Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Night Night Teddy Bears

I am in the process of creating a fun website with crafts kids can make for deployed members of the military.  This hits especially close to home because my husband is currently deployed.  I found this craft and decided to try it for myself, and it's absolutely adorable.  These little bears would be great to send someone who's far away, whether it be a deployment or even a business trip.  They only stand a couple inches high, so they're perfect for small spaces or to just set on the night-stand for your loved ones to look at.  And best of all, these are so easy and cheap to make.

Here's what you need:

  • 1 1/2'' pom pom (body)
  • 1'' pom pom (head)
  • 2 5/8'' pom poms (legs)
  • 2 1/2'' pom poms (arms)
  • 2 3/8'' pom poms (ears)
  • black scrap of foam or felt
  • 2 wiggle eyes
  • tacky glue
Here's what to do:

Using tacky glue, attach the head to the body.  Glue on the legs and arms.  Next, glue on the ears and wiggle eyes.  Cut a small circle out of felt or foam (you can also use construction paper) for the nose and glue on. 

You can do these in any color pom pom, or a bear of all different colors.  They can be cute for party favors for a children's birthday party, or a little "just because" gift for that special someone. 

I just wanted to share this with you all and I hope you like it.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Feature Friday: Refreshed with Roses

I have spent years trying to get my husband to understand that sending a woman flowers JUST BECAUSE makes her feel so refreshed and appreciated. Well, it took him getting sent overseas for 7 months to get it, but better late than never!

Since fall is rapidly approaching, and as much as I love this season, I wanted to bring back the vibrant colors of spring for this Feature Friday. Like I said, my husband is currently overseas on a deployment, and about a week ago, he sent me roses just because he misses me. Awwwww. I know, I know, ::gag::. They couldn't have come at a better time though. I was having the worst day. I couldn't get the printers working (that's right, there was more than one), a cat stepped on the power converter and reset the computer in the middle of me working on my website, the dog was being extra-needy......shall I go on bitchin'?

Anyways, just when I was about to throw in the towel, along comes a knock at our front door, followed by a growl from my dog, and the UPS man running across the front yard. FLOWERS!!!!!! I yanked the string to pull the blinds up in my work room to let the sun beat in, put the beautiful flowers in a decorative glass vase, took a long, deep breath and all of a sudden, I felt refreshed. I felt like everything that happened prior to that moment just didn't matter anymore, and that what was more important was that my husband, who is 8,000 miles away, was thinking of me.
It's amazing how little moments like that can really put life in perspective. Something as small and insignificant as a dozen roses, end up being the most significant. Even from thousands of miles away, my husband can still make me smile. (Guess I shouldn't complain about the mound of laundry he left laying in the middle of our floor!)

Thank you so much for reading this week's Feature Friday. Next week, I'm going to be sharing something so near and dear to my heart, that you're not going to want to miss it: my late grandmother's Mint Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe. These are absolutely to die for....they're bananas! (Thank you Rachel Zoe for that phrase you should have copyrighted)

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

How-To Bath Salts: Victorian Rose

I started making homemade bath salts because I was looking for a unique and creative alternative to buying them. I made some for my Mom, and now she loves getting homemade bath and body products for mother's day, her birthday and Christmas. Bath salts are so easy to make and there are tons of different recipes. I wanted to share how I, personally, make bath salts. This particular recipe is for Victorian Rose bath salts. However, you can make bath salts using any essential oil that you find appealing. Here's what you'll need:

  • 1 cup Epsom salts

  • Bowl

  • Plastic spoon

  • Eye dropper

  • Glycerin (optional)

  • Victoria Rose essential oil

  • Red food coloring

Here's what to do:

Put 1 cup of Epsom salt (found at any store like Walmart or Rite Aide) in a bowl. Add about 4 drops of red food coloring. Mix well so that all the color blends into the salts. You should have a pink-ish color that looks something like the picture below.

Next, add a few drops of glycerin. This ingredient is optional. I like using glycerin in my bath recipes because it makes your skin really soft. You can find this at Rite Aide as well. Again, mix well.

The last touch is the essential oil. In this recipe, I'm using Victorian Rose, but you can use any essential oil that you like. I also like to use Pumpkin Spice, Lavendar, Vanilla and Sandalwood. I'm also infamous for mixing my essential oils too, which is a lot of fun. Ok, so add 3-5 drops of essential oils using an eye dropper and mix well.

At this point, wherever you're sitting, it should smell fabulous. Once I make my salts, I usually decorate a glass bottle I pick up from the dollar store with ribbon and some embellishments. I then add a tag with directions or what the essential oil is typically used for.

I hope you enjoyed this how-to. I would love to hear ideas on how you make bath salts and how you give them as gifts.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Feature Friday: Disney World

While on my hiatus from ADP, my husband and I went to Disney World. There is nothing more magical and inspiring than "It's a Small World" or "Journey to the Imagination". The colors, the sounds, the smells of Disney World are unlike anywhere I've ever been. And did I mention the dessert is as sweet as a two-year-old's tea party.

