December 20, 2014

Say Hello to the Holidays: Movie Night Neighbor Gifts

Happy Saturday, friends! I wanted to give a HUGE thank you to all the lovely ladies who contributed to the holiday series over the past couple months.  I've got three words for you:  you. are. awesome.  Seriously!!! From recipes, to fashion, to family traditions...I loved reading every post and they certainly put me in the holiday spirit!

In case you missed any of the posts, you can check them all out here:

And here's one more post to close out the series.  Thanks to everyone who's followed along...I hope you've enjoyed it as much as I have!


If you're looking for an easy, last minute Christmas gift for you children's classmates, friends--or maybe the kids in your neighborhood...then you're in the right place!  After designing the cards, it took me all of 10 minutes to make a dozen of these cute little packages.

I can assure you I'm not creative enough to come up with these Redbox printable gifts on my own--but after a friend pinned this tutorial on Pinterest, I was excited to give them my own flair!

So basically, the concept is simple...popcorn, a cute note, and a movie code = instant family movie night. Now that Arden is to the age where she actually gets excited about movies (that doesn't mean she'll sit still for them!), I'm looking forward to those nights where we break out the sleeping bags and camp out on the living room floor with a good movie and junk food. I'm all about healthy-eating, but I think junk food makes for better memories ;)

So here's all you need to do...

1. Download the printable here.

2. Print on cardstock and attach to microwaveable popcorn bag with washi tape, twine, etc.

3. Purchase as many red box codes as needed. You can buy them in bundles and have them sent to yourself. In other words, you're the giver and the receiver--then you'll get an email with all the codes, which you can the add to the printables.

4. Deliver to friends, family, neighbors, etc. Arden got a kick out of giving them to her playgroup and dance class friends...and she especially loved playing Santa and dropping some off in other friends' mailboxes.

5. Take all that time you saved and go enjoy Christmas with your family :)

Have a great weekend, friends!  

December 18, 2014

Say Hello to the Holidays: Brittany's Ornament Gift Card Holders

Hello Sunflower State of Mind readers, I'm Brittany and I blog about my family's life at Just Another Day in Paradise - I'm excited to be guest blogging for Vanessa today!! She is one of my best friends in real life and I love her blog, her family/kids (almost the exact same age as mine), her decorating style and party planning and most of all- that she's back in Kansas City and we are neighbors.  I can't wait for our kids to grow up together and seriously cannot believe how stinking cute baby Nash is and how fast he's growing!!!  

If you are anything like me...the week before Christmas rolls around and I'm going through my list for the last minute gifts and stocking stuffers I still need to buy and it always hits me- TEACHER GIFTS!!  And then I ask myself how I could forget AGAIN!  You would think after 3 years of being responsible for these I would get my act together.

Well never fear my friends- I have an easy DIY way to package the favorite teacher gift of all- a gift card!!!  Follow along and then give it a try - a personalized (and homemade- you will get some extra bonus points there) apple ornament gift card holder.  

It's not too hard to make, easy to modify and I like it because it personalized the gift card a bit but doesn't give them another cup or mug (my parents are both in education and it amazes me all the cups and mugs they get!).  You just need a few supplies to get started.


Red, green and brown felt (Walmart sells felt in 8.5x11 pieces if you want a quick pick up)
Needles and red thread
Glue gun & glue
Hemp or any type of ribbon/string

Easy step by step:

1. Print off a template for an apple shape or free hand your own (I'm not much of an artist- I used this template from Pinterest and just used one of the big apples)

2. Fold over your red felt, or put 2 red pieces together and trace the apple shape and then cut - you should have 2 apple pieces now!

3. Cut one of the apples about 1/4 of the way down from the top- this is your little pocket on the back that the gift card will sit in.

4. String your needle with the red thread and do some long stitches (nothing fancy here folks) and make sure you tie a knot or loop the first stitch so it stays. What I did was just tie a knot at the end of my cut thread, thread the needle through and right before I got to the knot, I put the needle through the 2 strings and it made a little knot.  See below if you are confused!

5. Stitch away. I made mine long and kind of loose because it's faster and I think looks better!

6. cut out a leaf and longer stem from your green and brown felt.

7. Cut a piece of your hemp/strong/ribbon you are using- this was about 8 inches long because this is how the ornament will hang on the tree.

8. Get out your hot glue gun and glue your lead first, then your ornament hanger string and then the brown stem (add some more glue on top of the string).

9. Personalize as you wish! I just added my kid's teacher's names on the front with the "Ms" and then wrote a simple note and the year on the back .

10. Stick your gift card in and deliver to the well deserving teachers!

Believe it or not- I finished nine of these babies in just under an hour, so it does go fast when making in bulk.  The most time consuming part is for sure the stitching around the apple- which if you are on a time crunch, skip that and just hot glue that too.  I really only used the string to make it look pretty. I threw these in a little bag with some Christmas themed popcorn and called it a day!  Since these really aren't Christmas themed (except for the fact they are an ornament), you could use these for back to school, teacher appreciation, whatever the case.

Hope this gives you a last minute, easy idea for teacher gifts.  I have done lots of different ones over the years for the holidays and teacher appreciation day- but I love these that are personal small gifts but they can get what they really want with a gift card!!

Happy crafting friends and an early Merry Christmas!!

December 16, 2014

Say Hello to the Holidays: Emily's Festive Kids Rooms

Hello, Sunflower State of Mind Readers! I'm Emily and I blog at Dear Owen! Although, I hate to admit my little blog has definitely been a bit neglected since the birth of my second little one, I LOVE blogging but, I fall short... a lot! I do, however have an Etsy store, Dear Owen & Co. that I run with my business partner ( aka Mom ) where we design creative goods for children's rooms and nurseries. It's safe to say I am a design junkie, or maybe just a Pinterest addict/dreamer. Since having two kids I have become completely in love with children's design, which is why I thought I'd share a bit of my addiction with all of you today! ;) Adding a little festiveness to your child's room is such a fun way to get your little one excited for the upcoming holidays! Christmas most definitely is my favorite holiday to decorate for and it's safe to say my kids favorite, too. I've rounded up some ideas to help you bring in some Christmas Cheer. (and I apologize in advance to the #boymoms out there. Since this is my first Christmas with a little girl I'm sharing lots of girly goodness!)


 I am all about here are a few ideas that will add a special touch to your babes room but not any headache. Switch out your child's every day sheet for a festive Christmas sheet or pillowcase. Hang a special stocking in their room and add fresh greenery or maybe even a little tulle. There are so many cute pillow options on Etsy. This gold "Merry" one is a personal favorite. Of course, books are a great way to add a little holiday fun as well, leave them on display, in a basket, or even stacked on a shelf. I love this simple vignette, complete with gold bowls and ornaments, a bottle brush tree, and a simple art print. String a gold sparkly banner and you're all set.

And here are some really great rooms/decor that will leave you totally inspired! (I hope :)







 Can you handle all the Christmas goodness?! If you want to join me in my addiction you can follow my Christmas Pinterest board.   Thanks so much for having me Vanessa, I am elated for you and your precious new family of FOUR!   Merry Christmas, Friends!