Friday, July 21, 2017

"Cotton" 2nd Anniversary Gift

  
For my son and daughter-in-law's 2nd wedding anniversary I created this Cotton-themed gift.  Did you know there are specific 'gifts' for each anniversary? There are actually different lists but I went with the most basic/original list and I found a great site that gives the history of the "list" itself.  Anniversary-ideas-step-by-step.com tells how this list came about and gives the traditional gift and the meaning behind each gift which I love (and added to my gift box).
I started with Prosecco and created a 'recipe' card telling how to make a Cotton Candy Prosecco Cocktail.  Get it . . . "Cotton" candy . . .  I tied the recipe to the bottle.
I wanted to find a "Cotton" scented candle but of course when I wanted one, I couldn't find one.  But I thought "Linen" was close enough to cotton!
I wrapped the candle in a vintage "cotton" tea table cloth that I had in my vintage linen stash.
I thought we better TRY this to see how it tasted haha! So hubby and I broke open a bottle and made our own Cotton Candy Prosecco Cocktails.  It WAS yummy and fun to watch the cotton candy melt.  It definitely added a sweetness to the drink which was very tasty.  
I was afraid to mail my own cotton candy because I thought it might 'melt' or be gross by the time it arrived to them in the mail.  So on Etsy, I found this WONDERFUL seller, County Fair Foods who sells the cotton candy in your choice of flavors/colors in favor-type bags.  The best part is that Melissa creates custom labels for the bags!  I told her what it was for and she created these ADORABLE labels for the bags.
Look how she added the cotton boll border!!  The package shipped quickly and my kids were thrilled with it and loved the personalized labels!
I created this card using the anniversary site information and tucked it inside the box.  
Doesn't this look festive and fun?!  I packed the box with colored tissue paper and threw in lots of cotton balls and the kids had such fun with it.
Last year for their first anniversary (paper), I created an album using pictures I had taken of my son from Kindergarten to 12th Grade.  I will be posting details on that project soon but basically I took pictures of each of my kids on the first day of school WALKING AWAY from me.  The final picture was always intended to be of them WALKING AWAY with their spouse on their wedding day.
Have you ever used the 'anniversary' gift list?  It's a fun way to celebrate those milestone years!
On any given week (depending on how busy I am!) I love to participate in Link Parties.  These gals put a lot of time and effort into hosting these parties so I always want to show my appreciation by directing my readers to these blogs. 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday


Thursday, July 6, 2017

Dementia Games & Activities DIY

  
Many of you know that my mom has dementia.  She is in the later stages now where she is finding it nearly impossible to communicate verbally and doesn't often recognize most of us.  She lives about 8 hours from me so I try to get to see her as often as possible.  Recently I made some activities to try with her so I thought I'd share them with you.  The first one is simple and any cloth bag will do.  I made a lot of things pink because that's her favorite color.  

Just fill with simple items they will recognize by feel.  I did just one item at a time.  Many items she couldn't find the word for so we kind of gestured and pointed so I knew she KNEW what was in the bag, she just couldn't find the word for it. I added things like sunglasses/glasses; comb; hairbrush; toothbrush; balloon; ball - things that again are easily recognizable by feel.
This next one was simple to make from paint sample chips and clothespins.  

All you do is gather TWO chips of each color; one for the card and one to punch a shape and attach to the clothespin. Again, since my mom is in the later stages, I had to only put out TWO color cards and the TWO matching clothespins so it narrowed her choices.  I would pick up a card and ask 'which clothespin goes with this card?' and she could then point to the correct one.  She cannot clip the pin to the card so I did that part.
I put it all in a tin box I had that I decorated in yes, pink.
Fabric matching/sorting is a fun, easy game as well to make and play.  I cut 4-5 pieces of each fabric and put them in a box that I decorated.
To play, you simply lay out all of the pieces and try to group all of one kind in piles.  Again, because my mom's disease is more advanced, I had to just put out TWO different types of fabric and we both worked on gathering them.
Finally, we did some 'flower arranging'.  My mom has always loved flowers so I thought this would be fun for her.  She was "amaaaazed" at all the pretty flowers!

