Easy Mother’s Day Gifts

Post by Christina of Christina Williams Blog

Today we’ve teamed up with Paper Source to show you two easy, yet spectacular gifts that the kids can help make for mom or grandma for Mother’s Day. These gifts are made with love and serve several purposes, so they’re sure to be a hit with moms and grandmas alike!

Easy Mother's Day Gifts - Tabletop Herb Garden

This tabletop herb garden is perfect for the grandma who likes to garden or cook or entertain. She can keep fresh herbs at arms’ reach so she’s ready to whip up a batch of her famous focaccia bread anytime she wants. The container is wrapped in gorgeous wrapping paper from Rifle Paper Company so it will make a perfect centerpiece for her next dinner party. Bonus: she’ll love to tell her friends that her cutie grandkids made it for her. The project takes about a half hour to complete, and a handful of supplies.

Easy Mother's Day Gifts - Tabletop Herb Garden Supplies

Here’s what you’ll need to make the easy Mother’s Day gift – Tabletop Herb Garden:

And here’s how to make it:

  1. Trace the container onto the back of the wrapping paper. Cut out sections of paper to fit the sides you want to cover.
  2. Spread a coat of Mod Podge directly onto the container.
  3. Press the paper onto the glued surface, smoothing out wrinkles and bubbles as you go. (The extra coat of Mod Podge helps protect it from water and dirt).
  4. Spread another layer of glue on top of the paper. Work quickly and use your thumb to smooth out wrinkles. Let it dry (about 15 minutes) and then cover the remaining surfaces.
  5. Plant your herbs

Easy Mother's Day Gifts - Tabletop Herb Garden Step 4

Easy Mother's Day Gifts - Herb Garden Centerpiece

I the measured and cut the paper; the kids helped with the glue; and then they helped plant the herbs. Each kid chose one special herb for Grandma, and they were so proud of what they chose. We had such a great time making this gift, we kept going and made another versatile gift using the same concept. The full DIY for these  adorable Lined Trays is on my blog.

Easy Mother's Day Gifts - Cookie Tray

I’ve got tutorials up on my blog for these fun painted flower pots as well as the glitter-dipped succulent planters… stop by and see how we made them!

Christina Williams is a blogger and graphic designer living in Salt Lake City, Utah. She’s a night owl and a bookworm, as well as a mother to three children ranging in age from two to eight. She shares her latest DIY and design projects along with her adventures in parenting on her self-named blog, Christina Williams.

Tips for Turning Your Hotel Room into a Nursery

Post by Corri McFadden of Glitter & BubblesTips for Turning Your Hotel Room into a NurseryWhen the Chicago weather was taking a serious toll and the temperature was still well below freezing, Spiro and I decided we needed a break with our little bae Zelda. With such a short notice, we had no desire to travel anywhere far. Then I had my “Ah-Ha” moment — Staycation time! I had heard amazing reviews about The Langham Hotel in Chicago and knew that was the place for us. Zelda and I already absolutely love tea time there, so I knew an entire weekend would be nothing but bliss.

True to their rave reviews, I wasn’t disappointed! The Langham was so easy and kid-friendly, I couldn’t believe it. The best parts; you don’t have to sacrifice luxury and feel like you are an entire world away from the busy city. We said “Bye-Bye” to distractions for the weekend and then it was just Spiro, me, and the babe.

To ensure it was as relaxing as possible for all parties big and small, here are some tips we followed for turning your hotel room into a nursery.

  1. Bring Your Own Bedding 

    Comfort is everything when it comes to your little one, and that starts with their crib! Most hotels do offer cribs, but when they don’t, its time to bring out your Pack & Play. The Langham Hotel in Chicago had an amazing crib with wheels that I was able to move into any part of my room. Wherever I went, Zelda came right along with me! It’s also best to bring bedding from their crib at home and a favorite sleeping toy with you to keep them comfortable. This is key so your little one has the familiar smell and touch of their own room… It will be as if they never left home!Turning Your Hotel Room into a Nursery - Crib Bedding

  2. Utilize a Blanket 

    Always bring a large, thin baby blanket. You can set up a designated play area in the hotel room on the floor with this blanket to house all of your little one’s toys and items they may put in their mouth so they don’t touch the floor. This also designates a known play area and keeps the toys together for easy inventory checks so they don’t end up strewn around the room! Additional plus — easy clean up! (We’ll totally take it!)Turning Your Hotel Room into a Nursery - Blanket

  3. Don’t Forget The Pool! 

    Most hotels don’t have children robes or pool toys. A fun pool floaty that packs flat is great and will seamlessly fit into your luggage. Your little one will feel safe and secure at the pool with their own floaty. Don’t forget the cozy baby robe! It can make or break pool time with the little—who will definitely get grumpy when they’re sopping wet in an oversized, adult robe!Turning Your Hotel Room into a Nursery - Pool Time

  4. Kid-Friendly Activities 

    Call your hotel in advance and check if they host any kid friendly activities; you could be pleasantly surprised that even the most adult driven locations have amazing children activities! If your little one loves to play tea party, a high tea could be even better! The Langham hosts an amazing, award-winning high tea complete with an entire menu just for kids (and Dr.Seuss book!)Turning Your Hotel Room into a Nursery - Activities

Corri McFadden is the owner and founder of eDrop-Off Luxury Consignment.  As a style expert and successful blogger, she hosts a weekly fashion segment on Chicago’s “You and Me This Morning” and features more tips and tricks on her website, Corri McFadden. She also recently launched Glitter and Bubbles, a savvy site for modern-day moms looking for inspiration through fashion, décor and food.

Kids Food Face Collages

Post by Rebecca of Not So SAHM

Kids Food Face Collages

Lately, it seems that my kiddos cannot. stop. eating. They’re both going through big growth spurts and we’ve spent a lot of time talking about foods that help us grow healthy and keep tummies full at the same time! Because eating every twenty minutes to constantly avoid a “case of the hangrys” is just not realistic (no matter how many snacks I tote around with us). So I thought it would be fun to do an art project showing you are what you eat: food face collages!

We’d done something similar before at the National Portrait Gallery, and the kids loved it. It’s super easy and really fun to see what the kids come up with. Kane wanted to use groups of fruit and veggies to make an overall abstract portrait of himself “wearing a hat” and using “carrots for [his] curly hair.” Cam decided to use an eggplant as her actual face and show herself eating a bunch of grapes. I even got in on the fun.

To make our food face collages, you’ll need:  

  • Clip art images of fruit and veggies — check your computer’s clip art, look for free art online (like this), or even purchase a set on Etsy
  • Heavyweight black paper (the food really pops against a black background)
  • Scissors
  • Glue

Simply let the kids cut out fruit and veggie shapes to create a face, and then glue the shapes onto black paper. I encouraged our kids to plan out their portrait first, but if they want to glue as they design (like Kane did), that’s fine too. Kids Food Face Collages

Kids Food Face CollagesKids Food Face Collages Kids Food Face Collages 15 Kids Food Face Collages 9Kids Food Face Collages 11Kids Food Face Collages 13Kids Food Face Collages 15

Rebecca is a mom to two young kiddos and, in her spare time (ha!), likes to pretend she’s a back-up dancer, craft cocktails, and run long distances. A relatively recent SAHM, she blogs family-friendly activities, DIYs and celebration fun at Not-So-SAHM.

Planning Healthy Meals for Kids (That They’ll Actually Eat)

Post by Adrienne of Susie Makes SupperPlanning Healthy Meals for Kids (That They'll Eat)If your kids are anything like mine, they would be happy with chicken nuggets and pasta for supper every day of their lives. And if you have ever tried to feed a kid like mine homemade macaroni and cheese when he or she is expecting the orange stuff that comes out of a blue box, you know that feeding kids real food can be a challenge.

Here are a few tricks that I use when planning healthy meals for kids:

  1. Rename the dish. My aunt recently told me a story about a casserole that her mom made when my aunt and her brothers were little. The casserole was simple: noodles, ground meat, and tomato sauce. You know the casserole. If it were pasta with sauce and meatballs, each ingredient separately identifiable, the kids probably would have eaten it without complaint. The boys refused to eat this casserole. One day, my aunt’s mom told the boys that they were having cowboy food for supper. She served the same noodle, ground meat, and tomato casserole that her boys had previously refused and that night received rave reviews from her boys. A favorite was born. “Cowboy Food” was regularly requested for supper. Same dish, different name. A little creative license goes a long way and is exactly the way to get your kids to try meatballs with spaghetti squash instead of pasta or homemade macaroni and cheese. Your kids’ favorite story characters or zoo animal or game can provide wonderful inspiration for your next meal’s name.Planning Healthy Meals for Kids - Meatloaf
  1. Make it cute. Truth: anything in the shape of a cupcake or made in miniature is more appetizing to kids. I can’t explain it, I just know it is true. This concept works for homemade macaroni and cheese, tacos, and meatloaf. Using the cupcake technique allows you some creativity with your ingredients. Meatloaf cupcakes? How fun! You can even frost them with mashed potatoes and decorate them with peas. (I’ve actually done this before – without telling my kids what they were eating. The kids not only thought it was hilarious, but ate every bite.)Planning Healthy Meals for Kids - Chicken Nuggets
  2. Let your kids help you make the dish. What’s in chicken nuggets, anyway? A lot of things you probably don’t want to eat if we are talking about the frozen, shaped variety. But your kids can help you make their own chicken nuggets (and shape them, if you have an awful lot of anti-bacterial soap in your kitchen) with ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen. This trick works well with other classic kid favorites like spaghetti-os and pizza. It also works really well with new dishes like gnocchi and potpies.

Do you have any tips for updating kid favorite meals? Drop a note in the comment section with your favorite tip or requests for future posts about cooking for kids.

Adrienne is a compulsive list-maker with a very busy family and a not very clean house. She’s also a planner and a recovering perfectionist. Adrienne blogs at Susie Makes Supper, where she shows her successes and failures in the kitchen and freely gives advice on all sorts of topics.