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Activities | The Green Beagle - Part 2

Conch Shell Succulents

Conch Shell Succulents

Conch Shell Succulents

 

 

I was looking for some summer crafts to do since we decided against our garden this year as our outdoor fuzzy friends refuse to even give the garden a chance and everything we have tried doesn’t keep them out. I still love me some greenery and didn’t want to slack while the weather is so nice. I have been seeing succulents and succulent projects all over the place.  After much searching I have found a project that I love love love!!
Since it is summer and I know everyone knows at least one person who goes to the beach regularly and collects shells why not make great use of them. You have used sea shells as decorations before but why not as a planter right? This is an excellent way to upcycle! You can give the the conch shell planters away as gifts, do it as a party craft or even save it for next school year for a craft project. Conch shell planters can make beautiful decorations for inside or outside of your home. You can brighten up your office even! Here is all you have to do:
1. get and clean a conch shell
2. buy a pot or if you already have a pot of succulents you can use them
3. spoon

Make sure your conch shell is clean and big enough to give your succulent room to breath. You can really use any plant you want if succulents aren’t your thing.  I am really into the look of succulents lately here in NY you don’t really see them very often as decor.  I really like the look of them and there happens to be a wide variety to work with. Use your spoon to gently dig the plant out by the roots.  Once the roots and plant are out add a little soil to the bottom of the shell to make sure the roots will be covered.  Add the plant then the rest of the soil.  Make sure the soil and plant are packed tight enough to not fall out and there you have it! Your conch shell planter is ready.  I have seen some crafts where you can add wire or twine to hang the planter which is also a super cute idea!

 

Rainforest In A Jar

Rainforest In a Jar

Rainforest In a Jar

 

I have been seeing home made terrariums and succulent wreaths and the like I saw this and thought this was a perfect craft for the home. It is a learning experience and looks pretty awesome too. Many of the materials used for this project can be found in your home with the exception of the plants which is a great way to use up odds and ends of gardening materials and containers.

 

 

 

 

Materials:

  • Glass container with a top and an opening wide enough to fit your hand into
  • Pea gravel or aquarium gravel
  • Activated charcoal (available at gardening stores)
  • Potting soil mix
  • Selection of small houseplants (the one above includes a prayer plant, a button fern, a Persian shield, an aluminum plant, and a miniature African violet)
  • Spray bottle

Instructions
1. Place a 1- to 2-inch layer of the gravel in the container, then sprinkle on a thin layer of the activated charcoal.
2.Top this with a layer (from 2 inches to as much as one fourth of the height of the terrarium) of potting soil.
3.To add the plants, first scoop out holes for planting, then take the plants from their pots and carefully remove any excess soil from their roots.
4.Set the plants in their holes, then gently pack the soil around each one.
5.Lightly mist the plants with a spray bottle.
6. Replace the jar’s lid and set the rain forest in a bright spot away from direct sunlight. Your indoor garden may never need watering, but check it every few weeks and add more water by lightly spritzing the plants with the spray bottle if the soil feels dry.
7.If heavy condensation forms inside the glass, temporarily lift the cover to let some of the moisture escape.

Shop The Rainforest Site

Glitter-ize Old Glass

Glitterize Your Old Glass

Glitterize Your Old Glass

 

 

 

Pinterest is at it again with awesome things for me to do! I found this awesome craft that can turn any boring old Glass it to something amazing!!!! It may just be me that thinks everything is better with glitter but I cannot help but be distracted by shiny things.  It really is a curse.  Anywho, I am pretty sure that everyone has some old glasses, mirrors or serving trays that they would like to spruce up.  This is a great way to make something old look new! Here is how:

Supplies:
Clean Glass or Glasses
Mod Podge Matte Finish
Glitter
Painter’s Tape (You might be able to use masking tape but I know sometimes it leaves a residue and you cannot put these glasses in the dishwasher after the glitter has been applied.)
Paint brushes (any sizes and tips are up to you as it will be your design)
Sheet or cover (to keep glitter from getting all over the place)
Large canister or plate (to place the glitter in while applying it to the glass)

Directions:

1. Put the painter’s tape around the areas you do not want to glitter. Make your own design! Get creative.

2. Use your paint brushes to add Mod Podge to the areas you do want to glitter. Nothing has to be perfect so do what you want with it.

3. Place your sheet or cover down before glittering so it can catch any spillage.

4. You can either sprinkle the glitter over the Mod Podged area and put a canister underneath it so you can save any unused glitter or fill a canister or plate with glitter to roll the Mod Podged area in. Either way is good. I personally like to roll mine in the glitter to make sure the entire surface is covered.

5. Let the glass set for a few hours to make sure everything has dried.

6. Remove painters tape and excess glitter.

You can use this concept on many old smooth surfaces. The glasses are not meant to be put in the dishwasher however so be careful what you decide to decorate.

