Sunday, June 8, 2014

DIY End of the Year Teacher Appreciation Gift Baskets

You guys, I must confess I am the world's biggest flake.  I'm the worst at returning calls/texts/messages.  I'm at minimum 15 minutes late to EVERYTHING.  I still have a birthday present for my closest friend and her birthday is in February. . . I'm just the worst!  But I really really want to be that friend, auntie, mom, student parent that remembers dates and occasions with cute packages and cards in the mail, arrives early, creates cute gifts for the fabulous teachers at the end of the year, etc.  I managed this ONE thing this year, I'll keep working hard on the rest :)

Truth is, my girls both had incredible teachers this year (I wonder if I'll just think this every year).  They both were just thrilled to walk through those doors and spend day after day with them.  And as their mommy that struggled to drive away from them day after day, that has meant the world.  

Here are the cute and pretty easy gift baskets we put together for my daughters' teachers to show some appreciation and send them off on their summer vacations!  

All you need is:

  • a cardboard 6-pack holder You can get six packs of coke, or 3 different kinds of Crush sodas at Walmart which you could, in-turn, use for your gifts, I happened to have a secret stash of them so I bought my drinks separately
  • 2 Glass bottle drinks how fabulously cute are those lemonades?! I found them for $1.68 at walmart and they came in several flavors
  • flip-flops, nail polish and gum that match the magazine color scheme because color coordination just looks good!
  • Fancy candy bar I fell in love with these "hello my name is ___" bars by Lindt, totally cute!
  • Scrapbook paper and double sided tape.
Before filling, cut your scrapbook paper to fit the front of the carrier and attach with double sided tape.  You could get really fancy here with labels, stickers, cricut or sihlouette cut-outs . . . I wish I had but I left mine plain and later attached a cute gift tag by whole punching directly into the corner in front of one of the bottles.  Basically whatever you do at this step will be cute and fabulous!

Assembly is just a matter of carefully tearing the dividers in the back rows so you can fit your magazine and flip flops across the three slots and then arranging as you see fit.  I did use some crumpled up tissue paper in front of the candy bar to make the nail polish stick out.  

Here's how they turned out all assembled:

Now, chances are your little probably has some kind of regular support staff that you may also want to acknowledge with a little gift.  Using just two cute elements I through together these smaller gifts for the teachers' aids and helpers in their classrooms:

Friday, June 6, 2014

Easy $3 School's Out Welcome to Summer Decorations

Wow this year went by fast!  Yesterday was our last day of school!  After both  preschool and Kindergarten graduations, 2 field trips, and one birthday celebration at school, (all this week) this mama is pretty good and ready for some down time.  But my day was already full of end of year parties, really competitive gymnastics sign ups, and the second to last T-ball game so I thought, you're already crazy busy today, go all out!  

Here's a quick way you can deck out your entry way for your littles to come home to on their last day of school (and you can do it in between your errands)!  Little cost and effort and big results (my fave combination!)

What you need:
Sunshine decorations (Found these in the classroom supplies section of the dollar store, pack of 10)
Yellow Streamers (our dollar store has 2 packs and I ended up using a little more than 1, but if you only had one you could just do shorter pieces, because it was definitely close)
Sidewalk Chalk
Painters tape and double sided tape (I already had these so I'm not including them in the whole $3 total :P)

Put a piece of painters tape across the top of your door jam just lightly enough to stay up.  Then starting at one side, place the edge of the streamer just under the bottom of the tape and press down then let the streamers drop and cut off the bottom then repeat.  I like the look of varied lengths, and the tape held well once I pressed down each piece.  

Once you have your door curtained off you can add your sunshines at random heights and strips using double-sided tape.  Again, this tape held really well and the suns didn't add enough weight to pull down the streamers.

Lastly, grab your sidewalk chalk and draw some suns, palm trees, smiles, anything you want welcoming your kiddos to their summer vacation!! 

My girls were pretty excited to see this as they got out of the car! And bonus for this photo-happy mama, that streamer curtain makes a pretty cute backdrop for some summery pictures :)

Now, this is pretty fun all on its own, but if you're at the dollar store anyways you might want to make some little summer gifty bags of sand toys, buckets, bubbles, silly string, etc.  I actually found some pretty fabulous pineapple sunglasses that definitely had to happen!  This ups the total beyond $3 but not by much :)

I'm a little off my game when it comes to creating a summer bucket list or calendar plan like I have in years past but I'm still super stoked for all the things we'll surely do!!  

If your looking for some ideas, here are two big lists I compiled to get your brainstorm going:
 101 Things to do This Summer

Enjoy the Sunshine!!!

