Kids Gettin’ Their Craft On: TP Roll Bracelets

You know those hot summer days when the kids are just bored out of their minds and there’s absolutely ‘nothing’ to do? 

Yeah, we have those too.  Never mind the fact that we have toys coming out our ears and books that have yet to be read.  Those things just won’t do on ‘boring’ days such as the one we had a couple weeks ago.  Of course those days are over now (crossing fingers) that school is back in session and we are getting our homeschool groove on.  Ok, maybe only in a perfect world…

But a couple weeks ago, K and her friend found something to do on just such a boring summer day.  It was a miracle!  I didn’t even have to help them think of it.  They just asked if they could have some toilet paper rolls (that I’ve been saving for another project) and some yarn.

TP roll bracelets 

Sure!!  Why not? 

And this is what they came up with….. 

All they did was cut the TP roll in half to make two bracelets, snipped one side all the way down the middle to create the opening, then put a light layer of glue on the outside and wrap the yarn around.  Does it get any simpler?  I dare say not! 

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Once it’s done, simply put it on your arm like a cuff. 

Aren’t they cute?  Creativity at it’s finest! 

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**Note:  The only problem they ran into was that K flattened her TP roll out too much as she glued which made it difficult for it to stay on when it was done.  Keep it rounded as much as possible. 

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Smash Books

The first time I ever heard of Smash Books was on Pinterest.  One of the gals that I follow has a whole board dedicated to them so they kept popping up on my… ‘feed’?  Is that what we call them? 

Anyway, it looked like a whole bunch of miscellaneous papers, thoughts, pics, lists… pretty much whatever you wanted.  So, I had an idea…

My kids collect garbage!  To them it’s not garbage, more like treasures.  They get upset when I call it anything that sounds ‘trashy’.  Excuse the pun. 

They get little papers from church with thoughts and quotes on them (not what I consider garbage, it just gets cluttered), notes and letters from friends and cousins, and sometimes they like to save things like candy wrappers.  Why?  I know not.  They just do.  But I get tired of finding the trash all. over. the. house! 

Enter, the Smash Book!

Each child was presented with one of these sketch books.  ($3.?? at Wal-Mart – I don’t remember the exact amount.)

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And now they can smash whatever garbagy treasures they want into their own personal smash book and I don’t have to find it everywhere.  My kids have smashed everything from church quotes and calendar pictures to lists of things they desire for their future and candy wrappers.  And there’s always room for more because they’re supposed to look cluttered. 

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Gotta love it! 

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Homemade Moon Sand Recipe

Remember when I talked about all the busy bags I got at the exchange I went to?  (Click here and here)  Well, among all those bags o’ busy-ness there was a bag of sand.  It was supposed to be Moon Sand but given the cost that it would have taken to make 20 plus bags for the exchange, the girl who did it opted to provide the bag of sand along with the recipe for Moon Sand.  That way we could all make it at our leisure and she didn’t have put in a ton of money. 

Please note that it does NOT cost a lot to make one batch (or even more).  It just would have been a lot for that many batches all at once.  Actually it was pretty inexpensive. 

Here’s what you do:

Mix 1 1/2 cups of cold water with 3 cups of cornstarch.  This is the hardest part.  It turns into this weird, goopy stuff that can’t decide if it wants to be liquid or solid.  It’s pretty fun to play in.  The kids liked it. 

Once you’re done playing in the slime, add 6 cups (I liked the consistency at about 5) of regular play sand, one cup at a time.  You’ll probably have to use your hands to get it all mixed in.   

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When you’re all done, it looks and feels like damp sand.  The best kind of castle building sand!!  Now it’s ready to play with. (Next time you get it out you may need to add a couple tablespoons of water to revive it back to the right consistency.)  H and A were so excited to find that they could make miniature castles INSIDE the house.  All the kids had a blast.  I have never played with or even seen the ‘real’ Moon Sand so I can’t give a comparison as far as texture goes.  All I know is that the kids are loving it.

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MORE Busy Bag Ideas

I really hope you need more busy bag ideas because I’ve rounded up a few more of my kids’ favorites to show you. 

