Keeping Organized During a Move

So, I am crafty, I am great with computer “stuff” but sometimes I am lazy. When we decided to move, I had the brilliant idea to get a binder together to keep everything organized and make it easy for us to move. I tried to creat my own thing and almost immediately I was bored and frustrated and took to Etsy.com to find someone who had already prepared one. I came across PaperMousePlanners and her layouts were absolutely ADORABLE! I purchased the Instant Download Moving Planner shown in the photo below.

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Everything worked perfectly for us. There were box labels which I eneded up printing like a million sheets of and pages to help you know what is in each box and take inventory and… words just cant describe how helpful this binder was. I was able to have a place for all the houses I wanted to look at, create pro and con type of lists, have a list of items I was selling, have a sheet protector inserted into the binder to hold receipts and contracts and so much more. I even went on pinterest and found blogs offering free printables to help me organize certain things (like the pantry items and LEGOS) when we got here to the new place. A big thank you to Milou Sanders of PaperMousePlanners for creating these amazing inserts! She really does a great job. When I went to her page tonight to get the link for the printables, I found a bunch of other things that I plan on purchasing in the near future… like next week to be exact.. maybe even tonight LOL! I am the queen of midnight shopping. Below I will link some of things that I like from her shop that I plan on purchasing with a hyperlink above them for each. Happy Shopping!


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DIY Party Decor

My event planning company has a 60th birthday to do soon. I did some research and found out that the 60th birthday is the “golden birthday”. The decor for the cake table includes a 6 and a 0 that is made of the same cardboard like material as the box that I used for the card box previously. We decided to go with the gold glitter (even though it is a man’s party) because it stands out better than the gold metalic paint. The shine is perfect.

I used three different types of glitters in my glitter mix.

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The numbers came from Hobby Lobby as well as the large chunky glitter. The Recollections and other bottle are both from Michael’s craft store. The middle bottle is more of a bronze-ish type of color and not really gold but it blended really nicely with the other two. You really dont want to have just the one chunky glitter or just the one extra-fine glitter because it brings layers and makes the project look better. In my opinion any way.

I make the glitter mix with a 16oz solo cup and a small “bathroom cup” (or shot glass size) plastic cup, glossy mod podge, and the three glitters.

  1. I pour the amount of mod podge into the 16oz solo cup that I think will be enough for the project.
  2. In the bathroom cup, I only want to fill it half way. SO, I take 1/3 of each color glitter until the cup is halfway full. I put the extra-fine glitters on the bottom and the chunky glitter on the top so that when poured into the mod podge, the chunky glitter will end up at the bottom of the mix and not take over the entire mixture by sitting on the top.
  3. I stirred the mixture with an old pencil because I couldnt find a craft stick to save my life. (LOL)
  4. I use a sponge brush to paint the glue mixture on to the numbers because it doesnt soak up the product like the paint brushes do.

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Pardon the chewed up scissors in the background. I had some help with my project and she got ahold of them without me noticing obviously until it was too late.

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Long story short.. you adde a layer of the glitter mix until you have covered the places you want to be glittery and then let it dry. The first layer dries the fastest. It takes seconds… maybe 3 minutes at the most to dry. Every layer afterwards will take just a little longer to dry. You must make sure to let the layers dry before painting on the next one because if you do not, the glue will stay wet underneath and create bubbles that can be popped accidentally and then the wet glue will go all over and there will be a crater in it’s place.

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After you think you have enough layers on, you can go ahead and let it dry and at this point, I add another coat of gloss. I use Polycrylic. This not only seals the mod podge but it makes it so that water or any other elements can not damage the numbers.

 

**a lot of youtubers and DIY people will tell you to put down a layer of mod podge and then sprinkle glitter and then cover with another layer of mod podge. I dont subscribe to this method. It is much cleaner and smoother to mix the glitter into the mod podge before painting it on.

 

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These are my numbers still in the process of curing. I will post a photo to this blog post after the party with what they look like all set up! Have a great day!

