For her son’s fifth birthday, Danielle Faucher skewered strawberries and bananas into red and white rocket kabobs. She cored and sliced apples for Saturn’s rings. She offered chips with black hole (a.k.a. black bean) dip.

The space-theme party was, in short, a blast.

The party has 153 pins and counting on Pinterest. And it’s just one of Faucher’s uber-crafty creations. The Lewiston mom started a blog last February, Raising Little Treasures, with posts on everything from make-it-yourself washing machines to cloth diaper how-to’s and party ideas. (Parent to a wee one? Check out her “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom”-theme cake.)

Faucher is a music teacher turned stay-at-home mom to three, Anthony, 1, Therese, 3, and Peter, 5. She sings for weddings and funerals at Prince of Peace Parish, Holy Family Church and the Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul and serves as music director for the youth Mass at Holy Family.

She made her kid’s Halloween costumes last week, of course. *spoiler alert* They were pretty adorable.

And she’s also the master of the over-ripe banana. Read on.

Name: Danielle Faucher

Age: 28

Lives: Lewiston

What are your hopes with your blog? I started blogging because friends were always asking for my recipes, project ideas, cloth diaper advice and tips on how we live frugally. I thought it would be fun to share all of these ideas in a more public way in the hopes that other moms could gain from my experiences as well. It has turned into a creative outlet for me. I enjoy coming up with new ideas, creating projects for my children, developing new recipes and then photographing and putting them into words. My blog has since grown and has both national and international readers. I don’t have a full vision of the blog’s future, I take it one day at a time. I have written as a guest for a blog with hundreds of thousands of readers and was able to see some goals for my own blog through that experience.

Where do you go to find ideas? They all start in my head. As a mom, I’m always stumbling upon problems that need solutions. Whether organizing, finding a way to pinch a few pennies, altering a recipe to fit dietary needs, an idea for a birthday party, a Halloween costume or a child is struggling to grasp a new concept during our home-school lessons. I’m always looking for ways to make our life just a little bit easier. After the idea, I turn to both Google and Pinterest to see what others have done. The solution is usually a combination of many thoughts and ideas.

What future birthday parties do you have up your sleeve? I never plan a birthday party more than a month in advance since my children’s interests change so rapidly. Our next birthday isn’t until April. Even if I did know, I keep it a tightly guarded secret.

Current favorite I-can’t-wait-to-try-this: About a year ago, I purchased several yards of cotton laminate fabric (it’s similar to raincoat material) at Marden’s. I had many plans for it, but those projects keep getting pushed to the side. I have finally decided to sew some bibs and child-sized aprons for Christmas presents this year (shh!! don’t tell!) and even possibly a rain poncho for our daughter. The possibilities with this fabric are endless!

You find a $20 bill on the street. What creative goodness do you spend it on? We took a family trip this past year to Washington, D.C. and found $10 on the floor of a Smithsonian. We knew it would be impossible to find the owner, so we took it as a teaching moment for our children. The money was never ours, so it wasn’t ours to spend. Instead, we found a donation box and left it there. If I was given $20, I would probably buy KAM Snaps. They’re plastic snaps that I originally discovered when fixing some of my cloth diapers. I have since added these snaps to everything! Costumes, clothing, toys, even paper weather and days-of-the-week charts that we change daily as part of our home schooling. I’m always looking to expand my collection of colors and could quickly fill an online shopping cart.

What edible goodness do you spend it on? Over-ripe bananas. That sounds odd, but they’re so versatile! I always check discount bins for bananas and then freeze them. If you put them in a food processor, they make a delicious ice cream. Add milk to the ice cream and it’s a milkshake. They also make a great substitute, when thawed, for eggs and oil when baking. I could buy at least 100 bananas for $20!

A can’t-fail Christmas-theme project to try with someone 5 and under: I love repurposing and finding activities that cost almost nothing. Children can easily make their own wrapping paper by cutting open a paper grocery bag and, on the blank side, stamping with Christmas cookie cutters and paint. They could also stamp on paper lunch bags for gift bags. Our children love to help with giving gifts during the Christmas season and the recipients love the special touches made by them.

You have a pile of sticks, glitter, glue, yarn and a bag of balloons: What do you make? My first thought is to build a balloon-powered car with my 5-year-old and turn it into a science lesson. Another option, if the balloons are clear, the glitter could be poured inside for a sparkly decoration. If I handed them to my children with a piece of paper, I’m sure they would make a collage and have a great time in the process.

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