BLACK FRIDAY SALE!!

**THANK YOU TO EVERYONE THAT TOOK ADVANTAGE OF OUR BLACK FRIDAY SALE...IT IS NOW OVER***

We are so excited this year to offer a HUGE Black Friday Sale that allows you to save on ANY of our products! 

You can use this coupon code to MIX AND MATCH on any of our products! 

Use code: BLACKFRIDAY2016 to SAVE 10% OFF

any purchase over $50!!!! 

(**NOTE: This coupon code cannot be combined with any offer and cannot be used on previous purchases.

Coupon code expires Friday, November 25th at 11:59EST. )

 

Use the promo code on any of our subscriptions - 3, 6 or 12 months shipping to Canada or to the US! Give the gift of creativity that can start in December or January and continue to give each month! 

Use code: BLACKFRIDAY2016 to SAVE 10% off any subscription! 

GET ONE MONTH FREE ON A 12 MONTH SUBSCRIPTION WITH THE 10% OFF CODE!

 
 

You can also use it on either of our Crafty Christmas Countdown boxes that are new this year and a great way for your creative child to countdown for Christmas! There are two options to choose from. 

They have 7 crafts for your child to have a craft each day to count down until Christmas! 

Lastly, you can use the Black Friday Coupon code to try out any of our Singles Boxes (over $50) or mix and match with a subscription or a Crafty Countdown box! 

We've got over 20 Single Box themes to choose from! Which one are you going to choose??!

Happy shopping and saving! 

Elf Food and Elf Application

Another great way to incorporate the Elf on the Shelf is to make Elf Food! We made this last year and the boys loved it. We actually made it together and then watched our first Christmas movie! 

Items Required:

  • 1/2 c. popping corn
  • Salt
  • 1/4 cup Butter
  • 2.5 cups mini marshmallows
  • Green Food colouring
  • 1/2 Cup Mini Marshmallows
  • M&M Candies – Red
  • Cashews (if desired)

Pop the popcorn like normal. You can also use microwave popcorn.  Sprinkle salt as desired.

Melt butter in a saucepan (always use the stove with an adult!). Add 2 1/2 c mini marshmallows and allow to melt stirring frequently. Sir until they are melted. Add food colouring the mix. Slowly pour the mix over the popcorn. Stirring frequently. As you add more, it will become stickier, so add more mix slowly. Pour your popcorn onto a lined cookie sheet. 

Add marshmallows, m & m, cashews and any other desired snack food. Drizzle remaining mix over top (do not mix).  Allow to dry and enjoy your elf food!!

 

Another fun activity is to have your child fill out an "Elf Application"!

Just right click on the photo and print it. Have them fill it out and either give it to Santa at the Mall or give it to the elf to take it back to the north pole....no promises but it does teach fun lessons about "applying" for things! ;) 

 

Elf on The Shelf Ideas and FREE Printable!

It's that time of year again where that mischievous or friendly little elf comes back from the North Pole! I know some parents refuse to have one as they find it way too difficult to come up with ideas, think of hiding him or her every day and just the thought of an elf watching has even creeped a few people out. I get it...but...at our house, the elf is something that my husband and I love seeing our boys facing, hunting for him, thinking about him first thing when they wake up in the morning and just bringing more magic to Christmas!

 

This is our boys last year when Charlie arrived. At our house, Charlie brings the Christmas books back and brings a new one each year! He sets the table for our Christmas breakfast and we get to use our special cups and plates for a nice family breakfast.  At our house, Charlie comes on the first weekend in December (the boys don't know that but it works out easiest for me to remember and for use to be able to enjoy our family breakfast!).  Then each day we move Charlie around and the kids run around looking for him each morning.  Our elf can be funny but also has sent little notes for our boys. 

15151209_726480300851591_1656395417_n.jpg
 

So I thought this year wouldn't be fun to have little notes that he can have with him to spread some fun?! I will also have these for you (in this blog below) as a free printable! So here are some ideas on what you can have you elf doing this year: 

 

Our boys thought it was so funny when Charlie was hanging from a clothesline in our oldest son's underwear. 

Then he was playing Hungry, Hungry Hippos. 

One of our favourites is when Charlie barricades a room with tape.  Then all day we have to crawl under the trap to get through. It's a fun one!

My husband loves hanging the boys toys from various spots in the house with fishing line so it kind of looks like it's actually flying! 

 

Charlie has also used Daddy's shaving cream and had a shaving cream beard ;) 

One of our other favourites is when Charlie takes a toilet paper roll and rolls down the stairs. 

The next one was fun, but I made sure to do it on a day when we weren't home and the kids weren't needing a glass of water. Charlie was up in our water dispenser with a cup, ready to get a drink! 

The last is when Charlie took ALL of the boys stuffed animals and lined them up on the couch. 

