Automate My Life

I am not what someone would call an early adopter; however, I do love the opportunity to automate my life. As someone who likes things to stay on track one of the first things I purchased for my home were Lifx LED bulbs. I loved that I could control my lights by clicking on an application on my phone and then proceed to set up schedules, color schemes and even have my lights flicker to the beat of music. My favorite feature I can command my lights to turn on and off with my Echo dot. I never have to walk into a dark room again. Coming home these days to a nicely lit house was comforting and convenient. One of the very best features of my Lifx lights is that I no longer have to wake up to an alarm. My job hours require me to rise before dawn, these days, I set up my Lifx lights to turn on and slowly brighten until they reach 100% which is about a 15 minute process. By the time, the room is fully lit at 100%, I have woken up and I am ready to do what I need to do to get to work. It is so much less painful than pressing snooze until I have to get up. This process results in my body feeling at ease to get up that when I leave the house, it is a bit shocking to see the world outside still dark. It works so well, I am never late anymore and that is something that I could not say when the snooze button used. The no hub and easy set up has successfully kept me using Lifx instead of other brands. It’s lux, but I am so worth it.

Lifx (A19) Multi-Color No Hub Required

Amazon Echo Dot

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That Party You Always Go To

As someone who has planned both professionally and personally, I’ve learned even within my own family there are two types of planners. I am the look to the details, create the concept and implement type and the fly-by-your-seat-pants type that hits a Party City or Amazon orders what they think they need, while leaving the the final purchases of food, etc… to the day of. Depending on what you want, either method could be fun. My method when combined with the other, resulted in a truly memorable and copied event.

My niece was turning 11 and her birthday party would be the first of the year. She was excited and told me her selected theme was “Hollywood Glamour.” As a trend observer, I checked in with her parents and got permission to set up photo shoots for the event. My goal was to photograph and then distribute the images to the parents in person or in the kids goody bags. The pluses I had in my favor were that the kids were dressed up to match the theme, parents love a cute photo and my cell phone could easily create and crop a good photo. The first shoot was hands in cement. My version involved a nicely sized square box, and a whole lot of play dough. Each guest would put their hands in the play dough make an impression, than sign their name in the play dough and pose. My second photo shoot was Star Walk of Fame shoot that had participants write their names on a dry erase walk of fame star look alike and pose with it. Once the photos were taken, I made sure to print them out on 4×6 photo paper and they got passed out. At photo distribution time, I underestimated how pleased the parents were. The concept didn’t just prove to be great, it set the tone for other parties that year and set a new bar.

People always remember a good party and photos are a key component to capping off a special event.   So, my wisdom for this post is, if you are looking to pull off something special, add a special detail, or component to your event. It could be a cute edible party favor or a photo backdrop setup or sparklers vs candles on a cake and implement it. It could be that special component that makes your events, the ones everyone remembers and everyone attends.

Miniature Hersheys Candy Bar Wrappers

These are another edible that I usually customize with a special custom wrapper. This one is much smaller and easier to do. Similar to the Full-size Hershey wrappers, in a previous post, this one uses Microsoft Word as my editing application. I have attached word template and pdf template for those  who want to try out this project.

  1. Package of Hersheys Miniature Candy Bars
  2. Scor Tape 1/8″ 1 Pack 1/8″ 2 Pack  1/4″ 1 Pack 1/2″ 1 Pack Multi-Pack 1/8, 1/4, 1/2 – 1 of each
  3. White, Pearl or Silver paper 8 1/2 x 11. White  Pearl  Silver
  4. Scissors
  5. Scissor sharpener, This Fiskars gadget has saved all my scissors from being dull, it is optional but works so well. I can never do without it.
  6. Access to computer with Word and internet access.
  7. Access to Ink jet printer.

Steps

  1. Download and open the word file.
  2. The file will have a completed mini wrapper in the upper left-hand corner of the page.
    NOTE: Do not delete the border of the wrapper. It is the exact size needed to cover the miniature candy bar being wrapped.
  3. Select the wording, fonts, and images.
  4. Go ahead and add them in, size so they are really close to the originals on the template.
  5. Select each new text box or image you added in and send to back.
  6. Select the template and right click on it.
  7. When the menu comes up look for the word ungroup and that will show you the template has three items grouped together.
  8. Proceed to select the items you do not need and delete them.
  9. Select the border, text box and image, right click and select group.
  10. If all objects grouped together, the wrapper can be selected as one object and copied multiple times on the page. This will be handy if you bought the big bad of Hershey’s miniatures.
  11. After you copied as many mini labels to fit the page, print one page on normal copy paper.
  12. Cut one label out.
  13. Grab a miniature bar and put the label around it making sure it has Scor tape.
  14. Remove Scor tape release paper and attach the label. If it looks good, you are all set to print in your white metallic paper. Just in case, if you are using an hp after printing, let labels dry overnight. I used them immediately and some of mine smudged.

