Burlap Clip Frame

Hi!

It’s been awhile, but today felt like a great day to blog. It’s kind of thunderstormy outside, so why not craft!? With all of the tornado warnings we have been getting lately anyway, I prefer to stay home (because I’m a huge baby when it comes to wind). Besides, the other day I was driving in my car and all the music on the radio was so miserably terrible. Literally every station. You know the music sucks when you are flipping through channels and stop on a jingle to a commercial.

I also wanted to tell you something ridiculously stupid I thought to myself yesterday while I was driving. I was leaving the gym and in such a hurry to get home because I was going to be late for an appointment, and the light in front of me turned yellow, and I thought to myself, “I don’t have time for yellow lights!”…Now first off, I think what I wouldn’t have time for is in fact red lights, not yellows. Secondly, what a stupid thing to think to yourself haha. I just started laughing by myself because it seemed like a really pathetic thing to think. You with me?…no?

Burlap Clip Frame

So this is a simple and inexpensive way to make a fun frame! You get to pick whatever color, or colors, you want it to be and it will be different from your other frames! Plus, you don’t have to just use it for pictures, you can put your kid’s artwork in it, reminder notes, a letter or poem etc.

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What You Need:

  • Frame (with or without glass- you will be discarding the glass, but do want a backing) – Goodwill is a great place to get these frames for cheap
  • Burplap (they have these in the scrapbooking section at craft stores in 8 x 10″ sizes- otherwise you can buy a large burlap sheet and cut out the size you need)
  • Paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Alligator Clip
  • Hot glue

Directions:

Step 1: If you are shopping for a frame, keep in mind that it can be an artwork frame or any other kind of frame you find. Take the, more than likely, ugly centerpiece out of your frame. Look at what was in mine:

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Step 2: Accept that some people like certain things that you will NEVER understand.

Step 3: My frame was an old ugly brown type of wood. Because it was wood though, I didn’t need to sand it. If yours has some sort of finish or gloss on top, you may need to sand it to get the new coat of paint to stick. I liked the unfinished wood look that it looked like after I painted it, so I left mine that way.

Step 4: Take the backing and everything out of the frame and lay it on newspaper to paint. Paint!

Step 5: Take the burlap and cut it to the size of the backing. Hot glue it to the backing. Put glue around all the edges, and a little in the center. You don’t want to use too much because it will seep through or shows bumps.

Step 6: Once everything is dry, put the backing with the burlap glued on, back into the frame. Glue a little strip of hot glue on the back of the alligator clip.

All done!

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Jewelry Box Pillow

Heyo!

Have you ever noticed that no matter how you put your headphones away, the cord is always tangled? I think about this everyday at the gym. I normally take my time wrapping the cord around my ipod so that it doesn’t get tangled and I even leave a little bit of slack around where the headphones plug in so I don’t ruin the cord around the plug. But it’s all for nothing. I honestly could just throw them in a ball in my bag and they would come out just the same. It just doesn’t make sense..!

..Similar, actually, to how I siphon my dads eye drops when I’m running low instead of just buying a new bottle. I’ve been doing this for years with my same little bottle that fits so nicely in my makeup bag. But, it too just doesn’t make sense..

Something that does make sense though is turning music up in the car loud enough that I can’t hear myself sing! πŸ™‚

Jewelry Box Pillow

If you’re like me, you might take your wedding/engagement (what do I call it?!) ring off to shower every now and then, or maybe it’s your earrings, or a nice necklace, or perhaps its just a cheap blingy ring you got at Forever 21 that will turn your finger green if you get it wet. Either way your jewelry sometimes ends up on the bathroom counter because you forgot to leave it in your room. Based on the fact that I once slide something down the bathroom counter which accidentally knocked my cell phone into the toilet, I know that accidents can happen. And important things can get lost in the sink drain, or the toilet as the case may be. So. I came up with a simple little storage idea for my rings, earrings and necklaces for when I shower!

