We were also recently given shrinkable plastic by the sheet. And this is great because you can draw your own designs, cut them out, hole punch them, shrink them in the oven, and end up with all sorts of cool stuff.
If you’re not familiar with Shrink Plastic, it is super fun and simple craft with anyone who can color can do. However, it does require adult supervision at some point during the craft, cause you have to use the oven.
To do this craft you will need the following items:
Permanent markers- You can also use colored pencils, but I like the vibrancy of permanent markers.
You are looking to make a specific design, you will need to print that image out onto a piece of white paper. And then you will trace it onto the shrinkable plastic using a pencil. Word of advice: most shrinkable plastic shrinks significantly if you start with an image that is the size of a silver dollar, it will come out about the size of a dime.
Also important to note, punch a hole if desired, in the plastic before you shrink it. Once it has shrunk and is hard, it is almost impossible to put a hole in it. Especially without damaging the plastic.
Once your design is colored, punch a hole in it as desired/needed. Then cut your image/design out of the sheet, trim up any sharp/pokey edges. Use a nail file if needed. You can also file the plastic after it has been baked/shrunk and cooled down.
Most shrinkable plastic sheets will come with the heating/baking directions for the plastic, but it’s usually less than 10 minutes. And you will need to keep an eye on it. That is the step where you do not want small children around.
In the past, I’ve made wine charms, this year I made all kinds of cool stuff, including zipper pulls for the kids’ backpacks, I made keychains, I drew our family’s SCA heraldry/devices. I also made some little charms for a charm bracelet for my daughter.
Next up I will be drawing food and making little toy food for my son’s Playmobil characters to eat. While some of his sets have come with food, he is missing things like french fries, hamburgers, pizza. All things that the Playmobil guys in his adventures want to eat.
Q-insights is another company that I do research groups, focus groups, and online surveys to earn extra money.
They have a lot of stuff in South Orange County, and less often San Diego County. These days they are doing most of their studies online via chat or online surveys.
Right now Q-Insights is currently recruiting for an online study on the topic of Education.
Q-Insights is looking for males and females ages 22-45 for an upcoming multi-part survey.
The survey would have the following parts:
September 8 – You will need to complete a short survey and two online assessments that will take up to 2.5 hours. These can be done at your own time but must be completed on September 8th.
September 9 – You will be asked to complete another online survey and assessment that will take up to 2 hours. Again, this can be completed at your own time but must be completed on September 9th.
September 15-20 – Then between September 15th and 20th you will be sent a follow-up email with your results of the assessments and a survey about your experience, which should take no longer than 30 minutes.
If qualified and invited to participate, you will receive $375 for participating in the above 3 parts. Some participants may be asked to participate in an online interview or focus group between September 10th-16th for additional $125-$150 compensation.
To see if you qualify, please fill out the pre-screener survey here.
Flagship Research is conducting a paid research study and is looking for children 6-17 years of age and adults 18 and older who have diabetes. If you qualify it would be a 2-hour one-on-one interview for the adult and the parent would be able to attend with the child. The interview will be held online so you would need a computer with a webcam and microphone to participate. This interview will compensate the adults with the minor children $300 and the adults $200 in the form of a check that will be mailed at the completion of the project.
The details of this study are included below:
Dates: Starting Wednesday, February 3rd 2021
Times: Various times available
Duration: 2 hour
Incentive: $300 for Parents with kids, $200 for Adults
If you are interested and use an insulin pump please click on the link below to answer a few questions to see if you will be a good fit for this study.
Parents know that kids need a routine- It gives them stability and a sense of security. But, adults need a routine too. Working from home, routine is absolutely needed to keep me productive. I was talking to a lady at the gym today after yoga. She said it must be nice to work from home- all the free time! But really, today was my busiest day this week. After the gym, we had errands, then home to start dinner, school pick up, and prep for tomorrows tie-dye session while Bitty is at preschool.
Here are my 5 Tips for Maximizing your Routine:
Update your calendar: I sit down on Saturday night and go over my calendar for the next week. I take my paper calendars (Yes, I have one next to my bathroom vanity, and one on my desk), and make sure they match with the calendar on my phone. That way I’m not dependant on my phone all the time and everyone in the house can be on the same page.
Take Notes: I keep a spiral-bound notebook and pens in my purse at all times. I make notes about all kinds of stuff: Ideas for blog posts, appointments (Which I later put into my phone), shopping lists, etc. I sometimes use my phones note feature for this too, but there is something about putting pen to paper and writing.
Lay it out: Before bed, I lay out my clothes and the kids clothes for the next day. I also grind the coffee and set up the coffee maker. I put the kid’s lunch bags out of their backpacks and set them on the kitchen counter. It makes the next morning so much easier.
Look Ahead: Before you go to bed, take a look at your next day. What kinds of activities do you have? Work, school, gym, meetings? I feel more at ease knowing what is on deck for the next day.
