5 Fandom Friday


Skipped last week, but back on board with The Nerdy Girlie and SuperSpaceChick’s fun link up! This week’s topic:

Smart Phone Apps I Can’t Live Without!

This is actually a bit tricky for me as A: I haven’t had a smartphone for all THAT long, and B: I don’t do a ton on my phone. Therefore, most of my most used/fave apps are pretty run-of-the-mill boring. Hopefully I’ll find new ones from other people’s posts!

1. Instagram. Not too shocking. It’s about 50% of the reason I GOT a smartphone (you can judge, it’s okay 😉 ). I love scrolling through pics, and I love sharing pics. Also, my little loves to scroll through the #catsofinstagram tag. Not even four, and already a cat lady.

2. Afterlight. One of the few apps I’ve paid for (I’m cheap about apps!). I love to take and share photos, even though my phone camera isn’t the best. Since I’m used to using the latest version of Adobe Lightroom to edit my regular pics, Instagram’s editing options just weren’t cutting it for me. I tried this app after reading about it on a post from My Life As A Teacup and it’s great. Definitely recommend if you want a phone photo editor.

3. Pinterest. I use Pinterest on my phone more than on my computer. It’s such a great time waster, but also can be really helpful!

4. Meow Meow Star Acres. I’m still hopelessly addicted to this game. Yup.

5. IMDB. Is that a weird one?? Well, I use it a lot! My friends and I like to discuss movies at length, especially after watching something we’ve never seen before, and I am always whipping up IMDB to look up one thing or another. Most recent use? Finding out who voices Shining Armor on MLP – he sounded so familiar yet I couldn’t put a face to him. Turns out he was on an ep of Supernatural, which is probably why I know his voice.

Cloud Dough

Yet another kid’s craft that you can find all over Pinterest is Cloud Dough. We’ve been making and playing with cloud dough for almost a year, and my daughter still loves to play with it when I bring it out! What is it? Picture the consistency of wet beach sand, without being wet. You can form it into balls, build ‘sandcastles’ with it, but it’s a dry powder type substance. I love it because it’s such a fun, simple, and cheap activity – you only need flour and baby oil. We got our recipe here via Juggling With Kids. I highly recommend it!




It sweeps up in about 30 seconds, and I love that after you wash up, your hands are super soft from the baby oil! Definitely a great kids craft. Enjoy!signature image

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From Book to Storage {DIY}

I’ve seen hollow books tutorials all over blogs and Pinterest and I love them. It’s about 50% of the reason I buy antique books at yard sales is so that one day I might make an army of hollow books. Yet I’ve made none since I really didn’t have a use for a hollow book! Until now.

While browsing Pinterest I came across this

via Anamu

How brilliant is that! So naturally, I immediately went to make one. She has a tutorial on her blog, which honestly I never even clicked on until I was finished. I just LOVED the idea of concealing our router in a book which for some reason I had never thought of, and knew I could do it on my own. Overall, I think her tutorial is far easier and less time consuming then what I did, but I like my finished look better. So you take your pick! Here’s what I did (and I’m sorry these pics are HORRIBLE, I realized after I’d started that hello genius, this would make a good blog post!!! and did not set anything up all pretty at all):


First I gathered supplies (and then realized I never took a picture of said supplies until I was done so pardon the giant stack of cut out pages and lack of nice set up!). I used:

  • An antique book that fit my router
  • Scissors
  • Craft knife
  • Gluestick (which I ended up not using, but you can if you wish – see below)
  • Binder clips


First I measured guessed on how much page to leave on the ends. Once I checked that my router would fit, I cut out the middle sections of the pages. Then I used clips to hold the page ends together as I kept cutting more and more pages out of the center.


The clips kept my end page stacks out of the way as I continued cutting down. If you want, you could glue all these end stacks together so they won’t move. . .I did not do that. Our router rarely moves so I’m not worried about the end pages getting jostled. Had this been something that was going to be open and closed often, I definitely recommend gluing the end stacks together. Repeat the cutting/clipping process until all pages are cut out.


Here what it looks like when it’s finished! A nice slot for my router to slide into. Obviously this is not a true hollow book but you have to have the end open so the router cords can fit. . .I do plan on making some real hollow books to store ‘desk things’ in (aka the miscellaneous odds and ends that always finds their way to the computer desk). I think it will so much better than a small tray of clutter don’t you?


Here’s the router on the desk prior to it’s book storage system. Not massively in the way, but not cute either.

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And after, all tucked in! I love it! The book page ends are the big difference between how I did mine and how the original post was done. In the original you basically just gut the book so the router sits inside the book frame which looks nice from the front, but I didn’t like the open ends. I like that this looks like a book from all sides (well obviously not the back but no one can see that!). So there you have it, my little hidden router. Hope you like!

