Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Homemade Birthday Cards

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Sometimes we just need time to visit and relax. That's what I get when my dear friend comes to visit. We had a great time putting these cards together.
I am trying to send birthday cards to family members so I needed to stock up on them. I get the out, not always on time though so it is a life saver to have some already made and ready to go.
Girl cards are easy, boys well, they can be too they just take a bit more thought. I love the polka dots and bright colors of this one. The dotted edge added just enough to spiff it up a bit.
I LOVE this card. The bright pink. The sharp black. The crisp white. But mostly I love out the tack hangs free. It adds great dimension to go along with the flower. 
Now, if I could just see the smile on their faces. Of course that is probably for the $ in the card. ;-)
Yep, I am the favorite aunt! I earned it with each incentive!
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Monday, January 28, 2013

Homemade Hand Cream

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This is the best hand cream I have ever used. My sweet mother in law gave me a jar of it for Christmas. As a nurse my hands are always getting washed. Washing away all the germs and along with them all my natural oils. Add to that, living in the mountain desert and you have the perfect recipe for ultimate dryness.....
Until now!
Now I have the perfect recipe to replace the moisture and keep my hands soft, even at work.
16 oz Johnson's Baby Lotion (it must be this brand, any scent but this brand)
8 oz Vitamin E cream
8 oz Vasoline
 Just place it in your mixer and whip it nice and smooth.
I picked up some great little jars from Target....hmmm, guess it makes quite a bit more than I thought. Mason jam jars work great too!
Place the cream in a zip-lock bag.
Cut a small piece off the corner and you can easily squeeze it into the container of your choice.

Print this little tag to give with it and you have just made someone very happy!
Click on the picture to download it.

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Thursday, January 24, 2013

Blog changes...social media icons.

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 I have wanted to add social media tags to my blog for a while, tonight I boycotted chores and took the time to mess with html codes. The side bar was getting too cluttered.
There are several sites that have been generous to provide these codes but Make It Create have made some great tags in all shapes and colors and sizes. To top it off they have a great tutorial helping even the html inept such as myself make beautiful changes to my blog. So for all of you, I hope you enjoy the changes. To the ladies at Make It Create...
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Homemade washcloths

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Each Christmas our PTA has a Santa Shop for the kids to do some Christmas shopping of their own. The kids love it and get to learn about money and giving all at the same time. 
The problem this year was the stuff the company sent us was a lot of crap. Other items were spotted at the Dollar Store. *ugh* Really?!
So as frugal moms we said we can do better. So throughout the next year we are on the lookout for clearance items and fun gift ideas the kids can shop for. I am super excited! Just seeing the ideas and deals we have found already I think this will be the best Santa Shop ever!
Even my sweet hubby is watching out for toy deals. He picked up some great Lego sets for 1/4th the original price. SAWEET!~
I decided to focus my crafting efforts on the Santa Shop this year as well. I have several ideas and have others started.

Homemade washcloths are simple to make.
Put with a scrubbie and voila~ one great gift for mom or grandma.
They take about an hour each to make, maybe a bit more.
So during any down time; watching a movie with the family, waiting in car pool, waiting at the Dr office, waiting in car pool....I just pulled it out and do several rows. I have about 10 made already. I think I am gonna try to do about 30. It has been fun to try a couple of different patterns too. Such a  fun, easy, and portable craft. It feeds my addiction and fills a need at the same time. Perfect!
Check back for the next project next week. 
If you have any ideas I would love to hear. Just LMK! ;-)

ETA: This pattern came from a little book I picked up at Joann's but here are a couple of freebies some lovely ladies have shared. I am in love with the Waffle Crochet Spa Washcloth. It is simple and fast. Just my style!
 Waffle Crochet Spa Washcloth
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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

PTA board

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Last month we listed the wish lists of our teachers. 
This month I wanted to continue with that idea. The district supplies the basics but so many of our teachers go above and beyond. Several of them have 'reward stores' for the kids to shop at when they have earned points in the classroom. Others supplement with electronic educational games. Topping it all off is the neverending need for clorox wipes, especially in the peak of cold and flu season. 
Our board is right in the front lobby so lots of parents can see it as they come and go. 
Done in our school colors, red and blue, I used a pad of post-its. Each post-it note has an item our teachers have requested on it. When a parent see's a need they can fill they just take the note and return it with the requested item to the teacher. 
Hopefully by the end of the month the notes will all be gone, revealing the secret message underneath. (shhh, don't tell, it's a heart that says "we love West")
So far the teachers are loving it. Hope the parents are as well. It takes an entire community to raise a child. Together we are doing great things!
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Thursday, January 10, 2013

Make your own lanyards...

