.
Let's just hope that my energy holds out long enough to get all these projects done!

Thanks for Visiting!
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