Showing posts with label 2020. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 2020. Show all posts

Simple, Stylish Paint Chip Christmas Tree Toddler + Kid Craft

 

 


The holidays are right around the corner and we are super excited about all the fun that involves... this year is going to be one of the best. I haven't share this yet, but we have family surprising Delainey with a long visit over the holidays so it's hard not to be stoked. Also, I'm pretty amped to see her face on Christmas morning, because I may have spoiled my sweet girl. Beyond that, the Christmas spirit is in full swing in our home - with our little Elf causing trouble and the sweet innocence of writing letters to Santa, I'm going to go ahead and call it, Christmas is truly the most wonderful time of the year!

With that said, we've been trying to keep busy lately as we countdown the days until Christmas and this super simple and FREE Paint Chip Christmas Tree Craft was the perfect way to keep our minds occupied while creating a masterpiece. It was also a great way to practice cutting and gluing skills and to encourage her to discuss colors and shapes.

I also loved that we were able to make our tree anything but green. She's been stuck on trees only being green and it was good to encourage her imagination and mix up colors!

Have a little crafter on your hands? Love the look of our simple paint chip trees? Want to make one of your own? Here ya go!





We grabbed our paint chips for an upcoming rainbow mural project in her room from our local hardware store and well, we decided to use them craft-ily as well once this idea came to mind.

You'll start by cutting off both ends with writing on them and start making staggered cuts with the remainder of the paint chip. Allowing for both big and small pieces, thick and thin,etc.

Now, once you have a ton of colors cut up and lots of variety in the shapes of your pieces, apply glue to your white paper in the shop of a tree, if you'd like you can top your tree with a star or a funky shaped cut.



It's that easy. Now just let it dry & hang it up! I plan on sticking these in shadow box frames and setting it out each year. I love looking back at our crafts year after year and admiring each piece, it's a little bit of nostalgia that I'll always be thankful for.

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The HONEST Truth about Sleep Number Beds - Sleep Number p5 Mattress Review




Did you know we actually WON a Sleep Number bed?


We did... and I was legit so excited! I won the Sleep Number p5 Mattress on twitter, craziest thing - I tweeted once in favor of a blog network that I adore and next thing I knew we were the proud owners of a fancy new bed!  We went to the store, we learned about our new bed, they came and installed it, the whole shebang! While I was SUPER thankful to have the opportunity to have such an expensive item, I learned from this lesson that the price of something absolutely does not make it a nicer product.

That's right, I'm dishing the dirt on our Sleep Number today and filling y'all in on the facts. We had a P5 delivered in 2016 and while it seemed cool to have such a fancy, adjustable bed at first - we soon discovered we aren't Sleep Number people. I like a bed to be soft yet firm, cozy yet sturdy. Our sleep number was best described as hard and uncomfortable when fully inflated or too soft and mushy when we lowered our sleep number. It's known as their most popular bed and it it supposed to offer body-contouring and sleep-enhancing benefits, but it simply does not feel good.

If you've ever been on a Sleep Number bed, you know there's a remote and you can adjust your settings. So I tried it all, numbers all over the place. There truly wasn't a comfortable number for me. I would wake up sore and still tired a lot, all from sleepless nights on our new mattress.

Not only was it uncomfortable, it was inconvenient. With the remotes, we were able to adjust our sleep number... but it really wasn't the easiest. You have to re-inflate regularly, then reset to your preferred setting when coming to bed. It wasn't anything to truly complain about but... when you can just get in bed and get cozy with almost any other mattress, why inconvenience yourself with another gadget to fiddle with before bed?

Like I said, I'm truly thankful to have won the bed... what a cool experience and a BIG win, but I thought I'd share our personal experience with Sleep Number and let you know that maybe it simply isn't worth the price for some. I tried for years to just deal with the bed, but finally decided to literally just toss it in the trash at the beginning of the pandemic.

With that said, we switched BACK to our Eve mattress that I was sent years ago for a blog campaign. They aren't sponsoring this post in any way now, but it is seriously a heavenly mattress - I highly recommend you looking into them if you are in the market for a mattress that'll blow your mind and offer that cozy, comfort we all want!


