Chinese New Year Broom Craft

    Chinese New Year is also known as Spring Festival in China and falls on Saturday, January 28th this year.  It is the year of the Rooster and Chinese families will be gathering on New Year's Eve to eat dinner together and to clean their homes to sweep away bad fortune before New Year's Day.       Chinese children love this celebration and are excited to receive red envelopes which are stuffed with "lucky money" and well wishes from their loved ones on New Year's Day.  Due to modern technology, some teens even have apps on their smartphones to receive their "lucky money" electronically which demonstrates how even this ancient tradition has caught up with modern times.     Since this is the most important traditional holiday in China and signals the start of spring there, it is a public holiday in mainland China for seven days from Chinese New Year's Eve to day 6 of the lunar calendar new year (January 27 – February 2, 2017). … [Read more...]

Snowman Earrings

    I am way behind this year on Christmas shopping.  Normally, I would have already finished buying all presents by mid November.  I'm trying cut down on my spending budget and making sure I give some personalized gifts that will show my loved ones just how much they mean to me.  My godmother loves to wear themed costume jewelry so I thought it would be a great idea if I made her some earrings.       Since it is winter and she has been rocking her winter accessories, I came up with a plan to make her some snowman earrings using supplies that I could purchase right at our local art supply store.  You'd be surprised how many great gifts you could make with just a few items that you could buy locally and are pretty inexpensive.Snowman EarringsMaterials Needed:Tools (small wire cutter, round nose pliers, and chain nose pliers) 22mm Fishhook earwire 3″ Head pins Glass snowman beads Tiny silver … [Read more...]

Trolls Puppet Craft

    I've always loved to get artistic inspiration from the films we watch and the music that we listen to as a family.  Growing up, my siblings and I loved playing with what we called our "Treasure Trolls."  This is what we called these dolls we had that were a type of plastic doll with furry up-combed hair depicting a troll, also known as a Dam doll after their creator Danish woodcutter Thomas Dam.  Some people also referred to them as good luck trolls, or alternatively gonk trolls in the United Kingdom.    They became a a toy craze in North America during the early 60's and again during the 90's when I was a teenager.  Thomas Dam actually carved his first troll doll as a gift for his daughter.  Later, he began selling the dolls locally after his daughter's friends started asking for them.  I'm sure he never imagined that his troll dolls would become such symbols of pop culture.  Now that the Trolls movie has come … [Read more...]

Disney Frozen Party Ideas #QuickerPickerUpper #DisneyFrozen @Bounty #Ad

    As a busy Working Mom, I don't have a lot of time to party plan and I especially don't have time for the messy cleanup during and after the party.  Normally, I try to make cleaning up fun for everyone, including the kids, so they won't realize that they are actually helping to get rid of the mess because they are enjoying themselves too much.  Now, you can make clean up quick and fun for the whole family with limited-edition NEW Bounty Prints Featuring Disney Frozen!    Frozen is one of my most beloved Disney animated films and Bounty napkins and paper towels are a staple in our home because they are tough on messes and, in a house full of men, I need all the tough I can get.  Aside from keeping a clean house, I also love to be able to save a little money on party decor whenever possible.  After all, raising a family can be very expensive and it is important to cut corners and not put too much strain on the family budget.    … [Read more...]

The Very Hungry Paint Chip Caterpillar Craft

    It's no surprise that I totally geek out over books since I am a Literacy Specialist.  I love to take advantage of any opportunity to get kids and young people excited about reading.  After all, good readers use their skills in just about every facet of their lives and it's important to impart these abilities to children early on.     One of my favorite books of all time is The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. Most kids can remember reading this book when they were younger because it is a classic picture book that has been enjoyed by generation after generation.  The book depicts a very hungry caterpillar literally eating his way through all the pages of the book.    Not only are the illustrations in this book bright and colorful, but they are a beautiful representation of the stages of butterfly metamorphosis.  It's a great way to introduce these science concepts to kids through beautiful and entertaining images.  I … [Read more...]

DIY Pokemon Bookmark And Pointer

    Since the majority of people over 5 and under 50 have begun playing Pokemon Go, Pokemon©, has suddenly jumped in popularity again, despite that they have now been around for 20 years.  We love to include Pokemon© everywhere we can and I figured out a great way to get the kids off the App and into reading more. I created these Pokemon© Bookmarks that can also be used as pointers.     They are perfect for holding their place, tracking words as they read, or even as a pointer for whiteboards, blackboards, and posters. They can also used as puppets, in play dough or sensory bins.  All you have to do is follow these basic steps to create any of your favorite Pokemon© characters. I kept it simple with a Pokeball and a Pikachu to capture the kids' attention and wanted to share how we did it with all of you. You will need:Wide craft sticks  Yellow, Red, White, and Black Craft foam Yellow paint Red and black markers School glue Single hole … [Read more...]

Fortune Teller Craft Activity! #StreamTeam @Netflix #Ad

    Although my family and I definitely agree on the fact that we all love Netflix, we sometimes cannot agree on what we should watch next as a family.  We love each other dearly but we have huge differences when it comes to our taste in movies and shows.  Our weekly debates can go from pleasant disagreements to heated debates so we have been looking to find ways to compromise so we can all enjoy what we like to watch.     Since they know getting a collective answer can be easier said than done, Netflix has created an iconic fortune teller to help your family decide what to watch next. Even better, create your own! Fortune Teller Craft ActivityHow to play:Print out the Fortune Teller and cut (with help!) along the dotted line. Label the outermost triangles 1-8 and add in different genres for each. Then on the inner triangles, fill in your favorite show or movie currently streaming on Netflix that corresponds to each genre. Fold … [Read more...]

7 Tips For Planning The Perfect Picnic

    The arrival of spring means it is time to get outdoors and dine alfresco style! Eating a meal outdoors can be wonderfully relaxing and entertaining, and it can be beautifully budget friendly as well. If you want to prepare a picnic for your family or someone special, take a look below at 7 tips for planning the perfect picnic and creating a meal they will always remember! 1. Choose a scenic spot.
You want the location to be beautiful and pleasing to the eye, so consider a park or field with some nice landscape. You also want to be sure the spot has trees, so if it gets too warm and you crave some shade you have it. Check out local nature conservatories, parks, and orchards to find the perfect spot.2. Take comfortable blankets and chairs.Not everyone is use to dining outdoors, so you want to be sure everyone is comfortable. Large blankets and pop up chairs are perfect for giving everyone a cozy place to rest and eat. If you are worried about a wet ground, take … [Read more...]

Make Your Own Easter Bunny Bar Soap!

    Lately I have been on a DIY kick and have been researching different ways to make some of our favorite products, or items we use every single day, right here at home.  I was very excited to learn how easy it is to make bars of soap from scratch and how much money it can save you at the supermarket.  The best part is that you can customize them to contain your favorite scents, designs and colors which can really help to bring our your creative and artistic side.    Since Easter is right around the corner, I thought it would be a great idea to create some decorative Easter soaps to really get everyone in our home into the spirit of the season.  You too can make these adorable soaps and I think you will be surprised at how easy they are to make and how little they put a dent in your budget!Easter Bunny Bar SoapMaterials-2 clean empty soup cans 1 clear glass Pyrex measuring cup Clear glycerin soap block Food coloring or soap … [Read more...]

7 Creative Uses For Paper Towels

    When you have a spill, the first thing you might do is run for paper towels. Sure paper towels are perfect for cleaning up spills and drips, but did you know that they are capable of so much more? You may never look at paper towels the same again after reading these 7 creative uses for paper towels below. It turns out, they are pretty practical to keep around the home, and by that I mean in more than just the kitchen. Here are some uses to get you started. 1. Make herbs last longer.
If you want your fresh herbs to last longer, wrap them in a damp paper towel and set them in a cool place like the refrigerator. This will help keep them moist and prevent any drying out or wilting until you are ready to use them.2. Feed your compost bin.
Paper towels are perfect for your compost bin since they contain carbon. When you are done using a paper towel, rinse it out well to remove any of the product that was on it, shred it, and toss it into your compost bin. It will … [Read more...]