Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Getting Ready To Bust Some Stash

You may have noticed a buttton on my sidebar that identifies my blog as participating in "Stashbusting September". This is the brainchild of Robin over at her blog The T-Shirt Diaries. Robin hosts a regular link party called Upcycled Awesome which, as the name implies, is focused on projects that are re-purposed, re-invented, upcycled, etc.

A logical extension of re-using stuff is using the stuff we already have and the worst kept secret among those of us creative types is we tend to have tons of ahem, "stuff". And I don't know about you, but as much "stuff" as I have, I can always buy more. So I was hesitant at first to sign up for Stashbusting September, wondering whether I could resist the lure of the JoAnn's and Michaels 40 and sometimes even 50% coupons, or the pull of the Dollar Tree and Goodwill and I decided I definitely should, and I could. We'll see about that! No new craft supplies or thrift store pickups in September! EEEEK!

There's still time to sign up to be a "Stashbusting" blog...You can check out all of the details and see the other 34 bloggers who are participating  here.

And Robin knows we are mere mortals so she's made provisions for an "oops". Not that I'm planning on needing this button or anything.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Don't Know Whether To Use It Or Eat It

I don't think it's a blogging no-no to blog about things you learn about in newsletters you subscribe to so if it is, well I didn't know (but there's a share button so I think it's OK) . Anyway, I subscribe to the FaveCrafts newsletter and guess what they had featured in the one I got today? This, that's what!
And it's edible! Wouldn't this make a fun gift ( if it gets out of your kitchen)? I knew I saved those pasta sauce jars ( hangs head in shame for using pre-made sauce SOMETIMES) for a reason!

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup cocoa nibs
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened
  • cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup jojoba oil
  • 1/2 cup sweet almond oil
  • 2 tablespoons vitamin E oil
  1. Use a food processor or blender to grind the oats into a powder.
  2. Add the cocoa nibs, cocoa powder, salt, almond oil, jojoba oil, and vitamin E oil.
  3. Hit pulse a few times to blend.
  4. Store in a glass or plastic jar, and scoop out for use with a spoon or a seashell.
  5. Massage the scrub into skin, then rinse with warm water.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Champagne and Chocolate

 The DIY Show Off

And I'm not even talking about the consumable kinds. Fall is in the air and I decided that a wreath I'd made for Spring / Summer was out of season and I needed something more Autmn-y. I loved the brown hydrangea I used in the wreath I made for my mom so I ran back to Michaels to get one for me and also found the most beautiful champagne colored ribbon. So using one of these again from the $1 Tree: 
I wrapped it in the champagne ribbon, and added the chocolate brown hydrangea, and some "milk" chocolate and dark chocolate flowers, along with some floral picks I found in my stash. I wish these wreath forms were just a little bigger but as I reminded myself "they're a dollar".  Added a few spiral thingies I made from a never ending roll of paper bark covered wire, added a chocolate brown bow, and:

Linking Up At: 


 All Thingz Related

Thursday, August 26, 2010

When You Wish Upon A Tray...

Welcome to those visiting from :

New Friend Fridays

I keep finding trays. Doesn't it seem like when you find something to re-purpose, you keep finding more of that thing wherever you go? I found an old tray with a glass bottom at an antique store and initially, I thought I would reverse decoupage the glass part because it looked pretty bad. But once I got it cleaned up, it looked pretty good so another idea came to mind.
It had a beat up finish but was kind of "70's brown". Taped off the glass part, painted it black acrylic paint, dry brushed it with darker brown, didn't like it, glazed it with black and glazing medium and then finally went randomly over it w/ silver Rub N Buff  which really made the handles pop.

In one of my scavenging visits to JoAnn's, I'd picked up a package of "Hip In A Hurry" vinyl that was 70% off that I thought would be perfect for this project:
The best part is there are 4 sheets in the package and I only used one for this, so 3 more projects..yeah!
 You can guess from my play on words in the title which one I used? No? OK here:
When You WISH Upon A Tray
And despite my earlier statement that "more is more" and I really thought I was going to do more on this, I decided that simpler was better. That won't be a habit! To finish it off, I used two Prima paper flowers I'd picked up while on vacation.

