Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Oh So Easy Ice Cream Sandwiches

Summer Dessert from Scratch
Ice Cream Sandwiches from Scratch
I was feeling ambitious recently and made these chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches from scratch. When I say from scratch I mean the whole thing. Yes, I even made the vanilla ice cream.

Honestly, it was pretty easy, even from scratch. I was feeling all kitchen crafty so I did it. I thoroughly enjoyed the delight it brought to my boys and reveled in surprising my husband.  He is the chefy one at our house so it is kind of a big deal when I make anything from scratch.

If you happen to be feeling ambitious or kitchen crafty, go for it and make your own from scratch ice cream sandwiches, but if you're not...try these!
Easy Ice Cream Sandwiches
 Ice Cream Sandwiches with Store Bought Short Cuts
Store bought ice cream, graham crackers, and sprinkles make a fun and easy surprise for your family.  I know store bought ice cream sandwiches are inexpensive, but assembling your own will thrill your kids.

If your kids are old enough, try letting them make their own "recipe" by picking their favorite ice cream and pre-packaged cookies to combine. It is a simple and delicious kitchen craft for kids.

For the adult crowd, you can still keep it effortless by buying bakery quality cookies and premium ice cream.  You won't have to heat up the house to get a stellar dessert you can entertain with.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Handmade History: Beth

handmade history
These are the stories of items I didn't even realize I had saved, that were lovingly made by friends and family. They are all part of my family's handmade history. I bet you have a handmade history too. 

So I have a lot of sisters, six to be exact,  but the one who is closest to me in age is Beth. Well, her name is really Elizabeth, but I never call her that. Beth is one of my big sisters. She is the one who let me tag-a-long when we were little. She shared a room with me forever and even indulged my neat freak ways. She also watched over me in my first year of high school and made sure I always had someone to sit with at lunch. In short, Beth is a really great big sister.

When I had my first baby, Beth, having fabulous quilting skills, sent me this amazing baby blanket.
colorful baby quilt
 I loved it instantly. It is everything bright and graphic and fun in a 3' x 3' square. I often used it as a car seat cover to shield my baby from the sun.  Everywhere I went, people would ask me where I got such a beautiful baby blanket.

Now I loved this quilt and Beth knew I would because she is savvy like that, but it was actually a gift for my child. Here is how my child enjoyed his gift:

Only weeks old, he stared rapt at the patterns on the fabric, (particularly the black and white backing).

From 2-8 months, he spent many hours playing on this blanket.  It resisted bunching up even though he wriggled and squirmed fiercely.

As he became a toddler, it moved around from his bed and then to a chair.

Now he is five and he tells me what I am allowed to do with the special blanket his Aunt Beth made him.

I love Beth. I love sisters. I think they make marvelous aunts and even better friends.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Fourth of July Shirts with History

DIY fourth of July shirt
I have been having a lot fun with graphics and the Fourth of July this year. Making these holiday onesies was so easy, but I have two older boys who love when I make things for them too. So, I started looking for patriotic graphics to make shirts for them as well.

I could have used the flag graphics from my banner, but my oldest has been asking lots of questions about the founding of our nation, so I thought I would look for some images with a sense of history. Of course I thought of the Graphics Fairy. She finds vintage images and makes them accessible for FREE. There are thousands of great, copyright free graphics on her site. *Swoon.*

I found these patriotic images and fell in love. Generally, I am not a vintage, shabby chic sort of girl. I am definitely more retro. These images were perfect. They had a clean, simple design and yet still evoked history. I downloaded, inserted into Microsoft Word, and added some text.

DIY fourth of July shirts

 I instantly associated the horse image with Paul Revere's ride and the Revolutionary War. I made one version for my oldest with the year 1776 added because I knew he would ask about the numbers. He is curious like that. I made another version for my baby boy inspired by lyrics form the song Yankee Doodle. I kept the "July the 4th" image as is. It speaks for itself, don't you think? Now they all have festive shirts, but also shirts that spark conversations about the history of our country (sneaking in learning wherever I can).

I really loved the canon image from the Graphics Fairy too. It made me think of the story of Francis Scott Key writing the Star Spangled Banner. I added a few choice lyrics to that image too. It didn't make the cut for T-shirts this time around, but it is bound to sooner or later. What boy can resist a canon?

To make your own t-shirts all you need is:

Cheap T-Shirts (mine were $2.50 each!)
Graphics Fairy Images
Basic Image editing software
Iron-on Transfer Paper
Printer, or your local copy shop
A tiny smidge of patience

Once you have decided on your images, upload them into basic image editing software like PicMonkey.  Then, if desired, add text or other embellishments.  Reverse your image, including the text. Then print, cut out, and iron-on your t-shirt. It really is that easy, but for some more detailed instructions checkout this post. Enjoy!
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