Category Archives: Crafts

Camping with the Buddy Leash!

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I am excited to say, that in just a week both the Littles will be attending their very first camp! They are both excited for it as they will be gone for 5 days with their friends from church. Little Miss though, is also nervous. She is rather attached to us and has never spent the night anywhere away from family. She is a bit OK with it because she knows Little Man will be there. We have discussed the menu with the camp and will be sending the necessary foods to adhere to her food allergy needs. But recently a new concern came up for her…. The beloved Big Kitty.

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The Snowmen Family ~#craft

I love doing crafts with the kids. I must admit, I have zero crafting abilities. I can come up with something once in a blue moon but it may not look the greatest or work the way it is suppose to. But for some reason I felt like crafting the other night. We do not have a fire place so I do not have a place to hang our stockings. I wanted to try to create something that I could use. This is one of those- looks cute but isn’t working the way I want situations lol.

I have a slight snowman fetish. I have snowmen every where so when I found my large clothes pins from Oriental Trading I knew exactly what I wanted to do!

What you need is some giant clothes pins and some acrylic paint. I painted one side of the pin white, painted the top black, then painted on the face, scarf and buttons. Since I didn’t have orange I simply mixed yellow and red paint together. I used a fine brush for the face and buttons but a wide brush for the black and white paint. It was simple. Took me about 2 minutes for each snow man.

This craft was so simple and easy. My kids had a blast and are asking to make more! Now the hard part- to figure out how to make them work. I was going to place them on the window but the weight of the stocking is to heavy. They can be really cute card holders or picture holders (which is what I originally got them to make). I am thinking I am going to find a garland, maybe blue & silver) and “hang” them on that with the stocking. That way I can hang it on the wall or across the window. I will figure it out one way or another!

You can find this craft along with many other crafts, recipes and other goodies on our Celebrate Christmas Blog hop so be sure to check it out!

Fall Crafts!

I love doing crafts with my kiddos. But I will be honest- I have zero crafting capabilities! I am not that creative. But I had to come up with something cute for Grandparents day at my kids’ school. We had to some how make a center piece using pumpkins or gourds and other “fall” type things. After seeing what students brought in last year I knew I needed to step up my game!

Thanks to Oriental Trading Company (sponsor) I was able to help my kids create two really cute pumpkins!

These were really simple to do! The kids were really excited to do this. And it was simple where I could sit back and relax! Or well- sit back and take pictures. All they had to do was peel the stickers back and place them on the pumpkins! The results: an adorable owl and kitten! I love how my kids ran with it too. My son added legs to his owl, my daughter added fur to her kitten. They were perfect!

But I didn’t want to stop there. Now this is something I wish I would of came up with! Fleece Tie Pillows! This would be simple to make- just cut out a square and then cut some strips on the edges and tie together. Here are ones I received from OTC:

Now if you are like me and lacking crafting skills OTC has a pillow kit all ready for you! It came with 6 pillow kits. Each kit had 2 pieces of fleece already cut and a bag of stuffing (aka batting). All I had to do was go through and tie all the slits together then fill with the batting. Since I do not need 6 of the same pillow I took one to school for one of my special ed students to work on. My kids will make two and who knows what I will do with the other ones!

So there you go. Some cute alternatives to carving pumpkins (we don’t do Halloween so this was way better) and a fun fall craft for your kids to do!

Have fun!

~I received the above products to help with the crafting in exchange for reviewing them. No other form of compensation was exchanged. Regardless the above thoughts are my own and honest opinions!~

Oriental Trading Company Review

It’s craft time! We love doing crafts in our house. We are always coloring or painting something. Especially on rainy days!

Today I want to introduce you to a wonderful company called Oriental Trading Company (OTC). It started with just a family gift shop owned by Harry Watanabe in 1932. Over the years he built the company up to other Novelties and gifts. By the 50’s it was known as a major supplier to US Carnivals. By the late 70’s when his son, Terry because president and made it the go to party supply place for schools, churches and even homes. Now they offer over 40,000 products through catalogs and online sales making ordering supplies for business, non profit organizations and more easier then before! While the Watanabe’s have since passed the torche the family fun feel has not changed one bit!

Ok so I may be a bit biased because the company was started and still operates in my hometown of Omaha, NE (and I worked there back in the day). But this company has a lot of fun and affordable items! Their catalogs no consists of

  • Oriental Trading- Novelties, toys, party supplies and more!
  • Terry’s Village- Affordable home decor, accent and holiday accessories 
  • Crafts: crafts for kids for every occassion!
  • Inspirations- Religious themed gifts and novelties
  • Party- the name says it all!
  • Hands on Fun- For the classroom!
  • Scrapbooking- unlimited supplies for your scrapbooking needs
  • Sensational Beads- if you are into creating jewelry for beads this would be great for you!
  • Wedding- help making your wedding planning a bit easier with decorations and favors for showers, the reception and more!
When I worked there back in high school (I wont give years because that will tell my age) I remember being in awe over all the had to offer and they didn’t have HALF of these catalogs. Terry’s Village was just being released and the products are gorgeous and amazing. Then of course the original OTC catalog was always fun to look at and Inspirations was perfect for churches!
I received some crafts to do and I can not wait to get started on them. I received some mom’s day cards that kids can put hand prints on and some large clothes pin that you can make to look like a flower. But I also received some items for the dad’s. I am thinking my son’s Tiger Cubs may need to work on their Art Belt loop and have some fun! 
You can check out the great products from Oriental Trading Company on their website. There you can requests catalogs and start planning your next event! You can also find them on:
~I received the above products in order to facilitate a review. No other form of Compensation was exchanged. Regardless the above thoughts are my own and honest opinions. ~

DIY Fall Decorating Ideas

It is that time of year again! Thanksgiving celebration and fun fall festival. Decorate your table using pumpkins and squash and leaves! My kid’s school is doing a Grandparent/Special Friend day and each child was allowed to bring in a table decoration for the lunch. There were so many cute ideas but I wanted to share some of the ones that stood out to me. I did not create any of these but I do envy those who did! I wish I was this creative!