 

One of the funniest that the boys loved last year was finding Charlie in the fridge and he had written a message on the eggs! It took them a while to find him though and we "accidentally" found him when we went to make breakfast!

Then Charlie was back to his mischievous self and we kept the toilet paper from the roll down the stairs and he trashed the stairway. The boys were in aw that he made such a mess and kept telling him he better clean that up!

Then Charlie wanted to help with laundry...

Then the last is a favourite. We all know in our house that Charlie LOVES hot cocoa but he always spills it! 

So those are some ideas on what you can do for the Elf On the Shelf this year! Here is the free printable I was mentioning. The purpose is to print it, then cut the cards out and have him using them to communicate with your little ones. I love the joke and can't wait for our boys to see this one! 

ElfOnTheShelf.jpg
 

Just click on the photo and right click it and hit print! Happy Elf on The Shelf time!! :) 

Best Ever....Banana Crumble Muffins

Who doesn't love Banana muffins?! Not only are they a great snack but they are an easy school lunch option as well. I love making this recipe as mini muffins as the kids can't get enough!  Here is my recipe for Banana Crumble Muffins!

What you will need:

-1 1/2 cup All purpose flour

-1/3 cup Butter (salted or unsalted - also melted)

-1 tsp Baking Soda

-1 tsp Baking Powder

-1/2 tsp Salt

-2 Bananas Mashed

-3/4 Sugar

-1 egg lightly beaten

Streusel:

-1/3 cup brown Sugar

-2 tbsp flour

- 1/8 tablespoon

-1 tbsp butter

 

Instructions:

Mix Flour (1 1/2 cup), baking sod and baking powder and salt.

 

 

In another bowl mix bananas, sugar, egg and butter (melted).

 
 

Mix together.

 

Spoon into cups then mix streusel and sprinkle!

 

I promise you the kids will keep coming back for more!! Enjoy! :) 

 

Now, the key is to grab one,  make yourself a coffee and enjoy!!! 

Thanksgiving Dessert Ideas

If you're looking for a few dessert ideas for this weekend for Thanksgiving, these might tempt your taste buds! Check out my Thanksgiving/Halloween Trifle, Pumpkin Spice Muffins and my Infamous Apple Crisp!

 

Thanksgiving or Halloween Trifle:

This recipe is great for a Thanksgiving treat or it will also make a nice Halloween party dessert!

Here's what you will need:

  • box of chocolate cake mix (and all ingredient's required on the box for the cake mix)
  • package of chocolate pudding
  • 1 package of whipped cream
  • 1 package of Reese's Pieces
  • 1 package of mini Peanut Butter Cups  
 

This recipe look amazing when you have a big glass bowl or trifle bowl to display it in. Some people call it mud pie but I prefer using the word trifle!

1. First bake the boxed cake as directed on the box. Let cool

2. While waiting for the cake to cool, make the chocolate pudding.

3. Layer the cooled cake and the chocolate pudding into the glass bowl or the trifle bowl.

4. Add the cool whip on top.

5. Add the crushed peanut butter cups and the Reece's Pieces to the top of the cake for garnish. 

6. Dig in and enjoy!!    

 

umpkin Spice Muffins

One of my favourite things of the Fall season is pumpkin spice EVERYTHING! I am obsessed! I love muffins, lattes, Frappuccino's and this year I tried the Cheerios and I have to say I didn't mind them! This is one of my favourite and easy recipes to make.

 

Here's what you will need:

  • 1 package of spice cake mix
  • 1 can of pure pumpkin (not to be mistaken with pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1/2 c. water
  • Cool whip (if desired)

Mix the spice cake mix, the pure pumpkin and the water together. Bake for approximately 17-18 minutes at the temperature directed on the cake box. Makes 36-40 mini muffins or 18-24 big muffins.  

 

y Infamous Apple Crisp

This is hands down my favourite and go to recipe that everyone asks me to make for any event! I LOVE making it as it's a super go to recipe that I usually have all of the ingredients kicking around my house!

 

Here's what you will need:

  • 4 medium apples, peeled and cored
  • 3/4 c. all purpose flour
  • 1 c. packed brown sugar
  • 1 c. oats
  • 1 1/2 tsps. of cinnamon
  • 2 tsp of vanilla
  • 1/2 c. of margarine softened

Heat the oven to 350 degrees.  Spread the apples in a greased glass dish (I like using the small square one for this recipe and if I need to make a bigger one - 8.5x11 I would use 6 apples and double the crisp - I love the crisp part!).

Mix all ingredients with a fork in a bowl. Sprinkle over the apples. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Cool and enjoy with whip cream or vanilla ice cream!

YUM! Enjoy!! :)

Thanksgiving Crafty FUN!

