Monday, December 24, 2012

Child's Artwork Christmas Dish Towel

Merry Christmas!! I have a tradition each year of making a present for each of my boys. In the past it has been lego tables, fire stations, quilts, etc. I wanted to pass on that love of gifting to my children. This year I helped my oldest make a dish towel for his grandma. It was a great way to transform a child's artwork into a gift. He brought home homework, that was to draw a Christmas tradition. His drawing consisted of a Christmas tree decorated in balls with a little boy beside it. It was the perfect memory to capture.
Light colored fabric
Dish Towel
Fabric Markers
Heat and Bond
To begin with, I took his drawing. The boy just might look a little creepy, but my son is not exactly an artist. This is his best drawing to date!
I used a small sheet of transfer paper layered between the picture and the light colored fabric. The order...light colored fabric on the bottom, transfer paper ink side down, and then the drawing on the very top.

I traced his artwork onto the fabric and then colored it in with the fabric markers.

I tried to color a bit messy so it would look like his original drawing.

Next, I found some cute festive dish towels on sale. Yipee! I cut my son's artwork on fabric down to a little rectangle. I then used heat and bond on the back and ironed it to my dish towel.
After a simple zig zag stitch around the perimeter it was done!

I loved it so much I made a second one for myself! This turned out to be a very fast way to make a personalized gift my mom will always treasure. I hope you all are having a wonderful holiday!!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Children's Christmas Party

We had the best little Christmas party play date two weeks ago. My four year old helped me plan it, because he uses any excuse to have a party these days. Of course, when I started thinking about it, I realized he won't get to be home with me much next year once he starts kindergarten. It is amazing how fast time flies. As usual, we planned games, crafts, drinks and more.

These sweet little reindeer juice boxes were made from brown paper, googly eyes, and red pom poms adhered with hot glue.

My son and his friends were so excited about their Reindeer juice. We also bought a box of 8 bells at the dollar store and tied red ribbon on them so the kids could jingle as they walked around with their necklaces. It cost us $1.50 to make 8 necklaces.

One of our games was a snowman snowball. I started by wadding some white tissue paper up in a ball. Then I began wrapping it in clear packing tape. Every few layers I added in some bendable snowmen until it became a rather large snowball.

We turned on some Christmas music and passed the snowball around. The kids began pulling off the tape and trying to reach the bendable snowmen. If the music stopped, they had to pass it to the next child in the circle. This would also work with a dice, and the kids could take turns rolling the dice until they rolled a specific number like 5.

Next, we covered some pieces of cardboard with foil. We made construction paper cookies covered in real sprinkles.
We also mixed up some Magical Reindeer Food. I am sure most of you have heard of it before.  I combined oatmeal, sprinkles for baking, and sugar in a small dish. The kids scooped it out, and filled their little bags. (The scooping was their favorite part). I found this free cute poem printable here.
I didn't take enough pictures of everything because the party went by so quickly. I also had the kids draw a simple stable on a piece of construction paper. Then I gave the kids a set of stickers with baby Jesus, Mary, Joseph, etc. I read the Nativity story and had them put a sticker around their stable that coordinated with each page. They were so attentive and quiet, and really enjoyed doing an activity with the Christmas Story.
How do you share the Christmas Story and spirit with your kiddos?

Monday, December 17, 2012

My Favorite Christmas Projects from Last Year

I had the best day today with some of my girlfriends. We went to see a burlesque version of the nutcracker in Addison, Texas. I know you might think of burlesque, and think Vegas style risque burlesque, but this was just cute little dancers in fish net stockings and mini shorts and tops. It was almost like a funny episode of Saturday Night Live. I laughed, and laughed...and laughed. It was hysterical. I would highly reccomend it to anyone. Check out the website here.

Hand Embroidered Christmas Cards

Here are a few pictures from the cast and crew of the nutcracker.


Thursday, December 13, 2012

Kids Jeans too Short? Lengthen them.

I am sure a lot of you hit the winter, tried on your kids jeans, and wondered how they could have possibly grown soooo many inches in one year! I know my boys gained at least 2 inches each. It amazes me how it does not hurt to grow that fast. I needed a fast way to repurpose some jeans that were too short. My friend also mentioned that none of her daughter's jeans fit anymore either, so I saw a great opportunity for a challenge.  This is what I whipped up...

I should first start and clarify I like to sew...but I rarely attempt anything related to clothing. These were so simple to make though. I wish I had a little girl to make some more fun jeans for. Boys couldn't pull these ruffly jeans off. LOL!
I started by cutting the hem off the bottom of both jean legs with a few additional inces shaved off. (It depends on how short they already are on your child)

Next, I cut an 8" width strip by about 19" I needed to fold it in half to make a 4" bottom. I measured the bottom width of the jeans x 2 and added about 5-6 inches for gathering. For example, if the bottom width of your jeans is 7"...7x2=14+5=19"

Next I sewed a wide stitch about 1/2" down from where the open tops matched up. (Remember not to backstitch at all). Then I pulled my strings to create the "perfect" gather...or until they fit the bottom of my jeans. I sewed the two 4" ends together and pinned my ruffled pant leg in place. Please note you will pin at the bottom edge of the jeans with the closed portion facing up so it can flip down later.
This sure is super hard to explain when I don't have sewing terminology 101. I hope the pictures help!!


Stitch your ruffled pant leg in place.
We also happened to have a small hole in the knee, so I ironed on a homemade patch to match, and used a simple blanket stitch around the edges.

They turned out to be a great way to repurpose once too short jeans.
Has anyone seen any cute ideas for boys??

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Chicken Stuffed Baked Avocados

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Avocados from Mexico for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

Oooh yummy! I have never baked avocados before, and I am so excited about this recipe. I can honestly say I have thought about baking avocados until I was offered this post about Avocados from Mexico's Better Baking Sweepstakes. I have always LOVED avocados, and I have used them as toppings on tacos, or to make guacamole, but I have never gotten really creative and baked them until now.

Did you know you can even replace butter or oil in a recipe with equal parts of pureed avocado?

Your baked goods will come out richer, healthier, and more moist. When I thought about baking I was imaging baking the whole avocado. I will definitely have to try my cookies and cakes with avocados instead of butter or oil next.

I searched the internet to find avocado baking recipes, and surprisingly they were really hard to find. I did find a clever recipe for seafood stuffed avocados that gave me this idea. It reminds me of a taco without the shell. These would be delicious served with tortilla chips as well. I wish I had thought of that before I devoured these little babies with a spoon!



Avocados from Mexico

Shredded chicken

Cream Cheese softened

Diced Tomatoes

Shredded Cheese

Taco Seasoning


1. Cut your avocados in half. Preheat oven to 350.



2. In separate bowl, combine cream cheese, shredded chicken, small amount of taco seasoning, diced tomatoes and shredded cheese.


3. Stuff the yummy goodness inside of your avocado.

4. Bake at 350 for approximately 8 minutes.


5. Enjoy and go enter the Avocados from Mexico's Better Baking Sweepstakes. There are over 500 Prizes!


And don't forget to try avocados in your next baking recipe. I love learning easy substitutes for healthy eating.


Visit Sponsor's Site

Monday, December 10, 2012

Repurpose Placemat to Clutch Purse

How are your holidays going? All of our decorations are up and I am over 75% done wrapping gifts. This is officially the most ahead I have ever been. Normally I am still wrapping the night before Christmas. I just thought I would share this quick tip. I was headed to a gift exchange, and I was desperate for some gift wrap. We don't live close to many stores so I dug through my supplies. I found this placemat that no longer had its mates. I folded it up in the shape of a clutch purse. I sewed the two sides leaving the flap open. I quickly attached a little snap...and Voila... a cute little bag or clutch purse for wrapping. I wrapped my present inside and off we went.

The funniest part, was everyone loved it so much, they asked where I bought it. Cracking up I told them my desperate gift wrapping story. Who knew it would be such a hit!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

31 Creative, Unique and Fun Elf on the Shelf Ideas

The Christmas tree has been up for a week now...and our little elf on the shelf Jingle has been on the prowl. If you have never seen this creepy cute little elf, and the story that accompanies him, you are missing out! I am constantly creating new adventures for our little elf. It takes tons of ideas to keep your elf on the shelf busy. I hope to help you find some ideas you have not seen before. Here are some of Jingle's latest mischiefs.
Jingle made his own stick horse to fit in at the corral

Making a cheerio necklace out of the supplies we accidentally left out

Just resting in his hammock

Look at my son's look of surprise last year when he realized the lego men had captured Jingle.

This is the original story. It is now plastered in every book store window...but it really lives up to its publicity hype. The elf flies back to Santa every night to report on how your child is doing. Oh...but make sure not to touch him or he will lose his magic!

I ran out of clever and creative elf on the shelf ideas last year, so I am started my research early thanks to Pinterest. I tried very hard to give credit where deserved, but so many pictures only linked back to Thanks everyone for these amazing and fun ideas!

Snow angel
Snow Angel

Elf on the Shelf ideas


Fishing for goldfish

Elf on the Shelf ideas
Message in the snow

Elf on the Shelf Ideas
Soft place to snooze

elf on the shelf ideas
Staying warm with the cold

Pinned Image
Relaxing in the tub

Our elf with an umbrella under the water/ice dispenser on our fridge.
Trying to keep out of the rain
(water dispenser)

Elf Ideas

Parachuting daredevil

Settling for a long winter's nap

Elf mischief for Christmas
Photo by Jen Mcken

Hot air balloon adventure

Start your engines!

Pinned Image
Bubble bath luxury

Elf Kisses by Kims Kandy Kreations with Printable

The Show is On by Clearly Candace

Elf Mummy by Clearly Candace

Christmas Countdown by Family Life is Great

Captured Elf by Thats Country Living

North Pole or Bust

Pinned Image

Harry Potter Elf

Sick Elf

Elf with Zhu-Zhu Pet Reindeer
When short on reindeer…why not?

Elf with Zhu Zhu Pet Reindeer

The captured bandit by

Ice Fishing by
Do you have any more fun ideas to share with me? I am always up for some new suggestions! Especially when they have already been kid-tested on your own little ones. Here is where Jingle will be in the morning...
Jingle pretending to be a piggy bank robber

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