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Archive for the ‘Gettin’ our craft on’ Category

I am super proud of these busy garden scenes the girls and I just spent an hour making:



I love them because the girls did most of it on their own.

I love them because they look great!

I love them because, despite only having six hours sleep last night, I managed to be totally cool and let the girls take the original idea (a garden) and do what they wanted with it, instead of getting all uptight and perfectionist about it.

I love them because it was relaxing time spent with the girls when we weren’t rushing from place to place.

I love that Molly had a go at writing her name:


This is the first craft thing we have done in yonks, and it was a good reminder of how enjoyable it can be when I just go with it. With Tiernan at school now, it has been tricky trying to work out what to do with the girls in the small amounts if down time we do have, because I’ve been worried about Tiernan feeling like he’s missing out. It’s a bit silly, I know: he has done plenty of things the girls haven’t, over the years, simply because he is older. But still, it seems wise not to make days at home with Mum sound too exciting, especially while he’s having trouble settling.

Craft seems like a happy medium for now, until Tiernan is secure enough for us to do a few more special things without him.


The kids got some new face paints for Christmas and, given the stormy weather, this afternoon seemed a good time to give them a go.

Molly and Neave both requested butterflies, and through the magic of google, we soon found a nice one for me to copy. Simplicity was the key, as I’m really not the world’s best face painter.

Here’s how Molly’s turned out:


I was quite pleased with it, but after running to the mirror to check it out, Molly declared she hated it!! The lines were a bit chunkier than the one I was copying, and the colours not as bright. However, after a few minutes she looked again and decided it was acceptable. Phew! Looks like Mummy needs some practice.

Next came Neave, and as usual, she wanted exactly the same as Molly. I got as far as the pink and purple base before she changed her mind and wanted a cat. Oh.


I thought I made a pretty good save, actually. Neave was happy, too.

Tiernan kept changing his mind between wanting Spiderman, Batman or Ben 10, so we just looked at a few images and he settled on, well, I’m not really sure what it’s supposed to be:


Some kind of gruesome zombie/skeleton thing I guess. Anyway, he has been running around, jumping out of hiding places and scaring us all afternoon since his ‘transformation’, so he’s pretty thrilled with the results, too.

All in all, a nice way to spend a rainy afternoon.

I haven’t done anything creative with the kids since… Christmas. I think it’s because I overdosed in the Christmas lead-up and afterwards the limited interest I have in crafty projects with the kids diminished completely. It’s not that I don’t like craft. I’m pretty crafty myself, when the mood takes me. But I’m also a control freak and don’t like relinquishing power to the messy ones. Because they are messy. They don’t care whether all of the paint ends up in one tub, or all of the tiny little googly eyes end up scattered all over the floor, or whether the things we end up making even remotely resemble the things we actually set out to make. They don’t care one little bit. I try not to, but I do. I really do.

Anyway, I’ve been feeling guilty about not having much time to sit and do things with the kids lately. Or, more to the point, that sometimes I do have time, but I choose to spend it checking Facebook or my email instead. So today we did craft. It was inspired by the craft that was offered at playgroup – they blew up balloons and stuck stuff to them to make animals. I thought, “Sure, we have balloons, we have crepe paper, we have googly eyes – we can make octopuses!”

But Tiernan had different ideas. He wanted to make a bee. And because Tiernan wanted to make a bee, Molly, who had been excitedly describing to me the octopus she was going to make, changed her mind mid-sentence and also declared she was making a bee. So they made bees. I didn’t really give them much guidance about how to make their balloons bee-like, I just helped them with the steps they wanted help with. Here is what they came up with:


Some pretty cute bees, I reckon. I love the cheeks most of all.

I learnt some lessons in this: craft can more fun when I’m not trying to control everything – since there was no plan to follow, I didn’t have to stress when the plan didn’t go to plan; I also learnt that these two are pretty good at using the tape and the glue (which is no thanks to me – they must have picked it up at preschool and daycare), so I should give them more credit, and more freedom to explore, in future.

Did we end up with permanent marker on the table? Yes. Does it really matter? No. The kids had fun, and for a change, I did too.

An early visit from Spring meant that we could indulge in some water play. As you can see, Neave ended up wearing most of the water!

Some puppet craft:

Some cake-decorating practice:

Some rowing:

I'm in the back and my sister Kate is in the front

And someone learnt how to do up his buttons on his own!

Raining again today.

Started to make caterpillars with the kids. Got carried away with colour mixing and ended up with some truly hideous hues…

Heaps of paint leftover, so finger painting ensued.

Even more paint left over, so I had a go (with a brush, not fingers).

Really quite chuffed with the results!

We made these today:

The kids also painted a ‘pond’ as a backdrop to our water creatures mural. I handed the kids some paint brushes and plastic lids with green and blue paint in them, but it wasn’t long before we decided to ditch the middle man and squirt the paint directly onto the paper. Hands, feet, arms and knees were all used to spread the paint! It looks great, though!


Posted on: February 13, 2011

So, in amongst the hecticness that was my birthday (!), I managed to get some motivation together, and the kids and I did not one, but two craft activities in two days!! Some kind of record, I believe. (The fact that Neave also decided to have three-hour morning naps for a few days may have had something to do with it…)

For some reason, a ‘water-creature’ theme seemed appropriate, so we have made fish:

And Jellyfish:

I’m thinking of making a mural with our creatures. I wonder what we should add next?