Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Christian Altered Book Art with Scripture

My daughter and I created our first altered book art projects! She wanted to enter a local contest celebrating Book Month in April.
I chose to use a Bible verse - Romans 6:23 - for my theme. "The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."
And my daughter created a Dreamland of a jeweled flower garden around a beautiful stream.
We had a lot of fun "altering" our books and they were displayed at the library for a full month. Have any of you tried this?

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Decorating with Sea Glass

We LOVE to collect sea glass! Whenever we head to the beach, we're always on the lookout.
We found this glass bottle ages ago and thought it to be perfect home for our treasures. It's topped with a leaded-glass-look cross. Since we don't live on the coast, hunting for sea glass is not a daily or weekly opportunity for us. Still, we are frequently in California, often when it's too cold to really swim, so walking and playing in the sand allows us the time to find the rocky places where sea glass likes to rest.

Not too long ago we were blessed to find ourselves on the west coast of Italy. Walking along the sea from Rapallo to Portofino past many rocky beaches, we couldn't resist to stop for sea glass. In a matter of minutes we had found more and larger pieces than in the previous five years of gathering on our west coast! [I don't know if that is the case always or it was due to heavy rains that had churned up the coast prior to our arrival.] Regardless, the kids especially were giddy with excitement at the overabundance of treasure at our fingertips! We laughed as we tossed the "tiny" specimens back – only selecting the grandest for keepsakes – but how those "tiny" pieces might have been considered precious and large back in CA.  :-)
Our original collection being enjoyed in my daughter's bedroom.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Easter Egg Stuffer Ideas for Little Ones

Ages ago when my daughter's first Easter came along she was almost one. We were excited newbie parents and wanted her to have the excitement of "hunting" for and opening Easter eggs. Of course - these things are really more about our excitement than theirs at that age, right? Well, I wasn't going to give my precious firstborn candy! Tee hee! The first thing that popped into my mind was animal crackers.
So, that is what she opened on her first Easter over 10 years ago – animal crackers and Cheerios. Just opening an egg to find a surprise inside was exciting. Well, after Easter several other mommies were surprised at my choice of stuffers – they lamented having to put candy in their children's eggs – Because that's just how it was done – and wished they had done something "healthier."

This post is JUST IN CASE, you've got little ones or toddlers and don't want to have their teeth full of sugary jelly beans either. Goldfish would be a nice treat, too, if your child doesn't eat them on an hourly basis and would consider them fun to find inside. Something not too sugary; simple and fun for a little tot. Of course, as they get older chocolate is really the best choice given its nutritional value. Wink. Wink. Or mints or money are also safe Easter egg stuffing choices. Please share your ideas in the comments!

AND please type "Easter" in the search bar on the right to see my more inspirational Christ-focused Easter celebration ideas! Happy Easter - Christ is risen!

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Customized Hat Boxes for a Baby Room

Throwback Thursday! Here are some paper maché hat boxes I decorated for my daughter's baby room ages ago, and that I featured in my book Inspirational Home:
They were the round cardboard boxes found at most craft stores. I printed out uplifting Bible verses using a pink and brown color scheme. The brown box top was painted with acrylic paint, then banded across the diameter with one wide pink satin ribbon. This was trimmed and glued on the underside. Atop it, I layered papers with the verse for the centerpiece:
It's sides were decoupaged with striped tissue paper. I cut it in strips and glued down one side, across the bottom, then up the opposite side until completely covered.

The pink box has a decoupaged tissue paper cover in a coordinating pink and brown polka dot. I printed "May the Lord's face shine upon you and bless you" from Numbers 6:24-25, on pink paper and wrapped horizontally around the sides. A pink ribbon tied simply is the finishing touch!
Have a blessed day!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Kids Christmas Tree Party Treat Tutorial

At our annual Kids' Christmas Party each of the kids made their own melted chocolate Christmas tree:
A friend helped me by keeping lots of color melts ready for all the eager kiddos:
We loaded assorted color melts into plastic bags so kids could easily squeeze out a Christmas tree pattern over three pretzels positioned on wax paper:

And then they loaded them up with their choice of sprinkles! Voila!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Letter Nail Head Art Project

A little afternoon project – easy contemporary letter crafts:
I have many wood panels laying around, so first we painted two of them. My kids both chose blue.

They chose a font letter style and we printed it out to scale. Positioning it on the wood panel, we pounded small nails right through the paper on the letter's border, an inch or 2 apart.

We tore off the paper and the kids began entwining their string of choice:
They just twisted it around this way and that as they saw fit:
And they can now enjoy their new art craft in their bedrooms. (I think they did a super job!)

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Celebrate Jesus' Resurrection

Easter is coming up. Here's little table idea for your gatherings I first designed and posted in 2008!!

