From Edible to Printable, DIY Homemade Valentines For Everyone!

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, and who doesn’t love giving and receiving a handmade card, gift, or yummy treat to celebrate the special day?   Whether you have oodles of free time on your hands or non at all, there are Valentine’s treats and projects that will fit into your schedule!

I have scoured the internet (ok so pinterest, but really that IS the internet now) and put together a compilation of what I think to be a fantastic representation of the best ideas out there!  From toddlers to teens, friends to lovers; there are a plethora of ideas I’ve gathered for you to choose from.  Choose from quick and easy to complex and lengthy (but rewarding and impressive), it is all represented here! *Please note, these are not my pictures, all pictures came directly from the post/website they represent. Click on each picture to go to the recipe/how-to! For more great ideas, check out my Valentine’s Pinterest Board!

This Chocolate Pomegranate Tart, from Pastry Affair, looks divine!

This Chocolate Pomegranate Tart, from Pastry Affair, looks divine!

These heart cupcakes are a cinch to make!

These heart cupcakes are a cinch to make!

It's a good amount of work, but well worth it for your loved ones! From GlutenFreerican

It’s a good amount of work, but well worth it for your loved ones! From GlutenFreerican

I couldn't find the source for this, but the pinterest caption says "Starting Feb 1st let them wake up to a new heart on their door to something you love about them."

I couldn’t find the source for this, but the pinterest caption says “Starting Feb 1st let them wake up to a new heart on their door to something you love about them.”

Love this idea from A Small Snippet!

Love this idea from A Small Snippet!

Coupons  from Better Homes and Gardens. They have Kids, Adult and even a Blank version!

Coupons from Better Homes and Gardens. They have Kids, Adult and even a Blank version!

Cherry Chocolate Kisses, from the Curvy Carrot!

Cherry Chocolate Kisses, from the Curvy Carrot!

Super easy Valentines from Spoonful!

Super easy Valentines from Spoonful!

These Strawberry Oreos from Six Sister' Stuff look great!

These Strawberry Oreos from Six Sister’ Stuff look great!

I love these easy and beautiful Doily Valentine Decorations from Smashed Peas and Carrots!

I love these easy and beautiful Doily Valentine Decorations from Smashed Peas and Carrots!

Red Velvet Cheesecake Brownies, yes please! From  Bakingbites

Red Velvet Cheesecake Brownies, yes please! From Bakingbites

These handmade treat bags from The Farm Chicks are adorable!

These handmade treat bags from The Farm Chicks are adorable!

These bubbles from Simply Modern Mom are a great non candy alternative!

These bubbles from Simply Modern Mom are a great non candy alternative!

Another great alternative to candy for valentines from dandee-designs!

Another great alternative to candy for valentines from dandee-designs!

I see no reason to wait till Valentine's Day for these Dark Chocolate Raspberry Cupcakes with Raspberry Whipped Cream from Ambitious Kitchen!

I see no reason to wait till Valentine’s Day for these Dark Chocolate Raspberry Cupcakes with Raspberry Whipped Cream from Ambitious Kitchen!

These are all over pinterest, and they are adorable! From  I Gotta Create

These are all over pinterest, and they are adorable! From I Gotta Create

Love these cookie hearts from Martha Stewart

Love these cookie hearts from Martha Stewart

What holiday is complete without a corresponding chex mix?! From Betty Crocker

What holiday is complete without a corresponding chex mix?! From Betty Crocker

Advertisements

Bacon, Chocolate and a delicious giveaway

If you know me, then you are fully aware of my love of bacon. Currently there is about 10lbs of it in my freezer (from our pork share) and that is not including the bacon wrapped meatloaf which is also in the freezer.  Also, if you know me, you know I like to pair bacon with, well, “different” foods. My friend Sarah and I have been known to top cake with it. (no that is not a joke)

Luckily for me, and you, there are other good folks in the world who love bacon just as much as I do!!! AND they have invented a Wonka-esc place they all “Baconery.” What do they do at Baconery you ask? Why they make baked goodies LOADED with bacon!!!  I am not talking bacon bits, I am talking HUGE chunks of bacon!!!!!

Deliciousness

The awesome folks at Baconery graciously sent me a loaded sampler so I could try out all their amazing treats!  And the best part is, they are giving away a second sampler to one of you!!! What will you find in your sampler……

  • Bacon chocolate pretzel  rods –  Delicious! Crunchy sweet, slightly salty, and meaty. The dark chocolate compliments the flavors perfectly; far better than milk would have been.
  • Bacon Marshmallow Bars –  The only way I can describe them is “smores on steroids” exactly what you didn’t know was missing from crispy treats. I never liked crispy treats, they were always blah to me, and now, I am in love!!!

"Crispy Treats on Steroids"

  • Chocolate Covered Bacon – Bacon, just when you thought bacon couldn’t get any better, it DOES!!!! I admit, I was skeptical, but my mind was blown! The perfect combination of sweet, and salty and of course BACON!!
  • Bacon Brownie- Smells like a chocolate lava cake, tastes like the moistest chocolatelyest brownie EVER, and then there is bacon. Cake meets brownie meets bacon;big pieces of bacon!!! It is divine!!
  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Bacon Cookie – Deep dark chocolate, peanut butter, hint of bacon, not overpowering, just the right amount, soft chewy and flavorful, exactly what a cookie should be! They perfected the cookie!!
  • Chocolate Chip and Bacon Cookie – It seriously tastes like chocolate chip pancakes with bacon!!!

Are you hungry yet????

To win this box of deliciousness, leave a comment below telling me you want to win it! It’s THAT easy!!

  • For additional entries: (leave a comment for each one you do)
  • For a 2nd entry to win, go and “like”  “Green Skies and Sugar Trips” on Facebook
  • For a 3rd chance to win, go and “like” Baconery on facebook
  • For a 4th and final chance, follow Baconery and Me, Bellacake on twitter
  • And for a 5th and final chance, post this on your facebook page and tell your friends to enter too!
  • Remember to leave a comment for each!!

This contest is open to anyone living in the US (sorry no shipping out of the county)  I’ll use random.org to select a winner and Baconery will ship the sampler directly to you. :-)   (I will contact the winner for their address) Good luck!  (Contest is open until Tuesday February 28, 2012)

Disclosure: I received a free sampler pack from Baconery, but  all opinions are entirely 100% my own 🙂

Quick and Easy DIY Christmas Gifts

Christmas is coming….it’s actually practically here already. Scary right? Have you finished your holiday preparations? I know I haven’t :-0 !  In thinking about what to get people, I always have that age old internal debate; “to make or to buy.” It is a tough one, I most definitely prefer to make Christmas gifts, or if I do purchase, get one that is custom made. I once gave someone a custom flask with their favorite picture “glazed” onto it. It is by far, even still to this day, the single best gift I ever came up with. Bloody fantastic if I say so myself. 😉

So this morning we were chatting on the Green Skies and Sugar Trips facebook page about what people were making or wanting to make and the question came up “what  things that can be made before Christmas, and would be quick and easy but still a great gift?” So with that in mind I set out tonight to find the best of the spectacular DIY gift ideas available on the internet. And here is what I came up with. But please, feel free to add more, I would love to hear your ideas!  *** All photos below are not mine and have been taken directly from the websites I found the recipes/ideas on;  clicking on them will take you directly to the link for that item.

Sugar and Spice Candied Nuts, From “Smitten Kitchen” (A delicious and healthy gift idea)

Sugar and Spice Candied Nuts, Photo by Smitten Kitchen

This is a GREAT idea!!! You could easily make the nuts in a HUGE batch, and then package them in mason jars, or if you want to do smaller portions, those great little candy containers you can find at Michaels Craft Stores.  Then label using a blank label  and a festive sharpie or print out labels on your home computer for an even more “Martha” look. (We ALL love the Martha look)

Chocolate Mint Scrub, From Healthy Green Kitchen

Chocolate Mint Scrub, Photo by Healthy Green Kitchen

Winnie is the magic behind Healthy Green Kitchen. She is a dear friend and a wonderful woman. A really lovely and kind soul; as well as an all around just awesome person. A great sense of humor but also quiet and reflective. She (like Barb I mention below) inspires me. Winnie Rocks! 🙂  Now bak to the scrub. Let’s be honest, who doesn’t love a sugar scrub? The way they leave our skin feeling smooth and soft, and like we ACTUALLY spent some time on ourselves for once…. Oh wait, these are gift ideas for others…. No really, this is a great gift idea for your girlfriends, sisters, mother, any female (or a male in touch with his feminine side) who needs a little TLC. Or make it and keep some for yourself. 😉 

Cranberry Vodka, From The Food Channel

 

It really doesn’t get much easier or seasonal than this. And you have just over 2 weeks left to make it, so if you start this weekend it will be ready just in time for Christmas. Cranberries, Vodka and a bottle, that is really all you need. Not sure where to get a bottle? Head over to Michael’s Crafts, they have tons of bottles to choose from, or even homegoods. A solid gift that is sure to please.

Chocolate Candy Cane Marshmellows, from “A Field Journal”

Does this really even need a description?? Marshmellows, Candy Canes and Chocolate, and they even give you a link to print out the label! And again, head over to Michael’s Craft Store for the baggies or a container to put them in.

Coffee Liqueur, From Creative Culinary

How to make coffee liqueur, Photo by Creative Culinary

If you like Kahlua then you will LOVE this! Barb is not only a genius when it comes to all things edible, she is also an amazing woman and inspiration to me. This will not be ready to give by Christmas, by in the spirit of honesty, who do you really love enough to share something this amazing with?  Probably the only people you also love enough to cook for. So make this now, and in a month or so have a dinner party and serve it! And take a look at Barb’s site while you are there, she is a wealth of knowledge.

Homemade Vanilla, From Simply Recipes

Photo from Simply Recipes

Homemade Vanilla is another classic gift, you just can’t go wrong with it. And though it won’t be ready to use if you give it for Christmas, just include a little tag with instructions on how to care for it until it matures, and voila! If you decide to make this for a later gift date, then check here for a great packaging idea, complete with labels.

These are just a few ideas, there are tons more out there. Poke around on the websites these are from and you will find ever more. Or search Pinterest, there are thousands there!!!!! But I definitely have some ideas now on quick things I can make!

PS, Michael’s Crafts has no clue who I am, I just love the store and get most of my supplies and crafy things there cause its like Disneyland for me, it’s almost as great as Warren Cutlery 😉