Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Upcycled Vintage Fans

I love recycling and making crafts and entertaining. I was able to combine all of those hobbies last week by making Upcycled Vintage Fans. I saw the idea in a craft book years ago and finally got around to making them. They were super easy and fun to make! Best of all, they required very little supplies, some of which may already be in your home. Below are the instructions in only 3 easy steps!

Step 1: Gather supplies. Old knives (I found some vintage-looking ones for .25 each at a thrift store). Vintage cards or postcards (I found some at thrift stores and a pack of new vintage-like valentines on clearance at a book store). Pieces of broken jewelry, fabric flowers, charms (all recycled). Double-sided tape. And Super glue.

Step 2: Using double-sided tape, adhere the knife to the inside of the card and use the tape to secure the card closed. If you are using a postcard, trace a piece of cardstock the same side as the postcard and use that for the backing of the fan.

Step 3: Using super glue (or any strong glue), affix charms, flowers, jewelry to the front of the card. Optional: Using a glitter pen, you can add small touches of glitter to the card and/or tie a pretty ribbon on the handle of the fan. I opted to keep mine simple.

That's it! These fans make lovely gifts to send home with guests after a fancy party. They look pretty sitting on each dinner plate of a victorian-style table setting.  Now all I have to do is have a Ladie's Tea Party so I can use these!

Tuesday, July 30, 2013


I love making Lip Balm! Out of all of the body care products I make for my business, The Ojai Apothecary, lip balm is by far my favorite. I discovered these adorable little slider tins (like the Village Lip Licker's brand from the 80s) and have had a lot of fun filling them with different flavored lip balms. Yummy!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Recycled Doll & Pony Houses

We LOVE to recycle just about anything into crafts, toys and--most of all--doll and pony houses. We also like to use items found in nature, building "Nature Houses" as part of our homeschooling curriculum. We do this at least twice a year. My children really enjoy this craft. Here's some of our creations...

Before I throw anything away, I consider putting it into our "Trash-to-Treasure Chest." The girls have access to the Treasure Chest whenever they feel like being creative!

We go on "Nature Walks" to collect bark, twigs, acorns, etc. and add them to our box of wooden supplies.

It takes A LOT of hot glue to make these houses, so we keep a nice supply of hot glue sticks on hand!

This house was made for Calico Critters.

Autumn added a second story for her small ponies.

Another house in progress...
Amber finished this one off with a 3-story house for her Calico Critters!
A house for My Little Ponies.
A room for Merida.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Quote of the Day

The girls spend a ton of time reading during the summer. Amber has already powered through several books. Autumn also loves reading, but must rely mostly upon me or Amber to read to her at this stage. She also LOVES books on CD. Today, during lunch, Autumn was talking about the latest book series they are listening to.

She said, "These are much better than movies. You can imagine the castle, the hallway, the windows and stuff like that. It's like a movie in your head."

Monday, July 15, 2013

Horse Camp, Week 1

Last week, the girls went to Christian Horse Camp in Ojai. They went for 5 hours each day for 5 days. They got to groom and ride the horses, along with daily Bible lessons and songs and crafts. This year's theme was Noah's Ark. This was the first year Autumn got to attend. They both loved it and Autumn loved getting to ride a horse for the first time. I wasn't able to get pics of her riding, though. They are going again next week. Yee-Ha! Here are a few pics that I was able to snag...

Colorado 2013

A few weeks ago the girls and I stayed in Denver with with my sister, Deborah, and her husband, Rich. Here's a few of my favorite pics...

The girls.

With Uncle Rich & Auntie Deborah and Chloe, the Wonder Dog.

They swam almost every day. Autumn learned to swim that week!