Easy DIY Christmas Gifts

With Christmas quickly approaching the pressure is on to get the perfect gift. A gift that is hand made is a great option, weather your on a budget or want to give something from the heart. DIY Christmas Gifts can be personalized and one of a kind.

I wanted to make DIY Christmas gift tutorials to share with you but unfortunately I ran out of time and I want to make sure you all have enough time to make these gifts. So instead Im going to share with you some handmade gift idea that I found from some of my favorite blogs. I will link all of these idea so you can find the tutorials.

5 Easy DIY Christmas Gifts

DIY Patch Laptop Case

This photo belongs to A Beautiful Mess at https://abeautifulmess.com/2017/03/diy-patch-laptop-case.html

I found this DIY on A Beautiful Mess and fell in love. Patches are so trendy right now and they can easily be personalized to fit anyones style. Just make sure you buy the right size case to fit the recipients laptop. This would also be great to do with a backpack, purse, iPad case, or basically anything. The best part is the case doesn’t even have to be fabric, it could be a hard plastic case too.

DIY Arm Knitting Infinity Scarf

This photo belong to ALLDAYCHIC at http://alldaychic.com/arm-knitting-30-minutes-infinity-scarf-diy/

These are a GREAT gift to give to all your girl friends. Once you make a couple of these they take no time at all to make. Last year I gave all the ladies I worked with these infinity scarves for Christmas and they loved it. Their easy to make and by simply switching the yarn your using you can create a totally customized look for each persons sense of style and their a big hit.

Sugar Scrub

This photo belongs to The Little Pine at http://www.thelittlepine.com/top-5-homemade-sugar-scrub-recipes/

Personally I love to pamper myself a couple nights a month. I usually apply a hair mask and a face mask, take a nice long hot shower, exfoliate my skin, put on some nice lotion, and paint my nails. This is my time to relax, destress and focus on myself. I know not everyone gets time to do this so gifting a sugar scrub could encourage someone to take some time for themselves. Along with this you could add a few other spa items and make a whole gift basket.

Fleece Blanket

This photo belongs to pinnedandqepinned at http://pinnedandrepinned.com/how-to-make-a-fleece-blanket/

Handmade blankets are my favorite gift to give. This tutorial is so easy and the finished project it so cute. It requires fleece and pom pom trim. If you don’t have a sewing machine you could also hand sew this. If you don’t know how to sew you could use some fabric glue.

DIY Christmas Ornament

Another great gift is something they can use every Christmas. Christmas decor is something people will see every year and be reminded of you. Check out my DIY Snow Man Ornament tutorial. 

There is only 15 days until Christmas so there is just enough time to make these DIY gifts. You may even decide to make some gifts for yourself this year. I would love to see if you make any of these to leave a photo in the comments or tag me if you post them.

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Finding Motivation

Do you ever feel like life is passing you by while you just sit there and watch? Its like your thinking about how day in and day out you do the same thing over and over again. You ask yourself how you let this happen to you, yet you continue the cycle over again until you realize another week has past with no change.

Well that is how I feel. Ever since we moved I have been lacking motivation. I find myself doing the minimum to make it by and when I try to make a change or do something new I eventually resort back to my old ways. I have recognized that I do not like the person I have become but I cannot find the motivation to change it. I feel like I don’t know who I am any more but I also don’t know who I want to be. My hobbies nowadays include going to work, watching tv, cooking, and sleeping.

My biggest wake up call was lack of energy. I found myself sleeping till 10 am and being tired and ready for bed at 9pm. I noticed at 3pm I would start to drag and lose all motivation. I would watch the clock at work as it slowly ticked by. My work progress would dramatically slow down.

So I decided to make a change because I knew I didn’t want to continue to live like that. I noticed my weekends would be full of energy and I would actually break my habit so I knew I needed to keep it up during the week.

I highly recommend this book.

A while ago I actually bought a book called You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life by Jen Sincero. After I got the book I read a few pages and tossed it to the side. I remember thinking it wasn’t the book for me and decided not to read it. Looking back I realize that at that time I was correct in that moment that it wasn’t the book for me. Now after I found it in a box while unpacking I know it is the book for me. I have read a few chapters and I find myself relating to it a lot. 

It has made me realize that I am afraid to commit to anything because I am afraid of failure. I know that change and success won’t happen over night but I am trying. I highly recommend this book though. It is eye opening and relatable (at least for me). It really makes me think about not only my life currently but in the future. I honestly didn’t think I would be the one to read self help books but I am really enjoying it.

