hammering flower prints

I saw Ashley at Life with Moore Babies pound flower prints with her children last week and I knew my son would love this activity!

We collected flowers and put them between two pieces of paper.  (He became distracted by daddy’s tractor in the yard — that’s his sweet little head on the tractor.)

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Next we pounded them with his hammer.  (He, as you can imagine, was a little over-zealous with this part.)DSC04612

And woh-lah, a sweet little Picasso.  We kept the flowers on, instead of peeling them off, and taped it to our kitchen window for a super-easy craft painting!

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Happy playing,

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Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment!  ♥ 

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making a handprint on canvas every year

I saw this idea on Becky Higgins’ blog.  The idea is that you have a handprint for every year of your child’s life.  

We started our handprint canvases when my son was 2 and 7 mths and my daughter is 6 mths.  We will do it again to have a 3 year and 1 year hand print and then we will do it every year from then on.  We will do a different color combination each year and make sure to write the date and name of the child on the back of the canvas.  It’s amazing to see how many canvases Becky has — what an amazing keepsake for our children!  Our sweet handprints are hanging on our wall in our living room — the best art you could ever ask for!

All you need are 8×8 canvases from Michael’s (these were buy one, get one free — I thought 6×6 would be fine, so I started out with those, but then I had to realize, and mourn, the fact that my babies hands are going to grow, grow, grow — and my baby boy’s hands will be man’s hands one day!).

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And you need your desired color of acrylic paints.  I painted them twice to make sure that they were fully covered.

DSC04018I don’t have any pictures of getting the actual handprints — I was very nervous and meticulous — but we came out unscathed and even my sweet baby opened her hand long enough for me to get her handprint ♥

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Paint a Pot & Plant a Plant

Learning through nature, art, and responsibility

My son has been helping me weed and garden these past weeks.  We have been working on our beds, but we are also prepping our pots and flower boxes for annuals.  I wanted him to have a plant of his own to take care of.  And since our annuals won’t be going in their pots for a few more weeks (we had a frost last week!), I wanted to give him a plant for now!  He fell in love with the sweet Lamb’s Ears plant — “They are so soft!”

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We had a rogue Lamb’s Ear growing by my Irises and Echinacea, so I knew this was the perfect plant just for him.
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We picked out a pot to paint.

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And he got to painting.  At first he wanted to only paint the inside, but I had to show him that the plant and dirt would be going in, so he painted the outside too.  I was impressed by his painting job!
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He was so excited to dig up his little plant. He took the shovel and got to work.  I had to help him get all the roots, though!  He thought the bottom tray was a top! DSC04094

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He was super excited, even though his expression is so serious!  This was such a fun way to combine art with nature.  He did it all himself and he was very proud. His plant it sitting in our kitchen and he has to water it once a week, teaching him a little responsibility!

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Make sure to head over to Teach Beside Me to see all of the wonderful Blog Posts about Spring Learning & Play! And you can participate in the Blog Hop over there too!

Here is the line up:

 Monday
Tuesday
Wednesday
 Thursday
Friday


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wordless wednesday: make spring flowers with egg cartons

DSC02941DSC02942DSC02945DSC02946DSC02948DSC02949 DSC02951 Thank you BlogMeMom for a wonderful idea!  The kids loved these and they were so simple to make!

Happy painting,

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Thanks for featuring me!

Featured at Tuesday Tots on Growing a Jeweled Rose

How to make a felt leprechaun for St. Patrick’s Day

I have always thought, from when I was little, that leprechauns are a little creepy. But we have had a lot of fun with various St. Patrick’s Day free, awesome printables at our house, and I wanted to make a cute leprechaun for John for him to enjoy and remember the holiday more distinctly**.

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So I thought I’d try to mimic my felting/hot-glue-gun skills from my Snowy Day Peter. I found a super cute leprechaun, a non-creepy one, from SweetClipArt.  And I got to work.  This one has a few more details, so it took a little longer, but overall it is a 15 minute project if you know how to handle a hot glue gun, which is a talent I have.

Here is a copy of the Leprechaun Template that I started with.

I assembled my materials:

  • Template
  • Felt: green, black, cream, red
  • Cotton balls
  • Makers: red and black
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors

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I began cutting the template apart.  First the hat, then the head, then the jacket, then the pants.  I made two felt pieces of each.

