Wednesday, December 23, 2015
Posted by Andrea at 2:07 AM
Friday, December 18, 2015
I made this fun project a few years ago.
I wanted something sort of manly for my husband’s office, but something that also reflected the girl in me.
Hence, sparkle for me/deer for him.
I started by buying 9 black frames, some sparkle scrapbook paper, and a deer punch.(I got the punch after Christmas on clearance.)
You could also use a cricut or silhouette if you are lucky enough to have one of those. :(
I punched 9 deer out of sparkle paper, and put them in the center of the black sparkle paper that was cut to the size of the frames.
I cleaned the glass, and added the cute little print I just made.
Then I hung them close together in a 3x3 formation.
By doing this, it made it look like one big accent for the wall instead of 9 separate accents.
I have loved the way this looks in Jonathan’s office.
I also think this could look Awesome for a holiday project.
I hope this inspires you to make and create this holiday season.
I shared the link to this talk earlier on this month, and I just know you would love this short clip all about being creative.
It puts into perspective what being creative really means, what it takes to be creative, and that any one can do it!
Monday, December 14, 2015
The ten pound effect/That's what January is for:
We have a Christmas tradition of reading one book each night from Dec. 1st until Christmas.
I normally wrap all these book, and then they go under the tree.
This year, I decided that I was ending the madness of trying to wrap 24 books before Dec. 1st.
This year, I decided upon a solution.
This solution involved some preparation this year, but will solve my wrapping problems from here on out.
I started by heading to Hobby Lobby and picking up some adorable fabric and ribbon.
One yard of fabric will make 3 bags; so that meant I needed 8 yards. You could choose one fabric or up to eight different styles.
With this fabric, I decided that I was going to sew up 24 bags that the books could be put in.
I decided to sew on some ribbon, and then tie them up like a little gift to be placed under the tree.
No more wrapping, now I just have to stick them in these bags.
So a few nights before December 1st, Stella and I got to work.
I cut the fabric in thirds, using the fold in the fabric as the bottom of the bag.
I made sure to make bags of all sizes, because books are all sizes.
I made sure that if I cut a small bag on one of the yards of fabric, that I cut a really large piece as well, and then a medium piece. That still gave me 3 bags from one yard.
On some of the yards, I cut the bags all the same.
Then all that was left to do was to sew a hem along the top.
Then stitch up the sides of the bags, using the fold for the bottom. This is like the easiest sewing project ever. I am no good at sewing, and I can totally manage this. This was also a great opportunity to let Stella have a go at her new-found sewing skills.
We also cut a cute piece of ribbon or tulle, and we sewed it to the back of the bag. Then it would be there every year when we were ready to tie up the bag.
Stella also helped me put all the books down in the bags, and tie them up.
We tied them up with the cute little ribbon already attached to the back.
Then I labeled them with these adorable number tags that I found here.
I attached them to the tied ribbon with some sequin trim and a stapler.
I am hoping to laminate the tags, but I don’t have a laminator. YET!
I am hoping Santa puts that under the tree for me this year!!
I am so excited that I won’t be spending 2 hours every year wrapping books.
Don’t they look adorable under the tree?
If you want to start this tradition, I highly suggest making these bags.
I have had a few questions about this tradition:
Do you buy 24 new books each year?
No, I buy one new book each year, and let that be the first book the kids open.
Then I just wrap books we have been collecting over the years. I think this is important to use the same books. That is part of the tradition; reading books that your kids remember and love.
What are some of your favorite Christmas books?
How did you start your tradition? Did you just go out and buy 24 books?
I was really lucky. My grandma gave me all her Christmas books, so I had a really good start. Then I started collecting them all year long at local thrift stores. Also, like I said, I buy one new book each year. Jex is 13 so that is 13 NEW books. We have a huge collection now.
My husbands nurse also did this for us last year, so she gave us 24 books to add to our collection. She also gave us an ornament to go along with each book as well. This was so fun last year to open a book and an ornament. This might be a fun way to kick off your tradition for your family, and then as you read the books for years to come they look for that ornament on the tree?
Traditions are such an important part of a child’s upbringing.
“Family traditions are like spiritual and emotional cement in the foundation of a happy home. They create fond memories, and these memories bond us together as nothing else can.” taken from this article titled, “Traditions worth keeping.”
I hope you find traditions in your own home that can bond you together.
Posted by Andrea at 10:00 AM
Friday, December 11, 2015
I started collecting these adorable putz houses a few years ago.
I have been seriously obsessed with them.
I found some that I knew would look cute in Stella’s room, but I have struggled to collect enough for Tessa’s.
There are lots out there to buy online, but I like to buy things at a bargain. I guess you could say that I had a hard time finding any at a bargain.
I decided to try making my own version.
It was such a fun project, that I thought I would share a quick tutorial with you.
Please do not judge that many of these photos are just the regular iphone pics, but they get the point across; and hopefully will help you create something of your own.
The first part of the project is bleaching and dying your bottle brush trees. These can be found at Hobby Lobby or Michaels, and you can find a tutorial for that here.
While your trees are drying, you can begin your houses.
I found the houses at Hobby Lobby. They were really inexpensive. They can be found down the chipboard isle. There are 3 sizes.
The roofs come off, so you can work on them in two pieces.
I started by choosing the colors I wanted them to be, and spray painting them.
I painted all the roofs white, and the houses a color.
While the paint was still wet, I sprinkled them with fake snow and glitter.
(well, Stella sprinkled them with snow and glitter)
I found the bag of snow at Hobby Lobby.
Once you add the snow and glitter, then it’s good to spray them with a clear spray paint. This will hold the glitter and snow in place.
Once your houses are dry, it’s time to start putting the fun finishing touches on the houses.
I collected all the trinkets at Hobby Lobby or Michaels. I found them near the Christmas village sections and the mini-tree sections. There is so much to choose from, so just buy what you love and would want on your houses.
The first step is adding this fake snow paint to the roof of your houses. This makes your roof look like it has real snow on it. This can also be found at Hobby Lobby. The jar looks like this:
You just use an old paint brush, and dab it on thick.
The next step is adding your now dry bottle brush trees to the houses. I did this by pulling the base off.
Then using a nail I pushed a hole into the base of the house where I wanted the tree, and made a hole for the stem of the tree.
Make sure to decorate your trees first.
Then using hot glue on the stem, I shoved the trees in the holes I made.
Once you have your trees secure, then it’s time to decorate your houses.
I used this cute gold trim for the trees, and for the roof line.
I added this fun reindeer to the roof.
You can also make wreaths using chenille trim.
This is left up to your own creativity and devices. I used other houses for inspiration.
There is a lot of inspiration here.
I love how they all came together. I loved them so much I made some for my basement family room, and for Tessa’s room.
Once you get all your trinkets on, add some more snow paint to the base of trees and the bases of houses.
You could also use velum paper behind the windows if you wanted to fill that part of the house in. I think I will do that for next year.
I really enjoyed putting some lights on the houses. I used led lights that are connected with wire. The only place I have found these is at Walmart.
I found the big star lights at the dollar store.
I have loved walking into all the rooms at night and seeing all the fun, glowing, putz houses.
I especially love seeing the ones that I made.
Often times, I find that creativity comes at a cost.
It’s hard to sit down and work on a project when you know that other things are going to suffer.
My house, my ability to shower and get ready, and just about every daily responsibility certainly fell apart the day that I put this project together, but it was worth it.
It is so important for me to let those creative juices out sometimes; even if I don’t get to shower.
I can put the pieces back together later, and then add my new project to the pretty little pieces of my life.
Take the time to create.
For more on the importance of creativity check out this little gem.