Wednesday, December 8, 2010

"How to Train Your Dragon" Party

My little boy turned 7 this past weekend.  He was so excited we started planning over a month in advance.  He just HAD to have a "How To Train Your Dragon Party".  So this is what we did.

First we had to make the invitations....  We found this silhouette (very similar to "Toothless" from the movie) and I turned it into a SVG file for my Sure Cuts Alot.
Then he put together the design & wording for his invitation using a "dragon" font we downloaded off the internet.

First, we ran to the dollar store and picked up all the children's size medium red t-shirts they had in stock (sorry, if anyone was looking for them) I used a freezer paper technique to paint  "Toothless" on each shirt so each boy would have their own.

After watching the movie and more pizza & snacks than I thought was possible for little boys to digest, we started playing the games....

1: We need to shoot a dragon out of the sky!... Normally my first instinct would be a pinata.  But apparently, at his school, they are so passe (he he he)  So here's what we did.  I printed out this picture of "Toothless" in flight.  I used the program PosteRAZOR to blow up my little tiny jpg  image into a larger print. 
 Then we purchased some "sticky bug sling shot thingy's" from Wal-mart's birthday section (I'm pretty sure that is the technical term for them).  I laminated the picture and hung it as high up on our family room wall as it could go. The boys all took turns (well, at least in the beginning) throwing their "bugs" at "Toothless".  It was pretty hilarious watching them figure out how to use a "sling shot bug" and then all trying, at once, to hit the same spot on toothless.

2: WE HAVE TO FEED THE DRAGONS: Ok, this one was pretty easy.  I printed out some pictures of the dragons from the movie.  Applied them to foam board and cut out "feeding spots"

Then, as we all know, dragons eat fish right???? (Alright, that is what I was informed)  So I ran into the craft room and used some scrap shark material to make the boys bean bags. (Which they all got to take home with them)

3: Pin the Tooth on Toothless:  Need we say anymore.  I just tweaked the "donkey-tail" game.  Printed out this adorable picture of Toothless and cut out some white triangles.  It was adorable!

And we can't forget the CAKE!  My son doesn't like chocolate cake or icing, and after many failed attempts we determined that Mommy just can't color white icing black (like Toothless)  So he settled on green, as long as there were flames coming out of his mouth! (I admit it, the flames are a Christmas Decoration from Wal-mart)  Inside we colored the cake Red & Blue (because dragons are different than other animals, they have red & blue stuff in them)
 At the end of the party each boy was given their own bag (yup decorated with Toothless) to take home!  Complete with too much candy, their sticky bug thingy & a shark bean bag!

Everyone had a blast, and somehow my family room survived the boys for an afternoon!  What a great birthday party!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A Rose Bud Christmas Tree

I've got a house full of girls (5 of them, not including me) and much to the chagrin of the boys (only 3, if you count my hubby) the girls are GIRLY GIRLS!  I'm sure many of you know exactly what that means.  Ruffles, lace, flowers, pink, purple, PINK, and girl stuff all over.  While I was relaxing last night my adorable 5 year old asked me a question?????

"Mommy, why aren't Christmas Tree's PINK?"  She was so serious it was cute.  I gave her the generic answer of , "because their green sweetheart, that's the way god made them"  Apparently that was not the appropriate answer.  So today she asked if we could make her a "GIRL" tree.  And then it hit me.


I figured out how to make really cute roses with my cricut & SURE CUTS ALOT software.  Why not make a whole bunch of them and make her a little tree sign.   Here is how I did it!

I tweeked a jpg that I found on google of a scalloped spiral so that it would cut on my cricut.  (using inkscape and Sure Cuts Alot 2)

Then using some mauve (ok, fine, i'll call it pink) ink that I picked up at Roberts for $1 I just brushed it over the edges of the scallops.

Then I used my embossing stylus (but anything long and skinny like a skewer would work) and I started at the end and started rolling up the spiral.

 When you get it all finished it looks like a really tight rose bud.  You can glue it like that or I let go to loosen it up a bit. 

