Saturday, March 31, 2012

Bunny and Chick Oreo Pops {Video}


Here is another video I did for Fox59.

In it I show you how to make Bunny and Chick Oreo Pops.

If you'd like to see my original Bunny Oreo Pop blog post, go here.

If you'd like to see my original Chick Oreo Pop blog post, go here.

To see the video, click on the image below!

Simply Designing Bunny and Chick Oreo Pops

You can also click here to see the video.

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Friday, March 30, 2012

Simply Link {Party}


I realize I have been a bit absent from my blog recently.

I have been spending a lot of time outdoors with my kiddos!  I even have rosy cheeks to prove it.

I have also been busy at work with videos for Fox (I will be rolling the rest of these out on my blog soon, but here is the first video.)

And I have been trying to reflect a bit about my blog and it's direction.  Good news is that there are no real changes.  I am not going to quite blogging, I don't even intend to slow down.  :)

But I love going on Fox59 for their morning show!  I also LOVED taping the series of videos for Fox59's unique online content!  I wish I could figure out how to do that full-time!  I honestly love it.

As I've been reflecting on this, I had the crazy thought, if I was approached about doing a tv show, what would it even be about!?  (I realize my blog can be a bit scattered (food, treats, crafts, home decor, kid crafts, DIY projects...)

And so I would like you to imagine with me for a minute, if I had a tv show, what would it be about?

I'd love to get your ideas and suggestions!  What type of projects do you love MOST on my blog, what would you like to SEE MORE OF?  You can even tell me what you would like to see less of, if you aren't too mean :)

Until then, let's PARTY!

PS - if you are a producer or a tv network, call me :)


Thanks so much for stopping by for this week's Simply Link Party!  I am so excited to see what you've created!



  • You can link up pretty much anything as long as you "created" it (Food, craft, home decor item, a beautiful garden, a photograph, etc.  I am really flexible!)  
  • Please keep it family friendly.  
  • Please no links to shops or giveaways.  
  • I reserve the right to delete any links that aren't appropriate. 
  • By linking up you are giving me permission to feature or show off your project (I will link back to you of course.)


Also, I would love it if you linked back to my site and mentioned on your blog, facebook or twitter about my link party!  Help me spread the word please!

And please visit 2-3 other links and leave them a nice, meaningful comment!  Thanks!



I participate in the link parties found here.
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Thursday, March 29, 2012

Spring Chick Oreo Pops


It is no secret that I love Oreos.

I have been known to eat and entire box of Oreos by myself.  I have been known to make them into Frosted Oreo Brownies, Truffles (aka Oreo Cookie Balls), Oreo Bark and even into Bunny Pops.

And.  I also love Wilton products!  In another life (aka approximately 4 years ago) I actually took all of the cake decorating classes Wilton offers!  I loved them!

Throughout those classes and ever since then, I discovered how many fabulous products Wilton offers!  I own so many Wilton things!  I am especially impressed with their extensive variety of sprinkles (we love us some sprinkles in our house!), the amazing colors of candy melts they have, their wonderful icing tips, and really, just their genius in creating wonderful, affordable, high quality products that are simple and amazing to use!

So, combining my two loves of Wilton and Oreos :) I wanted to show you a simple, delicious treat just in time for your Easter celebrations!

Today I am going to show you how to make really cute Spring Chick Oreo Pops!


To make these you will need:

  • Oreos (double stuffed are best)
  • Wilton brand Candy Melts in Yellow
  • Pop sticks (I used Wilton brand)
  • Wilton Confetti Sprinkles, orange (available in their Flowerful Medley Sprinkle Mix)
  • Wilton Daisies Sprinkles, yellow and orange (available in their Flowerful Medley Sprinkle Mix)
  • Mini Confetti Sprinkles (yellow) (regular confetti sprinkles will work too)
  • Wilton FoodWriter Edible Colored Marker, black


First, you will want to melt your Candy Melts.  There are several ways to do this and I have gone into great detail here.  However, let me tell you that Wilton Brand Chocolate Candy Melts are A.MAZ.ING!  It is so much easier to melt candy melts then it is to melt regular chocolate.  

And as long as I remember to heat these at 50% power in my microwave for 10-20 seconds at a time, stirring in between, these always melt into a perfectly smooth, amazingly wonderful texture for dipping.  I choose to use Wilton Candy Melts whenever possible because they are just so easy to work with and really are fairly fail-proof!  Seriously.

Next, go ahead and twist those Oreos apart just like you did last week when you were a kid.

Dip one end of a pop stick into the melted chocolate and carefully press into the filling.  (I forgot to take a photo when I did this with my yellow melted chocolate, so pretend the white melting chocolate is really yellow.)

