HAVE BROOM WILL TRAVEL

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0913141830b

Halloween will soon be upon us. Ghouls, zombies and witches will be bringing the fear to my neighborhood. That is if I get everything done in time.

A few of my projects this year are complete. Many others are in the works. Two of the ones complete are simple yet are great props to include in a porch display.

A simple rustic witch broom and a tall spooky witch hat. Witch shoes are in the works but they are not cooperating with me at this time.

Today I will share with you how to make the broom.

The broom was quick and easy. I have an oak tree, I call him The Might Oak. Yes I do talk to my tree, he’s a nice guy. Sadly during every storm he loses a few limbs. Some small and others big enough to use as a weapon in a zombie apocalypse.

I began this project by gathering a sturdy limb big enough to serve has the broom handle. After finding the perfect one I began to gather up smaller limbs. Some sturdy others thin and flimsy.

Before going any further I took some twine. It was a light beige. Not liking the new clean twine look I decided to age some. Which is a simple process. Get some tea bags throw them and the twine in a pot of water, bring to a boil. Take off burner and let sit awhile. Easy as pumpkin pie.

a little potion

a little potion

While the tea is working its magic grab some duct tape. It’s time to make a broom!

the magical items being guarded by my new puppy

the magical items being guarded by my new puppy

Take one of the small limbs, place it toward the bottom of the broom handle. take the duct tape and use it to attach the smaller limb.

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Keep wrapping the tape around the handle adding more limbs as you go. Stop when you are satisfied with the look of your broom.

Ready for the twine

Ready for the twine

Then I took the twine out of the pot of tea water. You can let the twine dry to use wet. I find it works better and you get a tighter wrap with it wet. Knot it at the top of the taped area. Now just start wrapping until you reach the end of the duct taped area. Tie off.

Done. Now wait for a full moon then take your broom for a spin!

finished hat 3

 

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Fiery Hot Lips: DIY Cinnamon Lip Balm

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Fire balm

I love me some cinnamon. I am still enjoying the cinnamon toothpicks I made. I was gathering supplies to make a small batch of lip balm and was thinking about those cinnamon toothpicks. Suddenly an idea hit me, thankfully not hard, but it did hit me. The idea? Cinnamon lip balm. I read several pins on making lip balm and from them I came up with the recipe down below.

Let me tell you something about cinnamon lip balm…it is not for the faint of heart.

Lip Balm of Fire:

Ingredients:
4 tsp. of beeswax pellets
1 ½ tsp. of Shea butter
2 tsp. sweet almond oil
1 tsp. Argan oil
3-6 drops cinnamon oil
A tiny chunk of lipstick if you want tinted balm
A tiny container for your balm

In a pot add a few inches of water, turn burner on low. Give the water a few minutes to heat up. Using either a glass jar or some other container that can take the heat, place the jar in the warm water. Into your jar add the beeswax, Shea butter, Sweet Almond oil and Argan Oil.
Let everything melt, stirring with a wooden spoon. Once melted add your lipstick chunk if you are tinting. If not remove from heat, add your cinnamon, stir then pour into your storage container.

Beeswax

Beeswax


Wax and oils melted together.

Wax and oils melted together.

This is my first time dealing with beeswax. What I learned from this first time is that the stuff wants to set up FAST. So have your storage container handy so you can pour quickly.

I should have added a bigger chunk of lipstick. I had a bronze color which using just a little made my balm look dirty. I meant to pour just three drops of cinnamon oil but a tad more came out of the bottle. I let my balm set, which didn’t take long. It smelled like cinnamon heaven. I put it on my lips and it burnt like hell. My lips were on FIRE. Grabbing a rag I wiped what I could of the balm off my lips. Still the fire was raging. I made a mad dash to my freezer, grabbed a cube of ice and tried to cool down my burning lips. It took a few minutes but my lips cooled down. On a positive note my lips were nice and soft. Was it from the oils in the balm or did the dry rough skin burn off? I don’t know and I’m not going to try it again. Hell who am I kidding? It’s cinnamon, of course I’m going to try it again.

This was a very Pinteresting and painful adventure. Do you have a favorite lip balm recipe? Please share.

Setting up

Setting up

Something Wicked This Way Bakes

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cut cake close up

It is only April but I couldn’t wait to try a Halloween version of this cake. As you recall I made this cake a few posts back with spring colors. When I say I couldn’t wait to make this cake what I meant was: I made this cake and took it to the family Easter dinner. At this point my family just took me bringing a Halloween cake to Easter in stride. It took many years but I think they have finally accepted Halloween is my lifestyle not a holiday. If they did not like the cake theme my family kept that to themselves. They were impressed with the swirled color effect. They said the cake was tasty also.

So here is the instructions to make this cake. Once you learn the process you can customize the colors for any holiday or party theme.

Ingredients:

1 white cake mix
3 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 ¼ cup water
1 tsp. vanilla extract (optional)
Pam to spray the pan
Food coloring or icing coloring gel
Any items you want to decorate with (I used gummy mummy)
1 can white frosting

Use a Bundt pan.

Preheat your oven to the temperature on the box directions. Spray/grease your Bundt pan.
If you read the box directions for a white cake mix it calls for 3 egg whites. That’s because you don’t want to yolk to mess up your white cake. Since we are going to color the batter it is okay to use 3 whole eggs.

Add the items listed on the cake box along with vanilla extract to a large bowl. Mix your cake according to box directions. After it is mixed thoroughly, divide the batter between three bowls. I find it works out better if you don’t get the amounts totally even.
So now you have 3 bowls of white cake mix, now get your food coloring. I use the gel colors, I find they work better. One color to each bowl. Orange, green and purple. Halloween colors. Mix, mix and mix some more. Get rid of all that white.

color gel

color gel

Divide batter into 3 bowls. Mix in colors. Layer in pan

Divide batter into 3 bowls. Mix in colors. Layer in pan

Take the bowl with the most batter and pour in pan first. Follow with the bowl with next most amount. Finish with the bowl that has the least. You don’t want to cover each color completely. I have a picture so you can see what I’m talking about.

Stick that pan in the oven and let the cake voodoo happen.
Now the cake is baked. Let it cool before you turn it out of the pan.

The spring color cake I made the other week, I divided the icing into three bowls and colored the icing with the same colors I used in the batter. This time I decided to go with red to look like dripping blood.

Put the icing in a bowl. Heat in microwave 25 seconds. You want the icing running so you can drizzle over cake. You may have to heat it a few more seconds if the icing is still thick after 25 seconds. BUT before you decide it needs to heat more give it a good stir, that maybe all it needs. Once you have it runny enough to drizzle add your color and mix away. Once mixed good drizzle that bloody concoction like you want that cake to resemble a crime scene.

without gunny mummy

without gunmy mummy

Let the icing cool then add your decorations.

Done! Now sit back and enjoy your evil creation.

bloody cake 2

uhhh 5

Here is the link to where I learned this technique. Actually it’s the pin that will gateway you to the site.
Here is the post where I made this cake with spring colors.

Something Wicked This Way Bakes

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cut cake close up

It is only April but I couldn’t wait to try a Halloween version of this cake. As you recall I made this cake a few posts back with spring colors. When I say I couldn’t wait to make this cake what I meant was: I made this cake and took it to the family Easter dinner. At this point my family just took me bringing a Halloween cake to Easter in stride. It took many years but I think they have finally accepted Halloween is my lifestyle not a holiday. If they did not like the cake theme my family kept that to themselves. They were impressed with the swirled color effect. They said the cake was tasty also.

So here is the instructions to make this cake. Once you learn the process you can customize the colors for any holiday or party theme.

Ingredients:

1 white cake mix
3 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 ¼ cup water
1 tsp. vanilla extract (optional)
Pam to spray the pan
Food coloring or icing coloring gel
Any items you want to decorate with (I used gummy mummy)
1 can white frosting

Use a Bundt pan.

Preheat your oven to the temperature on the box directions. Spray/grease your Bundt pan.
If you read the box directions for a white cake mix it calls for 3 egg whites. That’s because you don’t want to yolk to mess up your white cake. Since we are going to color the batter it is okay to use 3 whole eggs.

