DIY Christmas Countdown

Christmas Countdown DIY 1 DIY Christmas Countdown

My oldest daughter is getting big enough to really start counting down the days until Christmas. And to be honest with you, I’m so excited about her excitement that I’m counting them down myself.

It’s such a simple thing to get excited about, but it makes the waiting for Christmas to come a little more exciting. ‘

I’ve seen the little blocks that count down the days. I’ve seen the little advent calendars and all the other little ideas, but none really scream exciting to me. Sure, some have little candies and treats every time you open a door, but I remember caring more about that when I was a kid than really knowing how many days there were until Christmas.

So I set out on a DIY mission to make a countdown for my girls. One that hopefully would last for years to come. We don’t have a mantle or fireplace. Which I’d say that a lot of people can relate to this, which makes hanging stockings and garland a little difficult. So I made my own way of hanging this thing and here’s how I made it.

Christmas Countdown DIY 2 DIY Christmas Countdown

I started with an extra piece of wood that I had in the garage. I don’t know it’s exact measurements, but it was about 3 feet long.

I spray painted the entire board white, then used painter’s tape to create stripes. I then spray painted it red which left red and white stripes like a candy cane.

Then, using the same method as my DIY Mug Holder for transfering text to wood, I added the Christmas Countdown words to the board. The white words really got lost, so I added little red polka dots to help it stand out a little.

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Next came the numbers.

I am NOT a sewer (yet). Though I may someday learn, right now I’m sticking like glue to my hot glue gun. The numbers were way simpler than they look. Plus they only cost me about $3.

I purchased about 4 pieces of red and white felt at Walmart for $.23 each. I also purchased a couple of fat quarters of fabric for $.97 each. I cut out the squares and hot glued the fabric squares to the felt squares to make sure the numbers had good support.

For the actual numbers, I simply printed off the numbers in the font and size that I liked and then tape them to the felt. I then just cut them out using the paper numbers as a template. Voila! I had numbers.

I then hot glued them to the fabric and boom they were done. The clothes pins were $1 at Dollar Tree! Even the cute garland was a buck.

Christmas Countdown DIY 5 DIY Christmas Countdown

I debated over and over about how many hooks I would want for hanging the garland. I didn’t want it to look too tight, but I didn’t want it to be too lose either. So I ended up with 5 hooks (leftover from another project that just screw right into the board), but only used 3 total. I like the looser look.

Christmas Countdown DIY 7 DIY Christmas Countdown

Then as we began to take off numbers in our countdown, I realized we had nowhere to store the numbers that were coming off. I glued to ends of some leftover felt together to make this little pouch. I added some little pieces of fabric cut out into droplets to embellish it a little.

Voila! A numbers pouch to keep up with them once they come off.

Christmas Countdown DIY 3 DIY Christmas Countdown

Each morning, Addie is absolutely ecstatic about taking off a number. This morning she said “Momma, there are only EIGHT days until Christmas!”

It’s awesome to have something that we can use over and over again and know that I created it! Anybody can make this and I hope that this gives you ideas if you’ve considered making something like this for your home!

Does your family have a countdown that you use each year?


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Baby Shower On A Budget

Baby Shower On A Budget 15 Baby Shower On A Budget

I have been dying to share this stuff with you for weeks, but just haven’t had a moment to sit down and get it all together. Is it just me or is time beginning to move faster and faster? I barely have time to finish a thought before I move on to my next one. And with the holidays quickly approaching , things are sure to get even faster.

One of my dear friends is expecting a little bundle of joy next month and when it came to her baby shower, I knew that I wanted to be the one to throw it. This, ahem, was my very first shower to throw. I’ve helped out with others and attended plenty, but I’ve never had one here at my home. So naturally, I wanted it to be perfect.

Well….as perfect as one can be with an 18 month-old and 5 year-old running around while preparing. I can’t complain. They were both angels the entire time that I put this together. And thankfully, another friend of mine helped out with food and planning so it wasn’t ALL me. Sheesh, I think I’d go nuts if it was!

So I thought I’d share with you a few of the frugal touches that I used to make this shower special for my friend. At this point, I’ve only included pictures, but I do have some pictures for a tutorial if anyone is interested. Just let me know!

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The first thing that I did was to make up these adorable little food tags and cupcake flags. SUPER cheap to make. Don’t you DARE go and buy them! Especially if you’re a scrapper, chances are that you have some extra scrapbook paper. And that, my friends, is a party planner’s best friend.

