Monday, March 31, 2014

DIY: Vintage Disney Phone Case

Hello lovely readers!  Today we have a super cool and fairly easy Disney DIY project.  I'm apologizing in advance for the poor quality of these photos; since I was working on my new phone, had to take the pics with the old iPhone and it is just not the same!

Here is what we are making today:

First, print out a picture of your chosen vintage Disney image (click here if you need some ideas).  I first measured my phone, and then made the image about a half an inch longer on each side.  I printed my image on actual photo paper, which makes the quality better.  Then I traced my phone on a piece of card stock.

And used the template to cut out the phone shape from my picture.  As you can see, the edges are a little rough, but you can't tell once you get everything put together.

I put the image into my clear phone case...

...and then used an Xacto knife to cut out the camera hole.

And there you have it!  A totally custom and adorable vintage Disney cell phone case!  Totally love it, and I'm even thinking about making some holiday/season specific ones!

Friday, March 28, 2014

How to Have Fun at Disneyland While Pregnant

It's time for the second edition of my "How to Have Fun at Disneyland" series...(if you're not knocked up and don't have kids, check out the first edition, How to Have Fun at Disneyland as an Adult!)

I’ll admit, before discovering I was with child, I would roll my eyes whenever I saw pregnant women at Disneyland.  I mean, what is the point, ladies?  You can’t go on any of the cool rides, all you do is waddle around all day, and more often than not, it’s a day of baking in the Southern California sunshine.

And then I got knocked up.  Is there really any way that I, a self-proclaimed Disney addict, could go nine months without visiting my favorite place in the whole world?  Um, no.  I had to majorly adjust my Disney expectations (bye-bye California Adventure beer cart), but I knew I would find a way to enjoy myself.  And what have I discovered?  You can have fun at Disneyland, even while pregnant!  Just follow these easy steps:

1.        Know going in that the “fun” rides are off limits.  Space Mountain and Tower of Terror are just not going to happen in your pregnant state.  But that’s okay!  There are still lots of other cool rides you can enjoy.  In California Adventure, check out Toy Story Midway Mania and Soarin’ Over California.  If you’re a fan of Ariel, The Little Mermaid ride is also a cute option.  Across the way at Disneyland, you can rock many of the classics like Pirates of the Caribbean and Haunted Mansion.  Jungle Cruise is always a crowd pleaser, and you can still battle the evil Dr. Zurg on my personal favorite, Buzz Lightyear Astroblasters.

2.       Come prepared.  First and foremost, wear comfortable shoes.  I used to dress for cuteness at the parks, but now I wear good sturdy socks and my running shoes.  You will not make it through the day wearing my former go to’s like flip flops and Chucks.  Second, bring lots of water with you.  You will need it, no matter what the weather is like (and more often than not, it is hot).  With all the walking around, it is super important to stay hydrated and you don’t want to get stuck paying the Disney standard of $3 for a bottle of water.  You also might want to bring snacks to munch on in between meals.

 The New Balance Disney themed running shoe collection; I need them all!

3.       Know where the bathrooms are located.  If you are not a frequent visitor to the parks, make sure you get a park map and note the locations of the bathrooms.  There are ample locations throughout the park, so if you know where to look, you are never more than a few minutes away.  But there is nothing worse than feeling that pressure in your tummy and having no idea where to find relief.

4.       Take lots of breaks.  There are tons of places in both parks where you can sit and relax and enjoy one of my favorite aspects of the Disneyland experience: people watching.  At California Adventure, I like to grab a waterside table at the Cove Bar.  Overlooking the pier, the bar gives you a great view of the Ferris wheel, and depending on your timing, you may even be able to catch one of the many water shows that takes place during the day (and don’t worry, even though it’s technically a bar, there are plenty of non-alcoholic options available).  If you’re at the Happiest Place on Earth, grab a seat at the Tomorrowland Terrace and listen to some live music.  Or kick up your feet and watch some of the awesome live entertainment at the Fantasyland Theater or the new Princess Fantasy Faire.

5.       Enjoy the food.  Churros and pretzels and Dole Whip, oh my!  Disneyland is home to some of the yummiest junk food on the block, why not use your expecting state as an excuse to indulge in some tasty goodies?  If you are sticking with the healthy stuff, there are many places to get fresh fruit (and pickles!), but don’t be afraid to stop by the Ghiradelli Soda Fountain and Chocolate Shop in California Adventure for dessert.  You deserve it!

6.       Do some baby shopping.  There are enough cute kids clothes in the stores at the parks to make even the hardest of hearts squeal with delight.  Feel free to poke around and maybe even purchase a onesie or two…or ten.

Whether this is your first pregnancy or your tenth, there is no need to let your unborn child keep you from the awesomeness that awaits and Disneyland and California Adventure.  Be prepared, set your expectations, and most of all, enjoy your day at the Happiest Place on Earth.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Personal Post: In a Perfect World...

In a perfect world, a dream world, blogging would be my job.  I love writing, I love crafting, I love sharing my knowledge and experiences with others.  When I sit down for a day of blogging, I feel accomplished.  I feel productive.  I feel like my creativity is being put to good use.

That's not to say I don't feel that way when teaching, because I definitely have those moments in the classroom too.  Actually, typically those moments come when I am watching my theater students perform, but that happens about three times a year.  And while I am endlessly proud of them, it doesn't often feel like my accomplishment.  As I consider my options for next year, I can't help but wish that blogging was a way to supplement my income so that I could teach part time and blog to make up for my lost salary.  Right now that's not an option, and that's okay, but in a perfect world...

I find myself torn when it comes to blogging.  This blog deals with all of the things I am passionate about right now: my home, my family, my baby, my crafts.  I also have a Disney blog that has barely been touched since I first started posting there.  Disney is something I am definitely passionate about, so I made the decision to stop posting there and start posting my Disney info here.  You will note the "Everything Disney" tab at the top of this blog, which is a new addition.  I don't want to stop blogging about Disney since I love it and have many ideas to share, but having a separate blog (that makes three all together) doesn't make sense for me at this point.  I also still have my wedding blog, Pink Cupcake Weddings, which has been around for almost four years now and was my first blogging endeavor.  It can be hard for me to come up with relevant ideas for PCW as I am so far removed from wedding planning these days, but it has always been my most popular blog, and if ever I were going to make money blogging, it would be there.  In fact, looking at my stats for the past couple of months, I am experiencing traffic similar to the rates of other blogs that I know bring in some sort of income for their writers.  So maybe if I keep at it, someday that will be me.

What I don't want to do is blog for the sake of blogging.  I hate when I publish a post I don't feel good about, and I try not to do that very often.  I want my posts on both of my blogs to be worthy of my readers.  No one wants to read filler or fluff.  So what happens now?  I will blog when I feel like I have something worthy to share.  You may see an influx of Disney themed posts over the next couple weeks since I have some ready that I haven't shared with my Bees readers yet.  If you stop by PCW you will see some new posts when inspiration strikes.  And maybe one of these days I will bring in some income from one of these blogs.  I am realistic about those chances (aka slim to none) but I will keep on dreaming.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

DIY: Photo Mats Using Silhouette

I have finally had some opportunities to start messing around with my Silhouette , which I got for Christmas (thanks Mom!).  One thing I am terrible at is cutting in a straight line, which is a handy skill to have, but luckily the Silhouette takes away the need for the skill!  I used my Silhouette to create these photo mats out of scrapbook paper for some quotes I am framing and using in Baby B's nursery.

Creating this look was super easy.  I first plugged in the outer rectangle measurements in my Silhouette software, and then added in another smaller rectangle using the measurements of the size of my printable.  I sent this super cute paper through the machine, and voila, a perfectly cut and shaped photo mat!  This is a quote I personally love for obvious reasons, so I typed it out in Microsoft Publisher and printed it on regular white paper.  Boring on its own, but when you add in the mat, super cute!

These darling printables I downloaded for free here.   Again, printed them on regular white paper.  They were cute on their own, but they needed the mat in order to fill the frames I had purchased (from Ikea).  I used the same process as the first time around, this time cutting two mats.  Added them into the frames, and suddenly, super cute and ready to hang signs!

