Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Gift Card Flower Bouquet

The end of the school year is quickly approaching. As a teacher, I am counting down the days. I believe we're at about 13 days left. Not sure if that counts the early release last day of school. Nonetheless, myself and the littles are ready for summer! 

 As I was planning out gifts for AG's teachers for the end of the year, I realized I never shared the gift card bouquet I created last year. She was in a small school just a few days a week. As room mom, it was my "job" to put together a class gift to present at the end of the year musical program- which was the cutest thing I've ever seen. Anyhow, what I came up with for the end of the year gift was a bouquet for her teachers. I had all parents send in a gift card in any amount they wanted to give. The benefit to doing it this way as opposed to collecting money was I didn't have to keep track of a bunch of cash. Parents gave what they wanted. The only thing I communicated was what the giftcards were for, preventing duplicates. I collected them for a few weeks and then before the performance, I put together a bouquet. 

Here is how to create the giftcard bouquet. 

flower pot
cut out flowers using cardstock (you can hand cut, use a machine or purchase them)
cut out leaves on green cardstock
styrofoam ball, cut in half
wooden skewers
crinkle paper
hot glue or tape
paint, ribbon or anything to decorate the pot 


Paint the flower pot. I painted a message on the top and flowers with the kids names next to them. You can paint it however you like or just add one piece of ribbon to make a bow. 

Place half of the styrofoam ball down into the pot, make sure it goes down as far as possible to make it secure. 

Hot glue the flowers to the wooden skewers, treat the skewers as the stem of the flower. 

Glue the leaves to the skewers at varying lengths. 

Attach a giftcard to the flower with a paperclip. 

Push the skewers down into the styrofoam ball, making sure it's secure. Do this for all of the giftcards, arranging them like flowers in a bouquet. 

Once all flowers are in, add the crinkle paper to the top of the styrofoam to hide it. 

There you have it!  Simple, takes about a half hour and the teachers loved it! 

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Mediterranean Dip

I'm all about tasty and EASY appetizers. Especially when hosting a party. With everything to do to get party ready, preparing the food usually gets left until the last minute. I usually have friends walking through the door as I'm making the appetizers. Over the years, I've learned to have a few easy appetizers that are easy to make before the party starts. Appetizers that don't have to be baked in the oven or heated up. Ones that can be taken right out of the fridge and served.  This appetizer is that kind of recipe.  

 love Greek food. I could live off of greek salad and tzatziki with pita bread. This dip was right up my alley since it was filled with some of my favorite ingredients. I still can’t get over how easy this dip was to make. Definitely a semi-homemade win. 15 minutes was all it took to make the dip. Make it before a party and take it out as the first guest walks through the door!  This is a definite party pleaser! 


  1. In an 8x8 pie (or any serving) dish, spread the hummus evenly along the bottom.
  2. Peel the cucumbers. You can peel them in sections to create the look in the picture. Chop 2/3 of one of the cucumbers to create about 1/2 cup of chopped cucumber. Slice the rest into rounds.
  3. Sprinkle the chopped tomato and cucumber evenly over the hummus.
  4. Mix the paprika with the greek yogurt. Then spread the greek yogurt on top of the tomato/ cucumber layer. The easiest way to do this is putting spoonfuls over the top and gently spread it with a spatula. 
  5. Sprinkle the garlic salt over top.
  6. Place the cucumber rounds along the outside of the dish, gently pressing them down. Once you've used all of your cucumber rounds, sprinkle the peppers, olives and feta cheese on top of the greek yogurt mixture.
  7. Serve with pita chips.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Over the years, I’ve made tons of pumpkin cookies. Lots of different varieties from adding in toffee, nuts, white chocolate and just some spices. On this particular day, I was craving the combination of pumpkin and chocolate, so that is what I ran with.
I have to say that these are the BEST pumpkin cookies I’ve ever made. Many times with the pumpkin cookies, they’re a tad soft from the pumpkin. But not with this recipe. Not at all. They have a slight crisp to the outside and the chewy chocolate pumpkin goodness inside.
I took a container of them to work and they were completely gone by the end of the day. My two year old even absolutely loved them. To the point of where we had to hide the container so he wouldn’t cry for them. If you’re looking for a delicious cookie recipe for fall or even holiday cookie parties, this is it! 


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray cookie sheet with non stick cooking spray or place a baking mat on the cookie sheet.
  3. Combine flour, spices, baking soda, salt and oats in a medium bowl. In a large bowl beat butter and sugars until creamy and smooth
  4. In a separate bowl (large) beat butter, sugars, pumpkin, egg and vanilla until smooth, adding one ingredient at a time.
  5. Gradually mix in dry ingredients into the wet mixture until well combined.
  6. Stir in chocolate chips and walnuts.
  7. Drop dough onto cookie sheet using a medium dough scoop or tablespoon.
  8. Bake about 15 minutes or until the edges are slightly brown.
  9. Let cool on pan 2 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.

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