This Week Only! $5 off $5+ at Michaels!

Screen Shot 2019-06-17 at 8.15.46 AM.pngJust in time for summer crafts! Now through 6/22/19, you can find and use a $5 off $5+ (restrictions apply of course) on the Michaels website here.

This coupon is valid in-store only. If you need to shop online, there is a 40% off any one regular price item here. It also has restrictions.

I’m taking the kids this morning to find supplies for a project to work on this week! And don’t forget that Camp Creativity is in full swing! $3 craft classes where kids can make and take a project! Details can be found here.

Free Reading Event for All Kids at Central Library (San Diego, CA)

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On June 22 from 10am-1pm, the Special Needs Resource Foundation of San Diego and San Diego Family will be holding an All-Inclusive Read 3×3 Literacy Event: 3 Authors, 3 Hours, 3 Times the Fun at the San Diego Central Library.

San Diego Family Magazine is partnering with the San Diego Central Library @ Joan & Irwin Jacobs Common, Binford I CAN, Too! Center to promote literacy in kids from 0-10, put a free book in the hands of every child, teach empathy and compassion through stories and promote summer reading.

Every child that attends will receive a free book (while supplies last) donated by San Diego Family Magazine. We will have 3 authors (Salina Yoon, Sally J. Pla and Andrea Zimmerman) each read two of their books, followed by a craft for the kids.

The San Diego Central Library houses the Binford I CAN, Too! Center serving children with accessibility needs and their caregivers. The Binford I CAN, Too! Center offers access to technology, allowing patrons access to the following:

  • ZoomText: computer screen magnifier
  • JAWS: computer screen reader for the visually impaired, Read & Write Literacy: speech-to-text software, SARA Reader: converts text from printed to spoken
  • Optelec ClearView: 22” magnifier, High-definition keyboards, Adjustable height tables and Assistive Mouse/Ball Tracking.

In addition to the technology and equipment, the Center also provides periodic programming for and about children with special needs. These programs provide children with the opportunities to socialize, learn and have fun. Additional resources include large print and braille books, Sensory Integration Kits for children on the autism spectrum, and parent resource materials.

I’m excited to take the kids to this event and check out the Binford I CAN, Too! Center this summer.

Free & Low-Cost Events for Kids at Michaels!

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Did you know that Michael’s hosts free and low-cost crafting events for kids ages 3+?

This week there are some really fun activities!

  • 6/3: Sparkling Dragonflies (4-6pm)
  • 6/4: Woven Turtles (4-6pm)
  • 6/5: Butterfly Puppet Garden (4-6pm)
  • 6/6: Bug Catcher Jar (4-6pm)
  • 6/7 Painted Bug Rocks (4-6pm)

And the first 100 event attendees per store will receive a $5 off $5+ coupon! With so many craft supplies at $5 or less, you’ll be able to score something cool!

Screen Shot 2019-06-03 at 12.14.41 PM.pngAnd Every Saturday there is a new craft class from 10am-12pm for just $3!

I’m really looking forward to Camp Creativity.

Each week has a different theme, and each 30 minute craft session is only $3!

What I really like about these craft classes at Michaels is that the kids get to try out new crafts and I don’t have to lay out a ton of money to buy a bunch of supplies for something that the kids may not be all that into.

And- to be honest, I’m not faced with the craft aftermath clean up. Yall know what I mean.

Brick or Treat is Coming Back at Legoland!

BOT_PumpkinBuild_LLF_secondary.JPGI told the kids this morning that we’ll be going to Brick or Treat at Legoland this year, and they were so excited.

LEGOLAND® California Resort transforms into a monster mash bash for the ultimate family fun during its Brick-or-Treat Party Nights Halloween celebration, presented by Disguise Costumes, every Saturday night (Sept. 29, Oct. 6, 13, 20, & 27) at 5 p.m. with more Park after dark!  LEGOLAND® California‘s Halloween festivities is filled with sweeter treats, exciting entertainment and not-so-spooky thrills.

bot-t2-sea life.jpgAlong with 16 Treat Stations sure to satisfy everyone’s sweet tooth, guests can collect specialty items such as LEGO® commemorative brick, LEGO® Life Magazine containing a special gift and enjoy a bonus treat station inside SEA LIFE® aquarium.  In addition to the treat stations, the kids can’t wait to check out:

  • Frankenbrick’s Lab, kids can partake in an interactive show with a chance to act as scientists on stage and create their own slime
  • Model Shop roof will be the home to AstroBash, a space-themed dance party that’s out of this world
  • A new pop-badge challenge in Fun Town
  • A fall festival complete with a LEGO®pumpkin patch building activity, BOOgrass Band (this is my favorite part of the night- Seriously! Everything is awesome done by a bluegrass band… it’s rad!)
  • And Bitty’s Favorite- A special LEGO® Friends meet and greet in Heartlake City, where kids can decorate their own craft

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Brick-or-Treat Party Nights is a special event and admission can be purchased for as low as $54 if purchased online in advance.  Additionally, guests can purchase a full 2nd day Resort Hopper ticket to enjoy LEGOLAND California, SEA LIFE aquarium and LEGOLAND® Water Park.  Special event ticket holders can enjoy costume contests, trick-or-treating at candy stations filled with tasty goodies and other surprises, festive music and live entertainment.

LEGOLAND California and SEA LIFE Aquarium are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on select dates throughout October.  With special event admission to Brick-or-Treat Party Nights on September 29, October 6, 13, 20 and 27, guests can extend their day until 9 p.m. at both LEGOLAND California and SEA LIFE Aquarium to enjoy all the Halloween festivities plus add on a 2nd day Resort Hopper to extend the fun all weekend long.  For exclusive savings and more information, visit www.BRICKORTREAT.com or call 760-918-5346.

