Categories
Decorate Eat Inspire

4th Of July Marshmallow Pops

Red, white & blue marshmallow pops make for a fun and festive 4th of July treat! These darling three ingredient, no-bake, sweet treats are a crowd pleaser for sure!

The 4th of July is less than a week away, can you believe it? This is my very favorite time of year. We have all adjusted to the more laid back summer state of mind as July approaches. The days are long and hot and full of plenty of friends, imagination and wondrous adventures which just seem to unfold in the summertime months. My eldest daughter came home from one of these adventures with a bag full of goodies that included the biggest marshmallows I had ever seen. Lickity-split, my mind began whirling with ideas of what I could create with these puffs of fluff the size of my palm. I’ve had cake pops on the brain after making cake pop cards not to mention I’ve been lamenting about how to use the pretty red & white paper straws I picked up recently.

insert sound of fireworks exploding*

And hence, the 4th of July Marshmallow Pops where born.

My girls and their friends OOOoooooh’ed and AAAAaaah’ed as I whipped up a batch the other day, so I knew they’d be my go-to fun treat for all of our 4th of July festivities. Thought I’d share what I did so you could too!

You’ll just need some red & blue candy melts.

Some red & white paper straws. (You could try the plastic ones but I thought that the paper ones seemed more sturdy).

And but of course GINORMOUS marshmallows!

These marshmallows make the straw-to-marshmallow ratio more proportionate than the regular marshmallows. And you know how important straw-to-marshmallow ratio is.

First melt the candy melts according to package instructions.

I experimented with a few different techniques of dipping sequences and I found that pushing the straw (about 3/4 deep) into the marshmallow before dipping it into candy coating was the way to go.

So, first push the straw into the marshmallow and then take the straw out. Next, dip the marshmallow into blue melted coating(and 1/3 of the way) and then tap, tap, tap your hand that is holding the marshmallow to get all of the extra candy coating off. (Learned that trick from Bakerella! Thanks Bakerella!)

Then place the marshmallow on wax paper, dipped side up…

BUT before the coating is dry, insert the straws back into their original hole and let them sit until candy coating is totally dry.

This way there will be no candy-coating-cracking going on, not to mention this helps the straw stay secure.

Once the blue coating has dried all the way,

…it’s time to dip them into the red melted candy coating. I found that holding the marshmallow from the marshmallow rather than the straw worked the best. Then stand the marshmallow pops in a sturdy glass until dry.

I never knew that patriotic could look so cute.

Make sure to taste one just to make sure that they are edible for all of your friends and family.

I know, I know. The sacrifices that we have to make.

This is the perfect fun & festive sweet treat. Three ingredients. No mess. No hot oven to contend with in the blazing summer heat.

I’m in.

Happy Red, White & Blue!

~Wenderly

4th of July Marshmallow Pops
Serves: 20
A perfect fun & festive sweet treat on a stick!
Ingredients
  • 1 bag of red candy melts
  • 1 bag of blue candy melts
  • 20 large marshmallows
  • 20 red & white striped paper straws
Instructions
  1. Melt red & blue candy melts in separate bowls according to package instructions.
  2. Insert a straw 3/4 deep into each marshmallow and take out again. This will leave the hole where the straw will go after dipping marshmallows.
  3. Dip the side of the marshmallow with the hole into the melted blue candy coating. Hold marshmallow over bowl after dipping and tap your hand until excess candy coating has been tapped off of the marshmallow.
  4. Place marshmallow with the dipped side up and insert straw into each hole. Let dry completely.
  5. Once the blue coating is completely dry, hold the marshmallow by the sides (not the straw) and dip into the red melted candy coating. Tap hand to shake off excess candy coating.
  6. Place the marshmallow pop (straw side down) into a heavy glass to dry.

Categories
Decorate

No Bake Cake Pop Cards

Have you ever heard of Bakerella? Well if you haven’t, let me introduce you. This is her gorgeous blog – click here. Go ahead. I’ll wait for you.

Isn’t she amazing?

I mean seriously. She has more talent in her little finger than most people have in their whole body. I have admired Angie from afar for the past few years. I started following her blog about the same time  I started mine and I’m always inspired when I stop over to see what sweet treat she’s up to next.

