Frames with Christmas Balls…

OMG!!!  I had the MOST FUN making these gifts for my kids teachers!  Based on the reactions from the recipients, they REALLY LIKED them also!

I realize this is a Christmas decor/gift idea, but I wanted to post it now so that you could be on the hunt for after Christmas sales on ball ornaments.  Now would be a great time to collect the ornaments and make gifts for Christmas this year.  Be sure to purchase balls with color, not just gold & silver, for the perfect effect.

Supplies needed for this project: frames, ball ornaments, wood initial, ribbon (both thin & wide with wire), spray paint, E6000 glue, short zip ties.

For the frames, you can find old beat up ones at yard sales for quite inexpensive.  I also made several from scrap wood that we had at the house.  Either way, spray paint the frames in fun Christmas colors.  Any kind of spray paint will work, so find the least expensive one you can.

Once the frames are dry, tie THIN ribbon strands around the top piece of wood, letting 7 total strands of ribbon hang all the way to the bottom.  This gives you extra ribbon so you can have the perfect length of each ball dangling.  You will want to mix up the lengths as you create your piece of art.  Next, tie the balls onto the ribbon and adjust the ribbon as necessary to get the appropriate varying lengths.  Be sure to triple knot the ribbon on the balls.  Cut the excess ribbon.

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Paint the wood initial in a coordinating color.  Let dry.  Using E6000, glue the ribbon onto the back of the initial and let glue dry.  You may have a better idea on how to attach the initial to the ribbon.  If so, go for it!  Tie the initial on to the top piece of wood, just as you did with the balls.  Adjust the length of the ribbon as necessary.  Once all of the balls and initial are tied on, slide the ribbon to the center of the wood.

For the bow, use a coordinating wired ribbon and create a large full bow.  For bow making steps, look under the section of gift wrapping in my blog.  Attach the bow to the center of the top piece of wood.

To create a hanger on the back, I used small zip ties that I purchased at The Dollar Tree.  I created a small loop around the back of the ribbon, where it is attached to the frame.  Leave the zip tie loop large enough for a wreath hanger to fit through it.  By attaching the zip tie to the ribbon, it allows the ribbon to be shifted as necessary for centering, to the left or right, along the frame when hanging the frame on the wall.

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You are now ready to hang your frame, or gift it to someone special.

Have fun creating!!!

“Wonder what I will come up with next”…

Creating Gift Tags From Christmas Cards…

Have you ever wondered what you should do with all of the GORGEOUS Christmas cards that you receive?  A few years ago, I decided to save them for a future use.  This year I decided to repurpose them as gift tags.  It’s a simple way to recycle something beautiful.

The items you will need: Used Christmas cards, colorful cardstock, paper cutter, glue stick, hole punch, twine or thin ribbon, embellishments, such as rhinestones, and your imagination!

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This is my favorite paper cutter!  I’ve had it for years and it works great!

I use colorful cardstock quite frequently and I always save the scraps.

To create gift tags, start by cutting the image on the card you would like to save.  Next, cut a piece of cardstock in a coordinating color.  Be sure to cut the cardstock slightly larger than the image, which will leave a “color” border.  Use a glue stick to attach the image to the cardstock.  Embellish with rhinestones, if appropriate.  Punch a hole in the corner, or center it on the gift tag.  Place a ribbon or piece of twine through the hole and you have created a gift tag!

I haven’t punched the holes and added the ribbon with these, but you can see how fun they are.  If you don’t have used Christmas cards, you can also use festive scrapbook paper for the image.

Happy cutting!

“Wonder what I will come up with next”…

“Flaking” Your Friends & Neighbors…

If you saw my last blog post, you read that my entire family made snowflakes on Christmas Eve this year.  Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, adults and kids included!  We were having so much fun sitting around the table cutting out our amazing creations.  There was even some friendly competition involved, and a little teasing for the “not so creative” snowflakes.  As I was enjoying the moment, I paused to really take it all in!  I mean, SERIOUSLY!  How many families sit around the dining table cutting out snowflakes and laughing on Christmas Eve?!?!  It was an ALL FUN AND NO STRESS, good time at my house!  I looked at the mound of paper snowflakes that was accumulating on the table and thought, “What in the world am I going to do with ALL THESE SNOWFLAKES???”  I don’t want to toss them in the garbage…no way!  They are to cool for that!  Then it hit me:

We can go “FLAKE” my neighbors!!!!

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…and that’s exactly what we did!  We bundled up in our warm coats and tried to be as stealth as we could, putting snowflakes in 3 of my neighbors yards.  We hung them in the trees, on their cars, and even dropped them on the lawn and walk ways.  We left a note on the front porch that said:

“You’ve been FLAKED”

It was a Christmas Eve to remember!  My neighbors woke up to a Christmas morning surprise from my family!  Snowflakes in their yard…in California!

