Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas catch up and new year planning

I'm hoping you all had a lovely Christmas. That your Santa was good to you and you made many memories with your loved ones. We had a great time in our home. So great that Christmas night my dear hubby and I both came down with a bit of a cold.....but thanks to my in laws and my sister we were able to get much needed rest the day after and are ready to plan for the new year.

Crazy for me to think another year is already starting!!!! Anyone else find it crazy too? Perhaps you are ready for it to come, in some ways I am surely am.

Well, as the year comes forward....I do want you know I have some fun plans in store for the blog, including some fun links, tutorials, and some fun giveaways!!!!

So, if you aren't already a follower of the blog, click on the sidebar, become a follower and keep in the loop! You might just find you enjoy following with me on the ride for 2011 :)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Reindeer Food

My son came home from school last week with a little bag of dust.....when I inquired about it I learned it was Reindeer Food.


So today, just to make sure we had enough to lead the reindeer to our house we made some more, and this time, my little man insisted we add blue glitter so Santa will be sure to know which house is his.

The first batch was for all the reindeer, this special mix is just for Rudolph, in case you were wondering :)

Step what reindeer need to eat....oatmeal, cinnamon, glitter, (you can add brown sugar but it's not necessary.)

Step 2: add oatmeal to a baggie, be sure to do it over a pan or sink....little hands can make a big mess!

Step 3- Add glitter so the reindeer can see it in the dark....our favorite color in this house is blue!
Step 4- Add a lot of cinnamon to make sure it smells good and is sweet.....
Step 5- have mommy close up the bag and shake it really well so everything mixes nicely.

Now make sure you sprinkle it on your yard before bedtime tomorrow night so the reindeer know to stop at your house and let Santa deliver the presents!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Gift Card Cozy

This post tutorial is holiday themed, but can seriously be done all year long for any gift card giving.....

My sister in law and brother in law wanted gift cards this year for our Santa gift swap. While we like getting people what they ask for, I hate just sticking a gift card in a card or bag because they seem so cold that I raided my scrap stash and made a few gift card cozies. Nothing fancy, just a way to wrap the card up a little without spending more cash and adding a personal touch.

If you want to make some of your own here's my method of madness.....
 Took a scrap of fabric that was 6" wide by 8" long and folded it in half lengthwise with right sides facing together then added a lightweight interfacing to both sides.
I stitched along two sides leaving an opening on one end....turned it right side out and folded in the open edge.
I did a zig-zag stitch along the top and folded the tube as shown so it is not quite in half. You can just stitch the side seams closed with a zig-zag/straight stitch or if you wanted to add a decoration on it this would be the time....
 I took a strip of ribbon and folded creases in it as I ran it through the sewing machine, then just lay it on top of where you want it, stitch it into place and sew up your side seams. 

Add a gift card and you're all done! Happy gift giving!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Holiday Card Holder

I have received a lot of picture Christmas cards this year, and my poor fridge can't hold them all, so they took residence on my bar top.

Here was my before.....

So after seeing this post on a blog...I decided to do something. I don't have a piano or a fireplace mantel in my home, but with the help of 3M wall hooks and my barren front wall I can now see them displayed.
I did under estimate how many cards I had and would fit, so I had to add some ribbon to the top of my banner to finish posting them up.

Here's how I did mine.....
Took some holiday scrapbook paper, craft glue and wood clothespins. Cut out strips of paper and glued them to the clothespins then let them dry. I then used an Exacto-knife to trim off the excess and added a small jeweled dot onto the top for decoration. Then I posted the wall hooks on the wall. Knotted the ribbon on each side and hung up my cards.

No more clutter on the counter and I get to see the faces and lives of the people I love as I walk past that part of my house every day!

Teacher gift idea

I know this post is a little late for giving to a teacher this holiday season, but thought I would post it anyways. Always something you can make in advance and give during Teacher Appreciation Week. Or use the gift idea for someone else this holiday season.

I took a plain front small notebook (mine was cardboard, not plastic) and applied some craft glue to the front of the notebook. Then I added the scrapbook paper to the front and trimmed around the edges to clean it up. Using my Cricut, I cut out the letters for my son's teacher and glued them to the front.

Pair it with a nice pen and it makes a cute little set. Also made some of these for birthday presents for friends.

Who doesn't love a personalized present?

Personalized snack bags

I got a new embroidery card for my sewing machine a while ago, but with the crazy schedule and the exhaustion that comes with pregnancy and chasing after my three year old, I haven't had a lot of time to devote to learning the in's and out's of how it works and all the quirks.

Now with my Christmas vacation, I have been enjoying some crafting time and learning how to use it. So when a friend wanted some snack bags made for her 3 little girls I had another excuse to use it. Especially since she wanted all three bags the same but with their initial on it to let each girl know which one was hers.

The picture makes the letter look darker than the polka dots, but the thread color is brown, just looks really dark with it all together.

I do think it adds a nice little touch....but my girlfriend got super lucky with these, as I do think I will charge more for the added touch as it eats up a lot of thread and more time than before. But still way cute!

Do think there will be some happy girls eating snacks and looking adorable!

Bowling Boys

If you aren't a subscriber to Family Fun magazine and you have small children in your home, you should definitely look into a subscription. It's such a fantastic magazine with a lot of fun projects, ideas, cooking tips and such.

That's where I discovered the Bowling Boys idea.

I made these little guys for my son, and while they were intended to be a Christmas stocking stuffer...he got them a little early because once I finished making them he saw them and loved them.

I picked up the wood pieces at my local Michaels and used left over ribbon from my stash with some craft glue and a Sharpie. The best bouncy ball was from my Old Navy store in the jumbo $.25 trap they have. Super easy to whip up and a cute little addition this holiday season!

JOY Jars

I always tend to have a last minute Christmas present that I need to make or get and am clean out of ideas. Anyone else? I love to give handmade gifts but sometimes I run short of ideas.

So last week when I went to my mommy group Christmas gift exchange I loved this idea and totally went home to make some of my own! Many thanks to Melissa for this great present!!!!

 These little jars certainly brought some joy to my day and week as I made them for friends and family.

Psst.....If any of you see this in your Christmas present bag you'll know where my inspiration came from.

Take some glass jars and decorative rocks and fill your jars a couple inches deep.

Then using a Cricut and some scrapbook paper...I used scraps from previous projects, make a background 3x5 card and round the edges and cut out your letters for JOY.....

You can also do different holiday cards so you just have to change out the cards from one holiday to the next.... Hearts for Valentines Day, 3 ring clovers for St. Patrick's Day, MOM for Mother's Day, EGG for Easter, DAD for Father's Day, USA for Fourth of July, BOO for Halloween, or just put 3 pictures on paper to keep in the jars while you wait between the seasons.

I love these holiday settings because they can become functional all year without having to redo much in your home.

Making crayon fun!

For some of my Christmas presents I made my nieces an art smock and wanted to add something else with a personal/crafty touch. Rather than buy new crayons, I raided my crayon stash at work (I'm a full time teacher, so there were plenty of broken crayons in my classroom.) and had the kids peel off the paper for me. I took some silicone ice cube/baking trays from the local dollar store (and some borrowed from a friend) and made my own homemade crayons!

Note: This project did get a bit messy with crayon bits all over my kitchen floor and under my nails, so be prepared to clean up.

I baked mine for about 25 minutes about 200 degrees.

1- Peel crayons, break into small pieces and sort into colors. Or you can mix up the colors if you like.

2- Employ small children to help you break them- oh, so much fun!- and then sort them. Talk about a learning game.....productive and entertaining for mom and kids!

3- Lay out your trays on top of a cookie sheet or flat baking surface so it easier to remove. 

4- Let your crayons cool in the pans and harden. then carefully pop them out.

5- Sort them out into little plastic baggies and you've got a great little gift!  

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Fireman tee shirt

My little man loves firetrucks, firefighters and all such I redid a plain red shirt and decorated it just for my little fireman want to be.

I found the tee on clearance at Target, but little man isn't a fan of plain shirts. It had a pocket on the front of it, which I removed with my seam ripper. I used some June Taylor transfer paper and ran it through the printer with this little decoration then cut it out and ironed it on top of where the pocket had been. Big hit with my boy!

Now if only my warm Florida weather would return so he could wear it!

Wubbzy Art smock

I've got a sweet little girl that is a dear friend of ours up in the cold region of Minnesota. So I wanted to make sure to send her a Christmas gift she could use in the nice heated indoors. Being that I know her and her mama are both crafty ladies I decided on making her an art smock, chalk mat and then a little zippered tote with art supplies to use. And yes, there is a lot of Wow, Wow Wubbzy fabric involved in this gift set!

Here's another art smock I used for a previous birthday present....I see a few more being made before the Christmas holiday!

Pillowcase Dress Duo

I've made a little girl dress in the past, but this past weekend I worked on a matching set of dresses for some adorable cuties and their Christmas outfits. 

Maybe because it's Florida, but we're not always in full Christmas attire this time of year, so the mama went for a fun flirty pattern they could use year round with our weather. Love the versatility of these little dresses. 

I also enjoyed the flowers that I added to the dresses, felt like a nice little touch.