Easy Back to School Crafts

August 19, 2014 in Crafts

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It’s almost here! That exciting Back-to School time! Your children may be getting restless these days, ready to run off to school. Here are a few crafts you can make with them to help passing the time before the exciting new school year starts. These crafts are easy to make and you can have your children make extras for their friends or as a gift to their teachers!

Easy Back to School Crafts

Foam Pencil Toppers


Making these cute pencil toppers will allow your children to use their imagination without limit! You will be surprise at their creativity as they make their favourite topper. Suggest that they make unique toppers for their friends and as a gift for their teacher as well!

You will need:

  • Foam sheets or shapes
  • White craft glue
  • Scissors
  • Wiggle eyes
  • Pom-poms
  • Pencils

Directions:

  1. Start with 2 identical shapes – for example circles or hearts.
  2. Put glue around the edges of one shape, leaving about ¾” without glue – that is where you will insert the pencil.
  3. Press second shape onto the first one
  4. The glue will need to dry for couple of hours, but you can start decorating the outside at this point
  5. Decorate using wiggly eyes, pom-poms, glitter glue – whatever  the imagination calls for.
  6. You can also make flowers using several pom-poms
  7. Once the glue dried completely, carefully insert the eraser end of a pencil into the opening.

Tie-Dye Book Cover


Letting your child create this book cover will make it his or her own – reflecting individual tastes.

You will need:

  • Large brown paper bag or brown craft paper
  • Fabric pieces
  • White craft glue
  • Small bowl
  • Water
  • Paintbrush
  • Wax paper
  • Scissors
  • Textbook

Directions:

  1. Make a shell for the book cover. After it is made, remove it and start doing the decorating.
  2. Start by cutting the paper bag open – cut from the top of the bag to the bottom at one of the corner creases. Cut the bottom off the bag – you should have a long rectangle when you are done this step.
  3. Lay the textbook in centre of the rectangle and fold top and bottom up so that the height is equal to the height of the textbook. Crease the folds using your fingers. Next – bring the left side of the paper over the book and line up ends with the right side of the paper cover. Then open the book and left side of the paper around the cover of the book. Repeat this process on the other side of the book as well.
  4. Open the cover and trim the paper to about half the width of the actual book’s cover. Use pencil to make the paper inside cover where you will trim it and repeat on the other side of the book as well.
  5. Remove the cover from the book and trim off excess paper with scissors.
  6. Carefully slide the front and back cover of the textbook into the temporary paper cover to make sure it fits well – you can adjust the height if the cover feels too snug or too loose. When youa re satisfied, remove the cover and put the textbook aside.
  7. Line surface with was paper
  8. Then mix together 2/3 of glue and 1/3 of water in a bowl with your paintbrush.
  9. Cut fabric pieces into shapes – best to work with are 2” x 2” pieces.
  10. Open paper book cover and place it good side up onto the wax paper.
  11. Start by painting a 2” section in a top corner with glue mixture. Place fabric piece onto the glue painted part. Add more glue mixture to your paintbrush and paint over the top of fabric – smoothing with the paintbrush as you are working on it. The fabric piece should be saturated but not dripping.
  12. Repeat these steps, until paper is covered completely and make sure you overlap fabric pieces to create a tie-dye effect.
  13. When paper is totally covered with fabric, open the book cover and carefully place textbook inside. Close the book carefully and place a piece of wax paper in between the front cover and front page, as well as the back cover and back page. This will keep the wet covers from sticking to the actually textbook as the cover dries. Let dry overnight.

Apple Core Magnet

This cute magnet can be used to hold pieces of special artwork, schedules, school projects or even the grocery list.

What you will need:

  • Red craft foam
  • White craft foam
  • Green craft foam
  • Brown chenille stick
  • Brown marker
  • Round magnet
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors

Directions:

  1. Trace the pattern onto red foam and cut pieces out, then repeat with white foam.
  2. Glue red foam to the white with the red on top
  3. Cut out two leaves from the green foam and use white glue to attached the leaves to the top os the apple – behind the red foam.
  4. Let dry.
  5. Cut a two inch piece off the chenille stick and hot glue it to the back of the apple, leaving about one inch showing. Bend the stem slightly.
  6. Then use brown marker to draw a few seeds.
  7. Use hot glue to attach the magnet to the back of the apple and you are done!

