Turning the every”day” into holi”day”…A Christmas Frame Collage!

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‘Tis the season to decorate and get into some festive DIY-ing! Here is an idea for transforming existing wall decor to go with the holiday theme.

This year I decided to print off a few favorite holiday photos from years past and find some holiday themed frames.  Combining the frames with Christmas decor that usually hangs throughout the home created a holiday themed frame collage in the entry!

christmas frame collage

Stay tuned…a festive crafting party is in the works and we will be sure to share the details. Our inspiration is coming from here, and we cannot wait!

Sharing today on  http://diyshowoff.com/category/other/that-diy-party/ ! Head on over for some fantastic ideas!

jay2

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Fun with Flyers: A preschool lesson on fruits & veggies

I always get excited on flyer day…on the hunt for super good deals that they often bring! This week as I was looking through the weekly bundle with my C when she began to ask about certain items in the grocery flyer, and an idea struck!

preschool fruit and vegetable activity

{Decal from uppercase living…currently this one is unavailable but loads of other super cute ones…I’ve run out of space on my walls so am extending beyond the four walls!}

With back to school season in full swing, my brain has been filling up {thank you Pinterest} with different ideas to promote Cs learning at home when she is not at preschool {to think next year I will be talking about actual back to SCHOOL!? yikes!}.

Rounding up 3 simple on hand supplies, an activity to teach my kiddo about differentiating between fruits and veggies, was in the works…

preschool fruit and vegetable activity

And with such little preparation! All I did was cut the fruit and veggie pics from the various flyers.

preschool fruit and vegetable activity

You can easily build this into a preschool homeschooling unit on nutrition, combine with the storytelling {perhaps one of our favs, the Very Hungry Caterpillar}, change it up to introduce other food groups, use this grocery bag/cut out concept to facilitate your toddlers contribution to the grocery list, or simply use as a fun stand alone activity!

preschool fruit and vegetable activity

And in true preschooler fashion, my C decided anymore than 10 minutes spent on one activity is unheard of! So now we have a ready to go activity for the next time!

preschool fruit and vegetable activity

jay2

Naptime DIY: Wooden Chevron Painted Letters

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The space above the playroom shelves has always baffled me. I have tried clipboards for artwork, wall talk, frames, plants, clock. And nothing has felt “right”.

I’d had my eye on these wooden letters at our local craft store, and when they went on clearance at the end of last week, I knew this was my chance. You should have seen me in the aisle trying to spell words with the letters that were left available!

be awesome

Finally thrilled with being able to spell “be awesome” {Inspired by Little Miss Momma’s Be Awesome Today sign by Barn Owl Primitives, I loaded the letters into my cart {and put the many other letters back in their homes awaiting the next nap time crafter}. In the end I had to settle with 2 letters from an all white set but I think it works for the first letter if each word.

Using green painters tape, white craft paint and a roller, I got to “chevron-ing” the wooden letters. They have these neat peel off sticky strips that I used to affix the letters to the wall. Naptime crafting with minutes to spare!

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hallway

What I love about the placement of this statement is that its our first view as we leave our bedrooms to start out day.

Be awesome? Sure, I think I will.

What positive statements get you through your day?

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space

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jay2

 

 

 

Eating Healthy Made Easier

I read this quote the other day, and it was like a giant bell went off in my head.

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It really can be that simple.  And its so very true. Wish I had found this a few months back when I was bathing suit shopping! {If you are new to Purple Eggplant, you can read about my battle with the B-Word here}.

I don’t know about you, but the biggest deterrent for me to follow through on eating healthy is not being organized.   A work from home momma, I feel I should be way more organized than I am around here when it comes to meal planning. But I am not. I am now accepting and at peace that is my reality, so I am working with it ! Solution focused thinking here I come.

I want to be successful, so I had to come up with a plan.

Lying in bed one night last week, I realized my over thinking tired brain was actually being productive! I am going to try what I am now dubbing “the at home salad bar“.  Sounds fun, and for me if something is fun and has a theme, I am even that much more likely to do it.

Outreaching to our Purple Eggplant Facebook followers and friends, we put together a pretty super list of items that could be used in an at home salad bar:

  • Peppers
  • Carrots
  • Cucumbers snap peas
  • Red onion
  • Blueberries
  • Strawberries
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Goat cheese
  • Low fat brick cheese
  • Eggs
  • Chicken
  • Beef
  • Walnuts
  • Sesame seeds
  • Dried cranberries
  • Beansprouts
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Avacado
  • Almonds
  • Olives
  • Chickpeas
  • Quinoa
  • Beets
  • Grapes
  • Feta
  • Crispy noodles
  • Mushrooms
  • Pineapples
  • Baby spinach
  • Assorted lettuce greens
  • Green onions

{the possibilities are seriously endless}

The great thing about this list is if you don’t end up using it all in salads and don’t want it to go to waste, you can make a stir fry, mango bean salad, fajitas, or spaghetti sauce…and you’ve already saved yourself the chopping time!

