Category Archives: Projects

One thing that has been on the to-do list since, I don’t know, we moved in, has been to repair and paint the backyard shed.  This is what it looked like when me moved in:

This is a photo taken in summer 2007…which you can only imagine how much more run-down it became over the last 4 years.  We should have done something about it then, but C’s adoption took precedence that year.

SO, one day after seeing plants sprout in the rotted x-detail of the doors, Tom bought some new 2×4’s and replaced the rotting wood.  After that it was up to me to paint it.  Ugh.  I love the first 5 minutes of painting, and then it just gets tedious.  I prevailed though, and here is our “new” shed!

It looks SO MUCH better!  It even hardly cost us a thing since we had enough paint left over from re-painting the house a couple of years ago.  We really only had to spring for new wood.  We would like to eventually re-shingle the roof as well (to match the house), but I think that is for another summer…probably in another 4 years. ;)

While I’m here I’ll also post a before and after of our house, as per the aforementioned paint job.  Tom’s cousin, who used to be a professional painter, painted it for us in exchange for room and board for a few months (thanks J!).  Good deal as I really don’t think I could have done it myself.  Here’s the before in the vibrant barn red again…

I didn’t care for the 1/2 white and 1/2 red thing going on, plus that stupid scalloping you see over the porch was a nuisance to my 6’5″ husband.  Bub-bye!

Here’s the after where we used the paint color you saw previously on the shed…

My wonderful mom tore out the monstrous odd-looking plants in front of the porch a couple summers ago (thanks mom!), and I’ve been meaning to do something with that area.  We do have some rock for it sitting on the side of the house so I need to get that going.  I’m just not good at knowing what plants to put there (it’s south-facing, so they would need to be plants that love sunlight).

Anyway, that’s an update on the house and shed.  Slow-going but it’s fun to see it coming along.

A Crafty Soiree for crafts and treats…and tutorials! I’ve had a couple events over the past week that allowed me to use *some* creative energy.  I’m pretty happy with how things turned out so I thought I’d share the tutorials on my blog. Felt Rose Bouquet For a Ladies’ Christmas Dessert function at my church, I made a centerpiece to go on our table, along with a pin as a take-home gift. The centerpiece was essentially a knock-off of the one found at “Creative Jewish Mom“, but with my own touches (like adding leaves).   The roses are the same as the ones I used for my yarn wreatha couple of months back…

 I used a 6″ foam ball for the bouquet (size isn’t clear in the tutorial) and would not recommend going any larger…unless you want to go insane and wipe out the felt in every Michael’s store withing a 25 mile radius.  Making these flowers is a tedious (albeit not hard ) process!  I also chose not to glue the roses to the ball, and instead used long straight pins with a pearl end so that I could re-arrange as necessary (and it was necessary).
 Here is a picture of the pins I made as gifts for the eight ladies at the table
(they matched the bouquet even though they look like different colors in the photographs):
 
Melty Snowman Rice Krispy Treats

For my son’s school Christmas party I put these treats together.  I have seen something similar on other blogs where the snowman was on top of a sugar cookie, but I thought this version would be better for the kids who had gluten allergies (disclaimer: not sure how gluten-free these truly were since I didn’t take the time to research the chocolate I used.  You CAN do it though!)

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Melty Snowman Rice-Krispy Treats

To start, make a single batch of rice krispy treats according to package instructions, and let cool before adding snowmen (yield: 12 treats).
Ingredients:
  • White Candy Melts (one 14oz package makes 16 snowmen)
  • Mini Chocolate Chips
  • Light Cocoa Candy Melts
  • Rolos Candy
  • Candy Corn
Instructions:
  1. For each snowman, you’ll need 6 mini chocolate chips, a light cocoa candy melt, and a Rolo.
  2. To make the nose, cut the orange section from a candy corn, then slice it in half lengthwise. Roll the piece between your fingers to form a carrot shape.
  3. To assemble your snowman, melt the white candy in a bowl according to the package instructions, then scoop a rounded tablespoon onto the *cut* rice krispy treat. With the back of a spoon, smear the candy into a puddle.
  4. Working quickly, stick on the light cocoa candy melt, add a dot of white melted candy, then place the Rolo on top (side-note: if you assemble the hats beforehand, it makes for faster assembly).
  5. Finally, add the candy corn nose and mini chocolate chip eyes and mouth (I used tweezers for accuracy in placement).
  6. Let treats set and enjoy!

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What crafts and special treats are you making this holiday season?

This post has been linked to:

MakingThe Girl CreativeSumo Sweet Stuff

I’ve been wanting to make a yarn wreath for awhile now. I really admire the wreaths from Itz Fitz, but really don’t want to spend the money.  So, I researched yarn wreaths on the web and found that it is not that hard to make one myself!  I got the wreath from a dollar store, used some yarn from my old knitting days, and bought felt to make the flowers (per this tutorial).  The result?

I’m pretty darn proud of myself, not bad for a first try. :)

Wrapping the yarn around the foam wreath was a bit tedious, so since the yarn is neutral in color, I came up with the idea of just pinning the flowers to the wreath and changing them out for seasons and holidays.  For instance, I want to make more orange flowers and add some black ones for Halloween.  Too fun, and very easy peasy (it literally took me two hours)!!

 

(misc. stuff…is that redundant?  Oh well)
Hard to believe it’s only June 17th…we’ve done a lot this month! Water-logged camping trip aside, we have had a great time with Grandpa Al this week. Let me share some pictures with you since I now can unabashedly show off my new camera. Although, you’ll have to forgive me for the ones that have focus or lighting issues. I’m still learning…

I love these Pics with Grandpa and the kids reading a book…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We also purchased a new addition.  We bought a new (used) playset for the kids.  This was a gift from Grandpa and us in order to get the kids to play outside more because these kids deserve it.

 
The fun part of assembly
(I forgot to take pics of the wood-strewn-across-the-yard phase)
 The finished product.  This was put together in 1/2 a day…not bad, boys!
Argish was a bit perturbed that we were building this contraption where he typically goes the bathroom, but throwing the ball a bit made it seem not so bad and his attitude got better.

C also had his first t-ball game today.  He did really well, aside from the fact we had to talk about not doing somersaults in the field while he waits for kids to hit the ball.  For those of you not familiar with t-ball games…it makes professional games look like non-stop-adrenaline-pumping action, by comparison.

So, that’s our summer so far.  Hope yours is fun and exciting too!