Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Treats for Teachers

So, I walked into my friend Janet's classroom last week and snatched another idea. I just love walking into her classroom because it's so tidy. So cheery. So uncluttered. So CEEEEE-UTE. I walk in and just inhale the cuteness. 

Yeah. That and because I'm a cheater and a lifter of all ideas cute, I start scanning the landscape-that-is-her-classroom for something cute to copy. And she never disappoints.

Sitting on her desk, a gift from one of her fabulous parents, was one of these little faux paint cans, decorated super cute and filled with Peanut M&Ms. Now you know you could just take any old container and fill it with Peanut M&Ms, and it would be awesome, but seriously, how cute!

So, I immediately rationalized another trip to the craft store. You know how I dread that place.

Since I have two kidlets there are two teachers to appreciate, hence the two cans.

Now, please excuse my ignorance for a moment. Okay, again. I'll never live down that whole Modge Podge thing, will I?

Anyway, what the ding dang heck is this dingity dang washer for?!!!

All the paint cans had them and I can't for the life of me figure out what I was supposed to do with them. I even asked Girl Genius and she hadn't a clue. In retrospect, I'm thinking I should have at least tied the washers to the cans with a cutesy ribbon. It's that junk drawer mentality. I can't throw it away until I know what it is . . . I might need it someday.

No lie. I have scads of unidentified hoo-hahs that I might need someday. Doesn't everyone?

The not-knowing makes me crazy. I'm seriously worried that my cutified cans are sitting on my favorite teachers' desks, poised to to implode or something, spewing Almond Joy and Kit Kat bits about the classroom, ruining the cute, all because I didn't include the ding dang washer thing-a-ling.

I have such crafty problems, don't I?

Now, I'm not going to show you every little thing I did to these cans, but I do want to show you that the circumference of these particular cans was a tinsy bit more than a twelve inch long piece of paper. You can check that ahead of time by measuring the diameter and multiplying it by pi. You know, if you care.

I know you don't, but this is why it matters--since I didn't choose to use a forgiving pattern that I could just do a patch job with, I was forced to make my label cover the gap. Oh the horror.

It's actually not that big of a deal.

Once you glue buttons and flowers and ribbon to the can, then fill it with chocolatey goodness, who's going to even notice, right?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Kids' Bike License Plates

I got this idea from Janiel's blog, which you can't visit because she's gone private since I stumbled across her over a year ago. Sorry. Regardless, you can still benefit from her crafty wisdom, because I've stolen her idea and I'm sharing it with you today. Because I'm a thief.

Surely you've seen the cutesy bike license plates that you can buy for your kids, right? Except that you can never find your kid's name, or if you can, they spelled it wrong because apparently license plate manufacturers are illiterate. Or maybe it's me? 

Anyway, I do have a point here. If you want to make license plates for your kids, the Idaho Transportation website has this little dealie bob where you type in a plate name you want to search for, and then it pops up for you to preview it. Probably they don't intend for you to save that little preview to your desktop and print it for your own evil purposes, but that's exactly what I did. Because Janiel did it first, and I rationalized that it must be okay if she did it. Right?

And, oopsie, I might have gone a little crazy and made some for a few of my peeps' kids too.

After I lifted my counterfeit plates off the Idaho Transportation website, I printed them out as 4x6 prints and then trimmed away the white bits on the top and bottom.

Then I mounted them on white card stock and laminated them so they would survive when one of my little angels left their bike out in the rain. Or drove through a mud puddle. Or was attacked by a slobbering Saint Bernard. Or whatever. Use your imagination.

The final step was to punch two holes at the top and reinforce them with eyelets. Yes, I know I said two and you see four holes there, but remember, I'm Bob Vila's nightmare and I measure once and cut twice. Against his stern advice. 

And apparently it matters where exactly your holes should go depending on whose bike it's going on and where exactly you are going to attach it. So you should probably listen to Bob Vila, and first figure out where you are going to mount yours and then where your holes should go. Then you just take a couple of zip ties, thread them through your holes and TA-DA, your offspring are all street legal. Or at least they look like they are. Because they're counterfeit plates, remember?

Did you know that some people are very picky about their license plates? When we moved here and had to get Idaho plates, Peanut Head refused to get the standard Idaho plates because they have "Famous Potatoes" on them. He was so adamant about it, that we are paying $20 extra every ding dang year just so he can drive around without the famous potatoes on his car. And he loves french fries!

I mean I could understand if Idaho were the Broccoli capital of the world and the plates exclaimed Buxom Broccoli!, but Famous Potatoes? 

He's so lucky that I made him a plate for his bike and resisted the very tempting urge to pick the potato plates. I know Peanut Head is going to be so excited to see his plate. I am so good to that man.

If any of you find websites for other states where you can do this, please leave a comment with the web address so we can all have plates for our states. Wouldn't that be cool? We could make personalized plates for all our nieces and nephews for Christmas. People everywhere will covet our counterfeit plates. [Sigh.]

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Modge Podge Scandal

I introduced my students to Modge Podge last week, and I was careful to tell them that it is a Magic Substance and it enables people to create A-MAZING things with its magical essence. As I talked, they looked on with wonder as I explained what we were going to do with this miraculous element. I also made a point of telling them how expensive it was and that it shouldn't be wasted. And if they ever wanted to get me a gift . . . hint, hint . . . blah, blah.

