DIY – Earring Holder

I have a holder I picked up at Wal-Mart a while back and I was never quite happy with it, as, like many earring holders, I have to take the back off of studs to hang them up.

A shot of my old earring holder

This was annoying to me as it made it easier to lose earring backs and it seemed like more work than I was really wanting to put in. I wanted something like you would find in a jewelry box for rings.

Related image
Found via google search for ‘earring holder’

I searched for a how-to on making my own holder, but all I could find were YouTube videos, and I would have preferred to have it in picture and print format. Thus the nature of this post – fulfilling a void I saw, a picture and word how-to instead of in video format.

Let’s get started, shall we?

First up, materials …

That’s it! That’s all you need for this project. Easy peasy, right?
The box I did sand and paint first, only so it would go with my color scheme, but if you already had a painted box or drawer from a jewelry box you wanted to use, that would work just as well.
The foam curlers I found at the dollar store. Just make sure you get them all the same size, as I ended up getting two different sizes. The amount you’ll need depends on the size of your box.
The fabric I picked up from the local fabric store and it’s about a yard.
And of course, your handy dandy glue gun.

Now to the nitty-gritty part of the project, making the box.

As I mentioned above, I sanded and painted my box. If your box is good to go as is, then skip this step.
My color theme I’m working with is purple and grey (it’s the same as the rest of my house and it’s slowly working its way into the bathroom as well, and I wanted this box to fit with that scheme).

Once your happy with your box, or even before you paint, if you are going that route, you will need figure out how many rollers you’ll need exactly. It’s easier to do this before the gluing starts…
For this box (about 8 1/2 x 11 in size), I needed 5 and 1/4 going across, and 7 and 1/2 going down.
Once you know how many you need, the gluing can begin.
I started with gluing the rollers together end-to-end.

Once all my rows were glued, I measured them on the fabric to make sure it was long enough, and cut the extra as needed. I then put a row of glue at the top to hold my rollers in place. Keeping things tight, I rolled the length of the fabric until my foam rollers were covered, adding a row of glue on the edge to seal it.

When I did my box, I didn’t glue the fabric at the end of the rows, though you could if you wanted to.

Once my rows were all wrapped in fabric, I then stuffed them in the box. Yes, you do want it tight. For added strength, you can glue the rows to the bottom of the box.

And voilà! You have an earring holder! Here is mine with and without earrings so you can see how it all fits together. Now, no more taking backs off. Just slip them in the space between the rows and you’re good to go.

I designed mine to go lay or hang horizontally, but if you wanted vertical, I do believe you would get more rows, though they would be shorter in length.

This box is designed to lay flat or be propped up. To hang it, you would need to add a backing (like for a picture frame) or use some 3M strips. I can’t verify which is stronger or a better choice as I haven’t tested that theory yet. Admittedly I’d probably choose the backing, because it seems more durable to me.

Any questions, let me know. Otherwise, enjoy your new earring holder! And please share with others you think might be interested in it.



Teachers Write 7.18

So, posting my writing snippets the day after the past two days it seems. Sorry, that’s partly what happens when I post to the blog post at 10:30p as I’m crawling into bed, only then realizing I’ve been thinking about it all day but never actually posted anything.

Anyways, here is your post in response to Tuesday’s Quick Write. The author Loree Griffin Burns shared how she gets in the moment to help her writing out (for example, when writing about bees, she actually visited a bee hive.

Our task for the day was to put ourselves in a scenario, then describe it to you, the reader. My husband and I went for a bike ride (our longest to date, but not for long as I am already planning another one that has been on my radar the past year or two). Below you have a snippet into my brain the last mile of our ride …

“Yes, half a mile left,” I call to my husband behind me. I am so ready for this ride to be over. I raise my self slightly on my right peddle, giving my sore, almost tingling rear a break. Oh, not much of one as there’s another hill. “Come on, you can do it,” I tell myself, giving myself a pep talk as my legs struggle to climb the hill. I turn the knob on my gear shift. Click. The gears shift, giving my legs a slight reprieve that final hill, then it’s smooth sailing on flat land the rest of the way. Finally we make it back to the car. “Oh,” I groan as I slowly slide off my seat, my feet touching the pavement. Boy can I feel those 29 miles we just biked.

Teachers Write 7.17

Over on Jo’s blog for Monday, she talked on the topic of character development and asked us to complete these sentences. I actually have a new story forming in my head that hasn’t actually been started, so I’m going to use that character in these sentences, as it will help me learn about her more before I start writing… (my answers are underlined).

I wish Kylie could just break through the demands and be free.

Kylie have never told anyone this, but she’d love to quit her day job and be a cheerleader for a professional sports team.

