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Hi everyone! I am completely delighted to have this opportunity to reach out to so many people and share crafts, as well as working with Stephanie in brainstorming and giving you great projects ideas! Because I am so delighted to be here, I thought it would be fitting to give you one of my favorite delights…

Oreo Torte Delight

1 pkg Oreos crushed (save 1 cup for topping)
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
8 oz cream cheese
1 cup powder sugar
16 oz cool whip
5.9 oz box instant chocolate pudding

Make crust by mixing all but one cup crushed Oreos and 1 stick of melted butter and pressing into a 9×13 pan. Combine softened cream cheese, 8 oz cool whip, powder sugar and blend well. Smooth over crust. Make instant chocolate pudding according to directions on package. Smooth over cream cheese mixture. Take remaining 8 oz cool whip and spread over top of pudding. Garnish with crushed Oreos. Refrigerate several hours or overnight before serving.

YUMMY!! A bit messy and very sinful, next time I’ll have a healthier recipe!

By the way, February is ‘Bake for Family Fun Month’  and even though this recipe isn’t baked, I hope you enjoy this as much as I do!!

Until next craft…

Photo Jewels

Featured Friday Presents: Week 2

Lets Welcome

Crystal Bucholz 


Photo Jewels


Not only is she this weeks Featured Friday Friend but I am so happy to introduce you all to Smalltown Dreamz newest writer and crafter. That’s right this was the big surprise I have waiting to tell everyone. I have known Crystal for years and just recently we started talking and decided to collaborate. We are both moms and love to work on projects with our kids. We also have our MOM type projects that we will both be sharing with you. She makes some of the most stunning crocheted photo props I have ever seen. Here is some of her work. You can find her Facebook page below. Make sure you stop in and friend her. She has some great giveaways on there.

Here is some words from our new writer.

“Hi! I’m a wife and mom of two boys. All three are my world! If I’m not spending time with my family or working, I crochet and I have to admit, I am somewhat addicted. Other crafts I love to do would be scrapbooking, card making, photography and I love to cook! I love getting and trying new recipes but almost always make them my own by changing them slightly. I also love making and playing homemade games with my children and younger siblings! I’m very excited to be a partner for this blog and hope to bring you some new crafting ideas as well as share my hobbies with all of you!  ”

I’m a right-side brain thinker! I love to be creative and I love to craft. Crocheting though hasn’t always been my most cherished craft. I never even thought it an option as something I would like but  towards the end of my last pregnancy, I was put on strict limitations which were very close to bed rest, and the next step if my condition worsened. I had to keep off my feet and TV just doesn’t catch my interest most of the time.

Shortly before being limited and right after finding out we were having another boy, I ordered a hand-made hanging newborn pod for his newborn pictures. Then being on restrictions, I realized I wanted to make something for our upcoming arrival. I searched the internet and found a pattern for a newborn hammock and knew it was what I wanted to make. That same day I ordered special knitting needles and bought some yarn. When the needles finally arrive, I self-taught myself to knit by watching You Tube videos. As my knitting patterns increased, I learned more about crocheting but vowed not to get into it because it would be just another thing I would be blowing money on (buying my knitting patterns were starting to rack up by then.) I laugh at that now. Of course, I eventually gave in and now that I know how to crochet, I am completely in love with the art of crochet!

Crocheting photo props is where I started and am just starting to expand into some clothing  and everyday items. It seems, no matter what I’m making, as long as its crochet, I’m happy! It is my meditation, my comfort, my ‘out’ and I’m happy to be sharing it with all of you!

To follow Photo Jewels on Facebook click Here 

You can also follow her other blog  Here

Photos taken by Kelly Smith Images

Indoor Igloo

Indoor Igloo

BURRR!!!! Baby it’s Cold Outside……Yes today was one of those bitterly cold days up here in good ol Wisconsin. Temperatures around 4 degrees without a windchill. These are the days that its to cold to send your kids out to play and they are itching to do something. Lucky for me I have a ton of unused flat rate boxes that I use to send out items once in a while. Really you can use any boxes you have lying around, or even sheets work for this. I remember back when I was Jesse’s age, that’s what my Brother and I used to build forts and tents in the house when we couldn’t go outside to play. I made sure not to destroy the boxes so I could use them again in the future.

As the morning set in today I could see that my little one had a little more energy than usual and figured that he could use a good project to work on and play with. I just received a brand new shipment of Large flat rate boxes and my Husband and I decided to build an indoor igloo for Jesse.  My Husband did most of the constructing of little igloo while Jesse and I decorated the inside with his beanbag chair, a little clip on LED light, and some of his toys. We finished it off by adding a small flat rate box and taping it to the pillar and using it as his personal little mailbox. All this was done just in time for the mail lady to come and bring a letter that had some stickers in it for him to add to his stickerbook collection.

 This extremely cheap family activity was able to give our entire family a fun-filled afternoon and evening. It was such a delight to see him interact like he was an adult going into his own home and then having to leave to go to work. (Just like his Daddy) When he would get home he would check his mail. Most of the time I just filled it with our left over junk mail. I love being able to do projects like this that make our little one interact, think, and problem solve. As Jesse was the one that added the chimney to the igloo. I just can’t see taking it down tonight so I am sure we will have another fun-filled day with it tomorrow, seeing how we are expecting up to 8 inches of snow tomorrow. 

I just wanted to share this to remind everyone that it doesn’t take much to entertain your family and this did not cost us a dime. I look forward to sharing more of our cheap family activities as they come up. If you have any suggestions feel free to leave them in the comments section.

