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Bottle Cap Magnet/Message Center Craft June 12, 2013

craftredomessageCENTER

We had many requests for a craft class regarding a recycled bottle cap craft. The class was held this past January and we crafted up a storm. We incorporated a message board created from the backside of a cookie sheet.

You’ll find many uses for the bottle cap craft – a surprise birthday greeting to send through the mail, a quick and easy ‘Thank You’ to craft up , holiday themed magnets, necklaces, etc. This is a great craft for kiddos too.

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You will need:

  • Bottle caps
  • Scrapbook papers
  • Scrapbook embellishments (glitter, buttons, stickers, brads, glitter glue, rhinestones, pearls, themed confetti, plastic letters, etc)
  • Magazines, discarded books, cards
  • Ribbon
  • Mod Podge
  • 1” circle hole punch or a circle template
  • Scissors
  • Exacto knife
  • Cutting board
  • Ruler
  • Tapes (optional – regular and double sided sticky tape)
  • Cookie sheet
  • 2 part epoxy
  • Button magnets
  • Hot glue gun and/or heavy duty adhesive (our favorite is E-6000)
  • Drill

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Directions For Bottle Cap:

  1. With your 1” circle punch (or circle template) cut out paper for the background of your design. Adhere paper onto the inside of the bottle cap with either Mod Podge or double sided sticky tape. Helpful Tip: Don’t worry too much about taking out the little plastic disc that’s on the inside of the bottle cap. You CAN get it out using a knife, pliers or the heat of a hair dryer. We found that the end product really didn’t change much with the disc in or taken out – but you can give yourself a pretty bad wound trying to get that outta there. So, leave it in.
  2. Decorate the inside. Get creative – use words from magazines, pictures from children’s books, special notes and sentiments, a scrap of fabric that brings back a memory. They’re actually quite fun to decorate. Results are quick. It’s like a miniature canvas, a diorama. That’s probably why kids enjoy creating these.
  3. Coat the decorated inside with a layer of Mod Podge. Let dry over night.
  4. To apply the 2-part epoxy check out our post ‘A Spoon Full Of Sweet Sentiments’ dated July 19, 2012: http://craftredo.com/2012/07/19/a-spoon-full-of-sweet-sentiments/ You’ll find step-by-step instructions plus a supply list.
  5. After epoxy has fully dried, attach button magnet onto the back of the bottle cap with hot glue or E-6000.

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Directions For Message Board:

  1. Drill 2 holes on the rim of the cookie sheet. We used 1/4” bit. Be sure to take a nail and make an indent before you start drilling. This is called a ‘tap’, it will help your drill not go so ‘squirrely’ when you’re drilling. Remove sharp edges with a file, wire brush attachment on your drill, or grinder.
  2. Determine your design for your board. We used scrap book paper in various colors/patterns. The sky’s the limit. You may want a simple single color pallet, or go crazy with multiple colors and patterns. Decide if you want a ribbon to help make the transition between paper pieces and choose that if applicable. You may just want to transition with fancy pattern scissors or even cut a scallop pattern freehand.
  3. Once you have chosen your materials for your board it is time to cut the paper to fit your cookie sheet. We experimented with many methods of cutting the paper. We found using a cutting mat, straight edge, and exacto blade to be the easiest way for us, but scissors worked fine as well. If you are using multiple pieces, let them overlap a bit. You can hide the transition with a ribbon and it is easier than trying to get them to line up exactly.
  4. After your pieces are cut to size you may want to hold them together with a bit of tape on the back side. Then you are ready to adhere the paper to your cookie sheet.  Apply a thin layer of Mod Podge to your cookie sheet. Place your paper on your sheet and make sure it is lined up the way you want it. Rub gently with your hands to remove any bubbles. If you get a stubborn bubble, just let it be. It may settle after the Mod Podge dries. Adhere any ribbon you are using with Mod Podge. Next, apply a thin layer of Mod Podge to the top of the paper and ribbon. We applied with brushes, but we suggest using your hands to smooth it out if you want to try and avoid brush strokes.
  5. Allow your Message Board to dry, then add desired ribbon through the drilled holes for hanging. We added small containers to some of our projects for an added bonus. Check your recycle bin. A tomato paste can works well for holding pencils or markers. A discarded juice packet box (the little packets that you add to bottled water to make it flavored) makes a great box to hold ‘chore slips’. Simply cover your container with your favorite paper and Mod Podge. Allow to dry and add magnets. Have fun with your new Message Board!

Helpful Tip: We live in Michigan, which tends to be quite humid, and we found that the gloss Mod Podge can have a tendency to be sticky even after it has fully dried. For the final protective coat over the scrapbook paper (on the message center) – we recommend using the matte Mod Podge, referencing the Mod Podge label for manufactures recommendation, or not to use anything for the top coat.

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Other gift ideas for this craft.

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‘How To’ and craft class photos.

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Kiddo Tip: Let ‘em pour September 15, 2012

If you happen to have a little one who is exploring new found independence and trying new things like pouring his/her own drink . . . you may want to try this.

Open the door of the dishwasher (open it all the way). Set a cup on the inside of the open door and let the kiddo pour into the cup. If they happen to spill, just close the lid and run a load of dishes.

My oldest son came up with this one, when he was just a little ‘sprout’. I was loading the top rack of the dishwasher, he was cruising around the kitchen. He grabbed a cup, sat it on the open door, filled it up and off he went. I have no idea where he came up with the idea, probably my mom.

 

Kiddo Tip: Screen Door = Feline Barrier September 12, 2012

You can just imagine my horror when I walked into the nursery one morning and found our beloved cat sleeping on top of our 3-WEEK-old son’s chest! Our son is fine, he’s 12 (almost 13) and breathing quite well – but, that discovery absolutely made my skin crawl. Within hours my husband and I had installed a screen door to keep the feline out.

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You will need:

  • Screen door (If you pick up an older door from a sale, just make 100% sure that there is absolutely NO LEAD PAINT on it)
  • Hinges and screws to mount the door
  • Handle
  • Drill
  • Stain/paint/polyurethane
  • Brushes
  • Drop cloths
  • Sand paper
  • Tack cloth (A specialized type of wiping cloth that is treated with a ‘tacky’ material. It’s designed to remove loose particles of dust, dirt and lint from an area that you’re going to paint or stain.)
  • We installed a spring that pulls the door closed

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Directions:

  1. Lightly sand door. With a tack cloth, wipe remaining saw dust from door.
  2. Paint or stain/polyurethane door.
  3. Install hinges, hang door.
  4. Install handle and spring (optional).

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Note to self. Youngest son is 6, time to take down screen door. I guess I’ll add THAT to my never ending ‘To Do’ list.

 

Faces In Places July 19, 2012

“Cryin’ baby”, is what my youngest would say to me as he brought me this old alarm clock. I (being myself and all my busyness – not paying as much attention to the situation as I should have been), would reply “Oh, is the baby sad?”, thinking he was talking about himself. I would pick him up and kiss him until he giggled. I thought he just needed some extra lovin’ at that time. Finally, my oldest informed me to look at the back of the clock. “It looks like a crying baby”, he stated, and it sure does! Ever since, we have been on a mission to look for hidden faces in every day objects. This summer we decided to make it one of our photographic assignments – to photograph as many faces as we can find. Many are taken on the run, as you can see by the blurriness of some photos. We pull up, quickly take the shot and drive off. It’s a thrill when a face is found, the kids erupt with excitement. We’ll eventually have a photo book made through Snapfish (www.snapfish.com). I like that the kids are a little more observant of their surroundings, paying attention to details. We still aren’t set on some of the titles, it’s a work in progress.

Oh, and the pizza photo – that is EXACTLY how it was found. We didn’t alter any of the toppings.

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You will need:

  • Camera
  • Eagle eyes
  • Sense of humor

Don’t forget to take your camera EVERYWHERE with you. You never know when a face is going to pop up.

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The Essential White Envelope June 30, 2012

If you’re a parent with school-aged kids, one of the items on your “back to school list” will be white envelopes. Every week these envelopes travel to school containing items such as money for popcorn, Scholastic® book order forms, lunch money, notes to the teacher, etc. Your vital contents will arrive to school in one of these amazing little messengers of white paper (ONLY if your child remembers to give it to the teacher).

One summer day I was trying to figure out an activity for the kids and I to do. Earlier that morning we had hit the mother load of all garage sales . . . a retired grade school teacher was having a sale. We stocked up on games, over-sized books, flash cards, holiday decorations, window decals and the best prize of all, BUG STAMPS. No boy can resist, bug stamps. As soon as we got home I put those bug stamps to work. Along with ink pads and white envelopes, I came up with an extremely easy project. The kids wanted no part of this act, at first. Then, slowly I sucked them into doing all the work (boo-haaa-haaa-haaaaaa). No, actually we had some really wonderful conversations during this project. And I was given the opportunity to sit back, watch what they came up with and listen to how funny they are. Next school year when I am in my morning hustle, grabbing one of those envelopes – I’ll stop and think of the fun day we had stamping and just simply talking with each other.

You will need:

  • White envelopes
  • Stamps
  • Ink pads
  • Optional: colored pencils, markers, paints

This is an easy one folks – grab some envelopes, ink up some stamps and go for it. We even enhanced our stamps by coloring them in with colored pencils. If you’re feeling really creative, don’t forget to stamp images on the back as well.

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Batter Up March 31, 2012

Well, it’s that time of year. Yup, the time where my boys actually get an idea on just how unathletic I really and truly am. I cannot pitch, throw, catch, run, jump . . . you name it, I am physically unable to do it. They get a few laughs at dear old mom. So, I came up with this idea years ago when my oldest was quite young.

You will need:

  • Detergent/fabric softener bottle (one with a handle works best)
  • Rope
  • Duct tape
  • Rocks or water (for weight)
  1. Fill bottle with a small amount of rocks or water (you’ll have to figure out how much weight you want by trial and error). Place cap on.
  2. Tie rope around the handle of bottle.
  3. Throw free end of rope up and over a swing set, tree limb, rafters in your garage or barn – allowing the end with the bottle to hang freely.
  4. Have child stand next to the bottle to see exactly where you want it to hang. I usually have the bottle line up with their belly button. Tie free end of rope off (so it won’t slip up and down).
  5. At this time, you can really get an idea on how much weight you need in the bottle (water and rocks). Have the youngster take a few practice swings, you may need to add or take out weight. When you get the proper amount of weight into the bottle, secure cap (this is where the duct tape may come in handy).
  6. Make sure all siblings, pets and parents are out of the way and let ‘em hit the stink out of the bottle.

This is great for hand-eye coordination and offers a fantastic opportunity to talk with the kids about recycling/repurposing.

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Sock snowmen February 27, 2012

You will need:

  • 1 old white sock (hopefully still white)
  • Rice or other filler
  • 2 old colorful socks
  • Scissors 
  • Hot glue 
  • Rubber  bands
  • Buttons, beads, google eyes
  • Yarn, string, or ribbon

I stumbled on this nifty idea while browsing Pinterest for the first time – I LOVE that place!  You can find the step by step instructions on this site:

www.thenshemade.com/2011/01/sock-snowmen.html

As you can see her snowmen are absolutely adorable! I decided to make the kid friendly recycle friendly version. Our lovely snowpeople were made by my 7 year-old son and 5 year-old daughter using random socks found in our drawers, whatever rice we had in the cupboard, and the supplies in our craft box. We had a blast putting them together and did it in about 20 minutes!