Friday, October 22, 2010

Craft(y) Project: Deco Boxes

I've really been slacking in making interesting posts (like with that long lost TBM concert review I'm finally giving up on), so I'm going to post a few simple projects. 

These boxes can be found at just about any craft store and they come in unlimited shapes and sizes. Also good for this are random unwanted tins - of which we all have a couple from last Christmas I'm sure - though their texture makes adhering things more difficult. I hope this gives someone a simple idea for a holiday or birthday gift; handmade gifts are always the best remembered and most appreciated. They're usually the cheapest, too! Sort of like you can use and mix up random bits and pieces in your fridge with a base of pasta or rice, so too can you rid yourself of crafting clutter, bits and baubles using containers as a base.

I made little sea creatures and affixed other leftover pieces of his Halloween costume. I even found a perfectly to scale treasure chest to add at the 99 Cent Store. 

Consequently, I also found a Jim Henson Storyteller VHS there for 60 cents. Watching it while making this helped a lot, lol.

The boxes that Christmas cards come in are perfect to use for this. They're already half-decorated, sturdy, and you know the person you're giving it to already likes the design, because they picked the cards. Don't ever throw a pretty box away, make it into a cheap (or free) but unique and cherished gift!

Containers are probably the best category of items to deco because they're largely stationary, easy to display and their moving or functional parts are easy to avoid.

For example, try deco-ing: 
♫ Trinket and Jewelry Boxes ♥ Powdered Makeup Containers 
♥ Birthday Gift Boxes and Bags ♫ Contact Lens Cases 
♫ Old Christmas Tins ♥ Small Craft Supply Containers

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Gluten-Free Review: Whole Foods Goodies

Over the summer, I tried a small assortment of tasty-looking gluten free items after being invariably sucked into Whole Foods by its delicious gravitational pull. I hadn't posted them yet because of technological complications, but now, here they are!

Gluten Free Double Chocolate Suicide Cake

This cake tastes like it's made of pure chocolate chips - probably because it is. It's so insanely chocolatey that I would consider 3 modest bites the serving size. I had to peck at it like a bird for weeks. I don't eat a whole lot of chocolate and sweets but I do of course like them about as much as the next person, and... whew! Attempting to eat this is like some kind of sick, delicious melt-in-your-mouth workout. They offer one twice this size - I think this one is 3" or 4" in diametre - for a steep price, but trust me, you're just going to need this one. If you're feeding multiple people, buy one of these for every 3 or 4 guests. I think it was $3.95. Well, well worth it.
Sesame Red Bean Dango

I was charmed by these little rice flour pillows of joy, an unexpected treat nestled in the refrigerated section amid prepared tofu and vegetable rice bowls destined for an office microwave somewhere. Unfortunately, they were hollow, promising much but delivering little. They sort of reminded me of doing papier mache with a balloon. At least twice their current quantity of red bean filling content is required. For $1.95, though, I was quite satisfied; they were filling despite their skimpiness.

Udi's Gluten Free Whole Grain Bread

In a small standing freezer stuffed with gluten-free and other specialty breads, I found this, the best gluten free bread I've tried so far. I only found out about my wheat allergy a couple of years ago, but let me tell you, I've tried a lot of things, and most of them were awful. Cookies like wet sand flavoured with vanilla extract that almost choked my friends to death, et cetera. This is not bread. It's not pillowy and chewy and light and delicious, but it's getting pretty close. For $5 or $6 per loaf (though at least in this case the pieces aren't dwarfed by a Kraft cheese slice) it costs what the others do, but is much better. I'll post a picture of it as a grilled cheese sandwich later, since I made one earlier tonight but forgot. :/ It makes excellent grilled cheese if you cook it low and slow. It comes out kind of cracker-y, but not like a cracker. It's perfect for dipping in creamy tomato soup.