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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Toddler Advent: Christmas Matching Game

You could use this for your older kiddos too.  Like your elementary school-aged kids.  Little Monkey loves to play matching games.  Particularly on my tablet.  I figured we'd try a real-life version with the hope that maybe it would hold his attention a little longer (simply because you have to do all the turning yourself, which takes a few more seconds...).  I made one version that has Christmas themed pictured and one that is a whole bunch of Christmas trees.  You know, to make it even harder.

Little Monkey hasn't actually played the matching game yet, but he's had fun throwing all the pieces around... fun for Mom.  He does like to look at all the different pictures though.

You can print these files from  Simply download, save and print.  Then, just cut the squares apart.  You'll have to print TWO copies of each page, though, or you won't have matches.  The images show up funny on 4shared, but they should all be there.  I know it looks like it's missing some pictures, but it all showed up when I tested it out.  If you have problems, let me know.  By the way, there are three religious photos on the Christmas Match set.  If you don't want to play with those, just take them out.

Christmas Advent Countdown with Printable Toddler Activities

First, I'm sorry I've been so awful at posting this week.  It's been crazy.  Not only have I been trying to get everything back in order from our trip (who doesn't love vacation laundry, right?), but all three of us got sick while we were gone.  Like can't-eat-for-24-hours-or-you'll-throw-it-back-up kind of sick.  Ugh.  Little Monkey had it Thanksgiving day.  I got it on my uncle's wedding day and had to miss all the hoopla (which was the actual reason we went over for Thanksgiving).  And My Mr Right spent the last three hours of the car ride home and all night with a plastic baggie or a trash can gripped in his hands.  So, I hope you had a fabulous Thanksgiving.  As for us, well, there's always next year...  Anyway, let's move on to the good stuff.

My Little Monkey doesn't completely comprehend Christmas or Winter at this point.  He just thinks mommy is the meanest meanie that makes him stay inside all the time.  And as far as the real reason for Christmas, well... the boy barely understands who Santa is, so the deeper doctrine of Christmas is kind of lost on him.

In order to try and stave off some of the boredom this month, I have concocted an activity advent calendar.  I threw most of this together in about two days, but there are parts of it that aren't quite finished.  Basically, the idea is that Little Monkey will get to open an envelop every day before Christmas.  Inside the envelop is an activity we can do that day.  There are a lot of simple things (like make a snowman out of marshmallows, glue cotton balls on Santa's chin, color and make a lace up stocking) along with a little more involved activities (helping to set the Christmas tree up, for example).

My Little Monkey is of the opinion that if he isn't moving 500 mph, he's not moving fast enough, so there are a lot of busy activities too.  Like Snowman Bowling and a Snowball Toss.  Because there is soo much involved with this, I will be breaking this down into several mini-posts, so you'll see this snowman again...
You can get the whole list of activities HERE.  It's a Word document.  If you have trouble, let me know.  I'll email it to you.  All you have to do is print, cut them apart and then, if you get the itch to be an overachiever, glue them to card stock and put each one in an envelop.

Our first activity we will do tomorrow will be to set up and decorate the Christmas tree.  I'm a little apprehensive to let Little Monkey help.  I'm not sure he'll like that he can touch while we decorate, but then after that it's a hands-off deal...  Guess we'll see.  Come back for that adventure...

I'll do another post (hopefully tonight) with some more explanation of the other printable files I'm using with this activity advent countdown.  There's a bunch of them up on 4shared already, so feel free to browse and try to figure some of it out.  They are all my original creations, so feel free to use them.  Please don't redistribute them though.  If you want to send people here to get their own copies, great.  Please don't post them on your own site though.  Here's the links.

Check out this year's (2012) advent calendar HERE.  More printable activities!

And if you're looking for gift ideas (I know I'm madly combing the internet...), check out the WHWN Gift Guide.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A Winner, A Winner!

I have one hour and nine minutes to announce this winner before I'm a total liar.  So, let's get this done, shall we?  The winner of the 8x10" Personalized Subway Art Giveaway is...

