Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I Get Stuff Done When I Procrastinate--Unimportant Stuff

Did I mention that my Mama Llama was flying in to celebrate Thanksgiving with me?

Yeah, well, about that.

She missed her plane.

Can you believe that? Who misses their plane?!!!

Well, apparently my Mama Llama does.

She was driving to the airport, she got halfway there, and then she realized that she forgot her purse. Clearly she wasn't going anywhere without her purse, so she turned around and the rest is history.

She'll be flying in tomorrow now, a full 24 hours after her scheduled flight, but at least she's coming. She had to pay $170 to reschedule her flight. The worst part about that, is that she bought flight insurance on her original ticket, but forgetting your purse is apparently not an acceptable reason to miss your flight.

So she's supposed to get on the plane without her purse? How is that even possible with the check-everyone-for-ticks and bombs tight security we've got going on these days?

Seriously. What's the point of buying flight insurance?

The moral of this story is never buy flight insurance.

Oh yeah, and make sure you have your purse when you're going to the airport.

Mom. Are you reading this? You better not be! You better be on your plane. Get your purse and get on that plane, dang it!

So, since my Mama Llama isn't here yet I had extra time to procrastinate on my cleaning today.

So, I finished this.

It's a magnetic Christmas Countdown Good-Deed-A-Day Calendar.

Wow, that was a mouthful.

Want to see how I made it?

First I gathered my supplies. If you want to make it you will need: 1 12x12 scrapbook frame (minus the glass), 1 12x12 sheet of metal, 1 sheet of 12x12 scrapbook paper for the background, 5 sheets of coordinating scrapbook paper, 25 magnets, 25 clear flat marbles, chipboard glitter letters and a few sheets of coordinating card stock.

In place of the 12x12 scrapbook frame and the separate sheet of metal, you could also just use a magnetic board with a 12x12 magnetic area. If I had it to do over again, I would definitely go that route because the metal didn't fit perfectly into the frame, so Peanut Head had to attack it with his tin snips. That was pretty scary because that stuff is sharp when it's got a smooth edge, let alone after it has been worked over with the tin snips.

First I put lots of Photo Tape on the sheet of background paper so that it would lay down and never move again.

Hey, that sounds like a movie title.

Here it is. You can see that it didn't fit perfectly, but that's okay because that little bit will be covered up by the frame.

This next part is a little tedious. You will need to cut 50 2" squares out of each of your five scrapbook papers. That is, you will need 10 2" squares from each piece of pattern paper.

You will also need to cut 25 2" squares from your coordinating card stock. As you can see here, I cut my 25 2" squares from chipboard, which was a bad idea. It isn't necessary to have the squares that thick, and it makes it harder for the magnets to do their job when they have to go through that extra thickness.

After you get all the squares cut, you will want to ink the edges with a sponge dabbed in ink, and then scraped along the top edges of your paper squares.

When you're done, they look like this. Vintagey. Or, as The Barefoot Contessa says, dirty.

Really, what this does is gives the paper a bit of depth.

And it looks dirty. But I like dirty, so that's okay.

Next, I took 5 squares from each pattern, a total of 25 squares, and I laid them out on the board so that they would look nice, but not be too patterny looking. Randomy instead. All technical terms, of course.

I found the exact center of my board and started working from there. I did a minimal amount of measuring.

I so dislike measuring, which is why I usually measure once and cut twice. Bob Vila would be so disgusted with me.

As I was saying, I started in the exact center and then eyeballed the rest. It's a tinsy bit tippy, but it's good enough for me.

I nailed the squares down with excessive amounts of Tape Runner because, again, I do not want them to move, ever.

Next, I gave my frame a couple coats of watered down paint, so it would look more rustic.

Shabby Chic, I believe is the correct term.

Although if it were truly Shabby Chic, I would have tossed it about in some gravel, and maybe rubbed some dirt on it too.

But I don't like dirt.

Here's the next step. These little squares are going to be the Good Deeds for each day. You'll want to take a piece of card stock and a piece of pattern paper and glue them together real good. Repeat 24 times.

Again, I used my Tape Runner and I used way more than I would ever use if I were scrapbooking. Because I don't want the paper to moo . . . Oh, never mind. I think you get the idea.

Anyway, remember how I told you I used chip board and that was a bad idea? Well, here's another good reason to convince you to use card stock instead of chipboard. You don't have to paint the card stock. It took me extra time to paint all those little squares. So not fun.

Next was the really fun part. I got to make up good deeds for my kids to do each day and stick them on the backs of my cute little squares. That part was so much fun, I can't even tell you.

Clean the baseboards is one of the good deeds. I'm so excited to have clean baseboards once a year.

And another one is to make a special lunch for Daddy to take to work. Hee hee. I'm thinking he needs a Lunchable, a peanut butter sandwich with sprinkles, and some Pixie Sticks. Oh, and a juice box. This is so much fun!

