Sunday, December 12, 2010

Advent Calendar and cute Bella!

This lit'l gal is growing SO fast! I can't catch my breath!
She had her 18 month check up and man, she shot up through the roof on her height. She is now in the 80th percentile and still 48th percentile in weight. She's growin' like a weed, but doesn't she look so cute in her Christmas dress.

She loves this little Santa ornament. She gets it out everyday and plays with it. So cute!

We also started our family countdown to Christmas. Last year we started doing 12 days of activities and 12 days of family presents. It worked out so well, I thought I'd continue it so here's what we've done so far. I'm gonna do it backwards because I'm a tad bit behind in my blogging.

Day 12- Present
This is what they got...

Day 11-Present, they got Pictureka Flipper and had a blast! My camera was down so no pics of them playing it, but they had fun searching all over for the items.

Day 10- Present
This is a huge floor book that's just like the Where's Waldo books, only it's where's Santa?
Day 9-Activity
We went down to see the lights at Thanksgiving Point and we met some new friends!
Oohing and ahhing over our new friends
Bella screaming and pointing, and at one point trying to climb out of daddy's arms to touch this...
An adorable reindeer all nestled in hay. It was so cute and so fun to see the kids so excited to see some of Santa's reindeer.
One of the light displays Logan yelled at because it was an elf fixing a house. He's very excited about Christmas and just loves the elves.

Day 8-Present
Christmas t-shirts that everyone just loved. So much that they had to wear them right then eventhough it was almost bedtime.
Day 7-Activity
We went and did our annual trip to Christmas Street, Bible Street and the Christmas Utah house in Murray. The kids had a blast and there was much laughter and cheer had all around.

Day 6-Present
We got the kids a new Wii game and they love it! It's just like the ride at Disneyland and now they can hardly wait to go and check out the ride. The great thing about this game is that EVERYONE can play it, even Noah and yes, sometimes Bella too!
Day 5-Activity
We made some ornaments. We did some fun paint ones and the artist of the family really enjoyed herself.

Kaleigh chose the colors of Tinkerbell and it actually does remind me of that cute lit'l pixie.
Here are all 8 of them done and we all had fun. We also made some memory ones with everyone's initials on them. We then each wrote 5 things we liked about this year and placed the strips of paper inside the ornaments. I thought it would be nice for the kids when they are older to open them and see what they wrote about the year 2010.

Day 4-Present
We added a new family game, Sorry Sliders. It is so much fun. The hubs and I played it that night with the two older girls and we were laughing the whole time as we each knocked eachother's pieces out of the scoring rings. Good times!

Day 3-Present
The kids got a new tent with a tunnel. They all love playing in it and they can all sit inside and play a game together. I really like items that all the kids can use at the same time. It cuts out all the fighting and we can have a fun time without the screams and tears.

Day 2-Activity
We made friend presents and Bella screamed until we finally gave her one. They are snowmen on sticks. They turned out really cute and it was an easy thing for the kids to make their friends. They got to take them to school and hand them out. They all loved helping in the kitchen. I think I might need a bigger kitchen to let us all have more room when we are all in there.
Here's Alexis trying her hand at dipping her snowman. She had a hard time at first, but once I showed her how to hold it at an angle, it was a piece of cake-or marshmallow if you will.
I made some for the younger ones to eat right then because they were drooling at the bits. I mean, who wouldn't, when there's chocolate, marshmallow and candy around.
Logan could hardly wait to eat his. He almost couldn't wait while I was trying to take a picture of him. I just love those gorgeous, big green eyes!
Here's what they all looked like when we packaged them all up. These ones were Kaleigh's. She liked the Christmas colors and went for that color scheme on all her snowmen.

Day 1-Present
The kids could hardly wait to open a present. Noah was singing and dancing until he realized that the presents weren't under the tree, they were over on the other side of the room.

And this is what the kids got to kick off our countdown-Gator Golf! They played all day and night, even Bella was whacking the golf balls all over the place. She thinks that she is one of the big kids.
All and all, we've had fun so far with our countdown and can hardly wait to finish it up. We hope you all have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

More crafts!

