Browse Category: Holidays & Celebrations

Ideas for holidays, fun days, celebrations, recipes, fun food, parties & gift ideas

Glitter & Jewel Easter Eggs

Sharing a picture of these glittered & jewelled Easter eggs my daughter made a few years ago with my step-mother.  I am amazed that these delicate eggs are still in good condition. These are blown out eggs that were dyed and then decorated with glitter glue & craft jewels. I’ve put them in a pretty crystal bowl for our table decoration.

If you’ve never blown out an egg,  check out a tutorial on Pinterest.  These are great for older kids, especially if the novelty of hard boiled eggs is gone. I remember making Easter Egg Trees as a kid using these hollowed eggs. They’re quite a bit sturdier than you’d expect (although you still need a gentle hand).

 

Wine & Chocolate Pairings for Valentine’s Day

Today, our friends at Four Fathers Wines share some ideas about wine & chocolate.

When you think of Valentine’s Day, what comes to mind? Flowers, wine & chocolate, right? Many times, people will pick up their favorite wine & grab a box of chocolate or maybe some chocolate covered strawberries. Then, when it’s time to enjoy, something tastes off. Either the wine doesn’t taste like much or you get a bitter taste. It won’t ruin your Valentine’s Day, but a little switch might help. We are not wine snobs at Four Fathers, but we do want to help you pick out a wine that’s right for your chocolate.

Generally, the rule of thumb is the darker the chocolate, the darker the wine. It’s all about the intensity – a lighter red or a white won’t taste like much with an intense chocolate flavor. Let’s look at some pairings.

White Chocolate  – light & sweet vanilla will go nicely with a Moscato, Rose, Riesling or a fruity Chardonnay

Milk Chocolate – Pretty sweet, try this chocolate with Merlot, Pinot Noir, Port or even a Riesling.

Dark Chocolate – For one less than 70%, you can try a more intense wine like Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel, Pinot Noir & Chianti

Bittersweet Chocolate – These 70% – 100% dark chocolates have become more popular recently. A Shiraz, Malbec or Bordeaux would go well here.

Filled, Flavored & Coated –  So many options here, it will depend on the sweetness of the candy & the intensity of the chocolate. For example, try a caramel filled milk chocolate with Pinot Noir or mint dark chocolate with a Zinfandel or Cab Sav.

Champagnes and sparkling wines all go well with chocolate, too.

Of course, these are just some ideas to start out the wine & chocolate pairings. It really all comes down to your personal preference.  Tell us what some of your favorite pairings are in the comments below.

For more info about the “science” behind the pairings, check this out – Wine & Chocolate – 8 Things You Didn’t Know . It’s one of the best non-wine snob articles I’ve seen on the subject.

Enjoy!

New Year’s Eve Traditions

The last day of the year – time to say goodbye to 2016 and greet 2017. Generally, it’s a night of celebration & reflection as people around the world hope for health & happiness in the coming year.

Here is a quick round-up of traditions from around the world and the stories behind them. Perhaps some of your family traditions are rooted in your culture or you have adopted ideas throughout the years. Maybe there are some new ones you want to add to your New Year celebration.

 

http://www.viralnova.com/new-year-superstitions/

 

 

http://www.almanac.com/content/new-year-traditions-around-world

 

This one includes more cultures & traditions

New Year Traditions around the World

Some fun new ideas to add to your family celebration

18 New Year’s Eve Traditions You Won’t Want to Miss

 

Most of all, from our house to yours – may 2017 bring you peace, prosperity & happiness!

Gift Ideas for Pre-teen boys

preteen-boys-giftsPre-teen boys can be hard to shop for presents. They are at the end of the toy stage but not ready for young adult gifts. I’ve put together a list of some of my favorite gift ideas that are under $25.

 

 

Wireless Speakers

Wireless Speakers

A great option for kids with cell phones or ipod/mp3 player. There’s all kinds of cool speakers that hook up easily to most devices – waterproof for the shower, keychain sized and ones that have lights or water that dance to the beat.

 

 

Virtual Reality Headset for smartphones

Virtual Reality Headset

One of the hottest new items out there right now! Granted, the under $25 price tag may not get you the best quality, but the reviews are pretty good for this model. It’s definitely worth a try.