Egg-cellent Easter Craft

Easter Egg Garland

Easter Egg Garland

 

 

I found this craft on Pinterest…yes, I know you are shocked but I figured this could come in handy for a few different reasons besides some pretty garland. I wanted to green it up just a bit.  You can make less disposable items to use for decorations year round or even just for multiple Easters.

 

Supplies:

Non Toxic Eco Paste (the original craft calls for liquid starch and flour)
Water
Pastel Hemp Cord (or any ribbons/thread/string you might have at home)
Shallow bowl for dipping string
Biodegradable Balloons (or regular balloons if you have them at home)

 

Directions:

1. Put eco-paste and water in a shallow bowl and mix

2. Blow up balloons to desired sizes.

3. Place string carefully into bowl and either coil the string and press into sticky mixture but keep your hands on the end of the string so you can find it easily.

4. Wrap the string around your balloon in the desired patter/shapes. Make sure to wipe off excess mixture so it doesn’t dry that way on your string.

5. Once finished wrapping the balloons find a place where they can sit and dry undisturbed. Wait at least 4 hours to make sure they are completely dry.

6. Pop your balloons! Then you can string them on a garland, place them in bowls or hide them around the house!

These eggs will last for quite awhile and can be kept around for decoration long after Easter is over. You can put candy and toys in them carefully and use them as gifts. There is alot to be done with these eggs.

Fancy Rocks

Fancy Rocks
Fancy Rocks

 

 

The warm weather is here and if you are looking for something to craft for the kiddos or a party activity even a school craft here you go! Get a hold of as many rocks as you can (or tell the kids to bring there own cleaned rocks) and go to town. You know there are little tidbits of craft materials you have that you have been longing to finish up and rocks are the perfect small crafts to do just that. You can use paint, glitter, ribbon, feathers, buttons sequins, anything! You can turn this craft into beach fun too. While at the beach collect shells, rocks and whatever else you can get your hands on even sand to be decorated. You can use the finished product to decorate your home with. You can make garlands, decorate the inside of bowls or vases even attach to old picture frames and hand on your walls.  I personally love Owls which is why I chose these designs but you can decorate your rocks anyway you want.  You can theme them for holidays or for gifts.

Shabby Chic Wine Bottle

Shabby Chic Wine Bottle

 

 

I never like to get rid of glass bottles and jars at home because I know they could be used for something else. Last night I was going through and organizing all of my crafting supplies and thought why not decorate some of them for funzies. I have been looking to do more crafting and send some gifts out anyway so this is a great way to reuse things I have around the house. This is also an excellent way to make a dent in my glass collection sitting in my basement. I used some ribbon, buttons, paper flowers and hot glue to attach everything and I think it looks pretty cute! If you don’t have a craft collection at home or don’t stock pile odds and ends like i do you want to decorate your own below are some links to where I got some of the stuff you see on my bottle:

Old broken or unused jewelry and hair accessories
Rags that are clean
Wrapping Paper or paper you have at home
Paper Flower Assortment
Buttons
Old Pins and Brooches
Bottle Caps
Ribbon
Glitter
Die cuts

The possibilities are endless! This is a great party craft for kids or scouting. You can even go natural and get leaves, twigs rocks, sea shells, sand anything! The Shabby Chic bottles make for great gifts or even something new to spruce up your house!

The Kitchen Owl

Owl Kitchen Art

Owl Kitchen Art

 

 

 

As usual Pinterest has blown my mind! In my quest to find crafts for items that would otherwise be recycled or thrown out I found these crafts that use jar lids, pot tops,strainers, forks, spoons, bottle caps, whatever!! I am in love with this! The Kitchen Owl makes for a great housewarming gift or rainy day craft for students. The Kitchen Owl is the perfect way to really implement the ideas of Reduce, Recycle, & Reuse.  Think of all of the things that would have otherwise been thrown out. Talk about another man’s trash is another mans treasure!  This just goes to show that you really can reuse almost anything if you put your mind to it creatively. 
I found this at the perfect time because while reorganizing my kitchen I put aside a bunch of kitchen items that really aren’t so usable anymore and should be recycled or things we had a bunch of that we didn’t need. I cannot wait to break open that box and get started on all the fun animals that can be made. You can probably do bunnies, kittens even dogs. Get creative you can add other things to the kitchen craft they don’t have to all be metal. Use glitter or paint and make them colorful. Add stickers or jewels to them.

Don’t Throw Away Your Old CD’s

Don't Throw Away Your Old CD's

Don't Throw Away Your Old CD's

I have been cleaning out my house alot lately trying to organize and possibly upcycle things in my house I never use anymore. The other day I found a huge binder full of old CD’s I haven’t used in forever since I put all the music on my iPod. I didn’t want to throw them away as I had literally hundreds but I wasn’t sure how to make the best use of them. No one wanted them of course so I had to figure out something awesome to do with them. You see upcycled CD’s online and in stores often so I figured why can’ t I do the same. Here are some things I found online that I thought were cute.

