Build Your Own Gingerbread House Kit

DIY Gingerbread House Kits

My daughters love decorating gingerbread houses every year before Christmas. Probably, most likely, because they get to consume candy. But I also like to think it’s because of the creative process and making something cute.

We like to make a special evening or weekend day out of it by adding hot chocolate and having Christmas carols playing in the background.

This year, I thought it would be fun to create little gingerbread house kits. I even had fun creating a Build Your Own Gingerbread House tag to make them way more official. Lol.

In case you think they’re cute too, you can print off your very own when you click on this link here!

These are so simple to whip up. Here’s what you need:

To assemble them, add 8 square graham crackers or 4 of the large rectangle ones if they are the brand name ones by Christie (pictured below). I like the brand name ones best because you can cut the large rectangle on the top half on an angle so it has a point. This is so the roof crackers have a sturdier resting point.

After this, fill the bag with an assortment of candy. I bought all of ours from Bulk Barn. Seal the sandwich bag.

Once you’ve printed out the tag, cut it out, fold it in half, then staple it to the top of the sandwich bag. Ta da!

The icing I used didn’t fit inside the bags, however, you could create a mini piping bag filled with icing that should fit nicely if you’re giving it as a gift!

You can make your own icing or you can buy it like I do. The premade icing in a can by Betty Crocker and the likes, also works really well!

gingerbread house kit

I think it would be so fun to have a Gingerbread House making party with a bunch of friends! Young or old!

What are your holiday traditions that you find yourself doing every year?

Homemade Sore Muscle Soak

I think this Homemade Sore Muscle Soak would make a perfect gift for someone on your list! Or perhaps it would make a great addition to a spa basket you can make up?

I often find myself with sore muscles in the fall. I think it’s because we’re out hiking more and working outside more. 🙂  Because of this, I find it really nice to have a warm bath with some of my homemade sore muscle soak!  This one smells delicious because it uses fresh mint and lavender (or essential oils).  Here’s how you can easily make up your own batch of homemade sore muscle soak:

Homemade Sore Muscle Soak



  1. Begin by mixing your Epsom salt and baking soda in a bowl. Mix well.
  2. Chop your herbs fine and add them to the mixture. Or, add your oils at this time. For the mixture you see here, I used fresh mint and used lavender oil in place of the fresh lavender.
  3. Continue mixing well. The moisture from the herbs and oils may cause some clumping. This is not a big deal. Just use your spoon to break through the clumps.
  4. Store the mixture in a glass jar with lid or air tight container. I like to let it sit for a few hours before using.
  5. To use your homemade sore muscle soak, just pour it into a running bath. The lavender will help you relax and ease muscle tension, the mint will help revitalize, and the Epsom salt and baking soda will help with inflammation and pain.
  6. When done, drain your tub as usual. You may wish to remove any larger herb clippings by hand to avoid drain issues.

homemade sore muscle soak

Here are some other homemade ideas you may like:

5 Creative Ways to Use Fallen Leaves

Creative Ways to Use Fallen Leaves

Creative Ways to Use Fallen Leaves

Are you up to your ears in leaves? If your yard is home to numerous trees, you might find yourself overwhelmed with leaves this fall season. So what exactly can you do with all of those leaves, other than rake them? Well the good news is they do have a few fun uses! Take a peek at these 5 creative ways to use fallen leaves, in ways that are both fun and frugal!

1. Craft a scarecrow.

Fallen leaves are perfect for stuffing and filling scarecrows. Save leaves so when you are ready to craft your scarecrow, you have plenty to create the body, legs, arms, and of course, head. Leaves make perfect stuffing material and fill up the scarecrow nicely.

2. Make giant yard pumpkins.

Buy orange yard waste bags found at your local home improvement store or Amazon. Some are plain orange while others might have the pumpkin faces already on them. No worries if you can’t find any with faces, you can always add your own with a black marker. Simply fill the bags up with leaves, then tie the top for yard pumpkins that make the perfect outdoor fall décor.

3. Craft spooky ghosts.

creative ways to use fallen leaves

Take white trash bags and fill the bottom with a handful of leaves. Twist the bag and tie it to create a round head shape. You can use a black marker to draw the face of a ghost directly onto the bag, and then add string for hanging. Place the ghost in a tree or porch for a spooky effect.

4. Make spooky yard spiders.

Take a black trash bag and fill it with fallen leaves. You can then use white paper to craft eyes and attach them with craft glue. Painted PVC piping can make legs as well as long cardboard tubes or even pool noodles. How spooky would these be to see in your yard around Halloween!

5. Create a leaf fort.

Find a large cardboard box that can be used as the fort’s main foundation. Cut a square to enter. Spray the box with spray adhesive and apply the leaves to the outside of the box. One or two layers is sufficient. When you are done you should not be able to see the box and it will look like the entire piece is made from leaves.

Did you ever think that leaves could provide so much fun? Start raking up those fall leaves and then give these fun ideas a try and see all the ways you can put those fallen leaves to use. You are sure to enjoy lots of family fun with very little cost to you.

