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preschool

Nature Tie Dye Shirts

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Nature Resist Tie Dye t-Shirts - These t-shirt designs were made from rocks, leaves, twigs & other things found in nature. This is a fun spring or summer art activity & craft for kids or for adults

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We have been enjoying the beautiful weather these past few weekends & spending most of our time outdoors. We have been experimenting & playing with different nature arts & crafts. Last weekend, we brought some watercolor paper outside & laid some leaves & rocks on top & used spray bottles to spray the paper with a mixture of food coloring & water.

nature painting with food coloring paint spray

It came out lovely.  I loved the effect & wanted to try it on t-shirts. We tried to recreate the effect to tie dye t-shirts. They came out great, but after we washed the shirts, the food coloring washed out. The food coloring didn’t take, but we were not going to give up on our idea. We found a non-toxic tie dye spray kit on Amazon & hoped that this would do the trick.

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Nature Resist Tie Dye t-Shirts - These t-shirt designs were made from rocks, leaves, twigs & other things found in nature. This is a fun spring or summer art activity & craft for kids or for adults.

The directions on the package did not require that we prep our shirts, but I soaked them in a half vinegar & water mixture to prep them nonetheless. I rang our shirts out & then brought them outside & laid them out flat on cardboard. I slid a piece of cardboard between one of the shirts to keep the color from bleeding through to the other side. My daughter wanted her color to go through,

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We gathered rocks, leaves & branches to create our designs. My daughter & I went to work on placing our design elements.

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Once we had all of our pieces in place, we began to use the spray. My daughter wore an apron, but we forgot to put on gloves. It is recommended to wear them because it does get messy. Luckily, the spray washes off of skin very easily.

IMG_7344 Nature Tie Dye Shirts . These t-shirt designs were made from rocks, leaves, twigs & other things found in nature. This is a fun spring or summer art activity & craft for kids or adults

We did one side & let it sit out in the sun to dry. The packaging recommends to let the shirt sit for an hour, but we flipped after just a few minutes.

Nature Tie Dye Shirts - These t-shirt designs were made from rocks, leaves, twigs & other things found in nature. This is a fun spring or summer art activity & craft for kids or for adults

We made heart designs out of rocks on the opposite side of both t-shirts.

Nature Tie Dye Shirts - These t-shirt designs were made from rocks, leaves, twigs & other things found in nature.. This is a fun spring or summer art activity & craft for kids or adults Nature Tie Dye Shirts - These t-shirt designs were made from rocks, leaves, twigs & other things found in nature. This is a fun spring or summer art activity & craft for kids or adults

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Nature Tie Dye Shirts - These t-shirt designs were made from rocks, leaves, twigs & other things found in nature. This is a fun spring or summer art activity & craft for kids or adults

When we finished spraying the other side, we let it dry in the sun for about 1 1/2 hours. The dye sets in the dryer after about 20 minutes. I also ironed it before washing to help heat set it a little bit more. Once the dye was set, we washed them as normal & then air-dried the shirts. The color held up beautifully. My daughter was so proud of her shirt. She couldn’t wait to put it on & show it off.

Nature Tie Dye Shirts - These t-shirt designs were made from rocks, leaves, twigs & other things found in nature. This is a fun spring or summer art activity & craft for kids or adults

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nature painting for kids with food coloring paint spray. Spring & summer art activities

Plastic Easter Egg Cars

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A great way to use up those left over- make Easter Plastic Egg Cars - the kids will love these

Easter will be here & then over before we know it. Many homes will be dealing with the aftermath of Easter grass, jelly beans & all of those left-over plastic Easter eggs. I for one love those left-over plastic eggs because there are so many fun things that you can do with them.

Check out a few other ideas:

Plastic Egg Floating Fish

Teletubbies Weeble Wobbles

Plastic Egg Daddy Long Legs

A great way to use up those left over- make Easter Plastic Egg Cars - the kids will love these

We decided to make little egg cars. Here is how.

What you will need:

Extra large plastic eggs

Toothpicks

Buttons

Sharpie

Glue gun (As always use caution with a glue gun.)

Optional: small beads or Ditalini pasta pieces

Directions:

Draw a simple car design on the egg with a Sharpie.

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You can do this next step in a few different ways.

  1. Use a hot glue gun to glue 2 small beads to each end of a toothpick or (in our case we used painted Ditalini pasta because we use them as beads often). Make sure to leave room to slide the button on.                                              OR
  2.  You can just use a dab of glue, instead of a bead, on either end. This will keep the button from sliding around.

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Slide in a button on each side & put a dab of hot glue on the end to keep the button from sliding off. Do not glue the button though, let it spin loose. Repeat with another toothpick.

