Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Duct Tape Bag!!

Hi!!! Look who's back!!!! I know I haven't blogged in like months, but between work and school and work I just didn't have any motivation to do much crafting at all. I didn't even experiment with new cupcake recipes. :*(  But I was at Target a couple of weeks ago and was browsing through their Back to School section and came across the cutest duct tape! It has monsters on it! So of course I bought it. And it was sitting in my room until this past Friday night when I realized that I needed to learn how to make a duct tape bow for Saturday and fast (since we had the Hello Kitty day make & takes at Ben Franklin)!! So I hunted for duct tape and just grabbed my roll of monsters since I didn't want to use the fast food duct tape I also bought.
ANYWAY, yesterday I decided to take the roll of tape to work with me, hoping that I'd be able to work on a bag that I had been hoping to make. I did get a bag done...it took me all morning but I did get it done. I also got a bag done made of pink, red, and Hello Kitty duct tape that you can see if you visit the store. (It's by the TV display with all the duct tape by Make a Memory.) I ended up not liking the first bag very much, so today I worked on a second one once I got all the work stuff done. So...here it is!!:


The inside is red duct tape and the outside is monster. It's not a very big bag. I wasn't even able to put both rolls of tape into it. But I think it'd be cute for a small gift bag or something. All in all it took me about 2 hours total to finish it. I had to stop and go while I was working on it at work and when I got home I finished it. It only took a while because I kept taping my fingers and making air bubbles.

I think I may have to buy more duct tape and make a few more of these. I'm going to try some other bags too. Just probably not at work because I think I've played with the duct tape enough there. :)

See you later!!!

~Jeni

Monday, March 5, 2012

Please Donate to Relay For Life!

Okay, so this post has nothing to do with crafting, but something more personal.

The University of Hawaii at Hilo hosts their own Relay for Life each spring and I've participated in it for the past three years (well, with the exception of last year...it was the three years before that.)

If you don't know what Relay for Life is, it's a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. The event is held all over the country on different dates. It's an overnight event with teams of people walking around a track or a specific route. For more information on Relay for Life, you can visit this site.

This year we got a little late of a start because our team didn't know if we were going to actually have a team.

I've participated because cancer has affected my family as well as hundreds of families all over the country and the world. My dad is a cancer survivor, having been diagnosed with kidney cancer in 2008. Thank goodness it was only in the early stages when the doctors caught it and he has been in remission since. But I always think of what could have happened. We didn't need the services that the American Cancer Society offers, but there are many families and individuals who do.

Please donate if you can. Relay for Life is this coming weekend but the ACS can use donations any time of the year. My personal donation page is here if you'd like to help my team reach its goal.

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Oreo Cupcakes!

Am I sure I didn't post this already? I guess not. I wonder if I closed the screen instead of scheduling this to post last night. LoL. Completely possible with me. XD


Anyway, we had a meeting at work this past Sunday and I always like to make something for the meetings.  (I like to, but it doesn't mean I always do. Usually it depends on what time I finish work on Saturday...) I hadn't made cupcakes in a while so I asked a co-worker what kind of cupcakes I should make. She said chocolate but I'm not completely happy with the chocolate recipe I have (and the really good one I used to make I can't find the recipe for....) so I needed to think of something to add to it. I've already done chocolate cherry so I wanted to do something different. Then I remembered seeing a recipe for Oreo cupcakes online a couple of months ago. I decided to go searching for it and see if it was easy enough to make for the meeting. Unfortunately, that recipe had way too may steps and I didn't want to spend that much time baking so I went Googling for another recipe. Anyway, long story short, I found one that I thought sounded interesting, although I was a little skeptical because I've never made a chocolate cupcake without butter before. 


The resulting cupcake:

It turned out a lot better than I had originally expected. Especially since I used the generic Oreo-like cookies from Safeway because the real Oreos were like $5 a bag. (The generic ones were $2.50 or something like that.) A co-worker gave me some mint Oreos so I used those too. 

Here's the recipe (as I usually do, copied and pasted from the site I got it on, with my notes added (with the **)...):

Oreo Cupcakes

2 cups sugar
2 cups flour (**I used one cup cake flour and one cup AP flour. I wanted to use my cake flour.)
3/4 cups cocoa (**Cocoa Powder...unsweetened)
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder (**Rounded)
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 package instant chocolate pudding
3 eggs
1 cup sour cream (**=one small container)
1/2 cup oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water 
24 Oreo cookies, with one side twisted off and reserved (**Approximately...I actually think I used more. More like 36)

*Preheat oven to 350. Line cupcake pans.
*In a large bowl whisk together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, salt and pudding mix. Add oil, eggs, sour cream and vanilla. Beat on medium speed until well blended (about 2 minutes) Continue beating while slowly adding in the boiling water. Beat about 30 seconds after adding the water.

