Powder Your Own Sugar { DIY Powdered Sugar }

This post might be common sense to everyone else, but once I realized that you could turn sugar into powdered sugar at home I felt disappointed that I had gone to the store on more than one occasion to go buy powdered sugar.

To do this you need a wheat grinder or a blender. I have a fancy blendtec that I use for it and I’m not sure if a regular blender would work. If it works for you, please let me know!

Blendtec Directions:
Put about 1 1/2C of Sugar into the blender. Blend on Speed 5 for about 20 seconds. When it stops, use a spatula to make sure the sides and corners are being ground as well. They usually are, but with powdered sugar I don’t take a chance. Blend for another 20 seconds and then test the sugar to see how grainy it is. I usually grab a small amount and rub it between my fingers. If it feels coarse at all, then blend for another 20 seconds. Keep testing it and reblending it until it is fine and soft.

For a wheat grinder, follow the directions you use for grinding wheat but test the powdered sugar every so often to see how soft it is. I usually need powdered sugar for frosting and I don’t want gritty frosting, so I take every effort to make sure its perfect. I have never seen my powdered sugar be over-powdered so I guess it’s ok!

More Cooking Tips
Making the Most of Fresh Lemons
Not Fried Refried Beans
3 Delicious Blackberry Recipes

Almost Gourmet: Tomato Basil Soup and Fancy Grilled Cheese

Tomato Basil Soup
I bought this cup for my husband while he was in Afganistan and shipped it out to him, it reminds me of how he greets me everyday 🙂 I’m happy he was able to bring it home in one piece!

Last year I made this Tomato Basil Soup. It was really good, I was a little disappointed that I shared it with everyone, I wanted more for myself! Today I made the same soup (twice the size though!) and I had cooking in the slow cooker all day. All day the smell has been teasing me because it smells so good! I also added a little bit of Italian Herb Olive Oil that I recently bought in Sedona, because it too smelled so good that I couldn’t resist adding it.

I’m now making “Fancy Grilled Cheese”. It’s my usual grilled cheese with buttered edges but this time in the butter I added some garlic powder, Italian herbs and grated parmesan cheese. I am also broiling them in the oven instead of cooking them on the skillet. They just need to be flipped so that they are toasted on both sides.

Served with the tomato basil soup these are amazing! Or maybe it was just smelling them all day that has me a little too excited about them. 🙂 My son loved the grilled cheese the best, but he did eat a little of the soup with his grilled cheese dipped in it. My husband liked it dipped as well, he said it reminded him of mozzarella sticks and dipping sauce.

Like Tomato Basil Soup? Try These Other Great Recipes:
Deep Fried Delicious-ness: Mozzarella Sticks and More
Camping Food Menu and Ideas
3 Delicious Recipes for Blackberries
Caramel Apples

Decorated T-Shirt Crafts

Remember this skirt? I failed to mention that I burnt the iron-ons when I put them on it last time, so they fell off after the first wash (and the pictures!). Recently I added a piece of another t-shirt I had but didn’t like to wear as a top. I’m all set for any future patriotic holidays now. Or maybe a homecoming in the near future?

For the shorts I made here I decided to paint a little mustache on them. I had to cut out a few stencils until I got one that I liked. I taped it on and dabbed on the fabric paint and let them dry.

I think my sister will love these, she came up with the idea, but she doesn’t get them until her birthday!

The dress that I made a different sister was dressed up with this flower pin. The tutorial and better pictures are here.

See Also:
Make Your Own Iron Ons
Iron-On Embellished Skirt
T-Shirt Dress Tutorial

Cherry Dr. Pepper Can Bracelets

Last year I made these Coca-Cola Can bracelets. Every month it is still my most popular post. I hadn’t made any in quite awhile but a friend was disappointed that she never got one, so I had to pull my stuff out again to make some. This time I was a little bit more creative and we decided to bling them out a little bit more.