Give yourself Grace: You are only human. If you can’t get everything done in one day, it’s cool. Tomorrow is another day (literally). There are so few things in this world that positively need to be done on a specific day (bills and doctor’s appointments are a few things that come to mind). Push your tasks forward to the next day, and make a conscious decision to work on those items or tasks the next day as priority items. No one is perfect (or insta-perfect).
Talk Back: How do you get the most out of your daily routine?
Museum Day is a one-day event in which participating museums and cultural institutions across the country provide free entry to anyone presenting a Museum Day ticket. Participants are allowed to download one ticket per email address. The ticket provides free general admission on Saturday, September 21, 2019, for two people.
For those of us in San Diego County, there are 37 choices, ranging from The New Children’s Museum downtown to the Museum of Making Music in Carlsbad. You can find a list of museums near you here.
Now, if you can’t make it out to free museum day, there are museums all over San Diego County that are FREE EVERY DAY!
Make it a frugal afternoon by packing your lunch and snacks (don’t forget water- it’s going to be a hot one here in San Diego and most of the southwest next weekend)! I raid our snack cupboard and pack lots of different choices, that way everyone is satisfied.
Talk Back: Which museum in your area are you excited about checking out on 9/21/19?
I love Craftsy! I love making stuff and being creative, but sometimes it’s hard to learn a new skill or hone one you already have on a budget. Craftsy to the rescue! They have awesome free classes where you can learn to do all kinds of cool stuff from cooking and baking to knitting!
The free mini classes can be viewed on any device, so you can learn anywhere! Right now there are 47 mini classes that are free. Mini-courses feature student-led discussions and are shorter in length than regular courses. They are a perfect way to learn new skills and experience the Craftsy platform first-hand.
Here are just a few of the ones I’ve saved to watch and explore:
It’s that time of year, when friends and relatives start asking you and your kids the dreaded question.. The Holiday gift question.
First of all, if you don’t have kids, please do your friends WITH kids a favor: Skip the toys that make noise/require batteries. Many a night I was woken by a phantom toy mysteriously going off. This Stupid Fisher Price Dog was the main culprit.
This year, we’re skipping all the “hot” toys. Why? Well, we don’t have cable, so Lil’ Man doesn’t really know about what toys everyone else has or wants. We mostly watch PBS and Netflix. I’m trying to get away from “stuff”. We have so many toys and stuffed animals. We don’t need a lot more stuff. I’m asking for more “experience” type gifts. Here are a few things that are always welcome in any household:
Groupon/living social/Amazon Local discounted vouchers or gift cards to places that kids love to go, but can be a little pricey. For us, that’s Urban Jungle, Kid Ventures, Boomers, bowling. Zoo tickets, movie tickets, and museum passes are great options as well!
If you have a vacation planned, ask for gift cards. We have a friend who takes their family to Disney World each year, and she asks her family to buy the kids Disney gift cards to help offset the cost of their vacation (bonus- Disney GC can be used almost anywhere in the park- food, gift shop, even admission!).
Accessories for toys or games the kids already have. We always need more train tracks for our Thomas the Tank Engine trains. Most kids could always use more pretend food (we like these and these from Melissa and Doug).
Gift baskets that include experiences: I know I keep going back to experiences, but kids and families love to do stuff together. Movie baskets that contain popcorn, candy, redbox codes or GC for redbox is always a big hit here. We’ve given pizza night baskets that contain the fixins for a pizza (boboli crust, toppings, sauce) and a board game. Use your imagination!
IOU’s/GC for dates or time with the kids: Lil’ Man and I have a special date every week. We go out to eat and do an activity together. Maybe you have a little in your life that you’d like to spend more time with? Give them the gift a a date! Ice cream feeding the ducks, exploring nature- all of these things are inexpensive for you and mean a lot to a kid.
Craft supplies. The most popular gifts we’ve both give and received have been treasure boxes (usually a decorative cardboard box from Michael’s) full of craft supplies. Dollar Tree has a great selection of craft kits, glitter glue, stickers, feathers, pom poms, construction paper, water color paint, acrylic paints. Add in some wooden cut outs from Michaels (.50 or less EACH), and a few paint brushes and the kids will have fun for hours. The best part: for less than $20, they’ve got a cool box and tons of stuff to keep them busy and unplugged!
Monthly Subscription Boxes: Kids love to get mail. Monthly subscription boxes like Kiwi Crate, Little Passports, Green Kid Crafts are a great option for kids to get a little something fun in the mail each month- and monthly subscription boxes aren’t that expensive! Adults love them too! BirchBox (makeup), UrthBox (snacks), and Dollar Shave Club (razors and shaving accessories for men and women) are all popular options!
I am all about picking up new skills and discovering new patterns, especially when they are free! Craftsy (which is an awesome repository of crafting and cooking classes) has a section dedicated to free classes. They also have a section dedicated to free patterns! What I really like is that you can take as many free classes and download as many free patterns as you like.