Monday, 9 December 2013

The Wheels On The Bus-Driver Christmas Gift

There are few better gifts in life than those that are hand-made with the receiver in mind. We struggled last year with what to get our bus driver and then it occurred to me that his most used item was likely his keys. I had my son draw a picture of his bus and his bus driver. Once that was complete, I scanned the picture and shrunk it down to fit in the clear key chain frame that I found at Micheal's. In Photoshop, I had my hubby add the text to fit and viola!

 It has our bus drivers name and my sons name as well, but I have them blurred out. If you don't know how to use Photoshop, you can easily have your child (our yourself), spell out the words you would like to use and manipulate them in Word when you are shrinking the image. What about you, do you love making and receiving hand-made gifts?

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Friday, 18 October 2013

A Spooktacular Halloween, On A Budget

Halloween is around the corner and it is my second favorite holiday of the year (behind Christmas of course). I am a big believer that nice things don't need to come with a HUGE budget. All you need is a small budget and a little imagination!

 As a Daycare Provider one might think that we keep it cutesy cutsey around here, this is not true. Although we are definitely not out for guts and gore, we are out to have a little Halloween fun!

Take a look, if you dare! Bwahahahahahahahahaha...cahcah...bluhh...ecchh. Ahem.

I kept the front hall pretty simple and high, away from tiny hands and mouths. Some of these decorations I've collected from the dollar store as well as Michaels Arts & Crafts. A few skulls, black roses and blood dripping candles does the trick in a jiffy.

We give our candy out in a spooky witch hand caldron that is animated and cackles. It is one of the kidlets favorite decorations and needs to be shown to all entering victims...uhum...guests ;)

This year we added a huge fuzzy spider to the mix and my kidlets thought he would look great climbing the banister, I have to agree.

My son requested a graveyard with smoke this year and I think it will be a hit come Halloween. Some of the tombstones came from the dollar store and some came from Walmart.

I made the witches leg from two of those severed legs you can buy at the dollar store and stuffed them in some stripped hose. I purchased some old shoes from Value Village and spray painted them red (they were previously black) and once that dried, I used Elmers Spray Adhesive all over shoes. I sprinkled some red glitter I had also found at the dollar store onto them, and they were ready to go!

Every graveyard needs some bones. All my bones have come from the dollar store over the years.

The front stoop has a light up Skull head which I found at Shoppers a few years ago AFTER Halloween when their post-holiday things go on major clearance sale. He might have been something around $10 down from $40.00. And of course, no stoop is complete without a witches broom and some pumpkins.

My door sign I purchased at Michaels. About a month before holidays, they typically place their holiday decor on sale for 40% off. Watch for it! The decals I found at Lowes of all places, they are part of a large decal set I placed on our garage.

I think the decals are my favorite part and the price was so good I bought another one for next year as well :)

Lastly, we hang a few scary dudes and we were done. This guy was another clearance item after Halloween. It's the best time to buy higher priced items, it's like they're giving them away. I'm pretty sure this one came from Walmart. 

Again, another clearance item, I found this zombie at Loblaws after Halloween, another steal.

And this witch shouldn't have been texting while riding. I found her at Lowes this year full price, but a good price.

Do you go all out for certain holidays? Have a safe and spooktacular Halloween this year and thanks, as always, for stopping by!!

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Wednesday, 16 October 2013

House Reveal Part 1: Curb Appeal

Where in Sam Hill have I been? It appears that I dropped off the face of the Earth. I did, in fact, drop right out of blogging land and for no other reason than, I just wasn't feelin' it!

Back in February I had full intentions of returning to regular blogging but I just hit a block. Nothing to say, nothing to write, no pictures to take. I was just stuck!

Over the last year we have built, moved and settled in to our new home and I am in love with this place. For the first time since I was a kid, I can walk out my door and see friendly, familiar faces eager to say 'Hello' and chin wag. This to me is priceless. I grew up in a tiny tiny hamlet, if you will, that only had a corner store and everyone knew everyone, I mean EVERYONE. When I moved to a much bigger city in highschool the familiar-ness seemed to disappear at the waist side. I lived in apartments, houses and condos over the years and that neighbourhood feeling was lost. So when we moved to our new neighbourhood, it was a breath of fresh air, and a chance to get comfortable!

Over the past several months we have become very comfortable and I'm excited to finally find something to blog about and something to share :D Here's to hoping I'm UNstuck!

Last November I shared this post with you of our Toy Organization around here, and I just wanted to reveal a little more of our homestead.

The exterior of our home has been the longest transition since we moved in, and really has just finally finished up a few weeks ago. Our home over the last year has gone from this...

To this!

First we had our sod delivered and our driveway laid and then we got to work on our garden. I used this AMAZING tool called Plan-A-Garden, which is a free online landscaping tool. I chose a house that had a similar shape that I could work with, it wasn't exact at all, but I could envision my home over the one choosen.

