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Monday, May 21, 2018

I like to give Teacher gifts at the end of the year. Most of the time, I like to give a gift card. But, when I give gift cards, I like to add a little personal touch, and I think these ideas are a good inexpensive way to make your gift more personal without breaking the bank! These are fun gifts to add with a gift card or to just give alone!
Hand Soap and Lotion: You can download the print from the original pin that says “Hands Down, you’re the best teacher around” and just attach it to a hand soap and/or lotion!
Nail Polish: “Thanks for being a toe-tally awesome teacher”. This would also be cute with a gift card to get your nails done! The tag can be downloaded here.
“Orange you Glad it’s Summer: Fill up a fun little gift with all kinds of orange items.
You can then add this tag
Plant: Plants are so cute and SO easy to take care of. This cute tag saying “Thanks for helping me grow” is perfect with a fun house plant! 
iTunes gift card holder: This clever gift card holder says “Thanks for an app-solutely fantastic school year” and is PERFECT to add a personal touch to iTunes gift cards! You can download the holder here.
Summer gift tag: This gift tag reads “All year you have worked hard to make learning fun! So now it is your turn to relax in the sun!” It is a really cute tag to put on a summer hammock and fun cup! You can download the tag on the original pin.
Favorite Book: You can give your favorite book, or have your kids select their favorite book to give their teacher. This bookmark is a fun way to personalize your gift. You can download it here.

Happy Summer!

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Thursday, February 15, 2018

Arm Knitting Blanket

This fun blanket is all over social media. Probably because it is pretty fun to make and SUPER cozy!
It will take you about an hour (if you can figure it out the first time), but once you start, you can’t stop so make sure to carve out time to be able to finish!

Arm knitting comes in 4 simple steps and I used a combo of 2 pins to figure out how to do it! I used this pin: http://www.simplymaggie.com/arm-knit-a-blanket-in-45-minutes and this pin: https://placeofmytaste.com/arm-knit-blanket/

Item needed: Premier Couture Jazz Yarn. I bought mine on Amazon for $46 for 6 skeins. She uses 8 but I couldn’t find something in less than a 6-pack and with my track record, I didn’t want to buy another 6… I am better at ruining things than I am at successfully making them! 

1. Casting: You will want to do 18 stitches, I did 17 since I had a little less yarn.
So… This should be easy. BUT, it took me 1 hour to figure it out. I could not get it! I ended up figuring out by doing it a little different from the video. I hope I can describe it well!
- Create a slip knot and put it on your right arm. For this knot, you will want a tail that is about 2.75 “arm widths” long. (I am so technical) 
- Hold the “working yarn” (the yarn attached to the skein) in your left hand in a “V” shape on your left hand.

- Loop the yarn around your thumb.
- With your right hand… go through the loop on your thumb, grab the “tail” and pull it through. Stick the loop made from the tail on your right arm! 
**NOTE: This process alone took me an hour to figure out. This is how coordinated I am**
Keep repeating this step until your blanket is as wide as you would like it. I made mine 17 stitches wide. 

--You will only do this for one row --
2. Knitting: You will want to do about 35 rows of this. 
- To knit, you pick up the “working yarn” with your right hand then let one loop that has been cast on your right arm go over the working yarn loop. Now take this new working yarn loop and put it on your left arm. **Keep these stitches tight (but not so tight you can’t feel your arms because there is no blood flow (experience speaking here) **
- Repeat this step until all the stitches on your right arm are now on the left. 
- Now repeat this step going from the left arm back over to the right. 
Keep repeating this step until your blanket is as long as you would like. 

3. Cast off: 
- Knit 2 stitches from one arm to the next. (Like before)
- Slip the first stitch over the last stitch. This will leave you with just one stitch left on your arm. 
- Knit 1 stitch from one arm to the next so you have 2 stitches on the other arm again and repeat slipping the first stitch over the last stitch. 
Repeat this until you have 1 stitch left. 
- Cut off the working yarn, pull it over and tie a knot. 

You can hide the tails by braiding them into the blanket. 

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Monday, January 8, 2018

Shadowbox Project for all Seasons!

For the new year, I was hoping to find a cute pin that I can do throughout the year for each holiday. 

I was so excited when I found this website! I used to own a kit club company (A Page 4 all Seasons), so I have a love for the simplicity of ordering kits! 

This Shadowbox kit is sold monthly by Paisleys and Polka Dots, and it is just enough crafting to quench my thirst for creativity without overwhelming me and my busy life! I was excited to order the January and February kit. 

Items needed are:
Paisleys and Polka Dots Seasonal Kit https://paisleysandpolkadots.com/index.htm ($20)
Magnetic Shadowbox https://paisleysandpolkadots.com/index.htm ($18)
Tacky Glue, Nail File, Sponge Brush, Ink Pad, precision files, orange marker, brown paint and White paint. I got all this from my house :) 

Instructions:
The kit comes with detailed instructions. Here are some tips I discovered along the way:
1. Place the wood pieces on the paper, trace and cut them to the shape of the wood. *When I do this, I don’t worry about being perfect because I then go through with a nail file and file the edges. In fact, I kind of like making the paper a little bigger, so it is filed down versus having wood show through. For tiny to reach places, you can use precision files.
2. Paint the wood pieces per the instructions. (This is easy peasy)
3. Use wood glue to adhere the paper to the fronts of the wood pieces. *You can also use mod podge as glue if that is what you have handy in your home stash!
4. Sand the edges of the paper. *Sand in a downward motion because if you sand in an upwards motion, you could lift the paper from the wood!
5. Distress all the edges with brown ink (optional). You may want to leave just the sanded edge because that puts a distressed white look around each edge. I usually think I am going to stick with the distressed white look and then use the ink if I messed up and need to hide a flaw. (Which is basically every project I do)!
6. Assemble all the wood pieces using tacky glue. Adhere the magnets to the back of each wood piece.
7. If you plan to store this project to use year after year, consider spraying it with clear matte spray. This is totally optional!
8. Add the twine, button, and greenery as shown. I did use a glue gun for the greenery because I am way too impatient to wait for E9000 (which you could use) to dry!

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