Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Tutorial- Make Recycled Handmade Paper

Today I'm excited to be guest posting my handmade recycled paper tutorial over at Ready, Set Craft!

Here are a few bonus tips and ideas:

  • Make a cast paper shape using a cookie cutter. For the star I dipped the frame into the paper pulp, placed the cookie cutter on top and removed the excess pulp around the star. Then I removed the excess water as shown in the tutorial.
  • Break up bits of dried leaves and flowers and sprinkle them onto the wet paper.

  • Or try adding glitter for some sparkle.

  • You can even experiment with making a plantable paper by adding seeds to almost dry paper. Once the paper has been used you can plant it and the seeds will grow.

  • Tint paper by adding in colored tissue paper, or party streamers.

(I made this sheet light green by using some leftover tissue paper)
  • You can make scented paper by adding herbs or essential oils to the paper pulp (and bits of pine needles will make a nice scented Christmas paper).

To get the step by step on how easy it is to make your own paper- pop over to Ready, Set, Craft and check out my tutorial.

Have A Great Day! Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Cricut Cake... it's heeeeere!

I was so exited when I saw the big box waiting on the porch!

And I've been thinking about this... it just so happens that between now and the rest of the year are when most of my cake making opportunities come up on the calendar.

  • Mother's Day (although it's a busy week next week so I'm not so sure I'll have time to play with the cricut before Sunday.
  • Hubbies Birthday
  • Mom's Birthday
  • 4th of July
  • Our Anniversary
  • Halloween
  • Sister's Birthday
  • Nephews 1st Birthday!
  • Mom-In-Law's Birthday
  • Thanksgiving
  • My Birthday (ok so I know most people don't make their own cakes but if this is as much fun as I think it's going to be I may have to make an exception this year)
  • Christmas- it's a long season so there has to be a cake making opportunity for some festive party.

Who knew I was missing so many opportunities to decorate cakes all these years!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Strawberry Rhubarb Muffins: Cupkins May

Cupkins- is a collaboration between Joanne from Ready, Set, Craft! and I. Each month we pick a theme and make a cupcake or muffin that follows that theme.

Now that it's getting warm here in the northern parts of the country it's almost time for fresh picked berries! (Yum!!) So for May Joanne and I chose Strawberries as our theme.

Strawberry picking always reminds me of my grandmother. She loved growing berries herself but she also always went to a u-pick farm to get flat of berries enough for tons of pies and jams.

The other thing I always think about is the Rhubarb that she grew. I would never eat it as a kid- or really an adult. In fact before I made these muffins I'd only ever eaten Rhubarb once before. Despite never eating it I've always remembered the big red stalks that would come up on the edge of her garden ever year.

This year I've been making an effort to introduce more and new fruits and veggies to our household diet. So in that spirit I ventured out of my comfort zone and decided to make strawberry rhubarb crumble top

And as it turns out I really enjoyed the Rhubarb! This has become my favorite strawberry muffin recipes- from now on rhubarb is definitely going to be seen more frequently in this house.

Here's the Recipe:

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees
  • 1.5 cups of flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup of apple sauce
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup milk (I use non-fat)
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 strawberries diced (probably about a cup)
  • 1/2 a small stalk (probably 1/2 cup) of rhubarb peeled and dice
First add all the dry ingredients to a mixing bowl. Then add the applesauce, milk, egg, oil and stir just until combined. Don't over-mix or the batter will get chewy. Now add the berries and the rhubarb and mix until incorporated.

At this point you can spoon the batter equally into muffin tins. I grease mine with non-stick spray but you can use liners if you like. This will make 6 large muffins, 12 standard size or 25 minis.

For crumble topping:

I have to admit I did this more by eye and less by measurements. I estimated the amounts below but if you're comfortable with "winging it" on the crumble topping and want something really exact there are lots of basic recipes online.

  • 2 tablespoons four
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Cinnamon to taste (probably a few teaspoons) I gave it a few good shakes all over
  • a dash of salt
Put all these ingredients into a small mixing bowl. Use your fingers or a fork (I think you're fingers work the best though) and mix until crumbles form. Generously sprinkle this on top of each uncooked muffin before placing them into the oven.

Mmm- I have a weakness for anything with crumble topping

Bake muffins at 375 until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

For large muffins mine usually take between 18 and 21 minutes. These took 20 minutes.

Yum- they came out so moist

Now head on over to Joanne's blog (by clicking the Cupkins logo below) to see the delicious Strawberry themed cupcake she's come up with. I had a bit of a sneak peak this month.... and I love how these Strawberry Lemonade Cupcakes sound... yup that's right I said Strawberry Lemonade, perfect for summer!

Seriously Isn't that the yummiest looking thing!

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