Tuesday, May 31, 2016

DIY Disney Camera Buddy

DIY Winnie The Pooh Camera Buddy
I've been wanting to give this idea a try for a while now, but didn't want to screw up a $20 souvenir! So when I recently stumbled upon Tuesday Morning's clearance sale, I knew it was time to give this a try. Have you ever tried getting a little one to look at your camera? It can be pretty tricky. This camera buddy will turn your clunky black box into a soft fluffy Pooh Bear. A much nicer and interesting object to look at, don't you think?

I found this Winnie The Pooh plush for only $4; a steal if you ask me! And I used this very easy to follow tutorial on  making lens creatures. Seriously, it only took me an hour. And the tutorial only calls for scissors, pins, needle & thread, and enough elastic to wrap around your lens twice. THAT'S IT.

My seams were not so lovely, but since they are facing the lens, it doesn't really matter. I will say, I was surprised at how hesitant I was to cut into Pooh. I suppose Doc McStuffins has it's affect on a Mama.

Overall, I couldn't be happier with how this Camera Buddy turned out. I had no idea it would come together so quickly! I think this would be a fantastic gift for a new mom, a scrapbooker, or a Tinkerbell Treasure for your resident Disney photographer. It would also be a great way to upcylce those Disney souvenirs that get neglected. If you have a passing thought that this would be of interest to a fellow Disney mama, you absolutely should give it a try. Until next time, may all your days be filled with fairy dust!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

DIY Disney Road Trip Travel Clips

Happy Memorial Day Weekend Musketeers! In honor of the long road trip we have ahead of us, I'm running this great road trip idea! I hope you enjoy it and have a beautiful holiday weekend wherever you are.

Say Hello To Good Behavior!
We have traveled to Walt Disney World in just about every way possible, although I'm still holding out for the auto train. When I was younger, we rode down in our MT Motorhome. In my opinion, there is no better way to go! Of course, I wasn't driving, so that may have something to do with that. We've gone by airplane, driven through the night, even taken a conversion van and tents. Our next trip will be in our new minivan. I'm not exactly dreading the trip; in fact, there are several things I am looking forward to about it (not the least of which is that our own Mary Poppins will be able to come with us!) But we all know that a long road trip can wear on the best of us, so I've taken some precautionary measures. When your traveling from a cottage in the Midwest to Florida, it pays to have every advantage you can get!

This was an inspired idea from Julie at Less Than Perfect Life of Bliss. I took it and Disney-fied it. I used our blog names and created a tag for each of us -- yes, even the adults. The idea here is that everyone starts with his or her clip on the visor. Good behavior = clip stays up. Bad behavior = clip comes down. (Your elementary teacher probably had a similar system.) It's up to you how you enforce this, but we give the opportunity to earn your clip going back on the visor, by being helpful, polite, etc. Just make sure everyone is clear on the rules at the start. At the next stop (gas, rest area, restaurant) whoever has a clip still on the visor gets a goodie. (This is where that Tinkerbell Treasure hunting can come in handy!) I'm all for bribery - especially in the case when 6 people are trapped in a van for 18 hours, two of whom are strapped into carseats.

One caveat, our visor was too thick for the clothespins to clip onto it. I took some elastic and made a band that fit over the visor. We clipped the clothespins to that. If you need to do the same, make sure you subtract a couple inches from the band measurement; you want it to be nice and tight against the visor. Those clips can get heavy!

I love this idea. Simple and cute! Until next time, may all your days be filled with fairy dust!

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

DIY Disney Pressed Penny Push Pins

I am a self-professed pressed penny enthusiast. I always head to Disney armed with rolls of quarters and pennies. It's a great way to keep the littles busy while we wait for the thrill-seekers to to finish their attractions. I especially love to hit the penny machines in the shops on Sunset Boulevard in Disney's Hollywood Studios. The wait for The Rockin' Roller Coaster and Hollywood Tower of Terror can be LONG. If we didn't get fast passes and we've already finished the Disney Jr. show, this is where I go to keep the kiddos busy. Of course, there are penny machines throughout the entire Disney Resort. Some of the best pressed pennies can be had at some of the less-visited places. A pressed penny hunt can be a great activity for a non-park day.

And what's better than a 51 cent souvenir? This also means, however, that I have quite a collection of pressed pennies. And that I am always looking for something to do with them. It occurred to me that I could glue them to some flat head push pins to create a unique (and useful) souvenir. I LOVE a useful souvenir. I feel better about it taking up space in my house. So these fantastic little beauties were born! I used Gorilla Glue, but I think an epoxy or even Super Glue would do the trick.

So simple and so fun. I think they'd be the perfect stocking stuffer, don't you? Or perhaps a graduation gift? After all, the traditional graduation gift is money, right? Wrap these up in a sweet little box and include a couple of bills in there too. Voila! Thoughtful and easy - my kind of gift! And these certainly fall into the nap time friendly and budget friendly category as well. I just love these little gems. I see many sets in our future!

I hope you have fun making these, and until next time, may all your days be filled with fairy dust!

Saturday, May 21, 2016

DIY Disney's It's A Small World T-shirt

This was a terrific little project for our Small World fans. And a nice easy project to round out our Small World marathon of posts. I promise, this is the last one for a while. Since Minnie is rapidly outgrowing all her 0-3 month clothes, I thought another shirt would suit her well. And she needs a cute little shirt to wear while she plays in that fantastic new room of mine hers. In truth, this would be a great unisex project for a new baby.

For this T-shirt, I used the Silhouette machine and the Travel Landmark shape (Design ID #27470). I made sure to size it according the the shirt I wanted it on - for the 6 month shirt shown here, I made sure the design measured 6.25" across. I then used the text tool and the Bimini font to write the slogan. I simply cut it from the vinyl, transferred it to the shirt and painted away. Don't forget to heat set it with the iron. I have to say, I love the Silhouette brand fabric ink. It REALLY holds up well in the wash. And when it comes to baby clothes, around here they go through the washer A LOT. The inks are well worth the money.

I mixed these colors from the ones I had on hand - red, yellow, green, white & brown. I'm very pleased with the way they came out. And in true Mary Blair form, I have a little blip of paint on the windmill where the stencil lifted up. (Mary Blair believed every work of art needed an imperfection. You can check out her five-legged goat for more information on this.) It's not terribly noticeable, and as my grandmother used to say, you couldn't see it from the back of a running horse. And that's good enough for me.

I really like how quick and easy this was. A great way to wrap up our Small World festival of posts! Until next time, may all your days be filled with fairy dust!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Tinkerbell Treasures: Coin Rolls

I saw this idea on pinterest, via Martha Stewart, as a stocking stuffer and thought it would be great for a Tinkerbell Treasure! I love the pressed penny machines in Disney. I think they are a great way to spend your waiting time -- waiting for a dinner reservation, waiting for the taller kiddos to finish their thrill rides, waiting for mom to check out at the shops. I'll buy that kind of patience for 50¢ any day of the week! Plus, there are all sorts of games you can play with the pressed pennies once you've collected a few (more on that in a later post).

For these coin rolls I decided to just wrap them in scrapbook paper scraps, but you could certainly decide to use a solid paper and ribbons that match your child's favorite Disney character, or specifically Disney paper. And I was tempted to skip the cellophane, but it really makes a big difference in keeping the ends of the rolls together and adding a sweet touch. A roll of quarters ($10) and a roll of pennies (50¢) should keep two kids busy for at least a couple of days (that's 10 pressed pennies each), that is, if they don't develop an obsession for collecting pressed pennies!

If you want to make these for the pressed penny lover in your life, I have a downloadable page of tags for you to use. Just click here, or click on the thumbnail below to download. Until next time, may all your days be filled with fairy dust!

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Disney DIY: Road Trip Pillowcase

As a kid, we made many a road trip to Walt Disney World. From our place in the Midwest, it was about 18 hours. That's a LONG time to be on the road for any kid. We were lucky to be traveling in a motorhome most of that time; my heart goes out to those who must travel in a car.

