Wednesday, September 2, 2009

simple gift

I'm a sucker for marketing gimmicks. Call me crazy, but I thought this football inspired Dr. Pepper was the cutest thing ever. I, of course, HAD to buy one for my hubby. Not becuase he loves football (go Cougs!), but possibly becuase he has a secret (very secret) love for Dr. Pepper. And I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to surprise him when he opened his lunch at work.
You'll notice I didn't go all out on a cutesy tag -- I've learned that cutesy is great, but not necessary with my husband. He loves the sentiment more than anything and he isn't likely to gush about all the work that goes into the tag. When you open the tag it says "Hope you have an absolute BALL at work today!! We love you!" I know, totally cheesy right? Sometimes though, a dollar soda and a handmade tag are just the trick to show someone you love them :D (got the soda at Walmart btw)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Homemade gifts as of late ...

I've made a lot of homemade gifts lately. Unfortunately I haven't been taking pictures :) Here are a few I managed to capture before I wrapped them:

A scrabble-tile necklace for a little girl starting the first grade:

I let my daughter pick out the picture (in this case, a pink gerbera daisy picture that we found through a google images search) and we put it together on some stretchy fishing cord with some beads. Total project only cost me $2 in supplies since I already had most everything at home :) I love when that happens!

We paired the necklace up with some flower hair clips -- 6 is definetely not too old for some bling and bows in your hair!

My sister-in-law turned 16 this week. This gift was a challenge. Teens love storebought stuff (at least I did when I was a teenager!) and I didn't feel like I could come up with a jewlery/room decor gift that I was sure would fit her style. In the end I went for a "back-to-school" theme and used turqoise/lime green to pull it all together.
Here is a picture of all the goods:
I mod podged a clipboard, some binder clips and a mini notebook with matching scrapbook paper and then got some candy and pens/pencils to match.
I decided to bag everything up in cello bags so it would look less random ;) I think presentation is very important with homemade gifts. I wanted to put it all in a turqoise bucket/basket but I ran out of time, so I think the individual bagging and bag toppers helped :)

I'm working on Christmas gifts and more birthday gifts this month so stay tuned :)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Dollhouse Cakes!

Hey dear bloggers! My friend just started the coolest business -- miniature cookie-cakes made especially for parties and special occasions and decorated to match :)
To celebrate her business she is hosting a giveaway, so all of you local Utahn's head on over for a chance to win some delicious (and pretty!) cakes for your next get-together :)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Personalized game

I saw THIS tutorial for a personalized family version of Yahtzee and decided to give it a try. It wasn't that hard at all, and the directions she gives are perfectly detailed and so helpful. It made a fun gift for my game-playing sil.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I'm back.

Don't have a heart attack. Here are a few easy-peasy projects and recipes I've been up to lately:

These super yummy peanut butter balls. The original recipe is HERE. But I added chopped dried cranberries and followed some suggestions from of the recipe reviews to improve them a bit.

I made THIS banana bread into mini-muffins. I liked it even better this way. SOO good.

I finally mailed off my sisters very late birthday present which included this cute picture frame (found at the $1 store and then covered with fun paper), and a few idea notebooks, also covered with cutesy paper.

Remember those THREE sheets of paper that I bought that have since covered three picture frames and two sets of wood blocks for home decor?? Well, I'm not done with them yet. I needed some new magnets for the fridge so I whipped up some of the classic glass marble magnets. I don't think I'll ever get tired of those.

I wonder what else I can make out of that paper?? :)

Then my mother-in-law walked me through (i.e. held my hand and told me exactly what to do because I'm clueless) making a diaper/wipes holder for my purse or diaper bag. I loved this project and it was so fun to actually SEW something (rather than just blog about sewing projects others have done).

This is a picture of the holder with the changing pad. The changing pad was a pain -- we used plastic on one side and fabric on the other. I will never sew with plastic again! But it was worth it in the end:)

Here is the inside with the pockets and binkie holder:

And the finished project all ready to stash into my purse. Love it!

I still have a message board I'm working on and another birthday present in the works ...expect exciting stuff.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Why I'm lame

No more excuses. Time to face the truth. I've picked up a new hobby and it's taken over my craft-collecting, recipe-writing time.
So even though poor SynergyMom is sorely neglected ... I'm still having fun :)
Check it out at

No worries ... I will be back ;)

Friday, April 17, 2009

Because I'm Lame ...

Since I'm being a blog slacker, I thought I would share a few favorite links ... of people who actually keep up with their blogs :)

Hope you enjoy, and find them as addicting as I do!


Thursday, April 9, 2009

Great things in the works ...

