Pumpkin Decorating Ideas

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Once pumpkins start appearing at the grocery store, I can't help but take home a few to put on the mantel. I particularly love finding fun ways to decorate mini pumpkins. Is it any surprise that this year I would cover mine in pom-poms?!

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First it was the pom-pom wall art, then the pom-pom balloons, and now the pom-pom pumpkins. I think I will officially declare 2013 as the year of the pom-pom for Design Improvised! My mom actually gave me this idea (thanks mom!) and I immediately went for my glue gun.

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I also recently received a box of crafting goodies from Martha Stewart Living (more on that to come!) and these little card stock masquerade stickers were included. I thought it would be fun to disguise a couple of my mini pumpkins with them:

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Both of these ideas only take minutes and a few dollars for the pom-poms and stickers. All you need is a glue gun to stick them on! Even though the little masks had adhesive on the back, I added a dab of glue to make sure they would be extra secure. I then just drew little black strings for the mask with a Sharpie.

I rounded out my Halloween mantel with a few pages from a Martha Stewart Halloween paper pad that I had framed a couple Halloweens ago and continue to reuse! The black vases are normally in our master bedroom, but I thought they would add some nice height to the display.

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So grab a few mini pumpkins and a glue gun and make your own festive mantel in minutes! 

Post by Haeley: Design Improvised

 

Suminagashi Marbleized Paper

top This summer, my mother-in-law bought a suminagashi marbling kit (similar to this one, which only costs $13.50) and all the grandkids couldn't stop using it.

This activity is so simple that even T didn't need much help (though be careful, the dyes stain). All you have to do is add a few drops of the suminagashi (what a word) paint to a pan of water, then swirl the paint with a chopstick or barbeque skewer. Dip a sheet of watercolor paper into the water and the results are absolutely gorgeous. When you want to make a new design you don't even need to change the water in the pan, instead just use a strip of newspaper to soak up the old colors. Easy peasy.

Of course, now I need to figure out what to do with over 50 sheets of marbled paper. Make greeting cards? Wrap very small presents?

I think this would be a great activity with a large group of kids, as you're pretty much guaranteed beautiful results and the set-up isn't very complicated.

If you don't want to invest in the suminagashi dye, we've also marbled with:

* Shaving cream and water colors AND
* Oil and water colors

(both of which are messy, but also very fun). make

Post by Darcy : No Monsters in My Bed

Oatmeal Butterscotch Cookies

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We lived in San Francisco a number of years ago when my hubby was in dental school. Our big splurge came in the form of a Friday night out to eat. I'd strap Hudson into his carseat in the back of my white Pontiac Sunfire coupe, pick Dr. B up at school and we'd head downtown to Chipotle. We'd go all-out, ordering chips AND guacamole with our meal. We spent our date night chatting about our respective days, people-watching the art student crowd so plentiful in the neighborhood, and passing Baby Hudson back and forth so we could each get a bite every once in a while. This became our tradition for many Fridays. 

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And to top off our evening, we'd either walk to Beard Papa's for a cream puff (which is a delicacy deserving a post all of its own), or we'd head over to the Tom's Cookies station at the mall. I almost always got the oatmeal butterscotch cookie; but the one with the giant Reese's peanut butter cup baked into the middle was a close second. After dental school, Tom passed away, and the shop closed. No trip to San Francisco has been the same for me since. When I get homesick for the City that stole my heart, I whip up a batch of my own Oatmeal Butterscotch cookies. They'll never be the same as Tom's, but they do bring back a lot of great memories. 

If you'd like my recipe, I created a little printable recipe card just for you. 

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Download my printable recipe card here.

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Post by Christina Williams

 

 

Worksheet Wednesday: Boo Vowels

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Boo! Things are starting to look spooky around here, and today’s worksheet is no different. Your youngest ones can practice letter recognition and sounds (let’s here those scary “ooooooooos”). This worksheet is also for your young school-age children — have them recognize and color the vowels.

Download our Boo Vowels Worksheet here.

If you’re looking for more ghostly worksheets, check out our Ghost and Pumpkin Tracing Worksheet.

Reposted with permission by Aimée Lowry & Bettijo B. Hirschi from PagingSupermom.com