 

 

 

Legos & Building Sets

How can you go wrong with a building set?? There are so many options out there! The pre-teen may like to try something more challenging like building a roller coaster or a race car alongside the Lego City, Star Wars or Minecraft sets they know & love.  Here are a few options under or
around $25.   K’nex Roller Coaster  Lego Star Wars    Lego Minecraft  Lego Creator  Lego Technic

 

 

Science!  

How about a Microscope set  with some premade slides and blank slides for checking out stuff up close.  Or go for something disgusting like this  Disgusting Science Kit

My boys loved this and the Dr. Dreadful gross science set. I couldn’t find the Dr. Dreadful – they probably don’t make it anymore, but it was crazy!

Illusions

One year, my boys got each other goofy pranks. What fun they had with the classic whoopie cushion on unsuspecting folks! The store Five Below had a whole section of  Pranks.

This was also the year my boys became more interested in card tricks & magic tricks.We had a Cris Angel set that was pretty advanced and didn’t get around to several of the illusions. This Magic Kit  looks like a good starter kit. 

 

 

 

 


NERF

 

You probably already know some great Nerf products. There are tons to choose from in a decent price range.  These are 2 new ones I found recently that I thought would be good additions to the Nerf arsenal we have in our basement  – Nerf Target Set   and   Nerf Star Wars Chewbacca
Bow
 

 

 

What extra hour of sleep?

What extra hour of sleep?
What extra hour of sleep?

Happy Fall! Free printable

Happy Fall!

There are so many things to love about fall! The colors, the scents, the cool, crisp air, fun fall activities and pumpkin flavored everything! To celebrate the first day of fall, I have created this free printable for you. It has been created in 8×10 .jpg format. I printed one on white cardstock & put it in a simple frame to add to my decorations.

Free Fall Printable

What are your favorite things about fall?

5 Reasons to Have Breakfast for Dinner

breakfast1. It’s Fun!

We started out having breakfast for dinner once in awhile when my husband wasn’t going to be home. The kids thought it was great. Then, we’d have it for April Fool’s Day or a Backwards Day, where we have dinner foods for breakfast and breakfast foods for dinner. It is still something the kids will ask for and I look forward to making.

2. Inexpensive

Breakfast for Dinner can be inexpensive, especially compared to the price of meats. There are many breakfast ideas that use common ingredients that you probably have in the house already. Eggs, flour, potatoes, fruits, veggies are just a few options that are healthy, affordable and can make a wide variety of meals. It’s also cheaper than fast food!

3. Quick & Easy…or Not!

Most of my go-to breakfast dishes can be put on the table in much less than a half hour. Then again, this might be the perfect time to try one of those recipes you’ve saved to make “someday”. Mornings can be hectic or maybe you’ve just been too tired to try something new or adventurous when you’re first waking up. Try it for dinner!

4. Health Benefits

Some people like to have a lighter dinner for health reasons. There are many light options for dinners that can be filling but don’t make your body work hard to digest before bed. Adding fruits to your pancakes, waffles or crepes and adding chopped veggies to an omelet are just a few ways to get your daily servings satisfied. It’s also quicker & healthier than drive-through stops.

5. It’s Delicious!

Breakfast foods are my favorite category (besides desserts). I would rather eat breakfast foods throughout the day than anything else. For me, lunch is just a late breakfast or leftover dinner, something to get me through the day. Pinterest is filled with tasty ideas! Taste of Home is another site I search for great recipes.

 

What are your favorite breakfast dishes to enjoy for dinner? Share your ideas in the comments.

 

 

Fruit Pizza

This Fruit Pizza recipe has been a favorite in our family for many years. It can be made at any time of the year with your favorite fruits and whatever is available.  It’s easy, delicious & always disappears quickly. 


Ingredients:


sugar cookie dough (16 pz prepared dough, store bought or homemade)

8 oz cream cheese

2 Tb plain yogurt or sour cream (light or fat free can be used, if you’d like)

2 Tb powdered sugar

1 Tb lemon rind

1 Tb lemon juice

approx 3 cups of sliced fruit (fresh or canned)



Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease a pan – I use a large pizza pan. If you don’t have one, you can use a large cookie sheet or get a round baking pan at the dollar store. 


Press the cookie dough into a circle on the pan for the crust.  Bake for 8-10 minutes and let cookie cool.


In a mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, yogurt/sour cream, powdered sugar, lemon rind & lemon juice and mix well.  Spread the mixture over the cooled cookie crust.


Top with lots of delicious fruit.


Slice like a pizza, serve & enjoy!