Ideas for Gifts that delight

DIY Holiday Graphic_2-01

It is that time of the year when we (or most of us) are scrambling for last-minute ideas for unique and beautiful Christmas gifts. If you do not shy away from some hands-on crafting and making, consider these gifts that are sure to delight.

1: Marbled Pitcher
Using a classic white pitcher and adding a marbled print makes for an oh-so-useful and decorative gift. The secret ingredient: nail polish
Click here for the how to>

2: Personalized Cutting Board
Yes – we admit it, this one is a little more involved. For starters, not everyone has the needed “hot tool” in their set of crafting utensils. But we included this DIY post here because we feel this makes a useful, versatile and very personal gift that is suitable for him or her alike.
Click here for the how to>

3: Rope Bowl
Modeled after a bowl seen at West Elm, this rustic bowl is useful and decorative and only requires 3 simple ingredients: a bowl, rope and a hot glue gun.
Click here for the how to>

4: Yard Yahtzee
This DIY yard game is a refreshing change from the conventional Cornhole. It’s easy to make and play and is fun for all ages.
Click here for the how to>

5: Gold-Dipped Mugs
There are 2 things we love here in the office – coffee and all things gold! This gold dipped coffee mug is sure to delight anyone that enjoys a hot beverage with some added glamour.
Click here for the how to>

Winning recipe: Turkey Dog Sushi

We recently asked our fans to share their favorite toddler-friendly recipes with us. We got some great ideas to try with our own kids and selected 2 winners to be featured here. Find the previous feature here: Easy Peasy Mac ‘n Cheesy
The second recipe we would like to share is form Kate Corbett.
We loved how this easy and kid-friendly meal gets our kids acquainted with the idea of eating “sushi”. We strongly believe that the littles will often dismiss a certain meal simply because they are convinced that they couldn’t possibly like something called “sushi”. So by serving them “sushi” they love at home might make them be more open to try it next time you order them a California Roll at the local sushi place.

Turkey Dog Sushi

Turkey Dog Sushi

Ingredients:
1 Turkey dog or regular hot dog
1 Six-inch (whole wheat) flour tortilla
1/3 c. Shredded Mozzarella

Spread the cheese evenly on the whole wheat flour tortilla, then take the turkey dog and starting at one end of the tortilla roll it up into the tortilla – ensuring the end flap is tucked under so it won’t come unrolled. Then cook in the microwave for 45-60 seconds. Let it cool for a few minutes. Then with a knife cut into half inch slices to create little Turkey Dog Sushi Rolls!

Courtesy of my husband & stay-at-home-dad to our boys

Recipe winner: Easy Peasy Mac n Cheesy

We recently asked our fans to share some easy and delicious toddler-friendly recipes with us. We enjoyed reading all your submissions and will definitely try some with our own picky eaters at home. We chose 2 winners from all the submissions to be featured on our blog. Here is the first one from Carrie Lee.
Thank you Carrier, we loved this healthy yet deliciously creamy adaptation of the traditional Mac ‘n Cheese! (And so did my 5 year old…)

Easy Peasy Mac n Cheesy

Easy Peasy Mac 'n Cheese

Ingredients:
whole wheat noodles
1 small butternut squash
5 cups of vegetable broth
3/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cups shredded cheese

Instructions:
Cook noodles as directed. Remove skin and seeds from squash and cut into small cubes. Bring the broth to a boil and add the squash. Cook for 5-7mins until it’s fork tender. Drain and save 1/2 cup of broth. Place the squash in blender and add the broth, salt, milk and purée until smooth. Pour the puréed sauce on the noodles and add the cheese on top and mix to melt the cheese.
You can add extra milk if necessary to get to desired consistency and voila😋

What’s in a name?

It’s one of the first decisions you are faced with when you find out you are pregnant, and then you spend months agonizing over it – what are we going to name the baby? Finding out the baby’s gender does help – at least in narrowing down the boy/girl options, but from there you are faced with so many other questions: Do we want a gender specific name? Do we want to honor a traditional family name? Do we want to spell the name this way or that way?

Many choose to keep the name, or at least the short-list, under wraps. However, there is now a new and very fun way to get some help in this arena, should you be stuck or even want to have a little fun with it – Belly Ballot. Belly Ballot is a social baby naming tool that works in 3 easy steps:

1) Pick your 5 favorite names,
2) Invite friends and family to vote (there are some really great prizes to be won also!)
3) Announce your final choice on Facebook and Twitter.

Include your loved ones in this special occasion!