Monday, December 2, 2013

Upcycling Is Loving the Earth - Free Printable

Enjoy a free Uppity Owl printable! All you have to do is Click, Print & Color.

Here's an example of what the coloring page looks like. I used RoseArt colored pencils, RoseArt ink pens and RoseArt Gel Crayons.



"I had so much fun coloring it in!"

Here's the coloring page download: Upcycling is loving the earth!



 
"RoseArt art supplies I used to color Upcycling is Loving the Earth."


Have Fun!

Whoot Whoot!
~OvO~


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Origami Owl

The Holidays are upon us and what better way to get into the spirit than attending the annual Holiday Bazaar & Luncheon at First Assembly of God in Bakersfield, CA. I wasted no time (getting up at 5 a.m) hitting the highway for a 3 hour drive to savor homemade jellies, Ooo and Ahhh handmade quilts, dazzle the limbs with eye catching "bling" and feast upon a holiday luncheon served by all the husbands. Sheer fun!

 

There were 36 wonderful vendors with all the adorable gift ideas one could ever wish for. I truly enjoyed connecting with all the different vendors and seeing the excitement in their eyes as they shared about their "labors of love" on display. Many displays caught my fancy. However,  there was one display in particular I just fell in love with. What caught my eye you say? Owls of course!


It's no wonder this whooty display attracted me like a magnet. There were adorable owl vases on display only to become a distraction when my eyes made it to the jewelry on display. That's when I met Traci. Traci Bramlett, and her faithful assistant (Mom♡) run a business called Origami Owl Jewelry. They sell elegant lockets, chains, charms, dangles and plates. Traci and Mom were so helpful and warm they made me feel right at home.   


Traci walked me through all of the components that make up Origami Owl. Starting with picking out a locket with 3 different sizes to choose from. There were different metals as well as a dazzling black locket complete with a ring of bling! My favorite is the simple silver locket with no bling, I think it makes the charms pop more.
 


I'm sure I'm not speaking solely for myself when I say, my favorite part of putting together a locket is sorting through all of the charms. There are so many combination possibilities it will make your head spin. It's like that walk in closet you've always dreamed of. The combination possibilities are endless. I love the idea of changing out your charms to match your outfits. A versatile jewelry piece...I'm sold!
 

This piece reflects my tastes perfectly. Silver, elegant, not too much bling, not too big and not too heavy. I know what I'm getting for Christmas!
 

To create a locket that reflects your personality, love,
 hobbies, accomplishments, you name it, contact:

Independent Designer 
Traci Bramlett
Origami Owl
661-496-5707
tracisowls@gmail.com


To Ooo and Ahh the entire line of Origami Owl Jewelry or to place an order, visit:

  


What's your life locket going to look like?

Whoo Whoo!
~OvO~  

Sunday, November 3, 2013

November to Remember

We're putting the flip flops away and getting ready for our first winter in Oakhurst, CA! Last year we moved up here in February 2013, at the tail end of the winter season and it was amazing! Since we're from Bakersfield, CA (born and raised) snow is always magical! This year, we'll get the full winter wonderland experience and we're counting down the days. Funny thing though, this California girl isn't sure she's ready. I've been so busy enjoying the fall season I haven't done any winter shopping. Hmmm...what do I need?

Stylin Snowboots
Sassy Snow Jacket
Cute Ear Muffins
Snuggly Mittens
Cozy Scarf
Fluffy Beanie
and...it all has to match.

I've got my work cut out for me! Shopping takes planning, hunting, calculating and stamina...even if I order it online lol. Whichever way I obtain our winter goods, It'll all be worth it when we're catching snowflakes, bringing snow angels to life and making November memories to last a lifetime. Now, all I need is snow. 

Wishing Everyone a November to Remember! 

Whoo Whoo!
~OvO~

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Whooty Halloween Everyone!

Fall is definitely a favorite season of mine. There's just something about watching the leaves turn colors that makes this heart warm and fuzzy! 
As we have been enjoying all of Octobers fall festivities, we almost forgot to read our "spooky" books from the home library! So, last night, Hallows Eve...oooooOOOOOoooo, the family snuggled up together for some Critter BOOS, TRICKS or TREATS and some pale green pants with NOBODY INSIDE THEM glow-in-the-dark Fun!
HAPPY HALLOWEEN EVERYONE!
Whoo Whoo!
~OvO~

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Uppity Owls Green Book Exchange

My 4 year old and I visit the library every week to get our weekly fill of books, educational computer games, imaginative play, story time, crafting, musical play and social interaction. Lately, we've been checking out between 15 - 20 children's books, reading them in a week and then going back for more. Our relationship with public libraries has been growing since he was 2 years old and we just can't get enough. 

