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From Clock to Shadow Box

A couple of years ago, we bought a thrift store clock to gut out its gears for our Steampunk costumes.


We have had a lot of upheaval in our home and have been forced to go through all of our crap and decide what stays and what goes. When I got to the clock I decided to keep it–but only if I immediately put it to use.  This was one of the fastest and easier projects I’ve done in a while.


Old clock

I wanted a shadow box, but I couldn’t decide what to put in it.  I’m trying to incorporate my girlier tastes with my family’s more Geeky tastes in our family room and my husband’s more masculine taste as well.  So I decided on our family crest, since we are Genealogy geeks, it is fun and adds some heritage and character to the space.

Added Paint and family crest display

I kind of love it and can’t wait to finish the wall around it and hide those cords.




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Filed under Crafts and Gifts, DIY, Home and Lawn

Porcupines and a Memory

At least once a week, my girls and I visit my husband’s grandma who has reached that point where she can’t leave her house and gets rather depressed.  her mind is fine, but her body is failing.  I want my girls to be able to understand that caring for someone is more than cleaning or just sitting.  It is realizing what they need.  When we talked about it, we decided Grandma misses being in charge of anything.  People take care of her and visit, but she is losing the ability to make decisions and plan out what to do in situations.  One of her favorite things to do was cook, but it is hard to lift or handle hot things.  So we found one of her old recipes that she could handle and had her help the girls make it.  I haven’t seen her this happy in a while.


Porcupines– Think Rice Crispy Treat wrapped around the marshmallow instead of mixed with it.

I have her recipe card which has her handwriting on it and the woman she got the recipe from.  I love that she has the box still with all of that delicious history and labors of love.  A grandmother’s recipe box is a treasure chest of memories and tastes of childhood and culture.


Add everything but the Mallows and Crispies:

IMG_0071  IMG_0073IMG_0074

Melt in microwave and stir well.


Use a fork to roll a marshmallow in caramel.


Roll in Rice Crispies and place on waxed paper to cool.


It made for a fun memory for the kids and Great-Grandma.  She perked up and was able to go through a recipe guiding the girls.  No oven needed, no stress and the mess was easily handled.

Oh, and they are fantastic… and addictive.


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Filed under Children, Family, Food and Drink, Motherhood, Recipes

DIY Big Black Frame for photo booth and decor

With an upcoming Halloween/Birthday party, I wanted a huge frame for a photo booth.  Turns out, it is a cute overall decor item too!

Simple black frame from press board

Simple black frame from press board

It started when the fall clean up for our city was taking the large garbage items.  I looked a the huge piece of press board we had in the garage and wanted it re-purposed or thrown out.  With the upcoming party, I thought I’d repurpose it for a photo booth.

Step one: Find a work station.  I had nothing that large, so I used to long tables.

Step two:  Measure out and trace your frame.

Measure and trace the guide for cutting

Measure and trace the guide for cutting

Step three: Use a drill to make starting your cut and making corners easier.

Step four: Use your favorite saw for the job.  I love my jigsaw.

The hole you drilled helps you start cutting lowering your chance of a snapped blade.

The hole you drilled helps you start cutting lowering your chance of a snapped blade.

Step five: Admire your handiwork.  Take a break and grab your choice of covering.

The cut out frame

Step six: Cover the baby up.  I was going for a Halloween look, so I used a Dollar Store black plastic table cloth and packing tape, as I misplaced the duct tape I wanted.  Your size and shape makes a difference in how you wrap.  Mine was really large and I made it six inches thick the entire way around the frame.  So I cut the table cloth into strips and taped it.

Duct tape would have been better, but the packing tape held.

Duct tape would have been better, but the packing tape held.

Step seven: Admire your handiwork again.  It’s not too shabby and it didn’t take long.

Wrapped frame

Step eight: Add embellishments like cobwebs and other decor.

Finished Product.

Finished Product.


For the party, I’ll move it out and prop it up, but for now, I rather like it by the door.



Filed under Budget, Crafts and Gifts, DIY, Party Planning



I found this recipe in Laurie David’s The Family Dinner under the title Vietnamese Soup in a Teapot. yeah… it’s Pho. The good stuff too.

This site has copied the recipe exactly. YUM!

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by | July 17, 2013 · 4:06 am