Sunday, November 4, 2012

Lion Cupcakes

The topic for my lesson on Sunday was courage so I decided to bring Lion cupcakes. I gave an analogy about the physical courage of lions and compared it to spiritual courage.

Beehive Brownies

I thought I'd bring these beehive brownies for the young women on Sunday, since I am the beehive leader. 

Value Cupcakes

I brought these cupcakes to church a few weeks ago for the young women. I divided and tinted vanilla frosting with different colors of food coloring to match the young women values.

Secret Grandpa Activity

We had a "secret grandpa" activity for mutual that turned out to be a really fun activity. About a month before our activity the girls and leaders each selected a "secret grandpa" in the ward to honor. We started out by giving them a card that let them know that they had been selected as a secret grandpa. Then we gave them a small gift each week for four weeks. The picture below is an example of one of the gifts that I gave my secret grandpa. It is marshmallows on a skewer covered in chocolate. We invited them to a dinner prepared by the young women at the end of the four weeks.
The dinner was held at our young women presidents house. We made two different kinds of pasta - chicken Alfredo and spaghetti with meatballs. We served the pasta with garlic bread and provided juice as well. For dessert we had 3 different flavors of individual sized cheesecakes (mint chocolate, vanilla with strawberries, chocolate.)

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Flower Cupcakes

Today I taught the lesson on the second coming in Young Women's and brought these flower cupcake treats for the girls. I got the flower cupcake liners as a gift from my Mom, but I have seen them at Michaels craft store too. I was lazy and bought a box of carrot cake mix and 2 cans of cream cheese frosting from the store to make the cupcakes. I used a 1M piping tip (looks like a star) and swirled the cream cheese frosting beginning in the center, so that it looked like a rose. You have to use a lot of frosting to make the rose design on top. I got many complements on how they looked and tasted. I think the girls are more excited about cupcakes than cookies.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

CTR Cookies

It was my turn to teach in young women's last Sunday. The lesson was on prayer and sabbath day observance. I brought these CTR cookies as treats. For non-LDS readers, CTR means "choose the right." 
To make them -
1.) Add peanut butter and chocolate chips to a basic sugar cookie recipe. 
2.) trace a shield image onto card stock paper from your computer screen. Cut out the image. 
3.) Roll out cookie dough, place shield image on top of cookie dough and around it. 
4.) Bake cookies, let cool.
5.) Buy store bought vanilla frosting or make your own. Add green food coloring to 3/4 of container.
6.) Spread on green frosting thinly. Let dry.
7.) Snip the corner off of a bag and pipe on CTR letters. Or, use an exacto knife to cut out CTR letters on card stock. Place hallow CTR letters on top of cookie and spread white frosting over it (like your using a stencil.)

Mystery Dinner

We celebrated the graduating seniors in our young women's class for mutual a couple of weeks ago. A really neat lady had us over to her house for a mystery dinner. I had never been to one before and it turned out to be really fun.

When we got there we all sat at a large rectangular table. We were given a menu. The food items were listed in code. For example, one menu item was named "boxers best" and it turned out to be punch (juice). Another menu item was "Garden of Eden" and it was the code name for baked apple slices.

There were 5 courses and we selected the menu items we wanted served to us. Since we didn't understand most of the code names for food listed on the menu, we ended up getting served plates of food with funny combinations.

Oh...and did I mention that we had to order our silverware too from the coded menu? I actually got a pretty big kick out of watching people find creative ways to eat their food without silverware until they got some. One of the girls dipped her baked potato in butter and sour cream as she ate it.

The same girl got ice cream for her first course. Like her, I too received no silverware for my first course. I ended up using my crackers to scoop up and eat the jello and corn on my plate.

During dinner, we kept tyring to figure out what code names the food went with, because we couldn't remember all that we had ordered for each course.  At the end, our host told us what foods the code names on our menu were associated with.

When I got home I looked up more ideas for mystery dinners online. Some mystery dinner food ideas (code names and answers) can be found in the list above if you'd like to try this at home.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Crown Cookies

I made these crown cookies tonight to bring to church tomorrow for the young women. I will be teaching the lesson on Temple marriage.

I didn't use a cookie cutter. I traced a crown image from my computer screen onto card stock paper. I rolled out my cookie dough (sugar cookie with a few Tbsp of cocoa powder added) and used a knife to cut the dough around the crown image.

This time, I bought vanilla frosting from the store. I added a few drops of red food coloring to the frosting to make it pink and added peppermint extract to taste.

For the lettering, I added a few more drops of red food coloring to make the frosting darker and piped it on to the cookie. I also used pink jelly beans to decorate the crowns. The message on the cookie says "Daughter of a Heavenly King".

Saturday, May 12, 2012


We learned how to do makeup for our mutual activity last Wednesday. We had the activity at my house, because I wanted to project what was on my computer screen onto my TV screen so we could watch bigger online videos.  I picked out a few makeup video tutorials to watch that were from credible companies like Maybelline, Sephira, clique, etc.

We started out talking about the grooming and appearance standards in the "For the Strength of Youth" pamphlet. Where it talks about how the youth should maintain modesty in their appearance, which of course applies to all of us. We talked about avoiding extremes in appearance (lady gaga) and also to avoid being extremely casual in our appearance.

