Christmas

Holiday Traditions: Throw a First Snow Party (and a giveaway!)

We recently had our first snow of the season! And wow, it was a beautiful one. It was the kind of snow where it sticks to the trees and comes down in big, fluffy flakes. It looked like we were living in a giant snow globe! It was also the kind where you didn’t really have to shovel, hehe. The kids had a blast playing in it. Since this is our first full winter in our new home, they were over the moon to sled down our hill and traipse through the snow-covered woods. There’s something magical about the first snow (I know Lorelei Gilmore would agree with me on this), so we like to celebrate by throwing a First Snow Party!
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I love holiday traditions, and since becoming a mom, that’s something I’ve really enjoyed sharing with my boys. I can tell they love having things to look forward to year after year. Plus, traditions like this are just FUN!

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We pull out all the stops for our First Snow party: holiday treats like ice cream, cookies, egg nog, hot chocolate with homemade whipped cream (or a peppermint mocha for mom!), and some popcorn thrown in for a salty fix. ;)dsc_8700-copy

There’s also something so special about holiday foods, and Kemps Candy Cane Ice Cream, Peppermint Bark Moose Tracks, Egg Nog are perfect for this tradition. I think they almost taste even better because you know that you’re not going to be able to eat it year-round.

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My boys seriously went nuts for the Kemps Candy Cane Ice Cream, but the Peppermint Bark Moose Tracks was my fave. They kept thanking me over and over for the special treats. You know something is a hit when they are literally licking the bowl!

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I also discovered that my boys had never had Egg Nog before. What?! Don’t worry, that’s been corrected. It went over like gangbusters, in case you were wondering.

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See how much fun my kiddos had in this video:

(Click here if you’re having trouble viewing the video.)

I just love the holidays!! Sharing these traditions with my family is such a blessing, and I’m so excited for all the memories we’ll make this year, our first Christmas in our new (old) farmhouse and our first Christmas with our new baby.

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And in the spirit of Christmas, I get to give away some of this yummy goodness! Five winners will each receive a coupon for free Kemps products, so you can try these delicious treats for yourself and make memories with your family!

To enter to win, leave a comment answering the following question:

What holiday traditions do you have in your home? How are you celebrating the Christmas season?

*please leave your email address if it is not connected to your account, so I can contact you if you win!

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You can find out more about Kemps by visiting them on Facebook or Twitter.

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Buffalo Plaid Sweater Pillow Tutorial

I’m going to make a confession: my house isn’t decorated for Christmas yet. Usually I’m way ahead of the game, but with a little baby, it just hasn’t happened yet. And I love decorating for Christmas! I may have to leave things up a couple extra weeks to make up for it. ;) This year I made a fun and  holiday pillow – it’s one of the few things I have out right now. This buffalo plaid sweater pillow is cozy, easy to make, and would be a great gift or addition to you own holiday decor. Christmas decorations are so fun to make, like this vintage-style Christmas light garland, and this one has a touch of whimsy that is sure to add to your festivities!

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Supplies:

  • old sweater
  • polyfill or pillow form
  • pom pom trim
  • buffalo plaid fabric scraps
  • scissors
  • sewing machine
  • thread

1. Grab an old sweater in the color of your choice. I’m a huge fan of upycling, and sweater pillows are one of my go-to decor options.

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2. Cut the sweater to your desired size – cut apart the seams so you have two separate pieces.

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3. Cut out your letters from your buffalo plaid fabric. The fabric I had on hand was a french terry (which is stretchy), but you can easily do this with a woven non-stretchy fabric. Pin the letters in place onto the front piece.

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4. Zig-zag stitch around the letters to appliqué them onto the front of the pillow.

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5. Sandwich your pom pom trim in between the front and the back, with the right sides together. The pom moms should be pointed toward the middle of the pillow. You can pin or clip the two pillow pieces together, but I found it easier to just tuck the trim in as I was sewing.

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6. If you are using a pillow form, you will want to sew only three sides of your pillow and then insert your pillow form. If you are using polyfill like I used, then you’ll want to leave a small opening at the bottom of your pillow, with your pom pom trim unattached as shown.

