Most dog owners would agree that dogs are the center of our lives. Even if we have human children, dogs can sometimes become the favorite child! I mean they don’t complain, you can leave them home alone, they don’t talk back, I think you get it. When your child has a birthday, we go out of our way to throw extravagant birthday parties. Pets deserve at least a little dog birthday party that includes some of their favorite dog birthday cakes, buddies and maybe a few gifts. Here are some tips on how to host an inexpensive dog birthday party. Head to the end of this post for a chance to win a $100 Food Lion Gift Card!!!
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When the kids were young, it was fun and easy to through elaborate birthday parties at our home. I wish I was blogging when the kids were young as we had some really fun ideas. Once the boys turned 8, it became a little more challenging to have a large party at the house. This is about the time I started seeking out the best Birthday Party Ideas for Active Kids.
While it was fun throwing the cutesy parties at home with all the homemade crafts, foods and activities, it never seemed busy enough to keep active boys and girls occupied for the duration of the party. When I was younger, there were not many options for birthday parties outside of the house, there was the ice rink, roller rink, and bowling. Today parents who want to throw parties for the active kids in their life have more choices. Here are some of the Best Birthday Party Ideas for Active Kids.
My kids are getting to the age that I can no longer do the cutesy themed birthday parties I so love doing. For my 9-year-old, this will be his last big party and then it will be just a few kids over for dinner and movies from here forward. My son loves fishing so when I found a local company that picks up the kids from my house, takes them to a private lake with all the equipment and all I had to do was pack a cooler, send cupcakes and my husband, I was all over it. However, for my second son, my husband was not going to be there so I added a few new fishing party ideas.
Birthday Parties are a blast for kids, and as a parent, I find them fun to plan. It is a lot of work though, and there is a lot to take into consideration. I like to make the treats for my kids’ parties so that I know exactly what they and their friends are eating. With all of the intolerances and allergies out there today (along with the different opinions on what is healthy) it can be difficult to find something that everyone can eat, so I always
put together a mix of easy, healthy snacks.
I get it is hard to plan a winter birthday party because you can’t be outside but it can be challenging to have a summer birthday party too. Kids complain it is too hot, afternoon thunderstorms threaten parties mosquitos, etc. The weather gods blessed us this year and I am able to share these summer birthday party ideas with you. (It rained nonstop for a week before)!! Thanks to House Party, NERF and CHEETOS Brand, my 7-year-old celebrated with his friends with one of the best party ideas I have had. Best being easiest, my 9-year-old even commented on the easy clean up!
My 4 year old has had a sudden interest with race cars. Not Nascar but anything “Hot Wheels” or “Matchbox”. Their generation is so branded now that he went through all of our cars and picked out the ones with those labels and refuses to play with the other ones. Race Car Birthday Party
So naturally a race car party was an easy decision this year. We had it at home and it really was economical and entertaining for the 8 birthday kids here.
Do you bake a puppy cake for a dog birthday? This year our pup did not have her traditional dog birthday. I know it sounds crazy but I usually make a dog birthday cake or dog cupcake recipe and give them to some of the neighbor dogs on her birthday which also happens to be National Dog Day. Don’t be shy to throw an inexpensive Birthday for your dog.
Knowing that most of her pup friends were out of town this year, I was thrilled to find an Impossibly Easy Four Ingredient Dog Birthday Cake for One. As much as Chloe would like to enjoy a piece of a dog safe cake daily, this was the best option to keep her weight in check.
If your dog has grain issues, this is a grain free dog cake recipe!
You have picked a fishing party for your child. You have probably already seen the Fishing Party Food post we did.Now for fun fishing birthday party favors. The kids are old enough they do especially need to big gifts. I thought the gift of being outside and fishing with friends was a great gift. But who can resist party favors for about $1.25 each? When we first hosted this party for my older child I made the same party favors but this time around I updated the tag and made a free fishing party printable for my readers. This post contains affiliate links.
Fishing Party – Party Favors for Kids
No need to look any further for a homemade dog treat recipes we have a great list here. Our family does not serve our dog a raw food diet, but we do like to make homemade treats and snacks on occasion. Your pet deserves the best when it comes to getting the homemade treats that are not all fillers but ingredients that you know. We have decided to compile
The Ultimate List of Dog Approved Homemade Dog Treat Recipe, Homemade Dog Birthday Cakes not only approved by our very own Chloe but from other dog owners and bloggers that we thought you might enjoy.
From Birthday Dinner parties to Cookie Exchange parties, I love having a party favor to thank my guests for taking time out of their day to join me for these occasions. While I do not go over board, they are simple but thoughtful tokens. There is something special about a coming home with a little reminder of an event.
This shop about creating a spooky witch themed Halloween party has been compensated by Collective Bias and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SpookySnacks #CollectiveBias
My daughter’s birthday falls in the beginning of October, and this year, she had a few girls over for dinner. This was a perfect excuse to turn a regular party into a Spooky Witch Themed Halloween party, well the dessert at least. A 14 year old has her own expectations, but Mom can create some fun things for her while she is at school and can’t complain! With a few simple ingredients, OREOs and Fanta, we created some spooky snacks, including witch hats, witch brooms and witches’ brew. Be sure to check out the Fanta Floats we made for Halloween last year.
The J.M. Smucker Company sent me free product samples and asked me to blog about the ultimate sundae bar #SundaeFundae.
My youngest turned 8 earlier this month, for his birthday party we served these awesome Ice Cream Tacos. He has a tough time making choices sometimes so when I asked him for his family birthday cake choice, he kept going back and forth. I tried to have him look on Pinterest with me, and we finally came up with a combination that I think we all enjoyed, this Sprinkle Birthday Cake Recipe. Basically a yellow cake recipe with added sprinkles and a white cream cheese frosting recipe.
This post brought to you by Sam’s Club. All opinions are 100% mine.
Ok Cat owners out there, we all know you love your cats but they can get moody just like humans. Grab your Grumpy cat and your camera and get ready to celebrate Friskies® Grumpy Cat’s Birthday. For Grumpy Cat’s Birthday Party Friskies® is throwing him a party! What do you need at any cat party? Friskies® Party Mix! Ok and maybe some other cat and dog friends too and maybe a stray mole or vole.