I also cut a black strip for the hat, a little red hair, a black bow tie, two little hands, and two little feet.

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Then I glued each section together with a small bit of cotton ball between the two pieces of felt.  I cut some green eyes for him too.   I messed up some parts, and ended up making a bigger jacket and pants, which I recommend.

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John was there with me when I made it, so it wasn’t a surprise this time, but he loves it!

**We have talked a little about the difference between Protestant and Catholic, and that we really don’t “celebrate” the holiday, (though some of our family is Catholic, so that is certainly fine, too :) ). But we actually should be wearing orange on the holiday — oh well, it is just fun to have an excuse to celebrate the color green, shamrocks, gold coins, drinking good beer (for Mom and Dad), and leprechauns.

Thank you for taking the time to visit Wildflower Ramblings!

Blessings,
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How to make a simple Peter doll from The Snowy Day

I am a bit obsessed with Ezra Jack Keats.  He is, by far, my favorite children’s author.  I did a presentation on author-illustrator Ezra Jacks Keats for a  children’s literature class when I received my Masters in Elementary Education and I fell in love with Mr. Keats as soon as I started researching!

Mr. Keats (his given name was Jacob Ezra Katz and he went by “Jack”) was a great Jewish man (his parents were Holocaust survivors and he served in the Army as well).  He was the first author to put a child of color on the cover of an in-color children’s book.  He realized that young black children did not have a hero in print that they could look up to.  He wrote The Snowy Day and it received the Caldecott Medal, the most prestigious children’s book award, for the year of 1963.  Then Mr. Keats wrote several other books about the same character, Peter, all of which have a unique distinction because of his choice of illustrations; he used paints, textiles, magazines, newspapers, fabric, etc. to illustrate his works of art.  Oh, I just love him!  He passed in 1983; in his lifetime he wrote and illustrated 24 children’s books and illustrated 85 more books with different authors.  I am slowly collecting all of them (so if you see a sale, let me know!)

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I want this book to remain special in my son’s mind, so I made a fun project for his Snowy Day Sensory Bin.  He is about 4 inches tall and oh so cute!  I can’t wait to give him to John, but will have to wait another week!

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I found an adorable Peter Doll at By Heart Books.  I didn’t want to spend $30, so I thought I would try my hand at making one!  Hot glue guns can do anything, you know!  I printed off this picture, then I assembled my supplies:

  • Hot glue gun
  • Red felt
  • Small circle brown felt
  • Small piece of black yarn
  • Scissors
  • Black Sharpie marker
  • 3-6 cotton balls
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Then I cut out two red snowsuits for Peter, using the cut-out picture as a template.  I stuffed a couple of cotton balls between the two, and carefully “hot-glue-gunned” him together!

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Next, I made a cute Peter face with the brown circle, black yarn, and marker.  I glued this to my red, stuffed snowsuit.

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I can’t wait to put him in a Snow Sensory bin for my son!  Here is the picture of Peter for a cutting template.

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“Then he went out into the deep, deep snow.”

Our Advent Calendar

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This is the first Christmas where my son is actually present and excited about activities. I saw a lot of ideas for different Advent calendars and I became overwhelmed. I wanted to keep it simple. I came upon this idea from Martha Stewart with 24 cute little socks; this looked doable and not too difficult. It got me thinking about what I could make on the cheap, and with supplies I already had at home.

I already had in my scrapbook box: 25 round, white tags, green and red stickers, twine, mini clothespins.

I went to Micheal’s, in search of socks or boxes or something that would work.  And I found these cute little red bags (which came in a pack of 25 for $2.99).
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I filled each stocking with these adorable bible verses from Happy Home Fairy — they read through the Gospel of Luke. I also bought some cute, Christmas stickers, one per day.
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I clipped them up on three strings of twine to give it a textured look on our wall behind the couch.   I could have added more to the envelopes and there are so many awesome Advent calendar ideas out there — including fun or religious activities you can do with your child every day, but all that would have been too much. My son is only 2, but next year, I’ll include a small craft/activity idea in each bag.  I’m just so happy that I was able to get anything done!
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Merry Christmas!