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Posts Tagged ‘children’


Projects and Recipes

I have wanted a laundry room counter with storage and enough space to fold clothing with this many kids.  The hubby and I hit a place in Grand Rapids named, “Restore”. It is a store attached to Habitat for Humanity and they resell items removed or not used in building new homes.  They make a bit of money to be able to build new homes for people and they also have some awesome deals on things. I found a bunch of old kitchen cabinets and told Macgyver I had to have them.  Next I told him he needed to grab a piece of plywood for my counter top and he didn’t understand why I didn’t just let him get me a normal counter top.  Normal? Me? sometimes I just don’t know who this man is.  I had the image in my mind of what I wanted and refused to tell him other than how the build should go.  I wanted something functional but also a keepsake for me.  Everyone is working on wood with stains and making beautiful pieces of artwork.  They blend stain colors to create flowers and such.  However, that sort of art is way out of my reach. So, I got to thinking how much I love my kids and the age ranges they are right this moment are priceless. I wanted a way to preserve them, something useful, doesn’t need dusting and could live on long after I am gone in the house.  Here is what I came up with…

Here is what I started with.

Here is what I started with.

I recruited help from the 5 year  old, Minnie Mouse.

I recruited help from the 5 year old, Minnie Mouse.

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She insisted we use her left over bedroom paint a seafoam color, it is pretty though.

She insisted we use her left over bedroom paint a sea-foam color, it is pretty though.

All 3 cabinets together, painted and a plywood top srewed down. I gathered all the girls.

All 3 cabinets together, painted and a plywood top screwed down. I gathered all the girls.

Pulled out an old dogfoord bag and smeared paint on it. By this time they were looking at me very strange.

Pulled out an old dogfood bag and smeared paint on it. By this time they were looking at me very strange.

Have them one by one, step in the paint, lift them to the counter and walk down it.

Have them one by one, step in the paint, lift them to the counter and walk down it.

Once everyone but the manchild walked the counter top, I had him dip his hands and put his thumbs together, spread out his fingers like a butterfly would look and he stamped one set of his hands in the corner. It does look like a butterfly but you can see his hands nicely.

Once everyone but the manchild walked the counter top, I had him dip his hands and put his thumbs together, spread out his fingers like a butterfly would look and he stamped one set of his hands in the corner. It does look like a butterfly but you can see his hands nicely.

Next I took a darker stain and brushed over the whole thing. Let it set for about 20 minutes and wiped it down with a cloth. The prints look old antiqute-ish.

Next I took a darker stain and brushed over the whole thing. Let it set for about 20 minutes and wiped it down with a cloth. The prints look old antique-ish

After drying I put 2 coats of polyurethane over it.

After drying I put 2 coats of polyurethane over it.

Then I called it a day.  My new, recycled laundry counter with storage and keepsake footprint top.  Love it!!!

Then I called it a day. My new, recycled laundry counter with storage and keepsake footprint top. Love it!!!

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Projects & Recipes

We have been making these Jolly Rancher suckers for years, and if you have little ones they will love making a rainbow.  These are super easy to make and very cool looking.

What you will need:

a bag of Jolly Rancher candies

sucker sticks or coffee stir sticks(that is what we used)

Doing the deed:

Pulled out a cookie sheet, cover it with parchment. Unwrap your Jolly Ranchers and lay 3 in a line.  Mix your colors and flavors some, don’t be shy. Put in and oven on 200 F for 10 minutes or so. They will melt into a stripped pool. Remove from the oven and then lay your stick in each pool.  let them cool completely and enjoy!

A tastey rainbow on a stick.

A tasty rainbow on a stick.

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Projects & Recipes

Next time you make some double chocolate chip muffins, make them mint.  With your normal muffin mix/recipe, add 1/2 teaspoon of whatever flavoring you would like.  Here is my tried and true double chocolate chip muffin recipe, I make this every week for the kids to have before heading off to school.  To mix it up I added Creme de’ Menthe and they are to die for.

What you will need:

1 & 3/4c. flour

1/2c. sugar

1/4c. coca

1T. baking powder

1/2t. salt

1/2c. chocolate chips

2 eggs

1/2c. veggie or canola oil

1c. milk

1t. of vanilla or any other flavoring you would like

My family all loves the raspberry.

Doing the deed:

Dump everything in a bowl and mix it up until it is smooth and creamy.  Add the chocolate chips last so they don’t all sink to the bottom.  Pour into a muffin pan, filling each lined cup only halfway.  Bake at 350 for 13-14 minutes.  Enjoy!

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Projects & Recipes

I am sure most of you know how to make tissue paper flowers, but for those of you who don’t, today is your day.  One of my daughters had her best friend over and they wanted to be crafty…enter tissue paper flowers.  Our eight year old, our nature girl, wanted big flowers on her bedroom wall around her headboard of her bed…enter tissue paper flowers.

You start by pulling out 5 or 6 sheets and stacking them up. If you would like the center of your flower a different color, change out a sheet.

You start by pulling out 5 or 6 sheets and stacking them up. If you would like the center of your flower a different color, change out a sheet.

Next you want to fold the paper legnth wise. Remember making the paper fans? Fold forward, then under, forward and under. I had the girls fold an inch or so before creasing the paper.

Next you want to fold the paper length wise. Remember making the paper fans? Fold forward, then under, forward and under. I had the girls fold an inch or so before creasing the paper.

Ah the glory days, the paper fan. When you are don folding, fold your paper in half to find your middle.

Ah the glory days, the paper fan. When you are don folding, fold your paper in half to find your middle.

Use a twist tie, piece of floral wire and tie around the center.  Once I found my hole punch I used that, but you reall don't need one.

Use a twist tie, piece of floral wire and tie around the center. Once I found my hole punch I used that, but you really don’t need one.

Trim your ends in a curve or point. Whatever you think will look good, scalloped...

Trim your ends in a curve or point. Whatever you think will look good, scalloped…

Next, lay your paper on the counter and from one end, lift up 1 sheet to the middle. Remember the paper is thin so try not to rip it.  Lift it up and hold down the other sheets with your free hand.  Gently pull or tug it to the center.

Next, lay your paper on the counter and from one end, lift up 1 sheet to the middle. Remember the paper is thin so try not to rip it. Lift it up and hold down the other sheets with your free hand. Gently pull or tug it to the center.

Repeat lifting the layers for each one.  Once one side is done, turn and do the same to the other side.

Repeat lifting the layers for each one. Once one side is done, turn and do the same to the other side.

This is what you should have when you are done lifting all of the layers from both sides.  Don't be afraid to mash it a little to get a rounder shape to your flower. You will notice when you look at the bottom of your flower, it is mostly flat, perfect for mounting. Go forth and paper flower the world, well in my case an 8 year olds bedroom wall.

This is what you should have when you are done lifting all of the layers from both sides. Don’t be afraid to mash it a little to get a rounder shape to your flower. You will notice when you look at the bottom of your flower, it is mostly flat, perfect for mounting. Go forth and paper flower the world, well in my case an 8 year olds bedroom wall.

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Projects & Recipes

I have been thinking about making a pocket purse for one of our little girls.  Sometimes while going through their clothing and pulling out stuff they have outgrown, I find some cute things I hate to see go.  For all those little jeans with flowers on the pockets or whatnot, you can now turn them into little purses for kids. Easy peasy!

What you will need:

old jeans with back pockets

seam ripper

ribbon

fabric glue

Doing the deed:

Simply take your seam ripper and remove the 2 back pockets from the old jeans.  Cut a length of ribbon for the strap. Run a bead of fabric glue around the inside seam of 1 pocket. Lay your ribbon ends at the top of the pocket and press into glue.  Put a drop of glue on top of the ribbon you just pressed to 1 pocket and then lay the second pocket on top.  Both pockets should be facing out just like they were on the blue jeans. Press together and let dry. You can decorate a bare pocket however you wish.

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Projects & Recipes

This year before school started I decided I would make a ton of breakfast burritos for the kids to grab out of the freezer.  Last year, we made a ton of breakfast hot pockets and we ran into a few issues.  The main issue was our 12 year old eating them all before anyone else could have one.  This year I cooked everything up so we could make roughly 100 breakfast burritos.  Here is what we did to make mornings simple for us.

The possibilities of what can go in a breakfast burrito are endless. I scrambled up some eggs with peppers, cooked bacon & drained, then diced, hash browns seasoned with red chili's & onions. After cooking, dump everything together into a large pan or bowl, mix up totally. While mixing I added shredded cheese.

The possibilities of what can go in a breakfast burrito are endless. I scrambled up some eggs with peppers, cooked bacon & drained, then diced, hash browns seasoned with red chili’s & onions. After cooking, dump everything together into a large pan or bowl, mix up totally. While mixing I added shredded cheese.

Lay out your tortilla shells and fill, then roll closed. Put on a platter or tray, it goes into the freezer for an hour or so. Transfer into a sealed bag or container to store in the freezer. When needed heat in microwave for 2 minutes and 3 minutes for 2 at a time.

Lay out your tortilla shells and fill, then roll closed. Put on a platter or tray, it goes into the freezer for an hour or so. Transfer into a sealed bag or container to store in the freezer. When needed heat in microwave for 2 minutes and 3 minutes for 2 at a time.

 

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Everyday dose of Reality

For a little while now I have been using one of the old chalkboards in the living room as a “Jobs for Hire” board for the kids.  The board is used for jobs around the house or yard that are things not included in their normal chores.  It lists the job needed to be done, what the pay for that job will be and the person who wants the job, writes their name next to the job.  Living in an old school, let me tell you there is never any shortage of things to do around here.  This gives the kids a chance to earn a little extra money to save for a dance, going shopping or whatever they want to save it for.  As the jobs are completed they come get me and I approve or point out things they missed before a payout is made.  So far, the board has worked well for them and me 🙂  If you are considering a Jobs for Hire board, it can be on paper, poster board, a white board or anything you can come up with to post for the kids to see.  Good luck in your hiring process.

Sorry for the horrible picture, clearly I have had too much coffee.  Is that even possible?

Sorry for the horrible picture, clearly I have had too much coffee. Is that even possible?

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Projects & recipes

Over the last few days the kids & I stenciled our sidewalk that leads up to the front door.  We already know between snow & shoveling there is no paint that will stay and that is ok with us.  We used a cheap stencil and 2 colors of spray paint.  Once it was dry I went back over the designs with glow in the dark paint.  Get creative with your walkway.  We are stuck with concrete that won’t take stain, so the next best thing is an easy design painted on.

First you get a crew together.

First you get a crew together.

Next make sure you clean out the seams.

Next make sure you clean out the seams.

The kids wanted the seams darker, so we painted them black.

The kids wanted the seams darker, so we painted them black.

Lay down your stencil and pounce or use spray paint to get the desired color and effect you want.

Lay down your stencil and pounce or use spray paint to get the desired color and effect you want.

Try to keep smallish people and pets off the designs until they are dry. Good luck with that. To use the glow in the dark paint, you really need to apply it over a light color. Our colors were powder blue and white. Once it was set I outlined the design with a brush and glow paint. At night it looks cool to see the outlines glowing but alas, my camera is to old to capture it for you.

Try to keep smallish people and pets off the designs until they are dry. Good luck with that. To use the glow in the dark paint, you really need to apply it over a light color. Our colors were powder blue and white. Once it was set I outlined the design with a brush and glow paint. At night it looks cool to see the outlines glowing but alas, my camera is too old to capture it for you.

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Projects & Recipes

Here is a really simple red grape facial you can make at home.  It leaves your face clean, fresh, soft & helps reduce those fine lines.

What you need:

4-6 Red grapes

1T. Olive oil

3T. wheat flour

Doing the deed:

If your grapes have seeds remove them.  Pure your grapes & oil together and then mix in the flour.  Apply to face and leave on for 15-20 minutes.  Rinse off and pat face dry then enjoy your new glow.

Today was a girls day at our house and Isabelle declared it Pj day as well. Time for some facials.

Today was a girls day at our house and Isabelle declared it Pj day as well. Time for some facials.

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Projects & recipes

I love colored glass for candles but I wanted to try the kindergarten way.  I know you can buy paints, modge podge and additives for color.  But … what can you do for cheaper?  Clear Elmers glue and food coloring!  Pick your color or make your own, it only takes a couple drops(2 to 4 depending on your color choice) in 2 tablespoon of glue.  The manchild and I mixed up blue and he painted the outside of 3 of my handing glass tea light holders.  We did the outside so it never gets hot and really a tea light doesn’t put off that much heat but we were being safe.  The more layers of the glue you put on the darker color you get and don’t be afraid to mix colors to get swirled marble looking holders.  The girls wanted to toss glitter on them but he stopped them.  “LISTEN.  Not everything in the world has to have glitter on it, back up fairy squad”.  He ended up putting 2 layers on and they look super pretty at night, however my camera is super sucky and wont do a decent night picture so you’re going to have to trust me.

I has les than a half of bottle so we mixed the color in the bottle and then poured in on an old lid to work from.

I had less than a half of bottle so we mixed the color in the bottle and then poured in on an old lid to work from.

Make sure to use a foam brush, unless you want brush strokes as part of your design, cool effect too.

Make sure to use a foam brush, unless you want brush strokes as part of your design, cool effect too.

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