I did buy a new set of scrapbook paper with assorted colors for $5. It covered the entire party. I was able to make markers for all of the dishes and snacks along with the super cute cupcake flags.

I simply printed out the words with cute font on my printer, cut them out, and attached them with tape to the scrapbook paper. The food markers were folded in half so they stood up.

All in all this only cost me the $5 for the paper.

Baby Shower On A Budget 3 Baby Shower On A Budget

I even made a cute little tag for the party games that we played. I used an old pickle jar to hold the words and just tied a cute little bow around it to dress it up.

This didn’t cost me anything!

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I picked up some hot pink tissue paper at Walmart for $.97 and made up a few of these tissue flowers to make a few decorations. It looked really cute attached to the punch.

Baby Shower On A Budget 2 Baby Shower On A Budget

Ok, don’t judge me but I had a lot of time on my hands. My husband went out of town and I ended up writing a poem.

Yeah, yeah, I’m a little overachiever.

It was SO cute though. I dropped into Dollar Tree and got a frame that I painted with pink paint that I already had. Printed the poem out and attached to scrapbook paper to make a nice addition to the shower table.

$1 added to the cost.

Baby Shower On A Budget 1 Baby Shower On A Budget

I found a tutorial on how to make a brown bag flower decoration on Pinterest and I HAD to try it. I always have brown bags on-hand.

In like 5 minutes flat, I had this darling flower that I simply spray painted and added a little glitter to. I tied it the ceiling and voila!

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At some point in time, I have become obsessed with food in jars. I know I’m a little late on that, but I’m only human and my brain takes a little longer to process than most. 😉

I made cupcakes regularly in a muffin pan. Then I cut them in half placing the bottom layer in the bottom of a 4 oz jar. Added frosting, then added the 2nd layer. I then topped them once again with more frosting. These were homemade devil’s food and vanilla buttercream cupcakes and they were AMAZING.

Don’t the flags add a nice touch?

I did buy the jars just for this event, but they will be around for use later on so I’m considering them to pay for themselves. But since I did buy them, we’ll add $7.97 to our total.

Baby Shower On A Budget 11 Baby Shower On A Budget

These White Chocolate Covered Strawberry Wafers were so easy, but looked like a million bucks. I bought them at Dollar Tree. I tinted some white chocolate chips pink and drizzled it along with some sprinkles all over. Snazzy huh?

$2.29 was all that they cost me.

Baby Shower On A Budget 10 Baby Shower On A Budget

With all the scrapbook paper that I had, I knew I wanted to serve some things in cones. I simply rolled up the scrapbook paper cut to size and then taped them in place. The box they are standing up in? Oh, it’s the box from the 4 oz mason jars! I used a knife to poke holes in it so the cones could stand up.

I made up some popcorn that I already had and drizzled in pink tinted white chocolate to it all. It came out to be super tasty Pink Popcorn! I even added pink sprinkles too.

Total cost for this was $1.29 for the white chocolate chips. Aldi has the BEST price y’all!

Baby Shower On A Budget 9 Baby Shower On A Budget

I made these mini cupcake bouquets with the help from Dollar Tree. I got 2 vases and used 2 foam flower arrangement thingies (that’s a technical term) to place toothpicks in. The bottom is a couple of small pieces of tulle that I had on-hand to dress them up. I then made my cupcakes and stuck them all over onto the toothpicks.

I also added a few pieces of tissue here and there to fill it out.

Total cost for these was $4.

Baby Shower On A Budget 8 Baby Shower On A Budget

Of all the elements to this shower, THESE were my favorite. I saw a picture of these somewhere out in cyberspace recently and decided to give them a go. Without even glancing at the directions, I was able to whip up 25 of these in no time at all.

All you need is a package of napkins (your choice of color) and the appopriate amount of safety pins. SO easy and they make any treat that you’re serving look completely adorable. Obviously the smaller your napkins, the smaller your little diapers so buy the size according to what you are going to serve in them.

These also make awesome party favor bags!

Total cost for these? $2.

Baby Shower On A Budget 12 Baby Shower On A Budget

I also made a small diaper cake as you see in the upper right that was about $6 for the diapers. I made a coffee filter flower for the top. And the little name plaque with baby’s name on it was just $.97 at Walmart! I had the paint already.

