Monday, December 31, 2012

Resolutions and Unofficial Resolutions

As the year comes to a close, I can't sleep.  It's almost 2 am and I'm still up.  Joy.

I always try to limit myself to three New Year's Resolutions as I think three is a good number to keep track of and I'm a musician.  Music and threes go well together.  I don't know.  Whatever.  I thought I'd go for three.

Don't judge.  

#1.  Get my kids to stop fighting so much.  They're after each other and I'm so tired of the bickering and picking.  I need to find some books or websites or something.  HELP!  If you all have any ideas on how to get my 9 and 6 1/2 year old to stop fighting, please fill me in.  They're driving me bonkers!

#2.  Use what I have and then, if I need something buy it.  I tend to "stock up".  For example,  I  have a favorite eyebrow pencil and it's sometimes hard to come by.  So, when I find it, I'll buy like four of those buggers.  Then, the next time I'm at the store, I'll see it again and I'll pick up another two and all of a sudden I'll have six or seven in my drawer.  That kind of thing happens with random stuff in my house.  Not everything.  Not all the time, but it happens.  So, that's the reason for resolution #2.  Plus, it is kinda like my usual "get organized and clean up my crap" resolution that I make every. single. year.  So, I think it's kind of a variation on a theme.  At least it's more focused.

#3.  I have a savings goal.  It's a number.  I'm not going to share it, but it's there.  In my brain.  I'd like to reach it.  Some day I'd like to move into a house with more land and maybe two stories.  More privacy would be WONDERFUL!  Some day I'd like to pee without having to close the shade.  Ya know?  So, resolution #3 gets me to that "dream home".  

There you have it. Well......

Ok.  Here's a teeny, tiny #4.  I guess you can call it an "unofficial resolution".  Continue to work on my photography skills.  I love the feeling I get when I get a shot and it's wonderful.

Ok.  Another.  #5.  Use Facebook less and blog more.  I do feel the need to share.  Perhaps blogging would feel better.  I could write and put it out there and I don't have to worry about feedback.  Sometimes I'm just sharing a picture for my mom and then I have like 300+ friends looking at it.  It's nice that they "like" my kids picture in front of the Christmas tree and all, but really, it was for Grammy and Papa (and maybe a few close friends) to see.  That's all.  I'm thinking my blog would be my artificial filter.  Really it's my close family and friends that read my silly little blog anyways, so there it is.

As I see it.  I still have 22 hours to think of more "unofficial resolutions".  Maybe now I can get some sleep.  Enjoy the last of 2012!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Life happens

So, I turn around and it's December.  I don't know how it happens.  Summer comes and I'm consumed with summer activities and taking the kids to all these great things and then the school year starts and my new semester begins.  I turn around and then  POOF!  The year is gone!  I don't know how it happens.

I guess life happens.

Here's to hoping I can blog better in 2013.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

DIY:  Fantastic Teacher Appreciation Pots
Teacher Appreciation Week is May 7-11, 2012.  Here is a super cute craft to show your child's teacher how much you appreciate all that they do.   

What you need:
Acrylic Paint
Chalkboard Paint
Paint Brush
Black Sharpie
Flexible Ruler
Flower of your choice

Start with a pot in a size of your choosing.

Using acrylic paint, paint the top rim yellow.  

Using chalkboard paint, paint the bottom part.  I just "eyeballed" the edge, but I'm sure you could tape the edge if you wanted.   I put on three coats of the chalkboard paint.  Follow the directions on the paint that you purchase.  

I used a tape measure to get equal distance between the long lines.  First, I just made little marks.  

Then, I came back and made the longer--I went to the groove in the rim of the pot.  

More "eyeballing".  I made a middle-sized line in "about the middle".  

Then I numbered the long lines.  

After that,  I just put in three little lines between each of the longer/middle-sized lines.  

I put in a plant I thought our children's teachers and educational assistants  would like and used a piece of chalk to write "Thanks for helping me grow!" on the pot.  
These teacher appreciation gifts were a big hit!  I hope you enjoy making the pots!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Music Stand Makeover Tutorial

 Turn your old music stand new again with a bit of stand paper, spray paint designed for metal (in a color of your choosing), and some time.

Here's my "Music Stand Makeover".

Here is a music stand that I have that is starting to show some wear and tear.  It has some rust on the bottom, paint is chipping off and it is getting some scuffs and scratches.  It looks like a stand that you might also find at a garage sale or in your basement.  You can easily give it a new life and a new look.  

You can see the paint is chipping off and the rust on the feet.  

Sand down the stand with some sandpaper to paint chipped area smooth.  Then, wipe clean with a wet cloth.  

See, no more chipped areas.  The feet are all sanded down.  
I used Rust-oleum Painter's Touch Ultra Cover 2X Satin Finish Spray Paint in Wildflower Blue.  
Put your stand on some cardboard or plastic in a well-ventilated area or outside.  Use short bursts of paint about 12-16" away from your stand.  Put on thin layer of paint, let it dry completely then put another layer of paint.  

There's me spraying the stand.  Pictures via my 8-year old son.   I promised him I'd include it in the blog since he took the picture.  ;)  Thanks, son.  
Completely covered stand waiting to dry.  

After it's completely dry, you've got a stand with a whole new life to it.   I've always wanted a neat-o, cool-color stand, but never had the money to buy one.  Since I used a stand that I already owned, this cost me all of $3.00!    I can't wait to surprise my students next week with this cool Wildflower Blue stand!  I think they'll love it, because I know I do!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Fabric Pom Pom Tutorial

DIY:  Fabric Pom Pom Tutorial

What you need:  
Sharp scissors
Chinese lantern (my lantern was 9.5".  You could very easily make your pom-pom smaller)
fabric--I used 3 yards for my 9.5" lantern.  
Hot glue gun
Glue sticks--lots and lots
Something about 3.25" across to trace a circles onto the fabric.  I used my sandwich cutter.  
Chinese Lantern before I started applying fabric.

Trace your circles onto your doubled up fabric and then cut into squares, then cut into the circles.  
Fabric doubled up and ready to be cut into two circles.
This is a pile of about 200 circles.
I made about 700 circles!  I cut while I watched TV.  

Add a small dab of hot glue to the center of the circle. 

Fold in half.  

Add another dab of hot glue to this folded piece.  

Fold in half again.  Hold until the hot glue cools a bit and the glue is set.  

Do over and over and over.......
Put the glue directly on the lantern, alternating the direction you place your fabric piece. 
Hold your fabric piece until the glue sets.  
About a quarter of the way through the the process.
Be sure to alternate the direction you put your fabric pieces.
Once the lantern is completely covered, tie a ribbon from the lantern frame and hang.  

After you do it about a gazillion times, you will have this super cute fabric pom pom!
Now I'm off to make two more for my music studio!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

I've been busy burning my fingers with my hot glue gun all week...

I can't wait to show you what I've been up to this week.  This project, I expected to take a couple of days has taken me all week and I'm still working.  AND DAMN!--the hot glue!  MY POOR FINGERS!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Yarn Grass Wreath Tutorial

Easy and cute yarn "grass" wreath.  

What you need:
12" green foam wreath
2 skeins Lime colored "Fun Fur" yarn
hot glue gun and sticks
Flower "ribbon" embellishment (as many as you like on your wreath)
Paper, colored pencil, and a toothpick for the "bare feet welcome" sign
About 18" ribbon in the color of your choice to hang your wreath.  

How to make your own Yarn Grass Wreath:  
Hot glue the yarn to the green wreath.  Use a green wreath so if it peeks through, it won't be noticeable.  Wrap and wrap and wrap.  After you wrap a few inches, you can "fluff" it up by rubbing the yarn with your finger tips.  Super easy.  

This is as far as the first skein got on the 12" wreath.  Secure the other end of the yarn to the wreath with hot glue.  Start and end the next skein of yarn with a dot of hot glue again too.  

Wreath covered in the "Fun Fur" yarn.   Then hot glue the flowers where you like.  

Make the "bare feet welcome" sign and hot glue to the the toothpick.  Stick toothpick in the wreath. 
Tie ribbon and hang.  Done!  

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Canvas and Paper Flower

Inspired by yet another pinterest project.    Good golly, do I love Pinterest!

Fun and Easy Fleece Flower Pillow

Super easy fleece flower pillow:  

This could easily be done by a responsible 5th or 6th grader with some hot glue gun experience.  Here's a link to the flower pillow tutorial.  Super fun and easy.  It cost me $3 for the fleece.  I had the yellow felt and the fiberfill already in my craft room.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Ribbon Wreath Tutorial

I made a ribbon wreath for my daughter's door this afternoon.  Inspiration:  Pinterest.  It's not my favorite finished project, as I think it looks a little manic, but maybe that's what my 5-year-old needs.  Manic.  

What you need: 
10-12" wire wreath form
TONS AND TONS of ribbon
scissors.  I used pinking shears.
hot glue gun
little wooden plaque 
Letter stickers
How to make your ribbon wreath:
Cut your ribbons to about 6-8 inches in length and start to tie them around the wire wreath form.  
I tied each ribbon around two of the four wires.  That way it would cover more space.  

Tie, tie, tie...until your hands are tired.
Take a break.  
Tie, tie, tie.....
Take a break.  

Once you're happy with how "full" your wreath is, trim the ribbons so they are all the same length and you have your desired look.

Paint your little wooden "plaque" and let dry completely.
Stick on the letter stickers and hot glue some ribbon to the back of the plaque on one side.
You could also use the "Rub-On" letters that you can find at your local scrapbook stores, but I had letter stickers handy, so that's what I used.
Feed the ribbon around the wreath and then glue the ribbon to the other side of the plaque so that the plaque lays nicely.  You could also have two pieces of ribbon on the plaque and tie a bow on the wreath.  It's up to you!  Super easy craft.

You could also have a little helper with this craft, if you can trust them with scissors.

Voila!  You're done!
This craft took me about 2.5 hours from start to finish.

Sunday, January 22, 2012