Make a cake! The details on this was amazing! And yes that is Cinderella on top!

Jen thought this was the best one! 

two great ideas! Use Potato Head parts like this little pumpkin. The owl is another favorite of mine!

Captain America to the rescue! 

Have an old pot? turn it into a scarecrow head!

This made a really cute goose! 

Add some flare! Simple glitter sticks did these! According to the first grader who made one of them- just take the glitter stick and rub it all over! 

Another simple pumpkin. Painted black then us tacs to turn it into a spotted ball of fun!

There you go! A bunch of fun for the family and cute creative ideas! Have fun!

~I was not paid for this posting! I did not create any of these just thought I would share some creative decorations that were donated to my kid’s school for a special day!~

D-I-Y Lego Cake

I was really nervous going in making my first decorative cake. Sure I have baked plenty of cakes before with your quick frosting job. But I have never really “decorated” a cake before. So I went simple! This Lego Brick cake was a simple as you can possibily get! It helps that I cheated and used a cake mix (Duncan Hines since my son is not GF). Sorry I thought I had more step by step photos

What you need:
2 boxes of cake mix (prepared)
a 9 X 13 cake pan (1/4 sheet)
mini muffin pans (Wilton Recipe Right 24 Cup Mini Muffin Pan)
Buttercream Frosting

I prepared the cake mix together in one bowl. I filled the 9X13 pan till it was 3/14 full (if not more to make a deep cake). I then poured the rest in to the mini muffin pan (got about 12 mini muffins or more). Bake according to the directions of the cake mix.

Let the cake cool in the fridge over night. This will make frosting the cake easier so that it will not crumb up.

The next day make up your frosting. Frost the 9X13 part first. Cut the tops off of 6 mini muffins and place the lower halves ontop of the frosted part. Refridgerate for about 20-30 minutes to set the frosting and make it so the knobs do not crumb. with a butter knife finish frosting the knobs.

You can leave it as is or write on it. My son really wanted his name and Happy Birthday writen on the cake so my Dad delivered and finished decorating for me:

My daughter has already put in her cake order for her birthday in January. So I guess it is time to start looking for Hello Kitty stuff so I can plan ahead!

D~I~Y Curtains

Jenny and Danny’s curtains. Princess and Cars of course

So awhile back I made these cute simple curtains to help block out some of the sunlight in my kid’s rooms. These really took no time at all and only cost about $20/room.

Over the past week I decided to put to use some fabric I bought for $3 for the whole bolt. I thought it was lovely and would of made a gorgeous day gown for reenacting. Mental note: check material type before buying!

loved the color and the pattern but it is a poly blend which is a no no for 1860’s

Since I couldnt use it as I intended I have spent this week using it to make curtains for our new house! I have done 3 so far and have 4-5 more to go! I hope I have enough fabric for them!

These are really simple to make. Pick out the fabric you want. Measure the window size (length & Width) and cut out the fabric (if you have a wide fabric cut it in half to form 2 curtains). For the kid’s curtains I made sure I did it a little more neatly. I hemmed the tops of the curtains. The with the fabrics touching each other with the face sides I sewed the two sides and bottoms (like a giant pillow case), turn right side out. Cut out on the extra fabric some strips and fold in half (right side together) sew a small seam and turn right side out. Place evenly across the top of the curtain in between the two fabrics. Sew across the tops.

Close ups of how I did the “hooks”

The other way you can do it (which is the more sloppy quick way) is just take a single layer of fabric. Hem all sides. Cut some fabric to make loops and then sew the loops onto the back side of the curtain. I am sure you can make it look just as nice this way too but the ones I am doing like this are just a make shift curtain until we get our acreage.

If you want I would be willing to negotiate a price of making these for anyone that would like some. I know it will need to be cost of fabric & shipping, driving to get the fabric (closest walmart or fabric store is at least 30 minutes away) and probably the cost of my time. They would be the double layer curtain like my kid’s. Just contact me to discuss this option.

Bird House Fun!

With my son being out of school for spring break this week I had to come up with something fun to do. One of the things we did was paint some premade bird houses. I found these at Michaels for $4.99 each. I already had all the paint we needed so I also picked up a few prepainted decals for $0.99 each to glue on.

I first sprayed the birdhouses with some primer so the paint would soak right into the wood. The next day I let the kids have at it!

They both were so serious and focused! It amazes me how the simple things get them so quiet lol. They started out by painting on a base coat. We let them dry over night and then put on some details. I sprayed them with a sealer with a gloss finish. The next day we used crazy glue to place the decals

I love to see some of the things the kids come up with. While these may not attract birds I find them extremly beautiful! Jen has been trying to catch birds for the past few weeks so she is excited to think that a bird will be able to go into her home (the flower bird house) and stay dry and warm.