Monday, November 29, 2010

* Countdown to Christmas: Homemade Family Advent Calendar

Last year, my daughters and I 
to countdown to Christmas.


Each envelope contains a daily family activity
to help us slow down and enjoy 
the month of December. 
We can't wait to set it up again this year.


In case you want to make your own, 
I wanted to post again this week so you would
 have time to make one before December 1st!

Here is our Harris Family Advent List


1. Candlelit bath for the girls!
2. Make Paper Snowflakes and Decorate the Windows
3. Make a CD of Christmas Music for the playroom/mom's minivan.
4. Rootbeer Floats!
5. Bake something yummy with Mama
6. Make Christmas Cards for Friends/Family
7. Have hot chocolate with marshmallows.
8. Make a pipe cleaner candy cane or wreath.
9. Make a Paper Chain.
10. Use puppets to tell a Bedtime Story.
11. Have an indoor picnic.
12. Family Game Night (Wii, board games, puzzles?)
13. Make and Decorate a Gingerbread House.
14. Dance and Sing to Christmas Music.
15. Set up the Mouse Nativity.
16. Make a Christmas Craft.
17. Make a Christmas Ornament.
18. Dress Fancy for Dinner tonight.
19. Fashion Show with Clothes made out of gift wrap!
(Recycled from opening presents with grandparents)
20. Make and Hang Edible Gifts/ornaments for the Birds and Squirrels.
21. Surprise a neighbor with an act of kindness.
22. At Home Pedicures!
23. Watch a Christmas movie with popcorn.
24. Pick your Favorite Christmas book for mom (or dad) to read aloud.
25. Open Presents!

Happy Countdown!

Fondly,
pink and green mama, MaryLea



Saturday, November 27, 2010

* Nature's (Free!) Art Supplies



During the crisp Fall Season,
while the squirrels and birds are busy
gathering seeds, berries, and nuts for the long Winter ahead,
my girls and I can be found collecting our own
supplies around our neighborhood. 

We are busy collecting and gathering free art supplies! 


Leaves
(pressed and dried in phone books)



Acorns  (Mostly Acorn Caps)

Walnuts,
Pine Cones,
and Dry Pine Needles.

With visions of projects like:

Pom-Pom Acorns
(Click Here for a link to the post)

Pine Cone Elves
(Click Here for a link to the post)


Leaf Lanterns

Happy Nature Crafting!

Fondly,
pink and green mama

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

* Thanksgiving Traditions: Turkey Bowl, Handprint Tablecloth, and Family Fun.


Today, I thought I would share a few of our favorite 
Thanksgiving Day Traditions.

One of our favorite activities is our annual Turkey Bowl,
a flag football played on the street in front of our house.


It's a multi-generational event.
My husband's family always hosted one on the street they grew up on...
we've continued the tradition with our own daughters. 


 Friends, Family, and Neighbors gather for the big game!


I mark the end zones (and the 50 yard line) with white flour.


Fresh cider, doughnuts, and hot coffee are served on our front yard.


After hot showers/baths, we head over to Grandma and Grandpa's house
for the yummiest dinner ever (cooked by my dad the chef)

He's a jack of all trades -- he MADE that cute, little, 
glowing pumpkin village on their sideboard.


Then, we all take turns signing the cotton table cloth at my mom's house. 
(we use sharpies and put a magazine underneath so we don't ruin the table!)

It has notes and drawings  from each person present at Thanksgiving Dinner every year. 

First hand prints, Hand Turkeys, Poems, Gratitude Lists...They're all on there. 


Signing the table cloth, Thanksgiving 2009.


Big sister, "E" adding an elaborate drawing!


Tracing my niece's hand for her very FIRST Turkey Day last year. 

That table cloth has first thanksgiving hand prints from all three little cousins, "E", "C", and "A" 
That tablecloth is priceless. 

What are your favorite Thanksgiving traditions?
Gobble, Gobble. 

Fondly,
pink and green mama




Saturday, November 20, 2010

* Preschool At Home: Clothespin Turkey Fine Motor Practice


Remember our button practice turkey? He needed a friend.
I saw a clever activity like this on a preschool blog (Montessori Beginnings) with a
 paper plate turkey and feather clothespins. 

I loved the feathered clothespin idea so of course, I had to whip out my glue gun
the other night and make some of our own. 
This happened while I was cooking dinner -- we seem to do a lot of last minute crafts this way! 


I also drew a turkey for "C" on a piece of stiff brown felt
with Sharpie markers


Great fine motor, pinching, practice for my favorite 3-year-old!
You can see my favorite 7-year-old in the background sitting at the piano
(she was playing "Over The River and Through The Woods" for us!)


Warning: Blurry Turkey Action Shot!
 We made two turkeys; one to keep at home and one for my daughter's preschool class.



Gobble! Gobble!

