DIY Disaster! What NOT To Do When Making Jello Worms!

halloween food

Ohhhh! I saw so many pictures of worms made out of gelatin on Pinterest. They all looked really easy to make! Feeling inspired I bought the ingredients to whip up a batch. I used a recipe from Instructables, Bowl of Worms, Anyone?   

All in all, the worms turned out pretty well but please see my notes and learn from my mistakes!

Ingredientsjello and cream with green food coloring

1 6 oz package of Raspberry Jell
1 packet of unflavored gelatin
¾ cup of heavy whipping cream
3 cups boiling water
15 + drops of green food coloring
50 flexible straws+/-
Tall container (milk carton, or plastic drink container, maybe a tall beer mug)

  1. Mix raspberry and unflavored Jello/gelatin together. Add boiling water-keep stirring!

2.THIS IS IMPORTANT! Let the mixture cool to at least lukewarm, then

See how the jello and cream has separated?

See how the jello and cream has separated?

add the whipping cream and the food coloring (I used a little more than half of a container of food coloring-add until mixture the color of a worm). I think I did not wait long enough for mixture to cool and it separated after cooling.

3.Gather straws. THIS IS REALLY IMPORTANT: pull on the straws so the

Top straw is correct!

Top straw is correct BUT put the flex end bottom-side down so the Jello reaches it!

flexed part is straightened out (see photo). I did not understand what was meant by,”don’t forget to flex them out” and my worms were missing the nice segmented section found on most earth worms. Drat!

jello worms straws in container4. Put the straws in a container so they all stay upright. I used an empty sports beverage container. A milk carton would work. If your container is too big, use a rubber band to keep straws upright. NOTE: There will be lots of gelatin mixture that doesn’t make it in to the straws. My instructions called for 100 straws. I used about half and the mixture still only filled the straws about 2/3 full. So don’t stress if your container only fits 30 straws.

5. Add gelatin mixture to the straws. I used a spouted measuring bowl. This can get messy! I put newspaper down on my counter and covered it with a dish towel. Food coloring can stain!

6.Put the straws and container in the refrigerator to set. Should be ready in a hour or so. Don’t rush this important step. Test one before taking all the straws out!

Removing worms from straws

    7. Removing the worms from the straws was difficult at first. The instructions I was following said, You can roll a rolling pin over the straws and squeeze them out or you can hold the straws over warm water. The worms will slip right out. Eh…what worked for me was to put the container that held the straws in warm water. I removed one straw at a time and held the top in one hand, squeezed and pulled down with the other (see photo)

Additional notes: I noticed that lots of Jello wormsthe food coloring ended up on the bottom of my bowl. Maybe I should have used a whisk to blend it. The gelatin and the cream separated as the worms cooled. I think whisking might help with this…and I didn’t wait until the mixture was lukewarm before I poured in to the straws. Next time!

So let me know how your Jello worms turn out!!!!

Mirth in a Box sells funny and unusual care packages and gift boxes.

Many thanks to Patty Eilenberg for humoring me as I made these!

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Vampire Jokes-Biting Humor

  • Why does the vampire need cold medicine? For his coffin!count dracula
  • How does a polite vampire greet someone? “Pleased to eat you!”
  • What do overweight vampires drink? Blood Lite!
  • Why don’t vampires like mosquitoes?
Too much competition!
  • What has webbed feet, feathers, fangs and goes quack-quack? Count Duckula!
  • How are vampires like false teeth? They both come out at night!
  • What are a vampire’s favorite snacks?
Adam’s apples and neck-tarines!
  • Why did the vampire quit the baseball team? The coach would only let him be BAT boy!

Mirth in a Box sells fun and unusual care packages!

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Candy is Dandy! 5 Great Quotes About Candy

As Halloween gets closer my sweet tooth gets sharper!halloween candy

  • A lot of people like lollipops.  I don’t like lollipops. To me, a lollipop is hard candy plus garbage. I don’t need a handle. Just give me the candy. Demetri Martin
  • I want to get a vending machine, with fun sized candy bars, and the glass in front is a magnifying glass. You’ll be mad, but it will be too late. Mitch Hedberg
  • Sometimes I think that the one thing I love most about being an adult is the right to Ryan Gosling buy candy whenever and wherever I want. Ryan Gosling (just one more thing to love about Ryan Gosling-he’s profound!)
  • My therapist told me the way to achieve true inner peace is to finish what I start. So far today, I have finished 2 bags of M&M’s and a chocolate cake. I feel better already. Dave Barry
  • Candy is dandy but liquor is quicker. Ogden Nash

Mirth in a Box sells the best college care packages around. Have a student with a sweet tooth? We can help with that!

