Sunday, December 2, 2012

DIY Christmas Countdown

I am often inspired by one of my favorite blogs, A Beautiful Mess. The blogsphere and Pinterest have so many good ideas...too many. I have a fantastic variety of Pinterest boards, but you simply can't do every great project and recipe you gather on your pinboards (sorry, quinoa salad with butternut squash, dried cranberries & pepitas and Martha Stewart's felted basket from old sweaters, but I don't see me taking you on anytime soon).

However, there are a couple projects/recipes that I have been inspired to actually do more than pin from A Beautiful Mess, including these popcorn balls, this dairy-free ice cream, these sea salt chocolate chip cookies (I made them gluten free and my future brother-in-law loved them), this green smoothie challenge, this sushi salad, this spicy sweet potato soup, a holiday wreath, a take on this Instagram wall canvas art, and I am currently gathering materials to make this scrapbook. Wow, that was quite a list. I'm a super productive person (lie).

My favorite project from this fancy blog was the DIY Advent Tree. I've been very much in the holiday spirit this year (not having to work for the soulless retail demons from hell in a continuous loop of bad Christmas music helps). I loved the idea of having little treats everyday and a countdown to Christmas. Here was my process:

1. Show the picture of the completed project to my dad.

2. Have him do all the work.

This heavy lifting by my dad is becoming a theme. Next on my to do list: figure out how to use power tools. Can you blame me for taking advantage of another's skillz and well-equipped shop?

Not playin'

We He chopped up a wooden pallet we had in the barn and cut them to decreasing length for the "arms" of the tree.

We sanded them. I was going for rustic, not splintery.

Let's make this a little more tidy.

After sanding the pieces, we attached them to the "trunk" with a power drill (used the original holes) and Ta Da!

So, I didn't make the frame by myself, but the treats were all my idea. Since it is no fun to open an advent calendar all by yourself, I tailored these to open with the bf. Some days have candy (Kit Kats, Reeses, the works), some have little projects (iron on fabric crayons), some have silly items (stick on googly eyes), and many have "coupons" for activities like making salty-sweet popcorn and watching a Christmas episode of the The Office. I put the treats in simple white lunch bags, marked the bags in a countdown to Christmas, and attached them with pink and red tacks (required a hammer).

I'm pleased with the results. It's not as fancy as the one featured on A Beautiful Mess, but I had a great time making it and gathering the little presents. Looking forward to have a fun little gift to open everyday!

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