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What you need:

  • Jewelry box – I got mine at Michaels for $2
  • Fabric- only a few inches…depending on the size of your jewelry box (I used 3 different colors)
  • Tissue paper for stuffing
  • Needle
  • Thread
  • Scissors

Instructables:

Step 1: Measure your box.

Step 2: Cut strips of fabric that are slightly longer than your box. This is so that the fabric can form the vertical edges of the pillow as well.

Step 3: Lay the strips out flat (I used three different kinds). Sew strip 1 and strip 2 together on one edge. Then sew strip 3 to the now large strip of 1&2 on one edge. They should be laying flat in a row.

Step 4: Repeat which three new strips. This will form the bottom of the pillow.

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Step 5: Sew the outer edges of the top three strips to the outer edges of the bottom three strips. Once you’re done you should have a full circle of fabric that you could stick your hand through like a bracelet.

Step 6: Sew one end of the gap closed. Sew the strip 1 on the top to strip 1 on the bottom, etc. Repeat with 2 and 3.

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Step 7: Sew the other end of the gap closed, ONLY ON strip 1 on the top to strip 1 on the bottom and strip 2 on the top to strip 2 on the bottom. Do not sew strip 3 on the top to strip 3 on the bottom yet. Leave your needle and thread attached.

Step 8: Stuff some tissue paper inside. Use scissors to help pack it in. You can use cotton, plastic bags, stuffing…anything. I liked the tissue paper so I could compress it down if it was too tall for my box.

Step 9: Finish sewing strip 3 on the top to strip 3 on the bottom.

Step 10: Insert your new pillow into your jewelry box and rest assured that your jewelry is now safe when you leave it in the bathroom.

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Love In A Bottle

So today I’ve decided I’m going to start off by sharing with you something I love and something I’m afraid of (other than snakes…and car washes):

Fear:

Opening champagne bottles. I recently had a fun movie night with a friend, and intended to bring some wine, but instead I grabbed champagne. Which was fine. It was good. But opening it was my least favorite part. It’s actually scarier than opening cinnamon rolls because you risk the cork flying into your eye. And normally when champagne is had there are lots of people around, one of which might be a guy, or a less scaredy-cat girl who could have stepped in. But not this day. Fortunately, all disasters were adverted. My first time opening champagne was a success! Hooray! Although that doesn’t mean I learned from this experience and will be any less scared next time…

Love:

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Method hand soap in Waterfall. Not only do I love the color, but I actually get excited to wash my hands because of how much I love the scent. They aren’t paying me to say this, not in money nor hand soap (unfortunately), but I just felt compelled to let everyone know about how much I love this soap. Do not be disillusioned that this smells like that cliche “water” scent that candles take on. It’s much better. I haven’t been this excited to wash my hands since I bought Tom a cool oil can mechanism soap dispenser for his apartment. Can you imagine anything better than this hand soap IN that dispenser??? oh my..

Love In A Bottle

Speaking of love, how about a little love in a bottle?Β 

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What You Need:

  • Clear bottle- $1.50 from Michaels
  • Wine cork + knife (if it doesn’t have a stopper)
  • String
  • Hot Glue
  • Pink or red paper – or color on white paper
  • Gift tag

Instructables:

Step 1: To make a cork if you don’t have one- Get a wine cork, hopefully one that is close to fitting. Using a knife carefully cut down the outside of the cork. Once you have it thin enough to fit, slice the height of the cork down to fit your bottle.

Step 2: Fold the colored paper in half and cut a heart shape out, so you end up with two identical pieces. Crumple a little bit of the remaining colored paper in between the two pieces so it becomes 3D. Glue everything together. Gently fold the edges of the heart around the crumpled paper so you can’t see it. You can also just go the route of making an origami heart, but I felt like doing it my way πŸ™‚

Step 3: Depending on what color string you have you may have to color it with a sharpie to

make it visible. Mine was light gray so I had to color it. Measure on the outside approximately how far down you want the heart to dangle, and add a tiny bit extra to account of gluing.

Step 4: Put a tiny bit of glue at the middle of the heart and gently stick your piece of string into it. Do the same thing with the center of the cork, and stick the string to it.

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Step 5: Decorate your tag.

