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Archive for June, 2010

Butter Cookie Christmas Cutouts Recipe

Posted in Christmas
June 26, 2010 by Lisa

Here’s a great recipe for making cutout Christmas cookies this holiday season.

1 cup of butter
1 1/2 cups of sifted powdered sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon of vanilla
2 1/2 cups of sifted flour
1 teaspoon of cream of tartar
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1/4 teaspoon of salt

Cream butter, add sugar gradually and cream until fluffy. Add unbeaten egg and vanilla; beat well. Sift together dry ingredients; blend into cream mixture. Chill dough about an hour. Roll on well floured pastry board to 1/4 inch thickness. Cut with floured cutter. Bake on an unbuttered cookie sheet for 6 minutes at 325 degrees. Yield: 6
dozen cookies.

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Cool Christmas Cards: Have Fun With Your Mail This Holiday

Posted in Christmas
June 24, 2010 by Lisa

unusual christmas cardsEach year, Americans send millions of cards during the holiday season, and most of them are traditional folded greetings or flat photo cards with faces of smiling families. Want to break out of the mold this year? Here are some cool Christmas cards that pop up, play music, fold out, simply look a little different, or can even double as Christmas tree ornaments or Christmas letters.

PhotoWorks has some of the most unusual Christmas cards available online, including a selection of tri-fold cards, die-cut cards, round cards and cards that can double as a quick Christmas letter or even a tree ornament. Shown here are images of some of these interesting designs. For instance, you can buy a tri-fold card with a place for you to write a short Christmas letter inside (right), a card that allows you to insert three photos into the ornament images on the front and then write a short blurb about each photo inside the card (below left), or one that has a die-cut sleigh design on the cover and opens up to reveal your photo inside (below right). They also have some great designs not shown here, such as the “really big” postcard that measures almost 9.5 inches across and has room for a message on the back, or the square “Festival of Lights” card that can be folded to stand up.

christmas calendar cardChristmas Calendar Photo Cards
Here’s another cool Christmas card – it’s a card and a calendar! While most cards are likely to end up in the trash after the holidays, this handy tri-fold card can be kept and used all year long. It’s available in two colors and can be personalized at Studio Style .

Forget everything you thought you knew about the shape of Christmas cards. These 4.75-inch round Christmas cards are made of three circles bound together with a grommet, so you can hang them from a tree as ornaments. Personalize your card with your own photo or artwork and message, and it will surely stand out as one of the most unusual Christmas cards your friends and family receive this year.

Christmas Card Ornament
Here’s another unusual Christmas card from PhotoWorks. This one is a card AND an ornament. The photo on the cover of this 5 x 7 card has a perforated edge, so your card recipients can punch out the design and hang it on their tree. It’s great for family photos or kids’ artwork! Grandparents will love it. And there’s enough room on the inside to write a short holiday letter.

An Edible Christmas Card
edible unusual christmas cardHere’s a truly unusual holiday “card” – or perhaps “holiday greeting” would be more appropriate, as this isn’t really a card in the traditional sense at all. It’s a giant personalized rice krispie treat. Yes, an edible Christmas card! You won’t have to feel guilty about cutting down trees to send this card, and your recipients won’t need to recycle this greeting. They can simply eat it!

Gourmet Cookie Bouquets.com says, “This oversized Krispie sheet measures 12.5″ x 16″ and is covered in sweet white chocolate. Then we imprint the front with edible ink using any image you choose! It’s an edible way to send your greetings for Christmas, birthdays, or any other celebratory event!”

Don’t like Rice Krispies? Then check out the 2-lb. personalized holiday greeting chocolate bar at Savannah’s Candy Kitchen.

Musical Christmas Cards
Amazon carries this assortment of 10 musical Christmas cards. It contains assorted designs and songs such as “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” by Burl Ives, “Jingle Bell Rock” by Bobby Helms, “Deck the Halls” by Choral Group, “Frosty the Snowman” by Ella Fitzgerald and others.

cool christmas cards - cartoon charactersCartoon Character Christmas Cards
Turn yourself and your family members (even your pets!) into cartoon characters! These cool Christmas cards from Personalization Mall feature any greeting with your family name featured across the top of the card, along with everyone’s first name personalized below each character. Choose grandparent, adult, youth, or baby figures, male or female, light or dark complexions, even pets!