{If you missed the first busy bag post, click here}

And there might be one more post of busy bags coming up… maybe.  Do you need more?  Cause I’ve got ‘em!  Remember, I came home with a whopping 47 bags last week.  To be honest, we haven’t even opened some of them (like the colored pasta or rice – I’m saving those for a project with the girls ;) )

But let’s take a look at some of the busy bags that we have played with and loved. 

First up, I’ll show you the two I made.  I’m maybe a little bit ashamed to admit it because mine were soooo inexpensive to make and I know that some people had to have spent quite a bit of money on theirs.  I know I came away with a TON more than I contributed.  But hey, that’s the way it goes.  I couldn’t have done it at all if I didn’t have cheap ones. 

Anyway, back at the ranch….

Popsicle Match 

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Cut felt in a variety of colors for ‘popsicles’… 2 per color.  Hot glue, or sew the two pieces of the same color together being careful not to close the bottom.  Write the name of the color of each ‘popsicle’ on the end of a large craft stick (tongue depressor) in black (for beginning readers), and on the other side, write the name of the ‘popsicles’ in the actual color of each popsicle itself (for preschoolers).  Do NOT attach the popsicles.  They are meant to be slid on and off the sticks for matching the colors and/or color names.

Worm Pick-up

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You just need a bird (clothespin), a piece of ‘grass’ (paper) and some worms (pipe cleaners).  Cut the worms up and shape them.  Have the bird pick up the worms from the floor or table and put them on the ‘grass’.  {Lots more great ideas for fine motor skills here!}  C likes this one.  He had a hard time with the ‘bird’ at first but he’s got the hang of it now.

Rocks in a Bottle

busy bag 11I know this seems silly but I’m telling you the kids love this! Take an empty water bottle and fill it with those decorative pebbles.  You don’t need the bottle to be full.  My kids (especially C and B) like this a lot.  They dump them out and then they stay busy putting them all back in.  And then they dump them out and put them back in again.  It’s a vicious cycle! 

Actually, they really like it when I let them have an egg carton, too.  They like separating all the rocks into the different egg compartments.  H likes to separate the different colors of rocks this way, too.

Hot Glue Designs

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A and H really like this one a lot.  They are already contemplating what other kinds of shapes and designs they could make.

Just take your hot glue gun and make a design on some cardboard (squiggles, shapes, smiley faces, stripes, etc – hey those all start with S… weird!).  Once it’s completely cooled and dried, you can set a piece of paper over the design and rub it with the side of a crayon (remove crayon wrapper first).

Sponge Blocks

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C and B have already had a ton of fun with this one!  Just cut some sponges into strips.  It doesn’t get any easier than that, right?  My kids play with them slightly wet to help them stay.  Plus, C likes to squeeze the water out of them (over the cookie sheet, of course ;) ).  This keeps my kids entertained for quite a while sometimes.  And sometimes not, you know how kids are…

Wooden Disc Memory Game

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I’m sure that’s not the technical name but it’s late and I don’t want to find that particular bag (among the 47!) just to find out.  We’ll have to live with Wooden Disc Memory Game for now.

This is one of MY favorites!  I don’t know why.  It’s just so darn cute!  It’s pretty self explanatory.  Just cut shapes out of felt to fit the discs and glue them on.  Have your child turn 2 over at a time to see if they match.  Match by color and/or shape. 

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And now for a VERY serious question… is anyone else weirded out by the fact that Christmas is NEXT MONTH?!  Hey hey hey, some of these might make great gift ideas, no?  I think so…

 

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Busy Bag Exchange & Ideas

I keep seeing ideas for Busy Bags all over on Pinterest and other blogs that I come across. 

My cute friend Kristin set up a Busy Bag Exchange, you probably remember me mentioning it before, and had QUITE the turn out.  Anyone that signed up had to do so by a certain date and sign up for a specific activity so everyone would know how many bags to make of their activity.  She had 27 people sign up for the Toddler age group and 20 people signed up for the Preschool age group.  Me?  I signed up for both.  That means that I came home with a whopping 47 activities! 

47! 

I may have gone slightly insane in the process of making 47 busy bags for the exchange but I am telling you, it was SO worth it!  If you ever get a chance to do a busy bag exchange, I highly recommend it. 

