Valentines Day DIY: Free Printables For The Perfect Valentines Day

February 14th is a little over 2 weeks away, so the time to plan and craft is now! Whether you are celebrating with kids, or someone special we’ve collected some great resources from around the web to help you with decorations & cards. The best thing about these crafts is that they could totally work for other celebrations, like a girl’s birthday party. So grab your printer, scissors, glue, and craft up some love!

Printable Valentines Banner – This banner comes from the blog Feece Fun. How adorable is this banner? It would be great to use at home, or to decorate a classroom. This printable would make a great template for a birthday banner too!

Image & Printable from FleeceFun.com.

Valentines Day Printable Breakfast In Bed Kit – This printable kit comes from Design Is Yay, a great blog full of awesome tutorials and freebies. Such a beautiful little collection here! Breakfast in bed would be the perfect way to show that someone special just how much you care. Again this printable could easily be reused as a template for a birthday, Mothers’ Day, Fathers’ Day, etc. breakfast in bed!

Breakfast In Bed DIY Printable (and image) from Design Is Yay!

Printable Kid’s Valentines – These adorable valentines come from Ellinee. These animals are too sweet.

Kids Valentine Printables (and image) from Ellinee.

How do you usually celebrate Valentine’s day? Do you have a sweetheart this year?

3 Free Party Planning Resources

Planning a party big or small can be overwhelming. From the food to the decorations to the activities… there are a lot of aspects to cover. Today we’ve gathered some resources to help you keep organized while your plotting the details of your next soiree!

Party Planning Checklist by Handmade Charlotte. How cute is this printable?

Party Planning Checklist by Handmade Charlotte

Kids Birthday Party Planning Checklist by Catch My Party. This handy list is great if you are planning a party for your little one!

Kids’ Birthday Party Checklist by Catch My Party

Birthday Party Printables by delicateCONSTRUCTION. These four printables will have all your party prep bases covered.

Printables by delicateCONSTRUCTION.

Do you make a checklist when you are planning a party?

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3 DIY Tutorials for Chain Bracelets

2013 is here and we have 3 great tutorials for making adorable chunky chain bracelets. These bracelets are a great trend for this year and would make great gifts (but be sure to make an extra for yourself)! The first tutorial that is our favorite combination of trendy and sweet comes from the blog Honestly WTF.

DIY Woven Chain Bracelet – we love the color combination and the final result from this tutorial by Honestly WTF.

Image & Tutorial by Honestly WTF.

DIY Rope-Wrapped Chain Bracelet – this great tutorial comes from I Spy DIY. We’d love to do one in nautical colors!

Image & Tutorial from I Spy DIY.

DIY Chain Link Bracelet Part 1 – great tutorial for an adorable chain bracelet from SWELLMAYDE!

Image & Tutorial from SWELLMAYDE.

Which is your favorite chain bracelet?

Happy New Year! Looking Back to the Best of 2012!

Image from the Huffington Post.

Happy New Year to all our readers and supporters out there! It was a fantastic year in 2012, we were able to help bring joy and relief to hundreds of kids in San Jose during their birthday months. And in 2013 we hope to reach even more :). With 2012 behind us it is important to reflect back on what was good, so today we have our top 5 posts from this past year! You guys really like to craft don’t you ;)!

Make A Birthday Wishes Top 5 Posts in 2012:

  1. DIY Decorations: Paper Stars – A great tutorial for handmade paper stars perfect for a party or just because!
  2. DIY Party Decorations: Pennant Banner – Both fabric and paper options abound in this post!
  3. DIY Owl Crafts: Part 1 – Seriously adorable owl crafts at a variety of difficulty levels! Who doesn’t love owls?
  4. DIY Crafts: Button Bracelets – So simple and so cute. These make great little gifts or packaging additions.
  5. 3 Party Favor Packing Ideas We Love – And apparently you love these unique ideas too!

What was your favorite post this past year? And what would you like to see more of in 2013?

If you are interested in supporting what we do at Make A Birthday Wish or learning more you can go to our website by clicking here. Have a great New Year’s Day!

