My top 10 favorite New Year ideas

10 Fabulous New Years Party Ideas

So I am a little behind but I had to do a roundup of my favorite New Year ideas to help you ring in a New Year. What I love about my top 10 is they are all affordable, with Christmas just ending it’s safe to say we are all broke right now so getting crafty for New Years might just be a must. I hope you all have a fabulous and safe New Years!

Glitter Bottles for New Years1. DIY Sparkly Bottles by Evite

DIY-sparkle-lanterns-2. DIY Glitter Lanterns by chickabug

20153. Dress up your treats with our toppers at our Love It Soirees Etsy Shop

Glitter New Years ideas4. Fill Clear Balloons with confetti or Glitter

Glitter Cups5. DIY glitter cups by Nest of Posies

gold-mason-jar-accents6. DIY Glitter mason jars I love the gold spray painted coffee beans Source

tumblr_ldgl65Wxb41qattyro1_5007. Wrap star glitter garland around champagne glasses Source

DIY-Fringe-Garland-Tutorial8. Gold Glitter Garland backdrop by Classy Clutter

2-Star-Crown9. Star garland to glam up your hair by Brit

new-years-party-hats-coloring-page10. Keep those kids busy because you know they will stay awake with these free coloring pages by Squishy cute designs

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Grinchmas Christmas Party

Grinchmas Christmas Party

This year we threw a Grinchmas Christmas party. I wasn’t able to go all out with this party like I do with most my party’s which of course the day of the party I wish I planned more but working in retail during the holidays is not fun! The party still came out cute and everyone had a great time, here are some shots from the party.Grinch Christmas Party Grinch Christmas Party It’s not Christmas according to my husband until I make Oreo Balls, this recipe is the easiest thing ever and everyone loves them. Literally 3 ingredients:

1pkg. cream cheese softened

1pkg. Oreo’s ( do not get double stuffed)

white melting chocolate

blend cream cheese and Oreos, form teaspoon size balls. I freeze them for about 30 minutes and then dip in white chocolate, so easy

Grinch Christmas Party Grinch Christmas party For my backdrop to add more color to my table I used tissue paper I found at Wal-Mart. I used double sided tape and in a minute I was done.  It looks better in day light so I had to take a picture the day after the party, clean up time!Grinch Christmas party  Grinch Christmas Party How pretty is this peppermint mocha cake made by Lil’ Miss Flossy for my local friends they specialize in catering. I have an obsession with cake stands and having fun with them,  so when I came across this gift box at Hobby Lobby in these fun colors I had to snag it up.

Grinch Christmas PartyI love these jewelry stands I bought a JoAnn’s a few years ago, I use them for almost every party I just change the ribbon up to go with whatever theme I am doing.

Grinch craftFor the kids Tina found this heart craft on oriental trading for Grinch’s growing heart.

Christmas decor, Christmas mantel, Grinch Christmas party

Calendar frame DIY gift

calendar frame

Last Christmas, my sister gave me this awesome calendar frame. It is her DIY that I am going to share with you.

 

What you need:

Glass Picture frame of your size

Burlap

permeant markers and acrylic paint, paintbrushes

ruler

Smooth your burlap out and tape it down tight on a surface like a table. This is important that it is tight so your lines are straight. Lay your frame on the burlap so you know where your lines should be. Lay your ruler down on the burlap and make sure it is straight. Use a sharpie to draw the calendar lines. After your lines and your box at the top are done you can write the days of the week. She made my initial at the top and then painted it in with acrylic paint. Let completely dry and then glue the burlap to the back of the frame or staple the burlap down to the outside of the backing.   This will depend on the frame you got. Cut the burlap to fit.

* Make sure your burlap is tight or your lines will become wavy!

calendar frame

Now you can use dry erase markers or wet-erase on the glass. This makes a great gift. Wal-Mart and craft stores always have frames at great prices.

Check out our burlap clothespin frame too.

