Monday, March 31, 2008

Adding to the Collection

I made another headband this morning. This one was a specific request from my 5-year old, "I want black and white polka dots, Mom." I found some really cute fabric this week, lots of mod-style prints and I could have gotten a lot more than the three I chose, but I was trying to be "practical." Anyways, this one came together really easily because the fabric wasn't as thick as the original denim I used on the previous one. I would still like to attach some pretty buttons or fabric flowers to give it that really original look. And, another good thing, they are really cheap to make, this fabric, was only $1.12 for 1/4 of a yard which is enough fabric to make two headbands....WAY cheap in my book.

80 and I Stopped Counting

I am working on Teacher Appreciation Week gifty-type items while we are on Spring Break this week. Something I have been able to complete are 80 pairs of scalloped circles to hold peppermint patties in a centerpiece. I don't have the flower "stems" painted yet, so I am just showing you the color combinations I have put together already. I went with using solid-colored cardstock vs. patterned paper, which I thought would be too busy. I actually borrowed this idea from a wonderful website called - they have so many great ideas within their gallery pages. As soon as I get the flowers completed and displayed in the cute containers I found at Hobby Lobby I will post a picture for everyone to see. Right now, I am proud of completing 80 of these suckers with everything else I've had going on.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Homemade Headband

Well, because I'm in a crafty mood today, I thought I would try my chance at a homemade fabric headband. Abby chose a denim fabric which, I thought would be good for her to wear with her favorite jeans to school, but now that I've sewn the darn thing together, I've decided the next one will definitely be something in a lighter-weight fabric. The hardest part was turning the pieces inside out. It came together quickly and the directions were very easy to follow. We are also going to attach some colorful buttons as soon as I can get it off of her. :) I found the pattern on I plan to make several more - they will be great for the summer.

Scrappin at Midnight on a Friday night

Our local scrapbook store had an Easter crop on Friday night. I went, along with my sister and a friend. We all had a great time although I think we worked at a much slower pace. I stayed up WAY past my bedtime, 12:48 to be exact. I did, however, produce 4 pages (3 complete and 1 still-in-progress) that turned out very well. They were "fun" pages, my favorite kind. I hope to finish the last one today as we are taking it easy, enjoying the holiday and spending some time at home with each other. Happy Easter!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Decorated Gum Holder

Another quick project I finished this week included a decorated gum holder for a teacher friend. I subbed for 3 days this week in a third grade class. Even though I have been with this class many times, they are one of my favorites, I called on the suite-mate teacher quite often for questions about this or that...she was a tremendous amount of help and never made me feel like I was being a bother. Anyways, I thought I would give her a little treat Thursday morning. (I'm not sure, but I think she is a health nut, and I've noticed that she chews gum quite a bit, so I thought this gum holder would be the perfect thing to give her.) Inside this wrap is a package of sugar-free Eclipse gum. I didn't take a picture of the back, but I stamped a "Happy Easter" tag using one of my Michael's dollar stamps. This was something I put together in less than 5 minutes before heading off to school that morning. When I gave it to her she was surprised and it made her smile!

Purple Peeps

Well, I guess lately I have been full of "last minute" ideas. Wednesday night I decided to make chocolate covered Peeps using some purple melting wafers I had leftover from another cooking project. I thought I would make 12 for Abby's kindergarten class then, of course, Cayla wanted some for her class, that meant another 17 and then I thought, "Well, my class might enjoy some too." In the end I made a total of 50 of them. They were super easy and came together nicely.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Speedy Delivery

This package came together in literally 5 minutes. It all started when I wanted to make something for a student I was teaching the very next day and I was running out of time on a school night. Abby was waiting patiently for me to tuck her in to bed and it was already almost 9:00 p.m. I pieced this package together using the Mini M&Ms candy roll as a template. I went to a pad of birthday celebration paper I had and found two "boyish" looking die cuts which I jazzed up using my trusty gel pen. I also added some quick machine stitching using my sewing machine. The gingham ribbon was the final touch even though Abby didn't "care for it." Poor guy, he was having a birthday and his teacher was out of town. I didn't want him to come in and not have something sitting on his desk to tell him he was "special."

Friday, March 14, 2008

Bunny Corn Boxes

Today's fun included making three "boxes" - really just paper "wrappers" - holding little cello bags filled with bunny corn. I was looking at Target today for something small to give the teachers for Easter but nothing really sparked my interest. I came home and decided to "make do" with something I already had. My first attempt was a carrot box made from orange cardstock. It didn't come together very well. For the life of me, I couldn't get the point at the bottom of the carrot to fold over "just right." My second attempt was a "purse" box using a piece of scrapbook paper. I found the template for it at Target [on clearance]. Well, it didn't come together very well and I noticed that I was beginning to lose my patience. A few seconds later, I looked over and saw a paper wrapper that I picked up on Wednesday from one of our local scrapbook stores. They were giving them away with homemade cookies. I used it for a pattern and made these really cute candy "boxes" to hold bunny corn. I added a few extras including the yellow scalloped paper, a flower and button. This was one of those projects that took WAY more time than it should have, but I guess that's part of the process.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

A Tisket, A Tasket, A Pretty Easter Basket

Here's a photo of the kindergarten Easter "Basket" I just whipped up. I'm not sure if these are going to "make the cut" or not, but I just went with the idea in my head. The children painted the cans today and I added the paper grass, cut out eggs (which the kids can decorate) and punched the holes for the handles. My daughter did not especially love the fabric handle I created, but I thought it was a cheaper alternative to ribbon and prettier than wire. I will show Abby's teacher tomorrow to see what she thinks. I think the top of the can needs some additional decoration of some kind, painted suns, flowers, or maybe even the child's name...but I had to stop myself from getting too carried away - it's their craft keepsake, not mine!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Altered Clipboard

For a while now I have been thinking about having a "personal" clipboard with me when I go into my classrooms for substitute teaching. On most days I carry around the teacher's plans strategically mapping every minute of our day. On a few occassions I have set the plans down only to have a minor panic attack when I forgot where I placed them. And, of course, I could never let the children "see me sweat." So then I have to casually look around until I find them. Well, to avoid that situation, a few weeks ago, I began using a classroom clipboard to clip my plans onto and then I carry the clipboard around and it seems to be much easier to keep up with. Well today, a friend and I went to a new A.C. Moore store and I spied this awesome ready-to-be-altered clipboard - it's really nice and LARGE!!! I also found some neat Junkitz brand "school" paper to give it that cool "doodled" look. Tonight, I had a good time putting it together using Mod Podge, chipboard letters, ribbon and a few epoxy embellishments. I can't wait to use it next week. Look out 3rd grade, here I come!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Babies & Bunnies

Whew! This morning has been fun....I decided to let the chores go (except laundry - there's always laundry) and work on the many projects I have upcoming. I am getting ready for so many things: our neighborhood Easter egg hunt and party, my niece's baby shower, a garage sale, Teacher Appreciation Week and kindergarten registration at my daughters' school. This morning I tackled some crafty activities for the Easter party and the baby shower. Today's post includes a picture of the 20 party favor bags I put together for the guests at the baby shower. The wrapped candy bars in cellophane bags are just so darling, I can't stand it!! I got to use my new and most favorite scallop punch (it was hard to find, btw) and some really cute plastic tie-ons that I nabbed last week at the Dollar Tree. To be honest, I decided to take the lazy way out by not stamping and coloring any designs on the bags. I found a really cute baby buggy clear stamp at JoAnn's a while back, but when I found these plastic ones at the Dollar Tree I thought, "Hmmmm....less work" and that's the route I took. I found the multi-dot paper for the candy at Hobby Lobby. It was the only small-scale design I could find with babyish colors. I hope everyone enjoys them.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Baby Booties

This afternoon I worked with my sister putting together 20 baby booties made from 8 ounce styrofoam cups. I found this idea on the web "somewhere"...what did we do before the internet came around??? We are getting ready for a baby shower for my niece on April 12th. I have so much going on at this point anything I can do early is a bonus!! These were a cinch to make. I think the plan is to place them on the food table around the cake. We will be filling them with the really pretty pastel butter mints that is a requirement (in my book) for any "fancy" party.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Organizing the Creative Space

Organization in the home is a constant "chore" but, for those of us who absolutely LOVE any kind of organizing task, it is really fun and I actually look forward to the end result! Today I decided to spend some time going from room to room, pulling items for an upcoming garage sale, and at the same time organizing my spaces a little bit better - "fine tuning" is what I like to call it. These pictures show my craft room closet "after" and "before" - the computer did not sequence them the way I wanted them to be, but you get the idea. I did some simple purging and sorting and about 30 minutes later, I had a nice spacious looking closet again. I relocated many of the items to my dining room table where I will price them and put them away until our big sale. I like to have garage sales 3 to 4 times a year to get rid of the "excess" and make a litlte spending money at the same time. We are so fortunate to have so much, but sometimes we don't need everything we have.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Pretty in Packaging

It never ceases to amaze me how much prettier things look when you put them in pretty packaging. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE cellophane bags...and now that I've caught on to the bag-topper trend I just can't stand it but to re-package little things to give away as gifts to friends and those "special" peope in my life. I found these felted bling flowers today at Hobby Lobby. They were a steal at $1.00 for each bagful. I brought them home and quickly divided them into three piles - each with three different colors (these are all the colors they had for sale). I thought once I re-packaged them that they would make a cute giveaway to my two cropping buddies at our next all-day crop which is an Easter crop. And, they have self-adhesive dots on the reverse side, so no muss, no fuss. Can't get any better than that. This carrot stamp was a good find at Michael's for $1.00 also!! And, I am totally loving my new scallop punch!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Weird Science

I had a hard time trying to come up with a party idea for my daughter's 8th birthday. Last year we had a soccer party at the house, in the backyard, and the weather was just miserable. I decided this year that we were going to go somewhere "inside." Cayla's first choice was bowling which I thought would be fun...little did I know how expensive it was - $14.00 for each child to bowl and have an ice cream!!! Sheesh, that's pricey! Well, one day, while visiting a scrapbook store on the other side of town I stumbled upon a children's science store. I found out that they host birthday parties. After finding the phone number I called and found out they had a party called, "Ooze, Bubble & Fizz." We had our party there yesterday and it was literally a BLAST! We had 8 children and they all had a great time. Several said, "This was the best party ever!" The children created three different experiments, making slime, making a volcano and blasting off the caps of a film canister using Alka Seltzer tablets. I thought I would post a few pictures from the party along with the cake I made. Usually, we have a themed cake, Hello Kitty, Super Mario, etc., but this year Cayla wanted a particular chocolate cake so that's what we did. I'm glad everyone had a good time.