Now, if I could only find a cheese dome!

Linking Up At:

  Beyond The Picket Fence giveaways

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

I'm In The Book...Are You?

These days, phone books are almost obsolete so the phrase..."I'm in the book" needs a new purpose. I'm all about re-purposing:) 

The book I'm talking about being in is this one:

The blog guidebook is an awesome resource and place to list your own blog...for FREE! You choose which category you want to be listed under and you can easily search all of the listed categories if you're looking for a specific type of blog. PLUS...they feature different blogs which is a great way to see and be seen, and they offer great hints and tips about blogging. If you haven't checked it out, buzz on over there. 

Monday, August 23, 2010

Choco-licious...Sharing A Share

So, having been at this blogging thing a little over three months, I'm still learning all of the rules of etiquette. Let it be understood that my heart's in the right place even if my brain isn't ( it's been known to happen!).

Anyhoo...one of my favorite things to do every day is to read my blog reader. I mean that's why we follow blogs right? I love to see what everyone's been up to. So I saw something fantabulously awesome featured on one of the blogs I follow Craft Envy (love that name!) a great blog by sisters in law Vanessa and Nicholette, and it led me to another new blog I just started following today The Sisters 4 Say More Is More , a cool blog run by you guessed it four sisters: Selina, Sophia, Olivia, and Elise. I just had to feature this project. Had to had to had to. Look:

CHOCOLATE Flower Necklace

YUM! Chocolate and jewelry and handmade? HELLO! Easy to see how this was one of Craft Envy's favorites. If you want to see the tutorial, click on over to The Sisters 4 Say More Is More

As usual, I can relate pretty much anything to a movie. "More is more" is something I say all the time. I got it from the movie "One True Thing" which I saw with one of my BFFs and we laughed in hearty agreement at the scene where Meryl Streep says this as she is trying to explain her life to her very un-crafty daughter played by Rene Zellwegger. She says "Less is not more. More is more" . Totally my philosophy when it comes to embellishments. And supplies. And chocolate.  If this movie was re-made today, Meryl Streep's character would SO be a blogger!

CSN Giveaway Winner

Thank you to everyone who linked up or left comments at my Holiday Open House! There were some great ideas and delicious recipes so if you missed it, you can still check those out.  Per the rules, you needed to leave a comment to be eligible for the giveaway so I have used random.org to pick the winner from the comments. And the winner of the $50 CSN gift certificate is....

Terrell from :

Congrats Terrell!!! I have given CSN your contact info.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Holiday Open House #2

Welcome one and all to the second ever link party at The Answer Is Chocolate! So glad you could come.  Grab a cup of your favorite holiday drink and let's see what great holiday ideas everyone's got!

I'm thrilled that CSN Stores has enabled me to be a good hostess and offer one lucky party guest a chance to win a $50 gift certificate to one of their stores!!! In your trips around blog land no doubt you've seen  that they offer everything from dining room sets to housewares, bedding, shoes, handbags, you name it, they sell it. To be eligible  (US and Canada only) you must be a follower of The Answer Is Chocolate and leave a comment on this post. Even if you link up something, PLEASE leave a comment so I can use random.org to fairly select a winner. That's it!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Reminder...Linky Party Friday!!! Now With Giveaway

Come one, come all!

Link up anything that's related to holidays from Halloween to New Year's...could be decor, cards, decorations, ornaments, wall art etc.!

Could be inspiration and ideas of things to make and/or give as gifts! Jewelry projects, re-fashioned fashion,headbands,etc.
Could be party ideas for these occasions!

Could be recipes that would be great for holidays!  Especially Chocolate...I have a reputation!

And I'm really excited ( really really really excited) to announce my first ever sponsored giveaway! CSN Stores is giving me the chance to offer a $50 gift certificate to one of their over 200 stores where you can get everything from dining sets to home decor, housewares, things for your home office, handbags, shoes! Is there anything you can't get from them?

Come by on Friday to find out how you can win this awesome giveaway! See you then.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I Bling Therefore I Am

I've mentioned before that I love jewelry...big, chunky, funky jewelry. I love my "good" pieces but I also love playing with other stuff. I've also mentioned that I can't have my ears pierced ( physically can't...no other reason...just doesn't work) so it's a challenge to find clips I like because someone decided clips are dainty. So what's a girl to do? Why reinvent something of course!

While on vacation, I found the COOLEST store that I did not need to go into but you know I did. It's an accessory store that is all organized by color and they have got pretty much every color and every accessory you can imagine. It's called "Charming Charlie" . If you have access to one, LUCKEEEE! If you don't, well misery loves company so come sit by me.

They had some clips but I'm one of those "I want what I want" kinda people so I bought a pair of pierced earrings that gave me a vision. No, I had not been drinking. They were perfect becase the Mumster had given me a bunch o earrings that she inherited from her dear sweet cousin who passed away earlier this year. Mom's not blingy like me but our cousin was! Still, they weren't totally my style so like any mad crafter, I combined them! Wanna see?
Left: Charming Charlie....Right Cousin's Earrings
I took everything apart:
Dis-assembled, and the big ones flipped upside down
Clip Earring Backs To The Rescue! Glued on w/ Beadalon's Bead Fix

And then put them back together (with blingy parts leftover for future use yeah! )

I love that these earrings will always hold both the memory of a visit with my Mom, and a keepsake from one of our most entertaining cousins.

Linking up at:


Sunday, August 15, 2010

Feeling Wreathy

I felt like I lost my creative mojo this week ( I think it's withdrawal from Yogurtland...a place we went regularly while on vacation and which we don't have here..oh Chocolate Coconut Truffle, how I miss you, but I digress). While visiting the Mumster ( aka my cute little Mommy) I made the mistake of remarking that she had two wreaths that had seen better days and little miss feisty said " Well what are you going to do about it since you said you were going to make me new ones..ahem ahem".  Note to self: KEEP QUIET!

And yes, Mom reads my blog so someone's going to ask me "Why are you putting these on here if she hasn't received them yet" which is a fair point, but if I'd had time to make them while we were still there, then she would have seen them as they were being made so....

I started with these from $1 Tree:

Plus burgundy ribbon, one silk flower bush , and three silk focal stems from Michaels. Silk flowers have to at least look natural to me and I thought these colors would work well for my Mom's house.  For the green styro wreath, I wrapped it with the ribbon and then beheaded the flowers and stripped off the leaves ( it didn't hurt...I promise...OK except where my wire cutters pinched me!) and then just hot glued stuff on in a way that I liked. Same principle for the vine wreath except I didn't wrap it in ribbon first. A while ago I bought a roll of some kind of bark covered wire which I cut lengths of, wrapped around a pen and made curly viney thingies that I stuck in at random.

I love this brown hydrangea:

I used to feel like you had to cover the whole wreath with stuff, but lately I'm more inclined to do just part. So Mom, I hope you like! Now I just have to figure out how the heck they're getting mailed to you :)

Linking up at:
  UndertheTableandDreaming The Girl Creative All Thingz Related

Friday, August 13, 2010

Ssshhhh....It's Not Chocolate!

I can usually forego dessert if it's not chocolate. But, nature has provided us with a bountiful supply of blackberries. Despite Mr. Chocolate's persistent cutting back of these ( much to my chagrin), each year we end up with "a bunch o berries". They don't ripen until later in the summer here so I was excited last night when I was able to pick these:
About 5 cups. Not enough to make any jam but certainly enough for a homemade cobbler! Actually I only used 3 cups for the cobbler and the rest are in the freezer, added to some from last year and awaiting future pickings from this year.

Super easy recipe:
Heat Oven to 350
Melt 1 stick butter ( yes, 1 stick....and I say Paula Deen's trying to kill me with butter) and pour on the bottom of a 12x12 pan ( or whatever you have that's close)
1C Flour
1C Sugar
1 Tbsp Baking Powder
Pinch of Salt
2/3 C Milk

Pour on top of melted butter. Top w/ 3 C blackberries. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake 40-45 min until brown.

We had ours warm with Vanilla bean ice cream. Mmmmmm....Summer!

Welcome to those stopping in from:

New Friend Fridays