Snowman painted spools and peg dolls

DIY paint a snowmanI love Snowmen, Olaf and Chilli included. Not as much as I love bunnies, but a close second. Snowmen are a huge part of my Winter decor. Last year I had a lot of blank spools left over from a Lalaloopsy party that we did. I decided to paint them and make them into a snowman. Sierra agreed that they would turn out good.
Snowmen spools

After I did that I realized I had some blank peg people that I was suppose to paint into princesses awhile back and never found the time to do. So I painted them into a snowman too.

 

snowman peg

What you will need is:

– any kind of wood piece including spools, pegs, blocks, door hanger etc.

– white, black, pink and orange acrylic paint (can use paint pens for black and orange)

– different size paint brushes including a small tip one for detail

I bought my spools and pegs from craft stores. Paint the wood piece all white and let dry completely. You may have to use a couple coats. After your white base is totally dry you are ready for details.

I paint the eyes then the mouth and buttons with black. I let that dry and then dip a q-tip in pink and dab their cheeks. I blot it with my finger to make it faded and not as bright. Lastly, I paint on the carrot nose. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Mine is swiggly carrot noses.

I’ve seen on Pinterest where some one painted wood blocks into snowmen and made ornaments out of them. The spools can be turned into ornaments by running ribbon looped thru the top to the bottom and tie a large knot on the bottom. The loop needs to be big enough  to hang from the top on the tree. ornament

 

Make sure the knot is big enough that it will not slide back through the hole. I used a small paintbrush to push the ribbon through to the bottom.

ornament

It is ready to hang on the tree and these can be given as gifts or sold at craft fairs.

The peg snowman can be made into ornament too but you have to screw a screw eye hook at the top. You can find those at craft stores, Wal-Mart, Amazon and hardware stores. If you buy a pack of those, start looking thru the house for little toys you can turn into ornaments. Most small plastic toys can be turned into an ornament.

This Video shows you how to turn toys into ornaments.

Gifts in a Jar DIY

While Sierra and I were out and about “Targeting,” (Target Shopping- It’s a sport. LOL) we came across some cute jars filled with candy for $3.99. Sierra decided to get them and spruce them up for her daughter’s jazzy jar entry. As soon as I saw them, I knew I could make them and for a better price.

Target candy jars

See I have a Starbucks addiction, so I go thru a lot of Starbucks bottles. I do recycle them and usually have some on hand at any given time. So you will need a recycled Starbucks bottle, candy of your choice, cute ribbon. The good thing about Starbucks bottles, is they are shaped similar to old milk bottles and they are easy to spruce up. Hot soapy water should get the label off. I used “goof off” to get the residue off after the label came off. Could use goo gone or any other adhesive remover. Give them a good wash or run thru the dishwasher. I did paint my lids but you could leave as is and tape a label on the top.

candy at Target

Now fill with your favorite candy, or pretzels and tie a ribbon.

Starbucks recycled gift bottle

Christmas inspired with peppermints and chalkboard label. $1 for the candy

snowman bottle

Snowman inspired with buttons hot glued and felt scarf filled with white chocolate pretzels. $1 for pretzels. Already had spare buttons and felt.

Wild Bird Feed gift bottle

Wild bird feed. Taped a label on it and hot glued jute string around the top. Free cause I had everything on hand. candy

Here is sierra’s after she jazzed hers up. You may also like our jazzy jar post,  it may give you ideas for  gifts in a jar too.

DIY Chocolate Stir Sticks

hot cocoa on a stick

With Christmas just around the corner, I’ve been looking for inspiration for things to make for gifts. These could be given to friends, teachers, coworkers and anyone who loves hot cocoa. I made these at Valentine’s day last year.

Chocolate on a stickCame across these at Target and I wanted to share an easy DIY for them too. They cost $1.00 a piece but can be duped for much less.
What you will need:
Double boiler or glass bowl to go over top of pot of simmering water
Heart shaped chocolate mold, ice trays work great. I got a heart shaped one from IKEA for $1
Stir sticks or a bag of wooden craft sticks, can even use sucker sticks
Ziploc baggie or piping bag. 
Cellophane wrap or treat bag
b
 
Option 1:
Ingredients:
8 oz. chocolate bittersweet, semisweet, milk, and white chocolate all work (I used Andes Mints baking chocolate) 
3 Tbsp cocoa, sifted
6-8 Tbsp confectioner’s sugar, sifted, depending on how much sweeter you’d like your hot chocolate
pinch of salt
Giver’s blog has the best directions on making hot chocolate on a stick.
Option 2:
Just use baking chocolate and heat in microwave. Fill mold with ziploc bag or piping bag. Always tap the chocolate in the mold on a surface to release air bubble. Stick the stick straight up after the chocolate has hardened a little. 

hot cocoa on a stickCan

Jazzy Jars for School Fundraisers

jazzy jars

Each year our daughters’ elementary school hosts a fall carnival for PTA. The carnival is broken up into booths inside classrooms throughout the school. The children buy tickets to pay  for the booth games and buy jazzy jars. What are jazzy jars you ask? They are jars, baskets or other clear containers that are decorated and have items inside. The items can be toys, candy or other goodies. Last year my child did not get a jazzy jar because there clearly weren’t enough turned in. Sad day. Lots of unhappy or crying children after they waited to get one and then they run out before their turn. I decided to make as many as I possibly could and get other parents involved this year in hopes most children would get one.

So the planning process was throughout the year, picking up clearance items and saving treat bag leftovers from our parties that “Love it” has done. Recycled my Starbucks bottles and any jars I had. This year I turned in 32! That’s right, I am a SUPER Mom. Not only did my child turn in the most in the school but her class won an ice cream party. So T Bear got to jump line for a jazzy jar as her prize. The best news of all: the school had over 700 jars turned in this year. They actually had some leftover at the end= no crying children.

My jars were mild in comparison. Some jazzy jars were really out there and crazy. I made a dog treat one filled with dog bones and treats and painted dog prints on it. I made several pirate ones, because we did 3 pirate parties within a year. Sierra did a Doc McStuffins one for her daughter’s class. So here’s some of the cute ones I turned in:

cookie monster jarCookie Monster filled with assortment of cookies

snowman bottle

Snowman filled with white chocolate pretzels

Frozen jarFrozen (huge hit). I hand painted snowflakes all over the jar.

all girl jarAll things girl. I hot glued a tulle poof to the top. Tulle poof DIY .You will just want to make it big enough to cover your jar lid.

Wild Bird Feed bottleWild bird feed

Lego jarlego kitLego sets. A pencil wouldn’t fit inside, so I taped them to the side.

Super Hero setSuper hero

Welcome winter basketWelcome winter basket filled with chicken noodle soup can, hot cocoa packet, tea packet, candle, fruit snacks and chapstick

I’ve already started planning for next year’s carnival. I’ll have to turn in even more next year because the “littlest” will be at that school next year too.

You may also want to check out my post on DIY gifts in a jar.

Who St. Nicholas was, and why he is the real Santa

St. Nick Day

Happy St. Nicholas day! Being raised Catholic my family has always celebrated St. Nicholas Day. On the eve of Dec 5th we always put out our shoes by the door in hopes good old St. Nicholas would stop by our house to fill our shoes with treats if we deserved them.  Moving to the south I discovered a lot of  people don’t know who St. Nicholas is and why we celebrate who he was and most importantly what he stood for: his faith in Jesus Christ.  Santa Clause is jolly and great and all but to me he is so commercialized now that there is no religion in Santa which is crazy because they originated Santa from St. Nicholas.  Some quick information who St. Nicholas was: He dedicated his life to serving God and gave everything he had to help the poor and sick. St. Nicholas was one of the many bishops and priest imprisoned during this time because of their Christianity faith Under the Roman Emperor Diocletian.  St. Nicholas became known throughout the land for his generosity to those in need, and his love for children.