I am enjoying it so much that I have decided to add a new section to my blog called book club. So for those of you who don’t have time to read this book but you really want to you can follow along there. I am going to summarize the book chapter by chapter as I read it. The chapters are pretty short so I may group a couple together. Then hopefully I will keep it up as I continue to read.

Find the book here.

 

WE GOT ENGAGED!

Most girls dream of this moment their entire life and when it finally happened it was as amazing as I always dreamed. I had no idea he was going to propose and was completely surprised.

On March 5, 2017 Conner’s planning and plotting had finally paid off. It was a Sunday. The sun was shining but the wind was cold and you could tell it wasn’t quite time for spring yet. The day before his sister had asked me if we would be her models for a photo shoot. I was happy to help her out, little did I know this photo shoot was so much more than a school project.

We woke up that morning and took our time getting ready. We had on outfits that would match and look good in photos. He didn’t rush me while doing my hair and makeup which is unusual  for him. Once we were ready we all loaded into my car and Conner drove us.

It took us a while to get to our destination but when we did we were ready to go. We went to Cascade metro park to take photos and although it was a cold day it was beautiful outside. The trail was a loop, the plan (so I thought) was to just walk all the way around and pose for picture along the way. We made several stops along the way until we reached a look-out point. I was excited to see the view and walked all the way to the end. I remember the cold wind blowing directly into my face and the view was beautiful. 

I didn’t realize Conner wasn’t by my side because I was so mesmerized by the view. All I heard was him calling my name and I turned around. At first I didn’t see him until I looked down and there he was on one knee. While he spoke to me his face showed many emotions. His eyes showed me he was nervous but his smile showed me he was excited. 

The moment my life changed forever.

Him holding the ring I was shocked how beautiful it was. He did an amazing job of picking out the ring and he did it all by himself. When I said yes he took the ring and slipped it onto my cold finger. Although I had my hands in my coat pocket they were still cold.

In all the excitement of the moment I completely forgot his sister and her boyfriend were photographing us. After taking several photos on the look-out we moved on to our next spot on the trail. Our smiles were big and I remember us giggling frequently through the rest of the day.

Once we had walked the entire loop of the trail we all got back into the car. The surprises didn’t end there though. He had the whole day planned. We drove to meet my parents and sisters at an Italian restaurant we ate at for the first time only a few weeks earlier. His parents met us there as well. We arrived to a large table with balloons, where we enjoyed lunch with our families. Once we were done eating the restaurant staff gave us free ice cream and congratulations.

After that we went home and enjoyed each other company for the rest of the day. March 5th, 2017 will be a day I will always remember.
I am going to be doing an entire wedding series so if you want to hear more about our plans stay tuned for another post coming very soon. Also follow me on Instagram to know when I make new posts.

Spring Clothes Pin Wreath

Today I am going teach you how to make this cute spring clothes pin wreath. This wreath doesn’t require a lot of supplies or time to put together. I got most of my supplies from the dollar store so the cost of this DIY was only $5.

Supplies:

-wire wreath form
-clothes pins
-spray paint
-flowers
-wire edge ribbon
-one pipe cleaner
-hot glue gun

This wreath is spring themed but can easily be modified by using different colors of spray paint and embellishments to be any theme you would like.

Instructions

Start out by determining how many clothes pins you will need to go all the way around your wreath form. I clipped the clothes pins on and ended up needing 60 clothes pins for a 12 inch wire wreath form. 

Next take the clothes pins off the wreath form and decide how many you would like of each color. I did 20 clothes pins of three colors. This is optional but I also spray painted my wreath form white because it will show through the clothes pins. Once all the clothes pins and wreath form are painted just wait for them to dry. 

Once they are dry begin clipping them to the wreath form. Place one clip on the inner two wires. Then the next clip on the middle two wires. Repeat this all the way around creating a pattern with the clothes pin colors and placement. 

Once the clothes pins are all the way around your wreath form you will notice their is probably an area that their is an unpleasant gap between the clothes pins. This is where you will place your bow. My bow has three loops on each side. Simply attach the bow using the pipe cleaner and trimming off the excess on the back.

Once the bow is attached trim the edges to make the tails even. I chose the pointed ended but it is completely up to you.

Next add your embellishments to the wreath. I chose to use fake flowers and hot glued them to the clothes pins. 

I finished my wreath by adding on the trimmings from my ribbon to tie it all together.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thats it! Simple. Easy. Quick.

The great thing about this wreath is that the clothes pins are not permanently attached to the wreath form so it can easily be remade to work with another Holliday or season.

