Simply Sweet Home

Recipes, Decor, Crafts, Product Reviews, Giveaways and more.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Best of Simply Sweet Home 2009

I always like to close out the year with some links to some of my favorites posts from the year. It helps me to see where I've been with the blog this year so that I can prepare for next year, and it highlights some things you might have missed!

Sweet Thursday Dessert Round-Ups: There were so many great round-ups this year! I hope everyone will join us in 2010 by emailing me your dessert submissions. (The first round-up is Winter/Valentine Desserts on Feb 11!)
January Edition
Valentine's Edition
St. Patrick's Day Edition
Easter Parade of Goodies
Cupcake Round-Up
Cake Round-Up
Cool Summer Treats
Muffins & Breads
Cookie Round-up
Fall/Halloween Edition
Family Favorites Edition
Christmas & Holly Bloggy Edition

The Secrets to My Success (With Filing)
Organizing Your Recipe Binder
Cabinet Organizing
Cleaning & Organizing Tips for Shelves and Surfaces

Party Planning:
Inspired Shower Tables
Wedding Shower Cupcakes
Parade of Wedding Cakes
Wedding & Shower Invitations

Potato Soup
Easy Chicken & Dumplins
Chicken Lasagna
Easy Cinnamon Sticks
Broccoli Cheddar Chicken & Mashed Potatoes
Crock Pot Roast Chicken
Banana Bread
Barbecue Chicken Pizza
Bacon Cheeseburger Skillet

From The Desk of Rebel & Dixie:

Hope you enjoy the links!

Have a have a fabulous New Year and Lots of Luck in 2010!


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Coleman $25 Giftcard Giveaway

The Christmas shopping season may be over, but that doesn't mean the fun has to end, particularly if you received a gift card or two in your stocking this year!

Now how would you like a chance to get a free gift card after Christmas? Well, here's your chance!

Twitter Contest
Coleman is having a great contest on Twitter. For 50 days they are giving away one $25 gift card a day! To enter the giveaway all you have to do is follow Coleman on Twitter. Then tweet them the answer to the following question: What would you buy this holiday season with a giftcard from Coleman?" And don't forget to put @colemancampfire somewhere in your tweet! (Entries are limited to one entry per twitter account per day, and the contest is for US residents only.)

Blog Contest
And in addition to the big giveaway going on at Twitter, we're also having a blog giveaway!
Coleman is also offering one $25 Giftcard to one Simply Sweet Home reader. Deadline to Enter: January 13 at 11pm.

How to Enter:
1. Follow
Coleman on Twitter.

2. Leave a comment on this post, telling us what you would buy this holiday season with your $25 giftcard from Coleman.

(*Please note: You must do both steps to be eligible to win. If you leave a comment but are not following Coleman at the time of the drawing, you will be disqualified from the contest.)

Additional Entries:

-Bonus Entry: Leave a comment telling me something you'd like to see more of at this blog.

-One entry for following me publicly on blogger.

-One entry for joining my feedblitz mailing list, or 2 entries if you are already a member prior to this giveaway.

-One entry for subscribing in a reader.

-One entry for following or subscribing to my new business blog.

-One entry for following me on twitter and/or becoming a fan on facebook.

-One entry for tweeting about this giveaway.

-Two entries for writing about this giveaway on your blog and linking back to Simply Sweet Home.

(Just leave comments for each additional entry, and please leave a user name/link or something so that I can verify. Thanks!)

Other Rules:

-US Residents only.

-And don't forget, if you don't have a blog or a profile with a visible email address, please include your email address in your comment so that I can contact you if you win. (Can't stress this enough!)


Click here to see the entire Giveaway Blog Hop List....

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Monday, December 28, 2009

Ham & Cheese Crescents

I hope you all had a good Christmas! Now it's time to move on to New Year's. So how about some appetizers? Here's something easy you can make for the kids. (If they have something they like, then maybe they won't complain about the spinach dip and other adult apps!)

And speaking of New Year's, if anyone out there has a resolution to get organized and/or start meal planning, be sure to enter my 500th Post Giveaway. I'm giving away a membership to the Relish Menu Planning Website. It's the perfect tool to help you get your meals organized in 2010!

Recipe for Ham & Cheese Crescents:


1-2 Can Crescent Rolls
About 3pieces of thin sliced ham for each roll
1/2 piece of cheese for each roll.
Directions: Place ham and cheese on crescent roll. (I like to put 1/2 the ham on, then add cheese, and then add the rest of the ham.) Then just roll them up, and bake as directed on the crescent roll package. (Sometimes I leave them in a little longer, about 2-3 minutes) Serve with dipping sauces if you desire. (Ranch or Honey Mustard is great!) Then just enjoy!



