Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Fun and Easy craft to do with kids!

There is nothing like a bored child and summer can sometimes bring this about.. All that free time... We have a huge gap to fill when our little ones are not able to play with their friends daily while burning off all that energy at recess. here is a fun idea:

Yesterday we did a fun and simple craft at camp that kept the kids busy and happy for hours. You can do this with just one child but the more kids you get to play, the better.

Restaurant fun:

First we took file folds and cut them in half to make two 5.25 x 8.25" menus. Then each kid named their restaurant and decorated the front of the menu to reflect the name and kinds of food they served . Next they decided on three or more dishes they would serve and listed these inside with pictures and prices.

Once their menus were complete, I put out a ton of misc. craft supplies and all kinds of things from the recycle bin. To do this at home, you can also peek into the garage and cupboards to find random gardening, auto, household bits and office supplies that you don't need or use (i.e. - box a piece of jewelry came in, stray hair rollers, single socks, clothes pins, an old jar of ponds cream that you are never going to use...).

Next I put everything on display for the children to consider, then told them to make their three dishes from the array of random items. This was ahoot to watch. They made pizza from a box, covered it with red fabric from an old T-shirt and topped it with feathers for cheese, bits of foam for mushrooms and small circles of paper for the pepperoni.

Once all the food was made, we set up little tables (you can use real furniture or make your own from boxes, pillows and a tin can with a flower in it.) We printed out order sheets on the computer from here and took turns playing guest and server. It was such a fun time! The kids kept wanting to add items to their menu so they would run over to the supplies and whip up a new entree.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Mini city under construction

I teach art and creativity at St. Timothy's school as an after school enrichment program and during summer camp for 10 weeks. The program is called "Create and Innovate." One of the most infamous activities we do is create a city out of recycled items. We started this activity on Monday.

It begins with a "city planning meeting" where we determine the scale of our city with action figures and dolls. Both Barbie and a Transformer are too large. This year we have settled on a game piece of a knight in armor (with sword drawn) as our point of reference.

Next we discuss what we want to have in our city: school, church, gas station, hotel, park, houses, stores and a jail are some of the buildings we are currently working on. A Bat Cave was suggested so we will see if we have room for it today.

Each child gets building bucks to use towards buying supplies and services

Monday, July 4, 2011

hello creativity!

I haven't even looked at my sewing machine since Christmas, but yesterday I needed to mend something and the next thing I knew I was making shorts from an old pair of jeans and embellishing with Heather Bailey fabric. It was such a nice feeling to quietly stitch and openheartedly consider what to do next.
Sometimes I think it is a shame that I scrapbook for a job. I just don't tinker creatively anymore. I have all kinds of excuses: I don't want to make a mess in my studio; I need a change of scenery; I feel like If I'm feeling creative, I should be working; or I don't want to start something I won't be able to finish.. RIDICULOUS!
They say the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem so I'm making a public announcement of my intention to change. Any objections? I didn't think so.

Actually, it has been a pretty artful summer thus far and I didn't even have to instigate my own momentum. Between the twin's scrapbooks I'm doing for my long term client, the projects I'm preparing for and teaching in the art and creativity classes at camp and my undeniable need for some sort of outlet, I have just "found" myself standing at the drafting table, adhesive in hand.
A big part of my drive comes from the awesome projects I've been doing with my cricut. I love that machine. I never thought I would get into using a lot of commercial products in my work but here I am, having a great time with layers, clean edges, shadows and cartridges. I think the jump start has been awesome in helping lay down that first piece of paper. Often, it is that first step that gets in my way to actually "DOING" something.
I used to think that the cricut would cause my work to look cookie-cutter-drone-ish and that the process of putting everything together would be like painting with numbers. This is so off base. My cricut pages and cards usually take much longer to assemble that "free hand" work and it is easier to know when to stop and do a know project. I cannot tell you how many unfinished pages I have in page planner sleeves that are missing a title or embellishments because I can't find what I'm looking for.

Now that I am doing some of my own work again, I will have something to post/ share on my blog. I'm hoping the next post will be very soon!