I actually got to meet and hang out with Angie, aka Bakerella, back in December.

I shared a room with her and some other fantabulous ladies when I went to Austin for Girl Hunter weekend. And guess what? She’s a sweet as the confections she creates. She has a sparkle that just twinkles and touches all who are near her. No wonder her cake pops are so dang cute!

So that’s the background story. Now on to the cake pop cards. After buying and pouring over Angie’s lovely Cake Pops book, for days I was inspired to dig in. But instead of baking some of her adorable edible art cake pops, I made cards.

I’m weird like that -what can I say?

However, I did begin with a few of the same ingredients that one would use to make cake pops…

Like some sprinkles for instance.

And lollipop sticks.

But the other ingredients I used such as cotton balls, colored papers, fabric, hot glue, glitter glue and circular paper punches, not so much. Those would be the ingredients for my inedible cake pop cards.

It was really fun flipping through her book as my imagination swirled with ideas of how to replicate such darling creations.

I fell in love with this little chickie.

I decided to used a favorite antique chenille fabric as the body and I found that hot gluing some cotton to the back of the fabric circle gave the chickie a 3D cake pop effect. Add the lollipop stick and voila…

I used an orange up-side-down pumpkin sprinkle as the beak and added a few feathers for wings. I thought he turned out rather cute, if I say so myself.

I decided to make just one more card with another one of my favorite cake pops creations.

The clowns. I mean stop it.

Aren’t they precious?

Here’s mine…

I used a red hot for the nose and sand paper with glitter glue with a tiny pomp ball for the ice cream cone hat.

And then I just couldn’t, well… S-T-O-P.

As I kept flipping the pages I kept making cake pop cards. It was like I was possessed. A possessed-cake-pop-card-maker I was.

But in my defense, look at those panda bears!!

I used velvet paper and a pink heart sprinkle for the nose.

And then just you wait until you see the puppy dogs…

Eeeeeeeeeek! Cute alert. Cute alert!!!

I used more velvet paper and a red silk ribbon in place of the lifesaver collar.

And then I saw the pirates. Be. still. my. heart.

AHOY, me hearties.

Yep you guessed it. More velvet paper and cotton ball backing and I used white nonpareils as the polka dots.

Just when I thought I had satiated my cake pop making appetite, I turned the page to see…

The owls.

I mean whooooooooooo, wouldn’t melt when looking at these precious creatures?

Brown velvet paper for the body and an orange 3D paper beak made the owl complete.

And speaking of melting…

I melted into a puddle when I saw this cute little guy. Who cares that it’s almost the 4th of July? These fellows are just TOO adorable to go unnoticed!

Again I used white & black velvet paper. The velvet paper really seemed to work well with the cake pop cards. The soft surface made them come to life on paper. I used a red sprinkle for the nose and blue glitter glue as the buttons. I did try to stay authentic to the edible cake pop but when I used the blue flat sprinkles as the buttons but they cracked so the glitter glue won out. Better to be practical when making handmade greeting cards. I’ve learned that the hard way.

The farm animals made me giggle with glee. I couldn’t pass up the chicken. And sorry, I forgot to take a picture of the page (but that’s o.k. you can see them when you have your own book to pour over, right?).

The three red heart candies emulated Angie’s chicken to a “t” and the 3D orange paper beak worked perfectly in place of the miniature orange sprinkles. I knew that a sprinkle beak on a card wouldn’t last.

And finally a few of my own cake pop creations.

 

I used cupcake papers along with some sprinkles and red ribbon roses, velvet paper and chenille. I cannot tell you what a joy it was spending the afternoon with my cards, papers, baubles & glue gun indulging in such a happy delightful book. Can’t wait to get my fingers sticky next time with some cake batter and candy coating.

Happy baking, making & creating!

Love,
Wenderly

 

 

Categories
Inspire Musings

Antique Therapy

Have you ever heard the expression, “when the times get tough, the tough get antiquing”? You haven’t? Well…actually…neither have I until it just popped into my head. You see I love to go antiquing. I especially love to go antiquing when I need to unwind. It’s like therapy. Have you ever tried it?