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Coffee Filter Garland

Hi there!

So remember a few weeks ago when I confessed to you that I was drawing centerpiece designs in my workout journal at the gym, and we agreed that it was not pathetic? Well I had another not-pathetic gym moment. I should probably start calling this blog “Gym Diaries of an Insane Girl.”

So I just got done watching the series finale of this BBC show called Arthur Merlin (without fail I always accidentally call it Arthur [one of the main characters on the show], why would typing be any different). So I’ve watched all 5 seasons on Netflix, and it was always entertaining enough, made me laugh at the very least, but Tom dipped out around season 2. Before I get to my point, I should probably let you know that I always get really attached to characters in my show and start feeling like we’re friends. And when they go on season breaks, I always start missing my friends. So I tuned back into Arthur Merlin once I got back on Netflix and my friends and I had had a long hiatus from one another so I was so excited to see how they were doing in Camelot. I was very pleasantly surprised that I was totally addicted to the last season. And then came the series finale… **Spoiler alert!** and Arthur dies!! My favorite character friend! And I was devastated. I cried. I called Tom to tell him about it and due to the pathetic-ness of that statement of me crying being true, I spoke into the phone strategically so as not to imply I was crying. Because that would be embarrassing…………

The next day rolled around and I was able to put it behind me. Until I was at the gym. For some reason I started thinking about my character friend’s death, and how sad my other character friend Merlin was. And my eyes started watering up in between my sets of deadlifts. And I had to walk over to the window and pull myself together. Honestly, what the heck?! I mean seriously. And by the way, nothing kills your motivation at the gym faster than being on the verge of crying in public.

Coffee Filter Garland

St. Patrick’s Day is coming up! I’m mostly excited for corn beef and cabbage, and I mostly made this garland because mint is one of my wedding colors, but it would be a perfect St. Patrick’s Day decoration!

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What you need:

  • Acrylic paint
  • Large bowl
  • Sponge brush
  • White coffee filters- I used 400 3″ filters
  • Twine
  • Pointed tip screwdriver
  • Tin foil
  • Baking sheet
  • Few pieces of scotch tape
  • Fabric glue (optional)

Instructables:

Step 1: You will be using several different mixes to get all the different colors. Fill the bowl with some water, a couple inches. Add some paint, and using the sponge brush, mix it in, being sure to sweep the bottom to make sure you get all the globs of paint. The more water, the lighter the color. The more paint the darker the color. Obvious enough.

Step 2: Lay some tin foil on the baking sheets and set the oven to 220 degrees. I stayed in the kitchen the whole time, precautions to not burn the house down.

Step 3: Grab about 25 filters at a time in a bunch and dip them in the bowl of paint and water. Make sure they all get drenched. Squeeze out just a little bit of the water from the filters when you pick them up. In about sets of 10 (guesstimate), lay them on the tin foil and bake for about 20 minutes. Check every so often.

Step 4: Repeat this process.

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Step 5: Once they are all dry, take a small stack and push the screwdriver through the middle. Before you pull the screwdriver back out, tape the end of the twine to the top of the screwdriver right below the handle (you will be taping it to the thin metal stick so you can get the twine through the filters). As alluded to, you will re-push the screwdriver through the filters so that the taped twine ends up all the way through too. Then untape the twine and pull it through. You can now fully remove the screwdriver from the middles of the filters.

Step 6: Repeat this step. Once all the filters are on the twine, tie a large knot at each end of the garland, and tie a loop shortly after that knot (moving outward). The first knot will keep the filters from going anywhere and the second knot/loop is what you can use to hang the garland (both knots pictured below).

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Step 7: Cover both knots with the fabric glue to ensure they don’t come undone. When you hang the garland, fluff out the pieces by gently sliding them and swishing your fingers through them.

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Here is another coffee filter garland I made slightly different. This one also has book pages, and music sheets.

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LASTLY. I made this wreath below out of coffee filters as well. Check back in the future for a tutorial on this one!