Cards can be personalized with one of 19 different messages or you can select your own Christmas card wording, and the verse and personalization can be printed in your choice of ink colors and font styles. Click an image to get a larger view and see more details.

Any of these cool Christmas cards can break you out of the traditional rectangular card mold. So have fun this season and try something new!

Adapted from Unusual Christmas Cards and Cool Christmas Cards on Squidoo.

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History of Christmas Holly

Posted in Christmas
June 17, 2010 by Lisa

Christmas-blank card card

“Deck the halls with boughs of holly
Fa la la la la la la la la”

In many Western cultures, holly is a traditional Christmas decoration, used especially in wreaths. Many of the hollies are highly decorative, and it’s believed that it and the green ivy that is usually used alongside it in decorating is why the colors red and green have come to be representative of Christmas. But not many people can trace the history of this colorful plant.

The Druids are believed to have been the first ones to make holly a special plant. They viewed it as a sacred plant, designed to keep the earth beautiful even in the harshest of conditions. When they went into the forest to watch priests cutting mistletoe, another plant they considered sacred, they wore sprigs of holly in their hair.

Romans gave holly wreaths as gifts and decorated images of Saturn with holly during their Saturnalia festival. Centuries later, while other Romans continued their pagan worship, Christians were celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. To avoid persecution from the Romans, however, they decked their homes with Saturnalia holly. As Christian numbers increased and their customs prevailed, holly lost its pagan association and instead became a symbol of Christmas.

A variety of new traditions then sprang up around holly. In West England, it is said sprigs of holly around a young girl’s bed on Christmas Eve will keep away goblins. In Germany, a piece of holly that has been used in church decorations is regarded as a charm against lightning. In England, British farmers put sprigs of holly on their beehives in celebration of bees that hummed in honor of the Christ Child at his birth.

Today families around the world still deck their halls with boughs of holly during the holiday season.

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Memorable Christmas Pictures With A Digital Camera

Posted in Christmas
June 13, 2010 by Lisa

christmas pictures: nikon coolpixBy Soren Breiting

Christmas is a time for strong sentiments, gatherings of family and friends, good food and nice traditions. Learn to make the best out of this memorable time in pictures for old and young.

Rather simple point-and-shoot cameras have a great potential for family pictures during Christmas and they can also produce most other kinds of pictures during this important annual event. Small digital cameras aren’t that intrusive as big professional cameras.

Here, I offer some basic photo tips and some more advanced photo tricks. If you follow just a few of them you will probably make much more memorable Christmas pictures during the Christmas days – and may be even before Christmas day.

Be prepared for photography

Keep your digital camera in reach during all Christmas. Make sure your battery is fully recharged and your memory card has plenty of space for new pictures. Have your battery re-charger available, too, as you will take many photos with flash.

Share the responsibility for taking pictures

For some Christmas events you might be quite busy serving the guest or helping older family members or being the one who should talk with everybody. Then just give your camera to another person and ask for him or her to take a lot of pictures during the event. Young people will often be very good at picture taking, not least because the availability of camera phones has facilitated that habit to even very young people.

Go close when taking pictures

Go as close as you can what ever you are shooting family members or Christmas things and symbols. Most digital cameras include more in the photo than what is displayed when you frame it, unless you only use the digital display screen. You can always quickly check the result and take a new picture if needed.

Don’t be afraid of arranged picture taking

Many situations around the Christmas tree are quite messy. Don’t worry of arranging a fine scene like grandfather in the big chair with the youngest family member on the lab with a big Christmas present in the small hands.

Arrange an all family members group photo

To have a picture taken if all family members get together for Christmas is an opportunity you shouldn’t miss. If possible think beforehand of a functional locality – indoor or outdoor with enough room for all, including the space for the photographer. Use a tripod to have your self included. Take at least three frames.