Go check out the first tutorial before you try to follow this tutorial, it will make everything easier!

Differences

Make the shape of the bracelet a little different, in the past I made them mostly square but the edges would catch on stuff and they would poke you or could rip.

You can choose to turn the edges back or forth. You will get a silver lining if they are turned out, but if they are turned under they will be less noticeable. It’s all about what you think looks best. I sometimes like the silver lining and sometimes want a cleaner edge. If you turn the edges under they shouldn’t scrape you as long as they are pressed very flat.

Instead of big holes for the ribbon, make very small holes with a pin and add jump rings. We also added metal clasps instead of ribbon for some of them. Or you can skip the holes all together if you roll the edges, and thread a small ribbon or elastic through.

Add more decoration to them by adding flowers or bows with hot glue.

Add fabric lining to give the bracelet a little more structure as well as comfort. I used t-shirt scraps because they don’t fray and just hot glued them in.

More Coca-Cola:
Coke Can Necklace
Decorating with Coca-Cola
Wallet with Charms from Coke Can
The Day I Wore a Coca-Cola T-shirt

DIY Toy Hammock

My son is collecting way too many toys, but I have a hard time getting rid of any. I have to start finding ways to organize them better so that they fit in our house! I have a feeling that we will have to turn one of our rooms into a playroom soon.

My inspiration came from The Junk Nest, check out her toy hammock here.

Materials:
Fabric
Rope (aka “Clothesline” from the Dollar Tree)

Directions:
1. Hem the two long edges.

2. Hem the two shorter edges with enough space to fit the rope inside the hem.

3. Slide the rope through each side.

4. Tie rope to crib, bed or wall.

Super complicated, right? If you need help, refer to the drawing below on my super cool legal pad from NAU. (My souvenir from visiting my sister!) Also please pretend that I wasn’t drawing it while someone was tugging on my arm and throwing books at me. It is a pretty good drawing for suffering through all that though!

See Also:
The Nursery (that has never been completely finished)
Bathroom Organization
Closet Door Writing

Removable Flower Pin to Dress Up Shirts

Recently I have been making tons of stuff from t-shirts, including these dresses. I made one for my sister’s birthday but it was from a plain V-Neck so I wanted to dress it up a little. With a pin, it can be used on other shirts and taken off when they are washed.

T-Shirt Dress with Flower Pin
Materials:
3 Flowers Made with This Tutorial
Pearl Beads
Felt
Safety Pin (Or two even!)

Directions:
Use this tutorial to make your flowers. Towards the end of the tutorial, use three pearls and stitch them to the center of the flower instead of the button.

Each flower will be stitched onto the felt.

The felt will be cut out around the three flowers.

Next, a safety pin will be added to the back and stitched on.

Now you have a fun pin that will work with almost any shirt and you can take it off to wash the shirt or dress.

Today at Arizona Mama: Red Sox Easter Basket

My husband and his family are big Red Sox fans. I will wear Red Sox stuff, but so far that’s about the extent of it for me. I’m sure my son will be getting into the baseball spirit this year so when I saw the ribbon, I had to buy it and decorate a basket for him.

Check out the tutorial for this Easter Basket here at Arizona Mama.

Today at Arizona Mama: Lace Cuff Bracelet

I love bracelets but never actually wear them. I recently was wearing the bracelet I made with my boys’ picture on it but then my little boy wanted to wear it. Don’t worry it was redone with camo fabric instead of the ribbon it first had. It made me realize that maybe I don’t like bracelets because I haven’t found the right one yet. When a friend wanted help making one I jumped at it, and made one for myself too. Check it out my new bracelet at Arizona Mama.

Fabric Headrest Mounted Tablet Holder

I saw a plastic one of these at Ross for $12.99 and I put it back because I figured I could make a fabric one! (Plus the plastic one looked totally cheesy and I was worried that the tablet would fall out!) This one only cost about a dollar or so, I think it’s a much better deal! This tablet holder is kind of an ugly project– I could make it cute, but it doesn’t have to be pretty because it’s useful and I’m lazy.

