Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Christmas Tree 2012 - Kid friendly version

Here is out Christmas tree this year. Not as sparkly as last year, but beautiful enough to cheer the toddler in the house.

Some old, some new. Some hand made, some repurposed. Did you notice baby teethers, pieces of her mobile (she is too old for it now, so I cut it out and used the pieces on the tree), rattle toys and stuffed animals?

And the house all lit up, snowman standing by the door, the beautiful wreath on the door (I finally bought it after Christmas last year for $17.99 @ Michaels, 75% off its original price), nativity set under tree and some presents. I usually don't put out all presents until Christmas morning. People get too curious about them, you know, Hubs!!

And some closeup pics of all the ornaments...

 Here is the grand picture of the tree in all its glory.

That's our tree this year. I am linking this post at below link parties.

Holiday Home Link Party - Christmas Trees at Sarah's Thrifty Decor Chick.

House on the Way 

Learning 4 Keeps

I am waiting to see how everybody else decorated their Christmas Trees this year. Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Pregnancy Journal - Gift Idea

When my lovely friend was pregnant, I was browsing online to buy her a perfect pregnancy journal. She is very special for me and nothing looked good enough to give her. I found some on Etsy, can't find the exact one I liked, but a bit in the lines of this and this. It felt a little pricey, but the reason I couldn't get it was because I couldn't get it shipped by the time I needed it. But looking at these, I felt like I could make one. I searched my stash of craft supplies and found this old scrapbook, in untouched condition. I happened to buy this scrapbook of sorts some time ago (read that as few years ago). I don't remember what I thought I would do with it when I bought it, but it was on sale ($3.99, still had the price tag). Probably that's what convinced me to buy it. So I bought some card stock and stickers at Michaels and got to work. I don't have a before picture, but this is what I ended up with.

I didn't want to dictate what the mom to be should write in each and every page, but wanted to suggest what I thought were good to journal about, so I wrote them on tiny Post-It notes and stuck them on each page.

This last page shows how the original pages looked. Spray-on adhesive saved a lot of time for me to attach the card stock. This book came with a pouch at the end the will allow her to keep some extra photos and ultrasound pics.

I was very pleased with it. It costed me close to $30 in total and about 5 hours of time, but well worth it. And the mom to be loved it.

Linking this post at Stop Look and Link party at Lauren's All Things Homie and at Tater Tots and Jello's Weekend Wrap up Party

PS: I was looking for the original inspiration for this journal on etsy to link it on this post and I stumbled on this. Same prego lady picture I used. Kinda neat to find coincidences.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Baby Food Station

I had baby bottles, food pouches, snacks, wipes etc. etc. etc. all over the counter. It felt insane to see all the stuff on the counter. The visual clutter bothered me, so I tackled it. This is how it looked to start with.

Now it looks like this. All the clutter went in to the drawer.

Well organized.

These are the items I need on daily basis. Extras are stored in the cupboard underneath. Though some of the stuff like baby cups and plates are stored along with our stuff, this daily grabbing station is working well. If only I can keep it this way all the time.

By the way, for those of you that wonder why I have baby food for 20 month old, this is my sneaky way to include veggies and fruits into her diet. I can't get her to eat as much fruits n veggies as I would like, but these food punches are sweet and she happens to eat them well at daycare (not at home though). So I send them to be used as snack or part of main meals. The non sweet baby food gets used in pasta sauces. Another sneaky way to feed healthy.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

TOT-Friendly Christmas Ornaments

With our 20 month old daughter around, it didn't feel safe to keep my beloved ornaments on the tree, within her reach. Though I did not use all our glass ornaments, I wanted to use some of the most cherished ones like Baby's First Christmas, Baby hand and foot prints, Apples and Pears etc.

I have to say, she had been way better with the whole tree thing than I thought. Not touching the Nativity set or pulling stuff off the tree. If she wanted to take off an ornament, she is very careful with them, looking at it makes me smile and kiss her. Even though she tries to be careful, I am still concerned that she might accidentally drop a glass ornament on the stone floor on one side of the tree and hurt herself. We bought a set of tiny soft toy ornaments at Costco and also used some of her baby toys, but they did not fill the tree enough. So I wanted to make some DIY ornaments that are Toddler-Friendly. Shatter-proof in particular. I have searched web for some easy ideas as I can hardly find time to do anything else but the usual chores (I guess time length between my posts shows that, I hope). With some inspiration in mind I went to Michaels and bought some wooden animals, glittery pipe cleaners and some wood sticks, for less than $8. I came up with below.

As you can see, these are very simple. I mean, so simple that I don't have to explain the steps. Wooden Animals with ribbon hot glued for hanging, pipe cleaners shaped as Christmas trees, kindaa... with ribbon loops, wooden sticks with adhesive backing ribbon attached in front and hot glued ribbon for hanging and some paper ornaments that I made with scrapbook paper on hand (inspiration from google images). That's it. 22 simple, tree filling, kid proof ornaments.

Now the tree is filled with shatterproof ornaments at the bottom and my beloved glass ornaments on top. I don't find it as beautiful as it was last year, but the kid is enjoying it. I am not stressing over the Christmas decor as I am back to work and schedule has been tight after becoming working mom. I am trying to fit my interests into it, but it's been hard, really really hard. I am amazed at all of you out there that do so much more along with taking care of family and work. Looking up to you ladies!

Linking this post @ Tater Tots and Jello & Hi Sugarplum and Stop Look and Link party at All Things Homie