Well if you haven’t you should. And if you have then you totally get what I’m talking about, right?

Antiquing is a playground for the imagination. An escape from the world as you slowly find yourself sauntering down memory lane.

Take these dishes for example…

I grew up eating chicken divan, lasagna, chicken curry and taco dip on these very same dishes. Well not the very same dishes, but dishes just like these. Merely seeing them transports me back to a place where dinner was waiting on the kitchen table as I ran in from whatever carefree-kid-adventure I happened to be enthralled with. It’s amazing how seeing them again can, in an instant, melt away whatever dilemma that happens to be occupying my mind.

Strolling down aisle after aisle my mind continues to swirl with ideas, images and emotion.

These dreamy green glasses would make the perfect vessel for some velvety chocolate pudding…

Or perhaps a refreshingly cold margarita on a hot summer day.

It’s so delightful to dig through these cookbooks and trinkets to find treasures that I never even knew I needed.

Antique glass milk bottles make charming vases or fun glasses to sip pink lemonade through a red striped straw.

Are you having fun yet? Me too.

Oh and then lookie at these little darlings! Perfect for my first cup of coffee or how about some tomato soup?

I think I must indulge in this dear straw hat, dontcha think?

And who doesn’t need and antique laundry detergent container?

Rolled bath towels in there would be precious! Or how about magazines? Or a toy bin? Or a shoe catch-all?

Or.

O.k. I’ll stop now. I just can’t help myself. Once my brain starts whirling there’s just no stopping it.

Now what was I worried about again?

Happy antique therapy!

~Wenderly

Categories
Garden Inspire

Forcing Forsythia in My Foyer

Did you know that you can force forsythia inside your home and enjoy glorious blooms indoors while it’s still cold outdoors!

Although it’s been a very mid winter this year, nothing thrills my soul more than the first sweet whispers of Spring. The warm breezy days that entice the few flowers that are brave enough to push their way through the stark thawing ground. The barren trees that stand naked one day and then magically begin the next dressed in buds that will become intoxicating flowers after a few more weeks of delicious sunshine…

I want it all and I want it now.

So you know what I do this time of year when I’m itching for Spring?

I force forsythia in my foyer.

You should try it. It’s brilliantly simple and splendidly soul satisfying.

First you’ll need to find a forsythia bush. Make sure that you can actually see some buds that have already formed on the branches. Forsythia is some of the first budding-blooming-bushes of Spring, exactly when will vary depending on where you live.

Then, pull on some rubber boots and tromp through the soggy ground with some cutting shears and cut  a few branches that you find to be breathtakingly beautiful.

Before you place the beautiful branches into a sturdy vase (that won’t topple over once it’s full of branches), you’ll need to gently tap, tap, tap the woody ends with a hammer.

This will allow the branches to more easily drink up the water. Remember to use warm water. This will also make it easier for the forsythia to drink.

*Note, no forsythia branches were harmed during this photo shoot.*

Next you’ll want to find a warm sunny spot for your forsythia to bask in the golden sunshine. This will encourage the branches to believe that it is indeed time to bloom.

My warm sunny spot happens to be my foyer.

And as you can tell, this charming chap is thrilled to pieces to share his favorite spot with a vase full of forsythia.

This is Oliver. And Oliver loves nothing more than the warm golden sunshine that spills into the foyer as he lounges upon the buffet table.

Sharing it with the forsythia. Not so much.

 

“Maybe if I ignore the forsythia it will go away.”

Or maybe Oliver will just go away.

Anyway. Back to my forcing of forsythia.

After about a week or so, you’ll begin to see some sweet green peeking out from within the buds.

Then, before you know it, all of the branches will soon be covered in the gorgeous green.

A day or so later, some lovely yellow will appear.

And then the unfurling of the first forsythia flower…

And before you know it…

You’ll have a foyer full.

And that my friends is how you can get a fabulous fan of forsythia in your foyer with or without a finicky feline who is far from farklempt over the fact that he has to share his favorite spot.

Happy almost Spring!

