new templates for gift cards and boxes

One of my goals for this year is to produce at least one template offering per month. We're almost into February but I've managed to squeak in two templates for January. The motifs are the same but the function of each is different. I'm offering a heart, flower, bird and circle gift cards and gift boxes. You can find them in my new templates section of my site. I hope you like them! Now I must continue working on my next wall art update. It never ends but I love it!

By the way, I've enjoyed reading all your comments to my previous post. It's very interesting to me to see what you all do to find your center and balance. Keep them coming!

EDIT: I was so intent on posting this today that I literally wrote the above really quickly and ran out the door to pick up the kids from school. What I feel is missing is just a little bit of background on how I came up with these projects. First off, Valentine's is obviously around the corner and I wanted to come up with something for the holiday but I also wanted the project to be a little versatile too (that's why I came up with other graphic shapes); secondly, little C's birthday will be coming up in April so I've been thinking of what I could use for her birthday (an opportunity to be more girly?) and lastly this design has been in my head for quite some time so I decided it was high time to get it out into the world. So there you have it.

a question if you may

With much work to do, I still chose to run out of the house to the nearest bookstore, get my creative juices going and some alone time before picking up the kids from school. I'm still not feeling 100% but I had so many things going through my head that I needed a moment to get away from it all. Inspiring books and magazines are heaven to go through and my quickest remedy. What are your quick fixes to get centered or de-stress? I'm curious.

Tiny preview of my next template idea.

Thank you Molly for posting my egg-carton project at BabyCenter! :)

more hearts

These are just some photos I took to create my new header (finally!) Don't get too tired of my hearts yet because there is one more little project coming up this week. Then I'll let them go.

I think that a cute project would be to use this heart duplicated several times on several strings to create a mobile. All I did was cut several hearts and glued them back to back all the way around. Before gluing the last two hearts I placed some yarn in the center. I used 7 hearts but you can use more or less according to preference and patience.

recycle project no. 11 - egg carton turned into a heart

I'll be the first to admit that even before Valentine's day is here I start getting sick of seeing hearts everywhere. I've decided not to be such a heart hater this year, as you can also see by my header, (plus little C loves them) so here is our latest effort in putting together a recycling project. It may not be the fanciest but at least we got together and made something for fun and I finally got the idea of using an egg carton in some sort of wall art piece.

- One egg carton - not the styrofoam kind (cut and use only the bottoms of the egg carton)
- Red paint
- Background card stock

I cut the bottom 3/4" of each egg holder, we painted them and glued them on card stock. When everything was dry we also painted the spaces between the cut egg holders. That's it!

I'm sorry I don't have any photos of the process. It was too dark here to take anything decent.

Tips & Variations
- Make sure that when you cut the egg holders that all your edges are on the same level. If they're not it will be difficult to glue them to the card stock.
- We only used one egg carton because our frame wasn't large enough for something more elaborate but I would be willing to bet that this will look better if at least two egg cartons are used. As it is, I think the frame we used is still too snug. I like to have a nice wide border around a piece like this.
- If you don't have a handy frame available attach a ribbon to the heart and hang it on its own.



Does it make the heart grow fonder? I hope so. Sorry for the disappearing act. When I said that the new year was going to be exciting someone must have heard me because I've had nothing but great things happening. Trust me, I'll spill all the beans in due course. Last week was a careful-what-you-wish-for week - but in a good way.

I will try to make up some of the time away by posting a new kid-friendly recycling project (from the photo can you guess the material we used?) and my second template offering too. Just keep your fingers crossed that tomorrow is a good day to take photos. The weather out here has not been cooperating with me in that sense. This of course has been happening just as I needed to take at least 40 pictures in the last few days. Sigh.

I have finally succumbed to the cold that has been going around here (kids had their turn last week - husband is still immune) so I'm going to make this short and head off to some tea and bed. I hope you all had a great weekend and I'll see you tomorrow.

Oh and does anyone have any ideas for a new header? I'm tired of thinking but I'm also tired of looking at those trees!

can't stay away from paper for long

We've slowly gotten into the groove this week after having the holiday on Monday. Today I had D write out the thank you cards to send out for the gifts he received over the weekend for his birthday. I decided to help him a little with some pre-printed text. Writing out the cards wasn't his favorite thing to do, although he does understand the importance of gratitude (a little chat on that didn't hurt either) and he had to redo a few (spelling mistakes) but I'm proud of him for finishing all of them. I think we're breaking a record here by sending them out this quickly. Whew!

I have several projects in the works and here is a little idea I played around with this afternoon. The colorful hearts are courtesy of my little C. More to come with this. Stay tuned.

The kids both have colds so the last few days have been kind of slow. The cold weather doesn't help much either. I shouldn't complain though. It definitely isn't as cold here as in other cities. We're (me!) just a little on the wimpy side when it comes to lower temperatures.

getting things done

The last couple of days have been the types of days you have when you're completely focused and on a mission. I just sent my final work related email for the week and I feel so good!

My husband called me up at noon-ish and we took a lunch break together at an Italian restaurant that's really close by. It was a nice break from all the running around this week and it allowed me to get out from under the mess here. The photos are a tad blurry because I'm still getting used to using my iphone.

