DIY $3 Dessert & Treat Stand

By Jess on September 19th, 2014

DIY-3-Dessert-Treat-Stand

I showed you how to make one for Christmas, but why only have these simple and cheap stands for the holidays? You can make them and use them year round! Get everything either at the Dollar Store or Thrift Store, mix and match the colors, designs, and materials for your tastes and make them shabby chic! You can make them with a plate or a bowl on top, or you can make it with only 2 tiers instead of three. Thanks to Jamie at The Crafting Chicks for the cute and easy tutorial!

What You’ll Need:

  • 2 candlestick holders
  • A larger plate or platter
  • A slightly smaller plate
  • A bowl or another platter
  • Permanent craft glue (like E6000 or Gorilla Glue)

Directions:

  1. Use a liberal amount of glue on the bottom of the first candlestick holder and stick it to the bottom plate in the middle (either measure to find exact middle or eyeball).
  2. Glue top of candlestick holder and place the littler plate on it.
  3. Repeat with the next candlestick holder and bowl.
  4. Allow to dry for an hour before use, then enjoy!

HAND WASH AND DRY ONLY! 

Recipe: Copycat Cracker Barrel Hash Brown Casserole

By Jess on September 19th, 2014

copycat-cracker-barrel-hash-brown-casserole

One of my favorite restaurants for breakfast is Cracker Barrel, and I mean beyond the giant checker board and triangle peg games. Cracker Barrel’s Hash Brown Casserole is my favorite restaurant breakfast food. I am thrilled to have found how to make it at home!

Ingredients:

  • 8 Tbsp cold unsalted butter, divided
  • 4 Tbsp all-purpose flour, divided
  • ¼ tsp poultry seasoning
  • ¼ tsp onion powder
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • ½ tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth, divided
  • ½ cup chopped onions
  • 1 (26 oz) package frozen shredded hash browns
  • 1 (8 oz) package shredded colby cheese

Note: You can cut the casserole in half and bake into two 8×8″ casserole dishes, then freeze or save for later use.

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 °F.
  2. In medium saucepan over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Once butter is melted, add 2 tablespoons of flour and all listed seasonings. Whisk to create a paste. Add milk, whisking as you pour. Whisk until completely combined.
  3. In a quart sized mason jar combine 2 tablespoons flour and chicken broth. Seal tightly and shake the living tar out of your mixture. You will create a smooth flour mixture for thickening your sauce called a slurry.
  4. Slowly pour slurry into mixture, whisking constantly. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.
  5. Pour soup into 9×13 casserole dish. Add remaining 6 tablespoons butter and onions. Stir until butter is melted. This will also start to cool your soup. Add cheese and frozen hash browns. Mix well with a spoon.
  6. Bake 25 minutes or until the top is golden brown.  Note: You can add more cheese to the top of the casserole in the last 10 minutes of baking if desired.
  7. Let cool slightly, cut into 12 pieces, serve and enjoy!

Recipe: Crock Pot Veggie Pizza

By Jess on September 17th, 2014

Slow-Cooker-Veggie-Pizza

Skip pickup or delivery pizza tonight. Make your own pizza at home using your crock pot. It’s true! The recipe by Simple Nourished Living (who has a huge variety of slow cooker meals, by the way) is healthy and couldn’t be easier!

Ingredients:

  • 1 refrigerated pizza dough (11 to 14 ounces)
  • 1 cup pizza sauce or marinara sauce
  • 1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • Any sliced veggies of your choice!

Directions:

  1. Spray your slow cooker with cooking spray to make sure the pizza crust doesn’t stick.
  2. Place the dough into the crock pot and spread out onto the sides about an inch using your fingers.
  3. Evenly spread sauce onto the crust then put 3/4 cup of the cheese over the sauce.
  4. Toss in the vegetables and spread them out all over the pizza, covering it. Then put the rest of the 1/4 cup of cheese on top of the veggies.
  5. Cover your crock pot and cook on HIGH for 2 to 2-1/2 hours or until the crust begins to brown around the edges.
  6. Uncover and move lid quickly to make sure the condensation doesn’t drip onto your pizza.
  7. Turn off crock pot and let stand for 15 minutes.
  8. Using 2 spatulas, you should be able to lift it right out of the cooker.
  9. Cut into 8 pizza slices and enjoy!

