Wednesday, February 29, 2012

* Pink Penguin Felt Barrette Party Favors, Birthday Banner, and Penguin Birthday Party Invitations

I made these little cuties as party favors for 
"C"s 5th Birthday Pink Penguin Party.

I ordered the little pink penguins from this Etsy shop.
I found the ribbon wrapped barrettes at Michaels craft store.
Then all I did was glue the felt penguins onto the barrettes with glue gun.

Easy and cute! 
Just what the birthday girl wanted.

Check out the cute invitations I ordered from Leanne's Plum Cake Parties Etsy Shop.
She also made our adorable birthday banner this year!
Thank you Leanne!

Pink and Green Mama

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

* C's Penguin Party Homemade Favor Bags

For C's 5th Birthday Penguin Party this month,
we made a few homemade party favor bags to 
go with our theme. They were super easy and only took a few minutes to whip up.

We used plain pink and purple gift bags from our local Michaels craft store.
I cut out a few penguin shapes from black construction paper.

"C" punched out orang hearts with my scrapbooking paper punch
for the beaks and feet. We used pieces of a paper doily for the "tummy"and glued on googly eyes.

Penguin Bags and Party Hats waiting for the big day...

Penguin party bag and goodies.
We filled them with stuffed penguins found at our local 5 Below Store,
felt penguin masks that I made, homemade felt penguin barrettes,
whoopee cushions and little penguin crayons, plus a couple of 
penguin coloring sheets printed off the internet. 

Pink and Green Mama

Monday, February 27, 2012

* Semi-Homemade Birthday Party Hats

For "C"s Pink Penguin themed 5th birthday party this month,
I made semi-homemade party hats.
She asked for "fancy party hats" so that's what I tried to make for her.

I started with a package of 8 party hats from the Dollar Tree
and some pink feather boa material from Michaels craft store.
The doilies and cupcake wrappers were already in our house.
You can find doilies like this in the cake decorating area of any craft store.
I believe the pink cupcake wrappers were part of a valentine set from Dollar Tree.

Then, I made little cut paper penguins and 
punched circles out of scrapbook paper from my art studio stash.

I glued each paper penguin to a circle of scrapbook paper,
then glued that to a flattened cup cake wrapper. 

Then it was time to start gluing on the feather boa edges.
Note to self, cutting out feathers makes a HUGE mess, check out my jeans.
You should have seen the floor! Have a broom and dustpan on standby.

My messy table.
Decided to add party hats to the penguins - cut them out of pink paper.

Glued the feather boa trim to the bottom edge of each hat with my glue gun.
I love my silicone glue gun pad/heat mat (got it at JoAnne's craft store) 
and yes, I always glue on the floor because it's the easiest outlet to reach!

The hats weren't quite fancy enough so I glued a doily around each cone
then I added the penguins (all with my glue gun - super fast!) 

Front view of a finished 
Pink Penguin Party Hat!

Side view. 

The birthday girl modeling her party hat. 
More 5th birthday Penguin Party details to come....

Pink and Green Mama

Sunday, February 26, 2012

* Felt Penguin Mask

For "C"s penguin party she wanted penguin masks so I made some.
I didn't use a pattern, I just cut out some black and white felt free-hand
and trimmed it until it looked right. Then I cut out some yellow felt for the beaks.

I used double triangles because she wanted to open and close the beaks.

I stitched the white and yellow felt to the black then added a bit of black elastic to the back.
To cut out the eye holes I traced a small plastic lid onto the felt and used it as my
guide to carefully cut out the eye holes with sharp sewing scissors.

Super easy, they took me less than 45 minutes to whip up
and I had all of the materials on hand.

"C" and her buddies loved them. They were mama penguins 
taking care of stuffed baby penguins in the igloo fort. 

More Penguin Party details coming all week!

Pink and Green Mama

Thursday, February 23, 2012

* Watercolor Basket - Making Art Supplies Accessible For Children

My girls love to paint with watercolors and they seem to have 
the world's worst timing to ask me if they can paint with them. 

The supplies were scattered around the art studio in places they needed my help to reach. 

For example they would ask for watercolors when I was in the shower,
or when I was cooking dinner and had raw chicken all over my hands, 
or when I was "indisposed" (hiding in ) the bathroom... you get the idea!

I knew I needed to come up with a solution but it's one of those things that I kept
forgetting about until I was busy and they asked again. 

Finally, I came up with a solution during the first week of my on-line 
Playful Learning Spaces class with Mariah Bruehl. 

Put everything in a pretty basket 
and leave it out where the kids can find it.
Why did it take me this long to figure this out?! 

I used a basket I already had in the house. 

I filled it with: 
two tablets of watercolor paper, 
watercolor paints and brushes,
two glass jars (that can be filled with water at the sink),
a sharpened pencil, 
a fine tip and a small line permanent marker,
small roll of paper towels, 
and some water-soluble colored pencils. 

Note: The salt shaker we use for watercolors is sitting on a table in the art studio
where they can reach it as needed but it's not in the basket
(I was worried it would tip over in the basket.)

The girls "discovered" their new watercolor basket as soon as they got home
from school that afternoon and have been using it almost daily ever since. 

Evening watercolor session while mom cooks dinner.


Pink and Green Mama

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

* Washing Baby Dolls Water Play

Baby doll washing has always been a popular water play activity in our house. 
I first posted about it in this baby washing post.

I recently set up "C" with a baby washing station in our kitchen.

We dedicated this cute heart print storage box from Target
as our "bathtub" it also doubles as storage for the baby washing gear .

We have some small bottles of real baby shampoo and baby powder.
A mini bar of hotel soap and a few sponges.

I also set up the girl's play drying rack to hang out wet towels and baby doll diapers.

When "E" got home from school that afternoon, she wanted to wash a baby right away
she wasn't too happy that I took her photo playing with her little sister!

My little mommy "C" and her freshly washed baby doll.

Note: I'm on stand-by to watch my niece
while my Sister-in-law delivers my nephew (any day now!)
Guess what I've got waiting in a gift bag to surprise her with?
Yep, a plastic baby doll (from Target) a little doll sized wash tub,
and two travel size bottles of lavendar baby wash and powder.
We will be washing pretend babies while we wait for the real one to arrive!

Pink and Green Mama, MaryLea

Sunday, February 19, 2012

* President's Day Portraits: Mixed Media Art Lesson for Kids

I used to make these portraits with my kindergarten art students for President's day every year. 
This lesson is so cute and easy you could make it with older students too!

First, we would study some famous painted portraits 
of George Washington.

This one from the National Gallery of Art's collection was my go-to poster of choice. 

Then, we would start with a piece of "skin" colored construction paper. 
I always ordered the "multi-cultural" spectrum pack 
and let the kid's choose whichever color they wanted from the pack. 

We would sketch lightly in pencil then go over it in black Crayola marker.

I would model how to draw the facial features and the kids would follow along. 
No two portraits turned out alike but they
kids were much more successful with their final projects this way. 

I was never one of those, "watch and copy me now" teachers, if they 
did it differently I didn't correct them, I just modeled and it helped a lot of kids. 

Starting with a large oval (egg) for the face, we would draw two footballs for eyes. 
Add circles for the pupils and irises. 

A big nose. 

Straight line for the mouth.
Then a little smile underneath (bottom lip) 
and two moutains on top (top lip)

Don't forget eyebrows and ears!

Then, we would add shadows with a darker
tan or brown crayon (hollows of cheeks, side of nose)

and highlights with white crayon (bridge of nose, middle of forehead)

Then, color in the eyebrows, lips, and pupils with crayon.

Finally, we would cut out the head.
Glue it on a sheet of blue or red construction paper.
Add a black construction paper shirt/shoulders.

