As part of our transition to summer vacation, we went through a bit of a playroom purging recently. In addition to choosing things to donate and things to throw away, I kept a few things aside for repurposing, something I’ve had a bit of success with in the past (see here and here). This weekend, I took an incomplete set of alphabet cards and painted them with leftover chalkboard paint. Then, I let Jenna write letters on them and practice making words. She’s just starting to read, so having a batch of cards she can mix and match into a variety of words is quite a bit of fun.
I remember making friendship bracelets as a child, but I had no idea how early the trend of exchanging jewelry with friends could begin. Jenna has been coming home from pre-K with all sorts of beaded creations lately. This weekend, she had her first play date so I decided to to help her make a gift for our little hostess. I found a set of adjustable silver rings at Michaels and assembled a mix of buttons, beads and wooded shapes we had on hand for her to choose from. My favorite is the golden heart ring, an idea I saw here.
Jason graduated from kindergarten today. And I have to admit, I completely underestimated the significance of this event. Other parents arrived with balloons, flowers, gifts and cameras appropriate for documenting such an event. I arrived at the tail-end of a conference call armed solely with my iPhone. But to make up for it, we’re heading out to dinner and letting him choose the restaurant. His choice: steak at “the kibachi.” Yay, Jason!!!
The sickness in our house continued into our weekend, so there wasn’t a lot of photo snapping the past few days. We did, however, manage to dye Easter eggs and conduct our annual Easter egg hunt. Jason and Jenna love hunting for eggs and are especially competitive about finding the golden egg. This year, there were two, so each could claim victory. Jason was especially pleased when he discovered that the golden egg contained “the Abraham Lincoln dollar bill,” apparently his favorite of all the dollar bills. I asked Jenna later what her favorite part of Easter weekend was and, not surprisingly, she cited the Easter egg hunt and finding the golden egg as the best.
And speaking of Easter egg hunts, can you spot the egg in the last photo? Even after I pointed this one out, it took a bit for anyone to recognize the egg nested near the bottom of this tree. That Easter bunny is a sneaky one …
We had a house full of sickness this weekend, which makes for the perfect time for simple crafts like this one. I bought a batch of paper eggs at the craft store and let Jason and Jenna go to town painting them in pink, gold and silver. I thought we would use them as decorations, but Jenna has already hidden them in her room. Guess I’ll have to find them first.
J+J love little treasures to hold in their hands, and who doesn’t love a little gold these days? With St. Patrick’s Day a couple of weeks away, I decided to create a little pot of gold-painted rocks for Jason and Jenna. Unfortunately, they already found them in a half-painted state in my office, so the element of surprise (and any pretense of Leprechaun magic) is clearly gone. But perhaps I’ll bury them in the backyard for a St. Patrick’s Day scavenger hunt.
I finished Jenna’s watercolor set Valentine’s on Friday, and this weekend I moved on to Jason’s. Both of their schools no longer allow candy, so I had to come up with fun gift options of the non-sugary variety. Mustaches are hysterical to J+J these days, so when I saw these paper mustaches, I decided on a photo prop theme.
Here are the templates that I used for the cards and eyebrows:
- Cards (Print on 8 x 11 paper and cut into thirds)
- Eyebrows (Print on 8 x 11 paper, cut out individually and attach eyes)
I purchased die-cut paper mustaches, but you could also print and cut these mustaches
Jenna’s class has a Valentine’s Day party next week, and since candy is not allowed, I wanted to include a gift item that all of the kids would like. Jenna loves art, so watercolor sets were a perfect fit. I found a batch of inexpensive watercolors at the craft store and then set to work. My first step was figuring out what the Valentine’s would say. This was much harder than I expected, and my husband and I brainstormed for quite awhile to come up with ideas. I also found a great resource for all sorts of Valentine’s puns, and two of my final messages came from this list. I especially love these because Jenna helped paint them!
My children don’t actually understand the rules of dominoes, but they love aligning the little pieces in all sorts of configurations and carefully stacking them sideways only to knock them down in a quick procession. This year, I made a set of Valentine’s themed dominoes using small rectangular pieces of wood purchased at the craft store and paper-punched heart shapes.
A couple of years ago, I let Jenna dip-dye a batch of coffee filters cut into heart shapes. It was probably one of her favorite crafts ever, so I thought I would bring it back this year. Since we no longer stock food coloring, we used watercolor paints instead. And, much like last time, we used the painted hearts to make a Valentine’s Day garland.