Showing posts with label Gifts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Gifts. Show all posts

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Outstanding Gifts for First Communions and Confirmations

April and May are the typical months for many "spiritual" exercises in the Roman Catholic Church, so let's review some appropriate and outstanding gifts for these special occasions!

gifts for religious occasions, Holy Communion, Confirmation,
Spring is that time of renewal and rebirth!  Everything seems to be coming to life again and so with Easter behind us, it's time to help our youngsters grow in their faith too!

Along with the profession of their First Communions and/or Confirmations, many families opt to host a small party for the child who is taking this big step.  Often times if you are invited to this kind of celebration, it is difficult to know what an appropriate gift would be for the child. As the parent and grandparent of a few children that have made this testament to their faith,  I can help you out!

Holy Communions and Confirmations are religious events,  unlike birthdays or other celebrations.  Gifts should be in keeping with the tone of the event.  For parents and grandparents, they may choose to give the child a Prayer Book and/or Rosary.  A nice cross on a chain for them to wear would also be appropriate.  Other invited guests may choose monetary gifts because they have no idea what an appropriate gift would be.

I like to give books and believe firmly that a child will enjoy a book given for a special occasion and maybe even treasure that book well into their adult life.  To that end, I'm going to suggest a  book that I really like and would be lovely for either First Communion or Confirmation


Brother Sun and Sister Moon is an adaptation from St. Francis of Assisi's song to God, by Katherine Paterson!  The original version was written in 1227!  This particular book has beautiful illustrations that are actually hand cut outs of paper by Pamela Dalton.  Each picture is a marvel in and of itself. This book is wonderful in both content and design.  The gorgeous pictures and beautiful words,  will be a nice reminder for any child of that special day in their lives. The illustrations are just so well done and an art form that we don't see too much of.  I had seen this book at the library, and I was taken by surprise at the beauty of the illustrations.  Mind you, I also happen to love St. Francis of Assisi!  He is the patron saint of gardeners (my other passion) and naturalists. 

The Bible Made Easy - for Kids,  is a great starting point for dialogue about faith.  When the children read what is happening in the Bible stories,  in language that they understand, discussion about faith topics is so much easier!  The Bible (while wonderful in its original form) is not a book that is easily understood.  Giving children the opportunity to read the stories and understand their meanings is a great way to start some interesting discussions about the life and faith lessons that we need to learn.

Encouraging children to read and ask questions makes their faith life come alive.  It's not just something they do on Sundays anymore. 

So let me see if I can make it even easier for you to decide on the appropriate gift!  Here's a list that works for me:

Holy Communion or Confirmation Gifts:

1.  Faith based books! (Geared to the age of the child)
2.  Cross for Child's room
3.  Bookmarks with spiritual sayings
4.  Picture frame for the "Special Day Photo"
5.  Rosary (if they are Catholics, you can never have just one!)
6.  Necklace or charm with a religious tone (angels, wings, crosses etc.)
7.  Small statue of their favorite saint or namesake.
8.  Donation to a favorite charity in the name of the child.
9.  Child friendly Bible
10.Gratitude Journal

These are just my suggestions, I'm sure that you can come up with more! Teaching and passing on the faith we believe in is part of our duty as parents.  Milestones in that faith formation should be celebrated with loved ones.  Truly, it is home where our sense of faith begins and it is home where milestones should be celebrated too.
Holy Communion gifts, religious gifts, faith based gifts from family

You can read more about these sacraments and appropriate gifts in another review I did a few years ago.  Click Right Here and read some more if you feel so inclined!  Bless you all!




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Monday, April 9, 2018

Reviewing the Winsor & Newton Cotman Water Colour Compact

Reviewing the Cotman Water Colours Compact.
Are your friends or family members artistic? Do you need a gift idea for that artist? The Winsor & Newton Cotman Water Colour Compact set is an appreciated gift.

The Winsor & Newton Cotman Water Colour Compact set comes complete with 14 “half pans” of watercolor, a small field brush, and a detachable water cup. Winsor & Newton is a respected name in the world of art supplies and paints. The half pans can be removed and replaced when a frequently used color runs out. Or exchanged for other colors that are needed for the current painting.  The case closes and is slim - easy to slip into a backpack, bag, or purse.