Congratulations!  I'm sending an email your way right now.  You have 24 hours to respond and claim your prize!

If you didn't win, you can still order these (or anything in my Etsy Shop) in time for Christmas!  Don't forget to use coupon code WHWN1500 at check out.  Code is valid until December 23, 2011.  In order to receive items by Christmas, payment must be received by December 18th, 2011.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Weekend Wander #57

Welcome, welcome!  Sorry to get this up late and then not include any features, but we're doing the family thing. There will be double features next week.  I hope you have all had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  If you braved the cold and crazies this morning, I hope you got all the great deals you went looking for.

Don't forget to enter the giveaway for the vinyl subway art.  The link to that post is in the header.  And if you've been eyeing anything in my Etsy shop, go grab it this weekend.  Coupon code THANKFUL11 will get you 40% off this weekend!

See you all next week!  And... GO!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Dinner in a Gift Basket

The inspiration for this gift comes from Darling Doodles, via Pinterest.

We have a set of friends that are very... conservative.  They have two little boys under the age of 3.  They are very careful with their money.  And they live 30 miles from civilization.  Ok, not really, but they do live in a small farming community about 30 miles away from us.  Because of this, they don't get a whole lot of date nights.  If you've been around here long, you know I am a big believer in date night.  So, here's a simple little basket they can use to make date night a no-fuss deal or just for the night when you need an easy dinner.

This would make a great gift basket for a wedding, a great housewarming gift or a neighbor gift during the busy holiday season.  This basket is a super simple edition, it even lacks a cute little gift tag.  Which is too bad, since there is one that you can print off at Darling Doodles...  whoops.  That's a total fail on my part.  I was going to add some seasonings, but My Mr Right and I couldn't agree on which seasonings to get... so, we didn't.  This cost us like $7.  That's right, $7.  A quick and easy (and CHEAP!) gift is my kinda gift!

I used a dish towel, a couple pot holders, a box of noodles, a bottle of sauce, a cheap plastic spoon and threw it all in a cheap colander.  Too easy, right?!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Hot Cocoa Gift Basket

Gift baskets are my go-to gift.  They are so easy to personalize and the possibilities are endless.  I have a cousin (actually, my dad’s cousin) who is more like a sister.  She and her hubby have been married just over 2 years.  She also has an obsession with all things Disney.  So… what better to give a still-newly-wed couple than an excuse to snuggle up together and enjoy some cocoa in super cute cups?

It’s hard to see, but I etched Mickey and Minnie Mouse heads on the mugs.  That’s the blurry, cloudy stuff in the photo.  =)

Throw some homemade cocoa mix in a mason jar, grab a box of brownies from the store, put a few candy canes and candy cane kisses in the mugs.  Add in some flavored syrups.  Etch the mugs with your design of choice.  Print off a cute tag (this will be a printable when I get back to our desktop next week) and call it all a fun gift. 

Not expensive (less than $10), but still cute and personalized (with the glass etching).  It was fun and easy to put together.  I’d call it a success.


Monday, November 21, 2011

Homemade Sugar Scrub

So, my little bro decided to take the plunge and he’s getting hitched at the end of December.

And, on a seemingly off topic tangent, my dad’s family does their Christmas gift exchange the day (or two) after Thanksgiving since everyone is already there.  It’s convenient and a tradition I enjoy and look forward to.  I can’t think of a better way to kick off the Christmas season than with family.  However, it means I have a whole month less to figure out Christmas gifts for the names we have that year. 

Ok, and now to merge those two thoughts, my brother is bringing his fiancĂ©e to our Thanksgiving festivities this year.  Not wanting my future sister-in-law to get stuck watching an hour or more of people opening gifts and singing Christmas carols out of tune while she received nothing, I threw a little something together for her: a gift basket.

Since I’ve only met her over a quick weekend trip she made here and talked to her a time or two on Skype, I didn’t know her very well to really personalize the basket.  So, I stuck to the generic girly stuff.  But, I always feel the need to make it a little personal so I stuck in a few homemade items, one of which is a sugar scrub.  This is a super easy and inexpensive.  It’s a great gift idea!  And, if you actually read all of that, you are my new hero for your perseverance.  Let’s make some sugar scrub!

