Monday, December 30, 2013

Starry First Birthday

We are off to a first birthday in the morning, so tonight I made the birthday boy a card that was bright and fun to match his personality!

I used white embossing with pops of colour and a colourful sentiment to match the banners. Some ribbon and a coloured mat tied it all together.

As always, I gleamed inspiration from the following places.

Seize The Birthday- Anything Goes

Supplies used (all Stampin' Up unless otherwise specified)
Punches: Merry Minis Punch Pack
Embossing Folder: Starburst (Cuttlebug)
Cardstock: Lucky Limeade, Midnight Muse, Summer Starfruit, Island Indigo, Riding Hood Red
Inks: Lucky Limeade, Midnight Muse, Summer Starfruit, Island Indigo, Riding Hood Red
Stamps: Bring On The Cake
Embellishments: Island Indigo Ruffled Ribbon
Tools: Adhesive, Mini Glue Dots, Cuttlebug

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Warm Winter Wishes

Being in New Zealand, we celebrate Christmas in Summer. However, I still send cards overseas where the temperatures are not so warm.

The theme over at CASology this week is:

Kimberley's card on the Design Team reminded me of some paper I had lying around from last Christmas. Paired with some ribbon in the shape of a scarf and a Winter sentiment, this card came together quickly. Yay for patterned paper!

All CTMH unless otherwise specified.
Papers: Nordic Christmas (CM)

Cardstock: White Daisy, Riding Hood Red (SU)
Inks: Riding Hood Red (SU)
Stamps: Scandinavian Wishes
Embellishments: Riding Hood Red Ribbon (SU)
Tools: Glue Dots, Tombow Adhesive.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Edible Christmas Trees

Lucas is always finding ideas for things to do, and one day he saw some Christmas trees made out of ice-cream cones. Of course, he immediately wanted to try creating his own so it was off to the supermarket to get the ingredients.

You will need:
Ice cream cones
Desiccated coconut
Green food colouring
Icing sugar
Lollies for decoration

All you do is mix the icing sugar with a little bit of boiling water and use that to coat the ice-cream cones.

Colour the coconut with a few drops of green food colouring and then sprinkle it over the trees.

Finish off by sticking lollies onto the cone.

Lucas was very excited about the finished product- we had a picnic dinner and these were our dessert.

Linking up with:


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Preschool Christmas Cards

My son's preschool has finished up for the year, and Lucas wanted to make a card for his teachers.

We started off with some silver painted cardstock and he painted green paint over the base. Finger painting was suggested, but this boy prefers to use a brush.

We cut triangles out of the green painted paper to form our Christmas trees.

Lastly, we cut some trunks for the tree using Christmas themed scrapbook paper.

Lucas had a lot of fun gluing the trees to the card base.

A very proud boy with a card to give to his teacher!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Sneak Peek- Candy Cane Wreath

Today over at my Close To My Heart blog I am sharing a step-by-step tutorial on making a Candy Cane Wreath.

Here is a little sneak peek...

For full details on this wreath please click here.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Advent Activities 2013

Ah, it's December! When did that happen? Less than three weeks until my son turns four and I am hoping I am organised enough to pull off his birthday and Christmas.

We put up the Advent countdown yesterday and someone was very excited.

I thought I would share the list of what we have planned this Christmas for our Advent activities. A bold number indicates a weekend. A lot of these are quite personal as we have a lot of family and friend's birthdays, as well as some events that are invite only, but it is always fun to see what people are up to over the holiday season.

I have linked activities from other websites where applicable.

I am sharing some photos from the events we have already done since I was a bit behind in getting this post up.

1st Celebrating my nephew's first birthday party and putting up the Advent Calendar!

2nd Mail out Christmas cards and make cards for Lucas' preschool teacher.

3rd Preschool craft morning and Get Santa Photo taken

5th Secret Bloggers Secret Santa Evening and go to New World customer day

6th Oaklands School Twilight Gala

7th Preschool Christmas Party and Family game evening

8th- Santa Parade and CTMH workshop plus dinner

9th Have lunch at Ballantynes and see the window display

10th Preschool craft morning at The Make Café.

