Tidbit Times

Tiny Tidbits of my Time

May Day Baskets April 30, 2012

Filed under: Crafty Bits — tidbittimes @ 3:31 pm
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Tomorrow is MAY DAY!  When I was growing up May Day was a big deal in our neighborhood.  There were several kids living on my block and we had fun bringing treats to each other.  I think I’ll always remember the best May Day basket we got was a caterpillar made from an egg carton filled with Brach’s candy that one family made every year.  I want to pass on the May Day tradition to my kids since it is so much fun!  Since we don’t know too many people in our neighborhood, we made treats for daycare.

I found this idea of Pintrest by Skip to My Lou.  It turned out to be a fun project for Will and I to do together (part of it anyway).



Springy Scrapbook paper (8-1/2 x 11″)  — one sheet for each basket

May Basket Template (see link below)

Popsicle sticks (one for each flower)



glue stick

glue dots

Hershey Kisses (or other candy or your choice)


I started with picking out several springy patterns of scrapbook paper.  I used the 8-1/2 x 11″ sized paper.  Then I photocopied the template (found here) on the back of each sheet.   After I went back and read the instructions, they said to use cardstock weight paper, but the regular paper seemed to work just fine.    One night I sat in front of the TV (amusing my husband by watching some documentary he was interested in – ugh!) and cut out all the pieces.  I decided to forgo the tag that says “Happy May Day”, but you can include it if you want.

In about 30 minutes Will and I had all the flowers put together and cones made.  Will attached a Popsicle stick to the back of each flower with a strip of tape.

Next, I put a glue dot on the back of each Hershey Kiss and Will stuck them in the front center of each flower.

See how the regular paper supports the candy — so glad I didn’t have to go buy cardstock!

The rest of the project I completed on my own.  Take each cone pattern piece and glue one edge using a glue stick.  Next, roll the cone to a point on one end and secure the glue.  Last, add the paper handle using your glue stick to attach either end to the opening of the cone.

You can fill the bottom of the cone with candy or tissue paper.  Stick three flowers into each cone.  I found you had to put something in the cone or the sticks don’t stay in very well.



Pic-bit! April 27, 2012

Filed under: Pic-bits — tidbittimes @ 9:05 am

{this moment}

Joining Soule Mama in {this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.



Messenger Style Bag April 25, 2012

Filed under: Crafty Bits — tidbittimes @ 3:40 pm
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Here is another one of my sewing projects as I’m slowly learning how to sew again.  When I saw the tutorial for this bag from Maggie at Smashed Peas and Carrots I knew I had to make one for Will.   A couple of years ago I made him a small bag to carry his trains around for entertainment when we went places like out to eat.  He still loves trains, but has also taken a liking to Cars.  I’ve been wanting to make him a bag to lug around his cars.  This bag also would work well to take to the library to carry books.

He was pretty excited about his new bag, which to his dad’s dismay he calls his purse (what a corny smile, huh).  This is probably because I have a messenger style purse I carry around.  We’ll just go with it for now — I love that he really has no gender specified labels/role quite yet.  In my book it’s okay for him to carry a purse, have a baby doll and watch old episodes of “My Little Pony” and “Care Bears”.

Messenger Style Bag Materials: 

1/2 yd each of two different patterned fabrics (one for the bag and one for the lining)

1 yd of 1-inch belting for the strap

Coordinating Thread

Small bowl or CD


Pinking Sheers

Iron and Ironing Board

This is a pretty quick project.  Maggie says it is a one-hour project.  I would say this for the experienced sewer, but for me it took about twice as long.  Still a quick project to complete in 2 hours!

Constructing the Front Flap

1)  Cut one piece of each fabric to 7 x 13-inches long.

2)  Place right sides together (like above)

3)  Fold the two pieces in half (like a hamburger bun, not a hot dog bun,  as I used to say when I taught)

4) Using a bowl cut off one rounded corner from the unfolded edge.

5)  Open up the flap and sew around the curve of the flap (not the straight edge) at 1/2″ seam allowance.  Using a pinking shears trim the excess fabric around the curve.  Turn the flap right-side out and iron it flat.  Last, sew at 1/4″ seam allowance around the curve of the flap.

Constructing the Body of the Bag

1)  Cut two pieces measuring 14 x 14-inches from each piece of fabric (total 4 squares).  Place the right sides of each fabric together (one set will be your lining and one set will be the outside of your bag).   Sew together the two sides and bottom of the bag using a 1/2-inch seam allowance.  Cut the excess fabric with your pinking shears.

2)  With both sides still wrong-side out, pinch each corner at the bottom of the bag.

Measure down from the tip 1-1/2 inches and sew across.

Cut the excess fabric (tip) off using pinking shears.

You will do this two times each for both the lining and the outside of the bag.

3)  To assemble the bag place the lining piece inside of the outer piece with right sides together.

4)  Place the flap inside the bag so that the outer fabrics face each other and the lining fabrics face each other.

(So sorry I forgot to take a picture of this step)

5)  Measure the belting so it fits your child.  Place it at the side seam of the bag between the outer fabric and the lining.  I copied Maggie’s measurement for the belting since Will is close in age to her little guy.  We measured the belting at 30 inches in length.

6)  Now sew around the top edge of your bag using a 1/2-inch seam allowance.  Be sure that you catch the flap and the belting while going around.  I sewed across the parts with the belting a couple of times to reinforce that area.  Be sure to leave about a 4-inch opening somewhere on the top of the bag so you can turn it right-side out!

7)  Turn your bag right-side out using the 4-inch opening.  Fold the opening in and press with your iron.  Now sew using a 1/4-inch seam allowance around the entire top of the bag.  This also closes the 4-inch opening.

There you go!  A new bag for all things boy!  I may add a piece of velcro to the flap so it stays closed better.  This seems to bother Will.  I’ll get to it one of these days.  Give the project a try, it is quite fun and simple!


Baby Shower Fun April 23, 2012

Filed under: Crafty Bits — tidbittimes @ 3:08 pm
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At the end of March our group of girlfriends hosted a baby shower for our friend and her new baby girl, Jocelyn.  It was a nice afternoon.  I’d like to share with you a few of the crafts we did in preparation for the event.

Paper Baby Shoe Favors

Stork Diaper Bundle

Name Pennant

Paper Baby Shoes

I pinned the idea for the paper baby shoes on Pintrest because I knew that I just had to make these for the next person I knew who was having their first baby.  They are a little labor intensive, but turned out oh, so cute!

You can get step-by-step directions and the template from Clemen’s Designs.


Shoe Template

Scrapbook Paper 8-1/2 x 11″  (fits 2 to a page)




Ribbon for bows


I started by tracing the template on a piece of 8-1/2 x 11 scrapbook paper.  I was able to trace 2 to a sheet.   To save myself time, I just photo copied the template to the remaining papers.  The one thing I didn’t think of is reversing the second copied template to create a left and right shoe.  We ended up having all right foot shoes at the party.  As my good friend, Shawn said, “She’ll be starting out on the right foot, then!”  PERFECT!

Next, the most intensive part of this project is cutting out all the pieces.  See all those notches – ugh!  I was really wishing this template was available on a Cricut cartridge somewhere.  It was a good project to just park yourself in front of the TV and cut, cut, cut.

The next step was assembly.  I’m thankful I had a couple of friends to come over and help me with this part.  Working with friends is always fun!

With each cut out template, fold the notches/flaps inward towards the wrong side of the paper.  Mark the third notch from the end with the long strap piece.  Place a dot of glue on this tab and glue it to the back middle of the heel.  Continue gluing the tabs down to the sole of the shoe until you are done.  IMPORTANT:  if you don’t start gluing  with the correct tab your shoe will not look right.  As my friend, Emily said, “It sort of looks like this one belongs to someone with Club Foot.”  When you have the shoe attached to the sole finish it off by gluing the side of the strap to the side of the shoe and pull the strap across the shoe and glue.

Last, add the fun details.  We added a pink button to the strap and a black and white ribbon/bow to the front of each shoe.    You can fill the shoe with just about anything.  We used peanuts and M&Ms.  These were a big hit at the shower.


Stork Diaper Bundle


Big thank you to Jen for making the Stork Diaper Bundle.  The idea came from a post on Pintrest by Cricut.  There aren’t many instructions on how to make this, but it is pretty self explanatory, I think.   The stork and congratulations bubble are cut from the “New Arrivals” Cricut cartridge (I borrowed from my friend, Kellie — thanks!).  A new mom can always use lots and lots of diapers!


Name Pennant

I made the name pennant using the Close To My Heart Art Philosophy Cricut cartridge.  I cut each pennant out of the same paper that I used for the paper baby shoes.  I tied them together with black and white polka dot ribbon.  Next, I cut the letters out of black and white paper using the “Plantin’ Schoolbook” cartridge (I think).   Last, I added black and white paper flowers as accents.  We attached the pennant to the table-cloth using safety pins.


I think Jocelyn enjoyed her special day!


Pic-bit! April 20, 2012

Filed under: Pic-bits — tidbittimes @ 9:27 am

{this moment}

Joining Soule Mama in {this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.



April 19, 2012

Filed under: Crafty Bits — tidbittimes @ 2:21 pm
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I had several reasons for tackling this craft project.

1) I wanted to learn how to use my “new to me” sewing machine.

2) I wanted to make a more springy coffee cuff for my co-workers.

3)  It looked like fun!


