I Tri and Craft

thoughts from a mother of boys, a marathoner, a triathlete, a crafter, a wife, and a scientist


Running Motivation in a Temporary Tattoo

If you read my race recap about the half-marathon I ran this summer you saw that I made some motivational tattoos for my cousin and me to wear.

Running Tattoos_MamaSonshine

It was the first time I used the Silhouette brand Temporary Tattoo paper, but I knew that I would be using it again the following month for Sid’s birthday party.  I ran into a few issues as a first time user and thought I would share them, in hopes that other’s don’t have the same troubles.

First I made my design.  One of my favorite motivational quotes for running is “I’m not running half of anything. I’m crushing all 13.1 miles.”  There are a few variations, but I like this wording the best.  I made one for my cousin and one for me.  I had room for one more quote, and since I had two arms I also used “The moment you want to quite, is the moment when you need to keep pushing.”

I sized out the space on my arm and made a box in Silhouette Studio.  I then typed out my sayings and changed the fonts, sizes and colors for specific words.  I then used the offset tool to create my cut lines around the words.  Remember, anything that is white in your design will be clear on the tattoo, and your skin will show through.

My first instinct was to make a close-in offset, as I would when cutting other media.

MSS_Tattoo close offset

Here is the problem: when you cut it, it cuts through the paper backing.  So now you have all the words in different pieces that you would have to place on your arm individually.  So again, remember that the tattoo paper is clear, and make your offset big enough that all the words cut as one piece.

MSS_Tattoo large offset

And there is no reason you need to waste time cutting out the middle of your o’s or other inner parts since the paper is clear.  Release the compound path,


select all the unwanted parts, then delete them.

Now you are left with a nice group of text that will stay together once cut.

MSS_Tattoo Running motivation

Check out your cut lines, make sure you are not cutting out the words you are printing, but just the offset you just made.

MSS_Tattoo cut lines and mirror

Once you have your design and cut lines all set, flip your image horizontally.  This is very important when doing something with words, or your words will be backwards.

The key to the temporary tattoos is Silhouette‘s print and cut feature using the software’s registration marks.  I don’t know about you, but when I print and cut, I change the paper to ‘letter’ (because that is the size of the paper I print on) and adjust my registration mark settings to the smallest available.  One day when I was printing something small I realized I don’t have to waste the whole piece of paper.  I say ‘waste’ because once I printed the registration marks, I couldn’t reprint (for cutting) on that same piece of paper.

So I changed the size of the paper, I know it seems like a simple statement.  But I made the paper size just larger than my image size, with the registration marks, and that left the rest of the paper blank, for use again!  So simple, yet so helpful.

MSS_Tattoo change paper size

The tattoo paper is a bit pricey, about five bucks a sheet; the pack comes with two sheets and is priced at $9.99.  You can find it on sale at Amazon, and sometimes through Silhouette.  I didn’t want to waste any of the paper, and I wasn’t ready to print out the favors for Sid’s party, so I just adjusted the size of the paper to fit my quotes.  That way I still had half a sheet of unprinted paper I could use again.


First you want to make sure when you print, that you print the lines of the words, but do not print the lines of the offset.  (Note: this feature is different if you are using V3)

MSS_Tattoo print lines

Here is where I had the main problem that I really didn’t want to admit to anyone.  It’s a little embarrassing.

I opened the pack of tattoo paper and pulled out the first sheet on top.  The instructions say to print on shiny side then peel of green backing to apply adhesive material.  So I printed on the shiny side.

MSS_Tattoo Printing


My ink wouldn’t dry.  I left it while I went to work, when I got home it still wasn’t dry.  I wiped it off, tried different print settings, still wouldn’t dry.


I googled instructions looking for a video tutorial.  Finally when watching my second video I wondered why their paper was white when my paper was clear with a green paper backing….

Maybe I have to use my own paper, but that seemed silly because the instructions talk about printing on the shiny side…

I went back to the package and looked inside it.  Behind the two pieces of clear paper with green backing was two pieces of white paper with a shiny side.

*hand hits forehead*

Start over.  Printed on the shiny side of the white paper, and ink came out dry and sharp.  MSS_Tattoo Paper Pack

Followed directions by adding the adhesive layer.  That is the clear paper with the green backing that I was trying to print on first.

MSS_Tattoo adhesive layer

This is actually a picture of the tattoos I made for my son, but this is how you apply the adhesive layer

Because I wasn’t using the whole sheet of paper, I used a paper-cutter to trim down both the white sheet and the clear adhesive sheet before joining them.  Then used my Silhouette to cut out the tattoos.

MSS_Tattoo ready to cut

They look great and just the motivation we needed.



Now that I am a pro at the temporary tattoos, I made some as favors for Sid’s party.  However, I neglected to flip the image horizontally, so the words were backwards.  There is always something with me, right?  I decided to let it ride (yep, pun intended) as the guest were toddlers who really couldn’t read anyway.

MSS_Tattoos  MSS_Tattoo party favors



I am already planning my tattoos for my Halloween costume!






Dawn Marie


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Mini-Chalkboard Art


I love chalkboard art.  I love that it can be changed really easily, just erase it and write something new.


The problem I have….


I have horrible handwriting and I can’t draw a stick figure.

Mini-Chalkboard Art @ MamaSonshine

Ok, seriously, look at the one on the left, would you want that on your dresser if you were a kid?  Can you say SCAR-RY.  Nothing about it says ‘I love you.’
Mini-Chalkboard Art @ MamaSonshine

But I found these super cute little chalkboards at the craft store and a chalk marker and wanted to make something for my son.  So I thought I would turn to my Silhouette Cameo and some vinyl to make a stencil.

Mini-Chalkboard Art @ MamaSonshine

I just colored in the lines of the stencil using the chalk marker.  Much cuter, and way easier than writing.

Mini-Chalkboard Art @ MamaSonshine

I made two stencils because I have two chalkboards.  There is no way I would have been able to draw this moon by hand.

Mini-Chalkboard Art @ MamaSonshine

The marker says it will come off with water, but as you can see with the moon one, it doesn’t really come all the way off if you leave it on for a while.

Mini-Chalkboard Art @ MamaSonshine

Ian really likes his little signs, even if he can’t read them yet.  They are super easy to make, and super easy to change the sentiment.





Dawn Marie


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A Superhero Birthday Party

Here is the long-awaited post about Ian’s 3rd birthday party.

Superhero Birthday party

I let him pick out his theme and this year he wanted Superheros.  So I quickly started pinning ideas to my Pinterest Board.

I kept checking with him to make sure he didn’t change his mind about the theme.  Every time I asked him what kind of party he wanted he would throw his fists in the air and shout “SUPERHERO BIRFDAY PARTY!”

I originally thought about taking some pictures of him in his superhero costumes and making a comic book for his invitation.  Due to  my limited time and his unwillingness to pose for pictures, I decided to make a newspaper cover as his invitation.


I used pictures I had previously taken of him.  The hardest part was thinking of what to write!

I wanted the kids attending the party to decorate their own capes.  This was a battle between my mom and I, she didn’t want a bunch of kids gluing stuff while in her house.  I had originally thought of iron-on but then someone would have to man the iron.  In the end we decided it was the best option.

I also decided to go with inexpensive so we used all felt for the capes, masks and decorations.

Superhero Birthday Party

I think we ended up with 24 capes (big enough for a 7-year old), 24 masks and all the shapes for about $40.  Which is less than two-bucks a cape!  The most expensive thing was the binding web.  We made the capes too large and trimmed them to fit each child.  She used this pattern for the portion around the neck.

Superhero Birthday Party

I printed out the shapes and my mom cut them all out, and the webbing to fit.  She went a little overboard, but it allowed for each kid to have as much on their capes as they wanted.

This is one little girl's cape

This is one little girl’s cape

This kids placed the shapes and then a friend of mine, or my mom, ironed them on.

When making decorations for a party I usually find a digital scrapbook kit I like and use it.  I could not find one for superheros.  There were some available, but none that I liked.  So I just used pictures that I found on Google.  I tried to only use ones from Marvel or DC, but I can’t really say for sure where I got all of them.


What party is complete with out party hats?


I used Photoshop to make these and bought the string at the fabric store.  It is elastic thread.

Superhero Birthday Party

I wanted a night-time city scape behind the food table, I got the idea from this post and this one.

Of course Ian needed to help.

I just used a cardboard box and some poster paint.

Superhero Birthday Party

I wanted some hanging decorations and saw this post that used pinwheels.  I usually make decorations for the table dishes but decided to use the circles for the pinwheels.

Superhero Birthday Party

I was so pleased with them that we used the same concept for a baby shower.

My Aunt made this wonderful cake!  Ian was so excited about it.

Superhero Birthday party

Picture by D.Edgley

I saw these suckers all over Pinterest, this post has a printable template, but I just made my own.

Superhero Birthday Party

I printed them on card-stock and used a hotglue gun to glue the masks on.  Superhero Birthday Party

I really like the idea this mom had about adapting the game “pin the tail on…”  I photo-shoped a picture of Ian on a comic book city and had a poster printed.  I did cut out little masks, but we never got a chance to play.

Superhero Birthday Party

I used this posts idea about making a banner with the Superman logo that says “Happy Birthday”

(please excuse my mom’s gold mini-blinds…)

Superhero Birthday Party

I loved the boxes in this post, so I decided to make my own.  I was just going to make a few for decorations, but of course my mom said they had to be filled with candy, which meant I had to make 40 of them!  They all had to be cut out, folded and glued together!

Superhero Party

I made three different styles.  They are my new favorite thing to make.

Superhero Birthday Party

The gift bags we just got at Party City, we added a few things that we found along the way, plus a bottle of bubbles!

Superhero Birthday Party

I made the food labels using the same circles on the pinwheels and on the party hats.

Superhero Birthday Party

This Avengers Scene I downloaded from Spoonful.com.  They had a number of printables that I didn’t get a chance to use.  They had some great masks, like the Hulk and Ironman, but I didn’t get them made.

The other thing I wanted to do but didn’t get a chance to, was to turn my mom’s front porch screen into a red telephone both door.  I just ran out of time.

The End

The Birthday Boy had a great time.



Happy Party Planning






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Pinterest Tuesday Feb 5

On the first Tuesday of every month I will post about something I found on Pinterest that I actually did!  Sometimes it will be about a craft project, sometimes about food and sometimes about a ‘miracle’ cleaning product.

So this months Pinterest Post is actually something I didn’t make, but enlisted my to do so for me.  While I probably could have fumbled my way through this project, it was much quicker to ask my mom.

It is all about nursing!

I saw this pin:

and knew I needed to do this.

One of the things I hated about nursing was the exposed stomach and/or back.  I have a few nursing tops that fix that problem, but they are expensive.

I also have a few of these nursing tank tops from Target.  Which I love, but let’s be honest, there is no support for anyone larger than a B cup.  Plus they are thick and so not very good for wearing under shirts.  But I do live in them at home.

I have a nursing cover, so that takes care of the front, but I still hated thinking my back was exposed.  Not to mention when I am pumping, while no one can really see my torso, it gets uncomfortable and cold.  I thought this was a great solution.

I am not going to post a tutorial because I want you to visit her site to get it.  It is really easy to do, you don’t really even need to know how to sew.

Basically you start with a tank top/cami, I got mine at Forever 21 and only paid about $3 a piece.  I guess everyone knew about their cheap cami prices, but it was news to me!

I then printed the tutorial out for my mom and gave her the camis.

This is what she gave back to me:


My finished cami

I  had her add a little bit of elastic to the back to help hold it up.  They actually stay up just fine as long as the tank is not too big, but it makes me feel better to have the elastic.

Pinterest Cami02

How my cami hooks to my bra

I just attach to my bra and go!  They are not really good for layering if you have a low-cut top because they do sit kind of low on your bust line.

The tutorial is really easy to follow and these are so easy to make!

My mom is so handy with a sewing machine!  I also had my mom make me one of these when I had my first son:

She just used whatever fabric and bra clasp she had around. It fits more like a bikini top then the ones you can buy.  If you are handy with a sewing machine it is fairly easy to make.  Sorry, I wish I had directions on how to do it, but my mom was the one who put it together.  If I have her make me another one I will post it.  She really made me more than one, but I ended up giving them away!

This is another great tutorial for us nursing mamas:

Source: hourglassy.com via Dawn Marie on Pinterest

It is hard to find a good bra, let alone a good nursing one.  So it is great that you can take a normal bra that fist the way it should and turn it in to a nursing one.  I haven’t made this one yet, but the tutorial  makes it look easy.

Happy Pinning