Easy Natural DIY Lip Balm

By Jess on September 17th, 2014

diy-lip-balm

Why spend $3 or more per tube of lip balm? You can make it yourself in just minutes and for a fraction of the cost. Plus, every ingredient is all natural and safe to use over and over again! The directions below will make a couple of small lip gloss jars or tubes. You can double the recipe or stick to the ratio of 1 part beeswax to 2 parts oil to make as much as you want! Adding different oils will feel and taste different, so experiment and find what you love most.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 tsp. of grated packed down beeswax or beeswax pellets
  • 2 tsp. of coconut oil
  • 4-5 drops of Vitamin E oil
  • 1/2 tsp. of honey
  • To make colored lip balm, you’ll need some of your favorite blush or lipstick (optional)

Directions:

  1. Mix all the ingredients together and microwave for 10 seconds. Stir, then another 10 seconds. Do this over and over until it is fully melted and mixed together.
  2. Once everything is melted and mixed, IMMEDIATELY and carefully pour the mixture into the container of your choice.
  3. Allow to cool and fully harden (a few hours) before using or giving as a gift.

DIY Bath Paint for Kids

By Michelle on September 15th, 2014

DIY-Bath-Paint-F2BF

Have you spent tons of money on buying fun things to do for your kids or grandkids in the bath tub? With all the fancy toys, coloring crayons, paints etc they have on the market now. You could probably spend a pretty penny on just bath entertainment for kids alone. Here is a fun, quick, and of course frugal way to letting your kids have some bath time fun, and saving your money. Mommy is happy = Everyone is happy.

DIY Bath Paint for Kids

Needed:

1. Inexpensive Shaving Cream – buy whatever is on sale, or get some at your local Dollar Store.

2. Food Coloring

Directions:

1. Mix chosen food coloring into a small bowl of shaving cream. Or if you are going to make up more than one color a muffin tin works perfectly.

2. Give to child to have fun.

That’s it! How simple was that!!!!

Have fun!

DIY 5-Minute Fashion Pearl Statement Necklace

By Jess on September 15th, 2014

diy-pearl-statement-necklace

Statement necklaces are so popular right now, and the pearl ones are super expensive. They are obviously faux, but even then, they can be upwards of $30 or more. Make them into a statement necklace by yourself with just a few inexpensive pieces that you can find at craft stores, thrift stores, or even around the house in only 5 minutes! Thanks to A Matter of Style for the super cute tutorial!

What You’ll Need:

  • Two pearl necklaces about 26″ long (or a long string of pearls cut into two 26″ long strands and a double string clasp, both from craft stores)
  • Two fashion costume rings (at least one adjustable in size)
  • 2 pieces of metallic wire

Directions:

  1. Put a strand of pearls through one of the rings (doubled up). Then put the other necklace through the same ring, so there are four lines of pearls through one ring.
  2. Do the same on the opposite side of the strands with the other ring.
  3. Fasten the rings to the strings with the metallic wire.
  4. If you are making the necklace yourself, attach the strings to the clasp, otherwise make sure that the necklace is long enough to fit over your head.
  5. Wear the necklace and keep the rings slightly asymmetrical, one lower than the other.

DIY Threaded Rhinestone Hoop Earrings

By Jess on September 13th, 2014

DIY Flossed Rhinestone Hoop Earrings

You can buy your own pair of fun threaded rhinestone earrings for $5-$15 each pair, but that gives you just ONE pair. If you want to get a pair for many different outfits or for different seasons, then you’ll go broke! Spend a few minutes and make them yourself with this tutorial from Just B.

What You’ll Need:

  • Rhinestone chain (can be purchased at art supply or craft stores)
  • Hoop earrings (in the same metal color as whatever the rhinestone chain comes on)
  • Embroidery floss (whichever color you’d like!)
  • Hot glue gun

justBtutorialpics

Directions:

  1. Cut the rhinestone chain into 2 strips of the length of about half of the hoop earring.
  2. Lightly apply hot glue to the rhinestone chain and place onto the bottom half of the hoop (or if you’d like to show more rhinestone, then put it more toward the front of the hoop). Doesn’t need to be neat since the thread will be going over the glued part.
  3. Tie a knot around the earring on the BACK of the hoop with the floss. Put it between the first 2 rhinestones.
  4. Wrap the floss between each rhinestone (back and forth) making sure to wrap the side of the floss that sticks out from the knot back into the rhinestones. You don’t want to cut the end because the floss will unravel.
  5. When you reach the end, switch directions and go back toward the other side of the rhinestone chain. This should cover the whole chain.
  6. When you’re back to the other end, double knot the end of the floss and snip. Since this is the back of the earring, it will be barely noticeable.
  7. Put them on -TAH-DAH!!! Makes a great gift. So easy you could make DOZENS of them.