Turns out I met all 3 goals for this project!  I was pretty proud of myself for figuring out the sewing machine with the combined help of my 9th grade home ec. experiences and the sewing machine’s user manual.  Not that is was a speedy process, but successful no less.


I found this idea quite a while ago on Pintrest (of course).  Pintrest led me to the blog Love 2 Create.  Here I found wonderful step-by-step instructions on how to make these coffee cuffs/cozies.

Here are the materials you’ll need:

 2 different fabric designs

Quilting batting

Coordinating thread

2 buttons per coffee cuff

one thin hairband

a coffee cuff from your local coffee shop to use as a template


After I shopped for all the supplies, I had to send my husband to the local bagel shop to pick up some Saturday morning bagels and coffee so I could get my coffee cuff template to use to make this craft.  Win – Win for me!


Using a fabric pencil trace an opened coffee cuff onto the wrong side of one of the fabric pieces.   Cut out the fabric 1/4″ from your drawn line.

 Lay the first cut out piece on the second design of fabric, trace and cut.

Then use one of the piece of fabric to cut a third piece out of a thin layer of quilting batting.


Next, pin all three pieces together in this order

  1.   fabric with markings (wrong side up)
  2.  fabric right side up
  3.  thin batting piece

Place a hairband between the two layers of fabric.  Make sure the fused end of the hairband is hanging outside the fabric.  (I see from my picture I have it backwards.)  Flip the top layer of fabric over the hairband and secure the hairband with two pins.  Continue to pin the rest of the fabric in place to get ready to sew it.

Be sure to mark a 2-inch opening with pins so that you are able to turn the fabric right-side out when you are done.  Using your markings as a guide sew around the whole cuff, but do not sew the 2-inch opening you marked off.  Sew over the part with the hairband a couple times to make sure it is very secure.

Cut off the corners at each end of the coffee cuff.

Also, cut off the end of the hairband that is sticking out.

Turn your fabric right-side out through the 2-inch opening and press with an iron.  Last, sew a straight stitch across the 2-inch opening.

Place your cuff around the coffee cup you will be using it for and pull the hairband to the place you wish to place the button.  Mark this spot with a pin.

Hold buttons on either side of the cuff and make two stitches to secure the button.  Next, slip a toothpick through the buttons on both sides to give it a little wiggle room.  Finish sewing on the buttons.

You are done and can enjoy a nice cup of coffee or give it as a gift!

Since I had given my co-workers cups with a winter cuff (see here), I made cardboard coffee cups with the new cuff wrapped around it.


A Tu-Tu Table Skirt for Little Miss Baby Girl! April 17, 2012

Filed under: Crafty Bits — tidbittimes @ 2:46 pm
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When I saw the idea for this tulle table skirt on Pintrest, I just knew I had to make if for our baby’s nursery.  We are so excited to be expecting a baby girl in early June!  I’ve gone a little “pink crazy”!  One afternoon my mother-in-law came over and helped me put this tu-tu table skirt together.  It was a quick and fun project.

I bought the pink feather lamp at Hobby Lobby — had to have it!!!


We followed the directions to make this tu-tu table skirt from eHow.  They were great instructions.


The table came from a local thrift shop.  My mother-in-law painted it a pale pink (Poetic Princess) the same color the walls in the nursery are painted.  She also had a spare round glass left over from a rummage that we set on top of the table.


4 spools of 6″ pink tulle

1 Spool of pink flowered ribbon

Piece of 1/2″ elastic

Needle and Thread

Small nails


Stick Pins



1)  Measure the perimeter of the table and then subtract 3 inches to cut the correct length of elastic.

2)  Join the ends of the elastic together and sew them together to secure.

3)  Next, measure the distance from the edge of the table to the floor.  Multiply this measurement by 2 and cut your tulle strips to this length.  In our case we cut the strips at 50 inches each.

4)  Fold one of the strips in half and make a loop at the folded section.  Hold it against the elastic and place the ends through the loop and pull tight.  This will make a slipknot.  Repeat this with each piece of tulle pulling the knots close together until you’ve gone all around the table.

5)  Put the skirt around the table and secure it into place by hammering nails into the side of the wooden table.  We first tried pushpins, but they showed through.

6)  Last, tie the flowered ribbon around the table covering the elastic with the tulle knots.  I secured the ribbon with stick pins.  I may eventually go back and stitch the ribbon to the elastic so I don’t have to worry about little hands getting poked with pins.

The pictures really don’t even show how full this skirt is.  It is even cuter in person!  I hope our little princess will like it.  I do have visions of little hands yanking on the tulle strips and little people hiding under this table.  It will be cute until she is mobile anyway!


Pic-bit! April 13, 2012

Filed under: Pic-bits — tidbittimes @ 2:05 pm

{this moment}

Joining Soule Mama in {this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week (or in this case last week). A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.



