Infant Painting – Happy Valentines Day!

Since the hubs was at an all day wrestling tournament, I had the pleasure of being able to spend my Valentines Day with the cutest 6 month old I know!  (He is my nephew, so I might be a little biased)  I love getting to spend time with him, and it was nice to be able to give my sister and brother in law some time out of the house.
Being Valentine’s Day and all I thought it would be fun for us to make a project for mom and dad while they were out.  But what kind of project could I do with a 24 month baby?  I was able to find all kinds of recipes for edible finger paints, but I wasn’t sure that was the best way to go.  He has only just recently started foods, so even though the paints are edible he hasn’t had any of the ingredients.  Handprint projects are always fun, but that wasn’t really something he could do on his own, it was a more Auntie directed project.  So I was off in search of something we could do that was mess free and involved some independence on his part.
Off I went to Michaels, of course with my 40% off coupon in hand, for a few materials.  I settled on a small canvas and some paints.  I pulled out some painters tape and spelled out LOVE, how Valentine appropriate.

Canvas, painters tape, and a little bit of paint

I put dabs of paint in random places all over the canvas, and I sealed it into a large gallon sized plastic bag.

Spread out the paints
Place inside of a gallon sized plastic bag and seal closed.

I grabbed the boppy, and figured I would first see if he would “finger paint” through the bag.  He was somewhat interested, but no overwhelming response.  So it was time to brainstorm a better option…

He is a master at tummy time, but wasn’t too enthused
Definitely succeeded in squishing it around somewhat

What’s better than the Johnny Jump up!  Now that he loves, and clearly couldn’t tell that he was doing work! (sorry for anyone bothered by the blurry photos, it was intentional to preserve his privacy :))

Better way to go!  He jumped all over that paint!  And it was total mess free!

After I put him down for a nap, I took the finished project out of the plastic bag and pealed off the painters tape.

Finished project inside the bag, zero mess to clean up
Slid it right out of the bag
Peal off the paint, and tada!  Adorable

Very colorful with lots of texture.  Good work kiddo!
How did you spend your Valentine’s Day?


Shared with Made for Kids Link Party

Finished Wall Art

Happy Valentine’s Day Everyone!  I hope you all had a chance to love up on your favorites.

Because of his practice schedule I didn’t get to see B today, but we made up for it yesterday!  He cooked a delicious meal, (steak, loaded mashed potatoes, and fresh green beans, yummmm!), gave me some pretty flowers, and promised a weekend away at an adorable little bed and breakfast in RI – to be cashed in on sometime late March, early April.  Can’t wait for his season to be done, and a break from coaching…for a few months anyways!  Love that man with all my heart, and I couldn’t be happier to spend another Valentine’s Day as a big puddle of mush.

He knows me well, I have a soft spot for every Daisy 🙂

Today was a pretty fantastic day!  Waffles and coffee at work with some lovely co-workers was the perfect way to start the day.  Not to mention the 60 degree weather!  Even though tomorrow is supposed to be back to freezing, a little hint of spring was a welcome surprise from mother nature.  And today not only marks a day of love, but also marks 5 months since my last seizure.  I recently was diagnosed with a seizure disorder, after having two grand mal seizures out of the blue.  Since the second one I have been on medication and have (knock on wood) not experienced anything since.  One more month and I can drive again…I’m excited, and feeling great!  No words can describe how scary and confusing the seizures have made my life, but I’m finally feeling back on track!

Since B was off being a good coach tonight I spent the night finishing up my Wall Art (click for the tutorial), listening to love songs on Pandora, and eating smoked cheese.  Worked for me!  I picked up a couple plain black frames at Ocean State and got to work!

After checking to make sure the canvas fit in my frame, I pulled out what grey paint I had left from my sample.  Remember I am trying to match the bookcase I painted with the Martha Stewart Anvil paint sample.  That sample made it through a bookcase, small areas on my canvas, and the frame!  Bargain!!

Here it is after 2 coats of paint:

I’m loving the way the painting looks inside!

