Thursday, July 5, 2012

How to make play dough!

Every kid loves play dough! I even find myself enthusiastically making creations with my two boys!

However, it is something kids go through quickly. It dries out, the colors get mixed together...etc Not to mention, it is not always convenient to run to the store when you want to!

No need to find your shoes and keys when the urge to play hits... simply head to your kitchen! Save time, money, and your cars fuel by making it at home. Your kids will love the experience, and you'll love the convenience and cost savings! Its safe, non-toxic, and although salty - safe to eat in the instance your kids try to eat!

Here's what you need:

2 cups plain flour
2 cups water
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp cream of tartar
1 cup salt
food coloring

  1. Mix all the ingredients together until completely combined.
  2. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly for three or four minutes or until the mixture changes consistency, becomes thick, and loses its stickiness.  Dump onto waxed paper or cutting board.
  3. Knead the play dough for a few minutes until cool and smooth
  4. Divide into balls and add coloring (use plastic gloves to avoid staining your hands)
  5. PLAY!
  6. Store in air tight container

I split the ingredients in half to make two sets - one for each of the boys


cream of tartar
water and oil

I have the boys mix all of the ingredients themselves!

In goes the salt!

Cream of Tartar...

Mixing the dry ingredients...

And the water and oil last!

Time to cook it! I use a low heat setting, and stir constantly

Here it starts to look like mashed potatoes

Looks like a ruined mess, but its not! Its perfect!

Noah stole the camera and took a pic of me :)

Put the mess on cutting/rolling board 

Its gonna be hot, but you need to kneed it until it cools and is a malleable lump of dough

Voila! The malleable (lol, what a funny word) lump of dough!

I'm gonna make four colors, so I separated the ball into four smaller ones! Make sure you sagh!ve a little if you want plain white dough.

Use as many drops as necessary to get the color you want!

Toothpaste is great for getting the color out of your hands if you don't use gloves!

Our colors! Dunno what happened to this pic or why its pink!


The last photos were taken with my they are a bit off... but you can still see the fun!

I store the play dough in a plastic container. It lasts a long long time!

I love DIY!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

How to win prizes from my trivia game :)

Hey folks, apparently I cannot offer you prizes ON Facebook.  I can ask you the questions so long as there is no prize involved!

So - I have deleted the posts that talk about prizes and put a disclaimer on the page.

The prizes are still up for grabs however!

5 questions will be asked. The first 5 correct answers will get their names put in a hat, from which I will draw 3 names. Prizes for the winners will be a fresh water pearl necklace, a vintage compact mirror, and a black pashmina.

Please leave me a comment here with your name and email address so I contact you if you win, as contacting you through facebook for this is also against the rules!

Friday, September 9, 2011

How to make a candy pacifier for a babyshower

These make great baby shower favors, cupcake toppers, game prizes, or decorations. They are also easy to make and completely edible.  You can customize them to fit your theme by changing the colors of the ribbon or candy.

candy pacifier materials
What you'll need:
  • Lifesaver candy (white works best)- 2 for each pacifier
  • Icing- decorator icing or royal icing (recipe here)
  • Jelly beans or Mike and Ike candy
  • Ribbon


Step 1:
Spread some icing in the middle of a lifesaver (the icing will be the glue to hold the candy together). Take another lifesaver and put on top of the icing, making a T- shape. Place on waxed paper and let dry for a few hours.
how to make a candy pacifier- step 1

Step 2:
Put some more icing in the middle of the life saver on top. Stick a jelly bean in the middle to look like the nipple of a pacifier. Smooth out the icing with your finger or a knife. Lay on waxed paper and let the icing harden.
how to make a candy pacifier- step 2

Step 3:
Tie a piece of curling ribbon through the hole in the bottom lifesaver. Curl the ribbon with some scissors.

You can also make a necklace. Just put a long piece of ribbon through the middle of the bottom lifesaver and tie in a knot at the ends.

*Make sure to use a thick icing that will harden, like decorator icing or royal icing. You can buy a container of pre-maid decorator icing or make your own royal icing.

*Handle your candy favors carefully until they are completely dry.

*Use large jelly beans or Mike and Ike candy for a more realistic look.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

How to make a media kit for your PR friendly blog

Today is a guest post by Terri from Terri's Little Haven!

Have you ever opened up an email and started with YEAH!! Woo hoo! Go Terri! (I'm sure you didn't say Terri) but I bet you had those arms going around in the dance we all love to do... then ended it with wha... WELL. I. DID. And as I was reading this wonderful email a nagging feeling was lurking behind me like Abby does when she thinks it's going to be funny to throw a wet washcloth on me when I'm tip tap typing away. Before I finished the email I went from :D to :/ to :( .. I'll tell you why. In two simple words. Media kit.

It's been a long time since those two words ever crossed my mind. M E D I A * K I T I left out one important tool in having a PR friendly blog.

I needed one. Right then. I couldn't use a previous one because I'm changing. My blog is changing. My baby is being transformed into something new. So I did what we sometimes do, I faked it. Yep. I did. I didn't panic (yeah right) I calmly set out to see what exactly has changed in the past year or so (or so is more like it) and I whipped one up.

Of course when that happens things aren't always translated right. We tend to leave things out or miss something we wouldn't have otherwise. I realized after I hit click that the stats I sent on my site were only based on Monday - Wednesday's visitors and I used them to calculate a week and a month. I undersold myself. What it all boils down to was --- I wasn't prepared and I did not PROOFREAD.

Don't make my mistake, be prepared. If it's time to update your media kit, do it. If you haven't yet made a media kit yet, make one. Have a well thought out media kit available so when a company contacts you and would like to compensate you for services they request, you are READY.

