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My house is in full party preparation mode – Everett’s birthday party is Sunday! I can’t believe that he’s turning two…and I can’t believe that I agreed to do yet another birthday party at my house. I’m pretty sure I vowed never to host another one of his birthdays at our house after his last birthday, but lack of time and location possibilities bounced it right into my backyard. As much as I love having everyone over – I really do – it’s hard to get my house party ready. And then there’s the never-ending list of supplies that are needed.
Knowing that I waited until the absolute last minute last year, I actually started shopping for Everett’s party supplies earlier this week at Walmart. Plates, cups, snacks…I was doing so well, until I took a little detour. From there all bets were off and it wasn’t long until I was drawn in by the Yankee Candle® brand fragrances in the auto care aisle. Being a huge fan of Yankee Candle® brand, I just couldn’t resist.Seriously, how cute is this Yankee Candle® brand Car Jar Ultimate?
Not only does it neutralize unpleasant odors, but the level shrinks when it needs to be replaced. I went for a fun fall apple scent since we don’t get many of those down here in South Florida. Hey, if it’s not going to smell like fall outside, it will at least smell like fall in my car! And let me assure you, it smells absolutely amazing.
But, of course, that cute little jar got me thinking about some of the smaller spaces in my house that could use a little fragrance sprucing, specifically, my bathrooms. You see, my 2 guest bathrooms are tiny. To say that there’s not much counter space in them would be an understatement. And in just 2 days there are going to be a lot of people using those bathrooms. So I grabbed an extra Yankee Candle® brand Car Jar Ultimate and set off for the candle aisle where I picked up some more of my favorite American Home™ by Yankee Candle® brand products.
When I got home I placed the the extra Yankee Candle® brand Car Jar Ultimate in a drawer in the lesser used (and slightly smaller) bathroom, but decided to dress up the more frequently used bathroom with some craft supplies I had on hand.Before I knew it, I had a brand new fall countertop display, complete with some fresh fall colored towels, fake leaves, and autumn fragrances! As a busy working mom, I’m normally overwhelmed by just the thought of decorating (and all to often it falls by the wayside), but this bathroom countertop makeover was so easy to do!
But the DIY Falling Leaves Votives very clearly steal the show… They’re way easier than they look! Here’s how you can make them.
You will need:
American Home™ by Yankee Candle® brand tumblers
Fake leaves in fall hues
Step 1 – Using the foam brush, apply a thick layer of Mod Podge to the outside of your tumbler.
Step 2 – Gently press your leaves onto the outside of the tumbler. They will not stick at first – don’t panic. Dab a generous amount of Mod Podge on top of each of the leaves, using a sponging type technique. The Mod Podge will be thick, but don’t worry, it will dry clear. Just make sure not to go above the rim of the tumbler.
Step 3 – Allow to try overnight and then place prominently in the area you wish to freshen up!
How do you use fragrance to freshen up the small spaces in your home? Have you ever tried Yankee Candle® brand products from Walmart?
Suddenly, it all feels very official – the school supplies are purchased, the teacher meet and greet has taken place, and the first day outfit has been selected… School starts on Monday! We’re are as ready as we can be. Actually the only thing that we were missing for the big day was a special, creative school lunch. Because the first day of school deserves a little something special. So, with a little time to kill after the meet and greet yesterday, I decided to do a trial run of my back to school lunch. I think this might be the cutest creative school lunch yet!
I typically like my creative lunches to be easy to make and take no longer than 20 minutes to assemble, but this one probably took a bit longer because of the school bus sandwich. The ingredients are pretty simple and I had all of them on hand, but assembling it to make sure that it came out just right, did take some time. I think the second time around will definitely go faster.To make this sandwich, start by cutting the crusts off 2 slices of wheat bread and place some turkey in the middle. Then cut a rounded edge on to one slice of a piece of cheddar cheese (I highly recommend using a pizza cutter for this step); the side of the cheese with the rounded edge will be the top of your school bus. Cut your rectangular windshield in the cheddar cheese using a knife or pizza cutter and place it on top of the slices of wheat bread with the rounded edge on the top. Cut a semicircle out of a second slice of cheddar cheese (I used the rim of a cup to do this) and place it on top of the first piece of cheddar cheese, just under the “open” windshield. From there, slice a cherry tomato in half and place them towards the top of your bus as the flashing lights, and add string cheese slices to create lights and the grill of the bus, before topping them off with raisin eyes and a green pepper slice smile. Give your bus some wheels by placing some mini OREOs under the bus.
Once you’ve completed the school bus sandwich, this lunch quickly falls into place. The apple cookie cutter
was actually something I had left over from last year’s back to school lunch, and went perfectly with the watermelon sale at my grocery store this week. I added a pretzel “stem” and sliced green grape “leaf” for a little extra color.
Finally, I wrapped up this creative school lunch with a sweet treat blackboard rice crispy treat, decorated with black cookie frosting, pretzel sticks, and a sugar apple. I really wanted to put some white frosting letters or numbers on the blackboard, but my freehand isn’t so great, so I skipped it this time, but I highly encourage you to do it if you’re good with frosting. While I think she’s going to love this entire lunch, I’m pretty sure this is going to be her favorite part!
If you’re looking for a way to add a little fun to your child’s lunch box this school year, be sure to check out all my creative lunches! And good luck to all those going back to school this week!
On Sunday, Everett slept in until 9:30. Nine thirty! Don’t get me wrong, the kid’s always been a decent sleeper, but that’s unheard of even by his standards. I had to fight the urge to go in and make sure he was still breathing. As I laid and tried to relax while waiting for him to wake up (because as a mom I’m not longer programmed to sleep quite that long) I realized how quiet the house was…almost too quiet. And then I realized it – there were no slamming doors. With the girls gone at their grandparent’s house, there was no one to run in and out of my room asking when breakfast would be served or if I could turn on the tv or if I could get their clothes for the day, each time slamming the door behind them. And just moments before each slam I find myself helplessly begging, “Don’t slam that door!” I feel like it’s my weekend anthem.
So when Poise approached me to discuss yet another mom problem – light bladder leakage – and asked me to find a creative way to recycle my period pad, I just knew that there had to be a solution to two mom problems. Light bladder leakage is a problem that affects 1 in 3 women. Often caused by physical changes due to pregnancy and childbirth, light bladder leakage is most definitely a mom problem. Triggered by laughing, coughing, sneezing, or exercise, light bladder leakage can be an embarrassing problem for so many moms, especially during the summer months when shorts, skirts, and bikinis are part of the dress code. And because so many women don’t know any better, their using bulky period pads to combat their light bladder leakage instead of Poise. The new Poise Thin Shaped Pads are specifically designed to protect against light bladder leakage and give you the security you need this summer. Since Poise clearly has light bladder leakage covered, it was time to do something else with my period pad.
Which lead me to the question – “What if my kids couldn’t slam the door and wake up the baby?”. Suddenly I thought back to a fancy baby boutique I went to before Greenleigh was born and remembered seeing a fabric door bumper. At the time I didn’t know what you could possibly need one for, but now…well…now I understand. Since my sewing machine is currently out of commission, I decided to make this a quick and easy no sew project. No doubt I’ll have one on every door by the time the girls return!
You will need:
Period pads (any brand)
Step 1 – Cut two pieces of fabric to 5 inches wide and 4 inches long. I did this by measuring on one piece and then layering the pieces and cutting them at once. Then take one of your pieces of fabric and lay it with the pattered side up.
Step 2 – Cut a piece of your elastic to 4 inches long. Make a loop with your elastic and then hot glue it in the middle of one end of your fabric, approximately one quarter of an inch from the end. You should be gluing this to the patterned side of your fabric, not the back of the fabric.
Step 3 – Once the hot glue is dry, glue three sides of the fabric. Place the second piece of fabric on top, patterned side down. Press down along the edges. You want the patterned sides to be in the middle and the back of the fabric facing out. Allow a few minutes to dry.
Step 4 – Using the elastic, pull the fabric right side out. Use your fingers to push out the corners.
Step 5 – Cut the period pads down to size and then remove the adhesive strip from the back. Place your pieces of period pad into the fabric, laying them flat on top of one another. I ended up using 2 full pads in my door bumper, but each pad was cut in half.
Step 6 – Tuck in the edges and hot glue the elastic on first, before gluing the door bumper shut.
Then place it on your door and enjoy the quiet in your house. And if you’re interested in trying Poise pads and lines for free (yes, FREE!) be sure to click here for your free sample!
Every year, I try to make a homemade ornament for our tree. Sometimes it’s an ornament I make with the kids help
, and other times, it just something that I do myself. It may not be fancy, but it keeps our tree personal because something that I worked on. And yet, this year, I feel like I’ve had less time between Thanksgiving and Christmas than ever before. How is it that when you’re a kid those 3-4 weeks go by so slowly, but when you’re an adult it feels like the same 3-4 week period goes by at the speed of light? Simply put, I didn’t have much time to put together an ornament this year, but I didn’t want to abandon the idea altogether. So as a compromise, I came up with this DIY Christmas Wreath Ornament. It requires very few supplies and they can be put together in just a few minutes. Plus, if you want to get fancy, you can use the circle in the middle of the wreath as a picture frame and insert a photo!
Want to know how to make them? I promise…It’s really easy! And if you have older kids who are going to be out of school in the coming weeks (and can be trusted with a glue gun), they’d probably enjoy making these too!
You will need:
White ribbon (although you could also use red or green, if you preferred)
Step 1 –
Make a circle with your green beads. The best way to do this is to lay them out on the table in front of you in the exact size that you’d like your ornament to be.
Step 2 – Using your hot glue gun, put a small dot of glue between two of your beads and press them together firmly until the glue dries and they stay together. Continue doing this with the next bead in your circle, and then the next, and the next until your circle is completely glued together.
Step 3 – Cut your ribbon to approximately 2 feet (depending on how big you’ve decided to make your wreath, the 2 foot estimate is based off a smaller wreath, so keep that in mind).
Step 4 –
Weave the ribbon in and out of the beads leaving a little loose at the end.
Step 5 –
When you reach the loose end of the ribbon at the top of the ornament (after weaving the ribbon through the entire wreath), make a small knot and a loop.
Step 6 –
Hot glue a red pompom to the front of the wreath and hang it on your tree!
Then step back and enjoy all of your not-so-hard work!
I won’t lie, it seems a little ridiculous that I’m posting a “Frozen” craft in the dead of summer. On any given day, it feels like it’s a million degrees outside, and the only frozen thing that I’m concerned about are the ice cubes in my lemonade. But despite the intense temperatures, my daughters’ love for Anna, Elsa, Olaf, and all thing Frozen is at an all time high.
I actually started this wreath in April, just before Greenleigh’s birthday party. I just made Hazeline’s Sofia the First wreath and felt confident that I could make another one fairly quickly. But then life got in the way – the crunch of throwing 2 birthday parties in 3 weeks, illness, family visiting – it all became too much and this project got put to the side.
I started working on it again in June and got it almost completely finished except for a few of the finishing touches. But then summer fun got in the way – who wants to stay inside when there’s pool time to catch up on? So it sat on my dining room table just a little longer…until Greenleigh saw it there over the weekend and asked, “Mommy, when are you going to finish my Frozen wreath?”. Ugh. Called out by my 5 year old.
So I fired up the glue gun and decided it was time. This wreath, which is intended as a decoration for her bedroom door, had to be finished. Realistically, it could have been done in a few hours (with the wrapping the wreath form in yarn being the most time consuming part), but had been delayed months. And sure enough, in a matter of 45 minutes, the finishing touches were done. My Frozen wreath was finally done! I’m not wild about how it photographed, but I love, love, love how it turned out. So I couldn’t help but share it here.
Since this isn’t that different from Hazeline’s Sofia the First Wreath, I’m not going to repost the instructions here, but make sure to check out that post for how to make your own. It’s a cheap and easy way to decorate and can be made in any character that you like! Plus, they make really cute decorations for kids’ bedrooms!