I’m not sure when I got hooked on DJ Inkers…

We are so happy to introduce our guest blogger, Patty Rutenbar! Take it away Patty…

 

I’m not sure when I got hooked (Ha! No pun intended!) on DJ Inkers, but I do know it was a long time ago.   (The DJ behind DJ Inkers is Dianne Hook!)

 

When I first started blogging and creating things the only clip art I had was DJ Inkers.  I knew that they would allow me to make anything I wanted with their clip art and use it with my class. But in the beginning, I really want to start sharing what I made to see if others might like my work. I spoke with the staff from DJ Inkers several times to be sure that I was doing the right thing. At the time, their rule was that if you made something with their clip art you could only give it away for free. That was fine at first, but then I realized that if I could sell it, I might make a bit of money too.

 

Not long after that, DJ Inkers introduced their commercial licenses for people who wanted to sell things with their clip art or fonts. I picked up their license right away. Again, I asked lots of questions and they were always, ALWAYS very easy to talk to and had answers for me. I never felt criticized or shamed because I asked a silly question or if I needed to make some changes to something I was doing.

 

I always encourage others to pick up their license if they want to use DJ Inkers clip art or fonts. You can read more about it here.

Fraction Frenzy

 

If you go to my store, you’ll see that I do have a lot of their clip art and fonts in my work. I’ve also been fortunate enough to have them buy some of my work.

 

(There’s a boost to my morale! Thinking that THEY like MY stuff was so exciting!)   The first thing they bought from me was Fraction Frenzy.  They even bought a few others too!

 

I want to show you how I recently incorporated some of their clip art with that of some other artists.

This is actually something I made last year, but it needed to be updated. It’s funny how I just loved it when I first made it, but now, I love it even more.

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(Click the picture to go directly to my store.)

 

Because DJ fonts are so popular & great for making projects for school, we’ve decided to give away one ‘DJ Fonts for Teachers’ download!!! Hopefully this will help you with your creations.  Enter below…

 

Smiles to YOU…

Patty Rutenbar

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Our Family Recipe Book

Dear friends…

 

Alix here… happy to be guest-blogging again.  :)  With Mother’s Day coming up, my siblings and I have been brainstorming some fun ideas for Mom.  After 30 years, it’s getting hard to continue being creative… coming up with new ideas & creations to impress Mom & let her know just how AWESOME she is!  But, it’s totally worth it… and we always think of something.  After having my first baby last year, I am constantly asking my mom how on earth she managed all 5 of us hoodlums.  What a brave soul.  Nothing makes you appreciate your parents like becoming one yourself.

Hook Family Recipe Book

 

So last year, before I gave birth to my now-very-busy son (that time long ago when I still had time on my hands to really get creative)… I did something pretty cool for my mom.  (It was for our entire family, actually.)  I made the ‘Hook Family Recipe Book.’   Hopefully reading a little bit about this will give you some ideas of your own!  Maybe you can use this concept for YOUR recipes!  Make one as a wonderful Mother’s Day gift idea this year… or as a Christmas gift for the entire family.

 

What gave me the inspiration was actually my Grandma (my mom’s mom).  She gave a book of her recipes to my mom many years ago.  To this day, it is one of the few items my sisters and I all want to call DIBS on to inherit someday.  It is such a treasure.  It’s handwritten, and full of not only incredible recipes… but also pages and pages of stories!  She wrote about her kitchen experiences growing-up… learning to cook for a house-full of boys (10 brothers!!!).   There were so many difficult things that she had to figure out (like how to kill & pluck a chicken) in order to cook.  Things that we take for granted as we run to the store for a package of chicken that’s clean and ready to go.  Phew.  Well, I talked my mom into letting me borrow the book for a bit so that I could scan in all those priceless stories and select a few recipes to add to this recipe book I was making.

 

From there it was quite the collaborative effort.  I dedicated the whole first section to my grandma, and then gave every member of my immediate family a section too.  I asked everyone to hand-write (if legible) a few of their favorite recipes and add a story about why the recipe was a favorite.  So, everyone knew what I was making (sort of), they just didn’t know the details of what anyone else was doing.

 recipes

I used adorable DJ Kitchen Doodles’ clip art to create the cover and the section pages for each person.  Of course, DJ fonts are used throughout the book for the table of contents, index, a dedication letter from me AND for those few members of my family with doctor-y handwriting.  Haha!

 

more recipes

 I must say… it turned out really neat.  I wish I could post the entire book for you to see.  The gals who helped me print it at the copy-shop were even asking me for details.  I refer to the book often and I hope my family does too.  It’s been fun to try out everyone’s different recipes and learn more about them through reading the stories we shared & our fun little doodles.  (We are our mother’s children.)  It is a project that I will always hold dear… and hope that someday, my kids will beg for a copy.

 

Should you decide to make one for yourself & your family, I give you fair warning… it was a LOT of work.  Far more than I ever anticipated.  But, again, totally worth it.  And it definitely made Mom smile… which was why I came-up with the crazy plan in the first place.  I love you, Mom!  :)

 

Serious kudos and major respect to ALL the dedicated mothers out there!  I hope you are spoiled rotten on Mother’s Day.

 

Smiles to YOU!

~Alix

 

Enter below to win your own copy of DJ Inker’s ‘Kitchen Doodles’ clip art!

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Decorate your kids bedrooms, nursery or playroom with a DJ smile!

Hello DJ friends…

I’m Alix (office manager, director, Dianne’s daughter etc. at DJ Inkers)… and I’ll be your guest blogger for this evening.  :)  As some of you may know, I recently had my first baby… 9 days after my sister, Abby had her first baby.  Yep, these 2 adorable boys have made DJ a grandma.  (And let me just say, she is GOOD at it!)