C Everard 5.tif

There are many stories of St. Nicholas good dead’s but the most common is the story about a poor man with three daughters. In those days a young woman’s father had to offer prospective husbands something of value—a dowry. The larger the dowry, the better the chance that a young woman would find a good husband. Without a dowry, a woman was unlikely to marry. This poor man’s daughters, without dowries, were therefore destined to be sold into slavery. Mysteriously, on three different occasions, a bag of gold appeared in their home-providing the needed dowries. The bags of gold, tossed through an open window, are said to have landed in stockings or shoes left before the fire to dry. This led to the custom of children hanging stockings or putting out shoes, eagerly awaiting gifts from Saint Nicholas. Sometimes the story is told with gold balls instead of bags of gold. That is why three gold balls, sometimes represented as oranges, are one of the symbols for St. Nicholas. And so St. Nicholas is a gift-giver (Source) st-nick

I hear many stories about parents not using the whole Santa as a part of Christmas because they believe it is taking the true meaning of Christmas away, which I agree with our commercialized Santa that we are allowed to use in school and businesses. But we can choose to teach our children about a man who followed Jesus’s words by giving to others in need and staying true to our beliefs. I now have a family of my own that I get to continue the tradition with, I even fill my husbands shoes with treats.

4 Layer Chocolate pie

chocolate 4

Each year my aunt makes the tastiest 4 Layer Chocolate Pie for Thanksgiving. This year I asked what to bring and she said I could make the pie. At first I was skeptical because I really do not cook or bake, but it really is easy and fast to make. No cooking required and takes about 25 mins. Take this to your next party or holiday event and it is sure to be eaten. Allergic to nuts? eliminate them and make it a 3-layer.

Here’s how:

 

Winter Children crafts

Winter crafts

Each year at Thanksgiving we like to entertain our crew of children with some crafts for the holidays while food is being prepared. There are 4 kids, 2 girls and 2 boys ages 7 and 4. (That’s a whole other post on how I could never be pregnant by myself. LOL) This year I talked to my sister about what we wanted to do and sent her some ideas and then went off to the craft stores. I picked up a Gingerbread felt kit at Joann’s that was on sale and makes more than enough for our kids. I also got a pack of snowflake foam stickers there for a $1. I grabbed some foam sheets and magnets that I already had, glue gun and other craft stuff and headed to my hometown.

gingerbread and winter frame

I took a 4X6 picture as a template and placed in the middle of the foam sheet and traced it out. Cut out the middle and let the kids decorate their picture frame. When all was done, I placed the magnet on the back and we have a winter wonderland frame to go on the fridge.

Next I let the kiddos decorate their Gingerbread men and women. This is were the glue gun came in because some of the felt pieces were not stickers. It says you could use Elmer’s glue, but I just used the glue gun and had the kids tell me where they wanted the pieces. Placed a magnet on the back and up on the fridge they went.

gingerbread and winter frame

My sis picked up some clear ornaments, a small funnel, christmas ribbon, hot cocoa, mini marshmallows,  sprinkles, chocolate chips, white chocolate chips and mini M&M’s at Wal-Mart.

Supplies for Hot Cocoa ornament

She let the kids funnel or spoon in their layers of hot cocoa and toppings into their ornaments. We only did one pack of hot cocoa but the ornament could hold 2 and toppings. Tied a ribbon of their choice to the top and the kids have a hot cocoa ornament for the tree.

Hot cocoa oranments

Lastly I had Sierra’s two kids over after Thanksgiving to do crafts. I had them do the gingerbread magnet and all the girls make a snowman card. I took blue cardstock in half and cut it. I painted the palm of their hand with white paint and pressed it down on the cardstock and then let them use markers to draw their snowman a face, arms, buttons, hat and scarf and lots of snowflakes. This also works on ornaments.

snowman card

snowman card