One of the reasons I'm so in love with the library is because it's free. Awesome right! When I think of how much it would cost me to get those 15 - 20 new books from the bookstore it makes me cringe. A good quality hardback book costs about $16 these days. I'll let you do the math. :) Once your finished with the books, then what? What about all of the books already in your possession that your kids have outgrown or just don't show an interest in? What about all those lonely books who just want to be read again? ... please, read on. ;)
I'm always looking for ways to be more green, and being such an avid lover of childrens books, I've decided to start a green book exchange. (I'm getting goosebumps just thinking about it!) There are SO many books that end up in landfills, get stored in forgotten boxes, clutter, and simply just get forgotten. Wouldn't it be great to salvage those lonely books into an exchange where they are constantly being read? (No library card needed.) That's just what I've decided to do. ♥♥
I wanted to design the exchange in such a manner that the books are continually in motion and that the exchange is continually growing. This way (hopefully) the books will never be "forgotten" again. I also wanted to make the exchange super easy to participate in. All anyone will have to commit to is the promise to pass the Uppity Owl Book Box to another young reader who would love to read them...

Break Down
A. Receive Uppity Owl Book Box
B. Read Books
C. Pass Along
(Keep book box  no longer than 30 days.)

Easy, right! If a young reader finds a book they just can't let go of, there will be a sticker with the price in the upper right hand corner of the book. PayPal payments can be sent to: uppityowlupcycles@gmail.com

The price will never be more than 50% of the book or more than $5. This will help me offset some of my expenses. ;) Otherwise, read them all for free and pass them all along for Free!

I haven't begun to mention all of the green aspects of this project.
* Reusing Books
* Saving them from Landfills
* Reducing Spending
* Recycling fond childhood stories and memories.

Gently used books, new childhood memories!
 
Whoo Whoo!
~OvO~

Bento Is A Go!

I've discovered another arena to be creative in...Bento! If I didn't have a 4 year old I probably wouldn't think twice about getting so creative with food. However, with Bento playing with your food is strongly encouraged! There are so many reasons to get into Bento.  The getting to be creative aspect is a no brainer for me so, what really sold me is the opportunity to spark a deep appreciation of food in my son by making it more fun.
Getting started with Bento can be a little overwhelming at first. There are so many different things you can create with food, themes you can implement and tools/adornments you can use.  If your like me, you'll do a web search on Bento and then become a little intimidated by the extravagance that some super moms accomplished. I'm all for the creative but, I don't want to be up until midnight putting my preschoolers lunch together. 

This is what I did to break into this creative world with ease.
1. I decided to change his lunchbox "styles" with the month. For instance: Jan=Snow/Blue, Sep=Apples/Red, Aug=Sharks/Blue/Brown

2. Spaced out Lunchbox according to food groups & portions. Fruits/Veggies/Protein=Lg. Space, Crackers/Snacks/Goodies=Sm. Space.

3. Made space for napkin & silverware.
Here's an October Bento lunch I made for my preschooler.

* Pumpkin shaped turkey n cheese sandwich
* Gluten free apricot cookie
* Sliced grapes
* Black Olives
* 1 gluten free graham cracker
* 1/4 chunk of Enjoy Life chocolate bar
* Multi-colored marshmallows
* Box of organic raisins
* BBQ POPS chips
* Coconut water

(Um, Yum!)

Did I mention my 4 year old has food allergies? Bento has been a great way to present my son with fun food options without him feeling left out. It's hard for me to see other kids eating foods he can't (like goldfish) or telling him no we can't buy it because it's ouchy (like goldfish). Bento has allowed me to help distract him from what everyone else is eating because he just can't take his eyes off of what's right in front of him. Bento!

Happy Eats Everyone! 

