About Ali Cummins

Posts by Ali Cummins:

Tin Can Luminaries

I love using things we already have around the house for our crafts. It saves a trip to the store, teaches the girls about recycling, and expands their imagination by thinking about items in a new way. We made these 4th of July luminaries from tin cans we had left over from a particularly satisfying dinner (okay, it was from a can; I can’t vouch for it being too satisfying). The girls had fun looking for 4th of July images that would work on the cans, and we traced them out together. Now we have a fun holiday mantel decoration that the girls helped make!

What You’ll Need:Tin Can Luminaires

Tin cans, washed

Paint

Sharpie marker

Painter’s tape or masking tape

Nails

Hammer


1) Wash the tin cans. Hopefully you’ll be keeping these for a while.

2) Find the images you would like to use and draw them on the can with your Sharpie.

 

3) Use the nail and hammer to make holes along the lines of your image. This will take a bit of time, so make sure you have something to keep the kids busy!

4) Paint the cans and allow them to dry. Add a coat of Mod Podge to seal the paint. You may need to re-poke some of the holes after the paint and Mod Podge dry.

5) Add votive candles and enjoy!

Tin Can Luminaires 2

Nurture the Experience:

Take the opportunity to teach your child about recycling. Check out this site: Science Kids, and explore it with your kid. It is full of videos, fun facts, and activities designed to engage your child in learning all about recycling. After you’ve spent some time with this, allow your child to help you sort the recycling in your own house. Make sure to talk about some of the facts you learned from the site to help bring what she learned into context. If you normally have your recycling picked up at the curb, take a special trip to the recycling center to bring the concepts full circle.

Easy Homemade Valentine’s Creations

Each Valentine’s Day the girls come home with a bag full of generic Valentine’s Day cards from the daycare Valentine’s Day party. Except, there are always a few that are creative. On busy years I role my eyes and wonder what Supermom decided to put those together but, in my heart of hearts, I love making homemade Valentine’s with the girls. Not only do I enjoy the process of making Valentines but I love the thought that goes into it. There is so much more meaning then buying a box from Walmart.  (more…)

Fruit Kabobs

Never to shy away from adventures that would make most people exhausted just thinking about them, Lesley and I took the girls on vacation to Jellystone Park in Cave City, KY, this past month. It was amazing and packed full of fun times and adventures. One of the those times was making fruit kabobs for the grill. Lesley and I are not huge fans of meat, so we needed to get creative if we were going to try kabobs. Grilled watermelon is all over the place this year, and we were excited to try it. We assembled and grilled. It was interesting how the flavors of both the pineapple and watermelon changed on the grill. Most surprising was the watermelon. It definitely did not taste the way watermelon should. I can see why people like it, but you have to be ready for the difference the grill makes! (more…)

Baked Spaghetti

We are like any traditional American family. Spaghetti is a staple. It’s so quick. So easy. And, so cheap! Not to mention it stores really well so it’s also simple to make a bunch and bring it for lunch the rest of the week. It’s hard not to make it every night of the week. There would probably be a mutiny if I did that. Riley is already slightly bored of it. So, I needed to come up with something just as fantastic just a little more exciting.




Here it is! A cure for spaghetti boredom! This dish has the same great spaghetti taste with the same great kid appeal but has kicked the cheesiness factor up a notch. Quick and simple — a great weekday meal.

Baked Spaghetti

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Baked Spaghetti

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Cook spaghetti according to package directions. Drain noodles and return to pan.
  3. Thoroughly mix together spaghetti, spaghetti sauce, and 1 cup of shredded cheese.
  4. Pour spaghetti mixture in 9 x 13-inch pan. Cover with remaining cheese.
  5. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until cheese begins to boil.

Notes

This dish can be easily customized with: Red pepper flakes Minced garlic Olive oil (drizzled on top) Onions Pepperoni

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Biscoff No-Bake Cookies

If you have not tried Biscoff spread, you are missing out. You use to only be able to get Biscoff cookies on Delta flights; however, those are now being sold in stores as well. It is a definite must for your next shopping list. The spread is made from the cookies and just seems to melt in your mouth. These cookies have the same effect and are guaranteed please. Be careful though, you won’t be able to stop eating them once you start.




Biscoff No-Bake Cookies

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Biscoff No-Bake Cookies

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Melt butter in a medium pan. Add milk and sugar, and bring to a boil.
  2. Boil for 2 minutes, stirring consistently.
  3. Remove from heat, and stir in vanilla and Biscoff spread.
  4. After thoroughly mixed, add oats.
  5. Scoop mixture in desired size onto wax paper and allow to cool.
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