Category: Creative Joy
|May 17, 2013||Filled under Chicago Joy, Crafts, Creative Joy, Deals/Discounts, Savings Joy|
Attention bakers, crafters, and event/wedding planners! Wilton is having their annual tent sale in Woodridge, IL, Friday, May 31st, through Tuesday, June 18th! Wilton is best known for their baking and cake decorating supplies, but they also have paper crafts and accessories for parties and weddings. We actually bought some things at the Wilton tent sale 6 years ago for our wedding and were able to save a ton of money on our unity candle, cake server set, champagne flutes, wedding favor boxes, ring bearer pillows, and flower girl baskets!
The Wilton Tent Sale will be located at:
2240 W. 75th Street
Woodridge, IL 60517
Their hours of operation will be:
Doors will open May 31st, 2013 at 1:00 pm
Mon – Fri 9:00 am – 8:00 pm
Sat & Sun 8:00 am – 6:00 pm
Disclosure: This post may include affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure Policy for additional information.
|May 9, 2013||Filled under Crafts, Creative Joy|
2013 seems to be the year of babies! We’re not even halfway through the year yet, and we’ve already welcomed 4 babies into my husband and my families and 3 babies from our friends. I love giving diaper cakes as presents because they’re practical (you can never use too many diapers), really cute, and personal since they are homemade with love. I am very lucky that my husband is willing to help me with these types of things and actually helped me come up with an easy and pretty quick way to make them.
What you’ll need:
- Diapers (size 0 or 1 for newborns)
- Basket for the base
- Ribbon (we use curling ribbon)
- Wooden sticks like thick bamboo skewers or chopsticks to work as a dowel
- Small rubber bands (optional)
- Accessories such as baby bottles; small bottles of shampoo, baby wash, lotion, etc; pacifiers; small books
- Cellophane wrap
Roll each diaper and place as many as you can tightly in the basket. To make it easier, use a rubber band to hold each diaper in a roll or group of diapers. Once the basket is filled, make 2 or 3 more layers of rolled diapers for the cake by tying ribbon around the group of diapers. Tuck the accessories into the ribbon to be included in each layer. To hold the layers of the cake to the basket together, put a wooding stick in the middle of the diapers in the basket so it is sticking up and place each additional layer over top so the stick acts as a dowel. Use ribbon to secure a stuffed animal or other accessory at the top of the diaper cake, and have fun decorating! Lastly, wrap the entire diaper cake in cellophane and secure the opening at the top with ribbon.
Disclosure: This post may include affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure Policy for additional information.
|April 23, 2013||Filled under Chicago Joy, Crafts, Creative Joy, Kids & Babies, Mommy Joy|
Last week has to have been the craziest week America has seen in a very long time, if ever! Here’s what we were up to…
Last Sunday, we took a FREE tile backsplash workshop at Home Depot:
Last Monday, we prayed for the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing and their families:
Then, we stayed up almost all night putting up our back splash:
Last Wednesday, we prayed some more for the victims of the West, Texas fertilizer plant explosion and their families:
That night, we braced ourselves for the storm that was heading towards the Chicago area. We checked on our basement and sump pump, which were fine, before going to bed, but we ended up having to deal with this since Thursday morning:
We stayed up again Thursday and Friday nights cleaning up the basement and prayed for all those who were affected by the flood much worse than we are. We then prayed some more for the residents of Cambridge, Watertown, and other areas surrounding Boston:
Saturday was very busy with my daughter’s gymnastics and dance classes, my husband being called into work, and a wedding we attended over an hour away:
Sunday was another busy day with my Goddaughter’s first communion. I spent the morning making these chocolate covered pretzel rods for party favors:
What I didn’t do last week…
Sleep and study!
What was your week like last week or what happened during your craziest week? Leave me a comment below
And make sure to watch for more posts about installing our mosaic tile backsplash, dealing with flood damage, and making chocolate covered pretzel party favors!
