05th Feb2013

Tutorial Tuesday: Rock Candy

by HippieKender

I have never made rock candy… ever.  Does this seem strange to you?  My husband thought it was strange.  But, when I saw this tutorial, I knew I had to try it.  I used my kids as an excuse – it’s a learning experience, they’ll have so much fun, they’ll have a yummy treat! – but really,  it was for my amusement.

I found this tutorial over at Science Bob.  I followed the directions, mostly.  I think I added more sugar than the tutorial calls for.  It does say to keep adding sugar until you can’t add anymore… so that’s what I did.  All I had were giant wooden skewers that were pointy on one end. Hubby helped me cut off the pointy end so the kids didn’t stab themselves in the mouth in their eagerness to consume pure sugar.

I originally planned to make 2 rock candies, but when hubby saw what I was doing, he begged me to make him one too.

   brewing

Here they are, sitting… the tutorial says to let it sit for 3-7 days.

rock candy

We waited for almost 2 weeks because the hubby and kids decided they were willing to wait to see just how big the rock candy would get.

After 2 weeks it seemed to have grown as much as it would.  I think it was worth the wait, do you?

Sam - Nomnom

I did try to explain the science behind the rock candy, but I think the kids were more interested in eating it than learning about it.

Cakes - Nomnom

Here’s my attempt at a close-up of the rock candy.  I just think it looks neat.

Rock Candy - Finished

Now that the candy has been enjoyed, how the heck do I clean this mess out of my glasses?

glass - after

What do you think?  Is this something you would try?

Is there a tutorial you would like to see me try?

Did you make rock candy as a child?

31st Dec2012

Christmas Crafting 2012

by HippieKender

Every Christmas I try to do a little crafting. Usually an ornament for the tree. I generally make the same style for everyone, with different colors or whatnot.  Sometimes I throw in a few other handcrafted ideas- if the mood strikes- but generally it’s just the ornaments.  This year I decided to change things up. For reasons I can’t explain, I felt the loved ones in my life deserved more than just an ornament. Maybe it’s Pinterest or maybe it’s the fact that I have 5 free hours each day to do whatever I want with (you know, after the laundry, errands, and other housework is done).  Or, maybe I am becoming more confident in my crafting abilities to venture a little out of my comfort zone.  Whatever the reason, it made this Christmas a little hectic, a little stressful, but also a little more fulfilling.

I apologize in advance for what is sure to be a lengthy post. I have a bit to say about each of the projects, both good and bad.

First on my list of Christmas crafts were yoga bags for my Aunt and Uncle. My Aunt had talked to me a while back (months and months ago) about making a “manly” yoga bag for my Uncle. When she asked me I didn’t have the time or the space to take on big sewing projects. We were living with my husband’s grandmother and had 1 room that served as our bedroom, the hangout spot, crafting spot, etc. I never wanted to make large crafting messes and didn’t have the space to leave projects out for longer than I was actually sitting there to attend them. But, I digress…
This year, I remembered I had a yoga bag pattern from Amy Butler. I also decided that if I was making 1 yoga bag, why not make 2 (birds and stones and all that).  My Aunt and Uncle do yoga together (aww, isn’t that cute!), so I thought making them each a yoga bag would be a nice idea. I started on my Aunt’s first. She’s a very earthy person – not a crunchy granola type, but more of a down-to-earth kind of person while still being fun. She wears a lot of neutrals and earth tones so I wanted a bag that reflected her style.

HippieKender: Earthy Yoga Bag

My machine had a lot of trouble sewing through some of the thicker parts. I thought it was maybe because of the interfacing (it couldn’t possibly be my amazing machine!!), so when I made my Uncles I didn’t use interfacing.  My machine didn’t have an easier time sewing his, so unless you don’t mind a floppy yoga bag, I would use the interfacing. I sent ouf pics of both bags to a dear friend of mine to get her opinion.  She asked me if there was such a thing as a “manly” yoga bag. I wasn’t sure. What do you think?