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My latest crafting project is one for my daughter. I saw this on Pinterest one day, and thought it was a great idea!


(Here’s the link to original blog post on ‘All For the Boys’. http://www.allfortheboys.com/home/2013/2/18/surviving-sick-days-diy-dry-erase-book.html)

Here’s mine for my little girl!



At family gatherings I asked everybody for a photo of them to use in a special project for Ellie. They happily obliged, and I went work. I booted up Photoshop and first made all my photos black and white. Then I reduced the opacity on them to about 60%, so the black marker would really pop. Just print them out and slip them in a clear plastic sleeve. I used super low print quality to save on ink (hence the white lines across the photos) and printed on plain printer paper too. I’m thinking next time I update the photos I’ll add everyone’s name to the pages too (Mommy, Daddy, Mimi, etc.) She knows who they are, but she’s really starting to learn her letters, and that would be a great visual aid!

Eraser cloth and marker storage.

When it came time to cover the binder, I debated sewing an actual sleeve for it. . .for about 45 seconds. I really went the lazy route with this craft and decided gluing would be much less effort. So, armed with my hot glue gun, I got to work. The material is a vintage sheet I got at a yard sale for $1.00. (I have a habit of snagging vintage sheets at yard sales since I love the patterns. . .my closet is rapidly filling up). I hastily cut out a (very uneven) rectangle to cover the binder and glued it down. Then, I cut out a nice even piece to fit over the inside so it looks (halfway) pretty! Note I did not hem any edges at all – I stuck with purely hot glue for this project, and I didn’t cut the squares big enough to fake a hem using folds with glue, whoops. The pen and eraser cloth pockets were made by the same method – cut out a piece of fabric and hot glue all the edges down! Works quite efficiently!


For the cover, I ‘hemmed’ the title piece with hot glue – folding over the edges and hot gluing them down so you have a (roughly) even rectangle to write on. I found a font I liked (it’s called Pea Ellie Bellie – check out my Pinterest board here for a link to download it!) and free-handed the lettering onto the fabric with a pencil – believe it or not you can actually erase pencil from fabric. Then I traced over it with a Sharpie, and glued it to the cover! Done!

I made it for my daughter to play with, I swear. . .but my hubby always said he wanted to be a pirate!

Total cost of this project for me was $3.00 – I had to purchase the clear sleeves for the paper. My mum had a three ring binder for me to use, and I had everything else. I suppose the cost of printer ink is in there too somewhere. But it’s easy and cheap, and I like that as she get’s older we can update the photos, or even add new things in there for her to draw on! It’ll be great for car rides in another year or so – I guess whenever I trust her with a dry erase marker unsupervised!

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If you make one for your kiddo feel free to send me a pic or link to it – I’d love to see it! What other crafty things have you made for your kids?

Tea Time

Here it is. . .my newest crafty DIY project.

Voila! The Custom Tea Mug!

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This came from a double Pinterest inspiration. The first was a mug that had the first lines from famous works of literature printed on it. I though to myself hmmm, I would love this but with the first lines of my personal favorite books. So began my quest to make this cup. It started with a $1.49 plain white mug from Marshalls. I traced the outside of the cup onto paper to make some templates. Using a black crayon (taken straight from my 2 1/2 year old’s crayon cup) I marked the template blocks onto the cup. Then came the tedious task of doing all the tiny lettering with a crayon! I didn’t worry about font, or even real legibility for this step; this was solely for blocking on the letters to make sure they fit in their allotted spaces. The final lettering is where the second Pinterest inspiration comes in.


There are many pins floating around that claim you can write a plain ole Sharpie marker on porcelain, bake it in the oven, and have it magically fused forever. Codswallop! Hogwash! This is entirely untrue – the Sharpie can be wiped right off with a sponge. What you need is an oil-based paint Sharpie – designed specifically for writing on porcelain, glass, metal, etc (and sold at any craft store). I’m not even sure you have to bake it once it dries, though I did. Back to the lettering. I erased the crayon with a Q-Tip as I went along filling in the final text. You don’t even need water; it just rubs off! I used a few different fonts so the sections of text are a bit more visually separate. And presto – your own one-of-a-kind mug!


So there’s my new mug in all it’s glory. The lettering isn’t perfect, and the lines are crooked in some places. But that’s what makes is my own. I love it’s little imperfections! Massive awesome points from me to anyone who knows any of the books these are from – you’ve got good taste. Do you have a tea/coffee related craft of your own? Submit it over at Little Green Guy – she’s doing a feature on them! You’ll find my mug in there along with other cool tea and coffee related crafts.


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