Put the Oreo with one side twisted off cream side up and fill cupcake liners about 1/2 way. (**I did some this way but I found out afterwards that the cookie did not stick to the cake when you took the wrapper off. I ended up filling the liner a little, putting the cookie in, and then adding more batter. Worked a lot better that way.) Bake 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out mostly clean. (In my oven it took more like half an hour. LoL) Let them cool completely on cooling rack.

The frosting was just a canned vanilla frosting mixed with a container of marshmallow fluff. Only because I only bought one container of frosting and I'm a girl who likes a lot of frosting. XD So I added the marshmallow fluff to make it stretch more. I frosted the cupcakes and then put the top cookie from the Oreo on the very top. Like a little hat. ^.^

I'm thinking of making these cupcakes again this weekend. I have everything except the pudding and the sour cream. And the frosting. Market tomorrow! Or maybe Friday since I work all day tomorrow. 

Okie dokie. I think this post is long enough. LoL. I'll see you later!!

~Jen

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Yummy Goodies!

Just before New Years we pounded mochi at my house, like we do every year. Since it was a smaller crowd this year and we normally pot luck, we didn't know how much food was actually going to show up so I told my mom that I'd make some snack kind of things just in case.


I actually only had time to make two things, but they were really yummy! One of my go-to recipes this fall/winter has been pumpkin spice cupcakes. (And I had to use Halloween cupcake liners that were a little bent out of shape, which is why it looks all warped. LoL) It's a super easy recipe that I found in a magazine and went a little crazy on. 

Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes

1 box yellow cake mix
1 box vanilla instant pudding
1 can pumpkin puree (it said 1 cup in the recipe but I put 1 can. It tastes better that way)
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup water
3 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

*Preheat oven to 350 degrees
*Mix all ingredients in a bowl
*Line cupcake trays
*Fill 3/4 full
*Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean
*Cool and frost. 

I used a regular canned cream cheese frosting that I added a little bit of vanilla, cinnamon, and clove to. Just eyeball it. I think the recipe makes about 28 - 30 cupcakes, possibly more. 


The other thing I made was Muddy Buddies. So super duper easy and took all of 10 minutes. I'm sure everyone knows how to make these but here you go anyway:

Muddy Buddies

1 box Chex or Chex-like cereal (I used these Rice Pockets or something like that from Safeway once and it worked fine.)
1/2 a bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 a bottle of peanut butter
1 cup (or so) powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 a stick of butter

*Melt chocolate chips, butter, and peanut butter in a microwave-safe bowl on high for 30 seconds. 
*Take it out and stir. If it's not completely smooth, put back in microwave for another 30 seconds. 
*Once the mixture is smooth and all melted, empty the box of cereal into a big bowl
*Stir vanilla into mixture and pour over cereal
*Completely coat cereal with mixture
*Dump cereal into either 2 1-gallon size Ziplock bags or 1 2-gallon size bag. 
*Pour in powdered sugar, close bag, and shake like crazy until all the cereal is coated. If you need more powdered sugar, add more. 
*Dump cereal out onto waxed paper to cool

And that's pretty much it. I poured mine into a bowl and mixed in some mint M&Ms because I just had some lying around. 

Okie dokie. That's all for today. Bye!!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Blogging Backlog!

Okay, okay, so apparently I've only been blogging every couple of months. Sorry! It's not that I haven't wanted to, it's just that I need to learn time management a little better. So I have a ton of stuff I need to blog about. I keep taking pictures and go "I need to blog about this" but never get around to it. I'm going to try to do better this year.

The first thing on my camera was some pictures I took when I was working on cards for my mom's Christmas baskets that she gave family friends.


I procrastinated way too much so I needed to get these done in a hurry. It was a good thing I had a bunch of stamped and colored images from when I was doing cards for the church on hand and so I just kind of only had to piece everything together. I have to admit, though, I really love the geta that I found on my Cricut Pagoda cartridge. So cute and so easy to cut out and piece. Every set of cards had at least two cards with the geta on them. LoL. And the Sister Stamp images are some of my favorites so I think I need to stamp and color more of them to replenish my supply. :D

I'm going to actually write a few more blog entries and set them to post over the next few days since I'm working every night this week except for Friday (but I have school and work at my other job and a meeting for an event at the University that's happening on Saturday so...) but by the time I'm able to post again I'll be all caught up! Yay! LoL. 

See you later!!