DIY Magnets + Giveaway!


I had half-heartedly tossed out the idea of doing some simple DIY projects and here I am, actually following through! I also have a giveaway and a story at the bottom of the post if you’re interested. Anyway, many moons ago, I got this idea to make magnets and in my enthusiasm, I ordered a bunch of supplies. I probably don’t need to elaborate that my magnet-making scheme didn’t pan out so well, and now I have quite the surplus taking up room in my basement.


So, just in time for the holidays, I thought I’d create a little tutorial for making your own magnets. Actually, “tutorial” seems to be a rather overblown description of what I’m offering, since I’m sure anyone can figure out how to do this. However, here’s a list of materials and a visual step-by-step:


1. Materials/Supplies:

– E6000 glue, magnets (I used 3/4 inch or 19mm size, similar available here)
– Glass or plastic cabochons (I got my plastic ones from here)
– Decorative paper or fabric.
– The metal case is just a cute packaging idea for the magnets (you can find similar here and here – I can’t remember where I got mine from).
– Disposable gloves (not pictured)

2. Either trace the magnet onto decorative paper or fabric and cut out, or use a circular punch. I happened to have a 5/8-inch size punch but a 3/4-inch one would have worked great too as it would have been the same size as my magnet. I would suggest using thicker paper and fabric as the glue may bleed through and sometimes blur the design if the paper/fabric is too thin. I wrote the letters onto card stock, and I didn’t mind how the ink smudged a bit. I’ve also used photos minimized and printed on photo paper for these and they look fantastic.

3. Place a very small amount of the glue onto the magnet and adhere the paper/fabric. Make sure you are working in a well-ventilated area. This glue can make you feel light-headed, and it’s also a good idea to wear disposable gloves.

4. Place another small drop of the glue on top of the paper/fabric. You’ll need to work quickly here.

5. Press down firmly onto the cabochon to get the air bubbles out. You might also need to wipe some excess glue off of the sides. Try to spread out the glue evenly while pressing down. Let dry 24 hours.


And that’s it!

Because I have quite a few extra, and in the spirit of Thanksgiving and general giving, I thought it would be fun to do a giveaway. I have five “kits” that include 8 magnets, 8 cabochons and a metal tin. The giveaway is open to one and all (that includes you international folks). This means FIVE winners.

Before I ask you my usual giveaway question, I want to tell you a story first. When I was 19, I got into a massive car accident. It was the day after Thanksgiving, and I was driving down the 405 freeway in Los Angeles, on my way to meet my best friend. It was raining — not too hard, but it was a steady, rhythmic patter. No one knows how to drive in the rain in LA, and that clearly included me that frightening day so many years ago. What I remember is that a white car suddenly nosed its way into my lane, inches from colliding into me. I panicked and swerved, but because of the rain, the road was excessively slick. My car spun out of control. I was FACING oncoming traffic, blinded by all the headlights. Continuing to panic, I recklessly turned my car again, and this time I fishtailed off to the side of the freeway and crashed. I felt my head and body ricochet, and I could see that I had flattened the front of my car against the off ramp wall. I dizzily turned my head and saw two other cars silhouetted in the rain, right next to mine. I started crying and heaving, trying to remember how I had hit two cars. I was afraid to move, though at that point, I wasn’t sure that I could. I watched with dread as one of the car’s door opened and a man stepped out. Then another man from the other car sprinted out.

I was thoroughly confused as one man bent down to place small objects on the ground. The other man rushed over to my side of the car and knocked. I was still immobile so he tried the door and it was open. Out of the corner of my eyes, I could finally see that the small objects were flares, and this man looming above me was holding out a blocky, rectangular, calculator-looking thing. Back in those days, not many people had cell phones (I’m old, people) so I didn’t know what it was at first. I found that I could move my limbs, but had no clue how to use the phone so the man dialed my best friend for me and explained the situation to her. When he handed the early-model cell phone to me, all I could do was keen like an animal into the receiver and my friend dashed out in her pajamas to come get me.

I hadn’t hit the cars. They had stopped out of kindness, protecting me and shoring up much needed help. I totaled my car, and logically, I shouldn’t have survived the accident. The men told me that they saw how I turned a full 360 degrees on the freeway and couldn’t believe I was alive and that I managed to avoid hitting any cars. I didn’t touch a steering wheel again for nearly a year and I still hate to drive. And every Thanksgiving, I remember those men, and their acts of selfless giving, and I am beyond grateful. Because without the bright blanket of flares, without the connection that the rare cell phone provided, I probably wouldn’t have lasted that night. Where would I have gone? What would I have done? It was, by every definition of the word, a miracle.

