March 20, 2012

She's Crafty...The "I Love You Because" Frame

Welcome to my She's Crafty series...this is the first of many posts that will follow my exploits into the realm of crafting as I tap into (what has sadly become) my latent creative side. Oh yeah, I'm pretty psyched about this! I am starting off with simple projects...I don't want to sprain anything...then I'll up the ante and hope for the best. And what better motivation to kick this off than Valentine's Day! First, here's the story...

As you know, one of my New Me Resolutions is to focus on my creativity (in this case, my craftivity). Well, another Me Resolution (a "Mesolution"??) is to refocus on my relationship with my husband. Those of you with kids likely know that when you have a baby things temporarily go completely cuckoo. And it's only as things calm down, after a many months, that you can begin to put your normal life back together. For me, at least, part of that means that once the baby is sleeping thru the night I can start to refocus on my relationship with my husband (Hello again, date night, my dear old friend!).

So, here's a craft that nailed two Mesolutions with one shot: the "I Love You Because" frame. It's crafty and it was a gift for Rolland for Valentine's Day...a gift that reminds me every day to let him know I appreciate him and all the things he does for us, big and small.

I got the original idea for this from something I saw on Pinterest last year, but I made some tweaks to make it my own-- I decided a good place to hang this "love message board" was across from our door to the garage...a place we look at everyday when we come into and leave our house. This seemed like an easy place to leave messages for my husband. It also seemed like a good place to put our keys. So I modified the original idea to make it a message board and key hook.

It took a little time and planning to get all the materials together (only because I have to do that while juggling two little ones), but once I had everything it only took a few minutes to put easy (perfect for my first craft)!

Here's what you need:
- An 8x10 frame, made of wood if you plan to add hooks like I did; I found mine at Target
- Screw-in hooks, I used three (one for each of us and one for a guest), but you can do whatever number you want
- Fun background paper, I found some cool scrapbooking paper at JoAnn's and bought a few so I can change it up from time-to-time
- Dry erase marker(s)
- Some kind of velcro to keep the marker attached to the frame, I used Command damage-free hanging frame stabilizer strips (cheap and worked like a charm)
- A drill with appropriate bit size

And here's what you do with it:
I measured off three equally-spaced spots across the bottom of the picture frame to mark where I wanted the hooks to go, then drilled three holes slightly smaller than my screw-in hooks using a 3/8 inch drill bit on my power drill. I then screwed the hooks into the holes until their bases were flush with the frame and the hooks faced upright. Then I cut down the scrapbook paper to fit inside the 8x10 frame, used my computer and printer to print out the phrase "I love you because" on it, and inserted the paper into the frame. I then attached the frame stabilizer strips, one to the side of the frame and the other to the side of the dry-erase marker. I put a small picture-hanging nail in the wall across from our door to the garage, and, viola! A place to put our keys and share the love.

Here's what you end up with:
It's cute, right? And functional. We now hang our keys there every day and I regularly leave appreciation messages for my husband (and sometimes he leaves one for me). It can be anything really...earlier this week "I loved him because" he cleaned the bathrooms...when I took this photo it was because he'd given me backscratchies the night it's because he goes to work everyday and brings home the bacon...last week it was because he has a nice butt (he does). It simply forces me to remember not only to appreciate him, but to let him know that I do. And that's a good thing for us. That, and date night. And hugs and kisses. And netflix. And wine.

Now, go get crafty with yourself.

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