10 EPIC IKEA FINDS FOR $10 & UNDER

Growing up means I'm obsessing over wall colors and collecting home decor more and more. I can often be caught daydreaming about owning a white couch or sometimes I'll be off in Amazon-land collecting things I'd like to add to my knick-knack shelf in my cart to "save for later".

TROMMA Wall clock, white, 9 ¾ "

If you're also like me and clean, cutely decorated pinterest-styled-homes obsessed, then this little list of amazing IKEA finds for under $10 is right up your alley - and get this, you can buy a few of these items for each person on your shopping list this holiday and it won't break the bank!

So let's get this party started!

10 EPIC IKEA FINDS FOR $10 & UNDER




1. MULA AbacusOne yellow, three greens and two blue ones.  Help your kiddo develop critical thinking and logical skills with this nifty little old-fashioned bit of a rainbow. In-stores for just $9.99!

 
MULA Abacus


2. HYLLIS Shelf Unit - This industrial looking, practical storage space is just what every space needs. Open, yet accomodating to all belongings. Grab one of these for just $9.99!

HYLLIS Shelf unit, indoor/outdoor, 23 5/8x10 5/8x29 1/8 "




3. TOFTLUND Rug - This adorable rug is just the right amount of "texture" for any room. Whether you use it as expected, on the floor... or you could mix things up and drape it at the end of your bed or it may possibly provide just enough of a boho vibe if you hang it on the wall? The ways to use this little piece of sheep-skin lookalike material are endless and all of them are adorable. This little taste of heaven can be added to your cart for just $9.99 and is a must have!

TOFTLUND Rug, white, 1 ' 10 "x2 ' 9 "


4. MÅLA Portable drawing case - This super adorable little craft storage is what I like to think of as a child's version of a briefcase! With a hard surface for them to craft upon, this is perfect for around the house or long travels in the car, ringing in at just $9.99 - this is a must have under the tree this year!
MÅLA Portable drawing case, red, 13 3/4x10 5/8 "




5. HEMLAGAD Crepe/pancake pan - Breakfast is served! This crepe/pancake pan is one your kitchen is calling for! Become the Top Chef in your kitchen for just $7.99!

HEMLAGAD Crepe/pancake pan, 10 "


6. VARDAGEN Glass in blue - There's just something so nostalgic about these glasses... and I'm gonna go ahead and indulge in some bevies in these beauties for the low price of just $4.99 for a pack of 4!
VARDAGEN Glass, blue, 10 oz



7. POLARVIDE Throw in gray - This warm, fleece throw is an unexpected gift from IKEA. It's such a brilliant neutral,with a sweet scalloped edge, and comes in at just $3.99! Everyone on your list needs a new blanket for that price.

POLARVIDE Throw, gray, 51x67 "



8. SPARKÄR Door mat in green leaves
- This precious little plant lady door mat is literally the bee's knees! I'm beyond obsessed and think it's the perfect mixture of inviting and adorable without being too much! Add a buffalo plaid mat underneath it and we'll go ahead and call it the perfect "modern farmhouse" look we all want...amIright? Add to cart for just $7.99!

SPARKÄR Door mat, indoor, green leaves, 1 ' 4 "x2 ' 0 "



9. TROMMA Wall clock in white - This adorable clock arrived to IKEA just in time... HA. See what I did there? But seriously, this is such a cute piece to add to a gallery wall and for just $1.99, you might as well grab a few as gifts!

TROMMA Wall clock, white, 9 ¾ "



10. SANNAHED Frame in white - This adorable little frame makes the perfect shadow box for your photos or artwork. Coming in both black and white, I know these will be decorating our walls. Want to add some to your home? Grab one for just $4.99!

SANNAHED Frame, white, 9 ¾x9 ¾ "

That's a wrap for 10 of the best items from Ikea for under $10! Which one is on your list this year?