My kids (including the older ones… though K and A may not want to admit it ;) ) have been having so much fun with them.  We haven’t had a chance to really go through all of them yet but I wanted to show you a couple of fast favorites.

For those that may not know what a Busy Bag is, it’s basically homemade activity, usually for little ones, that fits into a gallon size zip top bag.  Whoever came up with the idea is a GENIUS!  I have no idea who to credit…

THANK YOU to the Busy Bag Goddesses!  {I figure it MUST be a woman… or women, no?}

Some busy bags are great for fine motor skills, some for learning, and some just for pure entertainment. 

And now… some of our favorites, so far:

Pipe Cleaner Fun

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Just take an old food container, clean it out, poke holes in the lid (just big enough for a pipe cleaner) and VOILA!  B loves this one.  It kept him quietly busy for 20 minutes when I introduced him to it.  I think another of my cute friends made this one… Sharlee.

Pom Pom Stuff In

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I think Kristin made this.  C, B, and H all love it.  Just burn a hole in the lid of an airtight container, just big enough for a pom pom to fit through.  Easy Peasy!

Gel Writer

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Take a dollar store bottle of hair gel, fill a gallon sized zipper bag, add up to 1 T. of glitter and a few drops of food coloring.  Zip bag closed making sure you have no air pockets.  Mash the bag until it’s all incorporated.  I like My kids like to smash the imprint of my hand their hands into it.

Felt Fishies

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This is the one that ALL the kids love, after all, who doesn’t love to go fishing?  My friend Maria made this one but she doesn’t have a blog so I can’t link you :(

I don’t know where she got the template for the fishies – maybe she just made it up.  But just trace 2 of the same fish shape in every color of felt you plan to use.  Hot glue them together with either a small magnet, paper clip or soda can tab inside near the mouth.  She had some of the paper clips slightly sticking out.  Glue a googly eye on and you’ve got your fish! 

To make the ‘pole’, just take a small wooden dowel, tape some yarn or string near the end, glue 2 round magnets to the end, sandwiching the string.  Ta da!!

Chalk Blocks

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Ok, I’ll admit it, THIS is my very favorite!  Maybe I have an obsession with chalk.  Maybe.  But you can’t tell me it’s not totally awesome!  Four small blocks of wood, painted with chalkboard paint.  So simple and yet the possibilities are endless.  C likes to take one block at a time and fill the whole block up with white chalk (hence the white-ish block in the pic).  The girls like to draw one pic and spread it amongst all 4 blocks then take their picture apart.

Felt Shapes

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I think this one is totally clever.  H really likes this one.  So does C.  I haven’t really let B play with it yet because I’m pretty sure he’ll find fun in throwing the little pieces EVERYWHERE!

It’s a DVD case with a piece of white felt clipped into the clippy things (I’m sure that’s the technical name) on the inside.  Then just cut a bunch of different shapes out of felt in all lots of colors.  H likes to make designs with it.  C just thinks it’s cool that felt sticks to felt.

So, are you ready to host your own busy bag exchange?  Go for it!  Just make sure you invite me.  ;)

I’ll do another Busy Bag post once we’ve had a chance to go through a few more of them.  I need to show you the ones I did, also.

**To see more Busy Bag ideas, click here**

  

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Cake Pops {Tutorial}

Have you ever made cake pops?  If not, I’m sure you’ve at least seen them around.  I’ve wanted to make them now for a couple of years but never had until K’s birthday party over the weekend.  She really wanted them as her ‘cake’ so I decided it was time I give it a go.

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Let me just tell you… they’re a LOT of work!!  I looked up several different tips online to ensure that they turned out well, and they did, for the most part.  We had our occasional casualty here and there but I think the next time I make them I’ll give myself a whole day’s head start!  Doing it the day of was a little stressful and we didn’t have quite enough time to chill the pops before coating them in chocolate – which was the cause of said casualties. 

Are they worth the effort?  Absolutely, but they’re not the easiest things in the world.  Before making them I thought, I’ll make these for Halloween, Christmas, birthdays, and every other major holiday!  Now I’m thinking not so much. 

They’re fun and way cute. If you haven’t made them before, you should try it. 