12th Crafty Christmas night at The Make Café. (You can still register by clicking on the link!)

13th Candy Cane Scavenger Hunt in the evening with Dad as well as Storytimes at the Library. 

14th Emillie’s birthday party

15th Lucas’ birthday party

16th Ride the Tram in town and do the Santa Hunt at the Museum
17th Preschool craft morning at The Make Café.

18th Lucas’ fourth birthday  

19th Put up the Christmas tree and decorations

20th Watch a Christmas movie for Family Night, complete with popcorn and a fancy dinner.

21st Visit the Christmas Grotto

22nd Christmas Cookie Exchange Party

23rd Candy Cane Pancake Breakfast and Christmas Crafts

24th Christmas Eve- new pyjamas and a Christmas Story plus a movie.

25th Christmas Day

26th Boxing Day

27th BBQ with family

28th Day trip to Kaikoura

29th Outdoor Play Day using ideas from

30th Picnic and biking at Bottle Lake Forest

31st New Year’s Eve celebrations all day

I hope this enough to keep the family entertained!

If you are in Christchurch and are interested in coming to a Cookie Exchange, please let me know and I will send you the information.

Best wishes to everyone for a happy and fun holiday month! I would love to hear what you have planned for December.



Thursday, November 21, 2013

Christmas Cross Stitch

I have been unable to focus on doing a cross stitch design for some time, mainly due to the fact that my current projects are massive. I needed something small to kick start my mojo and I found the perfect little kit just in time for Christmas. I was really drawn to the little buttons and the gold aida in the kit.

7 hours later (an hour each night for the past week) I have a sweet little cross stitch that I just need to iron and frame and I will have some Christmas décor.

Close up- I love those buttons!

Linking up with Show and Tell.

 Show & Tell Thursday's

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Black Tie Wedding Card

I always love weddings, and I am thrilled to be a bridesmaid this weekend for my sister's wedding. I knew I wanted to make her a card, and when I saw the Dynamic Duos challenge this week I thought it would be a perfect theme!

Black Tie Week is a perfect time for a wedding card- I was inspired by a card Barbara had in her gallery and made this card:
I used some black satin ribbon I had lying around and paired it with two wedding stamps. I stamped the word art in Black and the sentiment in Slate, as well as matting the decorative piece on Slate cardstock. A couple of silver jewels added some extra bling to the card.
Supplies used:
Close To My Heart: Black ink, Slate ink, Slate cardstock, Silver Sparkles.
Stampin' Up: Love and Laughter stamp set, Wedding Words roller stamp, Mini Glue Dots.
Miscellaneous: Black Satin Ribbon.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Happy Birthday Mum!

We have celebrated my mum's birthday today, and of course a card needed to be made.

I looked online for inspiration, and am linking up with the following challenges.

Just Add Ink #191- Just Add A Sketch

And Use It Tuesday- use anything sticky from your stash!
The sketch is so pretty, and goes well for a feminine birthday card. I pulled out some Jillibean Soup journaling sprouts that just happened to have a scalloped edge and a subtle doodle border, as well as a baroque-style sticker and pearl dots that are four years old. Somehow, my stash never seems to get smaller though!
The centre sticker and the background paper reminded me of the blue centre of the CASE study pinwheel, so that was what I decided to work around. I also found this adorable yellow pin that I wanted to use as another element of the CASE study challenge that really stood out in the picture. I recreated the banner as well, since I loved that touch on the original.
I flipped the sketch upside down in order to use the pin and banner as my "bow" flourish on the card.
Here is the finished card:

Happy Birthday to my wonderful mother- here's to another fabulous year!
Supplies used:
Close To My Heart: For Always Assortment.
Craft Creations: Adhesive Pearls.
Creative Memories: Hummingbird Paper Pack, Earthy PP Stickers, Cloud Cardstock.
Jillibean Soup: Spotted Owl Soup Journalling Sprouts.
Kaisercraft: Blae and Ivy PP.
Stampin' Up: Soft Suede ink, Soft Suede cardstock, Teeny Tiny Sentiments Stamp Set, Bashful Blue Ribbon.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Off To School!