Thank you, Tony Shek, for the Ryan Gosling photo!

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Are You Invisible? Three Easy Tests

Liz and Ghost

Never Invisible

A helpful and timely article culled from a long dead blog, Microanalysis.

Are You Invisible?
In today’s fast-paced modern world, it can sometimes be difficult to know whether or not you are invisible. Perhaps you are boring, so people seem not to notice you. Perhaps you think the pane of glass in front of you is a mirror, but it is not. Perhaps it is, and you are a vampire. Not knowing the status of one’s own visibility can be a real headache, so the editorial staff here at Microanalysis has compiled three easy tests for determining whether or not you are invisible.

  • Find a mirror. Verify that you are indeed looking into a mirror by
    Invisible person next to potted plant

    Invisible person next to potted plant

    fetching a rubber duck bath toy and placing it in front of the mirror. If another rubber duck appears, then yes, you are looking at a mirror. If no rubber duck appears, then you are most likely looking at a pane of glass or maybe even a one-way mirror. Whatever it is, smash it with a rock, for it will not help you determine whether or not you are invisible. Once you have found a bonafide mirror, step in front of it. Stick out your tongue but do not cross your eyes. If you can see yourself sticking your tongue out, you are not invisible (but as noted above, you may still be a vampire).

  • Get a flashlight. Now shut off all the lights in your room. Turn on the flashlight and try to make shadow puppets. Specifically, attempt to make a dog, then a duck, then an angry man with a large nose. If you are invisible, the light from the flashlight will pass straight through you and you won’t be able to make any shadow puppets at all. If you can’t make the dog or the duck shadow puppets but are still casting a shadow, you aren’t invisible but you probably suffer from some sort of manual cooridnation disorder. If you are able to make the angry man with a large nose, congratulations. That is a difficult shadow puppet to make.
  • Look at something. Can you see it? If so, you are not invisible. If you were invisible, then light would pass straight through your eyes, striking nary a rod nor cone on its way through you. Your visual cortex would receive no input, and you wouldn’t see anything. It’s that simple. In fact, being able to read this sentence is pretty conclusive evidence that you are not invisible, so let’s put that matter to rest, ok?
orange gloves

Invisible person wearing gloves

If You Are Invisible
Let’s face it- some people are invisible, and that’s okay. That having been said, life can be difficult if you are invisible, as none of your friends can see you. Upon hearing your voice or seeing you pick up your favorite ping-pong paddle, folks may think that you are a ghost and run screaming out of the room. Here are some easy ways to increase your visibility:

  • Only travel in areas of heavy fog or steam
  • Strap bicycle horns to your feet
  • Wear lots of really heavy makeup
  • Sing loudly and frequently about what you are doing
  • Always wear a trenchcoat, along with a hat, sunglasses, and full bandaging on your face

Whatever you do, do not wear a sheet over your head with holes cut in it. This will only increase the chances of people thinking you are a ghost.

Are You Still Confused?
Hopefully this article has been helpful to you. If you are still uncertain as to whether or not you are invisible, it may be necessary to seek professional help. Most doctors will be able to tell at a glance whether or not you are invisible. Dentists will be able to tell you only if your teeth are invisible, as that is their specialty. If you are still uncertain whether or not you are invisible, freak out. If a friend, relative, or stranger approaches you and calms you down, then they can see you, and you are not invisible. If a friend, relative, or stranger becomes alarmed because of the disembodied shouting fit that they cannot locate, you are invisible, and can therefore stop freaking out.

Regardless of your visibility, the world is your oyster. Visible and invisible people alike can ride tandem bicycles, paddle kayaks, and tie knots in string. Do not let your visibility hamper your active lifestyle or dampen your sunny position- you’re beautiful just the way you are. Even if nobody can see you.

Pulled from the past writing of Alex Berg. Thanks, Alex!

Mirth in a Box , an equal opportunity website, sells care packages for both the visible and the non visible! Really!

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Fangs for the Bat Jokes!

Stick these in your belfry:bat sleeping in a tree

  • What do you call a little bat? A battle!
  • What is the best way to hold a bat? By its handle!
  • What did one bat say to the other bat? Let’s go out for a bite and then hang out together!
  • What do bats sing when it is raining? “Raindrops Keep Falling on my Feet”!
  • What did the mother bat say to her naughty son? You bat boy!
  • Why did the vampire bat need mouthwash? He had bat breath!
  • What did the bat say to the vampire? You suck!
  • What happens when two vampire bats meet? Love at first bite!

Mirth in a Box sells funny and unusual care packages for college students, campers and anyone who needs a laugh!

