Monday, February 28, 2011


I love Italian food. There is something about it that I just love. Well everything except marinara sauce. I prefer a white sauce on pretty much everything. My favorite thing is gelato – I could eat that every day!

In addition to loving Italian food, I love meals that are easy – no extra steps and whatnot. And that is just what I have for you today, a super easy Italian dish: Bruscetta. We have this on garlic bread or over noodles. My kids even enjoy eating it. This is my version of it, I am sure there other recipes out there, but this works for us.
4-5 ripe tomatoes - diced
1 onion Рdiced and saut̩ed in olive oil
diced garlic
1 Tbsp onion powder
1 Tbsp basil – can use fresh
1 Tbsp balsalmic vinegar
2 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Mix all ingredients together and serve over garlic bread, or noodles. You can always add more tomatoes to your liking. I like onions, so I always add extra of then! ;)
 Thing #3 even likes to eat this plain. This is especially good in the summer – perfect for the hot weather!
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We have a winner!

I want to give a big thank you to all of you who entered my Clutch giveaway, and to all of you who helped me to reach 100 followers! It is awesome. But we have a winner . . .

The lucky number is: 5 - Mindie Hilton who said : "I like hobo bags the best I think."

Send me an email within 48 hours with your info and I will get your package out to you!

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Saturday, February 26, 2011

Honeysuckle Dresser

Remember that bed that I am working on for Thing #2's birthday? I am working on it in my friends basement because she has the room to do these kind of projects. Today I want to show you what she has done. This girl is absolutely amazing. I was over there and she showed me this dresser that she picked up at the thrift store for $5. (She really made a killing there that day, because she got another similar dresser as well for next to nothing!)

She is working on her guest room and thought that this would be a perfect addition to it.
 She did this project in under a week. I was there one day painting and then the next week when I went over I was taking these pictures of the finished product! She says that when she gets started she is obsessive about it and works on it until it is done. I wish I could do that sometimes! 
 Tell me that is not the most beautiful dresser you have seen! She sanded it all down and primed, painted and then antiqued it up with a little bit of stain. Just lovely if you ask me!
 Here is some close up of the detail. You could not really see it in the dark color of the old dresser, but it really stands out here.
 When she put the handles on again, she put them on upside down because she liked the way they looked. I never even noticed until she told me.
 I am really not that good with refinishing, I would  like to be, and maybe someday I will with a little bit more practice and a little help from her! But if I could ever make something like this dresser I would be happy with myself!
In her guest room the bed has a blue comforter with yellow and pinkish flowers on it - the one from Pottery Barn (if you are like me you have drooled over this comforter). She even got the items on top of the dresser from the thrift store as well.
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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Fantastic Friday #8

Can you believe that it is Friday already! I cannot believe that this month is almost over! Where has the time gone! I have been so busy this week. I spent pretty much all day Wednesday working on some bridesmaids dresses, then on Thursday I had a hair appointment in the morning and Conan had a work event all afternoon. And for Friday . . . yep, I will be sewing some more dresses!

Last weeks party was awesome we had so many fun projects shared.But today's party is all about you and what you have all been working on this week! I cannot wait to see what you will all share with us this week. I get so much inspiration from all of you! I have not had a chance to visit all of the links from last week, but I am working on it! This week the one that caught my eye was these fantastic Drop Cloth Curtains made by Inspiring Creativeness. I love these. I have plans to make some for my living room - hopefully sooner rather than later. And look at that cute lamp that she has as well, just beautiful!

Grab a button to let everyone know that you have been featured here!

Iron Violet Designs

Now onto our party for this week. Let's see what you all have been up to this week, and link your FANTASTIC creations up!

*link up anything that you have made - sewn, cooked, crafted, etc. family friendly of course.
*must link to a blog post, not your home page, another linky party, etsy shop or giveaway.
*link back to this post so that others can join in on the fun. Grab a button or do a text link either one is fine with me.
*visit a few of the links and leave comments! I enjoy comments because it makes me feel like someone is actually reading what I write! ;)
*become a follower of Iron Violet Designs, the more the merrier!
Iron Violet Designs

Let's get started:

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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Sewing Adventures

 If you are like me, you probably have a couple of projects going at once. I have a couple of sewing projects and a couple of craft projects - I like it this way so that I don't get bored with one fabric print, or if I need to think about the best way to complete a project I can step away for a while and do something else.

But then you get thrown for a loop and have a few more things to sew. Like these scout shirts. In my sons scout troop word got out that I sew - it might have been the fact that he has all his badges sewn on his shirt, and is practically the only one that way. So I worked on these two the other day. Luckily they are easy!

I am also sewing some bridesmaid dresses, and this is a little bit time consuming - I will show you the finished product when I finally get them done. (Which I hope is sooner than later!)

 Also, some of you may remember that I am trying to use up my fabric stash. I am a hoarder, it is true, and in trying to stick to my budget I am not buying fabric - just trying to use what I have.
 I bought this fabric over two and a half years ago. I bought it because I loved it and what really helped me to love it even more was that it was on sale. I love getting a good deal! I paid $10 for all of those fat quarters. I just wish that I still lived close to this store so that I could get more fabric at a good deal! ;)
I did buy this fabric with a pattern in mind - so I was able to buy all that I needed. I hate it when I get started on something and then I am short on one kind of fabric and have to make up something because I cannot find it anywhere. Unfortunately I had changed the pattern a bit in my head to make the quilt bigger. When looking at the pattern I wrote the new measurements of fabric that I needed, but I did not write what I was going to do to make it bigger.

I have it all figured out now, and I have it all cut and I had it all sewn together. I say had because I failed to look at the picture when I was putting it together and put it together wrong. I almost left it, but it continued to bug me, so I spent the majority of the week unpicking it all. But now I have it all ready to go . . .again.  I place all my stuff on my little ironing board so that I can put it up high out of little hands reach.

So I do not have any any completed sewing projects for you today - just a few works in progress. But I did sew this wonderful clutch last week that I am giving away here.
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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Clutch Giveaway

 Last week I was super excited to have reached 100 followers, and now I am a few past that! Yippee!! I have been wanted to make one of these clutches for a little while and I thought that now was a perfect time! So I have this super cute flower clutch to give to one of you!

There is a cute ruffle along the front with this awesome flower to really complete the look.

The inside is completely lined - which I personally think is a must for every kind of bag!

The details: This giveaway will end on Saturday Feb 26th at 5pm mountain time.

* Be a follower of Iron Violet Designs (mandatory) - 1 entry (leave comment saying so)

* Blog, tweet, or say something on facebook about this giveaway - 1 entry, again leave comment

* and just for an extra fun entry share with us what you favorite type of bag is - 1 entry

Approximate dimensions on this clutch are: 5" tall, 5" across bottom, 8" across top. It is made out of heavy upholstery type fabric.
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Monday, February 21, 2011

Second try

I have seen these cake balls, I have drooled over these cake balls, I have even tried to make them once before - it is was a horrible mess. But I decided to try again last week. The girls in my church love them and so I decided to make them for our weekly activity.

The first time I made them I thought to myself, 'how hard could this be?' Well a lot harder then I thought. Me and my kids made reindeer for Christmas - and it was so bad that you do not even get to see a picture of them. But the kids ate them, because I have really yet to find anything that they will not eat. But they were falling off the sticks, crumbling apart, everything!

However this time I made them they were not a total failure! I was surprised to say the least. But I did find one thing that worked better for me this time: I did not use the whole tub of frosting when I was mixing them up. I use only about 3/4 of it. This was they were not too sticky. Also because they would be eating them right away I decided not to add decoration stuff to them - just a simple M&M on the top to cover where to stick was we used to dip them. I made these fairly big because man, I just got sick of rolling cake balls!
Have you tried to make these cake balls yet? If so did it work for you, or do you have some tips that you want to share with me to help me for next time?!

And one more thing . . . I have a giveaway for tomorrow so be sure to check back!
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Saturday, February 19, 2011

I made it!!!

Have you all seen the contest One Month to Win it? Well yesterday they selected those who are to participate and I actually made it! I was so blown away - there is some serious talent out there. Now I have to come up with a project for this next week! I am a little bit nervous, but at the same times excited. I entered my fantastic flower pillow.

You should all head over there and become a follower of One Month to Win it, that way you can stay caught up on everything and be sure to vote when the projects are posted. Of course I will also remind you on here when it is time to go and vote, because I am nice that way. ;) Have a great weekend!
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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Fantastic Friday #7

It is Friday!!! And that means it is time to spotlight you and all of the Fantastic things you have been working on. Also I have some exciting news to share with all of you. I have reached 100 followers!! YAY!! I was super duper excited! Mindie Hilton was my 100th follower. And because of her I decided that I was going to do a giveaway for all of you. I am still trying to decide what exactly I want to do - I am thinking a little clutch thing - but I will let you know next week!!

Last weeks party was a smashing success! We had so many fun projects linked up. I am still working on visiting all of them - I have been a tad bit busy these last few days. The week I am featuring this super cute and cheap crayon monogram by Sugar Bananas. I am in the process of collecting letters to make one of those ABC walls in my house and I just loved this. This will be my letter C!

Grab a button to let everyone know that you have been featured here!

Iron Violet Designs

Now onto our party for this week. Let's see what you all have been up to this week, and link your FANTASTIC creations up!

*must link to a blog post, not your home page, another linky party, etsy shop or giveaway.
*link back to this post so that others can join in on the fun. Grab a button or do a text link either one is fine with me.
*visit a few of the links and leave comments! I enjoy comments because it makes me feel like someone is actually reading what I write! ;)
*become a follower of Iron Violet Designs. You know you want to do this, and heavens knows it makes me feel good! ;)
Iron Violet Designs

Let's get started:
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Finished at last!

 These book page wreaths have been around forever, and I finally have mine done! It was not a matter of finding time to finish it - because these really go together quite fast - it was more of finding exactly what I wanted to put in the middle. I decided to make mine on a cardboard circle instead of a wreath form because I was going to be hanging it on the wall and well I had cardboard and I did not want to go to the store.
 I rolled by book pages at a little bit of a angle to give it the pointed ends. I like the way it turned out.
 This is one that my friend Amy made at our craft group. She used a wreath form and just rolled her pages. she left the torn side out to make it look a little bit more rustic looking.
 Here is her finished project. She did get a big fat ribbon to hang it up with.
 And here is mine when I was almost done. And I was almost done for about 3 months. I would just sit there and look at it trying to decide what I wanted to put in the middle. I got the idea to roll my pages at an angle from the Pleasures of Homemaking. I really liked her wreath, and I loved how she used coffee filters in the middle. I just did not make to make mine seasonal like she did, I wanted to have mine up year round.
I finally decided to use the coffee filters in the middle and then I got a letter G  - for my last name - and modge podged some paper onto it and inked the edges a little bit. I then inked the edges of the coffee filters to help them to blend a little bit more.

I used some of that fabulous blue floral fabric that I used on Thing #2's apron to hang it up with. And we have a finished craft! You got to love it when you finish one of those projects that have been sitting around for a month. Well I actually had it hanging up with nothing in the middle ever since I got it all glued together. Do you have any projects that you are just waiting on that last minute inspiration to finish - or just need to pick up one more thing from the store (in my case that would be the one thing I always forget when I go to the store)? I would love for you to share with me what you are working on endlessly. ;)

Have a great day!

Don't forget tomorrow is Fantastic Friday - I cannot wait to see what you have all been up to this week!
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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Kids Apron

I like to participate in Ucreate's monthly create with me to help me maybe make something that I would otherwise not make. However in this months case - sewing an apron - I have already made a few. But I decided that my girl could use another one. (at the rate she is growing she will be wearing mine before I know it!) So I made a kids one instead of an adult. And the best part about it this cost me . . . $3! Can a craft get much better than that?!

This is super simple too. I found my fabric at Hobby Lobby in the remnants. I actually bought it a while ago because I thought it was super cute and knew I would find something to do with it (tell me I am not the only one out there who does this.) I had the yellow left over from something, and the blue flower was leftover from a grab bag of quilting fabrics.

I took one of those Home Depot aprons that they give to the kids (not sure if they still do this because it has been a couple of years since we went for those Saturday things.) But I traced it and cut the main part of the apron out. I changed the ties and the neck part because I did not like how they were done in the home depot one.
First I sewed the ruffle along the edge and then I sewed the yellow ties on like it was bias tape. I ran out of yellow or I would have put some along the top. I then sewed the pocket on. It is a huge pocket and now that I have seen it on her, I think that I am going to go and make it two pockets instead of one big one. And yesterday we had fabulous weather that I took a picture of the apron outside!

I actually had enough of my remnant piece to make an apron for my niece as well. Except she got blue instead of yellow - you got to work with what you have!

Linking to these great parties.
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Monday, February 14, 2011

Dirt Cake

First off I want to wish all of you a Happy Valentines Day! I hope that all of you have a wonderful day spent with the ones that you love! I am super excited because the last two years Conan has been gone on business for Valentines day - but not this year!!

Today I have one of the simplest treats to share with you. How simple you might ask? So simple that my kids did pretty much everything! (I don't let them touch the food processor yet, so I did that part.)

This is called Dirt Cake, and is a huge hit with boys!

Chocolate pudding - I used a big box to make this 8x8 pan.
chocolate cookies - oreo's or similar
Gummy worms

Make your pudding according to package directions. Pour into the bottom of your pan.
 Crush sandwich cookies into crumbs. Sprinkle over the top of pudding.
Place gummy worms in crumbs. 

