2013: The Year in Review


This was a pretty awesome year here at the blog and in real life...

To start things off, Mr. Crafty Scientist and I got engaged!

We visited the National Cherry Blossom Festival in DC this spring and happened to see the Floral Library. Mr. Crafty Scientist and I also went to Durham, NC for my sister's white coat ceremony and then I shared photos of our pretty hotel room.

The blog got a new facelift and design in March.


As for the crafty projects I made this past year, check these out (and be sure to SCROLL through all of them)...




If you want to check out my favorite posts from 2012, click here. For the top 11 projects of 2011, click here. And if you just want to see all the fun tutorials, check out the Experiments tab of the header. The Printables and Roundups are all here under the Past Research tab.

Happy New Year to all of you - cheers to an even better, craftier 2014!

Fun Reading in 2013


I know some of my favorite bloggers round up what they read in 2013 and their favorites (shout outs to/for Krug the Thinker's 2012 list, Joyful Whimsy's 2013 list, and Maybe Matilda's 2012 list of intense and important books). I'm a little less organized (no ratings or summaries of all of them - sorry!) and I read mostly non-mind-altering-nor-life-changing books in my down time. As in, forensic and legal thrillers and mysteries. And this past year, I read big chunks of series from Kathy Reichs and John Sandford as well as Nelson DeMille. I enjoyed most of them (in recent years I actually stopped reading books mid-way through if I hated them). If you have questions about any of the books specifically, just ask! Also note that the links to all of these books in the list below are to Goodreads. You can find my Goodreads profile here.

Also, in other awesome discoveries, if you're looking for new books to read, these are some seriously helpful book recommendation websites:

So without further ado, here's a list of my fun reading from 2013 (be sure to SCROLL through all the books - there are more than 40)!



Any recommendations for 2014 for me?

Confetti Ornament

This is one of my favorite new ornaments (and I made quite a few this year!) - it took some time because I did things the difficult way, but I love the result.


This is so easy that I think calling it a "tutorial" is kind of an oversell, but here are the rough directions and obviously a ton of pictures of the results....

Supplies
  • Confetti OR a hole punch and lots of different papers
  • Glass ornament
  • Glue
  • Ribbon
  • Handful of sequins

Instructions

Gather supplies. Hole punch circles from lots of different colored and textured (and glittered) papers. I used mostly solid cardstock because I wanted paper that had blue on both sides and most of my scrapbook paper with patterns had a white backside and I love how it turned out, but I'm sure it would look awesome with more patterns.

It took me some time to punch the holes in the paper, but if I didn't fill up the ornament so much or used existing confetti or used my Silhouette to cut the paper, this could have been done in less than 15 minutes!

Put the sequins and the punched circles into the ornament and glue the top on. Add a ribbon and hang up on your tree!




I'll be linking up to some of my favorite parties...
Tuesdays: New NostalgiaHope StudiosLadybug BlessingsFunky Polkadot GiraffeCoastal CharmA Bowl Full of LemonsNot Just a HousewifeA Diamond in the StuffhomeworkCrafty ConfessionsMe and My BoysSugar BeeChef in TrainingToday's Creative BlogHome Stories A to ZDIY by DesignTales of a Trophy WifeOur Delightful Homehomemade gingerIf It's Not BaroqueTime to SparkleInspiration ExchangeThe Blackberry VineSalt Tree SocialThe Scoop
Wednesdays: Creations By KaraSeven Thirty ThreeSugar and DotsSomeday CraftsLil LunaSew Much AdoWe Are That FamilyA Little TipsyMy Girlish WhimsPolka Dots on ParadeGinger Snap CraftsFrugally SustainableHandy Man Crafty WomanMade to Be a MommaJAQS StudioThe DIY DreamerFree Pretty ThingsWork It WednesdayLife InspiredPinterest Power PartyWork It WednesdayOrganize and Decorate EverythingMoonlight & Mason Jars
Thursdays: House of HepworthsA Glimpse InsideFireflies and JellybeansKatie's Nesting SpotBeyond the Picket FenceRhinestone BeagleSeven AliveThe 36th AvenueProject Stash Link Party52 Mantelslive. laugh. rowe.Artsy CornerDelightful OrderThe Train to CrazyMine for the MakingThe Taylor HouseThe Frugal GirlsNo Minimalist HereKeep Calm & Link UpCreate It ThursdayInspire Me PleaseThe Creative ConnectionThe Weekly Creative
Fridays: Fingerprints on the FridgeLink Party PaloozaThe Shabby NestSimply Sweet Home30 Handmade DaysThe Party BunchLovely Crafty HomeCatch As Catch CanNap Time Crafters504 MainMy Simple Home LifeSimply DesigningThe Picket FenceChic on a ShoestringThe Hungry HypoFrench Country CottageLadybird LaneThe Answer is ChocolateTruly LovelyDelicate ConstructionSerenity NowSee Vanessa CraftHappy Hour ProjectsOne Artsy MamaSo You Think You're CraftyFinding Fabulous For LessIt's a Hodgepodge LifeTidy MomWhile He Was NappingCraftionaryFive Days... Five WaysDiana Rambles
Sundays: Under the Table and DreamingLambAroundFlamingo ToesHomemaker on a DimeThe Foley FamNifty Thrifty ThingsThe TablescaperMy 1929 CharmerIt's OverflowingCircle of FaithOur Sunday Best

