Sunday, December 10, 2017

Clear Plastic Ornaments, I was so wrong about you

Every now and then I see a pin that was MADE for me.  Like I must be the EXACT target audience they were going for.  This garland tutorial by Handmade Charlotte was one of those pins.  Like I literally CAN. NOT. deal with how fabulous this idea is.

The craft snob in me has been pretty hard on clear plastic ornaments in the past.  Like they’re clear and plastic... and they look like it.  Yah, no thanks.  But I’m not about to hand my kiddos giant glass ornaments for this project so plastic it is.  The second I dropped some paint in, I squealed...eeeek! ALL THE HEART EYES!  This is the best idea ever!  They maintain their gloss you can add any fun color and they legit are coming out looking like they’re straight out of my dream world: the Land of Nod catalog.  For reals, go buy ALL the clear plastic ornaments :P  They’re such a win!  

Troubleshooting:  I didn’t read the tutorial before starting :(  If you have any crafty, or cook-y inclinations, you might be like me and suffer from a poorly misinformed over confidence.  Looks at picture: needs no instructions.  I got this.  So, oops, I didn’t read about adding a little water to the paint to thin it out, nor her warning about not adding too much.  So mine are here two days later with globs of thick, wet paint still sitting in the bottom...These babies may never dry!  Read her instructions, it’s worth it!

For Shizzle, you could stop after adding color to these amazing clear plastic ornaments and you would not be without some confidence boosting I made these! Results.  But the faces and the pipe cleaner, next level cuteness!  Here are some of our guys:

I decided to make mine into a wreath because my fabulous yarn ball wreath died somewhere between carelessly tossing it in the garage last January thinking I would organize my Christmas stuff and pulling it out from under a tote of shred and recycle precariously balanced in a pile this November.  Oh weird, one more thing I didn’t do that I was certain I would.  

At any rate, I’m not even mad because check her out:

Thank you a zillion times over Handmade Charlotte!  Girlfriend KNOWS what’s up!

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Humbly Returning to the Blog World, Because: Christmas :)

That was the title of a blog series I wrote in October of 2013.  

I had a 3 and 5 year old and thought I had it all figured out:  Do ALL the Christmas work in October, then sit back and chillax/enjoy the holidays through December.


Almost comical. While I will say, I had some pretty good ideas, there isn’t a mom out there getting that stuff done 2 months in advance….is there??? at least not in my circle!

I saw an article recently about how women make Christmas happen.  Ain't that the truth?  I’m not trying to play that card, I am just pretty sure we don’t have QUITE as many dad’s fretting the night before December 1st that the Advent Calendar isn’t ready....I think.

The thing is, making Christmas happen with all it’s magic and traditions we hope our kids will look back on fondly when they’re grown is just this: super. hard.

This blog, or maybe just writing in general, has been calling for me to come back as of late but I felt like I needed to clear the air before we start:  this isn’t a perfect mommy blog where everything magically falls in place 2 months in advance, and I’m sorry if I ever tried to present myself as that type of person. Oh wow, those of you that know me know that I am the polar opposite of that person.  If we’re being real, this is the running around with my hair on fire hoping to accomplish maybe half of what I've set out to do in the hopes that I can make my kids smile today, just today, because I can't even think about all the shenanigans I'm already behind on for tomorrow- type of blog.  

I know we’re all operating at different levels of having our sh*t together, but I think we’ve all got similar goals and really similar outcomes and I’m hoping this blog can inspire you WHILE making you feel like you’ve got a comrade in the trenches with ya.  Godspeed, holiday-time mom, you got this!

Friday, November 20, 2015

Autumn Owl Craft for Kids

Hi friends!  I'm just going to swoop past the fact that this is my first blog post in almost a year and a half and dive right back into some seasonal crafty fun, sound good? I think so too!
As a homeschooling mom (oh yah, that happened), I am often choosing what crafts and projects I want my kiddos to do. While we all know I LOVE me some glitter, glue, and construction paper, I have been trying to be more mindful of the longevity of these projects and try to include some cool ones that really can stand the tests of time (storage and style wise).  So when I was planning a fall party for my kids and their friends, I tried to think of something that could become a fun fall decoration rather than end up in next week's recycle bin (don't gasp, we're all guilty here).  

To make these owls you need:

  • Round Plywood Circles (if you have awesome log cuts, this would be way cooler, I just couldn't track them down in the size and price I wanted, the one's I got were in 6 packs from Hobby Lobby for less than $5)
  • Wood Stain
  • Cheap Forks (you can find 4 packs for less than a dollar at Walmart and I'm betting the Dollar Store)
  • Bottle Caps (I got mine in the scrapbooking embellisment section at the craft store--only 1 shown because all extras were quickly used up for doll plates and what not)
  • Coin sized wood slices (if you have access to some sticks and branches and a miter saw you can totally diy these . . . and take a moment to soak in the awesomeness that comes with using the power tool sans assistance)
  • 4" Wood slice cut down the middle (to make wings)
  • Strong Glue (E6000 Craft Adhesive is my fave but use caution with kids)
  • Nuts would have made cooler eyes but we just sharpied
  • Twine

Pre-kid Prep:

  1. Cut handles off forks and file down any sharp or jagged edges (i used gardening clippers, those cheap forks are pretty flimsy and cut easily).  I also painted mine with a hammered steel spray paint just out of color preference.
  2. Stain your plywood circle bodies leaving enough time to dry.
  3. Cut coin slices and wing halves.
Kid Assembly:
  1. Each owl needs 1 body circle, 2 fork feet, 2 bottle cap eyes, 2 nut eyeballs, 2 wood slice halves, some twine for hanging, and a handful of wood slice coins.
  2. Assist kiddos as they layout their owl and glue on their pieces.  
  3. Lay flat and allow to dry before attaching twine as a hanger on back (i used staples, but hot glue would probably do the trick too).

My littles and their buddies seemed to enjoy this craft and I think I'll get a kick out of hanging these up for many an Autumn to come!  Now bring on the Christmas :)

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!


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