Many of the little cupcake and serving stands that you see I made out of saucers and dessert cups that I hot-glued to each other. I get a lot of those materials at thrift stores and then paint to make them cute. So affordable and look so fancy.

All in all, what you see here cost me only around $30. And every bit of it was special because it was made with love and thought. That’s always the best gift!

What about you? Are you throwing a baby shower soon? Have any frugal baby shower tips to share?!


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DIY Large Graphic Wall Sign

Graphic Wall Sign 2 DIY Large Graphic Wall Sign

Since my hubby was out of town for a few days, I must admit that I’ve been quite lax on cooking. It’s nice to take a break from it every now and then. In fact, our meals for the last few days have been mainly out of the most clever invention ever…..the microwave. I’m really not sure where I would be without it.

I’m back up and cooking now so you know I’ve got some good recipes on the way. But for now, I have a really cool DIY project for you that my husband and I did one weekend. I LOVE our sign! I look at it every morning when I wake up and every night when I go to bed. Shoot, I look at it when I walk in the room and when I’m walking out.

It demands attention. I love statement pieces like that.

I wanted to make one of these as cheap as I possibly could because 1) I’m just a cheapo and 2) because I like a challenge. I priced a lot of the materials at a few different stores. My main concern was the lettering. I wanted letters that weren’t too boring and I knew that I needed a lot of each. To my surprise, a pack with just 4 E’s was $8 bucks! And that wasn’t even a cute font either. There was no way that I was going to pay $40 for just the letters.

So I opened up Microsoft Word and went to work. 🙂

You may remember me mentioning one of my favorite Bible verses when I shared my Random Acts of Kindness. If not, here it is again.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith,gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.

– Galatians 5:22-23

Those words pack a wallop don’t they? Can you imagine practicing each one every single day? Seems to me that I need a reminder because it’s just not easy. So I decided that those words would make a great sign for our bedroom wall. Here’s how we did it…

Graphic Wall Sign 3 DIY Large Graphic Wall Sign

It all began with a very large piece of untreated white wood from Lowes. This one cost me approximately $13. It was a HUGE board and I even had 8 inches cut off of it to make it more rectangular.

Graphic Wall Sign 4 DIY Large Graphic Wall Sign

Then we used a $3 can of white spray paint to be the base of the sign. It’s essentially what the color of the letters will be when we’re done. I considered using latex paint to do this project, but in the end I figured that spray paint would be quicker with more coverage.

See that arrow there on the right of the picture? That is where the newspaper became attached to hubby’s foot because he stepped in wet spray paint. Moral of the story? Don’t spray in bare feet. 🙂

Graphic Wall Sign 7 DIY Large Graphic Wall Sign

I didn’t take any pictures of the next step because it wasn’t a happy time. Cutting out a billion paper letters including many with holes is not fun. I’ll spare you the sweet talk and be honest with you. It’s work, but it’s cheaper and highly worth saving $40. At least to me and my cheap brain.

So we cut out the letters and taped each one down using only tape on the backside of the letters. Sorry that this picture is so dark. By the time that we got the letters done it was dark. I knew this wasn’t exactly the best way to do it, but I also knew that I could try to make it work. Where there’s a will, there’s a way you know. 😉

Graphic Wall Sign 5 DIY Large Graphic Wall Sign

The next morning, I got out my 2nd can of $4 spray paint from Lowes and went to town going over the letters. I loved this color. It Valspar Satin Interior called Thorny Brush. Perfect color for my bedroom. As I was spraying, I could tell that the spray paint was going under my tape a bit. There was definitely more work to be done…

Graphic Wall Sign 6 DIY Large Graphic Wall Sign

Here’s a close-up of what the letters turned out like once the paint was dry. See the spots where the tape was? It really bothered me so I went over all of the letters with a small brush and some leftover white paint that I had.

Graphic Wall Sign 1 DIY Large Graphic Wall Sign

That wasn’t a very fun process either. I totally forgot to take a picture of it. But I did remember to take a finished product shot! Here’s what it looks like all pretty and on the wall. We used plain jane screws to attach it straight to the wall. We’ve been having things with chain from the ceilings around here lately so that crossed our mind. But I didn’t want the sign just hanging and knocking against the wall, so we went with the easy route.

We aren’t professionals by any means so I’m sure that most could probably make theirs look a lot better. But for only about $20 and a little hard work, it’s a beautiful reminder on our bedroom wall! We LOVE it!

What do YOU think of it? I’d love to hear!


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