Over the years, I have found that it is difficult to buy gifts for the artists in my family. I would love to be artistic, but I’m just not. So I love to nurture the creativity of the artists who surround me and live vicariously through them. The only problem has been that artists usually have very strong opinions of the supplies they prefer to use. I have found it so intimidating to purchase art gifts over the years that I have usually stuck with the “safe” things. Gift cards. Or the pad of paper that they use the most frequently. Blah. Boring.

Artists are often very particular about certain brushes for certain projects. It’s so overwhelming that I tend to stick with the gift card safety net. However, I occasionally want to purchase something that, over time, he can think, “I remember when Dawn gave this to me”. That would mean that I’ve chosen something useful to him, something he likes, and of good quality.

Apparently, one year, I managed to do that. Time has gone by so I can’t recall what the occasion was. But, I gifted an artistic friend a Cotman Watercolor Compact. 

He is often outdoors; taking long scenic drives, camping, fishing, and hiking on a regular basis. When he goes out he often takes the Cotman Watercolor Compact along. If he sees something that interests him, he does a quick sketch or painting.

I asked him why he likes this item and he went on a long explanation about why certain paints (i.e Windsor Newton Cotman) are of such high quality due to the pigments and how they are made. My eyes glazed over. So he started over and summarized with the following:

“It’s high quality”

“It’s durable. I’ve sat on it and it’s fine”

“Any brand of half pan paint will fit”

“I love the portability”

“It doesn’t become stained except for the creases where you would expect some staining”

“I do prefer Cotman pigments”

“Although the Van Gogh pigments are good too”

“I really have no complaints about it” but then went on to say “the little brush was okay, not the best, but I take my own along anyway”.

Of course he does.




If you have an artist/painter on your gift list, consider the Cotman Watercolor Compact. I think your artist will love it too. I bought this gift years ago (in 2013 if I recall correctly) and have seen first hand that it is still in use and is appreciated. 


A riverside plein air painting (photo taken in 2013)




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Copper Chef Square Fry Pan Review

 Copper Chef Square Fry Pan Review
I enjoy cooking, probably because I enjoy eating, and the kitchen is my shared domain.  You see, I share my kitchen with my husband because he also cooks.  He has his specialties and I have mine. 

Not only do we share the kitchen, we share our pots and pans, one of which is the Copper Chef square fry pan that my parents gave my husband for Christmas this past year.   We both love our new skillet.  Note I said "our".   It may have been a gift to my husband, but I now claim it equally because it is so totally awesome.  As a matter of fact, I purchased the Copper Chef round fry pan for my husband for Valentine's Day.  Give it a few days, and I will claim it equally as well.


Why I Love the Copper Chef Fry Pan


First and foremost, I love the Copper Chef fry pan because it cleans so easily.  Seriously, I can easily clean the pan with a paper towel.  Of course, I still hand wash it with dish soap, but it could pass for clean before it ever hits the sink.  According to the packaging information, the pan is dishwasher safe.  However, I always hand wash my coated cookware to preserve the coating for as long as possible.


Copper Chef Square Fry Pan Review


Copper Chef Square Fry Pan Reviewed
I also really like the square shape!  As you can see in the photo, I can fry 4 pieces of meat or 4 eggs at the same time.  With a round pan, I can usually only fry one or two pieces at a time depending on the size of the pan and I could only fry one egg at a time.  It is simply amazing that the square shape makes that much difference, but it does.

Another plus, you can put this pan in the oven, which means it is not just for stove-top frying.  

Oh, and lest I forget to tell you, it has a non-stick ceramic coating, which accounts for the easy cleaning.  And, it also has a hollow handle that doesn't get hot when frying.  That means I don't need a fabric pot holder to lift the skillet.  

Currently, we have the 9.5" square pan and the 8" round pan.   Now, I want the square pan with the lid!  Guess you all know what my husband's next gift will be.  

Copper Chef Square Fry Pan Review
 




Read More Product Reviews On
ReviewThisProducts.com


"Copper Chef Square Fry Pan Review"  written by:
House of Sylvestermouse





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Review of Zazzle

Have you ever wanted to make a special gift for someone using a photograph you have taken?  If so, Zazzle is a great way to go!