I'm posting a link to this post on the following sites:
Tempt My Tummy Tuesday is hosted by
Blessed With Grace.
Homemaker Mondays is hosted by
11th Heaven’s Homemade Haven.
Tasty Tuesday is hosted by Balancing Beauty & Bedlam.
Works for Me Wednesday is hosted by We Are THAT Family
DIY Day at A Soft Place to Land

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Relish! Menu Planning Review & Giveaway!

As you all know I love organizing and menu planning. Needless to say, when I got an email asking me to review the Relish! Meal Planning Website, I was really exited, and now I'm excited to be giving away a free membership in honor of my 500th post!

Meal planning can really help you to save money, and it will save you a lot of time. This website would be a great tool for everyone whether you're a beginner or an expert at menu planning, and it's very user friendly.

There are a lot of great features that I think you'll find very helpful. On your main screen, you'll find a list of meals to choose from, and each week there's a different list of recipes featured here. The page instructs you to choose 5 meals and one dessert from the menus. On this page there is also a list titled "Dime and Dash," which gives you a list of quick and inexpensive express meals to choose from.

And on this page you'll also see a section for favorites. Each week when you create a menu, you can choose to add certain meals to your favorites section, and once these are added to favorites, they will always appear on your menu planning screen. I really like this feature because it allows you to throw a couple of things that you know your family loves in with the new recipes that you select from the menu screen.

Another great feature on the main menu screen is the Recipe Legend. Beside each meal is a symbol which describes what kind of meal it is, and the legend tells you what each of the symbols mean. For example, KF means Kid Friendly. C equals Crockpot. LC means lower calorie. And M means Morning Prep.

And of course, the site is equipped with all the recipes you need. On the main menu planning screen, just click on a meal, and you'll be directed to a printer friendly page with all the recipes that you need for a particular meal. And to make this feature even better and more useful to you, there is a pull down menu where you can select how many people the meal will be for, and the recipe cards that you view will be adjusted to fit the number of people in your family. Super!

Another favorite feature of mine is the shopping list component. Once you've selected the meals you want for your menu, click "create custom menu" and the site directs you to a shopping list. In the first column is a list of "Items You Need but May Already Have." (Things like milk, butter, and spices.) And then all your other shopping list items are organized into food groups, and the shopping list even includes the quanity of ingredients you need. (So if you've selected 2 different meals that include chicken breasts, and you have 4 family members, your shopping list will have 8 chicken breasts on it.) The shopping list even goes as far as to tell you how many eggs you need, or what size package of chili powder you'll need.

Now let's say you go on the main menu screen, and none of the featured recipes sound good to you. No problem! Just visit the Menu Archive, and you'll find a ton of other options, or pull up your Past Menus. But let's say, you already have a list of favorite recipes on rotation in your house, and you want to add these recipes in with one or two of the Relish recipes each week. No problem again! If you have a favorite recipe, just submit it to Relish, and they will convert it to a meal and put it up with entrees in your favorites list.

Another part of this website that I found very interesting was the "This & That Section." This section includes a list of special menus. They feature menus for special occasions like Dinner Parties & BBQs, Superbowl, Lunches, Gourmet Potluck, Easter Brunch, Christmas, and Mother's Day. And the section also includes a list of fun menus for kids of all ages. The list included several movie themed menus including Ratatoille, Kung Fu Panda, Ice Age, and even Twilight. Sounds fun, huh? And I think this section could make your party planning a breeze.

I'm excited to be giving away a One Year Membership to Relish! to one Simply Sweet Home reader. This is a $58.80 value!

Giveaway is Now Closed.

Additional Entries:

-Bonus Entry: Tell me something you'd like to see more of on this blog in 2010 (recipes, organizing, crafts, party planning, deals, etc.)

-One entry for following me publicly on blogger.

-One entry for joining my feedblitz mailing list, or 2 entries if you are already a member prior to this giveaway.

-One entry for subscribing in a reader.

-One entry for following or subscribing to my new business blog.

-One entry for following me on twitter and/or becoming a fan on facebook.

-One entry for tweeting about this giveaway.

-Two entries for writing about this giveaway on your blog and linking back to Simply Sweet Home.

(Just leave comments for each additional entry, and please leave a user name/link or something so that I can verify. Thanks!)

Other Rules:

-Don't forget, if you don't have a blog or a profile with a visible email address, please include your email address in your comment so that I can contact you if you win. (Can't stress this enough!)


MckLinky Blog Hop

Click here to see the entire Giveaway Blog Hop List....

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Thursday, December 24, 2009

Holly Bloggy Christmas Memories & Traditions & My 500th Post

Today's my last post before Christmas, and it's also the final day of the Holly Bloggy Christmas After Party. BIG THANKS one last time to everyone who attended and posted something for the events last week! (Prize announcements still to come! Sorry, but with the holiday's it's taking a little longer to get everything settled!)

