Friday, December 31, 2010

New music

So, I took my christmas music down. And, I'm slightly obsessed with Sondheim lately and has... no selection. Other than Sweeney Todd, which is fine, since I watched the DVD of it like 5 times a couple weeks ago. So, 3 of my faves from that show are now on my playlist. Have any of the 5 of you who read this even heard (of) Sweeney Todd or Sondheim?

Christmas gifts to family part II

The other gift my oh-so-lucky nephews and neice got is these laminated "quiet books". I looked up free printable games on the internet (word searches, mazes, dot-to-dot, matching games, and a bunch of tongue twisters for the 7-year-old) printed them off, cut them out and glued them to cardstock, then laminated them. I cut them to the same size, leaving a larger margin on the left where I then punched holes and tied it all together with ribbon.
Then, I got them a package of dry erase markers that have the eraser on the back of the marker.

Sorry for the blurriness, our camera is retarded.
Anyhow, this was for my brother and sis-in-law. She loves cooking, so I bought a herb garden starter at Home Depot, then glued on some burlap (gotta love the burlap, right?) and frayed the top and bottom, then tied some jute string and glued in place with 2 dots of hot glue.
My parents got "fire starters" for their fireplace. I'm not sure how successful these were. They had been burning a vanilla candle all day, so it was difficult to gauge how well these work.
Basically, you get corn husks from the store and some fresh herbs, spices, whatever you want.
Then run a corn husk under water briefly just so it won't break when you roll it up. Place contents that you want to in the middle and fold up the top and bottom and then sides. Finish off with some twine, or in my case (because I had so much) jute string.
The combos I used for them were: Rosemary and Sage (make sure you let them dry out at least overnight); cinnamon sticks and whole cloves; same as previous with dried orange peel; I also stuck some seeds from a vanilla bean in the previous two combos.

Christmas gifts to family part I

"Magnet Game" for nephews and neice.
You know those folder games that you copy out of a book and then color, laminate, put velcro and then glue to a folder? Well, I thought, what kid doesn't like magnets? So, I decided to turn it into a portable magnet game.
I started off with a frame I got from the D.I. (it didn't have glass or backing, so I'm not sure they even charged me for it, but most of the frames there were only $1) and painted it (2 coats of white acryllic paint)

Then I bought a small sheet of galvanized metal at Home Depot (it was only $5 and I have more left over) and they were nice enough to cut the size I needed for me.

Then I mod podged some cute scrapbooking paper to it.
I copied the face onto more scrapbooking paper and traced and cut out the little pieces (i.e. antannae, ears, hair, and rectangles on collar) onto different color paper and mod podged all those on.
We have a ridiculous amount of business card magnets from when my hubby was doing real estate left over, so I copied the face pieces onto the paper I wanted and mod podged those onto the business card magnets and cut them out. (I put a layer of mod podge on top to make them a little more durable.)
Then I used a plastic cd case to stick all the pieces in and used two business card magnets to stick it to the back.
My favorite response came from my oldest nephew, who happened to be the one opening the gift, he said, "I don't know what this is, but... I LIKE IT!!!"

Monday, December 27, 2010

Why I would never be consulted by Hallmark for romantic cards

Yes, you read that correctly, the card says, "I'm drawn to you like a fly to poo!" I cut one of those pom poms in half, then cut out wings from ribbon and glued them on, then cut out circles and used chalk to give them "texture" and put hearts above the "flies".
What? Don't you think this would sell well? ;)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Gift idea using old spaghetti jars

Or, you can get new jars, but if you save the old jars (and run them through the dishwasher, obviously!) you're pretty much saving even more (since you are buying spaghetti sauce anyway).
I had an old dress with a hole that I was saving for just such an occasion, bought some burlap (only $2.50/sq yd) and Jute string. I mod podged the material, then hot glued the burlap (only in the middle, then pulled threads on top and bottom to fray), tied the jute and hot glued where the knot was. Then just hot glued a button and used little mini clothes pins to attatch the cards with instructions.
and the only expense on top of pantry staples was buying the hazelnuts. I made sure to pick one that the wet ingredients would also be staples and therefore easier and faster for the recipients to put together. I put all the dry ingredients in And voila! Really cheap but (hopefully) cute gifts!

Monday, December 20, 2010

The movie I am most in love with

A few years ago I was looking up music by a composer whom I love and stumbled across clips from this movie put to a song of his. It looked so beautifully shot that I decided to rent if from the Library. Then I actually bought it (which speaks volumes in and of itself considering the cheapskate that I am) and proceeded to persuade everyone I could think of to borrow it. I have watched it countless times and some have borrowed it more than once just to watch it again. As my neighbor said, "I have never wanted two people to touch so much". It's a period drama which means that it can and does acheive unparalleled sexual tension while all clothes remain on and, as you might infer from the above quotation, very little contact actually happens.
Doesn't hurt that it stars Richard Armitage. One of the best things about this mini-series is that it has epic romance, but it has so much more than that as well. All the actors are top notch (I expect no less from BBC), the music is hauntingly beautiful, well directed, great screenplay.
Unfortunately the original video that led me to this great discovery has been taken off of YouTube (*grumble grumble stupid copywright police*)so, just for you, my handful of readers, I searched endlessly to find a new one that does it justice. I skipped over all that had contemporary songs (pet peeve of mine) and found one that has a song from the movie itself. As I post this, I think I'll watch it again and drool over Mr. Thornton.
I present you with BBC's fantabulous mini-series, "North & South"

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Okay, so I'm a huge nerd... And?

This is fanmade and amazing. I kept thinking "how did they get this to look like it's from a real movie?" Well, that's because all of it is. This person took footage from a bunch of stuff and made it look like it was all from one movie. Orson Scott Card had a link on his website saying this was the best one he's ever seen. Here's to hoping the real movie does actually happens and turns out well. And comes out within the next decade (It's been "in the works" for forever!) *fingers crossed*

Coconut Banana Bread with Lime Glaze

I almost entitled this "Need to put those overly ripe bananas to good use?"... then I thought better of it.
Anyhow, I normally am somewhat ambivalent toward Banana bread... banana is a very overpowering taste, but I found this recipe for fantastic Banana bread and very happy to announce that the other flavors help to balance the banana flavoring.
Tis way yummy! You should try:

Friday, December 3, 2010

Remember me touting "The Drowsy Chaperone" a while ago?

Well, here's probably THE funniest song from that show (that is filled with funniness (I'm pretty sure that's not even close to a legitimate word)) Who else would like to see Douglas Sills in this roll?

Super fast and easy AND yummy rolls

Have you ever been 40 minutes away from dinner and wished you had some yummy homemade rolls, but didn't remember to make some at 2:00 that afternoon? Well, you are in luck! My friend Jamie of "Jamie Cooks It Up" fame has fantabulous rolls (seriously the fluffiest rolls I've EVER made!) and all you have to do is mix them up let them sit for 5 minutes, divide them, stick them in 170-degree oven for 15 minutes and cook for 15 minutes - Seriously, that's it!!!! Here's a link to that recipe, but while you're at it take a look around her blog - there's definitely some yummy stuff there. I can highly recommend her Rumbi Mango Chicken Salad and Chicken Low Mein!