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While at Disneyland we decided to try the Pin Trading. You get to trade pins with all the cast members. There are soooo many you will never get bored. And if you don't get what you want there are oodles to choose from to purchase. We needed lanyards to put all our pins on and I didn't really want to buy them. So, like the self respecting, frugal crafter that I am I decided I could make some.
Lanyards really are easy to make. Just 15 minutes and you've got it. I don't use exact measurements when I craft but that is ok with these.
Gather your supplies:
Sewing machine
Key ring or other attachment piece
Scissors and thread Yeah, you get the point ;-)
I found this ribbon at Walmart of course and got 2 long lanyards from it. I had enough left that if I had made them a bit shorter I could have gotten 3. Just placed the ribbon around your neck to determine it's length. Remember to adjust for any little ones you will be making them for.
 Grab your key ring or whatever attachment do-dad you are using and thread the ribbon through it then sew a strong seam. This will be pulled on a bit so make sure to sew it well.
Use some pinking scissors to keep the end from fraying. If you are lucky enough to have a serger YEAH! Just serge the end before you fold it over the ring.
 Perfect! Just a couple of minutes and now you are ready to add your favorite pins.
This is Mr. Matthews. Can you tell who his favorite characters are?
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Monday, January 7, 2013

Are we there yet?

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We had a lot of traveling to do over the Christmas holiday....first to Idaho with family then we went to Disneyland for Christmas. We had a blast (although we will never again go at Christmas). We drove straight through. Our boys thankfully travel well but 11hrs is still a while. I found this idea and thought it would be fun. Turns out it was one of the best ideas I have used!!

It was simple too.
I used fun foam to cut out the states we would be traveling through. Our trip to see family is not nearly as long so I didn't do it for the Idaho trip. I glued it on the ribbon with a simple glue stick. Then I wrote the names of several bigger cities we would pass. 
We had a mini hot wheels car I put a piece of velcro on the back of. It was perfect for sticking to the room of the van. I pinned up the ribbon along the back. The boys got to take turns moving the car along. It was a great visual of how far we had come and how far we had left to go. Even Mr. Matthew would just look up at it rather than asking the beloved question: "Are we there yet?" He would start to ask then look up or be reminded by one of the older boys..."Nope, see Matthew we are just right here...we still have to go here..." I could not have planned it better! The boys did fantastic on that long drive. No fighting, no moaning, not too much restlessness and no "Are we there yets"!

Got any travel plans for the new year? This is a must do! I plan to do it for our next trip to Idaho even. It was just fun!
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Thursday, January 3, 2013

Pinewood Derby Pit Pass

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Yep, it's that time of year again. 
Pinewood Derby Races!
We have our Cub Scout Pinewood Derby coming up. It promises to be loads of fun. 
This year I am trying to be a bit more prepared in an effort to eliminate a bit of stress in life. With that comes prepping for pack meeting a little at a time. I have my ideas mapped out, now I get to start "building them". To start with...
The Pit Pass
 No one can get into the Racing Pits without a pass, right?! I plan to print them, laminate them and hang them from a checkered lanyard. I made these from a great kit "Do a good turn" by Scrap 'n' Pieces. You can pick it up here. It is a great kit to have on hand. If you don't have a photo editing program you can download the pass I made here.
I also made a certificate. 

Each of the boys will get one. I left it blank to fill in the reason that fits their car and a spot for their name. I want to be able to personalize them to each boy. This also helps plan for just those coming.
I think they turned out great. Now on to the next project prep....neckerchief slides.

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