DIY Gifts for Him

My favorite nephew in the whole world and godson both turned 14 years old this last year and I wanted to get them something more appropriate since they are now becoming young men. Then it struck me, how about stuff that all young men need (bath and body items with a guy twist). The little miss and myself began making soap, filled bottles with body wash, lotion, bath salts, found some really cool charcoal loofas and found them a old school looking razor. I knew I wanted to find a unique container to put it all and that’s when it hit me, if I put it in a can I can call it a Man Can, it was perfect! Yes I love being corney!! I made all of the labels with my cricket to ensure they were personalized and I think the final products turned out pretty cool.

DIY Stair Makeover

I’m so happy hubby is back from his business trip. While he was gone I was on vacation and needed that extra time because I spent 98% of my time working on some DIY home improvements (as usual). 

This time when he walked in he was greeted with hardwood stairs instead of the dated carpeted stairs that we could never get 100% spot free. 

DAY 1:  To complete this project, I waited about 3 seconds after he drove away to run and get my handy dandy multi-tool and began ripping out the carpet. 

Once I had the carpet and padding completely pulled up I was greeted by layers upon layers of dirt buildup (eww).

Then began the long process of tearing out all of the wonderful staples both big and small that held the carpet to the stairs for probably 10+ years.😳

Once all the staples were out (ok, ok ALMOST all of the staples were out) I sanded down the stairs and kick plates. This was a lot of fun getting to see the beauty start to peek out from underneath the dirt and grime. My mom was a life saver because there was sawdust EVERYWHERE! And bless her heart, she dusted my entire upstairs to help me out.

 After painting the kick plates and sides semi-gloss white (makes it easier to clean), I stained every other stair so I could still go up and down the stairs as needed. I originally wanted to go with a lighter stain but had to chose a darker one to cover all of the stains that were permanently in the stairs.

Day 2: The next morning I stained the other stairs and marked the dry ones with green tape. When my mom came over to help she immediately asked which ones she could walk on and I told her “green means go”. After a good laugh she never forgot which step to use.

Towards the evening I added polyurethane to all of the stair treads, sat back to admire my handy work and realized I accidentally left my Redbull on the dining table at the top of the stairs! 😩 After seriously contemplating climbing over the railing for it, I decided to start working on the office instead.

It makes me so happy because hubby has made comments everyday on how much he likes the stairs now.  I consider this project definitely a win!

Beauty and the Beast Birthday Invitations

I must admit, this year’s birthday invitations are fancier than my wedding invitations were lol. But I chalk it up to having more experience with card making now vs. then.

These beautiful invitations were my inspiration. 

*Fair Warning this is a lengthy step-by-step tutorial  To get started, I went to one of my favorite craft stores “Hobby Lobby” and purchased: 

• 5.5″x7.5″ Kraft Envelopes

• 5″x7″ Navy blue bifold cards

• 4″x6″ White cardstock pack

• Embossing heat gun

• Embossing powder

• Clear embossing stamp pad

• A stamp

• Gold vellum paper

• Gold & white place cards

• Glue sticks 

• Permanent glue roller

 I used Kraft envelopes and addressed them with my calligraphy pen to make them fancy.
 I started by opening up the 5×7 blank navy card and carefully folded the outside edge to meet the middle crease. 

 I repeated this step with the other side.

For the wording I used the intro from “Be Our Guest” song and added some of my own verbiage and of course it had to rhyme. 😉 I then inserted a silhouette of the Beauty and the Beast dancing. 

I printed the invitation insert on the 4″x6″ white card and trimmed it up to fit a little better inside the 5″x7″ navy card. I used the glue roller on the back of the white card and pressed it into place.


  Now comes the embossing stage! I discovered that I LOVE embossing and wonder why I didn’t get an embossing gun years ago! 😍 I lightly pressed the stamp on the stamp pad then immediately stamped the navy card above the insert. 

  Immediately cover the clear stamp imprint with embossing powder (I chose gold sparkle for an elegant look).

 Lightly tap off the excess powder but make sure not to flick your card too hard otherwise you will make the powder fall off the stamp imprint. 

Then use the embossing gun to essentially melt the powder to the paper. (Warning the embossing gun gets REALLY hot and I accidentally got too close to my carpet and have the melted/burnt spots to prove it! 😳 Hubby luckily wasn’t mad and with a smile on his face he simply made the comment “You will do anything to get rid of this carpet and get hardwood floors won’t you?” Hahaha, it really was a mistake but given my track record with also accidentally electrifying myself with the stove after making comments how much I wanted a new stove I can totally see where he is coming from. 😋 I cut 1/4″ x 11.5″ strips of gold vellum. I measured the length for the sides of the frame. You can use the scrap to measure the length for either the top/bottom pieces (you will get 1 side & 1 top piece per each strip). I made sure to cut the corners of top and bottom frame pieces at a 45 degree angle to give it a more finished look (this doesn’t have to be a perfect 45 degree angle so I just eyeballed it). Next use the glue stick to apply glue to the backside of the strips and press them in place. 

I chose to use place cards for the outside seal (added bonus is that I was able to use BOTH the front and the back of the place cards so I didn’t have to buy another package. I used a small crown stamp that I already had and embossed it with the same gold sparkle powder. For the wording I broke out my calligraphy set and hand wrote “Be Our Guest” on each card. 

Cut the gold vellum paper in 2″X11.5″ strips (you will get 4 pieces per sheet of paper). Make sure to count how many invitations you are making so you know how many strips to cut.

  Forgive me as I forgot to take a picture of this next step. All you need to do is lay your navy card in the center over the gold strip. Fold each side of the gold strip so they overlap in the middle. Apply the glue roller to the center of the place card, place it over where the vellum meets up and press it into place.

  I love how the gold strip and seal simply slide on/off the invitation!

At this point I was torn. The invitations look amazing but I also wanted more (I know I’m crazy sometimes lol). So I also added some gold fleur de lis in the corners.  

I ❤️ how elegeant the invitations came out. 

DIY Mrs. Potts & Chip

Mrs. Potts and Chip are finished! 

 So anyone who knows me would say I’m a perfectionist but sometimes that OCD side of me totally pays off lol. I knew immediately what kind of tea pot I wanted to use for Mrs. Potts but when it came to Chip I couldn’t find one that was just right and I wouldn’t settle for a cup that wasn’t the perfect size & shape. But after about a month of searching I found the perfect cup to transform into Chip, even IF it didn’t have a chip in it. 😉  

This set of characters were actually pretty easy to complete once I had the items with the shape & sizes I wanted. 

I started with molding air dry clay around the Mrs. Potts, the sugar and creamer holders. The clay gave Mrs. Potts the appearance of her rufflie hat/lid and all of the tea set characters their rimmed feet.

After the clay was dry, I spray painted the characters a soft white color to ensured they all matched and I loved the softer color because bright white would look too new and after all they have been enchanted for seven years.  

After they were completely white, I simply took some acrylic paint and perfectly colored sharpies and added the custom paint job to give this cute little tea set the perfect look. To Lyssa’s delight I even gave Chip his trademark “chip” that contributed to his name. 

Check out the other characters:

DIY Cogsworth 

DIY Lumiere

Arm Knit Fleece Yarn Blanket

I recently fell in love with these beautiful, thick wool, arm-knitted blankets:  

 But wanted to find an affordable DIY alternative, so I decided to make my own fleece yarn then use it to arm knit a warm fuzzy blanket.

 I started with 5 yards of Ivory Anti-Pill Fleece from Joann’s.

 I laid it flat and left it folded in half long ways.

 Starting at the fold cut towards the open ends in approximately 1 inch strips. (Make sure to stop about a 3/4 inch from the open end.) 

 TOP layer only: finish cutting every other strip through the open end of the fabric. 

 BOTTOM layer only: finish cutting every other OPPOSITE strip through the end of the fabric. 

 Round out each corner to ensure a seamless look where fabric will bend.   Roll your newly created fleece yarn into one giant ball of yarn. 😄

  Now get to arm knitting. Don’t know how? Now worries! This link is AMAZING!!!

After 5 yards, I realized I wanted my blanket to be bigger so we bought another 2.5 yards and repeated the process of making the yarn. But it was worth it, because I landed up with this beauty. ❤️  

 I will admit that I spent a LOT longer than 45 minutes on my blanket but it’s also quite a bit bigger than the one in the tutorial. And after everything was said and done I landed up using the full 7.5 yards of fleece.

Halloween Cake Pops

We had so much fun at our Halloween party last night that I decided to make some cake pops to remember the wonderful and based the cake pops off of some of our outfits.
Have a safe and Happy Halloween!!

Frankenstein Lunch

I love Halloween, it’s spooky and fun. I think it’s the kid in me that loves to still play dress up lol. And that love is definitely coming out in the school lunches lately. Tomorrow’s lunch consists of a little Frankenstein sandwich, a skull boiled egg & some awesome Mac n Cheese.

Zoo Themed Lunch 2


We got a special treat at the zoo, in addition to all of the amazing animals they also had a Lego exhibit. There were 16 displays from Polar Bears to a Lion, but they also had a momma & baby Bison and I created this lunch based off of this particular display. The mom was made out of around 43,000 blocks and the baby was created from around 16,000 blocks.