Recipe: Oreo and Peanut Butter Brownie Cakes

By Jess on September 13th, 2014

Oreo Peanut Butter Brownies

These VERY yummy little brownie cupcakes are so easy to make, you may never go back to regular brownies or cupcakes again. Make them for your next party or potluck! Big thanks to FoodSnots on Instructables for the recipe! Ingredients:

  • 1 box brownie mix, 8×8 inch size
  • 24 Oreo Cookies
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a 12 muffin cup baker with paper liners and spray generously with cooking spray.
  2. Prepare brownie mix according to package directions, then spoon just enough brownie batter to cover the bottom of the liners completely.
  3. Spread a teaspoon of peanut butter over 2 Oreo cookies, stack them, then place them in the lined cups. Repeat.
  4. Spoon 2 tablespoons of brownie batter over each of the stacked Oreos and let it run down the sides of the cookies.
  5. Bake cookies and brownies for about 14 minutes or until brownies are cooked through (don’t be fooled by the “shiny” top, they may already be baked fully).
  6. Let cool completely then serve or store in an airtight container with a slice of bread to keep them moist for up to a week.

DIY Elastic FOE Headbands Tutorial

By Jess on September 11th, 2014

DIY Elastic FOE Headband Tutorial

You can either spend $3 or more for one headband on Etsy or other shop, OR you can follow my directions to make adult and/or children’s sized elastic headbands for about $1 or less and in the design of color of your choice. I chose to do it on my own when I found an epic deal on Frozen and Disney Princess FOE for literally less than $1 per yard shipped on a Groopdealz or Jane steal, so I had to figure it out to surprise my girls and use my own pictures as the tutorial!  The headbands literally took me less than 2 minutes to make 2-3 and look exactly like what you buy at the stores – and this is my first time making them :)

You can also make your own elastic hair ties with the tutorial I posted previously, and you can make ties with leftover FOE.

Note: Some shops take a long time to ship, so order in plenty of time if you are (or your child is) going to need to wear the headband for a special occasion.

What You’ll Need:

  • Fold Over Elastic (FOE) ordered with the designs or colors you want (1 headband: 18″ for big kids & adults, 16″ for baby/toddler)
  • Scissors
  • Ruler or measuring tape
  • Optional: Lighter or matches

Directions:

  1. Gather all supplies and decide which sized headbands you are making – adults and kids 4+ wear 18-in long FOE, while toddlers and babies wear 16-in long FOE. Use your best judgement on each. It’s better to cut too long then crop down than to cut too short and have to make them into hair ties.
  2. Measure out your first length of FOE. DO NOT STRETCH THE ELASTIC WHILE MEASURING! This will make the length inaccurate. Double check the length measurement again, then cut the elastic.
  3. Using the elastic you just cut as your guide, cut as many pieces of the FOE as you’d like to make into headbands.
  4. Fold in half the first headband and line up the edges. If they aren’t straight, cut them into a straight line.
  5. Now is the time you can decide to use a lighter or a match to melt the edges together to prevent fraying in the future. I didn’t do it, but I may choose to do it later.
  6. Holding both ends, tie the headband ends together as closely to the end as you can and tighten into as small of a knot as you can.
  7. Repeat 4-6 until you are finished with all your headbands. This should only take you a few minutes to make 10 or more headbands!

20+ Recipes for Homemade Flavored Coffee Creamer

By richel on September 11th, 2014

homemade coffee creamer

My hubby and I love coffee in the morning with that lovely and oh so expensive flavored coffee creamer.  It is super expensive and it seems that prices are continuing to rise.  You can make this for just over 1/2 the cost of those that you buy in the store.  If you can grab the ingredients on sale, grab it for less than half the cost.

Ingredients for the Base:

  • 14oz sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 3/4 cup milk or cream (whole, lowfat, skim, almond, soy, heavy cream, half & half etc – whatever your preference, however the more fat, the more creaminess)

Then you need to choose which is your flavor choice.  If the flavor your choose has an ingredant that is powdered (like cinnamon or cocoa) then heat about 1.2 cup of the base and disolve the power in that first…it helps so that your creamer is not grainy!

Choose Your Flavor

French Vanilla Creamer

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract OR vanilla coffee syrup (most grocery stores have this now where they sell coffee or get it at Stabucks)

Vanilla Bean Coffee Creamer

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste (vanilla extract will not work)

Chocolate

  • 2-3 tablespoons chocolate syrup (any brand, I like Hershey’s)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Chocolate Almond

  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract

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