I was a contestant on TLC's

Craft Wars, August 2012


(Check out our projects in Somerset Memories)


Crafting Tutorials I've done:

Sweet Sensations Centerpiece

ATC Holder

Voyeuristic Tendencies?  Check out my online galleries at:

My obsessive personality compiled these lists to share:


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I cook poorly, I craft obsessively and I love the look of a retro cocktail. When I am feeling guilty about taking time away from my family with my obsessions, I make videos about my guilt as "The Guilty Crafter" or I blog here. Thanks for stopping by!


Printable Flamingo Friday Flyer

After posting here and here about my successful attempts at bringing Flamingo Fridays to my old neighborhood and now to my new one, I've had a lot of people ask if they can have a copy of the flyer I created. Mine had our names, the date of the event and our address on it but I have modified my original flyer a bit so that you can simply print it off and deliver to your neighbors. Community mailboxes are a great place to let everyone know about Flamingo Fridays too. Just click the link below, choose "Printable Flamingo Friday Flyer" and print:

Printable Flamingo Friday Flyer


I'm a Mother Flocker

After months of craziness, we're finally settling into our new hometown. Last Thursday, I was still one day away from getting all of my craft supplies delivered from storage (that's 4 months of no crafting supplies which is about 3 months longer than celebrities go through rehab for their addictions, by the way) but I DID manage to pull off a creative event this past Friday in our new neighborhood.

Remember a few years ago, I blogged about Flamingo Fridays and how our new neighbor and my dear friend Marion had brough the tradition with her from another state? Well, now it was my turn to bring the traditon to my new state. The goal, as always, is a stress-free, casual event that encourages neighbors to get together a few times during the summer. I typed up a quick flyer (so quick that my first set said "Flaming Fridays" which I think is a whole other kind of thing) that explained the whole event.

I was panicking all week- I couldn't find my (many) plastic pink flamingos to decorate our yard, we were anticipating a big moving truck and lots of work unloading all day Friday and I just didn't feel up to making a drink, making myself look presentable and hosting an event after such a long day. I almost ditched the idea several times (like after the typo on the flyer and also when the printer ran out of ink and I had to hand-color the flamingos pink- I can't be sure but I may be the only mom in existence who has muttered strings of profanity about cartoon flamingos while coloring them). But I did it anyway because I didn't want to spend too long on our new street not knowing anyone and, more importantly, I wanted my kids to get a sense of community immediately in our new neighborhood. And besides, they were pestering me like crazy to do it so they volunteered to deliver all the flyers for me.

Got that? It wasn't convenient, I didn't feel like I had enough time or energy but I did it anyway. That's the key. And you know what happened? Neighbors came. They said things like, "Wow. This is SUCH a great idea, I've always meant to meet everyone but never found the right time." You know what else? We were introducing neighbors to each other who had lived, side-by-side, for 7 years. Years. They didn't even know each other's names. And the best thing? Turns out there were kids hiding in these houses all summer. They didn't even realize there were more kids on the same street until they came over for Flamingo Friday.

Fast-forward a few days and now I know who I'm waving to as I walk my kiddo to the bus. One neighbor brought me homegrown tomatoes and a basil plant so I could try the recipe she had mentioned on Friday night. Another neighbor made us a huge and delicious Persian dish when I commented that I love Persian food. When I walked over to pick up my big kid from his first day of school, he had already started walking home with another kid who lives across the street.

I am so happy that I ignored my initial instincts to simply live here and not make the first move to meet my neighbors. Sometimes it takes just a tiny bit of effort to change the dynamic of a neighborhood. Even if it means you have to accept that you may become known on your street as the mother flocker. I don't know about you but I've been called worse.

Feel free to print out the Flamingo Friday Flyer I created here (if you do, please do share how your first FF goes!):

Printable Flamingo Friday Flyer

P.S. I'll post my go-to, pink "Flamingo Friday" drink soon. It's so good. With or without the vodka shots. But mostly with.


Making a Move Official


Can you believe I STILL don't have my crafting supplies out of storage?! What's a crafty gal to do when I KNOW the only real way to make an address change official is to send out adorable, handmade change-of-address announcement cards that take 4 hours each to create and are comprised of at least $20 dollars of embellishments per card? Luckily, having my craft supplies in lockdown meant I could (for once) BUY announcements, guilt-free. Yippee! More time to watch the Real Housewives of New Jersey unpack and organize my new home.

I simply zipped on over to one of my favorite time-suckers, Etsy.com and browsed all the change of address announcements. Once I found a style I liked, I endlessly badgered the extremely patient and talented designer (you can find her shop here)  to make little tiny tweaks and changes so I could have some sense of having "co-created" the cards "we" ended up with. Which is to say, I basically had the designer add a heart where the star on her designs were but I also had her move text up down and sideways a few times. That practically qualifies me as a graphic designer, right?