The blog has gone to the dogs, well maybe just this post for now. Thanks to ALPO for supplying us with a fun party pack to get our #HappyStartsHere dog party ideas in motion. All the opinions expressed are 100% my own. While we love having people parties around here, Chloe decided it was time to entertain some friends for a dog food testing, even if it was not her dog birthday party. The fun part was getting the adults to start thinking dog!
How to throw a Firefly Party is part of a sponsored post. “This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and All You, but all my opinions are my own. #lifeforless #pmedia http://cmp.ly/3/8vNxcO
If you follow Close to Home regularly you know my love of entertaining and having themed parties. However this can be very expensive and I am always looking for new and creative ways to entertain on a budget!! I recently found the magazine, ALL YOU, at our Food Lion store. I was amazed at how many money-saving tips they have in this magazine. Not only do they share money-saving tips for grocery shopping and meal planning, but also useful money-saving tips on everyday living such as health, home, and beauty.
As busy moms we all need a nice break from our daily grind. Getting everyone to commit to going to a spa for treatments is expensive and you probably would not get much time to talk. Thanks to Aveeno I was able to celebrate my birthday with a few friends and treat them to a spa party at home.
I sent the boys out on a hunt to find some bamboo. Really it was just an excuse to get them out of my hair. By the end of the morning they had brought back a few stripped stalks that I displayed outside to set the spa atmosphere at home. I used smaller pieces of bamboo in vases around the house.
- Add 1 /2 cup Epsom salt
- 1/2 cup Sea Salt ( i purchased coarse)
- 10 drops of Peppermint oil
In my opinion, no Christmas party is complete without Christmas Games. I think most of us dread having that bridal or wedding shower that the hostess would bring out the games. Well, Christmas parties are a great time to bring those games out again and break up the eating and chatting. I am not saying I am not social, but you can actually learn a lot about someone by watching them play a game.
Here are some great tried and true Holiday Party Games to play at any holiday party. We love to play games for our annual Christmas Party: Cookie Exchange. All of these Holiday games have been done there with much success. People have to get out of their safety net when you bring out the holiday party games. Have fun!
My dining table was converted into a crafting table with supplies provided by both House Party and myself. They graciously provided the Kleenex Hand Towels and these cute soap party favors. But what are they possibly doing with these things. First they helped themselves to some lunch of Tortilla Soup if you read the Soup post you will know they all arrived about 45 minutes before me!! Email slip. Always proofread your emails.
DO THEY WORK? Here is our birthday girl once again making her soap product, which kept her hands green for several hours after this?
Ok, it is party time for the pups. Just look at these adorable dog friends of Chloe!! I thought I’d introduce you to her friends: The other Golden, Tucker, is her uncle! The black and white Dog, Wilson, her boyfriend, and the brown one, Franky, her other friend in the neighborhood. If it is too hot to bake try some Frozen Homemade Dog Treats & Dog Cakes
I found these invitation ideas on Etsy and realized I could easily make them at home. I did not have the correct hole punch so I had to cut around a spiked circle to make it look like Legos.
I bought a bunch of balloons, streamers, plates etc in primary colors. Super simple. My kids made this sign on the large lego board we have.
Each place setting had a mini creator set activity to do. I used paper plates as the building platform to keep the pieces from getting mixed up with another friends.
ACTIVITIES: We were going to have a bounce house since I was hosting a neighborhood party later that day but the weather’s forecast caused me to cancel the party and thus cancel the bounce house. I was a little worried at first but it turned out just fine.
The kids kept active putting together their kits. My older children were instructed to be helpers.
They played a few lego relays building towers and just some free play at the beginning . My daughter came up with a lego person game that each child had to put together a person and then they were judged on different criteria.
Each child had the kit and the candy to take home and no one got restless except for the last 10 minutes which the rain finally settled and they were able to run outside. It was the perfectly timed party and despite the weather everyone had fun.
Well the day finally came to host the Zatarain’s Mardi Gras HouseParty. I had already made the Decorations, attempted a King Cake, and delivered masks to the guests to decorate for a friendly competition.
I adorned my vases with extra masks and beads to add extra flair.
I set my IPhone on Pandora and streamed a Zydeco station through our system. Really set the mood.
Instead of investing in hurricane glasses, I researched some traditional New Orleans drinks. We served Pimms Cups, basically a favorite from London Pimms and lemonade, and mint juleps. I had found some beers made in Louisiana at World Market. Also served wine at dinner.
Because the box was rather sparse with ingredients to feed the recommended 14 guests, I asked people to bring some of their favorite New Orleans dishes. Lucky for us we had fried oysters and an amazing hot jalapeno cheese dip for appetizers. Some folks added that dip to the oysters for a truly decadent appetizer.
|House Party Contents|
For the main course, I made the jambalaya recipe that was sent to me but added some chicken. I doubled the recipe to feed 10 adults.
It came out tasty, and tender so easy.
Prepared the Red Beans and Rice per the package directions for the microwave. Someone complained they were too sticky.
Each guest left the party with their own box of Zatarain’s Rice Mix. I used the coupons given to me to use as party favors and per the suggestion of the Houseparty conversations, went to Kroger and purchased them instead. Only 50 cents a box!! Most of the guests were already familiar with the product.
Here are the masks of some of the guests…not all participated in this part.
Who do you think won??
Overall I think the guests had a wonderful time and were very festive. It’s not too late to create a fun and easy Mardi Gras party
Here she is and we even added Cinnamon since we were making it for breakfast.
|Sun Dried Tomato|
Thank You MommyParty for letting me host this Great Event!
|My Hostess gift and Loaf friends made|
Let the games begin. I love coming up with ideas for themed parties, I search the internet and try to improvise other games to match themes. Coming up with Star Wars Party Games and Activities took no effort. The Death Star Pinata, however, needs some prior planning but it was such a hit. Be sure to check out the Star Wars Party Invitations we made too.
While we waited for all the kids to arrive and to make them comfortable so their folks could leave, we had out my son’s star wars figurines and legos. The kids were encouraged to put together a spaceship. I also had a Star Wars coloring book and crayons but it went untouched.
It is funny how children can get hooked on different things, even with minimal exposure. There was no question that my now 5 year old wanted a Star Wars party even though he had never seen the movies.
Exposure from books and action figures brought about this obsession. I must admit I was a Star Wars Fan back in the late 70’s 80s when the original 3 were released. I remember as an adult when they were re-released hopping movie theaters with my mom to watch 2 episodes.
