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4 INGREDIENT NO BAKE BIRDS NEST COOKIES

4 INGREDIENT NO BAKE BIRDS NEST COOKIES

It’s officially spring, who else is excited?  I’m sharing one of our favorite family springtime treats that we make every year around the Easter season: birds nest no bake cookies!  One year when my girls were little I made these adorable treats and ever since then they can’t have an Easter without them.  They are now 17 and 19 and still ask for them and get excited when I make them, and they still have fun helping me shape each nest.

These springtime treats are the perfect festive treat and they’re so easy to make!  Just 4 ingredients, a microwave, and some wax or parchment paper.  It’s that easy and really fun making each nest!

In a large microwave safe bowl melt chocolate chips and butterscotch chips every 30 seconds, stirring in between until they’re completely melted.  Take care not to microwave them too long so they don’t burn.  Once melted stir until smooth, toss in the chow mein noodles, and mix until blended.  Spoon onto wax or parchment paper and shape into a nest.  Top with candy, let them firm up, and you have the cutest treats!

Easy to make Easter treats

4 Ingredient NO BAKE Birds Nest Cookies

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 12 ounces butterscotch chips
  • 12 ounces chow mein noodles
  • small candy eggs for decorating
  • wax or parchment paper

Instructions

  • Place the chocolate chips and butterscotch chips in a large microwave safe bowl.
  • Microwave in 30 second increments, stirrring each time until melted.
  • Stir until smooth and add chow main noodles, stirring until blended.
  • Spoon onto wax or parchment paper, shaping the nest, creating a slight low spot in the center to hold the eggs.
  • Add candy eggs to the center and let set until firm.

Our favorite candies to use are Cadberry candy coated mini eggs, Robin eggs, jelly beans, and Peep marshmallow birds.  Not only are these Easter time treats easy and fun to make, they taste delicious too!   Be sure to follow me on Instagram for my latest seasonal content!  Wishing you a Happy Easter blog friends!

VALENTINE’S DAY TABLESCAPE

VALENTINE’S DAY TABLESCAPE

Valentine's Day tablescape idea

Decorating for Valentine’s Day is always a dream for me.  The roses, the hearts, and all the pink and red… I really can’t get enough.   Having a well dressed table is always important to me during any holiday.  It sets the mood and brings the family together in a fun and festive way.

Today I’m sharing with you this simple Valentine’s Day tablescape that you can put together in minutes.

Heart candy tablescape

SUPPLIES NEEDED

  • A platter of some sort
  • Vase
  • Roses, red or pink
  • Water and scissors for the flowers
  • Valentine’s Day themed candy
  • Valentine’s Day Decor, bowls, cards, anything really
  • Coordinating Pink, red, or white plates and napkins

Valentine's Day tablescape idea

Start by arranging the flowers in a vase.  I find a rubber band is excellent for keeping flowers together when you’re using a narrow vase.  No worries, if you cut a stem too short you can easily adjust it with the rubber band.  Plus it’s much easier to change out the water using the rubber band method.  If your vase is clear you can cover the rubber band with twine or ribbon instead.  This is optional though.

Easy Valentines Day Centerpiece

Add the vase and any decorative objects you’re using to the platter.  Fill the surrounding area with candy of your choice.  Take care there is no water outside the vase that would cause the candy to bleed.

Valentines Day table

Now it’s time to set the table, so break out all those pink, white, and red dishes.  I’m using my everyday white dishes paired with Le Crueset heart dishes.  I bought them last year and as of now they’re unavailable, but hopefully they’ll make a return next year.  You can still find some heart items on their website and don’t forget about Ebay.  Um… I may or may not stay up into the wee hours of the night looking for retired Le Creuset items on Ebay.

Sniff… the napkins were Pier One.  RIP.  The vase was a find from Safeway, I’ve yet to find one like this online.  If you live near a Safeway or sister grocery store check the floral section.  I’m on a roll here, nothing is available!  Haha… but all you need is just some V-Day inspo right?

Red and white Valentines Day table

Below are some Valentine’s Day themed items still available so you can set your own fabulous V-Day table.

Valentine's Day tablescape idea

Currently Le Crueset is offering free heart shaped ramekins with a $200 purchase, and Martha Stewart also makes a beautiful set.

Le Crueset heart dishes

Remember Ebay when your looking for retired or out of stock heart Le Crueset!

Valentine's Day tablescape idea

Red makes my heart sing for Valentine’s Day, but what about a pretty pink and white theme?  Pink roses and conversation hearts with pink and white dishes?  Oh my… I may just be doing that next year.

Where to find retired Le Crueset

This tablescape so cute and quick to put together.  What are you going to do with all that extra time?  Eat chocolate of course!