The first thing you’ll need to do is make a cake.  Grab any flavor of cake mix you desire and make it according to package directions.  K wanted strawberry cake pops so we went with a strawberry cake mix. 

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Let the cake cool completely before doing anything else.  This could take a few hours.  Once it’s cooled, place it in a large bowl in chunks.  I know it’s hard to see that beautiful cake dumped into such an ugly heap.

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Now crumble it up with your hands.  Crumble, crumble, crumble.

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Add about half of a container of frosting (choose one that complements your cake flavor- we used strawberry frosting) and mix it up with your cake crumbles.  You’ll probably have to get messy and use your hands.  I would have taken a pic to prove that I did so myself but do you know how hard it is to take a picture while covered in cake and frosting?  My camera would NOT have thanked me!

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Spray your hands with nonstick cooking spray and shape the cake mixture into several small balls.  Roll them tight!  Depending on the size, you should get anywhere from 30-50 pops. 

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Now you’ll need some sucker sticks (bigger ones) from the baking section of your craft store (or Wal-Mart).  I sent Anthony to the store for me and he came home with the BIGGEST ones.  I think I would use some that are slightly smaller next time. 

Melt some Candy Melts in the microwave for 30 seconds.  Stir.  If it’s not quite ready, microwave another 30 seconds and then in 10-15 second intervals after that, stirring each time until it’s melted.

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Dip the sticks in the melted chocolate then push the sticks into the cake balls. 

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Place either in a block of craft foam or a cake pop holder (that’s what I have but I recommend either having another one or using a couple of blocks of foam – the holes were too close together in the cake pop holder).  Another option is to just lay them on a cookie sheet or large plate and place in the fridge for SEVERAL hours!  You could do the freezer if you’re in a pinch for time. 

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Once they’re chilled, melt a package of Candy Melts in a double boiler or your own makeshift double boiler {pan with shallow simmering water and heatproof bowl on top).  Candy Melts come in LOTS of different colors at craft stores.  If you can only find white (or are using regular white chocolate chips) you can color them with food coloring but Do NOT use the water-based food coloring.  Use gel.  Water will ruin your chocolate… even just a drop!!

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The melted chocolate may be a little too thick for coating your pops so to thin it out a bit, you can use a tablespoon or two of shortening.  I used coconut oil because I don’t usually have shortening on hand. 

Coat your pops in the melted chocolate.  Some tips I read suggested spooning the chocolate on for a smoother finish but I found that to be harder and it made them look messier.  If the spoon method works for you, great!  I just kind of rolled my pops in the chocolate until it was evenly coated.  This is where we had a few mishaps.  Ours didn’t have enough time in the fridge.  But most of them turned out just fine. 

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K had the privilege of decorating them.  She sat with her 6 dipping bowls full of different sugars and sprinkles, ready for each chocolate covered pop I handed her.  She loved doing that. 

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And there you have it!  We refrigerated them again after finishing just to be sure that the chocolate hardened and no more would fall off. 

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My Little Picassos!

Well, I don’t know about you but I thought General Conference was absolutely amazing!  Of course, it always is but I swear to you, every single talk had something that I needed to hear.  And some even had more than I cared to hear.  No one likes to hear that they need to improve in one way or another.  I much prefer to hear that I am doing everything perfectly and nothing needs to be changed!  Is there a conference for that?

I’m totally joking.  Conference really was amazing and some of the talks were meant just for me.  How do they know?  It’s baffling!  I guess it can only be credited to one thing… the Church is true!!  Our Father in Heaven really does know and love each of us and relies on the Prophet to be his mouthpiece.  **More on all of this to come…***

{If you are not of my faith, and would like to know more about what we believe, please feel free to email me and ask questions.  I can’t promise to know all the answers but I do have a testimony and I’ll do my best to find out the answer to any questions you may have.  Or you can visit the official website for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, or Mormon.org.} 

This blog is not meant to be a preachy blog and will not ever become one.  I’m far too ignorant in my knowledge of the Gospel for that.  However, at certain times, I find it necessary to document how I am feeling personally and how the Gospel has brought me to one place or another.  It’s part of me.  Part of who I am and who I hope to become.  I hope you can understand. 