Clay Ornaments

I've been wanting to make some stuff with clay and I've seen Rachel's awesome clay tutorials over at Lines Across, but when I spotted some of her recent ornaments, I decided to try them out.


And a less than an hour later, I had these...

(I did actually have some molds for flower cabochons that I bought a few months ago and you can see those up there on the cookie sheet.)

Using Rachel's tutorial here, I made these wreath ornaments...

I was not particularly thrilled about the clay bow I made, so I just made the second one without a bow and then glued on an actual red ribbon. 

And using Rachel's tutorial for candy cane cursive ornaments, I made these two...


I baked according to the package directions, added the strings, and voila! Fun new ornaments that I absolutely love. And now I'm a little obsessed with clay...

I'll be linking up to some of my favorite parties...

Tuesdays: New NostalgiaHope StudiosLadybug BlessingsFunky Polkadot GiraffeCoastal CharmA Bowl Full of LemonsNot Just a HousewifeA Diamond in the StuffhomeworkCrafty ConfessionsMe and My BoysSugar BeeChef in TrainingToday's Creative BlogHome Stories A to ZDIY by DesignTales of a Trophy WifeOur Delightful Homehomemade gingerIf It's Not BaroqueTime to SparkleInspiration ExchangeThe Blackberry VineSalt Tree SocialThe Scoop
Wednesdays: Creations By KaraSeven Thirty ThreeSugar and DotsSomeday CraftsLil LunaSew Much AdoWe Are That FamilyA Little TipsyMy Girlish WhimsPolka Dots on ParadeGinger Snap CraftsFrugally SustainableHandy Man Crafty WomanMade to Be a MommaJAQS StudioThe DIY DreamerFree Pretty ThingsWork It WednesdayLife InspiredPinterest Power PartyWork It WednesdayOrganize and Decorate EverythingMoonlight & Mason Jars
Thursdays: House of HepworthsA Glimpse InsideFireflies and JellybeansKatie's Nesting SpotBeyond the Picket FenceRhinestone BeagleSeven AliveThe 36th AvenueProject Stash Link Party52 Mantelslive. laugh. rowe.Artsy CornerDelightful OrderThe Train to CrazyMine for the MakingThe Taylor HouseThe Frugal GirlsNo Minimalist HereKeep Calm & Link UpCreate It ThursdayInspire Me PleaseThe Creative ConnectionThe Weekly Creative
Fridays: Fingerprints on the FridgeLink Party PaloozaThe Shabby NestSimply Sweet Home30 Handmade DaysThe Party BunchLovely Crafty HomeCatch As Catch CanNap Time Crafters504 MainMy Simple Home LifeSimply DesigningThe Picket FenceChic on a ShoestringThe Hungry HypoFrench Country CottageLadybird LaneThe Answer is ChocolateTruly LovelyDelicate ConstructionSerenity NowSee Vanessa CraftHappy Hour ProjectsOne Artsy MamaSo You Think You're CraftyFinding Fabulous For LessIt's a Hodgepodge LifeTidy MomWhile He Was NappingCraftionaryFive Days... Five WaysDiana Rambles

Sundays: Under the Table and DreamingLambAroundFlamingo ToesHomemaker on a DimeThe Foley FamNifty Thrifty ThingsThe TablescaperMy 1929 CharmerIt's OverflowingCircle of FaithOur Sunday Best

Glitter Ornaments

I know there are lots of tutorials for sparkly glitter-filled ornaments out there, but I just wanted to share some pics of the ones I made (mostly last year) and that are currently making our tree merry and bright!

First, a little reality check here... I managed to break not one, but two glass ornaments in this process... 

I did the Pine Sol/floor polish method (pour into ornament, add glitter, spin around, glue cap on the ornament) - you can find some tutorials from The Single Nester (complete with what glitter colors/brands were used for various ornaments), The Ornament Girl, and Greenbean's Crafterole.

