Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas!

The turkey has been eaten and all the presents have been opened.  It's been a great Christmas.  Hope you all enjoyed this special time with your families, and all the best for 2016!

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Monday, December 21, 2015

DIY: How to Wrap a Cookie Tin

I love baking cookies.  I think I like baking more than I like eating the cookies.  Well, almost.  Now that we are deep into the festive season, I'm toting along cookies to every party we attend.  It feels weird bringing a cookie tin in a gift bag so I like to "wrap" it.

First we start off with cookies!  I like to line my tins with a coffee filter to keep things tidy.

I also like to let folks know what's in the tin.

Depending on who is carrying the tin into the party, I also use some clear tape to seal the tin.

Next up is some gold ribbon.

I tie the ribbon on.  You can also put a little bit of tape on the ribbon underneath the tin for extra security.

I like to add a tag so they know it's from me.

Done!  It's ready to bring to the next party.

What are you baking?  I'd love to try out some new recipes!

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Saturday, December 19, 2015

Advent Calendar Revisited

Two years ago, I had made a pom pom advent calendar.  Once Christmas was over, I stored it away in the basement and we couldn't find it last year.  Oops.  This year, #1 found the pom poms and asked if we could do advent again because he enjoyed it so much last time. 

I didn't have time to print out new envelopes.  I just printed out the numbers on a sheet of paper.

Then I wrote the advent activity on the back of the paper.

Then attached them to the garland.

The kids love it and I have to admit, it's fun thinking of ideas for them to do after school.  So far we have gone to the Lego Store, we've done scavenger hunts, art projects, and eaten some chocolate.   My lucky children are going to see the new Star Wars movie with my mom today.

It's been difficult to top all the fun from November.  

We visited Santa's House at Scarborough Town Centre.  IMO, the best Santa house in the GTA.

Then skated at the Air Canada Centre.  Go Leafs!

Got to meet the Octonauts!!!

Went to the Christmas Market for carols and a sleep over at my sister's place.  #2 really wants nesting dolls to hide his stuff.

I'm definitely keeping the little sheets of paper for ideas for next year!  

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Thursday, December 17, 2015

Easy Jingle Bells

Our school was participating in a Christmas parade and the kids wanted to sound "jingly" while walking the route.  I thought about making a small jingle bell wreaths for them to hold, but sometimes life gets busy and there's no time.  Especially when the kids ask for something last minute.

I had already been at the store and bought some bell ornaments (for what?  I don't know... something made me buy these) and I already had the jump rings at home. 

It really doesn't get any easier than this:  hook the jump ring through the bell and attach it to a jacket zipper.  Done!!!

If you have extra time and patience, you could also hook in some smaller bells and make what the kids call, a "Mickey Mouse".

Sometimes crafting doesn't have to been overtly complicated.  I love the fact that these went onto the zippers (all 4 of them) and I didn't have to hold anything.

In the end, the kids got to sit on the float so there wasn't much jingling going on.  Afterwards, they met up with Santa who was very kind, and spent quite a bit of time chatting with his two little elves.

As I write this post, I can't help but hum...  Jingle bells, jingle bells...

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Tuesday, December 15, 2015

DIY Ornament Wreath

I made this wreath in under an hour with the help of my two little monkeys. I have a beautiful wreath that my mom made years ago, but I like to keep that one inside the house vs outside.  This year, we haven't had any snow yet but I really do like the look of red on white for Christmas.

I had seen this wreath at Ikea  but didn't like the colours. 

Photo Credit:  Ikea Canada
So, I went to the Dollarama and armed myself with a bunch of red Christmas ornaments.  I chose some small ones, some medium ones, and some patterned ones for texture.  I then took an old dry cleaning hanger (white), opened it up, bent it into a circular form, and had the kids insert the ornaments from both ends.  When the ring was full, we twisted the wire back up.  I also added some gold ribbon to the top to cover some of the hanger as I ran out of ornaments.

Here it is from street view:

So easy and a nice addition to our front door! 

Happy decorating!
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Tuesday, November 10, 2015

DIY: Remembrance Day Poppy Conversion Updated

It's been 3 years since I posted a DIY Remembrance Day Poppy Conversion.  Now I have 2 kiddos going to school with poppies and hoping they don't poke themselves OR someone else.  We like to support the Royal Canadian Legion by purchasing a poppy from one of the cadets at the mall.

I've made a small modification to my previous tutorial to allow the kids more independence.  The safety pin was hard for them to put on.    The solution?  Flat-backed pins. 

The method to attach is the same as before.  Just remove the long pin, glue the black centre back onto the poppy and sew on the pin. 

It's so fast to do and will keep the poppy on a shirt for more than a day.

Honouring Veterans is #OurDuty - click here for more information on the Royal Canadian Legion

Lest we forget,
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Friday, October 30, 2015

DIY: Non-Food Treats and Outdoor Decor

In 2015, it is pretty much a given that kids are not allowed to share treats with their friends at school. It's just the way it is. It's funny how when I was a kid, I would have been so happy to get a pencil or new eraser.  However, my kids would love to share and receive a treat with their pals.  This year, I went to my local Halloween store and picked up some spider rings and "eye" balls and packed it up (similar to last year's Halloween non-food treat).

I like to keep it simple and I try to pick items that can fit into a tiny bag.  Then I work on the graphics.  This year I found a skeleton Mickey and since Teo is a skeleton for Halloween, it worked.

Once that's done, it's time to put it together.

Then this is usually when I think of engaging small hands to help out.


So simple but hopefully helps to capture the fun and spirit of Halloween.

Outside our home, we have done some decorating as well. We are big fans of Halloween "Hands".


We brought back the scary face (previously known as the girl from the ring).

Last but not least, we "made" a little boy out of old clothes and boots belonging to Teo. 

Wishing you all a safe and happy Halloween!
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