I found a vase on the clearance aisle at Homegoods yesterday. I decided I would take some of the Cedar Tree Clippings that I still have in my bucket out back, and make a quick arrangement. As I was working on it, it turned into more of a solo Christmas Tree, and less of an arrangement. I used “oasis” to set the mini tree firmly in the vase… After figuring out what I wanted to do in that respect, I got out some silver spray paint and the fake snow… Oh, and some spray adhesive. I sprayed the tips of the tree with silver paint… and then I just kept spraying a bunch more. He he. I then used a little spray adhesive… powdered it with the snow, and put it back in the vase. I threw a little bit of gravel in there to cover the oasis. I sprayed that silver and covered it with snow. Check out the photos. You’ll also see the Vanilla we made, along with the Laser Photocopy Transfered to Wood Project, and the Paperwhites that we planted. Looks like the paperwhites may be bloomed by Christmas, regardless of the fact that I totally forgot about them and let them go without water for over a week and a half. I think they may be impossible to kill. Then we also did our DIY Christmas Paper Towel Ornaments, and our DIY Tomato Cage Christmas Trees… I think that will probably wrap it up for us this Christmas. Who knows, we might throw in one more, if my nieces finish it. =) Either way, MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! Oh, WAIT! I almost forgot… I will be posting a photo of Dominic and Judah’s special Christmas package wrapped with the Free Printable Christmas Labels and more. So, stay tuned…

Got my Cedar Tree Clippings, Oasis, and Clippers...

Got my Cedar Tree Clippings, Oasis, and Clippers…

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DIY Outdoor Christmas Trees – Made out of Tomato Cages, 100 ct Strand of White Christmas Lights, and a Bag of Zip Ties. We made FIVE. Cost was $5.56 a piece to make. Our nieces came over, and whipped out the 5 trees in less than an hour. So, for $27.80, we now have a beautiful display of lights in the yard! The nice thing is, not only do they look fabulous… We are going to use the tomato cages come gardening time! Sweet deal! This is another EASY DIY that is FAST and FUN to do with kids. They will be proud of their work and less inclined to beg for the next giant lit up thing they see at Costco. So, get your “A” game on, and let’s get this party started! Like I said, you will need 3 things: 1. Tomato Cages ($1.96 each @ Lowes) 2. 100 ct Christmas Lights ($2.69 each @ Lowes) 3. Tie Straps (Bag of 100 @ Lowes for $4.59). You will only need to increase your number of cages and lights as you go. You should have plenty of tie straps in the one bag. You’re realistically going to use about 15 tie straps on each tree. Okay… Let’s get started. I’d like you to meet my nieces, Elli, Emma and Baylee. They are the girls in charge. Uncle Tim is their assistant. Check out the photos and see the process, read the captions to get instructions. Feel free to click on the “Red Stamp” box in the upper corner and leave me a comment if you have any questions, concerns or comments. Okay, let’s go! =) On a side note: I apologize for the hazy and blurry pics. Most of you know I’m sick and in treatment. I didn’t have my “A” game on today, but I sure tried! =D

Elli is ready to head out to the yard to begin assembling the Christmas Trees!

Elli is ready to head out to the yard to begin assembling the Christmas Trees!

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Christmas DIY – Laser Photo Copy Transfered to Wood – This is one of the easiest and most rewarding projects ever. It certainly isn’t a project exclusive to Christmas either. You’ll only need a few basics… Here’s the list: 1. Your Laser Photo Copy (Be sure to print it reversed, as it will be transfered reversed thus returning it back to normal). 2. Sponge Brush or Paint Brush 3. Liquitex Matte Gel Medium 4. A Piece of Wood Cut to the size you desire 4. A Cup or Bowl of water 5. A Washcloth or Washrag – Now, check out the demonstration photos along with the instructional captions. Have fun making these for your own home and as gifts for others! They are fabulous!

Laser Photo Copy (cannot be Ink Jet, sorry), Sponge Brush, Matte Gel Medium, Piece of Wood - Ready... Set... Go!

