July 7, 2012

Sandy Beach Picture Frame

I love pictures. They are little cameos of memories that don’t take up a ton of space. Pictures can be piled into books, scrap booked or framed. Unique picture frames can also be created out of objects that are too big or awkward to scrapbook.

 I am a little ashamed to say that at 19 months of age my son went to the beach for the first time. Living in Southern California, there is really no excuse for him to have not been yet. Oh sure, we’ve walked down the pier or along the sand on our way to lunch or to meet friends at the coffee shop, but he has not had an official “beach day”. My dear friend and her 5 month old daughter also came along for her first beach day. To commemorate the big event I decided to create some unique picture frames; one for me and one for my friend.

I bought 2 simple wood frames from Michael's for $1 apiece. I took the frames to the beach along with Modge Podge (MP) and a foam brush that could be thrown away (easier than trying to find a sink to clean out a nicer brush). I spread the MP generously and as evenly as possible and then pressed the frame gently but firmly into the sand. Take several minutes and enjoy the beachy sunshine. Pull up your frame and do a second layer of MP and sand.

At home, spray the frame generously with a spray fixative to keep it from shedding too much sand into your house. Arrange your shells, rocks, seaweed, driftwood, etc. on your “sanded” frame. Hot glue the objects to the frame. If you would like, bring some sand home with you from the beach and use it to quickly sprinkle over the spots where the hot glue squeezes out from under your objects. Maybe it’s just me, but it drives me nuts when I can see dried hot glue when a project’s done. You have to do it while the glue is still hot though! You can also use clear nail polish on those shells and rocks that are so much more colorful when they are wet. 

 While these are not the prettiest shells that the beach had to offer, they are the ones that my son deemed interesting enough to pick up himself. This would be such a fun project for older kids to do from a special vacation. Let them take some plastic bags to collect objects to take home and fix to frames. Bring home sand from the river, acorns from the camp ground, or rocks from the hike. It will be so much fun for them to look back and remember those places that they were found.

July 2, 2012

Mud Run Shirts

So my sister, Hollywood, and I did the World Famous Camp Pendleton Mud Run last month. In preparation for this momentous occasion we decided that cute customized crop tops died hot pink were in order. Most people would be loading up on water and sleep the night before a 10k obstacle course, but not us! 

Kristin found an idea on the internet for dying t-shirts and leaving a design with Elmer's Glue. It very highly recommended the blue GEL School Glue. I went to 5 different stores before I finally found it at Staples for around $3 ( I can't find the reciept). I also bought 2 white tank tops from WalMart for $5 each, and a package of pink Rit Dye for $2.29 from JoAnns. 

First, write or draw what you want on your shirt with the Elmer's. We put a piece of cardboard in the shirt to keep the front from sticking to the back. Use a paint brush to work the glue into the fabric and crispify your design. Use a hairdryer to speed up the dry time.

Second, dye the shirts according to the package. We used the bucket method with the logical thinking that is won't work the glue out of the fabric.

Third, throw the shirts into the washing machine and wash according to the dye packaging. Don't forget to clean your washer afterwards to prevent ruining your next load of clothes. Dry!

We decided to crop our tops since we had been training since January to become fit enough to complete this run and our tummies are looking pretty darn good. Definitly the best I've looked since having my son a year and a half ago!

Check out those arms!

Poking my sister, Hollywood.

Vicious Mud Warriors!