Category Archives: home projects

The Creation Crate Mood Lamp!

Creation Crate Mood Lamp

CUE FLASHBACK!

So one day, Mom and Dad called me into their office along with Nerdpie and said, “We got sent this buildable mood lamp from Creation Crate, and were wondering if you wanted to make it.” Nerdpie was like, “Kind of, but if Nerdster wants to, he can!” Of course, to this, I said, “I would really like to make the lamp! Thanks!”

 END FLASHBACK!

And here I am, a week or two later, and I learned a lot. A couple of things I learned are:

  • I learned about circuit boards.
  • I learned about charges and how they travel.
  • I (surprisingly) learned about programming.
  • I especially learned about inputting circuits and lining them up.
  • And I learned about CHIMICHANGAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This lamp was super fun to make and incorporated a couple of cool features and skills, including:
  1. Circuit boards
  2. Programming
  3. Troubleshooting and Debugging
  4. Wire attachment
  5. Proper care of wires and LEDs (I learned this one the hard way :)C. Let’s just say, there was supposed to be three LEDs.)
All in all, this was really fun to make. I only have a couple complaints.
1)The wiring is a little confusing.
2)It didn’t come with a power source.
But other than that, the lamp was perfect. I really enjoyed learning how to implement the programming to the board, and how to program the timer for switching colors. Arduino programming is like some of the languages I like, such as JavaScript, Es6, or Python, but it also has its own sort from combining languages like JSON, CSS, or C++. It was really interesting and taught me things I hope to use later in life. Maybe I can get a job making supplies for Arduino. That would be fun. This was a super fun project which was very educational and helped me brush up on my programming skills.  Over all, this was a great experience and I can’t wait to see what will come next time. I rate this creation crate… two enthusiastic thumbs up! Comment on what you think would be something cool to make!
 
NerdMom’s 2 cents:
 
I love Creation Crate and the idea of it! This is one of the first STEM/crafting kits that I have seen that is actually for kids 10 and up.  It is something you can use as an actual curriculum. They claim that if you do 12 kits you will have more hands on programming experience than 99% of college computer science students. The cost ranges between $22.50 – $29.99 just depending on if you go month to month or a year at a time. It was a great project and my son learned a lot. This would make a wonderful gift because it is very educational and very fun!
 
(Disclosure: We were given the Creation Crate by the company and this post contains affiliate links. That said, all opinions are ours and ours alone)
 

Garden Planted!!!

I haven’t had a real garden since I was a kid but I always loved it! Yes, crazy allergic me loved real gardening. Not weeding but growing vegetables. My great granddad use to farm. It was 1 of the things my stepdad and I used to do right after he and my mom got married. So gardening holds a special spot in my heart. But I haven’t done more than a few pots in a long time! I have horrible soil (who am I kidding, you can’t call it soil). I realized just how bad when I attempted to dig into it last year and I failed to plant anything;). So after my horrible failure last year I picked up Square Foot Gardening. I love the idea of growing a year round garden in a 4 by 4 space! So this weekend I planted my garden!!! Yes, I know it is a little late in the season but we went out of town for a few days and I didn’t a brand new garden to die;).

NerdDad built a 4×4 boc for me. Then NerdPie and I went to OSH and got vermiculite, peat moss and blended compost to fill the box. Then I got corn, tomatoes, green beans, squash, peppers, basil and a few flowers to fill it up. It may not seem like a big accomplishment to all of you but… For this fat girl who never has a block of time, this is a huge accomplishment.

Hopefully I don’t kill everything and we actually get food from it;).

I Have Slayed the Linen Closet!!

I know that doesn’t seem like much of an accomplishment does it? But look at how horribly messy it is!! It was in just a fright that it took me hours spread over a few weeks. Hey, with 4 kids when do I have a few hours to dedicate to clean out 1 closet;)?

I had to sort through all the back stock of bath and beauty products. A lot hit the garbage. You know girls, the lipstick you wore twice decided you didn’t like it but thought you might like it some day? And what stayed just got organized! 1 bin for hair products, 1 bath product, so on and so forth.
Then I went through all the linen! Having had 4 babies, currently have 3 twin beds, a spare queen aero mattress and a king bed well that makes for a lot of linen. Since we are done with babies I got rid of all the baby blankets that are too small for the toddler bed, some of the many crib sheets (had something like 10) and a similar number of crib mattress pads.

I brought in some big plastic bing. One is for twin sheet sets, one is for extra twin mattress pads and blankets. Then I brought in a very big one that is in the very top of the closet. In that I put the extra king size mattress pad (that thing is huge!), blanket and flannel sheets.

Not only am I now much more organized, I can actually see what we do and don’t need! I found we need more blankets and more hand towels but we¬†definitely don’t need more twin sheets!

Ahh, now my head is a bit clearer. So have you gotten any projects done this week?

Medicine Cabinet Tackle

So I of my resolutions, both personal and bloggy, was to participate in at least half of the Tackle it Tuesdays. My house needs it desperately, but don’t judge me to harshly;). I am making myself vulnerable so don’t attack!

So I am starting with the after picture;). My Tackle this week is my medicine cabinet. I haven’t done it in quite a while. As was evidenced by the amount of stuff that was shoved in there that I am throwing away! There isn’t a before picture. That is because my husband is a saint! I had it on my todo list and so he started it without me. So instead of a before picture here is my garbage back.

That is the bag of garbage that was just sitting in the cabinet. Not only was there expired medicine but other odds and ends too! Including the pacifiers that used to be my 7 year old daughter’s. Yes, they were tucked all the way in the back of the top self. We hid them when she gave them up because we were afraid we might need them but at the same time didn’t want her to accidentally see them;).

And the bin next to the bag are things that didn’t belong in the cabinet to begin with.

So that is this week’s Tackle!

A Tea Table Set

Taken by Jane

Ok, this may seem like a weird Tackle it Tuesday post but we all have our challenges. This was my first year hosting a table for my church’s annual bou”tea”que and was a bit nervous. The hostess is responsible to bring in dishes, decorate the tables and do favors for the people who sit at our table. I was kind of intimidated because so many women come in and set not only beautiful tables but super fancy ones! But I have to say, I think my table turned out pretty cute!

I was really proud of my favors. I found these cute little plastic jars at the Dollar Tree. They look like little sugar bowls but air tight. Then I just filled them with various tea bags, dropped them into cellophane bags and closed them with silver twist ties!

So while it seems like a silly tackle it still took planning, execution and there was a lot of anxiety getting it done;).

Half My Stove Top

Scary and dirty isn’t it. I often wipe my stove top but rarely really clean it. I have talked before about my paralyzing perfectionism. If I don’t have time to do something perfectly, I have a hard time doing it. So I rarely get around to cleaning things like my stove because who has a few hours to scrub it completely down?

That is why this post is about half of my stove top getting clean. I aimed at getting it all done this morning but after scrubbing on it for over an hour, I had other things I had to get done. I thought that I would just finish this tackle in a few days and then post this next week.

But I thought about life and my kids. I don’t want them to have my problems;). You know what, I want them to get things done one bite at a time. That is the only way life is managed.

So here is my tackle, half of my stove was cleaned! But at least half of my stove is clean;). Next week, I will post the other side.

Lightening Our Chaos

So my Tackle this week will probably not seem note worthy at all to anyone but me but…

We have 4 kids and we all know how quickly they out grow their clothes. But since we have 2 boys and 2 girls, with the youngest being a girl, that means careful sorting to get rid of clothes. Could boy #2’s shorts be worn by girl #2? Then there is the processing. Can boy #1’s clothes go straight to boy #2 or should the pants stop by girl #1 first or go into holding for boy #2? And so on!

So as you can imagine, we have piles of clothes that stack up at the change of seasons. So this weekend I finished going through those piles! I moved things around and then had 2 boxes to move completely out of the house! They have been moved onto our church exchange program!

I think it is a small move to lighten out chaos! Now I have the rest of the house to clear out;). But it goes back to how you eat an elephant, one bite at a time!

And We Have Crafts! Lots and Lots!

I like every mom in the world, and especially homeschool moms, have tons of craft stuff for my kids. My kids are now of the age where I want them to have free access to the supplies. So I took my old craft drawers that had some stuff in it that I hadn’t touched in at least a couple of years and put in the kids’ stuff! ¬†
I started with these drawers full of odds and ends. Now I must confess. Almost all the supplies that were in these drawers are now in a box. They await the final judgement on their fate. Some will hit the garbage, some will be used by me (eventually) and some will be donated. Which ones are which? We will see.

And this was my final result! Normally I would have the drawers labelled but I think I need to live with it for a while. I organized the drawers in a logical way but I need to make sure that it works for the kids. I organized the general supplies by basic type: crayons and colored pencils in 1 drawer, coloring books in another, and scissor, rulers and glue in yet another. Then I have some specific drawers for each kid. It has their specific art projects they have been given. In the bottom drawers are their bulk supplies. We never need to buy another foamie shape again! I have some that don’t even fit into my drawers (there may be a giveaway in my future)! Now mind you, this is just the kids’ everyday access craft supplies. There are much more hiding in the shadows;).

So that was my Tackle. What do you think? Have you gotten any big tackles done lately?

Tackle It Tuesday: We Have Paint!

OK, I understand. Painting an office may not be a huge accomplishment for many of you, but it is grand for us. Our office has been our junk/storage room since we moved into this house. This means it has been piled high with stuff. So back at the end of October I decided to reclaim our office. Then I had major surgery, then Christmas so it totally got shelved. Just recently I decided to try again. We finally got it totally cleaned out (or really, all the junk is in the garage;) and painted. This was my first experience painting these walls with builder paint. I have never need to use primer and these walls took about 1 1/2 cans of it.

So now we are just waiting for the paint to cure for a couple of days and then we will put the outlet covers back on and move back the furniture. We need to get that part done this week so we can start organizing the paper work before I go back to Stanford (the 12th). So what do you think of our Moose Mousse?