HippieKender: Manly Yoga Bag

The outside is a micro-suede type fabric in grey. The lining is a darker grey (not the purple it looks like here) cotton.  He loved the bag and declared it manly enough.  In fact, they both loved their bags so much they enrolled in some classes for next month! I couldn’t be happier!  My Aunt even suggested that I make them to sell.  I’m not completely sold (ha ha get it?) on the idea, but it’s something to keep in mind.

Next up on the crafting agenda was clothing for my daughter’s American Girl.  Standard 18″ doll clothes fit the AG dolls really well so I checked out my local craft/fabric stores and saw that Joann’s was having a 5/$5 Simplicity pattern sale. I ran right over and picked up 10 patterns – 7 of which were for 18″ dolls. Apparently I had great aspirations for making an entire wardrobe for my daughter’s doll, but that just didn’t happen. I ended up only using 2 of the patterns.  I used different fabrics to make 2 similar outfits.The pattern is Simplicity 2458, view A (in case you were wondering).

HippieKender: Paisley Print Outfit AG 18in Doll                 HippieKender: Tiger Print Outfit AG 18in Doll

 

I got lazy towards the end and only made 1 vest. I told myself I would jazz up the tiger print by making a headband with cute little cat ears. That never happened. I did find this tutorial over on Three Sisterz website for an easy AG headband, but making and adding the ears proved to be too much for me and I scrapped the whole idea. I may go back to it at some point, because the headband itself is very cute.  I’m still not sold on the vest/bolero thing.

Next up was a matching apron set (pattern Simplicity 1936, view A again).  I debated for quite awhile on the fabric, but since I have a very limited stash, I grabbed one that is my daughter’s favorite. I didn’t have enough bias tape to even come close to trimming out both aprons, so I did have to go to the store and pick up a few packs.  My daughter loves to help me in the kitchen, so helpfully she will love wearing her new apron also!

HippieKender: Girl and Doll Aprons - AG 18in Doll                       HippieKender: AG Apron 18in Doll

I did lose the pocket piece for my daughter’s apron just before I started sewing it, but hopefully she won’t mind. I’m not sure what the pocket is for. I don’t store extra food in my pockets while I cook, do you? in any case, I did find the pocket (after presents had been wrapped, of course) so if she decides she wants a pocket, I can easily add it.

That’s what’s great about these doll clothes. Sure, they are tiny and sometimes fiddly and awkward, but generally they are easy to whip up – possibly easier than “normal” sized clothes.  Don’t get me wrong, they were time consuming, taking hours for each outfit, but I would definitely make more. In fact, I was thinking about making doll clothes to sell on Etsy.  But, let’s not get ahead of myself. I have to at least finish this blog post.

The next item I made was actually inspired by a Craft Fail.  I found a pattern online for a Santa hat at Fleece Fun and decided to give it a try. I picked the Children’s Large, printed it out, cut pieces and sewed it up.  I used some corduroy and some faux fur stuff I had. It was fairly simple, but when my daughter tried it on… it was … well, tiny.

HippieKender: Too Small Santa Hat

She did manage to squeeze it on her head though and wore it to school for a week.  I decided her AG needed a hat, too.  I searched for a pattern and came across a tutorial from Puppy52Dolls.  It was made for Blythes, but translates really well for 18in AG dolls too. Fit perfectly, and looks pretty darn cute.

HippieKender: AG Santa Hat 18in Doll

And last but not least, I made a zipper cuff for The Boy.  I found a great tutorial over at A Lemon Squeezy Home.  I kept trying to be sneaky about measuring my son’s wrist, but I guess I was too sneaky and couldn’t remember the measurements when it came time to sew. I just went with the measurements on the tutorial and hoped for the best. The cuff does fit, but it wouldn’t have hurt to add a little length. I’m not even sure how much my son likes it. He’s not very vocal about these things – something you think he hates he could secretly love but be embarrassed to show it.  I tossed in $10 before I wrapped it, so even if he didn’t like the cuff, he would like the cash!  He’s 12 now, so it’s hard to craft for him. Boy sewing projects are few and far between and even fewer and farther between for the pre-teen group.