Cut a triangle wedge of paper doily for the lace shirt accent.

We would glue cotton balls around the outside of the head as a white wig! 
Sometimes, if we felt really festive (and had enough time) we'd add 
birthday party hats!

Happy President's Day!

Pink and Green Mama

Friday, February 17, 2012

* Ballerina Paper Dolls With Cupcake Wrapper Skirts

This project first appeared this summer on The Crafty Crow blog,
it was a guest post by another blogger named Merilee from Mer Mag blog
She made adorable paper doll ballerinas as part of the summer book and a craft series
with the book "Chasing Degas."

It was such a fun girlie craft I knew my little ballerina "C" would love it. 
They used crepe paper (party streamers) for their tu-tus, 
I substituted with cupcake wrappers!

But, I just drew a bunch of ballerinas free hand with colored sharpies
on white card stock paper. Then we got to work cutting them out.

"C" was excited when I showed her the cupcake wrappers 
and explained that she could make skirts for the dancers.

She colored some dolls and asked me to color some with her. 
She added skirts to all of our dolls. 
Cutting and gluing the cupcake wrappers to make skirts was her favorite part. 

I put all of the ballerina making materials in a basket and left it on the art studio table.
It's been fun to find little dancers around the house!

One of "C"s sweet ballerina paper dolls. 

I love how she made a leotard out of a cupcake wrapper to match the tu-tu.

"C" even made one into a card for her ballet teacher!

Pink and Green Mama

Monday, February 13, 2012

* A Real Life Valentine's Day Love Story.

What's Valentine's Day without a good love story?
Today's post is from my archives but it doesn't mean any less to me today 
than it did when I first wrote it.  Every day is a gift. 

17 years ago, on February 13th, 1995,
I got a phone call in my Virginia dorm room from my mom.

She told me a boy from our church, was recovering from surgery.
It was in our church newsletter and they were asking people to send him
get well cards/notes.

He was the older boy from church, (the one she knew I thought was cute.)

He was the one I started sitting up front to watch every Sunday singing in the choir.

He was the one who played beautiful trumpet solos
in front of the painted scenery I was forever painting for summer VBS plays.

The boy with a head full of curly dark hair and green eyes who made me blush,
but I was never brave enough to actually talk to.

He. had. cancer.
He was only 20 years old.
He had a malignant brain tumor, an anaplastic astrocytoma.

He had just had brain surgery over Christmas vacation
to remove it and was back at school undergoing radiation treatment.

I wrote down his address on a scrap of paper on my desk.
Something told me, a small voice inside my head,
that this was the start of something that would change my life.

I bought a card at the campus bookstore.
I wrote a note inside, something along the lines of,

"You don't know me, but we attend the same church
and we went to rival high schools..."
"I hope you are doing well,
I'm here if you need a friend to talk to." etc.

I put it in the outgoing mailbox, not realizing the date.

The card arrived later that week, it was postmarked February 14, 1995.
He wrote back. (this was before we had email accounts)
We continued writing back and forth for the rest of the school year,
throughout his treatments and recovery.

We became really good friends.
We agreed to meet and hang out when he came back home to Virginia in June.
It was love at first sight. We were both smitten.

We did not know what kind of future awaited us.
We knew we were in love.
We did not know what kind of prognosis he would have.

We knew we were best friends.
We knew we wanted to be together for as long as we could.

We have been married for 13 1/2 years.

We have been together 17 years, since that fateful first lunch date....
and really, if I'm being honest,
he's had my heart since I mailed that first Valentine's Day Get Well card.

He still writes me beautiful love letters.
He still gets an MRI every year to recheck his noggin.
He is still cancer free.

He is my best friend, the father of our two beautiful daughters,
the best daddy in the world, my partner in crime, my one and only valentine.

Happy Valentine's Day my love,
I am my beloved's, and my beloved is mine.


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