Monday, June 25, 2012

Letter of the Week {B}

Summer is here and the first year of preschool over! We need some fun activities too keep us entertained, but with some intellectual value. This summer we're going with letter themes. It's perfect to help my youngest who is learning to talk and my preschooler who is learning to read and write.

Here are the Letter of the Week {A} activities if you missed them.

Now on to B!

I have two boys, so naturally we went with Bugs and Balls!

  • Make fun summer Bugs (from Mommyness Adventures) by painting cans and adding pipe cleaner wings.
  • Go on a Bug hunt. (kit from Dollar Tree)

  • Write all the B words for the activities, foods, etc.
  • Wear a fun Bug shirt or something Blue.
  • Watch a Bug through a jar. We had a cocoon we found in the garden in a jar and the Bug inside just happened to hatch on B week! It was a pretty orange moth. Rolly poleys are great for this too!
  • Little brother used the tweezers from the bug kit for a hunt for another B word. ;)

  • Make a Ball pit in a Big Box.
  • Dump them all out and collect the Balls with a Basket counting them as you go.

Photo credits: BroccoliBeefBananasBerriesBreadBaked Beans

  • Eat foods that begin with B. 

All in all, B was a pretty rockin' letter of the week! We had a ton of fun!

What fun B activities can you think of?

P.S. Don't forget to sign up for free Tipsy updates via RSS or email.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Real.Life.Photography {GIVEAWAY}

If you're familiar with Rebecca Cooper's gorgeous bloSimple As That then you already know that she is super talented.  She has adorable party and project ideas and her photos are pretty much to die for.

I am so excited to be part of the welcoming committee to share with you Rebecca's newest book (ya, it's her third, she's that amazing) Real.Life.Photography.

I had the chance to enjoy the book already and it is fabulous; packed with tips, techniques and  photo editing tricks.  Also, Christy from Addy Lane created a fun set of actions called the Simple Fixes Action Set that are the perfect to go along with her book.  I had a chance to test those out too and they are great! 

The book has 6 chapters full of useful advice and of course is full of awe inspiring images. Wanna take a peek?

I love that she shares "HOW I GOT THE SHOTS" notations to detail techniques used for the images.  I seriously had multiple ah-ha moments while reading. Her tips are simple, but were totally eye opening for me. 

I am a total list girl so I also love that she gives a list of suggested photos to capture from everyday life. I feel like in the long run these are the photos of the moments we will cherish.

So, now that I have shown you how jealous I am of her skills and how I love that her book gives me a  chance at improving mine, it's time for the good part where you have the chance at your own!

One lucky Tipsy reader gets a copy of Real. Life.Photo graphy and a set of Simple Fixes Action Set (PSE or PS version, your choice!)

For those of you who want to get your hands on either of these items now, you can purchase them for the early bird price of $9.99 each (the regular price will be $12.99). If you purchase both the book and the actions together, you can get 20% off by using the promo code PHOTOFIX at checkout.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

American Stars and Stripes Pillow

I love our flag. The colors are awesome. It's clean and crisp and represents so much! I love decorating with it. I also love things that look like they took a lot of work when they were SUPER easy! Thus, I was thrilled to find this American flag placemat for like $3 that would so easily translate in to a faux quilted throw pillow.

American Stars and Stripes Placemat Pillow

Placemat (from ShopKo)
Seam Ripper
Binder clips

Use the seam ripper to make an opening about half the width of the side of the placemat.

Stuff tight with Polyfil. Hold opening closed with binder clips and stitch closed using the existing holes from the original thread. Slide the binder clips along as you need more space to stitch.

Find the perfect spot for your cute new American stars and stripes pillow!

P.S. Don't forget to sign up for free Tipsy updates via RSS or email.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Letter of the Week {A}

Summer is here and my little guy finished his first year of preschool! I wanted some fun activities too keep us entertained, but with some intellectual value. I decided that this summer we would go with letter themes. It is perfect to help my youngest who is learning to talk and my preschooler who is learning to read and write.

We of course kicked things off with A as the letter of the week.

We folded paper Airplanes and had an Airplane flying contest.
Then, we did a puzzle of America, being sure to point out Arizona, Alaska, Alabama, Arkansas and the Atlantic Ocean.
I had my four year old write all the letter of the week words in Apple Green crayon to practice his writing.

