Tuesday, January 31, 2017

You Make My Heart Race- Free Printable Car Valentine


Are you looking for a fun valentine that doesn't include candy? This race car valentine is bound to be a favorite in your child's classroom! 



For this Valentine you will need:
  • the printable found at the end of this post
  • Toy Cars (we used these provided by Oriental Trading
  • scissors
  • bakers twine
  • a single hole punch

Print and cut out the paper valentine. Have you child address them to each child in their class. Using the single hole punch, punch a hole on either side of the valentine.

String a piece of bakers twine through both holes to make a loop. Slide the car through the loop. Tie the twine in a bow on the back of the card to secure the car to the card.

All of the kids in the class are going to love having a fun card and car to play with!

Stay tuned for more free Valentine Printables in the coming weeks!

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Race Car Valentine

Are you looking for more great idea for Valentine's Day? Find 40+ ideas from other bloggers below!



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Monday, January 30, 2017

Rubber Ducky Valentine


Are you ready for Valentine's Day yet? If not this easy printable Valentine will get you ready in a snap!

Rubber Duckie, you're the one! You make bath time lots of fun! This darling rubber duck valentine references everyone's favorite bathtime song and includes a darling Valentine's Day themed rubber duck.


For this Valentine you will need:

Print and cut out the paper valentine. Have you child address them to each child in their class. Using the single hole punch, punch a hole in the corner of each valentine.

Tie a piece of bakers twine around the rubber duck and through the valentine. Tie a bow to secure the duck.




These darling little ducks will be the hit of the party!

Stay tuned for more free Valentine Printables in the coming weeks!

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Rubber Duck Valentine
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Thursday, January 26, 2017

Crockpot Lit'l Smokies


This appetizer is amazingly delicious and so easy to make. You just need BBQ sauce and the secret ingredient. What's that? Grape jelly. Sounds crazy, but trust me. It's amazing.

You will need:

  • 1 cup BBQ Sauce
  • 3/4 cup grape jelly
  • 2 package of Lit'l Smokies


Dump the sauce and jelly into the crock pot and stir together. Empty the packages of Lit'l Smokies into the crock pot and stir until they are coated. Put the crock pot on low for 3-4 hours.

We love to serve these on game day or any time the family gets together! They are a tradition for us, my youngest calls them baby hot dogs. They are simply delicious!

It is a simple recipe, but if you need any help, there is a video below!


Enjoy!
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Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Let's Connect Valentine- Connect Four Valentine with Free Printable


Do you have a Connect Four fan in your house? Then they are going to flip for this fun Valentine that lets every one of their friends have a little game of their own!


For this Valentine you will need:

Print and cut out the paper valentine. Have you child address them to each child in their class. Using the single hole punch, punch a hole in the corner of each valentine and a hole in the corner of the Connect Four bag. There should be plenty of space to punch a hole above the seal so none of the little pieces fall out.

Tie a piece of bakers twine through the hole in the card and the hole in the Connect Four game.


This valentine is bound to be a class favorite. Who doesn't love a game of Connect Four? 

Stay tuned for more free Valentine Printables in the coming weeks!

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Connect Valentine
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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

You Spin Me Right Round- Pinwheel Valentine with Free Printable


Are you ready for Valentine's Day yet? If not this easy printable Valentine will get you ready in a snap!

This Pinwheel valentine cracks up parents and the kids love getting the pinwheels to go with them. I can't see to go a year without a sneaky 80s reference.



For this Valentine you will need:
  • the printable found at the end of this post
  • Pinwheels (we used these provided by Oriental Trading
  • scissors
  • bakers twine
  • a single hole punch

Print and cut out the paper valentine. Have you child address them to each child in their class. Using the single hole punch, punch a hole in the corner of each valentine.

Add the sticks to each of your pinwheels and then tie a piece of bakers twine around the pinwheel and through the hole in the card.



Your kids will have a blast putting together this fun candyless valentine and who doesn't love a pinwheel?

Stay tuned for more free Valentine Printables in the coming weeks!

Printables in this post are for personal use and available to subscribers of Housewife Eclectic only. To use this printable, please SUBSCRIBE NOW.

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Pinwheel Valentine
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Monday, January 23, 2017

Rethink Your Tortilla: Why You Should Ditch Flour and Embrace Corn Tortillas



When it comes to Mexican food, a tortilla is an important ingredient. After all, it's used in so many dishes, including tacos, enchiladas, burritos, taquitos, and more. Thanks to the Americanized version of Mexican food, most people are only familiar with flour tortillas. And while flour tortillas have their place, you may be missing out on new flavor opportunities by not branching out and embracing corn tortillas. So here's where I come down on the flour tortillas vs corn tortillas battle...

If you're unfamiliar with corn tortillas, they are much smaller and denser than their flour counterparts. There are different options of corn tortillas, including yellow corn and white corn. While both are good,  my family prefers the white corn. One of the potential drawbacks to corn tortillas is they are often more brittle than flour tortillas, so you may need to double up on the tortillas or put in less filling. But the added flavor is worth the slight nuisance.


Don't be Fooled by the Smaller Size

The smaller size is one of the appeals of corn tortillas. While you can get smaller brands of flour tortillas, like taco or fajita, the standard size is catered more toward burritos or enchiladas. This is great when you're making those meals, but can feel too large and cumbersome for tacos. Corn tortillas are perfect for a taco. The math is also in your favor with corn tortillas. You can eat four corn tortillas to two flour tortillas, and still usually come away consuming fewer calories.

Nutritional Edge Goes to Corn Tortillas

Speaking of nutritional value, corn tortillas top flour tortillas in many aspects, including:

  • being higher in fiber
  • lower in sugar
  • contain less sodium
  • lower in fat, including saturated fat
  • plus, the smaller size leads to better portion control

Authentic Flavor

Besides being smaller, corn tortillas pack some serious flavor. The enriched flour tortillas are, well, kind of boring, in a way white bread is boring. Yes, it's familiar, but it's lacking in flavor. On its own, a corn tortilla isn't particularly tastier than a flour tortilla, but when it's combined with other ingredients, the flavor of the corn tortilla joins in as its own distinct and powerful flavor. Plus, when you think of authentic Mexican food flavors, part of that authentic taste comes from the use of corn tortillas.

More Tortillas for Everyone

From a pure economic standpoint, corn tortillas are the way to go. A package of corn tortillas is fairly comparable in price to a package of flour tortillas, but you get more corn tortillas. A package of corn tortillas often comes with around 30 tortillas, compared to the typical dozen of flour tortillas. Again, corn tortillas are smaller, but it's still a good value.


Fry Corn Tortillas to Unleash the Flavors

Perhaps the greatest thing about corn tortillas is what happens when you deep fry them, making tasty dishes like taquitos. While fried flour tortillas are darn tasty in their own right, fried corn tortillas are amazing! The tortilla transforms into a firm, crispy, flaky shell that is really ideal for the hand held nature of taquitos. Plus, corn tortillas crisp up really fast in oil. Mmm, my mouth is watering just thinking about it.

Want to make your own homemade tortilla chips? Cut corn tortillas into quarters and deep fry them until they crisp and turn a golden brown. Place the chips on a paper towel lined plate and sprinkle with salt. They are not healthy at all and full of calories, but they are delicious!

Generally Gluten Free

You may need to check the packaging to be sure, but most corn tortillas are gluten free. By switching from flour tortillas to corn tortillas you can still enjoy your favorite Mexican food dishes. This is a huge win for people who struggle to find delicious gluten-free options.

OK, I'm Starting to Be Convinced, Now What Do I Make?

If you're ready to try out corn tortillas, here are a few options that work well with corn tortillas:
  • BBQ taquitos
  • Tacos (simply switch hard shells or soft flour shells with corn tortillas)
  • Enchiladas (these are really yummy when made with shredded meat)
  • Tortilla chips

Give it a try! It may take a bit to get used to at first, but try those BBQ taquitos and you'll be hooked.
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Friday, January 20, 2017

You Snuck Your Way Into My Heart- Ninja Valentine with Free Printable


Are you ready for Valentine's Day yet? We are still making lots of fun Valentine's Cards for you to print for your child's class. Today we bring you another fantastic candy-less option. I love when parents don't send candy, so I try not to either!

This Ninja valentine is so fun to pair with a little Ninja Toy like the Bendable Ninjas we used. Kids love them and they are affordable!



For this Valentine you will need:
  • the printable found at the end of this post
  • Ninja toys (we used these provided by Oriental Trading
  • scissors
  • bakers twine
  • a single hole punch

Print and cut out the paper valentine. Have you child address them to each child in their class. You can either punch one hole in the corner of the valentine and bend the Ninja's arms into a circle and tie bakers twine through his arms, or punch a hole on either side of the ninja on the card and attach him that way.


Your kids will have a blast putting together this fun candyless valentine and the kids who receive them will bending and molding their ninja. 


Stay tuned for more free Valentine Printables in the coming weeks!


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Ninja Valentine- You Snuck Your Way Into My Heart
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Wednesday, January 18, 2017

You Hit the Mark Valentine - With Cricut Print and Cut

This post is sponsored by Cricut. All ideas are my own. 

Valentine's Day is my absolute favorite crafting time of the year. There is something about punny valentines and red, white and pink that get my creative juices flowing. I have a sketchbook that I draw all of my ideas in and I am pretty sure my graphic designer husband groans every time I pull it out because it means I am going to be begging him to the computer side of the designing. This one I am proud to say it so easy you can make it all by yourself, no graphic designer needed. This software is so easy, here let me show you. 




To make this valentine you will need:

  • A Cricut
  • Design Space 
  • Paper 
  • A Printer
  • Sticky Darts (ummm.... these are SO much fun!) 


I made this entire design using simple shapes in Design Space. You can find my design here, or make it yourself.  I inserted circles using the insert shapes button and resized them using the basic arrows to get the size I wanted for each one. You can change the color of each circle by clicking on the object in the layers pallet. After I had each circle the size and color I wanted, I selected all of the circles together and then right clicked and hit group. This will make the image be one item instead of a bunch of different circles. You will notice that you your circle in the layer pallet on the side has a little pair of scissors by it. Click on the image and trade it for the little printer icon on all of the circles but the very outer circle. Add your text around dart board. The words I used were "You Hit The Mark, Valentine." 



Hit the large Go button. It will tell you to print the page before you continue. Hit the green print page button and print your valentine using your home printer.


Your valentine will print with black registration marks around it. This is what will allow the Cricut to know where your design is and cut it out correctly.


Line up the paper in the corner of your mat and load it in your Cricut. Since you are using paper you might want to use a light stick mat or an older regular stick mat. The machine will scan the valentine and then cut it out. 



To increase the accuracy of print and cut you can calibrate your machine to your printer under Machine Settings, calibration. It will have you print another sheet of paper and then scan it and test cut to improve the accuracy of your print and cut projects. 

 After your machine cuts our your valentine, all you need to do is attach the dart to the paper. Since the dart is sticky, just stick it in the bullseye and you are ready to go. My daughter is addressing these on the back of the Valentine but you can add a to and from box if you want.

What print and cut projects do you want to make? 
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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.