Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Lamb Party Kit

I just finished a sweet little lamb party kit for a 4-year-old's birthday party. It's soooo cute!

The little birthday girl had looked through my shop and decided that she and her twelve party guests should each make a lamb note holder at her birthday bash. Isn't that the sweetest choice? Can't you just imagine thirteen little cuties proudly running around with their own little lambies?

So I put together adorable little party favor supply bags for each guest:

(I packed the glue and glue supplies separately for the grown-ups to distribute, because who wants free-range glue roaming around at a 4-year-old's party? No one with a 4-year-old. Am I right? Seriously, just thinking about it makes me shudder.)

All filed neatly:

In a cute reusable box:

With a birthday message for the birthday girl that can be used as a table topper or birthday card:

All wrapped up with pretty coordinating ribbon for the birthday girl to open before her party:

You know, to make her feel extra special! How fun!

It's party time made simpler!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Paper Storage Cube

I saw this post over at Family Fun and I knew I had to give it a go. I have so much 12" x 12" paper that needs to be organized. And since I always have extra used shipping boxes, I figured this project would fit within my designated crafting budget of: Practically Free.

I did mine a tad differently than the awesome people over at Family Fun, because I wanted my storage cube a little extra fancy. And even though I love the idea of repurposing used boxes, I didn't want any cardboard to show.

Here's what you'll need for my version:

3 used shipping boxes
(I used priority mail medium flat rate boxes)
Packing tape
Wrapping paper
3 pieces of pretty scrapbook paper
2 rolls colored duct tape
(buy them at a craft store so you can use a 40% off coupon!)
2 extra random pieces of cardboard

Open up one of your boxes and cut off one whole front side and two middle flaps so it looks like this (when it's turned sideways):

Start duct taping:

Stick in a piece of your pretty scrapbook paper:

And duct tape it in place. And then duct tape some more. You don't need to duct tape those back side flaps because you won't see them when you fold the box back up. This is what the inside of your box should look like at the end of your duct tape bonanza.

Fold your box back up and tape it:

Disclaimer: Mine looks all new because I retouched the addresses out. I don't want the post office to come after me! I'm a little afraid of The Man.

Repeat with the other two boxes and then stack them all up. Wedge an extra random piece of cardboard between each layer for extra stability.

Seal the boxes together with packing tape.

Cover your new paper storage cube with beautiful wrapping paper:

Line the edges at the front of each box with another strip of duct tape. This will cover the seams between your box layers:

Gaze at the beauty:

Fill it up!

Look how great! I realize it's not as sturdy as a beautiful wood storage cube, but it has way more personality! And, since I had almost everything on hand already, I only had to spend about $5 on the white duct tape (yay for coupons!). You just can't beat $5 for organizational beauty.

Happy Crafting!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Conversation With A 4-year-old At 11:06 p.m.

Ella appears in the living room with two of her favorite stuffed animal puppies and declares, "Ummmm...Mommy, I'm going to stay in here for 5 minutes. "

"What are you doing awake?"

"Umm... I just want to come in because you're the sweetest Mommy ever and I missed you."

"But I saw you all day long and you are supposed to be in your room."

"But if I sleep in my room then I miss you. And if you're in Mommy and Daddy's room and if I'm a little bit far in this house then I miss you."

"I'm not in Mommy and Daddy's room. I'm in the living room. And besides, Mommy and Daddy's room is right across from yours."

"I know. You know what I miss the best? It has a wet nose sometimes and it barks."

"Is it indie?"

"It's a puppy that lives in this house. Mommy, pretend I didn't tell you the joke yet."


"Pretend there's invisible cages in this house for puppies and each puppy has a different name and it's on this side of the living room and it's black and white."

"Is it Indie?"


"Mommy? Let's watch the show."

"The show is over."

Pretend coughs. "Ehem....If I have a snack I can brush my teeth again."

"I'm not having a snack."

"No, I need something that is tiny. I really need something to eat. I'm not teasing. I'm starrrrrrrving! I really need one."

"What would you like?"


"Well, you need to put on your pajama shirt first."

"Mommy, I have a plan! I put on my pajama shirt and you get me a snack."

She pets her little stuffed animal puppy.

"When I pet her, her head is the softest."

She runs to her room and brings out her pajama shirt.

"Did it! I'm so fast! After I put my arms in, I will get a snack. Okay?"


I cut her a piece of oatmeal bar that we made together earlier.

"Mmmmm! I love these. Do you know why? Because it has raisins and I love raisins!"

"They're actually cranberries, not raisins."

"Oh! Okay. I love cranberries, too! What letter makes the 'cran' sound?"


"What letter makes the 'berry' sound?"


She finishes her oatmeal bar. I tease her:

"Ella, that's weird, I thought I gave you an oatmeal bar. Where did it go?"

"It's in my tummy, Silly!"

"Okay, it's time for bed."

"Are you going to bed now, too?"



"Because it's late and I need to go to bed."

She crawls on the floor like a puppy. "I'm looking for the big crumb. I know it's here somewhere. Mommy! I'm a puppy and I'm

trying to chase my tail and I'm trying to bite my tail." She tries to catch her own bottom.

"Mommy, say, 'Come here and sit.'"

"Puppy, come here and sit."

"When I stand up, you say, 'I didn't know you could stand up, puppy.'"

She stands up.

"Hmmmm... I didn't know you could stand up, puppy."

"That's because I'm a person!"

And she runs to brush her teeth. She's in the bathroom for a good 5 minutes and when I go to check on her I find all the toothbrushes lined up on the counter.

"I organized!"

"Yes, you did, sweetie pie. Let's go to bed. Do you want to sleep in Mommy and Daddy's room?"


She grabs her pup pups and hurls herself into the bed. We cuddle up and she wraps her sweet little arms around my neck.

"Mommy, you know I love you, right?"

"Yes, you know I love you, right?"


And I do. I love her so, so much.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Chickie Craft Kit for Kids

Here's my new Chickie Craft Kit for Kids!

So, so sweet. It includes all the materials to create the nest, the chickies, and the nest sign. You and your child can make this craft together and display it as a beautiful springtime decoration year after year.

And Whoo Boy! This craft kit was a long time coming.

Sometimes I decide to try out a craft and it works perfectly and Boom! it's a craft kit. Sometimes I decide to try out a craft and it fails miserably and it never becomes a craft kit. If I find myself cursing at the crafting materials or the crafting process, forget it, no kit. Like this one. Total pain in the butt. I hated that wire.

But sometimes I have a craft that I have to set aside for a while to really figure it all out. I loved this craft from the get-go, but I felt like it was missing something.

This is what happened. A year ago I made this chickie craft with Ella. And, oh, how she loved making those chickies.

She called them "Chickie Chickie Chickie." She loved them and took care of them and kissed them. And she would take them out of their nest and sleep with them. For months and months.

And she still has them. Whenever she comes across a stray chickie (they've long since left their nest) she squeals, "CHICKIE!" and gives it a little snuggle.

Even with all that love, I felt that for this craft to become a Kid Kit, I needed to Martha-Stewart it up a bit. I couldn't figure it out, so I set it aside for a while.

Back to the present. Luckily, my sister-in-law, Ali, is a crafting genius. I go to her with all my crafting questions. We're very good at bouncing ideas off of each other to come up with a solution. She's really quite awesome. Thank you, Ali!

So, I presented her with my Chickie woes and she had the genius idea that the nest needed a cute little sign. And that was all I needed to start the Fancying Up process. It's all about the accessories.

I'm so glad I came back to this craft. Because I LOVE it!


When Peyton and Ella saw the new design, they wanted to make some chickies, too. We made the nests and the chickies and the signs. Peyton got a little impatient waiting for his nest to be done (it takes a day or two for the liquid starch to dry). So we used a hairdryer to help it dry faster. Smart thinking, right?

Here's a very small, but very important tip: Even if your son begs to use the hairdryer, and even if the hairdryer is set on low, make sure you watch that kid EVERY SINGLE SECOND. Because, guess what? If you turn your head away for exactly one moment, the boy will forget he is supposed to be drying the nest. And he'll watch his sister make a Lego plane while the hairdryer is still on and then you will have a brand-new, perfectly round burn mark in the middle of your carpet. He's lucky that he's so cute.

Did you know that even fast race car drivers like to make chickies in a nest? And did you know that they like to accessorize their chickies? I assumed that he would want his chickies plain. Nope! But he did insist on all orange flowers for his, because orange is his most favorite color ever in the world. "Mommy, take my picture like this!"

"Peace!" See what I mean? He's adorable. What am I to do?

And apparently, even Tonka truck drivers aren't afraid to show a little affection now and then. Also, they like pink flower accessories on their chickies.

Look at all that stuff:

Let me tell you, it was quite the puzzle trying to fit all those materials into this box.
Luckily, my years of playing Tetris prepared me for such a feat.

Happy Crafting!


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