"You are so creative!" I have heard that phrase constantly since I was little. DIY, Refashioning, Crafting, Sewing, Woodworking. I love it all! Now I have a place to keep my favorite projects or ideas organized and share them with you!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012


Just last week I saw someone pin a photo of their caboodle from the 80's. Then I looked through some photos to see if I could find a photo of the one I had. No such luck, but I did find a photo that someone had taken of kids craft supplies in a caboodle!


This is just what my little artist needed. Seriously it is the perfect thing! Like a craft supply tackle box!

 Then on a trip to Goodwill today to pick up 30 Beanie Babies,(yes, 30, that is another story) I saw it!!!

The exact style of Caboodle I had when I was a pre-teen. I think I got it when I was 12, so I believe it was a 90's caboodle but totally all Caboodle. In all paradoxes it could have very well been mine, maybe, possibly. I mean I live in the same town so who knows right?
 I knew I needed it but not for me of course.

For my 6 year old girl. She has had art supplies she won in the PBS Kids Go Writers and Illustrators Contest,  just sitting in her desk upstairs for almost a year now untouched. She has been using our bins of old crayons and markers because they are more easily accessible, and in the main living area. But now the little brothers (2 and 4) are into using the supplies as well and the markers don't always get capped right and the crayons sometimes get broken. This left my little artist with tools that were a bit sub-par to her standards.

 So I decided to put my daughters own supplies in her very own portable art kit. Things she can use without supervision since she is a big girl. Glue, scissors and tape that she can use anytime without having to ask first, and markers and crayons that are not broken.

I told her it was her early Valentine's gift from her mommy.
She was thrilled with the idea of having all the supplies in one spot, easy accessible and easy to put away.

Linking up here:
For the Kids Friday

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Colorful Snow Fort

Snow + Fort + Water + Food Coloring+ Spray Bottles+ Frozen Water Balloons = Colorful Snow Fort.

Next try this!

Put some food coloring in a baloon.

Fill with water and tie off.

Place in freezer our outside in the snow until they are frozen solid. (may take more than 12 hours)

Then use them to decorate your snow fort.

Linking up here:
For the Kids Friday

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Monday, January 23, 2012

Happy Lunar (Korean) New Year! Make a Yut Nori Game.

Its that time again! Time to eat duk gook and get a year older! Yep that is correct the Koreans believe that if you eat a bowl of this special soup at midnight on New Years it is so good it ages you a year. I am not sure I want to eat duk gook in that case.

While I am not making duck gook this year, we decided on a little Bee Bim Bop for dinner tonight.
We make the Linda Sue Park version with Spinach Sprouts and Carrots. Skinny Strips of marinated beef, and fried egg ribbons on top. Bee Bim Bop means Mixed up Rice. So you mix everything together in your bowl and eat it all up.

 Then we have to hurry off to Taekwondo. I guess no one told the instructors at Taekwondo it is supposed to be a holiday. :)

Taekwando is after all the official national martial art for Korea. My daughter and I have been enjoying a free month of Taekwondo lessons at a local studio. We have been attending three days a week, this is our second week and we have been enjoying it.
Lunar New Year, more well known as Chinese New Year, is celebrated not only in China but in Korea and a few other Asian countries as well. While each country might celebrate a bit differently with different traditions and activities there are also many similarities.
The Koreans still have the same animal symbols for each year. This year is the year of the Dragon. Considered to be the most lucky of all the years.

My son was born in Korea and we celebrate Lunar New year at home usually with some home made Korean food. We dress in traditional Korean clothing called Hanbok, well everyone except my husband who doesn't have one. Here is a photo of our family last year on Lunar New Year.

Here is a Hanbok I made for my daughter last year. Click here to read about that.

Here are my boys this year!
 My youngest just got a new haircut and looks so much older now then in last years photo.  (wipe tear) His first hanbok still fits him. He got it from his foster mother in Korea. He will be ready for a new one next year, so I had a friend of mine buy him a new one when she was visiting Korea this year. It actually fits my older son so he was excited to wear it this year.

We do the traditional bowing to the parents that they do in Korean culture. This is a traditional sign of respect and it is an exciting thing for the kids because traditionally if they have been good that year they get "lucky money" from their parents. In our house we don't give money but we do instead each child is given a little gift that is from Korea. It might be a book, or a toy, just something small, but a present none the less, which makes the whole traditional bowing worth it to them.

If you want to learn how to do the traditional Korean Bow for Lunar New Year. I suggest watching this short video.

This year we decided to go to my daughter's classroom to share about Lunar New Year. We brought along the hanboks and did a taekwando demonstration. We will told them about Korea and some of the traditions they have for Lunar New Year.

 My daughter was most excited to share that in Korea, everyone turns one year older at the same time at Lunar New Year. Everyone in their class at school is the same age at the same time in Korea.  So a baby can be born the day before Lunar New year but will turn ONE at midnight the next night just like a baby who was born the day after the previous Lunar News Year. Everyone born in the same calendar year is always the same age. Fun and interesting huh?

I decided to teach them a traditional Korean Board Game. Yut Nori. Here is our game we purchased in Korea.

You play the game by gently tossing four sticks in the air onto the ground. One side of each stick is flat. You count how many flat sides are up and that is how many spaces you can move your game pieces. Traditionally you have four pieces you move around the board, but I simplified the games I made so that the first graders could play. You move around the outside of the board trying to get to the HOME space. If you land on a corner or in the middle of the board at the end of your move. You can choose to switch directions at that point. This can give you a short cut by going through the middle making you get home sooner than the other players. Also no two players cannot occupy the same space on the board at the end of their move, so if someone lands on a space you are on, you must start over from the beginning.

It is a game for all ages. It can involve a lot of strategy for older players by having multiple choices of pieces to move. And even little toddlers can be a part of the came by tossing the sticks.

I know we won't have time to play it in class and we only have one board so I made up some little game boards out of cereal box cardboard and for the sticks I marked one side of 4 Popsicle sticks so it has a blank side and a side with the words Yut Nori on it.

I added 4 different colored buttons so 4 kids can play at once on each board. and put all the pieces in a Ziploc with simple directions written on it.

 Now when they stay in for inside recess this week because it is too cold to go out. They will have a new game to play in their classroom.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Music Room / Sitting Room Before and After

Better late than never!
 I have been planning on doing a post on my music room redo since I finished it early last spring, but life had other plans. So here is my before photo.

When we moved in, our old furniture went into this front room of our house. We didn't spend much time in here. The train table spent about a year in here, yet again no one ever played with that much either. It seemed like a room the kids would drag stuff to leave it on the ground and that was about it aside from the occasional Wii game. I decided I wanted a grown up space, so the Wii room moved to a spare bedroom upstairs and the old Salvation Army couch I bought for my college dorm room traveled to the unfinished basement.

The other wall was were we had our upright piano. I wanted to keep this there on this level since my daughter takes lessons.


We have had other furniture arrangements in this room using our old stuff. It was ok but I had never actually had the chance to decorate a room the way I wanted it without having to compromise with my husband's taste, which consists of over sized leather furniture placed on outside walls in order to use up the least amount of floor space and geometric shapes and very neutral colors.

I was excited to have the green light to make it what I wanted it to be.
Yet I still had to make the feel of the room fit with the rest of our home and I would have to not go totally crazy. My husband still has to look at it everyday, and it has to be neutral enough to last years, and not get outdated too easily. 


We painted the room a darker warmer color. With a blue gray accent color on the fireplace. We think it makes the natural architecture of the corner pop.


The most controversial piece of furniture in the room was the Coffee Table, I LOVE it, and my husband really does not. I love the industrial look of the wheels, he cannot stand it. But being the good husband he is he let me have it. We use it to play boardgames and for a place to work on puzzles instead of using the dinning room table. This way we don't have to worry about picking the games up when it is time for dinner. The little dark leather cubes we had before and they work perfect for place to sit when playing.

The chairs we got online at Target. On sale of course and we have been super happy with them. They were much better quality than we expected them to be and were a great price.

The couch was a very difficult piece to choose. I really liked the look of the one I choose from Slumberland but it was a fold out sleeper, which we didn't need, or need to pay for. Lucky for us there was a returned one which had a spot on it. The tiny spot came off with water and a damp cloth, I can't believe someone didn't just wipe it off. But because the spot was there they had it marked WAY down from the floor cost which made it OK for it to be a fold out price wise even if we didn't need it to be. 

I also like the dark leather storage bench that we had that matched the two small cube seats we have by our coffee table. This adds additional seating to the room fills an empty wall and serves as storage for puzzles, games and other small toys the kids may bring to this room.

And here the piano wall is not much different, except I moved the lamp and TV tray out and now there is room for my guitar and case to be stored next to the piano. As you can see my old window is currently empty. It was the main reason for not writing this post for a year. I have decided I do enjoy it empty too, but if you want you can pretend the other photos that were in there are still there.

The artwork on the wall was also a piece we already owned. It was bought on clearance at JCP a few years ago. It works well with the space but if I had my choice of anything for the space I wish I could find THIS piece of artwork. I came across the photo on Pinterest months after I finished my room and saw many similarities in the color scheme and coffee table. I have not been able to locate the artwork,  and if I could, I probably wouldn't pay what they wanted for it. So it may just be a future DIY project of mine although I don't think I will like what I make as much as the original.

Now I have my space. I can curl up and read a book, watch cars drive by outside, or snowflakes fall. It is a great comfy place for songwriting with my band mates, and playing games with the family. The room makes me feel calm, which I LOVE. I don't always get to feel calm in the midst of three children.