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Tissue Paper Stained Glass Craft

IMG_8180.jpgThis is a variation of a craft I did as a kid, and I have done with my kids! It’s very simple, as kids as young as about 2 1/2 can do it with help. This is the project that Margaret and I worked on as part of our most recent Craft Morning.

You  (and your kids) can make this craft as simple or complex as you would like. Since Margaret was helping me, we decided to go simple. We used an Ikea picture frame, but you can use anything clear and glass (or even plastic). It’s really fun to do this craft with a clean baby food jar with the label removed. You can put a battery operated tea light into it to make it a “stained glass” candle holder.

To do this craft, you’ll need:

(All of the Amazon links above are affiliate links- I *might* earn a commission if you make a purchase from one of these links).

  1. Clean the glass or plastic and dry it.
  2. If you’ve got a wooden frame, paint it with acrylic paint and set aside to dry. I also used Posca Paint Markers to paint the frames. Discard the piece of cardboard/backing.
  3. On the exterior of the pane of glass or whatever you are using, draw or place the “panes” using  Glitter glue, black tape, paint markers, or washi tape. Once completed and the medium is dry, it’s time to do the stained “glass”.
  4. Carefully coat the side opposite the one that is “paned” of your glass or plastic with Modge-Podge. Use a foam brush.
  5. Apply the tissue paper pieces to the Modge-Podge coated surface. Make sure to cover the entire surface with Modge-Podge and tissue paper. To have a darker color, apply multiple layers of the same color of tissue paper.
  6. Once complete, set the item down to dry, wet side up.
  7. After the item is dry, trim off any excess tissue paper that is sticking up.
  8. Spray the side that has been Modge-podged with Clear Spray Paint/Sealer.
  9. After it has dried, put the glass into the picture frame and secure the glass in with the metallic tabs- if that is not an option, you may hot glue the glass into the frame.
  10. Secure a ribbon to the back of the frame (you can hot glue a ribbon) and hang in a sunny place.

Here are a few that Margaret and I made for her room:

We may be making these for Mother’s day for some family members. I’d love to see what kinds of crafts you and your kids do!

Our next Craft Morning will be February 19th. We’ll be painting and hiding Friendship Rocks. If you are in the San Diego Area, you are welcome to join us!

Craft Mornings: Creativity and Fun!

Screen Shot 2017-10-31 at 8.29.00 PMFor the past few months, Bitty and I have been hosting Craft Morning at our house.  We set up a table (or two) get out craft supplies, invite mommies and their littles over, and we create.

Sometimes I have a specific craft in mind (ornaments in December), but sometimes we just look at what is available, and creativity takes over!

Tomorrow, we’re doing it again! I’ve got supplies for tissue paper stained glass and scrapbook paper wreaths, but my craft supply stash is pretty deep, so there will be other supplies out for whatever the mommies and kids want to make.

I’ve started a Pinterest Board with ideas here. If you are a San Diego area parent and you’d like to join us, check out the event page here.

February’s Craft Morning will be held at a park, and we’ll be painting and hiding rocks! All of our Craft Mornings are free to attend. Screen Shot 2018-01-28 at 9.25.31 AM.png I get craft supplies for free from local swaps, Buy Nothing groups, Craigslist, as well as family and friends who are cleaning out their supplies.

I hope to see lots of smiling faces at our upcoming craft events!!

Get your Craft on (for free) with Craftsy Free Mini-Courses!

If you’re anything like me, you love to learn new stuff. When I found out that Craftsy is offering free mini-courses, I had to take advantage!

If you’re new to Craftsy, the 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.

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Here are just a few of the free mini-courses available:

  • Know Your Wool: Do you wonder where your yarn comes from? Learn about different types of wool and the individual characteristics of each.
  • The Hand-Painted Cake: Elevate your cake with Erin Schaefgen’s freehand painting techniques. Create beautiful and edible works of art with Erin’s tips and tricks.
  • Creative Quilt Backs: Make the back of your quilt just as interesting as the front! Oh, Fransson! blog author Elizabeth Hartman walks you through everything you need to know to make beautiful quilt backs.
  • Modern Buttercream: Learn to use buttercream like a pro! Discover the tricks and tips to construct and create a beautifully finished buttercream cake.
  • Short Rows: Don’t fall short because you find short rows intimidating! Learn four different techniques to creating short rows, and discover how they can make shaping a knitted garment a snap.
  • Perfect Pizza at Home: Stretch your dough and your imagination as Peter guides you through each step of making a pizza. You’’ll make pizza sauces, consider cheese options and bake five types of dough in your conventional home oven. gImpress Italian purists with a slice of your Sicilian-style homemade pies, cook creative flavor combinations for more adventurous palates and even provide gluten-free pizza lovers with mouth-watering meals.
  • Complete Knife Skills:Become faster and more accurate with your knife work, and create dishes that cook evenly and look truly professional. Guided by chef Brendan McDermott, you’’ll explore proper hand placement and the four fundamental cuts. Learn to dice, mince and julienne a range of produce. Find out how to chop herbs without bruising them or losing flavor, and never again cry when cutting an onion. Uncover Brendan’’s favorite shortcuts for working with butternut squash, pineapple, chiles, citrus and more. Discover the four knives every chef needs in their kitchen, and enjoy a bonus lesson on honing and sharpening your knives at home!

I’m taking the Complete Knife Skills Class!

If the classes above aren’t your cup of tea,  Here’s the full list of Craftsy free mini classes to choose from

Which mini-course are you taking?