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Etched Dish Soap Bottle

Hope you all had a fantastic Valentine’s Day, and to those of you who hate it: Happy-Valentines-Day-Is-Over-Day!Β At least for those of you who hate it, you had the Olympics to preoccupy your attention this year! I’ve sort of been keeping up, but the skiing and snowboarding events are normally what capture most of my attention. Did you know that we have an Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs?Β It’s mostly a training center for the summer Olympic events, but I got a chance to go down there recently.

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Β It was a cool experience, especially since everyone is caught up in all the buzz while they are going on in Sochi right now. On a totally random side note, has anyone noticed the awesome jacket that the USA snowboard team is wearing? I love them! Here is one in case you haven’t seen it: Β 

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The Olympic training center also has this amazing gym! I mostly took this picture below for Tom, but I think I actually am a little envious of this workout space too. However, with wedding planning, I have actually stuck to entertaining myself while waiting for things to open up and in between sets by drawing “center piece” layouts in my workout notebook. Is that totally pathetic? You can tell me. But you don’t actually have to, because I know the answer….

…Which is obviously, NO NOT PATHETIC AT ALL! πŸ™‚

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I was more or less just impressed at my photographic genius by snapping the following picture and thought I should share it with you too.

Go Team USA!! woohoo!

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Etched Dish Soap Bottle

I’ve been wanting to make this for awhile, and got really excited to finally do it and give it to Tom for his new apartment!

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What You Need:

  • Vinegar/oil bottle (you can use any bottle though and find a spout for it)
  • Etching gel
  • Foam brush
  • Contact paper (or you can buy stick on stencils)
  • Scissors

Instructables:

Step 1: Cut out the words you want to inscribe on the bottle. I chose to use contact paper since it’s cheaper than buying stencils. You can draw on the letters and then cut them out. Remember to take into account the way the paper will actually stick to the bottle, otherwise you might end up cutting the letters out backward.

Step 2: When you cut out each letter, you will essentially be sticking on a square of contact paper, with the letter missing. You will have to cut out a little half moon to stick in the middle for the “D,” “O,” “A,” and “P.” You want the contact paper squares to overlap slightly so that the gap between the letters isn’t too large; and you definitely do want to make sure that there is contact paper in between each letter, otherwise it will all just blend together once you add the gel.

Step 3: Note: do not get the gel on your hands, see bottle for handling instructions. Using the foam brush, generously dab the gel on the open spots of the letters in between the pieces of the contact paper. Be sure not to get any on the bottle outside of where the letters are, otherwise it will leave etched marks that you won’t be able to remove. Let gel sit on for 1 hour. You can do it for less, but I like to do a whole hour to ensure solid, thick etching.

Step 4: After the hour has passed, put the bottle under the running faucet and gently rub the gel off and peel the contact paper off. Make sure you get all the gel off and wash your hands when you’re done.

Step 5: Depending on the spout that you have with your bottle, you may want to dilute the soap. I had never done that in the past, but I actually love it diluted. It comes out faster than squeezing the regular bottle, and you don’t have to use as much each time, since the soap is so concentrated anyway. I did equal parts soap and water.

Get cleaning! (just kidding)

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Mason Jar Lid Wreath

Hi everyone!

So I’ve been spending a lot of time researching vendors for this wedding shindig. We have spent a lot of time going over the photography piece of it recently, and I remembered this video I had stumbled on a while ago that I thought was so cool. It really didn’t help at all with figuring out what photographer we’re going to use, but it gave me a nice distraction and gave me another reason why I love photos and photography so much. I wanted to share it with you, it’s only 2 & 1/2 min..I KNOW you have that much time to spare, especially if you landed here from Pinterest or Facebook…! Click HERE to watch!

How cool is it to “meet” strangers this way? I just think it’s so interesting that everyone you pass has this entire story and life that you know nothing about. Every single person has all these complexities, and talents, and heartbreaks, and relationships, and friends, and struggles, and embarrassing moments (maybe not as many as me), and accomplishments, and things that make them laugh. I think it is always so fascinating to meet new people, because you never know what path they’re on or what path they have come from. Even though we live in a society that is continually veering away from interaction with other human beings, I hope something changes that, and I hope we go back to noticing people around us. And I don’t just hope those things because my flip phone makes it impossible for me to electronically connect with everyone.