This also happens to be my 500th Post! Can you believe it? Me Either! But I'm very proud of this little milestone! I had planned on posting a giveaway today but with the holidays coming, I doubt many people will be online to see it till next week anyway, so I'll be posting something then! So be sure to come back for the giveaway!

Today I'm featuring some bloggers from the Christmas Memories and Traditions event. All week I was psyched to see all the great recipes, crafts, homemade gifts, and trees. And I was very curious about what kinds of things would be posted for the Memories and Traditions events. I mean, homemade gifts is fairly wide open; you could basically submit anything that you've made, but I wasn't really sure what to expect with the memories and traditions event. But of course, my fellow bloggers did not disappoint! And as I suspected there was such a variety in the posts!
No photos with today's featured links, simply because there was such a variety of posts, I'm not sure how I'd work all the photos together in one post without it looking a little strange. I won't list everyone of course, because I want you to visit Tidy Mom if you didn't go by last week.

-Sarah at Our Pumpkin & Sweet Pea and Teresa at Blooming on Bainbridge were among the bloggers that share some Christmas food traditions!

-Kristen from
Hope Abound and Lucy from Lucy's Life shared stories of their first Christmas with their husbands.

-Hallee from
Hallee the Homemaker and Mary at Giving Up On Perfect shared childhood memories.

-Renae at
Just for the Joy of It and Mum Powers at
Three A's and a C shared Ornament-Related Traditions.

-And Brooke from
How Does She... shared a number of Frugal & Fun Christmas Tradition ideas.

And there are a lot more where these came from. For the full of list of posts visit Tidy Mom.

Merry Christmas
And A Happy New Year!



Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Sweet Thursday: Christmas & Holly Bloggy Edition

If you're not hungry and craving sugar, you will be after today's post! Today is the Christmas/Holly Bloggy edition of Sweet Thursday! For those of you who are new to my blog, Sweet Thursday is my monthly dessert recipe event. Each month bloggers submit desserts that they'd like to have featured here, and each month we have a different theme to follow!

For this month, the theme is Christmas Recipes of course! And today, I'm actually combining Sweet Thursday with the Holly Bloggy After Party. (Sorry to those of you who submitted non-dessert recipes at the Holly Bloggy. Originally I had planned to do Sweet Thursday separate from the Holly Bloggy features, but as we are pressed for time this week, I had no choice but to combine them!)

After you take a look at today's featured treats, be sure to go over to the Holly Bloggy Recipe Event if you haven't already. There are a bunch more desserts listed there, as well as other non-sweet Christmas recipes to take a look at.

Next Sweet Thursday Event: Due to my schedule (and a need for a little break), I'm skipping out on Sweet Thursday in January. However, I will have a round up on February 11. For the theme, you have two choices this time: "Winter OR Valentine Desserts." Send your submission by email at

Chocolate Trifle from: The Kreative Kottage

Chocolate Coated Almond Toffee from: Lucy's Kitchen

Frozen Chocolate-Peanut Butter Pie from Sweet and Savory Says it All

Choco Chippy Sugar Cookies from Vanilla Strawberry Springfields

Caramel Pretzel Delights from: Magnolia Mom

Peppermint Pleasures from Moore Minutes

Black-Out Cake from Sweet and Savory Says it All

Mint Chocolate Chip Cookies from: Frugal Femina

Mouse Cookies from: Almost Unschoolers

Gluten-Free Coffee Cake from: Marine Corps Nomad

Caramel Apple Accidental Upside Down Cake from: Go Ahead and Snicker

Red Velvet Shortbread Cookies from: Three A's and a C

Chewy Chunky Blondie from Sweet and Savory Says it All

Red Velvet Cake Balls from Calamity Anne


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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Holly Bloggy Christmas Crafts

I don't do very much crafting...probably because in school my art was never very good. I always excelled more at music and writing. I just started making jewelry this year, and in the past I've occasionally done a craft project or two. But I do want to try more stuff. I see so many tutorials out there, and I think to myself, "I can do that! It may not be as easy for me as they make it look, but still I think I could possibly do this!"

So one of my goals next year is to try some of these projects, or at least start small: try one or two and get really good at them. Then that should make it easier for me to learn more things in the future. Heidi from Blue Eyed Blessings hosted a fabulous craft party for us last week. Today I'm featuring just a few of the projects that were submitted to the event. I know you guys will love these! And after you check these out, be sure to go over to Heidi's blog and check out all the other wonderful ideas! It may be too late to make some of these. Although if you're needing a last minute gift, several of these are actually projects that you can do fairly quickly. And if all else fails, you'll get some fabulous ideas to bookmark for next year.

