Saturday, December 31, 2011

New Year Resolutions & Free Printable


Happy New Years!
(Well...almost in few hours)
During the time between Christmas and New Years I always find myself looking forward to the future and also to the past to see how far I've come.  I know I have a lot to be thankful for this past year, especially my amazing son who has grown so much and has learned more than I could ever imagine.  My little baby is now wearing big boy underpants and using the potty all by himself!  It makes me want to cry with tears of joy and cry because he's not a little baby anymore.  I am also thankful for my husband who tries so hard to support me in everything I try to do.  I know hon, there are a ton of ideas in this head of mine.  Lastly, I am thankful I was finally able to find the time for me and make the commitment to becoming healthier.  A year later, 60+ lbs lighter, and two 5ks under my belt and I am feeling pretty darn good! 
Now to look to the future and plan for an even better year!  I always think of the New Year as a time to start fresh with a blank slate in front of you.  Now when I think of my New Year Resolutions (yes, plural, I have many) I think of them as a to do list.  A very long to do list that I have a whole year to complete.  If I don't finish something, it continues on to next years list and so on and so forth.  Once I sat down and really started to think about what I wanted to accomplish this year, a theme started to appear.
Yes, if you know me well, I appear to be very organized.  However, I realized there is much room for improvement.  I secretly envy and hate at the same time all those photos and blogs that show labeled containers in pantries, linen closets, craft rooms, closets, etc.  Why oh why can't my house look like that?  Well give me a year and let's see what I can come up with.
After writing for about 30 minutes, I came up with 21 things on my resolution list.
WHOA! That's a lot! You might be saying but some are really small things and it helps keep me organized. (Yup, there's that word again. I told you there was a theme.)  So I thought I would share my personal resolutions with you to help keep myself focused and to maybe help inspire others.  I also have a FREE New Years Resolution planner for you to download at the end of this post.
Here's my 2012 resolutions!
I printed my resolutions out and framed them in an extra frame.  I will be finding a place to display it so it is always in my mind.  This is how it came out.

To help keep you organized as well, I created a blank New Year Resolution Planner in two colors, silver and gold with 10 possible resolutions.
You can print it out and write directly on the paper or place it in a frame and use a dry erase marker on the glass.

Please note: Both printables are created by KT Designs and are for personal use only.  Please do not use my designs as your own or sell or alter them in anyway.  If you would like to include my printable on your website please direct people to my blog for downloading.  Thank you!
I would also LOVE it if you became a follower and/or sent a comment my way :)

To download the files, just click on the down arrow.

I hope your New Year is off to a great start!


Thursday, December 29, 2011

Be Merry Banner

Even though Christmas is over, I still decided to share my Be Merry Banner I made last year but was unable to post because I hadn't started my this blog yet.  This particular banner actually hangs in my mom's house and I will be sharing another banner soon which hangs in my house during the winter season. 
I can't remember the paper pack I used for the banner but it was one of the Christmas ones found at Michael's or Joann Fabrics.  I also added some red jingle bells between each panel of the banner for some extra festive fun! I do apologize for the photographs, I still have not mastered the art of taking photos on banners.  If you have any suggestions I am definitely open to anything :)
Here it is...

For each panel, I used a scalloped circle and shadow in red and gold.  Then I layered a festive print paper with pop dots.  Lastly, I glittered all the letters with bright red glitter and added the shadow in green.  Some red bows, jingle bells, and rhinestones completed the holiday look.
Here are some more detailed pictures.

Here are some close ups so you can see the detail of the paper, glitter, and bells.

Everything was cut by my Cricut and the
Winter Woodland cartridge.
I hope your holiday was merry!


P.S. If you are interested in this banner or any banner you have seen on my blog please email me HERE for more information and pricing options.  I would love to design something completely custom for you based on your interests and color choices.

Monday, December 26, 2011

{Gift Tip} Adding that little extra something...

Gift Tip #1

I know it is already past Christmas but I thought I would share with you a tip I use every year to help give that little extra something to my cookie trays. 
Now I used to buy fancy trays and boxes to give my cookies away in but it got really expensive especially since I make more than a dozen different kinds of cookies and give away about the same amount. 
This year I used plain white sturdy paper plates.  I piled it high with all the different cookies, bon bons, and fudge then wrapped it in clear plastic wrap.  One year I had a very pretty red wrap and one with holly on it but I haven't been able to find it again.  I print out a little label that says, "Happy Holidays! I hope your celebration is extra sweet." and then cut it out with a circle punch or my Cricut.  Now to add that little extra something, I cut out snowflakes on my Cricut and tied a ribbon around both the snowflake and tag.  Voila, you have a super cute gift with that added touch of detail. 

