Tag Archives: inexpensive

Thoughtful Thursday – Last Minute Ideas To Save the (Holi)Day!

Grumpy Cat, meet Grumpy Dog. (slash Rudolph)

Put on that antler headband, and beat the bah-humbugs with our list of last minute holiday cheer!

Christmas is less than a week away, and yuletide is upon us. If you haven’t made your home festive (or you want to add some extra,) or if you just haven’t been able to come up with gifts for you friends, neighbors, or that relative that’s really hard to shop for, here are some last minute ideas to make your season merry and bright. (Click on the images for more info.)

Easy Decorations:

Simple, inexpensive, and elegant.


This has to be the prettiest, simplest tree I can imagine. Outline with lights and add paper cutouts of stars (or snowflakes!)

 all about the paper snowflakes

Speaking of snowflakes, here are some beautiful patterns to use!

20 minute crafter - make a giant star for less than five dollars - it is made from yard sticks.


Make an inexpensive outdoor star decoration with yard sticks.



Forego the can of fake snow, and break out your glue gun instead!

Free Printables:

Christmas Printable Freebie

Buddy the Elf printable.

Christmas printable



Holiday subway art printable.

Printable Christmas Banner!

“Noel” banner printable.

FREE Printable Christmas Gift Tags


Forget the expensive wrapping supplies. Use magazine or newspaper, plus these cute printable tags.

Quick Gifts:

I have to remember this for Christmas!!

An adorable gift for the women in your life!

Christmas on your stove. Made with Cinnamon sticks, dried lemon slices, dried orange slices, dried apple slices, cloves, nutmeg, allspice, bay leaf.  Great neighbor gift idea.

A natural home fragrance that smells like the holidays. A great gift for the neighbors!

DIY Lip Gloss using TWO ingredients!


What tween or teen girl wouldn’t love some pretty lip gloss in their stocking?

DIY Rosemary Mint Shave Cream


Whip up a big batch of this manly smelling shaving cream, and divide into small containers for a great gift. Add a straight razor (and print out a good how-to) for a gift the guys will use all year!

Of course, don’t forget our giveaway to enter to win this gift-able handmade necklace:


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Whatever Weekend – Local Arts & Crafts Shows

If you’re looking for fun, inexpensive, or family friendly events to check out in the Dallas/Fort Worth area this month, take a look at the wonderful festivals and arts and craft shows that are going on!

Local shows and festivals on Pinterest.

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Happy National Earth Month!

Happy Earth Month, everyone! I’m so glad to see that the earth-friendly living “trend” isn’t just a trend anymore, and that people are taking notice how much we affect the earth around us. A large part of our business is reusing and repurposing the old into new items to make a positive ecological impact.

The other day on my other blog, Chelsea, Like England, I wrote a post about easy upcycling projects you can do around the house as you do your spring cleaning.

I received an email today from Michaels with lists of re-useful projects, including fashion, furniture, decor, and even a block party idea to celebrate Earth Day. They’re also teaming up with American Forests to plant trees with just a simple text.

Ten for Tuesday Pledge

Just a few days ago, I reposted this pledge on our mission’s Facebook page, encouraging our students to pick up ten pieces of trash each Tuesday. This works anywhere, of course, not just on a college campus, and it’s a great way to celebrate Earth Month way beyond April.

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Welcome, Spring!

Finally, some warmer weather. It’s so nice to see and feel the sun. Around here, we relish in Spring, because by the time Summer gets here, it’s pretty miserable.

It’s time to list new things in the shop and sign up for any shows we’d like to participate in this season. The pop-up market in Fort Worth is coming to Arlington, so we may see what that’s all about! Things are busy here at the center where the hubs and I live, what with our new management, and all the seasonal activities coming up. The big event is our annual Spring Banquet to celebrate our students, and, to honor our new staff and all of the changes being made, I chose the theme “new beginnings.” For the past couple of years, it’s been my job to come up with a theme, buy and make all the decorations, and put them up the day of. Fortunately, we started a little sooner than we did in years past, so I have plenty of time to focus on making things look spiffy!

For our buffet table, I decided to create a display inspired by this tutorial: DollarStoreCrafts: Make A Floral Monogram. As you know, I love me some Dollar Tree, so I knew I would be able to find exactly what I needed to create what I had in mind. Here’s what I have so far:

005S-R-N- What does that spell?!?

… “Nothing, Chelsea, that spells nothing. What are you talking about?”

Never fear, “PIG” is here:


For you word scramble enthusiasts, you’ve already figured out that when you alternate the floral and moss letters, that spells “spring.” The moss letters are another dollar store creation. Right now, they have tons of moss on sale of different kinds. I chose the Reindeer Moss for it’s pretty green color, which matches our color palette of grassy green, yellow, white, and pops of red and blue.

It’s not “Make It Monday,” but I thought I’d go ahead and share how to make the moss letters:

What you need

Foam board

Moss (about one Dollar Tree package will cover the front and edges of a 12″ letter)

Blade (box cutter, exacto knife, etc.)

Hot glue gun

How to make it

1. I used some leftover foam board (that I also bought from the dollar store,) to cut out letters that were relatively the same height and width of my floral letters.  They measure about 12″ tall and 5″ wide. If you’re not confident in your free-handing skills, you can always print out letters in your desired font to create stencils to trace onto your foam board.

2. Once the letters are cut out, warm up your glue gun and open your package of moss. Begin separating the moss into chunks so that it’s easier to handle.

3. Spread glue over a small section of your letter, and quickly grab a chunk of moss and press down. You’ll find that there’s probably excess moss that doesn’t attach, but that’s OK. It’s better to have that extra to keep you from burning your fingers as you press down. Continue spreading glue on small sections of the top of your letter and adding moss.

4. Once you’ve covered your letter, tilt it and shake any excess moss off of it (as if you were working with glitter.) You may see that you have a couple of “bald” spots, in which case, just add a drop or two of glue, and use that excess moss to patch it.

5. Now it’s time to cover your edges. Use the same technique, this time, laying glue down the line of the edge for several inches, then covering with moss until you’ve covered the entire edge of the letter.

6. Depending on what you’re doing with your monogram or word, you may want to cover the back of the letter in moss as well. If you’ll be hanging the letter on a door or wall, it’s not necessary, but it gives it a nice, finished look.

7. Now you decide how to display it. You can glue a ribbon to the letter to hang it, glue a dowel or two to the back of the letter to “plant” it in a pot or vase, or leave it as-is to prop against a nook in your home.

There you have it! I’ll be sure to post pictures of my finished “spring” display once it’s done, and some pictures of the rest of the decorations for the banquet.

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Make It Monday – Paperclip “Chandelier” Project Result

Finally! The paperclip chandelier project is complete:

Colored paperclips and faux multicolored crystals.

The project took about half a day to make. If I had been working from a pattern, it probably wouldn’t have taken as long, but I decided to be brave and go without one. I altered the project by using multicolored paperclips and adding “crystals” – because you can’t have a chandelier without crystals! I eyeballed the size I needed, made the wire hoops, and started linking the paperclips in a triangle/diamond pattern. The hubs came home to a colorful surprise – and he really likes it. Which is good, considering it’s above the desk he uses in the kitchen. Since I already had the steel wire, this project cost me less than $2 in paperclips; well worth the investment.

This is the third and final of the first group of top 3 projects I picked last month. I’m so excited to finish the list and move on to new craft projects! Next Monday, I’ll list my next 3 projects to complete.

What are your top 3 project picks?

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Whatever Weekend – Feeding The Addiction

Ok, I confess, I’m addicted …

to dollar stores.

I don’t have a hard time not shopping at large retailers like Target, Walmart, or big-name clothing stores, but dollar stores? They’re my weak spot. So, coming from a gal who likes to thrift and make things rather than buy them, but obviously has issues when it comes to $1 tags, you can imagine how elated I was when a friend recommended dollarstorecrafts.com!

To be honest, I do try to buy things from the ol’ DS to use for supplies for craft projects, like the Wizard Of Oz trunk or treat decorations, or the halloween wreath I made. It’s nice to finally get some inspiration, though, for those things that I want to buy but can’t justify with a purpose. My friend (and other friends, if they like!) will be crafting it up on the cheap in the very near future, and I can’t wait.

In reference to another obsession of mine, Tom and I visited the Log Cabin Village in Fort Worth, followed by a very hot lunch at the Botanic Gardens down the street. The obsession here is inexpensive and entertaining dates. One of our first dates together involved the Wendy’s dollar menu, a park, and touring the outside of my old elementary school. We’ve been on a roll ever since!

Outside the log cabin where my grandfather was born! It made an extra special date to share some family history with my hubby.We both love it when art and function meet. This butterfly chair was amazing, and luckily there was a kind stranger nearby who offered to take our pic.

The normal routine starts again tomorrow. The center opens for the summer, Tom starts summer school, and Mom and I commence our regularly scheduled doctor visits and brainstorming sessions! Just in time for 100 degree weather.

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