Mason Jar Lid Wreath

The wreath that we’re doing today is originally from Tater Tots & Jello and I fell in love with it the minute I saw it. She used it for Halloween decoration, but I think it looks good for all year round! It’s size fits perfect in a kitchen.

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What you need:

  • 36 wide mouth mason jar canning lids (you can buy just lids at the store, unless you want 36 jars too)
  • Washi tape, 4 patterns
  • White spray paint
  • Coral and gray paint (use spray paint in these colors instead if you want to purchase it)
  • Ribbon

Instructions:

Step 1: Lay 23 of the lids out and spray paint them white.

Step 2: Paint 8 lids coral and paint 5 lids gray.

Step 3: Let them all dry. Next you will be adding the washi tape to the outside of the lids you painted white. I put one kind of washi tape on 5 lids, and each other kind of washi tape on 6 lids each.

Step 4: String them onto some ribbon and tie some bows!

*Some of the spray paint and regular paint might chip a little bit when they rub as you string them, but I think this is a more rustic looking craft anyway, so I don’t think it takes away from it at all. If you don’t want them to chip, you could try spraying an acrylic coat on top of the paint before you add the tape.

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Snow Globes

Hello all!

Two more days til Christmas!! But whose counting…

I saw a story a little while ago and thought it was so perfect for this time of year. It is such a cool reminder to me to bless other people during this season. The article was about a woman whose wallet got stolen while she was grocery shopping. She saw the man she thought had taken it and went up to him:

‘”As I saw him, a scripture came to me from Luke, which basically says ‘If someone should take your cloak, you should give them your shirt as well,” she told The Huffington Post.

The passage inspired her next actions, as she approached the man and calmly said, “I think you have something of mine. I’m gonna give you a choice. You can either give me my wallet and I’ll forgive you right now, and I’ll even take you to the front and pay for your groceries,” or she would call the police, according to Yahoo! Shine.

“He reached in his pocket and gave it back to me,” she told HuffPost, adding that “he started crying as we walked to the front. He kept apologizing and saying that he was embarrassed.”

Eaves, a mother of four and leader of the Christian outreach team at the First Christian Church in Guthrie, responded that she makes mistakes every day and has just as much to be embarrassed about, as she believes that in the eyes of Jesus, no one sin is greater than another.

…”I never carry cash. When I got to the check-out counter that day his (robber’s) total was just a little over $27 and I had $28 in cash in my wallet. And so I knew in that moment it wasn’t me. It was Christ that played in that moment,” she told Christian Post.’

-Article from Huffington Post

It’s so cool to see how far kindness and overlooking offenses can go. I don’t know about you but I sure wish I would respond this way in all situations. Last time Tom stole a bite off my plate, I assure you my response was not to give him another πŸ˜‰

Snow Globes

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It’s not too late to make some fun holiday decorations before your whole family comes over! Fortunately, these are super easy and the possibilities are limitless.

What you need:

  • Mason jars
  • Hot glue
  • Figurines and/or small toy trees (nothing metal or rustable, or peelable)
  • Fake snow (do not use regular glitter)
  • Distilled water (found in grocery stores)
  • Small bottle of glycerin (found at craft stores)
  • Decorative items: such as gift tags, keys, beads, bells, washi tape, ribbon, wire, safety pins, paper clips, paint etc.

Instructables:

The nice thing about these is that there is no wrong way to decorate them. There are a few steps you have to follow below for the functionality of the snow globes, but other than that, let your imagination soar (dumb phrase).

Step 1: Stick your figures/items in the jar to make sure they fit.

Step 2: Hot glue you figures to the bottom of the jar, or to the underside of the jar lid. If you are gluing to the underside of the lid, use a pair of scissors to scrap the “rubbery” surface off the lid in the place you will glue. That way the glue will have a solid grip.

Step 3: Add distilled water to the jar, leaving about an inch from the top. If you are gluing to the lid, make sure you leave room for the water to be displaced from the items once you attach the lid.

