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Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas! And a much needed break!


We would both like to wish each and every one of you a very Merry Christmas! 

It has been another fun filled year of sharing our crafts, recipes and life with you.  We want to thank you for following our blog, commenting on our posts, entering the giveaways and giving us great feedback and encouragement.

We are going to take a little break from blogging to spend with our family and to get life after the holidays back in order.  We have many wonderful ideas to share with you after the holidays!

Have a Merry Christmas and Blessed New Year!


P.S. We still haven't heard back from all the giveaway winners. Please check that you didn't win one of giveaways from the 12 days of giveaways!  All prizes will be awarded before December 31!
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Friday, December 23, 2011

Crochet Dreamz Pattern Winners



We want to thank Shenaaz of Crochet Dreamz Patterns for helping us celebrate our blogiversary.  Shenaaz has been very generous to our followers for this giveaway and for previous giveaways.  We are very thankful to partner with her and share her beautiful designs. We can't wait to see what the winners makes from their new patterns!
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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Wedding Gifts

My husband's cousin got married back in October and I made my favorite gifts for them.  I made them a Casserole Carrier and etched the casserole dishes.  I also got them a recipe binder and made a CD of all my recipes for them to have.  Let me show them to you.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

My Favorite Sign!

This is a sign I made for our friend Samy's 5th birthday. I varied the fonts and colors to really make a statement.  Samy's mom calls Samy, "Samy Sunshine".  (Samy's middle name is Rae, so she's a ray of sunshine, get it?)

When we reflect on things we create, we usually would make changes. The only thing I would change about this sign is using a much lighter stain when I distressed it.  The stain really took away some of the brightness, in the colors, I would have liked to keep.  Honestly though, I still love the sign and hope to make many more.

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Monday, December 19, 2011

Stringbean Creations Giveaway Winner



We want to thank Loria of Stringbean Creations for helping us celebrate our blogiversary.  Loria's banners are adorable, high quality and lovingly made.  We know you would love any of her banners to help decorate a room, celebrate a special event or for a fantastic photography prop.


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Sunday, December 18, 2011

Holiday Teacher Gifts

I was hoping to share with you the teacher gifts I gave to Ryan's teacher before today, but my to do list this week was a bit overwhelming.  I decided to do a mostly handmade Christmas.  That wouldn't have been so daunting if I didn't have to finish them by December 17 and also do a bunch of crochet orders.  I have been working myself like a dog.  Thankfully, I plan to take a break close to Christmas and afterwards.  It will be much needed.

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Saturday, December 17, 2011

And the winner of the felted acorns from Feltjar is.....

Once again, thank you to Laura, from Feltjar for sponsoring this giveaway!

The winner was chosen using random.org.
And the winner is.....
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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Blissful Sewing Patterns Winners





We want to thank Surayya of Blissful Sewing Patterns for helping us celebrate our blogiversary.  Thank you also for introducing our readers to your sewing patterns!  We can't wait to see what the winners makes from these patterns.




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Unclaimed Prizes means New Winners!

There have been a few prizes that were never claimed.  We gave more than enough time (a week or more versus 48 hours) for the winners to respond.  Their loss is your gain!


The winner of a crochet pattern from Mamachee Crochet Patterns is:

mary gliddenCollapse
Following Tara's neat blog too!

The second winner of a crochet pattern to Mamachee Crochet Patterns is:
Aimee ReedCollapse
I follow Tara's blog. :)

The winner of 3 crochet patterns from RAKJ Patterns is:
my new fave is the ornament beanie!!!

crescendogal@yahoo.com

If you won, please email us at oursevendwarfs@gmail.com to claim your prize.  We don't want you to miss out so please email us within 48 hours!  Thank you again for entering our giveaways and following the blog!


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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Mittens

I tried something new again and this time it is making mittens.  A lady from church asked me to make a pair of mittens.  She had a friend who crochets that was making them, but couldn't figure out the pattern.  I gladly took on the challenge.  If you haven't figured me out yet, I love a challenge.


