Snow People

Ever wonder what to do with those harvest pumpkins that you get each year?  Well I have a craft for you that will use those pumpkins all the way through January.

You will need 3 baby pumpkins of varying sizes.  White, black orange, and pink acrylic paint some buttons, an old shirt or cloth, and a hot glue gun.

I started by breaking off the pumpkin stems, and painting the pumpkins white.  I did half at a time and let them dry well between coats. 

To assemble, I hot glued the pumpkins together, and fashioned a hat out of a piece of cloth. I just cut a strip of cloth for the scarf.  Glue on the buttons, paint the face and you have a cute pumpkin snow person that will make you smile all Christmas and into January.

I keep mine on a small paper plate. That way if they do begin to mold they won’t mar the furniture.

Have fun with this great easy craft!

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leaves you’ll love

So the other day I was washing the dishes and amidst the boredom an idea struck, I am happy to report it was a cute idea, and when I got to doing it, more cute ideas kept springing up…. and since I was feeling so creative, and it actually worked out the way I planned (not something that happens often…lol)  I thought I would share my morning of fun with you.

I was thinking about decorating for fall. I am not a big seasonal decorator, but I found myself yearning for I could make with the kids and hang up around the house.  Something easy, cheap and not too messy.  I decided to make my own window decorations with items that I had around the house.

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You will need:

Wax  Paper

Crayons
A Handheld Pencil Sharpener
A Sharpie
Scissors
Tape
A Heat Tool or Clothes Iron
Newspaper

Here is how it goes together:

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Cut a strip of Wax Paper off the roll that is about 12 inches long.

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Fold it in half and if you need to, use a leaf template to draw the leaves on the paper with your Sharpie Marker.  (I found my template with a simple internet search)

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You should be able to get about three leaves on a page.

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We chose to use fall colored crayons and making sure to toss in some brown and green for visual appeal.

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Little fingers are made to sharpen crayons, so I set Jeremiah to the task.  He just picked random colors and shaved away.

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When we felt we had collected enough shavings, we spread them on the waxed paper and folded it shut.

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Now for the fun part…. and the part where the *GROWN UP* gets in on the action.  Use your Heat Tool to melt the wax shavings in the paper.  don’t get to close or it will start to “smoke”.  No I won’t explain how I know that.  It helps to have a piece of Newspaper under the wax paper, because it is possible for the colored wax to leak through.  There are no photos of this particular part because working the camera, and the heat tool, need to remain independent operations. ‘nuff said.

If you are using a clothes iron, sandwich the wax paper between a few sheets of newspaper.  Make sure the iron is set to LOW and that the steam is turned OFF.  Gently rub the warm iron over the newspaper until the wax shavings have melted.

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here is what it should begin look like as you are melting.

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let the wax paper cool COMPLETELY before you cut out the shapes. Throw some tape on the backs of them, and hang them on the window.

They look amazing when the light shines through them.

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If you are feeling artsy…. and I was as I kept making leaves…….  You could try your hand at making pumpkins… or apples….

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You could even use them to decorate for Thanksgiving.  Aren’t these the cutest name holders you have ever seen?

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Just cut out the leaves or make mini pumpkins and use your scrabble holders to spell your guest’s name.

Happy Crafting!

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Making a Wall Calendar

I am cheap frugal when it comes to making school supplies.  I am certainly not going to purchase a Pre-school/ Elementary Level Calendar for $20-$30 when I can make it for less than $10.

Me and the laminator are great friends.  I found mine at Wal-Mart for something like $25.00.  A quick online search tells me they may not be at that store anymore, but I found it on Amazon.  If you don’t have a laminator, or can’t spring for one… you could use contact paper, or the self laminating sheets that they sell just about anywhere.  Laminating the pieces, helps to make them durable, and a surface you can write one and re-use.

I have cute paper and stickers here at the house,for scrapbooking and card making, so I set out to make a calendar that could be used directly on walls, cupboards, doors, closet doors, picture windows…. where-ever you want to put it. Mine is on a door that leads to the Garage from my Kitchen.  It is a perfect height for the kids to be able to add the days, and everything is stored right on the door.  That means no lost pieces!  It is also ready and easy to review with since it is right in our school area.

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I used my paper cutter to cut equal sized squares of paper. You will need:

31 – 2×2 inch squares (numbers for days of the month)

12 – 5 1/2 by 1 1/2 inch strips (One for each Month)

7 – 3×1 inch strips (Days of the Week)

3 – 8 1/12 by 5 1/2 inch sheets ( for Date, Season, Weather)

4 – 8 by 1 1/4 inch strips  (Seasons)

I wrote on everything with a sharpie and embellished the pieces with stickers, and then ran them all through the laminator.  Make sure you leave spaces to cut out the squares and strips.  (My Season pieces are left over from a calendar that was long dead, and that seems to be the part I saved.) 

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To attach it to the door.  I have used a variety of methods.  Plain scotch tape does just fine, but I do have to replace it on the numbers every few months.  I have used little Velcro stickers, and those are great for the 3 large pieces, particularly the Weather and Date, since those are removed daily to be updated. 

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I write the date and weather in with an Expo Marker, and take it off with Expo spray.  letting it sit a bit before you wipe helps it to come off cleanly.  ( not sure how well you could write on the contact paper if you used it.  so maybe making a few more month and some weather strips might be a better option.)

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I found some cute die cut party shapes at the dollar store and laminated those too.  They add in well when there are family birthdays.  You could make Field trip, and holiday ones the same way. 

I really think this project cost under $10, and I still had Laminating pouches left for other projects.

Hopefully it will inspire you to create a colorful, fun, and interactive calendar into your school days,

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Bookmarks

Today I was reading to Hunter, and realized we didn’t have any bookmarks to put IN the books we were reading….  So for the 12th box of our workboxes, I decided that we would make some. It was a fairly easy craft and could be used for birthday parties or as gifts.

We started with 3 sheets of 6×6 paper.

Cut it into 2 inch strips.

Then decorated.  He chose stamps,but you could use stickers, color pens or pencils, anything you have handy.

We loaded the finished bookmarks into an 8 1/2 x 11 heat laminate sheet.  ( the self laminating sheets will work if you don’t have a heat laminator.  Although, I don’t know why you wouldn’t want a laminator, they are the BEST thing EVER!)

Cut them out, and a hole punch and piece of ribbon later…you have bookmarks. Enjoy!

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Paper Flower Craft

In response to a request for this particular craft…Here it is…

I found this craft in a book called “175 Amazing Nature Experiments” by Rosie Harlow and Gareth Morgan published by Random House ISBN 0679820434
The book is full of great hands on activities for science for ages 2 and up. Even my oldest children still like to do activities from this book. If your library has it, or you can find a copy to buy, I highly recommend it.

My only suggestion is to use a very wide straw… when we made it we used thin bendy straws… and had to tape the petals to the outer part of the straw, because they didn’t fit inside… other than that… it was a blast, and very educational. My son still sees flowers in the store, and will start naming off parts.

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