 I covered soup cans with paper and took a bunch of stickers.  I helped her decorate the cans with the stickers.  Then we arranged the flowers in the cans.  This is an activity that the person can do over and over.  Just remove the flowers, put them on the table and make new arrangements.
While all of these activities were great -- I think they are best suited for someone who's disease is not as advanced.  BUT, I still think they are beneficial, even if YOU are doing most of the work because it provides a diversion, stimulation, interaction and I do believe some pleasure for the person.  I'm hoping these ideas help someone and I'll continue to try to come up with more things to help my mom.
On any given week (depending on how busy I am!) I love to participate in Link Parties.  These gals put a lot of time and effort into hosting these parties so I always want to show my appreciation by directing my readers to these blogs. 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday


Saturday, June 17, 2017

Vintage Caster Wheel Photo Bookends

This is my husband's Father's Day present. 
I've been looking for some vintage caster wheels for awhile for this project and last week while driving home from a visit to my parent's, I spotted a "Barn Sale" sign and of course told my husband we HAVE to go check it out! It was an experience to say the least (more to come about the sale in another post!).  But while digging through the piles of stuff I spotted these wheels . . . covered in gunk, dirt and grease.  For 5.00 . . . they were mine!  I did some research on how to clean these.  Do you know there was actually an article on cleaning vintage steel caster wheels??

After first cleaning as much as I could with a wire brush, they went into a white vinegar bath for 24 hours.  Isn't that a pretty sight? Just look at all that crud that floated away.  Per the instructions, I rinsed them thoroughly and dried them.
I love that the vinegar bath even removed all of the crud in the nooks and crannies that I would have never been able to get to.  I also had to stabilize the 'swivel' of these.  If you are just making them for photo display, it wouldn't matter and you could skip this step. I just wound some thin wire around to disrupt the 'swivel'.
For the base I bought these moulding pieces from Home Depot for under 2.00 each.  I drilled the holes for the screws and then painted them black.  I added a piece of cork onto the bottoms to finish the base off.
All of this was the easy part.  The photos . . . that was another story.  I started by measuring the diameter of the wheels with a strip of paper to see how many/what size photos I needed for each wheel.
Then I printed a few sample strips, adjusted the photos and finally printed them on matte photo paper.  I cut them to fit the width of the wheel.  
  Then came my first "fail".  I tried using double stick tape to attach them to the wheels.  It didn't stick.  At all.  Toss that set out.  Print second set.
Go with good, old Mod Podge (I used the matte finish).  I applied a thick layer directly to the metal wheel, then to the back of the photo strip, then another layer on top of the photos.  I smoothed it out with my finger and set them aside to dry . . . until I realized I had applied the photos UPSIDE DOWN.  Because these are being used as bookends, I need the photos to be 'viewable' from a distinct direction.  Sigh.
After much peeling and scraping, I got most of the photo paper off and started all over again.
I did add a second coat of Mod Podge to seal them extra well and then they were finished!  The steel will continue to rust and age which I like.
I also did some research on the value of these . . . they are selling online for as much as 50.00 each so I think my $5.00 was well spent!
If you can't find two of these wheels, I think it makes a great photo display as a single wheel too.
Men are SO hard to buy/craft for!  What ideas do you have or have you made for the men in your life? I'd sure love more ideas!