I sent the final digital file over to my local FedEx Office Stores (who are not sponsoring this blog post this time- I actually for reals like to use their services) and I was ready to smack on a stamp and send my cards out. Total time (including Etsy shop designer badgering) was about 2 days. That's how long I have been known to spend on ONE handmade card that might never even make it to the mailbox.

So it's now official. We have moved to a new state. I'm getting settled and it's nearly time to break out all of the tricks I learned in my former 1950's time-warp neighborhood and get my neighbors sharing cocktails and crafting with me a.s.a.p. Stay tuned for updates on my attempts!


Trader Joe's Saves the Day. Again.

Please excuse my absence from this blog lately. I've been busy moving to a new state and getting acquainted with the most important element of any new city: food. More on the move in a future blog post but for now, it's important to note that we're now within biking distance to a Trader Joe's. Sharing a hometown with TJ's (Monrovia, CA) means that I can't imagine *not* living near one. I mean, how would we make salads without the dried tart cherries and spicy pecans? Ammirite?

Yesterday, in our quest to learn our new city, we abused our privileges at a "pick-your-own" berry farm. We took the "sample as you go" policy very seriously and ate an epic amount of berries, only to be rivaled by the amount we hauled home. Our eyes, as they say, were bigger than our stomachs. We are slowly making a dent in our stash by doing things like modifying more challenging and/or time consuming recipes with my own cheater shortcuts (see our cute mini pie in the pic above?) and topping it all off with the greatest find of all time- Trader Joe's shelf stable whipping cream. By gads, it WORKS. No more racing against the expiration date on whipped cream, no more "Dang, I should'a picked up whipping cream at the market. This can be in your cupboard (hello, Doomsday/ Zombie Apocalypse preppers!) until you need it. Then, pop in the fridge to chill, do that fancy trick where you also pre-chill your mixer and bowl (optional) and BOOM. Delicious, fresh whipped cream. Delicious.



Anatomy of an April Fool's Day Lunch (Year 3)

This is my 3rd year posting photos of the way I amuse myself when making my kids' lunches on April Fool's Day. This year, my co-conspirator friend Marion and I went full-on pet food for our kids. I used my favorite safety can opener trick to creat the perfect space for a container of pudding, a dog bone package fit string cheese like it was made for the job, and then we used a bigger dog treat bag for a sandwich and a cat treat bag for Goldfish crackers. Obviously we cleaned the containers and let them air out but we hedged our bets by only adding sealed lunch foods into the pet food containers. I giggled all day thinking about it. Go ahead and Pin it for next year or for when you want to emphasize that your husband's in the dog house..

P.S. This was last's years lunch: http://angeladaniels.squarespace.com/crafting-cooking-cocktails/2012/4/1/anatomy-of-an-april-fools-day-lunch.html


Quick Valentine's Day Craft: Heart Pom-Poms

One is the perks of having friends in the craft industry is getting crafty surprises in the mail. Yesterday, I received a box with several craft templates from Clover USA that will be the cause of untold hours of guilt because- why do housework when you have new toys? Amirite?! Check out these sweet little heart-shaped pom-poms I've been making all morning. I think I may even have an idea about what to do with them! Stay-tuned!

And if you're pom-pom crazed like I am, you can buy the Clover tool on their website. The tool comes in large and small (I'm using the small in the photos above) and a regular circle pom maker in large and small. Link is here: http://www.clover-usa.com. And in case you were wondering, I am in no way affiliated with Clover USA (except for having a friend who works there).


Playing with Dye- Valentine's Day Jacket Video


Sweater to Mittens Video Tutorial


Happy National Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day!


Yes, you read that right. It's National Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day. I know this because I learned it on NPR and in my family, we have a saying, "If I heard it on NPR, it has to be true." Also, several of you wished me a happy NBWA day because you sensed that with my love of recycling in crafting and my love for shiny plastic, I'd probably be a bubble wrap lover. You're right! Check out these upcycled business cards I made for a swap a few years ago. A bit of bubble wrap, some snips from a produce bags (some of my favorite plastic), a few little bits of scrapbook goodies and I had a pretty cute little card. Don't throw that bubble wrap away- you'll just feel guilty! Get crafty with it!


Washi Tape iPhone Cord Identifiers

We all fight over power cords around the Guilty house and last week I almost hyperventilated when I realized I had been trying to jam my Kindle power cord into my beloved new iPad mini. Eeek! I could have ruined it! And since my dear husband has scoffed at me buying the pink power adaptors I linger over at the drugstore, I decided to spend all of 3 minutes wrapping mine with some washi tape. You can find various ideas on Pinterest along the same lines- painting them with craft paint or nail polish- I even heard of someone dyeing hers with Rit Dye. But really, that's a lot of hassle. Washi tape is perfect- cute, quick, thin, and easy to work with. Hey- just like me! (I kid). But really, invest in the 3 minutes- there's no way my kids will be sneaking off with my adapters now plus I have a great visual reminder not to try to charge my iPad mini with the wrong charger! (Oh and yes, I did also cover my husband and son's various chargers. That'll teach them to mess with a crafter's stuff).

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