Thursday, November 18, 2010

Handprint Bat

Do you want an easy, low prep art project for your little one to do? This project is for you. It's pretty self explanatory, but here are the steps:

Step 1- Parents: Cut out the head, a circle with 2 pointy ears

OR for older kids or scissor practice, draw the head and have the kids cut it out themselves.

Step 2- Kids: Glue the head to orange, green, or purple paper (Halloween colors of course!)

Step 3- Kids: Glue google eyes (from $ store)

Step 4- Kids: Draw a mouth and legs

Step 5- Parents: Paint kids hands with washable black paint and put handprints on either side of the head.

Let dry.

Too Cute, huh?
Have fun

Gifts in a Jar

I won the Ball Canning party this spring and decided to use my left over jars to make some simple gifts to give away to friends during the holiday season.
A case of Ball Canning jars can run between $8 and $12 depending on the size jar you use. Plus all the great sales on baking items will make this an inexpensive and yet thoughtful gift! The best gifts come from the heart and from the kitchen in my opinion!

There are so many recipes for gifts in a jar, but I decided to make Biscotti because I was missing my Grandma and really wanted to honor her in making her Biscotti recipe into a Jar gift. However, that being said, I couldn't make my Grandma's actual recipe into a Jar gift because her dry ingredients don't fit in a jar. I still wanted to make a Biscotti Jar Gift though, so I did some research and found this yummy substitution:

Cranberry Biscotti in a Jar

Makes about 32
1 Quart Jar
3/4 cup dried cranberries or cherries
3/4 cup pecans
2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoon baking powder

2/3 cup sugar

Layer ingredients in order inside a a clean 1 quart jar. Tap gently on the counter top to settle each layer before adding the next. Add additional cranberries or pecans to top off the jar. I recommend putting the ingredients in the order listed, but to half the cranberries, pecans, and flour first and then repeat those layers again. As you can see in my demo jar that there is a lot of flour showing and it doesn't look as pretty as it would if it were layered more.

Attach these directions to the jar:

Cranberry Biscotti
1/3 C. Butter
2 Eggs

Beat 1/3 cup butter on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add 2 eggs and beat on medium until well combined. Using a wooden spoon, stir in contents of jar just until combined. Divide into 2 loaves on cookie sheet, chilling if necessary to make dough easier to handle. Each loaf should be about 9 inches long and 2 inches wide. Bake at 375°F for 25-30 min or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on sheet for 1 hour. Cut each loaf diagonally into 1/2 inch thick slices using a serrated (bread) knife. Place slices on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 325°F for 8 minutes, then turn over and bake for 8-10 minutes more or until dry and crisp. Transfer to wire rack to cool. Makes 32 cookies.

Note: I made the demo jar and these biscotti and very good!

Other Gifts in a jar recipes can be found at: (Ball canning website)

Other ideas for gifts in a jar:
~Make the biscotti and put inside the jar put in a basket with coffee items
~Make cookies the size of the jar circumference and layer them put in a basket with coffee items
~Make little soaps to put in the jars put in a basket with bath essentials (maybe those Mirra products we've gotten for free at Fry's, shampoos, lotions, etc)
~Make a scrapbookers basket and fill each small pint jar with different scrapbooking items (flowers, punches, grommets, chipboard, etc)

~Make a manly gift and drill the tops of the lids to the bottom of a pre-purchased shelf and fill the jars with nuts, bolts, etc and screw the jars to the tops.