Oh hot diggity!

This just happens to be a delectable chocolate bunt-cake, with vanilla ice cream slathered on top, with chocolate syrup just seeping from the building's pores. The mountain rained jimmies and atop the masterpiece was a single piece of white chocolate that said, "celebrate today".

For anyone who's every been to Disney World, you know that their desserts are friggin' amazing! Desserts are my guilty pleasure (and I get that from Aunt Dottie, by the way). And I think I ate a dessert at every meal down in Disney World. This particular dessert was at Cinderella's Castle Royal Table. It was first time I had ever eaten there, and it was wonderful. If you can make reservations 3 months ahead of time, I highly recommend it.

On a side note, my husband screams like a girl on this ride.
(Sorry hunny)

And this is me eating my most favoritest dessert of all, the class mickey mouse ears....on a steek!

We love Disney World. My parents took my there all throughout my childhood, and I got to watch my husband enjoy it for the first time about 3 years ago. So we went there again last month and it was just as wonderful as it was the first 15 times I've been there. I would go back again in a heartbeat!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Sale, Sale, Sale!!

And we're back! Sorry to keep you waiting, folks. The author of this blog ( took a hiatus to spend some time with her hubby before his deployment to Iraq. But now that he's gone, and I'm "rone-reeeeee, so rone-reeee"...I can start writing posts again.

And just in time too! Aunt Dottie's Pantry has an awesome sale going on right now in preparation for the holiday season. It's our FALL SALE! Get 10% off any order of $30 or more. Did you hear me?? 10% OFF ANY ORDER OF $30 OR MORE!

You can so much bang for your buck at ADP. As you know, we now have recipe card boxes. They are so adorable! You saw the camo box in a previous post, but here it is again.

Here are a few other recipe card boxes that are posted on our website that are just to die for!

(Pssst! Tell your friends!)

Halloween is also just around the corner. That's right boys and gouls (don't even act like you all didn't know that was coming). I've designed some really cute Halloween recipe cards that are great for fun, "just because" gifts. Aunt Dottie's prices are so out-of-this-world reasonable, it's hard not to give cute gifts like these.

I know you're simply dying (tee hee) to get your hands on these cards. Don't forget that you can email me anytime at if you have any questions or special requests. Thanks for reading! Have a fangtastic day!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Watch Out Hallmark!

Look who's making greeting cards eh?......this girl! I've started using my photography to make greeting cards. I have so much fun with this because the possibilities are endless. Just for giggles, I made this card:

The photo taken for the front of the card is of a bridge crossing the Susquehanna River, while I'm standing on City Island. I converted it to black and white, and voila! You have a "come home safe card". It's easy to find "good luck" cards or "miss you" cards, but none that really pertain to the military. This would be a good general card for an acquaintance's son or daughter that you don't want to get too personal with.

Although I believe Valentine's Day is yet another way for corporate America to make money, I swallowed my jealousy....I mean pride, to design this card:
My husband sent me a dozen roses for my birthday because he's away at training, so I took a picture of just one rose, up close. The detail my camera picks up is amazing. Then I added the inside to make you gag.

And it's never too soon to start thinking about the holidays: the inlaws, stringing up the lights, getting trampled by 5am wait, in my world, make that 12pm shoppers. What the heck is 5am?

I just love Christmas. These cards are going to be available on our website soon. We are going to have 4 1/4'' x 5 1/2'' note cards (which look like the quarter fold cards you can make on your computer) and general greeting size cards 5''x7''. My goal is to make cards for a bunch of categories, including birthday, inspirational, thank you, just because, love, friendship, get well, etc. Then I'll put them all out at once. I'm plugging away so make sure to check out our website periodically to see if they're up.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Feature Friday: Da Military

Hokay, so, I'm a Marine Corps wife. My husband is a logistics embarkation specialist stationed out of Wyoming, PA. Currently, however, he is active duty at Cherry Point, NC where he is training for his deployment. Now that I have 7 months and no Marine to slobber over, I needed something to fill my time (besides the business, of course! Tee Hee) So I did a search for military-themed recipe cards and boxes....type, type, type, click......hello....Google, where's all the results? Yahoo? Jeeves?!.......
Scary enough, there are none. Wipe the sweat kitty, I'm on top of it. So here's to you military wives (we rock! ::hair flip::) Here are cards that truly represent you.

These cards are available on our website,, and our ebay store, keyword: Aunt Dottie's Pantry. And take a look at this recipe box I painted!!

I am extremely happy with how this turned out. Originally, I was going to make it for the Army wives, but after getting a raft of you-know-what from my husband, I decided to make it a general camo box so anyone could buy it. (Don't worry though wives, I'll be doing branch-specific ones soon....when he's not looking) It is a wood recipe box with gold hinges. I drew all the camo on by hand, then painted it. I did the two pillars on the front of the box in gold, the lid is dark green and black with gold stars on the top. The inside of the box is painted a dark green. The entire box, both outside and inside is sprayed with a protective, matte coat.

