Valentine’s Day Fun

February 15, 2012 08:53 by ehouston

We have managed through another week and a half of head colds all around and today I was able to pull myself away from my own nap time to post about our card making day.  Last week I wrote about how we planned to make the wild animal cards featured in magazine and online.  It ended up being a lot of fun and I was surprised at how much of the process my almost 2.5 year old could handle.

Recently we moved one of the twin beds out of the spare room and into the play/media/exercise room – this was The Mister’s attempt at satisfying my strong urge to chuck the crummy futon and buy a small sectional sofa.  So far I like the extra seating, but my sofa longing has not ceased.  Anyway, that left me with one twin bed (we had them pushed together into a king) and a large open floor area in the middle of my craft space.  I have been loving the openness, but will admit I almost immediately filled it up with sewing projects, scattering piles of fabric from one side of the room to another.  I admit it, I’m a totally messy crafter.  So, I went in and made a space among the piles, patterns, ironing board and fusible webbing for our Valentine’s Day Card Extravaganza!  WOOT!

I found that one of my under bed storage boxes was the perfect height for me and the Little Guy to finish the assembly of his classmate cards. 


While he slept I sliced the cardstock and animal print scrapbook paper to the size indicated in the magazine.  To make it easy (at least for me) I printed two sheets of word balloons, like you see in the comics, from Microsoft Word.  They are under Insert, Shapes, in case you are wondering what the heck I am talking about.  They made for a quick write up as we came up with the greetings for each animal.  I used the ones offered up in the magazine, along with a few extras for animals they did not feature.

My biggest surprise about all of this was how well he did in putting the cards together.  I figured the most I would get out of him was some sloppy glue stick action, but he was an old pro! 


Not only did he spread on just the right amount, but at one point when I wasn’t paying close attention he stacked the pieces and moved on to the next one.  Of course, I had to straighten it out a bit, but it shocked me at how quickly he picked up the process and kept it going.  He also glued and placed most of the word balloons, but about half way through that part he grew tired of smearing and said, “Mama Do”.  So, I did.



He loved picking out which animal went with each card, but I think his favorite part was gathering them up the next day, and putting them in a little heart bag I found in my gift wrapping stash. 



He thought he was a regular old cupid!

I hope all your Valentine’s Day crafts were made and filled with, LOVE!  Now excuse me while I go eat my 4th iced heart cut-out sugar cookie of the day.  I mean, they aren’t going to gobble themselves up are they?

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Making And Crafts : Valentine’s Day Card 2012

February 8, 2012 08:23 by ehouston

This year, as in years past, we decided to make our own Valentine’s Day cards.  The difference this time around is that we are giving them to classmates rather than family.  An exciting step for one Little Dictator!  I strongly considered the cute character versions that you can pick up at the grocery store and even spied some with fun tattoos.  I did make the conscious decision to avoid candy as a card favor since I knew the kids would be sugar logged after their preschool V-day party.  I’m also the mom in charge of bringing the drinks and opted to present both milk and juice for the kiddos.  My two and a half year old has already informed me he will be choosing juice.  I guess I cannot expect any less when I don’t offer up the sugary treat on a more regular basis.  Don’t get me wrong, we do drink juice in this house, but his gets watered down quite a bit.  So, like most kids, whenever given the option he makes the less desirable choice (at least in mom’s eyes).  I am figuring that most, if not all, of the milk will come back my way…but, hey, at least I’m giving the choice! (Yep, I’m that mom!)

Okay, back to the subject at hand.  I wanted to share what our card plans are and a couple of downloadable cutie, patootie, versions I came across online.  First up, wild animal cards!

I suddenly received a Disney’s Family Fun magazine in the mail a couple of weeks ago and this was one of the featured Valentine’s Day card ideas.  It was too cool not to attempt, so we are going for it.  To get the full instructions pick up the magazine, which has a ton of other great ideas, or go to:

I love the idea that the kids get a little something and it’s not going straight to their thighs rot their teeth.  ;o)  Next up, in the same type of idea category is from Simply Modern Mom.  I LOVE this one! 

So, sweet and simple, of course!  Go to her blog for a free printable too.

Over at Our Humble A{bowe}d, Amanda has created some neat printables and ideas for giving both sweets and non-sweet treats.

With the Little Guy’s love of robots and stickers, I would have definitely jumped on this idea had I come across it first.  But….maybe next year!?!

Hope you all are having a good time decorating and thinking up fun things to do for your loved ones this month!

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Making and Crafts : Valentine Heart Wreath Revamp

February 1, 2012 07:45 by ehouston

Last year I wrote about adding a little holiday décor to our front door in the form of a heart shaped, yarn wrapped wreath


And, although I liked how it turned out I was disappointed at how much it faded into the dark color of our front door.  While our house does sit back from the road, with trees across the front, I did hope to be able to glimpse the wreath on the door when pulling in or even driving by.  Unfortunately, it was very difficult to see until you got right up to the front porch.  Dark red on dark black door = disappearing décor.


So, I got the idea to add a sort of lace doily effect to the back of the wreath giving it a white outline.  The hope was to make it pop against the dark door.  After considering many options (foam core board, stiffened fabric, actual paper doilies, etc.) I discovered stiffened felt at Joann’s craft store last week.  I had completely forgotten about this stuff and was super excited to see that I might have an easy option to work with for my idea. 


The only downside was that the largest piece I saw was only 12” X 18” , which meant I would need to put two pieces together in order to cover the back of the wreath with overhang.  At that point I was not really sure this was going to come together the way I envisioned, but the low cost and ready-to-go materials made for a project just my speed these days. 

Easy, I’m all about it. 

Oh, that might not have come across the way it was meant….but trust me, this prude meant it in the lazy way!

The next step was to tape the stiffened felt together using clear packing tape so it would not show through to the front.


I knew this was not going to be a permanent solution to keeping the pieces together, but it did work to hold them in place while making the design and attaching it to the wreath.



My first attempt to freehand the scallop around the heart wreath was with a disappearing fabric marker (greatest invention around!), but the bumpy nature of the felt and the felt tip of the marker were not a match.  So, I resorted to using blue tailor’s chalk instead.  Because I did all of this freehand, things were not perfect and I made most of my cuts inside the lines to eliminated some wonkiness and the blue chalk.  After cutting out the basic heart shape with the scalloped edge I used an oval hole punch to add the cut-outs within each bump of the scallop.  Using fabric fusion, I glued the heart wreath directly to the white felt backing.  Since the wreath is a little uneven due to the wrapped yarn, I also used some fabric piles to help weigh it down a little for a better hold.  After a night of drying I used a couple of T-pins shoved through the felt and into the back of the heart for an added safety measure in keeping the felt “doily” in place.

Wholla!  Revamped Valentine’s Day wreath that can be seen from farther away than the bottom step!


Kitschy, but fun for another year.  What type of holiday décor are you guys using to spruce your pads this year?

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Artfire Collection : Winter Rich Hues…

January 9, 2011 06:57 by ehouston

One of my vintage Valentine’s Day cards was featured in a recent Artfire Collection by The Candy Shoppe.  It’s called Winter Rich Hues and it makes me want to start getting ready for Valentine’s Day extra early.


Actually, it makes me want to each chocolate, lots of chocolate.  Yummmmm….

Don’t forget to go check it out and leave a comment.

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