Sunday, October 23, 2016

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Strawberry Kiss Shopkins Costume and Trick-or-Treat Bag

After much deliberation this year, Rebecca finally decided she wanted to dress up as a Shopkin for Halloween, and she fell in love with this Shopkin Strawberry Kiss Costume from Oriental Trading Company.  (Disclaimer:  Oriental Trading Company and Fairfield World provided me with free products to try and Fairfield World compensated me for this post.  However all thoughts, ideas, opinions, and enthusiasm are 100% my own.)  Besides Strawberry Kiss they also offer a Cupcake Queen costume.   Oriental Trading Company is definitely Halloween Headquarters with LOTS of other fun Halloween Costumes to choose from.

The Strawberry Kiss costume is wonderful on it's own, but we added a green T-shirt and red polka dot leggings underneath for added warm and comfort for wearing to school.  We also needed to make a few of our own accessories, including this super early Trick-or-Treating bag.  The sparkly red polka dots in the dress immediately made me think of the red metallic Oly-Fun­™ and the bag only took about 20 minutes to make.  I've sided the bag to hold plenty of Halloween goodies to make your child happy...but small enough to fill up without TOO much trick-or-treating.  You can size up or down according to your needs.

Here's what you'll need to make your own:
1/2 Yard Metallic Red Oly-Fun ™
Scissors or Rotary Cutter and ruler
Sewing machine, thread, and related supplies.
Scraps of white, yellow and green oly-fun for the embellishiments (or purchase an Oly-Fun Variety Pack.)
Low-Temp Glue Gun and Glue
Double sided tape OR pins


Sunday, October 16, 2016

14 Halloween DIY Costumes You'll Love and the Weekly Block Party Link-Up

Little House on the Prairie CostumeRacoon Mask and Costume | Minecraft Trunk-or-TreatWhere's Waldo Family Costume | Last Minute Ninja Costumes |  Easy DIY Star Wars Family Costumes | Bird CostumeDIY My Little Pony Fluttershy Equestria Costume | Easy Hawkeye Costume | Bob Ross Tree and Squirrel Costume  |  Baby Kristoff Costume (Frozen)Sharknado Costume | Lego Man Costume | DIY Olaf Costume

Halloween is right around the corner, so we've got some fun Halloween costume inspiration for you.  If your kids are anything like mine, Halloween costume plans is just about all they can talk or think about...and changing those plans.  

It's time for another Block Party hosted by Making the World Cuter | Rae Gun Ramblings Keeping It Simple Crafts | Pieces By Polly!  Be sure to check out all of our blogs, because we've been up to some fun things lately.
Polly here from Pieces by Polly.

Since the last time I hosted, you could say I've been living in a fantasy world (with the exception of the astronaut costume.)  Here's a peek at what I've been doing since the last time I hosted.
I'm also hosting an I-Spy Square Swap this week.  There are still a few spots open if anyone is interested.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Rey Costume in 10 Minutes - Last Minute Star Wars Costume

This Rey Skywalker costume is SO easy to put together.  You'll be done in less than 10 minutes with some Oly-Fun™ craft material and a few wardrobe staples, and NO sewing involved.  With Star Wars The Force Awakens so popular this year, this costume is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.  And a big thanks to Fairfield World for supporting my blog by providing me with materials and compensating me for this post.  All thoughts, ideas, opinions, and enthusiasm are all my own.  This post contains affiliate links.

Need a Jedi costume to go with your Rey Costume?  You can find my instructions for how to make one in under 30 minutes on the Fairfield site here.  Jedi Costume with Oly-Fun in Under 30 minutes.

Now accessories often make-or-break the costume, so you'll want to check out how to make Rey's staff here.  (It will take a bit more than 10 minutes because you'll need to let the spray paint dry.)
Here's what you'll need to make a child's Rey Costume:

Sunday, October 9, 2016

10+ Must Make Party Food Recipes and the Weekly Block Party

With so many holidays right around the corner I think we're all looking for more party foods to add to our rotations.  Marissa has put together a great roundup for us...

Party food is my absolute favorite type of food. I love dips, and chips, and wings and bite sizes tastes of all sorts.
So many delicious Party food recipes. Appetizers, chips and dip, wings meatballs and more
Whether you're gathered around the TV for your favorite game or show, celebrating a special day with the family or just want the yummiest food on Earth here are over 10 must make party food recipes.
  1. 3 Ingredient Sausage Queso Dip
  2. Cheesy Meat and Potato Croquettes
  3. Capresse Chicken with Avocados
  4. Foccacia Bread
  5. Roasted Red Pepper Dip
  6. Loaded Fajita Dip
  7. Sweet Potato and Bacon Skewers
  8. Mini Taco Pies
  9. Southern Meatballs
  10. Honey Fig and Brie Phyllo Cups
  11. Spicy Butter Chicken Wings
  12. Baked Parmesan Ravioli
  13. Buffalo Chicken Pinwheels
  14. Bacon Wrapped Jalaleno Poppers
  15. Mexican Queso Dip
  16. Cheesy Wonton Bites
Rae Gun guest posting picture 
 Marissa from Rae Gun Ramblings here today as this week’s host. Here are a few of my favorite projects since I hosted last time!
Great tips recipes and craft projects
Crock Pot Beef Onion Wine Sauce Pasta | Crock Pot Beef Onion Wine Sauce Pasta |Crock Pot Beef Onion Wine Sauce Pasta

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Book Review and Illustrations Peek: Illustrated Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

The new Illustrated Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets came out today!  And oh, my!  The pictures are as amazing as the first book.  (Note:  This is not a sponsored post, but it does contain affiliate links to help support my blog.)

 I've been waiting for this to come out...pretty much ever since I saw how gorgeous the Illustrated Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone was.  Jim Kay does an impeccable job.  I love having another "official" version for imagery besides just the movies.  (Because I am a hardcore book fan over movies in general, and especially in the case of Harry  Potter.)  So when my copy turned up in my mailbox today, I did want any normal person would do...and flipped through it to admire the art, and then took some pictures so I could share them with you.  (And I might have bad a bit too much fun finding just the right fabric to go behind them.

I think this is my personal favorite...Harry falling into Tom Riddle's diary...

Amazing quidditch illustration...because we all wish we could play quidditch.

Not surprisingly, there are plenty of spiders throughout the book... (Reversible Spider Web Quilt tutorial here.)

I've always had a special place in my heart for Professor Sprout...after all...she's a bit pudgy and messy like me.  When you think about it, Chamber of Secrets is where she really shines with her raising the mandrakes that save everyone.  The greenhouse is featured inside the front and back covers.

And of course there had to be a big picture of Prof. Lockhart...who can always remind us that not every Ravenclaw is smart.

I was definitely hoping for a phoenix picture, and was NOT disappointed.  Love all the details about them.

And how cool is this skelegro?!?

I thought it was SO COOL that the whole Heir of Slytherin chapter is in black with white text.  Very neat effect.

And last but not least...I totally love this chapter header with Errol delivering Ron's howler...who I know revives and is okay later...but I just couldn't help but thinking it illustrates some of the mishaps that sometimes befall the owls delivering the "Late" Personalized Hogwarts Letters available in my shop.

There are of course SO many more...Ron belching slugs, Lockhart's pixies, The Chamber of Secrets, Moaning Murtle...and so many more.  Even the smaller illustrations are delightful.

My ONLY disappointment with the illustrated Chamber of Secrets is that I was really hoping for a full page illustration of Ginny.  (After all, Ginny was Rebecca's favorite character and even now that Rebecca prefers Hermione, Ginny is close behind at second favorite.)  However, Ginny doesn't show up in any of the illustrations that I could see.  I guess, the illustrator didn't want to give away any clues as to how important she is?  Hopefully, she'll get her chance to shine in one of the future books.

I promise than any Harry Potter fan would LOVE getting either of these books for Christmas, birthdays or other special occasions.  They are especially great for children interested in Harry Potter who find the length of them daunting.  The pictures are a wonderful reward for making it through another page or two.  But even people who have reread the books many times will love to see the characters come to live in Jim Kay's art.

The Illustrated Harry Potter and the Scorcer's Stone can be purchased here, and the Illustrated Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets can be purchased here.  (And by purchasing through these links a tiny percentage goes to support by blog...and pay for my kids music and dance lessons.)

Now it's going to be a LONG wait for the next 5 illustrated books.  I assume that an Illustrated Prisoner of Azkaban is in the works now.  Here are a few illustrations I'm predicting (hoping!) will be no particular order:

  • Monster Book of Monsters
  • Full Page Remus Lupin (I'm not particularly a fan of the way they made him look in the movie, so I'm so anxious for Jim Kay's take on him.)
  • A Jim Kay version of the Maurader's Map
  • Some amazing patronus art
  • Students battling the bogart...maybe Snape in Neville's grandmother's hat and dress?
  • Prof. Tralawney
  • Azkaban Island
  • Dementors
  • Dudley bigger than ever...he's been in every book so far.
  • The night bus
  • An infographic about werewolves, dementors, and/or animagi
  • I'd love a Ginny Weasley picture...but since she didn't make it into book 2, I'm afraid we might have to wait until book 4 for a peak of her.

What illustrations are you hoping for?

See these links for more details about other Harry Potter themed crafts we've done...and be sure to check back because I'll be adding more as I get them written up.

Gryffindor Deathly Hallows Quilt


 Hogwarts Crest Quilt

Slytherin Quilt - Green and Silver
 Slytherin Quilt

 Giant Monster Book of Monster Cushion (No Sew)

Golden Snitch Birthday Cake
 Slytherin Quilt


Granger-Lovegood 2016 Election Shirts 

Potter - Weasley 2016 Election Shirts 


Lumos and Nox Quilt

Harry Potter Party Overview


 Hedwig Necklace

Accio Book Tote Tutorial - Freezer Paper Stencil 
Harry Potter Shirt - Freezer Paper Stencil

Easy Harry Potter Wands 

Printable Hogwarts Library Book Plates

Printable Harry Potter Valentines

Easy Harry Potter (Hogwarts) House Scarves

Golden Snitch Necklace

Golden Snitch Cupcakes

Ron Weasley "I'm a Keeper" Shirt - Freezer Paper Stencil

Ginny Weasley's Golden Snitch Skirt
DIY Quidditch Association Shirt - Freezer Paper Stencil (Boy Version)
DIY Quidditch Association Shirt - Freezer Paper Stencil (Girl Version)
Harry Potter Wizard Robe in 15 Minutes from a T-shirt

Harry Potter Family Themed Costumes

Harry Potter Inspired Charm Ornaments

Harry Potter Printable Spell Books

Harry Potter Printable Dementor Themed Chocolate Bar Wrappers Books

The Hermione Skirt
Dementor's Kiss-Away Free Printable Party Favor or Valentine

DIY Hogwarts Robe for 18-inch Doll

Hermione in the Library - CraftingCon Post

Harry Potter Potions Ornaments

 Harry Potter Robes with Oly*Fun

 The Wand Skirt

 Always Doe Pillow

Deathly Hallows Pillow
 Deathly Hallows Pillow

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