It was a little tricky at first to get the mats to lay flat, but once I put the whole thing together, everything stayed in place perfectly.  I am excited to be finishing up some of the decor elements I will be using in the nursery, but at the same time anxious to put it all together.  Hopefully we can get some of the bigger items checked off our To Do list soon so the fun stuff can begin!

***This post uses affiliate links.  If you click these links and purchase the products, I will receive a small commission.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

I Survived Second Trimester!

Well, I've officially entered my third and final trimester of pregnancy and let me tell you, it is a relief to be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel!  Apparently for some other very lucky pregnant women, second trimester is a dream, but for me, not so much.  Between the heartburn and the no sleep and the achy bones, it was a rough couple of months.  Sadly, I don't think third trimester is going to be any better on those fronts, but at least I know I am only weeks away from meeting my little guy.  Plus I have a lot to look forward to in the next couple months: two baby showers, a final baby free vacation over Spring Break, and lots of cool crafts and projects to complete the nursery.  I'm looking forward to sharing the remainder of my pregnancy with you (not in too much detail of course).  For you moms out there, any advice on how to hang in till the end?

Sunday, March 16, 2014

DIY Mobile Inspiration

One of the projects I am working on for the nursery is a DIY mobile.  I, of course, took to Pinterest for some inspiration and found tons of different ideas.  These are the ones that I loved the most!  (Click pic for original source, all pics via Pinterest.)[0]=tags&includes[1]=title&filter[0]=handmade&filter[1]=children

Mine is going to be a combination of many of these ideas.  I've already punched out the shapes, now I'm getting prepped for the construction!  Tutorial and pics coming soon!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Craft Organization

One of my main challenges in getting organized has always been my craft supplies.  In our two bedroom (plus closet-sized office space) home, I have never had a place that I can comfortably sit and do my crafts, which means I end up using the dining room table as my office.  Which works fine as a space, but means that I tend to leave supplies and crafts-in-progress all over the place and it gets annoying.  The solution was to create storage space in the dining room, which we did with the use of this hand-painted buffet/bookcase combo:

(Sorry about the crappy photos.  Cloudy weather=no natural light=yucky pics.)

The buffet portion of the unit offers lots of hidden storage options.  The drawers and cabinets hold everything from sponge brushes to felt to plain onesies and tote bags.  The bookcase portion required a little more finesse as it can be seen.  The top shelf holds two baskets, which contain all kinds of supplies:

And I used this clear vase to store my pretty washi tape rolls:

I use this decorative storage box (from Ikea) to hold my fabric paints:

On  the bottom shelf of the bookcase and the two shelves of the buffet, I have baskets to hold the supplies for crafts I am currently working on.  I can stash unfinished projects in there until I am ready to work on them again.

I still sometimes have my projects left on the dining room table, but it is much easier to keep everything clean and organized with this extra storage.  Plus, it is pretty and fun to look at!

Monday, March 3, 2014

To Do List Update: Office Progress

Alright folks, we are down to double digit days left before Baby Bee gets here!  We have been making some progress on our To Do list and I have some updates to share with you today.  My office has been painted, thanks to Mr. B.  It took forever to cover all the pink paint, but it is finally a nice, bright white (though with the lack of natural light in there, it is hard to tell in pictures).  This is what the office looked like before:

And here are some of the changes we made.  This bookcase moved from Mr. B's office (aka future nursery) and is now housing some of my craft supplies, and some actual books!

We moved the desk that used to live on the other side of the office to the top of my craft table, creating lots of storage space.

With the side wall now empty, we moved Mr. B's desk into that space.

We still have a little organizing and rearranging to do in here, but for the most part, the office space is looking pretty good!  Let's take another look at our To Do list.  Slowly but surely making some progress!

To Do:

Paint my office
Move Mr. B's desk into my office
Paint our bedroom
Paint my dresser
Paint Mr. B's dresser
Move futon and TV into bedroom
Paint nursery
Get (and assemble) nursery furniture
Paint bookshelf for nursery
Paint dresser for nursery
Organize all of Baby's stuff
Decorate nursery