Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Homemade Hot Chocolate Sticks!

I knew I wanted to make some kind of treat for my co-workers for the holidays
and when I was looking at numerous ideas online, I came up with the idea to make 

Now you're probably thinking,
Hot Chocolate Sticks? What's that?!?!
Well keep reading and I'll show you!

The Goods:
Dark Chocolate
Lollipop Sticks
Silicone Mold
Milk (For Making Hot Chocolate)
Mini Marshmallows (Optional)
Candy Canes (Optional)

Melt your chocolate and fill silicone mold. 
Once chocolate is set enough, add sticks
and the topping of your choice.
I decided to use only mini marshmallows.

Once completely set, remove from the silicone mold.

Package up into individual baggies.

And because I was giving them as gifts,
I added a mason jar, straw and candy cane too!

One dozen Hot Chocolate Stick treat bags!

These would make a great treat for any holiday.
I'm thinking New Years, Valentine's Day, Birthdays, etc.

Hope you all have a fun and safe New Year's Eve!
Here's to an amazing 2015 my friends!!!

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!!!

December 25th!
Christmas Day!

Now that I've sent or given out all my homemade cards this year,
I will leave you with a quick look at the cute ones I came up with!

Wishing a very MERRY CHRISTMAS to you all!
I hope your day is wonderful and spent with those you love.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Last Minute Gift: DIY Fingerprint Snowmen Ornaments!

With only two days left until Christmas,
I'm done buying and wrapping all my gifts,
but I know there are people that wait until the last minute!
And if that's you, I have a super easy and fun idea for you.

Last year, I started a tradition of making homemade ornaments.
I made Thumbprint Reindeer Ornaments to give as gifts.
I liked the idea and decided I would do it each year!

So I knew this year I had to do something equally as cute,
and after looking online for ideas, I decided to do

And this year, I personalized them depending on who I was giving it to.
For example, friends with a new baby got one with three snowmen - one tiny of course!

I've been a busy little elf this December, doing lots of crafts and baking,
and when making these I forgot to take a picture of "The Goods"
I'm sorry. Please forgive me! 

Just know you'll need the following supplies...
Clear Ornaments - I use glass, but plastic is probably more safe.
White Paint - any kind will do and I just used what I had.
Paint Pens/Markers - used for all the snowmen details.
White/Iridescent Crinkle Filler - optional, but I ended up using.

Now keep reading to see how I made all six of them!!

You can make your snowmen one of two ways.
You can paint your fingers and place them on the ornament,
or you can be a little more OCD (ahem - like me!) 
and use just your fingertips to make your snowmen.
Either way - make your snowmen and let dry completely.

Once dried, add your eyes, nose and buttons.

And then get creative adding accessories however you'd like!

This one is for the family mentioned above.

All six decorated and ready to be given as gifts!!!

Now that you see how simple it is,
get to work and make some of your own!!!

And since I've decided to make this a tradition,
I'd love some suggestions on ideas for next year's DIY ornaments!
I like the thumbprint/fingerprint them so I'd love to stick with that.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Friday Link Ups Galore!!!

After THREE weeks of Linking Up with three different blogs,
I'm back again for another fun Friday Link UP, 
but this time I'm linking up with ALL three at once!!

And with Christmas being less than a week away,
I thought it was the perfect time for this post
because it's all about preparations for the big day!

If you're not done yet shopping, wrapping, etc. just yet,
hopefully some of the below will help you!

Keep reading to find out about my
Christmas Day Preparations!

Gift Giving!
I love to see people happy with gifts I give.
And I make myself happy by not dealing with crowds!
I didn't go to the mall ONCE this season.
Every year I've done more and more online shopping.
And last year got smart when I started using Ebates!
Who doesn't want to get money back after shopping for others?
Sign up here if you haven't yet!!!

Fun Wrapping!
Even if the gift doesn't cost a lot or is homemade,
I enjoy wrapping and ribboning each gift that I give.
(Yes, I just said ribboning...)
I love all the fun paper, ribbons and bows
and have a hard time not buying more than I need.

DIY Decorations!
I LOVE Christmas Decorations.
See evidence here, here and here!
But I love them even more when they're DIY.
I was inspired by Karli when she posted this.
So what'd I do? I did one myself this year!
But changed a few things to make it my own!!!
A detailed post on the process can be found here.

Christmas Goodies!
I make some type of Christmas goody every year.
Some years more than others and I think this year takes the cake!
I spent ten, yes TEN, hours baking away this past Saturday.
I ended up with hundreds of goodies in six different varieties.
My coworkers, neighbors and local firemen were the lucky recipients!

Christmas Dinner Planning!
Last year I made the entire meal for 13 people!
You can read ALL about the deliciousness here.
We're doing a much more simple dinner this year,
but I'm still in charge of most of the cooking!
What are some of your must have's on the Christmas table?

Now for more Friday Link Up Fun, check out the blogs below!
Andrea and Erika's blogs from Friday Favorites.
 April and Christina's blogs from 5 on Friday.
Karli and Amy's blogs from oh hey friday!

Happy Friday and Happy Holiday All!!!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

DIY Christmas PEACE Decorative Sign + Coupon Code!!!

