Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Tutorial tuesday - jellyfish!

Sorry for nothing yesterday - it was my baby's birthday.  They are so bittersweet for me.  I LOVE the birthday and the day and the event.  And of course I always reflect back on the day and the events of the birth itself.  But I can't help but realize each year it just gets faster and faster.  Every birthday is another year closer to no babies here anymore.  And that makes me one sad momma.

We were at Mall of America in Bloomington MN this weekend for the girl scouts 100 year anniversary birthday celebration.  (WOW!!) We went to the sea life aquarium.  And much to my surprise the jellyfish were a HUGE hit with the kiddos, as well as myself! They had a very large display of many different jellyfish. So I thought this tutorial about making your own jellyfish bottle was fitting! I don't know if I could accurately reproduce her project, but its definitely worth a try - now just to find some clear shopping bags!!!

Click the picture to get to her awesome tutorial!

Let me know if you make one and how it goes for you!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Freebie Friday - Magazines!

I love getting magazines and/or catalogs in the mail.  A lot of people just toss them, labeling it as the dreaded junk mail.  But I love to look at them.  Even the catalogs.  It might seem silly, but I've learned a lot about different techniques and ideas from just browsing through catalogs.  You never know when inspiration will strike. 

Fill out the order form for Met Kids.  I haven't gotten this one before.  But it looks fun! And its free, so thats even better!

If you are reading this blog, then I'm nearly positive you love Martha Stewart.  And if you don't love her, I bet you still wouldn't mind getting her magazine for one year for free! Unlike the one above, you do have to take a short breakfast survey.  It took me less than 5 minutes.  I was enrolled in some reward point program (for answering the questions) but I don't plan on using that so I did nothing further besides hit delete. Here's the link I used.

I love spring and fall for many reasons.  Especially because of the nursery catalogs.  I get a lot from Spring Hill nursery.  I have bought quite a few plants from them (they have good specials) In addition to their main catalogs, they also do a ton of mailers.  I know this too would be junk mail to most, but the pictures they use are so beautiful I just know I will think of something awesome to make with them some day.  So down to the craft room upcycle shelf they go.  And in the mean time the kiddos make some pretty beautiful collages! :)

My nephew (and now my daughters - thanks to the new "girl" line) are getting really "in-to" legos.  I had no idea there was a magazine, but why not! It makes sense.  Because Lord help me, I can never think of anything to create when challenged.  And if I'm lucky enough to get an idea, I can never figure out which piece I am missing to complete my vision.  I had to fill out a form and then confirm from an email.  There are different age magazines, which I though was nice - hopefully the JR addition is filled with Duplo ideas!
Sign up for FREE LEGO Club magazines!

I scrolled down until I saw the image above.  If you click the magazines tab it'll take you to the digital eddition that shows up on your computer using your flash player.  So I hope by doing it the other way it'll actually send one in the mail and not just enroll the kids in the club. (just click the picture for the link)

**Update** We are receiving the Lego Magazine in the mail! :)
I love free magazines, but I am willing to pay for a good mag I really like too.  If you are the same way, I urge you to check out http://www.valuemags.com/home/index.asp They have several different titles with reduced subscriptions.  If you click on their free tab, you will see a list of freebies.  In my searching for today's post I have come across links from them for free Disney Family Fun and Better Homes and Gardens.  They are since expired, but at least its nice to know they put popular ones on the free list also!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Tutorial Tuesday - St. Pats Day

Since it's really late, and my husband is shutting lights off on me... I will keep this really short!
I stumbled upon this cute tutorial for a St. Patty's Day shirt.  Her tutorial is great, but I think I have another way.

Here's her completed project:

ADORABLE! And her blog post shows how to do it using the freezer paper stencil and cricut technique that has been all over pinterest and the like.  If you have a cricut and are confident in your skills to do this, excellent! If not, you could easily reproduce this shirt without.

My idea is use felt or scrap fabric to cut out your clover and then use a disappearing fabric pen (in the sewing section for a few few bucks - then the ink will "erase" during the first wash) to hand write your own letters and then fill them in with paint.  This idea is much quicker and while you may not think your handwriting is cute now, your kids will love it when they don't have you anymore.  My grandma's handwritten notes, cards and recipes are some of my most treasured belongings. Happy Creating!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Free Friday - St Patrick's Day & Free CRAFT Samples!!!

Finally Found a Free Friday Craft Sample! You have to have facebook, (but who doesn't!) and like them, and then you get a free tape measure.  I easily lose these bad boys for some reason!

