Monday, January 31, 2011

thumb print Love Bug Valentines

Claire and I made these adorable little Valentine cards last night. It really is such a simple project to make. Our first step was to use the cricut to cut out our tags. Now, if you don't have a cricut you could make simple rectangle tags- which really, would be a lot faster anyway! We cut two tags for each card, and made the red ones slightly larger than the white ones. Then Claire did her thing and stamped her thumbprint on each of the white cards. Then I quickly swept the cards away from her and put them on the counter to dry before she had the whole card painted red. (If you're doing this craft with a toddler, may I suggest that you cut a few extra cards. NOT that I would know this from personal experience or anything!)

I just added a little face, some googly eyes (because what kids craft isn't made better with some googly eyes?) and tied them with bakers twine and they were done. The red tags are perfect for writing your Valentine's day messages.

Happy Valentine's Day!

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Sunday, January 30, 2011

Kids Valentine craft

This was the perfect craft to make. We were able to do it while Simon had a quick morning  nap and it involved everything that Claire loves to do. She got to colour, use scissors, googly eyes, glue, and sticky tape. (On a side note, yes I do realize that as a general rule tape is sticky. Claire calls it sticky tape thanks to Dora.)

Another great thing about this craft is that you could really cater it to such a variety of ages. Claire's nearly 3, so I had to help her cut out the hearts, and put most of the tape on BUT older kids would be able to make these with much less guidance.

What you need to make these:
toilet paper rolls
construction paper
white computer paper
googly eyes (older kids could draw on the eyes)
decorative tape or strips of coloured paper (could use leftover wrapping paper)

1. cover toilet paper roll with sheet of white paper. (This might be a step that you could skip. It was hard for us to pick off all of the extra bits of toilet paper, so we just covered them up!)
2. cut hearts out of construction paper (can you tell that Claire cut out the purple 'heart' below?)
3. colour the hearts or draw on a face
4. add googly eyes, if you're using them
5. add decorative tape, of strips of paper to the toilet paper roll
6. tape the heart to the front of the toilet paper roll

Inspired by the finger puppet Valentines that Katie Did made last year.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Love t-shirt

I sat down to make another freezer stenciled t-shirt using this technique here. I had actually picked up this shirt to make a Christmas one for my daughter, but December went by a little too quickly for me to get everything done! I was going to use the same design layout that I had in mind for the Christmas shirt- but I guess that must have escaped my mind when I actually sat down to make it. I also forgot to check to see if I had the right colour paint. (Too much on the go I guess!) And, because I wanted the shirt done right away, I just used purple, it's kind of Valentines-y anyway.

As usual, I've got a million things on the go here. I'm busy planning Claire's little birthday party (all about rainbows), and finishing off some of the Valentine's Day crafts that we've been working on. Posting has been a little sporadic because Simon's teething, (2 teeth are in, and the third is almost through) and he's been skipping his naps- thus leaving little time to craft- let alone blog about it!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Valentine's day printables

I had so many Valentine printables running through my head this year, but somehow they didn't all turn out quite how I had envisioned. I'm definitely better more comfortable with paper designs rather than computer ones! Something to work on in my spare time, which at my current pace, could be a few years from now! BUT that's ok, because right here, right now, it's all about loving my kids and family, and that's just fine with me. Just a few hours apart from my duaghter today, and I couldn't stop hugging her when I got home.

That's what this printable is all about. Find love (kids, husband/wife, family) and hold them tight. Hug them lots- you'll never be sorry that you gave out too many hugs.

(To save file click on the picture to enlarge it. Then click on it again and right click and save the file.) Let me know if you use this file- I'd love to see what it looks like in your space.

Linking up with  It's Fun to Craft, Fingerprints on the FridgeIt's a Hodge Podge LifeA Few of my Favorite Things, I heart naptime & Support Blog for Moms of BOYS & C.R.A.F.T. & Making the World Cuter

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

delicious Valentine's Day cupcakes

 I have finally found the most delicious chocolate cake recipe AND it's so easy to make. When I was visiting with my Mom last week Claire and I used this recipe and made some very delicious Valentine's Day cupcakes. (Sure we probably ate them all a full month before Valentine's Day, but now that we have such a great recipe we can make more for February 14!) We also made the icing that is supposed to go with this cake, but I found it way too chocolaty for my taste (and I love chocolate), so I made a similar one with much less cocoa powder.

Claire's birthday is just around the corner, and I really need to find a delicious recipe for a white/yellow cake. Does anyone have a favorite one that they'd like to share? I've tried so many, but haven't found a keeper yet.

Here's the recipe that we used, I've linked it to the Hershey's site in case you're interested in using the frosting that they suggest.


Bake Time: 50 minutes
  • 2 cups (500 mL) granulated sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups (425 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup (175 mL) HERSHEY'S® Cocoa
  • 1 1/2 tsp (7 mL) baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp (7 mL) baking soda
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup (250 mL) milk
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (250 mL) boiling water
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Grease and flour two, 9-inch (1.5 L) round baking pans.

2. Combine sugar with flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Beat with an electric mixer, set to medium speed, for 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Divide batter evenly between prepared pans.

3. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in centre comes out clean. Cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove cakes from pans to a rack; cool completely. 

Monday, January 17, 2011

love sign

 I love Valentines Day, and I've been having a great time thinking of Valentines day crafts. What's great about this craft is that it's so simple & cheap to make. This is an excellent nap time craft and it can be made using the supplies that you have on hand too (except for maybe the wooden plaque).

What you need:
wooden plaque (check your dollar store)
piece of patterned paper
piece of solid colour cardstock
white paint (it could be painted to match the patterned paper)
mod podge

Cricut cutter (or utility knife)
I placed a piece of white computer paper on top of my plaque and used a crayon to etch out the shape of the oval. I cut out the oval and then traced it on to the patterned paper, and then cut that oval out.

 I painted the edges of the plaque white. I used my cricut cutter to cut out the word love. You could of course cut out the letters with a utility knife if you don't have a cricut (or something similar). Then I painted a coat of Mod Podge on the plaque and carefully placed on my paper, squeezing out all of the air bubbles. I then coated the paper with a coat of Mod Podge and placed on the word love. I sealed it all with one last coat to finish it off. Once it was dry, I added a ribbon so that I could hang it up.

Linking up with It's Fun to Craft, Fingerprints on the Fridge,   I heart naptime & Support Blog for Moms of BOYS & C.R.A.F.T. & Making the World Cuter

Monday, January 10, 2011

tea party table

I bought a couple of lack side tables from IKEA many years ago now. They have been well used over the years, and it had come to the point where I had debated getting rid of the tables all together, BUT, I have problems getting rid of stuff (I'm going to work on de-cluttering this year!) Ever since I discovered the fabulousness of Mod Podge this year, I'm always try to find projects where I can use it. I decided that Claire needed a table so that she could host a tea party. I went through my papers, and picked out my favorite ones to use on this table. I measured the table and then cut all of my papers into squares to make a patchwork table.
Once I had all of the paper squares cut I played around with the papers, trying to find a design that worked for me. I wanted to make the table less pattern-y and more random- but turns out I can't do random. 

Now I thought (notice the past tense) that it would be easier to tape all of the squares together and then Mod Podge them onto my table. IT WASN'T. This was my first time using Mod Podge on such a large scale, and I basically know everything that I shouldn't do next time! I was so focused on having all of the squares line up perfectly (even though in the end they still didn't) that I thought it would have been easier to tape them together, that way I wouldn't be rushing to get them on before the Mod Podge dried. Oh boy, I was in a kerfuffle last night. I had coated my table in Mod Podge and I placed the squares that were all taped together on the table, but they weren't straight, I couldn't seem to get them just right. So, panicked, I took the whole giant sheet of squares off and then had my husband help me put it on again. I let it dry overnight, and put books on the table so that no air bubbles developed. The next morning I added a top coat of Mod Podge to the table. I think that it needs a few more before Claire & Simon really start to use it though.

 Claire didn't want teddy to attend the tea party, hence the empty chair. Here she was pouring a cup of tea for Simon.
 I hope that she has many happy tea parties using this table.

Linking up with Somewhat Simple & Craft-O-Maniac, & DIY Show Off  &

Friday, January 7, 2011

snowmen Christmas ornaments

 I loved my snowmen tags that I made, but I knew that they wouldn't last hanging on the tree. As soon as Claire would have seen it she would have snapped it off of the tree and folded it in half. I really wanted to have something that I hold onto for a few years so, when the Christmas decorations went on sale this Boxing day I picked up a pack of silver ornaments so that Claire could make the thumbprint snowmen on the ornaments.

Here's what you need:
ornaments (any colour, blue would be nice)
white and black paint
black and orange markers

1. press on two white thumbprints on the ornament (we let these dry before we moved onto the next step, but if you're doing these with older kids (or a child that will let you help them), it might not be necessary
2. press on a black thumbprint on top of the two white ones (let dry)
3. add any other details with permanent markers (I drew a line for the top hat, and added buttons, eyes, nose, and smiles. On the back of the ornaments I wrote Claire's name and the year.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Claire's new play kitchen

 As soon as I saw kitchens made from old/recycled nightstands, I knew that I wanted to make one for Claire. I scoured kijiji looking for the perfect nightstand to use. I saw this one and thought that it would be perfect. Now, it was my intent to have my Dad help me make this, maybe bring some of his tools over to my house so that I could play an active roll in making the kitchen for Claire, but he ended up doing nearly all of the work.

I love how the kitchen turned out, but more importantly so does Claire.
 On the side of the nightstand is a magnetic board. The sink is a bowl from the dollar store, taps are old dresser knobs, and the faucet is an upside down letter J. I picked up the toaster last March on sale, and added two burners to the top of the stove. The knobs are recycled door handles/pulls. I added 4 for good measure.

My Dad cut a hole in the top drawer to added a piece of frosted glass for the oven. The oven closes with a simple magnetic closure.
 The burners are bamboo coasters that I picked up at the dollar store. To make them look more like burners I used my cricut cutter to cut circles and then I Mod Podged them on. This side of the nightstand is a chalkboard.
 I made Claire some eggs from felt to play with. I stuffed the yolk with a bit of batting, and added a bit of an old wipes package between the layers of the felt to make the egg crinkly.
 Claire loves to cook the eggs in the oven.
Linking up with: Someday Crafts

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

Wow, what a whirlwind the month of December was. Now here we are, a new year full of new adventures. For me, this is the year to get organized (among other things that I may or may not have had time to establish yet).

I'm busy going through my pictures that I took in 2010 (all 11851 of them) and getting ready to get a few hundred of my favorite ones printed. I got a new lens for Christmas, and I can't wait to get a photo shoot set up with Claire and Simon. I worry that I may have more than 11000 pictures this time next year.

I'll be back tomorrow to show you what we made Claire for Christmas. I also want to show off one more Christmas craft that we made this week! Until then, I will leave you with one of my new favorite pictures of these candy canes. Welcome 2011.

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