Dec 23, 2015

Stress Less this Christmas

Is it just me or the closest we get to the Christmas holiday, the longer the gift list seems to miraculously grow.  Just when you thought you were done with your shopping it's, "Oh, what about my child's caregiver, teachers, the mail man...wait, the UPS man who delivers all of my Kharismatic Kreations supplies...hold up, I forgot the administrative assistants..."and the list goes on and on. Although we all sing and shout, "Jesus is the reason for the season," many of us are running around, struggling and stressing, trying to do last minute Christmas shopping for our ever growing gift list.  This year I decided to make gift giving full circle.  I'm using the gifts that I was blessed with to bless others, affordably, and I encourage you to do the same.

If you have a knack for crafts and DIY, use your creativity to make gifts like the Merry Mason Jars filled with chocolate covered pretzels I crafted for my daughter's teachers and before and after caregivers.  Or the gloves that I made for my co-workers.  If you are good at baking, bake some cookies or a cake for the mailman or the delivery person as I plan to do for the UPS man.  Hey, if you are good at singing, call a loved one who is sick and shut in or someone who hasn't heard your voice in a while and gift them a singing telegram/telephone call.  The point is, we all have gifts, and Christmas is the celebration of the most perfect and wonderful gift to mankind, the birth of Jesus Christ.  As I am trying to explain that to my five year old daughter who is more interested about the gifts that she is getting, I think that being a living example of what I am attempting to teach her will go further than me just singing, "Jesus is the reason for season."  It also allows us the opportunity to spend quality time crafting, baking, and thinking of thoughtful ways to spread joy to others - which is a gift within itself.

God did not send his only begotten son for us to live in bondage to debt.  He sent his son to set us free from sin, to give us peace, new hope and unfailing love.  Use the gifts that He has given you to give peace, hope and love to others.

Merry Christmas to all!  Peace and blessings ~ Kelli 

Dec 6, 2015

Gifts from the Heart are Golden

When I was a kid I remember my mother giving my sister and I a few dollars to buy Christmas gifts for our family and friends.  It wasn't a lot of money, and as we grew older we would put our money together for some big purchases that we wanted to make for those we loved the most.  This taught me three things:  one, gifts from the heart are the most valuable; two, it taught me the value of money and how to save and budget; and three, even if you do not have a lot of money, you can use your creativity to bring a smile to someone's face.  

This year as I am diligently saving for the Kharismatic Karavan, a mobile boutique by Kharismatic Kreations, my Christmas gift budget has been decreased, but my creativity has increased and I still want to share my blessings with others.  

A quick and affordable craft that you and your children can make for co-workers and/or friends are embellished gloves.  During the winter months everyone can use an extra pair of gloves on hand, so why not make them fashionable and personable.  Stretch gloves cost only $1 and can be found almost anywhere - Walmart, Target, Dollar Tree, or your local craft store.  You can also purchase embellishments like rhinestones, gems, and bows at those stores.  If you have some mix match earrings, some brooches, or buttons, you can use them as embellishments instead of buying them.  Since Kharismatic Kreations does custom printing, I created my own custom embellishments.  I used the heat press to apply them directly onto the gloves. You can stitch or hot glue the ribbons and bows. You can do the same with a hat and make it a set.

There are many affordable ways to spread peace, love and Kharisma this holiday season.  Give the gift of creativity.

Happy Holidays!


Nov 15, 2015

Crafty Vendor Booth Display

Kharismatic Kreations often serves as a vendor at area events, selling t-shirts and spreading peace, love and kharisma along the way.  But when the host of OverAccessorized Girls Night Out, one the largest unique shopping experiences in the Baltimore Metropolitan area, gave vendors the green light to go all out and get crazy creative with vendor displays and set up (within the parameters of the event space of course); my creative light bulb started flashing and ideas started flowing. 

Kharismatic Kreations offers affordable, high quality custom printed shirts and gifts, using heat transfer printing and/or screen printing techniques.  For me, each shirt or creation is considered a work of art – a unique custom masterpiece, so I wanted my vendor booth and display to resemble an art gallery.   But not just any art gallery, I wanted it to have a pop art theme.  And it was only fitting that I focused on the work and style of Andy Warhol, one of the leading artist in the pop art movement who often used screen printing as a technique to create his famous masterpieces.    

