Thursday, January 27, 2011

Getting ready for Valentine's Day!

It has been FAAAAAR too long since I posted on this blog.  I did so many cute crafts for Christmas and did I post them?  No, I sadly didn't :( As organized as I was trying to be during the holidays, I was just unable to find the time and energy to post some festive tutorials.   It's a delicate balance between the roles of mom, wife and crafty crafter :)  But hey, it's almost Valentine's Day and I thought I would try to post some cute, super simple projects in case you love the holiday as much as I do!  And let's face it, try to get this blog back on track before it's the 4th of July :) 


Anyhoo, the other day we needed to get out of the house and since it has been rainy and gray here for quite a while, it had to be indoors.  I ran to our local party supply store with my sidekick (aka my little mister) and found some white cupcake boxes.  Hmm, lots of ideas running through my mind...

Instead of cupcakes, my husband John made some of his fabulous chocolate chip cookies (I will post the recipe below)  Seriously, the secret is the ground oatmeal!!!  Crispy edges and chewy middles!

I punched out some scalloped circles from colorful scrapbook paper.  Then I printed and cut out some little tags that I made in Photoshop (you can make these in MS Publisher, Photoshop, Illustrator...whatever you prefer).  

Or if you don't want to bother with making the labels, you can download them from my Etsy store for $2.  Yep, easy easy!  Instant labels that you print onto white cardstock and no shipping charges involved :)
Just glue them on top of the scalloped circles, use a small hole punch and make side by side holes at the top, and tie your box up with colorful baker's twine, yarn, ribbon.  I actually picked up an extra package of cupcake boxes for my mom and I'm sending these to her along with the labels so she can make some for her friends.  Wouldn't it be such a cheerful surprise to receive an unexpected treat so nicely packaged?  I think surprises are the best :)

MORE IDEAS!
A cupcake personalized with your friend's initial written in frosting and sprinkles scattered on the bottom of the box for decoration.

A cupcake liner filled with fancy candies (these candies are from one of my favorite candy shops in San Fran, Fionas) or non fancy candy for that matter...I think peanut M/M's in red and pink are darling!

Use a paper doily to line your cupcake box and fill it with non-edible goodies like a small pot with a packet of flower seeds.  

As always, I would love to see your creations!  

Best Chocolate Chip Cookies EVER!!

Ingredients
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour + 1 cup ground oatmeal (finely ground) - be sure to actually measure exactly, too much flour makes it too cake-like
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons hot water
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped walnuts

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
Cream together the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Dissolve baking soda in hot water. Add to batter along with salt. Stir in flour, chocolate chips, and nuts. Drop by large spoonfuls onto ungreased pans.
Bake for about 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until edges are nicely browned.