The filling will crack.  Don't worry, it's ok.


 Just press the filling together a bit and put the Oreo back together.


Let the chocolate set for a couple minutes before proceeding.

Then, you will dip the entire Oreo into your yellow melting chocolate (again, let's just pretend this chocolate is really yellow...I was doing two projects at once and forgot to snap enough photos as I was working!)


While your chocolate covered yellow Oreo pops are drying, let's go ahead and assemble the Chick face!

For each face, you will need (1) yellow candy melt, (2) orange confetti sprinkles, (2) yellow mini confetti sprinkles (regular would work too), the black FoodWriter pen, melted chocolate and a toothpick.



Lay your candy melt down on waxed paper and using a bit of melted chocolate on a toothpick, place a small dab of chocolate where you will place your eyes and a little larger dab of chocolate where your beak will go.

Working quickly, place (2) confetti sprinkles in yellow down for the eyes, and then use (2) orange confetti sprinkles for the beak as shown in the photo below.

Using your black FoodWriter, place two dots for the eyes on the yellow confetti sprinkles.

Let your chick faces set.

After your Oreo Pops and your Chick Faces are set, you can take a bit more chocolate and adhere the face to the Oreo.



Then grab (2) orange Daisy sprinkles and (1) yellow Daisy sprinkle and attach (using chocolate on a toothpick) to your Oreo for the Chick's feet and tuft on top of it's head.


Aren't these just so cute!?!?  I think they would make a cute treat for the kids Easter Baskets, a cute teacher gift or neighbor gift.  Or just eat them all yourself, like I did :)

I love working with Wilton brand Candy Melts and I love the amazing variety of sprinkles that they have!  

For this project I used these Yellow Candy Melts:
Wilton Candy Melts 14-Ounce, Yellow
{via}

For this project I mainly used sprinkles from their Flowerful Medley package:

{via}

You can purchase Wilton brand products at most craft stores as well as cake decorating supply stores.

I was not compensated for this post, however, Wilton did send me some of this product for review purposes.  All opinions expressed are 100% completely mine.

You can find out more about Wilton here, or follow them on Facebook or Twitter.

Oreo in no way sponsored this post, I just really happen to love Oreos.


(this idea was inspired by this post here and by Wilton's amazing products!)

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Spring Moss Wreath {Video}


I wanted to share the videos that I created for Fox59's website with you!  I can't believe that they are already posting on Fox's website!  It is so fun and so exciting!

I already showed you a step by step how to for this Spring Moss Wreath on my blog, but if you are more of a visual person (which I am) go ahead and click the image below and you'll get to see my Video for the Spring Moss Wreath!

Spring Moss Wreath by Simply Designing

You can also click here.

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Quick and Simple Place Mats {with Purple Cows}


I just discovered a really great brand of crafty products!

Purple Cows!  Have you heard of them?

They make a plethora of fun and creative products including laminators, adhesive, craft irons, stamps, and trimmers to name a few.  They have a lot of amazing products for scrapbookers and crafters!

Purple Cows has so generously sent me an amazing package of products to review and I am so excited to share them all with you.

Today, I want to show you how I made really simple Place Mats using only a book and Purple Cows' amazing laminator.


I have never owned a laminator before, but I can't tell you how many countless hours and dollars I have spent at copy centers paying someone else to laminate things for me.  So I was really excited that Purple Cows sent me a laminator to review!  It meant I finally was able to make place mats for my kids without dragging my kiddos to the copy store for hours!

So here's how to make simple and cute place mats:


You will start with a book that you don't mind cutting up.  You can use one you have, but I decided to search goodwill, amazon used books and other places to find a book that I liked and that was inexpensive.  I ended up finding the perfect Dr Seuss ABC book!  (So my kids can eat and learn :)


You will just carefully rip the pages out of the book that you wish to use and trim the edges so they are nice and straight.


While the laminator is warning up, I put two book pages between each laminator hot pocket.


Then I carefully guided the pocket into the laminator and then the laminator did the rest of the work!  I just sat back and watched the pocket go all the way through and voila!


Instant, cute, educational, inexpensive Place Mats for my kiddos!


How fun is that!?


I really loved Purple Cows' laminator.  It was very quick to warm up and to use, it worked perfectly, without a single problem, and I love how slim their design is, it is very compact and easy to store.  And their laminator works with both hot and cool laminating pockets!

Their laminator is also really reasonably priced!  I have seen them for sale at my local craft store, and a friend of mine bought hers at Costco!  But of course you can always buy one online on Purple Cows' website here.

I have so many great ideas up my sleeve now that I have a laminator at my disposal!

