Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Teaching Good Behavior.  

There are some behaviors we saw in our kiddos that we wanted to change and behaviors we wanted to teach them.  This activity came into my mind as an answer to prayer.  It's been over three weeks since we did it and we've seen great results.  My kids are 4 and 3 (and 6 mo.).

Here's how to play our version of Red Light Green Light:
1.  Kids draw a scenario out of a hat.
2.  Parents act out (model the behavior) and the kids raise a circle -green if the behavior is good and red if the behavior being shown is not good.  Then, after discussing how the red light scenarios could be changed to green light scenarios, the parents act them out again.
3.  For the next week, have the kids act out the scenarios (same thing, if they choose red ones, we talk and they react them out).

For some examples of what we did: Carleton pretended to be his friend Mike and the kids practiced looking at him in the eye and answering questions (they can be shy sometimes).  I've seen a total improvement.  They totally talk to people and look at them now.  Carleton and I also pretended to whine in the back seat of a car, share our toys, meet new friends at kids club etc.  We acted out ways to have non-potty humor etc.  We practiced more serious ones where the kids practiced shouting "NO" and running and telling us.

The kids love this game.  It's one thing to talk about good behavior but a whole other thing to see it modeled for them and for them to practice.  I was trained by a company that uses brain research to help kids learn better, and they really emphasized modeling behavior.

We will definitely play this as a family as new issues arise.  It was fun and super effective.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

DIY 3- Tiered Platter.  So. In. Love.

 My friend is throwing a tea party/book club party to celebrate the book Divergent.  I told her I would make a platter for it.  I'll put little finger sandwiches on it.  This will be fun to set out for parties, just for display, or for other special occasions.  If you want to do your own...here's how:

1.  Go thrifting.  You'll need three different plates, all different sizes and two glass cups.  They don't have to match because they will be painted.  You can use a short candlestick or candle holders (I don't know what they're called) to separate the plates.  You can find a lot of glassware at the dollar store...or in your own cupboard.

 2.  Wash.  I threw everything in the dishwasher to get any finger oils or anything else off.

 3.  Sand.  Sand all over so the primer will stick (you don't need to sand the inside of the cups or parts that won't be painted.  Make sure to sand all the parts that will be glued very well.


4.  Glue.  Trace where you want to place your cups (or candlesticks) with a marker-you can use a ruler if you want it perfect.  You'll paint over it so you won't see it later.  Use glass glue to glue the pieces together (I just asked for help at Home Depot to find some glass glue).  The kind I found was even dishwasher safe.
 Here's what it looked like just before painting it.

5.  Paint.  I did two coats each of primer, paint, and the gloss sealant (they were all spray paint).  I turned it upside down to get everything.  I got a primer that sticks to plastic.  I didn't see one that claimed it would work for glass, but that would be even better.



 I loved how this turned out so much that I went back to the thrift store to make more.  I'm not going to do the 3-tiers, just a cup or candlestick underneath with a plate on top (platters).  I'll post them when they're finished.


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Painting Door Handles.

When we moved in, all our door handles were mismatched-mostly gold and some shiny silver.  I looked online and found that others had painted their door handles.  One site (the one I followed), said they had done it three years ago and they still looked great.  It's a lot cheaper than buying new door handles for the whole house.  I love love love how they turned out.  Here's what I did:

1.  Scrub.  Apollo loved taking off all the door pieces-he liked doing a Daddy type job.  I scrubbed all the pieces with an SOS pad-the kind that already have the soap in them anyway.  It's good to get all the oil and grime off.

2.  Sand.  This process takes awhile.  I sanded until I could feel that the surface was roughed up.

3. Prime.  Use a primer spray paint that says it will stick to metal.  I did a couple coats.  You have to spray from different angles to get everything, let them dry, and flip them over.

 4.  Paint.  I used Rustoleum's satin nickel.  I loved the look and textures.  It was so easy to use-no drips and made them look so beautiful.  I was super impressed.

5.  Seal.  Spray a sealant/gloss on the top to prevent chipping and to make sure the job you did stays for a long time. 

I'm so happy with how they turned out, I'm ready to tackle the metal part of some lights and other random gold parts in my house.