Take several shots of the most memorable situations

When you have a very nice situation don’t spare your shots but take at least 3 alternatives. One picture might turn out much better than the others, and the first shot isn’t the best shot very often.

Take pictures without the flash turned on

As Christmas in the northern hemisphere is happening in the dark wintertime many pictures will be taken with the flash on. That is fine for many occasions but the strong flashlight will often remove the nice special Christmas atmosphere. Learn how to manually turn the flash on and off before any important Christmas gathering. Increase the sensitivity to say 400 ASA for natural light photography during Christmas events.

Take candlelight pictures

Candlelight pictures are a rewarding approach to Christmas photography as they generate a special atmosphere of old time and traditions. Include one or two faces in the frame together with the candle. You have to switch off the flash of the camera and improve the sensitivity. If possible support your elbows on a table or the like to avoid camera shake. Still remember to take some alternative shots. Many Christmas symbols are also fine in candlelight.

Take series of Christmas pictures

A number of Christmas pictures showing a process or an event from the phase of preparation, through the main activities until the final stage of saying goodbye or cleaning up can be very interesting later. This can be a fine task for a younger family member to take care of and it is so nice with digital cameras that we don’t have to worry of the cost of pictures that become failures. Such a series of Christmas pictures is excellent for a digital slide show later.

Take special interest in the oldest family members

As time goes by it often turns up that the last pictures of an old family member that passed away was taken at Christmas time. Without exaggerating keep that in mind and make sure you get really nice portraits of the oldest family members in good mood – every Christmas.

Make the best of the newborn and babies

Normally there will be taken a lot of photos of babies and the smallest children and that is a good tradition. Just pay a little attention to how to link the pictures of the children to symbols of Christmas and activities of other family members or friends during the Christmas event.

Preparing for Christmas – also a photo option For children the waiting time to Christmas might be felt like infinity. For us grownups the time might slip away because of all the preparation for Christmas combined with our other duties. Shopping in the decorated streets, preparing presents and cooking food etc. are all fine options for your Christmas photography.

Throw away the bad pictures quickly

During Christmas or just after go through the Christmas pictures and weed all the bad ones out. When you have taken three alternative frames of the same situation, only keep the best one for the future. Be tuff, when editing your Christmas collection of pictures – that will reward you in the long run. Google’s Picasa picture organizer is a fine help and it is free at picasa.google.com

Share your Christmas pictures

It is easy to share your Christmas pictures with family members and friends. At OnlinePhotoSharing.net you will find many options.

Soren Breiting is a stock photographer and communicator. Find examples of his Christmas pictures at azFotos.com and learn to take better pictures at http://www.BetterPhotos.net – more about digital photography at http://www.DigitalPhotographyAndPictures.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Soren_Breiting


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Christmas Angel Gift Poem

Posted in Christmas
June 7, 2010 by Lisa

Angel Wings cardBy Shellie Wilson

This angel craft poem is an ideal craft for loved ones in need. You can make this project as simple as some card stock and a plain white feather or you can place it into a box or gift card.

You can use coloured feathers for a more vibrant feel, but remember angels don’t usually have hot pink feathers or at least we don’t think so.

To make this angel feather poem all you need to do is write out the poem and attach a feather. If you want to make a magnet, just glue on a flat backed magnet to the back of your card. You could also make these with a hanging ribbon to place onto the Christmas tree.

Angel Feather Craft Poem

This is an angel feather,

sent from God above,

to serve as a reminder,

of his gracious love.

It’s from your guardian angel,

that God himself assigned to you,

And fell out in his struggles,

as he protected you.

Each time you almost stumble,

Each time you nearly fall,

Remember to,

Thank God and his angels,

for answering your call.

You can make these for school fundraisers or use them as quick craft projects for girl guides or scouts to make for mothers day or fathers day gifts.

These are very popular as magnets as they are a constant reminder each time you open the fridge, they are also perfect for donating to hospitals to give out to patients or loved ones in need.

Photos are available of this completed project on my website.

This project was written by Shellie Wilson from Craftbits.com – Free Christmas Craft Projects

Pictures for this project are available on my website and my be re-printed with this article.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Shellie_Wilson


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