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Natural Thanksgiving Decor

Posted on October 3, 2017 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (0)



Thanksgiving is just a few days away and if you haven't succumbed to buying faux decorations at the dollar store, fear not. I have a few ideas that make use of nature's freebies. For example, the basket above makes for a great centrepiece or hall table decoration. It's easily made by simply winding together vines. I have a neighbour who cuts down his vines at this time of year and I always get some for decorating purposes. This year a friend of mine put the basket together. He used a wire coat hanger to create frame for the bottom 'wreath' and then built up the handles freestyle. Cost? Just a couple of hours creating.



Something to dress up the back yard. I don't recall the name of this plant - they look a little like tiny pumpkins. I simply plunked a bunch of these twigs into one ofmy vintage sap buckets et voila. 



Light up your hallway table, dinner table or mantel with this garland. String Chinese Lanterns seed pods (Physalis) into garlands instead of traditional autumn leaves. Simple insert a light bulb of string lighting into each lantern and you're done.


They last a long time and work both for Halloween and Thanksgiving.


Your welcome. 

Father's Day - Let's Recycle!

Posted on June 17, 2017 at 9:50 AM Comments comments (0)



This is what the fathers we know will be wearing this Sunday on Father's Day: bow ties made by recycling old comic books! I bought the comic books at a local school book sale for under $1 for 3 and decided these would be perfect for a Father's Day project for my after school club kiddies. I created a template they could cut out and use to create the bow ties. Since a few of the kiddies haven't got Dads, I suggested these could also make great hair bows.


To hold the finished bow ties in place, we used plastic paper clips a friend gave me to recycle (thanks, Sean!!). We had a great time and to finish off, the kids each designed and made a card to go along with the bow/hair tie. These bow/hair ties only take minutes to make so are great last minute projects.


For a paper template, click here.


If bow ties aren't your thing, you can find a few ideas from my past posts. Click here.


Still not impressed, enter Father's Day Crafts in your search engine box and you'll find oodles of stuff.


Happy Dad's Day and remember, it isn't all about stuff. Spending time just goofing off or doing chores together is a great way to celebrate with day.

DIY Mother's Day

Posted on May 10, 2017 at 10:10 AM Comments comments (0)

Eh gads and zuts alor! - it's Thursday and I haven't posted anything for our Mother's Day. I hope you've been giving some thought to what you can make for your Mom. Your recycling bin, believe or not, is full of great possibilities for repurposing containers, etc. and to help you along, here are a few ideas for you.


CARDS FROM MAGAZINES, JUNK MAIL, ETC.



These cards are so easy to do and all you will need are some junk mail, magazine, gardening catalog, etc, some brown paper (I used a brown paper grocery bag - but use what you have), thin cardboard (cereal box, etc) and a bit of ribbon (leftover from other occasions). If you are artistic, you could draw flowers but, as I'm not, I roughly clipped out pictures from a gardening catalog and glued these to some cardboard before cutting these out so they looked like flowers.


Here's what I did: I cut two pieces of brown paper in the shape of a flower pot - one for the back and one for the front. Fold the top of each part over so it looks like a flower pot, then glue these two together at the bottom and sides, leaving the top wider part open. Then I cut a cardboard insert in the same shape but slightly smaller and glued the flowers to this. Then I inserted the flowers into the pot, glued on a ribbon tied into a bow in front and voila a nice Mom's day card was born!


MORE MAGAZINE RECYCLING FOR MOM - LET HER HAVE CAKE!



If your Mom loves cake but you don't have the time or inclination (or like me, no ability) to bake one yourself, head for your grocery store and buy a plain iced cake. When you bring the cake home, style it up with a couple of flowers (fake or real) and some butterflies cut out of magazine pages. Stick the whole thing on a pretty plate and wait for the compliments.


Click here for a butterfly template.


GIFT WRAP LEFTOVERS - FLOWER VASE



You don't have to break the bank to present a nice bouquet of flowers to Mom. Heck, you can raid your garden and clip a few from there. Grocery store flowers aren't too expensive and you can separate the flowers to make a couple of bouquets. To make the cone, use gift wrap or scrapbooking paper if you have it. Or you're a little artist, why not make a nice drawing on plain paper and use this as the cone wrap.


Here's a cone template for you.


Before sticking the flowers into your vase cone, insert the flowers into a plastic sandwich bag so water doesn't seep out. You want them to stay fresh for at least a couple of days, no?


REUSING EGG CARTONS - FOR MOM'S BATH BOMBS




Bath bombs are so easy to make that I wondered why I hadn't attempted these before. But I couldn't think of a way of packaging mine until I raided my recycling bin. I found and reused plastic eggshells from Easter as moulds to make the bath bombs and it was a no brainer to use the papier mache egg cartons (also from my recycling bin) as the bath bomb containers .


For a bath bomb how to, click here.


RECYCLING VINTAGE BAKEWARE - JUST HANG IT!



If Mom's a whiz in the kitchen why not raid her bakeware and see if you can find a few spare pie plates or tart pans to create some kitchen wall art for her. Write or print out some of her favourite baking recipes and cut out to fit inside the plates or pans, use double-sided tape to hold the recipes in place and hang the how thing up. Several would look spectacular.


I found the ones shown here.


FINAL WORD


Okay, we've got cards, cake, flowers and some wall art for Mom. I think she'll be pleased and you haven't emptied your wallet completely and even did some good for the environment, too. Hurrah!

Happy Easter

Posted on April 13, 2017 at 9:40 AM Comments comments (0)



I found a copy of Douglas Gayeton's book, Slow: Life in a Tuscan Town, at a local church charity shop and just love it - the photographs and the story behind them. I think the cover (I removed the dust jacket) is an appropriate image for Easter. As symbols, eggs have many meanings: for Christians, eggs symbolize the resurrection of Christ; for kids, goodie treats; and for the rest of us, spring and new beginnings.


I also think eggs are the perfect food: you can prepare them in an infinite number of ways (where would I be without my morning soft-boiled egg and toasty soldiers) in baking and cooking. Eggs are also used cosmetically, for examples, in facials and for healthy hair growth. And THEN, you can repurpose the shells in hundreds of ways in crafts (crafters can use crushed eggshells as tiny mosiacs for decorations), the kitchen, garden, etc., as well. Perfect, indeed.


Gayeton is a filmmaker who began recording foodway traditions in the Tuscan town of Pistoia, Italy for a project he was doing with PBS. While most Pistorians had never heard of the slow food movement, Gayeton realized that they were in fact exemplars of the movement's basic principles. So he focused his camera on his friends and neighbors, discovering many stories along the way and this book was the result.


To find out more about Gayeton and his work, go here and here


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