I Tri and Craft

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


Hand Made Decorations for a Pirate Party

This past month I have been busy making Ian’s birthday party decorations.  I wanted to share a few of the items I am making.

I don’t want to spoil the surprise, so this is just a sneak peek at what I can do now that I have my Silhouette Cameo to help me.

Ian had decided he wanted a pirate birthday party this year.  I wanted his invitations to be pirate chests that open up to revel treasure, and a treasure map.


I quickly gave up trying to draw a treasure chest and just purchased a cut file from the Silhouette Studio Store.  After which I ran it through my Cuttlebug to emboss the paper with a wood grain.


I went to Photoshop and created a picture of coins and jewels that matched the shape of the card.  I imported that image into the Silhouette Studio software so that my machine would cut around all the little shapes for me.


I also created a cut out that would contain all the information on the card.

It says

“Avast, me hearties!
Join us for a swashbucklin’ adventure
Shiver me timbers! Captain Ian is turning 4
Board ye ship ‘n follow ’tis old map
to find a buried birthday treasure!”


I used the digital graphics from Just So Scrappy‘s YoHo Pirate kit (as I will do for various other items I made for this party) to make cut out a treasure map.


The three elements inside the card were made with the Silhouette’s Print ‘n Cut feature, which I think is da bomb!

I cut the treasure chests out in a light brown and dark brown cardstock.  I also cut the straps in the same two colors, I then used the light straps on the dark chest and vice versa.  The buckles and locks were cut out using a gold-colored cardstock.  I glued all the elements together, except the map, which I attached with a brad so it can be moved.

Using the same digital graphics I created a pirate flag topiary  table decoration.  I had to create my own cut file for the flag portion, cutting out the skull and crossbones.


I sandwiched a white piece of cardstock in between the two flag pieces, which I glued to a paper straw.  The base is made using the print and cut feature, it is an adapted cupcake wrapper shape.

MSS_MarchSilChallenge_2014 copy

And what it just wouldn’t be a party with out party hats!


For the pin wheel I used the sketch feature that can only be found in the Silhouette Studio Designer Edition.


I ‘hand’ drew the skull and bones, and by hand I mean I used the draw polygon tool.  I used the sketch tool to make the skull look more hand-drawn.  I used a black Sharpie Marker to draw the lines with the Cameo and then made the cut around it.


This is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to decorations that can be made using a personal cutting machine.  I would never have been able to cut out all the pieces to make forty invitations, if I had to do it by hand.

I have much more planned and will revel more after the party.

Happy Crafting


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Want to Check Out More Silhouette Projects?

My Silhouette Challenge buddies and I are all sharing projects on our blogs today, so peruse the projects below for a wealth of Silhouette inspiration!

The Great Lamp Rescue Barnyard Animal Paper Garland & Party Details Sweet and Simple Easter Bunny Card Owl Theme Baby Shower Ombre Paint Chip Earrings & Free Cut File Spring is Blooming Drop It (Like It's Hot) Hexagon Tray Spruce Up Your RECIPE BOOK Gift Card Giving Free Cut Files Custom outlines for stamps Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Juice Boxes Wine Themed Bridal Shower Learn How To Make A Sewn Paper Garland! Moroccan Thank You Card 3D Flower Spring Wreath For the Love of Paper: Cutting Embellishments Create Your Own St. Patrick's Day Cupcake Wrappers and Toppers Swimming Word Art St. Patrick's Day Lime White Chocolate Chips Cupcakes + Freebie You're invited to a dog party! I'm so Lucky! Spring Wreath with SIlhouette Cut Flowers Tiny Princesses Paper Dolls Colorful Quote with your Silhouette Get Well Bouquet with Persimmon Roses Greeting Card Holder Baby Shower Invitations How-To Create a Custom Pillowbox on Your Silhouette Machine + Free Cut File! Quality Time Jar Matchbox Cover with {FREE CUT FILE} DIY Baby Girl Shower Invitation Candy Alphabet Travel Game Paper Garland Pretty Paper Roses DIY Geometric Heart Journal Hand Made Decorations for a Pirate Party Wedding Shower Gift Heart Map Decoupaged Letters (A scanner + A Silhouette = Spectacular results!) Easter Pop-up Box Card with Sweet Sorbet Designer Paper from Stampin' Up! Better World Greeting Cards Star Wars Silhouette Canvas Monogrammed Gifts Make Printable Gift Wrap with your Silhouette Software Free Printable: Blank Banner with free Silhouette Cut File

