Melted Crayon Christmas Decorations

Melted Crayon Christmas Decorations

Melted Crayon Christmas Decorations

Recently we made these pretty Christmas baubles using sharpies, a laminator and this free printable. We had some templates left over and a lovely box of bright crayons to use, so we decided to experiment with them. This is how we ended up with Melted Crayon Christmas Decorations!

Melted Crayon Christmas Decorations

You will need:

Melted Crayon Christmas Decorations Melted Crayon Christmas Decorations Melted Crayon Christmas Decorations

To make the decorations:

  1. Print and cut out the printable Christmas decorations (including cutting out the centre circle). Older children can do this on their own, younger children will need help.
  2. Dab a little bit of glue on the back of each Christmas bauble and stick it inside an open laminating sheet. The glue is optional – it just helps to keep the templates in place while you are working on them.
  3. Use the grater to create small flakes of crayon.
  4. Sprinkle a small amount of crayon inside each bauble template. Be careful not to over fill as the crayon may leak out into the laminator (see the template filled with pink, purple and orange on the bottom right of the photo above? That’s too much crayon… I speak from experience – eeek!).
  5. Close and laminate the sheet then cut out each bauble.
  6. Punch a hole in top of each bauble and thread with the ribbon

These Melted Christmas Christmas Decorations can also be used to make cute gift tags for family and friends.

Why not try making these cute Christmas Baubles too?

Kid-made Christmas Baubles {guest post from Octavia and Vicky}

Which Christmas traditions have you been enjoying this festive season?

*Thanks to Micador for sending us a free set of oil pastels to try out. I was not paid to write about Micador products.

Want more fun ideas for kids? Just download your copy of the Three to Five Playful Preschool ebook. Watch the 30 second video and buy your copy now or find out more.


Three to Five Playful Preschool ebook - 25+ Playful Preschool Activities

DIY Striped Frames

DIY Striped Frames - hand made by kids

Hand made gifts from kids is one of my favourite treats. Since becoming a parent I’ve always looked forward to getting those hand-made-with-love covered-in-glue-and-tape-and-paint-and-glitter type gifts that I remember making at school. I also love making them with Pebble and it’s one of our favourite ways to spend time together.

DIY Striped Frames - hand made by kids

Somehow though, Father’s Day crept up on me this year. Here in Australia it’s always the first weekend in September. Every year. So you think I’d be all organised and on top of it, right? Um, not so much. So it was that Pebble and I were having a very enjoyable and slightly manic painting session on the Friday before Father’s Day. She had an absolute ball and these striped frames turned out just gorgeous. Here’s how we made them. All three of them (for Grandad, Grandad and the Number 1 man himself, Daddy).

DIY Striped Frames – hand made by kids

You will need:

  • wooden picture frames – we bought ours from the local cheap shop for a couple of dollars each
  • paint – we used these colourful no-drip paints given to us by Micador and some poster paints from our supply
  • masking tape
  • paint brushes
  • a bucket of water and a cloth, for quick clean ups
  • old newspapers

DIY Striped Frames - hand made by kids

How to make your DIY Striped Frames

  • Spread out some newspaper in your art space. We had a beautiful almost-Spring day, so we worked outside.
  • Use the masking tape to create a striped pattern on your frames.
  • Stand back and let the kid go nuts with the paint.
  • Leave the frames to dry COMPLETELY. This is where I had to employ the help of  my hair dryer – like I said, we were a bit last minute! No time to waste!
  • Peel off the tape and admire your gorgeous frames.

DIY Striped Frames - hand made by kids

Now all you need is something to put in them! Pebble drew these super cute portraits of Grandad, Grandad and Daddy. My favourite part is the “kisses” on their shoulders. See those ‘x’ marks?

Dislaimer: Micador sent us some paints to try. Thanks Micador! I’m under no obligation to use the paints or write about them and was not compensated in any way.

If you’re looking kid-made gifts then check out these nifty ideas:

Cocoa Mix with Printable Labels Coffee Filter Flowers Photo Puzzle Gift DIY Science Kit Homemade Coconut Ice

DIY Letter Puzzle

DIY Letter Puzzle | Octavia and Vicky

Recently Pebble’s Grandma travelled interstate to visit family, and we had the great pleasure of picking her up from the airport when she returned home. Grandma didn’t know that Pebble and I were going to be there – it was a bit of a last minute decision and a lovely surprise. We were both very eager to see her, we had missed her lots and lots! To prepare for her arrival I made this quick little DIY Letter Puzzle for Pebble, which became the ‘Welcome Home’ sign for Grandma at the airport.

Pebble has been very keen to learn about letters and words lately. She points to print everywhere in her environment and wants to know what it says. She loves to spot her own first initial, and is also getting good and spotting the initials for mum and dad. This DIY Letter Puzzle gave Pebble a chance to practice what she already knew about letters, and to learn about some new letters too. Even if she didn’t know the letter name or sound for all of them, she still enjoyed matching up the letter with the correct shape on the page.

DIY Letter Puzzle

You will need:

  • self adhesive foam letters
  • coloured paper
  • a lead pencil

Preparation:

  1. Go through the letters and select the ones that you need to create the puzzle.
  2. Place (not stick) the letters on the page in the order that they need to go, and trace around each letter to leave an outline on the page. Your puzzle is ready to use!