Add the items listed on the cake box along with vanilla extract to a large bowl. Mix your cake according to box directions. After it is mixed thoroughly, divide the batter between three bowls. I find it works out better if you don’t get the amounts totally even.
So now you have 3 bowls of white cake mix, now get your food coloring. I use the gel colors, I find they work better. One color to each bowl. Orange, green and purple. Halloween colors. Mix, mix and mix some more. Get rid of all that white.

color gel

color gel

Divide batter into 3 bowls. Mix in colors. Layer in pan

Divide batter into 3 bowls. Mix in colors. Layer in pan

Take the bowl with the most batter and pour in pan first. Follow with the bowl with next most amount. Finish with the bowl that has the least. You don’t want to cover each color completely. I have a picture so you can see what I’m talking about.

Stick that pan in the oven and let the cake voodoo happen.
Now the cake is baked. Let it cool before you turn it out of the pan.

The spring color cake I made the other week, I divided the icing into three bowls and colored the icing with the same colors I used in the batter. This time I decided to go with red to look like dripping blood.

Put the icing in a bowl. Heat in microwave 25 seconds. You want the icing running so you can drizzle over cake. You may have to heat it a few more seconds if the icing is still thick after 25 seconds. BUT before you decide it needs to heat more give it a good stir, that maybe all it needs. Once you have it runny enough to drizzle add your color and mix away. Once mixed good drizzle that bloody concoction like you want that cake to resemble a crime scene.

without gunny mummy

without gunmy mummy

Let the icing cool then add your decorations.

Done! Now sit back and enjoy your evil creation.

bloody cake 2

uhhh 5

Here is the link to where I learned this technique. Actually it’s the pin that will gateway you to the site.
Here is the post where I made this cake with spring colors.

Birthday Cake and Evil Ideas

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5

Landyn, a good friend and co-worker had a birthday coming up. Last year I made her a layered multi-colored cake for her twenty-first birthday. I just couldn’t make her a plain old cake after last year. This year I had to top the multi-colored cake.

So I took to Pinterest. Oh the pins I scrolled through. So many pins yet no cake screamed ‘Landyn’. I know I spent over an hour looking for the perfect cake. I left Pinterest, I hoped maybe a break would help. I would make dinner for the husband and myself, maybe read a little, catch up with some family on FB. Then I would venture back to the land of cake pins.

The birthday cake gods must have taken pity on my plight. I signed onto FB and there it was THE CAKE. My cousin found a cake on Pinterest, shared it on FB and tagged me in it. It was another multi-colored cake but so damn amazing looking. I immediately went and pinned that cake.

I love this cake, you can do so many different themes with it. My mind was going crazy with ideas, one idea stuck with me. A dark evil idea. Finally I had to reign in the brain so I could focus on the task at hand.

I went with the colors used in the Pin. They were pink/purple/yellow. Easter and spring colors. Landyn’s birthday was so close to Easter I figured those would be good colors to go with.
I read the instructions. I knew this was going to be easy as pie or as we now say at the crypt, easy as heart shaped pancakes.

One thing that was used for the cake I did not have was a Bundt pan. I went and borrowed one from one of my Aunties. This was an old sad well used pan. The inside coating was flaking off. My aunt mentioned she used the old one all the time, she was looking for a new one, but hadn’t been able to find one that was budget friendly yet.

Well I took that pan home. I looked at it and decided I was not going to let my aunt keep using a pan that the coating was coming off of. She is all the time doing nice things for others I decided it was time to do something nice for her. I went to the store, again the cake gods did me right. I found her and myself really good quality pans at a fantastic price.

So now I had the pan. I gathered all the ingredients and began my newest cake quest.

Spring Color Birthday Cake
Ingredients:
1 white cake mix
3 eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 ¼ cup water
Pam to spray the pan
Food coloring or icing coloring gel

Preheat your oven to the temperature on the box directions. Spray/grease your pan.
If you read the box directions for a white cake mix it calls for 3 egg whites. That’s because you don’t want to yolk to mess up your white cake. Since we are going to color the batter it is okay to use 3 whole eggs.

