Category Archives: pinterest

Camp Mom: Sponge Balls

When I am doing a craft type project I don’t always include B. I usually weigh a few factors like difficulty, potential fun, time needed & learning opportunities.

When I came across this tutorial on Pinterest, I initially thought it would be fun to make these with him as part of our “camp mom” experience. They reminded me of an activity we had at camp….the Greased Watermelon Game. It was a tradition at camp that was just as fun to watch as it was to play (maybe more!). These reminded me of water mayhem in the same way (minus chunks of crisco floating in the pool/lake).

When it came down to it, I tried making a few first before deciding to do them on my own. They weren’t that fun or interesting to make, just repetitive. Don’t get me wrong they weren’t difficult….a perfect mindless activity in front of the TV. The last deciding factor was that there didn’t seem to be any real learning that I could apply. Maybe counting? Or even multiplication? Damn! Now I think of it!

But seriously, I think this one is all about the end result. FUN FUN FUN!!

You need between 2 & 3 sponges for each ball. I heard from someone else that 2 works great, but in an airhead turn of events, I ended up with 96 sponges!! (Basically I purchased a 24-pack on Amazon, not realizing that each pack contained 4 sponges! doh!) I put some sponges aside for some fun painting activities later, and ended up with about 28 balls. It was actually perfect because we have our big family reunion this weekend & I bet they’ll be a hit with the kids & adults alike.

The only change I made was to the string. The only floss I had was the satin finish kind, and it kept slipping out of my fingers. Instead I used these clear elastic hair ties, wrapped twice around each bundle of 12 sponge strips (each sponge get’s cut in half & then in half again, making 4 pieces per sponge). They worked great! I was able to manage the project myself & after a few days of rough play, they are still going strong. Not one broken one in the bunch!

First we tried them out at the beach…way fun!

They got pretty sandy, but a quick rinse in the sink when we got home & they were as good as new.

Next up was the pool. Good times!

These are a great replacement to water balloons. They have the same effect…. They’ll soak you if they are full of water. But you can use them over & over. And the kids loved them!

So go check out this tutorial & let me know if you make them!

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Popcorn Treats

If you don’t like Rice Krispie Treats, then you should just stop reading this blog now. Because clearly we’re not friends. Because I am not friends with crazy people. Ok, I am….most of my friends are nut jobs. But not THAT nuts.

To continue the theme of Pinterest, here is a recipe that I found. I originally planned to make it over the 4th of July weekend. I thought it fit the wacky dessert theme that was started with the Snicker Salad. Yeah, that was a big winNAR as well. Seriously. It sounds ca-RAY-ZEY. But it rocked my socks. And dontchya know, a certain preggo lady loved it too. Oh, and the 5 year old. shocker. It actually tastes like a light summery dish. Which clearly it IS NOT.

So here’s the original post. But I changed it up a bit. First of all, I halved it, because the kid & the hubby ate half of the m&ms and some of the marshmallows, before I had a chance to make it. Speaking of m&ms, I switched to peanut ones. Cause I’m crazy. I doubled the butter. Why not? Actually it’s because I made that mistake years ago when making Rice Krispies & I have never gone back. I formed them more like Krispies too, and not like the original recipe. And lastly, I changed the way I cooked the butter too. I let it brown just a tiny bit. It adds a toasty flavor, like a roasted marshmallow to the end. It comes out a bit more “cream” colored than the “bright white” that it would normally be. It is not crucial that you do this, but it is crucial that you don’t overdo it, otherwise it will taste burnt.
With out further ado, here is my version.
Popcorn Treats
Ingredients:
1 bag of microwave popcorn (I used butter lovers)
1 cup of pretzel sticks, broken up, but not crushed
1 cup of peanut m&ms
1 stick of butter
8 oz of mini marshmallows (4 cups)
cooking spray for pan
Pop your popcorn & separate the popped kernels from the unpopped kernals (say that 10 times fast). I found that the easiest way to do this is to pour it into one bowl, shake the bowl & then grab handfuls to transfer to another bowl. The shaking helps get the unpopped kernels to the bottom.
Prepare your pan by spraying the bottom & sides with cooking spray (or coat with butter). I used a 9×9 glass pan.

Combine popcorn, pretzels and m&ms in a bowl. Set aside.

In a medium sauce pan, melt butter on med-high eat. Once it’s melted, you can continue to cook until it gets slightly browned, but watch carefully because it can burn quickly. You can also skip the browning step & just add the marshmallows.

Once marshmallows are in, turn the heat down to med-low & stir constantly until fully melted & butter is completely combined. This works best if you use a heat resistant spatula.
Pour over popcorn mixture & quickly stir to combine.
Once the popcorn is fully coated, pour into the prepared pan. You can use your spatula or spoon to press the mixture down, compacting as much as possible. I also like to spray my hands with cooking spray & use my hands to press down. I do this with Rice Krispies as well. Cover with a top or foil & cool.
You’re supposed to wait an hour. I think we lasted 20 mins.

Well worth the wait. Yum.

The Pinterest

Oh Pinterest, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways. As of today I have 1304 pins. So, yeah. I lurve ya a lot.

Clearly if I am going to continue to spend time on this I need to make sure I am getting something out of it. Other than just inspiration for a shit ton (that’s metric) of projects I’ll never do.
Don’t get me wrong. I’ve done several things that I’ve found on there, but mostly food. And I’ve never been a slacker when it comes to finding & using recipes online. I likes to cook. I’m thinking there might be a connection to my weight. hmmmm, something to explore. later.
So, as I was saying. Yeah foods. I do that. If you want to see some of the stuff that has made it onto my “Proved it’s Merit” list, check it out here. I’ll definitely post food stuff. That goes with out saying. Yet I just said it anyway. Bygones.
So, the point to this rambling post is to announce my own personal Pinterest Challenge. I’d like to accomplish one pinterest project a week. I can’t promise that I won’t start pinning ridiculously easy to finish projects just to meet my goal. babysteps.
For starters, here are a few things I’ve already completed.
Is anyone else doing Pinterest? Interested in plugging away with me? Have anything you’ve done that you found there? Loved it? Hated it? Please share.