Tuesday, November 22, 2011

 Homemade Stockings from old Sweaters and Skirts.

I saw this picture  and thought it would be fun to make my own stockings from my old sweaters.  Here's what I did:

 1.  Made a pattern.  I got one of my knee socks and traced around it to make a big pattern (there are a lot of free ones off the internet you could just use).  Thanks to Carol, she helped me get started.

2.  Cut and sew right sides together.  The striped stocking below is mostly of the arm of a sweater.  The two on the right were from old skirts and have a zipper running down the backs.

 3.  I used fusible webbing (had never heard of it before this project) to add a little stiffness to the stockings.  I just asked the JoAnne's worker about it and bought some.  No sewing required, just cut and iron!

 4.  Decorate.  Click HERE for tutorials on how to make the flowers below.

Click HERE for a tutorial on how to make this flower.  I used this to cover up a problem area on my stocking.


Sunday, November 13, 2011

Kid-Made Ornaments.

The kids have their own little fake tree where they got to go to the 99 cents only story and pick out beaded strings and tinsel. They picked out balls to take home to decorate. With all the different colors (they even chose the lights), it looks like Christmas threw up on the tree (yes, we've already decorated for Christmas). They loooooove it! Carleton and I also found some gorgeous ornaments for our real tree we're going to flock-can't wait to put it up but we don't want it to die before Christmas. We had red and silver and decided this year to have only white and silver. We found the most beautiful ornaments at the Dollar store-crazy huh. But seriously, they're better than the ones Martha Stewart is selling this year.

Looking for ornaments kids can make? Here are some using Christmas balls:

1. Paint. We used the kids paint that look like markers. I put washcloths in the kids' tins so they wouldn't roll around.

2. Glitter. Make a design or dots (easy for kids) and pour glitter over. I love these turkey roaster pans (I think that's what their called-never made a turkey) that catch all the messes-got it from the dollar store.

3. Glue. Apollo said this guy ran into a snowflake and it stuck to his mouth. How cute.

Here's one of Annie's ornaments.

4. Puff Paint.

Apollo said this is Santa. He said Santa will like this ornament the best because it's of himself.

This was probably Annie's (age 2) favorite to make. She beaded pipe cleaners. I fastened the ends for her to hang up.

Another idea. Clay. We just used some playdough the kids had. We left them out for a few days to dry. The kids molded a lot by hand and then we brought out cookie cutters. We put holes in the top while the clay was still moist so we could put ribbon through them and hang up when they dried.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

 Letter E.  E is for Elephants.  

To print off an animal for every letter go HERE.  I printed mine on card stock.  Annie's artful letters are being hung in the toy room.  They look beautiful together.  I'll take a picture soon to show you.

For a cute elephant color by number go HERE.  The Confessions of a Homeschooler blog is the first place I always go, print what I want, and get extras from other places.  Jodi, so glad to here these ideas are helpful. 

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Sarah Morris emailed this parenting article to me to post.  Enjoy.  Thanks for the article, Sarah.

Encourage Your Child's Scribbling: The Beginnings of Writing

Submitted by Sarah Morris on behalf of Primrose Schools- the leaders in preschool and kindergarten education.

Children observe adults writing daily in numerous ways, from scribbling notes to filling out forms. Moreover, this observational curiosity often leads to a desire to begin writing themselves. Although their early writing attempts are commonly referred to as 'scribbling,' this can be consider a nascent form of legitimate writing. Typically, the first conscious effort a child makes is to write his or her own name. From an adult's point of view, this attempt may ostensibly be random scribbling, yet upon closer examination the patterns in each scribble will vaguely resemble letters. Such a moment is cause for celebration, the first step of a long journey to communicating with the written word.

Nevertheless, it behooves a parent or teacher not to emphasize precise letter formation at this stage. A pedantic approach to penmanship will send the message that mimicking how adults write is more critical than the act of communication. It is important to create a distinction between penmanship skill and writing as a way to express their emotions. Furthermore, chastising a child can foster feelings of frustration and inadequacy with relation to writing. It helps to remember that many young children are still developing the coordination and motor skills required to write properly. Accepting where they are in their development can help parents and teachers guide their letter formation gently.

A healthy writing atmosphere will help encourage children to communicate via stories and messages. By giving them nothing more than paper, writing utensils, and positive reinforcement, children will show enthusiasm in demonstrating their writing ability.

• Writing tools - Keep pencils and paper everywhere. By having ready access to the tools of writing, children will be more inclined to practice wherever they go.
• Reading - Reading to your child can help acclimate them to letters. The juxtaposition of pictures and text also helps them associate words with bright, energetic pictures.
• Imitation - Children have a tendency to mimic their parents. Make a habit of keeping lists, writing notes, or using a whiteboard to list daily reminders. Watching you write will trigger their curiosity. If they inquire about writing, show them how to hold a pencil and practice forming letters. If they struggle to hold a pencil, they can also try writing letters in the air with their hand.
• Email - These days, traditional writing is being replaced by keyboards in a variety of ways. As the most important aspect of writing is communication, you should encourage a child to practice writing with whatever method they enjoy. Sending an email to a relative is and familiarizing them with the keyboard is another way to encourage writing development.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Letter of the week.  Letter D.  

 I printed off some things from here that I liked again.  To avoid any confusion, when you want to print stuff off her blog, click on what you want from the alphabet page, click on the blue button labeled "download now", wait the 20 sec, then click on "download file now" (not Click here), open it, and then print.  The "click here" button takes you somewhere weird when all you want to do is print.

 D is for...Dots

 ...DECORATE then DELIVER.  We decorated the cupcakes left over from Apollo's party and then Annie and I took them to our neighbors. 

 ...DRESS UP.   She loves to dress up.  I got out my makeup too-what girl doesn't love jewelry, makeup, and dresses? (I guess I don't sometimes).



 Go here to get letter searches for all the alphabet letters.