Flowery Teacher Gifts

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Please ignore the slight wilting of the flowers. They did perk back up after a good watering and some sunlight!
This is one of many great teacher gifts that I found on this nifty little site. They had some really cute ideas, so I know I’ll be back!
All you need is two flower pots, some paint, dirt and flowers.

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Start by coloring the bottom of the pot with chalkboard paint. It did take two coats to have really good coverage, but if I can do this, so can you!

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Second step is to paint the rim yellow. After the yellow is dry, add little hash marks like a ruler. Tony insisted on using his tape measure for this step. I couldn’t argue since they are his paints…..
After everything is dry, pot your flower or plant of choice. Then use standard chalk to write your message. The original pinner had “Thank you for helping me grow”, but I couldn’t quite manage that. It’s tough to draw on a round flower pot with chalk!
We made these for two of the best preschool teachers in the world. We were blessed enough to have them for a total of five years between the two kids. We will sure miss them when Chiara moves to kindergarten next year!
Happy end of the school year everyone!

Hot Cocoa Ornaments

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This was something quick and easy I put together for the kids’ teachers this Christmas. Since discovering Pinterest, I’ve learned to love making this cute little crafts. I’ve come to realize I may not be Martha Stewart, but I have fun with the kids, so it’s all good.
The original pin turned out much cuter than mine, and I partially blame that on the fact that I couldn’t find the right ornament. I found these light bulb shaped ones at Walmart last year, wanting to use them for another craft, which I never did. Go me, right?
All you need is a hollow ornament, hot cocoa packet, crushed candy cane and marshmallows. Layer them up inside and create a cute little tag to attach.
Simple, easy and a cute little craft for your kids to assist with for their teachers.
Happy holiday season everyone!

Scarecrow Teacher Gifts

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This was an adorable little craft that I found on Pinterest. The original pin, as usual, was a little cuter than mine, but we had fun making them. Well, the kids had fun playing with the paper scraps, scissors and glue sticks while I put this together.
You start with an empty Starbucks bottle, the kind that are available at the registers of grocery stores.

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You will need an assortment of buttons, paper scraps and glue. I started with krazy glue, moved on to Elmer’s glue stick, then ended with hot glue. Hot glue works best!

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I laid out my face design on the table first, to make sure I liked it, and really, who doesn’t like button eyes?

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This was the first ‘hat’ I tried, and it was just awful! The original pin had a plastic hat as the lid, and I had an impossible time making that work, at least until Tony got involved.

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Second attempt at a hat, and I thought I was going to go with this one. This was about when Tony decided to step in. The original pinner stated she colored her cups with yellow sharpie, which I did not have handy.

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Enter Tony and his model paints, at least for the first hat. The other three hats he spray painted yellow for me. Thank the weather for warming up enough for spray paint!
We’ve given one of the kids’ teachers their gift, and I can’t wait to hand out the rest!
I guess the best advice with this pin is to play around until you find what works. Your face materials, the candy inside, the hat…… Whatever you want! Happy crafting!

Caramel Sauce Teacher Treats

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I feel a little guilty that I haven’t been posting more because I have been doing a ton of Pinterest-y stuff for Christmas. I used to think that homemade gifts were only cute from kids under the age of ten, but Pinterest has taught me so much! I’ll try to get them all in before the New Year rolls around. Some can’t be posted due to people that may see their gift before they open them. Can’t have that! This one is safe because the kids gifts were already given to their teachers.
The original idea for this pin came from http://www.northerncottage.net/2012/05/teacher-gift-thanks-for-sweet-year.html which had these adorable little jars of caramel with an apple all wrapped in cellophane. I found this a brilliant idea! The original pinner said she cheated a bit and used store-bought caramel, which is fine, but as I had a caramel sauce recipe to try, I decided to make my own.
The caramel sauce recipe came from http://kneadtocook.com/sea-salt-caramel-sauce/ and I found the blogger there to be someone as amusing as I find myself! Be sure to check her out! The recipe is simple, which automatically makes it awesome, you just need to have patience, which I did not! My first batch was an amazing failure and went down the drain, but that second batch…….MMMMMMmmmmmm!
You start by mixing together 1 cup sugar and a half cup of water over medium-high heat, closer to the high side. You whisk and whisk until it’s well combined and let it boil. The patience part comes in here because you have to wait until the water evaporates and the goop leftover turns amber. Keep in mind that if you don’t, you will end up with something like this:
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Weird looking, right? It does taste good, and yes I’m weird for trying it even though it looks gross, but what normal person would want to eat this?
Once your water and sugar has turned into an amber colored goop, add in 6 tbsp. of butter. It’ll bubble up, so be ready! Whisk again until it’s well combined. Once it’s mixed together really well, remove your pan from heat. Then you add in a half cup of heavy whipping cream, beware of bubbles again, and whisk until it’s mixed together really well. Is your arm ready to fall off yet?
Once it’s all a gorgeous caramel color, like caramel sauce should be:
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I divided the caramel between 4 4oz jelly jars so I could gift them and was finally able to use the labels I bought months ago. They were mentioned here: https://superstevied.wordpress.com/2013/09/02/personalized-labels/ and they looked super cute on these tiny jars!
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Once this was all cooled, sealed and labeled, I put a cute green apple on top, put the cellophane around it and tied it off with some of my Christmas ribbon. I threaded a tag through the ribbon before I tied the bow off. Miss Seeholzer, the one teacher I hand delivered to, looked at it like a kid and said, “Oh, I love apples!” I just like the idea of an upgrade on the “apple for teacher” and I think it came out great! Sorry if I didn’t get this up soon enough for you to do teacher Christmas gifts, but this would also work for an end of the year gift, so have fun with it!