DIY Gift Ideas: Homemade Coupon Books

Holiday Coupons Image from One Artsy Mama

Christmas is just around the corner… no seriously it’s next week! And we at Make a Birthday Wish are extremely excited for all the love and giving that takes place this time of year. If you are still lost for gift ideas, then have no fear, we’ve got a collection of great resources to help you make a great gift for just about anyone on your list (even the person that has everything!). The best part about this gift idea, it is practically free (except for the paper it’s printed on) or close to it.

DIY coupon books are the perfect solution for someone that is difficult to buy for, or if you want to give something more meaningful and personal this year. You generally are giving your time (a foot rub, scrubbing the shower, etc.) , or maybe entitling a friend to a cup of coffee, dinner, or a movie. One of our favorite things about DIY coupon books is they let you be as creative as you want to be. You can completely hand-make your book, or use a free online site to generate a clean-looking book that you can print out. To get started think about the person you are giving the coupons to. What do they enjoy doing, what do they need more of in their life (maybe time, or quiet), what do they hate to do (clean, laundry)? Then make a list of possible coupons:

  • Back massage
  • Cleaning the bathroom
  • Organizing the closet
  • A cup of coffee & good conversation
  • Their favorite dinner
  • A trip to the bookstore
  • A night of babysitting
  • An at home spa day… the list could go on forever

Once you have your list you can use MS Word, PowerPoint, Keynote, Photoshop, Online tools, or old fashioned paper, glue, and scissors to create a coupon book. Here are some of our favorite resources:

Have you ever made your own coupons or vouchers before? What kind of coupons did you come up with?

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Don’t Forget Your Pets This Holiday Season: DIY Pet Treats & Sweets

Birthdays and holidays usually revolve around people. But our canine and feline friends are also an important and special part of our lives and memories. So while your making plans, buying gifts, and baking goodies this holiday season don’t forget to share the love with your pet! Today we’ve got a few recipes for our favorite dog and cat treats that you can bake with love & simple ingredients at home. Enjoy, we know your pets will!

Peanut Butter & Pumpkin Dog Treats – this recipe from All Recipes is a delicious way to let your pet enjoy the flavors of the season. And what dog doesn’t love peanut butter?

Peanut Butter & Pumpkin Dog Treats from All Recipes

Apple Cheddar Dog Biscuits – the perfect blend of sweet and savory! This tasty (for dogs that is) recipe comes from Martha Steward and is sure to have your pooch begging for more.

Apple Cheddar Dog Biscuits from Martha Stewart

Chewy Cat Treats – This beautifully written post and recipe comes from the delightful blog Joy The Baker. She whipped up a batch of these special treats to celebrate 2 years with her adorable feline friend. Check out the recipe if there is a special cat in your life!

Chewy Cat Treats from Joy The Baker

Have you ever thrown a “party” or whipped up something special for the family pet? Do you include them in holiday celebrations? If you try out a recipe let us know what your pet thinks!

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DIY Christmas Ornaments!

There are a ton of tutorials out there for crafting your own ornaments. Handmade ornaments not only look great on your tree, but they also make fantastic (and affordable) gifts! Crafting a new ornament each year could also be a special holiday tradition you start with your friends or family. And if your family isn’t down to craft you could see if there is a craft swap nearby where fellow crafters get together and swap handmade ornaments. Check out these tutorials for dozens upon dozens of DIY ornaments!

25 Christmas Ornaments To Make

This collection of tutorials comes from The Ornament Girl and is full of really beautiful decorations.

The Best Handmade Christmas Ornaments

We would expect nothing but the best from Martha Stewart! These tutorials are really divine and the results are awesome!

20 Easy Handmade Holiday Ornaments

This collection comes from HGTV and several tutorials involve easy-to-find natural materials!

Do you usually make ornaments for your tree? Feel free to share pictures 🙂

Our Top Craft Books For This Holiday Season

If you are looking for a unique, thoughtful, and purposeful gift for a friend or your children, why not give them a book? Books make wonderful gifts and today we have selected 5 of our favorite crafting books. So you can be sure that your gift will not only give the gift of knowledge but also help unlock the creative juices of your someone special! Several of the books we selected even feature “green” craft ideas and specialize in crafts suitable for younger kids! Onto our picks!

Craft-A-Day: 365 Simple Handmade Projects

This wonderful little gem is jam packed with tutorials and crafting ideas. Great for adults and kids alike, and a pretty good bang for your buck at only $16.47 on Amazon.


