Creamy Red Hot Dipping Sauce

With New Year’s Eve parties planned for this week, I thought this would be the perfect time to share my new favorite dip recipe.  I originally made this as a dipping sauce for meatballs, but we’ve tried it on just about everything.  It’s a great sandwich spread.  It makes Sauerkraut Balls even better.  I’ve even eaten it just spread on a cracker.  Besides all that, I find its orange color kind of festive.

Creamy Red Hot Dip by Crafty Staci
Creamy Red Hot Dip by Crafty Staci

Creamy Red Hot Dipping Sauce

1/2 cup sour cream

4 ounces cream cheese, softened

1/4 cup Frank’s Red Hot Sauce

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons minced parsley

Creamy Red Hot Dipping Sauce Ingredients
Creamy Red Hot Dipping Sauce Ingredients

Combine all ingredients in a bowl.  Mix with a mixer or stir until completely blended.  This is even better after it sits in the fridge for a few hours.  If it’s too thick for your taste, just blend in a little milk or cream.

I called this “Red Hot” because of the pepper sauce, and it is spicy, but not in a crazy way.  I can’t wait to try this on a burger, or as dip for chicken tenders, or with french fries, or veggies…

Creamy Red Hot Dipping Sauce from Crafty Staci
Creamy Red Hot Dipping Sauce from Crafty Staci

Friday Favorites–New Year’s Eve

I’m floored by the fact that we’re about to flip our calendars over to 2015.  I mean, didn’t the 90’s JUST happen?  I remember crossing our fingers on December 31, 1999 and hoping that our giant, dial-up computer would still work when we got up the next morning.  Just so I don’t leave you in suspense, it did - it just reset to 1980.  No one around here is looking to turn back the clock this year though.  We had a lot of big adventures in 2014 and we’re anxious to see what 2015 has to offer.  Our first goal is to stay awake long enough to greet the new year.

New Year's Eve - Crafty Staci's Friday Favorites

I don’t remember ever attending a New Year’s Eve party that required a dress.  We tend to celebrate a little more casually around here.  However, you never know what the future may hold, so I’m keeping this Party Dress DIY from Mark Montano in my file.

Party Dress DIY from Mark Montano

I tried to do a time capsule with my kids on the above mentioned New Year’s Eve of 1999.  I made up the sheets to fill out and put everything in a box – but never filled anything out.  At least, I don’t remember doing it.  I might get a big surprise one of these years.  Anyway, don’t be me – make this make this New Year’s Time Capsule from The Imagination Tree with your kids.  And remember where you put it.

New Year's Time Capsule for Kids from The Imagination Tree

Monsieur and Madame Champagne from Squirrel Picnic would be adorable on your New Year’s Eve buffet.  And no headache the next day!

Monsieur and Madame Champagne Crochet Pattern from Squirrel Picnic

I love little snacky food for New Year’s Eve, especially desserts.  These Hot Cocoa Mug Mini Desserts from Bird’s Party would be fun and leave you with room to sample other goodies.

Hot Cocoa Mug Mini Desserts from Birds Party

Whether we like it or not, the new year is when many of us start thinking about making some healthy changes to our eating habits.  These Salted Chocolate Dipped Mandarin Slices from Etc might be a good bridge to get there.

Salted Chocolate Dipped Mandarin Slices from Etc

And how beautiful would a plate be filled with those oranges and these Cherries Dipped in White Chocolate from Simple Provisions?

Cherries Dipped in White Chocolate from Simple Provisions

What’s a party without chips and dip?  Check out the festive way that Caramel Potatoes came up with to serve them.

If you have little ones, sometimes it’s tough keeping them entertained when they’re sugared up and they have that second wind because it’s WAY past their bedtime.  Consider helping them make these New Year Wishing Wands from Baby Centre – maybe before the party starts.

New Year Wishing Wand from Baby Centre

Another fun kid-idea is this Memory Scavenger Hunt from No Time for Flash Cards.  I kinda want to do this myself.  Maybe I can get my husband to hide them for me.

Photo Memory Scavenger Hunt from No Time for Flash Cards

If you’d like to send your guests home with a little something after the party, make some of these New Year Boxes from Mein Lila Park

New Year Box from Mein Lila Park

I don’t ordinarily link from my round-up here to another round-up, but B Lovely Events has so many great ideas for a Neon Glow in the Dark Party that I couldn’t resist.  This was compiled for a Sweet 16, but wouldn’t this be an amazing New Year’s Eve party?

Neon Glow in the Dark Party from B Lovely Events

Friday Favorites–New Year’s DIYs

2014.  I feel like we just went through the whole Y2K thing.  Yeah…14 years ago.  Let’s clink our glasses together and welcome another year of inspiration, creation and doing it ourselves.  And not blinking and finding out it’s 2020.