Of course, the girls are already complaining that it's not a treat-a-day calendar.

"Where's my treat, Mom? Don't I get a treat for doing something good?"

"No! You get to be a better person and do nice things for people. You get to build character."

They're so not into the building character part. They're going to do it anyway. Even if it kills me.

Once all the good deeds are done, you stick them on the calendar with the marble magnets that you are going to make. You do remember how to do that, I hope? Go here if you forgot. The only thing that's different is that you're going to put sticker numbers on the paper circles before you adhere them to the magnets.

Pretty cool, huh?

Oh yeah, don't be dissing me for posting this before Thanksgiving. I have none of my decorations up, and I'm not playing the Christmas music yet.

Happy Thanksgiving, Turkeys!

Several people have asked me what all the deeds/activities were that I put on my calendar, so here's that list:

Shovel the sidewalks for a neighbor.
Make a special lunch for Daddy to take to work. 
Write thank you notes to let others know how much you appreciate them.
Donate something to the animal shelter.
Dust for mommy.
Put some money in the Salvation Army bell ringer's bucket.
Make and send a holiday card to someone.
Watch a Christmas movie with your family.
Read the Christmas story.
Put bird seed out for the birds.
When Daddy comes home from work, bring him his slippers and cuddle with him.
Organize something in your bedroom or some of your toys.
Take some treats to a neighbor.
Give someone a compliment.
Scrub the baseboards.
Make a paper chain to decorate your bedroom.
Write a thank you note and draw a picture for your teacher.
Buy an anonymous gift for someone less fortunate than yourself.
Eat a candy cane.
Do a chore for someone else.
Give everyone you see a smile today.
Do something nice for a member of your family.
Call a friend or relative who lives far away, and wish them a happy holiday.
Tell someone you love them.
Do something nice for someone anonymously.

I hope this helps!


  1. Another great craft idea!!! Keep them coming:-)

    I hope your mom makes this flight and you have a great Thanksgiving:-)

  2. Hope your mama llama gets there alright. I have made my list for this project. I am going to pick it up after work today. I can't wait for the good deeds part! We need to work on some of that!

  3. I like that idea! Have a happy Thanksgiving!

  4. Ohhhh! I love this project and I LOVE THAT PAPER!!!! Where'd you find that paper?!?!

    PS, new chapter on the Dog Hair Cut saga...

  5. Wow...that is so cute!! Thanks for the tutorial!

  6. Fabulous idea. I do need to make me one. I've thought over and over that I need a countdown this year. Something that will give my kids a reason to do something nice and think about the true Christmas spirit. The last two years I taught school and Christmas was just not what it should be. You have inspired me.

  7. I love it! Of course, I will never make it. But I am still lovin' it! Okay, maybe someday I will. When velcro girl is off to school. I love her like the dickens but honest and truly I ask hubby last night what age boarding school started. He said ... two. ;)

    Thanks for the great craft idea, it really is gorgeous and I love the fact that it's not treats (but don't tell your girls I said that!).

    Hope Mama Llama makes her plane,


  8. I'm glad you all like this project. I forgot to tell you that finding Christmas paper was not easy, for some reason. Everyone seemed to be out. I did find three pieces that I liked though and I got the stripey and the light pink out of the valentine section. I like pink, green and red for Christmas, so it was perfect for me. I could see doing a snowflake theme though too, with maybe blues and purples and whites. The combinations are endless, really. Don't restrict yourself to only Christmas papers.

  9. Love it! One more thing on my list to make! Maybe on Sunday...if not, I'll have to wait until next year!

  10. Jill, ONE WORD......Adorable!!! Great work, and I do love procrastinators!!! ;)

  11. Ooooo that is just SOOOO CUTE!! You are definitely the crafty diva!!! I really LOVE that.

    Hope you and your family have a fabulous Thanksgiving!

  12. You like dirty?? TMI Jill, TMI!!!

    Why are you so frickin' talented??? Here's my pink polka-dot, ribbon-tied, vomit again!

  13. I love this project and I can't wait to make one myself this weekend!! I think I may forgo the letters on the actual frame so, that I can change the paper out and use it for other month count downs or even just a super cute magnet board!! Thanks for your super cute idea!!!

  14. I love this idea!!! I'm gathering my items right now! Thanks for sharing. Oh and did you just use stickers for the numbers on the magnets??

  15. Jill, this is so cute that I posted a link to it in my Friday Favorites. ~Lanie

  16. Beautiful project and I love your sense of humor! I am confused though...How did you make the magnets/stones? I see you used those clear "stones" and I see you have numbers, but I can't tell if the numbers are on the stones or on the cards. How did you get the stones to be magnetic, but still be clear? TIA