  (Sorry the photo is a little blurry… I was in a hurry and didn’t have a chance to get all the settings set just right.)

Here’s the How:
- 1 pint size jar (or size of your choice)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 Tbs oil (I used coconut oil for a lighter scent and feel)
- 1 tsp finely ground sea salt
- a small squirt of dish soap
- 3 drops of soap dye (you could also use food coloring.  It’ll be in contact with the skin so briefly, it shouldn’t stain.  Disclaimer: I haven’t tried the food coloring, so be warned, I’m not to blame if it doesn’t work.  Test it on your legs or some where you can hide first.)
- 5 drops of essential oil (or use a little extract – vanilla, peppermint, coconut, lemon, raspberry, ect.)

1)  Mix the sugar and oil in a bowl.  Blend well.  Stir in the dish soap.  Add the salt.  The salt acts as a natural preservative, as well as an additional exfoliate.
2)  If you’ve chosen to add scent and color, add those now and mix well.
3)  Pour the scrub into the pint jar and seal.  You may need to stir the scrub up if it sits for very long, but a simple swish of a spoon will get you back in business in 2 seconds flat.

**You should avoid getting water in the jar, as it’ll grow things.  Yuck.  You can also store it in the fridge for longer life span, although it’s not necessary.  If you notice that it smells a little weird… toss it out, as the oil may have gone rancid.  Keeps for 2-3 months.

If you're interested, you can purchase sugar scrub HERE.  It's an all-new and improved recipe.

Or these are available HERE...


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Weekend Wander #56

Don't forget about the vinyl subway art giveaway!  Closes November 28th. 

Hey there, party people!  Welcome to the shin-dig.  There were some really cool links last week... unfortunately, I'm flying by the seat of my pants this week.  I'm trying to get Christmas gifts done so we can deliver them while when we see everyone next week for Thanksgiving.  On top of that, there is the normal stress of packing a family for any kind of trip.  Eek.  So, these will be quick and you'll have to do the leg work this week to find out what they are all about.  Sorry, but I have a TON of stuff to do still.

Randee's Organized Chaos  (I want one of these!)

Cooking With K (uhm... YUM!)

Whimsy Couture Patterns

Kam N Co  (Great Idea!)

If you were featured, feel free to grab a button from the side bar.  And let's get to the fun this week!  Please, keep it family friendly and don't link up a commercial site.  Annd... visit each other!  =)  Have a great weekend!

Bouncing Bundles of Joy

Ok, this is mostly just a housekeeping post... but don't forget to come link up to the party tonight.  And make sure you've got your entries in for the Vinyl Subway Art giveaway!

At the end of January I will be doing a series on babies to celebrate our new little's impending arrival (and make me a little less bitter about being 9 months pregnant)... and I need your help.  I'm looking for some guest posters to contribute to the series so I can have a little bit of time to try and get everything ready for our new little bundle of joy before the big day.  (I'll also be looking for some guests after I have the baby too, but that doesn't have to be a baby-themed project.)

I hope to have serveral of my own posts to contribute and plan on having a linky party for all things cute, cuddly and baby.  There will be a giveaway (possibly more than one, if anyone would like to sponsor...?) and some baby shower ideas and things like that.

I know that it's still like two and a half months out, but with the holidays coming, I thought I'd throw it out there and give you some time to get everything all put together.  If you would be interested in contributing, please let me know.  Tutorials should be baby-themed or something for a new mommy or family.  Baby shower gift ideas, nursery decor, baby shower decor and foods, baby toys, baby clothes and other accessories are some ideas of what I'm looking for.  I will take already published projects, as long as they have been posted before December 1, 2011.  That's next month.

If you contribute, I will post your site button on my sidebar for the entire length of the series, plus the month of February.  Who doesn't love a little free advertising?  If you sponsor a giveaway, I will post your button for 3 months from the day of your giveaway post.  Prizes don't have to be baby-oriented.  Anything family friendly is welcome.

