Painting Fun

Happy Almost New Year’s everyone! Since Thursday is New Year’s Day and I am only working a half day on Friday this will be the only post I will be writing this week, and no craft. ūüė¶ I have to admit that now that December is coming to a close and it has been a few weeks since the kids and I have done a craft I actually miss doing the crafts. So next week we will be getting back into the swing of things and starting out the new year with a fun craft, that I haven’t decided on yet… But for today I’m going to talk about a craft that Penny, Jude, and I did this Fall that hasn’t made it on the blog yet.

At some point this Fall, I’m not going to try to remember when because Christmas killed my brain, Penny made up her mind that she wanted to do face painting. When I arrived at their house that morning their dad had already set Penny up with the paints and water and she was painting Jude’s hand. She also painted her hands, Jude’s belly, her own belly, and finally my hands.¬†wpid-20141030_101753.jpg

At this point I can’t exactly remember what each of the paintings were but I do remember that mine was a butterfly. Can you see the butterfly? I’ve always loved letting them play with face paints because I like how it encourages their own imagination and hand and eye coordination, especially now that I don’t have to do all the painting. Over this past year I have seen Penny’s painting dexterity improve so much. She can now easily handle the paintbrushes and make if not perfect at least somewhat clean lines. Jude also enjoys playing with face paints, I hope this next year his dexterity will improve as his sister’s has. Face painting will definitely be something we will be doing in the new year. So have a great New Year’s celebration and the kids and I will be back in the new year with lots of fun new crafts!

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Sweet Success

Ladies and Gentlemen let it be known that I made a perfect batch of sugar cookies with the kids! There was not a burnt, unshapely, or glittered cookie in sight! It was in all respects a glorious success.

The cookies Penny and Jude decorated
The cookies Penny and Jude decorated

I had a game plan from the beginning and I kept my eye on the prize. We started a little later than I originally planned but I believe it ended up working in my favor. Penny and Jude were in a particularly riotous mood yesterday  and they ran around shouting and playing while I prepared for the cookie making in as much peace as you can have under the circumstances. I then allowed each of them to help me in turn with one of the processes, mixing dry and wet ingredients. I then released them to play again until it was time to roll them and cut them out.wpid-20141218_104444.jpg

I again allowed one kid at a time help me roll out a ball of dough and cut out cookies. Once they had each had a turn they were once again sent off to play. This strategy worked beautifully because I was able to focus my attention on keeping the dough at the right thickness and shapes. Once a whole tray was filled they were allowed to decorate them as they liked. After this final contribution I had them sit down at the table to eat lunch, that I had heated up while they were decorating, while I cut out and decorated the rest of the cookies. I made sure to keep a timer on so as not to forget a batch of cookies while cutting out and decorating another batch while also keeping Penny and Jude at the table and eating. wpid-20141218_105207.jpg

The whole activity took some effort on my part mostly because I was so determined to not mess the cookies up as I have in the past. However, even though I was grateful when the last batch was out of the oven and the kitchen was once again clean the cookies were glittered prettily and tasted delicious! The reward was well worth the effort, as I often find when it comes to baked goods. Well everyone, I hope that your weekend is as sweet as the beginning of mine has been. Until next week enjoy the cheer of the season!

Cookie Time!

Best-Sugar-Cookie-Cut-out-Recipe-finalIt is that time of year everyone! Time to make outrageous amounts of sugary sweet things and then eat them all saying you are only celebrating the season. Thursday the kids and I are going to be partaking in this glorious tradition. We will be making sugar cookies. Now as a warning sugar cookies are the one dessert item that I have consistently had trouble with; they always seem to come out a little different than I hope, usually more burnt. ¬†So this activity could go south fast… But I’m not talking about that yet! I found a bunch of recipes that claim to be simple and the best. So this week since all the recipes are basically the same I am going to use three¬†of them because of the varying advice that is attached to the recipes. I will be using Make Bake Celebrate’s ¬†Rolled Cookies 101, Love Grows Wild’s Perfect Sugar Cookie Cut-Outs, and In Katrina’s Kitchen’ Best Sugar Cookie Recipe EVER. With the help of these three recipes I hope to make beautiful sugar cookies with Penny and Jude that they can both bring home to their parents and I can bring to go see The Hobbit with my friends later that night.

So what could go wrong with this recipe? Well as I said before sugar cookies and I have never been on the best of terms, when I’m baking them at least, hand them to me finished on a platter and we are CLOSE! I could burn the cookies meaning the kids will be upset and I will have no cookies to bring into the movie. The kids could get the baking ingredients all over the kitchen, which they have done in the past. I could burn them. I could roll them too thin and they tear. I could burn them. They could spread strangely and not look like pretty snowflakes when they come out. I could burn them. I could forget an ingredient ruining the batter. And did I mention I could burn them?

However many times I have burnt sugar cookies in the past I am trying to push all fears about burning them again aside and go into this activity with a clear and determined mind. My hope is that the kids are obedient which they should be when I threaten them with no cookies, and that I will have a nice little stash of cookies to enjoy during the movie. Friday I’ll tell you all the sweet or burnt details!

Snow Day!

I have to 20141211_102456 (1)apologize for this week. I have had tons of papers to write, including a surprise assignment that was sprung on me on Monday. Luckily I a done! That’s right my crazy semester is over and all I have to do is do Christmas shopping, read my book, catch up on my TV shows, and craft with the kids. This week a craft did not happen because of school, but we did get to play outside in the little bit of snow.