I searched on line for invitations and found a few ideas through both etsy and ebay and decided to blend the two.
What most kids think about when they think of Star Wars is Light Saber duals.
What you need for these:
Silver shimmer card stock
Card stock in green, blue or red (depending on whether you like the dark or light side!)
Duck Tape rolls or sheets in red, blue and black, I found these at Ben franklin and they are the best. You could also used colored tape.
Printer paper for inside details
Document size envelopes
Simply cut out a rectangle about 7 1/2 by 4 1/4inches of the shimmery paper. This is you handle. Fold in half.
Cut out a light saber shapre from the colored paper about 10″ x 3 1/2
Glue light saber inside the folded silver card.
Create the details of the party, I used graphics I found on line for star war legos and you can also find star wars fonts on line.
Our Details went like this.
“Yoda has called out to Padawan “birthday Boy” to seek out future Jedi…
You were selected
The Trials are being held at Address, date time
Notify the council of your attendence
Decorate the out side of the handle with 3 black strips of tape and 2 blue dots.
Use the document envelopes and I folded them in half since the invitations seemed so small inside.
Add a few stickers addressed to the Padawan guest.
There will be no question what the party theme will be for this one.
Party Details in next post.
Now that you have your new menu item for the Super Bowl, Walking Tacos, how about some games to entertain your guests. If you are a true fan of football, right now you are thinking, games the only games I will be watching is that on the TV. For the rest of you who just watch the game because that is where your family or friends are sitting that night, how about introducing some fun games to entertain you!!
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commissions 16 CFR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Tomoson Product review & giveaway Disclosure.
Whether you are throwing a little get together at your house or just need some ideas for a class party, here are some tried and tested activities and treats.
I borrowed this idea from a friend’s son’s birthday party. We all have decorated pumpkins before but how fun for the kids to use cut outs from magazines for noses, mouths or eyes. I had my older kids browse through the recyclable magazines in search for larger sized body parts. At the dollar store I was able to find boas to cut up for the hair and packages of googley eyes. Using just Elmers glue here are some of the creations.
To traditional pin the nose, eye or mouth on the pumpkin, your choice. If you have an uncarved pumpkin large enough you can do it right on that.
How about Ghost wind socks. Again I got all the supplies at the dollar store and I made them a little smaller so I could cut out 12 heads out of one poster board. Simply cut out stirps of the white poster board at your preferred length and width. Cut strips of white streamers-2 rolls in a pkg for $1. Simply tape the streamers to the back of the poster board. Have the child decorate the front with marker. Staple the poster board in a circle and then tape or staple a large piece of yarn for a hanger. How fun to have these around your house hanging from a light fixture or fan?
Hot Pumpkin of course is an old and easy favorite. Played the same as hot potato but using a pumpkin of course. Make sure you have a treat available after the kids get out!
Any fun but messy game is Monster Hands. Basically the kids fill a glove with candycorns as finger nails and popcorn in the rest. Tie up the open end and it looks like a monster hand. The dollar store surprised me again by having packages of them in several colors this year. You can also give them as a party favor in a classroom.
Pumpkin Scavenger Hunt, for an outside party one year I had an abundant amount of acorns. I took a little jar of acrylic paint and painted half of several acorns around the yard. The kids then had to find the orange ones and race to fill buckets. The kids were occupied and I had a simple chore completed!
Build a skeleton relay. (probably not for a classroom as you need a lot of room)
Cut out a skeleton templete and have a relay with the kids with each child running to the other end to complete the skeleton correctly. First team with a completed skeleton wins.
For a yummy and quick lunch or light dinner how about Jamaican pumpkin soup. I found this recipe on Crockpot365.blogspot.com. I used an emulsion blender right in the crock pot and made the entire soup smoothe. Also I left out the half and half and let each guest add their own amount.
Simply lay out a refrigerated bread stick on ungreased cookie sheet. Put a line of mustard down each stick. Then add 1/2 inch strip of sandwich meat, I used turkey, colby cheese and honey mustard, but any combo would work. Then add another breadstick on top and pinch them together. Score the knuckles and nail bed. Then mix a egg yolk with food coloring and fill in the finger nail. Bake at 350 for 12-15 minutes. I allowed my to come to room temperature but you can serve warm as well. The left overs are going into my kids lunch boxes!
One of the biggest features of Golden Retrievers is their soft golden coat. If you happen to run into a Golden who’s coat is not soft, there is a chance their not getting the correct nutrients to maintain a healthy coat. After a recent surgery, the vet had to shave a big portion of Chloe’s head. Hope it grows back before her dog birthday party. We want to be sure this comes back strong and healthy so began switching her food to AvoDerm® Dog Food. Avocados are such a super food for humans, did you know they’re packed with a lot of the nutrients your pet needs?
Calling all Star Wars Fans, we have a place to add to your bucket list! My husband is not a Disney Fan, I took him for the first time at age 35. He never watched the Star Wars Movies I went to double features when the original movies were rereleased in the 90’s with my mom. It is a miracle we are still married after 17 years. With these differences, we have not planned any Disney Family vacations that were not involving grandparents and kids. As participant of the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration, I was able to discover a whole new element of Disney World beyond Mickey and Minnie. My son and I discovered why Star Wars Fans have new reason to Visit Disney World.
Popcorn is such a versatile food. From decorating with popcorn in the fall to eating at the movie theater. However if you recently did a search on Pinterest for flavored popcorn recipes you would see a lot more than just butter and salt.
Since we are big popcorn people and I have experimented in the past with different flavored varieties I thought we would celebrate National Popcorn Day with a round up of some of my favorite looking and tasty flavored popcorn recipes . I have also seen the value of paying for the more expensive popcorn. I have purchased the store brand before and everyone notices it. Sometimes it tastes stale. Only buy as much as you can reasonably go thru as well. If not stored properly popcorn can get stale and you will taste it in the end product.
This shop about Minions Movie Snack Mix Recipe has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #MinionsMovieNight #CollectiveBias
This summer we missed going to see Minions © 2015 Universal Studios. All rights reserved. It was just released December 8th, and I picked up a copy for our winter road trips or a winter movie night. I love making themed foods for our movie nights so I decided to create a fun Minions Movie Snack Mix Recipe. I just can’t resist those adorable characters and I love to hear their voices while I am driving and my kids are watching one of the Despicable Me movies from Illumination Entertainment. What a clever group of writers. This movie would also make a great stocking stuffer that the whole family can enjoy.