10 New Year's DIYs - Crafty Staci

If ever there was a night when kids should be allowed, even encouraged, to make lots of noise, it’s New Year’s Eve.  Help them along with these Paper Plate Shakers from The Centsible Life.

Paper Plate Shakers for New Years Eve from The Centsible Life

To make a New Year’s decoration that can be reused last year at Christmastime, try this banner from 504 Main.

Reversible Holiday Wish and New Years Banner from 504 Main

I love these fun, happy cookies from The Sweet Adventures of Sugar Belle.

Happy New Year Cookies from Sweet Sugar Belle

This Exploding Year Box from Glitter Adventure is amazing.  What a fantastic way to relive the year’s great memories!

Exploding Year Memory Box from Glitter Adventure 

There are several fun New Year’s ideas here from Fiskars, but I especially like the clock cupcake toppers.

New Years Eve Party Decor from Fiskars

Even if you indulge in a little nip or two for New Year’s, you’re bound to have some pint-sized guests, people who choose to abstain or designated drivers who all deserve something special too.  Keep them included in the festivities with these Perfect Pina Coladas from Over the Big Moon.

Perfect Pina Coladas from Over the Big Moon

Everyone is always making resolutions for the new year, but I love this DIY twist.  UCreate shares a Creative Bucket List printable.

Creative Bucket List from U Create

Creative food is a must to ring in the new year.  Check out this Cupcake Fondue from Pint Size Social.  Imagine the possibilities.

Cupcake Fondue from Pint Size Social

If cupcakes aren’t your thing, here’s some Chocolate Pop Rocks Rice Krispy Treats from Cupcake Project.

Chocolate Pop Rock Rice Krispie Treats from Cupcake Project

New Year’s Eve is the perfect time for some photos to remember the old year and ring in the new.  Add a little something special with these New Year Photo Props from I Heart Naptime.

New Year Photo Props from i heart naptime

Happy 2014!

New Year’s Eve Memory Page

When my daughter started college in the fall, she mentioned that she thought it would be fun to write down some of the things she’s thinking, feeling and doing right now so she can look at it again when she graduates to see how she’s changed.  That’s something I’ve always wished I would have done with the kids for the new year, so I decided it’s never too late.  I made up a sheet with different prompts they can fill out, then stash away for blackmail material later.  I mean, share with them when they’re older, mature young adults.

Here’s the printable (click image to download PDF):

These are the categories I used, and what I had in mind for each.  Of course, you can interpret them any way you’d like.

  • The upper left box is for a current photo
  • Listening – music
  • Watching – TV, movies
  • Reading – books, magazines
  • Loving – important people
  • Surfing – favorite websites or online activities
  • Creating – music, art, sports, writing, etc. -  I feel like this could be a broad category
  • Enjoying – hobbies, clubs, etc.
  • Eating – favorite foods and drinks
  • Waiting – future hopes and goals
  • Admiring – people influencing their lives
  • Achieving – notable accomplishments
  • Being – a brief self-description
  • Feeling – that one’s probably self-explanatory
  • Hoping – what they’re wishing for
  • Wearing – favorite clothes, shoes, etc.
  • Believing – what they believe in

You’ll notice most of the boxes are pretty small.  I thought about spreading this over a couple of pages, but realized I had a better chance of participation if it didn’t look like I was assigning winter break homework. 

Have a safe, happy New Year!

Friday Favorites–New Year’s Eve

2013 already?!?  It feels like just yesterday we were counting down to the year 2000 and hoping all of our computers didn’t crash.  We’ve been through much since then that we’d gladly trade for a few technology blips. As we approach the beginning of another new year, let’s remember the lost, forget our failures, celebrate our accomplishments and thank whomever your belief system leads you to for the opportunity to start fresh.

In my opinion, you need some noise to welcome the new year.  In fact, the smaller your kids are, the louder it should be.  Make your own Party Blowers from Martha Stewart for your little noise makers.


This New Year’s Eve Party from Ruffled is full of great ideas, but I particularly like these streamers with each guest’s wish for the new year clipped on.


Speaking of noise, how about popping a balloon every hour to count down?  Check out this fun idea from How Does She.


If you’re still looking for invitations for your party, Canadian Family has a cute idea for some made from confetti poppers.


Maybe a party isn’t in the cards because you and everyone you know have little people in the house that need to hit the sack early.  You can still share the holiday with this New Year’s Eve Kit from Inchmark.


Technically, this Sprinkled with Love party from Kojo Designs is meant for a birthday, but I think this theme would be really fun for a New Year’s Eve party, especially the confetti-filled balloons.


Nothing says “Party” like a hat, and these First-Night Hats from Spoonful say “PARTY!!!”.


There’s a Spanish tradition involving eating grapes at midnight, shared here by Noble Pig.  My daughter is a Spanish major, so when she hears about this I have a feeling I better have some grapes on the shopping list.