These quick paper place cards can be set out for your Easter brunch or dinner whether you're hosting 2 or 20 people. The egg symbolizes the new life we have in Jesus, and the message tags make it clear why we celebrate this holiday.

"He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay." ~ Matthew 28:6

Tutorial: 
• Cut out 3 inch egg shapes from patterned paper using decorative edged scissors. 
• Print or write various phrases on coordinating solid colored paper. 
• Cut out in circles. 
• Punch a hole through each and string together with matching ribbon. I used: "Hosanna!" "Happy Easter!" and "He is Risen!"

Enjoy! And remember, you can always use the search bar on my site sidebar to find other Christian holiday ideas - 7 years worth of ideas!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Kids' Photo Ornament Keepsake Craft Tutorial

Our 5th Annual Kids' Christmas Craft Party is this week! It's one of the highlights of our month. This year we'll be doing another photo ornament keepsake. Capturing our kids' faces at these precious young ages creates a sweet memento.
We'll be using little birch disks I found at Michael's, so the supply list is short:
• round wood disks
• eye hooks
• decoupage glue
• small brush
• small portrait photo
• Sharpie marking pens (assorted colors)
• glitter glue pens (assorted colors)
• thin hanging ribbon
Step 1: screw in one eye hook to the rim/side of each wood disk. 
Step 2: ask each child to draw a picture, create a design or write something on one side of the disk with the Sharpie pens. There!–You're capturing their artwork, too!
Step 3: cut the child's photo in a circle just a touch smaller than the wood disk. (The disks I bought at Michael's were assorted sizes.)
Step 4: brush decoupage glue onto the reverse side of the disk and adhere the photo.
Step 5: let dry for a couple minutes.
Step 6: decorate and hide the photo edge with glitter glue.
Step 7: string ribbon for hanging
There you go – a cute keepsake ornament for 2014 with your child's face and art!

Monday, December 8, 2014

Making Christmas Meaningful

Our Fontanini Bethlehem village is set up and on display: 
Since we talk with our children about the real meaning of Christmas – Christ's birth – we try to have our Christmas decorating reflect it. I'm so thankful for this gorgeous set that was a gift to my family a few years ago. About 10 buildings and a plethora of accessories. We set portions of it up on our large shelves beside the fireplace. My kids and their friends can easily grasp that Bethlehem was and is a REAL place, with "regular" villagers going about their lives.
Making perfume, filling water jugs, selling rugs … all while out in the stable behind the inn the Christ child was born: 
Among our village pieces are two Romans, one of which is taking the census … the reason Joseph and Mary travelled to Bethlehem in the first place:
With no room in the inn, the couple takes up in the manger with the animals … where Jesus is born:
 Later, wise men arrive bringing gifts to honor His birth:
Their camels and tents are some of the kids' favorites. I position the buildings and let them choose a place for each person and accessory – shepherds, carpet merchant, potter, innkeeper, palm trees, cats, cows, wise men, camels, etc.:
Usually, we'll find the dog chasing one of the cats:  :-)





Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Wall Art Canvases & Photo Frames

Black and white photos floating in framed glass ...
... are paired with my own red DaySpring art canvases.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

My Favorite Two Easter Projects

"Jesus" Easter eggs:

Candle decor symbolic of the sinless Jesus and His sacrifice for us:

For other Easter decorating and craft ideas, including fun kids' projects browse my previous Easter holiday posts.

"...Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the scriptures..." ~ I Corinthians 15:3-4

Friday, December 20, 2013

Kids' Christmas Craft Party 2013

We are so excited for our party today!!

My kids' annual Kids' Christmas Craft Party is this afternoon! We have 20 some kids coming,
three craft stations, including this one for these yarn stars:
 and a treat station which includes making edible marshmallow snowmen on a stick! :-)
 Plus, games, prizes and a white elephant exchange - WooHoo! Let's party!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Please Pray for Saeed

December 4th is a day those of us with a "platform" have been asked to join together in support of American Saeed Abedini, imprisoned in Iran for being a Christian.
Please visit this Facebook page for more information: "Free Saeed", or read this letter written by his wife. Thank you for indulging me with this diversion from the usual postings on my blog.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Fill a Shoebox for Operation Christmas Child

It's that time of year!

I know there are so many wonderful charities and organizations doing great work out there. Just wanted to mention one in particular that helps my kids as we set a tone of sharing for the Thanksgiving & Christmas season. They really get into packing a shoebox for a child of their age as a Christmas gift.
Operation Christmas Child sends millions of shoeboxes, filled with toys, school supplies and toiletry items to needy kids around the world. Collection week begins today. If you'd like more information, please visit Samaritan's Purse.
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