If you have a Cricut you really should have both When Its Cold Outside and Winter Lace.  Both cartridges have tons of different snowflakes you can cut.  Or if you don't own a Cricut, you can cut snowflakes the old fashion way by folding paper and cutting out different shapes.  I really think it gives the gift a warm and festive feel even though it is so simple.
What do you think?


Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!
I hope your entire day is filled with the wonder and joy of children, delicious food and drink, and warm embraces from close family.
I myself am savoring this little piece of quiet heaven before my son wakes up and is so excited about all his presents.  Let me just tell you, he's been a very good boy lately and our tree definitely shows just how much.  I do have to say that I absolutely love this time of year and I love seeing the excitement, joy and wonder on my son's face as we talk about Christmas, Santa, and reindeer.  I have however, not enjoyed the sudden exclamations while drive that I need to "WATCH OUT! A REINDEER!" I am not sure where that came from but more than a few times I have hit the brakes to narrowly avoid missing his imaginary reindeer.

On another note...
I do have a little gift for all my readers today!
A last minute gift idea for young children that will not only entertain them for a while but it will smell so good in your house.

Peppermint Candy Cane Play Dough
I have made all different types of scented play dough but I decided to get very festive this year and create some play dough for both the children of my friends and family.
Step #1: Make your play dough. (Don't worry, it is so easy to make)

1 cup of flour
1 cup of water
2 tsp. of Cream of Tartar
1/2 cup of salt
1 tbsp. of vegetable oil
Food Coloring (red)
Peppermint Extract (I just poured a little bit into the mix)

1. Mix everything together in a saucepan and cook on medium heat while constantly stirring.
2. The mixture will start to form a ball and get stuck on the spoon. 
3.  Cook for just a little longer and then remove the ball from the heat and let it cool.
4. Once it is cool enough to touch, I knead the dough so I make sure everything is mixed and really smooth.
5. Repeat the entire recipe but omit the red food coloring.

Once you have both colors finished and cooled, roll out half of each color into long snakes.  Place them side by side and twist them together.  I cut pieces about 6 inches long so they would fit into my canning jars but you can place them into baggies or larger jars or even Tupperware containers.  This is what it looks like inside the jar.

Once you place it inside the jar it will look like a candy cane (sort of).

I then added my label to the top (see below for the FREE printable) and tied a red ribbon around the jar lid and candy cane.  I think they came out super cute and I know the kids will really love them.

FYI: The play dough should last a couple of months if you keep it tightly sealed.  If it starts to dry out, just knead in a few drops of water and it should get softer.

Now for the printable, just click on the down arrow in the box below!  If you download my printable please follow my blog or leave me a comment.  I really do love reading everything you have to say :)
Also please note:  This printable is created by KT Designs and is for personal use only. 

Have a very Merry Christmas with your family!


Thursday, December 8, 2011

Christmas Card 2011

I may be a little late with ordering my Christmas cards this year but they are finally on their way to my house.
If there is one thing I absolutely love about Christmas it is sending Christmas cards to friends and family and receiving them in the mail.  I love looking at the holiday family photos!
I also thought it would be nice to share my Christmas card with all of you this year!
Here is our family Christmas card for 2011!

Elegant Script Wishes Christmas Card
Creating Christmas cards has never been this easy.
View the entire collection of cards.

Happy Holidays!


Wednesday, November 30, 2011

100 Posts & a FREE Printable

I just realized that I have posted 100 TIMES!
Wahoo! I feel like I have actually accomplished something, not that it is anything really noteworthy but all the same I am celebrating:)
And with that celebrating I am also sharing a free printable with all of you.  In my desperate search to become more organized this holiday season, I stumbled across a few gift list organizers, most of which I was not impressed with (meaning they just didn't have enough color going on).  However, I really liked the content of this ONE but wanted to jazz the background up a bit.  So with a big thank you to for her ideas, I used their chart but then added my own font/background. 
Well... I added my own font and 6 different bgrounds.  I couldn't pick just one so you have your choice of 6 backgrounds.

To download the gift list:
1. Please follow my blog.
2. Please leave me a comment. 
I love reading everything you have to say.
3. Click the download link (the down arrow) below the image you wish to download.


Terms of use: All gift lists are created/adapted by KT Designs and are for PERSONAL USE only.  You may NOT re-sell, re-distribute, or claim them as your own.  If you are posting on the Internet, you must link back to this website.  Thank you!
Happy gift list organizing!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Thanksgiving Banner

I made this banner last year for Thanksgiving and was so happy to take it back out again this year.  I love the simplicity of the saying, the rustic colors, and the detailed font.  Sadly, I have since forgotten all the cartridges I used but I am pretty sure the banner panels and the font are from Winter Woodland.  I have used Winter Woodland for so many things besides typical winter decor and scrapbooking pages.  I definitely recommend it if you haven't already picked it up.
For each panel I used a shiny gold and red floral background from an autumn cardstock paper pack and then layered it with a two layered leaf in red, gold, and green.  On top of that I used red and gold again for the two layers of the font.  Each layer is pop-dotted to add dimension.  I then used a thin cranberry colored ribbon to tie each panel together.  I apologize for the photos.  It is really difficult to take a picture of a banner and I have yet to figure out a better way.  Here are a few more shots with a little more detail.

I hope you like it :)


Friday, November 25, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!
I hope you all have a relaxing time with friends and family, grateful for the love, laughter, and memories you share together!
I am so grateful for all that I have been blessed with and I continue to be in awe of how amazing life can be when it's filled with the wonder of a two and a half year old. 
I am grateful for great friends, close family, and delicious food.
I am grateful for the little things in life, like my sons messy hair when he wakes up in the morning, or the smell of bubble bath on his skin after his nightly bath. 
I am grateful my husband is home and safe spending time with his family and will continue to be here for every milestone of his sons life. 
I am grateful we are healthy and have a roof over our heads and food in our bellies.
I am also grateful I am now almost 60 lbs (59.8lbs) lighter than I was last year. 
Sorry, I just had to add one selfish item to the list :)

What are you grateful for this
Thanksgiving holiday?


P.S. I am so grateful for everyone who continues to read my blog and comment on my crafts and thoughts. 

Thank you, it definitely makes it worth it:)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

{Free Printable} I Spy cards for Sensory Bin

Well here it is...
I spy cards for the Halloween sensory bin!

Fun activities for your child using the I Spy cards:
*find the item in the sensory bin
*identify the color
*count how many
Click HERE for the post and tutorial on how to make your own.

Each download contains four cards including a picture of the item, the name of the item, and the color word in the correct color.  There are 26 cards in all and two bonus blank cards for any additional items you might have included in your sensory bin.

You can download all seven pages by clicking HERE!
If you download my printables please leave me a comment or follow my blog.  I love reading what you have to say:)

Terms of use: All I spy cards are created by KT Designs and are for PERSONAL USE only.  You may NOT re-sell, re-distribute, or claim them as your own.  If you are posting on the Internet, you must link back to this website.  Thank you!

Happy I-spying!


Thursday, November 17, 2011

{Tutorial} Halloween Sensory Bin

During my Internet search for tot school, I came across a couple of websites that posted about sensory bins.  It seems to be a common activity for Montessori schools but thought it would be a fun, indoor activity for my little man.  I found some great ideas at Counting Coconuts and The Picky Apple and then went to Wal-Mart and Stop N Shop for more ideas.

 This is what I found:

Here's what's inside:
*2 bags of black beans
*1 bag of yellow split peas
*Pumpkin buckets
*Pumpkin ornament
*Ghost ornament
*Spider rings
*Glitter spider embellishments
*Glitter pumpkin embellishments
*Sticky skeletons
*Small sand shovel
*Large bin with lid

Here's the fun part!
1. Pour both bags of black beans and the one bag of split pea on the bottom of your bin.
2. Mix them together.
3. Layer your Halloween items both on top of and under the beans.
4. Give it to your child. (Monitor young children since there are many small items that are choking hazards)
5. Marvel at how long they stay engaged and all the fun things they do with the items inside.

Here's my little man enjoying his time with the sensory bin. 
I love how serious his little face is.

My little man loved filling the little pumpkin buckets up with the beans and then dumping them into his candy bucket.  Surprising, only a few beans escaped the bin since he was very careful to keep  everything in the bin and on the table.

I can't wait to make one for fall/Thanksgiving and then Christmas!
What items would you include for the
two holidays coming up?


P.S. Stay tuned for a FREE PRINTABLE to use with this sensory bin!  It should be available this weekend:)

Sunday, November 13, 2011

MIA for a little while

Just a little post to let you know I have been and will continue to be MIA for a little while.  I have found myself under a great deal of stress dealing with writing report cards, potty training at home, planning my sister's baby shower, putting together 50+ baby shower invitations, and then this coming week conferencing with 17 families.  I promise I will continue to bring you photos and tutorials of my crafts after this much needed break.  I already have some posts in mind with the upcoming baby shower, so stay tuned.  I should be back in action by the end of this coming week :)

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Halloween Banner

Happy Halloween... just a little bit late :)
Halloween was definitely down played where I live because of the snow storm (6 inches of snow to be exact) we received two days prior which knocked out many power lines and trees.  Thankfully, we still maintained our power but unfortunately many people did not which made trick or treating a bit dangerous without street lights.  We did however lose many large tree branches on about five of our trees.  Some were much taller than our house and so heavy and large my hands would not fit around the branch.  However, we still managed to decorate for Halloween despite the snow (UGH, I still can't believe it).  
I printed out a few subway art printables for fall, brought out my decorations and made ghosts to hang from the trees with my little man.  Of course no holiday (can we really call it a holiday?) is complete without a banner.  So without further adieu, here she is...
I used Birthday Bash for the actual banner and Happy Hauntings for the letters.  The spiders are left over from my little man's sensory bucket (more on that later).

I am so happy with how it came out.  I love the letters and how they look like they are dripping and of course you can't forget the glitter.  I am sure you are shocked that I used glitter and pop dots.  Never seen that before on this site, lol!
What do you think?


Saturday, October 29, 2011

{Tot School} A is for Apple

We started Tot School a couple of weeks ago in order to prepare my little man for preschool next year.  I also figured it was time to start some type of "school" activity with him because he keeps telling me he wants to go to school and go on the school bus.  I just don't have the heart to tell him he won't be riding the school bus next year because he will be going into school with me very early in the morning.

I love the focus on my little guy's face!

Before we started Tot School I really searched online for pre-preschool activities and came across a ton of great websites, many with FREE downloads.  I introduced you to Oopsey Daisy a while ago and found her sight to be the best at having everything in a nice neat packet but I also wanted to share with you some of the other sites I found some great activities at.
At 1+1+1=1 you can find a whole section dedicated to teaching tots including activities, games, books all free to download, print, and use with your little one. 
You can check it out by clicking the link below.
 Here's a peek at our very first day of Tot School!
I started the lesson by introducing the letter A card.  We pointed to the letter A, the apple picture, and the apple word a few time.  Then I said to my little man "point to the letter A", "point to the apple", "point to the word apple".  He was able to do these tasks with ease.

Then I gave him his new school tools.  He has new crayons, new big pencils, a glue stick, and his very own scissors (which I keep far away from his little hands right now:).

Then we worked on creating a lower case 'a' into an apple.  I found this printout at ABC Twiggles which is Free but only for the letter A.  I am currently thinking about investing in this program because they include letter activities, word walls, prewriting and tracing activities, crafts, folder games, letter books, snacks, and movement activities for each letter!
Here's my little man using his glue stick to glue each piece of the letter a.  He absolutely loves his glue stick!

Next, he colored (with both hands of course) the inside of the a with the color red to make it look like an apple.

We then worked on practicing making an A.  I repeated the words, up, down, and across to help him remember how to make the letter and guided his hand through the motions.  This is definitely an area we will have to work on because it was very difficult for him to form the letter correctly but then again he is still really young right now.  His favorite part was the across part!  He kept repeating across, across, across.

Lastly, we finished our school day with an "apple picking" movement activity.  I cut out a bunch of apple shapes using my Cricut in red, green, and yellow.  Using a little bit of tape, I "hid" them around our living room.  Then I called the little man out and gave him a bucket to go apple picking.  He had a ball picking the apples and putting them in his bucket.  Next, we counted all of the apples, and sorted them by color.  I was pretty impressed with how well he did with this and I plan on creating a pumpkin picking activity too for our next unit!

Day one of Tot School = A huge success!
I definitely suggest going to the two different sites I included in this post and printing out their packets.  As I include more about Tot School, I will have more sites for you to take a peek at.  You will be amazed at how much fun you will have with your little one while they learn about letters, numbers, colors, shapes, etc.
Are you working on Tot School with your little one? 
Where did you find your great ideas?