Sea after Storm Throw Pillow
Sea after Storm Throw Pillow
by mbgphoto

The above pillow was made on Zazzle using a photograph I took in Florida.  There is one photo on one side of the pillow and a second photo on the opposite side of the pillow.  Whether you'd like to make a special gift for someone or whether you'd like to open a store and make a little extra money the information on the rest of this post will help you to get started.  This information was taken from a presentation I gave to my photography club.

What is Zazzle?

Zazzle is a program where you can get paid for doing what you love best, creating photographs and art!  It is free to set up, you don't have to carry any inventory and Zazzle handles all the production and customer service issues.  Zazzle has three ways to make money, as a designer, a maker or an associate.  I work as a designer and will concentrate on that aspect in this post.

Designer Program

  1. Upload your photograph or artwork onto products.  Over 250 different products are available.
  2. A customer likes your design and buys it.
  3. Zazzle processes transactions and handles all customer service.
  4. Zazzle prints and ships to customers.
  5. Zazzle sends you a payment for a percentage of sales.

Pricing System

  1. You choose any royalty rate from 5% to 99%
  2. Base price is increased by that amount so you earn your royalty.
  3. Base Price +Your Royalty Percentage=Retail Price

My Experience with Zazzle

  1. Started my first Zazzle store in 2008
  2. Currently have 3 Zazzle stores: mbgphoto, lighthouseenthusiast,and Butterflyblittz.
  3. Example of sales on photo from 2007 of Cabo San Lucas.  From that one photo $1607.28 in royalties.  Sold

    • 836 mugs
    • 333 magnets
    • 52 luggage tags
    • 23 ornaments
    • 16 keychains
    • 2 puzzles
    • 12 buttons
    • 2 postcards

  • I currently have over 6800 products in my three stores and I sell something most every day.  Sometimes it is only a postcard and sometimes it is a bigger sale.    Here are some examples of my products.
  1. Go to zazzle.com
  2. Click on sell on Zazzle in top left hand area
  3. Choose from Designer-Maker-Associate

Steps in Designer Program

  1. Create a Zazzle Account
  2. Open Free designer store and pick a store name
  3. Create design, choose product, upload image, create text if desired, resize image as desired.
  4. Post design for sale "Post for Sale"
  5. Enter key words so customers can find your product. Good key words are essential.

Enjoy!!





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Monday, January 8, 2018

Birthstone Charm Necklace for Grandmother Review

Birthstone charm necklace
This custom grandmother necklace with a charm for each grandbaby is a sweet and thoughtful gift. It symbolizes and celebrates each grandchild through their Swarovski crystal birthstone.


Handmade Birthstone Charm Necklace for Grandmother



I received a handmade birthstone grandmother necklace offered on Etsy and made by powderandjade. I have three grandchildren (well...two and one on the way). They were born in May, August, and expected in February. My necklace has three individual charms.

The charms are strung on a dainty chain. Perfect for those grandmoms who don't tend to wear large pieces of jewelry. The card inside the box read: The love between a Grandma and her Grandchildren is forever.

Powderandjade's Etsy shop offers a large variety of necklaces celebrating the love of family members and friends: 
Birthstone charm necklace by powderandjade

  • mother
  • daughter
  • sisters
  • sister-in-law
  • grandmother and grandchildren
  • significant other
  • friends
  • and many more

These necklaces are thoughtful gifts for someone you love or for yourself. I know that I am happy to wear little reminders of my grands each day. And I am appreciative of my daughter-in-law who chose it for me.



Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Friday, January 5, 2018

Nordic Ware Sweet Snowflakes Pan Reviewed

Nordic Ware Sweet Snowflakes Pan
The Nordic Ware Sweet Snowflakes Pan Makes a Beautiful Pattern on an Otherwise Plain Baked Product

I received several Nordic Ware pans this year for Christmas, which thrilled me beyond belief.  I love to cook and I like for everything I bake to make a "pretty" presentation.  However, I have several recipes for baked products that are not frosted or decorated.  As a result, they may taste fabulous, but they are not pretty on a table.  When I bake those kinds of cakes or baked products in a Nordic Ware pan, then they have a pretty design on the top or a pretty shape and I am a happy baker.

Even cornbread is pretty when baked in a Nordic Ware Sweet Snowflakes pan.





