While B was away for three days at a bachelor party this weekend, I decided to plan out some projects for myself so that I wouldn't be bored. I was a little hesitant that I'd be able to find something at Michael's that didn't involve any of the craft stuff I have in storage, but it turns out that I was quite successful. It also turns out that you can have an hour-long phone call with Feather Nester while wandering through Michael's looking for your projects! I've learned that this is what happens with long distance friends and family - you take calls when they come, even though you're often someplace very random. I can't even tell you how many times I've sat in parked cars for nearly an hour in front of a store talking to someone.
Project #1 was Thank You cards for Baby Girl's eventual baby shower. This was perfect because any craft I do either has to be functional or something I'm going to give away as a present. They're very simple, but soooo cute. Apparently Michael's Martha Stewart section has tons and tons of these little craft punches where you can create cut outs of pretty much anything you can think of, so I picked the elephant. Of course, when B saw the tiny pink elephants, he told me I was making cards for gay Republicans, but I told him to shut it. I also told him that his references for everything in life are going to have to start changing from politics and sports to children.
Project #2 was Bakerella's Cupcake Pops (cake on the inside, chocolate on the outside). I have no idea how I found her website, but I stumbled onto it months ago and it's great. She invented these little cupcake pops and they sort of took the baking world by storm. She was even invited on The Martha Stewart Show to give a demonstration (Hmmmm.... did not realize until right now how much Martha had invaded my weekend). Anyway, she has created tons and tons of different kinds for different occasions, and they are SO cute and would be perfect for birthday party favors, so I wanted to learn how to make them.
Of course, as with any baking or craft project, the first time you do something is always either a huge pain in the ass or a disaster. And I knew this going in, so I wasn't even that excited to make them. But now that I've gotten that first round out of the way, I'm excited to tackle them again.
There were all of the requisite first time snafus that I thought there would be - the first round of melting the chocolate didn't work, the second round I realized that I should have bought melting chocolate for the bottoms and not relied on chocolate chips, I need floral styrofoam to put the pops into and not the way-too-dense packing styrofoam, etc. But mostly what I realized is that these are NOT meant to be made start to finish all in one day. At least, not for me. It was too hard on my body and my back to have that much standing in one day. And I spaced everything out and sat down for whatever I could, but it was still too much. And I imagine that if you have children, you REALLY couldn't do all of that in one day just because you could never get that much time alone. And the directions don't sound that complicated, and they're not, but in practice, it's too much.
So the next time I make them, I'll split it up, correct some of the mistakes, and then it will be great. Of course, the first thing I said to B was "these are the favors I'm going to make for Baby Girl's first birthday party a year and a half from now!!" He laughed at me, but this is what happens when you haven't been able to be creative in nine months. He's also smart enough to know that this kind of love affair with creativity and pre-planning is why I was able to give him such a ROCK STAR of a wedding last June!