Explore Your Artsy and Adventurous Side Indoors

When schools first closed, I realized I needed to keep up with school lessons and I wanted us to stay somewhat active. I bought a few art supplies and balls for us to play with! I made a few lessons for him to do each day and even incorporated little games where we tossed a ball to each other. Since we’ve been home for months, I’ve been adding games and trying to stay motivated with everything. We gathered items to explore your artsy and adventurous side indoors! 

Explore Your Artsy and Adventurous Side Indoors
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Since we prefer to stay home, which works since it’s keeping us safe with COVID, I wanted my son to try more art projects and find ways to be creative! 

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Quarantine Halloween: Making The Best Of It With Family

Halloween is looking mighty different this year due to the pandemic. In my town, trick-or-treating is not an option since we are in the red with COVID cases. At the very last minute, I decided to throw my family a small Quarantine Halloween party just for the 8 of us!

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Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet

Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet

Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet

Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet

You ever get down in the dumps? So blah that none of your regular pick-me-ups are effective at elevating your mood? I don’t get that way very often. I have several trusty hobbies that I enjoy very much, and though two of my three children are adults now I’m still pretty busy with my youngest child, doing stuff around the house, and all of our pets.

Even the Coronavirus currently circulating around the world and all the news about that and the changes to daily routines that have come from it haven’t really gotten me down too badly. I’m a homebody by nature, so staying home a little more than usual hasn’t been a hardship.

I hope that statement doesn’t come off glib, I don’t mean it to be because I know there are a lot of people for whom this situation has created great hardships and I’m not immune to those either despite my statement. My family has older, immune-compromised members for which we are taking on extra duties to allow them to try to avoid infection, and for those of us who work outside the home precautions are taken to reduce the likelihood of infection.

I am not immune to stress. None of us are. And this year has been a doozy. The coronavirus, the brutal election cycle, the protests across the country, and all the other crazy stuff going on has just taken a toll on all of us.

I sometimes like to pick up cute flowers from the grocery store while shopping to display in our home. It’s a relatively inexpensive way to liven up our living space. One such occasion that I used to do double duty in this area was for my youngest daughter’s Sweet 16 birthday celebration. I purchased some beautiful fragrant white hyacinths and lavender to create some pretty flower arrangements for her party. Then afterward I used them paired with a fun St. Patrick’s Day garland to decorate the living room mantle. So fun! And they smelled SO GOOD!

mantle floral/holiday arrangement
mantle floral/holiday arrangement
mantle floral/holiday arrangement

I will often take larger holiday bouquets and break them down after some plants in it start to wilt or die and continue to use the parts that are still healthy-looking to make different arrangements using a variety of different sized vases and other pretty containers I have around the house. It extends the fun for as long as possible and makes the expense worth it to me.

Well, one day recently I was just very blah. Nothing seemed interesting enough to spend time doing. I had been reading books like crazy and needed a break before starting a new one. I’d been working on a knitted afghan for my Mom (a Christmas gift later this year) and needed a break from that, as well. I didn’t feel like baking or making jam and had just finished binge watching all the Grey’s Anatomy available on Netflix.

Sometimes, inspiration can come so unexpectedly. I simply decided to step outside my house to wander to the end of the driveway to get the mail. As I neared the end of the driveway I noticed some flowering weeds along the tree lining and thought to myself that even those were clearly weeds that they were pretty anyway. Then I noticed some small yellow flowers (also likely weeds) that looked sort-of like daisies. And THEN, I noticed some branches that had bright red berries on them. Something stirred within me at the sweet simple beauty of them. I collected the mail and returned to the kitchen to sort through it.

But, my thoughts kept returning to those bright, sunshiny yellow blooms and the red berries. Even throughout other chores I was doing, I kept finding myself thinking about them and how pretty they were, even if they were weeds.

So, I grabbed a pair of scissors and headed back out there to snip a handful of them. And this pretty bouquet is what resulted from my efforts. I’m sure the blossoms are probably toxic weeds, so I placed the bouquet outdoors on the table of our deck.

Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet

And you know what? Who cares if they are toxic weeds? This activity fed my soul, lifted my spirits, and for the several days that they lasted it was a beautiful sight every time I stepped out on the deck to see such vibrant colors there in one of my favorite spaces. I didn’t have to leave my property or spend even one red cent and it gave me such joy!

Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet
Flowering Weed And Berries Fall Bouquet

I call this my Flowering Weed & Berries Fall Bouquet. Pretty fantastic!

If you’re looking for some fun and easy ways to do a little Fall decorating, check out these other fun ways I’ve decorated our home for the cooler season.

What has brought you joy during this difficult year? Please share, we can all use a little good right now!

3 Simple And Thoughtful Gifts For Just About Anyone

Sometimes the simplest gifts are the most thoughtful. Instead of breaking the bank on a fancy present, look for gifts that provide comfort and can even quiet the mind.

