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Showing posts with label diy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label diy. Show all posts

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

DIY Busy Box

We spend a lot of time on the go between traveling, visiting family, and spending time with friends! We were always gathering toys to bring different places for our busy girl, so we decided we needed a way to just grab what she loves every time we are headed out. Enter the "Busy Box". This is where we keep all of the things Joslynne loves to play with when we are places that might not have little friends to play with or toddler activities! Whether its a hotel for a night or an afternoon with a babysitter, or when we have dinner with friends who don't have little babies, the Busy Box is easy to bring along!

The handle makes it easy for us to grab and Josy to carry around as well! Its perfect to just set in the car and be on our way!

You Will Need:

A wooden tool box (A box without slotted compartments will fit the most toys) We ordered this reclaimed one from Nevada Woodworks and were very impressed with the quality and size!
Wood stain of choice (We used Dark Walnut)
White Chalk
Fine Paint Brush
Modge Podge or clear sealer 


1. Make sure your box doesn't have any rough edges that could be dangerous for a little one. If it does, sand them down. Using a wide paintbrush, stain the box in a well ventilated area. Put down newspaper or trash bags to protect your surface. I stained all one side and allowed it to dry before staining the other side of the box. Allow the stain to dry completely.

2. Using a piece of white chalk, write the words "Busy Box" on one side of the tool box. The chalk will come off, so if you'd like to make changes, just wipe it off with a damp rag and try again after the wood dries for a few minutes.

To sharpen the tip of your chalk, use a hand held pencil sharpener! ;)

If you are not comfortable writing free hand, print the words in a font you like from the computer. Color the back of the computer paper behind the words with chalk. Place the paper onto the wood centered where you'd like the words. Use a pen to trace over the words on the paper while it is laying on the wood. Lift the paper and the chalk residue should be transferred onto the wood showing the words!

3. Using the same method as step #2, write your little one's initials on another end of the box.

4. Carefully trace your chalk words with white craft paint and a fine paint brush. After the paint fully dries, wipe off any remaining chalk with a damp rag.

5. To give your box a sealed and finished look, seal it with a coat of modge podge or other clear sealer. Once it is dry, your box is ready to use!

Scroll down to see our favorite types of items to include in the busy box for babies and toddlers!

Something to take apart and put back together
  We love this wooden stacking toy from Wooden Caterpillar

Something to chew on
Wooden toys like this are also great for teething. Here is another cute wooden teether!

Something that makes noise
Wooden Maraca. Here's a similar one!

Something to cuddle
We love our little litter of puppy stuffed animals from Hearthsong. She also loves her monkey. ;)

Something to read
Board books are great for little ones! One of Josy's favorites right now is The Little Blue Truck 

Something that lights up
 Its always mesmerizing for babies when they have toys that light up and make noise! This koosh ball and other light up ball are favorites. Light up sensory ball here!

Joslynne's first loves in life these days are animals! Nothing makes her more excited. We love our collection of wooden woodland creatures we started building up for her from Wooden Caterpillar. 

This Wooden mirror from Melissa and Doug has been great!

Something to put on
Joslynne is all about jewelry. She loves putting on these mardi gra style beads. Definitely only something to use when babies are old enough to put on and off, not chew on,  and always under supervision! ;) Here's a silicone necklace that's safer for babies. 

What would your babe's Busy Box include? We love new ideas!

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Canva Tips for Christmas Cards, Social Media Graphics and more!

My friend Elissa is here today to share more about a great tool called Canva. She creates beautiful graphics for many different uses using the site. We love how our Christmas card turned out using our family photo by Misty D Photography. Thanks for sharing Elissa! 

Canva Tips For Christmas Cards, Facebook Posts, and more!

Why I use Canva?
Because it's simple and easy.
They give you tons of free templates!
AND it's completely customizable.

Things to know about Canva:
When using a template, the photos tend to be more difficult to edit/insert/resize.
Be aware that some templates, photos, and elements are not free but they have (in my opinion) enough free templates to choose from to help promote business!

Tip #1: Take time to explore Canva’s options 
You can make elements, adjust photo trancparency, resize, and edit/add filters. There are so many options to choose from it’d be great for you to take time to explore before you dive in

Tip #2 : Working with Layers
You’ll often find yourself having a hard time grabbing the furthest back layer. If this happens I’d
suggest bringing the back layer forward to edit and than push it back when you are finished.

Tip #3 : Have a Game Plan
After you are comfortable with Canva, have an idea of what you are going to do before you start. Canva is fun to play around with but there are so many options you can easily get caught up in switching the fonts, colors ex. – and that could potentially waste time if you’re trying to market.

Tip #4: Upload your own personal photos
 I would recommend doing this to add a personal touch but they do have a great search engine if you need to use some or add layers!

Tip #5 : Simple is always best 
Reminder of tip number 3, you can get caught up in all that Canva has to offer that you might make your graphic too noisy – I would recommend trying to keep your graphics simple and to the point.