Laser Photo Copy (cannot be Ink Jet, sorry), Sponge Brush, Matte Gel Medium, Piece of Wood – Ready… Set… Go!

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I’ve been having some fun with the free printable downloads and some builder’s paper from the hardware store… all cheap. Here are a few ideas of what can be done. But really, it’s all just open to what you can imagine, so the sky is the limit! Now, for our “Christmas Crafting DIY’s” – Here’s an UPDATE – Keep an eye out… Either this evening, or early AM tomorrow, I will be posting the laser printed photo transfered to wood DIY tutorial… It’s a super EASY one. Really, it’s so simple and quick. It is still absolutely feasible for making them as Christmas Gifts! Okay, that’s it! Merry Christmas!!! Check back soon for the DIY!

Printable Download Chalkboard Letters, Builder's Paper, White Paint, Glue, Pieces of my Cedar Christmas Tree, Baker's Twine, and an Old Bead.

Printable Download Chalkboard Letters, Builder’s Paper, White Paint, Glue, Pieces of my Cedar Christmas Tree, Baker’s Twine, some Stamps (but no stamp pads, so I used the white tempera paint) and an Old Bead.

To some of these I added yarn that I had from a project from last year.  I braided the yarn to make the scarfs, and used a piece of something from one of Tim and my many feeble attempts at knitting on a loom (It worked until the pieces kept falling out... Neither of us knew how to fix it, so we have all these "half knit" misfit toys) to make the rug and scarf on one of the gifts you'll see in the next photo.  I also had a snowflake hole punch from a few years back.  That came in handy.  I used it with regular printer paper to make the snowflakes.

To some of these I added yarn that I had from a project from last year. I braided the yarn to make the scarfs, and used a piece of something from one of Tim and my many feeble attempts at knitting on a loom (It worked until the pieces kept falling out… Neither of us knew how to fix it, so we have all these “half knit” misfit toys) to make the rug and scarf on one of the gifts you’ll see in the next photo. I also had a snowflake hole punch from a few years back that came in handy. I used it with regular printer paper to make the snowflakes.

I had already wrapped this present, and just glued a piece of builder's paper to the top.  I then another layer and painted a winter ice scape.  I used some paper I dug out of my crafting boxes, along with the things I printed from the internet.  You'll also see the Old Yarn, Baker's Twine, White Tempera Paint, and the Basics I had around the house.  I love to gift warp, and I missed out on getting my ribbon at Costco this year.  So, I challenged myself to creating some cool packages for the kids without going out and buying all of the stuff I normally do.  It was a blast!  You've got to try it!

I had already wrapped this present, and just glued a piece of builder’s paper to the top. I then added another layer and painted a winter ice scape. I used some paper I dug out of my crafting boxes, along with the things I printed from the internet. You’ll also see the Old Yarn, Baker’s Twine, White Tempera Paint, and the Basics I had around the house. I love to gift warp, and I missed out on getting my ribbon at Costco this year. So, I challenged myself to creating some cool packages for the kids without going out and buying all of the stuff I normally do. It was a blast! You’ve got to try it!

So, I bought these brown craft labels for our Homemade Vanilla Bean Extract... which is AMAZING, by the way!  Anyway, I bought them online from a store that sells them in bulk, because they were actually cheaper than buying a couple of sheets off of etsy.com.  So, now I have extra labels... I know I'll make vanilla again, but seriously, these were very inexpensive... So, for Christmas Stocking Stuffers, I am going to be printing out Personalized "Property of "Said Child" - and various other sayings that they'll think are cool.  I'll roll them in a scroll, and tie them with a string and stick it in their stockings.

So, I bought these brown craft labels for our Homemade Vanilla Bean Extract… which is AMAZING, by the way! Anyway, I bought them online from a store that sells them in bulk, because they were actually cheaper than buying a couple of sheets off of etsy.com. So, now I have extra labels… I know I’ll make vanilla again, but seriously, these were very inexpensive… So, for Christmas Stocking Stuffers, I am going to be printing out Personalized “Property of “Said Child” – and various other sayings that they’ll think are cool. I’ll roll them in a scroll, and tie them with a string and stick it in their stockings.

