Blog Design Updates

If you're reading this in a feed reader, I'd love for you to click over to the blog itself so you can check out some of the changes I've made around here... they're mostly small design tweaks, but I like to tell you when I make them so I can get feedback. So let me know what you think of the changes below (note that they don't link to anything - these are just the images so you can see what they look like even if you don't click over to the blog itself).

I changed up the header and now most of my social media buttons are in there...

I pared down the blog to using mostly just 3 fonts so the Welcome message/banner at the top of the page is different...

...As are the post type buttons (the ones that say recipes, guest posts, etc.). I also repaired the links those buttons go to so none of them are like you searched for a post-type. Instead, they all go to the page with the linky list of that kind of post on that one page.

My profile in the sidebar has a pretty font and new, moderately more science-y picture.

And I changed up the sidebar labels to add a little chevron and keep my fonts consistent. Here's an example...

I'm working on some more ideas and playing with the idea of restructuring the posts and the way they are divided to make them even easier to search, but I don't know that that really helps anyone at this point so it's all just stuff I'm thinking about.

What do you think? Any recommended changes?

Interchangeable Snowflake Wreath

As you might have noticed, I've enjoyed making small attachments for my interchangeable wreath (like this one for Valentine's Day, one for St. Patrick's Day, another for July 4th, another with purple and orange polka dots, and this one with pinwheels for the warmer months) so that I can change it up for the seasons (and not have to store another wreath form). I decided it was time for a new winter version this week when we got lots and lots of snow...


If you look at the Valentine's Day wreath post here, you can see how I made the velcro attachment parts - I followed the same process here, but did a terrible job taking pictures of the process. Basically, I used my Silhouette Cameo to cut out some cardstock snowflake shapes, traced those onto felt, cut out my felt snowflakes, sewed on beads when I wanted to, and sewed the snowflakes together with embroidery floss and a whipstitch (I think). Easy to handle while you watch some Netflix or DVR...


Another close up look at some of my snowflakes...

And a last look at the beaded snowflakes. If you have questions, feel free to ask. They took some time, but were honestly really easy to make!

And if you needed another reason to make your own interchangeable wreath, this is now the sixth version/attachment I've made and shown you on the blog and this one might be my new favorite... 


I'll be linking up to some of my fave parties...
Tuesdays: New NostalgiaHope StudiosLadybug BlessingsFunky Polkadot GiraffeCoastal CharmA Bowl Full of LemonsNot Just a HousewifeA Diamond in the StuffhomeworkCrafty ConfessionsSugar BeeChef in TrainingToday's Creative BlogHome Stories A to ZDIY by DesignTales of a Trophy WifeOur Delightful Homehomemade gingerTime 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: A Glimpse InsideFireflies and JellybeansBeyond the Picket FenceRhinestone BeagleProject Stash52 Mantelslive. laugh. rowe.Artsy CornerDelightful OrderThe Train to CrazyMine for the MakingThe Taylor HouseThe Frugal GirlsNo Minimalist HereThe Creative ConnectionCreate It ThursdayThe Weekly Creative
Fridays: Link 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 RamblesCreativity Unleashed
Sundays: Under the Table and DreamingLambAroundFlamingo ToesThe Foley FamNifty Thrifty ThingsThe TablescaperMy 1929 CharmerIt's OverflowingCircle of FaithOur Sunday Best

Geometric Paint Chip Art

I made this project a very long time ago... some of these were for my sister's birthday in 2011 or so! But I never got great pictures and I messed up the project and had to re-do a few times and so I hesitated to share them, but I've been inspired by some of the posts from bloggers about not being perfect and not sharing stuff unless it's pin-worthy or pinteresting (some of my faves are this one from Life Begins at Thirty, Right? and All Things Thrifty and Saige Wisdom). New year, more posting and sharing... that's the goal for now. Please excuse the super-old watermarks on some of the photos...


This particular project was heavily inspired by Tristin from Two Girls Being Crafty and her tutorial here. You've probably seen it because it's seriously gorgeous. Visit her tutorial to see how she made the leaf template and for a real tutorial.

I started out making a version with blues and browns/yellows and another with blues and greens because those are the colors my sister wanted for her wall art. I made two versions - one with smaller leaf shapes for the more rectangular shape canvas and larger leaf shapes for the one that was more square (so that the pattern fits in evenly).


Unfortunately, some of the leaves just didn't end up looking right - I had to sort of trim some down to make the pattern fit or really tilt the leaf at a weird diagonal. I figured this out before covering it all in Mod Podge so I just pulled off the leaves and repainted the canvases in white.

The next time, I measured out the squares where the leaves should go (so if the leaf was 2 inches long, I lightly pencil-lined in 2-inch squares and the leaf shape would go across the square). I had used up a lot of the paint chips in blues, browns, greens, etc. so one of them ended up being multi-colored. (I had trimmed the larger leaves so those couldn't be re-used, but the smaller ones were okay to use again.)

Then I erased the pencil lines and covered it with Mod Podge.

And the re-done blue-heavy versions.
Another look...



I think Mr. Crafty Scientist and I ended up keeping the larger multi-colored version while my sister got the original mostly blue ones. They actually looked pretty good in the end after I measured them. Some day I might even attempt to make them again!