“Wonder what I will come up with next”…

Simple 6 Point Snowflakes…

Making snowflakes is a fun craft for the entire family!  This year on Christmas Eve, my entire family got involved in the fun.

All you need is square paper and scissors, and you can create the most magnificent snowflakes.  I will show you how to make snowflakes with 6 points.

Start with a square piece of paper.  Here I used 12×12 scrapbook paper.  Fold the paper in half, corner to corner, as shown in the middle picture above, creating a triangle.  Then fold the triangle in half.

Hold your triangle with the main fold on the left, main point facing down and the top of the triangle the straight edge.  Fold from the bottom point, one third of the triangle towards the center (see picture #1 above).  You will have two thirds of the triangle folded over itself at this point.  Next, fold the remaining third, coming from the right side, over the fold you just made (see picture in the center above).  Flip the paper over and notice the area on top where there is a straight edge of paper with points sticking out from it.  It has the appearance of “fries” sticking out of a triangle shaped fry box. (See the last picture above)

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Cut the paper across the straight edge of the paper so you cut off the “fries”.

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Now comes the fun part!!  In order to have dimension in your snowflake, you want the main folded area to remain longer and cut a shorter side where the open folds are.  See picture above.  This will become the main shape of your snowflake.

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Now you will cut areas out to create the “holes” in the snowflake.  Be sure not to cut the entire folded area on either side.  If you do, your snowflake will fall apart.  See the picture above.  See the picture below to view the above cut opened up.

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This is what the final snowflake looks like.

Here are the pictures shown again, but side by side, so you can compare the cut paper before and after.

Above is a 2nd snowflake with more narrow points.

This gives you an idea of what two different snowflakes will look like.

Have fun cutting!  See my next blog post for some fun and creative ideas on what to do with all of your snowflakes!

“Wonder what I will come up with next”…

Easy Ornament Decorations

Any time there is a holiday, teachers are looking for fun ways to decorate their classrooms.  Over the Christmas holiday, I helped my daughters class make these ornaments with their photos on them.  You could replicate this ornament for ANY holiday!

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I used glitter foam cutouts shaped like a Christmas ball, but you could create these with any shapes.

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Use a paper punch to create a hole in the cutout.  I used a scalloped circle for the Christmas ball, but you could use a heart punch to create a Valentine’s Day ornament.

Glue festive scrapbook paper to the back so that it covers the punch hole.  Be sure to cut the paper so it isn’t larger than the cutout.

Punch a small hole at the top and thread string through it to create a hanger.

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Add a picture and the date with glitter glue and you have a festive ornament.

Happy creating.

“Wonder what I will come up with next”…

Holiday Gift Spreadsheet. It’s time to start shopping!!!

November is here and it’s time to get SERIOUS about holiday shopping!

How many of you are saying to yourself…”This girl is CRAZY!  It’s ONLY the 1st of November!”  Well, yes, I am crazy, but crazy can be a GOOD thing!  I have attached a spreadsheet that I use to keep track of the gifts I need to buy and the gifts I have already purchased.  If you start NOW…you will enjoy the holiday season SOOOOOOOO much more!!!  I usually start my holiday shopping in August or September.  This allows me to spend less money per month on gifts, spreading the cost out.  I rarely use credit cards to purchase gifts, so I am not left with the post holiday bills to pay.  Starting early also takes the stress off of the buying process.  I aim to be finished shopping by Thanksgiving.  I usually don’t make that goal, but I am usually darn close.  I am not usually out shopping during the craziest weeks in December.  AND…if I am out shopping, it is because I WANT to be shopping, not because I HAVE to be shopping.

On the spreadsheet, there is a column for “Who” the gift recipient is, “Budget” amount, “Spent” amount, and “Gifts”.  In the “Gifts” area, I use the space for gift ideas, and what I have purchased.  I color code the lettering depending on where in the buying process I am.  For instance, “black” letters are for ideas, “blue” letters are for purchased items, and “red” letters are for gifts I have already distributed.  This allows you to keep a very close watch on all of your gift movement.

I dare you to try it “my way” and hope you have a VERY MERRY HOLIDAY SEASON!!!  I ALWAYS DO!!

Happy Shopping…

“Wonder what I will come up with next”…

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Fun styrofoam snowmen…

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These snowmen are so cute, and they were so easy to make!!!

Start with styrofoam balls and cones.  Use a toothpick & glue to place the ball on top of the cone.  Put half of the toothpick in the top of the cone and the other half into the ball.  I used cut pipe cleaners for the eyes, nose, mouth, buttons, & some scarves.  Just push in the cut pipe cleaners.  No glue is needed.  Cut black felt for the top hats.  I created a cylinder with the felt and glued it.  Then I glued the cylinder to a circle to create the top hat.  If you want a felt scarf, cut a long rectangle of felt and tie it around the neck.  This is so easy!  It would be a fun craft to do with your kids!

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Happy crafting…

“Wonder what I will come up with next”…