Month: April 2020

May Bullet Journal

Hello everyone, it’s that time of month to get your bullet journal ready for May! These are strange times that we are living in. I know many of you have had your lives turned upside down. During this time time I have found my bullet journal helpful to keep track of all my projects and to do lists. That’s the great thing about bullet journals, they can change with your changing needs.

As always I have taken inspiration from the very talented Shayda Campbell. Lily of the Valley is the theme for this month.

 Disclaimer: This blog post contains affiliated links. As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases. If you use them, I might be rewarded credit or a commission of the sale. Please note that I only recommend what I personally use and love and I always have my readers best interest at heart.

Month of May Set Up

I had some fun this month again with water colors. It was fun playing with the greens and getting different shades. I kept my similar setup for this month. However, I did add a spring cleaning challenge to the back of this month’s set up.

May Bullet journal
May Bullet journal
May bullet journal
May bullet journal

I hope you are all doing well out there right now and staying safe. If you have some extra time on your hands I would love to see your bullet journal setups for May! Comment below!

Toddler Balance Beam

It’s warming up outside and Little One is loving spending time running and exploring! We do have a little slide climber for him but I wanted something that he could walk on and jump off of. So I thought I would make a toddler balance beam. This was a great project to tackle during the stay at home order because I used supplies I already had, meaning no trips to the hardware store.

For this project I wanted to use up some of the scrap wood I have laying around my garage. I have a bunch of spare wood from my basement renovation, for example, I wanted to make this as easy as possible, and I didn’t want to cut anything. Scraps only!

Process

Like I said above, I didn’t want to cut anything. My saw was lost under a winter of things piled up. Needless to say I didn’t want to get out my saw. I had a 2*4 left over from my basement renovation that was about 6 feet. I grabbed three 2*4 to use as the supports, and these were about 18 inches long.

The first thing I did was take out any stray nails in the boards. Some were tougher than others, but I got them in the end. This board was a wall stud and was not in the best shape. I didn’t want Little One to get any splinters so my next step was giving it a good sanding.

There were lots of little holes and rough patches in the top of the board (I didn’t worry about the bottom). I used wood-filler to fill the holes and let it dry for a couple of hours. After the filler dried I took a finer grit sandpaper and gave it one last sanding.

removing nails for toddler balance beam

Assembly

The next step was assembling the toddler balance beam. I used a drill and made two holes in each of the support pieces, staggered a bit off center. Next, I positioned the two end pieces about 1 inch in from the end of the balance beam. Using a tape measure I found the center of the board and placed the next support piece there. I would recommend placing a support at least every three feet.

At this point you could stop and it would be fine to use. However, we get a lot of precipitation so I wanted to add some protection to the wood. I decided to paint it. I headed to the paint storage in the basement and found this light blue left over from the previous owners. Using my scavenged paint I put two coats on the bottom and the top. And it is done!

toddler balance beam

Balance Beam

Little one has really taken to the balance beam! His favorite activity right now is jumping off of it. It is only 4 inches off the ground so it is the perfect height to practice jumping! This was an easy project and it didn’t take too much time. The only thing was that between the wood filler and paint drying it did take two days. I may have been distracted here and there, as well.

toddler balance beam
Toddler balance beam

Let me know in the comments below if you make a toddler balance beam. I would like to see your results!

Spring Cleaning Challenge

The sun is shining, flowers are blooming, and here in the north woods we are starting to open our windows again! Spring for me, while beautiful, can also be challenging with all the melting snow and the mud that it creates. By this time of year, I am beyond ready to get rid of the winter blues and freshen up my home. This year I have created a spring cleaning challenge in my bullet journal. This is useful to keep myself on track for all my tasks. I know many of you are home right now so I thought that you might feel like challenging yourself, too!

 Disclaimer: This blog post contains affiliated links. As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases. If you use them, I might be rewarded credit or a commission of the sale. Please note that I only recommend what I personally use and love and I always have my readers’ best interests at heart.

Spring Cleaning Challenge

I am planning on spreading out this challenge over a couple of weeks. I will attempt to tackle a couple of tasks each day and see how it goes. There are a number of items on my list that are going to take much longer than others.

I also decided to get a little crafty with the water colors in my bullet journal for this spread, something subtle with some color. Using a bullet journal is no nice to keep all my thoughts, to do’s, and other information in one place.

Spring cleaning challenge bullet journal spread

Products

For all the items on this list I will be using my homemade cleaners and my eco friendly laundry soap.