Spiderman Birthday Party ~ Part 3 ~ Cake and Cookies! April 11, 2012

Filed under: Tasty Bits — tidbittimes @ 1:59 pm
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I spent quite a bit of time on the cakes and cookies for Will’s Spiderman party (although it was much easier than last year’s big Thomas cake).  I really enjoy the challenge of cake and cookie decorating!  When I saw the Spiderman cookies on Pintrest and looked further at the directions, I knew I needed to give them a try.  I thought they would make great party favors.

I found the idea and tutorial for making these fabulous cookies on The Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle.  She gives great instructions!  I also used a recipe I found on Pintrest (Authentic Suburban Gourmet) that mimics the Lofthouse Sugar Cookies (which both Will and I LOVE).  To cut out Spiderman head cookies I used an upside down Easter egg cookie cutter (pictured in a previous blog post) — clever, huh.

Lofthouse Style Frosted Sugar Cookies (from Authentic Suburban Gourmet)


6 cups all purpose flour
1 t. baking soda
1 t. baking powder
1 c. butter, at room temperature
2 c. granulated sugar
3 eggs
2 t. vanilla extract
1 1/2 c. sour cream


1 c. butter, room temperature
1 t. vanilla extract
4 c. powdered sugar
6 T. heavy cream
Several drops food coloring
Multi-colored Sprinkles


In the bowl of a stand mixer with the flat beater attached, cream the butter and granulated sugar at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the eggs, one at a time beating until each is incorporated. Add the vanilla and sour cream and beat at low speed until combined.

Add the dry ingredients and beat at low speed until just combined, scraping down the bowl as needed. Dough will be a bit “sticky”. Divide dough into two sections. Flatten into rectangles about 1 1/2 inches thick, then wrap with plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator overnight or at least two hours until firm.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or spray them with nonstick cooking spray, set aside.

Use the plastic wrap that you chilled the dough in. Dust the top of the dough and then flip and flour the other side, keeping it on the plastic wrap. With a rolling pin, roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness. Using a 2 1/2-inch round cookie cutter, cut out circles and transfer to a baking sheet. Bake for 7 minutes, until pale golden. Immediately transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool. Best to work in small batches while keeping the remainder of the dough chilled.

To make the frosting, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and vanilla. Slowly beat in the powdered sugar. Once smooth and creamy, add in heavy cream, 1 tablespoon at a time until the desired spreading consistency is achieved. If desired, add food coloring and beat until combined.

Once cookies have cooled completely, frost and add sprinkles. Allow frosting to set, then store in an air-tight container. Let cookies sit for several hours before serving to allow the flavors to develop.

Makes approximately: 5 to 6 dozen cookies (will vary on the thickness of the dough)

On my first trial I used frosting to make the webbing on the face.  This looked great until the next day when the black frosting had bled into the red frosting.  Poor Spiderman didn’t look so good.  I then went on the search for cake decorating pens like Sugarbelle mentioned in her tutorial and found some at the local baking supply shop.


Here are the step-by-step instructions on how to make the webbing on Spiderman’s face.  Very simple when you see it one step at a time.


Here Will is pictured holding Trial #1 of the cookies using frosting, but it shows the eyes close up.  I used black frosting to outline the eye shape first and then filled it in with white frosting.



I kept the cakes fairly simple this year after tackling Thomas last year!  I borrowed a Wilton Spiderman pan from my friend, Sandy.  After seeing the guest list I decided I needed more cake so I made a Spiderman head from a layered round cake.

I just followed the instructions to frost the cake from the Wilton pan.  It was pretty  easy although the design from the pan didn’t make a very clear impression on the cake, so I had to get a little creative.   I also had a little cake casualty when I removed it from the pan.  My advice, always wait until the cake has cooled before removing it from the pan.  I was able to piece it together and then make an emergency call to my mom and used her suggestion of freezing it together before frosting it.  It worked!

 The instructions suggested doing all the outlining before filling it in with red stars.  I tested it out first on one foot and I was surprised at how well that method worked (who am I to challenge Wilton, I guess).  The decorating went pretty smoothly and even resembled Spiderman when I was done!

 For the layer cake I baked two round cakes and then stacked them with frosting in between.  For the face pattern I just used the same method I had used to decorate the cookies.  It was super fast and easy!  There was even enough cake to go around!

I hope you have enjoyed seeing the process of creating a Spiderman party for my sweet Will!  I had so much fun and was exhausted following the party.  It was all worth it though!


Pic-bit! April 6, 2012

Filed under: Pic-bits,Uncategorized — tidbittimes @ 4:42 pm

{this moment}

Joining Soule Mama in {this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week (or in this case last week). A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.



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