March Foodie Pen Pal

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My foodie pen pal for March is Colleen from CRichmanFreebies!

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What Collen sent me:
Heart-shaped pasta
Apple Butter
Soy milk
Vanilla balsamic vinegar

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I love soy milk.  I have it in my coffee every morning.  Delicious!

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I am so intrigued by this vanilla bean balsamic vinegar!  Colleen recommended drizzling it over fruit.  Sounds so interesting!

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This apple butter is nice and thick and spreads easily on toast.  You can smell the cinnamon as soon as you open the jar.  Yum!

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The heart-shaped pasta is so fun.  I added creamy marinara for a tasty lunch.

Wanna join Foodie Pen Pals and exchange foods with another blogger?  Join now at The Lean Green Bean.

 

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5 Minute Craft-Flower Envelope and File Folder

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I needed a new envelope to store my receipts and a new file folder to hold my paperwork, but I didn’t want boring ones, so I decorated them with flowers!  You can make your flowers any color that you want and can use any arrangement that takes your fancy.  This craft is so quick and easy.  It’s perfect for spring!

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Materials:

Card stock, any color
Flower punch
Hole punch
Paper fasteners
Ruler & pencil (optional)
File folders
Envelopes

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Punch out flowers in card stock.  Punch out the center of the flower with a hole punch.

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If you want your flowers to be evenly spaced, measure and mark with a pencil.

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Push fastener through the envelope (or file folder) on the pencil mark.

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Attach flower and fastener to envelope or file folder.

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Flatten back of fastener to secure to paper.

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That’s it.  It’s that easy!  Repeat this process until your boring office supplies are beautifully decorated!

Miniature Cinnamon Bread

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I came across this recipe for whole wheat cinnamon swirl bread from eat, live, run.  BUT instead of making one big loaf, I made three miniature ones!  I followed Jenna’s recipe except at the very end I omitted the egg coating on the top because I don’t like crispy crusts.

Jenna’s recipe from eat, live, run:

1/2 cup warm milk
1/2 cup warm water
1 (1/4th oz) package yeast
1/2 cup sugar + 1 tbsp
6 Tbsp softened butter (or earth balance buttery spread), divided
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 cups all purpose flour
1.5 Tbsp cinnamon, divided
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 egg + 2 Tbsp warm water (optional)

I recommend following Jenna’s instructions here.  Her blog post is detailed with many wonderful photographs.

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This is what my dough looked like after I kneaded it for 10 minutes.  Now I know what I’m gonna add to my wish list: a Kitchen Aid standing mixer!

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Put your dough in a greased bowl, cover, and let rise for 1.5 hours.

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This is what it looked like after an hour and a half.

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Grease bread pans.

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Take out some of the dough and roll out into a thin rectangle.  Trim with a knife if necessary. Cover with cinnamon mixture.

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Roll tightly and place in pans.  Repeat two more times to fill 3 miniature pans.

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Roll out leftover dough and make into a larger loaf.  It doesn’t really matter much what this looks like.  The mini loaves are the stars of the show.

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Cover loaves and let rise for an hour.

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After an hour cook for 40 minutes at 350F.  Your house will smell wonderful!

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Let cool then slice and enjoy.  Yummy!!!

DIY Pom Pom Cat Toy

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The Clover pom pom maker is a great tool for making pom poms and what a perfect toy for cats!  Tie a string around the pom pom and you can dangle it for your cat for hours of fun with your favorite feline friend!

Materials:

Clover pom pom maker
yarn, any color
string to secure and hang, any color
thread scissors

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The clover pom pom maker comes in several sizes and can be purchased at your local craft store.  I got the large pom pom maker from Michael’s with my 40% off coupon.

The package comes with detailed instructions, but you can follow my directions if you want to see how the pom pom maker works before buying it.

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The pom pom maker comes apart into two pieces.

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To make a pom pom, put the two pieces together and line them up.

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Next, open two of the arcs.

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Wrap yarn around the arcs.

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Attach yarn to maker using a simple loop knot.

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Wrap yarn tightly around arc.

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Continue until the entire arc is covered with yarn.

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Trim yarn with several spare inches.

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Tie yarn into a knot to secure.

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Repeat on the other side.

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Cut yarn right down the middle of the arc.

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Be careful not to move the pom pom maker too much after you’ve cut the yarn.  It’s loose at this point.

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Wrap a piece of strong thread around the middle.

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Tie a knot in the thread and pull tight.

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Tie the other way to make a square knot.

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Make sure you pull the string as tight as you can.  If the string is loose, yarn could fall out of the pom pom.

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Trim the string.

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Lift arc on each side.

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Remove one side of the maker and lift off pom pom.

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Tuck the end of the hanging string under the pom pom string.

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Tie in a double knot.

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Fluff yarn into a ball and trim off stray pieces.

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Caprese Scrambled Eggs

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Have you ever had insalata caprese?  It’s a salad of tomato, mozzarella, and basil that’s typically served as an appetizer.  This recipe takes the basic ingredients of a caprese salad and adds them to scrambled eggs!  Yum!

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Spray pan with cooking spray.

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Add chopped tomatoes and cook on high for 2 minutes.

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Stir and turn heat down to medium-low.

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Put eggs in a bowl and mix with a fork.

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Pour eggs into the pan.

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Add mozzarella.

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Mix well.

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Add basil and remove from heat.

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Mix well and serve immediately.

DIY Grow Letters

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This fun craft is perfect for spring!  Choose chunky wooden letters that stand upright and you can put them anywhere!

Materials:

Wooden letter cutouts (mine were from the bargain bins at Michael’s)
Green spray paint (or a contrasting color)
Drop cloth
Newspaper
Elmer’s Glue-All
Sponge
Decorative moss
Scissors
Paper flowers in a variety of sizes, any color

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Prepare your area for spray paint and set out the letters.  Remember to remove the labels before painting.

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Spray the side and top of letters with paint.  Be sure to follow the directions on the can.

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Check and see if paint is dry and turn over letters.  You may wish to put down a new piece of plastic.

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Spray the back of the letters and leave to dry.

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While paint is drying, prepare your moss.

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Cut up moss into smaller pieces.

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Continue to cut up moss until it’s nice and small.

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When letters are completely dry, set them out on newspaper.

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Get your moss, glue, and sponge.

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Add glue to sponge.

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Apply an even coat of glue to the top of one of the letters.

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Put letter into the cut up moss and press down firmly.

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Continue to glue and add moss to each letter.

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Don’t worry if the moss looks messy at this point.  You with trim it up when the glue dries.

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Now it’s time to attach the flowers.  I recommend setting them up before gluing.

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Put glue on the back of the flowers.

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Press firmly to secure to moss.

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Continue to glue on all of the flowers.

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Leave to dry for several hours.

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Trim off all the messy moss edges.

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Now find a nice place to display your letters.