It’s ok to admit you might like Star Wars as much as I do. I mean I don’t go around dressed like Princess Lei but I sure get excited for all the new Star War Movies.
This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #FoodAwakens #CollectiveBias
Growing up, my family were huge Star Wars™ fans. We watched movies 4,5 and 6 over and over again. I remember when the movies were re-released, my mom and I actually skipped from one movie theater to the next. We had all of the moveable plastic characters, some of which I gave to my sons when they were younger. In fact, I think I sort of encouraged my boys interest in Star Wars™, as I threw a Star Wars™ birthday party for one of them and loved creating everything from Star Wars™ invitations to Star Wars™ party food.
Now that the new generation of movies are coming out, I am trying to bring back their excitement by creating this yummy Star Wars™ Popcorn Mix using the fun Star Wars™ Honey Nut Cheerios®.
I was provided with promotional item in exchange for this post about back to school labels from Minted.com.
We are still enjoying a few weeks of summer, but getting our back to school supplies early is a high priority for us. While we had labels for camp made this summer, have a C or B Long would not cut it for easily identifying our kids school supplies. Minted is excited to announce the launch of our brand new custom kids name labels! Perfect for summer camps, back to school, or nursery school organization! They are waterproof, dishwasher safe, non-toxic and are customizable with kids names and some with photos.
When I think of fun indulgence, this Oreo Ice Cream Cake Recipe is on the top of my list. There is nothing so delicious as a chocolate and ice cream dessert. Add in one of my all-time favorite cookies, and you have me drooling.
When the kids got home from camp this year, I was excited to welcome them home with a special treat. Their camp does not serve dessert so I know they were craving something sweet and cool. I happened to have some OREO’s and vanilla ice cream on hand so this ice cream cake recipe sounded like the perfect summer dessert recipe. This is a super easy, no bake recipe, all you need is a little advance time to allow for the ice cream to refreeze.
Our golden retriever, Chloe, turned 3 last week, or I guess technically 21 in dog years, so I decided to make her this homemade dog cake recipe. A dog cake recipe? Yes! We believe in having fun and including Chloe, and this was a fun and silly way to celebrate her life.
If you have been reading this blog at all, you know she is one of the family and we often will pick travel destinations so we can bring her along. While she is not new to homemade dog treats and homemade doggie cakes, I picked a new homemade dog cake recipe to try for this birthday. No dog party this year. We just stopped over at her boyfriend’s house and shared a slice of our dog cake.
This year my son declined to have a birthday party so we agreed to him just have a couple boys spend the night. We decided that homemade ice cream recipes inside our waffle ice cream tacos would be just the right treat or the boys to enjoy! I knew they loved ice cream tacos, so this was surely going to be a big hit! My kids almost always get the chico tacos from the ice cream truck, now they can get them at home and we know what exactly is inside of them. If you don’t have a pizzelle maker, you might be out of luck or you can purchase one for under $50. Your kids will definitely love their homemade ice cream tacos and have fun changing up the flavor combinations.
This post about sinus infections is sponsored by Sverve and @SUDAFED. Sinus infections are the worse. I have gone to the dentist before heading to the GP thinking I had a cavity. You know that awful sinus pain that makes your teeth hurt? I don’t usually don’t think to take my allergy medicine until it is too late and then I find myself suffering from the annoying sinus pain and congestion.
I have been making my kid’s birthday party invitations for as long as I can remember. Of course I used some Evites along the way but there is something fun and unique about a fun party themed invitation. I recently was able to review the XYRON Creative Station, 5inch series and I am addicted. Where was this 11 years ago? Close to Home was recently chosen a host for the DisneySide Parties this February and I wanted to make Mickey Mouse Invitations using my new XYRON Creative Station.
I can not even count the number of NERF toys we have had through the ages. I am probably sitting on a little foam bullet right now. I think they are such well made toys and really entertain the kid without too much electronics involved. I have especially loved the NERF Night Vision football and basketball series they came out with last year. Even though it has batteries, the kids are out playing sports.
I love NERF so much we had my son’s 7th birthday party a NERF party. Water shooters was the theme, perfect for a summer birthday. They kids ran off all their sugar. Everyone I think absolutely LOVED IT. Is it awful to repeat the same birthday theme?
Thanks to Pleygo and US Family for sponsoring this post about LEGO subscription services for kids.
As a mother of 2 boys who love LEGOs I was intrigued by this new company Pleygo and very curious to see how this LEGO exchange company would work. I have two different types of LEGO players at home, the create and break child and the Create and keep child. So what is Pleygo you might be asking…….
Why I started Blogging…
When I started thinking about starting a blog in 2009 and initially composing some notes, I began to look more closely at where I may have gotten the knack for entertaining and “homemaking” if you may. Please, I am no Martha Stewart, as I do not iron and am not a perfectionist and lord knows, I make a lot of kitchen and craft mistakes. We won’t even get into my parenting mistakes! Contact via email at [email protected]
You can tell I miss her but I want everyone to be able to find some comfort close to their home and hearts and carry on traditions both old and new.
The reason I started blogging was that I often found myself on the phone with a friend or family member discussing a dinner party menu or birthday party ideas. After being a stay at home mom for 8 years, I was also looking for an outlet. Since starting this blog and getting all the children in school full time, I started substitute teaching and tutoring but I still love to blog. At Close to Home LLC you will find recipes I have subjected my family to, crafts done with and for the children, entertaining both adults and children, especially around the holidays, various trips we have taken, as well as family friendly product reviews and giveaways.
Now that the kids are older we have found traveling more exciting and we also share some great travel locations we have gone as a family, as a couple and with girlfriends.
So grab a cup of coffee and browse for some great ideas to keep you closer to home, with out breaking the bank. Our goal is providing other moms with ideas that are both inspiring and attainable.
I have 3 children, ages 11, 14 and 16 , a golden retriever, a cat and a loving husband living in Richmond, VA
Contact via email at [email protected] We are happy to send our media kit.
Close to Home LLC is PR FRIENDLY and will gladly review any family friendly products.
