Archives for March 2011

Wednesday’s Wowzers: Talk About Eye Candy!

Hello my friends!
I feel like a million bucks today.  My husband is finally home after his longest business trip yet.  I feel a huge weight lifted off my shoulders, and I can't wait to have a bit more time for crafting and creating the rest of this week.
How I treasure Wednesdays!  I take it easy and show off some of the amazing talent floating around blogland.  I must say that I feel that today's edition of Wednesday's Wowzers is quite exceptional.  You'll see what I mean...
My friend Delia has done it again!  This scrappy flower wreath is so stinkin' cute!  I love that she made this out of a frame. The nontraditional square wreath has so much personality!  And the colors are just so pretty!
If you are a sweets lover, you must check out Frosted Happy.  You will find all sorts of amazing cupcake ideas!  Check out these "lucky" lemon cream cheese cupcakes.  Aren't they adorable?!  And they look tasty, too!
Speaking of cupcakes... I can't resist a fun learning game.  Especially a cute one.  I LOVE this cupcake matching game from Playing House.  Darling!

 

What can I say about this Anthro bow bag except that I adore it?!  Love the bow, the colors, everything!  The Little Appleseed shared this cute tutorial (including a detailed pattern!) on Someday Crafts.
More eye candy... The Reed Life shared pictures of this amazing pennant bed.  I want a pennant bed!!  Perfect for any little girl (or big girl!).  Found via Be Different... Act Normal.
As soon as I saw these cardboard tube bunny rabbits, I recognized the genius behind it!  Crafts By Amanda - Isn't she great?!  I love how she can turn something inexpensive into something so cute!
Finally, The Purl Bee shared this fun tutorial for Easter egg hunt bags.  What a fun alternative to the traditional baskets.  Love that ricrac!
So what was your favorite featured project?
Have a great day!

Mr. Lucky Shirt {Using Heat Transfer Vinyl}

Oh how I love the gals at eighteen25!  Their Silhouette t-shirts absolutely rock my world!  When I saw their latest and greatest St. Patrick's Day shirts, I got sucked in.
If you've been reading my blog for a while, you know I have a strange kind of addiction.  I always promise myself that I will stop making special occasion shirts for Little Man.  But somehow, at the last minute, I always feel compelled to make some kind of shirt for him to wear.

I have used all kinds of different methods.  Freezer paper stencils.  Appliques.  But over the holidays, I purchased Silhouette's flocked heat transfer vinyl for the first time.  This stuff is magic. I absolutely can't get enough of it!  (Yes, I purchase Silhouette materials to use on my Cricut. Ha ha!  If the Silhouette crew would ever like to hook me up, I would be more than willing to make a complete conversion from Cricut to Silhouette products!)
I simply designed my vinyl, cut it on the Cricut, and then followed the instructions to iron it on to the t-shirt.  The flocked vinyl has a fun, velvety feeling to it.
Little Man already wore this shirt Saturday at Denver's St. Patrick's Day Parade--which, by the way, was the best parade I've ever attended!
Are you or your family wearing anything special for St. Patrick's Day?

Quick Shamrock Button Art

Last week, I was going through a crafting panic attack.  I had spent so much time creating the latest Mommy School packet and hadn't created anything new in over a week.  Crazy, I know!

To treat my anxiety, I decided that I needed a simple project.  A project that I could sit down and knock out in under an hour.  It would ease my anxiety to have just one project made.  This shamrock button art was the perfect solution.

Cute, easy, festive.  Hard to mess up.  Perfect for me.

 

I didn't take step-by-step pictures, but here are a few simple directions:

I purchased this frame at Hobby Lobby for 50% off.  (See, I told you I was on a frame kick!)  I measured to determine how to cut the scrapbook paper background.  Aren't the yellow polk-a-dots cheery?!

Next, I just traced a shamrock pattern onto the paper.  Now for the fun part:  I collected ALL the green buttons I could find, and hot-glued them inside the shamrock shape!  I literally only had 3 buttons left when I was done.

It felt a little bare to me, so I cut the word "Lucky" out of black vinyl, and added that to the final product.  I inserted all of that back inside the frame, leaving out the glass, and I was done!

Phew!  This was the cure I was looking for... I can always use a little crafting therapy!!
Happy Monday!

Sunday Snippets: Just a Day at the Park

I am craving spring.  
Some days I feel that it is almost here.  On those days, I just want to snatch it up!  Monday was a rare occasion, indeed.  The weather was dandy, and Mr. Oopsey Daisy was in town.  We set out to enjoy the fine weather as a family!
We set out with a Radio Flyer full of goldfish and this sweet Little Man.
Can you guess who dreamed up this idea?  I'll give you just one guess...
Yes, this adventure was 100% the genius of Mr. Daisy!
 
 We are still getting to know our new neighborhood. Although we intended to walk straight to the park, we meandered a bit.  (That makes me feel better than admitting we got lost!) Little Man did a little exploring.
 I do believe the park was worth the wait for this monkey.  Isn't it amazing how 
in just a few short months, our kids change in leaps and bounds?!  In the months since we last visited the park, Little Man can do some pretty amazing things on the playground.  I must admit I am one proud Mama when I see all of his latest stunts!
This ladder quickly became the favorite part of the park.  He wanted to climb it over and over and over and over again!
 Just as we were leaving, Little Man discovered his shadow.  He ran around chasing it just like Peter Pan.
 And of course there was a little more Father/Son horsing around...
Here's hoping for more delightful days just like these!

What were the best moments of your week?

Leprechaun Pie

Tis the season for green, right?

Well, this leprechaun pie is as green as it gets!  You can whip this up in no time and call yourself festive!  And the best part is that kids love it!  This delicious treat has a purpose: To find the leprechaun's gold. There is a fun printable poem that goes along with this treat, too.
With just a few simple supplies, I whipped up this cup that easily won over my own lil' leprechaun!

 

First, gather your supplies.  Nothing too fancy.  You will need:
* Instant pistachio pudding mix. (I am not a huge pistachio fan, so I chose to do Cookies N' Cream with a bit of green food coloring!)
* Milk
* Whipped cream
* Oreo and sprinkles (optional)
* Foil-wrapped chocolate coin (I could NOT track these down, so I just used a Dove chocolate.)
* Clear plastic cup
The whole goal of Leprechaun Pie is discovering the leprechaun's gold at the bottom of the cup.  To begin,I dropped this Dove chocolate in the bottom of the cup. Unfortunately, Little Man saw me do this, and he was very frustrated.  He wanted to eat that candy immediately!
Now mix up the pudding.  I did this in my liquid measuring cup.  This is easy:
Combine 2 Tablespoons instant pudding with 3 Tablespoons milk. Stir well.  It will thicken up a bit.
I transferred the pudding to the cup now.  I added some whipped cream, an Oreo, and yes, even some green sprinkles!  (Yes, this is loaded with sugar, but fortunately it is a very small dose!)
Little Man's only motivation was to find that candy.  He was a bit impatient, and didn't want to eat the pudding at first.  He was almost pouting about having to eat dessert!
"No way, Mom."
Finally, he was able to find the candy in the cup.   He literally shouted, "Hooray!" when he saw that elusive candy.  Between the two of us, we cleared the pudding so he could eat his leprechaun's gold!
Happy now.
There is a darling poem that goes along with this treat, too.  Just click the image below to download the poem.
Poem Credits
Clip art designs and/or fonts copyright Dianne J Hook. Used with permission from DJ Inkers. I could not share ANY of these cute fonts and clip art with you except for their support!  Thanks guys!
Every holiday needs some sugar to make it a special occasion!
Enjoy your weekend!

Good Luck {Using Paintable Wallpaper}

FINALLY...
A St. Patrick's Day craft!
I actually whipped up this craft weeks ago, but I guess I was "hoarding" it until now.  I have to thank The Crafting Chicks for introducing me to paintable wallpaper months ago.  I had no idea it existed, and I have been dying to try it out for myself.
Come along for a little tut!
Lately I have been on a real frame kick.  (You will see more frames in future projects, I promise!)  I found this treasure at TJ Max.  I just added to its beauty with a little Ralph Lauren faux technique glaze.  This couldn't be any easier.  Paint it on, and then wipe it off.  Not even I can mess that up!
Paintable wallpaper can be found at Home Depot in a HUGE roll that will last you forever for just $18 or so.  I love this pattern.  Just look at all of that natural texture! This is the piece I cut to fit my frame.
I simply spray painted the sheet of wallpaper and slipped it into the frame.  Don't the gold and green look gorgeous together already?!

Can you believe that this was my FIRST project using pages out of an old book?!  I felt kind of bad.  I guess it's because I spent so much energy teaching kids how to read!  And this book looks like a good one, too!  But I snagged it at a thrift store 6 months ago, and it was just waiting to be used!
I just cut strips of paper, folded them accordion style, and kind of squished them until they looked like this...

After agonizing over fonts forever (am I the only one who does this?!), I printed this little "Good luck" on gold cardstock.  It looks brown in the pictures, but believe you me--it is gold!  You know, like a pot of gold!

So I put it all together....
Now I am finally getting in the mood for St. Patrick's Day.
Have a great day, my friends!

Wednesday’s Wowzers: St. Patty’s Day & More!

Hey friends, happy Wednesday!!

Whew, it's been quite a week already!  A little sickness.  A little snow. I have been battling a little bit of a creative funk.  I have decided that I desperately need spring's arrival to get me busting out with some fresh ideas.
I love Wednesdays because I love showing off the creativity of other amazing bloggers! So just sit back and relax and enjoy this dose of inspiration...

I love the doily wall art from Mod Podge Rocks.  It's just plain classy!
I can't look at this lucky pillow without wanting to squeal! You can see more at Brassy Apple.
Kiki Creates is one of my new favorite blogs. Isn't this quick and colorful wreath a lot of fun?!  I love the rosettes and leaves!
Funky Polk-a-dot Giraffe's "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" printable is one of my absolute favorites!!  I want to make a real button rainbow after seeing this! 
Just as I finished my "G is for Green" Mommy School packet, I discovered this adorable handprint leprechaun!  You can find all kinds of cute ideas at Meet the Dubiens.
Can you believe that Redberry Barn made an adorable card using a gift bag?!  Amazing!
 I can't begin to tell you how much I *LOVE* this birthday hat headband.  What a creative idea! My friend Tasha at The Creation Corner is the genius behind this.
Go stop by some of these lovely blogs and tell them I sent you!

G is for Green

Mommy School is baaaaaack!
All of your kindness and gratitude inspired me to get our Mommy School toddler program back on track.

I have literally been working on this packet all week long, even though it is slimmer than previous packets.  I have decided to make things as simple and as sweet as possible.
My packets are unique for one main reason:
Especially for toddlers, I believe in doing as many hands-on activities as possible!  I tend to steer away from pencil/paper activities. So the beauty of this packet is all of the ideas.  You can take these ideas and make them work for you! There are a few paper/pencil activities, but I mainly focus on ideas with the necessary visual aids.
Here are some of the concepts covered in this 2-week unit:
* Letter of the week:  G
* Number of the week:  5
* Color of the week:  Green
*Theme of the week:  Green/St. Patrick's Day
* Song of the week:  Five Fat Peas
You can download your own "G is for Green" packet here or here on Scribd.

I do have to enforce a few guidelines to protect myself when sharing my ideas.  So please read before downloading.
* This packet is in PDF format.  Please be sure that you have the most updated version of Adobe Reader in order to open the file.  I am not a computer expert, and I really can't help you with downloading issues.
* PLEASE do not take advantage of my willingness to share.  I will not customize this packet using different fonts, colors or personalized formats.
*This packet is for personal use only!  You may use this for your own preschool class or in your own home.  You may never sell any part of this packet.
* There is a wealth of ideas on the web, and I compiled lots of fun ideas combined with my own.  Check the credits section for more great blogs and sites!
Credits
Clip art designs and/or fonts copyright Dianne J Hook. Used with permission from DJ Inkers. I could not share ANY of these cute fonts and clip art with you except for their support!  Thanks guys!

I would LOVE to hear about your learning fun!
Good luck!

You can find other printable Mommy School packets here:

Sunday Snippets & Giveaway Winner

Happy weekend!!
I hope you are soaking in every minute of relaxation!  Sleep in.  Take a break and treat yourself to a bubble bath.
For this week's Sunday Snippets, I wanted to share some bits and pieces of our Dr. Seuss play date this week.  Our Seuss celebration was definitely the highlight of our week!
 Little Man needed a bit of bribing to wear his feathery blue "Thing 2"hair.  But he did it!  He was a little grumpy... but he did it!
Like any good celebration, a lot of yummy food was involved!  Of course I managed to connect  it to learning somehow!
* We did the Dr. Seuss graphing that I shared here.
* We made cat-in-the-hat snacks using gummy lifesavers and frosting layered on Ritz crackers.
*We made "green eggs and ham" to spell out our names.  Not edible, but deliciously fun!  I got this idea here.
* Of course the birthday celebration wasn't complete until we sang and ate cupcakes.
* We made green eggs and ham treats using white chocolate, green M&M's, and pretzels.  I got this idea here.
To celebrate Dr. Seuss' ABC, we drew letters of the alphabet in shaving cream.  Little man wasn't so sure about getting messy, but his cousin loved it!
I found these adorable Dr. Seuss foam stickers at Michael's.  I created these little Dr. Seuss place mats and the boys chose their favorite Dr. Seuss books and characters to decorate them. These turned out so cute!
 Of course Horton the Elephant had to make a special appearance!  (I am determined to have a Dr. Seuss play room someday!)
Until next year...
Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss!

Readers’ Request: Create Your Own Subway Art

Subway art is hot, right?!
Well even I didn't realize how hot.
My inbox is FULL of comments and questions concerning this birthday subway art for Little Man's big Toy Story birthday bash.
Well, you asked for it... you got it!
Here is a little Photoshop tutorial.  You can easily create your own subway art with just a basic knowledge of Photoshop.  (By the way, I use Photoshop Elements, and love everything about it!  I don't think I will ever upgrade to the full version of Photoshop... Elements does the job for me!)
Start out by creating a new blank file in Photoshop.  You can customize the size.  I made my file 16x20 because I wanted to print it at this size.  I set it at 300 ppi (pixels per inch) so I was sure to have high resolution.
This is how your file will look.  I chose not to have a background color, so I left the background as is.  You could certainly have a colored background by filling it with the Paint Bucket tool.
Using the text tool, I started typing the lines.  I chose some Toy Story slogans as well as some slogans unique to Little Man.  I chose to type some lines in a "rainbow" effect with all 3 colors.  (You can change the colors as you go up at the top of your screen.) But most lines just use one color--the red, yellow, or blue.
I didn't pay a lot of attention to sizes of my fonts as I went along.  I would type my line, and then use the "Move" tool to drag my words to the proper size.  I was just careful to line up the beginning/end of each line so they were flush with each other so it would look like this...
I continued typing in all of my phrases and slogans, a line at a time.  I varied my colors in a pattern of blue-yellow-red with a few rainbow lines thrown in here and there.  It was a matter of trial and error to see how many total lines I would have room for.  I knew I wanted his name to stand out a lot, so naturally this was easy to make larger because it was so short.  I tried to vary the longer/shorter lines to get the right flow.
I actually decided to make one more NEW blank file (also 16x20), dragged my completed image inside, and then adjusted the size so it was just barely smaller.  It was important for me to have a bit of "wiggle room" around those edges.  I wanted the whole image to be centered on the page and I definitely did NOT want the edges to get cut off when printed.
Last step:  Just save the file as a JPEG image and save it in a location you can find easily when uploading it to your favorite photo printing shop!  I printed my image at Costco, threw it in a frame, and I was done!
Several of you have asked what fonts I used for this project. Here is a font profile from the project:
If you google any of these fonts, you can find them easily available for free download. I am a font-a-holic for sure.  Isn't it wonderful that so many are available for FREE?!
If you are creating your own Toy Story themed subway art (like me), here is the color profile I used for this project.  You can use the color codes to get the same exact shades I used.  (I matched mine to a digital Toy Story scrapbooking kit.)
Let me know if you still have any more questions.  I hope this helps you to venture out and create your very own subway art!  You can do it!
Have a great weekend, my friends!
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