Anyway, I digress…

As wonderful as conference was, it certainly had it’s hiccups.  Saturday was like a dream!  Everything was running smoothly and all was well.  The kids (including the boys) were relatively calm, Anthony and I were able to take notes (yes, take notes!  First timer here…).  The kids worked on their Conference packets, Conference Bingo, ate Skittles, the whole works during the morning session. 

I put the boys to bed for the second session and then it was time for the girls to get to work on their canvases.  They were so excited!  It was the moment they had been waiting for all day long.  We figured if we had them do theirs on Saturday while the boys napped, we would bypass the inevitable tornado that is C and B who would no doubt, run around like mad men ruining the girls creations just to get a rise out of them.  And they would be successful, too!  I promise you that.  And it wouldn’t matter that they had their own canvases to work on.  Hearing the girls scream is much more fun than painting! 

Plus, I decided that since Anthony had been unaware of my ‘plan’ to plaster the walls with kid painted canvases, it might make for a better chance of him not flipping out if we only had to deal with the girls on Saturday and work with the boys on Sunday.  Not that he’s a flipper outer.  Just FYI. 

Please note, I am NOT dead!  I think that means that I did a pretty decent job masterminding this whole fiasco, no? 

I gave no instructions to the girls, just paint… whatever they wanted. 

No wait, I take that back… I gave ONE rule.  No crying!!  Seriously, it happens often around here.  They’re girls.  They’re dramatic.  They cry!  K is such a perfectionist that if she makes the tiniest mistake on anything, she thinks the world is going to end.  A just gets frustrated if she messes up.  And H, she’s a last born.  Carefree as they get.  “If I make a mistake, I just turn it into something else!”  And she does. 

Luckily, there were no tears.  K messed up (according to her) just once but she decided to take H’s advice and turn it into something else.

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They painted and painted and painted.  Painted the whole second session away until the very last speaker.  Look at my little Picasso wannabes!!

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H had a really cute thing going on hers but I think she ‘finished’ earlier than her sisters and she didn’t want to be done yet so she kept adding more and more and more and more until…. well, you’ll see.  I must admit that I was kind of sad about the stuff she covered up.  But I didn’t say anything.  It’s her picture.

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Now let’s talk about Sunday.

Sigh

Yeah, it wasn’t quite as smooth as Saturday.  I’d like a refund on Sunday!  Can I get a do-over?

I was all ready.  Note taking packet in hand and no sooner had the first session started than the boys are having an all out brawl!  C was mad at B for playing with who knows what so he pushed him.  B got upset and stood up to push him back. 

There was bear hugging (not the nice kind, mind you) and biting…. of clothing.  Luckily B didn’t get any skin.  There was arm squeezing, wrestling, hitting, yelling, scratching, you name it!  They persisted throughout the entire session.  I was exhausted!

Between sessions is when we decided to have the boys paint… before naps.  Boy did they need them!  I couldn’t wait to get them in bed. 

The painting went well, even if B did try eating the brush full of paint more than once. 

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C enjoyed himself as well.

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Finally, it was nap time.  I was finally going to get some peace and be able to pay attention to the speakers. 

All was well until the scissors went flying. 

A had been using them to cut out her paper dolls from her conference packet and H was so patiently (IMpatiently) waiting for them.  A finally got tired of H’s whining and threw the scissors at her!  (No, they didn’t hit her.)

BIG TROUBLE!  It became a yelling match between A and us (Anthony and myself).  She told us that K and H both throw scissors sometimes so ‘why can’t I?’

I swear, that girl is going to be the death of me!  She’s 7 going on 14… with major attitude!

Once that situation had been taken care of, B woke up from his extremely short nap.  Dang it! 

He was whiny all afternoon.  Not only whiny but he must have found the shelf that A keeps her attitude on because boy oh boy did he have one today!  It’s been developing for several weeks now but today he really pulled out all the stops!  Grunting, scowls, hitting, the works!  I must admit, the scowling is pretty darn cute. 

C woke up toward the end of the last session just before the Prophet spoke.  A decided to pull an attitude again at that point…

Um, I hate to admit it but, there may have been some yelling during the President Monson’s talk.  I promise the spirit was felt.  Maybe not at that moment…

UGH!  We really aren’t yellers… hard to believe after this post, I know.  I should say, we try not to yell. 

