Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Televisions are becoming more competitively priced!

This year for Christmas, think about getting that new flat screen television that you always wanted.  The prices are gradually declining and now these televisions are within the budget of just about anyone.  Amazon offers low prices and great delivery.  Check out these bargains.

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Friday, October 15, 2010

Christmas Piñatas

Here's a quick and inexpensive tutorial for making Christmas pinatas.  Make several and decorate the tree with gifts, or make a group to give as gifts to friends and acquaintances.  These look simple and easy, so you have time to make plenty.  This also looks like a fun craft to make with the kids!

This was discovered on AllCrafts.com.

Alison Pinata 01
I have been wanting to make little papier-mâché Piñatas for such a long time after seeing them on Not Martha, and Christmas seems like the perfect time to make these little balls filled with sweets or toys. They are easy to make with young ones, and fun to find fillings for. Children will enjoy pulling them apart and seeing what’s inside, and everyone will enjoy making them and seeing them hung up around fireplaces, on trees, or clustered on a door or shelf.
With a simple flour and water paste* mixed to a smooth gloopy consistency and papier-mâché strips of tissue paper around semi blown up balloons of about 10-15cm diameter.
Alison Pinata 02
Leave a gap around the top as your opening – enough to get goodies inside.
Alison Pinata 03
Leave to dry till the case is hard, and then deflate the balloon by pricking it or cutting it with scissors (it won’t pop, but will let air out slowly as it removes itself from the inside of the papier-mâché case).
Alison Pinata 04
Once you have the empty shell, you can fill with whatever you like – small bags of sweets, toys, biscuits, glitter or cut out pieces of paper, small puzzles to put together, or even write out your own jokes to tell.
Alison Pinata 04
Then take another piece of tissue paper and a length of ribbon and seal the opening with more flour/water paste.
Alison Pinata 05
Have fun decorating! Finally add a small tag to the ribbon which says ‘Pull Me’ to help open.
Alison Pinata 06
Pull open, and enjoy!
* For those with gluten or wheat allergies, the following alternatives to wheat flour can be used: Tapioca flour, rice flour. Experiment with other flours to see if they work, or alternatively use a white paste with PVA craft glue watered down, however I tried here to limit the amounts of glue being used in the whole project. You may want to add some salt to the paste to prevent mould as well.

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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Hot Christmas Toys – Toys”R”Us Announces Latest Toy Trends For Christmas 2010

If you need some help deciding what to buy your kids this year, why not take advice from the number one retailer of toys in the US?  Here is their latest trend announcement for Christmas 2010:

Toys”R”Us recently announced the latest toy trends which are expected to dominate kids’ wish lists as well as the purchasing decisions of individuals purchasing gifts during the upcoming Christmas season. These trends and lists were compiled following an extensive review of data regarding the popularity of toys, which were obtained from Toys”R”Us stores throughout the United States as well as from Toys”R”Us stores in over thirty other countries in which the company operates. Amongst the toys that were expected to be popular this season were cute collectibles, 18-inch dolls, as well as train sets, which have recently regained popularity.
Commenting at the release of these latest toy trends, Karen Dodge, who is the Senior Vice President as well as Chief Merchandising Officer of Toys”R”Us, Inc., said: “As the world’s leading global specialty toy retailer, Toys”R”Us has unique insights into the types of toys that are capturing kids’ interests. It’s no surprise that the trends we’ve identified are also reflective of some of this season’s hottest toys, such as Squinkies, Disney Princess & Me dolls and Tomica trains. Understanding what makes a toy magical to a child and will have them saying, ‘WOW,’ on Christmas morning is the first step for parents and gift-givers as they prepare for the holiday shopping season.”

Found at Star Global Tribune
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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Amazon.com: Top 10 Deals in Electronics This Week

Here are the top 10 bargains at Amazon.com:

Click here to visit the site and find other wonderful Christmas gifts, too.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Friday's Christmas Crafting -- Two ways to make Christmas Cards

Here's a video to show you a really simple card that you and your children can make to send this year:

 Here is another take on the same idea, only this time it requires a little more skill:

How to Make a Christmas Tree Pop up Card (Robert Sabuda Method)

Here are the steps:

  1. Click here to get the image and then print out the full size image on a heavy paper, like card stock or construction paper.

Print out the image on the right in a similar manner with heavy paper.
3. Lay the card that has the outline of the tree on a flat surface. Take a ruler and line the edge of it up against the center fold line of the card

4.  Use the rounded end of a paper clip (or a ball point pen that has run out of ink) and press it along the dotted line carefully scoring the card all the way from top to bottom. Score all the other dotted lines on the card as well.
5.  Cut the card out carefully following the solid, black lines around the edges.
6.  Begin to fold the card in half, keeping the outline of the tree on the outside so you can always see it.
7.  Fold the card completely in half with the outline of the tree still visible.
8. Carefully cut along the solid black line of the first segment at the top of the tree.
9. Fold the first segment at the top to the tree back against the card, along the dotted line, and crease with your thumb or finger.
10. Put the first segment back in its original position.
11. Open the card like a tent, and push the first segment through to the other side.

12. If you turn the card over, this is what it looks like.
13.  Turn the card over again and carefully cut along the solid black line of the second segment at the top of the tree
14. Fold the second segment at the top to the tree back against the card, along the dotted line, and crease with your thumb or finger.
15. Put the second segment back in its original position.
16. Open the card like a tent, and push the second segment through to the other side.

17. If you turn the card over, this is what it looks like.
18. Turn the card back over again and repeat the same process of cutting along the solid black lines, folding the segments and pushing them through to the other side.
When you have done all five segments the card will look like this.
19.  Set the Christmas tree card aside and lay the second print out, the backing card, on a flat surface. Take a ruler and line the edge of it up against the center fold line of the backing card and score down the center with your paper clip.
20. Cut the backing card out carefully following the solid, black lines around the edges.
21. Fold the backing card in half with the dotted line on the INSIDE. Set this card aside.
22. Turn over the Christmas Tree card so the dotted outline is visible. Put a thin line of glue along the right side of the card from top to bottom.
23. Put a thin line of glue along the left side of the card from top to bottom.
24.  Carefully position the backing card, with the dotted line facing down, on top of the Christmas tree card. Take your time, making sure the edges of both cards match up.

25.  Press the cards together, flattening them completely.
26. Turn the card over, carefully close and open it.
Your pop-up Christmas Tree card is ready to be decorated!
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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Electronics are getting more and more affordable in time for Christmas

If you watch television or read magazines, you can see that electronic devices are the "hot" items this year. Good for us, the prices of these devices are coming down regularly and now are well within the budget of the average person.
Everyone wants the newest telephone, the newest computer, the newest portable computer, the newest camera, the newest camcorder, etc. Well, this year for Christmas, many of these items have become priced to be on your Christmas shopping list!
Browse Amazon's Bestseller website to get an inkling of what exactly is going to be the next great "hot" item. If you do this, you may be able to pick up something really special this year before it becomes scarce.  Amazon is a great place to get in touch with what everyone is looking for and buying this year.  If you browse this site pretty regularly, you will be everyone's favorite family member this year because your gifts will be "on the money" with what they want.
Try it out and let me know what you think.  Just click here to visit the Amazon Bestsellers

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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Annual toy expo shows what's old is new again

Here is an article from the Tech Beat, that outlines some of the "hot" new toy ideas that your kids will be begging for this year. Check out the article and then see if you can get your hands on the items before it is too late!

The recent “Time to Play” event, previewing hot toys for the holiday season, featured a slew of high tech upgrades for more traditional toys.

One in particular is a $30 drawing tablet that uses light instead of crayons or markers.
"It's the Electra Doodle. Basically, it has electronic games and drawing. You can draw with light, then you can reverse it out you can animate what you've drawn with different variations of animation," Cra-Z-Art spokesperson Kevin McMenamy said.
Another device that may appeal to parents looking to reclaim their own tech toys, like iPads from their kids, is Vtech's new VReader.
It's being billed as something like a Kindle for kids.
<span style="color:#990000"><em>Tech Beat: </em></span>Annual toy expo shows what's old is new again
"It's got interactive stories, reading games and actually an on-screen definition guide where kids can press a button and get a pop-up definition for a word they don't know," Vtech’s Andrew Sroufe said. "It's also got a learning lodge navigator which is kind of like an iTunes store where kids and their parents can go on and buy stories, games and get progress reports for how they're progressing along through the curriculum."The VReader device costs about $60. Each piece of content you can download will run between $4 and $6.
For adults out there who have to go to work and feel bad about leaving their pets at home all day, "Puppy Tweets" allows you to put an electronic pendant on your dog's collar. Then, he or she will actually send you tweets [and] posts on Twitter.
"The device actually tweets you phrases that your dog is doing such as taking a nap or having a snack. There are sensors in the device that allow the product to track what exactly the dog is doing. We have over 500 phrases," Mattel spokesperson Michelle Chidoni said.
The cost of adding your canine to the growing list of people you follow on twitter is $30.

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Friday, October 1, 2010

Friday Videos

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