Okay, so there are some ideas to get your creative juices flowing.  Hope you’re enjoying this Christmas Season.  

Sunday, 15th, 2013 – Is the 3rd Sunday of Advent.

Here’s a copy from Billy Graham‘s Christmas Advent… I just love it~

Read Luke 2:8-10

On that first Christmas night, the angels appeared to the shepherds on a hill near Bethlehem.  Alfred Edersheim, the great 19th-century Jewish-Christian scholar, wrote in his book The Life and Times of Jesus and the Messiah that shepherds and the sheep to whom the angels appeared near Bethlehem were no ordinary shepherds and sheep.  The sheep were those bound for the temple sacrifices.  The shepherds were outcasts because of their necessary isolation from religious ordinances.  And their manner of life rendered legal observances unlikely, if not absolutely impossible.  

How wonderful that in God’s wisdom and love the angels should appear to them – the doomed and the outcast – that night.

Today we can declare to the world that the Good Shepherd cares for all people and wants to give them peace.  Christ came on that first Christmas for one great purpose – to die on the cross for our sins.  Now God offers forgiveness, inner peace, and eternal life to all who will repent and believe in His Son.  This is the Christmas message!

Do you know people who need to hear about God’s love and forgiveness?  Will you share the true Christmas message with them this year?

(Taken from Billy Graham’s Christmas Advent 2013)

Merry Christmas!!

~Amie Joy (reyajoy)

Bottling Up Our Homemade Vanilla Bean Extract!!! YAY! The Day Has Arrived!

It’s finally THAT day!!!  We get to bottle up our YUMMY Vanilla Bean Extract and Package it up for Gourmet Christmas Gifts made with lots and lots of Love!!!

So, we started by printing our labels.

So, we started by printing our labels.

See.  Here's an up-close shot.

See?  Here’s a close-up shot for ya.

Behold, the VANILLA!!!  We also have our little jars all sanitized and ready to go.

Behold, the VANILLA!!! We also have our little jars and lids all sanitized and ready to go.

Behold, the HARD WORKIN' MAN!

Behold, the HARD WORKIN’ MAN – AKA – the grebe!  Note: He’s all sanitized and ready to go too.  😉

Label ON the Bottle.

Label ON the Bottle.

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Christmas Ornaments made from Paper Towel Rolls – DIY – So fun and so easy!!!

Christmas Ornaments made from Paper Towel Rolls

Click on Photo to take you to my DIY video with instructions on how to make this.  FUN!!!

Click on Photo to take you to my DIY video with instructions on how to make this. FUN!!!

Click on any of these ornament photos to take you directly to my DIY video.  I'm so excited to do this together!

Click on any of these ornament photos to take you directly to my DIY video. I’m so excited to do this together!

Click on any "ornament" photo to view the DIY video I made for you.  I'm really so excited at the thought of doing this together!

Click on any “ornament” photo to view the DIY video I made for you. I’m really so excited at the thought of doing this together!

Okay, Let’s check out the video now!  That is where all the action is happening!  I would absolutely LOVE some feedback.  If you like the video style, would you let me know.  If you are more inclined to liking the blog post in its normal format, please let me know that as well.  I’m just wanting to try new things.  Thanks so much and the LORD bless each and everyone of you!!!  MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!

From Our House to Yours, Merry Christmas!!! (Click on photo to arrive at DIY video)

From Our House to Yours, Merry Christmas!!!
(Click on photo to arrive at DIY video)

Free Printable Gift Tags – Made Available by Various Artist and Websites… Thank you generous people!!!

FREE PRINTABLE GIFT TAGS
a few shown below, and here’s a link for a ton more:
 
http://www.google.com/search?q=free+christmas+tags&client=safari&rls=en&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=Ph2mUq-iIMTr2QXO4oGoCA&ved=0CAkQ_AUoAQ&biw=1302&bih=952

 Merry Christmas!!!  Continue reading