Holiday Gift Guide: DIY Mason Jar Lid Coasters

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I’m so excited about this one because it just makes cents. Yes, it makes sense, but because this is a gift you don’t wanna forget to make, it makes cents. You’ll see because you probably already have a few of the ingredients at home. Well, if you don’t, borrow them or save them from the Christmas gift from grandma you are guaranteed to get.

Anyways, This summer was my first year canning and while my stock is pretty full for me I’m just thinking every time I pop open one of the lids for my go to spaghetti sauce or sweet peaches….”I don’t wanna through these away!!!” I literally have a fit every time I have to throw away a lid or seal, which ever you prefer. Let’s face it, canning saves me a ton of money but having to buy new lids each time does not. You all know me, the bang for the buck girl, I couldn’t fathom the fact that these lids could not be put to good use. So I saved them all, each and every one and you know what? I’m a friggin genius! (I had to laugh at that one. I’m crafty but genius is way to kind. Haha!)

I searched and searched pinterest and could not find one idea that I could do myself. Even something to hint at what I ¬†could do would have helped me but nonetheless I dug into my crafting bag and pulled out my creativity. You know the thing about pinterest? It sometimes makes me too reliant on other people’s creativity, but don’t get me wrong, I’m still a pinterest junkie. However, my belief is that every now and again your own creative sparks need to be plugged in. And if you don’t have any? pinterest is a good place to get started. Eh?

I’m sure I could do a lot more with my lids so I won’t have to use up my good rings but I’m not too thirsty on rings so I had some to spare. If you buy a case of jars, you get lids and rings and there are plenty of things to do with the jars (i.e loose change, makeup storage, candy jar, tooth brushes, q-tips and cotton balls, razors, travel lotions and more) I even keep my brillo pads and sink stoppers in one from time to time.

So here’s what you will need:

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  • Scissors
  • Glue gun
  • Cork card stock paper
  • Stamps of your choice (got mine at Michael’s for $1.00)( Make sure it fits inside of the circle)
  • Used or new wide mouth mason jar lid and ring
  • Stamp pad in color of your choice ( I used the one’s from our guest book, hubby hand drew a willow tree ūüôā
  • A pen to trace with ( not pictured)

1. With the lid of the Jar face down trace around it as many times as you’d like to get your desired number of coasters. My sister gave me the left over cork paper from a project she did for my bridal shower. Then cut it out.

2. Next with your glue gun place a thin layer of hot glue in the bottom of the ring ( all the way around) facing upward like in the picture above. Only a thin layer or it will ooze out of the bottom.

3. Press your lid on top of the hot glue seal side up. So when you turn it over it should look like it is sealed together, like the top of a canned mason jar. Metal to metal, plastic inside.

4. Once that dries, squeeze out another thin layer of hot glue on to the seal side. Around the edge is best because you want to look smooth and not bumpy. Press your cork circle down on the hot glue.

5. Next press your stamp down on your pad and then stamp it on the cork as light or dark as you’d like, I did mine super heavy so It took a few days to dry. If you use color box it will take a few days. But they have the most vibrant colors in my opinion.

And then you’re done! Just wait for them to dry and voila!

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The good thing about these are? You can make them to keep or give away, they can say what every you want them to and you can make multiple ones to switch out for the seasons. This project cost me $1.00 because I had everything but the stamps, but if you were starting from scratch you can just buy the rings and seal here for less than $5.50. It’s still a cheap project if you ask me.

I so hope you try this! And as always with everything good thing I post, I know you’ll love this and add it to your list!

Happy Crafting,

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Linking up with: wedded wednesdays, playdates with God, livingproverbs31, Titus2sday

25 Advent Ideas for Your Family

Welcome back! I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and didn’t shop too hard on black Friday. That madness was crazy!¬†My hats off to you if shopped the major store chains.

Back to our program.

So today marks the second day of the first week of advent. I’m sure you’ve been seeing all the activities and ideas going around but I have to admit, I completely ignored them. Why you say? Because for the longest, advent, to me, was no more than a catholic tradition or some sort of lent ritual and I, being the legalistic christian that I was, was not about to be judged for starting a tradition in my family that originated from Catholicism. (And to clarify, advent didn’t start in the catholic church, it goes way back before that from Lutheran’s to old older Christians) Sorry to say but it is true. ¬†My children have always gotten gifts for Christmas but I’ve always been the intentional mother who focused more on the Christ in Christmas. It’s always been more Jesus, and less gifts. Needless to say, I kind of go crazy on Christmas. Not black Friday crazy but, “I have to get that because they will freak out” crazy. ¬†Forgive my ignorance, but once I read up on what advent is supposed to symbolize, I grew more interested. That’s right, I learned what advent means to me as a christian and I grew more interested. The video below best explains what it means to Christians today.

click here if you cannot see this video.

Advent is a time that people all around the world celebrate the hope that we have in Jesus, the fact that he was born and the celebration of his coming and what his birth symbolizes for us. So in this time we take time to reflect on the goodness of Jesus and focus more on him besides our usual traditions of gift giving, holiday parties and cookie swaps. Don’t get me wrong, it’s okay to buy gifts and do all of our family and holiday traditions, just as long as our hearts still come back and line up with the fact that if all of that vanishes, our hearts will remain solid in Jesus. Have at it. With that being said I have some great ideas for you! Ideas for the kiddos and maybe just for you.