HippieKender: Zipper Money Cuff

I did manage to get some good crafting in this Christmas – even though I was forced to sneak in craft time while they were at school and after they went to bed.  I didn’t get as much accomplished as I had hoped (I never do). I would have liked to make more doll clothes and maybe seen if I could find some other boyish things to make.  I never did make ornaments with the kids. I didn’t even bake cookies for Santa.  Thank goodness a friend of mine is a teacher and his students gave him too many sugary goodies so he passed on some of the bounty. He gave me some cookies and I found them just in time to put out a plate for Santa (and some carrots for the reindeer).

All throughout this, I was working on a gift for my mom. I had seen the prefect idea on Pinterest (of course) and was rushing to complete it in my short time frame. My mom and I play Scrabble-likes games online all the time. Sometimes she wins and sometimes I win, but it’s always fun.  I decided to make her a wall hanging that looked like a Scrabble game. I found some good information over at Child Made Tutorials.  I loosely followed the instructions… I started with wood blocks.  Lots and lots of wood blocks. A friend helped me (and by “helped me” I of course mean that he did everything) cut down two 1×8′s into 1.5-in squares.

HippieKender: Tiny Wooden Blocks

I took those little blocks and sanded down all the sides.  The original tutorial calls for handmade stamps. I didn’t have time for things like that, so I used an old-school carbon paper trick to trace out and hand paint the letters and numbers. I did end up repainting some of the letters after I arranged them.

HippieKender: DIY Carbon Paper

Was it actually faster? Who knows. Next time I would go with the stamps, for sure.  They’re at least neater than my shaky paint job. But, I did manage to get all the letters painted.  I think it came out to 60-ish.  I had originally thought 75, but forgot to account for the shared letters.

HippieKender: Handpainted Scrabble Tiles

I spray varnished them then glued them together. Let me repeat that, just to be sure you heard me. I varnished, THEN glued. Please, if you try this, do not follow my example. Glue, THEN varnish. The wood glue did NOT want to stick to the varnish, so I was faced with the dilemma of how to get these darn letters to stick together. I didn’t want to sand down all the pieces… again. I started thinking about ways to brace it on the back. My Aunt suggested paint stirrers, but I wasn’t sure how that would work. Looking back it may have been the easiest solution. Instead, hubby suggested getting “metal strips that have holes every inch or so” to screw on the back.  Great, I thought, metal is sturdy, but how will I cut it?  He tells me he can cut it.  I ran to Home Depot and grabbed something similar to his oh-s0-accurate description. When I got it home he says “oh, that’s thicker than I was thinking. I don’t know how to cut that.”  Great. I call my awesome buddy (also known as The King of Everything) and he describes some other stuff that would work, tells me which aisle it will be in, and even says if all else fails… here’s a type of glue that will bond it forever and ever. I run back to Home Depot, return the other metal things, grab what turns out to be plumbers wrap and some screws. I thought about grabbing the Mega Glue, but was afraid it wouldn’t glue the varnish, and what I have should work, so I didn’t buy it.  I kind of wish I had. BUT!!! But, in the end it all worked out. My mom looked like she loved it and Christmas was a success.

HippieKender: Scrabble Tile Wall Hanging
[Note: Pieces are not affixed in this pic. It took me so long to complete this project, I didn't have time to snap a pic of the final thing]

The whole piece wasn’t as secure as I would have liked, but hopefully secure enough to hang on the wall. I included the word “family,” my mom’s name, her husband’s name, his 4 kids’ names, their 2 husbands, my name, my husbands name, and our 2 kids. The entire thing measures approx 15×23″.  Oh! I almost forgot to tell you… when the original metal strips didn’t work and the glue wasn’t holding as well as I would have liked, I decided to try a staple gun. I borrowed one from a friend. I thought maybe if I tossed a couple staples at each joint, it would hold well. I loaded some staples, and lined up the first one. When the staple hit the wood, it not only didn’t embed itself fully, it actually BLEW APART pieces that had been glued together. Yeah, staple gun is a no-no.  Also, pilot holes are important. I did split a couple pieces a little bit.

I always say that I will start crafting earlier next year, but lets be honest… it won’t happen. But I do hope to carry on the tradition of handmade gifts for my loved ones.  Plus, all my Christmas crafting cost me around $25!!  What about you?  Did you make any gifts by hand this year? Did you receive any handmade gifts? Do you wish you did?

Do you want more information about any of these crafts? Ask in the comments below, or message me. I’ll do my best to answer. If there is interest, I can do a separate blog about any of these crafts.  Also, stay tuned for a (much shorter) part 2 post. It will feature the crafting I did that wasn’t for gifts.

Hope your Holiday was merry and bright!

22nd Aug2012

School Drop Station

by HippieKender

Every year at at the start of school, I start the battle to keep the kids’ school stuff organized. It seems that every day I get emails home about important dates, or papers home with important information needed at a later date (usually a couple weeks in advance). I’m always at a loss as to how to keep all this information together while not cluttering up valuable counter space. Tossing papers on the counter also runs the risk of the papers being thrown away. If I leave the kids in charge of the papers, they are lost forever and those important dates come and go, leaving the kids with missing homework assignments, missed social events, etc.

This year, I have a plan (an evil plan?)! While feeding my Pinterest addiction, I’ve come across so many ideas to keep kids organized. I decided to try a few of them and see if they can help my family.

DIY Kids Drop Station, School Station

The coat hook was just sitting around, not being used. It will make a great place for the kids to hang backpacks and coats. Then I (hopefully) won’t find them dropped in the middle of my living room (a mom can dream, right?).
The picture frames are DIY dry erase boards. I had some picture frames I had picked up years ago at the dollar store (I think they were supposed to be for Hubby’s certificates from school/work.  Shhh, don’t tell him). I just put some scrap book paper in them. They work better than I could have hoped!
The rug was left over from my daughter’s kindergarten days. I did end up switching it out for a smaller, black, nubby, rubber mat I had sitting in the garage. I figured it was better for catching drips from rain and snow.

Close up of the dry erase boards:

DIY Kids Drop Station, School Station

I do want to add a cork board above for pinning those important papers to.

EDIT: I found a cork board when we were moving. I had forgotten it was my previous attempt to keep school papers orderly, so I gave it to my son. He wasn’t really using it, so he very nicely told me I could take it back. I had originally wanted to do separate cork boards for each kid, but decided this was cheaper (as in, FREE) and easier.  Here’s an updated pic.

DIY School Station, Kid Station, Drop Zone

Please ignore the clutter on the counter/table. That is the next project on my list. Well, right after hanging a shelf in my kitchen, making a paint chip dry erase board, and possibly making jewelry displays.

Total cost for the project?  FREE!!  Can’t beat that! 

If you did need to purchase supplies, I’d bet you can pick up everything you’d need for fairly cheap. Check out the dollar store and garage sales.

The only thing I would change is the hangers on the picture frames. There’s only one on the center of the frame. It does make writing on them a little unstable. I may end up adding a 2nd hanger to make things easier for me. But otherwise I am super pleased with the result!

What do you think? Is this something you would try? Have any suggestions to make school clutter easier to manage?

Maybe I should make something similar for keeping track of craft projects, blog posts, etsy sales, etc.

25th Jul2012

3 No-Sew Halloween Costumes

by HippieKender

I know, I know…. July is a little bit early to be thinking about Halloween costumes.  But, if you like to make your own costumes, or are tired of all the skimpy or cheaply made costumes out there, you need as much time as you can spare to make a Halloween costume so you’re not rushing at the end… right? Please tell me I am not the only one thinking about Halloween already – it would make me feel a little neurotic.

Anyway… I have 3 no sew costumes to share with you today. I’ll even give a brief description on how to make them yourself.  These costumes were made 10+ years ago so my descriptions might be vague. I will try to make them as detailed as possible and if you have any questions, please let me know. I’ll try my hardest to answer them!  All of these were made using hot glue. If you want to get really fancy, I’m sure you could sew them, but I didn’t know how to sew back then.

First up we have the Statue of Liberty and a Sailor.

Statue of Liberty and Sailor Costumes

 

Statue of Liberty

I took a white sheet and a white sweatshirt and dyed them green. NOTE: If you live somewhere where it is warm on Halloween, you do not need the sweatshirt.
The crown is made of craft foam (again, green) glued to a headband. The details are teardrop shapes cut from yellow foam.
The flashlight has red and yellow vellum in the shape of flames taped to it to resemble the torch.

Simple, right?

 

Sailor Costume

Start with a navy blue sweat suit and a white stocking cap.
Cut a large triangle out of white craft felt. Glue red and blue stripes in the “V” part of the triangle. Line the outer edge of the triangle with thin strips of blue felt. Add red felt bow to peak of triangle.
Cut blue and red felt stars to brim.
Glue red and white felt stars to bottom hem of sweatshirt.
Glue 2 thin strips of white felt to each sleeve cuff.

A little more work than the Statue of Liberty, but still easy!

 

And now for the very first costume I ever made… a Lion.

No Sew Lion Costume

 

Lion Costume

Start with a brown sweatsuit. The one I picked zipped down the front.
Cut an oval out of fun fur and glue it on the front. If you have a zipper, cut the oval in half first.
Edge sleeve cuffs, pant cuffs, and edge of hood in trim, but made sure it’s not so long it will cover the eyes. I used glue for this as well.
The tail was just a curtain tie-back glued to the butt of the sweatpants.

Super easy! As this was the first truly crafty thing I has ever made, I burned myself multiple times with the hot glue. Remember: Hot glue is HOT!

 

What do you think? Are you going to try it out? What was your favorite Halloween costume to wear? To make?

17th Jul2012

Making Lip Gloss

by HippieKender

It’s hot in Chicagoland. Heat index above 100F with fairly high humidity.  The Weather Channel keeps sending out advisories to keep children indoors to reduce risk of heat stroke. After driving to the grocery store today (in the Jeep, with the top off), I decided to heed their warnings. But what to do with 2 kids stuck indoors in the Summer?  Well, Sam was more than happy to use his “game time” for the day – I only allow a set amount of time on video games per day – but Melody needed to be entertained.  Thankfully, I had planned ahead for this.

I picked up some petroleum jelly at the store earlier, had some cute containers I had gotten from a swap over on Craftster a year ago, and had some kool-aid in the pantry… so we made lip gloss today!  I recalled seeing instructions all over the internet (so, this is nothing new), but I am going to link you to a site that gives some good instructions here.

I hated up the petroleum jelly in the microwave. Since I was winging it, I did 30 second bursts, stirring each time.  When it seemed liquid-y enough, I called Melody over to help. She stirred her heart out to get all the kool-aid mixed.

 

Looks delicious, right? I used the cherry flavor, but for some reason it turned out a purple-grey color.

Well, I just kept going, because we’re having fun, right? I started filling containers. They are super cute, and now I need to figure out where to get more.

Melody decided she wanted to help fill… until she tried to fill one. Then it was my job to fill and hers to put on the lids and wipe off any “goop” that spilled over the side.

I hope she really likes Cherry flavor because 1 batch filled a ton of containers…

20, to be exact….  Well, maybe I can give them out as goodies to her friends, or sell them online, or … something.

The jelly/lip gloss was still kind of runny, so we popped them in the fridge to cool down and solidify again.

I find this picture kind of disturbing. They look like little pudding cups or something. I blame it on the fact that it’s hard to photograph purple (or, in this case, purpley-grey), especially when taking pics with my phone.

After letting them cool in the fridge, I tried them out. They are just a tiny bit gritty and have a slight taste of cherry. Melody is not sure she likes them. Will I make them again? Probably. There are other flavors to try and I’ve since read some tips about getting the kool-aid to mix completely.

What are your thoughts? Does this sound like something you would try? What kool-aid flavor is your favorite?

17th Mar2012

Nintendo DS Purse

by HippieKender

I was feeling kind of “blah” today and decided I needed to do something creative. I started by messing with my blog. Don’t see any changes? That’s because I couldn’t figure out how do do what I wanted to do. I’m trying to set up a page for my blogroll (kind of like what I had a Blogger). I want the page to display the most recent posts from the blogs I follow, including the title, a snippet of the post and possibly thumbnail picture if there is one in the post. Well, I searched and searched and couldn’t find what I was looking for … so I gave up.  I decided to craft something instead.

My daughter has been playing her DS off and on all day, so I decided she needed a new case to carry her DS and games (and the games she steals from me). I remembered seeing this tutorial over on Craftster on how to make a DS Purse and decided that was exactly what she needed.

She saw me bringing out the fabric and sewing machine and immediately asked if I was making something for her. (Do I make her too many things? Nah! Not possible!) I told her I was and she asked me what it was. For no reason at all, I blurted out  that it was a surprise. Possibly the best decision I have made all day!

DS Purse - Outside

As I was cutting out the pieces, she tried to guess what I was making. At first she said I was making her a dog. She laid out all the squares of fabric to look like a 2-dimensional dog and told me I would need to shorten the legs (the purse straps) because they were too long.

DS Purse - InsideThe DS does fit all the way into the pocket, I pulled it out a little so you could see it.

As I started pressing and sewing the pieces into their proper shapes, she decided some of the pieces looked like pockets. She was still stuck on the dog idea, though. The closure did look a little like a dog ear, and the stylus holder did look like a tail… so I let her keep thinking it was a dog.

It wasn’t until I started pinning all the elements together that she realized it was a purse. She still thought the closure was a pocket and was confused as to why I was sewing it shut, and it was decided the big pocket was for her cell phone for when she turns 18 (her words).  I also loved her helpful advice as I assembled … “Maybe you should get some pliers,” she told me as I wrestled to turn the whole thing right side out. I may have left the opening to turn everything a little small, but that was no reason for her to mock me! “If you sew the whole thing shut, I cant get my hand in there to get my stuff,” she exclaimed as I pinned the lining to the main fabric. Silly girl! You act as if I’ve never done this before! Okay, in her defense, I probably did look silly trying to force everything right-side out again.

DS - finished

But, I did manage to finagle everything into place, just in time for her to check it out and hop straight into bed. Notice the getting-too-small jammies and mis-matched socks.  On second thought, please ignore those!

She seemed happy with the end result. She even reminded me that I missed a game when I was filling it up. Even the hubby said he liked it (and he usually doesn’t appreciate my craftiness as much as I think he should).

DS Purse

Final thoughts: This tutorial was easy to follow. I had almost everything on hand – the only thing I was missing was the craft foam (for protection against bumps and drops), but I did find an old plastic place mat and cut it up.  Everything went together very smoothly and quickly. The only parts that were fiddly were sewing the outer fabric to the lining (had to make sure not to sew over the straps, and the sandwich was thick) and the padding got a little twisted up when I was turning everything right-side out, but a little wiggling and everything went right back into place.
I didn’t make any changes to the pattern (other than the addition of Velcro because I don’t have snaps. Thankfully my guesstimate on where the Velcro would go worked out!) and I would definitely make more of these. Now, to figure out how to make it manly for the Boy. Can’t have him feeling left out!

PS: Sorry for the poor quality pics. I had to take these with my phone. Eventually, I will get an SD reader for my computer… or possibly a better camera!

PPS: I made one for my son, with alterations. Check it out!

12th Jan2012

Harry Potter Wands

by HippieKender

My son is reading the Harry Potter series (partially for enjoyment and partially to fulfill reading requirements for school). He has a book report of sorts due soon where he need to bring in 15 items that pertain to the book he is reading and talk about them. We decided he should have a wand to bring in (and play with when the book report is over). My husband was asking me for ideas on how to make one.  I came across this tutorial and we decided to give it a try. It was easier than we thought it was going to be. Everyone had their part. My husband and I made the base out of standard printer paper and decorated with hot glue. My son and husband painted the wands with acrylic paint. My daughter begged to play with hers RIGHT NOW during the whole process (hey, that’s an important part). They didn’t take long to make and everyone was quite pleased with the end result. My daughter already bent hers, but that’s ok – we can just make another!
Here’s the end result. I apologize in advance for the poor photography. My camera on my phone did NOT want to take good pics of these wands.

