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Mustache T-Shirt DIY

Post by Darcy of No Monsters in My Bed

Mustache T-Shirt DIYThe other day my youngest daughter announced that she wanted a mustache t-shirt (mustaches being all the rage with this year’s second graders). I’ve always wanted to try freeze paper stenciling with the kids, so this sounded like the prefect opportunity.

Mustache T-Shirt DIY Materials

  • Freezer paper (sold in most grocery stories, next to aluminum foil)
  • Brushes
  • Fabric paint
  • Iron & ironing board
  • Exacto knife (with cutting mat)
  • Plain white t-shirts
  • And some imagination


  1. We found pictures of mustaches we liked in an old coloring book. So my daughter traced some and freestyled some. My son decided to participate too, though we’re all unclear on what exactly he drew. After the kids finished their art, I cut out the stencils using an exacto knife and cutting mat.Mustache T-Shirt DIY 1
  2. My daughter figured out where on the t-shirt she wanted the mustaches and then I ironed the stencils to the shirt. NOTE – Make sure to iron the stencil so that the shiny side faces down. Mustache T-Shirt DIY 2
  3. It is important to take a break in order to “try out” the mustaches.Mustache T-Shirt DIY 3
  4. Paint!Mustache T-Shirt DIY 5
  5. You are supposed to wait for the paint to dry and then rip off the stencil (we cheated and only waited about 25 minutes, which worked fine).

The kids liked this project so much that we spent the rest of the morning making additional stencils (luckily I had a supply of cheap white t-shirts on hand). A great easy activity for cold, miserable winter days.

Darcy blogs at No Monsters In My Bed and is a mother of three children (8, 7, and 5 years old) located in Arlington, VA. She likes: sleeping in, Alice Munro, cheap red wine, old rocking chairs, shoes without heels, mix tapes, balloons, the color grey, & discovering new things.

Halloween Kids Craft: Skeleton Necklace

Written by Darcy of No Monsters In My Bed

Halloween Kids Craft: Skeleton Necklace

Halloween Kids Craft: Skeleton Necklace 1When I saw skull necklaces in Martha Stewart Living I realized that the kids could probably make these on their own (yay! for easy). So we spent an afternoon making LOTS of skulls (and other silly face). And now my son never wants to take his necklace off. Below are the steps for this easy Halloween kids craft; DIY skeleton necklaces.

Here’s the scoop:

Materials: Air Dry Clay (similar to this), brown or black cord (similar to this), a kabob stick for the eyes and the hole in the back, and a needle for the teeth.

1. Roll clay into a quarter sized ball (or slightly larger, depending on the look you want).

Halloween Kids Craft: Skeleton Necklace 2

2. Pinch the sides of the ball in and then use your thumb to create a forehead-type indent.

Halloween Kids Craft: Skeleton Necklace 3

3. Use the kabob stick to make the eyes and to make a hole in the back for the cord.

Halloween Kids Craft: Skeleton Necklace 4

4. Use a needle to draw in “scary” teeth and a nose.

Halloween Kids Craft: Skeleton Necklace 5


Darcy blogs at No Monsters In My Bed and is a mother of three children (8, 7, and 5 years old) located in Arlington, VA. She likes: sleeping in, Alice Munro, cheap red wine, old rocking chairs, shoes without heels, mix tapes, balloons, the color grey, & discovering new things.

Lentil Stew with Spinach and Red Potatoes

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With a forecast of freezing rain for the new few days, we need something warm to eat this week. Lately, we can't get enough of this stew. It's pretty hearty for a vegetarian dish, perfect for the cold days ahead.



* 1/2 cup olive oil

* 2 garlic cloves, minced

* 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper [ground red pepper also works]

* salt

* 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth

* 1 cup brown lentils

* 4-5 red-skinned potatoes, scrubbed clean and cut into 1/2 inch pieces

* 8 cups baby spinach

* 1 tablespoon lemon zest

* 1 tablespoon lemon juice

* 4 tablespoons feta cheese

1. Heat the olive oil in a soup pot over medium-low heat, stir in the garlic and cook until golden, but not brown.

2. Add the cayenne pepper and cook for another minute.

3. Add the broth and lentils. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.

4. Add the potatoes and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally for about 15 minutes (until the potatoes and lentils are tender).

