Monday, November 22, 2010

Thanksgiving Family Craft Project

It's Time Capsule

OK, so you're looking for a fun project for the entire family. Here's the perfect craft project that involves EVERYONE!!!
Time travels so fast – capture a bit of the moment with things from today.

What You’ll Need

  • Capsule - Plastic Container with a Tight Fitting Lid if You’re Going to Bury it in the Dirt or Tin, Plastic, Wood or Cardboard if You’re Not
  • Glue That’s Waterproof if You’re Going to Bury Your Capsule
  • Zip Top Plastic Bags

Ideas for Things to Put in Your Time Capsule

Photo, drawing, comic strip, event ticket, today’s newspaper, toy, coin from the current year, predictions, photo of your family or friends, something that represents YOU! Be sure to include the date the capsule was buried. Have everyone contribute something.

How To Make It!

  1. Place your items in zip top bags before placing in capsule.
  2. If you aren’t going to bury your container, decorate the outside with permanent markers or by gluing things on.

Place your capsule in a warm, dry place or if burying, seal with waterproof glue and let dry. Dig a hole, place the capsule in the hole and let each person take a turn placing dirt over the container. Decide when you’ll open your capsule, maybe next Thanksgiving!!!

More fun family and kids' craft projects are available at and in the book Make Healthy Fun! available at

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Shrink Plastic Leaf Napkin Rings

Copper-Look Leaf Napkin Rings

With one of these napkin rings at each place setting, your table will assume an air of classic elegance. You can use a real leaf for your pattern too! Shrink Plastic shrinks 60% of the original size and to the thickness of a nickel.

What You Need

Shrink Plastic or check your recycle bin for plastic containers with the #6 on the bottoms

Baby powder

Baking sheet


Acrylic paints: verdigris, copper

E6000® Craft Glue

Artistic Wire 10 gauge copper wire

Permanent pen, black, fine line

Sea sponge (small scrap)



Wire cutter

2” diameter bottle to shape napkin rings

Round nose pliers

What To Do

  1. Place Shrink Plastic over pattern. Trace with permanent marker. Cut out. Pre-heat oven to 275 - 300 degrees. Lightly sprinkle baking sheet with baby powder. Place Shrink Plastic on baking sheet. Place in oven until shrunk and leaf lays flat. Shrink desired number of leaves. While leaves are still warm, bend edges upward. Let cool.
  2. Sponge copper paint on front, sides and back of leaves. Let dry.
  3. Sponge verdigris over leaves, allowing a small amount of copper to show through. Let dry.
  4. For each napkin ring, cut a 12” length from wire, using wire cutter. Wrap center of wire length around 2” diameter bottle, leaving ends straight. Remove from bottle. Grasp end of wire, using pliers, twist, forming a large loop, referring to photo. Repeat at other end of wire.
  5. Glue leaf at center of napkin ring.
Other Shrink Plastic ideas can be found in The Guide to Shrink Plastic book

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Shrink Plastic Frames

Here's a great gift idea - and you just might have the main 'ingredient' in your recycle bin right now! Shrink Plastic is so much fun to work with - it shrinks 60% and to the thickness of a nickel!

What You'll Need

Baking sheet
Baby powder
Oven or toaster oven
Hot pad
Shrink plastic or #6 plastic (check bottoms of plastic containers in your recycle bin)
Wood frame
3D paint
Aleene’s® Original Tacky Glue™
Tape for checkerboard
Acrylic paint to paint frame
Foam paintbrush
Masking tape for checkerboard frame

*Aleene’s® Shrink-It™ is available through

What To Do

1. Paint frame desired color. If you want the checkerboard look, use tape to divide off sections before you paint.

2. Cut various sizes and shapes from shrink plastic.

3. Pre-heat oven to 275-300 degrees. Lightly sprinkle baking sheet with baby powder. Place shrink plastic pieces on baking sheet. Place in oven for a few minutes until they flatten. Remove from oven and let cool.

4. Use permanent markers to color shapes.

5. Glue and layer plastic pieces to frame.

6. Add squiggles, dots and personalize with 3D paint. Let dry.

Make It Yours!
Paint frame in the person's favorite color (school colors make a great checkerboard frame!), add shrink plastic pieces that fit the person - megaphones and mascots for a cheerleader, airplanes for the plane enthusiast - check out rubber stamps too! The checkerboard is perfect for a checkers enthusiast by adding shrink plastic checkers and how about for the NASCAR or racing person? Make cars from shrink plastic to race around the frame.

Let them make their own custom picture mat - Include the mat, some decorative scrapbook paper and a can of Aleene's® Crystal Clear Tacky Spray™.

Use the same idea on a wooden or paper mache box to store treasures.

Wrap It Up!
Add a bow and actually place it on the wall. It's a decorative touch to the room and a gift all in one!

The Guide to Shrink Plastic ebook is available at

Friday, November 05, 2010

Get Those Old Records Off the Shelf

We all have them...a pile of old records and no record player or the records are so scratched that they won't play. Here's a fun project to preserve the album covers - make a tray for that special person (you included!) and it will be music to their ears...My buddy, Cheryl Ball, from the old Aleene's Creative Living television show days and I put together tons of ideas to repurpose the old records in our ebook - you can check them out at

Servin-up Rock ‘n Roll

Designs by Joan Martin Fee


  • 1 Record Album Cover
  • Frame with glass to fit album
  • 2 Drawer pulls
  • Screwdriver
  • Drill
  • Scissors


  1. Cut album to fit frame. Tip: Cut and paste to fit frame or buy a mat to fill in open space.
  2. Drill pilot holes for handle screws on ends of frame.
  3. Attach handles. Replace glass.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Gift Ideas

Are you looking for a special family gift idea? How about taking all of your family's favorite recipes and creating a one-of-a-kind cookbook? It's super simple and oooooh, so special!!!

Cook-It-Up Family Style Cookbook

What You'll Need
  • Notebook with Clear Front Pocket
  • Family Photo
  • Background - Print Graphics on Computer or Use Construction Paper and Stickers or Have a Member of Your Family Draw a Picture
  • Stick Glue
  • Scissors
  • Computer with Printer
How to Make It!

1. Print family photo, title of cookbook and background page.
2. Cut cookbook title and family photo desired size and shape. Glue to background paper with stick glue.
3. Slip in front pocket of notebook.

Copy or type-up your favorite recipes and decorate these pages too!

For more fun family and kids' crafts check out The Make Healthy Fun! book with over 120 craft projects and recipes is available at

Monday, November 01, 2010

Magic of Christmas

Aleene's Magic of Christmas Book

I received a request last week from a reader wanting to locate the Aleene's The Magic of Christmas book from 1998. Well, I dug around a little in my craft room and found three copies. Looking through the 120 pages brought back amazing memories (I was the Editor on the project) of stunning ornaments, centerpieces, stocking ideas and tons more terrific holiday ideas. Anyone else looking for a copy??? There are only two left! Send me an email for details at