Harry Potter Wands

I’ve been learning to crochet. Watch for my next post which will probably include my novice attempts at crochet and possibly even amigurumi!

19th Feb2011

Valentines, part 2

by HippieKender

Since I shared the Valentines I made for my son, I thought I would share the ones I made for my daughter.

I don’t have some crazy story about how I spent all night making valentines. I actually planned ahead for these and my daughter got to help make them. She was so proud.

They are just 4 hearts cut out of scrapbook paper, glued together with a lollipop in the center. Thankfully in preschool they don’t have to write the names of all their classmates, just their own name on them.

I’m pretty sure there’s a tutorial over on Martha Stewert, but these are pretty self explanatory.

Stephanie

11th Feb2011

Handmade Valentines – Pencils

by HippieKender

I decided this year I was going to make my kids’ valentines – you know, the ones they have to bring to school and give to every kid in the class. I picked up most of the supplies a couple days ago and was looking forward to a weekend of crafting with my kids.

Last night, after dinner, I check over my son’s homework and go to sign his planner when I notice, written at the bottom, “Valentine’s Day Party Tomorrow.” Wait, what?! I thought the party was going to be on Monday…. you know… VALENTINE’S DAY? I hadn’t gotten any papers home telling me the date of the party, or a list of all the kids names so the valentines could be filled out correctly. I had just assumed I would get that all on Friday so i could spend the weekend being creative, then have everything ready for Monday… guess that’s what I get for assuming.

So, now i am freaking out. It’s 7:30pm and I still need to get the kids bathed. I do not have time to run to the store for valentines before bedtime! I quickly run to the computer (thank you Google!) and search for valentine’s card ideas. I had bought pencils for my son to give with his valentines, but wasn’t sure how to attach them together. After a bit of searching, I decide to do a heart with the pencil through it like an arrow (classic Valentine’s day, no?). Great, now I have an idea! But what to make the hearts out of? I am out of card stock and I wanted them to be a little sturdier than plain printer paper. I spot some craft foam and get excited (yes!). I quickly realize that I don’t have enough craft foam to make 28 valentines. Now I am frantically pacing around trying to figure out what I am going to do. I find a stack of index cards. They’re sturdy enough, there’s plenty of them, but are they big enough? After a quick sample, I find that they are! Score! After getting son’s approval on the valentine idea, I cut out 28 of them, punch holes, realize those holes are not big enough for the pencil, cut slits to make the holes bigger, write cheesy sayings on them, consider how plain they look, embellish, have son write his name on them all, shove pencils in and rejoice that I am finally done with them!

Now to make 16 valentines for daughter’s class. Her party is actually on Monday… I checked.

Stephanie

02nd Apr2010

Pokeballs

by HippieKender

My kids have been playing old-school Pokemon on my DS. They enjoy it so much they pretend they are pokémon trainers. The other day I was watching them play Pokemon in the yard and realized they don’t actually have pokéballs (or any other suitable sized balls) so they were using sticks to represent their pokéballs. I found this to be very sad.
I decided to make them some “real” pokéballs. I thought about making some out of fabric (and am still considering it) but remembered some Styrofoam balls I had left over from a Christmas ornament project. Unfortunately, one of the 4 balls I found had been partially turned into an ornament already, so it is kind of ugly (both as an ornament and as a pokéball).
I coated the Styrofoam with Mod Podge, painted the top half red, added a black stripe to the middle, and that brought me to this:

The red isn’t quite as dark as it looks here. My camera has decided it only wants to work when it feels like it, so I had to take these with my phone.

Even though I was impatient (as were the kids), I waited for the black to dry before I added the white circles.

Ignore the ugly one in the back, that was the one that was originally supposed to be an ornament. Hubby picked me up some more Styrofoam balls so I can make a 4th nice pokéball (then the kids won’t fight over who has to have the “ugly ball”).

My son with his pokéballs.

I choose YOU!!

These were pretty easy and fast to make. I just popped on Hulu while the kids were in bed. Added the white circle in the morning and the kids have been playing with them all day. I’d say they are a hit!
I’m thinking about making other kinds of pokéballs too.

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