Monday, December 22, 2008

Mistletoe Kissing Ball

This Mistletoe Kissing Ball is my own adaptation from a Martha Stewart creation. Though it's similar, the biggest difference really is that I made mine on a budget, choosing denim leaves instead of Dupioni silk, etc. saving quite a lot of money. (Estimated cost: 48.00 for the materials for six balls, $8.00 per ball.)

These mistletoe balls are especially perfect for hostess gifts for all of the many parties you are visiting this holiday season. They do take a little time and since it's already last minute and they are very detailed (but they are terribly gorgeous!)... so, craft! Craft like the wind!

Materials Needed:

4" styrofoam ball
Silver spray paint
Cup hook
Craft glue
12 Miniature pine cones with floral wire tied at the bottom (to attach to ball)
Silver glitter
White glitter
Miniature ornaments or 2 Beaded branches (I purchased discounted champagne-colored beaded twigs from Michael's Craft, marked down to $.59/each)
Wire cutters
1/4 yard light green denim
Floral pins (with white pearlescent heads)
Floral tape
Decorative ribbon in the color of your choice (for hanging)


Begin by spray painting silver your styrofoam ball and cup hook. Allow to dry according to directions on paint can. Attach hook to ball using craft glue.

Prepare pine cones by dotting the edges with craft glue and sprinkling with silver glitter. After they dry, attach each one to the ball at random with glue on attached wire.

Pinecones attached to painted styrofoam ball.

Prepare miniature ornaments. If you purchased a beaded branch, remove beads using wire cutters, and allowing for at least one inch of wire to attach to ball. Separate beads evenly into two separate piles. Leave one pile plain, while glittering the second pile of beads.

Beaded branch in a champagne color, purchased from Michael's Crafts.

Wire cutters and plain beads removed from branch, leaving a one-inch wire stem.

To glitter the beads, first coat each bead with a thin layer of craft glue using a dot of glue placed on the tip of your finger. Roll in a bowl of white glitter and set aside for at least an hour to dry.

Glittered beads using craft glue and white glitter.

Once both groups of beads are ready, coat their wires in craft glue and attach at random to the styrofoam ball until almost completely covered (leaving a few small holes is fine).

Ball with beads and pine cones attached.

To create the leaves, first draw a leaf on a piece of paper, about one inch tall. Cut your denim fabric into strips and layer four at a time. Use clips to keep them from coming apart while cutting. Holding your template in place, carefully cut around template through all four layers. Each ball will require about 40 leaves, or to your liking.

Use a floral pin as the mistletoe berry. Use 1-3 pins for every two leaves. Wrap together using floral tape. (Pull floral tape taut to activate its glue to keep it in place). Randomly place mistletoe into ball, coating the floral pins with glue first.

Mistletoe leaves made from denim. Place two leaves together, secure with pin (left). Wrap bottom with floral tape (right).

Cut ribbon to desired length and tie with a bow at the top. Attach to cup hook on ball.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Great deal on 'All You' magazine

Cheryl Hinton is a Southern Living at HOME consultant that has a current deal right now where you can purchase a 2-year subscription to the popular All You magazine for only $19.95. 'All You' is only available for purchase in Wal-Mart stores, and the shelf price is more than $2. Cheryl is able to get us 24 issues for only 83¢ each! I am passing along this information with her permission.

Cheryl has set up a way to place your orders online with a credit card. If you'd prefer, she can also call you directly to place your order over the phone. You can pay via credit card or personal check over the phone

To order online:
Click HERE.
Type 40776 into the Product Search box
Click "All You personal subscription"
Click "How to Purchase"
Enter "Kim J" into the Hostess Name boxes
Click the first name link to access Kim's December 15 party
Type 40776 into the Product Search box again
Click "All You personal subscription"
Click "Select this Item"
On same page, click on the "Finalize and submit your order" link
Your subtotal should be $19.95. If it's more than that, double-check the number of subscriptions in your cart.
Click "Continue to Checkout"

Fill in your personal information and follow the directions for payment. Make sure to use your MAILING address. The confirmation statement about items being shipped to the hostess only applies to PRODUCTS, and NOT MAGAZINES. There is no additional charge for the magazine to be delivered directly to your home. The $10 charge mentioned is only for the direct shipment of products. **PLEASE do not check that box!**

If you wish to purchase a Gift Subscription, just place an order using the name and address of the person you are buying the subscription for. You can then use your credit card information to pay for it.

Cheryl has made herself available to answer your questions or address any problems you encounter during the ordering process. Her contact information follows, or you can fill out and submit this simple form.

Cheryl Hinton
Independent Consultant
Southern Living at Home

~Cheryl just emailed me and said the ALL You deal will be going on after the first of the year. I will post again in January with updated 'party information' if you'd like. Thanks!~

Monday, December 8, 2008

Hipster Holiday Music

If you're one of those types that greatly dislikes the same old Christmas songs year in and year out, we have just the suggestion for you!

Enter Pandora!

If you haven't heard yet, is a free online service that allows you to listen to specific genres you enjoy. You simply enter in your favorite band as a "station", and it generates an endless play list of suggested similar artists, so your favorites, along with some new bands you may not have heard of yet are being played.

For Christmas, we suggest entering in "Sufjan Stevens (holiday)" as a new station... it's hip, young, and unique Christmas music from bands like Relient K, Jars of Clay, and of course Sufjan Stevens!

Just in case you needed a break from your mom's Christmas music...

(Thanks, Jamie!)

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Eggnog Pancakes

This delightful and delicious recipe has just the right amount of eggnog and a healthy dose of Christmas cheer! Excellent topped with a bit of butter and maple syrup!


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 1/2 cup eggnog
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/4 to 1/2 cup milk, add until desired consistency


In a large bowl, mix together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, combine eggnog, oil, and egg.

Create a well in the dry ingredients and pour wet ingredients into well. Whisk together. Add milk until you reach your desired consistency and mix.

Cook on griddle or stove top until the middle is cooked through.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Check out Weefinds and Win a Toys R Us Gift Card!

Introducing Weefinds - a new site run by three moms that tells you where the best online deals are! Christine, Debbie, and Sherri are moms of young children and are always on the lookout for cheap deals. They've gathered them here on their new website. Right now they are having a giveaway - just post a comment sharing your favorite Christmas gift idea for under $25, and a winner will be randomly chosen on December 7th. I just popped over and there are some good ideas there already - hmmm...that reminds me, I better start making my Christmas list!

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