 

Well, naturally, as we were preparing for the boys to arrive, I began to do a little nesting.  (OK, a lot of nesting.)  My hubby and I went crazy coming-up with new ideas & decorations for our fun pirate themed nursery.  Suddenly, I began to see DJ Inker’s clip art in a whole new light.  It is PERFECT for making customized & ridiculously cute things for my baby boy.  I could go on about all of these ideas for pages, but I won’t.  Today, I just want to focus on using our cute clip art and fonts for decorating your kid’s rooms!

 

We decided to use ‘Pirate’s Plunder’ to make some cool pictures & a custom name sign to frame-up for Jackson’s wall.  It was truly the easiest thing… and we get compliments on these all the time.  Pick a theme, find some art & a font that you LOVE, then play!  Once we were happy with the layout, we got some inexpensive frames at the craft store & voila!  Customized, unique decorations in my theme.  Have a look:

 

Pirate Room

We had so much fun, we couldn’t stop there!  My mom also continued the theme & the fun piratey ideas for our baby shower invitations, thank you notes & more!

Pirate baby shower

It was such an amazing experience to go through pregnancy with my sister.  We went through all of the ups and downs together, shared ideas & advice & whined on each other’s shoulders about ‘WHEN will these boys finally come OUT?!?!’  So, of course, I had to make a little something for my nephew using DJ clip art too!  Abby had a jungle theme going for her nursery, so I busted out ‘Critter Craze.’  This project, again, was really FUN to make, perfectly customized and looked quite professional finished-out in a basic black frame.  (Note, for this project I also used a few images from my personal favorite collection: ‘Kidoodlez: Wonder-Full World.’)  I’m pretty proud of how this turned out:

 

Critter Craze name sign

The possibilities for decorating are truly endless.  We’ve got sweet, cute or playful clip art for just about any theme you can come-up with.  If you’re ever looking for something specific, don’t hesitate to email us & ask (smiles@djinkers.com).  We love helping you with your projects and, even MORE, we love to see the things that you create.  It’s truly inspiring.  Seeing your creations makes our art come to life and reminds us why we do what we do here at DJ Inkers.  I hope this post gives YOU some fun ideas for projects to make… and a fun new way to look at clip art.

 

Smiles to YOU!

Alix :)

Yay for our Guest Blogger! Bringing smiles to teaching the 3 Branches of Government

We are excited to introduce Aris, our first GUEST BLOGGER at DJ Inkers.  :) We just love her ideas… & it’s so fun to see what she’s done with our clip art and fonts!  Plus, President’s Day is right around the corner… so the theme is perfect!  So, without further ado…

 

Hello DJ friends!  I’m Aris Rossi from Sailing into Second and I’m beyond excited to be guest posting for Dianne today! {Holy moly these are some HUGE shoes to fill!} Today I’ll be sharing some mini lessons on the 3 Branches of Government using DJ Inkers Kidoodlez U.S.A Clip Art!

 

In social studies, we’ve been learning about our U.S. Government, specifically the 3 branches of government. I started out with a pictorial input chart (a strategy adapted from Project GLAD)
where I created colorful visuals of information (picture notes) to describe each of the three branches. I drew the picture as I described each of the vocabulary words and concepts. I also used colors to organize/chunk important information. It’s super important to revisit the chart on multiple occasions to add additional information or images.  We always keep our pictorial input charts available as resources all around the classroom. At the end of the unit, I “auction” the charts or KWL’s off to students…they go b-a-n-a-n-a-s over them! It’s absolutely hilarious! Here’s an example of the one we’ve been using during this unit.

One activity I used to help my students remember what each branch does and is responsible for was this fun sorting activity! 

When introducing a new unit (for social studies, math, science, or even language arts) I also like to use an inquiry chart (very similar to KWL) to assess and activate background knowledge, address misconceptions, teach revision and learning as a continuous process, and to model reading/writing skills. I know…sounds like it couldn’t possibly hit up all of that stuff, but it really does! This strategy comes from the inquiry method approach to science to think, predict, and hypothesize. The students also keep a copy for themselves in their social studies interactive notebooks to refer back to after we finish our unit (see below for example). 
 During small reading group centers, I pulled out these informational text reading passages and comprehension activities I created about each of the 3 branches. We spent a few days doing close reads with these bad boys to really soak in all the great information found in each passage!
In addition to all the informational text reading, we dove into all academic vocabulary using my vocabulary matching game and cards! They loved all the vocabulary flip books too!


We even got to create some awesome patriotic stories using picture cards! Isn’t the clip art simply ADORABLE?!?

Overall, I’d say they enjoyed learning about a topic that might not always be a hit with the kids. It really helps to branch out (no pun intended!) and teach this topic across the curriculum. We spent many days focusing on the important aspects of our U.S. Government, but really made it accessible to my students in a variety of ways and activities. DJ Inkers Kiddodlez U.S.A. Clip Art made these activities and worksheets MUCH cuter!  What are some ways you use DJ Inkers in your classroom?  I’d love to hear all about it!

 

And as a special gift, DJ Inkers has a coupon just for YOU to SAVE 25%!  All you have to do is enter coupon code:  DJUSA in the box at the bottom of the ‘view cart’ page, click apply & enjoy!  Just be sure to use your coupon before it expires on President’s Day (February 17, 2014).

 

Sailing into 2ndIf you liked these ideas you can find the full 3 Branches of Government Unit here! I’d also love it if you would stop by my blog at Sailing into Second! 

 

 

-Aris Rossi

 

 

Thank YOU, Aris!   You are adorable.  Teachers like you make us look good.  ;) 

 

If you are interested in being a guest blogger at DJ Inkers, please contact us (smiles@djinkers.com) & send us an idea for what you might like to blog about.  :)