If you'd like to learn more about Purple Cows amazing products and their laminator, you can visit their website here,  follow their blog here, follow them on Facebook here,  or Twitter here.  



I was not compensated for this post, however Purple Cows did send me product for review purposes.  All opinions are 100% mine.

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Monday, March 26, 2012

Zebra and Hounds Tooth Printed Vinyl


I love the new Zebra Striped and Hounds Tooth Printed Vinyl from Expressions Vinyl!  It is so cute!

Head on over to Expressions Vinyl Blog and you can see the complete how-to for a couple of cute, no machine required, projects using these two cute vinyls!



Go here to see more.

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Friday, March 23, 2012

Simply Link {Party}


What a busy week.  I've decided to take up running again and I hosted a fairly large church event yesterday.  And this oddly warm weather has just got us sitting and playing outdoors.

But don't worry.  I already have a couple posts scheduled for next week so I will be back up and running as usual next week :)

Until then, I can't wait to see what you've created!

Please link up your latest creations.  You can link up pretty much anything as long as you "created" it (food, craft, home decor item, a beautiful garden, a photograph, etc.  I am really flexible!)  Please keep it family friendly.  


Please no links to shops or giveaways.  I reserve the right to delete any links that aren't appropriate. By linking up you are giving me permission to feature or show off your project (I will link back to you of course.)

Also, I would love it if you linked back to my site and mentioned on your blog, facebook or twitter about my link party!  Help me spread the word please!



And please visit 2-3 other links and leave them a nice, meaningful comment!  Thanks!



I participate in the link parties found here.
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Monday, March 19, 2012

Text On A Path {ie Curved Text} on your Silhouette


Hop on over to Expressions Vinyl Blog today where I've guest posted on how to create Text on a Path (curved text) on your Silhouette!

I also show you how to use "Offset" and how to make this super cute tshirt using Flocked Iron On Vinyl.


Want to buy a Silhouette Cameo or Vinyl, I suggest Expressions Vinyl as they have the best price around and super fast shipping!

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Saturday, March 17, 2012

Winner


Time to announce the winner of the We Love Citrus Giveaway!

And the winner is...



Mike and Jen!  Congratulations!!  You have 3 days to email me at simplydesigning@gmail.com in order to claim your prize pack!


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Features!


I realize I have been slacking in my blogging duties, but we suddenly got this burst of warm weather!  We had 70 degrees most of this week so the kids and I spent every possible moment outdoors this week!  It was wonderful, refreshing and much needed for all of us!

But I did want to kick off this weekend with a few cool St.Patrick's Day inspired features:



And here are a few other links that are just AMAZING as well:




PS - there is still time to LINK UP at my weekly Friday Link Party here.

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Friday, March 16, 2012

Simply Link {Party}


Thanks so much for stopping by for this week's link party!  I am so excited to see what you have created this week!

But first, today is the last day to enter to WIN a great GIVEAWAY from We Love Citrus.  Go here and enter to win!

Please link up your latest creations.  You can link up pretty much anything as long as you "created" it (Food, craft, home decor item, a beautiful garden, a photograph, etc.  I am really flexible!)  Please keep it family friendly.  Please no links to shops or giveaways.  I reserve the right to delete any links that aren't appropriate. By linking up you are giving me permission to feature or show off your project (I will link back to you of course.)

Also, I would love it if you linked back to my site and mentioned on your blog, facebook or twitter about my link party!  Help me spread the word please!

And please visit 2-3 other links and leave them a nice, meaningful comment!  Thanks!




I participate in the link parties found here.
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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Popsicles in MINUTES with Zoku Quick Pop Maker


For about a year, I have been eyeing an amazing little machine.  I have contemplated the ways I could give my kids healthier treats, if only I had this really cute little gadget.  I have even hinted to my husband on several occasions how cool I thought it was.

So you can only imagine how incredibly happy I was when I was offered the opportunity to review one!  Jumping, squeals of delight, fist pumps, cheerleader-like jumps...yup, I was that excited.

And what little machine is this you ask? A Zoku Quick Pop Maker!



Have you heard of Zoku?  Their Quick Pop Maker is an amazing kitchen gadget that allows you to make your own popsicles in about 7 minutes!  Yes, I said 7 minutes!  Not hours, not overnight, popsicles in minutes!!


So when I was given the chance to review a Zoku Duo Quick Pop Maker, I was so excited and so hopeful, but there was a teeny tiny ity bity eensy weensy part of me that was a little bit skeptical.  I mean, I grew up making popsicles by having to pour the juice into a popsicle mold and waiting hours, or even overnight, to actually have a popsicle!  And then sometimes they would stick to the container so you couldn't even eat your highly anticipated popsicle. :(  So surely I thought there would be at least a few tricks to getting these pops to come out correctly, right!?


