Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone! 

“Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who Christ the Lord.” Luke 2: 10-11

Thursday, December 22, 2011

More Christmas Package Wrapping Ideas

Have you wrapped everything yet?  Here are a few more ideas for creative wrapping.
For this one I hand cut a letter D from cardboard (a cereal box) and wrapped it in fuzzy string.  I created the pennant banner by handcutting triangles from scraps of paper, attaching them with pop dots, and added the string with glue.  I also glued on the button to attach the letter.

I love how these packages turned out!  They were for my fellow "tea committee" members, so I cut the tea flourish found on Damask Decor and simply adhered it to a kraft paper base.  I used my Crop A Dile to punch holes in the popsicle stick (easily) and strung a ribbon through (it's tied in the back).  I added the name with red pen and then sprayed a little shimmer over the whole thing.
This last one may be my favorite!  Just cover your package with plain wrap and let your little one do the decorating!  Little Miss H. put glittery stickers on for daddy and "signed" her name (the letter Hs).  So cute!

Monday, December 19, 2011

December Daily - Days 10 - 18

Here's my second round of December Daily pages.  It just works for me to print off a week's worth of photos and complete my pages in one day (as time allows).  Enjoy!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Christmas Mantle Sign

So excited to finish this yesterday!  I love how easy the project was (and I didn't spend a dime!) and it makes such a statement (literally) on our mantle.  I first saw the idea on Pinterest - thank you Red Letter Words!  - and wanted to make my own version.  First thing I did was rummage around in our garage for a suitable piece of scrap wood.  I lucked out and didn't even have to cut anything as I found a perfectly sized piece of luan.  I brushed it off (ewww- it had been in there awhile) and brought it into the house.  It sat on my mantle for a week or so before I finally got to bring it up into my craft room for its makeover.  I found some acrylic paints in my stash to use - a charcoal grey, country blue, and metallic gold.  I simply squirted the grey on first and brushed away! I kept it pretty dry and thin, so the wood shows through a little, too.  I added a little blue and gold, using the same brush.  It all blended together nicely for a weathered look.  I painted the star with more acrylic - a mustard gold - again with the dry brush technique.  I added a bit of yellow and crystal stickles for a bit of glimmer.  I cut my letters using my Cricut - Sophisticated (for "love") and Lyrical Letters.  I used some pages out of an old hymnal - Christmas hymns of course.  Then I laid them out on my board and mod podged them all in place.  The manger scene can be found it the Inspired Heart Cricut cartridge.  Love this project and love that it's a big reminder of the reason to celebrate Christmas!

Linking up to:

One Artsy Mama

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Wrapping Up Christmas Packages

I decided that I would be more creative with my packaging this year, so I only bought brown kraft paper and a roll of plain white wrap.  Here are a few things I wrapped this week using my Cricut and other "scrap" supplies.

#1 = kraft wrap, 2 layers of scrapbook paper, sillhouette cut from A Child's Year, red sheer ribbon.

#2 = kraft wrap, a doily, red ribbon; tag cut from Winter Woodland cartridge

#3 = white wrap, snowman cut from Winter Frolic, glitter glue, silver letters, a bit of white fleece glued on for the snowman's snowy hill

#4 = kraft wrap, white and blue scrapbook paper, silhouette cut from Christmas Village, black marker to outline; tag cut from Joys of the Season

I'll be posting some more little Christmas crafties soon, so check back!

all crafts Homemade Projects ~ Add Yours {12/13}

December Daily

Yeah! I finally sat down to work on my December Daily Album for this year.  My cover has been done for ages, but with the tea and just catching up around the house, the dailies were at the bottom of the list.  I finally printed off pics for days 1-9 and completed them last night and this morning.  I am using a red Fancy Pants Brag Book for my album.  I basically took off the binding and am leaving it off until I am done.  I just take from the pile of pages and use what I want for each day.  The Brag Book comes with three different types of pages - the single kraft page with journaling lines and red scrolls, the red pocket page, and the 4x6 photo sleeves.  I'm not worried about them being in a specific pattern or anything - whatever I feel like for that day is what I'll use. 
I really like the Christmas line from Teresa Collins and am using a lot of that.  I purchased the set of coordinating stamps, too.  I LOVE the deer motif and the rich reds.  But I'm also using lots of other things, including the Mrs. Claus's Kitchen Christmas Stack from DCWV and the O' Christmas Tree Recollections Signature Stack.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Christmas Tea Decor 2011

Our Invitation

This past weekend my church hosted a Christmas Tea.  It was our 4th Annual.  My friend and I dream up, design, and create the "ambiance" for each year.  We work really well together and this year was no different.  The church Fellowship Hall (the basement) was transformed into a "wintery woodland" of lights and wonder.  Combine that with the smells of delectable delights from a small crew of completely awesome bakers (that was NOT me) and some wonderful tea (that was me) and it was a magical afternoon.

We spent hours on the decorations and ornaments that we give away each year.  This year we also made wreaths as door prizes.  Our Cricut machines were in overdrive cutting our teacups for the invitations, little pinecones, snowflakes, and other little goodies.  My sewing machine patiently sewed 600+ snowflakes into 350+ feet of snowflake garland.

This year we used a lot of natural elements - pinecones, painted branches, cranberries, and even a few tree stumps to hold platters of goodies at the food table.  We also used a lot of donated and found items - fabric, antique sleds, old iceskates.  The photos do not do the entire room justice.  It was indeed wonderful, magical, and completely transformed into a woodsy winter wonderland.