Kitchen

  • Clean fridge and oven
  • Take all items out of the cabinets, assess items, clean shelves, and place items back
  • Clean counter tops, fronts of cabinets, floors, moldings, and windows

Bathroom

  • Take all items out of the vanity, assess items, clean shelves and drawers, and place items back
  • Clean vanity, sink, mirror and window
  • Clean the shower, toilet, floor, and molding
  • Wash the shower curtain

Linen Closet

  • Take items out and assess
  • Clean floor, shelves, and molding
  • Place items back

Hall Closet

  • Go through hats, clothes, and shoes, and toss or donate unneeded items
  • Clean the floor, shelves, and moldings

Living Room

  • Dust all surfaces
  • Put up spring decor
  • Move furniture and clean floors and moldings
  • Wash windows and wash curtains

Dining Room

  • Move furniture and clean floors and moldings
  • Wash windows and curtains
  • Go through any buffets or china cabinets

Bedrooms

  • Go through the closet and dresser and donate or toss items that are not needed. Place items that need to be repaired aside.
  • Clean windows and curtains
  • Move bed and night stands and clean floor and moldings.
  • Wash all bedding

Storage/Basement

  • Go through items and toss, donate, or repurpose
  • Clean walls, molding, and floor

Entry/Hallway

  • Clean floors, molding, and windows
  • Clean any storage or tables

So that’s my spring cleaning challenge! Wish me luck as I try to tackle all the items on this list. Hopefully you have found this list helpful and inspirational as you tackle your own spring cleaning.

DIY Face Mask

We are in strange times, and everyone is still kind of processing everything. Hopefully you all are doing well out there and finding things to fill your time with. I am so grateful that my husband and I have been able to keep working. Both of us are working in human services/care. I have been able to transition to working from home and my husband is still going in to work. Initially I wasn’t going to make this into a post. However, with the encouragement from my husband I decided to go ahead with it. There is so much information out there on how to make a DIY face mask, and the one I am making is made to specializations that my husband wants and needs for work.

He works in a long term care facility and has frequent interactions with seniors. One of the things he needs out of his face mask is for it to be made of cotton fabric. Also, to have at least 3 layers and to have different material on the front and back. This way someone can tell the difference between the inside and outside of the mask. We also wanted to make it really comfy around the ears so it can be worn for a long time. Another feature I added to this DIY face mask is a bit of tucking around the nose area to make it fit better.

Disclaimer: This blog post contains affiliated links. As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases. If you use them, I might be rewarded credit or a commission of the sale. Please note that I only recommend what I personally use and love and I always have my readers’ best interests at heart.

Supplies

I was able to make this mask with scraps that I had from leftover projects. I made two different sizes, a medium size (perfect for me) and a large size which is more appropriate for my husband.

Check out this post on basic sewing terminology for any of the sewing terms in this post.

Cutting

I have made two different sized DIY face masks. The medium is 8 inches by 10 inches and the large is 8 inches by 12 inches. For each mask you will need to cut three pieces of your given size – one for the outside, one inside and the final is the layer that is next to the mouth. That needs to be a different color. You will also need two hair ties. Where the two ends of the hair ties meet, there is a bit of a hard melted area. Cut on either side of the melted area and this will form a string shape. You will need to do this to two hair ties, one for each ear. You could also use elastic, though I didn’t have any, but I did have extra hair ties.

Process

The next step is to press in three pleats into the mask so it can expand to cover the nose and mouth. To do this I pressed the fabric in half then made three approximately 3/4 inch pleats. The big thing is when you have the pleats folded the short edge of the fabric needs to be 3 and 1/2 inches wide. This took a bit of fiddling but it worked in the end (it doesn’t have to be perfect!) Repeat the process on the other two pieces.

DIY face mask making pleats

Next, stitch close to the edge along the side so the pleats stay in place.

This next step is optional, but I found it was helpful. Take the front piece of the mask and place it right side up. Next, take the hair tie and pin it to the edge of the fabric about 5/8 inch from the edge of the fabric. Make sure the lop is turned in toward the center of the mask. This will make sure when you flip the mask the elastics are on the outside. Stitch the ends of the hair tie carefully down. This is a lot of bulk for the needle to go through, so take it slow. I found it help full to stitch the hair tie down first so it didn’t slip out on me when I was trying to sew it all together.

Putting it together

It is really important to place the pieces in the right order before sewing. Place the top piece down, right sides up with the hair ties pinned down so they don’t get in the way. Next, place in the inside piece (it doesn’t matter what side is facing up) but make sure the pleats are going the same direction of the top piece. Finally, place the back piece right side down and make the pleats go in the same direction. Pin carefully and leave a spot open so you can flip it. I like to double pin where I plan to leave a space open. See the picture below for reference.

DIY face mask layering

Carefully stitch around, back stitching at the start and end, leaving a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Carefully flip through the hole that was left and press it with an iron. Finally, stitch around the edge leaving a 1/4 to 1/8 inch seam allowance and close up the hole left to flip.

DIY face mask flipping
DIY face mask

Lastly I folded the fabric back on itself along the edge on either side of the nose about 1/4 inch and stitched along the existing seam. This creates a bit of molding around the nose.

That’s it, a DIY face mask! It took me less time to make (around 15 minutes) the second time. Before giving it to any one make sure you ask about washing instructions. I know that my husband has to hand wash his and leave it at work.

I hope you fount this helpful and that you are saying safe.

c