Jingle Bell Shadow Box from Blue Eyed Blessings

Elegant Pine Cone Ornament from A Scrap Mom's Musings

Monogram Ornament from: Sweet Pea

Decoupage Ornaments from: Sweetly Southern

Light Bulb Ornament from: Crafts by Amanda

Blue & Silver Wreath from: Eug


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Monday, December 21, 2009

Holly Bloggy Christmas Trees

I just love Christmas Trees! It's always been one of my favorite things about the season. If you haven't been by A Baby Changes Everything to see all the great trees from the Holly Bloggy, you should definitely stop by. (Not to mention, Teresa has a Tree Decorating business, and the trees she shares on her blog every day are amazing!)

Again today, it was very difficult just picking a few trees to feature! In fact, several of the ladies featured here today have more than one tree in their home, so in some cases it was even difficult picking just one tree from a single post! So be sure to visit these ladies and take a look at their beautiful work. (And go by the party too b/c everyone did a great job---it's just impossible for me to feature everyone!)

Pez Tree from Hoosier Homemade

From Perfect Harmony

From: The Adventures of Miss V

From: Adventures in Decorating

From: A Mommy's Blessings

Embellished Bayou

From: A Baby Changes Everything


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Sunday, December 20, 2009

Holly Bloggy After Party: Homemade Gifts

As promised, all week I'll be featuring some ideas from the Holly Bloggy. Here are just a few of the fabulous ideas that were submitted to the Homemade Gift Event over at Tater Tots and Jello. It was nearly impossible to pick just a few items to feature. Everything looks so great! I finally managed to pick out a handful, but I must say, if you haven't been over to Jen's place yet, you have to go over there and take a look around and all the great ideas!

From: Cosmogirl's Emporium
I just love these cones. The creator filled these with candy and set them out on the table at resturant where she was meeting friends. What a creative idea! And hangers would also make them a perfect tree ornament after all that candy is gone!

From: {AE Filkens}
Isn't this plate adorable? I just love personalized stuff. I really need to try some of this mod podge stuff. I'm always seeing the coolest projects made with it!

From: The Boatwright Family
And more mod podge! These coasters were made with wrapping paper! So if you like to do mod podge or any kind of paper crafts but you're on a budget, this is an inexpensive option for you! I just love the designs used here! So festive!

From: Harried Mom of Four
These little bowls look so elegant, and when you add a candle inside they give off a beautiful glow! Jen's also created a lovely star, which I'd love to have on my tree!

From: Paper Glue Etc.
You guys never cease to amaze me with your creativity! This message board was made from an old window! I love that it's a decorative yet purposeful gift, and it's also personalized! Fantastic!

From: Tidy Mom
Cheryl made these great sugar scrubs! I've seen a lot of homemade spa gifts but none made with sugar! This is definitely on my list of future projects to try!

From: Tater Tots and Jello
Here's another project I've been wanting to try! I just love these jars full of delicious ingredients. Jen filled these with everything you need to make spiced hot chocolate. Yum! And aren't accents cute?


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Uprinting Postcard Giveaway

My fantastic sponsors at Uprinting have just given me another great offer. They will be sending me 100 - 4x6 postcards. And the best part for you guys is that I will also be giving away 100 postcards to one of my loyal readers!

This is such a great prize! Next year I'm going to start selling some of the jewelry I've made, and these postcards will be perfect to send out with my orders!

If you have a business, you could do the same! Or perhaps you'd like to use these for gift certificates, coupons, or promotional announcements.

And these can easily be incorporated into your personal life as well. Use them for birth or baptism announcements, invitations, thank you cards, or anything else that your mind can imagine!

*I must tell you that the shipping policies for all Uprinting giveaways have changed. All giveaway winners will be required to pay for shipping costs. But this is still a great deal. These are high quality, professional prints and nearly a $50 value, so even if you have to pay $8-$10, it's totally worth it to get these fabulous cards!*

One Simply Sweet Home reader will win 100 postcards:

Size: 4x6; Paper: 14pt Cardstock Gloss; Printing: Full color both sides

To enter, just leave a comment telling us how you plan to use this prize. Deadline: Jan 1 at 7PM Central.

Additional Entries:
-Two entries for posting about this giveaway at your blog.
-One entry for being a follower on blogger.
-One entry for being an email subscriber, or two entries if you are already a subscriber prior to this giveaway.
-One entry each for following me on
twitter and/or becoming a fan on facebook.
-One entry for tweeting about this giveaway.
-One entry for submitting something to this month's Sweet Thursday Dessert Round-up.

Other Rules: Don't forget to leave an email address if you do not have one posted on your blog or profile. Otherwise we won't be able to contact you if you win! Also, if you're doing the extra entries, leave something in the comments section so that I can verify your extra entry (twitter user id, status link, etc. Thanks!)


MckLinky Blog Hop

Click here to see the entire Blog Hop List....

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