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 ConfessionsSugar BeeChef in TrainingToday's Creative BlogHome Stories A to ZDIY by DesignTales of a Trophy WifeOur Delightful Homehomemade gingerTime 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: A Glimpse InsideFireflies and JellybeansBeyond the Picket FenceRhinestone BeagleProject Stash52 Mantelslive. laugh. rowe.Artsy CornerDelightful OrderThe Train to CrazyMine for the MakingThe Taylor HouseThe Frugal GirlsNo Minimalist HereThe Creative ConnectionCreate It ThursdayThe Weekly Creative
Fridays: Link 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 RamblesCreativity Unleashed
Sundays: Under the Table and DreamingLambAroundFlamingo ToesThe Foley FamNifty Thrifty ThingsThe TablescaperMy 1929 CharmerIt's OverflowingCircle of FaithOur Sunday Best

Free Updated Bills Tracker Printable

Last year, I shared a free printable for how Mr. Crafty Scientist and I track our bills and spending and make sure we're up to date on everything... that printable had "2013" at the top and was only supposed to cover that year so it's time for new charts and printables. You could just white out the year on that one, but that doesn't seem like much fun.

I have to confess that I actually made quite a few new pages for Mr. Crafty Scientist's mom because she loved our binder so much (that was one of her Chrismukkah presents this year and she loved it). She loves purple and I'm a fan of green so this year the printables are green and purple... and I'll do my best to share more of the others I made. For now, here's the big tracker - undated and perfect for use year after year...

Download the purple version here for free!

Download the green version here for free!

Please remember that these are for personal use only (so please don't try to sell them or re-post as your own). I'd love to see your binders and how you stay organized!

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 ConfessionsSugar BeeChef in TrainingToday's Creative BlogHome Stories A to ZDIY by DesignTales of a Trophy WifeOur Delightful Homehomemade gingerTime 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: A Glimpse InsideFireflies and JellybeansBeyond the Picket FenceRhinestone BeagleProject Stash52 Mantelslive. laugh. rowe.Artsy CornerDelightful OrderThe Train to CrazyMine for the MakingThe Taylor HouseThe Frugal GirlsNo Minimalist HereThe Creative ConnectionCreate It ThursdayThe Weekly Creative
Fridays: Link 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, Creativity Unleashed
Sundays: Under the Table and DreamingLambAroundFlamingo ToesThe Foley FamNifty Thrifty ThingsThe TablescaperMy 1929 CharmerIt's OverflowingCircle of FaithOur Sunday Best

Free Printable 2014 Calendars and Planners


I was looking at awesome free printable 2014 calendars and planners offered by talented graphic designers and bloggers out there to make my own planner for the year and I realized other people might be interested in what I came up with (and then you don't have to fall victim to the time vampire that is Pinterest and blogs)... a big thanks to the talented gals who made these awesome printables!




I'll be sharing this roundup at 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

Organizing Instruction Manuals

Happy 2014 everyone! I figured I'd start the year off with some organizing I've done because January always inspires me to think about cleaning up and getting more organized. I have a few older projects to share because Mr. Crafty Scientist and I did a great job with getting the house organized and cleaned up last year (the best I've ever done, for sure), but I've hesitated to post some stuff because the pictures leave a little to be desired... but sunlight just isn't happening when I'm not at work so I'm sharing some stuff now!


My first attempt at organizing all the assembly instructions and manuals for larger purchases involved collecting everything and setting it up in a binder. I revised that system and I'll show you what we use now (in the picture above too) after I show you this first one...


I basically hole-punched all the small warranty and assembly instructions and manuals and put them into a big 3-ring binder. I organized into sections like phones, computers, furniture, small electronics, luggage and jewelry (they were grouped together because I barely had anything for either), etc. and made cardstock dividers to label and separate them...


Then I added some plastic page protectors and added smaller receipts or other papers that wouldn't fit neatly into the binder - roughly one page protector per section so some had several things in them. I was worried about smaller papers falling out of the notebook, but still needed to be able to get to them, so I added some velcro to the tops of the page protectors so that they would seal up and stay closed when I wanted them to do so.


I tied some twine around the binder because it was so big and I just wanted it to stay closed and then I added some pretty labels to the front and the spine of the binder and there we had it!

However, as you might have guessed, this thing was a monster that threatened to collapse under its own weight most of the time and yet we still needed to add more. So I looked around Pinterest and the internet for new ideas and came up with the expandable file folder plan.


Basically, I got one expandable file folder and added Silhouette vinyl labels to them and and started filing. I mostly filed everything by type - shelving, lamps, phone, etc. though I did add some sections that are room specific - bathrooms, office, living room, closets. You can see the categories I used here.


And here...


We've actually managed to use this system for the better part of a year and it's been really nice to have somewhere to put new information when we got new stuff rather than letting it collect in the junk drawer or on the front of the fridge. Now Mr. Crafty Scientist and I both know what should go where and it's easy to handle. I haven't taken apart my old binder, but that might happen at some point soon (as well as fixing up the labels with my label maker!) to complete the organization process.

What do you think? Are there any big organizing projects you plan to tackle this year? Or ones you're still using from last year?

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
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