I have included a couple of the videos that I think were most popular from our activity. The first covers eyebrows and the second video is about how to get a more natural look with makeup.

After watching the movies, the girls paired up and did each others make up.  The make up came from the dollar store. We spent less than $15 on it and I have to say that I was pretty impressed by the selection and quality of makeup we got there.

I made two types of treats and we had some salty popcorn to balance out the sweetness. I made layered bars with a brownie base, marshmallow center, and chocolate/peanut butter/rice crispy topping. I also made peanut butter rice crispy no-bake cookies. I've included pictures and recipes for the treats below.

The layered brownie recipe

The peanut butter no-bake cookie recipe

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Gardening Activity

We had a gardening activity for mutual last week that turned out to be so fun. The young women's president prepared a little lesson on nutrition that we started out with. She found a list of questions about nutrition online that we went through as a class. The girls would guess the answers and she would tell them if they were right or wrong.

The refreshments were nutritious foods like strawberries, grapes, carrots (w/ranch), celery (w/peanut butter), etc.

Then we painted our garden pots with acrylic paint. The girls were so creative with their designs. Some of the designs made were of polka dots, an ocean scene, a dotted tree, etc. I used a celery stick to dip in paint and stamp petals onto my pot to create flowers. See picture below.

We filled the pots with potting soil and planted different kinds of vegetables / herbs. In the future we are going to have the girls make a dish using the vegetable / herb they grow as an ingredient. Then they will bring the dish they create to another activity.  I decided to plant thyme, because it is one of my favorite herbs. I like to use it when I make cheese gnocchi. It goes well in a pasta dish I make too that has sauteed mushrooms, cream sauce, hard cheese, and pork.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

SLC Temple Cookies

I'm teaching the lesson today in young women's. I'm going to bring these SLC Temple cookies as a treat. I made them out of my favorite gingerbread cookie recipe, white icing and black frosting.

I rolled out the cookie dough and cut a basic shape of the SLC temple before baking. The black frosting got a little runny on some of the cookies. Next time I plan to use my edible markers instead. I think royal icing would work better too, instead of the powdered sugar + water combination I used to decorate them.

The message attached says "a true love story never ends." You can find the message here.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Inspirational Candle Holder

In my ward, the young women's presidency likes to give birthday gifts that are related to the young women's theme for the year. I got to come up with the idea for birthday gifts this year for the young women. I thought it would be fun to make a frosted glass candle holder with the words "let your light shine." This quote is actually a variation on what the theme is this year.

Steps for making the candle holder
1.) Print the wording in the font you like onto a sticker sheet (or trace the lettering from your computer screen onto your sticker paper)
2.) Cut the letters out with an exacto knife
3.) Place the stickers on the candle holder (getting them straight can be tricky)
4.) Spray several coats of frosted glass on the candle holder over the stickers and all around the outside
5.) Once the frosted glass is dry, remove the stickers.

Sound Scavenger Hunt

We had a sound scavenger hunt last Wednesday for mutual that turned out to be really fun. We split the young women into two groups. We gave them a list of 50 sounds to record and the group who recorded the most within an hour got a prize. We ended up using cell phones with audio recorders in them for the game.

Many of the sound ideas came from this website. I created a few of my own. The funniest one was the sound of someone doing "the worm" dance. The young women's president was kind enough to do "the worm" for one group, lol. We tried to keep the scavenger hunt around the church and just outside.

The purple flower hair clips were the winning prize. I made them out of a old shirt I had, hot glue, a metal bead and a bobby pin. Here is a tutorial on how to make them. I used shear material and tried to push the fabric up while gluing it in a way that would make the flowers look more poofy and less flat. I learned that it is better to use material that does not fray easily around the edges.

I brought chocolate dipped strawberries and orange cupcakes with orange glaze for refreshments.

For the strawberries -
I melted milk and white chocolate melts separately in the microwave. Each took about 1 min to melt. After dipping them and letting them set, I put the remaining chocolate into bags, cut a very small hole and drizzled contrasting color lines of chocolate over each.

For the cupcakes -
The orange cupcake recipe came from the allrecipes website. The orange glaze recipe came from an old addition of the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook. The glaze is made of powdered sugar, butter, orange juice, orange zest and orange food coloring (few drops of red & many yellow drops of food coloring mixed together.) I dipped the cupcakes in the glaze and once they dried, I zigzagged white chocolate over them.

Chocolate Scripture Handouts

I got the idea for making these mini scriptures out of Hersey candy bars online. Aren't they cute? There is a tutorial on the blog "Raising a Kumquat" if you'd like to check it out. I handed these treats out during my young women's lesson about a month ago.  I decided to include the young women's theme this year for the scripture on the front (D&C 115:5.)

1.) Office stores will often sell individual pieces of colored paper
2.) Office stores may have a cutting tool onsite you can use for free
3.) I bought the candy bars in bulk
4.) I think rounder topped candy bars look better (mine were a little too flat).
5.) I also think the gold wrapped candy bars look better.