Step 4: Drop a few drops of the glycerin into the jar. I used about 4-5 drops for the small mason jars, and doubled that for the large mason jars. This makes it so that your snow will lightly fall, instead of all just sinking right away.

Step 5: Fill the rest of the jar with snow. Pour a little water over the top of the snow to make sure your jar is all the way full. Put on the lid really tightly. And shake up!

Step 6: Decorate!! I’ve added a bunch of pictures and brief descriptions below of the snow globes I made. Feel free to use any of those ideas or go in your own direction!

My Snow Globe #1: Little mailman and small tree glued to the bottom of the jar. I strung different sized silver bells around the lid and hot glued the ends on. I tied a chalkboard gift tag to the lid and wrote “To: You From: Santa”- using a white poster pen I drew a snowflake on the top of the lid.

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My Snow Globe 2: I glued 3 different colored and sized trees to the bottom of this large mason jar. I cut out a circle chunk of sparkly silver ribbon and lightly hot glued it on to the top of the jar lid. I then tied a large bow around the rim of the lid with sparkly green and white striped ribbon. Are you sensing a theme? A glitter or sparkly theme? Glitter is my favorite color………!

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My Snow Globe #3: This one was the most complex, but the fun thing about this one is that it’s not specific to any holiday, you could make some like these to just leave out all year.

For this one I strung on wire a bunch of random objects, including a key, button, bead, pearl, bell, flower gem and a paper clip. I scraped off the rubber surface on the underside of the lid and hot glued the ends of the wire to it.Β If you are using some of the items I used (paper clip, wire, bell, safety pin), be sure to cover the items with a sealant so that they don’t rust or peel in the water. I had that problem and had to switch out the water and snow. I’m going to go ahead and just recommend using twine instead of wire either way. I wrapped a few pieces of washi tape around the outside of the jar, and added strips of it to the lid as well. I wrapped a piece of twine around the rim of the lid and glued a few silver bells on. I also glued on a piece of wire around the lid and tied it in a little bow behind the bells.

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Reindeer Frame

Hi everyone!

Whew, can you believe all the sad things that have been happening recently?? I still am so shocked about the shooting at Arapahoe High School. I hope everyone is still praying for Claire Davis and her family!

This seemed like an opportune time to say thank you to all the officers and law enforcement teams that our nation is blessed with! Have you ever thought about how lucky we are that when we are in an emergency, that we can pick up the phone and call for help, and a total stranger will show up to help us, no matter what the circumstances or how dangerous?? They would actually risk their lives for yours, and they don’t even know you. It gives me goosebumps thinking about what a blessing that is. I will spare you the soap box speech I gave to my friend the other day at 6 am (I’m sure he was thrilled) but it always surprises me that people “don’t like cops,” especially for things like giving out speeding tickets. How rude for the law enforcers to give you a ticket for breaking the law. Don’t get me wrong, I hate getting tickets like anybody else, but if I’m speeding then I hardly think it’s rational to blame a cop for my speeding ticket. That’s obviously just a simple example, but I’m so thankful that we have laws and that we have people to enforce them. I am very thrilled to know that while I might like speeding sometimes, I don’t have to worry about everyone flying down the highway at 150mph, or someone breaking into my house with no option for help. How lucky that when there is, say, a school shooting, that there are 1000’s of men and women who respond immediately and rush into the school to protect the kiddos.

Some of us go to work and do paperwork from behind a desk, and that’s fantastic because every job is important for different reasons. But some people go into work and risk their life, and they don’t even come close to receiving the appreciation, respect and gratitude that they deserve. Next time you have the opportunity, I definitely encourage you to say thank you to them. We are so very fortunate to have them!

From the bottom of my heart, thank you so much to all the men and women in law enforcement out there, you’re a blessing!!

Reindeer Frame

My mom loves reindeer so I was trying to think of a way to get her something for the house that was reindeer-esque but something she hadn’t seen before. And this idea popped into my head. Don’t worry, I already gave it to her so this isn’t spoiling anything. πŸ™‚ After all, she has to be able to put it up for Christmas!!