My Sweet Pets:
Meet Julie Stribling: Our Contributor
Julie is a military brat so if you ever want to get into a really long conversation, ask her where she’s from! In 2016, she and her husband moved from Silicon Valley to Richmond, VA, seeking a simpler life. They found it and are loving Richmond with their three daughters (ages 9, 7 and 5) and son (age 2). Julie enjoys reading, yoga, soccer, and when her children nap!
I am a proud affliate of the following:
I was sitting in a doctors office last week and started browing country living magazine I think it was and found this great recipe for Tripple Dipped SMores Apples. I have made caramel apples before, check out my recipe about a caramel apple bar. Fun way to dress up an old favorite and everyone gets what they want. I was a little skeptical about making these as my kids tend to stick to their favorites but I went ahead and purchased the ingredients and decided to only make 3 incase things did not work out or they went to waste if they did not taste good.
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.
Blueberry Greek Yogurt Smoothie Popsicles for Kids are a great way to get kids to eat fruit. I was searching for a smoothie recipe and really wanted to make something with the ingredients I had on hand. I usually have tons of frozen bananas in the freezer but I had recently made muffins so that was out. I found this Greek Yogurt and Blueberry Smoothie recipe from Hey Donna.com. She used it for popsicles but we enjoyed them in a glass.
|Think he liked it!|
Blueberry Greek Yogurt Popsicles
I am taking a break from food treats and make something for my daughters many crafts. I had some felt leftover from birthday party craft and have seen felt flowers on the web. Simply cut out 3 or 4 heart shapes in descending sizes. I used a little embroidery floss and made a little adornment around the biggest one. Then connect them all by sewing on a button.
Basically you are making a very large heart barrette and attaching it to a ribbon headband. I can just image what fun this will be for other holidays as well. I wish I could keep her young for a longer time.
But, instead of making the heart a permanent headband, I glued it on to an alligator clip so she can take it on and off the woven headbands. I may have to come up with so more cute designs for adornments.
For more woven headband options, you can check out my other webpage with examples. My poor daughter has these in so many colors and we often give them as birthday gifts for younger kids too.
Well if I don’t have to decorate another cupcake for a while I will be thrilled. Between my children’s birthdays I did 5 different designs in 3 weeks. The last two batches were not homemade..If they are only for kids I don’t mind and if you have an milk allergy there are some specific ones that are dairy free, so no thinking.
This month Barefoot Bloggers had 2 cake recipes. Being a month with a birthday in our family I was not too concerned. I have made this Beatty’s Chocolate Cake by Ina Garten before and it was always a hit, Very moist and chocolaty. However, this time since I had just made the humongous cake the week before I thought how about Cupcakes that 1/2 could be used for my son’s birthday party and the other 1/2 for a meeting my husband was having at the house.
When I started thinking about starting a blog and composing some notes, I began to look more closely at where I may have gotten the knack for entertaining and “homemaking” if you may. Please, I am no Martha Stewart, as I do not iron and am not a perfectionist. Wanted to share this article: Back to My Roots The Reason I Started Blogging so you know where I am got my inspiration to start blogging.
I am hoping to make a blog to express some of these things and share with others. Staying close to home means a lot of different things but mainly that your home is where you plant your roots.
You have packed the bathing suits, toothpaste and an extra pair of shoes, but I bet you have forgotten to back some of the most important items to avoid trying to find a pharmacy at your vacation destination. Here are some first aid supplies to take on any vacation that we hope you won’t have to use but it does not cost much and you’ll be relieved at 1:00 AM when your child wakes up with a fever or someone falls and scrapes their knee on a hike that you have some of these supplies. Be sure to enter the $100 Food Lion Gift Card at the bottom this post!
This is a sponsored post thru Savings.com and an exclusive Blue Bunny ice cream cake printable coupon! #CelebrateWithBB. Bunny Tracks Ice Cream Cake For Any Occasion!
Recently we made an amazing Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie using Blue Bunny Ice cream. Sometimes we don’t have the time or energy to make something from scratch. We have the solution for you. Did you know you can get the same great flavors of Blue Bunny Ice cream in a pre-made cake? We found two amazing flavors at our Walmart and wanted to share how delicious they were and how easy you can dress them up for any occasion.
Once the weather turns warm, you can always find a few gallons of ice cream in my freezer. It is an easy dessert but my kids love to make milkshakes, ice cream cakes and ice cream pies. For my son’s birthday this past weekend, I thought I would make him a Peanut Butter Fudge Sundae Pie using the new Blue Bunny® PB ‘N Cones™. Ice cream pies take no time and are so much cheaper to make at home than buying them at a store, plus they are a highlight to any summer BBQ or party.
Texas Sheet Cake Recipe- Cake for a Crowd post may contain affiliate links.
We love making cakes, especially for our family’s birthdays. However, we are looking for a quick dessert to feed a crowd and don’t have time to let the cake layers cool and then assemble the cake, a Texas sheet cake is the perfect solution. Not many cakes can you pour the frosting over a warm cake. This is a forget it and go type recipe, that even my 15-year old baked all on her own. This cake is baked in a 10×13 baking pan and is very dense in flavor that you can easily serve 20 people off one cake. I think I would even make this for a dessert buffet and just cut it into bite-size portions for a wonderful bite of chocolate. Making desserts for a crowd does not have to be hard, just get an arsenal of great recipes.
Did you know National Dog Day is August 26th. Ironically Our golden retriever, Chloe’s birthday is the same day. This year she turns five. Where has the time gone? So to celebrate a birthday day for dogs and National Dog Day, we made her another yummy homemade dog cupcake recipe. A dog cake recipe? Yes! We believe in having fun and including Chloe, and this was a fun and silly way to celebrate her life. If you have been reading this blog at all, you know she is one of the family and we often will pick travel destinations so we can bring her along. While she is not new to homemade dog treats and homemade doggie cakes, I picked a new DOG BIRTHDAY CUPCAKE to try for this birthday. [Read more…]
When the summer comes, you have to entertain and teach your children,but not the traditional school type stuff. They do not beg you at least now with the words “Write my essay for me or help me with some projects” but who need more attention than usually. In addition, you will have some photos to add to your family photo album and experience to add to memories. Be creative and choose the most interesting approaches to teach your kids preschool and they will probably write about the perfectly spent summer in their school themes. This article can help you to organize the summer time with your children by choosing the most fun summer educational activities!