So, I've been a busy lit'l bee trying to get family presents done, baking, and our advent calendar has been going on too. I decided to make each kid their own personal present this year and when you have 6 of them, it takes a lot of careful planning-especially when they are home the whole month. I decided on an art display board for Alexis since she is all about the art. She always ask me where she can hang her new drawings and now she'll have a place. I just got a piece of molding and spray painted it black and did her favorite colors for the giant clothespins. I spray painted them blue and green and then modge podged scrapbook paper on top of them.
She can now hang it in her room and display all her drawings anytime she wants-at least when she gets it for Christmas.
I also made photo holders for her with the same scrapbook paper. I again spray painted wooden spools black and then added the paper.
I made cute little spirals out of wire and hot glued them to a wad of paper and stuck them in the top of the spool and voila...
Cute photo holders for my baby-well, she's not much of a baby anymore.
After almost 4 1/2 years of searching, I finally found an entry table that I'm in love with. It was on sale and in the exact color and size I needed/wanted. So, of course I needed to make some cute decorations to display on it. I'm in love with vinyl right now, so I made some cute glass blocks with a nativity scene on them. I also made some $store hurricane candle holders. I just bought a piece of glass and a candlestick and then glued them together and voila...
cute new decoration! This one is on our table in the dining room/craft room.
Here's the one I placed on my new entryway table. I can change them out for each holiday/season.

I stumbled upon this 3 pack of frames in the $ spot at target and thought I could do something with them and here it is. I just took some scrapbook paper and some chip letters I had and instant decoration. I can change it with EEK/BOO for Halloween too. Love multi-purpose decorations!
This one kinda got rushed, but I still like it. I just modge podged scrapbook paper on an old canvas I had laying around, put the believe letters on it, and sprayed it with glitter(the picture doesn't do it justice, it's quite sparkly).
So these are just a few of the projects I've done this past week. I also finished up all the in-law presents, but I can't post them, just in case they still read this blog.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree!

Here she is lovin' on the Christmas trees. She is just so cute! I love this age at Christmas time. She gets all into the lights, the trees, the sounds, the smells! Ooh, I just love my kiddos.We have a tradition of trimming the tree the weekend after Thanksgiving. And on Thanksgiving, we give the kids a small present-a new ornament for their tree. I like to take a picture of the kids holding their ornament and one of them placing it on the tree. We start the trimming with the new ornament first.
Here's Bella with her fluffy penguin. We got this one for her because she just LOVES cuddly things.
She wasn't very happy putting it on the tree. In fact she cried until we let her have it back. At least until she saw the other kids putting their ornaments on the tree. Then she was okay with it on the tree. She loves coming in to see the tree with all the ornaments on it all lit up. She squeals in delight EVERY time!

Noah, very happy that he got a train ornament this year. This cutie and his trains. Oh my!
We needed to help him put it up high-out of reach of Bella. You can always tell when we have a walking baby in the house, the ornaments start about 3 feet off the bottom of the tree.
Logan got a backpack this year and it's green-his "FAVORITEST" color of all time. He is SO excited to go to school next year and this is to remind us of that. We have been having "mommy school" and he loves it. I'm in trouble though, 'cause I have another smarty in my midst. I still need to put his picture in his ornament-we're having a hard time picking one(Logan mainly).

Laney got a barbie ornament and simply loves it! Her and Barbies are BEST FRIENDS!

Kaleigh got a performing Hannah Montana ornament. It fits her so well, after all she loves the dramatics and performing!

Alexis has an artist ornament. Fitting that it is about drawing and this year she won in Visual Arts. I think I'm pretty good with the ornaments, I picked them out last year after Christmas for this year's ornaments. Not bad, if I say so myself. Yep, there I go again, tootin' my own horn. Don't hate me 'cause I'm awesome and all! :)
Once everyone put their ornaments on the tree, we stood back, and the hubs and I realized...
we just might have to get a bigger tree soon. The thing is packed and we still have a few more years before any children will be leaving/moving out. I guess that's what happens when you have ornaments for 7 kids-yes, we do still get one for Christian every year. The hubs and I will be keeping his always and forever. I am proud and love having that many ornaments on our family tree, even if we do have to get a bigger tree soon.

New Crafts and improvising!

This fall I wanted some new decorations, but with the times I couldn't spend much money, so enter my improvising and the Dollar Store. I made this cute swag with some berry garland I already had and glitter foam leaves from my scrapbook supplies and chipboard letters hot glued to the leaves spelling out GIVE THANKS! I loved it, the picture doesn't due it justice though. I also made some wreaths for our bar stools. Again my supplies came from the dollar store and with a coupon and half-off deal at Roberts. I got the wreath forms from the $ store, and some big buckets of silk leaves that only cost me $3. I also scored some fall floral picks for only $2 for all 6 wreaths I made.
All 6 wreaths for under $20. Score, and now I have new wreaths for years to come.
I love making my own stuff. I just can't buy anything now, at least it takes a lot to get me to BUY decorations. I keep seeing stuff, looking at the price tag, rolling my eyes with "I can SO make that for cheaper" look, and then end up not buying anything but supplies to make something similar-but ending up with a way cuter decoration.

I also made Bella a Thanksgiving shirt this year. I was quite proud of myself. I am in LOVE with Heat N Bond and making my kids' shirts cuter. I can't wait to show them their Christmas shirts.
And here she is showing off her shirt and having some fun with lit'l trees just her size. Can you see the trees off to the side. They are my pride and joy this season :) ! Just kidding, but for reals, I'm quite proud of my porch trees. I have wanted 2 porch trees since... FOREVER! I just think it would be so cute to have a tree on each side of the front door on the porch. I was gonna buy some way back when, BUT... when I found out that they were like $40-$50 each(for the really nice, fluffy/full ones)I decided that was WAY too rich for my blood. So, I put it out of my mind-yeah right, well at least I thought down the road I could buy them. In enters a BRILLIANT idea- I could try and make some. So, I set off to tackle them and here's how I did it...
Bought some planters at half off, filled with some sand(so as no wind blowing over would happen), used our old tomato cages as the structure/shape of the tree, and bought some rope garland at Home Depot(75 ft for only $5). I just place the tomato cage over the planter and began wrapping my garland around it.
This is where I had to add another rope garland.
My two trees almost done, aren't they cute? I think they are WAY cuter than store bought porch trees. Now on to the last step for my cutie patootie porch trees.
Wrapping my extra strands of clear lights around them. GORGEOUS, I tell you! And Bella just couldn't stop oohing and ahhing over them. They were just her size and she loves them! I had a lot on hand, and in the end, these two beauties only cost $7 a piece. Not bad, if I do say so myself! Don't you just love when the picture you have in your head of a project outcome actually works out in the end. I LOVE it!
Here's another lit'l decoration/craft/gift you can do. We made these for the family and Eric's side as well this year. You just take 2 candy canes and wrap them with yarn around the middle. We glued on eyes and a nose, and VOILA...
Christmas reindeer! So simple, yet SO cute!

And since I made wreaths for Fall, I needed to make some for Christmas. I decided one day walking in the craft store that I really wanted to do something with bells. I have seen these bell wreaths all over the place, but holy-moly, are they ever SO expensive! Well I'm cheap, not really, but my money ALWAYS goes to the kids, so enter my need to CRAFT! I purchased 3 buckets of bells(again, half off) and went to crafting. I made a wreath shape out of some heavy duty wire I had and strung on two bells of the same color until my wreath was full. I tied a bow at the bottom with some wire ribbon I had in my stash, hung them on the bar seats again and just LOOK....
B-E-A-U-T-I- FUL!!! I love these even more than the fall ones. Every time the kids sit up at the bar they all ring the bells. I love hearing jingly bells! I made 4 of these and it only cost me $10 for all of them. I couldn't even get ONE of the store bought ones for that price, so call me Mrs. Happy!

My last new craft from this past week was another improvising decoration. Since the hubs and I moved into our first house we have had a kid tree and a nice tree. My nice tree was gold, glittery, and white. While the kids' tree had all their ornaments and mine and the hubs' on it. Then when Christian got sick a tree was done in his honor for the Festival of trees. The hubs' parents bought it and the hubs brought it home(kinda sneakily)from them and put it up in Christian's room-where it remained until he passed away. Well now, we just do the kids' tree and Christian's Peter Pan tree. I have had all the decorations from my pretty tree just sitting in a box in the storage room for the past 5 years. What a waste I thought, so I repurposed some of the ornaments into this...
A pretty ornament ball wreath. Again though, the picture doesn't do it justice. I didn't even have to spend a dime on this decoration, because I had everything already. Don't ya just love repurposing, I know I sure do!
So this is why I haven't kept up with my journaling lately. I've been busy CRAFTIN' my patootie off. I've also done a lot of other projects, but I can't post anything quite yet, 'cause they are all gifts for people that just might read this. Although, I don't think many read my rantings anymore, but that's okay. I do it for myself. It's like journaling and scrapbooking all rolled into one thing. I can't wait to publish my blog/journal into a book. It's the new way to keeping a journal. I just love it! Well, here's to wishing and hoping a very Merry Holiday Season to all!