Friday, April 3, 2015

Big Girl Easter Basket

      I don't normally post DIY ideas or inspiration via Crafty McCrafterson. However, not only have I been blessed with extra creativity time due to my break, I'm so stinkin' proud of Lilli's Easter basket for this year that I just couldn't help myself. Our "new life" in Nashville has brought with it many changes, one of them being that holidays aren't quite the same. This year we'll be celebrating Christ's resurrection with just the three of us. I'll update Monday with the what and how.
      Lilli had an overnight field trip that I helped chaperone this week, so I set out to take care of her basket early in the week before we left. Instead of the normal stuffed rabbit and junk-filled Easter eggs, I went for something a little more economical and logical, especially since she's almost eleven. As young and still-a-baby-girl as she is, paddle balls, noise makers, and electronic chirping baby chicks don't really catch her eye anymore. And I can't count on both hands how many broken plastic eggs I found, some still full of stale candy, when we moved. I was also privileged enough to lay my hands on a dying chirpy-chick. Have you ever heard the battery failing in one of those things? It sounds like something out of a horror movie. Insert creeped out shiver here.
      A few weeks ago, Lilli and I were making a regular trip to the grocery store. As always, we stopped by the nail polish section because GLITTER, people. It's kind of what we do. . . right before heading to the Barbie section. This serves as blackmail: I let you look at the fun stuff, you give me a whine-free grocery trip. Deal. While standing amid the polish fumes, my child auditioning every color on her tiny digits, me gazing at cheap makeup products with my snobbish I-only-wear-MAC look, it dawned on me:
     "Lilli! Let's make a list! Give me the names of every single polish color you want and we'll check it off for when we do prize grocery trips." I had concocted a plan.
      Every now and then I'll get Lilli a little something at the store as reward for going the extra mile in school, cleaning her room without having to be prompted, etc. These rewards serve as a simple "thank you" or "job well done" outside of the normal verbal encouragement. My reasoning for the list wasn't entirely true as momma always has a better plan and would never give it away so easily.
      Monday night, I executed my plan. First, there would be no overpriced Walton basket for this momma. I'm smarter than that. Normally I get Lilli a traditional Easter basket with a handle for the obligatory egg hunt. This year, I hippity-hopped my cheap tail on over to the Hobby Lobby, my drug dealer of choice, 40% off coupon in hand. There, I found the cutest, most durable, pink and white polka dot, rectangular basket, for $9.99 before the discount. Why is the shape important? Because the shape, dearies, will accommodate the bathroom cabinet. Next, I visited that sacred beauty aisle, list in hand, and proceeded to build my baby's "big girl" Easter basket.
      Instead of spending $4 on that horrible plastic Easter grass that, instead, I could donate to a homeless person, I spent $1 on a 200-count bag of cotton balls that would serve Lilli rather than burden her and my vacuum cleaner. I grabbed most of the polishes she'd put on her list. Now, I know what you're thinking. Polishes can be pricey. Lilli and I are huge fans of the Pure Ice polishes. They wear well, they don't get gunky, they're available in a wide variety of beautiful, rich colors, and they're $1.97 a bottle. Another great brand is Sinful Colors. As detestable as the name may be, the brand is a solid quality when it comes to variety. We haven't worn it yet, but at $1.99 and a WalMart finger test that held up quite well, I couldn't pass up their glittery purple color, Frenzy. Their website is also pretty neat; it showcases their colors and has lots of nail design how-to's and other cutesy ideas. Plus, Lilli likes it. And as similar as it may look to one of the Pure Ice colors in the photograph below, the two shades are completely different.
Colors L-R, B-F: Sinful Colors: Frenzy; Pure Ice: Home Run, Free Fall, Watch Me Go, Wild Thing, So Into, & Selfie

     Lilli had also requested a French manicure pen because she loves French manicures. While these are a little higher than Pure Ice, at $4.98 they do come with an extra bottle of clear polish and are always cheaper than a French manicure at a salon. I also added a nail kit for grooming purposes; for a little under $10, I scored emery boards, a file, clippers, cuticle trimmers, polish corrector sticks, safety scissors, a cuticle pusher, and a nail brush. In the beauty field, each of these tools can be overly expensive. After all, my child is just that: a child. However, my mother raised me to adopt the mindset that it is never too early to teach proper hygiene to our children. And this is a great age to teach a young girl how to safely and properly care for her hands and nails. She knows how to cut and paint them, but now we're getting a little more detailed. There isn't always time or money for a visit to the nail spa. With her little kits, I'm hoping to teach her extra hygienic principles, DIY beauty tips, and frugality. And an added bonus? We get mommy-daughter spa time just for us in the privacy of our own home. She loves stuff like that! 



      To top off her little basket I did go for traditional Easter candy, I just didn't fool with plastic eggs. She loses them, they break, they serve no purpose. . .  she'll not miss them. She would, however, miss the chocolate bunny. For moms with peanut allergic children, it can be a struggle to find novelty nut-free chocolate candies, let alone a chocolate bunny. But Hershey's makes a nut-free Easter bunny! I only found this bugger a couple of years ago and couldn't have been more thankful! Just for giggles I hung a pink loofah on one of the handles of the basket. Lilli absolutely loves Bath & Body Works; her birthday is in a little over a week and I know she'll be getting some goodies from there, so I jumped ahead just a bit. Plus it's cute and added a little flair. 





      Please ignore the background noise in the photos--I seriously had to hide in my closet to put this thing together before she found all of it! I hope this will give you some ideas for your in-betweener baby this year. The key is to simply think outside of the box, or this case, the basket. Enjoy!