Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Wow! What a day! We had met everyone at the gate and brought them to my house. Lilly and her husband were patiently waiting for us to get there. We set up our finger foods outside on three tables and moved the fireplace to the front yard. Everyone changed over into their costumes and started eating. As we were standing outside talking and having our party, trick or treaters were a little confused, they thought we had set up the party for them! They were trying to get a bite of our food! Thank you to the husbands who kept them away!Everyone looked so good in their costumes! The adults wore costumes as well as the kids. We had lots of little witches at our party. Kumie borrowed a witches hat and she was a pink and black witch, Migumi was a pirate like me! Elsa was Cruella Deville, Lilly wore a feathered mask, Eiko was a blonde she devil, Toshiko borrowed a green wig and looked soooo cute, and Kyoko was a cute little witch, too. Kyoko went off with Shelby to go trick or treating with the teenagers in the neighborhood. I am glad they got to spend some time with each other. Tomoko and Toshe were beautiful witches, also! Takumi was the handsomest Shrek and Diana was a very cute baseball player! We had around 40 people combined with Regina's group. The picture only shows some of our group. We headed out for Trick or Treating and came back to have smores in the fireplace. Everyone was having so much fun which made me very happy! Some of the adults had never dressed up before so they were able to experience something NEW, which is always exciting! Happy Halloween memories everyone!
Sunday, October 28, 2007
Friday, October 26, 2007
Monday, October 22, 2007
I just made my center piece for my cooking class! I think it turned out just gorgeous!!! Elsa and I worked on it today, after shopping for the arrangement pieces. We were able to mix mostly real with some faux plants. Most of the pieces came from out in town. The real plants came from D-Plaza garden shop and the faux from a little shop in downtown Iwakuni. I am using one of my picnic baskets from Longaberger to hold it all.
My gift to them are "Chocolate, Toffee Glazed Almond, Caramel Apples." When I was thinking about my theme and the gift, I had thought about my childhood and my mother had made candied apples for us for Halloween. I remember it very well and it was a special memory for me. I loved them so much! I thought I would share my childhood experience with them, too.
"Gourmet Caramel Apples"
6 Granny Smith apples
6 wooden sticks (I used chopsticks and wrapped ribbon around it)
1 (14 ounce) package individually wrapped caramels, unwrapped
2 tablespoons water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Insert wooden sticks 3/4 of the way into the stem end of each apple. Place apples on a cookie sheet covered with lightly greased aluminum foil.
Combine caramels and water in a saucepan over low heat. Cook, stirring often, until caramel melts and is smooth. Stir in the vanilla. Dip each apple into the caramel and gently run apples around insides of saucepan to scrape off some of the caramel. Scrape excess caramel from the apple bottoms using the side of the saucepan.
4 ounces white chocolate, chopped
1 1/2 cups crushed graham crackers
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans, toasted
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Friday, October 19, 2007
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Sunday, October 14, 2007
Thursday, October 11, 2007
Shopping at "Yanagiya Decor"
I had seen this beautiful gift shop in downtown Iwakuni as I was shopping with my husband. I went in and found some very beautiful faux leaves and pumpkins to decorate our home for fall. The women there are so friendly and helpful, always smiling! I was so pleased by their products and service I had to go back and bring one of my friends to see it. Elsa and I went to the gift shop yesterday and I showed her what all they had there. She loved it so much she bought a bunch of things, also. When we were checking out, the Japanese ladies asked if we would take pictures of what we bought when we put it together. I gave her my card and hope she can see this post. We will surely be coming back again and again! Domo Arigato Yanagiya Decor!
Tuesday, October 9, 2007
We made our boxes and candles today! I was so excited to teach the candle technique. It really is amazing. The results are beautiful! Everyone did a wonderful job! I just hope they will try to make some of those darling candles at home. You can do it! You proved it today. The directions to the 2,4,6,8 box and the candles are below.
1. Cut a sheet of cardstock in half that is 8 1/2" X 11" inches. It will now measure 8 1/2" x 5 1/2" inches.
2. Stamp sheet as desired.
3. Score the paper at 2", 4", 6" and 8" along the 8 1/2" length side of cardstock piece. You will have a 1/2" section left over.
4. Turn cardstock piece 90 degrees, and score entire length of cardstock at the 2" mark. (Your scoring blade will travel 8-1/2" down. The 5 1/2" side of cardstock piece will be against the bottom lip of your paper cutter).
5. Look at your scored cardstock piece. Take scissors and trim off the 2" x 1/2" section (not the 3 1/2" x 1/2" section). *Note: The 3 1/2" x 2" sections are the box top and the 2" x 2" sections are the box bottom.
6. Cut each 2" score mark along the 8 1/2" side. (You will be making three straight cuts, each along the 2" score marks). Do not cut beyond the long score mark running the length of the 8 1/2" side.
7. Fold along all score marks.
8. Place a section of sticky strip tape along the 3 1/2" x 1/2" flap on the decorated/stamped side. Seal the top part of the box closed.
9. Fold up the four 2" x 2" pieces; this is the bottom of your box. Use a sticky strip on the last 2" x 2" piece to seal the bottom of the box. Now decorate and fill your box!
Candle - preferably white or cream
Aqua painter pen
Step 1. Stamp on vellum paper. Use images that can be colored-in, in the ink color of your choice.
Step 2. Color in stamped images using reinkers and Aqua painter pens. you will want to make sure your Aqua painter is not very wet but has a fair amount of reinker on it.
Step 3. Cut out your stamped images fairly close to the edges.
Step 4. Take a piece of wax paper and cut it so that it is not any taller than the candle being used and long enough so that it wraps completely around the candle and then some.
Step 5. Take your first stamped image and place it on the candle. Then place the wax paper on top and wrap the wax paper around the candle. Tape, making sure the wax paper is tight against the candle.
Step 6. Heat up your embossing gun for 30-40 seconds until it is nice and hot. Moving quickly, wave it over the area where the stamped image is; be sure to keep the wax paper nice and tight. Every candle will have a different wax melting point, but you should see a change begin to take place within a few seconds. As the candle heats up, the pressure from the wax paper should push the image into the melting wax of the candle, embedding the image and leaving your image intact.
Slowly peel the wax paper off the candle. Remember: every brand is different so if you are switching between brands you may need to adjust your heating times a bit.
Step 7. Finish your candle.
You can do numerous images on one candle; just place another image and move the wax paper. It is best to try and not use the same spot on the wax paper for each image, but you can use 1 piece of wax paper numerous times.