On any given week (depending on how busy I am!) I love to participate in Link Parties.  These gals put a lot of time and effort into hosting these parties so I always want to show my appreciation by directing my readers to these blogs. 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday



Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Ceiling Globe Solar Lights


I've seen several versions of this.  Gail @ Myrepurposedlife 
provided a very nice tutorial on this.  She used ceiling fan globes and I used ceiling light globes.  The difference is that the fan globes are open and the ceiling light fixture globes I used are closed.  I used the light globes because that's what I had.  You can find these at every thrift store and ReStore for just a dollar or less.  I bought the cheapest 'stick in the ground' solar lights at Big Lots and unscrewed the solar part from the rest of the light.
 I used electrical wire (because I have a big roll of it from the ReStore) but you could use any wire you have on hand.  Form the hanger first as pictured above.
 You will want to slip those hooks onto the wire that goes around the neck of the globe BEFORE you tighten the ring.
 Gail mentions that she just set her solar lights onto the globe or she says you can attach with E6000 glue.  I wanted them attached but not permanently in case I need to replace the solar light in the future.  My solution was to use Red Liner Tape.  You can find this super sticky, double sided tape at most craft stores.  I use it for a lot of things so I got mine on Ebay.  It comes in different widths (I used the 1/4" wide here) and was originally designed for use to secure toupees and wigs!  I love it -- it's one of the 'tools' I could not do without.  I applied it to the rim of the globe.
 Here you see it with the backing pulled off and ready for me to attach the solar light.  I then simply pressed the light onto the globe.
 I love this one -- it kind of looks like a cluster of grapes.  None of my globes match and I like that.  You could certainly do matching ones if you wanted to.  
 I love how the shapes of these cast pretty designs on the garage at night.
My neighbors have already commented on how pretty they look at night.  I'm planning to do more of these for sure.  An inexpensive, easy project to add interest and lighting to your garden and yard!  I hope you are enjoying this summer -- we are in the midst of a delightful heat wave and I have to say -- I am loving it!
This is where I hang out most of the summer! I love sitting out here on hot summer nights reading or working on my blog . . . it's my retreat.


On any given week (depending on how busy I am!) I love to participate in Link Parties.  These gals put a lot of time and effort into hosting these parties so I always want to show my appreciation by directing my readers to these blogs. 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Strawberry Shortcake Kit


It's that time of year.  Whether it's a gift for your child's teacher or simply a unique hostess gift that you need, here's something just about everyone will enjoy.  Combine fresh, sweet strawberries, a can of whipped topping and some homemade shortcakes for a fun, easy gift.
 You could use any container for your berries but I love these rustic berry boxes from Hobby Lobby.
 I added a card with a simple 'recipe'.
 Once everything was inside the basket, these gift bags from the Dollar Store made these look so professional!
 The white, wire baskets are also from the Dollar Store and were the perfect size for everything.  I bought little treat bags to hold the shortcakes and created a little card: "Thanks BERRY much for a great year" -- these are all in my fridge right now waiting to be given to the wonderful teachers who serve under me at our church.
 You could definitely use store-bought shortcakes but I opted to make mine.  They were really quite simple and for me, they make the dessert (along with of course, the WHIPPED CREAM!).  I looked at a lot of different recipes and opted for this one from All Recipes, "Scrumptious Strawberry Shortcake". I made a few changes based on others' comments and they turned out DElicious!

Scrumptious Strawberry Shortcake

Wash and slice 4 c strawberries.  Sprinkle with 1/4 c sugar, stir and let sit for at least an hour.  The longer it sits, the more juice that will be produced to soak into your shortcakes.

Combine: 3 c flour, 1/4c sugar, 3 t baking powder

Cut in 1 cup margarine (Orig. recipe calls for butter)

Add 1 beaten egg and 3/4 c half & half (others used milk and said it was fine too)  Work until dough starts to come together then continue kneading a few minutes on a floured surface.  Pat out to 1/2" thickness and cut in squares or rounds, whichever you prefer.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.  Cool. Slice and top one slice with berries, put 'top' on, add more berries and whipped cream.

I had blackberries so I added those.  You could use ANY fruit and this would make a lovely, summer dessert.  A fun kit to make to give . . . or keep for yourself to enjoy!


On any given week (depending on how busy I am!) I love to participate in Link Parties.  These gals put a lot of time and effort into hosting these parties so I always want to show my appreciation by directing my readers to these blogs. 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday


 



 

I'VE BEEN FEATURED!