Play:

  1. Introduce the puzzle to your child. As our puzzle was quite large and included many letters and three words, I started by breaking the puzzle up into three parts – introducing the letters for each word separately. If you have a smaller puzzle (ie. the child’s name) you could introduce all the letters at once.
  2. Talk about the shapes of the letters as you search for the right one to make a match. Are they tall? Curly? Short? Straight? Do they have a ‘tail’? Practice saying the sound that each letter makes. Talk about the order that they go in. Include more or less detail, depending on the age and interest of your child.
  3. Help your child to peel and stick each letter on, if needed. Don’t worry about the finished product, let them explore and give it a go. Some letters may not end up in the right spot, and that’s ok. It’s all a part of the learning process.
  4. Put the finished puzzle on display (or take it to the airport to meet a loved one!).

DIY Letter Puzzle | Octavia and Vicky

Make it meaningful

Making literacy activities like this one meaningful will help your child be more likely to want to be involved, and give them more success with their learning. We had a reason to be making this sign – it was for Grandma! You could try these ideas to make the experience more meaningful for your child:

  • create a sign for their bedroom door
  • create a birthday card and/or envelope for a friend
  • make signs for pretend play (eg. road signs, shop signs)
  • create labels for around the home (kitchen cabinets or toy drawers)
  • copy the names of their favourite story book titles or characters
  • create table mats or place cards for a special dinner
  • make personalised book marks
  • create an alphabet poster

Kylie @ Octavia and Vicky

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Tape Resist Art with Sticky Tape and Crayons

Tape Resist Art with Sticky Tape and Crayons
It was my mum’s birthday this week so Pebble and I created something special to give her. I’ve seen lots of takes on Tape Resist Art – some using masking tape or painters tape and paint, edible finger paint, fabric, and ink. I had an idea to make a poster for Nana, but … let’s be honest… at 32 weeks pregnant the idea of getting out any of these messy materials just feels like hard work right now! So, we experimented, and came up with Tape Resist Art using sticky tape (sellotape) and crayons. I’m sure that I’m not the first person to think of this!

Tape Resist Art with Sticky Tape and Crayons

You will need:

  • 1 sheet of cardboard
  • 1 sheet of paper
  • sticky tape/sellotape
  • crayons
  • tissues
  • optional: hole punch and ribbon for hanging
  1. Use the tape to create the pattern that you want on the paper. We wrote ‘Nana’, but you could do any pattern.
  2. Hand over the crayons and let the drawing (scribbling!) begin. Pebble is in a real scribbling-drawing phase at the moment, so this activity was perfect for her interest. She was a little daunted by the large paper space after a while, but still determined to fill all the white spaces and asked me to help. I always love any excuse to colour :)
  3. Use tissues to wipe over the sellotape and clean off the crayons, revealing your tape masterpiece.
  4. Stick the paper onto your piece of card to create a ‘frame’ and also make it more durable and ready to display.

Tape Resist Art with Sticky Tape and Crayons 2Tape Resist Art with Sticky Tape and CrayonsTape Resist Art with Sticky Tape and Crayons

I’d like to try this again with Pebble doing some free-style taping of her own choice, and one day we will get those messy materials out too, I’m sure.

Have you ever experimented with tape resist art?

Kylie @ Octavia and Vicky

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Cocoa Mix {with printable labels}

Phew! It’s been a strange few days around here. I’m sure most people are feeling the same, ’tis the silly season, after all. On Friday I officially went onto Maternity Leave from my teaching position. I am now on leave until January 2014. Yes Twenty Fourteen! That’s a year and a bit to be full time mama to my big girl, Pebble, and our new baby. I’m excited, and a little bit… terrified!

Luckily I don’t have much time to dwell on how tricky TWO children might be full time (hats off to you all who have three, four… more). As usual I have left my Christmas planning and shopping until after school finishes, so now I’m diving head first into present hunting, shopping and planning what food I’m taking to which events. Lucky for me I’m not hosting anything at our house, so there is a huge load off.

One present I have given out to a few people is a cocoa mix. I call it a Home made Chocolate Blend, but you can call it what you like. Cocoa Mix, Hot Chocolate Mix, Big Jar of Chocolate Awesome. Whatever you call it, it’s delicious! Pebble and I made a few batches for some Kris Kringles and her lovely child care teachers.

It’s really lovely for making hot chocolate, and also makes a lush iced chocolate, or a treaty topping  for ice cream. I adapted this Country Living recipe to make my mix:

Cocoa Mix

  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 170 grams (6 ounces) dark chocolate buttons
  • 50 grams (1/4 cup or 2 ounces) white sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons white sugar, extra
  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 vanilla bean, cut into two or three large pieces

To make: Put all ingredients except vanilla bean into a food processor (I use a hand/stick blender with a bowl attachment), and process until just powdery. Store in an airtight container with the vanilla bean for up to six months.

I used a mason jar to gift the cocoa mix, layering it with the two tablespoons of extra sugar in the jar to make it look pretty. I attached some labels: one with the name of the mix, one with the ingredients and one with some ideas for how to use it. You can download the labels below. The word document allows you to edit blank the label and create your own version, and the PDF is ready to print out and use straight away.

{Printable Cocoa Mix Labels}

Cocoa Mix Printable Labels (pdf)

Cocoa Mix Printable Labels (doc)

Do you like making home made gifts for friends? What’s the best home made gift you’ve ever received?

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