Meal Prep: Spicy Chicken Burrito Bowl



Spicy Chicken Burrito Bowls are easy to make and are great for a family meal or meal prepping. This recipe can easily be changed to fit your personal likes and dietary needs. Burrito bowls are my favorite to meal prep because they can be made so many different ways and are fast and easy to make. They also can have very few ingredients and can be very cheep to make. The total cost for all the ingredients I list below was about $20 so it equals out to be $2 a meal.

This recipe makes ten servings. I only meal prep one meal of my day, so the qualities I am using makes 5 meals for my boyfriend and I. His meals are slightly larger than mine so if you are making them all the same size you may get more or less meals. I also do not put peppers in his meals so you may want to use more than two peppers.

Ingredients:
  • 3 Cups of brown rice
  • 2 green peppers
  • 1 extra large white onion
  • 5 pounds of chicken breast
  • Hot chunky salsa
  • 2 packs of taco seasoning (1 hot and the other low sodium)
  • 1 can of corn
  • 2 cans of low sodium black beans

Instructions
  1. Start by cooking your chicken in the hot taco seasoning. I take my chicken breasts and cut them in half so each piece of chicken is about a half pound. I cook mine in a pressure cooker because it only takes 20 minutes to completely cook all of the chicken. When cooking the chicken in the pressure cooker make sure to add plenty of water so the chicken will be juicy and tender.
  2. While my chicken is cooking, I take a medium sauce pan and boil water for my brown rice. I make the amount of rice based on the suggested serving size and multiply it by ten since I am making ten meals. Simply cook the rice following the instructions provided on the package. Minute rice is the fastest this time I accidentally got the kind of rice that takes 45 minutes to cook but it worked just fine.
  3. While I have those both going I prep my papers and onions. I just chopped them up into large chunks. Then in a large skillet I heated up some olive oil. Next sautéed my peppers and onions in the low sodium taco seasoning. I sauté them separately since my boyfriend does not like prepares but you can do them at the same time. You can also use other colors of peppers as well.
  4. Once the vegetables and rice are finished cooking I turn the stove off and let them cool. While they are cooling I open all my cans and strain my black beans and corn.
  5. When portion out all my ingredients I portion them out so they are all equal. I do not measure anything. I know that each container gets a half of chicken breast then I work from there. I take tablespoon full of my beans and corn. I put one spoonful in each container then portion out the remaining. I do the same for the rest of the ingredients.
  6. After portioning them all out I let them cool then add lids and put them in the refrigerator for the week.

This recipe can be easily changed and altered. I like making this and adding different ingredients to keep things different. By simply changing some of the ingredients this is a great base recipe for meal prepping. If you want to see more of what I eat follow me on Instagram!

10 Tips for Keeping Healthy

Four months ago many of us set the New Years resolution of getting healthy, loosing weight, or something along those lines. My personal goal is to create a healthy life style and look good for summer. Now that springs here we are looking at our progress and may not be happy with how we are doing so far. So I am going to share with you ten tips of things I do to keep healthy.

1. Eat Clean

Personally what I eat affects how I feel. So I try to eat real whole foods. I make sure to have plenty of fruits and vegetables in my house. I also avoid buying food I know I shouldn’t have. Then when I want ice cream or candy I have to go out of my way to get some.

2. Drink ALOT of water

Water is liquid gold. Drinking water has so many amazing benefits that we often forget about. Not only does our body need it to function but it does so much more. Water helps with hair growth, weight loss, clear skin, and digestion, just to name a few. A glass of water in the morning helps to wake you up and a glass of water before bed helps prevent heart attacks.

3. Exercise

You don’t have to hit the gym every day for three hours to get healthy. You actually don’t have to go to the gym at all. When it comes to exercise any type of physical activity is better than none. The most important thing is that you are having fun and enjoy the exercise you are doing. My favorites are going for walks, going to trampoline parks, and swimming. There is so many forms of exercise that you could do outside the gym that you may have never thought of.

4. Sleep

Yep thats right! Getting the proper amount of sleep can keep you healthy. Try to get at least 7-9 hours of sleep. Getting to little or to much sleep can have negative effects on your body.

5. Wash your hands

Some water, soap, and time can boost your immune system and fight of harmful germs.

6. Stay Social

Keep healthy physically and mentally. Avoid turning inwards and keeping to yourself. Try to make time for friends and family and spend time with them. I try to see a person and create a social interaction outside my house or work at least once a week. Plus taking the time to hang out with friends and family is a great break from other things you may have going on.

7. Be positive

Again with mental health. Keeping positive mentally with help keep you healthy physically. I find as soon as I have negative thought about something in my life I automatically doom myself from succeeding. I would rather fail because I could truly not do something then fail because I was negative in my mind and it reflected in my body.

