Condo Blues: holidays




Showing posts with label holidays. Show all posts
Showing posts with label holidays. Show all posts

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Sunday, July 12, 2015

15 Non Alcoholic Cocktails for Summer

After the gray winter days, I dance with joy when the sun shines bright in summer.

Except  this summer. We had 19 straight days of rain in June.

We are following that trend this July. We're lucky if we get one day a week that it isn't raining. When that happens, it is more likely to be overcast rather than sunny.


As a treat, I mix up a pitcher of liquid sunshine - a fancy pants juice drink that's alcohol free. A mocktail! It's the perfect refreshing drink when you want something a little more than water and not as sweet as pop.

 

I'm sharing 15 of my favorite mocktail recipes on my food blog Lazy Budget Chef. Click here to read:

15 Summer Mocktail Recipes That Will Make You the Queen of the Cookout on Lazy Budget Chef!


What is your favorite summer drink?


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Wednesday, July 1, 2015

12 Favorite Summer Craft Projects

Summer is in full swing. I am loving it! Warm summer days are excellent DIY and craft project weather. Here are a few of my favorite summer craft projects that are not only clever but useful too!


Pin me!

DIY Personalized Insulated Wine Glass Tumblers –  Fun and reusable!

Friday, May 29, 2015

18 of the Best Father's Day Gifts for Dad!

I asked Husband for cool and usual Father's Day gift ideas we can either buy or DIY and give to our Dads for Father's Day.

I never should have asked. I had to stop Husband after he added a box of live ferrets to his long, humorous, and wildly inappropriate list of gifts for the men in our life.

Besides everyone knows a box of ferrets is more of a Christmas gift idea, not a Father's Day gift idea,  obviously.


Pin this post!


After some quality Pinterest and Internet time, I found some unique Father's Day gift ideas that are a step beyond the World's Greatest Dad coffee mug type of gift.

Not that Dad doesn't deserve a World's Greatest anything gift, mind you. It's just that you can give him a Father's Day mug only once. After that, you need to come up with another awesome gift for the following year.

I created a Father's Day gift guide with my gift suggestions and posted it on my food blog Lazy Budget Chef. Click the link for great ideas and save the box of ferrets for Christmas.



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Sunday, May 3, 2015

14 Epic Star Wars DIY Projects

Happy Star Wars Day! May the Fourth be with you!

When Star Wars came out, it was the first movie to have have major toy tie ins. Some of the toys were pretty good like the action figures. Some of the toys were not so great like the flashlight light sabers. And most of the time, the toy or character thing you wanted as a kid didn’t exist so you had to make it.

Now all of those Star War maker kids are grown up. They share the Star Wars movies with their children and play with the cool new Star Wars toys they didn’t have when we were kids. But the coolest thing of all is those maker kid grew up and are still making epic Star Wars DIY projects. Some for their kids but mostly for themselves.

14 Epic Star Wars DIY Project Roundup


May the Fourth Be With You: 14 Star Wars DIY Décor Projects


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

How to Make Aluminum Can Coasters

I have another aluminum can craft for you today! Today’s tutorial is for round soda pop can coasters.

diy beer can coasters
 Aluminum can coasters a fun handmade gift!

Husband and I often work at our computer desks with a coffee mugs or water glasses in front of us. Anything on the desk is fair game to be used as a coaster because we don’t want to ruin our wood desktops. As you can imagine, that doesn't always work well because spilling things is my superpower. Paper envelopes pulled from the recycling bin make lackluster and sometimes soggy coasters.

Let’s fix that.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Mother’s Day Tool Giveaway with WORX Tools: 3 Winners!

One of the benefits of living in a condo is having a homeowner’s association that mows our yard. Unfortunately sometimes the lawn guys are more about doing the job quickly than accurately.   Husband and I figure it time to invest in lawn tools so we can trim and tidy up the edging the lawn service hits and misses.

WORX Giveaway collage


Husband and I checked out the WORX 20V MaxLithium GT Trimmer/Edger/Mini-mower and it’s pretty neat. It take the place of three power lawn tools in your garage, a grass trimmer, an edger, and a mini-mower, very nice for those of us with limited tool storage space. The other feature Husband and I appreciate is the how easily the telescoping shaft adjusts to the user’s height. When it comes to yard work Husband and I trade off jobs as our schedules permit (and who gets tired of wonky edging first.)

Thursday, March 5, 2015

How to Make Aluminum Can Shamrocks and Four Leaf Clovers

If you drink something from an aluminum can in my house, I probably have a hidden agenda. No, I’m not trying to fill you full of the BPA that most likely lines the can (actually I’m sorry for subjecting you to that,) 

how to amke aluminum can shamrocks
 Pin this recycled aluminum can craft to your Pinterest boards for later! Share it with your friends!