I'm linking up with the Link Party Palooza, check it out!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Last Minute Easter Banner using my Sihlouette Cameo

Hello there, little loves!  

Can you believe it's already Easter weekend??  Seriously though, folks, why is this year in super-speed mode?!  At any rate, here I am with only a couple days to spare and realizing I'm not really accomplishing the whole being that "decorates for every holiday" mom that I had always hoped to be.  Lucky for me, my darling husband got me a Silhouette Cameo for Christmas.  So last night I whipped up an adorable little bunny bunting banner with my girlies.  Any basic bunny shape would do the trick here, but having a Cricut or a Silhouette sure does make it easy :)

I cut out 12 of the design "Bunny Doll" by Sophie Gallow.  

I did not use the eyes, nose, or inner ears, just the body.  I sized them up to fit 2 per one Letter sized paper.  Then my littlest chickadee and I applied self-adhesive googly eyes and drew in noses and smiles (and eyelashes just because!).  Lastly, I glued simple text (size 144 font) to spell out Happy Easter (with a blank in between) on the tummies of the bunnies.

The easiest-total cheater move-of the project is that we literally just bent over all their ears and hung them across a fun confetti yarn!  You could do this with any bunny!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

sweet paper organizer station update

You guys, I am slow as a sloth when it comes to this whole new year new me thing (because we're almost through February, right?!?!?!).  However, I'm still truckin' a long little by little towards my goals of an organized better functioning home.  And naturally, part of organizing means buying fun new organizers :)  haha right?!?!  right, totally does.  

Here's a fun way you can update some already cute mail/paper station organizers from Target!

What you need:
Painters Tape
Xacto knife and/or precision tiny scissors
Spray paint (I used the gold metallics from Rustoleum, but only after about 3 weeks and one marathon send-a-million-picture-texts-to-the-bestie session of trying to narrow down which color[s] to use)

The real time comes from taping off the letters. I wanted to leave them their cool brushed steel gray so it had to be done. Because I wanted all of the basket to be gold, I had to painstakingly cut away little portions of the tape using an xacto knife and some tiny sharp scissors.  This took me about 30-40 minutes, but felt longer :P  

Once you're satisfied with your taping all you have to do is get your spray paint on :) 

And here they are in my kitchen all hung and ready to roll! 

PS did you notice that adorable key hook update?  That mini project took me all of 10 minutes (plus the agonizing time to let the paint dry).  You can easily disassemble the hooks from the base to paint!  They're super cheap and easy to find at any store!  

My next installment to this project will be a duo of cute shred and recycle bins to sit on the floor below!

Monday, February 17, 2014

so, are you watching The Mindy Project?

my honey and i are marathoning through season one of The Mindy Project these last couple of nights (it was randomly only $9.99 for the whole season on Amazon Prime the other night, not it is like $34.99 . . . not sure what was going on there but lucky us!!).  Anyways, it's fabulous!  We've both burst out laughing at some point in almost every episode.  If you're looking for a funny, lighthearted show to get hooked on, this is probably it :)

wrapping up valentines day

So, crazytown that we're already more than half-way through February!  If time could just slow down a smidge, that'd be great, thanks!  Anyways, slacker me is just now getting to sharing my valentines-y crafties here on the blog!  So BTW, Happy Valentine's Day!  

Y chose a pinterest inspired healthy snack robot to make her class.  They turned out adorable!  Thanks again, pinterest!  

A got to make valentines for her preschool class, and she chose these adorable fox treat holders compliments of my Silhouette.  They of course, had to be lavender.
As a silhouette newbie I couldn't resist adding her name as a cutout to the tail . . . mostly just because I could.  I felt like the addition of googly eyes really brought these little guys to life!  She was so dutiful while helping me glue all the pieces together and was VERY proud passing them out! 

I got my valentine crafty on by making a fun new batch of "I love you like _______"/"I love you more than _______" blocks.  I'm sorta thrilled with how they turned out! 

Magazine and Markers Art

So happy President's Day!  We've got big sis home from school today and even though the sun is shining, it is ridiculously windy out, so we've been inside all day.
As of late, I've had too high-yielding little artists, so these chicas would be happy to fall into their regular routine of mass producing marker/crayon pictures.  But today we jazzed it up a little by mixing in some magazine cut-outs as a jumping-off point and WOWZA did that create a thrill (I'm trying to soak in these moments where they're so easy to impress)!!  So file this away under rainy day or time-filler activities, mamas.  All you need are a couple fun faces/heads cut out from magazines and let your littles do the rest!

My girls literally spent hours creating these master-pieces and I've been inspired to keep a small stash of pre-cut heads/pics for them to access any time they need a little artsy inspiration!


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