Here’s how it looks hanging on the wall (please ignore the hideous wall paper…we’ve already discussed how badly that needs to go!):

 As you can tell from the last picture, it wound up in my bathroom.  Not the original plan, but I’m loving it right now!  Wait for the full reveal soon!

As you can also see in the last picture, I was also working on an adorable bathroom topiary today.  Here’s a sneak peek…but be sure to come back for the full tutorial in the next few days!

Thanks for stopping by everyone, hope cupid was good to you!

Simply Living

Home made valentines

Sundays lately for me have been coffee and uninterrupted blog time, followed by laundry and homework and overall relaxation.  Today there’s a side of football.  I really have no interest in the Superbowl since the Pat’s aren’t playing, but if putting up with a couple hours of screaming football fans means I get to see B, then football it is.  Have I mentioned lately how ready I am for his wrestling season to be over…I miss our quality time!

Anywho, speaking of that adorably irresistible man, I promised in my Valentine Mailbox post that I would show you all how to make the Valentines.

Last week on my Stuff I like Sunday Post, my #1 was the Valentine Art work Maggie created over at Black and White.  I gave her idea a spin, and here is my resulting tutorial:

I use paintbrush, because it’s free to download and easy to use, so the first step is to decide on what size you want your work to be.  Because I was creating small approx 3×3 Valentines, I decided to go with 800 px.

Next it is time to click on the text box and decide what to write:

I made a different Valentine for each of the 14 days in February leading up to the big day.  For this tutorial I’ll show you what I did with “I love you to the moon and back again” a cheezy saying we use a lot.

Write your phrase in the text box, making sure that it is long enough to fill your entire canvas.

Now it is time to play around with your font, keep playing around until you find something fun that you like.

Next, play around with the color.  To do this, select the words you want to change, go to Font, show colors, and the color wheel will appear.

Here is a sample of what mine started to look like:

Now paste your text onto the canvas, and its time to save.  When I save my file, I like to save it as a jpeg since I know that is accepted as an image on most hosting sites.

Now open up a new word document.  Go to Insert, Picture, AutoShapes

A small box will pop up on your screen, click on the Autoshape button, and select heart.

Now draw the heart to whatever size you like, because I was making individual Valentines I chose a small 2.5/3″ x 2.5/3″.  Double click on the heart and the format AutoShape box will show up.  Click on the drop down box for Color, and select Fill Effects:

Click on the tab at the far Right that says Picture:

Click on select picture and find the jpeg that you saved.

Here is what your heart looks like with an outside line:

I chose to have mine look more like Maggie, and remove the line.  Double click on the heart again, so that the Format Autoshape Box pops up, under the Line Color, select the drop down menu and select No Line.

Now your Valentine is complete!  I printed out the images, here is what a close up of one of mine looked like:

I then cut them out, cut out a heart in a bigger piece of Red paper, glued on the words, and wrote a personal message on the back:

One for each day, and it was easy as pie:

But, I couldn’t stop there!  In the spirit of Valentine’s Day Decor, I decided to make a bigger one to put in a 5×7 frame.  I followed the same steps as above, and printed one with an outline and one without the outline:

Sorry for the poor photo quality!  This time I decided that I like the heart with the subtle pink outline:

I then cut out the shape, cut a rectangle of Red paper to fit inside the frame, and used double sided tape to attach the heart in the center of the paper.

Last step was to pop it inside of my frame and sit back and enjoy!

Even though all of this was a little time consuming, I love the outcome, and so far B has loved getting a little love note every day!  I even went the old fashioned way and popped them in the mail so that he got a “real” piece of mail every day to open.  I do love this time of year…

I was featured at:

The DIY Show Off

Simply Living

Love Letter Mailbox

With an early release from school today, and an already announced snow day tomorrow…I think it’s safe to say New England has been brutally stomped with snow once again! I haven’t worked a full work week since the new year started…hello winter. This time I’m fully embracing the snow day, Margarita in hand, and a fun project to work on tomorrow. Yes please!

