{simple} Felt Elf Boot Ornament

Every year I make simple felt ornaments to send to my family and friends. I always come up with an easy design, so I can mail the ornaments with Christmas cards. This year, I made adorable elf boot ornaments, and today I'm sharing the step-by-step instructions.


To make a simple felt elf boot ornament:

1) Cut two elf boot shapes from patterned felt and two "stocking tops" from green felt. Then, cut a piece of white yarn to use as a hanger.

2) Sew the yarn to the top of one of the "boot" pieces.

3) Stitch the front and back of the boots together.

4) Sew the green tops to the boots.

The result is an adorable and whimsical tree ornament.


I made a bunch of them, and sent them out with my Christmas cards. Cute, right?


It's a lot of work to make so many ornaments each year, but it is one of my favourite traditions. I hope my friends and family enjoy their fun "elf boot" ornaments this year... and I hope you make one for your tree!


Gina
 (aka East Coast Mommy)

Hockey HACKS for the Holidays

I'm a mom of three hockey-obsessed boys (one in Novice, one in Atom, and one in PeeWee). My boys eat, sleep, and breath the sport they love, and (of course) hockey is a big part of our Christmas celebrations. So, today I thought I would share some of our favourite HOCKEY HACKS for the holidays.


We have a Christmas tree made of hockey sticks. Seriously, how cute is this? I took a bunch of old hockey sticks, and I used (what else?) hockey tape to attach them at the top. Then, I added a Santa hat and some lights. It's a little tacky, but my boys love it, and it looks great at night!


And we always find fun and unique hockey gifts under our tree. You can find some of our favourite gift ideas for hockey players here.


We even incorporate hockey into our favourite Christmas Carols.... and you can download this one for free. Right-click on the picture below, save it to your computer, and print it like a regular 8X10 photo.


We really love the version that our Elf on the Shelf printed and framed for us. 


Are you a hockey mom? Is hockey a big part of your holiday celebrations? Maybe I'll see you at the rink! ;-)


Gina
 (aka East Coast Mommy)

Memorial Ornaments

In October, I lost my beloved grandfather, and my boys lost their great grandfather. He was very special to my whole family, and with Christmas coming, I wanted to find a way to incorporate his memory into our celebrations. So, I thought I would make the members of my family "memorial ornaments".


I took a blanket that belonged to my grandfather, and I used it to make the wings on bird ornaments. I sewed felt pieces together, added the heart-shaped wing, and used fabric paint to make an eye.


I love how this little ornament turned out, don't you? I can't wait to hang it on my tree each year.


I'm mailing the rest of them out (to my family members) with my Christmas cards.


With each card, I sent a little note that said, "The wing of this bird is made from Grampie's blanket. I hope you hang it proudly on your Christmas tree, and that it reminds you of his kindness and loving heart.
It was a lot of work to sew all these ornaments, but I hope that they will bring a little comfort to those I love during this difficult holiday season. And, perhaps one of my readers will be inspired to make memorial ornaments in memory of someone they loved as much as I loved my Grampie.




Gina
 (aka East Coast Mommy)

2017 Elf on the Shelf Calendar

Anyone else find it hard to come up with Elf on the Shelf ideas every day? Well... I have you covered with a full month of Elf on the Shelf ideas and FREE printable props and notes. I put everything in a simple calendar (below), and I have included helpfullinks to all the info you'll need to make this month magical.


To print the calendar: right click on the picture above, save it to your computer, and print it like a regular 8X10 photo.

And, here are the details you'll need to complete each of the items outlined on the calendar.

Before the elf arrives - Santa sends a letter letting the kids know that the Elf is coming soon.


Then...

December 1 - Elf on the Shelf brings a "Welcome Breakfast".


December 2 - The Elf on the Shelf wraps books and movies for a countdown to Christmas.


December 3 - Elf on the Shelf gets his own key.


December 4 - Elf on the Shelf draws a self portrait or builds an Igloo.



December 5 - Elf on the Shelf brings donuts.


