MOPS Christmas: DIY Custom MOPS Ornaments

Our annual Christmas ornament exchange is one of our group’s favorite traditions. We each bring a gift-wrapped ornament and take turns swapping them in a fast-paced exchange. It gets a little competitive! The best part – every mom leaves with a special keepsake.

Some of the most popular ornaments are the ones that commemorate MOPS in some way, like these:

Photos: Christin W., Lara S., and Colleen Hazlehurst

About these ornaments:

  1. Christin gave this cute squirrel some personality by adding a “Nuts for MOPS” sign.
  2. Christin used a Sharpie marker to add “MOPS 2010” to this LOVE ornament.
  3. Colleen painted this mitten and added “MOPS” at our pottery painting Moms Night Out.

As you can see, if you don’t win one, you can easily put a special touch on almost any ornament. For more ornament ideas, check out our ideas from our MOPS Christmas Craft Day and these DIY Personalized Christmas ornaments. Merry Christmas from your friends at MOPS!

 

Meeting Review: MOPS Christmas Crafts Day

We spent a morning crafting and connecting at our MOPS meeting on Nov 27. Thanks to Kelly’s and Kristina/Yvonne’s groups for providing the brunch! The food was fabulous, as always (check out this recipe for the Country Breakfast Casserole).  We gave away some great door prizes – this time for Chick-Fil-A ice dream cones!

This was our Thanksgiving-week meeting, so each table was decorated with a Gratitude Tree. The moms were invited to add their blessings to the leaves. The trees were also door prizes for some lucky moms who got to take them home.

Due to a half-day for local public schools, we had a short meeting and it was all about crafts. Our Creative Activities leader, Christin, brought a variety of projects for everyone to try. She did a fantastic job and we all got into the crafting spirit. Take a look at some of the results (with instructions below):

Photos: Colleen Hazlehurst

1. Popsicle Stick Ornaments:
Christin supplied popsicle sticks (plain and in primary colors), ribbon, beads, buttons and other adornments. The moms went to work designing their own creations (here’s a basic tutorial). This one is Jessica M.’s. She made it a special keepsake by adding her family’s names and the year.

2. Felt Christmas Trees:
Christin brought pre-sewn felt Christmas trees, with an opening at the top. The moms stuffed them with batting, tied a ribbon around the top of the tree to close it and hang it, then glued on “ornaments” made from sequins, beads, or buttons.

3. Scented Soy Candles:
Using crock pots, soy chips, and small jars with lids, Christin melted these candles during our meeting. When the soy was melted, a mom could add the essential oil of her choice to a candle, add a wick, and place it in the refrigerator to solidify (we happen to have a kitchen attached to our meeting room). The available scents included cinnamon, “Love Spell,” vanilla, pumpkin spice, tea tree, eucalyptus,and lemon. These were a big hit with the moms. Here’s a tutorial showing a similar method.

4. Felt Snowmen Ornaments:
Christin brought pre-sewn felt snowmen (triangle-shaped) with an opening at the top, and pre-cut scarves and hats (rectangle-shaped). The moms stuffed the snowman bodies with batting, tied the hat on with ribbon to close and hang the ornament, then drew on eyes and glued on other features, like a carrot nose and buttons.

Other crafts, not pictured here:
Moms could also make gift tags by cutting shapes from Christmas-themed scrapbook paper and using rubber stamps to add the “To” and “From.” Also, Christin brought the leftover materials for our birds nest necklaces, so we could make some to give as gifts.

It was fun to see each mom express her creativity. Even though we were all doing the same crafts, no two were the same. It was a great meeting. Big thanks to Christin for all her hard work pulling it together!

Our Next Meeting & Christmas Party – Dec 18

Our next meeting is our MOPS Christmas Party on Dec 18! Everyone is asked to bring a dish for the brunch. Let’s make it a festive holiday buffet!

You’ll want to bring a gift-wrapped ornament to participate in our Annual Christmas Ornament Exchange. Also, Paula will demonstrate a very special Nativity Craft you can do at home later with your children. We’ll also have a fun photo booth, so bring your camera!

Plus, we’ll have lots of great raffles! Tickets will be available at the party for $1 each or six for $5. All proceeds will benefit our wonderful MOPPETS childcare program!

Please look for the event invitation on our private Facebook group (or talk to your Discussion Group Leader) and RSVP by Dec 13. See you there!

nativity craft for kids

Paula will demonstrate this Nativity Craft at our Christmas party so you can do at home later with your children. Here’s a tip: start saving your paper towel rolls now!

Our DIY Coffee Mugs for MOPS

Our MOPS meetings get a kick-start from, you guessed it, coffee! So, we designed our own MOPS coffee mug. This mug makes a great gift or raffle item – and not just for Mentor Moms, although they were the inspiration. We’re sharing how we did it so you can easily make mugs like ours or design your own.

