Showing posts with label babies. Show all posts
Showing posts with label babies. Show all posts

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Babies Can Craft, Too!

When it comes to crafting with small children, there are always lots of ideas out there for toddlers and preschoolers. But what about the babies? 

Believe it or not, it's never to early to start getting arty with the bubs! Once they are of an age where they can sit unaided and grip things, you can start experimenting with them. Most activities will need to wait until they are between 18 months and 2 years old, but there are some things you can do as early as 8-9 months. 

My 9-month-old son LOVES getting his hands dirty. The gooier and stickier, the better! Unlike my now 4-year-old daughter, who hated getting her hands messy as a babe, my little boy has his hands straight in his breakfast, lunch and tea as soon as he possibly can. As he loathes having his hands and face wiped, I encouraged him to dab his messy fingers onto some kitchen roll (paper towels) and showed him the "finger painting" he had done - which made him giggle! 

(c) Image copyright of the author

Once he got the idea (rinse and repeat until it clicks with baby that he is the one making marks), I whipped up some homemade edible finger paint (made from squished fruit and veg, mainly!) and let him start having fun on paper. You can do this with edible play-dough and sensory materials like rice, pasta and so on, too! Baby can even try stamping with potato stamps using food-based "ink"! 

If baby doesn't mind having food and edible paint on his or her hands, then hand printing is a lovely craft to do! It makes a beautiful keepsake to enjoy for years to come. All you need to do is cover baby's hands with the paint and help them press down onto the paper. We have done this with all the family, printing the hands inside one another according to size (Daddy's first, then mine on top, then my daughter's, then my son's) to create a lovely "our family" picture for the wall. You could make cards for friends and family, too (which older siblings can get involved in making).

I cover this and many other ideas for older babies in Crafts for 1 Year Olds. If you like the hand print idea, then crafting connoisseur Pastiche has lots more of them in her Hand Print Crafts guide.

If you want to have a go at making homemade paint for baby, then you'll find several recipes in Homemade Paint for Kids  (just make sure you pick the ones that are entirely food-based and edible, so it is safe for baby to put in his mouth). As for play dough and clay, homemade recipes are covered in Recipes for Fun - Kids Play Doughs and Clays by jkvkdailey.

Now go and enjoy nurturing your tiny one's creative spark!




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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

The Sky is Falling!


Little Henny Penny
Do you remember how it felt when you were expecting your first child?  Perhaps you poured over books like What to Expect When You are Expecting.  Wasn’t it fun to prepare the nursery and begin to shop for baby things?

That’s exactly what I am feeling and doing these days.  There is so much to do to get ready for my little bundles of joy.  I thought I was having triplets, but it turns out it will likely be sextuplets.  Now that was a real shocker. 

I’m hoping to extend my due date for a couple of weeks.  I know that’s counter to what most new mothers-to-be want.  My sister was begging her doctor to induce labor near the end of her first pregnancy.  Given the snow and freezing temperatures, this is no time to be bringing a baby into the world. 

Perhaps you’re thinking I’m a wimp… letting a little April snow and frigid weather take precedence over childbirth.  Um, perhaps this would be a good time to let you know I’m having chicks.  And, those little peeps will be living outdoors at some point.  Since newly hatched chickens cannot regulate their body temperature, even with a heat lamp I don’t dare have them out in a coop in the fickle Ides of April.

So I continue to happily work on the nursery and pour over books like Chick Days.  As I turn each page, my excitement and anticipation grow.  I never imagined having a baby at this age, but I’m told the pleasure is even greater when you're a midlife mother. 

While you wait for the baby announcements to arrive, I invite you to check out my new Chick Days review.  Any advice for this new mother hen?



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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Mailboxology


Photo Credit: ©Renaissance Woman (aka Bird Legs)
What gives a home instant curb appeal?  For me, it’s always the little touches: a willow garden arbor; watching hummingbirds blissing out on red geraniums in window boxes; that classic rocker calling my name on the porch.

When I think first impressions, I always recall a teacher of mine who had the kind of front yard that made you want to stop and linger.  Her brand of curb appeal started less than six inches from the street.  It was always about the mailbox.  People went out of their way to see her latest creation.  I know because I was one of them... her mailbox groupies. 

Today, as I finished revitalizing a seriously sorry looking mailbox at the end of my country lane, I realized I was paying homage to that most extraordinary individual who taught me the true meaning of painting on a whole different kind of canvas.  I only wish it hadn’t taken me so many years to do something about the forlorn sight that greeted every visitor to my home. 

When does a mailbox become more than a mailbox?  It ceases to be a standard 6-inch x 18-inch receptacle when it becomes a means of celebrating life, personal expression, and the essence of home.  Thank you, my friend, for teaching me to see the potential in everything.  If there were such a thing as human curb appeal, its name and definition would be Carolyn.

Though my first mailbox renovation isn’t on a par with her works of art, I think she would be pleased that I went all out to create something whimsical.  Carolyn, more than anyone, understood that whimsy is good for the soul.  I hope my new mailbox makes someone, maybe you, smile on the inside. 

What kind of whimsy might you express today? 



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