Stained Glass Chess Set

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I feel like I’ve been posting a lot of stained glass stuff… but I just can’t help myself. It’s so pretty.

This one of a kind chess set was made as a gift from father to son and is just stunning. The pieces are elegant in their simplicity, and the sort of art deco like accents compliment the medium very well. With the lighting element in the base it just makes me want to put it somewhere safe and never touch it again, lol.

The designer is stained glass artist CHRISTIAN BΓ‰LANGER, who has over 30 years experience in the medium. He and his partner run the studio Art Vitrail where they can do repairs to existing stained glass works, such as Tiffany Lamps, restorations on antiques, and conceptual designs for new pieces. You can find a gallery of their work here to peruse through if, like me, you enjoy the beauty of this medium; this one is probably my personal fav. πŸ™‚ A quick heads up though that the site is all in french, so I can’t recommend contacting them for work unless you know the language.

DIY Kinetic Sand

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Only a few days left of holiday shopping, so I’ve got a super simple (and cheap!) DIY gift that you can mix up in a few minutes, and have it ready for play just a few hours later. Here’s the shopping list of materials you will need per batch:

  • 1 Cup of Fine Sand (can be found at craft stores in small amounts or some hardware stores in large bags)
  • 1.5 tbsp of Cornstarch
  • 1 tsp Dishsoap
  • Water (amount will vary as you are looking to reach a touch consistency more then a certain water level)
  • Medium to Large bowl for mixing
  • Food coloring (optional)

First things first, make sure your hands and work space are clean to keep any foreign crumbs or debris won’t accidentally get mixed in. Then, using you bowl, mix together the sand and cornstarch with a whisk; making sure the two are well and thoroughly combined. Next, add the 1 tsp of dishsoap and some water (no more then 1/4c) and start mixing with the whisk again. This step will take some time as you are looking to evenly mix everything without adding too much water. You can always add more water if need be, so best to start small and add if needed. This is the consistency you are looking to achieve:


It should be able to hold form, but not look soupy. This is a bit of a personal preference level as well. Speaking f personal preference, you can now add food coloring to the sand if you wish. About 1/2tsp to 1 tsp should be more then enough to get a nice vibrant color. Once your sand is the color you want, set the bowl aside to let it dry for 1-2 hours. When you come back, it will be like magic.


Your sand should now be moldable and easy to cut and play with! Make sure to store it in an airtight container to keep it from drying out (as unlike the commercial product this has no special chemicals to keep it from happening) or to use as a container to give it as a gift! πŸ˜€

The elusive non-candy treat

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While I don’t have any children myself, I know this topic has been brought up since I would go out during the 80s and early 90s to trick or treat. Kids get too much candy at Halloween. Sometimes that’s true, but it’s also down to the parents of said kids to make sure they eat their new stash at a reasonable pace. So while I don’t have a horse in that race, I thought I’d do today’s post on non-candy treats that parents can do for the many class parties and events that will likely happen as Halloween falls on a weekend this year. πŸ™‚

Great for the 6 and under crowd, this is a simple and cheap treat that young kids can enjoy and play with right away! All you need are some party store eye patches, paper and glue dots.

The bane of all bare footed adults, but kids of all ages love Legos! If you have a Lego store near you, then these are still feasible to make by this weekend (bagging Legos and tying them closed doesn’t take long after all) but orange isn’t always a common color so they might have to be ordered from Lego directly.

This glow in the dark slime is another easy big batch make that young kids will love. You could even call it monster guts/blood when you package it to try an appeal to the older elementary aged kids. πŸ˜‰

I thought this was a nice twist on the classic slap bracelet look for Halloween. All you need is some faux fur fabric, E6000 glue, and googly eyes! Not a gift for the very young though as those eye can be a chocking hazard.

Last but certainly not least, the glow necklace! As many summer parties have proven to me, kids love glow sticks. So what better treat then one the kids can wear and have fun with on Halloween while also helping them stay safe in the dark. ^_^ You may even be able to order them inexpensively and have them shipped to you before the weekend still. πŸ˜‰