Glitter 

Sponge Brushes

Glossy Mod Podge

Popsicle Sticks

Solo Cups

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Trying to Grow

Recently, I have been learning a lot about how to grow my blog and how to help raise money to take care of my son as well as myself. One thing that someone suggested to me was Patreon. I met her on youtube. She told me that the thing that she uses to help pay for her supplies is her fans on Patreon send donations. She told me that I should give it a try and see how it works out. I was never sure about the crowd funding thing and was a little unsure about signing up… but i figured I would give it a go. I have created a patreon account and it just launched today!

https://www.patreon.com/crafting4aliving

That is my page link above. I am sure you have noticed my amazon links on some posts, I am also aware that some of the “click here” links are not properly functioning. I do apologize. Those are my affiliate links. I would appreciate it if you wanted to purchase anything that I have linked on my blog if you used my affiliate link. I get 10% commission on what ever it is that you purchase and it is of no extra charge to you. It helps my family out!

I have created a facebook group where I would like to add my followers to gain friends, to teach you how to do things as far as crafts and DIYs, and to just get to know people from all over. To be added to my facebook group, the requirement is $1 patreon donation. HOWEVER, if you are a user of my amazon affiliate links or you share around my amazon affiliate link (by copying the link to one of the products) and it is used please contact me and let me know that you have done so and I can add you into the facebook group as well. There is no reason to leave you out!

I appreciate all of my readers whether you make donations or not! Thank you for your time! I love sharing my stories and projects with you!

Have You Ever Heard of Shopkick?

Today, I mentioned Shopkick, a phone app, in my last post. I figured that I would get on here and tell you all about this wonderful hidden treasure so that you can earn free gift cards too! I am going to tell you all about it and if you would like to earn some free kicks for accepting my invite leave your email addresses below in the comments. If not, just download the app and sign up! 

 

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Shopkick is a phone app that you can download and earn free gift cards. You can earn “kicks” by walking into select stores, by making purchases for certain items in select stores, OR by scanning certain items in select stores. Let’s get into the details of the information I just provided.

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WALKING INTO STORES: 

You must have data connection either via wifi in the store or on your own cellular data. You must have bluetooth enabled on your phone before you walk into the store. When you get into the store’s front door, you can move out of the way of course but you must open the app there. Participating store have a frequency signal at the entrance that allows for Shopkick to verify that you are in fact at the location you claim to be. The frequency is picked up on the bluetooth connection. Shopkick will know what store you are in and will grant you the “Walk In Kicks” for the store that you are in if any are avaiable.

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SCANS:

To get kicks for scans, you must first make sure that the store you are in has this option enabled. You can go around the store and scan the barcode of the items listed in the scans section of the app and then the points will upload immediately to your account. These items can only be scanned so many times so if you see them as an option in another store, once you have scanned them X number of times, they may show disabled in another location even if you never scanned them in that store before. 

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PURCHASES:

You can get scans for purchases in certain stores as well. You will see the icons displayed on each store pertaining to what is available there. You will see a list of items at some stores that say if you purchase these items, you will get X amount of kicks per item. In other stores you get so many kicks per $1 you spend and it doesnt matter what you purchase. The only thing about getting kicks this way is that they do not immediately go into your account. You must wait 30 days for the kicks to be awarded to you. I think they do it this way because people were purchasing items to get the kicks and then returning them once the kicks were available to them. You also must make purchases via credit and not debit to receive the kicks and link the cards you will be using to your Shopkick account. I am not including a photo of this screen because I dont want my card info to be released into the interwebs but you can find it on your own. 

There are also little ways within the app itself that you can earn kicks without even going to a single store. If you plan to earn all your kicks this way… it will literally take you FOREVER. You will not have much success. You can go into the “Discover” tab at the bottom and there will be a bunch of tiles. You will learn that there are some tiles that you dont even need to bother with such as the tiles outlined in white or the recipe tiles (unless you want the recipe of course) and the tiles that are product adds. These tiles have no secret kicks in them. The other tiles sometimes have hidden bubbles at the bottom of the list that you can click to get 1 kick added to your account for each bubble you find. There are some tiles that have commercials (an actual short commercial video) that will say something to the effect of “watch for 10 kicks” or “watch for 5 kicks” that if you watch will award you 10 or 5 kicks! 

The first image here has a small blue bubble at the bottom that you would  click to reveal 1 kick as shown in the second image. The last image here shows the video commercials I have watched them already so it does not display the “watch for 10 kicks” like it had previously.

 

More info you need to know:

There is a tab labeled “Stores” that allows you to see all the stores in your area that participate with Shopkick. If you notice underneath the name of the store there is a row of icons and numbers. The little man means that you can get kicks for walking in, the barcode means that you get kicks for scanning products, and the receipt means that you get kicks for purchasing certain products. Sometimes in some stores, it does not matter what item you purchase and you will get kicks per $1 spent like I mentioned before.

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When you sign up and start to make your account you can pick what reward you want. Pictured below are some options that you can choose from but there are many more. Each reward will tell you how many kicks you need to earn to redeem this reward. There are also more tiers within these rewards. When I show the next photo I will explain this a little more.

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You will have this screen that I have taken a photo of that will show you how many kicks you have. The circle will fill in white with your progress. You will notice that I have completed the requirements for a $10 Sephora gift card but my goal is the $25 step up. The amount of kicks you need for the step up is 6,250. I have a reminder here inside the circle that I need to get 2,500 kicks in order to earn the $10 gift card but now with my current balance I only need 2,132 to get the $25 gift card. If you were to click on each of the options of prizes, there is a row of amounts within and it tells you what you need to earn each different amount. As you see in the photo below, there are a lot of things to click on this screen. You can change the reward that you have chosen if you decide that you dont want it anymore. You can see your kick activity and see what you have earned. Also, for the purchases and kicks per $1 rewards, this is where you will see when your kicks will be released to you. When you complete your kick goal you should always redeem the reward if that is the one you really want so you can go on to continue earning. The kick goals that you have claimed will appear in the “My Rewards” section. Mine shows (0) because I have already used the one $25 that I have redeemed.

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This is a real thing. This does take some time. This will benefit you! I promise that if you open your app and earn your kicks that this app will bring you happiness! I couldnt believe that it really worked. I was so scared that when I walked into Sephora and tried to make a purchase with this gift card that it was not going to work and it did. It was the best feeling ever. It’s like you get something back for shopping. You dont even have to make purchases to walk into stores and scan and get walk in points! I recommend Shopkick to anyone who lives in Walmart or Target because there are always various kicks to be found there. On holiday weekends they try to drive business to stores so some stores will offer a higher amount of walk in kicks or higher kicks per $1 spent and so on. Always check the app and you will do great. I had to put a note on my car that reminds me to open my Shopkick app when I get to a store because I cant tell you how many times I forget until I have made it back home and miss out on kicks. It was so easy for me to get up to the 4,000+ kicks that I have gotten. If you get your family and friends to sign up, you each get 250 kicks for doing nothing but signing up! There is one catch. If you sign up a lot of people at once and they all join, they will put a restriction on. It will say that you will earn the 250 kicks for signing them up as soon as they open their app and use it for the first time. I believe that when I signed my uncle up, it wanted him to go to any available store and scan a product before it would release the kicks to us. This is just so you are not in your home with various devices creating accounts and signing up and cheating the system.

You can look all over the internet and there are people who try to cheat the system and try to get kicks from home. Recording the sounds at the entry way of the store for the app to pick up and fake codes to enter in and so forth. If you are successful enough to get these to work, after all the updating to prevent against this that they have done, and you get caught.. they will disable your account and block you from being able to recreate another account.

 

Shopkick wisely and dont ruin it for the rest of us.. it has changed so much since I first signed up. At first you could scan products in your home that you had that were on the list and the “discover: tab was different.. it has come a long way. ENJOY!

Build Yourself Back Up When It’s All Falling Down…

What do you do when you find something you are good at and put your all into it and spend so much money to see it prosper and work so hard to see it grown and set a date to put your hard work on display for everybody and price it too low because what it is really worth… nobody would pay because we are all cheap asses. Then the day comes and you spent even more time and money to make displays and set up and even be there in the first place and… nobody wants to pay the lower prices either and you totally bomb. Your confidence that you barely had to start with is crushed, your time and money wasted… everything is in bins and piles in your garage and you are back to square one. Still stuck in a dead end job that is getting you nowhere and making you absolutely miserable, no step closer to moving forward in your life, and still no escape route.

 

Does anybody have an answer to this? LOL. Sadly, this is my life. I am in this place in my life. I built what I thought was going to be a lucrative and fun business and it has blown up in my face like a volcano. I spent so much time buying fabric and ribbon and thread and everything that goes with it and display stuff and I sold three bows and three bibs and two outfits out of the 100s I have made and all the stuff is sitting in my garage.. wasting space along with all the other stuff that it wasted. I wish I could say that my life was put together and that I had all the answers and all the ingredients to the recipes but in the long run, I am running short on my life goals.