Disclosure: This post may include affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure Policy for additional information.
|February 18, 2013||Filled under Creative Joy, Deals/Discounts, Savings Joy|
I absolutely LOVE this picture from my wedding almost 5 years ago. Unfortunately, along with many other wedding photos, it still has not made it’s way into any sort of photo album for my husband and I to look at and reminisce about that wonderful day. I have prints, a nice wedding scrapbook, and a bunch of wedding embellishments with maybe 3 scrapbook pages completed…somewhere. So, yes, it has taken me almost 5 years to finally admit that I will never have time to finish our wedding scrapbook, and I might as well put our favorite photos into a photo book. Has this ever happened to you?
Luckily for me, at the same moment I thought of making a photo book of my wedding, a good number of websites are having photo book sales, yay! Here’s what I found:
- Mixbook: Up to 40% off everything through Monday, 2/18, with coupon code LOVEMX.
- Walgreens Photo: 12×12 custom cover photo book for only $22 (reg. $49.99) through Wednesday, 2/20, with coupon code CUSTOM12X12. Make sure to check out all of their special offers for details.
- Picaboo: 50% off classic books, cards, calendars, and canvas prints through Wednesday, 2/20, with code PRESIDENT50. New customers get 55% off photo books.
- Shutterfly: Up to 30% off photo books through Wednesday, 2/20. Also, get FREE shipping on orders of $30 or more with code SHIP30, and save 20% on canvas prints, acrylic prints, dimensional wall art, magnets, and mouse pads (make sure to check out all of their special offers).
- Tiny Prints: Up to 30% off photo books through Wednesday, 2/20. Also, get FREE shipping on orders of $30 or more with code fship30, and save 15% sitewide through Tuesday, 2/19, with code 15febsw.
- Wedding Paper Divas: Up to 30% off wedding photo books through Wednesday, 2/20. Also, get FREE shipping on orders of $30 or more with code FSHIP30.
- My Publisher: 50% off photo books and canvas prints orders over $100 or 25% off photo books and canvas prints orders over $50 through Tuesday, February 19th, with code FEB2550. New customers also get a FREE copy of their photo book with their first order.
- Smilebooks: 40% off all photo books soft covers through Sunday, 3/17, with coupon code CRAZYPATRICK40.
- *Snapfish: 60% off 2 or more photo books through Monday, 2/25, with coupon code PRESBOOKS; 40% off additional photo book pages through Thursday, 2/28, with coupon code 40PAGES; and FREE shipping on orders of $30 or more through 2/28 with coupon code FEBFS30 (*Updated 2/20 – Thanks Katie!)
Leave me a comment below if you know of any other great photo book deals I’ve missed! I would also love to know what you’re next photo book or scrapbook project is! After I finish our wedding, I will be putting together some photo books of my daughter: newborn photos, her first year, her second year, and maybe one for each birthday party. I would also like to maybe put one together of my honeymoon.
|February 12, 2013||Filled under Creative Joy|
Welcome to My Thoughts Monday (MTM)! I know, it’s Tuesday, but it looks like I caught the bug that’s been going around, so I was not able to post this yesterday. But since Valentine’s Day is coming up, I wanted to make sure to share a couple things with you.
