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Sunday, May 10, 2015

My hands can do this --- Handmade Mother's Day Gift

Since I came back from my travel, every time I talk to my mother on the phone to know how she is doing, she always tells me that she has difficulty in talking, but I just keep silent about it.  Actually in her old age, her right ear is already impaired. Last January this year, I travelled more than thousand miles just to take care of her when she became ill.  But she has fully recovered now because she can walk again, but with a caregiver by her side.  Thank God (-.-) I believe the power of prayers of family members and friends helped her a lot.

When I talked to her the other day, she told me the same thing again.  But this time I wasn’t silent anymore because I responded to her by saying, “Mommy, when you like to talk about anything else with somebody, you can talk a lot,” and she chuckled.  Then she said, “My memory is getting weak.”  I responded again, “No, mommy, your memory is still as sharp as the edge of a knife when it comes to counting how much money you have,” and she laughed. When it came to this topic, she briefly narrated (actually I already lost count of how many times she often tells me about this) how she experienced hardship in providing for our needs.  Then she asked me, “When are you coming home again?” I answered, “Just always wait for the little chick to fly home. Stay healthy and alive,” and she laughed again. Then she begun talking to me about anything else the way she used to be.  Before I ended our conversation, I greeted her, “Advance Happy Mother’s Day Mommy, I love and miss you.”  I just heard her murmured, “Hmmm….”  Though she wasn’t expressive,  I know that what I said, touched her heart. 

A mother, who takes her role seriously in bringing up her children well, deserves to be loved, appreciated, respected, and taken care of, especially in her old age.  It’s only when we become mothers ourselves that we realize how much love and sacrifices our own mothers have done for us.  The feeling of being a mother is a continuous process and never ends even when our own children get married and have their own children, as well.  

That’s why,  this Mother’s Day, I’m dedicating this project to my own mother, my two daughters, family relatives, and friends, who are mothers themselves, and all the mothers of this world.  Any project that you can make yourself out of love for somebody is worth doing it.  It’s the thought that matters most.  Gift of flowers is the closest thing to any woman's heart.    

                                                HANDMADE MOTHER’S DAY GIFT  
(1)  empty bottle of Kraft Cheez Whiz
   copper wires  (new or leftovers)
   garden jute strings
   colored straw
   dried roses / artificial or fresh flowers
       dried baby's breath flowers
       glue sticks
       glue gun
       used fabric softener dryer sheet
       needle-nosed pliers
       flush cutter
       bent-nosed pliers
       pencil or pen
       tape measure or ruler
Level of Difficulty – easy
1)  Jar Cleaning
Pour warm water into the empty bottle to easily remove the residue of the sandwich spread.  You don’t need to wash with soap, so to avoid wetting the sticker.  Do not peel off the sticker.  Drain and let it air dry.

2)  Rose Drying
Roses can be dried by storing in a closet or cabinet not often being opened and no lights to preserve its color.  The roses should be arranged upside down with space allowance for the air to circulate and keep their petals and leaves intact.    You can use plastic hangers and bread ties to hang even two to three roses on each side.   Let them stay inside the closet or cabinet till they are dried enough.  It usually takes 2 - 3 weeks before they are fully dried up.  (Note: If you don’t have dried roses, you can use fresh or artificial flowers instead because it takes a lot of time to wait for the drying process to finish before you can start this project.  Since I have already these dried roses, I don’t need to buy anymore fresh or artificial flowers to use.  This is my simple way of drying any flowers without incurring any cost.)

3)     Attaching the Copper Wires
Straighten out these copper wires.  Have a 24 inch copper wire and cut it into half.  Hold the two wire2 together  and position them temporarily around the edge of the bottle.  Using a needle-nosed pliers, twist the two wires together at one side.  Do the same procedures on the other side taking precaution so not to break the bottle as you tighten them lightly together on both sides.  It will look like this as shown on the picture below.

Attaching the Copper Wires
4)     Bending of Copper Wires on Both Sides
In this area, you have to use the bent-nosed pliers together with the needle-nosed pliers, so as not to hurt your fingers while bending the wires. Bend one copper wire like you are forming an oval  shape as shown in picture (a) below.  

Bending of Copper Wires (a)

Don’t worry about the imperfections of the shape because this will serve only as a hook to hold the handle later on.  Bend it going towards the back of the wire and then turn at the front.  Do the same procedure with the other wire.  Twist both end wires together and then cut.  The outcome will look like as shown in picture (b) below.

Bending of Copper Wires (b)

5)     Making and Attaching the Handle
Any leftover copper wire measuring 25 inches or less will do for the making of one handle.  Tie one end around a pencil or pen to make a spiral shape till you reach the end.  Remove the pencil or pen. Stretch one end wire a little bit and insert into the two oval-shaped holes.  Using the needle-nosed pliers together with the bent-nosed pliers, bend and twist the end wire to attach and then cut.  The  outcome will look like as shown in the picture below.  Do the same procedures for the other side.  Make a little adjustment on its spiral shape of both sides.        

Making and Attaching the Handle

6)     Attaching the Garden Jute Strings

Using your heated glue gun, attach the first strand of garden jute string at one side above the label sticker as shown in picture (a), so the initial attachment will be less visible  when you decorate the front view of the bottle.  Provide an inch apart to apply a tiny glue on the bottle again  and stretch the string flat on the bottle.

Attaching the Garden Jute Strings (a)

As for the second round, push with your finger the second string to the first string, so as to stick them together as shown in picture (b).  Do the same procedures around till you reach the edge of the label sticker below and fully covered it.  (Note: As you glue the string and turn the bottle around, you can remove little by little the glue webs. It usually takes a little time to melt the glue stick. It’s a way of maximizing your time while doing this project.)   

Attaching the Garden Jute Strings (b)

7)     Decorating the Front View of the Bottle
I just thought of using the colored straws given to me by a Japanese  woman whom I took care of when I was in California.  I called her  “Obasan” meaning “Auntie.”  She was an artistic woman because she had fond of making “origami.”  She gave me these colored straws a long time ago and I haven’t used them since then, but  only on this project.  So this project has a memory of my loving friendship with another mother.  Another reason why I chose to use them is that it’s like representing the world of a mother as colorful as her love for her family as she performs her different daily tasks for the family as shown in my elder daughter's message below.

To start decorating the front view of the bottle, have set of strands of each color and roll them together around your three fingers two times as shown in the picture (a) below.   

Decorating the Front View of the Bottle (a)

Have even one strand of straw ready on hand to tie them altogether.   Cut the end sides and spread the strands to form a circle.  Trim around and the outcome will look like  as shown in picture (b) below.   

Decorating the Front View of the Bottle (b)

Take another two strands of each color and tie them together  around the bottle.  Glue the bonded straws  at the center where you have the tie.  Cut the excess strands.

8)      Arranging the Flowers
Choose the nicest flowers (dried / fresh) to set up. Measure the stem of 6 flowers 4 inches long, cut, and set aside.  Measure the stem of another 2 flowers 4.5 inches long, cut, and set aside also. Have one flower cut 5 inches long, for this will be placed at the center. You can have 9  to 12 small flowers depending on its size to arrange.  

Put three used fabric softener dryer sheets inside the bottle.  Cut a hole at the center of another  used dryer sheet.  Aside from using it as an accessory for the flower arranging, the dryer sheet helps hold the roses up together, as well as, the pieces of leaves. Though they were used already, they still have good smell. Prearranged the flowers in your hand and insert the stems into the hole of the dryer sheet.  Put them together into the bottle and arranged them again according to height. The first 6 flowers will be arranged around the edge of the bottle, then the next 2 flowers at the center, and the tallest flower  to be placed in between these two flowers at the center.  Insert one stem of dried baby’s breath flower on each side of the center flower and two stems also at the front side. Put some leaves to fill up the spaces.  

If you like to use fresh flowers, you don’t need to insert the fabric softener dryer sheets inside the bottle.  Used only one dryer sheet to hold them up together.  Just fill up the bottle with appropriate amount of water, pre-cut the stems, and arrange the flowers  according to height also.  

Handmade Mother’s Day Gift (with fresh flowers)

Handmade Mother’s Day Gift (with dried flowers)

I dried these flowers I used and set them up again as shown above. They came from the flowers given to my niece by a friend as shown below.  It gave me an idea to preserve them and made this project.   

My niece’s fresh flowers

My niece’s dried flowers
I rearranged the rest of the dried flowers.  I showed it to her and she smelled them.  She was amazed how it turned out still beautiful and its smell and colors almost retained. 

I made other flower arrangements as shown on these links below:
My elder daughter shared this message and she said, this is YOU… and much more… 


Mother / Housekeeper / Chef / Teacher
Nurse / Coach / Chauffeur / Butt Wiper
Monster Slayer / Events Planner
Organizer / Decorator / Hair Stylist
Crafter / Best Friend / Dishwasher
 Launderer / Baker / Counselor
Tear Wiper / Bodyguard / Story Teller
Therapist / Fort Builder / Tantrum Tamer

Multi-tasking Expert / Wonder Woman  

Happy Mother’s Day 
to all 
Beautiful Mothers 
of this 
Beautiful World !!!

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