Tuesday, October 10, 2017

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Easy-to-Make Venus Flytrap & Snake-Wrapped Candy Halloween Centerpiece

Easy Venus Flytrap and Snakes Halloween Centerpiece  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
This easy Halloween centerpiece post has been sponsored by Oriental Trading Company, your Halloween headquarters.  All opinions expressed are my own.

October is a busy time of year for us, especially now that my children are older and are not all at the same school.  Between all the fall festivals, fundraising, and help with homework, I hardly have time to even think about Halloween.  That's why I was super-excited to come up with an easy Halloween centerpiece that both my children and trick-or-treaters would appreciate.

Putting together an easy display like this would be a fun Halloween activity to get the children involved in.  That's right!  This centerpiece is so easy to make that a child could probably do it.


How to Make a Halloween Serving Tray . . .

All you need is a basic serving tray and some printed Halloween-themed paper.  The tray can be black, woodtone, brown, orange, green, purple, or any other color that reminds you of fall.  Then measure the inside dimensions of the tray and fold the edges of the printed paper under itself to match the tray measurements.  Then place it inside the tray.  That's it!  I chose not to glue the paper down so that I can switch it out for different themed paper in the future.  The printed paper could be from scrapbook paper, wrapping paper, or a Halloween bag.  Use your imagination!  I used part of a paper Halloween table runner.
Turn an Everyday Serving Tray into a Halloween Tray  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

How to Make Snake-Wrapped Rock Candy . . . 

It's tough finding candy that everyone will like that is also safe for children with allergies.  I discovered that rock candy is gluten-free and dairy-free.  These rock candy lollipops paired with some cute fuzzy hair monster bookmarks are sure to be a big hit with trick-or-treaters, even ones with some dietary restrictions.
Fun Halloween Party Favor Ideas  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

Here comes the fun part!  To wrap bendable snakes around the rock candy, first coil them around your index finger.  When the snakes are in a coil shape, wrap them around the rock candy lollipops.  If you intend to display these treats in a cup or a pail, like I have, then be sure to keep the snakes towards the top of the lollipops.  This would also work well with hard candy sticks.
Snake-Wrapped Rock Candy for Halloween  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

How to Put Together Your Halloween Centerpiece . . .

I was lucky to find a set of 3 Halloween pails that I fell in love with.  Either little pails or flowerpots would work well in this case.  The first pail is for holding your decorative Venus Flytrap plant.
Venus Flytrap Decoration for Halloween  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

The other two pails are for holding your snake-wrapped rock candy lollipops.  Place the three pails in the Halloween serving tray you created.  Add a few snakes here and there, and you're done!
Decorative Spooky Halloween Pails  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

Like this Halloween decor idea? Pin It for later . . .
Easy to Make Venus Flytrap and Snakes Halloween Centerpiece  |  3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

What ideas do you have to delight trick-or-treaters?
Share them in a comment here.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Most 3G2S posts contain commission-yielding affiliate links. When you make a purchase after clicking a link, our family earns a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting our blog.

King Richard's Faire: Holiday Gift Guide for Dragon-Lovers, Music-Lovers & Renaissance Collectors

This post has been sponsored by King Richard's Faire.  All opinions expressed are my own.

After souvenir hunting at Carver, Massachusetts' King Richards Faire for the 6th year, I just had to share some of the unique finds I've come across.  If you wait until the holiday shopping season officially starts in November, then you'll miss out on these unique gift ideas because this wildly popular Renaissance faire closes for the season on October 22nd.


Gifts for Dragon-Lovers . . .

King Richard's Faire Holiday Gift Guide for Dragon Lovers | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Mardigan's Maile, who offers hand crafted chainmaile jewelry, also offers handpainted collectibles next door.  You are sure to find something for your dragon-lover here (young or old), as well as for fans of fairies and unicorns.

King Richard's Faire Holiday Gift Guide for Dragon Lovers | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Here Be Dragons has a wide variety of ready-to-frame fantasy art prints that feature dragons and more.  A perfect gift idea for a cult movie fan or MTG enthusiast.

According to Uncommon Adornments, dragons are a symbol of wealth, power, and protection. Dragons are just a small sampling of the 40+ designs they sell.  Each piece of jewelry can be customized with one of twenty different stones.  Each symbol and stone have a unique meaning.  Creating a custom combination would make the perfect gift for someone special.

King Richard's Faire Holiday Gift Guide for Dragon Lovers | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
The Imaginarium Galleries is where my youngest son chose his King Richard's Faire souvenir last year.  This shoppe offers cable-controlled dragon puppets in all different colors and sizes.


Gifts for Music-Lovers . . .

King Richard's Faire Holiday Gift Guide for Music Lovers | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Sunnyside Musical Creations is where my daughter chose her King Richard's Faire souvenir this year.  She actually saw these hand carved flutes last year, but had already chosen a portrait painting for her souvenir.  This year, she anxiously returned to try out the different flutes.  They were all unique in both look and sound, but ultimately, I convinced her she should select the flute that had the sound she loved the most.  The selection included regular flutes, recorders, pan flutes, and more.

King Richard's Faire Holiday Gift Guide for Music Lovers | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Mystic Rhythms sells exotic drums and other handmade instruments.  I was enamored by the drums because, not only are they musical instruments that are fun to play, they are also works of art.

King Richard's Faire Holiday Gift Guide for Music Lovers | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Magical Ocarinas . . . the name says it all.  This little clay flute is one of my son's favorite souvenirs from our past visits to King Richard's Faire.  The ocarinas are all unique and fairly easy to play, making them the perfect small gift or stocking stuffer for a child or an adult.


