100 Things to Do This Summer

Guys. Summer Vacation. It’s coming. Not for a couple more weeks; but I’m filled with both excitement and dread. I’m excited because a) I love hanging out with my kids, b) I love not having a rigid schedule and c) no homework to contend with every day! I dread it because a) I won’t be alone for 3 months–like approximately zero time to myself, b) I have to deal with lots of boredom and bickering, and c) I have to push/force/bribe them to keep learning so their brains don’t turn to mush over the summer. I can’t really change the no time to myself thing; but I can pre-empt the learning thing and the boredom thing. So here’s a quick fix for the summer boredom: Summer List UpdateThese summer lists provide 200 fun summer activities that take little to no-preparation. Most of them are free or inexpensive; and my kids love the checklist format. It’s almost like a challenge to see if we can complete both checklists by the end of summer. You can download and print them both here:

I’ve got a couple ideas about how to deal with learning and managing screen time for my oldest; but I still need to fine tune my plan a bit. I’ve got the kids signed up for several summer camps to make sure we’re up and out of the house at a reasonable time. Throw in a couple trips to Grandma’s house, a day trip or two and a handful of hikes and I think we’ve got recipe for a winning summer vacation. At least I’m going in with a good attitude, and that can’t hurt, right? I’m sure I’ll be a frazzled mess, whisper-yelling at them in the grocery store before I know it. But until then, here’s to summer vacation! 

Mother’s Day Round-Up

It wouldn’t be a holiday around here without a free printable card, right? After I put the glitter away, I started playing around with watercolors and hand-lettering, so I thought this would be a good chance to combine them, with a dash of humor. AwesomeIf your mom could use a little giggle this Mother’s Day, I’ve got you covered with this free printable Mother’s Day card. And for your one-stop Mother’s Day inspiration, I’ve gathered up a bunch of my favorite DIY ideas from around the web. 

DIY Mother's Day Gifts

Sources: 

  1. Origami & Confetti Card – Paper & Pin
  2. Criss Cross Coasters – Fall for DIY
  3. Mini Mother’s Day Garland – Homey Oh My
  4. Marbled Nail Polish Bowls – Hello, Wonderful
  5. Cookie Cards – Tell Love and Chocolate
  6. Fingerprint Charm Necklace – Honest to Nod (This is my final project in the Mother’s Day series I did with Land of Nod + Paper Source). Sorry for the shameless self-promotion. But I’m pretty excited about this necklace, because I made it with beads from my grandmother’s old jewelry…so it’ s got a special place in my heart. 

My friend Rebecca has also put together a great last-minute gift guide on her blog, so check it out if you need more ideas. 

Happy Mother’s Day! And have a great weekend.

DIY Tote Bags

I’m back with a fun new project! Remember when I introduced you to my new Sprout by HP? Just to refresh your memory: HP sent me one so I could show you some of the fun things it can do. Since it’s arrival, the kids and I have had so much fun creating new things. My 5-year-old wanted to make some bags, so here’s what we came up with: 

Ice Cream TotesI haven’t worked with scrapbook paper forever. Probably because I don’t scrapbook. ButI do have an obscene amount of paper. So it was great to use some of the paper that’s just hanging around in my laundry room. One quick stop at the craft store for some mini totes and we were ready to roll. We drew simple ice cream shapes on a variety of paper and cut them out.

Image LibraryI scanned all the pieces into my workspace on the Sprout. We played around with different scoop and topping combinations until they looked good enough to eat. The best part is that I didn’t even have to make the cut shapes proportional…I could resize them once they were scanned into the Sprout; so I didn’t have to measure or agonize over anything at all!

Mint Chocolate ChipOnce we’d finished designing our ice cream, I printed them out on transfer paper and ironed them onto the totes. Easy peasy. Except for that one bag I scorched. Oops. Then my little doll loaded up her goodies and headed for ballet class.

Ice Cream Tote BagNow she’s got a bag for every outfit and occasion. Wouldn’t these be fun as party favors, or summer camp activities? I’m giving you our ice cream creations so you can play around with them, too. I wish I could give you all a real life ice cream cone; but for now, hooray for digital ice cream! 

Download the cones here

ice cream-01

I couldn’t leave myself out. I’m always in need of a good tote bag. They’re perfect for hauling all those (overdue) library books back to where they came from. I decided to get even more simple with my shapes (squares, rectangles, circles and triangles) and see what I could make with them. Before I knew it, I had a whole village of colorful houses. 

House ToteI printed the houses out on transfer paper and ironed them onto my tote. It took a couple tries to get it just right…a little scorching, some swearing and an incident with a drippy iron. When they say “NO WATER” they really mean it. I recommend practicing a bit before going for the real deal. I cut and ironed each house on individually so I didn’t have a lot of the extra transfer paper surrounding the houses. 

Tote BagBaseball season just started here; so here’s an look at what’s in my bag these days (minus all the crumbs and garbage). I usually pack a survival kit before every game/practice. Some snacks and entertainment for the little dudes; and a few goodies for myself. Honestly, though, it feels like somedays my bag is nothing more than a portable garbage can–candy wrappers, crumpled receipts, tiny socks, and an assortment of crumbs. At least if I’m hauling around everyone’s crap I can do it in a cute bag, right?


houses-01Get the printable houses here

Big thanks to HP for introducing me to the new Sprout! To learn more about the Sprout, visit sprout.com.

Discloure: This post is sponsored by HP. Although this post is sponsored, all opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that support my work.

Happy Spring!

Hi guys! Can you believe it’s April?!? I’m just popping in to say hi real quick. And I’ve got a little printable quote for you. I love this one. You can download and print the file here. 

I’ve been scarce around here and on social media lately. That usually means I’m either sick or consumed with a big project. Thankfully, it’s the latter. And it’s not just a singular project. I specialize in starting a bazillion things at once, and then leaving them in assorted stages of completion for months. I’m currently working on a front-door facelift; a dining room makeover; painting all the trim in my entire house; a new stationery collection, and some yard + garden projects. Probably a bit much…but I bounce back and forth between projects, leaving messes and piles of tools, paper and potting soil all over the place. Pretty much my husband’s worst nightmare. But he’s a great sport. Love you, dude.

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My next project starts Monday. My friends at Garden Tribe are doing a 21-day boot camp for growing your own food. My kids and I have been obsessed lately with growing our own food, so I’m super excited about boot camp. Our little lettuce and pea seeds we started indoors are sprouting; and we’ll move them outside as soon as it’s warm enough. We’ve got big plans for our little “garden” this year.  Boot Camp covers everything you need to know about growing your own food: different types of soil, growing zones, timing, EVERYTHING. So even rookies like me stand a chance at growing something edible this year. It’s all via email, so you can take it at your own pace…Oh, and did I mention it’s FREE?!? I’ve taken several classes at Garden Tribe, and they’re always fantastic. (P.S. This isn’t sponsored…I just love Garden Tribe and growing food…so I thought you might like it too). So go sign up now

Happy Easter! xo