Archive for ‘Spring’

March 28, 2013

Fingerprint Blossoms

IMG_0621The blossoms are out and spring is in the air!  I am reminded of a craft I did with my girls last year during their spring break.  I just brought these pictures out with our Easter decorations and I thought I’d share. This was a really simple craft.  I only drew the trunk of the tree (as you can see, I am no artist), and the girls drew the rest with their own fingers in the style they wanted.  I bought the frames from a craft store for around $3.  I turned around the cardboard inserts that came with them and used the blank sides.  We just used the Crayola washable paint.  I’m realizing that having seasonal art in the house makes any season that much more special.  As the years go by and their little fingers grow, that simple art will become a treasure.  Only one year has passed, but I’m already seeing how this can happen.

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March 16, 2013

St. Patrick’s Day Fruit Rainbow

IMG_3100Well I finally joined Pinterest and just in time.  I found this cute St. Patrick’s Day Fruit Rainbow idea (you can see the original picture here).

We gave it a try today.  My girl’s were able to do everything themselves except cut the mango.  They even had the cute idea of making the pot of gold from black play dough.  Once we finally gave the go ahead to start eating, it vanished so fast I thought the leprechauns took it! Pair this with Irish Soda Bread and you are set for a fun St. Patrick’s Day.

March 16, 2013

Irish Soda Bread for St. Patrick’s Day

When my daughter was three, she attended this awesome preschool co-op in Seattle.  For Saint Patrick’s Day (on my day to help), we made Irish Soda Bread.  I had never tried soda bread before.  After trying it warm from the oven I thought I have got to make this again for Saint Patrick’s Day.  Two years later and I’m finally doing it.  What makes this recipe so special is the mix of two ingredients I had no idea I liked – caraway seeds and currants.  I’ll be making this again year after year as well as the St. Patrick’s Day Fruit Rainbow.Soda Bread

3 cups sifted unbleached flour

1 ½ teaspoons baking soda

1 ½ teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

4 tablespoons butter ( ½ stick), softened at room temperature

¾ cup currants

1 tablespoon caraway seeds

1 egg

1 cup buttermilk

2 tablespoons honey

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Thoroughly mix together sifted flour, soda, baking powder, and salt.  Cut in soft butter, working it in with your fingers until it is evenly distributed and the texture is a bit like corn meal. Stir in currants and caraway seeds. Beat egg, buttermilk, and honey together in a small bowl. Add milk mixture to dry ingredients, stirring briefly only to moisten evenly.  Do not overmix.

Turn onto lightly floured board and briefly kneed just to form smooth dough.  (You may have to press a bit to get it to feel ‘smooth’ and distribute the moisture.) Shape into a high, round ball. Place on buttered baking sheet. Slash vertically and horizontally about 4 inches long and ½ inch deep. (Don’t go too deep.)

Bake at 350 degrees for about 45-55 minutes.  Cool for about 20 minutes before slicing.

The Greyston Bakery Cookbook

April 8, 2012

Jelly Bean Bracelet

I feel like Easter just crept up on me this year, and since it was also my daughter’s spring break I thought I should find a few fun crafts to do.  After a quick search on my phone, I found this cute blog called Edible Crafts that showed a Jelly Bean Bracelet.  My kids are genetically prone to love jelly beans.  A highlight of my life has been my three (you read that right, three) visits to the Jelly Belly Factory in Fairfield, California. To be fair, two of those visits were when I lived less than an hour away in Berkeley.  Knowing that, you probably wonder…”why only three visits?”

Back to the craft.  I bought some thicker needles with a more blunt point for my kids to use, but I think normal needles will work too.  I actually ended up standing the needle on its eye and pushing the jelly bean down (holding it by its sides).  I used dental floss for the string.  By the end you are a bit sticky, but I will say the bracelets were a hit!  I like the look of the old-fashioned jelly beans, but they are a bit thick to push the needle through.  I think next year I will try my beloved Jelly Belly beans.