Whoo Whoo!
~OvO~

Friday, May 3, 2013

Quick Grab vs. Snail Dry

 

It never fails, you step into a store to get your shopping done and all of the sudden...you gotta go.  Making a bathroom pit-stop can be an inconvenience when you're in a hurry.  And, if you're like me, you want to get in and out without touching anything as quickly as possible.  (the smell alone is all it takes to put me into overdrive!)

Being green minded, one has to think about the last step of the entire process.  I'm talking about drying your hands.  I have on many accounts witnessed people passing up the dryer for a quick paper towel grab.  (guilty) The Quick Grab is all part of the rushing to get out of there asap process.  I see people using the Snail Dry as well.  Question is...which is greener?








Paper towels use trees and creates trash, blow dry uses energy and when the machine breaks...let's just say it doesn't exactly get broken down and recycled.  However, I have to go with the Snail Dry.  While air drying your hands takes longer it still has the potential to save a lot of trees.  If we can create products that can be broken down and recycled completely...then the Snail Dry wins hands down!  Even though the paper towel probably utilized some percentage of recycled paper and even though it can quickly break down in the environment (so long as it's not toxic to the environment) I'd call the fight for the Quick Grab...but, not so fast.  There's just one problem with the Quick Grab...take a long look at the photo above...do you see it?  It's the plastic bag the paper towels go into.  How long is that going to take to break down?  Is there any toxic chemicals in that plastic bag?  How many of those plastic bags get filled per day/week/month/year/store...Snail Dry wins by a breeze!



I often use the Snail Dry over the Quick GrabIt's an extra bonus that the 4 year old loves all of the wind it creates!  I'd love to hear how you feel on the subject.  Suggestions, questions, comments and of course compliments...send em my way. ~OvO~


Quick Grab vs. Snail Dry...the next time you gotta go...who's going to win?







Have a Hootie Weekend!
Whoo Whoo
~OvO~

Monday, April 22, 2013

10 Gifts To Our Beautiful Earth

It's Earth Day, one of my most favorite holidays of the year.  Earth Day is all about showing our big blue planet some love and respect.  Won't you celebrate this special day by giving our beautiful earth a gift?  Here are some great gift ideas I think Earth would love...

1. Start a Green Club: Let's face it, going green isn't easy. I can't think of a better way to start loving our planet more than starting a support group to help encourage one another, share ideas, and become more educated with green issues. One great way to get involved is by visiting Meetup and finding a green group you can join. Or, better yet, start your own.  You don't need to join a website to spread the word.  (Meetup does have a fee to create a meeting group. There is usually no fee to join a group that is already established. However, a group organizer might choose to charge a small monthly fee ($5-$10) to help them cover their costs. That's not always the case though.)

2. Use Less Water: Of all the gifts I can think of, this one might be the most challenging. Who doesn't enjoy a big tub of hot bubbly water to sink into? Last summer, I took a few showers outside (with my bathing suit on thank you very much) and saved a ton of water! Not to mention the scenery was much better than my bathroom walls. One way to conserve while you bath is to fill up a 5 gallon milk carton with water and use it to get wet, lather while wet then use the rest to rinse the lather off. Fun, simple and safe.
 
3. Cloth Napkins: I love that we don't use paper towels or paper napkins anymore.  It feels good giving my boys a cotton cloth napkin to wipe their faces with. I know that they are not going into the trash when we're done with them and I love that there's just something a bit more classy about cloth napkins. I have a bin under the sink I put our used napkins in. Once it's full, I wash them, fold them and reuse them.
 
4. Composting: It's a great way to have a readily supply of "black gold" soil on hand. Check out this site for some great composting ideas. 

5. Home Recycling System: It doesn't have to be complicated or expensive. And, if you're like me, it can't be an eye sore! In order to keep these eye sores out of site...I have found putting them in the garage, on the side of the house or next to the trash cans help make these bins easier to  look at. You can probably find a service in your city (for a small fee) that will provide you with an extra trash can (usually a different color) for your recyclables.




 
 6. Community Garden: This is something I've been wanting to do for a while. How heart warming is it when a community can come together and share their love for food and life?! Starting a community garden is a huge undertaking. You have to find people who are willing to donate time, supplies and even money. But, I think people are more willing to do so than you would think. There are a ton of community garden websites available to start doing some research and get some great ideas. In the meanwhile, start looking for a plot of land that needs development and take it from there. Oh, and while you're planning...don't forget to plan a small play area with couple of picnic tables. What good is a garden if you can't enjoy the fruits of your labor? ;0)
 
7. Urban farming: I'm chomping at the bit to get this one underway. Since we moved from a house to an apartment temporarily, I'm feeling the restrains of not being able to get my little home farm started. I saw a baby goat the other day at church (yes, I live in the mountains with some fine mountain folk now ;0) and I couldn't help but want one. Not just because it was so adorable, but just think of all the possibilities. Making your own goats cheese, fresh goats milk, knowing exactly what it's being fed, knowing exactly what medications it isn't receiving, saving money...oh baby. It's just exciting!
 
8. Disposable Utensils: I know, it's so much easier to just use it and throw it away. That's why they sell so well. But, there is a better way and it takes just a tiny bit more effort. Promise. ;0) You can purchase a set of these adorable, Sistema portable, BPA free utensils to use at your next outdoor function. They even come in a case you can pack them back into, take them back home and reuse them again later. I know, it's more dishes, but...The Earth will love you for it!


 


9. Self-sufficient: It's a term becoming more and more popular these days! Being less of a consumer and living more within our means is a great way to eliminate trash created by buying things we don't need. Try going solar, starting a garden, raising honey bees or buying a few egg laying chickens to keep in your back yard. (Check with your state to see what is allowed. Some states have a maximum # of chickens you can keep. And, of course keep your neighbors in mind...you don't want a swarm of bees attacking their daughters birthday party guests. ;0)
 
10. UPCYCLE: Keep would-be trash out of the landfills by turning something old and useless into something new and exciting! Uppity's favorite!


This is a photo of Yosemite National Park I took last month. It's incredibly majestic. I couldn't imagine such a beautiful place being overtaken by smog and trash. Won't you give our beautiful earth a gift this year and change something in your life in order to live greener? One step at a time you can make a change...It'll be worth it.

Happy Earth Day!
Whoo Whoo!
~OvO~

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Upcycle Craft - Owl Bag


 

Don't you just love looking at creative crafts that inspire?  It's one of the reasons I love Pinterest so much. It's a great place to get and share great ideas. This upcycle craft was inspired as such and I'm really excited to share it with you!
This Upcycled "Owl Bag" was constructed from a used cereal box upcycled with duct tape. It's a great way to "wrap" a gift for a friend, use to tote Hot Wheels around (as my preschooler does) or set on display with your latest owl loving decor. Whatever you do, you'll have a hoot of a time!

Materials:
  • Used Cereal Box
  • Duct Tape (3 different colors, 1 of them a shimmering color)
  • Wax Paper
  • Sissors
  • Ruler 
  • Owl Print of Choice to Trace
  • Pretty Rhinestones that match/stick or whatever else you'd like to use. ;0)


Step 1: Wrap

Tape the top flaps down to the inside of the cereal box. 




Then wrap the box with duct tape from the top to the bottom. Alternate your 2 different colors. Don't use your shimmering duct tape yet.





When you reach the bottom, and if you have any hang over, cut the sides then press them flat onto the bottom of the box.















Wrap the sides of the box from side, to the bottom, up the other side covering entirely. This will give a finished look on the sides.



Wrap the top of the box with the shimmering color.




Cut corners, fold down.

 
Now that the wrapping is done, it's time to start adding the details.



Step 2: Adding the Top Edging
 


 


 





 





 

Step 3: Make Handles
Measure two strips of tape, two different colors with one of them being the shimmering color.  Tape them together (sticky side to sticky side) and twist.











Tape handles to the inside of the box.  Then add a long strip of tape to the inside for an extra layer of support.




Step 4: Make Owl 
Trace an owl of your choosing onto a piece of paper. Place wax paper over the drawing and trace the drawing with a sharpie.



Cover drawing with shimmering duct tape. Do Not press the duct tape down at all. You want the tape to come off easily when you peel it off of the wax paper.




Flip over and cut along lines.



 Peel off wax paper.



 Tape onto the box. Press tape down firmly.




Step 4: Decorate!

I even decided to use the left over shimmering duct tape and wax paper to make some additional stick on decor.


I also added some matching stick on rhinestones.



Have a Great Weekend!
Whoo Whoo!
~OvO~