Wishing you all a wonderful Easter Weekend. Maybe some of you are on Spring Break or getting ready to start. Spring is in the air in Richmond, and I already have my first bout of poison ivy. I am personally getting ready for next friday, April Fools Day Pranks and will be sharing some this week and next. Personally my favorite holiday, its also my birthday. Thanks for joining us this week.
My mind is already on Spring Break and I forgot to get this up sooner. Let’s get this party started!
With all these snow days I have started to think of Valentine’s Day projects and foods to make with the kids. Here is an amazing list of Valentine’s Day Crafts and Foods to keep busy . Love is in the air! Valentine’s Day is around the corner and the Social Fabric Community has put together the Ultimate Valentine’s Day Round-Up to help you prepare for the season of love. From tutorials to crafts to delicious recipes, we have something for everyone. We dare you not to fall in love with these ideas!
My boys and husband are really into fishing. Several years ago we threw my middle son a fishing party. The kind that you rent a guide and actually fish. Be sure to check out the fun fishing party cupcakes and fishing party favors. I never know what to do for my tweens on Valentine’s Day so I thought I would incorporate one their favorite pastimes into this fun candy tackle box Valentine. Print out Valentine printables for an easy valentines like these tackle boxes or these gum themed valentines.
Trying to keep desserts in moderation I thought I would make this favorite easy key lime pies recipe into something with extra protein and in a small portion. This helps me manage to stay in my healthier eating plan, and of course, keeps the flavors amazing. If you are looking for a great recipe to serve at your next party, or just to keep on hand and help you stay in calorie budget for your diet plan, this is the best recipe to choose! Such bright and yummy flavors make it a hit with everyone! Plus they make great desserts for a crowd.
This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #InsideOutEmotions#CollectiveBias
This summer, my mom took the kids and me to see Inside Out at the movie theater. All three generations truly loved the movie. This week, our family had two different parent-teacher conference days, meaning the kids were home. Knowing Inside Out was available for purchase, I brought my youngest son to Walmart to buy it. As you might have realized, when I bring home a new DVD, I tend to create a little themed movie viewing party too. They are simple, but make a movie night (or afternoon in this case) a more memorable experience. Have you picked up the Inside Out DVD yet?
I am working with General Mills on this post about how to help your schools with Box Tops For Education bonus boxes.
Since my kids started Elementary School, our family does our best to cut the Box Tops for school. My middle son had an added interest the last two years when he was involved with student government. It was his job to count each box top collected and make sure that it was not expired. I must say this can be a tedious job, both cutting and counting and was thrilled to see the box top bonus currently going on.
Summer months bring about some of our favorite watermelon recipes. Whether it is at a local picnic, holiday barbecue, or just because this delicious fruit is the center of attention more often than not. Everyone seems to love the sweetness of this, and since they are so large, you an easily make 2-3 recipes from just one watermelon.
If your kids need some summer activities to get off the couch and active, we have some great ideas for you. Since the kids tend to get bored easily after that first few weeks off from school, it’s time to start encouraging them to get active.
It saddens me to think this generation is spending their summers not exploring their surroundings but valuing their self-worth based on how many likes they receive on an Instagram post. I encourage you, as I do my kids, to put the screens away and get your kids off the couch and exploring the joys of this list of summer activities. With tweens and teenagers, this can be almost impossible. They feel too old to hang out at the pool or play with chalk but there are ways to convince them otherwise.
I was provided with promotional items to facilitate this post about 50th Wedding Anniversary Decorations from Shindigz.com. All the opinions expressed are 100% my own.
Part of my trip back home this summer was to also get all the siblings and grandchildren together to celebrate our parent’s 50th Wedding Anniversary. We had not had everyone together in probably 5 years. That is really hard to believe. What do you give a couple for a 50th Anniversary present? We decided on hiring a professional photographer and having portraits done. This was a great excuse for our family to get some done as well since we have not had them done since my third child was born, he is 9 years old… The day we were able to coordinate all the family members to meet we were also going to host a luncheon to celebrate their anniversary. This is where I had to get creative with 50th anniversary decorations.
Now that Halloween is past us, many of us will be gearing up for Holiday Entertaining. I have collected a few Holiday Entertaining must haves to make this season of hosting parties less stressful. No matter what the size of the event, the most important part is having a plan. Whether it is a menu, caterer, or party games for kids, everyone will have more fun if you are organized from the beginning. You will soon be the hostess with the mostess.
This post about Recipes using Salts is sponsored by Mommy Parties and Morton Salt. Can you believe the Morton Salt Girl is 100 years old this year. Morton Salt has been in our household not quite 100 years but I can remember her picture in my parents and grandparents cupboards. In honor of her birthday, I am sharing some fun recipes using Salts for a fun birthday outing for some friends. I mixed up a few of the themes provided in our kit. Homemade Coffee Body Scrub Using Epson Salt
This post about BBQ Gift Basket is brought to you by Grate Chef, Inc.. All opinions are 100% mine.
My husband and I share the BBQ responsibilities at our house although he considers himself the grill master! He bought himself a heavy-duty grill a few years ago and it is about the size of a Volkswagen. Needless to say I believe any dad loves new tools whether for his work bench or his BBQ. I have put together the ultimate BBQ gift basket. This is a great hostess gift, birthday present or get ready for summer gift.
If you are like me, I always wait until the last minutes to buy greeting cards for family members, often forgetting until after I have already spoken to them. I am not sure why it is not a priority but it really is nice when I receive a greeting card from a friend or relative that says hey, I remembered you today. Facebook sort of took away the personal touch. Don’t mistake me, I love getting messages all day on Facebook but getting a personalized greeting cards is very special.
I have since taken this blog more seriously and still trying to find my niche that I enjoy the most. I love sharing successful and sometimes unsuccessful recipes. Being a parent with busy kids finding the time to cook healthy meals are so important. I do not make everything from scratch so these are not hard recipes just real food to give to your kids instead of running to the fast food or pulling something processed out of the freezer. Don’t get me wrong we all do this, just don’t want to make it a daily habit.
I also share a lot about entertaining tips such as kids birthday parties and having families over for fun nights out that don’t cost a lot. Family time is important to me but I do enjoy my time. Getting to the gym or taking a walk is a must for me and my family can tell if I have not.
Close to Home is also always on the look out for family friendly products that are great for pets, children and adults. I love items that make like easier and are well made. We provide a lot of product reviews and gift guides to help you make the right decisions before opening your wallets.
