Friday, February 10, 2012

Owl Valentines

I asked my 7 year-old if he wanted to buy valentines this year or make them for his class at school.  He said he wanted to make them, which I think is great because it requires more time & effort on his part.  I showed him some different ideas, and he chose to make owl valentines like we saw here.  He wrote things like "You'll owl-ways be my friend," "You're a hoot!" "You're a real wise guy," and "You're owl-some!" on them.  I already had valentine pencils that I bought on clearance after Valentine's Day last year, so we didn't even have to buy anything to make these!

"You Deserve a Hand": Teacher Valentine

 My oldest wanted to give his teacher a special valentine this year.  We saw this idea on the family fun website.  We bought a small bottle of lotion, and then traced A's hands onto cardstock.  One one side he wrote "You deserve a hand!" and on the other side he wrote, "Happy Valentine's Day."

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Apple Turkeys

It has become a tradition to let the kids make "apple turkeys" at our family's Thanksgiving gathering.  
Items Needed:  an apple for each child, large marshmallows, mini marshmallows, fruit loops, raisins, gumdrops, candy corn, and toothpicks (I prefer to get colored toothpicks).
It's fun to see how different the turn out and how proud the kids are of them!  They enjoy eating them when they're done, too. :)
I love the fact that ALL the kids enjoyed this activity - ages 22 months up to 9 years!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Thanksgiving Table Decoration

My boys and I made this cute turkey table decoration for an early Thanksgiving dinner we had with my family (we'll be with my hubby's side for the actual holiday).  My boys loved decorating the feathers and thought that the balloon waddle was hilarious.  You can use this as a basket to hold dinner rolls or napkins, or just as a decoration like we did.  We found directions for this on the family fun website, though we simplified ours quite a bit (using markers to decorate the feathers instead of paper scraps and sequins and cardstock instead of paper plates).  But that's the great thing about this craft, the kids can totally make it their own!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Ocean Sensory Box

 Today I introduced a new ocean-themed sensory box to my boys.  It was a big hit!  I bought blue aquarium rocks, some fake ocean plants, and a bag of shells from our local pet store.  I also added blue and clear glass beads and some toy fish that I already had on hand.  The final touch was filling it with water.
 The boys explored the shells and fish, dug in the rocks, poured water in and out, etc.  They spent a good hour playing in this!
And of course, my superhero-loving boys had to add Batman, the Joker, and other friends into the mix.  Their superhero toys became scuba divers.  I love their imaginations!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Recycle Collection

 I have a big box in my garage where I save old containers, lids, etc. for future arts & crafts projects with my kids.  My 6 year-old calls it "Mom's Recycle Collection." One day, I just decided to let them dive into it and create whatever they wanted.  They were SO excited when I brought the box in, provided some tape, and said they could make whatever they wanted.  A & K both chose to make robots.  Here is A with his finished product.
K made a robot, too, but he had the most fun with these old mailing tubes.  He wore them on his arms most of the day and told us they were his "robot arms."  Can you tell my boys have a thing for robots? :) This activity made me realize that I need to let them have more opportunities to be creative and do "free" art, without me having a certain (cute) end in mind.  I am also going to start saving even more things in my "Recycle Collection" so we can make this a regular activity!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Homemade Bath Paint

 One day my boys spilled way too much syrup on themselves at breakfast and needed a mid-morning bath (we usually do baths at night).  I knew my 6 year-old might object, so I made it a little more enticing by telling them they could paint in the tub.  We just mixed up some (cheap) shaving cream and food coloring to make the "paint."  My boys loved helping with the mixing process!
They happily hopped in the tub and all three painted to their heart's delight.  It washed off the walls super easily, too.  It also became an inadvertent color mixing lessson, because they found that their yellow and blue paint turned the water green!  This was a fun and easy activity that we will definitely be doing again - I need to stock up on shaving cream at the Dollar Tree!
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