To make the mugs, we uploaded our image files to our favorite online photo service (we use Snapfish) and designed the mugs there. For this mug, we used the MOPS logo on one side and our own image on the other. Several versions of the MOPS logo are available in the Leaders section of MOPS.org. If you want to use our design, you can download our “Keep Calm And Ask a Mentor Mom” image here.

Photo by Colleen Hazlehurst

 

For something a little more hands-on, check out the very personalized DIY coffee mugs we made for each other at our Steering Retreat! Of course, some great pre-made MOPS logo mugs are available at the MOPS shop on the MOPS International web site, too. If you do design your own, let us know! We’d love to see it!

Once again, here is our coffee-cup sized version of our Keep Calm and Ask a Mentor Mom image. Feel free to use it. Just click the image to open it and save it:

By Colleen Hazlehurst

Click the image to download our Keep Calm and Ask a Mentor Mom image. This version will fit nicely on a coffee mug.

MOPS Christmas: Mom-Hosted Tables at our 2012 Mixer

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In 2012, we celebrated Christmas with an evening mixer. We invited MOPS moms to host our five tables, decorating them however they wanted. As a result, the room was colorful and festive – absolutely beautiful! Let’s take a look back at our mom-decorated tables from our Christmas Past:

ChristmasTables2012_LaraColleenText640

Lara M. and Colleen’s table won the Best Table vote with its theme from the classic movie “A Christmas Story.” The table was a festive sight, with a Christmas tree centerpiece featuring “leg lamp” lights, handmade ornaments with photos from the movie, mini candy canes, and old-fashioned bulbs. Around the tree are the Parker family’s wrapped and partially peaked-on presents, including a bowling ball for dad, bunny slippers for Ralphie, a mini Radio Flyer wagon, the boys’ stockings, and of course a mini Red Ryder BB gun. Lara and Colleen decorated the chairs with big red bows. The place settings included a printed Christmas Story dinner plate on a gold charger, topped with a fortune cookie and a glass Ralphie magnet (Colleen made them like this). Under the plate was a list of trivia questions. The table guest who answered the most questions correctly won a copy of the movie. The party favor was Lara’s famous homemade fudge wrapped in a festive Chinese take-out container. Silverware included a set of chopsticks for each guest. Also, Lara made plaid, cloth dinner napkins, which each guest got to keep.

ChristmasTables2012_Christy640Christy’s table features a creative white snowflake cutout over a silver tablecloth, a centerpiece of floating candles, and snowflakes hanging over the table. Each guest received a wrapped favor at her silver and white place setting.

ChristmasTables2012_Christin640Our Creative Activities leader Christin set an elegant table featuring a three-tiered tower of high-heeled shoes surrounded by billowing snow. Strings of red and silver ornaments hung over the table. The place setting were silver and white, with real silverware and cloth napkins.

ChristmasTables2012_LauraLaura’s nativity-themed table featured gold and red decor with a beautiful snow globe centerpiece. Each guest received a party favor at their place setting and a candy cane sharing the biblical symbolism of the candy cane.

ChristmasTables2012_MentorMomsOur mentor moms – Pat, Donna, and Melene – teamed up to decorate this elegant gift-themed table. The red and silver decorations mad a gorgeous table, with a tower of gifts as the centerpiece.

MOPS Christmas: Pottery Painting on Moms Night Out

This Friday night, we’re continuing a new MOPS tradition – our pottery painting Moms Night Out! This is a fun, relaxing event where moms can unwind, talk, snack, laugh, get a little artsy, and create a keepsake. In fact, this is the perfect opportunity to personalize an ornament for this year’s ornament exchange!

The cost is a discounted studio fee of $5, plus 10% off your pottery.  Your painted pottery will be available for pick up at the studio by November 22 – plenty of time in advance for Thanksgiving and Christmas pieces!  All of the event details are available in the Events section of our private Facebook group. Or, if you aren’t on Facebook, just contact Colleen or  your Discussion Group leader. We hope to see you there!

MOPS_PotteryPainting2012

A MOPS Christmas Craft: DIY Personalized Ornament

Here’s a vision from our MOPS Christmas Past: last year’s DIY ornament. Our Creative Activities leader, Christin, showed us how to use ribbons and paper to transform inexpensive craft store bulbs into sentimental, personalized Christmas ornaments.

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A DIY personalized MOPS Christmas ornament.

Here’s Christin stuffing a clear craft store bulb with scrapbook paper and ribbon. For hers, Christin wrote “MOPS 2012” and her children’s names with a marker on some of the larger, decorative, paper scraps.

2012MOPSChristmasOrnamentCraft_Table

Christin making her ornament.