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Glue both sets of button wheels to the bottom of the plastic egg. Let the glue dry.

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My daughter could not wait to get her hands on these.

She quickly started cutting up paper to make roads & I jumped in to help. We used chalk to draw the street lines.

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We glued paper down for the grass around the roads too.

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My daughter wanted to have races with our cars.

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For some reason, she always won & she waved her victory flag every time.

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Our little egg mobiles turned into a fun project day as she wanted to add in houses & schools and make a whole city to go with our cars.

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Finger Painting With Rubber Thimbles

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Finger painting for kids with rubber thimbles - art for children

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My daughter has an art app that she loves on her IPad.  She used it a lot over our travels last week. I watched her draw & paint and stamp shapes with her fingers. Watching her stamp hearts & flowers onto her electronic canvas gave me an idea. My idea was to put foam shapes on the end of rubber thimbles  & use them as finger stamps. I cut out 4 simple shapes & used hot glue to glue them to the tip of the thimbles.

Rubber Thimble Finger Stamps

My daughter & I experimented with the different shapes. We put them on our fingers & stamped away. The heart shape worked the best. If you applied heavy paint it came out looking like a wax seal stamp, whereas just a light dab of paint provided better shape.

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Mai lost interest in the actual shape of the stamps & began to just paint with the thimble. We had a box of a dozen rubber thimbles, so we tried something new. We loaded thimbles on each of her fingers & dipped them all in different color paint. She ran all of her thimble covered fingers around a piece of paper to create a painting that reminded me of a Jackson Pollock.

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The thimbles were a little bit large on a couple of her fingers, so they would flip off from time to time, but she would just stick them back on & go.

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When she was finished, it left us with a bright & colorful piece of abstract art.

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Spin, Roll & Count Exercise Game

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Spin, roll & count exercise game. Fun for the whole family.This game was an amazingly huge hit in our home. My daughter did n

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The past few months have been stressful ones for our family. We have sold a home, remodeled our new home & are still living in a construction zone. With all of these changes & with how busy we have been, we have not made the best food choices & have let our physical fitness kind of slide. My husband & I have packed on the pounds and decided that we needed to get back into shape. We began a new workout regime & just started a squat challenge. Our daughter jumped right in & wanted to join us in getting a little exercise.

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Cleverly, inspired by our exercise, Mai picked up a die & rolled it and told me that she was going to do arm rolls. She rolled a 5 & did 5 arm rolls. She told me to roll & I rolled a 4 & she told me to do 4 jumping jacks. This sparked a new game & a fun idea.

I took my daughter’s idea & added another element to it.

What you will need:

A paper plate

Split pins

Cardboard

Construction paper

Hole punch

Sharpie

Glue

Die or dice

Directions: Cut an arrow out of a rigid piece of cardboard. Use a hole punch to poke a hole at the end of the cardboard arrow. Push a split pin through the hole & the center of the paper plate. Secure it loosely so that the arrow spins freely.

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Cut 8 squares out of construction paper & use a Sharpie to write down fun exercises.

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Glue them to the edge of the paper plate.

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To play:

Spin your exercise wheel. See what it lands on.

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Roll your die or dice.

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Do your activity the amount of times as the number that was rolled. Our daughter hopped like a frog 6 times this roll.

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We all took turns & played together as a family. We did jumping jacks, frog hops and toe touches.

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Our daughter could not get enough. She got a kick out of watching us frog hop & dance like ballerinas. We had fun & promised her that we could play again tomorrow.

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Footprint Puffin

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Footprint puffin craft

 

We just returned from a family vacation in Iceland. We had a fantastic time. We love to travel & it has been wonderful watching our daughter inherit our love. While we were in Iceland, we took in the breathtaking landscapes, swam in the Blue Lagoon & took a trek to the top of the Langjökull glacier and then got to walk inside of its ice cave. We created beautiful memories & have so much fun.

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The ice cave of Langjökull glacier, Iceland

While shopping in Reykjavik, we came across a lot of puffin merchandise. I was fortunate enough to have seen the puffin on our last trip to Iceland, while Mai was still in my belly.

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Puffins were out of season on this visit, so Mai did not get to see one, but she still did get a little souvenir.

Puffy the puffin is our daughter’s new favorite stuffed animal. She has carried him around everywhere since our return.

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Her new friend was also the inspiration for our newest footprint craft.

I painted her foot in black & white as shown & then pressed it onto a piece of blue paper.

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I painted a white oval shape over the heel for the face & added in the beak & feet with orange.

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I added a touch of yellow & black to the beak & painted in the eye to finish it off.