But I have to be honest, and honestly I was so incredibly impressed!  This little baby can whip out 2 perfect popsicles in about 7 minutes, and you can easily do another batch or two right away!  This machine can do exactly what it claims it can do, simply, and that always makes me so happy when I find a product that does that!


This amazing pop maker freezes a multitude of liquids into frozen popsicle treats without a cord and on your counter top!  You simply put this small machine in your freezer for 24 hours (you can also just store your machine in the freezer so you can quickly make pops anytime!), pour your liquid in, and in about 7 minutes, you have delicious treats that you can feel good about giving to your kids (and eating yourself!).


You can use milk, flavored milk, juices, yogurt and many other combinations of liquids to create these yummy treats.  And, you can even make popsicles that have a different flavored core  (orange creamsicle anyone!?)


You can create multi-layered pops, pops with diagonal lines, pops with faces or fruit.  You can even coat your pops in chocolate!  

  

Holy cow the possibilities are endless!


When I got my machine I quickly unwrapped it, and then patiently waited 24 hours while it froze in the freezer.  I wanted to start off with something simple.  Zoku has a recipe book as well as a blog with a plethora of ideas for pops, but I wanted to just start simple.  So I grabbed what I had in my fridge and got to work!


My daughter helped me, and under her direction, first we created a strawberry and chocolate milk creation!  You simply pour strawberry milk in the bottom of the machine, let it set, then add your chocolate milk, and let that set.  Multi-layered pops take a longer then 7 minutes because you need each layer to freeze prior to adding the next, which means you might not be able to get three batches out of the machine before needing to refreeze it, but it is totally worth it!  They are super cute and super fun!


Once the pop is frozen, you take their handy Super Tool, twist it on the popsicle handle and the popsicle come out of the Zoku easily and cleanly.


No mess, no popsicle stuck to the machine, nothing broke, I got a perfect popsicle on the first try!  Holy cow I was amazed!  Look how cute these are!? 


If, on the first try, I can get my pops to look almost as good as Zoku's pops do...this machine is definitely super simple to use!  Love that!

Zoku also makes this really neat kit called the Zoku Character Kit that has cute little cookie-cutter-esque shapes in it.  So we decided to try the character kit on a few juice based pops.

Zoku Character Kit

You can take an apple or pear (or even fruit roll-up), cut small shapes out and then soak the fruit shapes in water for a few seconds.


After they have soaked you will put the shapes on this handy little stick, insert it into the pop machine and stick it on one side of the pop machine.  Fill your pop reservoir with juice and watch the pops freeze in minutes!

 

My daughter loves how the character pops turned out and the possibilities of how to make these is really endless!


The instructions said to be sure that the shapes are fairly thin...when you don't get the shapes thin enough, they stick in the wrong spot and you might have eyes what are very far apart for example and mouths that disappear.  So you will want to be sure that your fruit slices aren't too thick.  But other then my user error, the Character Kit was really fun and so simple to use!


The Zoku Duo Pop Maker can make 2 pops at a time and up to 6 without refreezing it!  The Duo Pop Maker comes with the machine itself, 4 popsicle sticks, 4 drip guards, and one Super Tool to help you get the pop out of the machine with ease.  And it is very compact too!  The machine is only 5.75" x 4.5" x 4.75" but it still creates nice sized popsicles.


If you need to create more pops, you can check out the Original Pop Maker that freezes 3 popsicles at a time and up to 9 without refreezing!


Zoku Quick Pop Maker


Or if you just need one pop, the Single Pop Maker creates 1 pop at a time and up to 3 without refreezing.  




There are many fun accessories you can purchase as well like the Character Kit, Storage Case, Tools (including a special tool to help you make different flavored cores), and a Chocolate Station (yum!).

Zoku Character Kit 

And of course the Quick Pop Maker is BPA and phthalate free.

Did I meantion you only need to wipe it down to clean it?  So it is super simple to clean too!

Oh I just can't wait until the summer when my kids are begging for popsicles, I will have no problem giving them this quick and healthy alternative that we can have fun making together!


I love that I can control what goes into their popsicles!


We have had so much fun with the Zoku and definitely love it!  If you are looking for a fun way to make healthy popsicles, I would definitely recommend looking into the Zoku Quick Pop Maker!

If you'd like to find out more, you can check out Zoku's website, their blog , and you can like Zoku on Facebook and follow them on Twitter!   

I was not compensated for this blog post.  I did however receive a Zoku Duo Pop Maker and Character Kit for purposes of my review.  All opinions are 100% mine.

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