Tomorrow we celebrate the birthday of a boy who is turning five and off to school! I wanted to create a school themed birthday card for him.

I always look at blog challenges for inspiration these days, so I am linking up with:

Use It Tuesday: Stick it- time to use up your sticky stuff!! We are talking stickers, tape, anything with adhesive!!

The Memory Nest: Crafty Creations #5.

And Freshly Made Sketches:

My hoarded school stickers came in handy for this one. I have had the school kit since 2008 when I started my husband's childhood album.

I used the alphabet stickers for two of the bold stripes, and the background paper is from the same kit. Triple matted to really emphasise the colours since no stamping was used on this card and I wanted it to still be interesting. I also used a chipboard "5" sticker that I have had for at least three years.

*sigh* I just realised that the patterned paper is upside down. I hope he still likes it!

Thanks for stopping by. It is a long weekend here so I am hoping to get lots of craft time in.

Supplies used:
Basic Grey: Cupcake Chipboard Die Cut Stickers.
Bazzil: Breaker Bay Smooth cardstock, Sour Lemon cardstock.
Creative Memories: Primary School Kit, Custom Cutting System.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Preparing For Christmas

How on earth is it November already? I am feeling rather slack as I still haven't finished Adam's baby album from July. But at least I feel like I am one step ahead of Christmas this year.

As part of my Pinterest Resolutions, I vowed to get ready for Christmas in November. I thought I would share this wonderful guide from The Complete Guide To Imperfect Homemaking. Kelly is an amazing blogger and I wanted to share my spin on her helpful checklist.

First on the list is a deep clean- which is a completely separate item on my Pinterest Resolutions and will be getting its own post.

Getting a Christmas photo taken has always been on my list- the first year was a breeze but now with two boisterous boys this year could be interesting!

I love decorating my house and so the next item on my list of things to do will be to create some Christmas décor. As we have Lucas' birthday a week before Christmas I tend to decorate the house on the weekend before Christmas so that Lucas doesn't have Christmas items mixing with his birthday party decorations. I have a beautiful cross-stitch to finish, so this gives me some time! We have an advent calendar that goes up for the boys to check their task each day. We will also be hanging up Christmas lights this year, but that is one of hubby's jobs.

When the house is looking good, then I think I need to look good too! I have booked in at Surreal Hair and Beauty for a cut and colour- some much needed me time and a break from the Christmas rush will be lovely.

I have yet to decide what the boys will be wearing this year, but I won't be buying a new outfit for everyone as the list suggests since we have plenty of dressy clothes. However, the boys do need new socks and undies, which I will be grabbing in the Farmers sale this week to avoid the malls in December.

Setting the date for parties is a big one here as we have Lucas' birthday as well as two other family birthdays in December. We also have social events each year, and my husband kindly volunteered our house for some of the festivities. All of our Sundays in December are already booked up and so making sure my diary is up-to-date for each week has been really helpful.

As well as having enough birthday food, we need to have some freezer meals and the pantry stocked. I usually do a slow cooker meal each Friday, so I will be doubling this and putting half in my Tupperware to freeze. I also have discovered that I can convert my Flybuys points into supermarket gift cards, so that takes care of the Christmas stock up for all my pantry items.

I have organised a Secret Santa for everyone in my immediate family and have already bought presents for each of the nieces and nephews. I am keeping track of what I have purchased using a simple document in Microsoft Word. I have to make a few of the gifts for in-laws but that will also be covered in a separate post.

Finally, I need to plan the activities for our Advent Calendar this year. I do a December Daily album each year, and it is fun coming up with items to do. We always include things like making cookies, seeing Christmas lights and watching a Christmas movie, but I would love any suggestions of things you do as a family at Christmas. I bought some adorable Red Mini Pegs to use on the calendar this year, now I just need ideas!

I hope this helps you to get motivated and start planning some of your Christmas tasks. I would love to hear what you have planned for your Christmas, as well as any tips for getting organised.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Floral Sympathy card

Words are never enough when someone loses a family member. Making a card is one way I can let people know I care, but I always feel so helpless in these situations.

This is a card for a wonderful woman in my life who recently lost her mother.

I am joining in with a couple of challenges for this card. the first one is CASE Study, where the inspiration this week came from this photo.

I really liked the blue, white and yellow combo in the background and it instantly reminded me of some paper I had. I have used the paper for the background and pulled out the colours to use on my flowers. I stamped the image in grey and then coloured it with my markers.

I am also joining in with An Inky Situation.

Suplies used:
Close To My Heart: Slate Ink, White Daisy card base.
Creative Memories: Seasons Paper Pack, Turquoise Cardstock.
Stampin' Up: Apothecary Art stamp set, Teeny Tiny Sentiments stamp set, Tempting Turquoise marker, So Saffron marker, Certainly Celery marker, Lacy brocade embossing folder, Labels Collection Framelits.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Our Halloween Activities

It has been a fun day here at our place. We don't traditionally celebrate Halloween by dressing up in costumes or doing trick or treating, but I still wanted to do a few fun activities for the boys.

When the boys came out for breakfast there was mummy bandage toast and ghost milk waiting for them.

Lucas was doing his best spooky face.

Lucas then went off to preschool- I made him a Halloween themed lunch but forgot to take a photo of it! He had a mandarin that I drew a pumpkin carving face on, which I thought was pretty cool.

After preschool we went to the library to get out some spooky stories. Then we got home and made some funny face biscuits using Superwine biscuits, some icing and The Natural Confectionery Company Lolly Disguises. Lucas loved choosing which funny feature to put on each biscuit.

We went to the local Light Party at 4pm. This was a great alternative to Halloween and we got to see a magic show, go on the bouncy castles, get face painting done and have an ice-cream.

Guess who wanted to be Spiderman?

Back home, we had pumpkin soup and pumpkin lantern quesadillas.

Finally, a reading of the spooky stories before bed.

Goodnight, my little monsters.

Linking up with Real Family Fun.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Wardrobe Wednesday

Now that I finally have some clothes I feel good about wearing, it is time to start joining in with Wardrobe Wednesday!

My sister was my shopping partner, and picked out this t-shirt for me. I never would have chosen by myself, but I really love it on with my new Watermelon 3/4 pants.

Paired with my new black flats, some blue bracelets, and some sweet floral earrings that I won, my outfit was complete. All within my SAHM budget thanks to my birthday gifts of accessories and shoes. Perfect for a spring day, and a step out of my comfort zone. However, I think this is going to be one of my favourite go to outfits from now on.

Have you ever had someone pick out something for you that you love but would have never chosen yourself?

3/4 Watermelon Pants (KMart), Floral Top (KMart), Black Flats (Puma), blue bracelet (gift), earrings (Subhadras).

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Ninja Bake 2013

I have been busy today celebrating my birthday, but it has also been an exciting day due to the fact that I took part in The Sisterhood's Ninja Bake 2013.

I was assigned a few people to bake for, and also ninja-ed some others that I knew could use a pick me up. Friends with sick children and a couple with a pre-schooler and new baby were left a package, as well as people who I have never met before and know nothing about apart from their name.

My packages included Peanut Butter Cookies with Chocolate Filling, my brownie, and Rapberry Slice.

I wasn't seen by any of the recipients and it was so much fun giving to others on a day I would usually be stuffing myself with cake! Although I did go out for lunch and have cake anyway.

When I got home, I discovered I had been ninja-ed myself!

A great day, spreading the love and the message of The Sisterhood. It felt great to be on the receiving end too! I hope my packages put a smile on someone's face today.
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