SIMPLE & EASY DIY NEW YEARS EVE DECORATIONS

SIMPLE & EASY DIY NEW YEARS EVE DECORATIONS

Easy to make New Year's Eve Decorations

If there’s ever a year to celebrate ending it’s this one!  Goodbye 2020… we won’t miss ya, but your departure certainly calls for a celebration!  I always go big when it comes to Christmas so afterwards I’m pretty tired and need things simple, but that doesn’t mean we can’t still have a little fun.

This year I decided to create a festive table centerpiece as well as some drink swizzle sticks that everyone can enjoy, and these simple and easy New Years Eve decorations can be thrown together at a moment’s notice.  It’s a fun way to add some extra cheer while ringing in the New Year at home.  I was able to recycle some of my Christmas items into our centerpiece so hopefully you have some extra stuff hanging around too.

Easy to make New Year's Eve Decorations

Easy to make New Year's Eve Decorations

SUPPLIES NEEDED

Easy to make New Year's Eve Decorations

  • Metallic shred or tinsel
  • Beaded necklaces or garland
  • Party crackers
  • Ornament balls
  • Curly ribbon
  • Wood Skewers (I used 8 inch ones from the craft baking aisle)
  • Pom poms
  • A bowl or platter for the centerpiece
  • Festive glassware

Easy to make New Year's Eve Decorations

INSTRUTIONS

For the centerpiece start by placing a layer of metallic shred and then add the rest of the decorations.  Use any leftover metallic shreds as need to fill in gaps or add height.

For the drink swizzle sticks simply push each pom pom through the pointy end of the wood skewer, and adjust as needed.  No glue is necessary.

Easy to make New Year's Eve Decorations

So fun, so festive, and so easy am I right?

Easy to make New Year's Eve Decorations

Easy to make New Year's Eve Decorations

Easy to make New Year's Eve Decorations

Let the celebration begin!  We’ve got this… just a few more days and we all get a fresh start.  Happy New Year my friends, 2021 is going to be a much better year for all of us.  Stay safe, healthy, and happy.

HOW TO MAKE A GIFT BAG OUT OF WRAPPING PAPER

HOW TO MAKE A GIFT BAG OUT OF WRAPPING PAPER

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

I want to share with you my favorite gift wrapping hack, how to make a gift bag out of wrapping paper.  So you might be thinking, isn’t it easier to just buy a gift bag?  Well… maybe… but we’ve all had those moments where we run out of gift bags, or they’re the wrong size, or you just want to save money.   Maybe you just want all your presents to match and coordinate – Virgo here!!

Seriously, this trick is life changing and couldn’t be easier.  Once you make your first bag you’ll be whipping these out at warp speed.  It’s also lots of fun to customize each bag, and you can even add a handle if desired.  Below I’ll show you how easy it is to make a gift bag out of wrapping paper, and be sure to read my helpful tips.

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

SUPPLIES

  • Wrapping paper
  • Tape
  • Scissors
  • Stapler – optional
  • Ribbon for decorating – optional
  • Tulle ribbon to create a handle – optional

INSTRUCTIONS

Measure wrapping paper to the size of the object, as if you were wrapping the present without a box, leaving extra room at the top and cut.

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

Fold one side in and crease, repeat on the other side, then tape the back shut.

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

Fold the bottom edge straight up and crease, this will determine the width of the bag.

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

Unfold the bottom and then fold the side edges inward to resemble a triangle, crease both sides.

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

Fold each end up like you’re wrapping the end of a boxed present and secure well with tape, then gently open the bag up.

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

Place the gift in the bag then fold the top of the bag down.  Seal the top of the bag with tape or staples.

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

If you’re not adding a handle simply add a bow and you’re all done.

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

To add a handle after the bag is sealed use a hole punch to thread tulle through.  I used a punch that was slightly larger than normal to make this step easier.

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

Determine the length you want the handles to be and tie a knot.  Adjust the handles so the knot goes to one side and tie in a bow.  You can experiment with different ribbons for a handle, I like tulle because it’s lightweight and fluffy.

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

TIPS

  • Thick sturdy wrapping paper is best, thin wrapping paper from a dollar store may not work as well.
  • You can cut a cardboard base for the inside if you want your bag to have more structure.
  • Pay close attention when using wrapping paper where the pattern goes one direction, as in the picture above, you’ll want the pattern facing up.
  • Only add a handle to lightweight presents or the bag will tear.
  • If you have lots of gifts that are similar in size, make several bags at once, keeping them flat for easy storage.  When your ready to wrap a gift simply open up the bag and seal it.

Make a gift bag out of wrapping paper

I hope this gift wrapping hack helps you!  I’m officially signing off to enjoy this week of Christmas with my family.  Wishing you the Merriest Christmas and a Happy New Year!

HOW TO FOLD A NAPKIN INTO A CHRISTMAS TREE

HOW TO FOLD A NAPKIN INTO A CHRISTMAS TREE

How to make Christmas tree napkins

I love a good folded napkin, yes, I am a proud napkin nerd.  Nothing makes a table special like a well folded napkin, and today I want to share with you how easy it is to fold a napkin into a Christmas tree.  To make these Christmas tree shaped napkins you’ll need a square napkin, my favorite napkins are from World Market, they wash well, come in lots of colors, and are very affordable.  I chose green but other colors and patterns would work great too.

