Daily Verse or Quote:
“The soul should always stand ajar. Ready to welcome the ecstatic experience.”
- Emily Dickinson
|Our Winter Nature Table|
|My Glass Nativity|
Things are really beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here! We've had most of our decorations up since the day after Thanksgiving but much fine tuning has been going on this week.
We do have a nice advent tradition- going on three years strong! I have a small pocket calendar for each day of this month that I fill with candy and a slip of paper for either a present, craft, or trip each day. We also read a different story each day as well. I do not use the same crafts each year but the trips have been staying the same. I have a good mix in there.
Today we made clay ornaments. You can find the directions on how to make them here. I love that you can pick your own shapes and paint them as well. My kids loved this craft. We used acrylic paint and a mod podge shimmer seal to make sure that they last. I also suggest using lots of corn starch to roll them on. Another bonus is that these are totally non toxic. Jonas ate a bunch and well the corn starch and baking soda won't hurt him in the least.
Someone asked me about this recently. In order to get extra crafts done during the holidays, or really any day with young kids, I have a few suggestions-
1. Plan ahead. Pre assemble during nap time all the needed supplies, pre-measured if necessary. I store my supplies in a plastic tub so that once we are done it all goes in the tub and away. This prevents them from getting into it and I then don't stress over not having a clear table. If you need to re-organize your supplies, wait until later. It will wait for you safely in the tub until then.
2. Make clean up easy. Use a drop cloth and then just bundle up the mess for clean up after dinner. I use an old plastic table cloth for this. Keep baby wipes handy for cleaning up quick messes. Oh and just strip your kids down or use and old t-shirt. We have designated paint shirts here.
3. Make a crock pot dinner. I tend to craft after naptime with my kids on non co-op days. My husband works nights, so it is just me and them. In order to have time to eat I make an easy crock pot meal that night. I put it in in the morning or during nap so that it will be ready about the time we finish crafting. This book is awesome for dinner ideas: Fix it and Forget it
4. Make the craft with them. I always enjoy myself more and engage better if I paint along with them. I have no big expectation for what I do but it keeps me from being tempted to do something else instead of spending time with them and their craft.
5. Let go. Since we crafted tonight, I have yet to do my dishes and fold my laundry. Oh well. It can wait. We had a great time. We made memories, and tomorrow when we won't be crafting so I can catch up.
If being creative with your kids is a priority, and I believe it should be in what ever form you choose, then you need to put it first and make time for it. If you don't then it probably won't happen.
6. Forgive yourself. Please remember, it is also fine if something unexpected comes up and you need to postpone the project. Life happens too. Mother guilt is evil and totally self inflicted. Rise above it. You will get around to doing something fun once life calms down. Your kids will be fine in the meantime. Just remember this extra preparation that you need to do when they're little, will end. Once they're older- they can and will want to do this on their own. Embrace and enjoy the craziness!
So there you have it! Enjoy and I hope you get some crafting done. Pleas feel free to comment and share a link to some of your crafts you all have been doing. I love to see them and get new ideas!!!
|Co-op Christmas tree, soon to be decorated!|
|Winter seasonal ring|
|Mid-sentence talking about her green ornament.|
|Jonas is intense about painting. I love it!|