Monday, January 29, 2018

Birthday Treasure Hunt

When our middle child turned 14 she was long passed wanting toys for her birthday. All she really wants these days is money. However, I have a hard time just forking over the cash. Not because I'm opposed to giving it as a present, but I'm opposed to not making her work a little bit for it. Besides, it's just more fun that way. 


Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Big Sister Survival Kit - Pregnancy Announcement Idea

When my husband and I got together he already had two daughters and I had one. After roughly four years we decided that we wanted to give it another go and expand our family. 

Since our girls were much older, we wanted to make sure that we made our announcement more fun, because we didn't want to just tell them "We need to talk" because we felt that it would come off like they're in trouble. 

Pinterest has a million different ideas on how to tell your toddler, kindergartner, overall elementary school aged child about the new baby, but was severely lacking on ways to break the news to your older self sufficient children that there's going to be a new member of the family coming along. 

So, I ended up making my own way instead... 

The Big Sister Survival Kit

Fun Way to Tell Your Older Children You're Pregnant

What We Included

1. Personalized big sister t-shirt. I used PowerPoint to make the design at the time and then printed it on Jolee's Boutique Easy Image Iron-on Transfer Paper for Colored Fabrics. I highly recommend using Cricut Design Space and printable vinyl if you're able. It took me 3 days to create them.

2. A no trespassing sign that we picked up from Home Depot. 

3. A padlock, which we also picked up at Home Depot.

4. Earplugs.

5. Duck Tape. It comes in all different designs now, which we thought would be more fun than traditional duct tape. 

6. A small stuffy from TY. 

7. Baby stuff - bottle, teething ring, cloth diapers, and hand sanitizing wipes - so that they understood what the kit was really about.

I don't think anything other than the duct tape really got much use, but at least they were cute. 

Friday, January 19, 2018

Free Alternative to Photoshop

I'm relatively new to the world of Cricut crafting, but certainly not to design or creative projects. It's always nice to have a .png file option when tinkering around with stuff, but it is essential with the Cricut machine. 

Google used to yeld a ton of results that you could easily just download and use. Since I've gotten the Cricut, I find that it's become a full blown industry to create images with a transparent background that you can use as a cut file. Chances are though, if you can navigate Design Space, then you can navigate a photo editing program as well to create these files yourself. 

After doing a little bit of testing (and with the help from my teenage daughter) I finally settled on Krita. It looks almost identical to Adobe Photoshop but doesn't come with the $20 per month price tag. 

I must warn you that it does not currently have an .svg option in this version. They do plan to include it in the next update release from what I'm reading. Until then I did find an online file converter that will take any .png image you have and turn it into an .svg which you can find by clicking here.

Open that JPEG file that you'd like to edit.

Select the magic wand tool on the left-hand side.
I know it's difficult to see in this screen shot, but you'll notice a small blue highlight over the selected tool. 

Click on the white portion behind the silhouette and hit delete on your keyboard.
Then just "save as" and select PNG from the drop down box.

From there all you should have to do is upload your new file into Design Space. Happy cutting all!

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Tim Burton Halloween Party Theme

Originally posted 10/24/16
I have transferred this post from my old blog to my official site.

I'll admit that this took months to assemble. However, we did have our new daughter arrive back in July so that has a huge factor for everything taking 3 times as long as it should have.

Wonderland Scene

1. Plywood
2. Poster Board
3. Jig Saw
5. Paintbrushes
6. Hot Glue
7. Hand Made Wood Flowers that I found at Target
8. 24" Black Light Fixture (We purchased 2 of these)

While I personally have no talent in the drawing department, my daughter does, so she drew templates on the poster board. My father-in-law cut the pieces out with the jig saw, but honestly I would have been able to do it if I needed to. Then just paint the boards. I made the mistake of getting the little bottles of acrylic paint from Michael's and ended up needing 4 sets of 6 to paint everything. It would have been a lot less expensive if I'd just bought the 1 pint set I included the link for. Finally, I just hot glued the pieces together in order to really create the 3D effect you see there.

Nightmare Before Christmas Candle Holders

Oogie was a gift from my daughters. They know how much I love The Nightmare Before Christmas, but it worked out perfectly for the party theme. 

1. Glass Mason Jar - I just saved the Bertolli jars when I made chicken alfredo.
2. Textured silver paint

Just clean and spray paint the outside of the jars. I used Modge Podge to attach the labels I printed, but regular glue would work just fine too I'm sure.

Photo Corner

1. Halloween Fabric purchased from Hobby Lobby as a background
2. Dollar Store Toys for Dress Up
3. Selfie Stick

This was super easy with all the kids having cell phones these day, but they had a blast with it. 

Drink Station

We ordered the black light responsive party-ware from Amazon.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Candy Table

My mother is a Goodwill junkie, so she had all the apothecary glassware already from her various "treasure hunts." We're lucky enough that Albanese Candy Factory is only about a half hour from our house, so I was able to get classic confectionery candies. 

Upelkuchen Cakes

This was mine... Yes, sad I know.

These are my sisters... I learned the secret to making cake pops is to crumble them and add in a couple spoonfuls of icing before shaping them. 

The Rest Was Just Fun

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Free Watercolor Social Media Icons for Your Blog

While creating this site I looked for easily over an hour for some pre-made social icons that I could use. When that failed, I ended up using publisher to create my own.

Please feel free to right click and save these for your own use.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Cheap & Simple Activity for Your Toddler

All you need are some dollar store straws and a paper towel roll.

Provides entertainment better than toys.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Just an Ordinary Demi-Dad Cut File for Cricut

I learned that you're not able to share uploaded images from Cricut Design Space.
That being said, I have posted the file to my page so that you it can be saved and uploaded.


1. Men's Heavy Cotton T-Shirt (Black)

2.Cricut Iron On Lite, Silver

Just remember to select mirror before cutting the file if you're using it as an iron on like I did.