Then just put some glue on the bottom to hold it all together.

After you get all your roses complete call in your favorite 5 year old helper to give you a hand.

Have her pose for a picture!  Not that she wasn't already doing that.... Then decide what type of background you want.  I originally wanted to go with a Black or darker background.  But little girls can be pretty insistent.  It had to be WOOD, after all it is a TREE!

So I pulled out some scrap flooring that I had laying around and i had her draw a light sketch of what she wanted her tree to look like.

Not too shabby if you ask me (especially for a 5 year old)

Then just start gluing away.  (Don't worry, I was supervising the use of the hot glue gun with my little girl, no one got hurt in the production of this tutorial)

Stop for yet another posed picture.....

Add a ribbon bow at the bottom for the "tree stump" and VOILA!  A Girly "pinkish" Tree..

It turned out better than I thought it would.  She hasn't decided if she wants to add something else to it (It is her choice, because it's her "pink" Christmas Tree)  But I like it just the way it is.  I can't wait till Valentines day.  I'm gonna make a heart out of Red velveteen paper!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Teacher's Gifts

I struggle every year with finding gifts.  Gifts for my family, for my friends, my neighbors, the mailman...... you get the picture.  I love to give gifts, cookies, etc.  The one I struggle with the most is the gift for my kids teachers.  I have a lot of friends who are teachers and I know they LOVE everything their students give them.  I know that they are all heartfelt and loving, homemade and store bought.  Everything is appreciated.  But I have this desire beyond belief to always give them something that they have NEVER received before.  It is getting increasingly harder and harder to find something unique each year.

Last year my kids were REALLY into mod podge.  So we made some cute name plaques for each of their teachers and principles.  I thought they turned out great!  This year we've decided on something a little more out of the box....


My kids each have their own rice bag.  They are the best comfort (second to moi) that my kids could have.  They heat them up in the microwave when they come in from playing in the snow.  We've got them in the freezer for the little bonks and bruises.  They stick them under their sheets before they hop into bed at night so their toes don't get cold (how cute is that)

But I figured I couldn't exactly just hand them any old bag.  So my kids picked out the material and we pieced together the fronts.  We then decided to write a poem to go along with them (since, apparently just writing a description or instructions is SO five minutes ago!)

This is what we ended up with....

 The lizard one is for the one male teacher my kids have.  My daughter INSISTED that he is obsessed with Lizards.  So we had to go with that print.  The others are made with a print from Mary Engelbreit.  It just looked so happy and cheerful, I had to use that one!
Here they are all together!  Now to get working on my sister gifts.... I'll show you those tomorrow!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Grapevine Pumpkin Tutorial

I don't have alot of Fall or Thanksgiving Decor.  But that is something I am definately trying to change.  I absolutely adore the cute grapevine pumpkins that seem to be at every craft show I go to.  But I can't aford the price tag.  So I figured it out for myself.

First, I took some grapevine that I had laying around the house (It used to be ontop of the cupboards, but hey... I never throw anything away)  Along with some old wire that was in the drawer (oops.  forgot to take a picture of that!)

You want to start by making a loop.  The size depends on how big you want your pumpkin, and how much grapvine you have.  But the sky's the limit its up to you!

Now take some of your wire and twist it around TIGHTLY (trust me on this one, it will come undone if it's not tight) Then continue wrap the grapevine and twist your wire.

Once you've got it as full as you want your pumpkin just twist a couple extra times around the middle with your wire.  Then separate & "fluf" up your pumpkin.  My grapevine had these little twigs twisted around the vine to keep it together.  I just snipped them off and separated all the vines.

I sent the kids outside to find some leaves for an added little touch.  And put a piece of green scrap material around the center for a little color.  I like it... What do you think?

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Saturday, November 13, 2010

A Manly Office Space

So, I am married to the most wonderful, perfect (at least to me), adoring & sensitive man alive. I am so incredibly blessed that he chose me to be his wife. He works so hard so that I can stay home with our delightful children.