There aren’t many times in life you could get away with painting everything gold, but if New Year’s Eve isn’t one of them I don’t know what is.  This party from Hostess with the Mostess is not only gold, but Snow White themed.


Last but not least, when you wake up the next morning after all the festivities, you’re going to need a new calendar.  There are lots of printable options out there, but I really like the swirly design on this one from Creative Mamma.


Celebrate safely!

Friday Favorites–Cupcakes

My poor son had his wisdom teeth removed on Tuesday.  They hadn’t even come through his gums yet and were mostly sideways, so they had to put him under and dig all four of them out.  He looks a little chipmunkish and hasn’t progressed beyond soup, pudding and milkshakes.  New Year’s Eve is coming, and I was trying to come up with something he’d be able to eat that wasn’t chewy or crunchy.  The light bulb came on today – cupcakes.

Since this round-up is out of sympathy for my boy, most of these are based on his favorite things.  The hardest part will be deciding which to make for the weekend.

With eggnog season winding down, this Eggnog Cupcake from Annie’s Eats might be our choice  - while we still have some of it in the fridge.


This is how I know the boy is mine – he loves coconut just as much as I do.  He and I would have these Pina Colada Cupcakes from Glorious Treats all to ourselves.  Hmm…

IMG_6720e wo name

If a cupcake is based on a breakfast food, you can eat it for breakfast, right?  I wouldn’t mind testing that theory with these French Toast Cupcakes from Housewife in Training.


You can never go wrong with this combination, so there was no doubt these Peanut Butter Cup Cupcakes from My Baking Addiction had to make the list.


Whenever I’m in the mood to make cookies and I ask the house in general what kind they should be, my son always pipes up with “Molasses!”  He would love these Gingersnap Cupcakes from Picky Palate.


I can’t say I really care how these Cupcake Poppers from Betty Crocker taste.  They’re just pretty.


Just looking at these Lemonade Cupcakes from Cooking With Sugar makes my mouth water.


This is one of the flavors of pudding my son has been eating this week, so these Cookies and Cream Cupcakes from Confessions of a Cookbook Queen might have to wait a bit, but this recipe is still a keeper.


Root beer was my son’s favorite drink before I let him start having caffeine.  He still likes it, but not as much as he likes staying up all night playing video games once in a while.  He’d probably still like these Root Beer Cupcakes from Whatever Dee-Dee Wants on those nights he actually wants to sleep.

root beer cupcakes 1

Speaking of his new favorite drink, how about some Mountain Dew Cupcakes from All Things Cupcake?  There’s a New Year’s Eve cupcake if ever there was one!


I sooo want a cupcake now.  Time for a pre-holiday test run.  You know, for the sake of research.

Friday Favorites–New Year’s Eve

One more holiday-displaced Friday Favorites, then we’re back to actual Fridays!  I can’t believe we’re already staring into the face of 2011.  Here’s a few of my favorite ideas for saying goodbye to the old and ringing in the new.

On New Year’s Eve 1999, I tried to create time capsules to be opened at some later date.  Sadly, not only can I not remember whether I actually finished them, but if I did I don’t know where they are.  I think it’s time to try again with these Cookie Tin Time Capsules from Kaboose.

time capsule

When the clock strikes midnight, you gotta make some noise.  It’s a rule.  Thanks to this Popcorn Tin Noisemaker from Sassy Sites, you can do it in style.

popcorn tin noisemaker

While we’re on the subject of noise, here are some cute Noisemakers from Make and Takes, and you probably have everything you need to make them on hand.


My kids have always been champions at staying up late, and not just on New Year’s Eve.  There’s always a couple of hours between eating and the midnight chaos where they need to be kept busy.  I think this Big-As-Life Board Game from Craft would be the perfect thing.


It’s always about now that I start to look forward to putting away the Christmas stuff.  We leave it up until New Year’s Day, but sometimes I try to throw in something new, like this New Year’s Centerpiece from from Make it From Scratch.


These Quilted Numbers from The Iowa Farmer’s Wife are intended to be a child’s learning tool, but how fun would they be as New Year’s Eve decorations?


What’s a party without a hat?  These New Year’s Eve Party Hats from Felt So Cute would fill both the cute party gear and something to keep the kids busy requirements.


I don’t know why I like this New Year’s Marshmallow Ball from Simply Designing so much, but I do.  Don’t judge.


This Mini 2011 Calendar from Very Merry Vintage Style is adorable, and she offers a free printable for the tiny pages.


I love making New Year’s resolutions.  I love the sound they make when they deflate mid-January.  This New Year’s Resolution Cube from Chica and Jo might be just the thing to keep me on track.  At least I can fold it to a different one as they crash and burn.


Happy New Year…see you in 2011!