5. Stir in the spinach, lemon zest, and lemon juice, cook 5 more minutes.

6. Sprinkle with feta and eat. – from the The Pink Ribbon Diet (lots of wonderful recipes in here).

Post by Darcy :


Things to Make – 20 (Easy) Painting Projects With Kids

We've had a lot of snow this winter, so if you're looking for some easy art projects to keep the kids entertained while indoors – here are 20 suggestions (click on each project's title for more detailed instructions):

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1. Tissue Paper Tie-Dye – Fold the tissue paper into triangles and wrap with rubber bands (click here to see how to fold). Dip into different colors of paint then unwrap and watch the designs form.

2. Salty Watercolors – This is one of our favorite super easy projects. Use glue to draw designs on thick watercolor paper. Next, sprinkle salt on the glue. Finally "paint" over the salty glue, the color travels slowly through the designs – both fun to watch and fun to look at.

3. Watercolor Nature Prints – Collect interesting items outside (old leaves, acorns, branches, etc). Pour liquid watercolors onto a stamp pad (or use a regular stamp pad) and stamp the natural materials to make fun quirky designs.

4. Marbleized Paper Using Shaving Cream – Combine liquid watercolor paint and shaving cream in a pan, make designs using popsicle sticks or a fork. Press thick watercolor paper into the shaving cream and then wipe off. Voila, art.

5. Marbleized Paper Using Oil – Mix watercolor paint and vegetable oil (click here for the correct ratios). Fill the bottom of a pan with water and using eyedroppers add the oil/paint to the pan, swirl to create designs. Press thick watercolor paper into the designs, then let dry.

6. Winter Trees – Pour brown liquid watercolor paint into a small container. Use paintbrushes to draw a tree trunk on the page. Then add a few drops of paint at the top of the trunk. Use straws to blow the paint away from the trunk, thus making branches. Fun.



7. Secret Agent Messages with Lemon Juice – Paint with lemon juice on paper. The juice dries clear, but if you cook the paper at 350 degrees for a few minutes, your super secret spy message "magically" reappears.

8. Condensed Milk Paintings – Combine condensed milk and liquid watercolors/food coloring. Paint. The colors will look super glossy and thick.

9. Saran Wrap Painting – Paint with watercolor paints on thick paper. Cover with saran wrap and move the saran wrap around to make designs. Let dry, then remove the saran wrap. Lovely.

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10. Toddler Googly-Eyed Monster Art – Ask a toddler to paint. Then have him/her attach two google eyes to their painting. All of a sudden abstract art becomes a monster.

11. Painted Snow Scenes – Use oil pastels or crayons to create a snow scene (my kids drew snowmen). Then paint over the sky with watercolors. You can also add salt to create the illusion of falling snow.

12. Valentine's Day/Heart Banner – Cut out a series of hearts from construction paper. Have the kids decorate the hearts using paints/markers/crayons, etc. Tape the hearts to a string and hang somewhere. Celebrate.

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13. Q-Tip Printmaking – Use a roller brush to thinly spread paint on a pan. Draw designs using q-tips. Then press a sheet of (thick) paper onto the design. Voila – a print.

14. Potato Stamp Prints – Carve a stamp out of a potato. Dip in paint. Create.

15. Paint Photographs – You can also use Sharpies to draw in details.

16. Paint a Cardboard Box – Create a castle. Or a boat. Or whatever you want.

17. String/Kitchen Painting – Dip the strings in paint, then use the painted strings to create designs of paper. Once your child tires of the strings you can also use: sponges, forks, superhero figurines and whatever else you find around the house.

18. Firework Painting – Twist four pipe cleaners to create a star shape. Dip in paint. Add glitter to make the night really sparkle.

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19. Suminagashi Marbleized Paper – Purchase a sumingashi kit (Amazon sells one for $13.50, just click here). The effect is very similar to liquid water colors and cooking oil (#5 above), but with the kit the colors are much more vivid and the designs are more pronounced.

20. Watercolor Pencils & Crayons – For a change of pace, Watercolor Pencils and Watercolor Crayons can be so fun to create with. Draw as you normally would and then paint with water.

Post by Darcy :