Search This Blog

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Pinterest Inspiration

If you've read any of my past posts, you may remember me mention a few times how I love Pinterest! Well, I thought I should put all that fun research to use and actually make some of the things I've pinned.

Let's start with this one it's called unicorn poop. Ok, I didn't name it! I just call them unicorn cookies when I made them with my kids. Aren't they super cute, though? Here's the inspiration picture:

will have to try to make these some day

Here's how they looked at my house. Color not as bold, but still kind of pretty. 

Now for the glaze and stars!

They may not look as great as the inspiration picture, but they were actually really yummy! Would I make them again? Well, they took a long time to make with the twisting of the different colored dough strips, but I think I can bypass that part next time and just swirl the colors through the dough. Maybe? Anyway, I tried making them and they got eaten so I say mission accomplished!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Activities for kids who love books!

I love summer. I love not having to rush the kids off to school. I love having a week's vacation with my family. I love planning for summer activites. I also love reading to my kids  -- especially in the summer. Why? I guess it's because even though they could be playing with whatever, they still ask me to read them a book. A happy moment for this Mommy. We always sign up at our local library for their reading program. Even though they love to read, it somehow makes us a little more accountable.

I also like to think of other activities related to reading that we can do to make it even more engaging. That's where Alphabet Glue comes in. Alphabet Glue is an e-magazine with crafty ideas related to reading. All I have to do is look at an issue of Alphabet Glue and I have activities for lots of "what-can-we-do-now?" days.

Anne Riechmann is the author of the blog Bird and Little Bird. I stumbled upon this blog about a year ago and am so excited when unexpected gifts like that happen! I subscribed to it right away. She is also the creator of Alphabet Glue which you can find here. I just purchased volume seven and have been a fan since volume 1!

I can't wait to make the storytelling cootie catcher and the cardboard constellation scope. My kids are always asking about the constellations and this project will be so fun to tie into an evening we'll dedicate to learning about the stars!

Here's a picture from her site showcasing her colorful, reading-related activites:


Alphabet Glue volume 4 is where I got the idea for the bookworm pencil topper craft we did for reading night at our school. The bookworm is my design that I also used for my daughter's 5th birthday party last year that can be seen here. 


Sunday, June 24, 2012

Family vacation t-shirt designs

Every year, I design a t-shirt iron-on for our family vacation to Hilton Head. I actually started doing this last year. We pick one day out of the week to wear them and take a family photo on the beach. I'm going to start offering different designs on my Etsy shop. If you're interested in this one, you can check it out here at my shop! : )

Here's this year's design:

Last year's design:

The oval design can be found at my shop here.

Happy Vacationing!!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Smurf Birthday Party

Ever since my kids were born, I've loved designing birthday invitations and party accessories for them. I guess it's the graphic-designer-turned-mommy in me. I'm so glad to be a full time mommy now -- doing graphic design was the best kind of office job for me, but I'm much better at designing cute and fun things rather than financial brochures.

Anyway, I've gotten a little better at planning parties because of my experience with my own family events. I'm starting to plan my daughter's 6th birthday in August (hint: it's a girl's bug theme party) AND planning my parents' 50th wedding anniversary in August as well! I get so excited to plan the little details and thinking how it will all come together! I'll keep you posted on the parties later this summer.

With my Etsy shop, I'm planning to expand what I offer for parties and so when I know someone who wants accessories designed for their party, I am over the moon about the opportunity to help them!

Right now, I'd like to share with you designs I did for one of my friend's daughter's birthdays. Her theme was Smurfs and she turned 6. She told me what items she needed designed and I was more than happy to help out with it! Enjoy the pics!

She did a great job setting up everything! I made the pom poms for her and she put the flowers 
on the wall. 

She wanted tags to put on popsicle sticks to put in the buckets (turned out so cute). I designed the tags and chocolate candy bar wrappers. 

She asked me to make labels for her snacks and other foods. She made the sugar cookies that are in the basket. I have to tell you, they were the best sugar cookies! So soft and fluffy! I'm going to have to ask her to share the recipe with me!

Here are tags I made for the favor bags. Don't you just love the yellow and blue? It's so bright and cheery!!

I also designed water bottle labels:

And more labels for snacks. Don't these Smurfberries look delicious?  

Yummy pretzels dipped in chocolate with blue sugar!

She found Thin Mints in the party colors!

Grouchy Smurf was perfect for her idea of "I hate salsa" label. 