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Old Time Pottery $50 Gift Card Winner!

It is time to announce the winner of the Old Time Pottery $50 Gift Card!  I hope this makes someone very happy at Christmastime!  Go grab some wonderful home items from decorations, dishes, rugs, and so much more!

We would like to thank Old Time Pottery for their generosity and for giving our followers a chance to do some fun free shopping!

Whether you are the winner or not, don't forget to become an Old Time Pottery VIP for a chance to win one of five $1,000 gift cards.  I love even more fun shopping!

Now for the winner:




ElisabethCollapse
I'm now following on GFC!



Congratulations to our winner!  Please contact us at oursevendwarfs@gmail.com to claim your prize.  Include your address so that your gift card can be sent to you.  Thank you again to Old Time Pottery!

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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

And the winner of the $50 gift certificate to Moonpig.com is....

We'd really like to thank Moonpig for teaming with us for this very generous giveaway of a $50 gift card to their online store.  We just wish we could win it!
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Monday, December 12, 2011

Christmas Gifts

Here's a post I did from last year. I thought you may be able to use some of the gift ideas.  Speaking of gift ideas, I'd better get busy creating.  Christmas is less than two weeks away.  YIKES!!!!

'Tis the season to be busy.  Busy, I have been!  I have played nurse, baked, blogged, shopped, crafted, cooked, cleaned, decorated, wrapped, and played hostess for the past month!  My oldest daughter had her tonsils, adenoids, and a lymph node removed on December 9th.  She did wonderfully!  She's a tough one!  Anyway, that's where the nurse role came on.  The rest, just goes with Christmas.

Jill and I started this blog during the busiest time of the year!  This year was certainly no exception with the two weddings I went to, out of state, at the end of November. Then, the giveaways.  They sounded like a great idea at the time, and we had fun doing them, but wow... that was just another addition to our overflowing plates. No worries.  We've already begun thinking about our giveaways for next Christmas.  Woah... I guess I should let you in on a little secret.  The giveaways will continue throughout the year... just not on a daily basis.  We'll do our best though.  Giveaways are great fun.  I won four puzzles for my girls, on a blog, this Christmas!

Anyway, I wanted to share some of the Christmas gifts, I managed to make this year.  Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures of them all.  Have I mentioned my sleep deprivation?  I am not at my sharpest without sleep. Hopefully, I'll get those folks to send me pics and post them later.

Some of my gifts were copy crafting!

I made a pair of these for my mom and myself.  Notice I made my snowman one block taller.  I liked him better this way!
 http://undermypolkadotumbrella.blogspot.com/2010/11/2x4-snowman.html
Copy crafting at it's best http://undermypolkadotumbrella.blogspot.com/2010/11/photobucket.html

For teacher's gifts I attached clothespins on the back for their gift cards.  Such a cute presentation!

I made 10 of these for friends. You would have thought I would have taken some pictures of the unwrapped gift!
Here's the first one I made for our family.
It's a HowDoesShe craft. http://www.howdoesshe.com/2x4-to-birthday-boardtutorial


Then there's the wreath I copied from Jill.  I added some bells and a ribbon and voila I have the perfect UK wreath for my brother in law, Jim: a huge UK fan. http://www.oursevendwarfs.com/2010/12/sparkle-wreath-tutorial.html


Then, there are the coasters.  I made a set for my daughter's teachers, a set for my mom, and a set for my mother in law.  She's retired Navy so I made hers with great Navy scrapbook paper.  I just forgot to take a picture of them!  Grrr... Here's a tutorial Jill did on the coasters.  http://www.oursevendwarfs.com/2010/12/gift-idea-inexpensive-coasters-tutorial.html

And then folks, I got creative on my own....

For my daughter's teachers' gifts I put a few handmade items together to come up with:

A tshirt, four kinds of homemade treats, and coasters, all in a decorated, reusable, plastic bin.

Stay tuned for a tutorial on these easy shirts.

We'll do an embellishing with vinyl tutorial soon!

White candy bark and peppermint bark (recipes coming soon).


Then there were photo boards:
These things are so versatile and amazing.  Remember the "We Believe" one I did? http://www.oursevendwarfs.com/2010/12/making-photo-board-tutorial.html
I made some changes and a variety of gifts!

Another present for my UK loving brother in law.  Skeeter is his dog.

The glare so takes away from the cuteness of this.  My father in law is retired Navy so I thought this would be a great place for him to put Navy memorabilia.

This one is for my Daddy.

This is for my brother.  My girls will tell you, he is the best Uncle Ever!  They're right!

Here's another "We Believe" for my friend, Amy.


Remember the "Grateful" subway art?

I made this for my sweet, sweet, Aunt Esther.


Then there's this calendar creation I came up with. (I'll do a tutorial soon...)

For my Mother-In-Law.  Notice the Navy paper on the date blocks?  She's retired Navy, so fitting.  Then, to keep with the patriotic theme, I did white and red stripes.  It looks "flag-y" to me.

My brother's.  I used the same paper on his numbers that I did on his "We Love Uncle Darren" board. Matchy Matchy!  I also did themed paper for each month. 

My Dad's is sideways.  I still haven't learned how to flip pictures, sorry.




This was a gift to my daughters, from my friend, Lesli.  She got the idea from HowDoesShe.  So cute!http://www.howdoesshe.com/bucket-o%E2%80%99-chalk

Here's the inside of the bucket!

This is the burlap pillow Lesli made me.  I LOVE the font she chose.  Too cute!

As you can see, it's been a busy time for all of us crafty gals.  There's still pictures of my handmade gifts, I didn't post, because I forgot to take them.   Still, I hope you're inspired to get your crafts on!
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Sunday, December 11, 2011

Inner Hooker Giveaway Winners!


We want to thank Scotti of Inner Hooker for helping us celebrate our blogiversary and for being so generous to our readers.  We know that she will make 3 lucky people very happy with their new patterns today! We are so appreciative of your generosity, Scotti!

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Saturday, December 10, 2011

Santa shirt tutorial

Last week my oldest son, Ryan was Santa for his Kindergarten class play, "Twas the night before Christmas."  He was incredibly excited to be Santa.  His teacher asked me if I could get a costume or have something for him more than just a red shirt to wear.

His teacher was great and let me know about it in early November so that I would have plenty of time to figure something out.  So what did I do?  I waited until three nights before to figure out his costume!  I am great at procrastination!


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Friday, December 9, 2011

And the winner of the $20 gift certificate, to Thirty-One gifts is....

Thank you to Cassie Skipper, independent stylist for Thirty-One gifts, for her generous donation.  The winner visit her online site, and apply the $20 gift certificate to any merchandise they choose. Thirty-one has fabulous gifts for everyone on your shopping list.  You still have time to get personalized gifts, delivered to your door, in time for the holidays!

The winner was chosen by random.org. Congratulations to....
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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Our Christmas Traditions

I love traditions and have done my best to start my own with my girls. 

I believe live trees are one of the greatest Christmas gifts you can give your family.  Going to buy a tree, each year, is something I remember ever so well from my childhood.  Unfortunately, my husband was not raised the same way. Plastic and wire trees with silver icicles dangling were what he remembers.  Somehow, I have convinced him that the mess of a real tree is ever so worth it. (Probably because I'm usually the one that cleans most of it up.) I know they are expensive.  I say it's a worthwhile splurge! I also know they smell terrific and look genuine.  What's more fun than walking through a tree farm seeking out the ever so perfect tree for your family?  Live Christmas trees are one place I can stand imperfections. An occasional stray branch adds charm.  It's whimsy, not messy! 

