Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Blog Under Renovation

Free Clipart from Clipartheaven

This site is currently being renovated to reflect our new Etsy store site and will be up and running soon.  Thank you for your patience during this time.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Tutorial: Glittery Cupcakes and Snowball Ornaments

Take a look at these great ornaments!  They are very easy to make.  Kids, large and small, can get involved.  There are lots of kid-friendly crafts over at Fuzzy Sheep Crafts. 

The basic tutorial teaches you how to make these great sparkly snowballs.

Build upon that lesson to make the cupcakes which are featured in the first picture above.

  1. Styrofoam balls (any size desired, these were 4”)
  2. White glue
  3. SnowFlakes (found at Michaels for about $3 a bag)
  4. Chopsticks
  5. Thin ribbon to hang ornament
  6. Clear Coat Spray
  7. Hot Glue
Step 1: Gently press a chopstick into each ball to serve as a handle.  Paint your ball with a good thick coat of the white glue.  The more the better as the glue soaks into the ball.  Because the ball is white, and the snow is what, if you miss a spot or two don’t worry.

Step 2: Now for the messy/fun part!  Dip your ball into the snow flakes and coat everything.  Use your hands to press and smoosh the flakes into the glue.  This helps things adhere and means less flaking off later. Once everything is well coated, allow to dry for an hour or two.  I found it worked well if you just stood the chopstick up in a hefty coffee mug.

Step 3: Once everything is dry, give a quick and thin spray of some clear coat. This step isn’t completely necessary, but I did it to help prevent flake-off, my grudge against anything glittered. Allow the snow balls to dry again, for at least an hour. Do this in a well ventilated area, trust me.

Step 4: Once dry again, pull your chopstick out.  Fill that hole with hot glue and use your chopstick to help you push the ends of a length of ribbon in to hang your snowball from.  Allow to set and hang on your try for a sparkly Melt Free Snowball for your Christmas tree.

That's it!

Now, to turn them into Glittery Cupcakes, do this instead:

Extra Supplies:
  1. Styrofoam balls (2 1/2”)
  2. Red christmas berry pick
  3. Red tin foil cupcake liners
  4. Beads to simulate sprinkles

Step 1: Coat/cover/spray your snowballs as indicated above.  The only difference is that you only need to cover the top portion of the ball, maybe just over a half.

Step 2: Once everything is dry, run a bead of hot glue along the inside edge of a cupcake liner.  Carefully press your liner around the uncovered part of your snowball.  I tried more white glue, but that didn’t work.  Hot glue is my duct tape!  Fixes everything.

Step 3: Once everything is set, snip a berry from your pick, being sure to leave enough wire to stab into the snowball.  Use this wire to poke through the center of the ribbon you’ll use for your hanger.  Add a dab of hot glue to hold everything together.

Step 4: Use the wire again to poke the cherry into the cupcake.  If you want to make sure it’ll really stay, run a dab of hotglue along the wire just before poking it in.

Step 5: Add a few dabs of white glue here and there, and toss on a few beads to simulate sprinkles for extra cuteness.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Thanksgving Trivia

Here are some fun trivia facts about Thanksgiving found on Thanksgiving 2010. 

Thanksgiving wasn’t considered a national holiday until 1863 when President Abraham Lincoln released a proclamation, officially establishing the last Thursday in November as Thanksgiving. The Thanksgiving holiday was later moved to the fourth Thursday in November by President Franklin Roosevelt to extend the Christmas shopping season and improve the economy.

Canadians also celebrate Thanksgiving; however theirs is on the 2nd Monday in October.

Benjamin Franklin argued that the turkey, and not the bald eagle, should be the national symbol of America. He claimed that the “vain and silly” turkey was a far better choice than the bald eagle, which he thought was a “coward.”

Even though they are generally seen as large and ungainly, turkeys:
  • Can fly up to 55 MPH over short distances
  • Run up to 25 MPH on the ground 
  • Have excellent hearing but no ears 
  • Have a poor sense of smell
  • Can see in color
  • Have a 270 degree field of vision, making them difficult to sneak up on
  • Sometimes sleep in trees

 Over 45 million turkeys are prepared and eaten in the United States for Thanksgiving each year.

The five most popular ways to eat the leftover turkey from Thanksgiving includes: soups or stews, sandwiches, casseroles, stir-fries and salads.

Age does matter. Older male turkeys are generally considered to be tastier than young males (stringy) or females (tough).

Young turkeys have a number of unfortunate names including “fryer” when they are less than 16 weeks old, and “roaster” when they are between 5 and 7 months old.

Only male “Tom” turkeys gobble, and they can be heard a mile away; the females only cluck or click.

The “Turkey Trot” dance was named after the short, jerky steps that turkeys make.

The Native Americans called turkeys “firkees,” which some believe to be the origin of the word. However, when turkeys are spooked they make a “turk turk turk” sound, which is where the name likely originates.

Turkeys may “gobble gobble” in English, but in Portuguese they say “Gluglu gluglu."

There are another 80 more interesting facts you can find at Brownie Locks.. I tried to copy and paste them here for your convenience but was unable to do so. When you visit that site, just place your cursor over the turkey to see the answer.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Halloween Trivia

Here are some fun facts from The Halloween Website.

Halloween was originally a Celtic holiday celebrated on October 31.

Halloween was brought to North America by European immigrants who celebrated the harvest around a bonfire, share ghost stories, sing, dance and tell fortunes.

Orange and black are Halloween colors because orange is associated with the Fall harvest and black is associated with darkness and death.

According to folklore, the jack-o-lantern got his name from a man named Jack.

Jack o lanterns originated in Ireland where people placed candles in hollowed-out turnips to keep away spirits and ghosts on the Samhain holiday.

Mexico celebrates 'The Day of the Dead' instead of Halloween.

Pumpkins also come in white, blue and green. Great for unique monster carvings!

Pumpkins originated in Central America. When Europeans arrived in the New World, they found pumpkins plentiful and used in cooking by Native Americans. They took seeds back to Europe where they quickly became popular.

Growing big pumpkins is a big time hobby. Top prize money for the biggest giant pumpkin is as much as $25,000 dollars at fall festivals.

A pumpkin is a berry in the cucurbitaceae family, which also includes melons, cucumbers, squash and gourds. All these plants are native to the Americas.

Halloween is the 2nd most commercially successful holiday, with Christmas being the first. People spend as much as over $2.5 billion during Halloween on candies, costumes, decorations and parties.

It is believed that the Irish began the tradition of Trick or Treating. In preparation for All Hallow's Eve, Irish townsfolk would visit neighbors and ask for contributions of food for a feast in the town.

The ancient Celts thought that spirits and ghosts roamed the countryside on Halloween night. They began wearing masks and costumes to avoid being recognized as human.

Samhainophobia is an intense fear of Halloween.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

sPoOkY Halloween Specimen Jars

There are soooo many wonderful ideas you can find on Martha Stewart's Halloween Central.  My favorite section is the "Decorations and Crafts" tab.  This project really stood out.  It's called Specimen Jars.   It's very easy and makes a big impression, with glowing lights and smoke created from dry ice! Adults and kids alike will love this!  There is even a video available to watch her complete it step-by-step, which is better than the written instructions.  Click on Specimen Jars to see all the fun!   You can also use the little plastic animals found in dollar or craft stores in place of teeth and eyes found in costume and party stores. 

Take it further.  Customize this project for each season or holiday to make wonderful paperweights.  It will act as a home decor item with a practical use.