If you are looking for an easy program to help market yourself without having to pay - I would highly recommend checking out Canva.

You can find Elissa and her gorgeous photography work on Instagram and Facebook!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Under $50 {+ a Group Gift Idea} Christmas Gift Guide for Her

I rounded up some of my favorite Christmas gift ideas for Her to share! I have ordered from most of these Etsy shops before, and loved these products. I love giving meaningful, pretty, and personal gifts  for friends, sisters and moms. 

Almost all of these ideas are under $50! The exception is the Watercolor Home Portrait. I added it in anyways because its a favorite for Christmas, and a great gift to go in on with siblings or friends!

Scroll down for product links!

I love supporting other small businesses and makers! A tip to keep in mind: many small shop owners make their products themselves and can sell out quickly during the holiday rush. So, if you're looking at ideas from etsy or other handmade products order early! ;) 

Happy Shopping! 


Wednesday, September 27, 2017

How To: World Map Covered Name

When Wes and I first found out we were having a baby, we had a name picked out for a boy and girl right away. I couldn't wait to find out the gender so we could start using our little one's name. I think putting up the baby's name in the nursery was the thing I was the most excited for in the room. It was so fun to think that our little girl had an identity and we'd get to meet her soon and show her her very own room

The day after we found out Joslynne was a girl, my mom and I went shopping and I bought the materials for her map covered name. It was so surreal to think that we were going to have a little girl join our family! 

We knew we wanted to do a travel and adventure nursery for her, so this map wrapping paper was perfect for her name wall hanging! 

You will need:
Wooden letters
modge podge

1. We found our letters at Joann Fabrics, but you can find them at any craft store in several different styles. 

Lay out the sheet of wrapping paper, and lay the letters in order to spell the name on top of it. Leave enough space between each letter to trace them. Having all the letters lined up in order and going the same direction will keep the coherency of the map when the name finished. 

One map sheet of wrapping paper was enough for Joslynne's name which is 9 letters. If your name is longer, you may need a second sheet. 

2. Trace each letter with a pencil. 

3.  Carefully cut each letter out. 

4. Using a paint brush, cover the back of the first letter with modge podge. Immediately, line up the paper onto the wooden letter and carefully press it down. Smooth it down from the middle going out to make sure there are not air bubbles. Repeat with each letter. 

5. Once the letters are dry, go over the top of the letters with modge podge. If there are any corners sticking up, add a little dab of modge lodge underneath and press down one more time, before painting the top layer. 

6. Allow all the letters to dry completely. Use photo velcro command stripes to hang the letters on the wall. Place one command strip on each letter with the velcro attached, but the adhesive backing still on. When you are ready to hang, peel off the adhesive backing to stick the letter to the wall. 

Using the crib is an easy way to make sure the letters are lined up straight and centered. You can also add a piece of painters tape as a guide and peel it off the wall once the letters are hung. Start with the center letter or 2 letters and work out to each side to ensure the name is centered! 

You can check out Joslynne's entire Adventure nursery here

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

How To: Layered Gallery Wall

We've been updating our basement guest room over the last year and you might have seen the last few  posts. 

 We decided to add a gallery wall to one of the big empty spaces. We wanted it to be a little different than your typical gallery wall, so we went with a layered overlapping look. 

Since many of our guests are loved ones from our home states, we have been incorporating elements from North Carolina and Utah in the room. These watercolor state paintings made the perfect focal point for the gallery wall! 

You will need:

3 Larger frames (Ours are 12x12")
2 Smaller frames (Ours are 8x8")
Pretty wrapping paper of choice (enough to fit in the larger frames)
2 photos or art to fit in the smaller frames
Twine or ribbon
Hot glue gun
5 nails

1. Take the sheet of paper that comes in the frame out of one of the large frames. Lay out the wrapping paper and use the sheet from the frame to trace the size you need for the frame. Cut out 3 sheets of wrapping paper. 

2. Place the cut out wrapping paper in each of the 3 large frames. Place the photos or art you're using in the smaller frames. 

3. Cut 3 10" pieces of twine or ribbon and 2 16" pieces. Hot glue a piece to the back of each frame. The 10" pieces on the large frames, and the 16" on the smaller ones. I glued a piece of  felt over each end of the twine to reinforce it. 

4. Measure your wall to find the center and hammer in the middle nail. Work your way out on either side of the center nail to hang all 5 nails each 9" apart from each other. 

5. Hang the 3 large frames on the outside nails and the center nail. Then hang the 2 smaller frames on the final 2 nails overlapping the larger frames. 

I love the look of this gallery wall! You can go any direction with the colors, size, and type of art or photos you use! 

It has been so fun to update this little room in our home with quick easy DIY projects. Which one has been your favorite?

You can find our Watercolor State Paintings in our Etsy shop! They can be customized with any state, color scheme, and size.