Archive for the 'paper' Category

Operation Organization

This post could also be entitled “I love you, Ikea.”  Or, “I love you, Mod Podge.”

The challenge:  organize the hall closet.

A few weeks ago I was visited by my wonderful and oh-so-easy-to-talk-to friend, Jen, from Feng Shui Jen’s Way.  Jen, you inspired me to get my house’s rear in gear (which I guess means my own rear in gear).  I hope this post makes you proud!

Here is the hallway- it’s quite long.  I apologize in advance for the photo lighting- there are no windows, therefore not a lot of natural light going on. You can kind of see the closet on the right in this photo- it’s one of those old-school, folding door closets with narrow shelves that don’t hold anything very conveniently.  Great for my type-A personality.

Here’s the closet “before” (embarassing, I know):

You may notice the white tubs with the lovely pink sticky notes on them.  This was my half-a** attempt at organization.  Downside to the sticky notes (aside from looking horrid) was that they fell off.  Often.  I don’t like baskets for things like this- they look nice for a while, then they collect dust, and then they fall apart.  I needed and wanted tubs.  Ikea rocks in the tub department- did you know?

Here are the tubs in their plain, boring format.  The big ones are 5.99 and the little ones are 2.99.  They are from the Slugis collection.  See their specs here.

I wanted to beautify them a little and also make them impervious to label-fall-offage.  So I went to my paper stash and picked some favorites.

I created a template and traced it on the back of the paper so I didn’t have to worry about marker showing through.  I used a nice thick permanent marker so I could cut precisely.

Then I started the Mod Podge process.  First I painted the face of the tub with a layer of MP.  I used a matte finish for this project because I didn’t want to be troubled with glaring labels whilst trying to find something.  Immediately after applying the first layer I put a piece of paper on top.  Then I slathered it up with some MP and let it dry.

I had a little bit of fun doing this- they were just so much nicer to look at after they were papered up.  Even Michael liked looking at them.  Aren’t they purty?!

Then I made labels for them.  I made them all 6 inches across to help them look uniform, and used the same font throughout.  I MP’d the labels on and then covered them with a layer of MP to finish.

The finished closet:

Can I say that I am in organization heaven?  I love opening this closet and knowing where everything is.  And the best part is that I didn’t fill them all up, so as we need to, I can put more labels on some.

BTW, this is the very first project where Mod Podge did exactly what I wanted it to.  The paper did not bubble, it went on nice and smooth- hooray!

I am so excited that this was featured on Amy’s Mod Podge Rocks Facebook page!  Yee haw!

I’m also going to link up to It’s a Blog Party’s Show Me How Party.  Yay for links!

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Our Family Rules!

You could read that two ways:

A)  Our family RULES!  (As in, our family is totally rad- and it is)

or

B)  Our family rules (As in, here are our Family Rules).

You pick.

Up there in my header there’s a list of Things I’d Like to Make.  I need to add to it because I’ve seen some pretty awesome stuff in the last few days.  One thing this 31DBB Challenge is doing is getting me to click around incessantly on the internet.  Ridiculous.  Often it’s worth my while, and occasionally I have to smack myself upside the head and get crackin’ on something of my own.  In this case, it was the Family Rules.

I first saw this idea on one of my fa-fa-favorite blogs, The Pleated Poppy.  You can see Lindsey’s fabric version here, and her friend Nicole’s version here.  If you look at the comments on their blogs you will see that many others have made these and I am way late on this bandwagon.  But better late than never, I say.

What I like about these, other than the crafty part, is that it’s a great reason to sit and think about what you want for you family.  What are your core values?  Get ’em up on the wall where you can see them daily.  I collected ones I saw on the web and then altered and added to suit our tastes, and then showed them to Michael.  He added some more and off I went.  Actually, I didn’t have to get much- just the canvas and the orange paint.

Here is my finished Family Rules:

One thing I did differently is I totally copped out on the whole font thing.  Many of the other blogs I read did their fonts by hand.  For reals.  I’m toooo lazy, and I’m also lucky enough to own a Canon i9900, which will print on a 12×12 piece of paper.  Hindsight 20/20, I wouldn’t have done it quite the same if I were to do it again, but I am still pleased with the turnout.  (And I’d still be totally lazy and print those puppies rather than do them by hand.)

I learned, however, that white ink is not Mod Podge friendly, or at least the white ink I used is not.  See the one that says “Celebrate together”?  I wanted it to *pop* on the paper which, though it’s hard to tell in the photo, is a shimmery paper.  So I spent a ridiculous amount of time covering the blank ink from my printer with white ink, only to have it wipe off when I Mod Podged it.  (Can you use Mod Podge as a verb?  Not sure…)  For some reason the other one I did, “Say grace and clean up after yourself” did not have the same problem, so it must have something to do with the paper.  Oh well- it’s all shellacked now anyway.

