Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Tuesday Tips—More Than You Bargained For

(this is a mega-sized can that looks mini-sized in this picture)

Today I made chocolate-covered nuts and paper-covered nut-containers for gifts.


Tip 1: Spread newsprint over workspace. Newsprint is a great investment and available at your local newspaper office. They are roll ends that are too small for the machine, so the newspaper offices are usually willing to sell them very inexpensively or give them away. We use newsprint for lots of things, but today I used it to cover the counter.


Tip 2: Before there was Mod Podge there was Elmer’s Glue diluted with a little bit of water, before that, well I’m not sure but it probably had something to do with boiled hooves. Both Mod Podge and diluted glue work well for this project, albeit Mod Podge is more expensive. Today I used Mod Podge because I was out of Elmer’s glue.


Tip 3: When working with tissue paper for covering containers, apply the Mod Podge to the container with a brush and then adhere the paper and layer with more Mod Podge. (Better yet, just follow the instructions on the container.) However, when using heavier paper, I have found it is easier to thickly apply the Mod Podge to the back of the paper and then apply the paper to the container. After you have applied the paper to the container let it dry and make the chocolate covered nuts.


Tip 4: Unwrap all of your leftover Christmas and Halloween chocolate and put into a bowl. Make sure your bowl is dry. Microwave just until melted. Make sure you don’t microwave the chocolate too long. Make sure you remember that there is enough wax in the candy that it can hold its shape and markings even when it’s melted.


Tip 5: Add the nuts from the emptied canister to the melted chocolate, stir until well coated and then drop by teaspoon into mini-cups. You can use any kind of nut you like, salted or unsalted, or if you have salted but they’re too salty, rub them in a towel to brush off some of the salt.


Tip 6: After the chocolate covered nuts are cooled and dry, line the canister with paper shreds or tissue paper and stack the nut cups gently inside. Add a ribbon and a few embellishments and your gift is wrapped. Cost for a mega-size can of chocolate covered peanuts (I forgot to look at the ounces before I covered the can) is approximately $2.00 with free chocolate, $3.00 without. (And a whole lot of nuts left over for other things, too . . . like this recipe.)


As long as you’ve got the Mod Podge and fun patterned paper out you might as well cover a few extra canisters and some rolling pins, too. (The rolling pins take several coats of Mod Podge, but the good thing about them is you can roll the pin to get the air bubbles out. I spray these with varathane for durability and protection after they are dry.)


Tip 7: If you happened to take all of your photos in poor light, then just doctor them up with photobucket.com effects and post them like that was the original plan.

Tip 7 1/2: If you have a card embossed by the Cuttlebug I told you about a few weeks ago and it has a small tear in it, Mod Podge it to a nut can and you have a gift. And, if you can still tell there might have been a small tear in the card, then add a ribbon and embellishment.

And there you have Tuesday Tips. Have you got a tip to share with us today?

Up next week is Tuesday Tell-All. If you have a question, please post it in the comments and I’d be glad to look up an answer for you. In the event you are every bit as smart as I think you are and don’t have a question, then it will be Timely Tuesday instead.


Neighbor Jane Payne said...

Sorry I had to add the word verification again. Anybody else been plagued with spam lately?

Darla said...

Jane, love this post!!!
and yes the spam has been terrible... if the password doesn't work than I'm gonna password my blog.. So frustrating ...

Have a great day!!!


What a great idea!!! Thanks!!!

michelle said...

Good thinking on the photos!

So can you use the rolling pins for cooking?

Ande Payne said...

Looks like someone got fancy with photoshop! I love you. I wish I was home eating these with you.

Julie said...

Great ideas! Any baby gift wrap/ shower decor/food ideas? I'm giving a shower next week and could use your creative wisdom!

Cali said...

Tip 7.99999: If the whole project is a bust because you over-melted your chocolate, under glued your paper to your can, and the torn card still looks torn, then just give it to Neighbor Jane because she WILL appreciate it.

When I called you last night and you said we (blog readers) were going to get more than we bargained (pun intended) for... you weren't kidding; over 7 tips in one Tuesday. NJP, you are amazing.

I love you. Reading your blogs often makes me miss you more than is healthy. Luckily, there are phones and occasional visits and memories, but dang it if this doesn't hurt sometimes.

Love, Cali

Becky said...

Great post! I'm not sure which is more funny...the fact that you think I would still have chocolate left over from those holidays or tip 7 about the doctored photos. :)

Thanks for the smiles and the tips!

Michelle said...

such a great gift idea and I know you love teh Cuttlebug embossed cards and envelopes!

Jill said...

This is a very clever idea!

Grace said...

How fun!! I can't wait to do all these fun arts and crafts with you.