Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wonderful Wednesday...Christmas Memories Journal

You should see the crafting madness in my house right now! I literally have 20 projects going on at the same time. And, we have had really foggy weather today, which is not helping my need to get things painted before Saturday.

I have a quick project today to do with your kids. It is a Christmas Memories Journal. It is really easy to make and will hold treasured memories for years to come. Oh, and did I mention that this project is CHEAP?

Here is what we used:

Glue, paper, red stamp pad, Christmas stamp and Christmas journal from the Dollar Section at Michaels.

We stamped our design on blank paper. I just happened to have this stamp. If you don't, your project would be even easier...just make your own! Type your title on the computer and print it could make it anyway you want. Put your family name on the front or the name of whoever will be writing in the journal.

Next, cut out the design. We left a small edge of white paper around the outside of the ink for an extra detail. Glue on your title piece. That's it! How easy is that?

Just think how sweet this would be to collect written thoughts from each of your family members year after year in one journal. Or...have a journal committed to each of your children. They can write in it and record memories in their own words and handwriting. Precious! It would be fun to compare their handwriting and thoughts from year to year. I can't wait to get the kids writing in their own journals!

Happy writing!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Crazy Week

I have been doing nothing but crafting from the moment I wake up until the moment I fall into bed. I found out last night that I will be at my first craft show this weekend...with about 4 days notice. Yikes! I have done some great projects, but I just don't have time to stop and get things posted today. Hopefully I can get some pictures posted tomorrow.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Christmas End Table Part 2

It is finished! Whew...I am going to admit this was a bit more challenging than I had anticipated. The letters are so small and I am just not usually doing work where I need to be so careful with my paintbrush!

My project began with a catalogue from Exposures. They are a company that features mainly products for your photographs. My kind of company! I am always intrigued by their Christmas cards, and that is where I found my inspiration. Their Retro Label Collage Card has the most beautiful circle logo on was just what my end table needed! is my finished product...

You know when you finish a project, and you are just not sure what you think? And you want feedback to see what others think. This isn't one of those projects. I really could care less if the whole world hated it, because I LOVE it! I think the logo is classic and would be something you would enjoy pulling out Christmas after Christmas!

It would be a fairly easy project to recreate if you are patient. Apparently this is why the project was not as easy as I thought it would be...I needed to be more patient!

To recreate this look:

Find the piece you would like to paint. I happened to have a circle table. If you don't, Home Depot has round pieces of wood already cut just like this table top. If you don't want to make a table, it would look awesome hanging on the wall instead. They also come in all different sizes, so you could make it as large or as small as you would like. I am tempted to make another one really big to hang on the wall.

Next, take the logo from the website and enlarge it. If you don't have an overhead or an opaque projector, then have a copy shop enlarge it to your size. Use transfer paper to trace out your drawing. Or, if you don't have transfer paper...rub across the back of your paper with a pencil and it will now be your transfer paper!

I used VERY small brushes and two bottles of acrylic paint: Martha Stewart Acrylic Paints in Beetle Black and Tartan Red. I will say it again, these are EXCELLENT paints. Thier coverage is fantastic!

I painted directly onto the raw wood. When I was finished, I sealed it with two coats of Annie Sloan Clear Soft Wax.

That's it! Not difficult, just time consuming with the intricate letters.

This project makes me smile. Merry Christmas!

I am linking up here:

Todays Creative Blog

Friday, November 25, 2011

Christmas End Table Part 1

I have had this table since the beginning of the summer and kept debating what to do with it. I just couldn't seem to settle on an idea. So it has sat...untouched...for months.

This past week I got a catalogue in the mail. A catalogue that held creative gold! I spotted a Christmas card with text I fell in love with. It was love at first sight!

Today I enlarged the text and photocopied it onto a transparency. I pulled out my overhead projector (best $10 I ever spent at a Yard Sale!) and got to work.

I mean really, can't you see why I fell in love with this? It is awesome!

I traced the text onto my table.

I began painting.

I wasn't loving the table like I thought I would. Until...

I started painting the more intricate letters, the love came rushing back.

With every letter I loved the table more and more!

It is looking amazing!

I love, love, love, love how this looks!

The only problem is the intricate lettering is taking FOREVER! will have to wait until Monday to see what the final product will be.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

No, I have not accidentally posted photos from summer...this is actually what we were doing this afternoon. We were out at the beach looking for sand dollars. It is one of our favorite things to do. The calming sound of waves, cool water between your toes and the thrill of the hunt for free treasures...what's not to love? It is one of the things we are most thankful for here at the beach. Aaah...quiet, empty days at the beach.

And look how many sand dollars we found in the first minute of our hunt...

Seriously, in under a minute we had our hands on 7 sand dollars, and those were just the unbroken ones. Even my little guy found a sand dollar!

I think this is the first one he has ever found on his own. If you had any idea how impossible it is for him to find sand dollars you would be cheering for his success! We literally have hundreds of sand dollars in our house...hundreds. One afternoon we found over 100 in just an hour...he found that we had to point out to him. If it didn't make him a little sad it would be really funny! Needless to say, one of the things he is thankful for today was finding a sand dollar!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Wonderful Wednesday...Burlap Thanksgiving Pillow Covers

Look at this craft we did in our Brownies Troop last week for Thanksgiving:

Well, that was what I thought we would be making. I have learned that giving children art supplies, does not mean that they will make what you thought they would. They all have their own little Artist Imaginations, and it was fun to see what they created.

Katelyn, I love your persistence in working to get this just right!

Freedom wasn't a word that came to my mind to put on a Thanksgiving pillow, but I am now wondering why not? Freedom should be one of the first things I think of to be thankful for. Thanks Kassidy!

It never crossed my mind to use the foam brush to paint bold letters on the pillow, but I love how this turned out. It reminds me how we should love each other BOLDLY, with all we have...not holding back. Thanks Isabella!

Just look how important love is. It is not just stated once, but three times...with exclamation!

Sydney, I love the way you create with great care and detail. I think your pillow turned out better than mine! to create the way she wants to create. Free to worship. Free to speak what she wants to speak. Free...isn't that what Thanksgiving was originally about?

In the midst of all the preparations for Thanksgiving tomorrow, what can we learn from our kids? Take a moment to really hear them and listen to what it is they are truly thankful for. You may learn something.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Turkey Time

When I was teaching I "cooked up" these Turkeys with my 2nd Graders.

I thought it would be fun to have my kids make one, but we altered the design just a bit. In school we glued pieces together and stapled the pieces that would be stuffed. I thought stitching the pieces together would be a lot cuter...and good practice for hand/eye coordination for my kids.

Here are the supplies I used:
1. I used 1 paper grocery bag for the body. I cut out 2 pieces since they would be stitched together.
2. I used 1 sheet of redish 12x12 scrapbook paper to cut out 10 tail feather pieces (this will make 5 feathers) and 1 gobble
3. Yellow paper scraps to make 4 feet pieces and 1 beak
4. 5 bamboo skewers (could use Popsicle sticks)
5. 2 pieces of rope for the legs
6. Twine to hang the turkey
7. Hole punch
8. Stuffing (I used shredded paper)
9. Brown Thread
10. Needle
11. Paper Piercer
12. Hot Glue Gun
13. Scissors
14. Alphabet Stamps
15. Foam Sponge Brush
16. Acrylic Paint
17. 2 Googly eyes

I started by drawing my pieces I needed. I cut out two pieces for the turkey body from the paper grocery bag. I put the pieces together like they would be sewn together. Using the paper piercer, I punched holes in the body where it would be stitched. This way the kids could stitch the body together easily.

I repeated the same steps to make the 5 tail feathers, nose and the gobble.

Look at that concentration!