I'm not Irish, so I sometimes forget about St. Patrick's Day.  And I've had a hard time coming up with crafts for the kids or myself that I enjoy for the holiday.  So, today, I'm going to try to change that!  Here is a cute website, with several St. Pat's crafts.  Some kid related, some not.  But all cute none the less.
My favorite (because bright colors are always fun) are these rainbow bean bags!

If you follow me on Pintrest, I also pinned this image this morning!

Before our house fire, I did monthly kid craft classes.  And for St. Patrick's Day we made this adorable "pot of gold".  I had stopped at the dollar store and picked up some butterscotch candies for the gold.  And just asked some new moms I knew for enough jars.  Otherwise it was super easy - I had 3 year olds doing it (with some help obviously)

pot of gold
Note on these: Glue dots did not work for us! We had to use the glue gun.  And the Curly Ribbon is a cute touch, but didn't seem to be "kid friendly" for the end project - they were very excited about it.  I would recommend simple fabric ribbon instead.  The online instructions if you need them are here: http://www.familycorner.com/family/kids/crafts/pot_of_gold.shtml
The picture editing is not working for some reason...

I'm not a huge artist.  I am much more comfortable crafting things.  But I do like to play around with new things.  And this paper sample pack should be a lot of fun.  This was super easy! Fill in the bare bones basic info, click submit and with in 24 hours my request will be processed!  Sure beats the usual 4 - 6 weeks jazz!

If you craft with your kids, you should be using glue dots.  They are simply freaking marvelous!! I don't use anything but if I can help it.  This request is a little different.  Send them a self addressed stamp envelope and the reason you are requesting the product and they'll send it off.  Really easy! And old fashion! :)

Not sure about this one, but figured I'd let you be the judge.  The claim is 50 sheets of orgami paper.  But once I filled out the request, it said, you may be selected for a free sample.  So I don't know.  But still worth 5 seconds of my time I guess.  Good Luck!
Origami Paper for FREE from EPC!

Happy Freebie Friday!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Egg Carton Creations 2

In January I did a post on what to do with Egg Cartons.  I couldn't help but to add a part 2.  Since then I've found so many more fun things to do with them!

This really fun article from one of my favorite kid idea sites, Family Fun, has some really great ideas. 
3 Thing to Do With Egg Cartons

Although only 3 of them are listed, I think number 2 is pretty cute!  And of course it could be adapted to any holiday or event, not just Easter.

After I did my post, I got inspired to use them for something I'd made.  It took a lot of tweaking, but I finally was able to crank out enough flowers to finish my first yarn wreath. 
Spring Yarn Wreath with Egg Carton Flowers
Once I finally figured out how to do them (I couldn't just cut and paint - they were way to big) it didn't take long at all and I'm already brainstorming ideas to use the "flowers" for something else.  You can purchase this specific wreath on my etsy. :)

Another adorable idea (followed by another "why-didn't-I-think-of-that" moments) from this blogger.  She used the lids to make buttons out of.  Which I think would be fabulous on some scrapbook pages.  She showed you exactly how she did it on her post.  Very nice job!!

I also really liked this idea, which again, can't believe I didn't think of doing!  Used Egg Cartons as little gift packages.  Depending on the gift, the dividers inside may be in the way.  You could possibly cut them out? Not sure on that one, I'll have to try it myself! At any rate, this one looks really great! (PS - this image came from flickr, and there wasn't a blog or anything attached to it, so no instructions or credit to give here sadly!)

Pinned Image

Another idea I've seen is to use them as centerpieces.  I found one on Etsy.

Springtime Fiesta: Vibrant Orange, Pink and Purple Gerber Daisy Candle Recycled Egg Carton Centerpiece

I think you would probably not burn the candles however though.  I know from our house fire, silk flowers aren't even kindling! They melt down to nothing, faster than you even know they're burning. So this one is just to look at in my opinion.  Nevertheless, I love the dyed carton as the base.

I remember from my daycare days there was a toy from Fisher Price (in the 80s I think??) that used an egg carton and eggs as sorting. I don't remember exactly what you had to do anymore.  But you could do something similar with your own.  Paint the insides of the cups and then use plastic Easter eggs in the same colors to help your child learn colors and matching.  Of course, you could get even craftier and sew felted ones.

My last idea for today would be to use beans and an egg carton as your own mancala game.  I played mancala a lot as a kid.  You would need a dice too (if I remember right) and two different colored playing tokens. (like two different kinds of bean or marbles) If you have no idea what mancala is, you can look it up online. 

Enjoy even more egg carton uses! :)