But anyway, I plan to blog more about conference later.  Oh, and did I mention that I did a lot of cooking and baking (and other things) over the weekend?  I did!  That means recipes are coming.  I promise, they are good ones. 

And now for the real reason you are here (get to the point already, Brooke!):

Here they are, in all their glory… CANVAS PAINTINGS!!

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{I had the kids pose underneath a beautiful overgrown bush of our neighbors that happens to be growing into our side of the fence.  Yes, we need to trim it… don’t judge!  Oh and Moe, our dog, decided to hop in a couple of shots… Howdy, Moseley!}

Didn’t they do a great job?  (I’ve always wanted a picture of President Monson.  And now, I have one!)

And look!!!!  I have a happy wall now!  Hooray for happy walls!

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Tell me you love it!  I know you do.

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Puff Paint

Today I was SuperMom!  It happens… maybe not often, but it happens.

Want to be SuperMom, too?  {or Aunt, or Grandma… whatever}  Well, here’s how you do it…

MAKE PUFF PAINTS!

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It’s a great way to use up all that self-rising flour you’ve been hoarding in the pantry.

Wait… what?  You don’t have self-rising flour?  Who are you?

Totally kidding, I didn’t have any either.  But fear not!  You can make your own, and I can almost guarantee that you have all the ingredients to do so.  Ready?

1 c. flour

1/2 tsp. salt

1 1/2 tsp. baking powder

Mix it all together and you’ve got self-rising flour!

 

Well, that was painless.  Now let’s make the paint…

I found this concoction on Pinterest.  It originates from this blog.  She’s got lots of other great things, also. 

I decided it was time I put some of the ‘Pinteresting’ things I have found to good use.  You’ll need to mix the following…

1 T. self-rising flour

1 T. salt

3 or 4 drops of food coloring (we used traditional and neon colors)

enough water to make a thick paste (1 T. was perfect for us)

Mix it all together and you’ve got puff paint!

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Paint on cardstock or cardboard {don’t use regular paper… it won’t turn out well}.  Cardboard will help it not curl up on the edges.  Use brushes, cotton balls, q-tips, whatever you want.  Make sure you paint pretty thick!  Otherwise, it will not puff.

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Once you’ve finished your painting, put it in the microwave for 30 seconds to a minute.  THAT’s where all the magic happens!  You want it dry and puffed. 

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How easy is that? 

Now, go on!  Be a Super… for the day!

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Easy Felt Hair Bows

This is a bow that my daughter learned how to make at an Achievement Days activity for our church.  Since then, she’s been making them for birthday presents for her friends.  They are so easy and fun!

Here’s what you’ll need:  a piece of felt, beads and/or jewels, marker, cup, glue gun, scissors and hair clip.

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This was her felt of choice for this particular bow.

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You’ll begin by tracing the opening of the cup onto the back of the felt with a marker five times {recognize that cup from the soda can hair bows?}bow3

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And now cut them out, just inside the marker lines.  Reserve one for the base.

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Run a zigzag pattern of hot glue down the middle of each of the circles.  And fold it in half.

{Hers looks more like a dot but a little more than this is necessary}

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Now do the same thing on the half circle of felt and fold in half again.

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Do this four times, remember to reserve the fifth one as a base.

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Glue each of the pieces onto the base with the point in the middle. 

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Cut a small piece of the leftover felt big enough for the clip to hold onto.  Run a zigzag pattern of glue over it and glue to the underside of the hair bow.

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Add a jewel…

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…and some beads… and VOILA!!  So easy, a kid can do it!!

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Old Fashioned Taffy

In honor of Pioneer Day this Sunday, we’ve made butter, fudge, ice cream {which turned into an epic fail… which is why it was never posted :( }, and now taffy!!

Now before I get into the recipe, I have a funny story to tell.

This recipe calls for glycerine.  And in the book it specifically says that you can find this particular ingredient at a drugstore.  Not only that but it’s ‘essential’.  See?

