cupcake liner volcanoes!

Juliet’s been asking to do the old baking soda/vinegar volcano trick lately, so we finally went outside and gave it a go. (The first time we tried it in the kitchen and yeah, that was messy!)

I dug up some old toiletry caps, let her fill them with baking soda and then we covered them with cupcake liners. (Why not, right?)

It leant the caps more of a “volcano-ish” feel, so we went for it. Ripping small holes in the tops allowed space for the vinegar to go in and the lava to come out.

The effect was quite dramatic–baking soda and vinegar never disappoint! The nice thing about the caps is that they contained the baking soda nicely and allowed Juliet to continue pouring more and more vinegar to bring on more and more lava.

The fun would probably still be going on if we hadn’t run out of vinegar.

An unexpected piece of fun for Juliet was the varying sizes of the caps–this gave her a small, medium, and large volcano which she enjoyed comparing to one another. As in, “Okay, now it’s the small’s turn! Wow–that’s good. Okay, now it’s the largest one’s turn! Woo-hoo!”

Good cheap fun on a hot summer day. ūüôā

This project was inspired by the “Earth” book we got in a chik-fil-a kids meal. Now we are looking for these:
Time For Kids: Volcanoes!
Time For Kids: Volcanoes!
The Best Book of Volcanoes
The Best Book of Volcanoes
Volcanoes (Let's-Read-and-Find-Out Science 2)
Volcanoes (Let’s-Read-and-Find-Out Science 2)

Any volcano favorites to share with us?

mother’s day crafts for kids: button blossoms

Moms love jewelry (or at least this mom does), so I was trying to come up with some sort of craft Juliet could do with me to make something pretty to wear for Mother’s Day. This is what I came up with, and after working on it with my 4 year old, I’d have to say that it is probably better for an older child–i.e. one who can use scissors. Having said that, we did have a lot of fun even if I had to do most of the crafting. She was a good button finder and paper crumpler.

You need to find some of these buttons with the one hole on the back (not sure what they are called.) We just looked through our button stash and found some. This part is perfect for a four year old as looking through the button box is an activity in its own right.

Next, I cut out some flower shapes from some scrapbook paper. Juliet matched up which button would go with which flower.

I cut a slit in the middle and asked Juliet to place the button in it. This proved too difficult for her tiny fingers. But maybe a 5 or 6 year old could do it.

Next, cut slits around the petals–just define about 5 or 6 petals. The kitty was very interested in this part.

After cutting the slits, Juliet bent and crumpled the petals so they curled up.

Lastly, I threaded some ribbon through the hole and we had bracelets and necklaces. Juliet asked if she could wear one–so, I may not be getting any for Mother’s day….

I found that a few of the buttons could accommodate a bobby pin, so we made a few hairpins, too. I wanted to take a picture of a bracelet, but couldn’t tie one on with one hand. Juliet hasn’t learned how to tie yet, and the cat, well, she was all paws.

So, sorry. But they do look cute around the wrist as well. ūüôā

Linking to: Show and Tell, Trash to Treasure, Amaze me August, We Play, Get Your Craft On, Making Monday Marvelous, Just Something I whipped up,

thumbprint easter eggs: kids craft

We were looking for a fun “egg” craft to do that didn’t involve actual eggs…so we came up with this. I just cut out a basket from some scrapbook paper and opened up some paint.
egg basket
It was fun to fill our baskets with eggs! I think these would be cute as cards for the grandparents or even as little keepsakes. I think I might get out the alphabet stamps and personalize Juliet’s basket. And unlike Pottery Barn, it will not cost me $6 to do so.

What egg activities/crafts are you doing?

Linking up to Strut Your Stuff at Somewhat Simple.

spring kids craft: tissue paper tulips

After making our daffodils, Juliet and I were inspired by the tulips growing in our garden.
what you need
The key ingredient was a piece of a styrofoam egg carton–it was the perfect thing to give our tulip its shape. I cut out some rounded red petals from tissue paper, and we used our trusty mod podge. (Love that stuff.)
We just put some mod podge on the cup and placed petals all around it. Easy for adults and kids.
I just kept layering the petals till I was satisfied with the look.
Next I tackled the inside. Same thing–just pasted and layered till it looked right.
Here’s an inside shot.
After the flowers were dry, we punched a pipe cleaner through the middle. ( I used a black and a green one to make the stem and stamen? (Is that what it’s called?)
To finish, I twisted it underneath to secure.
Cheery and fun!