Around the holidays last year, 
I really liked the idea, but didn't like the price.
I thought to myself - hey I bet I could make that!!
And I bet I can make it WAY cheaper too!

I already had so much on my plate,
so sadly I didn't get around to making it last year.
But a few months ago I remembered the idea
and knew I wanted to make it for this Christmas!
And guess what?
I already had a piece of MDF the perfect size!
If that wasn't a sign (to make the sign - hahahaha)
I don't know what is!

After deciding I was really going to make it this year,
I decided on using vinyl letters instead of paint.
I know myself and if the letters were perfect,
I wouldn't be happy with the end result.
I measured my board and figured out what size letters I'd need.
I determined I wanted 8-inch letters and ordered them online.
While I was waiting for those to arrive in the mail,
I decided to figure out my painting technique.

I really wanted it to looked distressed, 
but I was using MDF board and not real wood, 
so I was a little scared how the sign would turn out.
After looking at numerous sites online,
 I decided to just give it a go!

The Goods:
MDF Board - 1 foot x 4 feet
Recycled Painting Paper
Green 8" Vinyl Letters
Vinyl Applicator
White Paint
Paint Brush
Steel Wool

Lay out your painting paper and get your paint ready.

Without putting too much paint on the brush,
paint the entire board, not covering up everything.

Let paint dry completely.
This shouldn't take long at all.
Because you don't use a lot of paint.

Next, take your steel wool and rub some paint off,
Keep working until you get your desired look.
I didn't have to remove much.

Once done, wipe down with a very damp cloth.
Let board dry completely before starting the letters.

Using a tape measure and pencil,
measure out your letter placement.
Once I thought I knew where each went,
I taped them down lightly with scotch tape.

Oh yeah - this guy was my letter helper.
He stayed by my side the entire process!!

Once done taping all the letters down,
step back and make sure everything is inline
and looks how you want it to.

Next, place the vinyl according to your markings
and use the vinyl applicator to make sure it adheres.

Remove the transfer paper and onto the next letter!

Anddddddddd you're done after just five letters!!!

Displayed outside my front door.

Even though this doesn't look exactly like the original inspiration,
I am SUPER happy with the way it turned out.

Alphabet Signs is now offering my blog readers a special deal!!!
Head on over to their site, use Coupon Code ROBYNSPEACE 
and you'll receive $14.25 off PLUS free shipping!!
(Sorry - Pennsylvania customers subject to sales tax.)
Enter the coupon code in step 2 of the checkout process.
Look for the "Have A Coupon" link.
Offer valid until January 31, 2015 for the first 10 customers.
Happy Shopping!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Five on Friday Link Up - Christmas Goodies!

I'm hoping to make some Christmas Goodies this weekend.
It's something I look forward to and do every year.
I tend to change up a little year to year, but I have some favorites.

I'm linking up again today to share my 5 Favorite Christmas Goodies!
Keep reading to find out what they are!

Robyn's Five Favorite Christmas Goodies!

1. Chocolate Chip Cookies
Who doesn't like Chocolate Chip Cookies?
I mean really! I can't think of a single person.
And the way I make mine - they stay soft for awhile!

2. Spritz Cookies
I discovered these little delicious treats years ago
and make them every year - even years I say I won't.
They are just that good and super easy too.

3. Snickerdoodles
These cookies are absolutely amazing!
I almost forgot about them until looking at past posts.
And after that, knew I had to make some this year!!

4. Persimmon Cookies
I know that I really like these cookies,
but year after year I forget how great they are!
I'm thinking of putting my own spin on them this year.

I blogged about this amazing treat the beginning of 2014.
And funny enough my brother recently asked for the recipe.
I can't remember the last time I didn't make this at Christmas,
so it will most likely make an appearance again this year!

So - what are some of your favorite holiday treats?
And do you like baking them or just enjoy eating them?

Now head on over to April and Christina's blogs to check out more of the link up!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

That Time Christmas Took Over My Apartment

Yup! You read that right, folks.
Christmas has officially taken over my apartment!
It started the day after Thanksgiving and has continued ever since.

I'm pretty sure I'm done decorating for 2014, 
so I figured it was about time I share my Christmas decor! 
Please keep reading to see all the holiday festiveness.

Going to the local lot and getting my Christmas tree!
A girlfriend went with me to get my tree this year,
and she was SHOCKED they strapped it to my sedan!

Now that I have the tree, let's start from the front door.

Getting festive with my DIY yarn wreath that I made last year.
And the DIY copycat PEACE sign I made this year.
Detailed post on the sign coming soon, so check back!

Little Christmas knickknacks scattered around my apartment. 

Christmas kitchen fun!

My wonderful Christmas tree with and without the lights on.

My TV stand gets decorated for every holiday.

And my mantel gets decorated too!

Even my bathrooms get decorated!

Love me some festive towels.

Homemade snowflakes that have amazingly lasted a few years!

LOVE these banners, but I can't get them to stay put!
Every time I walk by the den, the darn thing is dangling.

Ahhhhhh flannel sheets! I put them on this past weekend,
and have loved climbing into my cozy bed every night since!

See? Holiday towels once again!

And last but certainly not least,
GIANT ornaments hanging outside.

Hope you enjoyed my Christmas decorations tour.
And if you'd like to see past year's decorations,
then check out 2013 and 2010