What you need:

  • Frame
  • 2 Branches
  • Floral wire
  • Bow
  • Dangling doorknob bells (or bells that you attach ribbon to)
  • Glue gun
  • Duct tape
  • Photo(s)

Instructables:

Step 1: Insert the pictures that you are going to use. I chose to use reindeer pictures, but you could use winter pictures or Christmas pictures. You will still be able to swap them in and out, but it’s easiest if you put the ones you want right now in. By the way, you don’t have to get a 4 slot photo frame, any one will work. I got that one at Walmart for less than $10.

Step 2: Glue the center of the bow on the center of the frame at the bottom.

Step 3: Using floral wire hang the dangling doorknob bells from two latches on the back. Make sure the latches are pointed upward so the wire has no chance of sliding off. I set mine so that half of the loop was behind the frame and half was showing, with all the bells dangling down. I got my doorknob bells at the Dollar Tree. Guess how much they were? πŸ˜‰

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Step 4: Using floral wire again, layer it up several times so it’s nice and thick, and create a little loop on the hook where you would hang the frame. Depending on the type of hook your frame comes with, or if you want to attach a different one, you can decide what to do; but the purpose of the floral wire loop is so your frame will stay hanging on the wall hook while it is a little further from the wall, since the branches will be glued on the back pushing it outward a little bit. Tip: keep the part you twist on the bottom on the loop so that when the top is hanging on the wall, it’s not as noticeable.

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Step 5: Line up the two branches, one on each side of the back. Add a huge glob of glue from the glue gun and hold branch in place til it dries. Try to find branches that don’t bench “backward” into the wall. Also, you can cut the bottom of the branches before you glue them so they line up with the bottom of the “frame beam,” but I just left mine long because I can still get the pictures in and out.

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Step 6: After they are dry, cut a thin piece of duct tape and tightly tape it horizontally across the branch on the “frame beam” for extra support. Be sure you don’t tape below the frame beam because you still want to be able to swap the pictures in and out if you choose.

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Merry Christmas!!

Storybook Page Pumpkin

Guess what Tom and I finished this week??? Our 2,000 piece puzzle!! Or should I say our 1,998 piece puzzle, as 2 of the pieces have found themselves “misplaced.” Which is to no ones surprised given that we worked on it on and off over the course of about 10 months. We’re now in the process of gluing it and framing it. Wish us luck, I’m doubting that a 2,000 (ish) piece puzzle will be easy to frame. Here it is below though, our next goal is to visit this place in Italy:

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Storybook Page Pumpkin

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What You Need:

  • Book pages – stay away from glossy pages
  • Fake pumpkin – I got mine for $4.97 at Walmart, they have some smaller ones for $1 at Target and the Dollar Tree
  • Watercolors and the accompanying paintbrush
  • Mod Podge
  • Paint brush
  • Newspaper
  • Pens or pencils
  • Glue gun (optional but recommended- see step 7)
  • Scissors

Instructables:

Step 1: Cut the book pages into strips that are a little over the width of each “ripple” of the pumpkin.

Step 2: Thoroughly cover one side of a strip and stick it on, starting as close to the stem as possible. Smooth it out with your fingers so it curves with the ripple. Try very hard not to get Mod Podge on the top on the strips.

Step 3: Be sure to add strips to the bottom of the pumpkin to ensure everything is covered.

Step 4: Let this dry. While the pumpkin is drying, cut lots of long strips that are about 1 cm wide. Lay these on newspaper and using the watercolors, paint them green. Use a lot of water when painting, you want the page to soak the color up. I used some yellow with my green.

Step 5: Wrap all the long strips you just painted green around a pencil, pen, straw etc. while they are wet. Wrap til the whole strip is wrapped around in a tight coil, and slide it off. Be sure to set them to dry in a way that they won’t unravel. They shouldn’t unravel easily anyway because they will be very wet.

Step 6: Paint the pumpkin with the orange watercolors. Don’t use too much water on this part, but use enough that you aren’t just creating streaks.