The Nordic Ware Sweet Snowflakes Shortbread Pan


 Nordic Ware Sweet Snowflakes Shortbread Pan, SilverCheck PriceOkay, we can all see that the pan says it is for shortbread.  A very easy shortbread recipe is included with the pan.  

However, regardless of the title, it is a baking pan, period.  It actually may seem a little misleading that is says "shortbread".  One might think you could only bake shortbread in this pan.  Not true!  Think single layer cake and you will have a better description of the pan in my opinion.

Nordic Ware pans are made of cast aluminum and have a non-stick coating.   They are slightly heavier than the commonly used standard thin steel cake pans, but no where near as heavy as a cast iron skillet.  Like any other baking pan, I grease my Nordic Ware pans with Crisco shortening or heavy butter before each use.  The cake or bread will easily turn right out without sticking.

This particular Snowflake pan holds 6 cups.  Due to bread or cakes rising,  you never fill the pan more than half full.

I should note, I do hand wash all of my cake pans whether they are Nordic Ware or some other brand.  I want them to last my lifetime and beyond.  Each Nordic Ware pan does have a lifetime warranty, but I have never had a reason to test that warranty. 


More Nordic Ware Bakeware

Warning, once you have tried your first Nordic Ware Pan, you will want more

My first Nordic Ware pan was the Sweetheart Rose pan featured below.  I love making muffins in that pan!   Several years ago, I started making my banana bread in that pan and I love the shaped design.   I don't think I have made a regular loaf of banana bread since. 

 

Read More Product Reviews On
ReviewThisProducts.com


"Nordic Ware Sweet Snowflakes Pan"  written by:
House of Sylvestermouse





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Friday, December 29, 2017

Wooden Puzzle Compartment Boxes by Kalotart on Etsy Reviewed

The Biggest Hit in Our Home on Christmas!

 Wooden Puzzle Compartment Boxes by Kalotart on Etsy
Each year, I try to find a unique surprise gift for our children for Christmas.  They make a wish-list for me which helps tremendously in gift selection, but I still enjoy giving that unexpected gift that will hopefully light their eyes with excitement.  The surprise gift choice I made this year may very well be the best I have ever selected.  I gave each of them a Wooden Puzzle Compartment Box made by Kalotart on Esty.

I admit, the challenge to find a worthy surprise gift gets harder every year now that our children are both grown, especially since our daughter is married.  That means instead of two, I try to find something all 3 kids will enjoy.  

How I Found the Wooden Puzzle Compartment Boxes by Kalotart on Esty


Wooden Puzzle Compartment Boxes by Kalotart on Etsy
I shop year round for Christmas.  You see, my Christmas gift to myself and to my husband is that Christmas is paid for before Dec. 25th each year.  Neither of us like debt and we wouldn't be able to enjoy Christmas at all if we felt the heavy burden of debt waiting for us on Dec. 26th.  Therefore, when I made the surprise gift selection for our children back in July, it was not unusual.  But, it was hard for me to wait until Christmas to give it to them.

One of my favorite online sites is Etsy.  I started my search for a unique gift there and found the Wooden Puzzle Boxes by Kalotart.  When I read about László 'Kossuth' Antal, maker of the boxes, my decision was made!   There is something very special about knowing he makes the boxes based on a design by his great-great-grandfather.   A family tradition of beautiful craftsmanship!

However, even I must admit, I didn't realize how fabulous my choice was until Christmas morning.


Giving the Gift of Wooden Puzzle Boxes by Kalotart

Wooden Puzzle Compartment Boxes by Kalotart on Etsy
Our daughter spent this Christmas with her inlaws, so we Skyped each other and opened our gifts together.  I had shipped her box to them in advance with instructions to not open it until we were connected on Skype.  I handed our son his package to open once we were all seated and ready to rip of the wrapping paper.  The boxes were an instant hit because of their visual outward beauty.  Anyone would appreciate the lovely colors and designs.  

I selected a white box for our daughter & son-in-law, and a green box for our son.  I laughed because they each thought their box was the prettiest.  First score for Mom!  I chose the right color for each child.  

