Patty Pan Puppets

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Easy to make puppets from the pantry? Here you go!

Patty Pan Puppets

You will need:

patty pans (cup cake wrappers)
bendy straws
textas
scissors
sticky tape

To make a bird:

1. Take a cup cake wrapper and cut it to create wings, a tail and a beak.

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2. Use a texta to draw on eyes and a beak.

3. Stick that sucker to the bendy top of a bendy straw, and BAM, you got yourself a bird puppet.

We also made a turtle, a bee and a ladybird. The options are only limited by your imagination!

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We totes ripped this idea of the fantastical Mister Maker. He is a wizard with the crafty stuff.

The real beauty of this idea is what comes after the making. These puppets have been having a lovely time at our house. They’ve joined in with lots of dramatic play with blocks, shopping, dress ups and even gone on trips to the supermarket with us.

Have you done anything interesting with a bendy straw lately?

Tissue Box Traffic Lights

I was just flicking through some photos from the last few months and I stumbled across these shots of Pebble and our Tissue Box Traffic Lights. These were so easy to make and lots of fun to play with.

Tissue Box Traffic Lights

Please excuse our garden bed, we’re really hoping to get a veggie patch going in there one day, but don’t hold your breath! I don’t have any gardening posts just yet, but I’m sure you’ll have fun making these:

Tissue Box Traffic Lights

You will need:

An empty tissue box
Black cardboard (or black paint)
Green, orange and red paper
A glue stick
Scissors
A pole/length of wood/old broom

To make the traffic lights:

1. Wrap your tissue box in black paper.

2. Cut out four large circles in each of the red, orange and green paper. Glue them onto your traffic light.

3. Cut a small hold in one end of the tissue box, large enough for your pole, and thread the pole through. I used a little blu-tak to make the end stick to the inside of the box.

4. Plant your traffic light into the garden. If you don’t have a garden you could stick your traffic light to a wall, stand it on a ledge or on prop it a chair.

5. Play!

This craft and play was initiated by Pebble’s growing interest in colours, as well as her understanding of traffic lights on the road. She had learned what each colour meant and she practiced that using her own traffic lights in the backyard. She rode up and down the veranda and shouted out to herself “GREEN GO!” and “RED STOP!”.

Tissue Box Traffic Lights

Doesn’t that sun shine look gorgeous? We haven’t had much sun in Adelaide lately. Is the sun shining where you are?

Post Office Play

Post office play is the stuff that many a childhood is made of. Kids of all ages can easily relate and join in. Pebble loves getting letters in the mail (who doesn’t?!) especially birthday party invitations. The little minx been known to pinch invitations from the fridge and hide them strategically around the house. This inspired me to organise some post office play.

Post office play
{Pebble posting some “letters”. Otherwise known as sticks and stones}

There are some are lots of fun and creative ideas out there for making a play post office or mail box. I am not a craft wizard, and like to make things simply with what we already have to hand. We used a nappy box, some wrapping paper, a bottle top, old cards, scissors, sticky tape, stickers, a few Australia post logos printed from Google Images, and some writing tools.

First, I used scissors to cut holes into the nappy box – one to post letters in, and one to get letters out.

Post office playPost office play

Then we wrapped the box in wrapping paper, making sure to stick it down really well (thanks to Pebble for all those extra pieces of tape!), before cutting through the paper were our mail slots were.

Post office playPost office play

We glued a handle to the back flap, so that the postie could easily get to the letters.

Post office play

Then it was time to write some letters. I have a big stack of cards, some used and some new (thanks Mel!). I sorted through them and picked out a few for Pebble to use in her letter box. She wrote letters to Daddy, Mummy, Rosie (her teddy) and herself. She then used stickers as postage stamps.Post office play

Then the best bit – posting the letters! We made a rookie error here – make sure that your post slot is wider than the paper or cards you intend to post.. whoops! We were only just able to squeeze Daddy’s letter in through the slot.

Post office play

“Mummy, I need my bike, I’m gonna be the postie!”, she said.

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She delivered all the cards to our beds, one on each pillow. “Let’s get in bed and read our cards Mummy”, she said. I had to have a laugh at that suggestion – it made me realise that we always open our birthday cards in bed, I guess it’s become our family tradition.

Post office play

Now I just need to keep some cards, small paper and envelopes in the craft corner so that new letters can be written and posted. I think the toys in this house are going to be inundated with fan mail.

Have you posted any letters to toys lately? Did they write back?

Masking tape city

I bought some masking tape with a crafty painting project in mind, but over this weekend Pebble has still been quite flat, and painting seemed all too hard. Instead I set up a simple road in the middle of the lounge room and waited to see how Pebble would like to play.

“Let’s build a city!” she said. So we did.

Masking Tape City

First Pebble wanted a park at the end of the road, so we set up the little Ferris wheel and roller coaster that I picked up with a bag of other toys from the op shop ($5!). With the park set up it was time to get some buildings organised. Pebble directed me to build with the stacking blocks while she set up the building blocks. Then she got out the cars, the train track and a blue blanket for a swimming pool.

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While I had imagined lengthy, intricate play scenarios with this fabulous city, instead Pebble felt that it obviously needed a cubby. Sure, why not?! Then she preferred to look at her city from her cosy cubby, rather than play with it, and of course it couldn’t be touched for the rest of the day. My goodness, no!

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At bed time I explained that we’d need to pack it away, but that we could build a new city again in the morning. She gave it some thought and decided that might be a good idea. Perhaps she’ll be a city planner one day. I know she’ll definitely be a good negotiator (or perhaps dictator?).

How have you played today?

Light and Colour Play

light and colour play

Every morning I have a Berocca (nope, they’re not my sponsor, but Bayer: call me x). One morning I put my Berocca on the kitchen bench near the window as I stacked the dishwasher, for those invigorating sips between plate placement. It’s a tough job, y’all! Pebble bounded through the kitchen and delighted at the little red rainbow that had appeared on the fridge. Thank you, gorgeous morning light!

light and colour play

light and colour play

Within moments the sun disappeared behind a cloud, and it was bye-bye shining light. Where did it go? How else could we make a light shine through the glass?

We grabbed our torch and tried shining that through the glass – it worked! Not quite as strong, but it worked. What else could we shine a light through? Can we make other colours?

We set up two more glasses filled with water and, lacking any food colouring (what the!? someone add that to my shopping list please), we used a tiny bit of powdered tempura paint. Hmm, the light didn’t shine through the paint. Why not?

I will admit that on this particular morning the call of Weetbix was far stronger than the call of more science play for this little toddler, but I’d like to explore this further with her. Stay tuned!