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Tag Archive for "Crafts" - Buzz Cuts & Ponytails

Posts Tagged ‘Crafts’

November Show

Posted on: November 12th, 2013 by ssteinruck No Comments

Last weekend I showcased my Personalized Gifts & Decor at an open house, and it was a great success! Thank you to my pal Kelly for hosting, and to my mom and sister for being there too. Julie (my lil sis!) even had a table of her own bag collections for sale. I'll be featuring her in a post soon!

It was a holiday weekend, so I know a lot of people were away. If you missed it or need to take another look, I will have open studio hours this Friday and Saturday from 9-1. (By "studio" I mean my dining room.) If you're local, feel free to stop by and look through this season's items - lots of gift ideas for everyone on your list!

Here are pics from the show...

Custom Signs on Canvas, Wood, or Slate

Barnwood signs, hooks, and vases

Customize these magnet boards with names or monograms. Fabric magnet boards can be any size with a fabric of your choice! My kids have these instead of cork boards - I'd much rather step on a stray magnet than a fallen thumbtack!

Designer clothespins with magnetic strip on the back. Perfect for teacher appreciation gifts!

Lots of choices for teacher gifts - custom clipboards & post-it note holders, glass magnets, binder clips, magnetic clothespins & matching desk sets too!

These gift baskets are perfect for anyone's desk! These include a tissue pocket, note cards, binder clips, coaster, magnet board, glass magnets, and pen holder...all in an adorable wire basket with a chalkboard label. Gift baskets can be totally customized to suit your needs!

Choose your design and add an initial to make an easy gift for any occasion! Do a set using a map of a favorite spot too!

Personalized glass ornaments and handmade knit ornaments.

I do silhouettes and all kinds of vinyl lettering and designs. Laptop skins, monogram on your car window or phone, words on your wall, buckets, jars, trays - you name it!

Cute tins and wire baskets! I can personalize it and create a great gift basket!

Great for labeling baskets,  dishes at potlucks, place cards at holiday meals or weddings! These chalkboard clips can stand up on their own too!

Decorative baskets and bottles. Four shapes of paperweights to customize too!

I can personalize these paperweights with quotes, monograms, maps, or pictures.

Custom made hair accessories for the princesses in your life! I can also make you a bow holder to coordinate with her bedroom!

Personalized snack bags and tissue pockets return this year. A new item - a travel toiletry roll - can also be monogrammed! Perfect for toothbrushes - throw it in the wash when you get home! No more messy wet baggies!

Our clearance sale of all our knit hats and baby blankets - not taking orders for these, but still have a few left in stock!

See anything you like? Don't forget to stop by my studio later this week. You can always contact me with questions or orders as well. Thanks! I'm off to create lots of custom items for some of my favorite people!




Horse Birthday Party

Posted on: April 25th, 2013 by ssteinruck 4 Comments

The Bear loves horses. In fact, 80% of the time, she's pretending she is a horse. So naturally, she wanted a horse themed party for her 5th birthday. (Oh my word, my baby is 5!!) After researching horse parties on Pinterest, I had a plan. Ten 4-5 year olds. An hour and a half on a Saturday morning. Simple. Fun. Short.

The kids were divided into three groups and sent to one of three stations: horse coloring pages, making a hobby horse, and a blue ribbon craft. The Bear just floated in between each station, since she thought she should be a "helper" at her party. Bud managed the coloring pages, which I just printed off from various free online coloring page sites (also found on Pinterest.) I manned the glue gun and did the hobby horses. Here is the source of my inspiration for noodle hobby horses, complete with a tutorial (so I won't reinvent the wheel.) And this is our version...with a few minor alterations.

Pool noodles were from the dollar store, and each horse used one 8x10-ish piece of felt. I had the eyes and yarn. So all in all, this craft was very affordable! It helped to have all the pieces already cut out and ready to be hot glued onto the noodle. Felt can be hard to cut with kid-friendly scissors. The kids loved their horses, and as we assembled them, we talked about horses and named each of them. Some names were Scarlet, Ruth, Miriam, and - my favorite - Noodle. Super cute!

Girly and my mom (the ultimate former-kindergarten teacher) ran the ribbon craft. Here's how they were made.