Here are:

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1. Cardboard Advent wreath and candles from jamiespurejoy

2. Easy pocket Advent Calender from strangeandlovelyride

3. Fun and frugal Advent jar from messforless

4. Advent wreath and songs from letsplaykidsmusic

5. Advent action cards from theiowafarmerswife

6. Adventures in Odyssey Advent activity calendar from focusonthefamily.com

7. Host a Candy Cane hunt

8. Write scriptures in a card and give it to someone to encourage them

9. Make an ornament for someone

10. Take stuffed animals to a hospital and give them out

11.Write a letter to Jesus thanking him and praising him

12. Make snowflakes and hang them in the window

13. Do a family or individual advent devotional

14. Go caroling to the neighbors, a nursing home or relatives

15. Write a note to the mail man or lady

16. Read a book a day as an advent activity

17. Make an ornament for Jesus

18. Donate old toys or new one’s to a local place

19. Make cards for your local fire company

20. Clean up someone’s trash

21. Put cookies in the mail box

22. Take someone a meal

23. Make a craft and send it to someone

24. Visit a live nativity

25. Camp out in the living room with hot chocolate, a fake snowball fight(socks or marshmallows) and Christmas movies

There are tons of other things that you can do to encourage someone or be kind. In this time, My family has taken the approach to make it about everyone else and not ourselves. My husband and I have chosen to take Christmas and teach our children the value of the gifts they receive and the value of the gifts they give. We want to intentionally move them toward esteeming others over themselves. We will do a lot for each other but we also want to be a light and love to all those around us.

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

Hebrews 10:24-25

How will you celebrate advent if you are? What activities are you choosing to partake in? Please share!

And as always, with everything I post, I do hope you love this and can add some of these things to your own list.

Happy Advent-ing!

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Linking up with: thebettermom, wedded wednesdays, playdates with God, livingproverbs31, Titus2sday

DIY Preschool Basketball Game

I have not blogged in about two weeks. Happens like that at times. I hope you all can understand that my life is CRAZY!

My whole house has been under the weather for a few days so I have been trying desperately to press on and just get things done.¬†I can’t help but think that my brain has been under the weather long before those few days. But I am so thankful and grateful for the great spirits that my children, hubs and I have been able to keep since then.

Hulk Smash and I took a week off from preschool last week to organize the madness of my husbands stuff. Being married to an artist? Crazy!

I managed to sneak in a few lessons here and there and I’d like to share with you today a game that might be helpful in your preschool journey.

I’m a fan of printables but not a fan of how much ink I use and the cost of it. The concept of this alphabet learning game came from a printable I saw once on pinterest. I am certain the game worked in a way that mine does but my preschooler enjoys the colors much more and the fact that we incorporate household items into our game.

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Here’s what you will need:

7 sheets of construction paper

Scissors

A sharpie or marker of choice

Some laundry baskets and or a play basket ball hoop if you have it

A chalk board or dry erase board

That’s it!

1. Divide your sheets into four squares with your marker (make a cross on the paper that makes four squares. It should take up the whole paper because you want the letters to be big)

2. In each square, draw a circle and some basket ball lines like this

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3. Mark the letters of the alphabet in the basketballs and cut out the squares ( You can also do capital and lowercase but I just started with general recognition of the letters so I just put the capital letter on my basketball’s)

For the game:

1. Lay out all your basketball letters in an aisle and place your laundry baskets at the top of the aisle

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* For children learning the alphabet

2. Write the letter that ¬†you’d like them to choose on your board (Ex. Can you find the letter C?) When they find it (and they may not, help them along by showing them where it is and letting them pick it up. I usually do an announcer voice and pretend HM is an all-star) introduce the sound that the letter makes and have them repeat.

Here’s what it sounds like for us:

HM has found the (C sound) C!! ¬†HM what letter do you have? (He will shout C! Be encouraged to pump it up and let them shout!) HM what is the sound that C makes? (In the beginning I had to help him by repeating the sound and letter but we do this every Tuesday so he knows now what to do) Let’s see what he does with it!

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Crumble up that letter C and take it to THE HOOP! (he usually is running to the basket at this point) Will he dunk it or just plain shoot it? He’s running down the court in high-speed and he SHOOTS!!!!! YES!!! Perfect score by HM!

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Ideally this would be perfect for a little boy but you can improvise with all sorts of things to suit for little girls. I personally think a little girl would enjoy this game without all the noise maybe.

Well thanksgiving is coming! And I am patiently looking forward to a week off from preschool and food!

Please let me know how you like this game! And as always, with everything I post, I hope it helps and is an idea you’ll keep!

I’m so thankful for the holidays. It is always a blessing to me and my family to experience togetherness.

What are you thankful for?

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You might also like: Encouragement for Preschool Moms:Pressing Through the Hard Days, Howto Homeschool a Preschooler

How to Make Evaporated Milk at Home

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Have you ever used a can of (fat-free) evaporated milk and thought, I wonder how they make this? Ever looked at the back of the ingredients? It’s non-fat milk and dipotassium phosphate (water-soluble salt additive often used as an buffering agent, emulsifier and preservative. It’s used in evaporated milk to thicken it).

Skip the salt and make your own either by simmer it or buying non-fat dry milk powder.

Since I make my own condensed soup I buy a big box of non-fat dry milk, Wal-Mart’s brand.

Here’s how you can make your own:

2/3 cup non-fat dry milk powder

3/4 cup water

Mix milk and water (makes 1 cup)

or

simmer 2 1/4 cups of regular whole milk until it reduces to 1 cup

Use it anywhere that calls for evaporated milk!

There you have it!

Stay tuned for more Meal Plan Monday’s¬†and as always, with every recipe I post, I do hope you love it!

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Linking up with: thebettermom