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Monday, December 30, 2019

DIY Snow Globe

I've wanted to try this project for a few years, so this was fun to try!

For this project you'll need:

A Jar - I wanted mine pretty small, without anything etched on the outside.  I ended up using a jar of mushrooms, because it was the size I wanted and I really liked the gold lid.  I think Salsa jars would be good options as well, if you use those, Step 1 would be to spray paint the outside of the lid.  I looked at Mason jars, but they have etchings on the outside.

Miniature figures - Miniature Assortment

Glitter - White Glitter on Amazon

E6000 Glue (I read about other people using hot glue and then the figures started floating.)

Glycerin (This link will take you to one at Amazon or I found mine at Walmart in the drugstore area.)

Distilled Water

One post I read said to use "fake snow" because it's bigger than glitter and easier to see, but I tried it and it looked terrible, it would clump together on the objects.

Step 1 - Gather your materials.

Step 2: Arrange your items on the inside of the jar lid and make sure the jar will still fit over them, then glue them down with the E6000 glue.  Follow glue instructions and let them dry overnight.

Step 3 - Fill the jar with distilled water.   I thought I needed to leave room for...water displacement from my figures, but I didn't.  I had to keep adding water.  So at this step, get the jar as full as possible.

Step 4 - Add about 5 drops of Glycerin (this helps suspend the glitter longer).

Step 5 - Add 1 - 2 TBSP of glitter, depending on how big your jar is.

Step 6 - Screw on the lid tightly.

Step 7 - Gently turn your jar over and then watch the snow fall!  (I say gently because I was shaking it like crazy and that didn't look as pretty.)

I think they make adorable Christmas gifts, they are fun crafts for kids to help make and can be used as decoration during winter seasons!

Monday, December 16, 2019

Gingerbread House Decorating Tips 2019

I like the creative part of making a gingerbread house every year.  Here is my 2019 house and some things that worked great for me this year.

1. I bought a pre-assembled house, that let me get right to the fun part - decorating!  Here is the kit I used this year and I got it on sale in the store.

2. I bought extra candy.
-Sour Streamers ended up being a great option, I could cut out shapes I wanted out of the long, sugared strips.
-I got really excited when I found Candy Buttons - they were the perfect colors to me

-I used Smarties as a porch and sidewalk

3. I bought cereal for the roof.  This year I used Cinnamon Toast Crunch.  And it's a bit painstaking to shingle a tiny roof, but I love the result.  It turns your Gingerbread House into a Gingerbread Cottage!

4. I worked in the living room while watching movies.  It's kind of a long process that takes a lot of concentration, but to keep it fun, I watched Christmas  movies while I worked.

5. I used fake snow as a final touch. Some years I've added snow with frosting or powdered sugar, but I had bought fake snow for another project and used it to fill in between the house and the cardboard edges of the base and dusted some over the top of the house -  it was a perfect touch.  It looks like snow and adds some sparkle.

Monday, December 9, 2019

Painted Dining Room Chairs

These are my old dining room chairs.  I loved them, but I didn't have enough of them for my entire family and since they were antique, they were a little wobbly.

I follow @artfulhomestead on Instagram and, fairly often, she posts pictures of her super long table and chairs and I love how it looks and I love the idea that there's a place for everyone.  

I follow my local ReStore on Facebook and saw they got a donation of 50 of these "school library" type of chairs and they were $8 each.

I debated, but with my mom's help, I bought 11 of them and we made two trips to get these home.  These chairs are heavy and awkward to carry.  Step 1 was using pliers to get the disgusting carpet strips off the bottoms.  It was a huge pain and I discovered, doing anything 11 times is a lot of work!

Step 2 was sanding.  I used my palm sander to try to remove imperfections and rough up the surfaces.  This was also a pain.  There are a lot of places to try and reach and after doing about half, I didn't think it was making much difference.  

Step 3 was cleaning - some with de-greaser, soap and water.  Some with just a Clorox wipe.  

Step 4 was spray painting (finally).  I did them in batches.  Basically doing two coats all at once.  It was almost exactly 1 can per chair.  The spray paint I used is linked above and if you're doing a spray paint project, I can't stress enough how worth it it is to buy one of these spray attachments.  You just press it onto the can, it's only a few dollars and it makes spraying so much easier.

I let the paint dry for 24 hours.  Step 5 was a clear sealant of spray paint.  For the sealant, I just did one coat per chair and it went further, I think I only needed two cans for all 11 chairs.

 Step 6 was adding Magic Sliders to the bottoms.  (Otherwise they made a terrible scraping sound against the floor.)  On my prior chairs, I used the Magic Sliders that you can stick on.  Those would fall off sometimes and then you'd have one uneven leg.  This time, I learned my lesson and bought the kind you can screw in.  They have worked great - I definitely recommend them.

Then I placed them around the table and felt SO GOOD to be at this point.  It was a long process that lasted the entire summer and fall.

