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Thursday, December 20, 2007

A little this, a little that: Altered clipboards and Almond Cashew Crunch

It's not like I don't have anything else to do, I mean I'm blogging when I should be candy and cookie making right now. (You'll see PART of my mess in pictures down the post). Ya. I'm, very, very good at procrastinating. And then stressing out about my procrastinating. But in any case, I thought you'd like to see some of my projects I've been doing for gifts. I still need to get to a Meme Rebecca challenged me to--so that will be coming later in the weekend when I procrastinate again next. :) Featured in the above photo is a combination of my cinnamon apple ornaments and bottle cap magnets/sans the magnet. I've been using the ornaments to top packages and as freebies in my last couple Etsy sales. I absolutely love them. I'm definitely making a batch or two of them for a future craft show.

I completed 3 altered clipboards-two for guests that are coming for Christmas Day.

And the third, a pink, green and brown one for my work Secret Santa. She's into crafting and scrapping so I figured she wouldn't mind a hand made gift. The tag on this one is from Raesha-a tag I received in her tag swap earlier this year. Don't you all love making or receiving fancy tags?? They are the ultimate in instant gratification. So quick and can be easy (some are more intricate than others), and they are wonderful to top your packages with or to use in projects like this or altered journals.

Okay, here we go-getting to what I should be doing. Cooking and candy making. Well the good news is, I have 3 batches of this recipe made up. The bad news is, I messed up one of the batches...I mean, it's not bad but I've mad better. In this particular recipe, it called for butter and I only had margarine. In this picture is my batch that I used margarine. It turned out great. The batch I made with real butter next--it turned out MUCH darker and way more greasy. Hmmmmm. I think I had two high of a heat on that one. The last batch I went back to the margarine and it turned out good again. (((Scratching my would think the butter would have been best)))

Ta-da and it's done.

You're looking at Amish Cashew Crunch.
Here's the recipe:

1 cup sugar
1 cup butter (you can sub margarine)
1 tbs light corn sryup
1 container of cashews (reg size..sorry don't know the ounces)

Lightly grease a cookie sheet. On LOW heat (I have an electric stove so I had it on about 4), heat butter, sugar, and corn syrup to 290 degrees (hard crack stage). You can stir this regularly to ensure everything is well mixed and the mixture doesn't burn.
Once it hits the correct temp, quickly add your cashews and spread onto the cookie sheet. Let cool and then break into pieces.
I store mine in the fridge with wax layers separating the layers.

This is next.
What was I thinking????

Today was Josh's Christmas party at school so I went and they asked me to bring my art work to show the students and explain what it is that I do. I just have to say, the children were absolutely precious!! They were oooooing and awwwing me, asking questions, like "Do you paint dogs on motorcycles, too? How do you do that??? Your the best artist ever! (((LOL))) One of my lady portraits got a response of "That looks just like you"....LOL I had fun explaining to the kids how you do some of the techniques. One of the teachers even remarked that she wanted to purchase one--she's going to look on line and make a decision. :) Speaking of selling things--My embossed tags are just about sold out. One set left! Whoooohooo. I even sold one to a person in Spain! How cool is that???
After the party, I dropped off a couple of paintings at a print shop of a customer of ours and he's going to give me a great price on some high quality prints. He's much more reasonable on the cost per print as well as the proofing price/set up fee that I've found online. I'm siked. Most places want anywhere from 25 -150 for a set up fee; and prices for prints are about 15-50 depending on size (or higher). You have to sell several just to get your set up fee back, so I haven't gone that route yet. His set up fee is 7.50; and prices of prints are lower to start with than online; which still doesn't leave a lot of room for profit but its the fact that I can expand my product life greatly which entices me all the while still offering a good price.

If you haven't stopped by my etsy shop lately--please check it out!

Have a great rest of the week!


Sarah and Jack said...

Lucy, I love that bottle cap magnet!

Jane said...

We are so much alike! I am also blogging instead of baking and laundry doing! Akkk! It's gonna catch up with me! In the mean time, have a great weekend and if I don't get back here, Merry Christmas!

Raesha D said...

I love the clipboards!!! I have the one you made me hanging on the wall:) And I love that you used one of my tags! Would you believe I have only used 2 of mine from the swap so far!

linda t said...

I have been collecting clipboards forever and have YET to make one of your inspiring altered clipboards!
I love your work Lucy!