Baking cups. I found these at Party City in a package with red and white cups too - in the patriotic party section. But you can also order only blue from Amazon, which I would have done if I had planned more in advance. You'd think I could do that, as a former event planner, but it was birthday marathon week (Bud turned 9 the same week, and had a sleepover party), so I was still running around the day before the party. I designed and cut out the pieces from cardstock using my Silhouette Cameo, which made it super easy and saved time cutting. Here are a few pics of the process...

After you stick the back circle on, the front looks a bit wrinkled.

But just use your fingers to gently smooth it out like this.

Before the glue dries, gently stick your paperclip in the back. This way, you can hang it on your horse.

You can use any kind of shape or color for the front. You could have "#1", or "Best in Show" written on there - anything goes. Just glue the pieces on and try to keep things centered.

Next just glue the two ribbon tails together and to the back.

And hang it on your horse!

Here are some more pics of the party set up.  This is our entryway dresser. I used raffia for hey. And that is a cheap charger plate spray painted with chalkboard paint. Chalk art courtesy of Mr. Helpful. The red bowl is filled with horseshoes which you'll see up close in a second.

Apples and carrots for the horses. And cupcakes of course! For drinks, we had juice pouches and lemonade. Simple simple simple!

As our party guests left, they got one of these horseshoes I got for free from a local ferrier (which is the person who shoes horses - learn something new every day!) Mr. Helpful scrubbed them clean, and I made these tags in my Silhouette software.

Party success! And a happy birthday girl!


Fort Kit

Posted on: March 27th, 2013 by ssteinruck No Comments

Kids birthday parties. Lots of fun. But honestly, getting a present for one of my kids - especially my son -  to bring to a friend's birthday party stresses me out. Maybe because I feel like these kids have everything already. Maybe because I feel like my choices in the store are...well...crap. In my opinion the only toy worth anything anymore are the tried and true Legos. But the sets that these 9 and 10 year olds would want cost a pretty penny that I don't have to spend on gifts. And most of my son's friends are as obsessed with interested in Legos as he is, so they have plenty.

Second to Legos for Bud is building forts with the couch cushions and every other blessed pillow, blanket, and sheet he can find. So when I saw DIY Fort Kits on Pinterest, I thought I'd give it a try. How nice would it be if his forts were made with sheets meant for forts? And, when he's done, they all go back into a pillowcase bag. I really don't care if they're folded or not!

And, what a great birthday gift!

Trying to be thrifty, I stopped by Good Will and hit the jackpot. Two twin flat sheets and a pillowcase. All for under $5. At Walmart I found some clothespins, clothesline rope, and a flashlight also under $5. I did spring for bungie cords ($5) to round out the kit. I found a little white pouch in my stash to hold the clothespins. The rope ends would fray, so I burned the ends a little with a lighter I use for ribbon. I washed the sheets and pillowcase, which would be the "bag". Then I cut strips from old white tshirt for ties and sewed them around the edges of the sheets. I put a little drawstring around the opening of the pillowcase. To finish I made a little tag and laminated it. Boom. Done. For under $15.

If Bud is invited to your son's birthday, I've just spoiled the surprise of his gift. I may even do a girly version for the girls!

Happy Valentine's Day

Posted on: February 14th, 2013 by ssteinruck No Comments

I'm not a huge fan of Valentine's Day. I'll just put that out there. We (should) show love to others every day. Right? But the kids still have Valentine's parties at school and exchange cards/candy with their classmates. This morning, I led groups of 3rd graders in this craft:

source: http://spoonful.com/crafts/jolly-lollies

Most kids chose to do the mustache. Interesting. Mustaches are "in" apparently. We also did a version of Pin the Tail on the Donkey. Only  it was Put the Lips on Mrs. Valentine. Silliness! They loved it, and should be on a nice sugar high when they come off the bus today.

The Bear only has 5 other kids in her sweet preschool class. So we got each of them a little red bucket from the dollar spot at Target and filled it with treats. Of course, I put each child's name on the bucket with my fabulous Silhouette.

And, since it's taken me all day to actually finish this post, due to countless interruptions, I can confirm the after-school sugar high. And now we wait for the crash! Happy Valentine's Day ya'll!



Home show this Friday!

Posted on: November 27th, 2012 by ssteinruck No Comments

Please come check out my handmade personalized gifts & decor at my open-house style home show this Friday, November 30 from 7-9:30! Contact me for details. Can't come on Friday and want to purchase something from the ShopContact me to place an order.

Thanks so much for your amazing support and encouragement!

New "Old" Sign

Posted on: October 19th, 2012 by ssteinruck No Comments

My dad recently turned 70. I wanted to get him something, but - and this is awful - I didn't want to spend any money. (I get that from my dad, by the way.) So I used what I had and made him a personalized sign for his workshop.

I had wood left over from my Family Coaster Tray project. I wanted to make a sign that looked old and a bit weathered. Did you know you can make your own wood stain with household items? Make yourself a pot of coffee. Save the coffee grounds and put them in a sealable container. I used a mason jar. (Isn't that what all the cool crafters use these days?) Add some vinegar (about 1 cup-ish) and put about half a pad of steel wool in too. Close it up and let it sit overnight. And yes, I got the DIY stain idea from Pinterest. (Coffee grounds aren't necessary, as I later was informed...but I think it gave it a darker look.)

Apply the stain with the steel wool, wiping off any coffee grounds. It's a stinky project, but the smell does go away after it dries for awhile. After a couple of coats, new wood looks like this.

My used my amazing Silhouette Cameo and cut out "Pop's Shop" and used the outline as a stencil.

Using watered down craft paint and a foam brush, I filled in the letters. The watered down paint allowed the wood grain to show through, giving it a nice weathered look.

Once dry, I unstuck the stencil and lightly sanded the board again to slightly remove some of the paint. I didn't want it to be shiny, so I skipped polyurethane. Maybe there's a sealer out there that wouldn't negate the aged wood look, but I don't know about it. It would be nice to have it sealed because the stain did come off on my hands a bit. But it was going to sit in Pop's Shop, not be handled much, so I didn't mind.

Dad loved it! Happy Birthday Pop!


Family Coasters

Posted on: October 11th, 2012 by ssteinruck No Comments

You know when you go to a party, and you put your name on a plastic cup so you (and everyone else) knows whose cup is whose? Well, I need to do this in my house. My kids will easily fill up the top rack in the dishwasher in one day if I don't catch them and tell them to reuse their cups.

One of my latest projects solves this problem. And as usual, I found the idea on Pinterest and shamelessly copied it. It's a family coaster tray. And my first attempt at this project was for my BFF and her family.

Problem solved...that is...if they remember to use it! Definitely making one for my crew too!

Spring Wreath

Posted on: March 29th, 2012 by ssteinruck 1 Comment

My front door was looking a bit bare. With spring temps in January/February, I was inspired to go use some springy ribbon and a wreath form. My plan was to do a fun ribbon wreath like I've seen on Pinterest, like this one.

source: She's Kinda Crafty

Nevermind that I've had my supplies for almost a month, just sitting in my studio. Now it's officially spring and my wreath is officially hanging on my door. I started with a 12 inch wreath form and five colors of polka dot ribbon.

I had skinnier grosgrain ribbon in my stash in solid colors to match each of the five polka dot ribbons. These were used more as fillers here and there to cover up the green wreath form. I cut strips around 4 inches long and hot glued each into a loop.

I found it easiest to cut a batch of strips and get them all glued into loops, as opposed to doing one loop at a time on the wreath. I did not use a pattern for colors or position - just randomly glued my loops onto the wreath, moving around until it was fully covered.

I ended up using all of the polka dot ribbon - a total of 45 feet of ribbon! That's not including the grosgrain! Definitely a time consuming project - not hard at all - just time consuming. But I'm pretty happy with the result!


Happy Spring!


Kitchen Chalkboard

Posted on: February 8th, 2012 by ssteinruck No Comments

There is a space on my kitchen wall between the end of my cabinets and the beginning of the window that has been empty far too long. I wanted to find one of those swirly vintage frames from an old mirror or something. My plan was to spray paint the frame a fun color, and make it into a chalkboard. I've seen lots of them on Pinterest like this.

Source: Little Lucy Lu

But during a recent date with Mr. Helpful to the closest Hobby Lobby (30 minutes away!), my love for "swirly" was met with great resistance. I found lots of things at Hobby Lobby that qualify as that style. None of which got any support from him. (And yes, I did say "date" because it included dinner and did not include any children.)

We were able to meet in the middle and decide that a simple oval frame would work. I know. Drastic move. Everything else in our house has straight lines and squared off corners. It was our compromise between straight and swirly. But, after several laps around the store - just to be sure we looked at everything at least twice - we also found a cool wooden tray. Yes, it was a straight rectangle. Not anything close to my vintage swirls. But a tray would catch the chalk dust, and provide a little shelf on which to place the chalk.

We suffer from major practical-itus. It's been plaguing us since before we were married. I don't think there's a cure. We will forever think practical, buy practical, do practical.

So we bought the tray. Which would catch the chalk dust, hold the chalk, and was cheaper anyway. (Annoyingly practical.)

I was going to post the dinner "menu" on it. But we've had an increase in sibling disputes and they've just plain been mean to each other lately. So I found a great Bible verse to put up to remind them that it's not just Mommy who's telling them to be nice. I love that I can tell them that I'm just following God's instructions when I insist they be sweet to each other. His words are way more powerful than mine!


Yarn Letter

Posted on: January 19th, 2012 by ssteinruck No Comments

I was curious. I've seen all the fabulous yarn wrapped letters on Pinterest. But I can't find the letters at any of my local craft stores. I've heard Hobby Lobby has them, but sadly, I do not have a Hobby Lobby nearby. (sniffle, tear.) Then I found this tutorial using cardboard to make the letters. I can do that. I have cardboard boxes.

I printed my letter (S) and cut it out. I traced it twice on a piece of cardboard and cut them out too. My exacto knife is now dull.

And now I have a bonus cardboard stencil, should I ever need one.

Then I used the scraps of cardboard to make "sides" and taped them to the letters, making a 3-D letter. I did not do sides all the way around - just enough to add support and create a relatively solid letter to wrap around. I'm also fairly confident in saying that my letter - S - is one of the harder ones. An "L" seems like it would be way easier, without all the curves. I bet B's are hard too.

I cut short pieces of yarn to go over the ends, and hot glued them in place.

Then I just started wrapping. And wrapping. And wrapping. I wasn't going for a super tailored look. I just wanted the yarn to cover the cardboard and look neat, but casual. A dab of hot glue on the back side secured the end.

Not sure where I'll put it yet. I'm thinking about hanging it with ribbon from the mirror over the fireplace. Or possibly setting it on one of our ledge shelves along with the photos there.

It was a very easy project. I'd like to do more letters and make a yarn wrapped "LOVE" and maybe "JOY" for other holidays. I could do the kids' initials too.

How would you use your letter?

Ribbon Storage

Posted on: January 11th, 2012 by ssteinruck No Comments

I recently spent some time in my studio (a.k.a. our dining room) taking inventory, which is another way of saying it was such a mess I had no idea what I had in there. Now it's organized. I have a lot of ribbon. I'm a recovering ribbon addict. I fully admit to buying ribbon on sale with no specific project in mind. I can't stop myself when ribbon is on sale. (Help.) There are tons of different ways to organize ribbon - some would work for me, some would not.

Source: http://minimozblog.blogspot.com/

Source: http://shannonjaredwight.blogspot.com/

Source: http://www.amazingpapergrace.com/

The system I use seems to be working, so I'm not going to mess with it. Nothing fancy. Just plastic shoebox size bins, somewhat sorted by color.

I use a pin to hold the end in so the spool doesn't unravel. Ribbon gets used to make hair bows and headbands, mostly. Occasionally I'll use some to tie a label or tag on something, if I'm trying to be all "Martha".


I do sell these headbands and/or hairbows (though I don't have the bows pictured). Headbands are $7. Bows range from $3-5, plus shipping. If you're interested, contact me, and we can figure out colors. They make very nice gifts and can be custom made to match outfits, holidays, etc.


Christmas Cone Trees

Posted on: December 16th, 2011 by ssteinruck No Comments

Whew! What a couple of weeks! I think, as of this very moment anyway, we are all on the way to good health....several trips to the doctor and multiple antibiotics later. I finally feel like maybe - just maybe - I can get my craft on once again. So here's a quick, easy, and inexpensive Christmas craft that even the kids could do.

Cone Trees. You've seen them. On Pinterest. Right? The styrofoam cones wrapped in yarn or with sparkly goodness glued on them? Yes, those. Well, I am trying not to spend money (perfect time of year for it, right?!) but I really wanted to try one of these trees. So I got creative and went digging through our recycle bin.

Cheerios. Fruity Cheerios. The kids' favorite.  And I guess because it's "Cheerios" it seems healthier than Fruit Loops. (?) A few cuts and folds of the cereal box and some bright orange ductape, and I had 3 cone trees ready to be wrapped.

In keeping with my free project goal, I went to my stash of yarn and found this fuzzy white yarn that would be fun. It's actually a little hard to knit with - it sheds - so I had no problem using it for this project. And with my love for jute, I had to try a tree with the all-natural-earthy look too. I used hot glue for the beginning and the end. I don't think it really matters, but I started at the top and worked my way down. For the white trees, I went from top to bottom back to top, to fill in and make it look fluffy and snowy.

You like?! I got 3 trees from one cereal box. I just might have to do some more. Easy. And free. For me - since I eat cereal and have a stash of yarn and jute.

Here's hoping no one in our house gets sick over the weekend! Is all your shopping done? I'm done and ready to start wrapping! Ho ho ho!

Teacher Gifts

Posted on: December 6th, 2011 by ssteinruck 3 Comments

This year when brainstorming for gifts for my kids' teachers, I went to the best source around. You guessed it: Pinterest. There are so many creative and inexpensive gift ideas out there - it was tough to pick one. The Post-It Present, from Paper Wings, stood out to me as being both useful and cute, not to mention easy and inexpensive. I have done gift cards in the past, but now with everyone in school with 2 teachers each, it's just too expensive.

Walmart had 5x7 plastic frames for 97 cents. I picked up some pretty scrapbook paper and cut two 5x7 pieces out of each for my six frames. I had ribbon to go with each design, and I purchased a pack of colorful post-it notes. I actually took a scrap of each paper with me to see if I could coordinate colors. I had trouble keeping the post-it notes on the frame with just the sticky part of the post-it. So I used some double-sided tape and that seems to be holding.

Teacher gifts. Check!


I'm linking up to


Feather Boa Wreath

Posted on: December 5th, 2011 by ssteinruck No Comments

So I saw this idea on Pinterest. Don't you love when I start like that? Hey, at least I'm trying to make the things I see on there.

Christmas wreaths have traditionally been made up of some sort of greenery. But I wanted to try something different this year. So I went with the white feather boa and foam pipe insulation. The foam stuff is cheap (found mine at HD) and you can create any size you want. But the first time I tried a wreath with the foam, it ended up bending and kinking and looking not-so-circular.

Then I found the solution. On Pinterest. (No, I'm not getting paid to promote Pinterest. I just love it!) (But if you'd like to pay me, please contact me!) Ha!

The foam insulation has a slit down one side that you can pull/cut open. The genius of Gail at Gail Made realized that if you open up that slit, and tuck one side into the other, it allows the diameter of the inside of the circle to be less than that of the outside, since the slit lets the foam slide a little to...um...make it work. Whatever. It works!

Because my boa is white, I needed to cover the grey foam so it wouldn't show through. So I took a long sleeve white shirt that had been retired, and used the sleeves to make sleeves for the foam. It took three tube sleeves to cover the grey entirely.

Then I used clear packing tape to secure the ends of the foam together to form a circle.

I positioned the white sleeves around and overlapped them slightly so grey would not show through. I taped the overlaps to hold it in place.

The boa was easy to wrap around. I used two six-foot long boas from Michaels. I could have used more, but I only had 2, so I made it work. This is where the white sleeves came in real handy since there are some gaps in the feathers. But you'd never know it since it's white underneath too.

Once I had it wrapped all around, I showed Mr. Helpful. His first comment was that it looked like something from Victoria Secret. Nice honey. Not at all what I was going for.

So in an effort to make the wreath less...um...sexy...and more festive for Christmas, I added some red ornaments that I had in our ornament box. I just poked the wire through and stuck it into the foam.

He doesn't like it. His hesitation to comment said it all. Oh well. I like it. I think it's cute and fun and something totally unlike most of our more traditional holiday decor.

I should totally put a feather boa in Mr. Helpful's stocking. Wink wink, honey.


Road Trip Activities for Kids

Posted on: November 28th, 2011 by ssteinruck No Comments

Many people travel around the holidays to visit family and friends. We were in that group this year, and took a long torturous adventurous drive to NYC for Thanksgiving last week.  (Once we were there, it was great - it's the getting there - and getting home that's rough.) But this year, I took the bull by the horns. I searched for car-friendly kid activities to help us get through the 12-ish hour trip. I went to my go-to, Pinterest.

Of course, I was not disappointed. There are lots of ideas on there! My favorite ones involve bingo and magnets. Oh how I love the idea of things staying put and not flying all over our car. Road Trip Bingo, compliments of Kimberly, the Homemaking Expert, is fabulous! She has six different printable bingo cards -  for free! (Thanks Kimberly!) The Alphabet Search and Slug Bug games are also free at Prepared Not Scared - her travel bag ideas are fantastic!

The idea for the magnetic activity tray came from the girls over at Ladybird Ln. They made several magnetic activity sets using mostly dollar store finds! So the Bear and I went on a mission to make some variation of these for our trip.

We found inexpensive cake pans at Dollar General. I like these because they are deep and can double as a tray for meals on the go, so less things end up on the floor. (Very old french fries, gummies, and goldfish have formed a colony under the back seat of our van.) At the Dollar Tree, we picked up magnetic wooden letters. For $1. Love it! So I got 3 pans, and 3 sets of letters.


Knowing that we take these long trips occasionally, I wanted the activity trays and games to last. So I splurged and got self laminating sheets at Walmart and laminated all of my print outs. This would also allow you to use a dry erase marker to play, but I do not want my kids in the car with an open marker of any kind. I'll stick to magnets for now.

After laminating all the games, I put self adhesive magnet strips on the back of each. I just cut the magnetic sheets I had in my stash. The kids picked from my scrapbook paper and I punched out circles using my Creative Memories small circle punch. Which, by the way, is a  perfect fit for those 3/4" round craft magnets. I used my glue gun to attach the paper circles to the magnets. Not sure if that was the best option - Mod Podge may give you smoother results. Next time I'll try that.

Next I trimmed down an plain manilla folder and used double sided tape to attach coordinating scrapbook paper to fit the bottom of the pan. I sealed up the sides with packing tape - to create a pocket for the extra game cards. Then I attached the manilla folder to the bottom of the pan with double sided tape. My last step was to place a small self-adhesive magnetic strip on the inside of the pocket to hold it closed so game cards don't fall into the colony thriving under the seat.

The magnetic letters are not that strong - they kept falling off the pan. So in an effort to save them from the colony as well, I used very random scrap fabric and some string to create little pouches to hold the letters. Side note: I often wonder what other blogging moms do with their kids while they work on all their projects. In case you were too, the Bear was right by my side. She was my product tester.

So each child has their own pan, set of games, their unique color of magnet, and a pouch for letters. Do you like how I used tissue boxes and library books to prop up the pans for my photo? Nice. Ha!

Everyone has their own. Everyone can identify their own. No arguing over who's is who's. Bliss.

Mod Podged Bowl

Posted on: November 18th, 2011 by ssteinruck No Comments

I'm still a beginner Mod Podger. But I really really like it! I posted about repurposing plastic food containers awhile back. Well here is another project I did with a small container.

I used a scrap of fabric, and just folded it up around and inside the bowl, trimming where I needed to. I Mod Podged it to the plastic, then sealed the outside with Mod Podge so it's smooth. The pattern on the fabric is very easy to work with - no stripes to match up or anything. And it matches my first Mod Podge project. A few more things done in this fabric, and I'll have a complete matching set of organizing containers!

Happy Friday! Have a great weekend!

Hydrangea Flower Ball

Posted on: November 15th, 2011 by ssteinruck 1 Comment

A few weeks ago, I posted about the flower "kissing ball" I made to hang on the Bear's door. Well, after that project I was so excited to try different variations! One of my favorite flowers is the hydrangea. I love the dainty petals and variety of colors and shades even on one bloom.

I picked up Martha Stewart's Hydrangea punch, pretty scrapbook paper, and some white headed pins. Then I punched and punched and punched out what felt like a million of those little petals. I was going for variation on the flower, so I used two colors, and stacked them, alternating which color was on top.

I had a 6" styrofoam ball in my stash. So once I had a bunch of flowers assembled, I pinned them into the styrofoam. Again, this was pretty time consuming. And I did not do the whole thing in one sitting. Or two. But I love the result! I plan to incorporate this into one of the girls' rooms - not sure which yet!

This idea has been featured on lots of blogs like this one, and here too. So I don't claim originality on this one. I just love being inspired by fellow bloggers!

(Re) Using What You Have

Posted on: November 14th, 2011 by ssteinruck No Comments

Our family likes applesauce. We usually make a huge batch in the fall and freeze it in hopes that it will last the year. It never does. So we inevitably end up buying jars from the store with whatever coupon we have at that time.

I was rinsing one out for the recycle bin when I noticed how nicely my scrub brush fit inside - concealing the ugly brush part and making it easy to grab the handle. Hmmm...

So I took off the label and cleaned off the sticky stuff. Then I shook up a can of cream spray paint I had and gave the jar a few coats, with drying time in between coats. I don't have one of those amazing Silhouettes for vinyl, so I used what I had - some basic letter stencils - and traced an "S" (for our last name) onto the jar. A pro probably would have taken the time to paint on the stencil. But I took my black sharpie and filled in the outline of the letter.

To finish it off, I wrapped jute around the top. (I know, jute. Again. I love this stuff!) Now it sits beside my kitchen sink with my scrub brush at the ready. No more hunting around a pile of dirty dishes and mucky water in search of that scrub brush!

I had everything I needed, so the cost to make it was free! Well, we had to buy the applesauce initially, but even that was inexpensive with a coupon. Have you reused jars for something fun? Please comment and share - I'm always looking for new ideas!


Veterans Day

Posted on: November 11th, 2011 by ssteinruck 1 Comment

Happy Veteran's Day! Thank you to all our men and women who have served and are serving our country.  Thanks also to their families who "fly solo" at home while their loved ones serve. I have many family members and friends who fall into that category, so hugs and thanks to you all. I hear you (Veterans and Active Duty) can eat free at Applebee's today.

School is out for my kids today. Girly told me it was veterinarians day. Seems like I should teach them a little more about Veteran's Day while I have them home today. I see American Flag crafts and patriotic music in my very near future.

If you're looking for things to do with your kids today, this website has some fun Veteran's Day activities for kids of various ages. Also check out this one, and here too.

Oh, another thing on the list today: pull out Girly's tooth! Check this pic out - it's hanging by a thread! The other front tooth is loose too, so I bet we'll be singing "All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth" before too long!

Have a great weekend!



Picture Frame Wreath

Posted on: November 10th, 2011 by ssteinruck 2 Comments

My front door was severely lacking in Fall spirit - my favorite season. Something had to be done. My mom gave me an 8x10 frame - no glass, no back, just a frame that needed some gluing to repair the corners. I'm pretty sure she was going to pitch it. But I gladly took it off her hands, gave a little TLC, and it was ready for its transformation into a wreath.

First I cut and wrapped batting around it. Nothing neat and tidy, because it wasn't going to be visible - the batting was just to give the frame wreath a little bulk.

Given my new found love of jute, I started wrapping it around - not too tight because I wanted to keep the bulkiness. The wreath base looked good - very natural, which was the look I was going for.

But it needed a little pop. Naturally, I went to Pinterest to look for ideas and tutorials. I found amazing pictures and some excellent tutorials on how to create flowers on Miles of Sunshine and on Holidash. Ahh Pinterest. It's my new Google. So I picked up some felt pieces at Michael's. Yes, it's a bit tedious, cutting out all those little pieces and gluing each one individually. It's a good "while you're watching tv" project. But I think the final product was well worth it!

The best part is that I attached these flowers with a safety pin, which means I can use this wreath for just about any holiday or season, just by switching out the embellishments. I'm starting to think Christmas...ornaments? Small wrapped presents? Snow flakes? Lots of fun Christmas/Winter ideas to think about!

Repurposed Food Storage Containers

Posted on: November 9th, 2011 by ssteinruck 8 Comments

Recently, I decided to purge several plastic food storage containers due to scratches, stains, missing lids, etc. I made the switch to Pyrex when they went on sale at Kohls, and I had that coveted 30% off coupon. But I had a hard time throwing away those old containers. Surely they could be used for something!

So I got my craft on and hot-glued jute around them, inside and out. Starting at the bottom of the outside, I worked my way up and around to the bottom of the inside. The jute (and the glue - lots of it) added weight to the bowl, which is now reborn as a little basket. After I finished the first layer of jute, I added some handles and extra weight around the lip of the former container. So then I did a square one too. And I have a pile of old containers just waiting to be repurposed into fabulous little baskets and bowls.

Oooh! Aren't they cute!? No more left-overs in these babies! I can't decide what to put in them or how to display them, but I know I'm going to do more. I may try using a chunky yarn too. Or I could do a stripe. So. Many. Possibilities!

What would you do?


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About Susan

Susan I am a stay-at-home mom with three great kids, a fabulous husband, a cat, and a dog. I enjoy making things (but not cooking), painting, rearranging furniture (that one is genetic), organizing, purging, and most things DIY. Thanks for stopping by! More »