Flower Pens

It's back-to-school time, and who doesn't want unique, fun school supplies?  Here's a craft to make your boring, old pens fun, stylish, and unique!  These are so easy to make, and after all it is back-to-school time, so take advantage of this time to make these pens!

P.S.  Flower pens are one of my mom's specialty crafts that she has been making for years.  So, thank you Mom for sharing your craft!  

What You'll Need

  • Silk flowers
  • Ballpoint stick pens
  • Floral tape in green or brown
  • Glue gun and glue sticks
  • Knife or utility knife

Making Your Flower Pen 

1.  Remove the silk flowers from their stems.

2.  Remove the cap of the pen, and discard it.   Then from the rear end of the pen, use a knife to remove the end cap or plug, in order to create a cavity in the pen.

3.  Using your glue gun, squeeze a bit of glue into the cavity of the pen.  Then press the underside of the flower into the glue until it has adhered. 

4.  Place the end of the floral tape on the rear end of the pen, just under the flower. 

5.  Begin to wrap the pen with the floral tape, working your way down to the tip of the pen.
Once at the tip of the pen, cut the floral tape and press down to secure.

6.  There you have it!  Your finished flower pen!

Free Card at Cardstore.com

Grandparent's Day is just around the corner!  September 9th to be exact!  And in celebration, cardstore.com is running a promotion for a free card.  Use the coupon code CCK2248, from August 23rd through August 26th, at checkout.  Cardstore.com will print the card, seal the envelope, stamp it, and send it for you for free.

This coupon code is not exclusively for Grandparent's Day cards, so use it for any card you desire!  Enjoy!

Grilled Corn Ice Cream

The first and only time I ever had grilled corn ice cream was during my last trip to San Francisco, which was the summer of 2010.  We were at the largest farmer's market I've ever been to: The Marin Civic Center Farmer's Market in San Rafael . 

Since then I've been looking for a good farmer's market, similar to the Marin Civic Center Farmer's Market's enormity, in the Chicagoland area.   Nothing compared to that market I visited years ago, but the best I've found around my area is the Green City Market in Lincoln Park.  And it's a year-round market too, which is unusual for farmer's markets around here.  Anyone in the area should definitely check it out!  

But besides the experience of the farmer's market in San Rafael,  there was one more thing that had stuck with me until this very day.  It was the taste of grilled corn ice cream that I had sampled from one of the many vendors there.  And, trust me, it had to be really good for me to remember it and want to recreate it, all based on one tiny ice cream taster spoon sample!  

Since I received my ice cream maker, this is one of the recipes that I've wanted to try out... so here it is! 

Grilled Corn Ice Cream

yields about 1 quart


2 ears of corn
1 cup of sugar
7 egg yolks
1 & 1/2 cups of half & half
1 cup of heavy cream
1 tablespoon of vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt


1.  Preheat your grill to medium heat. Place both ears of corn, with the husks intact, on the grill.  Grill them for 15 minutes, flipping them once halfway through the cooking time.

2.  Let the ears of corn cool slightly.  Then take the husks and silk off of the corn, and cut the kernels off the cob.  Set aside both the kernels and the cobs.

3.  Place the half & half, corn kernels, and the cobs in a medium sauce pan, and bring it to a simmer.  Make sure to stir occasionally.  While that is coming to a simmer, beat the sugar, salt, and egg yolks in a large bowl, and set it aside.

4.  Once the half & half mixture has simmered, remove it from heat.  Discard of the cobs.  Then place the half & half and kernels in a food processor, and blend until smooth.

5.  Then slowly beat the half & half mixture into the egg mixture that was set aside previously. 

6.  Once beaten, pour the mixture back into the medium sauce pan over low heat.  Stir until the consistency thickens, and make sure to stir constantly so that the eggs do not scramble.  Once this mixture thickens, remove from heat, and pour through a fine strainer into a clean bowl.

7.  Allow the mixture to cool slightly.  Then add the heavy cream and vanilla to the mixture, and stir until combined.

8.  Place the mixture in the refrigerator until cold, and then follow your ice cream maker's instructions for churning your ice cream.

9.  Freeze, eat, and enjoy!

Free 8x10 Photo Collage From Walgreens

Register on Walgreens Photo, upload your photos, and start creating an 8 x 10 photo collage, because Walgreens is offering a free one if you use the promotional code GETONEFREE at checkout!  Just make sure to choose "pick up in-store" to ensure your order is completely free.  Take advantage of this promotion quickly because it expires August 21, 2012.

Three Free Birth Announcements From Cardstore.com

Are you expecting? Do you know someone who is? There are probably a million details floating around your head about everything that needs to be done before he or she arrives. Cardstore knows how stressful this time can be. They also know how important first impressions are, and want to help you announce your new little one to the world in the perfect way.

Cardstore is offering you the chance to sample up to 3 birth announcements for FREE (completely free because there is no cost for shipping within the U.S.)! Just use coupon code CAK2963 before midnight this Monday, 8/20/12. Take some time to peruse their huge selection of boy, girl, twin, or even adoption announcements, and pick a couple that you like best. Then you can customize them to say whatever you'd like (maybe even fill in your own stats from when you were born, for fun), and have the samples sent straight to you. We know you'll love them all!

Finally, your precious newborn arrives! If you have already uploaded friends and family's addresses to Cardstore's address book, all you need to do is add your baby's best glamor shot to your favorite announcement, his or her impressive stats, and Cardstore will stamp and send them all for you. It couldn't be easier! Congratulations to all the parents-to-be and happy sampling!

Click on the sample announcement below to be redirected to cardstore.com.

Sample up to 3 Birth Announcements for FREE at Cardstore.com! Use coupon code CAK2963

Sock Bun Tutorial

Before I ever found out about the miraculous sock bun, I would, on occasion, be tempted to style my hair in a traditional ballerina bun.  You know, the bun where you take your ponytail, twist it, wrap it in a circle, and pin it. Well, mine never came out well.  There would be stray hairs sticking out of it, and I could never get my bobby pins to keep my hair in place.  So, because of the misfortune of my persistent attempts, I never thought I could actually wear a bun like that out and about.  But then I found the sock bun, and my troubles easily retreated!!! Now perfectly messy ballerina buns are easily achieved all with the help of a pair of socks!  

Take a look at how to assemble your socks and wrap it in your hair. Give it a few tries and experiment with it! Have fun!

P.S.  Keep your bun in overnight, and treat your hair well with a no-heat method to get light curls.

What You'll Need

  • A pair of socks (preferably socks that are similar to your hair color)
  • One hair elastic
  • Scissors 
Making Your Sock Doughnut
1.  Cut the toes off of both of your socks.

2.  Take one sock and begin rolling it into itself to create a doughnut (you can stop at one sock, but I like to use two in order to create a thicker and sturdier bun).

3.  Then take the rolled sock, place it in the end of the other sock, and begin rolling it into itself again until you have a thicker doughnut.

4.  Voila! You've created your sock doughnut... now to do your hair!

Making Your Sock Bun
1.  Put your hair up in a ponytail at the crown of your head.  Use a brush to  create a smooth bun, or put your hair up using your fingers to create a messy, textured bun.

2.  Pull your ponytail through the sock doughnut.

3.  Place the sock doughnut at the end of your ponytail so that you can at least tuck the ends under the doughnut. 

4.  Roll you sock doughnut, with the ends of your hair tucked under it,towards your scalp.  With every roll, continue to keep tucking the hair under the doughnut until you reach your scalp.  It may take a couple of tries to get the hang of it, so just keep trying because the results are gorgeous! 

5.  There you have it, your sock bun!  Tuck any loose or stray hairs under the sock doughnut, and, if you see the sock peeping through, just tuck  your hair accordingly.

* A special thanks to my sister for finally agreeing to being my hair model for Sock Bun Tutorial.  Bugging her lots   and a promised frozen custard paid off !!!

Free Apparel at Sears Outlet

Get one piece of free apparel, today only, at  Sears Outlet!  Go to their Facebook page here, and print your coupon.  You must be a Shop Your Way Rewards Member, so, if you are not, sign up today in-store or online.

Free Card at Cardstore.com

Get your free card, for any occasion and any price, at cardstore.com by using the code FRIEND12 at checkout.  Shipping is free, whether you have your card shipped to you or the recipient.  Use this code fast though, because it is valid until August 5!  


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