Monday, 27 April 2020

Made: 3D Shadowbox Cards

Time for another tutorial!  For some reason, the sound in this one is not... great.  I'm not sure why; I used the same microphone.  Ah, technology.  So awesome, and so annoying at the same time.

Just like Quarantine (nice segue?), I made some Happy Mail for people since we're still in Quarantine, and found out that schools will be closed until May 31st 2020 now.  However, today there is supposed to be an announcement About the plan to "open up society" again.  I have no plans in going out until its safe again.  So, there's that.

ANYWAYS, tutorial!  I filmed a tutorial on how to make these cards.  They are fun to make, and I made a couple of them with some of my paper stash.

Heh, "I don't need therapy, I talk to my plants."  Would be funny if it weren't very true of me and my quarantine experience.  I even named my plants.  When they droop and need water, I call them drama queens.  Ah, I have fun.

Here are the materials you will need to make your own Shadowbox cards:

  • 1 piece of card stock cut to 8.5" x 11"
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Paper trimmer (not necessary but nice to have)
  • Scoring board (again, not necessary but nice to have)
  • Bone folder
  • Die cuts or stickers to decorate your card
  • Foam tape
  • Cut Card stock into 2 pieces, 1- 8.5" x 8.5" and 1- 2.5" x 8.5"
  • On the 8.5" x 8.5" piece, score on each side at 0.5", 1", 1.5", 2" 
  • Score on 2 opposite side at 2.5" and 6" (these are a cutting guide)
  • On the 2.5" x 8.5" piece, score at 1", 2" 5" and 8"
  • Liner pieces for the inside of the card measure 3" x 3" and 3.25" x 3.25"
Template- Cut away the pieces in grey.

And the video tutorial:

Saturday, 25 April 2020

Quarantine Food Diary: Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Loaf

Welp.  This is all your fault California Girl.  I had to make some.

I saw this peanut butter bread on another blog, and INSTANTLY got a craving. Its doesn't take much to make me crave peanut butter.

I was in a training session and we were introducing ourselves with one of those silly games-- you know, the kind that no one seems to want to do, but we all go along with it anyways-- and we had to talk about our dream meal.  People had some really fancy foods in their fantasy meal: steak with potatoes and fiddlehead greens; a grandmother's chicken and dumpling stew with a martini or whatever.  And then it got to my turn.

I said peanut butter.  'Cause that's my favourite food!  I have simple tastes.  Ok, many not such simple tastes... more a 6-year-old's palate.

So if someone has a recipe for peanut butter ANYTHING, I'm down.  I'm going to make it.  If there's a chance I could add chocolate to it, then its definitely happening.  

I didn't stick to the recipe, because apparently it wasn't that peanut buttery.  That's just not ok.  Also, I'm not a vegan-- but my husband is gluten-free/ dairy-free so this is how I made it.

Makes one loaf.
Prep Time: 20 mins Bake time: 60 mins


  • 3/4 to 1 cup peanut butter (You choose your level of PBness- the more PB, the moister your cake)
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups Bob's Red Mill 1-to-1 AP flour
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt
  • 3/4 cup milk, I used almond milk
  • 1 cup (or way more) chocolate chips (reserve some to sprinkle on top)
  1. Preheat oven to 350F degrees.  Grease a loaf pan or line with parchment paper. 
  2. In one bowl, mix the peanut butter and sugar, add eggs and vanilla until well mixed.
  3. Whisk dry ingredients in a separate bowl.  Combine milk and yogurt in a 3rd bowl.
  4. Add 1/2 the dry mix to the peanut butter mixture, mix well, then add 1/2 the yogurt mixture.  Alternate adding the dry and yogurt mix once more until just combined.  
  5. Fold in the chocolate chips, and spoon into loaf pan.  Sprinkle chocolate chips on top.
  6. Bake for an hour, until a toothpick poked into the loaf comes out clean.  
Should keep for a week in an airtight container.

