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Tuesday, March 3, 2015

A few favorite life hacks

Pinterest is full of life hacks. I have been dying to see if some of these work!  Some do… some sooooo don’t!
“Orange Roll”
This is a good and mess free way to cut an orange
Slice both ends off.  
Cut a slit where the skin is.
Unroll!
Shoe holder water bottle storage!
I am always so sick of my water bottles being all over the place!  Check out my mess: 
I saw this idea and love it so much I just had to share!
Boiled egg peeling
Here is the original pin
For this life hack, you put 1/2” of water in a cup.
Put your egg in there, shake it up and voila!  
Your egg should be totally peeled. 

Uh.. not sure what happened here but definitely did not peel my egg!
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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Handmade Valentines Boxes

Ah!!! The joy of hand made valentines boxes.  I thought it would be “super fun”  to have my kids help me make these boxes.  Although I ended up with really “authentic” boxes (don’t most parents make them themselves, pretending the kids made them?), I often felt it would be much easier to do them myself… Hence the reason I dread these boxes each year :) 
I couldn’t seem to capture a great picture of this box.  And I think I know why… There is just not a great angle, haha!  The whole thing is silly. But, I do think it is original and kids would love it!

Items Needed:
white craft foam (8.5x11 sheet is fine)

black craft foam (2 8.5x11 sheets or 1 11x18 sheet)
2 sheets of 12x12 Gray paper or gray wrapping paper
Oatmeal box
glue gun
Black Duct tape

Instructions:
From the white craft foam, cut:
2 circles…I cut them to be the size of the bottom of my salt shaker, super strategic.  Maybe about 1 1/2 inches? 
Then, for the teeth I just cut a 4x6 inch rectangle and then cut down the middle the “zig zag” that were teeth.  You can snip them to have more character or just leave them boring…. like mine.

From the black craft foam, cut:
Smaller black circles for the pupils in the shark eyes… this would be the top of a highlighter lid for us, maybe a 3/4” circle for those who plan to actually make this look good. 
shark fin… freehanded this one (as if that isn’t obvious… the more imperfect it is, the more “character”… I have to tell myself this often)
shark tail… again, my daughter free handed this one.  I thought she did a terrible job but then I learned a shark fin is smaller on the top then on the bottom.  Who knew!  See… valentine crafting is also educational.

Wrap the oatmeal can with the gray paper.  Uh, we ran out so we didn’t do the circle on the back, but you should probably do that too. 

Glue the eyes to the can.  Glue the teeth to the inside of the can.  Be sure you try to glue them behind the “lip” of the top of the can or else your shark might have really big buck teeth.  I only know this because I might have had to fix mine a time or two.  I almost left it because I thought “Hey!  There is a chance this shark was a thumb sucker or something!” But then I thought, the whole thing looks so silly I better at least put the teeth in right.  
To attach the fin and tail, I used black duct tape, cut in half and put on either side of the fin and tail.  
This box was inspired by the hope I was having to be able to float above the inversion here in Utah!

Items Needed: 
Balloon
Cute straws
basket
1 yard of lace (you may end up with extra) 
washi or masking tape
glue gun

Instructions:
Glue the straws to the 4 edges of the basket.  
Blow up your balloon (I had to make Ashley do it, I can’t blow up balloons… weird, huh)!
Glue the straws to the balloon…. I know, I know… this is scary.  Just put the glue on your straw, let it cool off a bit and stick it to the balloon!  I am with ya… it does seem like the balloon should pop but it didn’t, who knew!
Using either masking or washi tape, tape the ribbon to the balloon as shown, this hides the mess you made trying to glue the balloon to the basket :) 

Items needed:
I bought 2 feet of red felt off the bolt and it could have made 2 envelopes

pom pom  ribbon, lace, scalloped felt or whatever you think would be fun to put on the edge (optional) 
velcro dots
white embroidery floss and needle (optional) 
glue gun
Cut the felt into (1) 11x18 piece (this is the front of the envelope)  and (1) 11x9 piece (this will be the back of the envelope and the flap for the envelope opening!
For the 11x18 piece, fold it in half.  Now, you are going to cut the envelope point thing (I wonder if it has a title) from half the felt.  To make it easy, Just get a ruler and mark a dot about 1.5” down from middle point on the 11” edge (so the 5.5” spot).  Now, just draw a line from  this dot to the top of the folded edge (even I am confused at this point).  If you do this on both sides your point should be perfect!

Cut a little half circle in the top of the 11x9 piece of felt.  You do this so you can have it a little easier to stick your hand in.  Make sure you don’t see the cut out part outside of the envelope points.  (Yep, I did that too!)

Now, you can go the extra mile and decorate more by gluing lace, pom poms or whatever to the edge of the larger 11x18 envelope at this point.

Glue the 11x9 piece to the bottom of the 11x18 piece, fold the flap over and attach the velcro so you can have a closure.

Your envelope can be done at this point!  Or… you can really outdo yourself and stitch a white sticking around the edge with embroidery floss.
OK.. Can I just say? I was pretty excited about this one.  I really wanted to actually use this one for Brayden. He likes it, but that is proof he is very easy to please.  I do think I found some better ideas.

Items Needed:
Cereal or shoe box
I used Dixie snack portion cups… I would use the bottom of dixie cups?
glue gun
red spray paint

Directions:
Cut the slit in the top
Glue gun on your cups (I think the snack portion plastic cups were to raised and you could see the writing…I saw a pin that used dixie mini cups and cut the top to make it shorter and I am wondering if that is better)?  This pin looks like they used styrofoam or something but I didn’t want to have to glue paper on all that!
Spray paint the box


I hope you LOVE doing your valentine boxes.  I would love to see a version of yours or if you did something clever. 
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Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Handmade Valentine Day Cards

It was so fun to find some cute printables to make Handmade Valentines Day cards.  The best part is that the printable on these pins are free! 
Making this is so easy… you just print out the printable, cut it out, poke a hole in the mouth and stick a sucker on the back!  The downside… you have to cut out these valentines with scissors and you know… I’m lazy!  
This one is easy but again, you have to cut it with scissors…. so complicated :) The steps are pretty easy… cut the fishbowl, stick it in a bag with some swedish fish and then tie a bow on top!
This is easy enough!  Use a paper trimmer to trim the printable.  
You can also use the trimmer to cut a slit in the top and bottom of the side.  Slide your pencil in and you are set!  My son loves mechanical pencils at school so I used a mechanical pencil or you can use a cute one.
These are SO easy!  Use your trimmer to cut out these Valentines and the wrappers you can print from the original pin.  Wrap them around Hershey mini’s and tape the to the card!
The printable is super cute and I just bought this cute gumball machine for about $1.50 (you can put gumboils or a pack of gum in a baggie too!) I used a circle cutter to cut the circle and attached it!
So fun!  
But they didn’t have a printable so I made you one!  
{CLICK HERE for the printable}  
Just print out the printable, cut with your trimmer and add the cute 
strawberry fields tic tacs in a baggie!  
If you want to fasten it with a ribbon like I did, you can staple the ribbon on each side and then tie a knot.

Happy Valentines Day!  And...did I ever mention that I love you?   :)

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