Sunday, October 19, 2014

Cinnamon Applesauce Christmas Ornaments

Hello, fellow crafty people!  Yep, still in holiday mode and just completed my latest craft.  Cinnamon Applesauce Christmas Ornaments.  I have seen these around for years and have never made any.  I came across a few "recipes" on the internet and reviewed the rumblings of its makers.  The ornaments don't seem to dry properly and crumble.  I found a recipe at (you can follow the link here) and gave it a whirl.  Well, problem solved.  Glue is the solution.  I also doubled the recipe and managed to get a baker's dozen of ornaments.  Remember, because there is glue in the recipe, make sure the kiddos don't try to eat the dough, or feed them to the dog or Dad.  That would be bad.
Here's the recipe I used:
1-1/2 cups cinnamon
2 tsp nutmeg
1 cup warm applesauce (25 seconds or so in the microwave will do it)
4 tablespoons white glue
Mix it all together in a bowl and then knead until stiff.  (The mixture was a bit crumbly, but held together nicely when I formed it into a ball.)
I then worked in batches and sandwiched the dough between some plastic wrap instead of the foil that was recommended so I could gauge the thickness of the dough when rolling it out to 1/4".
I used a nice big snowflake cookie cutter and used a straw to make to hole for the ribbon.  Very important step.  Don't forget!
Then I set them to dry on the rack.  Our house is very cool when it's rainy, so I just let them air dry out for a few days on the table.  I think next time I will try drying them in the dehydrator. 
After they were all dried out, I used an unused nail file to tidy up the ragged back edges.  Worked nicely it did!
I found some pretty red and white ribbons and tied it on the ornament by folding it in half and slipping it through the hole, and then slipping the tails through the loop.  Then I tied a knot at the middle of the ribbon, leaving about a 3" loop for the hanger.  Then I tied a nice little bow at the top to settle the ornament nicely on the branch of the Christmas tree.  I put a little clear nail polish on the back of the bow to secure it and left that to dry.

The cinnamon and nutmeg make the house smell heavenly! 
By the way,  there are only 9 Fridays until Christmas!  :)

Friday, October 17, 2014

Burlap Christmas Wreath

Well, it's official.  I am in Holiday Mode.  The house is decorated with the standard pumpkin paraphernalia, bright orange berry and leaf garlands, lighted branches, and of course, the smell of my latest candle purchase, Pumpkin Ginger Bark.  (I am addicted to Yankee Candle!)  I made a huge batch of homemade soup with some left over turkey that was smoked on the Traeger, some carmelized onions, kale, carrots, celery, mushrooms, garlic, and some nice dried herbs.  Talk about good!  I'm even more excited because my Mom is coming down from British Columbia for Thanksgiving week!  She hasn't experienced my holiday mode for quite some time, so she is in for a treat!
Today, and actually all of this week, I have been in Christmas mode.  Yep, I know it's early, but if the stores can decorate, I can get to making Christmas crafts.  I have always wanted to make my own burlap wreath, but was always intimidated by the gorgeous ones I see on Etsy and in the fancy holiday catalogs.  They look very complicated and intricate, and as a crafter, I do appreciate all the hard work that goes into making such beauties.  Needless to say, I overcame my fear and watched a few videos on Youtube to see how they were made.  I felt silly!  They are very easy to make and just take an hour or so with some easily found supplies.  I found all of mine at Wal-Mart.
Two rolls of burlap garland, a 18" wire wreath, some ribbons from the Christmas wrapping section, some cute birdie ornaments (sorry, forgot to add them to the photo shoot), floral wire, scissors and wire cutters.  Oh, and a bit of jute twine.  That's it.  Roughly under $15 total to make it.
Check out how nice it turned out!

Stay tuned for the next post.  More handmade Christmas goodness to come!