Friday, September 30, 2011

GUEST POST: Delia of Delia Creates

Well, we made it to the last day of Back to School Month. I laughed....I cried (no, literally, I did cry when the HTML wasn't behaving.) I hope you all had as much fun as I did!!

I've saved Delia from Delia Creates for the end and you are all in for a real treat! Delia, unbeknownst to her, has been my virtual blogging mentor as I started my blog not long after she started hers. She is the kind of blogger I aspire to be like. She takes phenomenal photos, she explains things so clearly and she comes up with great project ideas!

Here are some Peek-A-Boo Pleated Pillow Cases:

Awesome Puppets!!

Scrumptious Cinnamon Rolls

And these Hot and Comfort Sacks (I'm definitely giving these to my kids' teachers for the holidays!)

And this was a mere fraction of what Delia has in store for you on her blog! 

Today she's sharing with you a great organization tool: a whiteboard clock!

Hi Meremade readers!

I'm Delia from delia creates, and I'm pretty darn excited to share my back to school project with you.

I don't know about you, but the start of school for us means the start of a schedule. 


It can be a struggle to get my 1st grader to manage his time, so I came up with a clock to not only help him improve his time management but also help him with learning how to tell time.

It's essentially a dry erase board turned clock.

I took a square 17x17 dry erase clock from Walmart {about $6}, and some clock hardware that I got from Hobby Lobby. I didn't like the clock hands the mechanism came with so I bought extra hands.

I measured with a ruler to find the center.

I used the smaller drill bit to drill a hole from the back to the front. This is the pilot hole. Sorry no picture.

Then I used the large drill hole from the front to the back {so the metal would look clean on top and bend into the back}. The measurements for your clock pieces should be listed on the package. Use that as a guide to decide how big of a drill bit you need to use.

I applied some vinyl numbers.

Thank you to my friend Tiffany who cut these for me for free! Which was lucky because I was starting to go way over my normal budget. : / Thanks Tiffany!

I assembled the clock as described on the clock mechanism package.

And that's it!

Easy enough?

I add my son's schedule to the clock with dry erase markers so he knows what he's supposed to do and when.

It's also great for when he doesn't believe me that it's homework time. I just say, " Check the clock." :) It reduces arguments from him - a little bit anyway. It also helps that he can read. 

If you're child can't read yet you can always draw pictures instead. 

So obviously this clock only spans 12 hours. Which means that I have to change it daily, but it's dry erase. So it's easy. And I can change it easily for when he isn't in school on the weekends.

I can write reminders on the side or even attach notes/permission slips to the clock so we don't forget them as we leave the door in the morning.

I've considered using it myself and writing down my appointments on it! Now that I'm pregnant I'm twice as forgetful. :)

I hope you are all enjoying being back in school! Thanks for having me, Jennifer!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

GUEST POST: Holly of 504 Main

I first became acquainted with Holly's 504 Main blog through her Friday Linky parties. Always such fun to be had there!

How good does this look? Pomegranate Champagne Cocktail (it's never too early to drink champagne)

And I love the details on this homemade textured leaf pot:

She even adorns walls: accessorizing with stencils and chalk:

And how impressed would your kids be if you whipped up a batch of these pretzel "fries"?

Today, Holly is going to share with you tips on how to assemble a School Organizer (we could all use a little more organization in our lives, right?)

 I am enjoying all of these back to school ideas and projects...
hope you are too!
Guess what...we have been back to school since August...
in fact we are getting ready for our Fall Break!


I am perpetually disorganized, so I am just getting around to putting together our School Organizers. These very EASY organizers are actually more than just for school they are for life.

Joe's current binder

Joe's original Preschool binder (2005)

When I had one kiddo, I could keep it all straight in my head...but with 2 in school...not a chance!

So, while I have been doing this since my son started preschool, back then it was for memory it is necessity.

Now, let me preface this by saying you can jazz these guys up as much as you want. I chose to keep mine simple. It is all personal preference!

Here is how I keep my kids school/activity/sports schedules on track (and more importantly me on track) !


Supplies (per binder):

  • 3 ring binder. I like a minimum of 2"
    1-2 packages
  • Clear sheet protectors
  • Tabbed dividers


    1.  I like the clear view binders, so that on the cover, I can insert the school year schedule (info at a glance!)

    2.  I also include a sheet in the front with a copy of the emergency info and all necessary school numbers/email...just in case my hubby needs to be updated or I am out of town, etc.

    3.  Label each binder with the kiddos name - I just simply used stickers to put their names on the spine.

      4.  Determine your categories. For example, my son's categories are: school rules/info, band, class rules/info, activities, sports (also subdivided as different sports begin), memories, science camp, and Cub Scouts. My daughter attends 2 different preschools, so she has one section for each preschool rules/info, one for writing practice, one for special art (hand prints, etc.), there is also a section for her sports and activities.