Footprint puffin craft

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Clay Fingerprint Keepsake Ornaments

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    These clay fingerprint ornaments are perfect for any occasion. They make a great keepsake gift for grandparents and mom and dad.Clay Fingerprint Keepsake Ornaments for the family - a sweet and easy arts & craft idea and keepsake that the kids or the whole family can make together

*This post contains affiliate links* Some photos have been updated since original post.

My daughter has inherited a lot of hand-me-down books. We have so many that we don’t even know what we own. For a very long time, my daughter has only read a few of these books. Many just sat there collecting dust, but recently she has been diving into them all. We came across a few art books the other day. We found a few great “how to draw” tutorials and also came across a cute book filled with fingerprint crafts.

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Northern Lights With Watercolors

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Pretty Northern Lights paintings with watercolors - art & painting for kids

This week our family & I are heading to Iceland for vacation. My husband & I have been before & love it there. We are excited to take our daughter to see the geysers & walk the ice tunnel, but our main reason for going is to try our luck at seeing the Northern Lights. There is no guarantee that we will see them, but we are hopeful & eager. I have been telling our daughter all about them & showing her photos on the computer. “Oooooh, that’s pretty mama!” They certainly are. They also made a great subject for a painting with our new homemade watercolors.

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Homemade Watercolor Paints

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Homemade Watercolor Paints with household ingredients

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My daughter & I do a lot of painting. Up until now, we worked primarily with acrylics. We have a palette of watercolors, but they never seemed to transfer enough color, so when we wanted a watercolor effect we just watered down our acrylics. This worked, but was a hassle & made a big mess. I decided to take a stab at making our own watercolors at home. I found a simple recipe on WikiHow. I doubled the recipe & made a slight alteration because it called for corn syrup, which I don’t typically have in the house. I substituted sugar instead.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup of baking soda

1/4 cup of vinegar

1 tsp. sugar

1/4 cup cornstarch

1-2 drop of food coloring

Directions:

Mix the baking soda and vinegar in a large bowl. This will cause a fizzing reaction. Mix it until fully dissolved & then add the sugar until dissolved as well.

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Add the cornstarch and stir well. The mixture kept clumping strangely, but it does soften when you stop mixing and will pour smoothly.

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Pour the mixture into an ice cube tray, giving each compartment an equal amount of mixture. We filled them about halfway.

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Mix in a drop or two of food coloring or however much it takes to get your desired color. Stir using a knife. We used Americolor Student Food coloring.

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There colors are bright & vivid and a little goes a long way. We only needed a drop in each compartment.

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After we mixed all the colors. We ended up with a total of 10 colors. We set them out to dry overnight. In the morning our colors had hardened. It may take longer depending on the room temperature & humidity. Do not store anywhere too humid.

We dove into our new paints the next day. They worked beautifully & the colors were lovely. My daughter loved the colors and they were so much easier to use than the store bought ones that we had at home.

DIY homemade watercolor paints. Easy to make with simple ingredients found in your kitchen

Stayed tuned tomorrow for the beautiful project that we created with our new paints.

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DIY homemade watercolor paints. Easy to make with simple ingredients found in your kitchen

Paper Plate Miss Spider Craft

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Miss Spider's Tea Party Inspired Paper Plate Craft For Kids

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Lately, we have been reading a larger than usual amount of books. My daughter has a lot of new books that she wants us to read together and then of course all of her old favorites that she still wants to hear every day. One of those favorites is Miss Spider’s Tea Party. We read it almost every day.

MissSpiderTeaParty

As we were reading a few nights ago, my daughter asked if we could make our own Miss Spider, so yesterday, that is what we did.

What you will need:

Paper plate

Paper bowl

Yellow paint

Black, yellow & red construction paper

Black pipe cleaners

Green googly eyes

Markers

Glue

Directions:

Paint the paper plate & bowl in yellow.

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Dab yellow paint onto 8 black pipe cleaners.

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Cut out spots & a jagged stripe for Miss Spider’s back out of black construction paper & cut her hair out of red.

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Glue the spots & stripe on the paper plate.

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Cut a triangular nose out of yellow construction paper. Glue the hair, nose & googly eyes to the bowl. Draw on a smiley face & eyelashes.

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Mai pointed out that Miss Spider also has white freckles on her face & she grabbed a white marker to add those on too.

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Glue the pipe cleaners in place for legs. I used a glue gun for the legs. (Operate caution when using a glue gun. Not recommended for small children.) Glue the paper bowl head to the paper plate body. Mai wanted hers to look like Miss Spider on the cover & I chose to make mine like one of the illustrations inside the book.

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My daughter also reminded me that Miss Spider needed a cup of tea, so we cut 2 cups of tea out of construction paper too. Mai was so excited about her finished Miss Spider.

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Paper Plate Kid's Craft inspired by Miss Spider's Tea Party

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