Simple Snowman Countdown to Christmas Chain

 



This month I'm taking more time to embrace the little moments with my growing girl. After a year of running on overdrive for my small shop, I stepped back around Thanksgiving and realized I owe it to both of us to spend more quality time together, so we've been laughing more, cuddling tons, and doing non-stop craft projects. I thought I'd start to share our daily craft projects and hopefully inspire you to get your hands messy with your little one!



Today I'm sharing a super simple, yet adorable craft - our Snowman Countdown to Christmas Chain is something nearly everyone has the materials to make and it's such a fun way to visually show your kids how many days are left until Christmas. I highly recommend pinning this project and getting it completed early in December so that it's a fun, drawn out countdown! We started our countdown with 26 days left until Christmas and I'm so excited to watch D's face as the links go away and she realizes Christmas is almost here!

Ready to start making your Snowman Countdown to Christmas Chain? Let's do this!


Materials:
White Printer Paper
Glue
Scissors
Black Construction Paper
Markers

You'll start by cutting the white printer paper into the amount of days you are counting down... we started at 26 days so cut out 26 pieces of paper.

We then made one into a circle, gluing the ends together. Then continued that process, having Delainey help thread each piece through the next and place the glued ends together. Continue connecting until you have only one piece remaining.




Once we had all of our pieces of connected, sans one. We drew a cute snowman face on the last piece, threaded it through, and attached the ends.

We then cut out a little hat and attached with glue.

The final step was showing off our hard work and hanging it up so we could start counting down the days until Christmas!


Have you made a countdown or are you using a pre-purchased advent calendar? Tell me all about how you're counting down the days until Christmas in the comments below!



A little hello (again)...

This year has been full of chaos, as we all know... and I'll be completely real with you all, I haven't handled it well. 

I've had breakdowns, I've cried til I couldn't shed another tear, I've worried myself sick, and I've focused my energy differently than I ever have before and manifested all kinds of crazy events.. and I'm sure I'm not alone in any of this. 2020 has been a "helluva" year. I'd like to think December will be perfect, but as we all know - that's unlikely this year.

One thing I didn't do in 2020, that I was really aiming to do before the pandemic came ashore, was stay consistent and involved with my blog. I partially stopped updating as much because I felt paralyzed trying to write, I had the ultimate case of writer's block and well, I think it shows. It was hard to come up with anything to say with so much facing us. I shared my opinions and stance on major events on social media, but I honestly didn't feel I had a voice in anything happening in 2020. From the virus to race riots, that's not my expertise. I listened, I learned, and I occasionally reposted on social...but felt I had no right to share too much information here.

Beyond not knowing what to write, I also devoted ALL of my creative energy into my bow business - kind of by accident. Each week I've started having a ready-to-ship release and that's been a total time suck. Amazing, so much fun, and helpful financially, but writing is my passion - hence, why I started a blog and why I'm here writing for you now.

As I sat terrified over the last few months, not knowing what to write, it was easy for me to take a pair of scissors to my materials and create whatever felt right. It was therapeutic in some ways to step away from sharing so much here and just create "art", but then again, boxing everything in and not sharing was hard and obviously didn't do me much good. So, here I am, sharing the most honest post I've shared in 2020.

It's been a hard year. I've had my heart shattered, I've been let down, I've felt a complete lack of control - but I'm still here and I'm actually feeling more ready to share with you guys than ever. This year hasn't shut me up, it just taught me to choose the life I want, to create the life I want, and that's why I'm back - I want to encourage you to create your dream life while I create mine alongside you.

So, to summarize, I'm back and feeling better than ever about sharing here on the blog. Now is the time to create the life you want and I can't wait to help you do just that, by creating the life I want and sharing it here!

Let me just go ahead and say "hello" (again)!






The BEST Way to Make Homemade Bubbles




This year we've spent a ton of time at home, like many people. That means we've been trying to find ways to keep our little wild child occupied... and that involves lots of time spent outdoors, chasing bubbles through our backyard and sometimes even having competitions to see who can make the biggest bubbles.


We used to be the type to buy bubbles from the store...then we experimented and started making our own. Want to make your own...? Here's how:


Keeping Kids Busy with Some of The Best Boredom Busters

This post is full of Boredom Busters and is sponsored by BabbleBoxx.





We all know what's been going on, it's no surprise to hear we are staying home and maybe getting a little more one-on-one time than usual. It's been weird, sometimes tough- especially those of us who thrive on social time with our friends, like Miss Delainey. But we are adjusting, we're all learning what it's like to thrive in this "new normal" and while we are cooped up I've been doing my best to find ways to keep this little smarty-pants entertained!


She's beyond her years in knowledge so it's not always easy to keep her occupied. She's been so much fun to learn with though, it's just constantly keeping her entertained can be challenging... until we got this box. It was literally FULL of activities and we haven't stopped playing and learning together since it came in! I finally wanted to sit down and share what we've been up to with all of this fun stuff!


We've always been big fans of Disney and our Alexa... so it comes as no surprise that we instantly plugged our new Alexa in, set up a little group, and blasted Disney Hits over our "group" of Alexas! Whether we're jamming out while finishing up a craft or simply having a dance party - using our Alexa to play our favorite and quiet possibly 'the happiest playest on Earth' using the Disney Hits playlist is something we all love doing.





Something I learned recently, is that we have access to even more Disney Hits Playlists - like Disney Lullaby, Disney Piano, and Disney Junior! We have been checking them all out and I'm a huge fan of each one for different reasons! Go ahead - tell your Alexa to download and play Disney Hits, check out all the Disney Music and download it on Shopify, find the station on your Pandora, or add all the Disney Hits to your library on Apple Music! Just start jamming and be happy listening to all your favorite tunes!


If you have kids, you know they all are handling this 'virus' stuff differently. I suppose our little ones are learning to cope in ways we never had to, which is both amazing and tough to fathom at the same time. Regardless of how bewildering all of this must be for them, we all know kids can be emotional too. D is 100% a walking ball of drama, sass, and emotions so having Action for Healthy Kids remind us to begin exploring our Feelings through Color was a real blessing.


Delainey always likes to get artsy, just like most healthy, happy kids,  so she was totally game for getting our hands messy and painting. We created art that made us feel good, with no real "goal" in mind - Delainey made a cute rainbow to send to family  she said "it's going to make them feel happy", then I decided to let her help me paint my work desk... and that may very well be one of the sweetest little pieces of art she's made with so much spirit and love behind it. I'm obsessed with having a huge "mural" of her work right where I can see it, everyday I'm working, all day!

I'm over here just bragging about her art, but I love that Action for Healthy Kids is encouraging us to express Feelings in Color and they also have SO many other activities to keep us all entertained - I'm excited to pick another activity to test out with D!



Speaking of activities I'm loving trying out with D, exploring the "night sky" is something we've done more since this whole thing started than we ever had before and we both are cherishing that time together. She's always loved 'space', so it's been fun embracing that and looking at all the stars and chatting about the moon, but when we got the book, A Child's Introduction to the Night Sky: The Story of the Stars, Planets, and Constellations--and How You Can Find Them in the Sky, we both loved watching the sky even more!


With a star finder wheel, glow in the dark stickers, and a STEM aligned concept that teaches us both about constellations and inspires several activities, we're 100% excited about this Astronomy book for kids and look forward to learning more from it.



Speaking of learning, another item in the Babbleboxx that Delainey and I are just obsessed with is the Magic Sketch. I don't know if you've seen these things but its literally the coolest little electronic art kit. She has been learning her ABC's, practicing writing her name, making lists, coloring, playing tic tac toe religiously, and even attempting puzzles with this new little gadget.


Did I mention the screen is made to withstand the likes of a kiddo who writes and plays tough? Well, it is... and this boogie board also has a GORGEOUS mix of colors that Delainey can't get enough of. She likes just drawing to reveal a color and discussing her findings and that's pretty much the coolest.


The best part about her new little Magic Sketch is that it's completely paperless, she just pushes a button to erase her scribbles and on to the next masterpiece! It's endless fun and amazingly, it's pretty educational too! Want to try out a Magic Sketch? Use the code WMBBX2BQDSZZH and save 10% off any purchase at www.myboogieboard.com, good through October 2nd, 2020.