The table needs to be set, the turkey in the oven and the dessert still isn't done. The kids are whining that they are bored as the adults are watching football on TV.... sound familiar?? Well here are 3 crafts that you can set up at a small kids craft table during your Thanksgiving celebration to keep them busy and decorate for Thanksgiving! 

 

1. Turkey Leaf Craft - 

If you're going to use real leaves, this is another great activity that you can do with the kids while you're family is together.  Get the whole family outside for a nice Fall hike and find some amazing and vibrant leaves. 

This craft is great for kids to use their fine motor skills while cutting out the parts and the pieces for the turkey and gluing them together. You can use real leaves or artificial leaves.  If you let the leaves dry enough, (or you use artificial ones) you can even get the child or your entire family to write their names on the leaves or what they are thankful for this Thanksgiving! 

Turkey Leaf Craft

Turkey Leaf Craft

 

2. Turkey Place Setting Craft -  

This is a fun craft for the kids (or the whole family!) to craft before supper is ready so that it can be placed on the table to know where everyone is sitting. 

We simply used patterned paper as the turkey tail and then cut out the turkey shapes for his body and beak and then used googly eyes. We used a fancy tag punch for the tag. It also helps to have a nice fancy napkin behind them ;) 

Turkey Place Setting Craft 

Turkey Place Setting Craft 

 

3. Turkey Plate Craft -  

This was one of our favourites as it's always fun to get the good old paint out :) 

Just as the first craft, you will need either artificial or real vibrant leaves. Simply paint a paper plate and use google eyes and cut a beak and a waddle. Then glue the leaves to the back of the paper plate! Such a fun and creative craft to do :) 

Turkey Plate Craft 

Turkey Plate Craft 

 

Wishing you and your family a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend!! We have so much to be thankful for and will be spending some quality family time together this weekend (cleaning out our garage and closing our pool counts as that right?!). 

Don't forget to download your FREE FALL PRINTABLE HERE for another fun activity for you to do with your family this weekend! 

We have lots of big news coming soon so stay tuned!! 

Fall Free Printable

I can't get enough of Fall! I love the smells, the cooler weather and comfy clothes and food. I love the routine of things and I love the busyness of fall too!

Here's a fun way to spend some time with your kiddos and create family memories together. Why not print our free printable - Fall Bucket List!

This is such a fun way for your kids to be able to focus on what activities need to be done to check the list off and need to work together towards a goal.

fall_bucketlist.jpg

Simply right click on the image and save it to your desktop or computer. Hit print and post it on the fridge or the wall for the entire family to see it so that you can check off items as you go!

Don't forget we still have TWO Fall Single Boxes to choose from:

Can't wait to share with you our Fall decorations and favourites...mmm...my new favourite candle included! ;)

Apples, Apples and More Apples!

It's apple picking season and that means it's yummy food and snack season with all things apple! We love going apple picking (we are going next week!) and so I thought it would be great to share with you a few easy recipes and a craft idea that you can do with apples.

My usual go to recipe with apples is my famous apple crisp. I will be sharing that on the blog soon...don't you worry! :) The first recipe I enjoy making is a healthy and quick after school snack or a great protein pick me up.  The other is great for a gathering or a function is our go to around here. 

This quick and easy (and healthy!) snack is great for an after school snack idea that the kids can help with. 

 

Here's what you will need:

  • apples (whatever kind you choose!)
  • peanut butter or almond butter
  • oats

Core out the middle of the apple. Then slick the apple in slices. Spread the nut butter onto one of the slices and sprinkle oats.  Put another apple slice on top and that makes an easy apple protein sandwich!

The second recipe is one that I make for functions, get together and parties all of the time! It's a family favourite and it always disappears fast! 

 

Here's what you will need:

  • Apples (we prefer the granny smith kind since the dip is so sweet)
  • Cream cheese
  • Apple Caramel Dip
  • Skor bards (or whatever favourite chocolate bar you prefer)

Spread the cream cheese over a plate. Then pour the caramel sauce all over the cream cheese. Hammer the skor bar into small bits and sprinkle over top of the caramel and cream cheese mixture. Cut up the apples and serve. YUM! 

Last year we had a few extra apples left over and so we decided to cut the apple in half and do a painting with them. It was a blast! It taught colours, what an apple looks like inside, the seeds and how apples grow and shapes and patterns.

 

Here's what you will need:

  • Apples
  • Popsicle Sticks
  • Paint
  • Paper

Cut the apple in half and stick a popsicle stick in it.

 

Paint the apple or dip the apple in the paint. Stamp it on the paper. I tried to teach my son about patterns and colours.

 

He loved doing this - particularly discovering about the apple and being creative!

 

 

Banana Split Kabobs for Lucas' 5th Birthday

Today we celebrate our oldest turning 5! Five years ago today we were blessed with this little man with his warm heart, his kind soul, an inquisitive and smart mind and a passion and love for science, art and engineering! I can't believe he's five already!! 