All of the recipe boxes that I paint are one of a kind, meaning that I will never paint the same one twice. They are hand-painted crafts, also meaning that there can be imperfections in the paint or the wood. I will guarantee though, that every box is made with the utmost love and if I'm not happy with a box myself, I redo it.

Thanks for checking out Feature Friday. Check back often because I have tons of stuff to talk about (and my supervisor is VERY strict about my work ethic. Remember?)

(He sleeps with one eye open)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Feature Friday: Pet-Themed Recipe Cards

Drum roll,'s FEATURE FRIDAY! I know what you're thinking, that I'm a genius and this is such an original idea. No need to applaud. (If you haven't noticed by now, I'm extremely sarcastic).

Everyone, including all of us at Aunt Dottie's Pantry, love pets. I've known people, myself included, who would feed their pets before they have a meal themselves. So we designed some cards to reflect how much we love our animals.

This is personally, one of my favorite breeds of dog. I used to be a veterinary technician, and I can say that I've never met a vicious pug, and even if I did, I'd still love them, because that would be hilarious. They always have so much personality and charisma and I love that they walk around, with their little curly tails up in the air, acting clueless. They melt my heart every time I see them. I'm not going to sit here and act like I love beagles, because they're not my favorite. Not my least favorite, but not in my top 10. I think they're adorable, but bless those of you that can put up with them. They are so dense. They'll walk out on your front doorstep, and be lost. And their nails on a chalkboard. Nevertheless, we know there are thousands of beagle lovers out there and I will say that they deserve homes too (side note: make adoption your first option; when you adopt an animal, you save 2 lives, the one you take home and the one you made room for).

So that's our Feature Friday. We have tons of other breeds on our website and ebay store, so check it out to see if your pet is listed. And if not, contact us and we'll see if we can't make it happen.
And now that I praised pugs and bashed beagles, I'll let you see my ugly-on-the-outside, yet beautiful-on-the-inside dog, Gunnar. He's a pit bull mix, about a year old. I used to work at an animal shelter, and one day I went into work and all my co-workers
were making a big fuss over this dog in the kennel. I went back, and could barely see him because he was in the last kennel against the wall where light doesn't get in very well, and his slide was closed. I looked in and saw these big brown eyes look up at me. As ohky as it sounds, it was love at first sight. I come to find out that he came in as a stray and based on his injuries, suspected to have been hit by a car. He broke both his hips and on top of that, had whipworms and giardia (both parasitic, intestinal issues). They were preparing him for surgery to put plates in, but decided that since he was walking on this back legs, they didn't want to be so invasive, but recommended 6 weeks of bedrest and he had to be carried if there was tile or other smooth surfaces he could slip on, or stairs. My first mistake was looking at him; my second was sitting in his kennel with him. Boy did he turn on the charm. I wanted to foster him, but an injured pit bull that we didn't know where he came from?? I him-hauled around for a day or so, but something in my heart told me to take him home. It turns out he's a wonderful dog. This pitbull doesn't have a mean bone in his body. He has changed the minds of alot of people I know that had that bad stigma brewing about pits. And his timing couldn't have been better, because my husband was getting deployed, so he needed me about as much as I needed him. My Dad said one time that Gunnar getting hit by a car was the worst thing to have ever happened to him, but also the best, because he now has a great home and we love him to pieces.
So there's my story. I love hearing about other people's pets too, so if you're feeling froggy, email me with a story of your pet...maybe even some photos. I always love to see pampered pets.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Aunt Dottie's Pantry Goes to the Blogs

First, let me say welcome to our new blog page. We have been looking for ways to connect with our customers for quite some time, and we are very excited to be able to share our ideas and products in an informal way. Aunt Dottie's Pantry is a way for my Mom and I to prove to our husbands that we don't just set Thanksgiving turkeys on fire and forget to put baking powder in a batch of cookies and then wonder why they come out flat as pancakes.......ummm....where was I? Oh yes, we can design recipe cards, address labels, gift tags (all personalized for FREE at your heart's content), gift baskets and hand-painted recipe card boxes. Some of our recipe card designs include flowers, weddings, christmas, easter, home cookin', patriotic, mother's day and so much more.

We have found that recipe cards are a great way to give a unique gift to friends and family. And if the person you're giving them to doesn't like to cook, just write a few of your own recipes on the cards to help them along. There is something for everybody on our website and we are always looking for new designs and ways to include unique interests to our products, like our Red Hat collection.
We are very compassionate for TKD's (Tragic Kitchen Disasters). We've all had them, and we hope that our fun and upbeat products will put a smile on your face while you're extinguishing that

turkey you got up at 5am to prepare.