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Showing posts from October, 2018

DIY Suitcase House for Travelling Elves

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Today is the last day of the "All Wrapped Up" blog series for the year!  I really enjoyed it this year and found it much easier to do than last year when I did it during November.  The best part is that I still haven't run out of topics to write about!  I know I'll be doing at least a few more posts this year before Christmas.  But first, my magnum opus... an Elf Suitcase Dollhouse!



I have been planning this travelling elf house for over a year!  I had the wood case picked out since last December and waited all year until I bought it.  The wall pieces are held in only by their own friction, so I can easily remodel it next year (haha) or replace broken parts as needed.

I created the structures with 1/8 inch foam boards.  The left side is only 1 inch deep, so the the build-in needed to be only 3/4" deep.  The kitchen area isn't quite as detailed as I had hoped to make if the inset was deeper, but I'm pleased with it.  I started with the back piece and mea…

Tasty Food Miniatures Your Elf Can Make and You Can Eat

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Miniature Foods, especially party foods are very popular lately.  If you search Pinterest, you can find miniature corn dogs, hamburger sliders, cotton candy, and more.  I have been thinking a lot about our Elf on the Shelf and how neat it would be if she could make miniature foods that we could actually eat!  This is what I've found....




Festive Mini Cakes // Snackworks
Layers of vanilla wafers and jam make up these tiny treats.  Dip them in melted chocolate for an easy miniature layer cake that's perfect for elves.

Gingerbread House // Uncommon Designs Online
I am in love with this adorable miniature gingerbread house!  What a sweet, petite treat to go with coffee or cocoa.  Decorate them elaborately, or leave them simply adorable.

Mini Cake Pops // Sweet Cheeks Tasty Treats
These cake pops were part of a whole elf party.  See the full spread by clicking on the link.

Caramel Apple Bites // My Litter
Although, we typically think of caramel apples as a Halloween food, these tiny sw…

200+ Good Deeds for Christmas

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Christmas Fun with Buddy the Elf

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Buddy the Elf.  What's Your Favorite Color?
Christmas would not be the same without Buddy the Elf.  It might not even be Halloween yet, but I'm already playing Christmas music (did you know there was an Elf Musical), doing elf crafts, and a few days away from finishing up my All Wrapped Up pre-Christmas series.  I love the Elf movie, and wanted to share my affinity for elf culture with a blog post all about the Elf.



Elf Syrup Bottle Label // Bugaboo City
Elf-Sized Movie Night Printables // In Our Pond
Buddy Costume // A Little Moore Blog
Elf Hat Party Mix // The Lady Behind the Curtain
Printable Elf-ism Cards // Over the Big Moon
Elf Spaghetti Cookies // Delish



Clausometer // Ugly Christmas Sweater Party
Elf Diet Quote // Halegrafx
Elf Party Ideas // Twin Dragonfly Designs
Paper Plate Elf // I Heart Crafty Things
Pre-Chewed Gum Game // Where Love Starts
Buddy the Elf Knit Pattern // Ravelry






Visit all the Posts in this Series by Clicking on the Picture.

















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Unique Ways to Give Gift Cards to Kids

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Everyone loves the convenience of giving gift cards.  It's a super easy way to show someone you care.  It allows you to give a present, while allowing the other person to pick out what they want to buy.  Popular options include Starbucks (put it in a to-go cup), Amazon, or another restaurant.

More commonly, especially with children, gift cards are used to set aside money for a specific outing or experience.  For example, if the family is heading to a Disney park in the new year, the child may receive gift card to allow he or she to buy their own souvenirs.  You could just hand the gift card to the kid or put it in a cards, but that would be lame.  Here are some great ideas for unique ways to give gift cards to kids.  Click on the red links to visit the product pages.


Build-A-Bear
This gift guide was inspired by a conversation that I had with my sister recently.  She is planning on giving one of my children an outing to Build-a-Bear, and was wondering how to wrap it so that the gif…

Embrace the Cuteness with Calico Critters

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Dragonfly (age 7) enjoys watching doll unboxing shows in Youtube and has become very interested in Calico Critters recently.  The toys combine classic doll house and family play with adorable anthropomorphic animals.  For kids who don't enjoy doll play, Calico Critters can be a good option.  Dragonfly has a bunch of CC stuff on her Christmas list, so I thought it would be a good time to make a gift guide with all the cuteness.  Click on any of the red links to add the toys to your Christmas list.




The Calico Critter toys would be nothing without the actual critter families.  The adults and kids have the basic five points of articulation (head, arms, legs) while the babies only have one (head).  All of the animals are 1:24 scale and fit the accessories, which means their not scaled for each other (aka the mice and the elephants are the same size).  The animal families break into three basic groups: woodland animals, pets, and wild creatures.  Dragonfly (age 7) is hoping that they&#…

18 Alternatives to the Elf on the Shelf

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The Elf on the Shelf is famous (infamous?) for his nightly antics during December.  His official story is that he spies on children for Santa and leaves reports for them to mend their ways.  Some people find him a bit creepy.  Others don't like how common he is and how he can be found in every store around Christmas time.  Some parents want to focus more on the religious part of the holidays, which others just wish for a storyline they can write themselves.  Whatever your reasons for hating on the elf, this is the blog post for you!  Click the red links to learn more about each idea.




Si the Christmas Elf- I laughed aloud when I saw this Duck Dynasty inspired elf doll.  He's not a spy for Santa, but he does have lots of redneck advice to share.

Shepherd on the Search- The shepherd moves around your house and does different prescribed things every day that point to Scripture and introduce aspects of the Nativity.  The line has also expanded into Christmas.

Angel on Assignment- Thi…

Elf-Sized Mini Books

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I'm addicted at all things ELF!  I have about five printable projects and ten blog posts in the works.  Even though Christmas has passed, I can't stop working on Elf stuff!

One of my current projects is a suitcase house for our Elf, so I've been working on decorations and accessories for it.  I had a lot of fun making the mini books.  I made some shaped books that can cover cardboard to make books that don't open.  I also made some slightly over-sized cookbooks with "real" recipes for winter Elf baking.  Lastly, there are two groups of coordinated, uniform books for a bookshelf.    I've already started assembling the books, and the kids think they're so fun.  These tiny books would be perfect addition to your Elf library or reading scene.




For assembly instructions, I recommend checking out My Froggy Stuff's book making tutorial video.  In case you haven't heard the news, I love Froggy!  She's super creative, almost everything I do is insp…

Best Play Food for the Toy Kitchen

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Growing up, I loved playing with my toy kitchen!  It was so awesome to be able to cook up anything I wanted without the limits of resources, time, ingredients, or ability.  I think every child should get some time playing pretend before their grown.  Companies like Melissa and Doug make it very easy to find play food options that will engage your child's imagination and storytelling skills.  I think I write about play food every few months, but here's another collection.  For this year's All Wrapped Up series, I'm focusing on the best play food for the toy kitchen!

Children's Books about Christmas Elves

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I've been sick all week and it's been tough to keep up with my self-imposed 31-day blogging blitz.  I had hoped to be further along with the crafting and have more to post.  As I was working on elf housing and elf crafts and thinking about my favorite Elf movie, I decided to do a post on Elf children's books.  I wrote a post about Nativity books last year and one about Christmas classics a few weeks ago, but I haven't done anything with Santa or Elves.  Click the red links to add some new elf books to add to your Christmas collection.



Elfie the Elf- A lonely girl meets a elf and begins a heart-warming tale of friendship and learning to accept our differences.  Originally written in 1990 and only just now published, this book will soon become a classic.

Memoirs of an Elf- Take a look at a day in the life of a Christmas elf as he helps Santa deliver presents on Christmas Eve.  When a wiggly surprise shows up at the North Pole, who will save the day?  Contains math and wri…