~Wenderly

Categories
Home Projects Make

New Seats, No Sweat

Winter makes me sleepy <insert yawn here>, not to mention stir crazy . I find myself yearning for change. I have been known to sand, paint and rearrange any and all furniture that I can get my hands on.  I paint as many rooms as I can with any and all paint that I can find. As you can imagine my home becomes quite a parade of projects. My poor family suffers through them until my creative tornado winds down and in a moment of exhaustion I flop onto the couch and curl up with my stacks and stacks of unread magazines-which eventually refuels my imagination and my maniacal cycle begins yet again.

This is my life.

This is why I can’t live without my handy dandy glue gun

or staple gun

or paintbrush

or cabinets of fabric (*ahem* even though I can’t sew).

This is why I have 152 craft cabinets.

This is why I live on Starbucks.

O.k., enough about me.

You see my darling sister Marcey lives in the most adorable house nestled in one of the most charming suburbs in town. Her home is warm, equipped with a delightful front porch, hardwood floors and tidy rooms full of antique furniture including the chair I gave her when I moved to Atlanta (but that’s story for another day). Marcey has the loveliest dining room table that has the most precious chairs tucked around the edges that patiently wait for me and my family to invade her delightful home for various family/holiday/birthday gatherings.

For years my sister has been talking about covering her dining room chairs each time we gather around her lovely table. So for Christmas, I took it upon myself to buy her some fabric that I wrapped along with a note promising to help her cover her seat cushions. A few weeks ago I ventured over with my staple gun on my hip and a Starbucks in my hand. Wait ’til you see how easy it is to give your chairs (and room) a new look! No parade of paint brushes or messy makeovers here.

Just some fabric, scissors and a staple gun.

And of course a chair with a removable seat cushion.

First you’ll want to iron the fabric to remove any creases.

As you can see I ironed the fabric after I took the photo. *cough, cough*

Next, place your fabric on a flat surface and cut the (ironed) fabric into squares that are a couple of inches wider than your seat cover.

You’ll want to begin by stapling along the edge first,

then staple the corner

and neatly fold the remaining fabric from the other side over (like you would when wrapping a present).

And then staple that into place.

I am no professional seat coverer by any stretch of the imagination, however I have found that less is more when covering seat cushions.

If you have too much fabric or too many staples the seat cushions will not fit back into the base of the chair. If you do use too much fabric or too many staples you will just have to keep trimming the fabric off, take all the staples out and do it all over again until the seat cushion will nestle back into place.

I may or may have not done just that a few hundred times.

Continue stapling and folding until the entire edge is stapled and all of the corners are nice and neat (and flat).

Then place the cushion pack into the chair.

And sit on it a few times just because you can.

And voila!

You’ve got yourself a new chair and not a bead of sweat to be found!

Not to mention a whole new room with a whole new look and feel.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m having new-seat-cover-envy. Time to grab another Starbucks and get busy stapling and folding to at my house.

~Wenderly

Categories
Decorate Inspire Parties

Setting a Black & White Scene for Halloween

I decided to do something different for Halloween. I made it a black & white affair.

But don’t worry.  No ball gowns or black ties necessary unless of couse it’s part of your costume.

This year I’ve decided to go black and white for an upscale look without all the fuss.

I’ve got a few simple tricks up my sleeve for a beautiful table in no time flat.

My inspiration came from the plethora of pumpkins that I’ve collected throughout the house during the fall season.

I have a pumpkin problem, what can I say? I adore pumpkins.

My table uses white pumpkins with polka dot holes drilled through them as the centerpiece. Years ago I saw Martha Stewart talk about using a drill to carve holes in pumpkins and I have found it to be my very favorite way to “carve” the magical orbs that I seem to collect every year. What I really love about this centerpiece is that they end up giving off a most lovely glow of orange, a subtle accent of the traditional color of the holiday.

Look how easy it is to make this beautiful centerpiece.

Begin with a white pumpkin or pumpkins.

I cut the hole in the bottom of my pumpkin to keep the sweet integrity and character of the pumpkin.