My Best Valentine’s Day Gift
I can’t believe this Thursday will be my husband and my 10th Valentine’s Day together! Although he has given me many great presents, the best one has to be from our very first Valentine’s Day together. We were broke and in college when we first started dating, so we did not have much money to spend on going out. I didn’t know it at the time, but while I was at work that Valentine’s Day, John was hard at work back at my studio. I came home to a scavenger hunt around my apartment waiting for me! My studio was not very big, so I was surprised that John was able to hide each clue so well. I was also impressed that every clue rhymed and each one had a really nice flower hidden with it. I think one of them said something like “Congratulations on finding this clue. You’ll find the next one where you keep your shoes.” I was smiling throughout the whole thing! I was really into scrapbooking at the time, so at the end of the scavenger hunt was a new page in my scrapbook made by my future husband. He even drew a picture of us using my highlighters and folded a heart with construction paper that had a really sweet note inside. It was the least expensive Valentine’s Day gift I have ever received, but it definitely was the BEST and most thoughtful present ever. No wonder why I married him
Last week, my cousin and her boyfriend of almost 11 years were here in Chicago visiting from Arizona for his birthday. He has never lived in cold weather so we thought it was a little strange that he would actually ask to spend his birthday in the middle of winter out here instead of stay in the 75 degree sunny weather of Arizona, but now that I think about it, maybe he planned it this whole time. My cousin turned 30 a few months ago and since she and her boyfriend have been together for what seems like forever, we had been teasing them about getting married for awhile. They went to Hawaii for her birthday, so we expected them to come back engaged, but they didn’t. Then, while we were in Arizona for Christmas, everyone was watching my cousin open her presents, probably anticipating an engagement ring, but still, nothing. During the Superbowl, we teased my cousin’s boyfriend again about getting married and he laughed and said “Oh, you’ll see.” It was a little cryptic, but even after that, I did not expect anything to happen.
Before I go on, here’s a little background about my family: We are like the crazy families you see on TV or in the movies with tons of aunts, uncles, and cousins that are there for every special moment in your life (we had about 50 people from Chicago, Arizona, Indiana, and Michigan go to Milwaukee for my daughter’s baptism, and I had close to 30 people from Chicago and Arizona attend my college graduation at Marquette). Usually on TV or the movies, these families are Greek or Italian…mine is Filipino. Although this also means that there are a lot of people that know all about your business, I think it’s awesome, and I would not have it any other way. Part of my family did not move to Arizona from Chicago until I was in high school and college so we are all very close.
Continuing with the story: Last Tuesday, my cousin invited our whole family (21 of us) to dinner at Lou Malnati’s to celebrate her boyfriend’s birthday. We waited for most of the other parties to clear out of the room so we could gather together to take a big family picture. After the picture, my cousin’s boyfriend, who is actually pretty quiet, raised his hand and kind of yelled, “Thank you all for coming out to celebrate my birthday. Since the whole family is here…” Then, he reached into his pocket and hid his hand under his scarf until my cousin was looking. He then went down on one knee and asked my cousin to marry him! I was so happy, I had tears in my eyes, I jumped up and down, and we all cheered. Thank goodness I had my phone in my hand to capture some great pictures! I am so honored to have witnessed it especially since my cousin and I grew up like sisters living 2 houses down from each other growing up. And I’m so happy that she found someone that understands exactly how important family is to us. I just had to share the joyous news
What are some of your favorite Valentine’s Day or proposal stories? Leave me a comment below!
|January 7, 2013||Filled under Coupons, Creative Joy, Savings Joy, Scrapbooking|
If you love to scrapbook like I do, and you haven’t done so already, you should check out the store Archiver’s! Archiver’s is one of my favorite places to buy scrapbooking supplies and learn new techniques for scrapbooking. They often hold events and workshops, and most stores even have a room for you to scrapbook in, so you can use their supplies! Plus, they have plenty ideas for cards and gifts!
Friday and Saturday nights from 5 to 11 pm, Archiver’s also holds Scrap Mania, where you get to sit and crop for 6 hours, win prizes, and get 20% off your entire purchase for the night! I have not attended Scrap Mania in awhile, but it was always a good time for me to spend with friends, get some scrapping done, and exchange ideas with other scrappers. Each seat costs $10, but if you reserve your seat now through January 31st to use by June 30th, you’ll get a FREE seat with every seat you purchase, up to 5 seats! Click here for more details.
*See coupons for details.
|December 29, 2012||Filled under Creative Joy, Freebies, Savings Joy|
Now through January 31st, get a FREE customizable 2013 wall calendar from Vistaprint! They have over 300 design templates to choose from and you can add your photos to the cover and each month of the year. They have different layouts available depending on how many photos you would like to add to each page. You can also add icons and special occasions such as birthdays and anniversaries to specific dates throughout the calendar. All you need to pay for is shipping and processing, which starts at $5.32!
