Posted in Craft Corner

Summer Craft- Pineapple Pencil Cans

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Aren’t they cute?

I don’t know about your kids, but my cute craft girls are currently obsessed with pineapples! Maybe it’s a summer thing as I have seen pineapple prints on beach towels, tote bags, and water bottles.

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My daughter’s pineapple mug served as inspiration.

For this craft I collected the following supplies:

  • empty cans (washed out, labels removed; I chose hot chocolate cans because that’s what I had on hand)
  • Mod Podge
  • sponge brushes
  • small paper plates (for the Mod Podge)
  • yellow construction paper (I had two different yellows- one light and one dark)
  • yellow tissue paper squares (optional; I already had them on hand from a past craft)
  • glitter (optional, but little girls love glitter!)
  • pineapple crowns made out of green construction paper
  • yellow duct tape or clear tape (for attaching the crown)
  • black Sharpie (optional; for adding a face if desired)

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My daughter created the stencil for the pineapple crowns and although it took me more time and work, I laminated them so they’d be sturdier and wouldn’t tear. That is certainly optional however. 🙂

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I also had some small Pringle cans on hand for the younger kids.

I had the kids start their craft by tearing pieces of yellow construction paper. Then we poured some Mod Podge onto the paper plates and the kids started brushing the glue on the outside of the can, adding paper, and then brushing glue over the paper. Didn’t they do a great job? As you can see, some of the girls turned their cans into banks as I had lids for the cans.

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This was my favorite. Look at the detail.

This craft was a hit with both girls and boys (we had two boys join in the fun), and I loved the way they turned out.

♥ Raise your hand if you love Mod Podge as much as I do! Thanks for stopping by. ♥

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Posted in My 52 Stories

All Kinds of Delightful Journals (Part 3 of a Journaling Series)

Besides the classic journal, as I call it, where you write about every day life, there are all kinds or types of specialty journals and today we are going to touch on three of my favorites…

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These journals were purchased from Deseret Book, which has a wonderful selection.

The travel journal: This is a journal where you keep track of your vacations and travel adventures. Consider including-

  • the planning stage
  • your travel companions
  • the travel route and mode of transportation
  • the accommodations
  • weather and location of each day
  • tours, attractions, local sights
  • photos (If you have a polaroid camera, that would be a fun size and you could pop it in right away.)
  • ticket stubs and receipts
  • favorite memories from each day
  • nature sketches
  • travel quotes and memes (Create your own!)
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This journal (top left) has kraft pages.

Choose a journal with sturdy pages if you’re adding mementos. Consider blank pages if you want to sketch.

♥♥♥

The study journal: This is a journal that becomes a personal study tool. It’s a place to keep your study notes. What you include will vary depending on the type of study, but consider-

  • vocabulary and definitions
  • favorite verses and quotes
  • timeline of events
  • doctrines and principles
  • memes, pictures, sketches, doodles
  • your thoughts and insights
  • your questions and answers or conclusions
  • lessons to learn from others’ experiences
  • your own experiences and lessons learned
  • your testimony
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This composition book is one of my scripture study journals.

I prefer composition notebooks for this kind of journal. A spiral notebook works great as well. I like to use a variety of colored pens to make it fun and to break up my notes.

♥♥♥

The gratitude journal: This is a journal for the purpose of positivity. 🙂 It’s a place to record your blessings and works best when you write in it daily. Consider including-

  • your favorite part of each day
  • memories which bring a smile to your face
  • acts of kindness and service bestowed upon you
  • acts of kindness and service you give to others
  • things and situations you are grateful for
  • people who bless your life
  • uplifting quotes and verses
  • your doodles and sketches
  • photos of your friends, family, and pets
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This specialty journal features encouraging quotes. It’s pictured in the first photo above and is entitled: Three Moments of Joy.

Select a quality journal with a beautiful cover or custom make your own cover of a spiral or composition notebook (Mod Podge your favorite quotes and memes). A plainer journal can be brightened up with colored pens, stickers, and washi tape.

♥ Stay tuned for a guest post on bullet journaling, which is something I’ve yet to try. Do you keep or have you ever created a travel journal, study journal or gratitude journal? If so, I’d love to hear about it. What would you add to my lists? ♥

Posted in Craft Corner

Summer Kid Craft- Dream Catchers

It’s been a busy summer here these past two weeks. Marcus has obtained his learner’s permit and wants to practice as often as I’ll allow it. As his dad is working in another state, it falls to me to be his driving parent. I have to say, so far he is a sensible driver. He’s a really good boy. I’ve started contemplating his tenth grade year and what we’d like to add to his regular online classes. We will be back and forth between our home here in Utah and my husband’s rental house in Montana, where he is currently employed. Hooray for homeschooling!

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Even Marcus joined in this craft, along with a younger boy who visited with his cousin.

This was a fun craft and one that helped the girls practice some basic sewing skills.

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For this craft I gathered the following supplies-

  • stiff paper plates
  • watercolor paints
  • paint brushes
  • assorted pony beads
  • floss threaders (the kind used for braces) or craft needles
  • scissors
  • craft thread in assorted colors
  • paper piercing tool
  • scotch tape

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I painstakingly cut the centers out of each plate beforehand, and pierced ten holes on the outside of each circle. Some of the older girls added more holes, but the ten holes were plenty for the little girls to create a crisscross pattern. Later, at least three holes were added to the bottom of the dream catcher, for the hanging threads.

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I showed the girls how to tie the last bead off.

The girls started by painting their plates and chose their thread color(s) and beads while the paint dried. The floss threaders were definitely easier for the girls to use than the craft needles. I highly recommend them! I helped the younger girls with their threading, but for the most part the girls managed rather well. Some chose a single color for the entire center, while others chose two or three colors to weave. The ends of the thread were taped to the back of the plate. Easy peasy!

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Although not shown here, a loop of thread can be added to the top of the dream catcher, for the purpose of hanging.

♥ Does your child have a dream catcher hanging over their bed? I feel like this summer is just flying by. I hope all of my readers are enjoying their summer (or winter if that is the case). Thank you so much for visiting my blog today. ♥

 

Posted in Craft Corner

Summer Kid Craft- Beach/Ocean Scenes

To kick off my little girl mini craft parties for July, we created ocean and beach scenes with watercolors, sand, and embellishments.

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This was one of my favorites. The creator wanted an ocean floor scene

This craft was especially fun to create in my beach themed craft room. This room is my calm, happy place, and the little girls just love it, although I have heard there needs to be more pink. 😉 We have set three simple rules to keep chaos at bay when we craft:

  1. Keep the mess at the table.
  2. Share the supplies.
  3. Clean up after yourself.

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For this craft I gathered together:

  • sturdy paper plates (dinner size) with no pattern
  • watercolor paint
  • assorted paint brushes
  • clear plastic cups for water (I reuse these)
  • craft sand (I had pink, blue, white and a little bit of beige sand on hand)
  • miniature seashells and pebbles (I also had a package of colored starfish)
  • Elmer’s clear glue
  • scratch sheets of paper for testing colors or doodling

Those were the basics. I also pulled out of my craft cupboard:

  • ocean themed stickers (I had mermaids, seashells, and sea creatures)
  • ocean themed paper punches (I had a seashell, fish, seahorse, dolphin and shark)
  • colored paper for the punches or anything else
  • glue sticks
  • scissors
  • Another option is to find a free printable ocean creature coloring page online and reduce the size to scale if necessary.

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The only instructions I gave the girls was to paint the ocean first, and let it dry, before applying the sand. We found the easiest way to glue on the sand was to sponge brush the glue over the entire area and then gently shake the sand over the glue.

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For the past couple of weeks we’ve been trying to come up with a fun name for our craft club. We haven’t came up with any winners yet though. If you have any ideas, I’d love to hear them.

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For the snack I planned ahead and had my son make up berry blue jello in clear cups. Once it set (after approx. three hours) the girls added crushed graham crackers to represent sand, whipped topping (sea foam?), and Swedish fish. I didn’t think to do this, but Nerds can be added to the bottom before the jello to represent pebbles. I did find some neon sour octopus candy and added one at the bottom of some of the jello cups before setting. It was kind of creepy, haha, but the girls told me it was yummy.

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My son created this scene. 🙂

♥ Are you and your kids crafting this summer? I hope you’re staying cool! Temps here this week (northern Utah) are in the 90’s. Perfect timing for my AC to go out in my car, right? The mechanics have yet to find the leak so I’ve got to take it back in one week for a recheck. I’ve also come down with a fun head cold. Ah, the fun surprises of life. Thanks for visiting. Happy July! ♥

Posted in My 52 Stories

A Journal’s Purpose (Part 2 of a Journaling Series)

What is a journal?

A journal is a book of remembrance, a personal timeline, an autobiography, a family history.

A journal is a collection of your life stories.

Marcus posing for Liahona devotional pics (16)
Encourage your children to keep a journal. They will appreciate it when they are adults.

A journal’s purpose is to give you a place to record any and everything that has to do with being YOU.

It’s never too late to start a journal or pick the habit back up again.

Get a notebook, a journal that will last through all time, and maybe the angels may quote from it for eternity. Begin today and write in it your goings and comings, your deepest thoughts, your achievements and your failures, your associations and your triumphs, your impressions and your testimonies.

                             ~Spencer W. Kimball

I have five basic tips for keeping a journal:

  1. Set aside a specific time each day (once a week at the very least) for journaling.
  2. Write from your heart and let your thoughts flow out. Just be yourself.
  3. Give specific details of your most significant memories. Details might include location, time of day, your emotions, people involved, goals set and accomplished.
  4. Date each entry with today’s day, month, and year. If you are writing down a past memory, make sure you also include that date or timeframe as best you can remember.
  5. Write both first and last names of people you mention, even family members and close friends.
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Don’t forget to include the “weeds” of your life- your mistakes, trials, and fears. We learn and grow through opposition.

Sometimes you may feel like your life is too mundane to record, but there is something to be said for the ordinary. Isn’t it comforting to know others have been where you are now?

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Your journal will be one-of-a-kind, just like YOU!

There are many benefits that come from the habit of journaling:

  • Detailing your most significant moments in words will preserve them for all time.
  • The act of journaling has meditative qualities, especially if you choose a quiet setting. You will often feel relaxed, reflective, and at peace as you journal.
  • Journaling is therapeutic. Keeping a journal can be similar to talking to a counselor or a friend who listens attentively and never judges.
  • Journals become a type of legacy for your posterity.
  • Journaling may help you recognize and appreciate your blessings. In a later post we’ll explore the joy of keeping a gratitude journal.
  • When you handwrite your journal, your memory may improve. That’s because the act of taking pen to paper helps us remember important things.
  • Journaling may help you truly discover yourself. You will get to know yourself better as you journal.

♥ If you keep a journal, what tips and benefits would you add? Stay tuned for more posts in this series. Thanks for visiting my blog. ♥

Posted in Craft Corner

Summer Kid Craft- Leis

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I’ve been hosting little girl mini craft parties all month long. This week the girls in my crafting club made leis. I thought they turned out pretty cute.

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My daughter’s garnet ornament

These craft parties all began with a Christmas craft party my daughters and I hosted back in December 2015 with five neighbor girls. They made birthstone ornaments, snow globes, and decorated sugar cookies.

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These fairy gardens were a big hit with the girls.

That party led us to host more craft parties, usually around a holiday or in the summer months, and with each party we held, another girl or a couple more girls would join us. Each party would be three to four hours long and include lunch or dinner. And they were a blast for everyone involved.

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Painting kindness rocks was our first summer craft.

This summer I decided to host mini craft parties once a week in June. They were two hours long and held in my new craft room. I chose one simple craft per session and included a snack, which the moms of the girls provided as a contribution. I had to hold two separate sessions, one in the morning and one in the afternoon to accommodate all of the girls as my craft room comfortably seats 10 at my table. This turned out to be a brilliant idea because I started this summer with 13 girls and I now have 19 girls in my craft club.

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We ended June’s crafting with lei making and these are the supplies we used:

  • Fabric lei flowers. I bought mine off Amazon. It was an inexpensive party pack of 30 Hawaiian-style leis. Their quality isn’t great, but good enough for this craft.
  • Paper straws in a variety of colors and patterns. You can find these in the party section of Walmart or Hobby Lobby and also at Michael’s.
  • Pony beads in a variety of colors. I just grabbed what we already had on hand.
  • White string
  • Sewing/crafting needles
  • Scissors

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My preparation for this craft included taking apart the party leis and separating the flowers by color. I then cut the paper straws by fourths or fifths so that each straw came out to be 1.5″ to 2″ long. I cut the string to 40″ lengths. That seemed to work out just right for a medium-length lei after tying off the ends.

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I counted approx. 16 flowers for each flower-straw-flower lei.

I had each girl tie a bead at the end of her string as she was beginning and most of the girls used a sewing needle to thread the flowers, beads and straws onto their strings. Most of the girls chose a flower-straw-flower-straw pattern, and some girls inserted beads after each flower or on each end of the straws.

♥ The finishing touch was having the girls make cards for each lei recipient. These leis and cards were given to grandmothers and cancer patients in our neighborhood. Some of the moms were willing to take their daughters to deliver these in person. ♥ From feedback received by some of the girls and their moms, I’ve decided to continue my weekly craft parties in July, with a break for the holiday week of the 4th. ♥

 

Posted in Craft Corner

Summer Kid Craft- Paper Sack Nature Journals

This month I’ve been holding weekly two hour craft sessions in my beach themed crafting room with several neighbor girls. I hold a morning session and an afternoon session because I have as many as 14 girls showing up to craft and my table comfortably seats 10.

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This was my favorite journal cover.

So far we’ve painted kindness rocks and miniature crates. This week the girls decorated their own summer nature journals. This is a great example of how easy and inexpensive kid crafts can be. I have done elaborate kid crafts before, such as fairy gardens (I’ll have to post on that another day), but this craft reminded me how simplicity can be golden. I honestly think this has been my favorite craft yet with “my” girls. 🙂

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There are only four main supplies needed for paper sack journals: lunch sacks, blank paper (such as copy paper), something to bind the two together (we’ll get to that in a minute), and coloring tools, such as markers, colored pencils, and/or crayons.

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I also supplied a few nature-themed stamps I had on hand, black ink pads, some nature-themed stencils, and washi tape (some of the girls used washi tape to cover the staples and give a book a bound look).

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I did not take pictures of the assembly, which my daughter and I did beforehand (to save time). For each journal we simply folded a lunch sack in half. That made the cover. We then folded two 8.5 x 11″ sheets of paper in half length-wise, and then into fourths. We cut along the longest folds, leaving the short folds in-tack. That gave each journal eight blank pages. We cut the edges with scallop scissors, centered them inside the sack and then stapled it together.

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Another option for binding would be using a hole punch and then threading ribbon or yarn through it. By the way, eight pages, with one paper sack, proved to be just enough for our stapler to handle.

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Here’s an example with the washi tape. The dragon fly was made with a stencil, water color pencils and sequins.

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My sketch of a Lilly

After the girls decorated their journal covers, inside and out, I sent them outside for a nature hunt. We made up our own nature hunt and chose descriptive words such as soft, hard, smooth, bumpy, fast, slow, high, low, red, exquisite, etc. The girls found items to fit each category and some wrote them in their journals, while others chose one item to observe and sketch. We then discussed some of the items they found.  I suggested that the girls write the date on their journal page.

♥ Have you ever made a paper sack journal? My daughter told me that for some of her girls camps, they were given paper sack journals to record their camp experiences. So this could be something your kids make up before a family vacation. And it’s so simple! ♥