Scoop out the seeds and toast them if you like. My dear friend Amy of She Wears Many Hats has a wonderful recipe for toasting pumpkin seeds click here to get it.

Once you’ve cleaned out all of the seeds, you’ll need an electric drill and a one inch drill bit.

Now it’s time for the fun part. Mwahahahhahahahaha.

Simply drill as many holes as you like all over the surface of your pumpkin. (But don’t drill too many or you’ll be able to see the candle inside.)

It’s easy and slightly messy, the slower you drill the less pumpkin you’ll have flying all over your kitchen.

Or if you were in a mad dash like me, you’ll have pumpkin flying all over your kitchen, in your hair, on your shirt, up your nose…

Next grab a glass votive and a candle,

put it on a small plate (to protect your tablecloth) light the candle and place the pumpkin over the top. Nothing tricky there, right?

Aren’t they just precious?

Next I wanted the table to have a subtle Halloween feel. I found this fabulous black web tablecloth that I found at my grocery store but you could even use a black tulle to give a similar effect.

I placed it over a soft grey tablecloth to accent the webs.

Next I set the table with some festive black & white dishes.

I used chipboard letters painted in black glitter paint as the place cards.

I found some black & white glasses to add into the mix for some blood red kiddie cocktails with black plastic spider ice cubes. Or an adult version.

A black boa wreath with a crow perched in the middle makes for a spooky decoration that can hang on a door in a window

I just hot glued the black boa to a styrofoam wreath and wired the crow in the center.

 

Doesn’t get an easier than that does it?

In no time at all, my dining room has been transformed into a festive, sophisticated, black & white Halloween treat.

 

Elegant meets easy.

Dinner anyone?

Wishing you a spooky but splendid Halloween!

~Wenderly

 

Categories
Decorate Desserts Inspire Parties

Scary Stories & Cute Cupcakes

You know what’s scary?

Halloween is less than a week away which means that Thanksgiving is four weeks way which means that Christmas is eight weeks away.

I can’t breathe.

You know what else is scary?

My eldest daughter will turn 14 the day after Halloween which means that she will turn 16 in two years which means she’ll be leaving for college two years after that.

STOP the madness. 

Do you see how my mind works?

Scary.

My morning was scary too. I had my cup of coffee, made breakfast, packed lunches, fed the animals, made sure that everyone had their vitamins and got ready to workout. Seems rather normal right? Well then as I waited for My Yanni to finish up a business call before heading to the gym, my mind started whirling through my to do list. Before I knew it I had grabbed the white pumpkins to be used as a centerpiece for an upcoming post and had just started to carve them when I thought, “I should have different clothes on”.

This is where things began to unravel.

I had dashed to the closet to grab a sweatshirt. Somehow that turned into trying on clothes and more clothes then shoes and boots and then I noticed a dust bunny & cob webs on my hardwood floors which made me think of Halloween and…the pumpkins waiting in the kitchen.

Wait.

Halloween is less than a week away.

Tomorrow is Sweet Cheeks Halloween party at school. Her very last Halloween party of elementary school which means it’s MY last Halloween party of elementary school.

*sob*

So I made cupcakes. Just because.

Makes perfect sense doesn’t it?

Stress+ multi-tasking-like-a-deer-on-roller-skates = easy-cute-cupcakes.

Makes perfect sense to me.

To save time I used a boxed cake mix and pre-made icing and decided to embellish the little cuties with some fun ribbon flags.

I happened to have some ribbon with “Happy Halloween” written on it, but you can use any kind of Halloween ribbon that you’ve got.

Just cut the ribbon into 2 inch length pieces, dab some hot glue to the back edge and wrap them around the tip of a toothpick.

Make some cupcakes and frost them…

And stick the flags in.

So festive and darling.

Now you’ll even have time to dust up all of those cobwebs hanging around your house.

Or if you’re like me, decide that they make the perfect Halloween decoration.

Speaking of Halloween decorations, I didn’t even get to tell you how I haven’t had the time to put up all of my beloved Halloween decorations. Or how I accidentally took my dog’s allergy pill last week.

*woof*

Now THAT’S scary.

Which reminds me.

Oh never-mind.

~Wenderly