Tag Archives: teacher gifts

Never have your pens stolen again!

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I have seen various versions of this in schools, classrooms, and offices, so I finally decided to try it myself. At work, in the library, it is such a public space that I can’t keep pens or pencils for long…they disappear! So I figure that my pens will be harder to walk off with when they look like flowers, or does that make them more tempting to steal….?
To make your beautiful pen flowers you need:
Some floral tape, some silk flowers, a glue gun, pliers, and a few pens (I used the Bic style of pen because I thought if the ink ran out, you could just pull out the center part with the ink, and replace it with ink from another pen)

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I started by using a pair of pliers to pull out the stopper at the end of the pen.

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Then, I pulled the heads off of the flowers, which left enough of the stem to stick in the end of the pen. I used as much hot glue as I could squeeze in to glue the flower heads on.

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After the glue had cooled, I started to wrap the pens with the floral tape…

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I learned a few things about floral tape… the first thing I learned was that is doesn’t become sticky unless you stretch it, like an elastic…and the second thing I learned was that it stays sticky. If you take a close look at the pen on the left side (below), you can see it has a grip. If you can get your hands on pens with a grip like this, I would recommend using them because the floral tape does make the pen a little sticky.

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After wrapping a few, I decided that they would look better with a leaf, so I pulled a few leaves off the stems.

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Then, I trimmed the leaves so that the had more of a stem…

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The I glued the leaf to the pen with my glue gun…

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And, wrapped the pen with some more floral tape…

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I ended up making a bunch…they were quick and easy and I figured they would make a great end of the school year present for teachers, office gift…etc. I think what I need to do is make a vase or stand to hold them…As usual, I’ll keep you posted!

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Home made tea!

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Every year I normally make close to 100 jars of jam during the summer, and for the past few years, I have given the jam as gifts to the kids teachers, friends, and family. This year, I decided to try something new, and make some home made tea to go along with the jam.
I didn’t really follow any recipe, but I will give you the list of ingredients that I added to each kind of tea. I just basically mixed things that I would taste good together, then boiled some water, and did a few taste tests… I think the trick to making the tea into a special gift is in the packaging. Here is how I did it…

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I got the ingredients for each tea from a few different places. From my garden, I dried the lemon balm, some of the chamomile, rose petals (must be pesticide free), and stevia (which is a natural sweetener). I ordered the jasmine flowers, some of the chamomile flowers, and the tea bags on line, from an organic grower in the states… I will try to find the name or link to the website (I haven’t tried posting a link yet!) I bought some of the green tea from a Chinese grocery store around the corner, and some of the other ingredients came from bulk barn. I also used my food dehydrator to dry a lot of the fruits that I put in the fruit teas, and the ginger.
Basically, I started by mixing a teaspoon of each ingredient, made myself a tea, and if I liked it, I mixed a larger batch. The kids loved helping to mix the ingredients.

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After I mixed each type of tea, I scooped a few tablespoons into sealable plastic bags from the dollar store, and then used wedding favor boxes from Michaels to put the bags in. I thought the tea was too pretty to be hidden in a box, so I cut a window in each box with an exacto knife. At Michaels, they also sold pretty little jars and the small metal tins that would work well too…look in the wedding favors section is a store or online would probably be the best place.

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Here are a few pictures of some of the gift packages I made up. For some, I added a couple packages of tea along with a sugar stir stick. For others, I put a travel mug with a couple packs of tea, others I made into larger baskets, adding jam, or hand painted mugs or teapots.

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I almost forgot, I also drew a little “Viero family tea” logo, scanned it and printed it out to put the labels on the front, and the ingredients on the back. If you buy a pack of Avery labels, their website has free templates you can download for all of their labels -all you have to do is type in the style number.

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This post is getting really long… I will make a separate post for how to make the tea bags….also post if you would like me to post the types of tea I made with the ingredients.