Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

We've been having lots of fun this Halloween season at our houses!

Wishing you a Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Honeybee Printables

Remember this adorable birthday party that Jaime threw for her little girl?
Well I thought it seemed silly to do all the work of designing the invites, tags, banner... and not use them again. So I'm sharing with all of you!
Honey Bee Printables!
All I ask in return is that you leave me a comment.
Easy right? It would be nice of you to follow too :)

So here we go. All documents will print on 8 1/2 x 11 sheets
Just type you own info on the invites or blank circles.

2 invites, 4x6 inches
12, 2 inch circles

6, 2.5 inch circles

8, 2x3 inch cards
3, 3x6 inch cards

Honey Labels
12, 1.5 inch Circles

Honey Bee Birthday Banner
3.5 inch circles

I was recently asked to create a banner for a gender reveal baby shower with a "What will it be?" theme. What a fun idea! I added it onto this post so you can all enjoy :)


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Scrabble Coasters

One of my dear friends recently had a birthday party. I wanted to give her something simple and not over the top yet also said I cared. Something handmade, something fun, something she wanted. So, I made her some Scrabble coasters. :)

Probably not everyone would enjoy Scrabble coasters, but I knew she would--I searched through her Pinterest and found some things she had pinned and made a list of ideas from that, a list which included Scrabble coasters. In the end, I thought these coasers would be the most fun, so I took a trip to the thrift store and got lucky--they had Scrabble. :)

To make them, I just cut the scrabble board to be a little smaller than 5 x 5 Scrabble tiles and then used E6000 glue to adhere the tile pieces to the board. It was quick and easy and cute and thoughtful. Perfect.

It's that time of year again when everyone is thinking of gift giving.... I wish you well in trying to find meaningful gifts for everyone on your list. We'll have lots of good ideas coming your way.

Happy gift giving....

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Fall Boredom Busters

Today we have an inspirational guest post with ideas for great fall fun with your kids. You'll love these ideas! We think fall is a wonderful time of year and these tips will be sure to make it even more memorable and enjoyable for you and your kids.
A special thanks to Emily Patterson of Primrose Schools for her great article. :)

Is there anything worse than a chilly, crisp autumn day on which your children stay indoors because you did not plan any activities?
Many parents have problems when their children tell them they feel bored on a sunny day that offers so many interesting things to do. It is highly probable that your children are sure to make remarks regarding boredom at least one time during the approaching fall season. Research indicates that children only retain up to 40 percent of the topics they study in the classroom, unless their brains receive proper inspiration. The way to overcome boredom and loss of knowledge during the autumn season is to promote games and recreation, and create a strategy that keeps your children occupied when the season changes from summer to fall.
The concept of keeping your children’s brains engaged during the autumn months is an essential idea, but the realization of this philosophy does not need to cost a great deal of money, nor does it require an expensive trip in order to spark their interest. The ability to imagine different things and situations does not cost any money. Autumn is a wonderful season in which you can influence your children to set their imaginations free. During the time that your children attend school, classroom agendas tend to take up a lot of time for structured activities, and extra time for creative pursuits are not as frequent. The fall months give your children opportunities to engage in creative activities without interruptions. This gives your children the chance to invent their own creative projects.
Use the following 10 ideas to energize the minds of your children during the autumn months:

1. Create a Boredom Buster jar: When fall first approaches, get together with your children, and spontaneously think of different activities they want to do by themselves and activities they want to do with you. Ask your children to volunteer their own unique thoughts, and ask them to assist you in the creation of a jar called the Boredom Buster jar. They are sure to feel as though they are part of the project, and appreciate the idea, if they have opportunities to offer their own inventive perspectives. Next, record each person’s concepts on pieces of paper, and have the family make a decision as to which papers go in the jar and which papers do not go in the jar. Anytime a person in the family feels bored, he or she simply reaches into the jar and grabs one of the pieces of paper, and the written suggestion conquers the autumn boredom blues.

2. Make stories seem real: Even though reading seems as though it is a simple idea, it is a significant way to help stimulate your children’s minds during the autumn season. Stories cause more enjoyment when they seem real, so try to find ways that make them seem authentic. For instance, in the book Roxaboxen, by Alice McLerran, children invent a town that is not real. They create this town, located in the desert, from rocks, boxes and their own inventive minds. Read this book to your children, and then encourage them to invent their own towns with available items in your backyard.

3. The art of raking leaves: Children love to rake leaves outdoors during the autumn months. The different shades of red, orange and yellow strewn all over the grass offers their minds artistic insights, and the act of raking leaves challenges them to learn how to organize and make things look tidy. Some children thoroughly enjoy raking leaves, and they not only rake them, but also toss them about in the air. Raking leaves is a fun activity that also enables your children to spend a lot of time outdoors.
4. Go for a bike ride: Although going for a bike ride may sound simplistic, children love riding their bicycles, and the cool, clear fall days during the autumn season provide them with perfect bike riding weather. Physical exercise also stimulates the mind, and simple bike rides give your children new creative thoughts the next morning.
5. Apple picking: Plan a family outing to a local apple orchard and let your children experience the thrill of picking their own apples fresh from the apple trees. Apple picking also provides them with a good way to learn about the different varieties of apples and the various ways that different apples taste. You can teach them how to make homemade applesauce or apple butter when you bring home the colorful apples. Perhaps you want to show them how to make a delectable apple pie. Apple picking inspires all sorts of creative activities.
6. Teach your children how to make a pumpkin pie: Pumpkins and squashes love to grow during the autumn season, and this is a good time to teach your children the secret art of how to make a delicious pumpkin pie. Your children are sure to feel as though they are professional bakers when Thanksgiving rolls along, and you then have the advantage of receiving extra help when you prepare your Thanksgiving dinner.
7. Listening game: Sit down in your backyard, on your patio or at a local park and listen to all of the sounds. Ask your children what they hear and ask them if they hear the same sounds. Ask them if they want to try to imitate the sound of a bird or a dog. This game teaches your children to take some time out and pay attention to sounds they normally ignore.
8. Do a fun fall craft: Anything from painting pictures of pumpkins to making collages out of leaves will stimulate your kids' imaginations. They'll be sure to love their masterpieces.
9. Camp out in your backyard: Pack a picnic basket filled with goodies, and camp out in your backyard on a sunny, fall afternoon. Do not feel surprised if your children beg you to camp out all night.

10. Build a fort: While you are camping out, help your children to build a fort. Utilize all sorts of household and backyard items to build a strong, private fort. Use the Boredom Buster jar as a reference, and then continue to add new fall activities to the list. When children participate in creative activities during the autumn months, they develop greater self-determination, soaring imaginations and creative thoughts. Make sure you challenge your children’s minds, but keep the challenges at their levels of learning. Now that you have a few ideas to work with, spend some time with your children this fall, and help them to experience an intriguing, creative and enjoyable autumn season.

Thanks again Emily Patterson for those great ideas. Head on over to Primrose Schools and check out their website--you won't regret it.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Halloween Mantel

This is my first time having a mantel to decorate for the holidays, and I must say it has been a lot of fun. Here is my Halloween mantel:

For some reason this year I am really into Edgar Allen Poe and The Raven, so I knew for sure I wanted a raven. After much searching, I found one at Michaels, and, lucky me, it was 50% off. :) I also got the skull there.

My kids especially like the spider web and little spiders. In fact, you can find wads of the web taped to the wall throughout the house--apparently they are spider egg sacs.... If asked whether or not they are creepy, make sure and respond, "VERY creepy." Bonus points for you if you also respond that they "give you the chills."

Happy Halloween decorating!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Halloween Book Wreath

Today I completed my Halloween wreath, and I'm loving it!

Yes, those are book pages. Yes, I destroyed an old book in the process of making this wreath, which I feel a tiny bit bad about, BUUUTTTT I think it looks great, and it was an old book no one was reading anyway. :)
I first got this idea from Heidi at Vacuuming in High Heels and Pearls, and loved the potential.

So I gathered by supplies:
a wreath frame ($1 at the dollar store)
an old book (thanks mom)
and  a glue gun

I started carefully ripping out the pages of the book. I took each page indivdually and krinkled it up with the middle poking down and the edges all poking up.

Applied some hot glue onto what used to be the middle of the page...

...and stuck it onto the wreath frame. Easy peasy.

After the whole wreath was filled, I cut out some bat silhouettes and used the hot glue gun to apply them to the wreath.

Love it. Hope you are having fun preparing for Halloween?!

Here's where we are linking up.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Halloween Treats!

Every year our neighborhood has a fantastic Halloween party for the little kids. We usually  have the party during the day, sometimes with lunch. Everyone pitches in and brings what they can, the kids (and the cool moms) wear their costumes and everyone has a blast! 
Before its too late, I thought I'd share some sweet Halloween treats from last years party!
*I didn't make all of these- other wonderful and talented friend brought most of them*

First off- Marshmallow Pretzel Spiders
Stick pretzels in a large marshmallow (like legs), dip the whole thing in chocolate and add mini M&M eyes.

Skull Cookies
Your favorite sugar cookies sanded with white sugar (she had a skull cookie cutter)

Goldfish & Pretzels
Two of the toddlers' favorites as a fun black and orange mix!

Witch Hats
A grasshopper (chocolate mint) cookie with a dab of colored frosting and a hershey's kiss on top.

Brownie Owls
Mini brownies with white frosting holding on mini M&M eyes and candy corn beaks.

Pizza Snakes
Make your favorite pizza dough, roll the dough into a large rectangle and add toppings. Then roll back up cinnamon roll style. Stripe with colored egge wash. Bake at 350* for 30 minutes (or until done). Add black olive eyes and a pepperoni tongue. Slice and eat!

I can't wait to see what we have this year!
We'd love to see some of your Halloween treat ideas too- send them our way!