I tried the glittering process with some plastic ornaments and they looked pretty good last year, but I don't think the sides held the glitter as well as the glass ones did (though my attempts to document this with photos made me look a little less than totally sane). 

I made a lot because I got pretty excited... I used the tiny glass bulbs, the medium glass and plastic ones, and the larger glass ones... 

A few close ups of some of my favorites on the tree last year.... I made lots of colors and we were a bit more color-focused with the tree this year (last year, the color theme was more ROYGBV while we focused on more green and blue and red this year). 

And my favorite color ever - sour apple/lime green here on this year's tree!

And the gold glitter ornament that Mr. Crafty Scientist agreed to let me put a ribbon on (he does not like the ribbon-topped ornaments).... 

I even put some into vases to sit on bookshelves that were in the background of our Chrismukkah card last year. Definitely simple, easy, quick, cheap, and the results are awesome - my favorite kind of project! 

What do you think? Have you tried out these no-mess glitter ornaments? 

I'll be linking up to some of my favorite parties...

Tuesdays: New NostalgiaHope StudiosTip JunkieLadybug BlessingsFunky Polkadot GiraffeCoastal CharmA Bowl Full of LemonsNot Just a HousewifeA Diamond in the StuffhomeworkCrafty ConfessionsMe and My BoysSugar BeeChef in TrainingToday's Creative BlogHome Stories A to ZDIY by DesignTales of a Trophy WifeOur Delightful Homehomemade gingerIf It's Not BaroqueTime to SparkleInspiration ExchangeThe Blackberry VineSalt Tree SocialThe Scoop


Wednesdays: Creations By KaraSeven Thirty ThreeSugar and DotsSomeday CraftsLil LunaSew Much AdoWe Are That FamilyA Little TipsyMy Girlish WhimsPolka Dots on ParadeGinger Snap CraftsFrugally SustainableHandy Man Crafty WomanMade to Be a MommaJAQS StudioThe DIY DreamerFree Pretty ThingsWork It WednesdayLife InspiredPinterest Power PartyWork It Wednesday
Organize and Decorate Everything


Thursdays: House of HepworthsA Glimpse InsideFireflies and JellybeansKatie's Nesting SpotBeyond the Picket FenceRhinestone BeagleSeven AliveThe 36th AvenueProject Stash Link Party52 Mantelslive. laugh. rowe.Artsy CornerDelightful OrderThe Train to CrazyMine for the MakingThe Taylor HouseThe Frugal GirlsNo Minimalist HereKeep Calm & Link UpCreate It ThursdayInspire Me PleaseThe Creative ConnectionThe Weekly Creative

Saturdays: Tutus & Tea PartiesFunky Junk InteriorsBe Different Act NormalTo Sew With LoveSix Sisters' StuffGingerbreadHomemaker in HeelsA Vision to RememberPositively SplendidToo Much TimeCrafty Moms ShareSerenity YouShaken TogetherClassy Clutter

Sundays: Under the Table and DreamingLambAroundFlamingo ToesHomemaker on a DimeThe Foley FamNifty Thrifty ThingsThe TablescaperMy 1929 CharmerIt's OverflowingCircle of FaithOur Sunday Best

300+ Glass Ornament Crafts!

UPDATE: My Linky Tools subscription expired, but I have re-posted all the links and added quite a few new ones here!


With the snow and icy weather, I've had some extra time on my hands... and we got our tree up early this year so the temptation to make new ornaments has been intense. So I thought I'd go overboard and round up lots of ideas for making glass ornaments your own. And this is what I found... a huge thanks to the talented bloggers who created so many amazing projects! I'm working on a few now and hopefully will have some pretty ones to share at some point...


I'll be linking up to some of my favorite parties...

Tuesdays: New NostalgiaHope StudiosTip JunkieLadybug BlessingsFunky Polkadot GiraffeCoastal CharmA Bowl Full of LemonsNot Just a HousewifeA Diamond in the StuffhomeworkCrafty ConfessionsMe and My BoysSugar BeeChef in TrainingToday's Creative BlogHome Stories A to ZDIY by DesignTales of a Trophy WifeOur Delightful Homehomemade gingerIf It's Not BaroqueTime to SparkleInspiration ExchangeThe Blackberry VineSalt Tree SocialThe Scoop


Wednesdays: Creations By KaraSeven Thirty ThreeSugar and DotsSomeday CraftsLil LunaSew Much AdoWe Are That FamilyA Little TipsyMy Girlish WhimsPolka Dots on ParadeGinger Snap CraftsFrugally SustainableHandy Man Crafty WomanMade to Be a MommaJAQS StudioThe DIY DreamerFree Pretty ThingsWork It WednesdayLife InspiredPinterest Power PartyWork It Wednesday
Organize and Decorate Everything