This year we ventured about 30 miles to Jack's tree farm.  Here the girls chose their "perfect" tree.  Was it the tree I would have chosen?  Not at all!  It is small for our living room that has 2 story high ceilings. It's also a little thin for my liking; however, they say it's perfect and so in our living room it is!


Something my mom started was collecting ornaments, from places we travel, to put on the tree. Our tree is adorned with ornaments that represent memorable vacations in our lives.  Every ornament has a special tale.  We talk about where each ornament came from, when we hang it on the tree.

A tradition we didn't have as children was the tattle tale elf. We were blessed with an "Elf on the Shelf" three Christmases ago.
On November 30th, we read the book and discuss the elf's job: reporting to Santa. GraciAnn has named our elf  Dobbo.  I'm pretty sure that wasn't his name two years ago, but since known of us remember exactly, I think Dobbo will work just fine.  The story goes the elf reports the children's behavior to Santa.  Since he leaves each night, while the kids are sleeping, to visit Santa, he finds a new place in the house to reappear.  The fun is, the kids get to find his new location everyday.  Plus, he really needs to be high so our little gals can't be tempted to touch him.  The rest of the story is if he gets touched, he loses his magical powers to fly to Santa each night.  Well, we don't want him to lose that magic.  It comes in handy to remind the girls that Dobbo will tell Santa if they make bad choices.  I have seen many people online that have done wonderfully clever things with their elves.  I do think the elves are getting a little too naughty for their own good... but it's all in good fun and you can certainly keep your elf out of trouble, if you'd like.  Here are some elf adventures I saw today. You may also want to check out pinterest.  I hear there are some great ones there too!


Another tradition we have is a count down calendar. I invested in the great pottery barn advent tree I mentioned in an earlier post. Santa leaves the girls notes each night. For the past three years, he also left them chocolate.  My girls have inherited my love of chocolate so this is definitely their favorite part; although, they pretend to love the notes as well. My five year old daughter gleefully bounds down the stairs, each December morning, to see what Santa's left while she slept.  It's so great to see GraciAnn reading her own Santa notes this year. She'll even read Mariella's to her.

Another big tradition we have is sending out Christmas cards. We have family pictures taken and cards made. We then send them to family, friends, and my husband's customers.  We send out nearly 250 a year.  It's a big undertaking but well worth it.  We love to share an annual family picture with others. John and I just got back from a 7 day cruise. (I'd never been away from my girls for more than a day before this!) Anyway, we're super behind on everything, includng our Christmas cards.  We're going to try to fit these in next week.  I see a lot of late nights in my future... yawn.... The above picture is from last year.

The good news is I have taken my kids to see Santa.  Each year we visit the Santa that comes to our local Country Store. The Santa is a great country Santa. Don't you think?
Our Christmas decorating is behind where I'd like it to be the beginning of the second week of December too.  We've had two cold and rainy days so I haven't finished the outdoor decorating at all.  I've lacked motivation so I haven't finished the indoor decorating either.  I do have a deadline set for myself though!

Are you looking for easy Christmas decorations? Here's a link to an ever so cute Christmas subway art. This is the same lady who created the Thanksgiving one I included in an earlier post.  She did all the work for us!  All you need to do is put it in a frame!  Voila!   Christmas Subway Art

Don't worry, Jill and I will continue to share holiday decorating ideas, traditions, and recipes.
By the way, I am ALWAYS looking for ideas! Please share your decorating suggestions, ideas, and your holiday traditions by commenting on this post.We look forward to learning from you!



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Wednesday, December 7, 2011

RAKJ Patterns Giveaway Winner


We want to thank Kristi of RAKJ Crochet Patterns for joining with us to celebrate our blogiversary!  We really appreciate her generosity!  We hope that our winners enjoy the free patterns and/or their free one month membership!  Catch some more free patterns from Kristi today on Facebook.  Jill loves her Wednesday Fun Day!

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