So, if you would like to participate in this series (or guest post after our little one gets here), please email me at whilehewasnapping[at]gmail[dot]com. Let me know what you'd like to contribute and I'll send you a little more info. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Breaking Dawn Giveaway @ Bacon Time

A few months ago Mindie from Bacon Time with the Hungry, Hungry Hypo asked if I wanted to participate in a MASSIVE giveaway event she was putting together.  I said sure I would.  Well, the time has come and the event has begun.  Mindie has pulled together 66, yes 66, giveaways.  So, head over and enter to win some fun Breaking Dawn paraphenalia.  Not a Twilight fan, that's ok.  There are some very cool Etsy shops giving away store credit for whatever you want.  So head over to the GIGANTIC giveaway event.  Giveaways close on November 26th @ 8pm.


Egg Nog Sugar Cookies

These cookies kinda happened by accident.  Now, I am sure there are other egg nog sugar cookie recipes out there.  But apparently I live under a rock and had never had them before, never made them, and never even heard of them.  So, of course, I felt like a total genius when they turned out addictively delicious.

- 2 cups sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 4 tsp vanilla extract (1 Tbs+1 tsp)
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup egg nog
- 1/2 cup milk
- 4 eggs
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 7 cups flour

1)  Mix together the butter, sugar, salt, vanilla extract, milk, eggs, and baking powder.  When the mixture is smooth and consistent, add the flour a cup at a time.  If you need to add more flour, do so. 
2)  When the dough is no longer sticky, pull it out of the bowl and roll into 3/4” balls and place on a lightly greased baking sheet.
3)  Preheat the oven to 350F and bake for approximately 12 minutes or until cookies are a light golden brown.  Cool on cooling racks.
4)  Decorate anyway you like, although, I like them plain as well.  I drizzled a few with a sugar glaze and sprinkled them with white sugar crystals, but they really are amazingly tasty straight off the pan.
Yields approximately 50 cookies
These cookies freeze amazingly.  I roll them out into balls and then flash freeze them on a tray for an hour or two.  Then, transfer them to a zip top baggie and store in the freezer.  When you’re ready to bake them, pull a few out and place on a lightly greased baking sheet.  Bake at 375F for 15-20 minutes or until light golden brown.


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Thanksgiving Subway Art: Take 2

Wow, this is the 500th post.  So, let's make it a good one!

Thanks to my pregnancy brain… you get two version of Thanksgiving subway art this year.  The ones I posted on Sunday… and this set.  So, enjoy!

Click the images for your free, watermark-less download.
Thanksgiving Subway Art 2Thanksgiving Subway Art 2 color 
Happy Thanksgiving!


Monday, November 14, 2011

Personalized Vinyl Subway Art Giveaway!

This was supposed to go up this morning, but somewhere between Windows Live Writer and Blogger, it didn't happen.  Ah, well... better late than never, right?

If you were at the link party this weekend, you may have seen the little teaser about a giveaway today.  Well, here it is.  It’s been a while since I hosted a giveaway and I figured, since 1500 people have bothered to hit the follow button on GFC and we’re approaching 700 fans on Facebook, it was time for another giveaway.  So, let’s do this!

Up for grabs is an 8”x10” Personalized Subway Art Vinyl!

Designed, created, cut and shipped by yours truly, which means you are guaranteed an original and one of a kind piece.

These are similar to any of my printable versions of subway art, except it will be personalized to your specifications and in your choice of glossy white or black matte vinyl.  (Any of my subway art printables in my Etsy shop are available to be made into your vinyl piece, if you’d like one of those.)
Kitchen Themed Subway Art Printables - Great Home Decor
Boys 8x10" Digital Subway Art PrintableFamily Themed Subway Art Printable - Great Home Decor

You may choose any words or theme you would like.  It doesn’t have to be a family or couples theme.  I’ve done pieces for children, specific rooms (kitchen, bathroom, kid’s bedrooms, laundry rooms, ect) and hobby specific themes (golf, hunting, crafting, sewing, ect).  The possibilities are endless!  An 8x10” piece typically contains 10-15 words or phrases.  Have any weddings this holiday season? (I’ve got three!)  This would be a great gift to welcome a new couple to their exciting beginning.  And kids love things that have their names on them.  Why not give the kiddos in your life a gift all about them.  Need to spruce up the kitchen, living room, play room or another room in your home?  Subway art is very popular right now, why not add some to your decor?  And it’s a personalized piece, so it will still be unique, yet stylish. 

Here’s the How (to Enter):
1)  You must be a Follower of While He Was Napping Blog.  I don’t care if you get it in your inbox, your Google Reader or other RSS Feed, or just follow with GFC.  Leave me a comment telling me how you follow and what you most want for this holiday season.  Make sure both piece of info are there, please.

1)  Follow on Facebook.  Leave a comment here letting me know you do.
2)  Visit my Etsy Shop and heart your favorite item.  Come back and leave a comment telling me what you picked.
3)  Come see me on Pinterest.  You don’t have to follow or anything, but leave a comment here telling me what board of mine you like the best.
4)  Tell me your favorite holiday tradition.

Please leave SEPARATE COMMENTS for EACH entry.  Otherwise, you will only get one entry.  This giveaway will close Monday, November 28th, 2011 at 9:00pm PST.  I will choose the winner via and announce the lucky duck on Tuesday, the 29th, and the winner will have 24 hours to claim their prize before a new winner will be chosen.  You’ll have your personalized vinyl subway art by the end of the first week in December, giving you plenty of time before Christmas.

If you like this gift idea and would like to purchase your personalized subway art piece, you can do so in my Etsy Shop.  And, just because you’re awesome, use coupon code WHWN1500 to get an extra 15% off your purchase.  (P.S. the code works on everything, not just the vinyl.)  If you purchase before Nov 18th, you will have your order by the next week.  Otherwise, I will be out of town and orders placed Nov 18th – Nov 28th will be delivered by December 9th.

And… GO!


Sunday, November 13, 2011

Thanksgiving Subway Art Printable

Ok… so, you know the drill.  Click the image for your free, watermark-free download.  Use the white background to print on any paper you’d like.  Or grab yourself one with a colored background.


Thanksgiving Subway Art

Yellow Thanksgiving Subway Art Brown Thanksgiving Subway Art DK Yellow Thanksgiving Subway Art Red Thanksgiving Subway Art 




Thursday, November 10, 2011

Weekend Wander #55

Welcome to this week's par-tay! I haven't actually done much this week... Little Monkey decided to touch the stove after church on Sunday... and it was a Drill Weekend, so I home with him by myself.  Guess my little man is taller than I thought and I suppose it's time to start cooking on the back burners.  Anyhow, we've been dealing with 2nd degree burns this week and that hasn't left much time for crafting.  Especially since nap time has only been about an hour long the last few days.

So, here's to hoping your week has been a little more crafty than mine.  And to the craft-a-thon that will have to happen next week in order for me to get all of our Christmas/Wedding gifts ready before they need to be delivered the week of Thanksgiving.  Annd... some features:

Uhm, hello?  Pregnant woman, here... I HAD to give Anna a shout out for sharing this amazing chocolate cake.  Check out how to make your own at Ask Anna.

I need to make some of this Homemade Paint that Roslyn @ Sew Delicious shared.  Little Monkey is getting bored with our inside activities and it's just the very beginning of the "stuck inside" season.

Well, Little Monkey is starting to complain about his fingers again so... I guess I better go.  Thank you for linking up and congrats to the features.  Let's get to the party this week.

The rules:
1)  Family friendly links and no commercial sites.
2)  Visit the other partiers.  Don't be a wall flower.  Or a link and run partier.

I'd love for you to have link to Weekend Wander posted somewhere on your blog (all you have to do is copy and paste the button code in the sidebar) and of course to follow along, that way you won't miss anything.  That's all your call though.  (P.S.  There will be a giveaway Monday...)

Oh, and check out the {Our} Home for the Holidays series over at One Artsy Mama.  I'm posting about one of our holiday family traditions on Saturday.

Now, Let's PARTY!

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