How to make Christmas tree napkins

Start by folding the napkin into a square, and rotate the napkin so the ends are facing you.

How to make Christmas tree napkins

Begin folding each napkin layer up, leaving a small border and keeping the points of the napkin lined up.

How to make Christmas tree napkins

Continue folding until all the layers are folded up.  Tip:  Any time I fold napkins I always keep an iron nearby and press every few steps to keep things nice and uniform.  This is totally optional though.

How to make Christmas tree napkins

Carefully flip the napkin over and fold the right end across to the left side of the napkin, creating a point at the bottom.

How to make Christmas tree napkins

Repeat by bringing the left end of the napkin towards the right so both edges create a nice point.  Take the top triangle end of the napkin and tuck it in under a layer.

How to make Christmas tree napkins

Turn the napkin over and tuck each corner either up or down, depending on the look you like best.  Repeat all the way down.

How to make Christmas tree napkins

Once finished I like to give the napkin a quick press with the iron, again optional.

These festive Christmas trees are sure to impress your guests!  You can even add a star at the top of the tree to write your guests’ names out of paper or salt dough.  Be sure to check out my other Christmas blog posts, and next I’ll be sharing my favorite present wrapping hack with you, it’s life changing!

THE ULTIMATE NAUGHTY & NICE HOT COCOA BAR

THE ULTIMATE NAUGHTY & NICE HOT COCOA BAR

The ultimate Naughty & Nice Hot Cocoa Bar

It’s the Christmas season and we love nothing more than to celebrate the festivities with a perfect cup of hot cocoa!  Nothing says holiday cheer like a readily available cup of delicious cocoa, am I right?  l’m always looking for fun ways to celebrate the season with my family, and this year we’ve decided to add a hot cocoa bar to our seasonal fun, but not just any hot cocoa bar, a naughty and nice one!

The ultimate Naughty & Nice Hot Cocoa Bar

The ultimate Naughty & Nice Hot Cocoa Bar

There are many ways you can serve cocoa at your own bar.  I love keeping a thermos of ready-made cocoa on weekends and during Christmas festivities.  If that doesn’t work you can keep hot water in a thermos or air-pot along with cocoa mix on the side.

The real treat is with the naughty and nice additions!  With just a few yummy treats you can turn your ordinary cocoa extra chocolatey, or add caramel, butterscotch, peppermint, or have a spiked naughty treat.  There is something for everyone at this naughty and nice cocoa bar, and let’s not forget the perfect cup of cocoa might need a few treats like cookies for dipping too.

I used a variety of mason jars I had on hand to hold all our cocoa treats and just spoon them into cups as needed.  Then at the end of the night I put the lids back on the treats and they’re ready for a new day.

The ultimate Naughty & Nice Hot Cocoa Bar

Below I’ll share with you my favorite cocoa mixers to create your own naughty and nice cocoa bar, but really the sky’s the limit when adding delicious treats.

The ultimate Naughty & Nice Hot Cocoa Bar

Supplies

The ultimate Naughty & Nice Hot Cocoa Bar

  • Hot cocoa – I love the Hershey’s cocoa recipe, Alton Brown has good cocoa recipe too.
  • A thermos, air-pot or slow cooker to keep the cocoa nice and hot
  • Cups or mugs
  • Napkins
  • Place cards or labels
  • Small jars or containers of your choice
  • Spoons for stirring in naughty and nice treats
  • Paper shreds and ribbon to decorate with (optional)

Naughty

The ultimate Naughty & Nice Hot Cocoa Bar

  • Kahlua
  • Bailey’s Irish Cream
  • Maker’s Mark Whiskey
  • Jamesons Whiskey
  • Smirnoff Peppermint Vodka
  • Smirnoff Caramel Vodka
  • Smirnoff Whipped Cream Vodka

Nice

The ultimate Naughty & Nice Hot Cocoa Bar

  • Candy Canes
  • Marshmallows
  • Chocolate Chips
  • Butterscotch Chips
  • Carmel Bits
  • Toffee Bits

Snacks

The ultimate Naughty & Nice Hot Cocoa Bar

  • Pirouette Cookies
  • Gingerbread Cookies
  • Candy

The ultimate Naughty & Nice Hot Cocoa Bar

The ultimate Naughty & Nice Hot Cocoa Bar

Creating your own hot cocoa bar is just so fun!  Who can resist all the yummy flavors and treats?  It’s the perfect way to boost your hot cocoa game for parties, gatherings, or just yourself.  Our family has officially voted for a naughty and nice cocoa bar every year.

It’s the perfect way to celebrate the season, and remember you can be all naughty, all nice, or a little bit of both!