So my question is this: is there a memorable act of kindness in your life? It can be the smallest of small: perhaps an understanding pat from your child when you were feeling particularly sad or an unexpected compliment from a stranger. Or the grandest of grand: a windfall of epic proportions, an unforgettable soiree thrown in your honor. Anything.

The giveaway will be open until next Friday, December 6th. Good luck!

9 thoughts on “DIY Magnets + Giveaway!

  1. My moment , or many moments over the course of a weekend started off at my young cousin’s Bat Mitzvah. I accompanied my Grandmother to represent our side of the family, and obviously knew no one but the immediate family of my young cousin. Now, I come from a very large and loud family, but other people’s large families are a different thing all together! After the service had wrapped up, I rushed to the restroom and as I waited the sea of people cleared and there stood Marilyn. Great Aunt Marilyn whom I had never heard of was to be my miracle of comfort all weekend. Great Aunt Marilyn was the tiniest “little person” I’d ever seen. Marilyn kept me at her side regaling me with stories of her life in Chicago when she was in her early 20’s. She had me drinking Old Fashions, told me what a smart young lady I was, told me how beautiful I was, and basically made me feel completely comfortable and loved within this family I did not know. I will forever be thankful for Marilyn and her humor and compassion for a young woman with deer in the headlights eyes!

  2. I have had so many acts of kindness on my behalf (usually from my husband). But since you mentioned accidents on CA freeways I will tell my story. I was coming back from a trip to Mexico (I helped in an orphanage there) and had stopped in the Bay area. There a friend and her sister were driving another gal and I back to the airport to fly to WA (that makes 5 in the car). It wasn’t raining but a similar thing happened the gal driving went to switch lanes and realized suddenly there was a car next to her. She swerved to avoid the car and we started spinning. Ultimately ending up facing traffic in the middle of the five lane freeway (that had a few minutes before seemed very busy). Miraculously, the Lord protected us and no one hit us as we pulled carefully forward and got off the road. I had been in the middle of the back seat (a four seater car). Before we did anything one of the girls prayed to thank the Lord and said, “thank you especially that Kristi is OK since she’s not wearing a seat belt). Had not occurred to me yet. But even in all that I hadn’t moved from my unseatbelted postion. It was a miracle. And we still made our plane!

  3. I had an experience with giving and receiving kindness last year when I was walking my dog in the forest. We met a man whose dog had been attacked by other dogs and was injured and bleeding. I accompanied him to the next road where I helped him call a taxi to the vet since my car was parked too far away. He did not have any money so I gave him what I had which was only a 50,00€ bill. He gave me his cell phone number so I could contact him. Unfortunately he gave me a wrong number in all his confusion. So I just let it go and gave up on the money…. A few day later in the forest I noticed posters pinned to the trees searching for the “helping angel”! I could not believe this! I contacted him and he returned my money. A few days later I had a huge bouquet of beautiful roses deliverd to me as a thank you! I was overwhelmed and very happy 🙂
    What a great question, Sanae! Thank you!

  4. After a most frustrating visit to the fabric store last week, in which I abandoned the notion of actually accomplishing the task I was there to do, I stood in a somewhat long line while my kids (ages 4 1/2, 3 and 1) grated on my nerves and exhausted me to the bone. After several nights of bad sleep, it was against my better judgement that i went to the store in the first place. So, I paid for my spool of thread and pack of hot glue sticks (about 1/5 of my shopping list and the only things that didn’t require making a decision). as I finished paying and headed to the exit, another woman at the checkout counter caught my attention and said, “You’re doing a good job, Mama”. I cried as I walked to my car. I almost cry as I type this. As a mom of small children, I have days like everyone else when my kids act horribly in public. I know what i have thought of those moms when I have seen them dealing with bratty kids in the aisle. But I don’t know the whole story. The looks I have received from other women confirm that it’s easy to pass judgement on a mom who “can’t control her children”. In my situation, my kids were having a bad day; I was having a bad day. This woman saw that. Her comment told me that she saw that I was having a bad day, but that she assumed it wasn’t the norm. She assumed that we were tired and irritable. Through her generosity of going out of her way to encourage me, she communicated love and understanding toward me. Understanding that I was doing my best and that I was a good mom despite an off day. I am so thankful for her kindness.

  5. So glad you survived!!! I hate to drive too. Something about having the lives of my family so thoroughly in my hands makes me squirm. I know each time that if I make a tiny mistake they will be the ones who are hurt. But on to brighter stuff, you were fine yay!!!