Hope you have enjoyed these crafts – please send in your comments, suggestions and experiences, your imput is always welcomed and very much appreciated

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How to Choose Your Valentine Rose

January 13, 2014 in Featured Articles

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red  rosesI have to say it – it really is only roses that you should consider giving to your special person for Valentines Day. In my mind – no other flowers will do. They are the traditional gift given for Valentines Day, even though it is true that they will be well received any day of the year.  But before you go ahead and buy roses, you might want to know what message you are sending, because – yes – there is a message in the colour of roses you will choose.

The colour of rose can have a very different meaning from what you have intended so to make sure your loved one understands what her roses mean, here is a guide for you:

RED ROSE: this one is simple – red roses say “I Love You” and they are the ultimate symbol of love and passion

 

YELLOW ROSE: These indicate friendship and freedom – so you do not want to send them if you have romantic intentions

 

PALE PINK ROSE: THis one says : grace, gentleness and gratitude

 

LIGHT PINK ROSE: A joy to behold, light roses express fun and happiness

 

DEEP PINK ROSE: These simply say “Thank You” and remember that this colour of roses has also become closely associated with breast cancer

 

LILAC ROSE: This colour clearly sates that the sender has fallen in love at first sight and is enchanted

 

WHITE ROSE: Pure white roses symbolize truth and innocence. They also send a message of: “I Miss You” and “You Are Heavenly”

 

PEACH ROSE: These speak of appreciation and gratitude

 

CORAL ROSE: This colour expresses on thing that matches the passionate colour – desire

 

ORANGE ROSE: This colur communicates enthusiasm and desire on the part of the sender

 

WHITE AND YELLOW

 

RED AND YELLOW ROSES: You will be sending a message of happiness and celebration if you choose this combination

 

RED AND WHITE ROSES: When you give this combination of roses, you will be sending the message of bonding and harmony

 

SINGLE RED ROSE: You will like this one: “I love you but I am not going to go broke telling you!”

 

I hope you have enjoyed this information and that it will help you in choosing the roses you will give to your loved one this Valentines Day! Please send in your comments – your input is always welcomed and very much appreciated

 

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All About Amaryllis

December 4, 2013 in Featured Articles

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Amaryllis 001With Christmas just around the corner, it is worthwhile to consider creating beautiful decorations or special gifts using the magnificent Amaryllis.

Amaryllis are big, bold and very easy to grow. And if you don’t want to take a chance on growing your own, you can purchase the blooms from your local flower shop – they will last for about 2 weeks.

Amarylis are truly magnificent – they hold themselves proudly on sturdy stems that are about 18 – 24 inches tall and each stem can produce up to four showy, trumpet-shape blooms and deep red, pink, snow-white or multiple colours.

Amaryllis is a native or Central and South America and once you bring the bulbs home, they will need little encouragement – only a spot where they can shine.Here is what you need to do:

Water well: Allow water to drain through the pot and make sure the water stays below the top of the bulb.

Place the pot in a sunny spot: Water sparingly until a flower spike appears. Soil should be moist but never soggy.

Keep the pot warm: Amaryllis are touchy about cool breezes so you will need to put the pot in a draft-free spot.

Wait patiently: Most Amaryllis will bloom four to six weeks after planting.

Move flowers: Once flowers start to appear, indirect light is best. Snip off flowers as they fade. Cut the stems about an inch for the base after all flowers have bloomed. Strappy leaves grow as the flowering period ends.

If you are thinking about giving Amaryllis as a gift or using it as a decorating item in your home, here are a few ideas:

Amaryllis gift 001

Couple plain containers, pieces of ivy, ribbon and a card -that’s all it will take to create this beautiful hostess gift.

Use old Christmas cards to create an inexpensive and very effective holder - stitch side together with a thin red ribbon or knitting wool, use florist foam inside and insert blooms you have grown! Great gift or your own dinner table centerpiece.

Use old Christmas cards to create an inexpensive and very effective holder – stitch sides together with a thin red ribbon or knitting wool, use florist foam inside and insert blooms you have grown! Great gift or your own dinner table centerpiece.

Amaryllis gift vase

Choose a glass container that will give you the height you prefer, fill with any florist filler, beads or decorative stones (it is a good idea to use a piece of florist foam to secure the stem), tie a festive ribbon around the container – and here you have another hostess gift or a pretty centerpiece.

 

I absolutely love this one! One flat dish, filled with cranberries, one pineapple, carved to allow the insertion of Amaryllis blooms and the addition of little Christmas ornament if you wish - this will definitely be admired, whether you give it as a gift or use it in your Christmas decorations!

I absolutely love this one! One flat dish, filled with cranberries, one pineapple, carved to allow the insertion of Amaryllis blooms and the addition of little Christmas ornament if you wish – this will definitely be admired, whether you give it as a gift or use it in your Christmas decorations!

Candy cane amaryllis 001

Absolutely stunning is all I can say about these blooms! And all you have to do is to add a few little holiday decorating touches to the Amaryllis pot and you will have most admired gift or a decorating item!

Hope you have enjoyed this information – please send me your comments and pictures as well – your input is always welcomed and very much appreciated!

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Edible Cookie Bowl

November 29, 2013 in Recipes

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Edible cookie bowlI found this idea in an old magazine and I really like it so I am sharing it. I am going to make few of these, fill them with homemade baked goodies and what a great Christmas gift that will make!

Edible Cookie Bowl

Ingredients:

  • 1-1/4 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup of blanched, slivered almonds, finely ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 4 tablespoon of butter, softened
  • 2/3 cups of sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • Loaf pan
  • 1-1/2 inch cookie cutter with scalloped edges

Directions:

Making the cookie dough:

  1. Cover the loaf pan with foil and spray with vegetable cooking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, almonds and salt.
  3. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer set on medium, beat butter, sugar, egg and vanilla un til light and fluffy.
  4. Add flour mixture and beat until a dough forms – about 2 minutes.

Shaping the cookie bowl:

Preheat oven to 350F.

Roll dough out to 1/8 thickness.

Using 1-1/2 inch cookie cutter with scalloped edges, cut out shapes.

cookie bowl how to 1

Cover pan with cut outs, overlapping and pressing them slightly.

cookie bowl how to 2

Bake cookie bowl until edges are firm – about 15 minutes.

Transfer pan to wire rack and cool completely.

To remove the cookie bowl., carefully lift off the foil lined pan.

cookie bowl how to 3

Remove foil.

Now you can arrange other homemade goodies in the bowl and cover loosely with plastic wrap until ready to serve or gift.

Note: You can make round cookie bowl by overlapping and molding the cookie dough discs over round bowl. You can use different shaped oven-proof bowl to make a varied selection of cookie bowls.

Freezer options:

Wrap the cooled cookie bowl in an airtight enclosure of plastic wrap; store in the freezer for up to 1 month. Thaw the bowl, wrapped at room temperature for about 30 minutes.

You can also consider baking a few smaller cookie bowls and serving them with ice cream for a fun dessert.

Hope you will enjoy making and giving this wonderful cookie bowl – please send me your comments, your input is always welcomed and very much appreciated!

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How to Make Christmas Stockings

November 20, 2013 in Crafts

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You can make your very own Christmas stockings and add a special touch to each one. Use them to decorate with, fill with treats and give as gifts

Here is a really cute idea! You can easily turn woolen socks into one of a kind Christmas stockings – imagine hanging them on your mantel or accenting your armoire with them. All you have to do is find the woolen stockings you like, and think how you can complement their look. Adding flannel patches, pieces of wool materials, trims, buttons, bells or a fringe will make these your very own. Most items can be stitched on by using a darning needle and narrow ribbon, yarn or cotton. Adding a name is easy as well – here are 3 easy steps for you:

Insert a cardboard liner cut slightly larger than the sock, into the sock before decorating. THe liner will prevent stitching chatching the back of the sock

Stitvh letter, using yearn and back stitches – it may be a good idea to mark your letter on the sock first – easier to keep them the same size

Knot a loop of ribbon through top of sock for a hanger. You can put small treats into your sock or stuff it with a tissue paper or polyester fiberfill if you are using it for a decor.

And here is a very cute idea – making stocking for your four-legged friends and filling them with some treats!

treat your pets this Christmas as well – they know they have been good!

Hope you will enjoy making your own Christmas stockings – please send me your comments, suggestion and experiences – and pictures – your input is very welcomed and much appreciated!

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How to Decorate Your Christmas Wreath

November 19, 2013 in Crafts

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You can go to pretty much any store and buy a very nicely decorated wreath. I checked a few yesterday and every one of them had something I would have done differently for one thing – the other thing is that the cost of decorated wreaths shocked me! You can buy a plain green wreath for under $10 – look at the decorated ones and the price tag jumps up to $40 and up! i actually saw a wreath that was selling for $90 and it didn’t even have lights on it! So – here is a solution:

First – go through your Christmas decorations and pick pieces that you would like to have on your wreath – set them aside. Then – venture out into your local store (Walmart will do nicely and you will save a few bucks too) and buy a plain artificial wreath and a basic set of mini lights if you want to light up your wreath. The alternative is taking a walk a picking up evergreen branches and then making a really nice, natural wreath – I am actually thinking about doing that.

Then sit down with all your stuff and start creating your very own wreath! And do not worry or get discouraged – remember that if you are not happy with what you are doing – just change it!

Wreaths can be embellished to achieve a variety of looks. You can add ribbons, ornaments, floral materials – anything that will reflect your personal style and add to the theme of your home Christmas decor.Artificial evergreen wreaths are very easy to decorate – you just simply twist the branches around each item to secure them – or use floral wire or hot glue to do that.

Start with using one item at a time, spacing them evenly around the wreath to achieve a balanced look. Add the large items first and fill any bare spaces with smaller ones. Secure items at  the surface as well as closer to inside of your wreath – that is to achieve a sense of depth.

And if you are going to put mini lights on – put them on first, light them and work your other items around them – you will be able to see better what the final result will be.

Here are a few ideas for you:

Artificial evergreen garland is wrapped around a grapevine wreath. A natural look is created by adding birch bark and twig birdhouses, artificial birds and stems of rose hips.

Santa’s elf wreath is created by wiring a small elf (or choose another of your liking) figurine to this wreath, creating a focal point. Dried fruit slices, cinnamon sticks and paper twist are added to give this wreath a nice country look

Create this elegant wreath by first attaching a gold wire mesh bow to the top and then adding metal ornaments. This wreath works very well with the addition of mini lights.

Village house becomes the focal point on this wreath. Additional springs of greenery, cones and berries add texture and fullness. For the snowy effect, spray artificial snow over polyester fiberfill

 

I think these are beautiful wreaths and consider this: if you are still thinking about how to decorate your tree – extend the wreath decorating ideas  - they could be easily applied to that task!

Hope you have enjoyed this information, please send in your comments, suggestions and experiences – and pictures as well! – your input is very welcomed and much appreciated!

 

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Homemade Chunky Spiced Applesauce

November 11, 2013 in Recipes

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Chunky apple sauce 001This apple sauce will make a great gift for your friends or family! And since it is an apple season, you can get beautiful apples from your local growers very easily. Use decorative jars and add a little touch of yourself in adding small elements like a nice dishcloth, tied around the top of the jar or a ribbon with a card. I am sure it will be a well received gift!

Homemade Chunky Spiced Applesauce:

Ingredients:

  • 6 medium McIntosh apples
  • 6 medium Granny Smith apples or other tart apples
  • 3 cups of water
  • 1/4 cup of orange juice
  • 1-1/2 cups of sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon.

Directions:

  1. Using apple corer, remove cores from the apples.
  2. Using a vegetable peeler, remove the peel from the apples.
  3. Slice apples and coarsely chop.
  4. In a large pot, combine the chopped apples, water, lemon juice, sugar and cinnamon.
  5. Cover and cook over medium heat until apples are just softened – about 30 minutes.
  6. Using a potato masher, blender or food processor fitted with metal blade, coarsely mash or process apple mixture,.
  7. Cool to room temperature.
  8. Spoon applesauce evenly into prepared jars.
  9. Close jars and decorate as you wish.
  10. Store tightly sealed jars in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
  11. If you want to make this applesauce for later use, use ziplock bags instead of jars and freeze the sauce. When you are ready to fill your jars, take bags from the freezer, defrost the sauce overnight in a refrigerator and fill your jars.

Note:

Use pears instead of apples for a delicious pear sauce. The best pears to substitute for the apples are Bartlett, Bosc or Anjou.

 

Hope you will enjoy this recipe – please send me your comments, suggestions and experiences. Your input is always welcomed and very much appreciated!

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Easy Valentines Day Crafts

February 7, 2013 in Gifts

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valentines dayEvery store I have been in lately has an absolute overload of red and white colours! Oh yes – Valentine’s day is coming soon! I tell you – I look at the prices of some of the items available  and I think : Yes, that is very cute and pretty , but it is also quite likely that it will end up in the trash after the celebration.

I really believe in making things with your own hands, giving some thought to it, getting creative juices running and involving kids in the works . Here is a few I put together for you -  easy to make and you can have fun doing it and mostly – have fun giving the special treats!

Special Red Roses

350x262_foam-rose2_rdax_651

Nothing much says :I love You, then a single red rose! This one is easy to make and when you attach personalized tag to your rose, it can quickly become treasured keepsakes for members of you family!

What You Will Need::

  • Green chenille stems (per flower)
  • Red craft foam
  • Scissors
  • White craft glue or hot glue gun

Directions:

  1. Set aside half the chenille stem for a later step. Take the full chenille stem and bend it in half. Starting at the bent end, twist the chenille stem around itself all the way up. When you reach the end trim it to make it even if needed.
  2. Cut out 1″ tear drop shapes from the red foam, you will need 7 of these.
  3. Cut out ¾” tear drop shapes from the red foam, you will need 3 of these.
  4. Lay a 1″ tear drop on the table, point side down. Glue the open end of the twisted chenille stem to the red tear drop petal.
  5. Glue a second tear drop behind the first tear drop (point side down), most of the tear drop in back will be visible. Repeat on the other side. Repeat again on each side, gluing them in a curved fashion (similar to a half circle). When you are done there should be one petal in the middle and 3 on each side.
  6. Glue one of the smaller tear drop petals on top of the green chenille stem. Glue the other two smaller petals overlapping the first one, point side down.
  7. Once these are all dry, bend and curve the foam petals to join both rounded sides together to form the flower. Glue in place and hold until dry, hot glue comes in handy here.
  8. Use the ½ chenille stem to bend the leaves into shape and twist around the stem.

Friendship Box

350x262_friendship-box1_rdax_651

Sometimes it’s not the actual gift, but the message that it brings that is most cherished. This friendship box is great for showing how much your friends and family mean to you.

What You Will  Need:

  • 1 Empty box, any size
  • Valentine themed wrapping paper or pink/red construction paper
  • Pink construction paper
  • White paper for poem
  • White craft glue
  • White ribbon
  • Scissors

Directions:

  1. Wrap the empty box in wrapping paper or construction paper.
  2. Tie white ribbon around the box and tie into a bow on the top.
  3. Print out the poem below.
  4. Trim the poem and glue the trimmed poem to pink construction paper.
  5. Trim the pink construction paper to give it an even border all the way around.
  6. Glue the poem to the box.

Friendship Box Poem
Inside this fancy little box
I placed a gift so nice
You’ll probably always cherish it
Not even thinking twice

Now even though this box I give
Holds nothing you can touch
I’ve placed inside our friendship
It’s you I like so much!


Soft and Puffy Heart

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Not only can you use this adorable craft to write a special message on the back, it can also be turned into a very special dinner table decoration!

What You Will Need:

  • Pink and white tissue paper, cut into 1″ squares
  • White craft glue
  • Scissors
  • Piece of card stock or construction paper
  • Pencil with an eraser

Directions:

  1. Cut out a heart shape from the construction paper or card stock.
  2. Put white craft glue into the center of the heart, shaped like a heart.
  3. Using the eraser end of a pencil, place the eraser into the center of a white tissue paper square. Twist the tissue paper square around the eraser and dot it onto the glue. Continue this process until entire middle of the heart is covered with white tissue paper. See photo.
  4. Repeat the process from step #3 with pink tissue paper for the border of the heart.
  5. Glue a hanger to the back if you like.

Tips:

  • For younger kids who have trouble working the pencil steps, allow them to wad up the tissue paper squares and press them directly onto the glue with their fingers.
  • Instead of a hanger, try gluing a magnet strip to the back and hang on your fridge!
  • Always saved the tissue paper from birthday gifts for craft projects like these.

 

Lollipop Love

lollipop-card1

This adorable piece will not take you very long to make – engage your children to help and use to send people or use as decorations for your home or your table!

What You Will Need:

  • Pink coloured glitter glue
  • White cardstock
  • 1 wooden skewer
  • Coloured strips of ribbon (2) 1/4″ and (1) 1/8″ wide
  • Large plastic clear crystals
  • Pencil
  • Glue gun
  • Heart-shaped polystyrene/craft foam
  • White glue
  • Scissors

Directions:

Card Template 

  1. Fold white cardstock in half.
  2. Trace polystyrene heart onto cardstock.
  3. Cut out heart leaving a fold line at top of card. Make sure the card heart shape is small enough to fit nicely on the front of the polystyrene heart.

Step 2:  Making the Heart

  1. Glue heart card to front of heart-shaped polystyrene using white glue.
  2. Cover the front and sides of heart-shaped styrofoam with pink glitter glue.
  3. Dip styrofoam heart in a bowl of plastic clear crystals. Let it dry.
  4. Cover back of card with pink glitter glue.
  5. Dip again in clear plastic crystals. Let it dry.

Step 3: Lollipop Stick

  1. Twist and glue one piece of 1/4″x10″ coloured ribbon around stick.
  2. Twist and glue a second piece of 1/8″x10″ coloured ribbon around stick.
  3. Trim off excess ribbon.
  4. Pierce tip of skewer into bottom end of polystyrene heart.
  5. Glue a piece of 1/4″x 7″ribbon end to inside front bottom card.
  6. Glue a piece 1/8″ x 7″ ribbon end to the back inside bottom card.
  7. Tie both ribbons together.
  8. Cut a piece of 1/4″x 15″ ribbon.
  9. Tie a bow around the base of heart.

Key to Your Heart

key-to-my-heart-card

One of my personal favourites and again – your creativity will make it special!

 

What You Will Need:

  • Design cardstock
  • 1/4″ x 20″ cream-colored ribbon
  • Antique key
  • Medium-sized pearl
  • 6 small rhinestones
  • Gold thread
  • Glue gun
  • Hole puncher
  • Velvet fabric
  • Fabric filler
  • Cardboard
  • Watered down glue
  • Small paint brush

Directions:

Step 1:   Card Template 

  1. Cut out two  5″ x 7″ rectangles with design cardstock.
  2. Cut out a 2 ½” heart from cardboard.
  3. Cut out 3 ½” heart from fabric.

Step 2:  Heart pillow

  1. Wrap heart-shaped fabric around cardboard heart.
  2. Glue fabric to back of cardboard heart with glue gun.
  3. Leave 1 ½” on one side of heart unglued.
  4. Stuff heart with small amount of fabric filler.
  5. Glue open seam on back of heart closed.
  6. Tie a small bow with 1/4″ ribbon.
  7. Glue bow to top of heart with glue gun.
  8. Glue medium sized pearl below the center of the bow with glue gun.

Step 3:  Key

  1. Tie gold thread to the key. Cut thread.
  2. Glue the free end of the gold thread on the backside of the padded heart.

Step 4:  Card

  1. Place the 5″ x 7″ rectangles of cardstock together to make the card. Make sure the design side is visible on both sides.
  2. Punch (7) even-spaced holes along left edge of card with hole puncher.
  3. Lace 1/4″ ribbon through each hole from top to bottom and back to top
  4. Glue ribbon ends on inside of card at top.
  5. Glue padded heart on front center at 1 ½” from top of card with glue gun.
  6. Glue rhinestones to the front of card with watered down glue

Enjoy making these pretty keepsakes and please send in your comments, suggestions and ideas. Your input is always welcomed and very much appreciated!

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Valentines Day Gift Ideas for Men

January 26, 2011 in Gifts

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When you think about it – it is easier for guys to pick up a Valentines Day gift for their loved ones. Who doesn’t like beautiful long stem roses…. Or a box of exclusive Belgium truffles? I know – I should be encouraging men to get more creative, more original, but I decided to help the ladies with sparking a bit of creativity this time.

Here are a few ideas that are easy to make, are quite inexpensive and definitely are a bit different:

I Am Nuts About You:

You can add a card with this statement to this gift – in your handwriting of course! Just get a nice jar or a gift box, fill it with his favourite nuts and there you go – how easy was that? Personally, I would use chocolate covered almonds, they are my husband’s favourite, but you can use any nuts or a nut mixture.

Love You To Pieces:

How about getting a large print of a photo of the two of you and cutting it into a puzzle? You can then put the pieces into a nice little gift box, put a fancy ribbon on it and you will have a gift that he will remember for a long time

You Complete Me:

We all know that famous line from Jerry McGuire – it really stuck ion many, many minds and is no doubt being used over and over. But – borrow the idea from above gift and same as in Love You To Pieces, grab your favourite picture, get a large print – and you can even add the statement into the picture. Then cut into puzzle pieces, break the pieces into a gift box, adorn with a gift ribbon and you have yet another creative gift for him!

If you don’t feel like either one of the above suggestions are good for what you would like to give, here is a list of the most popular Valentines Day gifts for a man:

  1. Chocolates – apparently because they are a noncommittal gift. It should be a good quality box of chocolates and if you are not sure about what kind of chocolates, get the assorted ones.
  2. Dog Treats – if there is four legged buddy in the picture, why not get a nice box of healthy treats? Just make sure he doesn’t think they are cookies for him…..
  3. Flowers – personally, I don’t see anything wrong with giving guy flowers – they shouldn’t be roses, but how about a nice exotic flowering orchids or a bunch of fragrant gardenias?
  4. A Pendant  – it could be a heart shaped one and doesn’t have to be gold. If it has your initial in it….that much nicer!
  5. Hand-dipped strawberries – and I don’t have to tell you that the way to give them would be to feed them to him along with offering sips of champagne – now that is a pretty romantic move!
  6. Probably the best one and one of my favourite ones – Bed and Breakfast Getaway is great for both of you. Offering a mix of comfort and luxury, lot of destination will offer specials and special treats for Valentines Day.

Hope these ideas will help you find that perfect Valentines Day gift for him – please send in your comments and experiences, your input is always welcomed and very much appreciated

 

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How to Plan Valentine’s Day Party

February 5, 2010 in Featured Articles

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Valentine’s Day is the occasion to have some fun with your friends, close ones and the love of your life. Check out some exciting tips to arrange a perfect Valentine’s Day Party:

Invitations:
First – make a list of people who you want to invite for your Valentine’s Day party. Send out cards to the intended guests in the shape of a heart or cupid, or with the shape of a heart on the front. It’s even better if you can make some invitation cards yourself for your Valentine’s Day party. You can make them quite attractive by designing them with pictures of famous lovers and putting in some famous love quotes. Tie each card with a red satin ribbon, put inside a small red box filled with candies and stick an invitation note to it. If at all possible, deliver your invites personally. If you are going to mail your invitations, allow extra time for postal delivery – either way you do it, you guests should receive their invites no later than 2 weeks prior to the party.

The Place:
Where you hold your Valentine’s Day Party depends as much on you as on your guests. You can throw a party at your house, provided your celebrations are a family affair and you have the confidence that you can make all the necessary arrangements for it. If you want to make it a little bit different, you can invite your sweetheart/friends to a play at the theatre nearest to your home and have a little get-together before or after. You can also arrange a picnic on the lines of a camp at some good location, one that is safe and nice to spend time at. Getting creative and making a memorable event where everyone is comfortable and having fun is the key.

Decorations:
That depends mostly on the nature of your celebration. If you’re planning a special Valentine’s Day evening for you and your honey, a handful of candles and a bouquet of red roses are enough to set the mood. But if you’re throwing a Valentine’s Day celebration for your friends and family, your will need a good theme and appropriate decorations. Proper decorations go a long way to set the mood for a party and make it an outstanding one. You need to decorate your house according to the theme of the party. You can place heart shaped candle stands and flower vases at different corners and windows.

Decorate the ceilings by hanging heart shape balloons, cupids and paper hearts made of yarn, string or streamers. Red, pink, purple and white are the traditional Valentine’s Day colors. Cut paper hearts of various sizes from construction papers and write messages like “Be Mine”, “My Love” or “I Love You” on them. Add some sequins for that extra colour and sparkle. Scatter the cutouts randomly over tabletops and beds. Cover your table with a white table cloth or sheet and put little candy hearts at one side of the table. These will be your party favours. Fill candy bowls, champagne flutes and martini glasses with colourful treats. And for a special little touch, place a Happy Valentine’s Day banner on the main door.

You can also buy some of vintage Valentine’s Day cards and stand them up across a fireplace mantle or on your drawing room table, or tape them to the bathroom mirror. And last but not the least, to really complete the theme, place a statuette or cardboard cutout of arrow-toting Cupid on your dining table. No Valentine’s Day party is complete without this item. To add to the mood of your party, play some nice romantic songs and spark the mood for romance. Prepare garlands of valentine flowers and place them all over – and your entire home will be saying: “Happy Valentine’s Day”

The Ambiance:
Creating the right ambience for your party is very important – that is what will make the time a memorable one. Dress up your party zone according to the theme of the party. Choose your bed sheets, table covers and curtains in colours like red or pink that goes with the mood of Valentine’s Day. If you are having a private romantic evening with your sweetheart, plan to get some special movie to watch – or select some romantic music to set the mood. If you want to celebrate the time with your friends and family members, groovy numbers or dance tracks will be the best. Make sure, however, that the music for your party suits the taste and preferences of your guests.

The Food:
You will never go wrong if you think hard about pleasing the tastebuds of your guests so what you will select to prepare and serve at your party is an important factor. If you prefer – you could organize a get-together with your friends and family, select your favourite restaurant to meet up with your them and order what you enjoy the best. If you are planning a party in your home, write out the names of your intended guests and think about the selection of foods you will need to prepare based on what you know about them. If your guest list includes vegetarians, make adequate provisions for them. If you want to restrict the celebrations to yourself and your sweetheart, go in for a romantic candlelight dinner. For desserts, chocolate recipes like chocolate-covered strawberries, chocolate truffles, chocolate fondue or chocolate heart-shaped cookies are just great.

The Party Favours
It is always nice to send your guests home with a small gift or party favour. It ends the festivities on a sweet note and keeps the memory of the party alive for your invited ones. These party favours can range from little candy hearts and chocolates to small cupid dolls. Purchase heart shaped boxes to pack sweet treats and heart-shaped chocolates for your guests to take home. It is a good idea to match the party favours to the theme of your party.

Hope these tips were helpful to you – please send in your comments, suggestions and experiences! You input is always very much appreciated!

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