Christmas, Craft Projects, Holiday

Christmas Tree craft

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I got the best Christmas present ever when my dad called me on Dec. 23 to ask if I wanted to do a Christmas craft on Christmas Eve morning before all of our festivities began. I said yes (duh) and dad went out hunting for supplies. When he was younger, his mom made Christmas trees out of mixed nuts that she decorated and hung on a wall in their home. He wanted to make one just like it for his home and for mine.

For this project we used:

  • Thin sheets of wood
  • Hot glue
  • Nuts in their shells (three or four bags)
  • Pinecones
  • Metallic spray paint
  • Small ornaments
  • Fabric
  • Batting
  • Drill
  • Jigsaw
  • Wire
  • Felt

Step 1:Ā Bake pinecones to kill any critters that may be living inside. Bake for 25 minutes at 200 degrees. That should do the trick. We gathered ours outside of our gym at 6:30 a.m. … in the dark. I’m sure we looked wayyy creepy.

Step 2: Sketch out a tree shape onto a piece of wood. We drew a triangle for the tree, a small rectangle for the stump and a trapezoid for the base.

Step 3: Cut out your tree using a jigsaw (or a hand saw if you prefer).

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Step 4: If you want to make more than one, use your cutout tree as a stencil and trace it onto the first sheet of wood.

Tree stencil

Step 5: Drill a hole in the top of the tree and string wire through to make it easy to hang later on.

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Step 6: Start gluing on your nuts and pinecones. I used a pine cone for the top of my tree. Dad used a prickly seed from a sweet gum tree as his topper.

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It is OK to have gaps in your nuts and pine cones because you’ll be filling it in with ornaments later on.

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Step 7: Spray paint the top of the tree using a metallic spray paint of your choice. Dad went with a bronze metallic.

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I chose a metallic silver for mine.

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Step 8: Once your tree is painted, it is time to create the trunk. I clipped edged of pinecones and glued them onto the trunk.

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Dad went with thin twigs. If you’d like your trunk to be the same color as your tree, do this step right after gluing on your nuts.

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Step 9: Glue your ornaments onto the tree.

Step 10: Cover the base of the tree in batting. Then, cover with fabric. Our wood wasn’t thick enough for staples, so we hot glued all of our fabric and batting directly to the wood.

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Step 11: If you see the need, which we did, glue felt to the back of your tree (small circles will do) to spots of the tree that might rub against the door or wall you will hang it on. You don’t want to scuff your walls, and small circles of felt in the corners and around the wire will help.

Step 12: You are done! Hang your tree up for the holiday season and admire.

This was definitely best part of my holiday break, which is saying a lot because I had an amazing holiday break. I loved doing such a fun and sentimental project with my dad. We have one more base for next year. Dad’s got grand plans for how to make our next trees even better.

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Thanks for the great idea, Dad šŸ™‚ Love you.

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One last thing…. happy birthday to my awesome mother-in-law, Robin!

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Garden

So much landscaping

Saturday was a day filled with dirt, dirt, dirt and more dirt. With the awesome help of my dad (he did most of the work), the hubby and I spent all day Saturday landscaping the front of our house. The weather was fantastic — not too hot, a little muggy, and it even rained to cool us off! Thank goodness it wasn’t too hot.

We started bright and early at 8 a.m. and finished mid-afternoon at 3:30 p.m. Then, I went to bed at 8 p.m. because I was too tired to do much of anything else.

It. Was. Exhausting.

But it was all worth it.

Here’s our house before the landscaping overhaul:

These are the goodies we planted:

And, on top of what we bought at Home Depot, we were able to replant the bushes from one side of the house in another location! Because of that, we took out the rose bushes and moves the spaced out bushes on the right side of the house to the left side of the house. We planted them way better than they were before — you’d never know they are the same plants!

After hours of intense manual labor, here’s how the house turned out!

So much nicer than before and so much more well thought out. The black mulch also makes a world of difference!

I love the new plants, especially my liriopeĀ and speedwell (thanks, Ann!).

Once all of the excess dirt washes away the whole front of the house will look even better…. Now, we just need some shutters :p

So pretty. It’s nice that you can actually see our house, now that the rose bushes are gone. Our bay window lets in a lot more light now and looks even bigger than before. I’m really glad we put in all of the hard work to make the front of the house look as nice as the inside.

Happy Monday!