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7. Turn the pillow right side out, stuff the pillow, and then close up your opening (or your entire side of the pillow if you are using a pillow form). Use a small zig-zag stitch to close up your opening, as this will hold your trim in place a little better than a straight stitch.

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The trim and the buffalo plaid are so fun, they are sure to put a smile on everyone’s face this holiday season!

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I’m loving the red and teal combo – it’s a little out of the box for typical Christmas decor, but breaking from tradition is good sometimes! :)

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If the pom pom trim is a little too crazy for you, try some piping instead! The process is the same and still gives a fun touch to your sweater pillow.

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Buffalo plaid is everywhere right now, and I can’t get enough of it! This cozy sweater pillow is the perfect way to add some to your holiday decor!

Have you started decorating for Christmas? What are your favorite DIY decorations?

This post originally appeared on Skip to My Lou on 11-17

Easy Vintage-style Christmas Light Garland Tutorial

Christmas is only a couple days away, but if you’re feeling like your house isn’t Christmassy enough, or you need an easy gift idea, this idea will really help you out! This adorable vintage-style Christmas light garland is simple to make, but adds a great pop to your decor. I love those big vintage bulbs, and with this garland, you can bring them into your house and put them just about anywhere – no electricity required!
Make a vintage Christmas light garland with this easy tutorial

Supplies:

  • fabric that doesn’t fray (fleece or felt are great choices)
  • rope, ribbon, or twine
  • embroidery thread
  • hand sewing needle
  • scissors
  • polyfill
  • a chopstick (or something similar to stuff the bulbs)
  • sewing machine (though you can get away with just hand sewing if you prefer!)

1.Cut out your Christmas light shapes. You will need two for every bulb. The number you need will depend how long you want your garland to be. I only made six, because I knew I wanted to hang it on the piano.

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2. Place two bulbs together, wrong sides together. Stitch around the bulbs with a blanket stitch.

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3. After you’ve gotten all around the bulb (except for the top part), stuff a small amount of polyfill into your bulb. You don’t want to use too much! Use the chopstick to get the stuffing all the way to the bottom of the bulb.

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4. Now sew the bulb onto your rope, twine, or ribbon. I used a thick jute rope, but make sure you use something that your sewing machine can handle! You can also hand sew the bulbs on, making this a completely hand sewn project – perfect for car trips or sewing by the Christmas tree!

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Now repeat these steps until all your bulbs are on your garland!christmas light garland

The thick jute I used gives this garland a little bit of a rustic feel, but you can change that up by choosing a different material. A shimmery ribbon would have a completely different look!

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This is such a simple decoration, but it brings such a festive look to your holiday decor. It’s easy enough that you could get your kiddos involved in making it too!

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Happy holiday sewing!

Need some other last minute gift ideas?

make-your-own-boxy-zipper-pouch

boxy zipper pouch

15 minute infinity scarf

infinity scarf

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lego minifig carrier

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leather notebook cover

This post was originally posted at Skip to My Lou on 11/29/15.

15 Gifts for Crafty Kids

If your kids are anything like mine, gifts that encourage creativity are always a safe bet. They love anything that allows them to express themselves. And I never have a problem buying them sewing and crafting supplies, because we are all about raising creative kids over here. Here are 15 gifts for crafty kids, that you still have time to get!

15 Gifts for Crafty Kids

15 Gifts for Crafty Kids:

(this post contains affiliate links – purchases through these links cost you nothing extra, but I receive a small commission, helping me to run this site!)

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Crafty Chloe – this book is ADORABLE. My boys absolutely love how Chloe makes gifts and clothes and all sorts of fun things!41cRbnczNrL._SX450_

Janome Mini – I highly recommend this sewing machine for kids! It works really well (I’ve used it in a pinch ;) and it’s built for even young kids to use safely.

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My First Sewing Kit – this kit has all your kiddos need to hand sew crafts!71fIRkDbHPL._SL1500_

Self-healing Cutting Mat – protect your kitchen table from scissors and scratches

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Sewing Kit – a must for any kiddo learning how to machine or hand sew

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Yarn Craft Kit – your kiddo can learn to knit, crochet, and make super fun accessories!