Anyone know of any good tulip books? I don’t have one right now….but I’m on the hunt!

linking to Whatever Goes Wed, SYS Thursgiveaways

kids spring craft: tissue paper daffodils

side view
Spring has been here for a few weeks and we’ve been on a flower kick. Our garden is is full bloom and what we see outside is definitely inspiring our craft time inside.
a host of golden daffodils
I mean, how can you resist these beauties? I want to keep them all year long, so we decided to try our hand at making a few.
what you need
Here’s what you need: pipe cleaners, a circle of clear contact paper, tissue paper petals, and some ribbon or paper to make the center of the daffodil.
contact paper
Start by punching the pipe cleaner through the center of the circle (sticky side up) and then back down again. Twist the pipe cleaner under the circle to secure it. Then peel the protective paper off. You will stick the petals to this part. (I did this part as prep and let Juliet continue from the next step on her own.)
Kids can easily hold the stem and place the petals around the circle. We learned through our own observation and from Bright Yellow Flower  that daffodils have six petals.
However, Juliet decided they would look better with a few more, so you’ll see that ours are not scientifically correct. (I’m okay with that–it is art, after all!)
For the trumpet (middle part), I found this gold lamay trim on the clearance rack at Walmart. It was $1.50 and there was only one roll left. But it was perfect, I thought. If you don’t have something like this, you could always just make it out of regular ribbon or construction paper. You just need a tube that will stand up straight in the middle of the flower.
Gluing on the trumpets was the final touch.
a host
Once they dried, we placed them a vase to enjoy.
They are quite cheerful, don’t you think?

We found this book¬†Bright Yellow Flower¬†by Judith Hoffman Corwin to teach us more about daffodils. It’s a good spring-time read.


Thanks to Polly for hosting the Read Along at Helping Little Hands! Have you been following along this month? She has some great books and great activity ideas for you to check out all month long. 
linking to: 
craft Making

whatever goes wed, kids get crafty, amaze me august, 

st. patrick’s day bouquet: kids craft

We had some extra green cupcake liners after making the garland, so we decided to make a bouquet for our March centerpiece.
what you need
We raided the button box for green buttons (we only found 8), sent Ben to Walmart for some green pipe cleaners (we only had black), and got to work.
through the center
We punched the pipe cleaner through the center. (Somewhat related aside: When I worked for the textbook company, we had to call these “chenille stems”, but I prefer the old school “pipe cleaner”. Hope you don’t mind.)
punch it
Juliet placed the button on and then I bent it and brought it back through another button hole (that part proved a bit too difficult for her 4 year old fingers.)
It ended up looking like this–I twisted the pipe cleaner underneath the button to make it secure.
green bouquet
I have to say, it looks quite cheerful! I think I’ll be keeping it around long after St. Patrick’s day.

Bottle caps better watch out–I think cupcake liners might be my new favorite craft material!
linking to: get your craft on,

shamrock ribbon barrette tutorial

I love making holiday hair accessories for Juliet. I had some green ribbon and came up with this shamrock for St. Patrick’s Day. It was pretty easy to do, hopefully, you can get the idea from these pictures.
first loop
Start with one loop and hot glue it together. Leave enough ribbon for a stem. You can trim it to size later.
2nd loop
Make a second loop and glue it down. (behind the first loop.)
third loop
Make your third loop and secure with glue.
trim ribbon
Trim the ribbon on one side.
fold stem
Fold the stem over and glue it down. Then trim it to the desired length.
glue on barrette
Finally, glue it on a barrette and you are done!
shamrock barrette
Ready for St. Patrick’s Day!

Hopefully, those pictures made sense–feel free to email me or leave a question in the comments if you need more explanation.

Linking to Tip Junkie handmade projects

st. patrick’s day shamrock stamp craft for kids

Do you have any dollar store foam hearts left over from valentines day crafts? Don’t pack them up yet! I used some of ours to make this shamrock stamp.
what you need
Here are the pieces I used–three hearts and I cut the x into a stem shape. I used a bottle cap for the stamper. You could use just about anything…
the stamp
Here it is assembled and ready to go!
a little too much paint
For the past few years, I’ve seen people using these foam stickers as stamps, but I’ve never tried it with Juliet till now. We took a few times to figure out exactly how much paint worked best–here we got a little too much. Also, we found that the stamp slides across the paper very easily, so it is easy to smudge the shamrock if you are not really steady.
stamped shamrocks
But eventually, we got a few good ones.
shamrocks a plenty
Even the messy ones are pretty cute in a modern art kind of way.

I’m working on a St. Patrick’s Day booklist for you this week!
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We Play

how to display children’s artwork in your home

This is our art gallery in our home. It’s the door to the garage from the kitchen. Juliet figured out that the door was metal (and thus perfect for magnets), so we’ve been using it as a display place in addition to the refrigerator.
I’ve recently come across some exceptionally beautiful home galleries and wanted to share the links with you. These places truly inspire me.
I cannot get the¬†painted yellow frames¬†in this beautiful art space out of my mind. I am trying to figure out how to incorporate this idea in our new playroom…
I love this¬†creative use of office clips¬†for displaying botanical prints. I think it could be easily adapted to display children’s art in the living room.
This display of¬†framed children’s artwork¬†is one of my favorite DIY nursery art ideas.

Another¬†great use of bulldog clips–this one requires some carpentry skills…

Scroll down to the bottom of this post to see the corkboard nook.

More fabulous painted frames.

Magnetic trays anchored to the wall provide an easy-in-easy-out rotating art display.

I love the simplicity of a¬†string and clothespins¬†hung above a child’s bed.

I’ve been thinking about doing¬†something like this¬†up the stairway wall for a long time. Must find those clipboards!

I also like these Ikea wire hangers. So easy for kids to change the art themselves!

Which is your favorite? How do you display your child’s artwork in your home? If you have them, please leave links so I can see!

Edited: Here are some more links to check out!
instant art gallery: I love how kids can easily slide their art in and out without having to bother with clips.

spring crafts for kids: crocus sun catchers

Look what we found in our garden a few days ago–Our first sign of spring! This yellow crocus had me shouting for joy, I tell ya. The weather is even cooperating and we’ve been having some beautiful 60 degree days around here. (I know it’s only February, but that’s when our spring starts. It’s one of the main reasons why I live in Georgia.)

To celebrate and to welcome spring, I thought we would do a tissue paper/contact paper suncatcher craft together.
making art
The shapes were really simple–just some oval petals and leaves. If you fold and stack the layers of tissue paper enough, you only have to make a few cuts. I taped the contact paper to the window pane sticky side out and we were ready to make our crocuses.
fun in the sun
Three yellow petals seemed to make a nice crocus blossom.
Placing the paper on the sticky surface was surprisingly relaxing…
Here’s the up close view.
crocus window
And here is the view from a few steps back! Looks bright and cheery, I think.

I found a few other fun spring flower crafts that I’d like to try this spring.

tissue paper forsythia (I think this one looks so beautiful and we have tons of yellow tissue paper still!)
handprint easter lilies (Could be fun for Easter, too.)
felt and button flower spring bouquet (A little more ambitious, but I like the thought of letting Juliet try her hand at sewing the buttons.)
A Peek-and-Find Adventure with Bobby Bear (Maurice Pledger Peek and Find)
This books has nothing to do with flowers, but it does have to do with spring, so I thought I’d share it:¬†A Peek-and-Find Adventure with Bobby Bear¬†¬†by Maurice Pledger. Juliet LOVES this one even though it is probably better suited to 2-3 year olds. She still loves lifting all the flaps.

Do you have any spring flower crafts or books to share?

linking to
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