Saturday, August 24, 2013

Petite Sweets for Tiny Tastebuds

Continuing with my strange compulsion to make foods out of other kinds of food... this mini menagerie of desserts is made entirely out of candy (and a few cookie parts.) It's like a teensy-tiny dessert table for Barbie dolls - cute cupcakes, petite pies, clever caramel apples, dinky doughnuts and an itty-bitty birthday cake. Even the decorative cake stands are edible.

If you enjoy making things in miniature - and who doesn't, because everything little is 100 times cuter - then check out the complete tutorial on SheKnows.

Oh, and here are a few of my other foods-made-out-of-other-kinds-of-food projects:

Taco cookies

Carrot cookies

Fruit Roll-up Fortune Cookies

Cheesecake Mashed Potatoes

Steak Brownies

Candy Kabobs

Chocolate Broccoli

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Wiener Dog Rocker

A few weeks ago, Eric found himself without a project. It's rare folks, but it can happen. I jumped at the chance to have him make something I've been kicking around in my brain for a while - a wiener dog rocker. After Eric made those bird rockers, I kept thinking about other animals that would work and the dachshund dog is absolutely perfect - long, skinny and low-ridin' for little bitty kids.

I especially love that all I had to say was "Wiener Dog Rocker" and he immediately sketched what I was thinking on a post-it note. 

Done. That man can read my mind. (Must be why we make such a great team.) He went out to his work shop, and a few days later this precious little pup was ready to go to a good home.

I'm happy to say it was "adopted" by our good friends, the LIndemans, and their youngest dog-lovin'-kiddo, Reef. 

Ride 'em Reef! He'll have that puppy rockin' and rollin' in another month or two. 

Friday, August 16, 2013

Popsicle Postcards

I refuse to believe that summer is (nearly) over!

Make sure your friends enjoy one last delicious bite of the season. Mail them a perpetual popsicle. It never needs refrigeration. And really, who wouldn't get a kick out of finding this in their mailbox?

They're so easy to make too. All you need is a swim pool noodle, some decorative cardstock paper, and a few popsicle sticks. I made about 20 of these in a hour and I've been mailing them to all my friends and family with summer birthdays. They'd make a really cool pool party invitation too, dontcha think?

For all the instructions, step-by-step photos and even a helpful video, hop over to (And while you're at it, mail one of these to me. I never get fun mail. I just seem to send it.)

Ice Cream Sandwich Mailer

I have a confession to make. Once, when I was a freshman in college, I ate entire box of ice cream sandwiches. By myself. In one sitting. Oh wait... I take that back. I did give one to my little brother, Kurt. But only because he sat there, looking at me like “Are you seriously going to eat that whole box?”

So, to say I love ice cream sandwiches would be an understatement.

I love them so much, I made one that you can mail.

Looks real, doesn’t it? Like... really, real. Fool-your-mailman real, that's for sure.

All you need is some brown foam paper and 1-inch upholstery foam. I painted the edge of my foam white, only because it was kinda yellowing. But if you got some nice, clean, new foam from the store it would probably be white enough.

Check out SheKnows. com for the complete tutorial. Make a bunch of them. If you’re like me, you won’t be able to stop at one. Or six. 

Oh man, now I’m hungry for an ice cream sandwich....


I must have watermelon on the brain. First, I made this watermelon BBQ grill. Then I made watermelon ice cream bowls. And now I'm mailing watermelons. Somebody stop me before I melon again!

Continuing my experiment of lets-see-what-I-can-get-to-make-it-through-the-U.S. Postal System, I present to you: a waterMAILon

I painted an 8-inch,  Smoothfoam half-ball and hot-glued a cardboard photo of a cut watermelon top. Then I put watermelon-flavored candies inside. But anything silly would be fun to open. A toy slinky or maybe some crazy socks?

My waterMAILon cost less than $3.00 to mail. Crazy, right?

The tutorial and step-by-step photos are available at SheKnows. 

Check it out. I mailed one to myself. So fun to open my mailbox and see this!


Bea was my tag-a-long at work on Tuesday, and I just happened to have a photo shoot scheduled that morning. At the end of the shoot, the photographer told Bea to stand in front of the lights and he would take her picture. She was shy at first with the first few camera clicks, but warmed up pretty quickly.

My silly, sweet, goofy-grinning girl. She makes me smile.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Pencils? Check. Crayons? Check.

Back-to-school smiles? Double check.

Bea started 1st grade this week, and Gus is now a 6th grader at Stucky Middle School.

Sigh. Where did the summer go? 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Cool Cats

I'm desperately clinging onto summer. Our kids go back to school this week, and soon the weather will turn chilly. I'm just not ready yet.

So before we trade in our swimsuits for snow boots, let's pause (paws) and make some fun, cat-faced ice cream sandwiches.

Why cats? Because the Dennelers are cat people. (Not that we're not dog people. We love dogs too. Just other people's dogs. In other people's houses. In fact, now that I think about it, I'm not that crazy about a cat in my house either. But I put up with it because my kids wanted a pet, and I'm not about to deprive them of the joy. So, I guess you could say I'm a cat tolerator.)

Wait..... Where was I? Oh, that's right: Cool Cats. 

Wanna know the best part about these cat-shaped ice cream sandwiches? No baking or heating up your house. All you have to do is buy soft sugar cookies in the bakery section of the grocery store and make one cut with a round cookie cutter on top. Then decorate the faces, and sandwich some ice cream in between. The purrrrrfect summer-savoring treat.

Of course, I couldn't make only white and black cats. I had to make a calico version. Because we're not just cat people, we're calico cat people. (Meow, meow, meow and meow.)

For the complete, step-by-step instructions, pounce over to SheKnows. And enjoy every last bite of summer.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Gus Loves Chocolate

Me: "Gus, what kind of cake do you want for your birthday?"

Gus: "Chocolate."

Me: "How about a Minecraft-themed cake?"

Gus: "No. Just chocolate."

Me: "How about a big cake in the shape of a 12?"

Gus: "Ummmm.... No. Plain chocolate."

Me: "How about a cake made out of...."

Gus: "Mom? Can I have just have a plain chocolate cake, please."

Me: "OK. Chocolate it is."

And chocolate it was. Six layers of milk chocolate cake with milk chocolate icing. He must have really liked it, because he ate three pieces last night.

Happy 12th birthday, to our chocolate-lovin' Gus!

PS. Here are some of Gus' other birthday cakes from years past - 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and this half-birthday cake. As you can see, it was difficult - almost painful - for me to agree to a plain chocolate cake. ;)

Friday, August 2, 2013

What the..... watermelon?

Happy National Watermelon Day! It's August 3rd, in case you didn't know. (Don't feel bad, I didn't know either.)

There's no better way to celebrate the day (or heck, the summer!) with these easy, fun, edible watermelon bowls filled with your favorite pink ice cream, sorbet or sherbet.

All you have to do is dip small balloons into green candy melts and let them dry.

Done. So simple. So cute. You can find the complete tutorial at SheKnows.

I'm not sure why I enjoy working with chocolate and balloons so much. The same thing happened when I made those hollow chocolate eggs at Easter. It's like crafting in the kitchen, I guess. 

Need some other fun watermelon ideas? Here's my watermelon BBQ and watermelon cupcakes.

Thanks for featuring my bowls, Chickabug!


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