Stay warm



 p.s. Yes that is a small “Christmas Tree in the corner of the photo. We are starting to get our Valentine’s day tree set up for next month.  I will share photo’s after the tree is finished being decorated.

By the way Listia is a great place to get stickers, embellishments, and other materials for crafting really cheap. It’s where I get 75% of my material and even a few items to pamper myself once in a while.  The reason I am telling you is because unlike Ebay its free. There are some items that might have minimal shipping costs, but for the most part you can find free shipping on a lot of items. You can find a link to it at the bottom of the page if you are interested in checking it out.

Valentine’s Day Charms

    Valentines Day Charms    

Week 1 of the 5 Weeks of Love Challenge

I have recently started working with beads again. It really started by me going through all my stuff after christmas this year and organizing it. I came across this huge bag of glass beads that I have collected over the years. I sat down and organized them by color and realized that I had some really cool looking beads. So as the ideas started rushing into my head the next thing I knew I had 5 Charms/Keychains done. After finishing them I sat back and realized they would make great gift topper or just a great side gift if you are giving a a lot of small items for valentine’s day. These would also make great valentine’s for your kids to give to their friends as they make great charms for backpacks and other accessories.

Small little trinkets like these are things that your loved ones can carry around all the time, to remind them that you were thinking about them and that you loved them. These are quick to make and they don’t cost a lot to make either. These are great projects for you and your children to work on together. There are plenty of pretty plastic beads for the younger children to be able to string together and wear.

The only supplies I used were a handful of glass and Tibetan silver beads, embroidery floss, clear bead string, and a plastic circle of some kind. I use the plastic reminder pieces for knitting/crocheting. I look forward to making some more of these in the future. I would like to make one for myself using Swarovski Crystal Elements. I think that would really sparkle.

Beading can be a very expensive hobby so its best to look on Craigslist, Garage sales, or even your auction sites like Ebay and Listia can have some great deals on bead lots. You don’t need a lot of beads to make something small and beautiful like this. Just enough to give it some color and class.

Valentine’s day doesn’t just have to be about the celebration of love between a couple. This can be a holiday about celebrating the love of everyone around you. Here are some other great charms or key chain ideas that you can make for your loved ones that celebrate the love of a life. As much as we know that Valentine’s Day is just one of those made up Hallmark type of Holidays why not take the time to tell all the people who you care about that you love and appreciate them. It never hurts to take the time to show someone you care or that you were thinking about them.  

I hope you enjoy these as much as I enjoyed making them. I look forward to another great week. I am still looking into finding a blog for our Featured Friday spot. I do have a couple of blogs in mind I am just not sure on how to contact them to ask them permission to feature them on this site. Untill next time…..

Happy Crafting!

This was the bead project I worked on with my little guy and an idea for the younger kids to give as gifts or to make for themselves.

What to expect for 2012

Well I’m excited to say that we are starting out our New Year with a Bang! I received a TON of new material of the holidays thanks to my loving family. With out you none of this would have been possible. This past week was spent organizing through everything and creating a space for it all. I now have a nice little studio in the family room so that I can work on my projects while my Son plays with his trains and my Husband works on whatever project is going on at the time. I did manage to get a couple of projects done in which I will share over the weekend. The one project the whole family got into was our sons felt wall that we set up next to his art studio.

Our little one has picked up on the creative side and my Husband and I couldn’t be happier. We were able to put together a fantastic little art studio for him  for very cheap. We mostly got our deals during a city-wide rummage. Double Easel

 We were able to pick up a Little Tikes Art Easel for $2.00 at the local thrift shop and it was in great condition. Then at the city-wide rummage we were able to pick up a Little Tikes Light-up Art Desk with chair for $5.00. These were absolutely 2 of the best buys my husband and I ever made. Jesse gets use out of them almost every day. Then we were also able to pick up  a massive ziplock bag of color wonder coloring books and about 50 of the Color Wonder Markers for $4.00   The floor is cover in those puzzle looking rubber floor mats for easy clean up, Which is something that we picked up after he started crawling over 4 years ago. So then on the blank wall in his art corner we put up a felt wall. (I borrowed the pics because it would be too hard to get a decent pic where they are placed right now.)

He gets a lot of enjoyment out of moving the felt pieces around the board. As I get a little more time I will cut out the alphabet so we can start working on our letters and then when he is ready we can start to form words. I think it will be a fun way for Jesse to learn and its very easy to make. I have to give a big thank you to my aunt who gifted our family with a bunch of craft material for all sorts of projects including all the felt for the felt wall. We are having a lot of fun creating things to add to the wall. It was so easy to get this done seeing how felt stick to each other the only 2 supplies you really need are felt and scissors.

We have a lot of great projects coming up for 2012! I will be posting our 2012 crafting bucket list over the weekend to start the new year. I have a couple new favorites that I would like to get done. I love owls and recently when I was picking up a few items with my Christmas Gift cards I bought the cutest little bundle of owl pattern quilting squares. I would like to do something small with that like a crafting bag or something. I also picked up a bucket of air dry clay so the little one and I can make some valentine’s decorations and ornaments to go on the Valentine’s Day tree that will go up in Feb….Yes I said Valentine’s Day tree, I think we should celebrate every holiday with a decorative tree. The tree is nothing spectacular it’s just a small 3 foot tree, However it brings a little more festivity in the house and Jesse loves to decorate them. So these are just a couple of new ideas that we will be getting our hands on to over the next year. I look forward to seeing all your new projects. Remember to check back often for great deals and giveaways from all the other great crafters and craft suppliers.

Happy New Year and Happy Crafting,

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