I wrote a note on the top of each box that told them they had to discover how to open the puzzle box in order to discover the surprise inside.  They immediately started investigating their boxes.  I offered hints, but they all replied with an emphatic "no!"  I honestly had no idea that our son-in-law loved puzzles too, but he was as invested in discovering the secret way to open the box as either my daughter or my son.

They tilted, turned, inspected, shook, and pushed sections of the box until they each found a solution, but it did take a while and was exactly the level of challenge they all enjoy.    

My parents were here for the Skype / Gift Opening session.  It was truly as much fun for us to watch "the solving game" as it used to be to see their reactions years ago to their gifts from "Santa".

Oh, one more thing!  In case you are wondering who got the third box shown in the intro picture, it was a gift for my parents which they received later on Christmas day.  


How to Purchase Your Own Wooden Puzzle Compartment Boxes by Kalotart on Etsy


The boxes are offered individually or at a reduced price in purchased in lots of 2 or more.  There are several different designs and sizes that are available in a variety of colors.  

The workmanship is beyond outstanding.  These boxes are beautifully carved and tightly assembled with exceptional fittings.  You would never know just looking at the box that it is also a fabulous puzzle with secret compartments inside.






Check Out More Gift Reviews at
ReviewThisGifts.com




Wooden Puzzle Compartment Boxes by Kalotart on Etsy Review Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Monday, December 18, 2017

KeySmart Compact Key Organizer Review

Organize your keys with the KeySmart on Amazon
KeySmart is an ultra light weight but very durable organization system for keys. Are you tired of that mess of keys on your key chain. And that lump of keys in your pocket or the jumble of keys rattling around in your purse? This may be the perfect solution. Do you know someone whose job requires access to many keys at all times? This would be the perfect gift for that person. 


Vote of Confidence From a KeySmart Owner


Word-of-mouth recommendations are often the best way to gain information. In this case, the best review comes from someone who has owned and used this little gadget. 

I was recently with a friend who had purchased this item for himself over a year ago. And then liked it so much that he had purchased it as a gift for his brother last Christmas. I was surprised to see my friend still using the KeySmart after all this time has passed.

"You like that little thing?" I asked him

"Oh man, do I." 

How to use your KeySmart Extended Key Holder:

  • Purchase the KeySmart based on how many keys you want to organize. Note: I am referring to flat keys - such as typical house keys. Car keys will big fobs will attach to the end of the KeySmart with the loop.
  • Unscrew the sections of the KeySmart, and place your keys inside - with a washer on each side of each key.  
  • Screw the sections back together.

The KeySmart has become similar to a Swiss Army Knife of your keys.

When I told my friend that I was considering writing a review, he said, "Gadgetry, tinkery, mechanical folk will like it." He then immediately took photos of his KeySmart with the quote after "one and a half years of HARD use."

He carries his in his pocket and in his tool bag. He works hard and his tools do too. 

At first, I was skeptical and thought this was just a gimmick. But now I've decided I want one of my own for my sets of keys. 


Photos courtesy of WLSIII




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Google Play Gift Cards: the Preferred Gifts

Google Play gift card by mail
This review about the wildly popular Google Play gifts cards may be an odd review. After all, I've never used one and I'm not certain of everything they can purchase.  I can, however, swear to their popularity and the high demand for them with the teenagers I'm acquainted with. 

As a mom and a grandmom, I am very aware that over the years I give two types of gifts: first, the kind of gift I want the recipient to have (such as socks, coats, and gloves) and second, the kind of gift the recipient wants to receive. Google Play gift cards are gifts that are most definitely in that second category. I know this to be true from the students at work. And who better to recommend gifts for youngsters than the youngsters themselves?

Google Play Gift Cards


I watched a young man who was thrilled to have received a Google Play gift card. He said due to their popularity, they were always "sold out" when it was his turn in the school store. But not on this day. On this day he was able to obtain on. It was easy to see how ecstatic he was. It was like Christmas had arrived an entire month early.  Which made me decide to check into more about the gift cards.

These gift cards can purchase anything in the Google Store. This includes:

  • games
  • apps
  • movies & tv
  • music
  • books

Google Play Gift Card Tips


The Google Play gift cards cannot purchase actual items such as electronics and accessories. Think of the Google Play gift cards as money to be spent only in the Google Play Store. An adult friend told me that these cards can also be used to purchase extra levels or currency in certain games.

