Sunday, December 16, 2007

Couch Recover Finished

We purchased a long thin drop cloth to cover the cushions, thereby finishing off our couch makeover. We laid the drop cloth underneath,

placed the cushions on top, folded over and tucked in the excess. It fit very well. I have two throw pillows which match the original couch. I'd like to cover them with a heavy vintage 1970's green table cloth. That earthy green rough cotton will look great with this couch. That's a project for another week.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Free Printable Children's Short Story: The Little Fir Tree by Hans Christian Anderson

Entire text on one page here. I like this because it's much easier to right click, "select all" and paste it into a word processor for editing out non-story elements(site headings, etc.) before printing.

At Google Books:
Pages 102-111 of The Pink Fairy Book here at Google Books. Three printing options at the site: right click and save each page, revert to plain test(top sidebar) and then copy and paste, or download the entire book.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Homemade Shell Christmas Ornaments

We live near the beach and I like to gather shells as we walk along the beach. I have jars and jars of them, so for the last few years we've been making shell ornaments. This is an easy children's craft.

Shells(found or store bought)
Clear spray
Paint(any) and small paint brush
Drill with thin bit
Ornament hanger or ribbon

We try to select shells which have natural holes so we don't need to use a drill. The large oyster shells rarely have natural holes, so we use a very thin bit and drill a hole through the top. Then it's just a matter of watering down some glue, painting the shell with it, and rolling it in glitter. Sometimes we also use some children's paint in the glue to add a little highlight to the glitter. To finish it off, spray with a clear spray paint, let it dry and thread some string or a hanger through the hole.

These shells really look glittery on the tree with the lights. We plan to add long pieces of coral next year, like icicles. I also see a lot of sea glass, but I've not tried to drill a hole through it yet - too afraid of broken glass.

See more craft ideas at:

Also visit Works-For-Me-Wednesday Carnie.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Frugal Couch Makeover: Easy Slip Cover

One of our couches is at least twelve years old. It is a Klausner which is good quality, so it's held up well. The couch is now in the children's den, and the cat likes to scratch it. Our slip cover was ten years old, and had to go. The elastic was shot and the fabric thin and stained. It never quite fit the couch even though it was the largest size that I could find. The cat managed to take advantage of this and scratch the heck out of the back and sides.

We solved the problem this week by staple-gunning a huge drop cloth over it. We did not cover the seat cushions. My husband stapled the front first by turning the couch up on it's back. He stapled under about five inches of fabric to the wood frame, and then brought it up and over the back. We folded fabric artistically around the arms and stapled the sides and back into the wood frame. The staples on the sides are hidden under folds of fabric.

We'll purchase a smaller drop cloth to cover the two big seat cushions. I'll be tucking these under for easy removal and washing.

It looks like duck cloth, and it stays in place. We tested the couch cover by having the children jump all over it, and it's staying in place. The drop cloth cost under $25.00. It's strong and durable fabric which should wear well. I also think the cat will be less likely to scratch it. He never scratched the slip cover, but he loves nubby couch fabric.

Note: We don't have big stains on the carpet. Not sure why but the camera made it look as if we have black mold in the corner.

See more ideas at Make It From Scratch #42

Update: Finished couch here.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

More Free Printable Vintage Christmas E-Texts

Christmas Potpourri: Holiday Etexts:

"Join the Cratchits and Ebenezer Scrooge in Victorian London, or the March family in Civil War-era New England. Share in the celebrations of the Peppers or the Peterkins, the Bobbseys or the Birds. Take another look at Francis Pharcellus Church's stirring defense of Santa Claus's existence, then enjoy L. Frank Baum's biography of Santa and Clement Clarke Moore's classic poem about Santa's nocturnal visit.

Try to solve a Christmas-themed Sherlock Holmes mystery, or shed a tear or two over Hans Christian Andersen's pathos-filled tale of the poor little match girl. Read about Christmas with the Pilgrims, or with the Teddy Roosevelts in White House."

Note: Some of the links to Black Mask are not working because Black Mask has been resurrected as Munseys.

Also check here and here.

Feel free to visit my other blog for free texts as well: Happy Hearts Free Homeschooling Library.

Free Printable Children's Christmas Stories from Vintage Texts

Click on title.

About Me

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I'm a homeschooling mom of two, a teen and a little. I hope this collection of mine helps you as much as it has helped us. I have an Etsy shop here: And a blog: