Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Sketch Saturday #196

For my card on Monday, I used this week's sketch at Sketch Saturday. I decided it was time to make a masculine birthday card so I pulled out my animal stamps. I did lots of inking on this one. I stuck pretty close to the sketch.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Card Patterns #154

This card started with a scrap from my March calendar page, but I ended up not even using that because I decided it was too bold for the rest of the card. I used this week's Card Pattern for my card and rotated it 90 degrees. I used my Botanicals Cricut cartridge for the flowers and hummingbirds and watercolor pencils and a water pen to color them. I also used Walnut Stain Distress Ink on everything to soften it.

1 sketch + 2 challenges= March Calendar page!

I used a Sketch Support sketch again this month for my calendar page. I love how many photos I can fit on a two page spread with these sketches! You can find the original sketch here. Sketches in Thyme is holding a bonus open challenge week where you can submit any layout using a sketch!

Finally, the current Scrap your CRAP challenge is two use at least 3 different stamps on a project. It took a little effort, but I ended up using 4 stamps on this layout: the journaling spots, leaves, and two for the butterfly on the left hand page. I used the Cricut to cut out the flowers (Walk in my Garden) and journaling spots (Sentimentals). I also stitched the stems on the flowers. I don't necessarily like taking the time to hand stitch on my layouts, but I really like the texture it adds. I had a lot of fun playing with different products and adding little touches here and there to this layout. (In case you were wondering, the left hand page is going on the calendar this month!)

Unscripted Sketches: Happy Birthday card

Here is my card from yesterday. I used this week's Unscripted Sketch. I really enjoy working with these sketches, they really help me use up my scraps! The patterned paper is Bo Bunny Flower Child. I decided the background needed some pattern too, but I didn't want it to go all the way to the edge so I used masking tape around the edges and then stamped the flowers. The die cut flower is from the "Walk in My Garden" Cricut cartridge.

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Unscripted Sketches and StuckOnUSketches

For today's card I used this week's Unscripted Sketch and the current die cut challenge at StuckOnUSketches. This week at Unscripted Sketches they are also having a "piggyback challenge", which means in addition to the sketch, you must do stitching. I used some embroidery floss to stitch around my scalloped heart.

The die cut challenge at StuckOnUSketches is Love. I used my Cricut and "Sentimentals" cartridge to cut out the word "love" for this card. The heart was also cut using the Cricut and the "Doodlecharms" cartridge.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Mojo Monday- Love

Here is my card for today. I used the sketch from Mojo Monday for this card. I was digging through my random die cuts looking for something that would work with this sketch. I found these pieces from a sheet of K and Company paper. Because of the size of the pieces, I had to make a larger card (this card is 8 1/2 x 5 1/2). It was fun to play with the larger canvas! Here are the sketch and the card:

Cooking with Cricut Birthday Challenge

This week's challenge at Cooking with Cricut is to use a cake, cupcake or balloon cut on a project. I made this birthday card with some scraps I had laying on my desk from a previous project. I used the birthday cake from "Stretch Your Imagination."

This card also marks the start of my annual Lenten project. The past four years I have made a card each day for Operation Write Home. This organization collects cards and then ships them to soldiers overseas so the soldiers have handmade cards to send to their family members back home. This year, I am doing something a little different. I have decided to take a class at Big Picture Classes called Scrapbooking Your Faith, which starts March 1st and runs 4 weeks. I plan to devote a large amount of time to the class, so I won't be able to make a card every day. For the days of Lent before and after the class, I will make a card per day. For the duration of the class, I have set the goal of 4 cards per week. I will be sharing my cards and projects from the class right here!

30 Days of Hands on Play Challenge: 29 and 30

We did our last activity yesterday: sticky art! For this activity, I used clear contact paper and cut two pieces the same size for each child. I pulled the liner off of one of the pieces and laid it sticky side up in front of them. I supplied them with tissue paper and patterned paper scraps. They pressed the paper onto the clear contact paper. Once they had covered a majority of the sticky side, they chose a color of glitter and we sprinkled that in the gaps. Then I placed the other piece of contact paper on top.

A few tips:
-If you don't like glitter, skip that step. I don't mind glitter, but that step got really messy!

- Leave a border around the edge with nothing on the contact paper, that way it will seal everything in.

-If you forget to leave a border (as we did) you can seal the piece by using clear tap around the edge.

The kids really had fun with this and even Will stuck with it long enough to cover his piece!

Once they were all finished, I hung them in the kids' bedroom windows.

My task for day 30 was to think about what I learned.

Ellie really enjoyed having this time with me. She was always quick to tell me to join in the fun. She really liked knowing at the beginning of the day what was coming. She's a planner. She most enjoyed the craft projects, which really didn't surprise me.

Addy really enjoyed the sensory activities. I've always known she is a child who enjoys touching stuff and getting her hands dirty, and this project confirmed that. She can spend an hour plus playing in water, or making paint prints. She also encouraged me to sit down and play along with them.

I was surprised to find out how much Will could actually do. He participated in almost every activity and stuck with it. He LOVED helping with cooking, which I initially didn't think he was ready for. I have been making an effort to include him when we do baking and cooking together. I was also surprised by how much he enjoyed the craft projects. He really stuck with them and did a great job for a 1 1/2 year old. I think part of that is he likes to be a part of whatever is going on and so he really enjoyed this time where we all played together.

I was reminded how much fun it is to just play. I think I had forgotten it the busyness of taking care of the kids and the house and just doing my own thing. I have been trying to spend more of my days focused on playing with the kids and less on what I want to do. I think we are all happier for it!

Now all that is left is for us to continue playing together. I think our project tomorrow will be to make a jar to put slips of paper with the activities into. We will be using the activities from this challenge and I will add other activities I come across. Thank you for joining me on this journey and I hope I have inspired some of you to try something new with your kids.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Practical Scrapers: Border Punches

This coming week's Challenge Me Tuesday feature at Practical Scrappers is border punches. The challenge was to use 2 or more border punches on a layout. I have a handful of border punches that I love to use on my pages. I feel they add so much interest to the edge of paper. I used two punches for the patterned paper strips across the center of my layout. I have two other places on my layout that have shaped borders as well: the side of my journaling block and the felt piece under my title. While I didn't use a punch for either of these, you could easily do so. I used K and Company Berry Sweet paper. I really like this line, the colors and patterns are so fun. Those cute little sock monkeys are cut from one of the sheets! I really had fun making this page and it is one of my current favorites!

Friday, February 17, 2012

30 Days of Hands on Play Challenge: 26-28... I think

I meant for us to complete our activities this week, but alas, it hasn't happened. We did 3 days worth of planned activities and one day of impromptu activity.

Monday our activity was: make prints with household objects. We went around and gathered several toys and kitchen utensils and brought them to the table. It was then that I realized we had no tempera paint in the house... I grabbed a few bottles of acrylic paint and just decided to deal with the messy clean up. Will got to paint in just a diaper because I wasn't willing to deal with THAT much mess. :)

The kids had a blast dipping the toys in the paint and then making prints on their paper. They each covered several sheets of paper with paint and only stopped because I made them so we could eat dinner. Clean up was a pain, but I remembered to buy tempera paint when we were at Michael's on Wednesday!

Tuesday was our impromptu day. The girls were busy coloring in coloring books and I was about the join them when Will woke up from his nap. We decided to just color that day instead of doing the planned activity.

Wednesday we role played. We pulled out the kitchen toys and cash register and did some shopping and cooking. The kids had fun dressing up in their aprons and pretending to make food. Addy made a tomato and chocolate soup for me and Ellie made vanilla pudding.

Yesterday's activity was to play with a box. There is an activity in a Sesame Street craft book Ellie has to make animal (or monster) feet out of Kleenex boxes. We had finally saved 4 boxes so we decided it was time to make the feet. I pulled out our new paint (which turned out to be finger paint so it wasn't as opaque as I had hoped, but worked anyway) and we went to work painting Elmo and Grover feet. Will painted the box a little, but Ellie ended up finishing it while Will occupied himself with painting the table cloth (why didn't I use the table cloth on Monday with the acrylic paint?? I don't know...).

We let the boxes dry and today the kids had fun walking around in them. Oh and Will eventually did get around to playing with a box...

Ok, next week we WILL finish this!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Valentine #3- Sketch Saturday

I used the current sketch at Sketch Saturday for this card. I used my Cricut to cut out the hearts (Doodlecharms), circles and scalloped circle (Cricut Classic Font). After I stamped the bear on the large circle I felt like the circle needed more so I used some swirl stamps around the edges to add some interest. To color the bear, I used watercolor pencils and a water pen. Finally, for the sentiment, I stamped the words in white ink and then used a dry paintbrush to brush some shimmery powder over the wet ink.

Have a Happy Valentine's Day!!

Valentine #2- Cooking with Cricut and Unscripted Sketches

Here is another Valentine I made for some challenges:

The Cooking With Cricut challenge for this week is to make a Valentine using black and a brad. I used the Storybook cartridge for the heart o this card.

I also used the current sketch at Unscripted Sketches for this card:

Mojo Monday- Valentine

I have been busy making a few Valentines. I normally don't make Valentines, but I have 18 month photos of Will that need to be sent to family so I figured this would be a good time to send them out. I used this week's Mojo Monday sketch for this one:

I used my Cricut for the hearts (Doodlecharms), bracket paper and envelope (Sentimentals).

Friday, February 10, 2012

30 Days of Hands on Play Challenge: 23-25

The kids went to stay with Grandpa and Grandma yesterday, so we just had 3 days of activities this week. We will be completing the challenge next week, I can't believe it!

Monday's activity was: go on a hunt. I used some robot blocks as our item to hunt for. I started by having the kids hang out in one of the bedrooms while I hid the robots around the living room and dining room. I tried to hide some in more obvious places than others so Will could have a chance to find some. He did find a couple, with help, but I'm not sure he really understood the concept and he lost interest quickly. After they found all of the robots, Addy, and then Ellie took turns hiding the robots.

The girls really had fun with this. For the last couple of rounds, I was working on dinner and the girls were just playing so they weren't keeping track of how many robots were hidden so they were all found and we were finding robots in random spots for a few days. :)

On Tuesday, our activity was play with junk. I cleaned out the kids' sock drawers that morning and recalled that when I was a nanny about 10 years ago, I had done a project with the kids where we made snakes out of old pantyhose. I had several pairs of tights from the girls' drawers that were stained and pilly so I decided to do this project. The kids stuffed their snakes with mismatched socks and an old magazine. Once the snakes were stuffed, I tied a knot in the end and the kids decorated them with felt scraps.

If you are interested in doing this with your kids and need some tights, let me know. I had a few extra pairs of tights and would happily get them to you!

Finally, on Wednesday, we did small world play. I had heard about using masking to make roads on the carpet a while back and I used this opportunity to try it out. We got out some toy cars and animals and drove around on the roads and did a little problem solving when there was an animal blocking the road.

I think the kids had the most fun, however, when we pulled up the tape and they played with the balls of tape!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Layout Tag

I participated in a Layout Tag/ Chinese Whispers last month on the Club CK message board. The idea is that the first person uses a sketch to create a layout, then passes on their layout to the next person on the list, they make a layout using the previous person's layout as inspiration and then pass their layout on as inspiration, and so on. This time I was the 4th person in a 5 person chain. Here is my layout:

You can see the whole chain here. The original sketch featured a large circle element, but the person before me had eliminated it. I unknowingly added it back in when I decided to use the large sun paper. I initially didn't have it as part of my design, but upon remembering I had it, added it to the layout because I felt that the colors and shape fit the colors and theme of my page.

In other news, my "Chef Addy" layout is one of several layouts featured today on Practical Scrappers featuring "A Touch of Black."

Saturday, February 4, 2012

30 Days of Hands on Play Challenge: 22+

On Thursday our activity was: do an investigation. This was a bit of a challenge. I had to come up with something to investigate that would appeal to a 5-year-old, 3-year-old, and an 18-month-old. We decided to explore sinking and floating in water. I put some water into a tub and had the kids gather several items from around the house that could get wet. We dropped them in one at a time, making a guess (and talking about the word "hypothesis") as to whether it would sink or float. Then I tried to explain to them a little bit about density. We also tried putting 2 items together to see if they would sink or float.

The kids had a lot of fun with this activity. Every time we ran out of items, Addy would ask if she could go get some more. We ended up with quite a few items in the tub, but it was fun!!

On Friday, we did our own activity: decorate masks. This one came from a request from a friend. My friend Sarah and her husband own and run a theatre and she had asked if we would be interested in helping make some props for their upcoming show. She needed paper masks that looked like they had been colored by children. I jumped at the chance to help and give my children a fun activity at the same time. This activity ended up having our participation split as I did all the prep work; drawing and cutting out the masks, and the kids did the coloring later.

They had a lot of fun and they turned out pretty cool!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

30 Days of Hands on Play Challenge: 19-21

Oops... I just realized I should've posted yesterday. I guess this is going to be a long post...

On Monday our activity was: make a craft for someone. I grabbed some of my and the girls' scrapbooking supplies and we made Valentines. The girls really love making cards. Recently, every time I have needed to make a card for someone, they have needed to get in on the action too. They loved this activity. Will really had fun with it too. Addy helped him glue some paper on his card and he colored on it.

Yesterday our activity was to play dress up. We have quite a bit of dress up clothes, but I realized yesterday that not much of it is "appropriate" for Will. See for yourself...

The kids put on some dress up items and we went about our normal play. The kids didn't seem all that interested in acting like what they were dressed up as, they just wanted to be dressed differently.

Today's activity was: make music. We grabbed some metal and plastic bowls and some metal and wooden spoons from the kitchen. I turned on some music and we banged away. I'm not really sure the music was necessary, the kids and I made so much noise we couldn't really hear it anyway... WE had to cut this activity a little short, but the kids had such a great time. Will was smiling this big the whole time: