I’m Not Lucky, I’m Blessed {Printable}

St. Patrick's Day is just around the corner! We didn't do much "green" decorating at all this year, but I'm hoping to still bust out a few fun St. Patrick's Day activities this weekend to celebrate with Little Man.  (I'll share a few of my ideas at the end of this post.)

This week, I came up with a quick printable to celebrate St. Patrick's Day this year.

Honestly, I don't totally believe in luck.  Okay, maybe if it's something silly like finding a penny on the sidewalk or something.  But I am more inclined to feel blessed for something as silly as finding a good parking space!  And lately, I have felt very blessed!  Hopefully I'll be able to explain exactly why very, very soon!

Yes, this little guy is one of my greatest blessings.  I have always felt like my Little Man was a blessing meant just for me.  As you know, his Daddy travels every week for work.  That was one of my main reasons for starting a blog--so I could connect with people when I felt so lonely at times as a new Mom and sometimes a "single" parent.

This sweet Little Man has always been my little buddy.  I don't know how to explain it, but he just looks out for me.  Yesterday, he carried my basket at the grocery store because he insisted on being a gentleman.  He put away all his toys and set the table for dinner without even being asked.  I almost cried.  I just love this boy!

So I created this 5x7 printable in Photoshop and printed and framed it!

I used the cookie cutter tool in Photoshop to create a little shamrock out of one of my favorite pictures of Little Man.

All done!  Now I just need to make one with my sweet hubby, too!

If you would like to download this blank template, just use a shamrock cookie cutter or another shamrock pattern to trace around a picture!  Cut it out and paste it on.  You can download this blank 5x7 file here.

Here are a few more fun activities that we'll be doing this weekend:

I'm going to try out making scented shamrocks just like these ones at Education.com

I can't wait to turn our toilet water green, and those footprints will be a fun extra touch!  See the tutorial for perfect footprints at A Differentiated Kindergaten.

We'll print and play this Lucky Bingo found at The Crafting Chicks.

Just like last year, we'll probably have a family "Green Dinner" and get dressed up in funny green clothes! My Mom has quite the collection of fun green clothes!

I'll come up with some cute lunch--perhaps like this one with the footprints at Lisa Storms.

And of course we'll do our Treasure Hunt just one more time!

Wishing you lots of blessings and lots of luck!!

Have a fantastic weekend!

Shamrock Magnets

Hello friends!

First off, I just have to say that the Denver Bloggers Spring Soiree was incredible.  When I started blogging, I literally believed that I was the only craft blogger in Colorado.  Then little by litte, my Colorado crafting circle grew.  A small group of us met up at our new Ikea store last fall.  Now we have a Facebook page, To think that 115 people would come to Ashley's fantastic crafting meetup made me so happy! :) There's nothing like talking blogging with people who "get" it.   And to craft with people who genuinely love to create!  I think my poor husband is tired of hearing about it, but I really had a great time on Saturday.

I wil share more details just as soon as we get the photos!

Today I wanted to share one of the fun projects we made at the Spring Soiree:  These shamrock magnets!  I actually made mine yesterday!  I was so busy chit-chatting with new friends that I didn't make a single thing while I was there!  Luckily there were a few craft supplies left over!  So I snagged some and did my crafting at home.

I started out by creating a magnet board.  I took the glass out of and 8x10 frame and painted it with Martha Stewart magnetic paint.  I let each coat dry an hour and then gave it another coat!  I seriously love the new Martha Stewart paints.  I had to try it out on glass, and I was amazed that it really worked!  I recommend lots of coats!  This paint is definitely thick!  But it's meant to be painted over, so I was super messy!

We had many incredible sponsors for our Spring Soiree.  Pick Your Plum seriously hooked us up with all of the crafting supplies that we used for our crafting stations.  I snagged 6 of these wooden shamrocks.  Aren't they sweet?

I selected 3 kinds of scrapbook paper. I was loving the polkadots!

I traced each of the shamrocks and cut them out of the scrapbook paper.

I modpodged the paper on.  I couldn't resist distressing the edges too, and then gave them another coat of Mod Podge on top.  Then I hot-glued some magnets on to the back.  FYI... you will need very strong circle magnets to adhere to the magnet paint--especially through the scrapbook paper.

I added some scrapbook paper on top of the magnet board and slipped the whole thing into a frame!

All done!

I haven't done a whole lot for St. Patrick's Day, but these really make me happy!

I hope you're having a fabulous start to your week!!

Shamrock Pops with Printable Flags

We made it to Friday!  Where has the week gone?!

