My little artist

Hello everybody!  I hope you guys are well.  Yesterday night, my husband and I went to our first parent/teacher conference.  It was pretty exciting to see the classroom where my daughter goes to learn Monday through Friday.  It was bigger than I had imagined so that was impressive and reassuring.  Before we entered the classroom, our daughter showed us her artwork displayed on the bulletin board that was titled, “Our Summer.”

I had provided her teacher with some pictures of our vacation to Massachusetts and my daughter drew a picture of us in our rental house and wrote down that she went on vacation during the summer.  I’m one proud mama! 🙂

My daughter has been practicing writing way before she started school.  Sometimes it’s a task for her, but when it comes to arts and crafts, she’s all smiles.  The other day she took a piece of paper and her scissors and started cutting away.  She was in the zone!  When she finished, I was so proud of my little artist that I took a small, forgotten frame and gave it a makeover to display my daughter’s new artwork.  I’ve had this frame for a long time, even before my first child, and back then I decided to paint over the original color.  I was new to arts and crafts so my attempt to redesign was amateurish.  I like to believe that I know a heck of a lot more now when it comes to crafting so my frame got a new paint job.  For some UNKNOWN reason (maybe a brain fart, I don’t know), I absolutely forgot to take a before pic.  😦  Maybe subconsciously, I didn’t want anyone to see how ugly the frame was before, but here it is now:

 

How awesome and fitting are the apples on this frame?  I gave it about four coats of Anita’s All Purpose Acrylic True Red (#11003) paint, used FolkArt Varnish Gloss (882) to make it shine, and for the panel inside the frame, I couldn’t wait to use the Americana Chalkboard paint, which as you can see, it worked!  I wrote, Mami and Olivia, because my daughter told me that she made us.  She cut out little pieces of paper, then glued them together, and drew what she wanted.  When she saw the frame with her work, her humongous smile was so heart warming.  Now, I’m making it my mission to have markers, crayons, scissors, glue, pencils, etc. easily available for her so her imagination and creativity can soar from her mind onto paper for everyone to see.

Just like this other piece, made with markers.

Take care all.  Until next time…

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Schools closed…hello happy butterfly

Hello everybody!  Well, schools closed in observance of Yom Kippur and I asked my daughter what she wanted for lunch.  She replied so innocently, “A butterfly.”  She just melts my heart away.  🙂

Her butterfly is made of PBJ sandwich, mozzarella/cheddar cheese stick, one pickle cut in half, two chocolate chip morsels, and marshmallows from her cereal.

Take care all.  Until next time…

Drink More Green Tea

Hello everybody!  I hope you guys are well.  I wanted to share the pin on www.pinterest.com that convinced me to start drinking green tea.  Let me be honest with you, I’ve tried tea before, not green tea, flavored teas and I didn’t like them, but this pin was pretty convincing, especially the part where it says that it rehydrates you better than water and oh yeah, it prolongs your life.

So I thought, “What the heck! At least, give it a try.”

I bought several brands to taste out which one I would like best and so far this one is my favorite.  It’s also available in organic, decaffeinated, and different flavors, but I’ll stick with the decaffeinated one for now.

I brew a quart (4 tea bags for 4 cups) a day, and add nothing to it.  NOTHING, NADA, ZIP, ZILCH.  When I told my sister how I drank the tea, she immediately said, “Yuck” and I could visualize her making that yuck face.  🙂   The taste is subtle, which is great for me because I’m still getting used to drinking it.  I don’t necessarily like the after taste, but that doesn’t last long so I can deal with it.  In the long run, if this gives my health a boost then I really have nothing to lose.  Except, maybe some pounds and I’ll drink to that, HAPPILY.  “Cheers!”

Take good care.  Until next time…

DIY fabric covered wooden letters

Hello everybody! I hope you guys are well.  I wanted to share with you my second project that I did this past Friday.

I’ve had this letter A and this pink toile fabric for a long time now.  I love this fabric so much that I decided to use it to decorate the letter A, which is my first initial.  I’ve never done this project before so I just did it my way and took pictures highlighting each step that I thought was helpful.  Basically, it’s like wrapping a present and using glue instead of tape.

Here’s what I did:

Using a ruler I outlined the letter (I didn’t trace it) on the front of the fabric because I needed more fabric for the sides and I wanted to see exactly what part was going to show.  I also used a vanishing marker.

I used my rotary cutter and mat.

This time I traced the letter on the other side of the fabric so I could know exactly where to place it down once I applied the glue to the letter.

I glued the letter down and these were my tools.  I used my x-acto knife, sharp scissors, a ruler (borrowed from my daughter :)), vanishing marker, glue, and a Q-tip (the top of my glue was broken so I used a Q-tip to apply the glue onto the front and sides of the letter).

Using my ruler, I started marking where I would cut and glue the fabric.  The process was like wrapping a gift.

As you can see in the pic above I lost some of the fabric due to the curve of the letter A so I just took a small piece of fabric and glued it onto the spot and then covered the side with the rest of the fabric already there.

Working my way around…progress.

For the little hole in the letter A, I used my x-acto knife and made a cut in the form of a cross all the way to the edge and glued the fabric.  At the bottom of the A, I used my sharp scissors and made cuts at the corners and glued the fabric as neatly as I could.  As you can see, there are some parts that are not covered.

Just take a scrap piece of fabric, make sure that it covers the area well and glue it on.  Now you’re covered!

Same process and…

…I’m done!  I love, love, love my fabric covered wooden letter.  After taking this picture so you guys can see it,  I placed it on my dresser and it looks fabulous.  I’m so happy with the result.  Now, I have a great gift idea and more arts and crafts to do for the future. 🙂

I hope you like this crafty idea.

Take care all.  Until next time…

A set of keys

Hello everybody!  I hope you guys are well.  Yesterday I decided to do some arts and crafts.  It’s been awhile and I was simply in the mood, plus my daughter was taking her nap.  It doesn’t get any better than that, unless you’re taking a nap as well, but I was never good at that so crafting it is.  My first project involved a set of brass decorative keys and paint.  I have been wanting to do this for a long time now so what better time than the present.

Here’s what I did:

I purchased this lovely set of keys from a catalog, Terry’s Village, a long time ago.  You can check out their website for great, inexpensive home decor at terrysvillage.com.

Got my paint and brush ready.  I chose a baby blue, but I’ve had this bottle for a while now so I was scared that the paint inside was bad, but a good shake revealed that all was good.

I wanted some of the brass to show so I didn’t paint the key completely.  I let each key dry and then I painted the ring that held them together.

I love my new set of keys.  I love the blue shade and the brass gives it an antique look.  The painting process was actually quite calming, especially when there’s a two-year old napping away peacefully.  🙂

Take care all.  Until next time…

Loving this!

After dropping off my daughter at school this morning, I took a picture of this sidewalk bicycle parking rack.  They’re new around my neighborhood.  The design is simple and I absolutely love them, especially the NYC emblem in the middle.  Once I got home, I looked them up and found out that they’re called CityRacks.  They were placed to encourage cycling for commuting.  If you would like to read more about them go to  http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/html/bicyclists/bikerack.shtml

Take good care!  Until next time…

A sharpie keeps my mind sane

Hello everybody!  I hope you guys are well.  Ever open a can of corn, place it in the fridge, forget about it and then wonder how long it’s been in there?  I don’t like guessing or even taking the chance of eating something that’s gone bad.  Placing a sharpie marker in my kitchen was my solution.

 

Every time I open something that has a label, as you can see in the example above, I simply write the date on it. Simple as that! Now, no more guessing games and my mind is sane, thanks to a sharpie.

I even placed another sharpie in my bathroom so I could label my makeup!  Now that’s peace of mind as well because it’s best to replace your stuff so you’re not putting anything old on your face.  Sometimes the packaging, for example the L’Oreal Youth Code tube in the pic above, doesn’t let the marker adhere or sometimes your date rubs off after too much handling like the mascara tube.  My solution is a small strip of tape that allows you to write perfectly and sometimes I cover the date with another piece of tape so it doesn’t wear away.

I hope you like this tip and if it brings you sane of mind, then my job here is done.  Take care all!

Until next time…

DIY project with iron on transfer, a great picture and a tote bag

Hello everybody! I hope you guys are well.  Today I want to share with you a project that I love to make and give as a gift.  I love to add an unexpected and personal touch to a gift that actually comes from the person the gift is intended for.

For example:

My wonderful cousin, Janice, is an amateur photographer and she currently lives in Huntsville, Alabama.  Needless to say, I MISS HER GREATLY!  One day while driving, she spotted a gorgeous, enormous tree.  The sun was illuminating it perfectly.  A scene like that, you got to act fast if you want to capture it for life.  So she quickly pulled to the side of the road, got her trusty camera, and took several shots.

Ninety-five percent of the time when I receive a letter or greeting card from my cuz, there’s a picture or more inside.  Who’s the subject of the picture?  That’s the exciting part.  It’s always different.  It could be a funny picture of one of her cats, a butterfly outside her window, art displayed on the sidewalk in the city, a waterfall, horses, etc.  We love corresponding through snail mail because it’s so much more personal and it’s our special thing.  When I received a copy of her magnificent tree, it spoke volumes on how good of an eye she has and how talented she is with her camera.  This picture needed to be displayed, for her, but where?

Here’s the pic:

I love using iron on transfers, especially on t-shirts, but I wanted to use something different.  At A.C. Moore craft store, I stumbled upon cotton tote bags.  They were like blank canvases that you could decorate, but instead of hanging them on the wall, you could carry your masterpiece for all the world to see.  You could wear a t-shirt for a day, but you can carry your bag almost every day. 🙂

After scanning the picture on my printer, I inserted the pic into a word document and copy and pasted my cousin’s signature at the bottom of the pic.  This, I felt, added an extra personal touch.  I saved my project and printed it out on iron on transfer paper (tip: always remember to read the instructions on how to print your image on the transfer paper).

Once I had the image ready, I got my iron, a pillowcase, and a piece of wood that’s big enough to lay your project down.  Lay your pillowcase down on the piece of wood, iron out any wrinkles so you can have a smooth surface, and do the same for the tote bag.  Position your transfer where you want it to be and iron away.  Give it time to cool and then peel away the backing of the paper.

Here’s my project completed:

I was so happy with this bag that I almost kept it, but I didn’t because I knew it would bring so much joy to my cousin.  I filled the bag with the rest of her Christmas presents and when she received it, she was so happy and couldn’t wait to use her new tote bag.

I hope this idea inspires you to make many different and personal projects either to keep or to give.  Until next time…