Monday, October 31, 2011

Planning for the holidays

I can't believe it's already getting to that time! I try to get holiday planning done early so I'm not stressed when it gets closer. Also, Hanukkah tends to be earlier in December (or even November sometimes) so I like to start early. Luckily, this year Hanukkah is late so we have more time to enjoy the holidays and get in the holiday spirit.

I'm super excited to send out our first-ever photo cards showing off our new little bundle of joy! I've been racking my brain trying to come up with some fun photo ideas. What mom doesn't love taking tons of pics of their little one and dressing them up in cute outfits?

Because we're a mixed religion household, it can be hard to find cards that all our family & friends can enjoy. However, Shutterfly has a lot of options that I really love. I'm thinking about one of the holiday cards from here such as:

And while I'm ordering, I may have to get a cute photo calendar for my desk at work because a mom can never have too many photos of her baby! If I have to be back at work, I need to have lots of pics of the little guy around me.
Just to make things even easier, I'm thinking about buying some personalized photo gifts this year for family & friends. I gave a few of these out last year and everyone loved them!

What kind of holiday cards are you planning to send out?

Monday, October 24, 2011

Halloween Footprint Card

I've been looking for some fun crafts to do with Connor (getting him started early!) and this was the perfect project for us!

I had some old black cards & envelopes I've been saving since I was in high school. (Hello, pack rat!) Finger paint doesn't come in white, but I used some acrylic paint that washes off really easily.
Planning for a mess, I did this on the bathroom counter with a plastic bag under the baby. On the other side of the sink was his bath tub so I could drop him right in after we finished. For itty bitty babies, I'd suggest painting the bottom of their foot and bringing the paper up to their foot while they lay flat. It worked a lot better than holding them up and trying to stamp their foot on the paper.
I used a black marker to draw eyes on the ghosts and a silver marker to write on the cards.

On the inside of each card, I put a photo of Connor in his pumpkin hat that I made. (I was planning on putting a photo of him in his costume, but he wasn't in the mood to pose for pictures that day.)
Each one is a little different & I wish I could have kept them all. I sent them out to some family & friends and everyone loves them!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Baby Pumpkin Hat

Isn't he adorable?

Connor is doing great and growing so fast! But he's still pretty small and it's hard to find cute Halloween stuff that's small enough. I absolutely love little baby hats, so I couldn't resist making him a little pumpkin hat for the fall.
I found a couple hats that I know fit him to use as a template.
I used the width of the green striped hat and traced around it on the orange knit fabric. If you don't have a hat, the bottom brim was 6.75 inches wide (that includes a .25" seam allowance) and that's probably around a newborn size.
I drew the hat shape on the fabric, stitched around the edge, and left a small opening at the top for the leaves. To make sure the hat fit correctly, I tried it on the baby and adjusted the top to fit snugly around his head.
To finish the bottom edge, I just folded the fabric up and sewed around.
For the leaves at the top, I used some stiff felt and freehand drew three leaf shapes.
I arranged them so they overlapped slightly and stitched them together across the bottom.
With right sides of the hat in, I placed the leaves on the inside and stitched the opening closed. Then when I turned the hat right sides out, the leaves would stick out at the top.
I had no idea how easy it would be to make these!

My little sleepy pumpkin : )

Monday, October 17, 2011

Pumpkin Favorites

I have a confession.

I don't like fall.

I get sad that summer is ending and fall makes me think of cold & snow coming quickly. But the one thing I DO like about fall is pumpkin! You can never get enough pumpkin! From crafts, to pumpkin costumes, to pumpkin spice lattes...they're the only thing I love about fall!

In honor of my love of anything pumpkin, here's some of my favorite crafts and recipes. Scroll down to the bottom of my blog and click on pumpkin to see all my pumpkin-related posts.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Banana Caramel Challah Bread Pudding

This is one of those recipes that tastes amazing, but doesn't look as good in pictures. Bread pudding probably isn't the most photogenic food in the world because it looks like mush, but it's SO good! This one is also low fat so you have my permission to indulge! It's the perfect dessert for breaking the fast 0n Yom Kippur coming up later this week or any other occasion.

• 2/3 cup skim milk
• 2 tablespoons brown sugar
• 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
• 2 eggs
• 4 cups cubed challah bread
• cooking spray
• 1 cup mashed banana (about 2 bananas)
• 2 tablespoons sugar
• 4 tablespoons fat free caramel topping
• powdered sugar

Mix the first 4 ingredients in a bowl.

Pour bread cubes into a 9x9 baking pan covered with baking spray.

Pour liquid mixture over bread cubes and top with mashed banana.

Sprinkle mixture with sugar.

Chill for 30 minutes in the refrigerator.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Bake for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown.

Before serving, top with caramel sauce and powdered sugar.

Really, really yummy!
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