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Secret Santa-ed

‘What did you get for Christmas?’ ‘A house’ ‘Well merry Christmas to you indeed’ am I right?

It’s a little scattered here 

  
How did we get so many chairs, all the furniture we own consists of chairs  

 luckily I planned ahead a little bit so I’ve got a few posts I can share with you 

So lots of people are likely doing their secret this coming week and I thought I would show you what I did for my secret Santa. 

My secret Santa wanted gift cards (boring) or ear rings (I can work with that) 
Most secret Santa gifts are limited to around $10 to $20. You can’t get much for that anymore. And to me small presents are all about the presentation so along with some $8 earnings from H&M I got $2 worth of craft supplies to make a little ear ring holder/ornament. 

You’ll need two laser cut frames like I used in one of my very first posts found here. 

  
Some paint, lace and some ribbon or twine for hanging.

  
First I painted my frames using a stippling technique to give them some texture. 

  
Then I just used hot glue to glue lace to the back side of one of the frames. I also layered some tulle in there simply because my lace had very large holes and the tulle would secure ear rings better.

  
Then I spot glued a small length of ribbon onto the back of the frame to serve as a hangar. 

  
Finally I coated the back of both frames with wood glue and sandwiched the lace and ribbon in between the two by gluing the frames back to back and carefully lining them up.

  
I clamped the layers together with clothes pins while it dried 

  
After about one hour I had a lovely way to gift ear rings and money left over in my Santa budget for other goodies. 

  
  

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Like Tiny Snowflakes 

Mr. Smith and I are getting ready to buy a house and we get to move our hodge podge of stuff into it. Unfortunately that hodge podge does not include any Christmas decorations. 

  
So we are going to make some of our own this year. Here is a quick one I did over the weekend.

  
I started with one of these laser cut wooden snow flakes. Similar to my laser cut frames I painted a while ago and just as cheap.

  
Then I actually used washi tape to decorate something instead of as makeshift painters tape like I usually do. 

  
After covering the whole thing I just used an exacto knife to cut out the holes. 

  
So when I said quick that was a relative statement.

  
 It was something interesting to do while Mr. Smith played Fallout 4 in the background though. 

  
When it was all done I used some of the guilding wax that made an appearance last week to jazz it up a bit. 

  
Repeat on the other side, seal with clear acrylic, tie a ribbon to hang and you’re all set. 

  

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Free!

I am going to attempt the impossible. I set out to make a completely free diy project.

  
And by free I mean by using leftover “junk” around the house.

  
Let’s start with some bottle caps, 10 to be exact. Grab my trustee nail polish and pick out a couple of contrasting colors. Paint 5 bottle caps one color 5 another.

  
A couple more colors and some Xs and Os, you can probably see where this is headed.

  
Next grab a little linen sack or something similar. This one came from some novelty gum Mr. Smith just had to have. Use a fabric pen or paint or just a sharpie to put on the grid.

  
Once everything is dry you can toss it all in the bag and voila you have an on the go conflict resolution implement for the kiddos, or frustration for the adults when they figure out how to always end up in a draw. 

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No Sleep Til New Years

Thank you Beastie Boys for allowing that song to mock me through this holiday season. First it was no sleep til Christmas then it was on to New Year’s. Hopefully normal programing will resume after this and Brooklyn can go on being the star of the show. I’m sure anyone who works in retail can relate.

As an indication of how sleep deprived and scatter brained I’ve been I documented this entire project and then failed to document the end result. I’ve done that with multiple projects lately, but oh well, at least you get an idea of where I was going with it.

So I’ve done a few homemade gifts this year. This one is certainly not Christmas centric. In fact it makes an excellent get well soon gift as it’s great for aching muscles and a stuffy head.

Bath Salts by the way, is what I’m talking about. I’m not trying to be cryptic it’s just the lack of sleep catching up with me again.

They are pretty easy to make and there isn’t really a rhyme or reason to them. You simply need magnesium sulfate crystals (aka Epsom salt) and some essential oils. You can add whatever you like from here. A little baking soda ( a little goes a long way), some sea salt, dried herbs or flowers, the possibilities are endless.

For my crushed mint bath salt, which is my favorite for the hectic and illness prone holiday time of year I stick with these ingredients.

Epsom salts, Baking soda, Peppermint essential oil, Clove essential oil, Eucalyptus essential oil, and Dried crushed mint leaves

First I measure the amount of salts I will need. I just do this by filling the container I will be storing or giving them away in. I then add around a table spoon of baking soda per 2 cups of salts. Then, as per my usual very precise measuring methods, I add a decent amount of peppermint, a dash of eucalyptus and a smattering of clove oil. Then just a sprinkle of crushed mint just to give the stark white salt a little interest. After that it’s just a matter of stirring the whole thing up thoroughly and attempting to carefully get it back into its container.

I use quite a bit of oil in my salts only because that way you don’t need very much of the salt per bath but it’s entirely up to you how strong or weak you make them.

After placing the salts back in their allotted container (usually a mason jar I have lying around) I like to spruce it up with a bit of washi tape or ribbon tape around the lid. I’ll also put a bow and tag with information on how much should be used in a bath.

This is where my photographic evidence fails me.

I also did a jar this year where I placed a bracelet around the jar to spruce it up. It made a nice way to present both the salts and the bracelet.

And thank goodness its all done with. Don’t get me wrong I love the holidays and look forward to them every year. Especially the part where I get to make goodies for people. But now I am simply ready for a good night’s rest.