I loved working with her ideas! Hope you enjoyed the pictures!! 

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

End of Year Teacher Gift

The end of the school year seems like a blur!! It is so busy for me and I am constantly blocking out how quickly my kids are growing.

Here's a cute gift idea. I gave this to one of our teachers. 

I used the "thank for helping us grow & bloom" to kind of tie in her door that we designed for teacher appreciation week. You can see that here.

I blurred the faces because I don't have permission from their parents, but I still think you can get the idea. I think my daughter's teacher really liked it. Oh, how I miss Kindergarten already!! 


Art bucket gift with tag

Last year for my niece's 5th birthday, we gave her an adorable bucket -- that I found at Target after Easter -- and filled with art supplies. I designed the tag using an image from freeprettythingsforyou. I think it turned out really cute!

On one side of the bucket, I added a gift tag with a picture of my daughter with my niece (they're the same age) and then the other side of the bucket is the label. See how cute the vintage girl is on the tag!! She's holding a piece of paper and I added my niece's name to it. I attached it to the bucket with a ribbon, and used a clothes pin to attach the gift tag.

I also included instructions for using food coloring to dye flowers just for something extra.

Maybe this'll give you a good gift idea!

Teacher's Lounge Makeover

Now that summer is here, I was reflecting on some of the fun things I was able to do at the school this past school year as a room parent and PTO member. Remember that teacher's lounge makeover idea I brought up during teacher appreciation week? Well, if not, I briefly mentioned something about it in this post.

Making over the teacher's lounge was one of the top events of the school year in my book by far!!

After seeing this room (the teacher's, um, lounge):


and then the inspirational blog by Melanie Ralbusky at School Girl Style (awesome stuff here)! I realized something needed to be done. Something brighter and cheerier! I asked another room parent (the one I've talked about before who thinks crafty like me) and we got to work.

I came up with the main design, but like I said I was extremely inspired by the schoolgirlstyle blog:


 This cute little purple desk was hidden in the corner, so...we made it more functional by putting their computer on it.



See where the computer used to be -- on a student-sized desk with no room for the mouse or writing:


For pens, I decorated a mason jar with purple and gold (our school colors) letter stickers, a ribbon, and a pen with a yellow flower on it. I bought the purple frames at Hobby Lobby and designed the prints to put in them.


 These microwaves were stacked on top of each other and after asking around, I found that the huge bottom one didn't even work and that only one can be used at the one time anyway, 
so bye bye oh-ridiculously-large-one!


I think it looks much better now, don't you?


On the tables, I designed tags and placed small details:

I found the caddies at Target in the $1 spot! 

Snacks for the teachers:

My favorite addition; a cozy corner. I bought the director chairs at TJ Maxx and designed an iron-on for the backs. I found the yellow table at Homegoods (another favorite store of mine) and the hanging paper lanterns came from Hobby Lobby. 

I bought the purple pillows at Target. The purple rug was on clearance from Target, too!!! SCORE!! I bought a total of three of them and I think it really helped cozy up the space! 

Not sure if you can tell, but I made "window coverings" out of scrapbook paper. I cut them into banner shapes and attached to the top of the window frames. 

Here's a closer look:

The mailboxes were pretty much a huge mess! I used goof-off and scraped the old labels off! My friend designed the labels, then hot glued the ribbons onto them after attaching to the metal. 
The effort took the look from this:


To this: So cute and completely worth it!


We cleaned off the top and covered the bottom with a purple curtain we found at Hobby Lobby. We attached it with velcro. We also added the dry erase bus and cute little magnetic teacher to-do notes on the file cabinet.

So, again, changing an icky space from this...


to this...


Ahhh, much better. The file cabinet on the left used to be behind the mailboxes. We moved it here to give more storage area behind for folding chairs that were once in the middle of everything. The storage closet is back there, too, so moving it here seemed to make the most sense. 

To kind of tie it all together, I made these signs to go on the teachers' doors. My room parent friend and I walked around and hung them. 
My husband contributed by finding the small 3M hooks. Thank you Sweet Pea! 

I love how using our school colors really brightened up the space! The teachers seemed to really love it!!! I had the best time planning it and then putting it together! It took an entire day to complete. But, for just two of us, I think that's pretty good! 

Does your teacher's lounge need a makeover? If it does, then you now have an idea for teacher appreciation week for next year!! I know it's summer, but the room mom in me can't help but plan for next year!! Yes, I'm thinking about first day teacher gifts already! hee hee 

Enjoy summer!!