One confession:  I didn't have enough chocolate chips, so I took other chocolate I had from a box I got for Valentine's day, and chopped that up to put inside, and used the chips for the top.  It may have been too much chocolate  It was the right amount.

Ok, two confessions: This did not last as long as it should... About 3 days in my house.  So I don't really know how long it will keep.  Maybe freeze some if you're not a PB and chocolate fiend.

Tuesday, 21 April 2020

Quarantine Thoughts- Part 1

  1. I should miss going places more than I do.  Right?  I think I may be built for lockdowns.  I don't miss going outside.  I don't miss restaurants, parks, movie theatres... Any of it.  I like being able to stay in and not be judged for it- you know, the people who say "but its such a nice day outside!"  

  2. We are out of meat, and milk and almost eggs.  We order our food more than 2 weeks in advance, and usually don't get the entire order.  I can't go into the stores because I'm high risk due to my lung condition; so I'm at the mercy of the staff.  It's stressful.  I'm lucky though, because if we are really stuck, D can go in and pick up things and knock down old people if necessary. (joking. sort of.) 

  3. FREAKING HOARDERS! Why do you need 1000 rolls of TP? So that other can't get any?  Then they feel the need to hoard too, and then no one can get anything because you drive up scarcity.  Think, people!

  4. I think its pretty funny that people who thought they could be profiteers with the TP and hand sanitizer are stuck with all the stuff they bought.  This one grocery manager basically told people "tough titties" for buying too much TP, and no they can't return it.  Ah, sweet justice.

  5. I was talking to D and I wondered, "If it was the end of the world, would be even know?  If its not a huge event, but a virus that moves through the population, how long would it be before we knew it was the beginning of the end?  What would be the signs?"  Isn't that a happy thought?  No more dystopian books for me for a while.

Friday, 17 April 2020

Now on Bloglovin'!

Hey there! Since I'm into reading new blogs, I signed up to Bloglovin'. I thought, if you're interested in a random-blog with stuff to do, you could follow me there.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Thursday, 16 April 2020

Quarantine Food Diary: Homemade Granola Formula

The food situation during this Quarantine is not ideal for me... I'm unable to go into grocery stores due to being so high risk for complications if I get COVID-19 so I have to depend on the pick-up service and that hasn't gone... smoothly.  No shade to the workers who are doing their best; its just we've had to get creative with meals since we can only get food every 2 and a half weeks.

So naturally, things are going to run out.  Like my favourite granola.  And it's out of stock because the company is having difficulty sourcing ingredients.  So... I made my own.  And its pretty good.

I thought I would share the formula- not a recipe per se as you control everything about this granola.  Don't like it sweet?  You adjust the sweetener. Don't have any almonds?  that's cool, I've made it with every nut on hand- even salted peanuts and it was pretty good.  This is a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure recipe, hence me calling it a formula.

This granola is everything you store bought granola is.  You can eat it with yogurt, milk, other milks... I think you will really like it.  And it's easy to make.

Stephanie's Granola Formula


  • 3 cups oats (for gluten-free use GF oats, or popped rice cereal, or puffed quinoa.  Most grains will work here)
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds (or pecans pieces; walnuts [but only a 1/4 cup they can be bitter]; peanuts, any nut you have on hand.  I use salted nuts once, just use 1/4 cup and increase the sweetener to compliment the salty.  It good if you like the salty/sweet combo.)
  • 1 cup mixed seeds (I used 1/4 cup flax, 1/4 cup chia, 1/4 cup pepitas/ green pumpkin seeds and 1/4 cup sunflower.  You can use any combination that you have, but I would go too heavy on the flax seeds.)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup dry sweetener (Your choice.  Brown sugar, white sugar, stevia, What ever.  You can even use liquid sweetener like Maple Syrup, or honey-- just note that your granola will be stickier than if you use a dry sweetener.  Use the amount to your taste.  Or go hardcore and have no sweetener at all!)
  • 1/2 oil (I used coconut oil that I melted in the microwave, but you can use vegetable oil, melted butter/ margarine, flax oil, corn oil, even olive oil but it will have a distinct taste of the oil if you use a heavy oil like that- not bad, just noticeable.)
  • 1 tsp of cinnamon (optional, but nice)
  • 1 cup of any after baking add-ins you might like (raisins, dried fruit, coconut flakes (if using sweetened cut sugar to 1/4 cup) 


  • Heat oven to 350F and line a lasagna pan or 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.  Or don't line it if you like washing dishes.
  • In a large bowl, add the oats, nuts, seed, sweetener, spices and oil and mix so that the oil coats everything.
  • Spread on the pan(s) and bake for 15-20 mins, then flip and mix with a spatula, and put back in the oven to bak for 10-15 mins more.
  • Take out of the oven, and let cool, stir while cooling to avoid clumps- unless you like clumps, then rock on.
  • Store in air-tight container for up to 3 weeks. 

I really like it and its not too labour intensive so I make it a lot now.  My granola bill has significantly reduced too.  Not like I had a huge granola budget before... ANYWAYS, you should try it.  Its great!

I like my granola with yogurt and bananas.  How do you eat your granola? 

Tuesday, 14 April 2020

Made: 3x3 Card and Card Holder

Sometimes you just want to make a bunch of little gifts to give to people so that they can have a bright spot in their day. Since its week 4 of Quarantine for me, I decided to make little things to give to the people that help me get food, and deliver medicine to me just so that they have one little nice thing in this dreary time.

So I made a tutorial, just in case you want something quick and cute to make to give to someone who could use a pick-me-up.


1 12" x 12" sheet of 3" x 3" cut aparts (I used the Craft Smart Llama Love)
1- 6 1/2" x 7 1/2" solid coloured cardstock
1- design paper cut to 3 1/4" x 4"
1- design paper cut to 3 1/4" x 1 1/2"
5- kraft card stock (or any colour for card bases) cut to 6" x 3"
5 3x3 envelopes
Ribbon to decorate (optional)
Paper Trimmer (optional)


Who are some people that you can make these for?

Wednesday, 1 April 2020

Made: DIY Journals

I thought that I would try binding a book, so I made a little journal from scratch.  It was quite the ordeal-- and the video I taped was not helpful.  I should post it purely for entertainment value-- but it would make all actual book diners (bookies? no... that's something else) cringe with anger.  So you will have to settle for pictures of my final (finally!) project.

For materials I used American Crafts "Wildflower" paper collection (which is really hard to find!), some chipboard and plain white paper.

Because I like pockets in my notebooks, I put on in and added some uplifting cards to remind me that this Q-Tine can't last forever.

I used the We R Memory Keepers Bookbinding tool to put it together.  It was pretty easy to use, and it comes with everything you need to bind your first book (Even thread- even though the reviews say it doesn't.).

I used some embroidery thread that I swiped across a beeswax candle for more slide as I sewed the binding.  Sometimes its nice to have a pop of colour where you aren't expecting it.

If you want to make your own journal, here are some tutorials that are way better then what I would have come up with.  I'm going to follow the experts for the next one I make.

Sea Lemon Book Binding Stitches- Jen is a book binder extraordinaire.  She has a whole playlist on book making for every style.

SundayMornings- Journal making 3 Ways- She gives you 3 different styles of journals AND step-by-step instructions on making them using what you have on hand.

DIY Art Journal for Beginners- Johanna uses an old book as the start of her journal-- way to recycle all those books you are clearing out since the big clean you did while being at home!

If you are anything like me- you have many notebooks- but being able to make your own is great.  You can make a notebook that suits your style and needs!  I will be trying this again.

Have you ever made a book?  Are you a book binder?  Any tips to share?