December 6 - Elf on the Shelf hides in the light fixture (far away from the bulb that could burn him/her) or he covers all the family photos with pictures of himself.



December 7 - Elf on the shelf brings a candy cane scavenger hunt.


December 8 - Elf on the Shelf hides in a Christmas wreath.


December 9 - Elf on the Shelf brings a gingerbread house for the kids to build and decorate.


December 10 - Elf on the Shelf brings hot chocolate from the North Pole.


December 11 - Elf on the Shelf takes a nap in a kleenex box.


December 12 - Elf on the Shelf brings "Elf Kisses" or he could build his own Elf on the Shelf Kissing Booth.



December 13 - Elf on the Shelf plays with blocks or Star Wars toys.



December 14 - Elf on the Shelf brings "North Pole Treats".


Or he could host his own Elf on the Shelf bake sale for charity.


December 15 - Elf on the Shelf builds a chair out of LEGO.


December 16 - Elf on the Shelf brings supplies to decorate "sugar cone trees".


December 17 - Elf on the Shelf brings a letter from Santa.


December 18 - Elf on the Shelf takes a marshmallow bath.


December 19 - Elf on the Shelf makes snowman donuts from mini donuts, mini chocolate chips, and candy corn.


December 20 - Elf on the Shelf hides in the Christmas tree.


December 21 - Elf on the Shelf hangs from the cupboard doors.


December 22 - Elf on the Shelf brings a Christmas movie.


December 23 - Elf on the Shelf builds a snowman out of marshmallows, and brings a tiny note answering questions the kids have been asking about him.


December 24 - Elf on the Shelf brings magic "Elf Seeds".


December 25 - Elf on the Shelf leaves a good bye note and a special movie.


Or he can write a goodbye message with spray snow.


I hope you try some of these ideas with your little ones, and you if you have some other fun ideas, I'd love to hear about them.  Feel free to share some of your Elf on the Shelf adventures in the comments below.

♥ 
Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Packing Essentials for Holiday Travel

This time of year, many people are travelling, and parents know that travelling with kids comes with many challenges. It is of utmost importance to keep the kids comfortable, well fed, and entertained! Our family has gone on many trips (hockey trips, plane trips, camping trips, and road trips), and today, I am sharing my list of packing essentials... just in time for holiday travel.


Pack a good carry on bag - You'll want to include healthy snacks, little treats, small toys/games, movies, special blankets/stuffies, water bottles, iPods/iPads, etc... If you are flying, you will want to pack a pen for customs forms/baggage tags and some gum/suckers for the kids (to help with their ears when the plane is landing). A change of clothes and bathing suits are helpful too... in case luggage gets lost or delayed.


Pack food - I detest being forced to buy overpriced and junky food when on a road trip, spending time in an airport, or staying in a hotel room. I always bring supplies (that don't need to be refrigerated) that I can use to prepare a simple picnic lunch. I like unsweetened applesauce, bananas, bread, and peanut butter. It's not fancy... but it's economical, tasty, and keeps my boys happy and full. Individual snack packs (using dollar store hardware holders) are fun and useful too.



Pack basic medical supplies - I always pack Gravol, Benadryl, Tylenol, bandaids, a thermometer, ear drops, etc... There is nothing worse than being in a strange city (with a sick child) searching for an all night pharmacy. A plastic bin from the dollar store makes a wonderful, portable, and full stocked first aid kit too!



Pack storage bags - I use bags to: keep organized, identify special outfits, isolate dirty items, and hold wet stuff.

Pack entertainment for everyone - Netflix* now offers downloads, so you don't always need wifi to keep the kids entertained when you are travelling. When you are on-the-go, you can now keep everyone entertained... one download at a time.





Did I miss anything on my list? What is #1 on YOUR holiday packing list?


Gina
(aka East Coast Mommy)


*Disclosure: I receive special gifts and perks as part of my affiliation with Netflix... however (as always) the opinions on this blog are 100% my own... and I REALLY do love Netflix!