Monday, December 31, 2012

Play Dough Cake for New Year's Eve

Along with your bottle of wine for the adult party guests bring something special for your little party goers! We made this homemade play dough cake this afternoon to bring to a kid friendly party we have been invited to.
Using the follwing recipe I made three seperate batches of play dough, all scented with different flavors of kool-aid. Next, Emma and I made a three layer cake and decorated the top with glitter and a play dough "2013!"
Super Easy Kool-Aid Play dough:
1. Mix 2 cups flour, 1/2 cup salt, 1 package of kool-aid (no sugar envelope pack) and 2 tbs cream of tartar.
2. Next, add 3 tsp oil and slowly add 1 1/2 cups boiling water. Small amounts at a time until your dough forms. Mix, knead and enjoy! 

If your dough is too wet, add more flour. Too dry, add more water.

Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 30, 2012

New Year's Eve--Crafts for Kids!

 Boy has my New Year's Eve festivities changed over the past five years. I don't spend weeks searching for the fabulous new outfit that I will wear to go to the amazing party we got invited to. We usually stay in these days with our beautiful kiddos and good friends. We cook, eat, laugh, play games and honestly this usually all happens before we ring in the New Year at 9pm. Yes, our New Year's Eve has changed and it is just perfect now.
 This year we made some fun party poppers for the kids to crack open after dinner. Each filled with a few goodies to surprise them. For more details check out my Party Popper tutorial at The Studio.
 A tiara is a must for every occasion, at least that's what Emma thinks. See how she made a New Year's Eve Tiara over at The Studio.
 Noise is a must on New Year's Eve. Check out our Salt Shaker Noise Maker to give the kids a fun craft to make and a fun shaker for the countdown.
Check out what we used to make our Recycled Party Hats for our New Year's Eve celebration! Pretty cool when my children turn trash to treasure!

Happy New Year's to all! Wishing you a safe and fun celebration surrounded by love.
green owl mama

Friday, December 21, 2012

Egg Carton Wreath

 I knew we have been saving all those egg cartons for a good reason. This was an accidental craft, don't you just love when that happens? Especially when it comes out so sweet. Make a sweet little wreath today and join me over at The Studio for full instructions.

Snowflake Prints

 We made beautiful watercolor snowflakes using doilies. It was the perfect winter morning craft. Both Emma and Grayson could enjoy this one together and that is not an easy thing to do. I feel like a have made a mama accomplishment today and I have two beautiful snowflakes hanging in my window to show for it!
To see how our snowflakes were born, join me over at The Studio, now!

Recycle Chistmas Cards

 Every year it never fails--I end up with more holiday cards then people I know! I don't know why I can't stop myself from ordering way too many, I guess I am a planner. I am early to everything and never run out of something I need and this is the price I pay. So with so many cards I had to find ways to reuse them and not waste them! Especially the ones with my cute babies faces on them!
First, we made ornaments with our old cards and some contact paper. Really simple, easy and made for some very special ornaments to add to our tree. My full tutorial is over at The Studio, join me.
 The other way we reused cards this year was to make gift tags. Perfect. The kids loved to cut with fancy scissors while we did this and I loved using their abstract shapes on all of our gifts. Here is the instructions for this one.... Recycled Gift Tags.

Picture Frame Winter Scene

 Do you have old frames that could use a new life? We used our old frames to create some beautiful winter art work. Wouldn't these make great gifts? They were a lot of fun for Emma to make too. Anytime we paint on something that we normally don't paint--the excitement runs high!
We are over at The Studio, by Kiwi Crate with this fun holiday craft. Join us!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Elf Legs Apron

Is this the cutest little elf you've ever seen, or what? I think so, although I am biased being that the elf belongs to me!
Emma made this sweet elf apron for her little brother with mostly good intentions and also to humor herself as he ran around the yard with his little elf legs on!

We made this with a simple apron and fabric markers. For more details head over to  
The Studio, by Kiwi Crate for my full tutorial.

Scrapbook Paper Christmas Tree Card

Homemade cards are so fun for children to make and so special to receive. We made this one with all the beautiful scraps of paper we have piling up. Join me over at The Studio for the full tutorial on our scrapbook tree card.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Mitten Dolls

 My children wanted to make themselves when we decided to turn some spare mittens into dolls. This started out as a gift, but how could I part with these sweet dolls now? I love them and I love the time that we spent together creating these winter treasures.
We filled ours with coffee beans so they smell amazing and would really make a great holiday gift for a loved one. 
For full instructions on these mitten friends, head on over to The Studio, by Kiwi Crate. I am there with all the details!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Glitter Pine Cones

 Join me over at Family Sponge today for a fun craft that will be enjoyed by all ages. With some natures findings and glitter my children had some silly fun making these beautiful pine cones for my mantel this holiday season.
 Oh how we love our glitter.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Holiday Gift for Teachers

 Isn't it a strange thing the first time you send your wee little one into the arms of another to be cared for, taught, nurtured and loved? I feel so blessed to have already (in our short school age days) had some amazing teachers in Emma's life. I always like to make sure our teachers know just how much we appreciate them.
Here are a couple extra special touches we added to the teacher holiday gift this year. The card above involved each child in the class. Over a couple weeks I some how got each child to answer this question "What gift do you hope Ms. Amanda gets for the holidays?" I wrote their gift wish for their teacher and they signed their names on round card stock pieces that I cut out with a paper punch. With a few extra touches a very special card came together and the kids sweet answers to this question were funny, touching, sweet and very thoughtful. It's always great to hear what five-year old's have to say.
 This frame was easily made with some chalkboard paint and allowed me to personalize a class photo for our amazing teacher.
Just throwing in a simple way to say Happy Holidays to the children's friends. Homemade play dough packaged nicely is always warmly welcomed in my house (especially over sugary treats!)