The students who like these cards are using them on their Android phones and on their tablets. 

Also, Google Play cards bought in the US are to be used in the US only (apologies to our international readers). The card I have shown is an actual gift card that will be mailed to a home address. Perfect for giving a tangible gift at Christmas. 

If you prefer instant gratification, there are Google Play "cards" available via a code that is purchased then emailed to you or the recipient and redeemed using that code. 

Google Play cards come in a variety of amounts. Check out Amazon for a variety of these cards.

Holiday Gift Guide 

Related Links:


Be sure to browse the Review This! holiday gift guide for a wide variety of gift ideas and recommendations from our writers. 

How many times have you been on the road during the holidays and have needed to recharge those electronics? Avoid that problem and make the long drives far more pleasant for the children and/or yourself with the DC to AC Power Inverter/Adapter for Cars recommended by Sylvestermouse Cynthia.

Photo attribution: CCO Creative Commons


Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

A Novel Gift for a Sudoku Fan

Novelty gift idea for sudoku fan
If you know someone who loves Sudoku (and don't we all have at least one person on that list?) then you're probably sick of buying them Sudoku books and no doubt they already have (or don't like) the electronic version of Sudoku.

Let's review other ideas for s Sudoku fan and there are a couple.  A gift that I thought looked really neat was one of the Sudoku mugs (mind you I always think a mug is a cool gift idea) that's available, but from experience these really don't seem to be appreciated as much as an actual puzzle book.

What is left?  Well there are some  Sudoku calendars which look really good.  I have debated getting these, but so many people just use their phones instead of a physical calendar  these days.

This leads me to another idea - something very unexpected and a very novel gag type of gift.

Introducing the Sudoku Toilet Paper!


Reviewing a Puzzling Gift Idea



Now I have to be honest I can't claim credit for this gift idea, it comes with a little story.  My boss passed away a couple of months ago and we had to clean out his office and we came across some Sudoku toilet paper.

One of his friends called in as we were still sorting through things and noticed the toilet paper and told us that he'd given it to him as he loved to do Sudoku.  I immediately asked where I could get some as I thought it would be a great idea for my mother.

The paper seemed good quality and I personally think it makes a great gag gift, but also if you're going to be in the 'little room' for a while why not exercise your 'little grey cells' at the same time!

I give it a big thumbs up as a novel gift idea for a Sudoku fan and if you're a fan and on my Christmas list - surprise!  You're getting toilet paper.

The only question now is - can I find a toilet paper holder that has a pen/pencil holder attached because you just know that you'll forget your pen when you want to solve the puzzle and I don't think it's fair to try and do Sudoku in your head!

Novelty, gag gift idea for Sudoku and puzzle fans
Please Pin Me!


What do you think a great gift idea or not?

If you prefer Suduko books or you want to give one as well then Cynthia reviews one of her favorite (like her I prefer the pen and paper form of Suduko to the electronic ones and this book sounds awesome!)

Brain Games 10 Minute Sudoku Puzzles Book ReviewBrain Games 10 Minute Sudoku Puzzles Book Review
The 10 Minute Sudoku Puzzles Book satisfies my love of Sudoku really well, it's also a ring bound book which I appreciate as it is easier for me to use when traveling or waiting for appointments.

If you're thinking wow that's a great idea, but I don't know anyone who likes Sudoku then you might be pleased to know that you can get all kinds of novelty toilet paper (who knew?) and what better gag gift for a work colleague or your best friend?

More Gift Ideas


You can find lots of different gift ideas here at Review This from gifts for tea lovers, vegan teens, cat lovers, writers and more.  Be sure to check out our Holiday Gift Guide (by clicking the picture below) or just search gifts for lots of great ideas.

Holiday Gift Guide





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Bead & Sequin Christmas Ornament Kits Review

Bead & Sequin Ornament Kits Review

Make Your Own Treasured Keepsake with Beaded Christmas Ornament Kits

Handmade beaded Christmas ornaments are a fabulous gift to give to just about anyone.  My own Christmas tree is loaded with Christmas tree ornaments that have been given to me over the years.  I have a whole collection of ornaments from my grandmother.  Since she is no longer with me, I cherish them more now than I did the day I received them.