8. Keep things neat and organized

We all have our own standards when it comes to keeping things neat and organized but by following those guidelines we will help keep things in balance. I know personally when my room is a mess it effects my sleeping and productivity. By keeping things neat and organized I am not stressing about the mess and I am able to focus on other parts of my life.

9. Don’t Stress

Having stress effects us not only mentally but physically as well. So make sure to do what you can to relieve, reduce and avoid stress. If you have stress about something you cannot control then stay social and talk with a friend or professional about it.

10. Love

Have a supportive relationship! Weather it be with a family member, friends, significant other, or even activity. Doing what you love is important.

My go to Basic Craft Tools

 

Crafting can quickly become a large hobby. By large I mean in size, price, and time. I love making new items and trying out new crafting techniques but that also means acquiring more supplies. I often get to the point in my craft room where it looks messy because I have so much supplies and not enough space.  So here I have compiled my go to basic craft tools. These are items I know to always have stocked and would make a great starter kit for any one who is just getting into crafting.

My Top 10 Essential Craft Tools

  1. Glue Gun: 
    I personally use a cooler temperature hot glue gun. I found it prevents me from burning my hands as much but it also dries faster allowing me to not hold onto the items as along. If you want to see the exact one I use go here.
  2. E6000 Industrial Strength Adhesive
    This glue is amazing. It bonds to almost anything and has a very strong hold. I would recommend using this glue over hot glue if you have time to let it dry. It comes in several different forms here is one. I personally have it in liquid glue and as spray.
  3. Modpodge
    This is what I use when I need to seal something or for paper. I like to also use it when I am painting to add texture. The one good but also bad point about this is that it is cleaned up by water so when using it to seal items I always make sure to go over it with clear spray paint. This also comes in several forms I personally have the gloss finish.
  4. Good Scissors
    I buy scissors that are for sewing because they are always a lot sharper. I also like to have several sizes on hand. Personally the variety pack to be the best deal for me.
  5. X-acto knife
    This is one of my less used tools but when I need it I have it. I like this tool because you can change he blade when it gets dull and you don’t have to replace the whole tool.
  6. A Ruler
    Nothing to major or expensive. I have mine from when I had an art box for school. Just something to help with straight lines and measurements. If you think you are going to be doing a lot of paper crafting I would recommend a metal ruler. That way you can use it with your X-acto knife until you invest in a paper cutter.
  7. A Cutting Mat
    This could double as a ruler if you would like. I have several sizes of these. a large one that covers my entire sewing table. A medium size one like I have linked above which is great for covering other tables and a small one for traveling. A cutting mat not only protects my surfaces from cutting but marker bleed, paint, glue, and other craft supplies. It also is a great idea if you do not have a permanent crafting station. You could easily pick it up and relocate your crafting without having to worry about smudging the paint or wet surface.
  8. Writing utensils
    I have an old jar that I have a few pens and pencils stored in for easy reach. Nothing to fancy.
  9. Sketch paper
    Lately I have really like dotted paper when working with size drawings. I keep a bullet journal notebook close by to jot down notes and sketches. Any paper will do when I need to write something down quick I often use anything I can write on.
  10. Cheep Foam Brushes
    The cheeper the better. I use these with modpodge and just throw them away when I am finished. This is one item I keep finding new uses for and will always keep on hand.

There you have it my basic go to craft tools. They are all pretty inexpensive and can be found in most craft stores. If I were to throw together a travel craft bag most of these items would make it in there. The other nice thing is most of these items are going to last you a long time. So spending a little more money on good quality would be completely worth it.

Here’s to Something New…

When I first started my blog almost a year ago my main focus was DIY, or so I thought. I realize now that my focus was crafting. I love to craft and being creative but it truly works your mind. Lately I my mind hasn’t been where it needs to be, to happily craft like I want. I never do anything I don’t want to so I stopped crafting, which meant I stopped blogging.

I had time to take a step back an evaluate my life. I am at a time in my life where things are changing and I am experiencing major life events. I realized that DIY does not only apply to crafting but so many aspects in our lives.

I want my blog to be a place to share with others and connects with them. I want to share my creative ideas along with other things happening in my life. I want this to be a place for people to come and read about me and my story. I want my readers to know that their are other people experiencing what they may be going through weather it be good, bad or creative. I want my readers to know that I am a real person with a real life.

Something to look forward to.