1. The obvious use them as coasters. Glue either felt or some other cute fabric to it and you have automatic free coasters for your home. They make a super cute house warming gift and you can even decorate them if you want to add some personal flare.

2. Party decoration. Make flashy garland out of them for an event or even as permanent decor for your home. If you or maybe your child is a music lover why not string together some of their fave CD’s together and hang them from the ceiling or around the room as a border.

3. Make it art! Have unused frames at home? Take some CDs that are special to you and decorate them and hang them on the wall. This is also a perfect gift to give to someone that appreciates music and maybe a certain CD is special to them.

4. Use it as a party craft. Have no idea how to entertain a bunch of kids at a party. Hand out old CD’s and tell them to decorate them as they wish. Find cheap frames and some backing and let them make their own fun. Even go with the above and make their own coaster.

5. Bird Deterrent. Do you have birds that are always running into your glass doors or windows? Help them avoid hurting them selves by hanging a few on you doors and window so they can avoid flying head first into your house.

6. Are you a painter? Use them as pallets to mix your paint. There is already a hole in the middle for holding. You can keep clean them off easily and reuse them or keep them for mixing the same colors.

Do you have any fun uses for old CD’s? Let me know and I will post them on the Beagle!

Happy V-day Pencil Toppers

Valentine's Day Pencil Toppers

Valentine's Day Pencil Toppers

 
 

These Valentine’s Day Pencil Toppers are a quick and cute way to show someone you care about them! The pencil toppers go great with a cute card or little sweet treat. This craft is great for kids you have large classes or Valentine’s parties to go to! This way no one is left out and everyone gets to feel a little special.

 

 

 

Materials:
Scissors
Craft foam
Permanent markers
Pipe cleaner
Pencils

Instructions:

1.Cut a 1- to 2-inch heart from craft foam. With a permanent marker, print a short message on the front and the name of the giver on back.

2.Poke an inch of the pipe cleaner through the bottom of the heart, bend it down, and twist it back around the remaining length of pipe cleaner.

3.Coil the pipe cleaner tightly around the pencil. Then gently pull up on the heart so that part of the coil bobs freely above the pencil, with several loops anchored around the eraser end.

4. Add any of your own decorations you want. If you have glitter, stickers, buttons, left over material use it! Go crazy and make these pencil toppers original! You can do whatever you want to them!

Make Your Old Candles New

Make Old Candles New

Make Your Old Candles New

 

 

While un-Christmas-ing our house last weekend I realized we have a bunch of candles that we can’t use anymore but I didn’t want to throw them out because there was still plenty of wick, wax and perfectly good jars for some left over. I have many a glass container sitting in our basement waiting for some good use and it struck me, I can make new candles out of these. I always struggle with our tea lights as well that can’t burn anymore but there is still wax left over. I did some online research and making old candles new really isn’t that difficult.

1. Separate your colored, scented and plain candle wax from each other. In the articles I have read mixing colors generally turns the wax brown so trying to mix may not always be that good of an idea. The same goes for scented wax. The idea of mixing scents sounds fun but they may not mix as pleasantly as you might think.

2. If you have wax in glass containers you can remove the wax by boiling water in a pot. Once the water is boiling put the glass containers in the water and let sit until wax is melted enough to pour out of the container.

3. While you are waiting for the water to boil/wax to melt get your new containers or molds ready.  Make sure to clean the containers first and that they are dry before pouring wax in.  Also make sure the glass is at room temperature before pouring the wax in.  You don’t want them to crack.

4. If you want to add color or scents to plain candles while the wax is melted add some food coloring, or your favorite scented oils. You can also add dried fruit or herbs if you want to get fancy. Make sure to stir thoroughly.

5. Once the was is ready you can pour into the container, mold or cookie sheet. If you are pouring directly into a container make sure to put a straw in the center of the candle while the wax is still hot so you can put the wick in it. Once you have the wick where you want it slowly remove the straw from the middle. I wouldn’t pull the straw completely out so you can make sure the wick doesn’t fall into the hot wax and melt back into the candle. If you are using a cookie sheet/mold and intend to cut out shapes let the wax harden a little before cutting the shapes follow the same instructions for adding the wick as in the container except you may have to hold the straw up if the mold isn’t tall enough to keep the straw from falling over while the wax is still hot.

6. Once the wax has dried a little and is ready to cut, do so carefully with a cookie cutter or knife. Remove the mold or cookie cutter quickly so the wax doesn’t stick to it but also make sure the shape holds. If it doesn’t the wax is too soft.

7. Once the wax is set and hard you have brand new candles without spending any money! You can give them away as gifts or keep them for yourself.

8. If you want to layer colors or scents you can use a oj or milk carton as a mold.  Pour the first layer in the mold and wait for it to set, then the next and so on until you have the layers you want.  You can follow the same directions with the straw as above for adding the wick.