Our family loves to travel and recently we have been sharing our posts of our adventures, especially this summer. Give us a location and we will not sleep until we have experienced all that we have time for.
I look forward to being a part of this 2013 Back to School Social Party and hope you will join us too. You can find out more here and enjoy this e coupon code twentyFive for 25% off of the Tier 2 or Tier 3 passes. This is my first type of event like this and I am sure it will be great. Look forward to meeting more of you.
Just about anybody over 18 who enjoys socializing, blogging, and/or growing a brand. It’s NOT just for parent bloggers. Whether you blog about fashion, beauty, DIY projects, food, business, etc., you are welcome because this Event will be packed full of Social Media info and networking that can truly help your blogging journey succeed!
Looking for some creative ideas to celebrate 4th of July outside of traditional BBQ’s and Fourth Of July Fireworks. Here are some great ideas found around the blogging world that I wanted to share. Of course if you have not already seen my most recent 4th of July BBQ recipes Pin check it out here.
This is a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.
You know how much I love to bake and I am not afraid to use a box mix. Have you seen the adorable summer cake ideas Betty Crocker has created on their website? If not you are sure to get the inspiration to make something a little outside the box for any summer party birthday or just to celebrate the end of school. We recently modified this Close to Home Strawberry Cake recipe and made Strawberry Short Cake Cupcakes.
I am so thrilled to have Brandy guest post on Close to Home today. I have salivated over these desserts made in jars and now I am a little closer to trying them myself.
It’s no secret that I love the trend of desserts in jars. They are adorable, most of them easy to make and you can really customize them for each occasion. Not to mention the little idea of portion control is built in, if only they had self control built in as well.
One of the easiest desserts in a jar to make is no-bake cheesecake. The recipe I use is only 7 ingredients including the ingredients for the crust (which does get baked) and you can really mix it up with your own ingredients. Which brings me to my latest creation of Funfetti Cake Batter No-Bake Cheesecakes.
These little jars of deliciousness are easy to make and look amazing with such little effort. I used Funfetti because there is just something about that flavor of cake mix that I can not duplicate on my own. It’s not white cake, it’s not yellow cake; but it most certainly is delicious and fun! These are great for Birthday parties, Easter Brunch, bake sales you name it.
If Funfetti isn’t your flavor you don’t have to worry, any cake mix flavor will work. Strawberry, lemon, yellow and french vanilla have all been wonderful.
With no further ado let’s get busy making these delicious (how many times can I say that) fun sized desserts. Head to your cupboards to get these basic ingredients and let’s get mixing. You can easily cut this recipe in half which will make about 12 jars, a full recipe will make 25-28 jars. Make sure to use the Mason Jars – 125 mL – Decorative
Ingredients For Nilla Wafer Crust
- 1 11 oz box of Nilla Wafer Cookies
- 1/2 Cup Sugar
- 6 Tablespoons Butter (melted)
Directions To Make Nilla Wafer Crust
1. Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.
2. Crush Nilla wafer cookies in a food processor or by hand just like graham crackers.
3. Mix crushed cookies, sugar and melted butter together.
4. Use 2 tablespoons of mixture for each jar. Then mash it down into a flat crust. I used my espresso dampening tool. The small side fits in the jar perfectly.
5. Bake your crust filled jars for 7 minutes.
Ingredients For Cake Batter No-Bake Cheesecake Filling
- 2 8 oz cream cheese (softened)
- 2/3 cup lemon juice
- 2 14 oz cans of sweetened condensed milk
- 1 1/3 dry cake mix
Directions For Cake Batter No-Bake Cheesecake Filling
1. Mix softened cream cheese, lemon juice, sweetened condensed milk and dry cake mix together.
2. Spoon 2 1/2 tablespoons of cream cheese filling into your jars on top of the Nilla wafer crust.
3. Refrigerate before topping your cheesecakes with whip cream and of course sprinkles.
Whew, I told you this recipe was super simple but looks like you spent hours working on them. I hope you enjoy making these cute little desserts and customizing them for your guests at your next party.
What flavors of no-bake cheesecake are you looking forward to making?
About The Author of Cake Batter No-Bake Cheesecake Recipe
Brandy is the mom of two rambunctious boys and the wife to Cory. Brandy keeps busy chasing her two boys on 1200 acres, cooking 21 meals a week and blogging over at Farmer’s Wife Rambles.
Do you have couch potato kids are ones that are consider playing on their Itouches as exercise? I loved the game Twister growing up and I bought it for my kids. They have taken it out a few times but it seems to always end up in a wrestling match!! What games can get the kids excited and moving? Need a few ideas for Easter Basket fillers or Birthday Presents, then read on and you can win one too.
Have you seen these new games by Twister??
My daughter who is 11 thought they were pretty fun. A great idea for a slumber party if you don’t mind them staying up laughing and playing. She did have trouble finding new games on line she said they were mostly videos. I would love for them to be written out steps. This is so timely because the last few weeks she has been coming home with new hand jives if you will!! Perfect size to for a Easter Basket Gift Filler especially for those Tweens.! UPDATE: My daughter played these on a recent airplane ride and had fun making up new games.
You can buy Twister RIngz here
TWISTER RAVE Skip It®
Skip-It® is back in 2013 with the all-new TWISTER RAVE Skip-It® game that will have players skipping as long as they can! The longer you go, the more you glow as multi-color LEDs reveal 20+ color levels as you play! Try to master TWISTER RAVE Skip-It® by getting the game to light up to reveal all four iconic TWISTER colors (red, blue, yellow and green). The fun never ends when you’re skipping your way to victory! (Requires 3 AAA batteries – not included).
Age: 6+; Players: 1; Available: Now at mass merchandise retailers nationwide; Approximate Retail Price: $19.99
This game reminds me of the old fashion skip games that you had the ball connected to the leg. No fancy lights etc but just good fun while exercising. You don’t eve know you are excising. Just make sure you have plenty of room for this one you don’t want to knock over tables or people!
UPDATE: Get that heart pumping this game challenges your fitness level. We played on a wide open space on carpet. I would be worried about doing it on wood floors (leaving marks), there is a warning on the game or even the pavement ( leaving marks on the game). Keep all observers’ out of the away!. We had a leg to skip it encounters and it does hurt. While it was fun to play during the day, the kids said it was “Wicked” when playing with lights out! It was a little hard for my 6 year old to get it going, so I put a sock over his pants and he eventually got better. FUN FUN
To keep up with all things Game Night, like us on Facebook< http://www.facebook.com/hasbrogamenight> or follow us on Twitter: @hasbrogamenight.
