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My Very Educated Mother copyright 2008-2020. All rights reserved. Powered by Blogger.

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Fall Crafting with Pipe Cleaners

Pipe Cleaners aren't just for kids crafts! Use them to create fun fall decorations!

This Crafty Hangout is sponsored by Darice Crafts, as always the views expressed are my own. 

Pipe cleaners aren't just for kids crafts! 

Use them to create fun fall projects like pumpkin patches or apple branches that can be 
incorporated into just about any decorative piece.

Apple branches added to a simple candle votive would make a fun Teacher's gift!

Paired with a great apple scented candle wouldn't that make a great teacher's gift?

Watch the video to see how I shaped everything and put it all together.

Don't forget to stop by Darice Crafts for more great crafting ideas! 
Erin Sipes
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The Fab Furniture Flippin' Contest: Geometric Dresser

It's my first #FabFlippinContest piece! Makeover a drab dresser into a geometric piece of art!

*I received free products for this post and as always the views and opinions expressed are my own.

Flipping furniture is a hobby my husband and I both enjoy and it's something we can usually do together and, surprisingly enough, NOT want to rip each other's hair out! Somewhere in the last couple years though, our projects moved to my husband's 'shop' so what happens is, I tell him what I want and he does it. Yeah, I'm lucky that way, unless, um, I really like painting, prying things apart, glueing them back together, and changing out hardware.

SPEAKING OF HARDWARE...and before I go off on an entirely different topic.

A little over a month ago I found out about a new contest called The Fab Furniture Flippin' Contest. Can you guess what it's all about? Yep, flippin' furniture. I'm hoping you can see where I'm going with all this; I missed working with furniture and then along comes this contest inviting me back into the fold, urging me to get my hands dirty... so yeah, I signed up!

This is where the hardware comes in, this month's contest is being sponsored by D. Lawless Hardware and the theme is Icing on the Cake. Go check out their site, it's easy to see how the theme and sponsor fit together. They have tons of amazing hardware to look through and just when you think you've seen it all you'll click over to the matching set and a whole new world will open up!

Now, as much as I love color and bold designs, I'm a bit of a minimalist too. So I'm loving the geometric look that's making the rounds right now and I had it in mind when I upgraded this little three drawer dresser.

This is the before picture, wait until you see the after! #FabFlippinContest

I gave the base, and a couple drawers, a coat of black satin paint. The third drawer was painted white,just to be different. I knew I wanted to mix up design techniques so while I left one drawer black I taped up the other (yes it's electrical tape-I couldn't find the painter's) in a geometric pattern.

It's super easy to create a geometric pattern on any piece of furniture!

From there a picked three colors and got busy painting. There was no rythme or reason to which segments of the taped drawer I filled, I went with what looked right.

Furniture Makeover: Geometric Dresser

Go figure, the blue paint I'd picked was an old outdoor acrylic and it ATE OFF the original black paint! I'm considering it a happy accident though because I love the way the original finish looks mixed with the colored shapes.

Use tape to create geometric patterns on furniture, it's super easy!

Now for the icing on the cake, the hardware! We were given the opportunity to choose pieces from D. Lawless Hardware and I was completely overwhelmed. In the end I went with what, I'd like to believe, every DIY kinda gal would, the DIY knobs and pulls!

LOVE being able to make my own hardware thanks to D.Lawless Hardware's DIY knobs and pulls!

I have so many old buttons from my Grandmother and my thrifting adventures. I used E6000 to glue two black and two orange ones to the knob bases. As for the pulls, I left them naked. What can I say I liked them that way! I'm thinking about painting a design on them, or maybe adding a few Scrabble tiles but I'm not ready to commit to either idea just yet.

Make your own knobs and drawer pulls, courtesy D. Lawless Hardware, to compliment a geometric paint pattern on an otherwise drab dresser.

This month's contest co-hosts are Michelle at Dandelion Patina and Evey at Evey's Creations. Be sure to hop over to their sites and check out their projects and if you are interested in participating in future contests contact Stacy (info@anastasiavintage.com) or Evey at (info@eveyscreations.com).

Turn your drab dressers into fun geometric pieces of art!

Erin Sipes
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The Best Granola You Will Ever Have

Things have been crazy around our house this last week and it's been so long since I posted a recipe I thought I'd take a quick moment to share one my family has been gobbling up! 

There is so much goodness packed into this granola, plus it's delicious! via @mvemother

The past eight weeks I've been taking part in the April Kennedy Mind, Body, Spirit Challenge. I completely admit to slip ups now and then but exploring healthy food options, and dragging my family along with me, has been enlightening. Who knew we'd all hate whole wheat bagels as much as we did? Just kidding, not kidding. Those truly horrible bagels aside, we have embraced a number of new foods including some of the ingredients that went into making this granola.

If you're taking the challenge I'll warn you know it is only a neutral food but it does such a good job of satisfying your sweet tooth you'll be grateful to add it to your recipe repertoire.


  • 3 Tbsp of butter
  • 3 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/4 c honey OR molasses 
  • 1/4 c brown sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla paste OR liquid vanilla 
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 c old fashioned oats
  • 1 c puffed wheat cereal
  • 2 Tbsp flax seeds
  • 2 tsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 c pepitos OR a chopped nut of your choice
  • 1/2 c dried cranberries OR raisins


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Spray a shallow cookie sheet or baking dish with non-stick spray.

Mix salt, soda, oats, cereal, and seeds in a large bowl.

Melt butter, oil, vanilla, honey, and brown sugar. Once it is all completely melted add to dry ingredients making sure everything is coated well. Finally, add the cranberries and transfer all to the baking sheet. I flatten it all out until it is no more than 1/2" deep. Bake for 30 minutes.

When the granola comes out of the oven it will still be soft and gooey. Let it cool for at least 5-10 minutes before breaking it up into pieces.

TIP: I've been breaking it into spatula sized pieces and flipping them over on the baking sheet while they cool. You could use a cooling rack but you'll have a lot falling through the cracks.

Once it is cool to the touch, dig in! Be sure to store the granola in an air-tight container.

Don't be intimidated by the long list of ingredients, if I can find it in a rural Wal-Mart I'm sure you can too! This granola is so delicious and filled with good foods!
Erin Sipes
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