I have to admit it, but our house is on the “crowded” side. So my husband (I’ll call him Mr. Sensitive”) only has a small “corner” in which he calls his office. Ok, it is a little bit more than a corner, but less than a room…. I’d say it is a wide hallway perhaps. A little over a year ago we tried to sell our home to move into a bigger one. So we packed up half the house to “stage” it to sell.

(oh how cute all nice and staged....)

Obviously that didn’t happen. Any way’s , my sweet hubby has spent the last year TRYING to unpack what we had put into boxes. He has been trying so hard but with his work schedule it wasn’t going very fast, but I wanted a way to show him that I noticed he was trying and I was grateful for it.

He really isn’t into a lot of frills, and around this house “frills” out votes "simple". (With 6 girls and only 3 boys, how else could it be) I wanted his office to portray what he loves most. So I went through all his “mission” memorabilia from Ponape, Guam. He had so much stuff that is all beautiful. Among it I found a great ‘mobile’ hand carved like dolphins & fish.

He has an actual sea turtle shell. But my favorite has to be the  2 hand carved shark with real shark teeth on them. (I knew that would make a manly space)

Then to round it out I figured that since he is such a perfect husband & father I would make him a “picture wall”  He  is after all "Mr Sensitive" and he honestly never throws away a picture or any type of drawing/note/scratch paper that the kids give him.

While he was at work one day I went downstairs and “stole” the most memorable of his pictures. I pulled out my trusty black spray paint and went to town on all the un-matching picture frames. Oh they looked beautiful. Then I used my nifty “Cricut” to cut out the perfect saying.

“Never let a problem to be solved become more important than a person to be loved.” By Thomas Monson. It is perfect for my husband who sometimes gets so involved solving all the problems that he forgets to stop and “smell the roses” (or diapers in our situation)

I centered the quote on the wall and then surrounded it with his pictures of our family, his parents and everyone else.
 I also added some more memorabilia  from Ponape.  Some really intricate hand carved wooden boats.

"Mr. Sensitive" was so excited when he got home. And I love that the walls are no longer bare. What a WIN WIN situation.

It is still a work in progress.  I know now that it has a little "style" he'll work hard to get the rest of the boxes put away (hint hint hint)

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Cottage Instincts

*** Ok, so I should probably admit that I'm NOT the best speller (thanks Monica :)) Without even noticing I've misspelled PROBLEM (ok, so it only has one M) I ran downstairs to show my 17 year old daughter. Who, after laughing hysterically admitted that she didn't notice it was spelled wrong either. She wants to wait to see how long it takes "daddy" to notice that it is spelled wrong. Eventually, I promise, it will be fixed.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

An apology and a new clock!

I am SO sorry that I haven't posted for a while.  Like I said before October is the MOST hectic month of the year for me.  Luckily 3 of my girls are now another year older, and Halloween is finally past.
Here's 6 of the 7 kids (sorry, the "teenager" is just too cool to hang out with us anymore)  I've got Harry Potter, Hermine Granger, a Beauty queen, A Mummy, Cinderella & a little dinosaur.  AWWWW ..... How cute!

Any way's, now that October is gone, I can finally get back to what I love most.  CRAFTING!!!! I've been keeping myself busy.  My hubby found an old Rooster clock (not exactly my style).  And I love turning Trash into Treasure

The original picture I took didn't turn out for some unknown reason (sorry) I found this one on Google images (it's the exact clock without the gaudy gold frame)

First things first.  I took it apart (one of my favorite parts) and spray painted the gold frame black.

I decided that I really didn't want a boring back ground for my clock, but my front room really doesn't warrant any excitement.  After long consideration I decided I wanted it to look OLD.  Kinda like stucco maybe?  So here is what I did.  I covered the clock fact with...... wait for it..... little strips of masking tape.  To give it that textured look.

Then I spray painted the face antique white.  (Definitely one of my new favorite spray paint colors)

Next, I cut out a beautiful damask out of black vinyl as well as some dots and numbers for my clock face.

Once all the vinyl was applied just the way I liked it.  I put the clock all back together.  And hung it in the front room.

I really love how it turned out!