Right now I'm on a healthy snack BLITZ. Of course I am out to share the love and I am taking photos and gathering recipes for an all-out round-up of the tastiest, healthiest treats you could ever make. It's been a yummy process ...
In the meantime, check out THIS BLOG for some ideas on a health(ier) Easter basket -- I especially love her cheddar crackers in the carrot bag ... too bad I HATE cheddar crackers.
In my family we also focus on healthy treats -- the type of stuff a bunny might eat right ? Usually I do something with trail mix, all-natural fruit leathers, individual juice drinks (like mini Naked drinks) and little treats you can get at the health food store. Since these are treats the kids don't have everyday they still think it is exciting and don't even know what they're missing :)

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Spring has sprung (just not in Utah)

Each spring I manage to put out a few simple, but colorful decorations. I'm not into fluffy bunnies or chicks so my "theme" has revolved around this bright green grassy stuff I found at the craft store :)
For a piano-top decoration I simply painted some miniature flower pots on fun spring colors, filling them with my grass.
I use the same grass as fillers on my candle holders that sit on each side of the T.V. Usually the containers have stones in them with the candles, but I always switch it up at the holidays. Usually I fill them with holiday candy (orange and black jellybeans at Halloween or red and green gumdrops at christmas), but pastel M&M's have proved too tempting of a decoration :)

The rest of my decorations are some simple miniature baskets with ... you guessed it, the grass :) I scatter some mini eggs and call it good :) Simple, but cheerful enough -- especially when I look out my window and see snow :(

Saturday, March 21, 2009


Roundup time :) Here is a random sampling of some new fun crafts ....

I'm really enjoying this photograph wall calendar from Photojojo. I think it would such a fun date night with my hubby to go around town and take pictures of the numbers together. Perhaps we could make it a family outing and help my kiddos learn their numbers. Either way it looks like fun. Here is the LINK with some instructions.

I saw this wedding sign-in book on a wedding photography website. Sadly I have no clue which site it was :( If the photographer ever comes across this blog then I would like to publicly apologize for not giving them due credit!! The cover of the book essentially says "Choose a card and write your wish for the bride and groom" Those cute colored/shaped cards in the background are what you write your wish on. Then you put it in an envelope and seal it for the bride and groom.
I think this is the best idea ever! Much better than a book of signatures (whoopdidoo). We will definetly be doing this for whichever of my sisters gets married next! (Just think I can use my cricut to cut the cards and the envelopes! Sweet)

I realize this advent countdown is for Christmas .... but it has been sitting on my desktop for months. Time to just share it! Plus, you could customize this countdown for any fun celebration -- a family vacation, a birthday ect. This LINK has fabulous instructions and pictures.

And now for one of my favorite Martha ideas of ALL time. .. the pom pom decorations and gorgeous table luminaras. I am dying to make these (in this color scheme of course! it's my favorite!). Now I just need a baby shower/wedding shower excuse ... or perhaps my 3 year old will be having a very classy birthday party this year :D
Here is the link.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


I am loving this inspiration book right now! So full of ideas on every single page! Well except for the part about the clown room. That was just scary.
It sells at Home Depot for $20 but you can get it used for $5 INCLUDING shipping through Or you could just beg your sister to buy it for you. That worked for me.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

quiet bag

My neighbor Nycole showed me this CUTE quiet bag she made for her son. She bought the bag at Roberts for $1.50 (go her!) and it is made of felt. She used clip art as the template for her letters and cute little scripture-reading boy. The bag isn't very wide and is perfect for holding little books, crayons and other items for church.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Homemade crayons

So I finally tried out that homemade crayon tutorial that I posted on here months ago. It was a fun project though I definitely got sick of peeling the wrappers off of crayons!

Here is the before picture:
Notice my crayons did not cover the whole pan. This turned out to be a problem because the edges were too thin, so make sure you have enough crayons to cover the pan.

This is after they baked in the oven at 350 for a few minutes:
It was so liquidy all of the colors were shifting and swirling like crazy when I jiggled the pan as I pulled it out of the oven.

I let it cool for a bit until it was soft but pliable. I used my cookie cutter to make the shapes:

Once it was completely cool I used a spatula to start popping them out. As you can see I have a lot of left over crayon. I wonder how it will work to just remelt them and make some more?

Finished product:
I think I'm going to keep these in my church bag. Crayons are much more novel this way :)

Mod Podge time

So I'm pretty sure I blogged these frames before:They were those simple wood frames, covered with scrapbook paper and paint. I made them last year in hopes of bringing more color to my home. After putting away the Christmas decorations this January I was sad to see so much color gone again, so I decided to start on another colorful project. Using those same three sheets of paper from the frames above I made two sets of word blocks:
You'll notice these "LOVE" blocks still need some finishing touches ... I wonder how many months it will be before I actually do that :)

My favorite part? Using some scrap wood, paint I had on hand and three sheets of paper I was able to make three separate projects for my home :)

homemade hairbow holder

My niece celebrated her 2-year birthday this weekend. Rather than try to figure out what toy she didn't already have, or what outfit her mom would like, I decided to make something useful:) I have been meaning to make a cutesy hairbow holder for awhile so this seemed like the perfect opportunity. I simply bought two pre-painted wood pieces (in this case I found the butterflies at the craft section at Walmart), a yard of ribbon and some hot glue. I glued the ribbon to the back of one of the butterflies and fashioned a nail-hanger from some extra ribbon, which I then glued to the back top of the butterfly. Then I simply glued the butterflies together, back to back. Throw on some cute hairbows and you're set! Easy huh?

Saturday, February 28, 2009

photo crafts

I am slightly obsessive about pictures so it only makes sense that I would love photo crafts :)

These first pictures are some valentines that a professional photographer made for her son to pass out. I love this idea. Not only was it great subtle advertising for her, but it is a fun and personal valentine as well. I think something like this would make a great party favor as well.

In this next photo you're going to have to get creative. Try to picture these jars (recylced pickle jars, canning jars, ect.) with cute pictures of children in them -- becuase I wouldn't put pics of these guys up in my house.

I think this craft would look absolutely adorable on shelving in my (future) red kitchen. Something about canning jars used as decoration seems so homey in the kitchen. Plus I'm all about creative ways to display photographs :)

Another new favorite for those with some photoshop/illustrator skills:

I love this idea and think it would be such a fun creative change over the painted wood letters name trend you see all the time (even though those are cute too :)

Monday, February 23, 2009

Help a fellow crafter??

Hey ladies! Time for a little self-serving plea for help ;)
I'm entering a blog contest -- hoping to win tuition to an amazing photography class (perhaps my craft photographs will improve?! One can only hope!)
If you want to help a sister out, just click ON THIS LINK. It's that simple :)

You rock!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Blushing Buttercream Pettiskirt GIVEAWAY!!!!

Blushing Buttercream Pettiskirt GIVEAWAY!!!!

I adore these pettiskirts!! They are everywhere in pictures and I know my daughter would look gorgeous in it. Now if I don't win I just have to convince someone with sewing skills to make one for me ...

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

A few of my favorite things ...

So I had a few spare moments today so I decided to browse the Better Homes and Gardens website for some fresh craft ideas. I'm on a craft kick lately... well, a finding crafts kick ... the "doing" part still has yet to happen.
Here are my favorites from my web searching:

I love these adorable flowers. I've seen this idea used as a Valentine but I think they look SO FUN as a centerpiece! This would be great at a children's birthday party because they could double as favors. Granted I think what I really really love is simply the color scheme. I'm addicted to oranges, pinks and yellows combined .... think Rainbow Sherbet or a sunset. Anytime I see a craft in those colors I instantly love it ... so consider me biased.
Here is the link.

Ok... once again the project is in orange so I'm biased from the start. I actually just love the combination of pictures and craft paper. Usually when I see these letters they are done up in just paper, so adding the pictures makes it really unique. I think this would be a fun decoration even in a living room. Spell "HOME" and add family pictures.
Here is the link.
If you've been a blog follower for awhile you know I also love homemade wall art. I don't care how many times I see an example where they paste scrapbook paper on canvas I still LOVE it. Someday I will have more than one available wall and I will do this. I'm afraid I will go overboard and do it in every single room ....
Here is the link.
How cute are these valentines? So simple too! A little paper, a teeny bit of treats and a whole lot of matches left over.
Here is the link.
These just looked pretty to me. I think votives are one of the most versatile ways to decorate -- just check out Martha Stewart, she has a billion ways to dress up glass votives. I love them all.
Here is the link.
Remember what I said about decorating with candles? HOW COOL IS THIS??? You could use this idea for any color themed celebration. I really adore this idea. Someday, when I have an unlimited budget (ha) I'm going to buy a million votives and sprinkles in every color. Maybe not.
Here is the link.

Monday, February 2, 2009

calender o' love

My friend gave me the neatest gift!! My very own February calendar made of wood blocks, paint and some festive scrapbook paper.

I imagine that most everyone has seen a calendar like this, where you position the blocks to show the correct date (the blocks have different numbers on each side). This turned out so cute. I would love to make one for each month!