We had near 130 ladies gathered around 16 tables, each decorated by a table hostess, and there was certainly no lack of creativity.  What an inspiring afternoon!  There was much to look at and admire.  There was much to smell and taste.  There were friends to laugh with.  And most importantly of all, there was a reminder as we enter this busy season, that Christmas is all about love - that wonderful, perfect, all-encompassing, overwhelming love - which came to earth so long ago.  We were reminded that Christmas is about Jesus, Our Savior, Our Redeemer.  No better way I can think of to begin this Christmas season!  Merry CHRISTmas to you!


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

More Christmas Projects: Layout, Magnet Clothespins, and Ornaments

Here are a few more Holiday projects for inspiration. 
I used the super-adorable papers from Echo Park's Holly Jolly Christmas line on all these projects.  Mixed in are some chipboard shapes from Little Yellow Bicycle and trims from My Mind's Eye.  I picked up all these products at Scrapdoodles in Fredericksburg.  They are so awesome there!

First, I LOVE this chevron paper!!!!  I cut it at 11 inches square, rounded the corners, and layered it on brown then white for my background.  The tree came from Designer's Calendar and my cricut.  The "wishes" title was cut using the Winter Woodland cartridge.  Then I just added layers of patterned paper and chipboard.  I couldn't resist cutting off a little pompom and tying it onto the chipboard frame with a bit of twine.  
Next, I've seen a lot of painted or covered clothespins around the blogs and on Pinterest and thought a set of them would be a cute little gift.  I made mine magnets and thought the recipient could use them to hang their holiday greetings or lists up on the fridge.  The EP die cut sheet had some perfectly sized little label/title cuts.  The labels were a bit shorter than the clothespin, so I just covered the tip of each clothespin with red glitter.  They sort of remind me of reindeer noses.  I attached self-adhesive magnet to the back of each clothespin and made a little card to keep them all together.

I couldn't stop using up all the paper, so I decided to make some ornaments, too.  I found a nice scalloped edge on the Elegant Edges Cricut cartridge and used my Gypsy to weld 2 together, along with a rectangle to make it wider.  Then I simply accordion folded it and glued it all together with the help of my hot glue gun and a small circle piece on the back for added stability.  The little pompom was then attached and some more twine so it's ready to hang on the tree, or wherever you need a splash of fun color.

Christmas Project - Paper Ornaments and Garland

I had lots of fun sitting down with some products from Scrapdoodles this past week.  I picked up a few sheets from the Twig line from Little Yellow Bicycle.  I really loved the white and brown with the bright blues.  I decided to make a garland from the 3 sheets I picked up and the little pack of mini pompoms.  I simply cut some scalloped circles out with my Cricut and then strung them together with the little pompoms using fishing line and a needle.   I tied the ends to a small piece of blue pipe cleaner that I bent and secured into a circle.  That way nothing slid off and the loops on each end make the garland easy to hang.  I did add some glitter glue across each of the circles as an after thought.  The fishing line was a bit slippery and the glitter glue I spread on the circles helped secure the line in place.  I think it will look great on a little mini Christmas tree with some blue or white lights.
I also made this awesome ornament (or tree topper) from some of the papers.  I cut several strips and stapled them together in the middle.  I then secured each flap down as I looped the ends toward the center.  I cut a snowflake with the Cricut and also made a simple mini accordion circle to stack in the middle.  I topped it off with another little pompom.  Hope you're having fun with paper this season!

Thanksgiving Day Kids Placemat

I saw this cute placemat idea on the Official Cricut Blog and set out to make my own version for Little Miss H. at the Thanksgiving table.  For mine, I first taped (on the back) 2 sheets of DCWV fall paper to create a 12x24 mat base.  I cut a white 10 inch square and centered it on the mat, then adhered skinny strips of patterned paper to mark the squares.  I chose fall-themed cuts from the following Cricut cartridges: Create a Critter, Designer's Calendar, and B is for Boy.  There's a spot to put her drink and a spot to lay out her utensils and I created a pocket from a clear envelope to hold the game pieces.  I then laminated the entire placemat with clear contact paper.  I laminated the playing pieces, too.  I think she'll like it and it is a good way to keep her at the table longer.  Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Monday, October 17, 2011

ABCs and 123s

Earlier this fall I decided I would start a "Letter of the Week" with H.  My philosophy behind this is simple.  It would give us a jumping point for activities for the week.  H. is almost 3 and like any 3 year old, I imagine, she likes to be busy.  Yes, we are definitely learning (H. is a genius :)).  Yes, we are producing beautiful works of art (H. is super talented :)).  Yes, we are having fun!  And there have been all sorts of added benefits I've discovered - like fun interactive fb posts, menu planning has become easier, it gives daddy something specific to ask H. about at the dinner table and H. loves to show what she's done or learned.

I'm following the letter order that my local schools use in Kindergarten.At the beginning of the week (okay, Sunday night) I start looking at a few homeschool and preschool websites for letter ideas.  I also have been posting on fb for ideas - my family and friends provide LOTS!  So far, we have gone through letters A, B, M, T, R, S, and N.  Here are a few of our favorite photos from our activities.  
M Box and "Monkeys Jumping on the Bed" magnet game.

Spider cookies

R is for Rainbow

R box with Peter Rabbit
2 Bs side by side to make a Butterfly.  H. decorated with Buttons.
T is for Tea Party!

R is for Rainbow Fish
S lunch: shoe, stars, strawberries, spinach
Each week I simply make a list of words for the week, look through H.'s toy bins, books, flash cards, etc. to put a box together.  I decide on at least one craft, but also print off coloring pages and dot-a-dot pages.  I'm not actively trying to get her to write letters (though she does some) - more just recognizing the letters and learning to associate letters with words, and later, reading.  I want this to be fun for her.  If she's not in the mood, I don't force her.  I leave the box out for her to play with all week.  Sometimes we really get into it, sometimes not so much.  I will try to post a weekly letter activity round up in the future, as well as a list of other helpful blogs and websites.