At Thanksgiving they were put into use and it felt so good to have enough, matching, sturdy chairs for my family to sit in!

I second-guessed my decisions some - if I really liked the chairs, if I really wanted them white.  But in the end, I am loving them!

Monday, December 2, 2019

Sequin Snowflake Ornament

For this Project You'll Need:
Popsicle Sticks

Elmers Glue


string or cord

hot glue gun/glue

drill/small drill bit

trays to hold sequins (optional)

Q-tips (optional)

Step 1 - use a dot of hot glue in the center, to glue 4 Popsicle sticks together in the shape of a snowflake

Step 2 - Drill a hole in one of the middle Popsicle sticks

Step 3 - Put a line of glue down on each stick and then add sequins.

Step 4 - Put the string or cord through the hole and tie the ends together with a knot.

I had fun making this and my mom had fun making one.  My preschool age nephew didn't enjoy it as much, picking up the sequins was a little challenging for him.  But it was super cute, I invited him to make some, so that he could give it as a gift to his mom (or anyone) so that it would be from him and a surprise.  I asked who he wanted to make one for and he said his cousin Hadley and then one for his Mom.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Potato Stamped Art

Last January, to start the new year off creatively, Spoonflower created a #7DaysofDesign challenge to help creators explore new mediums.  Day seven was block printing.  Since I didn't have block printing supplies, I decided to use a potatoes.  I loved creating this art and I loved the result.
I carved a line and triangle into potato halves.

Then I tried dipping them in ink and in paint.  I think I ended up liking the paint better.

I loved the texture and imperfections, I loved how graphic the black and white looked - I loved everything about it!

I was also excited when I saw something similar in Hobby Lobby and online at All Modern.
It look a while, but I finally put them in frames and hung them in my home.  
I love decorating with art that is personal.

Monday, May 20, 2019

Alternate Ending to the Game of Thrones Series Finale

Image result for game of thrones

Like most fans, I wasn't fully satisfied with the finale and decided to write my own alternate ending.

Tyrion looks for Jamie and finds Jamie and Cersei, under the pile of rubble, unconscious but alive. Both are revived and brought before Queen Daenerys. Dany tells the crowd they’re her two greatest enemies - Jamie killed her father and Cersei her best friend.  She says, "If I were to show mercy and spare one of the Lannister twins- which should it be? She asks Jamie and Cersei. Jamie immediately says spare Cersei. Cersei gets mean and says, "kill my pathetic brother who isn’t a whole person, and while you’re at it, kill my brother Tyrion as well." Dany gets angry and has Dracarys burn Cersei.  Tyrion steps in front of Jamie and begs his life be spared.  Dany gets angry and has them both taken to a cell.

Jon confronts Dany about murdering the innocents in the city and asks her to pardon Tyrion.  She flys into a rage and sentences him to death. She sends word that all the houses should come to Kings Landing to witness the executions and bend the knee.  Everyone comes, hoping to find a way to save Jon and Tyrion.  Dany asks if they have any final words.  Jamie says simply, "I'm sorry." [We see by his gaze it's directed to Brienne, rather than Dany.]  For his final words, Tyrion reminds Dany that her enemies are conquered and urges peace and mercy going forward. Jon asks that she spare Tyrion’s life and keep him as her advisor. She says because she loved Jon, she’ll grant his request. Tyrion is freed. It’s time to kill Jon and we see the faces of all who love and respect him.  This crowd is interspersed with flashbacks of Sansa and Arya seeing their father executed. But neither are powerless any more. Sansa has brought a team of north men that are repelling over the walls ready to attack Dany and rescue Jon.  Arya is in hiding and gets to Dany before the north men, but a moment too late- Dany says, "Dracarys" and then Arya slits her throat. Jon is burned. We see fire...then Jon walks out of the fire just like Dany did. Rumors start flying in the crowd- this is the second time he’s come back from the dead, only a Targaryen could survive that fire. Jon’s true name is whispered. And then Dracarys bows his head in submission to Jon. And starting with Tyrion, Northerners, all the Westerosi, Dothraki and finally the Unsullied bend the knee to Jon (Ageon Targaryen).

At a celebratory feast, Jon dismantles the monarchy and says each territory is free to govern itself and pledge to be part of a union of independent territories at peace, with his job to visit each territory once a year to ensure fair rule and peace continue.  Flashes of how this affects people. The North (home to Winterfell) elects Sansa their ruler, the Vale (home to The Eyrie) elects Robyn Arryn, which makes some nervous, the Stormlands elect Brienne and Jamie is at her side, the Reach elects Samwell Tarly, the Westerlands elect Tyrion, the Iron Islands elect Yara, and Dorne, elects Bronn, who likes the idea of living someplace warm and being the leader of a province.

In the end we see Jon flying Dracarys and meeting with each of these rulers, traveling with him everywhere is Arya, his chosen protector.



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