1. McCall Manor // 2. The Turquoise Home // 3. Creative Savings // 4. Sandpaper and Glue // 5. The Thinking Closet // 6. Sowdering About in Seattle // 7. Persia Lou // 8. From Wine to Whine // 9. Dream a Little Bigger // 10. Please Excuse My Craftermath… // 11. Play. Party. Pin. // 12. Everyday Paper // 13. Practically Functional // 14. A Tossed Salad Life // 15. My Favorite Finds // 16. The House on Hillbrook // 17. Adventures in All Things Food // 18. A Glimpse Into Barb’s Life // 19. TitiCrafty // 20. The Experimental Home // 21. feto soap blog // 22. Creative Ramblings // 23. The Stamp Doc // 24. Ginger Snap Crafts // 25. Simply Kelly Designs // 26. Whats Next Ma // 27. unOriginal Mom // 28. Bringing Creativity 2 Life // 29. Cutesy Crafts // 30. My Paper Craze // 31. Create & Babble // 32. Grey Luster Girl // 33. The Sensory Emporium // 34. Lil’ Mrs. Tori // 35. Black and White Obsession // 36. Mama Sonshine // 37. Weekend Craft // 38. Creative Carnival // 39. Peace, Love and Joyce // 40. Tried & True // 41. The Frill of Life // 42. Dragonfly & Lily Pads // 43. Get Silvered // 44. Minted Strawberry


Birthday Pirate Shirt

When my son makes a decision he sticks to it.  The past two Halloween’s I asked him to pick a costume in August and he stuck to that choice. For TWO months.

Oh, did I mention he is three?

His birthday is next month, March, so in December I mentioned that we needed to start thinking about a theme for his birthday party.

Without hesitation he asked for a Skeleton Birthday party.

We were in the car with my husband and we were talking about it and this is what was said:

Hubby: do you want a Dia de Muertos party?
Ian: No dad. A skeleton party.
Hubby: I know but a Dia de Muertos party has skeletons…
Ian: No Dad! a skeleton party because skeletons are my favorite.  Skeletons, turtles and seals are my favorites.

So I started planning a skeleton party.  For about a week.  Until we got a catalog with party supplies in the mail.

Ian looked through it for a few days.  He kept talking about who was going to have what party.  He then said “This boy is gonna have a pirate birfday party” while pointing to his chest.

After some discussion we decided to have a pirate party instead of a skeleton party.  There was still almost three months to plan.

He has not changed his mind, but he has picked out his next five party themes.

I wanted to make him a shirt for his birthday party.  My Silhouette Cameo has the ability to cut heat transfer material to iron on clothes.

I designed a shirt with a skull and crossbones wearing a birthday party hat and the words “Birthday Pirate” instead of ‘Birthday Boy’

It was going to be a surprise but when the only time you have to work on something is when the kids are home nothing is a surprise.   Everyday he asked where his skeleton shirt was and if he could wear it.


I was finally able to say yes, and he was so excited.  Only about 2 months before his party.

You can read about the process in a three part series starting here.


Want to Check Out More Silhouette Projects?

My Silhouette Challenge buddies and I are all sharing projects on our blogs, so pursue the projects below for a wealth of Silhouette inspiration!