These pillowcases, looked like they would be perfect for a Disney road trip. Anything to make the magic last a little longer! I think they would also be a perfect surprise for your kiddos at the start of the trip. Of course I used my fairy wand to make them Disney-ready. I could EASILY get carried away with themeing these! As always, think about the color palettes of your kid's favorite Disney characters, licensed fabrics, iconic images. The list seems endless!  And of course, you could use a Mickey or Minnie silhouette in place of the monogram. Anyhoo, on to the tutorial.

Materials Needed for Standard Pillowcase:

24" x 43" rectangle of main fabric (Toy Story)
2.5" x 43" strip of fabric for trim (wagons)
12" x 43" rectangle of contrast fabric (orange)
2  15"x12" rectangles for pocket (yellow polka dot)
1 fat quarter for monogram (wagons)
3" piece of velcro
22" piece of cotton webbing
matching thread

I combined two tutorials to get just the look I wanted: for the case, I used this 15-minute Pillowcase Tutorial from The Cottage Home, and for the pocket and handle I mostly used this tutorial from Amazing Mae. I recommend printing them to reference as you follow these directions.

Specifically, I followed steps 1- 7 of the 15-Minute Pillowcase. Trust the directions, they are amazing!

Because I wanted this case to be completely washable I chose to use quilting cotton for the monogram. I also wanted to hide as many rough edges, hems and seams as I could, so I chose to do the monogram at this point in the process. I ironed-on sewable interfacing from Silhouette to the fabric for the monogram. I sent it through the Silhouette to cut out a "J" in Franklin Gothic Medium Font, ironed it onto the right side of one pocket piece (12" x 16"), and zig zag stitched all around it. (If you don't have a Silhouette machine, just print out a letter in a font you like, trace it onto the wrong side of your fabric and cut it out.) Now it can go through any number of washings without that the monogram falling off.

At this point, I picked up Amazing Mae's tutorial at step 5 to make the pocket.

At step 7, I pinned one side of the velcro in the middle of the top edge of the pocket, so that the middle of the strip was 1" from the top edge and directly over the monogram. I then topstitched 1" from the top edge of the pocket with a decorative stitch sewing right over the strip of velcro. This way, the stitching for the velcro doesn't show.

From here on, I referenced Mae's tutorial, but followed these steps instead:
Fold your pillowcase, right sides together, aligning the opening edges (in my case, the orange fabric). Iron the crease (or the bottom of the pillowcase). Open the fabric and place your pocket (but don't pin) on the pillowcase where you want it. Remember, you will have a 3/4" seam allowance around all raw edges. Pin the other piece of velcro on the pillow case, aligning it with the piece already on the pocket. Remove the pocket and sew around all sides of the velcro so it is firmly on the pillowcase. Now pin your pocket back on the pillowcase, aligning the velcro pieces and topstitch around all three sides.

Take your cotton webbing (handle) and pin it along the top of the pillowcase so that is it aligned with both sides of the pocket. Pin it in place. Fold your pillowcase in half (along the pressed crease), right sides together, making sure that the webbing is tucked into the right sides and not twisted (so when you turn it right side out it will indeed be a handle). Sew around the two unfinished edges (side and bottom) of pillowcase.

And that's it! You have a pillowcase that is road-ready! Fill it up and enjoy the ride. Until next time, may all your days be filled with fairy dust.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

DIY Mickey Oreo Pops

These are a labor of love, and definitely not a nap-time friendly project. But if you are a fan of Oreo cookies, or know someone who is, then it's totally worth it. These pops tend to be a bit fragile, so traveling with them can be tricky. They may be best left to party favors and at home magic. Still, the impact is great, so I still say give them a try.

I was inspired to try this when I ran across this pin on Pinterest. I tried a couple of different ways of doing this. The first and foremost recommendation is that if you are putting them on sticks, definitely get the double stuffed Oreos. They are easy to get the stick into and unlikely to break. (Wilton brand sticks can be found at your local craft store, or here.)

Getting the mini Oreos to stick onto the big ones was a bit of a challenge. I melted Wilton's light cocoa candies and used that as the glue. In retrospect, I would use the dark cocoa next time as it matches the Oreo color better. I found that melting the chocolate so that it wasn't runny was the best bet, as it provided a nice paste-like texture: enough to stick the cookies together, but not so thin it was running all over the mat and not staying on the pops. I also found the ideal tool for applying the chocolate was a small spreader.

Although these look fun and taste great, I was not pleased with the fragility factor, as I wanted to take these with us to Disney. Even surviving airport security, let alone the flight, seemed a bit perilous. I tried covering them in chocolate, but the Wilton's didn't spread evenly and they looked lumpy. (Although Doc said they tasted great!) I also tried using magic shell, but that didn't set up properly. I might try melting chocolate chips next time.

If you give this idea a try, I'd love to hear how it worked for you! And if you have any tips on how to make these a bit more resilient, please, please, share. Until next time, may all your days be filled with fairy dust!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

DIY Upcycled Disney T-shirt Pool Bag

I know I've mentioned this about a bazillion times, but I'll say it again, I hate those plastic-y graphics on T-shirts. Like, a lot. But sometimes you can't help but end up with one from a trip with friends. What to do? I say make a cute pool bag for your next trip! Doc needs a small bag (that's hard to miss!) to keep his sunscreen, hat, phone and arcade card in while he's at the pool. This would be perfect!

I saw this idea on Pinterest and immediately knew it was the project for this T-shirt. The shirt has sentimental value, but I can't bear to wear it. Perfect solution. I followed Jill's tutorial from One Good Thing. I particularly liked how she braided the handles of her bag. Great detail.

Modifications I made to her tutorial: I sewed two diagonal seams at the corner of the bag to give it the shape I was looking for; I also took a strip of fabric from the sleeve and sewed it over the braided seam. It just hid all my imperfect sewing! You can see a close up of it in the photo to the right.

All in all this was a terrifically easy project and certainly nap-time friendly! And for you budget conscious Disney travelers, this project is FREE if you already own the T-shirt. It doesn't get better than that! Until next time, may all your days be filled with fairy dust!

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

DIY Disney Scrapbook Layout | Anatomy of a Disney Enthusiast

Rerunning one of my favorite scrapbook layouts with updated links for the brushes! Enjoy.

You all know I am a Disney scrapbooker, and I am absolutely in love with this Disney Enthusiast layout! Partially because I designed the entire thing; partially because Doc has never been scrapped so perfectly! My inspiration for this layout came from a very clever resume I saw via Pinterest. I knew that I wanted to do this for Doc at the very least, I am still hoping to get it done for all of us Disney fanatics in the cottage! Maybe I'll select one of us each trip for this treatment. It wasn't too hard to do and it's a fun surprise in the midst of my project life layouts.

Here's how I did it. I work in Photoshop CS5 (If you know a student who can purchase this for you, you can same a bundle!). I took a photo of Doc that showed his entire body and converted it to black and white. I then used the marquee tool to create the white boxes. Once I had them in place I used my custom shape tool and my brushed to create the smaller icons. You can find my Disney Mountain Range Digital Brushes here, free for personal use. You can find my Disney Snacks Digital Brushes here, also free for personal use. If you can't find the custom shape you are looking for, simply google "free custom shapes photoshop" and a whole host of options should come up.

If you decide to do this too, I'd love to see what you come up with. Send me and link, tag me on Instagram, or leave me a comment here. Until next time, may all your days be filled with fairy dust!

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Tinkerbell Treasures: Disney Door Hanger DIY

As I have mentioned, I LOVE giving Tinkerbell Treasures while in Disney. There is something so magical about the idea of Tink delivering a little something while you sleep. I can't resist it.

These door hangers would be so fantastic for those little giftees that need a special presentation. I like to use them on the bedroom doors in our villa. It's a sure-fire way to get the kids' day started off right. This would be an especially good way to tell the kiddos what's on the agenda for the day. You could fill them with a map of the park you are headed to (these are free and always available at the front desk), a new pair of shades, a snack, a new trading pin, a few Disney Dollars, a gift card to the arcade, the possibilities are endless. We always try to schedule a non-park day while in Walt Disney World, and this is a great way to add a little excitement to those less intense days. (I can also see them used as sleepover party favors, or birthday morning goodie bags.)

I used my Silhouette SD to make these. It was SO simple. I used design shapes 3d Door Hanger (id #21330) and House of 3: Dream Scallop Seal (id# 6821). I resized the door hanger so the box portion was as large as I could make it:

I had to then move the hanger shape to another page. After that I just cut and put it together. Easy peasy! I would recommend using the heaviest card stock you have if you plan on filling this with anything heavier than a map and some Disney Dollars. It wants to come off the handle fairly easily. You could also solve this problem by taping it together once it's on the door.

I hope you find lots of ways to use these versatile door hangers. Until next time, may all your days be filled with fairy dust!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

DIY Disney Margarita Tour for Cinco de Mayo!

In honor of Cinco de Mayo, we decided to do our own Disney Margarita Tour. If you are a margarita fan, you will no doubt know that La Cava del Tequila is THE place to go for some of the best and most inventive margaritas on property. But it's not the ONLY place. We chose to recreate some new and some vintage recipes to celebrate Cinco de Mayo with some of the the old crew. What a blast!

And special thanks to Mr. Photos From The Parks for the incredible food!

Here are the recipes we tried. We salted all of our glasses with pink Himalayan salt. Enjoy them! And until next time, may all your days be filled with fairy dust!

Sun-Kissed Margarita
From Mickey's Gourmet Cookbook
(Outer Rim, Contemporary - which is no longer there)

Lemon Rind
Kosher salt
1.5 oz 80 percent oak-aged tequila
3/4 oz brandy-based orange liqueur
3/4 orange liqueur
4 oz sour mix
crushed ice
lime wheel
1 oz orange juice

Rub the rim of the cocktail glass with lemon rind & dip into kosher salt. Combine tequila, liqueurs & sour mix in a shaker filled with ice. Shake well and strain into salt-rimmed cocktail glass. Top with orange juice. Garnish with lime wheel.

Seven Seas Sunset -- same as above, but substitute cranberry juice for the orange juice.

Avocado Margarita 

La cava del Tequila - Epcot's Mexico Pavillion
(recipe from Disney Food Blog)

1/2 ripe Haas avocado
2 oz white 100% agave Tequila
1 oz Midori melon liquor
juice of one lime
1 oz. Agave syrup

Blend all ingredients in a blender until very smooth and creamy. Serve in salt rimmed glass. (use Hibiscus salt if you can. Look for it at the market next time you're in the Mexico pavilion in Epcot!)

Habanero Lime Margarita
available at any resort lounge
(Recipe from Party Through The Parks)

1 part Patron Silver tequila
3 parts Mr. & Mrs. T's sweet & sour
pour ingrédients over ice and add a good drizzle of Monin habanero lime syrup and the juice from half a lime

Agave Nectar Margarita
available at any resort lounge
(from Party Through The Parks)

1 part Tierras Organic Blanco tequila
3 parts simple syrup made with agave nectar (50% agave/50% water)
Pour ingrédients over ice and add the juice from 1/2 a lime

Jalapeño Margarita Recipe
(Cava del Tequila - Mexico pavilion, Epcot)

1/4 fresh cucumber (peeled and seeded and then cut into 1.5" pieces)
2" piece green bell pepper (seeded)
1/2 of 1 small jalapeño (seeded and cut into 1.5" pieces)
1 shot Silver tequila
Fresh lime juice
Triple Sec - orange flavor
Simple Syrup / agave nectar

Method: place fruit in the bottom of your glass and muddle to release some of the juices. Don't go crazy here, muddling shouldn't create a mush of fruit, just sufficiently bruise them. Top off the glass with ice and add 2 parts tequila, 1 part triple sec, 2 parts lime juice, 1 part simple syrup made with agave nectar. Shake and serve in a Himalayan salt rimmed glass.