My daughter has decided she loves sewing. She thought this was just about the greatest thing she could possibly be doing.

After they stitched the feathers together, we inserted the wood skewers to give support to the feathers. This will allow the feathers to stand up straight and tall and not flop over with time.

The feet pieces were stitched together with the rope end between the two pieces.

The body was stitched together with the leg pieces sandwiched between them...leaving the head portion unstitched.

We used the foam stamps to stamp "Give Thanks" on the body of the turkey with acrylic paint.

When the paint dried, we stuffed the body with shredded paper. We stitched the eyebrows on the head.

Next, we stitched half the head and then stuffed the head. We finished up by stitching up the remainder of the head.

The remainder of the pieces just needed to be hot glued onto the bird.

Look how cute he is!

What a cute and inexpensive project...we had everything on hand...this project was totally free. FREE! Even more than the fact that this project was free, I like the reminder to "Give Thanks." If a turkey...the ultimate Thanksgiving martyr...can be thankful at Thanksgiving, shouldn't that be a good reminder for us to be thankful for what we have?

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Monday, November 21, 2011

Silouette Cameo Giveaway!

Have you ever wanted a Silouette Cameo of your very own? I know I have. Head on over to Tatertots & Jello where you can enter for a chance to win one of your very own. Win. As in FREE Silouette Cameo! I know of a friend who specifically said she wants one for Christmas. Yeah, you A. Go on over and enter...but if you win it instead of me, promise I can come over for a Play Date!

Cheer Team Pretzel Rod Snacks

We are back from the big cheer competition and my daughters team came in 4th place. I am so proud of them and all their hard work! We had a great time and a lot of fun together exploring a new place.

But I must admit, one of the best moments of the weekend had nothing to do with my daughter.

The competition had several teams of girls with special needs. There were a couple girls in wheel chairs and one team even had a girl who was blind. There they their cheer uniforms...performing. It was awesome. I know how much courage it took my little girl to perform on the same stage. The courage and bravery these girls displayed moved me to my very soul. I know how many hours our team practiced to get their stunts perfected...several of these teams also performed stunts. It was amazing! I have never been more proud...proud of children I have never met before. Great work girls!!

A couple of the teams used the song "Who Says" by Selena Gomez. Have you ever paid attention to the words?

Who says
Who says you’re not perfect
Who says you’re not worth it
Who says you’re the only one that’s hurting
Trust me
That’s the price of beauty
Who says you’re not pretty
Who says you’re not beautiful
Who says

It was beautiful! The crowd began clapping along with the music...the whole crowd. They hadn't done that with the other teams. There had been polite cheers up until this point, but basically you cheered for your girls. But this was different. It was very moving...and there I was in the middle of the Convention a cheer competition...with tears streaming down my face. The beauty of these girls was immeasurable!

Alright, on to the project for the day. I want to share an EASY project that I did for our team and one you can use for any occasion. I have made these for Christmas, Valentines Day, birthday can change the colors and sprinkles and use them for any occasion. The best part is they are easy and kids can make them...and they will still look great! These are the basic ingredients I used to get started:

The first step was to melt the white chocolate pieces and dip in one end of the pretzels.

Next I melted green chocolate pieces in a squeeze bottle. I squeezed on a drizzle of green since our colors are green, black and white.

While the chocolate was still melted I shook on cookies & creme crumbles to add the black color to the pretzel rods. The chocolate will act like glue and hold the sprinkles in place once it solidifies. I placed a tray of pretzels into the freezer to solidify faster, but you could leave them on the counter and be more patient.

I wrapped each girl two pretzel rods in a plastic treat bag and tied it with green and black ribbon.

Look how cute this looks! And they are truly so easy that your kids could make them!

As we checked into the hotel, I placed this container on the check in counter. One guest thought it was a treat from the hotel...pretty funny...although I did quickly tell her to get her hands off my treats!

I am linking up here: