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Posts Tagged ‘projects’


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

I happen to have 2 cats that would have nothing to do with catnip, until the new homemade toys.  Their minds were changed by the catnip ball and they have been having a blast ever since.

What you will need:

yarn

pair of socks – for a small child

dried catnip

Doing the deed:

Take one sock and stuff the toe with catnip until you have enough to form a ball with the sock, about the size of a golf ball.  Once you have the ball size, twist the sock tight and tie the twist with yarn and cut off the extra yarn and sock above the tie off.  Next take your second sock and  put your catnip ball inside the toe area, making sure to put the tie off of the ball into the new sock toe first.  Twist the new sock tight again above the ball, tie off with a 6 foot piece of yarn.  Trim the extra sock hanging and trim the yarn.  Leave enough yarn to have a string to pull, to play with your cat on the floor.  I have 4 of these on the floor right now and the cats love them!  They will do anything they can to avoid loose catnip but these toys they attack and play with.  Happy catnipping 🙂

Finished catnip ball.

Finished catnip ball.

Mr. Tom guarding the toys from Miss LuLu Bugginsworth. She takes them and hides them from Mr. Tom, so in turn, he tries to guard them from her.

Mr. Tom guarding the toys from Miss LuLu Bugginsworth. She takes them and hides them from Mr. Tom, so in turn, he tries to guard them from her.

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Projects & Recipes

Sometimes you stumble upon a great find, such as a headboard to a bed.  Recently I found one and thought to myself, it would be perfect as a plant stand.  As it turns out, I was right.  Luckily the shelves were already attached, but it wouldn’t take much to add them if needed.

As you can see it holds quite a few plants and would also be easy to move outside for the summer months.

As you can see it holds quite a few plants and would also be easy to move outside for the summer months.

 

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Projects & Recipes

There is an easy way to make a dish scrubber and you can use an old shower puff or some tulle.  I used an old shower puff that was coming un-puffed.  Here is what I did.

Take your old shower puff.

Take your old shower puff.

Find the cord at the center and cut it free.

Find the cord at the center and cut it free.

Stretch out all the tulle.

Stretch out all the tulle.

Take one end and cut a slit in the middle. This will allow you to rip the fabric into two pieces legnthwise. Stop about 3 inches from the other end.

Take one end and cut a slit in the middle. This will allow you to rip the fabric into two pieces lengthwise. Stop about 3 inches from the other end.

Now that you have doubled the overall legnth of your fabric, crochet the entire thing into a chain. I used a size 10 hook and was not going to fight with the fabric to crochet a circle.

Now that you have doubled the overall length of your fabric, crochet the entire thing into a chain. I used a size 10 hook and was not going to fight with the fabric to crochet a circle.

Once you have a long chain, start to coil it into a circle and use some yarn and needle to stitch each coil in place.

Once you have a long chain, start to coil it into a circle and use some yarn and needle to stitch each coil in place.

Here is your new dish scrubber that is great on teflon pans, without the fear of wrecking them.

Here is your new dish scrubber that is great on teflon pans, without the fear of wrecking them.

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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

Ok, there are tons and tons of ways to make sweater socks or sweater slippers, whatever you want to call them.  I happen to live in Northern Minnesota and it has gotten down to 70 F below zero this winter …so I call these sweater socks NEEDED.  Here is the quickest way that I have found and you are only investing about 40 minutes for a pair.  Well, and an old sweater of your choice.  Every spring & fall I hit the cheap-O second-hand shop near me and spend the 5 bucks per garbage bag full of clothing.  I walk in, grab a garbage bag, clear the racks of as many sweaters & bed sheets I can  cram into the bag.  Pay my 5 bucks and I’m a happy woman, other than the fact I get them home and have now added 3 loads of laundry to my day.  But I use the sheets to make summer night gowns for all the girls and if I found “gold” – flannel sheets, they make super soft & warm winter night gowns.  The sweaters are all used until there is almost nothing left but a wayward seam.  Sweater socks, slippers, blankets, mittens, gloves, scarves, carrying bags, you name it the list goes on and on.  Today here is an easy peasy and quick sweater sock.

What you will need:

1 sweater

bout 6 feet of yarn

a plastic sewing needle for yarn

1 piece of paper

 

Doing the deed:

First thing is first, take a piece of paper and trace your foot or a shoe for who yu are making the slipper for.

Take your old sweater and cut off both sleeves. The sleeves will be yur socks.

Take your old sweater and cut off both sleeves. The sleeves will be yur socks.

