My pathetic Halloween craft FAIL

OK – I admit it: I have a deep fear of crafts and avoid doing them like the plague.

I blame Martha! As a bride-to-be I literally spent hours drooling over her beautifully photographed handiwork. In the two days I took off from work before my wedding I stupidly attempted to replicate one of her projects: scalloped rice paper “envelopes” for the service programs tied to the backs of chairs with silk ribbon. The results: absolutely craptacular. A total waste of time and money. Never again, I promised myself.

But then I had kids. And suddenly, out of nowhere, I am struck by the urge to craft every holiday. Though I still secretly wish I could skip all the work and just buy goodies hand-crafted-by-someone-else, it feels like I’d be cheating my guys out of important childhood memories if I did.

So I buck up and get back on the horse.

And sometimes…(though certainly not every time)…I am rewarded with a hit.

I thought for SURE I’d found a hit when I came across these adorable chocolate-covered marshmallow spider treats. My son is obsessed with both spiders and marshmallows, so I figured he’d go ga-ga for these. And really, how hard could it be to stick some chow mein “legs” on marshmallows, melt some chocolate chips, drizzle it over the “spiders,” and add M&M eyes?

Apparently the answer is VERY.

I’m not sure what Nestle is putting in its semi-sweet chocolate chips these days, but I dutifully followed the melting directions on the back of their package. Well…ok…so I got a little distracted by the conference call I was on at the same time and forgot to take them out of the microwave and stir them every 30 seconds. Not a good idea people! I had to jump off my call in a hurry when the fire alarms started shrieking – smoke was pouring out of the microwave at an alarming rate. Apparently that interim stirring thing is very important. Thank heavens I had an extra box of Baking Soda on hand to soak up the smoky stench. Our microwave is still recovering!

On take 2, I attempted to melt the chips in a pan on the stove with a teaspoon of butter, but the chocolate never got runny enough. It just glumped and clumped together in a most unappealing – and more importantly – unusable way.

On take 3, I used baker’s chocolate (semi-sweet). It melted beautifully, I put it in a baggie and dribbled it over the marshmallows. I used a spatula to smooth out the chocolate, added two M&M eyes – and voila, the creatures were finished.

The squeals of delight from the boys were enough to make my heart leap.

Then they tasted them…and begged me for some Oreos.

What about you, have you ever had any craft FAILs like me? What’s your greatest craft disappointment?

(ps – it’s not all doom and craft gloom – tune in next Monday for a non-tricky craft that turned out to be a real treat!)