ONE LUCKY CLOSE TO HOME FOLLOWER will have the chance to WIN both of these new games by TWISTER. Open only to US residents and will end 3/28. Enter Rafflecopter below. GOOD LUCK
a Rafflecopter giveaway
I was not compensated for this review but was given a product to review. All the opinions expressed are 100% my own.
My son could not wait to get it out of the box, but you don’t want to play when it is this light? This is a foam football sized for kids ages 6 and up. I want to mention foam as our dog did get into this and we had to go buy a new one. It can be eaten if in the wrong
This would be a great present for a sleepover party. The kids wont be sleeping anyway so get them out to play football. They also have a over the door basketball net but I would think my kids would stay up all night playing.
Here is the display at our local Target Store.
The kid’s consensus is that the green was easier to spot in the dark. However, the adults thought the red. Either way this is a great way for Nerf to branch their brand. The Nerf Firevision Football retails for $19.99 with 2 pairs of glasses and the basketball hoop retails for $14.99. So next Weekend night pull the kids away from the TVs and put them in the yard with FireVision you will be happy you did and you might have a little fun at the same time!
If you know me well enough I love to use baking mixes, from cakes to brownies, as basis to wonderful desserts. This past Monday was my husband’s birthday and when he woke up he was pouting about how he did not have a cake. I reminded him about the Mardi Gras Party I threw him just 2 days prior, but this was his actual birthday.
I had to sub at preschool that morning, but due to some snow there was a two hour delay. That was my ticket, I will grab one of my mixes I keep on hand and maybe just make some frosting.
He wanted chocolate cake with white frosting, (his exact words). To my surprise I only had white cake mix in the pantry. I tried to convince him to have brownies, but that did not fly. What to do, what to do?
Two hours until I had to leave:
I grabbed my Better Homes and Garden cookbook and looked up cake recipes. The Devil’s Food seemed pretty easy, no melting chocolate. I did improvise a little bit and added 1/4 cup of non-fat greek yogart to the batter. (out of sour cream).
Success they came out wonderfully. Only one hour to go. As they cooled on the racks I whipped up some butter cream frosting. Amazing how easy if you have butter and powdered sugar on hand, plus none of the extra ingredients in the canned variety.
20 minutes left: It was so cool in the house due to the wintry weather, the cakes were cooled. Frosted them with the homemade frosting. I used the recipe off the confectionery sugar.
Still not happy with the look of the cake, a little boring. My husband loves chocolate jimmies, so I smooshed some around the cake for decoration, and flavor of course, although I really don’t think they taste like much!!
My husband and kids thought this was the best cake they had tasted. I am so proud that I did not give up and made it from scratch.
Want a bite?
Poor guy, I did not have any candles but found a #2 which works for his 42nd!
Next time you are in a pinch, don’t think you can’t make a wonderful and moist cake for that special or not so special occasion!!
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 1 3/4 cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3 eggs
- 1 1/3 cups cold water
- 1/4- 1/2 cup sour cream or plain yogurt (optional)
1.Cake: Preheat oven to 350 degree F. Grease and lightly flour two 9×1-1/2-inch round cake pans or one 13x9x2-inch baking pan; set pan(s) aside. Stir together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
2.In a large mixing bowl beat the shortening with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla; beat until well combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each. Add the sour cream if using. Add the dry mixture and water alternately to beaten mixture, beating on low speed after each addition just until combined.
3.Spoon batter into prepared pan(s), spreading evenly. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool layer cakes in pan on wire racks for 10 minutes. Remove from pans. Cool thoroughly on wire racks. Or, place 13×9-inch cake in pan on a wire rack; cool thoroughly.
Buttercream Frosting–From Domino Box
3 3/4 cups confectioners sugar
1/2 c. butter or margarine, softened
3-4 tablespoons milk
1 tsp Vanilla
In a large bowl, with mixer at low speed, combine sugar, butter, milk and vanilla. Beat at medium speed 1-2 minutes until creamy. If desired, add more milk until frosting is spreading consistency. Makes enough to fill and frost 2 layer cake, 13×9 sheet cake or 24 cupcakes.
What is your favorite cake flavor?
I am hosting a Mardi Gras House Party sponsored by Zatarains for my husband’s birthday next weekend. I was trying to come up with some inexpensive decorations, since this is our first Mardi Gras party I have hosted. Sure we have gotten a King Cake but never hosted a party.
I went to the Dollar Store and found some inexpensive items to create a mood for the guests. I already had this 12 inch styrofoam wreath. I purchased 2 Mardi Gras tinsel like garlands and some masks.
They also had some great feather masks I purchased as extra decoration.
For the wreath, just simply wrap the garland around the foam frame.
I hot glued a skewer to the back of the mask and stuck it into the base. You could also add beads for more dimension. Inexpensive and does the trick.
I had the kids decorate a few extra masks with items we had at home. I sent some out to the guests to bring back to the party decorated.
I am now looking at some recipes, any suggestions?? I tried making a King Cake I will post tomorrow, not sure I will attempt that again for the party!
End of the year is approaching very quickly and as I was looking for supplies for my son’s birthday cake I came upon the sugarcraft website. I have made chocolate covered oreos before but they sell oreo bags as well as any colored sprinkle you can imagine. They also sell chocolate colors in tubes for decorating that I might need to try soon. They have colored chocolate discs in every color, candy molds and baggies to hold all your dessert crafts
For a child friendly kitchen craft try chocolate covered oreos and add your schoool colors for a special touch.
Melt your chocolate in the microwave slowly so you don’t burn it.
Dip each cookie into the mixture to coat completely. Tap off any excess and place it onto parchment paper. Add the sprinkles or candy decorations and allow to set either at room temperature or in the fridge.
Place them into the cellophane bag and tie with a ribbon. Have the kids draw or write on a business card size piece of card stock and add to the bag. I let my kids type theirs on the computer and add a graphic. I think they turned out great.
If school is already out, I am sure your next hostess will graciously accept them!! They would make great party favors or just a fun kitchen activity to do with the kids this summer. ( just be sure your air conditioner is on)