Thursday, September 27, 2012

* Fall Apple Theme Sensory Box. * Again.

Fall is in the air and I couldn't be happier, it IS my favorite season!
I love wearing jeans and layers, cheering for football, sewing and crafting,
sipping warm coffee at the bus stop, and having the windows open in the house again.
Goodbye humidity and mosquitos, I will not miss you.

Today, I'm sharing one of my favorite sensory boxes from last year.
Remember this one? I made this cute little apple sensory box
for C's preschool classroom for their apple unit.
Think we might need to set it up again in the playroom, I asked the girls a few weeks
ago if they were done with sensory boxes (hoping to clear out my storage shelves in the garage)
and they both said, "No!" they still love them (they're 9 and 5 by the way...)
So, it looks like we'll still be making and playing with our boxes
for a while longer -- that's fine by me.

Made apple trees out of toilet paper tubes and felt.
The "apples" were mini red pom-poms that stuck 
nicely to the felt leaves for apple picking.

The tiny wooden buckets/ apple barrels were a craft store find.
The stick broom was from a zen sand kit from Dollar tree but you can 
make your own tiny brooms/rakes with sticks and a glue gun.

The cinnamon sticks add a lovely scent to the box and the 
play apples are a fun addition for counting and sorting.

Happy Apple Picking! 

Pink and Green Mama

NOTE: I frequently get asked questions about how we manage our sensory box
materials. I keep most of my "stuff" in ziplock bags
in a few storage bins out in our garage on some shelves.
For more information read my Sensory Box 101 Tips and Techniques post.

Friday, September 7, 2012

* Setting Up The Kindergarten Classroom: Reading Pillows, Bulletin Boards, Curtains, and More!

I told you that one of my best friends is "C"s kindergarten teacher this year.
She was also "E"s kindergarten teacher. 
She is wonderful with the kids and her teaching gets better every year.
It is so fun to watch her work and her assistant teacher is like a mommy away from home,
"C" is madly in love with both of them and I call them her school mommies.

I offered to help set up and makeover their classroom for the new school year.
It's my way of helping out and it's fun for me since I miss setting up my own classroom.
We started by rearranging the whole room and getting rid of her big desk to maximize space.
It made a huge difference!

Then I made pillows for the reading corner. 
I've had this cute little cloud pillow floating around in my brain for the past 2 years
and this was the perfect opportunity to make one!

The cloud is made from blue flannel from my stash and 
the face is embroidered felt. The ribbons are from my stash. 
I found pillows on sale for $2.50 (!) at Walmart and used them as the stuffing.

I made some other fun pillows and convinced Mrs. P to pick up this fun 
Rainbow dot pillow at Ikea -- it's perfect right? 
I need to go back there and get one for my house too! 
She also needed some new curtains so the girls and I made them together.

Here they are in progress on my art studio floor. 
Yes, I have a giant table in the middle of the room but I always end up 
pinning my fabric projects on the floor!
I let "C" help me run the sewing machine and "E" was my ironing girl.

It was her first time ironing.
The only time I iron is for art and craft projects and for sewing - 
yes, we wear wrinkled clothing. 
She did a great job and loved it!

See this box? Not the most beautiful thing but I should have taken a "before" 
photo -- just a plain yogurt box from a discount store. 
It needed a facelift - it holds sentence strips in her supply closet and they needed to 
be sorted by season so I made these cute paint chip labels. 
So I wrapped the whole thing in cute, colorful duct tape from Walmart's craft department.

I just used scrapbook sticker letters and taped on the labels with clear packing tape.

These cabinet doors were boring so I taped up paint chip samples.


and Green! 

Yes, I'm friends with the guys in the paint department at my hardware store.
Don't know if I should be proud or embarrassed by that -- I do spend a lot of time there.

Here's "C" skipping around the rug, you can see the reading pillows 
and the curtains hanging up in the window -- so fun and colorful.

Here's my other favorite project. 
I made over her bulletin boards with fabric and paint sample chips.
I made a second boarder with the paint samples and her regular bulletin board 
borders -- I'll be doing this again if I ever go back to teaching. 

I also made a little paper pennant for her magnetic white board...
"E" made the rainbow tissue pouff. 

Here is her classroom library with my bulletin boards
and the new rugs we got at Ikea. Cute, right?
It sure was fun getting ready for 
a new colorful school year!

We love these great ladies! 
Thank you, Mrs. P and Mrs. A.

Pink and Green Mama, MaryLea

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Saturday, September 1, 2012

* Homemade Fairy House

I've posted our homemade fairy house before but that was in 2008,
 when I had about 10 readers.  
Today, I'm posting newer photographs of what is one of my children's favorite toys. 
It's also a favorite of every kid that ever comes over to play at our house!

Here's the original post, 
 if you want to see a tiny 5 year old "E."

Geoff and I built the house for the girls as a Christmas present. 
We screwed the various parts together with Geoff's drill and drywall screws.

The natural "floors" were made from three irregular tree "rounds"
ordered from Walnut Hollow (the 3 circles cost me under $7.00) 

We made the staircase with a bag of "Wood Craft Rounds"
The base for the whole fairy house was an unfinished pine table top from Lowes.
The columns came from tree branches around our neighborhood and an
old rotten up-cycled patio table umbrella pole. 

There's a small basket attached with a wooden spool and yarn pulley
that the fairies use to transport their supplies up and down the various
levels of the house -- I didn't get a good shot of it from this angle - sorry!

Love the clothes lines the girls made with yarn 
and tiny wooden clothespins from the craft store. 

My dad made the little wishing well with twigs and a small wooden cup.
The twig furniture came from a set I found at Five Below, 
I've gone back several times since and never found it again. 

Pink and Green Mama

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