Fondly,
pink and green mama


Friday, November 19, 2010

* Indian Corn Bubble Wrap Printmaking




to send to family and friends that wouldn't be with us to celebrate Thanksgiving. 

I thought I'd re-post this craft
in case you want to recreate it  with your own children or in your classroom this year. 
Start with some scraps of plastic bubble wrap.


Paint with layers of orange, yellow, and red washable tempera or acrylic craft paint.


Press your painted bubble wrap 
onto sheets of brown, orange, yellow construction paper. 
(Brown paper grocery bags would be cool too!)  

Keep some baby wipes or a wet rag handy to clean up painty fingers and hands as you work!


After the paint has dried,  trace your child's feet to make the corn cobs
and let them cut them out. 



Happy Bubble Wrap Printing! 

Fondly,
pink and green mama, MaryLea

Thursday, November 18, 2010

* Preschool At Home: Fine Motor Practice Felt Button Turkey


 

After seeing these on several  blogs, 
inspired by the original, ADORABLE button turkey made by My Montessori Journey
for her classroom... I just had to make one.

In fact,  I actually made three!

Stayed up till the wee hours sewing 3 of these little button turkeys last week. 

One for my daughter. One for her preschool teacher. One for my niece. 


Felt,  buttons,  and embroidery thread.

I love cute crafts that are educational and fun
and practically free when you have all of the supplies on hand!

Gobble, Gobble, Gobble! 

Fondly,
pink and green mama



Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Pink and Green Mama Crafts: Homemade Gifts Kids Can Make From the heART eBook


The holidays are fast approaching and it is the perfect time to start
crafting and creating homemade gifts from the heART.


My daughters and I usually make our own gifts for their teachersgrandparents, cousins,
aunts and uncles, and school bus drivers!


Now you can create your own simple, heART-felt gifts at home (or in your classroom!) with my latest FREE eBook, "Homemade Gifts Kids Can Make From The heART"


15 Complete Projects
in a 53-page PDF Formatted Craft e-Book
is FREE at my Teachers Pay Teachers Store! 
Click Here to Download! 

These simple, but meaningful projects come with:
* Complete Supply Lists
* Full-Color Photos of Actual Projects
* Detailed Step-by-Step Photo Directions

All 15 projects featured in this e-Book are gifts we have made 
and shared with the people we care for. 


These projects are not just for Christmas.
Several of them work for other special occasions
like birthdays and anniversaries, etc.


The lessons are meant to be made together with your child.

Younger children, ages 2-4, will need a lot of assistance
but older kids, ages 5 and up, will be able to do a lot of the work by themselves!



These projects are simple and do-able
even for the craft-phobic!



What could be better than a gift made with love, given with love, and created with inexpensive supplies or materials you already have on hand?!


The PDF e-book is designed 
to be printed out
(I recommend using card stock paper and assembling it in a binder)
or you can read the directions directly from your own home or classroom computer screen. 


This 53-page Homemade Gifts
 Kids Can Make e-Book
is best suited for elementary-aged children (ages 5-11)
but can also be used with preschoolers (ages 3-4)
This FREE Homemade Gifts Craft e-Book
includes
15 Complete Craft Lesson Plans,
a compilation of some of my best homemade gift
lesson plans with 3 brand new (never published on my blog)
Homemade Gift Idea Lessons. 

To download the PDF, click HERE!
These craft lesson plans are copyrighted by MaryLea Harris (pink and green mama)
they are intended for personal or classroom use, not for re-sale or reproduction.
Thank you! 


Happy Homemade Crafting!

Fondly,
pink and green mama

Monday, November 15, 2010

* Mod-Podge and Glass Dried Leaf Lanterns


'Tis the Season for Pressed Leaf Lanterns! 




 I've seen these lanterns all over the bloggy-sphere lately!

I thought I would share more photos 
and details of our leaf lantern making project
from my 35th Birthday Crafty Brunch Rainbow Party. 


We collected leaves ahead of time and pressed them/dried them in phone books
for several days. 

The thinner, skinnier leaves seemed to work the best 
on the glass vases. 

I picked up the glass vases at Walmart in the craft department but you can also 
find them at the Dollar Tree or rummage in your own cabinets for old
flower vases. 


I love this craft because children AND adults can do it!

(Warning: If you're wearing your wedding rings while crafting be careful not to get 
any Mod-Podge in the stones!) 


 Coat the OUTside of the glass
container with a generous layer of Mod-Podge
then carefully press dried leaves/flowers into the goo...

Carefully paint another layer (or 2 or 3) on top of the leaf/flower to 
seal it to the outside of the vase. 


"E" made this vase for her desk with dried flowers we saved from the spring/summer.



 Warm candlelight glowing  on a chilly fall evening -- 
* a perfect combination. 

Fondly,
pink and green mama


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