Drawing Lab For Mixed Media Artists: 52 Creative Exercises To Make Drawing Fun

This book is perfect for both seasoned drawers and beginners. It will help reinforce good techniques and expand any readers’ artistic side. And with 52 exercises, the book lends itself well to a year-long self-guided study in drawing. Pick it up from Amazon for $15.63.

 

Green Crafts For Children: 35 Step-by-Step Projects Using Natural, Recycled, and Found Materials

This book would make a great gift to both kids and parents looking for ways to engage their children in the arts while teaching them about environmental stewardship. A great deal at $11.73 on Amazon!

 

Sewing School: 21 Projects Kids Will Love To Make

This book is fantastic if you are interested in teaching your kids how to sew and is available on Amazon for $11.53.

The Big Green Book Of Recycled Crafts

A great collection of crafts that reuse, repurpose, and recycle materials into handmade treasures. Just $3.98 on Amazon!

Do you craft with friends or your family for fun? What kinds of crafts do you do?

 

Have A Paper Holiday: 3 DIY Paper Crafts For A Homemade Christmas!

At MABW we love crafting, reusing, re-purposing, and putting a personal touch on special occasions. Today we’ve got 3 tutorials to share with you that will have you crafting most everything you need this Holiday season with paper!

DIY Recycled Paper Tree

We love this idea! Imagine using brown packaging paper, newspaper, or magazines to make mini versions of this tree? Can you say great centerpiece for practically nothing?!!!

DIY Tutorial for Recycled Paper Christmas Tree by Casa Sugar

DIY Tutorial for Recycled Paper Christmas Tree by Casa Sugar

DIY Star Wars Snowflakes or Garland

These snowflakes would make any nerd proud. Such a fun idea, you could try it with different colored paper too!

Free Printable Template from Matters of Grey

Free Printable Template from Matters of Grey

Free Holiday Gift Tags

These printables from Sass & Peril make adorable homemade packaging a cinch this holiday season!

Gift Tag Printables by Sass & Peril

Gift Tag Printables by Sass & Peril

Which is your favorite holiday paper craft? We are partial to the Star Wars Snowflakes 🙂

Our Favorite Cookie In A Jar Recipes

Cookies are amazing any time of the year, but fresh baked cookies at Christmas time takes amazing to an all new level. If you are looking for great cookie recipes to bake up for a party or searching for a great gift idea we think you’ll love these recipes we have collected from around the web. Some of the recipes even accommodate special dietary needs (vegan & gluten free).

Cranberry Hootycreeks from All Recipes

Cranberry Hootycreeks – Recipe from All Recipes.

These cookies look great in the jar and taste delightful. You could even change out the cranberries, chocolate chips, and nuts to suit your personal tastes. Dried currants, walnuts, & white chocolate chips could be a lovely combination! This recipe would make a great gift for a neighbor, coworker, or as a hostess/host gift if you are visiting family or friends over the holidays.

Julia’s Best Chocolate Chip Cookies – Recipe from All Recipes.

Chocolate chip cookies rank at the top of most people’s favorite cookie lists. Simple, chocolatey goodness. This recipe is very delicious and again provides opportunity for experimentation (different kinds of chocolate chips, or swapping chocolate chips for M&M’s etc..). If you aren’t sure what cookies your friend would want, chocolate chip is a safe bet.

Gluten Free & Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies – Recipe from Oh She Glows

This recipe promises thin, crisp, and chewy chocolate chip cookies that even those on the most restricted diets can enjoy. But don’t get us wrong, these cookies aren’t really a compromise. They are kind of amazing. Angela’s recipe uses a mix of almond & oat flour to create this crowd pleasing cookie. Scroll to the bottom of her post to see the recipe!

Vegan & Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies From Oh She Glows

Gingerbread Men Cookie Mix In A Jar – Recipe from Food For My Family

These gingerbread men are tasty and adorable. We love the idea of attaching cookie cutters to the jar to really complete the gift! We love this recipe for a holiday staple! Shaina even included free printables—holiday gifting can’t get much easier!

Gingerbread Men In A Jar Recipe from Food For My Family

Have you ever given cookies in a jar before? What are your favorite recipes?

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