Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Well, it's a double bonus day...I've been busy making lots of projects lately; here are two of them.

I'd seen an idea for making Leprechaun Traps in an older Family Fun magazine.  My 8 year old daughter helped me with these.  Since leprechauns love all things shiny, we used lots of sparkly trims and tried to lure them into our traps with gold pieces placed on top.  Now, leprechauns also love to break the rules; so we put little signs that told them not to climb the ladders....knowing full well they'd climb right on up there!  The main structure is an old oatmeal container, covered with paper.  We used cardboard for the base then covered it with aluminum foil to make it attractive to the little fellas.  We gathered sticks from the woods behind our house to make the ladders.  I think I had to hot glue those sticks together at least 3 times apiece, since my son kept playing with them and they'd break.  (note to self:  keep fun but fragile things out of reach of little curious hands!)
We placed round pieces of felt on top of the open containers, then delicately put the gold coins on top.  My daughter punched lots of "coins" out of Reese cup foil wrappers.  Isn't she clever??

The idea is that the leprechauns climb the ladder to get to the gold coins, and their weight causes the felt cover to collapse, trapping the leprechaun inside the container. 

We awoke to find that leprechauns had been here, all right!  The tops of the containers had fallen in, just as we had planned.  But the leprechauns escaped somehow.  All they left behind was a trail of gold dust.......  They're sneaky little buggers!  They may have escaped, but they must have been rather weak after their ordeal because they left the gold coins behind!

Guess we'll have to try our luck again next year!

Cards and Silly Putty

I made cards this morning for my daughter's teachers.  She's in 2nd grade and has the good fortune to have a student teacher this year, so I made cards for both teachers.  This year has been a wonderful year for my daughter; she's learning so much and growing by leaps and bounds.

I hand-delivered the cards after lunch when I went in to read to the class.  It's National Reading Month, so each day there's a guest reader in the class.  Last week, the kids were read to by one of the police officers from our city.  They loved that!

After I read a story about St. Patrick's Day and leprechauns, I helped the kids to make Silly Putty.  If you've never tried it, it's a really neat exploration into polymers and liquids, solids, substances, etc.  Here's a link to more info and the directions:

We passed out 3 oz plastic cups that we'd premeasured 1 TBSP of white Elmer's school glue into.  The kids each had a paper towel and a popsicle stick to stir their concoction.  The importance of safety was stressed to everyone (don't touch your hands to your eyes, ears, nose, mouth, friends, etc) and I may have scared a few students, but that's ok.  We put some green food coloring into a container of water, and put 1 tsp of the colored water into their cups.  They mixed the water and glue together.  (now they started to get excited...)  Then I cautioned them again about following directions and not touching anything.  I had premixed a solution of 2 cups of water to 2 TBSP of powdered Borax in a clear bottle labelled "POISON - BORAX" and I showed the students the solution.  We talked a little bit about how a solid dissolved in a liquid is called a solution....I think that's right.  Anyway, then I gave each student 1 TBSP of the Borax water mixture and they started to stir it in.  I don't think I've ever heard so many kids going, "Oooh, check it out!" and "!" in unison before.  They removed the glob and mashed it with their hands for a bit before we made them put it into plastic baggies to be taken home.  (along with another cautionary diatribe about not eating anything after you play with it, don't put it in your bed, etc.)  FUN DAY!!!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Hello, there!

After much deliberation and with no further ado, here we go!  Welcome to my little world of kids, crafting, cooking and chaos.  I hope to post a few times a week, sharing ideas and projects that I'm perpetually working on. 

Here's a project that I enjoyed working on; it's a small square journal:

The journal came from Michael's dollar bin awhile back, it originally had a monogram on it.  (Hint:  I picked this up for .25 in their clearance stuff.  Love that!)  I removed the covers by opening up the o-wires, then painted them with olive craft paint, front and back.  After that dried, I smudged on some metallic olive paint, stamped the sentiment and matted it.  The flower is made by smushing (is that a real word?) some orange cardstock, then cutting it out on my Cuttlebug with a Sizzix die "Flower Layers" which looks a bit like a poppy to me.  I used a bit of dry brushing with a burnt umber paint on the edges, then some metallic orange chalk.  Smushed some more, then glued the layers.  I put the whole shebang back together and TA DA! 

Simple cards:

Enjoy and have a blessed day!!