Try out this project, it’s a nice touch for many events. Plus the miniature bars are appealing for most guests unless the have nut allergies. Video to follow.

If you have any issues, reach out by comment. I’ll be happy to help.

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Full size Candy Wrappers Hershey’s Candy Bars

I usually do this project when my family encounters a milestone event. This means a religious ceremony, major birthday, graduation, etc… For this project, I created a template that can be printed on an inkjet or laser printer. Usually I create a design for both sides of the bar. Using color coordinating aluminum foil to wrap the existing bar leaving the original wrapper in place. This is one of favorite crafts to do since I am a bit of a computer geek. Since this is my very first post, I have attached a pdf and word file as template for your use. Hershey Wrappers Hershey Wrappers PDF

Supplies  (To follow the links, but not leave the web page, highlight the link and right click and select “Open link in new Tab.”)

  1. Box of bars Milk Chocolate with Almonds Milk Chocolate Only
  2. Foil Candy Wrappers. In every instance, I decided I wanted to do a color match to my wrapper. So I got a foil wrapper to go over the one the bar already has. This link is for blue wrappers, however; they  have many colors to choose from.  Silver Gold Sage Green Emerald Green Light Blue Dark Blue Red Lavender Purple Fuschia Pink
  3. Scor Tape 1/8″ 1 Pack 1/8″ 2 Pack  1/4″ 1 Pack 1/2″ 1 Pack Multi-Pack 1/8, 1/4, 1/2 – 1 of each
  4. White, Pearl or Silver paper 8 1/2 x 11. White  Pearl  Silver
  5. Scissors
  6. Scissor sharpener, This Fiskars gadget has saved all my scissors from being dull, it is optional but works so well. I can never do without it.
  7. Access to Laser or  Ink jet printer.
  8. If I choose to foil the labels, Decofoil.
  9. Images or Logos to add to labels

Detailed steps below, video to follow shortly.

  1. Get some sheets of paper – ok to re-use some that have printing on one side, these will be for your test runs.
  2. If you have not bought the boxes of hersheys bars yet, go to your local store and get a single bar of the one you prefer.
  3. Open the word file, the template is already set up and has text you can easily customize and color to fit your needs. There are two version in the template, if you prefer to use one over the other, feel free to go ahead and delete the template for the bar you do not want.
    NOTE: The fonts I used are standard on word as of 2016; however, you may not find them on your computer if it is older. In that case, if you don’t have it, you have the option to change it with one you do have on your system, or look for it on the web. I found Great Vibes for my other older computer for free when I looked. Caution: Make sure you have malware and your computer has anti-virus software like McAfee, Norton, etc… installed and up-to-date to protect it.
  4. While editing the file, do not delete any existing graphics, they may help you with placing the new graphics you want to add. Once you have placed the new graphic in the spot you want, delete the old one and you should be good to go.
  5. Once you have the wrapper looking the way you want, go ahead and print the file on your laser or inkjet printer.
  6. Grab the candy bar, make sure that it is wrapped in the foil color. Before I wrap the bar, I use my scor tape and tape down the flaps on the side.
    NOTE: Make sure to press down hard or scratch down on the scor tape to ensure adhesion to the flaps. This is also important when placing the wrapper on the bar.
  7. I put the wrapper down non color side up so it looks like a diamond.
  8. I place the bar in the center
  9. Using my scor tape, put tape on the one edge on the left.
  10. I proceed to the right and also add scor tape to one edge on the right.
  11. I pull the release paper from the scor tape on the left and gently lift the color wrapper and press down onto the bar.
  12. I do the same step again on the right.
  13. Once I see that the sides of the wrapper, I lift the bottom of the wrapper and pull it toward the top. You can add scor tape here but I never do and it works just fine.
  14. On the top, I look at the wrapper and fold the  top of it to create a color triangle at the top.
  15. Near the edge of the fold, I add one more piece of scor tape. Then pull the release paper and fold the top of the wrapper down.
  16. Grab you scissor and print out, cut the wrapper you just printed.
  17. Wrap it around the bar to see how it looks. The template is set up that if someone flips the bar from right to left the next side will have wording that is not upside down.
  18. If you love how the wrapper looks, proceed to group the text boxes, graphics and the label. If you only have one label on the page, you may be able to successfully print two, by copying the first label. If the entire label is grouped it is really easy to move with your arrow keys when you paste it.

If you have any trouble, please feel free to comment on this post. I will be happy to respond and assist if I can.

Cio by Design is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Hello world!

Thank you for visiting Cio by Design. Through this blog, guests are given the opportunity to leverage DIY tutorials, get to know various wellness professionals, and when possible, I hope to sprinkle a little wisdom here and there that I hope will be useful to you. Please feel free to explore, comment and suggest what you may want to see in the future.