This is what the plan looked like from the Plan-A-Garden once I was done:

Once I had the plan, I printed it out and brought it to the garden center. I wrangled some help because I am a "former" black thumb (in training to be something that hints at green;), and we went shopping! The worker at the garden center was extremely helpful and actually took some time to show me what 'medium watering' is (Huh?), as well as helping me pick out proper plants.

Here it is a little closer.

After the garden was complete I just needed a screen door and the front was complete! We purchased a wood door and painted it as well as the hardware which was originally white, had my Dad come help with hanging (aren't Dad's great!) and VOILA, we're done!

Hope you enjoyed a sneak peek at our home. There will be more to come from inside shortly (hopefully with better quality photos). ;)

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Sunday, 24 February 2013

Date With Daddy

I think the relationship that my daughter forms with her Daddy is of utmost importance. She spends the day with me, and yes we have dates too, but Daddy-Daughter dates are a must around here. I've had the extreme luck to marry, what I think, is the best man walking this planet! Tall order right ;) Our kidlets observe on a daily basis how spouses should treat one another in a marriage, although sometimes we fail at this, which I think is ok because they also see how we pick each other up again and still love unconditionally. We are not perfect around here by any means. I think these Daddy-Daughter dates are a time to teach my daughter how she should be treated in a relationship in the future. So we make a big deal around here from start to finish!!

Of course, first we have to choose our outfit, a tough decision for this little girl. I gave her four choices so we wouldn't be there all day.

After 10 minutes of going back and forth she decided on this one.

Then we did her hair. She decided on braids and a pink bow.

Once she was all ready, Daddy nipped out to pick her up some flowers because every girl deserves flowers on a first date, no matter what! He knocked on the door and she answered it so excited to find Daddy AND pink flowers (her favorite colour) to boot.

Typically you don't kiss on the first date, but this was an exception ;)

She loved them! Her very first dozen roses and they came from her Daddy as they should. 

She wanted to bring a rose with her so we put them in some water and took one out for the road.

They dined on chocolate milk and fish n' chips. A gourmet meal if you ask me!

And most importantly, she was learning how to be treated by her future dates in her life, with respect and kindness.

We saved and dried one of the roses and I placed it in a window box with a photo from her first date with Daddy. It hangs in her bedroom as a reminder of her first date with her Daddy and she will have many many more before her dates are no longer ONLY with her Daddy.

So all you Daddy's out there, go ask your beautiful daughters out on a date and get teaching them how they should be treated in this world. It's the little things in life that matter and remember to leave your phone in your pocket, it is VERY rude to be on it in the presence of a lady ;)

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Thursday, 21 February 2013

Where Have I Been?

WOW!! It's 2013, a New Year and where have I been?? Well I hit my blogiversary in December and I honestly have been just on a time out. I've been contemplating if I want to keep blogging, why I blog and why I would continue to do so. I have found over the year that my ambitions for my blog changed somewhere along the way. I started this blog for me, some place I could just get out all the ideas that exist in my head and maybe be some inspiration to one person somewhere.

As time went along I felt pressure to do certain things in order to grow my blog and branch out. This pressure of course was all my own. I felt if I wasn't linking to as many parties as possible, no one was stopping by and then what was the point?? So I would get up before anyone else in the house and link my post to as many as I could and browse and comment to my fair share which is proper etiquette. Then it started to be too much.

I don't blog or link or browse or comment anytime during the day and not unless my kids are sleeping and my husband is busy doing something. I'm not judging those who do, this is just how I roll. It's my rule. This is MY hobby, it's not meant to impede on my mothering or my marriage and I felt the pull to jeopardize this time (again, my own pressure) was becoming great. I felt if this line wasn't crossed, my blog just could not survive.

So I stopped blogging cold turkey and just took some time to get some new perspective. I discovered that if I look at the facts (monetary gain, followers), I get overwhelmed and like the break but then I make a cute lunch or organize something and miss sharing. So this is what I have come up with...well actually, I've just gone back to the basic reason I started this in the first place, to share. No blogging world, link party, monetary gain, followers pressures. Just blogging to share to that one person that's not my mom out there, YOU!

This DOESN'T have to be that blog that is discovered by the Ellen Show, it's my little ol' blog that is created by a Full-time Mom, Full-time Wife and Full-time Daycare Provider that I love. I can not be everything ALL the time, even though I so desperately strive to. I'm just one person who will blog when I blog, link when I link and maybe one day figure out how this whole thing works. I'm taking the pressure off. I may NEVER sell an ad space because, even after a year, I don't know how to begin that process. And although I could read the post on my Pinterest board showing me how, clearly I just rather not right now.

So after 1 year of blogging, I am still a novice at this whole thing, and that's ok! Now that that's off my chest, I would love if you would stick around and see what happens next ;) Happy Belated New Year!!