      5.  Slide the pertinent information into sheet protectors and insert in the correct section.

      I like to keep about 5 extra empty sheet protectors in each section to make it easy to slip new info in. 

        And that is it! Easy Peasy.

        You want to know my favorite part of this...
        apart from not forgetting anything or losing important paperwork...
        I discover cute things like this: my son and daughter's self-portraits
        (same age, same school, 6 years apart!

         Thanks Jennifer for inviting me to be a part of your Back to School Month!

        Come on by and say hi at Main Street - 504 Main that is...

        There's all kinds of crafting and DIYing over there.

        I also cook, bake, and chat about other fun stuff...

        like my crazy busy life and my 2 kiddos!

        504 Main

        Wednesday, September 28, 2011

        GUEST POST: Miss Make (and a winner)

        Here is our winner for the Sephora Grab Bag!!

        #26 cupcake mama, who said...
        "Nice! My teen would kill for the Bobby Pins and I love the compact mirror!"

        I'll be contacting you shortly. 
        I first met Devon of Miss Make at the Urban Craft Center in Santa Monica (where she sometimes teaches). She is the type of person who just oozes creativity. 

        Remember that snazzy clutch I made?

        It's her pattern!!

        Look at what else she's made:

        A Modern Quilt:

        Homemade Halloween Peanut Butter Cups! 

        A T-shirt recycled into a bag!!

        Blueberry Cheesecake! How yummy does this look?

        Today, Devon is sharing a great mealtime project with us (that goes quite nicely with yesterday's addition!)


        Hello! I’m Devon from Miss Make. My day job is working in film & tv production offices. During nights / weekends / all other times, I can’t stop making things. Sewing and baking are my favorites but I basically love everything craft and kitchen related... making Blue Moon cupcakes...

        interesting quilts...

        Today I’m going to share a simple little embroidered placemat project with you. 

        This placemat not only looks super cute on a breakfast nook or kitchen table, it also helps kids learn how to set a table and, depending on their age, how to start reading. They’ll love matching the shapes of the silverware to the shapes on the placemat.

        *If you aren’t a sewer but you still want to make this, you could take a preexisting placemat and some fabric paint and paint the place settings instead of embroidering.*

        ½ yard fabric
        13.5” x 19.5” piece of batting or felt
        embroidery floss
        matching thread

        First cut two fabric rectangles that are 14” x 20".

        With an invisible fabric pen, sketch a rough outline of a place setting onto one rectangle – a plate, fork, knife and spoon – with the words for each inside the shape.

        Using embroidery floss, embroider along your sketch lines.

        Cut a piece of felt or batting that’s 13.5” x 19.5”. Pin it to the wrong side of the embroidered rectangle. Then pin the right side of the other fabric rectangle to the right side of the embroidered rectangle.

        Sew around the rectangles with a ¼” seam allowance, leaving a 4” gap in the seam. Remove any pins that are on the outside and carefully turn the whole thing inside out so that the felt is sandwiched on the inside. Remove any additional pins and press everything. Press the open portion of the seam under ¼” and topstitch all the way around right along the edge.

        If you want you can add a few vertical lines across the placemat to help holding the felt in place and to add a little quilting. Just connect the top and bottom topstitch lines with another seam, backstitching at the beginning and end.

        Voila! Placemat!


        Tuesday, September 27, 2011

        Guest POST: Zoe of Captain Crafty!

        I just love this blog to pieces! First of all...she has cows! She has chickens!! (What I wouldn't do for a small chicken coop in my Los Angeles yard!) She has the best crafts for her small kids! It reminds me a lot of fact I think she's living the Waldorf lifestyle!

        She's always encouraging creativity. I love this idea of a magnetic table where kids gets to tinker with washers and screws:

        And these t-shirts recycled into baby bonnets are just so cute!

        She dyed these scarves for her kids to play with. 

        And look at these incredible dolls she makes!!

        We do little things around the house to cut down on our earth footprint - how we pack school lunches is a part of that. We skip juice boxes and send water in reusable canteens, we don't buy individually portioned snacks, we use reusable sandwich bags and I send real silverware and cloth napkins.

        When my little boys head off to preschool I pack their lunches with my very own hand made napkins. I am way too lazy to actually fold, iron, and hem them though. The great thing about Kona Cotton is you can let the edges fray for a shabby chic look. You can make these napkins in just a few minutes and they can easily by stitched by hand too. Add a pocket for tucking silverware inside or a loving note of encouragement.

        So sweet and fun to send so much love off with your little ones!

        Print out a Captain Crafty Project Sheet and make your own School Lunch Napkins!