Monday, December 17, 2012

Gift Ideas for Christmas

Do you ever start a project and it becomes bigger than you thought it would?  I showed you the Candy Boxes yesterday. Yes, I actually made 22 of those things for co-workers.  But that's not all I did this weekend...No.  I always have to out-do myself, and this time is no exception.  I am a team lead for 9 people at my work and I decided to give everyone a stocking to hang outside of their cubicles.  Now, I knew I needed to fill them!
Remember the cute little post-it books I made at Halloween?  Well, here they are again, only this time they are ready for the Christmas holiday. (the link will show you a more descriptive photo) These books are simple to make too.  Here are the steps:

  • Cut 4 pieces of decorative paper 3.25" x 3.75"
  • Cut 2 pieces of chipboard 3.25" x 3.75"
  • Adhere the paper to both sides of the chipboard.  I used double-sided paper and made sure my front and back covers were the same, any my inside covers were the same.
  • lightly sand all edges of covers
  • lightly ink all edges of covers
  • I used my bind-it-all and punched out 6 holes in the top.  I then bound it with 3/4" wire.
  • I applied adhesive to the back of a post-it book and placed it inside.
  • Embellish the cover however you like!  I used paper rosettes and whatever else I could think of.  No two were alike.

I also whipped up a yummy little bag of home made caramels.   I showcased the caramels a couple years back, but they were ready for a redo this year.  Before you think, "forget making home made caramels...who has the time or patience?"  You better check the recipe out.  Did I mention they cook in the microwave??  So easy!!  My good friend, Jackie, gave me this recipe and it really is wonderful.

Microwave Caramels
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar (packed)
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk

In a glass bowl, melt butter. Add remaining ingredients and mix
well. Microwave 7 minutes, stirring after 3 minutes. Pour into
buttered 8x8 or 9x9 pan. Cool to room temperature. Chill, cut
and wrap in wax paper.
Tips and Tricks:
- Use just slightly less than 2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
so that you can get two batches out of each can! It won’t
mess up the recipe.
- Use a metal pan.
- After caramels come to room temperature, chill in fridge for
about one hour. Take out and let sit for just a few minutes then
pop out of pan in one big block.
- Cut with pizza cutter. I try to get 81 caramels out of each
batch, so 9 rows by 9 rows of about ¾-1” in size.
- Cut wax paper into 4x4 squares using a paper trimmer (like
you use for scrap booking projects)

After the caramels were wrapped up, I put them in a clear acetate bag and cut a header out of the matching decorative paper I used for my projects.  I also put the post-it book in a bag as well, to keep the embellishments on the front nice and sharp for gift giving.  It was definitely a busy weekend, but it was really fun.  I haven't spent this many hours in my craft room for a very long time!

1 comment:

ShersL84bed said...

yummmmmmmmmy, I can't wait to do this recipe now. we used different ingredients, not sure how they will turn out. We used heavy whipping cream, brown sugar, white sugar, salt, vanilla. No butter at all. Weird huh?

I don't have the patience to do it like that again. Thank you for this recipe I am going to try it for sure.

Smiles Sher