I have keepsake ornaments that my parents gave to me and beautiful handmade beaded ornaments that my mother made for me when I was still a child.  I also have handmade ornaments from my children.  Now that they are grown, it is a walk in the past to touch the ornaments those precious little hands made.

Giving Christmas ornaments as Christmas gifts has become a family tradition in our home.  Why not make your own beaded Christmas ornaments and start a new family tradition today?


Beaded Ornament Handmade by My Mother


This is one of the ornaments that my mother made for me when I was a little girl. It is approximately 45 years old. It is one of my greatest treasures.

In my minds eye, I can still see my mom sitting at the kitchen table, placing each bead, each sequin in just the right place to make this lovely keepsake.  Year after year, this ornament finds it's special place on our tree.

Beaded Christmas Ornament Kits

 

An Ornament I Made for Our Son

I made this spider ornament for my son 22 years ago.  Each year, regardless of when I decorate our Christmas tree, I hold the little spider aside for my son to add to the tree.  To this day, our tree is not completely finished until he comes home and hangs the spider on the tree. 


Beaded Christmas Ornament Kits


I made the spider long before the internet and computers became a household "utility".  I have never gone back to write my own instructions online.

 

This Was A Gift I Made for Our Daughter

I chose to make this ornament for my daughter because her favorite color is purple.  However, there is another meaning behind the color choice.  Purple is a combination of red and blue, the warmest and coolest colors, therefore purple is considered to be the ideal color.  Thus, an ideal beaded ornament for an ideal daughter!


 Beaded Christmas Ornament Kits

 

I Made This Ornament for Each of Our Children

In addition to the ornaments I made with the individual child in mind, I have also made matching ornaments over the years for both of our children. The green carousel ornament is one that I made for both children. 

Beaded Christmas Ornament Kits

Ornament Kits or Instruction Books

I personally prefer the ornament kits because they come prepackaged with everything needed to complete a beaded ornament, except the craft glue.   However, sometimes a kit is not available in a specific color or design.  Then I pull out my trusty books and buy the supplies required separately. 

Either way, the gift of a handmade ornament is special to the recipient and will be a cherished treasure, just as the ones I have shared above, for decades to come.


Beaded Ornament Kits

Because of my on love for making beaded ornaments, I have several beaded ornament kits available in my own Ebay store.  My inventory changes often simply because they sell out and additional kits are not always available from the suppliers.

Here are a few that I currently have in stock:


RSS feeds don't always load properly. If the feed is not showing above, you can see the ornament kits available in my Ebay store by clicking here!




See More Craft Reviews at
ReviewThisCrafts.com

Where you will find some awesome Craft Reviews & Tutorials like these, and more!






Bead & Sequin Christmas Ornament Kits Reviewed by:
House of Sylvestermouse





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Science Academy Lip Balm Lab Reviewed

Promote the Sciences to Girls

female scientist
Female Scientist courtesy of Pixabay.com
When I can, I love to give my grandchildren educational toys. Recently I purchased a Science Academy Lip Balm Lab as a Christmas gift for my youngest granddaughter. I thought it was worth a review as a gift idea for the readers of Review This. 

I was thrilled when I discovered the Science Academy lab kits for children! Obviously, both boys and girls can have fun with  observing first hand the chemical reactions to different materials. Either gender can be a potential scientist in the making. Since I have little girls to buy for, I love the idea of promoting any of the sciences to them. When I was a little girl, my gender did not get much in encouragement when it came to fields of science. Society has changed and I think we are doing a better job of promoting a career in science to girls but we can do better, in my humble opinion. 

There are 5 choices when it comes to the options for a gift for the child on your list. I chose the lip balm for a couple of reasons. First of all, my little six year old is obsessed with lip gloss and lip balm. Secondly, she has very sensitive skin so I was leery of the soap and bath bomb choices. The lip balm lab seemed a good option for her to have fun with while learning about chemicals and how to produce a product that she can actually use.

I love that she is going to learn about formulas while working with the kit. She will decide on colors and shimmers and can even add SPF to help protect her little lips from the sun. While experimenting with her own lip protection with her mom's assistance, she will be exposed to the possibilities that a career in science might offer to her. I am a firm believer in presenting the concepts of different professions to children as they play. We never know what might plant a seed in their young minds that later grows into a passion in their adult lives. To me, that is always a good thing!