  1. DIY Screen Printed Curtains by Chicken Scratch NY
  2. “Cute as Cupid” shirt by crafts, cakes, and cats
  3. Easy Easter Bunny Onesie – Silhouette Cameo Craft by Adventures in All Things Food & Family
  4. Hearts-A-Lot Burlap Pillow Cover by My Paper Craze
  5. DIY Monogrammed T-shirts with Silhouette Heat Transfer Material by Pitter and Glink
  6. Sew Cute Applique by Life After Laundry
  7. Machine Applique with SIlhouette Cameo by The Sensory Emporium
  8. Mommy and Em’s Coordinated Aprons by TitiCrafty
  9. Valentine’s OWL Always Love You T-shirt by My Favorite Finds
  10. Teddy Bear by Work in Progress
  11. Fabric Envelopes for LEARNING LETTERS! (& cut file) by From Wine to Whine
  12. Upcycled Birchbox Cameo Accesory Organizer by Cupcakes&Crowbars
  13. No-Sew Valentine’s Day Pillows by A Tossed Salad Life
  14. Nerdy Baby Onesies + Free Cut File by Essentially Eclectic
  15. Lady Bug Tote Bag with Silhouette Rhinestones by Ginger Snap Crafts
  16. Valentines Baby Onesie & Boy’s Shirt + Free Cut Files by The Frill of Life
  17. Easy Fabric Art by McCall Manor
  18. Easy Heart Appliqued Onsies by Create & Babble
  19. DIY Bleach Spray Shirt by Practically Functional
  20. Felt Star Wands by Cutesy Crafts
  21. Baby Quilt by Dragonfly & Lily Pads
  22. Canvas sketch project and a share by Clever Someday
  23. Glitter Iron-On Top by Simply Kelly Designs
  24. Crawl, Walk, Bike by It’s Always Craft Time
  25. Stenciling Sherlock by Please Excuse My Craftermath…
  26. Monogrammed Burlap Garden Flag by The Turquoise Home
  27. “Team Betty” Tote Bag by The Thinking Closet
  28. Customizing textiles with Heat Transfer Vinyl (working title) by feto soap
  29. Foxy Lady Pajamas by Mabey She Made It
  30. Rhino Onesie by It Happens in a Blink
  31. Surprise Holiday Banner by Whats Next Ma
  32. No-Sew Interchangeable Fabric Bunting by unOriginal Mom
  33. Freezer Paper Stenciled Tote Bags by Weekend Craft
  34. Fabric Applique Valentine’s Day T-Shirt by DailyDwelling
  35. Pretty Up Some Organza Bags by Getsilvered
  36. Birthday Challenge by Fadville
  37. Yoda Kid’s T-Shirt by Architecture of a Mom
  38. DIY Sock Minion by Create it. Go!
  39. Big Sister Gift & Silhouette Cut File by Creative Ramblings
  40. Bleach Pen Gel & Freezer Paper Stencils Made with the Silhouette Machine by Bringing Creativity 2 Life
  41. Fabric Painted Quilted Wall Hanging by Terri Johnson Creates
  42. Nautical Pillows by Lil’ Mrs. Tori
  43. Mark Your Territory- Dog Flags by Black and White Obsession
  44. “Good Morning, Sunshine!” Memo Board by Tried & True

Happy Crafting


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Menu Plan Monday Jan 27

Happy Monday everyone.

Typically I like to share some food related pictures with my meal plan.  It’s just the way I am.

I realized that I haven’t pulled out my camera in weeks!

I did take this video of Baby Sid in his post dinner joy, but it was with my phone.  And it is super cute.



Menu Plan 1/27-2/2

Mon:  Pizza Casserole 

Tue:  Cream Cheese Stuffed Chicken with pasta

Wed: Parmesan Crusted Pork Chops with Extra Crispy Parmesan Smashed Potatoes 

Thr:  Philly Cheese Steak Sloppy Joes

Fri: Left Overs

Sat: Kitchen is closed

Sun: Braised Short Rib Stew


Happy Cooking


Need something to help plan your meals?  I use the Plan to Eat online meal planner.  Try it free for 30 days

Simple Meal Planning - Plan to Eat

Find more recipes at I’m an Organizing Junkie

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Menu Plan Monday Jan 20


Do you like spaghetti?  Do you have an Old Spaghetti Factory?

The Old Spaghetti Factory

If you do, they are celebrating their 45th anniversary.  In honor of 45 years, they have specific dinners for only 4 or 5 bucks!  Kids meals are $3.

What a steal!  But it is only good the 20th and the 21st of Jan.

So I will not be cooking tonight, we are going to the Old Spaghetti Factory.

Every year, well almost every year, we have celebrated my birthday there.  So it holds a special place in my heart.

*all images from the Old Spaghetti Factory


So the rest of the week looks like a crock pot kinda week…


Menu Plan 1/20-1/26

Mon: Dinner out

Tue:  Crock Pot Chicken & Brown Rice

Wed: Slow Cooker Ravioli Lasagna 

Thr: Crock Pot Peppercorn Steak and Potatoes 

Fri: Left Overs

Sat: Kitchen is closed

Sun: Sage Pork Chops with Lemon Risotto (Carry over from last week, because I didn’t end up cooking)

Happy Cooking


Need something to help plan your meals?  I use the Plan to Eat online meal planner.  Try it free for 30 days

Simple Meal Planning - Plan to Eat

Find more recipes at I’m an Organizing Junkie

Top Mommy Blogs - Mom Blog Directory