Mix you cake according to box directions. After it is mixed thoroughly, divide the batter between three bowls. I find it works out better if you don’t get the amounts totally even.
So now you have 3 bowls of white cake mix, now get your food coloring. I use the gel colors I find they work better. One color to each bowl. Mix, mix and mix some more. Get rid of all that white.

Take the bowl with the most batter and pour in pan first. Follow with the bowl with next most amount. Finish with the bowl that has the least. You don’t want to cover each color completely. I have a picture so you can see what I’m talking about.

layers of color

Stick that pan in the oven and let the magic happen. Oh how I stressed from this moment on. I worried that my cake would not turn out anything like the pin. I envisioned Landyn cutting into her cake and finding a disaster inside. I would not know the outcome until first break (10 a.m.) the next day.
Now the cake is baked. Let it cool before you turn it out of the pan.

baked

Here is what I like about the pin I followed. You don’t have to mix up any frosting. You just use a canned frosting. White of course. Divide it up between 3 bowls. Take you first bowl of frosting and heat in up in the microwave for 20 to 25 seconds. You want it runny so you can drizzle over cake. Once it’s runny time to color it. Just like you colored the cake batter. Mix and mix it good. Now spoon it over your cake. Do the other 2 bowls of frosting the same way.

Done!

6

I did not heat my frosting for 20 seconds. I heated it 12. Mistake. The icing was too thick to drizzle like I wanted it. I have done another cake since and heating the frosting 20 to 25 seconds works better.

So journey through time to the next day. It’s break time. Landyn has knife in hand. She cuts the cake. SUCCESS! I was so happy that if I was the hugging type I would have hugged everyone in that break room. The cake looked great and tasted pretty darn good too. (yes I’m tooting my own horn)

Oh sweet success

Oh sweet success

This is an easy way to bake a cake that will make you look like a rock star! It may have taken 15 minutes to mix the batter, divide it, color it and get it in the oven. So little effort with such a big pay off.

I have so many ideas for Halloween cakes using this recipe. Gloriously evil dark ideas. Oh the fun I shall have. Don’t be surprised if you see another post with this recipe in a few weeks or even days. It will be Halloween themed of course!

Here is the pin. The multi-colored Bundt cake is beautiful. Go check it out.

cut 2cut 3

A Pinch of Magic

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Bibbity Bobbity Boo

Bibbity Bobbity Boo

I have been asked, “Gotha, why is your blog titled, The Pinteresting Life of Gotha Stewart?”, well the answer is simple. When I decided to start this blog I told my husband I wanted to call it “Bitches Be Pinning”. He immediately replied, “I will divorce you if you do.”
Since I have already invested eighteen years of my life with this man and he is the one who kills the spiders that get inside the house. I decided to come up with a different blog name. My friends are all the time telling me, if the evil world had a Martha Stewart it would be you. That is the direction my mind went to find another blog title, so later that day ‘The Pinteresting Life of Gotha Stewart’ was born.

That being said, today’s post is not even about a pin I saw on Pinterest, (oh the horror). This is a pin I, myself pinned. It was just a photo of the finished project that I uploaded to Pinterest. Since several people have asked me how I made it, I decided to share the how-to.

We have this giant oak tree in out back yard, I call him the mighty oak. Yes I do talk to him. If I don’t he throws acorns on me as I try to relax and read in his shade. Mighty oak tends to lose limbs during bad thunderstorms. One day while picking up limbs after an extremely bad storm I picked up this one good size stick. The first thing that entered my mind was, Gandalf from LOTR. I turned to the husband, shouted, “You shall not pass!” then struck the earth with the bottom of the stick. The husband looked at me, shook his head and said, “to bad it’s not a broom, you could fly off.” Oh he thinks he is funny. He’s not.

The mind started working. I saw this stick transformed to a magical staff any sorcerer or sorceress would be proud of.


