Sunday, October 29, 2006

Suck It Martha!

Compliments to Penny K for today's post title.

As most of you know, it's going to be a lean Christmas here at Bezzie Manor. Every year I make the grandmas a custom Chunky-Calendar. It all started when I got suckered into buying one of those $25 custom Kinko calendars back in 2003 for a daycare fundraiser. Now my mom whines about getting one each year.

I love my mother, but no freaking way am I shelling out $25 for a calendar with my kid on it every year.

As a result of my stinginess, I've had to get creative. I made 2004's and tried to bind it using a hole punch and some kind of keychain contraption. Yes, that was a disaster, but since it had Chunky featured my mom didn't care--or at least she said she didn't care! 2005 was the same deal.

Finally, by 2006 I got smart and bought some of those blank calendars you can find in scrapbook stores. But dear mother of Fatzah, it got so boring making 24 scrapbook pages for the year. (One calendar for each grandma.)

This year I believe I've finally found the answer.

First off, I have to give credit to some children's hospital in San Antonio. They gave the girl who had my job before me (interestingly enough also named Martha now that I think about it) a little CD case calendar. I've seen these in calendar/Christmas card catalogues as well. Very cute, but again, very expensive for what you get.

So I decided to create my own! Behold!

Step 1.
Find a funkalicous CD case you don't want anymore. Make sure it's a fat CD case--not one of those skinny ones you get with blank CDs. Thanks to Darbyrose for swapping me a pattern for these fat CD cases!

CD Case

Step 2.
Pull the CD and paper junk out. Save the paper junk. You'll use this as a template to cut out your picture later. Measure how big the paper is. Mine was approximately 5" in height by 4.75" in width. You can save the CD too if you like. Lord knows you can make all types of crafty stuff out of those too.

Pulling Out CD

Step 3.
Using a small screwdriver, or even a butterknife, run the edge of the sharp object around the black CD holder stuck to the back of the CD case. Do this gently as you don't want any of the plastic to break.

Pry other crap out

Step 4.
Now that you have the CD holder thingy free, pull the back paper out. Feel free to discard this stuff. Or again save it to give to your plastic squirrel lawn ornaments to build a plastic nest out of. Whatever flips your cookie.

ta da

Step 5.
Gently separate the two sides of the CD case. They should be attached with a peg and hole type mechanism.

Separate two sides

Step 6.
Flip the front part of the CD case over, and reattach it to the back of the CD case again utilizing the pegs and holes on either side. When you flip it open, it should stay propped up like this:


Step 7.
Here's where it gets tricky if you're doing a calendar. Using a photoshop program cut and paste a calendar and picture of your chosing onto a canvas size that's going to fit your CD case. I found some blank calendars here for personal, non-sale use.

Step 8.
Print out your first calendar month. Using the insert from the original CD that was in the case oringially as a template, cut out around the image. I did this one on plain paper, but I'll probaby do each month of the final calendar on cardstock. Slip the month into the little holders that held the original cover of the CD case to secure it. For each additional month, slide them behind the month you want to display, and as the new month comes up just rotate them.

Finished product

This would also work as a cheap-o picture frame if you were so inclined. You could take it a step further and decorate the sides of the frame with a little somthin' somethin' too if you were feeling ambitious.

These will make my mom flip and will look great on the desk shrine my mother in law keeps with all her grandkids' pictures on it at work. Even better is they're lightweight and will cost nearly nothing to ship to Alaska! Not to mention all I have to do is hit "print" twice instead of spending hours scrapbooking January through December!


Blogger Sherry W said...

AWSOME! I bow to your recycling. I'm going to make one for me kid! (cat).

If you ever need those cd thingas again, I sometimes have tons of them. I just gave a batcha way, but I can hoard them for you if you have a use.

10:08 PM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

That is really cool. I'm impressed.

I always think I should make my mom a calendar with pics of the kids, but in reality, I never get around to it. And my parents prefer to ignore Christmas, which helps.

There's a house here that made outdoor Christmas light reflectors from old CDs. Probably AOL offers. Anyhow, they put one behind each bulb in the string and run it along the front gutter of their house. I'm not sure what I think of the effect, but I applaud their resourcefulness.

10:32 PM  
Blogger cpurl17 said...

You are so freakin' talented! We need to get you your own craft TV show. That calendar is so clever!

11:22 PM  
Anonymous Knit Mongrel said...

Dude. Brilliant. So now when my mother asks where her Christmas socks are I can casually hand her one of these calenders and say, "Don't you love my new shawl? No, no - I didn't make it. It's from Sears, I swear."

LOVE the idea. Thanks. :)

1:20 AM  
Blogger Linnea said...

Sweet! Martha Stewart, eat your heart out...

By the way, I think that CD wants to be a spindle.

5:28 AM  
Blogger Tactless Wonder said...

Were we having one of those out of body brain moments? I just "flipped a cd case" to make quick picture frame last night when company threatened to show and the place was less than say the least.

PS: hope your car feels better soon. I do know, all too well now, what it feels like to drive gingerly with a damaged's a bit stressful.

7:56 AM  
Anonymous Amby said...

You never cease to amaze me with your creativity...I think you should write a book about fun inexpensive crafty projects and title it "Suck it Martha!" I would totally buy it and stand in line to have you autograph it...

8:16 AM  
Blogger Carol said...

Flips your cookie! hee hee!

9:02 AM  
Blogger Karen said...

Hmmmm....I'm going to have to show this to hubby.....we were going to make calendars for the Grandmas again this year. I know MY side of the family would go for it...his side.....well, they're special. :)

You're awesome Bezzie!

9:39 AM  
Blogger Cheesy Knit Wit said...

That is a great idea Bezzie!

11:10 AM  
Blogger sgeddes said...

That is a great idea! I think it turned out great!

12:16 PM  
Blogger Zonda said...

That is awesome girl!! It is too cute and you are so inventive! :)

12:38 PM  
Anonymous Kristin said...

What an awesome idea!

1:07 PM  
Blogger Rain said...

That is such a fantastic idea. I think it's wonderful that you make things and am sure it will be loved by the grandmothers.

2:43 PM  
Blogger Starfish said...

I am all over that idea when the baby comes. My MIL is gonna freaking LOVE IT.

9:02 PM  
Blogger turtlegirl76 said...

Brilliant! You never cease to amaze me. Wonderful. I may just have to try this out.

10:17 AM  
Blogger weezalana said...

That is great! Yeah, Martha who? And Rachel Ray can suck it, too. :D

11:26 AM  
Blogger mf said...

How cleaver! What a great idea! Thanks for sharing! ;o)

6:28 PM  

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