Frosty – Unveiling

the unveiling of Frosty the Snowman

the unveiling of Frosty the Snowman

Tonight was the official unveiling of my candy covered sculpture inspired by Frosty the Snowman. At about 6:30 p.m. with a gathering of family and friends and the crew of Cold Stone Creamery we remove the butcher paper covering my snowman. It was fun to see every ones reactions. All seemed to enjoy it. I loved it when a young toddler pulled up a chair so he could see the window better. The owner of Cold Stone organized a scavenger hunt to encourage everyone who came to see South Jordan‘s Light the Night to see all the candy window. By going to the 5 stores and turning in your sheet you got a free small ice cream cone. It was a great idea and lots of people took advantage of it. It made the night that much more fun.

I didn’t get any close up shots taken of my window. I’ll have to go back and get some more pictures taken and post them here. Tonight was more about enjoying the experience than taking photos.


Gift Idea #17 – Historically Inspired Photo Shoot

idea numbers17Do you have an old family photo that you really love? How about using it as the inspiration for a new family photo? You could replicate the scene, the style of dress or just the arrangement of the people. Then you could hang the two images next to each other on the wall. Or it would be fun to use the two images together on a post card or greeting card to send to family and friends. This project will also give you the opportunity to share stories or memories about the original photo and the people in that photo.

If you are inspired by this idea, just let those creative juices run and see where it takes you.


Gift Idea #16 – Family Advent Calendar

idea numbers16I love advent calendars and I think putting together one that focuses on family would be lots of fun. There are tons of fun ways to make your own advent calender. DesignMom shares some of her favorites in a recent Inspiration Scout article. The advent calendars that include an activity or message would work perfectly for this. Just plan something for each day that shares something about an ancestor or family member. You could focus on just one person or you could do lots of different people. Another option would be to do little photos of family members with just a bit about them. Wouldn’t that be a beautiful sight on Christmas to have lots of family photos to share the holiday with. Below are a few ideas to get you started.

5 Favorites: DIY Advent Calendar

Reusable DIY Advent Calendar

34 Best Christmas Advent Calendars


Gift Idea #15 – Family Puzzle

idea numbers15I got the idea for this gift from a magazine article on family unity.

“My wife and I prepared an object lesson for our children on the importance of family unity by creating a puzzle. I found a current family picture that I then copied and cut into puzzle pieces. I made sure each piece included the face of one family member. Before the lesson I prepared a few thoughts on each person—the things that made him or her unique and special to our family.”

This idea inspired me to think how much fun it would be to do the same thing with an old family photo and have stories about the people on the puzzle piece so that everyone in the family can get to know their extended family members or ancestors better.

You can make your own puzzle or there are many online sources for making custom puzzles from your photos. Of those I looked at seems the most compatible to this idea because they have puzzles options with only a few pieces. One way to adapt the idea would be to write numbers on the back of the puzzle pieces and write the stories on a piece of paper with the corresponding number.

Portrait Puzzles

Photo Puzzles

Custom Puzzles



Gift Idea #14 – Memory Quilt or Pillow

idea numbers14I have contemplated making a memory quilt for my mom’s ninetieth birthday coming up in a few months. There are a few different basic approaches to a memory quilt. I think the most common is to use fabric from the person’s clothing to make the quilt blocks. Another way is to have photos transferred to fabric and use those in the quilt blocks. A third way in my mind is to choose block patterns that are symbolic of the person the quilt honors.

I think it would be neat to join all three of these into one quilt. Depending on the circumstances you might not have clothing or photos from an ancestor. But you could still create a memory quilt. I can imagine a quilt with blocks that help to tell the story of the ancestors life. It would be neat to cuddled up with a child or grandchild in the memory quilt and share stories about their family.

A quilt could also serve to remember several family members. Or to make the project smaller a pillow could be put together instead of an entire quilt. Adapt this idea to your needs and circumstances. You don’t even have to know how to sew. There are quilters who are willing an able to put your project together for you. Below are a few links with ideas on what others have done for memory quilts.

Memory Quilt

Custom Memory Quilts

Pictures of Memory Quilts

50 for 50 #47 – Build a Snowman

Frosty looking out the Cold Stone window

When I made a list of things I might like to do to celebrate turning 50 years old this year, I didn’t think that “build a snowman” would be a snowman out of candy. But that is how it turned out. If you have followed my blog much you know that I’ve built Frosty for several months now. Well today he is official built! I finished installing him in the window at Cold Stone Creamery on Redwood Road in South Jordan. He looks good and I’m excited for the unveiling tomorrow night. I won’t be cold but they are forecasting some rain. Hopefully it won’t come until after the unveiling. The install went fairly smoothly. A few little glitches but nothing major. It is amazing how tired I feel now that it is all in. I’ll post some photos of the completed window after the unveiling tomorrow night.

some of the miniature figures in the Frosty window

Frosty Update

Sorry to be slow about posting today. I’m in the middle of installing my candy sculpture Frosty the Snowman. The unveiling is Friday night at 6:30 p.m. at the Cold Stone on Redwood Road in South Jordan, Utah. If you live in the area, come and join the fun. South Jordan has lots of fun stuff planned to kick off the holiday season. He is looking good so far. I can’t wait to see all the parts and pieces come together. I’ll post some photos soon.


Gift Idea #13 – A Family Tree

A beautiful family tree or pedigree chart would make a wonderful gift for any member of your family. There are so many, many ways to do a family tree. I did a post about pedigree charts last summer that shows a few options. Some are very simple with and others are very elaborate works of art. You can make your own from scratch or there are lots of options for customized charts. has more than a dozen Custom Family Tree Art options. A search of “custom family tree” on comes up with more than 4,000 items. I never dreamed there were so many family tree styles out there. One summer not too long ago I drew a couple of family trees for my mother and my mother-in-law. I’ll have to find those on my computer and write a post about them sometime. You have two options. Create something yourself or pick one of the customizable options out there. If you enjoy drawing or crafting I’d suggest doing something on your own. Look at the options out there and let them be your inspiration.



Gift Idea #12 – Ancestral Greeting Card

How about using an old family photo with your family by using it in a Christmas card. I’ve never been too good about sending out traditional holiday cards every year but I think that I’ll add an e-card to this years family directory and send it out for Christmas. I could also use it on the calendar I’m making to give to my family this year. It only seems fitting to use the image I have of Mary Taylor this year with all the things I’ve done to learn more about her. I think I’ll include a very short bio on the back of the card. I’ll post it here when I get it done over the next few days.

There are lots of resources both local and on the internet to help you put together a custom card featuring one of your ancestors. I find another blog post on Making an Ancestral Greeting Card here.



Gift Idea #11 – Family Cookbook

What could be better than a cookbook full of all of your family‘s favorite recipes? This is another project that is on my to-do list for some future date.

A family cookbook could be a simple project such as a binder with just a few recipes to start or even a recipe box. These two ideas have the advantage the ability to start small and add to them in the future. The could even be started with the intention that when the collection of recipes is large enough to put them into a printed book.

On the other end of the scale would be a beautifully bound book with photos of the recipes and the stories behind these family favorites. Or do an enhanced ebook with videos about the recipes and their stories. Which ever direction you decide to take this project it is bound to bring up treasured memories and give new opportunities to make new memories all centered around families and good food.

Here are a few links for sites that can help you get a family cookbook put together.

Make a Family Cookbook

Cookbook Software

G&R Publishing

Heritage Cookbook

Family Cookbook Binders

Family Cookbooks