Most likely it is that I bought your favorite pop and I had to buy it in a can. Or I bought the can over the bottle version so I can use the can in recycling project. Thanks for helping me out.

I have green aluminum cans in my stash. Saint Patrick’s Day is coming up. Let’s make shamrocks!

Friday, February 20, 2015

Luck of the Irish $1,500 Paypal Cash Giveaway!

I'm always looking for ways to thank you for being The Most Awesome Community on Planet Earth.

Unfortunately, I can't do it in person or by anonymously shoveling your driveway (especially for you Australian readers. You are having as hot a summer as we are having as cold a winter, I'd love to personally visit you to thaw out say hello) but I can thank you with a giveaway of something that always fits - cold, hard, Paypal cash. $500 dolla, dolla bills to be exact!

I'd love it if a Condo Blues reader won this giveaway!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Romantic Pink Rose Centerpiece

 Husband likes to surprise me with flowers – often. I’ve gotten decent at arranging flowers by necessity. (I know you feel sorry for me.)  A few times, people have asked me to do flowers for them, most recently for Mother and Father-in-Law’s 50th anniversary party.

By luck I bought the flowers for their centerpieces from ProFlowers because they were having a rose sale. That’s when I clued in that ProFlowers sells flowers you can arrange any way you want.


masuline romantic rose centerpiece


Need a DIY fresh flower Valentine’s Day, wedding, anniversary, or party centerpiece? Keep reading I’ll teach you how I made this one!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

DIY Glass Bead Valentine’s Day Wreath

I’m doing something different this winter. I get a case of the blues most winters after I put away our Christmas décor. The inside of the house is almost as colorless as the overcast gray winter days outside and will stay that way until everything starts blooming in the spring.

I’m trying something new and adding a bit of color to the house by decorating for Valentine’s Day.
I found a metal heart shaped wreath form at Joann’s. I used that as my inspiration and with a little upcycled fabric and a whole bunch of glass vase fillers (also called glass craft rounds) I made a heart shaped Valentine’s Day wreath.

Glass bead Valentines day heart wreath
Even better the metal wreath form is sturdier and less likely to break than the not so eco friendly foam wreath forms. Yay!

How to Make a Heart Shaped Valentine’s Day Wreath

Monday, December 22, 2014

42 Homemade Christmas Gift Tags

I like wrapping a pretty gifts for Christmas. I keep a box of gift boxes and bags I reuse every year and another box of wrapping paper and things like silk flowers, fabric ribbon, and bows I recycle into clever gift toppers for the Christmas gifts I need to ship.

  42 handmade printable gift tags r


For the gifts I deliver in person, I made gift wrapping easier on myself by using the reusable cloth gift bags I sewed from my historical costuming scrap stash. I still get the pretty and fancy look I like but with a time and sanity saving green twist because I reuse my homemade gift bags year after year.


I sewed my cloth gift bags as a post- Christmas cabin fever project and used them the following year. Read my homemade cloth gift bag tutorial here.

With all of the attention I pay to buying meaningful gifts and their fancy wrappings, I’m ashamed to say I have long history of phoning it in when it comes to Christmas gift tags.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Outdoor Christmas Décor: Modern Lighted Tomato Cage Christmas Trees

For as much I enjoy looking at Christmas light displays you’d think I’d do something fancy outside of my own home.

modern tomato cage Christmas tree with lights
Nope. I keep it simple.

Why?

Because it is always too cold outside to put up and take down elaborate Christmas decorations!

Peace, love, joy, and warmth. That’s what my outdoor Christmas décor is all about.

And by warmth I mean not freezing my legs off while I’m outside or in the garage building new Christmas decorations.

This year I made a few changes in our outdoor Christmas décor and especially in what I used to display them. I wore the right work pants for the job, my Duluth Trading Company Women's Fleece-Lined DuluthFlex Fire Hose Pants.

Did I mention these multi-pocketed wonder pants are lined with warm and soft fleece, one of my favorite cold weather fabrics? Oh yes, my friends. My new fancy pants kept me warm while installing Christmas decorations. They proved their worth later that evening on a walk with Lacey to look at Christmas lights a local park. We left early because Husband wore jeans and got cold. Me? Not cold at all.

fleece lined fire hose pants
The best thing about Duluth Trading Company clothes is they realize women need just as many pockets in their clothing as men.  DuluthFlex Fire Hose Pants have six packets: 2 front pockets, a zippered thigh cargo pocket, 2 back pockets, and a Pokey Things Pocket (their name, not mine) on the right back thigh.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Christmas Kid Craft: Waterless Mason Jar Snow Globes

Last Christmas my nephews Mr. 5 of 10 and Mr. 9 of 10 surprised Husband and I with a homemade Christmas gift. My sister-in-law said that they wanted to make a Christmas gift for me because I often make gifts for them. Yay!

My sister-in-law tried to hedge things a bit by saying, “it might not be very good…” as I unwrapped our gift but I cut her off with a happy squeal. “Look the boys made us a mason jar snow globe! I love it!”

Because I do. 

diy waterless Christmas snow globe


With a little adult help, your kids can make waterless mason jar snow globes too. They make fabulous gifts and even better Christmas decorations!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Forget Elf on the Shelf! We Have Yoda on the Soda

People are insane about Elf on the Shelf.

Either they think Elf is a fun tradition and love it or they think Elf is a creepy stalker partying like a student on Spring Break and hate it.


There is no middle ground.

Husband came up with an Elf on the Shelf alternative.

I present:


Yoda on the Soda
“You will know (the good from the bad) when you are calm, at peace. Passive. A Jedi uses the Force for knowledge and defense, never for attack.”

Yoda on the Soda.

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Monday, December 1, 2014

Easy Outdoor Christmas Swag Decor

I want to add vertical live evergreen swags to my outdoor Christmas decorations. I couldn’t find them for sale this early in the season. My source for free evergreen branches (Christmas tree lots) didn’t have any to give either.

I thought I might have to wait until next year to do the project until I found my inspiration. A red and silver jingle bell door knob decoration! I’ll take four please. One to swag and hang on each of my four porch posts. 

how to make an outdoor jinglebell evergreen Christmas
  Pin this step by step tutorial for later!

This tutorial is so ridiculously easy. Lacey could do it if she had thumbs.

How to Make a Vertical Jingle Bell Christmas Swag


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Captain America On Your Left T Shirt

Not a week goes by after Husband comes home from a training run that he has a story about how someone refuses to follow the rules of our running/biking/walking/rollerblading trails and almost causes an accident.  Apparently folks like to use the center of the trail instead of keeping to the right hand side. Verbally signaling when they are about to pass someone, which should be on the left, doesn't always happen either.

The first time we watched Captain America 2: The Winter Soldier (we see every Marvel movie at least three times in the theater) Husband leaned over and excitedly whispered in my ear, “See! See! Captain America has good running etiquette!” during the scene where Steve Rodgers is out for a  jog and calls out, “on your left” every time he passes a fellow runner.


Captain America On Your Left Freezer Stencil Shirt


I knew right then and there I needed to give Husband a Captain America On Your Left t shirt as a gift. I couldn't find one in a store so I made one! You can too. Here’s how.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Black and Bronze Bottle Cap Christmas Wreath

You need to start DIYing early, If you want to make this year a crafty Christmas and I have just the project for you!

I poked around my bottle cap collection, got some Christmas decoration inspiration from this year’s popular bronze and copper color scheme, and made a glitzy bottle cap Christmas wreath!


bottle cap Christmas wreath


How in the world did I recycle metal bottle caps into something green AND glitzy, two words that normally don’t’ go together?

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

How to Make Bottle Cap Pattern Weights

I use some of the same sewing patterns more than once and if I use straight pins to pin the pattern to the fabric before cutting it out - holy pattern pin holes Batman! My patterns get pin holed to shreds.

how to make magnetic bottle cap pattern weights


Pattern weights keep sewing patterns from slipping and shifting on the fabric when you cut it out. They don't leave holes or marks in your fabric either. I have a lot of Christmas sewing coming up. I figure it was about time I used pattern weights instead of straight pins.
handmade gift idea
I tried using metal bottle caps as pattern weights. I wanted my weights to be be heavier.  I could have filled the bottle caps with plaster of Paris to add weight but I didn’t want to deal with the mess. 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Fearful Dog Behavior Training

One of our favorite ways to socialize a rescue dog with behavioral issues is going to pet rescue events. It is a dog appropriate venue with better behaved dogs, rescue people understand if you ask them to approach your dog in a weird way because you are working on an issue.

They also understand if you have to leave early because your dog is tapped out or has an issue. We learn about new ways to help our dog, support great causes, and it is fun!


how to use dog events for behavoiral rehab training
Hey Charlie, do you need help with those bungee cords? I’m feeling a little distracted. Lisa says I should do something to put that energy in a positive direction when I feel this way.


The Capital Area Humane Society Halloween Pet Parade is something we look forward to all year. We work up to it by going to smaller dog rescue events throughout the summer. This event can be overwhelming to a dog because there are a lot of people and animals in a small space and costumes are involved.

Some of the people and dog Halloween costumes are clever and amazing. Here are a few of our favorites.