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Batter Up! Baseball Quotes

  • If it weren’t for baseball, many kids wouldn’t know what a millionaire baseball pitcherlooked like. Phyllis Diller
  • Baseball is ninety percent mental and the other half is physical. Yogi Berra
  • Now there are three things you can do in a baseball game: You can win or you can lose or it can rain. Casey Stengel
  • I’d walk through hell in a gasoline suit to play baseball. Pete Rose
  • There are three types of baseball players: Those who make it happen, those who watch it happen and those who wonder what happens. Tommy Lasorda
  • Baseball is like a poker game. Nobody wants to quit when he’s losing; nobody wants you to quit when you’re ahead. Jackie Robinson
  • Cricket is basically baseball on Valium. Robin Williams
  • If it wasn’t for baseball I’d either been in the penitentiary or the cemetery. Babe Ruth

 Mirth in a Box sells the best college care packages!

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Newly Discovered: Christopher Columbus’s Packing List

Christopher Columbus

Recently a weathered document was uncovered at a tag sale in Spain.

Scholars have concluded that it might be one of Christopher Columbus’s transatlantic packing lists.

Since Columbus made 4 voyages across the Atlantic Ocean, we thought this list might provide some insight on what to pack for a long cruise. We noticed that CC relied on several versatile pieces in lightweight, wrinkle-resistant fabrics.

Here’s the list in its entirety:Damn Google Maps!

  • Captain’s log
  • Quill and ink
  • 2 cotton doublets
  • 4 pair tropical weight breeches
  • Mesh codpiece
  • Reversible jerkin
  • Waterproof surcoatvintage suitcases
  • Panama tasseled cap
  • Swimming garment
  • 6 sets of silk underpantaloons
  • Khaki shorts
  • Rubber boat shoes
  • GPS (Magellan RoadMate 6230) or Garmin 1492
  • “Berlitz Chinese Phrase Book”
  • “Asia on 3 Ducats a Day”
  • Barrel of Mount Gay Rum

funny luggage tagMirth in a Box sells fun and unusual care packages for anyone living in the New World! We even sell fun luggage tags!

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Math Jokes Add Up to Funny!

Really! These made me laugh:Wikiversity-banner

  • What did one math book say to the other math book? I got more problems than you.
  • Why was 10 afraid of 7? Because 7 ate 9!
  • What did 0 say to 8? Nice belt!
  • Why was the student kicked out of math class? Too many Mathinfractions!
  • Why did the student begin to like math class? She saw that the decimals had a point!
  • How did the teacher explain mathematics to her students? She summed it up!
  • What religion are most mathematicians? Sum worshippers!
  • Why can’t you miss too many math classes? It starts adding up!
  • What is a math teacher’s favorite dessert?  Pi!
  • How many pastry chefs does it take to make a pie? 3.14!

Mirth in a Box sells the best college care packages!

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Melt in Your Mouth Chocolate Quotes


  • Strength is the capacity to break a chocolate bar into four pieces with your bare hands – and then eat just one of the pieces . Judith Viorst
  • All I really need is love, but a little candy now and then doesn’t hurt! Lucy Van Pelt
  • I’d give up chocolate, but I’m no quitter! Anonymous
  • Life is like a box of chocolates – you never know what you’re going to get.  Forrest Gump
  • Don’t wreck a sublime chocolate experience by feeling guilty. Lora Brody
  • Money may talk, but chocolate sings. Anonymous
  • If there’s no chocolate in Heaven, I’m not going. Jane Seabrook

Do you know which chocolate bar was named ‘Top Chocolate Bar’ by The International Chocolate Salon? Get the scoop here: Vancouver-made Chocolate Bar named Best in the World.


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The Ghosts of Varenna, Italy

Great Ceasar’s Ghost! OK. Not really, but at the Castello di Vezio in Castello di Vezio, lake comòVarenna, Italy there are almost a dozen life-sized ghosts hanging around the castle. These ghosts are made every spring from gauze covered with a chalk mixture (hey, that’s what the brochure said!). Then the cloth is draped over cooperative tourists who stay very still for about 20 minutes. The dried casting is carefully removed and placed somewhere in the castle ruins. So great Aunt Silvia’s ghost!

Castle ghostsI really wanted to know how to make these creepy castings but could not find a ‘recipe’ anywhere (Yes, yes. I used Google!). I did find these 2 How-To’s:

1. From Bon Ami a liquid starch and cheese cloth ghost. For decoration only.

2. The DIY Network has nicely detailed instructions on how to make lifelike ghosts using chicken wire, mannequin heads and fabric.

Sadly, neither of these use tourists for the form but where would I find tourists in Fairfield, CT anyway?

Anyone out there know how to make chalk and cheese cloth ghosts?

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