It was fun and needed to get outside yesterday and play in the little snow there was. It is amazing to see how kids react to snow. As soon as we got outside they started running around screaming and laughing. Their imaginations ran rampant. And they loved sliding down the slick slide. For me the fresh air was a great brain stimulant that helped me finish up and submit my final paper last night. And they simply loved being able to to run wild! So until next week everyone have fun, play in the snow if you have any, and get in the Christmas spirit!

Winter in a Jar

It’s Friday ladies and gentlemen! The work week is either finished or just about to be over! I’m happy to say that procrastination hasn’t won the battle, ok well maybe I should be writing a final paper right now but I’ll do that as soon as I’m done writing this. The snow globes worked out well. They look so pretty!wpid-20141204_102203.jpg

Penny and Jude’s mom went into work an hour later than she usually does so I got some extra time Thursday morning, but that also meant my time with the kids was cut short. They came in wanting a snack and juice and so before I could start doing anything for the craft I had to quiet their requests. It was a bit of a crunch to get everything set up, the kids sitting down ready to do the craft, and the glitter glue snowflakes on the jars before it was time for me to make lunch. Thank heavens my friend Alice¬†was there with me, she was able to print out snowflake templates while I set everything else up.

Sadly the silver snowflakes are hard to see.
Sadly the silver snowflakes are hard to see.

The template was easy enough to follow once I put it inside the jars, sadly I didn’t ask her to save the link so I can’t tell you exactly where we got. However I’m pretty sure she just googled it so I would suggest doing that cause it really helped. As I’m sure you already guessed I painted the snowflakes on the jars while the kids sat and watched me. They also colored while I was hard at work. After I was done with the snowflakes I left the jars on the table to dry. I was in the other room with the kids when I heard Alice¬†go “Oh no,” she had smudged two of Penny’s snowflakes! I had to do immediate glitter glue surgery. My instruments were Q-tips and more glitter glue. Luckily my surgery was a success and you can’t tell I had to fix it. The glitter glue took a lot longer to dry than I thought it would, after 4 hours Penny’s still wasn’t completely dry. Then again they were sitting in a room with a roaring fire, Alice¬†doesn’t like the cold, so that could have been why they didn’t dry very quickly. After Penny got up from her nap we added water to the jars and then the much¬†anticipated glitter. I used white and blue glitter and when it blended together in the jar it looked really pretty. The only scary thing about the snow globes right now is I didn’t realize we had run out of super glue and so the jars can at this point still be opened and their contents spilt. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen!wpid-20141204_163226.jpgI think this craft was a big success. The snowflakes turned out looking better than I expected, even with the emergency surgery. And the glitter catches the light really well. The kids love them and so I am happy. And now that all the fun is over it’s time for me to get back to my papers. ūüė¶ I’ll talk to you all next week, that is if I’m not buried under all my notes and papers. Have a great weekend everyone!

 

Snow Globes

It’s the first week of December! The weather is frightful, it’s snowing right now! The semester is coming to a close. The Christmas music is playing. And everyone is getting into the holiday spirit. I simply love this time of year. I love snow, Christmas cookies, buying presents, getting presents, spending time with my family, getting the tree, the glow of Christmas lights (done tastefully) and did I mention snow? To me, snow is one of the most magical and exciting things in the world. I act like a kid when it snows. This week I am going to be channeling my inner child to make the craft. Penny, Jude, and I are going to make snow globes!DSC_1956

I originally found this blog through pinterest and thought it would be perfect for this week. It works perfectly with the season we are going into and who doesn’t love a snow globe. This fun¬†and cost effective craft came from the blog The Pink Doormat. It looks like it is a bit of a more time consuming and work intensive craft than we usually do but I think we are up to the challenge. They look really pretty and have the feeling of Frozen which will thrill Penny, and Jude he’s a big Kristoff fan. If we can pull off this craft they will look awesome! We will have to do it in parts because the glitter glue snowflakes need to dry before we can put the glitter and water into the jar. I’m think we will start them in the morning before Penny goes to school and then finish them after her nap. There are no ornaments in these globes but I am going to try to find something to glue on to the lid of the jar, and in the original post she says glycerine can be added to make the glitter settle slower so I might try to get some of that too. I am also adding super glue to the lip of the jar so that they can’t open up the jars once all the stuff is in them, cause that would be a mess!

These snow globes look so fun to make and play with, so what could go wrong? Glitter glue. Glitter glue is a staple in any house with crafty kids, the only problem is they’re kids. Glitter glue is messy. It could just as easily get everywhere but on the jar as it could get on the right spots on the jar. The same goes with glitter, I might be spending the whole day trying to extract glitter from every nook and cranny in the house. And then there is always the fear that we will successfully complete the craft and one of them will either drop their globe or open it before the super glue sets and all the glitter and water would go EVERYWHERE! I really don’t want one of them to break or open. It would be such a mess. And there would be so many tears. My goodness I don’t want one to break!

Wish me luck everyone. Finals are setting in, and all I want to do is sit on my computer looking through pinterest finding crafts for this blog. Plus this craft could end in disaster! To find out what happens with the craft come back Friday, hopefully I wouldn’t still be covered in glitter.