Sunday, December 7, 2014

Merry GRINCHmas!

We are moving right along in our Christmas countdown, today we watched my very favorite Christmas movie (Addie seems to really like it too!) We watched...the GRINCH!! This has been my favorite Christmas movie for as long as I can remember....back in the dinosaur ages before the Jim Carrey version was released. ;)
After naptime today we cuddled up with hot chocolate and popcorn and watched the movie together...but the real fun came after! We made these adorable cookies!

I found the idea on pinterest, and adapted them to fit out needs;
We used:
 1 box Gluten Free sugar cookie mix (Betty Crocker makes one that is phenomenal)
**I added green food coloring to the batter** and baked as directed
After they were done, I sprayed them with butter and Addie *carefully* dumped green sugar all over the kitchen..er..I mean..on the cookies. Then we added a peppermint/white chocolate kiss to each one!
 

Saturday, December 6, 2014

A crafty little gift from Addie!

Well, Christmas is in full swing here at the Ronk home! We have been busily baking, coloring pictures, and watching more Christmas movies than I care to admit. But todays activity is one I thought would be worth sharing! As I mentioned earlier, I want Addie to enjoy more about Christmas than the December 25th gift opening fest, so, I decided to have her make gifts to hand out..now, finding a gift idea that a 2 year old could make...that an adult would actually want was more difficult than I anticipated, I found lots of "toilet paper tube snowmen/reindeer/angels" and a plethora of other craft items. But, We settled on these adorable candy reindeer!! The original post was cute..but Addie decided HER reindeer needed bows, so...we made hair bows and bowties for her little reindeer!
 


 

Seriously, how cute are these!? They were super easy for her to make, adorable, and something any adult (with a sweet tooth) wouldn't mind getting. We used:
2 m&M filled candy canes (they were only $1 each!)
brown construction paper
wiggly eyes
red poms
bakers twine
ribbon

VOLA, a cute gift that she will be excited to give out!

*sorry to blow the surprise to the people on Addie's shopping list, but I just couldn't help posting these cuties!

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Today I'll wear...

I am taking a *quick* break from posting about Christmas....because I made something else I am pretty proud of today.

This project took all of 10 minutes, and cost me nothing because I already had the supplies! AND, it turned out just how I had hoped!



I used light pink scrapbook paper for the background and printed "Today, I'll wear..." on it I used scraps of scrapbook paper and washi tape to create the pennant banner at the top, popped it in a frame and its done! I will be hanging this in Addie's new room with some sort of cute knob under it!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Snowmen Magnets!

This morning Addie and I pulled day 2 from our countdown and the card said "Make snowmen light magnets" She happily helped me carry the supplies to the table and we set to work. These are extremely simple and she was really good at making the dots for the faces!
I cut out tiny top hats from felt, and left her choose ribbon for scarves (of course they ALL had to be pink) I then glued a neo magnet to the back and stuck them on the fridge.
I thought they were very fitting with the weather we are having! Also, tonight's book is "Snowmen at night" I told you our books would correspond to the activity for the day!!


 

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Bedtime Book Advent

Yesterday I shared our Christmas activity countdown...but we have another one that we have been doing for 3 years now as well. I wrapped 25 Christmas books (I found them on clearance after Christmas, at goodwill, and purchased quite a few must haves (like frosty, Rudolph, the Grinch, etc) on amazon or eBay. A couple of them I have replaced (this year we added a Fancy Nancy book because Addie loves her fun story's) I like to switch out one or two books each ear to keep it fresh and exciting.
I wrapped each book (and yes, the book we read in the evening DOES correspond with the activity we did that day (I am OCD like that) so on the day we watch the Grinch and make who-vile cookies, we will read the Grinch before bed. This book will be read in addition to whatever bedtime story picks out each evening. There is something utterly wonderful about a freshly bathed toddler all cozy in pajamas cuddled in my lap as we read a story before bed, and I plan to hang on to that as long as I possibly can. plus..she's FAR to busy to let me hold her during the day .
Here are our books...I wrapped them in craft paper and numbered them, according to what days I want to read them.
Tonight we will be reading our first book..snow bears Christmas countdown, and guess what? Snow bear does something everyday to get ready for Christmas. Imagine that!
 

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Only 26 days until Christmas!

26 more days until Christmas, Now...I do NOT think that Christmas celebrations should be confined to Christmas day, in fact...I am a firm believer in that celebrating Jesus should be a lifestyle rather than a holiday, but there is just something magical about Christmas, a time when everyone is to "spread holiday cheer" and everything twinkles in red and green. A time when children are encouraged to be innocent. I love everything about Christmas, I really enjoy shopping and choosing gifts for friends and family, wrapping, Christmas music, baking, Christmas lights and the peculiar way everything smells like cinnamon....yes, I am one of those obnoxious people snap chatting everyone I know from the Christmas isles in October because I am THRILLED to see the Christmas items out!
This year..I have been given the most amazing blessing...a toddler to share my love of Christmas with!! To my daughter, Christmas is just another day, at 2 she doesn't remember last year, but she's very aware that something special is going on. I want her to enjoy the whole Christmas season, and not just anticipate the December 25th present opening fest. I want her to know and understand why we celebrate Christmas. I want her memories from Christmas to be more than opening gifts. So, I put my craftiness together with some pinterest searching and I have come up with the perfect thing!!! A COUNTDOWN (I know, original right?!)  Let me tell you more (I know I am long winded today,there are pictures coming for visual learners!)
Here is what I made:

 I used a cheap poster frame from wal-mart and spray painted the "plastic insert glass substitute thingy" burgundy. Then I printed the chalkboard pockets HERE, put them together and glued them on my board. I was lucky enough to score the black tags at Groves Office Supply (a local store with scrapbooking and office supplies) to place in my pockets and I added bakers twine to each one of them to make it a tad more festive.
Each card has an activity on it that's related to Christmas, some are simple like "color a Christmas picture (I printed some freebies from pinterest), make a gingerbread house, bake cookies with mommy, go look at Christmas lights, have a picnic lunch by the Christmas tree, make Jesus a birthday cake, etc. This countdown...is not necessarily to show how many days until Christmas, but a fun way to create lasting memories with Addie this season...and the best part? I can re-use it next year!! I will be sure to share our fun projects with you!

Friday, November 28, 2014

CHRISTMAS MANTLE!

When we were house hunting I said I wanted a fire place...Jeremy (the voice of reason) said that was not going to be the deciding factor in a house purchase. But....we DID find a house we both really liked, and guess what?! IT HAS A FIRE PLACE. I scowered pinterest for a long time (before we even closed on said house) looking for the perfect Christmas arrangement. After a long time, I found the PERFECT one, a rustic elegant one...but the sign I wanted was $99.99...and I could swear I heard the checkbook snicker. So I knew if I wanted to create a similar look I would need to DIY it.
 I started with the source I always do, my Gram...she is the craftiest woman I know, and seems to have one of everything at her house.

 Luckily she has a shed full of old barn wood, so I went o get the perfect piece. My hubby cut it in half for me and then made it one big sign. I found a quote online that I loved, and then a silhouette of wise men. I just googled them and browsed until I found what I was looking for. I printed them out and cut out the letters with a utility knife.

After I made my stencil I painted it (its a little more smugy than the $99.99 version) but that's a price I am willing to pay. I then had hubby drill holes for lights and stuck them in to look like stars.

Anywho....HERE IT IS!! All done, It looks cute during the day,

but it comes alive at night!

 

Jingle Jingle!

I am obsessed with barn wood lately, I love the rustic look, its easy to make look awesome...and, its a major bonus that my Grammy has a rather large supply ;)
This project cost me a total of about $6!

I snagged a barn board last time I went to visit my gram (she happily gave it to me) and then I grabbed stencils and paint at Wal-Mart (I had the homespun fabric and rusty bells in my own stash)

Here is the fished project!! It looks awfully cute on our porch if I do say so myself!

 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Getting yourself a discounted Christmas!!

Ebates!!
Have you ever heard of it!? Well, let me fill you in. I really...really enjoy shopping, but part of the fun (at least for me) is getting a good deal..or better, getting something free. I LOVE when JCpenny sends me 10 off 10 coupons  (they don't usually make a dime off me with those). My favorite challenge is CHRISTMAS (witch is fast approaching) I shop all year, and I like to look for the best of deals. Last year I scored a FREE little people princess castle by signing up for an amazon card..used the cash back..and cancelled the card. I also take advantage of coupons during sales. This party works for me so well because my daughter is 2 and is mostly interested in the shiny paper and box...so whatever she gets..she's happy with. :) I also shop off seasons.,..so I scower the clearance racks AFTER Christmas for stocking stuffers, wrapping paper, gift tags, boxes, bags etc. It is October and my daughters Christmas is DONE, wrapped and ready to go. Along with my niece, nephew, sister, and  best friend. This leaves me much more relaxed and I can genuinely enjoy my favorite holiday. Anywho..I said all the hoopla to tell you...I FOUND EBATES.
So.
You make an account (here is the link)
 http://www.ebates.com/rf.do?referrerid=jN78sQQ6je6yuNez9jEMAA%3D%3D&eeid=26471

You use it kind of like a search engine..so if you are wanting to spend $50.00 at Gymboree..you go to ebates.com, type in Gymboree and a list will come up (AND THEY GIVE COUPON CODES...a win win for me!) you click on the store you want....and then shop as normal. BUT!!! ebates gives you a percentage back for purchasing through them! Typically its small..no more than 5% BUT it can add up if you are an online shopper like myself and they REALLY do send you a paper, cashable check!

Try it out!!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

A new house for Addie!

As my husband and I draw closer to the closing date on our first home, I decided Addie should have a new house too!! She has been playing with my little tikes house lately (I say mine..because I got it when I was about 3 years old!
 
There I am, proud as a peacock of my brand new house! Anyway..after about 22 years, the house is a little dated, and in need of a "spruce" SOO, one day while on Pinterest, I stumbled upon a house that had been painted! I marveled at the thought, and endless possibilities, but then put it on the "someday" list. Well, someday came this week, I chose colors (to match the house we are purchasing) and set to work. I used krylon spray paint (it says it bonds to plastic) It was pretty simple! Here is the finished project!!
 
 
I have to say, I am pretty happy with it! Its cute, more attractive, and will look adorable sitting in our new yard!
 
**I did notice the paint chips when scratched..so I plan to look for a sealer or something for it.
 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Letter Learning

Addie has been very into letters and "reading" lately. She often grabs a book and pretends to read, or say letters she knows the names of, so, I figured if she has an interest... I am happy to fuel it! So, we started some "pre-school" this is merrily a 20 minute time (even that is a stretch for such a busy bee) where we sit at the table and do letter, number or shape flash cards, read a book, sing a silly song, and do a coloring page or craft. This week we did flashcards for letters A-E, and introduced number 1, and triangles. I am happy to report that after 3 days of "Pee-Skooo" she can identify the letter A, and will happily repeat the letters we have introduced thus far. What a smart little cookie!


 
Running a glue stick was her favorite new thing this week I would say...but she is always so proud of her big girl papers to show Daddy when he comes home from work. I was impressed with the amount of stuff on Pinterest for "2 year old pre-school" I am looking forward to fall and winter theme activities! Next week we will focus on the letter B.
 

Monday, September 15, 2014

A menu plan!!

A menu board! I am pretty excited about this project! It was very simple (and less than $10!) I started with a trip to a local craft store for kitchen themed paper/stickers/embellishments. I wanted something primitive to fit my d├ęcor, and was thrilled with the teal barn wood and jars! I made my display, added the letter stickers for the days of the week and then slipped it in a frame. The glass makes a perfect dry-erase board! This way I can use it over and over, and I can add meals easily, and erase them as I use them!! Even my hubby will appreciate this one..as by Wednesday I can usually not remember what I had that chicken for...

**I did make a menu board before, but it was a magnetic one, with slips of paper on a little slot with each meal on it...I felt that it got old writing out new recipes as I wanted to try them...only to throw them out because the recipe was a flop! I feel that this will be new an improved.
 

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Operation Easter Basket

I tend to over think things, I’ll admit that. With Easter, I know that it isn’t important what she gets in her Easter basket. I know that the most important thing is that she understands that reason that we celebrate Easter. At the same time, there is a part of me that lives for these things. We certainly won’t go overboard for Easter, I tend to use holidays like this to slip in some necessities that we will soon need. Spring clothes, new sandals, a summer hat, swimsuit...all Easter gifts! This works well because I would generally buy her these items anyway, and she will certainly not need them before Easter. I tend to shop all year for all holidays, so when I see small things on clearance or for good prices I grab them up often for Easter baskets, stocking stuffers, etc. I buy as I see things rather than "Easter basket shopping" all at once. Here is what I ended up with!


I will tell you, I am not a fan of all the little junk toys in the Easter isles...or a ton of candy. So, I decided on the following; 
-Books (Because we read at least 3-4 each day)
-Little people princess set, to go with her castle!
-A new water bottle
-Two chunky necklaces (made by ME!! at Belly Buttons & Baby Bottoms)
-Bows to match her new clothes and chunky necklaces (made by Darling Diva Bow-tique)
-Twistables crayons
-Growing wash cloth (because we LOVE bath time)

Then for snacks...of course, a chocolate bunny (this will be rationed by mommy), mini m&m's, Mini Nilla Wafers and Gerber yogurt melts!

Here is the finished product!! 

**I also have plans to make her a pair of my bling flip flops as well, they will be cute with all her spring clothes!** Also available at Belly Buttons & Baby Bottoms I made her a pair last year and they were a huge hit...shes a shoe girl!! 

Happy Easter!! 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Princess, with a storage Plan!

Well, we are mid February..so I am beginning to Christmas shop! Basically this early I am just starting to save money, and compile a list of what I want to look for when I am shopping. My daughter will be 2 1/2 at Christmas this year, and she LOVES to put on anything....and I mean ANYTHING pretty. (She is not ashamed to grab mommy's pretty (clean) undies as a necklace) ...I of course quickly take them away and give her something slightly more appropriate in case the mail man brings us a package. Again. Anywho..because of this obsession of hers, I decided dress up clothes would be a perfect Christmas gift for her!! I always check clearance racks, and after Halloween I plan to grab a couple clearance princess dresses. But, then comes the STORAGE hurdle. I found a million ideas on Pinterest where you transform an old dresser into a gorgeous standing "closet" but...we are already crowded in with all her toys, so I needed something slightly..less. SO!!!! I went to Wal-Mart, and grabbed myself a good 'ol tote. Now I know, This is hardly fit for a princess. So I scowered the store for something to decorate it. I settled on wall decals! They are cute...and were on clearance! TAA DAA!!! A dress up storage tote fir for a Princess!
Here it is!!
Yes...I did decorate the bottom of the tote, and you will only see it when its empty...but, that castle was to cute not to use! And...I am sure it will spend lots of time empty...with all the dress up clothes strewn around my living room!!