Acts of Service Advent Tree

For the past few years we have used our Acts of Service Advent Tree during Christmas and I always get a lot of questions about it.

Even though this post is an oldie I still think it is worth sharing again!

This idea originally came to me while I was watching Anne Marie’s Twig Tree video in Home for the Holidays.

She was creating a small twig tree to hang on the wall and I knew right away that I wanted to make it big and hang acts of service off of it.

We sat down as a family and we started brainstorming things we could do as a family.

I typed all of the acts up in Word and printed them out.

We cut the acts of service into strips and folded them over to get them ready to stuff into the stars.

Our stars are made from craft paper using a star template I found online.

We (my mom) started to sew them all shut with the acts of service inside but my machine was driving her NUTS so I told her we could go with Plan B.

Always have a Plan B.

For half of the star we glued them shut with a glue stick (only getting glue around the edges to keep the glue off the acts of service) and we used a white gel pen to make thread marks on the outside.

It worked for me and possibly saved my mom’s sanity.

If you are going to hang the stars as shown …make sure that whether you sew or glue them shut that you include the end of the string in the star before you close it.

I then just randomly hung the stars on the twig tree.

I hope to do this each year as a family because

1) who needs more candy each day through December

2) who doesn’t need more times in their lives to think of others and find fun ways to show kindness

As much as I love, love, love the month of December if you are not careful it can turn into just shopping, eating too much and sugar comas.

I feel like each time we so something like this we take a huge exhale, slow down and focus.

I am thinking we will keep it up year around and have weekly acts of service.

I will let you know.

Thank you for asking about this and thank you Anne Marie for inspiring this project.


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Creatively Made Kids {upcycled bows}

We have a new video available in our free series Creatively Made Kids!

Our daughter Madolyn loves to share crafts, recipes etc. with other kids on our creative network.

We look forward to growing this aspect of our site and we welcome your children to come on over and to get creative with us.

This month Maddy is sharing how to make upcycled bows!

To watch the video you just need to be registered at (registering is free).

Once you are on the site you will find this series, free videos (business and art) and new online courses along the left hand side of the page.

You will find all of our courses/videos under the COURSES heading.

If you want to watch Creatively Made Kids:

1) Go to COURSES along the left hand side of the page

2) Click on Creatively Made Kids with Madolyn Oliver

3) Click the +join button on the upper right hand side

4) All of the details are on the page and you are all set.

Tell your friends!

We want to create an online community where you can create, connect and be inspired.

Come on over and check out the video!

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Creatively Christmas {a book, some crafting, our home and a giveaway}

Last January Jennifer Rizzo came and captured our home still decorated for the holidays.

After months of Jen writing, photographing and creating for her book I believe we were one of the last homes that she needed to photograph.

It was a fun time of working and playing during her visit and a sweet honor to be included in her first book!

I was able to see a draft of the book before it went to print and as I looked through it I had tears in my eyes for my dear friend that had created one of the most gorgeous Christmas DIY books I had ever seen.

This book is so packed full of things you can make for your home, as gifts, with your kids and friends.

When we finally had our own copy of the book in our hands Maddy and I went through picking out all of the things we wanted to make and yesterday Ben and Maddy made a few things.

I am pretty strict about following my own rule about no Christmas until after Thanksgiving but I had to break that to share this beautiful book.

The book is full of DIY decorating and gift ideas but it is also overflowing in decor photos of different homes dressed up for Christmas and the traditions of the holidays.

This book has many layers and brings you much more than crafting.

Here is a glimpse into our creating day inspired by Jen’s new book Creatively Christmas: Inspired Yuletide Decor.

Did I mention that the first printing sold out weeks ago? Yep, it’s that good:-)

I purchased two extra copies of the book to give away!

To enter just leave a comment on this post telling me one thing you love about Christmas or the holidays in general.

We will pick the winners next week.

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Summer Art Camp For Kids {and a huge art supply giveaway}

We are only have one new online course this summer and it is all for KIDS!

Summer brings with it the promise of sunshine, long, lazy days and a slower, simpler pace we’ve all been craving.

But, if you’re a mom or grandma, it might also bring with it two of the most dreaded words in the English language:

“I’m Bored.”

Enter Summer Art Camp for KIDS! An online art class for ages 5 – adult that will allow kids to cut, glue, paint, watercolor, sketch, collage, create and stretch their creative wings, all the while kicking boredom to the curb.

Author and paper artist Courtney Walsh will take kids on a guided journey through each of the five mixed media projects, encouraging students to think outside the creative box as she leads them through each step, breaking it down in a way they will easily understand and follow.

This online course is the perfect way to bond with your child, so feel free to get in on this artsy fun, save projects for rainy days or do them all in one week, the choice is up to you! Let’s have a creative summer together, shall we?

*The class will include 5 projects with art videos start to finish.

*Each course will have a supply list and templates

*There will be extra templates for boys too!


There is also a big ol’ fat giveaway of art supplies so one lucky kid will have one over flowing art supply bin!!

(Brands in the giveaway package may differ from the brands shown)

My kids and I will be putting together an awesome art supply kit that will have EVERYTHING and more that you will need to do all of the projects.

{all of the projects could be done with cardboard, basics paints, scrapbooking paper and mod podge if you are wanting to watch your money}

**To enter to win our Summer Camp For Kids! art supply giveaway (this giveaway is not for the course) please just leave a comment on this page telling us what your favorite summer activity was as a kid**

For additional chances at the giveaways you can…

* Facebook about Summer Art Camp For Kids and share this blog post

* Pin this post to Pinterest

* Share the class on Instagram and use the hashtag #jeanneolivercreativenetwork

* Blog about the course and link back to this post

* Share this post on Twitter

 Each time you share about the sale or this post please come back and let us know for additional entries.


Summer Art Camp For Kids is being hosted on my Creative Network!

1) To register for the class please go to to register on the site (this is free).

2) Once your membership is approved please go to the main page of the site and you will see all of the courses offered along the left hand side of the page under “Courses”.

If you don’t see Summer Art Camp For Kids please click the “view all” at the bottom of the courses.

3) Go to the main page of Summer Art Camp For Kids, click the +join in the upper right hand corner, pay and you are INSTANTLY in the classroom and ready for the camp to begin on June 17th.

You will find all of the content along the right hand side of the page under “Course Content”. This is where you will find your video content for the art projects (on June 17th), supply lists and teacher bio.

Tell your friends!


I would also like to announce the winners of the two subscriptions to The Artist’s Magazine!

I find creative inspiration all around me, in my daily, somewhat ho-hum life.


Nature probably inspires me most, however, taking on-line art classes always sends me to my art table! Would love a subscription to this magazine. Thanks for the opportunity to win!

If you are one of the winners please email us at and we will get you all set up:-)

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leave me a comment.

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