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Grain, Seed, and Spice Filled Bottles

A while back I cleaned out my pantry and found entirely too many half-filled bags of rice and beans, shamefully out of date spices, and bottles of Torani with less than a teaspoon of syrup in them. Up until this past weekend I had then everything sitting in a “should just throw it away but can’t” pile on my kitchen counter. I was sure the kids and I could make some kind of art project with them. Hmm, what could I make with this stuff? It took me a couple of weeks of staring at the two items, sitting side by side, before I finally realized I should just put them together, duh. So we did!

Erin Sipes
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Craft Lightning–Holiday Napkin Rings

If you’ve been following along you may have noticed that every couple months I take part in the Craft Lightning series hosted by 30 Minute Crafts and The Country Chic Cottage. Guess what? It’s that time again! But, before I share my 15 minute craft I wanted to say thank you to both Caroline and Angie for all the work they’ve done over the years. They are two incredible ladies who have gone out of their way to provide countless platforms and opportunities for creative bloggers and I am very appreciative of their hard work. Now on to the craft!

Usually when the holidays roll around my attention focuses on ornaments and gift-making but this year I’m also looking towards our dining room table and thinking…napkin rings!  Surely the kids and I can come up with an easy napkin ring that takes less than 15 minutes to make, right?

Erin Sipes
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Monday Meme–Go to Work

As we all write our Monday to-do lists and look over this week’s calendar I thought I’d share a little inspiration.

@Mondaymeme #Inspiration #Gotowork www.myveryeducatedmother.com
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Erin Sipes
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No Ugly Christmas Ornaments Round-Up

As promised here is the ultimate collection of over 50 tutorials and project ideas that will ensure your tree doesn’t have a single ‘ugly’ ornament! Thanks again to all the great bloggers who’ve been a part of the No Ugly Ornament Series these past few years!

  1. Wine Cork Tassels
  2. Paper Birds
  3. Mini Trees from The Sewing Loft
  4. Okra Spikes
  5. Magazine Ornaments
  6. Paperback Lion Ornaments
  7. Medallions
  8. Vintage Glitter Ornaments
  9. Owl Ornaments
  10. Crystals and Twine Ornaments
  11. Vintage Santa
  12. Paper Snowflakes
  13. Quilted Trees
  14. Martha Inspired Looped Ornaments
  15. Caged Animal Ornaments
  16. Stash Cans
  17. Paper Globe Ornaments
  18. 3-D Shapes
  19. Origami Dress Ornaments
  20. Felt Garland
  21. Citrus and Spice Ornaments
  22. Paper Trees

  23. Paper Ballerina Ornaments
  24. Origami Elf Boots
  25. Paper Snowflakes (different pattern)
  26. Glitter Filled Glass Ornaments
  27. Mini House Ornament
  28. Snowy Wonderland Ornament
  29. Poured Paint Ornaments
  30. Childproof Snowflake Ornaments
  31. Paintbrush Santas
  32. Hand Stamped Ornaments
  33. Glittered Seashells
  34. Felt Snowflakes
  35. Family Frame Ornaments
  36. Glittered Snowflakes
  37. Jeweled Podgeable Ornaments
  38. Gem Icicle Ornaments
  39. Washi Tape Monogrammed Ornaments
  40. Sequined Ornaments
  41. Vintage Candy Cane Ornaments
  42. Paper Starbursts
  43. Snowman Ornaments
  44. Christmas Toilet Paper Roll Vignette Ornaments
  45. Fuzzy Christmas Owls

  46. Christmas Vignette Ornaments
  47. Scrabble Tile Ornaments
  48. Gingerbread Salt Dough Men
  49. Shadowbox Ornaments
  50. Feathered Balls
  51. Salt Dough Ornaments
  52. Snow Ornaments
  53. Suitcase Ornament
  54. Painted Acorns
  55. Button Candy Canes
  56. Vintage Paper Ornaments
  57. Christmas Ornament Makeover
  58. Painted Glass Ornaments
  59. Faux Porcelain Flowers
  60. Easy, No-Sew Owls
  61. Book Page and Glitter Snowflakes
  62. It’s a Gourd Thing Ornaments
  63. Metal Washer Snowmen
  64. Mirrored Ornaments
  65. Scrappy Stars
  66. Wine Cork Candle Ornaments
  67. Christmas List Ornaments
Erin Sipes
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No Ugly Ornament Series Day 5 Wrap Up

NUO2013 Feature

If you know my friend Heather from The Sewing Loft you know she’s an awesome seamstress but she had everyone in mind, skilled to beginner, when she came up with this Easy No-Sew Owl Ornament! Be sure to check it out and grab the free template she’s also providing!