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The Gift of Books

Books make a wonderful gift; especially for someone who loves to read. ‘The Mind Remedy‘ by Ruth Williams is a compilation of 20 beautiful and simple projects. Many of these crafts are very familiar to my own childhood; from the ‘trouble dolls‘, ‘God’s eye‘ and the ‘dream catcher

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Time To Put Down The Screens And Bring Back Family Game Night!

Board games are an amazing tool to have in your home. Dedicating an evening to family game night has many benefits. Not only can board games be educational; they can teach strategy, how to be a team player and reduce stress. With virtual learning in full effect, our kids are on the screen more than ever and family bonding has an ever growing gap. Board games have been known to bring families closer together creating healthier family relationships.

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Keeping Your Little One’s Busy In Quarantine

Keeping Your Little One's Busy In Quarantine
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I don’t think I ever expected for the situation with the pandemic to ever exist, (of course I guess one never does.) Now comes the question, with four little children under the age of eight, how are you keeping your little one’s busy in quarantine? Keep reading to find out so fun ways we are staying busy and keeping safe while staying at home.

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DIY Moisturizing Hand Sanitizer Gel + Free Printable

We created our very own DIY Moisturizing Hand Sanitizer Gel after trying to find basic essentials, such as toilet paper, hand soap, cleaning products, and more. I am thankful we have hand sanitizer available but I realize not everyone does! We wanted a hand sanitizer that everyone can make! 

DIY Moisturizing Hand Sanitizer Gel + Free Printable

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

How is quarantine life treating you? There are times when I feel stressed out and overwhelmed. For a while, I was worried about finding toilet paper and liquid hand soap. I usually stock up and have at least one or two refill bottles of liquid hand soap and a package of toilet paper on hand. Over the last few weeks, I missed out on buying toilet paper and I kicked myself each time! 

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Spark Your Child’s Imagination With Hands On Science Experiments At Home

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Distant Learning Through STEM

To inspire children through science , sparking lifelong imagination and curiosity

Mad Science

Recent events around the world have left us living with uncertainty. Between working from home and finding unique ways to entertain and teach our children have left many parents overwhelmed and stressed. Thankfully there are many digital programs and subscription services to not only entertain our children during this precarious time, but educate them as well through distant learning.

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Gifts for Your Little Love on Valentine’s Day

Gifts for Your Littlest Love on Valentine's Day
Beauty Brite Disclosure

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and I know as a Mom, I am left scrambling for ideas on what to put in their little bags. Yes, I am one of those Moms. The ones who like to acknowledge each little holiday with an added something to make the day special. My husband claims I am spoiling them BUT to each their own. My babies won’t be babies forever. If you’re looking for a few ideas on what to put into your little Valentine’s bag, then you’ve come to the right spot! 

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The Most Fun I’ve Had While Crafting

The Most Fun I’ve Had While Crafting - Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit (Crafting Fun)
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Crafting Fun Crafting Fun Crafting Fun Crafting Fun Crafting Fun Crafting Fun Crafting Fun Crafting Fun Crafting Fun Crafting Fun Crafting Fun Crafting Fun Crafting Fun

The Most Fun I’ve Had While Crafting The Most Fun I’ve Had While Crafting The Most Fun I’ve Had While Crafting The Most Fun I’ve Had While CraftingI’m an avid crafter. Primarily, my medium of choice is yarn, but I’ve been known to dabble in stamping, simple painting, beginner beading and jewelry, thread crafts like embroidery and cross stitch, card making, etc. Years ago, I was on a little scrapbooking kick. Also, one year my mother-in-law helped me sew a poodle skirt for my oldest daughter to wear as part of her Halloween costume. Basically, I’m game to try anything crafty — that’s the takeaway here.

The newest craft company to come to my attention is Joone Crafts. Joone offers some of the most colorful, interesting crafts! Paper crafts like cutting, embroidery, and coloring. Cloth crafts like tea towels and tote bags that you can paint on to decorate them. Even a Macramé Jewelry kit and a few Teracotta Tile Coaster crafts that look super interesting to me.

The Most Fun I’ve Had While Crafting - Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit

I am finding the designs of Joone Crafts very pleasing and the color palettes bright and cheerful. I’m working on making a Paper Embroidery Pencil Case and a Paper Embroidery Notebook for my daughters as part of their Christmas gifts this year.

The Most Fun I’ve Had While Crafting - Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit

The pencil case will be for my younger daughter. She’s an artist, so it will be paired with some sketchbooks and sketching pencils. She is always drawing, so hopefully this pencil case will be a good way for her to organize and take her sketching pencils along wherever her creativity takes her.

My older daughter is a writer, so the notebook will be paired with some fun colored pens. She loves to journal, write lists, and use notebooks to gather and analyze her thoughts or make future plans. She’s gonna think this is awesome!

I am having fun working on these crafts, but I know they’d also enjoy many of the crafting kits available from Joone, as well. So, I’m tucking this company in my back pocket (i.e. adding to an ongoing gift idea list that I keep in my phone’s notepad app) for their birthdays this coming year. Now I just have to decide whether I want to choose some kits for them, or get them a Joone gift card so that they can choose for themselves.

I love this Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit so much! Here’s why. First of all the kit comes with two items to embroider, and you get to choose them. In each kit you can choose to receive two notebooks (choose black covers with blank pages, or kraft covers with lined pages) OR two Kraft pencil cases OR one each Kraft cover lined notebook and Kraft pencil case.

But, that’s just the beginning! Once you decide which items you want in your kit, you will need to choose a colorway:

Crafting Fun

Spring: peaches and greens

Autumn: purples and oranges

Winter: blues and cream

For my kit, I chose the option of one Kraft cover notebook and a Kraft pencil case in the Winter colorway, since these are going to be Christmas gifts. I love all three colorways, though! So, it was really hard to choose one over the others.

Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit

This kit is COMPLETE!!! Seriously … it comes with everything you need to complete the project. Literally the only thing you need to have at home already is a pair of scissors.

Here’s what comes in this kit:

Project materials:

  • (2) notebooks, 5″ x 8″ or (2) pencil cases or (1) notebook + (1) pencil case
  • (5) skeins DMC cotton embroidery floss
  • (5) plastic floss bobbins
  • (1-2) lengths elastic cord (pencil case kits only)

Foundation materials – reusable with future paper embroidery projects:

  • (1) Clover straight tailor’s awl
  • (1) tape measure
  • (1) piece Eco-fi felt
  • (1) 100% recycled cardboard pad
  • (1) needle threader
  • (2) size-22 tapestry needles
  • (1) bobbin MT washi tape
  • (1) pot pH neutral glue (to seal your stitches)
  • (1) glue brush
  • (1) instruction booklet
  • (1) set paper punching patterns with beginner, intermediate & advanced designs (Note: combo kits include 2 sets of punching patterns – one for notebooks and one for pencil cases)
  • (1) design examples booklet (Note: combo kits include 2 design examples booklets – one for notebooks and one for pencil cases)

Bonus materials:

  • (1) 100% recycled cardboard project tray
  • (1) cotton drawstring project bag
Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit

I don’t really know how not to multi-task, so while working on this project I had my laptop in front of me so that I could catch up on some political news programs. Sometimes while I’m crafting I’ll watch TV shows on YouTube TV on my iPad, also, or listen to an audiobook. But, today, it’s political news.

Joone has quite literally thought of everything when designing this project kit. I’ve never done this type of project before. But, the instructions and design templates are so inclusive and complete that I embarked on this project with full confidence that I could actually complete it without messing it up.

And I think it’s really an intuitive idea for them to include a drawstring project bag in the kit. I will often take a knitting or crochet project with me when I leave home to work on while waiting for my kids at school or sports functions or to work on in the waiting room of a doctor’s office if they have an appointment. I think it’s fantastic that I can take this project along just as easily when I’m on-the-go! The drawstring bag can even be used as a gift bag, just put the completed project (or the uncompleted kit itself) inside the bag, cinch it, and maybe tie some ribbon around the top and add a gift tag … presto! Gift giving ready!

Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit - embroidery thread
Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit - embroidery thread

The punching patterns that are included to choose from for the embroidery design on the cover of your items are of three levels: Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced. Depending on which level you choose, it will include a different number of the leaf design elements to be punched and then embroidered onto the notebook and/or pencil case.

The Most Fun I’ve Had While Crafting - Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit
The Most Fun I’ve Had While Crafting - Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit

Even though this is the first experience I have had with this project type, I felt completely comfortable choosing the Advanced design template.

Seriously, if you are a crafter or if you know a crafter you’d like to give a crafting-related gift to, you have to take a look at all the awesome crafting kit options that are available from Joone

The Most Fun I’ve Had While Crafting - Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit - Clover Punching Awl
Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit – Clover Punching Awl

I had a really great time learning a new craft skill. And I love that I now have some tools to make more items using these tools and skills in the future. You can get additional supplies (notebooks, pencil cases, tea towels, tote bags, and other items) on their own without re-purchasing full kits. This is great since some of the items that come in the kits like the punching awl, measuring tape and needles are re-usable and would not need to be purchased again. I really can’t wait to try out the Macrame Jewelry Kit and the Fabric Stamping Kit one of these days. 

The Most Fun I’ve Had While Crafting - Joone Crafts Paper Embroidery Foundations Kit

I’ve finished the pencil case and am working on the notebook now. After the holidays when things slow down I will be doing a little internet research to learn more about paper embroidery to find other design patterns and see what other things I can do this kind of embroidery on!

Which Joone crafting kit would you love to try? Or which one would you love to gift to a friend or a loved one?