Will my sweet little grandchild grow up to be a chemist or work in the science field? I don't know nor does she at her young little age. What this educational toy will do is give her some practical experience so that later on she will have more information to base her decision on what she wants to make a living with. Whatever she decides we will applaud her decision.

How about you? Are you planning on giving a child on your list an educational toy this year for the holidays?



Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Monday, November 27, 2017

How to Make Easy Christmas Tree Ornaments

Today I am reviewing an easy way to make beautiful Christmas tree ornaments using tri-beads. This is a great project to make with children. 

The best ornaments I've ever placed on my Christmas tree over the years were these ornaments made by my children made in school and given to me as gifts. The ornaments were special because they were made by my children. They were beautiful then because they were made by children's hands. They are beautiful still today because of the sparkling colors.

Yes, I wrote that they are beautiful still today. These ornaments are durable. I still have those ornaments from years ago. I loved these ornaments so much that I have replicated the project with the students at work. Over the years, I've sent many children home with these ornaments as gifts for their caregivers.

Now I'm sharing the step-by-step instructions how to make these incredibly simple ornaments with the children in your life. Or perhaps you want to make your own ornaments. I have to admit that sometimes I make these ornaments when I'm alone and have used them for decorations when wrapping gifts. There are many ways to enjoy these easy-to-make decorations. 

Finally, remember that the best gift you can give this season is the gift of your time and attention. Especially when you are spending time with a children. 

Materials:
plastic tri-beads 
pipe cleaners (either tinsel or chenille)
1/8" wide ribbons (optional)

Tools:
heavy-duty scissors
pliers 




Instructions:
Gather your beads and pipe cleaners. Ribbon is options (but preferred by the children).

Gather your tools. Heavy-duty scissors or wire cutters are needed to cut the pipe cleaners. And pliers to bend the wire tips are optional but highly recommended.

Be aware: Take care when cutting pipe cleaners. This project is extremely easy, with the exception of trimming the pipe cleaners. The wire is sometimes difficult to cut and the tips of the pipe cleaners are "pokey". Younger children may need to be supervised closely to ensure they don't poke or scratch themselves.


Candy Cane Ornament Instructions:


1. To make the candy cane bead ornament, knot the end of the pipe cleaner and pull the knot tight.

2. Carefully cut the end off; just below the knot. If a sharp end remains, bend it with the pliers or your fingers toward the knot, tucking it into the bulk of the knot (in order to be safe for little fingers)

3. Allow the child to slide beads onto the pipe cleaner; snugging the beads up against the knot. The tri-beads fit together beautifully and create a "round" shape. Some children like the traditional red and white candy cane stripes. Some children prefer psychedelic colors. Have fun with it.



4. Fill the pipe cleaner to the desired length; making sure to leave enough material to make a knot.( make the knot shape loosely then work to snug the knot up toward the last bead in order to hold the design together snugly).


5. Note the knot is snugged up to the last bead. Check the end for any sharp points and bend it up, out of the way, if needed (a point is visible in the photos. It is probably not unsafe to leave it, but I prefer to  bend it out of the way - just to be safe.

Finish the candy cane with a bow if desired. The ornament can be hung in the tree by the hook of the cane. Or traditional ornament hooks can be purchased and added. Occasionally, the children choose to use the ribbon for a loop at the top of the candy cane for hanging. 



Wreath Ornament Instructions:


1. Making a wreath is similar to making the candy cane except, Do Not knot either end. Thread the beads onto the pipe cleaner and gather them in the middle of the pipe cleaner.

2. Leave approximately 2" or more of empty pipe cleaner at each end. Bend the ornament into a round shape and begin to tie a know at the top (as though you are tying the first portion of a shoelace knot).

3. Pull the ends together, twisting lightly to form a single pipe cleaner from the two ends.

4. Bend the end down to form a loop; wrapping the very end around the portion of the pipe cleaner that is holding the bead. If there is a point piece remaining (as shown) use the pliers, or your fingers, to carefully wrap it more tightly around in order to hide the end.

5. Add ribbons as desired.




And with that, you have the finished products. Happy Holidays to you and yours. And remember to give the gift of your time and attention.

Note: This article was previously published elsewhere. The instructions and photographs are by the author.


Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.