Beyond the magic board, more magic actually came in our Boredom Busters Babbleboxx - The Feel Better Box from Open the Joy literally was just what we needed during this time. With 100+ ways to keep us occupied all in one tiny box, we both are overjoyed to have something new to do each and every day and it's been just the fix we needed to cure our cabin fever. From painting to conversation starting cards, I'm so excited to explore all of this with her.


She instantly fell in love with her unicorn, which made my heart melt a little. Letting her know she could share her secrets and thoughts with him was just what she needed. She held him like a baby for a bit and then insisted he rock out to Disney Hits with us while we colored on her Boogie Board... and then worked in the little workbook included in the box.



Today's activity, and the first one in the book, included drawing feelings. D is quite the artist and we had a lot of fun discussing what each addition to her creation meant. From happy to sad, she drew a range of emotions and I'm not sure if she realizes it, but she drew exactly how most of us are feeling as of late.


I love taking the time to bond during all of this closeness, there truly is nothing better than connecting over something meaningful and this little "get well kit" is one that has made our family feel a bit better during all this... crazy.


I was so thrilled to learn this little box of goodies is actually designed by child therapists to promote conversation and healing through play, something we all need right now - but especially our youth! I also was blown away to learn that Open the Joy partners with the Spread the Joy Foundation, to distribute joy boxes to hospitalized children across America. Want to get your hands on a box? Now through June 1st you can save with the code "boredombuster".

Beyond feelings, we've been trying to challenge Delainey's mind in other ways. We all love a good puzzle, am I right? The Smart Farmer and Jump In are two SmartGames that we both can't get enough of. The other afternoon, I was able to complete a quick project for work while she played a round of Jump In next to me. It was fun to hear her debate where the pieces should go and she loved telling me about each piece, this STEM game may be among one of her new favorites.


We also had a blast playing with another STEM game, The Smart Farmer. It's a similar type of game and she loved it as well. We played these by practicing counting to each spot and recreating the patterns from the little books they include, but then we kind of got into imaginative play too and that's been perfect for us!


It's so fun getting to see her learn planning, problem-solving, spatial insight, and more. These are seriously HUGE milestones... and she doesn't even realize she's doing anything more than playing because they are such fun animal themes and inventive family games!


Want to try any of the SmartGames? Use the code 10SMART2020 on Amazon.com to save!




The last items I'm going to share today are possibly the most played with so far - the KidiGo™ Walkie Talkies + LeapFrog® LeapStart® 3D Learning System from VTech®!



Both items have been so much fun for all of us! Delainey cherishes time spent chatting on her KidiGo walkie-talkie and it's been fun watching her learn to use this fancy one with messaging, games, and more!


I can see us playing with these for years and years to come, plus I can send one with her when she decides to play in her room and we can chat while I'm wrapping up chores... it's been fun having a new way of communicating with each other and I think we both agree! You can get these Walkies at either Target or Walmart - check both for the best deal!



The LeapFrog LeapStart 3D Learning System is also something we will get YEARS of use out of... with so many activities and ways for her to learn just by pressing a button, I'm seriously having trouble not GUSHING about this gadget!




With the combination of real books and the touch and talk activities, this system seemed to make learning fun for her and the first two books (sold seperately) we received had some of her favorite Characters in them so doing, "Math in Action", was super fun for her and the Toys Save the Day book with Toy Story characters had her jumping for joy!


I'm already browsing the LeapFrog site for another set of books, I know she's going to be so excited to learn more from them... and, well, that's just amazing and I'm eager to watch her learn and grow!


Get your hands on a LeapFrog LeapStart 3D Learning System at Target, Walmart, or Amazon!




Beyond all that she's gained from her new 3D Learning System, I was stoked to hear VTech & LeapFrog are helping parents and teachers and children as much as they can with a website dedicated to offering resources for learning at home, get more information at LearnThroughThis.com


It's definitely a weird time in our lives right now but we are beating the time spent indoors with all of these amazing items included in our Boredom Buster Babbleboxx, how are you passing the time in your home lately? I'd love to hear all about it in the comments below!