How to Catch Fruit Flies at Home

How to catch fruit flies

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How to catch fruit flies at home

Fruit flies can be so annoying, can’t they? It seems they are impossible to avoid and eliminate. If you find your home filled with pesky fruit flies, I have a tried and true technique to get rid of them. It’s so simple and requires only two easy to find ingredients. Here’s how to catch fruit flies at home:

Tried & True Fruit Fly Trap:

When you already have fruit flies in your home, gather up some apple cider vinegar and dish soap.

Next, fill a bowl with apple cider vinegar and add a few drops of dish soap.

Bam! That’s all you need to catch fruit flies! Soon you’ll be seeing those pesky things floating in your concoction.

The fruit flies are attracted to the sweetness of the apple cider vinegar. The soap reduces the surface tension of the liquid, causing the fruit flies to sink and drown when they land on it.

By placing a jar or two in areas where you notice a lot of flies, you’ll soon be seeing a lot less fruit flies in your home. Whew!

Check the traps regularly and empty them when they start to accumulate fruit flies. Rinse out the traps and replace the apple cider vinegar and dish soap as needed.

Here’s how you can prevent fruit flies:

  1. Wash all produce when you get home from the store.
  2. Refrigerate promptly the produce that belongs in the fridge.
  3. Freeze or toss overripe produce.
  4. Clean up any spills promptly.
  5. Keep your kitchen sink and drain clean.
  6. Regularly empty and clean your garbage cans.

With these simple tips, not only will you know how to catch fruit flies, you’ll know how to prevent them from showing up in the first place.

How have you dealt with fruit flies? Tell us in the comments below!

How to catch fruit flies

Homemade Fire Starters

Homemade fire starters

How to make homemade fire starters

Get your outdoor fun underway with these easy homemade fire starters using items you have on hand! Perfect for the backyard bonfire or the weekend campfire!

Don’t throw out that dryer lint quite yet! These homemade fire starters will put that lint to use and two more items you most likely have on hand already! Really, all you need is some lint, toilet paper rolls and wax paper.  They’re ridiculously easy AND are a great way to “recycle” materials you already have.

Here’s how to make Homemade Fire Starters:


  • Dryer lint
  • Toilet paper/paper towel rolls
  • Wax paper
  • Scissors
Homemade fire starters


1. Remove the lint from your dryer lint trap
2. Cut your paper towel rolls into thirds or leave toilet paper rolls whole
3. Stuff your paper rolls with the dryer lint, but don’t pack it in too tight
4. Cut a 6″ piece of wax paper
5. Place your paper roll in the center, wrap the long sides over each other and twist the ends
6. Trim the ends of your wax paper if you’d like

TO USE: place one of your fire starters under a few pieces of kindling and light the end of your wax paper

** Lint is very flammable, store in a metal box

homemade fire starters

25 New Uses for Old Things You Really Want to See

new uses for old things

25 New Uses for Old Things

One aspect of the frugal lifestyle is using things you already have on hand, even if they don’t work perfectly for the task. Rather than running to the store to buy something (and most likely spending a bundle), you could try improvising by using something you already own. It’s amazing how much stuff we already have to work with, once we’re able to train ourselves to stop running to the store for every thing we think we “need”.

In today’s post I hope to help spark creativity and give you new ideas for looking at the things you already own in a new way. With the ultimate goal, of course, making you rethink your normal spending habits.

Is there something you need right now, that you were planning to buy, that you could possibly create a solution for using something you already have?

I rounded up 25 amazing and creative new uses for old things. I am very inspired by these upcycling ideas, and I hope that you will be too!

25 New Uses for Old Things:new uses for old things

  1. CD Case Greenhouse – via Tauni Everett
  2. Upcycled Crib into an Art Table – via a Little Learning for Two
  3. Cheese Grater as an Earring Holder – via Simply Frugal
  4. Empty DVD Case into a Coloring Kit – via No Guilt Mom
  5. Rake Wine Glass Holder – via Homedit
  6. Old Door into Garden Bench – via Dumped and Discovered
  7. Empty Pop Boxes into Can Storage – via Alaska Granny YouTube
  8. Old Door into a Bed Frame – via Handy DIY
  9. Cookie Sheet Magnetic Tray – via Fave Crafts
  10. Wooden Crate as decorative Shelving – via Curbly
  11. Upcycled Sweater Pillow – via Infarrantly Creative
  12. Old Drawers into a Book Shelf – via Amber Oliver
  13. Old Door into a Coat Rack  – via HomeTalk
  14. Old Nightstand into Kids Work Bench – via The Frugal Granny
  15. Milk Jug Watering Can – via Simply Frugal
  16. Upcycled Books into Shelves – via Remodelaholic
  17. Altoids Tin into Pin Cushion – via Felt Magnet
  18. Toilet Paper Roll Wall Art – via Pennywise Cook
  19. Shutter Magazine Rack – via My Repurposed Life
  20. Rain Gutter Kids Bookshelves – via Sunshine on the Inside
  21. Plastic Spoon Chrysanthemum Mirror – via Addicted 2 Decorating
  22. Mason Jar Herb Garden – via Camille Styles
  23. Old Chairs into cute Bench – via Instructables
  24. Upcycled Spoon Ring – via Through the Front Door
  25. Upcycled Blue Jean Tote – via La Creative Mama

Have you ever upcycled or re-purposed anything?  What did you make?  Which of these 25 projects inspires you the most?