Artistic Backdrop

First I needed a backdrop.  It had to be something compact that I could easily store and transport and I really didn’t want to have to put something together and break it down each time I had to use it.  So I set my mind on using a room divider, but where to get one fast and for an affordable price?  I searched the discount and bargain stores including the Goodwill, Ross, and TJ Max until I found a hidden gem in the youth department of Home Goods. 

It was easily foldable and could fit in my car, though it could have been a few inches taller, the height was suitable and at approximately five feet it could fit easily into my car.  But the color and princess detailing had to go.  It would have been very cute for a little girl’s room and my daughter probably would have loved it, but that was not the purpose I had in mind for it or the vision in my head.  But being short on time and cash I reluctantly purchased the room divider and thought of ways to transform it into the backdrop that I needed and envisioned.

I grabbed some chalkboard spray paint from Walmart and decided to cover the pink and princess detailing.  It took two full cans and two coats of spray paint to fully cover the pink princess room divider. 
Walmart also had these wired display racks on clearance for $1.00 each.  I spray painted them metallic gold and used them to hang my two Andy Warhol prints from  the iconic Campbell’s Soup Can and famed Marilyn Monroe.  Using my logo, stock photo and help from a pop art photo filter app, I made my own version of a Warhol original to hang.

Directional Signage
I already have a banner with my business information on it to use for my table, but I wanted to some additional signage to point event attendees in my direction and creatively clarify what I am selling.  This idea literally popped in my head while going up and down the aisles at Walmart.  I purchased the directional chalk board at Walmart.  Because of my love for gold and glitter, I couldn’t resist adding my personal touch to the chalk board by outlining them with gold glitter. 

For the base of my sign, I used poster tube packaging and wrapping paper.  I wrapped the decorative paper tape around the tube to make a black and white chevron pole.  I used my hot glue gun to attach the chalk board signs to the poll.  I poured marbles in the tubing to give it some additional weight and added a flower from my house to the top of the tube for an additional creative touch, and to close the whole at the top.  

Oct 23, 2015

Trick or Treat T-shirt Tote (Say that 3 times!)

On a recent visit to Sarah’s Hope Hannah Moore Shelter, Kharismatic Kreations used some old sample prints and misprinted shirts to create Halloween Trick of Treat Tshirt Tote Bags for youth activities.  During my Summer of Yes, I created a t-shirt tote bag that I used on vacation, but for this particular youth activity, we tricked the t-shirt tote bag so that the kids can fill them with treats for their Halloween Trunk or Treat event.

We started by using black misprinted shirts as our canvas to make the t-shirt tote bags.  Then using the colored test print shirts, we cut out shapes to glue designs onto the tote bags.  I had stickers, flowers and other decorations on hand, just in case some kids did not celebrate Halloween and just wanted to make a tote bag.  This activity was a hit and affordable!

Sep 25, 2015

Frugal Fall Wreaths

During our monthly Youth Activities volunteer time with the children of Sarah’s Hope Shelter, we celebrated the coming of Fall by making Frugal Fall Wreaths.  This craft is super simple and affordable, and with a little creative twist, I made it fun and exciting. 

To start, I printed off an Autumn Scavenger Hunt list.  This made the activity more interactive as the kids had to take a nature walk around the park, collecting items on the list that would serve as materials for their craft.  So the more items collected, the more options they would have.  It was like an Easter egg hunt, but fall inspired. 

Before meeting with kids, I grabbed a pack of fall themed paper plates from the Dollar Store and cut out a circle in the middle to form the base of the wreaths.  Additionally, I purchased some ribbon to hang the wreaths. 

Once the kids finished their scavenger hunt, they brought their materials back to the craft table and applied them to the paper plate wreath cut-outs using glue and tape.  Some kids went a little over board with the glue.  It was a free fall for all!  
It's no secret that I love glitter so I hand some on had to add an additional touch of sparkle.  A fun, frugal, fall craft that won't break the bank.

Aug 10, 2015

Summer of YES!

