diy_wooden_alphabet_blocks

diy_wooden_alphabet_blocks2

Alphabet blocks are a great way to introduce letters and develop motor skills for babies and toddlers. My daughter used to stack the blocks when she was a baby, but now that she is a toddler – she loves shouting out the letters.

When my daughter was born, wooden alphabet blocks set was on top of my daughter’s toys list. While I found many bold color/font alphabet blocks, it was hard to find something aesthetically pleasing without being too expensive. I remember taking my daughter to Book Culture and Bank Street Books on the Upper West Side, and just drooling over the beautiful toys. When I found the Uncle Goose Nursery Rhyme Wooden Blocks, I fell in love and bought them right away. I must say the toys can be a bit expensive, but both book stores have the best selection of books and toys.

Although I dream of having the entire Uncle Goose Wooden Blocks Sets, I decided to make them myself this time. It was a half-day project and I had my daughter help me out painting the blocks. I suggest to always sand the blocks and paint them with a primer first, it will be much easier when you paint the letters and illustrations. I found the unfinished wooden blocks on Amazon, but I believe you can find them at Etsy or Michaels too.

Happy August and craft away!

Materials Used
Wooden Blocks
Sand Paper
Primer
Acrylic Paint
Painter’s Tape

Unicorn Tote Bag

Hand Painted Unicorn Tote Bag

Hand Painted Unicorn Tote Bag

As most girls do, my daughter loves unicorns. She reminds me everyday that a unicorn is special and magical – so unicorns are always magically flying around in my head. I had this project in mind for awhile and wanted to create just the right tote bag for her. I’ve seen unicorn tote bags in the past, but I wanted a subtle unicorn pattern that wasn’t too flamboyant. The unicorns are hand painted with acrylic paint and metallic paint. I waited 24 hours for it to dry, and first turned the tote bag inside out and then ironed the fabric on low setting.

To add some fun, I made a unicorn keychain made with perler beads. Playing around with perler beads on the pegboards are really fun, but this time I used this app, Perler, to create my unicorn. It lets me create a better pattern and I loved the outcome of the project. If you plan to create something with perler beads, it is definitely worth a try!

Materials Used
Unicorn Tote Bag –
Acrylic Paint
Metallic Paint
Plain Tote Bag
Iron

Unicorn Keychain –
Perler Beads
Pegboard
Keychain
Perler App

Beaded Hair Comb

diy beaded hair comb

diy beaded hair comb

The other day, I was cleaning out my closet and found some beautiful beads that I bought from La droguerie and a flea market in Paris several years ago. This adorable shop carries beads, buttons, ribbons and everything that a crafter would want. The beads are very well crafted and they are very hard to come by here.

During the Paris trip, I remember just wandering the streets and taking pictures of apartment doors and graffiti with a very confused husband. The beads remind me of the elegant color palettes and brings back great memories of my trip to Paris. It was definitely one of the best trips I ever had – which I hope to do with my daughter some day.

After reminiscing and sharing my Paris trip memories with my daughter, we decided to spend some time making jewelry together. She insisted on making a hair comb and bracelet, so we used beads, hair combs, copper wires, elastic cords and some E6000 glue to reinforce and strengthen the knots. My daughter enjoyed choosing the beads and is very excited to wear it to preschool tomorrow!

Materials Used
Beads
Hair Combs
Copper Wire
Elastic Cord
E6000 glue
Pliers

Wooden Chair Makeover

Hand Painted Modern Flower Kids Chair Makeover

Hand Painted Modern Flower Kids Chair Makeover

I hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of July! We spent our weekend relaxing at home with friends and I was finally able to work on a project I had in mind for awhile – wooden chair makeover.

We found this ikea chair at a garage sale a while ago. It was a plain white wooden chair that wasn’t in perfect condition, but the scratches and dings definitely gave it character. Although I had no plans to do a chair makeover when I bought the chair, I have been in the painting mood ever since my mom visited us from Japan.

My mom is an expert at tole painting, a folk art and decorative painting, and she taught me how to paint on various surfaces using unique brush techniques. She gave me and my daughter a painting lecture, which was a whole lot of fun. While I always and love to paint by freehand, it was interesting to learn that tole painting uses patterns and unique techniques. I will definitely be incorporating some tole painting techniques in my future work.

Crafting and painting is always a wonderful way to bond. I would love to hear how you bond with your family and friends!