Photo credits: AnticsABC bookAirplaneAmerica puzzle

We pretended to be Apes and ate Applesauce for a snack.
Then, we read two books Antics and Dr. Suess's ABC.

We had a whole other list of fun A things, but we will save them for the next time around.

What other fun A activities can you think of?

P.S. Don't forget to sign up for free Tipsy updates via RSS or email.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Becoming a Handy{woman}

So, at the SNAP conference I was totally inspired by Ana and Stacy and Brittany and decided it was high time I learned to use some tools. I am pretty girly and sometimes if I am quite honest tools scare me a little. I have used them here and there, but usually just call in the big guns when I need something done and have the hubs do it. But, with him in a Master's program I decided no more waiting I needed some basic training.

I had the perfect project to start on. My office door frame was broken and so there was no way to keep my toddler son out. Even if it was locked it would push right open. Disaster! He would go in every five minutes since the door to the office is off the playroom. Last week was the final straw. Once he had 10 bottles of paint with three open by the time I got down the stairs and the next time was bottles of mod podge and adhesives. It was time.

I talked to the Mr. and he was totally awesome to run right to the hardware store with me for one of those big door plates. I wanted a quick fix that could be done that night until we had time for the whole frame to be replaced. I was so thrilled until we got it home and realized that the frame was so broken that there was nothing for the plate to screw in to. Boo.

Thank goodness the hubs is pretty darn handy and figured out how we could cut out a rectangle and use a piece of wood from the garage to fill the gap and be able to install the plate. A set of chisels probably would have been helpful in that situation. I won't tell you how we did it because it is so wrong it is not to be admitted.

So, why the long story? Well, I am so proud to say that I used a drill (even changed the bit), screwdriver, nail gun, air compressor, nail set (the little tool that lets you pound in a finishing nail) and hammer. Baby steps people. The hubs laughed at me because every time he picked up a new tool I would say "let me do it" and proceed to make him instruct me. I had used a lot of these previously, but in supervised settings. ;) Now, I feel like I could use them on my own which makes me embarrassingly giddy.

I even wandered around Harbor Freight Tools looking around for Father's Day, but coming out with some ideas for myself. My birthday is Saturday and I can tell you it is going to include something loud with a plug. :)

Are you a tool pro or does using a saw make you want to close your eyes and hope for the best too? (Of course please never do that. And wear safety goggles.)

This post was sponsored by Harbor Freight, but my stories are my own and I really did wish I had a set of chisels. ;)

P.S. Don't forget to sign up for free Tipsy updates via RSS or email.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Last Minute Graduation Gift

So I'm a little late on this, but I thought it turned out too cute not to share. We were invited to a cousin's high school graduation party and I wanted to take her a little graduation gift.

I figured what would a college bound teen need more than cold hard cash so I rolled with it. ha ha. Get it, rolled with it. I found the cute box in the silhouette store, cut it out using black cardstock and rolled the bills using red ribbon to secure them to look like little diplomas. Her high school colors and black and red so it was a perfect graduation gift.

Easy and well received. Graduation gift success!

P.S. Don't forget to sign up for free Tipsy updates via RSS or email.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Organize Your Creative Space

Remember when I took that paper clutter classI loved it and just recently did another one of Aby Garvey's mini guides "Declutter to make room for a better life." I got rid of 5 boxes of books, dvds, and clothes so far. 

It's amazing how having an intention when clearing out makes all the difference. It feels so good to clear out things standing in the way of your goals. I used to feel guilty getting rid of perfectly good things thinking I would need them someday, but now I know I only need the things that are helping me in the direction I am heading. It's seriously so freeing!

I loved my first two experiences with Aby, so I just signed up for the Organize your creative space workshop and I can't wait for it to start. My craft area could use a mega face lift. In fact, I better take a before shot to document the looming transformation! 

Wanna join me? It starts this Thursday, June 7th and is all done online so you can hop on whenever you have free time! Meet me in the forum and we'll share our successes and struggles on our way to creative area bliss.

Oh and you should check out Aby's pinterest boards because they are awesome.

Diclosure: I received complimentary enrollment in the Organize Your Creative Space workshop for sharing my experience. But, let's be real, I would have enrolled anyway because Aby is genius. 

P.S. Don't forget to sign up for free Tipsy updates via RSS or email.