A day with Balloons

Each year, the county fair takes place in my hometown. All through my childhood years, hot air balloons would launch at the fairgrounds and fly right over my house. Since then, whenever a hot air balloon is seen, I become a giddy little nerd. Fast forward about fifteen years, and now I find myself hanging out at a ballooning festival, up close and personal with hot air balloons, hanging with a couple of the greatest friends a girl could have! You may recognize one of them as a fellow misc•maker.

(Courtney, Alex, and Jess)

The last weekend in July brings scores of hot air balloon enthusiasts to Readington, New Jersey. Alex and I were lucky this year to be invited to this event by a future misc•maker, Courtney. We watched with excitement as balloons inflated all around us and began to float off before our eyes.

We even got a chance to stand inside one of the balloons as it filled up! Here’s me and Alex with Courtney’s soon-to-be father-in-law. Mr. Leota is among the nicest people I’ve ever met and I can’t wait until the next balloon festival! I’m told next time we will be helping to chase down the balloon to help it land. How cool is that!?

Let’s tie this into crafts, shall we? Leading up to the balloon festival, I tried my hand at replicating the Leota’s balloon in polymer form and here it is! Challening, tiny, but ohh soo cute!

(Photo by Adam Leota || Balloon Charm by Jessica @ FrostedTreats)

Overall, this was the most amazing thing I’ve experienced this summer.

Well, Gotta fly!

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Make: Oven Baked Red Potatoes

Happy Valentines Day, makers!

If you’re like me, maybe you are planning to cook your loved one a nice dinner. If you are in need of a side dish, this recipe will complete your meal and add a little red to your plate! I found this recipe last year when I was making my boyfriend a dinner for Valentine’s Day. Cooks.com has an Oven Baked Red Potato Recipe that is to die for! It is amazing and it is so easy to make!

The ingredients are:

-1 tablespoon of butter (melted)

-1 tablespoon of olive oil

-2 cloves of garlic (minced)

-1/4 teaspoon of pepper

-3/4 teaspoon of basil

-3/4 teaspoon of oregano

-3/4 teaspoon of salt

-4 large unpeeled red potatoes

 

1)      Preheat the oven to 425.

2)      Mix all of the ingredients except the potatoes.

3)      Cut the potatoes into wedges. (Once the wedges are cut I usually cut them in half to make the pieces smaller.)

4)      Add the wedges to the bowl of ingredients, put a lid on and toss the mixture.

5)      Stand the potatoes on edge on a cookie sheet.

6)      Sprinkle a little parmesan cheese on the potatoes and put in the oven.

7)      Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.

 

It is as simple as that! It is one of the best potato recipes I have made yet. Even if you are not making a Valentine’s dinner, it makes a great side dish for any meal you make.

 

If you make this, be sure to let us know what you thought about it. My question to you is,

What is your favorite side dish?


 

What’s Your Motivation?

Over the last couple of weeks I haven’t been feeling well. Not only did I have to miss work, unfortunately it also prevented me from doing any scrapbooking or playing with polymer clay. This got me thinking about how much I miss working on all of my projects. It also led to the realization that my crafts are my way to relax and take any stress away.

So here is a question for all of you makers: Do you find it relaxing to craft? What is your “ritual” when you craft that makes it relaxing?

I have two rituals when it comes to crafting that help relax me. I usually have a night each week when my best friend, and fellow misc*maker, Jessica and I get together and work on our projects together. Not only do we get to work on our crafts, we also just enjoy each other’s company. We each work on our own project and talk about what is going on in our lives. No matter what we talk about when we are crafting I find it relaxing and any stress I have disappears.

When I find myself crafting alone, I have a different way of relaxing. I go up to my room and put on a movie. (It is usually a movie that I have seen a lot which is the only reason I get anything accomplished otherwise I would be watching the movie.) I  listen to the movie and zone in on the work I am doing. Whether it is making something out of clay or scrapbooking my life, it manages to calm me and take all of my stress away.

So you’ve heard my two ways of escaping the hard realities of life for a little while through crafting. Now that I am feeling better, I am looking forward to getting back into the projects I had to put on hold. So, I ask you all again, Do you find it relaxing to craft? What is your crafty relaxation ritual? I encourage you to share your thoughts by commenting here. I’m sure you will be as amazed as will I be to see how many different ways crafts can relax us.