Monday, November 22, 2010

update for paige's class...

tonight we finished the crayons for paige's kindergarten class. you can see my tutorial here or read the original from Diary of a Preppy Mom here. from 5 boxes of 64 crayons acquired at the dollar store we ended up with enough crayons so that each of the 25 students could have 4 crayons and there were 6 or 7 left over. we sorted the crayons by color so that there wouldn't be duplicates in each package and then put them in favor bags found in the dollar section at target (love the target!)

i cut pieces of carstock just a bit larger than a couple of my christmas stamps, wrote each child's name on the front under the stamp and then had paige write 'from paige' on the backs of the cards at 5 years old she's not really used to writing that much and, being in kindergarten she's still figuring out how to write in a straight line and making the letters the right direction (as you can see, the 'g' in paige is backwards but that's what makes it adorable) then we punched a hole in the card, put a ribbon through it and tied it around the bag. even though there was quite a bit of time involved, around 45 minutes per dozen including peeling wrappers, baking and cooling which had to be completed before the next batch could start, they end up pretty easy and give a lot of bang for the buck. Here's the final break down on cost (so crazy cheap)

5 boxes of 64 crayons from dollar tree - $5
one wilton silicone mini tree pan from michaels - $6 ($10-40% off with coupon)
2 bags of 20 celophane favor bags from target's dollar section -$2
ribbon left over from presents last christmas -$0
stamped gift tags from cardstock on hand - $0

grand total -$13 or just under 50 cents per kid

here are some tips and ideas in closing:
  • you could easily use the same amount of supplies but only give each child 2 crayons and give twice as many kids presents if your child has a bigger class.
  • i made a couple of crayons from only two crayons instead of 3 and they turned out a bit thinner than i wanted but still thick enough to be usable and i would imagine that your kid's crayon box/bucket/can/etc has enough broken and partial crayons that you may not have to purchase as many but i wouldn't mix brands within each tree just in case for some reason they don't reharden consistently
  • i would highly reccomend two silicone pans if you're going to be making a bigger batch but if you're doing things around the house it's pretty easy to switch them around and get it taken care of
  • make sure you have two cookie sheets so that when you take the melted crayons out of the oven you can transfer them to a different pan and put them in the fridge to lessen the cooling time
  • you could easily print some coloring pages, even resize them to 1/2 or quarter page in something easy like ms word and give them with the crayons (i think they'd be super cute with full size coloring sheets rolled into a tube (like a diploma), tied with the ribbon before it's tied around the bag of crayons, it could be a super cute stocking stuffer too
  • peeling wrappers off of cheap crayons is super easy if you loosen the whole seam of the wrapper before trying to peel the rest off
  • little bits of crayon wax flake when breaking crayons, be sure to clean your cookie sheets really weel and if you wipe it off the top of the stove before it has a chance to cool it's not messy

that's all for tonight, happy crafting!!

christmas cards and calendars...

so, shutterfly is doing this awesome promotion for bloggers that want to write about shutterfly. they’re giving away 50 free holiday cards to bloggers just for writing 150+ little words. this is almost too easy for me since, as i’m sure you know, i use shutterfly every year for my christmas cards and to make an awesome calendar for my grandmother with the past year’s photos and everyone’s birthdays listed to make things easier for her. i usually start my cards and calendar way in advance and, thanks to shutterfly, I can save my work, go back to it, change layouts 100 times, adjust the size of the photos as many times as I want. I’m trying to decide between these cards, anyone have a preference?

the white bar between the two photos will have our names and the year

grandma's calendar is still in progress but you can check out their calendars here and get ideas for your own christmas cards here. i hope you get some great ideas for your holiday gift-giving!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

It's gonna be a crafty Christmas...

today's craft was inspired (totaly got the idea from) Diary of a Preppy Mom . after seeing her blog post about these adorable crayons i sent the link to my sister who, instead of saying 'sure, let's make some for my kids' said, 'those would be super cute for paige's class'. so, here i am at 11:30 at night taking crayons out of my oven... we started by getting 64pks of crayons at the Dollar Tree ($1 each) and a mini tree silicone mold from Michaels ($9.99- 40% coupon). Then I separated the crayons into groups of 3s that would make pretty looking crayons.then i broke the groups of 3s into each mold shapeand then you put them in the oven to 'bake' for 15-20 minutes at 250F or until they're all melty.then i put mine in the fridge because i was so impatient. After 20-30 minutes they reharden and are super easy to pop-out

as soon as they're finished and in favor bags for each kid i'll post more pics. until then, what are ya'll planning for your kiddos' classes/teachers?

Monday, November 15, 2010

i'm one crafty bennett...

here's a quick update. i've decided not to use my blog to complain or comment on the misfortune of others or anything that wouldn't inspire others, which means that FAF has come to an end and you probably won't hear about my uninspiring part-time retail job anymore. i may, at some point comment on a difficulty i'm having with a project but i promise not to whine and complain too much :) i'm thinking that i'll mainly show you (brag about) projects and tell you about fun things with the family, share pics, etc.

so, back to the title... i made these two awesome projects out of the majority of three old books (paperback books from my childhood that i have no interest in reading or saving to let my children read), two floral forms i got for $1 each and a decent amount of hot glue. the tree will look much better when grouped with many more trees all made of different materials, (i hope) i love love love this wreath and can't believe how easy it was to make. i would guess that it took around 2 hours but i'm really not sure because i did it while sitting on the sofa watching tv this afternoon.

anywho, i'm feeling craft and i'm hopingi can find a few more books to try a different technique on another wreath and maybe even find a few new tree ideas :) i'm so excited about holiday decorating (even though i'm still waiting for after thanksgiving to put up my trees)!