If Kylie had the guts to tell Mr. Taylor that she wanted to stop, I just know that he’d be disappointed, but would ultimately end their deal.

The only one who really understands Kylie is her best friend Harriet and that’s because she was the one that got Kylie her night job.

Teachers Write 7.13

Today we had the guest author Hena Khan and we were asked to think about our name if we could go back to before our birth and change it, and to create a mini-biography with our new name.

Current name

In regards to my own name, I think I’ve always secretly wished I could change it, but at the same time enjoyed it at the same time. I think the reason I wanted to change it was because there was at least one other Stephanie in most of my classes, so I was never sure which one the teacher was calling on. I remember back in high school I knew at least four other Stephanie’s, and a few Stephan’s, and we had decided one day at lunch that we were going to take over the world and only Stephanie’s and Stephan’s would be allowed to live. Honestly, if I changed it, it would probably be the spelling, to make it more unique.

New name

For the purpose of this writing prompt, I chose another name in my head that I would have changed my name to … “Lanetta”. The reason is that when my parents first found they were pregnant, they were told they were having twins. I’m not sure the names if they were boys, but if they were girls, the names they picked were “Lanetta Marie” and “Janetta Nicole”. (Now, I don’t know if that’s how the names actually played out or if the middle names were switched, but it’s what my memory is telling me.) Unfortunately she miscarried, so it’s just me. So this my brief summary of “Lanetta”, imagined as if I was a twin …

Think you’re seeing double? Then you’re probably right, cause I’m a twin! My name is Lanetta and I’m the oldest (okay, it’s only by a few minutes, but hey, it’s the thought that counts, right?). Now, my twin and I may look alike at first glance, but we’ve gotten out of that ‘dress-alike’ stage back in elementary, so it’s a little easier to tell us apart now. Oh, and our personality is totally different. I’m the more out-spoken, friendly one, while my sister is the quiet, shy one. Maybe it’s cause I was born first I felt the need to take charge. Oh, and that whole twin-telepathy thing people always ask about? Yeah, we so have it. I always get a six-sense when my sister is feeling down. Of course, it may be because we spend so much time together. Yeah, it may be because we grew up together, but I think that only helped strengthen our bond. It’s like the saying the girls have on that Disney show “Liv and Maddie” – Sisters by chance, friends by choice.

Teachers Write 7.10 & 7.11

This summer I decided to participate in Teachers Write. It’s hosted by authors Kate Messner, Gae Polisner, Jo Knowles, blogger/educator Jen Vincent, and guest authors popping in from time to time. I joined because its designed for teachers, librarians, and other folks who work with kids who also like to write and want to learn to improve their writing.

I’ve recently (within the last few years) picked up writing, including participating in NaNoWriMo a few times (though I’ve never written a novel-length during it). I’ve completed one novel-size story officially (don’t bother looking for it in stores though as I’m not planning on publishing at this point); the rest falls under the short-story category in length.

Anyways, up to this point there’s only been one person who’s really read my writing. But as Gae and Nora Raleigh Baskin pointed out in their joint blog post last Friday, the process of writing is not complete until someone reads it.

Hmm. Makes sense. So, with that statement, I’ve decided that as a first time Teachers Write participant, I was going right off the deep end and was going to participate full-on. That means sharing my writing from the beginning. And to be honest, it’s a scary idea, not knowing how people are going to respond. But here I am, sharing another part of my life and soul with the world. Just one request – please don’t hurt it too bad.

So, the plan is to share my small bits of writing that correspond with the various lessons. Ideally I’d be doing this daily, but being realistic, I will at least shoot for once a week. Feel free to let me know what you think and some constructive criticisms that can help improve my writing or the scene.

For starters, you have my small blurbs from Monday and Tuesday… Enjoy!

Mini-Lesson Monday: Another View of the World:

Taylor stepped outside the building she had been in for the last several hours and closed her eyes, taking in the smell and sounds around her; the salty air of the ocean blowing against her face, the horn of a nearby ship getting ready to take sail, the cry of a young child who was too scared to board the large ship, the seagulls trying to find scraps for food among the crowds, the hot humidity of a Florida summer day against her skin. She opened her eyes and brought her camera up to capture the huge boat in front of her, her home for the next several days.

Tuesday Quick-Write with Phil Bildner:

Two different perspectives —

“Only one row left of classrooms to clean. Good thing the kids will be gone Thursday. Man, I hope those two girls won’t come sneaking around and ask their questions and just let me do my job,” the custodian thought as he started to clean the first classroom of the day.

“It’s f-ing summer. Why do I have to be at school?” Angelique thought as she walked down the street. “Who cares if I learn to read? I don’t even like reading. Seriously? They make us go to school during the school year and then take away our summer too? God! I just want to be in bed.” When she got to the bus stop, she pulled her phone from her back pocket and scrolled through facebook until the bus pulled up. The bus hissed as it came to a stop and when the doors opened, Angelique climbed on taking a quick scan of the kids on board, chose to sit next to Nataly.

“So, you think Juan’s going to show up?” Nataly asked as Angelique sat next to her.

“Don’t know. He sent me a snapchat last night,” Angelique replied, pulling the app up on her phone to show her the pic of him with the dog filter. The girls laughed at the sight before lifting the phone in front of them for a selfie.

3 Books by Brian Selznick

One of the categories in the “Reading for Growth” of Modern Mrs. Darcy’s 2017 challenge is to read “three books by the same author”. I had previously read The Invention of Hugo Cabret and The Marvels and enjoyed both books immensly, so Brian immediately popped in my head as I knew he had written one more in a similar style. Upon researching what else he wrote, I saw that he wrote (and illustrated) two other books the public library had in circulation, so I checked them out. Below are the three books I read by him.

I think the things that strike me the most of interest is after reading his books are: 1) I love his pencil drawings. It’s amazing that such a simple tool can create such a cool drawing. 2) I’m a fan of his part picture, part words style of writing. Yes, picking up a 400+ page book seems a daunting read. But when you look closer and it feels that half those pages are pictures just when you thumb through the book? Doesn’t seem so daunting now. 3) This is probably something that would explain other picture books, but wow! A picture really does say a thousand words! As someone who works with kids, I’m finding myself drawn to books that are told with no words, only pictures. I think it takes talent to tell a story with just a picture, and Brian seems to take that to the next level with his style of telling a wordless story, a word story, and combining the two together in the end.

Without further ado, the books …

The Boy of a Thousand FacesThis one seemed like it could be on the scary end and not one I would normally go to (If you know me, you know I don’t do scary or horror – even in book form I avoid it). I think the only reason I read it was for this challenge. However, I liked the concept of the challenge the boy created for himself. Similar to a photo-a-day challenge, or a selfie-a-day challenge that I’ve seen.

The Houdini Box – If you aren’t familiar with Harry Houdini, he is a famous magician. This story is about a boy who is fascinated with magic and gets the chance to learn a secret from the master, but unfortunately receives a box instead. The boy leaves the box closed and forgets about magic. But by a small chance, years later, his former passion is revised and when he finally opens that box, a childhood answer was revealed.

Wonderstruck – This book features two characters who are deaf, trying to find where they belong, both ultimately finding the answer in New York City.

NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity

After being on my “to-read” list for over a year, I have finally read NeuroTribes. As stated below, my husband first heard about the book while reading science articles about Autism. (He is at the present moment un-diagnosed with the spectrum disorder.) He checked the book out from the public library and enjoying it himself, purchased it from Amazon for family to read. My mother-in-law read it first, and now I can say I have finally done so.

It took me a while to actually start the book for several reasons. 1) One, it is a non-fiction book, talking about the history of Autism, and I’m generally not a fan of non-fiction, usually finding them a bit of a dry read. That was true for this one as well, but as the history lesson came into more modern times, it did pick up a bit. 2) Secondly, the size was a bit daunting, the book being about 480 pages. Granted I have read longer books (Harry Potter series for example), but as already stated, non-fiction books are a bit dry and take longer for me to consume, probably because I’m not as absorbed in the pages.

This book does fit the reading challenge I’m completing by “Modern Mrs. Darcy”. I’m putting this under the label “a book you were excited to buy or borrow but haven’t read yet” because having a husband on the spectrum does make me want to learn more about it so that I can better understand him better, and it is something that I will willingly pass on to anyone who would like to learn more about Autism themselves.


NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of NeurodiversityNeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity by Steve Silberman

It took me a while to finally get started on this book, as the size seemed a bit daunting, and I’m normally not a non-fiction fan, but after hubby and my mother-in-law read it, I figured it was finally time.

Hubby first discovered the book through science articles about Autism. Being un-diagnosed himself, hubby has immersed himself in research to find out more about Autism spectrum and if it fits him.

This book talks about the history of Autism spectrum including the two gentlemen who coined the terms we know now, Hans Asperger (from Austria, 1938, used the term autistic psychopaths) and Leo Kanner (from the US, 1943, first labeled as early infantile autism), and the start of organizations that helped define the disorder as we know it today. It also talks about the future of Autism as seen in several movements, both of those looking for a “cure” and those looking for “acceptance”.

If you or a loved one is on the spectrum or you think they might be, I highly recommend this book. I think even those not on the spectrum will see themselves in the characteristics of Autism spectrum somewhere.