Thursdays: House of HepworthsA Glimpse InsideFireflies and JellybeansKatie's Nesting SpotBeyond the Picket FenceRhinestone BeagleSeven AliveThe 36th AvenueProject Stash Link Party52 Mantelslive. laugh. rowe.Artsy CornerDelightful OrderThe Train to CrazyMine for the MakingThe Taylor HouseThe Frugal GirlsNo Minimalist HereKeep Calm & Link UpCreate It ThursdayInspire Me PleaseThe Creative ConnectionThe Weekly Creative

Saturdays: Tutus & Tea PartiesFunky Junk InteriorsBe Different Act NormalTo Sew With LoveSix Sisters' StuffGingerbreadHomemaker in HeelsA Vision to RememberPositively SplendidToo Much TimeCrafty Moms ShareSerenity YouShaken TogetherClassy Clutter

Sundays: Under the Table and DreamingLambAroundFlamingo ToesHomemaker on a DimeThe Foley FamNifty Thrifty ThingsThe TablescaperMy 1929 CharmerIt's OverflowingCircle of FaithOur Sunday Best

Free Printable Gift Tracker

Mr. Crafty Scientist and I are working on getting together all our Chrismukkah gifts for friends and family... not the easiest task to manage. We've been using Excel spreadsheets and various scraps of paper, but then I decided to make this printable for us and I thought some of you might find it useful so I'm sharing it here.

Each page has room for recording the gifts you've purchased for two different people. You fill in the name for the person and then there are four columns. The gift you got goes in column A, where you got it from in column B (so you can find the receipt more easily if you need it), the price of the item in column C, and then the running total for how much you've spent on that person in column D (sort of like you keep a running tab in a checkbook). Then you can use that list to check off gifts you've wrapped, mailed, whatever...


Here's a little filled-in example...

I made two versions - just slightly different fonts. But you can download them here and here from Box.

I'd love to know if you use them and good luck with your gift purchasing and planning this holiday season!

I'll be linking up to some of my favorite parties...

Tuesdays: New NostalgiaHope StudiosTip JunkieLadybug BlessingsFunky Polkadot GiraffeCoastal CharmA Bowl Full of LemonsNot Just a HousewifeA Diamond in the StuffhomeworkCrafty ConfessionsMe and My BoysThe Kurtz CornerSugar BeeChef in TrainingToday's Creative BlogHome Stories A to ZDIY by DesignTales of a Trophy WifeOur Delightful Homehomemade gingerIf It's Not BaroqueTime to SparkleInspiration ExchangeThe Blackberry VineSalt Tree SocialThe Scoop


Wednesdays: Creations By KaraSeven Thirty ThreeSugar and DotsSomeday CraftsLil LunaSew Much AdoWe Are That FamilyA Little TipsyMy Girlish WhimsPolka Dots on ParadeGinger Snap CraftsFrugally SustainableHandy Man Crafty WomanClean & Scentsible, Made to Be a MommaJAQS StudioThe DIY DreamerFree Pretty ThingsWork It WednesdayLife InspiredPinterest Power PartyWork It Wednesday
Organize and Decorate Everything


Thursdays: House of HepworthsThe Shabby Creek CottageA Glimpse InsideFireflies and JellybeansKatie's Nesting SpotBeyond the Picket FenceRhinestone BeagleSuzy's Artsy-Craftsy SitcomSeven AliveThe 36th AvenueSouthern LovelyThe Crafty Blog StalkerProject Stash Link PartyCrafty Scrappy Happy52 Mantelslive. laugh. rowe.Artsy CornerDelightful OrderThe Train to CrazyMine for the MakingThe Taylor HouseThe Frugal GirlsNo Minimalist HereKeep Calm & Link UpCreate It ThursdayInspire Me PleaseThe Creative ConnectionThe Weekly Creative
Reasons to Skip the Housework

Saturdays: Tutus & Tea Parties & Here's to Handy AndyFunky Junk InteriorsBe Different Act NormalTo Sew With LoveSix Sisters' StuffGingerbreadHomemaker in HeelsA Vision to RememberPositively SplendidToo Much TimeCrafty Moms ShareSerenity YouShaken TogetherClassy Clutter

Sundays: Under the Table and DreamingLambAroundFlamingo ToesPetite HermineHomemaker on a DimeThe Foley FamNifty Thrifty ThingsThe TablescaperMy 1929 CharmerIt's OverflowingCircle of FaithOur Sunday Best
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