I made a 2013 wall calendar today on Vistaprint as an extra present for a family member, and I was impressed with how easy it was! The most difficult part for me was finding and choosing the photos to use for each month. I especially love the ability to upload my photos from my computer, Facebook, Flickr, Picasa, or Dropbox accounts. My only struggle was that some of my photos that I tried to use as a larger sized picture on the page were too low of a resolution since I had to pull many photos from others’ Facebook pages. But I think our family will really love having a personalized calendar, and I’m excited for them to receive it!
Vistaprint is actually really great, and I’ve used them for my business cards, photo wall calendars in the past, return address rubber stamp, and thank you cards. By ordering some products, I’ve also received free post-it notes and personalized pens. I love that they offer these free products where all you have to pay for is shipping!
|October 21, 2012||Filled under Crafts, Creative Joy, Kids & Babies, Mommy Joy, Savings Joy|
About a month ago, we had a Super Why! themed birthday party for my daughter. I knew I wanted to dress her up as Princess Presto (Pea), but the only costumes I could find were at least $50, which I was not willing to pay, especially since she probably will only wear the dress once. I found the Dora Ballet Dress pictured on the left on sale at Target for less than $10 and decided to turn into a Princess Presto dress. If you’re not able to find this dress, you can use any inexpensive dress-up dress out there or even check out a thrift store, consignment store, or Goodwill. There are usually some great finds, especially for Halloween costumes!
Except for the dress, I bought all my supplies at Michael’s:
- Aleene’s No-Sew Fabric Glue – $2.99
- 10 yards of satin ribbon – $0.50 each spool (1/2-5/8 inch width works best)
- 3 yards of sparkly green Halloween ribbon – $1.99 each spool
- 5 feet Tinkerbell rhinestone ribbon – $5.99 (I chose to splurge on this, but you can go without it)
- 6 pack of 8.5″ x 11″ glitter foam adhesive – $4.79 (you can also get single sheets, which would be less expensive if you don’t plan on using all 6 colors)
These are the regular prices without coupon. Make sure you check Michael’s website to see what coupons are available when you go.
Please keep in mind that the No-Sew Fabric Glue is a TEMPORARY adhesive. It holds up well, but the costume will fall apart if you wash it. They do have permanent fabric glue available that can be washed, but if you plan on having your child wear the costume multiple times, I would recommend you sew everything on to make sure everything is secure. Scissors and a de-threader will also be helpful for this project.
The first thing I did was use the de-threader to gently remove all of the extra embellishments that were on the dress that I did not want such as the tulle sleeves, zig-zag ribbon on the front of the dress and around the neck, and the Dora flower. Then I glued the ribbon at the bottom of each ruffle of the dress. I did this in 1 1/2-2 inch sections making sure the glue dried before moving onto the next section. For the belt, I layered light green satin ribbon with glue until it was the width that I wanted. For the middle, I cut out a circle from the green glitter foam and star from the purple glitter foam and put the star on top of the circle. I then glued it onto the belt on the dress. Lastly, I glued the rhinestone ribbon onto the front of the dress and lining the neck and sleeves. I placed a dot of glue on the back of each rhinestone to do this. The rhinestones actually did not hold up too well with the glue, so if you choose to use them, I recommend sewing around the string in between each rhinestone to secure it to the fabric. Otherwise lil Lia’s dress held up her whole birthday party including the bounce house!
Hopefully, these tips help you this Halloween or any other occasion you or your little one may need to dress up for! If you have any questions or any other tips, please leave me a comment below HAPPY CRAFTING!
|September 18, 2012||Filled under Creative Joy|
Welcome to My Thoughts Monday (MTM)! On MTM, I’ll be posting about what I think about current events/activities or random thoughts I may have collected each week. Please note, that I do not claim to be any sort of expert on anything I write about, unless it is something I have experienced personally or have received formal education on.
CPS Teachers Strike Continues
The teachers strike in the Chicago Public Schools that started last Monday continues and students will not return until this Wednesday at the earliest. Mayor Rahm Emanuel filed an injunction stating that the strike is illegal in an attempt to force teachers back to school. I really don’t have very many extra thoughts about this subject, except that it is extremely unfortunate. Although I don’t fully understand why the teachers are striking, I am not sure that forcing them back to work will be of benefit to anyone, especially if they are not ready to go back yet. I just hope for an amicable resolution and that both sides remember that the kids are what really matter here. Do you have any extra thoughts on the strike? Leave me a comment below!
Political Posts on Facebook
As the November elections near, my Facebook newsfeed has been filling up with political posts, pictures, links, you name it! I understand this is a big election, especially that the 2 main candidates are so different in their views of issues that most Americans are very passionate about. Although I have a very strong opinion about who I am and am not voting for, I choose to leave it off of my Facebook wall. I may “Like” something someone else posts or comment on a status update I really don’t agree with, but for the most part, I don’t initiate anything political on my personal Facebook page. Why do I choose to keep my political opinions to myself (for the most part)? Well, to be honest, I really don’t see the point in sharing my opinions and possibly causing upheaval between my Facebook friends and/or myself. I think about 2 months away from the election, most people are set on who they are going to vote for. If they are not set, a post on my wall, especially a simple status update or picture, will not convince anyone to vote for my candidate or vote against the other one. So, I have to wonder, what is the point of posting controversial political opinions on Facebook? Is it to convince your Facebook friends to vote for the same candidate you are voting for? Or is it to gain support from others with your same political views? Is it to have some engaging conversation on your Facebook page?
My political FB posts pet peeves: I absolutely hate when people call those of the other party names or judge someone for voting for the other person without having something intelligent or concrete evidence to back it up. I also hate parts of speeches being posted that are taken out of context to show a certain candidate saying something “wrong”. Today, my Facebook newsfeed showed multiple posts about Romney’s speech he made at a Fundraiser referencing the 47% of Americans who rely on government funding and will be voting for the current President. Comments were made that what Romney stated was hateful, especially his statement that his job is not to worry about the 47% (in context, he was speaking to the fact that he knows he will not be able to convince that 47% to give votes his way). When a Facebook friend posted this, I commented that it was taken out of context just as Obama’s “you didn’t build that” statement was a few months ago. By pointing this out, my intent was to stay neutral in my comment, but then someone else replied that it is not the same thing and what Romney said was actually worse. So is it okay for one party to twist a candidate’s words and take it out of context, but not okay for the other party to do so? I think it’s wrong on both sides. What do you think?
I’d love to know your thoughts! Leave me a comment below
|September 16, 2012||Filled under Crafts, Creative Joy, Kids & Babies, Mommy Joy, Savings Joy|
I learned this super inexpensive idea for balloon weights from my sister-in-law. Instead of buying balloon weights at the store, take a regular bottled water, wrap it in gift tissue, and tie ribbon around the top to hold the tissue in place. I like using 2 different colors and curling ribbon to give it an extra decorative touch. It was REALLY easy and I loved that I was able to use something that I had a lot of for the party anyway instead of having to spend the extra money at the store!
When having a themed party, I find it difficult to get carried away with all the decorations and favor bags, especially when they have themed favor bags/boxes out there that are already made for you. We needed 16 favor bags, so I had to make sure they were inexpensive, but also wanted the kids to like what was in them. Walmart has some great favor bag toys for affordable prices! I was able to make all 16 bags under for $20. Each bag had: sunglasses, “play-doh”, bubbles, and candy. Each girl’s bag had a princess wand, and each boy’s bag had a sticky frog. I was able to get 20 clear treat bags with balloons on them for less than $2. The princess wands wouldn’t fit in the bag, so I tied them on the outside of the bag with a twisty tie and curling ribbon. I did the same with the sunglasses for the boys bag. I think having an item on the outside of the bags actually got the kids more excited for them! I then added a label to make it more “Super Why!-ish” (regrettably, we ran out of color ink right before we were going to print the labels, so they were black & white, but I think they still turned out okay).
Here’s a close-up:
Do you have any other inexpensive party ideas? I would LOVE to hear them! Leave me a comment below