I decided to finally (after almost a year) sit down and take pictures of every bib I made and upload them to the etsy store that I created so long ago that sat empty in preparation for this sale that bombed so hard. Long story short I am trying to make lemonade out of lemons. The goal for this blog after all is to help me sell my crafts and such so that I can quit this job and still bring in the income that I need to keep my family afloat. The moral of this sob story is that even when you have your heart broken and dreams crushed, you have only failed if you stop trying. Do you think that Rome was built in a day? Do you think that the first person who decided to take power got everyone to follow them the moment he decided that he was going to be a leader? Do you think that the first time you try something it is guaranteed to be a success? Absolutely NOT!

Not only does this apply to my business venture and the fact that Tuesday is the motivational day of the week for me, it applies to anything in life. When it all falls down, take a moment to assess the damage and build it back up. It took me over a year to actually add items to the etsy shop that I created which you can find HERE. Things will eventually get better. I dont care what religion you actually practice… we each have a God figure. You will never be given more than you can handle. Your time in the spotlight will come which is why it is always important to never give up when things get hard. I have found a photo that matches this situation perfectly and it always had a place in the back of my mind when I am going through something troubling.

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The man on the bottom of this photo is over worked and tired of trying. He literally has to hack away at the wall for like 5 more minutes and the diamonds will come tumbling down on his head yet he has given up because it was hard. The man on the top is clearly determined and is so far but so close with no end in sight… he will be the one to reach success. The man on the bottom will continue all his life in this pattern where he begins something and then gives up when it gets hard OR he will never begin anything again for fear of defeat AGAIN. Little does he know that he was his own saboteur.

Remember this photo next time you are feeling down. Every day when I go to work after being passed over for two promotions.. and other lengthy drama-like details, I think of this picture. Maybe my time with the diamonds is coming? You should think of life this way too.. I promise it will make you feel so much better to wake up with good thoughts on your mind even if your day goes sour afterwards. You will be more tempted to make positive choices and decisions to lead you in a better direction.

 

Have a good night! See you soon!! ❤

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Motivational Thoughts…

I have always wondered why I can not follow through with things. Then one day it hit me. I have no self confidence, I have no self esteem, I have no faith in my abilities. I have been raised to just let life wash over me like a tidal wave and take it.. drowning and choking on sea life all the while. I know better as an adult who has been through so much but sometimes it is hard to pull your mind from that dark place. Sometimes you cant see the light at the end of the tunnel. Sometimes those things you know you can do.. seem like you can never figure them out…. Dont listen to those voices.

I recently started a hobby that I posted a sneak peak sort of tease blog about called Pour Painting. I have always loved mixed media abstract art and I finally learned a little something. I looked at my finished pieces and thought to myself “wow I cant believe I made this”… WHAT?! Who says that? Like I am not good enough to do something like that? Have mercy… Please if you ever feel down on yourself and like you are not good enough, dont listen to the voices that whisper that you can never do it, that you wont make it, that you cant get it done, that it wont happen… dont listen

 

You are strong, you are powerful, you are driven, and you will go far!

 

If nobody else tells you about your worth, you can meet me here at least once a week foe me to tell you that you are somebody and you mean something to somebody.. without my son, I would have never had this person to tell me these things in my life so I would like to pass it on!

 

Have a great day! Smile.. its beautiful on you!

 

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The Dirty Pour

I have always wanted to learn how to do paintings with different mediums. Using textures, colors, oils, glazes, varnishes and so on. I have always wanted to learn how to do things with paint.

Long story short… I learned a thing or two. I have always had a LARGE collection of acrylic paints so I wanted to learn how to use them. I found a few Youtube videos and learned a little bit that turned into a new found obsession! Acrylic Pour Painting is so fun! It allows you to be creative with mixing colors and the after designs etc.

Because I make a living off of the projects that I do, I will not give away all the sneaky details but you can go just as I have done and learn all about it on Youtube! I can say it takes a few times to perfect the formulas but it is worth it!

 

Here is what you will need to get started:

Basically you have white and black as your top colors. All that you mix into them is the Pouring Medium and no silicone oil. The other colors you select should be mixed with pouring medium before the silicone oil is added. You want small cells and a lot of them? Mix slow and only a few times. Want big cells and only a few of them? Mix vigorously. Please refer to Youtube for more information.. I would love to tell you more about it but I have so much in store that I just cant share yet.. #teasing 🙂