Materials Used
Primer
Acrylic Paint
Satin Finish

chair makeover

Father's Day Printable

Father's Day Printable

Father’s Day is just around the corner! I created a free stationary set for Father’s Day – includes a Card, Note Card, and Gift Tag. I hope this stationary set will add a little something to your gift.

Supplies

Cardstock Paper
Baker’s Twine
Scissors
Bone Folder
Hole Punch

Instructions

1. Download stationary set.

2. Print template on cardstock paper or on a paper of your choice.

3. Cut along the gray lines with scissors.

4. Fold card, note card, and gift tag with a bone folder.

5. Punch the gift card with a small round hole within the black circle.

6. Tie a baker’s twine to the gift tag and attach to gift!

Enjoy!

clickheretodownload

 

All downloads are for personal, non-commercial use only. Please do not redistribute and/or modify any of the downloads. Please link to this post if sharing, and not directly to the pdf file. Thank you. © Asami Hasegawa
Summer Fruit Salad

Fruit-Salad
On hot summer days, I usually lose my appetite and go straight for an ice cream or fruit bar. But now that my toddler is old enough to understand the wonderful vocabulary “ice-cream”, I have to opt to a more healthier solution. This fruit salad is definitely healthy and enticing even for my toddler!

Summer Fruit Salad
PREP TIME 10 MIN      COOK TIME 1 MIN      TOTAL 11 MIN

Ingredients

1 cup of Strawberries, sliced
½ cup of Blueberries
½ Apple, diced
2 Kiwis
1 Orange
½ Cantaloupe, diced
Teaspoon of Lemonade

Instructions

1. Mix together all the fruits in a large bowl

2. Add a teaspoon of Lemonade and toss gently

Mizuyokan – Red Bean Jelly

Mizu-Yokan-Red-Bean-Jelly

Unlike breezy Bay Area, summer in New York City was hot and humid – filled with hot air and musty smell. On certain summer days, garbages are dumped and cooked on scorching hot streets releasing a perfectly sour odor. Waiting for the 1 train at 96th Street Subway station was like sauna bathing and the air-conditioned subway cars felt like heaven. After a long and steamy afternoon walk in Soho, Coffee Milk Tea Boba in China Town seemed just right.

Then I remembered the ferociously long hot and humid summer in Japan. The traditional sound of wind chimes, fuurin, are everywhere in summer and incredibly soothing. Despite the hot summer, Japanese enjoy summer with various cold summer treats – shaved ice, yokan, fruit jellies, green tea frozen yogurt, and many more. One of my favorites treats are Yokans – Red Bean Jelly. If you are in the Bay Area, you can find them at local Japanese Supermarkets like Mitsuwa, Nijiya, or Marukai. I personally find them too sweet for my little one, so I usually whip up this treat with less sugar and add honey.

Mizu-Yokan-Red-Bean-Jelly

MIZUYOKAN (RED BEAN JELLY)
PREP TIME 5 MIN      COOK TIME 5 MIN      TOTAL 30MIN

Ingredients

200 grams of Sweet Red Bean Paste
2 grams of Kanten (Agar)
1 teaspoon of Honey
1 cup of Water
Pinch of Salt

Instructions

1. Combine 1 cup of water and add 2 grams of powdered kanten in a small saucepan and bring to a boil.

2. Lower heat and dissolve powdered kanten with a wooden spoon for 2 min.

3. Add 200 grams of sweet red bean paste and dissolve the paste with wooden spoon for 3 min.

4. Add 1 teaspoon of honey and pinch of salt. Remove from heat and let it cool for 5 min.

5. Pour mixture into a pan and cool in refrigerator for 15 min.

DIY-Wooden-Circle-Magent-with-Toddlers

Although crafting with toddlers are always fun, it can be difficult to find a perfect project that will match your preschooler’s interest level. This project is quick and easy – perfect for toddlers! These wooden circle magnets make a great gift for grandparents, which are heartwarming and actually useful.

My daughter really enjoyed making these wooden circle magnets and was excited to send these out to her grandparents. I hope your toddlers will enjoy making this project too.

Supplies

Wooden Circle
Acrylic Paint
Magnet
E6000 Craft Adhesive

Directions

1. Paint the Wooden Circles with Acrylic Paint

2. Let it dry for an hour.

3. Glue the magnet to the back of the wooden circle.