Saturday, October 30, 2010

BOO Pumpkins

Last year I bought some craft pumpkins at an after Halloween sale. I pretty much buy all my holiday decorations after the actual holiday. But not the day after the holiday when everything is 50% off. Oh no! It has to be like a week or two after the holiday. When everything is 75% off. Or, even better, 90% off! Because that's what separates the bargain shopper from the super-risk-taker because by that time most of the good stuff is gone. That right there takes some skill. It makes me all tingly just thinking about it. If a penny saved is a penny earned, I would be a rich, rich woman. But I'm not, so obviously the clearance sale portion of that theory is a bunch of crap. 

Anyway! I buy my decorations and then I have to put them straight away into their respective storage boxes, and I forget about them a little. And then I get to open them the next year, Yay! It's so fun! Like Christmas morning on Halloween decorating day or Easter decorating day or Christmas decorating day or.... 

So, I got these pumpkins for something crazy like $1 each. When I got them out of their box on Halloween decorating day, I knew I wanted:

A) To paint them white with some cute polka dots.
Because I love real orange pumpkins, but fake orange foam pumpkins, not so much. And, because I do love a polka dot.

Do you know how hard it is to paint something that resembles a circle on a bumpy pumpkin? It's quite difficult. I might possibly have spent a large amount of time mumbling "Stupid! Grumble grumble. Darn you! Grumble. We're out of glue! Grumble. I will conquer you, circles! Grumble. Circles!" as I tried to pull this off.


B) To spell out BOO on them. 
They are exactly the same size, so I didn't feel like I could pull off this awesomeness like my sister-in-law, Ali. I know! She's craftilicious!

The letters started out much, much smaller and kept getting much, much bigger as I tried to make them all even and pretty. Ah well. They make a statement, that's for sure.

Bam! That B isn't taking any prisoners.

And then the middle of the O's were begging for some spider webs. I kind of love them.

And, now,  the moment you've all been waiting for!

BOO pumpkins!

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Monster Rap!

I just made our traditional Halloween video on JibJab! Traditional as in I made my first one last year. Anyway.. It's so fun! And so freeeeeee! Well, some of them are free  - like the ones I did. You know how I roll.
Click on the titles to check 'em out! (Sometimes they take a while to load, you have to be patient - but it's worth it!)

Monster Rap 

DJ: Darcy
Dracula: Peyton
Frankenstein's Monster:  G.G.
Witch: Ella
Mummy: James

This video, and the one from last year, needs 5 characters. Last year I included our dog. This year I used Peyton's stuffed bear, G.G. Peyton and Ella could NOT figure out who played Frankenstein's Monster even though G.G. is an integral member of our family. But after they watched it a few times, they thought it was hilarious.

And, just because I could, and mostly because it was free, I also made a cool Star Wars video:

Star Wars

Luke Skywalker: Peyton
Hans Solo: James
Princess Leia: Ella
Lando: Darcy

My kids love these! We watch them over and over and over and over and...

Go make one!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Desktop Organizer

I have a little spot in my kitchen, by the phone, that had been a itchin' for an office-type desktop organizer. And then I found this in a thrift store for $4. Oh, the beautifying potential! Oh, the organizing of stuff potential! Fantasizing about it all made me drunk on the crafting possibilities.

James primered it and then spray painted it white for me. But the insides of the slots refused to take a nice coat of paint. No matter, it had been in the back of my mind to paper that sucker anyway. Sometimes you just gotta go where the craft train takes you. All aboooooard! And don't forget to bring some wine!

I probably have about 3 million pieces of scrapbook paper in my collection, but I couldn't figure out what I wanted to use. I agonized over it for days. Days! I tell you! Really, it was ridiculous. Finally I picked a piece, cut it to fit, and put it in place:

And then I almost fell asleep looking at it because it was so boring. Maybe not boring for another room, but my kitchen is colorful, gosh darn it! This little organizer needed some pizzazz!

Hells yes! That's better!

So I Mod Podged that paper into all the little slots:

And I'm usually not all about the embellishments, but the front definitely needed a little sumpin sumpin so...

It just makes me happy.

After I filled it, I noticed that the papers in the large slot kept falling forward. So I took some of my leftover scrapbook paper and glued it onto a file folder that I had cut. It keeps the papers where they need to be and it matches the organizer. Our cell phones immediately claimed the bottom slots. A small hole drilled in the back of the organizer for the cords and it's a cute little charging station.

I couldn't be happier with it! It just brightens my day!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Leaf Suncatcher Party Kit

It's been on the grand To Do List to set up a Leaf Suncatcher Party Kit. I was lagging on that particular task until one cool mom asked me to create a Sharing Day activity for her son's classroom. Sometimes I just need a little push! 

Introducing my new Leaf Suncatcher Party Kit! 

When Ella saw all the supplies out, she wanted to make another one. In her 4 1/2 years she's made about 20 of these. For some reason (C'mon! You know the reason! The Leaf Suncatcher craft is awesome yo!), my kids never get tired of making this craft.

Notice the new frame paper we used. I call it Disco Corn Cob Funk. Ella loves it.

Anyway! Back to the party kit.

Individual craft supply bags for each party guest (or student):

And I always include some:

All labeled and sweetly packaged:

But really it looks like this so it will all fit when I close up the box:

In a cute reusable box:

With a special message that can be used as a table topper or birthday card:

All wrapped up with pretty coordinating ribbon for the birthday boy or girl to open before the party (or special day):

It's party time (or sharing day) made simpler!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Schoolwork Organization Box

If my house isn't (mostly) organized, I go a little nuts. Now that Peyton and Ella are both in school, the amount of schoolwork that barrages our household each week is staggering. So, I made a system. 

I do love me a system.

I found these boxes on sale at Walmart for $5 each.

I know I could have made them super fancy and embellished. But sometimes I think it's important for kids to decorate their own stuff. It gives them a little extra pride in ownership, you know? 

So I got out the old art tablecloth and the Sharpie markers. Getting out the Sharpies is A BIG DEAL in our house, since my kids are not allowed to come within a 5 foot radius of the Sharpie cup. They can gaze longingly it from afar, but that's it. So whenever I bring that cup to the table OH BOY! IT'S A PARTY. 

Sharpies (and any kind of paint) seem to create the atmosphere for a super exciting art project. Even if they are just being used to decorate a simple box.

Those kids really put some time and effort into their boxes.

And I love how they turned out.

"Mommy, I want you to take a picture of this side."

"And this side."

And he made me take a picture of all four sides. I love how proud he is of his artwork.

Anyway, when they come home from school, we toss all the schoolwork into the boxes.

I made some cute title pages for each month and dropped them in the bottom of the box. At the end of the month, I grab that month's title page, a binder clip, and the school work and clip it all together. 

And then the kids can continue dropping their incoming schoolwork on top of the pile because it is automatically separated from the previous month. Because I really don't want to be dating every single piece of paper that comes home, but I would like a general idea of when it was created. 

Then, at the end of the year, when I pull everything out, the months are already divided for me. If I want to keep something, I can date it by month and file it away in the permanent school folder. 

It just makes my world a little less chaotic. And it works for us.


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