Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Christmas Craft: Not a Creature Was Stirring

I found this ADORABLE idea here.  These are great gifts for grandparents and great-grandparents.  I usually sit down and make five of these at one time.  You could even do one set of prints while one child is napping or at school, and then the other set of prints at another time.  One on one with paint can be less messy.

What I always start out by doing is taking an old fitted sheet and placing it over my dining table.  This protects my table for the most part.

I use card stock or watercolor paper.  I pull out five sheets of paper.  One for my parents, one for the in-laws, one for our house (I frame them and hang them up with the holiday decor!), and finally, one set each for my grandparents - my kids are so lucky to have FOUR great grandparents!  Then I pull out two extra sheets (you will see why below).

I use a paper plate, add gray paint, and dip one child's hand in it.  I switch out the five papers and do five hand prints.  Then I give her one of the extra two sheet and let her go to town.  Sometimes I give them another paper plate with lots of colors and they have a finger painting session.

Next I do the hand print with the other child, and give her the other extra sheet.  Now they are occupied while I clean up my portion of the craft.

I place the five hand print papers on the table to dry (it shouldn't take too long).  Throw out the gray paint paper plate, and finish supervising the finger paint session.  Wash up the kids (maybe a bath), and they go off to play.

Grab a pencil and markers - gray, black, pink, green, and red.  Make pink circles for ears and outline with gray.  Make black eyes, nose, whiskers, and a tail.  The holly is green and red with black outline, and the saying is in green.  Sketch the saying in pencil first to make sure it is the layout you want, then go over it in marker.  "Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse."

Write the name next to each child's hand print so you don't forget whose is whose!  And add which year this was.

Fun for the kids, it doesn't require too much artistic ability, and the grandparents just love it!  You may even see a tear.  Merry Christmas!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Halloween: Carving Pumpkins

Carving pumpkins is a fun family activity, but it can be messy.  I am giving you some tips today on how to keep everything as clean as possible!

First, here is a list of items you will need:

Pumpkins (duh)
Carving Knife
Dry Erase Pen
Triple layered plastic bags
Paper Bag
Ziploc Bag (I used a Quart size) 
Tea lights
Fireplace lighter

First, cut open the paper bag and lay everything on the paper bag.  Then use the dry erase marker to draw around the top of the pumpkin.  Make a notch in part of the circle, so you can easily put the top back on.

Start cutting your pumpkin.  You will see that I am pulling the knife toward myself.  You will want to do the exact opposite of that.  #safetyfail

Once your pumpkin is open, put the ziploc bag over your hand.  Use this hand to hold the scooper and scrape the inside of the pumpkin.  Then pull out the guts and put them into the triple layered plastic bag.  You really want to clean out your pumpkin.  This will make carving the design later much easier.

When you are done de-gunking your pumpkin, use the dry erase marker to draw your face.  If you mess up, no worries!  Just wipe it up and start over.  Carve your faces or design, throwing the pieces into your triple plastic bags.

Once complete, put the plastic bags on the paper bag, wrap it all up, and take it to the (outdoor) garbage bin.  Clean your knife and scooper.  Put tealights into your pumpkin and light with your fireplace lighter.

Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 14, 2016

Halloween Craft: Ghost Costume

You can read here about one of my daughter's Halloween costumes.  The other one wanted to be a (friendly) ghost.  I ordered an inexpensive white tutu from Amazon.  Then I picked up a white long sleeve shirt from Target, and some black felt from the craft store.

I found a free ghost face printable online.  I printed it and cut out the pieces.  I pinned them to the felt and cut them out.

Then I pinned the felt to the shirt.  I had my daughter try on the shirt to make sure the placement was where I wanted it.  Then I just hand stitched the face onto the shirt.  It didn't take long at all!

Final product!  So cute!  She wore it all October long.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Fall To Do: Backyard Campout

I dislike camping.  My husband thinks it is a great experience (I agree...for other people, ha!).  Last year, I did not think the girls were ready to camp.  Mr. Perfect improvised and decided to set up a camp out in our back yard.  I think this is a fantastic alternative to actual camping.

He set up the tent and started a fire.

 Molly the kitty enjoyed exploring the tent.

Of course we had s'mores.

And ghost stories!  It was actually a super cute and friendly (not scary) book about Georgie the Ghost.  They made funny faces with the flashlight on their face, and shadow puppets.

They went right to sleep when it was bedtime, and even slept in when it was morning!  I brought them hot chocolate when they woke up.  It was such a special treat.

Since they did so well, does this mean I have to entertain the idea of ACTUAL camping this year?!?

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Doodles: My Art

I shared some of my son's doodles here, now I am going to share some of my own!  Drawing is a great way to relax and decompress.  It is also something I can do to relate to my kids, which is always a plus.

This is from a coloring book.  I do enjoy the coloring books, but they are very detailed and take a long time to do.  Quick doodles are more enjoyable for me.

I would love to see your doodles!  Tag me on Instagram if you post a photo of your doodles.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Doodles: Ethan's Art

My son loves to draw.  He is in an art class in junior high.  These are some of the things he has drawn that have really impressed me.  He is so patient, creative, and passionate.  He truly inspires me to take more time to draw.  Thanks for letting me share with you!

Friday, May 6, 2016

Currently: 05.06.16 Kids' Edition

I thought it would be fun to do a kid version of the Currently List.  You can check out my most recent list here.

Watching:  The girls' most recent favorite is Kate and Mim-Mim.  My oldest likes Big Bang Theory.

Reading:  I don't even remember how I came across these books, but I. LOVE. THEM.  Getting kids interested in classic literature is really important to me, and these books are the gateway to this.  The artwork is colorful and playful.  My son loves reading the Jabberwocky book to the girls.  There are more being released later this year that I have already pre-ordered!

Listening:  My son loves his podcasts, and the girls like twirling around to Let It Go.

Making: ...a huge mess!  I love seeing their imagination sprinkled around the house.

Feeling: I could not choose just one feeling.  The girls' feelings seem to roller coaster all over the place daily.  Overall, I believe them to be happy and content, but the emotions do vary widely throughout the day depending on the situation.  You know, like if they asked for triangle toast, and we gave them triangle toast, but it was on the wrong plate.

Loving:  They love our backyard chickens.  They always ask to hold them, feed them, get them out of their coop.

Wearing: The girls are wearing lots of dresses.  They beg to wear dresses daily!  My son is totally into comfort.  He wears jeans and tee (his favorite is a bacon shirt).

Drinking:  The girls love juice boxes and chocolate milk.  My oldest likes hot chocolate.

Wanting:  The girls want sleepovers.  They constantly ask us to sleep in their rooms.  The oldest wants an XBox.

Needing:  Snuggles.  No, wait, that's what I need from them!  They do need time and patience.

Waiting:  My youngest is waiting for her birthday!  It is next month, so for her that means it will take forever to get here!

Dreaming: My oldest is a big dreamer.  He wants to go to a high tech college and create characters for Nintendo.  I love his dreams and I hope so much that he achieves them.