saving holiday greeting cards

We have a really large chunk of blank wall space in our living room that becomes a canvas for all sorts of decorations and creations depending on the current holiday or season.  One thing that we look forward to each winter holiday season is filling up that space with the wonderful greeting cards from family and friends.  But what do you do with all of the cards once the holidays are over?  You could simply recycle them.  Or if you’re like me and want to save a few of them, you can keep them together with a simple binder ring.

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learning a new craft :: pysanky eggs

There is a wonderful shop called Pinecones & Needles in Belmont, MA with the sweetest owner named Anne. She recently shared a photo similar to this one of beautifully decorated eggs on their Facebook page. I was immediately intrigued by her Pysanky eggs so my daughter and I popped into the shop one rainy morning to learn more about the process.  Anne was eager to walk us through each and every step (and had the utmost patience when working with our 5-year-old!), and kindly let me take as many photos to document our experience.  So are you ready to learn about this super cool technique or what?!

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card making :: popping in by waffle flower

popping in by waffle flower stamps

It seems to be that time of the year again where more than a handful of friends (including one of our daughter’s teachers) are expecting babies to arrive anytime soon.  I played around with the “Popping In” stamp and die sets from Waffle Flower Stamps to create a couple of super cute cards, and our daughter made something to give to her teacher too.

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card making :: waterbrush + ink pads


Watercolor painting can be applied to card making projects in a bunch of different ways.  To make a beautiful card like this, I’m going to tell you how to use an ink pad and my new favorite tool – the waterbrush – to achieve stunning cards in a small amount of time.  Not only do you achieve a uniquely created image, but the technique itself can be quite meditative and soothing too.


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another way to use washi tape


This is what happened when I left some washi tape out and two little hands found a new use for them.


toddler crafting :: painted puzzles


In continuation of sharing our weekly craft dates, here’s a great project idea for little hands: paint your own puzzles!  Our friend bought these blank puzzles from a local craft store and they are sold in a variety of packs and sizes.  (I think the ones we used are this one listed on Amazon.)  The one we used are 5.5″ x 8″ in size and the large pieces are perfect for toddlers.


The set up for this activity was quite simple and each kid painted two pictures.  We used Crayola tempera paints and poured little amounts in plastic trays, then let them do whatever they wanted!  It was interesting to watch and see what each kid ended up doing.


I really liked how one mom created a masked area with some masking tape (the letter ‘A’) and then painted around it.  Once you lift the tape the unpainted area stays blank.  So cool!

This was a very simple, easy, and fun activity that little hands can manage on their own.  They would also make great gifts for grandparents and friends.

Happy crafting!


toddler crafting :: fabric markers


In continuation of sharing our weekly crafting play dates, here is a project that we did at our house when it was our turn to host a couple of weeks ago.  We bought some fabric markers and let each child decorate a shirt and a tote bag to take home.  And while the kids decorated their gear, the mommies decorated little baby onesies for one of the moms expecting a new addition this spring.


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toddler crafting :: headbands


My 3-year-old daughter and I have two friends that we meet on a weekly basis for a crafting play date.  We each rotate taking turns by hosting at our homes, providing lunch, and a fun age-appropriate craft to do together.  Today was our sixth get together and after sharing some of the past projects on Facebook and receiving such positive feedback, I thought it might be nice to share the idea with all you in case it inspires some creativity.

Today’s craft activity was decorating headbands.  (In case you couldn’t guess, all three friends are girls.)  Our friend bought these 1″ wide headbands that are wrapped in grosgrain ribbon from Amazon and they are priced at $13 for a package of 12, so each girl got to decorate 4 headbands.  Part of the problem of having three toddlers is that they generally want the same things so we were a little nervous that there is only one of each color in the package.  But luckily we spread them out on the table and each girl picked a new color to decorate as we went along until each of them had completed four — all without any quarrels!


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a little kick*ss competition

One of my favorite cupcake shops is based here in Somerville, aren’t we lucky?? Kickass Cupcakes in Davis Square is holding a month long contest for a new cupcake idea to list on their menu. The winner will get a year of cupcakes – holy icing, Batman! You can enter as many times as you’d like (read: you can confess the multitude of fantasy cupcake concoctions you possess) so let the creativity begin!

So my question is: What kind of a cupcake would you like to see a bakery make?

Here are the things that you need to supply with each of your entries (I’m using an example that someone already submitted):

Name: Winter Solstice
Cake: Dark Chocolate Cake
Frosting: Peppermint Buttercream
Garnish: Mini Candy Canes
Other: None

To enter the contest you can either drop it off or send it directly to them at the bakery, or via their Facebook discussion.

Good luck! Can’t wait to see what kind of combinations you all come up with!!

Kickass Cupcakes
378 Highland Avenue
Somerville, MA 02144

P.S. If you ever get the chance to stop by there, try the Mojito cupcake (pictured as a mini-cupcake above)! It’s a rum-soaked cupcake topped with a lime frosting. Yum-o!!