I have been super busy with preparations for the Colorado Blogger Spring Soiree!  I can't wait to have an official blogging meet-up here in lil' old Colorado.  Who would have thought?!  I'm giddy at the idea of it and can't wait to meet up with some of you tomorrow!!

I am finally getting my St. Patrick's Day act together.  Recently I raided my pantry and used up some leftover Valentine's Day candy to create these festive shamrock pops!  These were so.easy!

I am all about rainbows right now.  I am craving some bright colors and some springtime!  See those rainbow flags?   Yes, you can print those.  But first... let's make some shamrock pops!

So I raided my pantry and found these heart candies from Valentine's Day.  I had these left over from Little Man's ABC valentines.  (Although this would be even easier if you had a heart mold!  Because I realize that dipping chocolates in chocolate might be just a little bit silly!  So yes, use the mold.  Or a heart ice cube tray!)

My idea was combining 3 chocolate hearts to create a shamrock.

Here is what I did:

I melted some green candies.  I made sure it wasn't TOO hot so it wouldn't melt the chocolate!

I stabbed a small hole in the center heart.  Don't do what I did and just jam it inside the heart.  Use a fork.  It works better!

Then dip your 3 hearts in the chocolate.

Combine together and let dry on wax paper.  These held together surprisingly well!

Now decorate!  I covered up my messy dipping with some fun sprinkles !  Little Man even helped decorate a few.

These will be fun to give away to friends!

And don't forget these rainbow flags!

If you would like to print your own "Lucky Me" rainbow flags (you could even wrap these around a straw if you would like!), just click here to download the PDF.

We're feeling pretty lucky lately.  Good things are happening for us right now.

Have a fantastic weekend my friends!!

St. Patrick’s Day Treasure Hunt {Printable}

It's probably about time to start thinking about St. Patrick's Day right?  This weekend I started thinking "green."  Today I am sharing a fun and easy idea to do with your kids for St. Patrick's Day.  (Or before!)

Each year as a first grade teacher, I would leave daily notes from "The Three Green Stooges."  (Think Elf on the Shelf in leprechaun form!).  On St. Patrick's Day, the Three Green Stooges would leave one final note and lead my class on a treasure hunt leading to a pot of gold at the end.  So I decided to revamp this idea for Little Man.  Remember how we hunted for Pluto's Bones at his Mickey Mouse Birthday Party?  Well, this was his favorite game, and he is STILL talking about it!  So I knew he would love to go on another treasure hunt.

And I created these clues in printable form... so you can do this, too!

There are 10 clues leading to a pot of gold filled with prizes at the end.  I was thinking a little poetic, so these clues rhyme!   Some clues even require actions like hopping, running, walking backwards, etc.

After designing the clues in Photoshop, I printed out the clues, laminated them, and cut them apart.  Done!

I hid the clues around the house.  (I have to use a cheat sheet to do this because I always get confused at which clue needs to be hidden and where!  I'll show you my cheat sheet at the end of the post...)

Little Man couldn't wait to get started!

Daddy helped read the clues.

And finally, after lots of hiding and hopping, we found the pot of gold in the fridge!

Little Man was so excited to find his Pot of Gold filled with treats, gold coins (he asked me if he could put these in his Piggy Bank!), a new Matchbox car, and one last note.

We had so much fun, and we can do this over and over again!  (And I have a sneaky suspicion that we will!)

If you would like to go on your very own treasure hunt, then go print your own clues!

You can download the ten Treasure Hunt clues here or here on Scribd.

Plus I make a little cheat sheet so I know where each clue should be hidden and where it will take us!  Otherwise I always screw up hiding the clues!  If this helps you too, you can download the Treasure Hunt cheat sheet here.

Are you thinking green yet?

Have a great Monday!

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!

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!

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:

A decoration for TWO holidays!

I know!  I'm late!  I really don't like any holiday decorations after the fact, but I multi-purposed with this little decoration.  I saw this tutorial for photo blocks at How Does She and decided to make it work for 2 holidays! 
I made this side of the blocks for St. Patrick's Day with some green ribbon and glittery shamrocks.  **So I had 2 mini clothes pin all set for this project, and when I went to take pictures, they came up missing!!  So I just taped on pictures temporarily for these pictures.**  I have plenty of room for more kiddos as they come... for now, I just used a couple pictures of my precious little guy.

I decorated the opposite side of the 2 x 4 and blocks so it would work for Easter.  Don't you love the happy flowers for spring?!  All I have to do is flip everything around and voila!  I have a decoration for two holidays!!  I love multi-purposing!

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