    Thanks for sharing. I hope the men are out there somewhere feeling your thankful vibes 🙂

  6. Much to the dismay of my parents, a year after graduating college, I quit my job on Wall St (which I hated) and decided to waitress while I decided what to do with my life. After a couple of years, I’m sure my parents were convinced I was never going to get it together. Anyhow, this particular year I promised my family that I would make it Christmas Eve at my uncle’s house in NJ, which was about a three hour drive away from where I lived in Amagansett. I had to borrow my boyfriend’s brand new car because my ancient piece of junk broke down a couple of days earlier and I got a late start because I got hung up at my waitressing job. I had been feeling really depressed and I felt like I had let my parents down in so many ways, that this trip began to symbolize a new beginning for me. So, running late on a really snowy and windy Christmas Eve, driving someone else’s nice car, of course I hit traffic and more traffic and then, when I finally got to the Verrazano Bridge, I headed up the ramp and felt like something was wrong with the car. By the top of the bridge, I knew I couldn’t keep driving and had to stop. The bridge was bouncing and swaying in the wind and cars were flying past my car, honking their horns and swerving around me when they came up in my lane. And, of course my cellphone was not getting any signal. I had to get out of the car to use one of the emergency phones on the bridge and I knew at that point there was no way I was going to make it to my uncle’s house. The man told me to get back in the car and wait for the tow truck (as if i was going to hang out on the bridge and enjoy the scenery!) When the tow truck pulled up behind me, I started crying with relief and the guy came around to see what was wrong with the car. I told him I needed a tow to the nearest mechanic and he said like a typical New Yorker, “what are you crazy?! They’re going to charge you an arm and a leg and good luck finding an open shop tonight! It’s just a flat! You got a spare?” I had no idea and told him it wasn’t my car. So he said “Just pop the trunk, I’ll change it right here.” He ignored my plea to just tow me off the bridge and in my opinion, then and now, risked his life changing a tire for a stranger on Christmas Eve on the top of the Verrazano. When he finished, I asked him how much I owed him, and I would have paid anything, he said “no charge, you get home safe ,now.” I tried to give him the only cash I had, $50 I was planning on giving to my brother for Christmas, and he refused to take it. I cried the rest of the ride to my uncle’s house, and promised myself I would get it together. And I did, I applied to grad school that winter and started the next semester. I always think of that guy on Christmas and it always makes me cry. I am so thankful for him and i think my parents are too!

  7. Just found your blog this week and I really enjoy it.
    When I think of acts of kindness, I think of my husband. As a new mother of twins, the first yearws very hard. We didn’t have any help and it was very intense for both of us. But he would send me out for go get a latte and sit and enjoy it was so priceless in those days. Our boys are almost 2 and it’s less intense but parenting is challenging. He still sends me out, brings me flowers, and thanks me for being a mother all the time.

  8. My act of kindness comes from my then four year old daughter. I was having one of my crying days – one of those days where I was crying endlessly for no apparent reason. As I was feeding her eight month old sister my for that old moved the baby so that she could get past. I shouted at her ‘what on earth do you think that you’re doing? Just leave your sister alone! ‘ to which she responded ‘I just wanted to give you a kiss and a hug because you’re sad’.

    I completely broke down at that point and was a heaving mess until my husband came home from work. I couldn’t believe that I’d shouted at her like that when she was trying to be so kind!

    The next day I went to the doctor and was diagnosed with late onset post natal depression. That was nearly six months ago and I’m now slowly coming of the meds and looking forward to a drug free Christmas with my perfect family x

  9. I have an obsession with these magnets- they’re so awesome! I can see how you ended up with an over supply imagining all of the cool gifts, etc. to make 🙂

    I always feel especially moved by random acts of kindness- and one that comes to mind happened a few years ago when I moved with my little family temporarily to Berkeley, California for a research stay my husband was doing at the University. Our son was 18 months old at the time and we were definitely in the stage we were were tired all the time and more than a little consumed by our very active toddler. We sublet a cute little house in a neighborhood that had some crime and wanted to introduce ourselves to our immediate neighbors in order to have some connection and contact in case of an emergency. Everyone was very sweet and open and it was great to know that we were surrounded by really dear people. We exchanged numbers and got the lowdown on the neighborhood and felt reassured by our neighbors’ kind and open friendliness.
    About a week or so after moving in we came home one day to find a brown paper bag on our porch. We opened it up to find a basket of blueberries with a note from Katherine, who lived next door, saying “I went to the farmers market today and the berries looked so good. I thought you might enjoy having some.”
    We will always hold this simple gesture of generous kindness in our hearts. It made us feel so at home in a moment when we felt frazzled and vulnerable. We only lived in Berkeley for 6 months but we made lasting friendships with several of our neighbors there.

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