If you are wondering how to make a media kit I'm going to show you how I made mine. Don't pull a Terri and make yours in 5 minutes. Put some thought behind it. Believe me I'll be prepared next time. I will have a media kit that is up to date and professional that I can proudly send.

Go make some coffee, we are fixing to get busy. Then save your site banner to your desktop.

Time to open up word. (don't you just love my desktop background-can you tell I'm ready for fall?) 

Page 1 We're going to add that banner you saved to your desktop by clicking on insert then picture then from file.


Ta-da... of course we want it in the middle so we are going to click on the banner then go click on................. yep you guessed it! Center.


Now we need to use our mouse and click on the banner and go to insert and then hyperlink. 


This box will pop up and we are going to type our URL in the address line like so and select ok. Now our website is linked to our banner. One less thing. Don't break your arm patting yourself on the back just yet, we still need to make tables...

The next thing we are going to do is type in a little information about our site and ourselves so we need to click enter a few times then up in the top right corner select to align left. 


So lets get to typing. We need to tell a company a little about ourselves (not too much but sum it up)... Such as My name is Terri and I'm the author and owner of Terri's Little Haven. I like to blog about this and this and this and so on..... 

I reside in the state of Georgia and I'm active in social media networking and community's yadda yadda yadda yadda.... Offline I'm active in our church... so on. Short paragraph, these companies are busy. They don't have time to read our wonderful life histories. Can't you just imagine how I could go on and on about my ADORABLE grand kids? 

Then we need to tell a company a little about our site including things like where are readers come from, what age range, where are they coming from the most... 

Lets see.... I could say right here something like; My readers vary from young moms to senior citizens. I get readers worldwide (if you do, I do mainly from google search and we'll talk about that in another post sometime). My largest reader state is California yadda yadda yadda...

Lets end this with an important signature, meaning, add your phone number. Let companies know you don't mind talking to them. Show them you are serious and responsible. 

Terri Beavers 
terrishaven @

I made two errors on my main page. I'm going to be kicking myself in the shins for a long time to come. I did not proofread. A no no. A BIG no no. No, it's a H U G E no no. I'm a college graduate. I know better. 
Then ask someone to go behind you and proofread if you're still not sure. Ask me if you have to. 


Page 2 Now we need to do the same thing we did in the very beginning to add our banner. 

After we have our banners added we need to make a table. 

Hit enter a couple of times and up in the right hand corner click on left alignment again.

Now select tables, then click on the table in the far left, and a box will pop up for you to select how many columns and rows you want. I put 8 and 2 in the box and clicked ok. This was too many so I deleted the extra by right clicking in the box and selecting to delete the entire column. 


Now we need to determine what it is we are willing to sell on our sites as far as banner and text links go and what our terms are concerning these and if we are willing to write posts for companies for a fee. Our sites are our babies. We won't post just anything, right?


Make sure you fill out your prices and your terms such as no refund... yadda yadda.


In my rush to complete a media kit, I made an important boo boo. I used # instead of $ in one of my boxes. Shame on me. It all boils down to proofreading.

Page 3 
Now that we have that finished we move on the next page to make another table. 

Add your banner select left alignment again. 

We repeat the table making steps above except we only want 2 columns this time and around 8 rows, if we have to add more we can do that by hitting enter when we type in the last column of the table. 


We need to type in things like our name, our website URL, our twitter handle, facebook page, yadda yadda yadda.... we also need to tell them how many twitter followers we have, how many likes on our facebook pages, etc....... Site stats are important here. The companies want to know how many unique visitors you have, how many first time visitors, etc. It's a good policy to take a screen shot of your stats and include it. Don't exaggerate your stats, they selected you for a reason. Be true to you and your site. 


Now let me tell you my mistake on this page. I used stats for three days and sold myself short for the other four by rushing and not paying attention.
I probably lost a potential company by not being prepared. 

Be prepared, don't make my mistakes. 
Take this time now while it's fresh in your mind to make a media kit or update yours. 
Make sure you add a PR Friendly page to your site. It's how companies search to find my site in Google.

If this post has helped you at all then please click on my Google + and Facebook like button.


Thanks so much for that Terri! Terri's Little Haven

Questions or comments? Tell me! Tell her! At least hop over and say hi :)


Monday, August 15, 2011

How to avoid ghosts during the Hungry Ghost Festival

I guess I should first make sure that everyone knows what the Hungry Ghost festival is...


Hungry Ghost Festival is a traditional Chinese holiday celebrated during the 7th lunar month. In Chinese tradition, the 15th day of the 7th month in the lunar calendar is called Ghost Day with the 7th month in general being regarded as the Ghost Month. It is during this time in which ghosts and spirits, including those of the deceased ancestors, come out from the lower realm to visit the living.

It is up to the living to appease these ghosts, and try to alleviate their suffering by preparing food offerings, burning incense and joss paper, as well as papier-mâché form of material items such as clothes, gold and other high end items for the visiting spirits. They will also set candle lit boats, and lanterns afloat on the water as a symbolic way of guiding the lost spirits.

Its actually all really interesting and fun.

Here is an article from The Star in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia - on how to avoid meeting ghosts during this time. I found it very amusing!

Just a reminder (as per the article) you should avoid:

*Don't cut your hair - split ends let them know you are suffering too

*Don't shave - ghosts like scruffy

*Don't hang clothes outside the house - the ghosts may steal them...

*Don't move house - the dead want to know where to find you, moving confuses them

*Don't buy a new car - save the new car for the dead ancestors!

*Stay away from the walls - ghosts stick to the walls, and they will attach to you if you brush by them

*Don't go on outings- you should stay home, but if you do stay home - for the love of fireworks, avoid the walls!

*Don't be female - it increases the risk apparently as ghosts and ladies are full of Ying (men are Yangs) and estrogen

Happy Ghost Month! I am gonna go a huntin!