Part of the view from our table. My husband said these trees remind him of my balsa trees.

About the mess - I have paper, scissors, xactos, rulers, cutting mats all over the place. I soooo want to show you what I'm working on but I can't. Later. Soon. Hopefully. For the time being, my plan is to post a little project that has been swimming around in my head next week.

It's a gray, rainy and very cold day today. Perfect weather for our Friday (rented) movie night.

Tomorrow we will be celebrating D's birthday with his friends, some bowling, cake and ice cream. It's going to be fun! He asked for a pirate theme this year so the ship is a small (quick!) illustration I made for his invitations. He would've wanted some skull + bones but that's not really me. So he's stuck with this mom-approved version. ;)

I owe several of you email replies. My apologies for not getting to you sooner. I promise that I'll be sitting down and catching up with all that soon!

Have a great weekend everyone!

we did it!

And we have the shiny medals to prove it! There is absolutely NO way I could've finished without the help of my husband. He was my constant supporter. He pushed me mentally and even physically to keep going. We ended up taking the kids with us because they wanted to see us in the race. They hung out with my parents and we got to see them all when we were about 50 yds. from the finish line. It was so great to see them there cheering for us. A few seconds later my husband and I crossed the finish line hand in hand. There was no record breaking time but the feeling of finishing together was the best. Now we're a little sore but very proud of what we've done.

By the way, you can now take a peek at the first interview that I've posted on Crafty Synergy this year. Enjoy and have a great week!


It was a very busy week and it will be an exciting weekend. I haven't been around by choice but it has been difficult. I miss visiting the blogsphere. I have very exciting projects coming up and I can't wait to share them. For now here are a few photos of the last few days.

My "little" D turned 8 yesterday. I remember the day he was born so perfectly. From the first contractions to the cold hospital room that had me and our new baby snuggling up and sleeping together for the first time. Pure bliss. Feliz Cumpleaños mi nené!

The only semi-crafty thing I can show for now. Done just for fun. It's polymer clay that I stamped with a block that I carved a while back.

I love tulips. I used them for some photos I took this week.

Today I went with the kids to pick up our race bibs. My husband and I have been training for the Houston half-marathon for the past 6 months. We both have one half-marathon under our belts, but this will be the first time we get the chance to run together. Fun! (photo taken by D).

We will hopefully be crossing the finish line on Sunday in a timely, if not record-breaking, time. It was fun showing the kids where mom & dad will be while they drag their sleepy selves out of bed and hang out with my parents.

Watching the workers at the finish line this afternoon, really made my stomach turn for a minute there. Reality has set in. Wish us luck on Sunday morning!

Enjoy the weekend!

second crafty on-screen appearance

Hearing and seeing myself in video are so odd to me. It's like I'm watching someone totally different - and what about my voice? Who is that? Me? Weird. I can never get used to that.

The first time I saw myself working on a tutorial was when I did an HGTV That's Clever episode a couple of years back. If you'd like to catch a glimpse of my second on-screen tutorial here it is in all it's glory (no laughing please! specially at the part where I start off by saying that I'm going to teach you how to make junk mail instead of junk mail ART!). Natalie filmed this when we met at the Austin Maker Faire in October. What a fun weekend that was. Thank you for posting this Natalie!

Have a great weekend everyone!

thinking back, thinking forward

I'm ready for the new year and I started it with something that I wanted to do way before New Year's Day - Organize the house! I've been going at it all day long and it feels so good. I have trash to go out the door, books to be donated to the library, and I still have some more to go. It is so liberating to get rid of so many things that we really don't need. I'm on a mission to uphold my "less is more" mantra. I mean, really, how many things do we actually need to live comfortably (and w/some style of course)? Not many.

I've been going through the list of things I want to accomplish this year. Not resolutions. More like goals and ideas. I've also thought about the difference a year makes. I looked through my Flickr photos and it was interesting to see the progress I made throughout the year. I think I've found a 'voice' in my work. It flows better.

Speaking of goals, Holly at Decor8 posted about New Year's goals and had the great idea of inviting her readers to add their lists of what they want to accomplish this year. I think my list could be a mile long but the things that I came up with at the moment I posted where:
- be more creative with my cooking
- keep up with the exercising (wish me luck with my half-marathon in a couple of weeks!)
- show no fear with my attempts at sewing and incorporate it in my work somehow
- continue my recycling project ideas
- and in general - just do and hesitate less (I really like this last one)

It's going to be an exciting year. I can feel it! The down time of the last couple of weeks has really given me the mental space I needed to think about what I want to do with A Little Hut. Like I mentioned above, I still plan on continuing my recycling projects, I want to offer more templates, I want to make more wall art and cards (yes, those will stay after all but they won't be the core of what I do), and I also want to really tackle sewing this year.

After a wonderful warm shower (I'm not much of a bath person), while the bathroom was lit w/only candles (nice!), I feel ready to tackle what's left of my organizing mission tomorrow. I've also had a flash of an idea come up for my second template that I'll be offering in my shop. I'll post it sometime next week. As far as the shop is concerned I don't see a major update in wall art coming any time before mid-January. The kids don't go back to school until next week so not much is getting done in that department. Gotta go with the flow!