From now on I am going to share with you not only my crafts and creative ideas but things happening in my life and world around me. I want all of you to know me and feel connected to me through life and creativity. I want to create a community where we can all go to get guidance, reassurance, and support. Connect with other through comments, to hear not only about me but about others as well.

Here is to new adventures and experiences.

Post-College Depression?

I graduated college, got my bachelors degree, I don’t have to pay $6,000 every three months to work my ass off and be stressed so what am I instead? Depressed? I should be happy and feel free.

Well I am not. These last few weeks have been the biggest emotional roller coaster of my life. College was amazing, literally the best time of my life. I had so many friends, I was very social, and I was excited to graduate. Suddenly I finished school and I feel like an Eagle that hasn’t fully spread its wings.

I thought I was ready for adulthood but I guess I’m not.

I had in my head this image of what life was going to be like after college and I feel like I’m in a dark tunnel searching for my flash light so I can navigate my way out. I feel confused and alone. I am looking for jobs but I don’t know what type of career I should enter. I have absolutely no clue what my life purpose is.

I took a week and truly thought about going back to school. While it would mean more school loans and debt, it would also mean a clear goal. Another degree. Then I took the time to think about and it and I realized that in a few years I would be right back to where I am now, only with more pressure for me to find a good paying job because I would have double the debt.

So that brings me back to loneliness. I know I have family, my boyfriend, and friends to talk to this about but I feel like none of them understand where I am coming from. My parents didn’t go to college and I feel like they are pushing me to find a good paying job because they know my loan payments will default back to them if I can’t pay. My boyfriend graduated a semester earlier than me but had several job opportunities to fall back on.

I am in the tunnel again. I talk to myself and tell my self everything will work out with the reassurance from my echo but something about the voice coming back to me doesn’t sound so certain. I applied for about 30 jobs but I find myself going back to the job application asking myself if I am truly capable of doing these jobs. I even have a job interview tomorrow and I am second guessing my self.

To make matters worse I think I am so nervous about finding a new job because the past couple jobs I was not happy with. I worked as a marketer for a gutter company for a few months and I quickly realized that it wasn’t the right place for me. So I put in my two week notice. After that I started helping my grandparents at their furniture store. They asked me to fill in one day for them in the office answering the phones. Six months later I hold three positions in the company and work their full time.

The first few months of work were great but I was still in school. When I graduated I busted butt there and about a week later I inched a littler further into adult hood. I realized that while in some aspects the job was great for me. Fast paced, every day brought some thing new, I was constantly learning, and I got to work with people. Other aspects of the job are not what I am looking for. The main reason being it takes me 50 minutes to get to work and back.

I can never remember a time in my life I was happy. I am know for a bubbly personality and making others feel happy. Now I don’t want to talk to any one and I feel this darkness inside me. I know I can over come this but I feel like what I am feeling right now will last forever.

Cheap and Easy Ceramic Tile Coaster

Hi everyone and happy Monday. This week we are starting off with a very simple DIY. This project requires very little crafting skills, money, or time. These coasters would make a great gift or the perfect addition to any room in the house that not only add a decor element but also serve a purpose.

Supplies needed:

To get started measure your tiles to determine the size to cut the paper. I chose to leave a boarder around my paper so the tile was visible but that is optional. I then used the back of an old note book to crate a stencil for all my coasters.

Once you have your measurements trace the stencil on your paper and cut.

Next apply a thin layer of mod-podge on the entire top surface of the tile and place down you piece of paper. If you don’t want to use scrap book paper you could easily use some news paper, wrapping paper, even temporary tattoos.

Use your ruler to press the paper down and remove and bubbles.

Wait about 15 to 20 minutes for your first layer of glue to dry and apply another layer of glue completely covering your paper or design element. Make sure to pay extra attention to the edged to prevent it from peeling off in the future.

Repeat the last step five more times allowing the glue to dry completely between coats.

Once you have all your layers of glue applied there should be a nice layer of protection over the paper. To fully seal the coaster spray two or three coats of clear spray paint on the coaster and allow it to dry completely.

By spray painting clear over the mod-podge you are creating another layer of protection so the glue will not be washed off by condensation when the coasters are used.

To finish your coasters apply a piece or felt or cork to the bottom of the coaster to protect the surface they will be sitting on. I bought the sticky back felt circles to easily peel and stick on all the corners of my coasters.

Thats all there is to it. This project is great to make for gifts or even to sell at craft shows. They would be so easy to personalize and add unique elements to. I would love to see how you make this project. If you make these be sure to tag me on Instagram or leave a picture in the comments below. Also make sure you follow me on Instagram to know when the next blog will be posted as well as on Youtube so you can see all the videos that go with my posts.