Here are some close ups of the smaller ones- I had to get creative because I ran out of room, so this was my solution:

Here are all of our rules (they are not in this order on the finished product):

  1. Have fun, be silly
  2. dance, hug and snuggle often
  3. Celebrate together
  4. Say, “I love you” (lots and lots)
  5. Have an open mind
  6. Be kind and respectful
  7. Obey your parents
  8. tell the truth even if you might get in trouble
  9. share    listen    (these ended up as small ones so I separated them)
  10. Give your guest your best
  11. Mom & Dad:  remember your wedding day
  12. hands are for hugging not hitting
  13. encourage your siblings… share in their joy
  14. there’s no such thing as too much reading
  15. never give up
  16. act responsibly, choose wisely
  17. keep your promises
  18. Use your manners- say please and thank you
  19. Say grace and clean up after yourself
  20. Ask lots of questions
  21. Use your creativity
  22. Try another point of view
  23. Remember that God is Father of us all

If I get some requests I will be happy to post the names of the fonts I used- I am a total font junkie which is part of the reason I loved this project.  Such a nerd, I am.  I would do it now but I have consumed far too much BV Cab, and fear I would list them inaccurately.  🙂

I love this- it adds so much color to our kitchen, and is one of a bunch of things I’ve been doing this week to get organized and get homey before the school year starts.  I love coming home to a house with love and life, and I feel like I’m getting there.  Just wait until you see my other project from this week…. coming soon!

A Thank You Invitation Questionnaire…of sorts

That’s right- not a Thank You Note (I’m horrible at getting those done- are you?).  A Thank You Invitation Questionnaire.  Got it?  🙂

One of the blessings in our lives right now is that, while I’d rather be a SAHM and taking care of my kids myself, we do LOVE our kids’ “school” (a.k.a., childcare).  Anna really loves her teachers, and she is learning a lot from them- more than I think I’d teach her on my own.  Her latest obsession is letters- she wants to know what letter so many words start with.

Sometime soon both kids will be switching rooms, and we want their teachers to know that we have appreciated them.   So we are pairing up with my friend Trish to throw them a really nice dinner- a Thank You Dinner.

The challenge we had (other than setting a date), was what to make.  That is why I decided to give them each a little questionnaire so that they could tell me their favorites.  I think it also stirred up some excitement…

First I printed the questions out on cardstock that had been cut to 5×7.  I wanted to know what dates would work for them, what they like to drink, if they eat meat, dessert choices, and if they wanted to be casual or get spiffed up.  I combed the web for some free graphics and then got to typing.  The two fonts I used are Cochin (plain) and “onetrickTony” (that’s the funky one- I love it!).  I’m pretty sure I got them at this site.

Here’s the front:

And the back:

Then I chose some paper that I’ve loved for a long time and have never been sure what to use it for.  I had 5×7 envelopes, so what I ended up doing was cutting the original pieces I printed down so that they were about 4.5 x 6.5.  Then I cut this pretty paper to 5×7.

Then I got out the paper adhesive and went nuts.  Since the paper wasn’t double sided, each questionnaire had to have two 5×7 pieces.  I had to print the questionnaires on two separate pages.  Then I stuck the pretty paper together, and stuck the questionnaires on those.  Clear as mud?

They ended up looking like this- very nice! (sorry for the not-so-great photography)

Finish it off with a great envelope with their names printed on them and voila!  Your Thank You Invitation Questionnaire is complete!

I have already taken them to school and they were filled out when I picked the kids up that day- I think they are a little excited.  I will keep you posted with the invites and the menu- can’t wait!

Anna’s Sticker Book

This is not rocket science, people, of this I am aware.  But I thought I’d share this because it will hopefully save me (and you?) some sticker angst.  Anna loves stickers, like most toddlers.  However, she loves to wear them.  She’d like them to last forever, and this is where the explaining was hitting a brick wall for a while- she would cry huge tears at the thought of a sticker losing it’s stickiness.  For reals.  So anytime we “lost” a sticker due to over-wearing, rips, or (heaven forbid) falling off, it was an ordeal.  Enter the sticker book.  It was super easy to make and she is slowly getting into it.

I used all cardstock.  I printed a simple title on the front.   I was momentarily tempted to find a super-cute font, but realized that would have been for me.  Then the teacher in me stepped in and decided to make it with letters she might actually be able to read, so I used the good ol’ standard:  Comic Sans.  I folded the cover and the inside pages in half, and then punched holes in them with an old school hole puncher.

I added a cute ribbon to hold it all together, slapped some daisy stickers on the front, and Voila!  Anna’s Sticker Book!  When I gave it to her (complete with some new stickers) she didn’t get it.  Ah, the anticlimactic world of parenting.  However, the other night she came across some princess stickers and wanted to put one on me (Belle, I believe).  I told her that Belle would be on my shirt for a little while but then she’d end up in the trash or the wash.  How about that sticker book?  There was almost an audible *click* as I said, “…because then you could keep it forever!”


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