Also, this is for a 10.5 inch tablet, but use your own tablet measurements to figure out the right dimensions!

Materials:
1 foot Clear Vinyl (I bought 4 Gauge, at least that’s what the receipt said, I just picked the thinnest)
Scrap Fabric, Just a bit bigger than your tablet
Bias Tape
Ribbon

Directions:
Use your tablet to measure out your fabric. There should be at least and inch or two on each side.

Cut out the fabric, and cut out the same size for the plastic.

Next, you will want to go out to the car and measure around the headrest with a flexible tape measure. You will need the length around the top to bottom (make sure they overlap) and around the top, from side to side. That length, plus an extra 10 inches is how much ribbon you will need.

Each length of ribbon will be cut into two, but don’t do it evenly. Have more on one side than the other so that the bow you tie will be able to be tied off to the side, so that there won’t be a knot in the back of the person’s head that is sitting in the seat.

Put your plastic on top of your back fabric and place the ribbons in the middle, with the edges at the edge of the fabric and plastic,

Sew the 3 sides, and turn it inside out. (This is where more work could be done to make it prettier, those seams are pretty ugly! Covering them with bias tape might be cute.)

Next, make a bias tape or use an already bought one and finish off the top edge. A ribbon will need to be added to the top as well.

This is going to be so helpful for our next road trip, as my son has started watching cartoons lately. I’m going to try to save it for when he gets really cranky though!

I was impressed to find out that the touch screen was still able to be used with the clear vinyl. The vinyl does cling to the screen as well.

More DIY Bags:
Play Mat Toy Bag
Padded Tablet Case
Messenger Bag

Road Trip Tips:
The Greatest Trip I Hardly Remember
Road Trip Packing List Printable(And One For Toddlers)
Eating Out of a Hotel Room {Vacation Money Saving Ideas}

Disney Souvenirs

I’m a thrifty person, so when I go to Disneyland I am looking in the shops for ideas of what to make at home! Here are a few ideas that I have done so far- it means buying a small souvenir at Disneyland but you can use these souvenirs to make better things from them for less!

Smashed Pennies

I already posted about making a display for your smashed pennies, and since that post I have filled up my souvenir penny display quite a bit more!

Souvenir Penny Display

 

Buttons

The free buttons that they give you at City Hall (or some of the shops) are awesome as magnets. They are so easy to put together too! They give out “I’m Celebrating” ones if you aren’t there for your first time, anniversary or a birthday! I took an anniversary one to send to my husband when our anniversary does come up.

 

Pins

If you are into pinning and reading the different articles about saving at Disney you may already know that you can buy a lot of pins for much less online different places than at Disney. You may not get ones that you like, but you can trade them to get ones you like when you get there. Cast Members have to trade, so check out their pins to see if they have any you like!

I am not one to put a ton of pins on a lanyard, I bought pins to put them on other stuff to make a plain hat, purse, etc into a Disney hat, purse, etc. I took the flower off of my hat in order to put a pin on it, and my other pins are going to be put on the next purse and wallet I make. These pins (I bought them at full price because this was a last minute trip) were the priciest souvenir I bought, but they are much cheaper than buying a Disney Hat or Wallet.

I used the pirate pin to decorate this bag I created. My full tutorial is over at Arizona Mama. Click here to see my pirate satchel.
Pirate Bag TutorialAt Disneyland they also had some souvenir pins that were made to look like buttons, but instead of buying those I had fun putting real buttons on things- just like this cute wallet! Click here to see the tutorial of how I created this wallet.
Button Mickey Wallet

I hope you like what I did with my Disney Souvenirs and that it gives you more ideas!

Other Souvenir Ideas:
Heartbeat of Disney T-Shirt
Souvenir Baseball Bat Display
T-Shirt Quilt