I hope you find wonderful ways to thank the people in our lives that take on the job of being there for our children in so many ways. I know for me I can never actually show how I appreciate these great people that make lasting impressions on my children.

"Thin Mint" Christmas Cookies

 I have made these cookies for as long as I can remember. It is one of my favorite childhood memories. Being with my family, making a special cookie and licking each drop of chocolate off my little fingers. Now it has become an even more special tradition for me as I enjoy this with my children.
 With a couple secret ingredients you will be amazed at how closely this taste like the infamous mint cookie that everyone loves so very much!
 To find out this simple and fun recipe along with the secret ingredients that make it so great, join me over at The Studio, where I share this recipe for the very first time.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Light a Candle for the Families of Newtown

Beeswax Candle Tutorial
My heart is broken. The horror of yesterdays events have me feeling lost, empty and in pain for all of those families. I will continue to pray for these people that have endured such a horrific tragedy and I will take action in any way I can to change things in this world of turmoil that we live in.
I have chosen to not talk with my children about this devastating tragedy. I can not comprehend what has happened, surely my five and two year old can not in any way understand this. I will shield and protect their innocent minds. I will allow them to think we still live in a place where they can feel safe at school and to believe that for the most part people are good.
This morning we won't talk about yesterdays unimaginable events, but we will sit together, enjoy each other, love each other and light candles for families that are not able to do such things on this day.

Friday, December 14, 2012

15 Homemade Gifts!!!

We have ten days left and winter break starts today! Time to get those gifts made. I have preached it before, but I have to say it again--homemade gifts are so important for me to have my children take part in. It teaches them to be creative and resourceful and I love that!
 My first was inspired by my amazingly creative sister-in-law. She made chalkboard frames to title each table at her wedding. I love it! Why not make a chalkboard frame to change with each season. Who wouldn't love that? Head over to The Studio for full instructions on this fun gift!
These scented treasures smell amazing and can be used to make any room smell lovely. The kids and I enjoyed making them so much. Working with salt dough can be so relaxing and throw some lavender oil into the mix and you will have a day of peace and tranquil harmony!
We are at The Studio again with this one! Join us!
Last year we made these lovely coffee bean covered candles. They smell so yummy and look beautiful. Great gift for the coffee and candle lover in your life. Check out my full post on these here... Coffee Bean Candles.
Our scarves were such a big hit last year and we still use every single one. Emma's class even made these this year and it reminded me what a wonderful gift this is for children to make. I think we may make a few to bring to our local shelter this year. Here is my full tutorial on these great scarves.......The Great Felt Scarf!
Last Christmas we decided to exchange all homemade gifts with our very good friends. It was really sweet and fun. Emma and I made this great wooden memory set for her lifelong bestie and it couldn't have been more special of a gift. Full details here...Wooden Memory Set.
Which brings me to the toddler gift that we also made for our wonderful friends. I really loved our homemade Christmas exchange. I would encourage everyone to try this. IT really gets you thinking outside the box. Check out this one here... Toddler Baking Set
A sweet and festive frame for a loved one. Never underestimate the power of buttons and glue! Check out this one at The Studio!
Recycle a sock and make a gift for a younger sibling. This sweet guy has become a favorite stuffy friend in our house. See how to make your own here... Sock Caterpillar.
Another great one for big sister or brother to make for a younger sibling is a handmade coloring book. So very sweet . See how ours came together, The Coloring Book.
Puffy paint will remain a favorite for my children forever, I believe! If I dare pull it out of the drawer we have screams of excitement in the house. So, this No-Slip Sock is a true favorite to make for holiday gifts with my kiddos. We made these for the kids cousins last year.
We have a little obsession with chalkboard paint! Turning everything into a chalkboard that gets into our way! Watch out! And go see how we made this very cool gift for the hostess in our life, Chalkboard Coasters!
If all else fails stick something into a jar! We did hot cocoa mix with a couple extra special touches and play dough mix was a hit too! Check it out.....Jar Gifts!!
For the toddler in your life these wonderful colored Stacking Cups are a favorite of mine.
I know you have some left-over campaign buttons sitting around. Make these sweet pins with your children for Grandma, a teacher, aunt or neighbor. They will be welcomed with love. My full tutorial can be seen here, Flower Buttons.
And lastly, you can always just give Money! What child does not love play money?? This would make a great stocking stuffer and honestly Play Money in our house always seems to spark the most wonderful imaginative play.
I hope you make some wonderful homemade gifts this year! 
From my creative table to yours. Happy Holidays!
green owl mama

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Snow Owl

 It is true, I have a secret love (obsession) with owls and I am passing it down to my dear children. Yes, they can "Hoo Hoo" like no other and in their spare time they create adorable little owls out of pine cones. Is there anything wrong with that?
 So, of course in the winter we make snow owls and hey, in the summer we will probably make sun owls or some sort of summery themed owl like that. Why not? They are so darn cute with those big eyes and plump short bodies.
We made two different types of snow owls on this day. Grayson's with cotton balls and Emma's with feathers or the 5-year old and 2-year old versions. Join us over at The Studio, by Kiwi Crate for instructions on both snow owls!