 

We celebrated this morning with his requested french toast and I added a little strawberries and whip cream plus a candle...he thought that was the best! I love making birthdays special :) 

 

He was pretty excited to find out he got a mini drone and a set of Snap Circuits! He even hugged the little drone (he's been asking all summer for one and was saving his money for one...but we couldn't help but spoil him on his special day!). 

Since today was a school day, we had to make something somewhat healthy for him to take in for his friends to celebrate his birthday. I decided this year since he loves fruit kabobs to add a little twist to them and make a banana split kabob with a little special treat on them... a chocolate and sprinkled dipped marshmallow! :) 

Curiosity Box Banana Split Kabob
 

Here's what you will need:

  • Kabob Sticks
  • Strawberries
  • Pineapple
  • Bananas
  • Marshmallows (we chose the GIANT ones!)
  • Chocolate chips
  • Sprinkles

First place the chocolate chips in a pan with a little bit of milk. Melt until all of the lumps have melted. Let cool for about 7 minutes (but not harden).

Wash and cut the strawberries. Dip the strawberries into chocolate and then place them on a baking sheet with parchment paper and place in the fridge to let the chocolate harden. 

 

Dip the marshmallows in chocolate and then sprinkles right after. Allow to harden too.

 

Once the chocolate on the strawberries and the marshmallows have dried, cut up the bananas and pineapple. Place on kabob skewers as desired. I did the strawberries, pineapple and marshmallows the day before and did the bananas this morning so they didn't go all yucky! This was a hit at my son's school and it was fun and pretty healthy ;) 

I love how they turned out!! 

Now off to celebrate our little man some more tonight and then planning for his Spider-Man birthday this weekend. Can't wait to share the details! 

Meal Planning and FREE Printable!

With the fall season almost here (my favourite!), back to school and routine, I thought what better time to get back into my meal planning. I LOVE planning out my weekly suppers and sitting down to figure out my grocery list each week (I can't be the only one, am I?!).  So I thought it would be great for me to share with you an easy way to plan your meals and help with your grocery list too! 

Each week I like to figure out what activities we have that week and plan our meals around them so that way we are not trying to figure out what to eat last minute. It's helpful because not only does it guide you for what to eat, but it also helps with your grocery shopping (and it saves you money by planning!). 

Here's what I like to do each week. I use this menu plan (I prefer lines but we have both of them for you as an option so you can choose!) and I plan out our week. I write at the top what activities we have that week so I know if we are going to be rushed and need a quick dinner idea (like this week our boys have skating on Wednesday and then we have a birthday party for our oldest on Saturday).  

My grocery list is on the pink sticky note (I know there are apps for this, but personally I prefer to write everything down and take my sticky note with me...call me old fashioned I know!). With my grocery list, I transfer over anything at the bottom of the planner and then I have areas of the grocery store - fruits, veggies, meats and then everything else in the middle of the store :)

With the meal planner, what you can do is write the meal at the top of the list and then in the middle, write what ingredients it needs. If it's an easier meal like pork chops and rice, obviously you wouldn't need to write out the ingredients. However if it's a more difficult menu item like lasagna, then you can write everything out that you need for that recipe. Then at the bottom, there is a handy section for what needs to go on your grocery list (this is where you check your pantry and fridge first to see what items you have). Then transfer over your grocery list items to your grocery list. 

I also thought it would be helpful for you to give you some supper and meal plan ideas!! Here are a few of our favourites (NOTE: I will be blog posting some of these in the next couple of months...if you have a preference, leave a comment or email me at cassie@curiositybox.ca). 

Meal Plan Ideas:

  • Lasagna
  • Pork Tenderloin with mashed potatoes
  • Pork Chops with rice and a veggie
  • Chicken Fajitas
  • Tacos (chicken or beef or fish)
  • Nachos (beef or chicken)
  • Quesadilla 
  • Spaghetti with garlic toast and caesar salad
  • Chicken Alfredo Pasta (LOVE THIS ONE!!) 
  • Stuffed Chicken with mini potatoes and bbq'd veggies
  • Meat loaf and scalloped potatoes and cauliflower
  • Sheppards' Pie
  • Chili
  • Chicken or beef kabobs
  • Hamburgers with home made french fries
  • Homemade macaroni and cheese with salad
  • Homemade pizzas
  • Taco Salad - find the recipe HERE
  • Meatballs with rice or meatball subs
  • Chicken Enchiladas 
  • Cabbage Rolls
  • Pork Chops with rice and corn

I love trying new recipes too so I will be sure to post some more soon!

So here is the FREE Printable that you can click on and print. As I said before, there is a version with lines and a version without.

Meal Planner No Lines
Meal Planner Lines

Happy meal planning :)