 

How-to Magical Staff

What you need:
An awesome stick from an acorn throwing tree. (any good size fallen limb would work)
Wood burning tool
Sandpaper
Screwdriver or something to scrape away bark
Sealant
Imagination
Gemstones (optional)
Jewelry/craft glue (if using gemstones)
Small jewelry charms (optional)
Cooking twine (for charms and gemstone)
Nail polish or marker (if using gemstones)
Sharpie
Small can of light wood stain
Eye of newt (not really)
Tongue of goat (not really)
A sarcastic husband who thinks you are incapable of using a wood burning tool (optional)

I already had all the items on hand. Except eye of newt and tongue of goat. I began working naked under the light of a full moon, not really, it was full sun and I was fully clothed. Since we just experienced a bad storm the night before I had to lay the stick in the sun to dry. This took a few days. I did almost all the work on this project outside, due to messiness and chemicals used.

After drying I used a flat head screw driver to scrape off the bark. My plan way to scrape all the bark off, cut off any lumpy bumpy places and smooth the whole thing down. I decided against that after realizing all those things were what gave the stick character. I did remove the bark and sandpaper from places where I was going to burn symbols. This took a week, mainly because I was working a lot of hours at the time and was hardly home. I must warn you, there could be tiny bugs coming out of the stick as you work. The stick at one time was a living limb that housed living things. Nope, not creepy at all.

After the scraping and sanding was complete I got down my trusty book, “The Happy Homemakers Guide to Sorcery and Pot-Luck Potion Swaps.” Not a real book but what an awesome Gotha Stewart prop that would make. I did use books and go online looking up magical symbols to use. It’s not like anyone has ever accidentally conjured up a demon that way. Right? (See Buffy, season four episode four, “Fear, Itself”. To see how things can go wrong using symbols from books. Last scene in episode is great.)
With the sharpie I drew the symbols I wanted on the stick. Using the wood burning tool I burnt those symbols into the stick. Some symbols I had to burn a few times to get them deep and dark enough to be seen. FYI this is not a project for children, unless they are enrolled in Hogwarts, even then they would still need adult supervision on this project.
Once the symbols are burnt you can now stain the staff. At this point I feel it should no longer be called a stick. I used a paper towel to apply the stain, I only stained a few places. I wanted the staff to have a used well worn look and feel.
Once you have the staff looking how you want it. Now get out your can of spray sealant and spray away. I did several coats. Let each coat dry completely before applying the next.

Now is time for gemstones. A few years ago the husband and I took a day trip to the mountains. We stopped at a roadside gem mining stand. You buy a bucket of rocks, sit at a flume with running water, use container with a mesh like bottom and proceed to find gemstones. We ended up with a huge bag of gemstones.
I played around with placing gemstones in the ‘fork’ of the staff until I found the perfect one. I then used craft glue (E-6000) to glue it in place. This stuff has a strong smell. Make sure you are outside or in a well ventilated area. I then glued a pointed stone to the tip of one of the ‘prongs’. That area was not the most secure place and the glue did not have much area to grab onto. So I applied glue the bottom end of the stone and the first inch of the stick then I wrapped cooking twine where the glue was applied. Once completely wrapped to my liking I started dabbing more glue on the outer part of the twine. Once dried I was not happy with the look of the twine, it was orange and black striped. I had this dark purple nail polish that was left in my car. The heat had thickened it up to the point I could not use it as fingernail polish. I coated the twine in it. To finish it up I tied a bundle of charms to the staff. I went overboard with the charms. I will probably take most of them off and just settle on three to leave dangling. I will also use a different color twine to tie them with, maybe a solid color.
staff close up

So there it is. The making of a magical staff. It is now ready to use as a magical prop, or to dazzle your friends at conventions or banish a demon hiding under a dwarfed mined mountain.

A little over five foot tall

A little over five foot tall

I wish I had taken photos of the whole process. As I sit here typing this the wind is picking up outside, maybe a storm is blowing in. If the Mighty Oak loses another awesome limb maybe I will make another magical staff and take pictures of the process this time.

I hope this has inspired the magical person inside you to make you own staff if so, please share your experience and photos with me.

