Friday, July 26, 2013

Jello Molds -- For the Young and the Old

When I say the words Jello Mold, what comes to mind?  For me, I think of old ladies that lunch.  Isn't that something they would bring to a lunch?  Jello in the shape of something, with fruit in it?  I also think of Aunt Bethany from Christmas Vacation.  She was kind of enough to bring a special jello mold to dinner.

Every so often, you can find special Jello molds in the grocery stores, especially when a kids movie comes to the theaters.  I wasn't looking for this Monsters University mold, but when I saw it, I picked it up. I attempted to make Jello Jigglers, but those were an epic fail.  EPIC. FAIL.

I started to think of what else I could use this mold for.  Clay?  Really?  What the heck would I do with a clay monster.  Melted crayons?  Aren't they all the rage right now?  I see a lot of crayon ideas on Pinterest.

How about candy?  This mold is really no different than the chocolate candy molds you can purchase from the arts-and-crafts store.  In fact, this one is way cooler because its Monsters University.  You can make your own chocolate monster.

The gangs all here
Meet Squishy

This is Art, who is voiced by Charlie Day (who happens to be my favorite from It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia)



It's not rocket science to make these.  You need to get chocolate wafers, which you can find at the arts-and-crafts store, or even your grocery store.  Following the melting directions on the packaging, pour the chocolate in the mold, and allow the candy to set.  The entire process takes less than a 1/2 hour.  I only had milk chocolate on hand, so mine look a little boring.  You could really jazz things up by using the colored chocolate -- make a blue Sully and a green Mike.  The sky is the limit.

And if you haven't seen Monsters University yet, I just have to ask....What are you waiting for?

Until next time.....

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas.....

The coolest thing arrived in the mail today.


That's right.  The Monkey got a postcard from her Elf on the Shelf, Bob.  He and his other elf friends are on a much needed, and equally deserved, Florida vacation.  Bob is having a great time, and by the looks of the photo, he is hanging pool side with his girlfriend.

His girlfriend?!  That blew the Monkey's mind.  Who knew Elves could date?  She thought they were too busy making the toys.  Speaking of his girlfriend, check out her bikini.  She's rocking it.

I can't take any credit for this awesome idea.  This postcard came from Elf Outfitters, a new business that took legs in December 2012.  The creators wanted to raise the bar, so they came up with great accessories for the elves, including cool dress up kits.  My favorite is the Elf Superhero Kit because we are a house of superhero fans, and I think a lot of parents can agree -- the Elf can often save the day!  The website also has free printables like scavenger and treasure hunts.  They also send postcards like the one the Monkey received so your child can experience the magic throughout the year.

Here's the cool first giveaway!  I have been given the chance to offer one of my readers a $10 gift certificate to Elf Outfitters.  That's right!  You can get your own Superhero Kit and postcard!  Here's how to enter.

  • Visit Elf Outfitters, and check out all the cool stuff they have to offer (including free printables!).
  • Leave a comment in this post with your name, email address, and be sure to tell me what your favorite Elf Outfitters accessory is and why.
  • Enter by Friday, July 26th, at midnight.  On Saturday we will randomly choose a winner.
  • Be sure to LIKE Elf Outfitters on Facebook.

Good Luck Everyone!

**Legal News: I was compensated for this blog post with a personalized postcard.  All opinions are my own.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Message In a Bottle

I love getting mail.  Let me rephrase that.  I love getting letters in the mail.  I hate getting bills in the mail.  Too often, we text, email, or post messages on our loved ones Facebook walls  We rarely take the time to sit down and hand write someone a note.  Isn’t it a nice feeling to open your mailbox and find a letter addressed to you?

The Monkey made some friends while we are on our recent cruise, and they agreed to become pen pals.  The idea is a great one – it not only allows the Monkey to practice her writing, but it allows her the opportunity to continue the friendships she created on our vacation.  She and the other girls became fast friends – they spent time at the pool and in the kids club together, and whined when it was time to leave.  In fact, they broke out into tears when they had to say goodbye.  It was heart breaking.

We decided to start the letter writing first, and the Monkey couldn’t just do a simple letter.  No, that would be easy.  She wanted to send them a letter in a bottle.  I guess it reminded her of our time on the beach in the Bahamas. 

I have sent various items in the mail in the past, such as boxes of movie candy, flip flops, and school supplies (search for ideas on Pinterest!), so I was used to sending out unusual mail. 
  • Slice a two litter bottle in half (make sure it’s empty!).  I used a pair of scissors, and cut along the middle.  I’m sure you could use a sharp knife and get the same results.  Be sure to cut evenly to avoid sharp edges.

  • Use soap and hot water to clean the bottle, and allow it to dry completely.
  • Fill up the bottle with whatever you want to send.  The Monkey included Disney themed stickers (to remind them of the cruise), a letter, a drawing, and two Disney hair clips that I made.

  • Place the upper half on the bottle on the lower half, and tape it back together using packing tape (it’s clear!).
  • Place your address label over the seam to cover it up.  We taped the label with more packing tape.
  • Be sure to put your cap back on the bottle (we taped that as well).

That’s it!  The only thing left to do is to go to the post office and expect a bunch of crazy looks from the staff there.  I think that's worth it, because I imagine that the girls will love getting this in the mail.

The next time you need to say thank you to someone, don't send them a text.  Take five minutes, and grab a piece of paper, and write them your thanks.  It will be much appreciated.

Until next time.....

Monday, July 1, 2013

I Scream, You Scream

There are a ton of gift basket companies out there, and I have to be honest with you.  If you spend a dime with them, you are NUTS!  Putting a basket together is not a difficult task, and with the popularity of Pinterest, the choice of themes is endless.

A co-worker mentioned the other day that she wanted to send a special thank you to someone that helped her out.  I jumped at the chance to lend a hand, because I enjoy putting these type of packages together.

I love ice cream any time of the year, but there is nothing like enjoying a ice cream cone in the summer.  I love when the ice cream truck comes down our street.  I think I run out the door faster than the Monkey does.  With that in mind, I put together this Ice Cream Party Basket – it includes sundae dishes, milk shake glasses, various ice cream toppings, festive napkins, an ice cream scooper, and straws.

Not including the time I spent buying the material (which I did during my weekly grocery shopping), and the time I spent putting it together (max of 10 minutes), I spent $42 on this basket.  Something homemade add a little bit more to the gift, don't you think?  Don't be afraid to something like this on your own.  The types of baskets you can do is endless: B-B-Q, crafts, baking, you name it!

You can find all these toppings at your local grocery store

The cups were $1.99 and the glasses were $2.49.  Way cheap, right?!

Fits like a glove

The finished product
Until next time....