Category Archives: Crafts

Back home again in Indiana


And now for something completely different…

I’ve not blogged in a while, but I’ve been pretty busy. Between grading papers and wedding planning, it’s been a little hectic. Also my maid of honor introduced me to Pinterest. I’d heard of it, and had seen it before, but I was reluctant to get on because I knew I’d get sucked in and it would take over. As expected it did. I found so many things I want to make. So I might start putting more artsy-fartsy things on here as well. Starting today. My goal was to make some string art. The website I found suggested using wood and nails. That sounded a little too intense so I tried with canvas and pins. This did not work at all. So I decided to just do some painting instead. It was a pretty simple easy craft, and totally could be replicated with any state. I used some paint that I had left over, but if you want it to be more professional you could use a better paint for canvas.


The idea here is that my heart’s in Indianapolis. I love this idea especially because I’ll be moving away from Indy soon and I like the thought of hanging this in my new place. I also made one as a gift for my friend who’s also moving away, but put the heart over Bloomington because she went to school there and she loves IU. I also think painting it black and white would look good. I might even make a black and yellow Pennsylvania one for my brother who’s a huge Steelers fan. Black outline, yellow heart over Pittsburgh. So many possibilities. And so easy you should do it too!!







  • Canvas
  • Sharpie Paint Pen
  • Paint
  • Paintbrush
  • Cut out of your favorite state
  • Pin




Trace the state on the canvas using the paint pen.



Put a pushpin through the city where you’re going to paint your heart. That way you will have a small pin prick that will also be geographically correct for you paint your heart. I chose Indianapolis.


Start painting around your state outline

Finished project!!



Advent Calendar of Beer!


So I know this isn’t a recipe, but I’m pretty proud of myself on this one, so I’m blogging it to share with all of you. I’m always asking people what I should get other people for Christmas. I was discussing with my friend what she was going to give her husband, and decided to steal it as a gift for my boyfriend. The trick with this one is making it before December 1st, so if you’re planning on giving this this year, get on it! I’m sure there are more efficient and better ways to go about making this, but here’s what I did…

Step 1: Acquire beer.

I decided to make a calendar of 24 days, so that meant I needed 24 different beers. First stop: Liquor Store. The liquor store definitely had 24 individual bottles of beer. Problem is, they ranged from $2.59 all the way up to $12.99 a bottle. So I had to choose wisely, otherwise this seemingly simple gift was going to cost me a small fortune. (I mean I love my boyfriend, but I’m not spending over 100 bucks on beer for him). Next I went to a few grocery stores to pick up the rest. Most grocery stores now let you pick your own six for a set price. It’s great. The trick was finding some that I knew he hadn’t already tried.

Step 2: Acquire a box

This sounds easier than it is. I thought I would just go buy a case of bottled beer and use it. Problem is, cases of bottle beer come in 18, not 24. Who wants an advent calendar that only goes up to December 18th? Pretty anticlimactic if you ask me. Luckily the Liquor store had given me a box to carry out my bottles. It wasn’t big enough. So I basically made my own box. I used the box from the liquor store and cut off one end. Then I used cardboard and foam board from other places to fill in the gaps on the bottom and sides. I also used a lot of heavy-duty packing tape. After that my box was complete!

Step 3: Create dividers

This was the easiest part of the box. I had some extra foam board so I cut it to make the dividers. I knew I wanted to have four rows of six beers. I cut three rectangles the length of the box, and then four rectangles the width of the box. Using a ruler, I divided the length rectangles into fourths and the width dividers into sixths. Then I used an exacto knife to create a slit half way up each rectangle. Then I was able to slide the rectangles together to make the dividers. These are essential so when moving the box the beers don’t clink together and break.

Step 4: Fill with beer

This was easy. Probably the easiest part of the whole ordeal. I just tried to mix them around to make in more interesting for the receiver.

If you look closely, you can see where I had to tape the box together. Also you can see the dividers I made.

Step 5: Make the lid

I used thick posterboard for this. I cut it to fit over the top of the box, then I used the packing tape to tape it onto the box. Then I measured to divide it into fourths and sixths. I used a pencil to draw the lines. Then I used an exacto-knife to cut out the doors. Make sure when you do this that you don’t actually cut along the lines you drew. You want to leave some space (about a centimeter) between the lines and the door.

Step 6: Decorate!

I would recommend covering the box with wrapping paper and then using markers or paint to decorate the top. Make sure you mix around the numbers for the doors, this makes it more interesting in my opinion. My decorating job didn’t turn out as well as I’d planned. I wanted the box to be red with gold numbers and lettering. But, painting cardboard and packing tape wasn’t as easy as I’d thought. So instead I ended up covering the box with silver ribbon and black paper. Then I painted the top silver and used puff paint to do the numbers. At least they were red and green? Sigh. I tried. Although I don’t think it mattered much to the receiver. As with people, it’s what’s inside that counts. 😉