It is at this point that I shall stop and tell you that I, as a teacher, always tell my students at the beginning of the year that I don't know everything and I will make mistakes. Mistakes that they will catch and pointedly point out to me, puffing up as they exclaim it to all the world, thereby making me feel like a complete bonehead. And I'm happy to do it, because as their teacher I'm prepared to "take one for the team" in order to increase their self-esteem, further their learning, etc.

And this was one of those times. One of my sweet, little, cherub-faced charges raised his hand and said "Um. Mrs. Scott, you do know that that says MOD Podge and not Modge Podge, right?"

Ah-hem. WHAT?!!!!!!

I looked at the container, then back at him, then back at the container then back at him. And I felt like a bonehead. And I'm slightly embarrassed to say that I did say to myself, and possibly out loud, "When did they change the name?" It was embarrassing. And funny. And embarrassing. Time stopped for a few minutes as I gathered my wits about me and reconciled this new little tidbit in my world of all things crafty.

I'm happy to say that I did recover.

I shared my little story with Janae, Girl Genius, because she is the Queen of All Things Crafty and Cute, and guess what? All this time, she knew that it was called MOD Podge and she continued to let me bumble on, advertising my ignorance to the world. The world!

And did not say a thing. She must have really enjoyed herself.

Anyway, Queen-Crafty-Girl-Genius-Janae works at Michael's and she says everybody calls it Modge Podge and she never says anything. So I feel a little better now.

But I'm still a little skeptical, because that's my nature. So now I have something personal to ask you. Have you been secretly laughing at me every ding dang time I've written the word Modge Podge? Go ahead. Confess. I won't hold it against you.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mothers Day!

Happy Mothers Day! I hope everyone is enjoying their day, whether or not you're a mom. Personally, I've made a pact with myself to not lift a finger all day long. I got off to a good start with breakfast in bed accompanied by my squealing monsters. It was lovely.

Now I share with you a picture of my own mom. I'm not sure how old she is in this picture, but I think it's safe to say that she was in her gawky teenage years.

Contrary to the above picture, I grew up thinking I had the most beautiful mother in the world. In the looks department, however, I took after my Dad. Dang it.

And no, I don't look like Spock, but I do have my Dad's crazy, maniacal eyebrows. The high maintenance kind that require daily attention. And there's no working around that Jack Nicholson bend there at the top. It's a curse. I'm the one on the bottom left, but the curse doesn't really rear it's ugly head until I'm a little older.

My Mama Llama has very dainty features and I . . . do not.

My Mama Llama has a twisted sense of humor and, guess what, I got that. I remember as a kid, probably about six or seven, when she hid in our bedroom and played a little trick on us. My sister had this three foot tall stuffed tiger, and my Mama Llama stuck it's head out from behind our bedroom door and made growling noises, like the tiger was going to come and eat us. Well, my sister tends to be a Chicken Butt Drama Llama with regards to all things supernatural, so she came a little bit unglued, which only encouraged my Mama Llama more.

I, however, being the skeptical control freak that I am, got increasingly irate with my mother. In one part of my brain I knew it was her, but in another chicken butt part of my brain I was freaking myself out thinking maybe the tiger really did come to life and eat my Mama Llama. Oh crap! We're all going to die!

Then I would get mad and yell "STOP IT! YOU STOP IT RIGHT NOW! YOU COME OUT AND STOP TEASING US! I KNOW IT'S YOU, MOM!" I think I just said that last part to convince myself. All the while my sister was freaking out next to me, becoming more and more hysterical, which just made me more and more mad. We provided my Mama Llama with double the fun.

Ah . . . Good times.

My Mama Llama started young too. She had a chicken butt sister, Christine, who she spent hours torturing. I recall her telling us many times, with a little sparkle in her eyes, about the time she flushed all of Christine's Buster Crabbe pictures down the toilet, just because she looooooooved him. I would have done the same to my sister and her Captain Kirk pictures, except she could kick my butt.

And I was afraid of her. Details.

So, I give you evidence, this explains why I am the sick, twisted individual that I am.

So now, in observance of Mother's Day, I think I'll go animate a certain freakish purple dinosaur that must still be around here somewhere. My own little Avatar of sorts.


I love being a mom.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Teacher Appreciation Bookmarks

Did you know that this week is Teacher Appreciation Week? It is. Malibu Barbie inspired me to make these bookmarks for the teachers at my girlies' school, and I thought you might like to get in on it too.

There are eight different teacher quotes--two per 4x6 print.

These pictures show the front of the bookmarks on the ends, and in the middle is the back of each design.

My favorite is this colorful one.

If you've never made my bookmarks, go here for the step-by-step.

If you plan to attach them to gift cards for your favorite bookstore, be sure that you keep the magnets away from the magnetic stripe on the gift card. That would be bad.

Here they are. Remember to click on each picture to get the best resolution before you save them to your desktop.


Saturday, May 1, 2010

Slow Cooking Recipe Card Divider

Y'all can thank Nikki for this new recipe card divider. She needed a place for all her Crock Pot recipes, so she e-mailed me and asked me real nice, would I please make her a divider card for her homeless recipes.


It kind of got me to thinking though, and I think I need some crock pot recipes. Does anyone have any awesome crock pot recipes that they want to share? Leave a comment and spread the love, will you? Thanks.

Here's the updated divider tab for the new divider. Enjoy!