Winter hanging basket

I found a picture online of a great winter greens hanging basket, so I enlisted the help of my Aunt (who is a florist) for some help on this.  We gathered greens and berries from the grounds of a historic home in Louisville.  I think it’s a great way for you to teach kids about nature as well as get their help to put these great baskets together.

Advertisements

Chalkboard Wall (guest post Corey & Cambrey Little)

photo 1IMG_4179

Chalkboard Wall

When building our new house, my husband and I knew we wanted a chalkboard wall that we could draw on, have our guests sign their names, create cool holiday messages, make grocery lists, etc. We can thank Pinterest for the inspiration! Lucky for me, my mom’s a teacher and my husband is a designer. So we had this one in the bag. My mom is an old school at that. It is 2012 and she still uses chalkboards in her classroom. She swears they are better than any white or smart board on the market. So thanks to her advice, and my talented husband who is a graphic designer/web designer/architect/creative extraordinaire (shameless plug – www.coreylittle.com), we were able to come up with the perfect Christmas chalkboard design.
IMG_4176
Here are the steps we took to achieve it:
1. After we chose the wall we wanted to paint (that took some serious contemplation), we set out to buy some chalkboard paint. We found a can at Home Depot for about ten bucks.
2. Paint the chalkboard wall (a no-brainer, right?). Quick tip – we didn’t use a primer. Just used 2 coats of chalkboard paint. The wall was light grey before.
3. Buy some good chalk. Any kind will do for the “seasoning” (see step 4) we got some really good colored chalk from Michael’s. The brand is Artist’s Loft (blue box) and it had 24 pieces in it.photo 3
4. After the paint has dried, you’ll need to “season” or prep the wall (think like you’re prepping your brand new cast iron pan). Basically all you need to do is cover the entire wall in chalk and then wipe it down w ith a damp cloth. This makes it easier to erase any future design and keep it erased for good. Remember in trigonometry class when you could faintly see the unit circle on the chalk board even though it had been erased weeks before? Anyone? Maybe that was just me. Moving on.
5. I mentioned earlier my husband is a graphic designer. He whipped up a really cool Christmas design in photoshop then had it printed on a transparency at Fedex Office. His dad happened to have an old light projector lying around and gave it to us. We used that to project the design onto the wall and trac ed it out with chalk. Voila! A fancy looking (but super easy) Christmas message on our new chalkboard wall.

photo 2

I can’t wait to see what we come up with next!

Stop Dyeing Eggs this Easter!

Let one of my favorite Momma’s teach you and your kids a fun craft this Easter! 

Guest post by  Brooke Widmer.

When my friend Natalie invited me to do a guest post on her blog, my first reaction was to look behind me to see who she was really talking to.  Intimidated as I was, I have to admit that this activity is too much fun not to share.  And what a great activity for Easter or Spring Break!  I first did this project with my oldest daughter about 4 years ago when she was 4, and now that my youngest is 4 I decided to go really big and do it with her whole Pre-K class.  Those kids  are precious, and I think they had as much fun putting these together as I did.  It’s hilarious to have conversations with little ones about shells and seeds…you wouldn’t believe the things they think they can grow!

Here’s what you will need to make your family of Egg Heads
Egg Shells, rinsed and allowed to air dry. Maybe you want to make an omelet or quiche for breakfast? Or maybe you are better at peeling boiled eggs than I am.  Either way, the more of the shell you can keep whole, the better.  It will have to hold water to work.

Cotton Balls

Alfalfa seeds (seeds can be found in several grocery stores, I found mine at Whole Foods)

Google eyes or a marker to give your Egg heads some personality

Something as a base for your egg to rest in/on.  You can use the egg carton itself, mini cupcake liners or these cute Easter chicks that I found at a dollar store in packs of 3.  Whatever you have on hand to keep them upright.
Here is your step by step Tutorial

Once you have assembled your clutch of egg shells you will glue (or draw) eyes on their faces.

Now stand them up in your base of choice.  I found sticky play foam to be a great medium for getting them to stand up and keep them in place.

Next soak your cotton balls in water and squeeze slightly so that you can carefully stuff the wet cotton inside the shells. Generously sprinkle the seeds over the wet cotton and set your Egg Head Family in a sunny window to watch them sprout full heads of hair!

Make sure to check the cotton daily and spritz with water to keep moist.  Of course be sure to name your little guys.  They are great conversationalists.

Enjoy!  Oh, and be sure to try the sprouts on a salad or sandwich.  The kiddos even tried these because it was something they grew!

These 2 were our first, and are still my favorite… Besther & Esther!

Chair of memories

Modge Podge your favorite memories to a old chair!

This chair has been following me around for 10 years!  I honestly never thought that when I saved this chair from our family yard sale that it would still be with me.

(Just a few years after Amy and I graduated!)

My college roommate, Amy, probably thought I was crazy when I brought a old chair to college.  Then one day we had the genius idea to spruce up this old chair and get ride of some of the clutter in our desk drawers.   So with our compilation of high school and college CDs we came up with great quotes, pictures & song lyrics we loved from all our favorite CD covers.  Now when I look back at this chair I think back on all the time we spent making it together & all the songs, artist and movies that made up my high school and college experience.

Now I know that most people don’t actually buy CDs any more, we just download them.  But just in case you have a old chair hanging around you may want to try it and spend some quality time with the kids, your girl friends or even your husband!

Here are some other ideas to use on your chair:

-Old movie tickets, I know I keep all of mine, do you?

-Notes or cards from friends and family

-A old book that is falling apart or that you are missing parts of

-Your Journal, I’m not brave enough to let others read mine but you may be

-Kids art work

-Print out your favorite quotes

The tutorial for this project is very simple:

Buy Modge Podge, read directions and get to work!