Thanks for visiting now off you go, there’s pins out there in need of pinning!

Tame Your Evil Side, Feed it Cookies

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Crinkle cookies

Crinkle cookies

Crinkle Cake Mix Cookies. OH YES! This is more than a recipe, it’s a technique that once you learn the cookie possibilities are endless. Endless really? No. But there will be a lot of cookie possibilities.

The air was cold, the wind had a bitter bite to it. Good cheer was abundant. Decorated trees peeked out of frosty windows. Yes it was that time. Christmas. I always plan a raid on those Who’s down the mountain this time of year. I will celebrate Christmas but I’m not a big fan of it. Why you ask? Well I am full of evil and darkness but that’s not the reason I’m not a Christmas fan. To some people (I’m one of them) the holiday is just a reminder of what has been lost. The hubby and I lost a child some years ago. We tend to stay home more during the holiday and only limit our outings to work and family gatherings. We avoid the public as much as possible, it is too hard, even after all these years, to be out and around people during the holiday season. It seems our sadness and heartache intensifies that time of year.
Why am I sharing this sad story? Not for pity. I want people to know when a co-worker, neighbor or even a stranger ‘Bah humbugs’ Christmas it’s not because they are bad it’s because it is just to painful. So please keep that in mind next holiday season. Don’t be angry or pity them just understand for some of us we don’t celebrate Christmas we just try to survive it.

Okay now that I’ve bummed out myself and maybe even you let’s cheer up by baking some crinkle cookies! Since I’m home most of the holiday season I spend time on Pinterest and a whole lot of time baking. It’s nice to have a full belly of some fresh baked goodness when you are going on all those Whoville raids.

Me and my Grinchy self was snooping around Pinterest looking for some cookie recipes I could make to share at a family gathering. What grabs my who hash hoarding soul’s attention? GRINCH CRINKLE COOKIES! I repeat: Grinch. Crinkle. Cookies.

Here is the direct link to the blog by Cookin’ Cowgirl and her “How the Grinch Crinkled Christmas” cookies. If you visit her site, stay awhile and wandering around. She has some great recipes. I mostly go by her recipe but I have changed it slightly. You may prefer her recipe so hit that link that will transport you to the Cookin‘ Cowgirl (after you scroll down past this first recipe and check out my devils food crinkle cookie recipe).

The cookies have the word Grinch in them because the cookies are green not because it’s made from real Grinches. I’m sure that’s a relief to know!

Green Cake Mix Crinkle Cookies

1 white cake mix.
6 tbsp melted butter.
1 tbsp vanilla extract.
2 eggs.
Green food color.
Powdered sugar.
Mix cake mix, butter and eggs together.
Add food color, mix well.
At this point I put my dough into freezer for several minutes to firm up. It works better for me that way.
Remove from freezer. Roll a spoonful dough into powdered sugar. Once covered roll into ball. Bake at 375 degrees 8 to 9 minutes.
Transfer from cookie sheet to wax paper to cool.grinch2

Below is the cookies I ended up making for my family get together.

Devils Food Crinkle Cake Cookies
1 box devils food cake mix.
2 eggs.
1/2 cup vegetable oil.
2 tbsp coffee.
Mix by hand.
Set in freezer 30 minutes(makes it easier to roll).
Roll in powdered sugar. I use 2 spoons to cover dough in powdered sugar before rolling them into balls. Bake in a preheated 350 degree over for 8 minutes. Transfer to wax paper to cool.
*Line cookie pan with parchment paper. Makes clean up easier. I store the cookies in a plastic container, each layer is covered in wax paper to keep each layer of cookies from touching. These cookies are delicate and will stick to each other.

These cookies disappeared like diamonds at a kleptomaniac convention. I set them on the dessert counter at my grandmothers, went to car to grab the other things I cooked, walked back to the dessert counter and bam! No more cookies. They were gobbled up that fast. Everyone was expressing their disappointment that I hadn’t brought more.

gccc2

So one recipe used melted butter the other oil. You can adapt either recipe to any cake mix. Easy as heart shaped pancakes. (if you’ve read my other postings you totally get that)