Gifts for Artisan-Made Collectors . . .

King Richard's Faire Holiday Gift Guide for Unique Artisan-Made Gifts  | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Ivy Rose Archery sells handcrafted archery bows and arrows.  Although those would make a great gift for anyone who is adventurous, what really caught my eye were the hand sculpted drinking horns. They would be a wonderful addition to a 3D art or drinkware collection.

King Richard's Faire Holiday Gift Guide for Unique Artisan-Made Gifts  | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Starfire Swords carries stage swords, daggers, and axes.  These pieces are crafted of real metal and are quite heavy.  Although the short swords and daggers I handled were not sharpened, they would most definitely look quite impressive on a wall display.

King Richard's Faire Holiday Gift Guide for Unique Artisan-Made Gifts  | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
Mahinda's Mad Dog Pottery offers handspun pottery vases, mugs, bowls, and more.  I thought the Baby Bear Mugs and the Big Papa Bear Mugs would make perfect gifts for father and son.

King Richard's Faire Holiday Gift Guide for Unique Artisan-Made Gifts  | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
We visit Staffs By Gust every year during our trip to King Richard's Faire, and every year my husband admires the craftsmanship of these walking staffs. No two are alike, and you can choose the height, color, and design to suit an individual's personality.  I'm so happy my husband finally treated himself to one this year.

Visit King Richard's Faire by October 22nd to start your holiday shopping early with over 80 different Artisans of the Realm!

Which favorite find from King Richard's Faire would you add to this gift guide?
Tell us in a comment here.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Most 3G2S posts contain commission-yielding affiliate links. When you make a purchase after clicking a link, our family earns a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting our blog.

King Richard's Faire 2017: Old & New Favorites

King Richard's Faire - Joust to the Death | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires
We received passes for our family to attend King Richard's Faire 2017.  All opinions expressed are my own.

This was our 6th year returning to King Richard's Faire, a favorite tradition for our family, located in Carver, Massachusetts.  Through the years, we've come to accept that we will never be able to see everything this Renaissance faire has to offer in one visit.  Take a look at which favorites we just could not miss this year, and which new favorites we discovered . . .

Our Favorite Attractions at King Richard's Faire:

JACQUES ZE WHIPPER: He's been one of my family's favorites since our very first visit to King Richard's Faire.  Now, 6 years later, I think my oldest is starting to get some of Jacques' jokes.  My younger son dressed up like Jacques Ze Whipper last year, and was thrilled to death that the performer remembered him this year.
King Richard's Faire - Jacques Ze Whipper | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

King Richard's Faire - Jacques Ze Whipper's Flaming Whip | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

GREAT CATS OF THE WORLD SHOW: We missed this show last year, so we had to make sure we caught it this year.  We are a family of animal-lovers, my daughter especially.  She loves seeing all the great cats and how they share some similar behaviors with our own beloved cat.
King Richard's Faire - Great Cats of the World | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

M'LADY'S SHADY MAZE: Going through this maze and down the slide is a MUST for my children.  Some years, they even insist on going through multiple times.  I have a feeling it will still be so when they are all teenagers.  After all, it's tradition!  This year, we were able to enjoy part of the faire with good friends who have a 5 year old.  It was wonderful seeing the faire through his young eyes.  I bet if you asked him, he would say his favorite things about the faire were this slide and the kettle corn.
A post shared by Karen Coutu (@karen3g2s) on

New Favorites Discovered at King Richard's Faire:

KETTLE CORN: Speaking of kettle corn, we bought a bag for the first time ever this year.  Oh my goodness!  Was it delicious!!  One large bag was enough to share with family and friends for nearly the whole day.  This is going to be our first stop next year.

PIRATE SHIPS RIDE: This ride is not new to my children, however, they used to complain that it hurt their hands to pull on the ropes to make the ship swing to and fro.  Now that they are older, it's like a brand new ride to them.  They were able to ride with their friends, even the little 5 year old, without having a grown up along to power the ship for them.
King Richard's Faire - Pirate Ships Ride | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

SNORKEL THE TRAINED PIG!: As previously mentioned, we are a family of animal-lovers.  This addition to the King Richard's Faire line-up is a new favorite of ours, as Snorkel quickly won our hearts.  The husband/wife duo, Rick and Jan, offered an entertaining juggling act in addition to this charming pig showing the audience what he can do.  If you want to catch Snorkel at King Richard's Faire 2017, he will only be there this year through September 24th.
King Richard's Faire - Snorkel the Trained Pig | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

King Richard's Faire - Snorkel the Trained Dancing Pig | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

JOUST TO THE DEATH:  The joust at King Richard's Faire was not new to us, but this year is the first time our children were not too tired to stay for the last joust of the day, the 'Joust to the Death.'  If you can only catch one joust during your visit to the Faire, the 5pm joust is the one to watch.  The crowds were cheering enthusiastically for their brave knights as they waited to see which would be the last knight standing and the one to wake the sleeping princess.
King Richard's Faire - Four Knights at the Joust | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

King Richard's Faire - The Joust | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

King Richard's Faire - The 5pm Joust to the Death | 3 Garnets & 2 Sapphires

Which attractions at King Richard's Faire are your family's favorites?
Tell us in a comment here.

Did you know you can buy your tickets online to King Richard's Faire and have them emailed to you?  Tickets can be used any weekend through October 22nd, so you can adjust your plans based on the weather.  Admission for children 3 and under is free, and group discounts are available.