Sometimes I like to challenge the kids with a project because everyone needs a challenge now and then. This Metal Washer Snowman from Cyn and Samantha, aka The Gagen Girls, looks like a great one for them to try!

Book Page Snowflake ornament I Onekriegerchick

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I’m a sucker for a book page project and this Book Page and Glitter Snowflake, from One Krieger Chick, is too beautiful not to make!

This was something completely new to me, I’ve never seen Gourd Ornaments like these make by Lisa from Stuff-Such. I love how festive and colorful they are and hope I’m able to find some small gourds at my local farmer’s market to make some of my own!

Today I shared these Mirrored Ornaments they were a take on the Disco Ball-like ornaments I’ve seen on Pinterest.

This has been such a fun week I’m sorry to see it end, but don’t worry the ornament love will still be going strong! I’ll be sharing a Round-Up of ALL the No Ugly Ornaments from the past three years next week so be sure to stop back by and if you haven’t already done so already pin the 2013 No Ugly Ornament Series page to have this year’s ornaments tutorials on hand!

@mvemotherErin - My Very Educated MotherErin on Google +MyveryeducatedmotherMy Very Educated MotherImage Map
Erin Sipes
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#NUO2013 Mirrored Ornaments

I can’t believe it’s the last day of the Series already! Here’s one more ornament to keep your tree from being ugly. Around Pinterest I kelp seeing mirrored ball but I wanted to try something a little flatter. So I created these Mirrored Letter Ornaments. They’re super easy and cheap, plus they give you an excuse to demolish any old CDs sitting around!


  • old CDs
  • old scissors – I say old but what I mean is a pair you don’t mind destroying
  • glue ( I know I have glitter glue shown but I ended up using a white crafting glue)
  • black puffy paint
  • cardstock

#NUO2013 Mirrored Ornaments


I started off by printing some of our family initials onto cardstock in a big bubble letter font and cutting them out. Be sure to use a hole punch to make a hole to hang your ornament!

#NUO2013 Mirrored Ornaments 1

Next, I cut up a few CDs, this wasn’t easy and I had pieces flying everywhere! I might try cutting them with an X-acto knife next time. After I had a good handful of little mirrored pieces I started gluing them to the cardstock letters.

#NUO2013 Mirrored Ornaments 2

Finally I used the puffy paint to outline the pieces and give them more of a stained glass look. You can repeat the process on the back or just paint it black. String them up and you’re ready to go!

Be sure to check back tonight for the last wrap-up of the week AND next week look for the ultimate Christmas ornament round-up!

Erin Sipes
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No Ugly Ornament Series Day 4 Wrap Up

I can’t believe the week is almost over! I hope you’ve been enjoying the series, here are the ornaments from today!

I can not tell you how many times I’ve seen bells and ornaments like this in thrift stores but walked away because, what was there to do with them? This is what you do with them! You take a tip from Pet Scribbles and give them a Christmas Ornament Makeover.

Painted Christmas Glass Ornament

I have thought about making Painted Ornaments like these with the kids on numerous occasions but I’m so glad that Barb was real about the process in her post. At least I know now that it might take a while and I’ll probably have to have the kids work on more than one at a time!

#NUO2013 Faux Porcelain Ornaments

As I was looking over my Faux Porcelain Ornament post from this morning and realized I completely forgot to say that I tied a red ribbon to these flowers to make them into hanging ornaments. I also considered wrapping them onto a skewer with floral tape to make a spike for the tree.

Tomorrow’s the last day of the No Ugly Ornament Series, be sure to stop by we’ve got a full lineup to wrap things up!

@mvemotherErin - My Very Educated MotherErin on Google +MyveryeducatedmotherMy Very Educated MotherImage Map
Erin Sipes
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#NUO2013 Faux Porcelain Ornaments

Once upon a time, I pinned a project, which I can’t find now, that showed how to make faux porcelain flowers that could be used as ornaments or pretty much whatever you wanted. The thing that set this tutorial apart was that it used plaster NOT spray paint to create both the look and feel of real porcelain.

Since I couldn’t find the link I decided to improvise and try out what I could. Here are the results!

Erin Sipes
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No Ugly Ornament Series Day 3 Wrap Up

Christmas commercials are on the television and I’m already seeing Black Friday ad previews, Christmas is definitely in the air! Here are three more ornaments to add to your Christmas crafting to-do list!

Button Candy Cane Christmas Ornaments -- handmade ornament tutorial that will have your tree full of button candy canes in no time.

My daughter was looking over my shoulder when I checked out this Button Candy Cane Ornament from The Country Chic Cottage. She fell in love with them, decided to raid my craft stash, and dragged out all the red and white buttons she could find. Guess we’ll be making a pair of our own!

Processed with VSCOcam

There are some things that I’m always happy to see and vintage paper is one of them. Mommy Envy is sharing a cheap and easy Vintage Paper Ornament and she’s suggesting ways to give them a more personal touch such as using comic books!

#NUO2013 #AcornOrnaments #Christmas #ornaments

Today I shared our little Painted Acorn Ornaments. They’ll get lost on our big Christmas tree but they’re the perfect size for the tabletop ones we set up around the house!

I hope you’ve been enjoying the NUO Series so far, be sure to stop back by tomorrow or if you missed any from earlier this week just click on the box at the top of the page!

@mvemotherErin - My Very Educated MotherErin on Google +MyveryeducatedmotherMy Very Educated MotherImage Map
Erin Sipes
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#NUO2013 Painted Acorn Ornaments

Acorns, they’re so little they get lost on most Christmas trees but I still love them! There are so many different ways to create ornaments with them but I chose what I thought would be the easiest. In the end, it wasn’t extremely hard, BUT, it wasn’t as foolproof as I’d hoped it would be! 

Erin Sipes
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No Ugly Ornament Series Day Two Wrap Up

It’s Day Two of the No Ugly Ornament Series, have you been keeping up!

Suitcase DIY Christmas Ornament Craft Project to remember your family vacations StuffedSuitcase.com travel

This Suitcase Ornament from The Stuffed Suitcase is seriously clever and I love that it offers a fun new way to transform jewelry gift boxes!

snow ornament at 30 Minute Crafts

How pretty is this Snow Ornament from 30 Minute Crafts? I bought a couple bags of fake snow a couple years ago and I’ve been waiting for the perfect project to use it…the wait is over!

You know you’ve met your match when the creations your kids come up with look better than your own, as was the case with the Salt Dough Ornaments I featured today!

We’ve got a full day of ornaments coming up tomorrow you’ll want to pin, post, tweet, and share! Be sure to come back then!

@mvemotherErin - My Very Educated MotherErin on Google +MyveryeducatedmotherMy Very Educated MotherImage Map
Erin Sipes
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#NUO2013 Salt Dough Ornaments (What I Learned)

Tips for Making Salt Dough Ornaments

Seriously, I’ve never made salt dough ornaments. I’ve tried, but I usually just let the kids play with the dough. This time around, my goal was to make them look like these, or these, or holy heck these! Guess what, it didn’t work out, but the ornaments the kids made look really cute!

Erin Sipes
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Day One No Ugly Ornament Series Wrap-Up

Day one of the No Ugly Ornament Series is drawing to a close. Here are the featured ornaments from today!

gingerbread men title
Over at aka Design they’re sharing how to make Gingerbread Salt Dough Ornaments. I’m actually sharing my salt dough experience tomorrow…let’s just say I wish I would have read their post first!

Cyn over at Creative Cynchronicity has created these truly original Shadowbox Ornaments out of recycled ribbon spools. I can promise you I will be making these later this month!

Scrabble Ornaments
And you might have already seen my own submission for the day, Scrabble Ornaments. Why hadn’t I made these before, they were so easy! Oh yeah, I was waiting to find a Scrabble game at the thrift store!

There's something about feather ornaments on the Christmas tree that I just love and these ones from Sweet Charli’s look easy enough for the kids to make too!

See ya tomorrow!
@mvemotherErin - My Very Educated MotherErin on Google +MyveryeducatedmotherMy Very Educated MotherImage Map
Erin Sipes
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#NUO2013 Scrabble Ornaments

It begins, the 2013 No Ugly Ornament Series! This year we’re doing things a little different, for one thing, I’m posting in the morning and evening every night this week, you can read more about it here and check out the preview ornament!

As for as the ornaments I’ll be featuring this week, well, I’ve had a list of ornaments that I say I’m going to make every year but I’ve never actually gotten around to creating until now. It was a regular ornament making marathon! Case in point, today’s little bauble the Scrabble tile ornament. These were so easy I don’t know what kept me from putting them together sooner!

Erin Sipes
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