Off to the grocery store I went armed with my list. I love unpacking such a healthy bag of groceries!

unpacking the groceries

I then got organized with the needed containers {and have to admit these are brand new. I have never nor will I ever have this many matching container/lid combos!}

the containers

…and then I got to chopping {and my veggie monster snuck in for some irresistible fruit and veggies!}.

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It really is a beautiful thing!

almost done

The at home salad bar is ready to go.

Healthy eating made easy!

ready to rock

We would love to hear how YOU make healthy eating a little easier?

jay2

Outdoor Balloon Birthday Party in Pictures {Part I: Balloon Themed Party Food}

This weekend we celebrated my C’s 3rd birthday. Unreal. 3 already.

C’s 1st birthday party was outside, and the week leading up to it I was glued to the weather channel. I loved the outdoor party vibe so much, we risked it again. Thankfully I wasn’t as stressed this year! … but I was a bit worried as we woke to overcast skies. Turned out, Mother Nature had a present for C too – a rain free day !

C’s daddy and I headed to Claudette Cain Park in Ottawa early on Sunday morning to start setting up the balloon themed birthday party!

setting up the balloon themed party at Claudette Cain Park

I set my own record with 765 photos taken!  So I thought I would share bits and parts of the party with you through different posts. Many ideas were collected on Pinterest and can be found here.

This first post is about balloon themed party food. I had too much fun with this!

We also have some printable party food labels for your in .jpeg format and water bottle and juice box label freebies for download. I printed them onto 4×6 cardstock and folded it over to make a tent card, but you can use the images so many other ways!  {clicking the image will open it so you can save to your computer}

meringue rainbow clouds
cloud printable label

{meringue rainbow clouds}

timbit pop
timbit ballooons printable label

{timbits are a staple play date item with our group so I had to incorporate into the party food – timbit balloons – yum!}

Balloon shaped party sandwiches

ham ballooons

pb and j sandwhiches

{balloon shaped sandwiches…PB&J pockets, tortilla pinwheels, mini ham pitas…topped with cherry tomato balloons}

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cookiepops

{Oreo pops…have you seen the birthday confetti kind?? Yummy and super cute}fruit pops
fruitpops

{This is one case where the cardboard box wasn’t enough to keep the food standing up! If you try this for fruit pops, I suggest using a deeper box for the stand so they aren’t falling over!}

rainbow jello cups
rainbow jellow

{Rainbow jello cups}

balloon party theme popcorn
popcorn

{POPcorn!…We had POPtarts too but I couldn’t get them to stay on the stick so they were left out at the last minute}

veggie balloons
veggie balloons

{I didn’t get a pic with the wrapping off! But you can use cherry tomatoes, and cucumber, carrot and pepper medallions to make a tray of balloon shaped veggies!}

DIY water bottle labels

{Water bottles with custom “refresh” wraps…printable water bottle label wraps}

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{Apple and mixed berry juice boxes wrapped with custom juice box labels so young kiddos can easily identify}

balloon cake pops and DIY cake pop stand{Balloon cake pops! stand created by wrapping floral foam, cardboard boxes, and decorating! and of course a special cupcake with candles for the birthday girl…that never got lit…more on going with the flow at your kiddos birthday party in a later post!}

The cake pops created by a dear friend were certainly a hit!

alexa and pop caley popsc and cake pop

For the tots, the take aways and party activities, we stayed with the balloon theme/outdoor!

outdoor treatsIMG_8475 IMG_8481IMG_8482ky and rainbow wandmorgan under balloon treeIMG_8479

 

Because only one or two of the guests were old enough to recognize their name, we personalized loot bags with the kiddos pics

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You can also visit Catch My Party, where C’s Outdoor Balloon Birthday Party was featured!

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jay2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A new perspective on gratitude

The Storyteller was my pick for this months book club. I anxiously awaited Jodi Picoult’s new release in March.

I’m so glad I made the time to sit down and read it.

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But tonight as I walk past our gratitude wall, I do so with a heavy heart.

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The past 200 pages of this story are moving me beyond measure, as I read about a young woman who is living through the Holocaust. I’m nearing the end and I don’t want her to stop telling her story and at the same time I wish her story was purely based on fiction.

As I look at our gratitude wall and typical mom//dad//kid schedule I can’t help but feel – well actually I don’t know what I feel – but it’s not a good feeling. What I am thankful for seems so very insignificant in the face of what so many women, children, men, babies would have been thankful for in Germany many years ago.

While I can’t change history, I can change today.

Above our door we have the words “today I’m going to try and change the world”. It was part of a country song lyric that i heard a few years ago and just couldn’t get out of my head {custom decal from Blue Couture Design}.

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When I was working directly with children and women who’d experience violence, I knew I was making a difference. Now that I’ve left frontline work, the difference I can make isn’t the same – not greater or lesser, just different. And sometimes my heart and mind miss this work. As I read about atrocities such as those in this story, there’s a little part of me that comes alive again and says, ok, what can I do to make this world a better place. Because today still, atrocities happen. Here and worldwide. But I know the job I am doing raising my daughter is just as important. And maybe one day she will grow to change this world.

Today we CAN change the world. We can all do something in our own way, that makes a difference for someone. The difference may be huge, tiny, small scale or grand. But it us ours to make.

If you have a few moments, here’s a link to the video that inspired our over the door quote:

{ Johnny Reid // Today I’m Gonna Try and Change the World }

jay2

one of my favorite quotes & a free printable

do you read Jodi Picoult’s books? her books are the only one’s i will pay full hard cover price for ! aaaaaaa-mazing reads!

ever since My Sisters Keeper, i have been a devout follower. i realized i had been missing out on years of her books, but caught myself up…fast ! definite page turners about characters experiencing real life issues.

my favorite quote comes from her book, Picture Perfect. i remember reading this passage years ago and it stood out so much i wrote it down. it was at a time in my own life where i finally got it right…and never turned back.

and you

{ printable created with moroccan tile paper freebie from Mel Stampz …loads of great digital paper on her site! }

jay2

 

Hello World

What are you saying hello to this week? We’ve kept busy and are excited to share our first Purple Eggplant collaborative post!

{ Purple Eggplant is linking up this week with Lisa Leonard‘s Hello Monday post …not only is this a wicked inspirational blog, but a great shoppe too }

jays hello

hello late evening sun of spring and after dinner walks

hello bright new walls…so long red

a bittersweet hello to C’s big girl bed { you can find the headbaord tutorial here }

hello garden centre…oh how i’ve missed you

hello new “did it myself” jewels

hello books…i’ve missed you more than the garden centre ! we have 3 weeks together before the next term begins. { any book suggestions? would love to hear them in the comments ! }

jay2

mels hello

Hello to a new hair adventures

Hello to my new yellow slickers that I will fit into my style because they are way too cool (and the rain..so I can wear them)

and most importantly, Hello to happy hugs!

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andies hello

Hello funny invention that lets hand puppet shows happen  

Hello morning routine being done early

Hello bittersweet last day of classes  

Hello special surprise gift

Hello to wearing my new necklace  

So long classroom… Until we meet again

Hello to a bright hopeful ending to a very long bittersweet day  

Hello to evening routine singing and random water drop fishes  

Hello to love  

Good night Tuesday

andie1

DIY No Sew Pillow

never doubt the power of a beauty tablecloth i say!

not long ago, i upholstered my kiddos headboard with a funky table cloth i found. i had some left over fabric laying around and remembered a Pinterest crafting eve the Purple Eggplants had back in January where we created no sew pillows, with some felt and a glue gun. we were not blogging back then so didn’t capture any fancy photos of all of our creations, but here is one of them.

312403_10152673774560107_78233220_nAndie found this super inspiring tutorial from the Crafting Chicks and created a gorgeous purple felt flower pillow that had no sewing that Mel and i were oggling over. with Andie’s guidance on our “Pinterest-ing Eve” we all left happy with our new fancy and simple pillow creations !

{our goal is to have monthly creating sessions, and we are keeping track of our “must crafts” on our shared Pinterest board. any cool crafting ideas you’ve found? please share them with us in the comments section !}

with the leftover headboard tablecloth fabric, i duplicated the yellow felt flower pillow. super simple. i was a bit worried about hot gluing the fabric, but so long as you fold in the open edges and place a line of hot glue between them, it works just as well as the felt did !

a headboard and pillow with a $14.99 table cloth. i say that’s one sweet deal !

fabric and felt

i am also digging the felt on fabric look too. so much that i found a funky body pillow pillowcase that i think will make some pretty cool looking pillow covers once i am through with it !

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the 3 of us got together to blog chat the other eve and had to of course integrate some crafting ! here is a sneak peak ~ stay tuned for some of our jewlery creations !

jay2

DIY monogram art canvas for toddler room … Or any room !

i have become in love with collage walls and they have begun to appear everywhere around my house !

displaying memories has always been important to me. when we moved in to our home and had a stair well with wasted walls, i got to framing and hammering ! i then was inspired by funky montages on Pinterest that i moved on to the playroom…and i basically have no wall space anymore !

well…except a thin wall in my C’s room ! so i decided a while ago to create one for her and continue to add to it as i see special items that are uniquely her.

here is a simple and frugal way to showcase your kiddos special first letter in 3 simple steps with 5 supplies.

all you need is:

  • 5×7 artists canvas (or bigger depending on your wall space)
  • wooden letter (i found a white one but you could get as creative as you want with this)
  • favorite (or leftover) fabric
  • staple gun
  • glue gun

and this is what you do:

  1. eyeball your fabric and cut it so you have enough to pull it around and staple to the back
  2. get to staplin’
  3. using hot glue, stick your letter to the fabric

thats it !

…and for under $5, you have a piece of art created by you that looks poretty neat too !

a great addition to and existing wall collage or even cute on its own

[You are my sunshine printable from Dimple Prints]

decor stuff