And now my friend you are done! I told you it was easy. We actually made this for a scout event last week, and all the boys loved it. Also what is easy is to make this and layer it into paper cups instead of a pan. Then you just can grab a cup and go!
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Sunday, February 13, 2011

Taking care of Business

If any of you are interested in being a guest blogger on my site please let me know, I would love to have you.

Also I am interested in having a few sponsors to help out with my blog. If you are interested in that please contact me so that we can work something out.

And . . . (I know one more thing) if you want to do a giveaway here that would be awesome. I am going to be doing a giveaway here in a couple of days when I reach 100 followers - that is just amazing to me - But I would love to have more to giveaway!

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Saturday, February 12, 2011

Guest Blogger - Fun Crayons

Today I have a special treat for all of you. I have my first guest blogger!! And she is awesome if I say so myself. ;) (But sisters are biased). But here is more about her and her blog and her craft she is sharing . . .

I am SO EXCITED to be here guest posting here at Iron Violet Designs.   My name is Krystal, and I write a little blog called Recipes Of A Cheapskate.  Jen, the mastermind behind Iron Violet Designs, is my older sister!!  Which makes me even MORE excited to be posting here.  That, and I have a recipe blog, I don't get to share crafts with othesr very often.

In my blogging efforts,  I have the support of my dear husband, Captain Jax, and two little kidlets--K-girl, who just turned 3, and Baby M, who is almost 11 months.  They put up with me trying new things in the kitchen, and usually eat what I make.  As long as there's no onions (or beans, or squash, or cauliflower. . .)!!  You'll occasionally see me post things regarding Baby M, my sweet  preemie boy who was born 11 weeks early last year.

He's 100% tube-fed, and I'm finding it's very difficult being a mom who loves to cook, having a baby who doesn't know how to eat.

On my blog, you can find all sorts of good recipes, that aren't going to break the bank.  I don't like spending an arm and a leg at the grocery store (who does?) so I often have recipes that use ingredients that I can store on my shelves, grow in my garden, or freeze.  I love being able to freeze a good meal for a busy day!!

I have some yummy appetizers you can cook up just in time for your next party!

And some grilled recipes for when BBQ season kicks off!

And if you're a breakfast person, I have a lot of recipes using a Master Pancake Mix.  it's like a Bisquick mix, only better :)

As well as your every day dinners when you just need to pull stuff out of your fridge and pantry.

This craft I'm going to share with you, was so much fun to make, and so easy!  I even had K-girl in there helping me.  She LOVED it.

Start off with 1-2 boxes of crayons.  I used two boxes, that I bought for like 10cents at a back-to-school sale.  You could also use the leftover broken crayons from your kids you have lying around!  Peel the papers off the crayons, and break them into small pieces.  Since I was using 2 boxes, I had two crayons of each color.

Place the broken crayons into your silicone mold of choice.  You can mix them up and have rainbow crayons, or match similar colors up.  The idea of rainbow crayons does NOT appeal to me visually--so I placed the two matching crayons in each mold.  They fit perfectly!

Then you get to throw them in your oven for a little while!  After about 10 minutes you want to stir them up.

 K-girl was anxiously awaiting her chance to stir. I couldn't keep her out of the toothpicks, she was having so much fun helping me!

Use a toothpick, or skewer, something you can just toss.  Just stir each one a little bit, to help get the lumps moved around so everything will melt.  Stick them back in the oven for a few minutes, then stir again.  Keep doing that until everything's melted.

Let the crayons harden, then pop them out of the mold and give them away!  We gave this to K-girl's cousin, who was having a birthday that week.

Posted at:
  • 1-2 boxes crayons
  • silicone mold
  • toothpicks for stirring
Preheat oven to 300degs.  Peel the crayons, and then break them into small pieces, and place in the mold.  Place the mold on a tray, so it rests on a flat surface while it's in the oven.  Melt the crayons in the oven for about 10 minutes, the stir with a toothpick.  Stick them back in the oven, taking them out to stir every few minutes, until they're completely melted.  Let them sit until they're hardened, and then pop out of the mold!

I also wanted to share with you my weekly link-up called Saturday's Party that EVERYONE is invited to come LINK UP every week with your party ideas!!  I don't care if it's crafts, decor, gift ideas, or food, ANYTHING related to parties is welcome!!

Thanks so much for letting me be a Guest Blogger Jen!!  It was lots of fun to create something special for your readers.  Come on by and visit Recipes Of A Cheapskate!  

Thanks for posting here today Krystal - and you all should check out her blog, she is a great cook and throws awesome parties! Enjoy your Saturday!
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