At the beginning of the season I favorited a tweet from Mama Knows It All, a fellow Mom Blogger, who wrote a post entitled, Summer of Yes:  Family Bucket List.  A Summer of Yes, as she described it, is a summer filled with fun and family, no excuses, no matter how busy you are.  After reading her post I decided to accept the challenge.  Sure, I’m busy working full time in addition to managing a business and being a single mom, but there were so many things that I wanted to do and the fear of scarce resources (mainly time and money) were limiting me. In the midst of my full time work schedule, mommy commitments, and multiple t-shirt and Crafty Kreations orders, I decided to decrease the fear and increase the faith, be a little creative and crafty, and embark on a #SummerOfYes! Here’s a quick recap of my most memorable and crafty moments:  

Free Outdoor Concerts and Events

One of my favorite things about summer is all of the outdoor concerts, festivals and events.  This summer I made the time and saved money by attending local events.  I would bring my lawn chair or picnic blanket, a book, some snacks and crafts, and simply enjoyed the entertainment and overall atmosphere.  At one event I made a tote bag out of an old, oversized t-shirt.  

To make the tote bag, you cut off the sleeves of the shirt, and cut down the neckline of the shirt as deep as you want the opening.

Next, you cut 1 1/2 inch wide strips at the bottom of the shirt all the way across. Cut up as deep as you want the tote bag to be.  Grab the strip from the front and double knot it to the strip directly behind it.  Repeat this for all of the strips.
 I also made a floral crown in 3 minutes by pinning $1 floral pins to a plain black stretch headband. 


My parents decided to plan a "GRAND" vacation with just them and the Grandkids in sunny Florida.  So my sister and I took our free time away from our kids to have a "Momcation."  I started planning for us to spend 4th of July weekend in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.  We were going to attend a cousin's birthday dinner and decided to extend the trip and the fun.  The itinerary I lined up included yoga on the beach, spa treatments, water sports, fireworks and outlet shopping.  This was the first vacation my sister and I shared, with just us, in over 10 years.   
The floral crown was a staple for the #SummerOfYes.  #FlowerChild

4th of July hair bows out of Dollar Store scarfs.

New York State of Mind:  Wendy Williams Show

My co-worker grabbed tickets to the Wendy Williams show and asked if I wanted to join.  Without hesitation, or thinking about finding a sitter, securing the money, etc...I said yes!  Well it is the #SummerOfYes right?!  All things worked in my favor (thank you sweet Jesus) and I caught the Megabus up to NYC just for a day to go to the Wendy Williams show.  Now, I've experience the Wendy Williams show before as an audience member, but this time was a little different.  When the producers asked if anyone had an Ask Wendy question, of course I said yes (again this is the #SummerOfYes).  My question was selected to be answered by Wendy, which meant my face and voice was going to be on live TV!  Behind the scenes the Ask Wendy segment is rehearsed over and over again.  They even tweak your question/story line to make it more interesting.  The show has since aired at least 3 times and I still get text and FB messages asking, "Kelli, did I just see you on Wendy Williams?"  My answer...."Yes!"

#MiniAdventures with Mother Nature

I was a Girl Scout up until around the 6th grade, and as an adult I was a Troop Leader of Daisy Troop 3212 for 5 years.  So the urge to go camping didn't seem out of the norm for me.  But instead of basic camping, I had to step it up just a bit for my little diva and plan a week of glamping and outdoor fun with Mother Nature.  My sister's family joined us in our adventure.  We kicked it off with white water rafting.  It was a first for all of us.  River Riders is just an hour away from Baltimore and offers all types of outdoor excursions including zip lining, rafting, kayaking, etc.  I was a little nervous at first because there are dangers involved in white water rafting and my Mini isn't a strong swimmer; she's just learning, but we survived, and I got a good upper body work out.

The following day we set up camp in a cabin in the woods at Fort Whaley Campgrounds in Ocean City, Maryland.  We had a barebones cabin, meaning there was nothing in it besides a place to sleep in the form of bunk beds and one full size bed.  It was a cute little hut in the woods that we would call home for 3 days.  We cooked outside & made s'mores, had to use a bath house a couple of feet away to use the bathroom and shower; but thank God for the electricity and air conditioning in the cabin because it was hot!  Our camp stay included admission to a waterpark at Frontier Town which was a few miles away, and shuttle access to the Ocean City Boardwalk.  This was definitely a memorable experience that I will do again in the future.

My T-shirt tote bag came in handy during our camping trip. 

Fun on the Home Front

Sometimes I looked no further than my own front yard for fun.  I spotted some cute and easy summer activities on Pinterest to keep my little "TurnUp" Princess occupied like these water balloon pinatas.

We're 2 weeks away from the start of the school year and I"m glad to say we made the most out of summer with one or two adventures left ....but why let it end here?  Let the adventures continue....