Step 7: Once the green strips are dry, place a dab of glue on the end and glue them near the stem. I recommend using a glue gun, as you want them to dry fast. Once you glue on as many as you think look good, uncoil them a little bit to add variations in the strips.

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Can you tell my pages are from Pinocchio??Β  πŸ™‚ I found some good storybooks at Target in the cheap section at the entrance of the store. My pumpkin wasn’t actually quite as yellow as displayed below, the actual orange color was that of the picture above. My flash just lightened things.

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By the way, this is my new precious little nephew, Enzo, who is just the sweetest baby! This is the little goblin in his very first costume! Happy Halloween!

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Witch Hats

Hi!

So is it just me or is everyone else losing their memory too? You can be honest, I won’t remember anyway. I was reminded of this story today because it has to do with a trip I went on at the end of last year, that I’ll be going on again this December, and we’re getting close!

The trip was a work trip and lasted about 8 days. I normally get a check in the mail about a month or two after we get back, so that would mean I should’ve gotten it around February of this year. But around August of this year I happened upon the notion that I still hadn’t gotten paid. So I email my friend in the office and ask about it, and with definite alarm they say they’ll look into it! I get an email back the following day saying that their accounting department forgot to add a zero to the amount they paid me in February, so I was still owed several hundred dollars. They say they will cut the rest of the check this week and send it, and how terribly sorry they are for making me wait so long. That’s funny, I didn’t remember getting any of it, even the wrong amount. I guess I’ll look back through my bank statements just to make sure they even sent the part they mentioned, since they forgot the rest of it. As I near February in my bank statements, I notice a deposit for the full original amount I was supposed to get paid, with the right amount of zeros.Β  I get a call shortly later from my friend at the office saying the accounting department made a typo in the email to her, and it was the full amount I had gotten paid back in February. Around this time I am clicking on images of my deposits online to see that not only had I gotten paid the full amount in February, but I wrote out the deposit slip myself, drove it to the bank and dropped the check off. And I have ABSOLUTELY no recollection of this. If it wasn’t my hand writing I would have thought this was a joke. The only joke is how much my memory is failing me.

Witch Hats

These are cute as decorations on their own, or if you go the extra mile and decorate them after they’re cover in glitter. You can also put them on a pumpkin to spice it up!

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What You Need:

  • Small paper plate (any color)
  • Piece of black scrapbook paper (you can use any scrapbook paper if you don’t have black paper, and spray paint it black)
  • Black Glitter
  • Paint brush
  • Mod Podge
  • Black spray paint
  • Hot glue
  • Acrylic Coating Spray

Acrylic Spray

Instructables:

Step 1: Cut the scrapbook paper to 8.5″ x 11″. Roll the scrapbook paper into a cone. Hot glue the paper cone to keep it’s shape. The bottom will be really uneven, so cut off the paper sticking out on the bottom of the cone so that it become flat. You can also use a party hat instead of using paper if you have one or want to buy some.

Step 2: Spray paint the bottom of the paper plates. If you did not use black scrapbook paper for the cones spray paint them black as well. Let everything dry thoroughly.

Step 3: Once everything is dry, hot glue around the bottom edges of the cone and attach it to the spray painted side of the paper plate in the center.

Step 4: Lay out some paper that you can catch the glitter on, so you can funnel it back into the bottle.

Step 5: Paint Mod Podge in sections starting from the point of the hat. Pour glitter generously over each section of Mod Podge and repeat until the whole hat is covered. Be sure to “flick” your hat after each pour of glitter to shake the glitter loose.

Step 6: Go OUTSIDE and lay newspaper down OUTSIDE and follow the directions on the Acrylic spray OUTSIDE to coat the hats. Let dry according to cans directions, and repeat a second coat OUTSIDE. Let the hats dry OUTSIDE overnight. If I didn’t make it clear, definitely spray this outside, the fumes are amazingly strong until it is completely dry. Trust me, I’m stubborn and I learned the hard way. I might’ve killed so many brain cells in the process and that’s why I have a terrible memory πŸ˜€

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