So, I did what any good girl would do and ran to the drugstore for my glycerine.  This is what I found…

Great!  I have what I need, let’s get started…

But WAIT!  On the back of this bottle of glycerin (no E) it states “for external use only”.  Lovely, what am I supposed to do now?  One of my ’essential ingredients is not to be consumed.  I called my mom and she did a little research via the internet (gotta love Google) and found that glycerine (with an E) is ’also known as glycerin’ (without an E).  Hmmm, so it was time to call a pharmacist.

Yes!  I did, I called a pharmacy to ask a silly question.  It went something like this:

***ring, ring***

Technician (female):  Pharmacy… technician speaking.  How can I help you?

Me:  Ummm hi, I’m calling with what is probably a really silly question.

Tech:  *light giggle* That’s ok, we love those.

Me:  Okay, well, I have a recipe for old fashioned taffy and it calls for glycerine.  In the book it says that it can be found at a drugstore so I went to Rite Aid and bought some but realized that on the back it says ‘external use only’.  Am I really supposed to use this in my recipe?

Tech:  *hearty laugh*  No!  Don’t eat that stuff!  It’s not supposed to be eaten.  You really have a recipe that calls for glycerine?

Me:  Yes, but I noticed {actually Anthony noticed… so unlike him} that the one I bought is spelled without an E on the end.  In the book, it has an E.  Would that make any difference?

Tech:  I don’t know, let me ask the head pharmacist.  Hold on for just one minute…

Tech {after asking head}:  I guess there is an oral one.  Maybe if you were to call Orson Gygi’s and see if they carry it.

Me:  Okay, thank you so much.

Well, after that embarrassing display of ignorance, I called Gygi’s and they DO, in fact, carry glycerine (with an E) and it is in fact edible.  The lady said people use it in fondant.  Being that I know absolutely zippo about fondant I would never have known.  But it got me thinking, if it’s used for fondant, maybe craft stores would carry it.  They carry fondant.  As it turns out, I was right!  This is the correct glycerin, folks!

And now, let’s proceed, shall we?

This recipe comes from this book, one of my favorites!  And it was published in 1980… maybe back then, glycerine (with an E) was sold at drugstores.

We’ve decided that the ‘E’ stands for ‘edible’, no?

Here’s what you’ll need:

And now you’ll need to combine the sugar, water, corn syrup, salt, and glycerine in a saucepan.  {I could have used a smaller one}.

Bring to a boil.

Boil to 258*.  It will thicken as it heats up.

Meanwhile, butter a cookie sheet.  Use real butter, please… not a spray.

Once the mixture reaches 258*, take off heat and let sit for three minutes before stirring in butter and vanilla.  Stir in completely.

{Notice the little black flecks… yeah, not too happy about those.  The burnt sugar on the sides got stirred in.  Don’t freak… I did just a little.  No biggie.}

Pour it onto the buttered cookie sheet.  It probably won’t fill the whole thing.  That’s okay. {forgot to take a picture of that… sorry!}

Let cool until it can be handled with bare hands.  This happens within just a few minutes.  Don’t wait too long or it will harden too much.

Separate into pieces {yes, it looks like raw chicken} and strrrrrretch and fold, strrrrrretch and fold, strrrrrrretch and fold.  {Yes it deserves the extra R’s because it really is that tough for a wuss like me. ;) }

The left one above has not been pulled yet, the right one has been pulled just a few times.

Which is why I make my husband finish it off for me.  {Hi Anthony!  I think you look awfully handsome with that facial scruff you’re growing!}

Keep going until it’s ‘white and pliable’.

Now you can either cut into little pieces or shape it into your initial… Go for the initial!  The kids think it’s great!

 

Old Fashioned Taffy (Lion House Taffy)

2 c. sugar

1 1/2 c. water

1 c. white corn syrup

1 tsp. salt

2 tsp. glycerine

1 tsp. vanilla

2 T. butter

Boil sugar, water, corn syrup, salt and glycerine to 258*.  Remove from heat.  Let sit for 3 minutes before adding butter and vanilla.  Stir in until butter is melted completely.  Pour onto buttered cookie sheet and cool until it can be handled with bare hands. 

Make sure your hands are clean.  Take a piece of taffy and stretch and fold over and over again until white and pliable.  Form into initial or cut into pieces.  Wrap in parchment paper or wax paper.  It will stick to anything else. 

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