Today’s project is super simple, but pretty darn cute. The other day when I was perusing Target’s $spot I found some pretty cute little mailboxes. Very small, but what better use than for some love letters? Even though Valentine’s Day isn’t the only time you should be showing love and affection, I love all the ideas it inspires! I certainly love on B every day, but will take every hallmark opportunity to focus on that hunky man.

All the materials that I needed – $1 mailbox from Target, Letter Stickers, and Decorative Stickers.

Next I wrote Love Letter on once side with the sparkly letter stickers.  I wanted it to say “Love Letters” but alas, I ran out of space.

Then on the end I wrote XOXO, gotta love those hugs and kisses.

On the other side I added our initials.  I positioned it in the corner so you could see it with the flag both up and down:

 Next I added the embellishment stickers to each side:

 I will most likely coat the whole thing in a thin layer of Mod Podge just to make sure all the stickers stay in place long term.

Here is what the whole thing looks like with my homemade Valentine inside:

B gets one of those homemade personalized Valentines every day up until the 14th.  I’ll post the tutorial later this week, so stay tuned!

Love is in the air!

Simply Living

I was featured at:

Undeserving Grace

Valentine Topiaries

Hi All!  With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, I have a couple more Valentine related crafts up my sleeve.  And I can’t wait to share them with you!  First up is a cheezy yet cute Valentine Topiary.

All the materials I used were terra cotta flower pots, paint, paintbrush, pencil, scissors, two unsharpened pencils, yarn, glue gun, two empty ribbon rolls, two Valentine Pillows, and heart fillers.  You can substitute materials, or leave out others, totally up to you!

The first thing I did was paint my pots, I decided to paint the actual pot white, and paint the saucer underneath pink.

Paint the pots white

I used a patio paint that is specifically for ceramic and other outdoor type materials, this was perfect for the terra cotta pots.

I used patio paint, which was perfect for the terra cotta pots

Make sure that you paint inside the rim, at least a few inches, just to make sure that no unfinished pot shows through in the end.

Paint just inside the edge

Next I printed each word I wanted to use, in a special font on the computer.  I chose Love and Hugs.  Once I had printed it, I cut out the word, and used transfer paper and a pencil to trace the word onto my pot.  Here is how it looks with the word love.

I used transfer paper to trace my letters onto the pot

Then I used my pink paint, and a very thin paint brush and filled in the letters. 

Itty bitty paintbrush and pink paint

Make sure to let the paint dry before doing another layer, I used about 3 layers of pink paint.

 I used the same technique for my pot that says Hugs.

 Then I took my unsharpened pencil, and glued the yarn onto the end.  I then wrapped the yarn around the whole pencil and glued the other end to the eraser.

I wrapped an unsharpened pencil in yarn

Now it was time to assemble.  Here are all of my supplies laid out.

All my supplies

The first thing I did was to lay my pot on the saucer, and make a pencil mark through the hole, to mark the center.

Make a mark with your pencil through the hole so that you can find the center

Now I took the pot off, and made a dot of glue with the glue gun over my pencil mark.  Stick the yarn covered pencil in this dot of glue.  If necessary you might also need to do a layer of glue around the pencil to make sure it is secure.

Stick the pencil onto the saucer with hot glue

Hold the pencil in place for a few seconds while the glue solidifies.  Here are what mine look like.

Slide the pot over the pencil so that it rests in the saucer.

Slide on the pots

Next I slid the empty yarn holder over the pencil and inside of the pot.  This just takes up more room so that you have to fill less space inside the pot.

I used an empty ribbon spool as a space filler

Now I took my pillow (thank you dollar bin at Target!) and cut a small hole in the bottom.

Cut a hole in the bottom of the pillow

I then slid the pillows onto the top of the pencil.

Slide the pillow onto the pencil

Then I grabbed the purple hearts I was going to use to fill to pot. (again, thank you dollar bin at Target!!)

I used purple hearts from Target as a space filler

Now I filled in the pots.  One box of filler was enough for both of the pots.

Here is my finished product and a couple of close ups.  Cute huh?

 I love how they turned out, even with my incredibly unstable painting hand!

Simply Living