Next lay the traced peper foot on the sweater and cut out. It is up to you if you want double layer, I certainly do and did make them. Simply cut through both layers of the sweater. Once you have one sole cut, set the pieces to the side and flip the paper foot over to cut the other set.

Next lay the traced peper foot on the sweater and cut out. It is up to you if you want double layer, I certainly do and did make them. Simply cut through both layers of the sweater. Once you have one sole cut, set the pieces to the side and flip the paper foot over to cut the other set.

You now have a left & right sole and double layered if you have choosen.

You now have a left & right sole and double layered if you have choosen.

4th step is to take your sleeves and slide the cuff up your ankle, leaving the rest of the sleeve hanging off your foot.  If you are woking with a shoe for someone, no biggie. Leave a 3 to 4 inch top, where the cuff is, above the shoe.  Trim around your foot, along the side or side of the shoe you are working with, where the sole meets the side of the shoe.

4th step is to take your sleeves and slide the cuff up your ankle, leaving the rest of the sleeve hanging off your foot. If you are woking with a shoe for someone, no biggie. Leave a 3 to 4 inch top, where the cuff is, above the shoe. Trim around your foot, along the side or side of the shoe you are working with, where the sole meets the side of the shoe.

take your tops and match them up to your sweater cut soles and pin.  I suggest start pinning at the toes. Also if you have to be perfect and want to feel clumping sweater around your foot, by all means, turn your pieces inside out for a clean finished look. I was going for the "I don't care, keep my feet warm and I have 5 minutes before the kids go nuclear" way to do these.

take your tops and match them up to your sweater cut soles and pin. I suggest start pinning at the toes. Also if you have to be perfect and want to feel clumping sweater around your foot, by all means, turn your pieces inside out for a clean finished look. I was going for the “I don’t care, keep my feet warm and I have 5 minutes before the kids go nuclear” way to do these.

Thread your yarn needle with whatever yarn you have on hand. Start stitching, you can use a whip stitch or whatever is easiest for you.

Thread your yarn needle with whatever yarn you have on hand. Start stitching, you can use a whip stitch or whatever is easiest for you.

And there you have it!  Sweater socks in 30 to 40 minutes.  If you did turn your pieces inside out, enjoy your clumps, or just trim them down a bit. Carefule not to trim too much or they will unravel when you wash them.

And there you have it! Sweater socks in 30 to 40 minutes. If you did turn your pieces inside out, enjoy your clumps, or just trim them down a bit. Carefule not to trim too much or they will unravel when you wash them.

Soft, warm and double soles feels like fluffy carpet under your feet.

Soft, warm and double soles feels like fluffy carpet under your feet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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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

Around here I tend to recycle or upcycle old worn out things into something new.  After many blue jean projects I just knew I could turn the seam into a coasters for my tables.  In a box hidden, in a craft closet are a bunch of blue jean seams.  The other day I pulled them out and grabbed my handy dandy fabric tac glue.  To turn them into coasters is a very easy process.  Lay your cut away seam out on a flat surface. Run a line of fabric tac glue down the length and roll up.  The end once rolled should be pushed against something to hold it in place while the glue dries.  Once the glue has set, you are ready to use the new heavy duty coaster to save the life of your table.

 

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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

If you are new to ducks or ducklings and you have little ones, here is an easy cheap duckling pond for them.  You have to be careful with ducklings, the bigger ducks don’t mean too but a lot of times the ducklings are drowned by the adults.  The adults get so busy in the water cleaning, mating and flapping around  that before they realize baby is missing, baby has been drowned.  All you have to do is dig a shallow hole, line it with plastic(we used a heavy-duty garbage bag) and line it with rocks and dirt.  The rock hold the plastic and the dirt pack on top will grow grass in the future.  We placed ours 2 feet from the ducks pool so the overflow of water, goes into the duckling pond and cleans it out for them.  The little ones enjoy the pond without being trampled.  It also got us to thinking, maybe next year taking out the pool and duckling pond and make one big one for all the ducks, with a slope for the little ducklings.  Also, this year I tossed a handful of lettuce seeds in the grass of the duck yard.  Anytime the water overflows from the pool & ponds, it waters the lettuce.  The ducks just march down the hill and munch on the fresh growing lettuce.  So much easier than planting a small garden for them and I water the ducks everyday anyway, mind as well grow their veggies in there with them.

The main duck pool for the adult ducks.

The main duck pool for the adult ducks.

The new duckling pond.

The new duckling pond.

 beyond the duckling pond is grass and this year I threw a handful of lettuce seeds out there. This way the overflow from the pond waters the lettuce.

Beyond the duckling pond is grass and this year I threw a handful of lettuce seeds out there. This way the overflow from the pond waters the lettuce.

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