Posted in community, Creativity, DIY, Gifts, Sharing Creative Works

Community Monday: “Year of Memories” Quilt (Creative Gift Idea)

Best Birthday Gift EVER!

Do you see that smile? What you don’t see are all the tears I am crying behind the camera. What looks like a quilt given to a little girl is actually a community project that my daughter, my Nana, and I created together when my daughter and I lived in Florida.

Each month, my daughter and I would pack our bags and three hours South to visit my Nana and enjoy time with her. In 2015, we decided to start making a quilt together to share a memory of our time and learn my Nana’s favorite hobby. It was so much fun venturing out to fabric shops and big box stores to find fabric and elements to include on each month’s creation. One of us would create the design. Another would execute it by placing each of the items on the square. And my Nana would sew them to the square and put them away for safe keeping.

Well, life happens and in October 2015 we had to move home to CT without warning. We left within a week of learning we had to leave there wasn’t a lot of time to wrap up three months of squares to go ahead and finish the quilt. The squares sat and my daughter and I have been sad that we didn’t keep our commitment that we said to one another about making some squares to surprise Nana and then send them to her. (I bought all the materials and we let them sit aside due to life changing so drastically from what we had in Florida.)

So you can imagine our shock when she opened her birthday present this past week and found the following quilt!

 

Let’s zoom in closer and take a look at each of the nine months and how we represented them.

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January is not winter in Florida when you come from New England, but we thought since it was winter back home it would be fun to do Olaf and represent Winter in New England and our thankfulness for NOT BEING THERE to enjoy it! We were loving our flip flip flops and sandals, and that we could still go swimming all year long down in Florida. Though the temperatures did drop a few times, we loved that we didn’t have to shovel A SINGLE TIME!

 

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February is my daughter’s birthday so we designed a cake with colorful layers to represent her personality.

 

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In March, we designed this one around the expression “April showers bring May flowers”. We also wanted to highlight that it is Autism Awareness Day, and we have two children on the spectrum within our family. My mind is a bit fuzzy, but I believe the two boys represented two little cousins with birthdays in April. While we created this in April, we already knew what we wanted to do for the next three months so we kind of cheated so we could include Mother’s Day and Father’s day. March itself doesn’t technically have a square.

 

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In April, we created this flowers that would spring forth in May from the April showers. We wanted to have fun and show different types of flowers.

 

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In May, we shared the various ways you could say “Mother” around the world.

 

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In June, we represented the various ways we can celebrate Father’s Day.

 

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For all of June, we had flown home to CT because I was hired to write a movie script and had to meet with the Producer and Author of the book the movie was going to be based upon. So we flew from Florida to CT, and had to skip our monthly visit with Nana. We didn’t come back until July 5th and that month went by so quickly that we didn’t get to fully design everything.

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We spent most of our time in August swimming at the pool and visiting the beach, so this was only appropriate!

 

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In September, we just enjoyed time with one another and had selected the following to assemble while we ran off to the beach. We’d decided we could put it together the next month and then…well, we had to move back to CT and never got to design it fully. Our idea was that God had brought us down there and given us the time together so we would show a cross to represent faith and the three girls to represent each of us. But we never talked about the background. I do love the simplicity though.

 

This was my daughter’s face as she Facetimed my Nana to tell her thank you for the best birthday gift ever!

 

Do you have a favorite gift ever or something you created the brings that memories of times together with loved ones? Tell us about it in the comments.

Posted in Creativity, DIY, Family Fun Activities, Parenting

DIY Bubble Bars and DIY Detangling Spray with Essential Oils

(Both videos and recipes were posted on Young Living’s YouTube channel.)

These are fun activities you can make with your kids to help with your bath time routine and make it a bit more fun. Watch young kids carefully. I’d recommend this for kids 5 or older, as they know not to put their hands in their eyes.

DIY Essential Oils Bubble Bars

 

 

Whether you are taking a bath for some “me” time or are getting the kids ready their bed time, these bubble bars make bath time more relaxing and fun.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup baking soda, plus some extra
  • 1 cup sodium lauryl sulfoacetate (SLSA)*
  • 1/3 cup corn starch
  • 1/3 cup cream of tartar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable glycerin
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 20-30 drops essential oil
  • Natural soap dye or food coloring
  • Wax paper

Directions:

1. Measure out all dry ingredients, and strain them through a fine mesh strainer to get rid of any clumps. Mix together with your hands.

2. In a separate bowl, measure out all wet ingredients, including your essential oils. Mix together.

3. Combine wet and dry ingredients. Mix with your hands until you form a dough with a somewhat crumbly texture.

4. Separate the dough into two bowls, and add natural soap dye or food coloring. Mix well by kneading with your hands until the color is fully incorporated. This may take a few minutes.

5. Put one piece of colored dough onto a sheet of wax paper sprinkled with baking soda. Using a rolling pin, flatten the dough into a rectangle shape about ½ inch thick, pressing together any cracks in the dough with your fingers.

6. Place the second piece of colored dough on top of the first, and use a rolling pin to flatten the dough to the same rectangular size as the first. The result is the two pieces layered on top of each other.

7.Using your wax paper, slowly begin to turn the dough over on itself to roll it up. Gently press any cracks together when they form, keeping the roll intact as much as possible. Keep rolling until you have a cylinder. YL Tip: If your roll is cracking a lot, drizzle a tiny amount of vegetable glycerin on cracking spots to help them stick.

8. Squeeze the ends in to make the roll tight.

9. Cut the roll into slices that are 1-2 inches thick.

10. For best results, let the bubble bars dry for at least 72 hours before use.

DIY Essential Oil Detangling Spray

 

NOTE: If your child or you has epilepsy, please skip this activity as Rosemary is not an essential oil epileptics should use due to its ability to trigger seizures.

This detangling spray has been great with my daughter’s VERY LONG hair. Since her hair is straight AND very thick, comes down to her toosh, and can’t be washed every day, we live on detangling spray between washes to ensure her hair is in good shape.

Here’s what you will need:

  • 8 oz. spray bottle
  • 2 tablespoons all-natural conditioner (or just use your favorite brand)
  • 1 cup distilled warm water
  • 4 drops Rosemary essential oil

Here’s what you will do:

Pour conditioner into spray bottle. Add warm distilled water into the spray bottle and shake until the conditioner is dissolved. Add Rosemary essential oil and shake again. Spritz the mixture on hair to make combing through tangles easier.

For best results, use Homemade Hair Conditioning Detangler mixture within two months.

 

Posted in Creativity, DIY

Creative Gift Idea: Seashells & Handlettered Card

It seems people really enjoyed the creative gift ideas so I am going to share at least one idea a month with you of creative gifts you can create for friends. Some will be easy and some will be hard but they all come from the heart!

This sweet and fast idea for those of you who live near a beach and have friends who love the beach but don’t live near it came from a friend who was visiting the beach and knew I loved it. The card idea came from a friend who sent it when I won a giveaway she was hosting. Together they make a really sweet gift for any time of the year!

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What You Will Need

  • The beach!
  • Small bag / change purse
  • Optional: Washy tape
  • Small sample vile
  • Cardstock or premade blank card

What You Will Do

Beach Selections

  • Pick up some sand with the sample vile.
  • Choose 5 – 10 seashells that catch your eye
  • Choose a washi tape that reminds you of the person.
  • Put all items into a small bag or change purse.
  • Handletter the person’s name on the card and include a nice note inside.