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Easel Accessory Set – this art set is perfect for many ages. I love sets like this where everything comes all together. These paint cups are so great too and prevent a lot of messes!

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Double-sided Easel – every artist needs an easel!

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Drawing Set – I like how this set has different mediums for drawing, giving your littles the opportunity to use many drawing methods. Perfect for all ages!

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Sketchbook – this is the sketch book that I use to plan out new designs and ideas, and I get them for my boys as well. They like having their drawings all in one spot, and I like not having a thousand different papers lying all over the place. ;)

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Craft-A-Day – this book is FULL of ideas for your crafting kiddos!51+2PgDb4TL

Felt – this is a must for crafting! There are so many things you can do with felt: sewing, crafting, gluing, cutting…

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Stained Fabric Markers – my favorite fabric markers! Pair these with some plain t-shirts or aprons for hours of entertainment.

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Assorted Craft Supplies – pretty self-explanatory ;)

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Embroidery Floss paired with Embroidery Hoops for hours of stitching fun!

Happy crafting, friends! :)

Handmade Gifts for Boys 2015 Giveaway and Wrap-up!

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The fourth annual Handmade Gifts for Boys series has come to a close! Stacey and I always have so much fun bringing you new ideas for gifts to make your kiddos. Hopefully you’ve found an idea or two and have been inspired to make your boys (or girls!) some gifts this year. Keep reading through the end of the post for two FANTASTIC giveaways with multiple winners!

Handmade Gifts For Boys 2015

1. Trading Card Carrier
2. DIY Wooden Scrap Tank
3. DIY Indoor Hopscotch Mat
4. Mini-me Apron and Tutorial
5. Snake Softie FREE pattern and Tutorial
6. 15+ Softie pattern round-up
7. Floor Cushion (with hidden storage) Tutorial
8. Lego Minifig Doll
9. Alex and Anna – Sweet Dreams Jammies
10. Happy Feet Pajamas

To find the tutorials from the previous years, click these images:

Handmade Gifts For Boys 2014

2014

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2013

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2012

Now for the GIVEAWAY! We have two big giveaways, with three winners each!! Every year we’ve been blessed with some incredible sponsors who have been so generous, and this year is no exception. We have some awesome patterns and shop credit for you to win!

Here on my blog, three winners will receive one of three prizes:

  1. $20 from Peek-a-boo Pattern Shop and 1 Bottoms Up Pants PDF Pattern from If Only Designs
  2. 2 PDF patterns of choice from Swoodson Says and 1 Bottoms Up Pants PDF pattern from If Only Designs
  3. 2 PDF patterns of choice from Swoodson Says and 1 Bottoms Up Pants PDF pattern from If Only Designs

handmade gifts for boys giveaway

Click here to enter the giveaway

Then head over to Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts where Stacey is giving away patterns and shop credit from these awesome sponsors:

handmadegiftsforboysgiveawayThanks so much for joining us for Handmade Gifts for Boys again this year! It was so much fun! Happy making :)

Handmade Gifts for Boys Tutorials and Inspiration

Handmade Holidays Garland Tutorial and BIG GIVEAWAY!

Today I’m over at Skip to My Lou as part of the Bake Craft Sew & Decorate series. I am sharing a Vintage Christmas Light Garland Tutorial

vintage christmas light garland tutorial

These are quick to whip up for holiday decorating and gift giving. In fact, you won’t want to miss all the handmade gift ideas! I have joined over 100 bloggers to share some amazing homemade gift ideas, plus I get to be part of an amazing sewing giveaway too! Keep reading to enter!

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This machine is sew AMAZING! She is a gem and her name is Rachel.

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One lucky winner will receive this beautiful Baby Lock Sewing Machine ($799 Value) and $100 Worth of Fabric from Riley Blake Designs.
Ready to take your sewing to the next level? The Baby Lock Rachel is the star of any sewing class, and she’s here to help you. This computerized sewing machine is equipped with 50 stitches and push-button features to make every project easier. The value is $799. Click here for more details.
Riley Blake Designs amazing fabrics include cottons, flannels, sparkle cottons, organic cotton, knits, and laminates in a range of designer and basic prints. I love their fabric and fantastic customer service!

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