Thursday, August 21, 2014

DIY Canopy for a Princess Bed

For the past year Hazel has been scared of everything. She does not like to be in her room alone or for that matter almost anywhere in our house. One day she told me she might feel better if she had a canopy. Now being a girly girl myself, I had seen this idea on one of those home improvement/design shows and loved it and tried it for myself when I was single. Steve did not really want a canopy over our bed, so we packed it away in case we had a daughter some day. I should add we inherited Hazel's bedroom set from my grandparents (yes, my Grandmother Hazel slept on that bed frame), so we did not buy her a bed. If I had my say and bought one it would have been a canopy bed.

To make this easy canopy for a bed (I guess technically it is half a canopy), you need a wooden curtain rod, two matching small wooden plaques, fabric and screws and anchors for the screws. First cut the wooden rod in half (I obviously did not measure when I did this). Then put the cut edge against each plaque. I glued them, but would recommend screwing them together with flat headed screws (on one of them this eventually had to be done). If you want to paint them (I did) paint them now. Then hang them high above each side of the bed using the wall anchors to make sure the screws stay in the wall and the rods do not fall on top of anyone.

Once hung, hang the fabric over each pole and decorate however you want. I glued fake pink roses into the holes on the ends of the rods and draped over fake ivy. When it was over my bed I also had a string of pink star shaped lights going over it. We decided she didn't need that and kept her star light under the canopy. 

Apparently Pumpkin (one of our cats) approved of it since she does not usually sleep in Hazel's room. And of course Hazel loved it the moment she saw it. We put it up when she was at Nonni's. We told her we had a surprise for her and I told her she had to search for it like and Easter egg. This is her reaction when she saw it.

When I had it as a single woman, my good friend and landlady owned a store. We bought the share fabric wholesale and she gave me a pillowcase that read: "The Princess Sleeps Here." The pillowcase is on one of Hazel's pillows now. Needless to say she loves it all. Here is another view of it from when I was single. This was my winter look for the bed. I wanted to match my newly finished winter quilt.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Shed to Clubhouse Transformation

For as long as I can remember Hazel has loved little playhouses. She has really wanted one, but we never got around to getting one. We kept wanting to get her a special one that she would want to use for many years, but we never found the money since those tend to be so expensive. Since we added a garage to our house, Steve has not been storing as much in his shed and decided to give Hazel the shed as her clubhouse/playhouse. She was excited for this and we talked about decorating it with curtains and a rug. While out shopping Hazel chose the pink shag rug for the clubhouse. I pulled out pink sparkly curtains I had bought on clearance and planned to use for a birthday party, but never did. We hung them with a thin branch from a tree that had fallen in the yard and used nails to keep them up. 

Hazel asked if we could paint the walls. The walls are unfinished, so this would not be easy. Then I remembered the Minnie Mouse Bow-tique background from her birthday party and pulled it out. While there I saw all the other decorations and brought them as well. We had so much fun decorating the clubhouse. She loves it. I hung the decorations with thumbtacks so they would stay. Thanks to Oriental Trading for letting us review these great decorations!!

The background basically covers the back wall and it looks great up. Hazel is so excited to have it. We put the photo props and extra ears from the party in a basket next to it. Then we started hanging the paper decorations we had from the party (from Oriental Trading and ones we made). 

We went in for more things and Hazel wanted some of the pages from the calendar we had used for decorations as well. She also brought out the little Minnie Mouse head decorations we made and our Pin-the-Bow-on-Minnie head we only put her bow on it.

Hazel wanted to hang the bows all around and I added the garland we had made. Meanwhile Daddy worked on hanging the chandelier cover I bought (on clearance again for a party, but never used) over the single light bulb light. In the clubhouse Hazel has her cardboard oven I made her, our wicker porch furniture, her sandbox and sand toys as well as many of her outside toys.

We also found a great home for the giant inflatable flamingo!! Hazel loves having it out there. It is from her flamingo party and thanks to Oriental Trading again! I love that we were able to decorate this clubhouse and make it special for her with mostly things we already had and got to reuse all the decorations again! Hazel decided it looked like Minnie's Bow-tique and wanted to have her fancy phone, cash register and computer out there as well so she can play Bow-tique. We added them at the end of our decorating.

 Now she has the perfect place to play with her friends outside and it lends to so much creative play!! I love it!

How have you been able to reuse party decorations? Any other creative ideas?

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Book Review: Hello Bali! by Giselle Shardlow

Disclosure: Kids Yoga Stories gave me a copy of this book free of charge. All opinions in my review are my own and I did not receive any other compensation. As in all my reviews I am providing links for your ease, but receive no compensation.

Multicultural Kids Blog has started a new Multicultural Kids Product Promotional Services. I signed up to help promote an wonderful kids yoga book by Giselle Shardlow. We have already enjoyed two of her books previously and Hazel loves doing yoga along with the book. This book is called Hello, Bali and is about a girl from India visiting Bali with her family. Since Bali is in Indonesia, it ties in perfectly with All About Indonesia that we reviewed last month.
Hello, Sun

Going through this book introduces you to a bit of the Bali culture. The book starts with saying hello to the sun in Bali. Then it goes through some of the sights in Bali from the beach (sailboat, dolphin, sunbathers) to the mountains.

Then you get a bit of the culture with dancing Ganesha.

The book talks about the mountains and the market as well as the waterfalls. The beautiful illustrations help the reader to picture what Bali is like and also models the yoga poses for the child. It goes on with poses for the priests in the temples and the farmers in the fields. As well as the monkeys in the trees.

Farmers Planting in the Muddy Rice Fields
Going through this book gives the reader a wonderful picture of Bali and the yoga motions help the images stick as well as being perfect for the child who has trouble sitting still during a book. 
Excerpts from the Hello, Bali

As with all of Giselle's books, it is available in English or Spanish! The book ends with a list a picture of all the yoga positions as well as a bit of Indonesian language and a map of Bali. We have once again enjoyed this yoga book and loved learning more about Bali. The book and movements gave each of us an image of what it would be like to be on vacation in Bali and what we would see. We highly recommend the book!

For more on yoga for kids and Indonesia, check out: