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How to Stop Your Dog From Barking

Disclosure: This past has affiliate links for which I make a small commission if you make a purcahse. This post is NOT sponsored and all opinions are 100% my own.

If you have dogs or live near dogs, then you know how they can get on a roll with the barking. At 3am. Or at the moment when you’re trying to talk on the phone for work or get the baby to sleep or record audio for a YouTube video.  Our new neighbors just got a pitbull and some other large scary looking dog and they fight with our dogs through the fence. This last week, they busted a few of the slats on the wood fence apart and Xaver and I knew we needed to take drastic measures before the dogs broke through and killed each other. I had a barking deterrent device a few years ago when we first moved in because the renter neighbors who used to live next door (5 or 6 families ago) had ridiculously loud barking dogs. All of our bedroom windows face the fence where the dogs run back and forth, barking. Barking at the cats. Barking at the moon. Barking at each other. Barking Barking Barking!! After those people moved, the barking stopped and I loaned the bark device to a friend who had a similar problem. Well, I forgot who that was to ask to borrow my barking tool back now that we have this problem. I knew there had to be a way to stop your dog from barking. I mean, I have a spray bottle but the neighbor probably wouldn’t like me spraying their dog in the face every time it barked at me (I’m seriously tempted though!!).

Last week we went to PetSmart to look at pet doors and we saw that they had a whole section devoted to barking control. Who knew? I mean, its so obviously a problem, right? The Sunbeam Sonic Egg seemed to be the best deal so we decided to go with the largest model since the dogs are large. The PetSmart employee assured us that the Sonic Egg worked well and that we needed two of them to get the right focus on the sound. Um, no, that’s okay. I got one and figured if it didn’t work, I could return it. No use spending $100 on “maybe”, know what I mean?

The way these devices work is they emit a high-pitched sound that only the dogs (allegedly) can hear. (I think the cats can hear it too bvut Xaver thinks I am crazy) The device only emits the sound when it detects a bark-like sound. There are several settings on it that allow you to set different frequencies depending on what your dog responds best to. To set it up, you need to “bark” – I walked in on Xaver doing this and I thought he was being a dork, barking into the device to see if he could hear it. But apparently, the instructions tell you to bark. Sure, buddy.

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The first night we put the device in my bedroom window, since I am the lightest sleeper and the dogs bug me the most. The device is supposed to have a range of 50 feet and the dogs congregate about 10 to 30 feet from my window. The device didn’t seem to do much.

The next night, we put the device in Xaver’s window, about 10-15 feet from where the dogs hang out. It worked slightly better as I noticed a little bit less barking but there was still barking – the dogs just seemed to move out of range and continued barking.

Finally, I put the device on my patio table, 10 feet from the fence, pointed straight at the area where the dogs bark the most. The wind blew it off so Xaver stabilized it between two candle lanterns and a couple of bricks. It is battery operated so I need to remember to change the batteries but it won’t get wet under the patio so I think this is a good place for it. There’s a wire hanger on the top to hang it as well – maybe from the eaves?

I was outside doing a little gardening and watching to see what the dogs did. The neighbor dogs barked and our Australian Shepherd whinned – he could sense the sound even though he was out of the radius of the Sonic Egg, according to the box the Egg came in, and he wasn’t even barking.  After a few more short barking sessions, the dogs all stopped barking.  The Sonic Egg has been outside now for 5 days and the dogs bark very little. Since the Sonic Egg is almost on the property line, the dogs go to the furthest places from the Sonic Egg as possible to bark at the far corners of our property and even then, the barking is short, quieter sessions. It’s pretty awesome! If the barking in the corner of the yard starts to be a problem. I’ll probably get a second Sonic Egg to put on the other side of the yard.

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If you have a barking dog problem, whether the dogs are inside or outside or they are not even your own dogs, try this Sonic Egg out. It definitely has saved my relationship with my neighbor, I can sleep more, and the neighborhood is alot quieter. You can pick up the Sonic Egg at PetSmart but you can also order it online at Amazon:

Keep up with our crafty adventures by subscribing to the Hydrangea Hippo Crafty Newsletter.

Jennifer Signature Block-Fall 2014

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Easy DIY Ombre Gold Letters – Holiday Craft Lightning

I’m so excited to be sharing a project on the Holiday Edition of Craft Lightning!! Earlier this week I shared how to make a book page wreath and kicked it up a notch by spray painting it with Krylon ColorMaster spray paint and Krylon Glitter Blast to give it an ombre glittered look. Today I am going to share a similar technique that you can use on paper mache letters to create a word decoration for your mantle, wall, or bookshelf.

JOY Ombre Glitter Letters by Jennifer Priest of hydrangeahippo with Krylon Spray Paint 2

 

I chose the word “JOY” but you can choose any word for your faith, for a different holiday, or even choose a name, like your family name or your favorite pet.  Here’s how to create these letters:

Isn’t that ridiculously easy? You could totally do this with two colors of spray paint or with a different color of spray paint + Glitter Blast, which comes in a BUNCH of colors.

JOY Ombre Glitter Letters by Jennifer Priest of hydrangeahippo with Krylon Spray Paint

Once the Glitter Blast has dried, add a coat of Krylon Glitter Blast sealer to seal the glitter and prevent it from flaking off.

Supplies:

  • Paper Mache, Wood, Or Metal Letters
  • Krylon ColorMaster Metallic Gold Spray Paint
  • Krylong Glitter Blast in Golden Glow
  • Krylon Glitter Blast Clear Sealer

Wouldn’t this look seriously cute tied to a gift or covering a candy-themed Christmas  tree?

Keep up with our crafty adventures by subscribing to the Hydrangea Hippo Crafty Newsletter.

Jennifer Signature Block-Fall 2014

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How to Make a Junk Journal

Junk Journal by Jennifer Priest COLLAGE

I have been seeing lots of fabric journals lately as I’ve moved away from spiral binding my own handmade books. I took a binding workshop a couple years ago and have always loved the look of stitched books. A few weeks ago, at Seaside Soiree, an event produced by Charity Wings, Jen Cushman shared a journal project with me that she had created in a class with Kristen Robinson. It was fun and quirky and totally junky. Inspired by what Jen created, I decided to take some of the junky things in my stash and create a few “junk journals” of my own.  Here’s one of them:

 Altered Fabric and Paper Scrap WHITE Christmas Album - TOMBOW -  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo 6 Altered Fabric and Paper Scrap WHITE Christmas Album - TOMBOW -  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo 7 Altered Fabric and Paper Scrap WHITE Christmas Album - TOMBOW -  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo 8

This post also serves as my round 2 entry in the Tombow Designer Challenge so, why not show you how to use Tombow’s new Xtreme adhesive to make a junk journal. Tombow sent me this new Xtreme to try out a few months ago so I totally knew what it could do when they sent me a second pack!

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Though this particular mixed media junk journal is Christmas themed, a junk journal can be used as an art journal, a scrapbook, or even as a smash book of sorts for a trip you’ve taken. Gather ephemera from a trip, from your stash, or go thrifting and yard saling to find unique fabrics, papers, maps, and other items to include in the journal. You can assemble the entire book with ONE adhesive, Tombow Xtreme!

Supplies:

  • Tombow Xtreme Adhesive
  • Wallpaper Samples
  • Clearsnap Smooch Spritz in Ginger Ale
  • Lumiere Paint
  • Delta Acrylic Paint in Metalic Kim Gold
  • Needle and Craft Thread (thick)
  • Assorted Fabric – canvas, denim, chiffon, organza, cotton, linen
  • Assorted Ribbon and Lace
  • Assorted Ephemera – buttons, handwritten notes, book pages, mini Christmas trees
  • Die Cuts – Sizzix Christmas Tree from wool felt
  • Sewing Machine (optional)
  • Scissors Pinking Shears

You know how I roll – of course I made a handy dandy video for you to see. Watch the process and get started on making  journals of your own. The best part is, no sewing mahcine required:

Keep up with our crafty adventures by subscribing to the Hydrangea Hippo Crafty Newsletter.

 

Jennifer Signature Block-Fall 2014

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How to Make a Gilded Book Page Wreath for the Holidays

I have seen soooooo many paper wreaths and I have to admit, alot of the time they look crazy! There are some real challenges in making a book page wreath and it totally looks easier than it is. I recently received some gorgeous gold spray paint and glitter spray paint from Krylon and knew it would be perfect for making a gorgeous gilded book page wreath for the holidays.

Wreath and JOY Ombre Glitter Letters by Jennifer Priest of hydrangeahippo with Krylon Spray Paint Collage

 

I used to offer a tutorial for making these wreaths in my online class, Dictionary Couture, but since I am no longer teaching that class, I felt it high time to spread the book page love. so grab an old enecylopedia and let’s get to upcycling… here’s how to make a gilded book page wreath for the holidays:

You’ll need some supplies so I’ve created a handy dandy list here for you with some affiliate links to cool places to shop, like Amazon:

Gold Glitter Book Page Wreath by Jennifer Priest for Hydrangea Hippo with Krylon Spray Paint 2

I hope you enjoyed this project and learned a little about making those popular cone book page wreaths for yourself! You can use maps, music, wrapping paper, and even Kraft Paper to make these. Consider gilding just the edges of the wreath with spray paint if you like the look of the pages as they are.

Looking for more Krylon holiday inspiration with Kyrlon spray paint? Check out these videos from my fellow Krylon VLOG Collaborators!

Angela Davis of A to Z Custom Creations

Vicki O’Dell of The Creative Goddess

Rhonda Greene of Mrs. Greene

Jenny Barnett Rohrs of CraftTestDummies

 Keep up with our crafty adventures by subscribing to the Hydrangea Hippo Crafty Newsletter.

Jennifer Signature Block-Fall 2014

 

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Holiday Decor with Duck Tape – Crafty Hangouts

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Crafty Hangouts and their advertiser Duck Brand. This post contains affiliate links for which I make a small commission on purchases. All opinions are 100% my own.

This month Crafty Hangouts is sponsored by Duck Brand tape!! I love Duck Tape and it comes in all kinds of colors and finishes like Glitter Duck Tape, Metallics, and Prints as well as sheets that you can cut in an electronic cutting machine, with a craft knife, or in a manual die cutting system to create really cool holiday decor with Duck Tape. I received a great assortment of holiday colors and am excited to share a few easy holiday projects in my extra long video. I know, time got away from me but there’s like 4 different projects in the one video so I hope you enjoy it! 

Christmas Holiday Duck Tape Projects  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo Crafty Hangouts 1

Metallics are so in this holiday season. I think I’ve seen no less than 89 tutorials on Pinterest for painting metallic stripes or patterns onto glassware and wood to make holiday decor. But spray paint is not always a good option if you live in an apartment, are pregnant, or live in a super windy area, like me. Enter Duck Brand Tape! You can add stripes and strips of Duck Brand Tape to anything to make it have that holiday shimmer and sparkle instantly. Plus, you can remove the tape when you’re done with the holiday display. Pretty snazzy, right?

Holiday Duck Tape Projects  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo Crafty Hangouts

Here’s a holiday flower arrangement I got on clearance at Target this week. I covered a damaged area and added some holiday shimmer with metallic Duck Brand Tape in Gold and Silver.

Holiday Duck Tape Projects  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo Crafty Hangouts 3 Holiday Duck Tape Projects  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo Crafty Hangouts 4 Holiday Duck Tape Projects  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo Crafty Hangouts 11

Next, I decided to upcycle a Starbuck’s bag into a reuseable gift bag, with Duck Tape.  I get so many of these bags and after I reuse them once, they fall apart. It seems like a shame! You can do this project with any “nice” paper shopping bag and never have to buy gift bags again. Seriously. I am never buying gift bags again. You can arrange the tape on the bag in any pattern you like to cover the logos on the bag and add color. Unlike paint or paper, the Duck Tape reinforces the bag making it stronger and longer lasting.

 Holiday Duck Tape Projects  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo Crafty Hangouts 6

Holiday Duck Tape Projects  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo Crafty Hangouts 5

To match the bag, I made some gift tags with Duck Brand tape, an indelible marker, and a stamp with solvent based ink. 

Holiday Duck Tape Projects  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo Crafty Hangouts 10

And finally, I made a really cool traditional holiday gift bow using Duck Brand Tape! These bows look really cool with the glittered outside and colored inside and you can use them year after year because they won’t crumple and fall apart like those el cheapo bows mom and dad used to buy.

Holiday Duck Tape Projects  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo Crafty Hangouts 7 Holiday Duck Tape Projects  by Jennifer Priest for hydrangeahippo Crafty Hangouts 8

Here’s how to make all of these projects:

Of course, you’ll need a few supplies so I broke it down for you here, by project. 

Supplies:

Gift Tag:

Gift Bag:

Gift Bow:

Metallic Stripe Floral Arrangment:

You can see more Duck Brand projects on the Crafty Hangouts website and on Duck Brand’s social media accounts here:

Be sure to enter our giveaway with Duck Brand and Crafty Hangouts using the Rafflecopter widget below before November 23, 2014:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

What would you create with Duck Brand Tape this holiday season?

 Keep up with our crafty adventures by subscribing to the Hydrangea Hippo Crafty Newsletter.

Jennifer Signature Block-Fall 2014

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Show You’re Thankful By Giving Back

Every year people do canned food drives in the fall. They collect warm coats for the homeless. They “give”. Because it is the “Season of Giving”, right? There’s also a trend to express how we are thankful for the things we have by posting about them on social media. Some people do it daily, others do a weekly summary, and others post lists on their blogs.  But what if we showed we’re thankful by giving back?

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Reader’s Digest featured an article this month (November 2014 issue) in the Art of Living section titled “Giving is Great. Giving Smart is Better” (Page 35), that was a repost from xojane.com. It was an amazing article because it pointed out all of the ways that people fail at giving to those “less fortunate” than they, especially during the holidays. The article contained 10 tips for “giving smart” as well a list of crazy items that have been donated to relief efforts, causing more harm than benefit. I highly suggest reading the article because unless you’ve been on the receiving end of donations, you probably never thought past the good feeling of “donating” to the next step of whether the item was practical, wanted, or perceived as thoughtless.

When I really think about it, it seems we do these shows of “giving” when it is visible and for ourselves, not supremely for the benefit of the receiver. We’re not really thinking practically about the person who might receive this item. Do they need a down jacket from Macy’s? Do they need to eat more than just during Thanksgiving when we do all the food drives? Do they want to eat your cast-off pickled herring in a can because they’re “hungry”? Some people are doing an amazing job at giving (I’m thinking of Betsy Burnett who does a shoebox drive every year as one great example) but it takes practice. If we don’t do it often, we won’t be any good at it. Hence why I am still “round” since I only went to the gym once this year. Yeah, that once a year thing ain’t gonna work.

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What if we did something more than share with the world all of the “blessings” of things we have?  

I think giving is the ultimate way to show your gratitude. To God. To the world. To yourself. You might be tithing or regularly giving to your local food bank or charity. That’s awesome. But in this month, in addition to posting photos of all your “blessings” to Instagram, consider calling your local food bank and finding out what they REALLY need, buying it, and taking it to them. And if you don’t give unless it is the holidays or you never give at all, consider making a change this year. Find a charity or food bank or church whose mission you can get behind. If you don’t know where to start, just google “local food banks” and the name of your town. You can also check out Homeless Shelter Directory for a list of shelters in your town.

A few years ago (like alot of years ago!) our Girl Scout Troop made blankets for the homeless. We made comforter style blankets, the kind that are like a quilt but instead of quilting, you sew a bit of yarn every so often and tie a knot. They’re super warm. Back when I was working as an analyst for the Title I Ryan White HIV/AIDS Program Grantee for San Bernardino and Riverside Counties (I know, long crazy name) I learned about lots of local charities, homeless shelters, food banks, and substance abuse houses. Not only did these places offer services to HIV/AIDS patients but also to anyone needing help, really. Families, children, singles, people just down and out on their luck. I learned about Central City Lutheran Mission, located in downtown San Bernardino. They were co-located with a church, which they opened every night to allow homeless to sleep on the pews. Many of the homeless had no belongings or warm clothes, let alone blankets. When the mission did get blankets, the homeless person usually kept it for both sanitary reasons and because it was the only thing that belonged to them. It made them feel human.

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We taught the girls important lessons but it was also a lesson to all of us involved.

Make this month of gratitude come full circle. Instead of giving once, give every day. Or once a week. Instead of posting a photo of your favorite pillow that you are grateful for, make a cash donation to the charity of your choice. If you want to take a photo of that, as part of the #gratitude photo series, awesome. If not, that’s fine too.  Consider how giving can be the ultimate show of gratitude. And then consider how to make your gift the most useful it can be. I know I am changing my giving ways for sure! 

And, if we tackle that, maybe some day we can take this beyond a month and make it all year long.

Well. A girl can dream.

Keep up with our crafty adventures by subscribing to the Hydrangea Hippo Crafty Newsletter.

Jennifer Signature Block-Fall 2014

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Bark Edge Chalkboard Foodie Gift Set – Handmade Holidays Day 3

Disclosure: I was provided product to create this blog post. All opinions and projects are 100% my own. Post contains affiliate links. Handmade Holidays 2014 Hop Logo

Welcome to the 4th Annual Handmade Holidays Blog Hop! Today is the final day of our hop and I hope you have enjoyed all of the ideas that the bloggers and designers have created. It’s really my hope, in being the organizer of the hop, that you find this hop list as a resource for making handmade gifts uring the holidays but also all throughout the year. There’s an idea here to fit everyone oyur list and every occasion and my wish is for your to leave the hop inspired and ready to create!

 DIY Bark Edge Chalkboard and Gold Tipped Spoon Gift Set by Jennifer Priest for Hydrangea Hippo - Handmade Holidays 2014 COLLAGE

My final project is a bit of a simple one but goes along with the ever-so-popular rustic theme in home decor.

 Bark Edge Chalkboard and Gold Tipped Spoon Gift Set by Jennifer Priest for Hydrangea Hippo - Handmade Holidays 2014 5

 I loved the Walnut Hollow DIY Delivery Bark Edge Chalkboard Kit when I first saw it. Walnut Hollow put everything you need to make the ever-popular bark edge chalkboards into a kit that costs less than $15?! I couldn’t believe it either — amazing! You can create TWO of these chalkboards with the kit.

Bark Edge Chalkboard and Gold Tipped Spoon Gift Set by Jennifer Priest for Hydrangea Hippo - Handmade Holidays 2014 6

 Pair them with wooden spoons, like I did, or oven mitts, a cookbook, or even an easel to display the board to make a thoughtful, unique, and on-trend gift. 

Bark Edge Chalkboard and Gold Tipped Spoon Gift Set by Jennifer Priest for Hydrangea Hippo - Handmade Holidays 2014 2

 This gift goes together quickly, but there are a couple of hours of dry time needed for the chalk board paint. Bonus – there’s LOTS of leftover chalkboard paint after making the two bark edge chalkboards in the kit so consider using the rest of the paint on an old mirror, picture frame, or cookie sheet to make more chalkboards.

Who knew you could use ink to dye wood?

Bark Edge Chalkboard and Gold Tipped Spoon Gift Set by Jennifer Priest for Hydrangea Hippo - Handmade Holidays 2014

 Now, these spoons will lose the shimmer and sparkle of the ink if you let them sit in water or run them through the dishwasher so hand washing is recommended. Also, I wouldn’t mix a batch of Kool-Aid with them – the spoons will be dyed watermelon red and some of the mica in the ink may end up in your drink. But they’re pretty and you can totally serve a salad with them!

Bark Edge Chalkboard and Gold Tipped Spoon Gift Set by Jennifer Priest for Hydrangea Hippo - Handmade Holidays 2014 3

 The effect is so pretty and ethereal, not harsh like the spray painted spoons I’ve seen online. Are you inpired to make these? I gathered some handy dandy links to help you get the exact supplies you need for this project.

Supplies:

Are you ready for lots more creative handmade gift ideas and projects??

Follow along on our blog hop! Simply click on each of the links below to be taken to that post with additional information and photos on how to create a handmade gift project. Have fun and pin away!

Clearsnap 

Westcott 

Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L 

Ellison Educational Equipment 

ICE Resin 

Neat and Tangled 

Therm O Web 

Walnut Hollow 

Elizabeth Craft Designs 

Rowland Technologies 

Graphic 45 

Hydrangea Hippo  

Pink and Main 

The Buckle Boutique 

Tami Mayberry Art & Design – Tami Mayberry 

Jamie Dougherty – Jamie Dougherty Designs 

Elizabeth Craft Designs – Raquel Mason 

Meagan – The Charming Farmer 

Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L – Angela Ploegman  

Carolyn Dube – A Colorful Journey 

Pink and Main – Mistyana Wright 

The Buckle Boutique – Niki Wilson 

It’s Sew Lorine – Lorine Mason   ‎

Therm O Web – Andy Knowlton 

L. Grace Lauer – Uniquely Grace 

Clearsnap – Meihsia Liu

Oh Snap Lizzie – Lizzie Sanchez

Graphic 45 – Katie Zoey Ho

Charity Wings

ICE Resin – Tatiana Allen

Polly Carlson – Pieces by Polly

Ellison Educational Equipment – Jan Hobbins 

RoseRedd Paper Studio – Rochelle Washington

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Follow our Handmade Holidays Gift Ideas Pinterest board for even more inspiration!

Follow Jennifer Priest of RainMaker Media Works + Hydrangea Hippo’s board Handmade Holidays on Pinterest.  

A huge thank you to our sponsors for this hop – please visit their blogs & websites below and follow them. And be sure to come back tomorrow for another 30+ amazing Handmade Gift Ideas!

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Clearsnap || Ellison Educational Equipment || Walnut Hollow || Graphic45 || Westcott || ICE Resin || Therm O Web || Rowland Industries || Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L || Pink and Main || Elizabeth Craft Designs || The Buckle Boutique || Neat and Tangled

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